Saturday, December 29, 2012

The Legends Supporting the American Religion



Religion and Legend

Religion (noun)

1. A set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, especially when considered as the creation of a superhuman agency or agencies, usually involving devotional and ritual observances, and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs.

In this article, I intend to explore the legends underlying the American religion.  By American religion, I mean to suggest the belief by a large segment of the population in the structures and institutions of government, and the belief that these structures and institutions are used for purposes beneficial to the people.  In other words, the religion is belief in the benevolence of the state and the goodness of the political leaders.

Legend (noun)

1. A non-historical or unverifiable story handed down by tradition from earlier times and popularly accepted as historical.

2. The body of stories of this kind, especially as they relate to a particular people, group, or clan….

There are several American legends that either support this religious belief directly, or otherwise contribute to the deification of the state and those who act through it.  Such legends, taught in the public schools and perpetuated through various mainstream media outlets – movies, books, and magazines, as well as mainstream web-sites – create a common foundation as the basis for the desired religious belief: belief in the state.

Legends are material to be moulded, and not facts to be recorded.

Many have done valuable to work toward the shattering of one or more of the key legends, thereby contributing to the loss of faith in the religion.  These efforts can only be beneficial to freedom.  The work of shattering these legends is the work of revisionist historians, although not all revisionists support the idea of shattering the religion of state.  Such historians have toiled tirelessly from the inception of each legend, yet many worked in relative obscurity.  Certainly the internet has made their work easily available to any who care to look.

Legends die hard. They survive as truth rarely does.

There are many such legends in American history.  I will explore three of these, and suggest that these three may be the most foundational due to the magnitude of awareness in and acceptance by the population at large – most importantly, due to the importance of these legends to the foundation of the American religion.  Proximity in time, I suggest, is not the key criteria – one event occurred 150 years ago, while the most recent is only ten years old.  But what these three cases hold in common is the level to which the legends have been internalized by large portions of the population.

Sometimes legends make reality, and become more useful than the facts.

A major impediment to shattering the legends is that such action runs full-force into a brick wall of “we the people.”  Too many accept the idea that “they” are the government; that the people are in charge; that the government and the country are the same; that I vote, so I have control.  As opposed to control through dictators and kings (where the self-interest of the rulers at the expense of the people was never in question), representative democracy has done a wonderful job of convincing the people that they are the rulers, choosing politicians to work on their behalf for their good.

Because they have been taught to believe that they and the government are one-and-the-same, they cannot accept that the legends are not only false but shed light on the murderous actions of government.  They cannot damn themselves.  Additionally, they cannot accept that the legends are false, because to do so will suggest that they have been dupes.

When the legends die, the dreams end; there is no more greatness.

I do not intend to refute each legend in detail in this post – I am not qualified to do so, even if I chose to.  My purpose is to suggest the three that I view as the more important legends to burst, specifically because they are so deeply ingrained and hold significant sway as basis for the religion.


Lincoln and his War

The first such legend is Lincoln’s war, commonly (and inaccurately) referred to as the Civil War.  One legend holds that Lincoln fought to free the slaves and give them equality.  While it is certainly true that the war ended slavery in the United States, this was not Lincoln’s objective: the truth is that Lincoln didn’t care one bit about the slaves, other than proposing to send them back to Africa. 

Lerone Bennett, Jr. captures the lie behind the legend in his book “Forced Into Glory: Abraham Lincoln’s White Dream.”

I was a child in whitest Mississippi, reading for my life, when I discovered that everything I had been told about Abraham Lincoln was a lie….for I discovered that I lived in an Orwellian world where scholars with all the degrees the schools could give could say in all seriousness that a separatist was an integrationist and that a White supremacist was the ultimate symbol of race relations and the American Dream.

Lincoln or somebody said once that you can’t fool all of the people all the time.  By turning a racist who wanted to deport all Blacks into a national symbol of integration and brotherhood, the Lincoln mythmakers have managed to prove Lincoln or whoever said it wrong.  This is the story of how they fooled all of the people all the time and why.

