The strange death of Robert Maxwell

I love spy movies, especially when they reveal true facts and trade-craft. For a long time, my favorite in the genre was The Manchurian Candidate, which introduced both martial arts and mind control to America. Unfortunately, Hollywood did a terrible remake a few years ago. (The book by Richard Condon, however, is a masterpiece, just like the original film.)

A few years ago, Roman Polanski did an excellent job with The Ghost Writer, capturing the fog of paranoia surrounding a deep political event. (Such fog can be manufactured to conceal controllers of a managed confrontation.) Carlos, about Ilich Sanchez, is another great spy miniseries that could have been better if the director had been allowed to keep his original soundtrack (by The Feelies), but unfortunately, the band didn’t want their music identified so closely with a terrorist.

One of my all-time favorites, however, is Munich, directed by Steven Spielberg, based on the life of  Juval Aviv, an Israeli soldier put in charge of an assassination squad to avenge the deaths of Israeli athletes killed by the Black September terrorists during the 1972 Summer Olympics. There were probably three such squads actually created and for years they remained one of Israel’s most closely guarded secrets.

As the story unravels, however, the assassination team begins to suspect they are eliminating moderate leaders of the Palestinian movement to make way for more violent extremists to take their place. Meanwhile, the real instigator of the bloody Munich operation was being hidden and protected by the CIA.

The most revealing detail from the film is the existence of a network in Europe that provides weapons, fake ID’s and safe houses to terrorists (for a fee). This network can also clean up any mess left behind after an assassination. Although the network works with any terrorist, left or right-wing, they refuse to deal directly with any government agency of any country.

After watching the movie and reading the book, I could not help but surmise this network was, in fact, Operation Gladio, the “stay-behind” secret army set-up by NATO in the event that socialism might spread throughout Europe. Apparently, Gladio financed false flag terror operations all around Europe to discredit the left-wing. Gladio was revealed by the Italian Prime Minister in 1990 in an attempt to do damage control on the Propaganda Due scandal.

When I discovered Aviv’s security company (Interfor) was based in New York City, I called his office to see if I could arrange an interview. Aside from the crucial Gladio question, I also planned to query him regarding Michael Harari, who had led a team just like Aviv’s. Harari later surfaced in the Iran-Contra scandal and I thought Aviv might have some interesting background on Harari’s alleged involvement in money laundering with Manuel Noriega.

Much to my surprise, Aviv agreed to do a one-hour interview. After High Times expressed no interest, I posted the highlights on Youtube. The first episode was titled: “Juval Aviv is the Real Zohan.” Aviv would neither confirm nor deny that Operation Gladio was the identity of the terror network. He admitted that contrary to the impression left by the movie, he remains a dedicated supporter of Israel who would fly to its defense if necessary. He admitted explosives probably contributed to the fall of the Twin Towers, but stated they could have been illegally stockpiled in a federal office, which would require a cover-up of their existence. He didn’t want to discuss the Israeli Art Students but admitted the Mossad was watching most of the 9/11 terrorists and they provided information on them to the CIA and FBI. He feels that info was not acted upon out of neglect, but also admits there could have been a deeper motivation. He cringed when asked if Harari was “the greatest Mossad agent of all time,” and I got the impression he and Harari might be contesting for that honor. After I turned off the camera and got ready to leave, he dropped a number of bombshells, first telling me he was one of the last people to speak with Danny Casolaro.

“Danny was talking to Lester Coleman and investigating Pan Am 103,” said Aviv, who then added: “I tried to talk about the JFK assassination with Bill Clinton, but he didn’t want to discuss it.” It felt like Aviv was letting me know he had not given up the store in my one-hour grilling, and still had plenty of juicy conspiracy stories left in reserve.

Later, I discovered Aviv had been hired by Ghislaine Maxwell to find out what had happened to her father, certainly an expensive investigation that may have been at partially funded by her child-abusing sugar daddy, Jeffrey Epstein.

