Myth of the 20th Century – Episode 62: Coup d’Clown – The Plot to Seize the White House

Social Matter
March 23, 2018

Welcome to the Myth of the 20th Century. The podcast airs on Fridays.

— Brought to you by —

Hank Oslo, Adam Smith, Hans Lander and Nick Mason


The office of the President of the United States is often described as the most powerful in the world. What many fail to realize, however, is that while the office occupies a position able to influence a multitude of powerful institutions, they are only loosely influenced, let alone controlled, by the President. As such, in a sense coups in the United States have never been seen, and shifts in leadership rarely if ever result in sharp course changes in policy. In 1934, decorated war veteran Smedley Butler alleged to a Congressional Committee that a plot had been organized by powerful Wall Street interests to recruit him to lead an army of veterans to seize control of the White House through military force and impose a fascist-style government. After several hearings, however, the committee recommended no actions be taken, and The New York Times described the story as “a gigantic hoax.” When two or more parties present conflicting versions of the same story, however, the truth is someone is lying.


– Coup d’etat, Lutwak (1968)
– Plot to Seize the White House, Archer (1973)
– Power Play, Burke (1978)
– Silent Coup, Coladny (1992)
– Naomi Klein, The Corporation (2003)
– They Killed our President, Ventura (2013)
– The CIA takeover of the Democratic Party, World Socialist Web Site (2018) –