Thursday, October 17, 2013

the far-right "christian" movement which attempted a debt default

HuffPo | If the U.S. breaches its debt ceiling this week, bringing with it the global financial panic economists predict, leaders of a little-known far-right movement called Christian Reconstructionism can claim partial responsibility. Their goal: to eradicate the U.S. government so that a theocratic Christian nation emerges to enforce biblical laws.

That's right -- laws out of the Book of Leviticus prohibiting adultery, homosexuality, and abortion, with penalties including death by stoning.

The key leader of this movement is Gary North, founder of the Institute for Christian Economics in Tyler, Texas. He's a long-time associate of Ron Paul, intellectual godfather of the Tea Party movement -- the very people responsible for Congressional deadlock over the government shutdown and debt ceiling debate.

Paul and North go way back. North served on Paul's first congressional staff in 1976, and North describes himself as Paul's "original staff economist." Earlier this year, Paul announced plans for a curriculum for home schoolers that will teach "biblical" concepts. The director of curriculum development for the program? Gary North.

In an Oct. 4 column in The Tea Party Economist, North describes government default as a "fake threat." So it can't be a surprise that the Tea Party caucus isn't taking government default seriously.

And what of the connection between this group and Republican Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, who almost singlehandedly created the government shutdown and debt ceiling crisis?

Cruz is the son of Rafael Cruz, a Texas pastor who directs Purifying Fire Ministries. According to a biography page for the True the Vote summit in April 2013, Rafael Cruz became active in politics during the 1980 presidential campaign, joining the Religious Roundtable, founded in 1979 to involve conservative Christians in politics. "The Religious Roundtable was a Judeo-Christian organization that mobilized millions of Christians all across the United States and helped elect Ronald Reagan," Cruz said. "It was a precursor of the Tea Party, even before the Moral Majority."

What to make of all of this? For the last few weeks Tea Party-leaning members of Congress have been described as "kooks" and "crazies" by the Washington establishment, liberals, moderate Republican leaders, and the media.

The name-calling might be satisfying to those who oppose the Tea Party, but it's entirely untrue. These are people who are patient, determined, deliberate, and rational.


woodensplinter said...
To the untrained eye, Reidy’s outburst had all the
markings of a mental breakdown, but a minister wrote the Fox News
morning program arguing that the woman was simply sharing a communique
from on high.

“It was not a mental episode,” host Steve Doocy
read from the email. “What she was doing was known as an exercise of the
gifts of the spirit where she was. She had brought a warning and a
message from God.”

It wasn’t just the Lord’s outrage over
Obamacare that got “Fox & Friends” viewers riled up, they were upset
that guards seized Reidy for sharing her beliefs.

this religious and obviously a sweet lady gets fed up and speaks her
mind, something we all have tried to do,” Doocy read from a second
email. “She brings up our dear Lord and she gets a mental evaluation? I
think it should be the other way around. And then this person goes on to
list the people who should be checked out.”

Doocy’s co-host
Elisabeth Hasselbeck expressed some sympathy for this interpretation,
saying, “We’ve had incidents in the past, which certainly required some
security measures to be taken and we’re thankful for those. But who
knows? Maybe she just saw something that didn’t seem right and mounting
frustrations and tensions brought it out of her.”

But Brian Kilmeade, the other member of the coffee chat club, wasn’t having it.

“She got behind the speaker’s chair and started screaming in the middle of a vote. You do have to pull her away,” he said.

Vic78 said...

I'm glad they figured out the dominionists were a problem. It only took 40 years. Soon they'll figure out the mainstream media advocates extreme fuckery.

woodensplinter said...

Ms. Reidy was talking out of school.

CNu said...

lol, i think she was letting the cat out of the bag.

Ed Dunn said...

I'm thinking ELF....

ken said...

"The name-calling might be satisfying to those who oppose the Tea Party, but it's entirely untrue. These are people who are patient, determined, deliberate, and rational."

Both of his theories can't be correct. If the entity he is talking about is patient, determined, deliberate and rational, they would not have used this moment and a government shutdown to bring about what the author claims they desire. The patient and deliberate would use their efforts to insulate themselves from the consequences of a government that is going to go bankrupt. And when that disaster happens that's when they would take control. No rational person with ideas of a coup would believe that time is now.

And if the author was right, they would have let their opponents end the sequestration also.

Harry Reid's last words "we know" in this video seem for more conspiratory than the ideas above.

Nakajima Kikka said...

I think there's little doubt that the Armenian genocide was a crucial underlying factor in the development of Mr. Rushdoony's religious thought.

