Behind the Bastards

There’s a reason the History Channel has produced hundreds of documentaries about Hitler but only a few about Dwight D. Eisenhower. Bad guys (and gals) are eternally fascinating. Behind the Bastards dives in past the Cliffs Notes of the worst humans in history and exposes the bizarre realities of their lives. Listeners will learn about the young adult novels that helped Hitler form his monstrous ideology, the founder of Blackwater’s insane quest to build his own Air Force, the bizarre lives of the sons and daughters of dictators and Saddam Hussein’s side career as a trashy romance novelist.

Part One: How The Rich Ate Christianity

Part One: How The Rich Ate Christianity

Tue, 01 Mar 2022 11:00

We sit down with Dan and Jordan from knowledge fight to discuss the plot to make Christianity capitalist.



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Hello, I'm Erica Kelly from the podcast Southern Fried True crime, and if you want to go from podcast fan to podcast host, do what I did and check out spreaker from iheart. I was working in accounting and hating it. Then after just 18 months of podcasting with Spreaker, I was able to quit my day job. Follow your podcasting dreams, let's break or handle the hosting, creation, distribution, and monetization of your podcast. Go to That's Hey there, it's Ebony Monet, your co-host for the San Diego Zoo's Amazing Wildlife podcast. In this special episode, we're speaking with Doctor Jane Goodall about the fascinating journey that led to her social discoveries on chimpanzees. So four whole months, the chimps ran away from me. I mean, they take one look at this peculiar white ape and disappear into the vegetation. Bing wildlife on the iHeartRadio app or wherever you get your podcasts. In the 1980s and 90s, a psychopath terrorized the country of Belgium. A serial killer and kidnapper was abducting children in the bright light of day. From Tenderfoot TV and iHeartRadio, this is La Monstra, a story of abomination and conspiracy. The story about the man who simply become known as. Lamaster. Listen for free on the iHeartRadio app, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you get your podcasts. Oh boy, what a great day. I'm feeling so good. You know what? I'm just gonna. Ohh. What's that? Healthy. There's a knock at the door. Who is it? Should should we, should we see who it is? I mean, yeah. Hey, why? It's Dan and Jordan from knowledge fight. Come running when I heard that weird noise come out of your mouth second ago. Check on you all. All I wanna say is ohh. Thank you. Thank you. You. Normally, it's my atonal grunting that opens the show. I I don't know how you guys. You have a you have a great song to lead you in. I don't know how you so consistently open a show without. You just grunting and and moaning. We do that under the theme song. Yeah, we do that to Mike. They're turned off. Yeah, yeah, we're just stretching. Before you go run a marathon, you gotta just go. Just, just putting out on weed and doing like heavy, heavy. You know, breathing. Just pump it up. Hello? God. Hi. I'm George. You're Jordan. You're Dan of the podcast knowledge fight. And also in dance case of the legal effort to sue Alex Jones for repeatedly doing crimes. I it's weird that that may be a credit now. I guess I was a consultant. Yeah, consulting expert on the depth. The latest deposition. That Alex did in the the Texas cases, yeah. People have pointed out multiple times that on like episode three or four of our show we I made the joke that he would be involved somehow in the lawsuit and we laughed and laughed and laughed 700 episodes later. Yeah I remember when I first started listening to your show because I was doing the the behind the ******** episodes on Alex Jones. I was like, God I I ******* hope someone involved in the. The case against him knows about these guys because they are they are uncovering damning stuff every week, and it should probably be involved in the case. It's finally, finally came about and, yeah, good times. Yeah. Yeah. Well, congratulations. Would you like to talk about something completely different from Alex Jones? I think that would be nice if it would be a delight. So here's a spoiler. I I lied. I lied to you. It's it's not complete. It's not a it's it's a precursor to Alex Jones. This is a story about how the wealthy in America ate and transformed Christianity. That's fun. Yeah. Yeah. That this is, this is a story that is adjacent to the story of the John Birch Society. They're not going to come into it much here, but they are. They are involved. And it is a story that is adjacent to the rise of Alex Jones because obviously he's heavily influenced by the John Birch Society. This is this is a precursor we've talked about on this show a bunch. And I know y'all are very well aware that like. 72 Ish was the first time the religious right was like a political bloc in the country. Right. And you've got Falwell and these people kind of we welding Billy Graham welding the right wing into a Republican coalition for the first time. But that only was able to happen because of a process that got started in the 1930s. And that's what we're going to talk about today. I mean, I would have argued that the first was the Crusades, but, you know, it's very similar. Well, you know why you gotta politicize the Crusades? Sometimes people look, people are just vibrant. Vibrant. You know, there's some dudes on horseback, couple armies of children getting sold into slavery. Not a cell phone insight. You know, it's nonpartisan. Yeah. That's the important thing about it. Yeah. And that's exactly right. Every we were able to put down all of our petty disagreements, to deluge Jerusalem in a river of blood. Trickle down economics a lot. Yeah. All sides and salads related. Size, mass. Billings, I like that you asked if you wanted to talk about something other than Alex, and I was like, yeah, maybe something light and breezy. No, no, absolutely not. This is maybe, maybe it was gonna be an episode about the bagel boss. I don't know who that would be nice. This episode is is gonna be me reading you letters that different millionaires sent each other, talking about how to destroy democracy. So sounds about right. That sounds good. Yeah. You know, I, I, I, I'm, I'm a big advocate fan of interested in storytelling. I think it's probably the most powerful thing that people do. You don't get no empire or social movement or civilization gets anywhere without, like, having a set of stories that the people who are inside that thing believe and that really to a significant amount determines reality, right. There's a degree to which you can kind of ignore even physical reality if the stories are strong enough as some of our. Some of our anti VAX and anti anti vaccine friends can can detest. You know, there there's limits to that, but it's it's it's it's a pretty powerful thing. If you can get people to believe a story, even a ridiculous one, you can, you can get them to do almost anything. And capitalism itself thrives because of the stories people tell about it. The reality of course, is that capitalism is a system that was cobbled together by a handful of rich people in the 1600s and 1700s be created the first corporations which allowed them to pool their money. Chair risk and profits for risky ventures overseas. And the first things they did was go to the Spice Islands and carry out a brutal genocide in order to gain a monopoly on nutmeg. That was the first thing. Capitalism. OK. I feel like you're being unfair to the East India Company. OK. This was the. This was the Dutch East India Company. Yeah. I mean, yeah, yeah, they were fine. It was a nonpartisan. Again. Nonpartisan. Absolutely. And, hey, capitalism is not unique. Every system human beings have developed on a large scale is a river of blood. Like they all are, you know? That's just the way. That's just the way people be. But if if you if you tell the story of capitalism accurately, which is that it's, you know, another chapter in the history of human beings finding ways to be ****** to each other in large groups, that's not something people like to hear, right? You're not going to get, you're not going to get a whole bunch of people, rah, rah, rah over capitalism. If you're just talking about how they murdered several ethnic groups for nutmeg, you're certainly not gonna get a lot of raw, raw from the people who have a lot of capital. Yeah, yeah, exactly. And those people. Like to find better stories to explain what capitalism is, and to get people to identify it enough that they'll threaten a race war if you you try to amend the system at all. Which is why groups like the Acton Institute, a right wing Christian think tank, write stuff like this. And I'm going to quote from an article titled How Christianity created Capitalism. The people of the High Middle Ages were agog with wonder at great mechanical clocks, new forms of gears for windmills and watermills improvements and wagons and carts, shoulder harnesses for beasts of burden, the ocean going ship rudder eyeglasses and magnifying glasses, iron smelting and Ironworks, stone cutting, and new architectural principles. So many new types of machines were invented and put to use by 1300 that historian John Gimpel wrote a book in 1976 called the Industrial Revolution of the Middle Ages. Without the growth of capitalism, however, such technical discoveries would have been idle novelties. They would seldom have been put in the hands of ordinary human beings through swift and easy exchange. They would not have been studied in, rapidly copied and improved by eager competitors. All this was made possible by freedom for enterprise markets and competition. And that in turn was provided by the Catholic Church. OK, I'm going to throw this out there. You got some notes? I'm gonna throw this out there. It's a little late to respond. There's. No, no, I think that it's about time somebody has got to refute this. OK. I think kind of the underlying words that he was saying was? Slaves, nothing would have been made without slaves. You know, like free labor. Yeah well and it's it's just, it's so comprehensively silly cause it's like, well, but during the Middle Ages a huge amount of the most significant technological development and philosophical development and like