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August 18, 2012

Bilderbergers' One World Company, Limited and Numerology

In an article one year ago, given the cumbersome title, "Titanic Battle or Insider Trading? The S&P Downgrade and the Bilderbergers: All Part of the Plan?," Ellen Brown off-handedly dropped a couple of interesting dates closely connected to what she refers to as the Bilderbergers' One World Company, Limited, a term borrowed from author, Daniel Estulin, acknowledged Bilderberger expert.

Numerology--Tool of the Illuminati?

Those dates were August 5 and September 11, which she then qualifies the importance of by adding: 
"But we don’t need to turn to numerology to find a motive for proceeding with the downgrade."
Why did she not explain that reference to "numerology," and instead backed off from citing those dates as crucial in understanding who was behind the downgrade?

This blog is reprising Ellen Brown's article in order to emphasize the importance of that numerological analysis and to alert readers about an upcoming book that will both give further credence to her story and will leave no stone unturned to explain what Ms. Brown backed away from. The book's author, S.K. Bain, states in the soon to be published book:
Work on the Pentagon mega-talisman started on September 11th, and then the structure was attacked on that very same day exactly 60 years later in an act of synergetic magickal destruction saturated with Sirian/Luciferian energies. In similar fashion, the August 5th commencement date for the Statue of Lucifer and the Twin Towers mega-talismans brought them under the spell of the Silver Star, with the towers being born on 8/5 and destroyed on 9/11 under the watchful eye (and torch) of the Illuminated One.
This book will blow your socks off. Watch for it next spring. To receive updates relating to S.K. Bain's book, The Most Dangerous Book in the World: 9/11 as Mass Ritual, go to the bottom of the page, to the framed excerpt box, and register for a free account, which enables you to receive regular news releases from the publisher about this and other TrineDay publications.

~~~~~~~~~~~~

But for the meantime, focus on what Ellen Brown had to say about the motives of those who instituted the downgrade of U.S. securities one year ago.

Titanic Battle or Insider Trading? The S&P Downgrade and the Bilderbergers: All Part of the Plan?

What just happened in the stock market?

Last week, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose or fell by at least 400 points for four straight days, a stock market first.

The worst drop was on Monday, 8-8-11, when the Dow plunged 624 points. Monday was the first day of trading after US Treasury bonds were downgraded from AAA to AA+ by Standard and Poor’s.

But the roller coaster actually began on Tuesday, 8-2-11, the day after the last-minute deal to raise the U.S. debt ceiling -- a deal that was supposed to avoid the downgrade that happened anyway five days later.  The Dow changed directions for eight consecutive trading sessions after that, another first.

The volatility was unprecedented, leaving
analysts at a loss to explain it. High frequency program trading no doubt added to the wild swings, but why the daily reversals?  Why didn’t the market head down and just keep going, as it did in September 2008? 

The plunge on 8
-8-11 was the worst since 2008 and the sixth largest stock market crash ever. According to Der Spiegel, one of the most widely read periodicals in Europe:

Many economists have been pointing out that last week's panic resembled the fear that swept financial markets after the collapse of US investment bank Lehman Brothers in September 2008. Then as now, banks stopped lending each other money. Then as now, banks' cash deposits at the central bank doubled within days.

But on Tuesday, August 9, the market gained more points from its low than it lost on Monday. Why? A tug of war seemed to be going on between two titanic forces, one bent on crashing the market, the other on propping it up.

The Dubious S&P Downgrade

Many commentators questioned the validity of the downgrade that threatened to be another Lehman Brothers. Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research, said in a statement:

The Treasury Department revealed that S&P’s decision was initially based on a $2 trillion error in accounting. However, even after this enormous error was corrected, S&P went ahead with the downgrade. This suggests that S&P had made the decision to downgrade independent of the evidence.  [Emphasis added.]

Paul Krugman,
writing in the New York Times, was also skeptical, stating:

[E]verything I’ve heard about S&P’s demands suggests that it’s talking nonsense about the US fiscal situation. The agency has suggested that the downgrade depended on the size of agreed deficit reduction over the next decade, with $4 trillion apparently the magic number. Yet US solvency depends hardly at all on what happens in the near or even medium term: an extra trillion in debt adds only a fraction of a percent of GDP to future interest costs..... In short, S&P is just making stuff up — and after the mortgage debacle, they really don’t have that right.

