It’s a bad thing for the GOP…

when a third of your base consists of immovably ignorant people with impenetrable skulls who cling to the paranoid conspiracy theory that Obama is a Muslim. The destructive notion that it’s better to hate Obama than to defeat him keeps driving significant percentages of the GOP base to embrace any lunatic idea just so long as it feels like it’s landing a punch on Obama. Consequently you have crazy people asserting, on the basis of nothing, that he is a Muslim. You also have crazy people clinging to the cherished paranoid conspiracy theory that he was not born the US. And you have crazy people clinging to the notion that this friend of the super-rich and the corporation is an atheistic Communist (as well as a radical worshipper of Allah). And all this along with the stupidity of likening him to Hitler (which sure was a winning strategy for the Left when they did it to Bush in 2004).

Sin makes you stupid. And the sin of hating Obama rather than trying to defeat him makes a depressing number of people on the Right particularly stupid–which is a bad thing when you want to defeat a very smart political operator who treats these ridiculous conspiracy theories as a gift from God.

Catholic moral theology application: The first virtue is prudence. Prudence says, “Deal with reality as it is, not as you would like it to be. So if you disagree with somebody’s evil policies, then argue against the problem. Don’t fall for the stupid mistake of then believing any and every evil thing about that person in the hope that by doing so you can make them lose. Instead, live in reality and focus on what they are actually doing, and not on a bunch of fictitious crap that makes you look like a paranoid crazy who will believe anything.” That means (gasp!) acknowledging where your opponent is right as well as wrong.

"And your response is so calm; no hyperbole. Let’s the Rethugicans control the House, the ..."

“They Didn’t Get to Design our ..."
"How do you define truth?"

The Trump-Protecting Anti-Trumper
"When are the Antisocial Personality Disorder and the Narcissistic Personality Disorder changing from character flaws ..."

Lying Mob Boss pauses to change ..."
"None of those seven billion are terrible.One of my kids has particularly challenged me, exasperated ..."

“They Didn’t Get to Design our ..."

Browse Our Archives

Follow Us!


What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • Chris

    The religion hyperventilation I think boils down to attempted mind reading. And who cares if he’s Muslim anyway? As you note, the important things are the things he’s actually pushing…

    I don’t know if the “natural born”/birth certificate things are true our not, (much less “crazy”), but again even if right… Who cares at this point? That Biden is obviously dumber doesn’t really mean he’d be any better than Obama anyway….

    All the energy spent over the last several years really seems a waste to me….

    • Dan C

      For many conservatives, particularly primary-voting Republicans, Romney’s Mormonism caused debate. A President embracing Islam might be a bit more of a challenge to accept.

    • Ted Seeber

      People who care about rule of law *should care* about the Kenyan connection; but far too many people are more worried about looking like a bunch of racists to give any credibility to the claim.

      Besides, on rule of law, we’ve got the current train wreck of an attempt at socialism to look at, plus the legal right he now has to declare martial law (passed by Congress), plus the expansion of the war on terror into Libya.

      So while important, this is just one minor matter in which Obama seems to be totally against American tradition and law.

      And I say that as a man who was not a birther until that incredibly badly done PDF of his birth certificate came out, planting a great deal of doubt in my mind (not just from the fact it was a composite image with the layers still unmerged, but also the changes in typeface from field to field, as if it was originally done on 20 different typewriters).

      • Mark Shea

        There is no Kenyan Connection. He was born in Hawaii and is an American citizen. End of story. Move on.

        • Yeah, I wished that it were that easy. This has been an issue since even before he was elected and it may live on beyond his presidency.

        • Jack

          In all probability, yes. But, I think the birthers smell something isn’t right.
          You don’t spend 1.7M fighting crazies and saying “the short form is all there is” and then present a pdf when you could wave the paper in their faces.

          It may just be that the real BC doesn’t list BHO, Sr. as his father and therefore his whole fairy tale childhood is a lie (like just about everything)

          As for his religion, he is probably what Fr. Hardon would call a “functional atheist”

          • Mark Shea

            I think “functional atheist” is about right. My point is that he can’t simultaneously be an evangelical atheist commie *and* and zealous Islamic monotheist. But crazies believe him to be both.

            • Ah, I can see that. Though I would prefer ‘secular humanist’ though he distinctions are slight.

  • Tim

    A bit off topic, but when I google “Mark Shea”, the first site listed is “Scientologist and Enjoying it.” Since its no longer April Fools day, does that mean you are secretly Scientologist?

    Let the conspiracies begin.

    • Linebyline

      No. It means this is a Scientologist plot to make Mark look like he converted to Scientology by using their super-secret influence to pull strings at Google, and perhaps several other search engines. Soon, Archive.org will show “Scientologist” in the title of all their cached versions of Mark’s blog.

      That, or Google’s cache just hasn’t caught back up to reality yet. You’d think they of all people would know to refresh everything on April 2.

      (For the avoidance of doubt, pursuant to Poe’s Law: I am kidding about the Scientologist conspiracy. Have a nice day.)

  • Scott W.

