Hard to imagine that someone could be so unthinkable, unfit, unqualified and unworthy – not to mention odious, oily and a purveyor of supernatural beliefs – that you are relieved to hear that the absurdity that is Donald Trump has beaten him to the Republican nomination.
It has to be said that Trump showed magnanimity, maturity, moderation, gentlemanliness and mercy in finishing Ted Cruz off with an accusation that Cruz Senior was buddies with Lee Harvey Oswald. He is too kind: Rafael Cruz is unimaginably creepier than that.
In keeping with the apocalyptic mood of this moment, I find a mysterious glossy leaflet in my mail box. Featuring one of those joyous-figure-on-mountaintop-against-sunset photos, it is an invitation to a ‘Nothing is Impossible event’ in Cheung Sha Wan in a week or so…
It is from something called the UCKG Help Centre. It offers solutions to a range of health and financial nightmares. Some are not hugely relevant to a safe and prosperous community like ours, such as ‘family members in prison’ or ‘unemployment’. Others seem to be almost tailor-made to appeal to Hong Kong angst, from the metaphysical ‘a sense of being cursed’ to the ever-present ‘skin problems’…
It gives some mightily impressive case studies, including a young lady cured of multiple sclerosis, and a kid whose twisted intestines suddenly fixed themselves…
One brief reference to God appears (a woman whose unborn child’s Downs Syndrome vanished before birth). But this seems to be an oversight: the compilers of the pamphlet cunningly try not to put off our secular local audience.
Obviously, it is some sort of church. If it were a non-religious multi-level-marketing scam thing, it would push only promises of financial abundance; instead, it tempts the insecure with escape from all ailments. Presumably some sort of ‘charismatic’ sect stressing worldly wealth here and now, rather than all that airy-fairy eternal-riches-in-Heaven stuff.
So to Google… It transpires that this is the Universal Church of the Kingdom of God, a Pentecostal empire founded in Brazil, and spreading everywhere, especially Africa. It was implicated in an infamous ritual abuse/exorcism/killing of a little Ivorian child in the UK. A South African academic notes that…
…the UCKG insists that relationships with God be devoid of ’emotions’, that socialisation between members be kept to a minimum and that charity and fellowship are ‘useless’ in materialising God’s blessings. Instead, the UCKG urges members to sacrifice large sums of money to God for delivering wealth, health, social harmony and happiness.
What brings these people to Hong Kong? Can’t be the social harmony. Wikipedia mentions the church’s supposed ‘witchcraft’ and ‘intolerance to other religions’, which aren’t really big deals here. But it then adds ‘charlatanism’ and ‘money laundering’. Maybe they’ll feel right at home here, after all.
If that’s not deranged enough for you, and even Rafael Cruz’s preaching doesn’t freak you out enough, there’s always this otherworldly bizarreness to go to.
Fell for it!
Can’t stop laughing!
Stop it, America. Really, you’re ruining democracy for the rest of us. How are we supposed to defend democratic values against self-serving autocrats and obsequious tycoons when you go around voting for bigoted shoe-turds like Trump and Cruz? Are you trying to give the China Daily gloating rights? Get your shit together, America.
Trump for President? No chance. Hillary is a shoe-in now. But think of Leicester City… Who’d have thought? It’s a funny old game. Will the boy do good? Will Trump be sick as a parrot? Certainly, it’s a game of two halves, and we have to take a wait-and-see approach.
Back to the studio.
I am often tempted to put out a sign. I am a doctor after all.
Laying on of hands ( ladies only 18-23)
Instant Oxford Entry
Alas, I am too honest for this world.
A few years ago, someone said to me: ” If you’re so intelligent, why aren’t you rich?” There’s no answer to that one.
If the U.S. is to put the brakes on its accelerating decline, Mr. Trump may be just the man to do it. The last thing the U.S. needs is another empty-suit politician like Bill Clinton, GW Bush, Barack Obama or Mrs. Clinton to manage the decline of the West. Remarkably, the Republican electorate has figured that out long before the New York Times or the Wall Street Journal.
The snivelling condescension rained down upon Mr. Trump (for example, he is routinely described as a “reality TV star” rather than the successful businessman that he is) is a carbon copy of what Ronald Reagan endured before his policies helped make the American economy boom and before he liberated hundreds of millions of people by leading the West to victory in the Cold War without a shot being fired. But let’s not let the facts get in the way.
Besides that, Mr. Trump is going to be very entertaining.
Trump inherited his wealth, and as I believe has been said in this forum previously, if he had invested it all in blue chip stocks at the time he would be a far richer man today then he currently is.
However, to vote him as president whilst being amusing, and taking the point above, be better than the usual grey suits, will effectively give any opponent of democracy all of the ammunition they will ever need.
Agree that we don’t want another career politician in the pay of the lobbyists – so Bernie Sanders it is then.
Bill Clinton balanced the budget, raised the minimum wage and didn’t start any wars. He also got a blowjob without having sex with that woman.