BigDonOne said...

Bernard Kliban was a San Francisco cartoonist, died in 1990, did lot of work for Playboy mag.
Had some good takes on religion. This one kind of complements yesterday's zillion prostrate Fuzzlimz...

Vic78 said...

Ever heard of Jonestown? Then there were the Branch Davidians. Between 30-60 million Americans believe Jesus is going to snatch them up one day. Laugh if you want to. People that are sincere enough to pick a time a day to perform a task are determined and focused. If they decide they want to do something, hope they choose to do something good.

BigDonOne said...

Well, this one of his may apply....

Nakajima Kikka said...

Rushdoony's life and his religious philosophy together would make a fascinating study on the effects of extreme psychological trauma (the Armenian genocide) on personality development. I wonder if any tissue samples taken from him at different timepoints still exist? It would be interesting to know what his epigenetic patterns were at those timepoints, and if any significant changes occurred in them over time.

CNu said...

What is your thinking and/or evidence for this nk-san? It seems odd that they would transition from the Ararat proximate christianity of Armenia to the harshest possible old-line calvinism, which calvinism is the source of dominionism.

CNu said...

I this may be a rather extreme stretch. Rushdoony was born and raised in America. The fact that his father founded an old-line Calvinist church is of interest, but even more interesting to me is the influence of Nelson Bunker Hunt and the John Birch Society in both shaping and financing the propagation of these reconstructionist memes.

The Kochs cornered the global market in asphalt during the 1970s's in parallel with the Hunt brothers run on the global silver market during that same period of time. The oil magnate brothers were Birch society stalwarts. It is the fusion of Birch Society libertarian politics, a Randian thinking man's politics which has tried to proliferate via education as its propagation mechanism - which also set upon an alternative vector (evangelical dominionism) because stupid people are easier to herd, train, and launch.

CNu said...

The reason the Koch brothers launched their Snowden weapon this year, and the reason the reconstructionist wing of the Koch financed tea party went all out to shut down government - was because the old anglo establishment has dismantled much of the neoconservative apparatus assembled in the executive branch and the military, and, put the neoconservative agenda in deep freeze. Jeh Johnson is even now being redeployed to oversee pest control in the DHS after serving effectively in the DoD.

Outside of the executive branch housecleaning, there is the now well-known fact of PRISM - which executive capability constitutes the single greatest risk ever to the shady, anonymous donor network carefully constructed by the Birch/Libertarian/Reconstructionist thought leadership over the past 35 years. Methinkst the power elite has fully risen from its long slumbers and well along the process of dismantling and putting the legitimate brakes on any further far-right wing fustercluckery.

Dale Asberry said...

So how do you see the Kochs getting censured over this drive to crazee? Especially since so many Tea Partiers are so driven to take the Republican party to Krazee Land?

CNu said...

First and foremost, the Republican party is of no consequence to these cats. They know full well that the reality of electoral politics in America is 2parties/1ideology. Ideologically, they're a genuine and highly differentiated 3rd party. Time and time again, they've witnessed and experienced the powerful resistance built into the status quo as against the successful launch of a viable 3rd party. So, parasitization of the republican party was the only game available to them.

Second, there are no consequences for them directly. See how their boy got caught laundering donor money in California? That's the full extent of what's doable to cats at this level of the game. These guys literally have the money and the means to foment full-on hot civil war, right? That fact notwithstanding, they've kept their game shiningly upright and entirely legal.

Granted they've distorted the law such that money is equated with speech, corporations are confused with persons, and the normative operations of elective government bent to their will through systematic gerrymandering (but legally) so that they can stack the deck in certain localities with their nutty and phuk representatives.

All of that is perfectly legal. In consequence of that fact, I don't see them as getting censured ever at all - any more than their dad got censured when William F. Buckley called out the Birch Society as a fringe element and a hazard to mainstream conservatism.

Not content to see their long, patient, and finally fruitful strategems fall into the dustbin of history, they DID go all out this year to try and wreak legal havoc and truth be known, they have succeeded at that beyond their wildest imaginings, just not in the useful and coherent ways they probably set out to accomplish.

CNu said...

I think the Brookings cabal has handed the right-wing of American elites an astonishing ass-whooping that will NEVER make it into the pages of any mainstream history book. I think they have substantially postponed if not outright averted WW-III, and, I believe they have acted so as to ensure an orderly powerdown and equilibration of American primacy with other productive centers of power across the world.

Vic78 said...

