Judicial Appointments

Judicial Appointments
by JBS President Emeritus John F. McManus

There are approximately 150 federal district and appeals court vacancies in the nation. Although President Trump has appointed and gained Senate approval for more than two dozen justices, the number of vacancies has risen. A few weeks ago, Mr. Trump made note of the many holes in the judicial branch while promising speedy action to deal with the problem.

US Supreme Court, Image from Wikimedia Commons by UpstateNYer (Matt H. Wade), CC BY-SA 3.0.

In mid-March, Mr. Trump discussed his opportunity to reshape U.S. courts when he told a gathering of Ohio supporters of his intention to make good appointments. “We’re going all out,” he said. He described his opportunity to fill many vacant federal judicial posts as a “gift from heaven [that is] world-changing, country-changing, USA-changing.”

Especially needing attention are vacancies that have arisen in the San Francisco-based Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Notorious for its damaging leftist rulings, the Ninth Circuit has jurisdiction over nine states: Alaska, Hawaii, Washington, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Nevada, Arizona, and California. Numerous Ninth Circuit rulings have bedeviled not only the nine states where this court holds sway but the entire nation has been affected. One of this court’s leading leftists, Judge Stephen Reinhardt, passed away on March 29. His vacant seat and seven more vacancies in the 29-member Ninth Circuit, present Mr. Trump with a golden opportunity to move the nation’s most activist and leftist court toward a more conservative and constitutional stance.

Nominating federal judges is, of course, only the first of two steps to have a new judge seated. The Senate must approve a nominee. In the past, senators could block a nomination via a filibuster that would take 60 votes to overcome – a difficult hurdle. But, during the Obama administration, the Senate weakened and effectively killed the filibuster process. Now only a majority will be needed to gain approval.

The Senate has also cancelled a process known as “blue slip” blockage of a judicial nominee. It allowed a senator to block approval of an appointee who resides in his or her state. A simple placing of a nominee’s name on a “blue slip” and presenting it to the Judiciary Committee Chairman was sufficient to kill nomination. But current Judiciary Committee Chairman Senator Charles Grassley (R-Iowa) has announced that he will not honor the use of this practice by any senator who might wish to block approval of a particular nominee. Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) had already stated her intention to issue a blue slip for any Trump nominee she finds objectionable. But the Grassley move will likely terminate permanently the issuance of the infamous blue slips.

Prospects for Mr. Trump to dramatically alter the stance of the notoriously leftist Ninth Circuit and other federal courts have raised concerns among California liberals. Dean Erwin Chemerinsky who leads the University of California (Berkeley) School of Law considered deceased Justice Reinhardt his ideological equal. He now sees future setbacks for liberal judicial dominance, especially in the Ninth Circuit. Chemerinsky has stated, “With a Republican Senate and no possibility of a filibuster, [Donald Trump] can have whoever he wants on the circuit court.” He expects a “dramatic change in the Ninth Circuit.”

President Trump has an opportunity to markedly improve adherence to the rule of law throughout the nation. He should be encouraged by many Americans to do so.

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McManus_2Mr. McManus served in the U.S. Marine Corps in the late 1950s and joined the staff of The John Birch Society in August 1966. He has served various roles for the organization including Field Coordinator, Director of Public Affairs, and President. Mr. McManus has appeared on hundreds of radio and television programs and is also author of a number of educational DVDs and books. Now President Emeritus, he continues his involvement with the Society through public speaking and writing for this blog, the JBS Bulletin, and The New American.


Martin Luther King Doesn’t Deserve Adulation

Martin Luther King Doesn’t Deserve Adulation
by JBS President Emeritus John F. McManus

Earlier this month, a flood of reminders about the death of Martin Luther King (shown on right) 50 years ago arrived, as all elements of the mass media told Americans about the anniversary of a gunman killing this paragon of virtue and bravery on April 4, 1968. The reports insisted that King was the nation’s most eminent apostle of nonviolence, a heroic advocate of peace in our nation’s racially turbulent era, and an exponent of all virtues. The truth is that King was a highly flawed individual whose actual strategy for change wasn’t peace. The strategy he relied on consisted mainly of a process he had learned from known communists, whose indisputable goal was the destruction of our nation.

