[Some time in 2006, I bought a book on closeout sale from a popular book service and read it at the time. It was an uncommonly thrilling read, and I intended to review it. However, life demands intervened, and I put it aside. This week, while digging into material about "social justice," I relocated the book and began rereading it. Within the first twenty-four pages, I reencountered a description that must be posted. It is too important for any American not to read. I can also state with full knowledge and conviction that there is much more where this came from.]
Some books seem to have their own timetable for getting out and being recognized for the value they are. Ayn Rand's Fountainhead, ignored by the literati, eventually became a best seller by word of mouth, not by hype, book tours, mainstream media, etc. America's 30 Year War by Balint Vazsonyi is one of those books that has not yet been appreciated as it ought to be. My post deals only with a small portion of this fascinating book, but that portion is profoundly important to every American today and tomorrow.
The author is a naturalized American. He was born in Hungary, lived under the Nazis and lived under the post World War II infiltration and finally invasion of Hungary. By profession, he is a concert pianist. He also has a brilliant mind and uses it beautifully. Since he came to us, to America, by choice, from the worst regimes that ever infested Europe, he has witnessed the terrible cultural changes in America. He has seen the spawn of the Greatest Generation become the Worst Generation, who have in turn wreaked havoc in American culture, almost without opposition. To follow are his observations of the change that he himself saw first-hand:
My first encounter with socialism occurred at the age of eight. In 1944, on a Sunday before dawn,m the armed forces of the Third Reich occupied Hungary. The Third Reich was ruled by the National Socialist German Workers' Party; thus, "my first socialism" happened to be national socialism.
By 1948, the Communist Party had assumed police authority over all economic activity, and began to classify people's political attitudes...The next year, in 1949, the communists seized complete control of the country, and declared Hungary's unconditional allegiance to the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. As the nazis before, they interned or executed the leadership of all other political organizations. [Editor's note: He started with the Communist Manifesto and studied communism intensely on his own.]
(The author describes the operations of the Communists and the tangles and jailings he and his family endured, including jailing for what today would be called "hate speech." Then, in 1956, he fled Hungary for America at age 20. He reflects on the world he left behind.)
Before, between the ages of eight and twenty, socialism's vocabulary (words, phrases, definitions) and socialism's repertory of tools (procedures, practices, mannerisms) had become etched on by brain. Party operatives spoke as if playing back a tape from a deck inside their skull, with the First Secretary changing the tape every time new directives came from Moscow. Every vile deed was done for the sake of "world peace." The source of all virtue was the Soviet Man; the source of all evil was the American Oppressor. Good people were progressive, bad people were reactionary...Those who misspoke had to engage in self-criticism, and go into sensitivity training. If your father owned a small sotre, you could do no good. If your father worked in a factory, you could do no evil...
On April 20, 1964, the day I became American, I gave special thanks because all of that seemed forever behind me...The years of unclouded joy were short. (Editor's emphasis)
During the late 1960s, I watched in despair as my brilliantly gifted piano students suddenly began to speak as if someone had replaced their brains with prerecorded tapes. The spoke in phrases--repeated mechanically--which were neither the product of, nor accessible to, intelligent consideration. At first, these tapes seemed to contain only a few slogans about "love and peace." Fruitful conversation became alarming when the "tapes" began to include words and phrases that had become familiar to me in Hungary during the nazi and Soviet occupations, and which contributed to the reasons for my decision to escape. Worse yet, the words and phrases were soon followed by practices of similar pedigree.
"Reactionary," "exploitation," "oppressor and oppressed," and "redistribution" were some of the words taken straight fromt the Marxist repertoire. The term "politically correct" first came to my attention through the writings of Anto Semionovich Makarenko, Lenin's expert on education. Adolf Hitler preferred the version "socially correct."
More than any single component, however, I was struck by the growing overall hostility toward long-standing American traditions and their English origins...Thus began my search which, in time, led to the discovery of their (nazi and communist) common philosophical roots.
For the past thirty years [Editor's note: This book was published in 1998], all aspects of our lives--and all of our institutions--have been moving in one direction: away from America's founding principles. Like a compass, these principles--foremost among them the rule of law, individual rights, guaranteed property, and a common American identity--have provided our bearings for two centuries. And every time we move away from America's founding principles, we move in the direction of the sole realistic alternative.
That alternative is one we call by pseudonyms because we are reluctant to confront its proper label: communism--not in the sense of Stalin's gulag or Mao's Cultural Revolution, but as a logical end state where the objective of socialism, "social justice," has been achieved. As such, it continues to attract many.
Here, I will stop. I do so with reluctance, however, because this book says so much, so well, to so many, who need it so badly. This author is like a modern day Alexis de Tocqueville. He came from Europe. He elected America, and he is watching the poison of Europe killing America. Indigenous Americans seem deaf, dumb, and blind to what is going on around them. This man gives us phenomenally powerful intellectual ammunition to understand it and end it, once and for all.