Paul Crouch died of heart failure on Saturday, at 79. Forty years ago, he founded the Trinity Broadcasting Network, now the country’s most successful religious TV enterprise. In a good year, TBN takes in close to $100,000,000 in tax-exempt donations, mostly from lower-income Americans.
If you’re not familiar with Crouch and his wife Janice, they are the Jim and Tammy Faye that time forgot.[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="499"]Paul and Jan Crouch[/caption]
Here‘s a little flavor:
Janice Crouch, called “Mama” on the air, is known for her pink-tinged wigs, which look like huge swirls of cotton candy, and for talking emotionally about the Lord’s blessings. Mr. Crouch, or “Papa,” is relentlessly upbeat as he quotes flurries of Bible verses on signature programs like “Praise the Lord.”
The New York Times published an exposé of the Crouches’ financial tricks last year. It tells you volumes about how the darling duo spent all that revenue from donations, TV rights, and investments.
Paul Crouch, Who Founded Trinity Broadcasting Network and Made Millions Off the Backs of Gullible Viewers, is Dead
Paul Crouch, the 79-year-old founder of the Trinity Broadcasting Network, died yesterday morning from what appear to be heart problems.
While Crouch will be remembered in religious circles for starting the world’s largest Christian-owned cable station, let’s not forget how wealthy he made himself on the backs of gullible viewers who were asked to send his station (and, thereby, him) money. It was the prosperity gospel at work: Give us money and God will reward you… even though the Crouches always seemed to be the ones getting all the rewards.
More Than 100 Days After His Assassination, Police Are No Closer to Capturing Dr. Narendra Dabholkar’s Killers
Dr. Narendra Dabholkar was assassinated in mid-August, presumably because his battle against superstition and irrationality upset a few too many religious extremists.
The New York Times, yesterday, published an obituary of “psychic” Sylvia Browne that is strikingly accurate without giving her more credit than she’s due.
What makes it worth reading aren’t the descriptions of the major details of her life, but how the reporter suggests that her claim to fame was suspect all along.
This is how William Yardley puts it: