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If I were the Devil - from 1965

Discussion in 'American Politics' started by NightHawkeye, Mar 21, 2012.

  1. NightHawkeye

    NightHawkeye Work-in-progress Supporter

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    Transcript of Paul Harvey broadcast on April 3, 1965:
    If I were the Devil ... I mean, if I were the Prince of Darkness, I would of course, want to engulf the whole earth in darkness. I would have a third of its real estate and four-fifths of its population, but I would not be happy until I had seized the ripest apple on the tree, so I should set about however necessary to take over the United States. I would begin with a campaign of whispers. With the wisdom of a serpent, I would whisper to you as I whispered to Eve: “Do as you please.” “Do as you please.” To the young, I would whisper, “The Bible is a myth.” ... I would convince them that man created God instead of the other way around. I would confide that what is bad is good, and what is good is “square”. In the ears of the young marrieds, I would whisper that work is debasing, that cocktail parties are good for you. I would caution them not to be extreme in religion, in patriotism, in moral conduct. And the old, I would teach to pray. I would teach them to say after me: “Our Father, which art in Washington” . . .
    If I Were the Devil: Paul Harvey (Warning for a Nation) - YouTube
    If I were the devil, I’d educate authors in how to make lurid literature exciting so that anything else would appear dull an uninteresting. I’d threaten T.V. with dirtier movies and vice versa. And then, if I were the devil, I’d get organized. I’d infiltrate unions and urge more loafing and less work, because idle hands usually work for me. I’d peddle narcotics to whom I could. I’d sell alcohol to ladies and gentlemen of distinction. And I’d tranquilize the rest with pills. If I were the devil, I would encourage schools to refine young intellects but neglect to discipline emotions . . . let those run wild. I would designate an athiest to front for me before the highest courts in the land and I would get preachers to say “she’s right.” With flattery and promises of power, I could get the courts to rule what I construe as against God and in favor of pornography, and thus, I would evict God from the courthouse, and then from the school house, and then from the houses of Congress and then, in His own churches I would substitute psychology for religion, and I would deify science because that way men would become smart enough to create super weapons but not wise enough to control them.

    If I were Satan, I’d make the symbol of Easter an egg, and the symbol of Christmas, a bottle. If I were the devil, I would take from those who have and I would give to those who wanted, until I had killed the incentive of the ambitious. And then, my police state would force everybody back to work. Then, I could separate families, putting children in uniform, women in coal mines, and objectors in slave camps. In other words, if I were Satan, I’d just keep on doing what he’s doing.

    Paul Harvey, Good Day.
    Snopes validates the transcript, offers several bogus transcripts and provides lots of commentary; though their 1964 dating differs from the 1965 date attributed by Fox News and others: snopes.com: Paul Harvey 'If I Were the Devil'

    EDIT: The Snopes transcript is slightly different from the video. Other sites indicate that Paul Harvey broadcast variations of this message several times over the years.
     
    Last edited: Mar 21, 2012
  2. keith99

    keith99 Senior Member

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    If I were the adversary of the Christian God I'd encourage those like Paul Harvey who seem to think America is God's chosen people.

    Gott mit uns!
     
  3. rambot

    rambot Senior Member

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    Okay, well that's nice. It's not really all that hard to go find something that runs counter to this by someone who would get more of my respect than a radio journalist...maybe even someone who's done right for the world.
     
  4. athenken

    athenken Barbary pirates? Or are they?

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    Interesting. And nearly all of this has already come to pass.

    Paul Harvey, the Nostrodomus of the 20th century.
     
  5. Rion

    Rion Love the puppy; obey the puppy

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    Got called to a meeting, so you beat me to it. ;)
     
  6. NightHawkeye

    NightHawkeye Work-in-progress Supporter

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    What a jaded perspective, Rambot.

    Here's what some others thought of Paul Harvey: Paul Harvey - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Harvey was named Salesman of the Year, Commentator of the Year, Person of the Year, Father of the Year, and American of the Year. He was elected to the National Association of Broadcasters National Radio Hall of Fame and Oklahoma Hall of Fame, and appeared on the Gallup poll list of America's most admired men. In addition he received 11 Freedom Foundation Awards as well as the Horatio Alger Award. Paul Harvey was named to the DeMolay Hall of Fame, a Masonic youth organization, on June 25, 1993.

    In 2005, he was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the United States' most prestigious civilian award, by President George W. Bush.

    On May 18, 2007, he received an honorary degree from Washington University in St. Louis.
    What I never realized before is that Paul Harvey's short-lived replacement was none other than Mike Huckabee
    On March 4, Gil Gross was chosen to become the next host of News & Comment. New owners Citadel Broadcasting, who bought ABC Radio from Disney in 2008, chose Mike Huckabee instead but the show lasted only one week before it was taken off the air.
    I also never realized that ABC Radio had been divested by Disney. Makes sense though ...
     
  7. SmellsLikeCurlyFries

    SmellsLikeCurlyFries Social Capitalist

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    What is this, the new conservative "it" thing or something? The Tea Party page I follow on Facebook posted this too.
     
  8. craigerNY

    craigerNY I bring nothing to the table

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    If I were the devil I'd try to mince religion with something very dirty, something that would tarnish it for eternity, something that it could never come away clean from.........politics.

    Looks like the devil beat me to it.
     
  9. NightHawkeye

    NightHawkeye Work-in-progress Supporter

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    Well ... yeah. Interesting news travels like wildfire. ;)

    Fox, The Blaze, Snopes, Democratic Underground, Hoaxbusters, Free Republic, The Daily Paul, World News Daily, ...

