The Easy Chair: Talks & Round Table Discussions
Reconstruction Conference; Roman Tax Collectors and the Future; Incas; Prisoners of War; Conspiracies and Motivations; Norman McLeod; Slave Trade; Hollywood and Conspiracies; Peace Movement; Poetry
R.J. Rushdoony: 00:02 This is R.J. Rushdoony, Easy Chair Number 19, May 24, 1982. Well, it was good to see a number of you at Seattle, a week ago Saturday, at our Second Christian Reconstruction Conference. We had, by the way, an exceptionally good turn out with people attending from Florida to Alaska and we are most grateful to Clint and Elizabeth Miller for the high quality management and oversight of every detail in that conference. I’d like to add something to what Dr. Kelly said in his talks about the Roman tax collector. Now, some of you as you heard what kinds of torture the Roman tax collector indulged in, in trying to compel people to pay their taxes or trying to get more money out of them on the suspicious that some of their income had been hidden. It may have seemed to you that, of course, this was possible in ancient times but is not now. Well, disabuse yourself of that.
R.J. Rushdoony: 01:23 Rome began with more protection for its citizens than you and I have today. To be a Roman citizen was indeed a very important fact. Just reading the New Testament, the Book of Acts, and the treatment of Paul by Roman officials makes clear of the privilege, prestige and protection a Roman citizen had. But in a contest between the rights of citizens and the government’s hunger for taxes, the hunger of taxes always wins out. So, don’t be too sure you may not see something such as the Roman’s did. Now, another factor of some concern, the June 1982 Reader’s Digest illustrates a great deal what I said last time about the Indians. There is an article on the unsolved mysteries of the Incas by Ronald Schiller and the conclusion of this is a paragraph of two sentences which reads, and I quote, “With its God-King gone and the paralyzed empire disintegrated, it was a tragedy from which Peru has not yet recovered and an irreplaceable cultural loss to the world.” Quote-unquote.
R.J. Rushdoony: 03:03 Now, no socialist nation in the history of the world has ever been more ruthlessly and rigorous socialistic than ancient Peru. And yet, anthropologists bewail its passing. Now, this does not mean we have to approve of what Pizarro did. Pizarro was unique among the conquistadors in that he was a totally ungodly man. Well, not all of them were the most godly of men. We have to recognize that the conquistadors, by and large, were interested in God and his kingdom as well as gold so that we have had too much of one side of the conquistadors. They did a great deal of good. Moreover, they succeeded precisely because the regimes they overthrew in Mexico and Peru were so oppressive. Cortez had only a bare handful of men, as did Pizarro but in Mexico, with the human sacrifice and cannibalism and so on, all the subject people were on Cortez’s side. Anyone who fought against Montezuma and the Aztecs was their friend.
R.J. Rushdoony: 04:36 So, today, we romanticize those old cultures and we do not see their evils. For a more honest account of what the Incas of Peru were like, I’d like to suggest that you go to the library and get a book, which I am sure is out of print. It was published in 1961 by Van Nostrand. The author was Louis Baudin, B as in boy, A-U-D as in Denver, I-N. And the title, A Socialist Empire: The Incas of Peru. This was one of a series of exceptionally good books published by the William Volker fund at that time. As some of you know, I was with a Volker fund at the beginning of the 60s. Well, we are used to hearing that kind of talk today about the Incas and the ancient Aztecs, the Indians and others. Anthropologists are very prone to it. Everything is good except what we have today. Our western Christian culture, our free market economy, these are the things that are held forth as monsters.
R.J. Rushdoony: 06:03 It is interesting to me, by the way, that we frequently hear that the Bible has a monstrous concept of things because it requires the death penalty for adultery. Now, the family is the basic governmental unit in the Bible and hence treason in the Bible is not against the civil government but against the family and hence the death penalty. Ironically, the Incas did not have a family centered culture but they did have the death penalty for adultery. No one condemns it in the Incas. It’s cited as a virtue. But of course, ancient Israel, what monsters to have the death penalty for adultery. Now to pass on to another little item in the conservative manifesto for June 1982, written by Howard Phillips of Conservative Caucus. I found this item grim and adventurous and I quote, “En route to New York I had the good fortune to be seated next to Congressman John Leboutillier, who chatted with me about reports that between 50 and 200 U.S. prisoners of war may still be alive in Communist Laos. Some believe that President Reagan is now considering three options with respect to these P.O.W.’s.”
