Skip to comments.Romney's Radical Roots (his "John Birch Society" connection)
Posted on 01/09/2010 9:09:37 PM PST by CondoleezzaProtege
...Romneys argument with the Iowa talk-radio host starts with the two discussing their shared affinity for W. Cleon Skousen. You and I share a common affection for the late Cleon Skousen, the radio host says. The former governor agrees, affirming Skousen was his professor."
Who is Cleon Skousen you might ask? In answering that question, its hard to even know where to begin. Skousen was by turns an FBI employee, the police chief of Salt Lake City, a Brigham Young University professor, consigliore to former secretary of agriculture and Mormon president Ezra Taft Benson and, well, all-around nutjob.
Skousen was active with the John Birch Society throughout the 1960s, even going so far as to write another book titled The Communist Attack on the John Birch Society, accusing those that criticized Birchers as promoting Communism.
Skousens Communist paranoia may have reached its apotheosis in 1970 when the Mormon church and BYU in particular began receiving a tremendous amount of external pressure to change the churchs policy on denying the Mormon priesthood to blacks. Skousen, then a professor at BYU, published an article entitled The Communist Attack on the Mormons and noted that critics were employing Communist tactics which were distorting the religious tenet of the Church regarding the Negro and blowing it up to ridiculous proportions. The Mormon Church reversed course on its discriminatory practices in 1978 and began ordaining black men to the priesthood.
..."I sincerely doubt that Mitt Romney believes anything near as outlandish as many of the things Cleon Skousen espoused, and to be fair Skousen wrote on numerous topics with wildly varying degrees of intellectual sobriety."
(Excerpt) Read more at article.nationalreview.com ...
Tea Party Convention all the way! :)
Glenn is even pushing Skousen’s book, the 5000 year leap.
BTW, Skousen was never a member of the John Birch Society. His son was.
Yeah I don’t doubt that the majority of John Birch Society members mean well nor that many of their ideas are right on. They just have a bizarre legacy that’s all, and the whole array of sponsors at CPAC is strange. Regardless, I am just happy Palin is headlining her own convention and I like the feel and breed of people involved with putting the Tea Party Convention together. :)
I find it hard to believe that he could have become Governor of MA without such a radical connection becoming extremely well known during the campaign!!!
Like minds had better come together or we're all going to have another 4 years of Zero.
whoever posted “mlk 4 romney” in the keyword section, i think u mean “milk* 4 romney.” LoL
Is the Tea Party Convention going to be covered by CSPAN? I wish I could go! I will pray for its success.
Skousen’s “The Making Of America” is one of the best books I’ve ever read about American history, and the proper role of constitutional government, without any doubt!!!
can somebody explain to me the bad baggage the john birch society has? they seem to believe in good things...do they have a racist path or something i’m not aware of?
Thank you for clearing that up!!!
It’s too bad the National Review article doesn’t have a comment board.
Ya gotta love yellow journalism.
Isn’t the National Review the late uber conservative intellectual Bill Buckley’s pride and joy???
Over the past five decades the JBS has engaged in undermining every aspect of political conservatism. They've engaged in character assassination of some real patriotic Americans. Calling President Eishenower a communist dupe. This dispicable behavior prompted conservative icons Bill Buckley and Russell Kirk to renounce the JBS founder Robert Welch. Even Barry Goldwater steered clear of the Birchers.
The fact that the JBS vehimently opposed Reagan's two campaigns for Governor and his three serious runs for President should be enough proof for any fair minded conservative to conclude that the JBS is a bunch of fringe malcontents. The JBS can't be taken seriously.
Chevydude, I was wondering the same thing! At face value, the JBS appears harmless, even a good organization.
I think despite whatever well-meaning intentions many of its members have, much of its history has been tainted by extreme racism, anti-semitism, and all sorts of random connections to weird cult-like fringe groups.
But it seems odd to me that an organization claiming to stand up for Constitutional principles would be so eager to sponsor CPAC, which I believe, (despite Ron Pauls presence) is the ultimate establishment group. Not that I want JBS to sponsor the Tea Party Convention either...
Also, it appears, that if the “Republican Party” is attempting to put on a “united” front at CPAC by having such a bizarre array of sponsors like JBS and GOProud and then speakers like Romney, Huckabee, and Ron Paul-—it’s doing a really really BAD job. Just seems like a bunch of confusion and mixed signals to me. The Tea Party appears to be a far more cohesive bunch with a greater ability to present a strong vision and coherent message.
