Christianity In The Service Of A
Note: To view Part 2 of this article, click
by: S.R. Shearer
of wheat for a penny, and three measures of barley for a penny;
and see thou hurt not the oil and the wine." (Rev. 6:6)
D.R. McConnell, in his book, A Different Gospel, writes:
"It is a strange curiosity that those Christians who are most
adamant that our's is the generation that will see the Lord's return
- and the endtime deception and apostasy associated with his return
- look for signs of this deception outside the church, in such
conspiracies as the New Age movement, and in such cults as Mormonism,
the Jehovah's Witnesses, and Christian Science.
Admittedly, these movements pose potential threats to the
church, but perhaps we would do better to look for the deception
of the end-times where Jesus and the New Testament predicted
it would occur: within the church, within groups that
call themselves "Christian" but which actually preach
a different gospel."
We agree. The apostasy that the Bible says will occur in the "end
of days" is not something that is going to take place OUTSIDE
the church; rather it is something that is going to take place INSIDE
it. But how? - that's the question. To understand the dynamic at work
here we must put what is happening to the church in a larger context.
Too many people try to understand "last things" from only
the perspective of RELIGION. But that's not possible.
There are other dynamics at work - political, economic and military
dynamics - and all of them one way or another impinge on the church
and the apostasy that is at work within it, transforming what we know
as the ORGANIZED church into the monster the Scriptures
say it will become. And one needs to be clear here: IT WILL OCCUR
- as sure as the sun rises in the east and sets in the west, and NOTHING
will stop it! The Bible says:
"Let no man deceive you by any means: for THAT DAY (i.e.,
the day of Christ's return, cf vs. 2) shall not come, except
there come (first) a falling away (i.e., Gk., apostasia - or
the apostasy of the church) first, and that MAN OF SIN BE REVEALED,
the son of perdition;
"Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called
God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple
of God, showing himself that he is God." (2 Thess. 2:3-4)
OUTSIDE DYNAMICS THAT IMPINGE ON APOSTASY
One of these dynamics is the increasing speed at which REAL
democracy is disappearing in the world today - contrary to what
one hears being trumpeted from the mainline press. The fact
is, the world is not becoming more democratic, but less - and
it is being driven forward in this process by the ever quickening
pace of globalization and the inexorable division of the world
into a small elite of wealthy "worthies" and a huge
population of indigent "worker-serfs" - a division
that follows in the wake of the globalization process as surely
as water flows downhill.
And it is important to note here that the division of the earth's
population in this fashion is occurring not only in the socalled "Developing
World," but in the socalled "Developed World" as well
- so that now the meaning behind that mysterious lyric in Rev. 6:6 becomes
"A measure of wheat for a penny [literally - denarius, a Greek
coin which represented a WHOLE DAYS wages], and three
measures of barley for a penny; and see thou hurt not the oil and
the wine." (Rev. 6:6)
The meaning of this lyric is that the condition of man during this
era (i.e., the "end of days") will be reduced to such that
he will have to labor a whole day simply to buy a loaf of bread or three
measures of barley. But the second part of the lyric [i.e., "... and
see thou hurt not the oil and the wine ..."] means that the "hard
times" of this period will not extend to the elites. This is the
common interpretation - the one subscribed to by Ryrie, Pentacost, Ironside,
OBVIOUSLY, UNDER THE IMPRESS OF THIS KIND OF MALIGNANT DYNAMIC,
DEMOCRACY IS NOT WORKABLE. Why? - because in societies where
people are ground into the dirt by the crush of the powerful, those
responsible cannot then expect those they have beaten down to endorse
what they have done through the socalled "democratic process."
In other words, when the elites force the poor into what are for all
practical purposes "slave-labor camps" in countries like Thailand,
Indonesia, El Salvador, Hati, etc. - and when they lock the gates to
keep the workers in - forcing them to make Armani shirts for 80 cents
a day at the rate of more than 100 shirts an hour in twelve hour shifts
that run seven days a week, they cannot then expect these workers to
endorse this kind of brutality through the ballot box. Democracy - REAL
democracy - is not something the elites would want to endorse in this
kind of situation.
It's tantamount to giving the whip to the slaves and expecting
the slaves to willingly give it back so that they can be beaten all
the more! At best, in such situations democracy must be reduced
to a sham - the way it was in the South during the era of Jim Crow where
blacks (and the poor in general) were "limited" in their access
to the "democratic process."
LEGITIMIZING ELITE POWER
If the elites, then, are unable to derive their legitimacy as a result
of a REAL appeal to the "will of the people,"
how then can they derive it? After all, ALL authority must
be legitimized. Ultimately, naked force is not enough, as the recent
collapse of Communism in the old Soviet Union and Eastern Europe clearly
demonstrates. No one group - especially a small minority (i.e., the
rich) - can assert to any great degree and over any great length of
time its superiority and right to rule based simply on brute force.
AND IT IS PRECISELY HERE THAT RELIGION PRESENTS ITSELF AS A USEFUL
TOOL IN THE HANDS OF THE RICH!! In those societies where an appeal
to the "will of the people" is not possible on any kind of
meaningful basis, religion gives sanction to the rule of the privileged
minority over and against the oppressed majority.
And not only that, it puts at ease the sometimes tortured souls of
those who must exercise brute power in the name of the state - in other
words, those who must do the elites' dirty work; it allows them to believe
the lie that what they are doing, they are doing in the name of God
and as His servants; that they hold their power as a result of "divine
right" - Gott mit uns ("God is with us"), as the
beltbuckles on the uniforms of the SS read.
This is what sustained the army officers in the Argentine military
who were responsible for dumping leftist political prisoners (men, women
and children - some barely into their teens) alive over the Atlantic
from the bellies of Argentine naval planes in the late 1970s and early
'80s: Accompanying each of the death flights were Protestant pastors
and / or Catholic priests whose job it was to "comfort" NOT
the victims but the occasionally squeamish death squad functionary with
various Scriptures from the Bible about the necessity of "separating
the wheat from the chaff" - i.e., the Junta's enemies from the
RELIGION HELPS TO LEGITIMIZE UNDEMOCRATIC STATES
The truth is, until the relatively recent advent of broad based democratic
institutions and their concomitant appeal to "the people" as a basis
of legitimacy, religion formed the foundation for most social and state
authority - and this was as true for the nations of Western Civilization
as it was for the civilizations of Asia, Africa, the Near East and Central
and South America. As a result, the state has historically been bound
up with religion either explicitly or implicitly.
RELIGION LEGITIMIZES STATE POWER IN SOCIETIES THAT ARE ESSENTIALLY
UNDEMOCRATIC AND CANNOT, AS A RESULT, RELY ON THE "WILL OF THE
PEOPLE" AS THE SOURCE OF THEIR LEGITIMACY. And it should be
remarked here that religion is important to the state in INVERSE
proportion to the state's brutality. The more brutal the state, the
greater the need for its rulers to undergird it by a resort to religion.
Historically, then, religion has operated as an INSTRUMENT OF OPPRESSION
- A MEANS THROUGH WHICH THE RICH CAN OPPRESS THE POOR. Religion,
when it operates in this capacity, has NOTHING TO DO WITH COMPASSION,
TENDERNESS AND MERCY, AND EVERYTHING TO DO WITH THE EXERCISE OF BRUTE
POWER - and this is why the poor and the dispossessed have always
hated STATE-sanctioned religion.
When Christianity operates in this capacity; when it serves the interests
of the elites of this world, when it becomes the servant of the state;
when it becomes an instrument of the rich to oppress the poor - IT
HAS BECOME APOSTATE. That is what apostasy is all about!
- AT LEAST IN THE FIRST INSTANCE!!
That's where it begins! The false doctrine that inevitably follows
this condition of things - i.e., apostasy - is made necessary to mold
the church to its new reality as a servant to the rich rather than to
the poor; as a servant to the elites rather than to the downtrodden;
as a servant to the state rather than to the kingdom of heaven.
After all, what do the elites want with a religion whose Originator
"LAY NOT UP FOR YOURSELVES TREASURES UPON THE EARTH,
where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through
" But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither
moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through
" For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also."
