John McManus on the John Birch Society, What It Stands For and Why It's Been Attacked
The editors of The Daily Bell are pleased to present an interview with John F. McManus, President of the John Birch Society and publisher of the New American.
Introduction: In 1973, John F. McManus accepted an appointment by Robert Welch, the Society's Founder, as the organization's Director of Public Affairs. He later became its president. In this post, he became and remains the Society's chief media representative throughout the nation. He has appeared on hundreds of radio and television programs. Mr. McManus has written and produced numerous audiovisual programs, including the popular DVD Overview of America, which is a moving tribute about America's US Constitutional roots. He has also written several books including Financial Terrorism (1993), Changing Commands: The Betrayal of America's Military (1995), William F. Buckley, Jr.: Pied Piper for the Establishment (2002), and The Insiders 5th Edition (2004). In addition to being a regular contributor of articles to The New American magazine, he serves as its publisher. He is also publisher of the Society's member-only monthly Bulletin. Mr. McManus was named president of The John Birch Society in 1991. Born in 1935 in Brooklyn, he served on active duty as a lieutenant in the U.S. Marine Corps for three years. For six years before accepting a staff position with the Society, he was employed as an electronics engineer.
Daily Bell: Thanks for your time. Explain what the John Birch Society is. What is its goal? Where did it get its name?
John McManus: The John Birch Educational organization was formed to preserve the American system, limited government under the US Constitution and independence. It got its name from Captain John Birch, a WWII hero who went to China in 1940 as missionary for his faith, and volunteered for service with the American forces when the war broke out. He actually led Colonel Jimmy Doolittle out of China after Doolittle's famous raid over Tokyo early in 1942, and that's when the American forces discovered him. General Claire Chennault, the head of the famous "Flying Tiger" organization in China, asked him to join their forces and to serve as an intelligence officer out of Chaplin. So he did that and for three years he performed excellent work for them. He should have been given the Congressional Medal of Honor, but he didn't get it. He was murdered ten days after the war ended by Chinese Communists. Robert Welch, the man who founded the John Birch Society, found out about John Birch long before the society was formed, and he wrote a book in 1954 about the life of John Birch, a real American hero. So when the time came Robert Welch formed the educational organization that we are here, he asked the parents if he could use their son's name and they happily said yes and became members right away, right from the beginning. So that's how we became the John Birch Society.
Daily Bell: Why is the society disliked by the mainstream press?
John McManus: Actually, there are two reasons why they don't like us, and the first one is they don't like to be shown as deficient and second is they want to be the leaders of those who are informing the American people. John Birch Society is actually a new medium of information in competition with all of these others. What we say is different than what they say about almost every issue and consequently that's why they don't like us. They'll do whatever they can to make us seem like fools or extreme, or whatever nasty adjective they choose to throw around like candy to children, and that's why we are not liked by the mainstream media. We are, however, quite frequently liked by the local media, newspapers, small town newspapers where our members are busy, and gain a lot of influence but I don't expect to be treated fairly by the New York Times or Time Magazine for a good long while.
Daily Bell: Do insiders exist? Who are they?
John McManus: They certainly do exist and when we say insiders, what we are talking about are people who are leaders, who have drive to bring our country into a one world government and establish world tyranny. The society has always been accused of being anti-communist, which is accurate, and when communism in Russia seemed to implode, there were a few people who said, what will the society do now that communism is dead? The John Birch Society was always opposed to any form of totalitarianism and still believes that the communists who lead Russia are no less determined to build world government. They just don't call themselves communists anymore.
Daily Bell: What do they want? World government? Why?
John McManus: Well, they want world government, the United Nations, which predecessor insiders of this conspiracy helped to bring about. You wonder who some of the people are we call insiders? David Rockefeller, Henry Kissinger, Zbigniew Brzezinski and Peter J. Peterson – that's a good start.
Daily Bell: Will they be successful? Are they speeding things up?
John McManus: I don't think they'll be successful because I think the American people, especially, will wake up some day and begin to turn things around. Are they speeding this up? Yes, I think they are, and I think they are because they know that the John Birch Society's influence is growing remarkably.
Daily Bell: Are you basically optimistic or pessimistic about the state of the world?
John McManus: I am always an optimist. I think there are more good people than bad. What we have to do is organize the good people. I frequently have said that what we have to do is get good people off the couch and get them to do some heavy reading and get them to do some understanding. Then they can start to spread their own influence. What we tell people is, "You have influence; use it! And use it for something worthwhile." It is certainly worthwhile for people to use their influence to help others to triumph over the terrible education they got in our schools, and to realize the worth of the US Constitution and that it is not being adhered to. If the government of the United States would obey the US Constitution its cost would be 20% and its size would be 20%. That's very simple.
