Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Franklin Graham says sinners in New Orleans need to repent

One sign of America’s descent into religious fanaticism was obvious on CNN when they interviewed Franklin Graham, the son of evangelist Billy Graham.

Many of the extreme fundamentalists (as if there are other kinds) are best illustrated by their rabid hatred. They don’t merely preach the “gospel” they also scapegoat, target groups that the fundamentalist nutters find inspiring to despise. Billy Graham was often disliked by these hate mongers because he refused to stoop to such gutter sermons. His son has no aversion to such bigotry. He is pandering to the most vile elements of religious fanaticism.

In his CNN interview this evangelist of fantasy and myth dragged out the most primitive form of human superstition. While saying he didn’t want to claim that God targeted New Orleans because of sin he seemed to being saying just that. He kept saying that the flood would bring a revival to New Orleans and he hoped that sinners would repent. In particularly he repeatedly targeted gay and lesbian people. This was something his father didn’t do at least not with the vigor of his silly son.

The US has gone crazy. It has descended into a cultism of the worst kind. It is a Christian jihad being pushed by the simpleton in the White House who thinks the greatest political philosopher in history was Jesus. That a man who seems so intellectually challenged could capture the White House is itself a sign that the dumbing down of America’s schools has had it’s predictable results.

With so many American’s barely literate they are falling for precisely the types of programs that stupid people accept. First, they are becoming more and more religious. The fact is that the dumber people are the more religious they tend to be. Second, they are inspired by an authoritarianism that the lower classes have always yearned for. There is nothing the dumb desire more than a “strong man” to order them about. And thirdly they believe that the “strong man” not only should order them about but support them as well. They are “compassionate conservatives.”.

For years these people were the minority and they gathered in revival tents, their “Calvary Temples”, “Assemblies of God”, “Holiness Tabernacles” and the like. They were dirt farmers, uneducated, often poor or lower class and simple. As America became educated it drifted away from such nonsense. But when the public schools failed and ignorant people graduate high school still ignorant fundamentalism enjoyed a revival. Stupidity flourished and so did religion and conservatism.

The Bush Administration is the center for this sort of thinking. It is big government gone made, inspired by the fervour of crusaders out to save the world. It wants to control everything.

Of course Rev. Graham can’t preach without wanting to get well paid for it. In this case his little sermon was on how he was demanding that the federal government provide welfare to all the churches. He wants the churches to be given 5 mobile homes each so they can determine who will get help and who won’t. So if you are one of those despised gay couples that Graham so clearly dislikes don’t expect help even if you lost everything.

Graham’s plea for redistributing wealth from taxpayers to lunatic asylums for the religiously insane is a flagrant attempt to use the disaster to bribe people into his own fundamentalist fanaticism. By giving the mobile homes to the churches, and not to the victims of Katrina, he intends to create a mechanism to use aid to the victims to control the victims. Historically all welfare programs have been measures used to control behaviour and regulate certain groups. The Left has done this for decades and now the Religious Right is trying to do it as well. One of the major flaws in Left-wing thinking has been their strategy to build massive government bureaucracies. But all they did was create the means for the Bushites to walk in and take over the existing structures the Left built up and use them for illiberal purposes. State power is always evil no matter who controls it. And even if, for some brief period, it is used for beneficial purposes it will eventually fall into the hands of the malevolent.

There was one other point made on the news that I thought illustrated the absurdity of the Bush crusade. It was President Bush hinting rather strongly that an “avian flu” crisis would be used to impose military rule over large sections of the United States. Bush has already used the Katrina disaster to get Americans used to the idea of US soldiers going door to door evicting people from their homes and confiscating legally owned firearms.

Now he is saying that if a flu epidemic hits (which is relatively simple to manufacture if one wished) then there is a military role to quarantine large sections of the United States under what would amount to a military dictatorship. I find that statement one of the most ominous made this man. Certainly Bush is the most dangerous occupant of the White House since FDR. And it seems likely to me that before this regime is finished it will surpass Roosevelt in monstrous actions and the expansion of government power. The legacy of Bush will be a rampant assault on individual freedom and constitutional government. That is precisely the sort of simplistic dictatorial ideas that appeal to religious lunatics.


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