Western Education Models Are Not Working

Here’s why …

What are your thoughts?

Posted in Society | 9 Comments

Memo for California Officials

Bringing in and harboring certain aliens, 8 U.S. Code § 1324

Any person who knowing that a person is an alien, brings to or attempts to bring to the United States any manner whatsoever such person at a place other than a designated port of entry, or place other than as designated by the Commissioner, regardless of whether such alien has received official prior official authorization to come to, enter, or reside in the United States, and regardless of any future official action which may be taken with respect to such alien …

[Who] knowing or in reckless disregard of the fact that an alien has come to, entered, or remains in the United States in violation of law, transports, or moves or attempts to transport or move such alien within the United States by means of transportation or otherwise, in furtherance of such violation of law …

[Who] knowing or in reckless disregard of the fact that an alien has come to, entered, or remains in the United States in violation of law, conceals, harbors, or shields from detection, or attempts to conceal, harbor, or shield from detection, such alien in any place, including any building or any means of transportation …

[Who] encourages or induces an alien to come to, enter, or reside in the United States, knowing or in reckless disregard of the fact that such coming to, entry, or residence is or will be in violation of law …

[Who] engages in any conspiracy to commit any of the preceding acts, or aids or abets the commission of any of the preceding actions SHALL BE PUNISHED …

… in which the offense was done for the purpose of commercial advantage or private financial gain, fined, imprisoned of not more than ten years, or both.

… during and in relation to which the person causes serious bodily injury to, or places in jeopardy the life of any person, be fined, imprisoned of not more than 20 years, or both.

… in resulting in the death of any person, be punished by death or imprisoned for any term of years, or for life, and fined, or both.

Perhaps it is time that the federal government charge state and/or local officials for these violations, particularly where there is sufficient evidence to show that enacted state and local policies or laws have resulted in death or serious injury of citizens of the United States.  What is the point of having a law such as this if the Departments of Justice or Homeland Security do not intend to exercise it?

Posted in Justice, Society | 16 Comments

From the Porch Swing

Congressional Kabuki and Normalized Deviance by Paul Webb Chapman

Japanese Kabuki Theater originated in the 1600s and grew through the years into a highly stylized form of entertainment with garish costumes and scenarios of conflict with pre-determined consequences.  Kabuki theater is accompanied by flute, drum, and strings.

Normalized deviance is a term first coined in the investigation of the 1986 NASA Challenger launch disaster.  The term was used in the context of when senior launch engineers failed to regard warnings by Thiokol booster engineers, who warned of the dangers involved with launch temperature.  In response, launch engineers noted that 27 liftoffs had been conducted successfully despite evidence of “burn through” in the booster couplings.  Deviation from safety standards became a normal practice.

Audiences easily see the mystery, conflict, and outcomes of Congress as they imitate Kabuki Theater.  Garish costumes are replaced by dark grey suits embellished with a US flag lapel button.  Congressional actors savor audience attention via outlandish claims, proving Goebbels dictum that lies told often enough become accepted truth.  That, in turn, constitutes knowledge that outcome has been previously decided while deviating from normal standards of ethical and moral comportment, all the while thinking the audience is simply far too unsophisticated to grasp the reality and failure of their political masters.

Early Kabuki Theater had a “Flower Path,” a walkway from the stage into the audience.  Today, proximity to our political actors is provided by the news media.  Other than our daily paper and local TV news, national media fail journalism’s chief duty to report hard news. Rather, “news” has become a continuing editorial that never ends.  Bystanders might wonder why the talking heads don’t get bored and report on something exciting: gardening, perhaps.

Observing politicians used to be fun.  DC scandals, while not commonplace, once reflected the light hearted high jinx of Congress.  In 1974 Wilbur Mills, a Congressman from Louisiana, had a few too many cocktails and jumped into Washington’s Tidal Pool with a stripper called “Fanny Fox, the Argentine Firecracker.”  Ohio’s Wayne Hayes hired Elizabeth Ray as a secretary who admitted she could not type. 1988 Presidential hopeful Gary Hart was playing house with Donna Rice until the fun was interrupted by media and George H. W. Bush won the election.  Sen. Bob Packwood (D-OR) would have been an early target of the “Me Too!” movement in 1995.  His indictment by the ethics committee was over 10,000 pages!

Presidents Roosevelt, Kennedy, Johnson, and now Trump are said to have philandered occasionally.

