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Showing posts with label Clyde N. Wilson. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Clyde N. Wilson. Show all posts

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Pardon, Sam: A Slight Amendment

By Clyde N. Wilson

Our lamented friend Sam Francis scored big when he labeled the Democrats as “the evil party” and the Republicans as “the stupid party.” These telling characterizations have appealed to many later observers, as have other of Sam’s apt phrases, like “anarchotyranny.” Sam was always in earnest but his comments were often laced with humour. He knew what H.L. Mencken or Will Rogers or perhaps both said: Observing American politics is a hoot if you just keep a sane perspective and remember that their main use is entertainment.

There can be little dispute about “the evil party.” It might be said, however, that there is a slight Democratic credit here. Democrats sometimes actually believe the depraved stuff they spout and even try to make a rational-sounding argument. They pursue a real agenda and represent real interests. Not so the Republicans.

Are the Republican leaders really as stupid as they seem? Certainly the ideal Republican candidate for office is the same as any hostess wants for the spare man at her dinner party: presentable, not too old, no real work to do, with inherited money and a mediocre I.Q. Now and then, when fortunes are low, the Republicans will play the U.S. Grant card and go for a military hero, but lately that does not work as well as it used to.

The Republicans’ apparent stupidity rests on the fact that they invariably and with utter predictability betray their rank and file of Middle Americans and thereby presumably damage themselves. But is this really so stupid when the leaders can calculate with near certainty that the poor slobs will come back again no matter what is done to them? And when they know that if they show any real allegiance to their voters or try to do anything substantive for them, they will be declared by the media to be no longer respectable and thus be constantly on the defensive and guilty of un-American negativity?

A lot becomes clear when we realize that the Republican party is not a political party. Few of its leaders have any idea what a political principle is or what political debate is supposed to be. The few who do have an idea avoid such things like the plague. The Republican party is a marketing strategy. It is a coalition of mostly mediocre people running a campaign for power and perks. Everything these people say is a calculated advertisement without any sincerity or substance. Mentioning your competitor’s bad points is unattractively negative, no matter what terrible things he is accusing you of. Since you have no ideas or principles but only a lust for office, the easiest thing is to go along with the other fellow’s agenda and let him win most of the time. And whatever you may have told the slobs to get their votes is yesterday’s tired ad campaign that needs to be refreshed.


Clyde N. Wilson is a contributing editor to Chronicles. A retired professor of history at the University of South Carolina, he is the author of numerous books, including Carolina Cavalier: The Life and Mind of James Johnston Pettigrew and Defending Dixie: Essays in Southern History and Culture. He is the editor of The Papers of John C. Calhoun.


Tuesday, November 22, 2011

A Little Rebellion


From Chronicles Magazine
By Clyde N. Wilson


Scandalously, Thomas Jefferson once wrote to James Madison, “I hold it that a little rebellion now and then is a good thing, and is as necessary in the political world as storms in the physical.”

In the same year, 1787, in regard to what is known as Shays’ Rebellion, he wrote another friend, “God forbid that we should ever be 20 years without such a rebellion.” A lack of rebelliousness among the people would demonstrate “a lethargy, the forerunner of death to the public liberty. . . . And what country can preserve its liberties if its rulers are not warned from time to time, that this people preserve the spirit of resistance?”

The “rebellion” in Massachusetts had alarmed many, especially the masters of that commonwealth, who were imbued with a Puritan longing for regulated behavior and saw the tax revolt of Capt. Daniel Shays and his farmers as a threat to their control. In Jefferson’s perspective, the “rebels” were merely adhering to good American practice. What, indeed, had the recent War of Independence amounted to but resistance to heavy-handed government? And such rebellions against unsatisfactory government officials and policies had been a regular occurrence during the long colonial history of the Americans, especially in the Southern colonies.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Clyde N. Wilson: A Great Southern Patriot

What a blessing it has been to discover the books and articles of this great and good South Carolinian and defender of all that is best in Southern culture.  Clyde Wilson is a patriot who understands that a culture's true greatness lies not in the material, but in the permanent things; intangibles like truth, honor, courtesy, loyalty, faith and sacrifice.  May he long continue to point to the better path and the broad, sunlit uplands of freedom.


From Chronicles
By Clyde N. Wilson
Well, Old Man, 70 today. Who’d have thought? And still in pretty good condition, considering how little care I have taken of the old carcass. I understand now how the accumulation of minor miseries in aging is mercifully designed to let us down slow and easy till we are ready.

The children are OK. I still haven’t accepted that they are grown and responsible for themselves. However much I long to protect and help them, there is not much I can do now.