In an illuminating expose posted on Firedoglake on August 5, Jane Hamsher concluded:

It’s becoming more and more obvious that Standard and Poor’s has a political agenda riding on the notion that the US is at risk of default on its debt based on some arbitrary limit to the debt-to-GDP ratio. There is no sound basis for that limit, or for S&P’s insistence on at least a $4 trillion down payment on debt reduction, any more than there is for the crackpot notion that a non-crazy US can be forced to default on its debt.... It’s time the media and Congress started asking Standard and Poors what their political agenda is and whom it serves.

Who Drove the S&P Agenda?

Jason Schwarz shed light on this question in an article on Seeking Alpha titled “The Rise of Financial Terrorism”. He wrote:

[A]fter the market close on Friday August 5th, we received word that S&P CEO Deven Sharma [whose first job in early 1980's was with Bush-connected Dresser Industries] had taken control of the ratings agency and personally led the push for a U.S. downgrade. There is a lot of evidence that he has deliberately tried to trash the U.S. economy. Even after discovering that the S&P debt calculations were off by $2 trillion, Sharma made the decision to go ahead with the unethical downgrade. This is a guy who was a key contributor at the 2009 Bilderberg Summit that organized 120 of the world's richest men and women to push for an end to the dollar as the global reserve currency.

[T]hrough his writings on “competitive strategy” S&P CEO Sharma considers the United States the PROBLEM in today’s world, operating with what he implies is an unfair and reckless advantage. The brutal reality is that for "globalization" to succeed the United States must be torn asunder . . .

Also named by Schwarz as a suspect in the market manipulations was Michel Barnier, head of European Regulation.  Barnier triggered an alarming 513-point drop in the Dow on August 4, when he blocked the plan of Hans Hoogervorst, newly appointed Chairman of the International Accounting Standards Board, to save Europe by adopting a new rule called IFRS 9. The rule would have eliminated mark-to-market accounting of sovereign debt from European bank balance sheets. Schwarz writes:

We all should be experts on the dangers of mark-to-market accounting after observing the U.S. banking crisis of 2008/2009 and the Great Depression in the 1930s. Mark-to-market was repealed at 8:45 a.m on April 2, 2009, which finally put a stop to the short term liquidity crisis and at the same time ushered in a stock market recovery. Banks no longer had to raise capital as long term stability was brought back to the system. The exact same scenario would have happened in 2011 Europe under Hoogervorst's plan. Without the threat of failure by those banks who hold high amounts of euro sovereign debt, investors would be free to move on from the European crisis and the stock market could resume its fundamental course.

Schwarz notes that Barnier, like Sharma, was a confirmed attendee at past Bilderberger conferences. What, then, is the agenda of the Bilderbergers?

The One World Company

Daniel Estulin, noted expert on the Bilderbergers, describes that secretive globalist group as “a medium of bringing together financial institutions which are the world’s most powerful and most predatory financial interests.” Writing in June 2011, he said:
Daniel Estulin
Bilderberg isn’t a secret society.... It’s a meeting of people who represent a certain ideology.... Not OWG [One World Government] or NWO [New World Order] as too many people mistakenly believe. Rather, the ideology is of a ONE WORLD COMPANY LIMITED.
It seems the Bilderbergers are less interested in governing the world than in owning the world. The “world company” was a term first used at a Bilderberger meeting in Canada in 1968 by George Ball, U.S. Undersecretary of State for Economic Affairs and a managing director of banking giants Lehman Brothers and Kuhn Loeb. The world company was to be a new form of colonialism, in which global assets would be acquired by economic rather than military coercion. The company would extend across national boundaries, aggressively engaging in mergers and acquisitions until the assets of the world were subsumed under one privately-owned corporation, with nation-states subservient to a private international central banking system.  

 Estulin continues:

The idea behind each and every Bilderberg meeting is to create what they themselves call THE ARISTOCRACY OF PURPOSE between European and North American elites on the best way to manage the planet. In other words, the creation of a global network of giant cartels, more powerful than any nation on Earth, destined to control the necessities of life of the rest of humanity.
...This explains what George Ball ... said back in 1968, at a Bilderberg meeting in Canada: “Where does one find a legitimate base for the power of corporate management to make decisions that can profoundly affect the economic life of nations to whose governments they have only limited responsibility?”
That base of power was found in the private global banking system. Estulin goes on:
The problem with today’s system is that the world is run by monetary systems, not by national credit systems.... [Y]ou don’t want a monetary system to run the world. You want sovereign nation-states to have their own credit systems, which is the system of their currency.... [T]he possibility of productive, non-inflationary credit creation by the state, which is firmly stated in the US Constitution, was excluded by Maastricht [the Treaty of the European Union] as a method of determining economic and financial policy.

