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Friday, April 30, 2010

Chapter Thirteen Continued: The Green Shirts

A CULTURE OF DEFIANCE: History of the Reform-Conservative Party of Canada

The Green Shirts were created on August 18, 1920, By John Hargrave, as the Kindred of the Kibbo Kift. Hargrave had been with the boy scouts, but was excommunicated, so he started his own group, that included young women and men.

They would later become more political when they adopted the Social Credit elements of Major Douglas. Unlike similar groups at the time, they did not appear to have the fascist elements.

In fact the author George Orwell who had initially supported Social Credit but packed off when he saw the rampant anti-Semitism, linked the Green shirts with other fascist movements, and was eventually forced to apologize to John Hargrave.

When William Aberhart's Social Credit Party won the election in 1935, the Green Shirts marched in London in celebration. Hargrave would also make a trip to Alberta to help him get established.

The purpose of the Kibbo Kift Kindred was to train a body of men and women who, having drawn apart from the mass, would fit themselves to act as a catalyst on a corrupt and directionless society and lead it back to health and wealth. The movement was firmly rooted in English tradition and indeed might rightly be described as the only genuine English national movement of modern times. (1)

Like Aberhart he was making monetary reform a Christian mission:

On January 3, 1931, Hargrave spoke at the Annual Kinfest, showing how it was the duty of the Kibbo Kift to break the power of the money-mongers. Parliament was useless, and the people themselves lacking hope and courage; but they would follow the Kin if the Kindred could show "that absolute, that religious, that military devotion to duty without which no great cause was ever brought to a successful issue." (1)

They held hunger marches, demonstrations and mass meetings, often inviting violent confrontation. I always thought of them as more of a cult but they are still active today.

Chapter Thirteen Continued: The Zionist Youth Movement


1. A History of the Kibbo Kift, by Professor LP Elwell-Sutton, Chief Executive Officer, Kibbo Kift Foundation

Chapter Twelve Continued: The Aftermath of Defeat

A CULTURE OF DEFIANCE: History of the Reform-Conservative Party of Canada

From the Heidelberger Platz onward, the streets were black with people. A great excitement lay upon them. The tension grew. People thought they heard distant drum-beats. A wave of shouts rolled along the streets. The stewards formed a chain to hold back the mass of people. And now the trumpets were indeed approaching.

And then came the sight that caused many in the crowd to weep. Men as well as women, moved by a feeling of humanity's common fate, remembering the long war and all the dead. Did the people see the troops? They were looking at the long war, at victories and at the defeats. Before them a piece of their own life was marching past, with wagons and horses, machine-guns and cannons. (1)

The joy at seeing the troops return from war in Germany was bittersweet, beause unlike the allied forces who would at least be going home victorious, Germany had been defeated. The Empire had lost more than two million to battle and disease, with another four million injured.

And they now had to deal with the humiliation of the victors claiming the spoils, not only in forced reparations but in the de-militarization of the country, as foreign soldiers now sought out and confiscated most of the means for the country to defend itself.

Armament factories were closed, throwing people out of work and many of the returning soldiers were forced to go on relief.

And as despair turned to anger, they began looking for someone to blame. In the beer halls talk turned to the "enemy within" and "being stabbed in the back", and a new enemy of "traitors" emerged. And to fight the traitors they began to stockpile weapons, "rescued" before the allied victors could take them and hidden in safe spots.

The struggle was nourished on a wild hatred from man to man.

No quarter was given, no prisoners taken. From a dark thicket in the Black Forest, Erzberger, the minister who induced Germany to sign the Treaty of Versailles, was shot. One night a few young men swore a mortal oath over their wine and beer; next morning, feverish and overwrought, they drove out in a car, overtook another car, and shot Minister Rathenau with an automatic. Deputy Gareis planned to attack the army of secret murderers in the Bavarian parliament; the night before the session he came home late. As he was opening the door, two shots rang out in the darkness. Gareis was dead, his murderers were never found.

Men vanished without trace; how many corpses the woods concealed can only be guessed; a woman was found dead at the foot of a tree, over her head a note was pinned with the words: 'Lousy bitch, you've betrayed the fatherland. So you are judged by the Black Hand.' One Pohner was president of the Munich police, a brilliant official, an extraordinary jurist; later he became a judge of the highest court in Bavaria. Someone said to him that beyond a doubt there were organizations of murderers at large. With an icy glance through his pince-nez, Pohner, the judge, replied: 'Yes, but too few!' (2)

This was the new Germany and this was the Germany where Adolfus Hitler, grandson of an unwed peasant girl, would find his true calling.


1. Germany After the First World War, By: Richard Bessel, Clarendon Press Oxford, 1993, ISBN: 0-19-821938-5

2. Der Fhehrer, Hitler's Rise to Power, By: Konrad Heiden, Houghton Mifflin Company, 1944, Pg. 24

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Chapter Eleven Continued: The German Revolution

A CULTURE OF DEFIANCE: History of the Reform-Conservative Party of Canada

The German Revolution began with the Wilhelmshaven Mutiny when a group of sailors refused orders to continue fighting, when the war was already clearly lost.

They felt that they would be risking their lives for nothing.

This mutiny led to further protest against the war and anger at the Kaiser for allowing it to go on as long as he had.
“It is often said that a true revolution in Germany in 1918 never took place. All that really happened was a breakdown. It was only the temporary weakness of the police and army in the moment of military defeat which let a mutiny of sailors appear as a revolution.

At first sight, one can see how wrong and blind this is comparing 1918 with 1945. In 1945 there really was a breakdown. Certainly a mutiny of sailors started the revolution in 1918 but it was only a start. What made it extraordinary is that a mere sailors' mutiny triggered an earthquake which shook all of Germany; that the whole home army, the whole urban workforce and in Bavaria a part of the rural population rose up in revolt. This revolt was not just a mutiny anymore, it was a true revolution ... As in any revolution, the old order was replaced by the beginnings of a new one. It was not only destructive but also creative. ... (1)

The anger spread across the country and resulted in the abdication of Kaiser Wilhelm II and the emergence of the Weimar Republic. Given the political climate, Germany officially surrendered and the Treaty of Versailles put an end to the war.

But the arbitrary nature of the treaty, was a devastating blow to the country and would become a rallying cry for the future Nazi Party. Germany under the treaty had to take sole responsibility for the war, and make reparations to other countries at a time when they were already heavily in debt.

It rendered them almost impotent and when the horrors of war faded, they were replaced with the horrors of that treaty.

The Weimar Republic was doomed to fail.

Chapter Twelve: The Aftermath of War


1. Der Verrat, By: Sebastian Haffner, Berlin, 2000, ISBN 3-930278-00-6

Chapter Eleven: Mutinies and Revolutions

A CULTURE OF DEFIANCE: History of the Reform-Conservative Party of Canada

Russia in the early 19th century was a place of much turmoil. Czar Nicholas II, though a good family man, was an incompetent leader, and when war broke out he went to play soldier instead of addressing matters at home.

And while Russia was at war, there was an internal war taking place on many fronts. The fraudulent Protocols of Zion, had resulted in pogroms, as the Jewish people were now thought to be behind a conspiracy to take over the world. A mass exodus took place, and for those who chose to stay, anti-Semitism was rampant and often violent.

Vladimir Lenin opposed the Imperialistic war, and instead was promoting a class war. While practising law, he worked on mostly land-ownership cases, where he gained insight to the Russian peasants' socio-economic condition. As a result he developed a political system he called Leninism, which was described as a pragmatic Marxism and often referred to as Lenin-Marxism.
Vladimir was in Switzerland at the time of the February Revolution that saw the Czar Nicholas II deposed, but with the help of the Germans, he was able to get safely back to Russia to join in the powder keg of revolt.

With the end of the Romanov dynasty an alliance between liberals and socialists formed a provisional government, committed to political reform, by creating a democratically-elected executive and assembly.

However, this new government failed, in part because they agreed to continue their participation in the Great War, and the riots continued, finally culminating in the October Revolution that saw the Bolshevik government under Lenin gain power, and the country was thrown into civil war.

On August 30, 1918 the head of the Petrograd secret police was assassinated, and a would be assassin tried and failed to take out Lenin. In retaliation many members of the royal family and those loyal to the White Army, a counter-revolutionary force, were rounded up and arrested.

On September 6, 1918, 25 armed men entered the home of Count Pavel Nikolayevich Ignatiev and his wife Princess Natalya Meshcherskaya. Pavel was arrested and held with counter-revolutionary prisoners, all slated for execution.

He had been the education minister at the Imperial Court, but was a Ukranian farmer of some means. Against the protests of her family and friends, Natalyan followed her husband demanding his release. But it wasn't until a geography teacher heard that Pavel had been arrested and was being held that his luck changed.