Daily Bell: What brought you to the society? Why have you spent your professional life with it?
John McManus: Well, what brought me to the society is interesting. Back in the early 1960's I was already a conservative and a devotee of William F. Buckley and his National Review Magazine. All of a sudden, John Birch Society was in the headlines everywhere. 'Secret fascists and and anti-Semitic organization was formed and people better watch out for it.' Unfortunately, I bought into that, and finally Buckley came out with an editorial in which he said there were a lot of good people at the Birch Society and what they ought to do is get rid of Robert Welch. It made sense to me because they had painted Welch as a screwball.
I actually wrote a letter to Buckley's magazine that was published, congratulating them for their attack on Robert Welch. And because of that I was contacted by a local member of the Birch Society who asked me a simple question: Are you basing your attitude on what Welch has said or on what others have said of him? I thought that was a good question and a challenge to me so I asked him to show me some stuff the society has said and I began a torturous re-evaluation. I ended up joining the Birch Society and then joining the staff. I have been a staff member of the Birch Society since 1966, giving much of my adult life to it. No regrets whatsoever.
Daily Bell: What is the opinion of the people you work with and those who support the society?
John McManus: The overall philosophy is very much in line with Robert Welch's plan. He said there were problems in the world. One of them was communism, another was collectivism, which you could call socialism, and then he talked about the loss of faith and the rise of the amoral man, people who would do anything, put aside all concepts of right and wrong just to promote themselves. He said those three problems are very, very real, they exist, and somebody has to do something to combat it so I am offering myself as a leader. Eventually I discovered this was the real Robert Welch, decided this man is correct and I want to help, so joined the society. Then he asked me to join the staff. We have about 75 employees and the people who work for the society agree. If they didn't they wouldn't work for us.
Daily Bell: In the past, the society has been controversial. Was Dwight Eisenhower a communist, for instance? Is that still the position of the society?
John McManus: Well, the position of the society was that Dwight Eisenhower helped various communist victories come about here and there. Whether or not he was an actual communist, somebody else can decide that. I don't know; we don't. Robert Welch wrote a 300-page book about Eisenhower and anybody who has read that book doesn't condemn Robert Welch. He ended up saying, "Why didn't somebody else say this?" So the society's position regarding Eisenhower hasn't changed. It is that he helped bring the world closer to a communist world. They didn't succeed, of course, but it is a good example of the kind of thing that is happening and continues to happen.
I have recently written a 40-page booklet called The John Birch Society: Reality Versus Myth. I have gone into all the charges against the society, one of which, of course, is we claimed Eisenhower, that great American, was a communist. Well, we didn't. We certainly pointed out many of the things that he did, including forced repatriation of several million people back to communist slavery, who didn't want to go, many of them committing suicide on trains they were being herded into. We also pointed out the betrayal of the Hungarian revolution in 1956. Robert Welch published the fact that Fidel Castro was a communist six months before he took control of Cuba, and Eisenhower was president at the time. If Robert Welch knew he was a communist, then the government of the United States did, and the president was deficient in telling everybody that he was a great man, this is good for Cuba and so on.
One of the interesting things about Eisenhower is that he choose for his ghost writer of his own book, Crusade in Europe, a man named Joseph Fels Barnes, who was an actual communist. So choosing to have his book written by a communist – you can imagine the flavoring it was given. There is a lot about Eisenhower that should be known and we don't back away from criticizing Eisenhower as we don't back away from criticizing anybody. To simply go around and say the John Birch Society is screwball because they said Eisenhower is a communist is wrong. It's playing people as fools.
Daily Bell: Further to your book about debunking memes and such, it is said that the Rockefeller family purchased Robert Welch's business or was otherwise involved with him, and that the Society is part of a manufactured Hegelian dialectic? Is this just slander from enemies of the Society?
John McManus: Yes, it is. There was a man years ago named Eustace Mullins who wrote a book, which was actually about the dangers of vaccinations and that was the cause that he had taken up. And in that book, for some strange reason, there were a couple of pages saying that Rockefeller had bought Welch's Oxford Candy Company, Rockefeller financed it and whenever Robert Welch needed money he went to the Rockefeller banks and got money from them and so on. It was all completely false; there was not a shred of evidence to back up any of that stuff. It never happened. And over the years I tracked people who had said that, answered questions from a member who was told that by somebody, etc. It is totally ridiculous.
Daily Bell: Give us some background on the society and Robert W. Welch, Jr., who founded it.
John McManus: Robert Welch was born in North Carolina and was considered a gifted child. He was admitted to the University of North Carolina at the age of 12. In the fall of 1919, he enrolled in Harvard Law School to learn the free enterprise system. By 1922, he had had enough of the school and launched the Oxford Candy Company. In 1926, he invented the Sugar Daddy candy and sales skyrocketed. He left the company he worked so hard to build after a dispute with management and started again. Eventually he ended up working for his brother at the James O. Welch Company in 1935 until he "retired" in 1956 to found The John Birch Society in 1958. He guided JBS through its first three decades until his passing in 1985.
