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This is my attempt to make sense of the current Republican Party.  I think they have slowly morphed into a cross between a religious/cult-like group and an infomercial style marketing machine.

The religious element being that they largely do not see the world as complex or needing proportional solutions, but rather, a black and white fantasy story of good and evil.  Jesus and the saints are replaced with Ronald Reagan and Grover Norquest & Fox News.  The devil is inside all Democrats, government workers, and academia people who challenge the talking points of the saints.  By definition, we should never question and always have faith in the decreed FoxNews commentary.  They have no process of self-analysis of their own ideas (ie, just have faith in the initial brainstorming thought from the saints).   It’s a simple world to process if you believe in set of easy to consume commandments (trickle down always works, lower taxes on super-rich , traditional family appearances, etc).  

Just taking taxes as an example, if the tax rate for $1M+ income was 32%...they’d want it to be 20%.....if it was 2%, they’d want it to be 0%.  The amounts don’t matter in their minds.   There’s no interest in the details or the baseline or whether the number is a real world optimal or went too far…only that it should always be lower as the prophets have explained.  

Democrats have constant hope they will act as a strong second party with a counter-balance of thoughts that add to the discussion.  Instead they are like David Karesh followers that focus all mental energy on a perfect Heavenly or Armageddon end game of pure good and evil high level solutions.   Their “good” solutions are auto-pilot in nature, meaning trickle down needs no self-checks, etc.  Problems at the detail level are magically overwhelmed with their grand efficient and robust system based on the thought that all business is pure good and all government is pure evil.   They spent 15 seconds to come up with this grand idea and repeat to themselves 5 times a day…how could it fail?

Meanwhile, democrats struggle to comprehend that a significant portion of our population is so far off the reservation as a baseline starting point.   It’s one thing to apply good and evil struggles to our afterlife and spiritual lives, but to apply it to the leaky pipe in the bathroom or your health care choices or the next unanticipated national problem seems delusional, but that is the core belief system.   Just have faith and put no energy into tinkering with the messiness of the details in a grey world.

The marketing side is built along the same lines.  The idea is to just market and hammer home conclusions that sound complete.  It’s like an infomercial that sells the ab-roller and claim it will not only help your abs, but also your entire body,….even your financial life…even your sex life…it will clear your mind at work…it’s more powerful than Tony Robbins.  It’s all about selling the one size fits all solution and never stop repeating it.  Just repeating it seems to convince people in droves...always amazed how popular mostly unsubstantiated opinions can get versus the boring facts.  Facts are just not as sexy as innuendo.

The democrats are like a small company with many needed departments  (customer service, engineering, IT, Sales/Mkt, etc).  They may not be completely optimal and at some times clumsy, but the product is continually improved with a natural loop:  customer->customer Service->engineering loop, while sales/mkt can sell an ever improving product.

The republicans are like a small company of all marketing people that focus on what marketing people do…hammering home ideas so they stick in your head.  Nothing wrong with that, I suppose. The problem is they have no intention to make a usable product because they themselves (and their followers) believe as a core talking point that customer service, engineering, and any company infrastructure is useless overhead (aka, government spending).  This can work to some extent with an every four or every two year election with dead periods in between.  The election cycle is basically all marketing…it’s just talking about what-if scenarios.    

The problem is eventually the product will fail (with no support) and to some extent they know that’s coming and hoping it happens in quiet non-election cycle times.  The next card to play if you are all marketing and it’s clear your product just failed in front of our eyes is to apply your basic "confuse and deceive" game plan!  It’s a fundamental key to the second wave playbook.  Point fingers at the idol democrat in the back of the room or whatever straw man is convenient.   That’s really all you got if your company is based on 100% marketing and not fully designing an organization that will make the product succeed and serve the customer’s needs.

Originally posted to noelcor on Thu Sep 13, 2012 at 04:54 PM PDT.

Also republished by Street Prophets and Community Spotlight.

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Comment Preferences

  •  To answer your headline question (25+ / 0-)

    Yes.

    The Republican Party has become the repository of a uniquely American blend of ignorant, anti-Science Christianism, a jingoist American Exceptionalism that is entirely divorced from history, a profoundly paranoid fear of the outer world beyond our borders, a shallow Chamber of Commerce business mentality that believes people will buy a pile of excrement if it's sold correctly, and a cynical, thoroughly corrupt overlord class of incredibly wealthy Wall Street tycoons and financiers.

    Virtually all Republican politicians at all levels of government represent some, if not all, of these qualities. The numbers of Republicans who do not is quickly dwindling, and those few are completely without power and influence within the GOP.

