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April 15, 2005

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» Frist Gets Ready To Go Along With People Who Suggest Those Who Oppose GOP On Judicial Nominees Hate God from The Moderate Voice

Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist has reportedly now not only decided on the "nuclear option" on filibusters but he is [Read More]

» Why Does the Left Hate God? from Larvatus Prodeo
In the wake of the Terri Schiavo controversy, the new front in American politics is the battle over the Courts. While previous arguments for "strict constructionism" have probably not set the Republican base afire, a new round of rhetoric claiming that... [Read More]

» High Noon for Will Kane from Tom Watson
Joe Gandelman is a reasonable man. Indeed, his blog is aptly named The Moderate Voice. Throughout the vitriol of the fall campaign, Gandelman stayed close to his values; he stayed on the track of the middle path, the center lane [Read More]

» High Noon for Will Kane from Tom Watson
Joe Gandelman is a reasonable man. Indeed, his blog is aptly named The Moderate Voice. Throughout the vitriol of the fall campaign, Gandelman stayed close to his values; he stayed on the track of the middle path, the center lane [Read More]

Comments

I'm wholly offended that anyone in Congress would suggest anyone else is less Christian than they are.

i'm sure Christ had something to say about people like that.

"If the Federal Judiciary is comprised of a bunch of liberal activists, it is the GOP who put them there."

Well, I assume by the standards of today's GOP, Nixon was a liberal( tho Rehnquist is ok, I guess) and Reagan, tho almost a conservative, was hampered by a Democratic Congress. Bush I no better than Nixon. So they did not appoint actual "conservative" judges.

When the Senate Majority Leader uses language like that, I think it becomes fair to connect the GOP to the Christian Reconstruction crew.

So they did not appoint actual "conservative" judges.

They got who they got given the place and time and under the rules as they existed. What more could anyone ask for?

What more could anyone ask for?

Edward, you don't want to know the answer to that.

Well, we are seeing the real face of the current incarnation of the Republican party.

Quibble: The Faust I'm familiar with (maybe more Goethe's than Marlowe's) was a scientist who sold his soul for knowledge and skill and good stuff like that. Surely there's something from Hawthorne that would be more appropriate.

The Faust I'm familiar with (maybe more Goethe's than Marlowe's) was a scientist who sold his soul for knowledge and skill and good stuff like that.

I disagree. He wanted knowledge but wasn't willing to work for it. There was nothing "good" about his quest in that sense. It was an arrogant belief in his own superiority, just like the Senator's.

Nicely done. You are cited in today's installment of Armageddon on the Potomac Thank you.

Faust is a tragedy. Frist, to my mind, is not a hero who will be brought down by a tragic flaw. I think you want more of a dark comic comparison, like Moliere's Tartuffe.

Not only are the courts dominated by Republican appointees, but the true activists on the courts today are the most extreme conservatives--Scalia, Thomas, and their ideological fellows on the lower courts.

I'm very curious as to what our right-wing ObWi posters think of this.

Merging one's political future with religion ought to be fraught with peril. The Christianity that is espoused by the Dobsons and Robertsons of the world is Old Testament Rules & Regulations Wrath of God stuff (yes, I know that "Old Testament Christianity" is an oxymoron -- that's another discussion). Those folks have made it very clear that there is Right and there is Wrong.

On the one hand, if Frist is a man of conviction, certain that holding up these 10 judges' appointments is an "act against people of faith," then he should appear at this rally and proudly take his place next to the others who make that claim. Of course, this also means -- it seems to me -- that his every action is now open to direct comparison with the religious tenets being espoused by Dobson et.al. It's not just acceptable, but actually good reporting to place scripture next to the text of any bill he supports, any speech he makes, any legislative action he takes. I also think his personal life becomes fair game, because Right Wing Christianity believes that the laws of this country ought to directly reflect God's Laws. So, if Dr. Frist swears, commits adultery (and remember how easy that is to do, according to Jesus), cheats on his taxes, or lies about any little thing -- it should be a deadly serious matter, and grounds for his removal.

(No, I'm not kidding. This is the language used by the Right Wing Christians (I don't know what else to call them) when talking about "the left;" it should be equally, or even more harshly applied to anyone who specifically stands with them.

