The `great white hope?’ Behind the white nationalist robocalls for Trump in Iowa

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Good morning Austin:

William  Johnson lives on a ranch near Los Angeles with horses, ducks and chickens, and various stone fruit he grows, including pomegranates, olives and persimmons.

William D. Johnson

He is also a devoted white nationalist/separatist.

Here, from his dossier with the Southern Poverty Law Center:

William Daniel Johnson, a Los Angeles corporate lawyer, is an uninspiring but determined white separatist. As early as 1985, Johnson proposed a constitutional amendment that would revoke the American citizenship of every nonwhite inhabitant of the United States. A quarter century later, in 2010, he was still actively supporting white nationalist causes, serving as chairman of the racist American Third Position political party (renamed American Freedom Party in 2013), established the prior year. The party wants to run racist candidates nationwide.

The SPLC will now have to add to Johnson’s file that he is the guy who in 2016 produced and paid for white nationalist robocalls that every Iowan with a landline will receive at least once between now and the Feb. 1 caucuses, promoting Donald Trump for president.

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In a press release yesterday, Johnson refers to Trump as “the great white hope.”

Here is the call Iowans are receiving.

And here is the text of the call, on which three persons – Rev. Ronald Tan, Jared Taylor and Johnson – speak sequentially.

The American National Super PAC makes this call to support Donald Trump.  My name is Reverend Ronald Tan, host of the Christian radio talk show program, For God and Country.  First Corinthians states:  God chose the foolish things of this world to shame the wise and God chose the weak things of this world to shame the strong.  For the Iowa caucuses, please support Donald Trump.  He is courageous and he speaks his mind.  God Bless. 

I’m Jared Taylor with American Renaissance.  I urge you to vote for Donald Trump because he is the one candidate who points out that we should accept immigrants who are good for America.  We don’t need Muslims.   We need smart, well-educated white people who will assimilate to our culture. Vote Trump. 

I am William Johnson, a farmer and a white nationalist.  Support Donald Trump.  I paid for this through the super PAC.  Telephone (213) 718- 3908.  This call is not authorized by Donald Trump.

In yesterday’s press release, Johnson also announced that:

Des Moines Radio Group, a major media player in Iowa with nine major Iowa radio stations is beginning to air pro-trump radio shows in the month of January to urge voters to caucus for Donald Trump on February 1, 2016.  The radio show, For God and Country, is hosted by Filipino American minister Ronald Tan and co-hosted by William Daniel Johnson, chairman of the white separatist political party, the American Freedom Party, formerly known as the American Third Position.

But, after news about the robocalls broke and spread, the Des Moines Radio Group yesterday canceled broadcast of six shows of For God and Country on Praise 940 radio, and returned to Johnson his check for $2,100.

Here is one of the pre-recorded shows that would have aired.

And here is a second show that has already been recorded, and will be broadcast elsewhere, but not, as of now, in Iowa.

I talked to Johnson yesterday, and he explained what he is up to and why.

I was one of the earliest contributors to the Trump campaign.

But the Trump campaign indicated that they were self-funding and didn’t need or want contributions.

They put out a press release that Trump is funding his own campaign with his – get this – his vast resources. He’s such a blowhard.

So, instead, Johnson formed the American National Super PAC to promote Trump.

Of Trump, Johnson said:

I’ve known about him for 25, 30 years. My wife, she came to me, she was in love with Donald Trump and she said, `Listen to what he’s saying about the Mexicans on the border.’ And, up to that time, I didn’t really like Donald Trump. In fact I kind of disliked him, but then he said the stuff about the Mexicans coming in, the Muslims coming in, and my wife was just praising him up and down, so then, I began to think this guy is the real deal and this slowly kind of changed over the last four or five months to now where I really like him.

This guy’s as close to a nationalist as we’ve got.

The thing that I’m pleased with him is that he does not back down.

Like just the other day there was some sort of peaceful Muslim lady standing up (at a Trump rally) and saying, `This is what the face of a Muslim looks like,’ protesting in silence very peacefully, and people were yelling at her, `Do you have a bomb? Do you have a bomb?’ So he kicked her out. And she was saying, `This shows the hate of people for the Muslims.” And he said, “No, you’re the ones that hate.” And he never apologized for anything he said. That’s so refreshing and so unique.

A normal politician would have apologized.

I like very much what he’s saying and what he stands for and mostly, l I like the fact that he doesn’t back down.

