"Like fundamentalist Christians in late antiquity, fundamentalist Christians today want to make of themselves victims; a political theology that thrives on claims of being marginalized and persecuted requires a steady diet of martyrs. It is no accident that Norwegian conservative Christian and terrorist Anders Breivik called on conservatives to “embrace martyrdom.” The connection between Breivik and religious conservatives in America is a very real one.”
|—||John Fugelsang on the vocal opposition to anti-bullying programs in schools from some on the religious right. (via liberal-life)|
CNN’s Jack Cafferty:
Forget about the separation of church and state… there’s reason to believe that religion might have a whole new meaning for the next occupant of the White House.
The Daily Beast reports that two of the Republican candidates for president - Michele Bachmann and Rick Perry - are “deeply associated” with a theocratic strain of Christian fundamentalism that’s called Dominionism.
For those of you who haven’t heard of it before, and I was one who hadn’t - stand by cause this is “out there.”
The Daily Beast writes how Dominionists believe that Christians have a God-given right to rule all earthly institutions. Dominionism finds its roots in a small fringe sect called Christian Reconstructionism. People who advocate replacing U.S. law with the laws of the Old Testament, including the death penalty for homosexuality and abortion. swell.
Bachmann appeared in a documentary for one of these groups called “truth in action ministries.” Also, she often praises or cites different religious leaders connected to such beliefs.
As for Perry, there’s a group called “the new apostolic reformation” that sees him as their ticket to power. They talk about “taking dominion over American society” and hope that Perry can claim the so-called “mountain” of government. This group was also involved in Perry’s prayer vigil in Houston a couple of weeks ago.
Critics suggest the Daily Beast’s examples show so-called Dominionist groups attaching to the candidates.
And the website Newsbusters - which claims to expose liberal media bias - says that the Daily Beast “went a few more steps off the deep end” by publishing this piece.
We’ve reached out to both campaigns for a response but haven’t heard anything back yet.
I tried to find video of this Cafferty segment without success - the only one’s I found were Newsbusters and other right wing bloggers and it appears that they omitted any real discussion of what dominionism is. Maybe Cafferty didn’t discuss it in detail as some of the comments to the blog post indicate readers were also having to look up “dominionism.” Anyone catch it live?
Regardless, I am glad that this alarming aspect of Perry and Bachmann is getting wider exposure. Lots of moderates watch CNN.
Dismissing this murderous act as the work of “a lone madman” ignores a more detailed study of the killer’s motivation.
No doubt we will learn more over the coming days, but the early signs are, in fact, that the perpetrator was a “blond, blue-eyed Norwegian” with “political traits towards the right, and anti-Muslim views”. Not surprisingly, the man’s intentions were neither linked to these “traits”, nor to his postings on “websites with Christian fundamentalist tendencies”. Any influence “remains to be seen”; echoes of Oklahoma 1995. [I had forgotten this aspect of the Oklahoma bombing.]
If we allow this to happen, we will be doing the world a great disservice, not least because the new right is on the rise across the West - and Oklahoma was proof that its followers are capable of immense destruction.
All of this takes place with the collusion of Western governments which are themselves showing right-wing tendencies towards double-speak on matters of respect and tolerance for minorities. If you are even remotely “different” in Europe today, especially if you are a Muslim, you are eyed with suspicion and must go out of your way to “prove” your loyalty to a state which, if the truth was made known, would get rid of you if only it had the guts to pass the necessary legislation to do so. In some cases, such legislation is virtually in place in the guise of “anti-terror” measures.
All of this is backed by a vociferous and influential right-wing media which supports Israel right or wrong - and a pro-Israel lobby which acts as if it is untouchable. Given the political context across the West, it probably is.
Attacks against the left
It is significant that the target of the Norwegian “madman” appears to have been the left-leaning Labour Party, both in Oslo and on the island where the shootings took place. Across Europe, the left has been forming alliances with Muslim groups to fight fascism and racism of all kinds, and it cannot be a coincidence that The politics of multiculturalism in the new Europe, a collection of essays from across the continent, published in 1997, concluded almost without exception that “the challenge” facing Europe was the presence of large Muslim communities in “our” midst. Anyone who claims therefore, that the perpetrator’s “right-wing traits” and “anti-Muslim views”, or even links with “Christian fundamentalist” websites are irrelevant is trying to draw a veil over the unacceptable truths of such “traits” and expecting us to believe that right-wing ideology is incapable of prompting someone towards such criminality.
Violence born of hate, intolerance and fear intended to instill more fear and hate is terrorism.
It could also be called “Threat Level: Jesus” or “Watch Out! There’s a Marxist Under the Bed!” or “Satan Loves Diversity.” It’s interesting that there are Christian conservatives now commenting on my posts, claiming that Breivik wasn’t a Christian conservative because (enter various reasons here). The thing is, he called himself that. Sorry. By the same argument, Catholics consider themselves Christian, but many Christian fundamentalists don’t recognize Catholicism as Christian either. Same with Mormonism. I guess we’ll just have to let God sort it all out in the End.
I don’t know how long the video below will stay up (they’re being pulled off of YouTube and another pops up) but if this link fails, you can search for it by the title which Breivik gave it, “Knights Templar 2083“: LINK
Some screen shots from the video are below, and a description of Breivik’s manifesto and the video from the New York Times:
On Saturday, Norway’s TV2, citing police sources, reported that the suspect uploaded a video to YouTube and a 1,500-page manifesto, written in English, to the Norwegian Web site Freak.no just hours before the attacks.
Both the manifesto, “2083: A European Declaration of Independence,” and the YouTube video were signed “Andrew Berwick,” an apparent Anglicization of Anders Breivik. Both also make extensive reference to the Crusades and the supposed threats to Christian Europe posed by Muslim immigrants and leftist political leaders…
The video’s captions call on conservatives to “embrace martyrdom.” The text also says that if “the multiculturalist elites of Europe continue to refuse to voluntarily transfer political and military power to our conservative revolutionary forces,” then World War II “is likely going to appear as a picnic compared to the coming carnage.”
The video’s extensive text also bemoans the fact that postwar “Europe never had any politicians of the McCarthy caliber.” It complains of “the demonization of cultural conservatives” and the “persecution and vilification of nationalists” by “liberal elites,” who are described as “cultural Marxists.”
An image of President Obama appears at one point in the video, as the text describes a strategy of cultural Marxists to “systematically vilify ancestral heroes and instead glorify new, more appropriate ‘idols’ who adhere to Marxism.”
Watch the video above and try to tell me that many of these images and ideas (aside from the Knights Templar bullshit) ARE NOT typical teaparty fare, that they’re not something we’ve all grown accustomed to here in America.
In contradiction to the hostility to Darwinism shared by many of its constituents, the American right is evolving rapidly before our eyes. The project of creating an American version of Burkean conservatism has collapsed. What has replaced it is best described as triple fundamentalism — a synthesis of Biblical fundamentalism, constitutional fundamentalism and market fundamentalism.