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Thursday, October 27, 2016

WASHINGTON — There are few moments of grace in our politics these days, especially where conflicts over religion are concerned. Last week, I witnessed one. Perhaps it was a mere drop in an ocean of suspicion and mistrust, but it was instructive and even encouraging.

The venue, in a small meeting room at a Holiday Inn not far from the Capitol, was a gathering of members of the Secular Coalition for America whose mission is “to amplify the diverse and growing voice of the nontheistic community in the United States.” One cause of the contentiousness of our politics is that both secular and very religious Americans feel misunderstood and under assault.

Enter Sen. Chris Coons (D-DE).

The Secular Coalition invited Coons to speak because, as he said of himself last Thursday night, he is “dedicated to the separation of church and state and to the equal protection under the Constitution which I swore to uphold, whether you are religious or secular.”

More than that, Coons told the crowd that he is uneasy with “rigid certainty” on religious questions. He understands that many are skeptical of faith, both because “religion [has] come to be so closely associated with right-wing politics” and because the Bible “has been used as a document, as a foundation, to justify discrimination.” The revered text is, to some, “the basis of intolerance, based on outdated teachings and moral codes and has been a source of pain and distance and discomfort for many.”

If Coons had left it at that, this would have been another in a long series of Washington speeches in which a politician tells his allies how much he agrees with them. But as “a practicing Christian and a devout Presbyterian,” Coons had a second message.

Early on, he quoted the very Bible others find offensive, noting that Jesus’ command in Matthew 25 to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, and visit the imprisoned had “driven” him throughout his life. As a young man, he spent time in Kenya and South Africa working with the poor and with leaders of the South African Council of Churches, including Archbishop Desmond Tutu.

And then he told a story. As a Yale Law School student, he decided to pursue a separate degree from the university’s divinity school, and what he encountered was a long way from tolerance and open-mindedness.

“I was very active in the progressive community in my law school and most of my friends were politically active progressives,” he said. “But I was unprepared for their response when word started filtering out that I had enrolled in divinity school. Some of them literally disowned me; my own roommates moved out. Several folks literally stopped speaking to me, and acted as if I had lost my mind.”

His own background was thrown in his face, with friends saying: “Chris, you’re a scientist, you’re a chemist, you trained as a chemist as an undergraduate, how could you possibly believe this insane stuff?”

What he experienced, Coons said, was “real bigotry.”

“Frankly, we were a group of progressives who were really proud of how welcoming and open we were and how virtually any possible lifestyle or worldview or attitude was something we would embrace — right up until the moment when I said I believed in God.” For many progressives, “accepting someone of expressed faith was one of the hardest moments of tolerance and inclusion for them.”

Believers among you are probably cheering Coons at this point. But ever the peacemaker, he didn’t stop here. The other lesson he learned was that many nonbelievers “had personal experiences of deep pain and of alienation … that had driven a big wedge between them and religion.”

And he offered this: “When I think about this country’s founding, the central tenet of secular governance, I also think about the importance of doubt and of humility. As a person of faith, I think it’s foundational to our country that if we allow people to choose their path of faith, they must of course be also free, welcomed, celebrated, to choose not to have faith in a supreme being.”

It’s to the credit of the Secular Coalition crowd that they cheered a speech that was as challenging as it was affirming. Coons’ message was deceptively simple: that we must find ways of “getting past some of our misunderstandings of each other.” The problem: Respecting each other on matters of faith and politics seems beyond our current capacities.

E.J. Dionne’s email address is [email protected] Twitter: @EJDionne. 

Photo: Wyoming_Jackrabbit via Flickr

  • j.martindale

    I have devout family members, friends and employees. I never discuss the issue with them anymore. They are free to think whatever they wish. The only times religion ever becomes an issue that drives a wedge between me and religious people is when they either try to proselytize or try to impose their religion on me through political action. I have strong opinions regarding religion which I avoid imposing on them. I expect reciprocation. Unfortunately, most orthodox religions are founded on the principle of authoritarianism, which is the source of immeasurable discord in society.

    • drdroad

      Best post ever!

  • itsfun

    If you want to start a fight in a sports bar, just start talking religion and/or politics.

    • Sand_Cat

      Probably in any bar.
      Alcohol tends to bring out the worst in most people, which is why all those good Christians tried to ban it. That went well.

  • Great this Senator!

  • Dominick Vila

    I don’t have a problem with those who find spiritual comfort in religion, I have a problem with organized religious organization claiming victim-hood or divine beliefs to attack non believers or impose their views on the rights of others.

    • janis mcdonald

      Ditto here!!

    • mike

      Tell us about all the attacks by Christians being done these days, not in ancient times.
      How about all those who demand that people of faith in this Country go against their religion today.
      Don;t for ISIS!!

      • TimeMiddleClassRanThisShow

        yes, religions in the free world have been tamed. Looking at their history? History repeats itself.

      • Allan Richardson

        In the sixties, I heard an address at college by the Anglican Bishop Malcolm Boyd, author of the contemporary book on prayer “Are You Running With Me, Jesus?” in which one like stands out: quoted from memory, since I do not have a copy of the quote to read, was to praise the American First Amendment and its authors: “Thank God for the ATHEISTS who have prevented us CHRISTIANS from killing one another.”

        The point being that, if it were not for both civic and political leaders, some of them atheists and agnostics, other people of faith but not arrogance, writing and enforcing laws to keep all religions voluntary associations without political power, Christians probably WOULD be still killing other Christians and non-Christians.

        If you must pass laws to hurt other people in order to keep your faith, your faith is not truly faith.

        • mike

          Such hogwash!!! Still no cigar.

          • Sand_Cat

            Then you deny the mass slaughters carried out by Christians against other Christians, or against the unfortunate indigenous who had different religions? This was still going on in early American times, and large numbers of other abuses of liberty (I cringe at the word, which has been so abused by the Right as to become a near obscenity) based on religion, right through the present?
            Why, do you suppose, birth control used to be illegal, to give only one obvious example?

