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Modern day assault on limited government groups began with CPUSA?

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posted on Apr, 25 2011 @ 04:08 PM
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Link

There is a lot of information in this article and is definitely worth a read. It is not long but very informative about the beginning of the attacks upon the John Birch Society and how they made official attempts to clear their name.

Some questions I have left from reading it are:
1. Communist Party USA was the first to create an article attacking JBS then just one week later the US Media began their assault, was there a connection between the CPUSA and the media at the time?
2. Since they were even evaluated and declared clean by the California government how come the attacks continued?
3. Was this the beginning of the assault upon those patriotic limited government groups? If so then the assaults began with the Communist Party. Shouldn’t that be acknowledged?

Give me your opinion only after reading the article.


On February 25, 1961, the official Communist newspaper on the West Coast called the Daily People's World, fired the opening broadside. The article was entitled, “Enter (from Stage Right) THE JOHN BIRCH SOCIETY.” The article depicted the John Birchers as a secret, Fascist society and said that it was setting up “cells” all across the country.
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In fact, the very next week Time magazine came out with a long article similar in many ways to the one in the People's World. As soon as I read the first paragraph I knew the John Birch Society was in for a real professional tar-brush treatment

edit on 4/25/2011 by Misoir because: (no reason given)




posted on Apr, 25 2011 @ 04:30 PM
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Many journalists were sympathetic to the CPUSA, being former members of the CPUSA or one of its many front groups. I hesitate to say there was some kind of organized conspiracy to attack the JBS. Likeminded people tend to operate in packs and all it takes is one alpha to get the pack going.



posted on Apr, 26 2011 @ 12:26 AM
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You are correct, as far as you go. The JBS was not a secret society; they were very open both in their justifications of their cause and in the makeup of their membership. They had storefronts; they recruited.

If I may digress for a moment: This is a bit of an "old geezers" subject. You were apparently around during (possibly) the '50s and (probably) the '60s, at the height of the Cold War. This subject isn't likely to interest many of the youngsters on this site. That just leaves us old guys. So let me remind you that the very nature and existence of the "American Way of Life" was at stake.

And even though the JBS claimed an interest in the preservation of the Constitution and popular participation in government, you have to remember that they were extremely--one might suggest unhealthily--nationalistic. One might even say to McCarthyist extremes. Here's a bit from McCarthyism, The John Birch Society and Nationalism in the United States, by Blair Beddow (11-30-2003):

Available Here


Clearly, both Joseph McCarthy and the John Birch Society supported a strong, but atypical form of nationalism. McCarthy’s speech in Wheeling and The Blue Book of the John Birch Society provide concrete evidence to support this claim. The stated purpose of both McCarthy and Welch (and their followers) was to secure American democracy, safety and freedoms. Nationalism was the channel through which to do this. Ironically, however, this form of nationalism was so extreme that it defeated its own purpose. While McCarthy and the John Birch Society worked to preserve these “freedoms” and “liberties”, they undercut individual rights to freedom of expression. Ellen Schrecker says, “The political repression of the McCarthy era fostered the growth of the national security state and facilitated its expansion into the rest of civil society”.14 The democratic freedom of being able to belong to a certain organization or the right to choose one’s own political beliefs was essentially taken away in the presence of such extreme nationalism. In effect, McCarthy and the John Birch Society were advocating such a radical form of nationalism that it essentially contradicted itself.


Let's not blind ourselves to those realities. I daresay we all believe in the Constitution--but not to the exclusion or limitation on one's rights to self-expression and freedom of association. Or so I fervently hope....



posted on Apr, 26 2011 @ 09:13 AM
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reply to post by Ex_CT2
 


I would caution you when opining about McCarthyism as most scholars who “specialize” in the subject, like Ellen Schrecker, intentionally conflate McCarthyism with the wider anti communist movement in the United States.

I don’t know how much you know about the history of the Communist Party in the US but up until the early 1950’s they were incredibly influential and acted as a defacto arm of the Soviet state. While this question was a matter of partisan debate during the cold war, the release of the VENONA transcripts as well as former KGBers looking to cash in made it quite clear that the US Communist Party was directly controlled by Moscow. The CPUSA was a real threat to America through both political subversion and their espionage efforts. I think it would have been difficult to imagine the United States commiting to mobilize to the extent that we did during the early Cold War had the CPUSA and its allies still maintained the positions and influence they held during the New Deal and WWII era.


