Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Mainstream Media’s ‘Victimhood’

Exclusive: Just weeks ago, the mainstream U.S. media was leading the charge against alleged “fake news” and for a blacklist of independent news sites for spreading “Russian propaganda.” Now, under fire from President Trump, these major media outlets are finding…

NATO’s Strange Addition of Montenegro

Exclusive: Official Washington’s New Cold Warriors are painting NATO’s admission of tiny Montenegro in the stark black-and-white colors of a heroic stand against “Russian aggression” but that misses the real reasons why it’s a bad idea, writes Jonathan Marshall. By…

A Crackdown on the Poor and Hungry

Concerned about “quality of life” appearances, cities across America are cracking down on the homeless and the hungry, reports Dennis J Bernstein. By Dennis J Bernstein Activist and author Keith McHenry, who co-founded Food Not Bombs in Boston in 1980, says…

Monday, February 27, 2017

Liberal Christians, Why Not Stand up for Your Own Faith for Once?

In my podcast today I extend on a conversation we began a few days ago. This past weekend, there were dozens of “I Am Muslim Too” rallies across the country, where people who were not necessarily Muslim still marched with signs saying “I am Muslim” in solidarity with Muslims who, they claim, are being persecuted by Trump’s proposed travel restrictions.

It stands to reason that a large portion of the people who marched for Muslims with “I am Muslim” signs were Christian. In fact, after I wrote about it, I heard from a good number of self-professed Christians who confirmed that they did participate. 

There are two problems here: The first, as I said, is that a Christian may not ever proclaim a faith identity other than his own. It doesn’t matter if you’re being “symbolic.” To say “I am Muslim” when in fact you are Christian is to, in effect, renounce your faith. 

Second, and this is my larger focus today, how many of these Christians who are not “standing for Muslims” have ever in their lives stood for Christ and their church?

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Don’t Complain About ‘Rape Culture’ If You’re OK With Boys in the Girl’s Locker Room

President Trump this week rescinded the rule unconstitutionally imposed by Obama’s White House requiring that all schools across the country allow gender confused boys (or any boy who feels like pretending he’s confused that day) to invade the bathrooms and locker rooms of their female classmates.

Leftists, of course, reacted as if Trump had taken some extraordinary and unprecedented step, when actually Trump was simply dialing back an extraordinary and unprecedented step recently taken by his predecessor. It’s always interesting to note just how quickly an item on the Leftist agenda goes from unimportant to utterly crucial to the survival of the species. Five years ago, nobody, including Obama, was talking about bathrooms or “transgenderism.” None of these Leftists, who are now quite certain that bathroom segregation is a violation of human rights, had anything to say on the subject prior to about the year 2012. Suddenly it was discovered that boys can be girls, and if they are not treated as girls in every aspect of life, they will literally die. Nobody can say how this was discovered; we’re expected to accept it as a matter of faith.

Sure, cross dressing existed prior to Obama’s second term, and the word “transgenderism” was familiar to some, but the vast majority of the human species did not believe that biological sex was some kind of irrelevant or incidental detail. The vast majority still don’t believe it, but liberals have arbitrarily decided that we should, even if they didn’t themselves believe it up until 78 seconds ago. I say all of this just to remind everyone that Leftists started this bathroom fight on their own and for no coherent reason, so when they panic over Trump’s “attack on transgender rights,” what they’re really panicking over is the Right’s refusal to immediately cave to their every deranged whim. They complain of something being “taken away” which they just a moment ago imposed without the consent of most of the people they imposed it upon.

With that established, there’s another point that bears frequent reiteration: The very people who so often claim that we’re living in a “rape culture,” and who are apt to cry harassment when a man so much as compliments a woman in the wrong way, and who often say that America is such a misogynistic hellhole that women can’t even walk down the street without fearing assault or rape, are the same ones who tell young girls to shut up and stop complaining when men with penises stroll into their locker rooms and bathrooms. In every other context, men are chastised for their “male privilege” if they act in a way that makes women uncomfortable — even if the behavior in question is completely innocent and non-threatening — but if a girl is uncomfortable looking at penises in her locker room, suddenly she’s the one who gets yelled at for being inconsiderate. In the minds of our nation’s Leftists, a man has persecuted a woman when he spreads his legs too wide on the subway, but if he disrobes in front of her in the bathroom and she feels uneasy, it is she who has persecuted him.

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A Nazi Skeleton in the Family Closet

Exclusive: Canada’s fiercely anti-Russian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland says her Ukrainian grandfather struggled “to return freedom and democracy to Ukraine,” but she leaves out that he was a Nazi propagandist justifying the slaughter of Jews, writes Arina Tsukanova. By Arina…

The Risk of Baiting Trump on Russia

In the drive to damage President Trump, American liberals have seized on his desire for more cooperation with Russia, baiting him as “a Putin puppet,” a dangerous strategy, says Norman Solomon. By Norman Solomon Four weeks into Donald Trump’s presidency, New…

In Case You Missed…

Some of our notable stories in January, focusing on the U.S. presidential transfer of power, the issue of alleged Russian interference in the election and the furor over “fake news.” *“The War Against Alternative Information” by Rick Sterling, Jan. 1,…

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Assessing Diversity on Russian TV

The U.S. view of Russian media is that it is all propaganda all the time to keep the Russian people in line, but it actually encourages diverse and even hostile opinions, says Gilbert Doctorow. By Gilbert Doctorow Anyone looking into…

Risks in Rush to Crush ISIS

President Trump’s vow to crush the Islamic State quickly may lead to hasty actions that could compound the problem rather than solve it, notes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar. By Paul R. Pillar A couple of tendencies that are all…

Trump’s Trouble with the Truth

Although occasionally blurting out inconvenient truths, President Trump has established an early record of remarkable falsehoods, raising doubts about his grasp of reality, says Lawrence Davidson. By Lawrence Davidson During the presidential campaign, I often referred to Donald Trump as…

Saturday, February 25, 2017

How ‘New Cold Warriors’ Cornered Trump

Exclusive: The U.S. intelligence community’s extraordinary campaign of leaks claiming improper ties between President Trump’s team and Russia seeks to ensure a lucrative New Cold War by blocking detente, reports Gareth Porter. By Gareth Porter Opponents of the Trump administration…

Trump’s Embattled ‘Revolution’

President Trump’s domestic “revolution” on behalf of “forgotten” Americans requires a complementary foreign policy of reduced warfare and a weaker dollar, explains ex-British diplomat Alastair Crooke. By Alastair Crooke Pat Buchanan – perhaps the U.S. politician with the greatest feel…

Friday, February 24, 2017

Who’s Behind US Downward-Mobility?

