on notice

Let me first say this: I’m neither shocked nor angry that a Russian military intelligence unit was offering/paying a bounty to Taliban-linked militants for attacking and killing coalition forces — including U.S. and British troops — in Afghanistan. After all, the US did essentially the same thing during the 1980s when Russia invaded Afghanistan. It’s ugly business, to be sure, but war is never nice; paying proxy troops fight the enemy has been a common facet of warfare since…well, since war was invented.

Don’t get me wrong. It may be a common practice, but it’s loathsome. Governments should still object to it. Back in March, when Comrade Trump was first briefed by US intelligence officials about these bounties, it was his sworn duty to confront Comrade Putin — to raise holy hell and demand that it stop. According to sources reported in both the Washington Post and the New York Times, a number of responses were discussed at that briefing, “includ[ing] sending a diplomatic communication to relay disapproval and authorizing new sanctions.”

Instead, there’s been no response. None.

Well, that’s not entirely accurate. There’s been no official US response. There have been several unofficial Trump responses. Since March — since he learned about the bounties — Trump has 1) invited Putin to visit the US and stay at a Trump-owned property, 2) decided, after a call with Putin, to pull US troops out of NATO partner Germany, 3) suggested Russia should be reinstated in the G7 summit (a suggestion which other G7 nations soundly rejected), 4) refused to implement measures to combat Russian interference in the coming presidential election, 5) worked with Putin and Saudi Arabia’s Mohammed Bin Salman (who, let’s not forget, had a Washington Post reporter kidnapped, killed, and dismembered) to raise oil prices (which benefitted US oil companies while raising prices of gasoline for consumers), 6) had his Department of Justice drop criminal charges against the Russian citizens and firms that criminally interfered with the 2016 election, and 7) had his DOJ drop charges against his former National Security Advisor who’d twice pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his interaction with Russian intelligence services.

He knew, while he was saluting these future military leaders, that Russia had placed a bounty on the lives of their brothers and sisters-in-arms serving in Afghanistan — and he’d done nothing to stop it.

But about the Russians paying bounties to kill US troops? Nothing. Worse still, Comrade Trump stood on a stage in front of graduating cadets at West Point and said this:

“You became brothers and sisters pledging allegiance to the same timeless principles, joined together in a common mission to protect our country, to defend our people, and to carry on the traditions of freedom, equality, and liberty that so many gave their lives to secure. You exemplify the power of shared national purpose to transcend all differences and achieve true unity. Today, you graduate as one class, and you embody one noble creed: Duty, Honor, Country.”

He went on to promise this: “[L]et our enemies be on notice; if our people are threatened, we will never, ever hesitate to act.”

Our enemies ARE on notice. If the enemy is Russia, we will absolutely hesitate. We will protect our country…except from Russia. We will defend our people…except from Russia. Our military will embody a noble creed of duty, honor, country…except when Russia is involved.

Trump was right about one thing in his West Point speech. He mentioned “the power of shared national purpose” and “the traditions of freedom, equality, and liberty.” To our everlasting shame, the President of the United States doesn’t share that national purpose or honor those traditions.

Comrade Trump has betrayed his oath of office, he’s betrayed the US military, and he’s betrayed the people of the United States. He’s done it knowingly, he’s done it willfully, and he’s done it with the tacit acceptance of a complicit Republican Party.

They all need to feel the consequences in November. They all deserve to bear the consequences after the election.

a few random thoughts

— Grotesque. That’s probably the best term to describe the appalling events surrounding Comrade Trump’s photo-op. The modern definition of ‘grotesque’ connotes something that’s distorted and unnatural in shape or size, something abnormal or incongruous, something hideous, ugly, but oddly compelling. The term carries slightly different meanings in art and literature, but the general idea is the same. It comes from the Latin grotta, referring to a cave, and was originally used to describe uncouth paintings discovered on the walls of excavated Roman ruins.

“…and a matching face mask with tiny metallic stars.” Accessorizing the police state.