And that grandboy is something! Smart, fearless, and a winning personality. Lord, for this blessing I am truly grateful. But Lord, please don’t let that winning personality make him grow up to be a politician. Give him a useful, hands-on vocation. No need to worry. Son-in-law is a good man, another blessing, and will see the boy right.

And my other children OK, too. The young men who, to my surprise, came to study history with me—honest, courageous, Christian, and with a true vocation every one. A completely unexpected and undeserved blessing that has enriched and cheered me beyond measure. Now middle-aged, some of them, believe it or not. Not much more I can do for them either, but will do what I can. Ripples in the water.

The world seems an entirely different place now than when I was a child. Once ubiquitous, there is not a mule, a cotton field, a spittoon, or a lady’s fan left in Carolina. But it is more than that—the slow Southern contentment shared by black and white is gone. The world now is always promiscuously fast and noisy and full of strangers.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Maxims for American Intellectuals


(good for putting down right-wing bigots at cocktail parties or in the classroom)

From Chronicles
By Clyde N. Wilson

Taking off your shoes at the airport is patriotic and makes you safer.

If college athletes fail academically it is obviously society’s fault.

HIV is an unfortunate virus and not caused by human behaviour.

Presidents are good and do what is best for us, except Nixon.

Poverty causes crime and if we eliminate poverty we can eliminate crime.

America has always been a nation of immigrants.

Diversity is a wonderful thing. Everybody should be required to accept it.

Excellence in education and equality in education are the same thing.

We are bringing democracy to Iraq and Afghanistan. We ought to be, and soon will be, doing the same for Iran.

Freedom means that all forms of non-coercive sexual activity are equally acceptable, as is declared in the Constitution.

In our Constitution, the Founding Fathers established for all time that “all men are created equal.”

Our Constitution demands a “wall of separation” between church and state. Churches should never interfere in politics unless it is to support progressive causes.

There is no such thing as race, but some races deserve special advantages.

Crime and social dysfunction in Northern metropolises are caused by slavery in the South that ended a century and a half ago.

Slavery in the South was the greatest atrocity in history except for Hitler’s killing of the Jews.

People oppose Obama only because he is black.

Bigotry is totally unacceptable except anti-Catholicism and anti-Arabism.

Terrorism mostly is to be feared from right-wing bigots.

The volcano eruption in Iceland was caused by rising right-wing extremism.


Clyde N. Wilson is a contributing editor to Chronicles. A retired professor of history at the University of South Carolina, he is the author of numerous books, including Carolina Cavalier: The Life and Mind of James Johnston Pettigrew and Defending Dixie: Essays in Southern History and Culture. He is the editor of The Papers of John C. Calhoun.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

It’s True What They Say About Dixie


From Chronicles
By Clyde N. Wilson

Throughout most of American history region has been a better predictor of political position than party. That aspect of our reality has been neglected and suppressed in recent times as the rest of the country has conspired or acquiesced in transforming the South into a replica of Ohio.

Yet the notorious squeak vote on the ObamaCare bill shows that the old reality still exists and that the South is still the core and mainstay of any viable American conservatism. My friend Bill Cawthon has run down the statistics on the House of Representatives vote. Of the four census regions, the South was the only one to vote against the federal takeover of medicine. The South (the Confederacy plus Kentucky and Oklahoma) voted 71 per cent against the bill; the Northeast 75 per cent in favour; the West 61 per cent aye; and the Midwest divided evenly.

Every Southern State voted a majority negative. The no vote included 19 Democrats from the South. If you remove the four sparsely populated Plains States of the western Midwest, the Midwest total moves to a majority in favour of ObamaCare, even allowing for the no-vote of the Southern border State Missouri.

This pattern has held on every major piece of legislation since 1965, even allowing that Southern Congressional districts are designed by federal lawyers and judges to maximise the minority vote. Immigration, balanced budget, public prayer, women in combat—the South has provided the brake on the leftist agenda of federal grasp. Of the 212 nay votes on ObamaCare nearly half (100) came from the South.

A century and a half ago, John C. Calhoun, one of the most prescient observers of the American regime, remarked that the South was the balance wheel of the Union which prevented
the whole from flying apart under the stress of the manias that regularly seized hold of the mainstream. It looks as though that is still true, though our ability to control the machine grows weaker year by year.


Clyde N. Wilson is a contributing editor to Chronicles. A retired professor of history at the University of South Carolina, he is the author of numerous books, including Carolina Cavalier: The Life and Mind of James Johnston Pettigrew and Defending Dixie: Essays in Southern History and Culture. He is the editor of The Papers of John C. Calhoun.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Professor Clyde Wilson's Definition of "A Republican"


A South Carolinian for whom we have great admiration is Clyde N. Wilson. He is a contributing editor to Chronicles, a retired professor of history at the University of South Carolina, an author of many great books, including Carolina Cavalier: The Life and Mind of James Johnston Pettigrew and Defending Dixie: Essays in Southern History and Culture, and the editor of The Papers of John C. Calhoun.