Or what good is a religion to the elites that would tell the rich
"... If thou wilt be perfect, GO SELL (ALL) THAT THOU HAST,
AND GIVE IT TO THE POOR, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven:
and come and follow me." (Matt. 19:21) ?
Pretty hard to be a member of the elite if you don't have any money
- that is, after all, the basis of the elite's power. And what do the
elites want with a religion that forbids its members to "Lord it
over God's heritage:"
"But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Ye know that the
princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion over them, and they that
are great exercise authority upon them.
"But it shall not be so among you: but whosoever will be great
among you, let him be your minister;
"And WHOSOEVER WILL BE CHIEF AMONG YOU, LET HIM BE YOUR SERVANT:
"Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but
to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many." (Matt.
Pretty hard to set yourself up as a member of the elite and justify
your position over the rest of mankind when you are commanded by the
same religion not only to give your money to the poor, but to become
their servant (slave) as well. And finally, what do the elites want
with a religion that says -
"... LOVE YOUR ENEMIES, DO GOOD TO THEM WHICH HATE YOU,
"Bless them that curse you, and pray for them which despitefully
"And unto him that smiteth thee on the one cheek offer also
the other; and him that taketh away thy cloak forbid not to take thy
"Give to every man that asketh of thee; and of him that taketh
away thy goods ask them not again." (Luke 6:27-30) ?
Pretty hard to command armies and conquer your enemies when your religion
commands you to "LOVE your enemies," "do
good to them which hate you," and you are told to give to those
who would steal your jacket your coat also. No! - such verses must be
"RE-INTERPRETED!" - and, again, that's where
HOW UNDEMOCRATIC HAS THE WORLD BECOME?
Now if the main purpose of religion insofar as the elites are concerned
is to justify their oppression of the poor, and if that oppression is
predicated on how undemocratic the system of government is that the
elites are using to guarantee their rule, the question that begs to
be answered is, How undemocratic has their rule become? That will give
the answer as to how dependent the rich in this country have become
on religion to guarantee their rule. And the answer is, Pretty undemocratic!
One has only to peruse the model that the elites in the United States
are using insofar as their "New World Order" is concerned
to substantiate that fact. The model calls for most of the nations of
the world to be divided into two parts -
- An elite class of political / economic "managers," which
in most countries (especially those countries that are part of the
so-called "Third World") approximates about 20 percent of
the population, and
- A "worker-serf" class which makes up the remaining 80
percent of the population.
The "managers" rule the country at the behest and in the
interest of American corporate power, which itself is sustained by the
machinations and intrigues of the CIA in coordination with local police
and military forces coupled with the use of death squads when the occasion
demands it; all of this in turn is backed up by the guns of the American
DEMOCRACY IN AMERICA'S "CLIENT STATES"
Now insofar as what passes for democracy in this world, it should
be noted that within the boundaries defined by this class (i.e., the
"political / economic manager" class) a semblance of democracy
does indeed prevail, and it is because of this that the United States
never tires of trumpeting the so-called "fact" that it is
helping to "build democracy" throughout the world. But it
should also be noted that the kind of "democracy" that the
United States is promoting here is, as we just noted, the same kind
of "democracy" that prevailed for whites in southern states
like Mississippi and Alabama during the era of "Jim Crow"
Unfortunately - and just as the case was for blacks in these states
during "Jim Crow" - for the eighty percent of the population
of America's system of "CLIENT-STATES" that
fall into the "worker-serf" category, it is a notably cruel
and utterly despotic system that entails grinding poverty and horrifying,
constant humiliations of every sort that aim at stripping people of
their self-respect and robbing them of any vestige of what might pass
as dignity and honor - a process which tends to dehumanize all those
against whom it is directed, just as it did to blacks during the age
of "Jim Crow" and segregation.
THE ROLE OF RELIGION IN AMERICA'S "CLIENT STATES"
There is no place in such an environment for real democracy, nor can
there be much occasion in this kind of system for the exercise of a
legitimate, Bible-based form of Christianity where the church serves
the interests of heaven (and the poor) rather than the interests of
this present evil world (and the rich). It's a universe where the leaders
of the church have been pressed into service as population "CONTROLLERS"
(overseers and "labor managers," so to speak) for the wealthy,
and whose primary function is to "mold" and "fit"
the "worker-serf" portion of the population into useful and
effective "cogs," "gears," "sprockets,"
and "ratchets" in the elite's corporate machine.
Being a "good Christian" in such a world means being
a compliant and docile worker, which, ipso facto, means avoiding
membership in unions or worker organizations of any kind; knowing how
to say, "Yes sir" and "No sir" to your "Betters;"
not being a "complainer;" avoiding welfare even if that translates
practically into holding down several jobs at the same time in order
to make ends meet - and making your wife and children do the same; not
fussing when elections are rigged; not fretting about police brutality
or questioning the authorities when your neighbors and loved-ones are
hauled "downtown" on trumped up charges, and so forth. This
is what is meant when people say that this person or that person is
a "good Christian" in country after country in America's system
of "CLIENT STATES" like Brazil, Guatemala, El
Salvador, the Philippines, Argentina, Honduras, etc.
THE EXPANSION OF THIS PATHOLOGY TO THE UNITED STATES
AND ONE SHOULD BEAR IN MIND HERE THAT IT IS THE MANIFEST INTENTION
OF THE ELITES RESPONSIBLE FOR PUSHING THIS MODEL ON THE WORLD AT LARGE
TO EXTEND IT TO THE UNITED STATES AS WELL. And that is exactly what
they are doing right now - and just how far they have proceeded in the
process of reducing a great portion of the population of the United
States to "Third World" status becomes apparent when one examines
the developing gulf between the rich and the poor in this country.
The fact is, the gap has become so wide that today the top 3 percent
of the population make more money than the bottom 51 percent, with only
the remaining 46 percent of the population (i.e., that portion of the
population whose income falls between the 51st percentile of the populace
and the 97th percentile) still comfortably ensconced in the middle-class.
The bottom 51 percent of the population (the "counter-opposite"
to the top 3 percent) range from the ultra poor to those who, at great
human cost to themselves (e.g., both spouses working sometimes at more
than one job apiece paying little or no benefits, children growing up
without a mom at home, etc.), are still contriving to hold on to a semblance
of a middle-class lifestyle (usually a "lower middle-class"
lifestyle). Moreover, within this 51 percent of the population there
exists a portion of these people who have fallen into the "underclass."
[More about these numbers and percentages later.]
This "underclass" constitutes today between one-quarter
and one-third of the total U.S. population. It's a portion of the
population that no longer possess the means of keeping body and soul
together in any SIGNIFICANT manner because they are either
unemployed or are grossly under-employed in part-time jobs paying minimum
wages with no benefits.
CIVIL BEHAVIOR AND MEANINGFUL WORK
The truth is, when people exist at this level of unemployment and
"under-employment," they are led inexorably into all sorts
of malignant social pathologies. And why is that? - because without
MEANINGFUL work, their routine of life begins to collapse
around them. The collapse occurs because it is precisely this routine
- more often than most of us realize - around which we regulate our
civil behavior. And that is important for us to realize: our occupational
behaviors and outlooks underpin our way of life and determine our family,
community, and cultural patterns. When large numbers of people are barred
from MEANINGFUL occupations, our system of social control
Without work, people cannot conform to family and community roles;
and if the dislocation is widespread, the legitimacy of the social order
itself will inevitably come to be questioned. When that happens, the
result is usually civil disorder which in time may threaten to overturn
existing social and economic arrangements as more and more people begin
to define their hardships not as an individual failure, but as a fault
of "the system." This is what happened in the French Revolution
of 1789, in the Mexican Revolution of 1911, in the Russian Revolution
of 1917, in the Iranian Revolution of 1978; and this is precisely what
brought the Nazis to power in Germany in 1933.
THERE IS REVOLUTION IN THE AIR
THIS IS EXACTLY WHAT IS BEGINNING TO HAPPEN THROUGHOUT THE UNITED
STATES IN THOSE AREAS WHERE THE UNDERCLASS HAS BEEN CONFINED - REVOLUTION
IS IN THE AIR, and it is beginning to be manifested in America's
ghettos in incidents like those that occurred in Los Angeles in 1991
and Cincinnati just recently.
