Friday, April 28, 2006

They Just Keep Getting Loonier and Loonier

It seems as if the Radical Christian Right has yet to hit rock bottom. You no sooner think it has descended to the ultimate level of moral depravity but what it finds new and increasingly vulgar ways to surprise mainstream America.

Where shall I begin?

A few weeks ago, we learned that the "Reverend" Fred Phelps of the Westboro Baptist Church had decided to change tactics. Instead of harassing families at dead soldiers' funerals he and his depraved cult of hate mongers will now protest outside veterans health facilities with signs condemning wounded disabled veterans. For those of you who aren't familiar with Mister Phelps and his over-glorified cult, this is the group of roving paranoiacs who travel around the country protesting at the funerals of slain American soldiers because Phelps and his ilk are convinced that God is punishing the United States because of its pro homosexual agenda. Not content to harass grieving family members, Mister Phelps has now turned his attention to wounded war veterans, claiming that their injuries are a punishment from God because of--you guessed it--America's tolerance for homosexuality.

As if that weren't bad enough, we now have the "Reverend" Becky Fisher at the "Kids on Fire" Summer Bible Camp" in Devil's Lake, North Dakota. Just in case you haven't heard of this over-glorified cult, this is a right wing indoctrination where little children are brainwashed into towing the Evangelical Political Right party line. During the course of the summer these poor kids are taught the following half-baked lessons in religious savagery and historical revision.


  • Christians must become as brutal and fanatical as the crazy, right wing Islamicists against who we are currently waging a war against terror.
  • Democracy is set up to destroy itself because it offers equality to people of all faiths, a belief which flies in the face of the theocratic cult leaders who believe that we should be a theocracy in which the Lord God--or rather the Lord God's chosen, right wing theocrats--will reign supreme.
  • There is no wall between church and state; the Founding Fathers believed that if we didn't establish a so called "Christian Republic" (read" ultra-fundamentalist theocracy") that God would destroy our country.
  • The Rapture is nigh, and that George W. Bush is anointed to initiate that Rapture.
  • If Harry Potter were a real person he should be executed according to Old Testament teaching because he is a Warlock. (Get a grip people. Harry Potter is a work of fiction--rather Fisher's theology which sounds as if it were composed by a Puritan witch hunter on steroids.

And to make the whole experience even more frightening, the "Kids on Fire" Summer Camp (AKA Jesus Camp) features exercises in which the children wear camouflage fatigues and face paint while they brandish sticks as if those sticks were weapons. Moreover, these kids have been isolated from the society at large, most of them have never set foot in a public school, and they have been raised to believe--quite literally it appears--as if they are the next generation of right wing fanatics in the Radical "Christian" attempt to shred the Constitution and overthrow the United States government. (I guess one might say "Kids on Fire" is a euphemism for "The Bil of Rights on Fire."

But then again, you just have to remember--the Reverends anti-American indoctrination center is located near Devil's Lake North Dakota.

And that should tell us a lot.



DIALOGUE BETWEEN THE BEAST AND THE RELIGIOUS FUNDAMENTALIST

(Forward: This was one of my earliest works, which was inspired by a certain fundie who proselytize to me on the train many years ago, when I was still toiling and struggling for a miserable diploma in Mechanical Engineering.)

SEP,11, 2001
: Two airliners clashed into the twin towers of the New York World Trade Center Another airliner clashed into the Pentagon, and yet another clashed Pennsylvania. The result: 3030 dead, 2337 injured. Welcome to the ‘beautiful’ world of religious fundamentalism.

Since the advent of modern civilization, Man has always harbour an insane need to wage wars. The need for territorial domination and the insane need to instill fear and the power of death unto the meek and defeated has, for the longest time, been the driving force behind such war-related atrocities.

Religious violence, on the other hand, hardly existed before the arrival of Judaism, considered the oldest existing monotheistic religion in the world. Both Christianity and Islam were spawned from Judaism. While the birth of Christianity brought forth anti-semitism, the rise of Islam heralded the beginnings of several wars between Muslim and the Christian armies. These wars, better known as the Crusades in the Middle East, killed, maimed and devastated the lives of millions of people in the Middle Eastern regions throughout a span of several centuries. The toll on human life and suffering was unfathomable, and all these was done in the name of religion.

Even though the brutal nature of religions may or may not have originated from the founders themselves, all too often religious fundamentalists harbor crazy, stubborn ideals of bigotry and ego that renders them incapable of exercising tolerance towards other religions or creeds.

The extremist nature of fundamentalism brings about extreme actions from certain sections of the faithful flock. Some will resort to violence, believing that bestowing death to their God’s enemies will bring them heavenly rewards in their afterlives. Others feel the compelling urge to convert others who do not share their beliefs and customs, often in a rude and sometimes unforgiving manner, thinking that they are doing these “infidels” a huge favor. These people call themselves fundamentalists; they adhere to a very strict interpretation of their religious scriptures. Fundamentalists take great pride in following their religious scriptures, often down to the very letter. Depending on the severity/degree of their faiths, they will sacrifice and give up just about everything and do anything to propagate their interpretation of their specific religions. The term “infidel” is a label coined by fundamentalists on people who do not share their creed.

I have, on several occasions, been approached by fundamentalists who peddle their religion everywhere; from public schools and institutions to public transportation vehicles. They are usually Christians who believe that by converting infidels such as myself, I will thus join their “flock” and be re-united with their “shepherd” in heaven, when I am finally six feet under.

While they can be pretty irritating at times, there are times I find myself in a better mood to hold some kind of meaningful conversation with them. Although I do resent their hard-selling approach of “rewards in heaven”, from certain aspects I do admire them for being bold enough to approach complete strangers and sharing their religions with them. It is not a easy thing to do, believe you me. I was a salesman for two weeks, and I quitted because approaching strangers is not something one can adjust to easily.

The following dialog is a conversation between myself and a fundamentalist who approached me while I was traveling on the train from my home to school. The fundamentalist in question is a Christian, but for sentiment’s sake, I shall change his God’s name to Bob the Raingod, and his religion, Bobbism.

SCENE: Beast is traveling on a Mass Rapid Transit train; he’s listening in to his disc-man, which happens to be playing the latest songs from Eminem, when a fundie (short for fundamentalist) from the Bobbist Church approaches him. Beast’s got time to wild away, and he reckons he can do with some unsolicited entertainment, which goes like this………)

Fundie (Cheerfully): Good morning, Sir, how is your day?

Beast (looks around, removes the eyepiece connected to the disc-man, and realizes fundie is talking to no one but himself, and takes off earphone): Erm, you talking to me, dude?

Fundie: Yes sir, how is your day?

Beast (shrugs shoulders): Jeez, its 0630 hours, the day’s not even started yet, as far as I am concerned. Is there anything I can do for you?

Fundie (looks at watch, laughs): Yes, its true. Its very early indeed. Oops, I am sorry, I forgot to introduce myself; my name’s Paul, how should I address you?

Beast: You can address me as Beast. It is my pen name. I write articles for an independent magazine, and I sign off as The Beast.

Fundie (Surprised): You are a writer? That’s great!

Beast: I am but a amateur writer, my genre being a mix of humor and satire.

Fundie (Smiles): You must be a very smart guy.

Beast (Laughs): That’s very flattering, Paul, but I will accept it. Thank you.

Fundie: That’s good, we are off on a good start here. What is your religion, by the way?

Beast (Shrugs): I am an atheist. I subscribe to no religion.

Fundie (looks surprised): That can’t be, most people I know here have religions.

Beast (Gives a “Oh not again“ look): Oh well, you said “most". I happen to be the odd one out. But if you must know, the official religion of choice as stated in my identification card states Buddhism, and that was actually made official by my parents, who happen to be Taoists.

Fundie: I see, do you believe in a true and Living God?

Beast (Shakes head): No, I just said I am an atheist. An atheist is a person who does not subscribe to any deity, or any other supernatural beings that do not have the seal of proof. Scientific proof, to be more specific.

Fundie (Apologetic look on his face): I am so sorry to hear………

Beast (Interrupts): Sorry? Why the need to feel sympathetic towards my stance? Its not as if I am handicapped or financially bankrupt; neither have I suffered any grave misfortune. (Laughs) Not at the moment, anyway.

Fundie: I do not mean it in an offending way. I just feel sad when someone says he or she does not believe and know the True and Living God.

Beast (laughs): I think I am beginning to comprehend what you are trying to hit on here. Are you trying to tell me you have special access to some extraordinary, exclusive deity?

