Liberal Fascism: A Closer Look

Ask the average, reasonably educated person what comes to mind when he or she hears the word “fascism” and the immediate responses are “dictatorship,” “genocide,” “anti-Semitism,” “racism,” and “right-wing,” Delve a bit deeper—and move a bit further to the left—and you’ll hear a lot about “eugenics”, “social Darwinism,” “militarism,” and “nationalism.”

WHAT IS FASCISM?

The term fascism typically causes a knee-jerk reaction as something evil and “less than desirable.” We almost immediately think of Nazism; our minds go to Hitler and Mussolini. We consider totalitarianism a synonym of fascism. Totalitarianism relates to a government where the ruler or ruling group has complete control or authority over everyone; completely autocratic, authoritarian, or dictatorial. A totalitarian government gives no room for political parties. Totalitarianism has become a catchall for brutal, soul-killing, Orwellian regimes. But that’s not how the word was originally used or intended. Interestingly, Mussolini himself coined the term to describe a society where everybody belonged; where everyone was taken care of; where everything was inside the state and nothing was outside; where truly no child was left behind.

It has been suggested that true American liberalism is a totalitarian religion, though not necessarily an Orwellian one. It is nice, not brutish. It is nannying, not bullying. But it is definitely totalitarian—”holistic” if you prefer. In other words, today’s liberal politics sees no realm of human life that is beyond political significance, from what we eat and drink (consider New York City’s attempt to outlaw so-called “big gulp” sugary drinks in 2013), to what we smoke, what we say, how we have sex, who we have sex with, how we dress, whether we can say “Merry Christmas,” toys offered to children in fast food meals (used to enhance kids to eat unhealthy food), all-male sports, guns, religion, and gender-based pronouns. Liberals prefer to place their faith in “priestly” experts who “know better,” and who tend to badger and scold. They use science to discredit traditional notions of religion and faith, but speak the language of pluralism and spirituality to defend “nontraditional” beliefs.

WHAT IS LIBERAL FASCISM?

First, let me say there is no definition of “liberal fascism” that is agreed upon between the parties in America today. Jon Bergeron (2015) says, “Far too often socialism and communism are compared to what is currently the political embodiment of the modern leftist ideology in the U.S. These leftist and communist ideas include anti-capitalism, total destruction of the individual in favor of the state, and big government takeover.  We have all heard this stereotype. However, I think there is a far more accurate political ideology floating in the minds of modern leftists, thirsty for revolution to take down ‘the man’ and change the ‘bourgeois system.’ I am speaking of fascism.” Bergeron says typically the masses believe Fascism is reserved only for evil white conservative men who spout evil fascist rhetoric like small government, individualism, self-reliance, capitalism, less dependency on government, traditionalism, and self-responsibility with strong ties to self-sustaining autonomous Christian family units.

That’s because America has bought into the Orwellian leftist language and indoctrination that fascism is of the evil American Right; however, closer examination reveals startling comparisons to the modern American left. Fascism could not be any further from the American conservative! Very few realize that fascism by its very nature was an extremely leftist populist movement taking root in Mussolini’s Italy and spreading like wild fire throughout Europe. Fascism was born out of socialism (the prized ideology among the left) and was an evolved state-centric version of socialism which became popular around the early to mid 1900s. It was “new” and full of revolutionary change.

With fascism, as with all large bloated governments that leftists think can cure all our qualms, the utopian lie is propagated by the state which supposedly aims to build a communal National Socialism state-sponsored family. Fascism was to transcend class differences exactly like socialism preached. Mussolini’s Fascist Party advocated the abolition of the senate and the creation of a national technical council on intellectual and manual labor, industry, commerce and culture; the creation of various government bodies run by worker’s representatives; and the obligation of the state to build rigidly secular schools for the raising of the proletariat’s moral and cultural condition. This all seems hauntingly similar to the modern American leftist’s ideal America. Their rhetoric is far closer to Fascism than the Republican Party’s strong stress on individualism, capitalism, individual responsibility, and reduced government intervention. Remarkably, it also flies in the face of John F. Kennedy’s stanch command, “Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.”

Liberal fascism is fond of preaching about the need for an all-powerful state to coordinate society at the national or, worse yet, global level. Most of all, they share the belief that with the “right amount of adjustment” we can finally realize the utopian dream of creating a better world here on earth. In other words, why wait for the Christian promise of heaven on earth when the Messiah returns? Let’s make our heaven here and now with just a little tweaking and a little legislating. In America, where hostility to big government still remains central to the national character, the case for statism must be made by the liberals against a backdrop of “pragmatism,” fairness, and decency. In other words, liberal fascism must be nice; it must be for our own good.

“I call my philosophy and approach ‘compassionate conservatism.’ It is compassionate to actively help our fellow citizens in need. It is conservative to insist on responsibility and results. And with this hopeful approach, we will make a real difference in people’s lives.” —George W. Bush

How do today’s liberals respond to the compassionate conservatism of the likes of George W. Bush? They use a secularized vocabulary of “hope,” constructing quasi-spiritual philosophies like Hillary Clinton’s “politics of meaning.” Hillary’s new spirituality comes complete with persuasive albeit false teachers. She felt no constraints as she sought out religious components to mesh with or compliment her socialist one-world globalist worldview; something she’d begun quietly embracing several decades earlier.

Does being obsessed on a community or national level about health, nutrition, and the environment make you a fascist? It’s a funny and strange question, I know. Thankfully, the answer is Of course not! The notion seems to be that fascism stems from holding in high regard the interest of the public good—illnesses, cost of health care, availability and affordability of health insurance—but it does so at the cost of the individual. Fascism says the individual has no right not to be healthy. Accordingly, the state has the right and the obligation to force us to be healthy, whatever it takes. To the extent that modern health movements seek to harness the power of the state in order to promote their agenda, they unfortunately flirt with classical fascism. Environmentalism is another area where the state is willing to bully us into complying in the interest of “making the planet a better place to live.” What makes this bullying palatable is the extent to which the state will go to apply shame, guilt and logic to force our hand.

For example, legislators have been hard at work making it illegal to smoke in your own car, or even outdoors, if other people could conceivable be near you and exposed to second-hand smoke. Free speech, too, is under relentless attack where it matters most—relative to elections. Alexis de Tocqueville (1994) wrote in Democracy in America, “It must not be forgotten that it is especially dangerous to enslave men in the minor details of life… I should be inclined to think freedom less necessary in great things than in little ones” (p. 320).

Fascism is a religion of the state. It assumes the organic unity of the body politic and longs for a national leader attuned to the will of the people. It is totalitarian in that it views everything as political and holds that any action by the state is justified to achieve the common good. It takes  responsibility for all aspects of life, including our health and well-being, and seeks to impose uniformity of thought and action, whether by force or through regulation and social pressure. Everything, including the economy and religion, must be aligned with its objectives. Any rival identity is part of the “problem” and therefore defined as the enemy. Contemporary American liberalism embodies all of these aspects of fascism.

Why are today’s liberals unwilling to acknowledge the intellectual history of their political philosophy? Liberalism stands on the shoulders of giants from the initial Progressive Era. This is made obvious by their tendency  to use the word “progressive” whenever talking about their liberal core convictions. They consistently claim it is conservatives who have their roots in fascism. Of course, you won’t see liberals today running around shouting from the rooftops that they intend to conquer the world by force of arms. They show no signs of being part of a nationalist or eugenics movement. Instead, they speak of having the best of intentions when it comes to society. Whether this is true or not is not necessarily clear.

THE ORIGINAL PROGRESSIVE ERA (1890-1920)

Progressivism is the term applied to a variety of responses to the economic and social problems seemingly caused by rapid industrialization introduced to America. Those who agreed with this concept wanted to stop child labor and put major regulations on big business.The major goals of the Progressives were to promote the ides of morality, economic reform, efficiency and social welfare. Progressivism began as a social movement and grew into a political movement. The early Progressives rejected Social Darwinism. Rather, they believed that the problems society faced (poverty, violence, greed, racism, class warfare) could best be addressed by providing a good education, a safe environment, and an efficient workplace. Progressives lived mainly in the cities, were college educated, and believed that government could be a tool for change. Progressives concentrated on exposing the evils of corporate greed, combating the fear of immigrants, and urging Americans to think hard about what democracy really means.

