The most frightening fact of the world may be how fake it is

0826-shooter-video-2Like anyone with a social media news feed, I clicked through to find out what the shooting of the Virginia news reporter was all about. And upon first viewing of the video with the gunman extending his arm with gun in hand, my thoughts turned inside out.

“This is fake,” I thought to myself.

And then the video showed shots being fired. And there was no blood, even at close range. Nothing. The manner in which the reporter ran away did not even look real. One has to believe that a heavy pistol like that makes an impact on the body when bullets are fired. Especially multiple bullets. Yet she ran away like nothing was happening. Screams of apparent fear yes, but pain? It just did not sound like that.

And from what anyone could tell, the cameraman did not even make a sound. Nor the woman being interviewed. After the initial scream, we don’t hear a word from her. Not a “Don’t shoot me!” or anything.

So the entire enterprise feels like a fake.

And why so fake?

Virtual realities

There are a ton of agendas potentially linked to this “story” emanating from a seemingly peaceful scene. But that was suspect too. The aerial photos showed the cameraman slumped on the wooden deck, again with no blood around him, in a place isolated from all other public interference. There was no blood to be seen anywhere on the decking at the “murder scene.”

clip-shootingFrankly, it all had the look of a video game.

There have been other shootings in American history that were fake in other ways, but with real consequences. The assassination of President John F. Kennedy comes to mind. The story the American people were fed was obviously fake. Millions of words have since been spilled about that incident, and one conclusion has not been reached. But there is considerable consensus that there was more than one shooter, perhaps as many as four. In other words, it was a conspiracy to kill.

So there are conspiracies to fake a killing, and conspiracies to cover up actual killings. And why should that be?

Who killed JFK?

Let’s consider the Kennedy assassination first. There were plenty of people with motives, who hated Kennedy and all that he stood for. The Mob didn’t like him. That’s a bad start for a peaceful ending. The CIA didn’t like him, and didn’t differ that much from the Mob in many respects. Kennedy was planning to eradicate the CIA and go after the Mob. But take notice that forms of both the Mob and the CIA still survive while Kennedy and his brother are long dead.

There was Lyndon Johnson, who by many counts was a pretty evil character and a political assassin at the very least. Tons of people around the career of LBJ were shot and killed, including his own sister. Yet he lived to become President even though Kennedy was shot. JFK did not like or trust LBJ. The feeling was mutual.

John_F_KennedySo the Kennedy tale holds all sorts of conspiracies withing in. And before she passed away, even Jackie Kennedy whispered some things about what she thought happened, yet the family records remain sealed away.

Perhaps there are people who think America can’t really handle the truth. Some would hate to think that the government or the people associated with it (the two can be very different) are capable of such murderous intents.

It’s the government

Yet there are plenty of people who hate and distrust the government as an entire worldview. Some fantasize the government is going to impose martial law and come take their guns away. That’s a favorite meme of the radical fringe, is it not? There are militias formed in all corners of the country, practicing just in case the troops come to take over the land.

Then there are people who think that it’s the gun nuts who are the real danger, and that guns are the real problem in America.

Convergence of craziness

These stories all converge in one place when a shooting occurs like the apparent murder of a news reporter in Virginia. It was all bundled together with headlines about an angry black man shooting a pretty white reporter. These conveniently serve as a potential conflagration to the race war going on in the United States and also an indictment of the gun violence afflicting black culture and society as a whole.

Should we now mention that America has a black president and an election coming up in 2016? Truly, from the moment Obama was elected there has been thinly disguised racist opposition to his position in life. And is there now a coincidence to the idea that a fair-skinned black man assailed a pretty white reporter, and that the response from family and friends all feels like very bad acting? It all feels calculated to enrage the radical fringe in some way or another.

In fact there’s a whole meme surrounding “false flag” events. It can seem like craziness. But it’s all about confusing agendas on purpose.

Confusing agendas

There are some who conspire to suggest that stories such as the Virginia news reporter slaying are designed to do two things; raise ire against black citizens and simultaneously push for more gun control. It all gets confusing pretty fast, to the point where it can be difficult to tell the real news from the fake.

Then we have CNN and FOX and MSNBC all chiming in with their angles and spins, and pretty soon the temptation is to just turn off the “news” and see what the hell happens next. Yet the nearly fake incidents just seem to keep coming, all smacking of psychological operations staged by someone to accomplish some agenda, or confuse that of their opposition.

Point blank

If the recent shooting was real, there are still some patently suspicious elements to it construction. The gunman’s cell phone footage and the seeming lack of awareness by the cameraman and the two people doing the interview is incredulous. That scene in which the shooter holds out the pistol with his cell phone perfectly composed behind it feels completely bogus yet calculated to create fear. He stands there forever, pointing and muttering the word “bitch.” Frankly it feels like a badly made B movie scene. If this were stocked on the shelves of the former Blockbuster video rental chain, it would have been on a back shelf for sure.

Scope and scale 

Admit it, the events of the last 15 years alone have stretched your credulity on every front. But because so much of our reality comes to us through video screens, at the same scope and scale, it is hard to discern what feels real or not.

The unreal scope and scale of events on 9/11 floored the American populace and the silence of the skies for days afterward felt weird and unreal. We were fed the story about Al Qaeda hijackers, and heard the tale of “Let’s roll” chronicling heroes on board the plane that ditched into the Pennsylvania field. Again, it all felt constructed to rally Americans in a war against the unknown enemy, especially Muslims.

For effect, even the Pentagon itself was struck, and no military planes were sent out to intercept a jetliner from striking the main building of our national security. Is our country really that inept? Does our mighty military suck so badly we can’t even protect our own Pentagon?

The more the “facts” rolled in, the more they seemed staged to create an effect. But of course America then rolled off to war in Iraq, a country that had nothing to do with the events of 9/11, and the news media cheerleaded all the way.

Skeptics

FlagWaiverExcept there were some of us who sat back and wondered what was really happening with 9/11. We might be the same group of people who don’t buy the line we were given on the Kennedy assassination. Either way, it adds up to a worldview that is really chilling. The most frightening fact about the world may be how fake it really is.

Think about Nazi Germany. From inside that country people had little idea there were millions of Jews being massacred within their nation’s borders. The signs of such murderous intents were all there, with Hitler’s Mein Kampf with its anti-this and anti-that rhetoric. The man had major compensatory issues going on, and perhaps an evil dose of self-denial at some level. Some call him the anti-Christ. Well, if so, the anti-Christ is dead.

At least we think so. Where’s the body?

World orders

Hitler was no stupid form of crazy. He knew how to manipulate people, or at least hire people to do it for him. From such conspiratorial desires to rule the world emanate powerful and savage attempts to control people and eradicate others.

If one man was capable of such fury in history, why not others? Why not believe there are people just as willing to “sacrifice” a few lives in order to corner the market on political power? After all, while Hitler was ravaging Europe, Stalin was no bargain either. Nor Mussolini. All were fascists of a sort, and throw Japan into the mix at the time as well. Hitler was not alone in history with his conspiratorial rage against others. There were plenty of Roman Emperors that were just as powerfully devious and evil as evil can be. We do ourselves a disservice by even branding Hitler the worst of all villains. It diminishes our ability to conceive the nature of the evil still in operation to this day.

Every major country has its own ugly history of imperialism and international manipulation to account for. America prided itself on rescuing the Jews in World War II, yet our own nation’s history includes a massive genocide on Native Americans. Such is the fakery of American Exceptionalism. We also embraced slavery for a time. So it’s no surprise that we act like savages in the greater world as well.

Tortured souls

Look at our behavior after we took over the nation of Iraq. We tortured people in the very same jails used by Saddam Hussein to torture his perceived enemies. We did it indiscriminately as well, with soldiers mocking those they tortured, stacking bodies like abu2cord wood and forcing sexual humiliation upon them. The excuse our government gave at the time was that our torturous ways were the result of a few “bad apples” who got going and could not be stopped.

