Did They Really Have Souls To Sell?

A few days ago, I was on the treadmill watching “Morning Joe,” and heard Presidential historian Jon Meacham, from all indications a deeply religious man, respond to questions about the Trump Administration’s “biblical” defense of separating parents and children in order to deter asylum seekers. Meacham predicted a “day of reckoning” for Evangelical Trump supporters, and put it in stark terms: They sold their souls for a Supreme Court seat, and they’ll have to decide whether it was worth it.

Of course, in order to sell a soul, you first need to have one.

Later that same day, The Washington Post reported that Mike Pence (aka “Mr. Piety”)has turned the Vice-President’s office into “a gateway for lobbyists.”

About twice as many companies and other interests hired lobbyists to contact the vice president’s office in Pence’s first year than in any single year during the tenures of Vice Presidents Joe Biden and Richard B. Cheney, filings show.

Speaking of selling one’s soul….(Since this is Pence, one assumes the sale price reflects an appropriate and substantial discount…)

A couple of observations: first, Sessons’ use of a biblical reference to justify a governmental policy is profoundly anti-American. As several commentators have pointed out, America isn’t a theocracy.  Public policies must be attacked or defended with secular reasoning and argumentation, not appeals to theology.

More generally, however, what Sessions and Pence both exemplify is the cynical use of religion to advance personal and political ends–to justify bigotry, to claim privilege, and to reassure a frightened and angry “base” that its hostility to the “other” is God’s will.

As regular readers of this blog know, I am not religious. But I have friends who are genuinely religious people, and there is a huge difference between the devout people I know, who tend to be both humble and kind, and the “faux religious” and “holier than thou” hypocrites who are supporting and excusing the behaviors of this administration.

Meacham may be right when he predicts a day of reckoning. If I had to hazard a guess, however, I’d predict that reckoning will consist only of recognizing the strategic failure of efforts to find religious justifications for Trump’s unholy behaviors.

Somehow, I don’t see the Mike Pences and Jeffrey Beauregard Sessions of this world looking deep inside themselves and reckoning with the truly important questions: have I been a good person? Have I been honest? Kind? Have I read my holy book in its entirety, or have I cherry-picked and “interpreted” it in order to convince myself that God dislikes the same people I do? What is the nature of my obligation to my fellow-man and woman? What is justice? What is mercy?

Do I have a soul? Have I sold it for a mess of pottage?

48 thoughts on “Did They Really Have Souls To Sell?

  1. I came to believe, decades ago, that maybe a dictatorship is better. Under past dictators, religionists has to be careful what they preached on pain of death. It’s going to be Open Season starting in November.

  2. If any politician believes that their own personal celestial Santa Clause runs the universe, then they should NOT be allowed to hold public office.
    This stuff is just stupid
    Good & Kind do not belong to the Santa Clause people
    They belong to all of us
    Lets get back to being a good and kind nation

  3. What Pete wrote yesterday is worth re-Pete-ing:

    Pete
    June 17, 2018 at 3:00 pm

    Rightly or wrongly we are effectively limited to only two political parties in the US. To imply they are equal ignores almost all US history of the last few years, I’m thinking the last few decades.

    There is a range of political philosophies contained in both parties but I see very little evidence of much overlap.

    We have different tasks to attend to this election year and the next one and it’s way too early to guess at the details of the next one. Much will unfold before that decision process can gel.

    As for this one it strikes me as no choice for those trying to restore governmental order here and that is minimize Republican influence in the US Congress, among governorships, and in state legislatures.

    In the absence of that Donald Dystopia and his hoard of incompetent inexperienced immoral and out of touch pillagers will continue their quest for global domination and the destruction of what’s been built over 250 years following our Constitution here.

    The more we can render them impotent this year the less time consuming the task of rebuilding will be after 2020.

  4. OMG; haven’t you been paying attention? We are already well on our way to a religious dictatorship; just a few more i’s to dot and t’s to cross and it will be the law of this land.