Progressivism was the reform movement that ran from the late 19th century through the first decades of the 20th century, during which leading intellectuals and social reformers in the United States sought to address the economic, political, and cultural questions that had arisen in the context of the rapid changes brought with the Industrial Revolution and the growth of modern capitalism in America.

On a national level, Progressivism gained a strong voice in the White House when Theodore Roosevelt became president in 1901. Roosevelt believed that strong corporations were good for America, but he also believed that corporate behavior must be watched to ensure that corporate greed did not get out of hand. He felt this must be accomplished through government regulations for trust-busting and other activities of corporate greed. Progressivism ended with World War I when the horrors of war exposed people’s cruelty.

Upton Sinclair’s book The Jungle (1906) caused Roosevelt to push Congress to pass numerous reforms like the Meat Inspection Act , the Pure Food Act, and the Drug Act. He also helped invest the Interstate Commerce Act with new powers, and created the new Department of Commerce and Labor in 1903. This new agency was empowered with the ability to investigate corporations. Roosevelt also set aside over 50 wildlife sanctuaries and parks that are still in use today. Roosevelt built the Panama Canal, which made trade with other countries much easier. 

Many Americans bought into President Woodrow Wilson’s progressive claims that the war would make the world safe for democracy.

DOES PROGRESSIVISM HAVE A PLACE IN AMERICA TODAY?

The push for a progressive takeover of Congress began long before Trump won office. One audacious plan began to take hold in early 2016, as a crew of organizers for Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign traveled the country, staging revival-style rallies. In fact, when watching video of Sanders’ rallies, I had the sense I was watching the sermons of a hybrid preacher/politician/prophet. Members of Congress and the Justice Department are just two elements in a movement where different groups with different agendas jostle for donations and influence in the 2020 presidential election.

Some, like Democracy for America and the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, were in place years before the Sanders campaign. California billionaire Tom Steyer, the Democrats’ largest donor, has spent millions of his own money on NextGen America, a group that aims to mobilize young voters. He is pulling out all stops to register first-time teenage voters as liberals. This hedge-fund-manager-turned-activist vows to build the largest progressive operation in America. And he has the money to at least try to pull it off.

History has shown that in virtually all extreme leftist movements, be it communism, Nazism, socialism, or Fascism, murder, violence, and censorship are often used to push the party agenda. Does this sound absurd? The Southern Democrats, avid supporters of slavery, stopped at nothing to frighten Blacks into servitude, pushing those who transgressed (or tried to leave the plantation) into compliance, take Black women for themselves, keep Blacks beholden to their “masters” for their very sustenance, and to discourage and punish Republicans and freethinking Democrats who dared vote to grant freedom or, indeed, any rights, to Blacks. The intimidation was horrendous, evil, violent, constant, inhumane, unthinkable, and absolutely unbelievable.

This historic pattern is cyclical. To the extent that outright public lynching, stonings, murder, and violence are unlikely today, nevertheless, extreme leftists are quite adept at countless other discriminatory, persecutory, New Jim Crow methods of keeping minorities down. And that’s just their behavior toward those they deem less-than-human or not their equal. Beyond that, many recent events (Charlottesville, VA) show us that anyone who rises up in support of conservative values can fall victim—directly or indirectly—to the violence of the Progressive Movement. I can think of two brilliant mantras that warn us relative to history. First, we are told that those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it. Second, George Orwell expressed in 1984, “He who controls the past controls the future.” In other words, if the government is capable of editing, rewriting or erasing history in order to present a sanitized picture of what occurred, then the future is whatever the government creates it to be.

Toward what do the Progressives of today believe they are progressing? The chances are more than good that they have no idea. Somehow “progress” means greater equality, greater understanding, greater tolerance, greater peace, and greater evolution. Somehow. But it’s never entirely clear how. In almost every sense, modern Progressives mean that anything they deem good is progressive while all else is not just wrong but evil. Is there an actual end to the progress of Progressives? Is there a threshold of equality that must be crossed, one that would at least allow us to claim victory? Is there some utopia just around the corner, achievable in some viable way?

Just as the Progressives of today have no real sense of where their progress might or should lead, they have even less sense of their origins. And to the extent that any of them do know, they don’t want us to know. But is everything the Progressive Movement stands for bad for America. Likely, no. Perhaps it is the manner in which they want to cram these many changes down our throats that’s wrong. What is the endgame, anyway? Do the leftists want to help you and I achieve our every want and desire (something that is no doubt seated deep in our will, mind and emotion) at the expense of our mind and our spirit? Do they want us to want our desires (which they have now determined for us to be additional unalienable rights) to the extent that we’ll become beholden to the state in order to have these desires met? And do they now want to tell us want we want and what we should want? Does big government want to become our sugar daddy?

Nothing has been more devastating and dangerous politically in the 20th and 21st  century than leftist thought. If we look at 20th century communism alone we see that an alarming 85 to 100 million worldwide have perished under leftist regimes. These governments have also been guilty of censorship, labor and internment camps, blanket violation of civil liberties, mass incarceration of so-called “undesirables,” blockade of international humanitarian aid, refusal of scrutiny of their human rights violations, suppression of free expression of religion (especially Christianity), and many other forms of oppression. We’ve already seen a systematic attack of Christianity in America. Progressives do not want alternatives to the Big Bang, Darwinism, humanism, big government as our “father,” and other questions about the origin and meaning of life being preached or taught. Militant atheists are fond of explaining that Christian parents cramming their “religion” down the throats of their children is nothing less than indoctrination and a form of child abuse.

CONCLUDING THOUGHTS

The atmosphere of intolerance, censorship, and incipient violence created by both the thuggish hard left and the ideologically preening elite left will have dire results for everyone. It’s inevitable. It undermines support on the left and right alike for free expression and a minimum of interference—by coercive government or coercive mobs—in assembly, organizing, and expression. If serious Progressives, including opponents of Trump, want to stop this cycle of illiberalism, they have to stop demonizing the right and start training their rhetorical fire on the vandals in the street and the ideologues in the newsroom. Doing so will not only safeguard Americans’ liberties—which are critical to a free and “progressive” America as our Founding Fathers intended— it might well save lives. In the meantime, the Trump administration and the Justice Department need not only to think about how to stop the current spate of violence, but move to stop it before it gets even worse. Appeasement is not an option. I cannot imagine how to even begin a dialog with these so-called Progressives. They don’t want to talk. They think there’s nothing to talk about. I suggest we on the other side of the aisle keep our rhetoric to a minimum and show love and respect. 

God bless the United States of America.

References

Bergeron, J. (March 27, 2015). “Why Modern Leftists are Fascists.” Return of Kings. Retrieved from: http://www.returnofkings.com/58601/why-modern-leftists-are-fascists

de Tocqueville, A. (1994). Democracy in America. State College, PA: The Pennsylvania State University.

Orwell, G. (1948). 1984. Paris: Hatier.

 

 

Presidents and the FBI

President Donald J. Trump’s situation regarding possible investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation is sadly not unique. The list of presidents investigated by the FBI while in office is frighteningly long. Beginning with Richard Nixon, eight of our last nine presidents have been the subject of FBI investigations while in office. Sadly, it seems almost routine. Barack Obama is the only sitting president since Nixon to not be the focus of an FBI probe.

