Book Review: Hillbilly Elegy (2016)

Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis
By JD Vance, reviewed by Brian R. Wright

The reviews of Hillbilly Elegy have been almost universally positive, expressing an appreciation in particular of “the real people who are kept out of sight by academic abstractions” (per Peter Thiel, author of Zero to One). We are speaking of the southeastern US ‘hillbillies,’ who come from Scots-Irish stock and are a major political-social grouping in America. Mr. Vance gives us a mem- orable down to earth rendering of a culture that is certainly relegated by the elites of the political class into facts and figures. He gives us a bird’s eye view, a gonzo journalistic, ‘you are there,’ day by day account of his own days of growing up from his Kentucky homeland and southern Ohio.

From the front jacket: Hillbilly Elegy is a passionate and personal analysis of a culture in crisis—that of poor, white [mainly, Appalachian—ed.] Americans. The disintegration of this group, a process that has been slowly occurring now for over 40 years, has been reported with growing frequency and alarm, but has never been written about as searingly from the inside. In Hillbilly Elegy, JD Vance tells the true story of what a social, regional, and class decline feels like when you were born with it hanging around your neck.

Myself hailing from middle-class Overland Park, Kansas, then mainly the Detroit, Michigan, suburbs as I reached my 20s, I have known many people who ‘came from the south,’ to work in the automotive world and the more industrialized north. In fact, one of the people I most respect in the world was my first real boss, in the mid-1970s aerospace, Jim Cline, hailing from good ol’ boy Hickory, North Carolina. I can hear the drawl now. Vance writes of his kin: Continue reading

Brian’s Column: Let’s ‘Bring It’ to the Doreen Hearing, April 9

Pete Hendrickson’s wife facing sentencing following heresy conviction

screenprintNow is the time to step up en masse. I’ve already included as a guest column former Troy major, Janice Daniels, rallying of the forces of local-cum-national freedom. And in my book on the trial, The Motor City Witchcraft Trial(s), I propose gathering at least a thousand individuals to flood the courtroom and the city of Detroit:

“Think of it a minute: tens of thousands of Americans have recovered tens of millions of dollars in hard-earned wealth thanks to Doreen’s husband’s discoveries. Discoveries on account of which the government is willing to horrifically attack Pete’s wife: to send a message to people like ourselves—to the tax-truth community at large. The feds want you to stand down.

“Instead, stand up!

“Wherever you live in the country, figure out a way to get to Detroit and the Levin Courthouse on April 09, 2015. It’s easy, parking across the street is $10 per day, that’s a couple of lattes. Get the latest information from What do you think will be the impact of having a thousand people queued up outside of the courtroom milling around in the hallways?!”

[Note: the sentencing hearing has been postponed for no reason, twice. So please keep checking at until the scheduled time.] Continue reading

Brian’s Column: Detroit Breakdown and New Pledge of Allegiance

Omen of the Times, Need to Rethink America, New Citizen’s Oath

ManMauledDetroitFrankly, I’m reluctant to lead with such a horrifying story that heralds the degeneration into Third World chaos in what was once a damned fine city… and believe it or not, still can be again. But we’re all going to have to face facts that affect the whole rest of Michigan, the country, and the world. [If you want to read the report on a man who was mauled to (probable) death, then click on the scanned column segment here on the right from Saturday’s (10/4/2014) Detroit Free Press.]

Savage behavior unleashed on unsuspecting persons is not confined to the Motor City or Rust Belt cities that have been destroyed by the ‘Podocracy'[1]—via runaway statism. And this incident in unfortunate Detroit should serve as a wake-up call across the world that Western civilization stands in dire peril of complete collapse… if enough of us who can still think for ourselves do not make a clear stand. Continue reading

Brian’s Column: Motor City Witchcraft Trial(s) Published

Book to free Doreen Hendrickson and share the love of Cracking the Code

WitchcraftThe Motor City Witchcraft Trial(s) is a diary of the so-called trial of Doreen Hendrickson in federal court for criminal contempt for ‘refusing to obey a lawful order of a judge.’ [The judge commanded Doreen to perjure herself on a tax form by entering a specific value in a specific line of a specific government form… which, of course, Doreen, being an honest, brave woman, refused to do.]

Doreen is the wife of Peter Hendrickson, author of Cracking the Code (CtC): The fascinating truth about taxation in America[1] (2003). This book has gained quite a following across the country for fluently yet painstakingly demonstrating that the federal so-called income tax, while constitutional, simply and solely applies to Americans whose earnings are due to exercise of federal privilege—via fed employment, officeholding, and the like. Continue reading

Movie Review: The Anatomy of a Great Deception

How Building 7 woke me up
by David Hooper

Anatomy1This column is as much a ‘Happening’ review as a movie review. The Happening is the actual debut of the film, occurring in Detroit, Michigan, at the Fillmore entertainment center (for most of its life, the State Theatre) on September 5, 2014. Mr. Hooper, producer and writer/director of the film, has pointed me to an early draft version of Anatomy for review purposes. And… I… am… so… glad… he… did!

Like David, I came to question the official story of the 9/11/2001 attacks several years after they took place. But unlike David, my frustration in not being able to get friends, family, and huckleberries to so much as look at the evidence did not lead to creation of a deeply personal movie as a way around these obstacles. The same may be said for the soon-to-be millions of 9/11 truth activists (and Gandhian Satyagraha activists)[1] around the world. Despite mountains of evidence and persistent strong reasoning from objective reality, our collective batting average in convincing others to look at the evidence has been approximately 0.015… and that’s counting walks as singles.:) Continue reading

Guest Column: Detroit Breakdown

Notes from some East Side kids back in the day (orignally posted 6/6/11)
by Rose Wright

Editor’s Preface: Detroit is in the commentary sphere lately with one Frosty Wooldridge, a former resident of the Motor City, opening up with a fairly one-sided lament. You can read the October 2009 piece here, and the introductory sentence gives you the flavor:

For 15 years, from the mid 1970s to 1990, I worked in Detroit, Michigan. I watched it descend into the abyss of crime, debauchery, gun play, drugs, school truancy, car-jacking, gangs and human depravity. Continue reading