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I found it interesting listening to this video of Jake Tapper interviewing evangelical mega-pastor Rick Warren ("Purposeful Life") on the forthcoming visit to his church of both McCain and Obama tomorrow. The discussion centered mainly on the approach that Warren would take in interviewing the two Presidential candidates at his Saddleback Church in California.

The conversation at one point suddenly turned to the John Edwards imbroglio and the discussion veered to adultery, trust and the Presidency. Rick Warren has some very strong words on adultery and its relationship to trust and leadership in relation to non-Presidential Candidate Edwards.  Jake Tapper, of course, did not ask the relevant question as to what part John McCain's many instances of adultery  should play in an evangelical leader's evaluation of HIM for the Presidency. Details below the fold.

TAPPER:  As a political observer and a Christian leader you must have had a personal response to the revelations about John Edwards’ personal life when he admitted he cheated on his wife. What do you think in a time like that? When you hear John Edwards tell Bob Woodruff that he’s right with his wife and he’s right with Jesus and he’s moved on, does that resonate with you or do you think, "That’s not enough, John?"

WARREN: You know, Jake there’s a difference is between forgiveness and trust. And I don’t think people understood this even as far back as, say, the Clinton scandals and things like that. The Bible teaches us that forgiveness must be instant and that we are to forgive people instantly when they sin because of three reasons: first, we’ve been forgiven by God; second, resentment makes you miserable; and third you’re going to need more forgiveness in the future.

"Forgive us our debts as we forgive those who’ve trespassed against us." So forgiveness has to be immediate but trust has to be rebuilt. Forgiveness is by grace. Trust is by works. And so if a woman’s husband is beating her and he comes back to the door and says, "Will, you forgive me?" She has to forgive him. "Yes, I forgive you." "Will you let me back into the house?" "No, that’s another matter."

You have to earn that trust. All leadership is built on trust. It’s built on credibility. If you don’t have credibility, if you don’t have authenticity, if you don’t have trust, you’re not a leader even if you have the title. And the moment you lose the trust of the American public you’re no longer the leader. You may still have the title but you’re not it. It takes years to build trust and you can lose it instantly -- and it takes even longer to rebuild.

John Edwards and others like him have lost the trust of America because they lied, and fundamentally beneath every affair it’s dishonesty, its deceit, its deception. They’re lying to God. They’re lying to themselves. They’re lying to their wives and they’re lying to the public. How do you trust someone who’s constantly lying? You can’t. That’s why it is a myth to say their personal life doesn’t matter. It does matter -- all of leadership is built on credibility.

TAPPER: Would you have compunctions about voting for someone who had cheated on his wife?

WARREN: Absolutely I would. Absolutely I would. Because if you can’t keep your faith to your most sacred vow – "’til death do us part" -- how in the world can I trust you to lead my family? My government? My nation?...Absolutely I would. I think people first need to ask forgiveness and then earn trust back over time Can trust be re-earned? Absolutely but it takes time.

Jake Tapper with Rick Warren

Originally posted to Cantinflas on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 09:21 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Warren is a fraud (10+ / 0-)

    Does he talk about the "Bush scandals?"

    they are 100,000 times more egregious than the Clinton "scandals" yet he says nothing.

    I shall not rest until right wing conservatives are 4th party gadflies limited to offering minor corrections on legislation once or twice a year.

    by davefromqueens on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 09:29:00 AM PDT

    •  Thanks for calling out this charlatan (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      davefromqueens, get the red out

      Now if someone will post a scathing review of his book, that'll make my day.

      John McCain's Straight Talk Express runs on fossil fuels.

      by Dump Terry McAuliffe on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 09:33:34 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I may take you up on that (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        VA Breeze, get the red out

        Funny thing is I was going to go to the bookstore, read Corsi's book for an hour, jot down notes and try to print a debunking.

        The Obama campaign beat me to it.

        I shall not rest until right wing conservatives are 4th party gadflies limited to offering minor corrections on legislation once or twice a year.

        by davefromqueens on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 09:36:08 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Excuse me? (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          lineatus, Cassandra Waites, MsWings

          Do you not get the irony here? We're talking about honesty and you talk openly about doing the equivalent of stealing?

          I certainly don't advocate buying Corsi's pack of lies. But how do you defend going to the bookstore and reading Corsi's book for an hour? A bookstore is not a library. I don't care whether it's a local proprietor or a gigungous corporate chain. Unless you have the manager's permission, reading a book "for an hour" so you can do research is tacky at best.

          Dude--that's what public libraries are for.

