Smashing Interviews Magazine

Compelling People — Interesting Lives



October 2014



Jesse Ventura Interview: On Claims ISIS Is Infiltrating Mexican Border: “What You Have There Is Pure Unadulterated Racism"

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Image attributed to Jesse Ventura

Jesse Ventura

Former Minnesota Governor Jesse Ventura (born James George Janos) is a politician, actor, naval veteran and former professional wrestler who served as the 38th Governor of Minnesota from 1999 to 2003. He left office after one term, deciding not to run for reelection, has hosted a number of television shows and written several political books.

Ventura is currently on with Off the Grid where he offers his electrifying insight into the nation’s most pressing problems, and he is the latest addition to Carolla Digital, Adam Carolla’s podcast network in a show called We the People.

"What you have there is pure unadulterated racism, and I’ll tell you why. Most Americans believe the 9/11 conspiracy theory story that the government put out that 19 Islamic radicals armed with box cutters defeated our multi-billion dollar air defense system all while conspiring with a bearded guy in a cave in Afghanistan. Right? Well, those 19 Islamic radicals came in from Canada, didn’t they? So why did it all of a sudden become Mexico? That’s just a ploy so that we can secure the borders for all these people that believe that, and they can wall up the United States of America, and then we can be the next East Berlin, which we already are.”

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Governor, how are you today?

Jesse Ventura: I’m still vertical. That’s a good sign.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): What’s your current topic of interest?

Jesse Ventura: Well, there hasn’t been much talk in our country about the typhoon or hurricanes that hit Baja California peninsula, and they’ve been devastated. Many of the people are as devastated as we were after Katrina hit Louisiana. It’s not getting any airplay up here, and everybody seems to be “ho humming” it off because of our involvement with ISIS.

I would like to see a little bit of the attention get back to the people that live south of the border that many of us hold very dear to our hearts and for all the people that vacation down there. It’s a wonderful place, and it has been devastated. Nobody up here seems to want to do anything about it. It’s just personal to me viewing where the United States is heading right now. We seem to be more than willing to go to war, but we seem to be reluctant to be doing humanitarian things anymore.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): What would President Ventura do about ISIS?

Jesse Ventura: Well, first of all, as President Ventura, we need to go back a while, which our mainstream media doesn’t seem to be willing to do. We need to go back to that thing that happened in 2003 called the Iraq War. Do you believe for one moment there would be ISIS today if we hadn’t invaded Iraq, overthrowing its government and occupying them? Saddam Hussein was no angel. Neither was Muammar Gaddafi, but you know what you have with those guys? You have stability. Now what you have is the area completely unstable. Did we do that by design, and they’re not telling us why? I have to believe they did.

I have to believe that they wanted all this to happen or they wouldn’t have done the moves they did a decade ago. What’s wrong with our country is we have an attention span of about one year. We don’t remember anything over about a year ago, and unfortunately, that’s like, “If you don’t learn from history, you’re doomed to repeat it.” We repeat history now within a decade. We don’t even bother to do it lifetimes anymore. It’s repeated within a decade. You know, what you’re getting is Jesse Ventura today!

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Hey, we’ve spoken before, governor. I love to get Jesse Ventura!

Jesse Ventura: Alright (laughs).

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Piers Morgan is saying that Obama should “get off the damn golf course,” that the president is so complacent about protecting Americans and that he underestimated the threat of ISIS.

Jesse Ventura: I think he should ask the question, “Are we protecting the president enough?” What if that guy that got into the White House had been a suicide bomber? He could’ve killed our president. I think we should do what Jesse Ventura’s been advocating for over a decade now. We ought to take care of our own backyard first before we worry about the rest of the world.

We have enough problems here at home, and that’s a prime example. They let a guy get in all the way to the White House and be successful at it, and yet you’re going to tell us we can protect our borders. If we can’t protect the White House, we sure as hell can’t protect the borders, and we sure as hell can’t be the world’s policemen.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Are the ISIS terrorists crossing the United States border from Mexico?

Jesse Ventura: What you have there is pure unadulterated racism, and I’ll tell you why. Most Americans believe the 9/11 conspiracy theory story that the government put out that 19 Islamic radicals armed with box cutters defeated our multi-billion dollar air defense system all while conspiring with a bearded guy in a cave in Afghanistan. Right? Well, those 19 Islamic radicals came in from Canada, didn’t they? So why did it all of a sudden become Mexico? That’s just a ploy so that we can secure the borders for all these people that believe that, and they can wall up the United States of America, and then we can be the next East Berlin, which we already are.