Using is contacts in the Mossad, Aviv was able to piece the story together. After Maxwell’s financial house of cards began collapsing, he lost all contact with reality and began ordering Israel to give him a few billion to bail him out. Maxwell’s judgment was growing so increasingly erratic, he was labeled a threat to Israel’s national security, especially since he’d worked on so many intel ops and had connections into British, Soviet and American intelligence.

Among his more important ops was the sale of a pirated software called Promis, which had been the earliest attempt to merge artificial intelligence and data collection. Promis transformed tracking of terrorists by connecting every possible online platform. Sneakily, a backdoor had been secretly installed so the Mossad could follow along with any investigations. Imagine their delight when dozens of countries installed Promis, including Iraq, and when Operation Desert Storm began, the Mossad assisted the Pentagon greatly through their backdoor surveillance.

Once Maxwell began making demands he might embarrass Israel if not treated properly, a 4-man hit team began assembling. Maxwell was told he would get the bailout, but needed to motor his mega-yacht, the Lady Ghislaine, to the Canary Islands and await further instructions. Maxwell might have believed his bail-out would arrive in the form of gold he’d help transfer out of the Russia immediately after the fall of Communism.

Meanwhile, a hit team flew in posing as tourists with fishing poles, rented a boat and began shadowing the Lady Ghislaine. One night two frogmen slipped on board the Lady Ghislaine, injected Maxwell with an air bubble, and tossed him overboard.  He was not immediately missed and the body not found for days, and cause of death listed as “accidental drowning” after a member of the crew explained Maxwell liked to urinate over the side at night and must have fallen overboard while doing do.

How Rick Simpson got started

From the time he was 12 years old, Rick Simpson just wanted a job so he could make some money. He was smart enough to get by in school without having to open a book, so education wasn’t something he took very seriously. After getting in trouble for supplying his teacher with a case of beer as a Christmas present in the 9th grade, he dropped out rather than face the consequences from the school administrators. At age 16, he went to work in the steel mills in Ontario, Canada. Two years later, he moved back to his hometown in Spring Hill, Nova Scotia, and got married. Before long, he had a job maintaining boilers for All Saints’ Hospital. Then his cousin was diagnosed with cancer.
“They found a little bump on his rib cage and cut him open. He went from 200 pounds down to about 130. In 1972 we were having a drink and he collapsed right in front of me. I knew damn well it had to be the cancer coming back. They gave him six months to live, and he made it through three. I was 22 years old and didn’t know anyone who had died from cancer. He was down to about 50 pounds when he died on November 18, 1972. I used to shave him and it was like trying to shave a skeleton.”
Two years after his cousin died, Simpson was listening to his car radio when he heard the results of a medical study from the University of Virginia claiming THC reduced brain tumors in mice.
“I stopped my car and just stared at the radio,” recalls Simpson. “At the time, I didn’t smoke pot or anything, although most of my friends did. The guy on the radio was laughing like a fool. Like this was all a big joke. I never heard anything more about it, so I thought it must be a joke.”
It was no joke. The Medical College of Virginia had been funded by the National Institute of Health to find evidence marijuana damaged the immune system. Imagine their surprise when the results came back indicating the opposite effect: instead of hastening the death of mice implanted with brain cancer, marijuana dramatically slowed the growth of their tumors and extended their lives.

Jonathan Kay’s Cult Politics

It’s certainly illuminating watching the advance promotion of Jonathan Kay’s selective history of crackpot conspiracy theory, a book is designed to throw a net over every person who questions the official story of 9/11. The national media has fallen over itself to praise the book long before its release. The latest tactic has been to link “birthers” with “truthers.” Personally, I never went for the bait on Obama’s birth certificate. But when finally produced, it was employed for maximum political advantage. In case of major political conspiracies, the intelligence agencies control the details. That’s one reason why they fostered a “truth” network obsessed with micro-details. They’ve created a landscape they can dominate, a landscape they have pocketed with “rabbit  holes” leading nowhere. Meanwhile, as everyone becomes transfixed by micro details and following rabbit holes, the big picture disappears.

