Guns Pointed At Me


by Mike Palecek

… A while back, in the Bush days and the Iraq war days, the post-911 days, very bad old days, I wrote “The American Dream,” a novel, to try to stop war and tell the truth about what really happened on Sept. 11, 2001.

And then I borrowed a bunch of money, scheduled about 80 book tour stops all around the country and took off in an old Honda Accord with bumper stickers that said “Impeach Bush” and something else that I can’t remember.

Well, I wrote a column a day while on the road and Tony Sutton of Cold Type Magazine published them, in volumes I & II, because it took me two years to complete the tour.

(April 8, 2007)

SHELDON, IOWA – Hello all.

I am home this weekend for Easter, watching the Red Sox and Rangers on Sunday Night baseball.

I was in Lincoln, Omaha, Wayne, Sioux Falls since writing last.

Lots of memories in Omaha. Ruth and I lived there during much of the 1980s in a resistance community in north Omaha called Greenfields, named after the anti-war song The Greenfields of France.

“Oh how do ya do young Willie McBride. Do you mind if I sit down here by your graveside.”

I think I carved that into my cell in Terre Haute Penitentiary while I was there for three weeks waiting transfer to El Reno, Leavenworth and La Tuna.

Terre Haute. “Dog-ass Terre Haute” somebody on the prison bus said as we pulled within sight.

We had come from Chicago and stopped at Marion earlier in the day to pick up a couple of guys bound for Leavenworth after years in lockdown at Marion.

Or maybe Marion came after Terre Haute. Not sure that I remember anymore.

You get out of the prison bus and you walk up toward the big brick penitentiary, through the guard towers and the shotguns and rifles. And you know that none of it has to do with right and wrong.

It has to do with we are bigger than you and we could give a shit about thou shall not kill and the poor and any of that shit and we will kill you if you get out of line and run toward home and your son and your wife.

And ‘scuse me, but that walk up from the prison bus to the big brick walls of Terre Haute Penitentiary is where I formed a good deal of my opinion of America.

Even days and weeks and years spent in hot and cold classrooms, wooden desks and Formica desks, listening to Sister Anita and, Lucy, Monique and Luellan, studying American History and religion and English and hygiene, from impressive, hard cover textbooks made in Texas could not compare.

The guns were pointed at me.

My son was sitting at home in Nebraska looking out the window wondering when I was coming home.


It is big and it will kill you.

It is mean. It is rich. It is obnoxious.

It is beautiful.

It has people capable of stopping their car in rush hour traffic to move a baby bird to the grass, or of looking the other way for forty years while people suffer and suffer and finally die.

America. A big, red brick walled country.

But, shit, the people who will stop in traffic for the little bird are far and few between, while the ones who will take money to build big, red brick walls are lined up from here to the hardware store.

Anyway …

 Dog-ass Omaha.

I went to jail for the first time in Omaha, along with the second, third, fourth and fifth times.

I went to seminary from Omaha, too.

Took the bus, Greyhound, from Norfolk, to meet the bishop. Then up to Saint Paul where I met Fr. Daniel Berrigan, a priest who said there were better things than becoming a priest, such as working for peace and for justice and the poor, and I believed him. I still do.

During the summer I got my teeth cleaned back home in Norfolk, and I guess I liked clean teeth, so I ended up marrying the dental hygienist. We moved to Omaha and moved into Greenfields.

I wrote a letter to Archbishop Daniel Sheehan asking him what he thought of Offutt Air Force Base, home of the Strategic Air Command, which was responsible for the targeting of all of America’s nuclear weapons.

Sheehan said the targeting was cool with him and the Catholic Church. Threatening all those people with murder was cool, spending all those billions of dollars on weapons and not on the poor people of north Omaha was cool with the bishop and the Catholic Church.

So I made up my own little sign.

It said “The Omaha Catholic Church Supports SAC – Why?”

I picketed outside the bishop’s offices on Dodge Street, inside his offices, outside the Masses of the jillion Catholic churches in Omaha. I went on a hunger strike once inside Douglas County Correctional Center to try to get the bishop to say “thou shall not kill.”

I once stood in front of the congregation at St. Cecilia’s Cathedral while the bishop gave his Easter homily, holding my sign.

I once took sanctuary inside the Cathedral, went there instead of going to federal court for an Offutt protest, again asking, demanding that the bishop say “thou shall not kill.” He raised a strong chin, firmly placed his red bishop’s cap on his head and smoothed his gold-laced, ankle-length robes and said, of course, he would not.

I decided not to let the FBI take me – they were all around the church – one was posing as a stations-of-the-cross sayer inside the church.

While a friend held a diversionary press conference on the front steps I pulled a sweatshirt hood over my head and threw a black garbage sack over my back and walked out a side door, took out the Cathedral garbage, and hopped into the car my wife had left for me in the parking lot.

Ruth and I and our young son were on the run from the FBI for about two nerve-wracking weeks, staying in the cabin of a sympathetic priest, at the mother house of a local religious order, in a friend’s apartment, out at her family’s farm in South Dakota.

Then I ended up giving myself up at a press conference, again at the Chancery, the bishop’s office, after which my wife and son went home alone. I went to Douglas County Correctional Center, where I went crazy, insane, clinically depressed, from missing my young son … and the bishop … he went golfing.

Dog-ass Catholic Church.

It is big and it will kill you.



(Oh, brother)

Palecek book covers, inside art pages by various artists:

Ben Heine, Allison M. Healy, Ian Ward, Russell Brutsche, Brian Barber, Monty Borror, Marylyn Felion, Robert Carter, Michael Paul Miller, Anthony LeTourneau, Jeremiah Palecek, Keith McHenry

The New American Dream Radio Show:

Bigfoot Howls: Actual Bigfoot howls (I think) that I recorded near our home in northern Minnesota:

And …
Like nine million and one other people in the United States I call myself a writer.

And like any writer I want to be read, that’s the main thing.

And thanks to my friend and radio show co-host, Chuck Gregory, who has been helping me since, well, way back when we put out The American Dream together and I drove my car all around the country, I have been able to make my books available.

Go here for Chuck’s CWG Press:

For a long time the books have been only print books, in the $15 or so range, which might be too much to afford.

Chuck is working to put all of my books in ebook form, which puts the price down to the $5 range if you like ebooks and have a way to read them.

Right now we have:
One Last Liberal Outlaw

Camp America


The American Dream

Speak English
available in ebook form, ready for ordering.

We have these books yet to put into ebook form:

Looking For Bigfoot

The Progrrressive Avenger

Terror Nation

Joe Coffee’s Revolution

The Truth

Johnny Moon

Iowa Terror
Guests of The Nation

FREE on Smashwords
The Bigfoot Chronicles

SWEAT: Global Warming in a Small Town & other tales of The Great American Westerly Midwest

Thanks for taking a look.


Fetzer & Barrett Give Us The Truth About 9/11, Sandy Hook, Boston

“I would meet with the most outlandish assertions from seemingly educated and intelligent persons. It was obvious they were parroting some piece of nonsense they had heard on the radio or read in the newspapers.

“Sometimes one was tempted to say as much, but on such occasions one was met with such a stare of incredulity, such a shock of silence, as if one had blasphemed the Almighty, that one realized how useless it was even to try to make contact with a mind which had become warped and for whom the facts of life had become what Hitler and Goebbels, with their cynical disregard for truth, said they were.”

— WILLIAM SHIRER, The Rise & Fall of The Third Reich


by Mike Palecek

There are those we depend on, who come running when we need help.

Like firemen.

But there are firemen in every town, every village. Everyone’s uncle has nine nephews who are firemen.

This is different.

Jim Fetzer and Kevin Barrett cover the entire United States.

They are Thomas Jefferson and Paul Revere in yellow coat, helmet and big boots — teaching us while ringing the bell.

They are always on-call, rarely take days off, and work years, decades without pay.

They are more important than a dance hall full of firemen.

Fetzer & Barrett are telling us the truth about America.

They are The Dynamic Duo.

While Americans dream 
of marshmallow clouds, lollipop lanes, and TV towns, the world wails, fists clenched, eyes blazing, tears streaming.

The Americans dream of rocket ships, fireworks, freedom and alleluia, while they sleep on through the alarm, the house afire.

So, put out the searchlight.

Make the call.

The British are here. …

The White Rose Resistance.
The American Resistance.

Both grow out of necessity.

Somebody had to do it.
No doubt it would fall to somebody.
No doubt somebody will do something.


Yes, probably, but up close it comes down to someone, some living, breathing, thinking, feeling person, beginning to understand, and then … beginning to do something.

