The Kingfish

The Long Shot, by Pedro Gonzalez

Socialist, fascist, populist—Huey Long defied these labels with a grin. Known as “The Kingfish” in his time, Long served as a Democratic governor and then senator for Louisiana in the early 20th century. Though the assault he waged against the industrial world and political establishment on behalf of everyday Americans came from the Left, his model offers a blueprint for the Right today. The Kingfish actually was what Donald Trump only pretended to be.

Here are two essential books attempting to clinically analyze and surgically decipher the undeniable political genius and Machiavellian amoral character of America’s great populist intriguer, Huey Long.

Huey Long, by T. Harry Williams

“Winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award, this work describes the life of one of the most extraordinary figures in American political history. Huey Long was a great natural politician who looked, and often seemed to behave, like a caricature of the red-neck Southern politico, and yet had become at the time of his assassination a serious rival to Franklin D. Roosevelt for the Presidency. In this “masterpiece of American biography” [New York Times Book Review], Huey Long stands wholly revealed, analyzed, and understood.”

Deep Politics and the Death of JFK, by Peter Dale Scott

The fascinating chapters on Huey Long and his deep alliances with organized crime (principally Frank Costello of the Luciano crime family of the NY Mafia, his brilliant financial advisor Meyer Lansky who set up New Orleans as a national clearinghouse for underworld money-laundering, Seymour Weis, who ran New Orleans for the National Crime Syndicate and was Long’s political bagman, and Weis’ political mentor Mike Moss). The Kingfish’s intricate relationship with the various New Orleans-based banana companies such as United Fruit and Standard Fruit, closely aligned with organized crime for decades, was also crucial.

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12:46 pm on May 4, 2021

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