…And the truth shall set you free

David Icke

Modestly describing itself as “the most explosive book of the 20th century,” …And the truth shall set you free is the most recent evidence of a certain faction of die-hard New Agers’ growing fascination with the anti-Trilateral Commission/Illuminati obsessions that were once the exclusive and much-ridiculed domain of the Birchers. That this ground has all been covered extensively in books like Tragedy and Hope and None Dare Call It Conspiracy and weekly in The Spotlight newspaper does not faze author and former British soccer player David Icke in the least. That some of Icke’s New World Order/banking/secret society muckraking might have some solid basis in fact makes his unsurpassed “good-vibey” self-glorification no less offensive. In author Icke’s memorable words, “People of Planet Earth, it is wakey, wakey time.” SS

Publisher: Bridge of Love
Paperback: 518 pages

Thought Contagion: How Beliefs Spread Through Society

Aaron Lynch

A basic explanation of the hip new science of memetics, the study of the spread of ideas and beliefs called “memes.” Combining elements of epidemiology, genetics and conventional sociology, Thought Contagion is more of trial balloon to expose memetics to a wider public than a ground-breaking scientific work. SS

Publisher: Basic
Hardback: 192 pages

The Struggle Against the State and Other Essays

Nestor Makhno

Makhno was a Ukrainian peasant revolutionary who for several years before, during and after the Russian Revolution successfully led an anarchist army which fought against both the Bolsheviks and the White counterrevolutionaries. From exile in Paris, Makhno aggressively refuted allegations of anti-Semitism and of having conducted pogroms in essays like “To the Jews of All Countries,” and commemorated the tragic fate of the workers in Kronstadt, who fought the Red Army in 1921 to try to implement the Bolshevik proclamations regarding equality and worker autonomy. These essays are the hard-won insights of a fighting anarchist who could clearly the see totalitarian realities behind the propaganda of the early Soviet era. In his essay “The ABC of the Revolutionary Anarchist,” Makhno writes, “Experience of practical struggle strengthened my conviction that anarchism educates man in a living way. It is a teaching every bit as revolutionary as life, and it is a teaching every bit as varied and potent in its manifestations as man’s creative existence and, indeed, is intimately bound up with that.” SS

Publisher: AK
Paperback: 126 pages

The Assault on Culture: Utopian Currents from Lettrisme to Class War

Stewart Home

Thumbnail outline of the seemingly mazelike “utopian” (read “anti-commodity”) movements that seek to replace art and work with some form of more genuine expression. Ties together pataphysics, COBRA, lettrists, Situationist International, Fluxus, auto-destructive art, Provos, Yippies, White Panthers, punk, mail art, and other currents. Anti-romantic non-coffeetable, anti-art history. SS

Publisher: AK
Paperback: 120 pages

¡Zapatistas! Documents of the New Mexican Revolution (December 31, 1993 through June 12, 1994)

The Editorial Collective

After the Ross Perot-led anti-NAFTA debacle in Congress subsided, it looked as though the Trilateral forces of global finance (riding high on the post-Cold War buy-up of Eastern Europe) were smugly on their way to consolidating their grip on yet another chunk of the world’s real estate. In this case, Mexico was to be corralled into our big new “free trade zone” and the whole debate in Congress revolved around whether we Americans wanted them in or not. Yet on January 1, 1994—symbolically the day that NAFTA was to go into effect—the corrupt edifice of the Mexican government (which has been controlled for most of this century by the aptly Orwellian-titled Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI) was thrown off its foundations by the coordinated actions of a then-obscure guerrilla army operating in the remote jungle state of Chiapas near the border of Guatemala.
The Zapatista occupation of four Chiapas towns and the sympathetic shock waves which it generated throughout Mexican society have ushered in a whole new post-Marxist revolutionary era. By rejecting NAFTA and the Mexican government’s heavily financed claims to democracy and embracing Mexico’s revolutionary history (naming themselves after and basing their ideas on Emiliano Zapata), the Zapatistas (or EZLN) were able to call into question the entire world’s headlong march into corporate enslavement. What emerges from the collection of manifestoes, communiqués and interviews newly translated from Spanish that make up this book is that the Zapatistas are a very remarkable guerrilla movement, vastly different from our Oliver Stone-generated Salvador conceptions of a Central American revolution.
The EZLN are in fact of a coalition of indigenous Chiapas Indian tribes for whom Spanish is often a rarely used second language. Where the American media has painted Subcomandante Marcos as the swashbuckling mestizo leader of a humble band of ignorant but obedient indios, his writings and interviews, which make up the bulk of ¡Zapatistas!, suggest instead more of a witty and even poetic press liaison. Rather than waging Maoist revolution from a Pol Pot-style intellectual cabal, the Zapatistas see their actions as part of an overall matrix of economics, politics, and culture which will not be won “by the barrel of a gun” alone. As their mysterious ski-masked spokesman Subcomandante Marcos puts it, “we are not Fidel Schwarzennegger.”
The Zapatistas seem to be alert to the realities of the post-Cold War era as well as the grievous mistakes of Marxist guerrillas of the past. Nor are they falling for the bait of Liberation Theology and domination by the “radical wing” of the Catholic Church despite the brutal poverty and enforced lack of education which they have been stoically enduring. The EZLN seems to be run according to an organically autonomous type of collective system which has allowed these Indians to survive the 500 years since the arrival of the conquistadors with their language and culture intact. ¡Zapatistas! closes with the “Second Declaration From the Lacondona Jungle” of June 10, 1994, in which the EZLN rejects the Federal Government’s peace offer after consulting with their constituent villages, leaving one to believe that more history may well be written in this formerly forgotten corner of Mexico. SS