Beginning to put self behind, career behind, safety behind.

Kevin Barrett and Jim Fetzer donned the name “The Dynamic Duo” when they hosted a radio show together.

Like the people in The White Rose Resistance movement in Nazi Germany who fought with words, by distributing leaflets, by expressing their opinion, Fetzer and Barrett do the same as they fight along with others against the American Empire whose existence can no longer be denied.

There is something that burns in the heart of people like these — Jim Fetzer, Kevin Barrett, Sophie Scholl, Hans Scholl, Alex Schmorell, Willie Graf, Christoph Probst, Kurt Huber — a fire that cannot ever really be extinguished.

Ridicule will not put it out, ignorance cannot put it out, suffering shall not put it out. It is an eternal flame that burns in the heart of people like these.

And we may take great comfort in knowing that the same thing that it is within them is inside of each of us, too.


“I’m going to tell the country you’re a nut and you hate your country.”

— Bill O’Reilly to Jim Fetzer as he was about to appear live on “The O’Reilly Factor”

“Teacher’s 9/11 views irk lawmakers”

— Chicago Tribune reporting on Kevin Barrett’s including 9/11 in a course on Islam

“Green, Nass renew call to UW to fire 9/11 conspiracy professor”

— Wisconsin State Journal on two State Senators’ vendetta against Kevin Barrett

“JFK, 9/11, Wellstone — were they all conspiracies?”

— Jim Fetzer and Kevin Barrett explain how we know that the answer is,”Yes!,” “Yes!” and “Yes!”

What could cause political figures and major newspapers to raise these objections?

George Orwell answered that question: “In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act”.

The Dynamic Duo:
White Rose Blooms in Wisconsin
Kevin Barrett, Jim Fetzer & The American Resistance

It all comes from that day, 22 November 1963, at 12:30 PM in Dallas.

From that day we got Oklahoma City, we got 9/11 and Afghanistan and Iraq.

From that day we get this day, today — our world, our lives — whatever is yet to come in Syria, Iran, Ukraine, perhaps even WWIII.

We can choose to watch it unfold on TV, or we can do something.

For years and years, Fetzer and Barrett have done everything they can.

This biography of Fetzer & Barrett also:

* Connects the dots between resistance efforts against the American Empire and the White Rose resistance against Hitler.

* Tells the truth about 9/11, Sandy Hook, the Boston bombings — false-flag attacks designed to soften the resistance to American dominance at home and abroad.

* Shows the way to understanding the world in which we live today — and points the way for a stronger and more democratic and just society.

Fetzer and Barrett — The Dynamic Duo — the face, the heart, the soul of the American Resistance to war, oppression, secrecy.

They are the real hope of America for real change.

They are the face of Jefferson, Paine, Franklin.

They look at our nation and speak truth.


WBAI Radio, New York City
Arts Express, with host Prairie Miller, Nov. 21, 2013
Jim Fetzer & Mike Palecek talk about “The Dynamic Duo”
(Segment is 15 min. from the end of the show)


(Oh, brother)

Palecek book covers, inside art pages by various artists:

Ben Heine, Allison M. Healy, Ian Ward, Russell Brutsche, Brian Barber, Monty Borror, Marylyn Felion, Robert Carter, Michael Paul Miller, Anthony LeTourneau, Jeremiah Palecek, Keith McHenry

The New American Dream Radio Show:

This week’s Guests, Thursday, May 8, 2014:

Jim Fetzer, Richard Flamer, Winston Wu.

Bigfoot Howls: Actual Bigfoot howls (I think) that I recorded near our home in northern Minnesota:

And ….
Like nine million other people in the United States I call myself a writer.

And like any writer I want to be read, that’s the main thing.

And thanks to my friend and radio show co-host, Chuck Gregory, who has been helping me since, well, way back when we put out The American Dream together and I drove my car all around the country, I have been able to make my books available.

Go here for Chuck’s CWG Press.

For a long time the books have been only print books, in the $15 or so range, which might be too much to afford.

Chuck is working to put all of my books in ebook form, which puts the price down to the $5 range if you like ebooks and have a way to read them.

Right now we have:

One Last Liberal Outlaw
Camp America
The American Dream
Speak English

… available in ebook form, ready for ordering.

We have these books yet to put into ebook form:

Looking For Bigfoot
The Progrrressive Avenger
Terror Nation
Joe Coffee’s Revolution
The Truth
Johnny Moon
Iowa Terror 
Guests of The Nation

FREE on Smashwords

The Bigfoot Chronicles

SWEAT: Global Warming in a Small Town & other tales of The Great American Westerly Midwest

Thanks for taking a look.

No Taxes For War; CANADA: No Soup For You


by Mike Palecek

It’s springtime in Minnesota and the Minnesota Wild are in the hockey playoffs.

And that makes everyone around here where we live, in northern Minnesota, think of book tours and tax protests and Canada.

There are a lot of ins and outs in this story, a lot of what have you’s, a lot of strands to keep in the old guy’s head, but I will try.

… A while back, in the Bush days and the Iraq war days, the post-911 days, very bad old days, I wrote “The American Dream,” a novel, to try to stop war and tell the truth about what really happened on Sept. 11, 2001. And then I borrowed a bunch of money, scheduled about 80 book tour stops all around the country and took off in an old Honda Accord with bumper stickers that said “Impeach Bush” and something else that I can’t remember.

Well, I wrote a column a day while on the road and Tony Sutton of Cold Type Magazine published them, in volumes I & II, because it took me two years to complete the tour.

One of those stops, on the Year I midwestern-eastern swing, was supposed to be Winnipeg, Ontario, Canada.

I had only been to Canada once before, that was in Vancouver, on a western trip with some friends after we had graduated from Wayne State College in Nebraska. Vancouver was so cool. Every single girl was beautiful and the bars were all in hotels. Everyone had pints stored on their tables and I think the idea was you could stay as long as you still had pints. That was so cool, we thought.

Well, I still had the picture in my mind of a big, round smiling face on the Canadian flag hoisting a warm pint of King Snedley’s when I tried to visit a second time, about twenty years later, in the Bad Days.

Oh … and on that book tour I carried around a copy of a letter to the IRS. Scroll way down to the bottom of this for that.

From Cold Type Magazine
editor, Tony Sutton
Road Trip I

Hello – and
goodbye – Canada

“Kid, have you rehabilitated yourself?”

I went over to the sargeant, said, “Sargeant, you got a lot a damn gall to ask me if I’ve rehabilitated myself, I mean, I mean, I’m sittin’ here on the bench, I mean I’m sittin here on the Group W bench ‘cause you want to know if I’m moral enough join the army, burn women, kids, houses and villages after bein’ a litterbug.”

– Arlo Guthrie, Alice’s Restaurant


I’m back.
Did you even notice I was gone?

I was in Canada from about 3:30 p.m. to about 5:15 p.m. this afternoon.

I was trying to get into Canada to go to my book reading in Winnipeg tonight at Mondragon Books.

They asked me at the window who I was, what I was doing, where I was going, what kind of books did I write, what I was thinking.

Umm, political fiction. Why?

Then they sent me inside. Park under the ramp.

Talk to the customs people, no, go over there instead, to the immigration folks.

I can do that. How you doing, eh?

How about that Red Green Show, huh? I mean, eh? You know him? I love that show. I want to move to Canada sometime. You folks seem like nice people. You count your votes, here, right? How do you feel about anthrax?

Do you have a passport?

Umm, no, I didn’t think you had … I thought that was next yea …

Birth certificate? How do I know you are really an American citizen if all you have is an Iowa driver’s license.

Hey. How about those Maple Leafs, huh? You skate? I can’t skate. I wish I could skate …

Have you ever been arrested?
… But I never learned.
… Yeah, I guess. Hey, lots of ducks around here, eh? I used to hunt. I don’t hunt anymore. Bet it gets cold up here.

Sit down. There.


Well, I guess you guys are stuck with me now. I always thought Canada was kind of an option. You know, go up there and sit in the park, feed bread crumbs to the moose.

But now it looks like this is kind of it.

Canada kicked me out because I have been to prison for protesting against the United States military at Offutt Air Force Base.

I thought they would appreciate something like that. I thought Canadians were different.


Well, the young woman immigration officer, agent, takes my papers, Iowa driver’s license, back to some room down the immigration hall and disappears for about half an hour, while “Mom & Pop Back To Winnipeg From The Winter In Miama” get high-fives from the immigration and customs staff, and I’m sitting over in the corner on the Group W bench.

