Johnny Red Presents A Tribute to Nikola Tesla: The Man Who Rode the Lightning, Literally

Hey everyone! Do you enjoy listening to the radio? Do you enjoy having wireless cellphone and internet use? Do you enjoy having power to run all your gizmos, household appliances, etc.? Are you glad you have electric light instead of carrying around torches in the dark like some caveman?

Well if you said yes to any of those questions, then it’s about time you learn about the man who brought all this about. No, not Thomas Edison. No, not Guglielmo Marconi. But the man who rightfully deserves the credit and recognition for bringing about an age of electrical wonder to the World. A man who spent the majority of his life fighting off spiteful rivals, such as Thomas Edison, and greedy corporate whores, such as J. P. Morgan.

The man was Nikola Tesla.




Wait? What? Who’s Nikola Tesla, you ask? Well I’m not surprised if you haven’t heard of him, considering how much he was forced into obscurity by the powers that be. Nikola Tesla was what most of the established scientific community called, “A Mad Scientist.” So, naturally he’s a hero of mine!

With this tribute my Team of Scientists and I will try to tell the story of Nikola Tesla to all my readers. At the same time I’ll also try to exhibit how Thomas Edison is a douchebag of epic proportions.




Nikola Tesla left his home country, that is now known as Croatia, towards the end of the 19th century. He came to America with nothing in his pockets but four cents and a book of poetry. But who are we kidding, four cents back then probably paid for a month’s rent, and reciting poetry could have possibly got him all the groceries he needed. It was a different time back then. What? You think I’m full of shit Scientist #2? Well prove me wrong then. You can’t can you? Well maybe if somebody had fixed the Time Machine, then that somebody could prove me wrong. For now be quiet because I’m narrating here.

Anyway, back to Nikola Tesla. You see Tesla had been working on some minor projects for Thomas Edison in Paris, France. Impressed by his work Edison lured Tesla to America with the promise of work. Edison also told Tesla that if he could improve his own direct current generators, then he would be paid $50,000. Tesla worked night and day and also gave up several new patents in the process to Edison’s company. In the end Tesla managed to greatly improve Edison’s direct current generators. Tesla then inquired about the money Edison promised. Edison’s response:

“Tesla, you don’t seem to understand our American Humor.”

Douchebag move number one by Thomas Edison. And for each douchebag move Edison does in this tribute will be followed by a “Edison Hate Future”, strip done by one of my favorite writers Warren Ellis.




Needless to say Tesla took this news pretty hard. Having not recievedthe money he was promised Tesla left Edison’s company and performed manual labor for a time to raise enough money to finally experiment withhis own theory of Alternating Currents, which ran directly in the face of Edison’s Direct Current technology. Having secured a position with The Westinghouse Company, Tesla began to develop motors that ran on alternating current. Edison, like the villain he was, returned to cause Tesla even more trouble.

Edison tried to convince the Westinghouse company that his motors running on direct current were superiour to Tesla’s alternating current technology. Also he did a bunch of trash talking. He told Westinghouse that Tesla was a crackpot because Tesla’s theories and technology had no scientific merit because Tesla’s theories came to him in visions and hallucinations.

Edison wasn’t lying about this. Tesla claimed his ideas and theories came to him in flashes of light during the many hallucinations Tesla suffered in his life. Tesla did not deny this.

“Like a flash of lightning and in an instant the truthwas revealed. I drew with a stick on the sand the diagrams of my motor. A thousand secrets of nature which  I might have stumbled upon accidently I would have given for that one which I had wrestled from her against all odds and at the peril of my existance.” – Nikola Tesla


Tesla this...but only with brilliant theories and details attached.

Tesla this...but only with brilliant theories and details attached.


Curious about how Tesla was able to derive scientific knowledge from hallucinations, I decided to try this myself. Scientist #3 procured for me several…um…items to help me have my own hallucination. This was  the result.