Fundie: Not a mere deity, but a True and Living God.

Beast: Ok. So who is this “True and Living God” which you claim to have access to? Do you possess any empirical evidence of such a deity?

Fundie: Have you ever heard of Bob the Raingod, or followers of the Bobbist Church?

Beast (laughs): Yes so I have heard. So what does this Bob do, bring forth the rains and floods?

Fundie (Slightly unnerved by Beast’s unnatural laughter): Well, yes and no. Yes, he does bring rain, but he is not solely limited to one ability. More than that, he is the Creator of the Universe, the planets, and all that is around us, including ourselves. All creation is proof of his existence.

Beast: Ok, perhaps so, but what else did he do? Simply create everything and leave his creations to their own devices?

Fundie (Gesticulates wildly): No, Bob will never abandon us! For he gave us the greatest love of all! He sent his only begotten son, Bob Junior, to Earth to live a mortal’s life. He cured the sick, rose the dead, and performed many miracles. He was innocent of all crimes, but he chose to die for our sins. Despite his powers, he chose to be persecuted by his very own people, and through his actions our sins are all but forgiven! Pray, tell me, what greater love is there, save the sacrifice of one‘s beloved son? Besides, Bob is all powerful, all loving and all knowing. He is the Alpha and the Omega. The Beginning, and The End.

Beast: I am sorry for interrupting your little soap opera, but I have a most serious question, with regards to your little tale.

Fundie (Looking pleased): That’s fine by me, really. It is good for you to ask questions. And good for me to know that you are listening and learning.

Beast (smiles): Thanks, but you said Bob was the only True and Living God?

Fundie: Yes I did say that.

Beast: But now Bob has a son, Bob the junior?

Fundie: Yes, he does.

Beast: Now this Bob has a son. So does that not make two deities?

Fundie: Ok, I see what you mean. Bob the Raingod is actually a godhood consisting of 3 Godheads: Bob the Father, Bob the Son and Bob the Holy Spirit. All three join together to form the Holy Trinity.

Beast (Looking slightly incredulous). Now wait a minute! I don’t think I am capable of grasping the very nature of your Gods! First you come to me, sharing some God, then you have two, and now you have Three! How many gods have you left out of the picture?

Fundie: I know it sounds incredible at first……

Beast: Not incredible. Simply illogical and ridiculous.

Fundie: It is one Godhood, with 3 God-heads.

Beast: (Laughs)

Fundie (uncomfortable, slightly agitated): May I know what it is you are laughing at?

Beast (tries real hard to stop): Pardon me, I am sorry. But from what you are telling me, I can give you three distinct possibilities.

Fundie: Really? Pray, tell me.

Beast: Option one: You are telling me a tale which you yourself cannot even begin to grasp. In short, you are either hallucinating, or you are still suffering from a hangover from last night‘s drinking bilge.
Option 2: Your God is actually a god with a certain mental disorder, commonly and medically known as “multiple-personality disorder“. Mental patients with this ailment suffer from multiple personalities, and will exhibit completely different personalities from time to time. In simple layman’s terms, it is akin to talking to three different persons, even if you are talking to one.
Option 3: There are actually 3 gods, all equally powerful. Kind of like an Alliance, really.

Fundie (Displeased look on face): Am I detecting a hint of blasphemy here?

Beast: I apologize for sounding a little offending here. I don’t mean to be rude though. I just analyze whatever information you have provided me with so far, that is all.

Fundie ( a little sullen now): Well, let me warn you that blasphemy against Bob the Raingod will cause you to incur his wrath, and I seriously suggest you not to babble such blasphemous remarks in future.

Beast: I think you have utterly misunderstood me. Allow me to rephrase my stance here: I am apologizing to you, because I feel that I may have unintentionally offended you in some way. I am not apologizing to your god, or gods (rolls eyes in disbelief), simply because I do not think he, or they, exist.

Fundie: It is “he ". One God. Not “they”.

Beast (throws arms in the air): Whatever.

Fundie (Shakes head): This is not very good. You know what the Bobbism scripture says? “Only a fool says there is no God.” And the Bobbism Scriptures is the best proof bestowed upon Man by Bob the Raingod, to guide us on the road to salvation.

Beast: May I ask you, my good Paul: Are the scriptures you just mentioned written by man, or Bob the Raingod?

Fundie: The scriptures were written by honorable prophets about two thousand years ago; they wrote what Bob inspired them to.

Beast: Ah… so the scriptures were written by men, not deities, is that so?

Fundie: Yes, that’s true, but they were divinely inspired.

Beast: Whatever their alleged divine sources, the fact remains, that these scriptures were written by men, the tales and rules were written in a time and age when science wasn’t as advanced as today, and passed down through numerous hands and handwritten transcripts. Errors and discrepancies caused by numerous translations notwithstanding, these laws may have worked very well at the time it was scribbled, but not so now, nearly two thousand years later. Two thousand years is an awfully long time, Paul. Whatever is written then may have suited their age and time, but not ours.

Fundie: That’s not true! Many of the rules written in the Bobbist scriptures are still relevant today, such as the golden rule, “Thou shalt not kill”. Without such laws, evil shall triumph over good.

Beast: Such rules have existed long before Bobbism took root. Besides, good and evil are shifting values. What is defined as good today, may be deemed evil tomorrow, and vice versa.

Fundie: Oh? Are you saying then, that the values of good and evil are never consistent? I think not.

Beast (Laughs): Absolute morals cannot be applied consistently, my friend. Perceptions change with every era. Surely you do know that a little over a century ago, slavery was a norm in the United States and Europe? Now, slavery is viewed as a abomination unto itself. A few decades ago apartheid was law, a law sanctioned by the white minority to segregate themselves from the blacks in the USA and South Africa. Nowadays it is a common view that apartheid has left a indelible black mark in world history.

Fundie: That is true. But crimes, such as rape & murder, as written in the Bobbist scriptures are still relevant today. Would you agree?

Beast: Such laws, being secular in nature, cannot be credited to the Bobbist religion itself, as they existed in a time that preceded as far back as the ancient Greek civilization, way before the first Bobbist scripture was ever penned. Certain laws inherited from ancient civilizations still apply, due to their well-proven ability to maintain and preserve civilization. The scriptures may have harped about certain common laws which have long been used and regarded as norms in other civilizations, but it doesn’t mean we should credit the scripture writers for their ingenuity in creating such wise, secular laws. Rather, there are other redundant, moral rules, spawned by such religious writers, which hold no intrinsic value to modern society.

Fundie: Such as?

Beast: Such as rules, or laws, subjugating the rights of women, the harboring and treatment of slaves, laws prohibiting certain consensual, sexual acts; and laws prohibiting the general population from worshiping other gods other than those stated in the scriptures, just to name a few.

Fundie (Disappointed): So you disagree that such laws, as mentioned by you, are irrelevant with regards to the morals of our nation, or the world in general?

Beast (Laughs): Such unnecessary trivialities are but obstacles to a free and modern world. No one, with the exception of religious fundamentalists and terrorists, will ever want to live under the shroud of such restrictive and ill-advised laws. Besides, there is no way a modern society can enforce a law on, say, sexual preferences, without incurring the wrath and ridicule of the general public.

Fundie (Annoyed): You seem very hell-bent on discrediting Bob.

Beast (Gives a innocent, “Not me, its him!” look): That’s not my intention, my good Paul. I am merely stating facts.

Fundie: So you discredit my faith. So what proof do you have of your faith?

Beast: Didn’t I mention earlier I have no faith?

Fundie: Atheism is a faith. After all, it requires more faith to believe there is no god than there is a god.

Beast: Allow me to explain atheism in simple terms. Do you believe in fairies?

Fundie: No, of course not. That’s a pagan belief, is it not?

Beast: That’s beside the point. Why do you not believe in fairies?

Fundie: Because I jolly well know they do not exist.

Beast: I see. What if I say they did?

Fundie: Then I think you are either insane, or demon possessed.

Beast (Laughs): Really. What if I insist that fairies exist, despite your ardent objection of such deities ?

Fundie: Then you must prove to me that fairies exist.

Beast: What if I say fairies exist, that everything in existence is created by fairies, and that the playboy magazine was written by fairy-inspired authors, and that the monthly publications of Playboy magazines is a irrefutable proof of their existence, and your disbelief in fairies actually requires more faith than a belief in fairies?

(By this time the fundie knew that he had been outsmarted and outwitted by a very calm Beast, which somehow is very contradicting to the conventional depiction of a Beast as a wild, savage being.)