  •  In an uneasy relationship with Christianity (5+ / 0-)

    Remember Conservapedia's project to rewrite the Bible to remove the "liberal bias"?

  •  Well This is What Fundamentalism Has Become Over (18+ / 0-)

    the past 40 years, and they've grown enough to come to dominate the party. Rightwing leadership of some sort recruited them to become conservative activists way back then, and I think they helped them upgrade their televangelism and revival meetings to modern marketing. This aspect of them has been growing since the late 70's or so.

    I've visited these churches periodically over that whole period as a guest musician for the occasional wedding or funeral, and sometimes to sit in with a band etc. for some of their special events.

    By the 1980's there was a feel to the caliber and type of organization in the megachurches that had me totally creeped out. I didn't learn about their recruitment and support to help create the religious right until very recently.

    You might visit your local RW megachurch some Sunday and check out the people, the preaching, the activities, everything you can see & hear.

    You could probably open one of these things like a franchise, there are probably guide books for obtaining or building property, getting financing, setting up the stage and AV, filling bookstores, recorded and printed music, sermons, educational materials. In any case it wouldn't require you to visit more than 2-3 of these churches and take notes, and figure out what has to be obtained and set up.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Thu Sep 13, 2012 at 05:35:54 PM PDT

    •  Zactly (6+ / 0-)

      "Injustice wears ever the same harsh face wherever it shows itself." - Ralph Ellison

      by KateCrashes on Thu Sep 13, 2012 at 05:55:07 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  they do operate as a franchise (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      FarWestGirl

      Eddie Long and Creflo Dollar both do, among others.

      pseudoscience can kill

      by terrypinder on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 08:33:40 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I think a lot of our problems can be traced to the (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dr Stankus, FarWestGirl, Farlfoto

      rise of the Evangelicals.

      I was just talking with my daughter about this and how different it was 40 or 50 years ago before anyone ever heard of an Evangelical.

      I think they are a group that are susceptible to propaganda and brainwashing, which is why most of them are Evangelicals. Fox, hate radio and the Republican party have taken advantage of that.

      •  Yep! (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        NoMoreLies, Dr Stankus, FarWestGirl

        They prey on the confused and depressed. My sis n law fell for them hook line and sinker. She has always had a difficult relationship with her husband and about 10 yrs ago she hit rock bottom. Instead of leaving him she chose to find "Jesus" in one of those mega-churches. At the time I warned her to be careful because they will try to brainwash you. Too late already there. She is still heavily involved in it and of course has renoucned her Democratic roots for the ultra conservative mindset.

        •  The rhythm of many of what we used to call the (0+ / 0-)

          'Holy Rollers', (Evangelicals'), sermons do tend to cause a semi-hypnotic state in the audience. The tent revivals and the corrupted versions of Chatauqua were all about that sort of 'show', folks went for the entertainment out in the boonies where not much happened and some got hypnotized and then brainwashed by the performers.

          Information is abundant, wisdom is scarce. The Druid

          by FarWestGirl on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 05:29:55 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I don't know, and hate to say it.... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            FarWestGirl

            but when people completely suspend reason and start believing propaganda and think they have the ultimate answers.....

            It just makes me think of Germany in 1936.

            •  Hitler and the others usd the huge rallys to whip (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Farlfoto

              up the crowds and used the same sort of hypnotic inductions to sway their people. The economic situation at the time made them more vulnerable, as does the economic situation of many of the Evangelicals' target demographic. There are a lot of similarities.

              Sometimes I even think that a lot of these folks are souls cycling through again who didn't learn what they should have in WWII. ::sigh::

              Information is abundant, wisdom is scarce. The Druid

              by FarWestGirl on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 06:38:55 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

  •  I like this metaphor. (10+ / 0-)

    I think it really adds something to the conversation and is a neat way to think about what's happening.

    It's not that hard for a church, for example, to change from the beliefs of the founders to follow one particular pastor, or one mission, or one method of being "church" without realizing it.   Then if it is pointed out by outsiders that they're not who they claim to be (because they've changed) they demonize the ones who pointed it out.

    Many far right conservatives DO look at liberals or progressives as if they're "possessed" or working for evil.  That really explains a lot.

    Thank you for giving me something to chew on.

    "Because inside every old person is a young person wondering what happened." -Terry Pratchett

    by revsue on Thu Sep 13, 2012 at 05:42:07 PM PDT

    •  It also describes the cult-like aspects of both (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      revsue

      their creed and their approach and methods. They are isolationist and acquisitive, mostly of money and power, but also they look for 'social proof' of their views as measured by the number of followers they can claim, so recruitment is a major interest for several reasons.