But we know better, don’t we? With a surly man like Dick Cheney in charge with his “anything goes” approach to governance, we know that they knew back in Washington what was going on. When the photos emerged and it was obvious they were not fakes, the best the boys in DC could do was to claim that the release of those photos was a threat to our national security and the safety of troops overseas. Talk about your ultimate cynical response.

Money talks

There’s just one major problem with that storyline. While we were torturing Iraqis, we were also in the process of privatizing much of the war in Iraq. That meant Dick Cheney’s real issue with the threat to America’s interests was more focused on the outcome of his 141208_fallon_cheneylies_apinvestments with Halliburton, the private mercenary company with which Cheney was long associated. Halliburton made more than $39B on the war in Iraq. Cheney was simply trying to take care of his friends. And his money.

So the war crimes we committed were essentially privatized as well. The war we were fighting in Iraq was a fake from the beginning, constructed from the whole cloth of a pre-existing doctrine for control and manipulation of the Middle East for oil, and more.

Yes, the “fake” war had real consequences, and many people including American soldiers gave their lives to that war. Thousands more were maimed and damaged by the war. Our Congress was fed hurried lies and exaggerations on which to make the decision to support the war, but people with an agenda and without conscience do that without guilt. And for what?

War machines

So that people could make money off the war, which was simply an extension or exploitation of the events on 9/11. The entire enterprise, and that is a word that describes it well, was the ultimate illustration of how fake reasons drive the way the world operates the way it does.

King Romney appears angry with his subjects

It’s all a very old construct in a new set of Emperor’s clothes. Machiavellian intrigue has never abated in this world. The New York Times characterized that fact with this description of Machiavelli’s book “The Prince”… is a manual for those who wish to win and keep power. The Renaissance was awash in such how-to guides, but Machiavelli’s was different. To be sure, he counsels a prince on how to act toward his enemies, using force and fraud in war.”

It goes on to describe how these arts operate: Yet Machiavelli teaches that in a world where so many are not good, you must learn to be able to not be good. The virtues taught in our secular and religious schools are incompatible with the virtues one must practice to safeguard those same institutions. The power of the lion and the cleverness of the fox: These are the qualities a leader must harness to preserve the republic.

And so we see that there are many willing “to be able to not be good.” They pride themselves on employing both the power of the lion and the cleverness of the fox. One thinks of Oliver North orchestrating the sale of arms to Iran to generate money for Contras in Nicaragua. It was a scandal, and yet Oliver North is a star on Fox TV and wanders around the United States giving lectures (including at churches) as if he were a hero for breaching America’s values with his own set of corrupt ideals. These were Machiavellian actions if there ever were such a thing. It was his intent to bend the will of the people to succumb to false truths, even at the expense of the lives of others.

And if such corruption at an international scale can carried out and then admired, why is it unimaginable that similar forces could not conceive and execute the events on 9/11? It is not unimaginable. Nor is it unimaginable that someone could fake a live murder of a news reporter to push gun control, or promote racism, or both at the same time?

At some point it’s not mere conspiracy theory to consider such possibilities, it’s common sense. Evil is one tricky bastard to identify and reveal. It takes courage and conviction in the face of corrupted power to do so.

Power brokers and breakers

Some people will simply do anything to achieve and maintain power. If there’s money to be gained in the process, all the better.

DeerCrowrevSo we must be aware that not everything we see in this world is what it appears to be. There are people who spend all day and all night planning psychological operations to frighten or convince you the world is what they want you to see. It happens from all sides of the political spectrum because that is how all wars of perception proceed. Sometimes people even create chaos against the very thing they would seem to value most, just to paint their enemies in an awful light.

It is also a weapon of misinformation to turn perceptions on the strengths of others into perceived weaknesses. That’s what happened to John Kerry with the Swiftboating treatment he received relative to his service in the military. The goal is to turn the hero into a scarecrow, then knock them down.

Apparent cause

Hence we even find an economic crash caused by the world’s largest financial institutions, only to find none of its perpetrators going to jail or suffer any consequence at all for their actions. In fact all the major financial institutions that caused the crash of 2008 got money thrown at them because they were, to borrow a phrase, “too big to fail.” Talk about your unilateral political euphemism!

The policies favored by President Bush contributed to the recession, and then Bush passed a bill to turn around and bail them out. Then Obama turned his head away from prosecution. Cause and effect? Or just cause and cause?

Cause they can. Cause they will. Cause they do. Cause it makes them even richer. Someone’s laughing all the way to the bank, that’s for sure.

Fake battles with real consequences

On the social front, society is constantly pitted against itself according to categories of race, region and culture. The forces behind all this rancor capitalize on the distraction of the conspiratorial entertainment these hot button issues provide.

jesus-blackOften, when left to their own devices, people of all colors eventually get along fine. Does it matter in the end if Jesus was black or white or Jewish or any color? It doesn’t, yet for centuries the church faked the appearance of Jesus as a principally white man, often with blonde or brown hair because that fit the image of those whom the church favored.

And so, we are seldom if ever left to our own devices. As a result, the American Civil War is still being fought as a clash of races and class. Or the lack of it.

Don’t you see? It’s no coincidence that Lincoln was assassinated after the war was won. Pretty much every time the forces of good seem to have won, including John F. Kennedy, Martin Luther King Jr., or even Ronald Reagan, for God’s sake––the seemingly good people get shot or killed. But is it really just crazy people doing the shooting? Or are we simply led to believe that is the case?

You’d have to be crazy to believe that

How convenient it is to just write it all off as madness. Then the gun lobby gets to claim that it is only crazy people who kill. Never mind the idea that it may be guns themselves that make people have crazy thoughts, and give them the ability to act on them. That’s just crazy talk, right?

590868Granted, people with mental illness owning guns is never a good idea. But the gun lobby refuses to recognize even one gram of complicity in the fact that guns empower everyday, otherwise normal people to have crazy thoughts of power, vengeance and control.

It’s a fact: Guns were designed for killing. What do you think people are going to imagine when they take one in their hands? Target practice. Right.

It’s “just a sport.” Right. But if that’s the case, what is a target? The idea that guns exist just for sport or self-defense is a perverse fantasy. That’s like saying rocket ships are just for joy-riding.

Our culture simply does not reflect that reality. Guns are used all the time in movies and on television programs to kill, and kill righteously. They are presented as a solution to problems that cannot be solved by diplomacy or discussion. They make people into heroes and make heroes into legends. Guns are depicted as an extension of the soul, as if firing a weapon were part of a creed or brotherhood. And indeed, that is how the gun culture behaves.

A religion of guns

Guns have become a religion in America, and we all know that religions are all too happy to kill in order to protect their authority and the social order that sustains them. The National Rifle Association is the church. The NRA is its people.

The gun culture has a creed, and that is the Second Amendment of the Constitution, which reads, “A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”

FIREARMBut the religion of the gun culture in America chooses to ignore the first part of the creed in order to focus on the second half of the statement.  That is, the gun culture hates the part that begins “A well regulated militia…” so that it can lobby for the more selfish aspect of “the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”

There is thus an entirely relativistic conclusion to which so many Americans have now come. They pretend the first part of the Second Amendment does not exist in order to abide by the powerful, yet still relativistic nature of the ‘right of the people to keep and bear arms.’ This is rather like insisting that Jesus is more important than God, and that God has to take a background seat.

That would be a fake religion indeed. And thus we have a fake devotion in America to the real nature of the Second Amendment, which says that guns shall be well regulated.

Infringed

And what about this word, “infringed?” Does that mean no laws at all pertaining to guns, and that people can own what they want, and use them at will?

Well the word “infringe” is defined as follows: actively break the terms of (a law, agreement, etc.)

But the term infringed by itself does not define the nature of the law. It only corresponds to the terms laid out by the government as such laws pertain to guns. Which means, if the government determines that “well regulated” means stricter gun laws, then the second half of the Second Amendment and the right of the people to bear arms is not infringed. Case closed.