The world company acquires assets by preventing governments from issuing their own currencies and credit. Money is created instead by banks as loans at interest. The debts inexorably grow, since more is always owed back than was created in the original loans.  (For more on this, see here.) If currencies are not allowed to expand to meet increased costs and growth, the inevitable result is a wave of bankruptcies, foreclosures, and sales of assets at firesale prices. Sales to whom?  To the “world company.” 

Battle of the Titans

If that was the plan behind the market assaults on August 4 and August 8, however, it evidently failed.  

What turned the market around, according to Der Spiegel, was the European Central Bank, which saved the day by embarking on a program of buying Spanish and Italian bonds. Sidestepping the Maastricht Treaty, the ECB said it would engage in the equivalent of “quantitative easing,” purchasing bonds with money created with accounting entries on its books. It had done this earlier with Greek and Irish sovereign debt but had resisted doing it with Spanish and Italian bonds, which were much larger obligations. On Tuesday, August 16, the ECB announced that it was engaging in a record $32 billion bond-buying spree in an attempt to appease the markets and save the Eurozone from collapse.

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke was also expected to come through with another round of quantitative easing, but his speech on August 9 made no mention of QE3. As blogger Jesse Livermore summarized the market’s response:

... [T]he markets sold off rather rapidly as no announcement was made about  QE3.... It wasn’t until ... the last 75 min of market activity [that] the DJIA gained 639 pts to close at a day high of 11,242. That begs the question, where did that injection of capital come from? The President’s Working Group on Financial Markets? Or did the “policy tools” to promote price stability by any chance include the next round of Quantitative Easing unannounced? Was that QE3 Incognito, Ben?

Titanic Battle or Insider Trading?

That leaves the question, why the suspicious downgrade on August 5, AFTER the government had made major concessions just to avoid default, and despite the embarrassing revelation that S&P’s figures were off by $2 trillion? Suspicious bloggers have pointed out that Lehman Brothers was brought down by a massive bear raid on 9-11-08, echoing the disaster of 9-11-01; that the S&P downgrade hit the market on 8-8-11; and that the S&P fell exactly 6.66% and the Dow fell exactly 5.55% on that date.  In Illuminati lore, these are power numbers, of the sort chosen for power moves.

But we don’t need to turn to numerology to find a motive for proceeding with the downgrade. On August 12, Money.
MSN  reported that it “wasn't much of a surprise”:

Wall Street had heard a rumor early on that the downgrade was coming. News sites reported the rumor all day. Unless it was all a huge coincidence, it's likely that someone in the know leaked the information. The questions are who and whether the leak led to early insider trading.

The Daily Mail had the
story of someone placing an $850 million bet in the futures market on the prospects of a US debt downgrade:

The latest bet was made on July 21 on trades of 5,370 ten-year Treasury futures and 3,100 Treasury bond futures, reported ETF Daily News.

Now the investor’s gamble seems to have paid off after Standard and Poor’s issued a credit rating downgrade from AAA to AA+ last Friday.

Whoever it is stands to earn a 1,000 per cent return on their money, with the expectation that interest rates will be going up after the downgrade.

The Securities Exchange Commission announced on August 8 that it is investigating the downgrade. According to the Financial Times, the move is part of a preliminary examination into potential insider trading. Whatever can be said about the first two weeks of August, their market action was unprecedented, unnatural, and bears close observation.

Ellen Brown is president of the Public Banking Institute and the author of eleven books. She developed her research skills as an attorney practicing civil litigation in Los Angeles.  In Web of Debt, she turns those skills to an analysis of the Federal Reserve and “the money trust.” Her websites are http://WebofDebt.com
 and http://PublicBankingInstitute.org. Ellen Brown is a frequent contributor to Global Research.  Global Research Articles by Ellen Brown


Aftermath of August 5, 2011

As it turns out there was no interest rate increase. Instead Bernanke announced:
To promote the ongoing economic recovery and to help ensure that inflation, over time, is at levels consistent with its mandate, the Committee decided today to keep the target range for the federal funds rate at 0 to 1/4 percent.
After being criticized for the downgrade, Peter Rigby, a credit analyst at S&P, told Bloomberg in a telephone interview:
“Ratings are really just a rank ordering of our opinion of relative credit worthiness based on our criteria. It’s neither an objective nor goal or intent to determine yields or prices. Obviously, investors do that using a whole host of information and different investors have their different valuation objectives.”

August 13, 2012

California Software Geniuses during the Reagan Years

Conspiracy researchers from the 1990's may remember a few of the building blocks that went into creating what is now known as Analex. Analyzing these components is a good refresher course that shows how corporate America works hand-in-hand with the military-industrial complex and with powerful politicians who would give a helping hand to advance their own political goals and the monetary goals of those who help them get elected. All, of course, under the guise of national security.

