Occupy the National Prayer Breakfast

If you’re not already following the Tea Party Jesus tumblr, start doing so now.

The formula is as jarringly effective as it is simple: Take verbatim quotes from public figures in politics and religion and place them in the mouth of Jesus of Nazareth.

The example here shows how this works. The quote is from Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney. “I’m not concerned with the very poor,” Romney said this morning on CNN.

That’s appalling. I didn’t need any help to understand that much. But seeing those words in the context of this earnest, devotional picture of Jesus Christ reminds me of just how utterly, abysmally outrageous Romney’s statement is.

The word “antichrist,” where it actually appears in the Bible, doesn’t have anything to do with the Beast of Revelation or the fantasies of End Times “prophecies.” It has to do with this. Precisely this.

A very generous reading of Romney’s remark would be that what he meant was that “the very poor” will be helped by America’s social safety net. “We have a safety net there,” Romney said. “If it needs repair, I’ll fix it.”

But that’s not true. Or else his other campaign pledges are not true. “I’ll fix it” directly contradicts what Mitt Romney has been saying for months he plans to do to the safety net for the very poor. As Matt Yglesias put it, “Mitt Romney praises safety net he wants to shred.”

Jared Bernstein looks closely at what Mitt Romney has pledged to do to that safety net and thinks it means we should be very concerned about the very poor in a Romney administration:

Though Gov Romney recognized that “…we have food stamps, we have Medicaid, we have housing vouchers…” he neglected to make the following four points:

1) his budget slashes, and I mean SLASHES, domestic spending outside of defense.

2) he’s endorsed Rep Paul Ryan’s budget (now the House Republican Budget) which gets two-thirds of its $4.5 trillion in cuts from low-income programs (and uses the cuts to pay for tax cuts for the wealthy).

3) the Gov’s own tax plan actually raises taxes on those in the bottom fifth of the income scale (by $160 per year; by getting rid of a refundable credit for poor kids and cutting the EITC relative to current policy) — while cutting taxes for the very richest households by about $460K/year.

4) he’s said he wants to block grant these low income safety net programs – i.e., instead of the federal program, states run it based on an annual grant, a fixed amount that does not go up or down based on need – and that’s a great way to rip some big holes in the safety net.

So in context, Mitt Romney’s statement — “I’m not concerned about the very poor” — isn’t just appalling, it’s also flamboyantly dishonest.

And as that picture above from Tea Party Jesus reminds us, it’s the exact opposite of what Jesus said. It is opposed to Jesus.

Tomorrow morning, at the Hilton Washington International Ballroom in Washington, many of the most powerful people in the world will gather for the 60th annual National Prayer Breakfast. Attendance at and participation in this annual ritual is politically necessary for many government figures — a defensive measure required to avoid the demonization that would ensue if they dared to be absent. But many of the very wealthy, very powerful people attending are enthusiastic about the event.

And those who tend to be most enthusiastic about it tend also to be those most opposed to Jesus. The National Prayer Breakfast is a celebration of power and a celebration of the powerful. It is organized by a group dedicated to celebrating power — The Family. As Jeff Sharlet describes it:

The Family’s only publicized gathering is the National Prayer Breakfast, which it established in 1953 and which, with congressional sponsorship, it continues to organize every February in Washington, D.C. Each year 3,000 dignitaries, representing scores of nations, pay $425 each to attend. Steadfastly ecumenical, too bland most years to merit much press, the breakfast is regarded by the Family as merely a tool in a larger purpose: to recruit the powerful attendees into smaller, more frequent prayer meetings, where they can “meet Jesus man to man.”

And the “Jesus” those recruits are going to meet in those groups is the “Jesus” of the powerful, the blasphemous Jesus of power who isn’t concerned about the very poor.

Which is why I’m very pleased to read about The People’s Prayer Breakfast.

Occupy Breakfast,” writes Jeremy John:

What does it mean to be a Christian when organizations such as The Family create a Jesus that does not hear the prayers of the poor? An organization that prays to the powerful in place of God? That participates in the global crucifixion of the poor by turning Jesus’ cross into a social ladder for politicians to climb upwards, past the broken body of Christ? To cultivate relationships with dictators?

To cultivate the most powerful for political influence, to create an elite society for the elite, is that listening to the prayers of the people?