    I have not really been following the GOP campaign, so I’m not trying to be a smart-alec, but just to dot the i’s, is any candidate floating either the Obama-Muslim or Birther stories? I seem to recall Trump fell for the latter, but afaik, he’s out. Anyone else?

  • Scott W.

    I have not really been following the GOP campaign, so I’m not trying to be a smart-alec, but just to dot the i’s, is any candidate floating either the Obama-Muslim or Birther stories? I seem to recall Trump fell for the latter, but afaik, he’s out. Anyone else?

    P.S. Man this Patheos combox is a pain.

    • Mark Shea

      Santorum, in his flat-footed Evangelical culture warrior way, both drops broad hints that Obama is a Muslim and doesn’t bother to correct dimwits who say he is one. See the article I linked. Not to correct such dumb paranoid conspiracy theories is to affirm them, if you are running for Prez. It just makes the party dumber.

      • ds

        Same way Ron Paul affirms 9/11 truthers and other kooks.

  • Scott W.

    Sorry for the duplicate post.

  • Nah, I don’t think that he is a communist. Fascist is probably the more appropriate term. I am intrigued by the “Birther” controversy as I would simply like to seek the truth in this as in all things. Further, I am delighted by what the consequences are for the administration if what the good sheriff from Az contends are indeed reliable assertions.

    My two talents.

  • Dan C

    I have said before and will say again, in general, the internet used to represent that conservatives were thinkers and liberals emoters.

    I would hesitate to suggest liberal philosophy as advancing in developing better “thought,” but they are more thoughtful “planners” now.

    Conservatives, though, have devolved into emoting from a very elevated, sophisticated level of philosophy and rhetoric, in less than a decade. This is a blog that does not traffic in such thoughtless emoting, from Mr. Shea to its commentators. Hence I enjoy it immensely.

    This is a tragedy considering I (someone from the left) used to gravitate to conservative blogs for “real thinking.”

  • Scott

    Has anyone ever bothered to ask the obvious question, was President Obama baptized at some point in his life? It is extremely hard to argue the point when one has an indelible mark of The Holy Spirit. As I understand Catholic theology, baptism is the gateway into Christian life (The Church). Whether other Christians believe or understand this does not change the truth. All you need is proper “form and matter” and your officially a Christian no matter what the conspiriacy folks believe.

    • This is interesting. The president does not refer to this event in either of his books.

    • Rosemarie

      +J.M.J+

      As I wrote below, he claims to have become a Christian at Trinity UCC in the 1990s in response to Rev. Jeremiah Wright’s preaching. However, I have never heard whether he was baptized there. His children apparently were, but I don’t know whether or not he was. You’re right; if he was validly baptized then he is indeed a Christian.

      • Martial Artist

        In conformance with Catholic canon law, your assertions concerning the validity of baptism are correct, if, and only if, he has not subsequently committed a formal act of apostasy. It is possible, after all, to forsake one’s Christianity, but it requires a definitive action on the part of the individual.

        Pax et bonum,
        Keith Töpfer

        • Rosemarie

          +J.M.J+

          Granted, but we know so little about him that we can’t say whether he committed formal apostasy any more than we can say whether he was ever baptized in the first place.

          All we can say for sure, based on his own words, is that A) he was not raised Muslim or in any religion, for that matter, and B) he now considers himself a Christian because of some kind of experience at Trinity UCC. So he is not a Muslim.

  • Rosemarie

    +J.M.J+

    While Obama is not a Muslim, I wouldn’t say that those who make that claim have absolutely no basis for it. His stepfather, Lolo Soetero, was Muslim and Obama’s school records from Indonesia do list his religion as “Islam,” probably due to his stepfather’s religion.

    However, in his own autobiography, Obama says that his mother raised him in no particular religion, but tried to give him an appreciation of all religions from an anthropological point-of-view. He also claims that he became a Christian while attending Trinity UCC (Jeremiah Wright’s church) in Chicago during the 1990s.

    So he is apparently a liberal Protestant Christian, not a Muslim. But just looking at those school records (and not taking his autobiography into account), I could see how people would then believe he was a Muslim.

  • dfp

    The worst of it is that it doesn’t matter where he was born: his mother was a US citizen, so he’s a natural-born US citizen, no matter where he was born.

    It amazes me that people keep going on about “he was born in Kenya and is lying about it” – there’s no reason whatever for him to lie about it. He could have been born on the moon for all it matters: he was born to a US citizen, end of story.

    • Jack

      You really haven’t looked into this.

      1. Mother was too young to confer that
      2. Father made him a dual
      3. Father not naturalized. (Same applies to Rubio, Jindal and maybe Santorum who won’t release relevant records)
      4. There’s the possibility that he forfeited his citizenship etc

      And, ALL of this is only true IF what BHO has said is true.

  • Martial Artist

    @dfp,

    Absolutely correct, insofar as I have been able to verify from my layman’s examination of U.S. law with regard to the relation between parentage and citizenship.