Martin Luther King Jr. addresses a crowd. Image from Wikimedia Commons, public domain.

Mrs. Julia Brown, who went undercover for the FBI for more than nine years as a member of the Communist Party in Cleveland, Ohio, gives a testament to Martin Luther King, Jr.’s connection to the Communist Party:

I learned many surprising things while I served in the Communist Party for the FBI. Communist leaders told us about the demonstrations that would be started, the protest marches, the demands that would be made for massive federal intervention.

… Wherever we went and whatever we did, we were to promote race consciousness and resentment, because the Communists know that the technique of divide and conquer really works.

We were also told to promote Martin Luther King, to unite Negroes and whites behind him, and to turn him into some sort of national hero.

Because there were individuals who didn’t want their community disturbed by parades, demonstrations, and confrontations, they were easy to provoke, and King’s people did provoke them. As history has shown, King’s on-the-scene allies — often nonresidents of the targeted area — would frequently gather local individuals and provoke fistfights, head cracking, and other forms of violent behavior. In numerous instances, the King-led team supplied trained agitators to stir up the mayhem. (This, of course, does not excuse any violent behavior — whether provoked by MLK’s recruits or caused by genuine racists.) The goal of the manufactured turmoil was federal legislation imposing increasing amounts of government control over the entire nation.

With the help of dishonest media reporters who failed to report King’s strategy, new laws enhancing federal power were indeed enacted. King’s effectiveness in building socialistic government won him plaudits from left-wing politicians and lazy or complicit media stalwarts.

Soon, however, to stave off trouble, courageous black Americans began to arrive in targeted cities prior to the marches and demonstrations planned by King. They would explain King’s strategy to blacks and whites so well that the sought-after violence never materialized. Several communities in Virginia, North Carolina, and Georgia benefited greatly after the King strategy had been explained and the planned confrontations were called off. Julia Brown, Leonard Patterson, Lolabelle Holmes, and other patriotic black Americans told worried residents of the King-targeted regions — both black and white — what to expect and how to avoid violent protests that would ruin their communities and harm their residents. Their extremely effective warnings led to the cancellation of King’s plans in many areas.

King was no pacifist, rather he had received training from communist leaders at the subversive Highlander Folk School in Tennessee to sow discord. He accepted funding from several communist leaders and organizations, and no less a government official than Attorney General Robert Kennedy directed the FBI to create wiretaps and other forms of surveillance over King and his fellow agitators. Therefore, the federal government knew that King was being used by known and secret communists. But a 1977 court order sealed all that evidence of treachery in the National Archives.

When King’s plan to create civil rights riots was no longer working, he turned his attention to the Vietnam War, accusing our nation’s forces of wantonly killing “a million South Vietnamese civilians, mostly children.” He likened the efforts of America’s men in arms to what Hitler’s forces had done to innocent people before and during World War II. One made-up charge after another, no matter how ghastly, came out of the mouth of this supposed man of peace and honor.

He seemed dishonest to the core: Researchers of the early King years showed that he had earned his degree from Boston University via widespread plagiarism, and some who have examined his career have indicated that, far from being a man of God, he was a consistent philanderer who should have been scorned, not awarded an angelic reputation.

The truth about this man and his career will eventually be known. Even without unsealing the documents, enough is known about King to conclude that those who established a national holiday to honor him should themselves be scorned. Martin Luther King, an enemy of freedom and a seriously flawed individual, should never be lauded by anyone who understands the importance of truth.

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McManus_2Mr. McManus served in the U.S. Marine Corps in the late 1950s and joined the staff of The John Birch Society in August 1966. He has served various roles for the organization including Field Coordinator, Director of Public Affairs, and President. Mr. McManus has appeared on hundreds of radio and television programs and is also author of a number of educational DVDs and books. Now President Emeritus, he continues his involvement with the Society through public speaking and writing for this blog, the JBS Bulletin, and The New American.


Swamp Critter Chosen by Trump

Swamp Critter Chosen by Trump
by JBS President Emeritus John F. McManus

Donald Trump loves catchy phrases. Most Americans have heard him insist on the need to “Make America Great Again.” How to attain such a worthy goal doesn’t require a painstaking search. A return to what made our country great in the first place is all that’s necessary. That means strict adherence to the still standing U.S. Constitution.