History of Analex Corporation

Through its subsidiaries and operating units, Alexandria, Virginia-based Analex Corporation offers information technology, systems engineering, security services, and intelligence services in support of homeland security, aerospace, and defense-related projects. Aerospace services are provided to such clients as
  • NASA, 
  • the United States Air Force, 
  • Lockheed Martin Corporation, 
  • Boeing, and 
  • the National Reconnaissance Office.
These services include control dynamics, failure modes effects and critical analysis, launch integration, mission assurance, stress analysis, and systems integration. Analex's medical services provides software and system engineering services to medical product and device manufacturers. The company's commercial engineering services unit is involved in such areas as software integration, system integration, database design and development, imaging technology, engineering research and design, electromagnetic compatibility, and software development.

Wholly owned subsidiary Beta Analytics International, Inc. provides security services to both government and non-government clients, ranging from high-tech information assurance and technology protection to access control at client sites. Another subsidiary, ComGlobal Systems, Inc., primarily serves the Department of Defense, offering information technology for weapons systems and command and control systems.

Subsidiary SyCom Services develops software engineering services for use in civilian and military radar systems, signal analysis, and other communication and database systems. Analex is a public company listed on the American Stock Exchange.

5904 Richmond Highway
Alexandria, Virginia 22303 U.S.A.
Telephone: (703) 329-9400
Fax: (703) 329-8187
Web site: http://www.analex.com
Public Company
Incorporated:
1964 as Biorad, Inc.
Employees: 920
Sales: $94.4 million 2004
Stock Exchanges: AMEX
Ticker Symbol: NLX
NAIC: 541519 Other Computer Related Services

From Biorad to Hadron--1964

Filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) indicate that Analex was incorporated in New York in 1964 as Biorad, Inc. and four years later assumed the name Hadron, Inc. According to the Washington Post in a 1986 article, the company was originally involved in the manufacture of industrial laser products, then "shifted gears in the late 1970s to focus on professional services."  

Barron's offered more details in a 1988 article, maintaining that
"the outfit emerged in 1979 from the ashes of Xonics, a notorious high-tech fiasco." 
Members of top management were accused by the SEC of fraud and manipulating the company's stock price in order to use the stock to acquire other companies.

Dr. Earl Brian, 1974
"In 1979 Dominic Laiti gathered a group of former Xonic executives and bought Hadron. By 1983, the company was lauded in the press as an 'investment banker's dream.' For the child had, it appeared, inherited the parent's acquisitive streak, snapping up nine companies in just three years." While Laiti led the investor group that owned Hadron, it was Xonic's former president, Dr. Earl Winfrey Brian, who called the shots. He was politically well connected, friend to President Ronald Reagan and the head of Regan's Justice Department, Ed Meese, and, if speculations are true, he had a hand in a number of scandals, including the October Surprise of 1980 that supposedly kept the embassy hostages in Iran until Regan was inaugurated as president, the Iran-Contra affair in which a rogue operation traded arms for hostages, and the selling of sensitive crime-tracking software to the intelligence services of foreign governments, an incident in which Hadron supposedly played a bit role.

August 3, 2012

Nightmare in San Francisco

The history of the Central Intelligence Agency's role with man-made drugs is long and ugly. One of the most revolting aspects as been the manner in which so-called professionals armed with the cloak of government secrecy have dallied and dabbled with innocent people's lives, all under the lame cover of national security.What a joke it would be, had they not destroyed so many people. Now, another shooting makes us wonder whether the same thing continues unabated. Is there a hidden connection between James E. Holmes and some secret research project funded by the CIA?



Operation Midnight Climax: 
How the CIA Dosed S.F. Citizens with LSD
A Spiked Drink in 1957
It's been over 50 years, but Wayne Ritchie says he can still remember how it felt to be dosed with acid. He was drinking bourbon and soda with other federal officers at a holiday party in 1957 at the U.S. Post Office Building on Seventh and Mission streets. They were cracking jokes and swapping stories when, suddenly, the room began to spin. The red and green lights on the Christmas tree in the corner spiraled wildly. Ritchie's body temperature rose. His gaze fixed on the dizzying colors around him.

The deputy U.S. marshal excused himself and went upstairs to his office, where he sat down and drank a glass of water. He needed to compose himself. But instead he came unglued. Ritchie feared the other marshals didn't want him around anymore. Then he obsessed about the probation officers across the hall and how they didn't like him, either. Everyone was out to get him. Ritchie felt he had to escape.

