Archive for the Reading list Category

‘The Case Against Steven Avery and What Making a Murderer Gets Wrong’ by K.KRatz

Posted in Alex McGuigan, Crap Books Never To read Again, Criminal, drugs, Making A Murderer, Reviews, Revisionism, Worst Books, YPJ with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 29, 2017 by The Plough & The Stars

Kratz 4 (1 of 1)

(Editor’s Note: I’m going to ask if you are under the age of 15 that you discontinue reading this review)

I approached the dread task of reading this book with the unprejudiced objectivity that was sadly lacking in Manitowoc County’s District Attorney’s Office during King Kratz’s infamous reign.  I would stress that even though the most casual research suggests that KRatz is an internationally hated figure, due to his alleged penchant for serious ethical violations, including but not limited to perjury; fabricating evidence; crimes against the poor and vulnerable; which are compounded by an alleged myriad of many, many other despicably craven acts….I did not let my research of this alleged fiend prejudice my approach to KkKRatz’ self-proclaimed literary opus.

The foreword by internationally despised, reactionary cretin, Nancy Grace, proved an accurate signpost to the dire literary journey I was about to endure.   Sadly, any reasonable person’s thoughts after reading a quarter way through the book will be whether they can get a refund.  By midway through, a reader will begin to wonder did Hydrocodone have a guiding hand in KKRatz’ wordsmithing?  The seriously lengthy inventory of deepseated resentments towards people, places and things KKRatz spews out was impossible to ignore.  Around the the same point in reading KKRatz’s book one may experience an arcane revelation as to the true meaning of the term ‘vanity publishing.’

The only vaguely useful section of this Penny Dreadful is that it allows one to understand the psychopathy of the author.  One will instantly indentify parallels with the kind of mind that could concoct that detailed, graphic and grizly yet totally false account of T Hallbach’s demise at KKRatz’s infamously prejudicial press conference documented in the Netflix series.

By the time one has finished this highly narcissistic, polemical potboiler there will be real proof of KKRatz’s criminality, even outside Manitowoc!  Readers will find KKKRatz is not only responsible for a sordid crimewave against Literature, but also find him unanimously guilty of Larceny – by permanently depriving hapless readers of the sum of £16 ($20) they’ve just paid for his ‘book’.  On surfacing after the dive into this nadir of the lowest circuit of the literary sewer one may well immediately feel the need to take a shower.  There is absolutely nothing positive to state about the experience of reading Herr KkKRatz’s Kampf except that positively nobody should ever be foolish enough to pay money for this bound myre of bile, fiction and nonsense.  Manitowoc’s very own Solomon aka K.KKratz  @Ken723Ken has a Twitter account where he has dispensed over 500 veritable gems of Jurisprudence in under 140 charecters.  Needless to say it is not advisable to give him your cellphone number…..



However, if one has resisted the temptation to decant KKKratz’s Kampf swiftly into a neighbour’s bin, it may actually be worth keeping as a reference of sorts due to forthcoming legal developments.  Anyone in search of an objective view of  the draconian injustices piled upon Exoneree Steven Avery and young Brendan Dassey by an honest lawyer, I can personally recommend Jerry Buting’s insightful Illusion of Justice: Inside Making A Murderer And America’s Broken System

By Alex McGuigan

kratz 1


Illusion of Justice: Inside Making A Murderer and America’s Broken System by Jerry Buting

Posted in Making A Murderer, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 26, 2017 by The Plough & The Stars


Jerry Buting’s Illusion of Justice: Inside Making a Murderer and America’s Broken System should be compulsory reading for all US citizens.  It is important reading by virtue of the fact that one in ten US citizens are currently incarcerated, via that broken system, in the security-industrial complex’s ever growing Gulag Archipelago.  Jerry’s book is not simply a one-dimensional insider view of the groundbreaking Making a Murderer docu-series that made most of us angry and appalled at the blatant miscarriage of justice visited upon Steven Avery, despite the best efforts of his erudite, indomitable lawyers, Jerry Buting and Dean Strang.  However, any fan of the Netflix docus-eries will find it invaluable reading, revealing many crucial details that did not make it onto the series, not least the near pugilistic meeting in Judge Willis’ chambers with one of the real villains of the piece, District Attorney Ken Kratz.

Jerry Buting’s Illusion of Justice is in part biographical, part case studies, including those of Steve Avery and Brendan Dassey and of others who were hastily arrested, then subsequently convicted on the most dubious of evidence and the long, hard struggle to prove their innocence.  Interwoven throughout each compelling thread from the first Uppercase letter to the last Period is Jerry’s very rational, very compelling indictment of the USA’s criminal justice system:

“So many courts and officials ducked their duties and kept these men incarcerated that we are only kidding ourselves if we say that these cases prove the system fixes it’s own mistakes.  That is the illusion of justice.”