R.J. Rushdoony: 07:41 “A, ignore them. B, steal them back or C, buy them back. Informed sources suggest that the most serious consideration is being given to the option of buying them back along the lines of the $2 billion plus reparations offer made by Henry Kissinger during the early 1970s.” Now to a couple of books. One, not too recent and the other very recent. Just published very recently, 1981 but late in 1981 is Carroll Quigley’s book, Q-U-I-G-L-E-Y, the Anglo-American Establishment: From Rhodes to Clivedon, $20 from Books in Focus and Books in Focus can be reached at P.O. Box 3481, Grand Central Station, New York, New York, 10163. Now, Quigley’s earlier book, of course, created quite a bit of attention, Tragedy and Hope: A History of the World In Our Time dealt with what many people regarded as the conspiracies of our day. Now let me add that Quigley says he agrees with this Anglo-American establishment but he disagrees with their methodology.
R.J. Rushdoony: 09:26 Quigley, by the way, passed away a few years ago in 1977. Now, to get back to Tragedy and Hope very briefly, many people read the book from cover to cover because here ostensibly was the story of the great conspiracy of our time. Well, the trouble with that kind of approach is this, a conspiracy is a plan by a group of people who believe in something. Now, when you call it a conspiracy, you lose common sense, I’m afraid too often on the subject. I don’t say this is always the case but too often people then say, “They’re the bad guys. We’re the good guys and that’s it.” Now, the fallacy there is that what we are, whether we are Christians or conservatives or political activists, we are regularly presented by the opposition as a conspiracy. Such thinking is fruitless. It is dead end thinking. The important fact is this, what motivates them? Now, how can men get a different motivation? To return to something I’ve said often in many of my recorded talks, man is not a political animal, he is not a rational animal. He is a religious creature made in the image of God.
R.J. Rushdoony: 11:07 And because man is a religious creature, his thinking is essentially religious. And so, what we have to say about these groups, these ostensible conspiracies is that they manifest a religious fervor for a particular cause, for a particular concern. Now, we have to recognize that religious passion then we have to know what is wrong with that faith and we have to have a faith that can overtake, undercut and replace that faith. Until we do, we are working foolishly. Now, I believe this book, the Anglo-American Establishment, is an excellent supplement to Tragedy and Hope. In fact, when the two are put together, both have more credibility. Now, what I’m gonna deal with in Quigley’s book is not Quigley’s emphasis but I think it is the heart of the matter. It deal, of course, in this book, with the men rather than the movements, as in Tragedy and Hope. He begins with Cecil Rhodes’ will that a council or a group be set up to remake the world. The hope of the world as he sought was an Anglo-American Establishment which would work to change the world, to conform the world to the dreams of these men.
R.J. Rushdoony: 12:54 Their position was modern liberalism. Some had nominal church affiliations but perhaps the only real conviction among any of them as far as an official religious group is concerned was Christian Science. Their basis premise was that the world needed direction and they were going to provide it. “Moreover, these people were neo-imperialists,” Quigley says, “who justified the British Empire’s existence on moral rather than on economic or political grounds and who sough to make this justification a reality by advocating self-government and federation within the Empire.” Unquote. So, we have here something of a statement of their principle and as Quigley says, “Their roots were to found in ancient Athens rather than in modern Manchester.” That is, in Greek culture and philosophy of ancient Paganism rather than the free market of modern Manchester. We can add to that in anything except a systematic and biblical faith. Moreover, their premises as dyed in the wool liberals was that the world would be happiest if their goals were attained.
R.J. Rushdoony: 14:41 For example, Lord Escher, on February 18, 1919, wrote in a letter to another, and I quote, “I fervently believe that the happiness and the welfare of the human race is more closely concerned in the evolution of English democracy and of our Imperial Commonwealth than in the growth of any international league.” Unquote. So, they were true, blue liberal who were going to save the world from itself. They had, of course, very serious inner weakness. They were very wealthy and powerful men. Their wealth was largely inherited. They were, as time passed on to the third generation, men who got everything, as Quigley says, “Too easily.” And instead of the earlier confidence, they were haunted by the need to act quickly to avoid impending disaster. So that instead of confidence, as time went on, their own policies were backfiring and causing them nothing but grief.