For example, in Cincinnati - in interview after interview - when so-called
rioters were questioned by the media, they defined the disorder they
were engaged in not as criminal behavior or vandalism - which is what
the elite press defined it as - but as "acts of insurrection."
This is certainly what members of the "New Black Panther Party"
called it, and the NAACP wasn't that far behind in embracing such a
definition also. White, evangelical Christians might dismiss such talk
as nothing more than an excuse for vandalism, but then this is how the
British defined the Boston Tea Party - as an act of vandalism, not as
a well-justified act of "civil disobedience," as white evangelicals
would call it. "Criminal Behavior" or a noble "Act
of Insurrection?" - IT APPEARS THAT IT'S ALL IN THE EYES OF THE
The same holds true for the student activists engaged in acts of violence
in Seattle, in Washington D.C., in Philadelphia, in Los Angeles, and
most recently in Quebec City against the hated institutions of globalism,
i.e., the IMF, NAFTA, the WTO, the FTAA, the World Bank, etc. - disorders
which encompassed a student / labor alliance that the elites are
increasingly terrified of.
THE SOCIAL PATHOLOGIES THAT
ACCOMPANY UNEMPLOYMENT AND POVERTY
Apologists for the elites try to pass the poverty and unemployment
that is driving the revolt off on the so-called MORAL
failure of the poor. That at the bottom of the underclass's financial
difficulties lie personal problems of a MORAL nature -
i.e., indolence and slothfulness, single motherhood, family breakdown,
drugs, criminal behavior, etc. - and this is what leads to chronic unemployment.
But the EXACT opposite is true - crime, broken marriages,
single motherhood, and all the rest flow in large part from the lack
The truth is, as we just suggested, the financial stress of poverty
and unemployment (or "under-employment") is extremely debilitating.
Just how much this stress has contributed to the general malaise affecting
the one-quarter to one-third of the population that is unemployed or
"under-employed" and that - as a result - live in poverty
and "near-poverty" was demonstrated some years back by a computer
model developed at the University of New York. The university fed job,
gross national product, divorce, and other demographic data into an
econometric model to arrive at the conclusion that for every 1 percent
rise in the unemployment rate, approximately 10,000 more divorces occur.
The econometric model developed by the University of New York has
since been substantiated by a study released by the Census Bureau. The
study documents in stark terms the social impact of job loss, and the
resultant poverty which inevitably follows, on American families. The
report was the bureaus first systematic analysis of social and economic
conditions under which households are created and dissolved. The report
"Poor two-parent families were about twice as likely to break up
as were two-parent families not in poverty."
Donald J. Hernandez, the Census Bureau demographer responsible for
the report, says that,
"... stresses arising from low income and poverty appeared to cotribute
substantially to the breakup of two-parent families."
The likelihood that a two-parent family will break up increases when
the husband does not work, and it is even greater when neither spouse
works. The Census Bureau found that 12 percent of poor white two-parent
families had dissolved within two years, but only 7 percent of white
families above the poverty level had broken up. Among African American
two-parent families, 21 percent of those who were poor broke up within
two years, compared with only 11 percent of those who were not in poverty.
Among Latino families, the dissolution rates were about the same for
poor and non-poor households: 11 percent and 9 percent, respectively.
Hernandez goes on to say:
"Over the last decade or two, there has been a lot of emphasis on
the rise of one-parent families as a cause of poverty. BUT THIS
REPORT SHOWS THAT THE OPPOSITE PROCESS IS ALSO IMPORTANT."
Hernandez continued -
"... many poor one parent families formed within the last year were
already poor before their two-parent families broke up."
That was true for 26 percent of white families and for 39 percent of
African American families. Hernandez wrote:
"When you look at one-year transitions into poverty, most of them
are associated with job losses and income reductions, not with major
changes in family structure, such as the breakup of two-parent families."
Similar correlations can easily be demonstrated between economic stress,
on the one hand, and child neglect, spousal abuse, alcohol and drug
addiction and other moral failures.
It's easy, of course, for white, middle-class Christians to believe
otherwise; in fact, it is very CONVENIENT for them to
do so! But if they were faced with the barriers to MEANINGFUL
employment that most blacks, Latinos, and a growing number of "throw
away" whites face, they would no doubt think very differently
than they do now! There is simply not enough MEANINGFUL
jobs in the United States anymore (largely as the result of elite "free
trade" policies and job shifting from the U.S. to the "Third
World) for everyone to find MEANINGFUL work, not even
close - AND THAT'S THE TRUTH OF THE MATTER. And this phenomenon
is an ever growing reality as more and more jobs are shipped overseas
so that the elites can take advantage of the cheap labor and lax environmental
standards that prevail there.
The fact is, a REPUDIATION of societal values takes
place in areas where extreme poverty prevails. At first this repudiation
results in what can be defined as criminal behavior - i.e., thievery,
burglary, fraud, gang-banging, etc.; after all, thievery is one way
of surviving in areas where MEANINGFUL work cannot be
found.But should the kind of mass unemployment and / or underemployment
that caused the criminal activity continue on indefinitely and in such
a way that it begins to appear SYSTEMIC, then the criminal
activity can come to be defined as morally proper, and as an appropriate
response of the oppressed toward the oppressors, and as activity that
can be justified on the ground that the rich have stolen from the poor
- so, in a way, reparations are due.
This phase - when illegal acts pass from being CRIMINAL
acts in the minds of those committing them to REVOLUTIONARY acts
- is a critical step in the pathology that leads to revolution.
Again, this is what happened in all those instances listed above - i.e.,
the French Revolution of 1789, the Mexican Revolution of 1911, the Russian
Revolution of 1917, the Iranian Revolution of 1978, etc. When this occurs,
disorder is likely to spread and even worsen. To the extent that such
a "TRANSVALUATION" takes place, the kind of
disorder that leads to revolution becomes a very real possibility.
THE REALITY OF UNEMPLOYMENT AND "UNDER-EMPLOYMENT"
Some who are reading this article will, no doubt, believe that the
kind of conditions we are describing here do not as yet exist in the
United States. But they do! - it's just that they are being carefully
hidden from most white, middle-class Christians by elite manipulation
of the mainline press. Take, for example, how the elites are manipulating
the serious nature of unemployment (or under-employment) and poverty.
To hear the corporate media, one could very well be excused in believing
that there is no longer such a thing as "unemployment" in
this country - and that's because for years the real extent of unemployment
and under-employment in the United States has been purposely
understated by the government. Technically, the unemployment figure
is supposed to be based on a national survey of households; but in reality
- after everything is said and done, and all the mathematical models
have been employed through which the survey numbers are "crunched"
- the only people who are really counted as "unemployed" in
the U.S. are those who are drawing unemployment benefits.
If a person has not found employment in the time allotted for him
to draw these benefits, he is simply dropped from the unemployment rolls
and counted as "no longer looking for work." What this generates
is an open-ended condition of things where the number of people who
enter the unemployment list is offset by those who are exiting the list
on the other end because their benefits have run out (usually after
six months). It's a marvelous bit of bureaucratic obfuscation - a kind
of "catch 22" in which the government can't lose. In addition,
people who work part-time, but who desperately want full-time work,
are not counted; people who are seeking a job, and in the interim do
volunteer work, are not counted; people who manage to scrape up occasional
odd jobs (mowing lawns, washing dishes, etc.) are not counted, and so
forth and so on. It's all smoke and mirrors!
For example, in 1995 we did a study of unemployment in the United States.
At the time, the nation's official unemployment rate was touted at 5.47
percent or 7.18 million people who said they were looking for work,
but couldn't find any; that's the figure that was being bantered around
in the press and by all the "talking heads" in the media.
