Now to the news.
Nathan points us to this Anna Quindlen column that illustrates the ridiculous quality of our political dialogue. Religious conservatives demand that their politicians hate gays, abortion and evolution, but don't demand that they actually attend to basic human needs:
"The truth is that America is so rich that political leaders could actually produce some variant of that miracle if they had the will. And, I suppose, if they thought there were votes in it. Enough with the pious sanctimony about gay marriage and abortion. If elected officials want to bring God talk into public life, let it be the bedrock stuff, about charity and mercy and the least of our brethren. Instead of the performance art of the presidential debate, the candidates should come to Holy Apostles and do what good people, people of faith, do there every day—feed the hungry, comfort the weary, soothe the afflicted. And wipe down the tables after each seating. Here's a prayer for every politician: pasta, collard greens, bread, cling peaches. Amen."My frustration with religious conservatives grows with each day. As I have said numerous times, I believe they have replaced reason with "faith" (which means to them what they believe) and refuse to reassess once they have made up their mind. As a result, they seem completely unwilling to reassess how they decided that Bush was a good Christian and would be a good President. I fear, with some reason, that since they don't believe they erred, there is no reason to look at their process, and so means they will likely vote for whoever the GOP throws up there--anti-science, pro-torture--whatever, all framed in religious rhetoric. Ten bucks says that we will all hear Christians justify voting for Rudy or Romney or Huckabee because they "aren't comfortable" voting for a black or woman for President. "America just isn't ready for that."
Yep, but we have been ready, evidently, for an idiot President who has destroyed our constitution.
Speaking of the competition, Mike Huckabee was asked about the death penalty in the GOP debate last night (no I didn't and wouldn't watch--I don't watch the Democratic debates either) and the question was framed as "What would Jesus Do." Huckabee recognized the disconnect for people who are pro-life, but cheer the death penalty, but then dodged and said that there was a difference between killing someone who was judged guilty and an innocent baby. Fine. But what about the race, class and regional biases to capital punishment? And what about those who might be innocent? Anderson Cooper followed up and restated the WWJD part, to which Huckabee responded:
"Jesus was far too smart to seek public office."Unbelievable, and telling. I think far too many religious conservatives see some kind of purposeful disconnect between actually living the Christian life and acting in politics. One of my friends has suggested that almost directly--that when Bush does bad stuff in office, it doesn't distract from his Christian faith, because that is "part of the job." Huckabee reiterates that here. Instead of addressing what Jesus might actually have to say about difficult issues, he suggests that Jesus would not be political, but then asserts that his faith in Jesus is what makes him the best candidate.
How about the guy leading in national polls? America's Mayor, or The Man Who Loves 9-11. The media tends to ignore a lot about this guy--including the fact that he chose the World Trade Center as the terrorism command center because it was close to his office and he used the site to carry on his affair with his now wife. Turns out that there is more of that type of corruption:
As New York mayor, Rudy Giuliani billed obscure city agencies for tens of thousands of dollars in security expenses amassed during the time when he was beginning an extramarital relationship with future wife Judith Nathan in the Hamptons, according to previously undisclosed government records.
It gets worse. Mr. 9-11 is also accused of actually profiting from relationships to people who sheltered terrorists, including Khalid Sheikh Mohammed.
The contradictory and stunning reality is that Giuliani Partners, the consulting company that has made Giuliani rich, feasts at the Qatar trough, doing business with the ministry run by the very member of the royal family identified in news and government reports as having concealed KSM—the terrorist mastermind who wired funds from Qatar to his nephew Ramzi Yousef prior to the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center, and who also sold the idea of a plane attack on the towers to Osama bin Laden—on his Qatar farm in the mid-1990s.Just imagine the media outcry if that were Hillary Clinton or John Edwards?
I think that is all I can handle today.