A new study from Baylor University clarifies something that’s been bothering me for a while: how is it that supposedly rational people are not only able to ignore or deny recent history when it comes to the disastrous conservative policies that destroyed the economy, but insist the only way to reverse the widespread failures they produced is to implement them again? It’s the cliché definition of insanity, doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. Now we have a hint: for many wingnuts it’s part of their religion:
About one in five Americans combine a view of God as actively engaged in daily workings of the world with an economic conservative view that opposes government regulation and champions the free market as a matter of faith … “When Rick Perry or Michele Bachmann say ‘God blesses us, God watches us, God helps us,’ religious conservatives get the shorthand. They see ‘government’ as a profane object — a word that is used to signal working against God’s plan for the United States. To argue against this is to argue with their religion.”
One has to admire the flexibility of the extreme right-wing godbots. For staunch absolutists their vision of morality and ethical behavior is as malleable as warm cheese. Not long ago merely criticizing the government for any reason was tantamount to insulting the troops. Harsh criticism directed at senior cabinet officials was considered an act of treason against the Commander-in-Chief in a time of war. In just two years this same group has been retrained to hate the government and believe God himself is an enemy of big government, taxes on the rich, and any kind of regulation — at the federal level only of course.