The teacher, remembering that Pavel had been instrumental in improving the educational system in the country, organized a student protest and as a result the ailing Pavel was allowed to return to his family.

However, they were constantly tormented. Their home was looted seventeen times, the final government sanctioned robbery netting what was left in their children's dresser drawers.

Finally forced to flee*, they eventually settled in Upper Melbourne, Quebec, where Pavel would return to his first love; farming.

One of his five sons George, would grow up to become a long serving Russian-Canadian diplomat and personal assistant to the Canadian High Commissioner in London, Vincent Massey. He would marry Massey's niece, Alison Grant, the granddaughter of the famous George Munro Grant, who played an integral role in Confederation.

George and Alison's eldest son Michael Ignatieff is now leader of the Liberal Party of Canada, following a long tradition of political involvement.

Pavel and Natalyan are better known as Paul and Natasia Ignatieff. She died in 1944 and the New York Times wrote of her death in an article entitled 'Princess Ignatieff'. Paul died in 1945.

Chapter Eleven Continued: The German Revolution


* Two brothers Terentiy and Lukyanov also fled from the Ukraine during the Russian Revolution, settling in Chicago. Terentiy Lavrentievich's wife Anna and son Zinoviy, had fled with him, and eventually they made their way to Brantford Ontario, where four more children would be born: Fedor, Vasiliy, Ekaterina, and Olga.

About 1930 conditions in their homeland had improved and Anna wanted to return, but Terentiy preferred to stay in Canada, so the family separated. He would then marry a Polish girl, Mary of Pidhaytsi, Ukraine, and they would have a son named Walter who would eventually have a son named Wayne, who would grow up to be the greatest hockey player that ever lived.

Terentiy Lavrentievich Gretzky, is better known as Tony Gretzky.


The Russian Album, By: Michael Ignatieff, Penguin Books, 1987, ISBN: 978-0-14-317165-2, Pg. 153-162

Chapter Ten Continued: A Reluctant Soldier

A CULTURE OF DEFIANCE: History of the Reform-Conservative Party of Canada

When war was declared in Germany, the Jewish population was just as eager to join in the fight, and despite their treatment, good or bad, they engaged in public displays of patriotism.

When the Kaiser called for a national day of prayer, they flocked to the synagogues to pray for the success of the fatherland.

100,000 German Jews fought for their country, because they were German first. In the same way that First Nations and Metis joined the fight on the Canadian side.

It was their country too.

Of course that doesn't mean that everyone was eager, including a young man who had just finished his studies at Marburg and was drafted into service. (1)

When Leo Strauss got the call he faked appendicitis, but when the doctor examined him, and found him to be healthy, he became a soldier on July 5, 1917, and was sent to Belgium as an interpreter, where he would remain until December of the following year.

He seems to have been rather ambivalent about this war. Adolf Hitler who though impacted by the loss of so many of his comrades, never lost his fervour, and was disappointed that Germany had surrendered. Friedrich Von Hayek chose his career because of it: "The decisive influence was really World War I. It's bound to draw your attention to the problems of political organization." (2)

I think that for Strauss, it was because he was an intellectual, and would have been opposed to intellectuals going to war. Or maybe he saw it as an intrusion. But he didn't on the surface oppose war.

In fact during the Cuban Missile Crisis, he supported an invasion even if it meant a nuclear attack:

I believe that the following points have not been made, or at least have not been made with sufficient audibility:… To speak in the only language which Khrushchev understands, Cuba is our Hungary; just as we did not make the slightest move when he solved the problem in his back yard, Hungary, he cannot, and will not make the slightest move if and when we take care of the problem in our back yard, Cuba. (3)

However, while he is being blamed by many for the War in Iraq, mainly because people like Paul Wolfovitz and William Kristol are Straussians, I don't think he would have felt that the weapons of mass destruction hoax would have been a noble lie.

Leo Strauss can't really be blamed for people twisting his philosophy, though they certainly have.

Chapter Eleven: Mutinies and Revolutions


1. Leo Strauss and the Politics of Exile, the making of a Political Philosopher, By: Eugene R. Sheppard, Brandeis University Press, 2006, ISBN: 978-154865-600-5, Pg. 14

2. Friedrich Hayek, By Alan Ebenstein, Palgrave, 2001, ISBN: 0-312-23344-2

3. Leo Strauss and the Iraq War, By Scott Horton, Harper's Magazine, June 3, 2009

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Chapter Eight: Adolf of Braunau am Inn

A CULTURE OF DEFIANCE: History of the Reform-Conservative Party of Canada

Adolfus Hitler was born on April 20, 1889, at half-past six in the evening, at the Hotel zum Pommer* in Braunau am Inn, the second child of Klara Polzl and the fifth for Alois Hitler. He was baptized two days later, at three in the afternoon. His godparents were a couple by the name of Prinz from the Lowengasse in Vienna.

It's important to trace Adolf's life from his humble beginnings, because he was not born into greatness. He was an ordinary man with perhaps a little less than ordinary roots. The man he would become, is the embodiment of a horrible time in history, that I believe would have taken place with or without him.

The people behind his rise to fame were just that powerful.

By identifying the Holocaust with his name alone, we risk the same thing happening again, because we may mistakenly believe that once he was gone, the hatred was buried with him.

Adolf Hitler was a narcissist, possibly the result of his insecurities, and the people who propelled him to power, fueled his over inflated ego and exploited his mental instability.

The end result was the creation of a monster.

Growing Up

In 1894, Alois retired on a pension and the family moved to Linz, the capital of Upper Austria. He bought and sold farm land before finally settling in the suburb of Leonding.

On April 2, 1895, the six-year-old Aldofus Hitler entered the public school in the village of Fischlham; and two years later he was sent to the cloister school at Lambach, and finally a public school in Leonding. His report cards from these years show that he earned excellent marks, with exceptionals in singing, drawing, and gymnastics.

But despite good grades, he was described by teachers, fellow pupils, and neighbors as a rough-neck, a loud-mouthed ring leader in children's games, who often brought knives and axes to school.

His father had become increasingly violent, and he beat Adolf on a regular basis. His mother would console him, and he admitted later that he could manipulate her. Not that the thrashings weren't real. When he was 10, his father beat him so bad that he was in a coma for three days, not expected to live.

According to Adolf, to punish his father he became frivolous and lazy. His grades certainly reflected this new attitude, because in 1900, he failed his first year of secondary school.

He was also becoming political, getting caught up in the popular movements of the day. An embittered rebellion against the authority of Church and State was simmering among the intellectuals of Austria, particularly in the country sections outside Vienna. With battle cries of Home to the Reich and Away from Rome; change was in the air.

Georg Ritter von Schonerer, his father's hero was once more in the limelight, championing these causes and in 1901, 21 members of his party gained seats in the Parliament.

Like his father, Adolf became an admirer of Schonerer, and it is said that when he was 14, he actually spit out the communion host at church, in support of his movement for the conversion of all Roman Catholic German speakers of Austria to Lutheran Protestantism.

His father remained a vocal supporter of pan-Germanism, and often engaged in political debates. But his health was failing and he had developed a chronic cough, often spitting up blood. On the morning of January 3, 1903, shortly before ten o'clock, Alois Hitler collapsed in the street. A friend found him and brought him to a near-by inn, but he never recovered. The death records indicate: 'Died suddenly of pulmonary hemorrhage'.

Adolf would often blame himself, because they had constantly battled over his refusal to become a civil servant. He wanted to be an architect or an artist.

The Rest of the Family

Adolfus would have four brothers and sisters, but only one, Paula, survived to adulthood. Brother Gustav, born in 1885, died in 1887; Ida, born in 1856, died in 1888; Edmund, born in 1894, died in 1900.

Paula, born in 1896, learned applied art, and later led a modest life in Vienna. She never married and when Adolf rose to power, he asked her to change her name after she lost a job with a Vienna insurance company, because of it. From then on she became Paula Wolf.

Perhaps she understood better than most people who her brother really was. She once said "Although he had captured the public, who believed him their protector and friend, I knew what he wanted and I was worried not only for his physical safety but also about his sanity."

Adolf also had two half-siblings from his father's relationship with Franziska Matzelsberger. Angela, born in 1883, later married an official by the name of Raubal. After his death she was found living in Vienna as a cook and housekeeper, and for a time worked in a Jewish charity kitchen.

His half-brother, Alois Matzelsberger, born in 1882, was later later legitimized as Alois Hitler. He was in and out of trouble, and arrested several times for theft and later imprisoned for bigamy. He spent some time in England, married and had a family, but would later desert them.

