Things I Think…

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80 Responses

  1. Babylon’s Dread says:

    @10 As I was reading this list I thought it to be one of the most Gospel laden you’ve posted. I was captured. Of course the Gospel does indeed seem a mess to us.

  2. Michael says:

    Thank you, BD…that’s high praise to me.

  3. Captain Kevin says:

    #10 – Sometimes I feel like that too. Mostly though, I sense my mind starting to deteriorate, especially when it comes to memory and motor skills.

  4. Michael says:


    I hear you…praying for you…

  5. Captain Kevin says:

    #1-Same holds true in education. With one side of the mouth, we’re admonished to “do what’s best for children,” and with the other, children are seen as their label or as simply another score that needs to rise so our data will prove that we’re doing our jobs.

  6. Captain Kevin says:

    Thank you, friend!

  7. Captain Kevin says:

    #3-Any politicizing of this is unfortunate. The topic is not going to go away any time soon, and the church needs to grapple with it. Challies has a good article on the conference that asks more questions than it answers, which is probably best at this point. I forwarded it to my pastor.

  8. Anne says:

    Poignant insights about issues of being a neighbor, immigrant, missionary etc. I think it might resonate with several hearts here

  9. Michael says:

    I’m almost 60…I don’t understand all these new nuances of sexual identity.
    I know the church is for sinners.

    End of my comprehension…

  10. Dan from Georgia says:

    Micheal, yes messy thoughts but you are honest and God loves that and I love you and appreciate it that you wrestle with God. Many won’t wrestle with God because they want to be the “super Christian” and therefore they deny humanity.

    A few responses to your thoughts…

    I just have to start off with your through number 7 about children coming to us…

    …I saw on Drudgereport today the headline of of “Border Crisis: X amount of children being allowed into the U.S”…I normally take Drudge with a HUGE grain of salt…but this is where I wanted to put my fist through the computer, through Matt Drudge’s face, and through the face of my friends who voted for Trump because he’s God’s chosen…the picture accompanying the Drudge headline showed several Latino (I assume) children holding guns….

    If there ever was a time I wanted to say goodbye to being a Conservative and join the ranks of Rachel Held Evans et al..this is it. I believe that this is the first time Drudge has had a link on his website about the immigration/border issue on his site, and he had to USE children for this vomitus.

    Thought number 1: I’ve had a similar thought lately that it’s getting sad how on social media if you have criticisms for Trump, etc etc etc, people automatically throw out there “liberal” or “leftist” or “Marxist” and the like. You are right, people are doing this to demonize another person, and that is that.

    Thought number 3: As to how far does God transform his children? This is a good thougt. I know I may raise a few eyebrows or hackles here, but when it comes to same-sex attraction and the whole host of other issues, I believe that those who come to our Lord and still find themselves attracted to the same sex, then that person is still truly saved. I know that there are many out there who believe that same-sex attraction is sinful in itself, even if not acted out. At this time I don’t camp out there. I cannot speak in totality of this because I do not have struggles/issues/sin in these areas. But I want to err on the side of grace and not pour more condemnation on those who suffer because they know they are saved but still have attractions that they don’t want. I know some here may try to challenge me on this, and I am not necessarily closed to changing my mind, but I just wanted to throw that out there.

    We are all works in progress, and there is a mystery why some things are left undone (psbl “thorn in the flesh” example?) throughout life. There is suffering in living on this side.

  11. Michael says:


    Both sides are demonizing the “other”…in the name of Jesus.

    We’ve lost our way.

    I struggle with other sex attraction…big time.

    I’m glad you’re here…thank you for being part of what we do.

  12. Duane Arnold says:

    We dehumanize across political boundaries and, increasingly, across theological and confessional boundaries.

    I wrote to Michael privately about a friend who died on Saturday. He was a fundamentalist, a dispensationalist, a charismatic, anti-liturgical, a mega-church pastor… and a good friend for over 45 years.

    I hope and believe that such friendships can still happen… and should.

  13. bob1 says:


    At first my thought was, “I’d be highly skeptical if Greg Laurie preached on suffering.”
    I don’t follow the guy at all, so I don’t know for sure…

    But on reflection, I remember that Billy Graham used to regularly, in his Crusades,
    tell potential converts to count the cost. I remember as a teenager hearing him and
    really pondering that. Graham was, as I remember, usually talking about how you
    might have to endure persecution. But there are other types of suffering, like
    “carrying our crosses.”

