Tag Archives: Soviet Union

A Soviet Foreign Policy: A Revisionist Perspective

A communist star

Image via Wikipedia

Very interesting view of the Soviets. A view that, even today, is contrary to the traditional anti-communist rhetoric one would hear in a conversation about communism from most “conservatives”. (E)

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by Murray N. Rothbard

This excerpt from For a New Liberty was first printed in the Libertarian Review, 1978.

Since World War II, American military and foreign policy, at least rhetorically, has been based upon the assumption of a looming threat of Russian attack – an assumption that has managed to gain public approval for global American intervention and for scores of billions in military expenditures. But how realistic, how well grounded, is this assumption?

First, there is no doubt that the Soviets, along with all other Marxist-Leninists, would like to replace all existing social systems by Communist regimes. But such a sentiment, of course, scarcely implies any sort of realistic threat of attack – just as an ill wish in private life can hardly be grounds for realistic expectation of imminent aggression.

On the contrary, Marxism-Leninism itself believes that victory of Communism is inevitable – not on the wings of outside force, but rather from accumulating tensions and “contradictions” within each society. So that Marxism-Leninism considers internal revolution (or, in the current “Eurocommunist” version, democratic change) for installing Communism to be inevitable. At the same time, it holds any coercive external imposition of Communism to be at best suspect, and at worst disruptive and counterproductive of genuine organic social change. Any idea of “exporting” Communism to other countries on the back of the Soviet military is totally contradictory to Marxist-Leninist theory.

We are not saying, of course, that Soviet leaders will never do anything contrary to Marxist-Leninist theory. But to the extent that they act as ordinary rulers of a strong Russian nation-state, the case for an imminent Soviet threat to the United States is gravely weakened. For the sole alleged basis of such a threat, as conjured up by our Cold Warriors, is the Soviet Union’s alleged devotion to Marxist-Leninist theory and to its ultimate goal of world Communist triumph. If the Soviet rulers were simply to act as Russian dictators consulting only their own nation-state interests, then the entire basis for treating the Soviets as a uniquely diabolic source of imminent military assault crumbles to the ground.

When the Bolsheviks took power in Russia in 1917, they had given little thought to a future Soviet foreign policy, for they were convinced that Communist revolution would soon follow in the advanced industrial countries of Western Europe. When such hopes were dashed after the end of World War I, Lenin and his fellow Bolsheviks adopted the theory of “peaceful coexistence” as the basic foreign policy for a Communist state.

The idea was this: As the first successful Communist movement, Soviet Russia would serve as a beacon light and supporter of other Communist parties throughout the world. But the Soviet state qua state would devote itself to peaceful relations with all other countries, and would not attempt to export Communism through interstate warfare. The idea here was not just to follow Marxist-Leninist theory, but also the highly practical course of holding the survival of the existing Communist state as the foremost goal of foreign policy: that is, never to endanger the Soviet State by courting interstate warfare. Other countries would be expected to become Communist by their own internal processes.

Thus, fortuitously, from a mixture of theoretical and practical grounds of their own, the Soviets arrived early at what libertarians consider to be the only proper and principled foreign policy. As time went on, furthermore, this policy was reinforced by a “conservatism” that comes upon all movements after they have acquired and retained power for a length of time, in which the interests of keeping power over one’s nation-state begins to take more and more precedence over the initial ideal of world revolution. This increasing conservatism under Stalin and his successors strengthened and reinforced the nonaggressive, “peaceful-coexistence” policy.

The Bolsheviks, indeed, began their success story by being literally the only political party in Russia to clamor, from the beginning of World War I, for an immediate Russian pullout from the war. Indeed, they went further and courted enormous unpopularity by calling for the defeat of “their own” government (“revolutionary defeatism”).

When Russia began to suffer enormous losses, accompanied by massive military desertions from the front, the Bolsheviks, guided by Lenin, continued to be the only party to call for an immediate end to the war, the other parties still vowing to fight the Germans to the end. When the Bolsheviks came to power, Lenin, over the hysterical opposition of even the majority of the Bolshevik central committee itself, insisted on concluding the “appeasement” peace of Brest-Litovsk in March 1918.

Here Lenin succeeded in taking Russia out of the war, even at the price of granting to the victorious German army all the parts of the Russian Empire it then occupied (including White Russia and the Ukraine). Thus, Lenin and the Bolsheviks began their reign by being not simply a peace party, but virtually a “peace-at-any-price” party.

After World War I and Germany’s defeat, the new Polish state attacked Russia and succeeded in grabbing for itself a large chunk of White Russia and the Ukraine. Taking advantage of the turmoil and civil war within Russia at the end of the world war, various other national groups – Finland, Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania – decided to break away from the pre–World War I Russian Empire and declare national independence.

While Leninism pays lip service to national self-determination, it was clear to Soviet rulers from the very beginning that the boundaries of the old Russian state were supposed to remain intact. The Red Army reconquered the Ukraine, not only from the Whites, but also from the Ukrainian nationalists and from the indigenously Ukrainian anarchist army of Nestor Makhno.

For the rest, it was clear that Russia, like Germany in the 1920s and 1930s, was a “revisionist” country vis-à-vis the postwar settlement at Versailles: i.e., Lenin, the lodestar of both Russian and German foreign policy was to recapture their pre–World War I borders – what they both considered the “true” borders of their respective states. It should be noted that every political party or tendency in Russia and Germany, whether ruling the state or in opposition, agreed with this aim of full restoration of national territory.

But, it should be emphasized, while Germany under Hitler took strong measures to recapture the lost lands, the cautious and conservative Soviet rulers did absolutely nothing. Only after the Stalin-Hitler pact and the German conquest of Poland did the Soviets, now facing no danger in doing so, recapture their lost territories. Specifically, the Russians repossessed Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania, as well as the old Russian lands of White Russia and the Ukraine that had been Eastern Poland.

And they were able to do so without a fight. The old, pre–World War I Russia had now been restored with the exception of Finland. But Finland was prepared to fight. Here, the Russians demanded, not the reincorporation of Finland as a whole, but only of parts of the Karelian Isthmus that were ethnically Russian. When the Finns refused this demand, the “Winter War” (1939–1940) between Russia and Finland ensued, which ended with the Finns victorious and conceding nothing.

On June 22, 1941, Germany, triumphant over everyone but England in the west, launched a sudden massive and unprovoked assault on Soviet Russia, an act of aggression aided and abetted by the other pro-German states in Eastern Europe – Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Slovakia, and Finland. This German and allied invasion of Russia soon became one of the pivotal facts in the history of Europe since that date.

So unprepared was Stalin for the assault, so trusting was he in the rationality of the German-Russian accord for peace in Eastern Europe, that he had allowed the Russian army to fall into disrepair. So unwarlike was Stalin, in fact, that Germany was almost able to conquer Russia in the face of enormous odds. Since Germany otherwise would have been able to retain control of Europe indefinitely, it was Hitler who was led by the siren call of anti-Communist ideology to throw away a rational and prudent course and launch what was to be the beginning of his ultimate defeat.

World War II and the Soviets

The mythology of the Cold Warriors often concedes that the Soviets were not internationally aggressive until World War II – indeed, they are compelled to assert this point, since most Cold Warriors heartily approve the World War II alliance of the United States with Russia against Germany. It was during and immediately after the war, they assert, that Russia became expansionist and drove its way into Eastern Europe.

What this charge overlooks is the central fact of the German and associated assault upon Russia in June 1941. There is no doubt about the fact that Germany and her allies launched this war. Hence, in order to defeat the invaders, it was obviously necessary for the Russians to roll back the invading armies and conquer Germany and the other warring countries of Eastern Europe. It is easier to make out a case for the United States being expansionist for conquering and occupying Italy and part of Germany than it is for Russia doing so – after all, the United States was never directly attacked by the Germans.

During World War II, the United States, Britain, and Russia – the three major Allies – had agreed on joint three-power military occupation of all the conquered territories. The United States was the first to break the agreement during the war by allowing Russia no role whatever in the military occupation of Italy. Despite this serious breach of agreement, Stalin displayed his consistent preference for the conservative interests of the Russian nation-state over cleaving to revolutionary ideology – by repeatedly betraying indigenous Communist movements.

In order to preserve peaceful relations between Russia and the West, Stalin consistently tried to hold back the success of various Communist movements. He was successful in France and Italy, where Communist partisan groups might easily have seized power in the wake of the German military retreat; but Stalin ordered them not to do so, and instead persuaded them to join coalition regimes headed by anti-Communist parties. In both countries, the Communists were soon ousted from the coalition. In Greece, where the Communist partisans almost did seize power, Stalin irretrievably weakened them by abandoning them and urging them to turn over power to newly invading British troops.

In other countries, particularly ones where Communist partisan groups were strong, the Communists flatly refused Stalin’s requests. In Yugoslavia, the victorious Tito refused Stalin’s demand that Tito subordinate himself to the anti-Communist Mihailovich in a governing coalition; and Mao refused a similar Stalin demand that he subordinate himself to Chiang Kai-shek. There is no doubt that these rejections were the beginning of the later, extraordinarily important schisms within the world Communist movement.

Russia, therefore, governed Eastern Europe as military occupier after winning a war launched against her. Russia’s initial goal was not to Communize Eastern Europe on the backs of the Soviet Army. Her goal was to gain assurances that Eastern Europe would not be the broad highway for an assault on Russia, as it had been three times in half a century – the last time in a war in which over 20 million Russians had been slaughtered.

In short, Russia wanted countries on her border that would not be anti-Communist in a military sense, and that would not be used as a springboard for another invasion. Political conditions in Eastern Europe were such that only in more modernized Finland did non-Communist politicians exist whom Russia could trust to pursue a peaceful line in foreign affairs.

And in Finland, this situation was the work of one far-seeing statesman, the agrarian leader Julio Paasikivi. It was because Finland, then and since, has firmly followed the “Paasikivi line” that Russia was willing to pull its troops out of Finland and not to insist on the Communization of that country – even though it had fought two wars with Finland in the previous six years.