    Pax et bonum,
    Keith Töpfer

    • Dave Burns

      “Natural Born” is not the same. To my knowledge, only the POTUS and employment at Scaled Composites makes it a requirement.

      Nobody is saying that “anchor babies” are natural born.

  • Tom

    Mark, it’s interesting the nastiness that emerges when anybody questions either Obama’s religion or his citizenship. You say above, “Move along.” I am sure that there are many liberal Democrats who would agree. It doesn’t make one either a conspiracy nut or stupid to ask the questions. What is surprising to me is how easily they should have been answered and weren’t. If it were as cut and dried as you suggest, it should have been easily answered. There would be no reason to hide the fact that he was born in Kenya and not in Hawaii (if a real birth certificate could have been produced of if college records weren’t sealed.) Are we hiding the truth for the good of the nation? This reminds me of the “Stupid” idea that was floated during the Bush-Gore election that the truth wasn’t as important as ensuring stability. I assume that is what lurks in the “Move along” crowd. Nobody wants it to be true that America’s President is not only foreign born, but most likely not Christian either. But, if that is the case — there is nothing wrong with people (stupid or otherwise) asking questions. It is still America. If the constitution matters in regards to freedom of speech and freedom of religion, shouldn’t it also matter with regard to the requirement that our President actually be a citizen?

  • Peggy R

    I tend to see Obama as an atheistic communist. His political-economic ideology is communist. It is rather clear from all he says and does. He really has never wavered from this ideology. His own biographies indicate he is more like his atheist mother. He explicitly said he joined the UCC church for political reasons and to fit in the community. If he was baptized, he is officially some sort of liberal protestant Christian. His affinity for Islam is very strong and would seem to be obviously from his attachment to his father and upbringing in part in Indonesia. He had Islamic associations in college as well. His own words and actions are why some believe he is in fact a Muslim.

    Obama’s marxist ideology is of the racial variety; liberation theology is a communist/marxist ideology with racial justice in mind. See Latin America and Catholic missionaries who embraced Marxism as the means of justice.

    I don’t think he was NOT born in the US. There are questions about “natural born” since his father was a British subject. I would like the birthers to show that Stanley Ann was in Kenya. They haven’t done so yet. But, his background is murky in several ways. Not necessarily his birth and citizenship, however.

    • Peggy R

      P.S. If this analysis makes me, a woman with an advanced degree, a hater and a kook, then so be it.

      • Linebyline

        Well, being a hater and a kook has nothing to do with having an advanced degree. There are probably even places where you can get an advanced degree in being a hater or a kook (though they probably call it “philosophy”). Still, I see your point.

    • Peggy R

      PPS.

      If the public have such deep doubts about the president then it’s not the GOP’s problem. It is the president’s problem. He does nothing to allay the public’s fears, however, rational or irrational they may be. He is rarely patriotic. He opposes liberty at every chance. He champions Islam, often over Christian or American interests. He spits on our allies. He thinks the market economy, which has led to unprecedented (to use an O word) prosperity in the US and around the world, has been a failure and never worked. He does show up at a protestant church when the polls show the doubt in his Christianity. I’ll give him that.

      It is Obama’s problem, and he is responsible for solving it himself. But, that kind of responsibility is new to him, as we can see. The GOP can’t and need not fix it for him.

      • JL Liedl

        “He champions Islam, often over Christian or American interests. ”

        Please substantiate this claim.

        Also, please don’t make the mistake of conflating Christianity with what passes for “American interests” these days.

        • Peggy R

          American interests are not always Christian interests. I did not conflate them. I said one or the other.
          *Favoring GZ mosque offensive to families of deceased on 9-11. Could be anti-American and anti-Christian for those Christian families suffering.
          *There were early meetings w/9-11 families and O in which he utterly disregarded their concerns. Might have been about NYC trials for terrorists. Can’t recall topic.
          *First interviews to Arab outlets.
          *Speech in Cairo.
          *Pushing the Arab spring, disastrous for US and Christians, putting radical Islam in charge of many formerly US-friendly nations.
          *Mild, equivalency statements, if any about slaughter of Christians in Egypt and other places where radical Muslims on the rise since Arab Spring.
          *He didn’t care to support the Iranian freedom demonstrators in 09. Iran is the premier radical Islamic nation.
          *All benefit of the doubt goes to Islam, Koran burning, eg, but Christians must buckle under to HHS, eg.
          *Sweetest sound to him is Muslim call to prayer. Would a Christian really feel that way? Such a call to prayer might merit being called beautiful, but is it superior to a Christian prayer, song, etc. to a Christian? His auto-bios talk of his views on religion.
          *Rudeness to Britain on several occasions. Snubbing Brown, using Cameron as campaign poster. He doesn’t support Britain in Falklands, very bizarre.
          *He hasn’t seemed to make friends with any American allies and lost several in the middle east.
          *Russian open mic last week. Very against US interests as well as against European allies. Sold Poland down the river a few years back.
          *Favoring Honduras’ communist leader attempting to take over.

          It’s getting late, is that enough for now?

