Interview With a Reporter

In July, 2019, Matthew D. Hutcheson was interviewed multiple times over a period of several weeks by a reporter for the online magazine, “The American Reporter.”(1) The interview resulted in the article, “What Ever Happened to Matt Hutcheson.”(2)

Some have stated in passing, “I would have loved to be a fly on the wall during that interview.”

You do not have to be a fly on the wall. 

Here are excerpts of questions and answers from that interview, as memorialized and reassembled, by the intermediators and facilitators who requested the interview with Matthew D. Hutcheson:

*****

“Mr. Hutcheson, in 2011, your life’s work was intentionally derailed by political operatives.”

“True.”

“Those political operatives told you that if you did not stop advancing your unique health care access solution, they would have you indicted, if necessary, to stop you.”

“Also true.”

“Those same operatives told you that they would create and promote a false story about you if you did not yield? They also extorted money from you with the promise they would stop bearing down on you?”

“Yes.”

“That actually happened?”

“It did.”

“You paid the extortion? You believed the entire matter would go away?”

“Yes.”

“Did you keep proof?”

“Yes. I kept the deposit receipt, took photos of it, and sent copies to my United States Senator and to a reporter.”

“Your professional colleagues believed the fabricated story against you completely?”

“They did. They still do.”

“Even your family believed it?”

“By my family, if you mean those outside of my nuclear family, then yes. My wife and children knew what kind of mischief those operatives were up to dating back to 2009. They lived it with me in real time.”

“I see. So your immediate family always knew you were being intentionally framed and sabotaged?”

“They did.”

“Does extended family now understand the truth?”

“I don’t know. It really does not matter what they or anyone else believe.”

“But doesn’t that bother you? I mean, your entire life was destroyed and taken away from you.”

“I guess I am like Marcus Aurelius. ‘Choose not to be harmed, and you won’t feel harmed. Don’t feel harmed, and you haven’t been.'”

“So you don’t think you have been harmed?”

“Those people tried to harm me. But I chose not to be harmed, so as far as I am concerned, I haven’t been.”

“How can you say that? You are in federal prison.”

“I do not need pity. My life is validated. My identity is sure.”

“All right.”

“Problems are always perceived, anyway.”

“Some have called you a ‘Great Living Stoic.'(3) Why would they call you that?”

“You would need to ask them. I do not want to place thoughts in their minds or words in their mouths. However, I will endorse the words of Henry David Thoreau. ‘To be a philosopher is not merely to have subtle thoughts, nor even to found a school of thought. It is to solve some of the problems of life, not only theoretically, but practically.'”

“Do you believe that your ‘Save America’ health care access solution rises to such a solution?”

“I do.”

“And you were willing to go to prison to protect it?”

“Well, I do not think anyone willingly goes to prison. Those people intended to send me there, so I had no choice but to protect Save America.”

“Yes, but you could have prevented prison if you would have just abandoned Save America when they asked you to.”

“Perhaps. Perhaps not. They wanted me in prison, period. Knowing what was happening, I at least had power to prevent one of two tragedies; the first, prison and the second, the destruction of Save America. I at least succeeded in protecting Save America.”

“You say your favorite philosopher is Seneca. Why?”

“His words resonate with me. There is something brilliantly simple and truthful about his thoughts. Seneca is my favorite, that is true.”

“Will you share one of your favorite Seneca thoughts?”

“Sure. Seneca said, ‘No one could endure adversity if, while it continued, it kept the same violence that its first blows had…no state is so bitter that a calm mind cannot find some consolation…It is possible to soften what is hard…and burdens will press less heavily upon those who bear them skillfully.'”

“What does that mean?”

“The degree of shock to the system a tragedy inflicts diminishes in increments day after day. Those who understand this natural law (diminishing shock of tragedy), will be able to skillfully endure, plan, put into context, reframe, etc. Everyday things get better until they shine bright and can be worn as a medal on your lapel.”

“Interesting point of view.”

“It is a constructive one.”

“Why did you remain in the political vortex when you knew what was happening? That seems like acting against your own self-interest.”

“Aristotle said, ‘Man is by nature a political animal.’ It is my destiny.”

“You do not actually think you can make a difference, do you?”

“Perhaps not. But those who are willing to try, should. The great Chinese philosopher, Mencius, also one of my favorites, said, ‘Let men decide firmly what they will not do; then they will be free vigorously to do what they ought to do.'”

“I don’t follow.”

“Most politicians have not resolved what they ‘will not do.’ Instead, they will do anything that is expedient to them personally. We need leaders to first decide what they will not do and stick to it. Only then can we trust them to do what they ought to do.”

“Well said. Do you think that politics and spirituality are connected?”

“Inextricably.”