The young woman Canadian person came back and told me to come through the swinging doors with her and please step into the second open door on the right.

One, two.

We sit down and she explains that I can pay $200 to make an application to get considered to enter Canada. Then the application will be studied and a determination will be made as to whether I have been “rehabilitated” enough to sit in a borrowed rowboat and drink Moosehead Beer.

Then I am escorted out of the building – young immigration woman keeps my dissolute Iowa driver’s license in her hand and tells me where I need to turn around to head back to wherever the hell I came from.

She will only hand me back my license as I pass by her on the sidewalk.

I then drive back the quarter mile or so to the United States immigration complex, a crew whose acquaintance I cannot wait to make.

The American Immigration Window Woman asks me why Canada won’t take me.

She directs me to Garage Number Two, where I wait until the door opens and American immigration man motions me inside.

He asks me why Canada won’t take me.

Mrs. American Immigration Woman stands close by. They both have on fresh protective gloves, kind of a robins-egg-blue.

He asks what air force base I protested at that got me sent to prison. I tell him.

He asks if I have ever been to Fort Benning, the School of the Americas.

I say no, but I would like to go there sometime. Mr. American Immigration Man, young fat blond boy with crewcut, does not smile.

He is fingering, smelling, the money in my billfold.

He directs me to “the waiting room.” I know that’s what it is because it says “The Waiting Room” on the door. I can see the chairs inside.

I go sit down in one of the chairs and look toward where Mr. & Mrs. American Immigration Persons are ruffling through my undies and political fiction books.

I can’t see them.
 Because of the one-way window.
 You can’t watch them as they search your vehicle.

I can hear slamming and clanking and something like dirty socks being sniffed by a drug-smelling Mrs. Immigration American Woman, and I try not to imagine her walking into The Waiting Room with a smile on her face holding a bag of marijuana.

And then they have me. They can put me in Leavenworth or Butterworth or whatever new below-ground federal prison they have these days, and they never have to hear me talking about how Bush did 9-11 and killed Wellstone, ever again.

The door opens.

Mr. New Immigration Man, the other one must have gone home for the day, says that I’m set to go.

Turn right and head back to wherever the hell you came from.

Can I have the paper from The Country Of Canada that says why I can’t come in?

No, we keep that.

I turn right, head back to Grand Forks.

I look at the sheet on my passenger seat that Miss Immigration Canadian Person Woman gave me.

It’s a list of Canadian Consulates in the United States.

That is where I need to send the $200 to get them to study me to see if I am rehabilitated enough to fish in a decent lake.

I wonder how they would make their determination.

Are you glad you broke the law?


Do you support the United States?

No, not really. We suck. Our military is a bunch of thugs, paid killers. No money should go to them. In fact, I sent in a crossed-out tax form to the IRS in Kansas City before I left home on this book tour.

Well, son, looks like you will never see Thunder Bay – ever, in your lifetime. I think we are through here. We’ll take those flapjacks with us, and the flannel shirt, the cedar logs.

I told the woman with a smile that I was not rehabilitated, while we were sitting inside the second open door on the right.

I thought, being Canadian and all, she would understand what I meant. I wouldn’t even try that line down the road with the Americans.

They’d be like, what? Go Packers.

I really thought Canada would be different.

You know, like another country.

Go Maple Leafs.

And, finally, here’s something

(circa 2008)

I was notified recently by the Internal Revenue Service that I have been fined $5,000 for “frivolous filing” of a tax document.

The story, quickly:

In the spring of 2007 and the spring of 2008 I took a book tour around the country. In 2007 I went east and in 2008 I went west.

Each time before I left home I sent a letter and a tax form to the IRS.

The forms each had a black Magic Marker “X” through them.

The letters indicated why I did not wish to cooperate with the United States of America.

It was symbolic. They had already received my money through paycheck withholding tax.

But even though merely symbolic, it’s something, some very little thing, in an effort to stand with those who have been stomped on by the government of George W. Bush, those in Iraq, and those in the United States, who have gone without health care, decent schools, roads, lived in poverty so that we might spread the American empire across the globe.

And it is now apparent that having a Democrat in the White House means only more of the same, a lesson we might have learned from living through the Clinton years, the bombing of Iraq, the sanctions on Iraq that killed millions, the increase in prison construction, the “reform” of welfare etc.

On the subject:

Howard Zinn’s recent article.
“House approves $96.7 billion to fund wars”

These people. These people have everything on their minds but public service.

My impression is they have power and the keeping of that power on their minds. We imagine that people who seek public office want to work for the social welfare and would naturally want to know the truth, but so often and for so many years we have been disappointed by putting our faith in our political leaders.

We have a semblance of representation, but not in reality.

Nobody asks you if you want to build more prisons. Nobody asks you if you want to bomb children in Iraq. Nobody asks you if you want your money to go to the poor, to schools, to roads.

Nobody ever asks.

So sometimes, sometimes you just have to tell them.

Every year we are asked to pay our taxes, send in our forms, pay for the bullets, the bombs that kill the children, the men and women.

We are given no choice.

Just as we were given no choice as children whether or not to rise before class and say the pledge of allegiance to America’s wars.

We’re not children anymore.

Our acquiesance has real consequence.

We pay to have people killed so that America and America’s businesses may expand influence and market area.

I don’t want to believe that.

I want to rather believe in the America I believed in when I walked alone into Mrs. Steele’s kindergarten class and saw written across the giant blackboard in gigantic white chalk letters: President John F. Kennedy.


They killed Kennedy and America has never been the same since.

But the ideal remains.

The dream of a good and just America remains.

We may never get there, but we must try.

We must try.

*When I was the Iowa Democratic Party candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives, Fifth District, in 2000, I sent a similar letter to the IRS. That year I walked from my home to Sioux City, taking about a week, to deliver the letter.

That year I also received letters from the IRS, saying I owed them $500 for frivolous filing. I received two of those letters, followed by a final letter that said they had decided to forget about the penalty.

Here are the letters from 2007, 2008:

March 1, 2008

Internal Revenue Service
3539 Southern Hills Drive
Sioux City, Iowa 51106


Enclosed is my tax form for this year.

It is crossed-out because I do not wish to cooperate with the government of George W. Bush.

President Bush has chosen to spend our tax dollars on war and killing while cutting spending on social programs.

As a Christian, I cannot go along with this.

I must protest.


Mike Palecek
702 6th Ave.
Sheldon, Iowa 51201

March 27, 2007

Internal Revenue Service
Kansas City, MO 64999-002


Enclosed is a crossed-out tax form.

I will not cooperate with the murderous regime of George W. Bush.

President Bush and his administration planned and carried out the attacks on the United States on 9-11-01, in order to attack Iraq and steal their oil.

In the eyes of Bush and Cheney and Rove, the war is going according to plan. They and their friends are making millions, billions, from the oil, from the defense industry, while the poor go without, while social services are cut in order to pay for more war and killing.

As a Christian, I cannot go along with this.

I must protest.

(circa now)
I recently recounted this in a conversation with my wife and my son. My son said, “I thought the idea was to pay less in taxes.” I said, well, maybe I didn’t think it out too well. We laughed.
But I did. I thought it out. I thought it out, that it was something, the best I could do. Yep, we ended up paying the fine, people had to help us, all that.
But it was something.
Not great. Something.

More info:
War Tax Resisters Fund:

Des Moines Register: Iowa War Protester Takes Stand Against IRS




(Oh, brother)

Palecek book covers, inside art pages by various artists

Ben Heine, Allison M. Healy, Ian Ward, Russell Brutsche, Brian Barber, Monty Borror, Marylyn Felion, Robert Carter, Michael Paul Miller, Anthony LeTourneau, Jeremiah Palecek, Keith McHenry

The New American Dream Radio Show:

This week’s Guests, Thursday, May 8, 2014:

Jim Fetzer, Richard Flamer, Winston Wu.

Bigfoot Howls: Actual Bigfoot howls (I think) that I recorded near our home in northern Minnesota:

And ….
Like nine million other people in the United States I call myself a writer.

And like any writer I want to be read, that’s the main thing.

And thanks to my friend and radio show co-host, Chuck Gregory, who has been helping me since, well, way back when we put out The American Dream together and I drove my car all around the country, I have been able to make my books available.

Go here for Chuck’s CWG Press.

For a long time the books have been only print books, in the $15 or so range, which might be too much to afford.

Chuck is working to put all of my books in ebook form, which puts the price down to the $5 range if you like ebooks and have a way to read them.

Right now we have:

One Last Liberal Outlaw
Camp America
A Perfect Duluth Day
The American Dream
Speak English

… available in ebook form, ready for ordering.