Today’s Tea Party would have loved Sen. William Proxmire (D-WI) who from time to time announced the “Golden Fleece Award” recognizing wasteful spending in Washington.  (There are many winners; two stand out: $57,800 on a study of the physical measurements of 432 airline stewardesses, paying special attention to the “length of the buttocks” and how their knees were arranged when they were seated” and $121,000, on developing “some objective evidence concerning marijuana’s effect on sexual arousal.”)

Today Normalized Deviance is reflected in Congress by the simple act of passing a timely budget/spending bill for the fiscal year.  The failure of Congress is so expected that citizens now have no faith in their elected representatives; Congressional failure has become normalized.

Yeah, it used to be fun to observe congress; now it’s just sad. One wonders why any sitting politician should be re-elected.


Posted in Society, Truth | 4 Comments

From the Porch Swing

Congress, by Paul Webb Chapman

Following WW-1 Allied victors imposed great reparation penalties on Germany, including the requirement in gold or foreign currency.  Choosing to simply print money, inflation quickly got out of hand with serious political consequences.  Stories of people bringing suitcases of money to buy a loaf of bread abound.

In a failed attempt to take over Germany in the fall of 1923 and correct its failed leadership, future leader Adolph Hitler was arrested, sentenced to five years for treason, served less than a year and using the world-wide depression of 1929 as a springboard, began his rise to power and ultimately WW-2.

Almost 100 years later the Congress of the United States, aided and abetted by Presidents of both parties, is failing its citizens and not accepting responsibility for failure.

Although the US is not at present suffering inflation seen in 1979-80 of almost 14% (or more!), Congress continues to print money with no apparent fiscal discipline.  Today, with a national income of about $3 ½ trillion dollars and a debt of $20 trillion and interest payments of $460 billion taking almost 8% of income, one wonders when the house of cards will fall.

Simply put, if a couple earns $100,000 per year, their maximum house loan will be roughly $300,000 (taking into consideration an average family debt in the neighborhood of 30-35% of income).  In other words, they could buy a house at three times the amount of their annual income.  If that ratio is good for a family, perhaps it should be an acceptable standard for our government.  As we approach a national debt six-times the nation’s annual income, Congress shuns any notion of fiscal discipline.  Remember when politicians argued that there is no tax problem —there is only a spending problem?  If only they believed it.

It is no secret that half of our population pays no or very little income tax, while the other half carries the nation’s financial burden.  Tax payers are grateful for the current tax break, but the question remains: are we drinking the same stuff as the politicians who say the benefits (forget the concurrent increase in national debt) will pay down our deficit at some point in the future?

Federal Budget watchers project that by FY 2024 (only six years away), interest payments will surpass how much the government now spends on all of its investments, including research and development, education, training, and infrastructure.  By FY 2027, interest payments will exceed defense costs.

Politicians all state concern regarding debt, they harp on the growing deficit announcing plans to erase it in a series of ten-year plans much like the old USSR’s famous plans that never seemed to work out.  “If only,” they say, “we could increase the debt by only a $trillion or so the debt will be paid in ten years.” The cost to pay it off right now is over $152,000 for each family in the US.  And increasing!

If we look at the exploding stock market, we see the big banks making money, but I do not see any of it going to paying interest on my saving account.  But the CEO gets big bucks and a bonus.

Obama and his Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner are guilty of theft, violating over a century of corporate law, took over Freddy Mac (FMCC) and Fannie Mae (FNMA), loaned auto industries millions, took over an insurance company, and made money for our government when loans were paid back.   Well, except for Freddy and Fannie.  Their profits were swept to the general fund and continue today.  Banks who trusted the US government and had stock in Freddy and Fannie were forced out of business, along with a large number of people thrown out of work.  Individuals who had trusted the US government and bought Freddy and Fannie stock at an average of $47 (or more) a share saw their investment plummet to less than $2 a share.

Our political masters promise that we need to reduce the numbers of special interest groups, clean up inefficiencies, reduce fraud in welfare and other social services.  I can’t recall much of that happening.

People are tough.  Americans can – and have withstood a multitude of extremely hard and difficult times throughout our history, from military adventurism to financial hurricanes.  I believe that, as a people, we can endure truth and the discipline required to correct the profligacy of politicians.

I encourage politicians at all levels to serve their constituencies rather than marching in lock step to a party.  The coastal elites of both parties are not good shepherds of our nation.  They are more loyal to their party than to their constituencies.  Can anyone remember the last time a budget was in place for the new fiscal year?

