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Priests of the Lie
A Documentary Exercise in Maintaining the Greatest Lie Ever Sold: 9/4/2022
© 2022 James LaFond
Bob and I have been watching a very good series of documentaries on mountain men, pathfinders and scouts. The series manages to worship African Americans and Native Americans and at the same time be profoundly pro-government, and American-centric.
The actors were very good, the combat reenactments not terrible, the chase scenes good, all filmed with the same cast of characters in Montana, it seems in a summer and fall one year not long ago. For instance, Jim Bridger, is played by the same actor in his story and in the stories of various associates, as is Tom Fitzpatrick. Full biographies are not attempted. The sad end of each of these men is not even covered. A pulp formula which focuses on the origins and highlight of each man is used to great entertaining and uplifting effect. We don’t have to see Colter die of Jaundice, Glass get murdered by the Rees, and so on.
For the most part, the series focus is on the Rocky Mountains region and only goes terribly wrong concerning events in the unhallowed East. The origins of the famous men: Jim Bridger, Kit Carson and James Beckwourth the black Mountain man who claimed to have been a Crow chief for eight years are the same, working as trade apprentices in black-smithing and saddle making in Saint Louis. The historians interviewed bend over backwards to depict James as a runaway slave. The narrator says he “gained his freedom” stretching it is much as possible. But I knew that he was born in Virginia by a black slave woman to a white master who loved him and gave him and his siblings their freedom at adulthood, as was common with free families. Indeed, a wife, in the early 1800s was a slave, as were the children, all owned outright by the father, unable to leave without his permission.
Thank God for the interview with James Beckwourth’s descendant, a mixed race man who explained what the historians covered up. However, this admission, that James did not “gain his freedom” but was granted it, is corrected by the narrator saying that the fathers of such mixed race men did not normally recognize them, and that Beckwourth’s case was an aberration.
This is false. Frederick Douglass was not denied by his white slave father, who apologized to him later in life. William Wells Brown was callously treated by his owner, the brother of his father and owner of his mother, who was kept as a hostage for his good behavior. Moses Ropper, only ¼ African, was protected by his white slave father from his white witch slave mistress who tried to kill him.
The Academy is allergic to historical nuance.
It is obvious from James’ own account, that he did not runaway as alluded to in the narration, but that Carson did runaway, as an unfree white man, from his employer, which is made to sound like a lark by the historian who describes him in fictional terms as “doing a Huck Finn” unwilling to cite actual historical examples of white apprentices [such as Benjamin Franklin] running from white masters, as did William Garrison, who became Liver-Eating Johnson and would have fit nicely into this series scheme of the story.
It is also obvious from James Beckwourth’s own account, that he was not a chief among the Absoraka, but a captive, then a warrior and then an agent for dealing with the white traders. He admits to wooing a Crow woman for eight years for a wife, and being turned down flatly, as well as not even being consulted about an attack on his old business partners. Speaking of this, this grifter fell into debt with his own employer and was essentially running away from that obligation when he joined the Crow. Between every line of Beckwourth’s quotes are glaring truths that could have been examined to explain a lot. But despite Beckwourth’s honest descendant admitting that his ancestor was “an exaggerator” none of these nuances are explored.
Again, and again, nuances that make an even better story, are avoided by the anti-story tellers of The Academy, who do not engage in history, which is inquiry, but in induction into a propaganda stream.
Of great interest, which irritated Bob to know end, is that with French explorers crawling all over the region since 1700, the 1804 Voyage of Discovery is repeatedly cited as the “first white men” to set eyes on many sights. This is patently false. It is mentioned that Sakagaweya was abducted and sold as a wife to a French trapper and is shown traveling with a half French baby. The nuance glares through even when obscured.
Merryweather Lewis is shown giving his Whiskey Rebellion officer’s jacket to a Shoshone chief. The historians do not mention that there were no combat casualties in that rebellion, that the loss of life was due to slave soldiers dying of illness and exposure and those running away being hunted and scalped by Shawnee warriors for 15-20 dollars a scalp—Indians working for money. This would have gelled well with the Boone episode, which is left as the odd story and could have been linked to the other bios numerous times.