You can hear the gun nuts screaming from the rafters of Congress right now. Their reality is however constructed manifestly around an unreality. They’re fakers, in other words, manipulating our Constitution to their own selfish desires.

Top down control

john-boehner-gaveljpg-6706b1f02a6d1dabBut it’s not just gun nuts who push for false interpretations of our Constitution. Crazy thoughts emanate from the top down as well. In fact that’s where so many of them start, because where there’s profit and control to be had, people do crazy things and teach crazy ideologies to get other people to fall in line with their thinking.

In fact that’s how people come to ignore the very real separation of church and state demanded by the Constitution (freedom from religion is guaranteed just like freedom of religion) and call America a Christian nation.

But let’s examine that claim.

We have a right to be suspicious of a Christian following that takes the original goodness of “love your neighbor and help the poor” and turns it into money-making machines for the many false prophets and televangelists who manipulate, cajole and steal (even) from the poor to enrich themselves. Then these wealthy “Christians” invest in politicians that promulgate their power-based ideology, often overriding the personal liberaties of othters in the process. It amounts to a state religion or theocracy at that point, which is the exact opposite to why the national was formed in the first place.

So when these same groups turn around and become political, even to the point of calling America a Christian nation, it is time to call them out as fake on many levels. The non-profit and tax-free status granted churches demands as much, or else they should lose their tax-free status. That is based on clarity of purpose. A church that is faking it as a non-profit, or acting as political entity must be called to account.

Fakes and bakes

gettyimages-461656522-e1436299461791There are so many fakes in the world it can be difficult to tell at all what is real. And if you spend your entire day sorting through the insanity of all that we’re fed, and social media has made it even worse, you can go crazy just trying to figure it out.

The only thing you can do is be on guard and not take the next “news” item at face value. And be careful what you hear a politician say, because they are in the business of manipulating your emotions to gain your vote. Do not accept that everything your government on the right or the left is going to be true, or real, or honest. Because it’s not. Fakery is baked into the manner in which people communicate. It’s like flour in the cake. Or maybe it’s the sugar. It’s hard to tell sometimes.

From the dawn of time

6-SerpentPeople apparently can’t afford not to lie. None of us. From the moment in the Bible when Adam blamed Eve for making him eat of the Fruit of the Tree of Knowledge, there have been men willing to shift blame and try to get off easy for the crimes they have committed or are about to commit.

And whether you believe the Garden of Eden was a literal place or more likely a symbol of innocence, it is gone forever. God made sure of that, and warned that life was going to be difficult, dangerous, deceptive and tough for the human race. Let us not forget that God literally branded us a bunch of fakers and liars. That’s called Original Sin.

But of course some people think God is a fake as well, and with some good reason. It’s pretty hard to reconcile the harsh events from early scripture with all its genocides and warlike character to that of Jesus Christ, whose anger was more righteous and targeted toward a specific group such as the Pharisees. But Jesus was never genocidal like the God of the so-called Old Testament. Jesus never murdered anyone, but was depicted doing miracles of healing instead. Jesus and God feel like two different entities. Who knows what the other member of the Holy Trinity wants? For a religion supposedly based on One God, it seems like Christianity is faking it too. Let’s not even discuss worship of the Virgin Mary. Did she have to fake an orgasm when Jesus was ostensibly conceived by the Holy Spirit?

Critical thinking

All this miraculous stuff begot some skepticism from intelligent people. Even Thomas Jefferson could not bring himself to believe in the miraculous nature of Jesus. He obviously considered all those miracles a bit of fakery. Jefferson went through the Bible cutting out the parts he considered too fake to abide. Yet he did admire the personal philosophy of Jesus and respected the apparent (eventual?) goodness of God. So it is not some flaw of character to apply a bit of skepticism or doubt to all that we encounter in this world.

A culture of euphemism

1images-Walt_Palmer_433576075Certainly even the news is subject to fakery, and even seemingly “real” events can be staged to deceive, or else events quickly get blown out of proportion as well. It’s all in the packaging.

But people don’t seem to care! Why else would people willingly become a fan of ‘professional wrestling’ which is all a deception, an act, and a fake? Even our so-called “reality shows” are staged to encapsulate and leverage drama for entertainment.

Reality comes home to roost

Now we actually have a reality show star in Donald Trump running for the office of President. We’ve already had an actor like Ronald Reagan take the world stage. Honestly, no one can tell the difference between the statements these men make for effect from those in which they truly believe.

NewsYes, the most frightening fact of the world may be how fake it is. And as a result, we’ve evolved a culture of euphemism, in which it is considered an acceptable method of communication to make false statements simply because they feel like they could be true. All it takes to escape consequence is to parse the statement with a disclaimer, “That’s not what I really meant to say” or “You took my words out of context.”

The worst fakers don’t even pretend to care about the truth. They all such inquiries “gotcha” questions simply because they are never prepared to answer in honest fashion.

And when that doesn’t work, they conspire to create their own realities even to the point of faking events and taking lives. Because if that’s what it takes to win, they’re going to do it. If it gets captured on live TV for the world to see, all the better.

Because fake reality is often even better than the real thing when it comes to winning a war.

On Women’s Equality Day and why the dicks keep getting in the way

For years those Viagra and Cialis commercials that mention four-hour erections were a source of considerable entertainment in our family. Even in middle school my daughter used to laugh at that disclaimer. Granted, it’s not a funny issue for those grappling with a four hour erection. But the image it leaves in your mind is rather compelling.

It also happens to symbolize the problems so many men seem to have in protecting their sense of personal virility. Once you put it out there that you’re a man with a hard on for life, it can be tough to take it back.

Still, products like Viagra remain a highly favored approach for men seeking to regain or sustain their sexual prowess. And it’s not just about age. It’s about performance and “feeling like a man,” whatever that means. So it’s a broadcast appeal that products like Viagra and Cialis use to help men feel more like men.

So let’s just call it the Viagra Effect for a moment, and consider what it really means for men to be chemically encouraged to run around all the time acting like dicks.

Insurance companies are notably ambivalent about covering the cost of Viagra. The website Personalhealthinsurance.com says this about the drug:

“The high cost of Viagra, averaging $22 to $24 per pill, leads many men to seek health insurance coverage for this drug. However, insurance companies have been ambivalent about their coverage for ED drugs, with some insurers picking up the cost and others refusing to cover any portion of the bill.

For example, Medicare Part D does not cover any type of erectile dysfunction drug. This is bad news for the elderly population, the largest group of men who need the help provided by ED medications. On the other hand, many private insurance plans, such as Aetna and United Healthcare, make provisions to cover the cost of Viagra or other ED drugs when deemed “medically necessary” by a doctor and if the patient’s state of residence requires them to do so. HMOs usually cover Viagra with a higher co-pay than for other drugs.”

We might start by considering why these products are seem to be so highly favored by politicians seeking support for their campaigns. You really don’t hear many politicians blaming men for trying to get erections. Supporting legislation that helps pay for penis power like Viagra and Cialis is likely good politics. Giving men real power over their own penises is of course a good way to win favor with male voters.

Name calling and shaming

But by contrast, it has not been an equal playing field for women seeking help from insurance companies to pay for birth control. Men like Rush Limbaugh branded Sandra Fluke a “slut” for proposing (and defending) the idea that women should have control over their own reproductive and sexual lives.

It proves there is a fine line between having a dick and being a dick. When men demand control over women’s bodies by blocking legislation to help women protect against unwanted pregnancies through insurance coverage, or de-funding legitimate services such as Planned Parenthood, that is men acting like real dicks.

On being a dick

Being a “dick” is defined by UrbanDictionary.com as “conducting oneself in an inappropriate manner to the annoyance of others.”

And for the last 20 years or so (and more, dating way back to the Catholic Church banning use of birth control) conservative men in all their misogynistic glory have been acting like one big band of collective dicks. This war on women isn’t all that hard to prove. The constant barrage of legislation against women’s reproductive rights alone is testimony to the jerkwater ways of the GOP.

This war on women has included prohibitions of even teaching about contraception.