Daily Bell: Has the society evolved its views? How so?
John McManus: Have we evolved? No, we haven't. We have always been opposed to any form of totalitarianism. We've always been in favor of the US Constitution and what those serving our country have taken an oath to support and stand by. We might have had changes in tactics and so forth. We used to carry around heavy 16mm film projectors and we went to film strip projectors and now we are into the Internet, so we have kept pace with technology. You could call that a bit of an evolution but as far as ideological evolution, no, none of it.
Daily Bell: What has been its greatest impact? Wasn't Ronald Reagan influenced by Birch views?
John McManus: No, we don't think that Ronald Reagan ever listened to the Birch Society. We've actually put out quite a bit of information showing that the reputation of Reagan as being a tremendous conservative and so forth isn't merited. Our greatest impact is awakening millions of people, letting them know that the instruction they got in the schools they went to was not good, was not accurate, was not helpful. I can even remember my own schooling – whenever it came around to talking about the US Constitution, it was time to fall asleep.
Daily Bell: Do you believe your organization has been the target of assassinations via plane crashes and the like?
John McManus: When Robert Welch stepped aside in early in 1983, the leader at the society became Congressman Larry McDonald from Georgia – a Democrat, by the way. Six months later Larry McDonald was aboard a Korean airliner on its way to South Korea when the plane was attacked by a soviet fighter plane, and he and 268 other passengers on that plane disappeared. I guess we could say that one of our leaders was a victim of a Soviet attack, but the answers were given by our government as to what really happened to that plane and the people aboard it are totally deficient. We believe the plane landed on Sakhalin Island, and what happened to the people after that we don't know. Nobody from the Soviet Union has ever come out and talked about it. So the answer to the question is yes, in that instance, our leader, the man who was at the time the head of the John Birch Society, US Congressman Larry McDonald, was taken out.
Daily Bell: What kind of impact has the society had in terms of expanding freedom in America and in the world?
John McManus: Protecting the system is something that we have done and is still there. We've got correspondents and some members in other parts of the world where the English language is spoken, as we only deal with the English language. I have been to Australia, I've been to Switzerland and my colleagues have been to France and to other countries in Western Europe where a lot of people do speak English. We tell them what we are doing, and there have been attempts to start their own similar Birch Society but they haven't succeeded very well. We are certainly grateful that they even tried.
Daily Bell: You seem to be having a significant impact in the 2000s. Has the Internet helped?
John McManus: Yes. We were a little slow to adapt to the use of the Internet but we are into it heavy now. You can go to JBS.org website and see quite a selection of any issue you want or purchase books. The Internet has been very helpful but we also caution people not to believe everything they read on the Internet. It's sometimes used as a disinformation organ and that should be watched.
Daily Bell: Is your membership growing?
John McManus: Yes, it is growing but not as much as we would like. What is growing dramatically is our influence. As you are probably aware, in the US there have been a lot of new organizations that have sprung up – primarily Tea Party organizations – but there are second Amendment groups, as well. Some of them are fairly old but lots of new ones, too – followers of Glenn Beck, nullification-now organizations have started, Obamacare nullification and so forth, and we are pleased with that. A lot of the people who get involved begin to ask questions and usually there is a member of the Birch Society who has joined the group along with the other people and they start supplying answers. Because of the Birch Society's influence membership continues to expand. We are being invited to speak in front of these groups – I have done it myself and my colleagues. Most of our speakers' bureau activity has been due to a member getting an audience, selling tickets, etc. There are others, not just members, who are doing this and this is a very good sign.
Daily Bell: You have been accused as a society of being racist, homophobic and anti-Semitic. Why?
John McManus: I have always said how much it bothers me when I hear people saying we are a racist or anti-Semitic organization. It bothers me because it's not true, but it bothers our black and Jewish members even more. And yes, we do have members who are black or Jewish. We don't ask people what their skin color is or what their ethnic background is when they want to join the society. It has been a tactic of the Left, and especially the extreme left, to hurl dirty names and we have been accused of anti-Semitism and racism and it is certainly something we are aware of but it has no substance whatsoever.
Daily Bell: Why is the establishment frightened of you?
John McManus: They are mostly frightened of us because of our potential. If the John Birch Society could start a chapter in every community across the United States there would be a revolutionary change in our country, and the revolution would bring us back to what the founding fathers gave us – limited government under the US Constitution and a morally-based citizenship who does things because they are the right thing to do and not just for self-promotion. The potential of JBS has not been reached, only partially, and the great fear of the insiders and the people who want world government, is that our potential will be reached. That's why they fear us.
