Let's hope Annette Bosworth did not waste any time on her West River campaign trip talking with Brad Ford. He'd only fill her head with more distracting nonsense.
Gordon Howie's worst blogger contends this morning that the battle between religion and secularism defines modern politics. That's what the corporate shills want you to believe. The real battle is between individuals and corporations, between genuine economic liberty and the economic serfdom that our Big Money overlords are imposing on us. Right, Rick?
As he muddles about thesislessly, Ford says "What’s happening to Morsi and his followers in Egypt is happening to Christians elsewhere." No, it's not. But is Ford suggesting that his coreligionists ought to support the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt?
And then Ford drops this whopper:
Liberal American media will support the secular Arabs, but haven’t most countries governed wisely and well under a partnership with a dominant religion? [Brad Ford, "Secularists Vs Religion Defines Modern Political Warfare," The Right Side, 2013.07.08]
Oh, for Pete's sake! Let me tie half of my brain behind my back... there. Brad! Duh!
- King George III partnered with the dominant Church of England. We saw fit to revolt. I guess Jefferson, Paine, and we are the bad guys.
- Godwin alert: Hitler steeped himself in religious symbology. The Catholic Church went along for the ride. That went badly for all concerned.
- Vladimir Putin has mingled church and state with his eager partnership with the Russian Orthodox Church. Does Russia model the wise governance Ford craves?
Secularism versus religion is not the key political conflict. It is the sideshow simpletons like Ford peddle to distract voters from the real threats to everyone's liberty, believers and non-believers alike, posed by the corporate fascism of the military-police-industrial surveillance state.
I'm not going to say anything, I'm not going to say anything.
It was totally incomprehensible as usual. Lack of thesis will do that.
Ford is not the first person in history whose inability to discern facts is substituted by attributing his actions and conclusions to a higher power.
Is there some way we can keep people like this from voting? (Only joking folks).
"haven’t most countries governed wisely and well under a partnership with a dominant religion?" (Brad Ford)
"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;" (First Amendment to the US Constitution)
I for one do not want my religion to have a partnership with the US Government. I prefer we stay independent with mutual respect for each other. And, I certainly oppose the US Government forming a partnership with another religion.
and yet, troy, yours does.
Nothing quite as good as Islamic government mixing mosque and state. Ford probably longs for public lashings of non-believers with electric cables.
And South America's intimate connection with the Catholic Church has produced economic and social Eden. Just such a good mix that people there want to leave because they just can't stand all that nausea-inducing sweetness and goodness.
"The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) called on Congress Monday to quickly pass legislation protecting voting rights in the wake of the Supreme Court's recent decision that gutted a centerpiece of the 1965 Voting Rights Act."
Troy's right: all churches are better off standing outside of the state... and all states are better off leaving their churches alone.
Hey, check out Displaced Plainsman's take on Ford's Christian jihadism!
Wayne, there's no way to keep people like Ford from voting; our only hope is to educate and motivate enough people to outweigh his vote.
The Talibanization of Christianity is not confined to the GOP, the United States or to current times. Jump in the Wayback Machine and witness the Spanish Inquisition:
Or perhaps readers would prefer the documentary on the S.I., provided by American historian Melvin James Kaminsky.
I don't think Brad Ford is as far off as many here think from what is a paradigm of historical thought. It's easy to turn up a nose and sniff at his rant. After all, he's wrong that this is a modern issue, and it's really not a struggle of secularists against religion. But he has inartfully, and perhaps ignorantly, tangentially addressed a long thread in history.
In some sense this is just the struggle of all history, but in particular in the Western World, it is a struggle of the Enlightenment, modern science and technology, an enlightened capitalist system and democratic impulses against those who don't understand and/or can't accept some or all aspects of it. Most religious people and most secularists are fully accepting of modern science and modern ways of thinking. Others struggle to make sense of it. Ford seems to fit in with the people who have a problem with a big part of the Enlightenment and the democratic impulse, which includes more than electing people to office.
In some ways, we all struggle with some aspects of modernity. I'm not a big fan of massive technological assaults on the environment, for example. As a secularist, I have immense respect for many aspects of many religions, but especially the religious tenets regarding protecting nature and creating peace and equality among all people. Ford's problem is that he wants to have a war against anyone whose beliefs don't comport with his. That's the part of religious thought that needs to be expunged.
But get me over the Ford hump, and I dig what you're saying. As you explain, the fundamental political conflict of our time may be an offshoot of the old traditionalist-modernity conflict, but it's more complicated than the simple Jesus-Satan conflict. The religious-traditionalist side seems co-mingled with if not co-opted by the corporate interests who need to distract us from fighting oil dependence and climate change. The big money interests are as secular and materialist in their values as any of my atheist friends. And a lot of secularists don't seem like part of a massive political machine actively trying to marginalize churches; they're just scientists and technocrats figuring out how stuff really works and not losing any sleep over where people spend their Sunday mornings. It seems a lot of folks Ford would likely classify as secularists probably consider themselves religious but don't reach the strict level of purity that Gordon Howie's followers imagine themselves to meet and expect everyone else to meet to join their Chosen few in Heaven.
If Ford, really wants to challenge the Enlightenment, there are scholars who do so with a sense of nuance and an appeal to the classic thought.
As Donald says, Ford does so inartfully, ignorantly, and tangentially.
His post sets up a believer vs non-believer dichotomy that requires little no nuance.
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