    After watching Massa Sessions speak, I read Romans 13 (I keep my Bible and 2 copies of the Constitution next to my computer for reference); I found nothing to justify separating parents from children in the current border situation. Local problems with claimed under-funding and under-staffing by the Department of Children’s Services leaves children in dangerous situations with known abusive parents or guardians. Is this where those children will eventually be placed? Here in our adoption court system, Indiana has found a creative way to separate mother from child after the mother’s death. Yes! Another of my own family situations; when my 24 year old granddaughter died having seizures because she opted to try to carry her baby to term knowing it further endangered her life, her daughter was placed with the child’s grandmother, a licensed foster care parent. Total strangers may take in children for years but a family member has a brief few months to foster their related child before deciding whether to adopt them outright or place them in foster care with strangers. My daughter of course chose to adopt her granddaughter; not knowing until the adoption was finalized that her mother’s name was removed from her birth certificate and the adoptive mother’s name put in her place. Heartbreaking; they did NOT want that done, were not asked and the judge didn’t understand why they cried.

    Immigrant children are being separated from parents in other than border-crossing situations. Why are the immigrants still trying to cross our southern border? Evidently they have no idea what they are walking into because they wouldn’t deliberately come into this governmental shambles knowing their children would be taken away or they would not try.

    Regarding the question of having souls; it is my opinion that Satan picked up Pence and Sessions at a 2 for 1 low price sale. He probably bartered through Trump to finalize “The Art Of The Deal”.

  5. in my travels as a trucker,and usually hanging around like minded working class, im always in and around the so called religious sects. mainly evansgelicos. now, ill be frank,i dont even believe in god,or its claim. darwin,yes,were all freaks of nature,and thats how i see it. of that being,and we dont have enough sense to protect our way of,life,world,and order, we have failed as a species. say what ya like, the reality show is,everyday,and damn be it,if i have to shove that down someones ear. evans are the most vocal,so call closest to god. if thats the claim,hes sure changed alot,kinda looks like trump from what im hearing today…now thats sick.. i believe some real,theology is neede bad.
    bumper sticker:
    save America,
    boil teabagger

  6. You can be a Trump supporter or you can be a practicing Christian. You can’t be both, at least not without being a raging, drooling, rabid hypocrite.

  7. Sheila writes, “Sessions and Pence both exemplify is the cynical use of religion to advance personal and political ends–to justify bigotry, to claim privilege, and to reassure a frightened and angry “base” that its hostility to the “other” is God’s will.”

    In Twitter-speak – #BOOM.

    It’s simply well strategized and well-financed manipulation. The Koch’s have been working on this for a LONG TIME. You can’t tell these people the truth about the real strategy of the GOP because even half-witted “deplorables” would raise an eyebrow.

    That’s okay, why shouldn’t they manipulate their base?

    Do you think the Democratic Party is any better?

    The Wall Street Wing manipulates ‘minority populations’ into believing they are fighting for them, but once they get the votes, they begin working with Wall Street while tossing a few bones to their faithful base.

    Divide and conquer. Using political wedges on social issues only. BUT NEVER ADDRESS THE ROOT CAUSE OF OUR PROBLEMS.

    The unifiers during the 60’s were all conveniently murdered because they saw the “economic system” as the problem and said so.

    Even presidents were expendable. This is why I cheer on Trump’s Twitter feed and his deplorable base. He is not a polished politician who has learned how to lie with a straight face while people applaud. His lies are bold and blatant…very transparent.

    No more “dog whistles”…the masks/hoods have come off. Religious leaders justifying hate is classic and will do for religion what Trump/Pence is doing for our government – exposing them as frauds.

    Why shouldn’t soulless preachers collude with soulless politicians – they both serve power and money.

    Even though some of the boomers don’t grasp it, Trump’s time in office will do more to move this country forward than any other.

    I mean seriously, look at all the progressive women running for office against the corrupt democratic wing of the party. 😉

  8. An all to often part of ‘religion’ is at work with the ‘Vangelicals’ now and it’s called HERESY. That is something that comes with the mis-use of religion for non-religious purposes — usually political, because – let’s face it — politics is NOT this dirty all by itself.