In the 1930s, he opened an inn that was frequented by the National Socialists, in one of the busiest squares in Berlin, and it became quite fashionable. Following the war Alois was briefly involved with a right-wing political party, and in the 1950s he made money signing photographs of his brother and selling them to tourists. He died on May 20, 1956 in Hamburg.

Chapter Eight Continued: Vienna Days


*In 1989 the new mayor Gerhard Skiba took the initiative and placed a memorial stone commemorating the victims of World War II in front of the building in which Hitler was born. The stone is made of granite from the Mauthausen concentration camp. It states: Für Frieden, Freiheit und Demokratie. Nie wieder Faschismus. Millionen Tote mahnen, or "For peace, freedom and democracy, never again Fascism, millions of dead warn (us)." It is often vandalized by members of neo-Nazi groups.


Der Fhehrer, Hitler's Rise to Power, By: Konrad Heiden, Houghton Mifflin Company, 1944, Pg. 44-46

Chapter Seven Continued: Alois and Klara

A CULTURE OF DEFIANCE: History of the Reform-Conservative Party of Canada

If the story is true that Alois Schicklgruber had vowed not to return to Spittal until he had made something of himself, apparently this metamorphosis took place by 1876, because it was then that he was reunited with his family.

His uncle Johann von Nepornuk Hiitler was still alive, and now that Alois, while not exactly Bourgeoisie, was a gentleman, in the loose sense that he had money, courtesy of his wife, Anna Glasl-Horer; the matter of paternity had to be settled.

This was also of interest to others since he had set his eyes on his uncle's sixteen year old granddaughter, Klara Polzl. His own wife was ill and not expected to last long, suffering from the advanced stages of tuberculosis, so it was his desire to bring Klara back with him to Braunau am Inn, where she would keep house until his wife succumbed to her illness, and then she would keep the house, so to speak.

Alois would tell a friend later that the reason for the settlement of paternity then was due to the fact that his uncle wanted to name him in his will, but needed something official before he was prepared to do so.

As a result, an elderly gentleman, appeared before the notary in the city of Weitra. At the age of eighty-four, Georg Hiedler now declared, in the presence of three witnesses by the name of Rameder, Breiteneder, and Pautsch, that he was the father of the illegitimate child, Alois Schicklgruber, born on June 7, 1837. He stated that he had meant to make things right when he married the lad's mother, but forgot.

The story was obviously reasonable, and the legal document bearing his signature, was forwarded to Spittal, and on June 6, 1876, one day before his 40th birthday, Alois was legally adopted, after years of being called a bastard.

There was now just the matter of the records, and on November 23, 1876, he showed up with several members of his family, and convinced the parish priest, Father Josef Zahnschirm, to take care of it. So the priest simply put a line through the 'illegitimate' and wrote in his father's name.

And that is how Alois Schicklgruber became Alois Hittler/Hiitler/Hiedler, though his son Adolf would simply be given the surname Hitler. Probably a good thing because 'Heil Schicklgruber' doesn't exactly roll off the tongue.

Klara Polzl-Hitler

Klara Polzl was born in 1860, the daughter of farmer Johann Polzl of Spittal, and Johanna Hiedler, daughter of Alois' adopted uncle. The Polz family lived on the neighbouring farm.

Her grandparents were Martin Hiedler and Maria Göschl of Walterschlag. The family had lived on this same homestead for four generations, so her lineage was well established.

When in 1876, Alois Hitler suggested that she become his ward, with the promise that once his wife was deceased he would marry the young lass, she agreed to the arrangement and travelled with her intended to his home in Braunau am Inn; where he was a customs official.

However, Alois' wife lived longer than expected and he soon grew restless, so began a relationship with a young hotel cook by the name of Franziska Matzelsberger. When the affair was discovered, his wife obtained a separation in accordance with the Austrian bed-and- board' law, and moved into a dwelling of her own.

The twenty-year-old Klara then packed up her things and moved to Vienna, where she secured a position as a maid, while Alois set up housekeeping with the pregnant Franziska.

Their first child Alois Jr. was born out of wedlock and when his first wife died, he married the boy's mother. A few weeks after the wedding, another child was born to the couple; a daughter they named Angela.

But in 1884, his second wife also died of tuberculosis, and Alois left with two small children, looked up his old flame Klara, brought her back from Vienna and they were married on January 7, 1885. Because of the family connection, they had to acquire a special dispensation from the church, though I don't believe they were biological kin.

But this couple would live on in posterity, because of an infamous son, by the name of Adolf Hitler.

Chapter Eight: Adolf of Braunau am Inn


Der Fhehrer, Hitler's Rise to Power, By: Konrad Heiden, Houghton Mifflin Company, 1944, Pg. 38-43

Chapter Seven Continued: Alois Schicklgruber-Hiedler

A CULTURE OF DEFIANCE: History of the Reform-Conservative Party of Canada

Alois Schicklgruber was born on June 7, 1837, in Strones, now part of North West Austria, to Maria Ann, a peasant woman of 42. His father was unknown, though he would later adopt the surname of his step-father, Georg Hiedler, then being written as Hittler and Hiitler.

I don't know if anyone has ever considered the possibility that Maria was impregnated by her father. Her mother had died when she was 26, and relationships like this would not be uncommon, especially in remote rural areas where human contact was limited.

It must have been an issue then, because the Austrian Sigmund Freud, spoke often of it and even published an essay: Totem and Tabu, dealing with incest.

Is this why she refused to name the father? I think it's a definite possibility, and certainly more likely to have been him than either of the Hiedler brothers.

Was it Maria's father who was the brute, a trait passed on to Alois? Is this why he was sent to the safety of an uncle, when Maria was dying? Her father outlived her by a few months.

I suppose it will always remain a mystery, but the fact is that Maria did marry Johann Georg Hiedler when Alois was five, and some time after, when she was ill, Alois was sent to live with his uncle, Johann Nepomuk Hiedler, in the village of Spittal. The name of this uncle is written as Johann von Nepomuk Hiitler, and since Johann von Nepomuk is the national saint of the Czech people; he may have been of that origin. (1)

Spittal was a market town, that had been the scene of several peasant uprisings. There is also some speculation that the postage stamp was invented there, though it is only one of several possibilities.

On a letter sent from Spittal to Klagenfurt, mailed on February 20, 1839, was affixed a stamp created by Ferdinand Egarter, who was postmaster at the time. The letter was addressed to Miss Konstanzia Egarter in Klagenfurt, and sent by her mother. Not a national stamp but still of great interest to collectors. (2)

Alois' uncle had a farm on the outskirts of the town, and was fairly prosperous. After his mother's death, his stepfather Georg would join them.

When reaching adolescence, Alois was hired on as a cobbler's apprentice, by a family member named Leder- miiller. However, the pay must have been low because there is a family story, that reveals a bit of the young man's temper. One day in a rage he threw his change purse out the window, bellowing that it contained only one kreuzer, and if he didn't have any more money than that, he didn't need the kreuzer either. (3)

The young Alois Schicklgruber does not seem to have been happy in his home. Apparently he was not treated as a legitimate child and was without expectation of inheritance. His son later related that his father left his native village fully determined not to return 'until he had made something of himself.' This 'some- thing, in accordance with small peasants' conceptions, was a profession of command: the police career.

At eighteen he became a border policeman in the Austrian customs service near Salzburg. He guarded the national border and hunted smugglers in a word, he became a man-hunter. An honorable profession, but scarcely friendly to man. In many countries it is the children of poor, out-of-the-way country sections who, from inborn hardness and contempt of humanity, choose the police profession. This illegitimate son of a small peasant took up his rifle and stalked the borders for human prey. The people in his native village must have looked on him with timid amazement when they first saw him in his shiny gold buttons, stamped with the imperial two-headed eagle, his pistol at his belt. The records [1855] show a young border patrolman: 'Alois Schicklgruber. (3)

At the age of twenty-seven, Alois would marry Anna Glasl-Horer, the adoptive daughter of a customs collector. She was fourteen years his senior, but was fairly well off. However, he abandoned her three years before her death from tuberculosis, and had already taken up with a young waitress, by the name of Franziska Matzelsberger, with whom he had at least two children: Alois* and Angela.

Franziska died young, and Alois would then be married for the third and final time, to Klara Pölzl, Adolf's mother.

Politics and Beer Halls

Throughout all of his marriages it does not appear that Alois was a faithful husband. It is said that he had a great fondness for singing clubs, beer-houses and waitresses, one of whom bore him a son when he was still married to his first wife. After her death he was wed to the waitress, who also gave birth to a daughter, Angela, before she too passed on.