President Trump blames Mexicans, Chinese and other foreigners for the plight of downwardly mobile Americans but the real culprits are his corporatist pals who grab the lion’s share of the wealth from U.S. global dominance, says JP Sottile. By JP…

Sleepwalking into a New Arms Race

The West’s current hysteria about “Russian aggression” ignores the long history of real Western aggression against Russia, now underscored by plans to sharply increase spending on nuclear weapons, note Chuck Spinney and Pierre Sprey. By Chuck Spinney and Pierre Sprey…

Syrian War Propaganda at the Oscars

The Western-backed war in Syria, like the invasion of Iraq, was so smothered by propaganda that truth was not only the first casualty but has been steadily suffocated for five years, now reaching the Oscars, says Rick Sterling. By Rick…

Thursday, February 23, 2017

How Trump Could Be a Truth-teller

Exclusive: Viewed as uncaring about facts, President Trump could change his image by releasing important information about recent turning-point moments that President Obama chose to hide from the people, writes Robert Parry. By Robert Parry One positive thing about a…

Israel’s Dead-End Dilemma

President Trump says he’s okay with a one- or two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict – whatever the two parties want – but without forceful U.S. intervention, neither option is feasible, says John Chuckman. By John Chuckman With its steady…

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Dear Conservatives, We Need to Defend Principles, Not Personalities

I’m not looking to jump on the dog pile, but an important lesson must be learned here. Milo Yiannopolous has been uninvited from CPAC and rightfully condemned for his comments promoting the sexual abuse of children. His fans will hail him as a martyr for free speech because of this, but if he’s a martyr for anything, it’s degeneracy and pederasty. He had the right to say what he said, but he was wrong for saying it and wrong for believing it — extremely, catastrophically wrong — and decent people have the right and the duty to make that clear.

As for what he said, it bears repeating because it underscores the larger point that I feel must be made. Here are his own words, in reference to “sexually mature” kids as young as 13, transcribed verbatim:

“This arbitrary and oppressive idea of consent, which totally destroys the understanding that many of us have of the complexities and subtleties and complicated nature of many relationships. People are messy and complex, and in the homosexual world particularly some of those relationships between younger boys and older men, the sort of coming of age relationships, the relationships in which those older men help those young boys discover who they are, and give them security and safety and provide them with love and, sort of, a rock.”

He elaborates later:

“In the gay world, some of the most important, enriching, and incredibly life affirming, shaping relationships between younger boys and older men, they can be hugely positive experiences for those young boys.” 

What you see above is not a joke, neither is it him simply discussing his own experiences, nor is it some strange attempt at satire, but a statement of principle. He believes, in principle, that “older men” can “enrich” and “affirm” some “young boys” by having sex with them. That’s the argument he plainly made. You can believe your eyes, ears, and brain on this matter, or you can lie. Those are your only two choices.

And therein lies the problem. Predictably, shamefully, a number of “conservatives” — including a portion of my own readership — have chosen the latter. After I spoke out against Milo’s promotion of child sex abuse last night, the emails and comments came flooding in from people who believe that criticizing Milo, for literally any reason, is a treasonable offense. I have actually lost readers — conservative readers, supposedly — because I don’t think it’s OK to describe sex with a child as “a hugely positive experience for those young boys.”

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NYT’s Fake News about Fake News

Exclusive: The West’s anti-Russian propaganda links Moscow to the blight of “fake news” but the evidence doesn’t connect the two. So, The New York Times makes the case with its own “fake news,” reports Robert Parry. By Robert Parry A grave…

California Resists Trump on Immigration

President Trump’s crackdown on America’s 11 million undocumented immigrants is raising alarm among that community but faces its stiffest resistance in California where leaders vow defiance, reports Dennis J Bernstein. By Dennis J Bernstein California Governor Jerry Brown departed in…

Palestinians See More of the Same

President Trump has offered mixed signals about precisely what his attitude toward the Israeli-Palestinian conflict will be, but Palestinians see little prospects for meaningful improvement, reports Dennis J Bernstein. By Dennis J Bernstein Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s recent visit…

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

The West’s Moral Hypocrisy on Yemen

Exclusive: The West’s “humanitarian interventionists” howl over bloody conflicts when an adversary can be blamed but go silent when an ally is doing the killing, such as Saudi Arabia in Yemen, reportss Jonathan Marshall. By Jonathan Marshall Only a few…

Trump’s One-State Openness on Israel

The ugly reality in Israel/Palestine is that the Zionist leaders are engaging in a slow-walk ethnic cleansing of Palestinians, a crime that can only be averted now by a secular singular state, says ex-CIA official Graham E. Fuller. By Graham…

Towards a New Trade Policy

International trade deals have lost their consensus support as more workers view them as anathema to good-paying jobs, requiring the U.S. politicians to rethink these strategies, writes Andrew Spannaus. By Andrew Spannaus On Jan. 23, President Donald Trump signed an…

Monday, February 20, 2017

Was Thomas Jefferson a Rapist?

Exclusive: As Thomas Jefferson’s apologists retreat in their denials about Sally Hemings, the new defensive line is to assert that Jefferson’s sex with his slave girl was “a relationship,” not another r-word, writes Robert Parry. By Robert Parry On President’s…

You Aren’t Being ‘Shamed’ Just Because We Expect You to Be a Civilized Adult

By some stroke of misfortune I happened across this headline from People Magazine: “Yoga Instructor Practices in White Pants While Free-Bleeding to Make a Point About Period Shame.”

I only hope aliens from an advanced civilization aren’t able to access our Internet. Surely, if they saw this, or pretty much anything else that gets posted to the internet on a daily basis, they’d correctly surmise that we are a race of dangerous lunatics. Their only recourse at that point would be to incinerate us with their alien Death Ray.

On second thought, maybe I do hope they can access our internet.

The article tells us about a woman named Steph Gongora who takes inspiring Instagram videos of herself bleeding into her pants while she does yoga poses. Her latest video has this caption:

“I am a woman, therefore, I bleed. It’s messy, it’s painful, it’s terrible and it’s beautiful. And yet, you wouldn’t know. Because I hide it. I bury things at the bottom of the trash. I breathe, ragged and awkward through the cramps, all the while holding onto this tight-lipped, painted-on smile… Hundreds of years of culture have made us embarrassed to bleed, have left us feeling dirty and ashamed…”

I haven’t investigated the rest of Steph’s work, so I’m not sure how far she takes this philosophy. One wonders if she’s launched similar campaigns to fight back against society’s merciless shaming of other bodily functions. Just imagine the possibilities:

“I ate Taco Bell, therefore, I have diarrhea. It’s messy, it’s painful, it’s terrible and it’s beautiful. And yet, you wouldn’t know. Because I hide it. I flush things down the toilet. Hundreds of years of culture have made us embarrassed to defecate in our pants, have left us feeling dirty and ashamed…”

A Shaming For Everyone

You think I’m joking, but “poop shaming” is actually a thing. There’s a shaming for everything these days. Every week there’s some new group of drama queens whining that they’re being “shamed” for this or that.

