Small Doses





Ezra Taft Benson said:

I have personally witnessed the heart-rending results of the loss of freedom. ... I have talked face-to-face with the godless Communist leaders. It may surprise you to learn that I was host to Mr. Khrushchev for a half-day when he visited the United States. Not that I'm proud of it. I opposed his coming then, and I still feel it was a mistake to welcome this atheistic murderer as a state visitor.

... As we talked face-to-face, he indicated that my grandchildren would live under Communism. After assuring him that I expected to do all in my power to assure that his, and all other grandchildren, will live under freedom, he arrogantly declared, in substance:

"You Americans are so gullible. No, you won't accept communism outright. But we'll keep feeding you small doses of socialism until you finally wake up and find you already have communism. We won't have to fight you; we'll so weaken your economy until you fall like overripe fruit into our hands."


Glenn Beck was doing a history of Communism and the labor unions today and in the course of that, he played a condensed clip of the speech in the video. Beck's clip lasted all of 30 seconds, but the Youtube clip is 3 1/2 minutes long. You should listen to it in its entirety. The clip is itself an excerpt from a larger speech Benson gave during his talk at BYU in 1966. It's an ominous warning then, and if you look at everything that's going on today, it's all come true.
.........................
RIP United States of America

July 1776 - November 2012.

       
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Prince of Persia: Sands of Time »

Posted on Jun 24, 2010 11:37 pm by Samson in: | 84 comment(s) [Closed]
Comments
We've been given warnings for half a century, we've known the threat was there. We know the plan has been in action for over a century. Yet even today on this very site we've got people arguing that it simply can't be so. Do we accept the threat as real only when churches are outlawed? Perhaps when Orwellian society openly exists? What extreme do we have to reach before people waken to the realization that the red scare of the McCarthyism was actually already too little too late? In 1963 congress acknowledged, for the record, that communism was trying to invade America subtly through the "Ten Planks of the Communist Manifesto", when will we? Obama is not the cause, he's just one of the more obvious symptoms, but he is part of the problem and a major indication that we, the people, have fallen to the red plan and allowed ourselves to become the victims that the communists have always expected us to become.

       
*giggle*

       
I have every reason to expect you'll see the truth for what it is soon enough Dwip, don't worry :)

       
Maybe Dwip is secretly looking forward to America being a communist state?

       
Who knows, maybe he'd like to elaborate on what he thought was so funny.

       
Well it wont be long before China owns the USA due to credit default, so, i guess, the USA becoming a communist state is kind of plausible. Yall better start brushing up on your Mandarin. 你好我的共产主义兄弟.

       
Sarah's up for the week, so I don't really have a lot of time or inclination to spend a lot of time debating something quoted by Glenn freaking Beck of all people, but:

Let us suppose that we have a line. On the right over here is that apparently most sainted of conservative historical periods, the Gilded Age. Somewhere in the middle, perhaps just over the line to the left, is what we have. Somewhat further over there to the left is European-style social democracy. Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay the hell off over there to the left, over the hill, through the woods, don't take the turnoff to grandma's house and keep going for a while, is real, actual communism, with real actual communist things, like suppression of religion (not happening), Great Leaps Forward (also not happening), and collectivization of agriculture and industry (see previous). Now, I suppose you could make fairly bullshit arguments about the purges and show trials, but the key word in there is bullshit.

Which is to say that when they start collecting people from the bread lines to take them out and be shot so they can redistribute their land, come talk to me. Until then I'm going to stick with the position I've always taken every time this particular subject comes up, which is that this particular line of thinking is so self-obviously wrong that the only possible thing to do is laugh at the wrongness of it.

       
which is that this particular line of thinking is so self-obviously wrong that the only possible thing to do is laugh at the wrongness of it.


Because fear and hyperbole is so much easier to follow then the right and righter politics found in the USA. I think the citizens of the USA would truly shit their collective pants if they had a true left rather than the not as republican right as the right Democratic party.

       
Edited by The_Fury on Jun 25, 2010 10:08 pm
I get it. Glenn Beck says it, so you're not even going to consider he's right. Ok. Noted for the future the next time one of you guys quotes a leftist lunatic and expects me to actually take the guy seriously.