Another legend from this war was that Lincoln fought it to preserve the union.  Of course, Lincoln did not preserve the union, but instead transformed it into that which opponents of the Constitution most feared – from a confederacy of states with a limited central government to an all-powerful central government to which state government would become increasingly subservient.  From “The Founding Fathers’ Guide to the Constitution,” by Brion McClanahan:

…Who authorized them to speak in the language of We, the people, instead of We, the states? States are the characteristics and the soul of a confederation. If the states be not the agents of this compact, it must be one great, consolidated national government of the people of all the states.
Patrick Henry

We the People of the United States is a sentence that evidently shows the old foundation of the Union is destroyed, the principle of confederation excluded, and a new system of consolidated empire is set upon the ruins of the present compact between the states.
Robert Whitehill

Any assurances to the contrary offered by supporters to the Constitution were killed during this war, along with 700,000 or more victims of Lincoln’s needless aggression.

Tom DiLorenzo has done significant work regarding the myth of Lincoln.  One of his books is “Lincoln Unmasked: What You're Not Supposed to Know About Dishonest Abe.”

From the Amazon description:

What if you were told that the revered leader Abraham Lincoln was actually a political tyrant who stifled his opponents by suppressing their civil rights? What if you learned that the man so affectionately referred to as the “Great Emancipator” supported white supremacy and pledged not to interfere with slavery in the South? Would you suddenly start to question everything you thought you knew about Lincoln and his presidency?

You should.

Thomas J. DiLorenzo, who ignited a fierce debate about Lincoln’s legacy with his book The Real Lincoln, now presents a litany of stunning new revelations that explode the most enduring (and pernicious) myths about our sixteenth president. Marshaling an astonishing amount of new evidence, Lincoln Unmasked offers an alarming portrait of a political manipulator and opportunist who bears little resemblance to the heroic, stoic, and principled figure of mainstream history.

Did you know that Lincoln . . .

• did NOT save the union? In fact, Lincoln did more than any other individual to destroy the voluntary union the Founding Fathers recognized.

• did NOT want to free the slaves? Lincoln, who did not believe in equality of the races, wanted the Constitution to make slavery “irrevocable.”

• was NOT a champion of the Constitution? Contrary to his high-minded rhetoric, Lincoln repeatedly trampled on the Constitution—and even issued an arrest warrant for the chief justice of the United States!

• was NOT a great statesman? Lincoln was actually a warmonger who manipulated his own people into a civil war.

• did NOT utter many of his most admired quotations? DiLorenzo exposes a legion of statements that have been falsely attributed to Lincoln for generations—usually to enhance his image.

Lincoln is memorialized via his own temple in Washington, DC.  The design echoes a classic Greek temple, “structures built to house deity statues....”  It is ironic that the site has become an almost sacred venue for those advocating civil rights.

For those interested, I have written a review of Bennett’s book; this can be found here.


World War Two

It can be suggested that a discussion of the legend of World War Two without first exploring America’s entry into and subsequent impact upon the First World War would render such discussion incomplete.  For purposes of historical accuracy and understanding, this is certainly correct.  However, for purpose of legend – legend behind religion – this is not necessary.  Most Americans don’t make the connection, and the connection isn’t necessary to the belief of the legend.

The images of World War Two stand alone, and stand vividly in the minds of every American.  The attack on Pearl Harbor; the concentration camps; evil Japs / nips and evil Huns / krauts; Hitler as the ultimate evil; the D-Day invasion; naval battles; island-hopping marines and soldiers across the Pacific.  We have seen these images countless times – in newsreel and on the silver screen.

World War Two stands out for most Americans as the Good War, the one case where there can be no doubt that America was in the right: subject to an unprovoked attack; fighting on the side of freedom and against tyranny – the tyranny of the Nazis and Hitler, and the tyranny of the Japan and Hirohito; where the two bombs were dropped, thus avoiding the need for a direct invasion of Japan and thereby saving a million American lives while bringing the war to a sooner end.

All myths.  All legends.  Even supporters of Roosevelt admit that he did all he could to enter the war – first by attempting to provoke Germany, then later Japan, into attacking the United States – while all the while telling the American people that he was doing all he could to stay out of the war.  One very good book in this regard is “The Pearl Harbor Myth: Rethinking the Unthinkable,” by George Victor (a supporter of Roosevelt’s actions):

Events are poorly explained by making assumptions that crucial acts by competent, conscientious leaders were capricious, careless, or negligent. And U.S. leaders who figured in the Pearl Harbor disaster were highly competent and conscientious.

