The Meaning of TC-Two
Walking through the Uptown neighborhood of Chicago was terrifying. I followed the advice given: hands in plain view, eyes straight ahead. Older brick apartment buildings and single-family houses lined both sides of the streets, and large oak and maple trees give the place the look of a pleasant glade. At any other time, strolling through this neighborhood would have been reinvigorating, but this was wartime and the sound of gunfire nearby was more than a little disconcerting.
When I finally found Kenmore Avenue, I turned north for a few more blocks until I reached the house to which Swoboda had directed me. As I walked toward the front door, I became aware that I didn’t know any secret word or esoteric code to validate my authenticity. I also feared that conservative forces might have captured the safe house and were using it now to trap liberals seeking asylum. Still, I had come this far. I pushed the doorbell.
The woman answering the door was in her forties. She stepped out on the porch, careful to keep her door almost closed so I couldn’t see inside. “May I help you?” she asked suspiciously. “Are you sure you have the right house?”
I hesitated a few seconds. “Gee, I hope this is the place. A friend suggested I look up Deborah Ricketts when I got to Chicago. He gave me this address.”
“I’m Deborah Ricketts, but I don’t know you or your friend,” she responded curtly. She turned, walked inside, and began to close the door.
“Wait a minute,” I blurted out, “please. I’ve come a long, hard way to get here. Just let me introduce myself. You were recommended to me by a man I met in Montana. His name is Swoboda. He said that you could put me up for the night and that it would be safe here, what with the shooting and explosions and fires.”
“I’m sorry, mister, but I don’t know anyone named Swoboda, and I don’t have any acquaintances in Montana. You must have the wrong address,” the woman replied impatiently.
I was sure I had the right house. “Let me check,” I said while searching my pockets for the scrap of paper on which Swoboda had written the address.
When I held out the paper, the woman took it. Carefully, she analyzed the text. Apparently satisfied with what she inspected, she signaled for me to enter quickly. “You’re welcome, brother,” she said softly as she locked the door behind me. “One can’t be too careful nowadays. I never heard of Swoboda, but the note speaks for you. I would never have let you in without it.
“I’m Deborah Ricketts. I’m a biology professor at a local university. And this is my humble home in which you are welcomed to stay awhile. And, you are?” she inquired.
“Oh, excuse me. My name is Mike Tenney. I’ve come here from Yellowstone National Park—with the invaluable assistance of Swoboda.”
“Come into the living room and sit down. Can I get you something to drink? Are you hungry?” Deborah asked.
“I’m thirsty and starving, thank you. And I’m very tired—in that order,” I replied.
“Then rest here in the living room while a get you something to eat,” she said. From the kitchen she continued the conversation. “How did you get here from Yellowstone? The highways are being watched, trains and airplanes are under close scrutiny, and there are battles going on everywhere. No doubt you saw major warfare when you entered Chicago.”
“Actually, it was Swoboda’s idea," I replied. “He suggested that I jump in an empty boxcar in Bozeman and come here. I arrived in the western suburbs a short while ago. I mooched a ride into town with some paramilitary nut in a light green uniform who drove around flattening people’s tires with an automatic weapon while yelling silly political slogans.”
“Sounds like one of those conservative zanies from the suburbs,” Deborah replied. “They've been shooting up the neighborhoods for the last three days. They’re as dangerous as they are crazed with power. A few are genetically homicidal, I think, but most are just average people who’ve gone loco with power and free access to deadly firearms.”
“Well, I think it might be a little more foreboding than that,” I added. “From what I saw this afternoon, they are in league with the U.S. Army and the Marine Corps. The federal troops are letting paramilitaries terrorize Chicago while preparing to send combat units into your neighborhoods. I figure the military invasion should begin in a few days, if not sooner.”
Deborah brought soft drinks and an urn of hot coffee, as well as a plate heaped with food. “Just a few leftovers,” she informed me. "Eat, you're going to need energy."
While I ravenously chewed and drank, Deborah continued to question me. “There must be a reason Swoboda directed you here. You’ve come to Chicago with VIP credentials. What did you do to deserve such notoriety? Blow up a dam? Beat up a Republican? What in heavens did you do?”
“No,” I laughed. “I simply escaped from an Orthodoxy reeducation facility in Yellowstone National Park. Actually, it’s a political concentration camp. They now call it Camp Rush Limbaugh. The guards are probably still looking for me somewhere in or around the park.”