… Our political class does not hear the prayers of the poor, they hear the “prayers” of corporate lobbyists who fund their campaigns. And they hear the prayers of Christians such as Doug Coe and The Family at the National Prayer Breakfast, because they offer connections, votes, and money.

This is not the way that Christians pray politically. If we are to take one political message from the entirety of the Scriptures it is that God hears the prayers of the poor, the downtrodden, and the oppressed, and acts through the narrative of history both for the daily bread of the poor and to make right their conditions of oppression. And if we ourselves do not listen, we face the judgement of a God who does hear those prayers.

Amen.

Since today is the feast day of St. Brigid, let me commend a prayer of hers that might be said before the meal at the People’s Prayer Breakfast:

I should welcome the poor to my feast,
For they are God’s children.
I should welcome the sick to my feast,
For they are God’s joy.
Let the poor sit with Jesus at the highest place,
And the sick dance with the angels.

God bless the poor,
God bless the sick,
And bless our human race.
God bless our food,
God bless our drink,
All homes, O God embrace.

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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • Anonymous

    Have you noticed how much the Family sounds like Nicolae Carpathia’s organization?

    Co-incidence or conspiracy–you decide!

    Kraw–giggle–krawk!

  • Consumer Unit 5012

     

    Have you noticed how much the Family sounds like Nicolae Carpathia’s organization?

    It’s also one of the nicknames for La Cosa Nostra.  Which also fits.  “Nice job y’got here. Senator.  Be a SHAME if something were to HAPPEN to it…”

  • Anonymous

    What is the difference between The Family and That Thing Of Ours? Well, one’s a bunch of greedy, power-hungry racketeers; the other is a criminal syndicate based in Sicily. /rimshot

  • Anonymous

    “We wantcha to do those poor schmucks on the street.  We want you to take care of ’em all for us.”

  • http://apolarity.tumblr.com Adrenalin Tim

    I’ll drink (“a great lake of finest ale”) to that!

  • Anonymous

    I should like a great lake of finest ale
    For the King of kings.
    I should like a table of the choicest food
    For the family of heaven.
    Let the ale be made from the fruits of faith,
    And the food be forgiving love.

    Somehow I suspect Brigid would have a few things to say about “block-ranting
    Medicaid to the states and capping its growth at 1 to 2 percent a year.” (from that WaPo blog Fred linked)

  • Nathaniel

    “The poor shall always be with you” is meant to be a sad statement of fact, not an imperative.

  • Anonymous

    “We had a bishop this morning and what do you think he said?

    “The most beneficent promise made us in the Bible is this,’The poor
    ye have always with you.’ They were put here in order to keep us
    charitable.”

    “The poor, please observe, being a sort of useful domestic animal. If I
    hadn’t grown into such a perfect lady, I should have gone up after
    service and told him what I thought.”
    -Daddy-Long Legs, by Jean Webster

  • friendly reader

    I think that my favorite Tea Party Jesus picture is this one, which I believe is of the woman with the years-long menstrual ailment that has left her unclean and separate from society. You know, the kind of ailment that Planned Parenthood might a poor woman find treatment for… The people who choose these photos are smart.

  • Amanda

    The poor and sick are all welcome at Brigid’s lake of beer! :-)

  • http://www.facebook.com/EarBucket David Coulter

    Hi, I’m Dave, I do Tea Party Jesus, and I can’t express how delighted I am to see my work on Fred’s page.

  • http://apolarity.tumblr.com Adrenalin Tim

    Glad you dropped by, Dave. Out of curiosity, do you have anything to do with the other Tea Party Jesus that Fred linked last week?

  • http://www.facebook.com/EarBucket David Coulter

    Nope, that’s completely unrelated. It annoyed me for a couple of days, but I’m pretty much over that.

  • Anonymous

     Hi, I’m L, and I can’t express how delightfully twisted I find your work.  Please don’t stop.

  • http://profiles.google.com/marc.k.mielke Marc Mielke

    I believe Mitt Romney was being honest when he said that he doesn’t care about the very poor. Remember how much money he has, though; to him EVERYBODY is ‘very poor’. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Charity-Brighton/100002974813787 Charity Brighton

    I like that about him. Most politicians pretend to care about you, but Romney openly admits that he couldn’t give a damn. I’m envisioning a post-compassion era of politics, where politicians compete with each other to see who has the most devil-may-care rebellious attitude and can dismiss as many people as possible. Romney should put on a leather jacket, flip off the entire country, and tear off into the wilderness on his motorbike to the beat of Insane Clown Posse. At least then no one can call him bland.