I travel the border every year and going into Mexico, there’s no one there. Coming back into the United States, I have to wait three hours in seven lanes of traffic, and I watch the temperature go from 99 to 116 degrees while I’m waiting, all to get in to my own country. The only thing missing from Checkpoint Charlie are the army tanks, and I’m sure they’re rolling and on their way. This is a bunch of hogwash about ISIS coming in through Mexico. It’s laughable. The 9/11 guys allegedly came in through Canada. How come we’re not worried about up in Canada? Because they’re white people? Now do you follow my racism comment?

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Yes, and I knew you had experience down there on the border.

Jesse Ventura: Remember, I’m biased. I live amongst these brown-skinned people for over half the year. Imagine the courage I have, the courage to live amongst them, and I don’t even speak their language. Shouldn’t I be holding my breath every day worrying about what’s going to happen to me tomorrow? No. In fact, the people I live amongst don’t give a rat’s ass about the stock market. They could care less what the Dow Jones is doing today (laughs). You know what they care about more? They’re more worried about the weather and when good surfing will come back.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Speaking of the borders, should the government start enhanced screening and quarantines at the borders to avoid an Ebola outbreak?

Jesse Ventura: Well, certainly we should be concerned about Ebola. It’s a horrible disease. Should we be panicked? Absolutely not. When the Ebola thing first started, they said that 1,000 had died. I went to my command center, and I asked, “How many people this month died of drunk driving just in the US alone?” You know what that figure was? 10,000. Ebola took 1,000, and drunk driving only in the United States took 10,000, yet we’re panicked over Ebola?

I’m more worried about a drunk driver hitting me when I’m in the United States than I am about contracting Ebola. You have as much chance of getting Ebola as you do AIDS. They’re almost the same. I don’t anticipate getting AIDS. I’ve never worried about that. As long as I’m loyal to my wife, and she’s loyal to me, I don’t have to be worried about AIDS, do I? That’s how you should feel about Ebola unless you’re helping someone with Ebola, unless you are involved in it. There has to be the passage of bodily fluids.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): On Facebook, you recently discussed the Defense Department’s gun giveaway program and called it outrageous.

Jesse Ventura: Our police departments today … it’s the US military. We have the US military on our streets today, and thanks to John McCain and the guy from Michigan who put on the defense bill that allows the military to operate inside our own country. Nobody in mainstream media has said a word about it, I’m screaming about it, but I’m yelling down a tunnel where no one’s listening. The police department is supposed to be a reflection of society. They are not the US military. What does a police department need with vehicles that are used in war?

What I see … do you want to know what scares me? Martial law could be on the horizon. Why else would they be arming our police departments with military stuff? How about my show, Conspiracy Theory, where I got led off on the congressional floor because I exposed that FEMA had built five of these camps throughout the United States to put people in, and I wanted to know who was going in there? I got in all sorts of trouble for exposing that. I got led off on the congressional floor.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): I remember that incident from several years ago.

Jesse Ventura: Yeah. You know what you should call me now in this article? Jesse “The Prophet.” I’m no longer Jesse “The Body.” I’m no longer Jesse “The Mind.” Call me Jesse “The Prophet” now (laughs). Everything I’ve said for ten years is coming true now. Stuff that I was saying and yelling about ten years ago is now coming true.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Speaking of prophesying, I read an article citing Jim Rickards' (CIA’s Financial Threat and Asymmetric Warfare Advisor) prediction that the United States will enter the darkest economic period in history on April 6, 2015 and that it will be a $100 trillion meltdown.

Jesse Ventura: I don’t know if that’ll happen or not. I have no idea. I’ll put it to you this way. If our country doesn’t start going back to the Constitution and Bill of Rights and making those the premiere documents that our country operates under instead of avoiding them, we’re in big trouble because we’re not following the Constitution and Bill of Rights. There’s a reason our forefathers made those documents what they are. There’s a reason they’re the fabric of this great experiment.