He fled to his apartment and sought comfort from his live-in girlfriend. It didn't go as planned. His girlfriend was there, but an argument erupted. She told him she was growing tired of San Francisco and wanted to return to New York City. Ritchie couldn't handle the situation. Frantic, he ran away again, this time to the Vagabond Bar where he threw back more bourbon and sodas. From there, he hit a few more bars, further cranking up his buzz. As he drank his way back to Seventh and Mission, Ritchie concocted a plan that would change his life.

Victim of MK-ULTRA
Tries to Rob Bank?
Now in his mid-eighties and living in San Jose, Ritchie may be among the last of the living victims of MK-ULTRA, a Central Intelligence Agency operation that covertly tested lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) on unwitting Americans in San Francisco and New York City from 1953 to 1964.

"I remember that night very clearly, yes I do," he said in a recent interview. "I was paranoid. I got down to where I thought everyone was against me. The whole world was against me."

After the day had bled into night on Dec. 20, 1957, Ritchie returned to his office in the Post Office Building and retrieved two service revolvers from his locker. He was going rogue.

"I decided if they want to get rid of me, I'll help them. I'll just go out and get my guns from my office and hold up a bar," Ritchie recalls. "I thought, 'I can get enough money to get my girlfriend an airline ticket back to New York, and I'll turn myself in.' But I was unsuccessful."

Out of his skull on a hallucinogen and alcohol, Ritchie rolled into the Shady Grove in the Fillmore District, and ordered one final bourbon and soda. After swallowing down the final drops, he pointed his revolver at the bartender and demanded money. Before joining the marshals, Ritchie served five years in the Marines and spent a year as an Alcatraz prison guard. But the cop had suddenly become the robber.

It was over in a flash. A waitress came up behind him and asked Ritchie what he was doing. When Ritchie turned around, a patron hit him over the head and knocked him unconscious. He awoke to a pair of police officers standing over him. Ritchie says he had expected to get caught or killed.

The judge went easy on him and Ritchie avoided prison. He resigned from the Marshals Service, pleaded guilty to attempted armed robbery, paid a $500 fine, and was sentenced to five years' probation.

Ritchie's story is certainly peculiar, but not unique. Other San Franciscans were unsuspecting participants in a strange research program in which the government effectively broke the law in an effort to fight the Cold War.

George White's Personal Diary
Seymour Hersh first exposed MK-ULTRA in a New York Times article in 1974 that documented CIA illegalities, including the use of its own citizens as guinea pigs in games of war and espionage. John Marks expertly chronicled more of the operation in his 1979 book, The Search for the Manchurian Candidate.

View from 225 Chestnut
There have been other reports on the CIA's doping of civilians, but they have mostly dished about activities in New York City. Accounts of what actually occurred in San Francisco have been sparse and sporadic. But newly declassified CIA records, recent interviews, and a personal diary of an operative at Stanford Special Collections shed more light on the breadth of the San Francisco operation.

There were at least three CIA safe houses in the Bay Area where experiments went on. Chief among them was 225 Chestnut on Telegraph Hill, which operated from 1955 to 1965. The L-shaped apartment boasted sweeping waterfront views, and was just a short trip up the hill from North Beach's rowdy saloons. Inside, prostitutes paid by the government to lure clients to the apartment served up acid-laced cocktails to unsuspecting johns, while martini-swilling secret agents observed their every move from behind a two-way mirror. Recording devices were installed, some disguised as electrical outlets.
To get the guys in the mood, the walls were adorned with photographs of tortured women in bondage and provocative posters from French artist Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec. The agents grew fascinated with the kinky sex games that played out between the johns and the hookers. The two-way mirror in the bedroom gave the agents a close-up view of all the action.

George White
The main man behind the mirror was burly, balding crime-buster George H. White, a Bureau of Narcotics maverick who made headlines breaking up opium and heroin rings in Europe, the Middle East, Latin America, and the U.S. Few knew he doubled as a CIA spook for Uncle Sam. He oversaw the San Francisco program, gleefully dubbing it Operation Midnight Climax.

"[White] was a real hard head," said Ritchie, who regularly ran into him in courtrooms and law enforcement offices in downtown San Francisco. "All of his agents were pretty much afraid to do anything without his full approval. White would turn on them, physically. He was a big tough guy."

American chemist Sidney Gottlieb was the brains behind White's brawn. It was the height of McCarthyism in the early '50s, and government intelligence leaders, claiming fear of communist regimes, were using hallucinogens to induce confessions from prisoners of war held in Korea, and brainwash spies into changing allegiances. What better way to examine the effects of LSD than to dose unsuspecting citizens in New York City and San Francisco?

