By Charlie Johnston
It was a busy Memorial Day Weekend. May 30 is the Feast Day of St. Joan of Arc, but since it fell on a Sunday, was superceded by the Feast Day of the Holy Trinity. So, in America, we had a trinity of special celebrations this last weekend – Memorial Day, honoring those who gave their lives for our freedom, St. Joan of Arc’s Feast Day, who gave her life for the preservation of France, and the Feast Day of the Holy Trinity – through Whom all things subsist and in Whom, the Son gave His life that all of us may be truly free and heirs of His Kingdom. Seems to be an interesting theme to all this.
When St. Joan of Arc was sent to rescue France from England’s “hundred-year war” of extinction against it, she reversed the trajectory of the war nearly overnight by lifting the siege of Orleans. For years no one, including top French officials, had thought France could survive as anything but a province of England. After Joan’s lightning turnaround, no one (including the King of England) thought France could ever be subdued. Imagine the pathos of spending a hundred years of watching the vitality and lifeblood of your nation being stripped away. That is one of many reasons why Joan is such a great patron saint for these times.
Besides being the most actually racist president of the 20th Century, Woodrow Wilson held America’s founding principles and documents in contempt. He thought America should be ruled technocratically – and that the whole principle of a democratic republic was a fool’s game. The Democratic president was a vocal supporter of both segregation and the Ku Klux Klan – and a great admirer of the Confederacy. This was the focal point of his larger contempt for the average man and of individual liberty and self-government. His presidency was the true beginning of the assault on the very concept of self-government in America. It is now a hundred years since the end of his presidency. In that time, power has flowed away from the people and the states to the federal government at an ever-accelerating pace. Unelected “experts” no longer advise policy-makers, but dictate rules that all the little people must follow. Wilson’s dream has become our reality – and America’s nightmare.
Now, serious thinkers are wondering if America can survive much longer as a free, Democratic Republic. Certainly the left is frantically trying to snuff out all vestiges of self-government and individual liberty. Serious thinkers are now in the nascent stages of trying to figure out how a free people and free states can defend themselves from the depredations of a society whose institutions have run amok. At American Greatness, Jeremy Clark makes a compelling argument that the left has already seceded from the union. Last week Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC) grilled big bankers on what, specifically, they objected to in Georgia’s election reform law. They had no answer. When revolutionary pressures against institutions rise from the institutions, themselves, it is a classic case of cowards feeding the crocodile in the hopes it will eat them last, as Winston Churchill said about the futility of appeasement.
In these circumstances, the question becomes how best to preserve liberty for yourself and your family until sanity once more prevails. I can’t help but think refusing to secede from Constitutional self-governance and individual liberty under God and natural law, even when federal officials and social institutions are doing so in a mad rush, is the beginning of preserving our culture. That means actively aligning with those institutions and states which vigorously defend and fight for liberty and self-governance. It means that the dozen or so states which have adopted partial nullification in response to unconstitutional edicts coming down from federal officials must remain ever more steadfast, refusing to negotiate over basic Constitutional principles. It means a steadfast commitment to the Judeo-Christian ethos which has been the foundation of Western Civilization and, under which, human rights flourished rather than adopting the neo-pagan ethos that has increasingly gripped the elite classes of the western world over the last few decades.
I have more sympathy than I often let on for the many people grasping at twigs, trying to figure out what has happened to us. While I struggle over missed details at times, I have always been solid on the big picture. My method is simply to focus on first things, fundamental principles, and analyze from how they apply and where they proceed. I have never seen as muddled a big picture as now. We live in revolutionary times, but almost all the revolutionary pressure comes from the upper layers of society rather than the lower. That is bizarre, because the top is always toppled in a revolution. One has to wonder if they are too dull-witted to know they have trapped themselves in a box canyon: if they succeed they will topple themselves and if they fail they will be toppled. I think they actually are that stupid…just willful, ignorant (if malevolent) children.
My friend, the eschatologist Desmond Birch, suggested that a major source of our disorder is bad philosophy. While I agree with him, I think it is worse than that. At the top levels of our society, there is no coherent, guiding philosophy. It is all situational bits and pieces, arbitrarily designed for the moment with no over-arching strategic goal. Oh yes, I know, they want globalism – but their tactics are not really suited to that goal – kind of like a fellow whose goal is to be a multi-millionaire, but whose only tactics are to buy a lot of lotto tickets.
I have been shocked over the last year to discover how many otherwise knowledgeable people are not knowledgeable at all, but mere technicians. Before you can begin to analyze how something is working, you must understand clearly the first principles behind it: what it is supposed to accomplish and why. I have long known that the general public AND public officials are very shaky at this politically. Over two decades ago I devoted a full day on my radio show to allow anyone to share their opinion on the electoral college, provided they would first give me an accurate short synopsis of why the founders adopted it in the first place. No one passed that hurdle. It seems people are much more eager to voice opinions than they are to first find out what they are talking about. (I did a short piece for the Illinois Review 13 years ago on the purpose of the electoral college.) That know-nothingism has now infected everything. We are technological wizards and philosophical gnats. After doing serious research, I tried hard the last year to find doctors and other medical personnel who could answer my questions and relieve my skepticism over the Covid “pandemic” and the experimental gene therapy jab that is glibly called a “vaccine.” I only found two doctors that could talk knowledgeably about the subject. Many were surprised at data I gave them and even more surprised when they checked and found it was accurate. Most had no idea of the actual underlying data and any interpretation of it. All they could say is that this is what the CDC and Facebook tell them to believe, so they just go with it. Frankly, it horrified me. If our professionals are mere technicians without foundational knowledge in their supposed area of expertise, no one is piloting this ship.