To a degree, Johnson said Trump reminds him of Ron Paul, who he supported in the past, though Paul distanced himself from Johnson after Johnson had a big fundraiser for Paul at his home in 2007. (see coverage here and here an here.) Johnson said Paul distanced himself, and then apologized to him for distancing himself, and then redistanced himself.

Only Trump, unlike Paul, doesn’t feel obliged to do any distancing and redistancing.

The robocalls blanketing Iowa are costing Johnson only $8,000, which seems to me remarkably cheap, and, in terms of the publicity he is receive, an absolute bargain.

But, does Johnson think that his explicitly “white nationalist” radio ads will actually help Trump?

I want to present to everyone that the white race is going to die out if we don’t do something.

Will it hurt Donald Trump? Nothing hurts Donald Trump and what I do won’t hurt and it might help. But it doesn’t matter whether it hurts or helps. I’ve bot to get the message out that these mainstream Democrats and mainstream Republicans are helping to destroy our country.

When white nationalists got behind Ron Paul there was a lot of legitimate criticism of him, much more criticism of him than Donald Trump.

Granted, Donald Trump is not a white nationalist and some of his views are dramatically opposed to white nationalism – for example he is for a strong military and continued Republican interventionism, whereas white nationalist support George Washington’s advice to not get involved  foreign entanglements. So we fear that Donald Trump needs to be schooled more on foreign entanglements, and there are other areas he is not strong on, but overall he is the best candidate a nationalist could have for a long time.

I am doing this is an independent person who cares about this country>

Instead of wringing my hands about the direction of the country, I’m doing something. I sleep better at night because I’m doing something. Every time I do something I write it down in my Bible and then when I get really old I’ll give it to my grandkids and say, `Here look, I tried, don’t blame it on me.’

Times have never been worse, they’ve never been better. Our backs are against the wall. I think the white race will wake up.

We need successful professional people standing with their hands on their hips, saying, `I’m a white nationalist and I’m proud of it.’ I  think that will turn the political tide. I want people to know I’m proud of my political views.’ And that will help I thinks soften some of the criticism of other people when they begin to think like us. That’s my calling, just to be upfront about it.

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The white race has been subject to anti-white propaganda for at least 50, probably 60 years, so there is a lot to overcome.

At least they will hear it.

Johnson said it is even better when no one his home to receive the call because then it ends up on voicemail and gets shared with friends neighbors.

As for the radio shows, I asked Johnson what the Rev. Tan, a Filipino-American living in Los Angeles, had to do with white nationalism.

“I called Reverend Ron and asked him your question.  This is what he said:  “I support the stand of the American Freedom party on the platform of the Constitution and conservative family values.”

And, For God and Country is his show.

When I asked Johnson how long he has held his views on race, Johnson, 61, said that In high school in Eugene, Oregon, “we had to pick a presidential candidate to write about. I was the only person in my class who picked George Wallace.”

It should be noted that while he is backing Trump, Johnson’s American Freedom Party has its own candidate for president, Robert Whittaker.

His slogan: “Diversity is the code word for white genocide.”

The SPLC describes Whittaker as “a curmudgeonly segregationist with a history of drug abuse.”

Though he claims on his blog to have been the message man in the Reagan administration responsible for crushing communism, bringing down the Berlin Wall and saving the Hubble Space Telescope, Whitaker is seen by many in the movement as a hard-drinking though harmless, grandfatherly Forrest Gump.

James Edwards, host of the racist “Political Cesspool” radio show, wrote, “The next time anyone talks with Bob, ask him about the time we closed down that bar in Charleston.” To his disciples, though, Whitaker is nothing short of a propaganda “genius,” a word that can be found more than 600 times on his blog.

“There is not a modest bone in my body,” Whitaker wrote in 2004. “I AM a genius. I was born with one hell of a brain, and I scare our enemies because I am so smart I can laugh them to shame. I am at so high a level that a PhD or a big-time news anchor doesn’t mean a thing to me.”

A far-right propagandist for more than a half-century, the former economics professor and Reagan appointee to the Office of Personnel Management has been linked to radical, often racist, populist campaigns for most of his career. He once claimed to have a swastika poster on his wall when he was young in protest of desegregation. In fact, his advocacy of segregation and racist ideology seems rooted in his opposition to America’s early civil rights struggles.

Johnson said Whittaker will stay in the race even if Trump is the Republican nominee.

He wants to keep Donald Trump honest.

I asked Johnson what he thinks about Ted Cruz.

He has some good points but he’s a Cuban. I’m a little bit hesitant to support a Cuban.

The Trump campaign has not commented on Johnson’s robocalls.