We have these books yet to put into ebook form:

Looking For Bigfoot
The Progrrressive Avenger
Terror Nation
Joe Coffee’s Revolution
The Truth
Johnny Moon
Iowa Terror 
Guests of The Nation

FREE on Smashwords

The Bigfoot Chronicles

SWEAT: Global Warming in a Small Town & other tales of The Great American Westerly Midwest

Thanks for taking a look.

A Letter From Daniel Berrigan


“Sometime in your life, hope that you might see one starved man, the look on his face when the bread finally arrives. Hope that you might have baked it or bought or even kneaded it yourself. For that look on his face, for your meeting his eyes across a piece of bread, you might be willing to lose a lot, or suffer a lot, or die a little, even.”

— Daniel Berrigan

by Mike Palecek

I owe my life to Dan Berrigan.

For good or for bad.

I think for good.

I drove from a smallish, conservative town in northeast Nebraska in January 1979 to begin seminary at the College of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota.

In February or March, Berrigan was speaking at Macalaster College, up Summit Avenue a few blocks at a Vietnam Symposium, whatever that means, along with Eugene McCarthy and a journalist named Gloria Emerson.

Anyway, I went, and I heard, and I walked up to him afterward to introduce myself and ask a stupid question.

A couple of us ended up driving Dan around town that night, to a church to hear John Trudell speak about the FBI burning his family in their home, then over to a TV station where Daniel Schorr was hosting a discussion between Berrigan and some guy from the Kennedy administration. I think it was Ted Sorenson.

They let me into this one room and pointed at a table full of food. I could graze as long as we were there. Have at it church boy.

Berrigan also came over to the seminary and spoke to us, about Vietnam, prison, the United States, the Catholic Church.

I was enthralled. I had never heard this stuff before, and likely would not have ever heard it in my seminary instruction.

Well, on a home visit I asked the parish priest who had hooked me up with the seminary, Fr. Walter Nabity.

I asked him about Berrigan and protesting and nuclear weapons and war and all that.

Fr. Nabity told me to forget about the protests, stick to my studies, stay away from the likes of Berrigan.

Well, I was confused.

I told Berrigan what Nabity had said. Dan wrote back to me. [Below]

Over Easter vacation, on Berrigan’s invitation, two of us took a train to Washington, D.C. for a Holy Week retreat and protest. We stayed at the Church of St. Stephen in northwest D.C.

There were lots of “famous” folks from the peace movement there that week, that I only found out were famous, within the peace movement, over the following years: Richard McSorley, Sr. Anne Montgomery, Art Laffin, Elizabeth McAlister, Fr. Carl Kabat.

And of course, Phil Berrigan. I remember going up to Phil and asking him a stupid question. He was wearing this army coat. He took me to the middle of the church and sat with me. He listened to my questions.

“What’s a nuke?”

And we talked about the Catholic Church, celibacy, marriage, prison, the United States, the military, Thou Shall Not Kill. Lots of stuff. And he took the time to talk to me.

I don’t think I’ll ever forget that.

It was pretty cool. We planned these protests at the White House — Jimmy Carter’s administration — and the Pentagon, and some people went to the Department of Energy, too.

We boarded the bus in small groups so that it would not appear to be a suspicious big group.

We went through the White House visitor tour line in those small groups and inside we looked at tables and tablecloths and silverware, and I tried to not look like someone who needed to be apprehended and returned to Nebraska.

The tour exited out onto a porch. And then those who were doing the protest took out banners from their purses or coats and held them out.

Fr. Carl Kabat poured blood on the pillars and was put into a headlock and hauled away. I got a good picture of that.

And then we went over to the Pentagon and held signs, slept on the floor of the church, ate vegetarian vegetables, then got on the train and went back to Minnesota, never to be the same again.

I think for the better.

I ended up leaving the seminary. On my way out the door I posted a manifesto on the bulletin board by the front door and the elevators, something about how I couldn’t stay at a rich Catholic school, that I had to go be with the poor, now.

A friend who went on to be ordained for the Omaha archdiocese later told me my bulletin board manifesto was weird. It probably was.

I know for one thing, that I really liked the idea of hanging out with these famous guys who had been on the front pages of all the big newspapers in the 1960s. It made me feel important.

But I don’t think the Berrigans and others felt that way. Not at all. I think they did it because they feel it in their guts.

And I think I take away the best part of all that today, the part about the importance of standing with the poor and against war.

In the end, there is no glitter that sticks to that. It’s your lonely self in a prison cell and it’s a family on a hot hillside outside of Pine Ridge trying to live.

That is what you feel in your heart when you hear this message and you want to be a part of it. And you walk that way. Sometimes you run. Sometimes you try to run too fast and maybe you fall. But that doesn’t matter. You get up and try to keep going.

I ended up going to New York City to work at the Catholic Worker on the Bowery for a while, then Ruth and I got married.

I went to prison myself. I remember being in the hole in Chicago MCC, the federal prison downtown. I was having a rough, rough time.

The guard comes up to my window with this quizzical look on his face. He has this letter asking for my release, signed by Fr. Daniel Berrigan and one million other Jesuits. The guard looked at me like, who are you?

Well, I am nobody, but I know somebody. How about another slice of that shitty bread?

Well, for me, I went to prison, went crazy, went home.

I thank Dan Berrigan for taking the time to talk to me, for one thing, when so many people were clamoring for his attention, and for having the heart and soul and wisdom to know what the truth is, and passing it along.

Back in Norfolk I only had “Choice A” as to how to look at life.

After going to St. Paul, I had “Choice B” as well, and that really makes all the difference.

— Mike



Letter from Daniel Berrigan

Sept. 21, 1979


I was happy to hear from you. I’m sorry, though, that things have become so unclear in your thoughts since we met and you came East for the protests.

I think your parish priest is full of baloney. Please don’t hesitate to tell him so, if you want to.

He reminds me of all the cutout-clerics I’ve met over the years who went on to get their degrees while innocent children died in Vietnam and many of us went to prison.

I don’t envy him his degrees from Harvard and Columbia. I’ve lectured on both places and find them rich centers of moral retardation.

As for people getting paid to protest, it’s here that the baloney goes rancid. Our payment was years in prison to protest the killing; his payment was something else again.

I hope someday he picks up the New Testament and gets some light on the life, imprisonment and death of Jesus. Also on some texts like, “love one another, as I have loved you.”

Well, enough of that. If I am angry, it’s at his defamation of those I love. He sounds as though any outrage in the world would find him indifferent among his books and degrees. I just wonder what sort of advice someone like him is capable of giving someone like you.

As far as the cult talk goes, I think your seminary is closer to the cult reality than Jonah House. There, you and other young people seem to be being brainwashed — cleansed of all traces of the gospel and of Christ, in order to prepare for a safe and pallid clerical future, in which you can go on to advise other young folks against becoming Christians and witnesses. How’s that for turning things around?

Any place (like Harvard, Columbia, or St. Thomas) that is neglecting to give young people a vision of life, faith, a human future, doesn’t deserve to go on. I hope you leave there. I hope you find a community that is not lost in fantasy and immaturity with its mutterings of Communism and cults.

That’s all so much useless bullshit. It has absolutely nothing to do with Christ or our Church. In fact, it’s like a so-called religious branch of the State Department or the Pentagon, peddling the kind of religion that will allow murder to be legitimized, nukes to be created, the innocent and poor to be wiped out.

I thought, when I came to your seminary, Mike, something better might be in the air. (Usually I avoid such places like the plague.) Evidently I was wrong. But for Christ’s sake, don’t condemn yourself to such a future.

Come back and see us when you want. You’ll always be welcome. Meantime, we go on with the work of non-violence, responsibility, hope.

— Daniel

A Letter From Johnny Carson


by Mike Palecek

I am an American. I have big dreams.

And like the rest of us, I have been damaged beyond repair by television. Look at me. I am a mess.

I grew up on TV and eating … ice cream … ice cream bars … ice cream sandwiches … sitting on the floor of our home on Sixth Street in Norfolk, Nebraska … watching TV. I weighed four hundred pounds by the time I was in fourth grade. No problem. Get bigger pants.

I knew my ice cream.

And I knew all about Barney, Goober, Andy, Gunsmoke, I Dream Of Jeannie, My Favorite Martian.

Who can forget Bonanza — the episode Hoss And The Leprechauns. A classic. Like Grapes of Wrath.

We always watched Johnny Carson, of course. He was from Norfolk, graduated from Norfolk High School. Hometown boy who done good. Very good.