  9. Todd,

    “The Wall Street Wing manipulates ‘minority populations’ into believing they are fighting for them, but once they get the votes, they begin working with Wall Street while tossing a few bones to their faithful base.”

    “Divide and conquer. Using political wedges on social issues only. BUT NEVER ADDRESS THE ROOT CAUSE OF OUR PROBLEMS.”

    Ditto, as clear as day.

  10. I doubt that there will ever be a “day of reckoning ” because bible quoting folks seem to eclectly pick and choose verses to suit their prejudices.

  11. The “soul” is invisible DARK Photon light. No more , no less. It can not be bought or so;d.
    Religion is a bastardized spelling of the word , religarai. – to bind and hold back the mind – from enlightenment.
    Government comes from gubinare which means control , and mense which mean mind.
    Government AND religion are BOTH agents of just that – mind control of the masses.

  12. Todd is best with the facts.

    Any strategy that doesn’t deal with THE ROOT CAUSE can only be described as FOOLHARDY.

    fool’har’dy adj. -id est, -id-est foolishly daring; reckless—fool’har’di-ly adv. —fool’har’di-ness n.

    In other words, who in their right mind would follow the DNC?

  13. In answer to Marv and Todd: I will follow the DNC at least for the upcoming election. There is not an acceptable alternative for me. You can debate the weaknesses and faults of both political parties and the democrats still come out ahead. They have their demons, but they don’t have Trump, Sessions, Pence, et. al. That’s enough for me for now and I hope it will give all a breather from the carnage currently on the 24/7 cycle.

  14. Throughout history, the Bible has been used to justify all kinds of man’s inhumanity to man, as well as to the planet and other animals. Don’t expect a day off reckoning. It is what it is.

    Todd and Marv,

    Do you offer an alternative to voting Democratic in the coming elections?

  15. daleb and Peggy Hannon; thank you for pointing out the simple fact that we are between a rock and a hard place. But only before, during and after the Civil War was the salvation of the entire nation at stake as it is today; and it worsens daily…sometimes hourly. We have TWO options and maintaining the status quo by NOT voting Democrat will sink us lower and lower in the swampy mire called the GOP.

  16. Daleb,

    Thanks for the eloquent summary of two rants. A friend of mine predicts a civil war. I agree. This time, however, I’m not sure our Constitution will survive. It may be a better outcome for the majority of citizens, or worse depending on who “wins”.

    Stephen Miller is a symptom of the deepest sickness I’ve ever seen in the public eye in this country. Not even the deplorable Dick Cheney can appear as evil and heartless (pun intended) as Miller. This little prick has been a Nazi his entire life and is now telling this pinheaded president (I will not use upper case for the title in Trump’s case) how to make policy. We are truly in the grip of a criminal enterprise that is shredding our nation and any decency it possessed.

    Yes, voting for a Democrat at all costs is imperative, no matter what the cynics say. Who will they vote for, Meryl Streep?

  17. I keep having the same debate with people (and I see it here in comments to Sheila’s blogs often) about what is the opposite to these Trump Republicans… or what is the alternative option on the ballot? One can mock or berate the Dems until one is blue in the face, but those Dems are your only choice. That doesn’t mean I am preaching blind loyalty. It’s just reality. There is a good chance that Trump is our President not because he did any thing particularly well, rather the Dems failed to figure out how to act smartly. I often go further in these debates and blame the voters – especially those that seldom vote. I have often suspected that if we had a reliable voter base, we would get better candidates. People tell me that better candidates get voters. I don’t buy that… good people don’t run because they suspect that on election day, no one will show up. We are left, then, with creatures of the system that know how to manipulate and manage party infrastructures to their advantage. You want the opposite of Trump as president. Show up to vote regularly and competent people will stand for office – and that is what is the opposite of Trump… competence, with some extra helpings of brain power.

  18. daleb, Peggy, and JoAnn,

    Where did I say I wasn’t voting for the Democratic Party? I don’t have to be a “card carrying member” to vote for the Democratic Party. I don’t have any other choice. On the other hand, I don’t have to kid myself or anyone else about the truth of what the DNC is all about and the state of democracy in America.

