Allen Lowe Posted November 7, 2022 Share Posted November 7, 2022 1 hour ago, W. Niederhut said: A somewhat odd coincidence. This afternoon, I just happened to finish reading Stephen Kinzer's 2019 biography of MK-Ultra mastermind, Sidney Gottlieb, Poisoner-in-Chief. So, looking for some lighter reading material this evening, I resumed Bob Dylan's new book, The Philosophy of Modern Song, and eventually arrived at Chapter 27, pausing before each song/chapter to listen to the YouTube recording of the song for the chapter. (One of tonight's chapters was about Marty Robbins' 1959 cowboy ballad, El Paso, which I knew by heart when I was a kid, but hadn't listened to for decades.) Anyway, chapter 27 is about the Fugs 1967 proto-punk song, C.I.A. Man. I had heard this song before somewhere but I can't remember where. Was it part of a movie soundtrack? Punk rock historian Cliff Varnell probably knows. I was a bit surprised to hear in the lyrics that the Fugs, obviously, knew in 1967 about Sidney Gottlieb's MK-Ultra LSD research projects-- more than a decade before John Marks published The Search For the Manchurian Candidate, based on the MK-Ultra financial records. But, as Kinzer pointed out, John Lennon and other rockers also knew about the CIA's role in pushing LSD, because Lennon once said, "We must remember to thank the CIA for giving us LSD." Dylan mentions that the Fugs took their name from Norman Mailer's novel, The Naked and the Dead, where Mailer used "fug" for "f*ck" to circumvent obscenity allegations. He also includes a photo in Chapter 27 of Allen Dulles' CIA photo ID card. The recording is raw and out-of-tune, like something Iggy Pop might have recorded in a garage, but it's funny. You need to credit a lot more than John Lennon, who was relatively late to the party when it came to New York City political awareness of the CIA. Allen Ginsberg was talking about this very early in the sixties as were the Fugs in the person of Tuli Kupferberg and the leader Ed Sanders. These guys were doing anti-nuke activities as early as 1961 and 1962. They were well head of their time. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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