The Expiration of America – Cal Thomas

The Expiration of America – Cal Thomas

The Expiration of America – Cal Thomas

Six years — that’s how long political columnist Cal Thomas thinks the United States has until its downfall. The TV and news veteran talks with host Charles Mizrahi about why he’s predicting the “expiration of America” … and what the nation must do to prevent it.

Topics Discussed:

    • Predicting America’s Expiration (00:01:44)
    • “Re-Education Camps” (00:08:57)
    • Where We Went Wrong (00:11:03)
    • A Higher Purpose for Living (00:17:40)
    • “We’ve Forgotten God” (00:19:48)
    • An Oasis in the Desert (00:23:27)
    • The Deal With Iran (00:26:25)
    • Returning to the Establishment (00:30:55)
    • The Next Four Years (00:32:58)
    • Political Hypocrisy (00:35:02)
    • Attacks on the First Amendment (00:40:30)
    • What to Change (00:44:11)
    • More From Cal Thomas (00:45:43)

Guest Bio:

Cal Thomas is a journalist and columnist who’s seen a lot over the course of his career. And in an increasingly divided America, he seeks to provide insight that comes from his study of history, and his firsthand experience. Thomas has authored several books, and also continues to provide political commentary on his website, CalThomas.com.

Resources Mentioned:

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Cal Thomas:

I don’t care if it’s a liberal or conservative idea… If it’s producing the results that were advertised at a reasonable cost and it cannot be done better by the private sector, we keep it. If it’s not, we get rid of it. That’s what we do in business. That’s what we do in every other area of life. But, you know, again, Reagan used to say the only proof of eternal life in Washington is a government program. A funny line, but full of truth. You know, it’s easier to kill a vampire than a government program. And the analogy is good because both suck the economic lifeblood out of a country.

Charles Mizrahi:

I’m Charles Mizrahi and this is The Charles Mizrahi Show. My guest today is Cal Thomas. Cal is one of the most popular syndicated columnists in the country. His column appears in hundreds of newspapers, and he worked as a political commentator for Fox News for close to 20 years. His most recent book is America’s Expiration Date. In it, he researches eight once-great empire as a nation, starting with the Persian Roman Byzantine empires and ending with the Russian Empire. What all these once great empires have in common is they all lasted just 250 years. He outlines how superpowers rise and fall and asks, “Is America next?” America’s 250th year is right around the corner in 2026. His book is a wake-up call on where we are headed and how we can escape our fate. I recently sat down with Cal to talk about what these great empires had in common, what caused their downfall and how America can survive and not only survive, but thrive.

Charles Mizrahi:

Cal, thanks so much for joining me today. I greatly appreciate you being on the show.

Cal Thomas:

Well, thank you for asking me, Charles. It’s a great pleasure.

Charles Mizrahi:

Cal, you’re an institution in the conservative world. You’ve been around a while—I don’t want to say how old you are…

Cal Thomas:

Thank you!

Charles Mizrahi:

But you’ve seen a lot. You have a lot of gray hairs. You’ve seen a lot of the ships come in and go out and you’ve been through a lot of administrations and you’ve seen a lot of changes this country has gone through, from McCarthyism to present-day civil war. I don’t know what better to call it when half the country’s going one way and half the country’s going the other. And that’s why I’m a little troubled.

Charles Mizrahi:

You wrote this book, America’s Expiration Date: The Fall of Empires and Superpowers… and the Future of the United States

Charles Mizrahi:

Now, before we dive into the book let me just tell everyone who’s listening… You’re a pretty optimistic guy. You believe greatly in this country. You love this country. You’ve always stood for the values this country has fostered and perpetuated. And you’ve come out with a book that puts an expiration date on America—like a container of milk—to the year 2026.

Charles Mizrahi:

So, Cal, without making me so depressed, tell me—before what’s in this book—what motivated you to write this book?

Cal Thomas:

Well, first, Charles, thanks for calling me an “institution.” I’d much rather be an institution than in an institution (which some of my detractors wish would occur).

Cal Thomas:

I don’t tout myself as an Old Testament prophet, but I do look at some of the people from the Old Testament who warned the ancient Israelites of the directions in which they were going—and how, if they continued on that path—it could lead to their personal and national destruction.

Cal Thomas:

Ronald Reagan used to say that we were only generation away from losing all the liberties and wonderful things we have about America. These values and virtues are not caught like a virus or a cold or the flu… They have to be renewed in every generation in order to be transferred to the next one.

