Voltaire Didn’t Say It
By popular demand: bringing together in one post the facts about my quote, which many falsely attribute to Voltaire
by Kevin Alfred Strom
ABOUT A QUARTER CENTURY ago, in 1993, I said, in my American Dissident Voices broadcast titled “All America Must Know the Terror That is Upon Us,” the following:
“To determine the true rulers of any society, all you must do is ask yourself this question: Who is it that I am not permitted to criticize?”
Since that time, my statement, sometimes an exact quote but more often a paraphrase (and some of the paraphrases are more elegant than my original), has become the stuff of Internet memes, quote collections, graphics, and motivational posters. There are over 926,000 entries for one variation of it alone on Google search. Trouble is, the quote is almost always attributed to the 18th-century French writer Voltaire, and not to me.
(The best paraphrase, I think, is this, which doesn’t at all claim to be a real quote: To learn who rules over you, buy Mel Gibson a drink.)
Looking at online archives, not only of Web pages but of digitized books going back centuries, we find that — except for my use of the statement starting with my 1993 American Dissident Voices broadcast — it does not appear in large numbers until 2012 and not at all before 2007. Even a Jewish scholar, Barry Popik, thoroughly debunked the Voltaire connection in 2012, just as the quote was “going viral.” So it’s pretty clear, even to my critics, that I came up with the idea and the quote — and Voltaire never did.
Now, it’s kind of flattering for my thoughts to be put over the name of the man who said such witty things as “To succeed in the world it is not enough to be stupid, you must also be well-mannered.”
Additionally, Voltaire once wrote to the King of Prussia urging him to abolish Christianity in his domains, saying that it “is assuredly the most ridiculous, the most absurd, and the most bloody religion which has ever infected the world. Your Majesty will do the human race an eternal service by eliminating this infamous superstition… My one regret in dying is that I cannot aid you in this noble enterprise, the finest and most respectable which the human mind can inspire.”
Voltaire is also known for rightly regarding the human races as vastly different. And he once said that Jews “spread an irreconcilable hatred against all nations.”
Well put, and not much to disagree with! So, though I’d like to receive credit for my own work, and though I certainly don’t ever compare myself to him, it does lessen the sting of the misattribution when I am inadvertently equated with Monsieur Voltaire.
By the way, I do not think that I am the first or only person to come up with the central idea of the quote: Any thoughtful person, looking at history, would come to the same conclusion. I believe I’ve read other writers expressing words to the same general effect, and at substantially greater length. But I do deserve credit for whatever pithiness or quotability or gestalt effect my quote has on the reader, and that’s about all I can hope for.
In 2015 the newspapers and wire services were alive with a story about an Australian conservative senator named Cory Bernardi, who had (like thousands of people have innocently done) published the supposed quote from Voltaire — “To learn who rules over you, simply find out who you are not allowed to criticize.” As I’ve said, the quote was actually a paraphrase of something I wrote in 1993. Here’s how The Australian put it:
Cory Bernardi. Normally as reliable as a Swiss clock, the senator tweeted this a few days back: “To know who rules over you, simply find out who you are not allowed to criticise’’ — Voltaire. The answer is pretty obvious isn’t it?” As it transpires, the quote is an adaptation of something said by Kevin Alfred Strom who, as summarised by Wikipedia, is “an American white nationalist, neo-Nazi, Holocaust denier, white separatist” jailed for possession of child pornography…
The Sydney Morning Herald, Britain’s Guardian, and at least a dozen other newspapers published articles about the supposed gaffe, with all of them calling me a “racist,” “neo-Nazi,” “White supremacist,” and the like — and many of them repeating, or even imaginatively expanding upon, the false “child porn” charges the government made against me several years ago.
I immediately wrote a corrective letter to each of the newspapers I mentioned, and a few others, and additionally tried to enter a comment in their comment section if they had one. Here’s what I wrote:
‘I’m Kevin Alfred Strom, the author of the quote.