All you've done is demonstrate you have a deep seated bias in favor of anything said by the left wing media.

       
Edited by Samson on Jun 25, 2010 10:23 pm
Ah...no.

Two things here:

1. Glenn Beck is so completely crazy about so many things that there's a pretty good chance that any given thing he says will also be crazy. Such as, for example, this.

2. That said, if one examines the argument by itself without regards to the author or the deliverer, the actual argument is completely whack on its own merits or lack thereof.

And look, I don't need media, left wing, right wing, or straight up and down wing to tell me anything on the subject. I've got 15 years and a degree in history under my belt, and I'm perfectly capable of evaluating sources and discerning historical fact via primary and secondary sources. I'm no expert, but I'm reasonably well-versed in such things as the history of American labor, Chinese and Soviet communism, the Gilded Age as a whole, and a few other topics besides. Which I suppose makes me some kind of ivory tower liberal elitist, but there you go.

But never mind that. It seems to me pretty self-obvious that when you compare the policies of Obama versus the policies of such famously communist presidents as LBJ or FDR, versus the policies of actual communist states, you realize that not only is what we have not communism, it's not even as left-leaning as some of what we had in the past. What we have today isn't even in the same league as what Lenin and Mao did.

       
a degree in history under my belt


With all due respect, tear that thing up and burn it. Seriously. whatever that leftist school you went to taught you is almost certainly wrong, and you're irrational bias against Glenn Beck is giving me a headache. This coming from someone who has told me to see past my own biases and listen to some of the things the other side has to say once in awhile. Well, why not take some of your own advice?

If you don't like the stuff Glenn usually discusses, watch the Friday episodes instead where he goes through the history of our founding and digs up information about our founding fathers that nobody even knew existed because the progressives have deleted it from history instruction.

ivory tower liberal elitist,


Perhaps not yet, but seriously, now that you're out of the indoctrination system, go look some of this stuff up in sources the school either didn't approve of or didn't know about. You're going to find that things are not as they've been cast.

What we have right this second may not be full blow communism, but we're definitely well past the marker point for socialism. Nationalized banks, nationalized auto companies, nationalized housing market, nationalized healthcare, soon to be nationalized internet if they have their way, forced redistribution of wealth, it's all here already. Right now. Including the crippling debt that always goes with socialistic policy.

It may not have been entirely imposed by Obama and the Dems, but they've been working toward this ever since the Wilson administration. Actually, since you've never watched Glenn's show, you aren't aware that he's freely admitted the Dems have lost control of their own party and have now been overrun by the progressives. He's even flat out said the Repubs have been partially overrun. It's all right there, and I dare you to be able to prove anything he says on his show wrong.

America is the frog in a boiling pot. Kruschev was right, we wouldn't go for an immediate switch, because we'd have jumped out. We simply have not noticed the water getting hot and we're about to be cooked alive.

       
No, it's still far from Lenin or Mao, but it's steadily progressing there. Just because we've had even worse in the past doesn't change the cumulative effect of the present combined with the past and the likely future based on the direction of the present.

       
Also, to engage with Benson and Conner directly, this whole "THEY'RE COMING FOR THE CHURCHES OH GOD NO ATHIESM AAAAAAAAA" thing is completely bogus, on the level of a straw man. Or would it surprise you to know that in Benton County, Oregon, supposedly the least churchgoing county in the whole nation, I've personally witnessed people going to church and proseletyzing on the public sidewalk? And I've seen the same in that bastion of liberal elitism, urban Connecticut? Even at that institutional pillar of liberal elitism, Yale? And, what's more, they weren't then sent to gulags for it, or shot?

Because I can tell you how it goes in communist societies, and it's a whole lot more towards the shooting end of the spectrum.

       
Again, Dwip, you know perfectly well that the anti-church aspect is only one very minor aspect of communism. Frankly, even at the height of communism in Russia my religion was still quite strongly practiced. That's not the real issue, it's the subtle directing of our state policies and national practices toward communism.

       
They key here being subtle. Subtle enough that the younger generations don't realize what it is, and the older generations only realize what's happened after it's too late for them to put a stop to it.

