Friday, April 17, 2015

How Much Today Looks Like Yesterday Said It Would

50 years ago, people would stop what they were doing, turn their attention to the radio to hear one particular commentator. His programs were short and to the point. He presented his commentary as though it were a story, using word pictures and other literary devices. His voice was distinct. People trusted him and he was trustworthy.

Here is a prediction he made way back in 1965. Some of you weren't even born then. But even you can understand how eerily accurate his prediction was.

His name was Paul Harvey. He is worth a listen.


Craig said...

Hey Joe,

How's the ticker? Hope you're doing OK. Paul Harvey wrote "If I Were the Devil" in 1964. He recited it often during his career, constantly updating it to reflect the times. This reading of it is from 1996.

If I were the devil, I'd play a recording from 1996 then lie and say it was from 1965 to fool the rubes into believing it was an eerily accurate prediction.

And that's the rest of the story.

Joe said...

If I were the devil I would teach liberals to miss the point of the written and spoken word. I would teach them that thee can only be one iteration of an essay. If I were the devil, I'd just keep on doing what I am doing.

Here is the text of the 1964 iteration of that essay. It is remarkably like the later version. It's point is EXACTLY the same. Only the later version proves the earlier.

If I Were the Devil

If I were the Prince of Darkness I would want to engulf the whole earth in darkness.

I'd have a third of its real estate and four-fifths of its population, but I would not be happy until I had seized the ripest apple on the tree.

So I should set about however necessary, to take over the United States.

I would begin with a campaign of whispers.

With the wisdom of a serpent, I would whispers to you as I whispered to Eve, "Do as you please."

To the young I would whisper "The Bible is a myth." I would convince them that "man created God," instead of the other way around. I would confide that "what is bad is good and what is good is square."

In the ears of the young married I would whisper that work is debasing, that cocktail parties are good for you. I would caution them not to be "extreme" in religion, in patriotism, in moral conduct.

And the old I would teach to pray — to say after me — "Our father which are in Washington."

Then I'd get organized.

I'd educate authors in how to make lurid literature exciting so that anything else would appear dull, uninteresting.

I'd threaten TV with dirtier movies, and vice-versa.

I'd infiltrate unions and urge more loafing, less work. Idle hands usually work for me.

I'd peddle narcotics to whom I could, I'd sell alcohol to ladies and gentlemen of distinction, I'd tranquilize the rest with pills.

If I were the Devil, I would encourage schools to refine young intellects, but neglect to discipline emotions; let those run wild.

I'd designate an atheist to front for me before the highest courts and I'd get preachers to say, "She's right."

With flattery and promises of power I would get the courts to vote against God and in favor of pornography.

Thus I would evict God from the courthouse, then from the schoolhouse, then from the Houses of Congress.

Then in his own churches I'd substitute psychology for religion and deify science.

If I were Satan I'd make the symbol of Easter an egg and the symbol of Christmas a bottle.

If I were the Devil I'd take from those who have and give to those who wanted until I had killed the incentive of the ambitious. Then my police state would force everybody back to work.

Then I would separate families, putting children in uniform, women in coal mines and objectors in slave-labor camps.

If I were Satan I'd just keep doing what I'm doing and the whole world go to hell as sure as the Devil.

Craig said...

The point is, ever since the invention of the devil and hell there has been a Paul Harvey, fretting Satan's hand basket.

There's nothing prescient in his '64' essay and the video misrepresents the airing of his address by 32 years.

Page two.

Joe said...

Craig: He aired it several times, slightly changed each time. Do a little research and you can find each time it was aired, script and broadcast.

Never mind. You neither know nor care to know. You're a liberal. What more can be expected.