In addition to his love for spirits, women and song, he was also passionate about politics, and in particular the notion of pan-Germanism. The same pan-Germanism that had resulted in the 1848 March Revolution, that killed William Eberhart's father and caused his mother Sophia, and stepfather Christopher Heffler, to leave their home in Mecklenburg, Prussia, and put down roots in Upper Canada.

And perhaps one of the songs Alois sang on his nights in the taverns, was one sang by Eberhart's parents, to a Joseph Haydn tune:

German women, German loyalty, German wine and German song
Shall retain in the world
Their old beautiful chime;
And inspire us to noble deeds
During all of our life.
German women, German loyalty,
German wine and German song!

By the 1860s the Kingdom of Prussia and the Austrian Empire were the two most powerful nations dominated by German-speaking elites.

Wilhelm I, also known as Wilhelm the Great, became the King of Prussia on January 2, 1861, and with the help of his Chancellor Otto von Bismarck, he established the German Empire in 1871. He then proclaimed himself to be the head of a union of German-speaking states.

Meanwhile the Kingdom of Austria had joined with the Kingdom of Hungary, in an attempt to compensate other ethniticities, which for many in Austria, only created a heightened feeling of German nationalism. Alois was one of these people, who would prefer to remain aligned with the German fatherland. As a result he became a staunch supporter of the Pan-German Reichsrat MP Georg von Schonerer.

So between hunting people down with his gun, womanizing and pounding his fists on the bars of the taverns at Braunau am Inn; Alois Schicklgruber led a very busy life.

Chapter Seven Continued: Alois and Klara


*Alois jr. would eventually marry an Irish woman with whom he had many children, including a son, William Patrick Hitler. This son would later make a name for himself by alleging that Hitler's family had a Jewish origin.


1. Der Fhehrer, Hitler's Rise to Power, By: Konrad Heiden, Houghton Mifflin Company, 1944, Pg. 38

2. Before the Penny Black, By: Ken Lawrence, 1996

3. Heiden, 1944, Pg. 39

Monday, April 26, 2010

Chapter Six Continued: Jessie

When William Aberhart first arrived in Brantford in 1901, he boarded at the Scott Residence, with Thomas and Mary Scott and their six children.

Most of his time was spent either in the classroom or with his religious studies, taking little time out for a social life.

However, that would change when he met Jessie Maria Flatt at a football game. The family story is that she pursued him, believing that as a teacher he would be a good catch.

Jessie was the daughter of George Flatt from Scotland and Jennet Clarke, who hailed from New Brunswick. Her father had arrived as a young immigrant and in 1871 his occupation was listed as a 'Farm Servant'. However, at the time of the next census in 1881, he was married and had a small farm of his own.

I don't think the family was very prosperous, and I suppose to the 23 year-old Jessie, she saw this as a way out.

They were married on July 29, 1902, and would have two daughters: Khona Louise, born November 20, 1903 and Ola Janet, born on August 31, 1905.

I don't know if they had much of a home life. It would appear that William was rarely there. Jessie never shared his religious beliefs, and always preferred social outings. However, her husband's fundamentalism denounced those things. He disapproved of theatre-attendance, card-playing, drinking, and smoking. (1)

Throughout their marriage, they seemed to live separate lives. Later Jessie would become involved in all the right societies and it was said that she had a fondness for jewelry and furs. I'm not criticizing her for this, because it must have been tough.

Given Aberhart's temper and impatience, it must have spilled over to home.

Besides, William himself always liked the finer things, dressed well and even throughout the Depression, drove a flashy car. He never took a vow a poverty.

Chapter Seven: The Schicklgrubers of Austria


1. Bible Bill: A Biography of William Aberhart, By: David R. Elliot and Iris Miller, Edmonton: Reidmore Books, 1987, Pg. 15.

Chapter Six Continued: A Question of Faith

A CULTURE OF DEFIANCE: History of the Reform-Conservative Party of Canada

When William Aberhart was still attending school, prior to getting his teacher's certificate, he fell out of a tree while picking apples, broke his leg, and was laid up at home until it mended.

During this time he may have studied the Bible intently, because it seems to be about then that his interest in religion took hold. He had attended Sunday School classes at the Presbyterian Church in Egmondville, but since he was adept at memory work, lacking reasoning skills, his knowledge was no doubt literal.

When he was finally able to return to his classes, he became alarmed at the religious program, which was following the social gospel, questioning the infallibility of the Bible.
While in my ... courses I had listened to the vaporing of modern theology. I heard them say that the first twelve chapters of Genesis was an allegory; that the story of the Flood was an Eastern Exaggeration, for the water had not covered the whole earth; that the crossing of the Red Sea was Eastern Imagery, and that it was the natural result of an East wind; that the yarn of Joshua and the Sun standing still was merely National legend, and not by any means scientifically accurate; that the story of Jonah and the whale was picturesque and figurative, and not meant to be taken in any literal fashion; that the first chapter of Matthew,
which describes the virgin birth, was unscientific and fanciful. I heard them say these things, and for a time I hardly knew where I was at. (1)

His faith wasn't put in question, so much as his memory of the Bible, which was how he defined his faith. This would have presented quite a dilemma for the young man, and began his disdain for liberal Christianity.

Brantford and a Spiritual Awakening

William arrived in Brantford at a time when the Niagara Bible Conferences had greatly impacted Church teachings. He joined the Zion Presbyterian Church, not long after they had lost their popular preacher, William Cochrane, who had stood at their pulpit since 1862. Cochrane had denied the new social gospel, maintaining that “Any toning down of such doctrines, is dishonorable in a Christian teacher, and deserving of severest condemnation.” (2)

The tradition continued and in 1902, the Church hosted their own Bible Conference, where the guest speakers were Elmer Harris and A.C. Dixon. Harris was the founder of the Toronto Bible College and would later be one of the consulting editors of the Scofield Reference Bible (1909). He was also the son John Harris, of the Massey-Harris company.

A.C. Dixon was a preacher at the Moody Church and regular attendant of the Niagara conferences. He was also the co-author a series of pamphlets defending conservative Christianity from the advances of modern theology, something that would have held a great sway with young William. The following year the speaker was Cyrus Scofield himself.

By this time, Aberhart was deeply involved with the dispensationalism that began with Reverend Edward Irving, who was considered a lunatic by his peers, and John Nelson Darby, whose writings on the seven dispensations, helped to form the basis of the Scofield Reference Bible. He also wrote a letter to his parents, berating them for not keeping the faith, that alienated him from his family.

A New Spiritual Mentor

There was another man who would have an effect on the direction of William Aberhart's future: Dr. William Nichol, who for eight years was the Sunday School Superintendent at the Zion Presbyterian Church.

Dr. Nichol had graduated from the school of homeopathy in Chicago in 1869, at a time when the famous evangelist, D.L. Moody was head of the YMCA, and was running an enormously successful Sunday School in the city. Nichol may have decided to follow in Moody's footsteps, because not only did he himself teach Sunday School and Bible classes, but he also became actively involved in the local YMCA, serving two terms as president. (3)

Nichol embraced dispensationalism and would eventually base his classes on the teachings of Cyrus Scofield. Young William was inspired and began teaching Bible classes himself, with his popular theme being the "Second coming of Christ." He continued to attend lectures by all of the top fundamentalists, and became especially enamoured with Dwight Lyman Moody. After seeing an ad for Scofield Bible studies, he sent away his $ 5.00 and completed the course at home. (4)

Besides teaching at the Zion Church he also ran classes at the YMCA and the Brantford Collegiate Institute. He then decided that he would like to become a preacher himself and enrolled in extramural studies at Queen's University, then a Presbyterian College:

His university education was rather unusual; he took his entire degree by correspondence, had no time for extensive research, and was never able to interact with his teachers and other students and thereby refine his thinking. That he was able to complete his degree at all shows a tremendous amount of ambition and initiative, for he had to carry his studies along with his duties as principal, husband, father, and lay preacher. Other than first-class honours in mathematics, his marks were very poor, reflecting the little time he was able to devote to his studies. He failed Greek twice, Hebrew once, and received only 35 per cent in Honours Political Science. He finally completed his B.A. degree in 1911. (5)

His theories were also becoming more erratic and not everyone saw a future preacher:

"He got in wrong with the ministers and officials of the Church because of his high-handed methods and his tendency to condemn all who were not of his opinion. Just prior to his departure for the West, there was increasing evidence of this intolerance." (4)

This would be the pattern of William Aberhart's life and the movement he created: Confrontation, Intolerance and erratic beliefs.