Cal Thomas:

And the inspiration for this book was an essay by the late British diplomat Sir John Glubb found, in studying over 3,000 years in human history, that there was a pattern to nations that declined. And my contention is that we are following that pattern at the moment.

Cal Thomas:

Just a few of the examples include massive national debt. We’re $27 trillion in debt—highest ever. Biden says he wants to spend even more and tax even more… Uncontrolled immigration without assimilation is another characteristic of empires that have declined in the past. Biden wants to open borders and the immediate citizenship granted to undocumented workers who are here illegally. A loss of a shared moral sense. Who says anymore that there is objective truth? That there is a right or a wrong for human behavior or human relationships? So, I’m contending that these and other factors are extant now in America, and that if we don’t turn this around quickly, there’s no guarantee we will not suffer the same fate as these empires and nations that I write about.

Charles Mizrahi:

So, this book came out in the beginning of the year… The paperback just came out in September-time. It’s on Amazon. It got a lot—I think 400-plus—five-star ratings. It’s resonating with a lot of people. When did you put pen to paper and say, “I have to write this book”? How many years ago?

Cal Thomas:

I think two or two and a half years ago. It had nothing to do with who was in the White House… I think I would’ve written it if a Democrat had been in the White House for the last four years. I love history. I’m not an expert. I’m certainly don’t have a PhD in history, but I read a lot of history. David McCullough, for example—one of my favorite historians.

Cal Thomas:

I decided to reread Carl Sandburg’s magnificent four-volume work on Abraham Lincoln: The War Years. And one of the things that caught my attention was that there’s nothing really changing. I mean, you can change modes of transportation, you can change clothes, you can change lifestyles… but one thing you can’t change is human nature. And if we think the media are bad today—and they are—they were as bad, or worse, in Lincoln’s times. Rivalries, political positioning and posturing… All of these things were around in Lincoln’s time.

Cal Thomas:

But I think that every generation has to be warned of this sort of thing. We warn children to look both ways before you cross the street. And it’s important, I think, when you see a nation you love as you say I do… And I do love this nation. My father was in World War II along with all of his brothers, and I’m wondering if most of them would’ve gone if they knew what kind of country we would become 70 years later. So, I think it’s good to warn. You know, I’m not a prophet or the son of one, but I do see these characteristics now in our country. And I think it’s important to give a warning sign.

Cal Thomas:

Isaiah the prophet talked a lot about this—about standing on the wall and warning when adversaries were coming to attack. And so, that’s what I’m trying to do with this book.

Charles Mizrahi:

Jeremiah also did the same and stood at the temple and told these people, “What are you doing giving sacrifices?” And he lived a terrible life.

Cal Thomas:

Jeremiah’s my kind of guy! I’d say he was a big-time butt-kicker. He was alright!

Charles Mizrahi:

Yeah, he ended up almost killed… So, to be the “Jeremiah” is tough. And you’re basically telling me here that when you penned this book—and I’m sure it pained you to write…

Cal Thomas:

Yes, it does! I mean, just as it would pain a doctor to tell someone they have a terminal disease. Of course, it does! I would love to see this nation continuing on the path of prosperity and morality and a real education…

Cal Thomas:

People ask me, “Well, where’s the hope?” And I tell them that we have to capture the next generation. And by that, I mean we have to get our children and grandchildren out of what I call these “re-education camps”—public schools and universities—that undermine our values and morals, that re-teach history in their own image, that don’t believe in the Constitution or the rule of law, that impose their own worldview on kids… And that along with the peer pressure and social media, I think is ruining the next generation. And that’s why Reagan said, 40 years ago, that we’re only one generation away from losing it all.

Charles Mizrahi:

I don’t know if I read it in your book or heard it when you spoke at the Heritage Foundation… “You wouldn’t send soldiers to be trained in the enemy camp.” So, are you equating that these “re-education centers”—our universities and our school systems—are teaching our children a life that’s totally alien to the American values?

Cal Thomas:

Absolutely! And this is not my opinion… This is observable fact. If people would do the research, if they would learn what is being taught in these schools… They say, “Well, it wasn’t that way when I was in school!” No, it may not have been… but it is now! And, of course, people come up with all of these rationalizations. “Well, they have a good football program. They have a good basketball program. They have this or that or whatever.”

Cal Thomas:

I like something Barbara Bush said. She said, “Our success as a nation, your success as a family depends less on what happens in the White House and more on what happens in your house.” And that’s so true! And the reason I use the military analogy about sending our troops to enemy countries to be trained is because we are sending our children and grandchildren into these schools and universities that teach values, ideas and history that are counter to everything that most Americans believe in. And I think they would be shocked if they found out—and they should find out—what is being taught in these places and the incredible amounts of money that they’re being charged in tuition in order to send their kids there.

