On October 2nd, ROAR supporter/contributor Alexandra York participated in an online panel discussion, “Socialism in America” hosted by John Anthony, Founder of the Sustainable Freedom Lab. To listen to her segment, please select the following link: http://sustainablefreedomlab.org/sia-part-2/?ct=t()&mc_cid=556d6b90d1&mc_eid=3983b5cb8e. The text of her talk is presented below. Please note: a portion of her talk near the end was cut off, but the text below includes her full presentation. Also, for a more extensive discussion of the subject matter covered in her talk, please see her monograph: LYING AS A WAY OF LIFE: Corruption and Collectivism Come of Age in America (https://www.amazon.com/LYING-WAY-LIFE-Corruption-Collectivism-ebook/dp/B01F27QF0O/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1462994127&sr=1-1&keywords=LYING+YORK) – Mike Gemmell
SUSTAINABLE FREEDOM LAB BROADCAST
“America is great because she is good,
and if America will cease to be good, America will cease to be great.”
These words are attributed to 19th century DeToqueville following his visit to the United States. Today in the 21st century, most concerned Americans know something is wrong in our country, but they focus on deceitfulness from political players. Even some—not many– media people are beginning to voice condemnation of the countless lies coming out of Washington D.C. on every level imaginable. . . and from others wishing to sit in the Oval Office next January. But I harken to DeToqueville’s sentiments instead: politics is merely the surface symptom of a deeper, festering whole-culture moral illness that is the source of the increase in lying and corruption in America and is now turning our distinct and historically unique culture into a socialistic wasteland.
A culture is much more than politics. It’s a national identity encompassing education, fine and popular arts and entertainment, science, physical and mental health, leisure activities, friend and family relationships, values, ambitions. . .everything that constitutes the basic shared core values of any country. In our case, the core value of individualism has been the common denominator linking all other aspects of our cultural distinctiveness; it is what makes The United States “America.” Valuing the sovereignty of individuals is precisely what makes America exceptional, so it’s the culture that warrants our attention because the actual, underlying disease invading the mental health of our country has arisen not from the government directly but from the injection of destructive ideas into our individualistic social-economic system.
So how did all this happen? Proposals suggesting the “transformation”—destruction—of Western civilization’s traditional values of reason, honesty, responsibility, productivity, independence, and individual worth were put forth by several intellectuals at the dawn of the twentieth century– I can’t go into all of that here. But—and this is very unknown still today– Marxism as a concept made concrete was imported and deliberately inserted into American cultural life beginning at New York’s Columbia University in the 1930s with the importation of the brilliant and diabolical Frankfurt School mostly-German scholars, who BTW were invited by John Dewey—Tom mentioned him last week. I urge everyone listening to simply Google this group to learn details about their openly declared, conscious plan to extinguish the beacon of freedom—America—from the inside out, a tragic drama that is being played out daily in America today from the federalized educational system to national health care to central banking to political correctness.
Here’s a brief intro: Once in America, The Frankfurt School scholars were quick to grasp that by infiltrating and influencing popular culture they could smuggle their Marxist ideology into the very soul of America—our traditional core values–and accomplish their political goals via stealth psychological manipulation without a gun being fired. Communication channels such as Hollywood and the entertainment industry along with the news media and both university and public education were specifically targeted for re-education, meaning propaganda programs. A society-oriented “critical theory” method of criticizing and then altering belief systems through subtle psychological methods was also utilized. This process effectively dislodged an individual’s deep-rooted value system and created a void into which they could then sow seeds of unrest and victimization. The “Studies” programs instituted first at Columbia and then spreading to other universities became and still are academia’s breeding grounds for instilling a tribal-group-think mindset in college students. Classes euphemistically titled “African” studies, “Women’s” studies, “Gender” studies, and so on work to bind birth or life-choice commonalities into powerful political group-movements that attack America’s sacred individual rights. New definitions of “equal rights” replaced fair competition, demanded a “leveling of the playing field,” and instituted the political correctness that has muzzled most of American society today.
