…Or Maybe It Is the End Times

Pat Robertson says, “I go away at the end of each year to pray, and if I heard the Lord right about 2006, the coasts of America will be lashed by storms.” If he heard the Lord right? Meaning that prophets might mishear the Lord? If a tsunami doesn’t hit the Pacific Northwest this year, does that mean that maybe Moses got the Ten Commandments wrong?

General Hayden says to the Congressional committee that will confirm his selection as the head of the CIA that “if I had no lawful authority to do something that needed to be done to protect this country, of course I would do it.” That can be effectively translated as him claiming that his opinion (as to whether or not the country is being threatened) takes precedence over the laws of the country that he would ostensibly be protecting. In any other job interview situation, this would be the answer that would ensure that he would no longer be under consideration for the position. That he attempts to justify this declaration of criminal intent by informing Congress–the Congress with the sole power to declare war, and which has thus far declined to do so with respect to the Bush Administration’s military missteps in the Middle East–that we’re at war should really just reinforce that. Does he understand that he’s not auditioning for a part on 24?

3 Replies to “…Or Maybe It Is the End Times”

  1. You liberal elite, you :-):-)

    The optimist in me (the part of my psyche that gets me out of bed in the morning) says we are seeing an inexorable waning of the popularity of the Religious Right. I didn’t say the **influence** of the Religious Right is necessarily waning; I said its “popularity,” its appeal to common people–that’s exactly what I meant. Sentiments like those expressed by Pat Robertson are striking an increasing proportion of the American public as ridiculous. I believe that’s the trend of the future, and it’s just going to accelerate.

    Look at the very public humiliations of the Bush administration, from the failed war in Iraq, to the outrageous debt and deficits, to the “Social Security reform” that went absolutely nowhere, because nobody trusted it. And this the work of a leader who was elected, at least in part, because “God speaks through him” !! What does that say for Right-wing mortal mouthpieces of the Divine? To me, it says the cynical fusion of fundamentalist religion and the interests of big money isn’t charming the American electorate quite as swimingly as maybe it did at the start of the “Reagan revolution” all those years ago.

    The New Right political machine is currently moving in some scary directions–I think particularly of the militarism and the erosion of women’s rights. But politicians who talk about “going away at the end of each year to pray” are eventually going to sound as dated as bell-bottom jeans.

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  2. I won’t argue with elite (though I’m far less of an elite than those figures in the Bush Administration who would label me so), but I contest liberal, at least based on any definition of the word more contemporary than would have fit J. S. Mill. I suppose I would agree to be known by Samuel Johnson’s definition of the term (“Not mean; not low in birth; not low in mind. Becoming a gentleman. Munificent; generous; bountiful; not parcimonious.”), but I will not consent to the definition that the Right brandishes and the Left flees without correcting.

    I agree that the popularity of the religious Right is, as all popularity eventually does, waning, but whoever is behind the current Administration (religious, corporate, or dynastic) seems to be putting significant effort into ensuring their ongoing influence long after their popularity has subsided. And history is full of examples of unpopular minorities ruling over nations for decades and even centuries. Our best hope is their clearly demonstrated incompetence.

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