Cal Thomas:

Now, I’m a big school choice guy, and I’m glad the Supreme Court recently ruled in favor of school choice. And it’s funny that my liberal friends are all for choice when it comes to abortion, but are against choice when it comes to education for those fortunate enough to be born. So, how can you have choice in one thing and no choice in the other? Education is the last monopoly in this country.

Charles Mizrahi:

So, where did we go off the rails? When did you see that happening? Let me preface that by saying this… When you were a youngster, you grew up saying the pledge of allegiance in school, you had Washington’s birthday—not this President’s Day which means nothing to anybody…

Charles Mizrahi:

I remember—and I’m a lot younger than you—having celebrations in the auditorium. We had a flag and we read poems and we got a whole thing about Washington. We learned about the president. We learned about Lincoln. It wasn’t his mishmash of President’s Day. Memorial Day was taken seriously. We used to write letters—back in Vietnam—to soldiers who were taken captive, so there was more of a connection.

Charles Mizrahi:

Your time, in the shadow of World War II, was a different world. You had the Red Scare. People were more cognizant of the freedoms we had… Where did we go off the rails that a guy like you—who has seen so much—is basically telling me, “Charles, we don’t have schools—we have re-education camps”?

Cal Thomas:

Well, I think that prosperity is a wonderful thing, but it can also be harmful. C.S. Lewis said, “Prosperity knits a man to this world. He thinking he’s finding his place in the world, but all the while, the world is finding its place in him.”

Cal Thomas:

I was brought up with three primary values: Inspiration, followed by motivation, followed by perspiration improves any life. But we have flipped that now—mostly because of the 60s and 70s me-first generations—into envy, greed and entitlement. And what is being taught and underscored by our corrupt media that I am ashamed to be a part of, in many ways, is the notion of income inequality. I wrote a column a couple of years ago saying that I have a deep, dark secret that I felt the need to confess… That I suffer from income inequality. Yes, it’s true. There are other people who make more money than me. But you know what? I don’t care! As long as I have the opportunity consistent with my skills and ability to work hard to make a living that supports myself and my family, I don’t care if you’re making twice as much or more than me!

Cal Thomas:

But the attitude today is: If you make $2 and I make $1, You owe me $0.50 to make it fair! That’s socialism by any other name. This is a land of opportunity—not guaranteed outcome. And what we’re seeing in our country through identity politics and racial preferences and imposed guilt for slavery that none of us had anything to do with is a complete shift of our moral fiber and foundations. And if we continue on this path, it’s going to be more self-destructive.

Cal Thomas:

Lincoln and many other have said that if the United States is ever to fail, it will not be because we’ve been invaded by a foreign power. It will be because we have destroyed ourselves from within. I think that nothing could be more true than that.

Charles Mizrahi:

Can’t we say also that—during the Civil War, for example—we were more divided? We had brother fighting brother, we had a nation split, we had a president who was demonized and eventually assassinated. Such hate. Our country was less than 100 years old, right? “Four score and seven years ago.” So, our country was at a point where—if Lincoln didn’t do what he did—there’s be no more United States. Can one say that those times were much worse than what we have here?

Cal Thomas:

Well, as someone said to me once, you can’t baptize the past. You can’t take today’s situation and impose it on another era. And again, human nature doesn’t change. You can wear a toga or a suit or a t-shirt, but the human heart—you mentioned Jeremiah earlier—is desperately wicked. That’s a pretty good line. People had to be controlled so they won’t seek their lowest nature. And if they’re not controlled by God, then they have to be controlled by the state—acting under God—in order to promote the general welfare.

Cal Thomas:

Obviously, a Civil War with brother shooting brother is a horrible thing. But we’ve got a civil ideological and moral war going on right now in America. And it’s not with guns, but we’re separating and not talking to each other anymore. We’re all parts of groups. We’re in racial groups and gender groups and ideological groups… And if you think independently of that group, then you are not “sufficiently black” as Joe Biden said about any black person who voted for Trump. That’s the kind of groupthink that’s Orwellian! The notion of the individual and personal responsibility and accountability has virtually evaporated from the country.

Cal Thomas:

And if I were to be dropped into this nation right now without any knowledge of the past 50 years, I would think I was in a foreign country. Because nothing I grew up with, nothing my parents taught me… I didn’t know anybody who came from what we call a “broken home” then. Now, people who’ve stayed married for decades are the freaks! And shacking up or other alternative lifestyles—things that would have been shameful when I was growing up—are now accepted as normal. And this is part of the moral and cultural and spiritual decline that is attached to nations and superpowers that have declined in the past.