I’ve gotten in trouble for stating that we’re the “Fascist” States of America today, but we truly are. Look at the definition of fascism. It’s when corporations take over governments, and clearly the corporations have taken over our government. Look at our elections. Our elections are completely bought and sold now by corporations. The corporations do all the ads on TV, and they’ve taken away the news media. We only get our news from about five or six sources now. A few decades ago, there were thirty or thirty-five sources. Maybe this is evolution. I’ve even said that. Maybe we are evolving to a one-world government. I don’t think I want it to happen in my lifetime. I’d like to slow it down a little bit more.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): What would be your formula to turn around the sinking economy?

Jesse Ventura: My formula would be initially to turn everything around to change the culture of this country. We have to stop being a culture of war. We’re an economy of war. We’re a culture of war. War seems to be the overriding thing that drives our nation today. I believe in the teachings of Major General Smedley Butler, the two-time Congressional Medal of Honor winner, who wrote the tremendous book, War is a Racket. It should be mandatory reading for all high school seniors, and yet it’s damn near banned.

Smedley Butler won two Congressional Medals of Honor 100 years ago, and if you read this book today, it sends chills through you because it applies today. We need to stop going to war, and stop this culture of war in our country. I did a show called, “Who’s more powerful, God or our government?” Guess who won?

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): The government?

Jesse Ventura: Absolutely. And I’ll give you the quick example. God says, “Thou shalt not kill.” There’s not an asterisk, there’s not a “see the back chapter for exceptions.” It says, “Thou shalt not kill,” yet if you kill for the government, not only are you allowed to, you’re a hero. You’re taken to the other extreme. If you kill for the government, you are a hero, yet God says, “Thou shalt not kill.”

Government is clearly more powerful. They’re allowed to kill. God doesn’t do a thing about it, and government can get away with it. You may even be a hero if you kill for government. Pretty interesting thought process, isn’t it? Think about it. You can’t kill for any other reason, but you can kill for government, and in fact, it makes you a hero if you do.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): The first movie trailer for Clint Eastwood’s American Sniper starring Bradley Cooper (as Chris Kyle and based on his autobiography) was released recently. You sued for defamation and won against the estate of the late Navy SEAL Chris Kyle for including an inflammatory anecdote in his book of the same name. Do you wish to discuss the case?

Jesse Ventura: I’ll talk. Let me just state this. Many people in mainstream media have commented on that trial, and they know nothing about it. You want to know how come I know they know nothing about it?

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Because they weren’t there?

Jesse Ventura: None of them were there. I was there, and none of them were, so they have no idea what evidence went in. They haven’t got a clue. All these people on FOX news with these big opinions are all full of crap because none of them were there. None of them know any of the evidence. Having said that, I was on the stand when the opposing attorney said to me, “Mr. Ventura.” He wouldn’t even call me “Governor.” I really enjoyed that. They didn’t even give me my proper title during the whole trial.

That aside, he asked, “Would it surprise you to know that you’re not in the movie at all?” I guess he expected me to react in some other say, but I looked at him, and I said, “No. It doesn’t surprise me a bit because we’ve sent two letters to Warner Bros. warning them that if that chapter’s in the movie, they will be sued next.” I said, “I’ve worked for movie companies, and they don’t like to get into lawsuits. I better not be in that movie, and the chapter better be removed from the movie because it’s fraudulent and never occurred.” I’m under the assumption that will not be in the movie because if it is, then I’ve got another big lawsuit to go through.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Is the verdict under appeal?

Jesse Ventura: It’s over. Oh, they’ve appealed it, which is, of course, standard operating procedure. That’s how the attorneys on the losing side make more money because it’s being paid for by an insurance company. That’s another thing the public wasn’t made aware of. The Kyle family paid nothing. It was me against a major insurance company, and it’s still me against a major insurance company. They’re not even part of it.

I’m fighting a major insurance company, and so you’d think I’d get sympathy in that aspect of it. The major insurance company is the one that wants to hide the truth, and they’re the ones that want to cover up the truth and allow people to profit from a lie. I’ll give it to you this way. Here’s the final thing I’ll say in it. During the mandatory settlement conference, they immediately started unequivocally saying, “We will not admit to any fabrication. It’s off the table. The only thing we will talk about is money.” They offered me money. I refused because I said, “This is about restoring my name. I’m not in this for money. I’m in it for the truth.”

That’s why it went to trial because I couldn’t be bought off. I could’ve taken the money. They offered me a settlement. I could’ve taken the money and disappeared, but I refused because I wanted my name cleared because what Kyle wrote about me did not happen. I can’t talk about the rest of the book because I don’t know anything about the rest of it. All I can unequivocally state is the chapter he wrote about me was completely fabricated, and we proved it in court. It went to court. I won. End of story.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Governor, have you decided yet whether you will run for president or vice-president in 2016?