The mind-bending laboratory on Telegraph Hill was called "the pad" in White's leather- bound journals. White's widow donated 10 boxes of his personal effects to Foothill College in Los Altos Hills after he died of cirrhosis of the liver in 1975. Now warehoused at Stanford, the journals, letters, and photographs provide a window into the mischievous life of a secret agent during the Cold War.

1955 S.F. directory; White at 2454 Vallejo, 2 miles from safehouse
Truth Serums in the OSS
Before White joined the narcotics bureau, he worked in the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), a World War II-era intelligence agency that preceded the CIA. In a quest for truth serums, White and other OSS agents slipped concentrated tetrahydro-cannabinol acetate (THCA) into the food and cigarettes of suspected communists, conscientious objectors, and mobsters in the 1940s. The experience wasn't a prerequisite for working in MK-ULTRA, but it helped.

Dr. James Hamilton, a Stanford Medical School psychiatrist, knew White from their OSS days. He was among the small group of researchers who had clearance to the pad. Gottlieb visited, too, but Operation Midnight Climax had no regular medical supervision.

And that became problematic. The first CIA brothel that White and Gottlieb ran in New York City had already gone awry. U.S. biological warfare specialist Frank Olson either jumped or was pushed from a 10th-floor hotel window in 1953, nine days after the CIA gave him LSD. When a CIA chemist, who was sharing the hotel room with Olson, met with police, they found White's initials and the address of a Greenwich Village safe house on a piece of paper in his pocket. The New York City operation was temporarily suspended when police investigated Olson's death, and restarted later.

Dr. Sidney Gottlieb
Dr. Sidney Gottlieb in Charge
White, a native Californian and former San Francisco newspaper reporter, yearned to return home. In 1955, Gottlieb let him.  Aside from Gottlieb's scattershot visits, White, now a "CIA consultant," had free rein over the S.F. safe houses. Ritchie says that White's right-hand man, Ike Feldman, ran around dressed like "a hot-shot drug dealer." Ritchie adds: "He tried to act like Al Capone." The pad quickly became something akin to a frat house for spies. "Eight-martini lunches" were enjoyed regularly, White noted in his journal. And on some occasions he watched the dubious research unfold while sitting on a portable toilet a friend donated to him. It was his "observational post."

What went on in the pad, apparently stayed in the pad.

1955 San Francisco directory
Dr. John Erskine has lived next door [at 233 Chestnut] to the location since 1954. "I had a feeling that things went on there that were none of my business. It wasn't overt. People weren't screaming out the windows," says Erskine, standing outside the acid house.

The property is undergoing renovation. Just a few months ago, a construction crew pulled microphones, wires, and recording instruments out of the walls.

Ruth Kelley was a singer at a San Francisco club called The Black Sheep. Her unexpected trip into another dimension happened to her onstage. Young, attractive Kelley caught White's eye, though she rejected his advances. White or one of his men eventually dosed her with LSD just before she went onstage, according to a deposition of Frank Laubinger, a CIA official who led a program in the 1980s that made contact with victims of MK-ULTRA. 

"The LSD definitely took some effect during her act." Kelley reportedly went to the hospital, but was fine ... once the effects of the drug, that she didn't know she was on, wore off.

North Beach
How test subjects were chosen by the agents varied. In the case of the Telegraph Hill safe house, working girls would pick up johns in North Beach bars and restaurants, then bring them back for experimentation and observation. Other times, White and his wife would host dinner parties where guests might get dosed with a hallucinogenic cocktail without their knowledge. And seemingly random San Franciscans like Kelley were victimized for no other reason than their paths crossed with White and his men at the wrong time. White wrote in his diary how he slipped acid to unsuspecting civilians at local beaches, and in city bars and restaurants.

Fun, Fun, Fun...until
There were two other Bay Area safe houses where the CIA researched LSD and other chemicals: Room 49 of the Plantation Inn at Lombard and Webster streets [only .6 of a mile from White's home], and 261 Green [Greene?] St. in Mill Valley [north of San Francisco in Marin County], not far from Sausalito.

***


Dr. Timothy Leary
CIA operatives also admitted to experimenting with LSD themselves. In a 1970 letter to UC Berkeley psychiatry professor Harvey Powelson, White wrote how he "served as a guinea pig from time to time. [Note: Powelson also worked with Timothy Leary, who was the Director of the Kaiser Foundation Psychological Research from 1952 to 1958.] My personal observation was that the effect of all of these drugs was essentially the same, except for the degree or extent of the effect. THCA was more potent than marihuana [sic] and LSD more potent than THCA. So far as I was concerned, 'clear thinking' was non-existent while under the influence of any of these drugs. I did feel at times I was having a 'mind-expanding' experience but this vanished like a dream immediately after the session."