Hillary it is. And after the landslide we can all have a chuckle about that Trump buffoon.
Mr. Trump got a $1 million loan from his father in 1971 to launch his own business career. He paid the money back.
Mr. Trump inherited $100 million when his father died in 1999, long after Mr. Trump had achieved his initial business success and would have had a net worth far in excess of $100 million at the time.
But let’s not let the facts get in the way.
Person X: If you’re so intelligent, then why aren’t you rich?
Wen J.B., Xi J.P., Jiang Z.M. Deng X.P., Jia Q.L., etc etc etc: We ARE rich!!!! Filthy, steenkin’, wallowing-in-it RICH!!!!
PCC – US$1,000,000 is not wealth? Did he pay it back with interest? I believe in the late 70’s-early 80’s when Trump was getting started, interest rates in the US were 15-18% per annum.
Regardless, no matter how you got it, having a million dollar head start at the beginning of your career is a big advantage that most of us unwashed peasants can only dream of. I am guessing you had a similar such arrangement when you were making your own mark on the world.
Trump is a charlatan who takes out loans/recruits investors, absconds with the money, and then sues them for having the temerity to ask for their money back. He’d fit right in with China’s kleptocratic elite. Plus the man managed to bankrupt a casino, twice.
Sorry Cassowary…he’s no Madoff.
If you base it on who Bill Clinton would choose, you have to go with Bernie Sanders or Trump — the Bill Clinton who balanced the budget etc was very much an “anyone but Hillary” guy.
@PCC — the Trump millions waters are a murkier than you suggest: He joined his dad’s company Elizabeth Trump & Son and got made head in 1971 — with a $1 million loan and renamed it, to be exact: not quite what I’d frame as launching your own business career: more sort of being given one of your dad’s businesses — à la Richard Li.
As to the inheritance, he’d gone bankrupt twice by ’91, so again not really the business success he likes to paint, and as much of his net worth is by his own admission “based on his feelings” and he recently estimated his name as contributing US$3 billion to his net worth, his net worth estimates are fairly dodgy at best.
Trump rates a grade above the eminently punchable Martin Shkreli. He once borrowed 640 million dollars from Deutsche Bank. To avoid paying it back, he first claimed that the real estate market crash was an Act of God akin to an earthquake that freed him of his debt obligations, and then sued them for 3 billion for damage to his reputation. The bank eventually ate the loss to avoid having to deal with him further.
Trump has left a string of failed business ventures behind him: The airline, the magazine, the mortgage lender, the implausible line of steaks sold exclusively at an electronics boutique. Insofar as he makes money these days, it’s off self-promotion and licensing deals. He is a successful professional blowhard, which is evidently enough to make a third of Americans think he is qualified to lead the world’s only superpower.
Re: Cruz Senior’s comments on atheists being perverts and child molesters.
The “no god = no absolute rules = you can do what you want = have sex with children/your family/animals” line of thinking shows something pretty disturbing about the people who make that claim.
Clearly Cruz Sr thinks that (perhaps like him) everyone deep down wants to be a pervert and molester, but it’s only external rules and fear of punishment (whether worldly or heavenly) that keep young children and household pets safe.
You often see this sort of pent up perversion demonstrated among religious zealots who have a millennial bent. Some charismatic leader declares a “new dispensation” or some other excuse for waiving the old rules and suddenly the congregation is all orgies, incest and occasional donkey fucking. This indicates is that this is the sort of thing that these pent up zealots *wanted* to do, but their belief in God’s prohibitions stopped them living on their desires.
A historical example that comes to mind is when the Ismaili assassin sect in Iran went through a millennial period. Likely there are others, but it’s too dangerous to Google “religious sect + “millennarians + orgies” at work for examples.
A non-sectarian analogue would be the trope of “It’s the end of the world tomorrow, so let’s have rampant sex with strangers today”. Except that trope is more polite and less threatening to children and animals.
I’m comfortable enough to say that, if all the rules were off and there were no repercussions for transgressing the old rules, I still wouldn’t be interested in sex with everything and anything. Hell, I’ve been in plenty of karaoke dungeons in mainland China for business and not felt a need to engage in consequence-free “sin”, even though it would probably be better for client relationships if I did.
Clearly I don’t have the same base desires and lust to plug any and all holes that Cruz Sr must have lurking behind the barbed wire fence of his religious belief.
@Docta G: “A few years ago, someone said to me: ‘ If you’re so intelligent, why aren’t you rich?’ There’s no answer to that one.”
Oh but there is: because you’re a talentless self-absorbed non-entity.
@Trump agonistes – There seems to be a lot of jealous nitpicking in these precincts. If it’s so easy to become a billionaire or a political leader or a Nobel prize winner, why haven’t we all done so? Oppose the man if you like, but give him credit for what he’s accomplished. He has spent his life in the arena, has the cuts and bruises to prove it, and he’s still standing, still fighting. I respect that.