One does not need any personal experience or direct link to the criminal law system to understand Jerry’s thesis in Illusion of Justice as it is very much legalese-free, with what little legal terminology used being adequately explained by the author.  The reader may come away feeling that their misplaced faith in the equity of the Judicial component of their Government has been rocked, while others may have their own bleak experiences within the so-called justice system very much affirmed.  Every reasonable person, irrespective of jurisdiction, will have no doubt after reading Illusion of Justice that the book’s title is tragically apt and that Jerry is a proactive advocate for the rights of the wretched of the earth who by lack of means are overwhelmed and/or buried by the broken justice system.  Likewise, no-one will be in any doubt that access to anything vaguely resembling ‘justice’ is rarely available to those who are indigent or of modest means.  Illusion of Justice clearly illustrates Jerry’s passsion for the rights of the many who are marginalised and brutalised by a class-based pejorative legal system that effectively functions exclusively for those who would have great difficulty fitting through the eye of a needle.

There will be no doubt in anyone’s mind, including even the myre of Ken Kratz’s psyche, that Jerry Buting has always believed in the innocence of Steven Avery and his nephew, Brendan Dassey and has not faltered in his efforts to keep their cause in the public domain, both before and after the groundbreaking Netflix docu-series.  Jerry’s cause is not limited to just two defendants, he seeks to effect real change in a broken system and he is in it for the long run:

“…in my work as criminal defence lawyer, I still cover long distances.  Yes, some cases are sprints, or middle distances.  Yet in others, getting justice is a journey that spans decades.  Once I get started, I keep going.  It turns out that there is really no choice”

Illusion of Justice: Inside Making a Murderer and America’s Broken System by Jerome F Buting can be purchased on via this link or through and at most book shops.  Jerry is a shareholder in the Buting, Williams & Stilling, SC, law firm in Brookfield, Wisconsin and also has a Twitter account where one can get a variety of snapshots of his legal work, life and worldview.


Reporter (2007): So do you think there’s a killer out there that the police have not caught?

Jerry Buting: Absolutely, I mean, that’s been our position all Along!

 (Illusion of Justice: Inside Making A Murderer And America’s Broken system)

Alex McGuigan, Belfast

Suggested Reading For Republican Socialists

Posted in Irish Republican Socialism, Reading list with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 16, 2014 by The Plough & The Stars




By Alex McGuigan

When choosing a reading list, let’s remember we all aren’t academics, in fact few of us are, we don’t need to use ‘big words’ when a more familiar one will do.  James Connolly (although an accomplished Marxist theorist) used the this approach and if it was good enough a method for Connolly it will certainly suit us!  The process of learning should not be to spout theory and talk down to people from some academic Ivory Tower, nothing will alienate ordinary people more than that elitist approach!  The aim of learning should be to achieve what Marx and subsequent Marxists’ described as Praxis.  Praxis is the combination of theory and practice and it’s achievement is the tried and tested recipe for great socialist activists.   For instance, the author and others have been taught at University by accomplished ‘academic Marxists’ whose knowledge on the subject was second to none but  that’s exactly what it was, an academic subject.  I hope I am not being too harsh by stating that it is unlikely that they ever stood at a picket line, a protest, campaigned on working class issues or ever lifted a stone (or anything else) in defence of the working class or their community!


A famous revolutionary educationalist called Paulo Freire, rubbished accepted methods of teaching as a ‘banking method’ of education, In his famous book ‘The Pedagogy of the Oppressed’,  He basically stated that none of us are ’empty vessels’ no matter what our educational status or lack of it is, we all equally bring something to the table through our life experiences.  We all have something to contribute through our life experiences and we learn from each other through the facilitation of communal education, rather by learning by rote, like we did with, eg, our 10 times tables!


The list below of 15 titles and sources is far from exhaustive but will give anyone interested in Irish Republican Socialism a basic grounding in the ideas that have become known as ‘Republican Socialism’ whose basic premise is that the class struggle both domestically and internationally in conjunction with the struggle for national liberation are one and the same, as our goal is a 32 county Worker’s Republic, not a Gombeen state like the 26 counties with the 6 counties grafted on to it.  We are international Socialists, not narrow nationalists:

  1. Marx For Beginners by Rius
  2. Lenin For Beginners by Richard Appignansi
  3. Ireland For Beginners by Phil Evans and Eileen Pollock
  4. The Ta Power Document
  5. The Life and Times of James Connolly by C. Desmond Greaves
  6. The James Connolly Archive
  7. Ireland: Republicanism and Revolution by Alan Woods
  8. James Connolly’s Collected Works edited by Michael O’Riordan
  9. Background and General History of the IRSM
  10. Blood in my Eye by George Jackson
  11. Combat Liberalism by Mao Tse Tung
  12. Seamus Costello Archive
  13. The War of The Flea: The Classic Study of Guerrilla Warfare by Richard Taber
  14. Smashing H Block by F. Stuart Ross
  15. Guerrilla Warfare by Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara



As stated above, the reading list is far from exhaustive or indeed comprehensive but it is a starting point for those willing to learn.  It would be unrealistic to expect anyone to read these titles in quick succession, they are merely suggestions.  Again to quote Paulo Freire on the process of learning, it can be the means to not just personal liberation but liberation on a wider scale:

“Education either functions as an instrument which is used to facilitate integration of the younger generation into the logic of the present system and bring about conformity or it becomes the practice of freedom, the means by which men and women deal critically and creatively with reality and discover how to participate in the transformation of their world.”

“The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways; the point is to change it!” – Karl Marx

alex on km tomb


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