• Ghosts of Tom Joad, A Story of the #99Percent

    June 19, 2013

    Tags: ,
    Posted in: #99Percent, Democracy

    Ghosts of Tom Joad, A Story of the #99PercentIt is my pleasure to announce that my next book, Ghosts of Tom Joad, A Story of the #99Percent, will be published in Spring 2014 by Luminis Books.

    Ghosts of Tom Joad, A Story of the #99Percent is a fictional look at the New Economy, building on The Grapes of Wrath to examine the new Working Poor, and the non-working rich, to conclude we are all now the ghosts of Tom Joad.

    Ghosts of Tom Joad, A Story of the #99Percent is about growth, failure and redemption. Rich in allegory, it is funny and serious, Holden and Joe Dirt. Along the ride the story tackles bullying and suicide, first kisses and cunnilingus, and the protagonist’s struggle to overcome his father’s war that survived within him. It’s a question about how to still own something—your labor, your self-respect—you’d sold.

    The main character narrates:

    This used to be a country that talked about dreams with a straight face; it was never supposed to be the finite place we’re headed for. There were pieces of pieces of machinery from the abandoned factory left on the ground, too unimportant to sell off, too heavy to move, too bulky to bury, left scattered like clues from a lost civilization, the left droppings of our failure. Might as well been the bones of the men who worked there left. We were once the American Dream and now we just were what happened to it.

    Ghosts of Tom Joad, A Story of the #99Percent is about regime change, the death of manufacturing, the deindustrialization of America, and a way of life that was lost alongside those jobs. Wages never were higher than in 1973 and fell as poverty rose in almost equal proportion. How did we go from the booming prosperity of the 1950s and 60s to the Rust Belt of the late 1970s in the course of only two or three generations?

    A Personal Note

    For my many dear friends in State Department Diplomatic Security, I am sorry to say that the book contains nothing of official concern, and so sadly you are not going to be involved in this project. You unsuccessfully tried to sabotage my first book, We Meant Well, and now I am giving you the space to ignore me and focus on cleaning up your own house.

    For regular blog readers, Ghosts of Tom Joad, A Story of the #99Percent is the same story you may have previously known as The People on the Bus. There will be much more information to come, but trust me on this: This story will kick your ass.

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    Copyright © 2020. All rights reserved. The views expressed here are solely those of the author(s) in their private capacity.

  • Recent Comments

    • meloveconsullongtime said...


      “For my many dear friends in State Department Diplomatic Security, I am sorry to say that the book contains nothing of official concern”

      You mean there’s no porn?

      06/19/13 11:01 AM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...



      I’m writing a book about the 1 percent who will be the only ones who can afford to buy it: “The Rapes of Graft.”

      06/19/13 1:28 PM | Comment Link

    • pitchfork said...



      You mean there’s no porn?… “The Rapes of Graft.”


      you’re killen me guys. Stop..stop…….er..no,
      don’t stop. Ever. Cause that’s EXACTLY what we need to do. KILL THEM WITH TRUTH. Day after day after day..and PVB, I have no doubt your new book will play a huge roll in that endeavor. Congratulations.

      ya know, my dad’s family was the EPITOME of Grapes of Wrath. In fact, I have a picture that could have been used for the movie posters. 6 kids, no shoes, with my aunt wearing a white hand tied bandaid on her big toe, One Model T pickup, loaded to the gills. Striking out with less than $20, for a 2000 mile trip to the “land of milk and honey”. Only to discover 6 months later..there wasn’t any milk..and there wasn’t any honey. Only treacherous Corporate agri cops, itinerant camps, misery, hunger, filth and all the rest that went with it. And I’m about to repeat it..in a 1978 Dodge van..loaded to the gills….only going east instead of west. Ah yes..progress. not. Instead, we have ROT. By POLICY…you betch..fucking “POLICY”..that great euphemism for “law that isn’t law”…

      And THAT is the whole stinking point. EVERYTHING, that is happening in this country..is because of fucking POLICIES. Policy for this..policy for that. Employment “policy”. Tax “policy”. Education..”policy”. Voting “policy”. DMV “policy..
      Anything you can name..somehow comes under some kind of goddamn POLICY. But the 800lb gorilla in the room ..is..youbetcha..FORIEGN POLICY. yesireebob..the whole purpose of the Department of State..FORIEGN POLICY. That putrid, vile, euphemism for MURDER IN THE NAME OF EMPIRE. Cause THAT is EXACTLY what it is.