After Roosevelt stationed the fleet at Pearl Harbor, Commander McCollum wrote a memo for him, recommending its use as a lure. Roosevelt implemented the recommendation. Admiral Richardson concluded the administration use of the fleet endangered it gravely, and he argued the point over and over with his superiors. When he took measures to protect his fleet, Roosevelt relieved him. Stark then kept Kimmel uninformed of Japan’s plans to attack it at Pearl Harbor. And Marshall kept Short uninformed.

To most Americans, manipulating one’s nation into war is something done by foreign tyrants – not our own leaders. Since 1942 U.S. history has been distorted by the idea that presidents simply do not do what Roosevelt’s enemies said he did.

As to fighting against tyranny, this seems hardly plausible given that the Americans sided with Stalin, who at the beginning of the war had far more blood on his hands than did Hitler.  From Herbert Hoover’s “Freedom Betrayed”:

No longer was the world conflict an unambiguous struggle “between tyranny and freedom….The alliance of the British with the Russians against Germany destroyed “that illusion.”

“Western civilization has consecrated itself to making the world safe for Stalin.”

Freedom Betrayed is a significant volume by Hoover, examining the foreign policy of Roosevelt (and then Truman) from the period 1933 through the end of the war.  It is a remarkable account, not because he breaks any significant new ground (at least not by the time it was published, fifty years after his death), but because he was a former president.  I am aware of no other volume of comparable significance where one president so directly criticizes the foreign policy of another – especially one as revered as FDR.  For example, no president has written a comparable, critical account of Lincoln.

Meanwhile, the legend of the atomic bomb lives on, unquestioned in the mind of the general public.  Here I suggest “The Decision to Use the Atomic Bomb,” by Gar Alperovitz. He presents convincing evidence that the bombs were unnecessary toward the objective of ending the war sooner (in fact, delaying the end of the war); that the bombs did not save Americans from an invasion of Japan – no invasion was necessary in any case.

This view is not merely hindsight, fifty years after the fact.  This was certainly the view of key military leaders at the time:


“It is my opinion that the use of this barbarous weapon at Hiroshima and Nagasaki was of no material assistance in our war against Japan. The Japanese were already defeated and ready to surrender because of the effective sea blockade and the successful bombing with conventional weapons... My own feeling was that in being the first to use it, we had adopted an ethical standard common to the barbarians of the Dark Ages. I was not taught to make wars in that fashion, and that wars cannot be won by destroying women and children.”


“Secretary of War Stimson, visiting my headquarters in Germany, informed me that our government was preparing to drop an atomic bomb on Japan. I was one of those who felt that there were a number of cogent reasons to question the wisdom of such an act. ...the Secretary, upon giving me the news of the successful bomb test in New Mexico, and of the plan for using it, asked for my reaction, apparently expecting a vigorous assent.

“During his recitation of the relevant facts, I had been conscious of a feeling of depression and so I voiced to him my grave misgivings, first on the basis of my belief that Japan was already defeated and that dropping the bomb was completely unnecessary, and secondly because I thought that our country should avoid shocking world opinion by the use of a weapon whose employment was, I thought, no longer mandatory as a measure to save American lives. It was my belief that Japan was, at that very moment, seeking some way to surrender with a minimum loss of 'face'. The Secretary was deeply perturbed by my attitude...”

Alperovitz also documents the significant myth-making machine activated after the war regarding the atomic bombings.

I have written numerous articles regarding Hoover’s work.  I have also written reviews on the books by Victor (regarding Pearl Harbor) and Alperovitz (regarding the atomic bomb).  Additionally, I have covered other aspects of this war.  All can be found via the search engine on this site, for those interested.

September 11

This event is terribly important as it has ushered in a change to the country no less drastic than that brought on by Lincoln’s victory over the southern states.  It is also an instant legend – here the images are even more vivid and real than those from the Second World War – and this without the overt help of Hollywood.

The revisionist history here is not nearly as well developed.  If for no other reason, this can be attributed to time – we stand only ten years removed from the event.  I am not aware of any credible and verifiable descriptions of the truth of what happened that day; however, there are certainly many credible questions about the official explanation – these questions remain unanswered.  An internet search for “September 11” + questions returned 2 million hits.  A search through these will serve better than any incomplete list I could provide.

A starting point could be “Architects and Engineers for 9/11Truth.” 