Chapter Six Continued: Jessie


1. Bible Bill: A Biography of William Aberhart, By: David R. Elliot and Iris Miller, Edmonton: Reidmore Books, 1987, Pg. 8-9

2. William Cochrane, Dictionary of Canadian Biographies Online, University of Toronto

3. History of Brant County, City of Brantford, Biographical Sketches, Warner and Beers, 1883, Pg. 526

4. The Social Credit Movement in Alberta, By: John A. Irving, University of Toronto Press, 1959, pg. 12

5. Elliot/Miller, 1987, Pg. 16

Chapter Six Continued: Classrooms and Battlegrounds

A CULTURE OF DEFIANCE: History of the Reform-Conservative Party of Canada

After finishing his model school training, William Aberhart returned to academia to upgrade, eventually acquiring a professional certification, and in 1901 accepted a teaching position in Brantford, Ontario, at Central Public School.

Central was the pride of the city, first built in 1850, and officially opened by Egerton Ryerson. Over the next two decades, the school was enlarged, until a fired destroyed much of it 1890.

A new school was erected on the site*, with a central tower and modern facilities. Since William had taken a business course, it was here that he would begin his teaching career.

Or his religious career? His military career? Maybe all three.

The 'New' Model Army

Keep your faith in God, but keep your powder dry. Oliver Cromwell (1599-1658)

If Aberhart's teaching methods could be defined with one word it would be 'discipline'. Every report stressed that he was a strong disciplinarian who kept a tight control over his students. However, he didn't learn those skills in school, but rather from studying Oliver Cromwell. (1)

Cromwell is a well known historical figure, probably best noted for making England a republican Commonwealth; but he has also become an inspiration to many evangelicals, because of his New Model Army that combined military skills with religious fervour*.

Rather than choosing his military leaders from among the gentry, Cromwell instead chose them on their merits. Their religious merits. Strong believers like himself "... who knew that God was on their side;" the men would often sing psalms just before going into battle. Discipline was also strict and the training thorough, making them professional soldiers for Christ.

Aberhart's classroom operated much like an army camp. He assigned each of his students a three-digit number by which he addressed them rather than by name, and stamped their assignments with a rubber stamp that read "Checked by Wm. Aberhart." ... With recalcitrant students he had no patience; for slight misdemeanors he is said to have doled out strappings on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, and for more serious offences he recom­mended suspension or expulsion. One former student claimed that Aberhart did everything he could to break the spirit of a child. (1)
In an essay he wrote himself he claimed that he viewed his classroom as a battlefield, and in choosing between individual creativity or group order, he chose order. The essay was riddled with military terminology. Students were not individuals but numbers, members of a group that needed to be controlled.

In 1905, the principal of Central School passed away, and William was named the interim principal, where he could put his 'military' training to better use. The following year he was given the job.

However, his religious calling took priority in his life, and would shape his future in ways that he could never have imagined.

Chapter Six Continued: A Question of Faith


*The school burned down again in 1982, but when they were removing the rubble, they discovered that it had been built on a burial ground. Looking back at records, clearly showed that this was known, since it appeared on an 1830 survey, but apparently ignored.

** A US firm was inscribing Biblical passages into gun sights which were also being used by the Canadian military. When discovered, it created a storm of protest, and they had to be removed.Sources:

1. Bible Bill: A Biography of William Aberhart, By: David R. Elliot and Iris Miller, Edmonton: Reidmore Books, 1987, Pg. 15

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Chapter Five Continued: A Conspiracy Unfolds

A CULTURE OF DEFIANCE: History of the Reform-Conservative Party of Canada

Dwight Moody, who was more commonly known as D.L. Moody, was a very successful evangelical leader and regular attendee of the Niagara Bible Conferences.

His father died when he was young and his mother struggled to bring up seven children, eventually being forced to send several of them away. At the age of 17, Dwight moved to Boston to work in an uncle's shoe store, but the stipulation for employment was that he must go to church.

This set him on a career path that would span several decades, and he would found the Moody Church, the Northfield Mount Hermon School in Massachusetts, the Moody Bible Institute and Moody Publishers.

But before reaching that pinnacle of success, he spent many years in the trenches, ministering to the poor and less fortunate.

At the outbreak of the Civil War, Moody became involved with the U.S. Christian Commission of the YMCA, and would continue to build the organization after the war. In the spring of 1872, he travelled to England and Scotland, where he spoke to sold out crowds, and it was here that he came into contact with the Plymouth Brethren.

Henry Drummond

While touring Scotland in November of 1873, D.L. Moody was assisted by a fellow evangelist, named Henry Drummond, a member of that Plymouth Brethren.

Drummond's work was important because he combined scientific studies with scripture, which was just what they needed to help battle against the discoveries of Charles Lyall and Darwin.

But more importantly, Drummond was the son of the late Henry Drummond Sr. who himself had been an Irvingite. He had also worked closely with John Nelson Darby, and it is believed that he financed Darby's speaking engagements as he travelled throughout the United Stated and Europe, selling dispensationalism. (1)

Moody and Drummond would create a powerful team for the next leg of this spiritual journey.

Cyrus Scofield

Cyrus Ingerson Scofield was born on August 19, 1843 in Michigan. His mother died in childbirth and his father remarried. When the Civil War broke out, despite living in the North, Cyrus joined the Confederates. Not much is known about him until he shows up in St. Louis.

At the time, the city was the hub of the fur trade, run by the French, including many French-Canadians. This was when he met Leontine Cerre, whose family was from Montreal, and they were married on September 21, 1866. Since Leontine was a Roman Catholic and Cyrus was not, the wedding ceremony took place before a Justice of the Peace.

Meanwhile he was working for his brother-in-law, Sylvester Papin, who was president of the St. Louis Board of Assessors, where he trained to be a lawyer. It was here that he became familiar with grants, titles, deeds and conveyances. In 1869, he moved with his family, which now included two daughters, to Atchison Kansas, where they appeared to be living a pretty lavish lifestyle.

He was still involved in land claims, eventually going to work in the law office of John J. Ingalls, and it was Ingalls who sponsored Scofield's admission to to the Kansas bar.(2)

After getting elected to the state legislature, at a time when they appointed senators, Scofield managed to get his friend named to represent Kansas in the senate. Shortly after, Ingalls returned the favour by convincing President Grant to appoint Cyrus Scofield to the office of United States District Attorney for the district of Kansas.

However, it was soon learned that the new DA had been involved with some questionable land deals that included blackmail, so Cyrus resigned his position and fled to Canada, where there was no record of him for about three years. (3)

By 1877, he was back in St. Louis, making a living on swindles and schemes and writing bogus cheques. He was caught and thrown into prison.(2) However, after supposedly being "witnessed to" he became "born again" and emerged from jail (early) with a new religious calling. However, not everyone was convinced that this conman was on the level:
“Cyrus I. Scofield, formerly of Kansas, late lawyer, politician and shyster generally, has come to the surface again, and promises once more to gather round himself that halo of notoriety that has made him so prominent in the past. The last personal knowledge that Kansans have had of this peer among scalawags, was when about four years ago, after a series of forgeries and confidence games he left the state and a destitute family and took refuge in Canada. For a time he kept undercover, nothing being heard of him until within the past two years when he turned up in St. Louis, where he had a wealthy widowed sister living who has generally come to the front and squared up Cyrus’ little follies and foibles by paying good round sums of money. Within the past year, however, Cyrus committed a series of St. Louis forgeries that could not be settled so easily, and the erratic young gentleman was compelled to linger in the St. Louis jail for a period of six months.

“Among the many malicious acts that characterized his career, was one peculiarly atrocious that has come under our personal notice. Shortly after he left Kansas, leaving his wife and two children dependent upon the bounty of his wife’s mother, he wrote his wife that he could invest some $1,300 of her mother’s money, all she had, in a manner that would return big interest. After some correspondence he forwarded them a mortgage, signed and executed by one Chas. Best, purporting to convey valuable property in St. Louis. Upon this, the money was sent to him. Afterwards the mortgages were found to be base forgeries, no such person as Charles Best being in existence, and the property conveyed in the mortgage fictitious.” (4)

However, the new and improved Scofield was about to embark on the biggest con job in his illustrious career.

The Conspiracy

James H, Brooks, as I mentioned before, was the man who was behind the Niagara Bible Conferences. Brooks had met John Nelson Darby on one of his visits to the United States and had become a devout follower of his dispensationalist theories, and the doctrine developed by a Jesuit priest named Manuel de Lacunza.

In 1801, Lacunza had written a book, The Coming of the Messiah, under a Jewish pen name; Juan Josafat Ben-Ezra. Rev. Edward Irving had the book translated into English from the original Spanish in 1827, and this book became much of the foundation for his doctrine, that was followed by the 'Irvingites'.