But the real figure was much, much higher. In addition, to the 7.18
million officially counted as "unemployed," there were another
5.58 million (4.4 percent) whose "unemployment" benefits had
run out, and they had been - as an administrative matter - dropped from
the "unemployment list" and counted as "no longer looking
for work." The reasoning here seems to have been that if they couldn't
find work in six months time, they weren't looking hard enough. Then
there were another 4.46 million people (3.4 percent) who were part-time
because they couldn't find full-time work. In addition, there were 3.01
million (2.3 percent) who were doing volunteer work in the hope that
it would result in permanent employment, and, finally, there were 3.27
million (2.5 percent) who were classified by the Bureau of Labor Statistics
as "permanently unemployed." All this puts the real jobless
rate at about 18 percent - that's more than three times
the figure that was being advertised by the corporate media and the
government as being "unemployed."
The Bureau of Labor Statistics, of course, reports that they are careful
to note in their reports that the government's "official rate"
of unemployment discounts the categories listed above (and, as a result,
they are not being dishonest in their reporting). Naturally, however,
this is done in the fine print! In addition, the fact that the "unemployment
rate" does not reflect the categories listed above is certainly
not "talked up" by the Bureau of Labor Statistics to the press;
nor does the corporately-controlled press seem to be in much of a hurry
to dig these facts up for themselves.
POVERTY: A SECOND MEASURE AS TOTHE EXTENT WE HAVE BEEN DECEIVED
Eighteen percent unemployment or under-employment! - that comes
pretty close to the amount of people in this country that are living
in conditions approaching abject poverty - and that brings us to the
second example of how "truth" is being "MANUFACTURED"
and "ENGINEERED" to suit the needs of the elites.
Government figures estimate that fifteen percent of the U.S. population
are living in extreme poverty. But this "official" measure
of poverty - like the unemployment figures - greatly underestimates
the amount of poor in America.
When the poverty line was first calculated back in the 1960s, the
average family spent one-third of its income on food, and the poverty
line was set at three times food costs, adjusted for family size. But
by 1990, food costs had dropped to one-sixth of the average family budget
because other components - such as housing - had inflated at far higher
If the 1990 official poverty line of $13,360 for a family of four
had been recalculated to reflect changes in the real costs of these
components, it would have been about 155 percent of the official rate,
or $21,700. [Note: the 2000 figure has not been officially established,
although it is estimated that as a percentage of the population, the
number of people who are "officially" poor will increase.]
Now, that's HOUSEHOLD income. That's 25.6 percent or ONE-QUARTER
of the U.S. population living in conditions approaching unimaginable
poverty insofar as those who live in the gated communities of "Yuppie
Land" are concerned. That's one out of four people in the United
States!! - and most of these people are working, holding down two, three,
and sometimes four part time jobs paying minimum wage with no benefits.
And remember here - there is no such a thing as AFDC anymore; it's
all "workfare." MOST OF THESE PEOPLE ARE WORKING!
You don't hear that figure - i.e., that one out of every four people
in the United States are living in poverty - bantered about much in
the country's corporate media, now do you? You don't hear the people
on CNN and CNBC (between adds touting brokerage services for Goldman-Sachs,
Morgan Stanley, the Kaufman Fund, Schwab, etc.) talking much about this.
THESE ARE SOCIETY'S CASTOFFs - the people no one sees,
though they are all around us.
LOOKING AT THE POOR, BUT NOT SEEING THEM
The poor are there! - but somehow or other we look straight through
them as if they don't exist; for example, the busboy that greets you
at the Hilton next time you stay there; the maid that makes your bed
up at the same hotel; the janitors that come in after your office closes
for the day and clean up after you; the people down at the mail room;
the so-called "Greeters" at Walmart; the security guard that
patrols your gated community as you sleep; the day-laborers you see
everywhere these days; the "temps" that come in when there
is a staff shortage, and on and on and on. There are a lot more of them
than most people think, and they are everywhere these days.
And, of course, you won't see them when you get home after work. They
probably don't live in the neighborhoods you live in. But that doesn't
mean that they have disappeared into the ether somehow. They've gone
home too - but to what kind of a living situation?
Take a family living at the higher end of those who fall under the
poverty index (and I mean, the real one, not the phony one established
by the Bureau of Labor Statistics); for instance, a family that brings
home $18,000 a year. True, these people do not pay any income tax, but
they sure as heck pay social security and payroll taxes - so subtract
about $1,500 from the family's total HOUSEHOLD income; that leaves
$16,500 a year or $1,375 a month to live on for a family of four.
Even in the poorest areas, one is lucky to find an apartment for less
than $600.00 a month - so there goes almost 44 percent of the family's
take-home pay. Then suppose that even with food stamps, the family must
pay out-of-pocket grocery bills (including things like toilet paper,
cleaning supplies, health items, etc.) of another $250.00 a month; that
leaves $525 a month. Then throw in a bare minimum $150 for utilities
(phone, gas, and electricity), that leaves just $375 for all other expenses:
medical (and remember here, the "breadwinners" in this family
hold down only part time work, so they have no medical benefits), car
expenses (gas, oil, repair, insurance, etc.), bus fare, clothing (that's
a laugh), recreation (that's even more of a laugh), school supplies
for the two kids, and so on.
YOU TRY TO LIVE THIS WAY
You try to live this way! That's one out of every four
people in the United States who live like this - AND THEY ARE
WORKING!! - despite the attempt by the corporate media to paint
them all as welfare cheats, single mothers, drug pushers, etc. who somehow
or other deserve the fate that has overtaken them (and, again, remember,
there is no more welfare - get that into your head: THERE
IS NO MORE AFDC!). The attempt to label all these people as
"ner-do-wells" is nothing more than a bunch of hooey dreamt
up by the corporate elites to "justify" the presence of so
many poor in our midst by demonizing them.
Of course, many people who don't know any better will be tempted to
say that a great many of these people are "illegal aliens;"
they're not even citizens. But even if they're not citizens, so what?
But that's not true either! - the fact is, they are citizens!
At most, the so-called "illegal alien" population of this
country numbers about 7 million people - AT MOST!
That's only 2.8 percent of the total U.S. population! What about the
other 23.2 percent of the entire U.S. population that is living in poverty?
These people ARE American citizens - the same people that,
if there is any war, will be thrown into the battle first, long before
the sons and daughters of the "Yuppie Elite," just as they
were in Vietnam!
Finally, one needs to be clear about all this - the expectation is
that the number of poor in this country will keep on growing! A simple
glance at the trend the statistics paint with regard to the poor in
this country will confirm that. From 1977 to 1994, the poverty rate
in the United States increased by almost 20 percent. If that rate of
increase is maintained, by the year 2010, the amount of people living
in poverty in the United States will constitute 30 percent of the population.
THIRTY PERCENT! - a little short of one in three
people! Can you imagine?
THE TREND IN AVERAGE WEEKLY PAY
The ominous trend in the poverty rate is reinforced by what's been
happening to "Average Weekly Earnings" in the paychecks of
nonsupervisory workers for the past thirty years. According to the Bureau
of Labor Statistics, nonsupervisory workers constitute 80 percent
of all employees. These statistics exclude executives, managers, and
professionals such as doctors and lawyers, but include the vast majority
of the labor force. What this trend indicates is that real earnings
peaked at $315 a week in 1973 and since then have been on the decline,
falling nearly 30 percent in CONSTANT or REAL
dollars. This is what moved economist Wallace Peterson to call 1973
a watershed year that marked the beginning of today's "SILENT
DEPRESSION" - silent, as he puts it, because the deterioration
has been slow and insidious like a cancer, hardly noticed by either
the press or the people. And it is a DEPRESSION because
it has continued for so long.
Elite economists like to cite the growth of GDP and per capita income
to refute the facts presented above. But aggregate measurements such
as GDP and per capita income can be highly misleading in coming to grips
with what's really going on in average, everyday American households
because they lump the rising prosperity of a few rich families with
other people's incomes, which may or may not have risen. Thus, the aggregate
can rise when the incomes of a large majority have actually declined.
The aggregate income measures also become suspect when higher numbers
of people join the labor force or employees have to work longer hours.
For instance, suppose your income stays constant but you need to work
only half as many hours as before. You are now easily better off. You
are in a position to enjoy the so-called "good life." But
suppose your income rises by 5 percent while your working hours rise
by 20 percent. You will not be amiss in thinking you are worse off than
before even though your income has grown.
