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W. Cleon Skousen : A Giant Has Died
Human Events ^ | Jan 12, 2006 | Mark Skousen

Posted on 01/14/2006 6:03:53 PM PST by logician2u

W. Cleon Skousen died Monday, January 9. Skousen was one of the leading anti-Communists of the day. His nephew, Mark Skousen, editor of the just-released Compleated Autobiography by Benjamin Franklin (Regnery) and editor of the financial newsletter Forecasts and Strategies, has written this tribute about the man he calls “ a giant in the land.”

W. Cleo Skousen: 1913-2006

"There were giants in the earth in those days....the same became might men who were of old, men of renown." (Genesis 6:4)

A giant has died! My uncle Cleon, age 92, died of natural causes Jan.9, 2006. He lived a vigorous life until the last two or three years. Ten years ago he had open-heart surgery, and recently had a pacemaker put in, but he had a keen mind right up until the end.

His official obituary from the family is given below.

For my own part, I owe my uncle Cleon a debt of gratitude on two counts. First, he was like a father to me and my family when my own father, Leroy (his younger brother), died in 1964 in Portland, Ore.. I was only 16 years old, and he left a widow with ten children. Uncle Cleon became a father to all of us, visiting us frequently and taking us places, giving us counsel and blessings as we grew older.

Jo Ann and I took a memorable trip to Israel on one of his unforgettable spiritual highlight in our lives. He gave me a special "father's blessing" near the Sea of Galilee....a blessing I treasure.

Second, uncle Cleon's comments to me about Adam Smith completely changed how I wrote my book, The Making of Modern Economics, the story of the great economic thinkers.

Cleon influenced millions of people's lives, as a member of the anti-Communist movement of the 1950s and 1960s; as a religion teacher and author of the famed Thousand Year books. He wrote over 40 books on political and religious topics. He was an FBI special assistant under J. Edgar Hoover, and chief of police of Salt Lake City, He was founder of the National Center for Constitutional Studies and had a lifelong interest in defending the U.S. Constitution, which he regarded as an inspired document. He was a husband, father, and friend to all, even his enemies when they got to know him.

Fortunately, right before he died, I sent him my latest book, The Compleated Autobiography by Benjamin Franklin, which I compiled and edited. He loved Benjamin Franklin, and he told me just a week before he died how much he enjoyed listening to his wife Jewel reading it to him. (Jewel is indeed a jewel of a wife!)

All over the country, at various conferences, the most frequent question I am asked is: "Are you related to Cleon Skousen?" I always proudly responded, "Yes, sir!" He was a great man--a giant in the land.

Here is the official obituary from the family:

W. Cleon Skousen passed away at his Salt Lake City home on January 9 of natural causes incident to age, just 11 days shy of his 93rd birthday. He was lovingly surrounded by his wife of 69 years, Jewel, and many family members.

Known by millions for his devoted understanding and support of the U.S. Constitution, his love of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, his insights into politics, religion, good government, and human nature, he leaves behind an exhaustive work of scholarship created over three-quarters of a century that covers dozens of specialties. Among the 46 books he wrote are the bestsellers, The Naked Communist, The Naked Capitalist, So You Want to Raise a Boy, The Making of America, The Five Thousand Year Leap, and Fantastic Victory about the Israel-Arab war of 1967. His books on religion, such as The First 2,000 Years, Prophecy and Modern Times, Isaiah Speaks to Modern Times, Treasures from the Book of Mormon, and Days of the Living Christ, reached millions of readers in the Christian, Jewish and Islamic communities. And his speech titled "A Personal Search for the Meaning of the Atonement" is perhaps the most widely distributed audio tape among members and missionaries of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints -- a fact that made him smile in astonishment. "I've had missionaries tell me that speech has been translated into Russian, Spanish, Portuguese, and French, and has been passed around on every continent where missionaries serve."

Skousen served 16 years in J. Edgar Hoover's FBI as an agent and the communications director during the waning years of the gangster era and WWII. He also was the editor of the nation's leading police magazine, "Law And Order." He was a popular teacher of several thousand students at Brigham Young University for 16 years, and a popular speaker across the country where he sometimes gave as many as 300 speeches a year. His devotion to America's founding fathers and the Constitution led to the creation of The Freeman Institute that later became the National Center for Constitutional Studies, an organization through which his speeches and writings educated and united large segments of voters to elect senators, congressmen, governors and presidents who loved the Constitution.