John Bolton. Image from Wikimedia Commons by Gage Skidmore, CC BY-SA 2.0.

The document governing the nation’s affairs since 1789 created strong brakes on government power and meddling. Decades of drifting away from the Constitution has led to an array of both domestic and foreign problems. Still, the Constitution is the blueprint that made our country the envy of the world. Sad to say, however, reliance on the venerable document hasn’t been the primary focus on the current president’s agenda, or that of his numerous predecessors.

More recently, Mr. Trump has decided that “Drain the Swamp” is a better crowd pleaser. To most Americans, the “swamp” consists of those who don’t have America’s best interest at heart. The president has taken a few steps toward lessening the effect of the swamp denizens, but they’re still around and more needs to be done to lessen their influence.

One who most would consider part of the “swamp” is John Bolton. But this man has just been tapped by Mr. Trump to be our nation’s newest national security adviser. It’s troubling as Bolton is the direct opposite of Mr. Trump’s early claim to be a non-interventionist.

Described by many as an experienced diplomat who served our nation as Ambassador to the United Nations, Bolton should be known as a neoconservative war monger anxious to force the rest of the world to bend to America’s will. His bellicose urgings kept him from gaining senate approval for the UN post given him by President George W. Bush. When the Senate turned thumbs down on that appointment, Bush waited until that body was no longer in session to award Bolton what is termed a “recess” appointment, a tainted award if ever there was one. Numerous senators from both political parties were wary of the man and he couldn’t win Senate confirmation so Bush gave it to him in a legal but underhanded way.

John Bolton has long been a member of the sovereignty-despising Council on Foreign Relations. It would be difficult to find anyone more committed to unnecessary war. He partnered in wanting a second war against Iraq after the lightning quick removal of Saddam Hussein’s forces from Kuwait in 2001. As a member of the Project for the New American Century (PNAC) dreamed up by neocons Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, Abrams, Perle, and Armitage, he joined with his PNAC internationalists to have Iraq invaded again. After the first President Bush lost to Bill Clinton in 1992, these bellicose internationalists tried to get President Clinton to attack Iraq. But Bill had other concerns to deal with and other ideas about how to create the New World Order.

After Clinton’s eight years in office, Bolton called on President George W. Bush to wage preemptive war against Iran. He has lately insisted that our nation should conduct cyber warfare against Russia, China, Iran, North Korea and any other nation accused of this new form of warfare.

The Constitution isn’t being relied upon by the Trump administration. If it were guiding the President and his policymakers, America’s troops would be brought home from endless wars such as those in Afghanistan and Syria. There would be widespread closing down of U.S. military presence in the 130 nations where American troop contingents are currently posted.

But expecting John Bolton as the president’s national security adviser to change Washington’s reigning militarism is unrealistic. John Bolton should be scorned, not elevated to a very sensitive post.

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McManus_2Mr. McManus served in the U.S. Marine Corps in the late 1950s and joined the staff of The John Birch Society in August 1966. He has served various roles for the organization including Field Coordinator, Director of Public Affairs, and President. Mr. McManus has appeared on hundreds of radio and television programs and is also author of a number of educational DVDs and books. Now President Emeritus, he continues his involvement with the Society through public speaking and writing for this blog, the JBS Bulletin, and The New American.


Voting in Virginia: Your Vote Counts

Voting in Virginia: Your Vote Counts
by JBS President Emeritus John F. McManus

When assessing the voting preferences of the people in various states, a knowledgeable political watchdog will find that Virginia is always up for grabs. During its history of reliably choosing Democrats when Virginia’s Southerners were wary of the growing power of the federal government, the Virginians habitually chose Harry Byrd Sr. and then Harry Bryd Jr. for an important seat in the U.S. Senate. The trend in Virginia during the later decades of the 20th Century was full of electing conservatives for federal and state posts.

Image from pixabay by Maialisa, CC0 Creative Commons.

