Catholic MAGA Fascists and the Attempted Coup

Deacon Steve Greydanus writes over on the Book of Face about this piece in The Atlantic chronicling Trump’s attempt to overthrow the election:

We now know that Trump’s hopes of having Mike Pence somehow throw out the election results on January 6 were given a six-step pseudo-legal rationalization in a two-page memo from a controversial Trump team lawyer named John Eastman.

Throwing out the election results were one of five lines of attack Trump tried in his bid to cling to power. What all five efforts shared was a dependency on Trump’s constant efforts, beginning even before the 2016 election, to undermine American confidence in the election process, and specifically, in 2020 and beyond, to persuade a critical mass of Americans that the 2020 election was stolen.

His more reasonable defenders said things like “He has the right to pursue all legal options,” but the efforts to blow smoke over the election results were never only about pursuing legal options. They were ultimately an attempt to create a justification for staying in power by any means necessary.

We already knew most of what this article outlines, but the more details emerge, the scarier the picture becomes.

The article doesn’t mention a sixth potential course of action that Trump definitely bandied about, but was never able to convince even his inner circle would fly: declaring martial law and suspending the constitutional process. (I believe that was his ultimate hope for the storming of the Capitol, if only things had gotten more out of hand than they did: not simply disrupting the official acceptance of the election results, but giving Trump a pretext for declaring martial law.)

Here’s the memo, which is a massive concatenation of the biggest lies you have ever seen, combined with Goebbels-level propaganda and contempt for democracy:

No description available.

The author of the memo detailing the preposterous rationale for Pence to smash democracy, John Eastman, is a real piece of work and a classic example of how the Greatest Catholics of All Time have really gone in for both fascism and white supremacy:

In addition to trying to brazenly steal the election (including speaking at the Insurrection Rally and helping to gin up the riot), he also wheeled out the exhausted Birther lie against another brown candidate when wrote an op-ed claiming that Kamala Harris was not an American citizen and thus not legally eligible for the position.

He also fought hard to deport brown people when Obama stopped it by executive order.

And, in the best Goebbels fashion, after he helped incite the Insurrection, he lied through his teeth that “a paramilitary group as well as antifa groups” were actually to blame for the riot that was 100% the fault of MAGA and instigated by Trump and lackeys like himself.

You will be utterly unsurprised to learn that this brazen liar and enemy of the United States used to be the head of the National Organization for Marriage and is, like so many of these people a major figure in the “prolife” movement.

More on this proclivity for fascism among MAGA Christian tomorrow.


17 Responses

  1. Apparently this coup hinged completely on whether Pence would follow through with it.

    Come to think of it, if anybody wrote this list in the past, a lot of people would agree that this is something that Pence could do and definitely would do if there was no way for Trump to get reelected legally.

    Yet he didn’t, and I wonder whether this speaks of his basic decency and sanity or whether this is actually his character.

    I wonder if he would align himself with the Lincoln movement within the Republican party and make a good president, or if he’s still the wolf in sheep’s clothing that a lot of people think he is.

  2. None of this is even remotely a surprise about Eastman— or indeed, anyone connected with him. Power, money, and do,inion have always been his goal. And in the age of Former, revenge.

    This right to life man supported the antigay laws in Uganda, laws which could have included the death penalty. They’re just f*gs, ya know, receiving the due penalty for their error.

    None of this is new. I won’t use this opportunity to re-open the discussion about Pope Pius. You can just google “vatican helps nazis” for a wealth pf articles on the subject from respected organizations. We’re watching “jaguar” right now on netflix. No one is pussyfooting about it there.

    The report on sexual abuse by French clergy came oit last week— approximately 100 victims for every single priestly perpetrator. THAT WE KNOW OF. If I know anything about the child abuse problem — and I do – the number of victims and the number of perpetrators is probably quite a bit higher. France’s top bishop, Eric de Moulins-Beaufort, had initially expressed “shame and horror” at the report, but in an interview a few days later he sparked outrage by rejecting the commission’s recommendation to require priests to inform police of any child abuse cases learned about during the sacrament of confession. As far as he is concerned, the religious “rights” of the confessional supersede the laws of France, or the lives of the victims. So much for “obey the civil authorities”. So much for the kids. Something about millstones comes to mind, but that’s just the gay atheist talking. And there is only self service at the Morality Cafeteria.

    The Catholic Bishop to the armed forces of the US, the wonderously named Broglio— hello, Im broglio— has declared that some mythical “conscience right” for soldiers means that they don’t have to take the vaccine. Quite apart from not letting anyone else’s “right of conscience” have an airing if it contradicts Catholic power mongering teaching, quite apart from supporting insubordination, which should get him canned from his position, he is clearly declaring that his “sincere religious belief“ about right to life is nothing compared to his “sincere religious belief” about this. As Mark always said, “right to life” is simply the shield to enable all of the OTHER sociopathic behavior- including this anti-vax and Muh Freedumb nonsense.

    I could go on, but I’ll just get yelled at by Mark. Eastman ran for Attorney General in California a few years ago, if I recall, against our current vice president. He didn’t have a snowballs chance in hell, but I doubt that he actually cared about winning. There were other goals in mind.