As we know, the two most common anti-shaming efforts involve overweight people gallivanting around in various states of undress in order to fight “body shaming” (there are 12 types of body shaming, by the way), and promiscuous women also gallivanting around in various states of undress in order to fight “slut shaming” (after a while you begin to suspect that anti-shame warriors are just looking for an excuse to get naked). But that’s just the tip of the iceberg of shame. Shaming comes in all shapes and forms and styles and flavors. There’s skinny jean shamingsingle shaming, formula shaming, house shaming, divorce shaming, tattoo shaming, selfie shaming, reader shamingsalad shaming, snack shaming, hook up shaming, millennial shaming, sweat shaming, sleep shamingfood stamp shaming, Instagram filter shamingPokemon shamingpajama shaming, phone shaming, riot shaming, leisure time shaming, baby shamingvacation shaming, stoner shaming, body modification shaming, and music shaming. Specifically for women, along with period shaming, there’s also abortion shaming, pole dance shaming, sorority shaming, shirtless shaming, armpit hair shaming, and alcohol shaming.

And for those who shame all of this shaming there’s shame shaming, which often leads to shame shaming shaming and even shame shaming shaming shaming, which gives rise to the shaming of shame shamers who shame those who shame shamers for shame shaming shaming. We’re all just ashamed all the time, it seems, but not so ashamed that we won’t post heroic pictures of ourselves doing whatever it is we claim we’re persecuted for doing. And, although society supposedly “shames” this activity, we’re sure to get 100 thousand likes and 50 thousand shares and 10 thousand laudatory comments.

It’s Called A “Different Opinion”

Here’s a good rule of thumb: If you are roundly congratulated for doing something, society is not shaming you. Often, when we complain of being “shamed,” we really mean that a few random people have expressed mild disapproval or disagreement with some trivial, unimportant habit or preference of ours. Yeah, some people don’t like your pants or your tattoos; some people think you read silly books and play dumb games; some people find your taste in music and fashion horrid, and guess what? They’re allowed to have those opinions. They’re probably right, anyway, but that’s beside the point. The point is that you haven’t been victimized or injured because someone differed with you.

You haven’t been “shamed” just because your tastes aren’t shared by every single person you meet. You’ve simply discovered the reality that other people are other people. They may have preferences that differ from your own. They may, God forbid, verbalize those preferences, even going so far as to offer some critique of yours. Perhaps their criticism is correct, perhaps it’s wrong, perhaps nobody is exactly right or wrong and it really is just a matter of taste. Whatever the case, your job, as a rational adult, is to endure this encounter with the otherness of another person without collapsing into a puddle of tears over it. Besides, if you do collapse into a puddle of tears, you run the risk of being cry shamed. And, oh, what a shame that would be.

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Marriage is Not an ‘Equal Partnership’

Something a little different on the podcast today. Taking a break from politics to discuss a topic closer to home and more relevant to our lives. This is not marriage “advice” — I’m not equipped to be doling advice out — but it is an observation.

These days it’s common to hear people say that our marriages should be “equal.” An “equal partnership,” they call it, which makes it sound like you’re starting a law firm together rather than entering into a sacred covenant. I think this notion of marriage is false, and from my own experience I can say that our marriage has never once been helped by trying to “make things equal.” That’s what squabbling siblings worry about, not loving and self-giving spouses.

Marriage cannot be equal, anyway, because the spouses are not equal. Two things are equal when they are the same, but a husband and wife can never be the same, nor should they try to be. That doesn’t mean one is better than the other, just that they are unique. An apple is not equal to an orange, but nobody would claim that one or the other is inherently superior.

If husband and wife are not equal, then they will not contribute in ways that are exactly equal. They do different things, bring different skills and perspectives to the table, and shoulder different burdens in different ways. These things can’t be exactly quantified and compared, and whenever we attempt to do that, we are being selfish and childish, and harming our marriages in the process.

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Trump’s Foreign Policy: Retreat or Rout?

With President Trump’s foreign-policy team sounding a lot like President Obama’s, the new question is whether Trump has caved in to Official Washington’s powers-that-be or is biding his time for a big move, asks Gilbert Doctorow. By Gilbert Doctorow After…

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Democratic Ex-Dove Proposes War on Iran

Exclusive: The Democrats’ rush to rebrand themselves as super-hawks is perhaps best illustrated by the once-dovish Rep. Alcee Hastings proposing stand-by authorization for the President to attack Iran, reports Nicolas J S Davies. By Nicolas J S Davies Rep. Alcee…

Challenging Klobuchar on Ukraine War

As Democrats compete to become the new War Party – pushing for a dangerous confrontation with nuclear-armed Russia – some constituents are objecting, as Mike Madden did in a letter to Sen. Amy Klobuchar. From Mike Madden (of St. Paul,…

Trump’s ‘One-Night Stand’ Diplomacy

Despite his reputation as a deal-maker, President Trump’s first foray into the thicket of Israel-Palestine peace talks suggests he has no clue what direction to take or the long-term consequences, notes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar. By Paul R. Pillar…

Saturday, February 18, 2017

The Did-You-Talk-to-Russians Witch Hunt

Exclusive: Democrats, liberals and media pundits – in their rush to take down President Trump – are pushing a New McCarthyism aimed at Americans who have talked to Russians, risking a new witch hunt, reports Robert Parry. By Robert Parry…

Immigrant Round-ups Stir Fears

During last fall’s campaign, Donald Trump vowed to get rid of the “bad hombres” among the 11 million undocumented people in the U.S., but recent raids appear far less targeted, reports Dennis J Bernstein.   By Dennis J Bernstein President…

Friday, February 17, 2017

Democrats, Liberals Catch McCarthyistic Fever

Exclusive: Democrats and liberals are so angry about President Trump that they are turning to McCarthyistic tactics without regard to basic fairness or the need to avoid a costly and dangerous New Cold War, notes Daniel Lazare. By Daniel Lazare…

Jeff Sessions’s Dubious Refugee Math

A rational approach to life cannot eliminate all risk – and trying to creates its own dangers – a reality many Americans forgot post-9/11 and that runs counter to President Trump’s Muslim-targeting entry ban, as Arnold R. Isaacs describes. By…

Millennials, ‘Casual’ Sex Is Not Casual. It’s Immature and Selfish.

The title of a recent article in USA Today says it all: “Survey: Sleeping together before a first date is a-OK, but cracked phones are a put off.” The story focuses primarily on the attitudes of my fellow millennials towards dating and relationships.