mathematical developments were being made by the different caliphates that were in charge of the Muslim world, which were not living under a capitalist system, but they were under the Catholic Church. Yes yes they famously the Addison. Caliphate, big fans of the Pope. I mean, yeah, it, it's, it's, it's, it's it's a pretty ludicrous way to look at at, at to argue that, like, it's a pretty ludicrous description of history, I think. And we could dunk on this article all day, but it's the reality of the situation is just Christianity did not create capitalism. But there is a story, which we're going to talk about today, of how capitalism hijacked Christianity and the specific capitalists who masterminded this **** have names and, like, sent letters to each other. And we have those letters. A bunch of people have written about this, so. Now it's time for a fun story, guys. Hooray, our tail starts in the decades before the Great Depression, when the massive trusts and fortunes accumulated by robber barons of the Gilded Age clashed increasingly with organized labor. Right you, you start to get the 1880s, eighteen 90s workers being like well, what if? What if we all formed together into a large organization and tried to compete with the people, telling us that our children should mine coal until they die? Hey fellas, you wanna stop getting murdered and worked to death? Yeah, alright, let's do we do we feel like there's an alternative to getting machine gunned by our boss when we ask for a race? Right, and then they got machine gunned by their boss, and then they they absolutely did. And occasionally the US government. So this, this clash is happening, and while it's, you know, part of why all of these clashes are happening is that, like, the late 1800s are just the recession after recession, these, like, economic collapses brought on by the fact that, you know, you know why they're brought on. We've all lived through a bunch of economic collections now. Yeah, equivalent to Bitcoin of the day. Yeah. I mean, like, it was Bitcoin. We've been on Bitcoin for awhile. Sure. Yeah. So the left is like swelling in this. Into the early 1900s because of all of these economic collapses. Which as economic collapse does tend to make, tends to make people go like, well, maybe capitalism is not so great. You know, maybe, maybe, maybe the the system could be changed somewhat. A lot of those rabble rousers in the in this. These like labor leaders, a lot of them were not just Christian but Christian members of the clergy and these folks saw the socialist ends they were fighting for is not just in line with, but but demanded by their faith. This was an era in which one in every 26 workers in the United States could expect to be maimed on the job like that is the early 1900s. One out of every 26 workers is going to be seriously injured or killed on the job, and everybody at Amazon is like, holy **** one out of 20. What a what a glorious era. Are you ******* kidding? Yeah, this is such a glass half empty, though. This is 25 out of 26. Yeah, yeah. Get main. Yeah, yeah. See, ministers COVID like George D Herron were outraged by the reduction of sacred human life to an economic unit, and they actually saw what capitalists were doing in this. Was, like, offensive to their religion. Like the present day? No, yeah. He wrote an 1890 sermon called the Message of Jesus to Men of wealth, in which he compared the struggle between labor and capital to the story of Cain and Abel. Herron argued that Cain's choice to murder his brother was, quote, the first bald, brutal assertion of self-interest as the law of Human Life, an assertion always potential with murder. So he was like, literally, the owners of capital are the descendants of Cain. Like, that is right, right, right, right, right, right. Yeah. Although then in that form, Christianity did create capitalism is like, you know, you could are. Yeah. Right. Yeah. I mean, there's an argument if that's what he's gonna argue, I mean, but you're taking it out of Judaism's block then, right. Cain and Abels. But they got more claim to that. Yeah. But then of course we get to a really uncomfortable conversation when we start saying that I'm a small minded fellow who didn't read the Torah close enough. And that's on me. That's on me. The Abrahamic religions. I guess you could say that the devil created capitalism by convincing Cain to murder his brother. That's the argument herons kind of making here, right? Right, right. Yeah. He quote the trial in progress and he's talking about like the the trial of the labor movement is Christ versus Kane. The decision to which the times are hastening us is, shall Christ reign in our American civilization? Like shall Christ or Kane reign in our American civilization? Sorry. So that that's how heroin frames it is like. The the struggle between labour and capital is the same as the biblical struggle between like Cain and Abel and are we going to let them murder us? And unfortunately the answer was yeah. Alright, first thing that's unfamiliar to me about this guy, it seems as though he has read the Bible, which does seem like he might have read the Bible. That's that's an issue for me. I don't think Christianity is allowed to do that. Mm-hmm. As to see the Middle Ages, the minister who read the Bible. Now that doesn't seem right. So Heron stumped. Eugene V Debs, the hero of our episode on the Pullman Strike when he ran for president heading the Socialist Party of America, and I want to quote now from a write up on this in the website sojourners. He was not the only minister to become a socialist either. One historian estimated that between 5 and 25% of all mainline Protestant clergy were Socialist Party members or voted for the party in the 1st 3 decades of the 20th century. Congregationalist minister Franklin Monroe Sprague wrote socialism from Genesis to revelation in 1892. John Spargo, a Methodist minister, became a socialist educator. Norman Thomas, a Presbyterian minister, ran for president of the United States as a socialist candidate from 1928 to 1948. Charles Vale a universalist. Minister was an important socialist writer. African Americans both outside and inside of the Socialist Party also demanded fairer economic systems that affected other facets of life, pushing white Christians and socialists to towards quote a new abolitionism. So there's some cool stuff happening in Christian thought in the 1st 3030 years of the 20th century that doesn't isn't for them. Yeah, I'm really, I'm really proud of them. I know they had a good stretch. They did have a good stretch. This is the story of how that all got ****** ** horribly. But is that the prevailing attitude of it's it's it's not. That is a really good question. It it is not. As they said, this is somewhere between 5 and 25% of ministers in this. Are members of the Socialist Party. Which probably means one in 25. Yeah, it could, it could. Well, it could be 5 and 25 for the, you know, something like that. But there's also this, like, you have to assume if you know 15 or 20% of of them are members, you've got another probably 20 or 30% who are at least sympathetic but like not quite as far left. I I think mainstream Christianity, because of how popular the labor movement is, is probably broadly sympathetic to a lot of these aims, if not as radical as the guys we just cited. It is certainly not a pro capitalist and it is not seen by the capitalists as being pro capitalists. So Christian Socialists often, you know, combined the Gospel of Jesus and what they had read in marks. The interpretation that these guys had was that Jesus was a radical who opposed capitalism. Less common was the idea that socialism could be a foundation for a universal, humanistic religion. But there were some guys who said that, who were like, who kind of went from being Christian ministers to being like, well, now I'm more of like just a Socialist minister, and I feel like my Christianity's wrapped up in that. But this is like socialism is the the religion should be the religion of mankind. You get that on, like, that's the fringe. Yeah, like legislating from the pulpit. I'll tell you that right now. It's it's not what I'm in for here. Also, that sounds like exactly what Alex is terrified of. Yeah, yeah. The nightmare of nightmares. And a lot of the capitalists in this. Are ******* terrified of this because it's spreading really widely. The cause of Christian socialists got a big shot in the arm in August of 1929, when the global economy collapsed and the roaring 20s yielded to the Great Depression. Franklin Delano Roosevelt was elected in 1932 on the promise of providing Americans with a new deal. This involved a bunch of banking reforms, a raft of new social programs, a jobs program, a whole bunch of stuff. Now actual socialists like Nicole Aschoff, who wrote the new profits of capital, saw the New Deal see the New Deal as it was essentially a way for capitalists, who were more reasonable and less monstrous than some of the other capitalists, to keep the system limping along without a socialist revolution. The Elizabeth Warren plan? Yeah. Socialists saw the New Deal as like, well, this is like a shameless compromise to keep capitalism going. And it's it's actually not a good thing. And then FDR was a little bit like, hey, you know, they could buy a lot of people to murder all of us. So maybe let's just chill out and yeah, I'm not this one. I'm not gonna take a stance on this, but I I can't even walk, man. Yeah, I can't run away. I'm not gonna run away. Yeah, I do wanna. I'm not gonna necessarily endorse that. Like, you know, we should never have done the New Deal. We should have just like, let the the the revolution come, because I don't know that that would have worked out. But that is an argument of people will make. And Nicole Aschoff writes in her book quote Capitals ability to periodically present a new set of legitimating principles that facilitate the willing participation of society accounts for its remarkable longevity despite periodic bouts of deep crisis following Max Weber, one of the foremost social thinkers of the 20th century, this belief system. Called this belief system, which justifies and legitimates capitalism and the primacy of profit making is the spirit of capitalism. So that's like this the the term that