“Ah, so you’re a successful escapee. Let me touch you, you’re the first one I've ever met. You must have seen and heard a lot about what goes on there. Were you beaten or tortured? It’s a certainty you were starved, I can tell by the way you gulped down that meal,” she responded as she gestured toward the now-empty plate. “Want some more?”
Actually, I did want more food. And Deborah continued to talk as she refilled my plate and brought it into the living room. “To get serious again, Swoboda sent you to us precisely because you are a successful escapee who can tell the world what’s happening inside these Federal Orthodoxy camps. You’re more important, Mr. Tenney, than you might imagine.
“Everyone in the world has heard rumors about the new camps, but everything is so hush-hush, so censored these days. No one knows what’s going on inside them. You may be the only prisoner who’s ever escaped from one. All the other would-be escapees, if there were any, apparently were recaptured or shot trying to get away.
“But before you tell me your story, I want you meet a good friend, another sympathizer. He knows exactly what's happening to our country. He’ll clue you in,” Deborah explained while beckoning me to follow her upstairs. I gulped down the last few bites of my second serving and walked upstairs.
At the top of the staircase there was a small office in which an older man was working at a small desk. “Excuse me, Ken,” she said to the man. “Sorry to disturb you, but there is someone here you must meet. His name is Michael Tenney, and he’s been sent to us through the underground. I think Mike is the only person ever to have escaped a Republican concentration camp.”
The studious man sat up and swiveled his chair toward me. “How very glad I am to meet you, sir,” he said, extending his hand. “I am Dr. Kenneth Watanabe. I’m a historian. I write and teach history here in the city. But you, Mr. Tenney, you are making history. But, I’m sure you know this. I’m so very pleased to meet you."
I liked Professor Watanabe immediately. A bespectacled man in his late fifties with thick gray hair, his certainty made him sound like a wise elder. His physical appearance, tall and thin with handsome facial features, only enhanced his authoritative demeanor. Besides, he made me feel important for having fled Camp Limbaugh.
After an hour of intense conversation we were still analyzing the conservatives’ war on our political beliefs. The talk turned eventually from thought to action, and the professor confronted me with a proposition. “Mr. Tenney, you are a highly valuable human being. You are the only one who can tell the full story about what is going on in the camps because you were a prisoner in one of them. No Jew ever escaped Hitler’s concentration camps to expose the genocide until the Final Solution was practically finished. But you have made it out of a reactionary Republican hell-hole. And now it’s you who must tell the world. Only you can inform the civilized nations of the fate of democracy and liberalism in America.
“The Republicans own the media in the U.S. They keep strict control over their local newspapers, TV and radio stations, their telephone systems and the internet. Therefore, our story is not getting out. Furthermore, the reactionaries control all transportation, so it’s impossible to move about the country. In case someone does attempt to travel, there are troops everywhere rounding up liberals for assignment to reeducation camps.
“You, Mr. Tenney, are the most important asset they do not control,” the professor continued. “You are the rarest of people in the United States: you are still free. Therefore, you must tell your story. It must be heard.”
Increasingly, I came to appreciate my historical circumstances. If in the popular imagination I was what Swoboda had called “the last American liberal,” it was my moral duty to act. I owed it to those suffering in the camps or living underground, to those forced to abandon their freedom in order to survive in a world now being fashioned by intolerant reactionaries. For all those who embraced liberty, I had to expose this tyranny that was strangling the United States.
To me this was Fascism, pure and simple. But as I explained how certain I was that there was a Fascist coup d’état occurring across the nation, the professor interrupted me. “There's a lot more to this struggle than you have experienced, Mr. Tenney. You recognize only part of the horror; an important part, but still not the full picture. It is much more diabolic than you know,” he said forebodingly. “And it is this larger perspective that you must emphasize when you tell your story. Please let me elucidate.
“First of all you cannot understand what’s happening in terms of political models from earlier centuries. Terms such as “Red” and “Fascist” are outdated in our postindustrial world. Nowadays, Marxism is little more than an intellectual exercise for a few toothless scholars determined to understand the world as Karl Marx did in the 1850s and Lenin in 1910s. That’s all in the dustbin of history: the Soviet Union is dead and buried; Eastern Europe was emancipated years ago; Castro’s Cuba was a total failure.