I’d lay on the floor facing the TV, a bowl of chocolate swirl in front of me, rolling over on my back during the commercials to shovel in a few scoops, then roll back for more instruction from Don Rickles, Frank Sinatra, Burt Reynolds, Bob Newhart, Bob Hope, Brian Keith.

In the forward for my novel The American Dream I talk about my parents, Milosh and Isabel. They were Czech and Irish. They moved to Norfolk from Winner, South Dakota when dad got his big break to be an engineer for the Chicago & Northwestern Railroad.

They grabbed each other in the South Dakota wind and held on.

They were true believers in the American dream, I suppose, though they would not have put it that way.


Milosh, Isabel, grandma Josie on couch.
In front, Rosemary, Donna.
Not pictured, Connie, me.

More likely they just believed in working and going to church and mowing the lawn and taking care of your car and watching the ball game or Bonanza if it was on.

Dad spent part of his career on the Long Pine run, staying overnight at the motel near the tracks and fishing for trout.

He brought fish home and maybe a foul ball from the amateur games in Winner when he got a chance to go there and see his brother Jimmy, home from the Pacific war, now with a wife and his own family.

Another brother, Albert, served with Patton and later went to South Omaha to work in a box factory.

Frank went to California. Molly just went away. Dad didn’t go to the war because his job with the railroad was considered vital to the war effort.

They said Dad was good enough at shortstop to go pro, but he didn’t. Maybe he had to work. Hauled cases at the pop factory before the C&NW.

They did the best they could. It’s sad, a sad state of affairs for a whole nation.

Everyone does the best he can and we end up bombing Hiroshima. Dad cuts the lawn each Saturday morning on his one chance to rest and there go a thousand people in Chile, mowed down by our own CIA.

Mom calls us in to supper and poof! Laos is toast.

Us kids sneak outside for another round of playing after supper. We play hide and seek, catch lightning bugs, tell ghost stories and leave the screen door open just a peep.

A couple hundred intelligent poor people in El Salvador are hustled out of their beds and shot.

In Norfolk the media was The Norfolk Daily News, WJAG Radio and the Omaha World-Herald.

There is no way for someone just growing up, or someone who has not been much of anywhere else to know that those outlets distort the news. They tell the story in the way they want it to be told.

We suffered and bled along with the perils of Otis The Drunk, but did not have a clue about the people being murdered by our own government in Chile. And nobody told us. We weren’t supposed to know.

There really is no way of knowing — not some fat kid who only has eyes for Strawberry Swirl — that what is on TV is not great and true and the only real reality worth understanding.

It wasn’t until I left Norfolk, to go to the seminary in Minnesota, then Washington, D.C., then New York, later prison, that I began to understand what a warped vision and body my upbringing had saddled me with.

Later on, I even questioned Johnny Carson himself.

I studied the JFK assassination and learned that attorney Jim Garrison had been a guest on The Tonight Show, talking about his investigation. I listened to the recording on the internet of Carson grilling Garrison.

I found Carson’s address and wrote to him, asking him, Norfolkan-to-Norfolkan — what is going on here?

March 2, 2001

Johnny Carson
c/o Carson Productions Group
3110 Main St.
Suite 200
Santa Monica, CA 90405

Mr. Carson:


I am originally from Norfolk, Nebr., graduated from NHS in 1973. Recently I had a chance to listen to the tape of your interview with attorney Jim Garrison. I don’t recall watching the live interview, but very well could have as watching your show before bed was our regular routine, as it was for many others.

As a fellow Norfolkan, I am curious as to why you treated Garrison as you did. I probably will not get the chance to contact you twice, so I will be frank right away.

You sounded as if you were acting as a spokesman for someone else. Really. Were you protecting the real killers of Kennedy?

Of course, you were. What else can I say, but that it is obvious now with almost forty years of perspective. The Warren Commission was a joke and Garrison was on to something.

Something frightening to be sure. But why did you have so much allegiance to the plotters and none to your dead president? Because he could not pay you from the grave? Is it as simple as that?

Thanks in part to you we have been forced to live in Disneyland since 1963, where everything is unreal, everything entertainment and illusion.

Please tell me, as I will never know myself: Is wealth and power worth the sublimation of the truth?

Thank you for your time.

Mike Palecek

Johnny Carson’s Response:

March 9, 2001

Mike Palecek
702 6th Avenue
Sheldon, Iowa 51201

Dear Mr. Palecek,

I’m sending you a copy of a letter I recently received to make you aware that some ignorant asshole is sending out letters over your signature.

You should look into this.

Johnny Carson

Leonard Peltier and Me


by Mike Palecek

My family is from South Dakota. My mother and father grew up in Winner, South Dakota, home of Frank Leahy, the famous Notre Dame coach.

They moved to Nebraska later. That’s where I was born. But Nebraska is not that far from South Dakota.

I remember an uncle from Winner visiting us in Norfolk once. At the time of this story he was the only surviving Palecek brother. He served in the Navy, in the Pacific, during World War II.

Once Jimmy was telling a story and as an aside said something about noticing “a dead buck in the ditch.”

He didn’t mean a deer. He meant an Indian.

And then he went on with his story, and we all just listened. No big deal, I guess.

As a small-town journalist in the early ’90s in southeast Minnesota, I was the publisher of a tiny newspaper along with my wife, Ruth, and I assigned myself to drive to Leavenworth, Kansas to interview Leonard Peltier.

His case was then being reviewed by the federal appeals court in Saint Paul.

I walked up the steps to the penitentiary that I had walked up just months before as a scared, chained prisoner in the rain at midnight.

I talked to Leonard, face to face, with the guard standing close by.

I then drove to Minneapolis to talk to the head of the Midwest FBI office, the same man who had just months before been the head of the Omaha FBI office and had been pursuing me as I was underground after skipping a federal court date for protesting at Offutt Air Force Base in lieu of seeking sanctuary in the Omaha Cathedral, a scheme to try to get the Omaha bishop to speak out against war, nuclear weapons, to no avail.

Okay, I sat with Nick O’Hara in the FBI office, and on the way in, on the wall, were the photos of the two agents, Ron Williams and Jack Coler, who were killed at Oglala, supposedly by Leonard Peltier.

I had spent a lot of time studying the case, read In The Spirit of Crazy Horse, knew something about the ballistics evidence, the shell casings.

I listened to O’Hara tell me point-blank eye to eye, that Peltier did it, that he was a murderer, and that the shell casings found were proof, etc.

I admit that when I left I didn’t know who was telling the truth. I talked to FBI agents in Rochester, Minnesota, about eight miles from where we were living and had our newspaper in Byron.

One had been at Wounded Knee, the other in the office was the infamous David Price, but he was not in the office on the day that I visited.

And I called a Goon from Pine Ridge, and interviewed him on the phone. I think his name was David Brewer. Not sure who else I talked to, but it was everyone I could think of.

And I wrote this long, detailed article for our weekly with 1,100 circulation, along with a photo of Peltier that was too light, not the right flash or the right whatever under the enlarger in our basement darkroom.

I received a letter from O’Hara inviting me to his FBI retirement party. Is that weird or what? He had been chasing me months before. In the Omaha World-Herald that I read in a cafe while being pursued, I read that O’Hara had likened me to Charles Starkweather.

Well, I continued to pay attention.

I traveled to Oglala, to the Jumping Bull Compound where the shootout occurred. I stood in the spot where the agents had died by their car. From my reading I could look around and imagine how it had happened, and where Peltier and Robideux and Butler and the others had miraculously escaped. Very cool.

[I just said “Compound.” That’s just what the FBI wants us to think, to say. It was a ranch, a farm, their home.]

I later ran for Congress, got the Democratic Party nomination for the U.S. House for my district. I wrote to O’Hara, now working for the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension in St. Paul.

I told him that I thought he was lying, and that if I ever got to Congress I would serve with a very dim view of the FBI.

Why had I decided that he was lying? I don’t really know. I guess I just decided. I guess I just decided in my heart that O’Hara was the liar, and that Peltier was the hero freedom-fighter.

That’s allowed.

You can just decide what you believe. That’s what I did.

He wrote back saying that I had regressed, gone back to my protester-days mentality.

Thank God.

Leonard Peltier is a common man, a good old boy, of sorts, that’s my impression.

He is also a hero.

He fought the FBI, the U.S.A. He fought for the poor, against a government that wanted to bulldoze yet another bunch of nobody’s in order to get uranium to make whatever, to make yet more money.

And Peltier and the rest said, uh-huh, not gonna happen.

He puts me to shame, puts us to shame. That’s what I think now.