Jesse Ventura: No. I haven’t decided. I spoke to Roger Stone, the guy who used to be the big republican operative. He’s with the libertarians now. I had him on my show, and he told me, “You can go with the libertarians if you go to the convention. I guarantee you they’ll give you the nomination and put you on the ballot in probably every state.” So it’s out there for me, but my problem is that I would then have to be part of a party. If I were to run for president, I believe the way I would win is that I would need to be part of no party.

I would offer the people of the United States the opportunity to elect their first president since George Washington who does not belong to a political party. I would challenge the American people to make history with me and elect the second one. I really believe I could win on that today unless the lemmings are too far gone. The lemmings may be too far gone now. You’ve got a Congress with an 8% approval rating, and yet they’re all going to get reelected? That’s astounding to me. What’s happened to Americans and independent thinking? It’s all down the drain. Nobody in this country thinks for themselves anymore.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Voter turnout in 2012 was lower than in 2008 and 2004. Maybe the people are discouraged with both parties?

Jesse Ventura: Well, the parties would like that because always remember, the smaller the voter turnout, the easier it is to control by the democrats and republicans. I’m the prime example of that. In Minnesota, the year I ran in 1998, it was not a presidential. Not as many people vote in a non-presidential. It was an off year, and that’s when Minnesota has its governor’s race. They predicted 50% my year. I was polling 27% when they predicted that. Well, 60% voted, and I got 37%. That additional 10% that they did not expect at the polls showed up, and it pushed me over the top. I was the party independent winner, not a democrat or republican.

Rest assured the two parties want to keep the voting turnout low especially the republicans. Small voter turnouts are easier to control. In large voter turnouts, all of a sudden, you’ve got Jesse Ventura elected because it gets out of control. They can’t control that other 50% when those people show up. If I ran for president, I would be the one to control that 50% that they have no control over. Remember, in a three party race, you only need 38% to win.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Is race the reason why there appears to be so much disrespect and hatred for the current president?

Jesse Ventura: It’s gotta be. He’s black! There’s no other reason. Racism is alive and well in this country. Rest assured. It’s just swept under the rug more today. It’s not as blatant or wide open, but it’s there. You see it all the time. That’s the reason. Let me give you the funniest version of it. Why does the history of this country start in 1492 when the Anglo-Saxons arrived from Europe?

In all of our school books, everything we teach to children of our nation, our country started in 1492 when the Anglo-Saxons arrived. I’ll piggyback that onto a second thing for you. We’ll do a double duty here. That shows the racism because there were people already living here. How come we don’t teach our kids about the people who were already here when the white people arrived? Let’s go to that arrival. What was Columbus’ actual mission? He was looking for another way to India to avoid the Middle East. Columbus was willing to defy Science …

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Because Science said the world was flat.

Jesse Ventura: And you’d fall off. Columbus was willing to fall off the earth rather than go through the Middle East. This was over 600 years ago. Why are we still in the Middle East? Columbus was willing to defy death to get to India. Why do you think he named the Native Americans Indians? He thought he arrived in India. Follow me. If he was willing to defy death to stay out of the Middle East, why do we want to be there today? Why don’t we learn from Columbus? He wouldn’t go through there hundreds of years ago. He’d rather have fallen off the earth.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Which brings us to your first order of business as president …

Jesse Ventura: We would do a full withdrawal from the Middle East. I would close Guantanamo and give it back to Cuba. Why do we have a base in Cuba? We have an embargo against Cuba. Why do we have a base there? I’d close the base and give it back to Fidel.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Any final thoughts, Governor?

Jesse Ventura: I love doing Off The Grid. It airs every Tuesday through Friday at 3:00 p.m. eastern on, and now I do We The People podcast on Carolla Digital and It airs every Thursday on iTunes and PodcastOne. Here I am in the total Internet world, and I’m a job creator because I can’t even turn on the Internet or do anything with it, so they have to hire people to do that. That’s called being a job creator. I happily do that.

I’d like to finish with this. People think that I’m somehow anti-United States. Not at all. I love my country. I just dislike my government. If you need an explanation, go talk to the German people who were alive in the 1930s. They loved their country, but their disliked their government. That’s how I feel.

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