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The other day while walking in a parking lot heading for a grocery chain, I saw in big bold letters on the back window of a pick-up truck these words: PHIL ROBERTSON FOR PRESIDENT. Not only does this crazy old coot have a religious following, he also has (apparently) convinced some of his admirers that he should politically lead our country.

Now I am aware that there are people who are limited in knowledge when it comes to the art of thinking or just don't have a clue as to what Critical Thought is all about but GOLLY GEE, Phil the Duck Robertson for President of the USA… That's one big barrel full of Bat Sh*t NUTS!



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Comment Preferences

  •  Christianists give Christians & Christianity a bad (7+ / 0-)


    I voted Tuesday, May 6, 2014 because it is my right, my responsibility and because my parents moved from Alabama to Ohio to vote. Unfortunately, the republicons want to turn Ohio into Alabama.

    by a2nite on Sun Jun 01, 2014 at 07:50:36 AM PDT

  •  Your title infers (6+ / 0-)

    that there is more than one kind of Christian in our country. That may have been true many years ago. But now the haters own the brand.
    I was raised Lutheran, and that sect has been in decline for decades. There just  aren't that many German-Americans any more. And the Lutherans never seem to fight back against the Robertsons and Falwells- in fact they have their own ultra-rightists in the Missouri Synod.
    The big old Christian denominations just stood aside and let the fundamentalists take over the brand. They were to chickenshit to stand up for true Christian values, and they lost.
    They lost me a long time ago, and now I regard the word "Christian" as just another fellow travelling term, next thing to a...well, to a Dixie style hate group.
    Robertson sure don't surprise me, he speaks for mosts Christians now.

    I buy and sell well trained riding mules and American Mammoth Jack Stock.

    by old mule on Sun Jun 01, 2014 at 08:07:46 AM PDT

    •  recced for "haters own the brand" (3+ / 0-)

      so much more apt than "no true Scotsman"

    •  I disagree. (0+ / 0-)

      Whether or not you're a person of faith, the fact is that Sojourners and what its founder Jim Wallis have fought for over the past 40-50 years is consistent with New Testament Christianity.  Wallis lays out the biblical mandate for a "servant" government in Conservatives, Liberals, and the Fight for America's Future.  He's probably the best known but there are many more just like him living their faith, actually putting their bodies on the line in acts of civil disobedience to protest the injustices being perpetrated on the marginalized.

      The haters just have the bigger microphones and an endless flow of money coming from people who don't give a rip about religion or social issues but need an army whose fears and prejudices they can manipulate for their own ends.  

      Ironically, the most public haters and propagandists do tend to pretty regularly self-destruct in spectacular ways, which is why we've seen a rise in atheism and agnosticism, and why a good many megachurches are seeing empty pews.

      Just as some of Fred Phelps's kids escaped to tell the truth about him, more and more kids/adults raised in fundamentalist homeschooling cults are exposing the underbelly of that sick beast.  The inherent misogyny of fundamentalism and the resulting abuse of women and girls is also finally getting more exposure.

      The aggressive attempts to turn us into a "Christian" nation are scary and require constant vigilance, but they also carry the stench of desperation.  The haters will always be with us but the ability to marshal them in sufficient numbers will continue to be compromised by the mean-spirited hypocrisy on constant public display.  

      It's said that we carry within us the seeds of our own destruction, and hubris is always their downfall.  Which is fitting:  IIRC, that's what got Lucifer cast out of heaven.

      A person may cause evil to others not only by his actions but by his inaction, and in either case he is justly accountable to them for the injury. - John Stuart Mill

      by penelope pnortney on Sun Jun 01, 2014 at 12:53:50 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Hmmm.... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        penelope pnortney

        I don't see fewer people adhering to fundamentalist churches, I see in my time that it has moved from the south to suburbs and huge megachurches all over America.
        More homeschoolers by far- in this rural area that trend has nearly finished off our tiny public school. At homeschool there is not need for racial harmony or love of country, quite the opposite.
        I pay attention to the role of the church in our country, it's not good at all. Christians in general regard the government as an opressive enemy who wants to destroy them. They denounce anything the government tries in the way of a safety net... as individuals, but also as congregations.
        Of course there are kind Christians who follow Christ's teachings, but as far as I can see they are a tiny and silent minority. I don't blame them for not wanting to get into fights with gun carrying rednecks in the streets, but can we not hear from the leaders of the old denominations once in a while?
        If they head of (for example) Lutheranism in America is silent about gun deaths, what am I to assume? They seem silent in the face of all the Christian hate cults.

