The 'GIVE' Act Calls for Your Kids to be 'Owned' by the State

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should be owned, as soldiers are by the army, and our pride would
rise accordingly."
~ William James, The
Moral Equivalent of War

The quote above
is taken from an essay that The Corporation for National and Community
Service ( takes as one of its founding documents.
What is the CNCS you may ask? We'll be getting to that. First let's
take a gander at the latest statist scribblings to come forth from
the horde in Congress, the GIVE Act H.R.1388:


SEC. 120.

ENGAGEMENT ZONE — The term youth engagement zone means the area
in which a youth engagement zone program is carried out.

ENGAGEMENT ZONE PROGRAM — The term youth engagement zone program
means a service learning program in which members of an eligible
partnership described in paragraph (4) collaborate to provide
coordinated school-based or community-based service learning
opportunities, to address a specific community challenge, for
an increasing percentage of out-of-school youth and secondary
school students served by local educational agencies where —

(A) not
less than 90 percent of the students participate in service-learning
activities as part of the program; or

(B) service-learning
is a mandatory part of the curriculum in all of the secondary
schools served by the local educational agency.

There is much
more in statist scribbling, but the first question that should come
to the mind of any thinking parent is, "What exactly is service-learning,
and why should it be mandatory in public-statist schools?"

At the National
Service Learning Clearinghouse website at,
you can read the glossy euphemistic "What is Service Learning?"
page for its glorious "Guiding Principles" and its exalted
"Vision of the Organization." Or, you can dig deeper.
Dig deeper, why don't you? After all, this is about the souls of
your children. National Service Learning Clearinghouse is simply
one of many operative appendages of The Corporation for National
and Community Service. Finding its founding principles would divulge
much more than the NSLC's bulleted list of glossy euphemisms.

"The mission
of the Corporation for National and Community Service is to improve
lives, strengthen communities, and foster civic engagement through
service and volunteering." That's pretty, yes? But more importantly,
look at the National Service Timeline page to begin to get into
the genetics of the matter:

Service Timeline

Read about
the history of national service — from the creation of the Civilian
Conservation Corps in 1933 to the launch of the President's Volunteer
Service Award in 2003. This timeline provides a quick glance at
key dates and milestones during the past century.

The Cooperative Education Movement is founded at the University
of Cincinnati.

Circa 1905
American philosophers William James and John Dewey develop intellectual
foundations for service-based learning.

American philosopher William James envisions non-military national
service in his essay “The Moral Equivalent War”

"The Moral
Equivalent of War” essay is an allegedly monumental ditty, and a
founding building block for the concept of "service learning,"
as it is embodied in today's NCSC and the GIVE Act. As a matter
of fact, the NCSC cheerfully lists the GIVE Act as one of their
legislative achievements right on their home page. In other places,
the essay is claimed to be "based on a speech delivered at
Stanford University in 1906, is the origin of the idea of organized
national service. The line of descent runs directly from this address
to the depression-era Civilian Conservation Corps to the Peace Corps,
VISTA, and AmeriCorps." AmeriCorps is what the GIVE Act seeks
to enlarge and further empower.

So what of
William James and his mighty essay? Like all else Mr. James gave
birth to with his cumbrous brain, it is quite pointy headed and
longwinded. It can be read in full by the interested at
But here's the gist of it for the less than interested; "War
is hideous and must come to an end some day. But we can't be wimps
about it, because the brutes among us insist it is an essential
part of being a true man. War is hideous in all but one respect.
It is really good at kicking the childishness out of people. It
is really good for organizing and centralizing. I think we need
to create pseudo-wars where people don't die, so we can use this
positive element of war to help us centralize power in the hands
of the unbrutish, like myself, for the good of all mankind."
That really is about it. This rather juvenile concept is more fully
documented in such books as Johan Goldberg's Liberal Fascism.