I wonder if or when Leonard Peltier dies in prison how many of us will think “it’s just another dead buck in the ditch.”

No Newspaper or Radio Station or TV Station Will Ever Talk About It


by Mike Palecek

I waited my whole life to read James W. Douglass’ new book, “JFK And The Unspeakable.”

The wait was not worth it.

I should not have had to wait, at all.

This is supposed to be America, but it is not.

That is why I was made to wait.

Americans should not have to wait.

We like to have it right now. We want what we want when we want it.



Sister Ellen walked into our third grade classroom, hands tucked neatly into the opposite brown sleeve.

She was the principal at Sacred Heart elementary, and she only came to the classrooms to announce that the poorest kid in our class and his large family had run off a bridge this morning on the way to school, or lead us down to the gym for the Christmas movie and extra chocolate milk.

So on Nov. 22, 1963, when lean, tall, straight Ellen floated in just after lunch recess — pre-Vatican II sisters had no feet, legs, arms, no hair — we saw the Franciscan specter of death.

Later, Mom ironed while she watched the caisson and “Black Jack,” the riderless horse, on the black and white television in the front room.

This was Norfolk, Nebraska.

The Norfolk Daily News and WJAG told us it was Oswald. We just assumed, along with the Omaha World-Herald, that the Warren Commission had been commissioned by God.

Hometown hero Johnny Carson grilled an actual hero, attorney Jim Garrison, because Garrison had the gall to think for himself.

Then followed days and decades of lies.

My mother and I watched out the back door at the turn of the `70s, toward the railroad track, to see if Dad might go past, while grandma Josie sat in her room in the dark, afraid to speak at all.

My dad died to open the `80s, the day before Ruth and I were married.

Football on TV, and lies.

Pot roast on Sunday, with lies.

Turkey and dressing for Thanksgiving. White lies? Dark lies?

Most recently Peter Jennings and ABC News felt the need to cement the lies some forty years after the Kennedy coup.

The program includes a computer-generated reconstruction of the shooting that confirms that Oswald was the lone gunman. And it finds no persuasive evidence of a conspiracy to kill the president.

Through it all, through the fog of American cultural propaganda, some persisted, some wanted the truth, some like Oliver Stone in “JFK” in 1991, hit hard enough to make the ground quiver for a moment, crack in some places.

But the cracks were quickly filled by volunteers with footballs, turkey, dressing, cranberries, credulity.

Now comes James W. Douglass, long-time peace activist, professor, Catholic Worker.

Why is his book the one I’ve been waiting for?

Maybe it’s because of the flood of new information, at least new to me.

Maybe it’s the way Douglass lays it out, on the line, straight and true, brick by brick, looking us in the eye and telling us it was the CIA who killed John F. Kennedy.

And that it was because of money.

Of course.

Is there something else?

I’m not an assassination expert.

I am an expert in living in America.

I am a Ph.D in suffering through America, its propaganda, its holiday dinners, football afternoons, coffee conversations, newspaper articles, television news shows, entertainment shows.

If there were one thing worth listening to or hearing out of all those, there would be no need to excuse oneself to go stand in the garage smoking hidden cigarettes, holding the knife at your neck, then putting the cigarettes back into the hiding spot and the knife as well, and going back, to try once more to think and live and act as an American.

I happen to hold several advanced degrees in American Culture — years and decades spent sitting in comfortable chairs wearing new Christmas pajamas, balancing a Jethro Bowl of cherry black walnut ice cream in my lap, seeking enlightenment by watching Johnny Carson, Don Rickles, Dean Martin, Ed McMahon.

And then going to bed convinced beyond any reasonable doubt there is nothing more.

This is what there is.

This is life.

All there is to see and know is what I can see in my peripheral vision while watching Big Red Football, Gunsmoke, Mayberry RFD, Happy Days, Survivor.

That is all our Norfolk High School “U.S. History” books, all my parents, Isabel and Milosh, the parish priests, mailman have to tell us.

They were my Socrates and I was their Plato, and in our daily discourse I learned not to ask certain questions.

Over the years and decades I had it drilled into me the beauty and wonderment and majesty that the rain was good for the farmers and that it would get cold again this winter.

In the Athens that I imagined Norfolk to be, with its Central Park band pavilion and its “world’s largest stockyard,” which was also a lie, I learned not to learn.

But now … an unknown stone falls from the sky.

Well … someone pick it up.

What’s this?

There is more?

A lot more.

The land of the free and the home of the brave murders its own presidents when they threaten the men with the money, like the ones who contributed to the schools we grew up in and the newspapers and the …

Oh, my.

The amber waves of grain will roll right over you, your children, your house if you stand in their path in any meaningful way.

Murder, Inc.

The business of America is business.

To protect and to serve.

We will kill you and you and your sons and daughters, grandmothers to get what we want.

What we want is to eat and watch television in the dark.

While we grow wrinkles trying to figure out two plus two, those who have made that their profession, manipulate … everything.

We vote and we work and we study and we worry about our children having Ho Ho’s in their lunchbox and friends on the bus.

And we pay money earned on our knees to hire men and women to kill leaders and overthrow governments to make more money for those who built our schools and run our newspapers, and …

And if those people also decide that our president should die, then we can do that too.

And we pay to have that done. Like having the carpet cleaned, the lawn mowed, the oil changed.

And no newspaper or radio station or TV station will ever talk about it.

Unless telling us that it never happened.

And we will believe them.

Because not believing them means figuring out something else to believe.

And we have things to do. We have lives … to live.

And those lives mean nothing, less than nothing, because they are built, constructed … days laid down unevenly, brick by brick … on lies and murder.

Lies. Murder.

Lies. Killing.

Lies. Death.

And it goes on and on as if it will never stop.

And then one unexpected day, along comes a brave man, like those brave men murdered, who is not like the weak men with the lies.

And everything changes.

A revolution without guns.

A cultural revolution, an undelicate purging of turkey and cranberries, a detoxification.

A new enlightenment, like the one that spawned the men who made this country — that the recent men have destroyed.

And the time does not seem quite so long.

Then and now are connected. Brought together.

Come together.

And now maybe.

Maybe our children will not live within lies, houses of lies, schools of lies, lives of lies.

Just maybe.

JFK And The Unspeakable
By James W. Douglass
Orbis Books, 2008

Fighting For Freedom


by Mike Palecek

Charlie Johnson is the main character in Terror Nation. Charlie is a former sports reporter for a small Iowa daily.

After he retires he begins to write anti-Bush letters to the editor.

He is taken to the local mental hospital for a “check-up.”

Here is one of Charlie’s letters to the Saint Smith paper.


Dear Editor:

I have a neighbor across the street.

We have watched each other out our front windows for forty years.

Their son played ball in our yard.

Last week that son’s boy came home in a body bag in a box in the belly of a big Boeing, back from Baghdad.

That is nothing to “b” joking about.

I am not.

But I will not “b” quiet, either.

I have talked to my neighbors since then, on the sidewalk in front of the house, and again on the side steps of St. Mark’s after Mass.

They say Timothy died because he loved freedom.

That’s nonsense. He loved basketball.

They say he had his head blown off his shoulders, his legs cut off at the knees, lost his hands, to make us free.

Of course, that’s not true. But what else do a heart-broken grandmother and grandfather have to hold on to?

Someone needs to speak for Timothy, perhaps speak to him, to tell him the truth, because we lied to him his whole life.

Timothy died because of us.

Me. You.

We told him it was good to go.

Fr. Cyril, either by his legendary silence, or the flag next to the altar, said it was good to go kill children and call that fighting for freedom.

She never met Timothy, but Cindy Sampson, our new editor from Iowa State, told him the same by the stories she ran, and the headlines and the photos and editorials, so patriotic, so deceptive, so self-serving.

We all told him, go, go, it’s a good thing to do.

We whispered, go kill, go shoot, go murder and steal, and we’ll all call it “fighting for freedom.”

And when we hear in the big city newspapers and TV after thousands and thousands have died that there was no reason to die — we’ll dig our heels in the front lawn grass and still call it fighting for freedom.

And when our grandchildren hit the ball into the graveyard and come back and ask us about the headstone with the flag on it and the same last name as theirs — who was that?

We’ll bite our tongues and clench our fists and look anywhere but into their trusting eyes, and we’ll tell them Timothy died fighting for our freedom.

Terror Nation, Mainstay Press, 2006

“Notes … from the perimeter”


by Mike Palecek

Good morning on Good Friday.

I know, right?

It snowed again Wednesday, maybe four inches. Snowblower has a flat tire. Will have to scoop or get the tire fixed or wait on the sun.