By all accounts, White enjoyed the undercover work he was doing. Perhaps a little too much. He would write in a 1971 letter to Gottlieb, 
"Of course I was a very minor missionary, actually a heretic, but I toiled wholeheartedly in the vineyards because it was fun, fun, fun. Where else could a red-blooded American boy lie, kill and cheat, steal, deceive, rape and pillage with the sanction and blessing of the All-Highest? Pretty Good Stuff, Brudder!"
Few inside the CIA even knew about MK-ULTRA and its sub-projects. The domestic experiments escaped scrutiny for a decade, until President John F. Kennedy, smarting from the botched Bay of Pigs invasion, forced CIA director Allen Dulles, who first signed off on MK-ULTRA, to resign. The agency's activities in San Francisco were so secret that not even the CIA's new director, John McCone, was informed of them when he took over in 1963. 
But incoming CIA Inspector General John Earman didn't sugarcoat what he learned. 
"The concepts involved in manipulating human behavior are found by many people both within and outside the Agency to be distasteful and unethical," he wrote, questioning whether the clandestine activities were even legal. "Public disclosure of some aspects of MKULTRA activity could induce serious adverse reaction in U.S. public opinion, as well as stimulate offensive and defensive action in this field on the part of foreign intelligence services."
Earman noted numerous civilians grew ill from the effects of the psychoactive drugs they were secretly slipped, and it would be embarrassing if doctors were to discover what the government had been doing. He recommended closing the safe houses. Yet high-ranking intelligence officers called for the continuance of Midnight Climax. "While I share your uneasiness and distaste for any program which tends to intrude upon an individual's private and legal prerogatives, I believe it is necessary that the Agency maintain a central role in this activity," wrote Richard Helms, then the CIA's deputy director of plans.

Testing of unwitting individuals was suspended in 1964, at least officially. Still, the CIA safe houses in San Francisco and New York City continued to operate for a year and a half longer. Scrutiny of the program intensified at CIA headquarters in Virginia, and subsequently the Bay Area safe houses shut down in 1965. New York City's operation stopped in 1966. Intelligence officers conceded that the drug-testing exposed the agency to a serious "moral problem."

Fire Marshal at Stinson Beach
The fun was over. White retired from law enforcement in 1965 and became the fire marshal at Stinson Beach [near Mill Valley]. He wrote a swashbuckling autobiography titled A Diet of Danger that crowed about his Bureau of Narcotics adventures. It conspicuously left out Operation Midnight Climax. Publishers rejected the book in 1971.

Lawmakers were incredulous when they learned of the CIA's secret plots. But specifics at the time were scant.

Helms, one of MK-ULTRA's original architects, succeeded McCone as CIA director in 1966. Before Helms and Gottlieb resigned in the early 1970s, they ordered all of the project's paperwork destroyed. A massive paper purge occurred in 1973, just as Washington found itself in the throes of the Watergate scandal. In an attempt to clean house, that same year new CIA Director James Schlesinger ordered agency employees to inform him of illegal government activities. That's when he learned of Olson's fatal plunge in New York City, and the acid tests.

It didn't take long before details leaked to Hersh. The investigative journalist's groundbreaking article in the New York Times exposed the CIA's vast illegal domestic surveillance programs. The government had been screening U.S. mail, wiretapping journalists' phones, and plotting assassinations. And, oh yeah, it had also been dosing hundreds of civilians with LSD, as well as significant military populations, in the name of defense. Americans demanded answers.

Donald Rumsfeld, then chief of staff for President Gerald Ford, and Rumsfeld's deputy, Dick Cheney, wanted Hersh prosecuted for revealing government secrets. But Ford didn't heed their advice. He appointed a committee chaired by Vice President Nelson Rockefeller to investigate the intelligence improprieties. U.S. Sen. Frank Church also headed a congressional investigation of CIA malfeasance in 1974, and Sen. Edward Kennedy held hearings on MK-ULTRA in the Subcommittee on Health and Scientific Research.

While most of the CIA's records detailing the top-secret programs were destroyed, bureaucratic bumbling spared a cache of 20,000 documents from the shredder. In 1977, Marks, author of The Search for the Manchurian Candidate, filed a Freedom of Information Act request, which provided him with many redacted versions of the surviving MK-ULTRA records.