      And Arthur, bless his pea pickin’ heart, sums it all up in one delicious blog post of truth…


      Isn’t it odd, just two days ago, I tried to point out the REAL reason for all this “intelligence” crap. Youbetcha. Profits. Starting with BoozAllen, to the Carlyle Group..and out from there, to the Congress, and every other blood and puss sucking entity that makes a profit on raping the Ghosts of Tom Goad. My dad was one of them. Well, not for long, as I believe those “ghosts” are starting to haunt America. After all, PVB just documented it. Thank god, and PVB. Rapes of Graft indeed.

      again, Rage against the Machine hits it on the nail head..

      06/19/13 3:36 PM | Comment Link

    • pitchfork said...



      James Clapper..now head of National Security..came from BoozAllen

      Mike McConnell..Now head of BoozAllen..came from..you got it….head honcho for the NSA.

      whudda thunk. The Revolving Door of the MIC/USG is alive and well and greased by your labor care of the 16th Amendment. They got it down pat.

      06/19/13 3:57 PM | Comment Link

    • pitchfork said...


      speaking of “policys”..here is a PERFECT example..

      The ACLU just filed suit against the illegal “surveillance of the Muslim community by the New York police…using..youbetcha…POLICY.

      “Defendants “engaged in a policy and practice of targeting” Muslim Americans because of their “adherence and practice of the religion of Islam.”


      Well, here’s my..ahem ..”policy” towards every government “policy”

      06/19/13 4:13 PM | Comment Link

    • Andrei said...


      Funny thing is, USG keeps telling us Russians (via the State Department of course) that deindustrialization is a great thing and that once we achieve it we can be like America, reveling in a post-industrial economy utopia. Now why do I smell a rat here?

      06/19/13 4:15 PM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...


      Speaking of DS Booz-ing and Whoring: In fool disclosure, I worked for 30 years with the NSA, CIA and the FBI to stop several REAL terrorist attacks like the Red Brigades and Hezbollah against this great country, in contrast to the imagined ones Keith Tommy Flanagan Alexander LIED to Congress. In contrast to the NSA’s current practice, NO American communications were violated in the process. While Keith aka Tommy Flanagan trotted out 50 fictional ways to leave our privacy, it’s time for US to lookout for the American dream. The NSA’s Domestic Spying End Justifies the Means. But how to do it? Follow the Money. Of course, that is the BIG SECRET the NSA and their whores in Congress want to keep from you.

      No one disputes the need for the NSA to monitor foreign communications. When I was working with it, the NSA had to delete any reports that involved a domestic communication. Domestic? That’s the FBI’s problem. Then how the hell did the NSA morph into collecting the private life of Americans? MONEY.

      If you trust the whores in Congress to look out for interests of the 99 percent instead of theirs, then you probably believe, like they do, every lying word out of Keith – Tommy Flanagan’s mouth. These whores sold US out for MONEY. The Military-Surveillance Industrial Complex is sucking the last bits of blood out of the disappearing middle class. It is no surprise the outrageous growth in defense spending has spread to the bloated industry of overpaid private contractors spying on US.

      The real danger is what Money will buy in invading our privacy. You think insider trading by Congress is bad now? The great revolving door open to the whores in Congress who want to suck US dry is a legal mechanism for funneling billions of taxpayer dollars into their fat wallets. Contractors and politicians serve stints in government for the same reasons thieves case a bank before robbing it.

      So here’s the deal: Create a new department dedicated to spying on the NSA. For every violation of American privacy the NSA commits its budget will be cut until no contractors can be hired, no whores in Congress can lobby for the Booze hounds, and that big Utah spy center can be converted to an Amazon distribution facility.

      You think we are at war with terrorists? When we start inflicting real pain on these whores, then you will see some real fighting.

