All I should ever need to say about Donald Trump

This is for those of you new activists who just can’t help yourself in turning my Facebook feed into a firehose of (nothing) to say about our new President- with misguided memes, faltering bleats directed against straw man arguments and news articles that I can easily read anywhere else, offered by you without comment (or a short dumb one because you have nothing helpful to add to the conversation), who have completely displaced my nice normal feed of cats, club sandwiches and cats with club sandwiches (not to mention my friends’ kids playing sports) with this piffle.

If I were to tell you how & where you’re academically wrong, you’ll think I’m defending him, so I’m going to show you how to put a little thought and research into what you have to say which -right or wrong- is so much better than your mindless Share-button slacktivism. No wonder Donald thinks you’re a loser. You’ve already proven yourself toothless. But you’re not going to read this. The rest of you will love this!

As you all know, I’ve given up on politics but consider myself (to steal a term from one of my old Profs) an archeologist of religion – to which politics are inextricably tied. My only interest in Donald Trump would be if there were some grand metaphysical model driving him. Sure enough, there is. To understand Donald is to know his churchin’ . We have to talk about Swedenborg, Megachurches, Jimi Hendrix and Oprah. A lot of this is new to me, as I don’t study modern religion because it’s too fragmented and fractious. But my central Thesis of religion is reaffirmed again and again, which I am delighted to see in new material.

Well! What a personality we have in Donald Trump. This is what you Libs get for chasing off the Conservatives. Are you happy now? You could debate Bill Buckley. You can’t debate this guy. He’ll just tell you that you suck. And conservatives: WHAT HAVE YOU DONE??! At what cost victory, King Pyrrhus? You had the upper hand in the “dignity of the office” conversation and this guy is going to destroy it without having one erogenous zone breached. So what exactly gives him the will to overpower us like this? Like I keep saying: History is fascinating but the motives behind the people who make it are even more so, as it invariably ends up being some goofy metaphysical interpretation.

It’s not always metaphysical. Bill Clinton is a super-smart dude. You know him if you read Carroll Quigley and through him, Cecil Rhodes. When Obama climbed wet-behind-the-ears out of the Faculty lounge, those on the watchtower alerted us to Saul Alinsky, Bill Ayers, Edward Said, Jeremiah Wright and his Dr. Strangelove: Zbignew Brzezinski-but Obama has a cadre of Jesuits just like any Republican would. Jimmy Carter also kept Brzezinski in a closet apartment like Lazlo from ‘Real Genius‘, but being a good Southern boy, was all for the new progressive evangelicalism.

Reagan consistently quoted Theosophist Manly Hall and was a known stargazer, but in an ecumenical move, Billy Graham helped him create the first post of Ambassador to the Holy See, something for which Truman got his ass handed to him. Was it just politics? No one ever really figured out what wind was under Reagan’s wings.

Hillary? What was she reading? Surely not the Hite Report. This is clearly a person without a driving philosophy beyond Beatified Assumption. She pulled a Bob Dole: “It’s my turn…plus I have a vagina. I don’t owe you anything”. And she got pretty well steamrolled (if you look outside of New York and California). Then she was suddenly a devout Methodist in her concession speech? The Clintons will seemingly throw anything against the wall to see what sticks (‘member when Bill was Pro-life?), but we will get back to Hillary’s Methodism later. Bill was working on his “electable” haircut at age 15 while Trump has been just moving forward like a bulldozer. He is going to succeed massively because he can’t recognize anything else, even when he fails. Here’s why:

This is a long chain and each link connects to the one before and after.

The Fredrick Trump family worshiped at Marble Collegiate Church in New York City. Methodist Minister of the Reformed Church of America, Norman Vincent Peale, famous for the book, “The Power of Positive Thinking” grew that church from 600 to to 5000 members. Peale married Donald to Ivana. Donald met Marla Maples in that church. Funeral services for Donald’s parents were held there. Donald routinely offers Peale as one of his favorite speakers. Trump hosted Peale’s 90th Bday party. Trump’s book, “Art of the Deal” alludes to Peale’s “Art of Living” radio show. Peale was also very close to the Nixons and Married Julie to David Eisenhower not to mention ministered to the family during the Watergate troubles.

