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Written by Jim Jordal   
Friday, 03 June 2016

TRUMPED

by Jim Jordal

“…In order that the living may know that the Most High rules in the kingdom of men, gives it to whomever He will, and sets over it the lowest of men.”

The prophet Daniel’s interpretation of Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar’s dream

Some of you no doubt feel “Trumped” as the politically impossible has happened. Yes, Donald Trump did what the political flacks said was impossible in gaining the 1237 votes necessary to claim first ballot nomination for president at the July GOP convention in Cleveland. Now perhaps we can relax a bit and consider a few things that God has to say about His role in the affairs of men. We might then discover why seemingly impossible things still happen as we clueless victims pretend we have some control over what transpires in the Halls of Power of Washington and Wall Street.

Whatever your feelings toward the presidential candidates, it will help clarify your thinking and political choices if you consider a few salient points.

One: As the prophet Daniel noted in the Scripture above, God Almighty rules in the kingdoms of men and gives them to whomever He pleases---even the lowest of men (and women). The idea that we control the outcome of our political deliberations is wishful thinking at best and outright arrogance at the worst. God controls these outcomes and always has, except that we don’t listen. So we usually get exactly what we deserve, leaders who reflect the values of the age and the excesses of the human experience.

Two: There is little doubt that public restlessness and dissent are higher than at any time since the Viet Nam era. People are angry because the gains of the so-called recovery have eluded perhaps half our population. Almost 50% of people admit that they could not pay an immediate debt of $400. People are angry because they know that while their real wages and purchasing power have essentially stagnated, returns to the few at the top of the economic pecking order have never been higher.

Three: The jobs exported to the Third World are not coming back, and the sufferers know it. When candidates posture about bringing back these jobs, they promise a virtual impossibility because the world productive mechanisms have changed. Every new invention or innovation replaces workers, and even if they don’t, the new methods usually require workers of higher level skills and education. So the working and middle classes are narrowed a bit more as they piteously await jobs and benefits that may never arrive.

Four: Perhaps the biggest dissatisfaction comes from the growing realization that government cares little for the common people except as they can vote and pay more in taxes. It fights useless wars, aimed not at controlling political evil, but in reality at preserving the model of corporate dominance that returns profits to American tycoons at the expense of indigenous peoples and poorer countries. We spend more on national defense than the next 14 countries under us combined, including Russia and China. We can’t afford the repair our infrastructure, but we can spend trillions on needless militarism. Go figure!

As I said last week, crisis produces change. We appear headed toward the greatest political crisis in decades, perhaps even centuries. Before you attack any candidates consider that they are representations of the society and values we have accepted without struggle. As Isaiah said concerning the arrogance of the King of Assyria who had captured the people’s wealth, “My hand has found like a nest the riches of the people….and there was no one who moved his wing, nor opened his mouth or even peeped.”

We have largely failed to resist or even question the corrosions of righteousness and justice that beset us, so now we face the possible consequences of having to endure leaders who are not trusted or respected.