Read and behold the death of western civilization:

Millennials are 48% more likely to have sex before a first date than all other generations of singles… Helen Fisher, a biological anthropologist and chief scientific adviser to Match, [says]… “Sex before the first date could be a sex interview, where they want to know if they want to spend time with this person… In many ways sex has become a less intimate part of dating… We used to think of sex as you crossed the line now you are in an intimate zone, but now sex is almost a given and it’s not the intimate part…”

But don’t get the impression that we millennials have no standards. We do demand that our partners treat their phones with respect, if not their bodies and souls:

“Singles don’t like people who have a cracked phone, or an old phone or those who use a clicking sound when typing,” she says, citing the survey. 

Ah yes, I’ll never forget when I first laid eyes on my wife’s immaculate phone and thought to myself, “I want to spend the rest of my life with this woman. At least until her phone breaks.”

Of course, the article doesn’t tell the rest of the story. The part where these same people complain incessantly to their friends about how it’s so difficult to find a man or woman who isn’t a shallow, self-interested jerk. The part where they quickly grow bored with each new partner. The part where they conduct these “sex interviews” but somehow keep hiring the wrong candidates. Everyone is lying on their resumes, they conclude.

They tread water like this for years, deathly afraid of marriage, stuck in an endless string of casual sexual encounters and relationships so superficial and ridiculous that they won’t even call them relationships. We’re just “hanging out,” say the grown adults as they rapidly approach middle age.

They tell themselves that this is just how relationships are, this is how people are, this is how it has to be. They never stop to consider that it isn’t some inherent flaw in human nature preventing them from discovering a deeper and more mature bond with another human being. Rather, it’s their own flaws. Curable flaws, thankfully. But if they are to cure them, if they are to change the parts of them which lead constantly into these cheap and unfulfilling hook ups, they have to drastically adjust their attitude towards sex.

There are a great many problems with viewing sex as “casual” or a “given” — something that isn’t intimate, a mere interview strategy or recreational activity — but we’ll focus on just a few:

1. “Casual” sex is impossible.

A high five is casual. Waving hello is casual. Small talk is casual. Treating sex like a casual greeting doesn’t make it casual. It just makes you immature and selfish.

Life offers some clues as to whether a particular activity is casual or not. Here’s a good rule of thumb, though it may not work in every case: If you dress up to do something, such as attend an Easter service or a fancy dinner, it’s probably not casual. Likewise, if you completely undress to do something, such as have sex, it’s probably not casual. Casual things are things that you can do in any attire, anywhere, with anyone, in front of anyone. You may have a casual conversation with an acquaintance at the park in the middle of the day. But if you have sex with an acquaintance at the park in the middle of the day, you’ll find yourself in jail. Why is that? Because sex is intimate and private. People who actually would have sex in the same places and in the same contexts that they’d have a conversation are called sex offenders.

It’s not just the location that provides clues as to the extremely non-casual nature of sex, however. Our hearts and souls give an even stronger indication. Now, it’s hard to talk about this aspect of the issue because everyone lies about it. They lie to themselves and to each other. Those who frequently have casual sex will claim that they can do it without growing attached to the other person. And this may be true, after a while, if they’ve done it so often, and are so numb inside, that they’ve developed the same attitude towards sex as a prostitute.

Fortunately, most people aren’t quite that dead inside. Most people experience a whirl of strange and intense emotions before, during, and after the act. They may suppress or ignore these natural feelings, but that leads to depression and anxiety. Having a casual discussion with someone doesn’t result in this sort of internal strife. Treating sex as if it were a casual discussion does.

I haven’t even gotten to the most obvious indication that sex is not casual. Here it is: sex creates people. Yes, we may go to great lengths to prevent such “unintended” consequences, but that doesn’t change the fact that sex, by its nature, is a reproductive act. Only disease, old age, or surgery can absolutely remove the life-giving potentiality of sex. Outside of that, anytime you have sex, there is a chance you may make a person.

Can an architect casually design a high rise building? Can an aerospace engineer casually build a rocket ship? I don’t know about you, but I can’t even casually poach an egg. Simply making a meal requires a certain commitment and seriousness of purpose. Are we really prepared to say that the process by which we create a breakfast dish ought to be treated with greater respect and caution than the process by which we create humans?

Casual interactions can only have significant consequences by accident. If a fist bump has some Earth-shattering, life-altering result, it was an aberration. Sex, on the other hand, has a significant consequence by its nature. If you “accidentally” make a person through sex, you have experienced the same result as billions of other people. You might say that sex is not casual, it’s causal (sorry, I couldn’t help myself).

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If You Just Started Caring About Political Scandals Again, You’re a Brazen Hypocrite

You have to give us a little while for our eyes to adjust. It’s dizzying, you understand. A bit disorienting.

The media took an eight year break from covering White House scandals, and now, after these past 96 months of silence, they’ve suddenly got their noses to the ground and are tracking the scent of corruption once again. A full 8 years of inaction and, miraculously, out of nowhere, like Sleeping Beauty kissed by Prince Charming, they’ve opened their eyes and risen from their long slumber.

Most of us would probably lose our jobs if we decided not to do them for 3,000 days in a row, but journalists are a privileged lot. I thought school teachers were lucky because they get to take 3 months off every year, but that’s nothing compared to the media. News reporters are allowed to go into a state of virtual hibernation for as long as there’s a Democrat in the White House. No wonder they work so hard to elect Democrats! You would, too, if it meant a paid vacation for the better part of the next decade.

I don’t know if this Michael Flynn thing is a legitimate scandal or not. All we know at the moment is that, shortly before Trump took office, Flynn spoke to the Russian ambassador about the sanctions Obama had levied against them. I don’t see that alone as some great crime. More importantly, the FBI doesn’t see it as a crime, which is why they aren’t going to prosecute. The fact that Flynn lied to everyone makes it a bigger problem, and justified his ouster from the Administration.

None of this, as far as we know, rises anywhere even close to the level of an impeachable offense on Trump’s part. But the media is, of course, trying to connect enough dots to make it what they want it to be (which, by the way, is not how investigative journalism is supposed to work). The New York Times had a bombshell report last night revealing that people in Trump’s campaign had contact with people in Russian intelligence over the past several months. What’s not clear is who talked to who, or what about, or whether the people in Trump’s campaign knew the other people were Russian intelligence, or whether Trump knew this was going on, or whether anything remotely illegal was done or said, or anything else. Some folks talked to some folks. That’s about the extent of the story at this point. In other words, there isn’t a story. And whatever incomplete story we have, we only have because members of the intelligence community are in a state of outright mutiny.

As far as we know right now, the only real criminals here are the intelligence officials who’ve been leaking classified information from clandestinely recorded telephone conversations to the media in hopes of sabotaging a sitting president. That is a crime, a scandal, and it has the makings of a true constitutional crisis. But the media isn’t interested in running that angle down. They’re only interested in nailing the president for corruption, which is an interest they only just developed.

