Editor's note: Below are the video and transcript to Bill Whittle’s speech at the Freedom Center's Texas Weekend, held June 17 - 18, 2015 at the Ritz-Carlton in Dallas, Texas.
BILL WHITTLE: What I would like to do is talk to you a little bit about the history of the progressive movement in broad strokes, because I think one of the things that we do, because we’re fundamentally decent people, is that we treat them as if they were fundamentally decent people who we just disagreed with.
They’re not. They’re not fundamentally decent people at all. As we heard in the last segment, listening to the works of Saul Alinsky, lying is a major part of their entire political statement. They have to constantly lie. They have to constantly tell people something different from what they actually believe because if the American people found out what they actually believed they’d never be elected.
And people ask me, you know, Is it hard being a conservative? It’s hard being a conservative in Los Angeles because that’s where they’re arguing for human rights for broccoli. (Laughter.)
But I’ll tell you what’s not hard about being conservative. It’s really, really nice for me to be able to say one thing and then do the same thing. That’s actually rather refreshing. I don’t have to worry about what I say. I don’t have to be careful about what I say, because what I say and what I do are the same things.
For example, I will ask my attorney to get every single deduction possible on my federal tax return. And that’s not a contradiction in me because I think getting a deduction is a great idea. I think everybody should pay as little tax as possible.
This sets me aside from the big progressives like George Clooney who talk about how we need to raise taxes, and I’m a rich person and I’ll pay even more, and then he sets a production company up, so he ends up paying himself $60,000 a year in income and everything else is sheltered. I don’t have to say one thing and do something else. But that is the history of progressivism; saying one thing and doing something else.
So I thought we’d take a little walk down memory lane and see if we can figure out a little bit about these people.
The great thing about progressives -- by the way, you know, they want to tell you how everything’s brand new. Progressives, you know, let’s move forward.
Progressivism is the most ancient philosophy in the world actually. When you get right down to it, progressivism has been the default state of mankind since language was invited. There’s nothing new about progressivism. This idea of empowering a few of the smart people to tell everybody else what to do is as old as history. There’s nothing new about progressivism.
The only new idea in history is the idea of limited government and individual responsibility and individual people. That idea is brand new. Well, 1776. So this idea that progressivism is new is one of the things that we’re going to talk about today.
But I just want to talk briefly about labels, because labels change, but the ideas stay the same. So we can talk about the history of Republicans and Democrats, and we will, and we can talk about the difference between conservatives and liberals, and we will.
But, ultimately, I think you have to come down to terms that are timeless and fair. They have to be terms that are fair to both sides, not just fair to us, have to be fair to them. And I think the best way to describe these two ways of thinking about people and politics is very simple. I think there are individualists and I think there are collectivists, and I’m an individualist, and I think, in this room, we’re all individualists and we believe in individual rights, individual freedoms. It’s not slandering anybody in here to say that we’re individuals.
Likewise, if we were to go over to a meeting of Friends of Karl, let’s say, we would find the collectivists are also proud of being collectivists. They think that the duty of the state and the group is larger than the protections for the individual. That’s why they’re in favor of socialized healthcare.
Individualists like capitalism because capitalism allows an individual to succeed. Doesn’t guarantee anything, but it allows you to work as hard as you want to or as little as you want to and take an appropriate reward.
There’s a lot of talk, just parenthetically, in this country about income inequality, but nobody in this country is talking about output inequality, because if you measure output inequality you’re going to find that output inequality and income inequality match up pretty much exactly.
So we’re in favor of these kind of things. These are things that favor the individuals. We think individuals mostly should be left alone, and that’s what we like.
Collectivists like socialism. They don't like capitalism because they don’t compete, they can’t compete. What they want is a world where everybody does the minimum. It’s all put into a big pot and divided up equally because they’re losers. Any questions? Pretty simple, really, when you get right down to brass tacks. (Laughter.)
So individualists and collectivists, I think that’s the best way to think about it.
Now, I generally abhor sophistry. I think sophistry, in playing with words, is a very Clintonian kind of thing. I generally don’t want anything to do with it. So I’m not up here to ask you what the definition of "is" is, but just since we’re going to get out of the label stage, let me just say this: I’ve come to realize, over time, that I’m a conservative because what I’m trying to conserve is liberalism. I’m trying to conserve traditional, classical liberalism, the liberalism of the Founding Fathers.
In 1776, 1783, it was a very liberal -- it was a radical -- idea that individual people would have individual lives. That was a remarkable idea. Private property, something that didn’t belong to the king or the state, that is a liberal, radical idea.
Individual rights. The fact that an emperor or a duke or a king or an earl couldn’t just come in and lop your head off or take your wife on your wedding night, that’s a radical liberal idea. I’m trying to conserve all these ideas.
Modern liberals, as David Horowitz says all the time, are not liberals at all. They’re about slavery and they’re about control. They’re about control. We’re about freedom. So, anyway, so much for the labels.
So let’s talk about our friends, the progressives on the other side of the aisle. As I said before, there’s nothing progressive about progressives. I think the first example of progressive thought goes back to a guy named [Gaius Gracchus], who was a Roman, lived 150 B.C., and just as the republic was starting to lose its timber, Gaius Gracchus said, You know what, we ought to take money out of the treasury and out of the granaries and we ought to give free bread to people in exchange for their support. Let’s just give everybody free bread in exchange for their support, for their political support.
So fast forward 100 years to 55 B.C., and Cicero says, this was a catastrophe. And it was a catastrophe because nobody worked anymore. So in 55 B.C., 55 years before the birth of Christ, they were already looking back at progressivism’s failures of 100 years before. (Laughter.) So this is the big new idea that we’ve all gotta follow. Lean forward, right over the cliff. Nothing progressive about progressivism.
This idea of progressivism, collectivism, can best be summed up in our Madam Clinton’s philosophy of her book, It Takes a Village. Everybody thinks, oh, it takes a village. That sounds nice. We’ll all cooperate. Yeah, it takes a village. That’s great.
