Category Archives: Christianity

Excerpts from Mother Teresa’s Dairy

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One day I met a lady who was dying of cancer in a most terrible condition. And I told her, I say, “You know, this terrible pain is only the kiss of Jesus — a sign that you have come so close to Jesus on the cross that he can kiss you.” And she joined her hands together and said, “Mother Teresa, please tell Jesus to stop kissing me.”

[….]

My smile is a great cloak that hides a multitude of pains. [People] think that my faith, my hope and my love are overflowing, and that my intimacy with God and union with His will fill my heart. If only they knew.

[….]

I feel that God does not want me, that God is not God, and that God does not exist.

[….]

I am told God loves me—and yet the reality of darkness and coldness and emptiness is so great that nothing touches my soul.

[….]

Heaven means nothing.

— Mother Teresa’s dairy

Pope Francis and General Videla

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Pope Francis giving communion to General Videla, the leader of the fascist generals who ruled Argentina in the late 1970s (and disappeared more than 20,000).

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Dirty Wars: Pope Francis’ Ties to Argentina’s Right-wing Junta

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The Catholic Church was complicit in Argentina's Dirty War, between 1976 and 1983, in which up to 30,000 people were 'disappeared' by the rightwing military junta.

The Catholic Church was complicit in Argentina’s Dirty War, between 1976 and 1983, in which up to 30,000 people were ‘disappeared’ by the rightwing military junta.

Democracy Now! reports this morning:

While praised for his work with the poor, Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio — now Pope Francis — has long been dogged by accusations of his role during Argentina’s military dictatorship. We speak to Horacio Verbitsky, a leading Argentine journalist who exposed Francis’ connection to the abduction of two Jesuit priests. Verbitsky is an investigative journalist for the newspaper Página/12, or Page/12, and head of the Center for Legal and Social Studies, an Argentine human rights organization.

* * *

Doug Saunders reporting in Canada’s Globe & Mail:

[…] Much of the attention centers around two Jesuit priests, Orlando Yorio and Francisco Jalics, who were kidnapped by government forces on May 23, 1976, imprisoned for five months at clandestine detention center, tortured, and later found lying drugged and semi-naked in a field.

Days before their disappearance, according memoirs and statements made later by the priests, they had been dismissed from the Jesuit order by Father Bergoglio for having ministered to residents of the slums, which were considered hotbeds of Marxist agitation. Kicking the priests out of the order is seen by many Argentines as a move that, in the polarized climate of the Junta, may have served as a clear signal to the military dictatorship that they were to be targeted.

The Spanish newspaper El Pais quotes from a 1995 memoir by Father Jalics, who now lives in Germany, in which he accuses Father Bergoglio of betraying them.

“Many people who held far-right political beliefs frowned on our presence in the slums,” the priest writes. “They thought we were living there in support of the guerrillas, and set out to denounce us as terrorists. We knew which way the wind was blowing, and who was responsible for these slanders. So I went to [Father Bergoglio] and explained that they were playing with our lives. He promised that the military would be told that we were not terrorists. But from subsequent statements by an officer and 30 documents that we were able to access later, we saw without doubt that [Father Bergoglio] had not kept his promise but, on the contrary, had filed a false complaint with the military.” []

* * *

Pope Francis (left) with Jorge Videla, head of the rightwing fascist Argentine Junta, responsible for the death, disappearance and torture of tens of thousands of Argentines in its 'Dirty War'

Pope Francis (left) with Jorge Videla, head of the rightwing fascist Argentine Junta, responsible for the death, disappearance and torture of tens of thousands of Argentines in its ‘Dirty War’

And Uki Goni and Jonathan Watts reporting in The Guardian today:

Pope Francis: Questions Remain Over His Role During Argentina’s Dictatorship

Despite the joyful celebrations outside the Municipal Cathedral in Buenos Aires yesterday, the news of Latin America’s first pope was clouded by lingering concerns about the role of the church – and its new head – during Argentina’s brutal military dictatorship.

The Catholic church and Pope Francis have been accused of a complicit silence and worse during the “dirty war” of murders and abductions carried out by the junta that ruled Argentina from 1976 to 1983.

The evidence is sketchy and contested. Documents have been destroyed and many of those who were victims or perpetrators have died in the years that followed. The moral argument is clear, but the reality of life at that time put many people in a grey position. It was dangerous at that time to speak out and risk being labelled a subversive. But many, including priests and bishops, did so and subsequently disappeared. Those who stayed silent have subsequently had to live with their consciences — and sometimes the risk of a trial.

Its behavior during that dark period in Argentine history was so unsaintly that in 2000 the Argentine Catholic church itself made a public apology for its failure to take a stand against the generals. “We want to confess before God everything we have done badly,” Argentina’s Episcopal Conference said at that time.

In February, a court noted during the sentencing of three former military men to life imprisonment for the killings of two priests that the church hierarchy had “closed its eyes” to the killing of progressive priests.

As head of the Jesuit order from 1973 to 1979, Jorge Bergoglio – as the new pope was known until yesterday – was a member of the hierarchy during the period when the wider Catholic church backed the military government and called for their followers to be patriotic.

Bergoglio twice refused to testify in court about his role as head of the Jesuit order. When he eventually appeared in front of a judge in 2010, he was accused by lawyers of being evasive. []

Source

Excommunicated Westboro Baptist Church member suggests Fred Phelps might be gay

Lauren Drain was thrown out of the Westboro Baptist Church five years ago (Image: NOH8)

Lauren Drain was thrown out of the Westboro Baptist Church five years ago (Image: NOH8)

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A former member of the adamantly homophobic Westboro Baptist Church, also know as the ‘God Hates Fags’ church, has spoken out about the church’s controversial leader, and said that she thought he could be gay.

Lauren Drain, 27, became a member of the Westboro Baptist Church at age 15 when her father relocated her family to Kansas in order to join the church and live in its compound.

At first she accepted the extremely anti-gay teachings of the church and its leader, Fred Phelps. The church is known for its belief that the majority of people will go to hell, and for its pickets at the funerals of soldiers and victims of disasters in which members carry signs reading “God Hates Fags” and other inflammatory statements.

Although she originally attended pickets and supported the Westboro Baptist Church, Ms Drain began to question their teachings and was subsequently cast out at the age of 22.

Speaking in an interview with the Advocate, Drain speculated that Fred Phelps had at one point wanted to join the military, but suddenly changed his mind.

She said: “All I know is that he said he went to West Point, then all of a sudden he had a religious experience, and now he wanted to preach against sexual immorality, preach against the military, and ever since then things have kind of progressed.”

Drain went on to say that she thought his reaction to being asked by the media if he was gay himself was suspicious, in that it was particularly extreme.

“I never understood why, when [he was asked by the press], ‘Why are you so against the homosexuals? Did you have a homosexual experience? Do you have homosexual tendencies?’ And he would get so mad, he would shut down. And he’d be like, ‘I can’t talk to this person anymore, they’re stupid.’

“His reaction to that was stronger than any other question you can ask him. So I always wondered that — why does he get so mad? If I’m not gay, I’ll just say I’m not gay.”

She went on to say that speculating on the matter was all she could do, as she didn’t know the true reason for his reaction to those questions.

She said: “But something happened, and something made him change his mind about the military, and in turn have kind of a crusade against sexual immorality and homosexuals.”

In February, two granddaughters of Phelps quit the organisation, and expressed regret at “inflicting pain on others” whilst still members. 

Back in 2010, the son of Fred Phelps has broke his silence and begun to publicly speak about his relationship with his estranged father, after also quitting the church.

The church infamously attempts to picket the funerals of those deemed “fag-enablers”, including military funerals for US service members.

In a strange turn of events in December, the Ku Klux Klan stepped in to counter a protest by the Westboro Baptist Church, at a military funeral.  

The church had also announced that it intended to picket the funerals of the children killed at Sandy Hook elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut to worldwide outrage.

Also in December, the hackers collective, Anonymous, continued its battle with the church, and claimed to have changed the desktop background on its spokeswoman’s computer to gay porn, and filed a death certificate on her behalf, stopping her from using her social security number. 

Source

V.I. Lenin on Religion

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Religion is the opium of the people—this dictum by Marx is the corner-stone of the whole Marxist outlook on religion. Marxism has always regarded all modern religions and churches, and each and every religious organisation, as instruments of bourgeois reaction that serve to defend exploitation and to befuddle the working class.”

– V.I. Lenin, “The Attitude of the Workers’ Party Towards Religion”

[…] under no circumstances ought we to fall into the error of posing the religious question in an abstract, idealistic fashion, as an “intellectual” question unconnected with the class struggle, as is not infrequently done by the radical-democrats from among the bourgeoisie. It would be stupid to think that, in a society based on the endless oppression and coarsening of the worker masses, religious prejudices could be dispelled by purely propaganda methods. It would be bourgeois narrow-mindedness to forget that the yoke of religion that weighs upon mankind is merely a product and reflection of the economic yoke within society. No number of pamphlets and no amount of preaching can enlighten the proletariat, if it is not enlightened by its own struggle against the dark forces of capitalism. Unity in this really revolutionary struggle of the oppressed class for the creation of a paradise on earth is more important to us than unity of proletarian opinion on paradise in heaven.”

– V.I. Lenin, “Socialism and Religion”

That is the reason why we do not and should not set forth our atheism in our Programme; that is why we do not and should not prohibit proletarians who still retain vestiges of their old prejudices from associating themselves with our Party. We shall always preach the scientific world-outlook, and it is essential for us to combat the inconsistency of various “Christians”. But that does not mean in the least that the religious question ought to be advanced to first place, where it does not belong at all; nor does it mean that we should allow the forces of the really revolutionary economic and political struggle to be split up on account of third-rate opinions or senseless ideas, rapidly losing all political importance, rapidly being swept out as rubbish by the very course of economic development.”

– V.I. Lenin, “Socialism and Religion”

“[Engels polemicized against those who] gave prominence to religious divisions rather than political divisions, and diverted the attention of some sections of the working class and of the other democratic elements away from the urgent tasks of the class and revolutionary struggle to the most superficial and false bourgeois anti-clericalism. Accusing the would-be ultra-revolutionary Dühring of wanting to repeat Bismarck’s folly in another form, Engels insisted that the workers’ party should have the ability to work patiently at the task of organising and educating the proletariat, which would lead to the dying out of religion, and not throw itself into the gamble of a political war on religion.”

– V.I. Lenin, “The Attitude of the Workers’ Party Towards Religion”

“[…] Engels frequently condemned the efforts of people who desired to be “more left” or “more revolutionary” than the Social-Democrats, to introduce into the programme of the workers’ party an explicit proclamation of atheism, in the sense of declaring war on religion. Commenting in 1874 on the famous manifesto of the Blanquist fugitive Communards who were living in exile in London, Engels called their vociferous proclamation of war on religion a piece of stupidity, and stated that such a declaration of war was the best way to revive interest in religion and to prevent it from really dying out. Engels blamed the Blanquists for being unable to understand that only the class struggle of the working masses could, by comprehensively drawing the widest strata of the proletariat into conscious and revolutionary social practice, really free the oppressed masses from the yoke of religion, whereas to proclaim that war on religion was a political task of the workers’ party was just anarchistic phrase-mongering.

Religion must be declared a private affair. In these words socialists usually express their attitude towards religion. But the meaning of these words should be accurately defined to prevent any misunderstanding. We demand that religion be held a private affair so far as the state is concerned. But by no means can we consider religion a private affair so far as our Party is concerned. Religion must be of no concern to the state, and religious societies must have no connection with governmental authority. Everyone must be absolutely free to profess any religion he pleases, or no religion whatever, i.e., to be an atheist, which every socialist is, as a rule. Discrimination among citizens on account of their religious convictions is wholly intolerable. Even the bare mention of a citizen’s religion in official documents should unquestionably be eliminated. No subsidies should be granted to the established church nor state allowances made to ecclesiastical and religious societies. These should become absolutely free associations of like-minded citizens, associations independent of the state. Only the complete fulfilment of these demands can put an end to the shameful and accursed past when the church lived in feudal dependence on the state, and Russian citizens lived in feudal dependence on the established church, when medieval, inquisitorial laws (to this day remaining in our criminal codes and on our statute-books) were in existence and were applied, persecuting men for their belief or disbelief, violating men’s consciences, and linking cosy government   jobs and government-derived incomes with the dispensation of this or that dope by the established church. Complete separation of Church and State is what the socialist proletariat demands of the modern state and the modern church.

The Russian revolution must put this demand into effect as a necessary component of political freedom. In this respect, the Russian revolution is in a particularly favourable position, since the revolting officialism of the police-ridden feudal autocracy has called forth discontent, unrest and indignation even among the clergy. However abject, however ignorant Russian Orthodox clergymen may have been, even they have now been awakened by the thunder of the downfall of the old, medieval order in Russia. Even they are joining in the demand for freedom, are protesting against bureaucratic practices and officialism, against the spying for the police imposed on the “servants of God”. We socialists must lend this movement our support, carrying the demands of honest and sincere members of the clergy to their conclusion, making them stick to their words about freedom, demanding that they should resolutely break all ties between religion and the police. Either you are sincere, in which case you must stand for the complete separation of Church and State and of School and Church, for religion to be declared wholly and absolutely a private affair. Or you do not accept these consistent demands for freedom, in which case you evidently are still held captive by the traditions of the inquisition, in which case you evidently still cling to your cosy government jobs and government-derived incomes, in which case you evidently do not believe in the spiritual power of your weapon and continue to take bribes from the state. And in that case the class-conscious workers of all Russia declare merciless war on you.”