  • Matri

    It would cause him to win the elections, because he would be running his campaign in the sneakiest, dirtiest, most underhanded way imaginable: He’d be telling the truth!

  • Jeff Weskamp

    The Insane Clown Posse have recorded several songs condemning rich folks who won’t help those in need (Piggie Pie, The Killing Fields, etc.).  So even they have more concern for the poor than someone claiming to be a devout Christian.

    I personally believe that the sort of things Romney says are a hundred times more blasphemous against Jesus that simply calling Him a bunch of dirty names.  And yet, people like Romney can never see that.

  • Amaryllis

    “And her nurse fell ill on the road, and sent saint Brigid and another maiden with her, to the house of a certain man who had ale, that they might ask for a drink of ale for the sick woman. And obtaining nothing there, they returned to the inn. Then Saint Brigid, inspired by the grace of God, went down to the well  and trusting in God, filled her jug with water. And forthwith it was made into the finest ale; and she gave it to her nurse, who having tasted it, at once rose up hale and sound.”
    (from Larga Manus Brigide as sung by Canty, based on MS 80, Trinity College, Dublin; tr. Dr. Jamie Reid-Baxter)

    I guess the “certain man” wasn’t concerned about the poor, either.

    Happy St. Brigid’s Day!

  • Anonymous

    Here’s what Benen had to say about this:
    Romney’s line this morning is just a mess.
    http://maddowblog.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/02/01/10288647-romney-rejects-concern-for-the-very-poor

    I appreciate your take far more.
    Let’s not even beat around the bush. Romney is not a mess. He’s not confused, he’s not misleading us, he’s not “not very smart”.

    Mitt Romney is a filthy goddamned liar, and he’s lying his way into power.

  • Lori

     
    and he’s lying his way into power.  

     

    Well, he’s trying any way. At least at this point though, he’s not doing all the well at it. 

    PAC money combined with the rotten economy will keep him competitive, but the election will not be the bad times cake walk it would normally be for a challenger. Recent polling has Mitt losing to Obama in Ohio for Pete’s sake. Things can obviously still change, but if Mitt can’t take Ohio it’s going to be very, very difficult for him to win the election. 

    Which is a long way of saying that I’m hopeful that a majority of my fellow citizens aren’t falling for his (painfully obvious) crap.  

  • Matri

     

    Which is a long way of saying that I’m hopeful that a majority of my
    fellow citizens aren’t falling for his (painfully obvious) crap.

    Unfortunately, he isn’t the sole producer of crap.

  • Anonymous

    he’s not doing all the well at it

    That’s what grinds my gears about the whole process. Gingrich or Romney or Santorum will stand up there and say “Obama is the food stamp President” or “global warming is a hoax” or “gay marriage threatens traditional marriage.”

    And the majority of our press corps will shake their heads and cluck their tongues about how confused the Republicans are. At best.

    Then you have your David Gregorys and Mark Halperins who will begin the fellatio process right there on national television.

  • Firebert

    The Family: People who call themselves Christians, even though they wouldn’t recognize Christ if He were kicking over their money-changing table.

  • Ned Netterville

    Luke 10:25-37 New International Version (NIV) The Parable of the Good Samaritan
    25 On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?” 26 “What is written in the Law?” he replied. “How do you read it?”

    27 He answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with
    all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’[a];
    and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’[b]”
    28 “You have answered correctly,” Jesus replied. “Do this and you will live.”
    29 But he wanted to justify himself, so he asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”

    30 In reply Jesus said: “A man was going down from Jerusalem to
    Jericho, when he was attacked by robbers. They stripped him of his
    clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. 31 A priest
    happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he
    passed by on the other side. 32 So too, a Levite, when he came to the
    place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33 But a Samaritan, as
    he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity
    on him. 34 He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and
    wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, brought him to an inn and
    took care of him. 35 The next day he took out two denarii[c] and gave
    them to the innkeeper. ‘Look after him,’ he said, ‘and when I return, I
    will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.’
    36 “Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?”
    37 The expert in the law replied, “The one who had mercy on him.”
    Jesus told him, “Go and do likewise.”