these, some of these thinkers use the spirit of capitalism for the the ways in which our justifications for it change over time. And the argument here is that kind of FDR was putting a new set of principles to legitimate capitalism. So capitalism is legitimate because we also have the social safety net and we'll take care of people. And it's not this solar system that we had in the decades prior. You've changed it and so it can keep going, right? And the fact that capitalism is this syncretic is seen by critics of capitalism as part of why it's so hard to ******* kill. It's kind of like, I'll change. Yeah, it'll be just, baby, I'll be change. Yeah, take me back, take me back. Come on. So, so that's here. That is what actual socialists are saying at the time. But that's not what capitalists see. So, like, the the capitalists who are opposed to FDR see him as the literal. Embodiment of linen coming to burn their mansions and molest their expensive pets, right? Like that they don't they don't see this as like, oh, he's keeping the system that makes us all rich alive. They see this as he's coming to tear it all down. People are dying in the streets as much, actually. I brought a letter from this time period because I wanted to to join in and this was written by a millionaire at I think it was 1934. It just went. Hmm. Wait. Turn over the page. Turn over the page. Oh yeah. Sorry. Ohh. You gotta stop this. Yeah, that was the last. Yeah, that, that, that, that. That is an adequate summary of what these people are saying at the time. And a number of these dudes, Titans of industry guys who own companies like General Motors, form an organization called the National Association of Manufacturers in 1895. I know them. Yeah, you know that. You know, Nam the Cam, the Candyman was Hannah. Yeah, he sure. He sure did. He shared. Did Welch the one of the founders of the John Birch Society? Yeah. Now, the the Nam had been right in the thick of those Gilded Age recessions we talked about early. Like, that's why this comes out in 1895. There's all these collapses and the left is is rising. You know, you have these, these huge armed strikes and like militant workers organizing. And these people are like, well, if they're if they're organizing with guns to stop people from bringing scabs and couldn't they organize? Guns to take our our stuff, you know? You know, that is that is one of the things about the organized left. So somewhat is like that, that obsession with policing each other, of being like, no, this is how we protest. We only do it this way. And then if you go back in history and it's like they broke Windows and threw grenades into places, they lit everything on fire. There was not a lot of discussion about like, well, now you're making it violent. There was this discussion of like, how do we build the best grenades to throw at our bosses? Exactly. Picking arguments about how many nails should go through the back. Yeah, yeah, it was, it was a different time. And so these, these, these businessmen get very scared of this different time. And they create the Nam as a way to kind of, like, organize and develop a strategy to protect themselves. So, you know, Roosevelt comes to power and initially they're kind of, they have a bunch of different things that they're that they're scared about. They're also really worried about, like domestic industry getting flooded by foreign imports. That stuff. But when Roosevelt comes to power and they actually see this big socialist legislation get passed, they start flipping out and thinking like it. You know, also the thing that's happening this. Is the USSR has just formed, so they're they're both saying, OK, we had these armed workers in the streets, they're getting more organized. They're in the halls of power in Washington and they're gonna make, they're gonna do what the USSR did. And soon we'll all be, you know, executed and our stuff will be taken from us. So in AM pivots to opposing the New deal, their primary contention was that FDR sought to provide people with a sense of security and a safety net, and this was a bad idea. This is literally what they're writing at the time. You're giving people a safety. That is a bad idea because if people aren't scared of dying in the street, they won't work as hard and the free market system will fail. I mean, this is absolutely true. I've seen a lot of trapeze acts and they work harder when there is not a net. Yeah, they do. There's a lot of a lot of lazy trapeze artists. Walmart will have fewer employees if no one is going to starve to death if they don't work there, you might not be able to run Walmart the current way that it's run. People don't dance quite as fast as they do when you're shooting at their feet. OK, here's my plan. Alright. We give everybody a social safety net, but you have to go through a gauntlet of like spiked things that are moving and like spinning. You have to climb the egro crash. Totally. You have to climb the aggro crag. That's the way to get to work every day. I I actually think that would be dope. What what if what if the build back better plan were like, I'm gonna say a trillion dollars for more agro crags? Yeah, what if it was just a better salary for Mike O'Malley? Yeah. It was 100% to Mike O'Malley. Some of it's gotta go to Mo. Yeah. Yeah. I'm sorry. I'm sorry. That's that's what's going to split the left, Dan is is how much money goes to mow your team or your team. Molly, what are you. It's going, it's going to end like a ******* a Madrid in 1938. People shooting each other in the street banners with Moe's face and guns. It's not paying low. Equally, it's rockism run amok. Ohh God, fantastic. You know what else is woke ISM run amok? Dan and Jordan. What's that? The products and services that support this podcast. Ohh **** unless it's the Washington State Highway Patrol. Yeah. They they advertising on your show, dude. They do from time to time. Jesus Christ, you're doing ads for cops. I know. We're we're we're not doing them. They just come on the the ******* feed. We're we're we're we're working on it. But we we did an episode on the Washington State Highway Patrol recently, which they advertised on it was like what happened with Bloomberg. That's that's that's meta as hell. Yeah. I don't think I mean they're wasting their money. I don't think anyone who listens to any of these shows is going to become a Washington State Highway Patrol officer. Probably not. Probably it's like, it's like LC like epoch times ads on yeah, left wing videos I see on on YouTube. It's very weird. Yeah, it's it's it's funny but, you know, here's *******. Probably. I do that because Sophie has to believe it. Mint Mobile offers premium wireless starting at just 15 bucks a month. And now for the plot twist. Nope, there isn't one. Mint Mobile just has premium wireless from 15 bucks a month. 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That's better This fall on revisionist history, is there anything that we haven't talked about? I should have asked you if you'd like to add that seems relevant. You should have asked me why I'm missing fingers on my left hand. A story about sacrifice. I think his suffering drove him to try to alleviate suffering. And the shocking discovery I made where I faced the consequences of writing a book I thought would help people? Isn't that funny? It's not funny at all. It's depressing. Very depressing. Revisionist history is back with more. Listen to revisionist history on the iHeartRadio app or wherever you get your podcasts. I've never seen less enthusiasm for a great idea in my life. Ah, we're back. Did you guys know that Blue Apron is the only food box company that runs an island off the coast of Indonesia where you can hunt children for sport? Did they buy little St. James? They did. They did. They bought Little St. James too, but they haven't said they haven't got that one going yet. That's down in the Bahamas. The only the only person I want to hunt is John Leguizamo, and that's because the pest was my favorite movie in the 90s. So that's just how it's gotta go. For me, I mean, I don't think any court would convict you, but that's a separate discussion. So we're, we're, we're, we're talking, we're we're talking. That this. Where you've got, you know, the Nam who is terrified, that uh, who starts advancing the idea that if you build a safety net, the free market system will collapse because people won't be scared enough of dying in the street, which is an argument you hear today. I actually just this week, Representative John Rose, a Republican from Tennessee, used this argument to explain why healthcare was not a right, why we shouldn't have universal healthcare. Quote if you really want to be free, it can't be a right. We have to have an incentive for people to struggle to support. Themselves like, this is this is when that lion is invented, right? That was not always a justification that, like if we try to do a safety net, people won't work hard. That that's and they're coming up with this stuff in this. You know, it's the, it's cool. It's a great scam. It is a great, really great scam to just look people dead in the eye and say live or die, buddy, you should go to work today. Yeah, just starving. Then this whole system falls apart. It's a little insulting. In terms of, like, saying the people who do things don't have any reason to do it other than, like, pure survival, yeah, I think a lot of jobs people would do it if if money didn't exist in the same form. I think most of the people who were doctors would be doctors. If, you know, we lived under a different system, I think all of the people who are artists would still be artists, except for maybe Pitbull does. I mean, I had to cut Dan's Achilles tendons to make sure that he stayed here. But otherwise, I'm always in this chair. Yeah, exactly. Yes. But just. Basically what you have to do with chickens to keep them in the room, to keep them laying those eggs. Baby. Yeah yeah dude, come on with Dan's wings so he doesn't fly out right? Start another podcast still and die. Can't have me going to to Austin again. Yeah. The thing, too, that it seems weird is like this seems to imply that the people in the National Association of Manufacturers are only doing that to they wouldn't be doing this stuff if they didn't fear for their