  • According to the Guttmacher Report, “Mississippi, which had long mandated abstinence education, adopted provisions that make it more difficult for a school district to include other subjects, such as contraception, in order to offer a more comprehensive curriculum. A district will now need to get specific permission to do so from the state department of education.”

Control issues

It’s pretty clear that what the GOP wants is a female populace that is both ignorant and available according to some strangely repressive notion that a woman in control of her own body cannot be controlled in other ways. This scares the ever living heck out of insecure men. And who among the current list of GOP candidates is speaking out on behalf of women’s rights and reproductive health? (sound of crickets)

The GOP maintains a real hard-on for gaining and exerting control over women. Lurking behind this attitude is the notion that it is somehow “immoral” for a woman to prevent her partner from impregnating her. Yet there are Republican representatives who even insist that an abortion should not be available to women who were raped. This is a sick mind at work, and the sign of someone being a real dick.

A bible lesson

The cruelty of this type of control stems from long-held patriarchal beliefs that women are essentially the property of men. Consider this tale from the book of Esther. The book opens with a scene in which King Xerxes gets a little drunk and decides to show off his bride to his guests. This is what happens.

10 On the seventh day, when King Xerxes was in high spirits from wine, he commanded the seven eunuchs who served him—Mehuman, Biztha, Harbona, Bigtha, Abagtha, Zethar and Karkas— 11 to bring before him Queen Vashti, wearing her royal crown, in order to display her beauty to the people and nobles, for she was lovely to look at. 12 But when the attendants delivered the king’s command, Queen Vashti refused to come. Then the king became furious and burned with anger.

The incident quickly turns political as King Xerxes, in a fit of fear and panic over his wife’s seeming disobedience, consults with his advisors. This band of men suggests to him that Queen Vashti must be banished as a sign that women must be subservient lest the social order be disrupted. That is political, sexual control in action.

Stuck in the past

And truly, things haven’t changed in more than 2000 years. This ugly battle of control over women has remained at the heart of the social order and persists in America and other countries to this day. Men behaving like total dicks are still trying to get their Queen Vashti’s to fall in line.

But notice that the king was literally drunk with power when he issued is command to the Queen. So let’s ask the question. Would you, as a person, want to comply with the demands of such a patronizing dick? Not likely. Thus Queen Vashti stood her ground and refused to comply with the obnoxious king’s command to show herself off for the court. And rightly so.

Power shaming

How very interesting that in today’s political environment these types of power plays are still taking place. When the Fox News correspondent Megyn Kelly dared to question the king of all pompous dicks, Donald Trump, she was immediately banished from the air. That was her punishment for having the audacity to challenge male dominance on the air. Never mind that it was a debate where people are supposed to answer hard questions.

It is notable that all of Donald Trump’s answers to questions of policy are flaccid attempts at gaining favor with voters. This is a man that has run around erecting tall towers in testament to his business virility. His bankruptcies show his true character however. These amounted to a failure in prowess, and Trump bloviates to obscure all evidence of his failures. He surrounds himself with thinly clad women as a sign that he is the King of All Dicks. But in truth Trump, like so many men fearful of the intellectual and personal power of women is a man running scared in this world.

82993673This attitude can do nothing but pervert the perspectives of a man obsessed with self and personal power. Here’s what Trump said about his own daughter: “I don’t think Ivanka would do that [pose for Playboy], although she does have a very nice figure. I’ve said if Ivanka weren’t my daughter, perhaps I’d be dating her.”

That is the statement of a real dick. And when challenged on his sexist presumptions at any level, Trump goes the attack. This is his discourse on Rosie O’Donnell.  “Rosie O’Donnell is disgusting — both inside and out. If you take a look at her, she’s a slob. How does she even get on television? If I were running The View, I’d fire Rosie. I’d look her right in that fat, ugly face of hers and say, “Rosie, you’re fired.” We’re all a little chubby but Rosie’s just worse than most of us. But it’s not the chubbiness — Rosie is a very unattractive person, both inside and out.”

And so it goes.

Evolving societies

Let’s face it, the model for conservative behavior in this world has not evolved from the time of King Xerxes. This combination of fearful response and dismissiveness in the face of intellectual challenges is a pattern that must be broken in order for society to evolve.

We might start by acknowledging that Queen Vashti was right to deny the drunken, lustful commands of King Xerxes, and take that as a model for modern and justifiable behavior. If we have to start from a biblical perspective to get the selfish dicks of the world to understand that our social order has evolved through technology, medicine and social progress, then so be it.

We might also ask the GOP to stop acting like a bunch of dicks. That would help.

The time may be right for the porn industry to Trump politics

gettyimages-461656522-e1436299461791With the unrepentant whore of capitalism Donald Trump (several bankruptcies, and “You’re fired mentality) leading the Republican polls, it’s time to seriously consider if the modern version of Babylon has fully arrived.

We are either at the cusp of a real financial Armageddon or else Trump really is the Second Coming of a financial savior. That is indeed what the investment angels of Wall Street have been seeking for years, because it’s honestly going to take a miracle or the end of the world as we know it to put America back at the top of its world economic game. 

But if The Donald really is a Messiah of some sort, he’s certainly not hewing anywhere close to the model of Jesus Christ. He came out swinging with that slam on Mexicans, which set quite well with the wealthy oligarchs and the bigoted Tea Party henchman that guard the gates of Free Market Heaven. You can almost hear the cries of ecstasy from the radical right. “Jesus Christ!” they exclaim. “This guy’s the real deal!” 

But when Trump went ahead and made the claim that the American economy actually does better under Democrats than Republicans, all hell broke loose in the minds of true Republican believers.

Whip it good

Trump simply does not act like the original conservative Messiah. That would be The Ronald, otherwise known as Ronald Reagan. He was the supposed Great Communicator that strolled onto the American scene like a trustworthy uncle seeking to save the family fortune.

Then it turned out that The Ronald mortgaged his soul by selling arms to Iran in exchange for money to execute a government overthrow in Central America. Reagan was forced to use his finest acting skills trying to sell that bit of illegal farce to the American People. Then he turned around and admitted that he’d been fibbing all along. As a result, his minions fell on their swords so that the legend of Ronald Reagan with its armored chest and feet of clay could remain standing tall. 

America should have learned its lesson from that stinking cesspool of deception. Instead Reagan has remained perched on his conservative pedestal as if he never did anything wrong in his life. That sets the stage for the likes of Donald Trump. 

A modern King Herod

alg-donald-trump-jpgThe Reagan legacy makes it all the easier for a man like Donald Trump to waltz onto the scene as if he has never done anything wrong either. Never mind that Trump has spent his entire public career acting like King Herod, fawning and preening over himself while taunting men like Barack Obama over their birthrights and intellect.

But a certain brand of stupid Americans buy his schtick. “He speaks his mind,” say his political defenders…as if that were enough moxie to justify a loyal following. If that were the case, John the Baptist would never have lost his head. Let’s also not forget that it was the vengeful demand of a dancing girl that put poor John to waste. 

But we’re not hollering about the arrival Messiah over the River Jordan in this day and age. The stakes have gotten higher. Much higher, according to some, with America playing a lead role in a Revelatory play about Babylon thanks to abortion and gay marriage. America as a Republic is on the verge of a holy Armageddon according to religious prognosticators such as Pat Buchanan and Pat Robertson. 

Right behind

There are some, especially those who read the contents of outrageously non-biblical books in the Left Behind series, who believe that the Book of Revelation can be trusted and read as a playbook for the End Times. It is their contention that there are signs of the End Times all around us. 

urlIf so, how can the legitimately ignore the visage of one Donald Trump? This guy represents the anti-Christ if there ever was one!

But wait. Trump claims to be a Republican, so he’s relatively safe among conservative believers, who are taught to believe that the anti-Christ could never come from the ranks of the GOP.

What a Great Deceiver the anti-Christ turns out to be. And it’s all so predictable. The bible makes clear that the men in direct conflict with Jesus were the Republicans of his day, the Pharisees, whom Jesus called “hypocrites” and a “brood of vipers.” 