Fundie (looking dejected): I sense a lot of hostility from you towards Bob the Raingod.

Beast(Wide-eyed amazement): When on Earth have I shown my disenchantment or hostility towards Bob?

Fundie (Fuming): You blaspheme him time and time again, even to the extent of comparing him to fairies.

Beast: I think you are too sensitive.

Fundie: I think you are being too insensitive.

Beast (Laughs): I am sorry to know that your God is so emotionally fragile. Let us both stop accusing each other for the moment. Ok?

(At this point, the fundie seemed to be divinely inspired. He begins to brighten up, seemingly hell-bent on winning this theological battle with yours truly, a.k.a The Beast)

Fundie: So, in your opinion, God does not exist. How then, were you conceived, save by the hand of an All-knowing, All-almighty God?

Beast: I was conceived and borne of my mothers’ womb.

Fundie: And by whose hands were you placed into your mother’s womb?

Beast (Laughs hard): Jeez, do you suppose that I should give you a biological discourse on sex and pregnancy? (Laughs again) I don’t think so. Not on this train.

Fundie (Laughs, rather half-heartedly): Ok, that wasn’t what I expected from you. Let me rephrase the question: Who exactly was the cause of everything that exists, from the mega-sized galaxies, to the tiniest of microbes?

Beast: With regards to the universe and the galaxies, my answer would be that of the Big Bang. As with regards to life on Earth, evolution is the driving force behind all life on Earth.

Fundie (Stunned, as if he had been hit by a rock): Ok, so you believe Man evolved from Monkeys? Or that our ancestors were no better than hairy apes?

Beast (Smiles): From your very questions I suspect that you didn’t do well in your biological classes in school.

Fundie (Disgusted): Oh, we were taught in school we evolved from apes.

Beast: Either your biological teacher screwed you up, or you remembered it wrong. We did not evolve from apes. Rather, man and ape share a common ancestor.

Fundie (Skeptical look): Oh? Where’s the proof?

Beast: It is all there in the museums. Check it out.

Fundie: Don’t you know that there were many hoaxes found amongst these so-called “Pre-historic homo skeletons”?

Beast: So there was. But many species have been deemed authentic down the years, like the “Java Man” and the “Peking Man” fossils. If you are mentioning about fake fossils, such as the “Piltdown Man”, those fake fossils were actually exposed by credible scientists themselves, hence lending credence to the astute honesty and integrity of the scientific community.

Fundie: So you think man and ape are closely related?

Beast: Very close, genetically speaking our genes share more than 99% similarity.

Fundie: So science teaches that, huh? That we are actually no better than apes?

Beast: That’s your opinion, my friend.

Fundie (Looks imploringly. Poor dude, maybe he hasn‘t evolved, yet): Look at us, Beast. How can you compare us to apes?

Beast: Are you trying to imply that Apes are too stupid to be held in comparison to Man?

Fundie: Of course! We are definitely far more superior to mere apes! In fact, our intelligence surpluses that of all animal species on Earth. We were created in the image of Bob; we were gifted with intelligence to make decisions, to perceive good and evil. Man has the ability of speech to convey information and ideas, which animals are incapable of. Most important of all, we have been blessed with everlasting souls, hence our emotions and conscience. Animals do not possess such an impressive array of gifts from the most divine Bob. Most importantly, Bob gave us free will……

Beast (Interrupts): Ok, wait a minute. You are suggesting that :
One: Man is the only species on Earth blessed with intelligence, and that the rest of the Animal Kingdom exist on dull-witted brains or simply no brains at all, which means that they are incapable of intelligent actions or participate in decision making.
Two: Since you claim animals have no souls, it naturally equates to a definite absence of emotions and conscience.
Three: You are also implying that Man inherits supreme exclusivity to Bob the Raingod on the basis of the existence of our eternal souls. Right?

Fundie: Animals are sent by Bob our Lord to serve us. That is the reason why we are allowed to eat animals, without incurring the wrath of our Lord.

Beast (Laughs): I shall convey your opinions to the local animal rights groups. They will probably skin you alive.

Fundie (Laughs): I haven’t met any of them, but anyway, almost everyone eats meat, right?

Beast (Half-hearted attempt to stop laughing): That’s true. I think we are sidetracking a little here. So, the point is, am I right to assume that you believe that animals are just callous, stupid and dumb, and that we deserve divine favors on the basis of intelligence and the alleged existence of souls, traits which animals do not possess, according to you that is?

Fundie (Pauses for a while): Yes. That would be right.

Beast: Do you realize that most animals actually have brains in the first place?

Fundie: Yes they do.

Beast: So, are you saying that they never use their brains for anything else save eating, sleeping, defecating and copulating?

Fundie: You are correct.

Beast: How do you explain the ability of animals to hunt in groups? Lions, for instance, tend to form social groups known as prides. There exists a social hierarchy in every lion pride, and a leader from each pride is responsible for leading the pride during their hunts, and protects the pride from external threats. By hunting in groups, lion prides have the highest success rates amongst the Big Cats in terms of hunt-to-kill ratio. Elephants, too, have their social herds, and their mental faculties are almost on par with Man’s. There is documentary evidence of elephants actually mourning the deaths of their family members and relatives. So-called dumb animals, or animals of a less order, have been known to exhibit emotions anyway; I used to keep pet hamsters; and I can attest to the fact that even these “lesser” animals exhibit unique character traits. So how does that say of your charge that animals can’t feel, and hence do not have souls?

Fundie: But we can worship God, but they can’t, so that makes a difference.

Beast: Ah, so you are saying, the animals have feelings, souls, and intelligence, but they can’t worship gods. Is that another change in your stance again?

Fundie (Very flustered): I think you are trying to twist my words here.

Beast: I am not. I am just commenting on what you say, and then attempting to prove you wrong, that is all.

Fundie (Mildly frustrated): Ok, let’s put it this way. Animals do have intelligence; they do have emotions, but they have no souls, and when they die they simply perish. And the important issue being, that they do not have the ability to know the true and living god.

Beast: So now your claim would be that, our ability to worship a powerful God, is the sole reason why we should be superior to the animals?

Fundie (Pauses, thinks, before answering): Uh huh…………

Beast: I shall have to refute you on this. Animals do worship, actually, but in a far more subtle manner.

Fundie: Really? How so?

Beast: In the context of the animal kingdom, God would be a mere alpha male in the herd. This phenomenon can actually be observed in gorilla territory.

Fundie (Exasperated now): This is outrageous! You compare our Supreme God to a gorilla alpha male?

Beast (Shrugs): Well, our need to worship god is actually a throw-back to our ancient prehistoric ancestors. Since gorillas and man are, generally speaking, genetically related, it is safe to say that we do share similar traits. The worship of gods is quite akin to the animals who serve and look up to their alpha males for leadership.

Fundie (Angrily): This is blasphemy! I command you to stop this nonsense now, once and for all!

Beast (Fed-up, raises his beastly voice): Now don’t try to get personal on me, pal. If you wish to mix science with superstition, I think you have been barking up the wrong tree. These are facts that have been substantiated by reputed scientists, and unless you can find a better way to prove otherwise I suggest you keep quiet with regards to this issue.

Fundie: Don’t you see? Evolution is but mere theory! Not facts, but theory! Even the scientists themselves cannot make up their minds with regards to how evolution was supposed to happen!

Beast: So is gravity, my friend. The Theory of Gravity. Does gravity exist? No? Then you might as well float into the outer edges of space and perish. When Science accords a scientific idea as Theory, it simply means there is probably more than one way to explain a phenomenon. Take light, for example, it inherits the characteristics of both a wave and a particle. Evolution is already a fact; there are tons of fossils and carbon-dating records to indicate that evolution had taken place, and is still taking place today. The stuff scientists debate on are usually the way evolution has proceeded, not on grounds of validity as you have claimed.

( At this point it has become clear that he was not going to gain even an inch of ground with this preaching-turned-debate-turned-sour debacle. He begins to launch a religious tirade based on superstition and fear. It really indicates the desperation he feels, perhaps out of real concern that I may somehow be condemned to the fiery pits of hell.)

Fundie: Beast, my dear brother, it is my deepest wish, and that of God, that you repent of your sins and commit yourself to Bob the Raingod.

Beast (sensing a u-turn in the debate, laughs): So, you can’t outwit me, and now you are resorting to a religious conversion?