lives. No, I mean, yeah, you, you are. You are right that that is kind of, they're projecting a bit that, like, yeah, literally everything you do is because you're afraid of winding up like the people you are fighting to keep struggling. So the resistance of these manufacturers to the rising tide of socialism was at first disorganized and somewhat incoherent. You know, like I said this the argument line they advanced to still around today, but that's not something that you're going to immediately get a lot of people on board with. In order for that idea to become universal on the right you have to lay some groundwork. So they they decide to do that in a couple of different ways. They're trying sort of a shotgun approach. They have like a propaganda campaign dedicated to fighting anti business sentiment but people don't like. Big businesses ever really? Like, even even today, people on the right, nobody likes big corporations, so that's not an easy thing to do. They do know the most important thing to do on the right is demonize giant corporations while at the same time being like, but you need to make sure they have all of your money. Yeah. I mean, like, make sure of that. Yeah. And and that's that's kind of why, like, they that that that's doesn't prove to be a very productive line for them either when they first get their real idea of, like, what's actually going to work to advance these ideas in American. Society is when the Red scare hits in the late 1930s and Texas Democratic Congressman Martin dies, founds the House Committee on Unamerican activities. The media starts going nuts with. Like there's, you know, Reds coming here trying to do what USSR in the United States, all these dangerous anarchists and communists and whatnot to invade Iraq and that these these business businessmen realized that like, well no, the thing to do, it's not to fight anti business sentiment. That's not going to be productive and it's not going to be to tell people they need to struggle. It's it's you have to cloak this in fighting communism because people are scared of what they're hearing in the USSR, and that's gonna work a hell of a lot better than anything else. So these publishes a book in 1940 called the Trojan Horse, in which he claims communism is a religion that has replaced religious faith with materialism. Dees warns that communists were waging a psychological invasion to conquer the American way of life, and some of the brighter guys at the Nam See this and fight as the opportunity that it is. Deez isn't saying anything about free enterprise here, but he's tying socialism in, as opposed to religion, which obviously in the USSR at least, it was, you know that it they like, they outlaw it, you know, you have all these. Tommys. Yeah. There should have been, like, the far right sending up fireworks the moment he put that to paper of just like, this is the birth of a new guy. Yeah. They they get out there. It's like the telegram scene at the end of the Independence Day. They're like, this is how this is how to do it, you know? Yeah. It's essentially a compound noun at this point. Yeah. Godless communism, totally like, and and some of these guys at the Nam who are not dumb men recognize that. What needs to be done? D's got the germ of a good idea, but it's not. Enough to just say the Communists are going to replace religion. You also have to tie capitalism to religion. You have to make Christianity intimately a part of capitalism. And that that's how you ******* do this **** right? That's the groundwork you need to get people to believe all the **** you need them to believe if you want to keep all of the money in your hands, you know, hey, if you want people to believe something fake, go to the people who already believe fake ****. I I do apologize to our our our #1 listener. The Pope Jordan is not speak for everyone here. Big, big fan of the Pope. Not not the new one. The one who was a Nazi. Right. Right. Don't like that he was a Nazi or that he covered up a lot of sexual harassment, but he's actually he's incredible at ping pong. And, you know, I I appreciate. I appreciate that. Sophie's just letting this happen. Wow. Unbelievable. I can't believe that. Sophie, I've just been sitting here. I I probably would have jumped in, but I was trying to come up with a Deez Nuts. I been doing that. Yeah. Yeah. It's impossible to not think about that. Yeah. Yeah. I was thinking, like, Can you believe how influential. Do you know it's not which which Deez Deez Nuts Ohh when they come up with this idea that like, OK, we need to, we need to tar the left as anti religion and we need to, we need to make people associate capitalism and Christianity together. When this idea is like born, it's a pretty long like it's not an easy thing to do right. For one thing, FDR is in office and he is famous for being the 1st president to basically give religious sermons. Best speeches, a lot of his speeches, he's quoting from the Bible constantly. The National Bible Press actually publishes a chart where people can like, find on a regular basis. And it'll like, give his speeches and it'll list the Bible quotes that he's like, really paraphrasing or talking about or like like a bingo card. Yeah. Yeah. For because because he's basically like a preacher. Like, that's how FDR talks to the nation. And FDR, FDR is really for, for all of the, you know, arguments that are very valid. You know about him essentially stopping a socialist revolution by introducing reform. He also really ties Christianity to anti capitalism in his speeches. In one FDR states quote, the money changers have fled their high seats in the temple of our civilization when he's talking about the New Deal. So he's he's the NAM's plan to like reverse this is they're they are they are dealing with like this is not an easy thing right? Today it's obviously the left. Is godless and the right is is Christian and capitalist. That is. They have a long road to get there. At this point, you gotta basically climb the aggro crag. Yeah, they gotta climb in Aggro Crag. That's exactly right. That's the metaphor out. You have to hit each button along the way. You have to hit the combined capitalism with Jesus button. You have to hit the. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Fog a lot. What needs doing. A lot of fog. And they get delayed by a little thing you guys might have heard of. You haven't really covered in your show, so I'm not sure if you're aware of it. World War Two, which what? Yeah, yeah. There was a second one. It was not as interesting. It was not as in find out about this. This is what I gotta go. It was it was less. Less aliens and more Temple of Doom, you know? Umm, yeah. Unfortunate. You hate to see, you know, a sequel that just doesn't live up to the original, but sophomore slump. Yeah, exactly. World War Three, though. That's gonna be that's gonna be our that's gonna be our alien three. You know, finally, finally. The good one. You don't you don't like the last crusade. I like the last. The last, actually, the The Last Crusade is maybe my favorite of them. Yeah, it's Sean Connery and Harrison Ford. What more do you want, man? Sean Connery and Harrison Ford fighting Nazis. Stamp. He's got the stamp in the library and at the same time he gets this. And that's just great comedy. That's just great comedy, man. It is. It's good, good movie. So let's hope our World War three is less alien three and more Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. Fingers crossed, everybody. Fingers crossed. Our World War three. That may have. Started by the time this episode drops. Well, to be fair, that's World War four, according to some people, because of the the Cold War, Cold War. Some of the people who are maybe involved in the story you're telling, like you it that way. My my argument is if if the Germans don't start it, it's not a World War. You know, if it's not from champagne in France, it's not really shame. Yeah, really. Just a sparkling global conflict. Yeah. Can I just say all of your laughs about the next World War? Pretty scary. Yeah. I mean, what else, you guys scary laughs? Terrifying? You realize we're terrified 3 it's like. Robert is not allowed to predict. You know, World War Two kicks off and this is bad for the Nam both because a lot of the guys involved in the Nam were part of the America first movement and did not want to go to war because they were big fans in Nazi Germany. But it's also, I thought it was because they had spent too much time in Nam. Boom. Give me 50 point Nam. Nah yeah, we got it. We're just alright. Everybody's got the same look, which is no quiet disable. No, I want more. I can't help you out when you yell boom and then wanna high five. I just can't help you. So during the war years, NAM's propaganda they can't really, like, execute this plan that they've started to cobble together, because the US is allied with the USSR. So fear mongering against the Reds does not work as well when you are shipping them as many tanks as you can possibly put together. You know when you are handing as many guns as you have to the Soviets, because they're the only thing standing between the world and a tide of Nazis. It's hard to get people scared about the commies, you know? Yeah, a little bit tough. Yeah. So they are. They are kind of planning and thinking during this. Though. And one of the things that some of these people start to realize is that if they're really going to push this agenda through, if they're going to make Christianity and capitalism be the same thing in the minds of millions of Americans, it's not going to. A bunch of CEO's aren't going to make that happen. They need an inside man. They need a popular, charismatic preacher who knows how to talk to other ministers and to congregations. They need an active partner who is a religious leader. And they find this partner in James W Fifield junior. Now I wanna quote from a write up in Politico by Kevin Cruz, who's done a lot of writing on this subject. Quote. In December of 1940, more than 5000 industrialists from across the nation made their yearly pilgrimage to the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York City, convening for the annual meeting of the National Association of Manufacturers. The program promised. An impressive slate of speakers, tightens at General