      Information is abundant, wisdom is scarce. The Druid

      by FarWestGirl on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 05:34:36 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  This is actually a quite enlightening take (10+ / 0-)

    you're correct in that the GOP can no longer engage in rational debates required for effective governance in a democracy; they can't be a responsible opposition party, because their ideas, policy positions and legislative goals don't stand up to rational debate or any kind of scrutiny.  They can't afford to compromise because compromise would weaken the wobbly foundation upon which those ideas, policy positions and legislative goals rest.

    Thanks!

    Words can sometimes, in moments of grace, attain the quality of deeds. --Elie Wiesel

    by a gilas girl on Thu Sep 13, 2012 at 06:14:33 PM PDT

  •  Lets just say it (11+ / 0-)

    Todays Republicans are just plain bat shit insane

  •  Republished to Street Prophets. nt (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DJ Rix, FarWestGirl
  •  I have a few Republican friends (4+ / 0-)

    None of them  are Evangelicals, yet I consider them all unhinged from reason & in thrall to right wing Christian beliefs. It still baffles me how they got to that place. Step by step.

    "There ain't no sanity clause." Chico Marx

    by DJ Rix on Thu Sep 13, 2012 at 11:38:10 PM PDT

  •  Like the 'faithful', (4+ / 0-)

    Republicans believe things that others think improbable if not ridiculous (e.g. walking on water, cutting taxes = more tax revenue).

    LIke the failthful, they cannot be persuaded to see reason.

    Don't let millionaires steal Social Security.
    I said, "Don't let millionaires steal Social Security!"

    by Leo in NJ on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 03:21:02 AM PDT

    •  We have reached (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dr Stankus, FarWestGirl, Leo in NJ

      six impossible things before breakfast.

      In the end the Party would announce that two and two made five, and you would have to believe it. It was inevitable that they should make that claim sooner or later: the logic of their position demanded it. Not merely the validity of experience, but the very existence of external reality was tacitly denied by their philosophy.
      George Orwell, 1984

      Hey, Mitt! Thanks for ObamneyCare. http://www.healthcare.gov

      by Mokurai on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 02:42:34 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Rationality vs Belief (8+ / 0-)

    Excellent post.

    There are those who accept belief as a test of truth.  As in the questions: Do you believe in UFO's, the Bible as the literal word of "God", Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy, etc..

    No rational argument will convince believers that their truth has no objective reality -- that symbols are not magic.  Flag, religion, honor, duty, loyalty, obedience, country, and race is the foundation for the groupthink and intolerant bigotry that is the contemporary Republican party.

    We should never forget that the political theorists of the US right, while wearing the sheep's clothing of "democracy" have consistently theorized and argued for what in reality is an authoritarian, nativist, one-party, corporate state, under a mantle of mandatory, state sponsored fundamentalist Christianity.

    Labor was the first price paid for all things. It was not by money, but by labour, that all wealth of the world was originally purchased. - Adam Smith

    by boatwright on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 04:42:36 AM PDT

  •  'christian'? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FarWestGirl



    The religions have a lesson in what is 'free speech' and how far one can take it, it's called 'blasphemy' and it's a once 'sin' that those doing so pointed at others, or using Gods {'Jesus' } name in vain, as to this 'christianity' and false Propheteering  are to answer for, like all the once 'sins', ignored now in the major religions!! There's also one of them teachings: "Do {say} unto others as you would have them do {say} onto you!", meaning you lead by example, not hollow empty words of faith, especially twisted and trying to force on others, and you feel the self guilt when you fail to do so but learn from as you ask for forgiveness and the forgiveness comes with doing better, not saying you do better!

    Them especially as they use religious rhetoric, not to mention all the so called christians that don't participate in the politic but speak the bible thumping, are No Different then those others they condemn!!

    Vets On FLOTUS and SLOTUS, "Best - Ever": "We haven't had this kind of visibility from the White House—ever." Joyce Raezer - Dec. 30, 2011

    by jimstaro on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 05:15:49 AM PDT

  •  Elevation of US Constitution to a sacred text (9+ / 0-)

    I agree with your assessments, but you are forgetting how conservatives have elevated the role and importance of the US Constitution to that of a sacred text on par with The Bible. This has resulted in a document that is (literally) carried around on a daily basis the same as The Bible. Like the bible, the Constitution cannot be altered EXCEPT by a true believer. Thus, the pre-Amendment Constitution was consecrated by god (it says so in the Declaration of Independence) and is, therefore, sacred. Any changes were man-made, and, are by definition, heretical.

