Dark Victory: Ronald Reagan, MCA, and the Mob(Forbidden Bookshelf/2017(1986)/ Dan E. Moldea/EPUB
Founded in 1924, the Music Corporation of America got its start booking acts into speakeasies run by such notorious Chicago mobsters as Al Capone.
How then, in only a few decades, did MCA become the driving force behind music publishing, radio, recording artists, Hollywood, and the burgeoning television industry? Enter Ronald Reagan.
By the late 1950s, Reagan was a passé movie actor. As president of the Screen Actors Guild, he was also MCA’s key client. With Reagan’s help, MCA would become the most powerful entertainment conglomerate in the world. And with MCA’s help, Reagan would secure a fortune (resulting in a federal grand jury hearing), be marketed to the public as a viable politician, and ascend to the presidency of the United States.
But according to reporter Dan E. Moldea, there had always been another catalyst behind MCA: Ties to organized crime that reached back to the company’s inception—and through Reagan’s Teamster-backed candidacy—had never been severed.
For over half a century, America's vast literary culture has been disparately policed, and imperceptibly contained, by state and corporate entities well-placed and perfectly equipped to wipe out wayward writings.
As America does not ban books, other means—less evident, and so less controversial—have been deployed to vaporize them. The purpose of Forbidden Bookshelf is to bring such vanished books to life. These works pull some of the most troubling trends and episodes in US history from the shadows, shed light on how America got to its present moment, and show us how we all might change direction.