R.J. Rushdoony: 16:09 Quigley says that these men had one grave weakness that may prove fatal and I quote, “Skilled as they were in personal and political relations, endowed with fortune, education and family connections, they were all fantastically ignorant of economics. Even those like Brand or Hitchens, who were regarded within the group as its experts on this subject.” Unquote. So, they had a very serious weakness, ignorance of economics. We could add an ignorance of Christianity and an ignorance of people outside their own circle. They patterned their operation, by the way, on the Jesuit order. Not very successfully but that was their goal. Towards creating their world order, they were going to eliminate rivals in Continental Europe hence France had to be smashed because France was the great power on the continent.
R.J. Rushdoony: 17:20 Hitler was therefore encouraged. Everything done to break France and when France was broken, Hitler was to turned loose against the Soviet Empire. But things had gone too far, they had succeeded too well in persuading the British people of the necessity for war. And so after the phony war era following the fall of France inactivity, they had to attack Germany. The people were no longer ready to go along with their plans in England. They were anti-Nazi to the core. Well, the great enemy, of course, is just referred to in a passing in Quigley’s book, “These men were working to change the world.” Although Quigley does not say they were trying to change it away from Christianity to a liberal, humanistic, socialistic faith and he does say they were socialistic. What they were trying to change it away from was a biblical order and Quigley says that a good deal of their effort was eliminate, and I quote, “A darkness of theocratic law.” Unquote. There you have it, very, very well put.
R.J. Rushdoony: 19:05 This is an important book. “Now,” as Quigley says, “the world represents the shambles they made of it. They’re bankrupt.” What strength they have now is in this country, in Washington and New York and they are in the process of making a shambles of this area of their activity. That’s my conclusion, not Quigley. Now, I said there was another book along the same lines, The American Establishment by Leonard Silk and Mark Silk, published by Basic Books in New York in 1980. I do not know the price of it but this again is by a pair of men who are liberals. Leonard Silk is a writer or was at least when he wrote the book for the New York Times and Mark Silk is associated with Harvard. The doctrine of man that appears in this book just barely referred to in passing is again the same as that shared by The Anglo-American Establishment, which this book also deals with, liberalism.
R.J. Rushdoony: 20:40 The Council on Foreign Relations is given more than a little treatment by the Silks, who incidentally have no objection to the establishment, no principled fundamental objection. First, the Council on Foreign Relations believes in a neutrality, an objectivity and, of course, as Cornelius Van Til has so powerfully demonstrated in our time, in this century, the idea of neutrality is an impossibility. Man cannot be neutral. Our thinking is always from a perspective. Now, we can be honest speaking from that perspective. We can truthful but we cannot be objective. We cannot be neutral. Then, second, elitism. This marks, also as Quigley says, the Anglo-American establishment. Human rights is the great concern of the establishment but not democracy. They use the term but they want an elite group from the top down to govern so that elitism is essential to the establishment. They are for better race relations, for more human rights, for economic democracy and so on and so forth but all this is to accomplished by the philosopher kings. Their pattern, as Quigley said, is Athens.
R.J. Rushdoony: 22:31 As a result, we cannot understand the world around us unless we see the religious roots, we recognize that this is Greek religious faith again active in our time waging war on biblical faith. Well, so much for that, I’d like to turn to something very, very different. I wish Douglas Kelly were giving this part of it because he is much more familiar with the man about whom I’m to speak now. When Douglas and I were at a used book store I encountered a book which immediately appealed to me and he, of course, told me he knew a great deal about the man. He came from an area of Scotland that had a great deal of the coloration of the Isle of Skye, which is where Douglas Kelly’s family came from in 1802 to the Carolinas. Now, the Isle of Skye represented old fashioned Calvinism at its most rigorous aspect. All the areas on the mainland effected by Skye, not only had the same rigorous Calvinism but were hostile to the Stewarts, no part of them. They did not send men to the Stewart cause.
R.J. Rushdoony: 24:14 Well, this book was published in London in 1952 by Neil Robinson. The title is Lion of Scotland, being an account of Norman McLeod’s 40 year search for a land where he and his followers could live as they wished, of the voyage in 1817 from the Western Highlands to Nova Scotia to Australia in the 1850s and finally to New Zealand and how they built a community for themselves. Norman McLeod, spelled capital M-C, capital, L-E-O-D, was a tall, straight and proud man. He was in the pattern of the old clan chiefs. The day of the clan had just ended not too long before. Bannockburn, Culladen, those milestones in the death of the old Scotland had come and gone but the same characters still remained. As a result, McLeod ruled the people who were under him with an iron hand. “Even after his death,” the author said, “he could still rouse an almost fanatical devotion or an equally positive dislike.” He was hated and admired with intensity. He had a strong will.
