The Inquisition Tentacles Are Spreading.

I’ve written about Ralph Drollinger before. He’s one scary lunatic christian, and he wields way too much influence in the current regime. He’s crowing again, over all the “progress” he’s making. It’s as well to remember that Drollinger’s idea of progress is to bring back the inquisition or something like.

Ralph Drollinger, who runs fundamentalist Bible studies for dozens of members of Congress and President Trump’s Cabinet every week, said in a fundraising letter this month that his group “has been blessed by God with extraordinary growth beyond our wildest imaginings in foreign nations across the globe and most notably in former Soviet Bloc countries.”

[…]

We noted last fall that Drollinger is aggressively expanding his operations both at the local government level in the U.S. and in national capitals around the world. His April 4 letter includes some details about the latter:

In the last few months discipleship Bible studies have been established to Parliamentarians in Romania; Ukraine; Fiji; Papua New Guinea; and the Republic of Equatorial Guinea. A ministry is about to begin in Guatemala, and before fall, we expect work to be completed for ministries in the Central and South American nations of Peru; Ecuador; Brazil; Mexico; Uruguay; and Paraguay, as well as in the European city Riga, Latvia.

Work is current an ongoing with partners to establish discipleship Bible studies in Berlin and Bonne [sic]. We are enthusiastically pursuing an opportunity to plant a ministry in the European Union Parliament, a body of 600 Parliamentarians from 26 Western and Eastern European nations who meet two weeks every month in Brussels, Belgium and one week every month in Strasbourg, France.

We thought the Lord did not want us in the Middle East, but to our great surprise discussions are currently underway to establish a ministry in a Muslim majority nation in the Middle East.

[…]

Although Drollinger is quick to complain about news coverage he believes is unfair, his letter says a story published in a German newspaper helped attract new friends. And Capitol Ministries has been gushing about a recent BBC story that the group says “reached more than 1 million readers world-wide.”

I have no idea why people might find Drollinger favourable in any light, but even if you are one of the lucky people who lives in a happily secular nation, this should be worrying. Drollinger is naturally courting regressive governments, but there are always regressive asses in any government, and they are likely to listen to Drollinger. I fail to see the charm, and it’s beyond disturbing that Drollinger is not simply being dismissed. Just to give you an idea of what Drollinger wants to institute, as far as government is concerned:

Drollinger’s April 13 Bible study says it is a “disservice to the country” for public servants to “craft policy that is not somehow rooted in Scripture.” Here are some of the other theological and political positions Drollinger teaches public officials:

Drollinger likes to tell reporters that he doesn’t instruct public officials how to vote, but he makes it clear in his written Bible studies that, for example, Christian public servants are required to support the death penalty and oppose marriage equality.

Drollinger also has very specific views on the role of women: “there is a prohibition of female leadership in marriage, and female leadership in the church.” One of his Bible studies explains what he calls the “unambiguous” difference in responsibilities the Bible gives men and women, saying women’s “primary functions” include homemaking, home management, mothering, teaching younger women, displaying hospitality and dressing modestly.

There’s much more, RWW has the full story.

Behind the Iron Curtain part 3 – Religion

These are my recollections of a life behind the iron curtain. I do not aim to give perfect and objective evaluation of anything, but to share my personal experiences and memories. It will explain why I just cannot get misty eyed over some ideas on the political left and why I loathe many ideas on the right.


Today’s Czech Republic is one of the most, if not the most, atheist countries in the world. I encountered people both in meatspace and on the internet who “blame” the former totalitarian socialist regime for this. Mostly such people are coincidentally also people who assign to this godlessness all kinds of moral failings of today’s Czechs and blame their lack of faith for exceedingly high divorce rates, crime rates etc.

When one looks at the actual data though, none of this does fit. Today’s Slovak Republic was under the same regime in the former Czechoslovak Socialist Republic, yet Slovaks are much more religious. Not to mention Poles, who are almost 90% catholic until today. The crime rates etc. are similar in these countries, only abortion rate is very low in Poland – but only because it is mostly illegal and inaccessible, during the socialist regime when abortion was legal, Poles used it at a rate that was not out of the ordinary for the time.

So my (lack of) religious experiences as a child were not to be ascribed only to the regime, but at least partially they were. It was complicated.

The regime was in fact overtly anti-religious. Priests were poorly paid state employees and private donations to churches etc. were not legal to my knowledge. Being religious was not illegal per se, but it was not encouraged either and there were some obstacles put in the way of exercising beliefs. Like all official religions had to register with the state and there were some specific religions and religious sects that were illegal (like Jehovah’s Witnesses).

