Is The Catcher in the Rye a Mechanism of Control?

by Adam Gorightly

(Note: Originally published in Paranoia Magazine 1992)

One night not long ago, while dozing off to sleep, I was stirred from hypnogogia by the radio faintly humming by my head. When I heard the name J.D. Salinger my curiosity was immediately aroused and I turned the volume up. It was a brief news item, relating the event of Salinger's home burning down in New Hampshire. The news announcer described how Salinger and his wife had watched the conflagration helplessly from a distance, as the firefighters futilely battled to save their home. Anyway, this was the last I heard of the story, which isn't surprising given the elusive nature of Salinger, dropping from view as he did in 1965 and becoming a recluse.

Curious as to what Salinger had done over the years since his disappearance from the public eye, I chanced upon the biography In Search of J. D. Salinger by Ian Hamilton. One area of interest I had was Salinger's connections with U.S. Intelligence. My reason for this line of inquiry stemmed from my suspicion that his classic novel The Catcher in the Rye had been used as a "mechanism of control" in the assassination of John Lennon, and the attempted assassination of Ronald Reagan. If you recall, The Catcher in the Rye was found in the possession of both Hinkley and Chapman after their respective rampages. In fact, when the New York City police apprehended Chapman in the aftermath of Lennon's assassination, he was sitting glassy-eyed and zombified, leaning against the Dakota Building, reading Salinger's book.

When I refer to The Catcher in the Rye as a "mechanism of control" I mean in the sense of a triggering device, which sets off a post-hypnotic suggestion, much like the queen of hearts in Richard Condon's Manchurian Candidate, unleashing within its mind-controlled subjects the command to kill. According to Hamilton's biography, Salinger was under the employ of Defense Intelligence during World War II, serving with the Counter Intelligence Corps (CIC), his time spent mainly in the interrogation of captured Nazis. Later on, toward the end of the war, Salinger was involved in the denazification of Germany.

Denazification could be construed as a code word alluding to the importation of high-level Nazi spies into the highest ranks of the American Intelligence Community under the auspices of Project Paperclip, the top secret operation -- which at the war's end -- smuggled hundreds of Nazis out of Germany. These "reformed" Nazis were then given new identities, in time forming the core of the new U.S. intelligence, defense and aerospace establishments.

According to the late conspiracy researcher Mae Brussell, it was this American/Nazi alliance that reformed the old Office of Strategic Services (OSS) into its new and improved Nazi-ised version: the Central Intelligence Agency. Perhaps, in this instance, Re-nazification would have been a more apropos term. From this point of reference, it would take a rather fanciful leap to entertain the notion that Salinger was part of this diabolical plot; and going even further to suggest that under the auspices of this new American/Nazi Intelligence regime he wrote The Catcher in the Rye as a "mechanism of control" to be employed in CIA mind-control experiments such as Project Artichoke and MK-Ultra.

Personally, I don't suspect that Salinger was wittingly contracted by U.S. Intelligence to covertly compose The Catcher in the Rye for nefarious reasons. However, I do consider it quite possible that The Catcher in the Rye has been used as a "mechanism of control." In this same fashion, the music of The Beatles was possibly used, in a similar manner, to not only program Mark David Chapman, but the evil Manson clan, as well. According to Vincent Bugliosi in his best seller Helter Skelter, the Mansonoids used bizarre interpretations of Beatles songs to guide them on their murderous rampages through the Hollywood Hills in the summer of 1969. Furthermore - according to Mae Brussell and other researchers - the Manson Family was nothing less than a full blown CIA Mind Control experiment designed to cast aspersions on the whole counterculture movement of the late '60s by showing that long hair, free love, rock music and drugs would lead the youth of America into a violent all out war against Mom, Apple Pie and the American Way.

Admittedly, these are tenuous connections, but are nonetheless areas that need to be delved into more deeply, especially when one takes into account the general progression of Nazi importees into the U.S. Intelligence Community, and the subsequent creation of mind control programs which reek of Nazi inspiration and influence. Mind programming seems over and again to rear its hideous head where major political assassinations have occurred. When these similar patterns turn up repeatedly, we are forced to ask ourselves if these are simply mere coincidence, or planned procedures executed to achieve a desired end.

So - going one speculative step further - not only can these "mechanisms of control" be employed in programming minds to kill political leaders and activists. In addition, they can also be used as a method to discredit the likes of Salinger or The Beatles by demonstrating to the world at large that such works of art (The Catcher in the Rye and The White Album) are dangerous to the minds of our country's youth, ostensibly driving them to madness and murder.