Fundie (Gives a desperate, listen-to-me look): I fear for your soul, my dear brother. Confess your sins to Bob and be forgiven! Otherwise you will be condemned to hell forever and ever. Do you truly wish to be tormented for eternity?

Beast (Laughs): I thought you mentioned earlier that Bob is a loving God?

Fundie: Indeed he is. He is an all-loving God.

Beast: And if that be so, why the need for hell? To roast chickens for an eternal barbecue for human souls? If your God loves me, why send me to burn for eternity in the fiery pits of hell?

Fundie: Because you are unrepentant of your sins, Bob has no choice but to send you to hell, as you so deserve.

Beast: If that is so, I am sure there are many non-believers of your religious creed, or infidels in your opinion, who shall fry with me Down Under. (Laughs) And I am not even talking about Australia, mind you!

Fundie (Getting all worked up): I pray that you do not suffer their fate! Repent and be saved!

Beast: Don’t make it sound like Armageddon, Paul. Bobbism is but a mere belief system, and if I am hell bound for not subscribing to your God or Gods, then your God, or gods, is no better than a tyrant.

Fundie (Shakes head, looks or fakes as if he is about to cry): Ok, so be it then, its your choice. If you die and meet Bob the Raingod, don’t say you were not told. You have been warned.

Beast: To each his own. Truly, Bobbism, or any other religion for the matter, is not my cup of tea. (Train reaches destination, door opens) Oops, time does fly, Paul! I have reached my destination already! That’s it, my friend. I am off. Cheer up, brother! It is not the end of the world! (Gives a huge smile)

(At this point of time the train has reached Beast’s point of destination. He shakes fundie’s hands, walks off and feels relieved that the final emotional discussion had been a short one. Can’t stand grown-up men crying. Its just too crappy. Tsk tsk)

BELATED GREETINGS FROM AN APOLOGETIC BEAST

Ladies and Gentlemen:

First of all, many thanks to Brandon, who has taken the trouble to invite me to this highly esteemed political blog.

A little introduction about myself: My name is Roy, but people usually address me via my pen name, THE BEAST. I am a 27 yr old atheist from the island nation of Singapore, and while I am an avid George Bush wacker, politics is something I love to write about, atheism being a close second behind my list of favorite topics.

Currently, I have been taking a short break from writing on my blogs, as I have been guest-writing in another blog of local (Singaporean) origin, during the span of this upcoming election campaign. Generally, I have made tacit, sometimes provocative remarks on the state of affairs here in Singapore.

If there are any Americans out there who are interested to know the going-ons of our elusive island-nation, check out these links below. Enjoy.


1. DANGLING THE UPGRADING CARROT: SM GOH AIMS TO WOO POTONG PASIR VOTERS

2. BEWARE, SINGAPORE BLOGGERS: WITCH-HUNT AHEAD

3. A TALE OF FISHBALLS

4. POLITICAL EXCITEMENT, OR POLITICAL APATHY?

5. SINGAPORE: THE GULAG HUB?

6. NKF REVISITED: HEAR NO EVIL, SPEAK NO EVIL

7. LAMENTATIONS OF THE BEAST

So there you have it, in a nutshell. Interested readers may want to check up on more writings by the blog owner at "USELESS RANTINGS OF A FEW DISGRUNTLED SINGAPOREANS".

After the Elections are over after the 6th of May, I shall resume my usual blogging activities. Stay tuned.

Regards
The Beast

Thursday, April 27, 2006

MAYBE LOGIC AND REASON ARE BETTER ALTERNATIVES AFTER ALL

"This calls for wisdom. Let him who has understanding reckon the number of the beast, for it is a human number, it is the number 666." Revelation 13:18

This gets a little scary, and it probably sounds a little ignorant and superstitious, but there are times when you just have to throw logic and reason to the wind and act on instinct. Consider this. Did you know that when you work the Decider's numerology chart the number six appears in at least three important situations?

1) When you calculate the numerical value of the letters in GEORGE WALKER BUSH they reveal the self-declared Decider as a SIX on a numerology chart? According to some numerology experts the number six indicates morality, creativity, domesticity, harmony, and trust. But according to the Book of Revelations, it is the number of the Beast. And there's more.

2) When you calculate the value of the Decider's birthday (July 6, 1946) this too boils down to a six!

3) And when you calculate the value of January 20, 2001, the date of W's Inaugural address, this too amounts to a bone chilling six!

Do the math! On a standard numerology chart. the letters in the English alphabet have the following values: A, J, and S =1; B, K, and T = 2; C, L, and U = 3; D, M, and V = 4; E, N, and W = 5; F, O, and X = 6; G, P, and W = 7; H, Q, and Z = 8; and I and R = 9.

The name GEORGE WALKER BUSH adds up like this:

7+5+6+9+7+5+5+1+3+2+5+9+2+3+1+8 = 78; 7+8 = 15; 1+5 = 6! That's right! George Bush is a Six!

Now let's look at the dates The months of the year have the following numerical values: January and October = 1; February and November = 2; March and December = 3; April + 4, May = 5, June = 6; July =7; August = 8 and September = 9.

This is the Decider's birthday:

7+ 6+1+9+4+6 = 33; 3=3 = 6. Another Six.

And this it the date of his first Inaugural address

1+2+0+2+0+0+1 = 6. Yet another Six!

And I still can't get over the fact that the basic numbers in FOX are (GULP) 666, although one might argue that adding the three sixes together will create 18 which breaks down to nine, but still... The FOX and those three sixes looks a little...suspicious.

And let's not forget what the Bible says about the forces of evil.

"For Such are false apostles, deceitful workmen, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ and no wonder for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. So it is not strange if his servants also disguise themselves as servants of righteousness." 2 Corinthians 11:13-15.

Does this not sound like the insane rantings of the so called Christian Right? The Bible is filled with passages about helping the poor, feeding the hungry and sheltering the homeless. It warns us about the dangers of greed and avarice, of acquiring too much wealth. But what does the right wing embrace? Greed, tax cuts for the wealthy, and an obsessive worship of wealth and power.

The Bible issues repeated warnings against lies and dishonesty. But we have elected (some might say selected) a majority political party which has turned lying and corruption into highly polished art forms. Can you say Delay, Abramoff, and Cunningham?

But then again, it might just be that all of this is a coincidence and that I selected the data to suit a given agenda. Kind of like what the Christian Right has been doing to the Holy Bible and basic Christian theology on a regular basis.

Hmmmmm. Come to think of it, logic and reason may well be better alternatives after all.


Wednesday, April 26, 2006

SNOW APPOINTED ASSISTANT PROPAGANDA MINISTER

SNOW APPOINTED ASSISTANT PROPAGANDA MINISTER

by Brandon Alexander Geraghty-MacKenzie

From the Anal Retentive Press


WASHINGTON DC--After weeks of imbecilic speculation, Pretender George W. Bush finally, finally named Republican pundit, Tony Snow to serve as the Administration's Assistant Propaganda Minister, Speaking at a hastily arrange press conference at the White House, Bush insisted that it was the Pretender's job to hear voices and make decisions, while Snow, acting in his capacity as Administration's front man and official puppet, would handle "whatever distortions, prevarications, and outright lies are necessary to uphold our criminal regime in Washington."

Snow, who had served as a Republican mouthpiece on the FOX (Fools, Oddballs and Xenophobes) Network, exuded a sense of arrogance and satisfaction as the Demander and Thief officially enabled him with the ability to twist the facts as he again misinformed the American people.

"At last we can drop the pretension that the FOX Network is in any way fair and balanced," said Snow. "You have no idea how please I am to work for a dysfunctional administration which is neither fair nor balanced in any way."

White House Chief of Staff, Josh Bolten, who snapped digital photographs of the president's hands throughout the entire press conference, agreed. "Not only is Tony an accomplished prevaricator," said Bolten, "He's a gorgeous piece of beef cake with a pretty face and a body that just won't quit. With a little luck he won't only stick it to the press and the American people--he'll stick it to a 46- year old staffer desperately needs to cure himself of another fetish."

Snow's appointment as the new Assistant Propaganda Minister finally dispels the ludicrous idea that the clearly biased Fox Network is, or ever has been, interested in legitimate journalism. According to Rupert Murdoch, the owner and puppet master behind FOX, "this might be a good time to change our name from FOX to a more descriptive corporate catch phrase. Suggestions include: "Republican State Broadcasting," "Natiional Republican Media," "The GOP Network," "Red State Communications," , and the highly appropriate, "Gotcha Suckers!"