Of course, there's a wildcard here. Push too far, too fast (as Van Jones now wants to) and you risk triggering violence. Sadly, I'm now entirely convinced that the only way the course we're on now will end is by way of civil war. There's going to initially be one or two states who declare they've had enough and will secede. In the current climate, my prediction is Texas followed by Arizona, with Montana possibly close behind them.

All 3 states have recently sent signals that they're tired of the way the feds are abusing their authority. Arizona with its immigration situation, Montana with their recent law on in-state gun sales, and Texas with the killings along the border and with the recent restoration of accurate history in the school system. I suspect before long Louisiana is going to join them when Jindal gets tired of being told to stop trying to build sand burms to block more oil from getting into the wetlands.

All the while, Obama sits in the Whitehouse trying to exploit the spill to get Cap & Tax passed, or cooking up schemes to hold border security enforcement hostage. He no longer needs to play games to pass healthcare since he and Congress defied the will of 70% of the population.

November 2010 can't get here fast enough. I firmly believe this is our last chance to solve this crisis without bloodshed. If the Republicans don't take back both houses of Congress, we're completely fucked. 2012 is too far away to make much difference now. If we lose, whether I can afford it or not, I'm going to arm myself for what's coming. I'd be a fool not to considering where I live.

       
Note: typing in the dark is hard. Other people in the house make this hard.

Samson said:

With all due respect, tear that thing up and burn it. Seriously. whatever that leftist school you went to taught you is almost certainly wrong, and you're irrational bias against Glenn Beck is giving me a headache. This coming from someone who has told me to see past my own biases and listen to some of the things the other side has to say once in awhile. Well, why not take some of your own advice?


As it happens, my professors crossed the spectrum. Guy who taught me Greek and Roman history also had a fair bit of bias towards the cultural supremacy of Christianity. Guy who taught me modern China happened to have a fairly deep amount of sympathy for Mao, but was nonetheless harshly critical of all things communist. Guy who taught me Stalinism was not by any means a Stalinist himself.

Which is to say that their opinions, insofar as they were shared in the classroom, differed enormously. It should also go without saying that my conclusions on matters also differed, quite often a very great deal, from theirs.

Which leads to the point that my opinions are my own and not those of some nebulous institution, and furthermore the point behind noting the 15 years thing is to say that I've hardly sat idle and absorbed things, which in any case won't get you far at all, but that I've read fairly widely. The Federalist Papers, other writings by the Founders, a fair bit on pre-modern capitalism, Marx and Engels, Howard Zinn, Kipling, Julius Caesar, Lincoln, and a fair bit about them and their times as well. The Marx was unpersuasive, as was the Stalinist propaganda. Somehow I've remained anti-communist while also being entirely unconvinced by the benevolence and ultimate power of the unrestrained free market. Like any scholar worthy of merit, I've absorbed sources of information of various stripes and come to my own conclusions.

Which, to bring it back to my original point in all this, is to say that there is in fact a very broad amount of space between actual communism and Obama (or me) and unrestrained libertarianism for lack of a better term, and that taking a position on that spectrum slightly more left on that spectrum is not the same as going straight down the slippery slope fallacy towards the whole hog.

I don't much feel like arguing each and every specific policy with you, because that could go on for days and we've done it before, and I don't really feel like getting into the weeds on the presidency of Woodrow goddamn Wilson (fun fact: sent troops to fight the Bolsheviks!) or guys like Harry Truman (supported the UN! Fought communism!), but I will say that having watched fiscal reform efforts over the past couple of decades, it does interest me that most of the opponents of sane ways to do that have been conservatives.

Now, as to Beck. I'll freely admit that I don't watch much Beck, usually clips and excerpts from elsewhere. That's not unique to Beck - I don't own a TV, don't watch much of anything except Stargate: Universe (agh, the cliffhanger season ending! Agh!), get most of news and commentary via print. Such Beck as I have seen does not fill me with confidence as to his status as a purveyor of truth as opposed to conspiracy theory.

If you'd like me to watch and debate an ep, I'd be happy to perform the experiment, given an ep to watch, but.

Which is not to say that I don't read generally conservative sources, because I actually do, and listen to what they have to say. I just happen to think most of them are wrong a lot of the time, just as I think liberals are wrong on a great many things as well (TARP for one, the war for another).