Perhaps your grandparents remember him. Peale’s ‘Positive Thinking’ method offered higher satisfaction in life through affirmations and visualizations. His ‘Positive Imaging’ book is strong mix of theology & psychology. He established a religio-psychiatric outpatient center and wrote books with psychoanalyst Smiley Blanton until Mental Health associations disavowed Peale and Blanton distanced himself. Criticism includes the fact that Peale’s method is based on unsubstantiated anecdotes and not Empirical data. Hypnotists recognized that Peale’s methods include hypnosis, self and otherwise, concealed and otherwise. Eventually, Peale was criticized and eschewed by most religious communities as well as the mental health groups, not that his church got smaller. For this he got a 1984 Presidential Medal of Freedom. Where did Peale get his ideas? They ain’t Christian.

Not long before America’s Civil War (The War of Northern Aggression, for some of you) a guy with the finest snake oil salesman appellation ever given, Phineas Quimby, combined the philosophy of Emanuel Swedenborg with Franz Anton Mezmer’s theory of ‘Animal Magnetism’ to form ‘New Thought’. Basically, in “New Thought” positive energy and ‘good vibes’ are thought to influence physical life, right down to curing any disease. Mary Baker Eddy was under his care, but denied his influence in her forming the Christian Science movement, which clearly reflects his views. Quimby didn’t necessarily elucidate his views to the public, so Eddy felt free to steal and his proxies such as Emma Curtis Hopkins and Warren Felt Evans are given credit for “organizing” New Thought. Hopkins’ students, Charles & Myrtle Fillmore used “New Thought” to form the Unity Church (now Unitarian Universalist). Evans finally got everything into print incorporating Swedenborg’s influence. Swedenborg surmised that the Bible describes a human’s transformation from a materialistic to a spiritual being, which he calls rebirth or regeneration-similar to Gnostic Apotheosis or alchemical lead-to-gold exotericism.

The New Age / Christianity crossover scene went nuts with this- Harshing one’s mellow officially made you totally a negative-vibe merchant, man. Clearly Quimby’s positive energy and mesmerism is reborn in Peale’s affirmations/visualizations and suspected self-hypnosis. Quimby, Helena Blavatsky and Pierre Teilhard de Chardin are pretty much the axis upon which the entire modern New Age movement rotates.

But Peale did not put ‘New Thought’ into Methodism. That was done in the late 19th Century by Charles Wesley Emerson at Emerson college, under the influence of Henry Drummond, author of Natural Law in the Spiritual World. At Emerson, E. W. Kenyon, learned New Thought Methodism (Possibly urged by Ralph Waldo Trine, possibly urged by Ralph Waldo Emerson (a lot of Ralph Waldos out there) and became the “father of the New Faith movement”. The “New Faith movement” is the well from which your modern Televangelists spring. And from this eventually came Megachurches, Marble Collegiate being the first. So what do New Faith Teachers teach?

First, they teach that those freed by Christ’s sacrifice have been freed from the law and live in the Spirit. The theology mixes Joseph Benner’sI Am” – that God is all of us (Kabbalic Pantheism) with Phineas Quimby’s “New Thought”-that we all become equal to God (Gnostic Polytheism).

Word of Faith means: thoughts and words spoken aloud affect your physical world. This includes material gains and blessings of health.

“Believe & Receive”/Prosperity Theology/Positive Confession theology teaches that God wants you to be healthy and wealthy and you can do this by simply calling it into being. God wants you to rise above your condition and be successful so that you can do acts in God’s name. This is why Joel Olsteen thinks his giant house is from God. They teach that you can will success into being by “visualizing” and “Magnetizing” the needed elements for success- somewhere between “good thoughts bring good things” and God will reward you for acts with material wealth.