Even in the other Eastern European countries, Russia clung to coalition governments for several years after the war, and only fully Communized them in 1948 – after three years of unrelenting American Cold-War pressure to try to oust Russia from these countries. In other areas, Russia readily pulled its troops out of Austria and out of Azerbaijan.

The cold warriors find it difficult to explain Russian actions in Finland. If Russia is always hell-bent to impose Communist rule wherever it can, why the “soft line” on Finland? The only plausible explanation is that its motivation is security for the Russian nation-state against attack, with the success of world Communism playing a very minor role in its scale of priorities.

Schisms and World Communism

In fact, the Cold Warriors have never been able either to explain or absorb the fact of deep schisms in the world Communist movement. For if all Communists are governed by a common ideology, then every Communist everywhere should be part of one unified monolith, and one which, given the early success of the Bolsheviks, would make them subordinates or “agents” of Moscow.

If Communists are mainly motivated by their bond of Marxism-Leninism, why do we have the deep China-Russia split, in which Russia, for example, keeps one million troops at the ready on the China-Russia frontier? Why is there such enmity between the Yugoslav Communist and the Albanian Communist states? How can there be an actual military conflict between the Cambodian and Vietnamese Communists?

The answer, of course, is that once a revolutionary movement seizes state power, it very quickly begins to take on the attributes of a ruling class, with a class interest in retaining state power. The world revolution begins to pale, in their outlook, to insignificance. And since state elites can and do have conflicting interests in power and wealth, it is not surprising that inter-Communist conflicts have become endemic.

Since their victory over German military aggression in World War II, the Soviets have continued to be conservative in their military policy. Their only use of troops has been to defend their territory in the Communist bloc, rather than to extend it further. Thus, when Hungary threatened to leave the Soviet block in 1956, or Czechoslovakia in 1968, the Soviets intervened with troops – reprehensibly, to be sure, but still acting in a conservative and defensive, rather than expansionist, manner. (The Soviets apparently gave considerable thought to invading Yugoslavia when Tito took that country out of the Soviet bloc, but were deterred by the formidable qualities for guerrilla fighting of the Yugoslav army.) In no case has Russia used troops to extend its bloc or to conquer more territories.

Professor Stephen F. Cohen, director of the program in Russian studies at Princeton, has delineated the nature of Soviet conservatism in foreign affairs in a recent issue of Inquiry:

That a system born in revolution and still professing revolutionary ideas should have become one of the most conservative in the world may seem preposterous. But all those factors variously said to be most important in Soviet politics have contributed to this conservatism: the bureaucratic tradition of Russian government before the revolution; the subsequent bureaucratization of Soviet life, which proliferated conservative norms and created an entrenched class of zealous defenders of bureaucratic privilege; the geriatric nature of the present-day elite; and even the official ideology, whose thrust turned many years ago from the creation of a new social order to extolling the existing one. …

In other words, the main thrust of Soviet conservatism today is to preserve what it already has at home and abroad, not to jeopardize it. A conservative government is, of course, capable of dangerous militaristic actions, as we saw in Czechoslovakia … but these are acts of imperial protectionism, a kind of defensive militarism, not a revolutionary or aggrandizing one. It is certainly true that for most Soviet leaders, as presumably for most American leaders, detente is not an altruistic endeavor but the pursuit of national interests. In one sense, this is sad. But it is probably also true that mutual self-interest provides a more durable basis for detente than lofty, and finally empty, altruism (“Why Detente Can Work,” December 19, 1977).

Similarly, as impeccable an anti-Soviet source as former CIA Director William Colby finds the overwhelming concern of the Soviets in the defensive goal of avoiding another catastrophic invasion of their territory. As Colby testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee,

You will find a concern, even a paranoia, over their [the Soviets’] own security. You will find the determination that they shall never again be invaded and put through the kinds of turmoil that they have been under and many different invasions. … I think that they … want to overprotect themselves to make certain that that does not happen.

Even the Chinese, for all their bluster, have pursued a conservative and pacific foreign policy. Not only have they failed to invade Taiwan, recognized internationally as part of China, but they have even allowed the small offshore islands of Quemoy and Matsu to remain in Chiang Kai-shek’s hands. No moves have been made against the British and Portuguese-occupied exclaves of Hong Kong and Macao. And China even took the unusual step of declaring a unilateral cease-fire and withdrawal of forces to its border after having triumphed easily over Indian arms in their escalated border war. (See Neville Maxwell, India’s China War [New York: Pantheon Books, 1970].)

Neither is China’s reconquest and suppression of national rebellion in Tibet a valid point against our thesis. For Chiang Kai-shek as well as all other Chinese have for many generations considered Tibet as part of Greater China, and China was here acting in the same conservative, nation-state manner as we have seen has guided the Soviets.

Avoiding A Priori History

There is still one thesis common to Americans and even to some libertarians that may prevent them from absorbing the analysis of this chapter: the myth propounded by Woodrow Wilson that democracies must inevitably be peace-loving while dictatorships are inevitably warlike. This thesis was of course highly convenient for covering Wilson’s own culpability for dragging America into a needless and monstrous war. But there is simply no evidence for this assumption.

Many dictatorships have turned inward, cautiously confining themselves to preying on their own people. Examples range from premodern Japan to Communist Albania to innumerable dictatorships in the Third World today. Uganda’s Idi Amin, perhaps the most brutal and repressive dictator in today’s world, shows no signs whatever of jeopardizing his regime by invading neighboring countries. On the other hand, such an indubitable democracy as Great Britain spread its coercive imperialism across the globe during the 19th and earlier centuries.

The theoretical reason why focusing on democracy or dictatorship misses the point is that statesallstates – rule their population and decide whether or not to make war. And all states, whether formally a democracy or dictatorship or some other brand of rule, are run by a ruling elite. Whether or not these elites, in any particular case, will make war upon another state is a function of a complex interweaving web of causes, including the temperament of the rulers, the strength of their enemies, the inducements for war, public opinion, etc.

While public opinion has to be gauged in either case, the only real difference between a democracy and a dictatorship on making war is that in the former more propaganda must be beamed at one’s subjects to engineer their approval. Intensive propaganda is necessary in any case – as we can see by the zealous opinion-molding behavior of all modern warring states.

But the democratic state must work harder and faster. And also the democratic state must be more hypocritical in using rhetoric designed to appeal to the values of the masses: justice, freedom, national interest, patriotism, world peace, etc. So that in democratic states the art of propaganda the elite uses over its subjects must be a bit more sophisticated and refined. But this, as we have seen, is true of all governmental decisions, not just war or peace.

For all governments – but especially democratic governments – must work hard at persuading their subjects that all of their deeds of oppression are really in their subjects’ best interests. What we have said about democracy and dictatorship applies equally to the lack of correlation between degrees of internal freedom in a country and its external aggressiveness. Some states have proved themselves perfectly capable of allowing a considerable degree of freedom internally while making aggressive war abroad, while others have shown themselves capable of totalitarian rule internally while pursuing a pacific foreign policy. The examples of Idi Amin, Albania, China, Great Britain, etc., apply equally well in this comparison.

In short, libertarians and other Americans must guard against a priori history: in this case, against the assumption that, in any conflict, that state which is more democratic or allows more internal freedom is necessarily or even presumptively the victim of aggression by the more dictatorial or totalitarian state. There is simply no historical evidence whatever for such a presumption.

In deciding on relative rights and wrongs, on relative degrees of aggression, in any dispute in foreign affairs, there is no substitute for a detailed, empirical, historical investigation of the dispute itself. It should occasion no great surprise, then, if such an investigation concludes that a democratic and relatively far freer United States has been more aggressive and imperialistic in foreign affairs than a relatively totalitarian Russia or China. Conversely, hailing a state for being less aggressive in foreign affairs in no way implies that the observer is in any way sympathetic to that state’s internal record.

It is vital – indeed, it is literally a life-and-death matter – that Americans be able to look as coolly and clear-sightedly, as free from myth, at their government’s record in foreign affairs as they increasingly are able to do in domestic politics. For war and a phony “external threat” have long been the chief means by which the state wins back the loyalty of its subjects. War and militarism were the gravediggers of classical liberalism; we must not allow the state to get away with this ruse ever again.

Reprinted from Mises.org.

Murray N. Rothbard (1926–1995) was dean of the Austrian School, founder of modern libertarianism, and chief academic officer of the Mises Institute. He was also editor – with Lew Rockwell – of The Rothbard-Rockwell Report, and appointed Lew as his literary executor. See his books.


Why the War? The Kuwait Connection

by Murray N. Rothbard

This originally appeared in the May 1991 Rothbard-Rockwell Report

Why, exactly, did we go to war in the Gulf? The answer remains murky, but perhaps we can find one explanation by examining the strong and ominous Kuwait Connection in our government. (I am indebted to an excellent article in an obscure New York tabloid, Downtown, by Bob Feldman, “The Kissinger Affair,” March 27.) The Sabahklatura that runs the Kuwait government is immensely wealthy, to the tune of hundreds of billions of dollars, derived from tax/”royalty” loot extracted from oil producers simply because the Sabah tribe claims “sovereignty” over that valuable chunk of desert real estate. The Sabah tribe has no legitimate claim to the oil revenue; it did nothing to homestead or mix its labor or any other resource with the crude oil.

It is reasonable to assume that the Sabah family stands ready to use a modest portion of that ill-gotten wealth to purchase defenders and advocates in the powerful United States. We now focus our attention on the sinister but almost universally Beloved figure of Dr. Henry Kissinger, a lifelong spokesman, counselor, and servitor of the Rockefeller World Empire. Kissinger is so Beloved, in fact, that whenever he appears on Nightline or Crossfire he appears alone, since it seems to be lèse-majesté (or even blasphemy) for anyone to contradict the Great One’s banal and ponderous Teutonic pronouncements. Only a handful of grumblers and malcontents on the extreme right and extreme left disturb this cozy consensus.