          • Peggy R

            Sorry. I got carried away and went into general anti-American moves by the man, not just in favor of Islam. But you do have to understand that the global Left and Islam share in their anti-American views. O’s in both camps as a Lefty and an Islamic sympathizer, so he’s knee deep.

            • ds

              Well, at least you don’t think he’s a reptile…um, right?

              • Mark Shea

                …and he’s tunneling under your house!

                • Linebyline

                  No, that’s the power company.

                  And to be fair, Obama has said and done some rather anti-Christian (and arguably anti-American, or at least anti-Constitution) things.

          • JL Liedl

            If a group of American citizens exercising their Constitutional right to practice their religion is offensive, then so be it. I thought conservatives were the ones who despised “political correctness?”

            Oh, and PS, constructing a gargantuan monster of an American embassy in the middle of Baghdad might be considered “anti-Muslim” to the families of the tens of thousands of Iraqi citizens who have been killed during our “liberation.”

            Oh my! He showed unprecedented interest in reaching out to a part of the world that has been systematically manipulated and exploited by the West for the past century! I suppose bombing them and financially/militarily/politically supporting their fascist leaders would have been more in line with what American presidents do. After all, interests over ethics!

            Don’t make me laugh! You can’t seriously be making the claim that the US “pushed” for the Arab spring, unless if by “pushed” you mean “gently prodded after it was already a done deal anyway.” BO was caught-footed, and only urged Mubarak to step down after it was more or less an inevitability.

            Furthermore, as you are (seemingly) a neo-con, please explain this paradox to me. How can you simultaneously support “spreading liberty” yet balk at the sight of other people exercising self-determinism and deciding what type of government they have and who runs it? Is it kind of like supporting democracy, but only when it works out for you? And do you have no moral qualms with propping up fascist thugs like Mubarak, who ruled Egypt under martial law for three decades, crushed any and all political opposition, and exacerbated the disparity of wealth, all for the sake of advancing American interests?

            Oh, what do you think he should do? Send in a SEALS team?

            Oh no! He didn’t give the Ayatollah fodder for his American meddling campaign!

            And Saudi Arabia is the premier radical Islamic nation. You choose to ignore that because that because they do what we want.

            Well when you’ve occupied someone else’s homeland for the last decade, the least you could do is not burn their holy books.

            Well I agree, he’s wrong on this one. The adhan is beautiful/cool/interesting the first few times, but it gets really annoying after a few months. Still, I’ll take an invitation to come worship God (albeit in a limited way) over sensual ad campaigns that try to convince me to buy beer and Axe body spray (so I can have lots of sex!). Yay America, a Christian nation!

            Like the uber-secular, human-rights-violating state of Israel and a Mubarak led-Egypt? Good riddance.

            • JL Liedl

              Block quotes fail. Feel free to delete this and the above comment.

          • JL Liedl

            “*Favoring GZ mosque offensive to families of deceased on 9-11. Could be anti-American and anti-Christian for those Christian families suffering.”

            If a group of American citizens exercising their Constitutional right to practice their religion is offensive, then so be it. I thought conservatives were the ones who despised “political correctness,” especially when it came at the expense of the Constitution.

            Oh, and PS, constructing a gargantuan monster of an American embassy in the middle of Baghdad might be considered “anti-Muslim” to the families of the tens of thousands of Iraqi citizens who have been killed during our “liberation.”

            “*First interviews to Arab outlets.
            *Speech in Cairo.”

            Oh my! He showed unprecedented interest in reaching out to a part of the world that has been systematically manipulated and exploited by the West for the past century! I suppose bombing them and financially/militarily/politically supporting their fascist leaders would have been more in line with what American presidents do. After all, interests over ethics!

            “*Pushing the Arab spring, disastrous for US and Christians, putting radical Islam in charge of many formerly US-friendly nations”

            Don’t make me laugh! You can’t seriously be making the claim that the US “pushed” for the Arab spring, unless if by “pushed” you mean “gently prodded after it was already a done deal anyway.” BO was caught-footed, and only urged Mubarak to step down after it was more or less an inevitability.

            Furthermore, as you are (seemingly) a neo-con, please explain this paradox to me. How can you simultaneously support “spreading liberty” yet balk at the sight of other people exercising self-determinism and deciding what type of government they have and who runs it? Is it kind of like supporting democracy, but only when it works out for you? And do you have no moral qualms with propping up fascist thugs like Mubarak, who ruled Egypt under martial law for three decades, crushed any and all political opposition, and exacerbated the disparity of wealth and all sorts of economic woes, all for the sake of advancing American interests?

            “*Mild, equivalency statements, if any about slaughter of Christians in Egypt and other places where radical Muslims on the rise since Arab Spring.”
            Oh, what do you think he should do? Send in a SEALS team?

            “*He didn’t care to support the Iranian freedom demonstrators in 09. Iran is the premier radical Islamic nation.”
            Oh no! He didn’t give the Ayatollah fodder for his American meddling propaganda campaign!

            And Saudi Arabia is the premier radical Islamic nation. You choose to ignore that because they do what we want (sometimes).