    The election in November, from my perspective, is about stopping the Trump train and those riding on it on it. I don’t have to give up my soul nor does anyone else have to do the same to vote for the Democratic Party. It’s a vote against a new strain of Fascism that’s all. From my perspective, it is as simple as that. I don’t have to lie with myself or anyone else just to pull the lever. It is not all that difficult or is it?

  19. To all of those who continue to do nothing but bad-mouth and put-down the Democratic party; I can’t help but wonder how you talk about and treat your own spouses, partners, children, all family members and friends when they behave in a way you disapprove of. Your philosophy is to deliberately throw out the baby with the bathwater. Reading comments from some of those who can’t seem to cease the negative habit; there have been times when you were mistaken and/or wrong in your assessment of events, issues and some of us on the blog. If you were drowning and a Democrat offered to save you; would you refuse the offer?

  20. It took 3 or 4 decades for oligarchs to work their wealth concentration magic through entertainment media and there’s little hope that it will take less to unwind it. It would be convenient if it were otherwise but reality really doesn’t care what’s convenient for us. As it is popular to say now it’s a process, steady pressure relentlessly applied.

    First we have to contain the growing damage and that requires a Congress and state governments who are willing to. Republicans have shown no appetite for that work at all. By my back of the envelope calculations that leaves Democrats but we know that some of them resent the trail of tears of the 2016 election so much that they will not participate in solving the problem so amoured are they with complaining about it. That means the work this year is turning out the Democrat voters. That’s grunt work so we have to use places like this to motivate workers by turning over all of the rocks strewn in our path then pointing out without exception the critters who crawl out looking for more darkness to hide in.

    That’s all we have to do now as well as all that we can do. Oh, Robert Mueller may help us with some jail sentences for the causes of our dispair but Agent Orange can probably pardon them as fast as the FBI can convict them.

    In the meantime let’s get to work in getting everyone who remembers what we’ve lost ready to vote for recovery this year.

  21. JoAnn,

    “Reading comments from some of those who can’t seem to cease the negative habit; there have been times when you were mistaken and/or wrong in your assessment of events, issues and some of us on the blog.”

    In other words, are you saying that if someone doesn’t agree with you that they “were also mistaken and/or wrong in their assessment of events and issues.” What events or issues that have occurred are we talking about? It couldn’t be the November election which hasn’t been held yet. Nor could it be about the election of Donald Trump which I, for one, warned about seven days after he announced for the Presidency.

  22. Todd,

    “Even though some of the boomers don’t grasp it, Trump’s time in office will do more to move this country forward than any other.

    “I mean seriously, look at all the progressive women running for office against the corrupt democratic wing of the party. 😉”

    What’s wrong with those statements?

  23. Marv; those of us on this blog who have been reading your comments for the past 2 years or so, know you are too intelligent to believe the questions you put to me about someone disagreeing with my views…or anyone else’s views. I have posed my “mea culpas” more than once. You are also too intelligent to seriously be asking what is wrong about Todd’s statements.

  24. Marv,

    In re, to Todd’s statements: He is wrong on all counts because he doesn’t like anything that he didn’t think, no organization that he didn’t form and no political party that doesn’t satisfy his every whim.

    Meanwhile, if it weren’t for this horrible media I keep hearing about, we wouldn’t know anything at all. The Fourth Estate, as imperfect as it is, still tells more truth and facts than any political entity, especially the Trump entity. How would we know they are lying constantly if it weren’t for the media – such as it is – illustrating the truth. Note: I do not include Fox News as media. They are a dedicated propaganda device for this president and his unholy Republican party.

  25. I don’t know about their souls, but I do know that they are ignorant of not only history, philosophy, and morality; they are ignorant of language. It is apparent to me that Republicans and their leaders do not know the difference between an immigrant and a refugee.

    In those narrow little minds an immigrant is someone very white and educated from Europe who went to the local US Embassy and applied for a visa and further citizenship. A refugee is someone who barges into those same European countries without paperwork because they have been bombed or terrorized in their native land. And illegal immigrants? They are brown colored people crossing our southern boarder because they are hungry or afraid for their lives or both.