On the other hand, if Dr. Frist wants the votes of the people who are putting on this rally, but doesn't want to be associated with every little thing they preach, then he is equating Christianity with labor unions, or peace protesters, or civil disobedience groups -- or any other organization that a politician might court without wedding him/herself to a rigid list of viewpoints.

And that should make Right Wing Christians angry.

The hypocrisy is getting so deep that my hip boots aren't going to be enough.

"as a liberal Christian, who believes Christ would be very strongly opposed to Congressional efforts like the bankruptcy bill, the shock-and-aweing of Iraq, and nonstop exploitation of religion for political gain, I'm wholly offended that anyone in Congress would suggest anyone else is less Christian than they are"

You may be offended, but I doubt that many fundamentalists would consider you "less Christian" - for them, that could be likened to "less pregnant". You are or you aren't and you can probably guess what category they would put you in.

Most of them want more hard right judges to deal with two issues - abortion and homosexuality. Strangely, Jesus did not say a word about either. Given that he was perfect, this could not have been an oversight. How do they explain that these are their top two mega issues, but their Man was not interested?

A little background on my comment that tying your political future to Right Wing Christianity should be "fraught with peril." Here's some scripture (Old Testament, of course, though the same sentiment can be found in the Epistles):

“And if one person sins unwittingly, then he shall offer a she-goat a year old for a sin-offering. And the priest shall make atonement for the soul that errs, when he sins unwittingly, before Jehovah, to make atonement for him; and he shall be forgiven. You shall have one law for him that does anything unwittingly, for him that is home-born among the children of Israel, and for the stranger that sojourns among them. But the soul that does anything with a high hand [presumptuously – KJV], whether he is home-born or a sojourner, the same blasphemes Jehovah; and that soul shall be cut off from among his people. Because he has despised the word of Jehovah, and has broken his commandment, that soul shall utterly be cut off; his iniquity shall be upon him” (Numbers 15:27-31).

I hope they are all leading pure and sinless lives.

How can one sin unwittingly? Isn't there intentionality at the heart of sin? Or are we talking about "sin" in the sense of say eating a pork sausage thinking it's beef?

How can one sin unwittingly? Isn't there intentionality at the heart of sin?

Oy. I don't even want to get into "Man is saved by grace alone" territory of Saint Paul. But if I were to:

The "problem" with any theory of being saved by grace alone, given from god above and offering you the round trip to your pre-destination of choice, is that those who believe they are pre-destined believe they can perpetrate whatever righteous hooey they would on the lesser rest of us.

Not to tie into an earlier ideal world versus a real world view embodied in the Platonic concept of government only by the aristos, the philosoper kings, but if I did: I would say the righteous elect have no problem doing what they do because it is god's will, blah, god has chosen us for this noble work, blahdy, blah, and hey you just better deal with it. Blah, bladhy, blah.

You could say Frist believes he can do what he wants because the strains of justification by faith alone run strong in him and so his soul is saved, so what he does with it doesn't matter. That of course presumes he has a soul to begin with.

Rant over. Out. Thank you.

Comparing Frist to Faust flatters Frist.

(Hey! I made a new tongue twister!)

But it does, really. Frist has fancied himself one of the Elect from way back. His book, "Good People Beget Good People: A Genealogy of the Frist Family," was a tome on the virtures of being lily-white and wealthy.

So, we now have a cat-torturing neo-Confederate and a corrupt megalomaniac leading the charge for a new Inquisition. These two are the GOP's leaders, for pete's sake, not some low-rank anonymous staffers or fringe nuts kept carefully out of camera range.

Can we now dispense with the polite fiction that the GOP is anything but deeply, deeply anti-American? Can we finally call a spade a spade and acknowledge that the GOP is a clear and present danger to the country?

rilkefan,

I think the issue being dealt with here is very much like eating pork by mistake. In fact my Jewish Publication Society bible translates verse 27 as "And if one person sin through error.." The procedures prescribed are in contrast to those when the entire congregation does it, prescribed in the preceding section, which begins, "And when ye shall err, and not observe all these commandments..."

Remember that the sin involved is failure to observe a commandment, and that there are 613 commandments, many of them being ritual acts having nothing to do with day-to-day moral behavior as we think of it. It was easy to make a mistake.

