Friday, January 15, 2021

 How J. Reuben Clark Became Enmeshed with Anti-Constitution Globalists

The story of how J. Reuben Clark came to realize the magnitude of the threat to the US Constitution (and the freedoms that that document purports to protect) was put forth by W. Cleon Skousen. An Internet search eventually led me to the following fascinating details.

In 1916, Willard Straight of J. P. Morgan & Company (now JPMorgan Chase—currently the largest bank in the US) came to J. Reuben Clark and made him an amazing proposition: Would Clark be willing to partner with Straight in promoting the interests of a grand conglomeration of the world’s most powerful industrialists—and thereby help the US win World War I?

Skousen recounted the conversation between Straight and Clark as follows.

"Well," he said, "where would we have our office?"

“Oh, in New York."

"Where in New York?"

"Well, we have a skyscraper there, and we'll be on the lower floor. Everything above you will be our client."

"Just one client?"

"Yes, just one client."

"What's it called?"

"The American International Corporation, the first international conglomerate of industrial power that was ever organized in the United States."

"What are we going to do?"

"Well, we're going to use our money that all our people have, and we're going to start buying up the industries and get things kind of organized together."

Among others, members of the American International Corporation included the following industrialists and ‘luminaries’.

Frank A. Vanderlip (1864-1937), Founder of the American International Corporation (AIC) and president of National City Bank of New York (now Citibank) from 1909 until 1919. The National City Bank of New York was the largest bank in the US at the time.

•George Herbert Walker (1875-1973), who according to Wikipedia was “a director of the W.A. Harriman & Company; Harriman Fifteen, American International Corporation (AIC); Georgian Manganese Corporation; Barnsdall Corporation; American Ship & Commerce Corporation; Union Banking Corporation; G.H. Walker & Company; Missouri Pacific Railroad; Laclede Gas and the New Orleans, Texas and Mexico Railroad.” Walker was also the grandfather of George H. W. Bush and grandfather of George W. Bush. Walker served as Director of the AIC. (Dates unknown.)

Pierre S. du Pont (1870–1954) who according to Wikipedia was “an American entrepreneur. He was president of the E.I. du Pont de Nemours and Company from 1915 to 1919, and served on its Board of Directors until 1940. He also managed General Motors for some time.” 

Percy Rockefeller (1878-1934), founder of Owenoke Corporation and sat on the boards of many large industrial corporations including Anaconda Copper, Bethlehem Steel, Biltmore Hotels, National City Bank of New York (now Citibank), New York Edison, and Western Union. He was a nephew of John D. Rockefeller, founder of Standard Oil Company.

J. Ogden Armour (1863-1927), of Armour & Company, who according to Time magazine once said, "I don't suppose I shall ever be happy. Perhaps no one ever is. But the thing that would make me happiest just now would be to know that I could get roaring drunk and wander about the [Chicago] loop for two days without anyone paying any attention to me."

James J. Hill (1838-1916), of Great Northern Railway. Wikipedia quotes Hill as saying, "Give me snuff, whiskey and Swedes, and I will build a railroad to hell."

•Otto Kahn (1867-1934), of Kuhn, Loeb and Co.,

For an in-depth explanation of the significance of this group, see Dr. Carroll Quickly’s book, Tragedy & Hope, or W. Cleon Skousen’s book, The Naked Capitalist.*

J. Reuben Clark was considered the foremost American expert on international law at the time. He had law offices in both New York City and Washington D.C. He accepted the offer and with Straight and the American International Corporation. He was highly effective in helping AIC and its partners buy up their competition. Clark felt this was a worthy effort. It would position America as the world's strongest economic power. Constitutional freedom would spread globally.

By 1923, however, J. Reuben Clark realized that he had been working for a group of men whose true objective was to undo the Constitutional government of the United States. They, like their man Woodrow Wilson, preferred a dictatorial government. They chose war and crisis as their most effective tools. They reasoned that during war and crisis people will tolerate centralized, dictatorial mandates and authority.

In a speech in the Mormon Tabernacle in Salt Lake City in 1923, J. Reuben Clark said of the Constitution, "I'll tell you, it is in jeopardy. I see forces rising all around us today that have as their goal and objective, the destruction of the very thing that made the United States the greatest nation in the world!"

During the next few years, J. Reuben Clark returned to the US State Department where he worked as Assistant Secretary of State. Later he was appointed US Ambassador to Mexico by President Calvin Coolidge.

In 1933, J. Reuben Clark received a letter from the First Presidency of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints at his office in Mexico City. They requested that he serve as counselor to President Heber J. Grant of the Church. This request was perhaps the greatest surprise of his life. He had never been a leader of any kind in the church. He’d never served as a stake president or even as a bishop. In fact, he had only infrequently attended church meetings during most of his adult life because his law practice and other professional responsibilities usually required him to work long hours seven days a week.

But J. Reuben Clark accepted the call, resigned from being US Ambassador to Mexico, and relocated to Salt Lake City where he served as one of the two counselors in the First Presidency of the Church for 28 years—longer than anyone else had ever served in that position.

Cleon Skousen published an apocryphal story that he picked up from people who were closer to J. Reuben Clark than he was. Here is Skousen’s account.

"J. Reuben Clark said to President Grant, 'Don't you make these choices by inspiration?'"

"President Grant said, 'Yes, we do.'"

"J. Reuben Clark said, 'I can understand why a lawyer of international prominence and so forth, like myself, may add to the prestige of the church. But I don't know what I an doing here. I am doing things that I never was trained to do. I'm instructing people. I feel very inadequate.'"

"Well, according to the story that I was told, President Grant said, 'That's not why you were chosen as a counselor.'"

"'Well, why was I chosen?'"

"'You were chosen because the Constitution of the United States is in jeopardy. The church needs to be aroused, the country needs to be aroused, and we've got to start training our people to defend that Constitution before it's shredded and lost.'"

"'Oh, really?!'"

"'You are the best Constitutionalist in the church.'"

J. Reuben Clark spent the rest of his life serving in the First Presidency of the Church. Whenever he felt it appropriate he spoke out in support of the US Constitution and the righteous principles embedded in it. He was sometimes accused of bringing politics into the Church. In fact, he was once booed as he began a speech at the University of Utah. Of that incident, Skousen says that Clark just smiled at them and said, “Well, I don't mind you calling me old-fashioned, because I am…I don't even mind you calling me antediluvian…but…I am a little sensitive about you calling me pre-historic!" The audience laughed and then sat back and listened.

J. Reuben Clark died in 1961 at the age of 90. Ten years later the new law school at Brigham Young University was named for him: The J. Reuben Clark School of Law.

J. Reuben Clark left a great and noble legacy and one that graduates of that law school—and one that all lovers of our divinely-appointed and Constitutionally-affirmed freedoms—would do well to honor and to emulate.

#     #     #

*I was a student of Cleon Skousen at Brigham Young University while he was writing The Naked Capitalist. I had the privilege of speaking with him one-on-one about this book in his office during that time. The Naked Capitalist should be considered a must-read by those who want to know about a major threat to Constitutional government.

Orem, Utah—15 January 2021—©2021 Daniel Kemper Lubben

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