R.J. Rushdoony: 26:17 One man who paid a tribute to him but regarded himself as unfriendly said, and I quote, “He was a big man, a leonine countenance, a giant mentally and physically. He ought to have been a cardinal or a pope, for in that position he would shine, while with us he was lost. I have heard him in church castigating one of his parishioners at a dreadful rate for a trivial offense of which we thought little. Yet this man was one of this special friends. Next day, we visited him at this hospitable home and while sitting around the table, he was full of youthful talk, simple and sweet as a child. He played the part of a father to the whole community and like a good father he bore no malice to anyone who came under his lash. If anyone attempted to dictate to him, he flung defiance in his face. If they assumed airs of superiority, quickly leveled them. He always preached man’s innate dignity, which neither riches nor learning could add to nor labor, poverty or weakness degrade.”
R.J. Rushdoony: 27:25 “He taught all men to trust each other as brother. He, himself, would help anyone in their most menial tasks and he never assumed any airs or sought any reward.” Unquote. Well, this man in his early 20s became a Christian and very quickly entered the ministry, decided that Scotland lacked religious freedom, which it was true, and took his flock from the Western Highlands to Nova Scotia. They built the boat themselves. They took the boat apart, made a church out of it. In time, a McLeod decided Nova Scotia was not the place so they took the church apart, rebuilt the boat, went to Australia and when he decided Australia was not the proper place, they went to an area of New Zealand where they could be a community unto themselves and to this day still speaking Gaelic. And there they settled. Remarkable man at a remarkable company of people. They had a code and an ethic that isn’t out of our time.
R.J. Rushdoony: 28:50 Interesting story about his son-in-law, also a Scot who had failed as a ship’s officer to New Zealand and decided he wanted to stay there and he deserted ship but his sense of duty was such he never told his family that he was alive. It was better for them to think that he had been killed somehow while on leave in New Zealand. In fact, we read, “One day Captain Anderson, going about his work was hailed by a voice that he had not heard for many years. He looked over and saw his brother. ‘Why didn’t you tell us you were still alive, Hugh? We had all given you up for dead.’ Hugh Anderson justified himself in the grand of manner, ‘I preferred you to think I was dead,’ he replied, ‘rather than to know that I had deserted my ship.'” Unquote. And the stories are interesting too in that the old thrift marked all of them. In fact, on one occasion, one of the men of the group took ship to Auckland, and I quote, “While on holiday in Auckland, the old man died suddenly. He was, of course, to be buried in [Wipoo 00:30:22].”
R.J. Rushdoony: 30:23 “And one of his friends set out by steamer to carry through the sad but necessary task of bringing him back. The coffin was made in the melancholy freight deposited in the steamer’s hold along with the rest of the cargo. On arrival at Wipoo, it’s guardian was politely told what the transport charges for the coffin were. He looked at the captain with an air of guarded triumph. ‘That maybe so,’ he said, ‘but I think it is not necessary. When I was looking through my poor friend’s possessions, I found that he had bought a return ticket.'” Unquote. Well, the book is a delight. These men were men after the old school and remarkable breed of men. The colony is still there and still very strong and Norman McLeod is very much remembered. This is the kind of man that once was common place everywhere and is now far less in evidence. Well, a few quick notes from other books.
R.J. Rushdoony: 31:53 Immanuel Velikovsky has a new book out, the late Immanuel Velikovsky. Mankind in Amnesia, published in 1982 by Doubleday and Company, Garden City, New York for 14.95. I don’t agree with the book. I don’t particular care for it but there were some interesting bits of information in the book. Now, his thesis is that there were tremendous catastrophes in the early history of mankind but that mankind, and he is a Freudian, Velikovsky is, suppresses unpleasant memories. And so, the catastrophes described in worlds in collision are suppressed by man and man refuses to know anything that is unpleasant. But in the process he has some interesting things to say about his thesis. He calls attention to the slave traders and the slaves and the fact that the slave trade was essentially a Muslim enterprise, that the part of Western Europeans and Americans in the slave trade was relatively minor compared to the Arab part therein.