          "Troll-be-gone...apply directly to the asshole. Troll-be-gone...apply directly to the asshole."

          by homogenius on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 09:45:29 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Stealing? (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            murrayewv, ghostman, davefromqueens
            The bookstore sells books. I don't see anywhere that me mentioned taking bound paper out of the bookstore.

            It's definitely not stealing. Even copyright doesn't apply. It constrains who has a right to make a copy of the work, not who has a right to read the work. There's no copying going on here beyond fair use. And you don't have to buy anything at all to fairly use something.

          •  whatever (5+ / 0-)

            There is nothing wrong with reading books in a bookstore. That's what the chairs and tables are for. I worked in a bookstore, and we had a lot of people who would come in and spend hours reading, and leave without buying anything — and they were typically our favorite customers. They knew our names, they never caused any trouble, and they were, for the most part, fascinating to talk to. The bookstore is more than just a for-profit business, it's a community hub and a resource for knowledge. It's not tacky at all to use a bookstore as a stand-in for a library; in fact, bookstores that allow this type of behavior are more likely to thrive and do well.

            •  exactly (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              ghostman

              Since I'm a frequent customer, often 4 times a week as part of my routine, they all know me.

              And I am treated nicely.

              And often I've taken a fantasy football mag and just sat and read the whole thing for an hour, sometimes multiple mags.

              Why does the bookstore encourage this?  Because book buyers often tend to be browsers at first.  I may walk in tonight and buy nothing, same tomorrow, same sunday but by me being there, the book I browse today often becomes my purchase of next week.

              I shall not rest until right wing conservatives are 4th party gadflies limited to offering minor corrections on legislation once or twice a year.

              by davefromqueens on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 10:30:42 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  excuse me? (0+ / 0-)

            It is routine and commonplace that people go to a bookstore, take a book or magazine, and sit down, especially where I go.

            That may be one reason why they are carts to put books back on.

            For someone who frequents bookstores, it is commonplace that I may go in 2-3 times, not purchase anything, and simply browse.

            Then, based on the browsing, I purchase something the next time and do so in bulk.

            Stealing is when you take the book outside the bookstore.  If you are familiar with any case in America where someone was arrested or prosecuted for "reading in a bookstore," please let me know and I will apologize.

            I shall not rest until right wing conservatives are 4th party gadflies limited to offering minor corrections on legislation once or twice a year.

            by davefromqueens on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 10:28:58 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  People sit down and read at bookstores (0+ / 0-)

            all the time -- that's why big-box bookstores like Barnes & Noble and Borders provide benches and comfy chairs (the spouse actually fell asleep in a far corner of a local Borders, only discovered when the staff was doing the closing routine). They know that the longer people linger at a store, the more likely they are to walk out of the store with a bagload of books. It's free advertising -- you read part of a book, you find it interesting, you buy it and take it home to finish. (That's why the first several pages of a novel are invariably the most important -- you need that "hook" to get the reader involved.) Essentially, it's free advertising.

            "Old soldiers never die -- they get young soldiers killed." -- Bill Maher

            by Cali Scribe on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 10:36:52 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  These days, they want you to. (0+ / 0-)

            These days, the big chain bookstores must want you to read their books for free, since they make it so pleasant to do so.  You can purchase an overpriced drink or snack and read books in their cafe -- the markup on a $4 latte is probably greater than it is on a $20 book!   If you're frugal, you can usually find a comfy chair in the store.  

            Dems in 2008: An embarassment of riches. Repubs in 2008: Embarassments.

            by Yamaneko2 on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 11:11:44 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  He already put his way out there (3+ / 0-)

        TAPPER: Would you have compunctions about voting for someone who had cheated on his wife?

         WARREN: Absolutely I would. Absolutely I would. Because if you can’t keep your faith to your most sacred vow – "’til death do us part" -- how in the world can I trust you to lead my family? My government? My nation?...Absolutely I would. I think people first need to ask forgiveness and then earn trust back over time Can trust be re-earned? Absolutely but it takes time.

      He'll claim that McSame's was long enough ago that he has re-earned his trust.

      If he shows vision, he lacks substance. If he gives details, he's wonky. If he walks on water, he can't swim. DBunn at DKos

      by TexDem on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 09:38:55 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Bush's scandals didn't involve sex. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Cali Scribe, get the red out

      And that makes all the difference to these scumbags.

      You see, killing is preferable to fucking. Says so right in the Book. Didn't you get the Word?

