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Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Religion of Evil

Mother Jones gives us plenty to think about today:

The leader of a 12,000-member congregation, Parsley has written several books outlining his fundamentalist religious outlook, including the 2005 Silent No More. In this work, Parsley decries the "spiritual desperation" of the United States, and he blasts away at the usual suspects: activist judges, civil libertarians who advocate the separation of church and state, the homosexual "culture" ("homosexuals are anything but happy and carefree"), the "abortion industry," and the crass and profane entertainment industry. And Parsley targets another profound threat to the United States: the religion of Islam.

In a chapter titled "Islam: The Deception of Allah," Parsley warns there is a "war between Islam and Christian civilization." He continues:

"I cannot tell you how important it is that we understand the true nature of Islam, that we see it for what it really is. In fact, I will tell you this: I do not believe our country can truly fulfill its divine purpose until we understand our historical conflict with Islam. I know that this statement sounds extreme, but I do not shrink from its implications. The fact is that America was founded, in part, with the intention of seeing this false religion destroyed, and I believe September 11, 2001, was a generational call to arms that we can no longer ignore."

If you've ever wondered why we should fear a McCain Presidency, this is why. The same elements backed George W. Bush in 2000 and 2004; now McCain has thoroughly bought into their rhetoric. He doesn't say so openly, but he's been courting the support of pastors like Parsley and I doubt that he could ditch them if, somehow, they helped him get elected as President.

With respect to the so-called "war on terror", this is one of the groups of people who support the Bush administration's current policies. Parsley, Hagee, et. al. believe that Islam and Christianity are on a crash course, and that both are duking it out for supremacy amongst the world's religions. This hooey is exactly the sort of thing that we don't want influencing foreign policy. In the Bush administration (and, I believe, in a McCain administration) it would. And, precisely because Republicans are running out of safe harbors. As independents and moderate Republicans are fleeing the sinking ship that is the Bush administration, they're also stripping the party of its moderate elements. What's left is a mixture of the religious nuts (anybody who believes in a global war with Islam is nuts), gung-ho Iraq war supporters, and various elements of big business who profit from these schemes.

Just this week there is another "moderate" who's jumping ship -- admiral Fallon. The administration has also gone to great lengths to both deep-six the NIE that stated Iran wasn't anywhere close to having a nuclear weapon and a report out this week saying that there were no connections between Hussein and Al-Qaeda. All of these are bad signs; they point in the direction of a Bush administration bent on forging ahead with its policies come hell or high water.

As I commented a few posts below, the only thing that may have a chance of helping Republican electoral chances in November would be a war with Iran. Could such a thing still be in the works? It's been hinted at over and over again that a conflict with Iran is in the pipeline. Every time, however, there's been some voice of moderation that's gained the day and prevented the U.S. from going to war. I hope we don't run out of those voices, because the combination of religiously-fueled anti-Iranian sentiment and oil interests and whatever it is that Cheney is thinking is a lethal mix that will further destroy our country. This presidency can't be over fast enough. And, McCain can't lose fast enough; I don't think we can afford to take chances with him considering his bedfellows.

And so I continue to be apprehensive -- these are not good signs. I feel a bit better about the chances of a Democrat winning the White House in November, but I don't feel well at all about a.) a victory by McCain, b.) the Republicans still in Congress (who are increasingly indebted to the same people being courted by McCain), and c.) what the Bush administration will do between now and next January.

Andrew 2:31 PM : |


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