Finally, the nation was so fed up with traditional politicians that they elected Donald J. Trump to the presidency.  What a message!  The question is whether Washington is listening.  I think not.  They still dither about blaming each other and refuse to responsibly serve the United States.

Every school board in Texas operates with more responsiveness and effectiveness than Congress.  Washington DC should be greatly embarrassed.

Why vote for any sitting politician in the next election?  It is our fault if we continue to vote to retain the status quo.  In the end we get the government we deserve.

Posted in History, Society | 9 Comments

Public Interest

Another school shooting with tragic results.  The leftist narrative naturally focuses on the issue of guns, not the shooter.  Maybe it is time for a different focus.  Guns are not the cause of violence in schools and movie theaters; guns did not cause the attempted assassination of Congresswoman Gabby Giffords; guns were merely an instrument of terror and mayhem.  The cause of such shootings was something else entirely.

No thinking American should be surprised by mass shootings perpetrated by high-school aged teenagers.  What should surprise everyone is that there are not more of these tragedies, the cause of which are not firearms but rather the systematic over-medication of teenagers and young adults, and a system that shields the identity of individuals who pose a clear and present danger to public safety.

The numbers of people who are exactly like Jeffrey Lee Loughner, Adam Lanza, James Eagan Holmes, and Nikolas Cruz should worry us.  They are seriously disturbed young people, all of whom were treated with behavior-modifying drugs and mainstreamed in America’s public-school system.  Why we do not know who they are, or the dangers they impose until after they’ve perpetrated horrific crimes, is that their identities are protected by state and federal statutes.

Interestingly, both Holmes and Cruz obtained and used other instruments to help them perpetrate chaos at the scene of their crimes: tear gas and smoke bombs.  We should conclude from this that even though they are dangerously psychotic, they were also devilishly clever in putting together their plan for the destruction of innocents.

Let’s do some math.  Presently, there are 20 million high-school aged children.  Of these, between 6.9 and 7.2% suffer mental health issues, which include developmental delay, emotional disturbance, intellectual and mental health debilities.  The scope of behavioral abnormality is quite wide, ranging from youngsters with histories of trying to harm themselves, to harming their peers … and some of these behaviors are quite disturbing.

We don’t know who these people are, nor even the extent of their psychosis because the law protects their identities —even when the public has an interest in knowing who they are and the dangers they impose.  Yet, psychotic students are mainstreamed in public school classrooms, subjecting normal students to great risk without the knowledge of tax-paying parents.  When incidents do occur in schools, education officials cover them up or address them in such a way that no one knows who was involved or how school officials addressed the matter.

We are informed of the existence of dangerously psychotic individuals after incidents such as Sandy Hook or the Douglas High School shooting —but only after the fact, when the damage has already been done, and only then in the context of the instrument used, not the cause of the violence.  If we apply the lowest percentage of mentally impaired students in the United States today, we are faced with the potential for 1.4 million similar acts of violence.

A thinking American should ponder why this is so.  I found this video and lifted it from my friend’s blog at Always on Watch.  It is both thought-provoking and relevant.  The issue isn’t guns; the issue is that state and federal officials have decided to medicate and mainstream psychotic students rather than treating them within mental health facilities.  There is a reason for this, and it won’t provide the reader with any good feelings about our state and federal governments.

What you will not hear in the conversation about how to best protect our children is this: if the government requires us to send our children to public schools, which are little more than laboratories for progressive experimentation, then it is the government’s responsibility to protect innocent children from psychotic populations (which they nurture). If villainous students knew that teachers were trained and armed to protect student populations, schools would no longer be soft-targets for terror.

Public interest should take precedence over any right of anonymity of dangerously psychotic students in the same way that the public has a right to know where predators of children are living in their communities.

Posted in Justice, Society | 30 Comments

Merry Christmas to All …

nativity scene

Image | Posted on by | 5 Comments

Oh Church, Wherefore Art Thou?

As I have previously stated, we all have witnessed ongoing assaults upon our cultural institutions, and if you have read the previous essays in this series, you should understand not only why it has happened, but also the extent of the damage so far.  We know that part of the assault has been to force citizens to “conform” to the standards established by the communist left.  Now we will undertake to understand how the most important pillar of all is the target of leftist assaults.