Point that I've tried to make repeatedly is that not only do I not see a similar engagement on your part with (or for that matter any engagement with) liberal sources except to ad hominem them with the word liberal (or progressive or communist as you like), it's excessively difficult to even get you to assume any kind of basic good faith on the part of any Democrat or liberal, wrong though you think they may be.

Edit: And it's now 3+am and I can't see my keyboard. Time for bed.

       
Edited by Dwip on Jun 26, 2010 12:14 am
Such Beck as I have seen does not fill me with confidence as to his status as a purveyor of truth as opposed to conspiracy theory.


If all you've seen are snips and clips of Beck, you're passing judgment on him unfairly. I will say again, pick any one of his Friday episodes from 2010. They should be marked as "Founders Fridays" or something similar. His website probably has links to them, but if not, surely transcripts. I don't hang around his website because it's a disorganized mess (as are most of these commentators' sites) so I can certainly understand if it ends up being hard to find something. You not owning a TV is going to make this monumentally difficult.

it's excessively difficult to even get you to assume any kind of basic good faith on the part of any Democrat or liberal


Well, sorry, but a life's experience of irrational policy being repeatedly passed by people who call themselves Democrats will do that to you. I will remind you once more I live in California, and as you are no doubt aware, we have our own special breed of progressives here that think the only solution to anything is insane taxation and an unrestricted open border with Mexico. It becomes extremely difficult to listen to any of them speak on a subject because 99% of the time all they know how to do is argue for taxes, and when you prove them wrong, they resort to calling you a racist. There isn't much point in trying.

Unfortunately, as I see it, California progressivism has infected a large portion of the rest of the country. Family and friends who live in the New England area have all but confirmed that first hand. May as well write off the entire Atlantic seaboard north of Virginia at this point. You could draw a line and just declare them a new country and solve a whole lot of problems.

That in mind, you can probably understand why I'm not inclined to pay any serious attention to anything a Democrat/liberal/progressive says. You already know I lean heavily conservative as far as fiscal policy and I lean heavily libertarian on social policy with some obvious exceptions. I've been there, done that, and have made up my mind. I think I'm entitled to have done so whether or not I went and got my own ivory tower elitist papers.

Glenn Beck happens to be the one media figure out there right now who most closely matches my belief system. Keith Olbermann could give the greatest speech of all time but I'm still not going to be convinced by his retarded progressive stance.

       
The funny thing is, I am likely to be the only true leftist here and even then, i am not all that left, like Dwip, i am all for regulated free markets and the reason is simple, without rules to guide business, they will do whatever they like to line their own pockets at the expense of the masses, such is the nature of greed.

Where we start to differ and where i am always at odds with Samson and Conner is the roll of the state, in which i believe that the states roll is to provide better outcomes for all its citizens, not just those who have the money to pay for lobbyists who buy time with officials to spruce their wares. Sadly, it seems more and more that what is good for Monsanto Corp holds more weight that what is good for Joe Shmow.

       
insane taxation


Whats do you consider to be too high? I pay 10% tax on every transaction i make and pay 45 cents in the dollar on income earned and i think often that, that is too low and could easily be lifted to 50 cents. But then i earn a lot and live simply and do not really care for money and greed.

       
Sales tax where I live is 9% and that's too high. Keep in mind California also has excessively high income taxes (by US standards) as well as property taxes. If you could prove that the government spent the money responsibly then I wouldn't complain too much about 10% state sales tax. Provided of course all the other taxes were abolished.

I don't however believe in income tax at all. That shit needs to be abolished because all it is is state sponsored theft. The founders knew this. Although they didn't specifically mention it:
Article 1, Section 8 said:

The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;

Excise in particular is interesting since that's basically a sales tax (or VAT). I'm pretty sure I've mentioned it before, but I'd have no problem paying a 15% sales tax at the federal level - provided *ALL OTHER FORMS* of taxes were abolished and there was no means to increase this tax except by a 2/3 majority of both houses of Congress. That means no death tax, no medicare tax, no social security tax, no gambling winnings tax, no income tax, no property tax etc. JUST a national sales tax.