Richard M. Nixon

Nixon Close UpOn June 17, 1972, five men were arrested inside the Watergate Complex in Washington, D.C. while attempting to plant electronic surveillance devices in the offices of the Democratic National Committee. The question of what exactly they hoped to discover is still unanswered, but it would turn out this foiled break-in was just the tip of the iceberg when it came to the criminal activities of Nixon’s administration. Nixon’s “plumbers”—a White House covert investigative unit so named because they were ostensibly formed to stop leaks to the press of various secret activities—engaged in all manner of political debauchery, beginning with digging up dirt on Daniel Ellsberg, who had blown the whistle on Nixon’s secret bombing raids in Laos and Cambodia. While Nixon managed to dodge a surprising amount of heat for various corrupt activities carried out by his White House, the personal hand Nixon took in covering up these men’s activity ultimately led to his downfall. He resigned in the middle of impeachment proceedings on August 4, 1974.

In the aftermath of the break in, Nixon asked the CIA to disrupt the FBI investigation, paid co-conspirators for their silence, and attempted to manufacture evidence exonerating himself and others to give to the judge involved in the case. The investigation into just how high up the chain of command that Watergate scandal reached was a multiyear joint effort between the FBI and a number of journalists, most notably Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward of the Washington Post. The pair were receiving insider info from FBI second-in-command Mark Felt, who was identifed for decades simply as “Deep Throat.” Eventually, the Senate set-up a special independent counsel to investigate and a grand jury was formed.

Ultimately, the House Judiciary Committee approved three articles of impeachment against Nixon. Article 1, Obstruction of JusticeArticle 2, Abuse of Power, and Article 3, Defiance of Subpoenas. Nixon resigned in the face of almost certain impeachment and removal from office. He was subsequently and infamously pardoned by his successor, Gerald Ford.

Gerald R. Ford

gerald-ford-9298683-1-402The Watergate scandal went well beyond the initial break-in and extended far into Richard Nixon’s second term as president, with Gerald Ford replacing the disgraced Spiro Agnew as vice president. The investigation into the crimes of Nixon’s administration did not end with his resignation, and many—including the FBI—naturally questioned whether Ford had been complicit in any way. These questions intensified when Ford’s infamous pardon of Nixon raised allegations of dirty dealing. His approval ratings plummeted and there was speculation Ford and Nixon had struck some kind of corrupt agreement behind closed doors. No charges were ever raised against Ford in connection with the Watergate scandal specifically.

Public trust in the government was virtually non-existent after the Watergate Scandal. It didn’t help that information came to light about potentially illegal activities carried out by a number of government organizations. Ford’s vice president launched an investigation meant to uncover CIA corruption and present previously disclosed information to the American public in a transparent fashion. Known as the Rockefeller Commission, the endeavor ultimately did more harm than good. It was determined that Ford’s administration had heavily edited and censored their report before it was released. In fact, Chief of Staff Dick Cheney ordered the removal of an 86-page section regarding CIA assassinations.

Jimmy Carter

JimmyCarterPortrait2Carter was well into his presidency when it emerged that his family peanut business had received potentially inappropriate loans. Investigators alleged that Carter had used money from these loans to fund his presidential campaign in 1976. A special counsel, Paul J. Curran, was appointed to investigate the manner, and he did so over a period of seven months, mostly out of the public spotlight but with the involvement of a federal grand jury.

The Curran report cited numerous irregularities in the transactions between Carter’s company and the bank. The loans, which eventually grew to a total of $6.5 million, were first extended in June 1975 when the National Bank of Georgia was run by Bert Lance, who later became President Carter’s first budget director. The report cited numerous instances of checks written on a Carter business account at the bank without sufficient funds to back them up, the removal of collateral in violation of the terms of the NHG loans, bookkeeping irregularities at the bank and other violations of the loan agreements between NBG and the Carter company.

The largest of these loans, extended so the warehouse could buy unshelled peanuts for its sheller, was continually short of collateral except for a brief period in 1975. During one seven-week period in the spring of 1976, the warehouse owed as much as $1,150,000 to NBG without having any peanuts under bond—as it had agreed to do—to secure the debt. Currand was determined to find out whether any money was diverted illegally from the warehouse to Jimmy Carter’s 1976 presidential campaign and whether any federal crimes were committed in the handling of several large loans from NBG to the warehouse.

Ronald Reagan

Official_Portrait_of_President_Reagan_1985_(cropped)In a world of complicated presidential scandals, so-called “Debategate” offers nearly whimsical simplicity—someone stole the prep notes of Jimmy Carter before an important televised debate and gave them to Reagan’s team. Reagan dominated Carter in the debate and cruised to an election win. But we should not expect our presidential candidates to engage in such sophomoric behavior. An investigation by the Justice Department was launched, lasting nearly eight months, ultimately finding no evidence of criminal conduct. Democrats and certain media outlets cried out for appointment of a Special Counsel. The request was not granted.

Reagan’s not-so-juvenile scandal to follow was Iran-Contra. In 1985, the government of Iran, under embargo due in part to their war with Iraq, reached a secret deal with the Reagan administration. This involved the United States illegally trading arms to Iran in exchange for the release of American hostages. The Administration violated international law and Reagan’s campaign promise to never negotiate with terrorists. Moreover, money gained from the deal was funneled Contra militants fighting against communist Sandinistas in Nicaragua.

At first, the Reagan-appointed Tower Commission looked into Iran-Contra to determine whether Reagan had advanced knowledge of these secret dealings. Eventually, an independent counsel, Lawrence Walsh, was appointed to take over the investigation. Despite an 8-year investigation, Walsh failed to uncover evidence officially linking Reagan to the Iran-Contra affair.  Fourteen people were eventually charged with crimes relative to the operation and conspiracy to cover it up. A large number of the convictions for high-ranking Reagan officials were overturned by pardons from incoming President George H.W. Bush. Oliver North, an army colonel who had admitted to diverting funds to the Contras, was found guilty, but his conviction was later overturned on a technicality.

George H.W. Bush

President George H W BushA scandal that began during the Reagan administration seeped into the early days of the administration of Bush 41. The Reagan administration began granting Iraq financial support to help with the Iran-Iraq War. Despite Congress pushing for sanctions against Iraq after allegations of human rights violations in 1988, both the Bush and Reagan administrations strove to keep relations friendly in defiance of Congress.

Bush administration officials were accused of dealing with an international bank located in Italy with a shady reputation. The bank was later accused of loaning money to Iraq for the illegal purchase of weapons during the Iran-Iraq war in 1992. Some of the money was linked to loans previously granted to Iraq by the Bush administration. This led investigators to speculate that the administration had engaged in business transactions with the Italian bank despite knowing its role in illegal weapons dealing.

 Former judge Frederick B. Lacey was named Special Prosecutor in charge of investigating multiple matters involving the Bush administration, including the bank scandal and potential facilitating of weapon sales. Lacey found no federal crime had been committed, and no connection to George H.W. Bush was ever formally drawn. None of the many investigations found any evidence of involvement, conspiracy, or cover-up.

Bill Clinton

President Clinton graced us with several major scandals.

Bill Clinton and the Flag

Whitewater. The Whitewater scandal was a hold-over from Arkansas when he and wife Hillary suffered a failed business venture known as the Whitewater Development Corporation. Their business partner, Jim McDougal, engaged in fraudulent activity as the development failed, forming a phony loan company known as Madison Guaranty. It was alleged that the Clintons themselves were involved by pressuring an Arkansas banker to provide McDougal with an illegal loan. Allegations were also made that fraudulent funds from Madison were used to pay off debts related to Bill Clinton’s campaign for governor.

Several investigations were launched into the Whitewater scandal, including one by famed independent counsel Kenneth Starr. The investigation uncovered a staggering number of wrongdoings by McDougal and those associated with him. Several fraud charges resulted from the scandal, but no evidence emerged proving the Clintons were aware of the fraud or participated in any illegal activities related to Madison Guaranty. None of this derails Bill Clinton’s path to the presidency.