Snow, who insists that the only time he has ever told the truth was when he did so by accident, seemed both, elated and satisfied as he took the official oath of loyalty to the the president, promising to uphold and defend George W. Bush against the law and the United States Constitution. "I solemnly swear, " Snow intoned. "To undermine truth, justice, and the American Way."

Bush concurred, maintaining that both he and Snow would "always tell the truth unless a lie might work better."

True to form, the reporters offered no serous questions, but merely extended their right arms, hands outstretched , in the usual Pavlovian manner.

Monday, April 24, 2006

THE PHONY PERSECUTION OF RIGHT WING CHRISTIANS

By Brandon, Daniel, and Enlightenment

Are you sick and tired of right wing theocrats and reactionary demagogues playing the religion card whenever their brutal policies and beliefs are questioned by the loyal opposition? Have you reached the point where you want to put massive doses of Haldol, Thorazine, and Lithium in our public water systems to cure these Bible-thumping paranoiacs of the delusion that their bastardization of the Christian faith is under attack? Do you feel like retching when corrupt politicians uncork psychotic (some might say sociopathic) double talk about a war on conservative "Christianity" instead of taking personal responsibilities for the illegal and/or unethical activities which created their self-created problems in the first place?

Yeah, I'm getting a little sick and tired of these congenital liars too, and the part that makes me want to vomit the most is their duplicitous rhetoric about the so called persecution of ultra fundamentalists right here in America. I'm sorry, but if these over-Christianized fanatics think that church-state separation is a form of repression, if they truly believe that not being allowed to use the force of the federal government coupled with tax payer funding to proselytize nearly 280 million Americans is a form of religious persecution, then I would humbly suggest that they visit a few areas in the world where religious strife and persecution are every day facts of life. And then after they have seen and experienced real persecution, I would ask them if they still feel that America is a hotbed or anti-religious bigotry.

Of course, that raises a rather sticky question. Just where pray tell (play on words intended) would we send our beloved Bible-thumpers? Regrettably, we can't build a time machine, so the horrors of the Crusades, the Thirty Years Warm the Inquisitions, the Turkish Persecution of the Armenians, the Russian Orthodox pogroms against Jews, and the Nazi Slaughter of 11 million undesirables (including Jews, Gypsies, Slavs, and homosexuals etc) cannot be witnessed first hand. But that doesn't mean that American Christian Supremacists can't vicariously enjoy the chills and thrills of genuine persecution. There are still a number of holocaust survivors who would be more than willing to share first hand their experience in the Nazi death camps. And from what I hear there are plenty of innocent victims--Jews, homosexuals, and Orthodox Christians--who suffered under the Communist Regime in the former Soviet Union. I know, I know, Communism isn't a religion per se, but if our patriotic Bible-thumpers can redefine human secularism as a religion to further their political agenda, I can classify Russian Communism for the same purpose. Soviet style communism and Christianity were both ideological and highly dogmatic; both operated under a hierarchy which promoted ideological purity while discriminating against women, religious dissidents, and homosexuals. And let's not forget the fact that in many ways, the chauvinistic domestic polices and expansionist foreign policies of the Soviet regime were little more than continuations of the same policies which had been enacted under the Tsars, when Russian Orthodoxy was the firmly established state church.

For those who prefer live persecution, I would recommend our latest colony, the war torn vassal state of Iraq, where Shia death squads, with backing from neighboring Iran and tacit approval of the United States military, are prowling the streets of Baghdad, searching for effeminate men, women without veils, western music, and establishments which sell (gasp!) alcohol. And then there's that little problem between the Iraqi Shias and the Iraqi Sunnis who are now blowing each other's Mosques to smithereens. On the other hand, if you're patriotic and aren't so inclined to condemn the budding theocracy that we have established in Iraq, there's plenty of Christian vs. Tribal vs Muslim hostility in war torn Africa, where torture, killing, and genocide can be witnessed on a semi-regular basis. For those who are keen on minor conflicts which might erupt into major conflicts, there's plenty of latent--and at times overt--hatred between the Muslim Pakistanis and the Hindu Indians which occasionally erupts in the targeting of Hindu shrines, and which may--with just a little coaxing--erupt into a regional nuclear conflict. Providing of course our all knowing Decider doesn't decide to launch a nuclear strike in Iran so that he can trigger a general Middle Eastern War in the hope that it will devolve into a global nuclear conflict.

Racists who prefer not to watch third world people committing mass murder in the name of their God or Gods will be happy to know that they can witness religious persecution in Northern Ireland Granted, it hasn't been as bad as it has been in recent years; the crazy IRA and the crazy protestant fundamentalists haven't been living up to their reputations for mutually employed savagery, but for all intents and purposes the Protestant majority has done a fine job at segregating the Catholic minority into poverty infested slums, in essence creating a form of persecution which, while religiously inspired, is expressed in abject poverty for the growing numbers of Northern Irish Catholics.

Those who enjoy their persecution with an Asian flare are encouraged to visit Tibet, where Tibetan Buddhists are repressed by the People's Republic of China. Ditto to certain cults and sects within China's borders.

In other words, the Radical Christian Right hasn't got a a clue as to what real persecution is all about; their phony claims are nothing more than a slap in the face to more decent and more honest people who have experienced genuine horrors. Calling a Scotch Pine a "Holiday Tree" instead of a "Christmas Tree" pales in the face of bombed Mosques and public executions. Preventing a particular faith from flooding the public square and with its particular prayers and symbols cannot compare to the type of genocide that we have seen in Africa. Standing up for church-state separation is not a repressive act against the Radical Christian Right--it is preserving the freedom of religion which allows all faiths to thrive and flourish in the face of ultra-fundamentalist hatred and bigotry.

The Radical Christian Right (which is neither Christian nor right about anything) has expanded the war on American Culture to include a phony claim that Radical Christians are under attack. Translated into the vernacular from the Ultra fundamentalist double speak, anything which prohibits the Ultra Fundamentalist Right from abolishing both, our freedom of religion and the representative government which was created by the framers in 1787,in favor of a fascist-style theocracy in which non Christians, non believers, and dissenting Christians will be treated like second class citizens, represents a "war on conservative Christians." Anything which prevents them from using the power of the federal government to shove their very repressive and very narrow minded interpretation of the King James Bible down the throats of 280 million Americans is considered a form of persecution.

Why if you didn't know better, you'd think that the theocratic bullies and con men who are so determined to overthrow our Constitution, were using a phony claim of persecution as a tactic to persecute real Americans and real Christians who are loyal to the ideals of the Founding Fathers.

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Happy Easter

From the Crew at The Coalition for a Republican-Free America


HAPPY EASTER!!!

They Just Don't Make a Lick of Sense

Easter in the MacKenzie household is a trifle unusual because this all important Christian Holiday often coincides with my deconversion from the Presbyterian faith to atheism. Living in a strongly fundamentalist area of Southeast Wisconsin can be a little on the difficult side when you don't believe in and see no proof for the existence of a higher power, but, by the same token, I have learned to enjoy debating my Christian friends over the existence or nonexistence of God.

During those debates the question almost invariably rears its ignorant head. "How could you give up all that security in exchange for no afterlife." Or, on other occasions, the question is rephrased to inquire why I became an atheist in the first place. For some strange reason my Christian friends--the few who didn't disown me after I renounced their self-contradictory world view--assume incorrectly that it must have been some outside force which prompted me to alter my view of the world, when in fact my initial doubts were created by a series of self contradictions within the Christian paradigm itself.

For some equally strange reason, monotheists are proud of the fact that their God is both, all powerful and all knowing. But when you think twice about this idea you realize that it just doesn't make any sense. If God is both, all powerful and all knowing then he has a hell of a lot to answer for, because it means that we are living under deity which is both, strong enough and wise enough to do something about this demented slaughterhouse of a world that we live in, but who sits by and does virtually nothing. In other words, the belief that God is both, all powerful and all knowing reduces God to a cold-hearted sadist who does nothing while the children in his creation suffer on a daily basis. Of course you could argue that God all knowing but not all powerful, in which case I would counter that I refuse to worship an impotent God. On the other hand, you might argue that God is all powerful but not all knowing, in which case I would tell you that I refuse to worship a stupid God.

Indeed, if you adopt a literal interpretation of the King James Bible, and then look at that creation myth from a slightly different angle--same facts but a different interpretation--you realize that the Lord Gos is a brutal, sadistic butcher who is little better, or perhaps even worse than the mythical devil that we have all been raised to hate and fear.