The idea from Kabbalah that words and their vibrations and resonance have magical interactions with the omnipresent power of the pantheistic God (God in everything)-especially how the universe was created via the Hebrew alphabet or the meditations on the 72 names of God to get through the gates of the Sephirot (or however it works) is a deep and fascinating one, but for our purposes let’s just say that Quimby’s ‘New Thought’ expresses it as ‘The Law of Attraction”. Pure New Agers call it ‘Thought Power”. It ties into their ‘we are energy’ ‘we are vibrations’, ‘at one with the universe’ and what have you.

Theosophist Helena Blavatsky wrote: “That which science calls gravitation, the ancients and the mediaeval hermetists called magnetism, attraction, affinity. It is the universal law, which is understood by Plato and explained in Timaeus as the attraction of lesser bodies to larger ones, and of similar bodies to similar, the latter exhibiting a magnetic power rather than following the law of gravitation.” ~Isis Unveiled., 1887

Annie Besant: “This is the secret of right receptivity. The mind responds according to its constitution. It answers to all that is a like nature with itself. We make it positive towards evil, negative towards good, by habitual thinking, thus building into its very fabric materials that are receptive of good, unreceptive of evil. We must think of that which we desire to receive, and refuse to think of that which we do not desire to receive.” ~Thought Power, Its Control and Culture, 1903

Today, people are not literate enough for passages like that so Joel Olsteen has dumbed it down to: “Your words affect your future” just “Believe, Visualize and speak out loud”. “You’ve got to send your words out in the direction you want your life to go,” “Words are like seeds, when you send them out- if continue to believe them and listen to them, they can come to a reality.” “Like a magnet, we draw in what we are constantly thinking about.”

Sounds just like Deepak Chopra, right?

Gloria Copeland thinks that you can control the weather in this way.

They also teach that you are a god. The “Little gods” doctrine states that as you are a child of God made in God’s image, you are in fact, a ‘little god”.

Paula White, present personal minister to Donald Trump, will chair the Evangelical Advisory Board in his Presidential administration. She is also the “personal life coach” of Tyra Banks, has ministered to Michael Jackson & Darryl Strawberry and curiously is married to the Keyboard player for Journey, Jonathan Cain. She has expressed the New Faith Little gods Doctrine:
“You tap into what you really are. Do you know what the Bible calls you? It says you are little Elohim. You are a little god.”

Here are other examples:
Kenneth Copeland (student of Ken Hagin, student of E.W. Kenyon):
“You are anything that he is” “You don’t have a God in you. You are one.” “When I read in the Bible where he {Jesus} says ‘I am.’ I just smile and say, ‘I am, too!’ (video)
Benny Hinn: “You say, ‘Benny Hinn, am I a little god?’ You’re a son of God aren’t you? You’re a child of God aren’t you? …What else are you? Quit your nonsense. What else are you? If you say ‘I am’ you are saying I am a part of him. Is he God? Are you his offspring? Are you his children? You can’t be human.” (video)
TD Jakes: “When God created Adam…God said, “I wanted to see what I looked like, so I made you to be my image. You have my DNA You {are} created out of me. You are a derivative of me.” (video)
Earl Paulk: “Adam and Eve were placed in the world as the seed and expression of God. Just as dogs have puppies and cats have kittens, so God has little gods. Until we comprehend that we are little gods and begin to act like little gods, we can not manifest The Kingdom of God.”
Many more in my notes.

They also teach that Jesus’ spirit left the cross,”became sin” and went to Hell for three days to personally fight and overcome Satan, but that is beyond the scope of the Trump discussion.

