In previous blog essays I discussed the prevailing trends of American society and how recovery of the America our fathers and forefathers knew is now impossible. In the months leading up to the November 2016 election, I blogged that even if Republican candidate Donald Trump won the election, his victory would not save the country. Nor would it return America to a more civilised state. Nor would it guarantee our religious liberty for very long. I said the best case scenario is that Donald Trump might be able to postpone the inevitable anti-Christian persecution that is coming to America, and possibly lessen its severity. We were fortunate. Donald Trump won, and while it is obvious now that he cannot stop the impending persecution to come, he does stand a good chance at delaying its coming and lessening its severity.
His election has forced the modern Left to show its ugly fangs. Since November of 2016 we have witnessed nothing but riot after riot, sponsored by Leftist groups and individuals, many of whom sponsored Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign and the Democratic Party. These riots appear to only be getting worse, and in response, we are seeing counter-riots by racist groups claiming to represent the Right. The entire nation is now embroiled in what can only be called a soft civil war, between the Alt-Left and the Alt-Right, or the NeoMarxists versus the NeoNazis. Thankfully, most of the nation's conservatives have disavowed the NeoNazis, but we haven't yet seen similar distancing between the nation's liberals and NeoMarxists. This is disturbing, and I believe it is an omen of things to come. As I wrote almost a year ago, prepare for persecution. It is most certainly coming to America. Trump may postpone it and reduce its severity, if he is successful, but it will still come. He can't stop it. Nobody can.
In previous essays I advocated a return to a simpler way of engaging society, more along the lines of The Benedict Option, and I stand by that. Our primary focus must be along the lines of rebuilding our families, our parishes and our immediate communities from the devastation that Liberal Modernism has wrought. Again, I stand by that, and I encourage all of my readers to abandon the prevailing "culture wars" for a simpler method of Christian life, reaching out to our families and neighbours for Christ instead.
Of course there is the political paradigm too. People will be curious where we stand on various political issues, parties and candidates. Furthermore, for a people engaged in the culture wars for so long, it will be difficult to pull away and just go "cold turkey" as they say. Our minds are trained to think in political ways, and so there needs to be some kind of working ideology by which Catholic Christians (and other Christians) can define ourselves. It is one thing to say the Church defines our politics, and this is well and good. However, the Church only defines principles upon which to base our political views, and as we have seen in recent decades, the hierarchy of the Church has done a fairly poor job enforcing her own principles upon Catholics who participate in the political process. One only need cite the over-abundance of Pro-Abortion and Pro-War "Catholic" politicians in the American political landscape as an example, and the case is closed.
Catholics (especially faithful Catholics) don't really have a political ideology to stand behind in American politics. Believe it or not, Catholicism is basically unrepresented in American politics, and I mean that quite literally. Faithful Catholics have NO REPRESENTATION in American politics at all. We are simply an appendage of somebody else's political paradigm, a prize to be won, a so-called "voting block" to be sought after, but nobody really represents us. The Democrats don't represent us. The Republicans don't represent us. Both parties rather represent their own vision of Modernism, which really isn't a whole lot different than the other.
Within the Republican Party, and somewhat independent of it, there exists what is commonly called the "Conservative Movement," which is really just an alliance between Libertarians and Pro-Lifers. That's about it. If you wanted to define the "Conservative Movement" in a nutshell, this is what you would get. The word "conservatism" doesn't mean a whole lot unless you define specifically what it is you're trying to conserve. In America, the Neoconservative movement defines itself as the preservation of some generalised Christian morals combined with a Libertarian view of economics and government intervention. In essence, it's an attempt to go back to the earlier days of the Enlightenment, before the Marxist revolutions of the 20th century. What today's "conservatives" fail to see is that the very 18th and 19th-century Enlightenment ideals they want to return to, are in fact the very conditions that spawned the Marxist revolutions of the 20th-century. While sworn enemies of Libertarians, Marxists actually need Libertarianism to grow and thrive. They are in fact a two-headed monster that both hate and need each other. They are born of the Enlightenment itself, and are in fact the twin offspring of it. Some Catholics have made the horrible mistake of embracing one or the other.
What is needed, in keeping with The Benedict Option I recommended earlier, is to turn deep into our history and tradition as Catholic Christians, to discover the form of polity that is needed in our modern world. It must be something that completely counters the Enlightenment in total. Pope Leo XIII gave us a start with his encyclical Rerum Novarum in 1891, which challenged the economic and political paradigms of both capitalism and socialism. This was followed by Pope Pius XI's landmark encyclical, Quadragesimo Anno in 1931, written in the depths of the Great Depression, expanding on Leo XIII's masterpiece. From these came the ideals of distributism (a modern form of Medieval economics) initially pushed by G.K. Chesterton and Hilaire Belloc. Alongside this movement came the call for a return to Catholic monarchy, especially in Europe, after witnessing the horrors of two world wars. Having witnessed the failures of Modernism, both inside the Church and outside of it, many Catholic youth are now calling for a return to traditional thought on government, economics and societal norms. When I say "traditional" here, I don't mean the traditional Enlightenment ideals posited by the Republicans, Libertarians and Conservatives. Rather, I mean "traditional" as in the sense of historic Christendom.
Obviously such a movement, as radical in nature as this is, cannot find its footing in contemporary Left versus Right politics we see in America's current political paradigm. Neither the Right nor the Left have the language to articulate it. So they most certainly cannot represent it. This is outside of their area of competence, and for that reason, we must seek to build something entirely new from the ground up. This begins primarily with education and networking.