          • mike

            Now, Now, don’t try and put words in my mouth.
            i know you are a secular progressive and have little belief in anything other than big govt. and that is fine.
            You are much like Obama on ISIS, he refuses to use the word “Christians”, who are basically being beheaded, nor do you. Which is pathetic.

      • Sand_Cat

        What on EARTH are you talking about, and what has ISIS to do with it. Clearly, you just added them in to try to link them to those of us who believe YOUR religious freedom doesn’t give you the right to control OUR lives. “Attacks” on Christians? How laughable can you get?

        The main people attacking Christianity today are those who use a religion of forgiveness and reconciliation as a weapon to harm others, something we’d like to see them stop doing. If that’s an “attack,” it’s no wonder the GOP can’t wait to go to war with anyone, anywhere, on the slightest provocation.

        • mike

          You said: “The main people attacking Christianity today are those who use a
          religion of forgiveness and reconciliation as a weapon to harm others”. ISIS is a religion of forgiveness and reconciliation, Really!!!
          Tell me about all the attacks by Christians happening today. Who are they attacking?? Where are they doing all this damage?? Enlighten me, please.

  • Eleanore Whitaker

    Sorry but I don’t buy that “got religion” of these politicians. The human conscience being the overriding factor in right or wrong and the interpretation thereof, many who suddenly “get religion” do so to justify their less than honorable pasts. They rather enjoyed all of that carousing about and living high on the hog courtesy of the blood, sweat and tears of others…but when they have their first brush with mortality, suddenly running for the holy water is their major idea of repentance for their wayward pasts. But, having to learn the new traits of honesty, integrity and charity stings like hell. So, rather than suffer alone, these lunatic fringe wayward sons and daughters run for mass conversion. So did Jim Jones, Warren Jeffs, Tammy Faye and Jim Baker and Jimmy Swaggart.

    • mike

      More of your baloney!! He had religion way before he became a politician, it seems you can’t get anything right.
      You totally ignore the fact he was despised by the progressives when his thoughts didn’t fit their agenda. As it is today and on this site, if you don’t like what the other side says, the vindictiveness is all personal and emotional.
      You should start with Reid who lied deliberately on the floor of the Senate about Romney and not paying taxes without a shred of evidence but hearsay, knowing he is immune from legally be pursued. What was his answered when asked this year about his comments in 2012, “he lost didn’t he”.

      • Eleanore Whitaker

        Obviously, idiots like you can’t stand the truth. Reid never lied about anything. That’s just YOU YOU YOU trying desperately to save face for 8 Bush years you morons never saw coming or the Back Room GOP President Cheney who was in charge while the guy you stupids voted for swaggered and drawled as a front man.

        Romney’s Bain Capital is under investigation for tax evasion of several of their business “interests” in the Caymen Islands. But an asshat like you can’t EVER admit that. Keep feasting like a pig at the table of denial…Denial is why this guy got religion…Denial of his being a pig, a womanizer and/or boozer who just exchanged one vice (boozing) for another…”absolving himself via religion.” Sorry…I don’t buy that OR you BS.

        • mike

          No, he lied and the rest of the world knows he did, just you dishonest ideologues are in denial and can’t handle the truth.

          Romney’s Bain Capital, really?? He hasn’t had anything to do with Bain since 2002. Just more delusion on your part.
          You really are one messed up person, sad but true.

          • Eleanore Whitaker

            So just because you say he lied…well then…it must be a Biblical truth? Boy are you immature and childish. You can’t prove his lies in a court of law but you expect credibility? Yes…Bain Capital…really…they went bankrupt in their first 12 years of business and dumped over million in bankruptcy costs on taxpayers. That’s a matter of record I can prove to an asshat like you in a court of law if you need it.

            It’s long past time for a moron like you to get a life, get over your need to bitch and complain and hate hate hate anyone who disagrees with you.

            If no one else will tell you, I will. You are by far the most mentally damaged man I have the misfortune to come across…You lie and then deny. You are slammed in your stupid moron face with facts and then call others a liar. Since I am NOT the ONLY one you have pitched your bitches with, I am not surprised people ignore you.

          • mike

            It is the truth , which in your life truth is of little importance.
            Now there you go again with your ignorant remarks, Bain Capital never went bankrupt, it invested in companies that could have gone under. But, Bain Capital never when bankrupt. I know you can prove me wrong, Right??? You made ridiculous remarks about the Shah of Iran, which were proven wrong. Is this another one of your remarks being proved wrong again?
            As usual you are a typical dishonest ideologue and despicable.

            As to the rest of your post, more diarrhea of the brain.

          • Eleanore Whitaker

            Your paraonoia has gotten the better of you if you think you can impose your RULES on me, let alone on the rest of society Mr. Schizo. When it comes to truth, you only KNOW lies. Then, when you don’t like when you’ve been slapped down with truth, you deny or call the other person a liar to refocus on them and not you lies.

            So tell me…as a bona fide Daddy’s boy was it Daddy who taught you to rule with an iron hand of Grand Pubbah of Upper Butt Crack? or was Daddy the biggest pathological liar you had as a role model?

            Your posts are cow manure. You have yet to post on a single thread anywhere facts you can prove. So..get to it asshat…either admit you are a Daddy’s Boy liar or you can pretend your life away in your world of truth YOU create. Sorry…You don’t get to own your own truth or facts.

          • mike

            Can’t prove Bain went into bankruptcy as you claim, can you?? You said: “it was a matter of record and you can prove it.”
            What a joke you are. You think you are so brilliant, but alas, you’re just another left winger with little knowledge and all emotion.

          • Eleanore Whitaker

            Wrong…I can prove it….Pig Face. Bain Capital went into bankruptcy…here’s one link: …Here’s another: Now..Pig Face…Bain Capital went bankrupt back in 2001. Go to the .gov site if you can manage any mental acuity or physical dexterity other than playing with yourself.

            Here’s another Pig Face: From Forbes on the Bain Tax evasion investigation:

   you want to keep up the BS Mr. MAN supremacy routine now that I’ve taken your testicles down to raisin size?

