January-February 2015

 The Catholicist Nation

On Trimming

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Do not be idolaters, as some of them were, as it is written, "The people sat down to eat and drink, and then stood up to play."

- I Corinthians 10:7

 

In the middle of the road, you see the darnedest things.

- The Pretenders (Learning to Crawl, 1984)

 

Sometimes when I feel frustration beholding the foolish things people do, my soul shouts "Thank you for not smoking!" I do this because it is what Opus, the iconic character from my favorite comic strip Bloom County did one time when the visceral longings of his soul were graphically depicted in an episode back in 1986.

Opus had this deep-seeded desire to hose down disrespectful smokers... but didn't. The image here is just what's in his soul. Instead he employed that standard self-constraint, which is what I do also. Resigned? Yes. Sharing a bit of gracious deference? Yeah. Still, the ::sigh::...

Much of the resilience in the face of such a condition comes from just knowing that Jesus is Grace. He's Truth, too, so there is that overriding feeling of "You can boldly stand by Truth and still let it go."

But there remains the disappointment. I've even made reference to it before in this endeavor: While smoking is one thing, what about the other lunacies people firmly believe and stridently express? Things that are much more destructive?

"Descent with modification is the way species formed."

"I don't like abortion but it's okay if someone else wants to do it."

"People should be free to do whatever they want with their sexuality."

"If you censure a person of color it must be racism."

"There is no God, and if you prove me wrong I'll just say there is no way anyone can really know."

Get out the fire hose... "Thank you for not being an idiot!"

Of course this is one reason why I write. I've been a fool too. It's been ugly. I know, I understand. I've needed a fire hose pointed at me often enough.

That's why I know how much I need Him.

The key to acceptance of the way things are by virtue of the way people think is in the understanding God gives us, through Scripture, about the way He's made things. There is a Kingdom into which He's invited people to dwell with Him.

 Each individual has chosen to go off and do rotten things, however, and his/her mind is so benighted that it rationalizes everything on his/her behalf worse, on his/her group or nation's behalf. It all does make perfect sense. If you're going to wreck lives, you've got to commit acts of human sacrifice to cover for it. Whether it is deceit, murder, fraud, theft, or the most wretched folly, it is all the rabid execution of standard practice human sacrifice.

Enter the World System and the one whom God sent out to fulfill the requisite prosecution of its law. Cain's legacy is all about cracking heads of those whose souls dwell in their own darkness. Cain is in the darkness himself, so he's great with keeping people there using a strength seven times greater than anyone else. His challenge is to keep people from seeing that, so his minions go to great lengths to disguise his intentions.

At one point in history God entered the scene in the Person of Jesus Christ, for one purpose: To rescue the man and woman from that darkness. And He did it with the one human sacrifice that mattered.

Himself.

Come to Him, and you're free. Stay in your darkness, and you're still a slave and as such still subject to the thousands of ways Cain regulates your behavior, most of which are assembled and propagated to make you feel really good in spite of your desperate situation.

 

I came across a beautiful rendition of Cain's supreme mission in Cass Sunstein's book Conspiracy Theories and Other Dangerous Ideas, a compendium of his published works all about getting people to stay chained to the World. Sunstein is a Harvard professor with quite a reputation among conservatives for eloquently disseminating the liberal agenda they pretty much hate the guy.

Therein lies much of his success, however. Keep people in a state of enraged rebellion against the state for the purpose of securing more legitimacy for the state. If done well it can be ingeniously proficient, and Conspiracy Theories is indeed chock full of fluently logical arguments for World System cohesion.

I believe the giveaway is not with his somewhat renowned piece on conspiracy theories which I do address in a new page in the webzine here  but it is in the last chapter on trimming.

Yeah, I thought the same thing. Trimming? What is that?

Sunstein takes a bit of an archaic reference to elaborate on the idea of finding the things about people's different perspectives and working to come to some agreement for the purpose of making reasonable public policy. It isn't compromise or moderation or gravitating to the middle of the ideological spectrum, though those things are certainly a part of it.

It is, well, trimming.

The key point is that as I read through his proposition, as I wound my way through all the casuistry, sophistry, dissembling all brilliant strategies of the best World operatives I could not help but think about the most literal definition of the term "trimming".

Trimming, v.  1. To reduce the size, amount, or number of something. 2. To make something neat or the required size or form by cutting away irregular or unwanted parts. Syn. cutting, cropping, clipping, shearing.

Really, what is it Sunstein is doing speaking for the deepest politics Operatives who pay him what is it he's really doing to people when he convinces them of the most glorious trimming benefits?

It is nothing other than the authorized inducement of value extraction among the population he's charged with governing. Or, in other words, he's officially arranging the rationalization for

Human sacrifice.