Look, if Trump is ever guilty of real abuses of power, real corruption, real scandal, I will be the first to call for his head, metaphorically. And I don’t think a Trump scandal is mitigated or made less important or more acceptable by the fact that Obama also had scandals. I’m not going to shout “But Obama!” in order to bail Trump out of whatever trouble he may bring upon himself. Leftists spent eight years shouting “But Bush” for Obama’s sake, and I don’t intend to adopt that strategy. But the fact is that Obama did have scandals — real scandals, terrible scandals, scandalous scandals — and, in the interest of truth, we can’t allow the Left to stand right in front of us and rewrite history on the fly. The truth matters.

I say it again: The truth matters.

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‘Deep State’ Has Trump on the Menu

Whether President Trump knows it or not, he is in a battle with a powerful ‘Deep State’ that wants to suck him into its neocon foreign policy orthodoxy or destroy him politically, as ex-British diplomat Alastair Crooke explains. By Alastair…

Trump Needs to Rethink Terror Policies

President Trump vows to restructure his travel ban for seven mostly Muslim countries – and consider a “safe zone” in Syria – but those ideas create more risks than they eliminate, says Ivan Eland. By Ivan Eland Although Donald Trump…

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Making Puppy Mills Great Again

Many Americans applauded President Trump’s vow to slash government regulations – that always sounds great in the abstract – but it may be less popular when it means gutting rules that addressed puppy mill abuses, says JP Sottile. By JP…

Tulsi Gabbard vs. ‘Regime Change’ Wars

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard is a rare member of Congress willing to take the heat by challenging U.S. “regime change” projects, in part, because as an Iraq War vet she has seen the damage these schemes can do, as retired Col.…

Netanyahu’s No-Way to a Peace Deal

Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu tried to sound reasonable in his first meeting with President Trump, but he will never agree to a reasonable peace deal with the Palestinians, says Alon Ben-Meir. By Alon Ben-Meir President Trump should not be swayed…

Toxic Policies of ‘President Agent Orange’

Exclusive: President Trump’s early hard-right actions and hirings threaten some of America’s most vulnerable people and the environment, with his policies even compared to the poison Agent Orange, writes Marjorie Cohn. By Marjorie Cohn Rapper Busta Rhymes pegged it at…

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

German Intel Clears Russia on Interference

Exclusive: Mainstream U.S. media only wants stories of Russian perfidy, so when German intelligence cleared Moscow of suspected subversion of German democracy, the silence was deafening, says ex-CIA analyst Ray McGovern. By Ray McGovern After a multi-month, politically charged investigation, German…

Native Tribe Objects to Trump’s Wall

President Trump’s proposed “Great Wall” across the U.S.-Mexican border presents particular problems for a Native American tribe whose traditional lands straddle the line, reports Dennis J Bernstein. By Dennis J Bernstein The traditional lands of the Tohono O’odham Nation cover…

A Dangerous Hysteria on Russia

A grave danger from the U.S.-Russian hostilities bubbling in Official Washington is that both sides have narratives asserting their complete innocence rather than seeing the two sides of the story, observes James W Carden. By James W Carden The hysteria…

Trump’s Dysfunctional White House

In less than a month, President Trump has proven many of his critics right when they warned that his erratic temperament would be a poor fit for his White House responsibilities, notes Lawrence Davidson. By Lawrence Davidson There is something…

Progressives Pile on Flynn’s Ouster

President Trump is so despised by progressives that many are rallying behind neocon-driven demands for a New McCarthyism to silence those who object to a costly and dangerous New Cold War, as Sam Husseini describes. By Sam Husseini Many liberals…

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Trump Caves on Flynn’s Resignation

Exclusive: President Trump’s acceptance of National Security Advisor Flynn’s resignation marks Official Washington’s first big success in neutering Trump and killing hopes for a détente with Russia, reports Robert Parry. By Robert Parry The neocon-dominated U.S. foreign policy establishment won…

Matt Walsh: Apparently, Unborn Babies are Only Human When They Belong to Beyonce

Beyonce gave a typically self-deifying performance at the Grammy Awards last night.

She appeared at first to be dressed as a pagan oracle or goddess, adorned in an elaborate see-through stripper outfit and a golden halo. She quickly proceeded from there into outright sacrilege, recreating the Last Supper and the Ascension with herself playing the part of a sexualized, female Christ. By the end, it wasn’t clear if she was trying to be Jesus, the Virgin Mary, or some sort of Egyptian divinity. I’m sure she’d answer “D”: all of the above. Not satisfied with merely being a “Queen,” as she so often refers to herself while instructing her fans to “bow down” before her, Beyonce now demands to be hailed as messiah.

Her disciples, of course, are eager to oblige. After her performance, the internet exploded with proclamations of praise and worship, exclaiming that no creature on Earth or above it could be as perfect and beautiful and wonderful as our beloved Beyonce. Even Beyonce’s fellow celebrities know that they must exhibit appropriate deference to the lord and savior, as the Daily Beast described her. Adele apologized profusely to Beyonce for the crime of beating her for Album of the Year, and then broke the trophy in two and gave half to her as tribute.

This whole scene would be absurd enough on its own, but it was made all the more confused by the fact that Beyonce is pregnant with twins. Her pregnancy was meant to be a focal point of the performance. Liberals called it a “celebration of motherhood” and womanhood. All the gold and jewels perfectly highlighted the “glow” of “expectant mothers,” they explained. Even the most rabidly pro-abortion outlets referred to the entities in Beyonce’s womb as “babies,” and commented that her twins were the real stars of the show.

The performance even sparked a outpouring of appreciation for pregnancy itself, with leftists declaring that golden crowns ought to adorn the heads of all pregnant women. Those of us who’ve been calling all along for a greater respect for the miracle of pregnancy, only to be laughed at and mocked by the very people now very demonstratively displaying such respect, were left feeling dizzy by the drastic change.

Suddenly, pregnancy was cool again. Babies were human again. Life was life again. This always happens, temporarily, when famous people get pregnant — as it did, to a lesser extent, when George Clooney and his wife recently announced their own twin pregnancy — but we know that everything Beyonce does is the biggest and bestest and most perfectest. So, if Beyonce has decided to celebrate pregnancy, then celebrate we shall, at least for as long as she deems it fashionable.

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More Bluster and Bluff on Iran

For all the Trump administration’s tough talk on Iran – and its continuation of the lie that Iran is the prime source of terrorism – the prospects for any significant escalation of tensions remain low, reports Gareth Porter for Middle…

The Negotiation Option with North Korea

Exclusive: North Korea has learned the lesson that surrendering WMD is a recipe for U.S. invasion and murder of the leader – see Iraq and Libya – but negotiations to limit risks of another war remain an option, says Jonathan…

Monday, February 13, 2017

A Documentary You’ll Likely Never See

Exclusive: Ukraine on Fire, a new documentary about the Ukraine crisis, might change how people in the West perceive the conflict, but it’s unlikely to get much distribution since it contests the prevailing narrative, writes James DiEugenio. By James DiEugenio…

Why America is a Dangerous Country for Christians

My podcast this week extends on the piece I wrote a few days ago. The point I want to explore is this: Our country is very dangerous for Christians. In fact, our country, and western culture as a whole, may be more dangerous for Christians than any other place anywhere in the world, at any time. 