            “*All benefit of the doubt goes to Islam, Koran burning, eg, but Christians must buckle under to HHS, eg.”
            Well when you’ve occupied someone else’s homeland for the last decade, the least you could do is not burn their holy books. But shame on him for apologizing! America is NEVER WRONG!!!

            “*Sweetest sound to him is Muslim call to prayer. Would a Christian really feel that way? Such a call to prayer might merit being called beautiful, but is it superior to a Christian prayer, song, etc. to a Christian? His auto-bios talk of his views on religion.”

            Well I agree, he’s wrong on this one. The adhan is beautiful/cool/interesting the first few times, but it gets really annoying after a few months. Still, I’ll take an invitation to come worship God (albeit in an imperfect, limited way) over sensual ad campaigns that try to convince me to buy beer and rub Axe body spray all over myself (so I can have lots of sex!). Yay America, a True Christian nation!

            “*He hasn’t seemed to make friends with any American allies and lost several in the middle east.”

            Like the uber-secular, human-rights-violating state of Israel and a Mubarak led-Egypt? Good riddance.

  • Andrew

    Is the President a Muslim? I find it doubtful.

    Is the President Constiutionally eligible to be President? I don’t know. He certainly hasn’t put forward any effort to dispel the question. No, computer generated documents don’t count. When I want to get my driver’s license, I can’t bring a laptop, open it up and say see this is what my social security card, WOULD look like, if I had it with me to show you. A legal examination requires original documents if they are available.

    It is a interesting legal argument. We will likely never know certainly, at least not for a long time. If he is ineligible, it won’t be that shocking to those of us who realize 90%+ of what the federal government does is unconstitutional, so why should this be different?

    Is he an atheistic communist? That’s the most interesting question that you asked Mr. Shea. I’d argue that he certainly governs like one. Whether or not he believes in some sort of god, he governs as a practical atheist, and along lines which the Church has clearly identified with communism. Of course, the real point many of those labeling him as a communist miss, is that the GOP candidates are largely communistic as well and so is modern American “conservatism” as an ideology. When was the last time you saw a democrat or republican vote the way they did on a bill because man has an immortal soul? Or because of the duties owed to God?

    If Obama is a Christian, which he says he is, the million dollar question some talking head should ask him (and his opponent) at a debate is:

    Which of the Ten Commandments do you not agree with and why?

    It’s quite clear both sides of the aisle have jettisoned the 6th commandment. Consider the Georgetown law student of recent fame. In all the bruhaha about he supposed rights to contraception, was missed the simple fact that she isn’t married. So who does she have the right to be having sex with? Sex with anyone, male, female, with contraception or without, would be fornication. It’s a clear violation of the 6th commandment.

    We live in a world where one can claim to be a “Christian” and at the same time dictate to God which laws He should follow, instead of humbly striving to obey the Commands He gives us.

    Read your Belloc and Leo XIII. Capitalism is an unstable system. It degenerates into either Communism…and then slavery…OR socialism….and then slavery. Unless of course we get about Our Father’s work and take Option C: Catholicism.

    As Fulton Sheen said, “Communism is merely rotted capitalism.”

    pax

  • Crude

    And you have crazy people clinging to the notion that this friend of the super-rich and the corporation is an atheistic Communist

    The chinese have plenty of friends of the super-rich, and they certainly have their own corporations. I don’t think it’s proper to call Obama a communist, but he’s certainly got some serious socialist leanings.

    As for being an atheist – why not? Because he’s said now and then ‘Oh yeah, I’m Christian’ when his back was absolutely against the wall? I’ve seen the interview where he talked about his religious beliefs. Funny how it was so thin on commitment it would be an insult to deism to call it even that.

  • Joannie

    This is something I believe that the late Andrew Breitbart was going to reveal to us before his sudden death, but it seems to be this: the President’s real name is Barry (not Barack) and he was in this country as a student under the guidance of the Ayers Family in Chicago back in the late 1980’s. A retired postman has gone on record to say he met this man in 1989 and that he bragged that one day he would be the President of this country. He has this connection with the Weather Underground Movement but their ultimate goal was to have a Communist take over the leadership of this country. If you look at what he has done and is still doing it seems to add up to me. Most Americans do not want to face this reality remember Newsweek’s “We Are All Socialists Now” ? WAKE UP and face this and stop pretending that it is not happening because it is and before you all know it one day we will wake up as Slaves not as Citizens. So face the facts stop living in a fantasy world. He’s a Communist not some Muslim!

  • JL Liedl

    Wow, there is a lot of inanity being circulated here in the comments. How does Obama “act” Muslim? By doling out federal funds to have the FBI spy on innocent Muslims in NYC? By continuing aggressive, imperialistic campaigns that have killed/injured/displaced millions of Muslims in Iraq and Afghanistan? By targeting and assassinating non-combatant Muslim American citizens? Turn off the Fox News, folks.