My grandfather was a devout catholic asshole on whose grave I do not spit only out of respect for my father. My father became disillusioned with religion early on and possibly as an act of rebellion against it he entered the communist party at the age of 18 and was banished by my grandfather as a consequence. My father is the only atheist in that branch of the family. After I was born and my grandfather became deadly sick, my mother and father took care of him in his last years. Grandfather has obliquely acknowledged the child abuse he inflicted on my father, but he never apologized to him directly, only indirectly by saying to my mother that he wronged him yet he is the only one who cares for him on his sickbed. He died before I was old enough to know him.

So I grew up in an atheistic family and went to public school in a regime that did not acknowledge any religion as true and only reluctantly allowed people to exercise some religious beliefs.

At home, religion was never spoken about and I never felt the need to ask about anything. We had plenty of books and I was an avid reader, so I knew about the existence of religions and mystical figures. I feared the devils from fairy tales despite never believing in their real existence. Similarly I knew christian God also only as a fairy-tale father figure granting favors for good deeds. It was not before ten years of age that I learned that there are still people who really believe in Christianity, including in my family. Until that age I thought it was all over, a thing of the past just like Zeus and Hera. After I learned that my favourite auntie is religious, I was completely flummoxed and to this day I never broached the subject with her.

At school, there was some talk about religion in civics, history and literature classes. In fact a very good overview of the development of religion from polytheism to monotheism in Europe from Classical age through Middle ages to Modern era. I do not remember any overt hostility towards any religion during the lectures, only dry information about them and an occasional argument that proves false some specific claim. Later on I learned that religious parents could send children to a sort of sunday school, but I never knew anyone who did so.

Even the christian creation myth was taught – as a myth. And the gorgeous movie La Création du Monde was aired on TV and I loved it as a child.

All in all in my opinion the regime did a good job informing children about religion but did discourage indoctrinating them with any. However I do not think the Iron Curtain played exquisite or even major role in it because Czechs as a whole were seemingly lukewarm about religion for centuries. Which, again, is a different story.

What Does A God Need With A Government?

Seems there’s a group, or organisation or something called Intercessors for America. So, a bunch of people praying, but praying apparently is not enough anymore, no. People need to vote, because Jehovah needs a government!

“You probably know the midterms are coming up,” Kubal said. “We believe God desires to align His watchmen alongside these candidates. Intercessory activism is not about mixing the role of the church with the role of government to create some form of spiritual nationalism, it is all about proper alignment between God’s people and government … God created government to punish the wrong and protect the right, [but] a government cannot know what is wrong or what is right without the church.”

Erm…so you’re not about mixing up church and government, you’re about mixing up people in the church and government, do I have that one right? Jehovah created government? Huh. Okay, just the Amerikkan version, or all governments? If it’s all governments, which one is best? Perhaps it’s just me, but I think you’re confusing the justice system with government.

“Intercessory activism is the correct alignment between God’s people bringing His values to our government,” Kubal added. “We are in a specific season where we can ask God to move greatly through the authority of our government. This is really important, this is kind of the crux of what I am talking about. In the past few years, we have prayed defensively for protection from our government, but now we are in a season to pray offensively to see great advances of the kingdom of God to be advanced through our government.”

I’ll give you credit for some grand bafflegab there, Mr. Kubal. So Jehovah has to work through the authority of the government? I guess bureaucratic red tape swallows everyone. Once again, I’m struck by the christian vision of a god, such a weak little critter, unable to do one damn thing on its own. From a christian point of view, there’s no fun at all in being a god, just another powerless being adrift on the seas of life. Tsk. I’ll be making offerings to all the art gods later this day, any one of which could whip Jehovah’s poor, powerless arse.

Kubal said that it is imperative that conservative Christians use the elections to connect with candidates with the goal of implementing “kingdom values through relationships to our government” and utilizing “the U.S. government to have His kingdom come, His will be done on earth as it is in heaven.”

Yeah, y’know, I’d think an all powerful god could push its agenda through without having to “utilize” anyone or anything. Interesting that you basically admit that all the intercessory crap is worthless.

The full mess is at RWW, with video.

And a bonus today, in the category of silliest damn prophecy ever: Prophecy: Paramedic Angels Dispatched.

Sunday Facepalm: All Ya Need Is Nice.

thirddrawerdown.com.