The question you propose, whether circumstances do not sometimes occur, which make it a duty in officers of high trust, to assume authorities beyond the law, is easy of solution in principle, but sometimes embarrassing in practice. A strict observance of the written law is doubtless one of the high duties of a good citizen, but it is not the highest. The laws of necessity, of self-preservation, of saving our country when in danger, are of higher obligation. To lose our country by a scrupulous adherence to the written law, would be to lose the law itself, with life, liberty, property and all those who are enjoying them with us; thus absurdly sacrificing the ends to the means
– Thomas Jefferson

The Constitution is not a suicide pact.



posted on Apr, 26 2011 @ 10:04 AM
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reply to post by Misoir
 


Misoir: You have been the unwitting victim of a hoax. The story presented in the article by Cleon Skousen, the link to which you included in your article is entirely false.

Let’s recap the time-line which Skousen asks us to believe.

(1) July 1960 – the first negative “attack” on the Birch Sociey by Jack Mabley – then –

(2) December 1960 – the subsequent “further public criticism” commenced as a consequence of CPUSA “orders”

(3) The first tangible result of those "orders" appeared with the publication of the article in the 2/25/61 issue of the West Coast Communist newspaper, Daily People's World.

However, no less an authority than JBS-founder Robert Welch himself falsifies this time-line.

In a November 16, 1960 memo to his National Council, Mr. Welch announced that one item on the agenda for the next Council meeting would be:

“A brief report of the various smears of, and attacks on, the Society during the past few months.” [11/16/60 memo captioned “To All Members of the Council”, page 1]

Two months BEFORE even this 11/60 memo, Welch sent a memo to his Council which refers to what he discussed during a September 10, 1960 meeting of the Council at JBS headquarters in Belmont MA.

Referring to that meeting, Welch wrote:

“Later in the morning I also read to those present the nine-page letter we had written to Dr. Fred Schwarz, which is self-explanatory, and which will give you information concerning the origin of the recent unfavorable newspaper publicity about us, which will undoubtedly surprise many members of the Council.” [9/14/60 Welch memo, “To All Members of the Council”, page 1.]

Thus, in summary, as can be seen, the initial criticisms of both Welch and the Birch Society originated not from “Communists” but from persons and organizations on his side of the political spectrum---particularly as a result of newspaper publicity about the content of Welch’s “private letter”, The Politician

And the first paragraph of the September 1960 JBS Bulletin opened with the following lament by Robert Welch:

“For the past five weeks – it seems like five months – the John Birch Society has lived through one massive smear campaign on a national scale, and several regional attacks with varying degrees of plausibility, reach, and impact.”

Furthermore, as the JBS grew and its members started acting upon the recommended activities in JBS Bulletins (prior to the February 1961 article in People’s World), they provoked heated controversies in communities around the nation.

Those controversies included:

* a lecture and filmstrip entitled "Communism on the Map" which the FBI reviewed and concluded was "biased" because they "frequently deal in half truths, distortion of truth and innuendos to establish its point, that international communism is encircling America"

* the effort by the JBS to impeach Chief Justice Earl Warren of the U.S. Supreme Court

* JBS-initiated attacks on the patriotism of prominent authors such as Harry A. Overstreet (and claims that his 1958 book, What We Must Know About Communism was “pro-Communist”)

* attacks upon the League of Women Voters, attacks upon the National Council of Churches of Christ and sensational charges about purported “Communist infiltration” of our clergy and religious institutions

* the outrage over comments made by Robert Welch in his book-length “private letter”, entitled "The Politician" which accused President Eisenhower of being a Communist traitor

* an anti-UNICEF campaign, attacks upon the ACLU and anyone working for elimination of the House Committee on Un-American Activities, attacks upon the Great Decisions discussion group program

* JBS infiltration of PTA’s, JBS anti-fluoridation activities, and many many more local controversies too numerous to list.