In 1954, the 31-year-old Kissinger, a Harvard political scientist and admirer of Metternich, was plucked out of his academic obscurity to become lifelong foreign policy advisor to New York Governor Nelson Aldrich Rockefeller. Doctor K continued in that august role until he assumed the mastery of foreign policy throughout the Nixon and Ford administrations. In that role, Kissinger played a major part in prolonging and extending the Vietnam War, and in the mass murder of civilians entailed by the terror bombings of Vietnam, the secret bombing of Cambodia, and the invasion of Laos.

Since leaving office in 1977, Dr. Kissinger has continued to play a highly influential role in U.S. politics, in the U.S. media, and in the Rockefeller world empire. It was Kissinger, along with David Rockefeller, who was decisive in the disastrous decision of President Carter to admit the recently toppled Shah of Iran, old friend and ally of the Rockefellers into the United States, a decision that led directly to the Iranian hostage crisis and to Carter’s downfall. Today, Kissinger still continues to serve as a trustee of the powerful Rockefeller Brothers Fund, as a counselor to Rockefellers’ Chase Manhattan Bank, and as a member of Chase’s International Advisory Committee. Kissinger’s media influence is evident from his having served on the board of CBS, Inc., and having been a paid consultant to both NBC News and ABC News. That takes care of all three networks.

But Kissinger’s major, and most lucrative role, has come as head of Kissinger Associates in New York City, founded on a loan obtained in 1982 from the international banking firm of E.M. Warburg, Pincus and Company. Nominally, Kissinger Associates (KA) is an “international consulting firm” but “consultant” covers many sins, and in KA‘s case, this means international political influence-peddling for its two dozen or so important corporate clients. In the fullest report on KA, Leslie Gelb in the New York Times Magazine for April 20, 1986, reveals that, in that year, 25 to 30 corporations paid KA between $150,000 and $420,000 each per annum for political influence and access.” As Gelb blandly puts it: “The superstar international consultants [at KA] were certainly people who would get their telephone calls returned from high American government officials and who would also be able to get executives in to see foreign leaders.” I dare say a lot more than mere access could be gained thereby. KA’s offices in New York and Washington are small, but they pack a powerful punch. (Is it mere coincidence that KA’s Park Avenue headquarters is in the same building as the local office of Chase Manhattan Bank’s subsidiary, the Commercial Bank of Kuwait?)

Who were these “superstar international consultants?” One of them, who in 1986 was the vice chairman of KA, is none other than General Brent Scowcroft, former national security advisor under President Ford, and, playing the exact same role under George Bush, serving as the chief architect of the Gulf War. One of the General’s top clients was Kuwait’s government-owned Kuwait Petroleum Corporation, who paid Scowcroft for his services at least from 1984 through 1986. In addition, Scowcroft became a director of Santa Fe International (SFI) in the early 1980s, not long after SFI was purchased by the Kuwait Petroleum Corporation in 1981. Joining Scowcroft on the SFI board was Scowcroft’s old boss, Gerald Ford. One of SFI’s activities is drilling oil wells in Kuwait, an operation which, of course, had to be suspended after the Iraq invasion.

Brent Scowcroft, it is clear, has enjoyed a long-standing and lucrative Kuwait connection. Is it a coincidence that it was Scowcroft’s National Security Council presentation on August 3, 1990, which according to the New York Times (February 21) “crystallized people’s thinking and galvanized support” for a “strong response” to the Iraq invasion of Kuwait?

Scowcroft, by the way, does not exhaust the Republican administrations’ revolving door among Kissinger Associates. Another top KA official, Lawrence Eagleburger, undersecretary of state under Reagan, has returned to high office after a stint at KA as deputy secretary of state under George Bush.

Also vitally important at KA are the members of its board of directors. One director is T. Jefferson Cunningham III, who is also a director of the Midland Bank of Britain, which has also been a KA client. The fascinating point here is that 10.5 percent of this $4 billion bank is owned by the Kuwait government. And Kissinger, as head of KA, is of course concerned to advance the interests of his clients – which include the Midland Bank and therefore the government of Kuwait. Does this connection have anything to do with Kissinger’s ultra-hawkish views on the Gulf War? In the meantime, Kissinger continues to serve on President Bush’s Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board, which gives Kissinger not only a channel for giving advice but also gives him access to national security information which could prove useful to KA’s corporate clients.

Another KA client is the Fluor Corporation, which has a special interest in Saudi Arabia. Shortly before the August 2 invasion, Saudi Arabia decided to launch a $30 to $40 billion project to expand oil production, and granted two huge oil contracts to the Parson and Fluor corporations. (New York Times, August 21)

One member of KA’s board of directors is ARCO Chairman Robert O. Anderson; ARCO, also one of KA’s clients, is engaged in joint oil-exploration and oil-drilling in offshore China with Santa Fe International, the subsidiary of the Kuwait government.

Other KA board members are William D. Rogers, undersecretary of state in the Eisenhower administration, and long-time leading Dewey-Rockefeller Republican in New York; former Citibank (Rockefeller) Chairman Edward Palmer; and Eric Lord Roll, economist and chairman of the board of the London international banking house of S.F. Warburg.

Perhaps the most interesting KA board member is one of the most Beloved figures in the conservative movement, William E. Simon, secretary of treasury in the Nixon and Ford administrations. When Simon left office in 1977, he became a consultant to the Bechtel Corporation, which has had the major massive construction contracts to build oil refineries and cities in Saudi Arabia. In addition, Simon became a consultant to Suliman Olayan, one of the wealthiest and most powerful businessmen in Saudi Arabia. Long a close associate of the oil-rich Saudi royal family, Olayan had served Bechtel well by getting it the multi-billion contract to build the oil city of Jubail. In 1980, furthermore, Olayan hired William Simon to be chairman of two investment firms owned jointly by himself and the influential Saudi Prince Khaled al Saud.

Bechtel, the Rockefellers, and the Saudi royal family have long had an intimate connection. After the Saudis granted the Rockefeller-dominated Aramco oil consortium the monopoly of oil in Saudi Arabia, the Rockefellers brought their pals at Bechtel in on the construction contracts. The Bechtel Corporation, of course, has also contributed George Shultz and Cap Weinberger to high office in Republican administrations. To complete the circle, KA director Simon’s former boss Suliman Olayan was, in 1988, the largest shareholder in the Chase Manhattan Bank after David Rockefeller himself.

The pattern is clear. An old New Left slogan held that “you don’t need a weatherman to tell you how the wind is blowing.” In the same way, you don’t need to be a “conspiracy theorist” to see what’s going on here. All you have to do is be willing to use your eyes.

Murray N. Rothbard (1926–1995) was dean of the Austrian School, founder of modern libertarianism, and chief academic officer of the Mises Institute. He was also editor – with Lew Rockwell – of The Rothbard-Rockwell Report, and appointed Lew as his literary executor. See his books.

The Best of Murray Rothbard


The Five Stages of Collapse

CLUBORLOV

Source: http://cluborlov.blogspot.com/2008/02/five-stages-of-collapse.html

[Update May 2010: Two years after its publication, this article has been read by 54000 or so people, and is still being read by an average of 1500 people each month—on this site alone. Based on this steady level of interest, and on how effective of this taxonomy of collapse has proven to be in mapping out the events of the intervening two years, I have decided to give it a book-length treatment, which I will announce on this site once the publication date becomes known.]

Elizabeth Kübler-Ross defined the five stages of coming to terms with grief and tragedy as denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance, and applied it quite successfully to various forms of catastrophic personal loss, such as death of a loved one, sudden end to one’s career, and so forth. Several thinkers, notably James Howard Kunstler and, more recently John Michael Greer, have pointed out that the Kübler-Ross model is also quite terrifyingly accurate in reflecting the process by which society as a whole (or at least the informed and thinking parts of it) is reconciling itself to the inevitability of a discontinuous future, with our institutions and life support systems undermined by a combination of resource depletion, catastrophic climate change, and political impotence. But so far, little has been said specifically about the finer structure of these discontinuities. Instead, there is to be found a continuum of subjective judgments, ranging from “a severe and prolonged recession” (the prediction we most often read in the financial press), to Kunstler’s “Long Emergency,” to the ever-popular “Collapse of Western Civilization,” painted with an ever-wider brush-stroke.

For those of us who have already gone through all of the emotional stages of reconciling ourselves to the prospect of social and economic upheaval, it might be helpful to have a more precise terminology that goes beyond such emotionally charged phrases. Defining a taxonomy of collapses might prove to be more than just an intellectual exercise: based on our abilities and circumstances, some of us may be able to specifically plan for a certain stage of collapse as a temporary, or even permanent, stopping point. Even if society at the current stage of socioeconomic complexity will no longer be possible, and even if, as Tainter points in his “Collapse of Complex Societies,” there are circumstances in which collapse happens to be the correct adaptive response, it need not automatically cause a population crash, with the survivors disbanding into solitary, feral humans dispersed in the wilderness and subsisting miserably. Collapse can be conceived of as an orderly, organized retreat rather than a rout.

For instance, the collapse of the Soviet Union – our most recent and my personal favorite example of an imperial collapse – did not reach the point of political disintegration of the republics that made it up, although some of them (Georgia, Moldova) did lose some territory to separatist movements. And although most of the economy shut down for a time, many institutions, including the military, public utilities, and public transportation, continued to function throughout. And although there was much social dislocation and suffering, society as a whole did not collapse, because most of the population did not lose access to food, housing, medicine, or any of the other survival necessities. The command-and-control structure of the Soviet economy largely decoupled the necessities of daily life from any element of market psychology, associating them instead with physical flows of energy and physical access to resources. This situation, as I argue in my forthcoming book, Reinventing Collapse, allowed the Soviet population to inadvertently achieve a greater level of collapse-preparedness than is currently possible in the United States.

