By Rich Kozlovich
History is a funny thing. We have always heard how history keeps repeating itself and how we keep missing the message. Why is that?
Because we don’t study history, and when we do, we don’t really study history, because most of what we get in school is very basic and the real lessons that need to be learned can’t be learned without the details and nuances as a result most of it would qualify as propaganda. Finally, as a society, we just don’t seem to care! We think it’s just a bunch of old dusty records that don’t really apply to our time. Yet we know that history does repeat itself constantly. The names, places and events might be different, but the underlying principles are all the same. The patterns of human conduct constantly repeat over and over again. Why? Because the one thing all of humanity has had in common all though the all of the ages is that we are human. We are still motivated by the same wants, needs and desires that all men have been motivated by forever.
What has this to do with the pest control industry you may ask? Every person or corporation involved in the pesticide manufacturing and application industries is one of the three following people. Neville Chamberlain, Winston Churchill or Vidkun Quisling.
Arthur Neville Chamberlain, 1869-1940
Chamberlain was a Rugby educated member of the British upper classes and had been in government all of his adult life starting in 1911 as a member of the Birmingham city council later becoming Lord Mayor.
His career continued in an upward direction from that time on, serving in the national government in various capacities facing the rough and tumble of parliamentary British politics becoming Prime Minister in 1937.
He demonstrated good leadership skills and in spite of being a member of the conservative party he was more of a socialist in temperament than a conservative, instituting many reforms that were very popular. The outcome of his plans never came to fruition as WWII broke out in 1939.
Chamberlain, in his defense, was a good administrator and in many ways a mirror image of his countrymen when it came to another war. WWI had so horrified the British people that they wanted peace at almost any cost. After the bloodbath of 1914-1918 they would have done almost anything to avoid another war. Unfortunately Hitler was not of the same mental bent. Chamberlain was a pragmatist. His “general policy of appeasement” was perfect for Hitler’s general policy of conquest. Hitler had an agenda. Dealing with someone with a definite agenda of conquest by going along to get along was a system for disaster for the British.
Chamberlain is best known for sacrificing the part of Czechoslovakia known as the Sudetenland to Hitler in the Munich Agreement. He came back to England waving the agreement in the air for all to see declaring “peace in our time”. The Czechs (you know the people actually impacted by the agreement) didn’t think much of his peace. Nor did that peace of appeasement last long. March of the same year Hitler invaded and conquered the rest of Czechoslovakia. Finally after the invasion of Poland Chamberlain declared war. It was too late.
Finally in 1940 one of his friends delivered a devastating speech in the House of Commons quoting Oliver Cromwell speaking to the Long Parliament “You have sat too long here for any good you have been doing. Depart, I say, and let us have done with you. In the name of God, go.” His career as Prime Minister was over.
Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill, 1874-1965.
Churchill, like Chamberlain was of the British upper classes, only at a higher level since he was a descendant of the first Duke of Marlborough. His early years could only be described as unimpressive, especially his school work, which caused his father Lord Randolph Churchill to consider him a “disappointment”.
He was however an accomplished swordsman and found his niche in the British military. As an unabashed self-promoter he did everything he could to be in every war the British conducted during the years before WWI. Captured during the Boer War he became a hero back in England because of his escape from the Boer prison camp.
His career in government began in 1900 taking on serious positions of responsibility. He too survived the rough and tumble parliamentarian political system of the British Empire. His military mentality was displayed during a number of upheavals in England at that time. He was more than willing to do what most would be aghast at today, including his willingness to use machine guns on striking miners.
Before and during the appeasement period promulgated by Neville Chamberlain, Churchill was virtually a lone voice “crying out in the wilderness” about the dangers of Hitler’s rearmament (forbidden by the Treaty of Versailles). When WWII broke out he was appointed First Lord of the Admiralty (the same job he had in WWI) and became a prominent figure in the government since during the “Phony War” most of the action was at sea.
Finally he became Prime Minister in 1940. Most will remember the “I have nothing to offer you but blood, toil, tears and sweat” speech Churchill made to the British people. This was a direct response to the go along get along crowd criticizing him for not fixing the war immediately. This was in spite of the fact they created the problem and had no solutions themselves. This speech quieted them for the remainder of the war.
Whatever else Churchill did (his life was filled with decisions that most of us would consider disturbing) he knew whom his enemies were and what needed to be done about them. This was an issue in which he was irritatingly vocal about to a country that was remarkably uncaring of his views. Irritated and uncaring until the war broke out.
Vidkun Quisling, 1887-1945.
The son of a Lutheran minister he was born into one of Norway's oldest families. He graduated from the Norwegian war academy as the best cadet ever, and later rose to the rank of Major, even serving as defense minister in the early 30’s. He was also a brilliant mathematician. His early adult years were spent in relief work in Russia during the time when Stalin was starving his people to death, and later even received the Commander of the British Empire for his promotion of British interests in Russia.
In 1933 Quisling formed the Norwegian Fascist Party with himself as the Norwegian equivalent of Der Fuhrer.
Although he performed a coup d’tat setting up a Nazi style government just as Hitler was invading Norway, he did so in hopes that not all the power would go to the Germans. His government only lasted 5 days. The Germans were willing to let him act as a figure head that could be useful.
Although he considered himself a patriot, doing what was best for the people of Norway (and himself), the Norwegians considered him a traitor. He was executed for treason in 1945.
Who are you?
Are you the ultimate pragmatist willing to go along to get along? Always believing we can come to some accommodation with the environmental activists by appeasing them just a little more? Or perhaps you're the hardheaded realist who knows who his enemies are and what needs to be done about them, fully aware that appeasement isn’t the answer. Then that leaves the foolish traitor who is at one with the activists and believes that the offerings of the activists is a good thing for everyone and actively support their projects?
Make no mistake about it - we are all one of these individuals. Like Hitler the activists have an agenda and that agenda is an agenda of conquest. The elimination of the pesticide manufacturing and application industries is their goal. Here are the choices. Appeasement, fight the good fight or treason.
Who are you really?