Liberalism [progressivism] in religion is the doctrine that there is no positive truth in religion, but that one creed is as good as another… It teaches that all religions are to be tolerated, for all are a matter of opinion. Revealed religion [biblical Christianity] is not a truth, but a sentiment and a taste, not an objective fact, not miraculous; and it is the right of each individual to make it say just what strikes his fancy.  —Rev. John Henry Newman (1801-1890)

Money_Church-780892And so, it is.

In the quest for inclusion —a wider audience, as it were, western churches have adopted extreme liberalism, many policies of which place them in direct contravention of biblical teachings, and out of touch with their congregations.  As examples of this, one only need to look at the Episcopal, Presbyterian, and Methodist churches, whose hierarchies are becoming radically progressive.  Added to this, the National Council of Churches (NCC) overtly supports socialist and Marxist causes, including those in Cuba and other communist regimes and movements in South and Central America.  Viewing the website of the NCC, one cannot help but to notice the adoption of these liberal politics and causes, including their acceptance of the global warming/climate change scam.  Liberal church leaders are now influenced by progressive politics, academia, and media; they no-doubt believe that Jesus of Nazareth was a committed socialist and now present Him in that context.  Mark Tooley, of the Institute on Religion and Democracy, charges that the National Council of Churches is no more than a surrogate for George Soros’ Move On organization.

“Bob Edgar has declared his personal support for same-sex marriage. He and other NCC leaders repeatedly criticize fellow Christians who defend the traditional definition of marriage.  In thus fostering the impression of an evenly split U.S. Christian community, the NCC serves the interests of its ‘progressive’ yokefellows who are campaigning for the legitimization of same-sex marriage,” …

normal familyAs I wrote last week, “Marriage equality was never about social inclusiveness.  It was about abolishing marriage as one of America’s most valuable social institutions.  It was an assault on the American family.”  From that landmark judicial decision, homosexual organizations have exerted extreme pressure upon the churches to conform to this new socialist ideal.  Today, or so it appears, there are but three hold-outs to this assault: The Catholic Church, Southern Baptists, and Mormons.

Several of our church conventions have continually struggled with the homosexual contentions at their national conventions, and have so far stood by the teaching of the Bible that sodomy was a sin. But the local activities have worked out differently.  As but one example of this, one Methodist church hired a lesbian minister, who in turn officiated homosexual marriages.  Neither local parishioners nor the national convention sought to remover her from the pulpit.  The move toward liberalism in both Methodist and Presbyterian churches continues.

Both Anglican and Episcopal churches in the USA and Canada remain at odds with one another over whether to accept sodomy, the hiring of homosexual ministers, and the question of homosexual marriages.  There are even liberal movements to re-write the Bible to remove proscriptions on such things as sodomy —but the situation is actually more severe than this: some “Christian” churches have completely forsaken every aspect of the Christian faith.  They more align themselves with the Islamic belief that Jesus was a prophet, not the son of God.  They also deny the teaching of miraculous conception and embrace Darwinism as a scientific fact.

The leftist assault on religion includes removing from parents any responsibility for teaching their children about sex; this is better done, they feel, in public schools beginning in kindergarten.  Added to this, young children are now taught that homosexual unions are normal; they encourage children to engage in masturbation; they argue that oral sex isn’t actually sex.  We can thank Bill Clinton for this revelation, but unhappily, such religious organizations as the United Churches of Christ and Unitarian Universalist Churches have become willing adherents to such nonsense.

The communist assault upon American institutions continues in full force.  We now understand why so many Americans have stopped attending church on a regular basis and for the progressive left, this has become a win-win situation.  Yet, most Americans are not even aware that it’s happening.