      06/19/13 4:19 PM | Comment Link

    • pitchfork said...


      Rich..great post. Kudos to you. Ok, your fools confession is amazing. Not many people would let that out, especially now, considering the revelations coming out.

      quote:”You think we are at war with terrorists? When we start inflicting real pain on these whores, then you will see some real fighting.”unquote

      Speaking of “real fighting”, I do believe the spooks are extracting revenge, if not pre-emptive sabotage on people who MAY have knowledge they do NOT want exposed. ie…….

      R.I. P. MICHAEL HASTINGS, the journalist who exposed the Afghanistan fiasco by virtue of his Rolling Stone expose on Gen.Stanley McChrystal..has been..ahem..killed. Well, from all indications..he may have been murdered.


      First reports said his vehicle hit a tree and exploded. Now, witness’s say the vehicle exploded first, blowing the engine and transmission completely out of the vehicle, and THEN struck a tree in a fireball. I hope there is some kind of public video that captured the explosion. None has come out yet, although, you KNOW who controls all those cams in public spaces.

      Who knows at this point, although, maybe the perpetrators, if it WAS murder, used a drone/missle. I wouldn’t put ANYTHING past these scumbags now. All I do know though..Greenwald better look out. Knowing he has more revelations up his sleeve..you are correct Rich..we may see…REAL fighting…by virtue of murder.

      What I REALLY wonder though, is what Hastings was working on. Time will tell.

      06/19/13 5:48 PM | Comment Link

    • pitchfork said...


      I have a question. In regards to my previous rant on “policys”, I looked up the difference between “policy” and “law”…

      “Difference between Law and Policy

      Key difference: A policy is a document that outlines what a government is going to do and what it can achieve for the society as a whole. A law, on the other hand, is a system of rules passed by the government. Laws must be obeyed by all, including private citizens, groups and companies as well as public figures, …”

      Ok, it says a “policy” is a DOCUMENT. Can anyone point me to a written document that purports to define ..FOREIGN POLICY?


      06/19/13 6:00 PM | Comment Link

    • pitchfork said...


      Priceless. On Google news, not one single entry about Hastings. But god almighty, sure nuff…

      Kim Kardashian Moving Out of Beverly Hills… to Live with Mom!

      geeeesusHfuckingcrist. whudda thunk.

      06/19/13 7:24 PM | Comment Link

    • John Poole said...


      America circa 2025: Impoverished young son to his solemn father. “Daddy, what did you do during the great Take Away?”
      He will be referring to the time starting in earnest around 2007 when the plutocracy with the help of the Federal Reserve stripped the 97% underclass of just about everything except the opportunity to be surveilled.

      06/19/13 7:49 PM | Comment Link

    • wemeantwell said...


      One of the things now going on in the Bradley Manning trial is prosecutors trying to place a dollar value on some of the leaked information so they can charge Manning with theft in addition to whatever other charges they are trying to stack. Perhaps with such a valuation we can all sell our data to the NSA outright in return for chits to turn in for cans of hobo beans.

      06/19/13 8:27 PM | Comment Link

    • kyzl orda said...


      Dear Rich, Thank you. That is exactly the problem. The scary stuff is for the public consumption, while billions of dollars go into pockets. Fear pays.

      Remember the Petraeus and Broadwell scandal and how did they communicated? Sharing an email account, both would log on separate times, write emails to each other, and ‘save as’ drafts without sending an email. And two sex-starved overpaid bureaucrats are doing that in AFGHANISTAN with their high level clearances in the middle of a war. They knew not to send emails to each other. Are terrorists just dumb?

      Often the terrorists are not using phone or skype or emails to send their plans out. Khomeini exchanged cassettes — and that was the 1960s. The CIA even had a chance to meet Khomeini back then but they thought nothing would come of him, per Dr James Bill’s book ‘The Eagle and the Lion.’

      Most of the times these days, it’s a human being calling and providing a tip *TO* the authorities; its not these fancy databases that cost the taxpayer billions and do not work the way they were so eloquently pitched during sales.