I came across ‘grotesque’ yesterday morning in an opinion piece by a WaPo fashion writer. She included descriptions of what the participants of the photo-op wore. Ivanka: “black cropped pants and blazer…a very large white handbag…a matching face mask with tiny metallic stars.” AG Barr: “slack-jawed in an open-collar shirt, no tie. His jacket was open.” Press secretary McEnany: “a closefitting double-breasted blazer with gold metallic buttons and skinny trousers. She was perched atop a pair of stiletto pumps.” But she ends with this astute observation:

The picture he orchestrated shows no hint of a commander in chief rising above or binding up anything. The photograph doesn’t convey power or competence. From every angle, in every iteration, it’s an image of a whitewashed group turning a deaf ear to a country convulsing over racial injustice.

— This reminds me. I’ve reached a point at which it’s difficult for me to watch US network television shows. It’s not so much that the shows are bad, but that almost every woman actor in a major role looks like a model. European television tends to cast actors who look like real people. It makes television more believable (which, I admit, is ridiculous). Why can’t American television cast actors based on their acting ability instead of on their appearance?

— On Tuesday, Congressman Steve King of Iowa was defeated in a primary race by an equally feral Republican who is canny enough NOT to say the stupid shit out loud. Somebody on Facebook noted the “competition for dumbest man in Congress just fell off a few levels.” Which made me think of Louie Gohmert, about whom I’ve written before.

Louie Gohmert (R, WTF, Texas), the stupidest humanoid in Congress.

I once devised a Gohmert Stupidity Scale to describe Republican stupidity. It was based on the Richter Scale for earthquakes. For example, a Gohmert 2 event would denote a minor stupid GOP action that would be felt slightly by some people, but cause no damage to buildings. A Gohmert 5 tremblor would be felt widely, causing damage of varying severity to poorly constructed social structures. Zero to slight damage to all other social institutions.

Trump’s photo-op was a Gohmert 8 event. Widespread major damage, traditional social structures likely to be destroyed. Moderate to heavy damage even to sturdiest disaster-resistant social institutions. Felt across extremely large regions.

— I’ve heard this story from a number of different sources over the years. I’ve never researched it, so I don’t know if it’s true or if it’s an urban myth but I think it’s revealing regardless. It’s about the last time the Insurrection Act of 1807 (the Act Trump has threatened to use) was implemented. That was in 1992, the Rodney King riots. Some nearby US Marine units were ordered to accompany LAPD officers on their calls. One police officer (with a pair of Marine riflemen) responded to a domestic disturbance call. As they approached the house, they heard a couple of shots fired. The police officer pulled his sidearm and told the Marines, “Cover me.”

And here’s the problem. To the police officer, ‘cover me’ means ‘draw your weapons and be prepared in case you need to use them.’ But to a Marine, ‘cover me’ means laying down a barrage of covering fire to allow their squadmates to advance. Which is what they did. They started shooting the shit out of the house. Luckily, nobody was killed, but it shows one of the many problems of having military personnel try to do a policing job.

— I’ve been thinking a lot about moral courage lately. Or the lack of it. I’m absolutely certain there are people in the Trump administration (and in Congress) who know Trump is corrupt, inept, and generally unfit to serve as POTUS, but refuse to act. That’s moral cowardice. I’m glad that Gen. James ‘Better Late than Never’ Mattis finally spoke up, but I wish he hadn’t waited until things got this ugly. The time to do the right thing is when you recognize it’s the right thing to do. Mattis resigned, but sat quietly until yesterday.

Compare him to US Navy Capt. Brett Crozier, who was relieved of his command of the USS Theodore Roosevelt after writing a letter asking for help regarding the safety of his crew during a Covid-19 outbreak. He knew when he released that letter that he was ruining his career, but it was the right thing to do for his crew. So he did it. He didn’t wait until the death toll on his ship had hit a critical stage.

Served in both World Wars, went to prison rather than name names during communist frenzy. He’s buried at Arlington National Cemetery.

And I think about Dashiell Hammett and his civil rights and anti-fascist activities in the 1950s. He’d been subpoenaed to testify about a list of contributors to a bail fund (it was used to bail out suspected communists). Hammett refused to supply any information, and was found in contempt of court. He did six months in a federal prison rather than reveal the names of contributors. Prison, Lillian Hellman said, “had made a thin man thinner, a sick man sicker.” Hammett’s health never recovered.