We are full
to the gills with these pseudo-wars in this liberal-socialist American
society we presently live in, are we not? As Mr. James says in this
article, H.G. Wells puts it best:

many ways military organization is the most peaceful of activities.
When the contemporary man steps from the street, of clamorous
insincere advertisement, push, adulteration, underselling and
intermittent employment into the barrack-yard, he steps on to
a higher social plane, into an atmosphere of service and cooperation
and of infinitely more honorable emulations. Here at least men
are not flung out of employment to degenerate because there is
no immediate work for them to do. They are fed a drilling and
training for better services. Here at least a man is supposed
to win promotion by self-forgetfulness and not by self-seeking.
And beside the feeble and irregular endowment of research by commercialism,
its little shortsighted snatches at profit by innovation and scientific
economy, see how remarkable is the steady and rapid development
of method and appliances in naval and military affairs! Nothing
is more striking than to compare the progress of civil conveniences
which has been left almost entirely to the trader, to the progress
in military apparatus during the last few decades. The house-appliances
of today, for example, are little better than they were fifty
years ago. A house of today is still almost as ill-ventilated,
badly heated by wasteful fires, clumsily arranged and furnished
as the house of 1858. Houses a couple of hundred years old are
still satisfactory places of residence, so little have our standards
risen. But the rifle or battleship of fifty years ago was beyond
all comparison inferior to those we now possess; in power, in
speed, in convenience alike. No one has a use now for such superannuated

This alone
is beneficial from war for the pointy headed cowards. Not that war
is ever a self-sacrificial endeavor to save other human beings from
servitude or death at the hands of tyranny. True, very often that
is not the case, but sometimes it is. The disembodied concept of
war though is much more about being "drilled and trained for
better services." So all one needs is to be "drilled and
trained" without the war, and then one may magically possess
"martial virtues." The militarized person is then groomed
to carry out the collective minded "better services" envisioned
by the liberal-socialist elite their entire lives. Just that simpleminded,
just that juvenile.

Cutting through
the billows of hot air, Mr. James eventually felt the need to make
his case clear:

is my idea — there were, instead of military conscription, a conscription
of the whole youthful population to form for a certain number
of years a part of the army enlisted against Nature…"

What is meant
by this army "against Nature?" The "Nature"
here would be man's seeming innate and undying urge to be a bloodthirsty
brute, seeking barbaric conquest and loot, or the implementation
of his illusory concept of "good" by force. The operative
thought here though, that which is foundational to the NCSC and
the GIVE Act, is the "conscription of the whole youthful population
to form for a certain number of years." Certainly the concepts
of "good" put forth by non-brutish statists would be more
worthy of the service of the entire youth, than those of the brutish
statist? This idea of "the conscription of the whole youthful
population" is nothing new to the world outside our American
window. This concept was brought here from Germany by the likes
of James and Dewey, who suckled many a year at Germany's academic
teat. Look how wonderfully it played out in Germany, remember? This
is unnatural to the root of the American tree though.

What else does
the exalted and cumbrous brain of Mr. James have to offer in this

these beliefs of mine put me firmly into the anti-military party.
But I do not believe that peace either ought to be or will be
permanent on this globe, unless the states, pacifically organized,
preserve some of the old elements of army-discipline. A permanently
successful peace-economy cannot be a simple pleasure-economy.
In the more or less socialistic future toward which mankind seems
drifting we must still subject ourselves collectively to those
severities which answer to our real position upon this only partly
hospitable globe. We must make new energies and hardihoods continue
the manliness to which the military mind so faithfully clings.
Martial virtues must be the enduring cement; intrepidity, contempt
of softness, surrender of private interest, obedience to command,
must still remain the rock upon which states are built."

The pseudo-wars
that need to be created and engaged in, in order to instill the
pseudo "martial virtues" in our youth, are an essential
part of continuing and expediting "the more or less socialistic
future toward which mankind seems drifting." "We must
still subject ourselves collectively" he claims, in order to
"make new energies and hardihoods continue the manliness …
intrepidity, contempt of softness, surrender of private interest,
obedience to command, must still remain the rock upon which states
are built." This is what the socialist state of a Mr. James
is built on, and this is what the youth need mandatory grooming
for, through such means as the "educational" instrument
embodied in the likes of a GIVE Act.

