Tuesday, March 21, 2006

He is shocked, SHOCKED! We Are Not...

For some bizarre, unspoken reason George W. Bush was shocked, shocked, to learn that his friend and cronie, Claude Allen had been scamming Target stores to the tune of more than $5,000.

For the life of me, I can't figure out why Bush is surprised at all. One of the most unusual characteristics of this administration is the manner in which it has manipulated and exploited Christianity for its selfish, often murderous ends.

To be frank, I really can't discern which mindset we're dealing with here.

On the one hand I suspect that many Radical Right Christians aren't even Christians at all, that they have merely taken a violent, death-obsessed, reactionary agenda and appended the name of Jesus Christ to it for political expediency. In which case we're talking about blatant duplicity, perhaps even sociopathy.

This wouldn't be the first time that a far right group had exploited the name of Christ Jesus to achieve a very anti-christian objective. We've seen it before. Televangelist con men who were caught using prostitutes and skimming money out of their ministries as they lived very non-Christian life styles; sexual sadists who tortured supposed witches to obtain confessions; leaders who use the word of God to justify everything from torture to war crimes.

But there's an alternative theory which I find equally compelling, and to be frank, just a little more frightening.

What if, during the course of their spiritual journey, the Radical Right Christians not only convinced themselves that they were doing God's work, but convinced themselves that they were beyond concepts of good and evil? Suppose--just suppose--that their spirituality devolved to the point where they believed that they were so pure, and so holy that they could do anything and it would still be acceptable in the eyes of their angry, vengeful God? In other words, they are only doing what God would do if God only knew what was going on down here.

Those of you who have read our posts here on The Coalition know that this phrase is a favorite with my son Brandon and my best friend, Advocate 1; we use on a regular basis, but suppose for a moment, that it is true. Suppose, for a moment that they really do believe that the Deity sits up and night to admire them. Suppose that they really do believe that the ends will justify the means and that God will look upon them with loving, forgiving eyes because they were doing his will.

Would this not make them as dangerous as any group of fascists, or communists, or Islamicists that the world has ever seen?

Granted, the Radical Right Christians have yet to crash three airliners into three strategic targets, but like their Islamic counterparts, Al Qaeda and the Taliban, they are apparently willing to bend and distort the teachings of their own faith as they attempt to impose that faith on others. And if you want to look at the agendas involved, philosophically Al Qaeda and the Taliban and the Radical Christian Right have a great deal in common.

*Both believe that women should be submissive and obedient to men .

*Both are virulently opposed to the idea of gay rights

*Both are anti-choice

*Both would like to see Republics (i.e. Theocracies) established in the name of their respective deities.

*Both believe that the right to govern stems from God, not from the people, that God alone should rule.

*Both are xenophobic, viewing "outsiders" with distrust and often hate. Dissenters are consdiered evil, demonic or subhuman.

*Both believe strongly in the death penalty

*Both are unforgiving and rigid, insisting on only one interpretation of the holy text--their own--as the one and only true version

The only differences are in their methodologies. While radical Islamicists are content to use both, politics and the ballot box to create their repressive Islamic Republics, the Radical Christian Right is content to use the power of Jesus-coated politics to establish a Christian Republic here in the United States. Beyond that the final objective seems to be the same: theocracies in which a very narrow interpretation of a given holy text will serve as the governing document, with nonbelievers delegated to second class citizenship or worse. Read persecution.

With a mindset like that should we really be surprised when people like Mr. Allen walk into a Target store, purchase home entertainment equipment, take the item to the car, and then go back to the store with the recipt in hand so that he can swipe the same item off the shelf and get a refund?

Probably not.

Should we be surprised by the fact that the same anti-choice fanatic, the same indivdiaul who refered to gays and lesbians as "queers," and who imposed strict regiments of abstience only, should prove to be an over-glorified shop-lifter?

Of course not.

Pride and arrogance are a part of the general mindset, the overall pathology, and when it comes to Bush and his crime family, they seem to have taken those characteristics to the ultimate extreme. We've all seen how this administration can twist the truth; how it distorts language; how it can kill civilians (women and children included) and send young soldiers to die in a foreign occupation without so much as a single, solitary glimmer of conscience.

Bush and his toadies have reached the point where questions of good and evil no longer matter. They themselves are beyond good and evil. They are doing The Lord's work and The Lord will sanction any abuse or violation of the holy text so long as those violations achieve the Lord's end.

Of course it could just be that the American Taliban lacks anything which even resembles a conscience--in which case we're dealing with religious inspired sociopathy. In either case I am no longer surprised by anything this administration says or does.

Embarassed by them, yes.

Disgusted with them, certainly.

Angered, of course.

But surprised? Not for a minute.


Eli Blake said...

The bottom line is this:

Given the similarities in outlook between the two, can we even TRUST conservatives to lead the fight against al-Qaeda? Maybe the reason they haven't caught bin Laden yet is that truth be told, the White House doesn't WANT him dead. Besides how much he agrees with their social agenda on, and the fact that he gives them an ideal excuse every time they want to spend more on the military or invade another country, consider the following as evidence that the White House really does not want bin Laden dead or al-Qaeda dismantled:

1. when they had him surrounded at Tora Bora, they outsourced the job of actually going in and getting him to Afghan soldiers whose loyalty was to whoever was bribing them at the time. If they'd sent in the U.S. marines, they might have actually caught him.

2. After not very many months, the White House put the Afghan war on the back burner and shifted their focus to a country a thousand miles away where at the time, there was very little al-Qaeda presence. And then we removed a dictator who had kept a tight lid on them.

3. Since invading Iraq, we've handed al-Qaeda all sorts of recruiting tools, and in fact Iraq itself is now a prime recruiting/training ground for them.

4. In 1999, six months after the African embassy bombings, the leaders of the United Arab Emirates entertained bin Laden as a dinner guest at their hunting camp in Afghanistan, as described in the report by the 9/11 commission. The recent Dubai ports deal makes it clear that the White House may not see bin Laden as such a bogeyman as the rest of us do. They just can say so openly.

Advocate1 said...

Oddly enough there are "theories" flying around which say that bin Laden is ALREADY dead and that the videos we have been seeing are manufactured to keep the level of fear at an acceptable (i.e. exploitable) level. Personally I suspect this is another conspiracy theory, but all in all I have to agree with you Eli. A living Bin Laden is the best thing Bush has going for him--for the reasons we have suggested above.

Kelli said...

They really do believe they are without sin--which probably explains why they are so willing to throw the first stone--every time