The Republican Party has been in crazy land since Nixon. The Tea Party is that same old republican base from back then. Listen to Reagan and Nixon talk. Those are old school tea billies. It's just that there were checks in place to keep them from acting a complete fool.

They were setting up shop in the 80s. The parties would normally recruit candidates from higher social classes. The republicans encouraged their Jesus Camp people to run for office. And when they got there they were told what to say and how to vote. Gingrich was able to keep the crazies under his thumb because they were dependent on him.

They had the same ideas this time around but the dependency moved from elected leadership to the money guys. The money guys don't know shit about governing or policy. And they let the Black guy fuck with them.

CNu said...

Nah Vic, this is an egregious oversimplification if for no other reason than that Nixon and Reagan were carefully groomed and vetted representatives of the western U.S. power elite. Military industrial power all the way there.

John McCain was/is a representative of that same faction. Crooked, yes. Militarist, double-yes. Crazee, only to the extent that you define the warsocialist, parasitic military state crazy, and said state has dominated American politics since WW-II.

Where you could see things taking an entirely new trajectory, and jumping off the old balance of power elite rails - was in 2008 when McCain was compelled to add the snow-ho to his ticket. Where'na phuk did that nitwit come from? She was an unvetted random variable literally from out of nowhere - at least nowhere that the mainstream political narrative had taken into consensus consideration.

The Tea Party is NOT the old dixiecrats, because the old dixiecrats have died out. The Tea Party is the astroturfed grass roots which may be in part comprised of dixiecrat descendents with nowhere else to park their political wagon. The power behind the Tea Party is primarily Christian Reconstructionists, mostly based out of Texas and with a common backending to oil money and oil power, period.

Historically we can say that the oil power and the military power have cohabited since after WW-II (1947 specifically) - they got closer when Nixon took the U.S. off the gold standard and invented the petrodollar, and that the discretionary wars fought since the first gulf war have been petrodollar primacy assurance wars.

That said, the Tea Party is a creation NOT of the establishment petrodollar governance elites, rather, it is the child of upstart oil billionaires who want a full seat at the elite establishment table in the U.S. and who have gone to "heroic" lengths to legally acquire that seat.

Nakajima Kikka said...

I had heard a little about Rushdoony before, but didn't pay much attention, as he seemed to be just one more Protestant religious extremist pirouetting within Bircher circles. Then you brought him up here, so I did some surfing and came up with this:

and from the man himself:

Plenty of information about his life. Growing up, he was embedded within the Ottoman Armenian refugee community in California. At home, he was surrounded by two things, the Bible and reminders of the Armenian genocide. Continuous exposure to the stories of the genocide fundamentally shaped his extreme dualist view of the world. He said so himself:

In Armenia, there was no neutral ground between Islam and Christianity,
and I came to realize that there is no neutral ground anywhere

I suspect the reason he left Armenian Christianity was because its theological perspective wasn't sufficiently dualist for him. Psychologically, he needed something much harsher to enable him to deal with all the emotional turmoil produced by his upbringing. Immersing himself in an extremist Protestant sect might have been the only way he could maintain just enough sanity to at least be functional.

Nakajima Kikka said...

Rushdoony was born in America, but he was conceived in Ottoman Armenia in 1915, right in the middle of the genocide period. His mother was under enormous stress carrying him inside her on her flight to Russia. That had to have had some effect on his early neurological development and the setting of his initial epigenetic pattern.

In California, he grew up immersed in the Ottoman Armenian refugee community, continuously hearing the stories of the Bible interwoven with the stories of the genocide. A continuous high-stress environment, IOW, compounded with all the usual culture shock associated with being part of an immigrant family. Epigenetic effects of some kind should not be surprising.

Next there is the matter of how he treated his first wife:

More trauma, more opportunity for both neurological and epigenetic effects, some of which undoubtedly were inherited by his children. Rushdoony's life was one of unending trauma, and it took its toll. He was a sad, pathetic man, and his religious philosophy is a perfect expression of that.

But he wasn't born that way. He was made that way. Through years of systematic abuse.

And the Koch Brothers, and the Hunts, are experts at sniffing out people such as Rushdoony, offering them shelter of a kind, and then using them for their own purposes.

Vic78 said...

I was saying the tea party's nothing new. Those people have been cultivated for a long time. They're the people that wasted their time listening to Rush Limbaugh and believing whatever he said. When the money guys started the Tea Party, the foot soldiers were ready to go. Yes, it was a recent development to have any asshole run for office. It started in the 80s with dominionist congregations. The people in the pews were encouraged to run for office. They were only supposed to get so far. People like Palin and Bachman were never supposed to be in position to run for president.