          • mike

            Now you are just plain nuts. There is not one mention of Bain going Bankrupt in 2001. Companies that Bain invested in, like Dade Behring, may have gone under but Bain Capital never did.
            It never went bankrupt, plus the fact that Romney left to manage the Olympics in 1999 and never returned to Bain.

          • Eleanore Whitaker

            Are you suffering mental retardation or are you just plain stupid? You can go to the .gov website and find the same Bain Capital bankruptcy records for 2001. Not one mention…to you? Well of course not, dipshit…You can’t get the dung out of your ears long enough or the right wing bully BS out of your eyes to pay attention.

            Here’s more for you to pretend you didn’t see or read it from the Wall Street Journal:

            “Among the findings: 22% either filed for bankruptcy reorganization or closed their doors by the end of the eighth year after Bain first invested, sometimes with substantial job losses. An additional 8% ran into so much trouble that all of the money Bain invested was lost.”

            More: “However, Romney’s record reveals that much of his wealth came from leveraging companies with crushing debt and using a team of trusted specialists who mastered the art of manipulating bankruptcies that left investors and creditors with little or nothing. After looking at some of the companies Bain Capital managed and eventually bankrupted, a pattern develops that begs the question; did Mitt Romney & Bain Capital own a bankruptcy ring consisting of Jack Bush, Barry Gold, Paul Traub, and Michael Glazer?”

            Grow up..Bain Capital’s only claim to fame is buying and selling companies, they then bankrupt to make a profit. That first steel mill they invested in as Bain’s first attempt at venture capitalism went belly up and Bain quickly filed for bankruptcy to recoup the $12 million it originally invested. Try again hot shot…your pissass attempts are sickening.

          • mike

            Bain Capital, Inc. never filed for bankruptcy, some companies they invested in did, but never Bain Capital.
            You are so positive copy and paste showing Bain Capital, not a company they invested in, filed for bankruptcy. I won’t waste my time because Bain Capita, an investment firm, never filed for bankruptcy.
            Show me the evidence that Bain Capital went bankrupt, they didn’t.

          • Eleanore Whitaker

            Wrong…again. Or, should that be as usual. A venture capital corporation like Bain is totally, wholly, entirely based on buying and selling businesses. In 2001, Bain Capital made a deal to buy a steel company. What about that don’t you morons call “ownership?” In buying that steel company, Bain bankrupted it and filed bankruptcy to recoup the losses of $34 million they paid for it.

            If you buy any company, you own it and all of its assets and liabilities. If you buy it and it goes belly up while you own it, you legally have the right to file Chapter 9 or 11. Which is exactly what Bain as owner of that steel company did…But..nice try Joy Boy…at pretending you can buy a company, bankrupt it and the pretend you are not the owner of the bankruptcy.

          • mike

            Can’ t find the documentation can you?? Bain Capital, Inc. never filed for Bankruptcy.
            If Bain Capital had filed, the democrats would have used it against Romney in 2012.

          • Eleanore Whitaker

            Are you a moron or what? I provided you with 3 links and now you are pretending like all Peter Pan boys do that you were not given those links? Bain owned that steel company. It went belly up. Bain filed for bankruptcy as the owner of the steel company it purchased.

            The Democrats DID use it against Romney. Where the hell were you? ON drugs? booze? It was a major reason Romney lost the election ..that and his 47% remarks after he and Bain helped themselves to tax subsidies on their bankruptcy filings…The reality is that Bain bought dozens of companies they knew were going to fail so they could file bankruptcies and collect tax revenue from bankruptcy filings.

            Now, all of that money sitting in Bain’s tax free bank account offshore in the Caymen Islands is being investigated by the Justice Dept.

            More: “The entire reason Mitt Romney sought to be “retroactively” resigned from August 2001 (back to February 1999) – is that is the exact same period of time that Colm Connolly was a member of the Morris Nichols Arsht & Tunnel (“MNAT”) law firm.

            MNAT and Paul Traub are both connected to Goldman Sachs/ Bain Capital. They have admitted to lying under oath to the Chief federal justice in Delaware to get inside eToys.

            Inexplicably, they were NOT prosecuted for fraud & confessed, deliberate acts of perjury. Colm Connolly was made the U.S. Attorney in Delaware on August 2, 2001 – and refused to investigate his former partners/ clients for 7 years. There are more than 103 crimes and corruption.”


            According to you, you can buy companies force them to fail and then file for bankruptcy to collect taxpayer dollars for Chapter 9 or 11 filings?

            And, the indictment implicates, yet again, Bain’s collusion with Goldman Sachs, which also brings into focus how Goldman Sachs took TARP and ARRA funding for their mortgaging division who approved ARMS they knew would fail while collecting the insurance on those failed mortgages and picking up billions in profits on foreclosed properties they owned as a result of scam mortgaging. Worse, these were resold to developers for a 3rd flush of profits.

          • mike

            You’re the Moron, you haven’t given me even a scintilla, smidgen of documents that proves Bain Capital Inc ever filed for bankruptcy. Looks like you can’t comprehend, Bain Capital Inc is an investment company, has never filed for Bankruptcy. Yes, companies that they invested in did declare bankruptcy, but what you can’t fathom is the fact the way it was structured, BTW, legally, Bain Capital never declared bankruptcy, they made millions off these companies in trouble, which they legally could do. Interesting that the Clinton had 8 years to sic the DOJ and IRS after Bain. It looks like they couldn’t find cause.
            That site you sent me to could not be found, their words.

          • Eleanore Whitaker

            Please get professional mental help. You live in a world of denial. You are like a little baby …spoiled rotten and then when you don’t get your way? You blame others or you pull a tantrum. When that doesn’t work? You deny deny deny deny…,When that gets too obvious you are mentally damaged, you lie, lie, lie lie…But thank you for proving what a mentally unstable man you are.

          • mike

            Good old Eleanore giving me another wonderful laugh.
            I guess all those proclivities are working on your brain.
            You just can’t find those bankruptcy records of Bain Capital, poor little Tweety Bird.