R.J. Rushdoony: 33:38 He goes on to say that no culture has ever exploited Blacks and relied on slavery as much as Islam, that until quite recently, black slaves were bought and sold in Arabian markets. The traders, until recently and possible still, would go into the eastern coast of Africa, as well as much earlier the western, posing as Muslim missionaries and they would invite the faithful to go on pilgrimages to Mecca. When they arrived in Mecca, they were sold. This was a routine thing documented by many, many books. Now, he goes on to say, and I quote, “A characteristic social and psychological phenomenon is taking place in the process of the black reawakening in the United States. The fourth to 10th generation descendants of slaves, in a case of the West Indies only the third generation, feel a resurgence of the longing for Africa that accompanied the fettered slaves on their forced journey to this country and haunted the thoughts of the first generation of those working on plantations or on mines. But together with his back to Africa sentiment, a strange even pathological phenomenon takes place.”
R.J. Rushdoony: 35:21 “The most militant among the American Blacks looks to the Arabs as their allies and mentors. The descendants of the slaves return to those who prayed on them, took them captive, chained them, drove them mercilessly across deserts, let me die from thirst exhausted at oars on galleys. The urge to return to the tormentor or to his descendants to adopt their religion and to hail them as saviors is a reaction for which psychology knows the cause. A victim’s children remain fascinated by the one who wielded a whip over their father.” Unquote. An interesting observation. Then in Benjamin Stein’s book of a few years ago, Dreemz, D-R-E-E-M-Z, about Hollywood, published by Harper and Rowan 1978. I think it’s only available now if it still is in paperback. One of the things he brings out very revealingly in this book is the conspiracy mentality in the film and television establishment.
R.J. Rushdoony: 36:46 And he comments, by the way, also on his teaching at UCLA and he said, “Compared to the bureaucracy at UCLA, the federal bureaucracy is like grease lightning.” Very telling observation. Few people every bother to complain about their state universities, all of which because they are not the focus of public attention in their operation, only in what the students do, have become the most idiotic bureaucracies in the modern world. But, at any rate, what he found wherever he went was that the film establishment believes in conspiracies and that the CIA is all around them and all over the world. He said, “There is something in the air here which encourages what I would call bizarre explanations for everything as well as bizarre attempts to find solutions. At the studio where I work, all major and national and international events are explained as manifestations of the CIA conspiracy. At a party, a woman introduced me to a man and said, ‘Roger’s the one who first explained to me about the CIA and the multinationals. I hadn’t understood about them at all before now.'”
R.J. Rushdoony: 38:20 “The discouraging thing is that I have started to believe in the CIA as villain too. A few days ago, someone mentioned meaningfully to me a rumor that Richard Helms, a long time director of the CIA had begun his career in 1936 as a reporter in Germany. This piece of data made sense only as evidence of his deep complicity in the CIA multinational’s Nazi plotting, which people believe in absolutely. The belief is so pervasive, so completely certain, that is easier to roll with the punch and simply start believing in CIA plots too. Plus, it passes the time.” He says much more on that. Wherever he turns, everybody is dreaming about the conspiracy, the CIA as the champion of the right and so on. On another occasion, he says because he had once worked for the Nixon administration, “One woman started to bait me about Nixon as she usually does. The time has long since passed when I will argue with her about it. Still she continued to bait me.”
R.J. Rushdoony: 39:40 “‘I want him to die, Ben,’ she said, ‘I want him dead.’ That sounded extreme. Still, I did not argue with her. Talk turned to the state of the world. Everyone at the table except me believes and knows as a certainty that a conspiracy of old Nazis and new conglomerates rules the world. ‘The eight families,’ one man said knowingly, ‘the eight families.’ When I told them they were dreaming, they looked at me as if I had exposed myself. ‘Just wait,’ they said, ‘just wait.’ They finished their meal with great gusto and then asked me how much the Rockefellers had paid me not to expose the conspiracy.” Unquote. Well, that’s what happens when you concentrate on the manifestation, caught a conspiracy and don’t get to the underlying religious motivation. You may recall that some time back in one of the earlier easy chairs, I discussed at length a lot of Vladimir Bukovsky’s book, To Build a Castle: My Life as a Dissenter. The Commentary magazine for May 1982, which is obtainable for, let me see if I can find a price here, $2.75, from Commentary, 165 East 56th Street, New York, NY, 10022.
