Image by Mikhanbd
When I first came to America 20 years ago and started to pick up on the colloquialisms of the American corporate language, the expression I found most endearing was “motherhood and apple pie”. In my mind it was the perfect simile for something that is so utterly non-controversial, so completely loved and accepted by all that no further elaboration was necessary. Indeed, who doesn’t love mothers and apple pies?
Well, 20 years later it seems that one of the two major political parties in America, the Democratic Party and its hardcore voter base of perhaps 30% of Americans not only do not like motherhood and apple pie, they HATE them with a burning passion. They see in motherhood the negation of feminism, one of their foundational ideologies, and as to apple pie, well, as a metaphor for something that is made with love by the family matriarch, it represents the totality of everything these people find vile and regressive.
It is self-evident that no society, no country can exist without a foundational set of beliefs that are axiomatic, require no elaboration or explanation, and can be summed up in one sentence. For Israel, this is the first line in Israel’s foundational document, the Declaration of Independence. This document, drafted almost exactly seven decades ago, starts with a simple statement: “In the Land of Israel arose the Jewish People”. This statement contains everything that the vast majority of Israeli (and Diaspora) Jews believe and everything that those who wish Israel harm deny. This partial sentence contains in itself the foundational charter of the Israeli State and the Israeli society. It states that there is no such thing as “Palestine”, only “Eretz Israel”, the Land of Israel, and that it was here and nowhere else that the Jewish people first developed. That this is the place for which the Jews fought and in which they forged, with their blood and tears their eternal national identity.
This statement ties every Jew, anywhere in the world to the Land of Israel and grants him or her the unalienable right to citizenship in the State of Israel, the only Jewish State. It is not at all coincidental that Israel’s many enemies deny the premise of this statement in its entirety; they deny that the strip of land between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea has anything to do with Israel or the Jews and they deny the very existence of Jews as a people, “granting” them only the status of a religious minority. But Israel will never succumb to its external enemies; as long as Israel maintains a Jewish majority and as long as the vast majority of Israeli Jews know in their bones that the Declaration of Independence got it absolutely right, Israel will remain invincible.
For a full millennium, Russian identity rested on an axiomatic statement of its own: “vera pravoslavnaya, vlast’ samoderzhavnaya”, Orthodox faith, absolute monarchy. This unbreakable bond, in fact a covenant, between the Russian people, the Russian Orthodox Christian Church, and their divinely ordained and anointed ruler, the Czar, sustained the Russian polity through good times and bad and made it into one of the great powers in the world militarily, geopolitically, and most importantly culturally. The vagaries of the industrial revolution posed a challenge to this foundation; a challenge that proved to be successful when, a hundred years ago, the Russian Empire fell to a coup d’état led by a group of violent, power-hungry stateless actors known as Bolsheviks. A century later, Russia is in complete shambles. Having no foundational philosophy that even a plurality, let alone a majority of Russians can agree on, it has neither the rule of law, nor advanced culture, nor even geopolitical significance. It is a bigger version of Iran, a country rich in rapidly depreciating resources, armed with a nuclear arsenal that it can never use and cannot afford. It is a country in which an elderly woman who survived WWII freezes to death when her electricity is cut off for an unpaid bill of $1.50. A country where a young school girl is thrown out of a bus into zero degree weather because she cannot afford the bus fare. A country where private debt collectors break the knees of citizens who cannot pay their mortgages.
America is founded on a more eloquent version of motherhood and apple pie. It is founded on the belief that “all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed”. This statement is described as “self-evident”, meaning axiomatic, requiring no proof. It assumes the existence of a Creator from whom all rights derive, meaning that such rights cannot be removed by any man. However, the statement upon which America is founded allows for the fact that these rights are granted by the Creator, but are not secured by him; that the enjoyment of these rights is and always will be under a powerful assault and that it is thus necessary to provide for a common defense against this assault via a pooling of resources under unified command. i.e. a government, thus making the government a necessary evil, something to be viewed with extreme caution and prejudice.
This view of government as something entirely dangerous, needed only because of the corruption of the world that is full of bad actors hell-bent on taking away our unalienable rights, rests on the fact that the government, by consent of the governed, is endowed with God-like powers. Government can and often does, take away our unalienable rights. It can take away our property via taxation, punitive fines, or for the common good via laws of eminent domain. It can take away our liberty, confining us to prisons, and it can even take away our lives. In monarchies, these God-like powers are bestowed on divinely ordained Kings, who exercise them on Earth on behalf of God himself. In republics, these powers belong to the people, who for reasons of practicality bestow them on their elective representatives.
In the exercise of its one and only legitimate function of “securing” our rights, the government establishes certain institutions and agencies. These agencies include the military, whose function it is to secure our rights from foreign malefactors, the police, whose function it is to protect our rights from criminals and people of low moral character, and agencies such as the IRS whose job it is to collect the funds needed these agencies. But there is another, less tangible, but no less important aspect of securing our rights; making sure that the belief in and the understanding of our foundational documents, the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and the Declaration of Independence is passed on from one generation to the next. This task is by far the most difficult, because it least yields itself to the heavy handed methods of government bureaucracies. Hence it has long been the tradition to leave these matters to the twin institutions of family and church, with gentle encouragement by the government. This encouragement may take the form of tax breaks for families with children and for places of worship and other “soft” policies designed to encourage people’s participation in spiritual endeavors and in forming stable families that are the necessary requirement for raising the next generations of citizens who are informed stakeholders in their society.