    So sure, it’s possible.

  14. bob1 says:

    “when it comes to same-sex attraction and the whole host of other issues, I believe that those who come to our Lord and still find themselves attracted to the same sex, then that person is still truly saved.”

    Me, too. I mean, I think much of Christ’s church recognizes there’s a difference between
    orientation and practice. I don’t believe the orientation in itself is sinful.

  15. Captain Kevin says:

    Michael @11:32, Same here. I’ll be 56 this summer. You understand the big picture, which tends to be forgotten in all the nit picking. You won’t go wrong by majoring in the Gospel of Grace.

  16. Matthew says:

    #9 reminds me, that there are times when preaching, I have to tell myself that common sense and God’s Wisdom are often at odds with each other, and I can’t be afraid to lay that out because Jesus doesn’t make any sense sometimes to this world we live in.

  17. Michael says:


    We need (especially in these times) to make sure that our congregations are mindful of the difference you note.

    Well said…

  18. Noelle says:

    It’s a good list. Thanks for continuing even when you don’t feel like it. I appreciate you.

  19. Michael says:


    Thank you. For being here and being you.

  20. Captain Kevin says:

    “I struggle with other sex attraction…big time.” Why doesn’t this get any easier as we grow older?

  21. Captain Kevin says:

    Nomans sighting!!

  22. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    Captain, because we were not made to be monogamous – this is why we must be commanded to be monogamous.

  23. Dan from Georgia says:

    Michael (11), thanks! I just can’t see the masses suddenly turning twitter and Facebook into a haven of safe discussion anytime soon. Even my Yahoo news feed is now mostly about who is dissing who and what has made twitter lose it’s mind today.

    bob1 (14), I think that is true overall. There are some bloggers/writers out there who do believe that it is sin to be attracted in such a way, but I don’t think they are the norm.

    I’ve said this before to others, but I think God goes easier on us that we do on ourselves sometimes!

  24. Em says:

    Good thread – lots to ponder… except….
    #6 – “howdy, neighbor, happy harvest may your your 40 acres soon be fields of clover…” I cant get that dern ditty out of my head now. ? must be an old age thing

  25. Eric Love says:

    Apologetics will never ‘prove’ the faith, but in a world where more people are evangelised away from the faith into secularism, we need to have available some defence for theism and faith in Christ not being completely stupid.

  26. Em says:

    #25 – Amen…. perhaps we Believers need it as much as anyone because the deeper our understanding the more reasonable it is

    I think the only souls that can’t get off the ground are the ones who think that declaring there is no god is a reasonable stand to take… Just the fact of solar flares must make it difficult for them to sleep at night.

  27. Noelle says:

    Hi, Captain! ??

  28. Steve says:

    Dan from Georgia @ 10,

    Regarding the same sex attraction issue. Jesus said that when you lust after a women who is not you wife it is the same as committing adultery. I’m reading between the lines here but I do think Jesus is probably also thinking that if a women who lusts after a man who is not their husband would also be adultery. But I take it further. I think Jesus is concerned about our thought life primarily. If a man or women is lusting after a same sex partner which is not natural that would also be something Jesus discourages and views as sinful. I realize my hermenutics could probably be polished a bit but this is where I am now.

  29. Michael says:

    I’ve never read an apologetic (and I’ve had to read a bunch of them) that would have swayed me in the least if I didn’t already believe.

    Now, there was a day when our “apologetic” was love…and that got some attention.

  30. Linnea says:

    Michael…it is a good list. So glad to see Noelle here! Politics and God’s love are two separate issues. Regarding the same sex issue, God brought to my mind years ago this verse: Galatians 3:28. Love Galatians, it’s a compendium for Romans. It’s something to ponder…makes me think. Thanks for posting this list!

  31. A Believer says:

    Good list Michael.

    I will comment on a few things.

    4. Apologetics as I see it is a defense of the faith. Biblically we are told to be ready to defend the faith. We also see Paul in the book of Acts defending the faith to both Jews and Gentiles.

    Paul, in Acts 26, challenges King Agrippa with the statement, “Why should any of you consider it incredible that God raises the dead?”

    There is nothing unreasonable about Christ’s resurrection if one’s presuppositions about God and His power are sound. However if one presupposes that there is no supernatural, and only relies on empirical evidences, this in itself is unreasonable.