          • Eleanore Whitaker

            Good old Mikey…still can’t face the facts? Men who live in mental fogs like you do are candidates for science experiments. You think you can just pretend I didn’t give you the information and that you will then have what little boys with big baby attitudes want? Your way…wah wah wah…Mikee hates being wrong. wah wah wah ….Mike hates when he’s proven wrong…wah wah wah…Mike is sitting on his fat “A” wishing any one of his BS posts have merit…uh oh…smell that odor? It’s Mikeee’s pampers…they are loaded again.

            From Wikipedia: By 1985, things were going poorly enough that Romney considered closing the operation, returning investors’ money back to them, and having the partners go back to their old positions.[25] The partners saw weak spots in so many potential deals that by 1986, very few had been done.[26

          • mike

            Those strange proclivities are really having an effect on your thinking.
            You said: …”Bain Capital…really…they went bankrupt in their first 12 years of
            business and dumped over million in bankruptcy costs on taxpayers.
            That’s a matter of record I can prove to an asshat like you in a court of law if you need it.”

            We have all been waiting that “matter of record” showing Bain Capital, Inc. went bankrupt. Not one of their investments, you know they are an investment company don’t you???
            Bain Capital never went bankrupt, that my dear is a Fact.
            What is even more hilarious is your last paragraph. Nowhere does it say bankrupt, only you could make the stretch that “poorly’ meant bankrupt. Funny!!
            No, Eleanore you are another dishonest ideologue, caught in a misstatement/lie, who would go to any length, such as lying, to try an extricate yourself from a lost position.

            Produce the record showing Bain Capital, Inc. went BANKRUPT IN THE FIRST 12 YEARS, hell I will give you up to the time Romney left in 1999 for the Olympics.

          • Eleanore Whitaker

            Bain Capital, as you knew asshat is a venture capital company that buys businesses. Who owns those businesses? Are you really so far down the totem on brains?

            If any venture capital business buys businesses and then AFTER the sale, those businesses end up in bankruptcy…who owns them if not the VC business?

            I knew you were a dipshit. I just didn’t realize you didn’t have the capacity to understand the legal specs on bankruptcy.

            Here is a Newsweek article written by Paul Begala in May 2012: Verbatim asshat…:
            “When Bain owned Steel Dynamics, Romney and his investors took $37 million in taxpayer subsidies — a sweet deal when they only invested about half that amount themselves. Tad DeHaven of the Libertarian Cato Institute tole the Los Angeles Times, “This is corporate welfare, an example of government stepping into the marketplace, picking winners and losers, providing profits to business owners and leaving taxpayers stuck with the bill.

            Classic crony capitalism: privatize gain, socialize risk. When Romney drove GST Steel into bankruptcy, he and his partners made $12 million in profit….and another $4.5 million in consulting fees. But Romney stuck taxpayers with a $44 million tab for the company’s underfunded pensions.”

            Okay asshat…”Bain owned Steel Dynamics….” “Romney drove GST Steel (owned by Bain) into bankruptcy”….Unless you the unequivocally stupidest pissass to come down the pike, when YOU OWN a business and it goes bankrupt…YOU not the business name is filing for bankruptcy…Now jerkface…go to the government website and find out who in GST Steel’s name filed the bankruptcy…it was BAIN BAIN BAIN BAIN BAIN BAIN…. Sorry assface…You are wrong and your know it. Your manical need to prove otherwise is showing how low in the intelligence food chain you are.

          • mike

            Show me where Bain Capital Inc. filed bankruptcy. You are so ignorant that you can’t understand how they were structured. GST declared bankruptcy not Bain Capital you ignoramus. Big difference!!
            One more time Bain Capital never went bankrupt.
            Once more show me the bankruptcy records with the name Bain Capital, Inc. having gone bankrupt. Heck, you can’t even prove your claim they went under in the first 12 years.
            You said it is a matter of record and you would show me.
            As i said before you don’t know what your talking about and will try anything to extricate yourself from a lie.
            Go on keeping wasting your time. Have you noticed none of your buddies have come to your aid. Even they know you are wrong.

          • Eleanore Whitaker

            I am not going to show a slime ball like you anything more. You are such a moron. I’d love nothing more than to shove my size 6 shoe up your stupid butt to reactivate your brain.

            I am not wasting my time..I am refusing to let you have the last word pig face.

          • mike

            Poor Eleanore, caught in a lie and can’t wiggle herself out of it.

          • Eleanore Whitaker

            Since I worked for CEOs and you have never held down a job in your pathetic life…I have NO reason to lie..but nice slicky boy try at worming your way out of your BS…You are a mental case…Get a job, get a life and get professional mental help. Anyone who has ever dealt with VCs knows what I posted is a fact. In fact, one of the VP’s I worked with was a VC hired to sell off part of the lab division of our company…So Mr. BS artist…you still want to pretend you are not a liar? A pathetic pissass spoiled brat who still can’t wipe your own butt?

          • mike

            Now where are those “records” showing Bain Capital, Inc. went Bankrupt??
            You are nothing more than a joke with some weird proclivities.

          • Eleanore Whitaker

            ROFLMAO!!!!!!!!!!Pissbrain MIkeeeeeeee…can’t stand that Bain Capital OWNED that steel company. BAIN Capital filed the bankruptcy as the OWNER and now pissbrain Mikeee is busy playing with himself so he doesn’t have to go nuts admitting he was given more facts than his pissbrain can handle.

            You are nothing more than a male abuser. I’d bet anything your wife left you after you bellowed, stomped around and punched hell out of her every other day…You are one sick sick sick sick dude…A man who is given all the facts and still insists, insists, insists, he is right or needs more proof is a man who is so sick he can’t stand the idea that a woman is smarter than him and can prove in a court of law what I posted.

            Now abuser boy…don’t you have some son or daughter to go and beat on? Your bullying BS doesn’t make a twit’s teat with me…You can’t stand that you ARE wrong..Mikeeee is wrong….Mikeeeeee is wrong….Mikeeeee is wrong….and a pissbrain to add to his mental misery.

          • mike

            All you have to do is show the documentation, which you said:”was matter of record”. Produce the documentation, copy and paste showing that Bain Capital Inc filed for bankruptcy under Bain Capital, not under the name of a debtor company they invested in.
            As I said earlier, you are “losing it” from all your weird proclivities.