    • kenneth

      Based on the way people throw around terms like “Socialism”, “Communism” and “Muslim” in the context of Obama, it’s clear that none of them has ever read any of the primary sources on any of these topics. Most could not even write a passable political science 101 short essay on the history and highlights of these systems if their lives depended on it. All they know is that they’ve heard that these things are the epitome of evil and that Obama, as the Worst Man Ever Born (and probably Satan’s first lieutenant), must be any or all of these things.

      • Peggy R

        I have read Marx’ Manifesto. I have an advanced degree in Econ. O talks of the same revolution and injustices as Marx.

        • Dan C

          He is not a communist. Obama is not anywhere on the economic spectrum of Marx.

          The way I view such an opinion is the perspective from a distance. I think you may be so far to the right and libertarian in your views that centrist views on the economy, such as a Roosevelt, would be considered communist. It is not. Obama is not close to communism. I suggest you communicate and begin to talk to communists. you perceive them as not arguing on good faith and this is an error.

          Obama is a pragmatic centrist. He has shifted more money into the hands of the wealthy than he has to any other group.

          • Peggy R

            Wow. I’d hate to see real marxism if this is the “center” of politics. You haven’t read the Manifesto? O’s auto-bios? His statements about social justice? The limits of the constitution on our ability to affect such ‘justice’?

            O is not ‘pragmatic’. He hasn’t negotiated with the GOP or the Church in good faith from day one. Ask Cardinal Dolan for one; or John Boehner for another.

    • Rosemarie

      +J.M.J+

      FYI, Fox News has never claimed that Obama is a Muslim.

      • JL Liedl

        No, they just bring people on, let them do it, and then fail to challenge their wild assertions.

        Just as bad as Olberman not refuting Garofalo’s insane remark that conservatives have swollen frontal lobes.

        • Peggy R

          I think the only person or persons I have seen assert that Obama is Muslim or came close to such assertion has been Graham’s son or a couple of other evangelicals who wouldn’t vote for Romney or even a Jew I think one suggested in 08. Graham has backed off an explicit opinion that O is Muslim. He says he takes O at his word that O’s a Christian.

          The problem is that he doesn’t talk or act like a Christian.

          • Rosemarie

            +J.M.J+

            I don’t remember any guests on Fox News claiming the president is a Muslim, but since I don’t watch the channel 24/7 it’s possible someone might have said that while I wasn’t watching. The reporters and commentators on the channel, OTOH, have not made that claim.

            • Peggy R

              Rosemary,
              I think Graham has skirted around it in several fora, not necessarily Fox News. In fact, I think Bret Bair did a a bit recently asserting that FOX hosts have never claimed O was Muslim. I guess in response to the recent polls.

              • Rosemarie

                +J.M.J+

                I think Bill O’Reilly mentioned it in response to Obama’s statement that “Fed by Fox News, (white males) hear Obama is a Muslim 24/7, and it begins to seep in.”

                O’Reilly replied by saying that none of the hosts on Fox News ever said that. Claiming that the network tells people that “24/7” – constantly all day and all night – is beyond preposterous.

                • Peggy R

                  I do not disagree with you, I should be clear. I was thinking of some evangelicals on some cable shows who suggested that back in 08. Not necessarily FOX. No FOX host has called O Muslim. I agree.

  • Jayjay

    I’m really glad I landed on this blog and read this post to discover that I’m not the only orthodox Roman Catholic male who doesn’t live in abject fear of the President of the United States.

    I don’t like this administration or its policies, and I really want to see candidate Barack Obama defeated in the 2012 election, however I don’t expect our president to at once don a turban (to hide his horns) and a Mao jacket and come after me on his broomstick while calling me “my pretty”, having his sights set on my little dog, too.

    I’m content to label him as a bad president who can at least speak the English language properly (unlike a certain predecessor of his that we’re all supposed to like but whom I never cared for who will remain nameless) but who, nevertheless, needs to go bye bye. President Obama governs (with a team of children and preening incompetents) from a wrong-headed political philosophy, he doesn’t lurk under my bed with the shadow people waiting for Dracula’s signal to feed on my American blood.

    But even if he is lurking under my bed, the only thing that will get rid of him is my vote for whomever his GOP opponent happens to be whose name, Mitt Romney, cannot be known at this point. Even if President Obama is, somehow, a theocratic Muslim AND an ultra secularist Pinko at one and the same time, my loathing the fact that he is all things evil to all men will not be enough to send him back to Chicago/Hawaii/Kenya/Hell/Munchkinland if I do not also vote for his principal opponent.

    If I vote for President Obama’s Green Party opponent or if I write in “Jefferson Davis Hogg” or if I stay home on election day and pray against him with all my might, with millions of other people doing the same thing because we just don’t trust that Massachussetts Mormon enough to tick a box for him even though he is gee-whiz, doo-wop, and a hula-hoop incarnate, then President Barack Obama will have another four years of lurking under my bed waiting to drink my blood like a Bloody Caesar (with Bakon vodka), along with Dracula and the shadow people. And he’ll probably help himself to that Zagnut that fell down there, too. He can’t have my Shaun Cassidy poster, though (I smell a comeback).