In June 1993, Deputy White House Counsel Vincent Foster files three years of delinquent Whitewater corporate tax returns. Foster is found dead in a Washington area park on July 20, 1993. Police rule the death a suicide. Federal investigators are not allowed access to Foster’s office immediately after the discovery, but White House aides enter Foster’s office shortly after his death, giving rise to speculation that files were removed from his office before the FBI got there.

The Lewinsky Affair. The investigation into the Whitewater scandal was eventually expanded, with independent counsel Kenneth Starr looking into allegations of sexual impropriety by President Clinton. This included an affair with young White House intern Monica Lewinsky, which had left behind physical and circumstantial evidence of her encounter with Clinton. Most importantly, Clinton perjured himself during the Whitewater investigation by denying sexual relations with Lewinsky under oath. Starr concluded in late 1998 that Clinton committed perjury, and should be charged. Articles of impeachment were issued and a Senate trial followed. Every Democrat and ten Republicans voted to acquit Clinton.

Filegate. The Filegate scandal surfaced during the investigation of Travelgate where seven presumably competent individuals were ousted to make room for Clinton relatives. In 1993 and 1994, hundreds of FBI background files on officials in previous Republican presidential administrations were improperly given to Craig Livingstone, the director of White House security who was a Hillary Clinton favorite.

Bill and Hillary Clinton were cleared of any wrongdoing or connection to the acquisition of the files. Fingerprint analysis in 1996 supported Hillary’s claims she had no contact with the files. Nevertheless, the civil lawsuit connected to Filegate would not conclude for well over a decade when a judge dismissed the case. Nevertheless, Filegate had long reaching consequences. This, along with other scandals, were brought up numerous times by Donald Trump during his 2016 presidential campaign. It’s been spectulated that renewed interest in the case, and the resulting bad press, was a contributing factor to Hillary Clinton’s defeat.

George W. Bush

Geo W Bush

Valarie Plame. For 18 years as an undercover agent for the CIA, Valerie Plame Wilson kept her occupation and her identity a secret, even from her own friends and family, to avoid compromising her work as a spy. When she was exposed in 2003, it led to a federal investigation and raised questions about what would motivate such a betrayal. The Bush administration released Plame’s identity to syndicated columnist Robert Novak. Of course, Novak would go on to publish Plame’s name in a newspaper column.

Plame’s husband, Joseph Wilson, had criticized President Bush relative to the alleged “yellow cake” uranium that Saddam Hussein obtained from Niger, and the leak was seen as a form of retaliation. “Outing” a covert operative imperils many. It risks not only the officer’s safety—there are many who want a CIA officer dead—but the entire network of foreign assets being run by the officer. In some cases, the assets’ lives and even those of their families may be jeopardized. The danger is real.

The investigation into Plamegate lasted 22 months, and was led by special counsel Patrick Fitzgerald. The investigation looked beyond the leak to determine whether Dick Cheney’s Chief of Staff, Scooter Libby, had been involved in a cover-up. Ultimately, no one was charged in relation to the leak itself, but Scooter Libby was convicted for misleading investigators. His sentence was commuted by President Bush, who was never formally connected with the Plame affair himself.

Donald J. Trump

president-trump-emergency-alert-text-fema-2018Russian Collusion and Obstruction of Justice. Allegations have been made that Donald Trump’s campaign for presidency colluded with the Russian government to influence the 2016 election. There have also been subsequent allegations that the actions of the Trump administration, including the firing of FBI director James Comey, constitute obstruction of justice.

U.S. intelligence agencies have been able to determine that Moscow attempted to sway the 2016 presidential election away from Hillary Clinton and in favor of Donald Trump. It has been alleged that Russian hackers stole information linked to the Clinton campaign and passed it on to WikiLeaks so it could be released to undermine her. Congressional committees were set up to investigate the matter. In March, then FBI director James Comey confirmed the Bureau was undertaking its own investigation. Trump fired Comey on May 9, 2017, less than two months after Comey confirmed at a congressional hearing that the Bureau was investigating “whether there was any coordination between the [Trump] campaign and Russia’s efforts” to influence the 2016 presidential election.

The White House has offered several contradictory reasons for Comey’s firing. Initially, Trump said he terminated Comey because of “strong recommendations” from Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. Later, Trump said he planned on firing Comey “regardless of recommendation.” The president also claimed the “FBI has been in turmoil,” and a White House spokeswoman said “the rank and file of the FBI has lost confidence” in Comey. Much information surfaced that these statements were not accurate. Rather, Trump was overheard on May 17, 2017 informing Russian officials in the Oval Office that he had fired Director Comey. He said, “I faced great pressure because of Russia. That’s taken off.” Still, Trump informed Lester Holt of NBC News that Comey was fired because of incompetence.

WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE?

Americans who lived through the Watergate scandal believed that Nixon’s impeachment and resignation would forever put to rest the notion that the president is above the law. Article 1 of the three impeachment articles filed against Nixon stated that he “obstructed and impeded the administration of justice.” Obstruction also was part of both impeachment articles returned against President Bill Clinton by the House of Representatives in 1998. Clinton ultimately was acquitted, but the principle that the president can be held accountable for obstruction of justice remained intact.

The New York Times noted on June 2, 2018 that lawyers for President Trump revealed the basis of their legal strategy in a confidential letter, informing special counsel Robert Mueller that Trump will not comply with requests for an interview. The letter, dated January 29, also claimed Trump could use his executive powers to pardon if needed. In the letter, the lawyers noted the importance of the presidency itself. “We are reminded of our duty to protect the president and his office,” adding, “Ensuring that the office remains sacred and above the fray of shifting political winds and gamesmanship is of critical importance.” Sekulow and Dowd—who has resigned from Trump’s legal team—also discussed the priorities and perception of the presidency. “The president’s prime function as the chief executive ought not be hampered by requests for interview,” they wrote. “Having him testify demeans the office of the president before the world.”

The letter stated, in pertinent part, “It remains our position that the President’s actions here, by virtue of his position as the chief law enforcement officer, could neither constitutionally nor legally constitute obstruction because that would amount to him obstructing himself, and that he could, if he wished, terminate the inquiry, or even exercise his power to pardon if he so desired.” Regarding the firing of James Comey, the letter stated, “As you know, and as Mr. Comey himself has acknowledged, a president can fire an FBI director at any time and for any reason. To the extent that such an action has an impact on any investigation pending before the FBI, that impact is simply an effect of the president’s lawful exercise of his constitutional power and cannot constitute obstruction of justice here. No president has ever faced charges of obstruction merely for exercising his constitutional authority. A president can also order the termination of an investigation by the Justice Department or FBI at any tie and for any reason.”

It is certainly possible for a president to obstruct justice. Any case for immunity from criminal prosecution—at least while in office—has its proponents, but they base their position mainly on the consideration that a sitting president must be unencumbered to fully execute the duties of the office. The security and sovereignty of the nation depend on it. While a sitting president may be out of reach in court, there’s no question that the House can impeach and the Senate can convict the president for any actions, including obstruction of justice, that lawmakers decide are “high crimes and misdemeanors” under the Constitution.

The question remains: Did President Trump fire Director Comey because he would not agree to “lift the cloud” of the Russian investigation? For purposes of criminal law, presidents must be judged by the lawfulness or unlawfulness of their acts, not by the motivations that underlay them. It’s not that a president can never be charged with obstruction of justice. It is that he cannot be charged with that crime if his only actions were constitutionally authorized. This distinction is central to our system of separation of powers and checks and balances.

Liberal Fascism

Dinesh D’Souza, in his seminal book Death of  a Nation, wrote, “Progressive Democrats are in fact the inventors of racism and white supremacy, and the Republican Party fought them all the way. Progressives and Democrats were also the groups that were in bed with fascism and Nazism in the 1920s and 1930s, while Republicans opposed this cozy alliance.” D’Souza notes that all the villains of the civil rights movement—Birmingham sheriff Bull Connor, Selma (AL) sheriff Jim Clark, Arkansas governor Orval Faubus, Georgia governor Lester Maddox, Mississippi governor Ross Barnett, Alabama governor and presidential candidate George Wallace—were Democrats. Every one of them.