Things began to change over more recent decades when Virginia’s northern counties became home for large numbers of federal employees. These people have customarily voted mainly to keep their jobs, and they don’t vote as Virginians formerly did. Many of the good-paying jobs they fill are with completely unconstitutional departments and agencies (Education, Energy, Transportation, Health, Foreign Aid, etc.). The bureaucrats who fill them aren’t conservatives; they are reliably left leaning liberals and their choices on election days can be expected to be liberal Democrats. These government employees have enormous influence in Virginia’s statewide races such as those for President, Governor, and U.S. Senator.

Nevertheless, distaste for even larger government has kept the state’s legislature from falling into the hands of liberals. But the growing presence of federal employees has led to a shrinking of the conservative-leaning GOP’s once solid 32-seat advantage in the 100-seat House of Delegates. Also, no one can deny the negative effect for GOP candidates of President Donald Trump.

In Virginia’s 2017 election, GOP domination advantage disappeared and the hotly contested race for the seat in the House of Delegates sought by Republican David Yancey and Democrat Shelly Simonds became the cliffhanger of cliffhangers. What was at stake was control of the lower House of Virginia’s government. If the Democrat prevailed, there would be a 50-50 split in the House, and the newly elected liberal Democrat governor would get to choose House leaders and set the House’s agenda.

The result on election day initially saw Democrat Simonds prevail by a single vote. A recount found another vote for Republican incumbent Yancey – which meant a tie and the winner could not be named. Each candidate had won exactly 11,607 votes. So Virginia did what its law called for. That law stipulated the creation of a non-vote drawing where the names of the two candidates are written on separate pieces of paper, put into a bowl, and the election winner is chosen when an official of the Virginia State Board of Elections selects one slip of paper. On January 4th, David Yancey’s name was on the slip pulled from the bowl. The Republicans had won and their margin in the House would be 51 to 49.

So, unless some other challenge is made, incumbent David Yancey will return as the elected representative of the district where a slip of paper, not a plurality of even one vote, made him the winner. A few more federal employees in the district would have resulted in a Democrat victory, not only for the single seat in Virginia’s House of Delegates, but for expanding Medicaid, approving a call for a federal Constitutional Convention, and a lot more.

Whoever says his vote doesn’t count should be made aware of what recently happened in Virginia.

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McManus_2Mr. McManus served in the U.S. Marine Corps in the late 1950s and joined the staff of The John Birch Society in August 1966. He has served various roles for the organization including Field Coordinator, Director of Public Affairs, and President. Mr. McManus has appeared on hundreds of radio and television programs and is also author of a number of educational DVDs and books. Now President Emeritus, he continues his involvement with the Society through public speaking and writing for this blog, the JBS Bulletin, and The New American.


Alabama Senate Race Indicates Possible Skullduggery by GOP Leaders

Alabama Senate Race Indicates Possible Skullduggery by GOP Leaders
by JBS President Emeritus John F. McManus

When reviewing the way some elected officials are treated by their colleagues and the mass media, it’s really no surprise to discover that the standards of conduct claimed by Democrats are less stringent than those held by Republicans. The differences show that Republican leaders seem exceedingly harsh when one of their own gets accused of something, while Democrat leaders seem willing to give a Democrat offender only a gentle scolding.

Alabama in the United States. Image from Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 3.0

Consider: Minnesota Democratic Senator Al Franken abused Ms. Leeann Tweeden while they were on a USO tour in 2006. There’s even a photo showing his smirking countenance while in the act of groping his sleeping victim. Because of the photo, he couldn’t claim “not guilty” so he apologized and added that he was “embarrassed and ashamed.” Democrat leader Nancy Pelosi didn’t ask for his scalp; Pelosi simply wants a formal investigation into what was depicted in the photo and also into some other indiscretions aired by Ms. Tweeden and others.

Then there is Michigan Democratic Congressman John Conyers. Information has surfaced accusing him of harassing and seeking sexual contact with a female congressional staffer in 2015. In addition, it seems likely that he paid her $27,000 out of federal funds to keep her quiet. And, now that the lid on his conduct had been blown away, two other women have made similar charges. Conyers resigned from Congress but only after thinking resigning his position as minority leader of the House Judiciary Committee would be enough. Besides this, there was no calling for the man’s scalp from Democratic Party leaders. And it looks like according to the Democrats, “retiring” seems to erase what he has done.