          • Eleanore Whitaker

            Since there is not a way to show you the paperwork in black and white…on a thread…Why are you niggling over the documentation that I provided and the links that clearly show that Bain Capital WAS the owner of the steel company when it went belly up.

            You have a mental illness problem. I can only imagine what your must have put your school teachers through with your belligerent, obstinate, contradictory nature. You are one sick pup. Get help. I am not going to do your work for you.

            I stated that Bain Capital owned the steel company. I proved it by several links and a statement from Newsweek..and still you act like a dipshit who refuses to accept the facts. That only serves to prove what a very sick sick sick sick sick sick dude you are. Get help before you go postal.

          • mike

            I see you are being disingenuous again.
            The links you gave showed that the Bain Capital, Inc. never filed for bankruptcy. They made millions for their investors. Some of the companies they invested in when bankrupt never Bain Capital, Inc..
            If you could prove it with documentation you would have, but you can’t. Copy and paste this documentation showing Bain Capital, Inc., not some company they invested in.
            What you can’t get in your pea brain the “steel company” filed for bankruptcy not Bain Capital.

          • Eleanore Whitaker

            Mikeeeee is wrong again. Mikeeee hates truth….Mikeeee will sit on his double wide sized “A” and continue to deny, deny, deny, deny…Most mental cases have to live in LA LA land or admit they are nuts.

            I proved that Bain Capital owned GST and I proved that it went bankrupt AFTER Bain Capital bought it. I proved that Bain Capital then dumped a bankruptcy filing on taxpayers….while they owned GST.

            Now..if you are trying to pull your silly little childish tantrums by deliberately inventing your own truth and facts, you can continue this tirade and ranting BS because Mikeeeee YOU have met YOUR match..I am not about to give in to a dipshit mental case like you. So…have at it buster..I am fully prepared to make a bigger dipshit of you if I have to.

          • mike

            Why is it so hard for you to copy and paste the official bankruptcy documents showing Bain Capital filed for bankruptcy under Bain Capital, Inc.. The company GTS filed bankruptcy not Bain Capital.

            All you have to do produce the documentation showing Bain Capital, filed bankruptcy under its name. We all know that companies invested in went under but not Bain Capital.

            Here is your progress site you pasted, notice it never says Bain Capital filed bankruptcy. Your argument was based on this site and it shows Bain never filed.


          • Eleanore Whitaker

            MIkeee the Mental Case…Bain Capital Owned GST Steel at the time BAIN, not GST filed for bankruptcy.

            I am not going to allow you to try and lie and play your silly bossy boy bitchy boy routine with me. Do all middle aged men go nuts when midlife crisis hits?

            You have all of the links you but you are a COWARD…got that? a COWARD…You are mentally ill.

            I don’t have to copy and paste anything. I already gave you the citation from Newsweek published and the book, “American Dynasty” which also cited the Bain Capital dumping of a half dozen bankruptcies on US taxpayers.

            A stupid asshat like you can find you penis in the morning…to urinate..Why would you be able to make any sense of truth and facts? Sorry…You are wrong wrong..oh how I love making you look like a jerk.

          • mike

            Your ignorance of the business world is breathtaking.

            Bain Capital never filed for bankruptcy, period. GTS’s new entity did under its name not Bain Capital.

            Only in mental midget brain did you show me anything coming close to Bain Capital being on the bankruptcy documentation. If it was you would have produced it.

            Try this one.


            You said: …”Bain Capital…really…they went bankrupt in their first 12 years of
            business and dumped over million in bankruptcy costs on taxpayers.” Those are your words!!

            Now produce the records showing Bain Capital went bankrupt, all you can show is a company Bain invested in filed for bankruptcy. Bain Capital, Inc. never filed for bankruptcy.

          • Eleanore Whitaker

            Wrong again Joy Boy…those are the words I posted which came from sources like the NY Times, Newsweek and the NY Post. Hate it don’t you? Hate it that you have to now go to these media archives and find these articles and break a sweat to prove yourself wrong. Just so you won’t fall over from the labor…here’s another link from Reuters from Jan. 2012 regarding Bain’s involvement in the GST bankruptcy filing:…/us-campaign-romney-bailout-idUSTRE8050…Reuters

            And another: …boy are you a mental case. Need more proof of Bain’s bankruptcy games? There are plenty more where these came from.

          • mike

            What the heck is wrong with you. Bain never filed for bankruptcy, Period. GST as a company filed but not Bain. Your reuters site when clicked said “page not found”.

            The other article if you had read it said “By the time the “company”(GST) legally filed for bankruptcy, Romney and his firm had made at least $9 million in profit. Former company officials said the mill, which had been operating since 1888, could have dealt better with market fluctuations if Bain had not forced the company to take on unsustainable debt. A finance professor remarked that using debt to pay large dividends to Bain left the company less prepared for a downturn.” Notice the word “company” which is GST, not Bain.

            Now this time read and try and comprehend the WikipediA article, go to the 1990’s heading. Read down and notice the last paragraph under 1990’s heading. It said the following, “By the end of the decade, Bain Capital was on its way to being one of the top private equity firms in the nation,[24] having increased its number of partners from 5 to 18, having 115 employees overall, and having $4 billion under its management.[16][18] The firm’s average annual return on investments was 113 percent.[17][67] It had made between 100 and 150 deals where it acquired and then sold a company.[31][51][52]”


            Bain Capital never filed for bankruptcy, GST did, but not Bain Capital.

            Not forget you said, You said: …”Bain Capital…really…they went bankrupt in their first 12 years of business and dumped over million in bankruptcy costs on taxpayers.” Those are your words!!

            “they(Bain Capital” went bankrupt in their first 12 years of business” your words, which is not true.

          • Independent1

            Maybe she can’t prove Bain went bankrupt, but given that all you or me or any other American has seen of Mitt Romney’s tax records are two years worth of tax records that were clearly FABRICATED to show a tax rate of close to 15% (the capital gains rate). Anyone that doesn’t think those 2 years of tax records were clearly fabricated is a total moron such as yourself.