        Oh well, that's life, I guess.

        I buy and sell well trained riding mules and American Mammoth Jack Stock.

        by old mule on Sun Jun 01, 2014 at 03:00:46 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I don't disagree with you. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          old mule

          I keep a pretty close eye on this, too, and my conclusions, right or wrong, come from what I read here and there and recent polls I've seen.  This is such a virulent strain of extremism, like the superflu of religions, and it's so intrusive into the public square that it can sometimes seem more pervasive than it is (it's pervasive enough in either case).  Kind of like the extreme gun nuts who are driving the agenda, even though the majority of Americans have more reasonable positions on gun ownership.  

          Cults flourish in the darkness, and to the extent that survivors of fundamentalism break loose and go public, as many of them have, the public at least has a chance of seeing this kind of extremism for what it is instead of the benign phenomenon of most people's imagination.  

          And the more the extremism is exposed to the light of day, whether it's of the gun ownership or the religious variety, the more it will alienate those who, however ultraconservative, aren't actual sociopaths.  

          At least that's where my optimism and basic faith in humanity leads me.

          A person may cause evil to others not only by his actions but by his inaction, and in either case he is justly accountable to them for the injury. - John Stuart Mill

          by penelope pnortney on Sun Jun 01, 2014 at 07:36:26 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  By the way (0+ / 0-)

          Just got Bad Religion by Ross Douthat.  Looks like it will be a good read.  

          A person may cause evil to others not only by his actions but by his inaction, and in either case he is justly accountable to them for the injury. - John Stuart Mill

          by penelope pnortney on Mon Jun 02, 2014 at 07:22:35 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  The one trait (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Matt Z

    that I've found in common in all segments of Christianity is: pointing fingers at other Christians and calling them "Not True Christians!"  

    There is ample evidence in the Bible itself, not to mention the writings of the Church Fathers, to show that this has been going on since the very beginning.  Jesus said "by their fruits you will know them" (or something to that effect); I have come to see this as the single defining trait that allows one to identify a Christian.

    I watched  Duck Dynasty until the whole Phil scandal came up (I thought it was funny- the show, not Phil's bigotry).  One thing that struck me was that Phil was the most sincere person on the show.  He was/is a nasty bugger, but he does live what he believes, as best one can tell from a scripted reality TV show.  And he has no plans to enter politics, he wants his son Willie to do so.

    190 milliseconds....

    by Kingsmeg on Sun Jun 01, 2014 at 08:15:38 AM PDT

  •  The stupid has been allowed to take over, (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Vita Brevis, Sylv, Calamity Jean

    and it's a bit unnerving to watch it unfold.

    The GOP will destroy anything they can't own.

    by AnnieR on Sun Jun 01, 2014 at 08:18:39 AM PDT

  •  There Is No Such Thing As Christianity (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I have long referred to what most people call Christianity as Paulism.

    •  But it's not Paulism. (0+ / 0-)

      (except for some of the social stances Paul took). Paul's Christ is NOT what the RCC settled on as the savior figure. Paul's salvation was not acted out on earth. That's why he never referred to the Jesus biography, even when using material from it would have bolstered his arguments. There was no biography in Paul's time because it hadn't been invented yet. There were Christ cults that had no relationship to what people think of as Christianity now.  Read The Jesus Puzzle by Earl Doherty.

  •  The best article I've read recently (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    craiger, G2geek

    about this subject is this December 25, 2013 entry at "The Archdruid Report":

    No further comment is necessary.

    •  John Michael Greer is brilliant. (0+ / 0-)

      To be clear, I don't agree with everything he has to say in The Archdruid Report. For example he's opposed to nuclear power and space exploration, and I firmly support both.  

      But his analysis of societal trends and the belief systems underpinning them, is spot-on.  

      Druidism, as with Wicca, is an oldschool pagan religion that seeks divinity in nature.  Greer is the founder of one branch of Druidism in the USA.  While all of that may seem archaic to rationalists, Greer's social critiques are well-grounded.

      Definitely worth reading.

