by baldilocks

Have you ever felt as though crazy things were happening and you were caught up in the midst of it, but felt powerless to stop the crazy thing or to extricate yourself from it? To me, that’s what it feels like, sometimes, to view the political climate these days. And, to be honest, it has felt this way for the last ten years.

As most know, I believe in the God of the Bible, and therefore, believe that He controls things. But here is something else He does: He allows things to happen, and especially allows feces to happen when we refuse to communicate with Him and to accept His protection. This country did this very thing in 1963 and, looking back, it’s obvious—at least to me—that He has allowed one simple thing to happen in this country: disordered and prideful thinking. And it’s present among many ordinary people as well as among most leaders and wannabe leaders.

I could go down the list of examples of disordered and prideful thinking since the specified point in time, but I’d like to use just one example which covers the entire 53-year period and it’s this: all too many Americans believe that one person in the office of the President of the United States will make everything that’s wrong in the country all better.

This is called Strong Man politics and it is the basis for nearly every form of tyranny that has ever existed, especially in the last century.

However, even after we removed ourselves from under God’s protective wing all those years ago, America seemed mostly immune to this type of thinking, but it has always been an undercurrent, one which seem to fully flower in 2008. But only half of the country was caught up in that wave.

Now it’s other half’s turn. Since we refuse the real King, we tend to look for another. To wit:


We keep looking for a master among flawed humans (BIRM) and wonder why we keep failing. It’s emblematic of insanity.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng blogs at baldilocks. (Her older blog is located here.) Her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game, was published in 2012. Her second novel, tentatively titled, Arlen’s Harem, will be done in 2016. Follow her on Twitter.

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Buzzfeed reports the  Trump’s campaign has moved to background check volunteers:

Donald Trump’s campaign informed aspiring volunteers Sunday night that they would have to pass background checks and sign non-disclosure agreements if they wanted serve in the Trump Tower Call Center in Manhattan.

“We need to make sure our call center is a safe environment for all of our volunteers and staff,” campaign organizers wrote in an email to volunteers, which was passed along to BuzzFeed News.

Political phone-banking, in which volunteers are organized to gather in a designated location and make calls to prospective voters, is common practice in presidential campaigns. Less common is the “on-boarding and briefing” apparently required by Team Trump.

This is unusual in the sense that most campaigns are usually dying for any volunteers they can get.

However unlike most people running for office Trump is very familiar with how media works and this move preempts two rather obvious Democrat/media tactics

1. By doing background checks it stops the following headlines the MSM is dying to produce:

Trump call center staffed with Illegal Immigrants

Violent criminals abound in Trump call centers

These headlines would invariably produces stories throughout the Democrat/MSM media complex, then there would be commentary from Democrat leaning pundits on these stories, then stories about seeking comment from the Trump campaign, then commentary from the aforementioned pundits on seeking comment, then the stories about the comment or lack thereof, then the commentary about the comments or lack thereof and the inevitable debate question about double standards.

2.  By requiring non-disclosure agreements  you are establishing a personal cost to any MSM/DNC plant who the opposition might send.

As anyone who has worked in a call center or in a group can tell you such environments are full of conversation, quips, occasional trash talk, conversation, speculation and rumor. Any or all of these things are easily spun to “create” a news story or expose of the “real” story behind the Trump campaign.

Now a non disclosure agreement in itself would normally not be much of an impediment to a newspaper or a Democrat campaign looking to score a hit, but if you combine Donald Trump’s well-earned reputation for litigious behavior with his wealth to absorb legal costs and his desire to get back at such person an individual has to consider the possibility that Trump might decide keeping such a person in court for a decade with a judgement that while a drop in the bucket for Trump could be life altering for them as the reward for a minor political jab.

Would you risk it?

There are many disadvantages to Trump as the GOP nominee. Lack of media savvy is not one of them.  Trump’s people have figured out it’s better to have a one day story on background checks than weeks of stories generated by volunteers planted in the Trump campaign to produce weeks of stories designed to damage the campaign.

You know the Boston Globe has for years had the best coverage of Baseball period, with John Allen they now have the best Catholic reporter in the world and he proved it again:

Pope Francis can be understood as a living, breathing embodiment of the “both/and” instinct that’s so much a part of Catholic DNA, but which is increasingly difficult to understand in a world where false dichotomies and “wedge issues” are the political coin of the realm.

Historically, as Pope Benedict XVI once put it, Catholicism has been the great Christian tradition of “both/and.” When Protestantism raised the question of whether Scripture or tradition is the basis of authority, Catholicism answered “both.” Likewise, when Martin Luther asked whether salvation is from faith or works, the Catholic answer again was “both.”

Francis is very much like that.

and he gives an excellent example of the dual nature of the church

A gay couple wants to enroll their child in a Catholic school. One option would be to say no, on the grounds of causing scandal. Another is to say yes, on the basis that some contact with the faith is better than none. Both are consistent with church teaching, but they give off different vibes.

Or to put it another way Christ over and over warns about the Justice that will come if one doesn’t repent:

Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you accursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me no drink, a stranger and you gave me no welcome, naked and you gave me no clothing, ill and in prison, and you did not care for me.’ Then they will answer and say, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or ill or in prison, and not minister to your needs?’

He will answer them, ‘Amen, I say to you, what you did not do for one of these least ones, you did not do for me.’ And these will go off to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.”

Matthew 25:41-46

Yet when dealing with an actual sinner with actual sin the mercy pours out as in the gospel for this week:

Jesus went to the Mount of Olives.

But early in the morning he arrived again in the temple area, and all the people started coming to him, and he sat down and taught them. Then the scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in adultery and made her stand in the middle. They said to him, “Teacher, this woman was caught in the very act of committing adultery. Now in the law, Moses commanded us to stone such women. So what do you say?” They said this to test him, so that they could have some charge to bring against him. Jesus bent down and began to write on the ground with his finger. But when they continued asking him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let the one among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.” Again he bent down and wrote on the ground. And in response, they went away one by one, beginning with the elders.

So he was left alone with the woman before him. Then Jesus straightened up and said to her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” She replied, “No one, sir.” Then Jesus said, “Neither do I condemn you. Go, and from now on do not sin any more.

John :1-11

God will give us our entire lives to repent and will give us every chance to do so, but not a moment more.

Somehow I suspect Francis thinks the same and wants to do the same.