Daily Bell: Will you see the end of central banking in your lifetime?
John McManus: I can certainly hope so. I think the American dollar is going down and if it goes down there is going to have to be change. So we have taken some steps in alerting people about what needs to be done. We would like to see an end to the Federal Reserve but not overnight; it would be chaotic if it were done overnight. It has to be done incrementally. We would like to see an end to legal tender laws that say only the US dollar is acceptable as payment for debt. That's a bit of tyranny right in itself. We would like to see private mintage; we would like to see people getting back to using gold and silver. There's a bill in the congress right now to do away with the legal tender law, and we are urging members to understand what it is and why, and get their own congressman interested in it.
Daily Bell: How about the military-industrial complex?
John McManus: There has to be a military-industrial complex; you have to have a strong defense. Of course, if you want to have a strong defense you have to have weaponry, but what we want to see instead of the United States going around the world and policing the world, would be to see the troops brought home from Afghanistan and from Iraq and the Philippines and Japan and South Korea, and a couple of hundred other places American troops have been stationed. Our position regarding the military is that it was formed to protect the lives, liberty and property of the American people – period. That's all. Not to police the world or to force people to adopt our ways. If people want to adopt our ways through persuasion that's one thing, but don't force them. So you have to have a military-industrial complex. It would probably be a lot smaller if our government would get back to what we think the military should be instead of spread out all over the world.
Daily Bell: Is the dollar reserve system dead?
John McManus: Not yet. It's on life support. The destruction of the dollar has been brought about by conspiratorial influences. The Federal Reserve was started in 1913 and was largely the work of Edward Mandell House, President Wilson's Chief Advisor, who was a Marxist. He actually wrote a book in which he said he wanted socialism as dreamed of by Karl Marx. He had great influence over Wilson, and he had great influence over the people who brought us into the Federal Reserve in 1913. Of course, the Federal Reserve is one of the planks of the Communist Manifesto; plank #2 is progressive income tax, #5 is the Federal Reserve, #10 is education for all children in government schools – and I don't have to tell anybody why the government would want the kids in government schools.
Daily Bell: Is the EU dying?
John McManus: It is certainly in trouble. I would like to see it die. We are great believers in sovereignty and independence of nations. We even site the Holy Scripture on the subject. Nationhood began at the tower of Babel when some people tried to build a world government and challenge God. God confused the tongues and people who could speak with each other went over here and formed a nation, and people went to the other side and formed a nation and so forth. Nationhood was founded by God almighty, and therefore it is good. World government, which is the destruction of nationhood, is not good. So we are in favor of that. We believe that the European Union has captured the sovereignty of 27 nations. And the history of how they did it, lying and misleading people along the way as to what their real intentions were, is very serious. Plus, when Gorbachev came out and said that the European Union is the new Soviet, that kind of said a lot.
Daily Bell: Is China beginning to fail?
John McManus: No, I don't think so; I think it's doing quite well. China's now calling the tune in America. We are so heavily indebted to China right now, a trillion dollars or more, and China has said they are going to rethink buying any more United States debt. So if we want China to buy more of our debt, we have to do what China wants done so that China is in the ascendancy and the United States is in the decline. It never had to happen but it has happened, and so when things happen you can bet somebody wanted it to happen.
Daily Bell: Are we headed toward a real worldwide depression? Is it a managed one?
John McManus: Yes to both. I think we are headed to a worldwide depression. I think the dollar is sinking; it's under attack from within, the depression is about to be brought about, absolutely. It's very easy to look at the situation and to say, "Well, a dollar that is as sick as the US dollar is – the government ought to be doing a few things that would help to strengthen it and cease it's decline." I asked a fourth grader recently, "Do you think somebody who is heavily in debt should give away money?" And the fourth grader said, "NO, of course not." Well, we have a foreign aid program, the United States government, that admits to going into debt by a trillion and a half dollars year after year after year, yet gives away money. Ridiculous? Well, it's one way of looking at it but the other way to look at it is it's the deliberate way to destroy the dollar.
Daily Bell: Should people buy gold and silver even at current prices?
John McManus: Why not? If nothing else, gold and silver is a store of value and it might turn out it will be the only thing you can use to engage in commerce. I think the current prices are certainly higher than they were a year or two ago but they are still going higher. But I don't give financial advice. I have people call me up and ask, "What should I do with my portfolio?" I say, "Go get yourself a financial advisor."
Daily Bell: What do Americans have to do to return their country to freedom?
John McManus: They have to wake up and get off the couch and stop watching television. They have to realize that they have lived in the most free society that the world has ever known, and they did nothing at all to earn that. But what they have to do is to pass it on to their children and their grandchildren and for generations who are yet to come. That's what they have to do.