Series Summary

  • The ideological assault on traditional American values and our institutions is evident when a large number (perhaps, even, a majority) of Americans no longer trust their governments (federal, state, or local). True, the government still works —but not for or on behalf of the American people.  It is absolutely corrupt —and politicized far beyond anything imagined by our founding fathers.  One priority of government and politicians is self-preservation, accomplished by dividing us rather than to uniting us.
  • American citizens no longer trust a judicial system that fails to hold to account illegal aliens who murder our daughters, turns a blind eye to honor killings perpetrated by Moslem parents, ignores rampant polygamy within Islamic communities, and fails to prosecute egregious political corruption.
  • Mindful taxpayers no longer trust public educational institutions to properly educate their children, or prepare them for a fruitful, meaningful life as adults. Every public funded educational facility is now a brainwashing center, a fact the American left no longer denies.
  • Physicians and psychiatrists, in cooperation with leftist policy and programs, mindlessly over-medicate our children so that, as they progress into adulthood, they become the most-useful tools for leftist propaganda and ideology. Our children’s Ritalin-infected brains are no longer able to distinguish between chicken salad and chicken shit.
  • Our churches have assimilated the leftist mantras and no longer meet the spiritual needs of our people; as a result, Americans have withdrawn from regular church attendance in increasing numbers. The result of this, not surprisingly, is an increasingly immoral society —one in which neighbors no longer have empathy for one another.  We are today more divided than at any previous period in American history; our land is filled with hatefulness —ours has become a society within which we may not even express an honest opinion without being berated into silence.  Unable to engage in a meaningful dialogue, all of us are being led down the leftist path of awfulness to a place where the communist left desperately wants us to be.
  • We have for too long accepted the notion that the federal government is in a better position to administer charitable efforts than ourselves working through local community chests. The effect of this is the distancing citizens from one another at their most desperate time.  This separation leads many Americans to conclude that charity is no longer their concern: someone else will do it —the government will do it.  The result of this is that Americans have become less self-reliant and more dependent upon federal bureaucracies whose chief aim is to maintain their well-paid positions.  Among those of us who seek to maintain our independence and liberty, which is to say, to pursue our unalienable rights, we face one challenge after another.  The complexity of our society, or rather, where we have allowed the body politic to take us, causes many of us to throw up our hands in disgust —to withdraw into ourselves, even away from our loved-ones.  The new opium of the masses isn’t drugs; it’s social media and technology, where there is never any good news.

In furtherance of the foregoing, we are able to observe several striking parallels between modern America and the greatest Republic to precede us: Rome —which, as everyone may recall, collapsed upon itself.

  • As before, our society has become immoral. Our younger generations have far too many vices, lack virtue, and, in such things as their refusal to serve their country in some capacity, demonstrate cowardice.  Even at a young age, our citizens demonstrate petty envy of their peers, lack self-discipline and control —and this becomes worse beyond middle age. We have no time for our neighbors; whatever their problems are, it’s a government problem, not ours.
  • As before, our political system is irreparably corrupted; it has become the roadway to extraordinary personal wealth and its focus is no longer the people who sent them to govern, but on the enrichment of themselves at the people’s expense.
  • As before, this nation has placed itself on a continual war footing; we are either initiating conflict, recovering from conflict, or preparing to engage in another. This is not criticism of self-defense, but the fact is that since World War II, no conflict in which the United States has become involved was waged in the defense of its people —rather, it was waged in defense of flawed government policy and interests.  It is no more than a complete waste of our country’s limited resources.
  • As before, foreign powers and interests lavish great sums of money on our Republic’s leaders; national policy has been shaped to facilitate these fortunes and few of these interests serve the American people. Even our primary sources of “news” are shaped by international corporations and what we learn from these sources is what these foreign interests want us to know.  Few in America today are wise enough to see beyond the glitter of young news readers who possess the power to shape our emotions —and do.
  • As before, our middle class has collapsed, facilitated by cheap foreign labor and a never-ending stream of illegal immigrants. The loss of jobs in modern America under Democratic administrations is unparalleled in our long history.  Politicians and their corporate cronies are the primary beneficiaries.
  • As before, the power of the American people has been significantly reduced by the gerrymandering of state and federal legislative districts, large-scale voter fraud, and special interest groups.
  • As before, our system of checks and balances, our trust in our traditional institutions, our willingness to compromise on important issues, and government’s refusal to follow the US Constitution and Bill of Rights leaves the American people angry, frustrated, and dreadfully divided.

Is there anything we can do now to save America?  The judgment is not mine alone; it is ours.  We may be able to save our institutions from systematic destruction, but only by exhibiting thoughtful analysis of what politicians say to us.  We have to vote responsibly, put the right people into positions of leadership.  The bane of America today is our political party system —it must not be allowed to rule us further.  If we are to correct this infestation of corrupt politicians and equally dishonorable citizens, we must resolve to do only those things that is right for the nation, what is right for our neighbors, what is right for our loved-ones, and only then, what is right for ourselves.  These, I believe, are the only virtues that will restore us.

Posted in Society | 11 Comments

A Sleepy America

sleepingAmericans are now waking up to the realities of the progressive politics, but is it too late?