Well, you know what some of these follow-up ideas are on It Takes a Village? If it takes a village to raise your children, then that means it takes a village chief, right? If you got a village, you gotta have a chief, right? You got a bunch of people on their own, nobody’s in charge, nobody’s telling anybody else what to do, but if it takes a village, you need a village chief, and guess who she has in mind? (Laughter.)
If it takes a village, it also needs a village idiot, and -- (laughter) -- and that guy’s riding around on a golf cart instead of working. (Laughter.)
And, by the way, for those of you, especially in Texas, I’d like to point this out, but it’s not flip. I’m serious about this. One of the things that people say about President Obama is, well, at least he’s smarter than that idiot George Bush. My response to this is, well, before they became president, one of these guys was a supersonic fighter pilot, and the other guy handed out forms. Which one do you think is harder? (Laughter.) Which one do you think’s harder? (Applause.)
Yeah, well, Obama went to Harvard. Bush went to Harvard and Yale. Just a little thought.
But this idea of it taking a village, of course, is the fig leaf that they use. It’s good for everybody. See, it’s good for everybody. You don’t want children to starve, right? You can’t take care of your own children. Well, I’ll take care of them for you. Somebody has to be in charge. I guess, out of my love of service, I’ll step up and be the village chief and fly around in a private jet with four engines and the backup jet behind it. Right?
When you really get right down to it, if you really want to talk about peeling the curtain away from these people, what you find is -- and I mean this. This is really the whole game. Socialism and progressivism is a scam designed for a few elitists to use the fig leaf of fairness in order for them to get the rewards that they could never get on their own. (Applause.)
If anybody thinks Barack Obama has enough talent to be able to afford a 747 on his own, we know this isn’t true. Barack Obama could not run Walmart. Barack Obama couldn’t run a Walmart. (Laughter.) They just are stealing your money, and that’s how they do it.
[Let’s have a look] through history here. So we talked about the Romans. Even in 55 B.C, with Cicero, progressivism was a 100-year-old failure, but we can talk about kind of the modern aspect, the modern rise of collectivism. And the best way to do this -- happy how history provides so many clear examples, if we just go back and read it -- because let’s talk about the tale of two revolutions.
There were two revolutions that occurred at the end of the 1700s, and one of them was the individualist revolution, and the other one was the collectivist revolution. So let’s take a look at the collectivist revolution first, even though it happened about 10 years later.
The French Revolution was predicated on this idea of a collectivist future -- Liberty, Equality, Fraternity. We’re all for the Liberty in America, but the Equality is a trap and so is the Fraternity.
What the French Revolutionaries tried to do was create a new man. They literally called him a new man. And we’re going to have a new calendar, too. It’s going to be a decimal calendar. There are going to be 10 months in the year, and we’re going to have a 10-hour day. Why? Why not? Why not? It’s a chance to tell people what to do.
And so what these collectivists did was they said, well, see the problem is it’s all the rich people. It’s the aristocracy, and it’s also the religious people. It’s the priests. That’s why everybody’s miserable. So let’s kill all of those people and then we’ll all be happy. And that’s what they did.
They started what was called the Terror, because during the French Revolution if it turned out you didn’t like somebody, if you thought their wife was kind of hot or if you wanted their house or whatever it was or if somebody had been mean to you in the street, you could simply point to them and say, J’accuse. I accuse you. And that’s that. Off they go to the guillotine. And the rivers of France, and especially in Paris, started to run red with blood.
But that wasn’t enough, you see, because the thing about progressivism is it eats its own. Once you set up a political philosophy based on murder, then murdering other people is how you get ahead in the world.
And so the Terror was not only sustainable -- wasn’t sustainable. It was replaced with something. You know what the Terror was replaced with? It was replaced with something called the Great Terror, because the first Terror wasn’t bloody enough.
Things really got into overdrive, thousands of people being guillotined in a single day. Literally rivers of blood running through the streets of Paris to get to this collectivist ideal of paradise on earth. If we just kill the rich people and just kill the religious people, then everything will be fine.
But guess what? There’s always more people to kill, and they kept killing them. And, finally, when it was all said and done, they said, you know what? This idea sucks. Bring us an emperor.
It’s a catastrophe. It alone should have put this ideology out of business for the rest of human history. They killed and killed and killed and killed and killed, and when they couldn’t kill enough people, finally, they threw up their arms and said, give us a king back. And Napoleon came along and took them at their word.
Catastrophe and murder and bloodshed and death and terror, terror, terror. Keep that idea in mind, because if you’re going to whip everybody into slavery under your command, you gotta find a way to motivate them. And they can’t motivate them through leadership, so they use fear. That’s the French Revolution.
Now, just a few years earlier, on the other side of the Atlantic, there was another revolution, but this was the revolution of idealists and mostly the revolution of individualists. And if you want to look at the guillotines as the example of a collectivist revolution, the best example you can come up with on the individualist revolution happened just before the actual war started, but the shooting had already started.
Best example to understand the difference between these two ideologies is to look at the example of the [man] who would become the second president of the United States, John Adams, because British soldiers were on trial for having fired into a crowd of American citizens. They were on trial for their lives. British soldiers were on trial for their lives. There was no question that these men actually shot these people, no question that the civilians were unarmed. This is not up for discussion.
If anybody should have been sent to the guillotine it was these British soldiers for opening fire on American civilians. We captured these guys by every single law of the universe and warfare. We should have just chopped the heads off and that would have been the start of it.
But John Adams said, wait a minute. These are individual men who are terrified. They’re foreign. They’re soldiers in a foreign land. They’re under extreme pressure. They’re under a great deal of stress. Somebody may have fired a gun off on our side. Reasonable doubt says these men should go free, and they did go free.
That’s the difference between these two ideologies, between what we believe and what Barack Obama believes. The collectivists believe if you’re wrong, eventually, you’re just going to have to kill these people to get heaven on earth.
