Are we still talking about the Obama administration's evil plan to put Texas under martial law by means of the Jade Helm 15 military exercise? Gail Collins writes about it today, and NPR's On the Media did a snarky segment on it last night, featuring Texas-born NPR reporter Wade Goodwyn. Goodwyn blogged about this last week on the NPR site, and he could barely contain his contempt for the believers:
Let's walk over by the fence where nobody can hear us, and I'll tell you the story.
You see, there are these Wal-Marts in West Texas that supposedly closed for six months for "renovation." That's what they want you to believe. The truth is these Wal-Marts are going to be military guerrilla-warfare staging areas and FEMA processing camps for political prisoners. The prisoners are going to be transported by train cars that have already been equipped with shackles.
Don't take my word for it. That comes directly from a Texas Ranger, who seems pretty plugged in, if you ask me.
So what exactly is that (anonymous) Texas Ranger saying about the train cars with shackles? Gooodwyn's link leads us to a post from radio broadcaster Dave Hodges of The Common Sense Show. The Ranger's letter to Hodges says in part:
Let me drop a bombshell that I have not seen you address. There are trains moving throughout Texas that have shackles inside some of the cars. I have not personally seen them, but I know personnel that have seen this. This indicates that these trains will be used to transport prisoners of some sort. I know from reading your articles that your default belief will be that these are for American political prisoners and will be transported to FEMA detention camps of some sort. We have been told by Homeland that these trains are slated for transporting captured terrorists, non-domestic. We are not sure we can trust this explanation because Homeland is keeping a lot from us and we are growing increasingly uncomfortable with their presence in Texas.
Railcars with shackles? FEMA? This is supposedly a brand-new "bombshell," but it sounds familiar to me....
Oh, yeah: it does because I wrote a post about rumors of FEMA railcars with shackles ... in 2009. And it was a well-established conspiracy theory then.
At that time, Orly Taitz, the queen of the birthers, was recounting some of her other concerns to Esquire magazine. Among the steps she urged skeptics to take:
Google an article in the San Francisco Chronicle about train cars with shackles.
She's right -- this actually was mentioned in a San Francisco Chronicle op-ed. Here it is. But while Taitz (in 2009) was claiming that Obama had FEMA railcars with shackles at the ready, the authors of the Chronicle op-ed (in 2008) were warning about this as a concern in the waning days of the Bush administration.
The authors of that op-ed were Lewis Seiler and Dan Hamburg. Hamburg is a former Democratic congressman who's since run as a Green Party candidate for governor of California. They wrote:
Beginning in 1999, the government has entered into a series of single-bid contracts with Halliburton subsidiary Kellogg, Brown and Root (KBR) to build detention camps at undisclosed locations within the United States. The government has also contracted with several companies to build thousands of railcars, some reportedly equipped with shackles, ostensibly to transport detainees.
So lefties bandied this idea about in the Bush era (though I guess it goes back to the Clinton era), and the company responsible was the evil Halliburton. Elsewhere, however, the company responsible for the sinster plot was Gunderson. A 2004 article at the conspiracy site Rense.com named Gunderson, drawing fevered conclusions about the company:
Speaking on anonymity, an employee of a manufacturer of railcars stated that Gunderson Rail Car Co. received a contract to build over 400 boxcars. These boxcars were ordered and paid for by the UN. They were white and they had shackles built into them. Shackles possibly for a brother, a sister, a mother, or you. Another company was making the boxcars as well. A company called Thrall Railcar.
Thrall Rail Car merged with Trinity Industries, Inc. in October of 2001 to form the Trinity Rail Group. For those of you who believe in David Icke's views on occult symbolism in corporate logos, I'll simply add that Trinity Industries has "3 pyramids" in their logo.
But in the Renseb article, it was an evil Bush conspiracy:
... I'll also add that on the Board of Directors of Trinity Rail Group is Craig J. Duchossois. He is a heavy contributor to the Bush-Cheney 04, Inc. re-election campaign and labeled a Pioneer. A Pioneer is someone who has contributed more than $100,000 to the re-election campaign. Craig J. Duchossois is also Chairman of the The Chamberlain Group. A group that sells access and security products for homes and businesses around the world including biometrics.
Did I mention that, according the Rense story, this was all connected to the UN?
Many researchers have cited the existence of over 107, white, UN railroad cars that have been built by independent contracters in the United States. These cars can hold dozens of prisoners and have, on numerous occasions, been shown to have 135 human shackes in each car. These would be the cars that FEMA would transfer such terrorists/dissidents to their forced labor, internment, or concentration camps. /blockquote>
The FEMA concentration camp story was too far-fetched even for Glenn Beck, who rejected the notion in 2009. But the craziness never goes away, and now, of course, Texas politicians are giving it all credence -- even though a former Texas governor used to be the would-be dictator behind it all.
Crossposted at No More Mr. Nice Blog