    Notice,
    if you please, that the Good Samaritan used his own personal resources
    to succor the stranger, his less-fortunate neighbor. Unlike some
    progressives would have it, he did not seek or use OPM to care for the
    stranger. (OPM: sounds like opium, is equally addicting, stands for
    other people’s money.) Had Jesus done that, he would have used the force
    of government to take money from some of his neighbors to succor the
    stranger, making him a co-conspirator in theft and making the stranger
    dependent on the government dole instead of God.

    if anyone takes this as an endorsement of Romney or any of his ilk (viz., politician, public official), that one is an idiot or a rogue.
     

  • http://www.nightphoenix.com Amaranth

    Okay…but Jesus in this case wasn’t giving a treatise on the proper channels for individuals and governments to care for other people. The point of the story is to illustrate who those “other people” are. Trying to turn the story into a commentary against government assistance or welfare or whatever is, IMO, putting words in Jesus’ mouth that aren’t there.

  • Matri

    It’s not putting words in Jesus’ mouth. It’s pointing out how the “evil government programs” are more Christ-like than the people who purportedly serve His will.

  • Lee B.
  • http://profiles.google.com/marc.k.mielke Marc Mielke

    Then the Romans used OPM to hire Centurions to crucify the shit out of roadside robbers so Good Samaritans wouldn’t have to take care of their victims anymore. Because robbers suck and are bad for business. And Romans like their roads, also built with OPM. 

    Not really an endorsement of the death penalty, but that’s just how Romans rolled. 

  • Anonymous

    But of course he paid out of pocket–he was a Muslim gay person Samaritan!  They are not deserving of our safety net!  Safety nets aren’t for people who need them, they’re for people who deserve them!

    OK, I’m going to stop before I make myself sick.

  • http://www.blogger.com/home?pli=1 Coleslaw

    Notice,
    if you please, that the Good Samaritan used his own personal resources 
    to succor the stranger, his less-fortunate neighbor. Unlike some 
    progressives would have it, he did not seek or use OPM to care for the 
    stranger. (OPM: sounds like opium, is equally addicting, stands for 
    other people’s money.) Had Jesus done that, he would have used the force
    of government to take money from some of his neighbors to succor the 
    stranger, making him a co-conspirator in theft and making the stranger 
    dependent on the government dole instead of God.

    Jesus frequently used OPM to aid others. IIRC, he was supported by a couple of women of independent means. When he fed the 5,000, he started with someone else’s loaves and fishes. (John 6:9, “9 “There is a lad here who has five barley loaves and two fish; but what are they among so many?”) He paid his taxes with a coin he found in another fish’s mouth. 

  • Lori

     
    Did he even have his own money? 

     

    He worked prior to starting his ministry, but there’s no indication that he had any income from work once he started preaching. Several of the apostles were noted to have continued to work at least part of the time, but not Jesus. He apparently lived off supporters and miracles, not work. Worthless slacker. /sarcasm

  • Anonymous

    So there’s the possibility that some if not all might have been doing the occasional odd job for food and drink?  I mean, a carpenter could make good money or at least a decent living coming into town with twelve strong backs and a message of hope.

    Would that make him and his disciples migrant workers? /pure_innocence

  • Lori

    Ha! IIRC there is some question about the translation of Joseph’s profession and Jesus may have been something other than a carpenter. 
    Still, your point stands.

    They had to be getting money from somewhere because they a group budget, but that communal purse is commie nonsense of the worse sort. Several of the apostles were fishermen who owned their own boats. What could be worse than abandoning a thriving entrepreneurial concern to join a commune run by a bum?  

  • Anonymous

    So I had to pursue this line of thinking, and I was surprised that there’s actually some debate.  The greek word for carpenter ‘tekton’ means a lot more than just ‘guy who works with wood.’ (/beavis) It means architect, designer, engineer, even mason.  (Let the conspiracy theories commence!  Though I’m pretty sure Jesus would not have worn a fez or driven a tiny little car– er, wagon?) There’s also debate that the term is used in the Talmud metaphorically as a ‘scholar.’

    Perhaps surprisingly, in the area of “Professions in the Levant at the beginning of the Common Era,” it’s more complicated than that, as well. =D

  • Caffinatedlemur

    You’ve got your conspiracy theories wrong. Shriners wear fezzes and drive around in little tiny cars. Masons are just the white old guys who may (or may not, if we’re counting Rosicrucians) be running the show from the shadow.

