GANGSTERS!? What the heck, man?

The gangster spirit survives and must be dealt with.



We should not create a paradise for gangsters.

I could not agree with the sentiment more, could you? We shouldn’t create a paradise for gangsters. Gangsters would disrupt our peace and we don’t want that, now do we?

Yes. I got a new crappy old book today and was thumbing through it. A Basis for the Peace to Come: The Merrick-McDowell Lectures for 1942. The quote comes from John Foster Dulles’ contribution, “Toward World Order.”

Dulles, as you may recall was a Secretary of State. A diplomat back in the crappy olden days before iThingys and not-iThings. In other words, back in the days when a gangster could just light a match and poof! What evidence?

I don’t know enough about Dulles to have an opinion on the worth of his life, or the value of his service to his country. I don’t know what controversies may have surrounded him while he was climbing the political ladder or as the issues of his time passed him by. I came across one small grain of information that tips the scales in Dulles’ favor regarding him as a man, but I don’t know the details and I never will. So I have no opinion about him.

What I do know is that every thoughtful person has an opportunity to observe, and if inclined, to memorialize those observations. If such a thoughtful individual was in a position of “authority”– as a Secretary of State would be– his or her observations, though tinted by world- and self-views, could nevertheless be informative, especially in retrospect.

(OMG! I just remembered we went to a Condi Rice lecture at State a couple of years ago!)

And so here we have Dulles observing that when order breaks down– earlier paragraphs indicate that what he means by “authority” is orderly or common national courtesy behavior based on common sentiment– the gangsters move in.

Hel-l-l-lo!!! What was your first clue?

“Hello! Hallo! A hoy hoy!”


“Oh my gosh, Missy! I’m so sorry! I didn’t mean to wake you!”

“Well it’s too late now! Now I am wide awake. Why in Heaven’s name would you shout out ‘Hello’ in the middle of the night?”


“I dunno. And again, I am sorry. I was just working through some thoughts in my head and I had a moment.”

“Well, now that I’m awake, I– as your faithful companion– am here to listen if you need me.”


“Gosh! Thanks, Missy! You are such a good listener.”


“Go back to sleep, Dear Friend. Marica and I are having a conversation.”


“Rocky, You look confused. Go back to bed, Boy.”

“So, anyway, Missy. Here’s what I was thinking about. I’m thinking that history doesn’t just repe… . Missy? Missy?”