And when ye shall err, and not observe all these commandments...
The problem for The Heretik is only getting 599 out of 613 on a good day. On a bad day . . .. well let's just say that would be the day the villagers would gather the wood together for my barbeque. Oy.

Now back on topic, this discussion has been positively talmudic! If we are lucky, the Madonna will stop by with Kaballah strings. Won't that be nice?

Now more on topic, Frosty the Fristman must be stopped. Not that I want to hear him go all Margaret Hamilton on us like in The Wizard of Oz, Wicked Witch wise .. . . .
oh . . . . no . . . I'm . . . . melting . . . .
But then again . .

"How can one sin unwittingly? Isn't there intentionality at the heart of sin? "

No. Original Sin is probably the canonical example.

"Can we now dispense with the polite fiction that the GOP is anything but deeply, deeply anti-American?"

Easy, tiger. There are many members of the GOP, present company included, who are nothing like what you've described. And I would say even the worst elements, which seem tragically to coincide with the leadership, are simply foolish, opportunistic, and selfish.

As a matter of ethics, I think it's best to be honest about the sins of your enemies, and as a matter of political expediency, I expect you'll get more traction with the less overwrought version.

Easy, tiger. There are many members of the GOP, present company included, who are nothing like what you've described.

ditto.

Isn't there intentionality at the heart of sin?

Depends who you ask. Traditionalists would say no, but progressive theologians would probably say yes.

Traditionalists would say no, but progressive theologians would probably say yes.

And this, too, depends on the historical period in which you ask the question. Chrysostom would say 'yes' (iirc) and Augustine 'no'; Bernard 'yes', Heloise 'no'; etc.

A lot depends on whether you accept Augustine's rather reductive argument for original sin.

"How can one sin unwittingly? Isn't there intentionality at the heart of sin? "

No. Original Sin is probably the canonical example.

But note that Original Sin is a purely Christian idea. The meaning of "sin" varies across religions. In the Jewish context it is any violation of divine commandments. Hence, as the quoted passages suggest, it may be unintentional. Indeed, on Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, Jews confess to a broad range of sins, whether they recall committing them or not.

Original Sin? You mean, there's only just one?

I thought original sin was more of a fundamental flaw that in itself doesn't count against you per se but that will get you in the end - hence newborns don't go to hell. Anyway, sorry about the diversion of the thread. As atonement, here's a link to John Cole's burgeoning anger.

I still think this is rhetorical overkill for simply the "nuclear option." I am nearly willing to wager that Frist and compatriots do not have the votes in the Senate. So:

A) This is to put heavy pressure on Swing Senators

B) To prepare the country for the ugliness to follow;If I know Robert Byrd he will probably choose to stay on the Senate floor and not stop talking til he dies there.
The outrage of Senators being told:

"You have only the privileges we the majority allow you to have, no more or no less. And we can adjust those privileges at whim."

should not be underestimated. It is true, a supermajority of US citizens and representatives could return us to race chattel slavery, through constitutional amendment. Being told that only power rules, that Republicans are practitioners of Miletian Politics(perhaps only when they want or feel a need to),
makes civil society no longer possible.

c) If they do not have and cannot get the votes, and I believe this to be the case, my suspicion is that the House intends to send jurisdictional-limiting bills to the Senate. When DeLay/Hastert send the bill saying that no Federal Court may rule on abortion or gay marriage/civil unions to the Senate Floor, then we really get ugly.

"And I would say even the worst elements, which seem tragically to coincide with the leadership, are simply foolish, opportunistic, and selfish."

I have no idea what this means.

It's mere coincidence that Frist and DeLay have lined themselves up with 'the worst elements'? The GOP leadership has no idea what it's allying itself with?

It's like those speeches and fundraisers at the CCC, or the recent "Remedies to Judicial Tyranny," where the GOP had no idea who these people were or what they were saying, and certainly doesn't want anyone to think the GOP actually supports any of it?

I am also a disgusted with Senator Frist's attempt to try to tie in the filibuster issue with the religious right agenda. I'm a registered Democrat but I am also a born again Christian, and I'm infuriated with these conservative narrow-minds who seem to think that unless we believe the same way they do then we're not really Christian. How dare they!! There are millions of Americans who believe in Jesus Christ who don't go along with their brand of politics.