CNu said...

Limbaugh's only became a national talker in the late 80's and when he started, he wasn't exactly peddling the same cup of tea he's been peddling since the late 90's. Like Glenn Beck, he had to figure out his base and then start feeding them what they need. Also, his base does not coincide with the hardcore social conservative base underneath these dominionists. The dominionist movement was a thread specifically spawned during the 1970's by the frustrated Birchers who needed to expand beyond schools and education, and had reached their limits with lightweight libertarian intellectuals and folks who'd cottoned for a long time to the conspiracy theory fringe which was Bircher stock-in-trade.

They made conscious decision to go after stupid for opportunistic electoral/political gain. Think for a moment how radically different the Cato libertarian agenda is from the nutty and phuk stuff being peddled by these Reconstructionists? They're as different as chalk is different from cheese, yet they coexist under the opportunistic electoral big-tent that these midwestern/southwestern wannabe elite billionaires have erected for political purposes.

The Koch Bros don't cotton to any of that crap, yet they've cultivated it every.single.step of the way. Besides Rushdoony, the other big medievalist they cultivated was Francis Schaeffer

Nakajima Kikka said...

What's the relationship between CR, Dominionism, and these guys:

"The Family" bears a certain similarity to the White Lotus Society ( When they failed in their endeavors to overthrow the Qing dynasty, parts of it morphed into various criminal organizations. The Triad is believed to be a direct descendent of the WLS.

CNu said...

Thank you very much for that Berkely article nk-san. It confirms everything I've related here on the blog based on first hand observation - but you know how people are - what you tell them is not to be believed until they read it in writing from some other source....,

Vic78 said...

I guess I did oversimplify what happened a little bit. I know about Schaeffer. I was 18 when I first heard his name. The people at TBN said his name in hushed tones. I started doing my homework and discovered a hustle. It's worse than what we're talking about in this post.

ken said...

"The power behind the Tea Party is primarily Christian Reconstructionists"

Wait what??? The analysis shows that most people who agree with the religious right also support the Tea Party. But support for the Tea Party is not synonymous with support for the religious right. An August 2010 poll by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press and the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life found that nearly half of Tea Party supporters (46%) had not heard of or did nbuild ot have an opinion about “the conservative Christian movement sometimes known as the religious right”; 42% said they agree with the conservative Christian movement and roughly one-in-ten (11%) said they disagree.3 More generally, the August poll found greater familiarity with and support for the Tea Party movement (86% of registered voters had heard at least a little about it at the time and 27% expressed agreement with it) than for the conservative Christian movement (64% had heard of it and 16% expressed support for it).

And then after we drill down how many of those are Christian Reconstructionist, i.e. postmillennialist believing that God will build his kingdom on earth before the return of Christ which isn't Biblical and is what Rushdoony promoted, compared with the premillenialist which is the camp where Schaeffer probably put himself into. Most Christians read the Bible and understand the world and it's governments are only going move further away from Biblical foundations, wide will be the path to destruction, the majority get this and it is prophesied this will happen, the reconstructionist is very fringe and is not Biblical.

The strength of the tea party is libertarian as you can see from this link, social issues are much less of a priority than government fiscal issues and size of government.

Vic78 said...

Schaeffer and Robertson worked together. Nobody cares where one stands on the timing of Jesus' return. Those divisions are minor when it comes to the big prize. If you want to see who's working together, turn on channel TBN.

The religious right is the republican base. They are the ones that work for electoral campaigns and buy books. A lot of tea party types will call themselves independent instead of saying they're republican. The poll has the tea party in agreement with the same policies as the religious right.

Remember when Paul Ryan did his bullshit backtracking on Ayn Rand? He said he walked away because he found out she was an atheist. Paul Ryan was a tea party favorite bending over backwards for the religious right. Why do you think politicians are seen in public with John Haggee?

CNu said...

The religious right is the republican base. They are the ones that work for electoral campaigns and buy books.

Bears repeating. I will never forget the twits I endlessly debated in highschool who proudly toted their oversized satchels of books and engaged in endless rounds of scriptural pokemon. About 7-8 years ago, I was intent on commercializing a technology to inexpensively, flexibly, and interactively program digital signage. One of our primary target customers was christian bookstores because they remained the only bookstore demographic that was still growing.