Motors, General Electric, Standard Oil mutual Life and Sears Roebuck's popular. Lectures such as etiquette expert Emily Post and renowned philosopher historian Will Durant, even FBI director J Edgar Hoover. Tucked away near the end of the program was a named few new initially Reverend James W Fifield Junior. Handsome, tall, and somewhat gangly, the 41 year old Congregationalist minister bore more than a passing resemblance to Jimmy Stewart. Addressing the crowd of business leaders, Fifield delivered a passionate defense of the American system of free enterprise and a withering assault on its perceived enemies, and Franklin D Roosevelt's administration decrying the new deals. Encroachment upon our American freedoms. The minister listed a litany of sins committed by the Democratic government, ranging from its devaluation of currency to its disrespect for the Supreme Court. Singling out the regulatory state for condemnation, he denounced the multitude of federal agencies attached to the executive branch and warned ominously of the menace of autocracy approaching through bureaucracy. So right, yeah, I have to assume Emily Post had some notes on that, that I think she was on board. Might not have been great etiquette if we might not want to look too much into what Emily Post believed. It's wild that though you could have, like, someone who is an etiquette expert whose name is still recognizable. You know it is. It is. It's impressed going around now being an etiquette expert. Yeah. Is that what an influencer is ultimately? Yeah. No. No. Well, OK. Emily post. You know, like if she pushed, wasn't in, I shot my shot and I missed. And that's fine. That's fine. She wasn't early influencer. I mean, she was kind of like Marie Kondo, but of being polite in dinner parties. Yeah, try not saying go **** yourself. Yeah, so Fifield's primary argument to this, this huge room full of the richest people in the world, was that capital could only save itself from the mini menaces of unionism and social democracy by tying itself in religion in opposition to Soviet socialism, which was godless. He was adamant that the clergy would be big businesses strongest ally in this quest, and his speech was met with thunderous applause. So they this guy is saying exactly what these dudes have been thinking, and he's also seems to be. Proposing a way forward in this plan. Fifield had been beating this particular drum for a while. He'd gotten his start in Michigan. His Big Brother was a really popular preacher who gained prominence in that area for taking over a struggling church and turning it profitable. And Fifield did the same thing. He himself, and it was so successful that he got a gig at the First Congregational Church in Los Angeles in 1935. And I went to quote now from a paper by Eckhart Toy from the University of Washington on fifield's background. When Fifield became Minister of the Church, he realized it had incurred a substantial debt of $750,000, which is like $13 million today. To address the Church's debt, he launched a campaign to raise the profile of the church both locally and nationally, and he instituted an adult education series called College of Life, which employed 14 professors from universities throughout California. He began broadcasting five radio programs and initiated a speaker series club. His public relations talent soon paid off, and the church was out of debt by 1942. So this is the guy who creates the first mega church. Like, and he does this in a very interesting way because that's his first sermon was called sinners in the hand of a wealthy God. That's that. Yeah. Basically, yes. That's almost exactly what he does because he's like, yeah, he he's in LA, this is a church in an affluent part of the city that's like the modern equivalent of $13 million in debt. And how are you going to make $13 million heading to church? Become L Ron Hubbard. Welcome what? Yeah, yeah, basically become an influencer. Yeah. Create a sort of cult. But instead of you being the cult leader, you create a cult where you convince all of these rich people that they are godly by virtue of being rich. And then they'll give you enough money that you can get your church out of debt, right? Do you think do you think he's the guy? I don't know if you've heard this, but for for I I'm more than passingly familiar with Christianity. But when I grew up, the. Explanation of the like, you can't get a it's harder for a rich man to get into heaven than a camel through than an eye of the needle. Somebody had this pitch of, like, the eye of the needle was actually like, this really narrow gate that they've now built. Yeah, totally. I actually, I just looked into this recently and that's nonsense. No, of course it's nonsense. But what I'm I'm wondering if this is the dude who ******* pulled that **** off? You know what I'm saying? Yeah, think so? I don't think it goes back that far. OK. But yeah, the that's that that exists in multiple of the synoptic Gospels and the word that's used is different. So it wouldn't be like referring to a specific gate. It would have to be no, no concept. So that's nonsense. It was very clear. But I think, yeah, I think that that came about after this. That we're talking. OK, got that, that I think that specifically does. But the general thing of figuring out like saying that, no, no, no, no. Despite what everyone says about Jesus, he actually thinks if you're a good person. To get rich, whatever he wants. Jesus, what a man. He was violent once in his life and it was against bankers. No, no, no. If you read him, he said he he likes swords. There was that he did like sell your stuff and get a sword. If you read the good Gospels, at one point in time he murders a kid just for getting in his way. So you get you're getting not stick now that's that's the ****. He killed Dragons. Jesus was child ******. Ultimate superhero. Just murder and kids left and right. That's the Jesus back. Yeah. So he's just ******* with him? Yes. He was more ******* with the parents. It was a better time. That is. That is the kind of Christianity I could get on board with. So Fifield gets his church out of debt by appealing to the wealthiest people in Los Angeles and and finding ways to show them that, like Christian doctrine actually says you don't need to give money to the poor. Sources will often describe him as politically conservative, but doctrinally liberal. And what that means is that, like, he was right, he was very conservative with his politics, but he was liberal in his interpretation of the Bible because it let him justify his politics. It was loose with the Austrians. Like his interpretation. Yeah, he's a fun guy. So he he tweaked the Bible a lot. Cruz notes that he quote dismissed the many passages in the New Testament about wealth and poverty and instead assured the elite that their worldly success was a sign of God's blessings. This is a huge hit. He I mean again he makes $13 million in the space of a few years, like 4 years to get his church out of debt. He is very good at this. If you've if you've ever read Douglas Adams is I think the 5th book in the Yes there was a there's a character where. Ford Prefect goes to this planet and there is a sex worker who explains that her job is telling rich people that it's OK to be rich. Hmm. And that is exactly what that guy's job is. Yeah. Is that that is literally the whole thing. He's doing the whole thing. It's just it's OK for you to be rich and **** with everybody. Yeah. Good. Yeah. You don't need to, you don't need to give your money up in taxes. But I'll give some and I'll keep telling you. I'll find, I'll. I'll cut the Bible apart to make you feel like a decent person, actually. Charity to get. Me out of this debt? Yeah. It's like diametrically opposed to the slave Bible. It is. His Bible is the rich person Bible. And then they cut out the different **** for the other. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. So he he he. This is wildly successful again. He makes 750 grand in like 4 years, you know, in donations, which is a ******** of money. So he decides I gotta take this **** on the road, you know? Like, I could this works this well in LA. I could make this work everywhere. He found an organization called. Yeah, yeah. He's gonna go on tour. Yes, exactly. He found an organization called Spiritual Mobilization. Their mission was to quote arouse the ministers of all denominations in America to check the trends towards Pagan statism, which would destroy our basic freedom and spiritual ideals. Pagan statism is the term you will hear a lot. It is the first cultural Marxism. It's directly in that line of lineage to like Pagan statism or to to to where we are now. Like, Pagan statism is kind of like the first boogeyman term they come up with. I can see why they upgraded to. Yeah, yeah, because that was not so great. Throw Pagan in front of anything and it sounds cool as hell, you know? Yeah, that's true. Yeah, that's true. What I hear Pagan statism. I'm thinking of like Romans getting like drunken and and running around the city carrying a bull on their shoulders and ****. That's the time to say dope. Yeah, yeah. Hell yeah. So the specific way Fifield justified Christian capitalism was to argue that God had imbued people with certain rights and responsibilities. We had the right to private property and the freedom of choice, including the choice to be poor. So if the government were to take private property from the rich and give it to the poor, that is a violation of God's law. The church then has a duty to defend against this. So you're not being political by being a capitalist church, you're actually following God's law by. Being a capitalist church. So not only did Christianity invent capitalism, they also created sovereign citizens. Yeah, we got it all. Yeah. So the ideals Fifield was exploring eventually formed into an ideology called Christian Libertarianism, which is most accurately summed up as letting rich people do whatever they want and saying that's what God wants. You know, that's the. That's the idea. I've seen a bit of that, yeah. You, you, you you kind of spend every waking day of your life in waiting through the waters of Christian libertarianism. And Elon Musk weren't great. God wouldn't have given him billions of dollars, right? That makes