Two years later, Hammett was called before the House Un-American Activities Committee and again he refused to cooperate, knowing it might send him back to prison. He later said, “I don’t let cops or judges tell me what I think democracy is.” That’s moral courage.

— As I write this, we have 109,204 confirmed Covid-19 deaths in the United States. The actual number of Covid-19 deaths is undoubtedly higher. There were 1134 new confirmed deaths yesterday. Despite the fact that a thousand Americans are dying every day, Covid-19 is largely being ignored by the Trump administration. Trump is bored with Covid-19. Besides folks were mean to him about it.

— That’s it. Random thoughts. Wash your hands. Wear a mask. Don’t be a dick.

it’s not funny anymore

Maybe it all comes down to this: Donald Trump is afraid of being laughed at. Maybe the underlying motive for much/most/all of his most astonishing, reprehensible behavior is just that he’s terrified of being embarrassed, of being publicly humiliated. Of being laughed at.

Take yesterday’s appalling photo-op. Throughout much of the day a big chunk of the online world devoted itself to mocking and laughing at Trump for turning off the lights at the White House and hiding in a basement bunker because angry protesters were at his doorstep. For example:

Trump drowned in scorn for turning off White House lights as if he ‘ran out of Snickers’ on Halloween.

Trump’s response? A short stupid speech followed by a long stupid walk for a photo-op. But that photo-op was made possible by his order to send uniformed goons to bully and beat and pepper spray peaceful protesters. It wasn’t just a photo-op; it was chest-thumping. It was a ‘show of strength’ by a coward entirely lacking in real strength. It was Trump saying, “Who’s hiding now, bitches? Who’s laughing now?”

Preparation for Trump’s photo-op.

He’d offered that same stop-the-laughing prescription to US governors earlier yesterday during his conference call. He said:

“It was incredible what happened in the state of Minnesota. They were a laughingstock, all over the world. They took over the police department. The police were running down the street, sirens blazing, the rest of them running, it was on camera. And then they wiped out, you probably have to build a new one. I’ve never seen anything like it and the whole world was laughing.”

The whole world, laughing. That’s the most humiliating thing possible. The fear of derisive laughter has been a constant theme in the Trumpverse. Back in 1987, when Trump first publicly considered running for president, he took out full page adverts in the New York Times, the Washington Post, and the Boston Globe saying, ‘The world is laughing at America’s politicians as we protect ships we don’t own, carrying oil we don’t need, destined for allies who won’t help.’

The whole world, laughing at Trump.

There’s reason to believe Trump actually decided to run for president after the 2011 White House Correspondents’ Association dinner, in which he was the butt of jokes from both the MC Seth Meyers (“Donald Trump said recently he’s got a great relationship with ‘the blacks.’ Unless the Blacks are a family of white people, I bet he’s mistaken”) and, worse, President Obama (“[J]ust recently, in an episode of ‘Celebrity Apprentice’ — at the steakhouse, the men’s cooking team did not impress the judges from Omaha Steaks. And there was a lot of blame to go around. But you, Mr. Trump, recognized that the real problem was a lack of leadership. And so ultimately, you didn’t blame Lil Jon or Meatloaf. You fired Gary Busey. These are the kind of decisions that would keep me up at night”).

0230, back in 2014 — a genius at strategy and winning.

During his presidential campaign Trump often railed about the US being laughed at. NATO was laughing at us, he said. China, laughing at us. OPEC, the European Union, Japan, the Taliban, Mexico, ISIS, Russia — all of them, laughing at us. All that laughter would stop, he claimed, once he was elected president.

Trump bring shame to the Bible.

It hasn’t, of course. The laughter has increased. At first the laughter was because Trump is a buffoon. In the diplomatic world, he was laughed at because he’s an uncultured lout who’d weaseled his way into power. In the realm of domestic politics he was laughed at because he’s a pompous jackass who lacks even the most basic understanding of governance. The laughter never stopped, but now it’s often tinged with anxiety.

That anxiety is justified. Yesterday’s scene could have come from some absurdist comedy routine. The most irreligious president ever, moments after calling himself “ally of all peaceful protesters,” had police forcibly remove peaceful protesters (including members of the clergy and the press) from a public space in order to pose awkwardly in front of a church, holding a Bible, which he’s almost certainly never read and doesn’t believe in. Afterwards, he literally had men with riot shields line up so he could walk through them like some conquering hero in a Roman triumph. There’s some dark comedy in that moment — or there would be, if it wasn’t real.