I wanted to respond a little to the feedback I have received this week regarding some of my pieces.

1) Re: “Are you serious about killing yourself.”

Well, no and yes.

In the piece I wrote I said, “I was going to kill myself, but then I didn’t.”

I was being flippant.

(I also had no idea that Michael Ruppert had actually already killed himself a few days before.)

But without going into great boring detail, I think that I have paid my dues to be able to joke about depression and hopelessness. It was hyperbole for the good of the column, but I did go through long stretches this winter.

Who didn’t? And you wonder sometimes, what’s the use? You just do. Or at least I do. But you keep going, because that’s what people do. If at all possible, that is. Deep depression is no joke. I did not have that this winter.

I do not remember exactly what that is like, who would want to, but I recognize it when it shows up at the door.

2) Re: “Killing George Bush”

-please remove me from your mailing list. Thank you.


-Thanks, but no thanks. Please unsubscribe

– I would sure hate to be you. It is so sad to be filled with so much hate and anger. Get away from your computer and go out a get a life.

Sent from my iPhone

From Lydia Howell, a KFAI radio show host:

I think it’s a dumb idea to have a subject line like this “KILLING GEORGE BUSH”. It doesn’t make you a radical & it just draws negative attention.
Please reconsider such a foolish action in the future.

From Jim Fleming in New York City:

HI Mike, Just a head’s up about this piece. We published a story called “Killing the President” some years ago, and got a warning from the Feds about it, and this was in pre 9/11 days… Ya gotta be careful with this topic, or else ready to deal with some real shit…. Abrazos, Jim

… Well, I am half expecting federal agents to be pounding on the door at 5 am. That’s when they come. That’s what happened once in Omaha in the 1980s, also in response to something I wrote.

Of course, it’s serious. It’s also not. It’s fiction.

It’s meant to be art, to bring about a discussion of issues that would otherwise not be talked about in ways that only fiction, art can do.

Please read my comments at the bottom of the post, and then read KGB and let’s talk about why we let some people die as they do and live as they do, while we wave to others as they pass by in the parade.

And, if you love KGB, I think you will also love K Joe Stalin and K Idi Amin.


My post titled “Boston Wrong” got this response from a website named after the White Rose student resisters of Nazi Germany:

“Mike Palecek, you are being removed from this group for rules violation. Your promoting a softly written right wing conspiracy ideology in many of your writings and that is something this group will not abide and THIS sir, is frankly offensive.”

And this from Eric Chandler of the Lake Superior Writers group:

“I disagree with your writing Mike. However I’d love to see you share it face to face with people who lost family on 911. And with those who are missing arms and legs and family members in Boston. That would be a hoot.

ME: Eric, hello and thanks for comment. I do think that people died on 911. I just don’t think it was perpetrated by Muslims with box cutters. The government story is a lie. With Boston, I don’t think anyone died or lost limbs. I respectfully submit that in this case it would be helpful if you would do a little more study. I know how that sounds, but if you could go here and read I do think it would help. (memoryholeblog – James Tracy)

Eric Chandler: I swore to support and defend the Constitution from all enemies foreign and domestic. You are exercising your right to look just as ridiculous as you want. I wish you had a larger forum so more people could hear your opinions.

ME: If you are serious about that you need to look at the Bushes, Clinton, Obama. These are your/our real enemies.

Eric Chandler: Sorry, I have to go back to actual studying. Plus, I misplaced my tin-foil hat.

4) And in response to a portion of the “Bart Is Dead” piece where I asked why liberal bloggers do not seem to want to ‘go there’ on 9/11, Boston, Sandy Hook, etc., I got this from Mark Karlin a liberal blogger for Buzzflash/Truthout.

i see no reason to talk about 9/11 conspiracy theory
the world is imploding
the corporations run the world economy
we have a duopoly party running our nation
most of us are getting poorer and poorer
i’ll write till i die, but what is writing about 9/11 now going to do to save the Earth?

… And, so … I’m trying to understand why people don’t understand.

This quote was not sent to me by Karen Kwiatkowski. I found it somewhere, but it helps me to understand a little what is going on:

“I have been told by reporters that they will not report their own insights or contrary evaluations of the official 9/11 story, because to question the government story about 9/11 is to question the very foundations of our entire modern belief system regarding our government, our country, and our way of life.

“To be charged with questioning these foundations is far more serious than being labeled a disgruntled conspiracy nut or anti-government traitor, or even being sidelined or marginalized within an academic, government service, or literary career.

“To question the official 9/11 story is simply and fundamentally revolutionary. In this way, of course, questioning the official story is also simply and fundamentally American.”


Another Note: Please take a look at Jim Fetzer’s latest on Veterans Today, evidence that Sandy Hook elementary was not even a functioning school.

…. it’s all a play, a skit, a hoax, psychological operations in the US on US citizens.

They have done it elsewhere for decades. Why not here? Of course here.

Especially here. …


On Thursday on the radio show one of our guests was Norman Thomas Marshall, an actor from New York who performs a play telling the life of the activist John Brown. You should be able to find the recording of that show either on Youtube or the Revolution Radio Network or here:

We talked about doing the right thing, violence for goodness’ sake, the historical relevance and perceptions of Brown. I just think John Brown is a fascinating person. Also Norman Thomas Marshall.

… During the recent standoff between the federal government and ranchers in Nevada – one of the ranchers reportedly said, “they will fire the first shot heard around the world and we’ll fire the rest.”

I am hoping that we will overturn this corrupt government by telling the truth.

About OKC, Waco, 9/11, Sandy Hook, Boston, all the fake terror events – JFK, RFK, MLK, Wellstone, the fake events that lead us into war – Vietnam – Iraq – the deception we take on to spread our influence around the globe in order to increase our wealth, and by doing that make others more poor, step on their backs and push their faces into the ground.

That’s what I’m hoping – by words to make revolution. …

… But I would also add … you just never know.


I work at a group home.

We had a training session last week, called “Customer Service.” After it was over I asked the trainer, who is also the regional director, or no, I guess I told her: This would all make more sense if we got raises, which we do not.

She asked if I had written to my state legislator regarding the push to raise the Minnesota minimum wage to $9.50. I said I had not, but why shouldn’t the raises come from within the company, why ask the state to pay for raises.

The workers scramble to exist on $10 an hour, and if we are serious about really caring for these people, why pay the ones who have the most contact with them a slave wage?

If we are serious, why not ask the guy at the start of the training video, the head of the company, to share what he has made from the residents and allow the workers to live a more human existence.

She responded: That’s communism.

We need a group home workers union in Duluth.


Ebook project:

Chuck Gregory and I are working to put my books into more affordable ebook format. Right now we have The American Dream, KGB, A Perfect Duluth Day, and Camp America or Love & Bigfoot In The Time of Swine Flu in ebook format on

Speak English is available on Smashwords.

SWEAT … global warming in a small town and other tales of The Great American Westerly Midwest is FREE on Smashwords, along with The Bigfoot Chronicles, and the others in the “In A Small Town” series: Dumb Guys … hunting in a small town; HOLY CRAP! … religion in a small town; White Picket Fences … Homeland Security in a small town; and Popguns & Pacemakers … patriotism in a small town.


New book project

Chuck Gregory and I recently completed a book project. Well, not recently, last fall. “The Dynamic Duo: White Rose Blooms in Wisconsin, Kevin Barrett, Jim Fetzer & The American Resistance” is available on Amazon.

The second book in this series is now in the works. It will deal with all these false flag events we have been having in the United States post-911, all these seemingly fake events that must have some sort of purpose, right?

The third in the trilogy — all published by Chuck Gregory’s CWG Press — will ask questions about the alleged moon landing, and the deaths of John Lennon and Paul McCartney, as well as the holocaust.



This is the original New American Dream website, begun in 2009. It got hacked, or something, but there is still good stuff there.


Saturday – going to the woods, I hope if I can get in with the snow. Really need snowshoes. I will be looking for Bigfoot, as always. The truth. It’s out there.

Last week – snow inside my rubber boots, like feet caked in ice, couldn’t get boots off, then I did.

Happy Easter. Have a nice weekend. We are headed to Minneapolis.

Thank you for taking a look here and for listening to the New American Dream Radio Show. It is all much appreciated.

– Mike


KGB front cover

from KGB (Killing George Bush)

by Mike Palecek

… as performed by Chuck Gregory & Mike Palecek, “The News From Mount Liberty,” on The New American Dream Radio show

“Well, it has been another long week in Mount Liberty, Nebraska, my hometown.

