Trump & the Weightier Matters of the Law
It is generally agreed upon by the Left that Donald Trump is the worst person ever, at least the worst person to ever be President of the United States. I would suggest to my liberal friends that they have become unhinged, for this is ahistorical nonsense.
Don’t get me wrong, Donald Trump is an awful person. I consider him to be a trousered ape. But being an awful person is a prerequisite for the job of President. How do you think that these people got to the top of this particular human garbage dump, by being civil, gracious humans? So right away we can dispense with the “It’s about the dignity of the office” argument. Neither the office nor any of its occupants have had any dignity at all. In fact, Donald Trump may not even be one of the 5 worst people to ever be President.
I can hear the liberals now, but what about his electoral shenanigans, didn’t he collude with the Russians? Let’s assume he did collude with Russia (yet no definitive proof of this). Does anyone remember Nixon’s Committee to Reelect the President (apt acronym CREEP)? Or how about the serious questions surrounding Kennedy’s wins in Illinois and Texas, courtesy of his friends Chicago Mayor Daley and VP candidate Senator Johnson. Or, way back when, when the southern Democrats gave up the win that was legitimately Samuel Tilden’s in 1876 in return for an end to Reconstruction. A nice summary of rigged U.S. elections is here. Whatever Trump may have done marks him as a piker compared to these professional riggers.
I know, I know, Trump is a uniquely vile person because he is a misogynist and a sexual predator. Unique if you forget Bill Clinton’s long list of “liaisons”, or turn a blind eye to Kennedy and Marilyn Monroe as well as Kennedy’s shacking up with the known girlfriends of Mafia leaders. See more about Kennedy here. Anyway, as the Huffington Post calls it, infidelity is a Presidential tradition.
How about Trump the money grubber, in this area he surely exceeds his predecessors? Not really. LBJ blatantly used the power of his office to line his pockets via his family owned radio and television station. Additionally his aid Bobby Baker involved Johnson in several dicey endeavors before he was forced to resign due to the scandal. Of course, Bill and Hillary Clinton excelled at using their position as public figures to enrich themselves. From her “prowess” as commodities trader to the long line of foreign nationals that donated to the now defunct Clinton Global Initiative, to the Wall Street speeches that they both gave the Clintons fairly well set the standard for political enrichment. In any event, every President since Ford has cashed in on the office after their time is up, so Trump again looks to be right in the heart of the tradition.
But Trump’s a racist, right? Maybe. How about the blatant racism of Woodrow Wilson, Truman, or even Lincoln, who was enamored of the Back to Africa Movement. Trump looks tame by comparison.
But all those Trumpian policies that are so awful (set aside that he has not actually gotten much of anything passed yet). It is a stretch to think they will be worse than Obama’s criminal drone war that slaughtered thousands of innocents, or the Kennedy/Johnson/Nixon Vietnam bungle in the jungle or FDRs internment of Japanese-American citizens after Pearl Harbor. Or maybe the whopper of all vile polices, Lincoln’s willingness to off 600,000 in pursuit of the centralization of federal authority. The list is practically endless.
While so many focus on the ahistorical enshrinement of Trump as the worst human ever to be President everyone has managed to ignore the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faith.
We still have a federal leviathan that steals 25% of the fruits of other’s labor and showers it on their political allies. We still have a Federal Reserve that enables much of this expropriation via a monetary policy that unrighteously lines the pockets of a crony banking class and deforms the capital markets and starves the real economy of the means to provide sustainable real growth.
We still have an entitlement program, which is a massively immoral inter-generational rip-off that is careening toward total implosion and an increasingly sclerotic healthcare system made ever worse by government micro-management.
Most egregiously and violently of all: we still have an empire that embroils us in the nefarious and systematic violations of human rights around the globe. Even the supposedly “easy on Russia” Trump has sanctions still in place, support of a fascist regime in Kiev and the placement of NATO troops on Russia’s border (in an explicit violation of a promise made in 1990) as well as a deep involvement in the Middle East that is the father of instability. In fact, the only time the Left agreed that Trump looked “Presidential” was when he shoved 59 cruise missiles up the asses of some hapless Syrians in a militarily pointless act of spasmodic violence. All of which I would point out are exact continuations of his immediate predecessors polices.
It is time to look past the peccadillos of any particular occupant of the White House and focus on what truly distresses. It is not any particular holder of Presidential power that is the issue. The issue is Presidential power itself. We will never address the weightier matters of the law until we deal with the gross irresponsibility of placing this much power in the hands of any human being. That such power exists is simply incompatible with the Gospel and its continued existence means we will make scant progress on the in-breaking of God’s Kingdom here. Let us instead focus on justice and mercy and faith and begin the long slog of dismantling a power structure that so egregiously violates the rights and dignities of God’s children. Let the dismantling begin!
Praise Be to God