I have yet to hear a satisfactory explanation as to WHY God created the earth and its living things--including humans--in the first place. If God is perfect then why in the hell would he even WANT to risk disturbing perfection by creating something. This raises a an interesting question. Could it have been that things weren't as perfect as we had been led to believe? If God is the author of everything then are we not to assume that he was the author of Satan, his favorite angel who rebelled against him and who was cast out of Heaven? What went wrong? Did God create an imperfect angel, or were there problems in Heaven against which Satan rebelled? Either way it seems as if the Lord God made a huge mistake, but isn't honest enough nor moral enough to own that mistake.

Still blistering from his first error, the Lord God then decided that he would create the Earth and it's many life forms. That was a bright idea. Assuming that you are all familiar with the TWO creation myths which occur in Genesis Chapters 1 and 2, it appears as if the Lord God was determined to mess up again.

In Genesis Chapter 1, he creates man and woman together. The first chapter says nothing about Adam and Eve, it says nothing about a mist or Adam going to sleep, or the Lord God borrowing a rib from his first-created. It specifically says: "And God said, Let us make man in our own image after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the foul of the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God blessed them and God said unto them, be fruitful and multiply and replenish the earth and subdue it..." (Genesis 1 26-28). Note the use of plurals. The text could not be more clear. In the first version of the creation myth God created man and woman together.

But in Chapter 2 we find ourselves in the Garden of Eden where the second creation myth, the story of Adam and Eve and the ensuing temptation and fall of mankind, take place.

That's all well and good, but now we have a problem. Just who, pray tell, is the woman that God created in chapter one? The literalists claim that version two is a retelling of version one, but this clearly is not the case. The styles are different; God is referred to by different names in the original Hebrew, and the plants and animals are created in different orders. Moreover the second version is little more than a a retelling of an older, Sumerian creation story, and I would remind our readers that in mythology rising mists often indicate confusion. And there's a lot to be confused about. Including my question pertaining to the first woman in Chapter One. According to 8th-10th Century Jews the woman in Chapter 1 was Adam's first wife, Lilith, which in and of itself is an interesting story, although there are even more problems with the "traditional" Adam and Eve myth.

We are all familiar with how the Lord God told Adam not to eat of the "Tree of knowledge of good and evil." But where in the text does God warn Adam, and for that matter Eve, about that talking snake? God not only fails to warn the first humans about this deceptive creature, he does nothing to intervene when that talking snake is in the process of ruining the Lord's creation. And as you read further you have to ask yourself and obvious question. "Does God even have a clue as to what's going on the Garden of Eden?" After the temptation has taken place and the unnamed fruit (at no time does Genesis refer to this forbidden delicacy as an apple) has been tasted, the Lord God seems oblivious as to where his creations are located: "And they heard the voice of the Lord God walking in the Garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God amongst the trees of the garden. And the Lord God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou?" (Genesis 3: 8-9).

Hello? What is this? Assuming that the Lord God is indeed all knowing and all seeing, and assuming that he is perfect and has no need for rest, the logical question is this: Why did the Lord God feel a need to go for a stroll in the cool of the day and why didn't he know where Adam and Eve were located? ( For that matter, if God is all powerful why did he have to rest after the sixth day of creation? Did our all powerful God get tired? And if he got tired does this mean that he was not all powerful? )

Having discovered that Adam and Eve had in fact eaten from the tree of knowledge of good and evil, the Lord God then metes out a horrific punishment. He strips Adam and Eve of their immortality, exiles them from The Garden of Eden, and condemns subsequent generations of human beings (who weren't even born at the time of temptation), finite, miserable lives filled with war, chaos, murder, and incest.

Yes incest, because if we accept a literal interpretation of the King James Bible we are faced with the fact that Adam and Eve and their immediate offspring created subsequent generations through incest. Quite an accomplishment when you consider the fact that the authors of Genesis didn't even bother to mention the fact that Adam and Eve had girls. Assuming this was just a chauvinistic trait on the part of the misogynists who wrote the myths in Genesis we must face the fact that subsequent generations of humans must have arrived because of the following forms of sexual relations:

1. Sexual relations between Adam and Eve which resulted in offspring.
2. Sexual relations between Adam and his daughters which resulted in offspring.
3. Sexual relations between Eve and her sons which resulted in offspring.
4. Sexual relations between Adam and Eve's daughters and sons (between brothers and sisters) which resulted in off spring.

Translated into the common vernacular, the Lord God--thanks to his own, unforgiving actions--had to sanction the use of incest, of interbreeding between closely related family members to populate the earth.

And now comes the strange part. Rather than forgiving Adam and Eve on the spot, and using his infinite power and infinite wisdom to correct the flaws which he injected into his own creation, he decided to taunt and torture humankind for thousands of years until he finally had the bright idea of sending his Only Begotten Son into the world to--you guessed it--cleanse mankind of sins and redeem human kind.

This either makes the Lord God an incredibly slow learner, or it reduces him to a demented sadist who gleefully exiles his own flawed creation to eternal damnation for the slightest transgressions. Only to turn around and do thousands of years later, what he could have done without the whole business of the Virgin Birth, the crucifixion, Resurrection and Ascension. He could have dispensed with the anal retentive behavior, said something to the effect of "okay guys, let's try this again, let's work things out," and been done with it.

Which brings us back to the original question. How could I have given up the security of a loving God and forgiving Savior? The answer is that I haven't. When looked through objective eyes he is neither loving nor forgiving. In the final analysis it is better to live in the now, accepting the fact that when I am dead I am truly dead. And while that may frighten some people, I prefer to live in the knowledge that I only have one chance to get my life straight; one opportunity to get it right. I lose the delusion of an afterlife and an eternity of worshiping a celestial bully, but I gain clarity of thought and the motivation to make my world a better place.

As for the creation myths, and the subsequent mythologies that they spawned...
They just don't make a lick of sense.







Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Arrest Bush Before He Kills Again?

Well, the 2006 midterm elections are only seven months away, so I guess it's safe to assume that the Bush Regime, in an attempt to boost it's sagging poll numbers, and to assure a Republican House and Senate in 2007, will start another war in the Middle East. We said it here before. In 2004 the GOP catch phrase was "run on the war in 2004." And now it seems as if the strategy for this year will be "more dirty tricks on 2006."

As a part of their campaign I'm sure that we will hear a great deal of propaganda about how George W. Bush wants a diplomatic solution, and how he gave diplomacy a chance (the sames lies that we heard in 2002 and 2003 during the run up to our invasion of Iraq). But anyone with an IQ of a living room foot stool or higher knows that this is a bald face lie. In the first place, George W. Bush and his incompetent inner circle of cronies and "yes men" not only avoid diplomatic solutions; they same annoyed by the very idea that diplomatic solutions may exist to any situation.

This became obvious in 2003, shortly after the American Invasion of Iraq, when Iran, through Swiss channels, approached the Bush Administration with a peace initiative which, if pursued, might well have solved many of the issues which are irritating relations between Iran and the United States to this very day. Unfortunately for both, the US and Iran, a cabal of myopic Neocons decided that it would be in the president's best interests to block nuclear talks with Iran .

This was unfortunate because approximately 33 percent of the Iranian population is age 15 or younger. The mean age of the Iranian population is 25. By its very nature, this is a rebellious population which has grown weary of the theocratic diktats of the Iranian theocracy. They want more contact with the west. The enjoy western music, western movies, western TV programs, western entertainment, western fashion. And what did the Bush administration do? When it had an opportunity to repair American-Iranian relations, Bush and his Neocon troglodytes refused to even consider the Iranian offer. Indeed, they were openly irritated with the Swiss, who the Iranians had used as a third party go between, because they dared to introduce the possibility of normalizing relations with the Iranian people and the Iranian government. Had the proposed talks actually commenced, a wide variety of topics might have been discussed: the reintegration of Iran into the global community, nuclear weapons, and a wide range of security issues.

And the Neocon extremists would have nothing to do with it. Indeed, the Bush Administration seems overjoyed by the fact that reform has stymied by a new and more fundamentalist regime in the form of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

You just have to wonder. Why would the Bush Regime decline a diplomatic initiative from Iran. Why wouldn't it want to endear itself to both, Iranian reformers and the Iranian people in general?

It seams rather obvious to me. The Bush administration didn't WANT normal relations with Iran. Remember, this was 2003, and the Neocons were still convinced that Iraq would evolve into a flower strewn cake walk. Little did they know that those of us on the left who had predicted a prolonged guerrilla war (i.e. insurgency) and thousands of dead and wounded American soldiers had in fact been correct all along. At the time Bush and his cronies were convinced that the war in Iraq would be a quick and relatively bloodless affair. Remember the game plan. "Run on the war in 2004." In other words, run on a record of successful war making. But that left an unanswered question. What pray tell should we do about 2006?