Nobody there to whisper “Memento mori” in his ear.

The fact is, we have valid reasons to be nervous. Because 1) Trump is afraid, and 2) he has power, and 3) he’s willing to abuse it, because 4) Republicans in Congress lack the integrity and patriotism to oppose Trump’s lunatic abuse of power, and 5) some military leaders are apparently willing to give illegal orders and 6) some military personnel are apparently willing to follow illegal orders (as evidenced by the use of military helos last night to intimidate and harass protesters).

It’s crazy that we have to start asking ourselves questions like: Will some governors actually follow Trump’s demand to activate National Guard units to ‘dominate’ the ‘battle space’ of American cities? Will Trump actually send US military troops to ‘impose order’ in cities in states that have refused to activate the National Guard? Will military leaders be willing to order those troops to fire on civilians? Will those troops actually follow such orders?

The answers to those questions scare the hell out of me.

This shit just isn’t funny anymore. It turns out, it never was funny. We just didn’t know.

shrieking rage and frustration

Every morning it’s the same damned thing. Get up, check the perimeter, feed the cat, make coffee, read the news, try to decide if Comrade Trump is driven more by an undifferentiated infantile need to be the center of attention or by a massively corrupt desire to feed his own self interests. Or if he’s just completely fucking nuts.

It’s dark and cloudy out this morning. Looks like a storm is coming. I should leave soon and try to get a walk in before it hits.

The news this morning is largely about Comrade Trump being pissed off. He’s pissed off at U.S. Jews who didn’t/won’t vote for him, accusing them of being either stupid or traitorous (although it’s unclear whether he believe they’re betraying him, the U.S., or Israel). He’s also wildly pissed at Denmark, not just because they won’t/can’t sell him Greenland, but also because the Danish government mocked his desire to buy an autonomous state and its entire population.

On the other hand, Comrade Trump is pleased as punch (tangent — where the hell does that expression come from? Pleased as punch?) with a conspiracy theorist who said — and I swear I am NOT making this up — that he’s “the greatest President for Jews and for Israel in the history of the world, not just America, he is the best President for Israel in the history of the world…and the Jewish people in Israel love him….like he’s the King of Israel. They love him like he is the second coming of God.”

You guys, I actually don’t know how to respond to shit like this. I mean, sure, I’ll mock it and make fun of him, but Jesus suffering fuck, I just want to step out onto the deck and shriek my rage and frustration at…at I don’t know who or what. It’s almost enough to make me want to believe in god or gods so I’ve got something to shriek at.

I mean, how the FUCK did this guy ever get elected? (And yes, yes, yes, I know the answer to that, but how the FUCK did this guy ever get elected?) He’s an absolutely horrible human being. He’s corrupt, he’s cheap, he’s got no integrity, he lies about anything for no reason, he’s delusional, he’s gauche, he’d be amoral if he understood what morals are. He doesn’t read, he doesn’t listen to music, he knows nothing about art. He’s got no conscience, no respect for anything, no empathy, no patriotism, no compassion, no courage, no principles, no honor. He’s got no friends.

Let me say that again. HE’S GOT NO FRIENDS. Comrade Trump is arguably one of the most powerful people on the planet, but nobody cares enough about him as a person to tell him he’s got toilet paper stuck on his shoe.

Fuck. It’s raining now. It’s gone really dark outside. There’s thunder. I can see lightning in the distance. Fuck fuck fuck. I won’t be taking the walk I really need to take in order to calm the fuck down.

I don’t know…maybe this is the perfect time to step out onto the deck and shriek my rage and frustration. If you’ll just excuse me for a moment…

my satire compass done broke

The ‘patriots’ of FreeRepublic are unhappy, and they want folks to know about it. Those spoiled, obnoxious kids with their weird hair and their African boogie-woogie music and their total lack of good manners marched yesterday, demanding that politicians pay attention to them. Kids these days, I declare.

