Thursday, August 18, 2016

Roger Stone and the Gaming of Amazon

In this post, I'll present some of my research into the works of Roger Stone.

Who is Roger Stone? He is a conspiracy theorist who has written several books about how various presidents and their families have committed all sorts of evil: murder, serial rape and theft of public funds. The objects of his attacks include the Bush family, the Clintons, and Lyndon B. Johnson. In a coup, unparalleled in historical journalism, Stone pegged LBJ as John F. Kennedy's assassin. He also wrote a book aimed at redeeming the reputation of his friend, Richard Nixon.

Nixon Adviser, from Stone's website.
Roger Stone is also a top advisor to Donald J. Trump.

Stone is the moral heir of Roy Cohn, a mentor of Donald Trump. He is an ex-dirty tricks operator from the Watergate era. He has no qualms about his background. From his own website:

Stone was the youngest member of the staff in President Richard Nixon's re-election camping in 1972, the notorious CREEP - Committee for the Re-Election of the President. At CREEP Stone would fall under the tutelage of the legendary Murray Chotiner, Nixon's early campaign manager and the inventor of negative campaign advertising and tactics.

Again from his website, Stone gleefully cites quotes about his reputation.

  • "Professional lord of mischief" - Weekly Standard
  • "Skilled in the dark arts of politics" - The Atlantic
  • "Master of right-wing political hit jobs... -

Roger Stone is a columnist for Breitbart (among others). He is a principal in the lobbying firm, Black, Manafort (Trump election chairman), Stone, and Kelly. He writes a fashion column and, with his wife, is a self-confessed swinger.

Stone has appeared as a hit man again and again in Trump's presidential campaign. If you want to understand Trump's world view, look to Stone.

Roger Stone and the War on Women.

Early in 2016, Donald Trump accused Hillary Clinton of sexism, saying she attacked and helped destroy those women who accused her husband of infidelity. This is reflected in Stone's 2015 book: The Clintons' War on Women, Skyhorse Publishing.

From the introduction: "This book. . . is about the many, many ways in which the Clintons have been tied to sexual abuse, cover-ups, strong-arm tactics, drugs, lies, and the intimidation of victims."

One of the promotional quotes under "Editorial Reviews:" "This book on Hillary - really tough." —Donald Trump (Trump doesn't waste time with verbs.)

The War on Women book is co-authored with Robert Morrow.

As related in this Washington Post article: Elected as the Travis County (San Antonio, TX) chair of the Republican party, Morrow made a name for himself for photos of big-chested women and promoting conspiracy theories.

Interestingly, in terms of Donald Trump support, Morrow has gone off the reservation. The tagline under his Twitter account: "Lying, Raping Donald Trump is a violent, child-rapist and he raped, slapped & threatened a 13 year old girl in 1994 @ Jeffrey Epstein party. Man is sick & evil."

Among those to whom Roger Stone dedicated his Clinton book to was Victor Thorn. Thorn is a conspiracy theorist in his own right, having written books claiming that Jews bombed the World Trade Center and that the Holocaust never happened.

Jeb! and the Bush Crime Family: The Inside Story of an American Dynasty

When it suits Stone, he will attack Republicans, and being in Trump's camp he has gone after Jeb Bush and Ted Cruz with particular fervor. Stone's anti-Bush book came out in early 2016 when Jeb! was still battling Trump!! for the Republican nomination. It was co-authored with Saint John Hunt, son of Watergate burglar, E. Howard Hunt.

In the book we are told of generations of evil Bush family members who have a special penchant for bumping off anyone who can provide evidence of them bumping off anyone.

In researching this post, I read the (freely available) openings of these books. The prose is sluggish and the thinking muddled. It reads like a breathless blog post.

Jeb!, Stone notes, has done well for himself since he finished being governor of Florida. His yearly incomes are provided. Okay. Doing well for yourself is bad? Jeb! ". . .is a fan of higher taxes, too." The evidence is that his father rose taxes.

