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Trump and the Christian Fascists

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1 Trump and the Christian Fascists on 7/25/2017, 8:59 pm

Chris Hedges--

"Donald Trump's ideological vacuum, the more he is isolated and attacked, is being filled by the Christian right. This Christianized fascism, with its network of megachurches, schools, universities and law schools and its vast radio and television empire, is a potent ally for a beleaguered White House. The Christian right has been organizing and preparing to take power for decades. If the nation suffers another economic collapse, which is probably inevitable, another catastrophic domestic terrorist attack or a new war, President Trump's ability to force the Christian right's agenda on the public and shut down dissent will be dramatically enhanced. In the presidential election, Trump had 81 percent of white evangelicals behind him.

Trump’s moves to restrict abortion, defund Planned Parenthood, permit discrimination against LGBT people in the name of "religious liberty" and allow churches to become active in politics by gutting the Johnson Amendment, along with his nominations of judges championed by the Federalist Society and his call for a ban on Muslim immigrants, have endeared him to the Christian right. He has rolled back civil rights legislation and business and environmental regulations. He has elevated several stalwarts of the Christian right into power—Mike Pence to the vice presidency, Jeff Sessions to the Justice Department, Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court, Betsy DeVos to the Department of Education, Tom Price to Health and Human Services and Ben Carson to Housing and Urban Development. He embraces the white supremacy, bigotry, American chauvinism, greed, religious intolerance, anger and racism that define the Christian right.

More important, Trump's disdain for facts and his penchant for magical thinking and conspiracy theories mesh well with the worldview of the Christian right, which sees itself as under attack by the satanic forces of secular humanism embodied in the media, academia, the liberal establishment, Hollywood and the Democratic Party. In this worldview, climate change is not real, Barack Obama is a Muslim and millions of people voted illegally in the 2016 election.

The followers of the Christian right, like Trump and his brain trust, including Stephen Bannon, are Manicheans. They see the world in black and white, good and evil, them and us. Trump's call in his speech in Poland for a crusade against the godless hoards of Muslims fleeing from the wars and chaos we created replicates the view of the Christian right. Christian right leaders in a sign of support went to the White House on July 10 to pray over Trump. Two days later Pat Robertson showed up there to interview the president for his Christian Broadcasting Network.

If the alliance between these zealots and the government succeeds, it will snuff out the last vestiges of American democracy.

On the surface it appears to be incongruous that the Christian right would rally behind a slick New York real estate developer who is a very public serial philanderer and adulterer, has no regard for the truth, is consumed by greed, does not appear to read or know the Bible, routinely defrauds and cheats his investors and contractors, expresses a crude misogyny and an even cruder narcissism and appears to yearn for despotism. In fact, these are the very characteristics that define most of the leaders of the Christian right. Trump has preyed on desperate people through the thousands of slot machines in his casinos, his sham university and his real estate deals. Megachurch pastors prey on their followers by extracting "seed offerings," "love gifts," tithes and donations and by selling miracle healings along with "prayer clothes,”"self-help books, audio and video recordings and even protein shakes. Pastors have established within their megachurches, as Trump did in his businesses, despotic fiefdoms. They cannot be challenged or questioned any more than an omnipotent Trump could be challenged on the reality television show "The Apprentice." And they seek to replicate their little tyrannies on a national scale, with white men in charge.

The personal piety of most of the ministers who lead the Christian right is a facade. Their private lives are usually marked by hedonistic squalor that includes mansions, private jets, limousines, retinues of bodyguards, personal assistants and servants, shopping sprees, lavish vacations and sexual escapades that rival those carried out by Trump. And because they run "churches," in many cases church funds pay for their tax-free empires, including their extravagant lifestyles. They also engage in the nepotism found in the Trump organization, elevating family members to prominent or highly paid positions and passing on the businesses to their children.

The Christian right's scandals, which give a glimpse into the sordid lives of these multimillionaire pastors, are legion. Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker's Praise the Lord Club, for example, raked in as much as $1 million a week before Jim Bakker went to prison for nearly five years. He was convicted of fraud and other charges in 1989 because of a $158 million scheme in which followers paid for vacations that never materialized. As the Bakker empire came apart, there also were accusations of drug use and rape. Tammy Faye died in 2007, and now Jim Bakker is back, peddling survival food for the end days and telling his significantly reduced television audience that anyone who opposes Trump is the Antichrist..."

https://www.commondreams.org/views/2017/07/24/trump-and-christian-fascists

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2 Re: Trump and the Christian Fascists on 7/25/2017, 11:21 pm

Floridatexan wrote:Their private lives are usually marked by hedonistic squalor that includes mansions, private jets, limousines, retinues of bodyguards, personal assistants and servants, shopping sprees, lavish vacations and sexual escapades that rival those carried out by Trump. And because they run "churches," in many cases church funds pay for their tax-free empires, including their extravagant lifestyles.
https://www.commondreams.org/views/2017/07/24/trump-and-christian-fascists

Mansions? Private jets? Shopping sprees and sexual escapades? And it's all tax free, you say?

