News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Opinion

October 14, 2010

Stephanie Salter: More proof (probably, maybe, could be) of the socialist takeover

TERRE HAUTE — When the only tool you have is a hammer, pretty soon the whole world starts to look like a nail.

— Psychiatrist Fritz Perls

As difficult as it is to keep up with the social and political paranoia that grows exponentially each day Barack Obama is in office, I feel I must try. After all, Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert can’t carry the load all by themselves.

So, today, we’ll address yet another e-alarm that is making its way around the Internet, lighting up conservative websites and bolstering the right-wing contention that the president is a socialist.

(This contention is not to be confused with the contention that the president is a Muslim extremist, the Antichrist or a finely honed tool of the Trilateral Commission.)

The e-alarm that’s set off a new round of Bolshevik Barack detection makes much of a redesign of the U.S. Department of Justice’s website. Right, website. The story originated in July with the American Spectator, whose unnamed Washington “Prowler” wrote disparagingly of the site’s new black, white and gold color scheme, which replaced a Bush-era scheme of red, white and blue.

But the paramount sin of the redesigned DOJ site, according to the Prowler’s unnamed sources, is a quotation “prominently placed on virtually every page of the site … credited to a man who facilitated a greater role for socialists and communists at the U.N., and the global ‘workers rights movement.’”

The quote? “The common law is the will of mankind issuing from the life of the people.”

The “credited” author? C. Wilfred Jenks, a British attorney who was big in the United Nations’ International Labor Organization in the 1930s and who — one unidentified DOJ source told the unidentified Prowler — “helped make the ILO a tool of the socialist and communist movement.”

Left out of the countless e-alarms that have sprung from the American Spectator story — and blown off as unimportant by the Prowler — are two interesting facts:

1. Nobody knows who the author is of the “will of mankind” quote. It might have come from Jenks, but it might have come from another Brit, Sir William Blackstone. Or not. Possible/maybe/could-be authorship depends on which anonymous DOJ source is conjecturing to whom.

2. Even better, the offending quote is taken from a longer quotation that is engraved in the Indiana limestone facade of a fairly important building. No, not the Kremlin, the Robert F. Kennedy Department of Justice Building.

Got that? Evidence of the DOJ’s socialist proclivities under Obama is literally written in stone on one side of the DOJ building in Washington, D.C.

And how long has that quote been carved into the stone?

Since the building was completed in 1935.

You would never know any of those tiny details from reading the standard e-mail that is firing Bolshevik Barack fantasies around the Internet. In the most popular version, Jenks is an undisputed socialist-commie and the undisputed author of the quote; his smoking gun “will of mankind” declaration was handpicked by DOJ/White House operatives to subtly advertise the administration’s socialist-commie plan for the world.

As GOPUSA.com’s Kay Daly opined with her version of the story, “The clues as to the direction the Obama Administration is leading us toward are about as subtle as an elephant with a nosebleed in the snow. Let’s work to make sure that after this election cycle, the momentum accelerates so that this Administration’s extremist philosophy joins its comrades on the ‘ash heap of history.’”

Note the clever use of “comrades” and the phrase — attributed most often to Leon Trotsky — about the ash heap of history. Ronald Reagan used the latter in a similarly ironic fashion many years ago in reference to the fate of Marxism and Leninism.

Comrades? Trotsky? A commie-socialist’s quote on the DOJ website?

No wonder a GOPUSA visitor — username “teachermitch” — was moved to post this comment at the end of Daly’s DOJ story:

“Very scary stuff!!! Let’s just continue to pray, educate and prepare to vote soon so this, and many other trends, can be recinded [sic]. Let’s restore that which was good and honorable. Would like to know who, within this corrupt administration, authorized the changes this article refers to in the DOJ site. Any names????”

Yes, any names? Who in the vast reaches of the Obama conspiracy ordered some eager (or beleaguered) DOJ employee to walk out of the building, stand on Ninth Street, write down the long version of an unattributed quotation that has been subjected to dirt and bird doo for 75 years, shorten it to slogan length, then quietly plant it to mock America with socialistic hubris on nearly every page of the redesigned black, white and gold DOJ website?

Very scary stuff, indeed.

Teachermitch is typical of an increasingly common read-and-roar approach to anti-Obama information. The advice to like-minded Americans to “continue to pray, educate and prepare to vote” is typical, too, and especially rich given that these folks’ idea of “educate” is to hit “forward,” “all” and “send.”

Stephanie Salter can be reached at (812) 231-4229 or stephanie.salter@tribstar.com.

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