Conspiracy in America Thomas Pynchon Way

Topics: Intelligence agency, Drug Enforcement Administration, Richard Nixon Pages: 7 (2570 words) Published: April 13, 2013
Janice Vazquez
Who knows the Government
In the novel Vineland, Thomas Pynchon, exposes corruption within government agencies misusing their power in order to benefit their own parties’ interest as seen in American citizens’ public life from the 1960s to the 1980s. Brock Vond, the FBI (Federal Bureau of Intelligence) agent and federal prosecutor who operates throughout this whole period, relies on his connections with various government agencies to set-up civilians in order to prosecute them later on. Brock Vond's fascism mirrors President Richard Nixon’s repressive term of office with manipulation of citizens, abusive police power, and over-zealous drug raids. In Political Repression in Modern America From 1870 to 1976, Robert Justin Goldstein explains Nixon’s abusing the intelligence agencies as a form of political repression triggered by dissenters. In the article, “The War on Drugs: How President Nixon Tied Addiction to Crime”, Emily Dufton describes how Nixon shifts America’s perception that withholding drugs are illegal, which enforces the creation of the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), an organization that investigates and prosecutes anybody who possesses drugs. As an authoritative figure, Vond abuses his power to justify his actions in order to get what he wants. Many citizens in the text, such as Frenesi, members of the PR3, and Zoyd, are affected by Vond’s intentions and actions. All the events in the text depict real life events as seen through every government agency’s prosecuting a character. Vond’s fascist views are seen through Frenesi’s clairvoyance at the drug store. As Frenesi looks down the brightly lit aisles, she has an instant glimpse of the future that “if human lives and deaths [are patterns], if everything about an individual could be represented in a computer record by a long string of ones and zeroes...then the only thing we’re good for, to be dead or to be living, is the only thing He sees” (90-91). He meaning Brock Vond (the God), the man with the highest position in power believes dissenting people need to be re-organized in a systematic way. Dissenting people oppose the government views, thus putting the society at risk. Everyone has to act in the same fascist ideology in the sense that government suppresses individual freedom. Vond believes people need to follow the government policies and laws as the best way to live. Everyone is insular in the sense that they should all follow his fascist views of listening and trusting the government to deal with any movements or protests. As a result, it seems that Vond’s beliefs are in opposition to the sixties that illustrate the free spirit young adults that are likely to rebel against the government. In California’s ultraconservative counties, Orange and San Diego, the rebellious students demonstrate their fight against the government constructed institution. The students attending the College of Surf (Cots) rebel against their “institution [saying it] is not of learning, but an elaborate land developers’ deal, [so they] choose to secede from California and become a nation of their own” named The People’s Republic of Rock and Roll (PR3) (209). The students realize that the Cots attracts students to their institution for profit, so they do not want to go to school for the purpose of generating profit for the developers (government). Government chooses the professors in order to make sure they teach their subject in a certain way since the students serve the future professions. Students have different aspirations in which they seek to not work for the government, but for themselves. Many students crave to create their own utopia through the development of a new nation by allowing any person to join. Everybody in PR3 knows that Weed Atman, the leader of PR3, trusts Frenesi because they sleep with each other, but nobody knows that Frenesi is in contact with Vond, and Vond essentially is using Frenesi to take down the PR3. Frenesi begins to...
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