– V.I. Lenin, “The Attitude of the Workers’ Party Towards Religion”

Forever in Chains: The Tragic History of Congo

Nsala, of the district of Wala, looking at the severed hand and foot of his five-year old daughter, Boali, who was killed and allegedly cannibalized by the members of Anglo-Belgian India Rubber Company (A.B.I.R.) militia. Source: E. D Morel, King Leopold's rule in Africa, between pages 144 and 145

Nsala, of the district of Wala, looking at the severed hand and foot of his five-year old daughter, Boali, who was killed and allegedly cannibalized by the members of Anglo-Belgian India Rubber Company (A.B.I.R.) militia. Source: E. D Morel, King Leopold’s rule in Africa, between pages 144 and 145

FRIDAY 28 JULY 2006

The most blighted nation on earth goes to the polls this weekend – more in hope than expectation that stability and peace might result. In Congo, mass suffering has been a way of life ever since the Belgian King Leopold enslaved millions in the 19th century. Paul Vallely traces the story of a people for whom the horror never let up

One picture sums it up. It shows a man named Nsala sitting on the porch of a missionary’s house in the Congo. His face is a portrait of impenetrable sorrow.

Before him lie a small hand and foot. It is all that remains of his five-year-old daughter who has – together with his wife and son – been killed, dismembered, cooked and eaten by soldiers.

The photograph was taken during the biggest atrocity in recorded African history. And it was perpetrated not by Africans, but by Europeans.

No one knows how many people died, but it was at least three million men, women and children. Some historians say it was five million, or 10 million. The Encyclopaedia Britannica has said that as many as 30 million people may have perished.

It is but a single chapter in the long and bloody history of the Congo. This weekend, voters go to the polls in Democratic Republic of Congo for the first elections in 40 years, during which havoc has been wreaked by despotism and war. But will Sunday’s poll do anything to change lives there for the better?

The first that was written of the hot and humid river basin that straddles the Equator on the west of the great African continent came from Portuguese travellers in the 15th century. They had encountered a place called the Kingdom of Kongo and, with its capital city of Mbanza Kongo, it had a population close to half a million people. It was a highly developed state at the centre of an extensive trading network.

Merchants traded all manner of raw materials, the most precious of which was ivory, but which also included a wealth of manufactured goods such as copper and ironware, raffia cloth and pottery. It was also a centre for the buying and selling of individuals captured in war. Long before the arrival of the Europeans, the slave trade existed. The ruler was a king who rejoiced in the title of “Mother of the King of Kongo”.

Not much more was heard of the place in Europe until the great Victorian missionary explorer David Livingstone discovered that quinine was the key to unlocking the African interior. He became a hero and a household name in the second half of the 19th century, but then disappeared into the bush. The New York Herald sent another intrepid Briton to find him, and the young man, Henry Morton Stanley, walked into the Oxford Dictionary of Quotations with his greeting: “Dr Livingstone, I presume?”

Across the other side of the globe, King Leopold II of the Belgians read about it over breakfast in the The Times, which was thrown from the continental mail train into the grounds of his palace each morning. (His butler ironed it before the monarch read it.)

Leopold had been of the opinion for some time that “il faut à la Belgique une colonie”. He didn’t want to miss the chance of getting a good slice of what he called the “magnifique gâteau africain”. But he was having a hard time persuading the Belgian government to agree. So he decided to acquire a colony by himself. In doing so, he ignited what came to be called “the scramble of Africa”.

Stanley’s encounter with the Congo was being hailed as the most important geographical “discovery” ever made in Africa. The king summoned the Welshman and in 1878 commissioned him to go back – under the guise of an international scientific and philanthropic association, which he called the International African Society – to negotiate with the local chiefs.

Over the five years that followed, Stanley concluded some 400 “cloth and trinket” treaties with the Congo chiefs. The Africans thought they were signing friendship pacts, but they were in fact selling their land.

Leopold, who was devious as well as greedy, persuaded the world that he was acting from humanitarian motives. In 1884, the The Daily Telegraph, perspicacious as ever, opined: “Leopold II has knit adventurers, traders and missionaries of many races into one band of men under the most illustrious of modern travellers [Stanley] to carry to the interior of Africa new ideas of law, order, humanity and protection of the natives.”

That year, at the Berlin Conference called by Bismarck to carve up Africa – which no African attended, even as an observer – Leopold displayed some nifty footwork. He persuaded the Iron Chancellor that, in order to exclude Germany’s rivals, Britain and France, from the important new region, it would be best to declare it a free trade area and give it to him. Not to Belgium, not even to the Belgian crown, but to him personally.

Without ever setting foot there, Leopold II had become the owner of nearly a million square miles of unmapped jungle, 75 times the size of Belgium itself. Ivory was what the king had his eye on. And, though plenty of it was yielded, Leopold struggled to make a profit. In 1895, he tried to give the colony to the Belgian government because it was costing him too much.

But then a Scot called Dunlop invented the pneumatic tyre for his bicycle, and the worldwide boom in rubber began. In the Congo, wild jungle vines that yielded the stuff grew everywhere. The natives would slash them and lather their bodies with the rubber. All that Leopold needed to do was to persuade the natives to scrape it off into huge baskets for him.

He did this by setting quotas of both rubber and ivory for each village, for which they were paid a pitifully low fixed price set by his officials on the ground. Each community was told to provide 10 per cent of their number as full-time forced labourers, and another 25 per cent part-time. It was a form of slavery.

Stanley, who supervised all this, became known in Kikongo as Bula Matari (the Breaker of Rocks), a tag the people later transferred to the Congolese state itself. The scheme was a huge success; by 1902, the price of rubber had risen 15 times in eight years, and it constituted 80 per cent of the exports of “The Congo Free State”, as Leopold had dubbed it.

Free is what the people were not. The symbol of Leopold’s rule was the schicotte – a whip of raw sun-dried hippopotamus hide cut into long sharp-edged strips which could quickly remove the skin from a man’s back. The king established a Force Publique to enforce the rubber quotas. Its soldiers were black – many of them cannibals from the fiercest tribes of upper Congo – but they were led by white officers who routinely supervised the burning of non-compliant villages and the torture and rape of those who were struggling to fill quotas.

One local man spelt out what this meant. “Wild beasts – leopards – killed some of us while we were working away in the forest, and others got lost or died from exposure or starvation and we begged the white men to leave us alone, saying we could get no more rubber, but the white men and the soldiers said, ‘Go. You are only beasts yourselves. You are only snyama [meat].’ Many were shot, some had their ears cut off.”

But the routine penalty for failing to bring in enough rubber was the severing of a hand. Soldiers collected them by the basketload, from the living and the dead. A Baptist missionary wrote a letter to The Times about it: “The hands – the hands of men, women and children – were placed in rows before the commissary who counted them to see that the soldiers had not wasted cartridges.” Officers were worried that the men might waste their ammunition on hunting animals for sport, so they required soldiers to submit one hand for every bullet spent. Hands became a grim currency, traded to make up for shortfalls in rubber quotas. “This rubber traffic is steeped in blood,” the letter-writer said.

Other testimony disclosed how Belgian officers ordered their men “to cut off the heads of the men and hang them on the village palisades, also their sexual members, and to hang the women and the children on the palisade in the form of a cross”. This blood-curdling business carried on for more than 12 years before word leaked out. One of the first to blow the whistle was the captain of one of the riverboats that transported the ivory and rubber downstream to port. His name was Joseph Conrad, and eight years later he wrote a book that has shaped the emotional language in which white people discuss Africa.

It was called Heart of Darkness. The atmosphere it conjures is of fetid fever-ridden ports in an Equatorial river basin surrounded by dense tropical rainforest. It is a climate of persistent high temperatures and humidity, as enervating to the soul as to the body. It is a world of madness, greed and violence, centred on a charismatic ivory trader called Kurtz who turns himself into a demigod to the local tribes and gathers vast quantities of ivory. Eventually, he dies – “The horror, the horror,” his last words.

When the book was published in magazine serial form in 1899, it did not just expose what Conrad was to call “the vilest scramble for loot that ever disfigured the history of human conscience”. It also gave backing to the writings of a man whose campaigns on the Congo the public had been reluctant to believe.

ED Morel was a clerk in a Liverpool shipping office who began to wonder why the ships that brought vast loads of rubber from the Congo returned carrying no commercial goods, but only guns and ammunition. He began to investigate the Force Publique and concluded that Leopold’s well-publicised philanthropy was in fact “legalised robbery enforced by violence”. He wrote: “I had stumbled upon a secret society of murderers with a king for a croniman.”

In 1903, the House of Commons debated the Congo atrocities. The British consul in Congo, Roger Casement, was sent to investigate. The year after, he returned with a vivid and detailed eyewitness report, which was made public. His 1904 report, which confirmed Morel’s accusations and suggested that at least three million people had died, had a considerable impact on public opinion.

Even then, Leopold countered with a wicked publicity campaign to discredit the reports. He even created a bogus Commission for the Protection of the Natives to root out the “few isolated instances” of abuse. But he reckoned without another recent invention – the camera. Before long, horrifying photographs such as the one of the man with his daughter’s little hand and foot, were in circulation.

International opinion was outraged. In America, Mark Twain penned a savage piece of sarcasm called King Leopold’s Soliloquy. In Britain, Arthur Conan Doyle was inspired to write the book The Crime of the Congo, which he completed in eight days. Before long, the American President and the British prime minister were pressing the Belgian government to act.

Leopold offered to reform his regime, but few took him seriously. After two years of agonised deliberation, a further report (which confirmed Casement’s) and a general election, the Parliament of Belgium annexed the Congo Free State and took over its administration. It paid Leopold £2m to compensate him for his sacrifices.

Renamed the Belgian Congo (to contrast with the much smaller French Congo, now the Republic of Congo, to the west), the region became a “model colony”. In the decades that followed the transfer of responsibility to the government of Belgium, large amounts of the wealth produced in the Congo were spent there by the alliance of church, commerce and state.

The missionaries built hospitals and clinics to which large numbers of Congolese had access. Doctors and medics achieved great victories against disease, managing to eradicate sleeping sickness. Many villages had medical posts, and bigger cities had well-equipped hospitals. The church ran schools to which 10 per cent of the people were admitted, comparing favourably with the 6 per cent of the population in school in India and the much lower percentages elsewhere in Africa. The colonial authorities built railways, ports and roads. The mining companies built houses for their staff, provided welfare and technical training.

By the Second World War, production and profits had risen to the point where the Congo was Africa’s richest colony. In the 1950s, life expectancy was 55 years (today, it is 51). By 1959, the year before independence, the Belgian Congo was producing 10 per cent of world’s copper, 50 per cent of its cobalt and 70 per cent of industrial diamonds.

What was missing was the development of a Congolese elite to take over the running of the place. The Congolese had no rights to own land, to vote or to travel freely. There were curfews in towns and forced labour in the countryside. There was no higher education, except for those who wanted to become priests. The Congolese were encouraged to become clerks, medical assistants and mechanics, but not doctors, lawyers or engineers.

At independence, out of a population of 60 million, there were just 16 university graduates. Educated Congolese were given the status of Sévolués, but this won them few privileges when what they wanted, wrote Patrice Lumumba, who was to become the first prime minister of what became Democratic Republic of Congo, “was to be Belgians and have the same freedoms and rights as whites”.

It would come eventually, their colonial masters thought, in perhaps another 100 years. When a Belgian academic suggested a 30-year transition plan was needed, he was greeted with derision. But when the change came, on the back of the sudden tide of African nationalism that swept the continent, accompanied by riots, it happened in just 18 months. The Congo was perhaps the least well-prepared of any colony for independence.

It didn’t help that on Independence Day in 1960, King Baudouin arrived to make a speech praising the “genius” of Leopold II, listing the sacrifices that Belgium had made for the Congo and doling out patronising advice. Prime Minister Lumumba responded with an off-the-cuff speech about the “terrible suffering and exploitation” that had been experienced by “we niggers” and promising: “We shall make of the Congo a shining example for the whole of Africa.” It was not to be.

Lumumba was charismatic, with extraordinary powers of oratory, but he was volatile. Within days of the independence ceremonies, rebellions and violence broke out. The province of Katanga declared independence. Belgium moved troops in. So did the United Nations. Feeling betrayed, Lumumba requested Soviet military aid.

The local CIA chief telegrammed back to Washington that the Congo was “a Cuba in the making” and that Lumumba was a “Castro or worse”. President Eisenhower allegedly authorised that Lumumba be assassinated and a CIA hit man came from Paris with poison to be, bizarrely, injected into the prime minister’s toothpaste. (The local CIA man refused to do it.)

The plot thickened with Dag Hammarskjold, the UN Secretary General, dying in a plane crash in uncertain circumstances while trying to negotiate a ceasefire in Katanga. Letters recently uncovered by South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission suggested that South African agents planted a bomb in the aircraft’s wheel-bay. And, not long afterwards, the Marxist guerrilla leader Che Guevara appeared in the Congo with 100 men in a plot to bring about a Cuban-style revolution.

Amid all that, Patrice Lumumba had fallen out with the Congo’s first president, Joseph Kasavubu. As the pair engaged in a power struggle in September 1960, a military coup overthrew Lumumba in favour of the president. The putsch was staged by the 29-year-old army chief of staff, Colonel Joseph-Désiré Mobutu. Five years later, he staged another one, ousting Kasavubu and beginning his own bizarre 32-year rule.

Lumumba was shot in the bush at the command of a Belgian officer. His body was hacked to pieces and dissolved in sulphuric acid, his skull ground to dust and his bones and teeth scattered – some say by a witch doctor from an aircraft along the country’s borders, to make sure he could not come back from the dead.