    •  Interpreters (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      noelcor, skod, FarWestGirl

      Clearly, the bible and the constitution are 'perfect' works that can be understood and interpreted only by an ordained priesthood.  

      Researching how, why and by whom those 'perfect' works were assembled and edited to their immutable perfection is not necessary or useful labor -- and should be banned.

      Researching how, why and by whom the priesthood has been ordained is not necessary or useful labor -- and should be banned.

      Anyone who disagrees with the ordained priesthood's interpretation is clearly an heretic, and should be either disregarded out of hand or stoned to death for blasphemy.

      We interpreters of the sacred texts will let you know whom to stone.  

      snark

    •  In the Bible Belt, they carry this one step (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      FarWestGirl

      further. It is the Confederate Constitution that represents the Original Intent of the (slaveowning) Founders, as you can read in speeches of the time. That is the intent of the Lost Cause, the South Will Rise Again, Massive Resistance to Yankee Commie Nazi Kenyan Muslim Tyranny, and those who persistently bring up unconstitutional ideas like the line-item veto, which was in the Confederate Constitution.

      Hey, Mitt! Thanks for ObamneyCare. http://www.healthcare.gov

      by Mokurai on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 02:46:51 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  And they ignore inconvenient parts in the exact (0+ / 0-)

      same way. They're perfect, except for the parts that they don't like.

      Information is abundant, wisdom is scarce. The Druid

      by FarWestGirl on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 05:37:57 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Not only that... (0+ / 0-)

      but you must admit that the constant need for them to deem the Fathers as Believers who are divinely inspired is related to their dementia.  They just have to believe that those holy men thought the same way as they do.  

  •  More precisely (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    grollen, FarWestGirl

    It's true that "they largely do not see the world as complex or needing proportional solutions, but rather, a black and white fantasy story of good and evil." However, this used to be merely a marketing strategy based on keeping messages simple and understandable. But over time, even some of the party's leadership began to buy into its own rhetoric. Worse, the strategy fortified simplistic views among the GOP's largely no-nothing base, creating the "tea party" wing that has completely straitjacketed the party.

  •  Depends what you mean by "Republican Party" (5+ / 0-)

    To me the answer is clearly 'no'. The is because I see the Republican Party as the party which represents America's financial elites. The GOP is about wealth and the rest is just doing what needs doing to TCB.

    The problem with being the party for the elites is that by definition there are very few elites. Such a party will not win many elections without allies. But how to attrack these allies? "Help me get richer", is a poor lure. So the GOP relies upon emotional triggers to capture a core alliance. For some forty years now those core allies have been the religious right.

    But the GOP does not exist to serve the religious right. It exists to serve the financial elites. The GOP has a pattern of raising an emotional issue then doing nothing about it after election day.

    We will make gay marriage illegal!

    Actually, gay marriage is spreading.

    We will make flag burning unconstitutional!

    Have you heard so much as a word since?

    After a string of broken promises the emotional manipulations have to get bigger and bigger in order to continue the manipulations. So we've reached the point where the GOP is throwing about charges so outrageously over the top even many core allies don't buy the4 malarkey.

    I think what we are seeing are the death throes of the GOP Southern Strategy model. But the nation's elites will cobble together a new core alliance group. The elites would not be elite if they did not have their own party. They will find another core alliance formulation. So the GOP will go on, abandoning the religious right once final time.

    •  After the Republican Party implodes (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      FarWestGirl

      due to an insufficiency of angry rich old White Pseudo-Christian men, we can see an extended period in which the Democrats have things to themselves, while the plutocrats, the Malefactors of Great Wealth (TR), the Economic Royalists (FDR) set about trying to buy out the "Centrist" wing of the Democrats, which then, they hope, splits from the Progressives. The question is, how much of the old Base and its narrow issues will they have to abandon in order to accomplish this? And will the abandoned Evangelicals decide yet again, as they have done in times past, that politics is too dirty a business for such pure-minded people as they?

      It worked on the Democratic-Republican Party after the implosion of the Federalists, and the creation of the Republican party after the implosion of the resulting Whigs, and again in the great realignment starting in the 1960s.

      Right after the implosion of the Federalists we had the one-party Era of Good Feeling. I'm looking forward to another.

      Hey, Mitt! Thanks for ObamneyCare. http://www.healthcare.gov

      by Mokurai on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 02:58:24 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Citizens united put the brakes on the death throes (0+ / 0-)

      of the GOP.  I really don't see how we can avoid a constant influx of so much money to make any difference.  All that cash may be defibrillating the heart of the republicans, lets just hope those death throes dont result in a resurrection.

