Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Father Coughlin was a Leftist

A little bit of American history you won't read in your history textbooks

As the Great Depression dragged toward the end of its first decade in 1938, Father Charles Coughlin released the latest issue of his newspaper Social Justice. It reprinted that most notorious and persistent of anti-Semitic tracts, The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion.

Coughlin's decision to disseminate the spurious conspiracy tale to his millions of followers was not just the same old Jew-hatred, even if part of his financing came from Henry Ford. It marked Coughlin's transformation from an ardent New Dealer, who had coined the phrase "Roosevelt or Ruin," to a divisive demagogue.

The through-line from Coughlin the social democrat to Coughlin the biased provocateur was populism. The same ideology that had led him earlier in his public career to attack corporate power and unmediated capitalism, to champion labor unions and activist government, also enabled him to search for a scapegoat.


The above was written by a modern-day Leftist and so pretends that antisemitism was a departure from the Leftist "New Deal" ideas of FDR but we see quite to the contrary here.



Readers of EDUCATION WATCH should get a pleasant surprise now that Mike Pechar is also posting there. His style is notably lighter than mine.

Astounding: A major Australian bank is offering university scholarships to students who want to study "the development of Shariah compliant financial products and services". The scholarship is called the "Sheikh Fehmi El-Imam Scholarship". Sharia law of course forbids the charging of interest. I would like to see how long the bank lasts if it adopts that principle!

The thug behind Kwanzaa: "Each year, with the onset of Christmas, we are treated to another gauzy, fluff piece about how great Kwanzaa is by yet another PC spewing newspaper columnist. This year, among many others, the Houston Chronicle gets in the act with a piece by Leslie Casimir titled "Learning about Kwanzaa from the holiday's creator." This one, though, is a bit off the usual track of the how-great-Kwanzaa-is theme because this particular piece celebrates the inventor of the faux holiday, Maulana Karenga, himself. So, we've gone from merely celebrating this manufactured holiday to making a hero of the rapist, race monger and a violent thug who created it! Karenga, as it happens, has a long criminal record, indeed. In 1971 Everett served time in jail for assault. By then Everett had changed his name to Maulana Ron Karenga and began to affect a pseudo African costume and act the part of a native African. It wasn't mere assault he was convicted of, either. It was sexual assault and torture perpetrated against some of his female followers. The L.A. Times then reported that he placed a hot soldering iron in one woman's mouth and used a vise to crush another's toe.... Happy Kwanzaa, indeed!

Arrogant labor unions lose: "After nearly a four-year delay, a Florida worker has prompted an administrative law judge of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) to strike down a nationwide policy of a major international union that requires employees to object annually to prevent union officials from spending their compulsory union dues for political activities. The policy is a pervasive tactic used by union officials to prevent dissenting employees from reclaiming forced union dues used to promote political causes they oppose."

`Political art' that treats the public like mugs: "An art installation in New York featuring fake criminal mugshots of Bush and Cheney is meant to be cutting edge. In fact it is cynically conformist.... The supposedly controversial, polemical and outrageous Line Up exhibit has been branded `political attack art'. Yet what is striking is just how ordinary and simple the prints are. The New York Public Library describes Multiple Interpretations as showcasing prints by `some of the most intriguing and compelling artists active today'. Yet as David Durant points out on his `Heretical Librarian' blog: `Wow, if this kind of infantile, dishonest agitprop is what "the most intriguing and compelling artists active today" are doing, then I'd really hate to see what the crappy and unimaginative artists are up to.'"

Olmert government stupidity: "Palestinian militants, freed in past prisoner releases by Israel, were responsible for at least 30 terror attacks which claimed the ives of 177 Israelis, according to a study published yesterday by Almagor, an organization representing the victims of Palestinian terrorism. The report's publication came in response to yesterday's release of 429 Palestinians jailed in Israeli prisons. According to the report, 6,912 militants were released between the years 1993 and 1999, and nearly 80 percent of them returned to terrorist activity."

On Wal-Mart et al. in the recent Northwestern deluge: "In cases of extreme weather and natural disasters, some of the nation's largest retailers now behave like municipalities -- sometimes better. Retailers have created specialized divisions -- or hired outside firms -- to gird for emergencies. The goal: to speed recovery for customers, employees and ultimately sales. No one is clear how many retailers operate internal emergency units, but the practice is now standard among the biggest players, including Target Corp. and Lowe's Cos. Inc. This past week, Wal-Mart donated a 40-foot tanker of potable water to Vernonia, [Oregon,] while up north Home Depot opened its still-waterlogged Chehalis store for the town's Chamber of Commerce to pick up face masks and cleaning supplies free of charge. Such coordination became clear during Hurricane Katrina in 2005, when local governments praised initial responses from retailers as more expedient than those of the Federal Emergency Management Agency."

What would Adam Smith say? "The role of government in the United States and other western democracies has expanded dramatically over the last century. Compared to its pre-twentieth century functions, government has taken on new and vast roles, including old-age pensions, government-provided health care, and a host of other programs that typically comprise a modern welfare state. What would Adam Smith, the eighteenth-century Scottish moral philosopher, say about the expanded role of our modern government? For Smith, the ideal functions of government were few and well defined."


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"Why should the German be interested in the liberation of the Jew, if the Jew is not interested in the liberation of the German?... We recognize in Judaism, therefore, a general anti-social element of the present time... In the final analysis, the emancipation of the Jews is the emancipation of mankind from Judaism.... Indeed, in North America, the practical domination of Judaism over the Christian world has achieved as its unambiguous and normal expression that the preaching of the Gospel itself and the Christian ministry have become articles of trade... Money is the jealous god of Israel, in face of which no other god may exist". Who said that? Hitler? No. It was Karl Marx. See also here and here and here.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch) and the full name of Hitler's political party (translated) was "The National Socialist German Workers' Party".


1 comment:

kipwatson said...

I don't know much about Arab banking systems, but I have heard some people discuss them with great respect.

They forbid Usury -- a good thing in my book (although unlike the Arabs I would define that term to exclude reasonable interest and only proscribe unreasonable interest levied against the powerless, which is how the term is used in the West).

As I understand it they allow the charging of a fee for a loan (ie. no variable rates), or they set up a situation where the bank buys a house (for example) and sells it to the 'borrower' by installments. All of which protects the borrower, especially the small borrower, or so I am led to believe.

I don't know any details, but I have no doubt there is something we could learn from the Arabs, as with so many things related to this long-suffering and downtrodden; but philosophical and noble people. They are exemplary in their treatment of the poor and powerless (within the limits of their underdeveloped societies), without the social breakdown that Western welfare systems have produced.

Although of course there is more they could learn from us, particularly (for example as regards the banking system) in terms of efficiency and adaptability.

But I certainly wouldn't automatically dismiss all things Arab and Islamic with unexamined scorn. That childish attitude is rather beneath an intelligent, self-professed free thinker like yourself, isn't it? The Arabs have a great tradition of natural justice that very often resonates with the British or those with a love of Anglo Saxon justice generally -- hence so many English 'Arabists'.