Things did not get better. Mobutu sent the Russians packing, which greatly pleased the Americans. So did almost everything else he did, for he staunchly followed US foreign policy in all key matters. It was the height of the Cold War and Africa had become a proxy battlefield. Keeping the Soviets out was more important than anything else. As long as Mobutu did that, and supported anti-Communist rebels in neighbouring countries, Washington would turn a blind eye to anything else.

Mobutu made the most of that. He set up a one-party state that tolerated no dissent. In the early years, he consolidated power by publicly executing political rivals. One rebel leader had his eyes gouged out, his genitals ripped off and his limbs amputated one by one before he died.

Later, Mobutu switched to a new tactic – that of buying off political rivals rather than killing them. He did so by elevating theft to a form of government. A new word was coined to describe it – kleptocracy. At first, he had tried simply printing more money to pay the bills for his schemes. He issued new stamps, coins and currency notes with his portrait on.

There were posters and billboards everywhere. His personality cult reached its peak every night when the television news began with an image of him descending through clouds from the heavens. He put the story about that even his walking stick had magic powers.

In the early years, he launched an African Authenticity campaign. He renamed the country Zaire in 1971. He ordered everyone to drop their Christian names for African ones, rebranding himself Mobutu Sese Seko Nkuku Ngbendu Wa Za Banga (“The all-powerful warrior who, because of his endurance and inflexible will to win, will go from conquest to conquest, leaving fire in his wake”). He outlawed hair-straightening, skin bleaching, the wearing of ties and listening to foreign music. He nationalised foreign-owned firms and handed them to relatives and associates.

When the economy slumped, he printed more money. Hyperinflation followed, and even the central bank bought its hard currency on the black market. But he was a Cold War warrior, so the West bailed him out. The more they gave him, the more he stole. Of the $73m education budget one year, schools got only $8m; he pocketed the rest. So it went with every area of government.

Mobutu’s extravagance was legendary. He had villas, ranches, palaces and yachts throughout Europe. Concorde was constantly hired. He didn’t just have Swiss bank accounts; he bought a Swiss bank. He didn’t just get his wife a Mercedes; he bought a Mercedes assembly plant for her. He stashed away nearly $5bn – almost the equivalent of the country’s foreign debt at the time.

Still, the West smiled and paid up to the man Ronald Reagan called “a voice of good sense and good will”. The US gave him a total of $2bn over 30 years. The CIA trained and armed his bodyguards. When rebels attacked him, France airlifted in 1,500 elite Moroccan paratroopers. When that wasn’t enough, a year later Belgium and France deployed troops (with American logistical support).

All the while, the Congo became Africa’s haven for mercenaries, money launderers and diamond smugglers – while its public infrastructure rotted and child mortality rose. Mobutu became the longest-surviving despot of the Cold War era. It was either “Mobutu or chaos”, the US said. But the hapless people of the Congo got both.

Then it was over. The Berlin Wall fell. The Cold War ended. The IMF experts who had been brought in to reform his finances – and left after a year in despair – pulled the plug on his loans. The US would lend no more. Mobutu declared an end to one-party rule, but it was too late.

What finished him off was the decision to back the perpetrators of the Rwandan genocide. After the Hutu genocidaires were chased from Rwanda in 1994, Mobutu gave them shelter in Zaire. More than that; he issued an order forcing Tutsis to leave Zaire on penalty of death. They erupted in rebellion. Rwanda and Uganda joined in, invading eastern Congo in pursuit of the genocidaires. When they met no resistance – the Congolese army being more used to suppressing civilians than fighting – they marched on the capital Kinshasa.

Mobutu – the “all-powerful warrior”, the fifth-richest man in the world, who bled the Congo even more efficiently than King Leopold, and who looted the state into paralysis – escaped on a cargo plane with bullets ripping into the fuselage as it took off. After 20 years of Mobutist dictatorship, in the words of the African historian Basil Davidson: “Zaire remained a state without a nation, a geographical concept without a people.” And Kinshasa la belle had become Kinshasa la poubell – the dustbin.

The new man was Laurent-Désiré Kabila. He presented himself as the heir to the murdered Lumumba. Outsiders hailed him as one of the “new breed” of African leaders. Nelson Mandela paid tribute. The US Secretary of State, Madeleine Albright, stood next to Kabila early on and said that the Democratic Republic of the Congo (or Democratic Republic of Congo as it was re-re-named) would now emerge as “an engine of regional growth”. Those who knew Kabila thought differently.

His critics sneered that all he had ever run was a brothel in Tanzania. Others recalled the judgement of Che Guevara who had concluded three decades earlier that Kabila was “not the man of the hour”. He was too interested in drinking, bedding women and showing up days late. The lack of co-operation between Kabila and Guevara was what had led to the Cuban-style revolution foundering in the Sixties.

He had not, it seemed, improved with age. Kabila turned out to be another petty tyrant. Secretive and paranoid, he had no political programme and just doled out jobs to family and friends. He made his cousin chief of the armed forces, gave his son a top army job and made his brother-in-law the police chief. Worse, he was as cruel as Mobutu, jailing and torturing opponents, but lacking his skill in playing the ethnic card. He promised elections but never held them.

And he did not learn from Mobutu’s mistakes. Put in power by the Rwandans and Ugandans, he decided to distance himself from them by again supporting the Hutus and allowing them to regroup on Congolese soil. Rwanda had learnt the lessons of the past; it immediately flew 2,000 troops to within striking distance of the capital. Uganda joined in. Kabila was only saved because Angola and Zimbabwe came to his rescue, the former fearing that a power vacuum in the DRC would allow Angolan rebels to flourish, the later trying to play the statesman and grab some mining contracts.

The fighting soon stalemated. But no one was bothered; all involved just used the bases they had established inside the DRC to plunder. The war became self-financing as all sides scrabbled for diamonds, gold and timber.

Suddenly, 70 per cent of the Congo’s coltan – an essential component in making mobile phones – was being exported through Rwanda. And Congo gold turned into a major Ugandan export. Rwanda and Uganda even began to fight each other at one point over control of Kisangani and its diamond fields.

What broke the stalemate was a coup in 2001. The plot failed, but Kabila was assassinated. His son, Joseph Kabila Kabange, became President. The Congo’s warlords were happy, assuming that junior would be a pushover.

But Kabila II had done his military training in China and turned out to be an operator. Within a year, he had successfully negotiated an international peace deal that saw Rwanda withdraw and all the remaining warring parties agree to end the fighting and establish a government of national unity.

Peace has returned to two-thirds of the country – there are factions fighting in the east – and Kabila has delivered the referendum he promised and now, on Sunday, the elections. He is, of course, standing and is, of course, the favourite of the 33 candidates.

The country is still in a dire state. Aid organisations say about 1,200 people die daily due to the effects of the conflict, hunger and disease. The DRC has Aids, low life expectancy and a high rate of child deaths. More than two million Congolese are internal refugees. National output and government revenue slumped – and external debt increased – during the five years of fighting, in which perhaps four million people died.

Even so, this weekend’s elections – the first multiparty elections in 40 years – are the biggest and most costly the UN has organised. Another eastern warlord yesterday agreed to lay down arms. Last month, the world’s largest mining company, BHP Billiton, said it would open an office in Kinshasa once the election is over. Other big mining groups may follow.

The prospects look a little brighter. It may be too soon – in the two-steps-forward, one-step-back world of contemporary Africa – to be optimistic. But, in their terrible story, the people of the Congo hope that, at last, it may be that a corner is being turned.

The horror: from Conrad’s ‘Heart of Darkness’

Paths, paths, everywhere; a stamped-in network of paths spreading over the empty land, through the long grass, through burnt grass, through thickets, down and up chilly ravines, up and down stony hills ablaze with heat; and a solitude, a solitude, nobody, not a hut. The population had cleared out a long time ago. Well, if a lot of mysterious niggers armed with all kinds of fearful weapons suddenly took to travelling on the road between Deal and Gravesend, catching the yokels right and left to carry heavy loads for them, I fancy every farm and cottage thereabouts would get empty very soon. Only here the dwellings were gone, too. Still I passed through several abandoned villages. There’s something pathetically childish in the ruins of grass walls. Day after day, with the stamp and shuffle of 60 pair of bare feet behind me, each pair under a 60lb load. Camp, cook, sleep, strike camp, march. Now and then a carrier dead in harness, at rest in the long grass near the path, with an empty water gourd and his long staff lying by his side. A great silence around and above. Perhaps on some quiet night the tremor of far-off drums, sinking, swelling, a tremor vast, faint; a sound weird, appealing, suggestive and wild – and perhaps with as profound a meaning as the sound of bells in a Christian country. Once a white man in an unbuttoned uniform, camping on the path with an armed escort of lank Zanzibaris, very hospitable and festive – not to say drunk. Was looking after the upkeep of the road, he declared. Can’t say I saw any road or any upkeep, unless the body of a middle-aged negro, with a bullet-hole in the forehead, upon which I absolutely stumbled three miles farther on, may be considered a permanent improvement.

Source

Game Over: Scans of Over 50 Ron Paul Newsletters

For a certain segment of the Ron Paul fanbase, no evidence of his disseminating hateful, paranoid material will ever be enough. Citing James Kirchick’s piece in The New Republic wasn’t sufficient, because Kirchick could have just been “making everything up.” Then, when I and others posted copies of “The Ron Paul Political Report Special Issue on Race Terrorism,” that too wasn’t convincing.

“Proof that he said/endorsed racist things? Hardly. Doing it repeatedly in one document isn’t enough to prove that he did it. Now, if there were many documents…”

Well, now there are many documents. Over fifty. Right here.

As I said in my rundown on the Paul platform over at Vice, reasonable fans of Dr. Paul now must accept that there’s no way Paul could have been ignorant of the content [of] 8-12 page newsletters published under his name for over ten years. Paul supporters face three losing propositions:

• He lacks the competency to control content published under his own name for over a decade, and is thus unfit to lead a country.
• He doesn’t believe these things but considers them a useful political tool to motivate racist whites, which makes him fit to be a GOP candidate, but too obvious about it to win.
• He’s actually a racist, which makes him unfit to be a human being.

Further, you can’t dismiss this in the name of higher political or socioeconomic aspirations. Since Paul has no chance of winning — seriously, no chance at all — his only value is as a voice, a conduit for principles. And if your only hope is to change the discourse by amplifying ideas, you can do that via many voices and avenues. As I said in my Vice follow-up, acknowledging some of Paul’s good ideas,

when you opt to support anti-imperialist and civil liberties ideals by supporting Paul the Candidate, you end up supporting everything else about him. That includes those newsletters and the unambiguous message to those who enjoy them: You can write these things and succeed; this works. The other good ideas to which he’s signatory can’t erase the fact that he put his name to those words printed above. The moral weight of those newsletters drags down even the most high-minded aspirations he has about civil liberties, and everything crashes down on all of us.

It’s fine to have convictions about things he believes in. But when you voluntarily whitewash his record or choose to ignore it and champion him anyway, you are complicit in supporting the idea that racism and homophobia are morally inconsequential to the process of running for President of the United States. And, while many Paul supporters consider racism a social injury subordinate to extra-legal military conflict, there are just as many who disgustingly handwave at racism because it’s an inconsequential burp on the way to more tax cuts, Free Markets, Free Money, Free Black Peop — stuff for me!

And still, for the faithful, this will not be enough.

Below, I’ve tried to give helpful general (bold) titles to each excerpt of the various Ron Paul newsletters available. These come courtesy of a zipfile of scans sent to me by reader Heresiarch, who, along with others, compiled it from various sources — although the lion’s share, if not all, come from James Kirchick, who wrote the original, big Ron Paul story in The New Republic, in 2008. (You can see many of his highlights on the scans.) I have omitted the over 65 pages of scanned federal earmarks Ron Paul requested for his district, in a fit of States’ Wants pique. I have also omitted the scans of Von Mises Institute brochures about a Secession Conference at which Paul spoke.

No attempt has been made to organize these via topic, since pages of each newsletter are apt to feature mini-articles on multiple topics, making organization futile. (My summaries don’t indicate all that go on in the scans, so please click away.) Finally, below some of the scans, I’ve offered some comments in plain text. Those within quotation marks are direct quotes from the text appearing in the newsletter scans. Those without quotation marks are my own observations.

Ron Paul Newsletter—April, 1993: The New York Bombing

“Whether it was a setup by the Israeli Mossad, as a Jewish friend of mine suspects, or was truly a retaliation by the Islamic fundamentalists, matters little. The cities have become centers of violence, whether through the daily and routine terrorism of crime, political bomb terrorism, or the terrorism of mob behavior as in Los Angeles.”

Ron Paul Newsletter—August, 1990: Those Lucky Minorities and the Straight-Seducing Gay Bush Junta

“And Stanford, Michigan, and many other universities have banned speech that offends privileged groups. Anti-white, anti-male, anti-heterosexual or anti-Christian remarks are perfectly OK, of course.” You can imagine, then, what a relief it must be to minorities, homosexuals, women and non-Christians to find themselves the privileged people of America. The rest of this page and part of the second details a cabal of homosexuals in the Bush administration who like to lead “the young” astray.

Dr. Ron Paul’s Freedom Report—April, 1978:

This is instructive because, if someone else was writing Ron Paul’s newsletters for him, they’ve been doing it for 33 years, with a remarkable tonal consistency. Even in 1978, the patterns of paranoia about American government capture by international secret interests are apparent. To wit, “I can believe that a non-conspiratorial President, if we had one….”

“The Trilateral Commission is no longer known only by those who are knowledgeable about international conspiracies, but is routinely mentioned in the daily news…. Jimmy Carter’s membership in the Trilateral Commission is hardly a coincidence.”