Having given a lot of thought to both the differences and the similarities between the two superpowers – the one that has collapsed already, and the one that is collapsing as I write this – I feel ready to attempt a bold conjecture, and define five stages of collapse, to serve as mental milestones as we gauge our own collapse-preparedness and see what can be done to improve it. Rather than tying each phase to a particular emotion, as in the Kübler-Ross model, the proposed taxonomy ties each of the five collapse stages to the breaching of a specific level of trust, or faith, in the status quo. Although each stage causes physical, observable changes in the environment, these can be gradual, while the mental flip is generally quite swift. It is something of a cultural universal that nobody (but a real fool) wants to be the last fool to believe in a lie.

Stages of Collapse

Stage 1: Financial collapse. Faith in “business as usual” is lost. The future is no longer assumed resemble the past in any way that allows risk to be assessed and financial assets to be guaranteed. Financial institutions become insolvent; savings are wiped out, and access to capital is lost.

Stage 2: Commercial collapse. Faith that “the market shall provide” is lost. Money is devalued and/or becomes scarce, commodities are hoarded, import and retail chains break down, and widespread shortages of survival necessities become the norm.

Stage 3: Political collapse. Faith that “the government will take care of you” is lost. As official attempts to mitigate widespread loss of access to commercial sources of survival necessities fail to make a difference, the political establishment loses legitimacy and relevance.

Stage 4: Social collapse. Faith that “your people will take care of you” is lost, as local social institutions, be they charities or other groups that rush in to fill the power vacuum run out of resources or fail through internal conflict.

Stage 5: Cultural collapse. Faith in the goodness of humanity is lost. People lose their capacity for “kindness, generosity, consideration, affection, honesty, hospitality, compassion, charity” (Turnbull, The Mountain People). Families disband and compete as individuals for scarce resources. The new motto becomes “May you die today so that I die tomorrow” (Solzhenitsyn, The Gulag Archipelago). There may even be some cannibalism.

Although many people imagine collapse to be a sort of elevator that goes to the sub-basement (our Stage 5) no matter which button you push, no such automatic mechanism can be discerned. Rather, driving us all to Stage 5 will require that a concerted effort be made at each of the intervening stages. That all the players seem poised to make just such an effort may give this collapse the form a classical tragedy – a conscious but inexorable march to perdition – rather than a farce (“Oops! Ah, here we are, Stage 5.” – “So, whom do we eat first?” – “Me! I am delicious!”) Let us sketch out this process.

Financial collapse, as we are are currently observing it, consists of two parts. One is that a part of the general population is forced to move, no longer able to afford the house they bought based on inflated assessments, forged income numbers, and foolish expectations of endless asset inflation. Since, technically, they should never have been allowed to buy these houses, and were only able to do so because of financial and political malfeasance, this is actually a healthy development. The second part consists of men in expensive suits tossing bundles of suddenly worthless paper up in the air, ripping out their remaining hair, and (some of us might uncharitably hope) setting themselves on fire on the steps of the Federal Reserve. They, to express it in their own vernacular, “fucked up,” and so this is also just as it should be.

The government response to this could be to offer some helpful homilies about “the wages of sin” and to open a few soup kitchens and flop houses in a variety of locations including Wall Street. The message would be: “You former debt addicts and gamblers, as you say, ‘fucked up,’ and so this will really hurt for a long time. We will never let you anywhere near big money again. Get yourselves over to the soup kitchen, and bring your own bowl, because we don’t do dishes.” This would result in a stable Stage 1 collapse – the Second Great Depression.

However, this is unlikely, because in the US the government happens to be debt addict and gambler number one. As individuals, we may have been as virtuous as we wished, but the government will have still run up exorbitant debts on our behalf. Every level of government, from local municipalities and authorities, which need the financial markets to finance their public works and public services, to the federal government, which relies on foreign investment to finance its endless wars, is addicted to public debt. They know they cannot stop borrowing, and so they will do anything they can to keep the game going for as long as possible.

About the only thing the government currently seems it fit to do is extend further credit to those in trouble, by setting interest rates at far below inflation, by accepting worthless bits of paper as collateral and by pumping money into insolvent financial institutions. This has the effect of diluting the dollar, further undermining its value, and will, in due course, lead to hyperinflation, which is bad enough in any economy, but is especially serious for one dominated by imports. As imports dry up and the associated parts of the economy shut down, we pass Stage 2: Commercial Collapse.

As businesses shut down, storefronts are boarded up and the population is left largely penniless and dependent on FEMA and charity for survival, the government may consider what to do next. It could, for example, repatriate all foreign troops and set them to work on public works projects designed to directly help the population. It could promote local economic self-sufficiency, by establishing community-supported agriculture programs, erecting renewable energy systems, and organizing and training local self-defence forces to maintain law and order. The Army Corps of Engineers could be ordered to bulldoze buildings erected on former farmland around city centers, return the land to cultivation, and to construct high-density solar-heated housing in urban centers to resettle those who are displaced. In the interim, it could reduce homelessness by imposing a steep tax on vacant residential properties and funneling the proceeds into rent subsidies for the indigent. With plenty of luck, such measures may be able to reverse the trend, eventually providing for a restoration of pre-Stage 2 conditions.

This may or may not be a good plan, but in any case it is rather unrealistic, because the United States, being so deeply in debt, will be forced to accede to the wishes of its foreign creditors, who own a lot of national assets (land, buildings, and businesses) and who would rather see a dependent American population slaving away working off their debt than a self-sufficient one, conveniently forgetting that they have mortgaged their children’s futures to pay for military fiascos, big houses, big cars, and flat-screen television sets. Thus, a much more likely scenario is that the federal government (knowing who butters their bread) will remain subservient to foreign financial interests. It will impose austerity conditions, maintain law and order through draconian means, and aide in the construction of foreign-owned factory towns and plantations. As people start to think that having a government may not be such a good idea, conditions become ripe for Stage 3.

If Stage 1 collapse can be observed by watching television, observing Stage 2 might require a hike or a bicycle ride to the nearest population center, while Stage 3 collapse is more than likely to be visible directly through one’s own living-room window, which may or may not still have glass in it. After a significant amount of bloodletting, much of the country becomes a no-go zone for the remaining authorities. Foreign creditors decide that their debts might not be repaid after all, cut their losses and depart in haste. The rest of the world decides to act as if there is no such place as The United States – because “nobody goes there any more.” So as not to lose out on the entertainment value, the foreign press still prints sporadic fables about Americans who eat their young, much as they did about Russia following the Soviet collapse. A few brave American expatriates who still come back to visit bring back amazing stories of a different kind, but everyone considers them eccentric and perhaps a little bit crazy.

Stage 3 collapse can sometimes be avoided by the timely introduction of international peacekeepers and through the efforts of international humanitarian NGOs. In the aftermath of a Stage 2 collapse, domestic authorities are highly unlikely to have either the resources or the legitimacy, or even the will, to arrest the collapse dynamic and reconstitute themselves in a way that the population would accept.

As stage 3 collapse runs its course, the power vacuum left by the now defunct fedral, state and local government is filled by a variety of new power structures. Remnants of former law enforcement and military, urban gangs, ethnic mafias, religious cults and wealthy property owners all attempt to build their little empires on the ruins of the big one, fighting each other over territory and access to resources. This is the age of Big Men: charismatic leaders, rabble-rousers, ruthless Macchiavelian princes and war lords. In the luckier places, they find it to their common advantage to pool their resources and amalgamate into some sort of legitimate local government, while in the rest their jostling for power leads to a spiral of conflict and open war.

Stage 4 collapse occurs when society becomes so disordered and impoverished that it can no longer support the Big Men, who become smaller and smaller, and eventually fade from view. Society fragments into extended families and small tribes of a dozen or so families, who find it advantageous to band together for mutual support and defense. This is the form of society that has existed over some 98.5% of humanity’s existence as a biological species, and can be said to be the bedrock of human existence. Humans can exist at this level of organization for thousands, perhaps millions of years. Most mammalian species go extinct after just a few million years, but, for all we know, Homo Sapiens still have a million or two left.

If pre-collapse society is too atomized, alienated and individualistic to form cohesive extended families and tribes, or if its physical environment becomes so disordered and impoverished that hunger and starvation become widespread, then Stage 5 collapse becomes likely. At this stage, a simpler biological imperative takes over, to preserve the life of the breeding couples. Families disband, the old are abandoned to their own devices, and children are only cared for up to age 3. All social unity is destroyed, and even the couples may disband for a time, preferring to forage on their own and refusing to share food. This is the state of society described by the anthropologist Colin Turnbull in his book The Mountain People. If society prior to Stage 5 collapse can be said to be the historical norm for humans, Stage 5 collapse brings humanity to the verge of physical extinction.

As we can easily imagine, the default is cascaded failure: each stage of collapse can easily lead to the next, perhaps even overlapping it. In Russia, the process was arrested just past Stage 3: there was considerable trouble with ethnic mafias and even some warlordism, but government authority won out in the end. In my other writings, I go into a lot of detail in describing the exact conditions that inadvertently made Russian society relatively collapse-proof. Here, I will simply say that these ingredients are not currently present in the United States.

While attempting to arrest collapse at Stage 1 and Stage 2 would probably be a dangerous waste of energy, it is probably worth everyone’s while to dig in their heels at Stage 3, definitely at Stage 4, and it is quite simply a matter of physical survival to avoid Stage 5. In certain localities – those with high population densities, as well as those that contain dangerous nuclear and industrial installations – avoiding Stage 3 collapse is rather important, to the point of inviting foreign troops and governments in to maintain order and avoid disasters. Other localities may be able to prosper indefinitely at Stage 3, and even the most impoverished environments may be able to support a sparse population subsisting indefinitely at Stage 4.

Although it is possible to prepare directly for surviving Stage 5, this seems like an altogether demoralizing thing to attempt. Preparing to survive Stages 3 and 4 may seem somewhat more reasonable, while explicitly aiming for Stage 3 may be reasonable if you plan to become one of the Big Men. Be that as it may, I must leave such preparations as an exercise for the reader. My hope is that these definitions of specific stages of collapse will enable a more specific and fruitful discussion than the one currently dominated by such vague and ultimately nonsensical terms as “the collapse of Western civilization.”