    The evidences for the resurrection that the New Testament presents are historical, factual, objective evidences based on eyewitness testimony. To reject these testimonies is in itself unreasonable as we use this type of evidence even today in our court systems
    To “prove” something beyond a reasonable doubt.

    In the OT, God does say “Come let us reason together”. He also states that unbelief in God is foolishness.

    With that said, I firmly believe it is the Spirit’s work to convince anyone of the truth claims of Christianity.

    In the 3rd chapter of John, Jesus clearly states that it is a love of darkness that keeps people from coming to the Light (Jesus). Nothing at all is said about a deficiency of evidence being the reason people reject.

    I also find it interesting that in the story of the rich man and Lazarus, Abraham speaking prophetically states that people won’t believe the testimony of Moses and the prophets, neither will they believe even if one should rise from the dead.

    For a heart that has been prepared by the Sprit of God, there is no problem or unreasonableness with being presented the “facts” of the resurrection. They are part of the gospel we are commanded to proclaim.

    5. I know you are not a fan of Greg’s, but I think you might cut him some slack on the subject of suffering. As I recall, when Greg and Cathe lost their son, he noted that the way we are bouyed in our sufferings is through our faith in Christ and the hope that accompanies it.

    I don’t believe I have ever heard Greg suggest that faith in Christ exempts one from suffering.

  32. Outside T. Fold says:

    Video (annotated audio) from inside one of the Detention Camps, obtained by ProPublica.

    (Pro Publica article)

  33. A Believer says:

    Also this.
    3. Are people changed?

    My opinion is that they are.

    Before faith in Christ, people only exhibit their “fallen” Adamic nature. This does not mean they are incapable of reflecting God’s nature to an extent. They were made in the image of God, but that image has been broken. Even a broken mirror still reflects, its just that the image is distorted.

    Upon believing in Christ, we recieve Christ’s new nature that is perfect, not broken or shattered in any way. When the Father looks upon us He sees that new nature and declares us to be completely righteous.

    This new nature has not eradicated the old nature but the puts the believer into a war of sorts having to decide which position he will operate from.

    Since God does not perform lobotomies on Christians, we are responsible to make the decision to mortify the old nature and walk in the newness and power of the Spirit. In my opinion this presents a potentiality that few of us fully realize or actualize completely.

    As I see this dynamic, I don’t think it is helpful to try to redefine what God sees as sin. I believe God has been clear on what constitutes sin.

    The practice of homosexual behavior, is like all other sins, something that is to be overcome by our faith. None of us will be free completely from the influences of our old nature till the day Jesus takes us home.

  34. Cash says:

    Demonizing one another politically has become the norm for political discourse, and I agree it’s important to not allow our political differences to poison our love for others. But there is right and wrong, and what is happening to these families on the border is purely unamerican and unchristian. It is not I dehumanizing those who are for this policy. They are unfortunately dehumanizing themselves. I’m not here to argue the nuances of immigration policy. I am only referring to what out government is now choosing to do in response to fellow human beings seeking a better life. We all could probably cite the Scriptures by heart that would condemn this violence of the soul. But Like Michael said in #7, Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.”” (Matthew 19:13–14 ESV) If the kingdom belongs to the little children, how can we turn a blind eye to this monstrous moral tragedy? Thanks for allowing me to express my view.

  35. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    No one really thinks that is what Jesus was saying, do they? Do you?

  36. Cash says:

    Not necessarily, MLD. But it’s obvious He has a heart for children and I believe He is moved by their cries and their plight.

  37. Em says:

    i think our Lord is moved by the terrors and confusion of children everywhere on the planet…
    even tho it is natural to want to help these frightened, confused children, it is important to remember that they will be reunited with their parents… we can pray they are kindly cared for at the moment and pray
    the most helpful thing that we can do is find a way to get congress to quit their political games and do something constructive and rational for once… fund the facilities needed to keep these families together as their affairs are sorted out… there is a backlog of something like 7,000 cases waiting to be heard right now… this whole immigration situation is surreal
    it is easy to say that one hates this and for one’s heart to break for these people, but our emotions won’t solve this situation – IMV there is a lot more involved than just getting the hordes of people past the border

    it may or may not help but i recall my neighbor bringing her 4 year old over to my house as she had to keep an appointment that would not allow him to go with… you should have heard him cry, “mommy, mommy don’t leave me… mommy, mommy ….” She finally had to simply turn and go out the door as he tried to cling to her skirt. The door closed and he immediately stopped, turned around and said to my daughter, “come on let’s play.”