“There is no legitimacy left in Socialism or Communism; the radical Left is yesterday’s newspaper, Mr. Tenney,” he continued. “About all that remains is the romance of the color red. Do you know what country produces the greatest number of exploited proletarian workers today? It’s China. Good old Red China, the country that produced Mao Zedong, the Great Helmsman whose little red book of pithy sayings was supposed to guide the planet toward enlightened social reorganization. Move over Confucius, here comes Mao? Forget it. Today, Mao's sayings are about as relevant as the predictions found in fortune cookies. China today is Marxism’s greatest nightmare!
“Then there’s Fascism. How we liberals love to hurl this term at political rivals—as you just did. But, it’s such an anachronistic model for what’s presently happening. Think Fascism and you see the Black Shirts of Mussolini in Italy in the 1920s and 1930s. Or, you see race-obsessed Germans using mass-murder tactics to purge the planet of people they didn't like. Neither is applicable to today’s predicament.
“You must find a new term to explain the streamlining of the nation state that is presently underway, not just here but throughout the world. Behind it all, the new goal is economic: a single global economy that is integrated and rationalized. No one really cares about the different ethnicities and cultures involved. Pakistan will continue to be Pakistani. Italy will remain Italian—don’t worry, Venice will still attract tourists. And even after all this bloody mess, the USA will continue to be American.
“But the economies of these and all other nations are to be meshed together in one commercial enterprise that is holistic, transnational, and obviously gigantic. Most importantly, this new world order is being run by shrewd businessmen, not guttersnipes like Hitler and Mussolini and Mao. Think global bankers who are too-big-to-fail. Think Big Capital investors from Wall Street in New York, The City in London, and the Bourse in Paris—as well as from stock exchanges that stretch from Fiji and Kuwait to Nigeria and Brazil. We’re on the cusp of a United States of Earth. That is their goal, and the reorganization of the United States is critical to their strategy.
“Place yourself in their shoes, Mr. Tenney,” the professor proposed. “If you were trying to homogenize the world, you would have only two choices: raise the water or lower the bridge. Raise the world to American standards, or lower American standards to match the rest of the planet. Which do you think can be done more cheaply and faster? Unfortunately, Mr. Tenney, you may not be able to stop their lowering of the bridge, but you must try.”
Professor Watanabe’s explanation was sobering. And he offered proof-positive that such a plot was underway. As he explained it, several years ago he had been conducting routine research in the personal papers of a deceased conservative leader from Florida. As well as being a force in state politics, this influential man had been a powerful leader of the state and national Republican Party. In his archived papers, the Professor discovered a report marked Top Secret that apparently had been misplaced.
“What I found, Mr. Tenney, was a thick notebook containing a political master plan so bold that it is still unbelievable—even though it is well on its way to becoming a reality,” Professor Watanabe said. “Read the master plan and you’ll know that the events of the last weeks were not caused by passage of the Federal Orthodoxy Law. No! According to this secret plan, our contemporary chaos has been in the works for years. Recent Congressional action only ignited the fuse—and right on schedule.
“You must understand, all this turmoil is laid out in the meticulous plan devised by conservative ideologues; and that's what I found in that in that overlooked notebook. The architects of this schematic called it Toward Confederacy II—simplified sometimes as TC-Two.”
I started to ask questions, but Professor Watanabe interrupted me. “Wait and you shall know everything. Please, allow me to explain. You'll soon have a chance to peruse the extensive notes I took on TC-Two. The original notebook is still resting inconspicuously among the man’s papers which were donated by his widow to a university archive in Florida. But, I was able to take extensive notes on the plan, and I’ve summarized my findings in this short outline. Please read it, Mr. Tenney, and we’ll talk in a few minutes. This should fill in the blank spots in your understanding of our situation.”
With that somber preface, he handed me a copy of his summary. I reproduce it here as best I can from memory.
TOWARD CONFEDERACY II
NOTE: This document is divided into three segments: History, Concept, and Implementation.
It is clear today that the end of the War Between the States was not as adverse to the South as it might seem. For the original dream of a Confederate States of America, the surrender at Appomattox in 1865 meant military defeat and the end of what we may call Confederacy I. But beginning in 1877 the period called Reconstruction incubated aspirations for a revived CSA, or, Confederacy II.
Historically, the withdrawal of federal occupation troops from the South allowed the former Confederate states to rule themselves with one eye on the U.S. Constitution and the other focused on protecting their own peculiar institutions. Given the circumstances, it was the best Southern patriots could have achieved.