Today Professor Wilson published in Chronicles his definition of a Republican. It is a painfully true definition of too many Republicans, particularly many Wilson has probably encountered in the South Carolina General Assembly, as well as in the previous national administration. However, we think there is growing resistance among Republicans and independents to just such "Republicans." Indeed, Professor Wilson's definition will be useful to us in weeding out precisely those Rockefeller-Whitman-Romney-Leatherman Republicans we will always and everywhere oppose.

A Republican Is Someone Who Thinks . . .

By Clyde N. Wilson

*That unemployment compensation for laid-off workers is socialism and multibillion-dollar bailouts for banking and stock swindlers is capitalism.

*That killing women and children with high explosives in remote corners of the earth is defending “our way of life.”

*That the purpose of education is to train good workers.

*That immigration is good because it supplies good cheap workers.

*That Earl Warren, Nelson Rockefeller, Gerald Ford, George W. Bush, Newt Gingrich, Rudy Giuliani, Colin Powell, and Mitt Romney are great American statesmen.

*That the main reason not to train women for combat is that it is inefficient.

*That the 10th Amendment means that the federal government should tell the States what to do rather than do it itself.

*That criticism of Lincoln is near treason.

*That the President is “Commander-in-Chief” of the country, especially when he is a Republican.

*That freedom is protected by undeclared wars and military tribunals.

*That “right to life” is a good campaign gimmick, but not to be taken seriously.

*That any campaign promise or slogan should gull the saps who are not in the know but is not to be taken seriously.

*That the way to beat the Democrats is to take up whatever they propose and promise to do it better.


Monday, February 1, 2010

Differences


By Clyde N. Wilson

How much better off the American people would be if they could learn the difference between:

investors and speculators

the Constitution ratified by the people of the States and the one promulgated by federal judges

education and training

necessary taxation and an oppressive burden

national defense and foreign interventionism

law enforcement and war

justifiable borrowing and destructive, irresponsible debt

entertainment and moral debasement

celebrity and worth

status and wisdom

status and virtue

affirmative action and equal treatment under the law

a citizen and a non-citizen

a guest and an invader

a “conservative” and a conservative

public life informed by Christianity and politicized churchmen

And especially the American people would profit if they learned not to believe that politics is the realm of doing good. Politics is the realm of vanity, greed, lust, deception, and force.

I am not holding my breath.


Clyde N. Wilson is a contributing editor to Chronicles. A retired professor of history at the University of South Carolina, he is the author of numerous books, including Carolina Cavalier: The Life and Mind of James Johnston Pettigrew and Defending Dixie: Essays in Southern History and Culture. He is the editor of The Papers of John C. Calhoun.

Monday, March 16, 2009

It Can’t Be Repeated Too Often (Until It Sinks In), Again


From Chronicles
By Clyde N. Wilson

“To see what is in front of one’s nose needs a constant struggle.” —Orwell


(Things that are known but which Americans do not acknowledge or discuss.)

Ruby Ridge. Your President George H.W. Bush sent a foreign assassin to murder (from hiding) an American woman standing in the door of her own home holding her baby.

Waco. Your President Clinton sent a military expedition to incinerate children who were unfortunate enough to be in company of adults who had offended the federal police apparatus.

9/11. Your federal government, with a $30 billion intelligence budget, could not prevent a bunch of unarmed felaheen (who should not even have been in the country to begin with) from killing over 3,000 people in our economic capital and destroying part of the military headquarters of our vaunted global empire.

Iraq. Your President Bush Minor lied to justify a failed war of agression. He sent the forces into an unnecessary war with inadequate equipment, despite a multibillion-dollar “defense” budget, and without a viable plan.

Many American citizens, probably in the thousands, have been murdered and otherwise victimised by illegal aliens because of your presidents’ deliberate decision not to enforce the laws, in order to put the interests of foreign politicians and domestic rich people over the welfare of citizens.

The Supreme Court and the federal bench for more than a half-century now have been dominated by evil people, unscrupulous petty tyrants, who have subverted the Constitution and laws, protected criminals from punishment, interfered in countless matters that are none of their business, overturned solemn decisions of the majority, and placed unjust burdens upon the people.

Nobody has ever been reprimanded (as far as I know), much less fired or punished for the above.


Clyde N. Wilson is a contributing editor to Chronicles. A retired professor of history at the University of South Carolina, he is the author of numerous books, including Carolina Cavalier: The Life and Mind of James Johnston Pettigrew and Defending Dixie: Essays in Southern History and Culture. He is the editor of The Papers of John C. Calhoun.