You might have seen that George H.W. Bush still lives.

That old snake that we saw sneering in the backroom on the night his son was dishonestly named President of The United States.

The one who lied that he was out of the loop.

The one who ordered the killing of thousands of people in Panama.

The one who ordered the building of many new prisons to get tough on drugs and criminals in America, and it was all a scam, all to get elected, gain power.

George H. W. Bush.

The one who sneered at the funeral of Gerald Ford when he mentioned from the podium the killing of John Kennedy.

The one who claimed he was not in Dallas that day, but there is a photo showing he was.

The one who sits in the front row at the baseball games on national television and is applauded, not hit with tomatoes and fists and handcuffs, because he has been so successful in concealing the truth from the American people all these years.

The one who has said that if the American people knew what he has done, they would string him up by a light pole.

Well, actually, there were some guys, right here in Mount Liberty, some guys who suspected the truth about George H.W. Bush.

Who cared enough to find out the goddamn truth about our 41st President.

They were not the leading citizens. They did not write the editorials or sign the loans or even cut the hair of those who did.

They inhabited the underground, the earth.

The destitute, the hated, the laughed at, the so-called criminals themselves.

And they understood.

They knew where the power resided, where the truth could be found, what the reasons were, where the bodies were buried.

And they could not understand … and they wanted to find someone to ask why there might be such a stink about even talking about the killing of a rich so-called leader — and yet, the real-life slaughter of thousands, millions of poor people goes by without a whisper, a passing breeze in the trees that is gone and forgotten by the time the hail-fellow well-met in the cooks hat in the backyard shouts that the hot dogs are ready.

And so, with nothing better to do, they decided to fight.

KGB, they said.

Kill George Bush.

The men of D-Block are Mark Pontiac, Bobby Ford, Stephen Baltimore, Martin Mumford, Billy Mourning Dove, Miguel Mendez and Alford Arthur.

The new guy is Michael Zags, snatched from a downtown construction site for threatening the life of former president George H. W. Bush.

The jailer is Don Burton.

… There is the jail. There is the outside.

Some on the outside are headed to the jail. Some few realize that and some have no idea.

Unknown to the men in D-Block, an underground, pirate radio station had begun operating in downtown Mount Liberty, one woman’s plan to get around the arteriosclerosis blockage of non-information provided by the regular radio stations.

We have seen how Elana Usak had just finished her morning program when her apartment was raided by agents of the FCC. They threw her equipment and personal belongings out the window on to the street, in front of the media cameras and people standing on the sidewalk, just as Elana was able to slip away and into the little café right under her window, and then to her friend Martha’s office on the campus of Morningside College. Martha happens to be the step-mother of one of the men in D-Block. She asked Elana to stay with her and suggested that together they would figure out how to rig up her home to broadcast Elana’s radio show.

Then they had to move the radio show out of Martha’s home.

Paul, one of Elana’s biggest fans and listeners, volunteered to let her live at his house since Martha’s place was being watched by the FCC copes, then later to drive her around town to do the show on the move.

… Back at the house, while Paul’s kids sat in front of the television eating Cheetos and drinking chocolate milk, Elana and Paul sat on the front step. Elana wore a hooded sweatshirt and men’s tan coveralls.

“I need to get back on the air,” she said.

She wrapped her arms around her folded legs. Paul held a warm liter of Coke between his legs.

“Yeah. We need to get that stuff out of the basement. You could, well, they’d just bust you again.”

He ground a rock into the sidewalk with his shoe.

He set his hand on the cement between them, hoping she’d take it.

Elana looked at the stubby paw, the grizzled fingernails. She smiled at him. A rapper car passed.

“We could broadcast from your car!” she said.

She grabbed his hand and squeezed it in both of hers.

“What do you say?” she said.

Paul said it would probably be all right, except when he had doctor’s appointments.

“How do you do it?” he said.

Elana assured him she knew how to hook up her equipment by connecting to the existing wiring and antenna, taking out the back seat backrest and using the cushion as a desk, she would kneel on the floor.

“We just drive around town and they never get a true reading on us. Oh-my-God!” she whooped. “And we’ll be able to reach places we never could before. The college campus, downtown drive time again, South Side, North Side. The mobile revolution!”

She hugged Paul’s shoulders, making his eyes pop wide.

His pop spilled onto the sidewalk. She let him go to charge into the house.

He put his hand to his chest to catch his breath. …

… At one a.m. the night guard clicked down the hall. His flashlight moved with his right leg. He talked into his walkie-talkie, not bothering to be quiet for the sleeping prisoners. The doors of the sally port clanged open. The guard stalked in, click, click, down the row, shining a light into each cell, counting to himself.

“Mornin’, Gary,” Pontiac said.

“Mornin’,” said the guard, walking past.

He strode back without speaking.

Pontiac sat on the top bunk, his big bare feet hanging over the side. He rolled another cigarette. Gary glanced at Mumford doing pushups. The doors clanged shut.

Gary and Pontiac repeated the scene at two and three.

At the four o’clock count Pontiac was asleep.

As the night guard checked the blocks each hour and talked to the street cops who brought in prisoners and the woman who worked the front desk, while the lights at the corner clicked from green to yellow to red and the kids drove past, the men in D-Block dreamed like summer campers.

They dreamed of being twenty feet to the north.

What could that possibly be like?

They had never been there before.

They had each been born in jail.

They had never seen their mothers or held their children. They had always known Burton, always known his name. He had always been there in the morning, telling them when to eat, to read, to watch television.

They dreamed of really blue sky, flying up through the clouds, falling down into clouds and bouncing lightly.

They dreamed of playing softball and baseball.

Their dogs licked their faces as they slept. They made love to fairy princesses. They told their fathers they loved them and helped their mothers peel apples for pie.

They laughed.

And they smiled, wide, a wonder their faces did not crack and clatter to the floor like old pottery during a change in the weather.

They cried as it came near the time they had to leave their loved ones and blindly wiped real tears from their cheeks. They reached out their arms and could not reach out because of the top bunk or the ceiling.

They moaned and they jerked and they sobbed some more.

They grabbed themselves, not wanting to walk down the cold upstairs hall to pee.

Teetering on the precipice of their dreams they heard the school custodian’s whistle down the hall. They heard the jingling of a little brother’s toys in the living room. They heard someone reaching for keys to start a truck.

They clinched their teeth at the click of hard shoes on smooth, shiny concrete.

They heard the metallic-tasting language of a machine.

They opened their eyes and saw their mothers had flipped on their bedroom light against their wishes.

They felt the coarse blanket on their shoulders, heard the growl of Burton, “Brrr-ekfst!”

And the mechanical opening of their cages.

They opened their eyes, squinting, then rolled to their backs and shut their eyes, trying to retrieve their dreams, remembering they were in prison.

– Mike Palecek

I like KGB because it tells the forgotten story of prisoners and conspiracy theorists and people slaughtered by Bush Sr. in Panama and women and children in jail visiting rooms and other stuff.

I would like to say something about KGB.

I would like to ask why there is such a stink about even talking about the killing of a rich “leader” in a fictional story — and yet, the real-life slaughter of thousands, millions, of poor people goes by without a whisper, a passing breeze in the trees that is gone and forgotten by the time the hot dogs on the grill are ready.

I am not for the killing of George Bush Sr. or George Bush Jr. or George H.W. Bush or George W. Bush or George X.Y.Z. Bush.

I am not for killing. Period.

But I do think it is within the parameters of fiction and good taste and morality to allow the characters in a novel to discuss what they might do if they ever discovered how they came to such a desolate place in life.

In KGB we hear from his victims in El Salvador, Panama, prison, jail visiting rooms.

In KGB we have a pronounced preference for the poor, as it should be.

I am not for killing.

I only wish the same were true for George H.W. Bush.


KGB, first published 2001:

The jail squatted beneath the Woodbury County courthouse, invisible as a good boy to those walking outside, known only for the white vans disappearing into the yawning jaws of the off-white overhead door to the enclosed parking lot.

Each week day morning the door would groan and open, just enough for the van to reappear to take inmates up the street to the federal courthouse.

Those prisoners needing to appear in county court would walk. They would crowd handcuffed and shackled into the elevator in the jail front lobby with two guards for the ride up two floors.

The door would open into the world of color, people in a hurry, people whose days “flew by.” People with smiles on their faces, people with faces serious about nothing.

The door would open and reveal the load of orange men with scraggly, matted hair, men with no reason to shave, who had just walked into a department store holding the hand of a little girl and the girl asked the sleeping man what she could have and he said, nothing, and he woke …