Architects & Engineers for 9/11 Truth (AE911Truth) is a non-profit corporation. We are a non-partisan association of architects, engineers and affiliates dedicated to exposing the falsehoods and to revealing truths about the “collapses” of the 3 World Trade Center high-rises on September 11, 2001.

We call upon Congress for a truly independent investigation with subpoena power. We believe that there is sufficient evidence to conclude that three World Trade Center buildings #1 (North Tower), #2 (South Tower), and #7 (the 47-story high-rise across Vesey St.) were destroyed not by jet impact and fires but by controlled demolition with explosives.



More than 1,750 architects and engineers have publicly signed the following petition:

Please Take Notice That:

On Behalf of the People of the United States of America, the undersigned Architects & Engineers for 9/11 Truth and affiliates hereby petition for, and demand, a truly independent investigation with subpoena power in order to uncover the full truth surrounding the events of 9/11/01 – specifically the collapse of the World Trade Center Towers and Building 7. We believe there is sufficient doubt about the official story to justify re-opening the 9/11 investigation. The new investigation must include a full inquiry into the possible use of explosives that might have been the actual cause of the destruction of the World Trade Center Twin Towers and Building 7.

Sincerely,

The Undersigned

I suggest this not because I know it to be more credible than any other effort – I have no reason to believe this one way or another. However, I find it credible if for no other reason than the fact that almost two-thousand (inherently) well-educated architects and engineers have decided to put their names and reputations on the line firmly questioning the official story of the legend.

While we don’t know the truth about what happened, we do know for certain that members of the official government-appointed commission have doubts about the story they were told by various government officials:

Months after the commission had officially issued its report and ceased its functions, Chairman Kean and other commissioners toured the country to draw attention to the recommendations of the commission for reducing the terror risk, claiming that some of their recommendations were being ignored. Co-chairs Kean and Hamilton wrote a book about the constraints they faced as commissioners titled Without Precedent: The Inside Story of the 9/11 Commission.

The book was released on August 15, 2006 and chronicles the work of Kean (Commission Chairman) and Hamilton (Commission Vice-Chairman) of the 9/11 Commission. In the book, Kean and Hamilton charge that the 9/11 Commission was "set up to fail," and write that the commission was so frustrated with repeated misstatements by officials from The Pentagon and the Federal Aviation Administration during the investigation that it considered a separate investigation into possible obstruction of justice by Pentagon and FAA officials.

John Farmer, Jr., senior counsel to the Commission stated that the Commission "discovered that...what government and military officials had told Congress, the Commission, the media, and the public about who knew what when — was almost entirely, and inexplicably, untrue." Farmer continues: "At some level of the government, at some point in time … there was a decision not to tell the truth about what happened...The (NORAD) tapes told a radically different story from what had been told to us and the public."[22] Thomas Kean, the head of the 9/11 Commission, concurred: "We to this day don’t know why NORAD told us what they told us, it was just so far from the truth."

Summary

I have selected three of the major legends underlying the American Religion.  I can think of others, but to my mind they do not affect the emotion and psyche of the average American as these three do.  Two of the three have already been exposed with well-documented research.  One is still awaiting such treatment – not due to a lack of effort on the part of revisionists, but perhaps because time has not yet allowed the erosion of the secrecy.

Any efforts to broaden awareness of the fallacies behind these legends can only serve to undermine the religion, and therefore ultimately help de-legitimize the state. 

As with all attacks on faith, the faithful can and do respond with aggression and abuse.  But time and effort opens more eyes.  Once the scales are lifted, the sighted do not voluntarily return to blindness.

31 comments:

  1. Excellent article!

    When I try to think of the fourth legend or myth, I conjure up the all-wise Founding Fathers and how they wisely constructed the Constitution to protect our freedoms. The reality of the situation being more closely related to a coup.

    Keep up fine work, BM.

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  2. I think basing your argument in a false premise that is insulting and demeaning to your readers is an effective way to sway them to your point of view. Of course, it's also very helpful to your cause if you present no workable solutions while you're haranguing them.

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    1. 1) What is the false premise?
      2) If the readers feel insulted or demeaned, how is this "an effective way to sway them to [my] point of view"?
      3) What is "my cause"?
      4) Define a "workable solution."
      5) On what basis are you confident to suggest I present no workable solutions?
      6) If any readers here feel harangued, why do you believe they remain readers here?
      7) In the meantime, what is your workable solution while you are haranguing me?