Known for his untiring devotion to principle and integrity, he served as Salt Lake City's chief of police and created what Time magazine called "A model police force."

After Skousen served four years, the city mayor created a firestorm of protest when he fired him on trumped-up charges, an event the mayor later called the worst political mistake of his life.

Warmly embraced with the friendly honorarium "a living national treasure," Skousen and his wife maintained a modest home in Salt Lake City that became a mandatory stopover for any person with political aspirations both in Utah and beyond. Friends and visitors included ecclesiastical leaders of all faiths, politicians from all major parties, students of all ages, and of course, local missionaries every Sunday night.

Skousen was born in Raymond, Alberta, Canada, on Jan. 20, 1913, and was educated in Canada, Mexico and the U.S. He served a two-year mission for the LDS Church at age 17. He earned his doctorate at George Washington University. He and Jewel are the parents of eight children, 50 grandchildren, and 67 great-grand children. He was preceded in death by three brothers and two sisters, his daughter Kathleen, two grandchildren, and one great-grand child. He is survived by his wife Jewel, and children David (Judy), Orem, Utah; Eric (Cheryl), Orem, Utah; Julianne (Glenn) Kimber, Alpine, Utah; Sharon (Russ) Krey, Washington; Harold (Anne), Riverton, Utah; Paul (Kathy), South Jordan, Utah; Brent (Myralynne), West Jordan, Utah.

Funeral services will be held on Saturday, January 14, at Parleys Stake Center, 1870 East Parleys Canyon Blvd. (a block and a half east of Highland High School) in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Friends may contact the family by clicking on contact us at

In addition to editing Forecasts & Strategies, Mr. Skousen is also editor of another Eagle Publishing sister publication, the Skousen Hedge Fund Trader.

TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; News/Current Events; US: Utah
KEYWORDS: anticommunism; cleonskousen; deaths; obituaries; skousen
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The great man's name was W. Cleon Skousen, not Cleo as in the title that Human Events assigned to it. Possibly no one on the HE editorial staff knew of him.

Most conservatives over the age of 40 do, though, and many of us have the utmost respect for him as one of those who kept the flame alive during the darkest years of the '60s when this country's intellectuals were preaching a "merger" between capitalism as practiced in the West and Communism as practiced in the Soviet Union and China. Skousen and a handful of others held fast to the idea that the United States of American was special and should never compromise its ideals of freedom and individual rights, no matter what the rest of the world thought. He sincerely believed that our Constitution was divinely inspired, and that our success as a nation can be attributed to the blessings the Creator bestowed on the Founders as men of wisdom.

May his soul rest in eternal peace.

1 posted on 01/14/2006 6:03:54 PM PST by logician2u
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To: logician2u
Sounds like a great man who lived a full life. RIP
2 posted on 01/14/2006 6:11:12 PM PST by Mulch (tm)
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To: logician2u
It should be noted for passers by that this is the author of the book that contained the list of communist goals that's posted here on FR every other week.
3 posted on 01/14/2006 6:11:23 PM PST by 302damnfast
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Oh, horrors! I shoulda checked the time before I posted.

How can anything like this compete with a football game?

4 posted on 01/14/2006 6:13:25 PM PST by logician2u
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To: 302damnfast
Interesting observation.

Can there be any doubt that those goals are a lot closer to being achieved today than they were in 1963?

The irony, of course, is that the only communists left to celebrate their victory are in Cuba, North Korea and on a bunch of university campuses.

5 posted on 01/14/2006 6:22:06 PM PST by logician2u
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To: logician2u

I was fortunate enough to have met him, He was a friend of my fathers and I took a class from him at college. He and my father were both with the Bureau. He was a very good man.

6 posted on 01/14/2006 7:09:59 PM PST by ghostcat
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To: logician2u

I'm embarrassed to admit I've never heard of him. But that will be remedied shortly. If he was the warrior this encomium presents, he deserves his own niche in the conservative pantheon.