The individualists say, no, people are flawed. People have mistakes. People do crazy things. These people were under stress. Let them go, and so opened the first page of glory in the American experiment, which has been with us ever since.
If you want a better example of the difference between these two ideologies, I don’t know how you’re going to come up with one. Hundreds of thousands, maybe millions of people just executed by having a finger pointed at them versus soldiers in uniform firing on civilians without any question of their guilt being let go because the individualist understands that people are people and people make mistakes.
If you’re not proud to be on this team, you’re probably missing a chromosome of some [kind], because I’m burningly proud to be on this team, burningly proud.
So there’s the two revolutions. Now, a couple of hundred years go by, 150 years go by, and the collectivism starts to rear its ugly head again. It had all throughout the recent history, but really began to take notice in Italy, because in Italy, before Adolph Hitler came to power, really almost 10 years before, kind of a lunatic, former socialist named Benito Mussolini marches on Rome and takes power with an organization and a philosophy that he called Fascism.
Now, we Tea Party people, we conservatives are called Fascists by the actual Fascists and we’re called Nazis by the actual Nazis, but let’s talk about what these words mean because, if you understand what the words mean, you won’t ever let them get away with that with you ever, ever again.
The word Fascism, this idea of a militant nationalistic state that controls everything and has everything bent to its will, is taken from a Latin word, and the Latin word is fasces, fasces. Makes sense, fasces, Fascism. We believe in Fascism because we like the example of a fasces. What is a fasces?
Well, fasces is a Roman term and it means a bundle of sticks or maybe a bundle of hay, and the reason the Fascists took the term fasces as an example of what they wanted to do was what they were saying is an individual stick or an individual stalk of hay is easily broken. You can break these all day. But if you put a bunch of them into a bundle and wrap them up, you can’t break the bundle. It’s a sign of strength for them. That’s the way they looked at it. That’s why they took the fasces as the example for Fascism.
If you look at the Italian logo, you see that it is, in fact, a bundle of sticks. That’s what Mussolini used as his logo, a bundle of sticks, a collective, a group, a collective, the strength of the collective, the strength of the big state.
We’re against collectives. We’re in favor of individuals. We don’t like big states. We like little states. We’re not Fascists. We’re anti-fasces. We’re anti-Fascist by definition. They’re the Fascists. They don’t even know it, because they’re idiots, but they don’t even realize that their entire philosophy of collectivism is the definition of a fasces. They are disciples of the idea of a fasces, that makes them Fascists, and we’re against those guys, and that makes us anti-Fascists.
Any questions, you morons out there in the next county or just -- honestly, it’s so easy sometimes, but that’s really what it comes down to.
Of course, the Italians are really pikers in this regard, because the Italians fundamentally are fairly, you know, life-loving people, and when it came time for them to be annexed by Germany after Mussolini was overthrown, they were pretty reluctant to turn their Jews over, at least less reluctant than the Germans were, because we know that after seven-eight years of Mussolini being in power an unknown Bavarian corporal watched this entire power grab in Bavaria, and he decided this was not a bad idea. And I’m sure you know who that guy’s name is.
Adolph Hitler started an organization. Now, I didn’t name the organization, because I hadn’t been born yet. You see? I was born in 1959. The organization was named in 1921. So it’s not me that decided to call these people the National Socialist German Workers Party. I didn’t come up with that name. They came up with the name. But you can’t spell Nazi without National Socialist Workers Party. They’re socialists.
Now, you talk to a progressive today and tell him the Nazis are socialists, they’re going to have a cow. They’re going to go absolutely ballistic. No, no, no, no, no, no. No. The Nazis were anti-socialists. No, the Nazis were anti-communist, but they, in their name, referred to their movement -- they didn’t call themselves Nazis. They called themselves National Socialists. We want a National Socialist cinema. We want a National Socialist economy. We want a National Socialist army. We want National Socialist ideals to be spread through National Socialist children’s groups.
Of course, they’re socialists, and how can you tell they’re socialists? Well, they’re in favor of the things that good, old American socialists are in favor of today. First thing we’re going to do is take the guns away from everybody in Nazi Germany. You know why? Because armed people are harder to put into a cattle car. That’s why.
And if that’s your plan downstream, the first thing you want to do is get those weapons out of the hands of the common citizen. So the first thing they do is disarm their population. Guess what the American collectivists want to do? And for the same reasons, right?
Why is it, by the way, that our progressive friends across the aisle are constantly talking about gun control and never talking about crime control? Don’t you find that interesting? I find it very interesting. No, they want the guns out of the hands of the people because they understand that an armed population’s a little harder to push around, and that’s a [bug] for them.
What else do the Nazis have in common with our people today? Well, giant state control of the media was essential. Hitler and Goebbels, especially, browbeat the media, put them out of business, put editors and reporters who were critical of the National Socialist movement into concentration camps.
The media became the audio-visual department of the Nazi Party the same way today’s media is the audio-visual department of the Democratic Party. You can’t have this kind of tyranny without control of the message. So they had that in common.
What else? Big public-works programs were a big thing for the Nazis. We gotta make jobs. So let’s take all the money from the individual people, send it to the government, and then have the state pay people to do stuff that they should have been paid for by companies.
The Autobahn Project and all these construction projects and all the rest of it, that’s all a big state collectivist idea. It’s the kind of things we’re opposed to. Public health programs, the Lebensraum Program and all the rest of it, these giant, cradle to grave programs for everything.
If you lived in Nazi Germany in the years before the war, you couldn’t go hiking without being a member of a National Socialist group. You couldn’t fly a glider without being a member of National Socialist Flying Club. The politicization of everything, getting politics involved with everything is a state of collectivism, and of all the things I hate about what Barack Obama and the progressives are doing to America, it’s them putting politics into everything. Into everything. I just can’t bear it. But you have to politicize everything if you’re going to be a collectivist because, otherwise, there’s no way to control the message and control the masses.