Scientific Merit: None  Entertainment Value: Heaps

Scientific Merit: None, Entertainment Value: Heaps


Edison’s attempts at making Tesla look like a raving psycho were fruitless, as Westinghouse decided to side with Tesla and his more efficient alternating current technology. Oh yeah and I almost forgot. Here’s another “Edison Hate Future” for his feable attempts to discredit Tesla yet again.





Westinghouse then presented a task to Tesla. A task that will be forever remembered as the night Tesla brought light to the world. The Chicago Expo of 1893 was in full swing and Westinghouse wanted to bring something special to the spectators one evening. Using Tesla’s alternating current motors, they were able to bring transferable electricity to the world on a massive scale. 


Actual shot of the the 1893 Chicago World's Fair, where Tesla literally brought light to the darkness.

Actual shot of the the 1893 Chicago World's Fair, where Tesla literally brought light to the darkness.


It seemed Tesla was well on his way to becoming a wealthy and successful man. He had proved himself to the world and deserved all the recognition he was recieving. Well that was until, you guessed it, Edison came back on the scene to try and destroy Tesla’s reputation yet again.

And in typical ignorant, and jealous fashion that petty, spiteful men do, Edison decided to try and use fear to destroy Tesla. Edison began performing public spectacles to try and convince the public that alternating current technology was dangerous. Of course running electricity was a new thing back then, and Edison wanted to use the general public’signorance to his advantage. So what exactly did Edison do? Well how about taking animals into the public square and literally electrocuting them to death. He electrocuted horses at first, but then moved on to something more shocking, no pun intended.


That's Topsy the elephant. Edison electrocuted him in public. What a bastard!

That's Topsy the elephant. Edison electrocuted him in public. What a bastard!


You really have to wonder how much hate one person has to have in their heart to be able to do this to an innocent animal. Edison apparently had loads of hate to spare. So, once again Edison, you deserve this.





This battle between Edison and Tesla became known as The War of the Currents. It was around this time that Tesla became more vocal and critical of Edison. He claimed while working with Edison he saw him struggle with very simple problems and obstacles.

“If Edison had a needle to find in a haystack, he would proceed at once with the diligence of a bee to examine straw after straw until he found the object of his search. I was a sorry witness of such doings, knowing that a little theory and calculation would have saved him ninety per cent of his labor.” – Nikola Tesla


And it seems Edison himself didn’t deny this.



Spice it up all you like Edison, but it still sounds like you fail.

Spice it up all you like Edison, but it still sounds like you fail.


Undeterred by Edison’s antics. Tesla moved on to even greater things. He discovered a way to transmit free electrical energy through the air itself! He achieved this with his Tesla Coil. In fact, hey team of scientists! Get to work on creating our own Tesla coil! I don’t care how you do it, just do it!

Like a Mad Scientist’s dream come true, the Tesla Coil is a device that uses the air itself to transfer electricity. You’ve probably seen them before.


An example of how bad ass science can be!!

An example of how bad ass science can be!!


With these Tesla Coils, Tesla discovered that electrical energy could be transferred to many devices without the use of wires. Some of his most well known photographs are of Tesla holding a  light bulb and powering it through the air itself.


Look kids! No wires!

Look kids! No wires!


Withthis discovery Tesla realized that free energy to the world was a possibility. You see Tesla wanted nothing more than to have his discoveries and inventions be a benefit to mankind. This attitude attracted other like-minded individuals to his side. One was the legendary Mark Twain who spent many hours with Tesla learning and witnessing his amazing discoveries.


Here we see Mark Twain, and Nikola Tesla. I love this image. Two spokesman for humanity captured for eternity.

Here we see Mark Twain, and Nikola Tesla. I love this image. Two spokesman for humanity captured for eternity.


Twain had developed a bond with Tesla in the goal of helping humanity with whatever skills they had to offer. Twain backed up and supported Tesla’s revolutionary ideas, and felt those holding him back had no interest in the future possibilities Tesla could offer.


I think a tribute to Mark Twain is coming in the near future.