What would Jesus do? 

Perhaps today’s Republicans are just not picking up on the message that Jesus did not like religious and political conservatives as a rule.

In fact Jesus was more likely to hang out with whores and hated tax collectors in the interest of enlightening the populace about the real nature of saving souls. So perhaps it is time to rally a populist movement based on the example of Jesus? 

What if a political party of real and open sinners were to take center stage rather than rely on the hypocritical brand of closeted sinners currently running the GOP––and some other parties. What populist electorate has the financial punch and popularity to send a shock wave through modern politics. That’s right: the time is right for the emergence of the Porn Party.

Internet sensation

Pornography is one of the most popular forms of entertainment in the world. It’s a form of entertainment that literally drove the Internet to its current level of popularity and sophistication.

reagan-bonzoIt shouldn’t be hard to find a Porn Party candidate people can get behind and truly embrace. Porn is, after all, a far more popular form of entertainment than boring old actor hacks like Ronald Reagan, whose best role involved messing around with a chimpanzee in a movie titled Bedtime for Bonzo.

Actually, from the sound of that movie title, we were pretty close to electing the leader of the Porn Party in the 1980s. Nothing like a little chimpanzee bestiality to get the political blood flowing, we always say.

Raking it in

With the porn industry raking in between $4B (according to Forbes.com) and $14B a year, mostly through the Internet, all it would take to form a political action committee is a few of those ads featuring throbbing breasts and an invitation to contribute $1.69 to elect a President to guarantee the continued flow of free porn to all. 

440px-Peter_North_2010Then there needs to be an icon that can run for President. If it’s all about looking Presidential that honor could go to the likes of Peter North, a handsome porn actor known for his prodigiously sized unit and a knack for pleasing the ladies. He should appeal to the Republican base as well, because he looks like a cross between a young Mitt Romney and a very happy Rick Santorum. Who, it turns out, has some quite interesting links to the gay porn industry. 

With his boy-next-door looks and a naughty guy reputation, Peter North (Go North for President!) could also score big with women voters who can’t resist a bad boy when they see one. His running mate could be the comely Jenna Jameson, who would deliver key name recognition right out of the gate. She apparently already has a following on Fox News. This is all coming together so sweetly!

Best of all, there’s really nothing hiding in either of their closets. For the first time in America’s history, the candidates for President and Vice President could run around naked in the White House and no one would be shocked. It turns out Bill Clinton was simply ahead of his time. 

The Donald comes clean

If you think Donald Trump is much different from Bill Clinton when it comes to his attitudes toward women and sex, consider the following statements he’s made in public:  

”All of the women on ‘The Apprentice’ flirted with me — consciously or unconsciously. That’s to be expected,” Trump once said.

gettyimages-698334“I think the only difference between me and the other candidates is that I’m more honest and my women are more beautiful,” he insists.

“You know, it really doesn’t matter what [the media] write as long as you’ve got a young and beautiful piece of ass,” is another of his statements.

A political pornographer

In other words, Donald Trump is already a political pornographer. So why should the pornography industry stand back and let a man with such vanity and bad hair hog all the limelight? All he needs is a pair of black socks and a POV iPhone video and the campaign will really be off and running. 

So hey, shouldn’t Donald Trump be running under the Porn ticket?

The voting bloc is out there. Millions of Americans look at pornography every day. If the Political Action Committee for the Porn Party were to collect just one dollar from every click on a paid porn site there would be billions in the bank overnight. The Donald would certainly love the sound of that. 

And with that kind of money back the movement, there could be Porn Party candidates running for political office all over the United States. Think of the interesting effect on local school boards! Kids would soon be reading erotic material in the classroom. Now there’s a way to incentivize kids to read!

The Porn Lobby

Amsterdam++prostitutesUltimately we’d have lobbyists for the Porn Party in Washington itself! Well, considering the number of sex scandals we hear about in that city, the lobby for the Porn Party might actually be business as usual.

If Donald Trump really does win the Republican nomination, it appears the Porn Party will already be on its way to gaining its first political foothold in America. Stranger things have happened. Just ask Reagan what Bedtime for Bonzo was really like. It retrospect it really does sound a little kinky, don’t you think?

The ancient tradition of modern political bribery

While watching a Smithsonian feature on the politics of Rome and the city of Pompeii, a fact jumped out from the writing discovered on the walls of the dwellings. “The Romans did not believe in the concept of bribery,” the narrator explained while translating the observations of a Japanese archeologist. “This was an invitation to a party where a wealthy Roman citizen was trying to buy the votes of all those who attended.”

BriberyThen the Sunday Chicago Tribune featured a news story on the Nation & World section in which it is documented that so-called Super PACs (Political Action Committees) are now banding together to support the candidacy of select politicians.

The bigger the political name, the bigger the contributions. “Hundreds of millions of dollars flowing to the 2016 presidential candidates go to super PACS, the political groups that can raise unlimited sums so long as they don’t coordinate directly with campaigns. The groups were required to report the names of donors and other information to federal elections officals by Friday…” the Tribune reported.

Then it outlined where the contributions are coming from.

Ted Cruz: “$15 million, Dan and Farris Wilks, co-founders of Frac Tech, which provides equipment and services for hydraulic fracking of oil and gas wells, $11.3 million, Robert Mercer, hedge-fund executive based in New York….”

Scott Walker: $5 million, Diane Hendricks, a back or Walkers who owns a Wisconsin-based roofing and construction supply company, $5 million, Marlene Rickets, wife of Joe Rickets, founder of online brokerage TD Ameritrade and co-owner of the Chicago Cubs…

Hillary Rodham Clinton: $2 million, Haim and Cheryl Saban, an entertainment industry mogul and his wife, #1 million each, Jeffrey Katzenberg, Herbert Sandler, Steven Spielberg, George Soros and S. Donald Sussman…”

Paybacks

And those are just a few of the candidates listed along with contributions to their Super PACS. The obvious line of inquiry is whether these are truly “contributions” to the political candidates or are they bribes of influence and favors expected in return.

We all know the answer to that question of course. Today’s politicians and the people who vote for them are subject to an elaborate system of bribery just like ancient Rome.

In Rome it was considered a sign of political capability to be wealthy. We still abide by these expectations today. Only the wealthiest of American citizens can afford to run for political office on their own. All others (and that is substantial) must rely on massive contributions of money by corporations and other organizations to even compete for the attention of the public.

Populists

There are exceptions to this rule. President Barack Obama leveraged small contributions gathered through populist support from the Internet to fund his campaign. Interestingly, these contributions come with little demand for return of favors. Without powerful corporate magnates demanding political favors in return, populist money is subject only to the execution of trust in public policy.

Everything else is a bribe. The Citizens United ruling by the Supreme Court effectively legalized this system of bribery by branding corporations as “people” through the granting of “free speech” in the form of political contributions.

In other words, equality in the voter process does not really matter anymore. It’s all about who can raise the most money and then pay back the biggest political favors. That’s what gets you elected and then re-elected. It’s true on all sides of the political process.

Name recognition

Scott WalkerYes, the voters ostensibly still have to support you, but the voting populace tends to be very ill-informed on the actual voting records and policies supported by the candidates and elected officials who occupy key political offices. Instead it’s name recognition and a general party approval that gets people into office and makes them hard to dislodge.

America’s political process is dependent on a massive bribery system that defies the democratization of everything from monetary to environmental policy. As the oligarchy becomes more entrenched, there is ever greater emphasis on the importance of favors exchanged for monetary contributions. There is therefore no such thing as the “land of the free” when everything critical to the nation has a cost tied to political bribery.