The answer, friends and neighbors, is obvious. Not only is the Bush regime incompetent in the area of diplomacy, it loathes the very idea of diplomacy . Republicans want to run on a new war in 2006. I suspect that in the next few weeks we will hear a great deal about Iran interfering in our failed invasion of Iran, or about mushroom clouds over American cities, or new incidents of Iranian state sponsored terrorism. I don't know the proper order in which the Administration will leak these accusations to the press--it all depends on how quickly they can write new, even more deceptive propaganda and manufacture the evidence. But I am almost certain that we will be facing a wag the dog scenario here in which a highly unpopular president (some might say pretender) will decide to commit mass murder to save his illegitimate.

So until our court-appointed sociopath decides that he wants to kill again, I will leave you with the following thought.

If we sit around and do nothing it is a given that this monster will kill again. Instead of trying to find a diplomatic solution to the situation he will almost certainly do everything in his power to have an American-Iranian war underway prior to the November 2006 elections. To remedy this situation I have a rather unique idea that I would like to bounce off of our readers.

In a sane country--and I no longer consider this country to be in any way sane--a legally enabled SWAT team would storm the White House; serve search warrants on Bush, Rice, Cheney, Rumsfeld, and Gonzalez, and charge them with everything from conspiracy to commit murder to crimes against humanity--not to mention treason. They would be thrown in handcuffs and shackles and dragged out to a waiting paddy wagon in full sight of the corporate media. They would be interrogated in the presence of their lawyers; they would either answer long unanswered questions or invoke their Fifth Amendment right to not incriminate themselves, and they would go to trial. This solution has the distinct benefit of being the one and only way to make these goons change their minds about torture and the use of evidence obtained under the threat or use of torture. And while that may sound extreme, you need to remember that Bush and Cheney are merely temporary servants, while Rice, Rumsfeld, and Gonzalez are merely the appointed servants of our top civil servants. When it comes top justice they deserve no better nor worse than an accused crack dealer in an inner city slum--an appropriate analogy since this administration is little more than an intellectual and moral slum for perverts, sexual deviants, and blood thirsty psychopaths. I for one look forward to the sight of these pint sized fascists sitting in a docket in orange jump suits, participating in a publicly broadcast trial while a team of highly trained prosecutors reveal their sick, demented crimes to the American people. Ideally this would be followed by a derepublicanization of our churches, schools, and public institutions--in much the same way that post war Germany was denazified by the victorious allies, but for better or for worse we have a constitution which prevents us from extracting neofascist tumors and cancers like pseudo-Christian fundamentalism and sociopathic neoconservatism from the body politic. Like it or not we live in a country where even traitorous, destructive beliefs are protected by the framing document. And I'm all right with that. The best solution to bad speech, after all is better speech.

In the long haul I don't think an arrest will be necessary. Desirable, but not necessary. Aside from the right wing traitors, Millenialists, Dominionists, and Christian Reconstructionists who have turned Jesus Christ into the theological equivalent of right wing dictator, there really isn't a rational human being in the United States who isn't beginning to wonder if George W. Bush has a clover leaf arrangement of three sixes on his head or in the palm of his hand.

The American people have finally, finally awoken from their long sleep. They recognize George W. Bush and his demented, archaic policies for the nation destroying policies that they really are.
George W. Bush tried to say it himself. Fool me once shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me.

If Bush does nothing about Iran there is a sufficient body of lies, blunders, and outright tragedies to haunt him and the republican party until and beyond 2008. If he is both foolish, and blood thirsty enough to begin an air war (I can't imagine even Bush and Cheney being stupid enough to launch a ground invasion) the American people and (with a little luck) will quickly see through the Demander and thief's deception.

The only question is this:

How can we stop him from killing again?



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Monday, April 10, 2006

CONSEQUENCES FOR INSANITY

According to an online article by Seymour M. Hersch in the New Yorker, the Bush Administration is contemplating the idea of using bunker busting nuclear warheads on nuclear facilities in Iran, producing the usual chorus of denials and media attacks from the Administration in Washington.
We keep asking. "can it get any worse?" and much to our horror, it does. Yes, the President has indicated that he is seeking a diplomatic solution to the situation with Iran, but when you consider the fact that he said the same thing about Iraq, you just have to wonder how honest this president can be about anything.
Assuming that the president is again lying (it seems to have evolved from an enjoyable pass time into a full time obsession) I really have to wonder about the wisdom of such a strike.
Iran is not the Islamic equivalent of Grenada. There are many ways in which the Iranians could make life difficult not only for the United States but for the entire world.
1. This is an oil rich nation which could increase the price of oil by dramatically by cutting back on production. Think higher gas prices and increased inflation.
2. If Bush is foolish enough to take such a preemptive strike the Iranians could immediately launch military expeditions into Iraq and make our situation there even more difficult.
3. The Iranians could mine the Persian Gulf.
4. And then there's that matter of the underwater missile the Iranians just tested which they claim is invisible to radar.
5. An attack on the nuclear facilities would only make the Iranians more determined to obtain a nuclear weapon. For some odd reason Bush just doesn't seem to understand that nationalism is a sword that cuts both ways. Even reform-minded Iranians are proud of the fact that their nation is pursuing nuclear power and/or weapons. Moreover, an attack on Iranian nuclear facilities would only prove to the Iranians and to other Muslim nations that they need nuclear weapons to deter attacks by the one nation in the history of mankind to ever use nuclear weapons--the United States. In a similar vein, such a move would provide the Iranian government with an excuse to withdraw from the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
6. In the event of a preemptive strike, the united States would, not be able to persuade the United Nations to impose sanctions on Iran. Without sanctions like the types that were imposed Iraq after the first Gulf War, Iran would dedicate more effort, finances, and manpower towards the reconstruction of its nuclear technology. The U.S. is a world super power but it is currently bogged down in two wars, which might make proper surveillance of Iran a difficult task.
7. Bush would successfully unify both reformers and fundamentalists against the United States. As it is you have a large group of people who have grown tired of theocracy and who want more contact with the west and western culture. If Bush decides to go on a bombing spree he will do any number of things. He could give the radicals an excuse to further clamp down on would be reformers. On the other hand he might well turn the reformers against the United States and the West in general. Someone should really tell George W. Bush that countries are funny that way; hey don't like being attacked by other countries. Invasions and preemptive strikes would actually alienate the very people in Iran who we would like to help.
8. A preemptive strike would only encourage the Iranian government to strike back at the United States. Can you say "state sponsored terrorism?"
9. Iran also has 500 Shebab (types 1 and 2) ballistic missiles which can reach U.S. targets in Qatar, Oman, Kuwait, and Iraq.
10. Their Shebab 3 Missiles, (of which there may be between 25 and 100) can reach targets in Israel. Would anyone care to guess how Israel would react to an attack by Iran and how other Muslim nations would react to an Israeli retaliation? Can you say "general Gulf War?" (Although part of me suspects that Bush, in accordance with his dangerous, Domionionist World views and his fanatical belief in the End Times, would probably WELCOME a Gulf War in the hope that it would spread to a global nuclear holocaust. Hey--the Muslims have their 72 virgins and Bush probably wants to go up in a mushroom cloud so he can bow before the feet of Jesus and quip, "I did it all for you my Lord!" )
Yup. It looks as our deranged president has really thought this one through. As for the song and dance about how he wants to pursue a diplomatic solution...
Are we to assume that he has been as honest about the situation with Iran as he was with the situation with Iraq?

Saturday, April 08, 2006

BEWARE!

By Brandon and Advocate 1

If you want the honest to God truth we are more than just a little sick and tired living under a corrupt, sociopathic regime which needs constant watching and observing. That said, there seems to be a main theme running through the entire Bush Administration and the main theme is BEWARE. Contrary to a previous post, April 4 (Tuesday) was not the worst day of the week for the Republican Party. It now appears as if the entire week was an unmitigated disaster.

Where do we begin?