sense. That's what everyone says about Elon Musk. Umm. One of Fifield's major supporters was Herbert Hoover, the president who had gloriously led the United States into the jaws of the Great Depression and then spent the rest of his life angry that people had voted for FDR when they had a chance to get him out of office in 1932. FDR had one with living in a tent. What's wrong with living in a tent that is Uber hoovers? Like, why don't you like your tents? Come on, it's a good tent. Mm-hmm. FDR won that election, 472 electoral votes to 59. So who? Herbert Hoover is like licking his wounds, you know, he feels pretty onry about this. What were those 59 doing? You can look, you can look it up. There were a couple of states, you know, the bad ones. Nuts. Nuts. 5 bucks says Tennessee is on there. Yeah, I'll just throw that out. It was like there was a it was a union hotbed at the time, though. I don't know. Texas probably was, though. That's true. Texas, yeah, yeah, yeah. Texas. Probably. I don't know, maybe we're getting it wrong and someone's going to get like, up at us on Reddit. I have no idea who those who those states were. Hoover wanted to use Fifield so they started up like a conversation and he and he sees Fifield as like a representative of Protestant Christianity that he can use to snipe at FDR. In 1938 he writes to Fifield. If it would be possible for the church to make a non biased investigation into the morals of this government they would find everywhere the old negation of Christianity that the end justifies the means. So he's like I want you to look into you know this government as an anti Christian government because FDR. Gave people the Social Security Fifield follows her Hoover's advice. Later that year he writes and sends out a tract to more than 70,000 clergymen in the United States and in the tract he says it basically what Hoover had said, and he begs his fellow ministers to follow him in opposing FDR socialist policies, Fifield wrote. Quote we ministers have special opportunities and special responsibilities. In these critical days, America's movement towards dictatorship has already eliminated checks and balances. And its concentration of powers in our chief executive. Which, you know, Jesus said the meek shall inherit the earth. But after the current rich people are already dead and their money is given away right now, well, actually we'll see. 1000 Year, 2003 thousand years or so, the meek will totally inherit the Earth. It's coming. Meet guys. Don't worry. Promise make you stay meek though. Otherwise you're not gonna inherit the earth. That makes perfect sense to me. Yeah, you got it. Yeah. You do have to get be a little fair here when people are talking about, you know, FDR being a dictator. Obviously these folks. Are looney. But also if you are ever going to accuse a president of trying to be a dictator, FDR is a pretty good one. Cause like he he does have a lot of power that he is centralized in himself totally. I mean, on the other hand, he had a lot of folk to fight against. Who? Yeah, right. There was a lot going on. You know, there was a lot going on in that. It's he definitely was the president at one of the toughest times to be president. Did a lot right. Did a lot wrong. Yeah. So Hoover, after Fifield, sends this letter out to 70,000 clergy, Hoover notes, like sends a letter back, like thanking him and and telling him how much he appreciates it. But all of this stuff, it's clear. Like sending out letters to ministers about this **** isn't enough to catch on in any, in any meaningful way. Like, Fifield may have sent this letter out, but that doesn't mean people are gonna start preaching to their congregations that the FDR administration is evil. For one thing, he's the most popular president there's ever been. You know, like, there is that people. He got elected an awful lot. Feel like eating? Yeah, this guy's great. Very popular. And so a lot of these ministers say to Fifield basically. Like, I'm not gonna do this. Like, why is everyone he the the only reason my mic by my congregation haven't starved to death is this guy. What are you talking about? Yeah and of course there's also the fact that you know, churches are tax exempt, but there's ways they can lose that by lobbying directly politically. So there's a lot of there were there were there were, there were. He's got a lot to overcome and he writes this letter, Hoover likes it, but it doesn't do anything. So Fifield on his own, you know, he's he's accomplished a lot in his little church. He can make rich people feel good. He's not going to change Christianity all in his own, but the Nam has the resources that might allow him to do this and kind of on their own. They're not going to be able to make any of this, make inroads, but together they can be an Oreo of ******* up democracy forever, like a Voltron of **** like a **** Voltron. Yeah, so in 1946, with the Cold War, in its early days in World War Two, behind us in AM PR department commissions, a poll from the Opinion Research Corporation to determine which groups did the most to shape public opinion in the United States. Ministers topped the list, and I'm going to quote now from a doctoral thesis by Carmen Celestini of the University of Waterloo. Quote in AM interpreted this finding is being potentially harmful to the American people because, according to Nam, ministers tended to be on the very left both socially and fiscally. Nam members decided to take on the responsibility to halt a broader American swing to the left that was led by the clergy and influenced by the Social gospel of the early 20th century, Robert Wilson, the board chairman of the Standard Oil company at the time, wrote. Or what's the practical minded men of business? Take the time and trouble to point out the facts of history and the serious flaws in these widely touted. Old world systems that have failed so miserably in practice. Church leaders are likely to be swung to the left. They will hear only one side of the questions from left wingers who do take the time to talk with them and on them. Oh my God, you lost that impression. Had no I felt like he was here. I felt like he's alive. I felt like he was trying to bring him back. Tried to bring Bobby Wilson back. Like, look, do you know who my favorite person on SNL was? Jimmy Fallon. That was my favorite one because he never did a good job. OK, I I do. I did. Like, you know, the the beautiful thing about Jimmy Fallon is that it's it's proof that you don't need to be funny or talented or good at talking or good at anything or even legally a human being to be a a popular television host. It's gotta be nice. Hmm. So the the Nam launches a bunch of PR campaigns, kind of based on Wilson's idea of trying to explain the facts of history, you know, to to Americans to counter this leftward swing of the clergy. And this is like a a full court press by 1949. There's print radio, TV ads, billboards, all aimed at mobilizing Americans against socialism and for Christianity. Celestini continues. Quote an initiative was led by Charles E Wilson, General Electric's president under the religion. In America, an American life RIYL committee, which was a religious public relations campaign sponsored by corporations, religious leaders, and the American government. As historian John P Herzog described in this successful 10 year campaign, used celebrity endorsements to convince Americans that religious participation was a normative act. So they're kind of, they're trying to like, make the case. In this that like socialism is anti religion and religion isn't Christianity is inherently American. They're not yet saying capitalism is inherently Christian, but they are. This whole effort is sponsored by like General Electric and **** right? So you can see this stuff starting to get tied together. 19 You gotta lay the groundwork a little. Gotta lay that groundwork. That's what they're trying to do here. And in 1934 in AM spent $36,000 on PR. In 1937 it was $800,000 and it goes up from there. So they are they are like massively increasing their PR budgets to put this propaganda out there. One technique they pioneered, they're the first people to do this is they had a speakers Bureau that would get speakers into public schools to talk to kids about Christianity and against socialism. They also were the first to build a press service. That would provide editorial articles for newspapers to publish just like, well, here's how. Like, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. They're, they're, they're they're the first people doing that. And they're the, this original eventually reaches more than 7500 newspapers in the United States that they they put editorials in. This is a massive propaganda effort. Like, I I understand that this is obvious and fundamentally a little naive, but, like, that's not fair. It's not. It's not. It's not like it's cute. He's like, it seems like it should be easier to convince people like, of of my positions on things just by telling them that. Because it seems so obvious that it's just like, that's not fair. Like, even if you disagree with my ultimate ends, just like, let's make that fair. Just one thing, let's try and make one thing fair. So it sounds like you don't like freedom. Yeah, hate it. It sounds like you don't like the people's ability to speak freedom of a couple of dudes to place. 7500 articles in the newspaper. Only freedom and oppression ban. But what is that other than speech? It sounds like you don't like the First Amendment. I you know what? I probably would have been a bad Supreme Court. I think we've. I think we found the pinko. Dan, let's get Hoover on the board. Diaper doper baby over here. You know who else will purge the Reds from our mist? Who's that? The these products and services? Ohh I got there actually exclusively purchased children from their parents homes and puts them on their island off the coast of Indonesia where you can hunt them for sport and coming soon to little St. James. Yeah, coming soon to little St. James. 