The Irrepressible Rothbard
Essays of Murray N. Rothbard
Edited by Llewellyn H. Rockwell, Jr.
HUNTING THE CHRISTIAN RIGHT
Watch out, Johnnie and Janie, the Christians are out to get you! There is nothing that gets liberal dander up so much as a witch hunt. (Is that because there aren't any witches or because so many liberals are part of a coven?) And the big rap against Joe McCarthy and other anti-Communists in the old days was that they were engaged in a witch hunt (presumably because there were no Commies, although recent revelations by ex-KGB biggies tell a very different tale). But now the left-liberals in the media and among the Democrats are off on a new and bigger witch-hunt of their own: a Christian hunt!
(Readers over 40: did you ever think that, in America, a "Christian" would be an object of reproach, of shame, of pointing-the-finger?)
You see, the problem is that Christians those sneaky devils!Care on the march; they're taking over, in particular, the Republican Party. And, once again, as they have done effectively so many times, left-liberals, who wouldn't be caught dead voting Republican, are rushing, dewy-eyed, to try to save the wonderful old GOP from those terrible, extreme, Christians.
The left-media hype approaches the Christian "invasion" or "takeover" in the vein of that grand old-science-fiction-horror movie, The Invasion of the Body Snatchers. (The Don Siegel-Kevin McCarthy original of the 1950s, not the later gory imitators.) Look! They look like people! They go to precinct meetings like people! They claim they're Republicans! But they're really, down-deep, Christians! They are "stealth candidates." They're taking over!
So what's wrong with these Christians, anyway? They're "extremists!" Oooh! On what? Well, they're single-issue types: they're only interested in abortion. Soon, it turned out patently that that wasn't true: for example, the Christian right (for they indeed, are the Christians under attack) are also passionately interested in saving their children from multicultural, socialistic, condomaniacal, anti-Christian public schooling.
And so the anti-Christian left retreated to another line of attack: they're "creationists"! They're interfering with the separation of church and state! They want voluntary prayer in the schools! But why is even discussing a Christian view in the schools a breach in this holy wall of "separation of church and state," while presenting all sorts of New Age propaganda, channeling, pantheistic mysticism, etc. is not a breach in such a wall? It is pretty clear that the only separation of religion from the public schools that left-liberals are interested in is from Christianity, not from religion in general.
The liberal media have spun an entire web of disinformation and lies around the Christian right. First, there is the notion that there are two types of Republicans: the Christian right only interested in "social issues (bad), and economic conservatives interested in safe issues like taxes and economic controls (good). Or, alternatively, that there are three types of Republicans: the Christian right (bad), the economic conservatives (so-so), and the "moderates" (wonderful), who are left-liberal on all issues, or who are willing to cave into the left everywhere.
All this is baloney. The Christian right might well have been inspired into activism by abortion or by the horrible state of the public schools, but by this time the nature of the Enemy is clear, and they have become "conservatives" on all issues, anti-tax and pro-free market as well as cultural rightists. Recently some of the media left have tried to take this glaringly obvious fact into account. Note the "Invasion of the Body Snatchers" way they're going about it: "they're pretending to be economic conservatives too, but they're really still only social conservatives." Come again?
Hey, I think I see the liberals' problem: they're believers in the "conspiracy theory of history"!
And then of course there is the Orwellian rewriting of history: blaming the disastrous Bush defeat on Pat Buchanan's and Pat Robertson's speeches at the Houston convention. Ooh, they were so "negative," so "hate-filled." Even little Danny Quayle, in his recent apologia, has bought into this nonsense. Actually, the Bush campaign went up in the polls after the Buchanan and Robertson speeches; the campaign fell again later as Bush fumbled everything, took no stand, and failed to be "negative" on any important issue. Hence, the collapse.
No denunciation of Christians or the Christian right would be complete without the good old canard of "anti-Semitism," and sure enough, leave it to the Anti-Defamation League of B'nai B'rith [ADL], which has been peddling this nonsense for half a century, to step up to the plate. But this time, in its booklet smearing "The Religious Right," the ADL has gone much too far, and its hatred of Christianity, now out of the "closet" so to speak, is bound to cause a powerful backlash. For the ADL now takes after Pat Robertson and the Christian Coalition, probably the most prominent group on the Christian right. But how in the world can the ADL smear Robertson as "anti-Semitic" when he and his group have been slavish supporters of Israel, largely on pre-millennialist religious grounds? Dropping its automatic Seal of Approval for pro-Zionists, in the interest of a greater cause, the ADL attacks Robertson because one of his major assistants is a Jewish convert to Christianity! Aha! The agenda revealed! For is it indeed "anti-Semitic" for a Jew to convert to Christianity, or for Christians to place him in a position of responsibility? Similarly, the ADL attacks the prominent evangelical minister Louis Sheldon, because his mother was an Orthodox Jewess. If the ADL is indeed taking the position that for a Jew to convert to Christianity is "anti-Semitic," it should proclaim such an absurd position loud and clear: because no one, except a few Jewish religious fanatics, is going to go along with such an argument.
