In 2010, Julian Assange and WikiLeaks disseminated mountains of classified documents revealing misdeeds and corruption in the Afghan and Iraq wars. In 2013, Edward Snowden informed Americans they were under constant, highly invasive scrutiny by the National Security Agency. The former has spent years hidden away in the Ecuadorean embassy in London. The latter is destined to live out his days in Moscow exile.
I tend to appreciate whistleblowers like Ed and Julian and find it sad that neither will be home for Christmas. It’s truly a shame that they lacked the subtlety and nuance of earlier truth-tellers such as John Frederick Coots and Haven Gillespie.
It’s a 99.9 percent certainty you’ve never heard of these guys. Cunning and ingenious beyond measure, Coots and Gillespie exposed the insidious “Santa Cabal” that, to this day, collects and catalogs every single detail of your life. The duo unveiled their earth-shattering revelations in 1934, utilizing a musical cipher so brilliant that they were never hunted, arrested, or prosecuted.
The plot divulged by Coots and Gillespie, terrifying in scale and magnitude, is something of which you are probably well aware. You just don’t realize it. They successfully sought to ingrain the reality of an abominable conspiracy within the minds of all Americans, but they may have succeeded too well. Who among you has not heard—and promptly ignored—the dire warnings they implanted in their best-selling song?
He’s making a list, Checking it twice,
Gonna find out whos naughty and nice.
Santa Claus is coming to town.
There seems to be little doubt that “Santa Claus” in this case refers to former FBI director J. Edgar Hoover. Coots and Gillespie obviously foresaw what was just over the horizon (the FBI as we know it today officially formed in 1935). Hoover ran the Federal Bureau of Investigation until his death in 1972, and terrified generations of naughty congressmen, presidents, celebrities, and political dissenters with his secret files and lists. All told, “Santa Hoover” compiled files on mo e than 432,000 unsuspecting Americans. Still in disbelief? Then, consider this:
He sees you when you’re sleeping,
He knows when you’re awake.
He knows if you’ve been bad or good,
So be good for goodness sake.
Thanks to smartphone and GPS technology (let’s not even talk about your Fitbit), the National Security Agency has these very capabilities.
It seems clear that Coots and Gillespie were prescient, able to foretell future events in a manner similar to Nostradamus, The Amazing Kreskin, and the astrology page of the National Enquirer. The “Santa” in this stanza most definitely refers to the NSA. Note the veiled warning of unimaginable consequences if “you’ve been bad.” Chilling!
Coots and Gillespie further put us on notice with the song’s opening lines, urging the utmost care when dealing with out-of-control governmental entities possessed of a paranoid need for surveillance and domination.
You better watch out, You better not cry,
You better not pout, I’m telling you why,
Santa Claus is coming to town.
Let’s be clear about something. In no way do I believe that the actual Santa Claus has any involvement or culpability in our government’s perfidious obsession with the thoughts and movements of its citizens. He wouldn’t do that. I mean, Santa is maybe the only guy on the planet we can still trust. He knows all your secrets—he’s Santa for cryin’ out loud—but he keeps them to himself. St. Nick simply seeks to determine whether you deserve a new boat, a trip to the Bahamas, or a lump of coal.
Nobody ever gets a lump of coal; that’s a clandestine slander.
But lots of people get audited.
SANTA CLAUS IS COMIN’ TO TOWN, Words by HAVEN GILLESPIE, Music by J. FRED COOTS Copyright © 1934 (Renewed) EMI FEIST CATALOG INC. and HAVEN GILLESPIE MUSIC (c/o LARRY SPIER MUSIC, LLC) Exclusive Print Rights for EMI FEIST CATALOG INC. Administered by ALFRED MUSIC. All Rights Reserved. Used By Permission of ALFRED MUSIC.