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I've never seen less enthusiasm for a great idea in my life. Yeah, we're back, so. As we've talked about, this propaganda campaign that the Nam carries out has reaches a **** load of people, but it also doesn't do the trick. It is not as successful as they want it to be because it's really crude and obvious propaganda, and I'm going to quote from Kevin Cruz again here. Ultimately, though, industry self promotion was seen as precisely that. Jim Farley, chairman of the Democratic Party, joked that another group involved in this public relations campaign, the American Liberty League, really should have been called the American Cellophane League first. It's a DuPont. Product Farley equipped, and second, you can see right through it. Even President Franklin Delano Roosevelt took his shots. It has been said that there are two great commandments. One is to love God and the other is to love your neighbor, he noted soon after the Liberty League creation. The two particular tenets of this new organization say she you should love God and then forget your neighbor's. Off the record. He joked that the name of the God they worshipped seemed to be property, which is yes, absolutely. Yeah. I mean, you could have, you could have put the nail on the head with the molock, but, you know. You still, you still crushed it. I I'm still proud of him. So this effort that the Nam is like and the the part of the Nam that kind of like Wilson is, is, is, is leading the they're trying to support public religion, make the active religion anti socialist and tie that into capitalism just by the fact that it's sponsored by corporations, right. It's kind of a subtle thing compared to what Fifield is doing. Reverend Fifield wants to make Christianity capitalist and celebrate wealth as the evidence. That God loves you. And that is like, you know, there's that chunk of the Nam that's kind of going about it a different way. But there's increasingly, in the 40s, a group of guys in the Nam who start to see what Fifield's doing. And they're like, no, no, no, no, no. This is the way, this is what's gonna ******* work. And the two men who are leading that charge that the Nam are Jasper E Crane, who is a DuPont executive, and Jay Howard Pugh. Now, does that name sound familiar to you guys? Pew Pew doesn't mean anything to you. Pew, Pew, Pew, Pew. I mean, there's that. They've never heard of the People Research Center. Listen, listen, if you expect me to know that **** you're way off. No. You've heard of like the Pew poll? Pew Research. Yeah. Well, yeah, well, yeah, yeah, that that's that's who this is. What do you think he came up with? Church benches legitimately, 100% thought he came up with church benches. OK, I know you think that's a joke, Johnny Pew. Everyone was just standing for centuries before Janet being named them. Then it had to be a guy. Pure no. Hugh is Pew is the namesake of the Pew Research Center. He and his brother are. He and his brother are both rich business guys, and they start an organization called the Pew Charitable Trust. And in 1996, the Pew Charitable Trust starts. So before the Pew Research Centers, the Pew Research Center, it's owned by the Times Mirror Company and it's doing polling through there. And in 1996, the Pew Charitable Trust starts funding the times Mirror Companies Research Center, and it gets renamed the Pew Research Center. So. That's where the name of the Pew polling does. He does not found Pew polling, but it is founded like in his name by the organization that he helped to found. So Jay Howard Pugh was the founder of Sun Oil Company and one of the wealthiest men on the planet. Sunoco, right. Like that's that's this dude and he has all of the money ever him and a DuPont. Yeah it was. It's literally him and a DuPont, right. Like it is talking about how tough it is to the oligarchy. Oligarchy you can possibly. Yeah, good time. Yeah, definitely. These guys had strong opinions on yacht racing and no questions. How are we gonna fix the World Series this year? Yeah, that's what I'm yeah. Yeah. So Jay Howard Pew dedicated a lot of his time earlier in his life to supporting the Republican Party. He backed a slew of anti New Deal organizations with names like Sentinels of the Republic, The Crusaders and the Independent Coalition of American Women. When he founded his Jay Howard Pugh Freedom Trust, he stated that its mission. To warn Americans about socialism, welfare statism, Marxism, fascism, and any other for like forms of government intervention. To acquaint the American people with the values of the free market, the dangers of inflation, the need for a stable monetary standard. And again, Pew, like all these other guys, these are like America first types, but then fascism. You can't support fascism because about half a million Americans die fighting it. So we know fashions been Marxism are the same, same thing, same. Ignore the 20 million dead communists. You know why? What are you gonna complain? Get out of here. Same thing. Yeah. And obviously fascism only ever gets to power with the buy in of the wealthy. But, you know, that's the story for another day and a story we told a couple of years ago. Yeah, I was gonna say that's a story for literally every story you tell. Yeah, that that's just a story for forever. That's just the full story. So Hughes first big attempt to culture jam his beliefs about capitalism into mainstream religion came through his work with an organization called the Layman's Council for the National Council of Churches. The NCC is like this big. National church organization. And his goal was not to put politics in the NCC first. He just wanted to push them to not be political because he thought the clergy was so left wing that you could never, like, turn them right. So the best you can do is get them to not talk about politics. And he eventually gave the NCC up as hopelessly liberal. And when he reported back to his Nam colleagues about the fact that, like, hey, we're not going to get, we're not going to get these leftist ministers to stop talking about socialism, his buddy Jasper Crane agrees that. The NCC is a lost cause now. Crane had made his millions in plastics, and, like Pew, he spent them backing a variety of far right causes, including a newspaper he called the Free Man. He was heavily involved in. Princeton's theological is that slave? Yeah, he's a slave to me. And he kept up a bracing correspondence with different pastors. When push came to him complaining about the NCC, he wrote quote this nation under God was the slogan of the National Council of Churches when it was organized. And I have always felt that it was an incomplete quotation that has been improperly used in some quarters. What Lincoln said was this nation under God shall have a new birth of freedom. That has sounded magnificent. For Liberty comes from God and freedom. Its environment is maintained by the state. the United States of America dedicated to freedom affected the the separation of church and state. But that in no way threw over the doctrine that this nation is under God's governance. So you see why they're want under God to be added to things, right? Because under God, yeah. To them, means God wants you to be free. Freedom is property. So by saying this nation is under God, we are saying this nation has to be dedicated to the preservation of property rights. That's the argument he's making. It's like an entire speech is just like, shut down to just like, I feel like you guys are incapable of critical thought and they're all like, you are we? Yeah, totally. You were. Yeah, you're the smartest dude I've ever met, 100%. Yeah, ohh boy. And Dan, we are coming up to a quote you're gonna like. So I think that might be the first time I've come across an idea that is now very normative in right wing circles that like separation of state doesn't mean this isn't a Christian country. And to crane into Pew, Christianity and capitalism were hand in glove. They very much are in agreement with Fifield about this and crane and Pugh exchange letters that we have. And in one of these letters Crane writes that the United States was presently mired it quote with ensuing bewilderment. Terror, mounting crime, juvenile delinquency, sin, suffering, and sorrow as the different manifestations of socialism have spread across the world. Communism, fascism, national socialism, interventionism, Fabian socialism, the New Deal, the welfare state. The danger becomes acute. Civil civilization with liberty and human dignity seems doomed. List five more things. Yeah, I do love we gotta. Fabian socialism. You're all about Fabian socialism, Dan. I'm all about it. I mean, I guess Alex yells about it a bit. Yeah. I learned about it from watching you and talking about Alex. Did you sound like you're talking to like a dad? Like I I'm doing these drugs and I learned watching you from watching you. So Pew and Crane, you know this is a dark hour for them. They're they're they convinced civilization is doomed because they're the rich are being taxed and they could have been a great comedy duo in Britain. Pew and then great great. Yeah. Pew and Crane I would watch the **** out of that pie is at the King in Buckingham Palace of Amazing. Pew. Crane in the Fife. Ukraine. In the Fife, yeah. Yeah. Hey they call him Doctor Pepper cause he drinks a lot of soda. That would have been a that would have been a better world. So yeah. They they decide after this thing with the NCC fails and they see like the propaganda that their buddies in the Nam coming up with just does not seem to be sticking the way they want it to. They decide to invest in Reverend Fifield now. Pugh was well aware of Fifield's work and while he while he admired the Christian libertarianism that Fifield supported, he was really cynical about the hands off approach that Fifield took to actually spreading his ideology. These like letters that he's sending ministers. Fifield mainly just like shotgun to essays and arguments out to ministers. And he had on his mailing list, but he believed in leaving the details of what they should do up to the individual ministers. He didn't want to actually tell people what to do. And Pew wrote about this quote. I am Frank to confess that if Doctor Fifield has developed a concrete program and knows exactly where he is going and what he expects to accomplish, that conception has never become clearly defined in my mind. So he's he's kind of critical about this guy. But Pew was savvy enough to realize that NAM's propaganda has failed, one of his colleagues in the organization reported