Star Parker, yet another conservative idiot, has decided on her defense of guns in the wake of the last school shooting. Those darn students weren’t nice enough to the shooter! We don’t need gun control or any sort of reform, no. What we need is niceness! We are all responsible for every dude walking around with a growing grudge, a tantrum, and a gun. You betcha. As to blaming the students:

“Well, not necessarily one individual student, but we can call for gun control if we want to as a nation, we can call for more federal laws if we want to as a nation, but usually when you’re faced with tragedy, you first check yourself,” Parker said. “We have forgotten how to just look inwardly. We’ve become such a nation of victims that we’ve forgotten to say, ‘Wait a minute, what could I have done?’”

[…]

“Well, perhaps said ‘hello,’ perhaps said ‘I’m sorry to hear your dad died,’” Parker said. “This is a very small community of people we’re talking about. This is not the responsibility of Washington, D.C., or the NRA. This is the responsibility of people that are closest to someone to be able to look them in the eye as an individual. So the challenge of this whole nation of victims is that now it’s not about us anymore, it’s about somebody else, our problems are somebody else’s fault. Well, no, actually, this is a very small community, someone must have saw his sadness, someone must have known his dad died.”

Ms. Parker didn’t listen to the students talking. Ms. Parker certainly didn’t listen to Ms. Emma Gonzalez, who pointed out, strongly, that they knew that kid. They knew what he was like. They knew his desire for violence, his propensity for cruelty. They did speak out, they tried to tell people, they tried to warn people, but no one listened well enough to what they had to say, and now a lot of kids are dead. Sometimes, reaching out to a person can make all the difference in the world, but simply being ‘nice’ isn’t enough to reach anyone. If you’re going to extend ‘nice’, it needs to go further than that; and there are people you can’t reach in any way. The shooter in this case was primed to go off for years, but it was ignored by everyone except the students. The students wanted to know why people like his neighbours ignored him wandering around with a fucking gun. How about you answer that one, Ms. Parker? I would have loved to see you walk up to a kid wandering about with a gun and be ‘nice’ to him.

[…]

“Well, they expelled him probably because he was acting out,” she said, “and he was acting out probably because he didn’t have any friends—you know, whoever sat next to him in class, they’d better not be the ones who are protesting out there today.”

They expelled him because he was a danger to others, you fucking idiot. Sitting next to someone in class does not make you friends, and friendship is not a one way street. Christ, I loathe conservatives.

The whole mess and video is at RWW. In other, depressing news, the Dominionists of the Theocalypse have descended on CPAC, all of them staying at the Trump Hotel to sing their praises to the Tiny Tyrant. You can read the whole sorry thing here.

Another NO: Religious Tax Exemption.

Focus on the Family has posted a tax return on its website that declares that it is a church, but has not filed the return with the government.

Focus on the Family has posted a tax return on its website that declares that it is a church, but has not filed the return with the government.

I’m just about to head out for chemo, but this caught my eye, and this should be a huge, furious NO NO NO – no more tax exemption for religious anything. Most ‘churches’ have more money than 10 gods combined, this is not something they need, especially when they constantly violate the rules of the exemption. The latest to join in the tax free haven religion provides is Focus on the Family, James Dobson’s little hate group.

…The IRS’s master database of tax-exempt organizations, last updated on February 13, also indicates that Focus is listed as a church that is not required to file a 990.

Focus on the Family declaring itself to be a church is puzzling. While the Colorado Springs-based organization has somewhat softened its image since it was led by the firebrand Dobson, it remains active in political debates and advocacy (even in a nominally nonpartisan way). A “social issues” section on the group’s website currently features information on a supposed threat to bathroom safety posed by transgender people thanks to LGBTQ activists fighting in politics, churches and popular culture, and contains an update on “cultural issues in the courts.” In June, Focus invited Vice President Mike Pence to speak at an event celebrating its 40th anniversary, where he promised the group it had an “unwavering ally” in President Trump.

Gail Harmon, an attorney who has advised nonprofits on tax law for more than 30 years, said that she had never before seen a nonprofit organization declare itself a church. “I just found it shocking,” she said.

“There’s nothing about them that meets the traditional definition of what a church is,” she said. “They don’t have a congregation, they don’t have the rites of various parts of a person’s life. There’s a whole system for what a church is.”…

You can read the whole thing at RWW.

Raising A Government For A Nonexistent God.

Capitol Ministries' February 13, 2018 fundraising dinner at the World Ag Expo.

Capitol Ministries’ February 13, 2018 fundraising dinner at the World Ag Expo.

Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue has joined Ralph Drollinger in his quest to raise the Jehovah government, not just here, but globally. Granted, this effort will go much further here in Amerikka than elsewhere, which is bad enough. It seems the department of agriculture has now turned into a giant “hey, cough up money for gawd! We have to get this religious reich going!”

All the conservative christian lunatics are in on this, stumping away god and guns and every other evil.

