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Joe, you made the big time! 👋

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Robbie's doing remarkable work getting a wide

range of guests and conducting lively

interviews and panel discussions.  I complimented him

on doing all this at age 24, the same age

as another precocious fellow, Oswald. We need

to help cultivate the new generation of

researchers and podcasters, such as Robbie.

They give us hope in the future of the

field. I find that my students are fascinated

to learn about it and have open minds on it,

unlike most of my Baby Boomer generation.

Edited by Joseph McBride
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31 minutes into your podcast talk JM and must take a break.

Just wanted to ask you if you caught the teenage Steven Spielberg/John Ford meet up scene in the just released Spielberg film "The Fablemans?"

I assume Spielberg portrayed this meet up scene with Ford as word for word close to it's reality? A quite powerful effect one on Spielberg despite it's super brief eccentric gruffness on Ford's part.

This highly sentimentalized biographical look back by Spielberg onto his early childhood years didn't grab my film buff wife. Me either, although my wife has much more film studies background knowledge to convey her feelings coherently on the subject.

The high school Spielberg attended was Saratoga High. Not far from you and ourselves here in Monterey. I believe Spielberg's family lived in Los Gatos at the time.

I always cringe when LBJ is portrayed in his legacy image as a sentimentalized "master politician" more than any other single characterization.

IMO, the guy was a classic Machiavellian monster. Ruthless in his power seeking to degrees well beyond blackmail. 

He and Hoover were a supremely corrupted self-serving team. We're "Like Brothers" LBJ is heard telling Hoover on one tape.

Although the Pod Cast young fellow seems a little naive in some aspects of JFK/LBJ/Oswald event story imo, I am really impressed at how much he DOES know about so many related aspects, especially considering he is only 24 years old.

His sincere and fully committed caring interest in the subject is inspiring.

At his age I was just trying to get my first apartment and taking care of my most basic needs on a dishwasher's salary. 

Just watched Jim D's interview on the Patrick Bet-David podcast show. The latest one that included Paul Gregory and Ernst Titovets.

You both have been getting significant air time on large audience number radio and internet interview venues.





Edited by Joe Bauer
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Yes, Spielberg has told that story before making

the film: see his clip telling it to Ron Howard et al.

on YouTube and his recounting the experience in the Peter Bogdanovich documentary

DIRECTED BY JOHN FORD. The only part he left out in THE FABELMANS

is Ford telling him never to spend his own money on a film (Spielberg

eventually violated that when he and his partners each

put $33 million into starting up DreamWorks).  

My experience interviewing Ford on the last day of his career, August 19, 1970, was

quite similar, though I had an hour with him and doggedly tried to elicit

cogent remarks from him, with occasional success (that interview

is transcribed at length in my 2007 book TWO CHEERS FOR HOLLYWOOD:


Ford was both gruff and somewhat affectionate with me, as he is in THE FABELMANS.

He stonewalled me a lot and gave me a rough time, but at the end

he gave me an Irish blessing -- and then joked about it -- and when

I gave him a copy of my first published book, PERSISTENCE OF VISION:

A COLLECTION OF FILM CRITICISM, he read the dedication to him (lifting

his eyepatch and holding the page close to his eye) and said, "Oh, that's sweet."


I don't find THE FABELMANS "highly sentimentalized" (?), an odd description

for a film that's often searingly painful; see my article about it in Slate,

from the viewpoint of a biographer comparing it with the actual events

of his youth. It mostly portrays them accurately but takes some

liberties and leaves out some things I wish he had put it, but overall

it's one of the best filmed autobiographical works.

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Searingly painful?

The bullying Spielberg endured in high school was bad. More than most bullied kids for sure.

His first love but flaky girlfriend leaving him was kind of painful too, I guess.

His parent's divorce ( like most all divorces ) hits home in the painful department if you've ever gone through this as a child. Especially with his mother leaving his beloved father for another man.

Still, just didn't feel the pain on the level you describe. 

Maybe coming from a much rougher childhood myself has jaded me?

However, I assume your point is as much about Spielberg's incredible talent and skill in capturing this pain so poignantly in telling this or his other stories on film? 

Just viewed the Spielberg/Grazer/Howard interview on You Tube.

Spielberg describes his John Ford meeting exactly as he filmed it.


Edited by Joe Bauer
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“You think your pain and your heartbreak are unprecedented in the history of the world, but then you read. It was books that taught me that the things that tormented me most were the very things that connected me with all the people who were alive, who had ever been alive.”
— James Baldwin

Read my Slate article for my thoughts on the film.