But to me there's an even greater issue here and that's the filibuster itself. Our constitution establishes the checks and balances in government for this very reason, i.e., to assure that there is a consensus in the policy making process as each branch of government does its job. The President has the power of the veto; the judicial courts have the power to overturn lower courts' judgments. So why should the minority party in the legislative branch of government, those who are chosen to represent the views of the people, be forced to silently stand by and watch as the dominant party forces its agenda with nothing and no one to stop them? This is an outrage! Republicans thought nothing of eliminating the filibuster when it served their purposes during the Clinton administration. And what's going to happen when they find themselves in the minority? Or are they so arrogant as to think that they will always remain in the majority? Perhaps they haven't thought that far ahead.

The majority of evangelical Christians did not support the Republican abuse of power in the Terri Schiavo case as they assumed they would and neither should we support them here. This is not a religious issue. The filibuster is an integral part of our political process and Christians and non-Christians alike should stand strong in defending it.

I thought original sin was more of a fundamental flaw

As so often here at ObWi, Tom Lehrer can help you figure it out,


"Get in line in that processional,
Step into that small confessional.
There the guy who's got religion'll
Tell you if your sin's original."

Suppose they pass a law saying no federal court can rule on abortion or gay marriage. A state court then rules in a way they don't like, and because of their jurisdiction-limiting law the decision can't be appealed. What's left at that point? Lynchings?

I really worry about the actions of people who have a Hell-based theology and know, somewhere deep down, that when you square their stated beliefs with their actions, that's where they're going. What do they have to lose?

TOT (totally OT, not time-over-threshold): Edward, did you see this Bolton story?

Just a couple of thoughts on this post and previous comments.

A wish to hear what conservative ObWingers have to say about this phenomenon has been stated. I think all of them have made clear their views on this over the past months, so I won't presume to answer for them. But, by degrees, I don't think they are real pleased with the current rhetoric.

However, I think we are past the time when liberals must apologize (Sidereal's objections) about describing these elements of the Republican Party as deeply unAmerican. This view can be stated and should not be taken as a blanket condemnation of all Republicans, the religious, or individuals here.

The fact remains, however, that the grand alliance forged by the Republican Party between the low or no tax, puny government libertarians on the one hand and the religious Right on the other (I know they bleed into each other) has provided a slim majority mistaken as a mandate by both wings of the Party.

The Republican Party would not run all three branches of government without both wings and it's about time that fact, is at least admitted by those leaning in the libertarian direction.

No James Dobson; well then, Ayn Rand continues in the wilderness. That Ayn Rand is not at least a little appreciative of James Dobson is .. a lot of things, but let's call it a blind spot.

My point: Frist and those he is pandering to in this instance are deeply unAmerican in my view. I no longer care that the rest of the Republican Party is personally insulted by that opinion.

If you don't like it, fix it. Although I remember not being able to fix a certain President's fixation on oral pleasure in the oval office, so I understand the difficulty.

Some of the Religious Right are intentionally sinning against me and my government, and my country. I plan on doubling up on the intentional sin right back at them.

It's a war. I plan on winning and salting the earth the enemy stands on.

But don't take it personally.

Why does this rabid minority of Americans think that they will be the ones standing if the rule of law is destroyed? Catholics, in particular, have had a long enough experience with the religious zealots that power the war against laws. Unfortunately, the experience was that of being victims of the KKK, not one that is likely to persuade Catholics to side with them.

I am outraged by the comments of Senator Frist, but I also think that he is mostly showing us how politically stupid he is. If he were as brilliant as he fancied himself and if he really wanted to be president, he would not start a war against the Constitution. I think that Rove is losing his touch. Let these enemies of the state speak up. Let us all see that DeLay and Frist are traitors and need to be run out of DC. Let everyone see how little they care about America. Then we can and must stop them.

"Suppose they pass a law saying no federal court can rule on abortion or gay marriage."

KC, Complicated and unclear in both theory and practice. I got this by googling "limiting federal court jurisdiction" talking about HR 3313 of 2004. There is a lot more. Of course the recent statement from DeLay about Marbury vs Madison is directly on point. See praktike guestblogging today at Kevin Drum's place(go dude!)