Yet more from
the statist brain of Mr. James:

war-party is assuredly right in affirming and reaffirming that
the martial virtues, although originally gained by the race through
war, are absolute and permanent human goods. Patriotic pride and
ambition in their military form are, after all, only specifications
of a more general competitive passion. They are its first form,
but that is no reason for supposing them to be its last form.
Men are now proud of belonging to a conquering nation, and without
a murmur they lay down their persons and their wealth, if by so
doing they may fend off subjection. But who can be sure that other
aspects of one’s country may not, with time and education
and suggestion enough, come to be regarded with similarly effective
feelings of pride and shame?"

These "martial
virtues" are effective in brutish war and all, "but that
is no reason for supposing them to be its last form," that
is, all they are good for. "But who can be sure that other
aspects of one’s country may not, with time and education and suggestion
enough, come to be regarded with similarly effective feelings of
pride and shame," as they do in actual brutish military service?

But how does
one instill these "martial virtues" otherwise, Mr. James
queries himself:

is only a question of blowing on the spark until the whole population
gets incandescent, and on the ruins of the old morals of military
honor, a stable system of morals of civic honor builds itself
up. What the whole community comes to believe in grasps the individual
as in a vise. The war-function has grasped us so far; but the
constructive interests may some day seem no less imperative, and
impose on the individual a hardly lighter burden. Let me illustrate
my idea more concretely…and this is my idea — there were, instead
of military conscription, a conscription of the whole youthful
population to form for a certain number of years a part of the
army enlisted against Nature, the injustice would tend
to be evened out, and numerous other goods to the commonwealth
would remain blind as the luxurious classes now are blind, to
man’s relations to the globe he lives on, and to the permanently
sour and hard foundations of his higher life."

If you read
this essay in full, you would see that the "injustice which
would tend to be evened out" by the service-learning programs
for which "the conscription of the whole youthful population"
is called for, is nothing other than those pesky inequalities between
the socialist's concept of classes. The standard class warfare socialist
swill. These pseudo-wars that need to be a mandatory part of all
public-statist school curriculum is nothing other than the age-old
Marxist yelp of "he has more stuff than him. I must rectify
this." As stated above, it is essential to "the more or
less socialistic future toward which mankind seems drifting,"
that the teaching of class warfare be mandatory.

The magnanimous
pontificator continues:

coal and iron mines, to freight trains, to fishing fleets in December,
to dishwashing, clotheswashing, and windowwashing, to road-building
and tunnel-making, to foundries and stoke-holes, and to the frames
of skyscrapers, would our gilded youths be drafted off, according
to their choice, to get the childishness knocked out of them,
and to come back into society with healthier sympathies and soberer
ideas. They would have paid their blood-tax, done their own part
in the immemorial human warfare against nature; they would tread
the earth more proudly, the women would value them more highly,
they would be better fathers and teachers of the following generation.
Such a conscription, with the state of public opinion that would
have required it, and the many moral fruits it would bear, would
preserve in the midst of a pacific civilization the manly virtues
which the military party is so afraid of seeing disappear in peace.
We should get toughness without callousness, authority with as
little criminal cruelty as possible, and painful work done cheerily
because the duty is temporary, and threatens not, as now, to degrade
the whole remainder of one’s life."

The "nature"
of real brutish warfare is nothing other than the plundering of
the have-nots by the haves, as Mr. James and his ilk would have
it. The youth must be taught to war against this anti-collectivist
and brutish "nature." It is only then that they can be
proud of themselves and their society, when they have learned to
war against this realest of "injustices," when they have
mandatorily volunteered, as the GIVE Act would have it, to serve
the oppressed peoples.

Mr. James goes
on and on:

"I spoke
of the "moral equivalent" of war. So far, war has been
the only force that can discipline a whole community, and until
and equivalent discipline is organized, I believe that war must
have its way. But I have no serious doubt that the ordinary prides
and shames of social man, once developed to a certain intensity,
are capable of organizing such a moral equivalent as I have sketched,
or some other just as effective for preserving manliness of type.
It is but a question of time, of skillful propagandism, and of
opinion-making men seizing historic opportunities."