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue and former Rep. Michele Bachmann were the featured speakers at a Tuesday evening fundraising dinner for Capitol Ministries, the group that sponsors weekly Bible studies for members of the House and Senate and President Donald Trump’s Cabinet. Also offering testimony on behalf of this “special type of ministry” was Rep. Jeff Denham, whose relationship with the group goes back to his days in the California legislature. The show was emceed by Frank Sontag, a Los Angeles-based Christian radio host who voices the audio versions of the written Bible studies that Capitol Ministries publishes every week.

Hundreds of people packed an event tent at the massive World Ag Expo in Tulare, California, the heart of the state’s agriculture industry, to hear Perdue, Bachmann and Capitol Ministries’ founder and leader Ralph Drollinger. Tulare is a reliably Republican area of the state, now represented in the U.S. Congress by Rep. Devin Nunes, a local boy from a farm family. At the event, tables were sponsored by wealthy farming families and an array of agriculture-related businesses, along with Bank of America and local branches of Wells Fargo.

[…]

Some sponsors may be supporters of Capitol Ministries’ mission of encouraging public officials to embrace conservative Christianity. Some may have bought tables based on personal and professional connections to Capitol Ministries board member and event host Rob Hilarides, who heads a dairy operation in the area. Some may appreciate Drollinger’s teachings that “God is a capitalist” and that because of excessive environmental regulations in the U.S., “the economic benefits God intends from private property ownership have been greatly diminished.” And some may have given to express support for the Trump administration’s rollbacks of regulations governing their industry.

Perdue told Capitol Ministries’ sponsors that he is “the beneficiary” of their “investment,” saying he hoped the Capitol Ministries fundraiser would become an annual event. Perdue talked about how God had guided his life and career moves, from the time God told him to give up his veterinary practice and go into agribusiness to his election as Georgia’s first Republican governor. Like Bachmann, Perdue gave an altar-call-like pitch for people to give their lives to God.

[…]

Drollinger is on a mission to recruit public officials at all levels of government to his conservative version of Christianity and his particular fundamentalist interpretation of the Bible. Part of Drollinger’s pitch for his ministry is that Religious Right groups have spent too much time lobbying public officials to change laws. Capitol Ministries focuses instead on “the most influential component in the legislative process: the people who make the decisions and create the statutes.”

Drollinger says he doesn’t lobby, but he does instruct public officials that the Bible mandates adherence to right-wing policy positions on a wide range of issues, including environmental regulation, the death penalty, abortion, LGBTQ equality and more. He says it is the government’s job to quell evil and punish sin. He teaches that care for the poor is meant to be a job for the family and church, not the government, and that entitlement programs have no “biblical authority.” And he says that once “righteous” people hold positions of power in government, they should hire only other “righteous” people.

Drollinger’s efforts should wake everyone up, they are terrifying, and unfortunately, effective. He has a great deal of influence on capitol hill, and like most christian lunatics, his views are that the way things were in Medieval age are splendid, and we should go right back there. He has no use whatsoever for christians who go all Jesus, or think things like compassion and care have a place in life:

Drollinger is not particularly open to other interpretations of scripture. He has called Roman Catholicism “one of the primary false religions in the world.” He has written that liberal Christians are “simpletons.” In a September 2017 Bible study, he wrote that the Social Gospel, a major strain of American Christianity in the 20th century, is a “perversion” or “corruption” of biblical teaching, and “not Christianity whatsoever.” As for Christians in Congress who do not share his conservative theology and right-wing politics, Drollinger wrote, “I believe the biggest deception on the Hill today is this: the religion of the Social Gospel proffers itself as being ‘Christian’ when it isn’t even close to being biblical.”

Last July, Drollinger warned public officials, “Do not be deceived by syncretistic ‘prayer breakfasts’: God only hears the prayers of leaders and citizens who are upright, who live righteously through faith in Jesus Christ.”

This is a man who is fully in favour of an inquisitorial government, in spite of his hate for the catholic church. He’s very much an inquisition and crusades kind of guy. The article at RWW is in-depth and link heavy, lots of important reading there. If liberal/moderate christians find such efforts to be repulsive, you have to stop being milquetoasts on the sideline, shaking your heads. You need to stand the fuck up, and put this effort down. Time to roar. Naturally, all us godless/religionless folk need to roar our faces off, too. This all starts with awareness, so go read, become aware, and start yelling.

The full article is at RWW.

What A Load of Shit.

Dozens of protesters have gathered outside a London cinema to protest against the cancellation of a screening of a film advocating therapy to "cure" people from being gay.