‘I do oppose the looming genocide of the European race, so, perhaps in the eyes of certain moneyed groups, that is enough to earn the appellation “neo-Nazi.” It’s not a term I’d use.
‘I am not now and have never been guilty of any crime against children, contrary to the utterly false assertions of the Guardian and the Sydney Morning Herald, who actually have so little regard for the truth that they call me a “child pornographer” and even publish a mocking graphic to that effect. As I made clear in open court during my politically-motivated trial, the only thing I am guilty of was having disgusting images planted on my computer by other people — with the collusion of an agent of the rogue US secret police agency, the so-called “Joint Terrorism Task Force,” and a vicious ex-wife who was by her own admission sharing the agent’s bed.
‘My harrowing experience is proof of the truth of my assertion in the quote: I dared to criticize those who “cannot be criticized” — the same ones who are engineering our genocide.’
In no case were my letters or comments published — or even acknowledged.
There is a lesson here.
Whoever hijacked my quote and put it over Voltaire’s signature liked what I was saying. He understood my point. He understood that our secret rulers brook no criticism of themselves or their agenda — without exacting punishment. He wanted to use the quote. But he didn’t dare attribute it correctly. He didn’t dare make his point with a quote from a known “racist” or “anti-Semite,” no matter how good the quote was. He didn’t dare follow my thoughts with my name. If he did, he’d be attacked as being “racist” himself. There might be personal or professional consequences.
So he took my idea and put in the mouth of Voltaire. Funny thing is, Voltaire, free-thinker and honest observer as he was, is as much of a “racist” and “anti-Semite” as I am. But Voltaire has been safely dead for well over 200 years and his contribution to the artistic and intellectual development of our civilization is so great that it will take quite some time for his legacy to be erased, denounced, or censored (as I am sure the Enemies of Life are aching to do). So it was relatively “safe” to quote Voltaire, but unsafe to quote Kevin Alfred Strom.
So this misattribution actually proves my point. Here’s the full quote from my radio program:
“To determine the true rulers of any society, all you must do is ask yourself this question: Who is it that I am not permitted to criticize? We all know who it is that we are not permitted to criticize. We all know who it is that it is a sin to criticize. Sodomy is no longer a sin in America. Treason, and burning and spitting and urinating on the American flag is no longer a sin in America. Gross desecration of Catholic or Protestant religious symbols is no longer a sin in America. Cop-killing is no longer a sin in America — it is celebrated in rap ‘music.’ The degradation of beautiful young girls in disgusting pornography is no longer a sin in America. The killing by the multiple millions of the next generation in the womb is no longer a sin in America. But ‘anti-Semitism’ is the ultimate sin in America. But as things get worse and worse, we are losing our fear of this silly word. We all know who it is that controls the wealth of our nation through their exchanges and counting-houses in New York. We all know who it is that has deformed the minds of two generations of Americans with their television programs.”
Today, even more than in 1993, it is evident that we in occupied America no longer have freedom of speech. It is a “sin” according to the Powers That Be to criticize Jewish power — or even to point out the fact that it exists. It is also a “sin” to oppose or criticize the Jewish agenda, a sin that sometimes has serious personal and professional consequences.
But you know what? — the Powers That Be are losing control of the narrative. Hundreds of thousands of us, even in the face of increasing tyranny, have awakened in just the last few years alone. The Jewish power structure now has no choice but to surrender or to ratchet up their restrictions on free speech and their persecution of free thinkers. They will surely choose the latter. And that will accelerate the awakening. Racially conscious Whites are now more numerous and more vocal than at any time in the last quarter century. I’m proud to be a part of that. It’s a great time to be alive.
The Jewish System tried to destroy me and erase my life’s work — and they failed. Maybe they should work on erasing Voltaire’s works too. After all, he’s the man who said that the Jews “spread an irreconcilable hatred against all nations.” And that really is a quote from Monsieur Voltaire. Take that, Semites!
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