 


A People’s Uprising Against the Empire

Source: http://mises.org/daily/5017/A-Peoples-Uprising-Against-the-Empire

Mises Daily: Tuesday, February 01, 2011 by 

 

Those of the young generation, people too young to remember the collapse of Soviet bloc and other socialist states in 1989 and 1990, are fortunate to be living through another thrilling example of a seemingly impenetrable state edifice reduced to impotence when faced with crowds demanding freedom, peace, and justice.

There is surely no greater event than this. To see it instills in us a sense of hope that the longing for freedom that beats in the heart of every human being can be realized in our time.

This is why all young people should pay close attention to what is happening in Egypt — to the protests against the regime of Hosni Mubarak as well as the pathetic response coming from his imperial partner, the United States, which has given him many billions in military and secret-police aid to keep him in power.

The United States is in much the same situation today as the Soviet Union was in 1989, as a series of socialist dominoes toppled. Poland, Romania, Hungary, East Germany, Bulgaria, and Czechoslovakia all experienced dramatic meltdowns, while the Soviet regime, supportive of these systems since the end of the Second World War, sat by helplessly and watched. Leaders made vague statements about the need for peaceful transitions and elections, while the people on the ground completely ignored them.

What has sparked the uprising? There are economic considerations, of course. A good rate of inflation in Egypt is considered to be 10 percent, and currency depreciation works as a massive punishment against savings and capital accumulation. Unemployment is high — about the same rate as the United States’ — but it is even higher for young people who are worried about the future.

Economic growth has been much better in the last decades, thanks to economic reforms, but this tendency (as in the old Soviet bloc) has only worked to create rising expectations and more demands for freedom. It remains a fact that nearly half the population lives in terrifying poverty.

The core of the problem, it appears, relates to civil liberties and the very old-fashioned conviction that the country is ruled by a tyrant who must go. Mubarak tolerates no challenges to his martial-law rule. There are tens of thousands of political prisoners in the country, and it is easy to get arrested and tortured simply by calling the dictator names. The press is censored, opposition groups are suppressed, and corruption runs rampant. Mubarak’s will to power has known no bounds: he chooses all the country’s elites based solely on personal loyalty to himself.

Mubarak has ruled for 30 years, and yes, there have been elections every 6 years, but these are widely seen as being only for show. Opposition candidates end up prosecuted for a variety of invented crimes. Democracy in Egypt is merely a slogan for one-party rule. And this is striking: the main excuse for his martial law is one that is all too familiar to Americans — the war on terror (and never mind the terror dispensed by the warriors themselves).

Probably a more substantive issue concerns the digital revolution and the opening up of the entire world through the Internet — a species of the very thing that the United States cited as the reason for the anti-Soviet uprisings of the late 1980s and early ’90s. Many young people in Egypt are as connected to the world through social media as American teenagers, and they enjoy access to the sights and sounds of the modernity that the regime so opposes.

To understand what is driving the protests, consider the date that they began: National Police Day on January 25. This holiday was created by Mubarak only in 2009. Talk about misjudging the situation! And sure enough, the government’s response was to jam nearly all Internet communications and shut down all cell-phone service on the day of the planned protest. But it didn’t work: Thanks to what is now being called “hacktivism,” the revolution is being broadcast around the world through Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube, even as Wikipedia is being updated minute by minute. And the Al Jazeera English live feed has, as usual, put the biased US media to shame.

Meanwhile, official government voices in the United States have been pathetically behind the times. Joe Biden and Hillary Clinton have been refusing to describe Mubarak as a dictator and lamely urging a transition to an election — run and ruled over by the Mubarak regime. The protest leadership immediately saw that line for what it was and rejected it outright. It is unbearably obvious that the United States is nearly alone in more-or-less supporting Mubarak, but that is exactly what you would expect of the imperial backer of the despot.

What are the protestors’ demands? It is not complicated. As in 1989, the one demand is that the dictator go. This makes complete sense and is the only solution that accords with what is right and just. This and only this will establish the basis for a transition to anything. What follows after that is really something that has to be worked out, not by the CIA, but by the Egyptian people, who have had their voices muzzled for far too long.

What the uprisings underscore is a fundamental reality that the world too often forgets. It is at the core of the relationship between any government and any people, in all times and all places. The people far outnumber the government, and for that reason — and even when the government is heavily armed — every government must depend on some degree of consent to continue its rule. If the whole of a people rise up and say no, the bureaucrats and even the police are powerless. This is the great secret of government that is mostly ignored until revolution day arrives.

More than the anti-Soviet protests of the late 1980s, the Egyptian uprisings reveal what might eventually come home to the American empire itself. Under the right conditions and at the right time, consciousness might dawn right here at home. It could happen here for the same reason it could happen anywhere.

Government knows this, and hence its accumulation of weaponry and relentless propaganda. The difficulty for the state comes when its will to power generates what Thomas Jefferson called “a long train of abuses” that create a burning desire within people to rise up and demand freedom. Because, after all, it is the right of a people — is it not? — to alter and abolish the form of government under which they are forced to live.

Llewellyn H. Rockwell Jr. is chairman of the Ludwig von Mises Institute in Auburn, Alabama, editor of LewRockwell.com, and author of The Left, the Right, and the State. Send him mail. See Llewellyn H. Rockwell Jr.’s article archives.

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Kept Until Now So You Wouldn’t Barf Up Your Turkey and Stuffing Over Thanksgiving

The Most Cynical and Hypocritical Speech Ever Delivered

by Thomas J. DiLorenzo
by Thomas J. DiLorenzo
Recently by Thomas DiLorenzo: The Real Jefferson

Over the Thanksgiving holiday (decreed by Lincoln in 1863) one neocon Tabloid, National Review, reprinted Lincoln’s October 3, 1863 proclamation, highlighting Abe’s cynical reference to “the Most High God . . .” Another neocon Tabloid, The American Spectator, published the typical sappy, a-historical, fact-free, rhetorical mumbo jumbo about “Father Abraham” that Harry Jaffa and his fellow Lincoln cultists are known for.

The references to God in Lincoln’s Thanksgiving proclamation, like all other such references in his political speeches, are breathtakingly cynical because of the fact that Lincoln never became a Christian (according to his wife and his closest friend and law partner, William Herndon); he never joined a church; rarely ever stepped foot into one; as a young man wrote an entire book that disputed Scripture; and was famous for his vulgar stories and language. But he studied the Bible as a political tool, just as today’s politicians study opinion polls.

Prior to 1863 Lincoln’s references to God and the Bible in his political speeches were mostly catch phrases and buzz words (“a house divided cannot stand”). But as more and more fellow American citizens were murdered by the thousands by his army, and as the war crimes mounted, Abe stepped up his Biblical lingo. By the time of his second inaugural he wrote a speech in which he absolved himself of all blame for the war (“the war [just] came,” he said), blaming the whole bloody mess on God. Presuming to know what was in the mind of God, he theorized that the Lord was punishing all Americans, North and South, for the sin of slavery. He did not theorize on why God would not also punish the British, French, Spanish, and others who were responsible for bringing 95% of all the slaves to the Western Hemisphere. In other words, his Biblical language was always a diversion and a cover-up for the war crimes against American civilians (among other atrocities) that he was micromanaging.

The first sentence of Lincoln’s Thanksgiving proclamation is a real howler. The year 1863, he said, “has been filled with the blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies.” What? Healthful skies?! As of the fall of 1863 there had been several hundred thousand battlefield casualties, including thousands of men in both armies who died of yellow fever and other dreaded diseases. There were more than 50,000 casualties in the Battle of Gettysburg alone, just three months earlier.

In the second sentence, Lincoln the non-Christian claimed that “we” are “prone to forget” that all of those “healthful skies” come from “the ever watchful providence of Almighty God.” Speak for yourself, Abe!

This is followed by another howler, claiming that “peace has been preserved with all nations.” He apparently forgot about the Confederate States of America that he was waging total war against.

It gets worse (and funnier). The next thing he says is that “order has been maintained.” Stalin said the same thing about the Soviet Union. By that time Lincoln had imprisoned thousands of Northern political dissenters without due process since he illegally suspended the writ of Habeas Corpus. He had shut down hundreds of “unorderly” opposition newspapers, and deported poor old Congressman Clement Vallandigham of Dayton, Ohio, his most outspoken critic in Congress.

As Dean Sprague wrote in Freedom Under Lincoln (p. 299), under Lincoln’s “policy of oppression,” the “entire judicial system was set aside” as “the laws were silent, indictments were not found, testimony was not taken, judges did not sit, juries were not impaneled, convictions were not obtained and sentences were not pronounced. The Anglo-Saxon concept of due process, perhaps the greatest political triumph of the ages and the best guardian of freedom, was abandoned.”

Three months earlier there had been draft riots in New York City that one could hardly describe as “orderly.” An eye witness to the riots was Colonel Arthur Fremantle of the British Army, who wrote the following about the New York City draft riots in his book, Three Months in the Southern States (p. 302):

The reports of outrages, hangings, and murder, were now most alarming, the terror and anxiety were universal. All shops were shut; all carriages and omnibuses had ceased running. No colored man or woman was visible or safe in the streets or even in his own dwelling. Telegraphs were cut, and railroad tracks torn up.

Lincolnian “order” was restored when Abe sent 15,000 troops to New York from the just-concluded Battle of Gettysburg. The troops fired indiscriminately into the draft protesters, killing hundreds, more likely thousands, of them according to Iver Bernstein, author of The New York City Draft Riots. (This scene was portrayed in the movie Gangs of New York, where Bernstein worked as an historical consultant to director Martin Scorcese).

But let’s not let historical facts get in our way. Let’s follow the neocon lead and swoon and weep and get chills up our legs over Abe’s Big Lie that “harmony has prevailed everywhere except in the theatre of military conflict.”