The ADL, in its booklet, goes on to condemn a number of Jews for endorsing and allying themselves with the Christian right, making it, at least to some extent, a Christian + Jewish religious right. Long-time conservative syndicated columnist Don Feder is attacked for supporting the Christian right, and Orthodox Rabbi Daniel Lapin, head of an interesting new Seattle-based group, Toward Tradition, is denounced by the ADL for being "too strident." So, are these nonconverted Jews also to be considered "anti-Semitic" because they praise the Christian right? To such a depth has the ADL sunk, a depth that is so idiotic as to lose it all credibility. And that couldn't happen to a more deserving organization.
In taking on Rabbi Lapin, by the way, the ADL has gone up against a formidable figure. Tough, bright, savvy, and libertarian, Rabbi Lapin is an impressive person who should be better known on the conservative scene. One of Rabbi Lapin's central organizing principles is defense of the Christian right, and to form a new kind of Christian-Jewish dialogue on rightist principles.
We have learned to defend ourselves from the Democrats, from the biased and destructive liberal media; we must now learn to guard against the worst foes, the traitors from within Republican ranks. It was the French Marechal Villars who is supposed to have said: "Defend me from my friends; I can defend myself from my enemies." And so the worst enemies of the right are those Republican left-liberals (so-called "moderates") who stab in the back, who refuse to accept the results of fair political contests within the Republican Party. Thus, in late June the Iowa Republican Party invited various possible Republican presidential candidates to speak at a fund-raising dinner, and then took a straw poll of the 1350 delegates. The important point is not the inclusive very early poll, but two speeches which viciously attacked the Christian right, echoing the absurd attacks by the media and the Democrats. One was by left-liberal former New Jersey Governor Tom Kean; another, and particularly reprehensible, was by Pennsylvanian Arlen Specter, who has compiled one of the most left-wing voting records among Republicans in the Senate. Specter denounced the Christian right "takeover" in the Texas party by stating that "it was wrong philosophically because it violated the basic American principle of separation of church and state." Look, being tough on Anita Hill is about the only conservative deed ever performed by Specter; one good deed in a lifetime of liberal hackery is scarcely enough.
I'll say it only once more: it does not violate the separation of church and state principle for Christians to get involved in politics, or to take political stands. Or even for Christian ministers or priests to do so. For people who use this absurd argument, this point should be thrown into their face: All right, are you prepared to repudiate all the political activities of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King? Or of all the other black ministers? Are you prepared to condemn Catholic Bishops when they agitated for civil rights legislation? And if not, why not? And if not, please inter this idiotic argument once and for all. The blatant hypocrisy of left-liberals on this entire matter is a stench unto one's nostrils. They must not be allowed to get away with this intellectual fraud.
THE "BIG TENT"
During the month of June, the Christian Right allegedly took over the Republican Party in three important states: Virginia, Texas, and Minnesota. We shall examine these states in turn. But first, let us consider the Republican Party as the vehicle for the right-wing populist counterrevolution (and let us assume for the moment that it is), then, the right-wing task is two-fold: one, to battle within the Republican Party to control that party and to name its candidates and write its platform; and two, to support loyally whoever wins within the Republican Party against the evil Democracy in the general election. In this view, the Republican Party is indeed a "big tent" in that we welcome all votes against the Democracy, and also a "big tent" in that we are willing to support whoever wins within the party in November. But it is in no sense a "Big Tent" in which we are supposed to abandon fighting for our principles and for those who will represent them within the party. In short, we battle to control the party and its platform, as much as possible to mold that party into the vehicle of counterrevolution, of returning to the Old Republic; but we support whoever wins against the Democrats. I don't know why this should be so difficult a strategy to understand or explain; indeed, this has always been the basic strategy of most ideological groups within either party.
So evidently proper is this strategy, in fact, that we can only consider the hysterical attacks on the "religious right" for being narrow, for employing litmus tests, etc. as willful misrepresentations of the Christian right's strategy by its enemies: media, Democrats, and leftist Republicans. Indeed, it is instructive to compare Pat Buchanan's strategies during his run for the presidency in 1991-92 to the traitorous course of the Official Cons and neoconservatives. First, Pat ran as the voice of the conservative opposition against the crumbling Bush presidency in the primaries; during that period, all of Pat's enemies, liberals, Official Cons, and neocons, denounced Pat for treason to the Republican administration and betrayal of President Bush. Then, after Pat's loss in the primaries and the convention, he took what used to be considered the normal strategic course (such as we are advocating here), and came out wholeheartedly in favor of Bush's reelection; for consider the alternative! But then, the very same neocons and Official Cons who had denounced Pat for betrayal, themselves stabbed President Bush in the back at every opportunity, some openly jumping the fence to side with the "New Democrat" Clinton (only "new" if new means "worse"), and others doing their best to undercut and sabotage the Bush campaign from within. Which strategy was more honorable? Or more defensible in the long run?