Contrast these cases with the ongoing treatment received by Alabama senate candidate Roy Moore, a staunch conservative Repubican. The Washington Post and New Yorker magazine have published charges that he abused teenagers 40 years ago when he was in his 30s. Some of Moore’s supposed victims have claimed that he went so far as to ask for sexual favors. He vehemently denies such allegations and wonders how come they are being made decades later when he’s involved in a political campaign. No such accusations ever surfaced in several of his other political races during his long career of serving in numerous elected posts in his home state.

The mere charges leveled against Moore have been accepted as reason enough for leading Republicans including Speaker Paul Ryan, Senate Majority leader Mitch McConnell, and several others to urge Moore to cancel his run for the Senate. No evidence confirming his supposed wrongdoing has been presented by anyone. Other Republican senators, Arizona Senator John McCain in particular, have been outspoken crusaders urging Moore to cancel his candidacy.

More recently, allegations have risen claiming Moore’s supposed improprieties with teen girls 40 years ago while he was roaming around a mall in Gadsden, Alabama. The claims include a charge that his disreputable conduct led to him being banned  from even entering the complex. The pile-on aimed at Moore has continued while no one has produced any evidence to back up claims of his supposed misbehavior.

What has surfaced are comments from two former mall employees who completely deny the charges aimed at Moore. Johnny Adams was the manager of the mall during the time of the supposed banning and he denies any such ban was ever aimed at Moore. He would have issued any prohibition of that type. Johnnie Sanders worked at the mall’s cafeteria during the same period, was always aware of any such action taken against anyone. He claims that, if such a banning had been issued against Moore, he would have known about it because he knew of some other individual who had deservedly earned such a prohibition.

Alabama voters will decide who will be their senator for the open seat on December 12. If Moore wins the election, some top Senate Republicans have suggested that they will seek to bar him from serving. All of this brings to mind the charge that there is little difference between Democrats and Republicans once they get elected to national office. In this case, the Democrats want their candidate to win the Senate seat. And, while they pose as anxious GOPers who want an ally elected to the Senate, Republican acceptance of completely unverified charges against Moore may well result in a Democratic victory in the upcoming election. All of which makes Roy Moore appear to be feared as a legitimate swamp drainer by top Republicans. Top Democrats agree.

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McManus_2Mr. McManus served in the U.S. Marine Corps in the late 1950s and joined the staff of The John Birch Society in August 1966. He has served various roles for the organization including Field Coordinator, Director of Public Affairs, and President. Mr. McManus has appeared on hundreds of radio and television programs and is also author of a number of educational DVDs and books. Now President Emeritus, he continues his involvement with the Society through public speaking and writing for this blog, the JBS Bulletin, and The New American.


Trump Vs. A Media “Rock Star”

Trump Vs. A Media “Rock Star” 
by JBS President Emeritus John F. McManus

It seems as though our nation’s left-leaning mass media will find grist for their anti-Trump crusade no matter what the President or his top aides say or do. If the President assured someone that the sun would rise in the East tomorrow morning, some media star would cite the ravings of a confirmed anti-Trump crusader insisting Donald Trump has no love for the West.

United States Rep. Frederica Wilson (D-Florida), 2011, official House portrait. Image from Wikimedia Commons in public domain.

Four American soldiers were recently slain in Africa’s Niger. While performing their mission to train local military personnel, they were ambushed and never had a chance. Most likely, they were targeted because they were Americans.

President Trump sought advice about what to say in the calls he would make to the members of the grieving families. He turned to someone who knew from first-hand experience how to handle such a tragic responsibility: Retired Marine Corps General John Kelly, his Chief of Staff. A few years earlier while Kelly was still serving on active duty, his close friend General Joseph Dunford had delivered to him the awful news that his son had been killed while serving in Afghanistan.

Dunford brought the terrible news to General Kelly, and Kelly recalled that message when asked by the President what he could say to a devastated family member in a telephone call. Referring to the death of young Lieutenant Robert Kelly who died in Afghanistan, that message to the lieutenant’s father stated:

He was doing exactly what he wanted to do when he was killed. He knew what he was getting into by joining that one percent. He knew what the possibilities were because we’re at war and when he died, he was surrounded by the best men on earth, his friends.