...Yes I recognize Glenn Beck was one of the upstarters of the “Tea Party” movement in its initials stages, but I am pleased leaders like Sarah Palin and Michelle Bachmann are the ones taking the reins, motivating its direction, and becoming the movement’s official faces.
Communist Goals (1963) Congressional Record—Appendix, pp. A34-A35 January 10, 1963
Current Communist Goals EXTENSION OF REMARKS OF HON. A. S. HERLONG, JR. OF FLORIDA IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES Thursday, January 10, 1963.
Mr. HERLONG. Mr. Speaker, Mrs. Patricia Nordman of De Land, Fla., is an ardent and articulate opponent of communism, and until recently published the De Land Courier, which she dedicated to the purpose of alerting the public to the dangers of communism in America.
At Mrs. Nordman’s request, I include in the RECORD, under unanimous consent, the following “Current Communist Goals,” which she identifies as an excerpt from “The Naked Communist,” by Cleon Skousen:
[From “The Naked Communist,” by Cleon Skousen]
1. U.S. acceptance of coexistence as the only alternative to atomic war.
2. U.S. willingness to capitulate in preference to engaging in atomic war.
3. Develop the illusion that total disarmament [by] the United States would be a demonstration of moral strength.
4. Permit free trade between all nations regardless of Communist affiliation and regardless of whether or not items could be used for war.
5. Extension of long-term loans to Russia and Soviet satellites.
6. Provide American aid to all nations regardless of Communist domination.
7. Grant recognition of Red China. Admission of Red China to the U.N.
8. Set up East and West Germany as separate states in spite of Khrushchev’s promise in 1955 to settle the German question by free elections under supervision of the U.N.
9. Prolong the conferences to ban atomic tests because the United States has agreed to suspend tests as long as negotiations are in progress.
10. Allow all Soviet satellites individual representation in the U.N.
11. Promote the U.N. as the only hope for mankind. If its charter is rewritten, demand that it be set up as a one-world government with its own independent armed forces. (Some Communist leaders believe the world can be taken over as easily by the U.N. as by Moscow. Sometimes these two centers compete with each other as they are now doing in the Congo.)
12. Resist any attempt to outlaw the Communist Party.
13. Do away with all loyalty oaths.
14. Continue giving Russia access to the U.S. Patent Office.
15. Capture one or both of the political parties in the United States.
16. Use technical decisions of the courts to weaken basic American institutions by claiming their activities violate civil rights.
17. Get control of the schools. Use them as transmission belts for socialism and current Communist propaganda. Soften the curriculum. Get control of teachers’ associations. Put the party line in textbooks.
18. Gain control of all student newspapers.
19. Use student riots to foment public protests against programs or organizations which are under Communist attack.
20. Infiltrate the press. Get control of book-review assignments, editorial writing, policy-making positions.
21. Gain control of key positions in radio, TV, and motion pictures.
22. Continue discrediting American culture by degrading all forms of artistic expression. An American Communist cell was told to “eliminate all good sculpture from parks and buildings, substitute shapeless, awkward and meaningless forms.”
23. Control art critics and directors of art museums. “Our plan is to promote ugliness, repulsive, meaningless art.”
24. Eliminate all laws governing obscenity by calling them “censorship” and a violation of free speech and free press.
25. Break down cultural standards of morality by promoting pornography and obscenity in books, magazines, motion pictures, radio, and TV.
26. Present homosexuality, degeneracy and promiscuity as “normal, natural, healthy.”
27. Infiltrate the churches and replace revealed religion with “social” religion. Discredit the Bible and emphasize the need for intellectual maturity, which does not need a “religious crutch.”
28. Eliminate prayer or any phase of religious expression in the schools on the ground that it violates the principle of “separation of church and state.”
29. Discredit the American Constitution by calling it inadequate, old-fashioned, out of step with modern needs, a hindrance to cooperation between nations on a worldwide basis.
30. Discredit the American Founding Fathers. Present them as selfish aristocrats who had no concern for the “common man.”
31. Belittle all forms of American culture and discourage the teaching of American history on the ground that it was only a minor part of the “big picture.” Give more emphasis to Russian history since the Communists took over.
32. Support any socialist movement to give centralized control over any part of the culture—education, social agencies, welfare programs, mental health clinics, etc.