If we are to save our unique American culture, then it will take more involvement by almost everyone.  A first step must begin among those of us who never accepted communist ideology —we must begin to push back as never before, albeit intelligently and peacefully.  It won’t be easy.  The second step will involve convincing, through rational dialogue, those who have acquiesced to the assault upon our culture.  Conversion may be possible for those who fully accepted communist tripe, but that task will be extremely difficult —not impossible, just difficult.

All of us have witnessed the assaults upon our cultural institutions, and if you read previous essays in this series, you also understand why it has happened, and the extent of the damage so far.  We know that part of the assault has been to force citizens to “conform” to the standards established by the communist left.  Here’s one quick example of conforming behavior: technological addiction to social media, where the purveyors of leftist ideology inform us, and reinforce to our children, that everything that goes on inside the cloud is okay because there is never any accountability.

How does one force another person to “conform.”  Peer pressure is one example, but one of the most successful techniques is through what Laird Wilcox[1] calls ritual defamation.

“Defamation is the destruction or attempted destruction of the reputation, status, character, or standing within a community by unfair, wrongful, or malicious speech or publication.  The central element is defamation in retaliation for real or imagined attitudes, opinions, or beliefs with the intention of silencing or neutralizing an individual’s influence.  It is essential to “make an example” of the target so as to discourage similar expressions by others.  It goes beyond simple criticism in that it is aggressive, organized, and skillfully applied—often by an organization or special interest group.

“The power of ritual defamation lies entirely in its capacity to intimidate and terrorize. It embraces some elements of primitive superstitious belief, as in a “curse” or “hex.” It plays into the subconscious fear most people have of being abandoned or rejected by the tribe or by society and being cut off from social and psychological support systems.

“The weakness of ritual defamation lies in its tendency toward overkill and in its obvious maliciousness. Occasionally a ritual defamation will fail because of poor planning and failure to correctly judge the vulnerability of the victim, or because its viciousness inadvertently generates sympathy.”  —Laird Wilcox

Who might become the victim of such tactics?

Essentially, the likely target of ritual defamation is anyone who disagrees with the political left on such cultural issues as the preservation of traditional marriage, anyone who supports merit-based immigration, anyone who calls for an end to illegal immigration, someone angered by Islamic terrorism, or anyone who doesn’t think that the American taxpayer should pay for transgender medical procedures.  These people would be classified and berated as a “—phobe” of one kind or another, which is to say an “unreasonable fear of (fill in the blank).”  We thus observe a growing trend toward ritual defamation, evident by the number of times the left accuses any conservative American of racism, Islamophobia, transphobia, or fascism.

Let’s avoid vagueness here.  There are numerous examples where the leftist press suddenly becomes aware of the alleged sexual misconduct of prominent persons seeking public office.

  • Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas comes to mind, wrongfully accused of sexual assault and the political left pulled out all stops in order to accuse him of disgusting conduct. It didn’t work in Thomas’ case, but it did leave him with a deep and enduring scar.
  • Three young men at Duke University were wrongfully accused of raping a black stripper; after months of pre-trial publicity, they were eventually found not guilty of the charges, but their reputations were forever stained as the result of spurious allegations and the prosecutorial misconduct of a leftist district attorney who wanted to demonstrate that American society is a racist society.
  • More recently, Alabama senatorial candidate Roy Moore stands accused of sexual misconduct that allegedly occurred 40 years ago. Whether there is any basis for such allegations has yet to be substantiated, but it is remarkable that the claims only surfaced a few days before state-wide elections.

For too long in this country, allegations of misconduct have been used to sully the reputations of good people.  These are examples of ritual defamation.  A just society would have laws to protect people from spurious allegations.

In an essay titled The Final 3 Phases In The Slide From Freedom to Communism, writer Stella Morabito[2] explains how the field of psychiatry has been effectively used as a weapon to force social conformity.

