The Shutdown: brought to you by the Religious Right

The intransigence we’ve seen of late from the Tea Party minority in the GOP is just the tip of the iceberg. The motivations are becoming clearer, and the source of this great “we’re gonna get our way even though we are a small minority” maneuver is too.

Apparently, some folks are doing this because they believe they finally have the Obama presidency in an endgame. Saith sage Sarah Palin, “Defaulting on our national debt is an impeachable offense, and any attempt by President Obama to unilaterally raise the debt limit without Congress is also an impeachable offense.”

The phrase “wascally wabbit” comes to mind.

It’s also coming to light that much of this debacle is coming directly from my old friends, the Christian fundamentalists. Here’s Frank Schaeffer, apostate and son of Religious Right powerhouse Francis Schaeffer:

Do you know who launched the shutdown? Hint: He’s Southern, white and an ardent evangelical who serves as an elder in his fundamentalist church. His name is Mark Meadows. He wrote the letter to John Boehner signed by the congressional Tea Party radicals that launched the shutdown. The Tea Party’s no compromise hostage taking tactics weren’t born out of a vacuum. They have the air of the intransigence of doctrinal certainties about them.

You can’t understand the radical hostage-taking right in Congress today outside of the context of the evangelical battles with the very idea of compromise. (Maybe I’m especially attuned to this fact because my late father Francis Schaeffer was a religious right leader.) Sure, there are a handful of Ayn Rand/groupies and libertarians thrown in and sure the Koch brothers are following their own crazy Bircher agenda while inadvertently financing the demise of the US government, but none of these folks represent the true base of the Tea Party/Republican Party.

“The media have been analyzing the shutdown but largely ducking the truth. Until the media expose the beliefs of the religious extremist as the root cause of the shutdown nothing can change. Want to know why the Tea Party folks seem to take it on faith they’re right and the polls are wrong? They have been trained by their churches and pastors to ignore facts and trust their “hearts.” From global warming denial, to accepting Jesus as their personal savior no fact need apply, it’s all about trusting a web of myth, feeling and bigotry over anything that can be argued.

If you ignore these guys, they do not go away. Quite the opposite.

ADDITIONAL: Hard to know what to say to obtuseness and smoke-screening like the below comment from Joe/k/Ben. I suppose it comes down to this, good sir or madam: citizens of the Religious Right are guided in everything they do by a sense that they are acting as God’s agents. If you think Mr. Meadows was acting in an a-religious, purely political capacity, you do not know how Christian fundamentalists do business. I know, firsthand.

Bash Obama all you want (I’m no Obama defender), but it won’t change the source of our recent shutdown.

The fundamentalists took over the entire Southern Baptist denomination by leveraging a minority into positions of power until they could work their will unimpeded, against the majority. They would love nothing more than to repeat that on the national stage. That won’t be good for anybody except them. If you think that assertion is incorrect, by all means show me your evidence.

ADDITIONALLY ADDITIONAL: Well, that was lively, at least, if remarkably full of rouge sardines.

Religious extremists, i.e., fundamentalists, are indeed aswim in an unusual mindset. Here’s a good place to see exactly what that means, in the words of fundamentalists themselves: Rapture Ready.

James Heflin

Author: James Heflin

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