That’s precisely what President Trump copied and said to each of the families of the four men who died in Niger. We know this because Chief of Staff Kelly told a news conference first about Mr. Trump’s inquiry to him and then about the President’s subsequent calls to the families. The President did his duty but a member of Congress from Florida sought to gain some publicity for herself by attacking Mr. Trump. After overhearing the President’s call to the wife of one of the slain soldiers, Representative Frederica Wilson (D-Fla.) characterized the president’s message as insensitive, especially the portion that Kelly himself had once received – and accepted. He said to Sergeant La David Johnson’s widow that her husband had died “doing exactly what he wanted to do” by serving honorably in Niger.

John Kelly said he was “stunned” by Representative Wilson’s comments. She has reveled in the amount of publicity she has received when she should have been ignored. She now claims to be the equivalent of a “Rock Star,” and delights in the fact that Chief of Staff Kelly has criticized her attack on the President. When Kelly responded to her outburst and likened her remarks to the noise emanating from an “empty barrel,” she played the race card, calling his response a “racist term.” That should have been laughed at, but even though it is a gross absurdity, it gained wide coverage.

Congresswoman Wilson’s record demonstrates that she’s no friend of those who wear the uniform. She has repeatedly voted against measures that would help veterans and their families. One of her votes saw her oppose a measure designed to ensure that families of some slain soldiers would receive death benefits. Yet she gets treated like a “Rock Star” by the same media that delights on finding fault with everything – good or bad – coming from the White House.

In his remarks about this incident, Chief of Staff Kelly recalled that important national attitudes have changed from his youth. His list included: “women were sacred; the dignity of life was sacred; religion seems to be gone as well.“ Most Americans agree that such changes have occurred. It appears that Mr. Kelly was targeting the mass media, the powerful force within our nation that has played a sinister role in altering basic American standards. It is the same mass media that rarely says anything complimentary about President Trump but delights in making a “Rock Star” out of a despicable publicity seeker who happens to be a member of Congress.

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McManus_2Mr. McManus served in the U.S. Marine Corps in the late 1950s and joined the staff of The John Birch Society in August 1966. He has served various roles for the organization including Field Coordinator, Director of Public Affairs, and President. Mr. McManus has appeared on hundreds of radio and television programs and is also author of a number of educational DVDs and books. Now President Emeritus, he continues his involvement with the Society through public speaking and writing for this blog, the JBS Bulletin, and The New American.


The Boston Globe Attacks JBS with Falsities

The Boston Globe Attacks JBS with Falsities
by JBS President Emeritus John F. McManus

Mr. Ted Widmer from The Boston Globe wrote a nasty August 24th article about Robert Welch. Starting with insult-laden labeling of Welch’s followers as a “troll army,” the piece was filled with errors, misrepresentations, and downright falsehoods. Anyone who finds a need for some verifiable history about Massachusetts would be wise to look somewhere other than the Massachusetts Historical Society where Widmer is advertised as a “trustee.”

A great deal of the piece is simply dead wrong. Other parts are shaded to make Welch and the Society he formed seem like unreliable, even libelous, miscreants. For the record, here are some corrections and comments about his screed.

No one in the John Birch Society ever warned that the UN was “going to invade Texas.” For all the years of my association with the Society (I joined in 1964, accepted a staff position in 1966, and stepped aside as a full-time employee in 2016), I either saw other staff personnel put down such rumors or I initiated the put down myself. Same about Obama being born in Kenya and 9/11 being an inside job. Same about numerous other rumors that the Society helped to squelch.

Welch was indeed a “boy genius” but, contrary to the assertion, he never claimed that label for himself. Others who took the time to get to know him, his history, and his prodigious intellect found that indeed, he was a prodigy at an early age.

While a student at Harvard Law School, Welch sought to correct Harvard Professor Felix Frankfurter who insisted that labor and management were “enemies” whose distaste for each other would always be a key to U.S. economic woes. Welch defended the traditional stance that labor and management were partners in productivity, not enemies – an attitude that counters the kind of Marxist divisiveness that Frankfurter spent his life promoting.