D’Souza adds, “So we have the remarkable spectacle today of the party of racism, fascism and white supremacy blaming the party of anti-racism and resistance to fascism and white supremacy for being racist, fascist and white supremacist.” It is quite sad to me that middle class Americans, people of color, and those of alternative lifestyle, are buying into the fiction of GOP racism and white supremacy; additionally, they are convinced the Democrats have their best interests at heart; that a “blue wave” in America means a kinder, loving, supportive, understanding, equal-rights, open-minded government.

I must admit that President Trump’s claim “I’m a nationalist” has done more to poison America’s opinion of him than is warranted. I’m convinced that Trump means exactly what nationalism is: “…a political, social, and economic system characterized by the promotion of the interests of a particular nation, especially with the aim of gaining and maintaining sovereignty over the homeland.” Trump proposes true, effective border security and enforcement of immigration laws for the sole purpose of maintaining the sovereignty and security of America.

WHAT IS LIBERAL FASCISM?

Ask the average, reasonably-educated person what comes to mind when he or she hears the word “fascism” and the immediate responses are “dictatorship,” “genocide,” “anti-Semitism,” “racism,” and (unfortunately) “right-wing.” The Urban Dictionary—at urbandictionary.comdefines liberal fascism as …a term to describe the alt-Left political movement… a group of liberals who believe that any free speech that opposes their views should not be allowed… who oppose and try to quiet any person or group who does not follow or believe their set of values and beliefs. Liberal fascists also believe that every American should follow and adhere to the liberal Democratic views and policies regardless of their political background or system.

There is no word in the English language that gets thrown around more freely by people who don’t know what it means than “fascism.” Roger Griffin, in his book The Nature of Fascism, defines fascism as “a genus of political ideology whose mythic core in its various permutations is a palingenetic form of populist ultra-nationalism.” Roger Eatwell, author of Fascism: A History, says that fascism’s essence is “a form of thought that preaches the need for social rebirth in order to forge a holistic-national radical Third Way.” It is a mass movement that combines different classes but is prevalently of the middle class, which sees itself as having a mission of national regeneration. Interestingly, fascism is both “anti-liberalism” and “anti-conservatism.”

Jonah Goldberg, author of Liberal Fascism: The Secret History of the American Left from Mussolini to the Politics of Meaning, believes that fascism is primarily a secular religion. Goldberg writes, “…many modern liberals and leftists act as if they know exactly what fascism is. What’s more, they see it everywhere—except when they look in the mirror.” George Orwell, in his infamous 1946 essay “Politics and the English Language,” said the word fascism has no meaning except insofar as it signifies something not desirable. The New York Times is noted for promoting modern intellectuals who  raise the possibility that the GOP is a fascist party, and that Christian conservatives are the new Nazis.

Goldberg asks, “…why aren’t we hearing similar denunciations of groups ranging from the National Council of La Raza—that is, ‘The Race’—to the radical Hispanic group MEchA, whose motto—‘Por La Raza todo. Fuera de La Raza nada’—means ‘Everything for the race, nothing outside the race?’ Why is it that when a white man spouts such sentiments it’s ‘objectively’ fascist, but when a person of color says the same thing it’s merely an expression of fashionable multiculturalism?” Progressives and liberals today offer no answer at all to such questions. They would much rather maintain George Orwell’s  definition of fascism as anything not desirable, thus excluding their own fascist hate mongering.

I believe the major pitfall in all this is that fascism, properly understood, is not a phenomenon of the right at all. Instead, as Goldberg states, it is and always has been a phenomenon of the left. Let’s remember that fascism and communism are not polar opposites—schools of thought from across the gulf between left and right—but are closely related, historical competitors for the same constituents, seeking to dominate and control the same sociopolitical space. Goldberg writes, “American Progressivism—the moralistic social crusade from which modern liberals proudly claim descent—is in some respects the major source of the fascist ideas applied in Europe by Mussolini and Hitler. Unfortunately, even those well-read Americans who understand this comparison simply smile and say, “Yeah, but it can’t happen here. Not in America. Not in the 21st century.”

Angry left-wingers shout that all those to their right, particularly corporate fat cats and the politicians who love them, are fascists. America is experiencing “nice fascism.” In many respects, fascism not only is here in America, but has been here for nearly a century. What we call liberalism—the refurbished edifice of American Progressivism—is in fact a descendant and manifestation of fascism. The main objectives of the Progressive Era—widespread social activism and political reform that swept across America from the 1890s to the 1920s—were eliminating problems caused by industrialization, urbanization, immigration, and corruption in government.

A NEW PROGRESSIVE ERA

Today there is a growing constellation of voices and organizations trying to build a new progressive reform movement. It’s no accident that liberals now call themselves progressives and that the main Democratic Party-oriented think tank in Washington is named the Center for American Progress. Obviously there are differences between the Progressive Era of the early nineteenth century and today’s progressive movement. But take a look at the following list of factors:

  • a conservative president who is deeply unpopular
  • a country facing profound economic and security challenges
  • new technologies upending traditional media
  • a cohort of new immigrants
  • a bulging generation of young people ready to transform the political landscape

Is this a description of 2018 America? Surprisingly, no. This is a list of factors present in America in 1932 at the tail-end of the Hoover administration. We know how that turned out for our beloved country. FDR and his fellow progressives built social programs and international institutions that ushered in an era of unrivaled dependency on the “nanny state” for prosperity and stability. They used a fresh, new medium—commercial broadcast radio—to reach citizens, and built a new “majority coalition” from the emerging demographics of that time period. As in FDR’s day, the new medium of the Internet has all but replaced commercial broadcast radio. In 2017 alone, smartphone shipments in North America amounted to more than 200 million units. Sales of these devices exceeded $50 billion. Imagine the opportunity this presents for progressives to saturate the marketplace with propaganda touting the supposed benefits of a social rebirth in America.

IS PRESIDENT DONALD J. TRUMP A FASCIST?

The United States’ supposed lurch toward authoritarianism—or maybe full-on fascism—has become an obsession among progressives and even a few centrists and conservatives. The word fascism has recently reemerged as a key piece of political terminology in our country. The headlines immediately after Donald Trump’s election as president in November 2017 read like a disturbing question and answer session. I remember the textbook definition from my Political Science class at Penn State, and it does not ring true with what progressives want us to believe about America today: 

Fascism is a political ideology that seeks to organize the government and economy under one centralized authority, with strict social controls and suppression of all opposition. It advocates a single-party rule, and rejects the autonomy of any ethnic group that it does not consider to be part of the nation. Typically, this ideology supports policies of nationalism and racism and solidifies power through terror and censorship. 

Frankly, I don’t see any indication that Donald Trump seeks to create a centralized “big government” in America; that is the design of liberals. Nor do I see any tendency for him to push for a single-party system, or the rejection of individual rights based on race or socioeconomic class. Trump is not a racist, and has no designs to solidify power through terror; nor does he want to repeal the First Amendment. Whenever President Trump has to address issues relative to illegals pouring into America unfettered, he looks at the safety and security, indeed, the economy, of the United States. There is no “smoking gun” of Trump claiming (publicly or privately) that Hispanics are sub-human; that legal immigration to our great country (especially from war-torn, despotic, dehumanizing, poverty-stricken nations) is evil and must be stopped at all costs, in any form (legal or undocumented), with no exceptions. I just don’t see it.

I am grateful, however, that he insists on immigrants coming into our country through established, legal channels, and that he stands firm against undocumented aliens entering America. How many of us truly understand the tremendous threat of allowing anyone to simply walk across the border without knowing who they are, where they’re coming from, why they’re emigrating, and where  they go once they’re here. Recently, intelligence sources have determined that Islamic extremists bent on attacking America from within have allied with Mexican drug cartels. They’re being aided and abetted by drug lords (indeed, narco terrorists). Allowing illegal aliens into this country unconstrained represents a clear and present danger to the sovereignty and security of the United States.