in 1945 quote of the approximately 30 preachers. Whom I have thus far talked. I have yet to find one who was unqualifiedly and impressed. One of the men put it most typically for the rest when he said the careful preparation and framework for the meetings to which we are brought to is too apparent, we cannot help but see that it is expertly designed propaganda and that there must be big money behind it. We easily become suspicious. So, like what you're doing is obvious. So, alright, alright, bail on the ministers. Now we gotta go for the kids, OK? They're not smart enough to cut through our ******** so let's convince that they're their children to support capitalism. They are going after the kids. Yeah. Yeah, that's the plan. I also, I also like the idea that there's that that realization of like this propaganda is too good. Yeah. No one's going to fall for it. It's so obviously well funded. It's really shamefully obvious. Oh my God, this is when these Twitter, Twitter account. Jesus. Yeah. And it's one of these things, you know, what these guys are doing is very self-serving, obviously. And it's it's very cynical and it's easy to believe that they're kind of like doing it. Cynically, but I I don't. I think these guys are believers. I think they really believe what they are saying about Christianity and capitalism. I don't think they're doing this as sort of like a cold. Act of culture jamming. I think they are. They are trying to get their sincere beliefs out into the mainstream part. Feels generous. Yeah. I, I let let me. I'm gonna read a letter to you that Crane wrote to Wilbur Laroe, a prominent Presbyterian, in 1947 about spiritual mobilization fields group because it gives you an insight into how cranes thinking about things they spiritual mobilization have simply stood for liberty of man as a son of God, created as a free being in the image of God. Now, the insistence on liberty is a fundamental principle. For mankind may be termed controversial because it is a revolutionary concept. So is Christianity. Liberty is being attacked and called lots of things which it is not by the fellow travellers and even by many who lack understanding of the truth and indulgent idolatry of the state. A Pagan philosophy, so that that's that's he's he's making like a pretty nuanced theological argument that liberty is property. Supporting property is a revolutionary concept because it means overthrowing the state. But you have to overthrow the state as a Christian. Because the state is a Pagan philosophy. It is a. It is an idol. That's anti God. Like that's what this. I think he believes what he's saying. Hmm. That is a question of I mean, people believed a lot of crazy ****. Yeah. I mean, that doesn't make it OK. Still good. A lot of crazy **** is the question of, like, are these millionaires trying to like, like exploit capitalism? Are they doing it cynically or are they doing it because that's what they believe about it is. It is like a. Question of cynicism. Yeah. I mean, I think it gets to be ultimate, like stupid V evil continuum. Yeah. Like, yeah, of course you're stupid. But where on the evil continuum side are you if you're capable of, like, analyzing how evil your own actions are. Yeah. Do you know what I'm saying? Yeah. Yeah. And that is. Yeah, that is the question. And obviously, I don't. I don't purport to have an absolute answer to that, but I kind of feel like these guys were believers. And I want to quote again, I don't know. I feel like if you get $1,000,000. The only thing you believe in is $1,000,000. You know what I'm saying? Well, but you also, you're gonna figure a DuPont just if you're DuPont. Yeah. Well, yeah, that's kind of what I like. Your your core belief is I would like more than $1,000,000. Yeah. And then everything that spirals out from there. Yeah. But also if you were, if the belief system you live in is Christianity, your core belief isn't just, I want to have more money. Your core belief might be Jesus wants me to have more money. You know, like, well, that's true that. It's it's a debatable point. I'm gonna read a quote by Eckerd. Toy writing for Pacific Northwest quarterly again. Kind of about. Is this. Is this Eckhart tolle? No. No. Eckhart toy. OK. Extra toy. Junior, actually. So far. Still an inspirational person. Mm-hmm. In 1947 Fifield and spiritual mobilization planned to program called Freedom in peril. The plan was to send out the manuscripts of more than 15,000 copies of sermons on the subject of freedom. Ministers across the country were to preach them in October that year. All they had to sign. The return postcard indicating their willingness to preach on the subject of freedom there were built in and incentives in the plan. If they preached one of the sermons on a specific date, ministers would be entered into a contest for substantial prizes. In a telegram dated October 13th, 1947, Fifield wrote to Crane that 25,000 pastors from a wide spectrum of denominations had preached his sermon on the perils of freedom as a part of spiritual mobilizations crusade. So now we have Fifield is taking their money and he has shifted his tactics. Now he is trying. He has specifically. And you get people to do a thing. He's not just trying to convince them of something he's saying, hey, I want you to write. I I want you to write like a a sermon. I've like or I've written a sermon I want you to. I want you to give this to your, your, your, your. If you do, you'll be entered into a lottery. And yeah, you can win money if you read this sermon that's shady. And, like, if you could write a sermon, if it's the best sermon on the subject, freedom, we could like, yeah, you could you could call it the shameless manipulation of faith for corrupt and venal. But Fifield also is a true believer. We have, or at least I I think so, we have the correspondence these guys wrote out, and Fifield feels like he's being sincere in what he says. In 1948, he sent this letter to crane about their next move. I am believing more and more that we will not win our fight for liberty by laying the principal emphasis on the material accomplishments of our American civilization. We must stress the spiritual and cultural accomplishments, the greater justice, and the increase in the solution. Social problems. The results of voluntary corporation should be set forth as against the dire consequences of compulsion. The argument is clinched by the amazing material wealth, the aesthetic enjoyments, and the greater opportunity for the pursuit of happiness. I think following this line of thought, we are in a stronger position to it combat the attack of the collectivists so you see what he's saying there. I think if everybody has a microwave, they'll be a lot happier. Yeah, if everyone has a microwave. And then we say, hey. You have that microwave because of, uh, Christian libertarianism, because this is like and if you, if you back, if you, if you were to get healthcare, for example, maybe we don't get microwaves anymore. Celebrating the possession of that microwave is godliness. Is godliness some form? Yeah. Let's let's remember Jesus's parable of the servants and the talents. You know, like a the master gave one servant one talent and said, bet it on this and you might win a microwave, and then everybody you know didn't win a microwave. But that's what hope is. That's what hope is that you might one day own a microwave, might win a microwave. So yeah, by the late 1940s. You can see all of the pieces for the what we've got going on now and on the Christian right, like you can see all of the pieces are there. They haven't quite been put together yet, but everything's in line. And when we come back in Part 2, we're going to talk about how Fifield Pew and the other plutocrats at Nam struck back at the collectivists like this is now. They've built this machine and it is raring to go. But you know what else is raring to go before you get to that? Also, Hoover mostly was Pennsylvania. Sorry, I looked that up during one of the breaks and I wanted to make sure people didn't tweet it at you. OK, that's what it that's that's what he wants. 1 Pennsylvania. That was most davania. *** ****. *** **** it. Acknowledge. under score fight. Don't tweet anything about Pennsylvania. *** **** it. Yeah, just get out ahead of that ******* hooter. Ohh. Speaking of. Herbert Hoover, he's a big fan of your podcast knowledge fight, which people can find at or wherever podcasts are in existence. So yeah, some of those places. Yeah, I've heard of that. Yeah. We're not on some things, though. We're not on a lot of things. No, that's true. Like happiness. We're gonna put them on Stitcher. Stitcher. We're not on that. Impersonate Dan and Jordan and download and all of their episodes and upload them on Stitcher. Do it. Yeah, you could do it. It'll only take you 1100. Yeah, I would never years of your life. All right. Dan, Jordan. Any other plugs you wanna you wanna throw out? No, I think we're good. I mean, you got a novel, Jordan. Ohh. I do. Yeah, that was that was a while back. People have been uninterested in that. I I mean, you know, I'm working on another one. I'll tell people about that when it's done. Alright. Alright. Well, that's gonna do it for us here at behind the ******** until Thursday when we'll come back. And I'll make you guys sadder than you are right now. Hey. Hello, I'm Erica Kelly from the podcast Southern Fried True crime, and if you want to go from podcast fan to podcast host, do what I did and check out spreaker from iheart. I was working in accounting and hating it. Then after just 18 months of podcasting with Spreaker, I was able to quit my day job. Follow your podcasting dreams. Let's break our handle the hosting, creation, distribution, and monetization of your podcast. Go to That's SP. RE Hey there, it's Ebony Monet, your co-host for the San Diego Zoo's Amazing Wildlife podcast. In this special episode, we're speaking with Doctor Jane Goodall about the fascinating journey that led to her impactful behavioral discoveries on chimpanzees. It wasn't until one of the chimpanzees began to lose his fear of me, but I began to really make discoveries that actually shook the scientific world. Listen to amazing wildlife on the iHeartRadio app or wherever you get your podcasts. 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