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    2. 1)False premise: That government is practiced and worshiped as a religion.

      2)It's not an effective way.

      3)Promoting the notion that Government is a superhuman being and the root of all things evil, which would suggest that you might hold to the notion that having no government would lead to peaceful coexistence for all mankind.

      4)Capable of being put into effective operation; practicable or feasible.

      5)I read your thesis.

      6)They probably won't.

      7)I have no workable solutions for problems generated by false premises that are supported by circular reasoning.

      If you're capable of seeing the wrong way people are living, then it would stand to reason that you would have some concept of the right way. So what, do you believe, is the right way for people to live?

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    3. 1) Religion (noun)

      A set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, especially when considered as the creation of a superhuman agency or agencies, usually involving devotional and ritual observances, and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs.

      Superhuman agency: Many believe the government capable of providing food, clothing, housing, education, safety, and many other basic necessities of life at no cost and requiring no effort. If this is not a belief in the superhuman, what is?

      Devotional and ritual observances: The Pledge of Allegiance; the singing of the Star Spangled Banner or God Bless America at every sporting event; the worship of symbols of the government – military flyovers, monuments, flags, images carved in stone. Those are just a few off the top of my head.

      Containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs: theft is legitimate as long as the government does it on my behalf.

      Now, where is the false premise?

      2) Then you wrote it incorrectly the first time.

      3) You make three incorrect assumptions in one point: 1) Promoting the notion that Government is a superhuman being: I don’t promote this, but many believe it and act on their belief; 2) government is the root of all things evil: government, especially as it has been practiced in the last 100 years, is the root of only 99% of the evil, but not all; 3) you might hold to the notion that having no government would lead to peaceful coexistence for all mankind: I do believe in government – primarily self-government based on culture and community. What I do not believe is that there will be “peaceful coexistence for all mankind” under any scenario, at least not until Christ returns.

      4) A very subjective statement. As heaven on earth is not an option – and therefore perfection is not an option – I suggest there are a few “workable solutions,” although I lean toward one model.

      5) I have written over three hundred posts on this blog, many addressing this issue. Do you suggest I only have one post, and add to it every time I choose to write about something new?

      6) But if readers won’t stay, why do you state this is helpful to my cause (which you have incorrectly stated in any case)? Is it my cause to write and NOT have readers stay?

      7) The right way for people to live? Do not initiate force. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you (or, do NOT do unto others what you would NOT done unto you). Do what you say.

      Every major religion has some version of these as basic tenets. That should cover at least 6 billion of the 7 billion people on earth; if their education focused on these, significant improvement would be made. Too bad they are taught to worship the state instead.

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    4. That you believe it is true does not make it true.

      Biased assumptions based in anecdotal interpretations of traditions, which can be easily countered by anecdotal evidence of the very real volume of guns and ammo being sold to those same people that you claim are worshiping government, they appear to be prepping to counter the government's anti-liberty activities.

      I think most people actually despise our fascist government but love the ideals (NAP) that the flag and the U.S.A. are supposed to represent.

      "Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed."

      I'm inclined to believe that the people's tolerance of the government is drawing to an end.

      If this particular blog is indicative of your others, I probably won't be reading them.

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    5. Carl, If he, or I for that matter, "believe it's true" then it IS true if only just for us. And if others faithfully and religiously believe the governments lies and propaganda, their "truth", how is that any different than a "religion"? To say that people despise the government yet love its symbols is talking out of both sides of ones mouth but admitting people are practicing hypocrites.

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    6. MoT, thank you for your various comments today.

      I have been thinking about Carl's last comment, and your post here has given me a reason to revisit this thread.

      "...real volume of guns and ammo being sold to those same people that you claim are worshiping government..."

      I never said it was the same people. I never said which people it was. It is a big country, and not all 300 million have the exact same viewpoint.

      "I think most people actually despise our fascist government but love the ideals (NAP) that the flag and the U.S.A. are supposed to represent."

      If this was true, Ron Paul would be president. It isn't true.

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    7. Ron Paul isn't president because Ron Paul didn't want to be president. They are not the "government's symbols", they belong to the people as symbols of liberty, which cannot be found through any government.

      So, those who believe that government is a religion are following a cult religion, outside the mainstream?

      The whole dead end, circular reasoning of calling government a "religion" is simple minded nattering, as if you stopped believing in it, like in god or Santa Clause, government will simply disappear.

