Sep 04 2011

So Many Fundies, So Little Time

Hey everybody. Since I haven’t posted any new posts here in a quite a few days, I felt like I should post something explaining why.

For people familiar with my writing, you know that most of what I write, particularly the stuff about the Christian nationalist history revisionism, requires a lot of research. So, when you don’t see me posting for a while, you can just leap to the conclusion that it’s because I’m busy researching something.

Right now, I’m buried in research on the so-called “Black Robe Regiment,” the latest initiative of pseudo-historian David Barton to recruit pastors to register lots of right-wing voters at their churches. And, guess what I’m finding. Barton is basing this whole Revolutionary War era “Black Robe Regiment” notion, which he claims was a widespread movement that needs to be revived by today’s pastors as the new “Black Robe Regiment,” on a single use of this term by one person. It shouldn’t surprise anybody that Barton’s version of the story — that “the British actually blamed the black regiment for American independence” — is wildy exaggerated, to put it mildly. To see what Barton is claiming, just go visit his new Black Robe Regiment website.

Debunking Barton’s “Black Robe Regiment” claim is part of the research and writing that I’m doing for Volume 2 of Liars For Jesus, which I’m currently trying to finish after having to put it off for over four years because of my job with the Military Religious Freedom Foundation (MRFF), which, as you can imagine, also takes up a lot of my time.

With everything that I need to get done right now — the book, my MRFF work, launching my podcast, and starting this new blog — I decided that I had two options: either juggle a few things or end up in a rubber room incoherently babbling about the threat of Christian nationalism instead of actually doing something about it.

So, to preserve what’s left of my mental health, my decision was that finishing Volume 2 of Liars for Jesus needs to come first, but my job with MRFF is equally important, so I obviously have to have time to do that while finishing the book. What did that leave? Launching my podcast and really getting this blog going. That’s what’s going to be pushed back a little bit.

Rather than put out a half-assed podcast just to launch it by the end of the summer as I had planned, I’m going to delay the launch, just for a little while, so I can do it right. In the meantime, what I’ll be posting about here will mainly be things that come up in the natural course of my history research and other work, including previews of Volume 2 of my book.

So, please bear with me for just a little while longer as I juggle everything so that I can launch something kick-ass rather than something half-assed.


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  1. 1

    Chris, you continue to do the work and we’ll continue to read it. Is there some Poe’s law type equivalent that accurately describes the amount of time it takes to refute revisionist bullshit. If not, there should be. Something along the lines of “the amount of type it takes to refute Christian revisionists is exponentially proportional to the amount of time it takes them to spout their bullshit”

    I don’t know how you find the time to keep up with them.

  2. 2
    Pierce R. Butler

    Please find a way to work in multiple allusions to a “Monstrous Regiment” – even if Shirley Dobson ends up as its only representative…

  3. 3

    Chris I think you have the correct priorities. Your most valuable task is educating re-educating the public so they can scrub the tarnish of Barton’s counterfeit history from their thoughts.

    My free advice, and we all know what thats worth, is to ignore this blog until you have a flash of inspiration while doing your other projects.

    Is there anything myself or others in your posse could do for you? An idea may be for you to assign articles or books to read and then have one of us write a synopsis for you? It may be our help is more time consuming for you than going on alone.

    Keep up the good (and necessary) work and thanks.

  4. 4

    I think your writing is great and your coverage of this topic is bar-none. If it takes you time to research before you write, then by all means, make us wait.

  5. 5

    I think you’re doing a good job, Chris — thorough research is a great way to make your posts valuable, and honestly I have enough to read every day.

    Make them good, make them strong, and your blog is one I’ll always pay attention to.

  6. 6
    Chris Rodda

    Thanks for the support, guys. I figured that this was a place where people would understand that research takes time. ;-)

    Someone on my Facebook page, where I’ve frequently been posting about how nuts I am right now because of trying to get the book finished, summed it up perfectly yesterday with this: “Out of the scattered scribblings and seemingly chaotic notations where resides raw reaserch, emerges the proud brilliance of the finished work.”

    @ Pinky … Your second thought on me getting people to help me was correct. It would take longer for me to explain to someone else what I’m looking for than it would for me to find it myself. So much of the stuff for my book is in my head that nobody else would be able to even figure out why I have certain articles and books saved in my files, let alone find what I’m looking for in them. Some of my files and notes for Volume 2 are over five years old — stuff I saved and wrote down way back in 2006 when I decided to split the book into multiple volumes. Even I’m having trouble remembering what some of my old notes meant, so there’s no way anybody else is going to be able to decipher them!

  7. 7

    I plowed through LFJ V.1 and even made a post on my crap blog about it. Loved the work and scholarly research.

    Please make V2 as solid as the first and you’ll gain even more readership! V3…cant wait


  8. 8

    Good luck. Getting a book out of your system definitely has to come first. I just finished (well as long as they don’t want any more cuts) writing a textbook – I still keep looking at all the scribbles and notes trying to figure out what to do with the rest of it. I think of mine as the Damocles Albatross. So – Excellent work and good luck. I too am looking forward to V2.

  9. 9
  10. 10

    Remember that patience is a virtue. And, quality not quantity. And…. wait a minute, starting to feel like Ben Franklin.

    I’m glad to see you here.

  11. 11

    Oh, Chris, you’re pretty kickass no matter what you do. Perhaps you can post excerpts from Volume I here while you complete Volume II.

    Just a thought.

  12. 12

    I waited patiently for Volume 1 and I will wait patiently for volume 2 which will definitely be kick ass because I don’t believe you could do anything less.

  13. 13
    Chris Rodda

    So people here know, Ellie was one of the people from the old AOL message boards who talked me into writing a book way back in 2003, which is when I started writing what ended up being Volume 1 of Liars For Jesus, so she’s seen the kind of craziness that I’m in the midst of right now once before ;-)

  14. 14

    Ah….good times. :-)

  15. 15

    NO, NONO! I demand that you put all that other claptrap aside and post multitudes of one paragraph articles here for my commenting pleasure! Do it now!

    Or, keep doing the great job you’ve always done. See if I care.

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