  • ds

    … a depressing number of people on the Right particularly stupid…
    Gee, ya think?

  • Mario Mirarchi

    Mark,

    Nice to finally agree with you on a politically related post. Everyone one should read this.

  • Jack

    14 years ago, I told my buddy to stop getting his news from Drudge.
    “No president would do that and if you actually believe that there’s a s___ stained dress, you’re out of your tree”

    I’m a little more cautious these days.

  • Kirt Higdon

    I recall people referring to “Bush derangement syndrome” but Obama derangement syndrome has that beat by a mile. A couple of Catholic novelists, one American and one Canadian, were claiming that he was the anti-Christ or a forerunner of the anti-Christ before he was even inaugurated. My personal conspiracy theory on birtherism is that Obama’s operatives revive this ridiculous controversy every so often just to make his opponents look unhinged. Not that they need much help looking unhinged, a little prodding is sufficient. And to imagine that this man who rivals George Bush as a killer of Moslems somehow favors Moslems??!! Oh well, I suppose “Ace” McCain would have killed even more had he been elected and maybe a few million Russians as well.

    • Faith Roberts

      I think people’s Obama derangement syndrome is in direct proporation to the Obama adoration syndrome. Since so many people took him for some kind of demi-god rock star, many other people reacted in the other direction. My conclusion: There are a lot of emotionally overwrought people out there not using good judgment!!!

  • Daniel Saperstein

    Enough already!
    If a guy (or gal) is good for the country, I could care less where he was born.
    He could be IVF, not that I approve, but who cares?

    • Rosemarie

      +J.M.J+

      I care because the Constitution says a president must be a natural born citizen. Either the Constitution matters or it doesn’t. Too many people in all three branches of government today seem to think it doesn’t matter. It’s distressing to think that the American people think the same way. Is the end of our country at hand?

      BTW, I’m NOT a birther. Obama was born in Honolulu, Hawaii two years after it became a state, and his mother was an American citizen. So he’s a natural born citizen and eligible for the presidency. Period.

      I only responded to this post because I can’t stand it when I hear someone effectively say, “Who cares what the Constitution says!” It’s only the founding document of our nation which all our elected officials swear to uphold (though many of them don’t live up to that oath). If no one cares about it anymore then bye-bye to all our rights and liberties.

  • astorian

    Before I make my arguments, let me say first that:

    1) I believe Barack Obama is exactly what he says he is: a very liberal Protestant.

    2) You should check out the numbers from this 2010 Pew survey.

    http://www.pewforum.org/Politics-and-Elections/Growing-Number-of-Americans-Say-Obama-is-a-Muslim.aspx#1

    Not surprisingly, the people who say Obama is a Muslim are overwhelmingly conservative Republicans. Only 6% of self-described liberal Democrats believe Obama is a Muslim.

    HOWEVER… if you look cloely, there’s anothger interesting angle to this. Among self-described liberal Democrats, only 59% believe Obama is a Christian! A whopping 31% say they “don’t know” Obama’s religion!

    Yes, it’ troubling thta about a third of conservaives believe Obama is a Muslim, but an almost EQUAL percentage of liberals “don’t know” Obama’s religion. How can they “not know”? There are only two possibilities:

    1) A lot of liberals are just plain dumb and uninformed. Or..

    2) A lot of liberals sort of believe (and secretly HOPE) that Oabam is an atheist or agnostic who pretends to be a Christian to fool the rubes and get votes.

    Richard Dawkins has already expressed that very opinion, and I think he speaks for a host of secular leftists.

    In other words, Obama’s most fervent SUPPORTERS think (and hope!!!) he’s a lying fraud who doesn’t really believe what he professes to believe!

  • Chris

    Yes, the rule of law is important.

    But breathlessly worrying about the presidents birth place when compared to things like trillion dollar bank fraud being not only ignored, but backed & rewarded?

    Thats like worrying about whether Manson had erver failed to pay a parking ticket…

    • Rosemarie

      +J.M.J+

      I agree that the birthers are wasting their time, but saying “Who cares as long as he’s good for the country” is doubly wrong. First of all, he’s not good for the country, and second, that dismissive attitude toward the Constitution is largely what got us into the mess we are in presently.

      It is foolish to saw off the branch you’re sitting on, and the Constitution is the branch we’re all sitting on that keeps us suspended above the pit of tyranny. Cut it off and we will fall into despotism and lose our cherished freedoms, which we seem to be taking too much for granted. Do we honestly believe that we can cast aside our founding document and still retain the blessings of liberty that it secures for us? Fat chance.

  • Micahel

    “immovably ignorant people with impenetrable skulls”

    Fine if that’s what you want to call me. But I won’t call you names just because I disagree with you.

    • Mark Shea

      I don’t know you. What I know is that it is painfully obvious that Obama was born in Hawaii and is a US citizen, and that nobody can simultaneously be an atheistic communist *and* a zealous monotheistic Muslim. What I also know is that Obama gives little evidence of being either and it, quite obviously, a very liberal Protestant who pays lip service to God while being what is aptly termed a “functional atheist”. People who cling to demonstrably untrue counterfactuals in the teeth of obvious evidence are, yes, immovably ignorant people with impenetrable skulls. They are also bound to keep on being defeated by reality because they refuse to engage it, preferring to hate Obama rather than defeat him.

