Borders and Babies vs. the Priests of Activism

President Trump made it pretty clear in his State of the Union speech, and the government funding bill that the president signed that is full of cunning poison pills to bollix up border control confirms it. The president will be running for reelection on Borders and Babies, and the Democrats will be running as the Priests of Activism.

Archbishop Patrick Leahy (D-VT) made it perfectly clear. From the pulpit of the Democrats’ weekly address he condemned “the toxic and hate-filled immigration policies of President Trump,” as any honest prelate would do when admonishing his flock to defy the Devil.

Look, I get it. How dare, how dare the orange-faced oaf and his hate-filled white supremacists start to think that they have a right to meddle with the wise policies and programs of their betters?

Only it is they, the Priests of Activism, that have got it wrong.

If you are President of a nation-state you have two jobs. One of them is to secure the borders so the citizens can wive and thrive in peace. The other is to preside over a national community that is into the project of baby-making, because without regular crops of babies your nation-state is not going to be long for this world.

But if you are Sandy the bartender, with a degree in international relations and economics, confirmed into the Church of Activism, you know that there is more to life than Borders and Babies. There are victims to be succored, planets to be saved, healthcare to be freed -- with you, as High Priestess, leading the peaceful protest on the via sacra to the Promised Land.

And every Second Coming needs its miracles -- in our day, its proofs of hate -- as in the Duke frat rape, the UVA broken-glass rape, the Kavanagh assault, the Smollett assault.

Roy Rappaport: “No society known to anthropology or history is devoid of what reasonable observers would agree is religion.”

But there is a problem. Some people think that they are above all that stuff: superstition, burning bushes, Billy Sunday and the sawdust trail. So they call their religion “social justice” or “ethics” or even “diversity and inclusion.” Sorry liberals: it is still religion.

Back in the good old days our liberal friends railed against those who would use the nation’s legislatures to “legislate morality.” What they meant, of course, was that they outraged at being subject to the legislation of other peoples’ morality. When it came to the legislation of “ethics” or the bending the curve of history towards left/liberal notions of justice, legislation should proceed with all deliberate speed. And if the legislation of liberal morality did not proceed fast enough, there were the courts.

Legislating preferred pronouns and criminalizing “hate,” liberals, is legislating morality, the morality of your secular religion.

Back in the old days, our Founders and men of similar mark decided that privileging one church as the official state church, and empowering high government officials to appoint bishops was a bad idea. So they amended the Constitution thusly: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”

But I’d say that 21st-century America does have an established religion, the secular religion of the liberal educated class.

In our day, the American Catholic Michael Novak wrote The Spirit of Democratic Capitalism. His argument was that we should keep separate the three great sectors of social power: the political sector, the economic sector, the moral/cultural sector, and we should prevent any two sectors from ganging up on the other sector. I call this system the Greater Separation of Powers. In other words, Novak reckoned that when the politicians and the priests ganged up on a businessman and called him a malefactor of great wealth, that was Not Good. Writing in 1982, Novak did not think to say that when SJW activists and owners of social media gang up to deplatform people they disagree with, that is Not Good.

The reason that the Founders put out that folderol about “no establishment of religion” was to stop one religion legislating morality for the rest of us, because people get really annoyed when forced to bow to someone else’s morality.

The reason that Michael Novak invented the Greater Separation of Powers is because people get really annoyed when a cabal, say of social media barons and SJW activists, combines to deny them freedom of speech.

But liberals, from AOC to the Democratic operatives with bylines in the media, know nothing about this. Why would they? They have gone to school with liberal teachers, got their university degrees from liberal professors, and probably never heard a word about how, e.g., socialism is really a secular religion.

I think it is our job to teach them in 2020, if not before.

Christopher Chantrill @chrischantrill runs the go-to site on US government finances, usgovernmentspending.com. Also get his American Manifesto and his Road to the Middle Class.

President Trump made it pretty clear in his State of the Union speech, and the government funding bill that the president signed that is full of cunning poison pills to bollix up border control confirms it. The president will be running for reelection on Borders and Babies, and the Democrats will be running as the Priests of Activism.

Archbishop Patrick Leahy (D-VT) made it perfectly clear. From the pulpit of the Democrats’ weekly address he condemned “the toxic and hate-filled immigration policies of President Trump,” as any honest prelate would do when admonishing his flock to defy the Devil.

Look, I get it. How dare, how dare the orange-faced oaf and his hate-filled white supremacists start to think that they have a right to meddle with the wise policies and programs of their betters?

Only it is they, the Priests of Activism, that have got it wrong.

If you are President of a nation-state you have two jobs. One of them is to secure the borders so the citizens can wive and thrive in peace. The other is to preside over a national community that is into the project of baby-making, because without regular crops of babies your nation-state is not going to be long for this world.

But if you are Sandy the bartender, with a degree in international relations and economics, confirmed into the Church of Activism, you know that there is more to life than Borders and Babies. There are victims to be succored, planets to be saved, healthcare to be freed -- with you, as High Priestess, leading the peaceful protest on the via sacra to the Promised Land.

And every Second Coming needs its miracles -- in our day, its proofs of hate -- as in the Duke frat rape, the UVA broken-glass rape, the Kavanagh assault, the Smollett assault.

Roy Rappaport: “No society known to anthropology or history is devoid of what reasonable observers would agree is religion.”

But there is a problem. Some people think that they are above all that stuff: superstition, burning bushes, Billy Sunday and the sawdust trail. So they call their religion “social justice” or “ethics” or even “diversity and inclusion.” Sorry liberals: it is still religion.

Back in the good old days our liberal friends railed against those who would use the nation’s legislatures to “legislate morality.” What they meant, of course, was that they outraged at being subject to the legislation of other peoples’ morality. When it came to the legislation of “ethics” or the bending the curve of history towards left/liberal notions of justice, legislation should proceed with all deliberate speed. And if the legislation of liberal morality did not proceed fast enough, there were the courts.

Legislating preferred pronouns and criminalizing “hate,” liberals, is legislating morality, the morality of your secular religion.

Back in the old days, our Founders and men of similar mark decided that privileging one church as the official state church, and empowering high government officials to appoint bishops was a bad idea. So they amended the Constitution thusly: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”

But I’d say that 21st-century America does have an established religion, the secular religion of the liberal educated class.

In our day, the American Catholic Michael Novak wrote The Spirit of Democratic Capitalism. His argument was that we should keep separate the three great sectors of social power: the political sector, the economic sector, the moral/cultural sector, and we should prevent any two sectors from ganging up on the other sector. I call this system the Greater Separation of Powers. In other words, Novak reckoned that when the politicians and the priests ganged up on a businessman and called him a malefactor of great wealth, that was Not Good. Writing in 1982, Novak did not think to say that when SJW activists and owners of social media gang up to deplatform people they disagree with, that is Not Good.

The reason that the Founders put out that folderol about “no establishment of religion” was to stop one religion legislating morality for the rest of us, because people get really annoyed when forced to bow to someone else’s morality.

The reason that Michael Novak invented the Greater Separation of Powers is because people get really annoyed when a cabal, say of social media barons and SJW activists, combines to deny them freedom of speech.

But liberals, from AOC to the Democratic operatives with bylines in the media, know nothing about this. Why would they? They have gone to school with liberal teachers, got their university degrees from liberal professors, and probably never heard a word about how, e.g., socialism is really a secular religion.

I think it is our job to teach them in 2020, if not before.

Christopher Chantrill @chrischantrill runs the go-to site on US government finances, usgovernmentspending.com. Also get his American Manifesto and his Road to the Middle Class.