Becoming aware of three topics enabled me to identify and properly understand the improprieties of the Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality, and specifically the Water Quality Division. These improprieties involved possible violations of State and Federal law, possible negligence, retributive and abusive behavior towards employees and intentionally putting the health of the public at risk.
These topics were gaslighting, workplace mobbing, and models of various cases of government corruption, the coup d’état against the government and Presidency of John F. Kennedy being a prime example, and one that I will treat below. These three topics enabled me to take up a more realistic understanding of just how bad things were in this agency, contrary to my naïve desire that alternative explanations and outcomes obtained, and how in need of correction this agency had become.
Yes, it could happen here.
What is gaslighting? Was it a Lenny Bruce joke, or did it come from the Marx Brothers, or both: A guy’s wife walks in unexpectedly and catches him making time with his secretary. She is horrified and outraged. When he says, “Who are you gonna believe, me or your lying eyes?”–that, is gaslighting. The term derives from the name of a play that appeared in London, and then on Broadway, between 1938 (Gas Light) and 1941 (Angel Street), and most notably was made into a film by George Cukor in 1944, starring Ingrid Bergman, and called Gaslight. The psychologically manipulative tactic of gaslighting involves the actions of a sociopathic or narcissistic personality who is confident of their charm or their social or organizational position and who can garner tacit trust from the contextual group. They then provoke the victim my small, incongruous alterations, puzzling–but trifling bureaucratic actions not initially considered worthy of complaint, and then carefully titrated instigations unnoticed by the contextual players–but which now produces a justified, but socially disapproved of “over-reaction” by the victim. The over-reaction is viewed by the group–indeed even the victim–as evidence of the victim’s mental instability, lack of emotional discipline, guilt, or vaguely imputed “problems” or “issues.” In fact, the latter two words are commonly in such situations employed as half-whispers with a prolonged “o” or “sh” sounds, respectively, with thinly-veiled, feigned discretion. The perpetrators seem to derive some delight in wielding what they perceive to be superior power over the straightforwardly unsuspecting victim, who then often either deteriorates psychologically–becoming more vulnerable–or who suddenly and perhaps injudiciously overcomes initial naiveté or magnanimity with an outburst of frustration. In either case, the perpetrator has claimed the evidence needed corroborate his or her cause for the surreptitious and strategically muted campaign against the victim.
Elsewhere at this website, I describe workplace mobbing. My Dissertation director at Notre Dame, Professor Harald Esch, was a radiation biologist who became interested in the dance language of Honey Bees while working on a summer project with the Nobel Laureate, Karl von Frisch. Von Frisch (color vision, Honey Bee language) shared the 1973 Nobel Prize for Medicine or Physiology along with Nikolaas Tinbergen (instinct) and Konrad Lorenz (imprinting, aggression and mobbing). This was the first Nobel Prize to recognize the physiological underpinnings of behavior. Mobbing behavior was a portion of the laboratory exercises assigned to the students in animal behavior (ethology) class. Long-ago memories of this topic of mobbing would finally provoke my curiosity into the certain similarities that I was seeing in my workplace at the Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality and the examples of mobbing with which I was familiar from years before. I realized that this rather odious practice of human, workplace mobbing had taken hold with the appointment of a particular Director of Water Quality. Much research and in particular two works, Mobbed!, by Janice Harper and Mobbing, by Noa Davenport, et al. were important in helping me rescue myself with integrity from what was becoming an increasingly perplexing and toxic situation. Again, more on mobbing elsewhere as this online enterprise develops. I think we will be able to effect significant help for honest and trusting workers who find themselves in a corrupt or sociopathological organization, or both.
Finally, like many Americans my age, the coup d’état that occurred on November 22, 1963, was a defining event for our lives. Though most members of younger generations do not realize it–it is for them as well.
As a young boy I stood, along with my parents, with a few feet of this man, in this car, seated in this position as seen in the photograph above, as he passed by us traveling along California Avenue headed into downtown Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. I believe that I have correctly identified the date as October 12, 1962. His horrific death thirteen months later would shatter the American psyche in a manner that the trials of two World Wars with a depression sandwiched in between, a nuclear threat made ever-present by Monday-noon air-raid sirens, a Korean War and a Cold War did not. Our innocence was shattered more completely than wars with enemies because we began to suspect the possibility that there were forces at home that represented an even more insidious danger. The Warren Commission Report, which my mother immediately ordered upon availability and which I began examining even in grade school, did not satisfy the gnawing questions, questions that only grew with time. This unease would not go away because it became increasingly clear that the public was being denied the true facts of that fateful day in Dallas.
I grew up in Pittsburgh. The coroner of Allegheny County, the County in which the City of Pittsburgh was located, was Dr. Cyril H. Wecht, a well-known critic of the single-bullet theory–and thus necessarily and determined per force by the facts–a proponent of the unavoidable conclusion that the assassination of the President was unquestionably a conspiracy, along with much corroborating evidence as well.