“Although such widespread abuse is not the case in America today, we can see signs that the political weaponization of psychiatry is growing.  Consider the LGBT lobby’s drive to outlaw any conversations in a therapist’s office that do not enforce the LGBT agenda, including imposing transgenderism on any child who claims to be transgender.  Laws that have been enacted against reparative or “conversion therapy” aim to prevent people from changing their minds about living out a homosexual orientation or a transgender identity.” —Stella Morabito

Psychiatric weaponry is a one-way street, of course, because while special interests protecting the rights of the LBGT community were able to restrict therapists from asking questions about a lesbian’s sexuality, these rules do not apply to the American Left.  CASEL’s[3] agenda toward Social Emotional Learning proposes mental health screening to school-aged children without their parent’s knowledge or consent.  Similarly, leftist politicians are demanding mental health screening for anyone who wants to purchase a firearm.  We have even witnessed leftist media declaring that Donald Trump isn’t mentally fit to serve as President of the United States.  But it is true that Mr. Trump is a white man.  Can anyone even imagine the consequence should anyone have accused Barack Obama of the same thing?

By now, all of us should begin to wonder how American society ever arrived at this position.  The answer, of course, is that most Americans are unaware of the scope and depth of policies and programs undertaken by government agencies and special interest, to change society from its cultural origins into something most desired by advocates of the progressive agenda.

In essence, Americans have been asleep.

This is no indictment of hard working people who have not the time (or inclination) to look below the surface.  Few parents today attend PTA meetings on behalf of their children above elementary school level, and so, unless their children tell them about such things as mental health screening, they simply wouldn’t know.  The political left knows that most families today include either two full time wage earners or a single parent raising children —and they’ve taken advantage of such opportunities to invade space previously reserved for families.

Nevertheless, now may be the time (or long past the time) when conservative-minded parents begin to reclaim their rights as citizens.  Less government means more freedom —and what is needed is for parents to reassert their right of self-determination —for themselves, on behalf of their children, and for their communities.  It is also time for churches, as one of our most important social institutions, to make themselves heard.

If you will return next week, I’ll pull the curtain back a little further.  Thank you for reading Thoughts from Afar.


[1] Wilcox is a scholar/archivist of extremist movements in the United States.  His books include The Practice of Ritual Defamation (1990), Nazis, Communists, Klansmen, and Others on the Fringe (with John George) (1992), and Crying Wolf: Hate Crime Hoaxes in America (1994)

[2] Stella Morabito is a senior contributor at The Federalist. Her essays have also appeared in the Washington Examiner, American Thinker, Public Discourse, Human Life Review, New Oxford Review.

[3] Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning, which states as its mission the introduction of a process through which children acquire and apply the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary to understand and manage emotions —which I imagine originates from the perspectives of the progressive left.

Posted in History, Society | 15 Comments

Farewell Dear Family

Marriage equality was never about social inclusiveness.  It was about abolishing marriage as one of America’s most valuable social institutions.  It was an assault on the American family.  It was a door opened to the intrusion of the state into matters that were once within the purview of parents.  A short review: in Obergefell v. Hodges, 576 US, the Supreme Court of the United States ruled that the fundamental right to marry is granted to same-sex couples.  It was a 5-4 decision.  Who on the court formed this majority?  Anthony Kennedy authored the majority opinion, joined by Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan —all of whom have adopted Saul Alinsky’s predicate for social progress, and are joined by such activists as journalist Masha Gessen who declared war on the concept of marriage.

Broken FamiliesThe systematic assault continues through the adoption of policies within school districts that dictate to parents what they must allow in terms of sexual education, when courts dictate to business owners the limits of their religious expressions, and when scouting organizations adopt new-gender ideology.  One begins to wonder, then, what parent would allow their child to involve themselves in scouting organizations —and the answer is the kind of parent who has surrendered to the notion that government knows best — about everything.

Most conservatives would argue that an adolescent deserves to have a childhood, but this isn’t the view of the progressive left.  American communists now insist upon such things as social emotional learning, the product of the Consortium for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL), which intends to dictate how our children should feel toward others: gay is natural, and an eight-year old has the right to become a member of the opposite sex.  What feeds such programs is identity politics, where there is no room for unique personalities and independent thought.

Now let me turn to the place where marriages take place —our churches and synagogues.  Dr. Bella Visono Dodd was a member of the Communist Party USA during the 1930s and 1940s.  Bella defected from the Communist Party in 1949, and later testified before the House Un-American Affairs Committee that one of her duties within the Communist Party was to encourage young radicals to enter Roman Catholic Seminaries.

We can associate several ideologies with this movement, including “liberation theology” and “black theology.”  Dodd’s testimony included the affirmation that high ranking church officials were targets of this Communist assault; she claimed to have encouraged 1,200 men into various seminaries.  That such efforts were (and continue to be) successful seems apparent in the attitudes and sermons associated with Jeremiah Wright, who famously preached, “God Damn America.”

