Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Another Book of Secrets?

All one has to do is mention "conspiracy theory" and modern audiences run away faster than Sir Robin at the Cave of Caerbannog, or so his minstrels tell me. Yet, because of continued inquiries regarding certain truths after publication of his Lincoln article from two weeks prior (see Bad Actors), former detective, Prof. Alex Taylor, springboards a perfect swan dive into the President Lincoln's assassination pool. Without spoiling, you should read his article first. Additional commentary will follow.

Originally published in the Gainesville Times, April 5, 1988, Taylor Tuesday explores several mysteries surrounding Lincoln's murder, Booth's escape, and some of the mysteries that allowed both of those events to occur.

Lincoln's murder has been the subject of innumerable books, documentaries, and movies. One central and recurring factor with so many high-profile assassinations' conspiracy theories seems to be political bias, business dealings, and oppositional sympathy. The Kennedy's and MLK, Julius Caesar, Mohandas Gandhi, Malcolm X... just Google it if you really want a full rundown. 

Many of the those outlying, unsolved mysteries are largely unexplored because, inevitably, many of their inquisitors come to a conclusion that the truth either serves no purpose in a modern context, or that the truth may yield far more sinister consequences.

"Best leave it alone."

Oh, but we can't, can we... 

As a purely academic exercise, let's try a couple and see how you feel about it.

1) Our POTUS suddenly announced that 9/11 was executed by named governments, royal, and multinational corporate concerns via leveraged Saudi nationals (patriotism and legacy are easy motivators) under contract with Bin Laden, and not a unilateral jihadist terrorist action — all for the control of oil, other natural resources critical for upcoming tech, and of course, arms sales. 

Is this a truth you'd really want to know? Too large of a conspiracy?
Okay, let try another wild one.

2) A national news outlet breaks a story regarding a lost tape recording of highest-level elected government officials discussing details that indicates MLK's assassination was in fact a planned suicide so that he'd become an unstoppable martyr — a symbol — for equal rights, justice and hope.

I know, bonkers... but what do you think would happen if something even remotely as ridiculous as this hit the air?

At times, the truth and its pursuit can be tiring, ineffectual, and frankly boring — a monumental waste of time and resources. I wonder what Robert Todd would say today.

Now, about those missing 18 pages...

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Dumping Mary

Same old story. Beauty meets the Beast. Beast Wins.
That's what happens outside of Hollywood, anyway.
Stinging, cold truth.

Alex Taylor presents Mary Rogers' case below, as published in the Gainesville Times, Tuesday, March 29th, 1988.

In a way, this one reminds of the O.J. Simpson circus. Maybe the truth of it is obviated, yet obscured by wild media speculation and the lack of solid, irrefutable forensic evidence. The truth narrative becomes further muddled when celebrities orbit the case, providing their own influence. Worse, while it was fresh, Mary's story was in essence retold and "solved" by a popular macabre scribe, Edgar Allen Poe. Takes one to know one?

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Bad Actors

Uh oh. Lincoln conspiracy post. Well, one can't be much of a crime history professor without mention of one of the most widely publicized, theorized, dramatized, and scrutinized assassinations in antiquity, save John F. Kennedy and Julius Caesar.

Spoiler Alert.  It was Booth.

This Alex Taylor column originally appeared in the Gainesville Times March 22, 1988, and it echoes some of the "darkness" surrounding our current president. Context being, at the time, Lincoln wasn't exactly popular.


Of course, my reaction was the same. Not popular? How'd he get elected? As it turns out, my father's context wasn't far off. Popular now does not mean popular then. Ask any oil painter. I won't stray from the objective center of neutral presenter by commenting on Trump the man, or Trump the President. While popular media sensationalizes certain narratives and agendas, he, like Lincoln, will ultimately be revered and reviled by actions and fact. "He had, time and again, ignored Congress with strange executive orders that infuriated even members of his own party." Sound familiar? But let's not detract from the questions at issue below. Mary Surratt's case is indeed fascinating from a legal standpoint, as is John Frederick Parker's.

Tuesday, January 7, 2020

The Silence of Seamen

You know as children we sometimes revel in the mistakes of our parents. They are, of course, faultless and will remind you of such until something happens that simply cannot be explained away—not even in the very best examples of parental misdirection. Alas, we were all subject to comparatively scant official references compared to today's info overloads, and urban (in this case suburban) myths regularly graced the pages of "trusted" periodicals, including the hometown newspaper. Tisk!
Glad this one was harmless.

Published Tuesday, March 15, 1988 in the Gainesville Times, Alex Taylor Tuesday begins with his recollections of a vacation once taken to Bermuda and the superstitions of the sea. He cites the case of the HMS Friday—a ship that never existed outside of persistent recirculation. Oops. (Fake News!) Ah, but Dad recovers nicely with the tale of the Mary Celeste, a bona fide nautical mystery if there was one. In the Victorian Era, a man could say anything if the obvious evidence matched, as this was well before the maturation of forensic science. The Mary Celeste would also fall prey to fake news. Some things never change. If you recall, the same nonsense happened to Flight 19, a training flight of torpedo planes that disappeared within the Bermuda Triangle in December 1945. The pilot-less planes showed up in the Sonoran Desert some 32 years later. ;)

T. Nelson Taylor | Official Site | DusT | Bolita