Charles Mizrahi:

So, great point. And I think you answered this already, but I’m going to ask you in a different way… You see the moral decline of the nation happening in the 60s and 70s where we take God out of society, out of the country, out of the pledge of allegiance, out of everything… We can’t even put up the Ten Commandments in courtrooms, and any sign of public religious expression is suppressed and considered “against the law.”

Cal Thomas:

Yeah, I think you have to get up in the morning and go to your job and make a living, but you need a higher purpose for life. I mean, if you’re just going to work to make money to buy stuff and, at the end of your life, put it in your will or have an estate sale, then there’s not a whole lot of purpose in living. Most people realize, as Peggy Lee sang years ago, “Is that all there is? Is that all there is to life? If that’s all there is, let’s break out the booze and have a ball!” So, you have to have a reason for living.

Cal Thomas:

One of my favorite old-time musicals, Carnival, had a song in it…

I’ve got to find a reason
For living on this earth
I’ve got to find a reason
For taking the space I take
Breathing the air I breathe
There’s more to this there’s more to me
Something in me that needs to
Do more than suck the breath from life
Like moss and leaves and weeds do

Holding up my head
Holding down a place
Being worth a name
To go with my face

I’ve got to find a reason
For living on this earth
Something to want
Something to be
Somehow to say
I am me

Cal Thomas:

And this is the longing for every human heart. And if you only find it in government, politics, money and possessions, all of these things will go away. You have to have a higher purpose for living. And thanks for allowing me to quote from one of my favorite musicals!

Charles Mizrahi:

No, I was hoping you would sing it.

Charles Mizrahi:

So now that we’re here… And I want to tell you, I don’t agree with everything in your book, but what I do respect is that you said, “I’m not a historian. I’m a journalist.” So, you weren’t looking at this from a historical perspective with having all the background of being a historian. And, by the way, you mentioned David McCullough. David McCullough wasn’t trained as a historian either, and he’s a great historian…

Charles Mizrahi:

So, you said you’re a journalist. And you went through—I believe—seven different periods of time, seven empires. And we’re the eighth superpower that’s falling into this decay. So, my question to you is this: If you could wave a magic wand and turn this back right now, what’s the one thing you would do?

Cal Thomas:

Well, first of all, I don’t have it—and no human being has it in their power to do this. Again, I’m going back to Lincoln. He issued a proclamation for a day of humiliation, fasting and prayer. And I think that this is what we need to do. He said, “We have been preserved these many years in peace and prosperity. We have grown as no other nation has ever grown, but we have forgotten God. We have forgotten the hand that graciously preserved us. And we are vainly imagined in the deceitfulness of our hearts that all of these blessings were produced by some superior wisdom of our own. Intoxicated with unbroken success, we become too proud to feel the need of redeeming grace, too proud to pray to the God who made us. It behooves us to humble ourselves before the offended power, and to pray for national clemency and forgiveness.”

Cal Thomas:

In the three spiritual revivals that have touched America, the result was a reduction in crime, reduction in alcoholism and spousal abuse—all these other things that some people try to cure through government. Now, politicians can’t impose morality on themselves. How are they going to be able to impose it on the rest of us? So, our primary problems in this country—and in every other empire I write about—are not economic and political. They’re moral and spiritual, and must be addressed on that level.

Charles Mizrahi:

You know, some time ago, I had Dennis Prager on the show.

Cal Thomas:

A great man.

Charles Mizrahi:

And Dennis said since he was in high school until now, nothing much has changed. And over the past 60 years, he’s always believed that if the Ten Commandments were prominently displayed in classrooms with people following them and understanding them, we would have a much better society, more morality and that a lot of the problems we have today wouldn’t be problems.

Cal Thomas:

Well, we now embrace multiculturalism in which all ideas are to be accepted. All faiths are to be accepted. There is no right or wrong. There is no objective truth. If you think you have a corner on truth, you’re a bigot, you’re a racist, you’re a religious fanatic. We don’t even discuss the subject anymore. You know the old line about two things you shouldn’t talk about at the dinner table: religion and politics. Well, I mean… What else? The weather? I mean, come on. These are the two of the most important subjects of our time.

Cal Thomas:

And it’s not about disliking or hating somebody else. It’s about having a conversation. How did you come to your point of view? Are you sure you’re correct? Why do you think you are? Do the policies you advocate work?