But Dodd told us more than this; she identified widespread communist infiltration of labor unions, congressional staffs, presidential advisory posts.  These efforts, she asserted, including dialectical materialism, was intended to demoralize the American people to such an extent that they would one day no longer feel any sense of patriotism.

Today we find that the LGBT agenda has taken control of the Episcopal Church beginning the late 1980s; clergy adorning themselves in rainbow-clad vestments tell us an interesting tale about the success of these leftist efforts.  I would not be surprised to hear anyone from these pulpits declare that Jesus of Nazareth was himself a homosexual —and they’d no doubt get away with it because of their success so far in damaging theology and church doctrine, while concurrently undermining the American family.

The assault upon Church and family is a perfect plan; alternative theology either coopts the church community, or it has the effect of driving people away from God, and we can see the effect on families that have not raised their children to believe in God.  It is a win-win situation for leftists seeking to destroy our cultural institutions.  America is well on the way to a totalitarian state.

Return here again next week and I’ll pull the curtain back a little further.  Thank you for reading Thoughts From Afar.

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Institutional Assaults

Antonio Gramsci became the founding father of the Italian Communist Party.  Born in 1891, he founded a newspaper in 1919 called L’Ordine Nuovo (The New Order), wherein he stated that socialism didn’t go far enough because it lacked western appeal.  What was needed, he argued, was a robust communist movement focused on changing western culture—one that would require a long march through the institutions of society.  The goal would be to destroy these institutions from within society so that communism might fill the void.

Raised FistSaul Alinsky, self-styled community organizer, writer, and activist, may be best known for his work Rules for Radicals.  We may not agree with much of what Alinsky had to say, but we cannot deny that he profoundly influenced such politicians as Hillary Rodham Clinton, Barack Hussein Obama, Nancy Pelosi, and Chuck Schumer.  As with these identified politicians, Saul Alinsky was no patriot.  The only way to change American society, he argued, was to seize and hold all of America’s institutions.  Radical takeover has been going on now since the 1960s —and there is good cause to say that this conquest is nearly complete.  It is not hard to see the result of Alinsky’s and his followers’ efforts in the US military, national intelligence agencies, top law enforcement, American judiciary, media outlets, entertainment industry, and at every level of the American education system.

No American foundation has been more vigorously attacked than these institutions: family, church, and community service organizations … and it is because of the successes in destroying these foundations, American society has never been closer to achieving the so-called Mass State, which is itself needed in achieving a communist state.

We may look around us today and make the argument that communism in Russia and China was a complete disaster—and indeed, it was that— and if it was, then why should anyone fear its reemergence today?  Let’s take a look at that failure, shall we?

The creation of centralized planning required by socialist ideology necessitated an enormous concentration of power.  It would not be possible to allow the “old order” to wither on the vine; communists would require the authority to move the process forward.  Along with this authority came the ability to coerce people into giving up their private property, and then control the production and distribution of goods and services.  Famine and mass murder was the result of this authority.

The power necessary to establish and maintain communism in Russia and China in the early to mid-twentieth century attracted unscrupulous people; people not unlike any number of American politicians today who are working overtime to establish communism in the United States.  These American politicians, like Lenin, Stalin, and Mao, are willing to do whatever it takes to establish their odious ideology here in America … such as confiscating firearms so that the people cannot resist abhorrent policies.

Today’s brand of communist radical, which is to say those who are leading the assault upon America’s institutions, is one who argues that modern communism can be far different than its 19th and 20th Century model.  For example, such reasonable-sounding people will tell you that communism can work so long as a planned economy is democratic —and if the people do not like the communists who they previously elected to office, why— they can just toss the bastards out.  We might pause at this point to ask, “How’s that working out so far in American politics?”  How easy is it to get rid of someone like Senators McConnell and Schumer, or Representatives Maxine Waters and Nancy Pelosi?

A vibrant democracy requires effective resistance from the general population and from opposing political parties.  There can be no effective democracy in a one-party state —but a one-party state is precisely what American leftists are working toward.  It is not an accident that every established communist regime has suppressed opposition parties immediately after achieving power, and it is no happenstance that every communist government has stamped out its most valuable social institutions.

Return here again next week and I’ll pull the curtain back a little further.  Thank you for reading Thoughts From Afar.

Posted in History, Society | 26 Comments