The Murdering State

“Thou shalt not kill ” (Exodus 20:13).

“Jesus said, Thou shalt do no murder” (Matthew 19:18).

It is obvious to all but its most ardent defenders that the state is built and maintained by deception, disinformation, falsehood, and lies. But in addition to characterizing the state as the lying state, it can also be called the murdering state.

When most people think of murderers they think of serial killers like Ted Bundy, Gerald Stano, Donald Harvey, John Wayne Gacy, Gerald Schaefer, Patrick Kearney, Dean Corll, or Jeffrey Dahmer.

Ted Bundy stalked young women on college campuses, at shopping malls, and in apartment buildings in Washington, Oregon, Utah, Idaho, Colorado, and Florida. He killed at least twenty-two women before he was executed by the state of Florida in 1989.

Gerald Stano spent the 1970s killing prostitutes, runaways, and hitchhiking teenagers in Florida, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. He is reputed to have killed forty-one women. After first being arrested in 1978, he was finally executed by the state of Florida in 1998.

Donald Harvey was a nurse who “mercy” killed his patients from the early 1970s to 1987. He was convicted of thirty-four deaths but some believe that he actually murdered eighty-seven.

John Wayne Gacy liked to dress in a homemade Pogo the Clown outfit to entertain kids. But he also liked to torture, rape, and kill young boys. In 1978 police in Chicago found thirty bodies buried under his house. He was executed by lethal injection in 1994.

Gerard Schaefer was a Florida deputy sheriff who lured young women off the roads with the help of his badge — only to torture, mutilate, and murder them. He was convicted in 1973 of only two murders, but is believed to be responsible for at least thirty more. Schaefer was found dead in his cell at the Florida State Prison in Starke. He had been stabbed forty-two times in the head and neck, and his throat was slashed.

Patrick Kearney was a California freeway killer who left his dismembered victims neatly wrapped in trash bags along the highway. The “Trash Bag Murders” ended in 1977 when Kearney surrendered. It is thought that he had twenty-eight victims.

Dean Corll enjoyed killing young boys in the comfort of his own home. He was shot and killed by one of his teenaged helpers in 1973. Police found seventeen bodies and a bag full of severed genitalia under the floor of a boathouse Corll rented.

Jeffrey Dahmer liked to torture and kill animals when he was a kid. After he became an adult, he did the same with seventeen men, luring them back to his apartment with promises of sex and drugs, and then killing and eating them for dinner. After dinner he engaged in mutilation and sex with corpses. After his capture, police discovered dissolving bodies in acid vats, severed heads, skulls, assorted body parts, and literal skeletons in his closet. Dahmer met a fitting end in prison, where he was beaten by another prisoner until he died with a mop handle sticking out of his eye socket.

As horrible as these tales of murder, torture, and mutilation are, the state takes a backseat to no one when it comes to mass killings. In R. J. Rummel’s work Death by Government (Transaction Publishers, 1996), his fourth book in a series on democide — government sponsored genocide and mass murder, he documents the millions of people in history who have been killed by their own governments. This is the one book that all adherents to the “we need a government to protect us” mentality ought to read.

A recent book by Andrew Goliszek, In the Name of Science: A History of Secret Programs, Medical Research, and Human Experimentation (St. Martin’s Press, 2003), presents other ways in which the state kills its citizens. Goliszek is a professor at North Carolina A & T State University who teaches biology, human physiology, and endocrinology. He is a mainstream professor who has received biomedical research grants and done research projects sponsored by the National Institutes of Health. Although the body count in Goliszek’s book is much lower than the millions of deaths documented by Rummel, the conclusion is the same — the state has blood on its hands.

The back of the dust jacket of In the Name of Science sums the book up well:

  • Documents top-secret research involving chemical and biological weapons, often tested on civilian populations.
  • Illuminates human radiation experiments, shedding new light on one of the most shocking uses of human subjects in modern history.
  • Reveals the CIA’s extensive program in mind control and behavior modification, using never-before-published testimonials by individuals involved.
  • Uncovers efforts by unscrupulous researchers and physicians to test dangerous procedures and useless drugs on human subjects in order to promote products, boost company stock prices, and secure research grants.
  • Describes the origins and sinister history of eugenics programs and offers evidence of present-day eugenics programs designed specifically to control global populations.
  • Exposes a secret agenda by which the United States and European governments might exploit international treaties to control the global pharmaceutical and health-care industry and criminalize the use of nutrition supplements.
  • Explains how rapid advances in genetic engineering and molecular biology are leading us toward the creation of ethnic weapons.

Reading in this book about the murderous exploits of the state is at once disturbing, harrowing, gruesome, disgusting, terrifying, and at times, sickening.

The book opens with the story of Nathan Schnurman, a seventeen-year-old sailor recruited to test U.S. Navy clothing in exchange for a three-day pass. What he didn’t realize until later was that he was actually testing a gas mask and clothing while being exposed to mustard gas and lewisite (a blistering agent containing arsenic). During the experiment, Schnurman became nauseous and violently ill, finally passing out in the gas chamber he was locked in. This account can be verified by reading Senate Report 103-97, a staff report prepared by the Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, and published on December 8, 1994. As Goliszek mentions in his book, the report goes on to say that “in the 1940s alone approximately sixty thousand military personnel were used as human subjects to test two chemical agents, mustard gas and lewisite. Most of the subjects were not informed of the nature of the experiments, never received medical follow-up after their participation in the research, and were threatened with imprisonment at Fort Leavenworth if they discussed the research with anyone.”