What else do they have in common? Well, they sure do like a big leader who’s the messiah, and they sure do like taking his logo and slapping it on everything. I noticed that about the Nazis, too, right? He’s the one. He’s the one. He’s the one who’s going to save us. He’s the one who’s going to lead us.
Who’s our anointed successor for the one? Well, we’ll find somebody. As long as one person’s in charge and everybody else takes (inaudible), that’s what they want. And the reason they’re destroying things like states’ rights and municipal rights and all of the zoning things that we heard about before is because if you have individual political groups, then you can’t control everybody, and that’s what they have to do, because they’re genetic mutants. They have to tell other people what to do.
We’ll skip ahead a little bit because, now, just frankly, if we -- at this pace, we’d be here forever talking about the murder and the bloodshed brought by these collectivists. We can duck over to the Soviet Union for a moment, if you’d like. Soviet Union was formed by a bunch of intellectuals, the smart guys who sat around coffee tables and talked politics. The smart people who knew what was better for the masses.
The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics was a murder machine unlike anything we’ve ever seen before. The Nazis attacked another. The Soviets ate themselves. I could spend another 20 minutes -- I could spend an hour-and-a-half up here talking to you about the communists, but the best thing you need to know about the communists is pretty simple. Today, right now, in the heart of Moscow, there’s a yellow building called the Lubyanka. Lubyanka’s a state building. Vladimir Putin had his office in Lubyanka.
Starting in the 1920s, in the basement of the Lubyanka are a number of prison cells, and when the Russian terror really got going under Yagoda and later Yezhov, what you would find is that every single evening, every single evening, hundreds of people would be taken by a secret tunnel into the basement of the Lubyanka, where they’d be put in prison cells.
And in groups of 20 or 30, they’d be taken out of the prison cells and led to an area in the basement of the Lubyanka, which was a large open area surrounded by concrete walls with a lot of water on the floor, cause it was very damp down there.
And up against one of the walls, about the size of these panels, would be six doors, just wooden doors, and people would come from the prison cells. They’d be stopped. They’d be stripped naked, and six at a time they’d be lined up in front of these doors facing away and about the distance from here or so to the wall.
There’d be six NKVD officers with pistols and another guy with a wand, and he would drop the wand and they’d shoot them in the back of the head, and as the guys came up to the doors, there’d be more and more bullet holes in the doors where the bullets had gone through the head of the people who’d been murdered before. Eventually, the doors get shot away and they have to replace the doors.
But six at a time, starting at sunset, going all through the night until dawn, six at a time. Bang, six go down. They’re put on a meat cart. They’re taken to the other end of the basement. Six more naked, terrified people stand up, bang, down they go, six at a time for 30 years.
They can account for 875,000 people murdered in that one building alone, in that one building alone, and it still stands in the center of Moscow, and it’s still the scene of a government office.
Imagine if the Treasury Building in downtown Washington had had a million people murdered in cold blood over two decades in the basement, would you still want to work in a building like that? Would you support a government that allowed a building like that to stand? If it were me, I would have flattened that thing down. I’d put a guard in there and I’d put a plaque with every single name that we could find.
But, no, they’re collectivists. That’s what they do. That’s what they do. Six at a time, bang, bang, bang. Off in a little cart, wrap ropes around their ankles, hauled up naked into a cart, taken out, incinerated in mass graves.
And the thing about the collectivist ideology, about eating itself, is you would have these people, like Zinoviev, let’s say -- Zinoviev was a colleague of Lenin. Everybody thinks this was Stalin. Lenin started this murder machine. Lenin invented the (inaudible). [It was all] Lenin, and Zinoviev was a partner of Lenin. He was an old Bolshevik, and when they started this mass murder, some people, who they knew were innocent, they were going to send to be executed anyway. Zinoviev strongly in favor. Bukharin, strongly in favor of executing these enemies of the state.
Well, eventually, Zinoviev got to be obsolete to it became Zinoviev’s turn. He had a big show trial and he pleaded with his fellow progressives, like Lenin and Stalin and all the rest, Please spare me. I’m a friend of Lenin. Bang.
Bukharin spent four, five, six years in prison writing his friend, Joseph Stalin, pleading letters. Joseph, I’ll do anything. I may have disagreed with you, but, honestly, just put me in a [dacha] someplace. I’ll till the fields, anything, just please let me live. No, no, no. Bang. Bang. Bang. Bang. Bang. Bang. Bang. Bang. Bang. Bang. Bang. No. It’s murder. It’s murder.
And they keep trying it. They keep trying to do it again. They keep trying to [figure], well, we didn’t do it right. Really? How? They didn’t kill enough people, you mean. No, that’s right.
I’d love to tell you this is a fluke, but it’s not. We can move, National Socialist, we move to the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. We can go to China where maybe 50 million people were killed in a forced starvation in order to get this Great Leap Forward going. Some balding guy with an idea is going to kill 50 million actual people, individual people, just like you, no different than you, with their own kids, their own lives, 50 million of them.
Let’s do a little math and see if we can get ourselves a picture of what 50 million people looks like, because one of the great collectivists, Stalin, said, you know, one death is a tragedy. A million deaths is a statistic. We can’t figure out what 50 million deaths are like. We can try though.
Let’s just say, in round numbers, the Super Bowl has 100,000 people, right? Round numbers, 100,000 people in a packed Super Bowl. So let’s imagine we’re outside in the parking lot and let’s watch every single one of these people, 100,000 people in a Super Bowl march past us. Let’s shoot every single one of those people back in the head. Every single one of the men, women and children, let’s shoot every one of them in the back of the head. That’s 100,000 people.
We do 10 Super Bowls. We get one million people. We have to do 500 Super Bowls. We have to do 500 Super Bowls and shoot every single person to get the 50 million people killed. Five-hundred Super Bowls of men, women and children who look exactly like the people sitting across the table from you. This is collectivism. This is socialism. This is progressivism. This is what it does. It kills people. It murders people.