In his Salon interview, Kay makes a couple of interesting statements:

“In the case of 9/11 conspiracy theories, the original theories were created in late 2001. But when they really took off was 2003 and 2004 when it was discovered there were no WMDs in Iraq, and people did feel deceived….It’s a cult. And you can’t disabuse a cult member of their beliefs, because it’s central to their identity. Hardcore conspiracy theorists are attached to their conspiracy theories with the same force of conviction that religious adherents are attached to their religions. You can’t rationally convince someone not to be a Christian or a Scientologist. That’s their identity, that’s who they are.”

Kay is flat-out wrong on his timeline concerning the “truth” movement. Within days of the event, websites and discussion groups were flooded with wild conspiracy stories, the first of which was that “no planes hit the Twin Towers” (but they were brought down by holograms and super-advanced explosives). Very quickly followed the “no plane hit the Pentagon,” and this was the deepest rabbit hole of all. Finally, “no plane crashed in Pennsylvania.” A deluge of this material seemed to arrive all at once, as if prepared in advance.

As part of this campaign, all video and photos from the Pentagon and surrounding area were immediately confiscated and only one set of images has been released, and they show only an explosion with no plane in sight. If, someday, the Pentagon decides to release a photo or video of the actual plane hitting the building, it will be handled with maximum propaganda effect to silence the conspiracy community.

In the USA only 16% of people believe the government’s version of events, while in Germany, 90% of the people believe our government was actually involved. And yet, according to Kay, any American who fails to toe the government line should be branded a “truther” and shunned from the corridors of sanity? I hope someday Congress can actually instigate a real investigation and follow the evidence wherever it goes. And in the meantime, can we stop branding intelligent people as cultists, especially considering we’re in the majority?

Among the Truthers versus Extreme Prejudice

Jonathan Kay’s Among the Truthers is getting the most favored royal treatment in the press.  I like the Wall Street Journal headline best: “Beyond the Lunatic Fringe.” I guess that includes anyone who doesn’t swallow the official conspiracy story Al-Qaeda was the sole mastermind of 9/11?

This newly identified “lunatic fringe” would certainly have included John F. Kennedy, who warned his country about a global business cartel that opposed his policies. In fact, Kennedy made several speeches denouncing this cartel (which I call The Octopus, because its tentacles touch nearly everything and it creates wars for profit through dialectical processes).

“We are opposed around the world by a monolithic and ruthless conspiracy,” warned JFK on April 27, 1961. He began this speech by denouncing secret societies. And this happened at a formal press event that would have been attended by numerous secret society members from many societies, all working as PR shills for an Octopus media corporation. Kennedy was fearless and I guess that’s why the Octopus took him down.

But times have changed, and now there’s a new mindset being constructed. And in this new zeitgeist, anyone who doesn’t agree with the establishment version of events from now on…. is a disturbed lunatic needing psychiatric care and forced medication?

This campaign began slowly with the creation of the word “conspiracism” to describe anyone who believes the world is governed by shadow forces. And under the Patriot Act, these people can be forced into mental hospitals against their will. And if you doubt any of this insanity has actually come to fruition in America, consider that Susan Lindauer’s Extreme Prejudice came out the same time as Among the Truthers, but it won’t be getting the royal press treatment. It will be ignored. That’s because Lindauer was a Defense Intelligence asset who claims prior knowledge of 9/11 was widespread in the intelligence community. Immediately after she began speaking out after the event, she was charged with treason and forced into a mental hospital. Held in jail incommunicado for years and declared “mentally unfit to stand trial” because she would not submit to forced medication, she was finally released in 2009 after all charges against her were finally dropped.

Isn’t it transparent that the lunatic fringe, symbolized by its shining star David Icke, is an Octopus PR creation? First they create a lunatic, then they make sure all who don’t agree with them are lumped in with that lunatic into one big lunatic fringe.

And that’s how they eliminated dissent in our lifetime in America, the land of the free.

No Truth to Osama Murder Story

How come a fake photo of Osama Bin Laden (complete with possible entry wound near left eye) was immediately circulated to the global press? And why did initial stories claim there was a 40-minute “firefight,” when, in fact, the SEAL team met with zero resistance? And why was Bin Laden immediately killed and the body dropped at sea with no further identification possible? And why is the global media acting like Bin Laden has already been proven guilty?