“I believe, in reality, the [Panama] Canal is now “owned” by facist-oriented [sic], international banking and business interests and is merely managed by the Marxist-oriented Torrijos dictatorship, with the bills being paid by the American taxpayers….”

Ron Paul Investment Letter—May 1988: Say No to the New World Order

The first of many existentially terrifying revelations about a coming global disaster that Ron Paul will gladly share with you, for the good of all true Americans, assuming they will pay. This theme appears again and again: in the greatest fight you can imagine for the lifeblood of liberty and American history, there is no time to waste in making sure that you send Ron Paul money. That’s how much Ron Paul loves America—for $1, if you buy 25 copies and $6.95 for a single copy.

Ron Paul Newsletter—December 1990: MLK

After beginning with an objection to the “statism” of the Smithsonian Institution including a civil rights exhibit about homosexuals (without objections to the “statism” of having, say, historic American flags on display), the piece includes a bit about Martin Luther King’s plagiarism problems with his doctorate. That poor scholarship on Dr. King’s part is actually true, but the newsbite here is merely a peg on which to hang more (and repeated) King-hate. For instance, on the following page:

“[King] was also a Comsymp, if not an actual party member, and the man who replaced the evil of forced segregation with the evil of forced integration. King, the FBI files show, was not only a world-class adulterer, he also seduced underage girls and boys…. And we are supposed to honor this ‘Christian minister’ and lying socialist satyr…?”

Ron Paul Newsletter—February, 1990: The Coming Race War and Shame of MLK Day

“Boy, it sure burns me to have a national holiday for that pro-communist philanderer, Martin Luther King. I voted against this outrage time and time again as a Congressman. What an infamy that Ronald Reagan approved it! We can thank him for our annual Hate Whitey Day. Listen to a black radio talk show in any major city. The racial hatred makes a KKK rally look tame.”

Ron Paul Newsletter—February, 1991: The X-Rated Martin Luther King

As if everything else about the communist pedophile Martin Luther King weren’t bad enough, apparently he couldn’t stop fucking Ralph Abernathy.

Ron Paul Newsletter—January, 1988: AIDS and Great Crabcakes, Two Things Made in Maryland

“Dr. Douglass believes that AIDS is a deliberately engineered hybrid of these two animal viruses cultured in human tissue, and he blames World Health Organization experimentation at Ft. Detrick, Maryland…. Could the government have experimented with it in the civilian population, as it did in the 1950s with LSD, and had things get out of control? I don’t know, but these sure are interesting questions.” See? He’s just asking questions.

Ron Paul Newsletter—January, 1990: SODOMY EQUALS DEATH

“A well-known libertarian editor just back from New York told me: ‘The ACT-UP slogan, on stickers plastered all over Manhattan, is “Silence = Death.” But shouldn’t it be “Sodomy = Death”?'”

Ron Paul Newsletter—January, 1991: MLK, World-Class Philanderer

“St. Martin was a world-class philanderer who beat up his paramours (‘non-violence’ didn’t apply in all spheres, I guess).”

This second page soft-sells the idea that MLK wished he could be like Castro but was prevented because a violent revolution wouldn’t work in the U.S. So, rather than this being an indication of his own good judgment about the best course of seeking equality, it’s proof that he was basically a murdering revolutionary thwarted by indifference. It also describes the civil rights movement as “bad from the beginning,” because overturning Jim Crow and then refusing to accept that glorious market happiness would elevate blacks to equal status in the United States represents a social injustice.

Ron Paul Newsletter—June, 1990: The Pink House?

“What an outrage that, for the first time in our nation’s history, the organized forces of perversion were feted in the White House.” Here, “organized forces of perversion” means “gay people hoping to be spared dehumanizing violence.”

“President Bush invited the heads of homosexual lobbying groups to the White House for the ceremony. As Congressman Bill Dannemeyer (R-CA) noted, ‘It’s a tragic message that is being sent,’ that normality and deviance are equal. I miss the closet. Homosexuals, not to speak of the rest of society, were far better off when social pressure forced them to hide their activities. They could also not be as promiscuous. Is it any coincidence that the AIDS epidemic developed after they came ‘out of the closet’ and started hyper-promiscuous sodomy? I don’t believe so, medically or morally.”

Ron Paul Newsletter—May, 1990: When Blacks Kill Whites

“When blacks kill whites, however, it’s not defined as news.”

Ron Paul Newsletter—November, 1990: David Duke

“To many voters, this seemed just like plain good sense. Duke carried baggage from his past, but the voters were willing to overlook that.” Fun words, fun ideas: “baggage” that some voters “overlooked.”

Ron Paul Newsletter—October, 1990: AIDS, Gays, Blacks and Rapetown

A sales pitch for None Dare Call It Conspiracy, one of the finest modern history books you can find at your local Army surplus store, next to the “$3 Bills (Clinton)” and the IMPEACH BILLARY stickers, as well as something about Obama Muslim Hussein NOT RACIST.

“A mob of black protestors, led by the ‘Rev.’ Al Sharpton, occupied and closed the Statue of Liberty recently, demanding that New York be renamed Martin Luther King City ‘to reclaim it for our people.’ Hmmm. I hate to agree with the Rev. Al, but maybe a name change is in order. Welfaria? Zooville? Rapetown? Dirtburg? Lazyopolis? But Al, the Statue of Liberty? Next time, hold that demonstration at a food stamp bureau or a crack house.”

This page includes a bunch of frankly nutty ideas about how everyone should deal with people with AIDS, followed by, “No kissing, since AIDS can be transmitted by saliva.”

This page offers a mixed vote of support for jury nullification (almost always invoked in these pages as a right for a jury to exonerate anyone who refuses to pay federal taxes), while also implying that a jury and city were influenced by black demonstrators for Marion Barry. “There were constant anti-white demonstrations outside the courthouse.”

Ron Paul Political Report—March, 1990: Homophobes for Andy Rooney

“CBS forced him into an apologotic [sic] interview with The Advocate, a homosexual magazine filled with classified ads for pervert prostitutes. The reporter–who certainly had an axe to grind, and that’s not easy with a limp wrist….” It goes on to claim that the reporter for The Advocate made things up about Rooney, as part of the devious homosexual agenda.

“The liberals promised us relief from guilt, points out Murray N. Rothbard, of the Ludwig von Mises Institute, and they did abolish sexual guilt (and gave use widespread sodomy, AIDS, promiscuity, illegitimacy, and abortion in the bargain). But they imposed a thousand new guilts over racism, sexism, speciesism, ageism, and homophobia (the dread belief that normal sexual conduct is superior to abnormal).”

There it is in a nut, kids. It was liberalism that foisted on human beings the idea that you should feel ashamed by unwarranted “superiority,” malicious exclusion, self-satisfied exploitation, dehumanization, disregard and violence. The nemesis that liberalism visits on libertarianism — and, thus, libertarianism’s proof of liberalism’s great authoritarian imposition — is that the human race is not your basement rec room array of toys; you are not the sole arbiter of value, and you don’t get to have all the coolest things because you are you and because others have failed in terms of that singularly pointless achievement.

Ron Paul Political Report—July 1992: Blacks, Riots, ACORN

“Perot cannot fix the welfare state any more than Gorbachev could fix Soviet socialism. To achieve even a semblance of success, Perot may resort to authoritarian means. Maintaining order may be the number one priority, especially as the race riots grow…. Just after a basketball game ended on June 14, blacks poured into the streets of Chicago in celebration. How to celebrate? How else? They broke the windows of stores to loot, even breaking through protective steel shutters with crowbars to steal everything in sight…. (Is this why Hollywood tells us White Men Can’t Jump?).”

“Of all the stores that were looted, only one had its goods simply thrown on the sidewalk rather than stolen: a bookstore.” Ahahaha, I get it. It’s because black people don’t read! “Jury verdicts, basketball games, and even music are enough to set off black rage, it seems.”

“What does it say about a party when its candidate can’t criticize those who advocate killing white people without upsetting its core voters? What does it say about blacks that they would find it upsetting to hear this criticized? My guess is that Jesse Jackson and friends talk like this in private.”

“Another good example is a study just released by ACORN (Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now) called ‘Take the Money and Run: The Siphoning of Deposits from Minority Neighborhoods.’ It alleges that banks take deposits from blacks and then don’t grant them loans. They say that for every dollar on deposit, only 4 cents goes [sic] back to blacks. Ever vigilant against economic differences that express themselves in racial terms, the American elite are busy instituting race quotas in lending. ACORN called for a summit meeting with bankers to ‘work out the differences’–meaning that banks fork over the cash…. They all agreed to fork over more money–so long as the regulators don’t notice that they are not paid back.”

This last page emphasizes the sinister nature of equal lending by describing Jack Kemp’s support for the idea of having a black person see if he can get a loan, then report back. It’s just like the Thought Police, but with numbers and other objective measures employed against thoughts. Tremble, tremble, tremble, Middle America.

Ron Paul Political Report—November 1992: Bobby Fischer, Jew Victim

“It turns out that the brilliant Fischer, who has all the makings of an American hero, is very politically incorrect on Jewish questions, for which he will never be forgiven, even though he is a Jew. Thus we are not supposed to herald him as the world’s greatest chess player.”

Note two things here. One, even at the time, nobody disputed that Fischer was one of the greatest in chess history; nor does anyone dispute that today. Two, even at the time, Fischer disavowed his own Jewish ancestry, openly admired Hitler, blamed the Jews for ruining his reputation and chess ranking in the world and considered the State of Israel to be a spider manipulating the press and intelligentsia of the English-speaking world. To consider Fischer anything other than a raving loon and, further, to consider him persecuted only opens very reasonable lines of inquiry as to why anybody would sympathize with him at all, unless his lunacy was coeval with one’s own.

Ron Paul Political Report—November, 1989: Bohemian Grove

“The annual Grove encampment began with the pagan ‘Cremation of Care’ ceremony, with Druid priests dressed in tight, multicolored robes. Even stranger, says Weiss, ‘vaguely homosexual undertones suffused this spectacle, as they do much of the ritualized life in the Grove.’ Indeed, there’s sex at the Grove: female prostitutes outside the camp (and inside, in past years, we’re told) and–says Weiss–a young man on his own gets ‘frequent invitations from gay Bohemians.'” Once again, the real horror of international conspiracy and political capture is vivified not by policy decisions but because dudes might kiss each other or have sex after marriage or engage in some mindless, meaningless ritual that is non-Christian.

“In his speech to fellow Bohemians, Reagan advocated the old Trilateralist agenda item of four-year terms for Congressmen… and more government regulation of the media, to keep articles like Weiss’ out of print…. When a Time reporter and photographer tried to do the same sort of story in 1982, it was spiked by Time’s Trilateral publisher.” In classic conspiracist narrative, any dislike of the media is explicit dislike of conspiracists’ contribution to media, and their failures to appear in mass media indicate a systemic muzzling, rather than a — to take a free-market example — bottom-line-minded publisher passing on something that nobody with a brain, checkbook or an absence of heavy-metal poisoning will read or care about.

This last page could have been a good point about the USS Liberty and American newspapers’ paralytic fear of offending the State of Israel with accurate reportage of Israeli military overreaction, but the end of the page sabotages that with even more DREAD HOMO CONSPIRACY. As is the case with everything else Ron Paul, a decent idea is ineluctably subsumed by totally crazy nonsense.

For instance: “Congressman Barney Frank (D-MA) said that if he were drummed out of the House, he would take many others with him, including five Republicans he says are closet homosexuals. This threat apparently led the House ethics committee to try to call off further inquiries into the sex lives of Congressmen, and in early October, the Washington Post said that there would be no more talk of sex in Congress. By the end of the month, however, the Washington Times was reporting that ‘senior Democratic officials’ say the Congressional gym has become a hotbed of homosexual activity, presumably by Republicans.”

Ron Paul Political Report—November, 1992: Buy My Book! Buy My Book! Buy My Book on Abortion! Abortion and Property Rights Are Essentially the Same. They’re a Matter of Privacy, Unlike Abortion, Which is Not Privacy but Property. We Cannot Legislate Property at the Federal Level, However… (Votes for Every Federal Abortion Ban Available) Property and the Person Theoretically If Von Mises and Things, Cogito, Then…

“Make no mistake: if our culture is not willing to recognize the value of life, it can never be persuaded to recognize the derivative obligations to respect private property, limited government, sound money, etc. That’s why the opinions of the medical elite are a threat to our entire civilization. (Want a copy of my latest book on abortion? It’s available for $10 from our office.)”

Ron Paul Political Report—October, 1992: Carjacking: A Hip-Hop Thing to Do

“If you live in a major city, you’ve probably already heard about the newest threat to your life and limb, and your family: carjacking. It is the hip-hop thing to do among the urban youth who play unsuspecting whites like pianos. The youth simply walk up to a car they like, pull a gun, tell the family to get out, steal their jewelry and wallets, and take the car to wreck. Such actions have ballooned in the recent months. In the old days, average people could avoid such youth by staying out of bad neighborhoods. Empowered by media, police, and political complicity, however, the youth now roam everywhere looking for cars to steal and people to rob. What can you do? More and more Americans are carrying a gun in the car. An ex-cop I know advises that if you have to use a gun on a youth, you should leave the scene immediately, disposing of the wiped off gun as soon as possible. Such a gun cannot, of course, be registered to you, but one bought privately (through the classifieds, for example).”

Now try reading that quote again, but replace the word “youth” with “nigger.” Let’s not pretend it’s meant to be anything else.

Ron Paul Survival Report—January 1993: A Youth Culture of Ghetto Values

“Nearly every other group but whites are allowed a certain degree of cultural autonomy. Blacks have black schools, clubs, and neighborhoods. The same is true of Hispanics. It is human nature that like attracts likes. But whites are not allowed to express this same human impulse. Except in a de facto sense, there can be no white schools, white clubs, or white neighbor hoods [sic]. The political system demands white integration, while allowing black segregation. The youth culture is already driven by ghetto music and ghetto values…. And the sexual ethics of our youth are also degenerating to the level of the ghetto.”