  •  I think it's the money. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Farlfoto

    The way to buy elections is to saturate media with adds and propaganda. That's what we are seeing.

    Follow the money.

  •   Lets be honest (0+ / 0-)

    Can you name one good idea the republican party has had in the last, lets say, 80 years?

    Think hard, but if your brain starts to explode, I give you permission to stop.

    "Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain!"

    by jkay on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 07:10:52 AM PDT

    •  Challenge Accepted! (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jkay, Dr Stankus, FarWestGirl

      How about the Interstate Highway system?

      We have no desire to offend you -- unless you are a twit!

      by ScrewySquirrel on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 11:33:19 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I have a long list, from my Code Words glossary, (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      FarWestGirl, ssffgr

      going back two centuries.

      Liberal
          Commie N***-lover. Also,

      • Everybody on the old Republican Heroes pages, long since taken down, from Abraham Lincoln to Ronald Reagan
      • Pro-choice, anti-Vietnam war Ayn Rand, who knew that big business can be the biggest enemy of big business
      • George W. Bush, for admitting the reality of Global Warming
      • George H. W. Bush, for raising taxes
      • Ronald Reagan, who signed the Convention Against Torture in 1988, during a period of much higher terrorist activity, and also insisted on applying the rule of law to them as common criminals. Thanks to Glenn Greenwald for pointing this out at Salon.com. Reagan also took a stand against banning openly gay teachers from public high schools in California, and tried to make a deal with Gorbachev to get rid of all US and Soviet nuclear weapons. Most relevant today, Reagan said, "We’re going to close the unproductive tax loopholes that allow some of the truly wealthy to avoid paying their fair share. In theory, some of those loopholes were understandable, but in practice they sometimes made it possible for millionaires to pay nothing, while a bus driver was paying ten percent of his salary, and that’s crazy. [...] Do you think the millionaire ought to pay more in taxes than the bus driver or less?"
      • Barry Goldwater, the anti-Christian-Right supporter of gays in the military
      • Richard M. Nixon, the tree-hugging (EPA), Socialist (Negative income tax to replace Welfare), Peacenik (ended Vietnam War) appeaser (trip to China)
      • Dwight Eisenhower, the tax-and-spend Interstate Highway-building tyrant who sent troops to Alabama to enforce school desegregation.
      • Milton Friedman, but only during his brief Socialist delusion, when he thought that a Negative Income Tax to replace Welfare was a Conservative idea.
      • Anti-Socialist F. A. Hayek, author of The Road to Serfdom and Why I am Not a Conservative—"Experience has shown that separate never is equal and cannot be equal."
      • Edmund "Tax and Spend" Burke, who wrote "Parsimony is not economy. Expense, and great expense, may be necessary for true economy."

      Hey, Mitt! Thanks for ObamneyCare. http://www.healthcare.gov

      by Mokurai on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 03:06:22 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  More Cult than religious group (8+ / 0-)

    There are religions and then there are cults.  By any objective measure I can think of the Republican party has been trending to cult since their conscious decision to leverage fundamentalist Christians for electoral benefit.

    The republican party has always embraced authoritarian governance.   It reached full stride during Bush II when their "you're with us or against us" infected every aspect of what they did: foreign policy, hiring, attendance at events, judges, media access, etc. Those who did not show absolute fealty, those who would speak the truth, were attacked, banished, and destroyed professionally. And those who even associated with non-believers would find themselves primaried, fired, or cut off from access and the republican money machine.

    In my view, this transformation to a cult-like party is also reflected in the republicans become a party of believers, and I don't mean in God. As republicans they simply believe what they understand republicans should believe. Obama is a socialist, tax cuts pay for themselves, death panels, voter fraud is real, global warming is a hoax, the Ryan plan balances the budget, etc.  And they also believe that anyone who does not agree with what they believe is not simply of a different opinion, but that they are bad, even evil, and insufficiently Christian.

    To equate the republican party as a religion with infomercial marketing scratches the surface of how insidious the republican party has become. Today's republican party is the embodiment of politics stripped of fact and reason. They are the perfect storm of money, power and religious-like devotion. Their "base" is fanatic, cult-like, and impervious to facts or reason. They believe what their "leaders" tell them to believe, and vote how their leaders tell them to vote.

  •  Yes..but they have method to (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FarWestGirl, Farlfoto

    their madness.  They want war.  They want WWIII
    They want Armageddon.   They want the end of the world..  They are bored.  They are endtimers.