Now to switch gears without a clutch for a moment

Existentialist Peter Drucker is the father of the modern Corporation. The original concept was almost communist. A corporation was to be a community wherein all involved shared in the success of the corporation, making people feel part of something bigger than themselves, thus healing existential alienation brought on by displacement of modern technologies. He grew up Lutheran in a house where politicians, intellectuals & scientists like Friedrich Hayek hung out, but was more interested in Keynes’ “Behavior of Commodities” which changed his management style to be based on personal relationships, not number crunching. He admired Zen Buddhism and Martin Buber’s existential “I & Thou” theology. Drucker adopted Kirkegaard’s notion of upper & lower duality of life (provable absolutes/improvable in-absolutes -similar to exotericism/esotericism in mystery religions or Sartre/Heidegger’s inner & outer worlds).  As a social ecologist and management consultant he helped develop the first MBA programs. He brought order, hierarchical structure, growth plans to the Red Cross, Girl Scouts and invented concepts of “Management by Objectives” and “Knowledge Workers” and espoused importance of Marketing. He was given a 2002 Presidential Medal of Freedom.

Drucker did not self-identify as a born-again Christian, but after seeing Nazism & Communism, determined that Western Civ was fundamentally sick and ascertained that the key to social reform was Churches (owing to masses of people being influenced, not in correction of sin), so sought to bring corporate structure to evangelical church communities. He saw that they got things done.

When Robert Schuller of Crystal Cathedral fame wanted to grow his church exponentially, he contacted Peter Drucker and Norman Vincent Peale. They got together and established the ‘Institute for Church Growth’. Drucker’s Protégé, Bob Buller created the “Leadership Network” which has touched almost every recognizable church out there. Two of the institute’s best students were Rick Warren and Bill Hybels, Pastors of two of the largest megachurches in America. What do the Megachurch progeny of ‘Institute for Church Growth’ teach?

Follow along now. This is when it starts getting scary.

Megachurches have only one goal: Growth. They are called “seeker-sensitive” meaning they want only unchurched people to come in and they openly refer their ministries as a “product”.

The theology is mostly based in self-fulfillment & acts in the name of God replacing a true relationship with God. Schuller was the self-esteem preacher. Similarly, Rick Warren says that “God is happiest when you have unlocked your personal potential” in vocation & charity while repeating “It’s not about Me”. No message of repentance or sin is given, as if acts are method to salvation, not the result of being saved. Bill Hybels redefines sin as ‘flawed ways to gain personal fulfillment’. To these people, feeding the poor or fighting AIDS is the path to Heaven.

Now let’s talk about this sticky subject of hypnosis and self-hypnosis. The nice thing about this is that it is not alleged by people with vendettas against preachers, or anti-religion people or conspiracy theorists. It was noticed by hypnotists. They watch Norman Peale and said, “Yep, he read our books”. Just like anyone evaluating a Megachurch management structure can say “Yep, these guys read Drucker”.

It’s not anything magical, it just a way clever people have figured out to get to your decision making process while you are unaware, usually because your ego is being stroked. Peale’s “visualizations” were to be focused upon to a degree that excludes normal, discerning thought, right into auto-hypnosis. Peale then endorsed New Age authors who promoted hypnosis and guided imagery as a means to help with visualizations. Most religions incorporate some kind of trance or chanting. Despite Biblical admonishments against “vain repetitions…they think they will be heard for their many words”, you have mantras, chants and meditations on the name of God. Praying the Rosary has been called the same, as they resemble Hindu prayer beads. Theosophist Annie Besant wrote:

“Memorize a number of short affirmations, invocations or aphorisms, and begin each day by saying one. If at any time during the day your mind is unoccupied, repeat the saying silently to yourself. An example of one is the following; ‘From the unreal, lead me to the real, From darkness lead me to light, from death lead me to immortality, Peace to all beings.'”

Rick Warren calls for you to learn “Breath Prayers” to recite with almost every breath, which are no different than mantras. “Emerging” churches tout mystical contemplative prayer in the vein of Richard Foster and Dallas Willard or Brennan Manning, or even the third century Desert Fathers of North Africa. This is not true prayer, but shutting off your mind as much as possible which is supposed to put you into an alpha-wave trance wherein your mind becomes open to influence. Mystical chant music does the same.