The notion that there was “harmony” and “unity” in the Northern states during the war is one of the most outrageous lies in American history. Historian Ella Lonn described how Lincoln created “harmony” within the U.S. Army in the face of massive desertions by literally hundreds of thousands of Northern men in her book, Desertion During the Civil War. Draftees “were held like veritable prisoners” and Lincoln’s government “had no compunctions about shooting or hanging deserters,” wrote Lonn. The murder of deserters achieved Nazi-like efficiency: “A gallows and shooting ground were provided in each corps and scarcely a Friday passed during the winter of 1863–64 that some wretched deserter did not suffer the death penalty in the Army of the Potomac. . . . The death penalty was so unsparingly used that executions were almost daily occurrences. . .” The “method of execution” was “generally shooting but hanging seems to have been used occasionally.”

The Thanksgiving speech gets even worse. The very next uttering of Abe’s is that “the laws have been respected and obeyed.” Well, not by Abraham Lincoln, certainly. Even his own attorney general, Robert Bates, stated that his suspension of Habeas Corpus was illegal and unconstitutional, as was the suppression of free speech throughout the North. West Virginia was illegally carved out of Virginia to form a new slave state as part of the union. And where in the Constitution is the president permitted to order soldiers to imprison and deport an opposition member of Congress without any due process? Or rig national elections and imprison duly-elected members of the Maryland state assembly without due process? Doesn’t the Constitution require presidents to see to it that the states have republican forms of government?

Indeed, Lincoln’s invasion of the Southern states was the very definition of treason under the U.S. Constitution. Article 3, Section 3 proclaims that: “Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying war against them, or adhering to theirEnemies, giving them Aid and Comfort” (emphasis added). Treason under the U.S. Constitution consists “only” in waging war against “them,” namely, the free, independent and sovereign states, plural. Lincoln redefined treason to mean any criticism by anyone of him or his administration. In fact, he even said that a man who stands by and says nothing while the war was being discussed was guilty of “treason.”

Lincoln also violated international law and his own military code by intentionally waging war on American civilians for four years, killing more than 50,000 of them according to historian Jeffrey Rogers Hummel. Even pro-Sherman biographer Lee Kennett wrote in his book, Marching Through Georgia (p. 286), that “had the Confederates somehow won, had their victory put them in position to bring their chief opponents before some sort of tribunal, they would have found themselves justified (as victors generally do) in stringing up President Lincoln and the entire Union high command for violation of the laws of war, specifically for waging war against noncombatants.”

All the “great things” that had happened since he became president, said Abe, were “the gracious gifts of the Most High God . . .” Therefore, he said, “we” should celebrate as “the whole American People” to give thanks to God with a national holiday. This was another very large contradiction: Lincoln never admitted that secession was legal, therefore, he always considered Southerners to be a part of “the whole American people” for political purposes. It is doubtful that a single Southerner, in 1863, would have heeded Abe’s advice and given thanks for all that he had done for them.

Lincoln concluded his Thanksgiving propaganda speech with more religious lingo, thanking the Lord for “the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquility,” and, get this – Union. The Union – always spelled with a capital “U” – was not just a practical political arrangement created by the founding generation mostly for foreign policy purposes, as Thomas Jefferson said it was. It was supposedly divine, the work of God. Lincoln the non-Christian knew this for sure. It’s what created The Divine Right of Lincoln, similar to The Divine Right of Kings during the Middle Ages.

This deification of the state echoed the words of the fanatical New England Unitarian preacher Henry W. Bellows, who worked in the Lincoln administration as its Sanitary Commissioner and whose son, Russell, was Robert Todd Lincoln’s Harvard classmate and best friend. (Lincoln’s son Robert spent the war years “fighting” for good grades at Harvard). Bellows authored a creepy, totalitarian-sounding book in 1863 entitled Unconditional Loyalty which declared that “the state is indeed divine, as being the great incarnation of a nation’s rights, privileges, honor and life” itself.” Moreover, “the first and most sacred duty of loyal citizens” was “to rally round the president – without question or dispute.”

In his new book, The Fiery Trial: Abraham Lincoln and Slavery (p. 265), Lincoln cultist Eric Foner informs us that “it is not surprising that Lincoln seemed to share this outlook.” This “outlook” would have caused George Washington to reach for his sword and lead another Revolution against another despotic and dictatorial regime.

 

November 30, 2010

Thomas J. DiLorenzo [send him mailis professor of economics at Loyola College in Maryland and the author of The Real Lincoln; Lincoln Unmasked: What You’re Not Supposed To Know about Dishonest Abe and How Capitalism Saved America.His latest book is Hamilton’s Curse: How Jefferson’s Archenemy Betrayed the American Revolution – And What It Means for America Today.

Copyright © 2010 by LewRockwell.com. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is gladly granted, provided full credit is given.

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Thomas DiLorenzo Archives at Mises.org


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The Most Revolutionary Act: Memoir of an American Refugee

* Dr. Stuart Jean Bramhill wrote a comment on one of my recent posts. I decided to promote her book here as her story is very telling. Her struggles with American Intelligence are frightening and should give all of us pause. This country has been taken over by liars, thieves and thugs. At some point the American people will come to see it. Hopefully, it will not be too late. What follows is a review from Amazon. I am providing links to there as well as to her publishers’ site if you prefer to purchase direct or want an e-book version. Please purchase her book if these types of things interests you at all . Whether you agree with her politics is irrelevant since we are supposed to live in a free country where one is free to choose one’s political and religious beliefs. Her experiences should awaken us all that we need to act. (E) Clicking on the image will take you to the Amazon page. *

Follow this link if you prefer the e-book or want to buy directly from the publisher: Strategic Publishing Group Her is the link to her blog: http://stuartbramhall.aegauthorblogs.com/

*

Finally here is a review from Amazon:

*

A Psychiatrist Searches for Sanity in a Crazy World,

August 12, 2010

By Michael David Morrissey (Germany)
This review is from: The Most Revolutionary Act: Memoir of an American Refugee (Paperback)

This is a frightening book. Much of it reads like a thriller, but unfortunately it is a true story. Dr. Stuart Jeanne Bramhill, a woman (despite the unusual first name) and a psychiatrist, describes her 15-year long mental, emotional and physical ordeal resulting from her involvement in leftist activist politics in Seattle, Washington. Beginning in 1986, says Bramhall, “for some unknown reason, some faceless higher-up in one of the eleven federal agencies that spy on American citizens decided I posed a threat to national security,” and from then on she was subjected to phone harassment, wiretaps, break-ins, and even attempts on her life. Since she was never able to prove any of this (and how does one prove it?), she was also confronted with the disbelief of her own professional colleagues, who were quick to diagnose her as “psychotic” and gave her the choice of losing her medical license or spending a week in a locked ward at a mental hospital for observation. She chose the latter, though she continued to be misdiagnosed and over-medicated, which exacerbated her mental torment and had serious physical side-effects that lasted for years afterward. Bramhall learned the hard way that her fellow medical professionals were the last people in the world she could be honest with about her feelings of persecution: “The moment I mentioned the CIA, my psychiatrist decided I was psychotic and refused to listen anything else I said… Nelson’s erroneous diagnosis stemmed from pure political naiveté. He had no reason to come in contact with political or union activists, unemployed whistleblowers or the low-income street people that the police, and, I believed, U.S. intelligence, recruited as informants. Nevertheless, I had no confidence in any of my colleagues to objectively assess my mental state. I practiced in a totally different world from other Seattle psychiatrists, who automatically turned away patients who couldn’t afford their one hundred dollar fee.” Bramhall was never more than a “lukewarm radical”: “I was a very late bloomer politically. Despite my early disenchantment with the “establishment,” as we called it in the sixties and seventies, it never occurred to me to blame political factors for my chronic sense of loneliness, alienation, and unmet emotional and social needs.” At thirty-five, she “fell into Marxism almost by accident” when a medical colleague invited her to join CISPES (Committee in Solidarity with the People of El Salvador, formed in 1981 to protest Reagan’s covert war against El Salvador). Marxism helped her “make sense for the first time of a political system riddled with contradictions,” but she “never accepted the need for violent revolution to overthrow capitalism.” This would have been enough, I think, to have alienated her from most of her colleagues, since it must be as almost as hard to be a “Marxist” psychiatrist in the U.S. as it was to a “capitalist” one in the former Soviet Union, where political deviance was routinely equated with psychosis. But Bramhall crossed a number of other tripwires in her efforts to combine political activism with her profession, the most conspicuous one being the color line. As a white woman who actively pursued her profession, as well as social and political associations, in the African American community, she became involved with other activists whose motivations, she came to suspect, were not as innocent or transparent as her own. One of her early acquaintances, a former Black Panther called Jabari Sisulu, put it succinctly: “White professionals who fraternize with black radicals are at much greater risk than I am.” Bramhall’s story is testimony to the truth of this statement. Over the years, as she continued to participate in local activist projects like the effort to turn an abandoned school building in Seattle into an African American museum and cultural center, Bramhall broadened her political consciousness by reading about the assassination of the Kennedys and Martin Luther King, Cointelpro, AIDS, and more recently, 9/11 — in short, by delving into the immense body of literature dealing with the facts and evidence about such topics that continues to be systematically suppressed by the mainstream press and dismissed as “conspiracy theory” but which is now readily accessible on the internet. At some points, her activities at the “micro” level intersected, perhaps with consequences, with the “macro” level (my terms), such as her association with Edna Laidlow, who claimed to be the lover of the “umbrella man” at Dealey Plaza who supposedly gave the signal to begin the shooting of JFK. She also suspects that her effort to publicize an ulcer drug called “Tagomet” [sic, presumably Tagamet] as a treatment for AIDS may have triggered a covert response. The reader, like Bramhall herself, waits in vain for any resolution of the question of who was harassing her and why. This is hardly surprising, since none of the issues at the “macro” level have been resolved either. Despite the ever-increasing mountain of evidence of government involvement in multitudinous conspiracies (“plans by more than one person to do bad things”) against “the people,” both domestic and foreign, the steadfast response of both government and mainstream press, which are in this respect identical, remains the same. It is not denial — which would require facts and arguments — but silence. Thus Bramhall leaves us, at the end of the book in 2002, having emigrated to New Zealand in hope of starting a new life at a healthy distance from the “insidious pseudo-culture” of the U.S. public relations industry and “stranglehold of the U.S. military and U.S. intelligence.” I wish her luck, and as an longtime ex-pat myself I can say that she made a rational decision. I too am a kind of “American Refugee,” as Bramhall subtitles her memoir. Fortunately, I never experienced the kind of personal harassment she did, but reading her book gives me a strong sense of “there but for fortune.” I could have easily gone the way of Stuart Bramhall, just as I could have ended up in Vietnam or (more likely) in Canada fleeing the draft. But I got lucky. First of all, I was lucky enough to realize early on that the Vietnam war was insane, and secondly, I found a psychiatrist who shared my view. (He called it a “mass neurosis,” which I thought a gross understatement, but it served my purpose of escaping the draft.) I did not leave the U.S. for political reasons, however. I left, in 1977, because even armed with a Ph.D. (in linguistics), I couldn’t get a decent job. So I guess I was an economic “refugee.” (Part of Bramhall’s motive for emigrating was also economic, her medical practice having suffered under cutbacks in Medicare and Medicaid in the Reagan, Bush, and Clinton administrations.) I was, obviously, opposed to the Vietnam war, but I did not become “radicalized” until much later, in 1988, when I was older than Bramhall was when she turned to Marxism, so I too was a late bloomer, politically. The catalyst for me was, I am almost ashamed to say, a TV program: Nigel Turner’s documentary about the assassination of President Kennedy (The Men Who Killed Kennedy). I saw this in Germany, after I had been living here for almost 11 years. This was the major turning point for me, but it all happened in my head. In Bramhall’s case, despite the opinion of her bourgeois colleagues, I don’t think it was in her head. Maybe some of it was, but her story is much too detailed to be dismissed as paranoia. So the irony of our two stories is complete. On the one hand, we have a psychiatrist who is persecuted for political reasons and falsely judged by her colleagues to be insane. On the other hand we have a linguist who opposes an insane war and is correctly judged by a “renegade” psychiatrist (as I’m sure his colleagues would have described him in those days) to be sane and therefore unfit to “serve.” Both of us end up leaving the country. But not everyone can leave. Vietnam did not end. It’s here again under a different name: Afghanistan/Iraq. In fact, things are much worse now, much more insane, than they were in the sixties. There was at least some attempt to lie convincingly about the reasons for the Vietnam war. The “communist threat” was more convincing than the the blatant lies about non-existent weapons of mass destruction, retaliation for 9/11, and bringing “freedom and democracy” to those unfortunate countries. A very large portion of the population, probably close to one half, disbelieves the government’s story of 9/11, and a clear majority does not support the ongoing war (read “military engagement”). There is a huge disjuncture between what people think and what the government and the mainstream media tell them. If societies were people, the U.S. would have to be locked up with the criminally insane. No person could remain sane harboring so many violently conflicting ideas. Societies are not people, but people do have to live in this insane society. How do they do it? I think there are three alternatives: 1) denial, 2) acceptance, and 3) fighting back. 1) and 2) are themselves psychotic states. How can you deny or accept insanity without becoming part of it? 3) is the only sane, reasonable and honorable alternative. This is what Bramhall did, and what many of us try to do, each in our own way. It is wrong to see her story as negative or her struggle as futile. It is part of the ongoing struggle. P.S. Dr. Bramhall mentions me as the “translator” of AIDS researcher Jakob Segal, but in fact I only proofread the English edition of his book “AIDS Can Be Conquered” (Verlag Neuer Weg, 2001; “AIDS Ist Besiegbar,” 1995). I did translate a couple of shorter pieces, which are accessible on my homepage (mdmorrissey.info) and in my book “Looking for the Enemy.” The latter and my more recent book “The Transparent Conspiracy” (on 9/11) are available on Amazon.com. *