Let us now take the three Christian takeover states in turn. Virginia, of course, was the most famous, as Ollie North repelled the hysterical attacks of the entire Republican Establishment, from Ronald Reagan on down, and won a smashing victory among the mass of activist delegates at the Republican convention. The media and the Establishment, down to the wire, claimed that the Establishment candidate, Jim Miller, might well win; the polls had North ahead by 53 to 47 percent; and the liberals slyly pointed out that the ballot would be secret, so that Miller might win implying, of course, that many delegates pledged to North could vote their conscience free of intimidation by Christian nightriders. In the actual event, however, reality once again showed up liberal ties: for the final count was a smashing 55 to 45 percent victory for North, even more than the polls had estimated.
How did the Republican opposition react to the North victory? Did they loyally get behind Ollie once the votes were taken, as the Christian right loyally got behind such non-Christian-rightists as Paul Coverdell in Georgia and Kay Bailey Hutchison in Texas propelling them into the Senate? To give them their due, most of the Republican Establishment did the right thing, and came loyally to Ollie's support: including Jim Miller, Governor Allen, Dick Cheney, Haley Barbour, Phil Gramm, Bill Bennett, and Jack Kemp (although Kemp waffled on Minnesota).
But not Bob Dole. High-tax Bob, Mr. "Compromise" (i.e., surrender to Democratic schemes). Off attending D-Day celebrations in Europe, Dole was out of town and out of touch. He was off together with the evil, prune-faced, traitorous, left-liberal Virginia Republican Senator John Warner. Warner, who did not bother attending his own state party's convention, had led the vicious attack on North; he had already made it clear that he would bolt the ticket and sponsor an independent candidate for governor this year: former State Attorney-General J. Marshall Coleman. After the convention, then, Dole made public noises about possibly bolting North and endorsing the Coleman race. Well, everything hit the fan, and Republican biggies as well as people all over the country informed Dole in no uncertain terms that, if he persisted, he could kiss the presidential nomination goodbye in 1996. It took him almost a week, but Dole finally came around to support North. But it's a good bet that this flirtation with Coleman has put the kibash on a Dole for President race in 1996. And high time, too; do we need to nominate one of the few Republicans almost guaranteed to lose to Clinton in '96?
And talk about losers: the highly touted J. Marshall Coleman is precisely that. The bland, colorless Coleman is a three-time loser; twice he ran for governor of Virginia, and once for lieutenant-governor, and every time he lost. Write him off, even in a tangled four-way race.
As for Warner, he comes up for re-election in 1996, and it is absolutely vital that he be punished and retired to private life. Anyone but Warner! In addition to having a voting record almost as leftish as Specter, traitors must be disposed of, and fast. Warner, by the way, liked to take the High Moral Ground on Ollie and say that he lied to Congress. Ooh, unforgivable! But Warner is a two-time traitor, because he also sabotaged the heroic Mike Farris, who was on the Republican ticket for lieutenant-governor last year. Farris, a young attorney of sterling integrity, never lied to anyone; but he was openly sabotaged by Warner because Farris is an "extremist," and of the "religious right" to boot. Farris's "extremism" is the fact that he is one of the national leaders of one of the most hopeful, inspiring, and yes libertarian movements in America today: the home schooling movement. America is groaning under a massive, rotten, oppressive, socialistic, multicultural, aggressively degenerate institution: the public school system. There are many excellent ideas among the Christian Right on doing something about the public schools, to roll them back, to restrict their horror, but the most consistent, most radical, and best plan is to dump them altogether, and the best way to dump them is through home schooling. There is talk that Farris might run against the monster Warner in '96, and it would be poetic justice for Farris to take his place in the U.S. Senate.
Warner, by the way, is a millionaire country-club Republican, who only got elected in the first place during the year or two he was Mr. Elizabeth Taylor.
There will be a four-way race in Virginia, because Democrat Governor L. Douglas Wilder is running as an independent, in order to destroy his mortal intra-party enemy, Senator Chuck Robb, who is running for reelection. Robb, like Clinton a phony "New Democrat" who is simply a left-liberal, has severe morals problems with babes and coke reminiscent of Slick Willie himself. Wilder should get the black votes, and in the melee, the chances for Ollie to enter the U.S. Senate look very good indeed.
In Texas, too, there is a lot of liberal wailing and gnashing of teeth at the "takeover" by the religious right. The big fight was over state chair. A liberal lady from Houston, and Congressman Joe Barton, backed by the Gramm-Hutchison establishment, were overwhelmed by the religious right candidate, Tom Pauken, who was backed by Pat Robertson and the Christian Coalition.