You think they’re worried about calling us racists? You think these people have a conscience about lying about their politics? You think Hillary Clinton, who comes from this background, is worried about whether people think she’s lying or not? They’ve got 150 million dead people on their side of the table, not worried about things like this. They laugh at us. They laugh at us.
Cambodia. You know what could get you killed in Cambodia? Wearing glasses. You wear glasses in Cambodia, chances are you’re an intellectual. What do you need glasses for? To read, right? If you’re reading, you’re probably reading foreign stuff, and if you’re reading foreign stuff, that’s contrary to the power of the state, and it’s a threat to the state, so off into the Killing Fields you go. Seven million maybe. Peanuts, seven million people. What’s that? Seventy Super Bowls. Nothing. Nothing.
And I could do this all day, but let’s just talk with a final example, which is Cuba. I’ve been to Cuba twice. I’ve been to Guantanamo Bay twice. In Cuba, you fly over the -- to get to Cuba, you have to fly over the Straits of Florida. It’s about 90 miles of open ocean. Sounds like, Oh, not a big deal. If you look on a map, it’s pretty close. But at 35,000 feet I’m here to tell you there’s a lot of water between the tip of Cuba and the tip of Florida, a lot of water.
And so when we talk about our progressive friends on the other side of the aisle who have an opinion about socialism -- and I’m a capitalist conservative. I have an opinion about capitalism. These are two opinions. Nobody gives a damn about our opinions.
But I can tell you one thing, not once, not once, not once ever has a dentist taken his family to the beach in Fort Lauderdale, loaded his ancient grandmother and his two-year-old son and his wife and his daughter onto a chaise lounge and strapped a couple of inner tubes on it and shoved off the beach to sail south to get to the free healthcare in Cuba. That has never happened, never, never, ever happened. (Laughter.)
But hundreds of thousands of Cubans have taken that risk to come to America, and hundreds of thousands more just missed the boat. They either sank or they were eaten by sharks or they missed the currents and the Gulf Stream took them out to the North Atlantic.
You think about this. See, this is the thing, we’re so glib about this. We gotta actually visualize being in the water for three weeks and then watching your grandmother slip beneath the waves or watching a [shark] tear your two-year-old son to pieces in front of your eyes before it’s your turn, because that’s what people will go through to get away from that ideology to come to ours. That’s what they’ll go through. This is not an even match. This is not an honorable opponent. People will risk that -- They will risk their lives to get out of there.
No one ever got shot going over the Berlin Wall to get into East Berlin either. That never happened. And if the raft ratio were 60/40, we’d be winning. If 60 percent of the rafts were coming this way and 40 percent were going that way, we’d have a better system, but it’s not 60/40, and it’s not 90/10, and it’s not 95/5, and it’s not 99/1. It’s 100 percent of the people who risk their lives to leave an ideology, risk their lives to leave that ideology to come to our ideology. That’s not an opinion anymore. That’s a fact. That’s a fact.
While we’re wrapping up on international collectivism, we could just add, by the way -- this will be news to Michael Moore -- that the invasion of Hungary was caused by the socialists. The invasion of Czechoslovakia was caused by the socialists. The invasion of Poland was caused by the socialists. The invasion of Korea, which led to the Korean War, was caused by the socialists, and the invasion of Vietnam, which led to the Vietnamese War, was also caused by the socialists, by the communists, by the collectivists. Wasn’t us. It was them every time, because they’re warlike, animal murderers and they want the entire world under their boot. It’s pretty simple, really. It’s pretty simple.
So so much for them overseas. Let’s just look very briefly at what the progressives have done to America. Now, first, this progressive idea, you know, this new idea that everybody needs to be a part of. You swinging kids, you want to get with this new program, right?
Well, the progressive era in America really peaked at the turn of the last century. It’s 120, 130 years old right now, right? Progressivism. And the progressives got themselves elected, and they passed three constitutional amendments, each one a specific catastrophe and each one a little bit illustrative of what these people want us to do.
The Sixteenth Amendment gave us the income tax, the [graduated] tax, the progressive tax, the idea that the more money you make, the higher a percentage of tax you pay. Again, I could do an hour just on this, but the reason that is so destructive is because if rich people pay more in taxes than poor people, you’re basically saying that they don’t deserve their money, that they’re different, that they need to be punished for being rich.
You see, you can’t steal somebody’s money and just call it stealing. You have to demonize them first. Then, it’s social justice, you see. And if you take the blinders off completely, you realize this whole thing, political correctness, all of it, all of it, all of it, is a fig leaf designed to steal money from the productive people and give it to the unproductive people in exchange for their votes, because if they get their votes, we get to go golfing and fly around in 747s.
It’s really just that simple, honestly. We’re going to steal from the productive people, but we can’t take their stuff. We can’t say we’re going to steal from them. We have to demonize them first. Oh, you’re a Fat Cat. You’re a One Percenter, took more than your fair share. That’s what the income tax does. That’s what the progressive tax does, because if it were a flat tax, a fair tax, then this person wouldn’t be any better or any worse than anybody else.
We don’t get to stand in line at a grocery store and say to the person in front of us, hey, man, let me see how much money you got in your wallet, cause if you’ve got more than I do, you’re going to have to pay for some of my groceries, and we’d have to worry about the person behind us having less than us and taking some of our stuff. We’re all paying the same tax rate.
So the progressive income tax not only funds this giant federal tumor, it also sets up the difference between good people and bad people, between evil people and not-evil people, and that’s what it does.
The Seventeenth Amendment destroyed the Senate. The Seventeenth Amendment was essential. Nobody understands the Seventeenth Amendment, but, basically, the Seventeenth Amendment changed the way that senators were elected. It used to be -- imagine -- the Founders had it exactly right. I’ve got a big state like New York, and I have the interests of a big state. And I have a little state like Rhode Island, and Rhode Island has interests, too. Now, what do we do about this?
New York says, We should have more power because we’ve got more people. Well, okay. Rhode Island says, Well, if New York gets to outvote us on people, we’re never going to get [in. To hell with your union.]