The FBI prepared a summary report on the JBS in April 1961 and a section of the report was captioned "The Present Controversy". The summary does not mention "Communist" direction of any "smear" campaign against the JBS.

Instead, the Bureau presented a different interpretation about the reasons for the controversy regarding the JBS as follows:

"The JBS is probably one of the most controversial organizations in the country today. This controversy stems mainly from the allegations made by Welch and the Society alluding to President Eisenhower being procommunist; the allegations that there are communists in other high Government positions; and calling for the impeachment of Chief Justice Warren. This controversy has led to many attacks on Welch and the Society through the newspapers and in some congressional circles." [FBI HQ file 62-104401, serial #1746; 8/29/62 J. Edgar Hoover memo to Deputy Attorney General].

As can be seen from the information presented above (including comments made by Robert Welch!), the adverse comments or publicity about the Birch Society began LONG BEFORE any article appeared in a "Communist newspaper" in late February 1961.

Furthermore, the Skousen article (which repeats the standard JBS mythology about this subject) totally ignores all of the newspaper coverage that existed months before February 1961. For example:


Date................................................Publication or Source

04/15/60……………………………......Phoenix AZ Republic
07/25/60..........................................Chicago Daily News
07/30/60..........................................Racine WI Journal-Times
07/31/60..........................................Milwaukee WI Journal
08/01/60……………………………......Oshkosh WI Daily Northwestern
08/01/60..........................................Appleton WI Post-Crescent
08/03/60……………………………......Milwaukee WI Journal
08/04/60..........................................Appleton WI Post-Crescent
08/07/60..........................................Amarillo TX News-Globe
08/10/60..........................................Appleton WI Post-Crescent
08/11/60……………………………......Vilas WI News-Review
08/14/60..........................................Amarillo TX News-Globe
[Note: Extensive News-Globe coverage of local controversies involving Birchers was responsible for correspondence received by the FBI inquiring about the JBS. Also, several FBI memos between top FBI officials concerning the JBS referred to letters received from Texas residents who were concerned about inflammatory comments made by Birchers – including JBS National Council members.]
08/26/60………………………………....Appleton WI Post-Crescent
08/30/60...........................................Chicago IL Daily News
08/28-30/60.......................................Boston MA Herald
09/60................................................NAM resolution
In September 1960, the National Association of Manufacturers released the following statement:
"NAM believes completely in the loyalty and integrity of President Dwight D. Eisenhower, and further believes he courageously and forthrightly has guided the foreign and domestic policies of the United States in the direction in which in his judgment the best interests of this country lie. NAM as an organization does not and will not knowingly be associated with any individual or be a party to any organization that questions the loyalty or integrity of President Eisenhower or attempts to degrade the fundamental respect due him and his high office.”
09/13/60...........................................Chicago IL Daily News
09/25/60………………………………....Milwaukee WI Journal
09/29/60...........................................San Marino CA Tribune
09/30/60...........................................The Tidings (Boston MA Catholic publication)
11/15/60...........................................The Sunflower (Univ of Wichita KS student paper)
11/28/60...........................................Stamford CT Advocate column by W.D. Workman
12/16/60...........................................Phoenix AZ Republic
12/16/60………………………………....Phoenix Arizona Republic
01/12/61………………………………....Cody WY Enterprise
01/13/61………………………………....Butte MT Standard
01/14/61………………………………....Los Angeles Evening Herald and Express
01/22/61...........................................St. Louis MO Post-Dispatch
01/22-23/61......................................Santa Barbara CA News-Press



posted on Apr, 26 2011 @ 10:46 PM
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Whooo!
Holy Hell, guys. I'm way out of my depth. Excuse me while I go dabble in the Aliens & UFOs forum.

Later....



posted on May, 1 2011 @ 12:05 PM
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reply to post by Ex_CT2
 


Ex-CT2 Many oh man, you got that right. This place, ATS, is like a rabbit warren. Everytime I think I'm going to get to the bottom of something, it just branches out into a dozen more tunnels. I am intrigued though with how much of our present neo/con perspective seems to have so much in common with JBS.




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