R.J. Rushdoony: 41:29 That’s the May issue of Commentary. Well, Bukovsky has a never important article on the peace movement and the Soviet Union. All over the world, we have the anti-nuclear protesters and, as Bukovsky points out and others have done, the peace movement is Marxist inspired. In fact, he goes back to World War One and calls attention to the extent to which in World War One the socialists were agitating for peace and the devastation that it wrought as a result for old Russia. He cites Lenin, and I quote, “As an ultimate objective, peace simply means communist world control.” Unquote. He develops the Marxist implications of the present peace movement, gives us a great deal of historical data. Incidentally, he tells us how the French Communists in the early stages of World War Two were working with the Nazis and how Tito got into the battle against Nazis very late, that for some time Nazis and Communists continued some element of coordination.
R.J. Rushdoony: 43:17 Well, he comments. There’s so much here I don’t know where to begin but let me quote this, “The purpose of all this peace pandemonium was well calculated in the Kremlin. First, the threat of nuclear war of which the Soviets periodically a reminder by fomenting an international crisis combined with a scope of the peace movement should both frighten the bourgeois and make it more attractable. Second, the recent Soviet subjugation of central European countries should be accepted with more serenity by western pubic opinion and quickly forgotten. Third, the movement should help to stir up anti-American sentiment among the Europeans along with a mistrust of their own governments, thus moving the political spectrum to the left. Fourth, it should make military expenditures and the placement of strategic nuclear weapons so unpopular, so politically embarrassing that in the end the process of strengthening western defenses would be considerably slowed, giving the Soviets crucial time to catch up.”
R.J. Rushdoony: 44:26 “This is a description of what they did in the ’50s. Fifth, since the odd mixture of fools and naves described above is usually drawn from the most socially active element in the population. It’s activism should be given the right direction. The results were to exceed all expectations. Soviet money had clearly been well spent.” Unquote. Again, let me quote this, “Indeed the most amazing aspect of the present anti-war hysteria, aside from the fact that it has arisen at a time so remarkably favorable for Moscow, is the direction of the campaign. Millions of people in Great Britain, Germany, Holland, Belgium, France and Italy, supposedly of sound mind and with no evidence of the influence of LSD, march about claiming that the threat of war comes from their own governments and the government of the U.S.A. A psychoanalyst might characterize this behavior as the Freudian replacement of a real object of fear within an imaginary one except that even a psychoanalyst might conclude that pro-Soviet propaganda had something to do with the delusion in this particular case. The facts are too obvious to discuss here.” Unquote.
R.J. Rushdoony: 45:54 One might add that we had this problem very early in our history. In Washington’s day, it was actually proposed that the U.S. army be limited, I think, by Constitution or an amendment or something, to 5,000 men or 3,000 men and Washington was asked his opinion of it. And he said, “Very good, provided you can limit any invader to the same number of men.” The logic of Washington has not yet been met. Again, to quote from Bukovsky, “More seriously, our peace lovers repeating word for word an old Pravda cliché, maintain that the crazy American generals are so trigger happy as to push the button just for the fun of it. I have never been able to understand why generals must invariably be crazy American generals, of course, not the Soviet kind, who seem to have some innate immunity from craziness. And if they are crazy, why did they not push the damn button long ago? In any case, it is hard to imagine that the generals, who at least have some technical education, are less equipped to understand nuclear problems than the primary school teachers who are so heavily represented in the peace movement?” Unquote.
R.J. Rushdoony: 47:30 Well, that I think is excellently put. How they can imagine our generals are going to be trigger happy and push buttons just for the fun of it, I don’t know. With all the bureaucracy over the generals and all the committees exercising oversight and all the civilian control, I marvel at the patience of any man in the military for putting up with this kind of thing. It takes a great deal of dedication. Well, he goes on and on to describe the idiocy and I like this story in particular. “I remember in the ’50s, when the previous peace campaign was still in full swing, there was a popular joke which people in the Soviet Union whispered to each other. A jew came to his rabbi and asked, ‘Rabbi, you are a very wise man. Tell me, is there going to be a war?’ ‘There will be no war,’ replied the rabbi, ‘but there will be such a struggle for peace that no stone will be left standing.'” Unquote. Bukovsky calls attention to the fact that Lenin coined a term for the kind of people they make use of in the West, a useful idiot.