The “loss” of China to Mao Tse-tung’s murderous forces wasn’t merely a “so-called” historical event. The government under Mao took the lives of so many innocent millions that he won a place in the Guinness Book of Records as history’s greatest mass murderer. Yet Mr. Widmer  termed Welch’s seeking to alert the American people about such an enormous tragedy as an example of “extremist views.” Incredible!

Welch’s letters in the 1950s weren’t photocopied because photocopying hadn’t yet been invented. (Small point but evidence of sloppy journalism.)

The Welch-led Society opposed fluoridation of water, not because of its supposed health benefits, but because it amounted to government forced mass medication, something advocated by the likes of Adolph Hitler. Shortly after the Society found itself victimized by charges that its stand, absent the reason for its position being given, was worthy of your type of ridicule, a professor at Tufts University suggested that the then-rising U.S. population could be countered by adding birth control substances to the water supply.  And he pointed to fluoridation of the water supplies as a precedent that could be followed. Even the Boston Globe published this man’s totalitarian suggestion.

About Welch’s 1963 book presenting the career of Dwight Eisenhower, no facts in its 300 pages have ever been shown to be false. Even today, readers find the revelations collected and published by Welch to be important history. All of it should be worthy of the time of a “trustee” of any state’s Historical Society.

Earl Warren was never “hated” by any member of the Welch-led Society.  What he did to advance the cause of Communism within the U.S. caused domestic Communists to hold a huge rally in New York City to salute the Supreme Court leader and the help he was providing to further communism’s subversion.  Pointing this out, and showing fellow Americans the harm created by the Warren-led court, wasn’t “hate.” It amounted to supplying facts and perspective needed by Americans.

The Society recommended letter writing. It formed a speakers bureau. It gathered people into rallies. And, yes, it either employed tactics or made recommendations that even Communists were using – each of which was morally based, legal and sensible. But Communists use moral and legal tactics along with immoral and illegal means to carry out their work. Communists have always published a newspaper. The Boston Globe’s owners publish a newspaper. But the Society never accused the Boston Globe’s owners of adopting a Communist practice in publishing their newspaper.

The Society is frequently pilloried for not publishing its membership lists, thereby earning the charge made by Mr. Widmer and others that it is a “secret” organization. But the Boy Scouts, the League of Women Voters, and many other organizations also don’t publish their membership lists. Mr. Widmer seems to have no appreciation for easily understood practices followed by many. Publishing a membership list would violate a trust accorded to members, which is why so many organizations refuse to do so.

The Society never, I repeat never, labeled Martin Luther King a Communist. Its publications did show that he hired communists, accepted funding from communists, attended communist training sessions, and frequently started demonstrations that turned into communist-led rioting and destructiveness. It was these associations that led former Attorney General Robert Kennedy to wiretap King’s phone and take other steps to thwart what King was doing. When J. Edgar Hoover labeled King the “most notorious liar” in America, he had plenty of reason to do so.

Mr. Widmer also claims that some of “the beliefs that Birchers held were racist.” That charge is odious, something our black and Jewish members would eagerly resist.

It goes on to describe members of the John Birch Society as a “merry band of radicals.” Shame on him for denigrating some of the finest people in our nation with that slur.

He and many other opponents of our Society rely on the claims of William Buckley to buttress his attacks. But Buckley betrayed his own beliefs when he announced support for abortion, when he suggested that colleague Joseph Sobran and ally Patrick Buchanan were tainted with anti-Semitism, when he accepted membership in the world-government-promoting Council on Foreign Relations, and more. As the “Pied Piper” for the Establishment he once opposed, he became the favorite of numerous liberals who despised constitutional conservatism.

Enough! Mr. Widmer has discredited himself enormously. That the Boston Globe would publish his rantings discredits the Globe.

An apology is due. If one comes, I will gladly have it reprinted here.

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McManus_2Mr. McManus served in the U.S. Marine Corps in the late 1950s and joined the staff of The John Birch Society in August 1966. He has served various roles for the organization including Field Coordinator, Director of Public Affairs, and President. Mr. McManus has appeared on hundreds of radio and television programs and is also author of a number of educational DVDs and books. Now President Emeritus, he continues his involvement with the Society through public speaking and writing for this blog, the JBS Bulletin, and The New American.