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Hired pen since 1998. Email wiredgourmet at gmail dot com. Visit me at YouTube for coffee and a snack: https://www.youtube.com/c/wiredgourmet
“When an AI-bot and a failed human love each other very much…” (Courtesy C-Span, public domain)

Back in my old Bronx neighborhood, we kids were taught by Catholic sisters whose lessons I found deeply persuasive. I loved religion class because I believed what they told us: that God was everywhere, protecting us, guiding us, and, at times — with wisdom and infinite love — disciplining us. I could feel his presence during Mass, of course, and sometimes in the playground, but never more vividly than in my room, alone, when I would finish my bedtime prayers by pillow-screaming “F****CK!” with such force that my voice would crack into a dry shriek like a sax blown so…


Blessed are the CEOs (courtesy Elvert Barnes via Wikimedia)

Alarmed by signs that the Biden Administration might begin clawing back a trivial fraction the Trump-era’s corporate tax cuts, or might symbolically soften a few inconsequential austerity measures, poor and working-class Republicans have begun supporting a new political action committee (PAC) created to ensure that corporate welfare is sustained, even at their expense. The PAC, called Showers of Gold, was formed by Steve Bannon and Steve Mnuchin and has raised an estimated $78 million in its first month. …


Let us pray (courtesy C-Span)

Previously:
Chapter One: A Kremlin miracle
Chapter Two: The louche messiah
Chapter Three: Hoping for the best

_______________
America’s religious leaders were bewildered and discouraged. God had clearly chosen Donald Trump to become the US president, yet folly and failure clung to him. The Coronavirus pandemic should have been his moment to rise up and emerge as possibly the greatest American president of the 21st Century, but he instead shrank from the challenge of guiding the nation to victory over its enemy, offering fatuous platitudes in place of leadership.

Would God finally animate Donald with his Holy Spirit at this…


Girding for battle, 27 February 2020 (courtesy C-Span)

Previously:
Chapter One: A Kremlin miracle
Chapter Two: The louche messiah

_______________
Members of America’s Religious Right prayed strenuously for guidance, insight, and understanding, but God remained silent. He spoke to no one. He explained nothing. “Lord, we beseech you in the name of the United States, your most holy and most beloved nation. Will you abandon your children in our time of need?” they cried, but in reply they heard only the echoes of their own words.

American religious leaders believed that God had positioned Donald Trump to launch a spectacular federal response against the plague — a challenge…


A spiritual calling, no doubt (Courtesy U.S. National Archives)

Previously:
Chapter One: A Kremlin miracle

_______________
As the Spring of 2016 approached, it became clear that the New Yorker Donald Trump would be the Republican nominee. Many struggled to explain this stunning development in rational terms. Only the most pious Americans realized that the will of the Lord was involved.

The people were much amused. Donald’s ideas and manner of speech were offensive, but the public found him unpredictable and entertaining. They were eager to hear what he might say next, so the news and social media overflowed with Donald. He offended entire groups with puerile insults: women, ethnic…


‘Never forget what I taught you, Joe, and one day you’ll be giving me one of these.’ (Courtesy the White House)

A hot microphone caught U.S. President Elect Joe Biden lamenting the run-off victories of Georgia Democrats Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff, who will now give his party a slim majority in the Senate.

“At least when Barack was president, we could blame McConnell’s obstruction for our utter failure to help the working class. He was such a perfect, textbook villain; no one noticed the snarling contempt we felt toward ordinary Americans,” Biden whined.

Vice President Elect Kamala Harris was in tears as she nodded in agreement. “We might have to disappoint our Silicon Valley and Wall Street sponsors with a…


Photo by Steve Harvey on Unsplash

In the primary season of the 58th quadrennial US election, the Lord summoned Vladimir Putin to the Cathedral of the Dormition, to a secret chamber known but to a handful of holy men, and spoke to him, saying: Address the people of the United States and say to them, truly you are among the world’s great tribes, but you are threatened by Enemies both without and within.

And Putin spoke to God, saying: Lord, will they listen to one such as myself?

And the Lord replied: They will indeed. For you shall conduct a vast disinformation campaign with my help…


They lied to us (Fortepan via Wikimedia Commons)

Sister Miriam’s habit was a discrete presence with enough mass to stir up a breeze when she passed. It made a sound that you could almost hear, but never quite. The tunic was ankle length and she liked to clasp her hands behind the scapular, even as she walked, which lent her the illusion of treading on air. Despite the layers of heavy fabric, she appeared comfortable in every season, as if the habit generated a microclimate. She was my twelfth-grade English teacher, and she gave me a priceless insight into thinking differently through writing.

She liked to say, “I…


One final caress (Orazio Reminaldi ca 1625, public domain)

The near-sacrifice of Isaac in Genesis 22 is one of the most enchanting stories in Western literature. A deceptively simple tale, it captivates children yet tests the wits of scholars, philosophers and theologians. Its author, whom we call the Elohist, or E, after his habit of referring to the God of Israel as Elohim (Lord), was a ninth-century B.C.E. literary artist whose works include such other delicacies as the story of Jacob and Esau and the story of Joseph.

Genesis 22 is art, yet its context is the Pentateuch and its origin a religious nation struggling to become. It is…


Great job, fellas (the White House, public domain)

The Trumpers have done it again; sensible people warned them, but they voted in defiance of all reason. Although they’ve watched Donald fail continually, and gracelessly — even tragically — they pulled that lever like lab monkeys dosing themselves with cocaine. Incredibly, Donald attracted eleven million more voters in 2020 than he did in 2016, for a popular-vote total of nearly 74 million versus 63 million four years ago.

Educated liberals like to say that his voters are stupid and mentally ill. That critique could not be more elitist or misguided. Our 74 million Trump voters are neither crazy nor…

Thomas Greene

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