By Ray Pride

Filmmaker Michael Galinsky On The Shifting Fates Of His Doc, Who Took Johnny

“While many people talk about the way that the Internet has democratized things, the film world is still stuck in old-media based patterns that rely on gatekeepers to keep things flowing. The flood of well-made films that was unleashed by the increased availability of the means of production has only made this pattern more entrenched.”
Filmmaker Michael Galinsky On The Shifting Fates Of His Doc, Who Took Johnny

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2 Responses to “Filmmaker Michael Galinsky On The Shifting Fates Of His Doc, Who Took Johnny”

  1. Randy Crawford says:

    There are at least two powerful forces at work here which tend to limit the circulation of this documentary’s documentation:

    (1) People who make money in certain ways (movies, mining, warfare, charity fundraising, church groups, car sales, anything else) almost always want their mighty rivers of established personal rank and privilege to keep flowing in the same predictable channels and in the same predictable way, regardless of who gets stepped on. Why would any entrenched force want to give up a known proven sweetheart deal and take a chance on a new paradigm? Exploring the cesspool of child abduction and sexual enslavement is about as enticing as watching vultures tear apart festering week-old cadavers, which is why cinematic money can be more easily made with warm inner glow triumphal types of narratives.
    This movie however puts the tawdry nausea and suffering of the subject matter mercifully on the back burner, so that it is palatable for all ages. This movie is the first step in beginning to approach a higher goal, viz. understanding the problem. Both this specific problem of Johnny Gosch, and how it relates to the larger problem of interstate pedophile trafficking. Thus from the lessons of the past such horrific crimes can be minimized in the future. Ordinarily the topic would be too revolting to be of interest, but the cinematography and editing used here supersede the ordinary challenges of cotidian cowardice and convenient ennui. This film draws in the viewer and makes him want to learn more, especially to protect one’s own children. It is difficult to render a story line more riveting than this. That’s why those who have something to hide constitute the remaining and more sinister challenge to spreading news of the movie’s merits:

    (2) This movie as the story of one boy named Johnny Gosch deals with mostly his part of that larger problem– the established industry of child trafficking and related uncivilized evils that are lingering relics of Stone Age savagery. This powerful industry is entrenched as a secret society mafia-type racket that makes big money off the misery of its victims through the worst felonies there are, including the repeated murders of victims and any other witnesses. Thus the monied forces of the monied interests involved will naturally gravitate to the covering up of their sordid trail. Otherwise exposure of the truth would lead to the hired front-men kidnappers and the wealthy elite buyers (including politicians) who hire them to fill custom orders for human flesh. Thanks to these vested interests, those wealthy enough to hire kidnappers are always eager to spend a little more to buy, bribe, or extort silence. Or make silence certain with murder. Of course– they want to (a) not be prosecuted, and (b) not have their diseased racket be shut down. Therefore, the child (and adult) prostitution rackets predictably want “Who Took Johnny” censored away to never see the light of day. And they have ample money to spend including bribe and blackmail money toward the subtle efforts of: denial, neglect, and running risk of revelation instead into convenient ditches behind the scenes. By buying off the right people, an organized dying on the vine is as good as hired assassination. And nobody needs to know how it happened.
    “Who Took Johnny” merely begins to expose the tip of that much larger iceberg that emerges from the poorly controlled animal regions of the human mind, so for those with a nasty truth to hide it needs to be made to disappear like any other problematical witness. Animal instincts can produce vicious and cunning tactics from both four-legged and two-legged animals. By way of analogy Ingrid Bergman in “Gaslight” was contrived by a single small demon to think of herself, and appear to others, as totally nuts and not to be taken seriously. But that is merely an old tactic that fools none but the abundant simpletons amongst us– regardless of whether the tactic is used against the Ingrid Bergman character or against this movie to protect the well-financed racket it begins to unravel. For a real-world analogy from exposed fringes that couldn’t be covered up, it is already known that Barney Frank hired much younger guys for homosexual prostitution, and even allowed the ring to run out of Frank’s apartment. Politicos protect their own, especially when there is a deep secret the accomplices need to hide. The Barney Frank exposure is merely the polite to comical white-collar end of this sick slick politically-connected interstate mafia-style spectrum that sponsored the Johnny Gosch kidnapping out of its primitive Stone Age lust. With Frank however on his end of the spectrum there were no murders involved that had to be covered up with further murders of witnesses, and the victimized compromised brainwashed operatives weren’t warped so young that they were driven into lifelong self-imposed fugitive status.
    For another real-world example at the other end of the spectrum inflicted upon Johnny Gosch, in Iowa City where “Who Took Johnny” was shown earlier this week: Steve Sueppel in 2008 took a baseball ball to the skulls of his trusting sleeping “wife” and adopted children just before facing a major criminal embezzlement trial. That old cave-man clubbing instinct surfaced from the primitive depths of another poorly controlled deviant brain. The goal of Sueppel’s slaughter was so that the kids couldn’t repeat any further stories about what “daddy” had been doing to them. Right away the whole molestation-extortion-embezzlement-mass murder-suicide tragedy was conveniently covered up (as to how it happened) by the Iowa City police in cooperation with the Iowa City Press-Citizen. {{Note- they had already elaborately swept under the rug the 1996 police shooting through the heart of Eric Shaw (as to how it happened), as well as how the 1991 Lu Gang murders happened}}. Politicians, police and press with things to cooperatively hide like to show the outside of the machine but not how the innards work. “Who Took Johnny” begins to show how the West Des Moines Police, when confronted with a big and obvious problem, contrived abundant excuses to pooh-pooh its seriousness and not investigate Johnny Gosch’s kidnapping and especially therefore not expose the truth. It is more than eerie how police chief Orval Cooney is so reminiscent of Barney Frank. Similarly in the world of proffered denials, after the Sueppel murders the Iowa City the police asserted less than two days later (((and for more anesthesia re-asserted four days later on local TV again using senior policeman and self-proven liar Troy Kelsay, the incitant and perhaps actual trigger man in the Eric Shaw homicide))) that the Sueppel murder-suicide situation was pooh-pooh “all a big mystery, and we don’t think we’ll ever get to the bottom of it.” Right. Like the police in West Des Moines twisting and straining to lobby for ignorance (“tort” comes from the Latin for “twist”), the Iowa City Police knew so much [or is it so little?] less than two days after multiple skulls were cracked open that they’d somehow for sure never be able to figure out the mass murders and suicide. They knew so much or so little about what they say they didn’t know that they magically knew they could never know. And that after Steve Sueppel had spent Easter night, between killings, phoning his dad and brother’s law office voicemail with taunting blow-by-blow accounts of who he had just killed, how, and who was going to get it next. But the Sueppel family for 150 years has been instrumental in running the local Johnson County (Iowa) political scene, and has strong ties to the highest levels of Washington D.C. politics along with the Iowa City ties to Omaha, which was the source of the Johnny Gosch kidnapping. So, there was profit in keeping the masses of peasants imprisoned in pleasantly blandished ignorance by the use of pretended ignorance. In West Des Moines, in Iowa City, and in countless other towns the police have to spend less overtime effort if the vanished or murdered children are written off as unimportant runaways, or dismissed as eternal mysteries. Pooh-pooh, nothing has to be done when there is nothing to do except cash an easy paycheck. And, there is no percentage in crossing well-placed rich citizens who can get guaranteed ignorance for a fee. But to corrupt interests there is a percentage in more kids as victims when the heat is off as quickly as possible.
    The situation may be comically inept Barney Frank who accidentally was revealed, the Johnny Gosch story, the Sueppel murders, or thousands of anonymous unknown children who have disappeared into troglodytic lairs with no one to fight for them. In any of these types of primary crime occurrences, powerful high-ranking corruption in politics, government, and media can be expected to shield itself. Animals that can’t lift a finger to be civilized can be happy to go into triple overtime to satisfy their beastly lusts. Thus as the second complementary crime come the powerful parallel orchestrated denials of reality, the use of hidden or visible clout to cover up the truth, and the contrivances to protect vicious criminal tentacles along with the octopus heads who hire them. Animals from dogs to apes, and humans tribal to allegedly sub-civilized, all understand the strategic value of orchestrated concealment when revelation would reveal guilt and demand justice. When the horrors are beyond comedies, tragic crimes can be committed and yet be kept concealed from public awareness. The cover up phase depends on who has the motive to want a cover-up, along with the method plus opportunity that comes with: acquiring politico-media power and money to spend toward oblivion’s goal.
    The cancer of cover-up spreads until light is shed on its stranglehold, which “Who Took Johnny” starts to do with only two hours to tell a monumentally larger story. The challenge is all about any intended audience actively penetrating the fog of invented institutional anesthesia versus passively succumbing to its narcolepsy. That’s where “Who Took Johnny” helps shed important light. Another analogy would be Hitler’s horrendously greater crimes which the Nazis took great pains to conceal to the outside world. Those atrocities were rumored but not exposed until the concentration camps were actually directly examined. When Elie Wiesel spoke in Iowa City in 1998, he told us how an early prisoner of the Nazis escaped back to Wiesel’s boyhood village in the hills of Romania. This escapee frantically told the town all about people being machine-gunned by the hundreds into ditches in the forest, yet everyone in town thought he was a lunatic and wouldn’t believe his frantic pleas for them to run and save themselves before they were in turn devoured by the killing machine. Paul Bonacci, well-examined at the introductory level in “Who Took Johnny,” is one of the few surviving people who knows on multiple levels what has been going on as to the larger picture into which Johnny Gosch fits. He is like the escapee that little Elie Wiesel wouldn’t listen to. Bonacci is like a concentration camp inmate who has escaped AND been made to look more psychologically damaged that he actually is, as a tactic of recurring discreditation. Of course the vested interests who want to minimize and discredit this fim and discreetly veer it into a ditch have wanted to discredit any people or facts that can follow the trail of crumbs back to the racketeering Stone Age level crums who hire vicious Nazi or mafia types to grab helpless children. First the crime, then the cover-up.
    “Who Took Johnny” starts to tackle a gigantic subject in only two hours, and has been made by a small production company with only a limited budget. It necessarily can’t tell the whole story and tie all the pieces together, yet. More incriminating information, showing how criminally conniving the police were, came out after the movie was made [as Johnny’s mother Noreen revealed on WHO Radio in Des Moines several days ago]. This David versus Goliath movie is like a small match burning near a very large pile of political tinder, and the tribe of troglodytes who have a lot to hide wants to blow out the flame before any pending conflagration can explode into light, reveal the truth, and burn their nasty little butts. Their animal parts unfortunately haven’t sufficiently evolved beyond primitive Stone Age instincts but meanwhile their heads can be clever, and their tactics can be subtle, cunning, and operate in the shadows of the dark of night. Beware of the companions of jackals and hyenas who kidnap children and kidnap the truth.