We were still trying to get our heads around the fact that the Department of Homeland Security had hired a kiddy porn addict to serve as its deputy spokesperson, when we learned the now confessed perpetrator, Brian Doyle, had been caught downloading kiddie porn at his previous position It appears that they did in fact run a background check, so why in the name of all that's holy didn't someone, anyone, bother to mentioned the tiny, inconvenient little fact that their new deputy spokesperson was a closet porn addict? What is it with this crowd? On the one hand they about morality and decency, condemn gays and lesbians, and shove a narrow interpretation of the King James Bible down our throats, but then they turn around and hire a pervert to serve at the Department of Homeland Security. Never mind the fact that the term "Homeland Security" sounds like something you'd find in a fascist or communist regime. This regime, in spite of its piety-mouthed hypocrisy, hasn't got a clue as to what decency and morality are all about. Either it is the most corrupt administration to ever tarnish the interior of the White House, or it is the most inept regime under which the American people have suffered since the Harding years--and that Administration did a fine job at combing the worst possible elements of corruption and congenital imbecility; only to be eclipsed by the absolute incompetency and moral rancidity which have become the all too disgusting trademarks of the Bush Regime.

Bush Saluting
George W. Bush being a "Good Christian."

What can we say? After the story broke we more or less suspected that Mister Doyle must have had some kind of previous experience with this sort of behavior, although Kyle had suspected that he might have actually molested some children. But after watching this administration for the last five years and some odd months we wouldn't be surprised by anything.

At the same time we were learning that the Department of Homeland Security had been staffed by sexual deviants, we also learned about the indictment of two election workers in Cuyahoga County, Ohio The charges, surprise surprise, were the improper handling of ballots during the 2004 presidential elections. Of course it all depends on how you define improper. In so far as the Demander and Thief were concerned, anything which kept him in power--legal or otherwise--would be considered proper if it bought him another four year term to continue his war against privacy, equality, and democracy in general.

In the meantime we learned that Bush himself was the source of the Valery Plame leak. Without rehashing the weeks events I would point out that this is a classic example as to what we've been talking about here for months now. There are clear and defined protocols for situations like this. If Bush didn't like those protocols he could have changed them, but he didn't. Instead, he went ahead and outed Valery Plame because Dick Cheney had been embarrassed, and then the Demander and Thief waited ten days to change the protocols for outing a CIA official. What does this tell us? It tells us that either Bush and his cronies are so forgetful and so stupid that they don't even understand their own protocols and executive directives, or it tells us that the Administration has such a low regard for any kind of rule or regulation--even the ones that it sets for itself--that it cannot be trusted to protect anything resembling a democratic value here at home.

BUSH, Nazi Salute
George W. Bush being his true self.

Bush said it himself. We just didn't know that he meant it. On at least three separate occasions he has expressed his preference for dictatorship.

1. "You don't get everything you want. A dictatorship would be a lot easier." ( Bush describing what it's like to be the Governor of Texas in the July 1998 edition of Governing Magazine.)

2. I told all four that there are going to be some times where we don't agree with each other, but that's OK. If this were a dictatorship, it would be a heck of a lot easier, just so long as I'm the dictator," . ( CNN.com, December 18, 2000)

3. "A dictatorship would be a heck of a lot easier, there's no question about it, " (Business Week, July 30, 2001)

Since that time he has done everything possible to undermine the Constitution. This after all was the same man who said "I don't give a goddamn...I'm the President and the Commander-in-Chief. Do it my way." And who said of the framing document, "Stop throwing the Constitution in my face. It's just a god damned piece of paper!"

As if all that weren't bad enough, we were given cause to worry about the privacy of our domestic phone calls. When Attorney General Paul Gonzalez appeared before the House Judiciary Committee on Friday, Mr. Gonzalez raised the possibility of warrantless wire taps on phone calls between Americans here in the United States, saying that he "would not rule that out."

Why are we not surprised?

Brandon
and
Advocate 1





Wednesday, April 05, 2006

TUESDAY WAS A BAD DAY FOR THE GOP

You no sooner think this administration has reached an all time low but what it finds a way to sink even deeper into the filth and sewage which has become the Republican Party.

I guess you might say that Tuesday was not a good day for the Republicans.

First Tom Delay is indicted in a Texan Finance Probe and steps aside as the House GOP leader. This of course was promptly followed by a flurry of excuses, all of which were designed to distract from the fact that Mister Delay is about as Christian as the Whore of Babylon's vagina. If this guy is a Christian I'd hate to see what a Satanist looks like.

First he created a corrupt political machine in the tradition of Boss Tweed and the Late Mayor Daley. Only Delay's machine was far more corrupt than anything you could have found in Tammany Hall or Chicago, primarily because his machine was built on a nationwide basis.

Then, when his wrong doings were revealed to the public Delay decided it would be a really cool idea to blame his opponents. Delay couldn't do anything wrong. Delay wasn't in trouble because he was a bully, a thug, a liar, and a conman. Nooooo. Delay was just a poor, misunderstood bystander who was being persecuted because he was--brace yourself--a conservative Christian! That's right. The personal responsibility people have struck again! Rather than admit that the only way he could tell the truth would be if he did so by accident, Delay decided to play the religion card and accused his critics of persecuting him because of his pseudo Christian religious beliefs.

Hello? Just what in the hell does Jesus have to do with any of this? Did Jesus tell Mister Delay to gerrymander the state of Texas? Did Jesus tell him to build a corrupt political machine based on financial illegalities? Did Jesus tell him to associate with the likes of Jack Abramoff? Aside from providing a very convenient smoke screen, what exactly has Christianity have to do with any of this? This isn't about religion. More to the point, this is about Tom Delay's very anal-retentive, type A personality and the fact that he is little more than dry drunk. He may have given up the booze but the same characteristics which landed him in hot water while he was drinking are still evident. The inability to face or tell the truth; the outbursts of temper; the inability to accept life on any terms except his own; his lack of contrition, his lack of humility, his obvious immaturity: the only thing that has changed is the nature of addiction. Instead of an addiction to alcohol he now suffers from an addiction to power. And to make the situation even worse for the Republicans, the smooth and efficient operation of the Delay Political Machine depended on Mister Delay's influence. With Delay out of the picture the machine that he built will begin to crumble, and when it does it's going to take a lot of Republicans with it.

I am certain Tom Delay will repeat his hackneyed claim that he is being persecuted because of his religious beliefs when he is in fact being prosecuted for corrupt acts, but as the facts come out, and as more Congressional Aides step forward to offer more evidence, I suspect that even the most thick-skulled of Delay loyalists will begin to realize that their mean-spirited idol had, in fact, exploited the name of Christ for his own selfish ends.

And it gets even worse. Tuesday began badly and it kept going down hill.

The Republicans were still reeling from the Delay resignation when they--like the rest of us--were stunned to learn that Brian Doyle, the Deputy Press Secretary for the Department of Homeland Security had been caught soliciting a fourteen-year-old girl on line. Only surprise, surprise, he had not been soliciting a 14-year-old girl. He had been soliciting a law enforcement official in Florida who had been running a sting operation, pretending to be a fourteen year-old girl, and Mister Doyle fell right into the trap.

From time to time we get complaints because we dare to compare the Bush Regime to the Hitler Regime. But we don't make the news. We only point out the similarities between then and now. We're not saying that George W. Bush would open death camps and perform medical experiments on his innocent victims (although he does seem to have a problem when it comes to giving suspects their day in court and he seems to believe that he is the President Supreme of the entire world). But when you look at the method by which Hitler came to power--the lying, the repetition of jingoistic slogans, the exploitation of fear and chosen groups to scapegoat--the similarities are undeniable. And the business with Mister Doyle is no different. During his rise to power, Hitler employed a wide variety of goons and thugs. Ditto to the Bush Administration which hired a male whore to pose as a legitimate journalist, and which has now been revealed as an employer of a probable pedophile. Yes, I said pedophile. If someone is sick enough to go on line and to tell a supposed 14-year-old girl what he wants her to do to him, and what he wants to do to her, then that tells me that the miserable son of a bitch is speaking from experience. The only question, as far as I'm concerned, isn't so much if he has raped young girls, but how many. Mark my words, the guy will be revealed as a child molester.

Male whores, corporate corporate and political corruption, bribery, shop-lifting, and now pedophilia. At the risk of sounding redundant, I have to ask the obvious question. Just what in the hell is WRONG with this Administration? On the one hand it preaches Christian piety. But in sharp contradiction to its hypocritical rhetoric it has proven to be the most inept, corrupt administration to come along in a hundred years.

I am tempted to say that the Administration can't go any lower, but every time I have thought this it has found new and creative ways to sink even deeper that it had before. What's next? A serial rapist? A cannibal? A sociopathic killer of children?

We are royally screwed.