Observations and inanities by a second-shift assistant supervisor in the Puppy-Grinding division of the Evil Atheist Conspiracy® (our motto: "Sure it's cruel, but think of the jobs!"), your host, Brent Rasmussen.
Some folks are just plain crazy. Case in point: David Caldarola, author of an op-ed piece in the Chicago Daily Herald claims that the election is a religious war, between "the faithful" and the dreaded, nasty, soulless, baby-eating atheists.
And here all along I thought that this Presidential election was between John McCain and Barack Obama. Silly me!
[link] Liberalism is socialism-Communism-Marxism; all of which require atheism.
This is not an election between Obama and McCain. It's between atheists and the faithful.
So, according to David "Batshit Insane" Caldarola, this is how it works: Liberalism = socialism = communism = marxism = atheism. Obama is a liberal, therefore, ipso facto, Q.E.D., Barack Obama is an atheist bent on world domination, who wants to distribute your wealth to puppy grinding facilities all over North America.
It's all so very simple - when you're crazy.
Holey frakkin' Christ crackers. I'm no Einstein, but I will be so glad to have this election over with, and finally have a President whose IQ is higher than mine. That would be a nice change.
Hello, I'm reeling with a lot of new ideas gathered from you people, and this is a rewrite of my first blog entry which basically sucked.
Here's one of the main reasons I came here.
My brain was altered by the Methodists' "dogmagicians" starting when I was almost 6 years old.
Before then, my agnostic dad kept religion out of my life and off my back, but my mother couldn't live with herself, let alone anyone else, so she split and I got moved into her parents' home and church.
Something has to give, when the people you love and trust tell you with a straight face that a guy was killed and then a few days later, he woke up and walked out of the tomb and flew up to heaven where he's been hanging out ever since, waiting for the big day.
So what exactly is it that gives?
Kids in the cult I was forced into get the dogma drill around 5 or 6, by which time they've begun to feel good about their ability to figure things out for themselves.
I've heard and seen much mockery focused on the Tom Cruise Scientology video over the past couple of days. (I apologize if that link no longer works, but the video has been on and off the net and that's the best link I can find at the time of this article.) The truth is, while I believe that atheists (especially agnostic atheists), in general, have a leg to stand on in this case, I don't think the rest of the godders, or innumerable other groups, do. Let's look at a few things that Cruise says.
Tom Cruise: ...I think it’s a privilege to call yourself a Scientologist, and it’s something that you have to earn because a Scientologist does... has the ability to create new and better realities and improve conditions. Being a Scientologist, you look at someone and know absolutely that you can help them.
"But that’s what drives me... I know that we have an opportunity to really help... effectively change people’s lives and I am dedicated to that. I am absolutely, uncompromisingly dedicated to that.
Replace the words “Scientologist” with the words Muslim, Christian, Hindu, Jewish, Nazi, Feminist, Vegan, vegetarian, socialist, communist, capitalist, geek, Sikh, or even self help guru and you'll see what I mean. This statement, minus the maniacal laughter, could have come from any of the groups I listed and a whole lot more. Let's move on to the next set; shall we?
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Betty Dowdell is a Christian apologist who lives out here in my neck of the woods. She's the author of "How to be a Christian Without Being Annoying", and is touted as a home-spun apologist who speaks in plain words for the average Christian. She claims that most Christians don't even know what the word "apologist" means, so, basically, she dumbs it down for them into easily-digested chunks.
This doesn't make her any less annoying, regardless of what her book is titled. She repeats so many of the same, old, tired arguments that it make me tired to think about even starting to address them all. Again. However, one article she wrote stood so far out there with the astonishing assertion below that I couldn't let it go - I had to address it. It's just, well, a bald-faced lie. I mean, most of the time apologists leave themselves some sort of "out" so that they can later claim that they didn't really mean what they said, and that us nasty church-state separation supporters are obviously quoting them out of context, or some such.
Please, I strongly encourage you to read her whole article. You'll agree that her statement below definitely means what it says, even in context with the rest of the article. Here, just check it out for yourself:
[Betty Dowdell] ...the Constitution specifically provides for a Christian chaplain for each branch of Congress.
Well then Betty, I guess you won't have any trouble pointing out the specific part of the Constitution that actually says this.
More below the fold...
OK, you may have already heard about this. But if not, it is my pleasure to introduce yet another right-wing nut who is all for chucking out the Constitution, imposing martial law, and declaring George W. Bush to be President for Life because, see, it's all in the interests of Western Civilization.
And no, I'm not kidding. Here's a taste:
As there appears to be no sensible result of the invasion of Iraq that will be popular with his countrymen other than retreat, President Bush is reviled; he has become another victim of Democracy.
If anyone is interested, I regularly post on another blog called anklebiingpundits.com. These folks are a bunch of righ-wing christianists who are absolutely insane and a lot of fun to mess with. I go by the name Rich_White just to fuck with their heads. Todays topic was: Rebranding the GOP.