So the brilliance of the Founders was to set up a Congress that had two parts in it. You had the House of Representatives, which was based on the number of people. California has more representatives in it than Wyoming does in the House of Representatives, cause we’ve got a much bigger population.
But, in order to protect the rights of the states, they also said, In order to get legislation passed, you gotta get it out of this House, but you have to send it through another House as well, which is the Senate, in which case, California has two senators and Wyoming has two senators. The Houses are equal in the Senate. The states are protected in the Senate.
And so what the Seventeenth Amendment did was these money- and power-grubbing swine came to the American people, used the exact same argument: Don’t you want to be fair? Don’t you want to be a democracy? Yeah. Don’t you want the people to elect senators? Yeah. Sure. That seems fair.
The people have already elected congressmen. They’re called representatives. The senators were sent by the legislatures, the legislatures. So what that means was the two senators from Alabama weren’t there to represent the people from Alabama. The people from Alabama are represented in the House. The two senators from Alabama were supposed to represent the State of Alabama. The State of Alabama was supposed to be protected by those senators.
And by taking those senators and moving them to the people, all they did was create a sort of a rich club of House of Representatives. Nobody’s looking out for the states anymore, which means the federal power can concentrate everything, and if they can get control of the federal government they control everything. It’s a power grab, and it was a very effective power grab. Sure enough, that’s why we don’t have states’ rights anymore, because there’s nobody looking out for the states, because the Senate was destroyed.
And, finally, they passed the Eighteenth Amendment, which was prohibition. Of all the amendments and of all the legal actions that these progressives have ever accomplished, that’s the one you need to pay most attention to, because, frankly, it’s the first time in the history of the Constitution that a freedom was taken away.
That’s one of the great benefits of our progressive friends, taking away the freedom, and a pretty important freedom, too, because if you ever had to listen to Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama speak, believe me, if you don’t need a beer or a shot of whiskey after that, you’re not paying attention. If there was ever a need for alcohol, it’s before, during, after a large progressive speech telling you about how much smarter they are than you are and how much they know what’s better for you than you do, but that’s what they did here.
What about their economics? You know, Barack Obama -- Take out 2009. It’s not fair to hit him with 2009, because that financial crisis of his wasn’t his fault. It was Barney Frank’s fault, but it wasn’t Barack Obama’s fault. Take out 2009.
Barack Obama’s first quarter economic growth has been one tenth of the average over six years. One tenth of the average first quarter growth for Barack Obama. And when we had a Depression coming our way in the 1920s, Calvin Coolidge said, you know what? We’re going to cut taxes in half. We’re going to cut federal spending in half. That Great Depression lasted about a year, about a year, and two years later, there was full employment and everything was humming.
So when along comes FDR in the ‘30s, all these government programs just taking more, taking more, taking more. We now have an 11-year great depression based on progressive policies, not a one-year recession or a two-year recession, an 11-year great depression.
And all you really need to know about progressive policies you can find in the City of Detroit. If you look at Detroit in 1946 and Hiroshima in 1946, in 1946, Detroit is a city of gleaming skyscrapers and brand-new libraries, and Hiroshima is a bombed-out ruin.
Today, Hiroshima is a city of gleaming skyscrapers and brand-new libraries, and Detroit is a bombed out ruin because -- Democrats. Pretty simple. (Applause.)
I’ll just close on this. Of all the damage that the progressives have done to this country, of all of the damage -- and they’ve done a lot of damage -- none of the damage compares to the damage that they’ve done to the racial relations in this country, because their entire governance philosophy is determined by setting a group of tribes against the middle and by getting those tribes as ginned up as they possibly can.
So let’s just have a quick look at the history of the Republican and the Democratic Party as far as race is concerned. 1856 the Republican Party is founded, mostly out of abolitionists. And in the first election of 1856, with John Freemont against James Buchanan, the Republicans were called the Black Republican Party. That was what they used to tar us with. That was the slang they used against us. It was a pejorative term. They called us the Black Republican Party because we’re in favor of black people being free. That’s why they called us the Black Republicans.
In 1860, however, Abraham Lincoln is the nominee, and then Abraham Lincoln goes on to win the election, and this is very important, not many people know this, but when Abraham Lincoln was elected, the seven states of the deep Confederacy were out of the Union before Lincoln took office. He had not been sworn in. He was not president, and the seven states of the Confederacy were out between his election and before his inauguration, because they knew that the election of a Republican meant the end of slavery in America. They knew it. It wasn’t like Lincoln came in and started to abolish slavery. They were out of the Union before Lincoln took office. That’s how strongly they knew this was all about.
In 1864, the next cycle, Lincoln ran in the middle of a war against George McLellan, former Union general, Democratic nominee. McLellan’s motto, and the Democratic Party motto in the middle of the bloodiest war in American history, was, "The Constitution as it is and the Union as it was." In other words, Confederacy, come on back into the Union and bring your slaves with you, and we’ll just say it never happened. We’ll just say it was just a big mistake, a do-over.
After he was defeated, it was the Democrats that started the KKK. It was the Democrats that wrote the Jim Crow laws. It was the Democrats that turned those fire hoses on those black students at the University of Mississippi. Bull Connor was a Democrat. Lester Maddox was a Democrat. George Wallace was a Democrat. They’re all Democrats. They are the party of racism and slavery in America.
Now, you can perhaps shackle or manacle a progressive and lead him to the history books and show him this data, which is incontrovertible, and then they’ll tell you, well, but then the team switched sides. Then everybody switched sides.
Did anybody else get that memo? I didn’t get that memo. Did anybody else get the memo about how we’re switching sides? Any of you out there, lifelong Republicans, you remember when you got that email or postal mail saying that you get to be the racist now and they get to be the good guys? You remember that missive? I don’t remember it, and I don’t remember it cause it didn’t happen. We didn’t switch sides, but something did happen in the 1960s. We did not switch sides, but the Democrats switched strategies, because they realized they were never going to win again.