Cal Thomas:

I wrote a previous book called What Works, and my point in that book was: Look, I don’t care if it’s a liberal or conservative idea. If it’s producing the results that that were advertised at a reasonable cost and it cannot be done better by the private sector, we keep it. If it’s not, we get rid of it. That’s what we do in business. That’s what we do in every other area of life. But again, Reagan used to say that the only proof of eternal life in Washington is a government program. A funny line, but full of truth. You know, it’s easier to kill a vampire than a government program! And the analogy is good because both suck the economic lifeblood out of a country.

Charles Mizrahi:

So, here we are, right? We’re at 2020, about to go into 2021. Uncertainty. The country is divided—probably more than it has been in a long while. I don’t want to put a time limit when it was as divided as this because I’m going to definitely be wrong. But we’re pretty split. Do you see the average American pretty split in terms of either conservative or liberal or progressive or leftist? Or is this just a lot of noise we’re seeing from California and from New York while the rest of the country seems to get it right?

Cal Thomas:

Well, here’s the thing, Charles. You can’t get into physical shape by watching an exercise video. You have to go to the gym and work it out. And you can’t create a country that’s a good political and economic shape unless you take the time to investigate and study issues.

Cal Thomas:

Democracy, a constitutional republic, like we are, are not the natural state of nation states around the world. Most of those other countries are into a dictatorship, religious fundamentalism, discrimination against people who don’t toe the line (whatever the line is), no press freedom, no freedom of speech, no freedom of assembly, carrying identity cards…

Charles Mizrahi:

No freedom for women as well.

Cal Thomas:

That’s true. Yes. Suppression of women, absolutely. But we are an oasis in this vast desert around the world with lots of people who want to turn us into sand. It’s not just the Iranians—the primary funder of terrorism around the world—that John Kerry, negotiated such a rotten deal with. And thank God for Israel and Trump’s support of the Jewish state the last four years, or God knows what that state would be like today.

Cal Thomas:

But we have to, again, renew these values and we have to study the issues and we have to determine what has worked. Tax cuts, for example, and the reduction in regulations in the last four years that produced the biggest economic boom in the history of our country across all demographic lines—African-American, Hispanic, Asian… Why would a return of those policies be wrong if they didn’t work before and these policies are working?

Cal Thomas:

People have to start thinking like that. And they have to do their own investigations before they vote and not vote based on feelings. Look, I don’t like Trump’s personality, either. But if I have to make a choice between personality and great policies, I’m going with the policies.

Charles Mizrahi:

And 6 million people are off of food stamps during this time period as well as sufficient living with dignity.

Charles Mizrahi:

I want to touch on what you brought up with Iran… Explain something to me—because you’re a man with much more wisdom and age than I… I was just trying to understand this. Two years ago, Prime Minister of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu… Israel did the most amazing intelligence coup ever. Captured a whole storehouse of information and displayed it to the world and showed the abundance of material that Iran is working toward a nuclear bomb, and not nuclear energy. Named the people who were just assassinated—the head of nuclear program. Totally destroyed it.

Charles Mizrahi:

And since this was out in 2018, everyone knows that Iran was playing a shell game. They had no intention of ever stopping their nuclear program for destruction. They are the only member nation calling for the destruction and the obliteration of another member nation—Israel. No other nation has done that even though they share no border with them and they pose no threat to them. Yet we have an administration that’s coming in that wants to go back to a failed deal. Could you just give me some insight as to why they would want to go back to that?

Cal Thomas:

Well, I think, Charles, at least three reasons. And the most obvious, I would say, is anti-Semitism. And that’s different from throwing the racism label at everybody. But there has been—throughout the generations—a underlying strain of anti-Semitism and hatred for the Jewish people.

Cal Thomas:

Number two, I would say, is biblical illiteracy. The terrorists and the Muslim fanatics are not hiding what their objectives are. I’m sure you read the sermons from some of these pulpits of the Middle East. “Jews are responsible for AIDS. Jews are responsible for everything that’s bad in the world. Jews must be exterminated. Allah has ordered us to exterminate Jews—and the Christians after that—and impose Sharia law.” They say this openly. It’s not breaking news. It’s not a military secret. But you have a lot of biblically illiterate people in our country and, indeed, around the world—but especially in America.