Maybe you’ve noticed by now Bin Laden’s compound was in one of most secure areas in Pakistan, around the corner from their version of West Point. It would be absurd to think the Pakistan military had zero knowledge of Bin Laden’s whereabouts in such an highly-guarded zone. Also absurd is the idea a SEAL team would land in the area without prior approval of Pakistan’s military command.

But the fishiest aspect of this unfortunate operation, which reminds me greatly of Lee Harvey Oswald, is that the most important witness will never take the stand to tell his side of the story.

I believe Al Qaeda is basically an opium-smuggling ring created when the ISI and CIA set up a proxy mercenary army to fight the Soviets in Afghanistan. After the Soviet withdrawal, this CIA-trained army, of which Osama was a member, was deployed to the Balkans, the pipeline where opium enters Europe. Opium is the most profit-intensive commodity on the planet, so anyone who gets involved in a large scale will become fantastically rich in a short time. After we invaded Afghanistan, we set-up a relative of the biggest opium war lord into power, and there’s evidence the CIA was providing arms and assistance to this opium war lord. Meanwhile, opium production has sky-rocketed since we took command. The real story is that the corrupt opium distribution system cannot exist without the money getting washed through our global banking institutions. And if we ever get serious about ending the opium cartels who are running this system, all we have to do is follow the money into the banks.

Immediately after Bin Laden was pronounced dead, a 9/11 family member personally asked Obama to drop the Gitmo investigation. Obama reportedly walked away without answering.

Pundits began using Osama’s death as a reason to end the torture investigations to no avail. Seems to me many 9/11 families ought to be smart enough to figure out the government’s been lying from day one about 9/11, and they could have brought back the most important witness alive but instead murdered him in cold blood in his bedroom in front of his family.

And now we’re supposed to be happy about this? And here’s the real rub: the person sheep-dipped as “the courier,” the Gitmo detainee, whose waterboarding supposedly made this operation possible, is the only other person besides Osama killed at the scene!

Very convenient he won’t be offering any views on this situation in a pubic court room. I saw some potential benefits to this operation:

1) Obama’s approval record was sinking, and the release of a birth certificate and now death of Osama are just what he needed;

2) The NSA/CIA may be close to a virtual monopoly on raw opium, along with whatever other crime syndicates they are working with;

3) Arab extremists will be forced to respond, insuring the cycle of death for profit continues (we are, after all, a “war” economy);

4) The 9/11 Truth Movement just lost a lot of credibility and will continue to erode as much of it is a controlled operation;  and, possibly most important:

5) The Gitmo torture investigation can now eventually be closed without public protest; and the “softening-up” process to make this possible has already begun in the media, thus insuring a former president and vice-president are not found guilty of war crimes.

All hail the House of Windsor?

The royal wedding is finally over and the global media blitz was certainly a case of “Wag the Dog” par excellence, creating the necessary awe to maintain the standings of the House of Windsor. In case you didn’t know, the “real” name for this royal family is actually Saxe-Coburg, which may be one reason they never use a last name. Dropping the “Windsor” insures their preeminence as the world’s leading royal family anyway. A top CIA official (Frank Wisner) once bragged about owning everyone of importance in the media, people he “played” like a giant Wurlitzer. Wag the Dog, it seems, is more real than unreal because our media is actually a controlled cartel, manufacturing consent for an agenda supporting the Oligarchies that really rule the earth. But if you know the puppets are playing the organ, the tunes can sometimes give away some secrets.  And while I’m on this subject, is there another royal family on earth treated with anything like the reverence afforded the British-German House of Hanover/Windsor? It seems strange for our supposedly democratic press to lavish so much attention supporting a class system that exists only to ensure a small minority maintain control over vast reserves of wealth and power. Isn’t that system an extreme form of racism? We know many film and TV studios, (as well as their Wall Street backers), are run by persons of Jewish descent, perhaps because Older Money swallowed the world’s primary profit centers (the biggest of which used to be sugar). According to Robert Anton Wilson, the Jewish wing of the global banking elite controls 20% of the system’s wealth. I guess that figure was provided by Bertrand Russell, so you can take that for what it’s worth. While some researchers claim the Federal Reserve is secretly controlled by the Rothschilds, how come Rothschild weddings are never seen or spoken of, much less celebrated with this intense hero-worship? The Rothschilds are, after all, accepted members of European royalty, just as “royal” as the House of Hanover. Seems to me the Pope may be the only living person who enjoys such universally positive promotion as the Windsors.  I suspect they may play a somewhat larger role in our lives than some realize. You’d almost think this was America’s royal family, not a former adversary in war. And if the wedding coverage isn’t enough to convince you of this possibility, consider the biggest impact on our Federal Reserve system in recent time was made by a man knighted by the Queen of England for service to her country. What’s that all about?

