Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Liking Things That Aren't True ?

I hate being wrong

I don't mind changing my opinion about things. "Live and Learn" is good advice. My mother always said though, that I'd rather be right than president. So when I find out that I was wrong, it just bugs me (a lot). I guess that's why I get so fired up on the internet so much. Like this little gem that I saw yet again tonight.

I've been seeing this for years and never really looked beyond the obvious lie. You see, Dr. Rogers was from my home town and since he wasn't born until 1931, that alone was enough for me to just curse and move on or mention Snopes and let the poster know on the off chance that they cared about being lied to themselves. Usually the response is something along the lines of, "who cares- it's still true". This sort of thing still bothers me, but I'm just funny that way I guess. I still think that if it's not true then wishing it were just doesn't make it true.
But you know what ?
I was not looking at the whole picture. I was taking the lazy way out.

Here's the deal. (with footnotes)

The quote was from a sermon that Dr Rogers gave in 1984. He lifted it almost verbatim from a work by Gerald LK Smith in his magazine "The Cross and the Flag" in the late 1940's (or early 50's). 

I know - pretty boring history lesson Theo ! But wait - There's More !!!

Gerald Lyman Kenneth Smith (February 27, 1898 – April 15, 1976) was an American clergyman and far-right political organizer, who became a leader of the Share Our Wealth movement during the Great Depression and later of the Christian Nationalist Crusade. (Wikipedia)

What is this Share Our Wealth you ask ?
Share The Wealth was a movement begun in February 1934, during the Great Depression, by Huey Long, a governor and later United States Senator from Louisiana. (Wikipedia again)

Now Long claimed that the Great Depression was caused by the great disparity of wealth between the very rich and everyone else. If he hadn't been assassinated in 1935 it's likely that he would have started a Share the Wealth Party. They actually had a platform that I'll excerpt from here. It looks like somewhere along the way, their message got twisted up a little.

No person would be allowed to accumulate a personal net worth of more than 300 times the average family fortune, which would limit personal assets to between $5 million and $8 million. A graduated capital levy tax would be assessed on all persons with a net worth exceeding $1 million.

Every family was to be furnished with a homestead allowance of not less than one-third the average family wealth of the country. Every family was to be guaranteed an annual family income of at least $2,000 to $2,500, or not less than one-third of the average annual family income in the United States. Yearly income, however, cannot exceed more than 300 times the size of the average family income.

Free education and training for all students to have equal opportunities in all schools, colleges, universities, and other institutions for training in the professions and vocations of life.

The raising of revenue and taxes for the support of this program was to come from the reduction of swollen fortunes from the top, as well as for the support of public works to give employment whenever there may be any slackening necessary in private enterprise.

This message somehow got completely flipped around. The whole "take from the rich and give to the poor" thing turns into "I got mine and it sucks to be you". Which is okay I guess. You don't have to agree with my world view and I can (and do) have an opinion about yours.
(just kidding - not you really, just some people)
But I ask you. If you're going to be posting stuff for the world to see, doesn't it bother you just a little that you're being lied to.