Now the arts are always reflective of the heartbeat of a culture, and four generations later, we now see the osmosis-like absorption of The Frankfurt School’s ideas deep-rooted into our cultural life via nonstop entertainment diversions and continuing tribe-group demands ranging from the percentage of black actors nominated for Academy Awards to bathroom designations. Hardly anyone today even knows about The Frankfurt School because most people have already internalized their propaganda. Hollywood now offers a constant barrage of action movies full of sound and fury but signifying nothing more than juvenile sensationalism, sex, violence, and mindless distraction—Rome’s “bread and circuses” of our day. Worse, films have become more politically obvious not only by fueling the now habitual desire for sensory overload but also by delivering their collectivist, anti-American messages directly to audiences without subtle plots or the fancy glamour previously employed. The movie “Avatar,” romanticizing primitivism and demonizing advanced civilization via mesmerizing technology, comes quickly to mind.
Art galleries and museums displaying piles of bricks, auto parts glued together, a vacuum cleaner, males and females standing around naked, and all such nonsense work together to rob individuals of their own aesthetic and moral judgment. I mean recently the Guggenheim museum in NYC exhibited a gold toilet, and people waited in line for two hours to see it.
At the bottom of this nihilistic artistic heap, Rap “music” derived not from meaningful poetry but from ghetto street rhyme delivers mostly aggressive, angry lyrics via a mind-narcotizing beat, so today’s pop in an otherwise developed country becomes just another modern example of the devolution of mature, civilized American culture into primitive tribalism. Ditto for tattoos and body piercing.
The Frankfurt fellows must be spinning in their graves with glee at America’s cultural deterioration into perpetual and petulant groupy adolescence.
Now, getting back to DeToquevilles “GOOD.” Along with the degradation of popular art-entertainment distractions, the crux of America’s current decline that will result in some form of total social-economic collectivist political system, is a lack of understanding regarding the power of moral values. Lack of morality is rampant in every socialist-totalitarian society. I have experienced it first hand by working and spending serious time in countries all over the globe.
Definitions: Random House American Dictionary:
| Morality: conformity to the rules of right conduct; moral or virtuous conduct. Also: the
Doctrine or system of morals; ethics; duties.
|Immorality: immoral quality, character, or conduct; wickedness; vice.|
Amorality: neither moral nor immoral, not within the sphere of moral sense; not to be characterized as either good or bad; non moral.
So, morality is a concept that refers to a system of principles—or rules–setting patterns, limits, and standards for proper or “right” human behavior, and if an individual or group of individuals acts against the rules, they are deemed to be immoral, which means they are “wicked” and wrong.
Okay. The first two concepts–morality and immorality–are well understood in America. It’s the third one—amorality—that is largely misunderstood but crucial to identify and comprehend. Amorality is a state of affairs where there are no moral principles or rules to follow or betray. None. Even though a country may have rules regarding physical behavior, if there are no moral standards regarding truth, for example, then one cannot be right or wrong in such a societal vacuum because there is nothing to be right or wrong about. Individuals and groups of individuals in amoral countries lie whenever it suits their purpose: to cover up transgressions, to obscure evil intentions, to attain power, to obtain something they want, to get past a thorny communication or negotiation issue whether personal or business. A million motivations can prompt lying, but it doesn’t matter what the motives are, there is always some gain on the part of the liar that fabrication paves the way to achieving and there is no judgment, remorse, guilt, worry, or condemnation because lying is not a right or wrong thing. It just is. An axiomatic “Given.”
