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By James V. Ferguson, MD (contributor to the Tennessee Conservative) –
As I begin this essay on my seventy-first birthday, I wonder, “What happened?” It doesn’t seem so long ago that I retired from traditional medical practice, my daughters were getting married or grand kids were being born. Time flies.
Perhaps my axiom is true: “In your mind’s eye you think of yourself as one generation less than your actual age.” While that perception may be valid, the mirror tells a different story and my aging body often agrees with the mirror.
Although it’s been a good run, I’m not done yet. I thank God each morning when I awaken and get to “reboot” the mainframe atop my shoulders for another day of life. Most days I’m thankful, even if the niggling aches of aging seek to distract me from the wonder and majesty of life and Creation. I grow peonies (my grandmother called them “pie-knees”). These beautiful springtime flowers will not open without ants. As I was swatting one of those necessary tiny creatures from the flower arrangement on the counter, I marveled at the intricacy and complexity of even a small and common place lifeform.
As a writer of science fiction, I imagine the universe to be full of life, otherwise what a waste of space! In Epiphany, the first novel of my Stellar Trilogy, Christ appears to the characters on a distant planet as he did to us two millennia ago. I believe God isolates and protects life on planets circling distant stars until such time as we develop the maturity to avoid screwing up someone else’s neighborhood. This is called “the prime directive” in the Star Trek lore.
So what happened in America? How did things become such a mess? As an internist I often know what happened, sometimes I understand how illness developed, but the real question is why something transpired. History is a great teacher to those who will listen, but is often ignored in our postmodern world.
The story of our mess began more than hundred years ago in Russia. Biden and the Democrats should pay attention because this story is real rather than the Russian and Ukrainian collusion hoaxes manufactured by Hillary Clinton and the deep state, and promoted by swampy Republicans and the corrupt media.
In the 1860s, while we were fighting the Civil War, Karl Marx published Das Kapital outlining the communist perspective of class warfare between the capitalists (owners) and the proletariat (workers). The middle class was contemptuously labeled the bourgeoisie. The Industrial Revolution of the late 19th century led to abuses by the so-called “robber barons,” like Vanderbilt, Carnegie and others, which led to sympathy for the poor and working class. In Russia the masses rose up in the Bolshevik Revolution in 1917. Civil war ensued between Tsarist forces (white) and communist forces (red) as depicted in the movie Doctor Zhivago. Lenin and the communists won.
Fast forward to the 1930s with the rising influence of Nazis in Germany, which opposed communism, Jews and a host of “non Arian” others. A number of communist academics, theoreticians and philosophers were at the University of Frankfurt. They found Germany increasingly dangerous so Herbert Marcuse and others fled to America and joined the faculty of Columbia University in New York. There they established the Frankfurt School perspective of “cultural Marxism.” They soon spread their neo-Marxist Critical Theory to Princeton, Harvard and Berkeley.
There are two principal ways to transform a society. Obama promised a “fundamental transformation of American society.” One path is through violent revolution as happened in Russia and later China with Mao Zedong. The other route was the “long march through the institutions,” as articulated by Antonio Gramsci of the Italian Communist Party. Cultural Marxism and the “gradual process of radicalization of cultural institutions” was adopted by the Frankfurt School refugees. Their teaching was considered “avant-garde” and had a “multiplier effect in other universities and teachers’ colleges in the 1950s and 60s.”
Fast forward to today and we see the effects of Marcuse’s Cultural Marxism on K-12 education and universities, renunciation of Judeo-Christian absolutes, Marxist BLM with racial warfare and “wokeness,” Antifa (shock troops of the left), liberal media, corrupted government institutions and Big Tech oligarchs opposed to free speech.
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If you doubt my analysis, consider the Cloward-Piven strategy. In 1966 Columbia professors Richard Cloward and Frances Fox Piven advocated a policy of increasing government, ostensibly to feed the poor. Since Jean Jacque Rousseau of the 18th century, elitists have promised utopia by feeding and educating the masses. Though I support such noble goals, they have never worked. Interestingly, the word utopia, coined by Sir Thomas More in 1516, translates as “nowhere.”
Predictably, the Cloward-Piven strategy has fostered increasing and unrealistic demands for public services. The system is now collapsing and will accomplish the ulterior motive of transforming America’s capitalist system and produce another failed socialist “utopia.”
Obama gave Cloward and Piven awards in a Rose Garden ceremony.
What good is knowing about what is happening if you are unable to do anything about the destruction? As a student of history, I have tried to imagine what others have felt as conquering armies rampage or injustice is institutionalized. I often feel frustrated and angry as I watch the disassembly of our country.
A friend asked me, “What will happen?” I told him I don’t know, but history teaches that internal rot leads to societal collapse or violent revolution. We may be spared because we have a mechanism of altering a destructive course. Voting is crucial to avoid the inevitable collapse which awaits us. We must show up and tell the progressive Democrat socialists, “NO!” But this cannot be done with a 6% voter turnout as we had for the recent Knox County primary elections. And we must stop voter fraud as depicted in the D’Souza documentary 2000 Mules.
We are fortunate to live in the best area of the best state and have good Congressional representation. But, Senators Blackburn, Haggerty and Congressman Burchett, don’t talk to me about reaching across the aisle. Democrats must be defeated.
Despite Covid, two years ago we had peace and prosperity and respect in the world. It can be ours again.
Adapted from an article that recently appeared in the Knoxville Focus. Printed here by permission from the Author.
About the Author: Jim is a native of Knoxville, practicing Internal Medicine for more than 40 years, prior to retiring in 2020. Along with learning to become a “gentleman farmer,” he has written essays for the conservative weekly Knoxville Focus since 2007.