Originally published at Sultan Knish.
Sometimes a conspiracy theory exposes a conspiracy. Sometimes the conspiracy theory is the conspiracy. JFK assassination plots are the only conspiracy theories to be widely accepted by the general public. The moon landing filmed in a studio, the Lincoln conspiracy or the World Trade Center being blown up by lasers from outer space never gained much credence because they lacked mainstream backing. Conspiracy theories ordinarily remain on the margins. The JFK theories were too important to the liberals who were really running things to allow them to die out.There are probably more Americans who could tell you the ins and outs of the “magic bullet” than can recite the Bill of Rights from memory. More books have been sold about the Kennedy assassination than about any of the real government abuses taking place today.The 50th anniversary of the Kennedy assassination brings with it the usual weighty tomes, speculative articles and nostalgic reminiscing by liberal baby boomers about the utopia that might have been.
John F. Kennedy long ago stopped being a politician and became the collective egotism of a certain type of liberal of a certain age. He had become an unreal figure long before he died, composed of wishes and progressive fantasies, photos with cool celebrities and generational gloating. His death made that unreality permanent, relegating the real man to a Camelot of collective liberal fantasies.
The JFK assassination became a liberal martyrdom in search of a conservative inquisitioner. Oliver Stone’s JFK was a laborious effort to connect the martyrdom of a liberal icon to the despicable conservative villains that the narrative of this political theology demanded.
The gnostic elements of martyrdom usually involve the revelation of spirituality in the mortal flesh. But JFK, like Obama, had always been more than mortal, a creature of flashbulbs and film, a messiah of a new generation and a new age. It was his opponents who represented the prosaic materialism of money and steel, three-piece suits and conservatism, who had to be exposed and outed.
For the Kennedy martyrdom to have deep spiritual meaning, it had to have come at the hands of those who represented everything that opposed the values of the Cult of Camelot. And so a vital element of JFK worship, like O.J. Simpsonism had to be the search for the real killers. And like O. J. Simpsonism, the real killer had to be searched for because everyone knew who the real killer was.
Camelot was a messianic age of political transcendence that had been aborted forcing us to live through more cycles of materialistic history. The political messianism of JFK was as doomed as that of Obama or any other liberal savior. Unlike Obama, it conveniently ended in a martyrdom which excused a generation of liberal failures.
The revolution didn’t fail. It was murdered. The endless search for the real killers was not done to find them, but to perpetuate the martyrdom myth. The search could never be complete, the conspiracy theories could provide no closure, though the lynching of Nixon, for daring to try and make JFK’s liberal legacy work helped put to rest the ghosts of Camelot for many angry liberals.
Most conspiracy theories have two purposes; they make the world seem like an orderly place in which everything happens for a reason and they sell books. The former is another reflection of the death of religion. The search for secret knowledge, a battle between the powers of good and evil for the soul of the world, is secularized and politicized for a materialistic spirituality.
JFK was the martyr of the new America that was being born. That America would be a chaotic place where madmen would do what they pleased, where the planners would fail and anarchy would rub shoulders with tyranny, meaning would be lost and those who pursued it would lose their minds and laugh their insanity for the entertainment of the masses. And that was just the seventies.
Three years after the Kennedy assassination in Dallas, an engineering student and another former marine would climb a tower at the University of Austin and open fire. The killing spree would become a starting point in an accelerating trend of mass killings.