For nearly 80 years the region enjoyed quasi-independence under the legal umbrella of States Rights. To maintain the integrity of such self-rule, wealthy property owners of the antebellum aristocracy worked cooperatively with the common white citizenry. That alliance was kept together by a shared distrust, even hatred, of free Negroes. The result was a form of apartheid that was found surreptitiously in most states, but it was allowed to be openly legal in the South.
Ironically, this understanding between North and South was brokered by the detested Republican Party (once the party of Lincoln and other liberal radicals) which ran the federal government, and the Democratic Party which monopolized power in the South. For the former, it guaranteed maintenance of the Union through non-military means. For the latter, it meant the dream of Confederacy II endured, percolating in the soul of every true Southerner.
This arrangement was betrayed in the 1950s by liberal Yankee politicians who took up the issue of race. In 1954 nine old men on the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that “separate but equal” was inherently unequal, and, therefore, the apartheid arrangement that flourished in the South was null and void.
There then followed years of federal legal and military intervention in school integration cases, as well as challenges to such sacred institutions as segregated public restaurants and stores, drinking fountains, restrooms, and interstate transportation. The battle was joined. The Civil War was reignited.
This was only beginning. The real assault upon the Southern system came in the 1960s with the policies of liberal Democrats John F. Kennedy and above all that Texas Traitor, Lyndon Baines Johnson.
Betrayal by Republican politicians might have been expected, but treason against the South by the Democratic Party was stunning. From school integration to unbiased housing and election laws, liberals in the Democratic Party sided with blacks against the overwhelming majority of whites living in the former Confederacy. The liberals, almost unanimously from the North, were warned many times. Orville Faubus of Arkansas, George Wallace of Alabama, Lester Maddox of Georgia: segregationist Democratic champions such as these governors demanded that their Party members in Washington stop the onslaught. Their warnings went unheeded.
By 1964 a secret group of prominent Southern leaders understood that their way of life was under attack. As a consequence, they organized and set in motion plans for realizing Confederacy II. To this end, they turned to transformative politics. Needing a new political party to represent their interests on the national scene, betrayed white Southerner leaders and their followers turned to the Republicans headed then by conservative Senator Barry Goldwater of Arizona. Historians have described Goldwater’s 1964 presidential campaign his “Southern Strategy.” In actuality, it was the planned first-step in implementing the stratagems proposed in TC-Two. But in the mid-1960s it was advantageous to allow Goldwater followers to feel they had invented a new political paradigm.
II) CONFEDERACY II—THE CONCEPT
The fundamental mistake of the Confederate States of America in the 1860s was their fixation upon seceding from the USA. In terms of manpower, natural resources, and capital, the CSA was totally overwhelmed by the United States. There was no way the South could break away and maintain its independence. The end of Confederacy I represented the demise of secession as a viable option.
In its place, a modern Southern model has emerged. Broader in scope and bolder in implementation, Toward Confederacy II envisions the complete conquest of the United States by the South and reconstitution of the U. S. as a new political arrangement. Only by fully usurping the levers of power within the fifty states of the federal Union can the South achieve its objectives of decentralized government, unfettered capitalist enterprise, states’ rights, majority rule, and respect for local traditions.
Call it rebellion, civil war, invasion, or conquest, the South must crush the North and assume total political and military power. Only then can it rid itself of the unwanted aspects of democracy and return American society to that natural order which served the South so well for centuries.
III) CONFEDERACY II—IMPLEMENTATION
Meeting in Montgomery, Alabama, during festivities for the Blue- Gray football game in December 1963, top Southern political leaders drew up a secret design for achieving Confederacy II. It consisted of six sequential Levels of Achievement. They are as follows:
LEVEL A: Realign the South with the minority Republican Party. This can be done by the wholesale conversion of white Southern voters to Republicanism, and by unflagging support for GOP candidates and their policies. Conversely, distance the South from Democratic politics, particularly from the ideology of Northeastern and Western liberals.
LEVEL B: Once in the Republican embrace, assume full control of the Grand Old Party. This can be achieved by a variety of political moves that include regional unity in all voting; and because our Senators and Congressmen from the one-party South stay longer in office, insistence on seniority privileges in exercising legislative power. Once control of the Republican Party is solidified, appeal nationwide to disaffected voters who are yearning for fresh leadership.