“This is all too organized. I have little doubt that the recent school shooting and possibly the Vegas shooting were false flag operations. You don’t put these events together on short notice.” —  bk1000 (I stand with Trump)

Well, now I’m confused. Apparently the people who successfully implemented two false flag mass murders, resulting in 75 deaths and 438 wounded aren’t organized enough to put together a march in support of their false flag operations. Man, this false flag stuff is hard.

“Many of those killed were 14 or 15 years old. How many freshmen and sophomores would a junior or senior even have met in a large high school?” — Bob

Sure, Bob, that makes perfect sense. These kids must be frauds, because most of them probably weren’t close friends to the ones who were killed. Probably. And c’mon, why would anybody grieve over the deaths of folks they don’t know that well? Unless, of course, those folks are pre-embryonic blastocysts. Why won’t anybody speak for the pre-embryonic blastocysts?

“I attended the great 9/10/09 Tea Party march in DC against Obola and all he stood for. We had 1,700,000 attendees and, by pure, polite numbers alone, shut down the DC Metro. Then, afterwards, we cleaned up our own mess.” — Libstripper

Yeah, okay. The great 9/10/09 Tea Party march was held on 9/12/09, but let’s not pick nits. And that 1.700,000 people who attended? The two main event organizers — the National Taxpayers Union and FreedomWorks — estimated the crowd size to be between 200,000 (FreedomWorks) and 800,000 (NTU). The public information officer for the DC Fire Department acknowledged the crowd was “in excess of 75,000.” But hey, nits for the picking, right? On the other hand, it’s been reported that there was far less trash left behind than you’d expect from 1,700,000 protesters. So there’s that. Thanks, Obola.

“It does have the look of being manufactured all the way back to the shooting itself. How many opportunities for law enforcement were there to stop that nut? This looks media generated.” — virgil

Well, virgil is clearly on to something here. Law enforcement must be in on the false flag operation because they had too many chances to stop the shooter but didn’t. Also? If law enforcement hadn’t been so distracted by the fake news Russia-Trump-Russia investigation, they’d have seen the shooter was dangerous. Also too plus? The school resource officer was a coward who could/should have stopped the shooter but didn’t because…because…wait…oh, because it was a false flag operation to distract people from the Russian investig…wait…okay, it was because…you know, maybe I’ll come back to this after I’ve had my meds.

George Soros overseeing a false flag operation to destabilize Trump just like Pol Pot, probably.

“A little too convenient that Hoggboy was an aspiring cub reporter and Baldy was the schools resident LGBTQWERTY activist.” — digger48

Seriously. The only thing more convenient would have been if this entire event was a Soros-funded attempt to disarm citizens and eventually create a dystopian state and eventually commit genocide on the middle class using malcontents like Pol Pot used the peasants in the Khmer Rouge.

“A Soros-funded attempt to disarm citizens and eventually create a dystopian state and eventually commit genocide on the middle class using malcontents like Pol Pot used the peasants in the Khmer Rouge.” — sumuam

Fuck me.

Okay, maybe it was actually a setup from the gitgo by Democrat Party Congresswomen, Debbi Wasserman Schultz, Frederica Wilson and Congressman, Ted Deutch, in cahoots with the Broward County Public Servants & Police Sheriff, Scott Israel, etc. to make POTUS, Trump look horrible while killing the Second Amendment.

“I have believed this was a setup from the gitgo by Democrat Party Congresswomen, Debbi Wasserman Schultz, Frederica Wilson and Congressman, Ted Deutch, in cahoots with the Broward County Public Servants & Police Sheriff, Scott Israel, etc. to make POTUS, Trump look horrible while killing the Second Amendment. It failed, but, the murders did not.” — JLAGRAYFOX

Damn it! These fuckers make satire impossible.

 

hell, i’d chip in to help buy them a cape

This could be an excellent time to be a Republican in Congress. No, really, I mean that. Right now, today, there’s a powerful need for a Republican hero. Somebody to step up and say something like this:

“I voted for President Trump, but his firing of the Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation — at this particular time, under these particular circumstances, during this particular investigation — unfortunately demands the appointment of a special investigator.”