Dozens of protesters have gathered outside a London cinema to protest against the cancellation of a screening of a film advocating therapy to “cure” people from being gay.

This is a larger River of Shit than what’s been pouring from me the last two weeks.

The British anti-LGBTQ group Christian Concern is getting some press this week after a London theater cancelled a screening it helped organize for a new movie focusing on people “who are emerging out of homosexual lifestyles.” The movie, “Voices of the Silenced,” was promoted in an email this week by the Alliance for Therapeutic Choice, the parent group of the “reparative therapy” organization NARTH.

A 2016 trailer for the movie, produced by the UK group Core Issues Trust, compares those who advocate “ex-gay” therapy and their allies in other fields to enslaved Jewish people in the first century:

‘Voices of the Silenced’ remembers the Jews ripped from Jerusalem in AD 70 and brought to Rome to quarry stone and build the Colosseum. They were now the property of their masters. Filmed in seven countries and over 50 locations, our exploration compares the cultural captivity of the Jewish slaves in towns destroyed by the Vesuvius eruption in AD 79 with that faced by those silenced in the 21st century, people under an imposed state orthodoxy which reaffirms the ancient idea of pansexuality.

Oh, go fuck yourselves. Or someone else, then perhaps you could mind your own damn business. If someone wants to play at being hetero, there’s nothing stopping them, it’s not against the law, y’know. That does not cover up your blatant attempts at trying to squash all queer folk down so far you don’t have to think about them.

You can read the full story at RWW.

Anti-Clericalism in Medieval Persian Poetry.

Standford Lecture Handouts.

The above reads:

Better be a beggar than king, better practice vice

And perfidy than be a bigoted, pious puritan;

Better make love with many mistresses in the street

Than make piety and abstinence in public show.

– Amīr Khusraw Dihlavī (d. 725/1325)

I couldn’t agree more.

The dominant attitude of the anti-clerical rhetoric in Persian poetry is permeated by criticism of judges, lawyers, aesthetics, spiritual advisors, and authority figures of that nature. This is one of the reasons that makes this poetry still relevant. A lot of people today can’t read Milton, because anti-clericalism is no longer part of the normal vocabulary. In the West, we live mostly in a secular society, so the conflict between clerics and anti-clerics does not exist. But that is not the case in the Middle East at all, which makes this conflict very relevant.

Dr. Leonard Lewisohn is Senior Lecturer in Persian and Iran Heritage Foundation Fellow at the Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies of the University of Exeter where he teaches Islamic Studies, Sufism, history of Iran, as well as courses on Persian texts and Persian poetry in translation. He specializes in translation of Persian Sufi poetic and prose texts.

This is fascinating, and I learned a great deal. The lecture is below, and the Stanford Lecture Handouts for Anti-Clericalism in Medieval Persian Poetry are here.

Via Medievalists.

Couriers of the Incremental Apostasy.

The Couriers of the Incremental Apostasy.

The Couriers of the Incremental Apostasy.

David Lane, anti-LGBTQ Christian-nation activist, and pro-Trumpist, was extremely upset over CNN’s new year’s coverage. I think there were people having a good time or something. He wrote a rather long email to supporters, most of detailing the horrible effects of that there reefer madness, which can be read here. At the bottom, there’s this bit:

America was seduced in the last half century, not by the Communists, but by Secularism. Unelected and unaccountable judges have nullified a once Biblically-based public education and culture. CNN is a co-conspirator to the mortal sin affecting America. As a result of secularists replacing a Biblically-based culture with Secularism, George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, Robert E. Lee, et al., are no longer advanced as patriots, but decried as backward racists. Their stature is disparaged by fanatical anarchists, such as Black Lives Matter, who deal in the currency of brutality and dissension. Perversion and cultural deterioration are now abetted by spiritually antagonistic network executives and media elites.

Hmm. Everything I can find on Lane has him listed as an evangelical christian, so what’s mortal sin doing in there? That’s a distinctly catholic concept, I know, I heard it about it often enough growing up. At 60 years old now, I have racked up quite the list of mortal sins.

Oh, these people with their biblically-based bullshit. (Marcus has an interesting post up today about the replacement of theology with social Darwinism). Why do you never hear them talk about Jefferson’s happy desecration of the bible into something he felt was palatable? There was never a biblically-based culture here, but there was an attempt at that whole ‘freedom of religion’ business. That’s why there’s never been any official religion in America, unlike other countries which do have an official religion. Secularism was always the culture base here.

Let’s look at that list of people: Washington, Adams, Jefferson, and…Robert E. Lee? Excuse me? How did he get into the presidential lists? I guess you have to get in at least a sideways defense of slavery. Oh yes, that’s right, slavery is biblically justifiable.