HR 3313 Hearings

rilkefan: that's the sort of story I'm reluctant to accept as a basis for anything absent some knowledge of the person writing it, or even whether or not it's a genuine letter. (I mean, I have no reason to think it isn't, but still.) What worries me is that while there are all sorts of people who I'd never believe any such thing about -- I mean, if, say, the letter described similar behavior by Condi Rice, I'd dismiss it instantly -- Bolton is not one of them.

Frist is revolting. Stuff like this always makes me wonder what, exactly, the person in question thinks God makes of it all. I mean, He was none too pleased when people started using the temple as a shopping mall; why would he react well to being dragooned into the service of the GOP? If you believe in God, it sort of goes without saying that He's not a smart person to anger, and thus that one should be careful about invoking Him in contexts like this. I wouldn't have thought He'd like it much.

And I am perfectly happy, now, about saying that the Congressional Republican leadership is unAmerican these days, not that that's a charge I like throwing around, what with its history and all. But assaults on the Constitution are beyond the pale, in my book.

hilzoy, right you are about spreading rumors - this should have left enough of a trail to be traceable if true, so we'll see.

I would guess that Frist thinks he's acting for the good of his party, his country, and his religion, all of which have entirely aligned interests. Heck, if I believed in something and found myself in a position of great power and was an idiot, I might well think the same. Can you come up with anybody who might have begged him in the bowels of Christ to ask himself if he could be wrong?

This is as bad as it can get in modern American politics - at least until it gets worse.

Harry Reid's statement. Perfect:

I am disappointed that in an attempt to hide what the debate is really about, Senator Frist would exploit religion like this. Religion to me is a very personal thing. I have been a religious man all my adult life. My wife and I have lived our lives and raised our children according to the morals and values taught by the faith to which we prescribe. No one has the right to judge mine or anyone else’s personal commitment to faith and religion.

God isn’t partisan.

As His children, he does ask us to do our very best and treat each other with kindness. Republicans have crossed a line today. America is better than this and Republicans need to remember that. This is a democracy, not a theocracy. We are people of faith, and in many ways are doing God’s work. But we represent all Americans, regardless of religion. Our founding fathers had the superior vision to separate Church and State in our democracy. It is a fundamental principle that has allowed our great, diverse nation to grow and flourish peacefully. Blurring the line between Church and State erodes our Constitution, and our democracy. It is a blatant abuse of power. Participating in something designed to incite divisiveness and encourage contention is unacceptable. I would hope that Sen. Frist will rise above something so beyond the pale.

rilkefan: the thing about invoking God in a context like this is that if you believe in Him, you believe that He is a person, with a mind of His own, who might or might not like the uses you put His name to. I would have thought that before ever invoking His name like this, one would really worry about His views on the matter, and would err on the side of caution; just as you would think twice before claiming that another human being was on your side, only more so.

Stuff like this always makes me wonder what, exactly, the person in question thinks God makes of it all. I mean, He was none too pleased when people started using the temple as a shopping mall; why would he react well to being dragooned into the service of the GOP?

Why does God hate America?

"Who Would Jesus Bomb?"


- Bumper sticker in car in rural Missouri, seen 3/25/05.

according to the morals and values taught by the faith to which we prescribe.

Tell me he didn't really say that...

As His children, he does ask us to do our very best

Ugh... if the country is ready for civil unions, surely it's ready for inclusive language as well. After a decade in a progressive church, all those male pronouns for God are like nails on a chalkboard.

Hilzoy, Re:I would have thought that before ever invoking His name like this, one would really worry about His views on the matter, and would err on the side of caution

That would apply to a saint like Saint Francis of Assisi or maybe Mother Theresa. Frist is more an American Crusader. With god so evidently on their side, Crusaders rarely ask questions. Nor do they ever err on the side of caution. See Iraq.

Mother Theresa was pro-crusade from what I hear.

The 'prescribe' thing killed me, too. Don't Senators have editors? Otherwise, strong statement. Not easily spun, which these days is about the only thing that matters.

Re. the Bolton letter via DKos.

True or not, don't you y'all think Bolton, Delay, and Rove, and now Frist would use the same tactics against anyone who stands in their way, including you guys and your children?