      --Shannon

      •  Well, it's all a matter of perspective (0+ / 0-)

        Warren and I both believe that lying isn't good -- but I see lying us into a war that gets thousands of people killed as being far worse than lying about one's sex life, which is no one's business but your own and your spouse. Lying us into war should get you impeached -- lying about an affair should get you at most a life sentence of alimony.

        "Old soldiers never die -- they get young soldiers killed." -- Bill Maher

        by Cali Scribe on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 10:32:41 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  I'm not a big fan of his, but I don't quite lump (0+ / 0-)

      him in with the other big name evangelicals either.  From an interview on NPR last week, where they were discussing this event:

      But my agenda has expanded dramatically over the last four years. And I think one of the things I've tried to do with evangelicals is to get them to not deny their pre-existing agenda but to expand it. I'm still pro-life, but I don't call myself pro-life anymore. What I do is call myself "whole-life." I'm not just in favor of the unborn baby. I'm in favor of her when she's born. Is she a crack baby? Is she an AIDS baby? Is she a baby living in poverty? Is she going to get an education? It's not just concern for protection of the unborn but for protection of the born, too.

      The whole tone of the interview seemed to be that evangelicals were looking beyond the narrow repub agenda.  I think they know that they've been used by these guys and are more skeptical this time around.  Like the military, I don't think the repubs can count take their support for granted this time.

      Now, go spread some peace, love and understanding. Use force if necessary. - Phil N DeBlanc

      by lineatus on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 10:00:25 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  and will he have the same standard for ..... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Glic, get the red out

    MCcain that he has for Edwards?

    by his logic he can not vote for McCain based on what he says are his principles.  Will he say that publicly?  Will he be consistent?

    Principled positions could include

    1.  not voting for someone automatically b/c they committed adultery, or
    1.  believing adultery is not grounds to disqualify someone from public office. (My position and it applies to McCain)

    Does Mr. Warren have any principles?

    What would Jesus think?

    I shall not rest until right wing conservatives are 4th party gadflies limited to offering minor corrections on legislation once or twice a year.

    by davefromqueens on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 09:31:16 AM PDT

    •  I think you're reading too far into this. (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Cali Scribe, MKS, davefromqueens, NHCt

      I'm not going to say that I like Rick Warren or agree with a damn thing he says. However, from what I know of him, he is actually a fairly respectable person, and certainly not a hypocrite.

      I additionally wouldn't be surprised if he keeps his actual political opinions to himself. And, given his comment above, I wouldn't be surprised if he doesn't vote for McCain, though we'll never actually know that.

      •  Have you read his writings (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        NonnyO

        such as the purpose driven life.

        Granted Warren is more reasonable WHEN compared to crazies like Dobson, Robertson, etc...  And I actually do think Rick Warren is someone who you could go on TV for in an hour and have a reasonable and intelligent debate on issues of religion even if we totally disagreed.

        But reasonable compared to whom?

        Notice how quickly he condemned Edwards but never mentions McCain's adultery.

        Also notice he refers to Clinton scandals and not Bush scandals.

        When you get past the image, he's still comes across as a fanatical fundie even if on a personal level, he might be a cool guy.

        I shall not rest until right wing conservatives are 4th party gadflies limited to offering minor corrections on legislation once or twice a year.

        by davefromqueens on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 10:34:50 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Well, I'm not going to argue with you. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          davefromqueens

          Mostly because I predominantly agree with you.

          However, I will say that while Warren may be a fundie, I don't think he's that fanatical. He is actually genuinely concerned with issues like poverty, the environment and addressing actual social problems, compared with the typical fundies whose entire platform consists of being anti-gay and anti-choice. Warren may hold these extremist views as well, but he's much less of an asshole about it (not that that's saying too much).

          I'd rather not have to deal with any of this shit. However, given that these people exist, I'd rather have Warren as a spokesman than Dobson et al.

  •  So someone who not only had an affair, but (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Cantinflas, get the red out

    went well out of their way to lie about the timing of relevant events in their autobiography would be, like REALLY untrustworthy, I suppose?

  •  If there is a silver lining to the JRE (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Glic, get the red out, bottles

    affair, this is it-- turning that laser beam of distrust towards the Other National Adulterer.

    I hope this all gets brought up in the church discussion tomorrow. It's a can't-lose for Obama (unless he still wants JRE on his cabinet or veep, which I don't see happening for a while-- maybe after January, but not before November).