LEVEL C: Take over all forms of mass communication existing now or in the future. Newspapers, TV and radio stations, motion picture studios, and magazines must be controlled because they are vital to the dissemination of our views. Conversely, liberal propaganda must be stifled so there will be only one message: Our Message. The strategy here is to purchase communication businesses and purge them of liberal sympathies. Then, legislate policies that enable the accumulation of power in a few corporate hands which leads necessarily to the formation of vertically-integrated media empires supporting our conservative politics, top to bottom, bottom to top.
LEVEL D: At the propitious moment, employ the full power of government to destroy liberalism, root and branch. Through Congressional laws, Presidential initiatives, Supreme Court decisions; and, if necessary, federal military action, extinguish pernicious liberalism. This will create the national homogeneity necessary to achieve Level E and Level F, the two final stages in this strategy.
LEVEL E: Cleanse the Republican Party of those who may be soft on liberalism. They may be found among commercial Republicans who support the GOP, not from allegiance to a Southern philosophy, but because its policies make money for wealthy corporate supporters. Such self-interested sympathy may also exist among social Republicans, those opportunists found predominantly in the Northeast who wear their GOP affiliation like expensive jewelry, but who lack the passion of the Southern believer. As for other quasi-Republicans—call them Log Cabin Republicans, black Republicans, or RINOs (Republicans in Name Only)—they are all suspect and must be purged because Southern conservatives will control the entire United States, and only the most reliable Party members can be trusted with power.
Then through a series of amendments passed in a Constitutional Convention, the victors will change the U.S. Constitution of its liberal slant by repealing unnecessary and inefficient freedoms. As a coup de grace, the name of the republic will be changed to the New Confederate States of America.
LEVEL F: With the establishment of the New Confederate States of America the economy of this country will be rapidly folded into the greater international economy where mega-corporations and vertically-integrated monopolies supportive of our goals control production and distribution worldwide. Here American wages must be revised. Trade unionism and other worker initiatives will be destroyed; the so-called Middle Class will be eliminated; the cost of skilled American labor will be brought in line with the price of human work in countries as scattered as China, Togo, and Paraguay. Decentralized national government and inexpensive domestic labor for a highly-centralized world economy: this is Confederacy II.
I had totally missed the point of the Orthodoxy Law and the tumult it had created. I had also failed to understand that the capture of the Republican Party—an institution of respectable conservatism exemplified by such past leaders as Dwight Eisenhower, Robert Taft, and even the flawed Richard Nixon—by sectional reactionaries was a strategic step in a blueprint for the conquest of the U.S.A. by those still holding to the political dream of Confederacy, and the financial dream of global economic control through.
“You must believe this document,” Professor Watanabe said to me. “The full version is no longer available, but this summary is the smoking gun. It’s all the proof you’ll need.
So now you must inform—no, you must warn the world that it exists. Above all, explain what’s going on. This Republican war is an abomination that must be exposed in all its ramifications. Warn them, Mr. Tenney, before it’s too late.”
All I could do was mumble, “I'm only a lowly bureaucrat from the Social Security Administration. What do you want me to do? What shall I say? How do I say it? Where should I say it?”
“The United Nations is our only hope,” the professor continued. "Everything is closed off here in the United States: national borders have been sealed, there are no flights overseas, TV and radio stations are not reporting what’s happening; telephone service is nonexistent; the internet is censored. Only a personal appeal to the U.N. can get out the message and trigger a global response. Please, expose what’s happening. It’s our only hope to save America and the planet."
“Mr. Tenney, you must take this document to New York City," interrupted Deborah. "Demand time to speak before the General Assembly and the Security Council. You have the insight that comes from experience. You’ve been imprisoned in an ideological penitentiary. Tell your story. Tell them also about TC-Two. Because you can speak with authority, the world will listen to you.”
“But how do I get to New York City. Ride the rails again?” I asked somewhat bewildered by the daunting idea of more secretive traveling.
“Don’t worry about that,” said Deborah. “We can move you from safe house to safe house. We’ll get you to New York. But you must present the case.”
One part of me wanted to exult in the sublime importance my average little life had assumed. Another part realized that I was in mortal danger, not only from reactionary warriors trying to stop me from reaching New York, but also from the liberal underground which had exposed its deepest secrets to me. Failure to succeed could mean death from those who hated me or, possibly, from friends who feared that I knew too much.
Copyright © 2012 J. Fred MacDonald - All Rights Reserved.