I know there is a very good case to be made for not being like them, but do you want to have principles, or do you want to win, even if it means bombing Dresden?

Metaphor. Were I a Christian of the sort driving the far Right Republican machine, it wouldn't be.

"at least until it gets worse." I take no joy in reporting to you that it will.

These folks mean what they say, despite shills like Frist who put us off by their facile insincerity.

"Mother Theresa was pro-Crusade from what I hear."

Hitchens book is out of print. Any clues on where I can get it.

O.K. But I maintain that Zeppo Marx didn't have a sense of humor.

Go.

What did Reid mean instead of "prescribe"? "Subscribe" comes to mind but that can't be right.

JT, I wrote that "until it gets worse" sentence you quote and then thought, I'm [insert some Shirley McClaine verb here instead of "mediuming"] John Thullen."

Rilkefan:

Shirley McClain (sp?) always seemed to medium famous historical figures from the past.

You at least have some modesty when you medium.

Projecting? Teleprompting? Aping?

"Channeling"

Those, too. Heck, mocking even.

Hey, my apocalypse ends with a few tears, tissues handed around, and whaddya say we play some pickup baseball?

There's plenty of room for poetry, too.

Thank you for saving me from madness, Gromit.

JT, I have tears and tissues aplenty (bad sinus-spiking cold), but I have no depth perception as a result of childhood eye problems and am unable to catch anything in three dimensions (much to the occasional delight of friends with baseballs).

got your inclusive language, right here, from our unrepentant apostate of a minority whip:

"Our debate over the rules of the Senate and the use of the filibuster has nothing to do with whether one is religious or not," Senator Richard J. Durbin, Democrat of Illinois, said at a news conference with Senator Harry Reid, the minority leader from Nevada. "I cannot imagine that God - with everything he has or she has to worry about - is going to take the time to debate the filibuster in heaven."

Proofreading aside, Reid's statement was lovely.

I have a longstanding vendetta against the Family Research Council, going back to the Massachusetts Constitutional Convention last year. When they're not saying disgusting things about hate crimes victims, they're pushing pseudoscience articles about the link between homosexuality and pedophilia. This is the group whose immediate response to 9/11 was to lobby to deny any federal survivor benefits to the gay partners of people who were murdered.

They are just about the last people on earth who should be accusing anyone of bigotry or wrapping themselves in the mantle of the civil rights movement. But what else is new.

He wanted knowledge but wasn't willing to work for it. There was nothing "good" about his quest in that sense. It was an arrogant belief in his own superiority, just like the Senator's.

Not sure I am following you here, at least if you're talking about Goethe's Faust. The point is that Faust has read every book and studied every discipline, thus he definitely worked for it, yet realizes that his knowledge is still inadequate. Realizing the limits of his book learning he turns to nature, "life", black magic and the devil. His whole journey is fueled by a feeling of inadequacy and longing, and while there is a certain element of hubris and egocentrism involved, it is also a story every modern thinking man or women should be able to relate to in one way or another.

relevant excerpt here

Why is the Family Reseach Council a 501(c)3? They're more political than the ACLU.

"Channeling?"

Mother Theresa was pro-crusade from what I hear?

A crusade of the heart and soul is far different from a crusade of the hand with a weapon of war in it. Crusade is a term dropped into conversations by Bush, Boykin, and other bozos as they clown their way through a region of the world they little understand.

That mindset works its wacked way through the domestic front as well. That mindset, a wholeclothe from hell, would tear this country apart, thread by thread.

It could drive you crazy, Rilke lover and almost draw even the most sane of us to madness. Such is not the case for you. You have a great voice I enjoy hearing over here. I enjoy hearing everybody over here. Thank you very much.

Sorry, Edward, the entire leadership of your party is supporting efforts to undermine the constitution of this country. You support them, therefore you support their treasonous efforts. So, yes, Edward, YOU are unamerican. Sorry, but the moneyed interests of Germany supported the Nazis for their other views and not the Jew baiting, but they're just as culpable as the rest.

carpeicthus
I really worry about the actions of people who have a Hell-based theology and know, somewhere deep down, that when you square their stated beliefs with their actions, that's where they're going. What do they have to lose?