    •  If that was true, you would be correct, but (0+ / 0-)

      unfortunately it's not.  The corporate media hasn't mentioned McCain's infidelity except for very occasionally in passing.  Most low information voters who haven't followed the campaign 24/7, which includes most Americans, have no idea that McCain is an adulterer.  And the Edwards affair is just seen by many of these folks as yet another example of how immoral that the Democrats are.  As such, what should have the effect of focusing people's attention on McCain's adultery in the end actually has the affect of unfairly tarnishing Obama vicariously.  We can of course thank the corporate media for this affect.

  •  Warren (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dennisl, lineatus

    I am one of the few who wonders why yet another Christian religious leader has managed to insert himself into a political campaign. Robertson, Dobson,Warren,Graham, Reed. Where else in the democratic world do they give such import to religious leaders?

    No wonder Turkey thinks it so important to maintain a secular state against the fundies.

    Is this an endorsement of Obama?  Warren seems very clear on the subject of trust.

    Think Tank. "A place where people are paid to think by the makers of tanks" Naomi Klein.

    by ohcanada on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 09:36:27 AM PDT

    •  Listening to him on NPR a few weeks ago, (0+ / 0-)

      I think there's a good chance that he might be.  I get the feeling that this whole thing may have been organized to roll out Obama in a friendly setting to an evangelical audience.  He emphasised (repeatedly) that many evangelical voters care about more than abortion and gays, and that issues like environment, education, etc. were equally (if not more) important.  Listening to the piece, he repeatedly emphasised points that seemed friendly to Obama.

      Now, go spread some peace, love and understanding. Use force if necessary. - Phil N DeBlanc

      by lineatus on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 09:51:56 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Laïcité (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      NonnyO

      Not having the separation of church and state be a two way separation is causing the unraveling of our Republic.

      Iran, Russia, Saudia Arabia, and Norway will no longer be oil exporters by 2030. Link

      by aztecraingod on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 09:55:45 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I think that it is amazing (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mas Gaviota

    that after so many folks voted for Bush, they now sit back and complain about the man. I did not vote for him because it was clear who he was. That said, this election, is about not making the same mistakes. McCain is worse than Bush. He is arrogant, ignorant, and will do anything to get his hands on our military power. He absolutely cannot become Commander and Chief. That is what we should be worried about. He would make this a millitary state.

  •  It'll never happen... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Cantinflas

    the affairs will not be brought up.  Five bucks says they're not discussed with McCain.

  •  I posted a comment at his page, (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Cantinflas

    asking Jake Tapper why he did not ask Rick Warren about McLame's infidelity vs Warren's vote.

    Funnily enough, most of the comments there also talked about the same issue, from different angles!!

    Don't let them define Obama (NOT a muslim, NO whitey remark): Fight the Smears

    by DraftChickenHawks on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 09:52:26 AM PDT

  •  stupidity (0+ / 0-)

    When I vote for President, I worry about what he does with troops and tax money, his pecker is his own business.  If he promotes peace and shows charity to the weak, he's a good guy, even if he has some piece on the side.

  •  what are the laws about (0+ / 0-)

    taking his comments and splicing them into a political ad?

  •  Warren has been a friend to Obama (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Cali Scribe

    A major moment in Obama's career was when he spoke at Warren's AIDS conference and essentially stared-down the radical right. It showed his ability to appeal to people of all different stripes. No one expects Warren or many of his followers to back Obama, but I do expect the questions to be fair. I may disagree with Warren on a lot of issues, but he strikes me as reasonable and an actual man of faith.

  •  is the forum tomorrow w/Warren going to be on TV (0+ / 0-)

    Anyone have the details on time and network?

    Thanks!

  •  no correlation (0+ / 0-)

    There is no correlation between having an affair and being a good leader and being trustworthy. Lincoln, Jefferson, FDR, JFK, Johnson all cheated on their wives yet they still manage to bring good to this country. Yet for all we know Bush has been faithful to Laura but I bet most of us here on this diary would not make the argument that GW Bush is trustworthy. But Warren's viewpoint applies that Bush is a more trustworthy President than Bill Clinton simply because Bill cheated on Hillary. That is a hard argument to make. Someone needs to ask Warren if he was alive in 1860 if he would have voted for Douglas over Lincoln? Would Douglas have been a better President than Lincoln simply because Honest Abe cheated? Douglas wanted slavery to be a state by state issue so I doubt Douglas would have ended slavery. Would Warren have voted for Hoover over FDR and Nixon over JFK? I mean if we are going to look at adultery as being untrustworthy and being a bad leader then we have to examine our past presidents who cheated and proved that they were untrustworthy and unfit to lead. Otherwise, it's a hard argument to make.

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