      • Micahel

        Right…and he doesn’t lie either. You sure told me. As far as where he was born…I don’t know, I wasn’t there. At this point I don’t care as long as he’s GONE.

        • Mark Shea

          Please learn to read. I never said he doesn’t lie. I do say the evidence from sources with which he has nothing to do is that he was plainly born in Hawaii. I also point out that nobody can be an atheistic communist and a Muslim monotheist at the same time. If you want to take it personally when I point out these facts, that’s your problem, not mine.

          • Micahel

            I don’t care where he was born. You brought that up.

            My buddy Mark sez, “I also point out that nobody can be an atheistic communist and a Muslim monotheist at the same time.”

            Quite right…but since he’s a liar you’re guess about what he believes is just as valid as mine. Islam prides lying to deceive ones enemies. So if he is a Muslim then it’s OK to make the world think you’re a liberal protestant or whatever.

            Oh, and I can read. I read By What Authority and really liked it. Better than its name calling author as it turns out. I even have two copies, one for me and one to give away to seekers.

            • JL Liedl

              OK. So you think Obama is a Muslim on what basis?

            • Mark Shea

              Yes. I did bring it up. And for some reason you took it personally.

              As to your second point, Obama is not the one asserting that he is simultaneously a Muslim and an atheist. Roughly one third of the GOP base are the ones making this incoherent and ridiculous claim. Obama could be the worst liar in the world and that incoherent claim would still be utter nonsense. He cannot be both a Muslim and an atheist at the same time. So the people who say this should stop saying it because it just makes them look stupid.

              • Peggy R

                I don’t know of any one who thinks O is both Muslim and atheist. I suspect they think one or the others. I think people are confused about what O believes b/c of the incoherency from him. This is not a GOP problem. The GOP has always run away from this. It is O’s own problem if the public have doubts and a variety of confused beliefs about him.

  • Sharon Tyler

    I won’t go down this rabbit hole until someone defines Natural Born Citizen. How is
    it different than citizen? How is it lost?

    The Arpaio videos have my head spinning. Worst of all, those who believe what I thought was obvious only respond with personal attacks.

    • Martial Artist

      @Sharon Tyler,

      The problem, insofar as I can ascertain it, with your requirement that someone define “natural born citizen” is that the term is nowhere defined in U.S. law. I presume, at whatever risk that entails, and not having read the complete record of debate over the adoption of the U.S. Constititution (and being unwilling to spend the requisite time to remedy that lack of information), that the individuals at the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia presumed it to be a self-evident term.

      Pax et bonum,
      Keith Töpfer

  • Linebyline

    As I read it, the real point of all this isn’t any particular accusation. It’s “hating Obama rather than trying to defeat him.”

    Let’s say that any of the above accusations was proven (or proven to be bogus) tomorrow. It wouldn’t matter. We’d still be in the middle of a huge mess. And in the mean time, allowing ourselves to be consumed by anger (or, yes, even hatred) does us no good and only helps those who would manipulate us for their own ends. Like Obama.

    • Peggy R

      Of course, he must be defeated in November….sooner is acceptable as well.

  • Samantha Thomas

    At times, I find this so tedious.

    FWIW, the #1 birther—Jerome Corsi is still uncritically accepting the Shroud of Turin as the authentic burial cloth of Christ. Check it out: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EnnIjHh8qIU
    I wouldn’t be surprised to find he’s also a Fatimite.

    FWIW,Uber-conservative Bill O’Reilly has conducted the most thorough investigation into the birther claims and found NOTHING. Check it out:
    http://youtu.be/I-U_G8Yad_k

    Now, will someone please refute the latest conspiracy that Heather Moore was fired for reporting on the Arpaio conference. It’s possible that the sexists at CBS just found a better looking reporterette. http://tinyurl.com/moorearpaio

    • Mark Shea

      Bad news. I think the Shroud is genuine too. I also think Mary appeared at Fatima. Don’t see what that has to do with this.

  • Samantha Thomas

    That’s not what I mean by a Fatimite:

    http://www.fatimachallenge.com

    • Mark Shea

      Ah! Third Secret Conspiracy Theory nuttery. Gotcha.

  • Samantha Thomas

    Precisely. They’re got the real Paul VI, Veronica Lueken of Bayside, and NOW Heather Moore locked away in a dungeon.
    http://trumpetersmission.com/messages_chronology.php

    • S. Murphy

      That’s nothing compared to the Fourth Secret: that the world will end the next time the Chicago Cubs win the World Series.

      • Samantha Thomas

        Seriously! Is that true?

        • ds

          I’m more concerned about the sun going red giant than the cubs winning the world series.

          • S. Murphy

            Yes, ds, that will probably happen sooner…

        • S. Murphy

          No, but if they win the pennant, go to confession!