So what do Americans have to do to return their country to freedom? Get involved. Make sure you get involved in something worthwhile. There are organizations that have been formed in our country to lead people down a primrose path. That's a mistaken way to go about it, and we warn people not to get involved in organizations that are counter-productive.
Daily Bell: Are you worried about a military takeover?
John McManus: No. I am worried about a takeover in America that might then be enforced by the military. I don't think that the military takeover would come first.
Daily Bell: Who runs the US? Are the people known to Americans?
John McManus: Well, the insiders, certainly. We target the Council on Foreign Relations, a private organization headquartered in New York City. Each administration for the last several dozen years has reached out to hundreds of Council on Foreign Relations members; many of our presidents past have been members of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Council on Foreign Relations was formed to form world government. It actually was the work of the same man who was influential in forming the Federal Reserve, Edward Mandell House. When the US Senate said no to the League of Nations in 1919, its conferees built the Council on Foreign Relations, and they have developed major influence within the government of the United States, within the media, within the clergy. There are only 4,500 members, but it reads like the Who's Who in America.
Daily Bell: Are Americans apathetic or do they realize the increasing danger they face from their own government?
John McManus: Most of them are apathetic but fewer of them are today. There are a lot of people in this county who are concerned. They realize that indebtedness is a very serious problem. They realize that we shouldn't be a decade in a war in Afghanistan without victory and we shouldn't have gone to war in the first place without the required declaration of war that the US Constitution calls for. They are concerned about the poor education that their children are getting in the schools and so forth. So there are a lot of people who are less apathetic than they used to be and of course, we try to stimulate people to get away from apathy and get involved.
Daily Bell: What is the biggest challenge to freedom today?
John McManus: I think the destruction of the dollar. The dollar destroyed would lead to world currency under the International Monetary Fund, The World Bank – something related to the United Nations, to which those two organizations are related. That would be the end of sovereignty, which would be the end of the independence of the United States. There are many ways to destroy our country and the least likely way to invade it with military force. That isn't going to happen but you can destroy the United States economically, and you can destroy it ideologically and I think that is what is going on. So I think the destruction of the dollar is the greatest threat to freedom today and the build-up of the government of the United States and continued subservient nations.
You know, the last time the United States declared war was on December 8, 1941, the day after Pearl Harbor. We went to war in Korea under the United Nations. We went to war in Vietnam under NATO, a treaty organization, a United Nations subsidiary. We went to war in Desert Storm, the first attack on Iraq, under a United Nations resolution. We are still there under United Nations resolutions in Iraq, and the leader in Afghanistan is NATO, another United Nations subsidiary. So our military is doing the will of the United Nations and most of the people in the military have absolutely no idea that that is going on. Nor did I when I served as in the United States Marine Corps in the 1950s. I didn't realize it then, but I do now.
Daily Bell: Are the elite banking families and their enablers growing scared?
John McManus: I think they might be. We've got a candidate here named Ron Paul from Texas, who is probably as good a student about the economic side of the treachery going on as anybody, and the treatment he gets by the major media indicates that they are afraid of him. And if they are afraid of him, then they are a little bit scared. They are scared that their Federal Reserve is going to be replaced. They are scared that the constant bailing out of big industry by the Federal Reserve printing more money is going to stop, They are afraid of that. I want to point out, however, that Ron Paul isn't endorsed by JBS.
Daily Bell: They seem to try to run the world through fear-based propaganda. Is this failing?
John McManus: No, it hasn't been failing; I think it's quite accurate; it's been quite effective. I think it's less likely to fail now. See, Robert Welch, who formed the society, always said that the day would come when the situation developed would be so bad and so obviously bad that a lot of people would turn towards something that could right the ship. I think we are getting close to that point. Others have said it came and went, but I don't believe that. I think that the government of the United States is in deep disregard by the American people, and I hate to say it, but I think that's good.
Daily Bell: Is the world running out of oil?
John McManus: No, just the opposite. In fact, Canada and the United States have had some recent new discoveries and developed recent new technology about extracting oil from the ground. The United States could be totally independent of foreign oil in less than ten years if the government would get out of the way. There are tremendous oil reserves in North Dakota, which I think is the same that stretches over into Canada and goes into Montana, called Bakken. New technology for natural gas and petroleum – I have been reading articles just this week about the fact that we can be independent if the government would simply get out of the way. The discoveries that have been found within the borders of the United States are greater than the discoveries north of Alaska. So I don't think we are running out of oil; I think we have too much government.
Daily Bell: Is the world facing disastrous global warming?
John McManus: Oh, no, that's fallacy. There are over 19,000 scientists who signed a statement put together in the state of Oregon and they are combating the propaganda being spread by Al Gore and several others. We might be in a position where the temperature is a little higher several decades ago, which is probably brought about naturally, by sun spots, etc. But to say that the serious condition of global warming is brought about by human activity is completely bonkers – absolutely nuts. Happily, a lot of people have begun to see through this.