Now, I’m glad everybody’s sitting down because I’m going to give you a direct quote. Oftentimes you’ll hear this quote softened, but I’m not going to soften it for you because it doesn’t need to be softened. It needs to be heard as it was spoken. In the 1960s, the Democrats switched strategies with regard to black America, and the founder of the Great Society, Lyndon Baines Johnson, the great leader of the progressive movement in America, basically described the plan of this new strategy as follows:
"We are going to have those n---ers voting Democrat for 200 years." That’s what he said. That’s a direct quote. He said it in the presence of many, many people, and you know what? That’s exactly what they did.
That actually ought to be the motto of the Democratic Party, if you really want to know. It really should be the motto of the Democratic Party. They went from oppressing black people through laws and murder to oppressing black people by giving them just barely enough so that they would work on their vote planation.
All they need is an hour’s worth of work from them every two years and the bribe continues. You guys keep your crime to your own neighborhood and we’ll make sure that your EBT cards get a little balance at the end of the month, and we’ll give you a crappy Obama phone, and another food [pellet] just to keep you alive long enough to vote for us next time.
So I want to close on this by saying a little bit about the greatest tragedy in American history, in my opinion. My opinion, the greatest tragedy in American history is not the Civil War. The greatest tragedy -- that war was fought to atone for slavery and a million men died to pay for that price.
Lincoln said, "This war may not end until every drop of blood drawn by the lash has been answered by a drop of blood drawn by the sword," and he was right.
So that’s not the great tragedy in American history. The great tragedy in American history, in my opinion, was when black America picked the wrong side in a debate that gets no attention today, because if that debate did get attention today, we wouldn’t have a Democratic Party anymore.
Around the turn of the last century, around the late 1800s, early 1900s, a gigantic intellectual war was going on for the future of black America in this country, and each side had a gladiator.
The gladiator on the progressive side was a black intellectual named W.E.B. Du Bois, and his theory was, we need to go to white America right now and demand from them, demand from them, money and political power and laws, and then we -- what he termed the Talented Tenth -- we Talented Tenth -- in other words, the elite 10 percent of the black population, the smart ones -- would then distribute this largess out towards the black population, and we’d raise up the entire race like that.
Unfortunately, nobody foresaw that if you give the Talented Tenth all the money and all the power, the first thing they’re going to do is leave black neighborhoods, like Reverend Wright did, and go live in gated white communities. But the Talented Tenth was given the idea that if they would get the money and the power, they’d distribute it to the black community, and that’s the path that we took.
Opposing W.E. B. Du Bois was one of the greatest Americans who ever lived, unbelievably under represented. This man should be on every poster we have. His name was Booker T. Washington. Booker T. Washington took precisely the opposite approach, precisely the opposite approach. Booker T. Washington said to these people who had just been liberated as slaves, he said, those of you who worked on plantations are going to have to go back to plantations, maybe to the exact same plantation, and you’re going to have to work in those fields for pay, so that your children can be mechanics, so that their children can be doctors.
And Booker T. Washington said you cannot demand respect. You can only earn respect. Booker T. Washington said to black America, in order for us to integrate into the society, we cannot be just as good as white people. We have to be better than them. We have to come in with our own economy. We have to come in with our own businesses. We have to come in as equals, and if we offer them $10 for $10 of service, they’re going to respect us in a way that they don’t if we just ask them to give us $10.
And Booker T. Washington wasn’t all talk and no action, either. He raised some money. He started the Tuskegee Institute, and the Tuskegee Institute students had a higher graduation rate, higher test scores than the white American students did, and even more importantly, they had a higher legitimacy rate as well. Their families were stronger. They were better students and they were better people, because they were demanded to be better. They were not just equals, they were better than us, because they were demanded to be. They were held to that standard.
And when he started this, Tuskegee Airmen came out that group during World War II, a group of fighter pilots with substandard training and substandard equipment. Later in the war, they got P51s. They never lost a bomber, ever. That escort group never lost a bomber, unique in the history of World War II.
And what Booker T. Washington realized was if I have a racist pilot, white pilot flying a bomber, we can order him to respect us or we can have a black fighter pilot off his wing who’s going to risk his life or maybe get killed, so that he can go home to his family, and that’s going to earn us the respect that we would never have been able to demand.
Same thing happened in the 54th Massachusetts during the Civil War. An all-black regiment went and attacked Battery Wagner. The Union soldiers thought that these were sub-humans. They didn’t think they were sub-humans when that battle was over. They earned that respect. That was what Booker T. Washington promised black America.
Think about this for one second, if he had gotten his way, think about an America where black people are looked up to as the educated people, as the good people, the people with the strong families, as the intellectual, hardworking elite of America. That was the vision that Booker T. Washington had for America, and that was what he was achieving at the Tuskegee Institute.
And, no, no, we made the decision to go the easy route. We made the decision to go the entitlement route. We made the decision to go the racial-envy route and the rage route and the hostility route and the dependency route and all of that. It’s a catastrophe. It’s a catastrophe, and the only people that benefit are the Talented Tenth, guys like, you know, Reverend Wright and Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson and Barack Obama. It’s a catastrophe. It’s a catastrophe.
That concludes our little walk through -- little history of the progressive movement. I hope by now you might realize that these are not people -- it’s not like the Rotary Club and the Lion’s Club, you know. These people have an entire history predicated on murder. I’m not saying that Hillary Clinton wants to murder half of this country, but I am saying she wouldn’t mind if it were to happen. (Laughter.) Right? It’s power.
What does Hillary Clinton believe? I just heard the last sentence on Hillary Clinton, is she a true believer in Marxism or Alinsky-ism, no? She’s a true believer in Hillary Clinton-ism. That’s all -- That’s it. That’s all. Power. Power. Power. Power. Power.
So I hope this gives you some idea of the kind of people that we’re fighting against and why we need to fight them, and, furthermore, how we need to fight them. We can’t play nice with these people. We have to call them what they are. They’re murders and they’re control freaks.
