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  • May 23rd, 2019


By Joel M. Vance


When God looks down from His\Her heavenly throne and beholds Donald Trump, Mitch McConnell, and Sarah Huckabee Sanders, He\She must grumble thunderously, “how could I have been so wrong!”


According to the Bible, God created woman from Adam’s rib. He or She must have used the wrong body part to create Sanders and as for those two guys, Donald Trump and Mitch McConnell, God must be wishing He or She had created a more lethal apple or a more venomous snake.


The Mueller report is out and while it never will supplant Gone With the Wind, to Kill a Mockingbird, or the Bible as a bestseller it does make for reading every bit as horrific as Stephen King’s most bone chilling novels. It lays out a roadmap leading from Donald Trump’s trashy presidency directly to the door of the United States Congress within which lies the power of impeachment to get rid of God’s creative stumble.


Predictably, Tubby Donnie trotted out his two female acolytes from the depths of the West Wing to parrot his tiresome denial of wrongdoing. Kellyanne Conway, the Wicked Witch of the West Wing,  appears, seemingly from nowhere, like one of the harpies from mythology. And then there is Sarah Sanders and invariably when the two of them descend on the weekend talk shows like those flying monkeys from the Wizard of Oz, I instantly think of count Dracula, so chillingly portrayed in the movies by Bela Lugosi, who always was accompanied by a couple of female vampires, ever ready to suck blood from the truth.


The sheer hypocrisy of Sarah Sanders is stunning. How can this woman, daughter of a minister, a professed Christian, so wholly endorse the misogynistic, bigoted, rantings of Donald Trump who, in his personal life, has violated virtually every moral imperative of the Christian religion? She epitomizes the old joke about politicians: “you can tell when a politician is lying— his lips are moving.” (Or hers)


It’s incomprehensible to me that any woman would associate herself (read that as “demean herself”) by associating with Donald Trump, the epitome of the misogynist. I could only shake my head when I saw a photo on the Internet of Trump at a rally in Mobile, Alabama, a state which itself is the epitome of much of society’s ill health. In the photo Trump is faced by a huge mob which, as far as I can tell, is 100% white, and right at the front of this adoring mob of supporters are several women.


One, directly in front of him, is a young woman clutching a baby. Trump is cupping the baby’s face with his pudgy hand (perhaps leaving the mark of the Devil upon it) and the presumed mother appears to be shrieking with delight at being this close to her idol. A couple of people behind her is another woman bearing aloft a sign reading “Thank you Lord Jesus for President Trump”.


After popping a handful of Tums to quell my rising gorge, I looked for a different photo, something more palatable— perhaps a pride of lionesses tearing apart the bloodied carcass of a wildebeest. The only saving factor in that Trump photograph is the baby is not old enough to vote for Donald J Trump. But give the kid enough years and it can qualify for membership in the KKK, the white Citizens Council, or the Alabama Republican Party.


That the woman’s idiotic sign thanks Jesus for Trump echoes the equally idiotic claim by several commentators on the far right that God has sent Trump to save the country. This mixing of religion with politics directly contradicts the intent of the nation’s founders that religion and our republic  have no business being intermingled. But that doesn’t stop the Bible bangers from claiming that God and country are intertwined. And that is one step from claiming that the United States of America should be a theocracy. Guess what? Iran is a theocracy and, according to Donald J Trump, we don’t want to be like iran. In fact, according to Trump’s closest advisers like John Bolton, we should just nuke Iran.


Back in 1950 the egomaniacal general Douglas MacArthur advocated separating North Korea from communist China by laying down a boundary line of atom bombs that would create a radioactive barrier between the two countries—too hazardous to cross. Cooler heads prevailed and, ultimately, after 50,000 Americans died, a form of peace prevailed as a truce which holds, uneasily, to this day—and MacArthur got fired by President Truman. It’s too bad Bolton and his ilk haven’t joined MacArthur as shady footnotes in American history. One can only hope it will come to pass SAP.


Back to Sanders: In February of this year she said “I think God calls for all of us to fill different roles at different times and I think that He wanted Donald Trump to become president and that’s why he’s there.” Apparently Sanders thinks her role in God’s plan is to be a sycophant for Donald Trump. If those of religious bent, those who believe in God (which includes Christians, Muslims, and Jews, not to mention other religions which believe in an omnipotent presence), can wrap their mind around Sanders’ outlandish claim that Donald Trump amounts to the Second Coming, it goes a long way toward explaining how televangelists over the years have conned the credulous out of millions of dollars to finance their lavish lifestyles.  If you’re gutsy enough you can claim that it’s God’s will that an old lady should donate her life savings to some evangelical flim flam artist and then go to the polls and vote for Donald Trump for president. Either way, the innocent suffer.