Cal Thomas:

I’ll tell you a quick story. I did an exit interview with Condoleezza Rice when she was secretary of state, and I brought up some of these things. I said, “Madam Secretary, you’re a Christian woman. You’re open about your faith. You read the scriptures. And you see these statements that are being made against Jews and Christians—and even fellow Muslims who don’t agree with the fanatics.” And, basically, her answer was, “Well, you know, that’s what they say to their people.” Well, they say that to the world! Arafat said one thing to the world, another thing to his people. So, I think those two things…

Cal Thomas:

And the third thing is that the essence of liberalism, which is behind a lot of this, is about intent and feelings—not results. My good friend Bob Beckel—with whom I had written a column for USA Today for 10 years called “Common Ground” and a book by the same name—admitted to me once that the welfare state was wrong, and the Democrats should not have done that because it addicted too many people to government and alleviated personal responsibility and accountability. “But you see, our intentions were good,” he said. Yeah, well, the road to hell is paved with good intentions—and with the Left, they want to install a toll booth!

Charles Mizrahi:

So, where do we go with this? What benefit does the left or liberalism get by rolling back the clock to the 2015 Iran Deal? How is there a positive to anyone other than the Iranians?

Cal Thomas:

There isn’t! I don’t see any positive coming out of this at all—certainly not for Israel, certainly not for the United States. Why would you return to a failed policy? Because they want to return to the establishment. Trump challenged the establishment like nobody else. And that’s why many Republicans hated him—because they like the warm fuzzies sort of a nice column or an editorial in The Washington Post or New York Times saying how broad-minded you are.

Cal Thomas:

I remember when Reagan was elected in 1980, The Washington Post had denounced him almost every day. The lead editorial was, “Well, now Mr. Reagan needs to realize he’s president of all the people.” And by that, they mean: Give up your policies and do what the Democrats want, and we will praise you.

Cal Thomas:

You see the same thing with Joe Biden promising to “bring us together.” I wrote a column about this. What does that mean? How can you bring together somebody who is for federal funding of abortion at any stage in life, embracing the entire LGBTQ+ agenda, wanting to raise taxes, reimpose regulations, reestablish the Paris Climate Accord (which is a joke) and reestablish the Iranian nuclear deal? How is that going to bring us together? I said, “Tell me one thing that your side is willing to come over to my side on—or at least meet me halfway.” They never do because they don’t really mean it. And this is the lesson that Republicans and conservatives must learn.

Cal Thomas:

And Trump showed them this—that the only reason to attain power is to use it … Not to get approval from the establishment or the major media. And you use it not to accrue power to yourself, but in order, in the great words of our founding documents, “to promote the general welfare, provide for the common defense and ensure domestic tranquility.” We sure haven’t seen domestic tranquility this summer with all these riots and “defund the police” business going on, supported by Left-wing outfits like George Soros, Black Lives Matter and others.

Charles Mizrahi:

So, paint the picture for me for where you see us going in the next four years.

Cal Thomas:

Well, I’m not again, I’m not a prophet.

Charles Mizrahi:

I know that. You’ve definitely given the disclaimers, but, Jeremiah, I want to hear what you have to say.

Cal Thomas:

Again, I go back to Reagan because it was such a turning point in history. You remember how the left denounced him for putting missiles in Europe to challenge the Soviet Union that was building up? “Star Wars,” they derisively called the missile defense system.

Charles Mizrahi:

But even before that, he was calling the Soviet Union the evil empire. And academics at the time said, “How could you say that? It’s an alternative government. How could you say something like that?” And he said, “No. Evil empire goes in the speech.”

Cal Thomas:

That’s exactly right. And I think clarity is very important when you’re discussing issues—not just name-calling, but effective labeling. And Reagan was right. And, certainly, the mullahs in Iran are an “evil empire” as well. Look how they put down dissent. Look how they rig elections. You talk about rigged elections—look what happens over there!

Cal Thomas:

And look, we have to start with our own families. We have to start small. And the big picture, then, will take care of itself. But again, we’ve got to get our kids into the right schools—conservative religious schools that provide a foundation to their intellectual and moral life to teach the real history of the United States. You know, Rush Limbaugh talks about his children’s book series, Rush Revere. He says adults call in after they get these books for their kids and say, “I never learned these things in school.” And he says, “Exactly!” Why would you let a progressive raise your kids intellectually and morally? Then you are forfeiting your obligation as a parent.

Charles Mizrahi:

You know, that brings us to the ruling over Thanksgiving that I want your insight on. Because you wrote a piece on—it in all caps, I might add—on your site, CallThomas.com, which is “A Victory for Religious Freedom.” And I’m telling you, I was personally impacted by this in a major way—living in New York— where Governor Cuomo figured out (I don’t know how he came up with this number) that 10 people in a religious institution, even though it could hold up to 1,000 people, cannot stand during COVID. You can’t have more than 10 people. Even if the room hold 1,000 people, you could only have 10. So, over Thanksgiving, five-four ruling, Supreme Court blocked New York from imposing strict limits on attendance at religious services.