    It may be small comfort to those here are agonizing over this scenario, but I truly believe that, if these little wayfarers are kindly treated this event will not traumatize them. It may traumatize us, but not them… so much will depend on the skill of the caregivers… pray

  38. JoelG says:

    #3 – In my very subjective opinion, I think it’s dangerous to emphasize personal transformation over Christ’s work in His life, death and resurrection for us. The reason is I despair easily of my sin and failure as a believer and could easily give up believing I am “saved”. On the flip side it could (i I think it does IMHO) lead to a fake persona that denies failure because a “real” Christian would never do or think this or that.

  39. Xenia says:


    I remember 35 years ago when homeschooling was illegal in some parts of the country. If you kept children out of school, you were breaking the law and faced the very real possibility of having your children removed from your home by CPS. We homeschoolers, fueled by HSLDA (Home School Legal Defense Assoc) and various right-wing publications and radio programs, fed on this hysteria for years. “The government wants to take our children away from us,” we cried. We homeschooled because we believed it was the safest thing for our children. We were willing to break the law for the sake of our children.

    We always supposed that it was *us,* the overfed evangelicals living in relative luxury and complete safety, who would be the victims of governmental abuse. We imagined we were being persecuted. Yes, children *are* being taken away from their families, but it isn’t our children. Turns out, it’s the children of “others.” And this is being supported by the very people- the VERY people- who were hysterical that THEIR children- who are precious to them- were going to be taken away by an evil government but don’t give a RIP that other’s peoples’ children are being taken away by an evil government today. THEY could break the law and call it godly persecution. The people on the border break the law and it’s Lock Them Up for we must obey the Rule of Law. We didn’t care about the educational Rule of Law when we homeschooled illegally. Heck no, we were regular Christian heroes, we told ourselves.

    I wonder if anyone has thought how much a parent must love a child and how TERRIBLE conditions must be in the home country to take the risk of fleeing to the US? Have any of us pampered folk experienced anything remotely like this?

  40. Michael says:


    Thank you…so much for “family values”…

  41. Outside T. Fold says:


    I wonder if anyone has thought how much a parent must love a child and how TERRIBLE conditions must be in the home country to take the risk of fleeing to the US?

    But… but…. that would entail trying to imagine someone else’s life. It would entail putting yourself in someone else’s shoes. That’s too hard.

    Have any of us pampered folk experienced anything remotely like this?

    Well, that mean driver of a car cut me off when I was trying to park at the store the other day, so…

  42. Dan from Georgia says:

    Steve (28) AND JoelG (38)…thanks for the input and interaction. Like I said I am in thinking mode about this issue. Why some people have these attractions is beyond me. I don’t just think that they consciously chose to be attracted to the same sex. Frankly, I couldn’t change my orientation and become attracted to men if a gun was held to my head, or paid all the money in the world.

  43. Xenia – Good points.

  44. JoelG says:

    Dan – I hear you and agree.

  45. Em says:

    As i said last night this issue of temporarily separating children from parents is harder on parents than children IF the children are well treated – keep in mind that too many of these children are not with parents, but are headed for gangs and girls for unspeakable abuses. I would like to think that i would separate from my children for a time, if it would save another child and i knew that my child was safe for that period of time. We want good Latino families here, but how do we really protect the children?
    Pray that our government finally gets its act together and really puts the welfare of these children first. We’re getting too much manipulating propaganda putting politics ahead of all else.
    Do we want to call these exploited children collateral damage? No, of course not. Pray for wisdom

  46. Outside T. Fold says:

    To Michael’s point number 1, on words used for dehumanization: there are other words. “illegals,” “Animals,” and today, a term that goes back to the third reich, “infestation,” which implies vermin.

    Not only do we experience “othering” by the kind of labels that dismiss the opposing side in a debate among Americans talking about how to address issues inside the United States, but the language being used to refer to non-white immigrants is leading toward a situation that’s a humanitarian crisis, or, at worst, crimes against humanity.

  47. Michael says:


    You just hit on my biggest fear.

    We’re making unacceptable things acceptable a little at a time…

  48. Cash says:

    Outside, you are exactly right. The term infestation was used by the Nazis to describe the Jews. They were also called “cockroaches”. The dehumanization has begun…the frog is on a slow boil.