So, what does all this say? - it says that from both the standpoint
of falling weekly earnings, and the growing percentage of people who
are falling into poverty, we are fast approaching a time where fully
one-third of the population in this country will be poor. THAT'S
ONE-THIRD OF THE POPULATION! - and it doesn't matter whether
you run into these people on any kind of a daily basis or not - THEY
ARE THERE, WHETHER YOU SEE THEM OR NOT!
DEALING WITH THE "SURPLUS POPULATION"
It's here that the elites begin to run into a problem - and that problem
relates directly to how this "SURPLUS POPULATION"
created by the elites' economic programs - i.e., society's "THROW-AWAYS"
that America's "free trade" and "deindustrialization"
policies have created - can be contained and suppressed so that their
rage does not spill out into the general population and create disorder.
What the elites have done with regard to this "problem" is
precisely what they have done in their "CLIENT-STATES"
like Guatemala, Brazil, Argentina, Thailand, etc. (and those who think
that the elites differentiate between the poor in this country and the
poor in the "Third World," are greatly mistaken): they have
instituted a policy of TERROR against these people - i.e.,
against the country's "THROW-AWAY" population
- designed to frighten and intimidate them into submission and a quiet
acceptance of their "station in life" through the use of intensely
SAVAGE and very BRUTAL police techniques.
Now, no doubt, some people might be tempted to say that we are being
ALARMIST in the use of such terms - too SENSATIONAL.
But stop for a moment and think about what's happening here. For the
most part, the TERROR and INTIMIDATION that
is being used against this nation's "THROW-AWAY"
population is being used against them principally under the cover of
the "WAR ON DRUGS;" but does anyone really believe
that drug use in wealthy, white, suburban neighborhoods is any less
than drug use in poorer neighborhoods? I know of no studies that would
yield such a result. True, the rich are a little bit more discreet about
it - but should that really make any difference?
POLICE TACTICS AIMED AT AMERICA'S "SURPLUS POPULATION"
The fact is, there are very few suburban white kids (i.e., the sons
and daughters of the affluent) who haven't used drugs to some extent
by the time they have finished high school. But if that's so, why are
so very few arrests made in these neighborhoods? Why are only blacks,
Latinos, and "poor white trash" hauled downtown to jail or
to "Juvenile Hall?" If there is really a "WAR ON
DRUGS" going on in this country, why isn't this war being
carried out in the neighborhoods of the rich? Why only in the neighborhoods
of the poor?
Why don't we see the police storming into the houses of the wealthy?
Why don't we see the cars of the well-to-do being pulled over for broken
tail lights so that warrant checks can be run on them and their cars
checked for drugs? - after all, such police stops are nothing more than
a thinly veiled excuse for getting around the constitutional guarantees
against illegal searches. Why aren't sobriety check points (which have
in recent years become nothing more than another excuse to run unconstitutional
warrant checks) established in neighborhoods like River Oaks in Houston
or Simi Valley in Southern California? Why is it that we only see this
sort of thing occurring in the neighborhoods of this country's "THROW-AWAY"
If it's drugs the police are really after, then surely there are as
many drugs and "druggies" to be found in Beverly Hills as
there are to be found in Watts - and probably more if people are honest
about it. And if that's the case, why don't we see the same "WAR
ON DRUGS" with the same SWAT teams dressed in the same
black uniforms, wearing the same bulletproof vests, the same military-like
helmets, the same black ski masks, and armed with same AR-15s and MP-5s
and the same "blunt trauma ordinance" storming around in wealthy
neighborhoods as well as poorer neighborhoods? - after all, as we just
indicated, there are as many drugs and "druggies" to be found
in Beverly Hills as there are to be found in Watts. Everyone knows that!
And why is it that the police differentiate between powder cocaine (the
cocaine of the rich) and "crack" cocaine (the cocaine of the
poor)? Why do they treat possession of "crack" cocaine so
much harsher than possession of powder cocaine?
THE "WAR ON DRUGS" - THE FACADE BEHIND WHICH THE ELITES
CARRY ON THEIR WAR AGAINST THE POOR
It's because - in the end - the so-called "WAR ON DRUGS"
is not really about drugs and "addicts" at all! It's about
POPULATION CONTROL! And the "WAR ON DRUGS"
is nothing more than a convenient FRONT for what's really
going on! An excuse for TERRORIZING the nation's "THROW-AWAYS"
and keeping them "off-balance" and SUPPRESSED
through the use of very brutal police tactics - THE SAME KIND OF
POLICE TACTICS THAT THE COLOMBIAN GOVERNMENT USES AGAINST THE "FARC"
IN BOGOTA, OR THE PERUVIAN GOVERNMENT USES AGAINST THE "SHINING
PATH" IN PERU.
Christian Parenti, in his book, Lockdown America, gives a glimpse
of what America is like to the "THROW-AWAY"
portion of our population. The description he gives resembles what's
going on in many "Third World" countries where police and
para-military police forces patrol sections of Rio de Janeiro, Bogota,
Lima, Mexico City, Jarkata, etc. (i.e., those cities that constitute
the principle cities in America's system of "CLIENT-STATES")
not so much with an eye towards fighting crime (though that's what they
are pretending to be up to) as suppressing the "THROW-AWAYS"
that America's "New World Order" system has created there.
The object in all this is, as we just indicated, to cower the population
into submission, much in the way an occupying military force would "police"
a conquered city - the way, for example, the Germans "policed"
Prague, Paris and Warsaw during the Second World War, or the Americans
ran Saigon under the impress of the infamous "Phoenix Program"
during the Vietnam War, or the way the Algerian military controls Algiers
In instances like these, fighting crime is merely an excuse for
insinuating an overwhelming police presence into "ENEMY TERRITORY"
for purposes of population control. Intimidation is what these forces
are aiming at in areas like south-central Los Angeles, Harlem in New
York, and Annacostia in Washington D.C.; the police are not in these
communities to "serve and protect," as their minions in the
elite media would have you believe.
They are there to DOMINATE and TERRORIZE, and to prevent
these populations from crossing over the line from disorderly activity
(i.e., crime) to rebellion and insurrection; from embarking on what
the elites would believe is a malignant process of "transvaluation."
To demonstrate how these policies are being carried out in the neighborhoods
of America's "THROW-AWAY" population, Parenti
steered clear of big city underclass neighborhoods and chose instead
to focus on a relatively small town in the Central Valley of California,
believing that in doing so he could better illustrate how PERVASIVE
this kind of policing has become. Parenti picked Fresno, California;
specifically how Fresno police are policing an underclass neighborhood
of "THROW-AWAYS" in the town's sprawling southwest
There, on the pocked streets, among the stucco bungalows and dying
railyards, Parenti found what he was looking for: a massive para-military
police presence, the primary purpose of which was to DOMINATE
and TERRORIZE the "SURPLUS POPULATION"
of the Central Valley's huge agricultural operations - people who had
been deemed no longer necessary for the agri-business operations that
were now engaging "illegal aliens" to do the "heavy lifting."
"Illegals" are preferred to workers from Caesar Chavez's United
Farmworkers Union because they have no "legal" rights, are
not unionized (which the elites hate with a burning passion) and can,
therefore be worked much more savagely than can the workers from the
United Farmworkers Union.
AN EXAMPLE OF POLICING IN THE NEIGHBORHOODS
OF AMERICA'S "THROW-AWAY" POPULATION
Parenti describes an operation he witnessed personally one cold October
evening. It was carried out by Fresno's Violent Crime Suppression Unit
(VCSU): a special forces-type para-military team not unlike the kind
of para-military forces Peru's military deploys in the streets of Lima
or the Indonesian military deploys in the streets of Jarkata. Parenti
"Since 1994 these soldier-cops have been conducting the criminal
justice equivalent of 'search and destroy' missions in Fresno's 'gang-ridden'
badlands. 'It's a war', explains one police spokesman."