            Mitt Romney adamantly refused to disclose his tax records because had he done so, he would today be in jail. Because people looking at those records and then the records that were later disclosed of Romney’s dealings with across the pond investments, would have easily discovered that Mitt was concealing millions of income that he was not reporting.

            And people would have taken a real close look at mitts 100 million dollar 401K, which contained more money than it was possible to accumulate in a 401K over 15 years without playing some illegal tricks – tricks like grossly undervaluing stock that he had allotted himself in many of his bankruptcy dealing, clearly intended to shield the realization that he was dumping shares of what were supposedly valueless companies into his 401k, only to have those shares suddenly magically appear in his 401k a couple years later being worth hundreds/thousands of times more than what he claimed in his tax records were their value when he reported his income.

            Any nitwit that thinks Mitt adamantly refused to declare any returns that were actually created before 2011 – remember his 2011 return was created AFTER he agreed to release it. And remember too that when he released his 2012 return, that the only reason it showed a tax rate of around 14 percent – is because Mitt decided not to claim millions of dollars in charity deductions. Had he declared those charity deductions his bottom line rate would have been closer or under 10%.

            Now here is a summation of an article from politicususa reviewing some of Mitt’s very nefarious dealings while in charge of Bain Capital where he used bankruptcy as the main mechanism for destroying companies in a way that left investors, debt owners and virtually everyone else but Mitt and his cronies with virtually nothing while they pocketed millions.

            Here’s the summation paragraph from that review:

            Willard Romney is appealing to the American people to elect him as president of the United States because he got filthy rich eviscerating and bankrupting companies. If he is elected president will he appoint his trusted bankruptcy team to rape and pillage the Social Security Trust and Medicare to reward his cronies on Wall Street? Romney says his experience creating wealth for himself is the reason he should be handed the keys to the White House, but after bankrupting company after company for profit, how long before he bankrupts America with Bain Capital’s “creative destruction” method and handpicked bankruptcy team? Does Willard “Mitt” Romney have a Barry Gold, Michael Glazer, Paul Traub bankruptcy ring problem? The American people deserve answers, and if Romney were not ethically bankrupt himself, he would provide answers.



          • mike

            No she can’t prove Bain Capital, Inc. ever filed bankruptcy. In 2012 the democrats would have had a ball with that information but they couldn’t, and therefore didn’t.

            As to the Reid, he had no evidence just hearsay, and on the Senate floor he is immune to prosecution. What a coward.



            As to the rest of your post prove your accusations. Where was the Clinton IRS during this time, did they check his returns? Why didn’t they go after him if there were problems? Wait, could it be there wasn’t anything wrong?

            I hope that diarrhea of the brain gets better!!!

          • Independent1

            Anyone with an ounce of common sense knows Romney is guilty of tax fraud – why the IRS doesn’t do more to prosecute him is beyond me. NO one running for president adamantly refuses to disclose back tax returns without a very good reason, especially when is father set the gold standard of transparency by having disclosed his for 12 years. Romeny is clearly guilty of tax fraud for shielding income earned abroad that should have been declared (or because he had had to take advantage of a prior amnesty period for having done so).

            And whatever the issue with Reid – whether he’s right or wrong isn’t criminal – like Mitch McConnel’s activities recently are very closely bordering on –

            See this article on Mitch’s father in-law:

            “40kg Of Cocaine Found On Mitch McConnell’s Father-In-Law’s Boat”

            James Chao, father of Mitch McConnell’s wife Elaine, has a lot of questions to answer after 40 kilograms of cocaine (about $6.7 million worth) was found on the Ping May, a ship owned by the Foremost Group, a company James Chao founded and led to a tidy fortune. But was that fortune built on honest movement of legitimate bulk trade goods, or has Mr. Chao been trading in less than legal goods?

            The cocaine, found in 40 separate packages, was discovered during a routine inspection hidden among a load of coal bound for Europe from the port of Santa Marta, Columbia onboard the Ping May, one of 15 ships Foremost currently operates, with another 8 under construction. The final destination for the ship was to be the Netherlands, likely one of the port cities surrounding Amsterdam. It is known that the Ping May has been witnessed at the port of Zaanstad, one of these cities, in the past.

            Foremost Group is the source of most of Senator McConnell’s fortune through gifts and inheritance from his in-laws. It is a shadowy corporation, utilizing a complex scheme of shell companies to skip out on millions in taxes annually.

            From The Nation:

            Foremost acts as a shipping agent, purchasing vessels made primarily in China and coordinating shipment of commodities. Records reviewed by The Nation reveal that Foremost transports corn, chemicals and other goods to cities throughout the world. The company has offices in New York and Hong Kong.

            Some of the goods shipped by Foremost echo themes of the McConnell campaign. At a Young Professionals Association of Louisville event this month, McConnell stressed his opposition to carbon dioxide limits imposed by the federal government that would impact the domestic coal market. He argued that such efforts would be fruitless given the role of coal in developing countries and the rising coal trade. Foremost ships routinely transport coal from ports in Australia and Colombia, countries with cheap coal, for export to Asia and Europe.

            The firm, however, leaves a faint online trace. Foremost’s website is blank. Records and court documents obtained by The Nation show that the ownership of the company’s vessels—with names such as Ping May, Soya May, Fu May and Grain May—is obscured through a byzantine structure of tax entities. Most of Foremost’s vessels are flagged in Liberia, which ensures that crew members of Foremost’s ships work under Liberia’s maritime labor laws, which critics note allow for intimidation in the workplace and few protections for labor unions. In addition, a Liberian “flag of convenience” allows ship owners to pay lower tonnage taxes than ships that fly the US flag. Maritime companies have increasingly used the Marshall Islands to register their vessels. The jurisdiction boasts of “no taxation, lax regulation, and no requirements for disclosure of many corporate details—even to the United States government,” according to a report in World Policy Journal.


          • mike

            Thanks for the good laugh!!! The way you think and act certainly puts you in the category of a delusional person.