  49. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    Boy, if I hear one more comparison to Hitler and the Holocaust I will s**t a brick.
    In order to make a political point you totally dishonor Jews who survived.
    If you did any research at all on Hitler and the Holocaust, you would wash your own mouth out with soap.
    Totally inappropriate – even though I know such talk is celebrated here.

  50. bob1 says:

    I’ll supply the outhouse.

  51. Michael says:


    I understand your position to a degree.

    The problem is that the Holocaust did not happen in a vacuum or overnight.

    There were lots of years and lots of things that preceded and led to it…and we would dishonor the memory if we were not vigilant to look for those things so it never happens again on any scale.

  52. Cash says:

    Well, MLD, here comes your one more comparison to Hitler, so I hope you’re near a bathroom. Trump is like Hitler in that he has assumed power and has focused his wrath upon a specific group of people. He is demonizing this specific group of people by comparing them to vermin. You say we dishonor Jews who survived. That’s bullcrap. Many of those Jews themselves, such as Elie Weisel, taught us the importance of speaking out against injustice. Why do you insinuate that no one is educated like you? We have been educated about Hitler and the Holocaust and it is this type of injustice we are trying to prevent. How do you think it started? Dissent is the duty of every man of conscience. What is happening here is a moral outrage, and I won’t let you or anybody else intimidate me into silence.

  53. filbertz says:

    Michael, indeed the list of thoughts is a fine one…I agree with BD.
    A cluttered mind is more akin to genius than crazy.
    I have been calling colleagues and students “friend” or “my friend” when I need to ‘get serious’ about something, but also call them that when all is well. Your “neighbor” suggestion is one which would ‘haul some water.’
    I’ve commented on the “Hitler” comparison recently and would add these–I generally agree with MLD that the comparison is usually unwarranted and is typically hyperbole. Further, I think it is a sign that we aren’t very aware of other, less heinous, politicians whose malodorous reputations might be more fitting–because we aren’t astute students of history. Hitler is easy–everyone knows and hates him–so it’s a lazy comparison that typically enflames the conversation.

  54. filbertz says:

    Lost among the fur-flying regarding separating children from parents is the staggering numbers of people crossing the borders again–until the US reckons with our drug addictions, there will always be the demand that fuels chaos in Mexico, harms families, and creates the mess on our southern border. What will it take, the toppling of the government there? As long as we casually tolerate meth, heroin, cocaine, and so forth as a nagging societal problem, it isn’t going to get better at the border. Just sayin’

    Oh, and yes, we as a society can do better than the craziness at the border. Much better. Will we?

  55. Michael says:

    Thank you fil.

    Neither side wants to do anything about the drug issue.

    Mexico depends on the cash…and so do American banks…

  56. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    Cash, as a Jew born 3 yrs after WW2 livi,g in the Jewish Fairfax district of LA I can tell you about those telling the stories of Nazi Germany in the early 30s – no comparison at all, this is all fabricated political BS that you and others have bought into.
    I don’t remember what it is called but there is a logical fallacy used by those who run right to the Hitler comparisons.
    Someone mentions Hitler and Trump, I side up with Trump. Your next claim will be Trump is worse than Hitler – I’ll give you a week.

  57. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    Several here are guilty of ascribing to
    Godwin’s law
    Reductio ad Hitlerum
    Playing the Hitler card.

  58. bob1 says:



    You don’t have to be of Jewish background to learn the lessons of the Holocaust.

  59. bob` says:

    Someone mentions Hitler and Trump, I side up with Trump.

    Oh, no.

    How will our Republic ever survive?

  60. Em says:

    Everyone says “we can do better handling the hordes crossing the border.” No one says how to do that, tho
    If I am correct we (you and me) are spending upwards of $35,000 on each of the children being held. Their facilities are not chain link and concrete, BTW… they are actually quite comfortable… now some children will be traumatized, no doubt. The same little psyches that couldn’t take summer camp and their parents had to come and take them home. This is not a good thing… But the whole situation from street drugs to these children is not… a good thing.
    Maybe we should call our troops home from Korea and do another Sherman’s march to the sea thru Georgia… only this time we’ll head for the Panama Canal thru Mexico… i jest
    But the question remains, if we can do better, how do we do it?