President Trump’s concern over massive illegal immigration is at the root of his claim to be a nationalist. He intends to put America first.

Bizarre claims that President Barack Obama was a Kenyan Muslim spy weren’t meant to be taken at face value; rather, they were designed to undermine trust in anything Obama said. “Donald Trump is a fascist” sounds more like a campaign slogan spouted by the opposition than a statement of fact. Bill Maher recently stated on his show, “If liberals believe President Trump is a fascist or an authoritarian leader capable of using force to suppress the opposition they should rethink their beliefs about guns.” This is a solid example of rhetoric spouted by pundits that tends to incite concern and panic. What evidence does anyone have that President Trump has designs on elevating his presidency to a dictatorship?

Key Trump administration officials have been confronted at restaurants. Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) urged protestors to hound Trump officials at restaurants, gas stations or department stores. Progressive pundits and the liberal media almost daily think up new ways of characterizing President Trump as a Nazi, fascist, tyrant or buffoon. Celebrities openly fantasize about doing harm to Trump. Just as Barack Obama was not a centrist, neither is Trump. Obama promised to fundamentally transform the United States. Trump pledged to do the same and more—but in the exact opposite direction. Democratic Party leaders are obviously not in agreement with the direction—right of center—Trump’s policies are taking. I believe the current Progressive meltdown is about more than just political differences; it is mostly about power—or rather, the utter and unexpected loss of it.

Donald Trump is not a fascist. Fascism has been an all-purpose insult for many years, but it has a real definition, and according to scholars of historical fascism, Trump doesn’t qualify. Rather, he’s a right-wing populist. He doesn’t want to overthrow the existing democratic system; nor does he want to scrap the Constitution. He doesn’t romanticize violence itself as a vital cleansing agent of society. But if this populist upheaval isn’t fascism or anything close to it, what is it?

The Trump phenomenon is a distinctly American upheaval: admittedly ugly in its overtones at times (which tends to rub people the wrong way), and occasionally disruptive of valuable traditions and institutions, but basically a necessary remedy to the centralizing dynamic of consensus liberalism. “It is certainly true,” said neoconservative intellectual Irving Kristol, “that any kind of populism can be a danger to our democratic orders. But it is also true that populism can be a corrective to the defects of democratic orders—defects often arising from the intellectual influence, and the skillful entrepreneurial politics, of our democratic elites.”

Today’s Democrat elites—the liberals and progressives who run our institutions—have become too complacent in their dominance and too conformist in their opinions. The populist movement that’s turning our politics upside down won’t win them over, but it will weaken their influence and rattle their piety. When the dust settles and the United States is still the free and vibrant place it was before—when the nation hasn’t metamorphosed into some fascist dystopia—they just might engage in a little honest, candid, self-criticism. In the meantime, I suggest taking any accusation that Trump is a fascist with caution.

The Urban Plantation

The Democrats have been shouting from the rooftops about their love for Mexicans. This is best reflected in the unabashed loyalty that top Democrats—and the Democratic Party platform—show toward illegal aliens. In the past, Democrats at least paid lip service to the necessity for immigration laws to be enforced, and for all people to obey those laws. The Democratic platform of 2016 subtly left out the term “illegal” or any variation thereof. Instead, it described America’s immigration system as a problem but not illegal immigration. Today, the Democrats are the party that sides with the illegals.

barack_obama_birth_certificate_fb

Under the Obama administration, illegals became a sort of privileged lawbreaking class. Initially, Obama did not hesitate to deport illegals, essentially carrying out the law and continuing policies of the preceding Bush administration. Then Obama changed course and publicly announced that through an exercise of prosecutorial discretion immigration laws would only be enforced against certain types of illegals—namely violent criminals—while so-called “normal” illegals would be left alone. The problem with this arbitrary approach is it sets an informal and unpredictable position and tends to tie the hands of the next administration.

Under Trump, Democrats in blue states are fighting hard to protect illegal aliens from being deported. We’ve all heard about the sanctuary cities that now dot blue states across the country. Mayors of these cities have made their position quite clear: They have no intention of cooperating in the enforcement of immigration laws. On the contrary, they will give “sanctuary” to lawbreakers who seek to evade capture and deportation.

Sanctuary CIties Map

In a 93-page ruling released in early June 2018, a U.S. District judge sided with Philadelphia (in my home state) to retain its sanctuary city status. Philadelphia doesn’t officially label itself a “sanctuary city.” The term, which has no precise legal definition, generally refers to jurisdictions that put rules around or limits on cooperation with federal immigration officers. Per the Office of Immigration Affairs, City of Philadelphia, which believes the phrase has become too politically loaded, Philadelphia prefers to be known as a “Welcoming City.” Philadelphia’s “action guide” on its immigration policies, dated January 8, 2018, states the following under the heading “Get Informed:”

Philadelphia is a city of immigrants. America was founded on the belief that everyone is created equal—and every person means every person, no exceptions. Philadelphia treats immigrants as we would any other resident under our criminal justice system.

The action guide lists several “facts” regarding why immigrants are vital to the City of Philadelphia.

  • The economic impact of Philadelphia’s immigrant population helps the City grow revenue and create jobs. Since 2000, immigrants are responsible for 75% of the workforce growth. Of the nearly one billion dollars in earnings generated by small business owners in Philadelphia, immigrant entrepreneurs are responsible for $295 million of those earnings.
  • Immigrants have played an important role in Philadelphia’s population growth in recent years. Immigrants helped reverse fifty years of population loss, thereby strengthening the City in the eyes of government officials. In some Philadelphia neighborhoods, the influx of immigrants has supposedly prevented destabilizing blight, improved public schools, and help spur growth in neighborhood commercial corridors.
  • More undocumented immigrants live in Philadelphia than in any other large North American city. And many Philadelphia families live in mixed-status households, which means that some family members are documented, but their parents or siblings might not be.

Progressives in California and New York go even further. California Democrats recently passed a law forbidding law enforcement from asking anyone’s immigration status or holding them for Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents—unless they have been convicted of a crime. California also passed a law making it a crime for landlords to report illegals to the federal government.

cuomo

In New York, even a criminal conviction is not enough to deny illegals the protection of the state. New York’s Democratic governor Andrew Cuomo recently pardoned eighteen alien criminals—no murders, mostly thieves and drug dealers—for the express purpose of saving them from deportation back to Mexico. “These actions,” Cuomo said, “take a critical step toward a more just, more fair and more compassionate New York.”

Okay. Reality check. Illegal aliens are not immigrants. An immigrant is someone who has emigrated legally to this country through a sanctioned immigration process that has been in place since Congress passed the first naturalization law in 1790. The terrorist attacks of 9/11 affected American perspectives on many issues, including immigration. A total of 20 foreign terrorists were involved, 19 of whom took part in the attacks that caused the deaths of 2,977 victims. The terrorists had entered the U.S. on student or tourist visas. Four of these individuals had violated the terms of their visas. The attack exposed long-standing weaknesses in the U.S. immigration system that included failures in visa processing, internal enforcement, and information sharing.

The point of combining illegals and immigrants, however, is to pretend that in resisting illegal immigration, Trump and the Republicans are against the immigrants themselves. The media is complicit with the Democrats in arguing that progressives are the partisans of the poor wretched masses that have poured into this country for nearly two centuries. Democrats point out that Latinos are voting for them over the Republicans two-to-one. In their minds, this proves they are friends and protectors of immigrants. I have just one question, though. How enthusiastic would Democrats be about fighting for illegal aliens and giving them a path to citizenship if, upon securing citizenship, they started wearing Make America Great Again hats and voting Republican? Progressive affinity for illegals seems contingent upon an implicit bargain—a quid pro quo—in which Democrats secure benefits for illegals and in exchange illegals agree to become Democrats.