    I will just leave it at this: the church has some very serious cleanup and needs to do, and as long as it refuses to do it, people like Eastman will continue to harm it, make money from it, undermine it, accrue power at its expense, and harm innocent people.

    1. Hey Ben.
      do you think people are getting better or worse? I had an argument years ago with my oldest about this. He changed my mind. Also, my son, Max(in Oakland) 🙂 was out on a date when the subject came up. The girl was so incensed (that Max stated that humanity is getting better),
      –she stormed off. I told him “good riddance” and that as a 30-year-old the 24-year-old girls might not be the best choice.

      I think Mark’s point about the lions gathering at the watering hole is pretty spot on. While some of us were busy Catholic-ing at the Catholic watering hole, the predators were gathering with sheep suits on, waiting for the gazelles to show up.

      There will always be old prudes that will blame *anyone* if they bring up sex in any capacity. They are dying off though. I think I told you what happened when a gay kid assaulted my 7th grader six years ago. The gay kid invited my kid over a bunch of times and then showed him gay porn. He did it to another kid too. My kid told me everything, but the other two kids decided to beat him up for being a snitch (and emptied a garbage can on his head). My kid got one magnificent punch in. About a week later my sister who delights in gossip wouldn’t let it drop until I told her what happened. We went back and forth whispering like ninnies at the dinner table. My mother became incensed and insisted on knowing what we were talking about. I knew how it would go over with her so I kept saying “nevermind” but she wouldn’t take no for an answer. I was so annoyed at her at the end. I said, “FINE. Lucas got beaten up by a gay kid, AND the first grade teacher’s son, for telling me he’d shown them gay porn.”

      Guess how my Mom reacted?

      “How DARE you say such FILTHY things at my dinner table???!!!!”

      Hear no evil speak no evil see no evil…unless it’s the evil *I* choose to see,

      So, so predictable.

      Also, due to all of the Catholics that revel in gossip, I will add that I’d never go to confession again if the priest was allowed to talk about what I’d said to other people behind my back. Never.

      If a creep is actually self aware enough that he goes to a confessional begging for forgiveness for his sin, I’d consider that a step in the right direction compared to the crazy MAGA narcissists that think they are pro-life. (No, confession doesn’t mean he doesn’t have to pay for his crime!)

      “I have nothing to apologize for”
      –Donald Trump

      1. I think human nature is more or less constant. I wouldn’t be incensed if a lady at dinner had another opinion though. In fact, I haven’t got the slightest idea what made this girl so angry. Was your son dating a died-the-wool TULIP Calvinist? :p

      2. I’m sorry I didn’t get to this yesterday, but it’s been very busy for the last few weeks. I don’t know where I found the time to do all the stuff before I retired.

        Do I think people are getting better or worse? Not really a question that anybody can answer, but the best I can say is I think that the better people are getting better, and the worse people are getting worse. I pretty much blame the Internet for that. I look at the anti-VAXxers, the flat Earthers, the covid deniers, the right to lifers that are really a homicidal cult, The powermongering Republicans intent on destroying our democracy in support of the rich getting ever richer, and all of the things that mark would get very upset with me for bringing up, and i think the worse people are getting ever more worse.

        The kid that tried to get your son involved sounds like either a predator in the making, or a kid who has not learned yet how to behave himself. Porn is as easy to get as parking your kid in front of a TV is easier than raising him, talking to him, supervising him. I’m sorry that happened to your son, every bit as I would be sorry if it happened to your daughter. I hope he is simply immature.

        Regarding the seal of the confessional, I understand why that would upset you if it were violated. But we’re not talking about gossip here. We’re talking about something that has potential lifetime consequences for the victims. I’ve suggested several times that when it comes to things like this, no priest should grant absolution with a few hail Mary’s. To me, the moral position is to require the confessed assaulter to turn himself into the police, and only when that is done, is absolution granted. I would say the same thing is true of a murderer or a rapist.

        Two days ago, Das Husband told me once again that he was going to give up beer. He said, as he always does, when he makes that promises: “don’t laugh“. I did not laugh, but I also knew that this promise was worthless. He then decided to have a beer, saying he would start having no beer yesterday, his last day off. You’ll never guess what he did: he had a couple of beers, and said that it would start today. He also said “don’t laugh“. I’ve heard this 1 million times before. I don’t take it seriously. What I have told him was “have a beer – a single beer.“ I don’t really care that he’s drinking the beer, I care about his in ability to follow through with it.

        What does this have to do with the hypothetical priest and a hypothetical child molester? Child molesters are almost always men, almost always serial offenders, and Unless they have a strong moral fiber, always a danger to kids. A priest telling a confessed child molester “go and sin no more“ is really just saying, “ I don’t know anything. I have no qualifications to do what I’m doing. Go and sin some more.” The confessed child molester is like Das Husband and his beer.

      3. @ Artevelde
        I’ll admit it, I like the idea that humans are getting better. My oldest studied history and threw all kinds of proof at me that he is right. He must have had the same conversation with his brother. I of course don’t remember all of his facts and figures about the heinous things we were comfortable with in the past and are no longer comfortable with.