    We the People have to make a difference and the Change.....Just do it ! Be part of helping us build a veteran community online. United Veterans of America

    by Vetwife on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 08:16:45 AM PDT

    •  Ignorance is King- from A Canticle for Leibowitz- (0+ / 0-)
      Ignorance is King. Many would not profit from his overthrow for they enrich themselves by means of his dark monarchy. They are his Court and under his aegis they defraud and govern for their own benefit and to perpetuate their power. They milk and shear and butcher the flocks that they maintain on bread and circuses, herding and stampeding them at their whim. Communication and education they fear, for the written word and the ability to think are channels by which the subjects may lift themselves into the light of reason, there to see the glaring flaws of the reign and rise up to throw off its yoke. The minions of Ignorance have weapons keen-honed and they use them with skill. They will press battle upon the world when their interests are threatened, and the violence which follows will last until the structure of society as it now exists is leveled to rubble and we are left among the ruins.      Adapted from the 1959 post-apocalyptic cautionary tale ‘A Canticle for Leibowitz’ by WM Miller Jr .
      The point you made echoes-
      The minions of Ignorance have weapons keen-honed and they use them with skill. They will press battle upon the world when their interests are threatened, and the violence which follows will last until the structure of society as it now exists is leveled to rubble and we are left among the ruins.
      It gives me chills to watch it coming.

      Information is abundant, wisdom is scarce. The Druid

      by FarWestGirl on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 05:47:56 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  the answer to your headline is yes. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FarWestGirl, Farlfoto

    They're an overtly Christian fundamentalist party now.

    American media won't discuss this, and those that do will be called anti-Jesus and "god-haters" even among liberals because Christianity holds considerable privilege in the United States.

    pseudoscience can kill

    by terrypinder on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 08:31:21 AM PDT

  •  If you believe in an all-powerful and active god, (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    noelcor, FarWestGirl

    then the reason you have a leaky pipe is because of god (after all, he could have prevented it from leaking).  Then you are stuck with trying to figure out why god let your pipe brake.  It is a simple and slippery slope from a causal world-view where everything must have an explaination:  shit doesn't just happen, someone or something must make it happen.  The silliness of the republicans is causality taken to an extreme where you worry more about placating the spirits that broke your pipe than you worry about the consequences of simply ordinary actions.

    It works because most people operate on this level - they feel there must be a reason (and usually an external reason) for everything.  It creates a false sense of order where none exists (none except what we make).

    and their contempt for the Latin schools was applauded by Theodoric himself, who gratified their prejudices, or his own, by declaring that the child who had trembled at a rod would never dare to look upon a sword.

    by ban48 on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 08:36:25 AM PDT

  •  the Church of Mammon (5+ / 0-)

    There exists an all-knowing, all-powerful, and perfectly good entity called "the Market".  The Market is the First Cause; no-one ever did anything except to become more valuable and make more money and without money to make, we'd all just lie on the ground and starve to death.  The Market is also the source of natural law and morality: rewarding you with profit or punishing you with poverty according to its own standard.  The Market loves us and wants us to be happy, and if we'd just submit ourselves to its superior reason and morality, then we'd all be rich and free and what have you, wanting for nothing and achieving everything.

    It's not just a religion, it's fundie Christianity with the name of God changed.  No wonder we call them "market fundamentalists" and no wonder the fundies don't see any contradiction.

    To those who say the New Deal didn't work: WWII was also government spending

    by Visceral on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 09:25:31 AM PDT

  •  There are laws against selling snake-oil (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    grollen, FarWestGirl, Farlfoto

    ..and patent "medicine."

    But the Republicans aren't going to allow fact-checkers to run their campaign.

    It'd be almost humorous if it wasn't so deadly serious.

    Mitt Romney is to Successful Businessman as Serial Rapist is to Successful Ladies Man

    by Anthony Page aka SecondComing on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 09:29:45 AM PDT

  •  THIS! (0+ / 0-)

    But I would also add that I think religion itself is an infomercial/marketing machine that markets its own continued existence.

  •  Cult is the operative word.... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    grollen, NoMoreLies, FarWestGirl

    think Elmer Gantry....the ones at the top are using the propaganda techniques of the old USSR/Goebbels/and Elmer combined for their own PROFIT.  

     Some are conscious of what they are doing, some have brain washed themselves.

    PROFIT is the name of their God.