Charles Mizrahi:

My wife keeps asking me, “Does the governor have this type of power?” And apparently our rights—our individual rights—are really held by a thread when it comes down to it. Agree?

Cal Thomas:

Well, that’s right. And thank you for mentioning the column. As I said, I’m grateful for the ruling five to four. You know, Cuomo’s ruling was completely arbitrary. There were no mandates for all the demonstrators in the streets to wear masks or practice social distancing.

Charles Mizrahi:

Let me interrupt for a second. I want to read the ruling that you quoted here, because it’s just fascinating. Challenging went up to the Supreme Court. And I found this so amazing. You quote this—and this was great—”the court found it troubling that businesses the state considered essential were not subject to the same occupancy limits. Those included things such as acupuncture facilities, campgrounds, garages, as well as many whose services are not limited to those that can be regarded essential, such as plants, manufacture chemicals and microelectronics and all transportation facilities.” But religious institutions? No go.

Cal Thomas:

Well, that gets back to what we talked about earlier! The government sees itself as God and hands down these great directives from the political equivalent of Mount Sinai, Washington D.C., and you are expected to accept them. I think we need another revolution in this country. And I’m not talking about guns and killing politicians, but I’m talking about individual liberty. Because every time a liberty is lost, it’s almost impossible to regain. Sort of like virginity. You can’t get it back once you’ve given it up.

Cal Thomas:

And this whole business that somehow religious institutions should be singled out for special penalties is outrageous and would have offended the Founding Fathers. As I said in my piece, “While I’m grateful for the five to four ruling, I’m disturbed that it was five to four.”

Charles Mizrahi:

What were the other four thinking?

Cal Thomas:

Exactly! I don’t know about their own religious faith, but clearly, they’re thinking: Here is a governor who forced elderly people into nursing homes where they died of COVID who somehow has some kind of unique, divine insight into what’s best for everybody else.

Cal Thomas:

And one of the reasons that people increasingly distrust our leaders is because they are complete hypocrites. Look at Gavin Newsom, the governor of California. Went to Hawaii for a meeting. There’s a picture of him around the table—no masks, no social distancing. The governor of Colorado goes to Mississippi to visit his daughter or grandchild or whatever. And you’ve got other people doing this…

Charles Mizrahi:

Governor Murphy of New Jersey with his family… And de Blasio, the mayor of New York City, told us, “Do not travel if it’s unnecessary.” He was coming to his Brooklyn home to walk around Prospect Park. And he was telling people don’t travel anywhere. We couldn’t get out of our homes, and this guy was taking his nature walk!

Cal Thomas:

Yeah, well, this bothers me. When you give up authority to the government, when you make them supreme, then you’re into an Orwellian situation where Big Brother and Newspeak and New Think are the rage, and what you think is to be suppressed. And again, liberty, once lost, is hard to restore. And I worry about this five-to-four vote and these other justices. I’m so glad that Trump pushed through Amy Coney Barrett or it would have been four to four and the lower courts would have prevailed and so would have Cuomo, who is a disaster along with de Blasio.

Cal Thomas:

I mean, New York City used to be a fantastic place. Everything’s closed! Broadway… They say, “OK, well you can have 25%.” No restaurant can operate on 25% capacity. They can’t even pay their employees on 25% capacity! But all this stuff is arbitrary. And they get to eat and they get all the services that they want… They just don’t want you to have them.

Charles Mizrahi:

What troubles me and what really sent a shiver down my spine was New York’s restrictions. Quote, “I think that the ruling was strike at the very heart of the First Amendment’s guarantee of religious liberty.” So, I have seen, in my lifetime—and your lifetime, as well—the First Amendment really under attack. And we lived it, physically, in New York for several weeks. How can this stand?

Cal Thomas:

Well, if you don’t have a First Amendment, it’s very difficult to have the other nine. And the freedom of speech, the freedom to worship or not—as your conscience dictates—the freedom of association and the freedom of the press… Now, the press at the time this was written were not exactly complimentary to people like Thomas Jefferson and John Adams and the rest, but the founders understood that the press was to be a check on the government. And throughout history, the press has displayed some outrageous behavior, including during the Lincoln administration. But the notion of a free press to hold the powerful accountable, in my view, is being corrupted today as the press increasingly becomes an arm of the secular progressives of the Democrat Party.

