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Do you think it’s possible that with the war in Iraq, years down the road, some soldiers coming home and can’t find jobs, continued on page 28 FOLK ART & OTHER TREASURES FROM MONO THE WORLD 209 CONGRESS AVE. AUSTIN 512/479-8377 li tio 0OPEN DAILY 10-6 .6r24 You come from the governing class. That has to affect your outlook on the world. How does that affect the views of you and your contemporary, former President George [H.W.] Bush? You both, for example, come from the same class. And yet you both look at the world very differently. Well at the risk of sounding slightly snobbish, he’s a slightly lower class than we are. The Gores also have slightly higher IQs than the Bushes. Demonstrably. No, he’s a hustler. I’m more interested in history. All he knows about is how to raise money and promote himself for jobs in which he does nothing at all when he gets thereor did nothing at all when he got there. I would say we’re totally opposites. Although we’re exact contemporaries. I was at Exeter. He was at Andover. You were quoted by Marc Cooper regarding the prospects of a military dictatorship in this country. In a recent interview, Col. Larry Wilkerson, who served with Conn Powell at Defense, then at the State Department, was on the same page as you. He says that the next terrorist act will move us toward tyranny or toward a military dictatorship. Will you comment on that? Where do you see that coming from? From the military. Because we’ve never had it doesn’t mean the potential isn’t there. The military is essentially only loyal to the military. They accept the civilian mastery of their corps. But they don’t really like that. And now they get people as inept as this crowd. For all practical purposes, I would say, the Army has been wrecked. The management, the civilian management, doesn’t know what it’s doing: “Oh, yeah, invade Iraq. Are you ready, general?” And [the military] will realize that they will be put to further bad purposes. And they will throw the rascals out. It will be in the interest of keeping order. The next time we’re hit? They have made plans for nothing. There are no defenses. There’s a vast bureau of homeland security that gives lots of titles to jobs for whatever the lowly things that people do now. But there’s no prepara He was very concerned and extremely intelligent. And a very dedicated patriot. Expressing it in sometimes rather odd ways, I would need to concede. I was not in favor of his explosives. He had worked it out pretty much on his own. I gave him some ideas just before he was killed. He was very brave about what he called “federally assisted suicide,” [which] is how he referred to his final inoculation. I said, “Well, you can probably take some solace:’ He knew America was going to evolve and he was John Brown of Kansaspremature. was sort of at liberty. He went down to Waco and watched the feds destroy this bunch of religious nutsfor whom he had no feeling. But he had a lot of feeling for the Posse Comitatus Act of 1875. You may not use federal troops against to keep order amongAmerican citizens. It is inscribed in marble and the brain of every professional soldier. And he saw that the federal government was breaking it… with religious regularity. And the fire entered his soul. I don’t think he had anything to do with the bombing of the Murrah Building. There were a lot of co-conspirators. I list them by their FBI numbers”of interest to be investigated:’ No one was investigated. The template for the bad people in the United States is always Dallas. It’s always the lone, crazed killer. So everybody else is off the hook. Sane people don’t do that. You have to be crazy. There’s a very good book out about what happened in Dallas. A huge book, two authors: Supreme Sacrifice. If you look at the end of my book, you’ll see that I quote from it. And in each case, there is an elaborate conspiracy. Lee Harvey Oswald had nothing to do much with the first one in Dallas. Neither did McVeigh in Oklahoma. tion. I’m not the sort of person who worries about the open border, and couldn’t care less who wanders into Texas. But what shipping comes into our ports? I was made very thoughtful about this by certain documentaries I’ve seen. These great tankers come in with huge cargoes. Just put a bomb in one of those, and there goes the port of New York. Or L.A. And we’ve done nothing. You’ve got to fight them over there. Or you’ve got to fight them over here. [Vidal says this in a spot-on impersonation of the current President Bush]. Now there is one of the stupidest lines that that master of stupidity has come up with. How are they going to get here? What will they do when they are here? Where do they ask for directions? We don’t really have proper Greyhound buses anymore. I can’t see a real invasion. You had mentioned that when you were corresponding with Timothy McVeigh, he was like a warning bell. Oh boy, he was. And that ties in with the present? That’s an interesting parallel. What was the moral issue that would compare to John Brown’s? He’s written quite a bit on it in stuff that got published before he was removed from this vale of tears. He was a professional soldier. The Army loved him. He got the Bronze Star. He got all kinds of decorations for the Gulf War. He was trying get into a special outfit when he 20 THE TEXAS OBSERVER DECEMBER 1, 2006