Reading about Mr. Schnurman in the first two paragraphs of the book and consulting Senate Report 103-97 should be all that is necessary to convince even the most diehard skeptic that the state is anything but benevolent.

There are some chilling conclusions reached in this Senate report:

  • For at least 50 years DOD has intentionally exposed military personnel to potentially dangerous substances, often in secret.
  • DOD has repeatedly failed to comply with required ethical standards when using human subjects in military research during war or threat of war.
  • The federal government has failed to support scientific studies that provide timely information for compensation decisions regarding military personnel who were harmed by various exposures.
  • DOD has demonstrated a pattern of misrepresenting the danger of various military exposures that continues today.

Chapter 1 of In the Name of Science continues with other accounts of both military and civilian guinea pigs and chemical weapons, including open-air tests over navy ships that involved the spraying of bacteria. Other chapters include horror stories of U.S. experiments with diseases and toxins to wipe out enemy troops, food supplies, and other vegetation (chapter 2), forced sterilizations and deliberate non-treatment of black men with syphilis (chapter 3), radiation experiments in which subjects drank or were injected with plutonium (chapter 4), CIA experiments on behavior modification with LSD, some of which included drug-addicted prostitutes being hired to pick up men and bring them back to CIA bordellos where they would be enticed into drinking LSD-laced booze — under the careful observation of CIA agents behind two-way mirrors (chapter 5), the government-industry connection that allows potentially harmful chemicals to be approved for use (chapter 6), deliberate infection of children, criminals, and mental patients with diseases to study how diseases spread (chapter 7), defective vaccines that might contribute to AIDS (chapter 8), and the harvesting and sale of human tissue and body parts (chapter 9).

Particularly gruesome are the accounts in this book of experiments on children and abortion techniques to ensure that the tissue or body parts needed from a fetus are harvested in one piece.

In the account in chapter 6 of how aspartame (NutraSweet) was finally approved by the FDA as a sweetener, we find that the current Secretary of Defense, Donald Rumsfeld, was at one time the chairman and CEO of Searle Pharmaceuticals, the maker of aspartame. It seems that after FDA approval of aspartame was withdrawn in 1980 (it had initially been approved in 1974), Searle reapplied to the FDA for approval on January 21, 1981 — the day after President Reagan was inaugurated and Rumsfeld became part of the Reagan transition team. Less than a week later, the Carter-appointed commissioner of the FDA was replaced by a DOD contract researcher. One of his first major decisions was the approval of aspartame for use in dry foods on July 18, 1981. In November of 1983 aspartame was approved for use as a sweetener in soft drinks, after which the FDA commissioner resigned and joined Searle’s outside public relations firm as a senior medical advisor. There are a number of appendixes in the book that relate to aspartame, including a 1987 letter from a Senior Science Advisor in the EPA to Senator Howard Metzenbaum which reveals the dangers of aspartame.

As the Secretary of Defense, Rumsfeld was named in a recent Amnesty International report (”USA: Human Dignity Denied: Torture and Accountability in the ‘War on Terror'”) for authorizing prisoner abuses like stress positions, sensory deprivation, hooding, stripping, isolation, the use of dogs in interrogations, and, if a “military necessary,” exposure to cold weather or water, inducing the perception of suffocation, and death threats.

Although many of the experiments on human beings that are recorded in this book were not carried out directly by the state, they were in most cases either state sponsored or state financed. It is the state that foots the bill through its grants and research projects. It is the state that controls medical research. It is the state that controls the medical profession. It is the state that controls the higher education system. It is the state that controls the approval of drugs. It is the state that doles out taxpayer dollars to industry.

It is not just the American government that is responsible for dubious and deadly medical research. The state is universally corrupt. Other countries indicted by Goliszek include Russia, Vietnam, Mexico, Malaysia, Chile, India, Bangladesh, Brazil, Japan, Great Britain, and of course, Nazi Germany.

The lesson of In the Name of Science is clear: the state should get out of the medical research business. Indeed, the state should get out of the medical industry altogether: no more regulation, no more Medicare and Medicaid, and no more government agencies like the FDA, NIH, CDC, and the NCI.

Critics of In the Name of Science say the book is too superficial, it lacks original research, it contains little analysis, and consists of unfounded accusations, unsupported facts, and scary anecdotes. I would certainly say that even though the book has an extensive bibliography, I would still fault it for not having any footnotes to document specific cases.

But even if the most vocal critics of In the Name of Science are right, even if the author misinterpreted much of the evidence, and even if 90 percent of material in the book is pure fabrication, there is still enough irrefutable evidence that the U.S. Government knowingly, willingly, and systematically endangered the lives of American citizens.

The state is the greatest murderer in history. If this book does anything, it reminds us that it is not just the state’s wars that result in the killing of innocents. So it is not just the state’s wars and foreign interventions that should be opposed, every facet of state intervention into society should be opposed as well.