By this I’m obviously not referring to physical dangers. Clearly, our situations could hardly be more comfortable and luxurious. Yet if we were to compare, by percentages, how many Christians abandon their faith in our culture with how many abandon it in places where they are killed for keeping it, I think we would find that our percentages are much higher. Our dangers are spiritual, not physical. We may not be sent to the gallows but we do send ourselves to Hell. 

Why is that? Well, as I said before, a lot of us have adopted a false Christianity, and we don’t realize it’s false because we’ve never put it to the test. It would be relatively simple (though not easy), in the face of physical persecution, to figure out whether or not your faith is false. If you know that professing it may result in death, and is certain to result in great suffering, you would only proceed if you actually believed it. Only Christians who truly love Christ would say that they love Him when saying so may result in immediate martyrdom. The words are their own proof in that circumstance.

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Sunday, February 12, 2017

How Israel Out-Foxed US Presidents

From the Archive: President Trump hosts Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu this week with the new U.S. administration expected to fall in line as so many “out-foxed” predecessors have, as Morgan Strong described in 2010. By Morgan Strong (Originally published May…

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Amnesty International Stokes Syrian War

The West’s vast propaganda machine has pulled in many formerly respectable groups, such as Amnesty International, which just released a dubious “human rights” report aimed at stoking the war in Syria, reports Rick Sterling. By Rick Sterling Amnesty International (AI)…

Deciphering Trump’s Opaque Foreign Policy

President Trump has set loose several competing – and contradictory – strands of foreign policy with the big question now whether he can avoid tripping himself up, writes ex-British diplomat Alastair Crooke. By Alastair Crooke It is now a commonplace…

Friday, February 10, 2017

The Neocons’ Back-Door to Trump

Exclusive: By enforcing a “group think” calling Iran the chief sponsor of terrorism, Official Washington’s neocons are maneuvering the Trump administration into conforming with Israeli (and Saudi) desires, reports Robert Parry. By Robert Parry President Trump’s foreign policy is sliding toward…

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Trump’s Foreign Policy at a Crossroads

Exclusive: Recent U.S. foreign policy – driven by neocons and liberal hawks – has spread chaos and death around the globe. But can “crazy” Donald Trump bring sanity to how the U.S. approaches the world, asks Robert Parry. By Robert…

If You Find it Easy to be a Christian, You Probably Aren’t One

Over 80 percent of the people in this country claim to be Christian, but how many, in the end, will find out the hard way that their claims were false?

Our culture seems perfectly designed to lead us into this sort of false faith, primarily for two reasons:

First, it’s dangerously easy to be considered “Christian” by popular standards because, according to those standards, the faith is nothing more than a collection of vague and friendly sentiments. And we know that a man is quite apt to believe that he is whatever the world considers him. If the world looks at the Jesus fish on his bumper, the Bible quote in his Twitter profile, the Christmas lights on his house in December, and says, “There’s a Christian,” then, as far as he’s concerned, he must be one. The world is fooled. He is fooled. God is not.

Second, our culture is hostile to the authentic Christianity. Being superficially Christian in America can profit you immensely (see: Joel Osteen, etc.), but a true faith may cost you. Occasionally it may cost you severely, as is the case with business owners who’ve lost their livelihood for refusing to take part in gay weddings.

But the majority of us haven’t faced such a circumstance yet. The most we have to endure for our faith are sarcastic remarks, snide comments, and frowny emojis. Our lives are not threatened. Our livelihoods are not (usually) threatened. Most of us aren’t being spat on when we walk down the street. We aren’t experiencing total social alienation. We go through life basically unmolested.

The danger comes when we lose sight of how luxurious our situation is, particularly compared to how Christians elsewhere in the world and throughout history have fared. If we delude ourselves on this point, we may think that our religious convictions have somehow been tested and proven when a guy we knew in high school unfriends us for posting spiritual memes on Facebook. I’ve more than once found myself in conversation with a Christian who recounts such a trauma as if it were her personal Passion. She hit the tiniest speed bump because of her religion and now she looks in the mirror and sees Joan of Arc.

I’m tempted by this trap myself. If I’m not careful, I may feel a stupid pride in the fact that hundreds of sad, lonely people send me vicious messages whenever I write something with a Christian theme. I may say to myself, “Oh, look at these slings and arrows I’m taking. How courageous I am to endure unpleasant emails for the sake of my faith!” Meanwhile, another group of Christians in Syria are marched into the desert and hacked to pieces or burned alive for theirs.

Besides, any profession of faith is sure to earn as much praise from one side as it will contemptuous attacks from the other. So, are we proclaiming our faith in spite of the attacks or because of the praise? Do we announce the good news in hopes of receiving hearty pats on the back, or do we announce it simply because it’s our duty regardless? This question is not as easy to answer as it seems.

Who can say they’ve stood utterly alone in the wilderness, preached Christ, and endured assaults from all sides, with no one to come to their defense and tell them that they’re so very brave and so very awesome for being so very Christian? Not many of us. The opportunity rarely presents itself. And if ever it does, we can always go on Facebook afterwards and brag of our persecution in hopes of being compensated with likes and shares.

Plainly, it doesn’t require great sacrifice to carry the Christian label in America, as it does in Iraq or Libya or wherever else. But if it did require such sacrifice, would we still carry it? If there was no chance of gaining any temporal reward for our piety, would we bother? If proclaiming our faith meant embracing true suffering and persecution, would we still proclaim it?

If we wouldn’t, then our faith is a fashion statement. Something we drape over ourselves for our own sake. Entirely artificial.

So, how exactly do we know whether our faith is so artificial? I can’t look inside anyone’s soul and answer that question for them — it’s enough of a challenge that I answer it for myself — but I can suggest three major red flags. If our idea of Christianity falls into any of the following categories, there’s a good chance that what we call “Christianity” is really a mask we wear to fool the world and ourselves:

1) It’s easy.

We may not face the prospect of a torturous death in this country, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy to be authentically, actively Christian. It’s never easy, certainly not in this godless land. But it’s temptation that we face most of all, not persecution. Satan has had great success using the carrot rather than the stick in our case.

After all, from his perspective, why make martyrs of Christians when you can dangle materialism, worldliness, lust, perversion, apathy, ignorance, self-interest, and envy in front of their faces, and convince them that such a lifestyle can be lived in harmony with Biblical teaching? Why send them on the quick road to Heaven when you can put them on the slow and degrading road to Hell?