When you groove, you stop thinking and become open to ideas.  Jimi Hendrix and Timothy Leary talked about this extensively. Corporate Churches are all about marketing and Neuromarketing is not off the table. This has been in political marketing for a very long time, too. There is nothing on the Earth more high-stakes than a US Presidential election and Neuromarketing is used for much lesser products. How else could this work?

We all know that our internet experience is shaped largely by algorithms on Google and Facebook servers. They know us better than we do and know our motivations because all of humanity acts in predictable fractal-like patterns. They record every single thing you do down to things you erased and rewrote in a Facebook field before you hit “post”. Somewhere on a Google server(s) sits effectively a record of your subconscious that they use to create an echo chamber for you that feeds your ego. An echo is a mantra. What do they use it for? To sell you stuff. They sell you objects and they sell you philosophies. They influence your politics just like they sell you Snickers bars. You know that the word ‘narcissism’ is a buzzword these days. A narcissistic person is more susceptible to the echo chamber because it strokes their ego. You keep hearing what you want to hear and get sold a lot of B.S. with it. So a narcissistic culture is cultivated by those selling to you objects and politics.

Think about your most annoying internet friend that assaults you non-stop with political emails and Facebook posts. This person is kind of smart but not as smart as he or she thinks. This person feels called to enlighten the masses like Jehovah’s Witnesses feel called to show up unannounced at your door every other Saturday. This person has politics zipper-locked to Ego and is angry, snarky and condescending and is indifferent to your fatigue or annoyance at their deluge. They may have lots of supporting data memorized but no understanding of the other side of the debate, only the straw man that has been fed through some manner of demagogue or pundit. John Stewart or Stephen Colbert make you feel witty and sell you a line to whip out on social media. Rush Limbaugh and NPR spend a lot of time telling their audiences how intelligent they are. In this, the fine art of rhetoric is murdered. In every good debate I’ve watched, the guy who gets to speak first begins by reciting what the other guy is going to say and proceeds to smash it into 1000 pieces. Then the other guy starts his side of the debate by picking up his own pieces. No one has this skill now. No one knows the other side of the debate. And the less they are able to, the haughtier they become, because they can only perceive their own echo.

In these churches you are fed a constant stream of self-worth, self esteem and assurance that your decisions are backed by the Almighty and that you wield holy power, backed with mantras & contemplative thought. It’s a different kind of echo chamber. Then they cross! Your religio-political friend says, “How can you be a Christian if you support that or don’t support this!”- all based on some spoon-fed concept of social justice that has been sold to them that completely ignores the corruption of the system that touts their issue, not based on their own work.

So the only metric these churches care about is growth. How much growth are we talking? Rick Warren’s Saddleback church has a mere 20,000 weekly members. It’s in the American top 10 Megachurches, but not a pimple on the rear of David Yongii Cho’s church of 830,000 in South Korea. Rick’s book “The Purpose-Driven Life” is one of the best selling books of all time. In 2005, Rwanda’s president Paul Kagame called Rick Warren and said that he read “Purpose-Driven Life” and invited Saddleback to provide management training through Rick’s P.E.A.C.E.* plan (featuring Drucker’s 3-legged stool concept) to create the first “purpose-driven country”. Soon, other African leaders were interested and now Warren hosts an annual 30+leader African summit in hopes of creating the first purpose-driven continent. Since most Catholics are non-committal or only participate on major holidays, Warren is probably the most influential person on the planet speaking on behalf of the lord.

*P.E.A.C.E. stands for Plant Churches, Equip servant leaders, Assist the poor, Care for the sick, Educate the next generation
unless there are Muslims in the crowd, then P = Promote reconciliation.