    "I think it is much more interesting to live not knowing than to have answers that might be wrong." Richard Feynman

    by leema on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 10:07:49 AM PDT

  •  they've full-on morphed into a theocratic party (7+ / 0-)

    That's what's ruined both Republican politics and the Christian religion -- they've married, become hopelessly entangled with one another, and destroyed each other.  They're now zealots who don't know how to reason because facts and logic are things they have to overcome to keep believing what they want to believe.  That's why most of their pundits (Glenn Beck especially) use the trappings of telegangelists to spout their messages.  That's why they use cult tactics such as claiming they're being picked on by a hostile media, etc., to remain insular.  

    Hell, even their freakin' hairstyles are starting to look televangelistic.  Half those guys on FOX News look like Robert Tilton now.  

    Anyway, it's one reason they seriously need to not only be stopped, but demoralized.  The situation in this country will never improve until the Republican Christian Taliban are defeated so utterly that they're forced to give up hope.  So, get everybody you can to vote against them.

    "Glenn Beck ends up looking like a fat, stupid child. His face should be wearing a chef's hat on the side of a box of eclairs. " - Doug Stanhope

    by Front Toward Enemy on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 10:11:29 AM PDT

  •  Have you checked the 14 Points of Fascism lately? (8+ / 0-)

    It's quite eerie how many of them are fulfilled or in the process of being fulfilled by the Republican party.

    The 14 points of Fascism

       1. Powerful and Continuing Nationalism

        Fascist regimes tend to make constant use of patriotic mottos, slogans, symbols, songs, and other paraphernalia. Flags are seen everywhere, as are flag symbols on clothing and in public displays.

      2. Disdain for the Recognition of Human Rights

        Because of fear of enemies and the need for security, the people in fascist regimes are persuaded that human rights can be ignored in certain cases because of "need." The people tend to look the other way or even approve of torture, summary executions, assassinations, long incarcerations of prisoners, etc.

      3. Identification of Enemies/Scapegoats as a Unifying Cause

        The people are rallied into a unifying patriotic frenzy over the need to eliminate a perceived common threat or foe: racial, ethnic or religious minorities; liberals; communists; socialists, terrorists, etc.

        4. Supremacy of the Military

        Even when there are widespread domestic problems, the military is given a disproportionate amount of government funding, and the domestic agenda is neglected. Soldiers and military service are glamorized.

        5. Rampant Sexism

        The governments of fascist nations tend to be almost exclusively male-dominated. Under fascist regimes, traditional gender roles are made more rigid. Opposition to abortion is high, as is homophobia and anti-gay legislation and national policy.

        6. Controlled Mass Media

        Sometimes the media is directly controlled by the government, but in other cases, the media is indirectly controlled by government regulation, or sympathetic media spokespeople and executives. Censorship, especially in war time, is very common.

        7. Obsession with National Security

        Fear is used as a motivational tool by the government over the masses.

        8. Religion and Government are Intertwined

        Governments in fascist nations tend to use the most common religion in the nation as a tool to manipulate public opinion. Religious rhetoric and terminology is common from government leaders, even when the major tenets of the religion are diametrically opposed to the government's policies or actions.

        9. Corporate Power is Protected

        The industrial and business aristocracy of a fascist nation often are the ones who put the government leaders into power, creating a mutually beneficial business/government relationship and power elite.

        10. Labor Power is Suppressed

        Because the organizing power of labor is the only real threat to a fascist government, labor unions are either eliminated entirely, or are severely suppressed.

        11. Disdain for Intellectuals and the Arts

        Fascist nations tend to promote and tolerate open hostility to higher education, and academia. It is not uncommon for professors and other academics to be censored or even arrested. Free expression in the arts is openly attacked, and governments often refuse to fund the arts.

        12. Obsession with Crime and Punishment

        Under fascist regimes, the police are given almost limitless power to enforce laws. The people are often willing to overlook police abuses and even forego civil liberties in the name of patriotism. There is often a national police force with virtually unlimited power in fascist nations.

       13.  Rampant Cronyism and Corruption

        Fascist regimes almost always are governed by groups of friends and associates who appoint each other to government positions and use governmental power and authority to protect their friends from accountability. It is not uncommon in fascist regimes for national resources and even treasures to be appropriated or even outright stolen by government leaders.

        14. Fraudulent Elections

        Sometimes elections in fascist nations are a complete sham. Other times elections are manipulated by smear campaigns against or even assassination of opposition candidates, use of legislation to control voting numbers or political district boundaries, and manipulation of the media. Fascist nations also typically use their judiciaries to manipulate or control elections.

    •  Equal parts enlightening and frightening (0+ / 0-)

      I have never let my mind think of the Fascism match.  Thanks...just a little more to chew on.