The use of this kind of police force - the kind that employs the
equipment, training, rhetoric, and group tactics of war - is typical
today in "THROW-AWAY" neighborhoods throughout
the country. In order to carry out this war, the Fresno Police Department
(FPD) has increased its force from 400 to 655 (on its way to a goal
of 800 by 2002), established a plethora of new special units, and introduced
new technology into every aspect of policing. Thanks to $28.4 million
in federal grants, the FPD will soon have the nation's latest "field
automation system," complete with electronic notepads which, using
cellular phone technology, can communicate with the brand new computers
in each patrol car. The computers in turn can communicate with, and
search, local, state, and federal databases, thus giving officers in
the field nearly instant access to mountains of intelligence, ranging
from outstanding warrants to DMV records.
Another gadget on the way is a portable, electronic, fingerprint reader.
With this Dick Tracy dream come true, police can check prints in the
field, then automatically and remotely search local, state, and federal
databases for matching prints, outstanding warrants, mug shots, and
other information. At the larger level of strategy Fresno will soon
be using its own version of the Vietnam-inspired "electronic battlefield"
for state-of-the-art, real-time, computerized crime mapping and deployment.
With this technology, Chief Winchester hopes to begin holding Comsat-style
meetings. This hybrid between Pentagon whiz-bang tech and New York QOL
policing is also being adopted by other departments around the country.
The Fresno VCSU is only one example of the more than 30,000
(that's THIRTY-THOUSAND!!) para-military Special Weapons
and Tactics (SWAT) teams that America's elites have deployed around
the country - again, not so much to "fight crime" (as they
pretend to be doing), but rather to suppress and intimidate America's
growing population of "THROW-AWAYS" the elites
no longer have a use for as they ship the factory jobs these populations
once depended on overseas to take advantage of even more disadvantaged
and compliant populations.
First developed by a young LAPD commander named Daryl Gates in 1966
to combat the kind of Civil Rights disorders that swept through the
country in the 1960s and early '70s, SWAT teams - also known as "tactical"
or para-military policing units - WERE CONCEIVED NOT AS CRIME-FIGHTING
UNITS BUT RATHER AS COUNTER-INSURGENCY UNITS AIMED AT GROUPS LIKE THE
BLACK PANTHERS, C.O.R.E., THE SYMBONESE LIBERATION ARMY, THE WEATHERMEN
(or Weather Faction, as it later came to be called), ETC. And make
no mistake about it, that's still what their job is today! As one early
SWAT officer explained,
"Those people out there - the radical and the revolutionaries
- are damned good at using shotguns, bombs or setting ambushes, so
we've got to be better at what we do."
"THAT IS WHAT MAKES THEM (i.e., the SWAT teams) FUNDAMENTALLY
DANGEROUS. IF POLICE ARE SOLDIERS INSTEAD OF CIVIL SERVANTS, AND THEIR
TASK IS DESTRUCTION AND CONQUEST, THEN IT FOLLOWS THAT THE
CIVILIAN COMMUNITY THEY ARE POLICING
(i.e., the underclass) WILL BE THE ENEMY."
Even the etymology of LA's initial tactical unit reveals a bellicose
world view. Gates started with the acronym SWAT - which
has both a violent and dehumanizing ring to it - and then filled it
in with the name "Special Weapons Attack Team." His superiors
saw this candid and robust name as a "bit too provocative,"
so they decided to change it to the more technical sounding "Special
Weapons and Tactics." Parenti continues with his description of
Fresno's SWAT or VCSU operation,
"A helicopter clatters overhead, sweeping its lights across
the shabby trees and flat homes. Nearby in the shadows, three squads
of ten police officers in combat boots, black fatigues, and body armor
lock and load their Heckler and Koch (H&K) MP-54 submachine guns
(the same weapons used by the elite Navy SEALs) and fan out through
"Dressed in black fatigues, military helmets, bulletproof vests,
ski masks, goggles, combat boots, and armed with AR-15s, MP-5s, attack
dogs, 'flash-bang' stun grenades, smoke bombs, tear gas, pepper spray,
metal clubs, and less-than-lethal 'blunt trauma ordinances', the SWAT
team patrols the southwest almost every day ... Their immediate task
was to round up a list of some 300 suspected ... offenders ... The
enemy was to be tracked down, busted, and put away for as long as
possible. The operation involved raiding homes, stopping cars, interrogating
'suspicious persons', and storming an archipelago of 'hot spot' corners."
THE WAR OF THE "HAVES" AGAINST THE "HAVE NOTS"
Now, stop here for a moment and think about it - and be honest as you
do so!! Can anyone possible imagine these kinds of tactics being used
in the neighborhoods of the wealthy? - especially given the fact that
these "sweeps" often have little to do with advanced intelligence
directed at specific targets chosen in advance, despite what some of
the propaganda emanating from programs like "Crime Stoppers,"
"America's Most Wanted," "Unsolved Mysteries," etc.
- all of which glorify the tactics of America's SWAT teams and DEMONIZE
the poor - would have you believe, or does anyone believe that the police
officers who pumped 42 bullets into Diallo in New York City, or the
roving bands of rogue police officers at the Ramparts division of the
LAPD were out on the streets as the result of a well-thought-out plan
involving advanced intelligence aimed at specific targets?
No! - for the most part, these units are deployed exactly as Parenti
describes above - as roving units aimed at "TARGETS OF OPPORTUNITY!"
- targets of opportunity picked out using a plethora of thinly veiled
ways around the constitutional protection against illegal stops, such
as stopping cars for "unsafe lane changes" and busting people
for just standing around because of "suspicious behavior."
"The street corner raids usually began with officers tossing
'flash-bang' grenades (designed to stun and disorient suspects), then
swooping in with barking dogs and guns drawn as they bellowed orders
to 'get the f--k down'. Civilian-owned pit bulls, Rottweilers and
Dobermans were shot on sight, while EVERYONE in the
targeted area was forced to the ground at gunpoint. As one team of
ten VCSU officers established an armed perimeter, another team would
train guns on prostrate 'bad guys', while a third team would take
photos, conduct 'field interviews', run warrant checks, note tattoos,
scars, clothing, distinguishing characteristics', addresses, and add
new intelligence into local, state, and federal databases from the
mobile computer terminals in each patrol car. Prisoners were carted
out in a huge gray bus, with SWAT emblazoned on the side, that police
likened to a rolling billboard.
"Lately VCSU foot sweeps have been less common. The unit now
prefers to roam the south side in regular patrol cars, "like
a wolf pack" looking for "contact." This is due in
large part to declining narco-commerce in Fresno's hot spots. Police
and local ethnographers credit the relative calm to the mass internment
of a whole generation of Ogs (original gangsters) and mid-level players
(i.e., all those who might possess leadership capabilities and who
could form the nexus of an urban guerrilla warfare movement), who
are now serving infinities of time in state prison on second and third-strike
charges, or in federal joints under the federal government's mandatory
minimum sentencing guidelines. And as [these people (i.e., those who
possess leadership capabilities) are taken off the street and] ...
buried in human landfills, the VCSU's attention necessarily turns
to less and less threatening behavior.
"It's almost midnight and the Central Valley is getting cold.
A typical VCSU operation is underway. The target is a brightly lit
gas station, known for dealing and surrounded by barren waste ground
just outside a rundown suburban ghetto called 'the Dog Pound'. As
the first cruiser approaches, six young African American men on the
corner start moving away: that's suspicious behavior, probable cause
for a stop. Half the group slips into the dark, three are stopped.
More cruisers pull up at high speed, cops pile out and surround the
scene, a K-9 team unloads its barking Alsatian. The young men stiffen
with fear, hands on their heads, facing the high beams of the police
cruisers. Then it's down on the ground, legs out in front, crossed.
The field interviews and frisking begin, scars are noted. IDs checked.
From a patrol car terminal an officer runs warrant searches through
the local Fresno PD database, the California Law Enforcement Teletype
System (CLETS), and the FBI's all-encompassing NCIC.
"'Bingo', says a crew-cut trooper. One of the youths is wanted;
he is cuffed, placed under arrest, his pager and keys taken, and he
is stuffed into the back of a squad car. Next call. A unit has 'contact'
on the far end of the Dog Pound, and on foot an individual has fled
the scene of a traffic stop, entering a nearby house; VCSU cars surge
towards the action. While the occupants of the car are dealt with,
the VCSU officers with AR-15s and H&K MP-54s surround the area
and 'holding the perimeter', some look at the house, others look out
at the community. A line of five officers rush the door. Technically
they are not in hot pursuit and have no right to storm the building,
but they look angry and their guns make it seem serious, so the elderly
woman behind the black metal security gate quickly consents to a search.