  61. Outside T. Fold says:

    I am back (had to scoot out the door to attend a community meeting devoted to viewing a video of police stop gone into excessive force on a young African American man who is able to live to tell the tale. Cops were outside their city/jurisdiction when this all happened; they were in next door town that’s unincorporated county area; the stop and beating was a few blocks from where I type this).

    Anyway, I pressed the “Submit” button, above, because I had composed enough of a comment that would stand alone, even though I had one more thought I wanted to develop. I shall offer it here. (I’ll address the matter of Masonry, Excrement, and Godwin’s Law in a separate comment.)

    So. Back to the continuum of othering. Michael’s Point Number 1, of the Othering of the Loyal Opposition. Or, moderate othering. He named terms that basically stand in for Our Group is othering those other groups. It works like this: By using these terms, we don’t have to give the benefit of the doubt to those others. They couldn’t possibly be operating out of good faith and have reached different conclusions than we have. They’re simply Bad. or, Awful. or, Other. or Evil.

    The Loyal Opposition are our countrymen. Or rather they were our countrymen. Or they were “My fellow Americans.” Now they’re… some lesser set of beings. We use language to signal to members of our own group that we are righteous. We use language to diminish them.

    …and in so doing, we diminish ourselves.

    Thoughts become action. But do not escape the effects of how our thoughts and language about other people turn into how we treat other people.

    Further along the continuum, the more extreme the language of othering, the easier it is for us (we/our group) to do grave harm to others. Or commit atrocities. That’s where I fear the language of Illegals, Animals, Infestation is going.

    If you saw the PBS documentary Vietnam, recall John Musgrave, who talked about how guilty he felt when he first killed a man. But then one of his compatriots was killed, and he made a deal with the devil:

    “I said I will never kill another human being as long as I’m in Vietnam. However, I will waste as many gooks as I can find. I’ll wax as many dinks as I can find. I’ll smoke as many zips as I can find. But I ain’t going to kill anybody. You know, turn the subject into an object. It’s Racism 101.”

    As Einstein said, “We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.”

    We cannot fight evil with evil. (Gandhi)

    You cannot beat the system using the system’s language, violence, and tyranny (Rev. James Lawson)

    How much less human does it make us, to do things like this? To treat other humans like animals, like insects?

    We diminish ourselves. We ourselves become less human.

  62. Outside T. Fold says:

    Oh heavens, what a wall of text that was. Good for you if you waded through it. Oh, and I didn’t properly close the blockquote tag, so it looks as though I block quoted inside my block quote. Yikes. Apologies.

    To the Disciple of Martin Luther (95 theses emit from him), my source for Godwinning the word “infestation” was from a writer at Forward, a publication having far more cred/authority on these matters than this goy does (I am also outside that particular fold, as well)


    Characterizing people as vermin has historically been a precursor to murder and genocide. The Nazis built on centuries-old hatred of Jews as carriers of disease in a film titled “Der Ewige Jude,” or “The Eternal Jew.”

  63. Outside T. Fold says:

    Em —

    If I am correct we (you and me) are spending upwards of $35,000 on each of the children being held.

    You are following the money. Good. That is an excellent avenue of inquiry. There are people making bank off of prisons, detentions, and now this. I hope we learn more about this side of the whole sorry situation.

    (I looked up the job openings for General Dynamics using the keyword refugee, as in Refugee Resettlement Agency. The industry of Detensions is a jobs program for some.)

  64. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    And yet ya’ll proudly ‘dehumanize’ Trump (and by extension his supporters) by comparing him to Hitler.

  65. The New Victor says:

    Seen yesterday on Facebook: “The Bible was used by Nazis to justify The Holocaust.”

  66. Em says:

    OTF, perhaps you should travel to our southern border and give the boots on the ground there doing the impossible job of trying to handle a tidal wave of humanity the benefit of your knowledge. However, don’t confuse our bloated domestic prison situation with the situation being examined here.

    This isn’t going away and yes the emotional denigrating terms being tossed around will not improve anything. If we can do something positive and constructive we should do it. That is true. However, we are looking at a situation that can only be improved by intelligent, tough minds and tender hearts.

  67. Michael says:


    The private prison system is dependent on draconian drug and immigration laws.
    In more than one election where states have had referendums on decriminalizing marijuana the biggest financial opponents were the prison guard unions.

    It is assumed by many that what saved the big banks in the last crash was drug cash…someone has to launder all those billions…

  68. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    Damn, I always suspected those Hindus and Buddhists of being authoritarians.