      It's the anti-solution, you believe you have it all figured out, tied up in a nice little package; "government is a religion". There, done, I have my answer, I don't have to think about it anymore and I'll just go around repeating the mantra "government is a religion" and bring all productive discussion on the subject to a close.

      And I'm sure the government appreciates your door slamming diligence in halting subversive talk.

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    8. “Ron Paul isn't president because Ron Paul didn't want to be president.”

      No, Ron Paul is not president because not enough people voted for him to be president.

      “They are not the "government's symbols", they belong to the people as symbols of liberty, which cannot be found through any government.”

      Because the people embrace them does not make them any less symbols of government as religion. Take a look at the link provided by Bryce January 2, 2013 10:29 AM in this comment thread.

      “So, those who believe that government is a religion are following a cult religion, outside the mainstream?”

      No, I believe the state as it exists today is worshipped as the mainstream religion, although most followers of this religion likely do not realize that this is, in fact, their god.

      “The whole dead end, circular reasoning of calling government a "religion" is simple minded nattering, as if you stopped believing in it, like in god or Santa Clause, government will simply disappear.”

      I think if enough people stopped believing in government as savior, the nature of government would drastically change. Who said anything about government disappearing?

      “It's the anti-solution, you believe you have it all figured out, tied up in a nice little package; "government is a religion". There, done, I have my answer, I don't have to think about it anymore and I'll just go around repeating the mantra "government is a religion" and bring all productive discussion on the subject to a close.”

      Again, dear Carl, I have written over 300 posts. You remain focused on assuming that this one contains all of my thinking on the subject.

      But I will offer: bring something productive to the table. Your tag line is “America's #1 Enemy and Direct threat to our Lives, Liberty, Property and Future is the United States Centralized Fascist Government.” What exactly do you mean by this and what do you propose should be done about it?

      “And I'm sure the government appreciates your door slamming diligence in halting subversive talk.”

      On what subversive talk have I slammed the door? I have posted every one of your comments, as I have for every comment on this thread. I have no more power than this. Do you think I control CNN or MSNBC?


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    9. So you've written over 300 posts, all culminating in the simple minded, false premise expressed in this one pat answer "government is a religion".

      Of course, your essay isn't the first I've read with that drivel as its theme, and it's been making the rounds on the forums where people are discussing our political environment, some self proclaimed anarchist will inevitably regurgitate that vacuous "government is a religion" mime, as if they're some type of thoughtfully contemplated words of wisdom, but in point of fact, they're nothing more than an excuse to do nothing. What do you think happens to the discussion when that "government is a religion" grenade is tossed into the arena? It stops, effectively slamming the door on further discussion.

      It Is Not A Productive Line Of Rational. It's dead-end thinking.

      As I've stated, your premise is wrong, government is not a religion, it's just the facilitator. The religion is the IDEOLOGY driving the government, which is the primary reason I despise all unthinking ideologues, regardless of the title they claim, Republicans, Democrats, Libertarians, Anarchists, Environmentalists or Globalists, whatever. They're all nothing more than franchised regurgitators.

      You want to know what I think should be done to fix government? Post this and I'll let you know.

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    10. “As I've stated, your premise is wrong, government is not a religion, it's just the facilitator. The religion is the IDEOLOGY driving the government…What do you think happens to the discussion when that "government is a religion" grenade is tossed into the arena? It stops, effectively slamming the door on further discussion.”

      Carl, not once in my post or in the comments did I state that government was the religion. I stated that there was an American religion, as follows:

      In this article, I intend to explore the legends underlying the American religion. By American religion, I mean to suggest the belief by a large segment of the population in the structures and institutions of government, and the belief that these structures and institutions are used for purposes beneficial to the people. In other words, the religion is belief in the benevolence of the state and the goodness of the political leaders.

      You are the one who introduced the concept of “government as religion.” You introduced this strawman. Introducing a strawman is an effective way of tossing a grenade into the arena, effectively slamming the door on further discussion. You have been quite effective.

      You have made four, in some cases lengthy, posts to this thread. You have had every opportunity to engage in the conversation, and I have done nothing to slam you. Yet you offer not one comment toward what can be done to “fix” government. Even now, you hold out, perhaps expecting that still I will not allow your comments, with this:

      “You want to know what I think should be done to fix government? Post this and I'll let you know.”