Cal Thomas:

Just one of many examples… Here is Biden who came out and announced an all-female communications staff. Trump has an-all female communications staff! But that was totally ignored. And here is Biden over the weekend fracturing his foot while, quote, “playing with his dog.” Now, if you know that if that had been a Republican, especially an older Republican or Trump, the press would be saying, “He’s incapacitated! He’s unfit for office! He can’t stand upright.” But Biden, they give a pass to. It’s always that way. And it really is shameful. And I’m and I’m embarrassed for them.

Cal Thomas:

You look at The New York Times, Washington Post—front page. Every story—anti-Trump. Every editorial—anti-Trump, anti-conservative.

Charles Mizrahi:

Push all that aside… Before the election, Hunter Biden. Nothing.

Cal Thomas:

And still nothing!

Charles Mizrahi:

The New York Post… Twitter threw them off. This is suppression of the press. This fact couldn’t even get out there. This was pretty corroborated by many sources. Four years of this witch hunt for a Russian influence and manipulation of our election was just zero.

Cal Thomas:

Well, as a friend of mine says, the greatest power of the media is the power to ignore, the power to suppress, the power not to tell the truth, the power not to investigate when people who share a different political worldview are behaving in a nefarious and even illegal way. And so, this is why I’m grateful for shows like yours—for publications that don’t toe the line.

Cal Thomas:

But you’ve got to work, and you’ve got to search for the right material—not just that you agree with to reaffirm what you already believe, but objective truth. That’s why I love the Heritage Foundation and American Enterprise Institute—some of their think tanks and papers that really get to the heart of economic and political truth and history. But you’ve got to get it for yourself. You’ve got to dig it out. It doesn’t come to your doorstep like Amazon. And you’ve got to look out for it for yourself.

Charles Mizrahi:

Cal, last thought… America’s expiration date. How can we put this on hold? Just sum it up for me.

Cal Thomas:

Well, there’s a wonderful verse in the New Testament which says, “God has built futility into His creation in hope that the creation will turn to Him.” During my lifetime, we’ve tried everything. Right, Left, blue ribbon commissions, white papers. Now, we’re going to cure systemic racism. All these other things… But, as Lincoln said, we’ve forgotten God. So, that’s one thing.

Cal Thomas:

You know, back in the 70s, the chairman of Tiffany created this little sterling silver lapel pin that just said, “Try God.” You know, you’ve tried everything else. Why don’t you try Him? So that’s on the spiritual level.

Cal Thomas:

Secondly, I’d reinforce what I said earlier about education. We’ve got to get our kids out of these failing government schools. Here are the Democrats who are doing a reverse of George Wallace, who stood in the schoolhouse door in the 60s to keep African-Americans out. Now the Left is standing in the schoolhouse door to keep them trapped in and keep them addicted to the Democrat Party. Let my people go! Let them out. Let them get a real education, which is the foundation of success.

Cal Thomas:

So those two things, I think, are the only thing that’s going to turn things around. And if not, we are going to go the way of every other nation, and nothing is going to stop it.

Charles Mizrahi:

God bless you. You should keep this fire going for the next 50 years. You’re amazing. You call it as you see it. This book, America’s Expiration Date… Definitely get it. Agree or disagree with it. At least it’ll start you thinking.

Charles Mizrahi:

Cal, where can my listeners hear about read more about what you’re writing every day?

Cal Thomas:

Well, I’m in about 300 newspapers around the country. And if I’m not in yours, contact the editor and ask them to carry me! Otherwise, they can go to my website, CalThomas.com and help cure their insomnia by reading all of my columns and radio transcripts.

Charles Mizrahi:

I don’t think so. I mean, if anything, it’ll get your blood boiling. Because you speak from the heart, and you don’t have a you don’t have an ax to grind here. You care deeply about this country, and you see where it’s going. And it’s troubling. So, I just like that you’re a pragmatic thinker. You’re not looking for any quick solutions. You’re looking for a solution that works for everybody.

Cal Thomas:

I’d like to pass on to my children and grandchildren what was passed on to me by my grandparents and parents—who went through a Great Depression and a world war and survived. And they survived because of the very values and virtues that are being torn apart in the country right now. And if you don’t have those in place, then what do you have?

Charles Mizrahi:

Yep. The amazing Cal Thomas. Thank you so much. I greatly appreciate you being on the show, and I wish you many, many more years of success. And keep fighting the good fight, brother. You’re doing fantastic.

Cal Thomas:

Thank you, Charles.

Charles Mizrahi:

Thank you, Cal.

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