By the way, I confess–in the interest of full disclosure–that besides Gene Alley and Bill Mazeroski, short stop and second baseman, respectively, for the Pittsburgh Pirates–Dr. Wecht was one of the heroes of my youth. Okay, I was a bookish as well as an athletic kid that liked biology & medicine in addition to baseball. Listen to Dr. Wecht’s passion. This is a Northeasterner and a Jewish intellectual, not a mid-westerner. Here in Oklahoma, this kind of passion is called “unhinged ranting” with “erratic, lunging movements.” In Pittsburgh, we call this exuberance being a normal, fully-actualized, integrated personality with a capacious intellect and admirable force of personality. Sometimes regional, religious, ethnic, and racial differences become the basis for animosities and distrust that hinder conversation and cooperativity. When cooperativity is needed to achieve a goal, like serving the public with properly functioning government, or the exposure of wrongdoing in government, the impedance caused by failure to communicate can be fatal. Near the end of Dr. Wecht’s talk in the 2017 video below, he presents the oft-referred to cartoon frame from Pogo.
Concerning the JFK story as an example of government gone bad, both in the planning of the assassination and in its coverup, without a doubt, Douglas Horne’s summary of his five-volume, Inside the Assassinations Records Review Board, is the best account of which I am familiar. “Altered History: Exposing Deceit and Deception in the JFK Assassination Medical Evidence Parts 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5” is an excellent set of five videos produced under the auspices of the Future of Freedom Foundation.
The five-video series can be found in its entirety here, at the link below, for a very full weekend of viewing. (You could simply cut your grass next week.)
There are four areas of the Kennedy assassination that drew my attention because of key elements in which I found thematic similarity with the situations I experienced at the Oklahoma DEQ. These areas of investigation, or potential investigation, all involved technical experts–after the fact–coming into conflict with, compliance with, or innocent participation in, the designs being executed by intermediary agents acting at the behest, ultimately, of authorities who were complicit in the planning and execution of the assassination and cover up. The first of these four areas were the physicians & surgeons and personnel in the emergency room of Parkland Hospital (the civilian medical sphere, it was also a medical academic setting and involved the county government in the person of Dr.
Earl Rose, the coroner for Dallas County, Texas). The second involved personnel at Bethesda Naval Hospital where the postmortem activities occurred (the military medical sphere). The third involved the photographic processing and analytic experts at the CIA’s National Photographic Interpretation Center (government & quasi-military sphere). And finally, the fourth involved a specialty, Kodak laboratory in Rochester, New York (the corporate sphere, but exactly what Eisenhower pointed to as making up the government-military complex).
These four areas all have unique modes of authority, with perhaps the Parkland doctors representing the most civilian of all four cases. Indeed, Dr. Rose, as coroner, was the highest legal authority in a murder case followed by the county sheriff.
The illegal spiriting away of the body of the John F. Kennedy was not the first–but it was a major act–after the fact–of the unfolding cover up with both its planned and unplanned contingencies. Here, in the hallway of Parkland Hospital, in the violent confrontation between the Secret Service (guns drawn by the SS, Dr. Rose thrown against the wall according to Wecht’s comments) was the greatest opportunity for civilians, with no involvement in the crime or cover up, to guide the outcome toward a truthful resolution. That opportunity was lost. And so escalated what became a disturbing case study into the abuse of authority. The cover up that ensued, itself, has profoundly altered the modern world for the worst.
In the Bethesda theater of the cover up the military culture becomes critical in the facilitation of the crime. Where there is unquestioned deference & obedience to authority, coupled with secrecy, there is great potential for great crimes to occur. In the words of Jacob Hornberger, author of The Kennedy Autopsy, a short summary of Horne’s five-volume work, “There is no question…but that military culture played a critically important role in the autopsy of John F. Kennedy’s body.”
All of the evidence that has come available since 1963 indicates that the autopsy conducted on the already posthumously mutilated body of John F. Kennedy was a fraud from beginning to end. Men who were physicians (technical expertise) and military officers (positional, military authority) acted according to extreme deference and what I characterize elsewhere in this website as malignant obedience. Malignant obedience is not a virtue.
This study will serve as a basis for my thesis that military-style authority, as already exhibited at Oklahoma DEQ, but that was enhanced further under a new Director of the Water Quality Division in 2010, with yet a further exacerbation in 2014 with a new Associate Director, are creating an egregiously hazardous concerning situation for the protection of human health. The problem most likely extends to the agency as a whole, as well, at least the central authorities and legal division.
Couple this with the persistence of what the founding director of the agency, DEQ, surely intended: that is, the selection of a disproportionate representation of Church of Christ members as managers and staff. This created a closed-social organization that is existent to this day and one must assume has operative consequences. Some have called this a “cult,” some have called it a “gang,” “clan,” “tribe,” we can at least here agree to call it a group with not-representative makeup but likely having functional significance. Add to this the frank nepotism and cronyism and the Oklahoma DEQ, as an agency, is a candidate governmental organization desperately in need of consideration for deep structural reform. This should be undertaken by Governor Mary Fallin in collaboration with the overseeing offices of EPA Region 6 in Dallas, Texas. However, such reformation must be done in a completely transparent manner that involves the public and involves a true examination of the systemic problems, perhaps even corruption, of this agency. A mere whitewash will not do.
I hope that the outcome of my legal actions will provoke genuine and thorough investigations.