You may or may not be aware that his parents'

divorce is the primal trauma that drives most

of his films, not only this one, which portrays

it most directly. His films usually deal

with irresponsible father figures and sometimes

irresponsible mother figures.

Spielberg once said that

the worst thing about the anti-Semitic abuse

was getting punched in the face, which

the film shows graphically and viscerally. He also

suffered some anti-Semitism in Phoenix

that the film does not show. He often felt

like an outsider as a kid, which is traumatic

for anyone. That's as big a motivator

for his work as anything; he became

a filmmaker to find acceptance from his peers

in school.

I can easily relate to those traumas.

And most filmgoers can, as the great success

of E.T., for example, shows. That was his

most closely autobiographical previous film,

although as he notes all his films are


BTW, since we're on this site, I will

note that Spielberg's Saratoga pal Mike

Augustine told me they made a short film

commemorating the JFK assassination

and that Spielberg thought a conspiracy

was behind it. Gus Russo claimed to me

that he asked Spielberg about that film

but that Spielberg denied making it. But Gus

Russo is a dubious source, as we know.

I assembled the history and listing of Spielberg's amateur

films from my many interviews with his

friends (cast and crew et al) and from

other sources.

Edited by Joseph McBride
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Allow me to humbly suggest that you lower the price of the Kindle version of your book. $30 for a Kindle book is unusually high. To give you some idea of a standard price, Dr. Mantik's new book, JFK Assassination Paradoxes, which is very long and contains numerous photos and graphics, sells for only $9.76 as a Kindle book. Monica Wiesak's new book, America's Last President, which is over 300 pages long, sells for only $8.99 as a Kindle book.

Anyway, I read the sizable free Kindle preview of your book on Amazon and was very impressed with it. Judging from the segment I read, your book appears to be an excellent, informative work on the media's poor and harmful handling of the JFK case.

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Thanks for the suggestion, Michael. I will check

into it. And I appreciate your good words on

POLITICAL TRUTH. It's the result of many years of

research and thought as well as reflecting

what I've learned in my long career as a journalist,

which began in May 1960. The first article I sold

(about my sports hero, Milwaukee Braves

pitcher, Warren Spahn and his son, Greg,

my Little League teammate) was published

in the national magazine The Young Catholic

Messenger in the same week that I received a letter

for Senator John F. Kennedy thanking me for

my work on his Wisconsin presidential primary


Edited by Joseph McBride
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A few points of interest, to me at least.

LBJ, immediately after the assassination, "Am I gonna have to sell my God damn Haliburton stock".  He didn't, a blind trust, one where he called his tax lawyer about it daily.  While he made money off their Vietnam contracts.  Briefly a grade school teacher, otherwise a politician his whole life.  Had $25,000,000 in stock as president (how much is that today?).  How did he get that rich on a congressman, then senator's salary?

JFK calling a lower level military guy about the cost of chairs.  "That was a f**k up".

The dictabelt.  Mary Ferrell was an informant.  It was meant to discredit the HSCA.

Byrd, May, have bought the TSBD a few months before the assassination for it to be used in it.

Joseph, what was the name of the low budget film on Jack Ruby you mentioned?  Something you recommend?

Jack Ruby seen in Houston watching the parade on Thursday.  I've read elsewhere before about this.  Seems like there were multiple sightings.  Possibly a possible ID of him in a photograph.  Think I'll look into this later.

Who said the press should comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable?  Don't ask tough questions.  The media feels it is part of the government.

Liberty Valance.  The Duke from the shadows to the shadows of the grassy knoll.

Liberty Valance - Bing video

Edited by Ron Bulman
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That incident about Ruby in Houston is is the David Schiem book, Contract on America.

Which is probably the best of the mafia did it books.

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23 hours ago, James DiEugenio said:

That incident about Ruby in Houston is is the David Schiem book, Contract on America.

Which is probably the best of the mafia did it books.

Thanks Jim.  Wish I had your memory for detail.  That book does not have a relevant index on this.  Houston is not in it.  Jack Rubenstein/Ruby says simply passim.  But I found it.  Pages 290-291.  A Houston Sherrif's Deputy recognized his picture on tv and in the newspaper after he shot Oswald.  He saw him 3X and talked to him on Thursday, tracked down Five Witnesses who saw him.  More details there. 

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