  • http://redwoodr.tumblr.com Redwood Rhiadra

    All Shriners are also Freemasons – it’s a requirement to join. (My dad is a Mason, my stepfather is both.)

  • P J Evans

    Masons wear aprons, I think. Probably not ruffled gingham,  but I like the image in my mind….

  • JohnK

    I find it slightly irritating that tax money is always considered — even by some liberals — as “other people’s money”. I pay taxes too. Why are my interests less important than, say, that of taxpayers who support wars? Why should I feel bad for advocating that the tax money that we all contribute go towards some of the things I want? This “other people’s money” thing is such horseshit and I don’t think it’s fair to engage with it as if it’s something that’s even “technically” true.

    It’s not my money. It’s not your money. It’s not other people’s money. It’s our money. Ours. We the people. That’s how it always works, and we shouldn’t let the far right get away with the argument that spending money on liberal priorities is theft while spending it on conservative priorities isn’t.

  • Anonymous

    This, a thousand times this. My political priorities have remained the same over the last five years, as I’ve moved from unemployed to underemployed to fully employed. I was fortunate enough while unemployed to have a strong familial safety net (and no kids), but not everyone is that lucky and there is absolutely no reason why wanting to provide that and funding advanced infrastructure is somehow terrible while using that money to bomb brown kids a hemisphere away is legitimate.

    The original poster’s umbrage disgusts me to no end.

    Also, I was fortunate enough to make a good salary this last year (working two jobs at once for a while certainly helped). Even before doing my taxes, my withholdings worked out to roughly 24% between state and federal taxes. If the last two years are any indication, I’ll get a decently sized refund that will knock that percentage down several points. This is what the tea party is complaining about? ~20% on a good income (even without deductions for kids, mortgage,* etc.) and ~14% for someone like Romney? No wonder our country’s infrastructure is falling apart and my girlfriend can’t get a degree because the last two classes she needs are full every semester and have been for the last two years.

    *Screw the mortgage deduction.

  • Baeraad

     Since I am at work and don’t have time to write the long, searing reply that a certain bonehead deserves – thank you for stating my point so calmly and succinctly. :)

    And as for the bonehead in question: may you be stricken with a painful, debilitating medical condition that your insurance company weasels out of paying for the treatment of, and thereafter surrounded by smirking assholes talking piously about how terrible it would be for anyone to be *forced* to give a shit about your suffering. That is all.

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    It’s not my money. It’s not your money. It’s not other people’s money. It’s our money. Ours. We the people. That’s how it always works, and we shouldn’t let the far right get away with the argument that spending money on liberal priorities is theft while spending it on conservative priorities isn’t.

    Plus there’s all the saints (especially but not exclusively in the early centuries of Christianity) who held that any money or goods you have beyond that required to sustain your basic needs is not yours. It belongs to the poor, and by keeping it to yourself you are a thief.

    According to this view, if you were to look at the parable of the Good Samaritan in economic terms you would see that the Samaritan wasn’t donating money to the robbery victim cos he was a swell guy. He was giving the victim back what he rightfully owned.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    It’s not my money. It’s not your money. It’s not other people’s money. It’s our money. Ours.
    We the people. That’s how it always works, and we shouldn’t let the far
    right get away with the argument that spending money on liberal
    priorities is theft while spending it on conservative priorities isn’t.

    The idea that “we” are an “us” is utterly alien to libertarian thinking, and utterly horrifying to conservative thinking.

    And _that_ is why Occupy movements scare them so much.

  • Anonymous

    Well, that’s *certain* to promote rational and reasoned discourse and debate!

  • http://www.oliviareviews.com/ PepperjackCandy

    Fortunately, the injured man in the Good Samaritan didn’t need any kind of specialized care. 

    If he had, which would be the more efficient way to go about it? 

    For the Samaritan to have paid ahead of time through, say, sales taxes, and call 911 (or the 1st century equivalent) and have paramedics (or the 1st century equivalent) come to the site and do the work they needed to do without up-front payment; or

    For the Samaritan to have to go through the yellow pages (or the 1st century equivalent) for a private paramedic service (or the 1st century equivalent) and hope that the bill isn’t more than he has in his checking account (or the 1st century equivalent)?

    I know which one I would choose.