 

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Is America On the Verge of a Soviet-Style Collapse? Ron Paul Says Yes, and That’s a Good Thing

 

Ron Paul at the 2007 National Right to Life Co...

Image via Wikipedia

 

by Frances Martel
Mediaite

Recently by Ron Paul: Demagoguing the Mosque

Libertarian icon and perennial FBN’s Freedom Watch guest Rep. Ron Paul visited the program once again to talk pleasantries with host Judge Andrew Napolitano– namely, the imminent threat of revolution and Soviet-style collapse. Why is Rep. Paul so happy about these things? They will force us to adhere to the Constitution!

READ MORE + VIDEO


The Kidnapping of Cheyenne Irish


Libertarian Standard

by William N. Grigg on October 9, 2010 @ 9:54 pm 

 

The Regime's youngest political prisoner.

 

 

“Happy birthday. You’re property of the State.”

This is the message that was given to Cheyenne Irish, the newborn daughter of New Hampshire residents Jonathan Irish and Stephanie Taylor, who was literally stolen from her parents hours after her birth on October 6.

While there are reportedly some “very serious” criminal allegations involved in this matter, the focal point of the case should be this: Among the reasons cited by New Hampshire’s child “protection” directorate as supposed justification for the seizure of Cheyenne was the fact that “Mr. Irish associated with a militia known as the, [sic] `Oath Keepers,’ and had purchased several different types of weapons including a rifle, handgun and taser.”

“Whether or not the charges against Mr. Irish are true, this action is entirely unconstitutional and represents a very dangerous precedent,” Oath Keepers founder Stewart Rhodes, a practicing defense attorney, pointed out to Pro Libertate.  “Using this man’s political views and alleged affiliations to define parental suitability in any way is entirely illegitimate, and a direct threat to the rights of parents who are political activists of any kind.”

This is hardly the first time law enforcement officials and social workers have cited “political extremism” to justify severe and extra-constitutional sanctions against people who have not been convicted of an actual crime.

Just a few months ago, police in Salem County, Massachusetts arrested an innocent man named Gregory Girard on palpably fraudulent criminal charges because his wife — acting as a dutiful collectivist drone — reported that he had developed “extremist” political views.

Those unsanctioned opinions, coupled with legal firearms purchases, led to Girard’s arrest and detention as a “danger to the community” — but he was never formally charged or prosecuted. He was simply taken into Soviet-style administrative detention while the local members of Lavrenti Beria’s fraternity — that is, the county prosecutor and judge — tried to devise a criminal charge to justify his imprisonment.

 

 

Political Prisoner Gregory Girard

 

 

After Girard spent four months in jail without a criminal charge,  his case was eventually “dismissed without a finding.” He was designated a “ward of the court,” compelled to undergo routine psychiatric evaluation and treatment, and notified that he could be arrested and subjected to indefinite detention at any time such action was deemed suitable by his persecutors.

This was done to Girard because he was classified to be what law enforcement organs in the Soviet Union called a “socially dangerous person.” This same calculus appears to have been used to justify the government kidnapping of Cheyenne Irish — a much graver crime, given that it involved not merely the seizure of a man’s means of self-defense, but of his newborn child.

Cheyenne “wasn’t even 16 hours old when they came in and stole her from us,” reports her father Jonathan. The head of security at Concord Hospital “had a nurse come in while Cheyenne was sleeping [who] lied to us that they just wanted to take her to the nursery to see the doctor to be discharged. Even though I said NO to have the doctor come in the room they took her anyway…. I followed [them] out to the nursery because I didn’t want my daughter out of my sight, as we were walking out I saw several gentlemen wearing suits with detective badges and my gut just started wrenching.”

“They rushed her into the nursery and locked her in,” Jonathan continues. “[W]hile I was talking to one of the other nurses the head of security comes up behind me, grabs my arm and starts walking me down the hall saying `you need to keep an open mind, you need to just hear them out’ and he just kept repeating himself ignoring my questions as to who ‘they’ were.”

 

 

Cheyenne, shortly before her abduction.

 

 

How typical of an agent of government aggression to be accusing the victim of “intolerance” even as the crime is in progress. This little touch is a variation on the police tactic of bellowing “Stop resisting!” to a helpless victim at the bottom of a thugswarm.

“When he got me in Stephanie’s hospital room and sat me down on the couch the police department and DCYF [Division of Children, Youth and Family services — that is, the child-snatcher apparat] showed up. Three uniformed patrol officers and 3-4 detectives with 2 DCYF social workers walked in the room…. [One] of the patrolmen asked if he could pat me down. I said NO, not giving my consent…. The officer grabbed my wrist, bent it behind my back and stood me up and proceeded to pat me down anyway.”

After seizing a pocketknife and cigarette lighter and asking if Jonathan had “any other weapons” — officer safety uber alles, you know — the childnappers “gave us a fabricated affidavit … telling us they were taking custody of our newborn daughter.”

Jonathan was then informed that he would be shadowed, Stasi-style, by a “security officer.” When contacted by Pro Libertate at approximately 3:45 MST on October 8, Mr. Irish was being forced to leave the Concord Hospital parking lot pursuant to a “notice” he had been sent by the local police.

“I received a phone call a while ago telling me to go to a website” — that is, a Facebook page — “where a group of people had taken it on themselves to organize a protest and rally,” Irish recounted to Pro Libertate. “I was then sent a document by the Concord Police that said I wouldn’t be allowed to go inside the hospital, or even be in the parking lot, unless it involved a medical emergency, otherwise it would be considered ‘criminal trespass.’”

Irish refers to Cheyenne’s mother, Stephanie Taylor, as his fiancee. The affidavit mentions that the couple had been under DCYF scrutiny “for approximately 21 months … in a case involving two children of Stephanie Taylor; neglect petitions were filed on January 7, 2009 and a Termination of Parental Rights trial was recently concluded as to these two children….”