HuffPo recently tried to make a scandalous story out of “Trump’s Minister” Paula White “bilking” her followers out of money which is “… a tactic that other religious leaders frown upon.” Say WHAT? The New Faith and seeker-sensitive guys have been raking money in by the bulldozer-push for decades! You ever go to McDonald’s in suburban Georgia and count the “Lord’s Gym: His Pain My Gain” T Shirts?
They are all under tax investigation, the bankrupt Crystal Cathedral had to be sold to the Roman Catholic Church, all of these guys take the money to the grave and they want to freak out and call her a charlatan for asking for $115??? HuffPo have nothing to say about Paula’s “little gods” doctrine and they have little to say about Obama sidling up to Rick Warren in 2008 and less to say about Warren’s Inaugural invocation for Obama where Warren referred to God and Jesus in idioms of Islam (the Jesus who is not divine, The God who does not need offspring, with which some Christians have a problem) again and again.

And Oprah is selling this stuff like crazy. She has given T.D. Jakes a television show. She features Rick Warren or Joel Olsteen at every round-table. She pushes positive-thinking New Agers like Marianne Williamson, who just repackages Helen Schucman’s ‘A Course in Miracles’ (supposedly automatically written by Jesus) for a modern generation- selling millions of books. She is clearly a disciple of New Thought, and has profound influence over a very large number of people. She single-handedly put the “The Secret” at the top of the Best-Seller list (here’s a tip: The Secret is ‘The Law of Attraction’). Oprah preys on low-self-esteem women worse than Charlie Sheen. She sells self-esteem in a way that makes Robert Schuller’s Cathedral look like a lemonade stand. Her level of New Agerism makes Shirley MacLaine look like…well I can’t think of anyone who isn’t ultimately a New Ager.

And now you know why Hillary is a Methodist. It’s code for New Age Thought Power. Put a Christian name on something and the rubes in flyover country will be none the wiser.

So here is the evolved, matured world of Norman Vincent Peale (and Phineas Quimby) and the world that produced Donald Trump: A New Age/Church Corporation that teaches that you are the same as God and can call forth victory and success by sheer will and vision. The result of Acts mean more than the motivations behind them and justify the means to them. He’s a garden-variety New-Ager with Jesus-y words all over it. One small piece of my politics:  To me, a Republican sees the only way to help the economy is to get out of the way of it.  But he wants to make deals and tweak things.  That’s big-D Democrat in my book. It used to be small government vs big government.  Now it’s big government vs. freaking huge, all-encompassing government. That’s all we’re dealing with, here. There are no good guys.

So Trump has the will and strength to simply step out of piles of muck and move on. Bankruptcy? Infidelity? That’s in the past, brother. It’s funny to me that no one has compared this to Hillary’s ability to step out of scandal after scandal while her business associates go to jail or end up dead while she shimmies out with her ambition and white-knuckle grip on the coat tails intact. It’s not coincidence that she and Donald have the same religion.

And if you think this is small potatoes, you are fooling yourself. If you Bill Nye pimps think some grand, secular enlightenment is coming and the religions will be exposed as daft, don’t hold your breath. This stuff is taking over the world and has a secular side and a “spiritual” side.  Popular Christianity will just write out and diminish Jesus and re-define itself as a collection of cultural dress and songs, while elevating the accomplishments of man. It will have as goals things like picking up highway trash, not surrendering to Jesus. And even the New-agers, including the ones who claim to be atheist are usually Quimby-ites whether they know it or not. “Gee Whiz, Aw shucks, I just speak for the little guy” politics are dead. Stop letting them sell to you that way. You live in a world of high tech manipulation and I see manipulated people every day. They scream it at me.

As Bill Cooper would say: “The Truth Doesn’t Matter. What the people with the money and power over you believe is what matters, because it is going to affect your life.” So you might as well familiarize yourself with some of these concepts. If you live through this in continued haughty ignorance, that just means more bad things for my Facebook wall.

Published 13Jan17
25Jan17 Addendum:

Four days after I wrote this, Dilbert’s Scott Adams appears in a podcast and declares that as a trained hypnotist, he recognizes the Trump has been trained at the very least in “persuasive body language”. If you could identify it, you would see it in the Megachurch preachers all of the time.

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One Response to All I should ever need to say about Donald Trump

  1. Kimberly Fracassi says:

    I have to read this ten times. So much stuff.

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