By and large, people either paint layer after layer of denial, or accept the inevitable and become generally more wholesome people once damnation is a certainty rather than a risk.

Sorry, Edward, the entire leadership of your party is supporting efforts to undermine the constitution of this country.

Drive-by trolling? Ignorant slander? Subtle gibe at Edward's closet Republicanism? The house is taking all bets!

Anarch, I think it's just that the entire English language has been driven to shrill, unholy madness. This leads naturally to some confusion.

Edward: Senator Bill Frist is joining a chorus of right-wing extremists next Sunday to attack liberal Christians

This attack is not only or even primarily on liberal Christians. It comes in the middle of Passover, and is clearly designed to heighten anti-Semitism among the fundamentalist right-wing Christian base. This attack on the very concept of an independent judiciary is the ugliest, most anti-Constitutional behavior by a Senate majority leader in my lifetime.

Sorry, Edward, the entire leadership of your party is supporting efforts to undermine the constitution of this country.

note to self: check moonbat repellent expiration date.

Subtle gibe at Edward's closet Republicanism?

Have you no decency sir?

Anarch, that's only funny because it's true. I do have latent Republican tendencies. I consider it my Patriotic duty to fight them though.

This attack is not only or even primarily on liberal Christians. It comes in the middle of Passover, and is clearly designed to heighten anti-Semitism among the fundamentalist right-wing Christian base.

Interesting.

I'm not saying your wrong, Nell, but I think it's interesting that we both see it as an attack on separate groups.

I'm not saying your wrong, Nell, but I think it's interesting that we both see it as an attack on separate groups.

I see no contradiction. To the type of fundamentalism in question here, those who are not of one's particular and narrow flavor of Christianity are the Other. Jews (who tend to be fairly liberal overall) and liberal Christians are the Other. Like the Republicans who thought there was nothing shamelessly tasteless about holding their convention in New York to exploit the anniversary of 9/11, Frist could simply be taking advantage of timing to kill two birds with one stone.

Catsy,

From what I've heard, Bush agreed to have the RNC in New York as a favor to NY (because we needed the money). He may have wanted to exploit 9/11 as well, but it couldn't have been his first choice overall.

"This attack is not only or even primarily on liberal Christians. It comes in the middle of Passover, and is clearly designed to heighten anti-Semitism among the fundamentalist right-wing Christian base."

Hmm. I see that more as a sign of utter cluelessness, and the extent to which the talk about our Judeo-Christian heritage is a fraud. It has nothing to do with real respect for Judaism and everything to do with making Christian theocracy sound more benign and ecumenical than it really is...I cannot tell you how little every Jewish person I have ever met wants to do with the Family Research Council, Tom DeLay, etc. They remember how recently they got into the in-crowd and they are sure they will be dropped from the in-crowd in nanoseconds when it becomes convenient (witness the whole Passion of the Christ thing & the whole Jewish plot to ruin Christmas thing.)

But I don't see the timing of this as an attack on Jews as Jews--I bet they had no clue when Passover began.

Perhaps I'm being naive here. They don't attack Jews as Jews so often, but they do attack northeastern, secular, highly educated, liberal "elites", the universities, the media, Hollywood....

The point is that Faust has read every book and studied every discipline, thus he definitely worked for it, yet realizes that his knowledge is still inadequate.

Yeah, I'm talking about Goethe here, and my German professor drilled that opening monologue into my brain, so I'm quite familiar with it.

The way I always say it though, Faust, having "done" philosophy, law, medicine, and even theology, was in a position to then push further, with the knowledge/skills/abilities he had been given by God, to benefit all. He got impatient though (a sign of arrogance)

I’m cleverer than all these teachers,
Doctors, Masters, scribes, preachers:
I’m not plagued by doubt or scruple

In other words, he knows what's best, he won't suffer the fools around him, and he wants to move forward faster than the current system will let him (parallel to Frist, who feeling he knows better than his colleagues [like McCain], and feeling frustrated by the current system (fillibuster, etc.), he wants to move faster.

I may not be a perfect analogy, but it works for all that IMO.

Katherine,

apparently a Rabbi shares Nell's assertions here.