The people who make up Black Lives Matter, and their allies, are not anarchists, and they aren’t the ones who are brutal, oppressive authoritarians all dressed up in storm trooper gear, with military hardware, you evil fucker. There’s absolutely nothing at all wrong with dissent. America is nothing but one whole long history of dissent. What about the ‘founding’ revolution? The fact that people were revolting (also known as dissent) seems to get skipped over, time and time again. Your “founding fathers”, those thieves and murderers, started out the colonies due to religious dissent, and those dissenting people almost immediately found themselves the subject of dissent by a slightly different flavour of religious people. And so on. Jesus Fucking Christ, this whole mess called ‘America’ is nothing but one long argument.

Perversion and cultural deterioration is in the eye of the beholder, Mr. Lane. From where I sit, people learning to be accepting of those who have always been with us, rather than carrying on a long tradition of bigotry, hate, and oppression, is a good thing. That’s progress. That’s being socially forward. That’s putting the civil in civilisation. Being inclusive is not the same as “spiritually antagonistic”, it’s recognising that not everyone on the planet believes as you do. But there’s little worse than that to you fanatics, is there? I am so damn tired of seeing the word elites tossed around as if it means something. You never ever stop working, for one second, to bring about your theocracy, where you get to be the ruling body, the ultimate judge, the elite. So it would be nice if you would at least shut the fuck up about that. Oh yes, and as to your “unelected” judges, yeah your pos judges, like Gorsuch weren’t elected either. Might want to have a care there, because if you advocate for elected judges only, things might not go your way. Actually, that might not be a bad idea.

Charisma News’s Steve Strang also jumped on the CNN=evil bandwagon, copying Lane’s nonsense about weed, and adding a bit:

There almost certainly won’t be any further consequences. The reason is that morally debased Time Warner—which owns CNN—and CNN president Jeff Zucker are couriers of incremental apostasy as they pump sensuality, self-indulgence and promiscuity into the nation as it falls into moral anarchy.

Apostasy can’t happen fast enough for me, to hell with this incremental business. So, let’s see if I have this one right: CNN is evil, but grab ’em by the pussy is perfectly moral and good. Got it. Oy. You can read the whole mess at RWW.

Speaking of CNN, Alex Jones is frothing at the mouth over them too, in a more specific way. He’s targeted one Brian Stelter as the face of all evil. Apparently, this CNN correspondent runs everything, and he’s going to ruin everything for everyone. I don’t have television, so I don’t watch CNN and don’t have a clue as to who this person is, or why he’s the sudden target of Jones’s ire. Okay, he’s a 32 year old media correspondent.

While discussing the controversy swirling around Michael Wolff’s new book “Fire and Fury” on his show today, Jones compared Wolff’s smile to Stelter’s and speculated that the two are somehow related. This sparked a bizarre rant against Stelter in which Jones told his viewers that Stelter “wants to control every aspect of your life because he knows he is a cowardly, degenerate sack of anti-human trash.”

Oh, similar smiles! I guess you don’t get better evidence of evil intent than that.

“He runs your kids, he runs the schools, he runs the banks—this guy. This spirit. This smiling, leering devil that thinks you can’t see what he is. He is your enemy, period, all the narcissistic devil-worshiping filth. I see you, enemy. I see you, enemy. Enemy! Enemy! You are my enemy and I swear total resistance to you with everything I’ve got. Disingenuous, fake, false, broke-back, twisted, a defiler, a betrayer, a back-stabber. A devil,” Jones said.

Jones continued, “You will pay. You think I don’t see your face, scum? You think I don’t see you, Stelter? I see you, you understand me? I know what you think of me and my family. I see you right back, you understand that? You understand that, Stelter?”

My, my. That’s a hyperbole overdose and a half. Since this seems to come down to faces, let’s have a look at them:

Screengrab.

Yeah, it’s not hard to decide which face I would gravitate towards, Mr. Jones, and it wouldn’t be yours. You can see the video and read the whole thing at RWW.

Just Say No, Minnesota.

A fine example of christian “logic”.

Michele Bachmann is slithering back into the political scene. Maybe. Just say no, people. Michele was on Jim Bakker’s glurge-fest last week, saying she was considering running for Franken’s vacant seat:

Bachmann said that she has “had people contact me and urge me to run for that Senate seat” and that she is asking God if doing so in His will for her.

Bachmann said that she would be willing to run in order to take godly principles into the Senate but is concerned that she will be unfairly attacked by Washington insiders because “the swamp is so toxic.”