Now everyone in amoral cultures does not always lie, and there are many who never lie. Nevertheless, except for Western-heritage nations– Europe, Canada, Australia, and America–lying is the predominant way of life in most other countries. It is true that in the west, government and labor union officials lie regularly, and traditionally upright businesspeople have become corrupt from decades of dealing globally with amoral, collectivist countries—think China–and now with our own increasingly corrupt government; but here in the traditional “West” I ‘m talking about the general populace as being basically honest. Therefore, because lying is not considered wrong in amoral countries, it’s important for unsuspecting and trusting people (especially in today’s tumultuous cultural, political, and terrorist-threatened climate) whose moral system considers lying to be immoral to understand exactly what amorality is. It’s also necessary to understand amorality’s role in the present whole-culture deterioration of America’s historical moral value system and the future consequences if we as a country fully embrace the concept.
Now—and this is a main point here–every one of the countries where I have observed and experienced this amoral phenomenon has a past history of or still is in a present state of totalitarianism in one form or another. This subjugation of the general populace was formerly institutionalized in some countries by autocrats such as an emperor, king, or tsar and now by oppressive socialist or communist governments that replaced the autocrats. In other countries religious dictators, tribal chiefs, or war lords change hands or remain ever the same. So, actually, lying is an understandable way for an oppressed population to manage their very existence under such ultra-controlled, precarious, often-unpredictable conditions. Therefore lying in much of the world is utterly without conscience because it really is the only way to survive under tyrannies of one flavor or another.
American’s ever-growing mindset of non-judgmental acceptance of lying or apathy regarding whatever our so called “leaders” say or do is a precondition to complying with full socialism if and when it finally arrives. Plus, as amorality is accepted in government and business, it spills over into the general population and becomes the cultural norm as in other controlled countries.
In the United States, a significant level of socialistic control is already here, but it rubs against the nature of freedom loving Americans. Elsewhere in the world, although many brilliant individuals achieved astonishing feats of accomplishment, the general population never experienced the full taste of liberty. But America was born to be free of any totalitarian chains for all its population, and the sovereignty of every individual and the opportunities for individual achievement were fought for and hard won time and again throughout our history. Now, devaluation of individualism via tribal group-think and amorality replacing truth as a moral standard among “normal” Americans is leading to tyranny not resulting from it as in other already-controlled countries. It’s also leading to cultural suicide.
It is crucial to understand that although other countries have been forever under the yoke of rulers, they have not lost their cultural identity. Japan suffered past dictates from an Emperor to present dictates from an elected but authoritarian government; yet the Japanese cultural values of art, family, education, and personal refinement remain the same. Japan is still uniquely Japan. France eliminated monarchy and accepts socialism, but it is still French in its cultural values. This can be said of most every country under tyranny of one sort or another. The people may labor under various physical and economic constraints and regulations, but their cultural values are still distinctly their own.
Unless we resist, here in America the ruling elite will succeed in wielding their physical-political-economic power over us via a combination of socialistic and fascistic methods. Unlike other countries that never held the individual as a prime value, however, we will suffer loss of our core cultural value of individualism along with the loss of our freedom. We are a nation consciously conceived on the idea of individual sovereignty, and our constitution recognizes and is supposed to protect our freedom of choice and our lawful rights. It’s precisely this cultural-political-economic alignment of individualism-based values that has made America glorious and unique. But if we surrender our economic-political freedoms, we at the same time surrender our cultural identity. So, it’s the whole culture of individualism in all its aspects—art, education, health choices, creative entrepreneurship, our very distinctiveness as a free people—that is under siege from within at this critical moment in time.
Ever increasing government controls and regulations dictating and micro-managing our daily lives, educational indoctrination that encourages group-think, corrupt business practices abroad and crony capitalism at home, political correctness compromising common sense— All of these limit freedom of activity and choice, independent judgment, and even vocal utterances once known as free speech. . .I mean free speech zones? What is that. . .in America? Add to these, a growing amorality in action and we see our whole culture of individualism in all its aspects as a free nation for free people in peril. It’s not too late, but it is time for Americans to wake up to the clarion call of the freedom that is our birthright and stand together as individuals against those who would sweep us into the tangled net of collectivism for none other than their own personal purposes of power.