Sunday, August 30, 2009

August, 2009: Pester Pastor Steve Anderson

Hands down, folks, this month's winner of the Fundamentalist Jackass of the Month award goes to the criminal bigot "Pastor" Steve Anderson, who hates abortion so much he wants the "socialist devil murderer" Barack Obama killed, and he has exhorted his congregation to do the deed. Christopher Broughton, who brought a unloaded and deactivated (though no less threatening) AK-15 to a Barack Obama townhall meeting on healthcare, sat in Anderson's Whackoid Faithful Word Baptist Church in Tempe, AZ. as pure, undiluted hate spewed from this so-called Christian "minister's" lips:

"I don't obey Barack Obama. And I'd like Barack Obama to melt like a snail tonight....You're going to tell me I'm supposed to pray for the socialist devil, murderer, infanticide, who wants to see young children and he wants to see babies killed through abortion and partial birth abortion and all these different things -- you're gonna tell me I'm supposed to pray for God to give him a good lunch tomorrow while he's in Phoenix, Arizona?

"Nope. I'm not gonna pray for his good. I' going to pray that he dies and goes to hell."

Gee, here I thought the Sermon on the Mount advised folks to forgive their enemies, turn the other cheek, practice tolerance and all that. Guess not. Someone's got to be wrong: Anderson or Jesus. Wonder who?

Recently, Anderson was posted to YouTube in a clip of his arrest by Arizona Highway Patrolmen. He kept demanding to be told what he had done wrong. He had the windows rolled up. He would not get out of his car, so the cops told him to cover his eyes. Then they smashed the windows and tased the sumbitch. He screamed his lungs out and they dragged him out of the vehicle and took him in. Like his ideological pal, Sarah Palin, Anderson obviously has a persecution complex.

He wants to be a martyr. I make an offer to him no strings attached. Mail me a hundred bucks for some gasoline, a couple of 4"X4" poles, three railway nails, and a little sign saying "Ecce Homo," and I'll happily drive out to Tempe and nail 'im up. Give the sorry motherfucker just exactly what he wants and needs.

Monday, August 3, 2009

July, 2009: A Tie: Dick Armey & Ralph Reed

There are so many certifiably insane fundies around, it's sometimes difficult to make a decision as to which one is the Fundamentalist Jackass of the Month. That was the case in July: it became a toss-up between two "formers" who are making news again, a former House majority leader (now corporate lobbyist) and a former head of Pat Robertson's Christian Coalition. They're Baaaaaaaaaack!

Armey, a lobbyist for Big Oil, testified for Orin Hatch and other climate change deniers at a Senate hearing late in July, setting forth what characterized as "a novel argument against global warming." He characterized belief in man-made climate change as "eco-evangelical hysteria" and asked rhetorically if America wasn't becoming "a nation of environmental hypochondriacs" -- in effect, a nation of paranoids. Then, he added:

"Now these are observations that are not popular to make because right now it's almost taken as an article of faith that this crisis is real. Let me say I take it as an article of faith if the lord God almighty made the heavens and the Earth, and he made them to his satisfaction and it is quite pretentious of we little weaklings here on earth to think that we are going to destroy God's creation...."

This man is delusional, but the fact that many Americans believe in what he's saying makes him a dangerous lunatic. Only in Texas and a few Southern states could an idiot like this win election to national office. Let's look at the "logic" of his statements. First, if "God" is (1) omnipotent, and (2) all good, why would he allow the planet to be destroyed by climate change? There is a contradiction there. Fundamentalist halfwits like Armey usually argue that "God" gave man freedom of will, so it is man who is responsible for evil. But if this is so, why didn't the "good" "God" see to it that man would always decide to do good?

Second, if man was given freedom of will, what is to prevent him from "destroy[ing] God's creation"? Armey contradicts himself. Fortunately, a few fundamentalist-evangelicals have begun to view the "dominion" passage in the Booble as warning that if "God" gave man stewardship and dominion over the earth, he wouldn't want us to destroy it. But do they realize that "God" would have prevented us from creating weapons of mass destruction, pesticides, and everything else capable of destroying the planet?