Darby had actually used this work for his own preaching, giving credit to Lacunza, but was told that he would have to stop. If Brooks was going to be able to pull this off he couldn't include the Jesuits.

So at the Bible conference of 1877, Brooks introduced his new protegee to J.L Moody, a man with a lot of prestige in the evangelical community. Without knowing of his shady past, Moody named Scofield as secretary of his YMCA, and they would remain close, with Scofield even officiating at Moody's funeral.

But what did Brooks want with Scofield?

At the time there were several wealthy Jewish Americans, who wanted a place in the religious awakenings. Through Scofield's old friend, John Ingalls, himself Jewish, he was introduced to several of these money people, including Samuel Untermeyer, a prominent Jewish lawyer, whose clients included the Rothschilds, and oil baron Lyman Stewart, whose company later assumed the name Unicol.*

These are the people who put up the money for the Scofield Bible**, which became the basis for a Judea-Christian heritage, which is now referred to as Christian Zionism.

Eventually the Niagara Bible Conferences were cancelled due to lack of interest, mainly it was said because they had focused too much attention on dispensationalism and not enough on Christian fundamentalism.

I felt it was very important to spend a bit of time on the religious background of this movement, because William Aberhart embraced all of this, and it became the foundation of what I refer to as the Reform political movement, that culminated in the election of Stephen Harper and his newly created Conservative Party of Canada.

From a Scottish cult based on the writings of a Jesuit Priest, to the dispensationalism of John Nelson Darby, to the Christian fundamentalism created by the Niagara Bible Conference, and finally to the creation of Christian Zionism by a conman named Cyrus Scofield.

And just as these high profile evangelical leaders got together to dispute scientific claims, so too does our current government. Our Science Minister, Gary Goodyear, is a creationist. I think that says it all.

Chapter Six: William of Tuckersmith


* Hamid Karzai, the president of Afghanistan, is a former employee of Unicol. According to Eric Walberg of Middle East on-line, "... Karzai himself was a member of the Taliban government from 1995-98, before Unicol hired him as an insider to try to clinch an oil pipeline deal." Many people believe the War in Afghanistan is really about those pipelines.

** The Scofield Bible would be the inspiration for evangelist Tim LaHaye's immensely popular Left behind series. LaHaye was the man behind the formation of the Moral Majority/Religious Right movement in the United States. LaHaye was also one of the founders of the Council for National Policy, where Stephen Harper gave his 1997 speech that surfaced during an election campaign, and many believe saved Canada from a Harper majority in 2006.


1. The Life and Work of Prof. Henry Drummond, by Rev Finlay Stewart

2. Dancing Around the Golden Calf, By: John S. Torell, European American Evangelistic Crusades, The Flaming Sword, January-March 2007

3. The Incredible Scofield and His Book, By: Joseph Canfield, Ross House Books, 1988

4. Cyrus I. Scofield in the role of a Congregational Minister, The Daily Capital, Topeka, Kansas, August 27, 1881

Chapter Five Continued: The Irvingites and Dispensationalism

A CULTURE OF DEFIANCE: History of the Reform-Conservative Party of Canada

Oh! it is needed, much needed at present, a leading back to the cross. I saw that night, and often since, that there will be an outpouring of the Spirit on the body, such as has not been, a baptism of fire, that all the dross may be put away. Oh there must and will be such an indwelling of the living God as has not been—the servants of God sealed in their foreheads—great conformity to Jesus—his holy holy image seen in his people.
Margaret MacDonald Visionary (1)

The notion of the Rapture and an Antichrist, has been around for centuries, but it first gained prominence in the modern world, due to the efforts of a Scottish theologian by the name of Edward Irving.

Irving was a scholar whose circles would be other scholars and members of the upper class. However, when he first put his theories to the test, they were mostly scoffed at by his peers. As a result, he was lampooned in Christian journals and dismissed as being a lunatic.

So instead Irving found his disciples amongst the poor and down trodden, who would come to be known as Irvingites. To many then and now, this was really a cult, that engaged in questionable rituals, which included speaking in tongues.

But one family that enjoyed these orgasmic liturgies, were the MacDonalds of Port Glasgow, Scotland; and apparently during one of their ceremonies in 1830, 15 year-old Margaret MacDonald had a vision of the Rapture. She wrote everything down in a lengthy dissertation, or relayed it and someone else wrote it down, which was delivered to leading members of the clergy. The quote above was part of it.

Now I'm not trying to question a person's religious beliefs, but am just trying to provide a history of this movement. However, I question this story, simply because it's highly unlikely that Miss MacDonald could have created such a scholarly account. I think that it was probably written by Irving, and distributed to the religious hierarchy, in an attempt to validate his claims. I've no doubt that she had a vision, but it was probably inspired by notions already planted by the good Reverend.

In 2000, when Stockwell Day was running as leader of the Alliance Party, to oust then Prime Minister Jean Chretien, journalist and author Gordon Laird investigated Day's past, in particular his days spent in Bentley Alberta as a lay preacher (Day has had no formal training and in fact holds only a high school diploma). Laird interviewed the man who took over from Day when he left to run for political office in the provincial legislature.

Gregory Rathjen says that when Day left in 1985 to pursue a political career, the assistant pastor left behind a community that was deeply divided. Rathjen arrived in 1986 to a disaster: a demoralized congregation had shrunk almost by half, allegations of fraud were afoot, and the church owed $12,000 to creditors.

Factions were warring. It was a dark time in Bentley. "The church leaders had risen to unquestioned authority," explains Rathjen. "They had moved away from the congregational government with the assumption "You're here to serve and not ask questions." Rathjen reports that, before its collapse, the former Bentley Christian Centre was a renegade Pentecostal church that instituted a divine mandate to replace grassroots congregational representation.

Throughout this period, Stockwell Day was assistant pastor and school administrator. "They changed their by-laws so that the people would have no say - leaders to be appointed by other leaders, as determined by scripture," explains Rathjen. "It was a haughty, arrogant, pride-filled success story that led to disaster." Fuelled by American-style revivalism, the church emphasized radical gospel practices - such as speaking-in-tongues - that whipped worshippers into a frenzy. "They have emotional experiences and then try to build a doctrine around it," explains Rathjen. The intensity of the church and constant stream of visiting American pastors gave Bentley an international profile within fundamentalist circles. But the church eventually succumbed to its own extremes. "I would say that it was as close to a cult as you can get," says pastor Rathjen. (2)

This sounds very much like the rituals created by Reverend Irving.

John Nelson Darby

One of the religious leaders who may have received a copy of Mary MacDonald's dissertation, was John Nelson Darby, a kind of renegade Irish-Anglican evangelical, who came to represent the Plymouth Brethren. He is also credited with being the father of modern day dispensationalism.

The story, or at least one of them, is that Darby visited with MacDonald and immediately inserted her visions into his dispensationalist theories.

However, I don't believe that was done until later, inserted for other reasons, which I will describe later.

What is known is that Darby fell off his horse about 1830, and while recovering, began to study the Book of Revelations in earnest, and from them created his dispensations.

There are seven of them, the first being Adam and Eve and the Garden of Eden. This is followed by Noah and the flood, Abraham, Israelites, Gentiles, the Holy Spirit and the Millennium. The first six ended in failure.

However, according to author C.H. Fisher, and several others, Darby did not incorporate his new rapture theories into his text. In the December 1830 issue of "The Christian Herald, he was still supporting the ancient tradition, and continued to do so until 1839. "Later on in the nineteenth century Darby incorporated the idea of the any-moment secret into a last-days scheme which has come to be known as Dispensationalism." (3)

And indeed it was a scheme.

Chapter Five Continued: A Conspiracy Unfolds


1. The incredible cover-up : the true story on the pre-trib rapture, By: Dave MacPherson, Logos International, 1975, ISBN: 978-0931608063, Pg. 162

2. Bentley, Alberta: Hellfire, Neo-Nazis and Stockwell Day, By: Gordon Laird, 2000

3. Pretribulation Rapture: What if it Isn't True?, By: C. H. Fisher, Chapter Four

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Chapter Five: Spiritual Awakenings

A CULTURE OF DEFIANCE: History of the Reform-Conservative Party of Canada

In October of 1841, a British lawyer and geologist, Charles Lyall, visited Niagara Falls in Canada to study rock erosion, and determined that the Niagara Gorge was about 35,000 years old, much older than the Young Earth Creationists had estimated, or at least had made fit Biblical history.

This study was only one of many done by Lyall, in his determination that the earth had been shaped by ‘slow and gradual’ processes over countless millions of years.