Five big, white cops move into the blue-cathode-ray lit room and grab
a black man named David. 'What? Man, I didn't do anything!' he protests.
His voice breaks and a tearful grimace momentarily clouds his face.
"As police begin searching the small home, with consent from
a trembling grandmother, it appears as if the past has suddenly lurched
forward and collided with a high-tech future. More than anything else
the VCSU robocops resemble the 'patrollers' of the old South, the
white, slave-catcher militias that spent their nights rousting Black
people's shacks in search of contraband, weapons, and signs of escape.
"'Are you on parole, probation? What? Huh? Let's go outside,
David'. The man is cuffed, searched, interrogated, forced to the ground,
warrants checked, flashlights continually shone in his face. No drugs
found. But David lied, said he wasn't on parole and he is. 'That's
a violation of parole, David'. Another black man arrested and packed
off to jail.
"More 'contacts' produce three ounces of crack - a huge bust.
'He didn't signal, had an air freshener hanging from his rear-view
mirror, so we pulled him over. He didn't have ID. So we searched'.
Boom - the white cops take another black man to jail. Then the radios
crackle: 'Code three at 621 South ...' An officer needs help. The
VCSU's fleet of Crown Victorias race towards the action.
"A youth reportedly brandished a gun (not a crime unless there
is a victim being threatened) and has sped off to his mother's house.
The radios crackle again: '1010, deploy units in the alley'. The house
is surrounded by the whole VCSU. From behind cars, officers train
AR-15s, MP-5s, and the larger MP-54s on the front door and in the
windows. Overhead a chopper beats the air, flooding the house with
light and scanning the area with Forward Looking Infrared (FLIR).
Gathering neighbors are kept at bay by detachments of regular Fresno
PD officers. A CHP officer and several armed DA investigators arrive
on the scene, guns drawn, and crouch dramatically behind vehicles.
Because the person who reported the crime was not themselves threatened
by the gun, the VCSU has no probable cause to enter the house, and
so the stand-off continues.
"The FPD helicopter overhead runs short on fuel and sweeps back
to gas-up, as a bigger, louder CHP chopper takes its place pouring
down an even brighter klieg light. (In a few months the choppers will
have the capacity to send live video and FLIR feed or freeze-frame
maps from the air directly to the eleven-inch screens of the VSCU's
brand-new in-car 'mobile data terminals'.)
"From the door emerges a Latino teenager, hands in the air,
tears streaming down his face. He walks slowly toward the bristling
mot of white cops and into the blinding lights. Behind him comes a
young woman and two small children. After them an older woman in slippers
and curlers. But the suspect, Juan, stays inside, phone off the hook.
Desk jockeys from probation - until a few years ago, unarmed bureaucrats
- are now hovering at the elbow of the VCSU commanding officer. The
probation wannabes are eager for action, wearing jeans, bulletproof
vests, and blue windbreakers and toting radios, cuffs, and Smith and
Wesson .44 automatics. Juan is on their list so they have the right
to storm his home without permission, probable cause, or a warrant."
THESE ARE THE TACTICS OF A TERRORIST STATE
These are the tactics of a terrorist state - and they have been introduced
into the United States by the same elites that pioneered them in Guatemala,
El Salvador, Brazil, Thailand, the Philippines and countless other nations
in America's "CLIENT-STATE" system. These are
not the tactics one uses in a REAL democracy. These are
the tactics one can expect to find in a Central American oligarchy;
the strategies one would expect to see in countries where democracy
is nothing more than a sham, and where the government is held in power
at the point of a gun. These are the methodologies of a regime that
can maintain itself only by violently suppressing vast portions of the
population, coupled with "rigging" the political process,
manipulating the press, and instituting policies reminiscent of George
Orwell's world of "Big Brother."
And insofar as Orwell's "Newspeak," is concerned, it is already
far advanced in the United States, and so much so that James Peck, in
his introduction to the Chomsky Reader, could say that -
"... there is a pervasive, omnipresent ideological process of
INDOCTRINATION that permeates American life, makes us
immune to the suffering all around us, and BLINDS US TO WHAT
IS ALL TOO OBVIOUS."
Yes! - this is "Newspeak," and the elites are "into
it" with all their might. Take Walter Lippmann, a member of the
elite class, and his comments about the necessity of "the MANUFACTURE
of consent" - by which he meant "educating" (to put
it facetiously) the "brutish masses" in such a way that they
would come "naturally," as it were, to the belief that the
interests of the elites were their interests also - EVEN IF THOSE
INTERESTS MEANT CONSIGNING A GREAT PORTION OF THEM TO PAUPERISM AND
INDIGENCE? Isn't that what Edward Bernays (likewise a member of
the elite) called "the ENGINEERING of consent?"
Isn't that what Harold Laswell - like both Lippmann and Bernays, also
a card-carrying member of the elite - cynically meant when he talked
about "mass indoctrination" as a means of "DISCIPLINING"
the rabble? Of course it is!! AND IF THAT'S THE CASE, HOW MUCH OF
A DEMOCRACY IS THERE LEFT IN THE UNITED STATES? Not much!
Nonetheless, so subtle is this process of indoctrination that most
Americans hardly recognize the process for what it is, and that's what
makes it so much different from the mechanisms of indoctrination that
were at work in the old Soviet Union or those that are at work even
now in countries like Iraq and Communist China - mechanisms which were
(are) relatively simple and quite transparent.
The fact is, while people in countries like these are expected to
parrot the official "party line" and stay within the proscribed
boundaries of political and intellectual expression, these same people,
nonetheless, fairly well understand the difference between what is state-sponsored
"propaganda" and what is "truth." Not so in
the United States!
In the United States, the mechanisms of indoctrination, as we have
already indicated, are very different, and much more subtle and indirect.
Nonetheless, the delicate nature of these mechanisms does not in any
way detract from their effectiveness, and by now the omnipresence of
the message these techniques have been created to convey to the "masses"
in our society is so all-encompassing and universal that one falls victim
to its message without ever realizing it. And so a situation is created
where even reasonable people have a difficult time understanding the
difference between what is state-sponsored "propaganda" and
what is "truth" - a situation that is totally at variance
with what the populations in the old Soviet Union had to put up with.
WHERE IS DEMOCRACY IN ALL THIS?
Where is there here any room for democracy - REAL democracy?
There is none - at least insofar as the poor and the near-poor are concerned.
This is the point the student demonstrators were trying to make in Seattle,
in Washington D.C., in Philadelphia, in Los Angeles, in Quebec City.
Democracy - REAL democracy - is fast disappearing from
the cultural and political landscape, and is being replaced by a corporate
oligarchy - a plutocracy (rule of the rich) run by General Electric,
Viacom, Ford, DuPont, Microsoft, 3M, General Motors, Cargil, Exxon,
Sun Microsystems, Boeing, Netscape, Bank of America, etc.
THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN STATE-SPONSORED RELIGION AND THE ELITES
It's exactly here that we should remind ourselves of a point we made
early on in this article regarding the relationship between democracy
and religion: RELIGION IS IMPORTANT TO THE STATE IN INVERSE
PROPORTION TO THE STATE'S UNDEMOCRATIC NATURE. The more undemocratic
the state, the greater the need for its lraders to undergird their rule
by a resort to religion. When democracy becomes an open sham, as it
is fast becoming in the United States, and the elites are no longer
able to rely on the "will of the people" as the basis of their
legitimacy, religion becomes their "fall-back" position -
the only means left to them of legitimizing their rule. The elite response
here is to cynically substitute the "will of God"
for the "will of the people."
It is, therefore, no accident or fluke of history that WHEREVER
SOCIETIES FIND THEMSELVES UNABLE TO RELY ON THE "WILL OF THE
PEOPLE" TO LEGITIMIZE THEIR EXISTENCE, RELIGION HAS STEPPED INTO
THE GAP TO FILL THAT FUNCTION. It is not without reason, therefore,
that the rich in this country - ESPECIALLY THOSE PEOPLE AND CORPORATIONS
CONNECTED TO THE "ESTABLISHMENT WING" OF THE REPUBLICAN PARTY
- have found it convenient to "GET RELIGION." That's
what the rich have always done! - though they care not a whit for it.