    Instead of Kool Aid, maybe we should be sending them dictionaries.

  26. Marv, I certainly agree with the first of those statements. Agent Orange is a caricature of authoritarianism. He’s the perfect manifestation of a personality that is just completely unadapted to modern times. Because he is and thrives on publicizing it he’s become iconic with dysfunctional politics and provides liberals with the most compelling target we have seen.

    The second statement is merely but grossly misleading. All of those “progressive women” are the Democrat Party. They are not running for anything “against” the party but represent it.

  27. Progressives praised U.S. House primary candidate Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez a challenger to Rep. Joe Crowley, a powerful player in the Democratic Party’s establishment and longtime representative of New York’s 14th District.

    “Not all Democrats are the same, and I am proud to be the only Democrat in this race that rejects all corporate money, and champions and advances improved and expanded Medicare for All, a federal jobs guarantee, tuition-free public college, and the abolition of ICE,” she said.
    ========================================================================
    Just as an aside: The Democratic Party in New York in the upcoming primary requires unaffiliated voters to register as Democrats 11 months before the primary. This rule effectively closes out “Independents” from voting in a Democratic Primary.

    I saw an ad for our resident DINO Senator Joe Donnelly. His ad was a response to an attack ad. Instead of telling us what he is for, like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez did above, his response was an attack on his opponent.

    I still have to wonder why Donnelly voted for Gorusch, Pompeo and Gina “Mommy Dearest” Haspel in confirmation hearings. Did he think he had to vote to confirm these three people to save his job??

  28. Marv, all you have to do is re-read and compare the national platforms of the DNC and the RNC, the philosophies of the parties, and ask yourself why ANY American would subscribe to the Republican Party Platform. You can read them both on the internet.

  29. Marv @ 10:10 am, and 10:48 am: I would agree with your comments. I will be sad to see you go. I did not agree with everything you have posted here, but we are not The Borg, with a collective intelligence that allows for no disagreement.

    I would say the same for Todd, even though his posts are categorized by some as rants.

  30. Marv; ya’ll quit, now! Don’t pick up your marbles and go home, you are one of this group who has the most marbles.

    Locally here in Indianapolis; WTHR-TV just broadcast live, “An Indiana Republican group just announces campaign support for Democrat Joe Donnelly.” Surely; you of all people can stand up and speak out for the Democratic party as much as this bunch of Republicans.

  31. We are not arguing voting or even philosophy – we are arguing timing. Let’s save our arguments over DNC’s procedures and substantive government until after we get a seat at the table lest we not get one and consign all three branches of government to authoritarian control in which case our expressions of First Amendment rights will be meaningless. We can look into the “Physician, heal thyself” mirror after we rescue our democracy this November.

  32. An Excerpt…

    The Horror Show

    “I’ve been thinking recently about how Americans need to be punished for the way of life they have led, encouraged, and sought to spread around the world. The problem is that the punishment is more or less wasted, since Americans are clueless regarding that way of life—defined by “What’s In It For Me?” They haven’t the faintest notion that they may have done something wrong, let alone inhuman.

    Here’s a real-life example; you may be able to find the tape of this on YouTube. It was roughly fifteen years ago; I remember the date was July 1st . What was recorded by the security camera in some hospital in Brooklyn, in a small waiting room, were two women sitting on opposite sides of the room. What we see is one of the women sliding off of her chair and onto the floor, unconscious. The other woman dully looks on at this; she has no visible emotional reaction. Occasionally, a nurse or hospital staff member looks in, sees the woman on the floor, does nothing, and moves on. It took the woman thirty minutes to die; literally no one gave a damn. Later, there was some sort of internal investigation into staff negligence; I assume it came to nothing.”

    “James Baldwin once wrote that the problem with nasty people getting their karma is that they don’t really recognize it, so the message is basically wasted on them. Consider, he says, a man who is emotionally dead. His karma is that there is no love in his life; not much of anything, really. But because he is emotionally dead, he can’t be made to see that very fact. So he lives out this awful karma in an ignorant fog. This describes a huge segment of the American population, maybe most.​’

    More Here..https://morrisberman.blogspot.com/

    Btw,I’m with you Marv. I have no more patience with the willfully obtuse.