Uh huh. None of this is new, and it’s just amazing how you can sit there and opine on the toxicity of that Washington swamp, given that your hero was supposed to have cleaned that all up. Guess that wasn’t one of the miraculous “accomplishments” of the Tiny Tyrant.

“I trust in a big God,” Bachmann said, asserting that she “was supposed to run for president” in 2012 in order to make the the repeal of Obamacare the central issue of the Republican platform. “I feel like I was wildly successful … I didn’t win, but I moved the debate. So I didn’t shed a tear when I left the contest because I felt like, you know, I fulfilled the calling that God gave me.”

A “big god”. Right. I guess everything has to have a ‘big’ appended to it now. I wish this bit of idiocy would die. All I can think about now is Honeycomb Cereal

Honeycomb’s big…yeah yeah yeah!
It’s not small…no no no!
Honeycomb’s got…a big big bite!
Big big (taste/crunch) in a big big bite!

That almost works if you use ‘god’ instead of Honeycomb. Oh look, Michele thinks she was single-handedly responsible for  the republican upset over healthcare! My my, some people might think that to be a tad arrogant. You didn’t move a thing, Michele. All anyone wanted was for you to shut the fuck up. Pretty sure people still want that.

“So the question is am I being called to do this now?” she added. “I don’t know.”

You don’t know? How is that possible? Your BIG god doesn’t have a BIG answer for you? Lazy slacker god. Or perhaps you aren’t praying enough, Michele. Go away and pray. Please.

Bakker eventually piped in to express his concern about the nasty nature of politics today, saying that “right now, they want to kill the president of the United States and if they could put a contract [out on Donald Trump]—which they probably already have—they would do so.”

Oh FFS, get off this theme already, Jim. It’s dead. Over. Gone. The stupid is too much to bear. You assign every possible evil to this nefarious ‘they’, ‘they’ get away with everything, but y’know, here in gun central, no one can get a contract going. Uh huh. At some point, you need to make an effort to be somewhat coherent, else you’ll even start losing the seriously gullible.

There’s video at RWW.

2017: Rise of the Religious Reich.

President Trump hosts conservative leaders at the White House on September 25, 2017 (Photo: WhiteHouse.gov)

Right Wing Watch has a comprehensive timeline of the ascension of the religious reich into the current regime, and it’s a very ugly look at the coming Theocalypse, if these people get their way, which so far, they are. We do not need to be all concerned over the rise of AI. We do need to be concerned with the rise of the religious reich, and we need to be concerned with the rise of stupid.

Donald Trump wasn’t exactly the dream candidate of the Religious Right. Throughout the Republican primary contest, many in the social conservative movement urged voters to pick what one group of anti-choice activists called “anyone but Donald Trump.”

But once it became clear that Trump was going to win the GOP nomination, he started aggressively courting the evangelical Right, including holding a massive meeting for Religious Right leaders in New York that many cite as a turning point for their support. On the day of that meeting, Trump announced the formation of an evangelical advisory board that included Religious Right leaders including James Dobson and Michele Bachmann. Trump’s selection of Mike Pence as his running mate sealed the deal for many on the Religious Right. Trump’s “amen corner” of prosperity gospel preachers and domininionists eventually expanded to include the large share of Religious Right leaders, who offered various theological explanations for their embrace of a morally flawed candidate.

Once he was elected—with 80 percent of the white evangelical vote—Trump kept his evangelical advisory board intact and promised to give it unprecedented access to the White House. He stacked his Cabinet with friends of the Religious Right, including Tom Price at Health and Human Services, Betsy DeVos at Education and Ben Carson at Housing and Urban Development. Far-right pastor Ralph Drollingerworked with Trump’s transition team to set up weekly Bible studies for Trump’s Cabinet members. The conservative Heritage Foundation and Federalist Society vetted potential judicial nominees.

The White House continues to hold weekly calls with evangelical advisory board members. Conservative leaders also receive a weekly email from the White House compiling “highlights for—and requests for action from—the conservative world.” And Religious Right leaders report enjoying an open door with the Trump administration. Former Southern Baptist Convention official Richard Land told The New York Times that conservative evangelical leaders have a “regular, ongoing and continuing dialogue” with the administration.

The Family Research Council’s Tony Perkinssaid in August, “I’ve been to the White House I don’t know how many more times in the first six months this year than I was during the entire Bush administration.” The Susan B. Anthony List’s Marjorie Dannenfelser said she visited the White House seven times in Trump’s first 100 days in office. Penny Nance of Concerned Women for America said in September, “I’m told from people before me that even under George W. Bush, we didn’t have this kind of access. It certainly is unprecedented and we’re very grateful.” Land gushed about evangelicals having “unprecedented access” to the White House, adding that there “are more evangelicals in this administration as personnel than any administration in my lifetime.”