          • Independent1

            Delusional because I believe that a person who would operate a leverage-buyout company in a way that’s intended more to increase his wealth than really be beneficial to not only the owners, creditors and investors of companies he’s bought out while destroying them here in America, would also cheat on his taxes?? A guy who would actually have bought and destroyed, here in America, the American auto industry at a time when our country was in the process of losing 14 million jobs, if he had been given the chance to??

            Come on!! When Reagan was campaigning for the presidency the 1st time and disingeniously calling on Obama to let GM and Chrysler go bankrupt, although he may not have been working for Bain, he was working with some buddies like the Billionaire Singer, to buy out and destroy the auto industries largest small parts maker Delphi (once called Delco). When America was in the throes of trying to work out the auto-bailout – Romney, Singer and some other investment cronies were busy buying out Delphi which had almost 25,000 union workers.

            Because of the auto bailout, Delphi’s stock price had tumbled from somewhere in the mid $20/share to around 69 cents per share so Romney with his cronies bought it out, and rather than resurrect it here in America, they pulled the bankruptcy trick and then lets ship the company overseas trick. This allowed them to:

            strip Delphi of all it’s assets including it’s pension assets, pocket all those while dumping 25,000 American union workers onto unemployment with quite a number of workers falling into retirement paid for by the American taxpayer.

            it allowed Romney to dump for himself probably hundreds of thousands of shares of Delphi into his magic 401k at probably something like a few pennies/share because now that the company was bankrupt shares were essentially worthless.

            Having destroyed Delphi in America to work out a deal in China for resurrecting the company – transferring over of course all the American ingenuity for machining and creating small auto parts.

            having not only made for himself at the time a huge profit, but also having now put hundreds of thousands of shares of Delphi in his magic 401k which when Delphi would become operational again in China make him a fortune in that magic 401k while saving him big tax dollars because he could record on this tax return say; that he had dumped 100,000 virtually worthless shares of Delphi a 5 cents a share or 5,000 dollars, which once the shares returned into the $20/share range – say $25/share would become 2.5 million.

            And you think I’m delusional to believe that someone who is as money hungry as Mitt that he would have destroyed Delphi – and he and Singer and his cronies would have bought GM and Chrysler and done the same thing – even in the midst of the Great Recession would think twice about cheating on his taxes??? You’re the one that’s delusional if you think that dirtbag wouldn’t!!!!!!

          • mike

            Only in your Mind did Mitt do anything illegal.
            You are wasting your time and energy saying nothing.
            Again, where was Clinton and IRS if there was even a smidgen of tax cheating on Mitt’s part?

          • Independent1

            Wow!! And you want anyone here to give any credibility to your posts when you’re so clearly partisan!!! Go stick your head in the mud someplace which is clearly where you keep it!!!!!!

          • mike

            Now you really have me laughing my a$$ off.
            You said, “you’re Clearly partisan”, that is hilarious coming from you being one of the biggest ideologue on the left.
            Keep it coming, you make me laugh, which is good for my health.

          • Independent1

            That’s only because over the past 30 years Conservatives in government have become so crooked that they’re actually more morally corrupt than the Italian Mafia. As much as I look, I can’t come up with one bona fide issue that the GOP has pushed for that does not have some underlying crooked motivation attached to it. At least I’ve voted for a number of GOP political candidates in the past including 3 presidential candidates: Eisenhower, Ford and Bush 1; can you identify one Democrat you’ve actually ever voted for???

          • mike

            Thanks, every time you make asinine remarks, like above, that makes me laugh which makes me healthier. I love having you around.
            Actually in my youth, you know, the old expression “If you’re not liberal when you’re young, you have no heart. If you’re not conservative when you’re older, you have no brain.” NOT attributed to Churchill.
            Hey, quit attacking my family, if you don’t I will have to send Uncle Guido. 🙂

          • mike

            Enjoy watching you twisting yourself into a pretzel.
            So pathetic!!
            If he had done anything illegal it would have all been brought out in 2012. If Obama can use the IRS to go after conservatives groups he surely had them looking at all of Mitt’s returns.
            Keep trying, I love watching your blood pressure rise.

          • Independent1

            Now your venturing into the ridiculous with Obama – going after conservatives via the IRS. That fake scandal was just one more fabrication of Darrell Issa. The IRS actually was concentrating more on progressives than conservatives IN ITS EFFORTS TO DO ITS JOB!!! ENSURE GROUPS LOOKING FOR TAX-FREE STATUS WERE NOT IN FACT ENGAGED IN POLITICAL ACTIVITY!!

            See this chart which shows that:

          • mike

            No, that has been so debunked by the IRS Inspector General and legitimate press. As usual, you are lying.

            Here is what the IRS Inspector General said.

            The inspector general found tea party groups were systematically singled out as part of an office-wide effort, while progressive groups were not.

          • Independent1

            And in case you’re not believing my accounting below, here’s a little excerpt that goes even a little beyond what I described (notice the statement that even back in the 2011 timeframe Mitt had made at least 50 million in his dealings with Singer):

            From the DailyBeast:

            This excellent piece by Greg Palast from The Nation deserves some attention. Ann Romney’s blind trust was invested with a hedge fund that took over (and took apart) Delphi, the GM parts maker, and closed down 29 unionized plants here in the US and moved almost all the jobs to China. Accoroding to Palast, the Romneys made millions from this process, partly courtesy the US taxpayer, and the fund managers, big Romney backers, made billions with a b.

            The description of the Romneys’ role comes toward the end. Singer is Paul Singer, the head of the hedge fund in question, which is Elliott below:

            In their 2011 and 2012 Federal Financial Disclosure filing, Ann Romney’s trust lists “more than $1 million” invested with Elliott. This is the description for all of her big investments—the minimal disclosure required by law. (Had Romney kept the holding in his own name, he would have had to reveal if his investment with Singer had made more than $50 million.)


      • Sand_Cat

        Wow, and conservatives certainly NEVER despised anyone, or drove them from their party, right?
        When one party becomes the party of savage intolerance and justifies it with reference to a religion allegedly founded by someone who said to love one’s enemies, how can you be surprised that many political opponents of that party are suspicious of that religion?