Ron Paul Survival Report—January, 1994: Gay People Enjoy Getting AIDS

“They enjoy the attention and pity that comes with being sick. Put it all together, and you’ve got another wave of AIDS infections, that you, dear taxpayer, will be asked to pay for.”

Ron Paul Survival Report—January, 1995: Ten Militia Commandments

“You can’t kill a Hydra by cutting off it’s head.” “Keep the group size down.” “Keep quiet and you’re harder to find.”

“Don’t keep all your eggs in one basket. If you have more than one rifle, store it in a hideaway spot.” “Hide your best eggs from prying eyes. Destroy any documents or discs that become unnecessary.” “Bojangles Robinson ain’t the only one who can tap. Avoid the phone as much as possible.” “Remember you’re not alone.”

Ron Paul Survival Report—July, 1994: America Has Less Crime Than Europe When You Take out All the Black People

The analysis from “Criminologist Jared Taylor” comes from a man who believes in white supremacy and eugenics laws and is featured as an interviewee on websites like this.

Ron Paul Survival Report—March, 1993: Clinton’s Illegitimate Children

“During the presidential campaign, black activist Robert ‘Say’ McIntosh of Arkansas distributed a list of Clinton’s illegitimate children, black and white: ‘woods colts’ in the backwoods slang…. Why? ‘Bill Clinton told me he would get my son out of prison,’ McIntosh said in an interview, according to a front page story in the Washington Times.”

You, too, should be stunned to see a Ron Paul newsletter alleging that Bill Clinton fucks black people, according to a black person connected to a black person in jail, printed in the ridiculously far-right Moonie Times. The only thing this story lacks is the idea that Clinton himself is secretly black. Not that insinuating that would have any resonance with people who like Ron Paul solely for freedom’s sake and who cannot be racist because “racism is a form of collectivism.” No, of course not.

This first page hysterically predicts the worst tax rises in history, ignoring actual history. That’s par for the course. The second page keeps elaborating on fantasies that wouldn’t even be nightmarish to any American in 1955. But, just for good measure, it includes, “You Can’t Fire a Freak,” in which being a transsexual is not only deviant but also the first sign of runaway lawsuits!

Ron Paul Survival Report—November, 1994: Militia Movements, A Magnificent Sign!

“This radical new movement is a magnificent sign of the times, one of many indications that the central state faces massive resistance from average people and is losing its grip on political power…. It’s the domination of the country by Washington that is driving the militia and other heroic movements around the country.”

“If you belong to one of these groups, be careful not to let down your guard too easily if at all…. Big government is forever, says the Beltway elite. But don’t believe it. If people form their own communities of internal protection, the central state becomes an even more obvious parasite. It is an encouraging sign that the end of government as we know it may be near.”

Ron Paul Survival Report—September, 1994: Those Who Don’t Commit Sodomy, Who Don’t Get a Blood Transfusion and Who Don’t Swap Needles Are Virtually Assured of Not Getting AIDS Unless They Are Deliberately Infected by a Malicious Gay

The above title is the money quote from this piece. Coming in second: “On sharing needles: this is one of the customs among dopers. They use the same needle out of addict solidarity. Sterile syringes would be just as available on the black market as illegal drugs if the demand were there. Addicts want to share needles. Too bad they have to die so expensively at taxpayers’ expense.”

Ron Paul Political Report—December, 1989: Needlin, Jesse Jackson, Homos, Reverse Racism and Washington FOR BLACKS ONLY

Paul writes, “My old colleague, Congressman Bill Dannemeyer (R-CA), speaks out despite the organized power of the gay lobby…. Here are some excerpts from one of his recent speeches:

“AIDS was ‘originally known as GRIDS–gay related immune deficiency syndrome.’ For political reasons, it was changed to AIDS. “A whole political movement has been created and sustained on a single notion: homosexual sodomy.”

“The average homosexual has 1,000 or more partners in a lifetime, and the average homosexual has only one sexual enounter per partner and never sees the person again after that encounter.”

It goes on, and it’s ridiculous, and no assertion made in it passes a laugh test or any clinical rigorousness, which you’d think would matter to someone billing himself as “Dr.” Paul.

“To be white in Washington, however, is to experience a culture that is anti-white and proud of it…. Professors teach that whites are committing genocide against blacks and invented crack and AIDS as part of the plan.”

Agreed. That’s just nutty. Everyone knows that AIDS was invented by the WHO, at an Army base in Maryland, as part of a massive federal government control plan. Look at all these blacks: they even try to steal conspiracies against whites.

“Today only a race-obsessed society will do, with State power enforcing official discrimination in favor of blacks. Of course, there are racist whites. But outside of a miniscule band of KKK members, there are few whose racism is the defining fact of their lives. Too many D.C. blacks, on the other hand, are charter members in what we might call the BBB. Washington–with its racist government, racist radio, racist ministers, racist universities, and racist attitudes–is the black New Jerusalem, so no white is supposed to question it. Or so says William Raspberry. Excuse me for not buying it.”

A Personal Letter from Ron Paul About How You Can Give Him More Money

We return to the nut of all this, Ron Paul, who allegedly made millions off these newsletters, bilking the undereducated, paranoid and racist for more “unreal” paper dollars, has one last appeal:

Dear Supporter,

As a special thank you, if you subscribe before the Presidential Convention on September 5, you may have my newsletter for an unprecedented 50% off ($49.50)!

– Ron

And we arrive at the beginning.

The is the nugget and the nugatory fact of the Ron Paul experience: everything inspirational and aspirational about the Ron Paul candidacy is as nakedly fungible as every word above. When he was not in office, for $49.95, you could buy his book about how to be scared shitless about government and invest in the same gold mines he already had shares in. Now that he’s in government and angling for a higher position, you are even more compelled to stave off categorical economic collapse by investing even more than $49.95 in his campaign. And if his campaign goes nowhere, try googling something other than “RON PAUL” and whether candidates can pocket donations.

Still, on any map of moral behavior, this is a man who merits no one’s esteem. To return to a comment above, he either believes these paranoiac, divisive, racial and sexually malicious things and wrote them himself, or he recognized the cynical political value in trading in them, or he was so stupid that not a word above was written by him, yet it carried his name anyway.

There is no win here. There is no good here. Any bargain you strike where the above doesn’t matter is a bargain you strike by saying, “I accept the above. I accept it and consider it immaterial to my wants going forward.” There are precious few and very slender platforms on which that kind of thin-sliced appreciation can stand without wobbling and falling into a ditch. For almost everybody, that bargain trades away your own goodness. That bargain shelves your credibility as a human being. It means you lose.

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Iran-Contra and the Religious Right

Oliver North worshipped in a charismatic Episcopal Church in Virginia called Church of the Apostles. It turn out to be one of those Shepherding churches, a cult movement within the charismatic movement. North’s pastor was Rev. Brian Cox, a National Coordinator of Sharing of Ministries Abroad (SOMA), a right-wing political orgainization in guise of of an active missionary work in South America. Their agenda was to fight communism in South America.

In 1976, Jesus freaks from Gospel Outreach of California came to Guatemala after its earthquake. They did not waste time aiding earthquake victims, they were trying to convert Catholics to Pentecostals. One early convert was Rios Montt,who became leader of Gospel Outreach Verbo Church. He smuggled Bibles into Nicaruagua after Sandisitas took over the country.

Christian Emergency Relief Teams (CERT) started in Carlsbad, California in 1974 to aid Honduras hurricane victims, but after Sandistas took over Nicaruagua, they switched to aiding the contras. They have even accompanied contras to battle. Templo Biblico in San Jose, California was a front for Full Gospel Businessman International and World Vision. It became a CIA conduit to contras in Costa Rico.

Glendale, California based Transworld Mission (TWM), headed by John Olson .When Somoza was head of Nicaragua, Olson produced rabid anti-communist radio broadcasts in US, supporting Somoza. He became friends with Oliver North.

When Oliver North became an officer, he joined Officers’ Christian fellowship, founded by Ret. Army Major Gen. Clay T. Buckingham on 170 US bases. it was a shepherding organization.

1979-83-NCPAC Financial Director Carl “Spitz” Channel formed a coalition of religious right wing organizations to raise funds for contras. Lutheran pastor Rchard Nieuhaus influenced IRD in 1981 to supporting contras.

In 1982- Charles Moser, Secretary-Treasuru of Free Congress and Education Foundation, formed a committee to support the contras. This committee had Enrique Ruedo of Free Congress, Dan Tefferman of Freedom Leadership Foundation, Reed Irvine of AIM, and Lynn Francis Bouchery of Council for Inter-American Security. Jimmy Hasan, Director of Campus Crusade in Nicaragua 1982-85, was working for the contras.

By 1984, the most prominent private donor to contras was CBN. Capt. Robert Warren, retired Navy counterinsurgency specialist, was head of Operation Blessing. He was also formerly of Operation Phoenix, the CIA assassination group in Vietnam. North, Secord, and Poindexter were also in Operation Phoenix. They had ties to John Singlaub, head of World Anti-communist League (WACL) and a former member of NSC. He was a coordinator for private aid to the contras. North went around US trying to get aid for contras and build domestic propaganda for the contras. CBN contributed $3 million to Nicaraguan Patriotic Association. Its president was Juan Sacasa, Houston representative for the contras. Harry Aderholt, the Air Force officer who pioneered Operation Phoenix, headed the Air Commandos Association( the Air Force Green Berets) and was supplying the Salvadoran Army against its rebels. Aderholt, with Warren and Operation Blessing opened a clinic in Nebay region in Guatemala that turned out to be a de facto concentration camp for the Indians.

Dr. Alton Ochsner,Jr. convinced Moral Majority to the contras cause. They started “Family Forum” in San Francisco, an organization to support contras. They formed Friends of America (FOA) in 1984. Ochsner became head of Carribean Commission, a contra support group. He introduced Jenkins to Council for National Policy, which was supporting the contras. Ochsner father was a well-known white supremicist. FOA supplies were flown by the National Guard of Mississippi and Louisana at taxpayers’ expense and illegal activity.

In Sept.,1985, Robertson asked Reagan on the 700 Club, who was the person going to Tehran to talk about hostages. Reagan admitted sending someone to Tehran to trade hostages for arms. That “someone” was Oliver North. He was accompanied by Robert Marrow, an CIA agent allegedly on the plot to kill JFK, and was part of Operation Phoenix and in Operation Blessing. Jimmy Hasan was arrested by Sandistas after an IRD meeting on Oct. 31, 1985. He fled and appeared on the 700 Club. He recieved money from North’s NSC safe. North introduced Derstine to Calero and Bermudez in a secret map room. Rev. Derstine was a televangelist. Calero and Bermudez are contra leaders. FOA leaders generate public support and coordinate private aid from US church groups for contras, though that was illegal at the time.Woody Jenkins went around claiming Sandistas were dictators.

In 1986, FOA used Kelly Air Force Base and airlifted at taxpayers’ expense 100,00 pounds of supplies to Honduras for the contras. The planes were accompanied by National Guards of Mississippi and Louisana. FOA also supplied SETCO, an CIA airline for the contras. Operation Blessing supplied gas and drove vehicles for the contras. CERT accompanied contras to their battles.

David Cousas and Oliver North spoke at National Religious Broadcasters (NRB) to get support for the contras. 1985-John Olson was Oliver North’s guest at the White House for a briefing on the contra war. Olson was there on behalf of NRB. NRB became staunch advocate of direct US military intervention against Nicaragua. Before the Hausenfus crash, Robertson knew about the contras were being supplied by Israel and South Africa. This was before the press found out. AFC Richard Viguerie lobbied for the contras in Congress and claimed North was innocent. Singlaub and Micharl Clifford (Robertson’s CBN staff member) were among AFC members. North was keynote speaker for Bev LeHayes’ Concerned Women of America (CWA), urging them to aid the contras. Barbara Abbey, CWA,co-sponsored a fund-raiser for contra leader Calero. CWA sponsored a contra refugee camp in Costa Rico. CWA got money from Pepsico, Levi, Avon,Amex, Subaru, Sun Co., United Bank of Colorado, and Government Employees Insurance.

Jose Gonzales Souza started Semilla (“Seed”) at the Chesepeake, Va, office of Pat Robertson’s National Perspective Institute. Souza was a graduate of Robertson’s Regent University and lead its Hispanic Studies.CBN gave him money to start Semilla to train and organize Christian leaders in the Western Hemisphere, especially in Latin America.S emilla got $1,714.34 from Spitz Channell’s National Endowment for Preservation of Liberty (NEPL), part of Oliver North’s multifaceted procontra propaganda project.

Robert Reilly, Reagan’s liason to the Catholics, denounced liberation theology. He worked with former Maryknoll worker Geraldine O’Leary Macras (who worked for Costa Rican contras). He also worked with Humberto Belli, former editor of La Prensa. Humberto Belli started Puebla Instiute in Michigan in co-operation with Sword of Spirit (Catholic charismatic group) and Ciudad de Dios (“City of God”), the Hispanic version of Sword of Spirit. Belli claimed there was religious persecution in Nicaragua. CIA paid Belli to do a film called Nicaragua Christians under Fire. Belli was advisor to pro-contra Archbishop Bravo. He had Bravo doing mass for contras in Miami. Archbishop Bravo had ties with W.R. Grace Corporation. He also got funds from North. Robert Pickus and George Weigel formed National Endowment for Democracy (NED), spending millions of taxpayers’ money funding Nicaragua’s opposition press. Weigel served as advisor for USIA. Pickus formed World without War Council (WWWC), which promoted US tour of Belli and contra leader Arturo Cruz.