The "moral
equivalent of war" is nothing other than socialist class warfare.
The "equivalent discipline that needs to be organized"
is further unveiled in the GIVE Act. This act is not only the fruition
of the foundation laid by Mr. James, but also the embodiment of
plans announced by both Barrack Obama, and his Chief of Staff Rahm
Emmanuel. Plans to have "a civilian national security force."
In July 2008 Obama stated (and repeated many times before and since)
"We cannot continue to rely on our military in order to achieve
the national security objectives we've set. We've got to have a
civilian national security force that is just as powerful, just
as strong, just as well funded." His Chief of Staff, Rahm Emanuel,
stated his intention to help create "universal civil defense
training" in 2006. Despite denials from the Obama administration
about specific plans to institute a mandatory program of national
service, his original website stated that Americans would
be "required" to complete "50 hours of community
service in middle school and high school and 100 hours of community
service in college every year." The text was only later changed
to state that Americans would be "encouraged" to undertake
such programs. This of course would be an example of the "skillful
propagandism of opinion-making men seizing historic opportunities."
We've heard much about seizing the "historic opportunities"
that emerge out of crisis lately, haven't we? According to the statists
that crafted the GIVE Act, and all the preceding legislation and
agencies that led to its birthing, the "question of time"
proposed by Mr. James is now being answered.

A bit more
of Mr. James will suffice:

martial type of character can be bred without war…Priests and
medical men are in a fashion educated to it, and we should all
feel some degree of its imperative if we were conscious of our
work as an obligatory service to the state. We should be owned,
as soldiers are by the army, and our pride would rise accordingly…The
only thing needed henceforward is to inflame the civic temper
as part history has inflamed the military temper … H.G. Wells
adds that he thinks that the conceptions of order and discipline,
the tradition of service and devotion, of physical fitness, unstinted
exertion, and universal responsibility, which universal military
duty is now teaching European nations, will remain a permanent
acquisition when the last ammunition has been used in the fireworks
that celebrate the final peace. I believe as he does. It would
be simply preposterous if the only force that could work ideals
of honor and standards of efficiency into English or American
natures should be the fear of being killed by the Germans or the
Japanese. Great indeed is Fear; but it is not, as our military
enthusiasts believe and try to make us believe, the only stimulus
known for awakening the higher ranges of men’s spiritual energy."

should be owned, as soldiers are by the army?" "Owned"
is pregnant with visions of involuntary servitude, is it not? The
further you delve into this brain spewing of Mr. James, the concept
of "temporary" seems to evaporate. Nevertheless, being
"owned," either temporarily or permanently, is still involuntary
servitude. Notice again, the necessity to "inflame the civic
temper," to "blowing on the spark until the whole population
gets incandescent," through means of "skilful propagandism
of opinion-making men." All of this points to the unnatural,
the artificial, the fabricated nature of the entirety of what the
statist mind puts out as truth. Such are the minds of the Jameses,
the Deweys, the Obamas, the Emmanuels. They are unnatural, artificial,
fake, deceptive, in a word…lying. That they can state their lies
articulately and eloquently does not make them not lies. It does
though make them Orwellian unlies.

Under section
6104 of the GIVE Act, entitled Duties, in subsection B6, the legislation
states that a commission will be set up to investigate whether a
workable, fair, and reasonable mandatory service requirement
for all able young people could be developed, and how such a requirement
could be implemented in a manner that would strengthen the social
fabric of the Nation and overcome civic challenges.

One may ask,
"What's the big deal about kids doing some good for their community?"
There is one very simple answer for this…"What's the big deal
with your kids being OWNED by an omnipotent government?" What
a wonderful example of its delights the Germans and their drilled
and trained wunderkinder left us? Mandatory involuntary service
shall set us all free!

25, 2009

Gallucci [send him mail]
is a homeschooling father and songwriter living in the People’s
Republic of Maine. His music can be heard at

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