33. Eliminate all laws or procedures which interfere with the operation of the Communist apparatus.
34. Eliminate the House Committee on Un-American Activities.
35. Discredit and eventually dismantle the FBI.
36. Infiltrate and gain control of more unions.
37. Infiltrate and gain control of big business.
38. Transfer some of the powers of arrest from the police to social agencies. Treat all behavioral problems as psychiatric disorders which no one but psychiatrists can understand [or treat].
39. Dominate the psychiatric profession and use mental health laws as a means of gaining coercive control over those who oppose Communist goals.
40. Discredit the family as an institution. Encourage promiscuity and easy divorce.
41. Emphasize the need to raise children away from the negative influence of parents. Attribute prejudices, mental blocks and retarding of children to suppressive influence of parents.
42. Create the impression that violence and insurrection are legitimate aspects of the American tradition; that students and special-interest groups should rise up and use [”]united force[”] to solve economic, political or social problems.
43. Overthrow all colonial governments before native populations are ready for self-government.
44. Internationalize the Panama Canal.
45. Repeal the Connally reservation so the United States cannot prevent the World Court from seizing jurisdiction [over domestic problems. Give the World Court jurisdiction] over nations and individuals alike.
Good for you.
We should categorically dismiss the Birchers around here, and seeing people defend them on the Palin thread was painful. I guess now that Romney is connected to them, it's politically correct to denounce them, but that shows the weakness of some people's convictions and honesty.
I wouldn't care if the Birchers supported every candidate I do, they are a vile group that should be categorically dismissed by conservatives, and not only when we can connect them to someone we dislike.
I find it difficult to judge the conservatism of NR by one of it's reporters, especially one that chose to appear on 30 Rock with Alec Baldwin.
BTW, this article is from 2007.
My regard for Romney just went up a notch.
Darkwolf, even though I posted this thread and trust Palin’s judgment on things like this, I still don’t know much about JBS. I would like to know more about the controversies surrounding them out of curiosity. Can you please tell me more or lead me to an article with more information? That’d be great!
JBS was out-of-control perhaps, but I believe a fear of communism is healthy (200 million dead last century, compliments of the left).
“a regimented breed of Pavlovian men whose minds could be triggered into immediate action by signals from their masters.”
Oh, do you mean islamofascists?
“accused the Council on Foreign Relations and the Rockefellers of puppeteering the election of Jimmy Carter to pave the way for One World Government”
Wow, that is just SO out there. Not!
Those who don’t think communism is a threat are going to experience a very uncomfortable awakening. They may not proudly refer to themselves as ‘communist’ but the ideas are alive and well, and in the White House.
I don’t know how anyone can look at the past ten years, especially the last year, and think that the hard-left is no threat to us.
I wonder if the Wikipedia can be trusted on this topic....it sure couldn’t be trusted on AGW.....
Try the book “Unholy Alliance” for some hair raising insights.
Ripliancum, I read the Wikipedia article already and for all I know it stays edited by JBS especially with all the scrutiny now. LoL. It doesn’t go into too much detail about what exactly taints its legacy.
Hi Boucheau, I agree with many of your points. And as I said, the intentions of many of its members may be good...but at the same time, conspiracy theories can be taken a wee bit too far. While I understand Palin’s reasons for her foreign policy views, I don’t think anyone who “questions” our policies regarding Israel are automatically anti-Semites—the problem remains though that many actually are.
I would personally like to know more about the organization’s religious affiliations, and if they play a significant role in defining the overall worldview and agenda of the organization. So, the founder was supposedly a Christian, that’s no red flag, but are most of the members active Mormons or Masonic even?
Okay now I’m beginning to sound conspiratorial :p. Okay either way, its legacy is too tainted and it’s co-sponsoring an even with a bizarre combination of other groups, and that’s not cool.
This post made me think back to a photoshop I did of a young Myth Romney and MLK. LOL
My parents were Birchers, in the late 60’s, not radicals just mistrusting of the government.
Not Hippies,just ordinary people, that were classified as Birchers because they didn’t trust or have full faith in the government.They were very conservative,believed in owning guns,self-reliant,always had food stockpiled.
Taught us kids to be independent,to know that if someone says Don’t worry be Happy,we will take care of everything,be afraid, be very afraid!
The JBS is an ally for US sovereignty and freedom.
“As more journalists and bloggers dig into Skousen’s ties, the more we'll find that as much as he's seen as a “nutjob” and “crank” by conservatives like Mark Hemingway and David Frum, he has been more influential to the conservative movement than they would like to admit.”