1987- Bev Lehaye met Violetta Chamarro, editor of La Prensa, pledging support for the contras. Rev Geoff Donnan of Carribean Christian Ministries organized anti-Sandistas clergy in Nicaragua using private Christian schools there. Donnan worked under sponsorship of Paul lindstrom, a John Birch organizer.

1986- Donnan declared liberation theology as Satanic. He planned to publish a “Christian ” history of Nicaragua, written by Belli. Contra leader Joseph Douglas joined CERT. A few days before Swaggert resigned, he went to Nicaragua and saw the children victims of contra attacks. He withdrew his support of the contras and criticized them for their inhumanity. Suddenly, Marvin Gorman came up with pictures of Swaggert with a prostitute. Meanwhile, the contras smuggled illegal drugs into the US.

Politics make strange bedfellows. This proves it! In 1961, after a military coup of a democratic government in South Korea that brought Park to power, KCIA decided to organize and utilize a church called Unification Church, as a political tool of the right wing military government. They wanted to export this church to the US. They asked Rev. Bill Bright to help organize it and chose a leader of it. Bill Bright choose Rev. Sun Myung Moon to head it. Moon had been a friend of Bright for a long time. Numerious Moonies served as aids to various Congresspersons since then.

In 1977, Richard Viguerie got a contract for “Children’s Relief Fund”, sponsored by the Moonies’ Korean Culture and Freedom Foundation. Less than 6.3% of the donations went to the needy, the rest went to Viguerie’s pockets and the Moonies. The biggest chunk went to Viguerie.

In 1986, Moonies paid Viguerie to handle the distribution of their magazine Insight.

In 1975,Christian Freedom Foundation founded by Bill Bright, Richard Viguerie, Richard Devos, Arthur DeMoss, Rep. John Conlan, Ed McAteer. The money came from Moonies.

In 1983, American Coalition for Traditional Values (ACTV) began with Tim LaHaye, Falwell, Robertson, Bakker, Robison, Humbard, and Swaggert. The money that started it came from the Moonies. It was right after Gary Jarmin, ex-Moonie, introduced Tim LaHaye to Col. Bo Pak, Rev. Moon’s right hand man.

1984-Rev. Moon was arrested for his illegal business activities. Moonies formed Coalition for Religious Freedom (CRF), a front for defense of Rev. Moon. LaHaye, Falwell< Ben Armstrong, Robison, Humbard, James Kennedy, and Swaggert were on the executive board. Paul Crouch and Hal Lindsey joined in 1986.

Ron Goodwin, a top Falwell aid left the Moral Majority to work on Insight in 1985.

1987-Col. Pak paid 10.06 million dollars for Vigueries’ offices. Christian Voice was in Moonies pay and headed by Gary Jarmin. Pres. Robert Grant and the Christian Voice joined the Moonies to form American Freedom Coalition.

1988-Grant made ties with Anti-Bolshevik Bloc of Nations. It was a group made up of Who’s Who of WWII Nazis.

Coaliton on Revival (COR) was founded by Dennis Peacocke, a Bob Mumford disciple, and Jay Grimstead, an ex-Moonie. The money came from Moonies.

Mumford promoted dominion theology (Reconstructionism). Gary North of COR was a member of the John Birch Society.

The neo-Nazi church Identity’s rock group Legacy had entertained COR’s meetings and parties.

!985-While “Father” Dowling was passing off as a Catholic priest, he spoke at Grace Luthern Chruch in El Cerrito, CA. Its pastor, Ralph Moelling, was a member of the Moonies’ CAUSA. Dowling served as national advisory board on CAUSA, which was paying Dowling’s travel expenses. Dowling frequently met Pat Buchanan at the White House and Bretton Sciaroni, a confident of John Singlaub. Dowling kept close ties with Linda Guell, director of Western Goals, which was involved in North’s contra fundraising. It was also a John Birch front.

1987-Christian Emergency Relief Teams(CERT) recieved a large amount of money from the Moonies.

1986-Moonies received money from South Africa, $45million, in exchange for South Africa’s interest in Washington Times, the Moonie paper.

1982-James Whelan, editor of Moonie-owned Sacramento Union, went to the Washington Times. Back in 1961, he was part of a secret UPI team in Miami that covered the failed US invasion of Cuba. He was PR man for ITT, when it helped CIA overthrow Allende and set up Pinochet. Whelan resigned the Washington Times in 1984, and worked briefly for CBN.

Reed Irvine wrote for Moonie-owned papers. Richard Zone was also with Christian Voice. Grant had ties with Anita Bryant, an anti-gay crusade. Tim LaHaye, Bob Billings, and Cal Thomas, an ex-Moonie, was with the Christian Voice. Billings and Thomas was also with Moral Majority.

Shepherding

In 1965,in South Korea, Paul Yonggi Cho started a sysytem called Shepherding. He was inspired by the organizational methods of Rev. Moon. He wrote the book Successful Home Cell Groups in 1981, based on his ideas of shepherding.

1970-Argentina. An Assembly of God pastor, Rev. Juan Carlos Ortiz, established a new church, Body of Christ. It had a highly structured authority from small cells led by a “shepherd”, who was in turn led by another shepherd and so on in a pyramid form of command. It was from reading about what Cho was doing.

1972- Rev. Bob Mumford visited Ortiz’s church and was impressed. He brought Shepherding to America. He was a Bible teacher in Ft. Lauderdale,Florida.. Mumford,with four other associates, moved to Mobile, Alabama, directing the Christian Growth Ministries. They saw in the Charimatic Movement too much chaos. Shepherding would bring discipline.

Most leaders of the Shepherding Movement required their members to disclose intimate details of their lives and submit to the Shepherd (no female was allowed to be a Shepherd).The shepherd directed all facets of their followers’ lives.

Pat Robertson denounced the Shepherding Movement, but he invited Don Basham, one of the Shepherd leaders, to the 700 Club in 1987.

They have a magazine called New Wine. Cult Awareness Network declared they are a cult.

Mumford promoted dominion theology or Reconstrutionism, which was trying to get theocracy in America.Rev. Peacocke was one of Mumford’s disciples and his Coalition on Revival (COR) promoted Reconstructionism.

Robertson and the New World Order

A few years back, Robertson wrote a book called New World Order, his take on the Conpiracy Theory. He said that secret organizations are working together to make a one world government. This government will try to eliminate Christianity. He mentioned the illuminati, the Bavarian group started in 1776 by Adam Weishuapt and was disbanded in 1787. Robertson is one of those who believed Illuminati never disbanded, but behind the scenes of worldly events.

He said the Warburgs, Rockefellers, and Morgans created te Federal reserve Board and the IRS. They were out to change the Constitution. House, an employee of Rothchilds, started Council for Foreign Relations and talked Wilson into participating in WWI. House helped formed League of Nations. Adolf Hitler was trained by occult groups, so said Pat Robertson. The British Labour Party socialized Britain after WWII. Sweden became socialized. Robertson said that Ford Foundation wants US to merge with the USSR.

CFR infiltrated our government and the Federal Reserve Board. Also the Foundations (Ford,Rockefeller, Carnegie,etc.), our banks, our universities, and our newspapers.Marxism is its goal.Helped Communism to take control of Russia, China, East Europe, Central America, and Africa. Some are motivatied by Satan, so claimed Robertson.CIA under CFR control.

Then, Robertson turned to Trilateral Commission, formed to link Japan, US, and Europe.Robertson mentioned International Finance ( a buzz word for Jews) as backing US Communist Party.

Robertson said Communism was brainchild of German Jewish Intellectuals.

Robertson talked about Great Seal of US. He said the eye above the Pyramid is Eye of Osiris ( actually its Eye of Horus). A select few was planning to to replace Christian order, said Pat Robertson.

Robertson talked about roots of Communism were in the Illuminati. They staged the French Revolution. He mentioned Moses Hess, a radical Jewish rabbi, who influenced Engels. Robertson said Hess was an Illuminatus. He went on and mentioned Nesta Webster. who is a favorite author of John Birch Society and a member of British Fascist Society.

Robertson claimed Solidarity was a front for the Communist Party.

John Ruskin and his pupil, Cecil Rhodes. With Rothchild funding, Cecil Rhodes founded DeBeers. He created Rhodes Scholarship. Rhodes created British Roundtable.

Robertson mentioned Club of Rome as one of those groups working for one world government. He mentioned John Dewey teaching ethics different from JudeoChristian. New Age movement is a front for this One World conspiracy. He claimed the first Masonic legislator was Buddha. Illuminati borrowed from Jewish Cabala.

Rockefeller funded Planned Parenthood’s start. Robertson claimed that Muslems, Hindus, and Buddhists would undermine US.

Robertson claimed Lincoln was killed because he did not US government to loan from banks. Robertson said European Bankers(Jews) and money lords of US had Booth kill Lincoln. Booth was in employ of European bankers.

Robertson stole so much from John Birch literature and Nesta Webster works, its a wonder he wasn’t sued for plagerism. Robertson claimed occult came from Babylon and Egypt. Other times he said the occult came from China and India. He can’t seem to make up his mind. Historian Will Durant debunks the idea that Illuminati was connected to French Revolution. Many historians since then also debunk that idea. Robertson liked the old idea that only property owners could vote. That was a rule to prevent blacks and other minorities from voting, also keeping the poor from voting.

Well, in Robertson’s view, the Protocols of Learned Elders of Zion was real, that old Anti-Semitic forgery. I find this book both racist and contradictory. He is close to Mussolini here, with some borrowed ideas from Adolf Hitler, who was a believer in the Protocols, too.

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Michael Parenti: Must We Adore Vaclav Havel?

From the Red Phoenix:

No figure among the capitalist restorationists in the East has won more adulation from U.S. officials, media pundits, and academics than Vaclav Havel, a playwright who became the first president of post-Communist Czechoslovakia and later president of the Czech Republic. The many left-leaning people who also admire Havel seem to have overlooked some things about him: his reactionary religious obscurantism, his undemocratic suppression of leftist opponents, and his profound dedication to economic inequality and unrestrained free-market capitalism.

Raised by governesses and chauffeurs in a wealthy and fervently anticommunist family, Havel denounced democracy’s “cult of objectivity and statistical average” and the idea that rational, collective social efforts should be applied to solving the environmental crisis. He called for a new breed of political leader who would rely less on “rational, cognitive thinking,” show “humility in the face of the mysterious order of the Being,” and “trust in his own subjectivity as his principal link with the subjectivity of the world.” Apparently, this new breed of leader would be a superior elitist cogitator, not unlike Plato’s philosopher, endowed with a “sense of transcendental responsibility” and “archetypal wisdom.” Havel never explained how this transcendent archetypal wisdom would translate into actual policy decisions, and for whose benefit at whose expense.

Havel called for efforts to preserve the Christian family in the Christian nation. Presenting himself as a man of peace and stating that he would never sell arms to oppressive regimes, he sold weapons to the Philippines and the fascist regime in Thailand. In June 1994, General Pinochet, the man who butchered Chilean democracy, was reported to be arms shopping in Czechoslovakia – with no audible objections from Havel.

Havel joined wholeheartedly in George Bush’s Gulf War, an enterprise that killed over 100,000 Iraqi civilians. In 1991, along with other [e]astern European pro-capitalist leaders, Havel voted with the United States to condemn human rights violations in Cuba. But he has never uttered a word of condemnation of rights violations in El Salvador, Columbia, Indonesia, or any other U.S. client state.

In 1992, while president of Czechoslovakia, Havel, the great democrat, demanded that parliament be suspended and he be allowed to rule by edict, the better to ram through free-market “reforms.” That same year, he signed a law that made the advocacy of communism a felony with a penalty of up to eight years imprisonment. He claimed the Czech constitution required him to sign it. In fact, as he knew, the law violated the Charter of Human Rights which is incorporated into the Czech constitution. In any case, it did not require his signature to become law. In 1995, he supported and signed another undemocratic law barring communists and former communists from employment in public agencies.

The propagation of anticommunism has remained a top priority for Havel. He led “a frantic international campaign” to keep in operation two U.S.-financed, cold war radio stations, Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty, so they could continue saturating Eastern Europe with their anticommunist propaganda.

Under Havel’s government, a law was passed making it a crime to propagate national, religious, and CLASS hatred. In effect, criticisms of big moneyed interests were now illegal, being unjustifiably lumped with ethnic and religious bigotry. Havel’s government warned labor unions not to involve themselves in politics. Some militant unions had their property taken from them and handed over to compliant company unions.

In 1995, Havel announced that the ‘revolution’ against communism would not be complete until everything was privatized. Havel’s government liquidated the properties of the Socialist Union of Youth – which included camp sites, recreation halls, and cultural and scientific facilities for children – putting the properties under the management of five joint stock companies, at the expense of the youth who were left to roam the streets.

Under Czech privatization and “restitution” programs, factories, shops, estates, homes, and much of the public land was sold at bargain prices to foreign and domestic capitalists. In the Czech and Slovak republics, former aristocrats or their heirs were being given back all lands their families had held before 1918 under the Austro-Hungarian empire, dispossessing the previous occupants and sending many of them into destitution. Havel himself took personal ownership of public properties that had belonged to his family forty years before. While presenting himself as a man dedicated to doing good for others, he did well for himself. For these reasons some of us do not have warm fuzzy feelings toward Vaclav Havel.

From Michael Parenti’s Blackshirts and Reds (1997) pp. 97-99.