For reasons not specified in the document, Irish was “ordered to attend Ending the Violence with Scott Hampton; however, to date, has not completed this program.” (Remember this point; we’ll return to it anon.) The police complain that they have “responded to multiple calls” involving Irish and firearms, which resulted in “a pending charge for possession of a concealed weapon without a permit.” It was in the context of that trivial paperwork matter that the affidavit mentioned Irish’s “association” with the Oath Keepers, which was misrepresented in the affidavit as a “militia.”

The Oath Keepers is an organization of current and retired law enforcement and military personnel who have pledged not to carry out patently unconstitutional orders. The group’s founder, Stewart Rhodes, emphasizes that it encourages lawful, peaceful non-cooperation, rather than armed insurrection, as a way of interposing against the all-encompassing criminal assault by the Regime against individual rights.

Had an Oath Keeper been present at Concord Hospital on October 6, he would have refused to be party to the criminal abduction of Cheyenne Irish.

The “association” referred to in that document consists of occasional involvement by Irish and his fiancee in an on-line discussion group involving the Oath Keepers. Mentioning this tenuous connection served the immediate interests of the child abduction bureaucracy, since it created a caricature of the father as a potentially dangerous “extremist.” But it also serves the long-term interest of the Homeland Security bureaucracy by using Jonathan Irish as an indispensable defendant in a potentially precedent-setting case.

“I know practically nothing about Jonathan Irish,” Stewart Rhodes of the Oath Keepers told Pro Libertate. “Whatever we learn about his problems, the real question is this: Why was such prominent mention made of his political beliefs and supposed affiliations?”

If Mr. Irish is a legitimate criminal suspect — as opposed to a troubled parent who is considered a political criminal — why wasn’t he taken into custody? Why was  he left relatively free, while his newborn daughter was wrenched from her mother and father through deliberate deception and the threat of lethal force?

The Oath Keepers have been targeted by the so-called Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), an immensely profitable leftist “watchdog” group run by the degenerate fraud named Morris Dees. Through an illicit relationship with law enforcement agencies, both federal and local, the SPLC has become deeply involved in an effort to indoctrinate police (as well as educators and social workers) regarding the ubiquitous menace of “anti-government extremism.” Rhodes points out that the SPLC, a nominally private group that is unaccountable to the public, is a member of the “Homeland Security Advisory Council” (HSAC) which published a report on domestic “radicalization” and “extremism” last Spring.

A work in progress, the HSAC describes itself as striving to prevent  “violent crime that is motivated by extreme ideological beliefs” through “threat mitigation” and “community policing.” That last term of art came into vogue during the early part of Bill Clinton’s first term: Washington began to lavish funding on states and municipalities for the purpose of integrating the police with the social services bureaucracy, the better to create a seamless web from which no family could escape.

 

 

"Community policing"; below, more of the same.

 

 

Before she presided over the Holocaust at Mt. Carmel as the federal Attorney General, Janet Reno was a forceful advocate of “community policing” in order to draw recalcitrant parents into the suffocating embrace of the omniprovident Nanny State.

“They sit behind doors and they glare out at officialdom in whatever its form — a building inspector, a Housing and Urban Development manager, a police officer — and they don’t believe that person,” complained Reno in a 1993 speech to the Police Foundation. “They won’t come out. They won’t bring their child to the clinic … because they are suspicious and unbelieving that government really cares.”

That speech, incidentally, was given on April 9, 1993 — just ten days before the government Reno served so eagerly displayed its “caring” nature by immolating the children of the Branch Davidian community.

Reno, according to a Los Angeles Times summary, urged that local governments assemble teams of “community-friendly, highly respected police officers, social workers, public health nurses, [and] community organizers” to pry open the doors of people burdened with a healthy mistrust of the congealed mass of corruption called government.

 

Elian Gonzalez Reno-style "community policing" strike force.

 

The group that carried out the abduction of Cheyenne Irish is a perfect example of a  Reno-style “community policing” strike force in action.

Among the reasons cited for seizing Cheyenne was Scott Irish’s refusal to attend a seminar taught by Dr. Scott Hampton, Director of an organization called Ending The Violence. Hampton and his organization offer “training and consultation … to child protective workers, probation and parole officers, judges, attorneys, medical professionals, clergy, teachers, and law enforcement” as well as offering “expert witness testimony in both civil and criminal cases.” Hampton has conducted hundreds of workshops and seminars throughout North America and Europe, and is past President of the National Supervised Visitation Network.

Most importantly, he is an unabashed proponent of totalitarian attitude reconstruction, the sort of social engineer C.S. Lewis referred to as an “official straightener.” Although he eagerly cites the work of “tolerance” peddlers such as Morris Dees, Hampton believes that tolerance is inadequate. Unlike those who believe that only God has jurisdiction over the inner life of human beings, Hampton — like others who would use the power of the State to tear windows into men’s souls — maintains thatthe government literally must reprogram the inner life of people who hold “bigoted” beliefs.

“Tolerance does not require that you give up your hatred. It just tells you how to act when you hate. Not good enough,” sniffs Hampton in his new book Tolerant Oppression. “It is time that we teach people how not to hate.” What this requires, of course, is court-ordered reconstruction of individual attitudes using whatever leverage may be necessary — apparently up to and including child abduction.

The kidnapping of Cheyenne Irish on her birthday bears more than a passing resemblance to a November 2008 incident in Pascagoula, Mississippi. The newborn daughter of Cirila Baltazar Cruz, who was born at Pascagoula’s Singing River Hospital, was abducted through deception and coercion by hospital officials and social workers. The child was placed in the custody of two attorneys who practiced “family law” before the same judge who approved the hasty transfer of custody.

Like Jonathan Irish, Baltazar Cruz was deemed an unsuitable parent on the basis of unproven allegations. An employee at a local Chinese restaurant, she had reportedly come to the United States as an illegal immigrant, and was accused of “trading sex for housing.” Her immigration status would not justify the seizure of her child, and the prostitution charge was never investigated. Nevertheless, it took more than a year and a half for Baltazar Cruz — working with a self-described “public interest law firm” — to regain custody of her stolen child.

A federal lawsuit filed against the hospital and others responsible for this atrocity correctly condemns the “unconstitutional actions” of those who abducted Baltazar Cruz’s child. Their unconscionable acts inflicted severe emotional and physical harm on the bereaved mother, alienated the newborn from parental affection, and “substantially interfered with [their] constitutionally protected right to family integrity,” the lawsuit observes.

Exactly the same case can be made on behalf of Jonathan Irish, Stephanie Taylor, and their daughter Cheyenne. It’s not likely, however, that the legal activist group that defended the parental rights of Cirila Baltazar Cruz — the Southern Poverty Law Center — will volunteer its services on behalf of Cheyenne and her parents, given that organization’s distant but substantive role in the crime that was committed against them.

~*~

William Norman Grigg publishes the Pro Libertate blog and hosts the Pro Libertate radio program. He is a Christian Individualist, husband, father, and self-appointed pundit.


Al Quada-The Russian Connection

Recently, a friend forwarded a very good article that was at the site Financialsense.com that spoke about the link between the former Soviet Union and Al Quada. While I suspect his information is correct there is a bigger, even darker picture behind the scenes that goes beyond political and ideological views. You can read that article here: http://tinyurl.com/2buyzvk

My own comments which I emailed to my friend follow:


“While I agree that the Russians are probably involved is these things, I am equally certain that the US, or at least elements of it, are just as deeply involved. I tend to try to look beyond leaders of nations to those pulling the strings behind them.
No government today exists without the support and control of these dark forces behind the scenes. Whether one thinks of the Bilderburg group, trilateral comission, illuminati or others there are forces that go beyond the political and ideological differences of various governments.
All government is evil. Government exists to control resources and people. Government is a tool of the enemy and it’s elitist puppets to destroy God‘s beloved. Destruction of all human life is the end goal. Except, of course, the enemy’s servants who have sold themselves over to him, (they are deceived into believing they are an exception to his hatred of humanity).
It is easy for us, and I do mean myself as well, to get caught up in ideology. The fact is that whether Republican or Democrat, Communist or Monarchist all of them are evil. Obama and Bush are equally evil. Every president we have ever had was controlled behind the scenes.
Obama is only able to do the things he has done as a result of Bush’s efforts to have Congress put in place laws, (patriot act) that allow the Executive branch to spy on and coerce American citizens. 9/11 was a strategic plan used by elitist forces to bring fear to Americans so they would allow more control over their daily lives.
Terror has been used from the beginning by governments to convince the masses to allow themselves to be, “protected”. It is as old as government itself. There must always be an enemy for government to exist.
Whether the enemy og The Greeks, the Persians (Iran), or our own, the British, The South,  Hitler, or the Soviets, ad infinitum. If there is an enemy, those evil germans, those japs, those russians, those muslims…then we can rally the patriotism of the citizens to allow themselves to be taxed. “We must support our troops. After all they are keeping the world safe for us”. We, as good, patriotic citizens will allow the FBI, NSA and CIA to spy on our private lives to “protect us fom terrorism“.
After all “if you have nothing to hide it should be OK for the government to spy on you”. Sorry, but there are inalienble rights given by God that should not be taken from me by any government.
I have come to the conclusion that nearly everyone elected and most beaureacrats should be tried and imprisoned for treason. Most swear to uphold the Constitution and defend it from enemies both foreign and domestic. They are doing neither and are, in most cases, actually domestic enemies themselves and should, by revolution, preferably a non-violent one, be overthrown and at the least imprisoned where their treasons can be proven.
After that we go after the people and forces behind them. We are no less slaves today than Israel was in Egypt. We must cry out to Daddy in repentance for participating in the enemy’s plans to enslave us. We must ask Him to help us to let go of our other gods. To forgive us for trusting in man’s ways of government in place of His government. We would rather let men rule over us than obey The Creator.
As believers we have allowed the majority to decide what is best for us instead of God. Just as Israel, we prefer to be like the other people around us and have trusted in their ways of deciding what is right instead of hearing from the Holy Spirit. Until the Body of Messiah repents of this, and we will, there is great difficulty coming. Since we are in Egypt we will suffer along with them, at least initially, until we are willing to truly come out from among them.”

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