It’s always difficult to resist the pull of sin, but in our culture it’s made all the harder by the fact that sin and temptation are broadcast directly into our faces relentlessly, at all hours of the day, and each form has its own advocacy group, its own collection of heretics busily cutting and pasting the Bible together so that their favorite brand of evil can be excused. If we look, we can always find some “church” somewhere insisting that our pet sin is actually a blessing. Whatever temptation we fight, there will always be a sizable group of “Christians” erasing words from Scripture and filling them in again like Mad Libs so as to convince you that God wants you to succumb to it.

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Trump Confronts New McCarthyism

President Trump has hit back forcefully against the New McCarthyism, including a stunning rebuke of Sen. John McCain for fanning a New Cold War with Russia and risking World War III, writes Gilbert Doctorow. By Gilbert Doctorow The original McCarthyism…

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Trump’s ‘Great Wall’ and the ‘Drug War’

Exclusive: The argument for President Trump’s “Great Wall” across the U.S. southern border would be severely undercut if America expanded legalization of personal drug use, reports Jonathan Marshall. By Jonathan Marshall Attention deficit disorder isn’t usually a welcome presidential attribute,…

A Deadly Legacy: CIA’s Covert Laos War

Exclusive: The CIA’s covert war in Laos – in the 1950-60’s – has remained a model for U.S. proxy wars through today’s “war on terror,” but the forgotten lesson was the conflict’s destructive failure, recalls war correspondent Don North. By…

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Castigating Trump for Truth-Telling

Exclusive: President Trump says much that is untrue, but he draws some of Official Washington’s greatest opprobrium when he speaks the truth, such as noting that senior U.S. officials have done a lot of killing, writes Robert Parry. By Robert…

America’s Lost Tradition on Non-Intervention

By implicitly criticizing U.S. interventionism, President Trump’s inaugural speech drew denunciations from the Washington establishment as a dangerous deviation, but his message actually fit with U.S. traditions, says Ivan Eland. By Ivan Eland Although the media trashed Donald Trump’s inaugural…

Monday, February 6, 2017

What Trump’s ‘Great Wall’ Misses

President Trump’s “Great Wall” ignores a key reason why desperate Mexicans and Central Americans flee north – the history of U.S. military and economic intervention that has created poverty and repression, notes William Blum. By William Blum Instead of building…

Latino Fear from Trump’s Bluster

President Trump’s harsh rhetoric toward undocumented immigrants is spreading fear in immigrant communities, even among people who are in the U.S. legally, a California state senator tells Dennis J Bernstein. By Dennis J Bernstein California State Sen. Ben Hueso, whose…

Sunday, February 5, 2017

How US Believes Impossible Things

Over many decades, the U.S. establishment has become practiced at putting out claims that are completely false or that leave out key details to mislead the public, but now come complaints about “fake news,” observes William Blum. By William Blum…

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Steering Trump Back to Endless War

Exclusive: President Trump’s chaotic first two weeks have seen senior aides reverse his most promising plans for restoring realism to U.S. foreign policy, especially regarding Russia and the Mideast, reports Daniel Lazare. By Daniel Lazare Well, that didn’t take long,…

Trump Schooled on Separation of Powers

President Trump is getting a crash course on the U.S. Constitution’s separation of powers as federal courts knock down his temporary immigration ban aimed at seven mostly Muslim countries, reports Marjorie Cohn. By Marjorie Cohn On Jan. 27, President Trump…

The Double Standard on Yemen’s Suffering

The Trump administration condemns Iran as somehow responsible for a Yemeni rebel group’s attack on a Saudi warship, but ignores the Saudi-inflicted bloodbath on the Yemeni people, as Gareth Porter explained to Dennis J Bernstein. By Dennis J Bernstein The…

Friday, February 3, 2017

If We Call Unborn Babies ‘Fetal Refugees’ Would Leftists Care About Them?

It’s striking that so many people on the left appear to have limitless compassion for refugees and illegal immigrants yet none at all for babies. I wonder if they might suddenly discover at least an ounce of humanity for the unborn if we started describing them as “fetal refugees” or perhaps “immigrants from the uterus.” 

The contrast is even more remarkable when you consider that every argument they make in favor of unfettered immigration applies even more directly to the unborn. Their position on illegal aliens and refugees is, after all, a moral position. They appeal almost entirely to morality, dismissing with contempt practical concerns like national security and national sovereignty. They say that these people — illegal aliens, refugees — are human beings and as such they deserve to be treated with respect (which is true). They say that it is our responsibility as citizens to deal with whatever inconvenience or burden caused by their presence (which is not necessarily true). Their right to enter our country supersedes our own concerns (which is definitely not true). 

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Trump Bends to Neocon Pressures

Exclusive: President Trump’s calls for reorienting American foreign policy look to be disintegrating in his first two weeks in office as he embraces the neoconservative hostilities toward Iran and Russia, as Andrew Spannaus notes. By Andrew Spannaus The Trump Administration’s…

A Reprise of the Iraq-WMD Fiasco?

Exclusive: Official Washington’s new “group think” – accepting evidence-free charges that Russia “hacked the U.S. election” – has troubling parallels to the Iraq-WMD certainty, often from the same people, writes James W Carden. By James W Carden The controversy over…

Trump’s Iran-Bashing Distraction

Like other U.S. presidents, Donald Trump is falling in line behind the Israeli-Saudi fiction that Iran is the principal source for world terrorism and regional disorder, a dangerous turn, notes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar. By Paul R. Pillar One…

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Trump Veers Off Course with Iran Threats

The Trump administration has veered into dangerous territory with its threats against Iran, a danger to President Trump’s larger vision of a revamped international order, reports ex-British diplomat Alastair Crooke. By Alastair Crooke Donald Trump needs détente with Russia for…

The Irony of Trump’s Immigration Ban

Although the vast majority of Americans are descended from immigrants, the country goes on periodic rages against immigration for certain groups, now including President Trump’s partial ban on Muslims, reports Lawrence Davidson. By Lawrence Davidson On April 21, 1938, President…

‘Deflategate’ Cloud over the Super Bowl

Exclusive: There’s a larger point to the NFL’s bizarre Deflategate story – how checks and balances have broken down in America letting powerful institutions do almost whatever they want to anyone even Tom Brady, reports Robert Parry. By Robert Parry…

Trump’s Troubling First Days

Donald Trump’s presidency is off to a chaotic and troubling start with provocateur Steve Bannon pushing controversial policies and Trump closing ranks with the Right, say Bill Moyers and Michael Winship. By Bill Moyers and Michael Winship The smell of…

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Ukraine Sabotages Trump’s Russia Detente

Exclusive: A Ukrainian military offensive into rebel-held eastern Ukraine is giving Washington’s war hawks an excuse to demand President Trump escalate tensions with Russia, negating his hopes for détente, writes Jonathan Marshall. By Jonathan Marshall Less than two weeks into…

Goodbye, Boy Scouts of America. You Spineless Cowards.