      We got the future back. Uh-oh.

      by G2geek on Sun Jun 01, 2014 at 11:04:11 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Well here we go again (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lrganassi, alx9090

    trying to define Christianity.  The basic problem is this... the whole religion is based on a set of allegorical mythologies with a main character plucked from Old Testament writings and greek philosophies cobbled together by a power hungry institution which made claims of the actual existence of a man for whom there is no credible evidence ever having walked this earth. The sayings and deeds of this fictional character often clash with each other (harsh judge vs. benign community organizer) and so will never be resolved.

    And 2 thousand years later we are still fighting over this stuff and haven't figured out yet that these stories belong on the mythology shelf right next to the stories of Zeus, Thor etc.  

    It's one of the most ludicrous things going on in human history and current events.  For every other issue we demand evidence, but for this???... uh, not so much.

    Time to move on.... PLEASE!

    •  mysticism must necessarily cede ground (0+ / 0-)

      to rationality.  When the mystics want to reclaim authority, they resort to force and coercion. That is what I object to, personally.

      •  And it's not just the fundamentalists (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        who do this.  Our own President in his stances on cases involving religion in government sides often with coercion.

      •  incorrect definitions lead to faulty conclusions. (0+ / 0-)

        You're using the term "mysticism" incorrectly.

        Definition: the branch of religion and philosophy that is concerned with direct personal encounter with the deity or ground of being, unmediated by scriptural or clerical authority.

        Atheists are of course free to omit "deity" and the rest of it still hangs together.  See also Einstein's quote to the effect that "a person who does not understand the sense of the mystical is effectively dead to the world", and Einstein's quotes to the effect that he had "no belief whatsoever" in the Abrahamic deity and "no use" for the Abrahamic religions.  Einstein was at once an atheist and a mystic.

        The word that rationalists are usually seeking when they mis-use "mysticism" is "mystification."

        Definition: making mysteries where none exist; obscuring facts.  

        Both of these words have a common root with "mystery," a puzzle to be pondered and solved.  The difference is that mystics engage in contemplation, and mystifiers engage in hocus-pocus.  

        Mystics are at the opposite end of the religious and philosophical spectrum from fundamentalists, who by definition believe in the literal truth and authority of scripture.  In general, fundamentalists find mystics evil and "fair targets" for violence, and established churches find them a major annoyance that is occasionally met with forceful suppression.

        You will not find mystics engaged in resorting to force, nor engaged in resorting to coercion.  However you may find them engaged in peaceful civil disobedience on the side of compassion, mercy, and justice.

        So please let's stop using the M-word as a form of deprecation.  That's not a whole lot different to using the word "witch" as a form of deprecation.  "Witches" are adherents of Wicca, a pagan religion that seeks divinity in nature.  Adverse stereotypes of mystics and of witches, are as harmful as adverse stereotypes about Jews and Muslims.  One can also promote atheism and agnosticism without having to resort to bigoted language against theists of whatever denomination.

        Rationalists especially!  If our definitions are wrong, the conclusions that follow are also wrong.

        We got the future back. Uh-oh.

        by G2geek on Sun Jun 01, 2014 at 10:59:58 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Religion OK, up to the point it became organized. (0+ / 0-)

    At that point it's just another selfish power game.

    For those who tout their "Christian" values and their "morality" and how it can exist only because they are "Christian" I'd have to ask. If you were behaving in a "Christlike" way, why must you counteract your main man's guidance and publicly boast so brazenly?

    It's about like FOX claiming to be fair and balanced. If it were, they wouldn't have to convince you they are.

    Increasingly, the only thing religion has left to justify itself is that it provides cover for people who want to have bigoted, selfish beliefs but want to believe they are good people anyway.
    "You don't need religion to have morals. If you can't determine right from wrong, then you lack empathy, not religion."
    Conservatives: "Ravenous predators masquerading as a political party of small government, fiscal restraint and moral piety." –Bill Moyers
    Modern Conservatism isn't simply about them owning as much as possible; it's also about breaking anything they can't own. - ontheleftcoast
    "The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness."  - John Kenneth Galbraith

    I think that Republicanism is revealing itself as a personality disorder, not so much an ideology." -- Naomi Klein

    by AllanTBG on Sun Jun 01, 2014 at 03:33:48 PM PDT

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