I think a tribute to Mark Twain is coming in the near future.


These new discoveries raised the interest in J. P. Morgan, the legendary financier and banker. Morgan offered Tesla $150,000 to build a tower that could transmit the first wireless transatlantic message. Morgan believed that wireless communication was the way of the future. Tesla agreed and began work on his Wardenclyffe tower. But Tesla was also keeping a secret from Morgan on exactly what this tower could do.


Wardenclyffe Tower: Sure it could transfer messages across the Atlantic, BUT it held other secrets as well.

Wardenclyffe Tower: Sure it could transfer messages across the Atlantic, BUT it held other secrets as well.


You see Wardenclyffe Tower was also one giant Tesla Coil. In theory a structure that could provide free electrical power to quite possibly the entire world. When Tesla’s funding ran short he was forced to return to Morgan to ask for more money to finish the tower. Morgan was curious about why this tower, which was only to transfer wireless messages, was costing so much money. Tesla was forced to admit that  the tower was also a device to transfer free energy.

Morgan didn’t take this well at all. Morgan told Tesla that this tower can’t be finished because, “You can’t put a meter on the air.” Morgan immediately ordered Wardenclyffe Tower destroyed and pulled any and all funding Tesla had remaining. Apparently in Morgan’s eyes, free energy was a threat to his profit margin.


J. P. Morgan doing his best Ebenezer Scrooge impersonation.

J. P. Morgan doing his best Ebenezer Scrooge impersonation.


Guglielmo Marconi eventually performed the first successful wireless transmission. And although for decades Marconi recieved credit for inventing the radio, he was actually using Tesla’s patents to achieve this goal. Tesla said of Marconi, “Let him continue his work. After all he is using seven of my patents.”

After Tesla’s funding was pulled by Morgan, he was ruined. No one would fund his experiments for fear he would actually create free energy for the benefit of the world. This once great man was forced into obscurity, and left penniless. Although he had no funding he continued to develop his theories and ideas, even if they wouldn’t ever be actualized. Tesla became known as a recluse mad scientist.


Yes, Nikola Tesla, the future will eventually be yours.

Yes, Nikola Tesla, the future will eventually be yours.


As time went by, Telsa become completely destitute. He spent his final years living in a hotel room in New York City. His name was only given mention by way of ridiculing him even more. He was asked to share the Nobel Peace Prize with Thomas Edison. Way to twist the knife, huh? This fell through and he didn’t receivethe prize. He was also later “honored” with the now annual Edison Award. He never showed up to receive the award. Instead they found him sitting on a bench across the street of the banquet hall, feeding pigeons.

Nikola Tesla never compromised in his belief that science and technology could be used to benefit mankind, and that should be the sole purpose of technological advancement. And one final insult came from our Government’s own J. Edgar Hoover. The day Nikola Tesla died, Hoover ransacked his hotel room and confiscated all of Tesla’s work.




So Johnny Red is raising a glass to Nikola Tesla and all the other brilliant men and women throughout history that were persecuted, overlooked, rejected, and pushed into the shadows. History has done it’s best to keep Nikola Tesla out of the light, but history cannot, because Tesla was the one who brought light itself to the world.

What’s that? You’ve completed my Tesla Coil!! Alright Team of Scientists, let’s see it!


Very Funny! Shut it off, now!

Very Funny! Shut it off, now!


Bonus Content:

It turns out I’m not the only one who believes Nikola Tesla deserves more recognition. I present to you the graphic novel, “The Five Fists of Science!”


It's described as a teaming up of Nikola Tesla and Mark Twain to fight the evils of Thomas Edison and J. P. Morgan! I gotta get my hands on this book!!

It's described as a teaming up of Nikola Tesla and Mark Twain to fight the evils of Thomas Edison and J. P. Morgan! I gotta get my hands on this book!!


John Michael Gagnon…aka…Johnny Red



Posted on July 31, 2009, in There is No Such Thing as Fiction and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 43 Comments.