So simple. And no matter what happens, the Republican who said something like this would come out of it with that new hero smell. If Trump ended up being impeached and convicted (sorry…had to pause a moment to relish that thought), that Republican would be lauded for doing his or her duty, for standing up for Truth, Justice, and the American Way. And if Comrade Trump somehow skated, that Republican could always say he was confident the truth would come out and the president would be vindicated. It’s a win-win situation for any Republican, regardless of whether it was done out of a sincere belief in the integrity of the government or from a completely cynical desire to manipulate the system.

But what are we getting from Republicans instead?

— Ds were against Comey before they were for him. — John Cornyn, TX
— I am thankful for his service to our country and am hopeful our President will select an independent-minded person to serve as the head of our nation’s premier law enforcement agency. Our justice system is the foundation of our republic. It must be both respected and fully worthy of our respect. Trey Gowdy, SC
— The FBI Director serves at the pleasure of the president. Under these circumstances, President Trump accepted the recommendation of the Justice Department that the Director lacked the confidence needed to carry out his important duties. — Chuck Grassley, Iowa
— I am troubled by the timing and reasoning of Director Comey’s termination. I have found Director Comey to be a public servant of the highest order, and his dismissal further confuses an already difficult investigation by the Committee. — Richard Burr, NC
— President Trump made the right decision to relieve FBI Director James B. Comey of his duties. — Ron DeSantis, FL
— The president did not fire the entire FBI. He fired the director of the FBI. And any suggestion that this is somehow going to stop the FBI’s investigation of the attempts by the Russians to influence the elections last fall is really patently absurd. — Susan Collins, ME
— Regardless of how you think Director Comey handled the unprecedented complexities of the 2016 election cycle, the timing of this firing is very troubling. Ben Sasse, NE
— I’ve spent the last several hours trying to find an acceptable rationale for the timing of Comey’s firing. I just can’t do it. — Jeff Flake, AZ
— We wish him the best. … It’s a decision the president’s made and we’ll go from here. — Marco Rubio, FL

Granted, a few Republicans are ‘troubled’, which is…precious. But c’mon, Jello has more backbone than most of these people. However, if just one or two stand up, they’ll become heroes to moderate Republicans, who might just come out of hiding and try to cast off the chains of their oppressors make the Republican Party safe for folks who aren’t totally bughouse rational people.

It could happen. It worked for our guy.

 

hmmmm dammit

You were warned. Don’t say you weren’t.

When martial law is imposed in These United States, after the government has destroyed all communication systems through an electromagnetic pulse generated by detonating a nuclear weapon in orbit, and the gay-raped corpses of disarmed Christian patriots are stacked liked cord wood in freezers in the basements of Wal-Mart stores, and the Obama Muslim Extremist Army seizes control of the American Southwest (with the assistance of Chinese Marxist troops) in order to prevent those states from exercising their right to engage in treason by seceding from the Union — when that happens, don’t you come crying to me.

Jade Helm taking over the goddam streets!

Jade Helm — assault on goddam American streets!

You had your chance to do something about it. But now it’s too late. Jade Helm has begun. America as we knew it (and we knew it as white, Christian, Republican, totally fucking hetero, with pick-ups from sea to shining sea, did I already say white, and steaks the size of the passenger door off a ’63 Ford, with none of that homo pussy vegan shit) is dead and gone. Or soon will be.

Jade Helm -- assault on goddam all-beef patties!!

Jade Helm — assault on goddam all-beef patties!!

Sure, they say it’s just an ‘exercise’ and they say the ‘exercise’ isn’t scheduled to begin until 15 July, but a patriot on FreeRepublic has reported the invasion has already begun.

Three unmarked military helicopters just flew at tree top level over our house. We live north of Dallas in the burbs. hmmmm

Hmmmm, indeed.

Jade Helm -- assault on American goddam highways!!!

Jade Helm — assault on American goddam highways!!!

In fact, it appears the Obamanistas began softening up targets in Texas a few weeks ago, using the High Frequency Active Auroral Research Program to initiate severe weather, disrupting the daily lives of innocent God-fearing heteroTexans. Intellihub (also known in the patriot community as the ‘Civilian Intelligence Agency’) has reported:

Speculation and actual evidence has been released in the last two days that has many believing that Texas is under attack with weather manipulation technology.

