Angry mobs of demonstrators who demand that government give them what they want often hold signs reading, “This is what democracy looks like.” They’re right — and wrong
by Fr. James Thornton
(Book Review)-Mobocracy: The Cultural & Political War to Destroy Our Republic Under God, by Jake Jacobs, Ph.D., Abbotsford, Wis.: Life Sentence Publishing, 2012, 296 pages, hardcover.
In the earliest days of our country’s existence as an independent nation, our Founding Fathers endeavored to establish a constitutional republic and to eschew the pitfalls of democracy, a form of government they detested and feared. For example, John Adams wrote, “Democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There never was a democracy yet that did not commit suicide.” Thomas Jefferson said that “democracy is nothing more than mob rule, where 51% of the people may take away the rights of the other 49%.” And, Benjamin Franklin spoke of democracy as “two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch.”
The rule of law (as opposed to the unrestrained rule of men), which is one of the hallmarks of a limited republic, is one of the principal reasons that the erosion of our system of government has progressed relatively slowly during the past 80 years, that is, since the inauguration of Franklin D. Roosevelt and the prominence given by him to the concept of “democracy.” To be sure, erosion, even serious erosion, of our republican principles and the rule of law has taken place. However, the Constitution and the complex matrix of laws at every level that are derived from the Constitution have prevented any outright collapse of the fundamental structure set in place by the Founders and Framers. And so, the struggle goes on.
The author of the present book, Dr. Jake Jacobs, examines some recent battles in the ongoing “cultural and political war to destroy our republic under God,” to quote his words. The apparent motivation for the writing of this book relates to recent events in the State of Wisconsin where the governor Scott Walker, found, upon his inauguration, a situation that was rapidly pushing his state to the brink of bankruptcy. Consequently, he proposed the measures
necessary to balance the state’s budget, which included reining back the power of the public-employee unions. Those unions had for years made exorbitant demands. Governor Walker challenged the public-employee unions’ power, calling for limitations on their ability to hold the state hostage, and calling for cuts in the extravagant and unsustainable pension and health plans of union members. That direct defiance of the union power ignited a firestorm of fury on the part of the unions and of the whole apparatus of the extreme Left. Hordes of public employees and their allies descended on the capital, Madison, with hyperbolic signs calling the governor another Hitler, a maniac, and a dictator. Signs displaying the socialist clenched fist abounded. And, the author writes, “Anarchist, socialist, and Marxist websites expressed elation over the tens of thousands of mobocrats who gathered in Madison chanting over and over again, ‘This is what democracy looks like!’” deed, that is precisely what democracy looks like and that is precisely the reason the Founders wanted no part of it. Ultimately, as we know, Governor Walker, and the rule of law, prevailed, despite the “mobocratic” tactics of his opponents.
However, Walker’s struggle to save his state from fiscal ruin is only a small part of the story. The majority of this book explores the concerted efforts by the radical Left to undermine our form of government and the cultural foundation upon which that form of government rests.
Anyone old enough to remember the America of, say, 1950 or 1960 (or before) and the way of life, the customs, the manners and morals, the language, and so forth that typified those years knows that a subtle yet powerful revolution befell our great country beginning in the early 1960s. It is apparent that the men and women who conspired to overthrow the Republic discovered that the successful undermining of our American form of government must be preceded by the undermining of our culture and the way of thinking and acting that springs from our culture. Thus, as the author shows, recognizing that the U.S. Constitution was too hard a nut for them to crack all at once, the Left gradually but systematically took control of large portions of the mass media, the entertainment industry, and the educational system to achieve their cultural revolution.
That technique is based on the writings of communist Antonio Gramsci, who understood that a spontaneous communist uprising by the workers not only would likely not take place, but that such activities would engender massive opposition that would upset the plans of the conspirators. That was so because the culture had inculcated in the average citizen such things as honesty, morality, the love of God, the love of family, the love of country, and the love of liberty. So the culture itself, and the mores that characterize the culture, had to be weakened and finally demolished as a prelude to the destruction of our form of government and the imposition of a totalitarian regime.