Euphemistic government

The danger in this paradigm is that everything becomes a euphemism when political bribery drives decision-making. In order to justify and cover up the ugly promises made to big political benefactors, politicians are forced to whitewash or greenwash the real intentions of a cause or a law. Euphemism bleeds into the media and propaganda as well, where terms like “fair and balanced” are used to describe content and information that is anything but what it promises. That is a bribery of the soul.
Euphemistic government also explains the practice of attaching riders to otherwise good bills to gain funding for projects that might not stand scrutiny or gain approval on their own. This form of euphemistic government is just one form of the worst deception of the public trust.

Politicians even lie about their religion to gain favor and accept money and support from religion leaders whose non-profit status requires (and legally prevents) them from directly influencing public policy.

And finally, politicians turn to euphemism to justify heinous acts that are against the law, but when viewed through a political lens can come to represent a perverse sort of patriotism. Use of torture to extract information is one such euphemistic brand of patriotism.

Jesus admonished the Pharisees for mixing pursuit of wealth and power with the public trust. Yet the very people claiming that America is a so-called “Christian nation” absolutely ignore the admonishments against manipulation of the populace through faith and money. It’s a sick trend, and absolutely the product of bribery. Otherwise why would the character called Judas have betrayed Jesus to the religious authorities of his day. It was bribery, plain and simple, that did that deed.

How the game is played

This is a direct parallel to the path of injustice and inequality America has now taken. It clearly explains the migration of wealth to the 1% in America. Investment companies and banksters bribe politicians and threaten them with words that imply a crash of the economy… if laws are not deregulated. It’s not only bribery, but blackmail.

Those who know the bribery game best know how to succeed in business and politics. That’s how the game was played in Rome, and that’s how it continues to be played in America today.

And we all know how that comes out in the end. Pompeii was buried in ashes and Rome was buried in the ash heaps of history and overreaching empire.

Of Christians and lions and the death of Cecil

christiansYou may recall that in ancient Rome it was reputed that certain Emperors enjoyed feeding Christians to the lions. Actually the straight facts about that practice are a little difficult to discern. Roman games often employed animals or “beasts” as dramatic forms of death for prisoners or other hapless victims. The Romans also pitted beast against beast for curiosity’s sake.

Despite the prurient allure of such violent contests, the flair often wore off after a while. The website The Straight Dope addresses the problem thusly:

“You have to think the killing of animals might have eventually gotten dull as well — it’s estimated that 9,000 beasts were slain during the inaugural games of the Colosseum alone (possibly an exaggeration; another source says 3,500 during 26 events). Over time more exotic animals were introduced to hold the crowd’s interest: lions and panthers turned up in 186 BC, bears and elephants in 169 BC, hippos and crocodiles in 58 BC. Pompey brought rhinos to Rome; Caesar wowed ’em with giraffes. The ever-growing number and variety of animals required put a considerable burden on the supply chain. In his Natural History, Pliny the Elder tells us lions were originally hard to catch (the idea was to chase them into covered pits), but later it was discovered they could be subdued by throwing a cloak over their heads. Elephants were captured and tamed by beatings and starvation. A major source of animals was the Roman army, which had a special rank (venator immunis) for those in charge of animal procurement.”

So there’s always been this morbid (and often inhumane) fascination with killing exotic creatures in dramatic fashion. The very fact that the Roman army was chartered to bring home wild beasts for purposes of slaughter signifies the human capacity for cruelty and carnage.

Of course Christians were just one of the targets of torture and death for entertainment. People were killed to send political messages as well. Thousands of people from commoners to gladiators were sacrificed in the Colosseum and on thousands more nailed to raw stakes of wood by crucifixion.

But the raw thought of being tossed to lions that could tear apart flesh and break bones with massive teeth captured the imagination of history. So the concept of Christians being thrown to the lions has persisted as an iconic expression of political power out of control.

That also contributes in some way to the idea that killing a lion is considered an act of bravery in this world. Same goes for tigers or leopards or any number of giant cats. That leads some people to the idea that killing such creatures is a mark of personal virtue. In fact trophy hunters around the world pay tons of money for the opportunity to shoot lions, tigers and polar bears, to name a few favorite targets. Then they cut off the heads of their victims and save the pelts of these wild animals as souvenirs of their acts.

It is remarkable that throwing Christians to the lions is can be considered a sign of human depravity, yet killing lions for sport is considered by some a worthy use of time.

2AC68FD400000578-3171875-image-a-29_1437646780726It is only when a lion such as Cecil is killed that the juncture of depravity and human ego are so clearly illustrated. The fact that the lion had a name and was a favorite of many visitors to a park has much to do with why the dentist who shot Cecil is being so reviled. Typically the human race needs to anthropomorphize animals in order to relate to their plight. Even gorilla genius Jane Goodall relied on a certain amount of name-calling to make her science appeal to the masses. The fact that Cecil had a human name brings the murder of this lion close to home.

Think about this for a moment: the work of Christian author and apologist C.S. Lewis included a seminal series of children’s books called the Chronicles of Narnia. The lead character in the books was a lion called Aslan who symbolized the virtues of none other than Jesus Christ. At one point in the books the lion gives himself over to a wild pack of beasts and a wicked Queen who tie down their victim and stab him to death on a slab of stone.

Aslan emerges as a spiritual influence for the rest of the book series. His presence for the children who live to become kings and queens in the land of Narnia is one of strength and virtue.

There is a parallel character to the death of one Cecil the Lion, whose presence in Africa represented the best of creation. The hunter that paid more than $50,000 for the right to shoot and kill a lion with a bow and arrow has been depicted as something of an evil wizard for his actions. His guides reputedly used trickery by hanging dead animals on their vehicle to lure Cecil out of the park and in range for a shot with a bow and arrow. But that did not kill the lion, and 40 hours later the beast was dispatched by means of a gun.

Some might consider this last act merciful. In fact many hunters fail to kill their targets on the first shot. No matter what weapons a person chooses to use in a hunt, there are drawbacks. One can fail by aim or by strength of ammunition. Good hunters try to answer these questions before they go out into the field. There are also those that contend these risks are the thrill of a good hunt. In the “us versus them” version of modern day hunting, it is the contention that animals such as Cecil are still dangerous enough to kill. In the minds of trophy hunters worldwide, that makes it a challenge to hunt them.

There remains the question as to whether trophy hunting is not simply an echo of the Roman era when wild animals were considered curiosities to be sacrificed for human entertainment.

As a kid I used guns to hunt some. We shot everything we could find. But the day that a sparrow was erased at close range by a shotgun made me wonder exactly what the purpose was. Then I picked up a stone one afternoon, and with deadly aim took out a robin off the top of a fencepost, killing it with one throw.

dscn9203.jpgWalking over to the songbird, I leaned down and watched the last flicker of life go out of the bird’s eyes. That was far from a proud moment. The same held true when I was a somewhat tortured kid being teased by friends at school about being too skinny. I took out my anger by tossing stones at some feral rabbits in our neighbor’s yard and killed one of them too. It howled in pain at first. I was forced to put it out of its misery.

They say that torturing small animals is a sign of a disturbed and potentially dangerous mind. I am glad to say that the emotional wounds that drove me to hurt animals were ultimately healed.

I am not anti-hunting per se, and do not purport to link all hunters to disturbed states of mind. Certainly a day shooting pheasants in the fields of South Dakota may be a pleasant enough occupation. Those birds are a renewable resource for the most part. But I do question hunters that retreat to a fenced in range to shoot wild boars. The sport simply gets strange at that point.

And hunting where baiting is involved? Can’t really justify that very well either. Among birdwatchers it is even considered bad form to bait birds in for photgraphs.

Ultimately, one must consider seriously the position of creatures like lions in the scheme of creation. Certainly they once were fearsome and dangerous creatures and a threat to human beings. Now that we’ve essentially conquered the world and in many cases eradicated or reduced species of big cats to fragmented populations, there is no need to go around shooting them.

1images-Walt_Palmer_433576075A bored dentist in Minnesota is no better in that respect than a bored soldier in the Roman army all those years ago. This idea that you require stimulation from killing other things in order to feel powerful and alive is antiquated, stupid and dumb.

