It’s All a Grand Plan (swallow this post after you read it!)- A Blast From The past from November 2013
So two days ago a friend sent me this “quote”:
“America is like a healthy body and its resistance is threefold: its patriotism, its morality, and its spiritual life. If we can undermine these three areas, America will collapse from within.” – Josef Stalin
It appears it has been all over face book. It seemed wrong to me. I mean, it appeared on the order of “Ninety percent of quotes on the internet are wrong,” George Washington.
What appeared PARTICUARLY wrong was, so to say, the “psychology” of the quote. It’s clearly how some Americans view America, but is it how Josef Stalin would see it?
Let’s leave aside the whole question of how much he believed in communism or whether he did. He was a psychopath, but that doesn’t mean he didn’t dress his wishes in some form of ideology, and if he did it was communism. If he believed in communism, the idea that America was “moral” is right out. In fact, we know he had this idea that America just pretty much was promiscuously commercial from his quote about selling us a rope. (And that one sounds real.)
In any case, whether he believed in communism or not, he would not say that aloud if he believed it. Think how bad it would be for someone continuously denouncing us for that criminally evil regime – capitalism – to say we were moral.
Besides, children, veddy bad news, but despite our puritan streak, no one in the rest of the world views us as moral. Mostly because we’re more open at our weirdness than they are. It’s like a friend tells me the Japanese are in general very straight-laced, which is why their porn is so wild. But HERE we get the porn and the tentacle anime and… and we assume that Japanese is a seething mass of bizarre and sex. That’s sort of how the rest of the world sees us. If you start an internet rumor that a fad of putting goldfish in your ears for sexual satisfaction is spreading in America, they’ll believe it. And they would probably even more so when murderous uncle Joe was alive.
The “America is a healthy body” is also something he would not say aloud. Because again, whether he believed communism or not, that was what they were selling to the masses, and in communist doctrine no capitalist country is healthy as such. (It’s in conflict, in contradiction, just waiting to be transitioned, you might say.)
Then we have “its spiritual life” – oh, BROTHER. Let alone that communists are atheists, and that there is a good chance Stalin saw his god in front of the shaving mirror every morning… Even if he subscribed to the idea that a spiritual life of some sort was good, he would look at us and think we had none.
Look, it’s unfair. It’s like our being the prudes that everyone else thinks are the class sluts, because we wear makeup and our skirt is a bit short (meaning we don’t pretend to be holier than thou) but as much as America is more religious than other Western countries, measurably, statistically, this is NOT how the world sees us. They see our multitude of religions. If you’re devout, how can you be friends with people who believe differently? Clearly, you’re not devout. They see our crazier manifestations – and that’s mostly what they see there, the snake handling sects, the spiritist sects, and then the fake churches like the idiots who picket soldiers funerals. It’s mostly what they see because it’s what their media finds “interesting” – and they think of our religion, here in America as somewhere between a carnival and a freak show.
Why would someone viewing that think of it as a strength? It would be more “Keep those crazy americans busy with their crazy religions, they’re less likely to believe we’re infiltrating.”
Of all of that only patriotism makes sense, since communism is an international creed and us such believes that undermining patriotism is essential to its spread.
So, yes, I went to snopes and the quote is fake. Or at least “likely fake.” (Trust me, it’s fake.)
Which bring us to why I spent so much time analyzing it. No, it’s not to inure you about future bad quotes. They will go around, and all of us will fall for some of them sometime.
The reason I spent so much time introducing this is that when I went to Snopes, I found this listed under one particular kind of lie. The “The enemy is so clever” lie.
We’ve seen this with the Russians far too much and all through my life. “They’re so clever, that they engineered this and that and the other thing.” “They’re so brilliant, this is happening just according to their plan.”
Guys, take a deep breath, step back. If this is all according to their plan, it’s the only plan of theirs that ever went right. I mean, seriously, they couldn’t feed their own homeland with all those five years plans, but they can do a near hundred year plan to take over the rest of the world?
But Sarah, you’ll say, you say we’re still suffering from the effects of Soviet agit prop!
Oh, sure we are, but agit prop is not a careful plan. Look, communism is very good at proselytizing. Arguably it’s the one thing it’s good at. It hits, like all other communitarian doctrines, the part of the human brain that’s both looking for “fair” and longing for a return to childhood, with benevolent overseeing parents.
Put enough agit prop over there (and they put a lot) and some of it is going to hit and corrupt the vision of other countries. Besides, communism is so tailor made for intellectuals, explaining how things would be better if the intelligentsia ruled us.
BUT that is not a plan. Not unless it’s in the sense of “we do this, and this just might happen.” Witness for instance, that a plan would have come to fruition much earlier – like, before the USSR collapsed. Also, people that good at planning would have made sure that their system worked. (It is one of the funniest things about communism that they are central planners, but their plans never work. Okay, funny in a bitter way. I’m not laughing at the mass graves their delusions have caused.