R.J. Rushdoony: 49:02 This is an interesting point too. “The Soviet rulers are totally a cynical lot, much more preoccupied with their own privileges and pleasure than with Marxist ideas. They probably hate Communist dogma more than any western capitalist. Moreover, the majority of the Soviet people are as cynical as their leaders. There are many more sincere Communists to be found in the West than in the U.S.S.R.” Unquote. Well, there’s much more but I recommend that you get and read this article. “The issue,” he says, “is not peace versus war but freedom versus slavery and don’t you forget it.” Now, I’d like to share with you a little bit of poetry from a very minor poet, totally forgotten in our time. A great deal of his poetry is not of interest today. He was a man who died, I believe, at the age of 21. Born in 1785, his father was a butcher. His mother came from a slightly higher social level. In his brief life, Henry Kirk White, very much influenced by John Milton, produced a great deal of poetry.
R.J. Rushdoony: 50:40 Most of it is now not worth reading but periodically White comes out with singing lines that are equal to the best of Milton. This, in particular, is my favorite. How insignificant is man, bound to the hasty opinions of an hour, how poor, how trivial in the vast conceit of infinite duration, a boundless space. God of the universe, Almighty One, thou who dost walk upon the winged winds are with a storm, thy rugged charioteer, swift and impetuous as the northern blast ridest from pole to pole. Thou who dost hold the forked lightning in thine awful grasp and reignest in the earthquake, when thy wrath goes down toward erring man. I would address to thee my parting pion. For of thee great beyond comprehension, who thyself art time and space sublime infinitude of thee has been my song. With awe, I kneel trembling before the footstool of thy state. My God, my father, I will sing to thee a hymn of laud, a solemn canticle. Er on the Cyprus wreath, which overshades the throne of death, I hang my mournful lyre and give its wild strings to the desert gale. Rise, son of Satham, rise and join the strains.
R.J. Rushdoony: 52:19 Sweep an accordant tones, thy tuneful harp and leaving vain laments, arouse thy soul to exaltation. Sing hosanna, sing and hallelujah for the Lord if great and full of mercy. Magnificent, I think. Then to glance at some other minor poets but very real poets. Charles Kingsley is better known for his books, especially Westward Ho, which when I was a boy was read in school and was a delight. This poem indicates that he was capable of genuine poetry. Oh, that we too were maying down the stream of the soft, spring breeze like children with violets playing, in the shade of the whispering trees. Oh, that we too sat dreaming on the sward of some sheep, trimmed down, watching the white mists steaming over river and mead and town. Oh, that we too lay sleeping in our nest in the churchyard sod, with our limbs at rest and the quiet earth’s breast and our souls at home with God.
R.J. Rushdoony: 53:49 That poem was in the spirit of Gray’s Elegy. There was a time when churchyard poetry was very popular in England but now another from an English poet, William Allingham. Memory of childhood, half waking, I thought it was the little bed in slept in long ago. A straight white curtain at the head and two smooth knobs below. I thought I saw the nursery fire and in a chair well known my mother sat and did not tire of reading all alone. If I should make the slightest sound to show that I am awake, she’d rise and laugh at the blankets around my pillows softly shake, kiss me and turn my face to see the shadows on the wall and then sing Russo’s Dream to me till fast asleep I fall. But this is not my little bed. That time is far away. Among strangers cold I’d live instead, from dreary day to day. There was much of beauty in some of the old nursery rhymes too. I like this one, which doesn’t say anything of meaning that I can grasp but yet it does. It suggests something.
R.J. Rushdoony: 55:34 How many miles to Babylon, three scores in ten? And I get there by candlelight, yes, and back again. Well, it’s been good to be with you again. I’ll look forward to our next visit, two weeks from now. It’s Spring and the air is good and lush and restful and perhaps you can hear out bantam roosters crowing in the background. It’s a sound I love. So, I hope the tape picked it up. It’s a good sound. It’s a good world. God rules and so we can rejoice. We can fight to victory because greater is he that is with us than he that is in the world. If God be for us, who can be against us? Thank you and God bless you.
Learn more about R.J. Rushdoony by visiting: https://chalcedon.edu/founder