Daily Bell: Should people be taxed to create carbon sinks? Should the UN be in charge of such a tax?
John McManus: Of course not. It was proposed at the Copenhagen Environmental meetings a year or two ago. It wasn't just the United States that said no.
Daily Bell: Should the UN exist at all? Why does it exist?
John McManus: It exists as a challenge to independent nationhood. I can certainly see where one nation can have a relationship with others. Some ask, "If we get rid of the United Nations how are we going to know what is going on in other countries?" By golly, we have Ambassadors in every country, why not rely on them? And those Ambassadors are welcome. And the Ambassadors in other nations should know they are there and just there to explain why the US is doing this or that and so forth. World government, to me – I am opposed to it politically, economically and I'm opposed to it religiously.
Daily Bell: How about the World Bank and IMF? What's your opinion on these entities? Are they weaker or stronger in the Internet era?
John McManus: Well, the World Bank and the IMF are both United Nations subsidiaries. The World Bank and the IMF were put together back at the Bretton Woods agreement even before the UN was formed, and the architect of it was a guy named Harry Dexter White, who was a communist. Most of the leaders of those organizations right from the start were communists. That's my opinion about them. The Bank of International Settlements in Switzerland is a fledgling world bank and I think we ought to be careful of it, leery of it. Anything that leads to world government we should be on guard against.
Daily Bell: We like to report on an Internet Reformation similar to the one that occurred after the invention of the Gutenberg Press. We expect radical change, possibly in societies around the world. Do you?
John McManus: No, I don't think you are going to have radical changes, but the Internet is a valuable tool, and it's valuable for both sides. As I said before, there's a lot of junk on it but there is also a lot of good on it. The Internet has turned out to be a good thing for us to be able to spread our influence, and to give people the idea that there are alternative points of view. But I don't see it changing societies around. You are talking about changing human nature and I don't think it's going to do that.
Daily Bell: Where do you see the John Birch Society in ten years? What are your biggest challenges today and how are you meeting them?
John McManus: Our biggest challenge is to build our organization, to build a chapter of the society in their community. We say if there are 500 members of the JBS in any congressional district, Congress will elect a US Constitutionalist. It's been done, it's been shown that it will be done and we need to get more people to take on that responsibility. There are people who don't want to get involved – they're too busy, they're trying to make a living, raise their family – but if the nation were attacked militarily they would be willing to volunteer, they would be willing to go and pick up a rifle or whatever. But the nation is being attacked. It's not by a military force but by people from within, who have gained power and lorded over everyone.
Daily Bell: Any other points you want to make?
John McManus: My closing comments are we have a great country here, and the Constitution of the United States has been lauded by many students of freedom. I can point to somebody who studied the US Constitution and said it's one of the greatest pieces of work that was ever put together by the mind of men. It's a document to govern the governor, govern the people. The John Birch Society says, our motto is, less government, more responsibility and with God's help, a better world. Less government? How much less? Get back to the US Constitution and as I said before, if the US Constitution was fully enforced, the government would be 20% its size and 20% it's cost. How about the Ten Commandments? Most of them are being completely ignored or violated, so the combination of the US Constitution to control the government and a freely accepted moral code like the Ten Commandments to govern the people, would, we believe with God's help, bring about a better world.
Daily Bell: Any reading material you want to suggest to people? Websites? Books?
John McManus: Come to JBS.org and you'll see more material than you can believe. I just recently gave a speech in New Jersey, and I had a woman come up to me and say, "I am completely blown away." I asked why. She said, "I taught school for 30 years and am now retired and I always told my students how good the UN was and how bad the JBS was. Now I see I was completely off base. Thank you so much for coming here today. Your speech was wonderful." That kind of thing happens, and if people would give us an honest look at what we say and our history, we will win.
Daily Bell: Thank you for your time. Good luck.
John McManus: Thank you. It's been a pleasure.
We've followed JBS and the New American magazine for decades because the Society and its publications helped pioneer the kind of history that seems plausible to us – directed history – in which a handful of wealthy banking families and enablers ("insiders," in JBS lingo) conspire to create one-world government through a series of false-flag events, wars and political control. As a result, it's come in for its fair share of abuse from both the Left and Right. It's been called anti-Semitic, racist, homophobic – and those are just the polite criticisms.
The Birch Society puts a lot more emphasis on communism than we might, but that's been its hallmark since its inception – and in the mid-20th century the Cold War was a big deal. Regardless of its emphasis on communism (which is only one part of directed history in our view) there's no mistake that the Birch Society and its seminal books have had an impact on several generations of free-market thinkers.