  2. Randy Crawford says:

    Johnny Gosch’s mother Noreen came to Iowa City yesterday (May 2, 2015) for another showing of “Who Took Johnny,” and to answer audience questions with updated news from her more recent investigative discoveries. Anyone can tell from this movie how bad are segments of American degeneracy in the form of child molesters and torturers who have carefully crafted political connections– including via photographing politicians and police at child sex parties and later using the photographs for blackmail. Noreen’s updates show this movie is indeed only briefly and only partially revealing a mere fraction of the sordid story that is unfortunately occurring all around us. The sooner that additional follow-up movies can be made to complement “Who Took Johnny,” the better. This brand of horrendous suffering has happened to many other children, and will continue to happen to many other children while the police and FBI continue to hoodwink parents into being quiet and not disclose the news about people who are way worse than the Pied Piper of Hamelin. The same institutional cover-up deceptions will continue to tell suckers not to contact Noreen or any other knowledgeable person. Of course– they don’t want her to help ordinary citizens or victimized parents add two plus two and connect the kidnapping dots to rich and powerful politicians and political financial backers along with their “law-enforcement” puppets. The institutional “officials” are the very people who hired and protected the organized racketeering interstate kidnappings in the first place. More information on these vicious child stealing rackets who think and act like cunning cave men can be found at . This organization will be having a conference in Mt. Pleasant, Iowa on May 8-9, 2015.

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It shows how out of it I was in trying to be in it, acknowledging that I was out of it to myself, and then thinking, “Okay, how do I stop being out of it? Well, I get some legitimate illogical narrative ideas” — some novel, you know?

So I decided on three writers that I might be able to option their material and get some producer, or myself as producer, and then get some writer to do a screenplay on it, and maybe make a movie.

And so the three projects were “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep,” “Naked Lunch” and a collection of Bukowski. Which, in 1975, forget it — I mean, that was nuts. Hollywood would not touch any of that, but I was looking for something commercial, and I thought that all of these things were coming.

There would be no Blade Runner if there was no Ray Bradbury. I couldn’t find Philip K. Dick. His agent didn’t even know where he was. And so I gave up.

I was walking down the street and I ran into Bradbury — he directed a play that I was going to do as an actor, so we know each other, but he yelled “hi” — and I’d forgot who he was.

So at my girlfriend Barbara Hershey’s urging — I was with her at that moment — she said, “Talk to him! That guy really wants to talk to you,” and I said “No, fuck him,” and keep walking.

But then I did, and then I realized who it was, and I thought, “Wait, he’s in that realm, maybe he knows Philip K. Dick.” I said, “You know a guy named—” “Yeah, sure — you want his phone number?”

My friend paid my rent for a year while I wrote, because it turned out we couldn’t get a writer. My friends kept on me about, well, if you can’t get a writer, then you write.”
~ Hampton Fancher

“That was the most disappointing thing to me in how this thing was played. Is that I’m on the phone with you now, after all that’s been said, and the fundamental distinction between what James is dealing with in these other cases is not actually brought to the fore. The fundamental difference is that James Franco didn’t seek to use his position to have sex with anyone. There’s not a case of that. He wasn’t using his position or status to try to solicit a sexual favor from anyone. If he had — if that were what the accusation involved — the show would not have gone on. We would have folded up shop and we would have not completed the show. Because then it would have been the same as Harvey Weinstein, or Les Moonves, or any of these cases that are fundamental to this new paradigm. Did you not notice that? Why did you not notice that? Is that not something notable to say, journalistically? Because nobody could find the voice to say it. I’m not just being rhetorical. Why is it that you and the other critics, none of you could find the voice to say, “You know, it’s not this, it’s that”? Because — let me go on and speak further to this. If you go back to the L.A. Times piece, that’s what it lacked. That’s what they were not able to deliver. The one example in the five that involved an issue of a sexual act was between James and a woman he was dating, who he was not working with. There was no professional dynamic in any capacity.

~ David Simon