THE URBAN MACHINE

The urban machine was a creation of the Northern Democrats in the Jacksonian era, and it reflected Democratic power in the cities of the North. The urban plantation was characterized by the fact that it produced nothing. No products. In this respect, it was very different from the rural slave plantations, which produced cotton, sugar cane, rice, tobacco, and so on. Rural slave plantations were designed to be productive. Urban plantations were not. They were both designed as mechanisms for stealing. Yet the thefts in the two cases were different kinds. On the rural slave plantation, the theft was fairly straightforward. One man steals from another man by making him a slave. The product stolen is the slave’s labor. Larceny is effectuated by force.

The rural and urban plantations were connected closely enough that the practices of the former could be drawn upon to describe the practices of the latter. Both operated on a principle that has defined the Democratic Party since its founding: the principle of dependency.

In the urban plantation, the theft is more sophisticated, although no less profitable. The thieves on the urban plantation have a much bigger prey. Here they steal from a much larger group, one made up of the entire body of productive citizens. The target of the urban plantation is taxpayers of all income levels—anyone who contributes to the public treasury. In this scenario, Democrats promise nameless immigrants meager favors—a job reference, a place to stay, money for food—in exchange for something that doesn’t cost the immigrants anything. Their vote. Democrats then use these votes to accumulate enough political power to get their hands on as much of the public treasury as possible. Sadly, taxpayers who have paid into the system have no idea what is being done with their money. This all started in the mid-nineteenth century through the model of the urban plantation—the urban political machine—which was also an ethnic machine.

MARTIN VAN BUREN AND THE DEMOCRATIC MACHINE

MVanBuren

Contemporary  and modern accounts agree that Van Buren virtually singlehandedly created the urban political machine, and he also helped forge the winning alliance that not only propelled Andrew Jackson and then Van Buren himself to the presidency, but also sustained the Democratic Party as the majority party for forty years. Incredibly, Van Buren did all this before he became president.

We may say of Van Buren what we might say of the younger Democrat Stephen Douglas, who would rise to prominence in the 1850s: neither of them actually cared whether slavery was voted up or down. What Lincoln later said of Douglas—that he had “no very vivid impression that the Negro is a human”—would also apply to Van Buren. He was an unscrupulous man in the process of creating an unscrupulous party who would stop at nothing to take America hostage and attempt to recreate her in their own image. Van Buren’s interest in the planter class was merely political.

Starting in the mid-nineteenth century and continuing through the early twentieth, America experienced one of the largest immigrations in human history—the uprooted from Europe. Some thirty-five million people left their homelands in Europe and moved to the United States. They were running for their lives. Six million came from the region that fell to the Germans, four and a half million from Ireland, four million from Great Britain, almost five million from Italy, two million from the Scandinavian countries, three million from Greece, Macedonia and Armenia, and eight million or so more from the east: namely Poland, Hungary, Slovakia and the Ukraine. We say these individuals were immigrants, but most of them in fact were refugees. They all were fleeing something. So these were the people who washed up on the shores of the United States after permanently cutting their ties with the past.

Post WW2 Immigrants

These immigrants  faced the immediate, pressing need of finding a livelihood and of adjusting to conditions that were completely unfamiliar. In their misery, Van Buren saw a political opportunity. He knew these people well, having been a first-generation American of Dutch immigrant parents.  And seeing the starving hordes—lost souls if there ever were such people—wandering aimlessly in cities like New York, Van Buren noticed that they resembled a group that he had become quite familiar with in his travels through the South: American slaves. So Van Buren said, “Why not re-create the Democratic model of the rural plantation in the Northern cities?” In other words, why not make the new immigrants just as dependent on the Democratic Party in the North as the slaves were dependent on the Democratic planters of the South?

Obviously, the immigrants and refugees were not slaves; they could not be held by force. Also, the new immigrants were white. But the deeper point is that both groups—the immigrants and the slaves—were wretched, impoverished, helpless. Their whiteness didn’t even matter to Van Buren. He saw only a clannish solidarity—people huddled together looking for solace and assistance from fellow countrymen. Van Buren saw that the slaves, in a parallel if not similar situation, had created precisely this sort of communal solidarity to survive on the plantation. From the immigrant yearning for survival and security that he well understood, and from their collective ethnic identity that he carefully observed, Van Buren realized the possibility for creating the same type of enduring dependency he had witnessed on the slave plantation, but this time in the Northern cities. The Democratic machine demanded complete allegiance. The machine’s agenda became the immigrants’ agenda. The machine told them how to vote and required them to campaign for its entire slate during elections. Its currency wasn’t patriotism; it was party loyalty.

Piles of Cash

For Van Buren, the treasury was not a fund of tax money accumulated to finance and promote the common good; rather, it was a prize to be distributed to those who enabled politicians like Van Buren to dip their hands into the treasury. It’s as though Van Buren’s mantra was To the victor go the spoils! Politics wasn’t a vocation; it was a business. While progressives admit that the Democratic urban machines were a for-profit enterprise, thoroughly imbued with corruption and election-rigging, they insist that the bosses gave immigrants a “voice.” Yet this “voice” was nothing more than the ventriloquist preferences of the bosses themselves. Plain and simple.

Much has changed. The Democrats gave up their system of ethnic mobilization under Franklin D. Roosevelt in the 1930s, then took it up once again under Lyndon Johnson in the 1960s. Today, Democrats don’t bother to mobilize white ethnics anymore; they have moved on to other groups: blacks, Latinos, feminists, homosexuals. The old Tammany Hall regime is gone now, but what Tammany represents—the dehumanizing system of Democratic ethnic exploitation that Van Buren created—is still very much with us today.

Who is Killing America?

Flag Upside Down Tread Marks

Who is responsible for the slow death of America? Is it Donald J. Trump and the Republican party? Are they the Party of powerful, white, racist politicians determined to kill this country? First, I take issue with the claim that Republicans are a party of “white supremacists.” Looking back on the antebellum era of America, southern Democrats (led by Andrew Jackson) forged an alliance with northern Democrats for the protection of slavery. Following abolition, it was southern Democrats, not Republicans, who introduced the concept of white supremacy while terrorizing blacks with lynchings and burnings carried out by domestic terrorist groups. The most prominent of these, the Ku Klux Klan, was formed in Pulaski, Tennessee, in 1865. Originally established as a social club for former Confederate soldiers, the Klan evolved into a terrorist organization responsible for thousands of deaths and weakening of political power of the Southern blacks and Republicans.

At the time of Ulysses S. Grant’s election to the White House, white supremacists were conducting a reign of terror throughout the South. In outright defiance of the Republican-led federal government, Southern Democrats formed organizations that violently intimidated blacks and Republicans who tried to win political power. They had the full support of northern Democrats, who turned a blind eye to countless atrocities from Wilson to FDR. Today, progressive pundits attempt to conceal Democratic complicity in slavery by blaming slavery solely on the “South.” These people have spun an entire history portraying the battle as one between the anti-slavery North and the pro-slavery South. This benefits modern-day Democrats, because today their main strength is in the north and the Republicans’ main strength is in the South.

Turning Point USA Logo

In an interview with MSNBC’s Craig Melvin, conservative activist and TV host Candace Owens predicted a “major shift” of black voters away from the Democratic Party ahead of the 2020 elections. Owens—communications director of Turning Point USA—predicted that black men and women (not white middle-class women) will become the most relevant vote in the United States by 2020. “There is going to be a major black exit from the Democratic Party…” Owens said.

Melvin asked Owens, “Are you asserting that all of a sudden there are millions of new black Donald Trump supporters that we didn’t know anything about before?” Owens replied, “They weren’t Trump supporters to begin with, but we’re seeing a major shift happen… black supporters are leaving the left and going over to the right. You need to pay attention to the underground movement. And look, you’re correct to say that just because a poll says something, it isn’t right. The polls told us that Hillary Clinton was going to win and she didn’t. I wasn’t fooled by the polls. I thought that Hillary Clinton was going to lose, in the same way that I am also saying that I believe black voters are going to exit the left completely by 2020.”

