Sunday, August 1, 2010

Harry Reid or Ezra Taft Benson: Choose Ye This Day

Harry Reid made some comments at a speech he gave at BYU as well as a press conference following his speech.  I have taken the following summary paragraphs from a Deseret News article.  I have included the link so you can read the article in its entirety.

Some past prominent LDS Church leaders wrongly pressed conservatism on church members, U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said Tuesday during a press conference at Brigham Young University.

 The Nevada senator attacked President Bush and evangelical Christians while saying members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints need to worry less about abortion and gay marriage and more about health care, global warming, education and jobs.

Reid said Ezra Taft Benson, active in very conservative politics before he became a president of the LDS Church, and Ernest L. Wilkinson, the president of BYU from 1951-71, were among past church leaders "who were very right-wing people politically."  "Members of the church are obedient," Reid said, "they are followers in the truest sense of the word, and I think they've taken members of the church down a path that is the wrong path.

"I think people in the church have to understand there are issues more important than abortion and gay marriage."

Reid also told reporters the Republican Party has been driven by evangelical Christians for 20 years. "They are the most anti-Christian people I can imagine, the people from the Christian far right.

Harry Reid's Comments

Harry Reid believes in government control over health care, education, jobs, and in a climate exchange bill.  Harry Reid believes in socialism which essentially is communism.  He has stated that people in the church, such as Ezra Taft Benson, have led church members down the wrong path in proclaiming the evils of socialism and communism.  Ezra Taft Benson was a prophet.  The majority of the remarks he made pronouncing the evils of socialism and communism took place in General Conferences.  The Lord has told us:

D&C 1:38 What I the Lord have spoken, I have spoken, and I excuse not myself; and though the heavens and the earth pass away, my word shall not pass away, but shall all be fulfilled, whether by mine own voice or by the voice of my servants, it is the same.

The following is from Ward Teachers Message, Deseret News, Church Section p. 5, May 26, 1945 and was also included in the Improvement Era, June 1945 (which was the official church magazine before the Ensign).

"Any Latter-day Saint who denounces or opposes whether actively or otherwise, any plan or doctrine advocated by the prophets, seers, revelators' of the church, is cultivating the spirit of apostacy. One cannot speak evil of the lord's annointed... and retain the holy spirit in his heart. This sort of game is Satan's favorite pastime, and he has practiced it to believing souls since Adam. He {Satan} wins a great victory when he can get members of the church to speak against their leaders and to do their own thinking."

"When our leaders speak, the thinking has been done. When they propose a plan--it is God's Plan. When they point the way, there is no other which is safe. When they give directions, it should mark the end of controversy, God works in no other way. To think otherwise, without immediate repentance, may cost one his faith, may destroy his testimony, and leave him a stranger to the kingdom of God."

The following is from LDS President Marion G. Romney (of the first presidency), quoting LDS President (and prophet) Heber J. Grant "Conference Report" Oct. 1960 p. 78.

"Always keep your eye on the President of the church, and if he ever tells you to do anything, even if it is wrong, and you do it, the lord will bless you for it but you don't need to worry. The lord will never let his mouthpiece lead the people astray."  (quotes courtesy of
We all have our free agency, so we must choose for ourselves whom we will serve.  Do we want to follow the ideas outlined by Harry Reid, U.S. Senate Majority Leader?  Or would we rather follow the teachings of Ezra Taft Benson, past Prophet of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints?  They support conflicting ideologies.  Either socialism is good, or it is the devil's plan.  We must choose.  I choose Ezra Taft Benson as well as our current prophet and all of our past prophets.


  1. "Harry Reid believes in socialism which essentially is communism"

    Wow that was amazing, In one sentence you make this wild statement that Br. Reid believes in socialism which is not true and then claim that socialism is the same as communism, which is also not true. Statements like that make you sound like McCarthy.

    As for President Benson,
    If you had studied the life of Br. Benson at all you would know that this statement is true. His own son was a member of the John Birch Society. Br. Reid is correct Ezra Taft Benson was very right wing. Br. Reid is only trying to remind us that as Mormons we could "worry less about abortion and gay marriage and more about health care, global warming, education and jobs." and still be good members. While many of us might disagree with some of his priorities. We can't disagree that they are all worthy of our concern.