And if you don’t believe me, you can ask Aslan. Yes, he’s a fictional creature who only symbolizes the figure of Christ in relation to mankind. Then again, Christ symbolizes the commitment to act in good conscience and with respect to the grace of God. In many respects, if you kill a lion for no good purpose other than to make yourself feel more gratified and powerful, you have put a bullet right through the heart of God. Going around killing lions is, therefore, a rather stupid and shortsighted thing to do. It does not enlighten or raise one’s conscience to accomplish such a feat.

We muse on the significance of Christians once being thrown to the lions and shudder at the thought of such violence. Yet we typically ignore the real meaning of the act. It’s not the lion’s fault, you see. They’re just doing what their instincts tell them to do. We human beings are supposed to know better.

Why Scott Walker is so, so wrong about his providential call to be President

Governor_of_Wisconsin_Scott_Walker_08-645x325_900x600-640x427Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker is now officially running for President of the United States, and he wants everyone to know that it was not his choice alone to run.

This is what he wrote in an email to his supporters:

“Here’s why: I needed to be certain that running was God’s calling – not just man’s calling. I am certain: This is God’s plan for me and I am humbled to be a candidate for President of the United States.”

As documented on the website FMLgoneviral.com, Walker had more to say about his mission to be President as well. “Our U.S. Constitution calls for freedom of religion, not freedom from religion,” he said. “The founders of this exceptional country took religious freedom very seriously and we must redouble our efforts to protect these freedoms today.”

Freedom from religion

Actually, Scott. You’re wrong about that. The Constitution clearly states that the United States government shall make no law pertaining to the establishment of religion. It absolutely guarantees that United States citizens can enjoy freedom from religion as well as freedom of religion. If people want to live in the United States and choose not to believe in God, they can do so with full support of the Constitution and the law it represents.

But you, Scott Walker, want to believe differently. You want to essentially ignore the very clear definitions of religious freedom outlined in the Constitution and impose a half-true, narrow-minded version of the law upon the land. And that, as such, disqualifies you to be President. If you do not understand the most basic aspects of the Constitution and why the laws were written to protect our freedoms, then you don’t have what it takes to be President.

Do what Jesus did

Plus, this stuff about talking to God and being told that you are providentially destined to become President. And then insinuating all that in public? That means you don’t even understand your own faith that well either.

Because if you recall that when Jesus commenced his ministry he was inclined to let his actions speak for themselves. Rather than bragging on the front end that God was on his side, Jesus proved by example that he taught and acted with authority from God.

His preaching was not about his own glory and a kingly position here on earth. In fact Jesus carefully avoided any pretense toward replacing the rulers or religion or politics in his day. The most political act Jesus Christ ever did was to allow himself to be crucified by earthly authorities and rulers.

God Complexes

So this notion that God wants to install you as President is not only absurd and unbiblical at every level, it is a sign of a sociopathic personality with a God Complex going on beneath that thick little skull.

2016possiblegopcontenders101God may have indeed called certain leaders in history to be powerful and reign as kings. But God also warned his people that the ultimate rule of authority should come from God alone. God suggested that if people simply abided by his laws, he would provide them with protection against all foes, and prosperity. Yet his people still demanded kings, and God again tried to warn them that installing people into power would only produce more pain and imbalance. But the people insisted nevertheless, and when those kings dealt out all kinds of bad policy and abuse, leading to wars and other earthly difficulties, God was left shaking his head in sadness and regret.

Which makes us wonder how many other potential rulers with a God complex are out there claiming God as their keeper when God actually wants something far, far simpler from the human race. Love your neighbor as yourself. Stop discriminating and persecuting the weak or needy. Love one another. That is trust in action.

Healthy suspicions

The God you’re claiming to represent apparently has you doing everything the opposite of that, Scott Walker. Which means that listening to men like you claim that God has deigned you to be President makes many of us suspicious and concerned for your very soul. We think you’d better go have another heart-to-heart conversation with God. And when you come back, put on some sackcloth and ask forgiveness for being such an arrogant, selfish, ungodly prick of a political candidate. You’ve clearly already sold your soul and made choices that have absolutely nothing to do with God and everything with imposing your chosen will and borrowed ideology on everyone under the sun.

But we see right through you, Scott Walker, and especially your desperate attempt to suck up to all those people seeking to use religion to accomplish earthly gains. It’s a sickness of mind, Scott Walker, and a clear warning that you are not fit for office, or even a seat in the pews.

An evolutionary look at race, religion and class warfare

Toward the end of a seven-mile run in a prairie park in Wisconsin, my companion and I passed a group of soccer players engaged in a pickup match on a small mowed field. They wore the jerseys of teams from Mexico, Central America and Europe. Soccer is the world’s game, you see.

Earlier on the run we’d seen a group of women and children walking the gravel path together. These were the wives and children of the soccer players, for they all gathered together under a shade tree when the match was done.

I’d turned to my companion and said to her, “Just think, their descendants came to this continent from the other side of Pacific.”

Routes-oF-Ancient-Americas-migrationsScience and genetics tell us the people who settled the North American and South American continent came over the land bridge to Alaska. Through human evolution and adaptation to environment these post-Asian peoples populated a highly diverse and unknown world. In many cases their skin evolved toward a brown or red color in response to hot, sunny climates. In that small way they were evolving back towards the dark-skinned origins of the African past from which we all came.

Civilization

These tales of massive emigration provide important foundations for discussion of the human race and the racism that drives much of its self-perception. We know that highly evolved civilisations in Egypt and Asia emerged from the original migration out of Africa. Their mathematics, arts and sciences represented a Renaissance of importance to all of civilization. Even through dark times in history and wars of slaughter over tribe, race and wealth, it was this belief in self and the theater of the mind that remained most important in sustaining human life and progress. In the wake of all this movement were structures representing the human desire to reach for the sky and deities. The pyramids of Egypt and the temples of the Aztecs evolved as the highest expression of human culture on earth.

Behind the Eight Ball

8-Ball Wallpaper 1024x768Back in Israel and the Middle East the concurrent battles over worldview were taking place a little later than the Asian and Central American pursuit of self-realization. Yet the events that took place there in the sands and hills around Jerusalem were telling in their net results.

The Romans had long tried to impose their values and their religion through force, but ultimately what emerged triumphant in that society was a faith supposedly architected for peace. The Eight Ball of fortune and force turned out to be wrong.

Christianity was embraced as the official religion of the state through Constantine, but its message of tolerance and brotherly was ultimately subverted for a focus on triumph of holy will. Because as Europe was settled, the warlike aspects of a largely white race of human beings found tremendous and convenient mobility in the history of the religion they embraced. Once the Jewish temples had been razed a few times over, faith become mobile. Canonized in a Bible, The Word superseded the traditional anchor of capitol and place.

Of course the Jewish Torah tried to accomplish the same thing, but that story took a different path. Blamed for the sacrifice of Christ, the Jews became targets for violence rather than partners in history. Just as they had experienced before in history, the Jewish people were left without a home. So they too used their wits, replacing capitol (city or state) with capital (money and negotiation) as a means to survive.

Where once the Judeo-Christian culture knew its place in the temples of Jerusalem, and capitol was where God could be found, the culture actually reversed course (or was forced yet again) to become a nomadic people all over again. Capitol was traded for pursuit of capital, and anyone that stood in the way of that pursuit became the enemy. But this adaptation became a parallel point of competition between Christians and Jews, who were in turn doubly ostracized and persecuted for being better capitalists than their Christian brethren. We hate in others what we find most lacking in ourselves.

Nomads

arkThe Jews had many times before been a nomadic people, migrating “out of Egypt” to assume lands that God ostensibly bequeathed to them. This history conveniently (yet ironically) supplied the motivation and belief that God was on the side of all those who supposedly followed His way. Essentially this providence was stolen by those with a willingness to ignore the obligation to faith and honor of God’s law that came with it.

The Ark of the Covenant originally represented by Judeo-Christian tradition as a symbol of God’s promise instead became a possession as much as a promise. People embraced this materialistic version of faith because it resolved the guilt over being both rich and favored by God.

