The Year of Choices

H.L. Mencken

As the new year approaches, it is with both hope and trepidation that I watch its advance. We have lived in the freest and most prosperous country on Earth for more than a century, but as the new year is upon us, all of that seems poised to slip forever beyond our reach. We have a Marxist ideologue in the White House, and he will remain there at least another four torturous years, but given the legion of goons and imbeciles who elected him, it is almost certain that the damage they will bring forth upon our nation will be mortal. I needn’t re-hash the litany here, for my readers are all too well aware of what may lie in store for us in the coming years. Hyperinflation, gun confiscations, and civil unrest in light of both of these, as well as other unforeseen causes that may lay our Republic down for the last time. The forces of a growing darkness seem to be intent on consuming the globe, and it seems that it will be here, in America, where we will make the final call.

There is also hope, for while Americans maintain their vigilance, those who are creating such ill results will not carry out infamy unopposed. It’s certain, although the manner of the opposition may as yet be unknown. For those of us who love our constitutional republic, loyal to its founding principles, and committed to their restoration, we can abide no form of retreat or surrender. This is our nation, as much as anybody’s, and it’s long past the time that we begin to assert that case. In 2013, come what may, I believe the future of America will be decided, not by some ogre with executive power, but by common-sense, everyday Americans who will be compelled by events to decide whether to cower in the shadows or courageously rise up to confront the encroaching gloom and the tyranny that lies concealed in its shadow. 2013 will be a year of choices, millions of them, made by individual Americans, who must soon choose between resolve and surrender.

Mark Levin calls it a choice between “Liberty and Tyranny,” but I do not believe my fellow patriots should be afraid, except that they must be afraid to fail, and afraid to turn aside from the conflict that seems now almost inevitable. You see, if we fail, the world will know darkness for hundreds of years, and if we cower in the face of this looming threat, it will be we who will pay the price for our betrayal of those values we so vigorously defend. This may be the year in which words must be replaced by deeds, and it is the year in which we shall see how much stomach there is for remaining a free people. We will see financial crises, turmoil, and perhaps even famine, particularly if the dollar collapses as seems imminent. The politicians have concocted this entire “fiscal cliff” diversion precisely to keep you from noticing how they have raped and pillaged the America you had taken for granted.

Of all the great social commentators of the 20th century, there had been one who occasionally evokes imagery of biting sarcasm and wit, for which there is no good substitute in such times. H.L. Mencken wryly observed:


Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit upon his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin slitting throats.”


This may well be the year in which far too many ordinary men and women will be compelled to do just that. While Mencken undoubtedly intended nothing beyond metaphor, this could be said to be another way of conveying the same meaning as the contemporary phrase: “Going rogue.” This implies a willingness to ignore the rules in the name of decisive action. In 2013, we may all end up looking to hoist our own black flags and commence the slicing and dicing. When governments become too large, too intrusive, and too oppressive, there will always be some number who refuse to live under its yoke. When a culture becomes so corrupt that it begins to cannibalize its best and brightest, its most inventive and ingenious, it is the time in which much throat-slitting will indeed begin.

Ours has become a savage and vicious culture, in which innocence is defiled and destroyed, purity is maligned and mocked, and every form of vile indecency is celebrated. Those who work are now viewed as suckers by those who do not, and those who are to serve now openly demand servitude from the people, some segment cheering them on. I cannot believe that this had been the country in which any of us had imagined growing old, and I doubt but that our founders would be terrified at the prospects. It is now coming time for us to choose what sort of country we will be, but it will not be the politicians who will decide. It must be we who do the choosing.

I don’t know where we will summon all the courage that will be necessary. Some will look to their God, and some will look to their families, and still others will look at the injustices being heaped on their fellow man as the force to compel them to courage. It doesn’t much matter what particular source a person will draw upon, but I suspect this will be the year in which we discover whether we can summon enough to save us. Much as doing the responsible things are always among the most taxing and difficult, we who are so-inclined will do so out of love. No child was ever disciplined and taught by the whip of rage, and no successful revolution launched by a motive of hate and thievery. It has always been the firm hand of love, both in the family, and in the nation, that had guided us to our former state of prosperity.