Barack Obama never murdered anybody, but his philosophy did. His philosophy did. Barack Obama never could have afforded that jumbo jet, but his philosophy got it for him by splitting this country along the most sensitive, tender lines it has in order to get him political power.
Awful people. Awful. We can’t let them continue . We certainly can’t let them have another four years of this.
So thanks for coming to the Freedom Center, being a part of this. I’m very, very grateful to be here. (Applause.)
Questions, of course.
MALE SPEAKER: [Time] for a few questions.
BILL WHITTLE: Yes, sir.
Q: [Do you have this talk on video or -- “
BILL WHITTLE: We do now, apparently.
Q: Can we get it? How do we get it?
MALE SPEAKER: (Inaudible.)
BILL WHITTLE: Anybody else? Yes, sir.
Q: [I remember your speech when you apologized for Mitt Romney’s wealth, and I was wondering if you -- what your feeling is about Donald Trump’s wealth and how that’s] (inaudible).
BILL WHITTLE: Just to be crystal clear, I said that Romney lost the election because he apologized for his wealth. I thought the line -- I think the standard line in that speech was -- Mitt Romney shouldn’t have said, "Don’t criticize me for having $200 million. I have $250 million. I worked very hard for that $50 million." (Laughter.)
Donald Trump’s wealth is not a factor. I just think the fact that Donald Trump’s kind of an idiot is really rather, you know, where the problem lies. I’m not a fan of Donald Trump for the same reason I’m not a fan of Hillary Clinton. I don’t think Donald Trump is a conservative or a Republican. I think he’s a Trump-ian, and I think Clinton’s a Clinton-ian. And I really think that’s the only consistent thing you can find about these people is themselves. They don’t have a particular philosophy that causes them to win or lose.
Ted Cruz has done things that maybe I disagree with, but Ted Cruz does them for a consistent internal reason. I respect that. And I’ll tell you something else, I actually have much, much greater respect for Bernie Sanders than for Hillary Clinton. I think Bernie Sanders is a dangerous socialist and I’ve already made the case for how dangerous these people are. But at least Bernie Sanders says what he believes.
BILL WHITTLE: Hillary Clinton believes exactly -- she just won’t say it.
Q: Yes. Yes. (Applause.)
BILL WHITTLE: And, by the way, you know, I think we talked about fighting these people politically. I think the way to do it is just to call them out and make them -- put them on a wedge, right? Put them on a wedge.
Hillary Clinton will tell you, Barack Obama’s told you this all the time, "I’m not a socialist." If there was a press corps this would have happened a long time ago. But if I ever asked Barack Obama, Mr. President, would you describe yourself as socialist or jihadi? "No, of course not. No. What a ridiculous, right-wing, knuckle-dragging accusation."
I’m glad to hear it, Mr. President. We’re in full agreement on this. So I would like to just hear you now say for all of the American people that socialism is a great ill that must be eradicated for the future of this country, and also that Muslim extremism is the single greatest threat to peace in the world. Just say that with me right now, please.
BILL WHITTLE: Say it right now. Come on. Just say it. Because they’ll only go so far, you see. They can pull the wool over your eyes only so far, but they can’t actually say that because now their base is going to go, Oh, wait a minute. Are you selling us out? They’d still wink about it. Well, you’re just saying it for the rubes.
But make [him] say it. Are you really an anti-socialist, Mr. Obama? Yes. I hate socialism. Give me some examples why socialism is so awful. Of course, he’s a socialist. [You’ve made enough money. You didn’t build that.] Of course, he’s a socialist. Of course, he’s a Muslim sympathizer. Of course, he is. There’s no question he is. You know, just no question about it.
I mean, the idea of 70 people lined up on a beach in orange jumpsuits having their throats slit simultaneously, if I was president, that would not be happening. That’s what we have SEALS for. I’d have those guys come right out of the water, be like a science fiction movie. (Laughter.) Pop. Down they go. (Applause.) And then back into the water. (Applause.)
Anybody else? Yes, ma’am.
Q: (Inaudible) point of information [in that] in the State of Texas, the Republican Party was [founded] by 150 blacks and 20 whites.
BILL WHITTLE: Do you know --
Q: President Bush (inaudible).
BILL WHITTLE: Absolutely. Absolutely. Including Condoleezza Rice. And if these people actually lived up to the racial identities that they claim to, Condoleezza Rice would be president, now, right?
Not only is she a woman and not only is she black, but she is completely independent. She didn’t get there because she married a powerful politician or married money. She’s been on her own. She worked her tail off to reach the secretary of state of the United States of America.
She’s a record breaker in every way, one of the smartest women I’ve ever met or listened to, and one of the kindest, one of the most humble people I’ve ever met, genuine humility. That’s a sign of character. That’s a sign of suffering, actually. That’s where humility comes from is suffering.
And I’ll go even further, you know, I would rather see Jesse Jackson president than Barack Obama, because, at least, at least Jesse Jackson is, in fact, an authentic American black. He was in the south. He grew up in the south. He dealt with the racism down there.
Barack Obama cloaks himself in this kind of racial kind of thing, but Barack Obama was smoking doobies on the beach in Hawaii. There’s not a person in this room [who] wouldn’t like to have that life of his, you know? (Laughter.) I mean, seriously. For this guy to claim himself as a descendant of the Civil Rights Movement is just a joke, and we let him get away with it.
Well, as a representative of black -- What do you know about black America, Barack? You grew up in Indonesia, and then you came to the richest private school in America and hung out at the beach and you dribbled a basketball and you smoked joints your entire life. What do you know about the black experience in America? Nothing. You know nothing about it. Doors open for you as you’re crossing the street. You’ve never had a headwind in your life. Please. You’re a spoiled, pampered narcissistic nothing. You don’t get to suffer. I’ll listen to it from Jackson, but I won’t listen to it from you. (Applause.)
Anybody else? No?
Pleasure being here. Thanks. (Applause).