Libertarians will always and only be a fringe political factor. The fact that Bircher libertarians realized early on that they could seize upon abundant flocks of simple-minded sheep and get them to do a big chunk of their bidding is political gold. The Calvinists were not the first apocalypse-lovers that the Birchers went after. A full decade earlier they'd gone after mormons

And that remains a factor in their kit, a la Mitt Romney and Glenn Beck.

CNu said...

lol, there's nothing esoteric about The Family or its origins. The Triad is the traumatized orphan child of Shaolin and in the criminal underworld, I think you have to show and prove your personal mettle.

CR and Dominionism share a common root as the opportunistic proliferation vector for the John Birch society. I believe that the Family is fundamentally the Methodist Opus Dei. Goodwill Industries/Wilberforce Foundation seem to be the money engines, quite separate and distinct from the underlying engines of stupidity in CR and Dominion.

That said, christian denominations are permeable. Gov. Sam Brownback is a Koch beneficiary and an originally methodist convert to catholicism who is a member of the Fellowship. In a "religion" largely devoid of ritual practices and which places great stock in glibness and personal charisma (breath and britches) - it's possible for a po'boy to go very, very far if he has a great deal of game.

ken said...

" If you want to see who's working together, turn on channel TBN."

TBN brags on their own site that they have a .3 rating in time prime, animal planet is barely edging them out at .4, that is not much influence or even main stream Christian right. And yes TBN is generally postmillennialist; the prosperity message is one of postmillennialist.

The religious right is in the republican party true enough, but this doesn't mean the religious right wants to replace the constitution with Biblical law. The religious right simply doesn't have much to agree with in regards to what the democratic party stands for. And the farther left the democratic party goes, the more who will disagree with them and the more who will align with others who agree on issues that are important to each faction.

And this would mean individuals like the libertarians who make up the bulk of the tea party who like to think of themselves not to be affiliated with any party, find themselves agreeing more with republicans because of how far left the democrats have tilted. It's that simple.

ken said...

" They want to take over the world for Jesus. They've said it enough times over the decades."

I guess I would be considered from the Christian right, and this would be what "take over the world for Jesus" would like like:

Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time, for which I was appointed a preacher and an apostle—I am speaking the truth in Christ and not lying—a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and truth.

----Or maybe something like this, there is of course some reflections back to a previous and rather long discussion, a point certainly worth noting, but not the main point here:

Beloved, I now write to you this second epistle (in both of which I stir up your pure minds by way of reminder), that you may be mindful of the words which were spoken before by the holy prophets, and of the commandment of us,[a] the apostles of the Lord and Savior, knowing this first: that scoffers will come in the last days, walking according to their own lusts, and saying, “Where is the promise of His coming? For since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of creation.” For this they willfully forget: that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of water and in the water, by which the world that then existed perished, being flooded with water. But the heavens and the earth which are now preserved by the same word, are reserved for fire until the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men.

But, beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.

This is mostly what would be considered in bringing the world to Jesus as a person from the Christian right. From a Biblical perspective we understand all governments and the world will come to an end. So if we were to take over a government "for Jesus" it too would be destroyed with the rest of the imperfect governments and this world when Christ comes. As is said here:

Now I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. Also there was no more sea. Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, “Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.”

Tom said...

Matthew 7:21-23, babe.

Vic78 said...

You're acting as if the Moral Majority, Focus on the Family, CBN, and the Christian Coalition didn't shape the GOP into what it is today. You should look up Ralph Reed.

CNu said...

lol, he ain't miss a thing Vic. You talking the political chess game played out in rather plain sight, and there he goes again with his trusty dusty Pokemon deck out spouting gibberish about nothing - like grown folks hadn't already dissected the schismatic lines within American "christendom".

Why to hear Ken tell it, the categorical ass-whooping handed down by the 2Party/1Ideology methodists to these nutty as phuk reconstructionists isn't indicative of any kind of fundamental differences within American belief and the American body politic. To hear Ken tell it, Pope Francis wasn't making a very pointed statement in the direction of the nutty-as-phuk elements within the American catholic church. Nah, pay no attention to the man behind the curtain, nothing to see over there....,

ken said...

Is it your contention that before these organizations, the republican platform didn't stand for the issues it stands for now? If so, explain which issues are changed because of these organizations.

Vic78 said...

You can read what this guy had to say if you don't believe anyone here.

CNu said...

Ooooooohhh........, you sank his battleship!!!!

ken said...

Now Barry Goldwater is a good guy, because he is mad that people won't vote for him if he isn't representative of their positions? What else of Barry Goldwater's point of view do you wish we maintained. Maybe the government should not be allowed to do anything the constitution does not authorize? Would you go for that, would you be a republican then?