  2. Ed, thank you for taking the time to read my post. To clarify, my statement that “socialism is essentially communism” should have been ascribed to Ezra Taft Benson.

    You are correct that it is a tricky thing to state for a complete surety whether or not someone believes in socialism (although I really do believe that Reid believes in socialism). It would probably be more correct to say that Harry Reid supports and advances socialist ideas and the communist agenda. With the signing of Obamacare and the new financial regulation bill, the U.S. federal government now controls over 70% of our economy (Beck). The federal government owns 61% of GM. Harry Reid has supported all of these things. Reid also supports social security, Medicare/Medicaid, and all of our other socialist programs. Socialism is simply government control over our economy.

    As for McCarthy, the Venona Code intercepts that were released from the KGB archives in the 1990’s proved that McCarthy had indeed correctly identified many communists in the U.S. government. He was finally vindicated. If by “I sound like McCarthy” you mean that I have correctly identified a socialist in the U.S. government, then I stand guilty as charged.

    I am not disputing that President Benson was “right wing”. I don’t prefer this term. I like to use the term conservative. This is what I would label myself. This argument gets to the essence of my post. If President Benson was “right wing”, then Harry Reid is “left wing”. President Benson spoke of his “right wing” policies in general conference addresses when he spoke of the evils of socialism. I am saying that you must choose one of two things: that either socialism is evil as President Benson and thus the Lord says it is or that it is not. It is not that I don’t care about health care, the environment, education, or jobs, I just believe that using socialism to address these issues is evil. I would guess President Benson cared about these issues as well, but that he also would not have used socialism to combat these issues. My contention is not with what issues people care about, but how they (incl. Reid) want to deal with the issues. I also think that you can be a good church member if you support socialist ideas. (Not you personally, Ed, I mean the general “you”.) You (general) are, however, misguided. You (general) just need to be made aware that these socialist ideas are the plan of the devil (President Benson). Please see my post “The War in Heaven Continues Through Socialism” to see further how socialism is the anti-gospel.

  3. When I said "these socialist ideas are the plan of the devil" (President Benson), I mean that President Benson is to be given the credit for the idea of that statement.

  4. I actually loved your post script comments even more than the post, because you really clarified your sources and explained your logic in depth. It does come down to the question: do you believe a prophet's counsel given in an official church meeting? Or do you believe a church member speaking his own ideas?

  5. "It would probably be more correct to say that Harry Reid supports and advances socialist ideas and the communist agenda."

    Where do you get the "Communist Agenda" from?

    "Reid also supports social security, Medicare/Medicaid, and all of our other socialist programs"

    “socialism is essentially communism”
    And you support President Benson in this statement?

    So if you support Social Security and Medicare then you are a Socialist and if you are a Socialist then you are also a Communist.
    Do I have that right?

  6. Most Americans who support socialist programs are not aware that they are supporting socialism and thus are not socialists. Socialism and communism differ by degree. Socialism is not exactly communism, it is essentially communism. Many resources have exposed the communist agenda. I recommend “The Naked Communist” by W. Cleon Skousen. The main point of my post is that we must all ask ourselves, “Should I follow the counsel of the apostles or lean unto mine own understanding?”, or as Darci put it, the understanding of another church member.

  7. Interesting Post. I assume you know that:
    1. After becoming President of the LDS Church, President Benson's public political comments essentially stopped
    2. It may be a more fair comparison to substitute Hugh B Brown's views. (Which if you have read President Brown's memoir closely parallels Senator Reid's) One can follow Senator Reid AND be following an apostle and member of the first presidency

    1. The last part of 2 is false! You can't follow such as Harry Reid and also follow a prohet of God! It would be like trying to follow God and Satan at the same time! You have to pick one or the other. You can't follow God and mammon according to Matthew!

  8. David - thank you for taking the time to read my post and comment on it. If you find a general conference talk that contradicts President Ezra Taft Benson and instead subscribes to the ideology of Harry Reid, then you will have caught my attention.

  9. Though you posted this a couple years ago, I just came across it. I find it interesting that the two things Harry Reid said we don't need to worry about have both been spoken about in recent conferences. It makes it very clear how wrong he is.