 

How could this be human sacrifice? Nobody's really being killed.

Here's the key question.

Does being killed mean it happens all in one moment?

Or could a process of a death extend over any period of time, even years, if the cause of that death is precisely what trimming actually means? Hacking, chopping, slicing off parts of your very soul, your heart, even your physical body until the accumulation of all the trimming does end up killing you.

Yes. Hmm-hmm. I'd say that's human sacrifice.

It's particularly relevant not just because everyone does it, but because everyone is so eager to know the ways to do it best. This is why there are extraordinarily smart people like Sunstein to provide the handbook for it! There are a thousand wholesome ways to live while still doing magnificent acts of human sacrifice.

There is only one way not to do it at all, and that is to be in the embrace of Christ who already did any sacrificing one needs done.

The most prominent ways Sunstein labors gallantly as a leading human sacrifice facilitator is once holding the top administrator position of the impressive-sounding Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs. He was certainly there to institutionally promulgate the ideas in his most well-received work, Nudge, written with behavioral economist Richard Thaler, a book that espouses a principle called libertarian paternalism. This is the idea that government must be on the forefront of directing and molding and guiding human behavior, just like a father (the "paternal" part) so that one can be truly free (the "libertarian" part).

But then, all this is really just The Law. That's it, that's pretty much what the law is. Call it something nice and splendid like "libertarian paternalism" ("Oooo, interesting...") it's still just the burdensome oppression of a law that ultimately tells us we're wicked to the core.

Now what?

Sunstein thinks the answer is in trimming. While his elucidation of what it takes to identify the real costs of decisions and even of errors is spot-on, he can only go as far as the World he inhabits tells him to. How exactly do we identify those things? Sunstein can only rehash all the old ideas about Hegelian synthesizing, really, that's all his treatise entails. Just find the good things in each individual or group's idea, and pick and pull and pluck and push and paste and voilà! a new and wonderful thing!

Getting right down to it, his trimming has nothing to do with everyone coming to some genuine understanding of truthful things. It is only about getting people to buy into the System line by appearing and sounding very magnanimous. In his attempt to reinvent synthesis and make it shiny and sparkly, it'll sound really fabulous to the entrenched Catholicist but it can never address the core issue.

Man's sin.

Only Christ can do that.

Look at all those issues. Abortion. Gun control. Immigration. Marriage and family. Taxes and government spending. War. Crime and mental health. Racism. Sunstein brings up a few of them to do his trimming thing. No matter what he'll always come up way short. Every one of these things have myriad parts that are complex and diverse. Trying to "trim" and come up with some overriding "truth" is a fool's errand Caesar gives to people like Sunstein.

But no worries, again, he's supposed to be doing it. Otherwise everyone would be dead. As it is, Cain's agency does its job well to keep murderers from doing too much murdering, especially with people like Sunstein at the mouthpiece, until...

Until some may just find liberation in Christ.

For you see, once again, every issue every problem every concern every worry every fear every conflict every spat every conflagration every single thing anyone considers in any way has its eventual resolution in Christ. He is, as I've said in another place in this webzine, not the synthesis but the suprathesis. The inordinately numerous manifestations of this thing law already comprise thousands of syntheses; Truth and Grace are together as the essence of His one single expression miraculous, chartiable, merciful, overflowing. His approach to any and all this goes beyond whatever piddly dialectic efforts the World can dish out.

Essential for the "trimming" argument is the zealous avoidance of extremism. Oh, how much we are told about the evils of extremism! But think about it. No matter what you believe about whatever thing you believe in, isn't that belief by definition an extreme one? Even if you believe in nothing, then you are extremely a believer in nothing one way or another. Even if you believe in not really believing things, then you must do that extremely. Even if you hate extremism, then aren't you an extremist against extremism?

This is why the Kingdom approach is all for extremism. Extremism in wisdom. Extremism in incisively understanding things as they are. Extremism in knowing the truth while at the same time exhibiting generous grace.

Extremism in loving another rather extremely.

That it is so extreme is why it requires The Suprathesis.

Or, as He is more commonly known...

The Living Word.

 

Sunstein and his cohorts are quite valiant, they are. They are bold and articulate and relentless. They are committed and industrious and well-paid. They are extremists of the most extreme kind slathering it with all kinds of claims to be extremely broad-minded and hip and happy.

Wait. His cohorts?

The most grand display of World Operative activity on the visible plane I've seen occurred on a quite celebrated finale of a quite celebrated television endeavor, The Colbert Report.