No Ban No Wall

It is likely the Democratic Party will fracture into multiple parties over the next 20 to 25 years, and the Republican Party will continue to solidify. Recently, the Democrats have redoubled their efforts regarding “identity” politics. Whether it be Mexican-Americans, African-Americans, Muslim-Americans, Chinese-Americans, or any of the two-dozen hyphenated American groups out there, these ethno-religious-cultural groups have used the Democratic Party to further their group interests. What most people fail to notice is Democrats have abandoned their traditional base of working-class white voters and are instead embracing immigrant groups. The Democratic Party went from a platform of being slightly center-of-left socioeconomically and culturally (closer to conservatism) to a platform that is far left. Today, the Democratic Party supports open borders, multiculturalism, secularism, and environmentalism. Their political philosophy and social programs are rooted in pluralism. Everything is true, everyone is right, and morality is based on relativism.

ARE PROGRESSIVES THE ANSWER?

American history is a story about malefactors from the Democratic Party versus heroes from the Republican Party. Of course, progressives work hard at hiding this truth, especially in history and social studies classes in our public schools and liberal universities. Today’s progressives are well-positioned to take full advantage of the socioeconomic and moral crises in America. Ideological warfare and political paralysis can be seen running up and down the isles of Congress. Liberals typically complain about declining economic well-being among the masses, adding that too much wealth has been accumulating at the top for far too long.

Liberalism is not as deeply connected to the black experience today. Still, progressives—using the Democratic Party as their apparatus for social change—have portrayed themselves as allies of African-Americans in the midst of alleged rejection by the Republican Party. This leaves African-Americans with the unfortunate choice of voting for the left despite liberal values being disparate from their own. Black Americans have not benefited from their loyalty to the Democratic Party. In fact, the recent impact has been negative. When in power, liberals are in the position to put any number of issues first, yet the interests of the black community are currently being put last (over the interest of immigrants). Yet African-Americans continue to pledge support to Democrats.

Elephant versus Donkey

Perhaps the problem lies with definition. A conservative is “a person who is adverse to change and holds to traditional values and attitudes, usually in relation to politics,” and a progressive is “a person advocating or implementing social reform, or new, liberal ideas.” If we rely exclusively on the above textbook definitions, we’re left with the impression that Republicans are stuck in the past, whereas Democrats have fresh, new ideas for the betterment of America. President Obama delivered a speech to the Democratic National Convention in 2012, following the just-concluded Republican National Convention, wherein he essentially bashed the Republicans. Obama said Mitt Romney and his Party offered a platform that was “better suited to the last century… it was a rerun [and] it could have been on Nick At Night.”

Better World Globe in Hand

I am among the first to admit that progressives truly believe in the possibility of a “better world,” and they feel a moral responsibility to work toward achieving it. To them, it means looking at situations as neither black nor white, but to instead determine what can be changed and ought to be changed. They see the mechanisms for this change to include advocacy, social reform, and the political process. I’m being kind here. I’ve left out the progressives’ favorite tool for promoting social change—revisionist history. Progressives certainly believe we’d be a better nation if we “accept” everyone for who they are. I concur. I don’t necessarily agree with much of what has transpired in America over the past decade relative to morals and lifestyle choices—but I do believe everyone, straight or gay, male or female, Christian or non-Christian, natural-born citizen or naturalized citizen, deserve respect and unconditional love. It is important to note, however, that respecting someone does not mean agreeing with their lifestyle.

WHAT ABOUT THE BLACK COMMUNITY?

Blacks shifted en masse to the Democratic Party after the Civil Rights Act of 1964 despite the Democrats’ heavy support of segregation and Jim Crow. It is worth mentioning that the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments were achievements of the Republican Party; not a single Democrat voted for these critical amendments. When Democrats champion the “rights” of illegal aliens, and encourage the importation of cheap labor through massive immigration, who suffers most? “Free” labor led to creating such immense wealth, expansion, and material gain that it was rather easy to “disregard” the humanity of slaves. Frankly, no one should be reduced to the status of being “just a tool for making money.” Despite the total annihilation of their peace, freedom, security, families, and prospects for the future, slaves gave in to their owners in the hopes of maintaining their families and culture.

It is undeniable that the desire to garner more Democratic votes through mass immigration and free healthcare for foreign nationals has made the black constituency (12.7 percent of the nation’s population) less significant to the Democrats. Has this been noticed by the black community? You bet! A Harvard-Harris poll earlier this year found 85 percent of black Americans wanted a reduction in immigration levels to 1 million or fewer. Sooner or later blacks will leave the Democrats. Whether they join with the GOP or form a party based on racial identity is an open question.

HOW NATIONS DIE

We’ve seen countless nations come and go over the last millennium. Accordingly, it is worth discussing how nations die. Nations are sometimes wiped out through foreign conquest, as the Carthaginians were in the Punic Wars. The Roman Empire decimated one nation after another during its attempt to dominate the known world. Genghis Kahn and his merry band of Mongols stormed across the plains of Central Asia, reducing kingdoms and communities to rubble. Hitler and Stalin conspired together to obliterate Poland and share the spoils. This is a depressingly familiar pattern in history.

imperio-romano

Sometimes nations are obliterated by domestic implosion. The Romans were not destroyed merely by barbarian invasions from the North; what made Rome vulnerable was its internal rot, caused by despotism, decadence, and debauchery. The Ottomans too became the “sick man of Europe,” weakened by internal economic collapse and a decayed ruling class, long before the Empire itself was decapitated during World War I. In Europe, the fascists and the communists sought to forcibly uproot their ancestral cultures in order to create new societies and, in their view, new types of human beings.

Lincoln-portrait

Abraham Lincoln predicted in his Lyceum Address that if America ever perished it would be through internal ruin. “Shall we expect some transatlantic military giant to step the Ocean, and crush us at a blow? Never! If destruction be our lot, we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen, we must live through all time, or die by suicide.” So who in America could possibly want to kill America? Why would a country that has drawn immigrants for most of its history, and that continues to be a magnet for the world, want to take itself off the map? And what would the death of America look like? Exactly what would replace her? Frankly, it would involve the destruction and dissolution of all the things that make America distinctive. The death of America is essentially the death of American exceptionalism.

CONCLUDING REMARKS

Is America dying? Can we learn from the decline of the Roman Empire? Are there any credible comparisons? Yes, there are. The Romans were often needlessly at war with neighboring countries. Their political system became a vast money pit. Foreign investors began to take root in the Empire, ostensibly in the interest of protecting their investments. Wealthy citizens began to send their money to banks outside of the Empire. There was a great polarization between the classes, and annihilation of the middle class. In addition, Roman entertainment was chock full of violence. This led to decline in spiritual values and a breakdown of the family unit. Pleasure-seeking began to take priority over nation-building. Disputes were increasingly settled by lawsuits or revenge. Rome was a place of inflated self-importance. Additionally, religion was predominantly polytheistic and often involved outrageous ritual practices.

A nation is so much more that its laws, its political system, even its founding documents. It is first about its citizens. A nation is an “imagined community” of people who have never met each other but are linked through their common mores and mutual acceptance of each other as fellow citizens. This loyalty can run very deep in that nations, like religions, are one of the very few things that people are willing to die for. People will die for America, but they will not lay down their lives for the Philadelphia Eagles, or the United Way, or the Democratic Party.

What makes this crisis especially acute is who is perpetrating the killing of America. Unfortunately, the crime is being committed by some our fellow citizens. We could say there is a faction within our “family” of citizens that seeks to destroy the family and replace it with something else entirely different—a new family in which many of its members will feel like strangers. Some of them may have to be driven out or locked up because they no longer fit in and are perceived as a threat to the new ideology. Thomas Jefferson said, “Dependence begets subservience and venality, suffocates the germ of virtue, and prepares fit tools for the designs of ambition.”