        • mike

          What are you trying to do? Be Eleanore’s BFF!!!
          But you progressives with your superior intellect, NOT, think your thoughts are superior to all. Which is really a fallacy.
          Talk about “savage intolerance”, that’s funny. When you democrats live in a glass house you shouldn’t throw stones.

    • TimeMiddleClassRanThisShow

      correct, secular society is the very foundation of right and wrong. In the USA, religions MUST adhere to our laws first!

  • TimeMiddleClassRanThisShow

    separation, however we need to recognize that religions that are not managed by parishioners, whose property and finances aren’t solely owned by parishioners, whose hierarchy isn’t voted by parishioners and whose membership is open to everyone nd anyone,, needs to be taxed as a business, including property.

  • mpjt16

    I am always amazed that intelligent men and women can believe in the myth and superstition of the 150 or so religions in the world. Many of which think they are the one true path to heaven. The New Testament was written, mostly, a hundred years or so after Jesus died. Of course the authors would try to validate their stories by making up correlations with the Old Testament so the “see, it is true” segment could feel good. Why the bible has any more validity that Mt Olympus amazes me.

  • Whatmeworry

    Its a shame that the Sen hasn’t ever read the constitution. There is NO separation clause only an establishment one

    • TimeMiddleClassRanThisShow

      one thing for sure, our founding father knew first hand the destruction religion caused. Keep them out of government was their primary concern. Today we give them our tax dollars through grants, subsidies and exemptions. Time to end that!

      • As a Scientologist, I agree that all of your god/jesus/allah based religions are destructive. I’m sure our forefathers would have gone along with LR Hubbards teachings of Xenu

        • Daniel Max Ketter

          Ah, one of THOSE kooks.

        • Elliot J. Stamler

          First, it is YOU who need to understand the “establishment” clause IS what as Jefferson famously wrote creates the wall of separation between church and state. Second, since you do not have good manners not to defame all other religions and proclaim yourself a Scientologist, I will respond in kind by telling you that Scientology is the biggest money-grubbing con, hoax and crap out there and anybody who gives them thousands of dollars is a dimwit..including you, Whatmeworry/Alfred E. Neuman-the grinning idiot.

          • How dare you

          • Whatmeworry

            I suggest you read the constitution which governs this country not 1 of our founders mental wanderings

          • Elliot J. Stamler

            This is funny…a Scientologist writing that the thought and views of Pres. Jefferson represent “mental wanderings.”

          • I suggest you read the Dianetics instead of the constitution which governs this country not 1 of our founders mental wanderings

        • ralphkr

          Marvelous, Whameworry, that you belong to a religion founded on a bet made by a Science Fiction author, i.e., that he could sucker people into believing his fictional artifact.

      • Whatmeworry

        HUH??? The founders had 1 agenda that the federal govt had no business messing with religions nothing more . Religion exemption from taxation pales in comparison in what they contribute to society a save the taxpayers with their services from schools to hospitals

        • Hail Xenu

        • TimeMiddleClassRanThisShow

          religion owned hospitals are typically scaled down offering the same service as major hospitals. Difference is that religion owned hospitals are more profitable due to their poorer quality of care at the same prices as other hospitals.

          Private colleges owned by religious organizations charge considerable tuition leaving the student with a high debt and the tax payer paying the interest during the term the student is in school.

          Religions receive grants, our tax dollar, for schools and hospitals.

          Profit centers leaching off the taxpayer, nothing more.

          • Whatmeworry

            They are usually the BEST in providing care since profit isn’t their motive. Just look at VA hospitals and tell me about how well they function

          • Daniel Max Ketter

            Shouldn’t military veterans start paying into their heath care and life insurance like taxpayers/union workers? I know they don’t pay taxes and mooch off the taxpayers dole, but still.

          • They are usually the WORST in providing care since profit isn’t their
            motive. Just look at VA hospitals and see how well they

          • Daniel Max Ketter

            Religious hospitals are not working for a profit, unlike atheist hospitals. I feel good that my tax dollars are going toward our all mighty instead of some rich conservative fat cat.

          • TimeMiddleClassRanThisShow

            too funny.. Yes, they are profitable. How about this..

            According to Morgan-chase, the vatican receives over 678 billion in revenue from colleges, hospitals, insurance companies.. Yes, businesses they own. More so, the vatican receives billions in tax exemptions, grants and a tax free ride. We all pay the taxes they don’t. In fact they receive far more in our taxes than they do ‘Free’ work’.

            And with 678 billion a year, why are there starving children?

        • Daniel Max Ketter

          Union labor organizations contribute the most to society, we should thank them for their meritorious service. God bless our unions, from the high leadership, to the stewards (and retired ones like yours truly!), to the due paying members.

        • HUH??? The founders had 1 agenda that the federal govt had no business
          messing with abortions nothing more, and a fetus is not a human until birth. Women have the right to choose whether thay want to remove a fetus, just like I have a right to choose to remove a hairy mole off my fat keyster, or take a crap in a toilet

      • HUH??? The founders of Scientology had 1 agenda that the federal govt had no business messing with religions nothing more . Religion exemption from taxation
        pales in comparison in what they contribute to society a save the
        taxpayers with their services from schools to hospitals

        • TimeMiddleClassRanThisShow

          people contribute to society, not religions. with or without religion, it’s people, atheists included.

    • Daniel Max Ketter

      What does the constitution or separation clauses have to do with your whacky cult?

    • Staci Kittern Disbrow

      Why are you in scienctology? Don’t you know that’s dangerous fool!

    • Sand_Cat

      What a shame that you haven’t the sense of a rock.

      • Whatmeworry

        The fact that I can read the constitution places me head and shoulders above you

        • The fact that I read Dianetics places me head and shoulders above everyone

      • Elliot J. Stamler

        He/she DOES have the sense of a rock!

        • The fact that I can’t read the constitution places me head and shoulders above you

    • Yes I agree that labor unions have built this country up, and are still a necessity today more than ever

  • I enjoy being an Annihilist. It’s the perfect religion for people committed to bringing on the bomb, and I get tax breaks. That’s what makes religion great in the U.S. of A. Tax breaks and fairy tales.