You remember Ralph Reed, don't you. Well, if not, perhaps if I drop a few names you will. How 'bout Tom DeLay, Jack Abramoff, the Tigua Indian Tribe. Still can't recall Reed? Well, look at the photo. Surely your remember that HAIR! This is the same Ralph Reed who was implicated in the DeLay-Abramoff rip-off of a tribe of Native Americans in a lobbyist scandal that put Abramoff in prison and DeLay back at his desk at the pest extermination business in Sugarland.

Seems that Reed's decided to make a "comeback." He's starting up a new Christian coalition, only he's calling it the "Truth and Freedom Coalition." This is a bizarre choice of a name for a PAC. Ostensibly, the "truth" of which he speaks is the "good news" of the Booble. But really, Reed wouldn't know the truth if it bit him on the backside, and the only freedom he cares about is the freedom to fleece the gullible and make a swift buck pandering to whacko religious nuts. Reed is a two-bit hustler with a cherubic face and a sociopathic personality.

Dick Armey and Ralph Reed: Fundamentalist Co-Jackasses of the Month.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

June, 2009: T. D. Jakes

From the Associated Press:

DALLAS— Dallas megachurch pastor T.D. Jakes says a last-minute change of plans saved him from being killed in a natural gas explosion at his home.
Jakes told thousands at a Sunday service at The Potter House that he would have been getting dressed near the blast last weeked had he not suddenly had the feeling he shold call off an early morn meeting. The blast ripped through an area of his 15,000-square-foot home did not result in any injuries.
Jakes’ voice shook day during his emotional account of how he and a church member who drove him to the church would have been in the middle of the blast. He said “caskets would have been lined up” in front of the church.
Jakes praised God for keeping him safe and said the close call has made cleanup of the wreckage at his Fort Worth house easier to deal with. He described his situation as “inconvenient, but alive.”
Lt. Kent Worley of the Fort Worth Fire Department said Sunday that his investigators found the blast to be accidental. He said the sunroom where the explosion was centered had a gas-fed pool heater and a large gas-fed barbecue grill.

OK, so I shouldn't belabor the fallacies in the Rev's thinking. Post hoc reasoning is the basis of all, or almost all, claims of miraculous eventualities. That the fire did not erupt in a place Jakes occupied at the moment of its conflagration hardly proves "God" prevented the flames from destroying him, much less that "God" exists in the first place. Jakes is a throwback to the ancient tribe whose king died on the occasion of a solar eclipse. The following summer, crops grew to exraordinary height and volume, feeding all and providing put-away vegies for the winter and enough left over for the following harvest should that fail. The next time there was an eclipse, the tribe became distraught as their king was healthy and showed no signs of illness, so they sacrificed him to the gods.

Perhaps "God" spared Jakes to allow him to take stock of his attitudes. First off there is the matter of a scriptural observation that "a rich man shall no sooner enter the Kingdom than a camel shall pass through the eye of a needle." This sharply contrasts with Jakes' "prosperity gospel." Having come from humble origins and slaving away as a ditch digger prior to his calling, Jakes might righteously claim just reward to a bit of his congregations' hard-earned shekels, but, I mean, really, a $1.7 million, 15,000-square-foot McMansion?! Psssssst, T. D., there are families living in tent cities in California. The average three-bedroom house has about 1,500 square feet. You could put ten such houses in the Jakes place. And I'd wager very, very few of those 1,500-square-foot houses has a gas-fed swimming pool, to say nothing of the barbeque pit, also gas-fed. In all likelihood, one of these contraptions caused the fire, not supernatural forces. Jakes must have forgot to shut off the pit when he took his baby back ribs off the grill.

But there is another possible missed cue. "God" may have wanted to warm Jakes' cold, cold heart vis-a-vis his long-time condemnation of gays and lesbians. "God" may have taken umbrage with Jakes' sermonizing on how homosexuals are a "brokenness" and claiming he would never hire one. Uh, T. D., aren't you going to offer a job to your own son, Jermaine. Last February, Jermaine Donnell Jakes, 29, was caught in a police sting in a public park in Dallas, where he was observed by undercover officers exposing himself, taking his penis out of his pants. The arrest came as a huge embarrassment for Jakes, and in its wake, the more outrageous fundamentalist websites (gcmwatch, jesus-is-savior, and pjmiller) claim that Jakes is becoming a "conduit for false homosexual theology" (whatever that is!).