  33. One More….Perhaps it’s our culture of meanness?

    An Excerpt..

    “There is also a culture of punching down, as commenter Lisa has observed. America has a high-violence, high-bullying society. As Lisa noted you can have a high-violence society in which it is considered unacceptable to attack the weak (doing so is viewed as cowardice), but that’s not the case in America.

    In American culture, the weak are the preferred target. Failure is punishable by homelessness, suffering, and death. Sick people sure don’t deserve proper pain medication. Poor people are poor because they “don’t add value.” If you’re poor, you definitely shouldn’t have good healthcare, because if you don’t have money, you don’t deserve money, and that’s because you’re a waste of space.

    This appears to be a result of something simple: At every stage of American life, it’s a zero or negative sum game, and who gets ahead is decided by authority figures. Need to get into a good university? You need good grades from adults, you need to have done the right extra-curricular activities, you need references from adults.”

    More Here—> http://www.ianwelsh.net/the-culture-of-meanness/

  34. One of the things most who write here have in common is a pretty clear understanding of the effects that are so evident in contemporary America. Most of us have enough history to see them in contrast with other cultural possibilities that we remember experiencing.

    If we are going to successfully change things though we have to move past effects to causes that can be changed.

    To me a short expression of the primary cause could be called “capitalist advertising”.

    “Capitalist” because the only rule of capitalism is make more money regardless of the impact on others. Anything goes as long as it attracts wealth.

    “Advertising” because that’s the capitalist way of creating and spreading culture and making more money typically begins with manipulating others to want to give you their wealth. That works for goods and services, for politics, for religion, for charity, for all human endeavors.

    Like most things cultural those in the culture can’t see it through that’s just the way people like us do things but of course there are always a significant number of alternatives.

    Can the country wrestle free from that dysfunction?

    We’ll just have to see.

  35. I can only wonder how many of the people who decried the “seizing” of Elian Gonzales, whose American-based extended family wanted to prevent his return to Cuba (where his parents remained), are loudly applauding the separation of parents from children today.

    I’m a little disappointed in progressive Christian leaders for not more forcefully condemning the blasphemy that dripped from the mouths of the attorney general and White House press secretary. Maybe they have issued statements, but it’s not getting covered by the mainstream news media.

    I fear next the AG and press secretary will be arguing that Jesus Christ himself should have been separated from Mary and Joseph a couple thousand years ago. They have forgotten Jesus’s caution that what we do to the least among us, we do to him. Or they just don’t give a damn.

  36. Walter White; thank you so much for this timely reminder of this country’s treatment of illegal immigrants. I was living in Florida when this happened; Elian Gonzales’ mother drowned when the small overloaded boat they and others were escaping Cuba on capsized. Elian and a few others survived; he had other family members here but his father lived in Cuba. His parents were divorced or separated and she had custody; his father was unaware of the planned escape from Cuba and wanted his son returned. This country and the relatives here refused to return Elian to his father against the requests and demands from his father and the Cuban government. This government decided Elian would have a better life here; this may or may not have been true but was not their decision to make. I believe it was U.S.Marshals in full battle dress who broke into relatives home armed with assault weapons and carried the terrified child out of the house. The picture of his total fear was heartbreaking and the total lack of feeling or consideration of the effects on Elian were ignored by authorities. He was eventually returned to his father.

    This government used assault weapons and military force to break into that home to kidnap ONE IMMIGRANT CHILD to KEEP him in this country. Now it is kidnapping immigrant children by the hundreds, taking them from their families and putting them into wire cages. We just can’t seem to get it right. Elian remembers what happened to him; he was interviewed a few years later at home in Cuba. What will the encaged children remember of this country in later years; the government doesn’t even know what to do with them. Are they being guarded by military with assault weapons which these children can see? Our shame deepens almost hourly as Congress sits on its butts doing nothing but watch Trump and his cohorts destroy our democracy and the all diplomacy with our allies while further enraging our enemies.

