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About God's Spies
The world-historical clock on the wall says "tick tick tick." Let's look at what's in store.
Welcome to God's Spies by Thomas Neuburger. I’m a long-time professional writer, author of stories, poems, essays and non-fiction books. My work has appeared in the San Francisco Chronicle, Common Dreams, Alternet, Naked Capitalism, DownWithTyranny! and many other venues. I’ve written political analysis under my own name and the byline “Gaius Publius” since 2003.
Who Are God’s Spies?
God’s spies are all of us. In so many ways it feels like we’re in a novel, a massive tale peopled with “packs and sects of great ones” in which hundreds of the powerful rule and ruin the lives of the millions beneath them, all playing out as if the the global climate crisis weren’t waiting in the wings to end the tale and launch a sadder story.
What You’ll See Here
Since I write for many venues, this site will collect all of my more substantial work. This is its primary purpose.
From time to time I'll post updated earlier work, pieces that aid in understanding what we’re going through now.
I’ll also offer Substack-only writing — essays that won’t appear anywhere else and previews of works-in-progress, some fiction, some non-fiction. There are three long works in the bin right now, starting with a look at the Next American Constitution — the one we’ve been drafting since Bush took the nation down an authoritarian path.
What You Won't See
You won't be spammed — emails will come at most once or twice a week — and you won't be hounded with requests for money.
Anyone is welcome to become a paid subscriber (with my heartfelt thanks!), but that's not the point of the site. The point is to collect new work, give supporters a chance to comment on it in the context of the rest of the site, and build a readership for a coherent vision of where these world-historical times are taking us.
What People Are Saying
Brilliant work. A really GREAT writer who often catches what many others miss.
—Thom Hartmann, host of the Thom Hartmann Program
An exciting new venture from an insightful commentator, promising context over hot takes.
—Cory Doctorow, novelist & digital rights activist
Tom Neuburger, a/k/a “Gaius Publius,” gives us the kind of moving insight into that buzz called “today” that we might expect from Demosthenes, Pericles or Cicero, but not from anyone under the age of 2000. Not just who, what, when, and where, but the all-important how and why. Something’s happening. If you want to understand it, then read here.
—Alan Grayson, former U.S. Congressman (D-Florida)
Definitely subscribe to God's Spies. Thomas Neuburger's writing is unique, brave and rejects the group think and ideological orthodoxy that plagues some of the Left.
I get to read the essays Tom puts up at DownWithTyranny before they're published and I don't think he's ever written one from which I didn't learn something. His expertise and dedication to detail is what makes him so popular and appreciated among the blog's readers.
—Howie Klein, editor of DownWithTyranny, co-owner of Blue America PAC
On the right, the darkness of ignorance is penetrated only by the fierce light of insanity. On the liberal/neoliberal spectrum lies something that could be called a "simulacrum of sanity." This is a funhouse-mirror view of the world; reality is reflected there, but distorted. Thomas Neuburger, by contrast, offers true political sanity. That is a rare and precious thing. I am pleased to recommend his writing, which is always thought-provoking and insightful. I am even more pleased to call him my friend.
—RJ Eskow, Senior Advisor at Social Security Works, host of The Zero Hour
Thomas Neuburger, the writer formerly known as Gaius Publius, is a must-read for me. I don’t always agree with him, but he pushes through my comfort zone and makes me think deep, and that’s a good thing.
—Nicole Sandler, host of the Nicole Sandler Show
Where Does the Title "God's Spies" Come From?
Good question. It comes from the last act of King Lear, in which Lear, having watched his life fall completely to ruin, decides at last that all he really wants is to be united with the one child who loves him, even if they die as captives of their enemies.
"Come, let's away to prison," he says to her,
We two alone will sing like birds i' the cage:
When thou dost ask me blessing, I'll kneel down,
And ask of thee forgiveness: so we'll live,
And pray, and sing, and tell old tales, and laugh
At gilded butterflies, and hear poor rogues
Talk of court news; and we'll talk with them too,
Who loses and who wins; who's in, who's out;
And take upon's the mystery of things,
As if we were God's spies: and we'll wear out,
In a wall'd prison, packs and sects of great ones,
That ebb and flow by the moon.
Although it didn't end well for them, I hope being one of God's spies ends better for us.