Publisher: Autonomedia
Paperback: 350 pages

The Land of the ZOG

Gary Smith

ZOG = Zionist Occupation Government. Land of the ZOG begins with a light-hearted investigation into the ZOG “myth” and winds up explaining the real meaning of the Book of Revelation—666 is the six-pointed Star of David! In between, the hidden hand of Jewish/Israeli government influence on Washington and the media is explored (half-Jewish movie stars such as Robert De Niro are also outed), the “kosher tax” on food is decried, the Talmud is analyzed, and more. Chapters include “Parasites-Human and Otherwise,” “Jew-nited We Stand,” “Shoah Biz” and “The Last Temptation of Hollywood.” SS

Publisher: Emissary
Paperback: 176 pages

The Making of a Serial Killer: The Real Story of the Gainesville Murders in the Killer’s Own Words

Danny Rolling and Sondra London

A collaborative autobiography by Florida murderer Danny Rolling with “Media Queen” and romancer of serial killers (after they’re safely behind bars) Sondra London. While Rolling has certainly done some nasty deeds, thankfully he has also found Jesus—and when he did kill people he was always possessed by an evil spirit, such as “Gemini.” Perhaps we can all learn from the words of Danny (since he has allowed himself to experience a few forbidden pleasures along life’s way): “Right and good always follow the heavenly. Wrong and evil produce nothing but HELL.” Includes Rolling’s prison drawings as illustrations plus some frightening portraits of his lady-love Sondra. SS

Publisher: Feral House
Paperback: 250 pages

Severed: The True Story of the Black Dahlia Murder

John Gilmore

The grisly murder in 1947 of aspiring starlet and nightclub habitué Elizabeth Short, known even before her death as the “Black Dahlia,” has over the decades transmogrified from L.A.’s “crime of the century” to an almost mythical symbol of unfathomable Hollywood Babylon/film noir glamor-cum-sordidness. Author John Gilmore certainly has an odd assortment of credentials for this assignment: His dad was an LAPD officer at the time of the murder and was involved in the citywide dragnet immediately after Short’s body was discovered; he was a rebel-type young actor in the ‘50s carousing Hollywood with the likes of James Dean, Dennis Hopper, and Vampira; in the ‘60s he wrote two out-of-print, true crime-classics: The Tucson Murders about the Speedway Pied Piper, Charles Schmid, and one of the first books out on the Manson Family, The Garbage People. It is somehow appropriate that he should be the one to unravel the multilayered mystery of this archetypal unsolved Hollywood slaying as it begins to recede into the collective memory somewhere next to Bluebeard and Jack the Ripper. The murder has become better-known to most as the fictionalized subject matter of noir-stylized, self-consciously “hard-boiled” James Ellroy’s Black Dahlia.
In Severed, Gilmore tells several previously unrevealed stories at once, each filled with its own bizarre elements, illustrated by some remarkably gruesome crime-scene photos where the book more than lives up to its title. One is the tale of victim Elizabeth Short, small-town beauty queen with big hopes who seemed to somnambulistically drift through her tragically futile life, already an alluring yet doom-laden enigma. Another is the tangled inside story of the police investigation and remorseless Hearst-stoked press hoopla which ran parallel to it. Yet another is the twisted psychology and down-and-out life story of the actual murderer and his indirect “confession” wherein he fingers his female impersonator pal Morrison as the supposed killer. Then there is the suppressed information about Elizabeth Short’s congenital anatomical deficiency and the murderer’s ritualistic “correction” of it… It would be hard to swallow it all if it weren’t for all those authorities—from Kenneth Anger to Detective William Herrmann of the LAPD—on the back cover endorsing this bombshell of a report. SS

Publisher: Amok
Paperback: 288 pages

The Death and Resurrection of the Beloved Son: The Transfiguration of Child Sacrifice in Judaism and Christianity

Jon D. Levenson

A Jewish theologian and expert in ancient Near Eastern languages at Harvard University demonstrates how the shared historic basis of Judaism and Christianity is in child sacrifice—the “offering of the first-born son.” Through cross-cultural comparisons to Canaanite and Phoenician religious practices and contemporary interpretations of the original Hebrew and Aramaic Bible verses, Levenson explores how the practice of ritually sacrificing the first-born son was once a demonstration of extreme piety in ancient Israel—substitution of an animal like a ram was an option for the less devout petitioners to Yahweh. Establishes parallels between Abraham’s near-sacrifice of Isaac (substituted for by a lamb) and God’s sacrifice of his own beloved first son, Jesus (also known as the Lamb). SS

Publisher: Yale University
Paperback: 257 pages

España Occulta: Public Celebrations in Spain, 1974-1989

Cristina García Rodero

A collection of 126 haunting, large-format photos taken over a 15-year period which bring out the intrinsically surreal aspects of life in current-day rural Spain. Children impaled on crosses, ominous masked penitents, phallic street processions, rampaging bulls, fierce drag queens, midget toreadors, cheerful and seemingly inbred revelers, the mysterious march of the “wax-heads”—the semi-pagan, semi-medieval public festivals which inspired Luis Buñuel from his childhood onward are depicted in all their brooding glory. SS

Publisher: Smithsonian Institution
Paperback: 135 pages