      “No, not wittingly,” was Chief Clapper’s reply during a March congressional testimony on whether the NSA knowingly collected data on Americans. and the ‘not wittingly’ reply of course was not pounded on by the Congressman who pitched the lowball question


      06/20/13 12:01 AM | Comment Link

    • kyzl orda said...


      1) Dear Peter,

      We should be suing the marketing companies and those private intel companies listed in Dr Peter Ludlow’s NY Times article cited the other day who are collecting our data for warehousing and sharing it with intel as well.


      Where is Axciom, which also holds government contracts based? Arkansas, and its history includes building databases for the Democrats. See — Republicans and Democrats CAN collaborate afterall. Axciom, per the article, has 190 Million people in its database accounting for 126 million households.

      “Until now, database marketers operated largely out of the public eye. Unlike consumer reporting agencies that sell sensitive financial information about people for credit or employment purposes, database marketers aren’t required by law to show consumers their own reports and allow them to correct errors. That may be about to change. This year, the F.T.C. published a report calling for greater transparency among data brokers and asking Congress to give consumers the right to access information these firms hold about them… ”

      “But the catalog also offers delicate information that has set off alarm bells among some privacy advocates, who worry about the potential for misuse by third parties that could take aim at vulnerable groups. Such information includes consumers’ interests — derived, the catalog says, “from actual purchases and self-reported surveys” — like “Christian families,” “Dieting/Weight Loss,” “Gaming-Casino,” “Money Seekers” and “Smoking/Tobacco.” Acxiom also sells data about an individual’s race, ethnicity and country of origin. “Our Race model,” the catalog says, “provides information on the major racial category: Caucasians, Hispanics, African-Americans, or Asians.” Competing companies sell similar data. ”

      Axciom does intel for Uncle Sam. There have been problems with their databases being hacked. Axciom also collects information on our voter registration records:


      2) Dear Pitchfork, which foreign policy do you mean? Sometimes there is official policy – for the public and then there is unofficial policy, something done off the radar to bypass the attention of the public. Some State Department political appointees will engage unofficial policies because they have a political agenda to push. The Middle East is one area that is a problem with its myriads of official and unofficial policies

      06/20/13 12:02 AM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...


      Keith “Tommy Flanagan” Alexander trotted out that dead horse scare mantra/lie – the ends of your privacy justify the means – to prevent the next 9-11. Given the NSA was blindsided by the Snowden shitstorm, excuse US for thinking the chances the NSA will prevent the next 9-11 as as good as preventing the Boston Marathon terrorist attack.

      06/20/13 2:04 AM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...



      Back on the subject of your next book, don’t hold out hope the NYT will give it a fair review. The Times only prints the shit that fits its world view. The ghost of Judy Miller still haunts that rag.


      06/20/13 2:09 AM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...


      06/20/13 2:17 AM | Comment Link

    • meloveconsullongtime said...


      PVB wrote: “Perhaps with such a valuation we can all sell our data to the NSA outright in return for chits to turn in for cans of hobo beans.”

      If the NSA start buying personal information then the Bureau of Consular Affairs can make a fortune by selling all of their soiled underwear and penis pumps.

      06/20/13 5:19 AM | Comment Link

    • pitchfork said...


      quote:”One of the things now going on in the Bradley Manning trial is prosecutors trying to place a dollar value on some of the leaked information so they can charge Manning with theft in addition to whatever other charges they are trying to stack”unquote

      Holding back another wave of nausea notwithstanding..I know. The Barnum/Baily circus of Making shit up as you Go trial continues its effort to prove to the planet that the Magna Carta was a mind fart and the Constitution never existed. This Kafka abomination redefines the word shameless.
      But here’s the scary part. As this trial continues, the USG raises it’s middle finger to the rule of law and the entire planet while redlining the ABSURD-O-METER on a daily basis, whereby the very word JUSTICE is obliterated and sent down to the bowels of the Memory Hole.
      MEANWHILE, the war on cognitive dissonance rages on a different battlefront that very few people know about, and that’s whats scary. This shit is becoming the judicial “norm” when pond scum DOJ assistant attorney generals are leading Federal Judges around via a blackmail ring in their nose. And there lies the 800lb gorilla in the courts. WHEN, Federal Judges are appointed, their credentials are meaningless. The CRITERIA by which the “appointee” is gauged..is how much dirt the FBI has on them.
      Of course, there is one other absurdity that plagues our so called ..ahem..”justice” system. Imagine this. If a Judge were assigned a case whereby the defendant was a Corporation that both the Judge AND prosecutor owned stock in and were on the board of directors. Ignoring the obvious, let’s say the Judge and prosecutor were both being paid by the defendant, and the defendant threatens the Judge and prosecutor with exposing the fact they are being paid by said corporation.