Some people might object here! - what about communism? Surely that
system of government is undemocratic. And that's true! Nonetheless,
communism always insisted that it's legitimacy did indeed flow from
the consent of the governed, and that the so-called "DICTATORSHIP
of the proletariat" was nothing more than an interim phase
that would be replaced as soon as the "emergency situation"
brought about by the aggression of the capitalist system had been dealt
with. Of course, that was nothing more than a farce, and as time wore
on, it was exposed for what it really was - a myth! a fantasy! As a
result, it all came tumbling down! Communism - because it embodied atheism
- afforded the elites of that system no back-up position; no way of
defending their prerogatives once they were exposed as operating outside
the "will of the people," and that the so-called "DICTATORSHIP
of the proletariat" was nothing more than a convenient fiction
designed to excuse the fact that the communist elite did not enjoy the
And so we repeat our premise: WHEREVER SOCIETIES FIND THEMSELVES
UNABLE TO RELY ON THE "WILL OF THE PEOPLE" TO LEGITIMIZE THEIR
EXISTENCE, RELIGION HAS STEPPED INTO THE GAP TO FILL THAT FUNCTION.
And if, per chance, a government is unable to draw upon religion
to fulfill this function, it will collapse, just as the governments
of the old Soviet Union and Eastern Europe did.
But when Christianity allows itself to be used in this fashion - when
it allows the elites (in this case, the "capitalist elites")
to legitimize their rule through the church, when it becomes an instrument
of these elites (i.e., the rich) to oppress the poor, when it becomes
the servant of the state rather than the servant of heaven - IT HAS
BECOME APOSTATE. That is what apostasy is all about! - AT
LEAST IN THE FIRST INSTANCE!!. That's where, as we indicated
earlier, it all begins! The false doctrine that inevitably follows this
condition of things - i.e., apostasy - is made necessary to mold the
church to its new reality as a servant to the rich rather than to the
poor; as a servant to the elites rather than to the downtrodden; as
a servant to the state rather than to the kingdom of heaven. After all,
as we suggested early on, what do the elites want with true Christianity,
a Christianity whose Originator says:
"LAY NOT UP FOR YOURSELVES TREASURES UPON THE EARTH
..." (Matt. 6:19) ?
Or what good is a religion to the elites that would tell the rich -
"... If thou wilt be perfect, GO SELL (ALL) THAT THOU HAST,
AND GIVE IT TO THE POOR ..." (Matt. 19:21) ?
And finally, what do the elites want with a religion that says -
"... LOVE YOUR ENEMIES, DO GOOD TO THEM WHICH HATE YOU,
"Bless them that curse you, and pray for them which despitefully
use you." (Luke 6:27-28) ?
No! - such verses must be "RE-INTERPRETED!"
- and it is this "reinterpretation" of the Scriptures that
leads to apostasy. We repeat: THAT'S WHERE APOSTASY BEGINS!!
- as an effort to make the Scriptures conform to the church's "new"
role of legitimizing state power, and validating the rich in their suppression
of the poor.
CHRISTIANITY AS A PARTNER OF THE RICH
Christianity as a partner of the elites! - of course,
this is nothing new insofar as American Christianity is concerned. It
has been sponsored in America's "CLIENT-STATE"
system for a very long time by such groups as the Rockefeller Foundation,
Swift and Co., the Olin Foundation, Occidental Oil, etc., AND THE
RESULT TO TRUE CHRISTIANITY - TO THE CHRISTIANITY OF THE HUMBLE
CARPENTER OF NAZARETH [of whom the Bible spoke: "Foxes have
holes, and birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not
where to lay his head" (Luke 9:58)] - HAS BEEN DISASTROUS!!
Take, for example, the way the Wycliffe Bible Translators have allowed
themselves to be used by the corporate elites and the CIA in America's
system of South American "CLIENT STATES" as
"pamphleteers," as "information gatherers," and
as "fronts" for the CIA. And then there's the way that Christian
missionaries allowed themselves to be used as "toadies" by
the Calero brothers, Enrique Bermudez, Oliver North, Elliot Abrams,
etc. in Reagan's Contra War - an effort that totally duped people like
Pat Robertson, Tim LaHaye, and such "Seed Faith" luminaries as Larry
Lea, Cubie Ward, Phil Derstein (who is closely associated with Oral
Roberts) and various others of that ilk - people who could with Paralife
evangelist John Steer (who spent a short time as a pastor to Salvadoran
government soldiers and "Death Squad" functionaries) make
the bizarre and hideous statement that -
"Killing for the joy of it is wrong, but killing ... against an anti-Christ
system ... (is) not only right but the duty of every Christian."
This is the "stuff" that turns countless numbers of the poor
off to Christianity! But these kinds of repugnant statements - statements
that support murder and slaughter in the name of Christ - are what inevitably
follow in the wake of the church's partnership with the elites. This
is what happens when the elites partner with the church in order to
legitimize their rule as "from God."
The "Scripture-twisting" that is necessary to justify the
Christianity of a John Steer, or the Calero brothers, or Enrique Bermudez,
or Oliver North, or Cubie Ward, or Phil Derstein, etc. is beyond being
AND NOW THIS HATEFUL PARTNERSHIP BETWEEN RELIGION (i.e., Christianity)
AND POLITICS IS BEGINNING TO INSINUATE ITSELF INTO THE UNITED STATES
- and just as "TERRORIST-STATE" activity was
carried out in the name of "right religion" in America's system
of "CLIENT-STATES," so also is it being carried
out now in this country under the same name.
And while the "cover story" that is being used to justify
the elite's terrorist activity is not the "war against communism,"
but rather the "WAR ON DRUGS," it's still the
same thing. Different names; but the script and players remain the same!
- a war carried on by the elites using the church as a "cover"
against the poor.
THE RICH HAVE DECLARED WAR ON THE POOR
The rich have declared war on the poor, AND EVANGELICAL CHRISTIANS
ARE IN GRAVE DANGER OF FINDING THEMSELVES ON THE WRONG SIDE OF
THIS CONFLICT, just as they have been on the wrong side in America's
system of CLIENT-STATES" - and there are grave implications
in all this for the Gospel. After all, it's NOT the rich
who are open to the Gospel (though they often make a pretense of being
so), it's the poor, or do we think that the Bible says in vain,
"... NOT many wise men after the flesh, NOT
many mighty, NOT many noble, are called:
"But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound
the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound
the things which are mighty;
"And base things of the world, and things which are despised,
hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought
things that are ..." (1 Cor. 1:26-28) ?
Listen! I tell you the truth; bear this carefully in mind! Wherever
the church makes common cause with the elites and with the state, apostasy
is not far behind! The question, then, that begs to be answered is this:
what's that say about the alliance between today's evangelical church
and the "Establishment Wing" of the Republican Party? It means
that those who involve themselves in this alliance may someday be declared
APOSTATES by Him to Whom we must all someday give an account.
Until then, God bless you all!
S. R. Shearer
We need your help to spread the word concerning Antipas Ministries and the
eschatological viewpoint it represents; WE NEED YOUR
HELP BECAUSE WE DO NOT "LINK" WITH OTHER SO-CALLED "CHRISTIAN"
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insofar as their loyalty to the United States is concerned
- a loyalty that has made them partners in the BLOODY
trail the American military has left in its TERROR-RIDDEN
rampage throughout the world, as well as making them partners
in the abject poverty that American corporations have
imposed on the peoples and nations the American military
machine has ravaged - A BLOODY, TERROR-RIDDEN RAMPAGE
THAT HAS TO A LARGE DEGREE BEEN CARRIED OUT IN THE NAME
OF THE "PRINCE OF PEACE." [Please see our articles,
"The Third World
as a Model for the New World Order," Inside
the American New World Order System" and "The
American Empire: The Corporate / Pentagon / CIA / Missionary
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