        What I realized is that people on the political right enjoy scaremongering to get people to do their bidding. Mark’s current blog post is a perfect example of this. You can get nice people to do things to violate their consciences if they think it will avert catastrophe. This idea that hell is arriving at our doorstep soon, and is just around the corner –clouds our vision with pessimism and self fulfilling prophecy…

      4. @Ben,
        No worries. I’m back at work with more hours now. I guess I’m not happy if I’m not juggling! So much is happening right now that I find Mark’s blog a good opportunity to unplug from the rest of it. I have also learned a lot here.

        Anyway,–regarding the beer–we all have our issues, eh? I love (expensive) white wine. Every Lent my husband gives it up and I drink RED as penance (don’t laugh) :). The temptation to overindulge with red is almost nil whereas a good bottle of white on the weekend…I never understood that temptation until my late 30’s, and busily judged people about it. Having a sober son really opened my eyes though. It has been such a terrible struggle for him. I talked about it with my very proper cousin last year who lost her daughter to an overdose. Addiction is a monstrous thing, and I don’t think the same as being a person tempted to overindulge.

        I understand your qualms about an addict going to confession. I do. Yes, it could even contribute to the cycle of abuse for a stunted personality, I can see that…but to withdraw it as a source of accountability and in the effort to “know thyself” would be a mistake. As a Catholic, I believe there is also a spiritual component to it. If priests don’t direct criminals to turn themselves in they are part of the problem. –But I can’t imagine a world where the priest becomes informant. It makes no sense. The penitent will end up rambling around in his/her own head with nobody to guide them. Destroying the seal of confession would just keep criminals further from grace.

      5. @taco

        The fact that I believe human nature is unchanging, doesn’t mean that I’m a closet Calvinist, but it does make me a bit of a conservative when it comes to progessive social engineering 🙂

    2. Your endless jeremiads against the Church would be more believable if you were capable of ever acknowledging anything good about the Faith at all. When the only thing you can ever do is attack the Church, emphasizing only the isolated voice of a Broglio while flatly ignoring the clear (and dominant) voice of Pope Francis who flatly denies that there can even *be* a sane argument from conscience for refusing to be vaxed (apart from something like a medical exemption based on allergy, etc), you make clear that your prejudices blind you.

      1. Mark, I tend to think that you really don’t read what I have to say, you just hear what you think I said.

        The subject of your article was Eastman, and the evil— I think I will use a word I don’t use all that often— of what he is doing and attempting to do to our country. I am well aware of Eastman, who he is and what he does. i thought I would just round out the picture a bit. There just happened to be two more of them who fall into the same MAGAtous column this week. I could have addedd several more.

        I did not attack the faith, NOT IN ONE WORD I SAID. I wasn’t referring to the Church when I referred to power mongering, but Eastman. and substituting teaching for it was a reference to Pope Francis’s comments and Broglio’s disregard of them. I could perhaps have been a bit clearer there, and I apologize for it,

        I did not attack the faith. I will leave that to the likes of Broglio, Moulins-Beaufort, and Eastman and their enablers. And if you wish, Pius, because YOU brought him up recently, and I Just watched a program on that very subject. The controversy around Pius— and I think the matter is far from settled— doesn’t help, either.

        I was quite clear I was talking about three three different men, AND WHAT THEY HAVE DONE TO DAMAGE YOUR FAITH. And harm innocent others.and I was channeling you, as you have pointed out that the “unborn” are the MAGAtous shield for all of the harm they do, like the three I mentioned.

        In point of fact, I agree with you. i even said so at the end. The church has a lot of cleaning up to do. Eastman is contributing to the dirt they need to clean up, because he is a very prominent, conservative Catholic, and advertises himself as such.. i was quite clear there even if I was not quite clear earlier.

        That isn’t an attack unless you want to see it that way. But it is the truth. And that is my point and your point. So howzabout we agree?

  3. p.s. George Floyd tried to sell a cigarette illegally.

    Why the heck isn’t Trump sitting in a jail cell for causing five people to *die* at his micky mouse insurrection (and stealing from poor people every time he went bankrupt, and refused to pay his fair share?)

    1. Not that it refutes or minimizes your point, but I think it was Eric Garner who was killed by the NYPD who were trying to arrest him for selling illegal cigarettes. I think George Floyd was killed by MPD while being arrested on suspicion of passing a counterfeit $20 bill.

      1. Thank you. I’m not 100% certain if it was five that died at the trump insurrection either. Sometimes I weigh fact checking with how upsetting the fact checking will affect my day. It’s very cowardly. Even realistic fiction affects me too much.

  4. The American Conservative is now more or less openly advocating for fascism, street terrorism and civil war on a daily basis. They’re all worded along the lines of “I’m not advocating civil war, wink wink, but when those liberals force us to do it any day now, our atrocities will totally be their fault.” Pro-lifers, one and all.

    1. Yes. Rod Dreher is openly in favour of a Franco-style coup these days. The liberals under the bed are so monstrous that they justify any kind of reaction.

      But no worries, he hates Western Europeans as much, if not more, than the libs.

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