I'm sure you are smart enough to know this will never happen because the Dems will never go along with abolishing their cash cows in favor of a sane system like that. Either at the state or federal level. I envy states where the voters have been able to keep income taxes off the books, I really do. It's just too bad the progressives managed to get our Constitution amended in 1913 to impose income tax at the federal level.

       
How then do you expect to pay for everything? The USA enjoys relativity low taxation as a % of GDP, but has some extraordinary levels of governmental debt. So, how do you propose to pay for everything that is currently in governmental budgets and or what things are you going to cut? Because you just cant have it both ways, pay no tax and expect to have government services, police, military, schools etc, these things and many others will not pay for themselves with wishful thinking.

       
Edited by The_Fury on Jun 26, 2010 2:00 am
Several states do all that without income taxes. They tend to have far less debt, don't generally run deficits, and they have plenty of police and good schools.

California is not one of these places. We have massive debt, crushing taxation on both people and corporations, shit schools, and weak police forces. Income, property, and sales taxes are never enough. The state legislature is always looking for MORE ways to tax people, rather than sensibly restricting their budget.

As far as the federal government, the only valid thing on your particular list of things to spend on is the military. Education, police, and "government services" are not part of their Constitutional authority. So if it were up to me, everything other than their enumerated powers in Article 1, Section 8 would be going bye bye. A budget which adheres to the Constitution is easily sustainable on 15% national sales tax.

       
To me, it would seem that the system is broken, one country that acts as 51 separate ones can only every lead to have's and have nots, which, it seems to me to be the case as well as many extra layers of bureaucracy that are not needed and wasteful.

Here, states have limited powers and taxation mostly revolves around things like licensees and motor vehicle registrations and a few other similar things, all the real taxation is federal, sales tax, fuel excise, cigarette excise, corporate tax, income tax. The federal government then funds the states to run things like schools, hospitals, police and the like which are state matters.

There is very little difference from state to state in the amount of taxes you pay, sales tax is 10% (gst/vat) it can only be changed via referendum, the states cannot create taxes however they feel like, in fact there is little opportunity for the states to create any new taxes at all. Property tax im guessing thats like what we call Rates, home owners pay that to local governments for the up keep of sewers and water treatment, local parks and community facilities. Each of the 3 layers has clearly defined rolls, and pretty much all the funds flow from federal to state to local governments.

We could likely do with one less level of government, and if we ever become a republic, i think that is something that will happen, state government will get wiped out and local government will become more regional in scope, but again, all the real power will remain federally.

       
I can see my keyboard again. Woo.

1. Any possible Beck viewing will be Not Now, as Sarah being here trumps most other concerns.

2. I don't really care to get into taxation, because I think you know where I stand, and basically what Fury said in any case. I will say, however, that while I'm heavily sympathetic to Fury's argument in the last post with respect to the power of local versus state versus federal governments, and if you spend enough time arguing politics with me you'll know that I don't have a ton of respect for the state governments, two things: 1) I think once you get to our population levels (over 10x Australia's), you need that extra governmental layer; 2) A direct local/federal bifurcation would be even worse than it is now, because if you think the states are bad, local governments are so very often utterly bugfuck crazy one way or the other.

Samson said:

That in mind, you can probably understand why I'm not inclined to pay any serious attention to anything a Democrat/liberal/progressive says. You already know I lean heavily conservative as far as fiscal policy and I lean heavily libertarian on social policy with some obvious exceptions. I've been there, done that, and have made up my mind. I think I'm entitled to have done so whether or not I went and got my own ivory tower elitist papers.


So, ok. Couple things here.

1. I'm well aware of the mess that CA finds itself in, and of the crazed nature of many of its politicians. However: the world is not California, on the one hand, and Dems/libs aren't a monolithic block by any stretch of the imagination, and on the other hand the behavior holds true when I quote conservatives at you as well, like Sullivan or Frum.

What I think I'm trying to get at is this. We've been arguing politics for a good long while, and you can correct me if I'm wrong here, but as I see it you think I'm basically wrongheaded but ultimately have the best interests of the country at heart. As best I can figure I'm about the only liberal (and I'm not particularly all that far left) that gets that courtesy. What I'm saying is that the basic presumption on the part of random other liberals would go far.