In an interview with the New Yorker, Sanders said, when asked how she reconciles her defense of a man who paid off a porn star to help his election chances, “No one is perfect.” I wonder if she ever has seen the wonderful movie Some Like It Hot, where Jack Lemmon and Tony Curtis dress as women and join an all girl jazz band to escape gangsters. Lemmon is courted by a rich goofball, played by Joe E Brown, who, when Lemmon finally confesses that he’s not a girl but a guy, replies, “Well, nobody’s perfect,” as he takes  Lemmon’s hand and leads him toward his yacht.


This claim that Trump is the Chosen One is the equivalent of a get rich scheme, perpetrated by con artists. That’s what Donald Trump is—a quintessential con man. Perhaps the earthquakes which we thought were caused by fracking for oil and gas merely is God shaking in his boots.


Sanders is the daughter of Mike Huckabee a Baptist minister and former governor of Arkansas, another uncomfortable marriage of politics and religion. Huckabee acceded to the governorship when the former governor was convicted of fraud. As governor he pressured the state to release Wayne Dumond, a convicted rapist with a record of murder and sexual abuse charges going back a quarter of a century. Huckabee actually wrote this convict a letter saying “my desire is that you be released from prison.” Dumond was freed, moved to Missouri, raped and murdered a young woman.


Later, as a presidential candidate, Huckabee supported a man named Joshua Dugger who admitted he had molested children including his own siblings as a teenager.  Said Huckabee, “Good people make mistakes and do regrettable and even disgustng things.”


If Huckabee said any undeniably true thing about these two cases it was about Dugger’s family, “They are no more perfect a family than any family.” She meant it as a tribute to a family she said was dedicated to Jesus. I wonder therefore what she secretly believes about the Trump family? As to Trump’s religious convictions and dedication, at least twice he has autographed Bibles as if he were a visiting author, inscribing his very own book.


If any evidence were needed about Trump’s unconventional view of religion it came during his presidential campaign when former Minnesota representative  Michele Bachmann, as nutty a human being who has ever served in Congress, lauded Trump by saying “Trump is highly biblical, and I would say we will in all likelihood never see a more godly, biblical president again in our lifetime.”


In response to that encomium I can only quote an old colloquialism: “it’s enough to gag a goat.”


The role of the White House press secretary is to convey as much of the truth as the administration deems possible to the nation’s press and ultimately to the nation. Press secretaries are no stranger to evasion, devious interpretation, and outright lies, but none have come right out and described it as eloquently as Kellyanne Conway did when she called her outright lies “alternative facts.”  A fact is a fact and there are no alternatives to that—anything else is a lie.


At least Conway has her husband George (who despises Donald Trump at least as much as his wife reveres him) to counterbalance her fabrications; Sanders has only a few despicable Republican politicians and, of course, her even more despicable boss invisibly standing with her at the press room podium (when she bothers to show up). Perhaps it is this lack of reliable support that has kept her increasingly absent from press briefings. Any honorable person would be suffering from moral agony by having to shovel out the Augean stable of White House manure on a daily basis.


It has been documented that Donald Trump has piled up lies during his half term presidency in the thousands. The fact here is not an alternative one— it is true that he is a natural liar. In one of her more laughable obfuscations about her boss, Sanders said “I can definitely say the president is not a liar, and I think it’s frankly insulting that question would be asked.” She since has repeatedly echoed Trump’s proved lies, therefore establishing herself as the flip side of Trump’s falsehood fantasies.


Politicians and political parties historically have looked for a song to epitomize their message. Trump repeatedly has stolen the Rolling Stones song “You can always get what you want,” despite the band’s repeated requests for him to shut his mouth and quit stealing their song. But outright theft and misrepresentation never stopped Trump before. Tom Petty threatened to sue George W. Bush for stealing his song “I won’t back down” before little Georgie stopped the music.


 You have to go back to 1936 to find the perfect song to epitomize today’s Republican Party and I would give everything I own to hear Sarah Huckabee Sanders and Donald Trump stand side-by-side at the press briefing podium and sing a duet of a song written in 1936 by a man named Billy Mayhew. The song since has been recorded by a multitude of artists especially, Fats Waller, the wonderful stride piano player whose birthday it happens to be as I write these words.


The song is “It’s a sin to tell a lie.” Equally famous is a recording by the Ink Spots which contains a monologue by their sepulchral bass singer Hoppy Jones who rumbles “Whole lotta folks hearts have done been broken just over a lotta foolish words that’s spoken.” Perhaps Trump and Sanders could get Conway and Mitch McConnell to join in a re-creation of the Spots.


The Ink Spots and Fats Waller have gone on to musical heaven, Fats playing stride harp and the Ink Spots harmonizing  with the angels. But the country can only hope that the day after the 2020 election (or, if justice prevails, sooner) we can all joyously sing a 1929 song which, in 1932, epitomized hope for a depressed and economically ravaged country with the election of Franklin Delano Roosevelt: “Happy days are here again.”







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