Made in God’s image?

For powerful Christians, there was still the issue of painting over the notion that Christianity had diverse origins in terms of race and culture. White Christians painted pictures of Jesus in their own image, and built tremendous cathedrals as signposts of its journey to world domination. Pagan traditions were folded into the faith as recruitment tools and these became (as Christmas did) signs that devotion to the faith was complete.  This cultlike triumphalism burst across the European landscape backed by religious fervor and an increasingly inventive ability to kill in the name of God.

Gustave_dore_crusades_entry_of_the_crusaders_into_constantinopleThis restless, almost unhinged worldview was held at bay by civilizations to the East that could resist its restless and warlike tendencies. Surely the Crusades were an attempt to “take back” the so-called Holy Land, but it never really stuck. That is still the case today. Another religion that shares the Abrahamic storyline simply won’t give in to Western pressures. That would be Islam, whose principle zealots hate both Jews and Christians alike.

Truth be told, no one really knows who was made in God’s image, or what lands and nations were bequeathed to whom. So the fight continues to this day.

Commerce and conquest

Fortunately, as civilizations grew and trade evolved, necessary compromises emerged. But even those promise continue to be broke by those too greedy to realize that sustainability is a foundational value in God’s kingdom.

Instead, the world is still being ruled by a desperate need for extraction based on the early Genesis belief that God ceded all the earth to a chosen people. Of course these folks miss the fact that their ancestors repeatedly engaged in behavior that invoked God’s wrath. So remains that this faulty history is a legacy that makes it convenient to go out and kill in the name of God, then beg forgiveness as if the carnage never happened. After all, that was how it was done in the Bible.

slaveBut even warlike Christians can’t conquer all. Stifled by resistance from the East, the now largely white races of human beings embracing God as their witness looked to expand their Empire in other directions. Africa was close enough, and a known quantity, but somehow it did not capture the imagination of Christians whose search for gold and conquests across the ocean still beckoned.

So the white migration embarked on its trans-Atlantic conquests, murdering and enslaving people as they arrived on the islands of the Caribbean, all along the Gulf of Mexico and up into North America. Cortez and his ilk had no mercy. It was kill and extract resources in the name of Kings and Queens and God.

Second wave

Then warlike whites flowed over through North America and the real conquest of the New World was begun. Once it got rolling and Manifest Destiny was invoked to justify the killing, there was no reason to slow down and consider what was truly going on. It was genocide all over again, and in biblical proportions.

Love your enemies, to death

FlagWaiverWhen it came to world expansion and domination, the whole “love your enemies” aspect of Christian tradition became an inverse equation. “We love our enemies because we bring them the message of God,” was the essential justification for taking over entire nations. Religion became confused with patriotism. Missionaries ran in the company of killers. It was either convert or die. Such is most of human history.

So the true meaning of “love your enemies” was beaten with a religious stick and cast aside out of convenience. It has never gotten completely out of the ditch into which it was self-righteously thrown. But like the Good Samaritan of old, there are Christians now seeking to right these wrongs and bring back the notion of loving our enemies in its full meaning. Likewise, these believers abhor use of indefensible discrimination by race and culture as tools of political manipulation and domination.

Foxy thinkers

The capitalistic Christians are fighting back hard. They treasure their supposed triumphs and value the social and political position it has bestowed upon them. They give it names like American Exceptionalism to justify the seeming victory of capital over loving our neighbors

But God knows better and always has. God does not like the calculated erection of euphemisms any more than the construction of a Golden Calf. These all represent efforts to circumvent the covenant of love and trust that is supposed to ride at the heart of all faith.

Violent defense of racism

It is both fascinating and disturbing to witness the often violent defense of racism as if it were an expression of God’s will. Of course it isn’t, but it reflects a conveniently perverted narrative of faith that embraces racial warfare as a sign of providential progress. Such was the case when a certain class of moneyed Christians tried to justify the use of slavery to prop up the economy of the American South. They even advocated secession from the Union as a tool of protest against their racist, stringently capitalistic worldview. Ultimately this effort failed, and yet their are millions who still abide by its philosophy and fly a Confederate flag as a sign that they have not yet evolved in their thinking.

Media wars

When you throw a dose of class warfare into this mix and enough money to broadcast the message through modern media and even news outlets, it can be hard to hold the line against the emergent brand of capitalistic faith.

Yet God and Christ said the meek shall inherit the earth, so we have that on our side. But it’s hard to watch the social and political carnage that takes place as a result of evil at work in the world. It has always been that way. Psalms and Lamentations have been written about why God allows evil to triumph. Perhaps it’s all one big godly big joke, and the Second Coming is the cosmic punchline.

Lacking that eventuality, we must look to the present for signs that balance can and will return. Of course evolution has an answer. It always does. We know that 99% of all living things that ever existed on the earth are now extinct. And despite the Judeo-Christian belief that God will provide a New Earth, there is biblical justification for thinking God has less of a sense of humor than we like to believe. The metaphor of the Noachian flood alone parallels God’s willingness to wipe out every living thing on earth in order to make things right again.

Noah’s Real Ark

Jan Brueghel the Elder, 1613

“The Lord saw that the wickedness of humankind was great in the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of their hearts was only evil continually. And the Lord was sorry that he had made humankind on the earth, and it grieved him to his heart. So the Lord said, “I will blot out from the earth the human beings that I have created––people together with the animals and creeping things and birds of the air, for I am sorry that I have made them.” But Noah found favor in the sight of the Lord.

Who were these people God regretted? Were they the people who according to his word loved their neighbors as themselves? Or were they full of capitalistic fervor and conquering, warlike ways? Were they racists as well, bickering over the color of skin and the nations of origin? These were the evils God abhorred in human beings, for they lead to violence against any or all that they encounter and judge to be inferior.

And what does Noah represent? He represents those that hold out against such capitalistic fervor and the rank behaviors (the love of money is the root of all evil…) that come with it. The real ark of Noah is this commitment to hold out against violence, racism, discrimination and exploitation of others through war, commerce and prejudice. The real Noah recognizes that preserving aspects of God’s creation is paramount to faith.

Evolution and salvation

How interesting that it turns out our capitalistic ways of extraction and unhindered appetites for resources are similarly violent toward the very earth upon which we depend for survival? Indeed, we depend upon the earth even for salvation, yet capitalistic Christians defy laws that protect the environment on grounds that human beings should have the right to exploit the earth’s resources any way they see fit. This is based on the idea that the Genesis-driven notion of a literal “dominion” over the earth excuses all behaviors.

Yet what more potent symbol is there for salvation than protecting the earth, God’s creation? It’s almost as if evolution and God were conspiring to produce the same result as foretold in the story of Noah.

“Now the earth was corrupt in God’s sight, and the earth was filled with violence,” the Bible says. “I have determined to make an end of all flesh, for the earth is filled with violence because of them; now I am going to destroy them with all the earth.”

Notice that God’s massive anger is not about sex, or gay marriage or Mexicans working jobs that other Americans won’t take. God is angry about violence, especially capitalistic (exploitative) violence based on the unhinged belief that God bequeaths all the earth to a single race of people.

Sickness of mind

Donald Trump's proposed golf courseIt’s a sickness of mind that ignores the lessons of both evolution and God. Yet here we are, with news outlets and political parties proving every day that the real lessons of Sodom and Gomorrah were never learned. Those violent men at the door of Lot were not there for sex, but for violent, aggressive purposes of dominance and exploitation. That is why God destroyed those cities as well. The aggression and assumptive behaviors of people who thought strangers were their property to abuse was the real tipping point for God.

Those same people stand at the doors of society today, threatening and cajoling innocent citizens with their demands for wealth and power. They beg for our votes and hate the very government to which they get elected. They are conflicted, angry and violent men (and women in some cases) willing to take a nation to war as a means to further exploit the world and its resources.

And are you really going to believe what these types of people have to say when God clearly hates the violence and greed of their ways? One should hope not.