Lyall's studies were also brought to the attention of another scientist, by the name of Charles Darwin, and he carried with him a text by the geologist, which he read on his famous voyage of the HMS Beagle.

In 1859, Darwin's On the Origin of Species was published, complementing Lyell’s arguments, but further alarming others who still supported the infallibility of the Old Testament. Not only was the chronology of the ancient script now being questioned, but the story of Adam and Eve, and the lineages that had been created from the first coupling.

Meanwhile, a liberal Christian movement had emerged, that attempted to accommodate the new scientific discoveries. They did not question that God existed, but instead of simply memorizing text, they sought to understand the message that the text was trying to convey, and how they could relate that to a modern world. As such, students of liberal Christianity were encouraged to challenge the scriptures, and seek meaning. (1)

Naturally this upset many Protestant evangelicals, who were not prepared to challenge a single word of what was written centuries ago. So instead they challenged the scientists.

And the fact that Lyall would later alter his findings at the Niagara Gorge, was all the proof they needed that everything he wrote was a fraud, and by association, Charles Darwin as well.

Of course, these evangelicals had the advantage, because they didn't have to prove their assertions. The fact that they were written was all the proof they needed.

So in 1876, a well-known Bible teacher and Christian author, James H. Brookes, organized the "Believers' Meeting for Bible Study", where they discussed the best way to deal with the new threats imposed by science and the "liberal morality", which was even being adopted by many forward thinking evangelicals.

In 1878, they produced a document that came to be known as the "Niagara Creed" and from that, Christian fundamentalism was born.

The main points of the creed were:

1. We believe "that all Scripture is given by inspiration of God," by which we understand the whole of the book called the Bible ...

2. We believe that the Godhead eternally exists in three persons, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit ...

3. We believe that man, originally created in the image and after the likeness of God, fell from his high and holy estate by eating the forbidden fruit ...

4. We believe that his spiritual death, or total corruption of human nature, has been transmitted to the entire race of man, the man Christ Jesus alone excepted; and hence that every child of Adam is born into the world with a nature which not only possesses no spark of Divine life, but is essentially and unchangeably bad ...

5. We believe that owing to this universal depravity and death in sin, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless born again ...

6. We believe that our redemption has been accomplished solely by the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ, who was made to be sin, and made a curse, for us, dying in our room and stead ...

7. We believe that Christ, in the fullness of the blessings He has secured by His obedience unto death, is received by faith alone, and that the moment we trust in Him as our Savior we pass out of death into everlasting life ...

8. We believe that it is the privilege, not only of some, but of all who are born again by the Spirit through faith in Christ as revealed in the Scriptures, to be assured of their salvation ...

9. We believe that all the Scriptures from first to last center about our Lord Jesus Christ, in His person and work, in His first and second coming; and hence that no chapter even of the Old Testament is properly read or understood until it leads to Him ...

10. We believe that the Church is composed of all who are united by the Holy Spirit to the risen and ascended Son of God ...

11. We believe that the Holy Spirit, not as an influence, but as a Divine Person, the
source and power of all acceptable worship and service ...

12. We believe that we are called with a holy calling to walk, not after the flesh, but after the Spirit, and so to live in the Spirit that we should not fulfill the lusts of the flesh ...

13. We believe that the souls of those who have trusted in the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation do at death immediately pass into His presence, and there remain in conscious bless until the resurrection of the body at His coming ...

14. We believe that the world will not be converted during the present dispensation, but is fast ripening for judgment ... (2)

These 14 points were absolute and there would be no debate, though there would be a little tweaking.

From 1883, their meetings were held at Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, in the Queen's Royal Hotel, and would continue being held there, with the exception of 1884, until the conferences were discontinued in 1897.

Chapter Five Continued: Irvingites and Dispensationalism


1. The Christocentric Liberal Tradition, The Roots of the Christocentric Liberal Tradition, By: Terry Matthews, Lesson 7

2. In Pursuit of Purity: American Fundamentalism Since 1850, by David O. Beale ISBN 0-89084-351-1

Chapter Six: William of Tuckersmith

A CULTURE OF DEFIANCE: History of the Reform-Conservative Party of Canada

William Aberhart Jr. was born on December 30, 1878 (1), in Hibbert Township, Perth County, Ontario; the fourth child and third son of William Sr. and Louisa (Gourica) Pepper. His family owned a rather large and prosperous wheat farm, and were not terribly sociable, so Williams' early years would be spent there with siblings.

He first attended school at Hibbert #7, a one room schoolhouse, but at the age of eight, the family moved closer to town so that their eldest children would have an opportunity to attend high school. The remainder of William's elementary school days would be spent in Egmondville.

By this time, the town had a gunsmith, cobbler, weavers, blacksmiths, a woolen mill, tanneries, several general stores, a cider mill, at least five hotels, a brewery, ashery, pottery, sawmills, gristmills, a brick and tile yard, cabinet makers and an undertaker, a German Lutheran as well as Presbyterian Church, a schoolhouse of course and a post office.(3)

His paternal grandparents were both deceased, though their history was woven into the tapestry of that small town.

The Aberhart home (shown above)was a white, two-story farmhouse, covered with clapboard siding, standing on an open rise of land, with a picturesque view from all directions.
The house had a spiral staircase to the second floor, and the parlour boasted a piano and fine furniture. Out behind the house were farm buildings later shaded by the large deciduous trees that the boys planted. A stream flowing through the back of the property provided a ready supply of fish and a source of water for the livestock. A new piggery that William Sr. had constructed along the latest scientific principles, and which was described as a ''palatial mansion,'' was the talk of the community and earned him a reputation as a progressive farmer." (2)
A normal day for William would be up at 4 or 5 to milk the cows and then deliver the milk before going to school, then another delivery in the evening.

His father was stern, though it is said that his mother was the disciplinarian. She was not affectionate with the children, but pushed them to succeed, and stressed the importance of education.

William was only an average student though he excelled at mathematics and penmanship, and had an almost photographic memory, but few reasoning skills. He also enjoyed music and taught himself to play several musical instruments.

Children he went to school with claimed that he did not really get along well with other students, so had no real friends.

He later attended Seaforth high school, where he earned a reputation as a top athlete, and was nicknamed "Whitey" because of his light hair colour. From there he enrolled in a model* school and obtained a third class certificate allowing him to teach elementary classes.

He thought he had found his calling.

*Model Schools were established to train young people how to teach. The quality of instruction was poor, but there was a great demand at the time for teachers, especially in rural areas, so it was really the best they could do. I think the focus was on discipline and maintaining control of a classroom.
1. Registrations of Births and Stillbirths – 1869-1909. MS 929-40, Toronto, Ontario, Canada: Archives of Ontario.

2. Bible Bill: A Biography of William Aberhart, By: David R. Elliot and Iris Miller, Edmonton: Reidmore Books, 1987, Pg. 3

3. Egmondville and Van Egmond House, Heritage of Huron East, Virtual

Friday, April 23, 2010

A Culture of Defiance: Introduction

A CULTURE OF DEFIANCE: History of the Reform-Conservative Party of Canada

In 1997, Stephen Joseph Harper, our current, at least current to my writing this, Prime Minister; was asked to give a speech on the Canadian political system, to the Council for National Policy, a secretive American lobby group, who were meeting in Montreal. CNP is an influential right-wing organization founded by Tim LaHaye and James Dobson, and in many ways are the military arm of the Religious Right in the United States.

Tim Lahaye is the co-author, along with Jerry B. Jenkins, of an enormously successful series of books, called Left Behind. These books have formed the foundation of Christians United for Israel, a religious group pushing for the annihilation of Muslims in the Middle East, as a step on their road to Armageddon. CUFI's founder John Hagee, calls it "God's Foreign Policy".

Their Canadian head is Charles McVety, a man who has a lot of clout with our current government and enjoys not only ready access to people like Jason Kenney (Immigration), Stockwell Day (Treasury) and Jim Flaherty (Finance), but also Stephen Harper himself.

James Dobson is the founder of Focus on the Family, an anti-abortion, anti-gay rights, anti-public school, organization; that includes several of Harper's MPs; like Maurice Vellacott, Rob Anders, and Brad Trost. The Canadian founder of Focus on the Family, Darrel Reid, is now Harper's deputy chief of staff.

Dobson assisted in Harper's political success by running a series of radio ads in Canadian cities against same-sex marriage; an issue that Harper then adopted as part of his reaching out to the social conservatives.

When that 1997 speech first surfaced during the 2005-2006 federal election, it raised a lot of red flags, once again adding fuel to the fear of Stephen Harper's "Hidden Agenda".

Many quotes were pulled from it, and the Liberal campaign included bits and pieces. It is believed that it actually cost the Reform-Conservatives a majority government.