Traditionally, both mainstream American parties bought into America’s foundational ideology, differing only on how it may be best implemented in an increasingly turbulent world. That is no longer the case. Today, only one party, the Republicans, still subscribe to the notion that all men have individual rights that are bestowed on them by an all-powerful Creator and that the church and the family are the only institutions that can guarantee the continuation of a just society that is based on these principles. Only the Republicans believe that the government, if left unchecked, is a source of danger, that its only function is securing the individual rights of the citizens, and that the consent of the governed, carefully balancing the rights of the majority and the minority, the cities and the hinterland, is essential for granting the government the awesome power to abridge our rights and freedoms.
The positions of today’s Democratic Party were succinctly expressed by one of its spokespersons, Joy Reid, who in response to President Trump’s passionate defense of American foundational values in the State of the Union address, tweeted as follows: “Church … family … police … military … the national anthem … Trump trying to call on all the tropes of 1950s-era nationalism. The goal of this speech appears to be to force the normalization of Trump on the terms of the bygone era his supporters are nostalgic for.”
This tweet negates, one by one, the foundational values upon which America is built. Without church and family it is not possible to communicate from one generation to the next the glorious story that is America. The removal of support for the military and the police ensures that we are left defenseless against those, at home and abroad, who would take away those rights that were granted to us by our Creator. The National Anthem, is simply a symbol of the American story, a story of hard-won freedom, a freedom for which we owe an eternal debt to those who fought and died to defend it. The date in Ms. Reid’s tweet, her calling out the 1950’s as the era for which Trump’s supporters are nostalgic, is also quite meaningful. The 1950’s, the Eisenhower era, was the last decade in which the Democratic Party was still an American Party. It was the last time America still maintained a resemblance to the society envisioned by the Founding Fathers. Recalling that time of unparalleled prosperity, a time in which America was by far the most powerful country on the face of the Earth as a time of darkness, shows how far removed Ms. Reid and her bosses and supporters are removed from America’s foundational principles.
In summary, it is helpful to recall that the first things that the Bolsheviks had done when they took control of Russia, were the abolishment of the military, the police, the church, the family, and the national anthem. They did not replace these things, at least not until much later. They literally ABOSLISHED them. The Bolsheviks hated the Church precisely because it taught that there is a higher authority than the government. In a move resembling the current war on statuary in America, they razed to the ground tens of thousands of churches and monasteries. In a time of extreme shortage of buildings for private and government use, they did not convert the churches and monasteries to other uses – they razed them, destroying priceless Russian artistic and cultural heritage that can never be replaced. The Bolsheviks murdered, often by torture and starvation, nearly all members of the Russian clergy. They promoted the disintegration of the Russian family by turning children against their parents, encouraging them to spy on their families. They instituted a culture of sexual promiscuity, making it the communist duty of women to dispense sexual services to all who requested them and by providing abortion on demand. The poison fruits of that tree are still very much felt in Russia with its negative birth rates and rampant prostitution.
Image by Laima Gūtmane (simka…
The Bolsheviks did not fight crime – they encouraged it. In one of their first acts in power, they opened the prison doors and set free nearly all of Russia’s criminals. The rational was that these criminals did nothing wrong by stealing the property of others because private property itself was a bourgeois concept that had no place in a just society. The ensuing mayhem and lawlessness in the streets of Russian cities was a desirable effect, keeping the population at large in a state of constant confusion and instability, making it impossible for the people to pay attention to the ruling Bolsheviks breaking every single promise they had made in their pre-revolutionary speeches.
The Bolsheviks abolished the military and the anthem as symbols of national identity because they viewed the concept of national identity as inherently evil. They, like the American Democrats of today, envisioned a borderless world, a world in which class rather than national, religious, or ethnic identity defined one’s natural spiritual domain. It was only when the inevitable failure of their ideology and their early actions on its behalf led to the USSR being threatened and nearly overwhelmed by self-inflicted starvation, a disastrous war with tiny Finland that immense Russia lost, and finally the surprise attack by Germany, that the Bolshevik ideological rule gave rise to the prototypical tyranny of Stalin followed by the stagnation and finally collapse of the post-Stalin USSR. But the damage was done. A chain once broken cannot be mended. Russia is doomed.
America is fighting for its very existence. American Bolsheviks are much more sophisticated and much better funded than their Russian counterparts. Just as the Russian Bolsheviks were supported and funded by Russia’s enemies such as Great Britain and Germany, so are their American followers supported by America’s enemies in Russia, China, and even in the European Union. In a modern-world twist, the biggest source of support for the American Bolshevik Party previously known as the Democratic Party comes from stateless techno-oligarchs who see in it an instrument of taking unlimited political power in the United States. Power that they have neither the skills nor the desire to gain by following constitutional procedure.
Image by Ted Eytan
Let us hope that the American people yet have the strength to see through the constant barrage of demagoguery that they are being subjected to by the organs of the Bolshevik party and rise up in the defense of their churches, their families, their military, their police, and their national anthem.