      There's room at the top, they're telling you still, but first you must learn how to smile as you kill. -J Lennon

      by noelcor on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 11:01:02 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  clearly NOT a rethorical question (0+ / 0-)

    The christian knew that their BS was untenable and sought these many years to exploit their advantage as the major part of the 'southern strategy' on the most daft of our political parties.

    They were willing to sustain losses as long as the long game remained tenable.  The christian wants to destroy America for it's own selfishness.  They took a chance on Romney b/c they knew that he was a spineless piece of shit and would as Norquist pointed out, be a man willing to sell his soul and sign any piece of legislation they put in front of him.  The other nutcases like inSantorium, Bat shit Bachmann and  Newt were quite literally toxic.  They were good enough as ground troops, but couldn't expect lead the nation across the desert.

    Of course, there is the new cabal of the christian and Israel.  Netanyahu is doing his best to undermine Obama, so that he can cure his paranoia of Iran.  The jews can't do it alone, they need our help to provide the necessary firepower and the number of troops to act as policemen in the infected areas.  A part of their plan is to infiltrate the military at the Academy and troop level.  To this end, they've once again been moderately successful especially at the AF Academy.

    •  what do you mean (0+ / 0-)

      "the jews"?

      "a lie that can no longer be challenged becomes a form of madness" -Debord

      by grollen on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 12:32:22 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  There are several different version of (0+ / 0-)

        "the Jews", most of them falsely lumping them all together.

        There is a traditional Jewish version, as in "Is it good for the Jews?" to which the answer is, by long tradition, No, whatever it is.

        There is a virulent anti-Semitic version, in which "the Jews" stand for whatever evil they have in their own hearts, from blood libel to international conspiracy.

        There is a version that appears in Armageddonist hallucinations, "the Jews" who are going to kill off all of the Muslims, and who will either be killed off in the process, or convert to Christianity just in time for the Tausend-Jahre Reich Thousand Year Reign of Christ on Earth.

        Then there is the version of "the Jews" used in Likud political and military calculations, where it can refer to Zionists, settlers, the Israeli Defense Forces, AIPAC, or Jews for Jesus, in any and all combinations. Just not liberal Jews. Or sane Jews. But I repeat myself.

        Hey, Mitt! Thanks for ObamneyCare. http://www.healthcare.gov

        by Mokurai on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 03:26:43 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Republicans themselves (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    NoMoreLies

    have become pretty aware that their party gatherings, when they try to  look respectable, look and behave and sound an awful lot like clergy and audiences at white megachurches or Mormon wards.

    There is an obvious merger/mutual takeover of white Christian Culture and the Republican Party.  

    This impresses some people immensely.  Others, like me, see the fragility and ephemeral nature of it behind all the big screen PowerPoint presentations, sneering solemnity, and expensive looking suits.

    What you have to know about megachurches is their awful retention rate of their young within active American Christianity- it's 20% to 30%, somewhere in that area.  And it's not the smart and well-adjusted ones.   All the unceasing marketing and promotions and appearance of competence and competitiveness with The Degraded Secular (Eww!) Culture Out There does not fool their own kids.  The product is still crap.  But it's quite comforting crap if your standard isn't high.

    It's worth remembering who isn't the megachurches and the Republican Party.  Almost zero scientists of any significance, few or none of the high end CEOs that actually move the business world along, few or no activist women of any kinds, few of the ethnic minorities that make the country distinct and creative, few people you would call moral leaders.  There are few or none of the poor or the working class.  But there definitely are an awful lot of corporate drones and businesspeople and what one might call the white trash element of contemporary suburbia.

  •  Our economy HAS become infomercialized (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    noelcor, NoMoreLies

    In the sense that infomercials are about getting people to place an order rather than making a product that fills a need, our financial sector went exactly that direction in the last ten years or so, and the crash of 2008 was the inevitable result. Never mind whether the ab roller actually does anything useful (or even lasts a week after delivery);  if you can get people to buy it, you are a winner. Once you get the money, move on to selling your next space-saving hanger or whatever. Same with credit default swaps, collateralized debt obligations, and even the stock market to a large extent. It's what you can persuade people to give you money for... usually not money they earned, of course, but money they had to borrow. or steal. That's success as the Republicans define it.

    The idea of people working together (in a worker-owned customer-centric industry, for example) to produce results that improve life for everyone is so... so... European.

  •  I couldn't have put it better myself. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FarWestGirl

    I've been thinking the same things for quite a while.  The Republicans have descended wholly into delusional territory, and at this point it seems like there's no way back for them.

    Q: What's the difference between a Republican and a mentally incompetent sociopath? A: I don't know.

    by mvanier on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 05:21:30 PM PDT

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