At the heart of the Gramscian attack on our American institutions was, and is, the use of music — especially music that appeals to the young — as an organ of propaganda to subvert traditional morality. The author writes:
When CSN&Y sang and practiced, “if you can’t be with the one you love, love the one you’re with” at Woodstock in 1969, they were simply reflecting the “commune-ism” of Marx, Marcuse, and Mao’s “new communist family” which rejected Judeo-Christian monogamy, fidelity, and traditional marriage while advocating and practicing adultery, infidelity, and a myriad of alternative bohemian lifestyles and sexual practices. When Paul McCartney sang “Why don’t we do it in the road” or when John Lennon wrote “Imagine,” we see a fulfillment of cultural Marxism’s dictum: “Through the culture without bullets we can tear down the established Christian order.”
He adds, “The counterculture of the sixties was in many ways a natural conduit and fit for cultural Marxism as the hippies, yippies, communes, rock ’n rollers, poetmusicians, students, professors, and radical revolutionaries justified and defended in their music, poetry, classrooms, lifestyles, and militancy their wild and sinful ways.” That genre of music is still with us, though it continues to morph into ever more degenerate forms, pulling our culture ever lower. One can only lament that the naïve and the immature often buy this balderdash, which serves to
keep them mesmerized by the mirage of some “free-love” utopia, until the iron chains of enslavement are wrapped firmly around them.
Another of the weapons employed in this cultural revolution has been to convince people that our form of government is a democracy, which, as we mentioned earlier, it is not. A democracy, in the sense used by the radical Left, is, as the author points out, really a “mobocracy.” In a democracy, there is no stable rule of law, there are no genuine guaranteed rights, and the people are uninterruptedly incited through media manipulation to follow the whims of the moment. The rights of opponents are trampled upon. Opposition is shouted down, bullied, harassed, and threatened with physical violence. Democracy leads straight to unalloyed tyranny, since a debased and rootless people welcome the ostensible security that comes with tyranny. “Democracy is simply majoritarianism, which is inherently incompatible with real liberty,” Dr. Jacobs writes. Furthermore, the author notes, “Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels believed that for their absolute ‘scientific socialism’ to work, and for their historical determinism to succeed, the implementation of ‘democracy would be the road to socialism’ and socialism would be the path to communism”; hence the immense value to the radical Left of the catchword “democracy.”
Gramscian methods are discussed in some detail in Mobocracy, but also examined are other leftist methods such as Fabianism, which advocates a gradual drift to socialism through the “permeation” of existing political organizations, including, of course, government and the political parties. Above all, the Fabians seek to carry out their activities under the cloak of respectability. George Bernard Shaw spoke of this when he said that the Fabian Society (of which he was a member) made “it possible for an ordinary respectable religious citizen to profess socialism and belong to a Socialist Society without any suspicion of lawlessness.” Connected to this notion of “respectability” was the stratagem of recruiting members from the middle and upper classes, rather than the working class. That, needless to say, greatly enhanced the ability of the Fabians to penetrate into the government and to permeate with their ideas the various aspects of the culture (music, art, religion, education, language, science, etc.). Since the culture influences the manner in which people think and behave, so it is that the permeation there is essential to the triumph of the dubious ideals of the Fabians. Dr. Jacobs quotes Margaret Cole, the former leader of the British Fabian Society, as saying, “The Fabians were a ‘seeding’ body busily sowing socialistic schemes throughout society and then nursing them to full bloom.” We see, then, that Fabianism is a variation on a theme, later refined and developed by Antonio Gramsci.
John Adams wrote, “Democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There never was a democracy yet that did not commit suicide.”.
Among many other informative things, the author considers the way in which the adversaries of limited government misuse words with the object of changing their meaning, the baleful influence of the ACLU and the National Education Association, the “Progressive” movement, attacks on religion, the massive growth of government during recent decades, and much more. All of this demonstrates that the radical Left is relentless and that it is also patient, as it dismantles our culture and our republican form of government, bit by bit. I recommend Dr. Jacobs’ excellent volume. It is a comprehensive examination of the unhappy and alarming trends of our time.
Published in THE NEW AMERICAN • July 23, 2012 edition, page 31 & 32.