Stephen Colbert has used the most cutting, sardonic, ribald humor to fill up the bilge pump of World gospel thought. It is phenomenally effective. Millions are captivated by the things he says about things, much of which involves the brilliant play on the caricature he's made of himself. He'll even skewer often quite accurately! the truth claims of foolish people by championing "truthiness." It's a riot!

Except that the unwitting, unknowing, uninitiated, and unaware of the more subtly stylized arts of war don't realize that Colbert's rich Roman Catholic heritage makes him the perfect tool for World System indoctrination.

So in the final episode before he moved on to prepare for more of the same, taking over for David Letterman in his late night slot in May, he invited about a hundred celebrity musicians, actors, filmmakers, writers, even political and economic figures to show up. With delightfully smiley faces pasted upon all, they not only gave Colbert the grand send-off but confidently demonstrated that much of what the people are told about the World is just spectacular show business, glamorous window-dressing, the profoundly elaborate ruse for the divine purpose of keeping a reprobate populace in check.

Amusingly, the week before Colbert even had president Barack Obama make an appearance, and would you know it, Obama actually "took over the show." He sat in Colbert's seat, read things on the teleprompter that were witty and jovial it's all just entertainment anyway.

Here's the website, by the way, with the list of the A-listers. You'll see this photograph is just a snapshot of a few of them. The stage was filled with many more. [Another site with them is here.]

Some individuals of note included Trevor Potter, former chair of the Federal Election Commission Colbert certainly has Caesar's imprimatur. David Leonhardt was there, he's the new New York Times web guru got to have the latest I.T. going for the best System program dispersion. The Colbert chaplain showed up, Jim Martin he's not merely a Roman Catholic priest but he's a Jesuit who is also editor-at-large for America, the journalistic conveyance of the most crisply trimmed Jesuit thought into the mainstream. (None are pictured in this particular photograph.)

So many more I could introduce...

All of them trimming trimming trimming on your behalf, making sure that whoever you are has been trimmed down to precisely what Cain has always wanted you to be, a slab of human flesh and soul on the System's altar of the most ruthless value extraction.

I do want to point out that, quite tellingly, the very last individual mentioned in the entire list was, indeed...

Cass Sunstein.

In fact there he is, at the very far right in the photograph. And look at the direction of his gaze. It really does appear as though he's relishing the bountiful product of his work, all these people vitally instrumental at getting Americans to be that much more Americanist, soaking up the System's charm, doing lots of trimming themselves, being more comfortable in their rationalizing...

 

Wouldn't it be something if they were being freed. 

 

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Notes:

  • Here's that link to the Entertainment Weekly website that put together the list of all the Colbert Report finale attenders. [March 2015 note: It seems some of the photos from that site have been removed. Here is another site with them intact, at least at this point in time.]

  • A Time article about the impact of Jim Martin is here. Martin, by the way, was in the very middle of all those at the finale, and it could more accurately be said Sunstein is merely a pawn under his direction of Cain's effort here.

  • Colbert's technique reminds me of that used by Otpor to bring attention to autocratic items that need fomenting against. I wrote a home page piece on that a few years ago.

  • What is it with a soul really feeling it regarding evil? It is not unusual. One, parts of Scripture called imprecatory Psalms are the most visceral expressions of how much it hurts when rotten people do what they do. Read a few, start with the 70th Psalm, that's a good short one. Two, people who censure those whose souls feel it so deeply, usually in the name of "peace" and "tolerance", not only fail to realize their brazen inconsistency, but have no conception of the reality of evil and ultimately have nothing to say.

  • The page where I refer to the principle of a suprathesis is here.

  • A previous home page piece about how Jesus responded to the lunatic ideas of those around Him is here. Another home page piece related to the principles elucidated above, "on obedience to the understanding," is here.

  • Here is the link to the new page with the response to Sunstein's "Conspiracy Theories" paper.

  • The World System's genesis is described here, with a brief explanation about why Cain's charge is indeed a divinely authorized one. Much more on human sacrifice is here. People may be in churches that actually keep them from the fullness of Christ's embrace. How that happens is on this page.

  • [March 2015 note: I must add that I have a feeling that those whose god is sex may see some subliminal sexual connotation in the image of Opus and the fire hose above. Those whose god is some civil rights crusade may be offended by the use of a fire hose on someone. For one, the image is the image, a single frame in a strip that profoundly illustrates a particular point - as succinctly described above - having nothing to do with those preconceptions. Two, this is one of the reasons people remain blind and deaf to the gospel - they hold so tightly to their idols. It is grievous, indeed.]

  • The One Who Actually Frees. A terrific chapter from Scripture upon which to meditate in light of this nightmare is the fourth one from the second letter to the Corinthians. It is so awesome I've provided the link for you here.

 

 

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This page was originally posted by David Beck at yourownjesus.net on March 31, 2015