      Well then, welcome to the US Justice system reality. After all, the USG IS..
      1.) a corporation, and..
      2.) both the Judged AND prosecutors..EMPLOYER.

      and so is the FBI. Any questions? good.

      there were a few other comments that I wanted to address..unfortunately..this shit wears my RAGE button out…not to mention rotting my teeth from vomiting on an hourly basis. Which reminds me…I’ve gotta puke…again.

      06/20/13 2:24 PM | Comment Link

    • pitchfork said...


      ps..speaking of things going down the Memory Hole,
      I looked at this mornings Google news to see anything had happened on the MSM Snowden/Surveillance front. Hahahahahahahahahahaha!

      Gone. Zilch. Zero. Down the MSM weekly news cycle memory hole. Of COURSE, 3 different stories dedicated to the Kardashian..
      1.)..baby’s name.
      2.)..marriage problems
      3.)..her post birth ass size.

      fucking priceless. America..land of the fucked up and home of the lobotomized.

      bartender..leave the bottle.

      06/20/13 2:39 PM | Comment Link

    • pitchfork said...


      ya know, regardless of the Memory hole, the spiritual battle goes on between those who seek liberty and those who seek to take it from you at all costs. In that light, it behooves me to pass on a look at the BATTLEFRONT..and I DO mean battlefront, and the one, through no choice of his own, leads the defense of liberty in REAL terms. Mike Vanderboegh. May god be with him.

      ” This is spiritual warfare we are engaged in people, with the best evidence of that being the absolute, blood-thirsty evil of our collectivist enemies and their appetites for our liberty, our property and our lives. How can you look at Waco and not see the evil hand behind it? How can you consider the vicious, sustained campaign by the federal “law enforcement” bureaucracy to victimize the Reese family without hearing the Devil himself laugh in the background? These people who seek to enslave us are evil. It may be a banal evil, to use Hannah Arendt’s phrase, but IT IS EVIL bureaucratized and yet personified all at once and together. So, viewed through the lens of my own principles, I AM expendable. It is what God put me on this earth to do — fight evil with all my heart and soul until He calls me home.”unquote

      Waco indeed. Meanwhile Bradley Manning is burning
      at the stake. However,I previously mentioned “a different battlefront that very few people know about, and that’s whats scary”. Mike mentions the Reese family, and that is exactly what I was referring to, as you, thanks to non existent MSM coverage, probably don’t have a clue about their continuing trial, which for all intents and purposes, is another plumb bob of DOJ burning people at the stake, while making up shit as they go, to the point this family is being prosecuted for ONE thing.
      They’re failure to understand the depth of evilness that permeates the DOJ and federal justice system. This is the same Bradley Manning abomination at the civilian level.
      quote:”The father and son are part of a family of gun dealers jailed for allegedly knowingly selling guns to cartel members, but who were found not guilty on the most serious charges of conspiracy and had money laundering charges against them dismissed. They were convicted on a handful of lesser charges of making false statements on forms, basically under the presumption that they should have know federal agents were lying.” unquote
      yesireebob..they should have known…federal agents were LYING. right. whudda thunk. I mean..federal agents..lying? really?
      If you can withstand the nausea, here’s the background.

      And here is the latest attempt by the DOJ scumbags to circumvent justice. First, the DOJ confiscates all the Reese’s assets..and THEN..has the fucking audacity to motion for the Judge to REFUSE releasing some of these assets..TO DEFEND THEMSELF!! Welcome to the United States of Kafka.
      GHOSTS OF TOM JOAD indeed.


      06/20/13 3:42 PM | Comment Link

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