Then, in exchange for immunity from prosecution, Gottlieb answered questions before the Senate. To gain "firsthand knowledge," he said, agents "extensively" experimented with LSD on themselves before giving it to the public.

Kennedy tried to put it in perspective. "There is a light side to it, but there is also an enormously serious side," he said. "There are perhaps any number of Americans who are walking around today on the East Coast or West Coast who were given drugs, with all the kinds of physical and psychological damage that can be caused."

CIA Grants to Universities, Etc.

CIA Director Adm. Stansfield Turner testified that 44 colleges and universities, 15 research foundations and pharmaceutical companies, 12 hospitals and clinics, and three penal institutions across the country were used for MK-ULTRA research that included LSD, painkillers, and other drugs.
Using a front organization, Gottlieb distributed millions of dollars in drug research grants to Stanford, UC Berkeley, and other institutions, which only later learned the money's source. Stanford acknowledged its faculty received close to $40,000 over eight years from the CIA's secret program. It had hosted several studies on the effects of drugs on interrogations, and also spent money developing miniature lie detectors and other spy equipment.

Lawmakers denounced the CIA's covert domestic activities, but ultimately no disciplinary action was taken. Gottlieb and the others behind the acid experiments were not prosecuted or punished. But the innocent victims of these programs had to be notified, the Senate subcommittee concluded. Tracking down victims proved difficult, since so little of that data survived the CIA's paper-shredding.

A victim's taskforce was established, but despite estimates of hundreds, maybe thousands of people exposed to the CIA's mind-control program, records show only 14 of them were notified.

Dr. Olson's family sued the government, claiming the scientist's death was not actually connected to the LSD he took. They claimed a government operative pushed him out of the window so he wouldn't divulge information about a classified CIA interrogation program concerning the use of biological weapons in the Korean War. Olson's family ultimately accepted an out-of-court settlement from the U.S. government for $750,000. There have been other lawsuits, including a class-action from alleged victims of the CIA's programs in Canada, and other reparations have been paid.

The Vietnam Veterans of America filed suit in San Francisco federal court in 2009, claiming at least 7,800 soldiers were, without their knowledge, given as many as 400 types of drugs and chemicals, including sarin, amphetamines, barbiturates, mustard gas, and LSD by the Army and CIA. Just last month, the group filed a petition in San Francisco seeking class-action status. The suit does not ask for money but instead seeks to overturn a 1950 Supreme Court decision that effectively insulates the government from liability under the Federal Torts Claims Act. The vets also want to discover the substances and doses they received, and get care for any resulting health conditions.

George White at Same Christmas Party!
In spring 1999, Ritchie opened a copy of the San Jose Mercury News and read Gottlieb's obituary. Then it hit him.
"I didn't know that name at all. I'd never heard of him," Ritchie said. "But what caught my eye were LSD and George White. George White was a supervising narcotics officer in 1957 in San Francisco and I knew him. When I read the article, it said he was working with the CIA testing mind-control drugs with the help of drug-addicted prostitutes. I put it together. He was drugging people without their knowledge. I thought, 'My God, how could he have done that to me?'"
Ritchie began his own research into the CIA's drugging activity, and grew convinced the CIA dosed him. Ritchie brought a lawsuit against the United States and its agents, claiming his attempted armed robbery at the bar was set in motion when agents slipped LSD into his drink at the Christmas party. White's journal puts him in the same place as Ritchie the day the dosing and robbery occurred. An entry in White's leather-bound book for Dec. 20, 1957, reads: "Xmas party Fed bldg Press Room."

Ritchie's complaint leaned heavily on the deposition of Feldman, the former agent under White. Feldman's testimony was at times incriminating, contradictory, and combative. "I didn't do any follow-up, period, because it wasn't a very good thing to go and say 'How do you feel today?' You don't give them a tip. You just back away and let them worry, like this nitwit, Ritchie," Feldman said in a deposition.

A district court ruled in 2005 that Ritchie failed to prove that an LSD-induced psychotic disorder triggered his failed robbery attempt. The judge called it "a troubling case and that if indeed true [Ritchie] has paid a terrible price in the name of national security." Noting that federal agents in San Francisco were doing "things that were reprehensible," the judge concluded "it was not clear by a preponderance of the evidence that Mr. Ritchie was administered LSD. It may be what happened. But we don't operate on hunches." To this day, Ritchie says he is "absolutely shocked" he lost the case.

Now house-bound and suffering from emphysema and other ailments — all of which he attributes to old age — Ritchie isn't bitter about his long, strange trip. He simply chalks it up to the government doing the best it could during difficult times.

"They thought they were helping the country," Ritchie said.