The one thing I know about fundmentalist Christians, having grown up in a fundagelical church, is they believe eventually they are the only ones doing it right. Once the secular folks are legislated into submission, they'll turn their attention on other religions...this you take to the bank. It's their spiritual duty to convert the nonbelievers.

It may not be a perfect analogy, but it works for all that IMO.

Also, you would lose the alliteration if you didn't use Faust!

Also, you would lose the alliteration if you didn't use Faust!

Thank you!!! And then what would be the point at all?

Reason # 92752 to despise the Family Research Council:

DEATHS from cervical cancer could jump fourfold to a million a year by 2050, mainly in developing countries. This could be prevented by soon-to-be-approved vaccines against the virus that causes most cases of cervical cancer - but there are signs that opposition to the vaccines might lead to many preventable deaths.

The trouble is that the human papilloma virus (HPV) is sexually transmitted. So to prevent infection, girls will have to be vaccinated before they become sexually active, which could be a problem in many countries.

In the US, for instance, religious groups are gearing up to oppose vaccination, despite a survey showing 80 per cent of parents favour vaccinating their daughters. "Abstinence is the best way to prevent HPV," says Bridget Maher of the Family Research Council, a leading Christian lobby group that has made much of the fact that, because it can spread by skin contact, condoms are not as effective against HPV as they are against other viruses such as HIV.

"Giving the HPV vaccine to young women could be potentially harmful, because they may see it as a licence to engage in premarital sex," Maher claims, though it is arguable how many young women have even heard of the virus.

via the even-madder-than-I-am Amanda Marcotte.

So you see, the Family Research Council has as much right to portray itself as pro-life as it does to portray itself as anti-bigotry.

Why do Republicans put up with their leaders crawling into bed with these people? Why? I'm sure 99% of the commenters here disapprove, but they're going to keep doing it until they pay a political price.

I think the person who attacked Edward's Republicanism was confused (as I was) when Edward said "ditto" to sideral's post when sidereal said (paraphrasing) that not all Republicans are bad and that even the worst aren't quite as bad as people are saying here.

Okay, I just confused myself. Anyway, Edward, are you a Republican? Obviously if you are you are one of the good ones, but from my visits here I thought you were fairly far to the left (which is a good thing in my book). I took your "ditto" to mean that lefties shouldn't lump all Republicans into the category of evil creatures from hell, but I'm not quite sure if that's what you meant. I'm moderately sure about not all of them being blood-sucking perversions created by Morgoth for his own dark purposes, mainly because I don't take the Silmarillion literally.

I should note, that HPV is an especially useful disease for the Family Research Council, because condoms are not very effective against it and because there's a high rate of prevalence among gay men. Just look at all the fabulous press repeases you can get out of it. I mean, an HPV vaccine--why, it would be the biggest blow to our country's morals since the anti-retroviral cocktails started interfering with God's plan to punish homosexuality with the cruellest, most painful disease & death imaginable! Maybe the worst blow to our morals since penicillin!

um. perhaps I should take a walk.

Katherine, that's just horrifying, shocking.

So vaccinate boys, and tattoo them so in later years women can check. Actually, just mix this into the standard vaccines. Hell, measles can be sexually transmitted, can't they?

Anyway, Edward, are you a Republican?

No. I am a Democrat. Dyed-in-the-wool.

I have been, on occassion, accused of leaning over the center into the Right side on some issues. To that I plead guilty. I've also been called "loony left" and worse. To that I plead "I got your 'loony left' right here moonbat!"

I've also been accused of empathizing too much with right-wing folks (especially when the target of my empathy is seen as incapable of empathizing in return). Where I come from, trying to understand someone else's POV is the hallmark of liberalism, though, so I"m not sure where those accusations lead.

I took your "ditto" to mean that lefties shouldn't lump all Republicans into the category of evil creatures from hell,

That's exactly what I mean. Most Republicans are very decent people. Most in fact are folks I enjoy the company of and would be very pleased to have as neighbors. There are a few extremists I'd be happy to have vanish into thin air, if only to set the "Left Behind" freaks all a-titter, but very few actually. I believe in progressivism and believe it works best as a push-pull march forward, requiring conservatives and liberals to ensure as few people as possible get trampled.

Having said that, the liberals in this country need some serious backbone.

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Whatnot


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