People in crystal cathedrals shouldn't throw stones, but actually it doesn't make much difference. Jakes has shown his bigoted side. To think that only a generation or so ago Jakes would be preaching somewhere to an all-black congregation and worrying about the same sort of hate that now plagues gays.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

May, 2009: Randall Terry

Randall Terry is a piece of work. I really shouldn't be including him in this blog, not because he isn't a "fundamentalist" (he is), but because the man is mentally ill and in serious need of counseling and, perhaps, long convalescence in a home for the handicapped. A short chronology of his miserable life convinces nothing so much but that he is seriously deficient in the ability ot make intelligent choices:

1986: Terry chains himself to a sink at an abortion clinic.
1988: Terry becomes a foster parent to three troubled foster children, aged 3, 8, and 12, adopting them seven years later. Two of the children, daughters, bear children out of wedlock. One converts to Islam.
1990: Terry helps in organizing protests outside a hospital where a patient's feeding tube was removed.
1994: Terry was sued by the National Organization for Women and settles out of court.
1998: Terry runs unsuccessfully for congress in New York as a candidate for the New York State Right to Life Party.
2000: Terry divorces his wife of 19 years and marries another woman.
2003: Terry becomes the spokesman for Terry Schiavo's parents and talks Rep. Tom DeLay (R-Texas) into working the Republican Party into a frenzy of self-righteousness.
2004: Terry's adopted son, Jamiel, writes article for Out Magazine, announcing his homosexuality. Terry promptly disowns his son, claiming that the magazine article was written by someone else, that the boy "prostituted" the Terry family name, and that the youth's sexual orientation was attributable to his biological mother having been a prostitute.
2005: Terry formally converts to Roman Catholicism. He announces a run against Florida Republican state senator James E. King, citing the latter's failure to support efforts to keep Terry Schaivo alive.
2006: Terry loses to King in the Florida primary, King receiving some 66% of the vote.
2009: Terry organizes protest against Notre Dame's conferring of an honorary doctor of laws degree on Barack Obama and is arrested for violating a no-trespass order.

It is said that the central theme of Sherwood Anderson's Winesburg, Ohio is that a man, by embracing a truth and making it his own, renders it a falsehood. Such is Randall Terry.

Monday, April 27, 2009

April, 2009: Paul Crouch

From American Fascists: The Christian Right and the War on America by Chris Hedges:

"The Crouches [Paul and wife Jan] began their television evangelism with the disgraced Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker, wear gaudy costumes and sit during their popular nightly program in front of stained-glass windows that overlook faux Louis XVI sets awash in gold rococo and red velvet, glittering chandeliers and a gold-plated piano....The couple, who collect nearly $1 million a year in salary from the network, also have use of 30 ministry-owned homes, including two sprawling multimillion-dollar oceanfront mansions in the resort town of Newport Beach, California, a mountain retreat near Lake Arrowhead and a ranch in Texas. They travel in a $7.2 million, 19-seat Canadair Turbojet, drive luxury cars, and charge everything from dinners to antiques on company credit cards according to former employees...."

And here I was thinking Jebus kicked the money changers out of the temple.

It goes without saying Crouch is against homosexuality. And, in true evangelical form, it turns out he had an illicit extra-marital affair...with a guy. In fact, he had the affair in one of the 30 homes, and the other guy was a former Trinity Broadcasting employee, Lonnie Ford. Naughty, naughty, you old fool!

Monday, March 9, 2009

March, 2009: Tony Perkins

Doing all he can to thwart stem cell research (while thousands die unnecessarily of potentially curable diseases).

From Huffington Post:

WASHINGTON — From tiny embryonic cells to the large-scale physics of global warming, President Barack Obama urged researchers on Monday to follow science and not ideology as he abolished contentious Bush-era restraints on stem-cell research. "Our government has forced what I believe is a false choice between sound science and moral values," Obama declared as he signed documents changing U.S. science policy and removing what some researchers have said were shackles on their work.

"It is about ensuring that scientific data is never distorted or concealed to serve a political agenda _ and that we make scientific decisions based on facts, not ideology," Obama said.

Researchers said the new president's message was clear: Science, which once propelled men to the moon, again matters in American life.

Opponents saw it differently: a defeat for morality in the most basic questions of life and death.

"The action by the president today will, in effect, allow scientists to create their own guidelines without proper moral restraints," Family Research Council President Tony Perkins said.