The Society's initial heyday was in the mid-20th century when it was relentlessly attacked, but it has obviously stood the test of time and many of its predictions and points of view have been validated by current events. It's been more accurate than Western mainstream media about underlying socio-political and economic trends, that's for sure.
Nonetheless, perhaps because of its success, the attacks keep coming. And a surprising one came from alternative-journalist Eustace Mullins, a friend of the great poet Ezra Pound, who wrote some of the most scathing and intriguing books about the power elite that you'll ever read. Mullins, in our view, had a habit of making mind-bending assertions that may be valid but are not very provable.
That's apparently because he used a lot of information derived from the circles he ran with and the private conversations he had; logically, he may have had some trouble footnoting such perspectives. It did lead to fairly inflammatory allegations.
Anyway, we went looking for the allegation by Mullins and found it in a Rense article entitled, "An Afternoon With Eustace Mullins by James Dyer," posted at Rense in 2003. Here's the pertinent text:
JBS was setup by Nelson Rockefeller. I knew two people at the original meeting. They needed a right-wing, anti-communist organization. NR decided that Robert Welch was the man to run JBS, so he arranged for the sale of Welch's Candy Co. (where Robert Welch had been working for his brother John) to Nabisco (which was a Rockefeller controlled company) at a highly inflated price and Welch was given an income to run the John Birch Society.
Revilo Oliver was a good friend of mine and he was one of the founders of the JBS. He and I were sitting in his living room once and he told me that he knew Nelson Rockefeller ran the Birch Society because he had a revolving fund at Chase Manhattan Bank, and whenever Welch needed a quarter million dollars to meet the payroll, he'd go to CMB and withdraw the money.
We thought at the time the allegation was a little "far out" and thus we're happy to have provided Mr. McManus the opportunity to rebut it. It's an especially pertinent issue given that as the Internet Reformation continues to expand, the Hegelian divide-and-conquer tactics of the power elite come under more exposure and sustained attack.
We've been struggling this past week, for instance, to cover what seems to be an obvious attempt by the power elite to infiltrate and influence the sprawling Occupy Wall Street movement – to turn it into a controlled opposition of sorts. In fact, some allege it was founded with this in mind.
Over the next week, we'll try to concentrate on the libertarian elements of movement, as it is a great deal more difficult to maintain a controlled opposition in the 21st century than in the 20th. People know a lot more thanks to the Internet, which has thoroughly exposed the plans for a One World Order for those who care to look and read. Of course, JBS was exposing Western elites in the 20th century, long before the Internet. Historically, its membership has fought for freedom and against what can be called Money Power.
Followup: We went looking for other information regarding Eustace Mullins's statement regarding JBS and Welch. We found this statement from alternative journo Kelliegh Nelson, in an article entitled "The Tea Parties, Part 3," posted August 2011 over at NewsWithViews:
Third and of special importance is a correction that needs to be made from the first article. I don't know of a journalist or a researcher that doesn't make mistakes from time to time, but I pride myself on targeting the truth and on correcting errors. This time, I made an error by believing an old and vicious rumor that I should have checked more thoroughly before I linked to it. The link was in regards to the John Birch Society founder, Robert Welch.
The link stated that Welch's candy company was purchased by a Rockefeller holding at a large sum of money in order that Welch head up the new John Birch Society. Now it is well known that Rockefeller monies have funded other large organizations, but the JBS through Welch's candy company is not one of them. Robert's candy company had failed and he went to work for his brother's candy company until 1956.
I believe it was in 1958 that he started the John Birch Society. It wasn't until the early 60s that James Welch sold his candy company to Nabisco. Whether Nabisco was owned in part or in whole by any Rockefeller entity is of no importance inasmuch as funds from the sale of James' candy company were not instrumental in funding Robert's new Society.
Posted by memehunter on 10/09/11 04:17 AM
I am extremely surprised to see that the DB is trying to defend the John Birch Society.
The little amount of deliberately superficial research that was done, as presented in the afterthoughts, to convince us that JBS is "clean" could have been greatly improved by going to the source of Mullins' comments, Revilo Oliver himself.
Here is a passage from the Epilogue of Oliver's "America's Decline: The Education of a Conservative", which can be found here:
Click to view link
With the July-August issue of 1966, my connection with American Opinion came to an end. I think that is the point at which to conclude this series of selections. The cycle begun in 1954 was completed in 1966, and I had leisure to look back on twelve years of wasted effort and of exertion for which I would never again have either the stamina or the will.