    👏 👏👏👏👏👏👏👏
    Nikola Tesla~~~invented XX century!
    Nikola Tesla was INVENTIVE GENIUS!
    Nikola Tesla was MASTER OF LIGHTING!
    Nikola Tesla was WIZARD OF ELECTRICITY!
    I saw the movie, Tower to the people, by Joseph Sikorski, wonderful documentary.
    Now, Mr. Sikorski is working on other movie on Tesla called, Fragments from Olympus. They need funds for this movie 🎥 I wish we can all help. We can do this much for Tesla. He deserves everyone to know who he was and still is! About 80% of Tesla technology we are using today and Tesla is around us. Everything we touch is attached to Tesla’s inventions including medical field.
    Thank you for your tribute to Nikola Tesla!
    God bless,

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  6. A very enlightening and wonderful post. I know this comment is years late, but i stumbled across your blog and was so very impressed by it. It greatly saddens me to see that there seems to have been limited views of it, judging by the number of posted replys. I fully intend on sharing this blog with as many people as I can. I fully believe in giving Tesla his due. Thank you for taking the time to write about him.

  7. You are dead on with this topic… History is written by the winners… Just got done doing a two hour long podcast on the Tesla… On the Church Of Mabus RadioShow… I am all about hitting edduhson where it hurts…

  8. MikeTheScholar

    though i would have to disagree with some of the delivery, i must agree with the message. Tesla was the genious, Edison was the tyrant. don’t get me wrong, tyrants still offer something in the history books, even a fool could see that… but true genious has more in the long run. tesla, you are missed more than edison dear fellow. and a hero you shall be to us all.

  9. Hay Johnny we share similar views about the actual historic cover-up about edison (I will never capitalize this or other name) and his misplaced hemmoriodal problems. But to acknowledge what you had mentioned in your Tesla Tribute, and that is that in school we were taught lies about a man who was no genius, edison. As you know he had many great minds working under him and as they labored he reaped the patient rights. He was a Flim Flam Man

  10. I love that Nikola was so confident of being heralded….sheer genius

  11. Could you post the link to download the book?

  12. Don’t get me wrong – I heart Tesla and his work… but you can’t make “free energy” – it has to come from somewhere it’s a basic principal of physics – while Tesla’s work was very important, you can’t grab at every fleeting notion he wrote down and claim it as genius… That’s not in any way scientific and would make Tesla himself disgusted.

    • Let me redefine, “free”. Massive amounts of electricity provided with minimal maintenence and cost. Taxes could have been used for upkeep and such. Profit motive in all levels of our society has put up a roadblock to the progression of the human race. Look at the cost in dollars and lives as a result of our dependence on oil. There was an electric car created in the late 1880’s that could achieve speeds of up to 60mph. Now are we all stupid enough to think we can’t efficiently create an electric car in our day and age? It’s all smoke and mirrors.

  13. this is amazing, unfortunately i see this story play out more and more as i get older like with geets, stanley meyer, ect funny enough there is so much material discrediting inventors that threaten to make something free thank god for the internet, otherwise id still be a pawn to greed censorship and corruption, id really like to find a way to stick it to the man.. im talking about the man that takes a percentage of my hard work simply becuase he wants it to live like a king, going to research this more as iv found some links with the tesla coil and highly efficient HHO (fuel production) thankyou so much for teaching me the truth about Edison, all this time i thought of him as a genius, wen facts point the opposite way

  14. Excellent post, great looking website, added it to my favorites.

  15. This article is amazing I just recently discovered Tesla’s work during all my years in School he has never been mentioned and it makes perfect sense, why would he this would allow society an equal oppurtunity to create there own free energy. It is also sad how the only thing our culture revolves on is money and without it you are powerless this man is a true heroe and a leader of human evolution.