The book seems incapable of making a coherent argument but if you enjoy the National Enquirer and muddle-headed conspiracy books, then these are definitely two-star journalism. This segues into what I find fascinating about Roger Stone's books.

Roger Stone and Amazon Reviews.

Unless you believe LBJ was behind JFK's assassination, Roger Stone is a writer of mystery fictions. To support his typing habit, he has learned how to game the Amazon Review process.

Jeb! and the Bush Crime Family: The Inside Story of an American Dynasty

With 152 reviews, the book averages 4.4 stars out of 5.

In contrast, The Great Gatsby, averages out at 4.3 stars.

For The Bush Crime Family, 72% of reviews gave five stars, 14% gave four stars. The "Top Customer" review comes from someone using the handle, Z8 who gave it five stars. Looking through Z8's many reviews, (technology, cans of Beefaroni) I found only other book: he gave five stars to "One Small Step? The Great Moon Hoax." Finding Nemo rated three stars, noting "this movie is needlessly intense and violent." 209 individuals found his Bush book review helpful.

The second top review also gave five stars. This reviewer does review other books and notes how charming Stone is.

The third top review noted that he/she "just ordered the book" but still gave it four stars. The reviewer notes: "[George] HW [Bush] was photographed in Dallas at the Book Depository as a CIA operative during the JFK assassination and recruited several of the shooters and team members. . ." George HW Bush, Ted Cruz's father! That was a crowded place. A total of 129 found this review helpful.

The top three reviewers all posted before the book's release date. It is possible that, other than the review who just ordered, the other two had advance copies. The next three top reviewer posted the week of the publication. All five stars. In fact out of the first 15 top reviews, 14 were five stars and the one who admitted to just ordering the book gave it four stars.

The Clintons' War on Women also averaged out 4.4 stars, this time with 691 reviews. 76% of the reviews are five stars, 8% are four stars. Ten percent gave one star reviews. A conspiracy is suggested in several of the five star reviews that the one star reviews all came from Clinton headquarters on the same date. The 69 one star reviews were spread over 37 days.

From the reviews:

Who knew that Bill Clinton had gone to rehab multiple times for cocaine addiction?

Hillary is a lesbian.

The top reviewer gave it four stars. Her other reviews include a large number of books. This person, unlike those that follow, appears to be a genuine reviewer.

The review which had the most individuals cite as being helpful (the second top reviewer) was written on the date of release and gave the book five stars. The same reviewer has given five stars to each of Stone's most recent books.

A total of 75 reviews came out in the first week, 66 of which were five stars, 2 with four stars, 1 with three stars, and six with 1 star.

Roger Stone has clearly figured out how to game the review system.

In recent months, Stone was quoted in a National Enquirer article alleging Ted Cruz had five lovers. Later when asked by Joe Piscopo on his radio show whether Stone was behind the National Enquirer's article that Ted Cruz's father helped assassinate John F. Kennedy, he answered that he was not. He went on to add that he had spoken to the woman who claims to be Lee Harvey Oswald's lover and that she "confirmed that [Raphael Cruz] was in New Orleans, [and] knew he was an associate of Lee Harvey Oswald."

The National Enquirer Mindset.

The following quote sums up how Donald Trump has a Roger Stone's mindset. Trump: "I've always said, why didn't the National Enquirer get the Pulitzer Prize [for their reporting on Edwards]?"

I'll give the final words to Rob Morrow describing the Clintons' War on Women:

This book is Kryptonite to the Clintons! Use it like holy water on vampires!

Never Kill A Friend, Ransom Note Press

Never Kill A Friend is available for purchase in hard cover format and as an ebook.
The story follows Shelley Krieg, an African-American detective for the Washington DC Metro PD as she tries to undo a wrong which sent an innocent teenager to prison.

Hard cover: Amazon US
Kindle: Amazon US
Hard cover: Amazon UK
Kindle: Amazon UK
Barnes and Noble 


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