  69. Michael says:


    I’m working (slowly) on a podcast about the issue of dehumanizing each other in our political discourse.

    While I think Trump is “human” only by species, some who voted for him are some of the finest people I know.
    The disconnect is jarring.

    I’m not a fan of much on the other side, either…

  70. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    Good news – it looks like Hitler/Trump is signing an executive order to end Obama era family separations.

  71. Michael says:

    I’m just going to say this here…when I spoke of what was going on in the Obama administration, (and I did, often) conservatives would tell me I was lying or faking numbers.

    Don’t tell me i was silent ..I wasn’t.

  72. Em says:

    Michael, i am aware of the prison mess. Not too far from where i live we have a prison full of basically decent people serving life sentences for being caught with marijuana years ago. There’s an opportunity for the President to grant a blanket amnesty.
    It is hard to put any trust in the world of finance
    The international and national banking industry is a greedy amoral one focused totally on $$s. I just had a conversation with someone who did not realize that the funds you “deposit” in a bank are no longer your money. All you have is a promise to pay you back when you ask, if they can…
    Keeping a government free of corruption is a historic problem that seems to be growing exponentially today. Common sense tells us it will take a tough minded sheriff, not a preacher to clean house. I am not saying that national repentance wouldn’t be a good thing. We should pray for it even as we pray for our nation’s leadership.
    People who are concerned that we might get a Hitler as we look for an answer to this mess are wise, but we need to recognize that Trump, with all his embarrassing peccadillos is no Hitler. Hitler and company weren’t tough, they were demonic. Living up here in the mountains i have come to appreciate people who are rough around the edges. They get the job done and annoy you to death while they do it. ?

    God keep us all focused and give us wisdom

  73. Outside T. Fold says:

    Em @ 66 / 9:41am —

    perhaps you should travel to our southern border and give the boots on the ground there doing the impossible job of trying to handle a tidal wave of humanity the benefit of your knowledge.

    I intend to write letters to go to those places, encouraging the ones working there to call on their deepest humanity in their dealings. I do not know if that will help ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ but I’ll do it. It will, at minimum, keep things at a heart level.

    If we can do something positive and constructive we should do it. That is true. However, we are looking at a situation that can only be improved by intelligent, tough minds and tender hearts.

    Yes. This. I am looking for what I can do that is constructive.

    At the heart of it all, there are humans who belong to each other who are being separated from each other. I fear that the policy for the last six weeks amounts to this nation kidnapping babies and young children and separating them forever from their parents.

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  74. Outside T. Fold says:

    oops. that didn’t quite work. It was ascii art of a mother holding a baby.
    from here: (6th one down)
    I’ll see myself out. I have some notes to write to border patrol staffers.
    Happy Summer Solstice, everyone. Be good to one another.

  75. Cash says:

    MLD, the reference to Godwin’s law was pretty funny. I had to look it up. Gave me a good chuckle.

  76. Em says:

    Godwin’s was our yardage store when i was a yute… My grandmother sewed and i was her gopher … Didn’t know they had a law, hope i didn’t break it. ?

  77. bob1 says:

    Here are 2 quotes. One’s from one of Trump’s half-wit advisors in a well-respected
    magazine. The other is from the Onion, a satirical newspaper. Guess which one is which.

    White House senior policy adviser Stephen Miller has all but become the face of the issue, a development that even supporters of Trump’s “zero-tolerance” position say is damaging the White House. “Stephen actually enjoys seeing those pictures at the border,” an outside White House adviser said. “He’s a twisted guy, the way he was raised and picked on. There’s always been a way he’s gone about this. He’s Waffen-SS.”

    Claiming that the publication of such a brief, tantalizing bit of audio was a breach of their journalistic responsibility, a furious Stephen Miller told reporters Tuesday that he was outraged at ProPublica for only releasing seven minutes of immigrant children sobbing. “It’s unacceptable that this so-called news organization saw fit to foist this total tease of a clip on the American public,” said Miller, who expressed frustration that the audio, in which 10 detained Central American children can be heard crying out for their parents, ended before reaching “the really good stuff.”

  78. bob1 says:

    #1 — Vanity Fair magazine article.

    #2 — Onion satire piece.

    Wow. Scary.

  79. Rick from Texas says:

    MLD, the proper use of “y’all” in your post would be “all y’all” 🙂

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