7 posted on 01/14/2006 7:25:00 PM PST by IronJack
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To: ghostcat
Thanks for sharing.

What class did he teach that you took? He was an authority on so many subjects, it could have been about anythinng connected with American history, criminology, the Bible, political sciece.

And I agree he was a very good man. I met him once, too, when I was still in high school.

8 posted on 01/14/2006 7:28:34 PM PST by logician2u
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To: logician2u

I've got one or two of his books,He was a giant.

9 posted on 01/14/2006 7:29:54 PM PST by Boazo (From the mind of BOAZO)
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To: 302damnfast
This man was a genius ahead of his time. As a snot-nosed 6th grader, I read his book The Naked Communist and didn't consider it a particularly difficult book to either read or understand. It's too bad so many of our intellectual class still can't get what Skousen laid out so simply back in the 1960's.

I was surprised to read he was born in Alberta. I wonder if the Canadians claim him or if the family still has any ties there.

10 posted on 01/14/2006 7:30:21 PM PST by Vigilanteman (crime would drop like a sprung trapdoor if we brought back good old-fashioned hangings)
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To: IronJack
No need to feel embarrassed, Jack. Perhaps your paths never crossed, or you may have lived in the wrong part of the country. Out west, Skousen was fairly well-known. His kind of patriotism was, unfortunately, not very welcome in the east for several decades.

We'll have to check the next couple issues of The Weekly Standard and National Review and see how the neos treat his passing. I'm not holding my breath.

11 posted on 01/14/2006 7:35:08 PM PST by logician2u
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To: Vigilanteman; Alberta's Child
We can always ask our resident authority on Alberta.

What say you, Alberta's Child? Have you read Skousen? Does he have family still in Canada?

12 posted on 01/14/2006 7:39:06 PM PST by logician2u
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To: logician2u
There is a sizable number of LDS families living in Alberta, in and around Lethbridge and Cardston, just across the border. By and large they are descendants of colonists sent there by Brigham Young in in late 19th Century.
13 posted on 01/14/2006 7:44:40 PM PST by JCEccles
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To: logician2u

Thanks for the notice. I have numerous tapes of many of his speeches, and never tire of listening. "The Making of America" his book dedicated to the Founding Fathers is a much read study of the Constitution of the United States of America that resides on one of my bookshelves as well as the Thousand Years series. I don't think I know of anyone quite like him. A speaker and writer, I have respected for years.

14 posted on 01/14/2006 7:47:49 PM PST by wita (
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To: Dick Bachert

Sad ping. I know he was a FRiend of yours.

15 posted on 01/14/2006 7:48:00 PM PST by Taxman (So that the beautiful pressure does not diminish!)
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To: logician2u

RIP to a wonderful patriot, with many thanks for his brilliant writings. I attribute my awakening to several of his books which I eagerly read back in the "old days."

He was truly a trailblazer and well ahead of his time!

(BTW, if you have any sons read "So You Want to Raise a Boy." I highly recommend it. Little boys have been under attack since the '60's and he was one of the rare people who predicted the trend.)

16 posted on 01/14/2006 7:52:07 PM PST by Humidston (Two words: TERM LIMITS!)
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To: logician2u
The irony, of course, is that the only communists left to celebrate their victory are in Cuba, North Korea and on a bunch of university campuses.

Oh, there's still a few in various State Legislatures and the House of Representatives.

17 posted on 01/14/2006 7:55:33 PM PST by who knows what evil? (New England...the Sodom and Gomorrah of the 21st Century, and they're proud of it!)
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To: who knows what evil?

No, really?

18 posted on 01/14/2006 8:01:09 PM PST by logician2u
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To: wita

"I have numerous tapes of many of his speeches, and never tire of listening."

Are there copies of those tapes available for sale somewhere? Some are probably in the Congressional Record, are there others?

19 posted on 01/14/2006 9:08:09 PM PST by The Spirit Of Allegiance (SAVE THE BRAINFOREST! Boycott the RED Dead Tree Media & NUKE the DNC Class Action Temper Tantrum!)
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To: logician2u

It was a religion class, on the Bible

20 posted on 01/14/2006 10:02:12 PM PST by ghostcat
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