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    Notice, if you please, that the Good Samaritan used his own personal resources to succor the stranger, his less-fortunate neighbor. Unlike some progressives would have it, he did not seek or use OPM to care for the stranger. (OPM: sounds like opium, is equally addicting, stands for other people’s money.) Had Jesus done that, he would have used the forceof government to take money from some of his neighbors to succor the stranger, making him a co-conspirator in theft and making the stranger dependent on the government dole instead of God.

    Oh piss off.

  • Anonymous

    Notice, if you please, that the Good Samaritan used his own personal resources to succor the stranger, his less-fortunate neighbor. Unlike some progressives would have it, he did not seek or use OPM to care for the stranger. (OPM: sounds like opium, is equally addicting, stands for other people’s money.)

    What?  Yes, he did.  Says right there, he got the innkeeper to chip in too.  He promised to pay the guy back later, but presumably his OPM addiction prevented that, poor bastard. The innkeeper got gypped and the Samaritan and the injured guy ended up celebrating the world’s first Medicare fraud.

  • Emcee, cubed

    So completely off-topic, but there isn’t really an active thread that this applies to right now. And I’d like to share my happiness. 20 years ago today, long before anyone even thought it might one day be legal anywhere in the US, my husband and I had our wedding at our church, with our minister presiding. It was witnessed by friends and family that we both love dearly. Today, we are still together, still very much in love, and still remember that day with great joy.

    And on a more general note, marriage equality (or as I like to call it, equality) passed the WA state Senate! This was considered the major hurdle for the legislation, with only the minimum of 25 votes declared in favor. 3 undeclareds did vote for passage as well. It now goes to the House, where it is almost guaranteed to pass, and the Governor has said she will sign it into law. It is likely it will go to a referendum, which will be a harder fight, but as BTB says, for now, we celebrate! WOOHOO!

  • FangsFirst

     Speaking with the heart of one who has newfound understanding for what that kind of commitment means (and takes!): Congratulations to you both! May you have many more years of happiness together.

    There may not be an active thread this applies to, but I’d say happiness is welcome at all times! :)

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Speaking of, there was a same-sex marriage in Alvin Toffler’s Future Shock video. (about 7 minutes in-ish) Note the year it was made. :P

  • Lori

    Happy Anniversary to you and your husband, Emcee, cubed. May you have many more happy years together and may the state soon allow the law to recognize the truth of your family. 

  • Daughter

    Emcee, congratulations to you and your husband!

  • Anonymous

    Congratulations to you and your husband, Emcee! ^_^

  • Anonymous

    Thank you for sharing your happiness, the world can always use some more. Congratulations to you both.

  • http://www.oliviareviews.com/ PepperjackCandy

     Happy Anniversary, Emcee and Mr. Emcee!

  • Anonymous

    There are prayers attributed to St. Brigid?

    Well, I suppose if one is going to go from fire goddess to Christian nun, one has to pray something.

  • Don Gisselbeck

    So how much money would Mr. Romney have without the ebil gummint? For that matter how long would he last with an unrestrained mob of workers whose jobs he destroyed?

  • patter

    Jesus’ General and his “Republican Jesus” are always worth a trip, too. 

    Stupid Schmucks Saying Stupid Things ought to have to feed their family on only food stamps for a year.  Wouldn’t cure ’em, likely, but couldn’t hurt.

  • Anonymous

    “And those who tend to be most enthusiastic about it tend also to be those most opposed to Jesus. The National Prayer Breakfast is a celebration of power and a celebration of the powerful.”

    Continuing yesterday’s Vonnegut quote-off:

    For some reason, the most vocal Christians among us never mention the Beatitudes. But, often with tears in their eyes, they demand that the Ten Commandments be posted in public buildings….I haven’t heard one of them demand that the Sermon on the Mount, the Beatitudes, be posted anywhere.”Blessed are the merciful” in a courtroom? “Blessed are the peacemakers” in the Pentagon? Give me a break!

  • Izzy

    That actually makes me like ICP slightly more than I did. By which I mean “hate them slightly less”. 

  • http://www.nightphoenix.com Amaranth

    It’s almost as though when OPM is put to good use in a community, everyone comes out ahead, instead of just the rich people. And we can’t have that, can we?