But I've read that speech several times, and what I get from it is arrogance. An arrogance that implies that we are all wrong, but we're too ignorant to even know that we are all wrong. That only he can see the error of our ways.

Now, having given you a compliment, let me also give you an insult. I was asked to speak about Canadian politics. It may not be true, but it's legendary that if you're like all Americans, you know almost nothing except for your own country. Which makes you probably knowledgeable about one more country than most Canadians.

What was the point of that remark? He's speaking to Americans, about Canadians.

First, facts about Canada. Canada is a Northern European welfare state in the worst sense of the term, and very proud of it. Canadians make no connection between the fact that they are a Northern European welfare state and the fact that we have very low economic growth, a standard of living substantially lower than yours, a massive brain drain of young professionals to your country, and double the unemployment rate of the United States.

In terms of the unemployed, of which we have over a million-and-a-half, don't feel particularly bad for many of these people. They don't feel bad about it themselves, as long as they're receiving generous social assistance and unemployment insurance. (1)

It's almost like an attack ad. Very much the way he acts in Parliament now against his political opponents, only in this case, it was against the Canadian people.

It wasn't a clever speech. There were no great pearls of wisdom. It was flip and if he was actually trying to educate this group on Canadian politics, it would have only created confusion. He talks about 'Whigs' without explaining who they were. States that most Catholics vote Liberal for 'reasons he didn't want to get into.' Why bring it up at all if he wasn't going to qualify it?

We do get a glimpse into his ideology when he refers to women's rights as 'feminist' rights, and "... including some that would just horrify you, putting universal Medicare in our constitution.." What is so horrifying about universal Medicare?

If I were in the audience, I definitely would never have got the impression that this was a man with political aspirations. If he wrote that speech it was grade eight at best.

"...and a whole bunch of fairly non-conservative economic things."

" ... and a whole bunch of other things"

But I think that it helps to define this movement. It has always been about protest and arrogance and ignorance. They adhere to the Old Testament and have a view of Canada as being in moral decay. They want to return to the "good old days" when women knew their place and there was prayer in school, and a sea of white faces.

In it's seventy-five year history, there have only ever really been five leaders: William Aberhart, Ernest Manning, his son Preston Manning, Stockwell Day and Stephen Harper, and their political views have not progressed but stagnated.

Their arrogance is born of ignorance. And rather than try to raise the level of debate, they want to bring it down to their level. Experts in their field are "elites", well-educated are reduced to "university types", advocates are "fringe-groups".

There is no desire to move Canada forward only dismantle it and strip it down. Isolate us from our former allies with high-handed foreign policy, and a refusal to co-operate. Base our laws on the Bible and our future on Biblical prophesy.

They have made Canadian politics so toxic that our very democracy is at risk. Secrecy is the order of the day and their media control is alarming.

This is a movement that was founded on anti-Semitism, nurtured on racism, and fueled by extremism. And every time a party they create is exposed, they simply re-invent themselves, but using the same old worn out parts. Social Credit - Reform - Alliance - Conservative. The only thing that really changes is the name.

And what will their legacy be? Will we even recognize this country when they're through? Can their damage be repaired?

People who once lived on the fringe, are now in control and they have aligned themselves with the most extreme elements, here and in the United States. It's frightening really, but it shows what happens when you don't pay attention.

Hopefully, you'll pay attention now.

Chapter One: Bold Moves


1. Full text of Stephen Harper's 1997 speech, Canadian Press, December 14, 2005

Chapter Four Continued: William and Louisa

A CULTURE OF DEFIANCE: History of the Reform-Conservative Party of Canada

By the time of the 1861 census, William Aberhart Sr. was living on his own, working as a blacksmith's assistant.

Egmondville had continued to grow, with a large Presbyterian church that was described as “a plain but spacious edifice capable of accommodating an audience of 450-500 people." William still listed his faith as Lutheran-Evangelical, but he was living in a Presbyterian home, and with no Lutheran church built yet, it's difficult to say if he practiced any religion at that time.

Constant Van Egmond was the magistrate, and since there was no jail in the village, he had the cellar windows of his house barred and used part of the cellar to incarcerate his prisoners. (1)

After Egmond's father died, the bulk of his land was offered at a sheriff’s sale. Eventually, it came to be owned by Christopher Sparling, who persuaded the Buffalo, Brantford & Goderich Railway (later the Buffalo & Lake Huron) to buy their right-of-way through his property. Shortly after, three lawyers and land speculators from the east, Patton, Bernard and Le Froy, bought land from Sparling and immediately had the whole lot surveyed into a town plot they registered as Seaforth. They also cinched the deal for the location of a railway station in Seaforth, offering land and agreeing to build the station at their cost.(2)

As a result, businesses began moving from Egmondville into Seaforth, and soon the town had retail stores, a doctor, a blacksmith, a post office, several hotels, a wagonmaker, and a number of firms engaged in the building trades and in the buying and selling of grain. (3)

In 1868 salt was discovered, giving a further boost to the area, and William went to work in the salt mines. He would also drive stagecoach, trading off with his brother Charles. His half-brother Henry, who was just a baby when they left Prussia, then worked as a teamster for the brewery in Egmondville.

About 1870 William married Louisa Pepper, daughter of John and Elizabeth Pepper from England. (4) Louisa's mother had died when she was quite young, and her father remarried on February 1, 1858, providing a mother for Caroline, Thomas, Timothy and Louisa.

His new wife was Rebekah Dobson, daughter of John and Ruth Dobson from New Brunswick. She was just 24 at the time, and Louisa's father was 44.(5) The couple would add four more children to the roster: William, Roger, George and Lucy.

Louisa's father was a farmer and classed as a Yeoman, meaning a man who cultivated his own land, with political rights, and he was on the voters list as early as 1851. Since grain was a huge industry at the time, and Seaforth a hub for grain distribution, Louisa may have met William on one of her father's trips to market.

In 1874, the couple were able to purchase a 20-hectare wheat farm at the crossroads of Tuckersmith and Hibbert Townships, about 14 miles from Seaforth. He was very successful and was able to gradually increase his holdings, even buying out his brother Henry's adjoining acreage.

William was described as tall and powerful, his muscles hardened from the salt mines, and it was said that he could toss barrels of salt into his wagons with little effort. Local merchants knew him as a thrifty man who struck hard bargains .

He had penetrating blue eyes and a flowing blond beard, worn in the Mennonite fashion, which blew over his shoulders as he drove his high-spirited horses through the countryside. He took no part in the community life, only occasionally joining his friends for drinks at the local tavern. (6)

By now he stated on census reports that he was a member of the 'free church' and since Louisa's father had suggested that he belonged to no church, this was not part of their lifestyle.

Louisa Pepper Aberhart worked alongside her husband on the farm. She was short and, in later life became quite stout, but strong and strong willed. All but one of her children were born without medical assistance, and she even left her bed shortly after the most difficult birth, to milk an ornery cow. She was described as a solitary person, who believed that a woman's place was in the home. She never voted or became involved in the women's suffrage movement, stating that "if men did not know how to run the country, she did not see how women could be expected to do any better." (6)

A bit of anger over the government for something it would appear.

The couple would have eight children, all born in the two-story, buff-coloured brick farmhouse, that was home until 1886, when they moved into Seaforth. Their son Louis ran a mill and machinery business, John became a blacksmith; Charles went to Pharamcy School and his parents set him up in a business; Wilfred became a barber and Harry a crook. Daughter Augusta moved to the U.S. with her husband, where she ran a rooming house and Nettie married and became the proprietor of a restaurant.

And son William (the tall lad in the middle, back row) would choose two unlikely careers, given the family's position on religion and politicians: A preacher and the Premier of Alberta. But he would play an even more important role, by combining those two things, starting the movement toward a desired federal theocracy in Canada.

Chapter Five: Spiritual Awakenings


1. Egmondville and Van Egmond House, Heritage of Huron East, Virtual Tour

2. Seaforth Beginnings, Dean Robinson, Erin: Boston Mills Press, 1987.

3. A Souvenir of Seaforth, Canada. Toronto: The Grip Printing and Publishing Co. for Henderson, Seaforth, c. 1900

4. 1851;Census Place: Fullarton, Perth County, Canada West (Ontario). Schedule: A. Roll: C_11747, Page 57, Line: 10.

5. Huron District Marriage Register, Original Book, R.G. 80-27-1, Vol. 13, Microfilm MS 248 Reel #2, Provincial Archives of Ontario, Toronto.

6. Bible Bill: A Biography of William Aberhart, By: David R. Elliot and Iris Miller, Edmonton: Reidmore Books, 1987, Pg. 3