    You know ... the usual right wing and corresponding rebuttal sites. None of the mainstream media sites though. Weird ...
     
  10. SmellsLikeCurlyFries

    SmellsLikeCurlyFries Social Capitalist

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    Ew. Who cares about them? :p
     
  11. NightHawkeye

    NightHawkeye Work-in-progress Supporter

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    That's why I threw in the Daily Paul for ya, CurlyFries. ;)
     
  12. SmellsLikeCurlyFries

    SmellsLikeCurlyFries Social Capitalist

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    Much appreciated ;)
     
  13. Maren

    Maren Veteran

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    It's not that interesting. Most of it was current events, at the time. To start with, and where it fails, is he is largely talking about Communism as being the devil -- directly referenced by "a third of its real estate and four-fifths of its population".

    Among the references we see the Hippie Movement, Peyton Place (lurid literature, TV and film), wanting to scrap the Hays Code (censorship in movies and TV to preserve morality), Pres. Johnson's Great Society, Madalyn Murray O'Hair. That is most of the main points.

    So it isn't prophetic. If anything, it is more a reminder of how the more things change, the more they remain the same.
     
    RedDead1981 likes this.
  14. athenken

    athenken Barbary pirates? Or are they?

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    Not really, considering at the time this country was going through another great upheaval. The Vietnam War and race equality. This dynamic change in our society is only overshadowed by the Civil War, since we became a nation.
     
  15. keith99

    keith99 Senior Member

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    Truly,

    There is nothing new under the sun.
     
  16. Maren

    Maren Veteran

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    I'm not sure what you mean by "not really". I'm not claiming there wasn't a dynamic change, rather that the change was already occurring and this was Paul Harvey's commentary from the center of that change.

    Beyond that, though, every generation seems to think there is some "great upheaval" going on. There are comments from adults almost every generation about how how much worse the youth are. That is why it resonates with so many today and why they claim it is prophetic.
     
  17. NightHawkeye

    NightHawkeye Work-in-progress Supporter

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    One could also say that Paul Harvey simply reiterated Biblical prophecy, Maren ...
    Rev 12:3 And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads. 4 And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and did cast them to the earth: and the dragon stood before the woman which was ready to be delivered, for to devour her child as soon as it was born.
    This is also the beast that was ... and is not ... and yet, is ...
    Rev 13:3 And I saw one of his heads as it were wounded to death; and his deadly wound was healed: and all the world wondered after the beast.
    Personally, I think that makes it all the more interesting ... ;)

    He was prophetic in the sense that he recognized the ramifications of all those activities. Many people at the time had no idea of the future ramifications which would result from the actions taken at that time.

    LOL ... in at least one sense Paul Harvey would agree with you, Maren.
    If I were Satan, I’d make the symbol of Easter an egg, and the symbol of Christmas, a bottle. If I were the devil, I would take from those who have and I would give to those who wanted, until I had killed the incentive of the ambitious. And then, my police state would force everybody back to work. Then, I could separate families, putting children in uniform, women in coal mines, and objectors in slave camps. In other words, if I were Satan, I’d just keep on doing what he’s doing.

    Paul Harvey, Good Day.
    But, like I said, as an astute observer Paul Harvey was able to see the longer term impacts resulting from the changes being made at the time. In that sense, he was well ahead of many voters, who even now seem to have difficulty either understanding or accepting that actions have consequences.
     
  18. keith99

    keith99 Senior Member

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    I really liked this miss.

    The egg is no more a symbol of Easter than it was in 1965 and as far as I can remember the bottle was never a symbol of Christmas or even New Years.

    The pagans won the war over Christmas and the symbol is a tree, Hail Odin!
     
  19. Maren

    Maren Veteran

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    And I'd say he believe he was seeing the implications already. Again, if you notice, the general idea (referenced in the first and last paragraph) is that he was actually talking about Communism. There was even a discussion a couple of years ago here on CF about how most of those items was part of the Communist plan.

    For example, Johnson's "Great Society" was the "impact" of Roosevelt's New Deal. Peyton Place (which included incest, abortion, adultery, lust and murder) was published in 1956, the movie was in 1957, and the TV soap opera started in 1964.

    Movie makers were already scrapping the Hays Code, which didn't just restrict language and nudity but even banned many subjects. In 1952 the Supreme Court ruled that movies were subject to the First Amendment, which weakened the ability to force movies to abide by the code. In 1964, the first film was released that showed nudity. So, as I say, he wasn't talking about what would happen but what he saw that had already happened.

    The reference to the atheist and the courts was a direct reference to Madalyn Murray O'Hair and here successful lawsuit to remove prayer in schools, which happened in 1963.

    Again, this was Harvey commenting on the impacts he already saw going on around him. And again, most of what you quote above is directly commenting on Communism: "If I were the devil, I would take from those who have and I would give to those who wanted, until I had killed the incentive of the ambitious. And then, my police state would force everybody back to work. Then, I could separate families, putting children in uniform, women in coal mines, and objectors in slave camps." Those are all direct references to what he saw occurring in Russia and China. And everything he talks about are part of what was believed to be the Communist's plan to take over America.

    So, actually, it wasn't prophetic at all. Again, it was just commentary on what he saw happening in 1965.
     
  20. SmellsLikeCurlyFries

    SmellsLikeCurlyFries Social Capitalist

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    Right...because that prophecy was totally talking about communism...
     
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