Which is also to say that I have a lot more time for reasoned engagement with arguments over random ad hominem, which is where we're at.

2. As far as my own education goes, two things. First, I can assure you that Oregon State is hardly a bastion of liberal academia, believe you me. For that matter, I find the trashing of college degrees in general puzzling and troublesome, but. Second, the point in bringing up my education is to say that I have, in fact, thought and read broadly on the issues of the day, and that my opinions are formed by that engagement, as opposed to some random dude on TV as you were implying. I'm not trying to say that everybody has to have a college degree, here. Ultimately, of course, I think we're all better served if we all do some measure of serious historical inquiry, using works by serious scholars (as opposed to media personalities, etc), but that's somewhat besides the point I was trying to make here.

3.
Bottom Tag said:

If you disagree with what we've said, speak up! Participate in the debate!


The problem with that, of course, is that if you've already made up your mind, and you're unwilling to even listen to what the other side has to say, then we're not having a debate, we're talking into an echo chamber, and the whole point of the blog is lost.

Conner said:

Again, Dwip, you know perfectly well that the anti-church aspect is only one very minor aspect of communism. Frankly, even at the height of communism in Russia my religion was still quite strongly practiced. That's not the real issue, it's the subtle directing of our state policies and national practices toward communism.


And Stalin even trotted out religion during the Great Patriotic War. Yes. Which does not in any way repudiate the fact that the Soviets bulldozed churches, killed and jailed priests, and did all sorts of other things, and that if anything the Chinese were even worse about it. You can't say that we're anything like close to that here, nor is anybody even talking about it.

Which is to say that if we're going to convince me of the vast communist-athiest conspiracy to destroy religion, I'm going to need some fairly serious examples to back that claim up.

       
Dwip said:

Ultimately, of course, I think we're all better served if we all do some measure of serious historical inquiry, using works by serious scholars (as opposed to media personalities, etc)


So, just suppose for one moment the possibility that the serious scholars you're implying we use got it wrong. Or worse, that they actively engaged in revisionism and buried the real truth. Would you still propose using their works as a basis for argument if a media personality had brought forth evidence that this was the case? Believe me, I know what that sounds like.

Beck will be the first to admit to you what that sounds like, but he's brought forth mountains of evidence to back up his case and he's not just pulling it out of his ass like a lot of other commentators on both sides do. His Mon-Thrus shows go into an awful lot of detail about a variety of subjects and he brings in the source materials. He is also diligent about making sure you hear the progressive/communist words from the mouths of the very people who spoke them. These people are not hiding their intentions one single bit.

His Friday shows since January have been less about the evils of socialism and more about what our founders actually said and did, along with a lot of information that we simply have not been taught in public schools and very often not even in paid universities. He's got audience members who you can tell are sitting in awe at information they're only just now hearing - ever.

So I guess the point I'm making is that Glenn Beck *IS* making serious historical inquiry, and he *IS* using the works of serous scholars to do that. He just happens to be a right-wing media personality with access to a large media institution to aid him in doing that.

What I'm saying is that the basic presumption on the part of random other liberals would go far.


You mean like Joe Lieberman? I think if you'll look back I've mentioned I'd have no problem with someone like him being president. I doubt I'd be happy with a lot of what he wants, but my main concern with being president is that you're right in the head when it comes to foreign policy, and he's at least that. That's not Obama, it wasn't Clinton, and it certainly wasn't Carter.

The big problem with "other random liberals" is that the ones in power, or with influential media positions, all present as lunatics. Those are the ones I have no interest in listening to because everything they say is counter to the country's best interests.

Which is to say that if we're going to convince me of the vast communist-athiest conspiracy to destroy religion, I'm going to need some fairly serious examples to back that claim up.


I think the main point we're making here is that we're on that road. We obviously have not arrived at the killing and maiming stages yet, but Mao didn't wake up one day and butcher 20 million people, and Stalin didn't just kill 50 million people on a whim. It took time for both of them to reach that point, and all the signs are here now pointing to our own country heading toward the same point. Obama isn't there yet, but why should we allow him the opportunity to drag us that much closer to the next person who is? Just take one look at all the crazy people he surrounds himself with as advisers.

       
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