Love does not mean endless forgiveness, and it is here that we must summon such courage as we are able. Some things are not to be forgiven, or forgotten, and we must not let our desperate hope for peace obstruct from our view the plain facts of an awful war some will wage upon us. America will be different in 2013, in the main because so many of her people have adopted avarice and hatred as their motives. Both the meaning and method of Justice has been forgotten, but one may wonder if we have even the capacity to remember them. What shall we choose? Time will tell. 2013 will show. We shall either be a free people, or we shall not. The choice is yours. I hope you will find as much happiness as this era permits you, but we mustn’t be afraid, in the name of an illusion of happiness to “hoist the black flag…”

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7 Responses to The Year of Choices

  1. susiepuma says:

    Excellent commentary Mark – 2013 is going to be memorable in more ways than one – remains to be seen what we, as a supposedly ‘free’ people will do………………..

  2. the unit says:

    Hate being too long winded of too long written, but…anyway…

    About twenty years ago I asked myself …is the Constitution being followed? I knew nope. I started buying history and civics books at library sales and garage sales to see what had changed since it was taught to me in school. It probably happened sooner, but first history book I got saying it, published in ’63, mentioned Constitution as “living document.”

    Seems that since infringers couldn’t make it breathe the way they wanted it… it is now a dead document, likely buried as Dead Sea Document along with Osama in Arabic Sea or Indian Ocean, or wherever.

    One of those old books is one I have kept…has ink stamp inside…Academy of Sacred Heart High School Division, 713 Washington St., Hoboken, N.J. (no zip) first published 1920 (mine ’34). Page 7.

    “Dangers of Popular Government”…”1. Indiffence, 2. The Demogogue…a leader who seeks to gain politcal power for his own selfish purposes, and not his country’s good. The demogogue flatters the people and confirms them in their prejudices and wrong thinking, and if necessary lies to them. He would rather lead the people to their destruction than fail in his designs. 3. Tyranny…a tyrannical king can be overthrown, but when a majority is tyrannical, it’s tyranny cannot be successfully resisted. To say the will of the majority makes a thing right or wrong is a palpable absurdity. Right and wrong are what they are by their own nature.”

    I quoted as written, but there is lots more there I omitted for lack of space and typing skill, but intent not lacking.
    The above written by freemen, still had WWII to go and freewomen showed it too…and they all did. I learned what had changed in the teaching of our kids and citizens.

    • Mark America says:

      Unit, that’s all very true. Our Republic was designed on the basis that majorities could become tyrannical, and indeed, when a people begins to lose its moral grounding, they frequently become tyrannical. The demagogues have always encouraged this, because it is the path to removing all restraints upon their power. It’s looking pretty dicey for the home team, isn’t it?

      • the unit says:

        You asked me.

        Yeah. Our home team?… congress, court, administration…world team now. Home team has yet to re-establish manifest destiny, to rid us from Marxists/Progressives from sea to shining sea! Of course…how do? is the question.

        Hail Mary? I haven’t seen that work since Doug Flutie… and Jews…“Jews of Warsaw, the hour is drawing near. You must be prepared to resist. Not a single Jew should go to the railroad cars. Those who are unable to put up active resistance should resist passively and should go into hiding…..Our slogan must be: ‘All are ready to die as human beings.’” (google Warsaw Ghetto Uprising).

        Who the hell was that leader? I know how that worked out…not ready here.
        And won’t vote present.

  3. Supertx says:

    Well said, as always, although I do disagree with this:
    “It doesn’t much matter what particular source a person will draw upon”
    I think it matters very much, and drawing on the wrong source is likely what got us so deep into this mess. Drawing on the right “source” is the only way I see of getting us out.