The lynching of Gaddafi: Image of human sacrifice and return to barbarism

December 11, 2011

The war for “democracy” is the postmodern version of “holy war”, naturally sacred democratic character of its U.S. sponsor

By: Jean-Claude Paye (pink-blindada.info)

At the time of the dissemination of images of the lynching of Muammar Gaddafi, our leaders showed signs of a strange pleasure. “Strange Fruit” [1], such images immediately bring to mind the memory of others, the hanging of Saddam Hussein, executed on the very day of Eid al-Adha, the Muslim feast of sacrifice. Both cases we are immersed in a religious structure, replacing the sacrifice of the ram [2] for human sacrifice, restores the original image of the Goddess-Mother. Invest in addition to the Old Testament and nullifies the act of speaking. This reduces religion without the fetish book [3].

Another has no law and is a simple invitation to the enjoyment of death as a spectacle.

Thanks to the image, the will to power is unlimited. The transgression ceases to have limits, as in the rite of sacrifice, in space and time and becomes constant. It echoes the ongoing violation of the right order from the founding act of the attacks of September 11, 2011.

Locked away in the tragedy

The way he was treated the body of Muammar el-Qaddafi reveals the tragedy experienced by the Libyan people. His body was subject of two special treatment, a double violation of the symbolic order that was inserted in that society. Instead of being buried on the day of his death, as required by Muslim rites, his body remained exposed to the gaze of the curious for 4 days in a refrigerator. This exhibition was followed by burial in a secret place, despite the request that his wife had sent to the UN that will be handed over the body.

This double decision of the new “power” Libyan people put in a situation that already known in Greek tragedy. By preventing the family buried the body, the new political power takes over the space of the symbolic order. By the removal of any link between the “law of men” and the “law of the gods”, the National Transitional Council mergers and claims the monopoly of the sacred, thereby putting politics above.

The decision of the NTC family to prevent the realization of the funeral and the corpse exhibit aims to suppress the significance of the body to keep in view only the meaning of death. The order to enjoy the image of murder should not find any limit. The fetish perpetuates repetition compulsion. The drive then becomes independent and goes, regardless of one image to another image of the dead in the image of the execution of death. Its function is to increase the will to power.

Owning what should be

The desecration of the body is therefore one element of your fetish. The essential thing is the pictures of the lynching of Gaddafi. Captured through a cell phone, these images occupy the media space and are constantly reproduced. Real-time break in our daily lives. We capture in spite of ourselves. We then we ourselves become part of the stage and that in film drive, lynching only becomes an act of sacrifice by the gaze-object. The images show people that take pictures and enjoy the show filmed. These people exhibit the instant of the gaze. What is presented as an offering is not the object but the sense that it offers to the eye, to own what should be seen.

The lynching as an image is a Western tradition. When shooting his victims, members of the Ku Klux Klan and human sacrifice exhibited as a spectacle. The treatment given to Gaddafi is part of that ‘culture’. It differs, however, one aspect of it. The erection of the actions of the KKK had a strong ritual, transmitted the image of an underground social order.

In the case of the lynching of Gaddafi, the captured images via cell phones are free of any significant, become more real than reality, they colonize reality that actually exists, then only annihilation. These images show the fragmentation of society and thus, the omnipotence of imperial action. They show a world that is invested permanently. We face the horror and we inject the psychosis. Destroy any relationship with the other and only appeal to Interior, monads whose consent to seek.

Unlike a language that we join a “we”, the image goes to each individual separately. Prevents any social bond, all forms of symbolization. Is the paradigm of a society governed by the monads. These images reveal so much about the conflict itself not only on the state of our societies, as well as future plans for Libya: a permanent war.

The sacrifice of a scapegoat

These images show the execution of a scapegoat. Update the notion of mimetic violence that Girard developed in his interpretation of the New Testament [4]. Through repetition of the sacrifice, the images we impose a purposeless violence. This becomes compulsive. While the scapegoat serves as a catalyst to violence, the truth is that, contrary to what Girard says, can not stop it. Peace will only be temporary and not more than the preparation of a new war. Every sacrifice is a call to the completion of another. After the destruction of Libya must come that of Syria, then Iran … Violence becomes infinite and founder.

As Christians in the statements, comments on media images of the lynching of Gaddafi become the scapegoat scapegoat. If Gaddafi is the victim of a lynching because “they wanted.” Not a victim of external aggression but supposedly resulted from a domestic law. His execution is not the result of his will to resist but the fulfillment of personal destiny. René Girard also enunciated this procedure to refer to Christ. The figure of Christ leads to a shift in the notion of scapegoat to the sacrificial victim offered to “purge” the original sin.

That way, free of any debt symbolic of all the social body, these images and comments on them participating in systematic investment of symbolic Law, and the permanent state of exception, which was established after the attacks of 11 in September 2001. Sacralized political power supplants the symbolic order.

Regression: the language of unification image of the goddess-Mother

These images make us return to a stage where human sacrifice was central in the social organization. Constitute a return to the main obsession of unification with the mother [5]. Ethnological work, and psychoanalysis, we have shown that human sacrifice is a return to a maternal structure. Love and sacrifice are the attributes of a social organization that does not distinguish between order and political and symbolic order. Paradigms are a matriarchal society that operates here the fusion of the individual with maternal power.

These images are part of a long Christian tradition of investment that serves as the foundation of the Old Testament. The story of Abraham is the moment that establishes the prohibition of human sacrifice. The death of Christ, however, is the investment of the sacrifice of Isaac. Instead of replacing the animal child-Messiah is the son who becomes a ram [6].

In the Old Testament, the sacrificial animal’s death is the death of primitive god. It symbolizes the sacrifice and a real shift toward language: “If there is a god, this is in the words of alliance (language)” [7]. This movement opens the existence of a producer of metaphor, transformation of reality. The Shift and metaphor, which are at the core of this story, are the procedures for establishing the law of language [8]. The law’s language is no registration of the identity of the word and object. In the conflict of Libya, we are situated, from the beginning, outside of language. Gaddafi is a tyrant, because they qualify. The massacres of his regime need not be verified, simply affirming that happen. The image of the dictator is sufficient. It integrates faces no contradiction or anything real. It’s more real than reality.

The aim of any symbolic order

The law of language is the recognition that language is above all the other. It is the acknowledgment by man of his own incompleteness. Once the concrete is symbolization, instilling individual’s dependence upon the other, they start a process of mutual recognition and, in this way, the formation of a humane society [9]. This introduces a symbolic debt [10], a system of relationships in which the individual finds his place and where it’s not your own father. This debt, as opposed to original sin, has a unifying character as it places man in relation to the other from becoming.

Gaddafi was imperfectly inserted into the global capitalist system. Still worked in accordance with values ​​from the traditional society, especially the gift as a creator of social ties. He was badly affected by the abandonment of his “friends” Sarkozy, Berlusconi and Tony Blair … [11]. Probably thought that the gifts had made them had established a mutual recognition system that guaranteed some protection. This shows that he had not understood the nature of capitalism. In this system, every social relationship is abolished. While in ancient societies the exchange of objects serves as foundation to the relationship between men, in capitalism the commodity and money are subjects. Those who received the gifts of Gaddafi could only see them as advances for something that by right. The dark gods of this society can not be other than the markets.

Images of enjoyment

By the law of language, man is distinguished from the nature of the goddess-mother who has no inside or outside. The murder, instead of being founder, is abolished and give access to the word. Is then established human order which differs from the divine order. The individual ceases to be an all-powerful son. It is separated from the maternal power.

The images of the lynching of Gaddafi us back, by contrast, the original and omnipotence. We enrolled in a religious structure before the achievement was the ban on slaughter. These clichés again plunge into violence incestuous, in the enjoyment of the drive haptic consuming [12]. The imperative of enjoyment overrides policy here. The most significant example is provided by the Hillary Clinton interview, those who accept these images as an offering. Full of joy, proclaim his own omnipotence and expressed his joy at the lynching: “We came, we saw and he [Gaddafi] died!” Before the cameras and microphones of the CBS [13].

The violence done to the “Roadmap” Libya is also for other Western leaders, a propitious moment to express the satisfaction that they invade and enjoy the success of your initiative. “We will not shed tears for Gaddafi,” said Alain Juppe, the French Minister of Foreign Affairs [14].

The tortured body as an icon of violence

The positions made by our leaders after the release of these images confirm that the real target of this war was not the protection of the population but the elimination of Gaddafi. The platform of Barack Obama, Nicolas Sarkozy and David Cameron, jointly published April 15 in The Times, The International Herald Tribune and Le Figaro, we had announced however that “It is not Gaddafi expelled by force. But it is impossible to imagine that Libya may have a future with Gaddafi “[15]. Their violence [Gaddafi] would then be essentially the failure to relinquish power, though inconceivable to remain in it. His image supposedly symbolizes the tyranny because he could not get Western leaders love the Libyan population. “He (Gaddafi) behaved very aggressively. He was offered good conditions for surrender, and rejected, “Juppé said.

The media tell us that “dictators always end well.” The marks of violence make it appear invisible. The lynching becomes proof that the victim was indeed a dictator. These stigmas show us what we never saw: the evidence of the massacres that Gaddafi was going to commit. Are an indication of their intentions to do what NATO used as an argument to justify its intervention.

This would link the massacres perpetrated by the Colonel with the image of his bloodied body. The marks of violence on the living body, and later on the corpse, then would not the result of the violence of the ‘liberators’ but the fruit of the blood shed by Gaddafi.

The violence of the crime shows that it is indeed a vengeance. It also shows us that the perpetrators of this violence are in fact victims and that this murder has a sacred character.

The display of unlimited power

The images of slaughter display allow our leaders limitless power. The French Defense Minister Gerard Longuet, French aviation revealed that, at the request of Staff of NATO, was “arrested” or be bombed, the caravan in which the fugitive was Gaddafi [16]. The French minister claims and a flagrant violation of Security Council resolution of the UN. For his part, Alain Juppe had the luxury of recognizing that the objective of the invasion was none other than put in power by CNT: “The operation must end now since our objective, that is to accompany the forces of CNT in the liberation of its territory, has already been reached “[17].

The success of the NATO offensive was accompanied, by the victors, increasingly numerous statements in which recognized systematic rape, although justified, the decision of the Security Council of the UN. The philosopher, writer, director, strategist and diplomat Bernard-Henri Levy even acknowledged, in his book La guerre sans l’aimer [In Spanish: “War without desiring.” Translator’s Note.] “France directly or indirectly provided significant amounts of weapons to the Libyan rebels fighting to overthrow Muammar Gaddafi” [18]. These statements illustrate the child’s psychic structure almighty State phallic maternal figure, a power without limits is beyond the word and, therefore, does not feel compelled to even respect their own commitments.

These positions recall the statements of Tony Blair when he acknowledged that there were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq but the war was justified because Saddam Hussein ended the reign of a dictator.

The victim and the sacrifice: the values ​​of a return to barbarism

The murder committed against Gaddafi, as an act of “revenge of the victims”, results will not be judged Gaddafi. This result coincides with the interests of oil companies and Western governments, whose close ties to the regime of Colonel will not therefore to light before the public. The main result of the substitution of the organization of a trial against [Qaddafi] International Criminal Court by the images of lynching is that instead of being arrested by the word, violence becomes infinite. Libya, like Iraq and Afghanistan, will become a scene of perpetual war. With regard to our own political systems, they are immersed in a state of emergency. This is accompanied by the appearance of absolute power, whose political action beyond any order related to the right.

A military intervention undertaken in the name of the love of Western leaders by the people victims of a “tyrant” [19] and display magnified by the slaughter of the latter is a symptom of our society regressing into barbarism.

Treatment of the sacrifice of Gaddafi as iconic image confirms the Christian character of a war waged in the name of love for the victims. The destruction of Libya by NATO forces is inserted into the long tradition of the Crusades, the wars against the symbolic law undertaken in the name of the God-man [20]. These have already resulted from a reorganization of Europe under papal authority [21]. Today, this conflict, even more than the Iraq war, it implies total submission of the European countries to the American Empire.

The war for democracy is the postmodern version of the “holy war” sacred not because the enemy were the “infidels” but because the Pope ordered, as infallible representative of God-man. Today, the sacred character of the aggression comes naturally democratic character of its U.S. sponsor, whose president received the Nobel Peace Prize before he made the slightest political act. This award establishes the President of the United States as a Christian icon, as the very embodiment of peace and democracy. It is not in this version of the sacredness of man created in the image and likeness of God, but the image of himself and his peaceful and democratic nature.

Notes:

[1] Title of a song composed in 1946 Abel Meeropol Abel Meeropol couple in denouncing the Necktie Party (hanging) that were organized in the southern United States and attended the white dress to a party. Performed by Billie Holiday, the spread of this song was a huge success.

[2] By brandishing a knife to slay his son, Abraham found a ram in place of the child. He who must die is the goat, the animal-father, the primal father, that is a ghostly line of ancestors, while an archaic divinity, a ferocious form of God who constantly demands sacrifice. in Jean-Daniel Causse, “Le christianisme et la violence des dieux obscurs, liens et écarts” AIEMPR, XVIIe violences et congrès international Religions, Strasbourg, 10-14 July 2006.

[3] Paul Laurent Assoun, Le fétichisme, Que sais-je?, PUF, 1994. “I ou l’objet Fétiche au pied de la lettre” in Éclat du fetish, Revue du Littoral 42.

[4] Rene Girard, Violence et le sacre The, Le Seuil, 1972.

[5] The primary significance of the desire of the mother is usually rejected by the replacement of the meaning of the name of the Father who enroll in language. Sacrifice is a return to that natural state of unification with the mother. In Alcouloumbré Catherine, “The metaphore paternelle” Espaces Lacan, Seminar 1998-1999.