Ira Einhorn and the Origins of Earth Day

Maybe you’ve read some of the disinfo stories about how the counterculture was supposedly a government plot to divide and destroy the country? How government agents secretly encouraged rampant drug use in the 1960s to poison the minds of a new generation, allowing them to be brought under the influence of “new age” ideas?

I don’t believe most of these stories, especially the ones that paint Ken Kesey and the Merry Pranksters as being involved in such activities. Yes, Kesey did get his first taste of acid through a CIA-program, like a lot of people at the time, but anyone who studies his life immediately realizes Kesey was not on anyone’s leash. The same can be said for Abbie Hoffman, Stephen Gaskin and many other important leaders of the counterculture movement. Which is not to say intel wasn’t trying to exploit the counterculture, turn it violent and lead it off a cliff. Obviously, any social movement of any size will be quickly penetrated by intel. That’s what they do. And there are a number of suspicious characters, like Ron Stark, who obviously had secret agendas. Another such character is Ira Einhorn, who sometimes gets credited as one of the founders of the environmental movement.

Einhorn’s early claim to fame was his role as “master of ceremonies” at the first Earth Day celebration, but you won’t find that mentioned on the wikipedia page covering that event today, probably because he recently died on April 3, 2020 while serving a life sentence for murdering his ex-girlfriend, Holly Maddux, who was found stuffed in a trunk on his porch in 1979. Although portrayed as a “hippie guru,” Einhorn’s associations and connections seem much more related to CIA activities than anything to do with the hippie counterculture.

He was mentored in paranormal research by Andrija Puharich, a former army officer who has interesting connections not only to the intelligence agencies but also to the oligarchy that really rules North America. Puharich is best known today for bringing Uri Geller to fame, but he was also involved with MK/Ultra research at Fort Dietrick, as well as organizing black magic seances in upstate New York with members of the Bronfman and DuPont families, among others. You can find background material on Puharich in both Peter Levenda’s Sinister Forces (now out-of-print and very expensive), and Hank Albarelli’s A Terrible Mistake (both published by Trine Day).

There’s probably enough in those two books to convince you that anyone mentored by Puharich should be looked at with suspicion.

After Einhorn’s arrest, Arlen Specter, the Warren Commission lawyer who invented the “single bullet” theory, came to his rescue along with Barbara Bronfman, heiress to the Seagram fortune. At the time, Einhorn claimed he was being framed by the CIA because of his left-wing political activities.

Specter managed to get him a very low bail, which Bronfman posted, and Einhorn fled the country, probably with funds provided by Bronfman. In 1997, long after he was convicted in absentia, Einhorn was located living in France under a new name with a Swedish girlfriend. After a long and protracted extradition struggle, Einhorn was finally brought back to Pennsylvania on July 20, 2001, and put in jail to serve his life sentence.

The lesson to be taken from all of this is the potential realization that all popular mass movements eventually become penetrated by intelligence operations. The environmental movement of today, spearheaded by Al Gore, is undoubtedly also a carefully-constructed operation. The rightwing has their apocalypse, centered on the Middle East and ideas about “rapture,” while the leftwing has their apocalypse, centered on the imminent collapse of our environment. Apocalyptic thinking is crucial to maintaining mass mind control because fear is the foundation. The most apocalyptic of all the sixties cults was the Process Church of Final Judgment.