However, from friends in Texas, I find that, once again, the idea of religious fanatics or theocrats taking over the Republican Party is a typical liberal smear. Actually, Pauken, a Catholic and a former Reagan administration official, is an upstanding person who made open overtures to libertarians within the Texas Republican Party. Indeed, Pauken's anti-gun control assistant is a man who co-founded the Texas Libertarian Party over twenty years ago. What distinguishes the Paukenites is that they are anti-Establishment populists; they embody a new wave in the Republican Party, of conservatives-and-libertarians, of paleos if you will, rising up to challenge the quasi-sellout, country-club Republican establishment. Again, Phil Gramm, who is nothing if not shrewd, quickly absorbed his loss and praised Pauken and his new populist movement.
The Texas Republican Party is, at this point, a "Big Tent" coalition. Rightists have to support George W. Bush for governor in the interests of dumping the horrid, wise-cracking, whiskey-soaked Ann Richards from the gubernatorial post. But the Texas Party machinery is now in good hands.
I have the most personal knowledge of the situation in Minnesota, a classically left-wing state where the Christian right victory in the Republican Party has been attacked almost as much as Ollie North's in Virginia. For decades, ever since the Harold Stassen-Luther Youngdahl tradition got established, Minnesota Republicans have been nearly as left-wing as the notoriously leftist Minnesota Democracy. (It wasn't always that way. During the 1940s and 1950s, Minnesota's magnificently Old Right Congressman Harold Knutson was the outstanding opponent of high taxes in the Congress.) For the past four years, by a fluke, Minnesota has been stuck with a left-wing Republican governor, Arne Carlson, whom Human Events has properly characterized as a "Ted Kennedy Republican." It's not just that Carlson is leftish on social or moral issues; he's also high-tax, high-control, high-spend. The conservative rebellion within the Republican Party is led by Allen Quist, a farmer and former state legislator. In mid-June, at the Republican state convention, Quist accomplished the feat of crushing a sitting Republican governor, by a vote of 69 to 31 percent. Unfortunately, the two will have to face off in a September primary, but the convention endorsement should give Quist a hefty boost for the primary battle.
I was invited to give the keynote address to the Minnesota Young Republican Convention two weeks before the state party meeting. I was enormously impressed by the devotion to principle, the intelligence, and the organizational savvy, of the Minnesota YR leaders, who were a driving force in the Quist campaign. Of the 200 or so people who turned out for my after-dinner talk, all the top conservative candidates were there, from Quist on down to several conservative possibles for U.S. Senate (won at the convention by Congressman Rod Grams), and conservative candidates for Congress and other posts. Several of the leading Minnesota YR cadres are enthusiastic Triple R subscribers (always a great sign), and knowledgeable paleos.
I was slated to speak on the Clinton Health Plan, and was urged by the organizers to hold nothing back. That was the only encouragement I needed! I gave a slam-bang address, holding nothing back in escalating from the health problem to call for a right-wing populist counter.-revolution against the Menshevik social democratic elite who have foisted their evil socialist program on America. I denounced the typical Republican program of consolidating previous socialistic gains, and called for a rollback to Take Back America. I was delighted to find that no one gasped in horror; everyone loved it, and cheered for more.
Perhaps the single point I made that drew most fervent support was to say that the real problem in America is not the so-called "religious right" or "Christian right"; the real problem is the monstrous religious left: the collectivist, egalitarian, condomaniacal, communalist New Age-"Christian" left: it is this left that has virtually taken over the country and the culture, and must be rolled back!
THE CHRISTIAN RIGHT
The Christian Right is doing very well, and is on the march in the Republican Party. Hence, the torrent of abuse and smear, from media, Democrats, and traitorous Republican "moderates." It is important for Christians not to wilt under the abuse. It is high time for Christians to stop being shamefaced. Christians should come out of the "closet," and proclaim, "we are out and we are proud!" They have the principles, they are becoming all-round conservatives and libertarians, and they are acquiring the necessary organizational and political savvy. And they should no longer allow their enemies to "define" them, to say that they must not carry religious or moral principles into the political arena, or that they must confine themselves to "conserving," but never take the offensive to return to the old American Republic. Christians should have the courage to be "right" and to be "radical right," let the radical left, or "radical wrong," try to make the most of it.
Christians must also refuse to let their enemies set their agenda. The left is already saying that it is terribly wrong to use such terms as "evil" in relation to one's enemies. No, no, say they, we should only use terms like "cost-ineffective" or "too rapid." Well, too bad, because there is only one way to fully portray the socialistic, degenerate program that the Clintonians are trying to foist upon America. And that word is "evil." What other word can best sum up Slick Willie, and "St. Hillary," Doc Joycelyn and the rest of that scurvy crew?
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