GOP Self-destruction and Its War on Truth

Several times during the Obama administration I listened to Republicans passionately declare, “President Obama is out to destroy the Republican Party.”  It was apparent that their collective unconscious was speaking as the seeds of self-destruction were obviously ravaging their party.  During the Tea Party hey-day, many GOP stalwarts from earlier Republican Presidential administrations would say such things as, “We’ve been hijacked” in recognition of the incipient catastrophe that was unfolding.  And as the Trump madness gained strength during the 2016 campaign, most of his party’s leadership actively opposed him until it became apparent he was going to win then they sheepishly came on board.

Donald Trump is the embodiment of the poison that has been seeking expression in the GOP for decades as the party’s leadership pointedly followed a pathway of dishonesty and fraud, featuring a conspicuous disdain for truth.  Their “war on reality” is now on the surface and finds expression almost daily with Trump’s overt and flagrant dishonesty.  Stephen Colbert introduced the term “truthiness” several years ago in reference to how media often was very manipulative and dishonest with the news.  But now the Trump administration has followed this practice that was so conspicuous in his campaign with an even more overt disavowal of basic standards of truth.  Trump and his staff now openly declared that he has the right to say whatever is on his mind regardless of whether or not it is valid according to prevailing standards of truth and non-truth.

The failure to respect truth in this self-destructive tendency of the GOP  puts on the table the over whelming support of evangelical Christians.  These purported champions of Jesus Christ, who claimed to be, “The Way, the Truth, and Life” are openly supporting this man who is the blatant antithesis to the fundamental tenets of the teachings of Jesus.  I suspect that many of them now see they’ve been duped but, suffering from the same spiritual malady of Trump, they cannot utter the simple words, “I made a mistake” even though their very valid faith permits them to do so if they have the humility to admit human flaw.

The irony is that challenges to Trump’s moral and spiritual integrity have come, not from these evangelicals, but from those who do not wear their faith on their sleeve or who are not even Christian.  For example, Kazir Khan was the first to openly question the moral character of Trump.  And more recently, Congressman Mark Sanford (see yesterday’s blog) and Senator John McCain have boldly stated the obvious that Trump has trouble separating “truth from lies.” (https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/feb/18/john-mccain-savages-donald-trump-administration-inability-separate-truth-from-lies

Though no longer an evangelical, I still have a passionate conviction that life is a spiritual enterprise.  As someone said, and I paraphrase, “Mankind is a spirit having an earthly moment.”  In the words of Teilhard de Chardin, the “Cosmic Christ’ is seeking expression in the whole of this cosmic enterprise that we are inextricably caught up in.  It is important that men and women of spiritual sensitivity be present to speak “truth to power” on occasion and that can’t be done when one’s “spirituality” consists primarily of sterile dogma and rhetoric.  I am very impressed with people such as Mark Sanford and John McCain who have faith of an “uncanned” variety and who aren’t wearing their “faith” on their sleeve.  Those who do carry only this simplistic faith Shakespeare described with the following keen wisdom:

When love (i.e. “faith”) begins to sicken and decay,/It useth an enforced ceremony./There are no tricks in plain and simple faith./But hollowmen, like horses hot at hand,/Make gallant show and promise of their mettle.

When “Truth” is not given reverence and allowed to permeate the whole of our being, individually and collectively, self-destruction is encouraged as illustrated by the Republicans.  Again, as Shakespeare put it, we then begin to “feed even on the pith of life.”

 

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5 thoughts on “GOP Self-destruction and Its War on Truth

  1. Jamie Carter

    I worry most that Trump will be all like: “Trust me: You can’t trust the news to tell you truth about anything.”
    And when the news is all lie: “Trump is up to some major shenanigans!”
    People will be like: “We can’t trust the news that says that Trump is up to something because Trump says you can’t trust the news.”
    There’s a reason why freedom of press is a big deal; and when you can’t take away freedom, all that’s left is to undermine trust. When that happens, terrible things follow.

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    1. literarylew Post author

      So true Jaimie. That is what worries me so much. So many are completely enthralled by him. We have to hope that men and women of character in the GOP who value something other than political power will come to the fore and stand for Value that is beyond themselves. Really tough times. Thanks very much for dropping by.

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  2. Phillip Brande

    I think you are a little off in this post. Some of the truths you proclaim here and view points are a little odd to me. You are able to say anything you want concerning Trump but deny him the same privilege. Your truth is molded by what you have heard through media and other outlets and their spin on things and it has blinded you to what is really going on. This response is not intended to be taken as slamming you or hostile toward you in anyway. However this post will just be taken as every other bashing Trump news/blog/ media, 1/2 will ignore it while others will agree with it emotionally. It doesn’t make the case for truth that you think it makes. The truth is – today everyone is making their own version of the truth based on misinformed facts, this blog post is no different.

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    1. literarylew Post author

      Thank you my friend and astute reader! I’m working on a blog re this very idea. For, we only have a skewed view of the world and it is so easy to not realize that “wherein we judge we shall also be judged.” I have been watching Fox News recently and noticed this so clearly about them. They are so quick to point out the liberal bias but fail to realize their own…just as I am wont to do. Stay turned and you will see me address this issue. The key is finding common ground.

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