Where do I sign up? Sounds like the American Dream to me.

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3 Re: Trump and the Christian Fascists on 7/26/2017, 1:46 am

I find this bit from the above piece particularly valid:

More important, Trump's disdain for facts and his penchant for magical thinking and conspiracy theories mesh well with the worldview of the Christian right, which sees itself as under attack by the satanic forces of secular humanism embodied in the media, academia, the liberal establishment, Hollywood and the Democratic Party. In this worldview, climate change is not real, Barack Obama is a Muslim and millions of people voted illegally in the 2016 election.


All one has to do is spend a couple of days listening to hard core right wing talk radio to know this is all too true.

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4 Re: Trump and the Christian Fascists on 7/26/2017, 7:00 am

RealLindaL wrote:I find this bit from the above piece particularly valid:

More important, Trump's disdain for facts and his penchant for magical thinking and conspiracy theories mesh well with the worldview of the Christian right, which sees itself as under attack by the satanic forces of secular humanism embodied in the media, academia, the liberal establishment, Hollywood and the Democratic Party. In this worldview, climate change is not real, Barack Obama is a Muslim and millions of people voted illegally in the 2016 election.


All one has to do is spend a couple of days listening to hard core right wing talk radio to know this is all too true.

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Good article and very well written FT and Linda you are correct in that we are witness to a phenomena with devastating consequences to our country, it's difficult to comprehend its unfolding before our eyes . . .

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5 Re: Trump and the Christian Fascists on 7/26/2017, 1:23 pm

Excellent article FLTX! It is always amazing to me that outwardly devout Christians, who know their scriptures could be attracted to a person with Trump's history and lack of character. It is not as if the Bible repeatedly tells people to acquire worldly goods and to take advantage of the weak and needy among us; but somehow the "Christians" fall in behind the old Two Corinthians sham artist. When will the scales fall from their eyes?! LOL

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6 Re: Trump and the Christian Fascists on 7/26/2017, 2:24 pm

When I looked up the now famous scripture quoting blunder to see what he'd said I came across this gem from Falwell.

You know that Donald Trump doesn’t believe in the need to be politically correct. Now you know that he doesn’t need to be biblically correct, either.


At an appearance at Liberty University on Monday, the GOP presidential candidate prompted snickers from well-versed students at the religious-oriented institution when he referenced Paul’s second letter to the Corinthians in the New Testament. Most people who darkened the doors of churches refer to it as “Second Corinthians.”

But not Trump: “Two Corinthians, 3:17, that’s the whole ballgame. ‘Where the Spirit of the Lord is, right? Where the spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.’”

In the Washington Post, Liberty University President Jerry Falwell Jr. explains:

It’s not that Trump is the most religious or pious of the candidates, Falwell said, although he described Trump as a “servant leader” who “lives a life of helping others, as Jesus taught.” It’s that Trump is a savvy businessman who “speaks the truth publicly, even if it is uncomfortable for people to hear,” and who is not a puppet of major donors.
We would simply refer you to One Corinthians 13:1:

“Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.”

http://politics.blog.ajc.com/2016/01/19/donald-trump-two-corinthians-317-thats-the-whole-ballgame-right/

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7 Re: Trump and the Christian Fascists on 7/26/2017, 3:01 pm

donald trump is Jesus to American followers of Jesus who've totally rejected the teachings of Jesus.

I don't believe trump is the Antichrist but I do believe Jesus is the anti-trump.

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8 Re: Trump and the Christian Fascists on 7/26/2017, 4:26 pm

polecat wrote:donald trump is Jesus to American followers of Jesus who've totally rejected the teachings of Jesus.

I don't believe trump is the Antichrist but I do believe Jesus is the anti-trump.




On the other hand kushner does own 666 fifth avenue, often called the devils tower for years. Maybe he's the Antichrist's father in law.

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