    • Thanks for the comments Oscar! I truly believe with the constant
      talk about our energy crisis nowadays, it’s truly time to take
      a serious look at Tesla’s work. I recently read an article
      where they want to put generators in the ocean near Florida’s
      coast to try and generate electricity through the current. This
      seems like an awful lot of work when a hundred years ago the
      Tesla coil was proven to transmit electricity through the air.
      Imagine if the last hundred years was spent developing Tesla’s
      technologies? But of course the powers that be need a profit
      motive. It’s frustrating when simple solutions have always been
      right there, but instead are covered up.

  16. I am very happy to find that there are others out there with the same thoughts as i concerning Tesla.All of us owe this man our thanks and recognition.He was without a doubt the most brilliant scientist who has ever lived.I am not very good with statistics,but,i am probably well within the truth in saying that he deserves the credit for 75 percent of all of our wonderful modern technology.He was a REAL human being AND a REAL hero.

    • Thanks for taking the time to read my blog. Tesla is without a doubt
      the greatest scientist who has ever lived. Imagine if instead
      of casting him into obscurity, his ideas were developed? Almost a
      hundred years of development has been lost.

  17. Great post man! I loved the “Edison hate future” interlude!

  18. Excelent post! A well deserved tribute to a real hero.
    “Freedom is what you do with what’s been done to you.” -Jean-Paul Sartre.

    I’m really happy I found this blog, even though I know it’s kinda late to comment on this post, I feel I gotta comment anyway. Keep up the good work!

  19. Awesome, He a hero of mine aswell, keep up the good work!

    “Within a few years a simple and inexpensive device, readily carried about, will enable one to receive on land or sea the principal news, to hear a speech, a lecture, a song or play of a musical instrument, conveyed from any other region of the globe”
    Tesla (1905)

  20. And thus is illustrated, in glaring sunlight, the difference between capitalists who just don’t care about the public good and the rest of us…represented by Tesla – remember this when you think of the healthcare debate… same thing, only more elephants are dying every day to maintain corporate profits….

  21. It is soooo rare that people mention how great other people are BECAUSE they did NOT care about the CASH OR GLORY just ABOUT the PURPOSE & BETTER for OTHERS!!! And how they got screwed because someone else wanted MORE MORE MORE & MORE of WHATEVER (BLAHHH) GREAT job John!!!

  22. Tesla is my hero! I can’t believe you did a blog about him! I haven’t met anyone else yet who loves him as much as I do. He was very charismatic, and all the New York actresses were after him, but he was a sever touch freak. He didn’t like women’s hair, and he always wore sparkling white goves. A very troubled and complicated but brilliant and inspirational guy. I tried to write a play about him once, but abandoned it. I looove Tesla! Thanks for writing about him, he DOES deserve more credit. Screw Edison!

    • That was from me.

      • Thanks Sara! Yeah Tesla has been a hero of mine for a while now. I do remember reading about how he hated to shake hands and be touched. I wanted to include that and a lot of other stuff in the blog, but was running out of time, and it was getting too long.

        I may have to do another blog on him as well, or dedicate a blog category to him.

        Glad you enjoyed it!

  23. That was an amazing read, John. I suppose what we’ve been taught as truth in history books as children may never be seriously challenged, but I applaud your attempt! Keep fighting for all of our unsung heroes!

    • Thanks Donna! We should all keep in mind that history is always written by the winners, and little is ever mentioned about those that were the real winners.

  24. So why haven’t we built our own Tesla Coil for the valley?

  25. Very en”ight”ening John!

  26. This was amazing, John. My favorite blog entry to date… I’m ‘digg’ing it right this second.

    • Thanks Nicole! There was so much I left out of the blog as well.

      It drives me nuts to read about how corporations and the government are still “trying” to discover ways to provide cheap energy to the public. I read about how in Florida they want to put generators under water and use the ocean to generate electricity, but there are questions about the marine life, and the effect on the environment. When all they had to do was develop Tesla’s ideas. They would have had over 100 years to perfect his Tesla coil technology. But again it would have been free energy. That’s not allowed. lol!

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