Goodbye, Boy Scouts. You fools. You invertebrates. You caved once again and will now allow “transgender boys” — also known as girls — to enter your ranks. I guess you forgot that the girls already have their own branch of the Scouts. It’s called the Girl Scouts. You know, the one with the cookies. Will the Boy Scouts start selling cookies now, too? That would be one upside to all of this, at least.

Your chief executive declared yesterday that it’s “not sufficient” to use a birth certificate as reference point to determine a person’s gender. I’m certain that he doesn’t actually believe that. Most of the people who’ve submitted to the “transgender” superstition don’t actually believe it. They know full well that a girl is a girl and a boy is a boy. That’s the obvious truth. But in these irrational days, it takes a bit of fortitude to stand by the truth, especially the most obvious truths. Unfortunately, fortitude is precisely what you lack. And by “you,” I mean the leadership who made this decision. The actual scouts themselves are just another set of victims here. But not for much longer, because Christian families are pulling out. We’re done with you. For good.

We tried to tell you this would happen. Once you start compromising with the Culture of Death, it never ends. You can’t just sell a piece of your soul to the Devil and expect him to leave you alone. No, he wants to eat the whole thing. He’s always hungry, never satiated.

So, you surrendered to the LGBT lobby a few years ago and allowed in openly gay Scouts, even though the Supreme Court had already upheld your right to exclude them. You thought the forces of darkness would be satisfied with that, but they weren’t. Like we warned you. Then you surrendered and welcomed openly gay scoutmasters into the fold, enabling homosexual men to accompany young boys on overnight camping trips and all the rest of it. You thought they’d finally leave you alone then — I mean, what else could they possibly want? — but you were mistaken.

You’d made every concession demanded by the LGB, now it was the T’s turn. They didn’t have to fight too hard. You were already on your knees, groveling and whimpering. You’d already decided to abandon the “keep myself morally straight” part of the Scout oath. Why not dispense with the rest of it? Why not utterly dismantle everything that has defined you for over a century? Why not defeat the entire purpose of your organization for the sake of an infinitesimal fraction of the population? The point of the Boy Scouts is to teach boys how to be men. Why not alter that formula so that you can also teach girls how to be men? Well, I can think of a few reasons why you shouldn’t: logic, sanity, decency, reality, morality, etc. But you’d punted those particular footballs a while ago. So here we are.

You’re finished now. You know that, right? It’s primarily Christian parents who send their kids into the Scouts. Well, that’s over. My two sons will never be Scouts. Ever. And I guarantee that my feelings reflect the sentiment of most conservative Christian families, which is (or was) your lifeblood. Good luck trying to survive with only radical leftists donating their money and enrolling their kids. How many leftist scouting enthusiasts do you think exist in the country? Leftists don’t go camping unless it’s a jam band festival. You better starting singing Phish tunes around the campfire or you don’t stand a chance.

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Yes, of Course Christians can Support Trump’s Immigration and Refugee Policies

The recent news about Donald Trump’s Executive Order seems to have created scores of new Biblical scholars. The interesting thing about these Instant Theologians (Instalogians, for short) is that many of them are secularists who regularly deride the Bible as a collection of childish fairy tales. But every once in a while they’ll take a break from sneering at it to suddenly appeal to its moral authority. Of course, the problem is that these brilliant academics have never actually read the “fairy tales,” so when they try to use it as a cudgel to beat conservative conservatives over the head, they more often end up smacking themselves. I’ve been called a “Bible thumper” many times, but I’ve never thumped anyone with a Bible. I prefer to stand back and let them thump themselves.

I’ve been observing this spectacle these last several days, as Leftists have chided Christians for “disobeying the Bible” and “betraying their faith” by refusing to join in the collective freak out over Trump’s policies on immigration and refugees. I’ve heard over and over again that my faith requires me to advocate for the immediate admission of illegal aliens and un-vetted refugees from terror hot spots. The Bible clearly commands it, they say. You can’t be a “real Christian” unless you’re an advocate for open borders and unfettered immigration. National security and sovereignty are heresies!

Now, before I explain why these claims are inaccurate and downright silly, I need to mention three logical inconsistencies Leftists quickly run into when they go this route:

First, if the Bible is a backwards, bigoted, primitive relic — as Leftists usually claim — isn’t that all the more reason to ignore its (non-existent) advocacy for open borders?

Second, if the Bible contains all of these exhortations to help the poor and the sick and the orphaned (which it does), isn’t that evidence that it isn’t a backwards, bigoted, primitive relic? The idea that we should humble ourselves and serve others was not, in those days, such an obvious concept. It’s only obvious (though still only sparingly heeded) nowadays because we live in a civilization built upon Christian doctrine. At the time, however, Christ and the early apostles were preaching something revolutionary. If they could see this beautiful truth — if they were capable of a compassion unknown to man up until that point — does that not at the very least compel the rational critic to take a second look at the other moral teachings made by these radical humanitarians?

It’s obvious that these men and women were not mere products of their time. They were capable of seeing beyond their time. They professed a doctrine that was timeless and, in the truest sense of the word, progressive. Yet St. Paul still told women to submit to their husbands and Jesus still defined marriage as between a man and a woman. If they were blinded by the biases of their age in these areas, how were they otherwise so capable of seeing through them?

Third, no matter if the Bible is a fountain of moral and spiritual truth, or a backwards, bigoted, primitive relic, or some utterly inexplicable mix of the two, you must decide whether it can be used as an argument for public policy or not. You must choose one argument or the other. If “because the Bible says so” is anywhere on your list of reasons for supporting open borders and uncontrolled refugee admission from Syria, then you have admitted that “because the Bible says so” is a fundamentally legitimate defense of public policy. If it is, I guess we can say goodbye to abortion and gay marriage.

The interesting thing, however, is that I don’t cite Scripture to support my position that abortion should be illegal. I don’t even cite it to support my position that the government should recognize marriage as between a man and a woman. These are truths ingrained in our human nature. I say that the government should govern according to that — Natural Law, I mean — not according to the specific theological tenets of the Bible. So we arrive at the odd dichotomy where the people most likely to use the Bible to support their policies are the very people who don’t believe in it.

OK, with that established, let’s look at what the Bible actually says. Can a Christian be faithful to Scripture while also supporting Trump’s approach to Middle Eastern refugees and illegal immigrants? Are we compelled by our religion to denounce Trump for putting a hold on the Syrian refugee program in order to strengthen the vetting process? Are we betraying the very faith we profess when we argue in favor of temporarily prohibiting travel from terrorist breeding grounds while the government reassesses how it handles such travelers?

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Dangers of Democratic Putin-Bashing

Exclusive: As national Democratic leaders continue to blame Russian President Putin for their 2016 defeat, they’re leading their party into a realignment with the neocons and other war hawks, reports Robert Parry. By Robert Parry The Washington establishment’s hysteria over…