Pedophilia and the Vampire Mythology

Ever wonder why the vampire mythology seems to resonate so well today? Could it possibly be because there is a form of multi-generational violence being perpetrated that has been going on for a very, very long time? Pedophiles are the closest thing to vampires we have because abused children so often turn into child abusers later in life. And institutionalized pedophilia seems to run high these days, especially in the Catholic and Mormon cultures. When I brought up this fact on Quora recently, someone responded: “extraordinary charges demand extraordinary evidence.” I suggest anyone seeking this evidence read Nick Bryant’s recent book, The Franklin Scandal (http://franklinscandal.com/)

Or even easier, just watch Conspiracy of Silence.

Produced by the BBC, Conspiracy of Silence was scheduled to appear on the Discovery Channel on May 3rd, 1994, and was suddenly pulled days from that air date. All known copies were purchased and destroyed by person(s) unknown. Someday America is going to have to face the reality children have been routinely bought and sold as sex toys, and at least one of these operations seems to be protected by the CIA since many children make useful assets to help blackmail and control corrupt (but connected) individuals. Some of these children have even been turned into programmed robots under hypnotic commands. The Manchurian Candidate is real and the programs have been going on at least since the 1940s, when Nazi scientists were secretly brought into this country to continue their investigations into mind control.

Music, Math & Marijuana

In January 1990, High Times news editor Steve Bloom returned to the office from a trip to the Bay Area and brought with him a flyer for an April 20th event to be held at the top of Mount Tamalpias in Marin County. The flyer indicated that “420” was California police code for “marijuana smoking in progress.” Bloom thought the flyer was funny and a bit ridiculous, but I felt otherwise. Since I’d recently started my research into the spiritual history of cannabis use and was deep into the Rig Veda, I seized on the flyer as evidence of the spiritual powers of cannabis. “I’m gong to re-focus all my ceremonies around 4:20,” I told Bloom. “We can use 420 to spread awareness about the spiritual aspects of cannabis.” From that day on, I began holding 4:20 PM ceremonies in my office at High Times and proselytizing about 4:20. That’s because there’s a connection between math, music, marijuana and spirituality. Numerology has always intrigued me.

Imagine my surprise when Bloom published a one-paragraph mention of the flyer in his news section that month, but failed to mention my promise to use the number to help build the legalization movement, something I thought was pretty important news. I was disappointed I’d failed to penetrate my missionary zeal to my news editor, but remained undeterred and made 4:20 council the central focus of my legalization group, The Freedom Fighters, which at the time may have been the largest pro-pot organization in the world. The next time I returned to the Cup in Amsterdam, I brought 4:20 council with me, and it’s been there ever since. In fact, the 4:20 councils at the Cup were videotaped for 15 years, and highlights can be found on my Youtube site.

Eventually, the Cup crew, specifically the Temple Dragons, began holding 4:20 AM celebrations at the Quentin Hotel lobby. (This was Rocker T’s idea.) The 4:20 AM ceremonies quickly became crowded when word leaked out they were the best parties at the Cup. Hundreds of people took photos of themselves in the Quentin lobby next to a clock as proof they attended a 4:20 AM ceremony. In 1997, I began using 420 as a central element of the Whee! festival in Oregon, and the following year, the ceremony was picked up on by the Seattle Hempfest. If Whee had been allowed to continue, it would be as big as the Seattle Hempfest, but just as I was forced to give up the Freedom Fighters, I was also forced to give up the world’s biggest hempfest.

After 420 caught on, the tour agent, Air Tech, changed their name to “420 Tours.” They set up a website and were soon contacted by Steve Waldo, who indicated he and his friends started the 420. I flew out to San Francisco to meet with Steve and check out his claims. I returned to the office a few days later and announced I’d discovered the origins of 420, and it wasn’t a police code.