Not just speculation, you guys! Actual evidence! And it has ‘many’ believing in weather warfare. What…you’re skeptical? Intellihub can refute your skepticism:

[W]e know that weather warfare is an absolute, 100% proven fact

There you go. Absolute 100% proven fact. You can’t argue against that. As the patriots of FreeRepublic would say, hmmmm. Right?

Jade Helm -- assault on decent Americans by goddam ObamaDrone!!!!

Jade Helm — assault on some decent Americans (and a negro) by goddam ObamaDrone weather-fucking machine!!!!

You were warned. But no, you were too busy watching girls play some foreign game with a ball using only their feet. C’mon, America! Balls are meant to be thrown and caught using the goddam hands God gave you. Now it’s too late. There’s only one thing left to do.

Jade Helm -- America's only hope: God, groceries, and guns.

Jade Helm — America’s only hope: God, groceries, and guns.

Go see Dan.

 

neither shall he eat

Seriously, just what the hell is wrong with conservative Christian Republicans? Why are they so hostile and angry and mean-spirited?

It’s not because they’re conservative; I know people who are politically conservative, but who are also rational and thoughtful. It’s not because they’re Christian; I know a lot of Christians who are caring and loving and compassionate. And it’s not because they’re Republicans; I know many Republicans who understand that governing a nation as complex and diverse as the United States requires a certain amount of compromise.

But it seems when you combine conservatism, Christianity, and Republican ideology, some sort of toxic reaction occurs. It’s like Bruce Banner becoming the Hulk — if the Hulk was capable of hypocrisy.

Stephen Fincher - conservative Christian Republican

Stephen Fincher – conservative Christian Republican

This is Stephen Fincher, a conservative Christian Republican from Tennessee. In a speech arguing against providing the poor with food assistance, he recently recited the following from 2 Thessalonians:

He who does not work, neither shall he eat.

When Fincher refers to ‘He who does not work’ he’s talking about the poor. He’s apparently under the impression that if the poor are necessarily lazy. If they had more incentive to work — say, starvation, for example — then Fincher apparently feels they’d get off their indolent asses and get a job. If he’d taken the time to study the situation — if he’d done his own fucking job — Fincher might have understood that most of the people in the U.S. who receive food assistance do work. But because so many of those jobs are low-wage jobs (thanks to members of Congress like Fincher who fight against raising the minimum wage), and because so many of those low-wage jobs don’t include health care (thanks to members of Congress like Fincher who oppose universal health care), and because so many of those workers are single mothers who need affordable day care in order to work those low-wage jobs (and thanks to members of Congress like Fincher, affordable day care isn’t so affordable any more), because of all that, food assistance is necessary for a lot of people.

Vladimir Ilych Lenin - not a conservative Christian Republican

Vladimir Ilych Lenin – not a conservative Christian Republican

Fincher, by the way, isn’t the only politician to have used 2 Thessalonians to support his political ideology. So did Vladimir Ilyich Lenin. During the Russian famine of 1918 Lenin also recited that same Biblical verse. Lenin, however, was referring to the capitalists and the wealthy who live off of the labor of others. He argued that the early stages of a communist revolution required ‘He who does not work’ to shed his expensive suit and tie and pick up a shovel, and labor alongside the workers who made him rich.

To be fair to Stephen Fincher, he isn’t entirely against government assistance. He owns a farm (on which, by the way, other people do the work while he’s in DC doing the heavy lifting for Congress). Last year Fincher received more than US$70,000 in direct government subsidies. This is money given directly and automatically to farm owners, regardless of need, even if the farm isn’t producing crops that year. The subsidies go predominantly to the largest and most profitable farm operations, rather than to small family farms. Since 1999, Fincher has received about $3.5 million dollars in direct government subsidies.

Conservative Christian Republican

Conservative Christian Republican

Let me put that in perspective. The $70,500 that conservative Christian Republican Stephen Fincher received in 2012 is nearly double the median income of Tennessee households. The average annual food assistance grant to poor Tennesseans is just under $1,600. The government gave Fincher about 43 times that much money just for owning a fucking farm. And yet he feels $1,600 is too generous for the working poor.

Tell me, what’s conservative about that? What’s Christian about that? What’s Republican about that? I’d really like an answer to that question.