I do sympathize somewhat with those good-hearted souls who trust the establishment media and the pimple-faced oracles of truth at social media sites – because they grew up in a time when you largely could trust authoritative elites. But I don’t give them a complete pass. For the past five or six years, the establishment media has been wrong on most of the big stories they have done – and demonstrably so within months. At some point, if you keep citing outlets that are almost always wrong as your “authoritative” source, you bear responsibility for some of the gaslighting. It’s one thing to be a useful idiot, but quite another to be an eager and willing idiot.
I thought in 2008, when the establishment media abandoned its pretense of objectivity to become enthusiastic partisans for the left, that it would bear some very bad consequences for the media. No matter how the schemes of the left are polished up, they don’t work. Having tied itself to serial incompetents, I thought the media would see a crash in its credibility and have to start fresh. I never expected it to double down on error and become leading activists in the leftist pursuit of raw power. But it, like almost all other public institutions, has been thoroughly corrupted and politicized by the pagan left.
I look at what is unfolding across the world and am, like many of you, bewildered at how we could have sunk so low, so fast. In many ways, the revolution the pagan left has mounted resembles the French revolution of 1789. It is driven by enthused pseudo-intellectual drivel. It is malevolent, with advocates actively wishing for imprisonment or death for anyone who dissents. That sort of ignorant enthusiasm could be sufficient to take over a society, but it cannot sustain itself because it destroys the very hope of prosperity and peace – and the backlash comes quickly. In France, it led to Napoleon and his messianic dreams. The tactics being used are primarily from the Nazi playbook of the mid-1930’s, with a touch of Josef Stalin’s forced starvation in the Ukraine. Yet all the tactics seem disconnected and patchy. Yeah, I know the old canard about the first person to bring up Nazis in an argument loses. That was largely true two decades ago, even a decade ago: but before the death camps came the yellow stars, the dehumanization, the segregation of the population into the willing and the dissidents. We are NOT at the stage of death camps by any stretch of the imagination, but we look a LOT like Nazi Germany in the early days from 1933-35. That is not fabulism, but simple fact – and we are going to have to intervene hard and soon if we are to stop the trajectory.
A successful revolutionary acts in the environment of a genuinely repressive government, taking advantage of genuine discontent with the ruling class. He recruits substantial portions of the police and military to his cause, rather than insulting and alienating them. He depends on the absence of a genuine middle class to foment strife between the small number of haves and the much larger number of have-nots, inflaming the have-nots against the repression and systematic inequities in their society.
It seems to me that the pagan left is trying – and failing – to mimic the elements needed for a successful revolution, like a child who smears on her mother’s make-up. From one vantage point, I see the whole Covid fiasco of the last year and a half as a war on the American middle class, shutting down small businesses and deeply stressing the class in an effort to make it dependent on the government overlords while giving a pass to the giant corporations and recruiting them as woke allies – an effort to make the middle class into have-nots. The bizarre suppression of both the hydroxychloroquine/zinc therapy and ivermectin – which have almost 100% effectiveness while trying to force the experimental gene therapy jab on the general public even while many employees of the very institutes pushing the jab are refusing to get it themselves suggests a genuine conspiracy. The pagan left wanted a pandemic and did everything to stop effective therapies that would undermine their narrative. That is not fabulism, but fact. I am coming to suspect the stressors mounted by the manufactured “pandemic” were designed to mimic the economic stressors from the Weimar Republic, which opened the way for the Nazi takeover. That is informed analysis. Revolutions are most easily accomplished when there is a large, genuinely persecuted and oppressed class. That had not been the case in America for a good 70 years, until recently. It strikes me that the whole Critical Race Theory (CRT) nonsense and Black Lives Matter (BLM) agitation is an organized effort to create a simulacrum of such in order to fuel revolutionary fervor – but it is normal Americans, white folks and the middle class which are now being persecuted relentlessly (with a special viciousness reserved for those minority members who do NOT support the ugly narrative).
Historically, an easily identifiable ethnic minority in a society puts a premium on social unity unless they are genuinely trying to carve out a separate state. Whatever short term gains may be had by ethnic agitation, the long-term consequences to numerical minorities in such a scenario are horrific – and frequently lethal. This hits home in a very personal way for me as I have several close relatives who are ethnic minorities. Unless the angry folks who provide revolutionary fervor for the pagan left master class wake up to how maliciously that class is manipulating and exploiting them, it will end very badly for them – and for a lot of completely innocent people.