Unfortunately, then-publisher of High Times Mike Edison disputed my story and refused to accept the Waldos were, in fact, the true originators. Imagine my surprise when many years later Bloom tried to take credit for “discovering” 420, when he was one of those at the office that could never connect with my efforts along these lines. For Bloom, my attempts at forging an untainted ritual tradition for modern stoners was a bunch of mumbo-jumbo, and I’m sure he feels that way today.

Thus began my odyssey to tell the true history of 420. Now many people spread false stories and stake claims on having a better explanation, but no one can document the use of the term “420” as a reference to marijuana prior to 1971, other than Steve Waldo. And no one can document 420 ceremonies outside Marin county in the early 1990s aside from mine. It’s strange to read Cannabis Culture claim they were using the term in the mid-1990s (several years after I began my 420 ceremonies) when, in fact, Marc initially ridiculed my 420 council at the Cup when he attended the first time. I’m sure that’s where he heard about 420 for the first time, although he later wrote my attempts at “hippie spirituality” were out-dated, which broke off our relationship for a while, although I’m happy to say all that’s been patched up.

My homage to Samo in Beat Street

Just a curious question that recently dawned on me after watching the Basquiat film. Seeing that you were the original writer of “Beat Street,” was the Ramo character a not-so-thinly veiled reference to Jean-Michel and his SAMO moniker? If so, what a prophetic ending! –James

Great question, James. I don’t know how I came up with the name Ramon, I knew I had to switch up all the names and was looking for something original that had style. In my original script, a central character catching on fire in a subway tunnel was named Ramon, and his tag was DJ Ramo.

In dropping the “n,” I must have been thinking about Jean-Michel’s tag, Samo. So I guess it is sort of a nod in his direction. The climax in my script involved Ramon catching on fire in a subway tunnel. It was a depiction of what happened to Ali when he was painting one night with Futura 2000. A spark by a passing train set off a can of spray-paint whose nozzle was hissing. Ali was covered by flaming paint and barely survived. While in the hospital, he gave a famous interview to the New York Times about the dangers of graffiti writing. In embellishing his story, he claimed to have been abandoned by Futura while on flames.

Futura actually put out the fire and took him to the emergency room. After the story was printed, however, no one would believe Futura’s version and he was forced to join the Navy to get a ticket out of town for a few years. My original script was called Looking for the Perfect Beat and was very, very different from what eventually came out. In fact, the main characters’ names were almost all that survived. Someday, maybe Looking for the Perfect Beat will actually get produced.

Henry Chalfant was a super cool dude, one of the first photographers to document NYC graffiti. Manny Kirchheimer was the first filmmaker, and his film “Stations of the Elevated” is online. While I was working on Beat Street, Henry was just completing Style Wars, which was largely the work of Tony Silver. Tony I didn’t like so much. It was Tony’s idea to build Style Wars around Cap.
Belafonte and his crew already had my script, a realistic portrayal of a budding rap group trying to make a record. Slice of life and It also had a Romeo-Juliet style story concerning a South Bronx rapper hooking up with a girl from a privileged background.
But when Belafonte got a sneak preview of Style Wars, everything changed and my script was tossed and they began writing a new one using my characters names, and it was all about Cap, who they renamed Spit.
Cap was never mentioned in my book or my script. But when I asked Phase 2 who were the current kings, Cap was the first name he mentioned. “You have to give him props, because he’s so up,” said Phase.
Graffiti was divided into crews and crews had conflicts that sometimes included dissing each other’s work. Sometimes it involved tag rights, like the conflict between Snake and Snake-1. Snake 1 began adding “king of all snakes” to his tag.
Cap was not the loner they portrayed him as. He was in the Morris Park Crew, some of whom were dust heads. Instead of asking Phase or Tracy about Cap and his crew, Silver focussed on the younger writers in opposing crews building Cap up as the evil villain of graf, dissing the most sacred rules. Some of those kids were scared to death of Cap in real life, but in the film they talked big shit about how somebody was going to cap Cap. I imagine some of that drama could have been coached and encouraged by Tony.
Eventually, Cap was run out of the crew so demonized was he by Style Wars and Beat Street.
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLLfd8EAs_NNfxgDBIasYIDck5b-nXM-2n