[6] Bible Chrétienne, II, Commentaires, Anne Sigi Editions, 1990, p. 318, in Nicolas Buttet, L’école à l’Eucharistie des saints, Éditions de l’Emmanuel, Paris 2000, p. 38.

[7] Jean-Daniel Causse, “Le christianisme et la violence des dieux obscurs, liens et écarts” AIEMPR, XVIIe Religions et Congrès International Violence, Strasbourg 2006, p. 4.

[8] They reflect two fundamental operations of language replacement and combination-which are the paradigmatic axis and the syntagmatic axis. See: Vincent Calais, La theorie du langage dans l’enseignement of Jacques Lacan, L’Harmattan, Paris 2008, p. 59.

[9] Linard of Guertechin Hervé, “From d’une lecture du sacrifice d’Isaac (Genèse 22)” 38 51 987 Lumen Vito), p. 302-322.

[10] Contrary to original sin, that debt has a unifying character as it places man in relation to the other, from an evolution, not a native. The original sin, by contrast, contains an image of a superego.

[11] “Gaddafi préférait” juge qu’être mourir in Libya “even the ICC” [In Spanish, “Kadafhi preferred to” die in Libya to be tried “by the ICC.” NDT.], La Libre Belgique and AFP, November 31, 2011.

[12] “We sacrifice sur le noyau focus sacrificiel Originel: l’endocannibalisme” Soli in Pierre, Le sacrifice et d’civilization fondateur of individuation, abstract.

[13] “Hillary Clinton welcomed Muammar Gaddafi of la mort”, Voltaire Network, October 22, 2011.

[14] “The Death of Gaddafi to check the l’engagement de l’NATO Libye” LeMonde.fr with AFP, 21/10/2011.

[15] “Tribune of Barack Obama, David Cameron et Nicolas Sarkozy sur la Libye” Réseau Voltaire, April 15, 2011.

[16] “L’aviation française convoy him to Stopped Gaddafi affirmer Longuet”, TF1, October 20, 2011.

[17] “The Death of Gaddafi to check the l’engagement de l’NATO Libye” LeMonde.fr, op ..

[18] “Les coulisses of BHL selon la guerre,” La Libre Belgique, November 7, 2011.

[19] Jean-Claude Paye, Tülay Umay, “Faire la guerre au nom des victimes” Réseau Voltaire, May 9, 2011.

[20] Maurice Bellet, Le Dieu pervers, Desclée de Brouwer, Paris 1979, pp. 16-17.

[21] Paul Rousset, Les origins et les Croisade characters in the premiere, the Baconnière, Neuchâte11945

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America’s Laziest Fascist


May 20, 2004 | Michael Savage doesn’t get out much. The hardcore conservative radio host of “The Savage Nation” has always been a relatively reclusive figure. He doesn’t do book tours or publicity stunts. He’s not exactly approachable either: He claims to carry a gun with him at all times, and he doesn’t like nosy journalists asking for interviews.

Not that he’s the shy, retiring type. Lately, as the Iraq torture scandal has dominated the headlines, he has taken to calling Arabs “non-humans” and has called for the U.S. to kill “thousands” of Iraqi prisoners and nuke a random Arab capital. Deciding whether to pay attention to Savage has always been tricky, though. It’s never clear whether he really believes what he says in his tirades or if they are simply ploys for public outcry. His is currently the third-most-popular radio program in the nation. Nonetheless, it may be hard for Savage to sit by and watch the FCC’s crackdown against fellow jock Howard Stern effectively lift Stern’s profile even higher into the stratosphere. But Savage’s outbursts are often so unhinged, so vicious, that ignoring them seems irresponsible, especially when so many Americans apparently are nodding in agreement. So when I learned that Savage would be making his first public appearance in three years Saturday night, it seemed worth checking out, if only to see who was paying attention to him and why.

“Savage Uncensored,” as the event was called, marked the end of what’s been a crummy year for the once-hot Savage. Last March, MSNBC gave him a weekly program only to cancel it after four months when he labeled a caller a “sodomite” and told him to “get AIDS and die.” Then the San Francisco radio station that gave him his first big break dumped him and rubbed salt into the wound with billboards that depicted Savage morphing into Sean Hannity, beneath the slogan “Out With the Old, In with the New.” When a couple of anti-Savage Web sites started a boycott of his advertisers, his syndicator, Talk Radio Network, tried to revoke their domain names. When that failed, it tried to sue them for $1 million. That failed too.

Savage’s star may have faded, but it’s still too early to write him off, with “The Savage Nation” pulling in 6 million listeners a week. His latest screed against fifth columnists such as liberals, gays and atheists, “The Enemy Within,” debuted at No. 8 on the New York Times nonfiction list. But when it comes to the true measure of a talker’s cachet — buzz — Savage has slipped several notches in the past year. The anti-Savage sites are now dormant, their owners apparently satisfied that he would never make it back on TV. Fans and foes who once duked it out in Internet chat rooms appear to have moved on. These days, it seems the only people paying attention to Savage are diehard fans and perhaps a few incorrigible rubber-necking journalists.

Savage was scheduled to appear at the Concord Pavilion, an outdoor amphitheater in the suburban hills east of San Francisco. As a Metallica cover band called Creeping Death wailed, 5,000 or so people filed in to see him in the flesh. A quick look around made the demographics of the Savage Nation quickly apparent: Ninety percent were men and a good 95 percent were white. During the next three-and-a-half hours, there would be clear affirmation that they like gay jokes, Arab bashing and mass displays of patriotism. They will offer to share their freedom fries with a complete stranger. And when that stranger fails to boo liberals, holler the phrase “under God” during the Pledge of Allegiance or show sufficient enthusiasm for torturing Iraqis, they are polite enough not to drag him out to the parking lot and pummel him.

The crowd at Concord had paid as much as $100 for an evening of rhetorical red meat for the right-wing faithful. At first, we weren’t disappointed. But by the end of the night, I wasn’t the only one checking my watch.

Savage’s son, Russ Weiner, kicked off the show. With his spiky, dyed-orange hair and calculated scruffiness, he was reminiscent of Dr. Evil’s son Scott from the Austin Powers movies. The resemblance was confirmed when Weiner proclaimed, “I’m proud to be the son of Savage!” The 30-something Weiner is the founder of RockStar, an energy drink that he developed with his dad, drawing on Savage’s previous career as a Marin County herbalist and ethnobotanist named Michael Weiner. RockStar’s herbal liver-cleansing formula is supposed to enable drinkers to “party like a rock star,” which presumably means drinking and doping. Generous free samples had been passed out to the crowd on the way in. It lived up to its hype: The antifreeze-colored, cough-syrup-flavored beverage can only be enjoyed if you’re taking drugs.

But while Weiner has cashed in on other people’s bad behavior, he made it clear that he’s a family-values kind of guy. “Who’s heterosexual and proud?” he asked, prompting manly cheers. “If you’re not, hopefully you will be soon!” Before handing the stage over to the man he called “our leader,” he advised the audience how to handle his hot-tempered dad: “Let him know you love him!”

Love — or an acceptably heterosexual version of it — filled the air as Savage drove onto the stage in a classic red Cadillac convertible. He warmed up the audience by riffing on the day’s news, joking that “Shiite” should be spelled with one “I” and calling Muqtada al-Sadr “a fat bastard in a burka.” Dressed in a calfskin jacket, slouch hat and blue jeans, Savage was at ease, swearing freely and peppering his speech with “Hey, mans” that evoked his days as a North Beach beatnik wannabe. Whatever was in his coffee cup was certainly helping. When it ran dry, he called out, “I need a drink!” and a young woman sauntered over and poured champagne into the mug.

Like everyone else these days, Savage was fixated on Iraq and the Abu Ghraib prison abuse scandal. He managed to combine the two dominant conservative takes: The first being Rush Limbaugh’s insistence that what happened in Abu Ghraib was a harmless prank; the other being Oklahoma Sen. James Inhofe’s assertion that the prisoners got what they deserved.

These are tough interrogations?” Savage asked. “My father put me through tougher interrogations when I was 16!” He portrayed now-infamous Abu Ghraib prison guard Lynndie England as a poster girl for the war on terrorism — an embodiment of the idea that kicking Muslim ass can be fun. “Let’s hear it for Laurie [sic] England!” he cheered. “The leash chick! Hey man, she had a great time over there!” He couldn’t understand why liberals were so outraged. After all, he said, the acts of sexual humiliation and degradation that took place in Abu Ghraib were no more perverted than typical homosexual behavior. Try to follow his tortured logic: Savage was saying he didn’t mind the Abu Ghraib abuses because they were good clean fun, like gay sex, which he openly abhors.

Savage moved on to another of his favorite topics: bombing the bejeezus out of Iraq. Just a few days before the Uncensored event, he’d been ranting on the radio about dropping fiery death on civilians throughout Iraq and the Middle East. “I don’t give a damn if they hide behind their women’s skirts,” he foamed. “Wipe the women out with them! Because it’s our women who got killed on 9/11! And it’s our women who are gonna get killed tomorrow unless we get rid of the bugs who are destroying us!” Tonight, Savage continued to elaborate on this disturbing vision of how to win the war in Iraq. He said he fantasized of being woken up by the sound of B-1 and B-52 bombers flying over his house on their way to the Middle East. Imagining bombers overhead at 4 a.m., he gushed about these nocturnal missions, “It’s better than an orgasm — it is an orgasm!

Savage continued the psychological striptease, peeling off more layers of mainstream conservatism to expose his raging right-wing id. Though he has long billed himself as the original “compassionate conservative,” his brand of conservatism does not share George W. Bush’s pretense of caring about Muslim hearts and minds, much less lives. It appears that for Savage, the war in Iraq has nothing to do with spreading democracy or respecting human rights. It is about asserting American power by any means necessary, and screw what anyone else thinks. Predictably, and sadly, this notion went over well with the audience. When Savage blurted out, “Does anyone in this crowd give a shit about the Iraqis?” he was answered with a deafening “NO!

But if the first half of the event showcased Savage’s ability to stir the faithful, the second half was an object lesson in how a performer can take his audience — and his talent — for granted. Basically, he bombed. He spent nearly 20 minutes sitting in a stuffed chair in front of a television set, free-associating as he channel surfed. Seeing footage of Jordan’s King Abdullah, he screamed, “Kiss my ass! Shut the hell up!” To a soccer match in Spanish, he quipped, “Reminds me of my gardener.” It was about as entertaining as watching a middle-aged man yelling at his living room TV. Savage eventually realized things weren’t going well. “You don’t like this shit,” he said. “It’s a bad act.

Some fans — mostly older people and parents with small children — started to leave. If this were radio, they would probably already have changed stations. Most of the audience stuck around as Savage went into freefall, flailing wildly for something to catch his fans’ attention. He read from the Bible, played with his new puppy, moaned about his “mother issues” and asked for more booze. The evening’s low point came when he played the audiotape of Nicholas Berg’s beheading over the P.A. system. Berg’s pitiful, frenzied screaming filled the amphitheater. Having not heard or seen the gruesome tape before, I covered my ears in shock. I was not alone. If Savage was trying to incite the audience, it didn’t work. Playing the tape only revealed his desperation for a reaction, any reaction.

What made you come out on this night?” he asked. “You see the vultures circling this great nation. We feel the vultures flying over the Concord Pavilion.” And perhaps they could smell Savage dying on the stage below.

In a last-ditch attempt to rouse the listless crowd, Savage tried to root out some closet liberals. “Is there any asshole here who hates me, who’s gonna try and rush the stage?” he asked. It was a long way between the cheap seats and the stage, but I was getting tired and bored. Rushing the stage might have prolonged the evening by a few more minutes, so I stayed put. Hurrying off stage, Savage promised, “Wait till you see the close.

Luckily, the finale lasted all of 15 seconds. From the wings, Savage, obviously thinking he was off-mic, barked, “Play the Arab music!” A Middle Eastern tune blared as his red Cadillac lurched onto the stage. Savage was perched on the back seat, dressed in white robes and sunglasses, looking like a costume-party sheik. As the car disappeared off stage, he waved to the crowd, “Goodbye, infidels! I’ll see you in hell!” And with that, “Savage Uncensored” slouched to its perplexing though somehow fitting conclusion.

The house lights came on, revealing a few thousand blinking and bewildered fans — Savage had just resoundingly bombed on his home turf. “That’s it?” wondered one woman behind me, with real disappointment in her voice. “He said he was going to do Dr. UnSavage,” she said, referring to one of the jock’s longtime on-air characters. A couple of young guys shook their heads. “He misread his audience,” one said. His friend added, “He got into the champagne too much.” Maybe some RockStar would have helped.

His poor performance was not entirely surprising. Unlike his compatriots Bill O’Reilly, Sean Hannity and Dr. Laura, Savage often comes off as a remarkably amateurish and lazy showman. None of his colleagues — no matter how big their egos — would dare adlib their way through a two-hour live performance.

Savage’s unprofessionalism makes it easy for liberals to dismiss him as a crank. But that’s an easy way to overlook his ever-more xenophobic, homophobic and authoritarian political message. Ultimately, his invective may be what keeps his listeners coming back for more. Savage says what many mainstream conservatives can’t or won’t. As frustration with the Bush administration’s handling of the Iraq adventure and the war on terror grows, his message holds appeal for those who believe nothing but desperate measures will work against an increasingly hostile world. And so, Savage will keep calling for Iraqi prisoners to be sodomized with dynamite. If he’s lucky, such antics may score him a public showdown with the FCC. Or perhaps he will finally rant his way into oblivion. Considering the recent developments in Iraq, even if Savage waits another three years to emerge from his veil of heavily armed privacy, there may be no shortage of fodder for his bizarre stage spectacle and the audience it attracts.

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