Romney has zilch in common with the JBS. JBS may be a bit conspiracy minded, but they are conservatives and pro-sovereignty.
The problem with totalitarians is they think they can control every aspect of life. The problem with the Birchers is they think totalitarians can control every aspect of life.
If I subscribed to the Bircher vision of an omnipresent conspiracy pulling every string and commanding every leader in the never ending plot to (redundantly) take over the world I don’t know why I’d bother with politics at all. What would be the point?
The main thing wrong with the JBS is that the RINO community in the Republican Party considered them too extreme to be "politically incorrect" and put so much pressure on actual conservative Republicans that some prominent ones "dissed" the JBS'ers under powerful duress.
They are about as ridiculous and radical as Dr. Ron Paul's foreign policy and another congressman JBS'er got shot down by the Chi-Coms in that Korean Airlines attrocity during Reagan's Presidency. Not that that makes any difference or has any relevance to what's being discussed here. I just don't recall Reagan ordering them out of the Garden of Eden!!! (Republican Party)
The only place these far-out fringe elements hurt the conservatives is in the insidious MSM and DBMedia!!!
I dislike it when people post one article reflecting their own point of view as “proof” when asked to back up such opinions, so do a search yourself and make up your own mind. I’d suggest such search terms as “John Birch Society” and “William F. Buckley” or “Illuminati”. They’ve been charged with racism and anti-semitism by many, but to be blunt, I was so against them that I never bothered to even investigate that stuff much, because I’d personally heard enough Birchers say racist things that it didn’t matter to me much whether these were isolated cases or indicative of the group—I’d already decided my own opinion on them and didn’t need to think about that stuff where they were concerned.
Glenn Beck interests me because I want to know whether he is more attached to his Mormonism or more attached to the Constitution. Will Beck ever endorse a candidate like Romney on that alone?
If Beck admires Clouser for his right-wing principles, that’s great. It’s clear that Romney has more in common with Clouser’s high rank within the LDS church than with any constitutional ideas.
This all makes JBS’s sponsorship of “CPAC” confusing, but I suppose it’s because Ron Paul is there. And again, the fact that Paul and Romney are appearing together at an event, for a party trying to build a cohesive message and front is all the more confusing. So yes, it’ll be interesting to see what the Tea Party Convention’s implications are in light of all the CPAC madness.
Anybody can git on that screwey site and slip any mis-information they want into anything and it just lays there till some good citizen corrects it. (which is happening less and less)
Let the statements and actions of the individual stand on their merit, and similarly, let the group's current behaviour be measured by the group and not one or two members.
After all, "There is one in every bunch".
If you read the words and view the actions of even some relatively popular Republicans, and with critical thinking ask where their Constitutional authority was for their actions--even some popular actions--then you might look at history a little differently.
The Democrats, especially the New Left, are even worse.
I guess if your 'friends' stab you it doesn't bleed as much, but the Constitution hasn't really been followed since before 1860 and most even here would scream bloody blue murder if it was.
All the lip service paid the people with the 'R' after their name won't change that.
Nor will demeaning those who defend the Constitution, regardless of what others have done in the past.
The article even states that Church prophet Ezra Taft Benson was a strong supporter of the JBS. Benson served on Eisenhower’s cabinet for the full 8 years of his presidency, and was taken over the coals for his string stance against communism.
Benson’s writings attest to that as well.
I didn’t read the site, as I’m already familiar with the JBS. You can search out whatever you wish.
I think the one thing missing in this discussion is the fact that we were taught to trust in ourselves,say what you want about JBS ,but those of us raised with parents who believed,are capable,strong,independent,arms bearing patriots.
I am not a right wing conspiracy theorist but the thing my parents taught me was be prepared.Always!
The branding of people as "crackpots" and "extremists" to isolate them and their thoughts from the people is pure Alinsky, but people here willfully ignore that.
Yes well Romney may be Mormon, but his credentials are hardly “conservative.” That’s why I think it’s a valid question to ask. Will Utah go for Romney or for a conservative.
That all sounds tame compared to our current Presidents associations.
The JBS is anti communist. The press isn't. The press has a bigger voice.
whippee. He once said on a radio show blah blah
Of all the things to not like Romney for this is one of the more pathetic
Seems there are a few fringe malcontents on this board who are trying to sandbag Scott Brown's campaign in Massachusetts and and preserve Harry Reid's 60-vote super-majority.