The Counter-Revolution is a social-political-economic-spiritual movement based entirely on the ideals of Catholic monarchy, integralism, distributism, and corporatism. This is done by promoting the interior life first, by calling upon its members to recognise the Social Kingship of Christ through regular participation in the sacraments and prayer. Only by building up the interior life of the family and parishes can we begin to move forward on a social, economic and political level. The much-needed transformation of America and Europe must come from within. It cannot happen any other way. Therefore, the formation of a new political party, in the traditionally understood sense, cannot work and will only set such a movement up for failure. Before candidates can be run for political office, the general population must receive education and formation. That is what The Counter-Revolution aims to do.
The Counter-Revolution (TCR), having started only recently, already has hundreds of registered members, many of whom are Catholic clergy and seminarians, along with Catholic laypeople. While the movement is primarily Catholic, it is not exclusively so. It also has some Eastern Orthodox and Anglican members. The Counter-Revolution (TCR) already has the quiet support of a handful of bishops in the United States. I will allow them to reveal themselves in due time, at their own discretion, and out of courtesy and respect I will not reveal their names here. Membership in The Counter-Revolution (TCR) is free, while donations are always appreciated. The goal of the movement is to promote the interior life of faith and family FIRST, then promote authentic Catholic social teaching and philosophy through charity work, spreading of literature, lectures, and peaceful marches. You can learn more about The Counter-Revolution (TCR) by visiting their website here. After reviewing the principles of what they stand for, membership can be obtained easily and without cost by simply filling out their unobtrusive application form. The Counter-Revolution (TCR) only asks for pertinent information, is not interested in your home address, and will not sell your information to other parties.
Members of The Counter-Revolution (TCR) and related sympathisers, can identify each other through various symbols and banners. The Counter-Revolution (TCR) has it's own flag and bumper-stickers available at a reasonable price for purchase on their website...
In addition, the flag of the old Holy Roman Empire serves as a sign of this movement...
Likewise the flag and symbol of St. Joan of Arc serves as a sign of this movement too...
Our call as Catholics in this new political paradigm we're living in, is to completely remove ourselves from all political parties. We should no longer be the stooges of post-Enlightenment politics. Catholics should not be Democrats, nor should we be Republicans. We should extradite ourselves from other political movements as well, especially if they're not based on strictly Catholic ideals. That doesn't mean we shouldn't vote. On the contrary, we should vote, of course, but in doing so we should vote the candidates of our choice as free agents, no longer tied to any of the modern political parties or movements that are almost all opposed to Catholic teaching in some way or another.
Likewise, I think it would be wise for Catholics to stop talking to pollsters. It's better to keep our voting patterns hidden from the general public. This is not only to avoid confusion for our fellow Catholics, but also in the interest of our own self-protection. The recent voting patterns of Catholics, if known by the pollsters, will inevitably be used as fodder against the Catholic Church in the coming environment of religious persecution. What I'm saying here is this. The NeoMarxists and NeoNazis are watching us. Granted the NeoNazis are not as big of a threat anymore, but the NeoMarxists are a growing and dangerous threat to our safety and well being. It's better for all Catholics if our voting patterns are left a mystery, unknown to the general public. It's better if they have to guess how we voted, than to know exactly how we did, based on polling. So STOP talking to pollsters. When they call, hang up the phone without answering their questions. When they stop you on the street with their clipboards and questions, wave your hand and say "no thank you." Then move along. Remember, you're doing this for the safety of your brothers and sisters in the Church. There is no reason why the general public needs to know who we voted for in primary and general elections. Remember, the American ballot is kept secret for a reason. If the government deems our voting privacy that important, so should we.
We are entering into uncharted waters in the history of American politics. While President Donald Trump can be useful in slowing and mitigating the coming persecution, he cannot stop it. Furthermore, any talk of Trump being a "modern Constantine" who can somehow turn back the clock and rebuild America's moral fabric, is unrealistic. I think Rod Dreher said it best in his outstanding book, The Benedict Option:
Though Donald Trump won the presidency in part with the strong support of Catholics and Evangelicals, the idea that the robustly vulgar, fiercely combative, and morally compromised as Trump will be an avatar for the restoration of Christian morality and social unity is beyond delusional. He is not a solution to America’s cultural decline, but a symptom of it.We Catholics need to look at this presidency realistically. The only reason why Donald Trump won the primaries was because previous presidents had put this country into such a tailspin that Trump was the only one accurately calling out the problems. The only reason why Trump won the general election is because the Democrats put up such a horrible alternative. That's the reality of what is going on here. I do wish him the best in the presidency (seriously I do). However, I'm also painfully realist about all this. He can't save America. No president can. Furthermore, he is just a president, not a king. So he can't get everything he wants. The only thing that can save the United States of America is a return of the people to Christian morality, and as we've seen, that won't happen without persecution of Christians first. Stay firm my friends, it's coming. But if we remain strong in our faith, extradite ourselves from the culture wars, focus on our faith, family and Church, we can (and we will) not only endure this, but we shall prevail. When we come out on the other side, the world will look to us to rebuild our society and culture. The Counter-Revolution (TCR) aims to help ready us for that day. I wholeheartedly endorse this movement. That's why I am a registered member. Join today!
Shane Schaetzel is an author of Catholic books and a columnist for Christian print magazines and online publications. He is a freelance writer and the creator of 'CatholicInTheOzarks.com.' Your support is what makes essays like this possible. This essay and all of Shane's Internet resources come to you (ad-free) thanks to the generosity of benefactors. Please consider becoming a benefactor.
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