After the conference between Welch and myself in November 1965, I determined to verify conclusively the inferences that his conduct had so clearly suggested, and, with the assistance of certain friends of long standing who had facilities that I lacked, I embarked on a difficult, delicate, and prolonged investigation. I was not astonished, although I was pained, by the discovery that Welch was merely the nominal head of the Birch business, which he operated under the supervision of a committee of Jews, while Jews also controlled the flow, through various bank accounts, of the funds that were needed to supplement the money that was extracted from the Society's members by artfully passionate exhortations to "fight the Communists." As soon as the investigation was complete, including the record of a secret meeting in a hotel at which Welch reported to his supervisors, I resigned from the Birch hoax on 30 July 1966 with a letter in which I let the little man know that his secret had been discovered.
On the second of that month I had kept an engagement to speak at the New England Rally in Boston, where I gave the address, "Conspiracy or Degeneracy?", which was later published with documentary and supplemental notes by Power Products, a short-lived publishing firm in Nedrow, New York. After the speech, I was warmly congratulated by Welch, who was delighted that it had been generously applauded by an audience of more than two thousand from whom he might recruit more members: he had not yet been informed by his supervisors that they disapproved. They did give him something of a dressingdown, and when I resigned, he had the idea of pretending that he had been horrified by a speech that contained racial overtones, such as well-trained Aryans must always eschew. And he had the effrontery -- which he later mitigated by claiming he had not received my letter -- he had the effrontery, I say, to fly to Urbana, accompanied by his lawyer and a former Director of the Federal Reserve, on the assumption that a poor professor could easily be bribed to sign a substitute letter of resignation, which he had thoughtfully written out for me, together with the article in the Birch Bulletin in which he was going to announce his surprise at receiving the letter he had written for me.
Welch's salestalk was perhaps a little constricted because he had always to speak with my tape recorder operating on the table between us, and since I wished to say nothing that he could later misinterpret, l resisted the temptation to feign negotiations and thus ascertain what was the very highest price he was prepared to pay for my honor and self-respect.
Since that sickening afternoon, I have been unable to think of the little shyster without revulsion and a feeling that I have been contaminated by association with him. I have tried to be not only scrupulously fair to him in the foregoing pages, but to give him the benefit of every possible doubt, and I believe I have succeeded, but it has cost me some effort.
There were other resignations at approximately the same time. Dr. Draskovich, whose personal observation of the preliminaries of a Bolshevik take-over gave him expert knowledge, had investigated the Birch Society's field operations and come to the conclusion that the Society served only to waste in futile and nugatory activities the money, time, and energy of its patriotic members, so that it really served the purposes of the very forces that it professed to be fighting. He resigned with a public statement. The three Directors of Public Relations, the Society's most important officers after Welch himself, all resigned, although he was able to induce them in various ways not to make their departures quite simultaneous. Each of us acted independently of the others, and I had not tried to influence anyone, but Welch characteristically saw a chance to claim that I had tried to "undermine" him and replace him as the head of his racket, and he went slinking about the country with a fifty-seven-page denunciation of me, most of it so libellous that he had to show it only on an "eyes-only" basis to wealthy contributors whom he wanted to continue milking. By that time, he could have done nothing that would have augmented my contempt and loathing, and perhaps I should have felt flattered by the fifty-seven pages. A man who joined the Council long after I left and has recently resigned tells me that he was accorded only seventeen pages of paranoid denunciation.
After that last nauseating conference, I issued to the press an announcement that was widely reproduced:
Professor Revilo P. Oliver, one of the founding members of the John Birch Society, issues the following statement:
"I have resigned from the Council of the John Birch Society (and from the Society itself) because I can no longer in conscience remain a member. I have also resigned as Associate Editor of American Opinion and I will no longer contribute to that magazine.
"I was one of the eleven men who met with Mr. Robert Welch in Indianapolis on December 9, 1958, when the Society was formed. The Mr. Welch who founded the Society was a man in whom I had great confidence.
"Since then, however, changes which have taken place internally in the organization and in its policies leave me no alternative but to dissociate myself from it."
The point here is not to suggest that I entirely agree with Oliver, or that he is necessarily telling the truth, but that there is some basis to Mullins' assertions, that the source can be easily found, and that DB's cursory research does nothing to really address these questions.
As far as I can see, JBS completely neglects the role of Zionism (a topic with which DB also has difficulties at times... ), which is even more ironic given their emphasis on Communism, and also actively avoids any mention of Freemasonry, even though many of its top members were Masons. I'd like to be proven wrong about these assertions. I believe that they are some kind of controlled opposition, attracting patriotic Americans with their rhetoric but not doing much with the millions of dollars they receive in the end (a criticism that has been mentioned elsewhere on the 'Net), certainly not as far as achieving their purported goals and defending their ideals.
Posted by RR on 10/09/11 02:05 AM
"I believe it was in 1958 that he started the John Birch Society. It wasn't until the early 60s that James Welch sold his candy company to Nabisco". QED. Case closed. That was easy. Welcome to the NWO.