It is truly bizarre watching the chaotic efforts to sabotage such a formerly healthy, vigorous society. Pieces of the tactics are shrewd and insightful, yet jumbled together in a helter-skelter fashion that makes no sense. It is like watching a gifted but damaged adolescent try to overthrow his family in the midst of a psychotic break. Watching them try to govern is like watching a petulant, willful child batter a toy he doesn’t understand how to work. You know it is going to break; you just don’t know which blow will break it. Yeah, I’m mixing my similes – but that is what our whole society has increasingly been doing for almost two decades now.
People often ask me what I think the spark will be that sets off the global catastrophe. I usually respond that it doesn’t matter. So many fuses are lit and explosive issues are so closely spaced throughout the world that once one goes up, they will all go up nearly simultaneously. But I am hedging my bets on whether it will be domestic dysfunction or foreign dysfunction that will set it off first.
I have long said that I have little to no fears of China invading the U.S. It makes no geo-political sense and is contrary to millennia of ingrained ways of approaching diplomatic affairs in China. I know that honorable Chinese culture has been hijacked by the communists since 1949, but the leaders are still products of their cultural character. Finding that China is having serious internal turmoil and that many of its cherished diplomatic aspirations are crumbling, I am less sanguine about China mounting a strategic attack. When the Communist bullies who rule China don’t get their way, they use force and coercion. It is the only tactic they are familiar with to deal with failure and frustration. So, bullies are going to bully. People generally think that Washington or New York would be the prime targets of a hostile attack by a nation state. I rather think that in these times, hostile foreign states would steer clear of Washington and New York: those two centers are helping to perpetuate the chaos and havoc that paralyzes our national will. If I were China, my top two American targets would be San Diego and Houston. San Diego because it is the primary place from which America can project Naval power – and a surprising amount of air power, as well. Its loss would cripple American hard power. Houston is the center of much of America’s energy corridor AND is close to critical ports. Then I would take Taiwan while America is crippled and hope that I could muscle the rest of southeast Asia and Australia into submission with this fait accompli. If I were really devious (and the Chinese communists are) I would quietly collaborate with Jihadists to strike hard in western Europe simultaneously. And seeing how badly Americans over-react to a serious new virus that is still within the ordinary spectrum, I would release a new avian flu into the world – one that could have the makings of a real pandemic, not just an excuse for petty tyrants to bully people.
So yes, I think the American ruling class is the petulant child determined to break the toy (which is us) and the Chinese communists are bent on global domination. We sought to be woke but we will have war, at the very time American culture is crippled by a viral pagan outlook and is weaker than it has ever been. It is crumbling before our very eyes – and the crumbling will not remain gentle much longer. Those of us who value Christian truth and American traditions will constitute a lot of the collateral damage as the pagan left works to break us from within and the Chinese communists work to break us from without. We have now to choose actively to be a remnant. The migration of normal people from blue states to red states began seriously over a decade ago. Now those states which are serious about liberty and self-government must band together, that a kernel of freedom may be protected and nurtured even as the mad powers that be remain hellbent on toppling everything.
In the first reading at Catholic Mass on Trinity Sunday, Moses asks the Israelites, “…did any god venture to go and take a nation for Himself from the midst of another nation, by testings, by signs and wonders, by war, with strong hand and outstretched arm, and by great terrors, all of which the Lord your God, did for you in Egypt before your very eyes?” (Deuteronomy 4:34) I think history is about to repeat itself, if we are willing. While most of the western world, under the lead of the United States has adopted a pagan ethos, we are called once again to turn to the Lord. If we commit to being His people, keeping His commandments, He will be our God and lead us safely out of the desert western civilization and the government of the United States has become. He will make us, once again, into a great nation in His image. If, imitating St. Joan of Arc, we decisively fight the effort of pagans to capture our culture and eliminate freedom and opportunity, casting off the oppressor, we will, after 100 years of siege, make a place for America to grow again, under God, with liberty and justice for all. It is already a wild ride and is going to get wilder. Stay steady, stay focused, don’t jump at every rumor and provocation – and you will recruit many into the service of the Lord.
I am glad to report that things have been going well with our new donations portal at CORAC. I am confident we have resolved the problem. Thank you to all who have donated so far. Please, if you have not, help us prepare for the National Conference in three weeks and make up for the lost time over the last two months where malicious trolls largely kept us shut down.
Make sure to register for the conference and join us in the Black Hills of South Dakota at the end of the month. We have a great line-up of speakers, including David Daleiden, Desmond Birch, Chris Godfrey, Jim Graham – and will record a U.S. Grace Force Podcast with Fr. Richard Heilman and Doug Barry while we are there. There has been some confusion as some have said it is “pre-recorded.” I don’t know where that got started. It will be live at the conference as we record it – but will not be aired publicly until the next week. Attendees will be able to see it on monitors as it is recorded. There will be demonstrations and information available on health and wellness, sustainability, communications and prayer teams while we are gathered together.
I also have some volunteers calling our donors, getting their ideas and advice. This will be an ongoing practice. I want to get the best counsel from everyone, but especially those who have put their money where their mouth is. So if Eileen calls, be nice!