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Sun Jan 8, 2017, 02:44 PM

Beware of Mike Pence's Dominionism

I know that many on DU are hoping that Trump may impeached or perhaps Section 4 of the 25th Amendment may be invoked:

Section 4. Whenever the Vice President and a majority of either the principal officers of the executive departments or of such other body as Congress may by law provide, transmit to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives their written declaration that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, the Vice President shall immediately assume the powers and duties of the office as Acting President.

Thereafter, when the President transmits to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives his written declaration that no inability exists, he shall resume the powers and duties of his office unless the Vice President and a majority of either the principal officers of the executive department or of such other body as Congress may by law provide, transmit within four days to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives their written declaration that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office. Thereupon Congress shall decide the issue, assembling within forty-eight hours for that purpose if not in session. If the Congress, within twenty-one days after receipt of the latter written declaration, or, if Congress is not in session, within twenty-one days after Congress is required to assemble, determines by two-thirds vote of both Houses that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, the Vice President shall continue to discharge the same as Acting President; otherwise, the President shall resume the powers and duties of his office.


Section 4 [link:https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twenty-fifth_Amendment_to_the_United_States_Constitution#1987:_Reagan.27s_alleged_incapacity|]was almost invoked late in Reagan's last term when it became apparent that Ronnie was losing it. If either route is taken to remove Trump from office, we still aren't out of the woods; we still have to deal with Mike Pence.

Pence has been labeled a Dominionist. Dominionism may be defined as:

Dominionism is the theocratic idea that regardless of theological camp, means, or timetable, God has called conservative Christians to exercise dominion over society by taking control of political and cultural institutions. The term describes a broad tendency across a wide swath of American Christianity. People who embrace this idea are referred to as dominionists. Although Chip Berlet, then of Political Research Associates, and I defined and popularized the term for many in the 1990s, in fact it had (along with the term dominion theology) been in use by both evangelical proponents and critics for many years.


Prominent dominionists in the Republican party include Rick Perry, Michelle Bachman, Ted Cruz, and Mike Pence.

Pence has been labeled a dominionist numerous times; a Google search on "Mike Pence dominionist" will turn up numerous articles, including this one by Jeremy Scahill: Mike Pence Will Be the Most Powerful Christian Supremacist in US History:

THE ELECTION OF Donald Trump has sent shockwaves through the souls of compassionate, humane people across the country and the world. Horror that a candidate who ran on a platform of open bigotry, threats against immigrants and Muslims, and blatant misogyny will soon be president is now sinking in. Trump appointed a white nationalist, Steve Bannon, as chief White House strategist — which was promptly celebrated by the American Nazi Party and the Ku Klux Klan. Bannon and other possible extremist Trump appointees, such as John Bolton, a neocon who believes the U.S. should “bomb Iran,” and the authoritarian Rudy Giuliani, are now receiving much deserved public scrutiny.

The incoming vice president, Mike Pence, has not elicited the same reaction, instead often painted as the reasonable adult on the ticket, a “counterbalance” to Trump and a “bridge to the establishment.” However, there is every reason to regard him as, if anything, even more terrifying than the president-elect.

Pence’s ascent to the second most powerful position in the U.S. government is a tremendous coup for the radical religious right. Pence — and his fellow Christian supremacist militants — would not have been able to win the White House on their own. For them, Donald Trump was a godsend. “This may not be our preferred candidate, but that doesn’t mean it may not be God’s candidate to do something that we don’t see,” said David Barton, a prominent Christian-right activist and president of Wall Builders, an organization dedicated to making the U.S. government enforce “biblical values.” In June, Barton prophesied: “We may look back in a few years and say, ‘Wow, [Trump] really did some things that none of us expected.’”

Trump is a Trojan horse for a cabal of vicious zealots who have long craved an extremist Christian theocracy, and Pence is one of its most prized warriors. With Republican control of the House and Senate and the prospect of dramatically and decisively tilting the balance of the Supreme Court to the far right, the incoming administration will have a real shot at bringing the fire and brimstone of the second coming to Washington.

“The enemy, to them, is secularism. They want a God-led government. That’s the only legitimate government,” contends Jeff Sharlet, author of two books on the radical religious right, including “The Family: The Secret Fundamentalism at the Heart of American Power.” “So when they speak of business, they’re speaking not of something separate from God, but they’re speaking of what, in Mike Pence’s circles, would be called biblical capitalism, the idea that this economic system is God-ordained.”

Yeah, I know, Trump is a Trojan Horse for the Russians; but, he's also a Trojan Horse for the religious right! Even if Trump isn't removed from office, Pence is likely to be "the power behind the throne," like Dick Cheney. Trump's son, Don Jr., has said that Pence will be in charge of "domestic and foreign policy," while Trump would focus on the vague mission of “Making America Great Again.”"

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Response to LongTomH (Original post)

Sun Jan 8, 2017, 02:46 PM

1. Pence might be slightly less likely to start WWIII.

Otherwise he's no improvement.

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Response to The Velveteen Ocelot (Reply #1)

Sun Jan 8, 2017, 02:51 PM

4. yep, I think we could eventually undo the damage done by Pence...

but with agent orange, we could all be dead...

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Response to dhill926 (Reply #4)

Mon Jan 9, 2017, 03:38 AM

12. Pence is extremely conservative but is not an existential threat to the republic.

Pence has bad policies, but policies can be reversed so long as the constitution remains in effect.