“How so?”

“As John Oxenham said, ‘To every man there openeth, a HIGH way, and a LOW, and every man decideth the way his soul [and vote] shall go.'”

“That is deep.”

“No, just truth. Unfortunately, ‘Truth uttered before its time is always dangerous,’ says Mencius.”

“Do you think politicians can solve society’s problems?”

“Forgive me for quoting Mencius again, but ‘Never has a man who has bent himself been able to make others straight.'”

“Okay, let’s change the subject.”

“Okay.”

“What should the world’s leaders do to help our children?”

“The most important duty is to protect them from predators. I have been in multiple prisons with thousands of such predators. The thought of what they did to children makes me cringe in horror.”

“Pedophilia is a global crisis.”

“It is a tragedy and crisis of unquantifiable proportions.”

“What else?”

“Parents should stop telling children, ‘It’s all in your imagination!’ Of course it is! That is where life happens for children. That is how Einstein discovered relativity. Imagination is how medicine and science progress. We should not be throwing a cold wet blanket on imagination, but encouraging it.”

“You have said, ‘They made beautiful music…one, a melody; the other, a harmony. Together, it was always a unified chorus.’ To whom did you refer?”

“Well, I am writing a book about the life of Rod Blagojevich. He lives down the hall from me now at the Englewood federal prison camp.”

“Do you like Rod?”

“I do.”

“Do you consider him a friend?”

“I do. I think he has been treated terribly. Back to your question, though, that quote is from the working draft of the book I am writing about Rod. When it is finished, you will have to read it to understand the context. It is also about my own marriage, first and foremost.”

“Do you believe Rod will be released from prison before serving his entire sentence?”

“I do.”

“How can you be so sure?”

“Put it to you this way, Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe said, ‘Concerning all acts of initiative and creation, there is one elementary truth – that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then providence moves, too.'”

“What does that have to do with Rod?”

“You will see.”

“All right. That’s it?”

“For now.”

“Okay.”

“You are quoted in saying that ‘Virtue is excellence of character.'”

“Correct.”

“Where does that thought come from?”

“The Founding Fathers called ‘Virtue,’ ‘Excellence.’ Truth, trust, and excellence are inextricably connected. Truth is virtue. Trust is virtue; both excellent. Therefore, virtue must be excellence.”

“Fascinating.”

“Excellence is derived from two Latin words. ‘Ex’ means ‘out from’; and ‘Cellere’ from ‘rising.’ Together, ‘excellence’ means ‘rising out from something ordinary.'”

“Does ‘excellence,’ as you define it, actually have that meaning?”

“We only ask if something has meaning if it actually does, even though we may not understand at a deeper level. Things that do not have meaning never rise to the question.”

“Do you believe in life after death?”

“Of course.”

“How can you be so sure there is life after death?”

“Do you agree you are here now? Is it possible you will be ‘there’ in the future? Is it possible you were ‘elsewhere’ before here, as here was before there?”

“You totally lost me. That is too deep for this reporter.”

“Take time to ponder it.”  

“I guess what I am asking, is how can you believe in something you can’t prove?”

“What is more difficult for you to accept? That you lived in the first instance (now), or that you will live in the second instance (then)?”

“This conversation is kind of bending my mind. Let’s change the subject.”

“Okay.”

“What is your purpose? What mark will you leave on the world?”

“That is up for the world to determine. Perhaps nothing more than a kind and loving husband and father.”

“You are already way past that. Your writings subdued Wall Street nearly singlehandedly and were the catalyst and basis for a 2015 9-0 ruling in the United States Supreme Court. You have already had a profound impact on the lives of hundreds of millions.”

“Okay.”

“What will be added to your legacy?”

“Oh, who knows. Perhaps nothing. Perhaps something monumental.”

“Do you have anything else to say?”

“Perhaps. Stoic philosopher, Epictetus, also spent time in prison. I identify with him and value his thoughts. Maybe I will end with his words.”

“I can only say this to you: That he who does not know who he is; And for what purpose he exists; And what is this world; And with whom he is associated; And what things are the good and the bad; And the beautiful and the ugly; And who neither understands discourse; Nor demonstration; Nor what is true; Nor what is false; And who is not able to distinguish them; Will neither desire according to nature; Nor turn away; Nor move upward; Nor intentionally act; Nor assent; Nor dissent; Nor suspend his judgment; To say all in a few words; He will go about dumb; And blind; Thinking that he is somebody; But being nobody.”

______________________

FN1 www.theamericanreporter.com

FN2 www.theamericanreporter.com/what-ever-happened-to-matt-hutcheson/

FN3 www.bellohutch.com/great-living-stoics

www.tinyurl.com/mdhbooks1

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