    AMERICA THE BEAUTIFUL IS NO MORE!

  37. If I were not already an atheist, Trump and Sessions would have turned me into one in the previous 17 months. Watching the evangelicals sell their imaginary souls to a hypocritical huckster who promises the one thing they care about – overturning Roe V. Wade – would clinch the deal. If they gave a damn about children, they would have been up in arms about family separations at the border by now. If one has no empathy for the poor and oppressed, no kindness for those whose lives have hit bottom, and no love to share with those desperately looking for some, he is lower on the genetic scale than the orangutans who exhibit those behaviors. If you think your toughness is what makes you better than the rest of the world, then you share the same plane of morality as Sessions and Trump and Pruitt and Carson, which is to say you lack any morality at all. We are engaged in an existential experiment to determine whether democracy can survive rule by a criminal who dreams of becoming a despot. His utter lack of any appendage resembling a soul or a heart, and the fact that he feels empathy only for himself, make him irredeemable.

  38. Sheila: you may be over-analyzing the situation. No one, and that includes Mikey Pence types, could possibly think it is acceptable behavior for American governmental employees to lie to parents of migrants seeking asylum by telling them that their children are being taken to showers for disinfection purposes, in advance of a physical examination to see if they need any treatment. That is the story they are told, to prevent them from putting up a fight or turning back. This smacks of Auschwitz and the Zyklon-B showers of cyanide gas. That’s what kidnapped Jews who didn’t appear healthy enough for hard labor, or who were old or obviously sick were told–they were getting a shower and then a doctor exam. If the trainloads of Jews knew the truth, they would have had time to plan how to overtake the guards and escape. They would have outnumbered their guards, but they had no idea what was coming, because their predecessors were already dead.

    Fast forward to the (temporary) era of Trump. Since this is reprehensible behavior, they have to throw red met to the ignoramuses who think the swamp is getting drained. The red meat consists of thumping the Bible and claiming that this is what God wants, so it’s OK. In fact, it’s the will of God, and who are we to dispute that, even for something as obviously odious as lying to parents to take their kids away and imprison them. Make no mistake: these holding facilities are prisons. No one can voluntarily leave. The base buys it, too. That’s what scares me.

  39. Marv,

    Don’t leave. Your comments are often the most sensible of the day. I have never believed that the Dems were perfect, but I believe that the current alternative is horrific. I have encouraged Todd and others to move into the local Democratic parties and plan to lead them in the right direction. My biggest problem with many of the comments here is that they offer criticism, but never alternatives.

  40. No, in answer to your question “Do they have souls to sell” …NO they do not. Plain and simple. No more be said.

  41. Peggy,

    “…..but I believe that the current alternative is horrific.”

    “My biggest problem with many of the comments here is that they offer criticism, but never alternatives.”

    …There is an alternative to all of this mess, but this isn’t the place for me to explore it any further. I posted last week, that I haven’t been able to create enough trust in the past three years as a commentator on this blog. This is not my blog. I’m confident that the Democratic Party can prevail in November without having to cover-up its weaknesses. The answer lies in the TRUTH, but the DNC led Democratic Party is too compromised to deliver it. So it must come from the OUTSIDE.

    I would strongly recommend a reading of “The Disappearance of the Outside” by Andrei Codrescu (Addison-Wesley Publishing Company, Reading, Massachusetts, 1990).

    Wishing everyone the best, Marv.

  42. I am reminded of the formation of the Deutsche Christen churches in Germany in the 1930s. They promoted Nazism, adopting Aryanism and anti-semitism, even to the point of advocating removing the Old Testimate from the Bible. They also named Hitler as the head of the church. At one point 80% of the German churches were involved, choosing power over discipleship. Sound familiar?

  43. I understand that AG Session’s given name is actually “Jefferson”…

    https://www.whitehouse.gov/people/jeff-sessions/

    This may be icky-picky…but I have a vested interest in distancing Sessions and his abhorrent actions from myself even if it’s only to point out that we don’t share a name…

    For you, it will increase the credibility of your excellent piece if you call him by his correct name…

    All the best,

    JSN

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