      I am all eyes.

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    11. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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    12. There are three times where I have either not published a comment, or deleted a comment. The first time was a mistake, where I deleted several comments by accident. The second time was a private note to me, where it wasn't proper to post it.

      The third time was Carl's here. It was vulgar and hostile.

      If he chooses to reply in a civilized manner, I will publish his comments.

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    13. I'm sad that the 'Carl' commentor was unable to maintain civility - as I read thru the above daisy-chain it became clear that he was degenerating into invective. Yo, Carl, the reason that this blog trumps your comments is that you ran out of depth and grounded your hull. This blog holds readers, your shallow critique does not.

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  3. Here is another little factoid which counters the legend that the US government was isolationist prior to Pearl Harbor.

    In the link below (official US history) it talks about advanced bases built by the US in Great Britain prior to Pearl Harbor. These bases were hidden from the public in the Lend Lease program to Britain but were in fact for the US military. There were a total of 6 bases being built, two for US destroyers, two for US aircraft and two for US submarines. One submarine base was to be located in British owned Gibraltar, while the other sub base, along with the two destroyer and two airbases were located in Northern Ireland and Scotland.

    Along with the many other examples of US being involved in WW2 prior to Pearl Harbor this shows that when someone talks about isolationist US prior to Dec 7 they actually mean that any status below outright declared war is isolationist since that is the real situation on Dec 6 1941. You can be shooting at one combatant in a war in support of another combatant, you can have full staff war planning with combatants, you can supply combatants with massive amounts of war material for free, you can be building military bases in countries at war, etc, and that is isolationists according to official history

    http://www.history.navy.mil/library/online/adminhist22_logisticsadvancebases.htm

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    1. Of course little is made of the fact that the American "empire" was already stationed in the Phillipines, Hawaii (obviously not a state at that time) and elsewhere. Those troops in Bataan, Midway and Pearl just didn't fall out of the sky and magically appear did they? This news about potential bases being prepared in Britain are a revelation if accurate. Which begs the question that with all the "advanced" base building going on presently just how long before WW3 is around the corner?

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    2. DJF, I always appreciate the information and links you provide. Thank you.

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  4. Great article. I recently came to the conclusion that most Americans do in fact worship the state above whatever else they claim to worship, be it Jesus Christ, science, or anything else.

    Anyway, I saw this article on Lew Rockwell, and now that I've read a couple more of your articles, I'll be reading you regularly.

    If you've never seen "Blood Sacrifice and the Nation: Revisiting Civil Religion" you should give it a read. http://www.readability.com/articles/3npyzmad It's not a Libertarian paper per se, but it does make an interesting case for "Our government is our religion."

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    1. Bryce, thank you for the comments and the link. The authors explained so well that which I stumbled to convey.

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  5. Excellent essay. Thank you.
    Professor David Ray Griffin has written several very well researched, documented and presented books on 9-11. I highly recommend his work.

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    1. Thank you for the kind words. I will look into these books. Is there one in particular you would suggest as a good place to start?

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    2. Look over his many books on 9-11 and choose the one that interests you the most. You can't go wrong. Interestingly, as your article is about religion, he is a retired professor of theology. He is also an excellent speaker and many of his lectures on 9-11 are available on YouTube. Peace.

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  6. Very odd, as I was thinking about this topic today. I know that many libertarians face an uphill battle in the war for minds, due to the religion of the State. I thought about how difficult it is to speak with someone of faith or a different faith concerning issues with which their faith may not espouse. Needless to say, it is very difficult. Think about the vicious attacks from the evangelical right anytime one would bring up the cognitive dissonance associated with their pro-war, pro-death penalty, and... pro-life views. The whole situation makes me anti-religion. (Not necessarily anti-God, mind you.)

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    1. "The whole situation makes me anti-religion. (Not necessarily anti-God, mind you.)"

      Yes, I understand. Many look at the organized church and the crusades of the middle-ages and wonder at the barbarity, without seeing the reflection on our times.

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  7. great article, good arguments. and i agree, you only need to look at the video footage (and cringe) at the worshippers at obama's re-election speech to see it.

    there is AMPLE evidence 9/11 didn't occur the way they said it did though. i guess as time goes by, official docs and whistleblowers will come forward.

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  8. Thank's for a fine SunDay read,-Great stuff !

    Bren , Ireland.

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