The timeline is extensive and heavily link rich, there’s enough reading for a day or two. It’s all recommended, because we are at one terrifying confluence here. The Year The Religious Right Moved Into The White House.

It’s Best to Lie! It’s Biblical!

Screengrab.

Coach Dave is teachin’ and preachin’ – about lying. Like lying for Jesus, lying for Jehovah is right good too.

Religious Right activist Dave Daubenmire said that Roy Moore has no obligation to tell the truth regarding multiple allegations that he pursued sexual relationships with teenage girls when he was in his 30s and that, in fact, it is better for him to lie about it if doing so will help to advance the kingdom of God.

Daubenmire, who has been an ardent Moore supporter for years and even interviewed Moore on his program back in 2013, likened Moore’s efforts to become a U.S. senator from Alabama to using misdirection in a football game, employing subterfuge during a military battle or hiding Jews from the Nazis, saying that deception and dishonesty in such endeavors is acceptable because doing so furthers a greater good.

Lying through your teeth about being a skeevy asshole with a taste for teenagers is not the same as strategy, sportsball or military, and it’s certainly not the same as hiding Jews from Nazis. The finely fucked up morals of a christian, right there. (Yeah, yeah, #notallchristians, but you all still aren’t standing up against these fanatical asses.)

“When I hear people say, ‘Well, Judge Moore is not worthy of the office if he’s lying about what he did,’ I want to grab ’em and I want to slap ’em upside the stinking head,” Daubenmire said. “Judge Moore is trying to infiltrate an ungodly system and the stakes in this campaign are so great for the cause of Christ and Judge Moore is being lambasted by the holier-than-thou Christians who think [the Bible] says we can never lie.”

Golly, such language! Tsk. Infiltrate? He’s running for senate, not trying to pass a super secret seal test or anything. Any idiot can run for the senate. You’d think there’d be requirements or something, but no. (You have to be 30 years old, been a citizen for at least nine years, and live in the state you wish to represent, that’s it. That would be why so many lying idiots.)

“It’s best to lie if it advances the kingdom of God,” Daubenmire stated. “There, I said it.”

Yes, you did, and thanks, Coach Dave, for having the spine to admit that, unlike most christians, who believe firmly in lying, but always deny that.

Via RWW, there’s video.

JerUSAlem.

View and Plan of Jerusalem.--Fac-simile of a woodcut in the "Liber Chronicarum Mundi" large folio, Nuremberg, 1493. <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:View_and_Plan_of_Jerusalem_Fac_simile_of_a_Woodout_in_the_Liber_Chronicarum_Mundi_large_folio_Nuremberg_1493.png">Source</a>.

View and Plan of Jerusalem.–Fac-simile of a woodcut in the “Liber Chronicarum Mundi” large folio, Nuremberg, 1493. Source.

RWW has the full rundown on all the christians who have been pushing for the Jerusalem move, and how excited they are over finally having a puppet who gave them what they most desire: the apocalypse. The apocalypse they want so very much won’t happen, but a different sort might, given this unbelievably bone-headed decision. Christians do excel at coming up with batshit nonsense to shore up their position on anything, and this is no exception:

Anti-BDS activist and filmmaker Laurie Cardoza-Moore, reportedly considering a run for Congress from Tennessee, contributed a column to Haaretz welcoming “Trump’s obedience to God’s word on Jerusalem.”  “We as a Judeo-Christian nation have a responsibility to uphold the word of God” she had said earlier this month, urging Trump to act.

Cardoza-Moore told Gordon Klingenschmitt that people often ask her where the United States is in the End Times, and she always tells them, “Look at the English spelling of the word Jerusalem. What are the three letters in the center of that word? U.S.A. … That is our prophetic place to be.”

Oh look, there’s the USA! It’s right there, in another word, must be a god! Only in the English spelling mind, because Amerikan English is the one true language of Jehovah.  I might not mind this bonnaconshit so much if it weren’t for the mind-numbing stupidity. We really don’t need people thinking we are that stupid. It’s so embarrassing.

RWW has the full, depressing story.

ETA: Bannon is also speaking about this:

“Isn’t this really showing the muscle of the evangelical community? Because President Trump, one of the reasons he did this, besides the reason that he knew was the smart thing to do and the right thing to do, was the fact that his base, right, particularly that part that’s evangelical Right, which is a huge part of his base, really has been demanding this for quite a while,” Bannon said.

Full story here.