Who were these Indians, working for money?
The series falls apart when it tries to address Daniel Boone. They had novelists available to speak of this, but used them for emotional color and lyric quality, and went mostly with the standard lying historians whose specialty was the West and not the East, who clumsily apply the lie. Montana does not a convincing Kentucky make. What was worse, is that western Indians with long hair were used to depict mixed-race tribesmen with cropped hair.
The facts of Boone being driven by economic circumstance from Pennsylvania, through Virginia, to North Carolina, to Kentucky, to Missouri is erased by statements and actor depictions that he was socially-phobic, that he could not abide neighbors, even though he was a community leader on the frontier. The facts that drove men to hunt for hides to feed European fashion fads are avoided for depicting these men as get rich quick junkies.
Why men left in tens of thousands, into the teeth of savage tribal opposition, leaving an area that was nigh unsettled according to European standards, is not addressed, at all. The fact that the merchant debt politics of the north and the predatory plantation economics of the south drove these men to migrate, men who were then followed and swindled out of their hard won lands by the class of politicians and land owners and merchants they had fled from, is not touched. Rather, the mythic wanderlust of the frontiersman, the misfit who blazes the path and must then ride into the sunset, is invoked, linking “history” with iconic movie fiction.
One of the most interesting aspects of Boone’s life was that he was adopted by the Shawnee. This fact is avoided, I suspect, because the chief historian on the show claimed, when the attack on Boone by “Captian Will Emery” of the Shawnee was described, that “Native Americans affected European name and rank for social status.” That was nearly a direct quote. He definitely used “affected.”
The attack by Big Bill of the Cherokee is not noted. However, the attack of Hanging Maw of the Cherokee is. These are both Anglo Honorifics applied in true Highland Clan fashion, by friend and foe, reflecting the high level of Scottish-Cherokee interbreeding.
In Boone’s time roughly half of all tribal leaders east of the Mississippi were half European, with either Scottish, English, German or Irish fathers. Why do the academics ever decline to discuss the truth, that native tribal leader married their daughters to frontier leaders as alliance pacts and that the half-breed children naturally rose to leadership during a clash of two worlds?
If we understand that a tribal war leader also plays a diplomatic role and must be able to conduct negotiations during the majority of the conflict that does not involve killing, and in its aftermath, then the utility of half-breed leaders in war makes sense. But this sense must not be made.
Captain Will Emery was the son of an Englishman. But, according to the “one drop” slave master rule of yore, still upheld by The Academy, mixed race people must not exist. The native American professor interviewed about Indian culture appears 75% European, Beckwourth’s descendant clearly mixed. But in Academic eyes these men are 100% none-European. There is not a space wide enough to slide a sheet of paper between the racial definitions of the KKK and The Academy. The job of both of these federally funded institutions is to divide us, and is why their politics matter less than their definitions.
No wider discussion is invoked, and along with the use of western Indians to depict eastern Indians, who were genetically roughly half European by the mid 1700s, largely due to European runaways joining their ranks, it is alleged by the historians that Daniel Boone’s daughter and her pretty friends [who can supposedly do anything a man can do, despite being abducted without a fight] are going to be killed by the Indians, who would most likely have married them and run babies through them or sold them to the British for guns and ammo. Again, the Eastern Woodland Indian is always depicted by the crafters of The Lie as racially and culturally identical to Apache and Comanche warrior societies separated by 2,000 miles and 100 years.
Finally, the most fascinating aspect of Boone’s life, that he was solo hunting in the Rocky Mountains in 1807 as an old man, a fact that would have joined these tales together with novelistc serendipity, is utterly avoided.
Perhaps because the viewer’s mind might finally be drawn to inquire, “Why would a sixty year old man be putting as much space as humanly possible between himself and the nation he supposedly served as a patriot?”
Falsehood abounds in The Academy, for it is their currency.
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Maud'dib     Feb 15, 2023

keep preaching th etruth fine sir.....
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