In 1963, President Kennedy had acquired a far greater and more potent group of enemies than had any President before him, including Franklin Roosevelt. From the CIA, to the Pentagon, to Wall Street banks and financiers, to businessmen who were part of the military-industrial complex, to Organized Crime, to right-wing fanatics and segregationists, and finally to Texas oil millionaires -- all of these groups had been or were about to be undercut or stymied by the Kennedy Administration in their attempts to hold, let alone increase their power and influence within our Republic.
JFK had shaken the CIA to its core, by firing Allen Dulles -- along with many of the Agency's other highest ranking officials -- after the Bay of Pigs disaster. A compliant White House under Eisenhower and Nixon had been replaced by the Kennedy White House, which had profound doubts about the functions, let alone the need, for a large-scale operational espionage arm whose main purpose was not the gathering of information from foreign sources, but black ops, dirty tricks, and regime destabilization against our "enemies," i.e., any country that did not acquiesce to our agenda.
You must not doubt for an instant, that the lessons of John Perkins' economic hit men have been learned and applied by the power elite of this country, to this country, with a frightening degree of success. What works in the macro, also works in the micro. If the CIA could gain control of Iran by killing Mohammed Mossadegh, why not America by killing JFK.
The military's hierarchy was not kindly disposed towards the Kennedy White House. They disliked Robert S. McNamara and his "Whiz Kids," and they thought that JFK had wasted a perfectly good opportunity to invade Cuba and overthrow Castro in October 1962. The new Partial Nuclear Test Ban Treaty was viewed as appeasement of the Soviets, and the Generals and Admirals knew President Kennedy was considering a total withdrawal from Vietnam, leaving it to Ho Chi Minh and the Communists. If JFK did this, it would be hard to maintain the military at its current inflated size, and if Congress reduced the military's size, assignments would devolve to lower ranks, with fewer opportunities for career advancement.
The industrialists of the Military-Industrial Complex were not happy with JFK either. President Kennedy had proven his no-nonsense attitude in June of 1963 when he took away contracts from several of the nation's largest steel makers (including Bethlehem Steel and U.S. Steel) -- after getting both them and their unions to agree to keep prices and wages down to prevent the onset of an inflationary spiral. He gave the lucrative Pentagon contracts to smaller firms who agreed to produce the steel at the contracted price. JFK took this principled stand, that a contract was a contract, and adding additional costs after the fact by the contractor (which had been standard operating procedure under the Eisenhower-Nixon Administration), was not going to happen under his watch. (Compare this to the actions of the Bush Administration regarding Halliburton, Blackwater -- now Xe -- and Kellogg, Brown, and Root and their no-bid contracts in Iraq 40 years later.) President Kennedy would be his own Truman Committee if he had to be.
The bankers and financiers of Wall Street despised President Kennedy, because of his decision in mid-1963 to circumvent the Federal Reserve, and begin issuing United States Notes directly from the U.S. Treasury Department, rather than through the intermediary of the banks of the Federal Reserve.
Now you ask, "Why is that important?" Because the member banks of the Federal Reserve are allowed to charge the Federal Government a service fee of 1/4 of one percent on the currency they issue through their banks. On one billion dollars, that is a service fee of two-and-one-half million dollars ($2,500,000.00).
Nice work if you can find it.
That's for all currency issued: replacement currency for old bills destroyed by the Treasury as well as any new currency to prevent us from entering into a deflationary slide that is the second half of an economic depression. The six hundred billion dollars that the Fed is planning to release in the near future is worth one-and-one-half billion dollars to the Federal Reserves member banks.
I'm obviously in the wrong business. Mario Puzo was right: a man with a briefcase can steal more in an hour, than a man with a gun can in a lifetime.
Organized Crime was very unhappy as well. Attorney General Robert Kennedy's Justice Department had done more against Organized Crime than any group of Federal prosecutors had in history to that point. Jimmy Hoffa was in jail; Carlos Marcello had been deported (probably illegally); Joe Valachi became the first "made man" to break the Mafia's "sacred" law of Omerta, in front of a Congressional committee, giving America its first inside view of the workings of La Cosa Nostra. Suddenly, the Mob wasn't something that had disappeared when Prohibition had been repealed, Lucky Luciano deported, and Louis "Lepke" Buchalter executed.
Then you had the people on the far right: individuals who thought Barry Goldwater was a moderate, and that America was on the wrong side in World War II. Klansmen, neo-Nazis, racists and segregationists of every stripe were part of this group. Anti-communist paranoids like Texas oilman Fred Koch, who believed that Eisenhower was a Communist, and who helped found the John Birch Society when he learned that JFK was running for President. They found President Kennedy's rapprochement with Khrushchev, together with his tacit support for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and the Civil Rights movement, to be proof beyond a reasonable doubt that the Communists had taken over the United States government.
Finally there were the Texas oilmen, who had relied upon an oil depletion allowance of 27-and- percent to achieve wealth for themselves and their families of over or close to one billion dollars. H.L. Hunt, and his sons Lamar, Bunker, and Nelson; Clint Murchison; the aforementioned Fred Koch and his children -- all of them saw their fortunes threatened by President Kennedy's promise that under the new tax code, while the upper marginal rate would be reduced from 91 to 71 percent, the oil depletion allowance would almost be cut in half to 14-and- percent, which would roughly half the Texas oil barons tax exempt income.
Of the groups arrayed against John Kennedy in 1963, only organized crime, under the control of New York's Five Families and Chicago's Outfit, has ceased to be an effective component within our nation's power structure. Today's "organized crime" has become a far more globally diversified group of Russians, Mexicans, Colombians, Jamaicans, Chinese, Japanese, and the dross of dozens of other countries who make alliances of convenience, that last only as long as a particular enterprise.
Organized crime has in many cases become so intertwined with wealthy individuals, government and other enterprises around the world that it is sometimes impossible to distinguish one from the other, whether you want to talk about the CIA's poppy fields in the Golden Triangle of Southeast Asia, Russian banks that are in part run by the Russian Mob, the Mexican Mafia that has become a virtual second government in much of Mexico, or right-wing lunatics who hide behind the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and Karl Rove (among others) to finance ads against politicians who have been thorns in their side.
The others: the CIA, the Pentagon and the rest of the Military-Industrial Complex; the Federal Reserve and the rest of the Wall Street financiers; the right-wing fanatics and bigots who love the cheap illegal labor but hate the laborer; the Texas oil barons who are willing to spend millions to get a President elected who will take over a nation with the world's second largest proven oil reserves for them, and gut America's environmental laws like a trout: all of them are still there, poised to finish the destruction of the Constitution that they and their predecessors started that grim November afternoon in Dallas.