I also talked with Jared Taylor, the founder and editor of American Renaissance last night, who I have talked to and written about over the years. I last interviewed in June, after the church shooting in Charleston, S.C.,  for a First Reading because, as I wrote:

Taylor was back in the news when he emerged as the designated spokesman for the Council of Conservative Citizens – a like-minded if rougher-around-the-edges white nationalist organization that he has been a member of for the last 20 years. The Council made one of its occasional forays into national consciousness with news that Dylann Roof’s apparent manifesto suggested that it was the Council’s website that had “informed” his thinking on race and propelled him toward the massacre at the Charleston, S.C., church of which he stands accused.

 

 

Al Jazeera America

(Al Jazeera America)

“Donald Trump,” Taylor has written,”may be the last hope for a president who would be good for white people.”

From our conversation last night:

To me the wonderful effect of Trump is to reopen all these questions that the smug liberals had considered closed for all these decades – the whole question of who do we want to come to America, do we dare make a choice, do we dare express ourselves and have a preference. I think single-handedly he has done in just a few months what scores of us have spent decades trying to do – reopen this question. I think it’s absolutely marvelous.

Whether he himself has any kind of really developed racial consciousness, frankly I doubt it. I think it’s just instinct, he goes on his instincts, and his instinct, like most white Americans, is that he prefers European civilization. But whether or not once he was in office he might start  saying things about how he likes being around white people or that there wasn’t anything wrong with an immigration law that was designed to keep America majority white, whether he would say things like that, I have absolutely no idea.

On the prospect of Trump facing Hillary Clinton in debate.

I can just imagine the kind of havoc he would wreak with her in debates. On the one hand. I cringe to think of the ungentlemanly attacks he might make in today’s vulgar society, but an ungentlemanly attack might be a success, I don’t know.

I said that talking to some conservatives in Iowa last week, I got the feel that they would love for Trump to be elected and see what happens, but are a bit skittish and would like some kind of money-back-guarantee if Trump, once elected, swings wildly in another direction and doesn’t do what they think and hope he is going to do.

I am convinced that what we do have a money-back guarantee on is this whole question of illegal immigrants. I think it would be impossible for him to go back on that, and I think his heart is actually in it, unlike some of these Johnny-come-latelies who are talking tough on illegal immigrants. That is clear, that this was the wind that pushed him out in front and he genuinely feels that way. And for him to double back on that, that would be absolutely unforgivable.

Jared Taylor

Jared Taylor

He’s got to have a wall and he’s got to deport the illegals. If he doesn’t do that, well then, my gosh, he’ll be a laughingstock.

Wouldn’t Ted Cruz be every bit as hard-line as Trump on immigration?

Do you think he would build a wall and deport 13 million illegals? I don’t think he would. I don’t think he has the heart for it. It’s an incredible thing to actually send people back across the border. That’s a very tough thing to do. You have to have grit, determination, you to be prepared to take New York Times stories and CBS stories of all these crying families that are being separated. I just don’t think Ted Cruz – Ted Cruz is too conventional, he couldn’t put up with that.

It’s the imitator I don’t trust. I trust the originator.

The other thing that I think people like about Trump is that he is unpredictable. People are tired of these blow-dried, cut-out candidates who have to take five polls before they decide what to say about something. There’s a genuineness about Trump. Sometimes he says things that make us effete types cringe a little bit, but there’s something refreshing about a guy being such a natural.

Of the robocalls potential impact:

I really don’t think that it can hurt Donald Trump. Can it help? I’m not so sure about that either, but it once again circulates an aspect of the question that I think needs to be circulated. It publicizes the whole demographic implications of what Donald Trump is talking about  and the kind of revolution he’s effected in the national conversation on this.

On how he describes himself.

I’ve started using Identitarian.

I don’t like the term white nationalist because people think of Basque nationalists and Kurdish nationalists, throwing bombs. I don’t like that.

White advocate, that’s a term I sometimes use. It’s very frustrating not to have an expression that I can settle on as one that’s comfortable. The word ‘racist,’ that word can absolutely not be rehabilitated. It comes  with just too much more opprobrium.

Maybe, in years to come, a Trump Republican.

For someone to buck the zeitgeist so consistently and so powerfully as he has done, I think it probably is unprecedented, for someone to have so successfully frustrated and baffled all the people who tell us what to think.

This utter flouting of convention, spitting on orthodoxy, I think it’s simply fantastic.

He could be washed away in the Iowa caucuses, his campaign could completely fizzle out, and he would still have achieved an enormous amount.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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