  • Anonymous

    You know, I like the idea of “small non-intrusive government.”  But I like the idea of clean water, clean air, safe food and medicine, a competent police force, a responsive firefighting force, a social safety net, and medical care for those who cannot afford it so they can live, just a *little* bit more.

  • Guest-again

    ‘It is opposed to Jesus.’
    Strange – a lot of the people opposed to Romney already believe that – of course, they tend to be anti-Mormon bigots (and man, are there a lot more of them than I had thought in the U.S.), but out host is definitely not one of them.

    Nonetheless, the anti-Mormon undertone about their ‘unacceptable’ religious beliefs would a fascinating topic to explore. Some people even believe it has something to do with Beck’s amazing duck dive from Fox’s public view – has any polarizing political-media figure disappeared so quickly (without going to jail or being involved in a massive scandal – a certain former head of the IMF comes to mind in a French context, for example) in recent memory?

  • http://profiles.google.com/vlowe7294 Vaughn Lowe

    There are references to Judas being the “one who held the money bag” i.e. the group treasurer.  So they had funds of some kind.  I’d imagine that they got support from those they healed and such.  

  • Twig

    “Lend us a fiver, Judy?”
    “Stop calling me that!”

    /izzard

  • Twig

    Also, come on Romney, the bare minimum to keep people from starving to death in the streets isn’t a win.  It isn’t a “well, we’ve got that covered!,” it’s a first step.  A very very tiny first step.

    This isn’t a presidential nominee race, it’s Gingrich and Romney neck-and-neck in the ‘who can be a bigger parody of themselves’ contest.

  • Brandi

    I think Alabama State Senator Shadrack McGill rates a mention here.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/02/01/shadrack-mcgill-alabama-teacher-pay-bible_n_1247765.html

  • Apocalypse Review

    Oh god, not this ~selfless calling~ BS politicians love hauling out when its anything but their own wallets* getting stuffed with cash.

    —-

    * or the wallets of their favored hangers-on.

  • joel hanes

    Have you seen the little piggies

    Crawling in the dirt

    And for all the little piggies

    Life is getting worse

    Always having dirt to play around in.

    Have you seen the bigger piggies

    In their starched white shirts

    You will find the bigger piggies

    Stirring up the dirt

    Always have clean shirts to play around in.

    In their sties with all their backing

    They don’t care what goes on around

    In their eyes there’s something lacking

    What they need’s a damn good whacking.

    Everywhere there’s lots of piggies

    Living piggy lives

    You can see them out for dinner

    With their piggy wives

    Clutching forks and knives to eat their bacon.

  • Dariayarrow

    Wow, Fred you hit the nail on the head with this! Romney’s statement is so indicative of that Antichrist mindset. What’s interesting is that in the Book of Mormon, Moroni 7 gives the clearest statement I’ve ever seen about how to find your path to God in this confusing world. To paraphrase, it states that ANYTHING that enhances your understanding of Christ and draws you to Jesus Christ is of God; and conversely, ANYTHING that draws you away from a greater understanding of Christ is of the devil.
    “16 For behold, the aSpirit of Christ is given to every bman, that he may cknow good from evil; wherefore, I show unto you the way to judge; for every thing which inviteth to do good, and to persuade to believe in Christ, is sent forth by the power and gift of Christ; wherefore ye may know with a perfect knowledge it is of God.
    17 But whatsoever thing persuadeth men to do aevil, and believe not in Christ, and deny him, and serve not God, then ye may know with a perfect knowledge it is of the devil; for after this manner doth the devil work, for he persuadeth no man to do good, no, not one; neither do his angels; neither do they who subject themselves unto him.
    18 And now, my brethren, seeing that ye know the alight by which ye may judge, which light is the light of Christ, see that ye do not judge wrongfully; for with that same bjudgment which ye judge ye shall also be judged.
    19 Wherefore, I beseech of you, brethren, that ye should search diligently in the alight of Christ that ye may know good from evil; and if ye will lay hold upon every good thing, and condemn it not, ye certainly will be a bchild of Christ.”
    http://www.lds.org/scriptures/bofm/moro/7?lang=eng
    Thanks again Fred for your amazing insight. I love your blog!

  • Amaryllis

    Congratulations to Emcee and husband!

    “other people’s money” …. ohhh

    I’ve clearly been a bureaucrat for too long: I was skimming this thread, behind as usual, wondering why people were getting so excited about the Office of Personnel Management.