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Response to The Velveteen Ocelot (Reply #1)

Sun Jan 8, 2017, 02:55 PM

5. Pence has a commitment to 'America-First' militarism!

That could get us into a shooting war!!!!

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Response to The Velveteen Ocelot (Reply #1)

Sun Jan 8, 2017, 04:59 PM

7. Depends on how much he wanst Armageddon and Jesus to return

they all want the End Times ASAP

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Response to HAB911 (Reply #7)

Sun Jan 8, 2017, 05:21 PM

11. Seems more like they want the persecution of Christians to happen.

If they keep it up, they will get it.

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Response to roamer65 (Reply #11)

Mon Jan 9, 2017, 08:47 AM

16. They already feel persecuted so

the trip will be a short one

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Response to The Velveteen Ocelot (Reply #1)

Mon Jan 9, 2017, 04:47 AM

14. I think we'd be better off with him. He's no Svengali.

People would line up for and against him, and there's be more against. He wouldn't have the same ability to throw toxic fairy dust that DT has.

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Response to LongTomH (Original post)

Sun Jan 8, 2017, 02:49 PM

2. So, in other words, Pennywise is just going to be a figure head.

Why doesn't the thought of that make me feel better?

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Response to LongTomH (Original post)

Sun Jan 8, 2017, 02:51 PM

3. I'm very aware of his uber-religious leanings...

which yes, makes the whole Trump situation even worse. Although frankly, I agree much like with Dubya and Cheney Pence will be a corrosive force "behind the throne" that will work to do much evil with the cooperation of the RW Congress.

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Response to LongTomH (Original post)

Sun Jan 8, 2017, 04:39 PM

6. I'd wondered who redefined the term.

And then assumed that their redefinition was the one that had been in use (a) for a couple of decades earlier and (b) by all other groups.

Dominionists believe that God gave man dominion over the Earth. Therefore man should use the Earth; it's not a "we must respect nature and Gaia" creed by any means. But dominionism was strongly coupled with the idea of stewardship, which is that positions of authority are positions of service. If man has dominion over the Earth, then it's as a steward, and each generation has a responsibility to use the resources well and make sure that the next generation has at least as good an Earth. Adam was to tend the garden, not put in a parking lot. Some sub-components had as a caveat that eventually we'd get a new Earth, so non-use of depletable resources wasn't necessary.

At least in the '90s the term "dominionism" was also strongly coupled with "reconstructionism." Reconstructionism called on Xians to reconstruct society along theocratically-defined lines, but explicit in the discussion was that society would become a theocracy when it had been reconstructed. For that to happen the population must turn to God and the theocracy is then installed by popular will, not a coup, and not even just a mere majority. It's a sharply post-millennialist verson of Xianity in which the Christ returns after Xians have reconstructed society and established the "kingdom of God" so that Jesus returns to a righteous nation.

This differs from this guy's redefinition of "dominionism" in some pretty crucial ways. Mostly he took the word "dominion", a big scary word, and decided that it had to mean dominion over others. We're fast to redefine, mostly because it means we don't have to understand.

When using the second definition, it's important to make sure that everybody's on the same page. Otherwise you get the same kind of boneheaded discussions we had with Russians in the '90s: "liberal" meant "free market and laissez-faire economy with a small government"; "liberal" meant "veering towards a command-and-control economy with a large government." American liberals were in many ways Russian conservatives, while American conservatives were in many ways Russian liberals. ("Many ways," not "all ways." Finally some people decided they had to actually listen and pay attention to what others meant by the words they used. Took years for that to happen. A lot still aren't clear on the concept, 20 years later.

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Response to Igel (Reply #6)

Sun Jan 8, 2017, 05:01 PM

8. Dominionists believe that God gave man dominion over the Earth

is why they deny climate science, God will provide regardless

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Response to Igel (Reply #6)

Mon Jan 9, 2017, 04:31 AM

13. This is what I found doing a search of "dominionism definition"

The term “Dominionism” was first popularized in the 1990s by researchers, including Chip Berlet, scholar Sara Diamond, and myself, who needed a term to describe the political aspirations of Christian Rightists who believed that they have a biblical mandate to control all earthly institutions –including government – until the second coming of Jesus. But the idea of conservative Christians gaining political power sufficient to take dominion over society predated our use of the term by decades.
http://www.politicalresearch.org/2016/02/14/dominionism-is-the-new-religious-freedom/#sthash.CMiS23Rw.dpbs


I've never seen your definition applied to the term. It certainly doesn't appear to be "one guy's redefinition".

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Response to LongTomH (Original post)

Sun Jan 8, 2017, 05:02 PM

9. It is imperative we regain at least the Senate in 2018.

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Response to roamer65 (Reply #9)

Mon Jan 9, 2017, 04:48 AM

15. And that will be very hard because we have more vulnerable seats. n/t

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Response to LongTomH (Original post)

Sun Jan 8, 2017, 05:14 PM

10. Former Sen Dan Coats R-Indiana, Trump's nominee for DNI,

is a member of "The Family."

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Response to LongTomH (Original post)

Mon Jan 9, 2017, 11:10 AM

17. Robert Ahmanson and the Urosevich brothers

Poke around Google and you will find stuff about the Urosevich brothers who both serve on the boards of the largest voting machine manufacturers. Dominionism comes up in that context as well. Coincidence? I think not.

Here are a couple links - I don't have time to do more research just now.

http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.php?az=view_all&address=203x311105
http://voluntarysociety.org/action/vote/index.html

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