There is a tendency to look at trends we don’t like in society and things that aid ideologies we don’t approve of, and think that it’s all a fiendish plan.
Both sides do it. The left looked at the tea parties and panicked, because it doesn’t fit their conceptual universe for people to protest high taxes. So they invented the boogey man of the Koch brothers (rather libertarian old bachelors whom a friend who worked for them assured me are very nice.)
Soros is not on the same level – because, well, we KNOW he finances all sorts of left causes (and given his history, anyone who thinks he’s one the side of angels and works for causes he endorses, should think again. Once you sell out your own people as a kid, well… you’re done, morally speaking. Particularly when you still brag about it as an old man.) And he has more money than the Kochs ever did.
But does that mean it’s all his “plan”? Is it all going according to his plan? Oh, please, guys – OWS. No, seriously. OWS. Yes, we all saw the ads on Craigslist, but nowhere did it say “must poop on police cars” okay?
He’s a man who wants to see the world burn and to that end tosses a lot of money at various disruptive causes. But he does not have a detailed plan, and everything does not go according to his plan, or you’d be looking at his face in a big screen every morning, while you did your mandated exercises. (Big Soros is watching you. Ick.)
Here’s the thing and the reason I don’t believe in the “conspiracy theory of history” except in the sense that some humans will look for power, and that the way they do it is always predictable: humans are strange.
No, seriously, humans are strange. There has never been a satisfactory enough theory to the way the individual human mind works. Oh, somewhat… but each school of psychology has hold of an end and no one has the full elephant. Which is why psychology remains a semi-soft science.
This simplifies somewhat when you have a crowd, but it’s still not conclusive. And when you have something like a country, which is a conglomerate of crowds… well…
History takes sudden turns, precipitated by events and one or two odd individuals in a crowd who don’t react the way you expect. “Scientific history” is poppycock. If it weren’t, the United States wouldn’t exist.
Yes, it is all explainable in retrospect, how we came to be. It’s easy to make up just-so stories about the past.
I doubt there’s ever been a human plan that worked, throughout history, and those of us who believe in a divine plan also believe it has taken some weird turns to accommodate us. Or as grandma would say “G-d writes straight on crooked lines.” (Or for those of you don’t believe, yes, those could be “just so” stories too, but if it’s all the same with you, I’ll throw my lot in with grandma. You see, I knew her, and I trust her judgement.)
We’re not G-d. Yes, I know. Very upsetting. But we’re not. This means that any plan that takes more than a generation will take some very weird turns, go sideways, and slide upside down, in the game of telephone that’s multi-generational belief.
Take for instance old Joe’s supposed quote above. Even if it had been true, could he have predicted the effect of a massive demographic bulge on American culture which did most of the loosening of said culture? I doubt it. I think the man had a talent for killing and terror, but no demonstrable intelligence otherwise.
Then why are we attributing G-d like intelligence to him?
Well, both because it puts the other side in the light of traitors and because it means we can’t do anything – see how comfortable that is? We can’t do anything, so why try? We can be absolute lumps and lecture all our friends still trying to turn things around and save us from a crash with “You fools. It’s been planned for decades. There’s nothing you can do.” Which is very comfortable and morally superior.
I see it all the time, even now, even from respectable thinkers, about the deblacle that is Obama Care. “They planned this all. It’s all incredibly smart. Game over, man.”
Oh, please. You don’t need to drink their ink. No one in their right mind could have planned that insanity. Did they plan for the plan to collapse into single payer? Surely. But not by the sheer incompetence of governmental administration.
We’re well outside their plan, guys. They’re the gang that can’t shoot straight. No, this doesn’t mean they’re completely ineffective. They’re very good at destruction and destruction is half of their job. BUT it means when their plan goes wrong (and it always does) there is an opening for us to come in, to save things, to fix things, to make things work the way we want.
Will it go exactly according to plan for us? Oh, heck no. BUT we can push it in the right direction and keep working.
We’re good at working and at building.
This morning, I got up and I cleaned poop from the hallway. Our geriatric cat is having diarrhea.
Being a conservative/libertarian is sort of like that. You’re always cleaning poop you didn’t make. And you don’t want to, because you have no interest in power over others. But if you just leave it there, someone will slip on it and make a bigger mess.
It’s not a plan. It’s just that you know where the spray cleaner is, and the paper towels, so you do it. And you change what would otherwise have happened.
Be of good cheer. Destruction is not a plan and incompetence is not a destination.
Giving up would be premature and despair is a sin. In the long run, destroyers always lose, and you always need the person who knows where the cleaner is kept and how to use the paper towels.
Square your shoulders and be alert. You, those you love, and perhaps the entire country depend on you. This is not time to go wobbly.