If you don't want to read the whole thing, my comments are #2, #14, #55 and #63.
For those of you who did not understand why I reported on Jerry Falwell's death like I did, here's why:
[link] That’s the thing about atheists: They greet death with great relish and glee. Along with their loss of an overall sense of sanctity goes their respect for the sanctity of the occasion. I imagine they have the neighborhood gossips giving the dirt over their own mothers’ ashes. Or upon the death of a spouse, perhaps they quickly dispense of the body and resume the pursuit of their next pleasure, which is the only solace they have in their little kingdoms of one.
Nice, huh? I saw this coming the second I heard that Falwell was dead. The right-wing dominionist media machine swings into action to stereotype and attempt to politically damage the uppity atheists.
What they don't understand is that we are not a monolithic political group. So all this does is make the individual atheist's life a little harder, a little more dangerous.
Great job, Mary Grabar. How does it feel to encourage some ignorant fuckwit Christian to beat up an atheist - just for being an atheist?
Mob rule, anyone?
Thanks to VJack over at Atheist Revolution, and Christopher Hitchens, we learn that Karl Rove is an atheist.
[link] Has anyone in the Bush administration confided in you about being an atheist?
Well, I don’t talk that much to them—maybe people think I do. I know something which is known to few but is not a secret. Karl Rove is not a believer, and he doesn’t shout it from the rooftops, but when asked, he answers quite honestly. I think the way he puts it is, “I’m not fortunate enough to be a person of faith.”
What must Bush make of that?
I think it’s false to say that the president acts as if he believes he has God’s instructions. Compared to Jimmy Carter, he’s nowhere. He’s a Methodist, having joined his wife’s church in the end. He also claims that Jesus got him off the demon drink. He doesn’t believe it. His wife said, “If you don’t stop, I’m leaving and I’m taking the kids.” You can say that you got help from Jesus if you want, but that’s just a polite way of putting it in Texas.
This just goes to my point about what exactly atheism is. As I've said before, the word "atheist" describes a person in which god-belief is absent.
I think what is happening in the "atheist blogosphere" is that we are loosely tying together a collection of nominally "atheist blogs" (which really makes no sense at all), and giving the rest of the world the false impression that we are all a monolithic political/religious group with a single set of core values and a defined group identity.
We don't. Karl Rove fucking proves it.
We need to STOP identifying ourselves as "atheist bloggers". That's a stupid way to identify a blog. I am an atheist who happens to blog. My reasons are my reasons. I do not agree with all of the other atheists out there who also happen to blog - and it frustrates the heck out of me when I am called to task for something some other wackjob said - just because they also identified themselves as an "atheist blogger".
I'm just sick to death of it.
This doesn't mean that I am not an atheist - I am. What it means is that I am going to stop trying to fit myself into what the rest of the world considers an atheist to be.
What do you folks think? Are we pigeonholing ourselves? Not all atheists are liberal democrat scientist college professors - but the public perception is that we are. Not that there is anything wrong with being a liberal democrat scientist college professor mind you, but we aren't all like that. In fact, that's a minority within our minority.
So why does this incorrect perception exist? Are we helping it along? What should we do to stop it? Should we stop it?
Do we really want "atheism" to become a de-facto religion? Because that's the way it is headed right now - regardless of what atheism actually is.
Hmnn. A "call to prayer." That sounds so familiar...
Oh, yeah. That's what they do in theocracies.
It sickens me every time one of our governmental representatives like Congressman Forbes wipes his ass on the Constitution like this. Unfortunately, it is all too common these days.
[link] WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman J. Randy Forbes (VA-04) was joined today by over 38 other Members of Congress from 21 states for a bi-partisan press conference on the steps of the U.S. Capitol. Members officially gathered to recognize the significant role that prayer has played in the history of our nation and to encourage individuals to pray for America and its leaders for five minutes each week.
“Our newspapers, televisions, and computers are overwhelmed with negative voices. We have become cynical and have lost credibility in many of our institutions. Our nation faces enormous challenges that seem to grow daily,” said Forbes. “We come today with condemnation for no one, but rather with a new dawning of hope: hope that we can lift America up, not beat her down; hope that people across this nation will join our call and pray; hope that God will hear our prayers and heal our land.”
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Matt Sanchez. So, he's a 36-year-old Marine Corporal in the reserves, a Columbia University student, and a Republican. He has been interviewed on Hannity & Colmes because of his allegations of abuse by "anti-military" lefty radicals at Columbia, posed for a picture with Ann Coulter...
...and he's a gay porn star who uses the name Rod Majors (among others) as his stage name.
Of course, the right wing media machine is going to implode spectacularly. That'll be fun to watch.
(Tip of the ballcap to Hank Fox. Thanks Hank!)
So, one of the GOP bloggers at Pajamamama-media has seen the light. Or been enlightened, more accurately. John Cole of Balloon Juice has come to understand that he no longer fits in with the right-wing shills who now mis-manage the Republican Party.
