Amazon AuthorCentral
  I would like all of my visitors to check out my old friend, Ken Babbs, last book. Ken and I have three things in common: both Capricorns, both USMC Veterans, with similar experiences 'there' ( I got there 5 years after Ken left), and we both appreciate The Grateful Dead.

Ken Babbs was the last member of the legendary Stanford writing class led by Wallace Stegner to publish a novel, and the wait was worth it.

Lieutenants Tom Huckelbee ("leathery as any Texican come crawling out of the sage") and Mike Cochran ("loquacious son of an Ohio gangster") make an unlikely pair of officers training to be helicopter pilots in Vietnam. Their only aim is to get through this disorienting war without losing their minds. This is a bullet-straight story, a hallucinatory journey with a fearlessly unconventional voice. Babbs brilliantly portrays theworld through the eyes of a young man discovering what it means to be beholden to another.

This novel, acclaimed as "a cross between Joseph Heller and Hunter S. Thompson" (Booklist), is a rivetingand very funny exploration of war and friendship, and a book not to be missed.


Thomas Paine, (born January 29, 1737, Thetford, Norfolk, England—died June 8, 1809, New York, New York, U.S.), English-American writer and political pamphleteer whose Common Sense pamphlet and Crisis papers were important influences on the American Revolution. Other works that contributed to his reputation as one of the greatest political reformers in history were Rights of Man, a defense of the French Revolution and of republican principles; and The Age of Reason, an exposition of the place of religion in society.


Also, an extraordinary book, by my favorite Marine of all time, Major General Smedley Butler, 'War Is A Racket'.

Smedley Darlington Butler

  • Born: West Chester, Pa., July 30, 1881
  • Educated: Haverford School
  • Married: Ethel C. Peters, of Philadelphia, June 30, 1905
  • Awarded two congressional medals of honor:
    1. capture of Vera Cruz, Mexico, 1914
    2. capture of Ft. Riviere, Haiti, 1917
  • Distinguished service medal, 1919
  • Major General - United States Marine Corps
  • Retired Oct. 1, 1931
  • On leave of absence to act as 
    director of Dept. of Safety, Philadelphia, 1932
  • Lecturer -- 1930's
  • Republican Candidate for Senate, 1932
  • Died at Naval Hospital, Philadelphia, June 21, 1940
  • For more information about Major General Butler, 
    contact the United States Marine Corps.

"War is a Racket" is marine general, Smedley Butler's classic treatise on why wars are conducted, who profits from them, and who pays the price. Few people are as qualified as General Butler to advance the argument encapsulated in his book's sensational title. When "War is a Racket" was first published in 1935, Butler was the most decorated American soldier of his time. He had lead several successful military operations in the Caribbean and in Central America, as well as in Europe during the First World War. Despite his success and his heroic status, however, Butler came away from these experiences with a deeply troubled view of both the purpose and the results of warfare.

I am in agreement, war IS a racket.

- T Heintz

All wars are planned by old men
    In council rooms apart,
Who call for greater armament
    And map the battle chart.

But where their sightless eyes stare out
    Beyond life's vanished joys,
I've noticed nearly all the dead
    Were hardly more than boys.
War seldom enters but where wealth allures.

The belief in a supernatural source of evil is not necessary; men alone are quite capable of every wickedness.
Old men in impotence can beget
New wars to kill the lusty young.
Young men can sing: old men forget
That any song was ever sung.

Who is so deaf or so blind as is he
that willfully will neither hear nor see?
When more of the people's sustenance is exacted through the form of taxation than is necessary to meet the just obligations of Government and expenses of its economical administration, such exaction becomes ruthless extortion and a violation of the fundamental principles of a free Government.