The money quote:
In short, it really sucks looking around at the wreckage that is my party and realizing that the only decent thing to do is to pull the plug on them (or help). I am not really having any fun attacking my old friends- but I don’t know how else to respond when people call decent men like Jim Webb a pervert for no other reason than to win an election. I don’t know how to deal with people who think savaging a man with Parkinson’s for electoral gain is appropriate election-year discourse. I don’t know how to react to people who think that calling anyone who disagrees with them on Iraq a “terrorist-enabler” than to swing back. I don’t know how to react to people who think that media reports of party hacks in the administration overruling scientists on issues like global warming, endangered species, intelligent design, prescription drugs, etc., are signs of… liberal media bias.
The Mark Foley scandal is disgusting and sensational, but it's a smokescreen folks. The republicans have known about Foley's penchant for young boys for years.
This was a scandal kept under wraps until it was needed to deflect public attention away from our President being granted dictatorial powers by Congress.
The de-facto loss of our ability to litigate against our government for First Amendment rights violations, and the suspension of habeus corpus are the things we should be concerned about.
I feel for the kid in this, and what Foley did was massively inappropriate and probably criminal, but it pales in comparison to what is being done to our Constitution and our civil liberties. Let the justice system do it's job and put Foley in prison. Don't let this made-for-the-Jerry-Springer-Show, tabloid-like "scandal" deflect you into a less-important tangent.
Think of it as first-aid or triage. We need to stop the life-threatening bleeding before we comb the lice out of the patient's hair.
Folks, this administration is killing America. That is where our focus should be. If it's not, if we let the theocrats sway the public's flitting, bird-like attention away from the important stuff with crap like this, then we are all in grave danger.
The Republican Representative from Florida, Katherine Harris, has gone completely off the deep end and has entered into "dangerous lunatic" territory. She is the type of politician that will do her damnedest to push this country into a repressive, dominionist Christian theocracy.
[Katherine Harris] "If you're not electing Christians, then in essence you are going to legislate sin," Harris told interviewers from the Florida Baptist Witness, the weekly journal of the Florida Baptist State Convention. She cited abortion and same-sex marriage as examples of that sin.
Harris, a candidate in the Sept. 5 Republican primary for U.S. Senate, said her religious beliefs "animate" everything she does, including her votes in Congress.
Nice. It's the Dominionist viewpoint in a nutshell, from a nut, no less. But this particular nut is up for elected office and has a chance of being elected to the U.S. Senate by her fellow Floridians.
Do you want this wild-eyed fruitcake to have a say in designing legislation for the United States as a whole? Frankly, it scares the crap out of me.
Harris told the journalists "we have to have the faithful in government" because that is God's will. Separating religion and politics is "so wrong because God is the one who chooses our rulers," she said.
Hmnn. Odd. I was always under the impression that the voters chose our elected representatives. What fucking alternate pseudo-America is this wackjob living in where the divine hand of a magical god chooses "rulers" for us?
Holy shit, people. I mean, wow. Just... wow.
"And if we are the ones not actively involved in electing those godly men and women," then "we're going to have a nation of secular laws. That's not what our Founding Fathers intended, and that certainly isn't what God intended."
Gasp! A nation of secular laws!? Why, that would be, would be... Constitutional, you freak!
It floors me that we elect clearly insane people like Rep. Harris. What the heck is going on out there, Florida? Is this your best and brightest? An insane Governor and an insane Representative who's running for the Senate now?
After the negative opinion started pouring in, Harris' public relations monkeys worked overtime on a blurb for distribution:
"Congresswoman Harris encourages Americans from all walks of life and faith to participate in our government," it stated. "She continues to be an unwavering advocate of religious rights and freedoms."
Uh, huh. Sure she does.
You can stop this. It's up to you to go to the polls and vote this insane theocratic kingmaker out of office. This is not just Florida anymore - you're fucking with the rest of the country now. Your country needs your help at this most critical time.
Don't let us down. Re-elect Democratic Senator Bill Nelson.
President G.W. Bush on September 1, 2005:
"I don't think anyone anticipated the breech of the levees,"
Mark Fischetti, writer for Scientific American, in an October 1, 2001 article:
[link] The boxes are stacked eight feet high and line the walls of the large, windowless room. Inside them are new body bags, 10,000 in all. If a big, slow-moving hurricane crossed the Gulf of Mexico on the right track, it would drive a sea surge that would drown New Orleans under 20 feet of water. "As the water recedes," says Walter Maestri, a local emergency management director, "we expect to find a lot of dead bodies."
Offered without comment. Perhaps you have one? Or two?
The Reverend Mykeru nails Bush to the wall.
[link] The short version is this: New Orleans, being mostly below sea level and offered limited protection from flood waters coming from Lake Pontchartrain to the North, was known to be vulnerable to an especially powerful storm. Like an asteroid hitting the Earth it wasn't a question of if a disaster like that was going to happen, but when it was going to happen. The Bush administration took money intended to prepare for, and intended to prevent, such an eventuality and redirected it to "other priorities".
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