Love dares you to care for the people on the edge

Happy birthday, Freddie Mercury.

“If God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you — you of little faith?”

“For the most part, it seems that they eat, crawl and mate on your face without harmful effects.”

“The money spigot was now wide open. Abramoff was being paid millions as a lobbyist. Reed was being paid millions to dupe his fellow Christians. And Norquist was feeding cash to his political operation by acting as their front. The one-time college Republicans had turned the conservative revolution into a racket.”

“Of course, Reed didn’t tell those Christians he was being paid to help keep running sweatshops that exploited women. Instead, he told them the reforms were a trick orchestrated by the left and organized labor. Limits on Chinese workers would keep them from being ‘exposed to the teachings of Jesus Christ.'”

The full force of the implied argument is this: One cannot be pro-choice and a born again Christian.”

The tattered remnants of the John Birch Society are all over this stuff, which would be irrelevant were it not for the fact that Tim LaHaye, author of bestselling ‘Left Behind’ series, is a proud JBS stalwart.”

“The article, for lack of a better word, concludes that an American military coup may be necessary.”

“Even as confirmation bias led conservative evangelicals to accept Barton’s work uncritically, they turned around and attributed mainstream scholars’ criticism of Barton’s work to, you guessed it, confirmation bias.”

The Church has remained 200 years behind the times. Why has it not been shaken up?”

“In evangelical circles we have created an elaborate system of morality that only concerns our souls, so when we think about sex we create paradigms in which sexual purity means keeping your heart pure by only having sex with the person of the opposite gender to whom you’re married.”

We are all on foreign soil.”

“These things were put in place because when you leave it up to industrialists and share holders to treat their workers with dignity and respect and to pay them a living wage for their hard work, you get indentured servitude.” (via)

What if the Fed paid 5-percent interest on IRA accounts?

“You people are redder than Billy Bragg wearing a Che shirt on a May Day Parade float and singing The Internationale.”

“If, after I depart this vale, you ever remember me and have thought to please my ghost, forgive some sinner, and wink your eye at some homely girl.”

Congratulations are in order. Cool.

Church Sign Epic Fails, Vol. XXIX

"It's less than a month to Chinese New Year's. The restaurants here in Malaysia should ..."

I want to love but it ..."
"Oh yeah. Pharyngula broke very publicly with other parts of movement atheism, and if there's ..."

"When isn't he lying?"

I want to love but it ..."
"and even more good news, China is getting in on the act too."


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  • Lori

    Every time I see someone working themselves up with the fantasy of the US military staging a coup to overthrow the president I just want to smack them. First of all, that is not going to happen. Second, and more important, if it did happen it would be a very, very bad thing. It would mean that our country had totally failed. That’s not something a “patriot” drams about with fondness you horrible, horrible fuckwit. 

    W may or may not have been the worst president we’ve ever had, but he was without question the worst president we’ve had in my lifetime (by a wide margin). I disagreed with him about almost everything he did and I still never dreamed about the military rising up and staging a coup. Because I love my home more than I loath George Bush and because for all my many faults I’m not actually a totally horrible person. What is wrong with these people?

  • Carstonio

    I recommend the novel and movie Seven Days in May. Although this story doesn’t explore what a military dictatorship would be like, it does offer a plausible scenario for how such a coup would come about. It even foresees the rise of Limbaugh and Beck and their fellow demagogues.

    So frustrating that Strachan doesn’t recognize that opposing the forcing
    of women to carry pregnancies to term does NOT equate to deeming
    abortion to be inherently a good thing.

  • jclor

    The militiaman’s fantasy of the armed uprising, “tree of Liberty, blood of patriots” nonsense flies in the face of the Founders’ intentions when creating this country.  They knew their history and saw what inevitably happened to monarchies; they wanted to create a system of government that didn’t need to be overthrown because it could be revolutionized from within.  It’s why the Civil War was, among other things, a constitutional crisis—a trial by fire of this system that supposedly broke the cycle of armed revolution.

    So, basically, Lori’s point: if the U.S. fell into internecine conflict, it would be a failure of the nation at a fundamental level.

    When you see this sort of rhetoric from semi-mainstream partisan mouthpieces such as The Daily Caller, it just points to their lack of anything substantive behind their arguments (as well as their lack of understanding of history and how the U.S. government works).

  • AnonymousSam

    Not to mention that if we ever had another civil war, I highly doubt it would end as well as the last one did. I don’t think there would be any re-merging of the states. I think the best case scenario would be the forming of two separate countries… and an abysmally high body count.

    Which is, sadly, probably exactly what these private militias really want. How many of them worship the Confederacy, after all?

  • jclor

    Quite true.  Warfare at the time was a very limited affair compared to modern conflicts, and the economies and public infrastructures of the states then were less interconnected by an entire order of magnitude, at least.

    It is, however, amusing to consider what sort of “New Confederacy” the militiamen might end up with after they’ve jettisoned all the over-educated, highly productive urban populations from within their midst.  

    Wait—haven’t we seen this scenario play out already?  Somewhere in the area of, I don’t know—the Korean Peninsula?

  • PJ Evans

     Russia in the 1920s?

  • reynard61

    “Russia in the 1920s?”

    Try Cambodia in the ’70s (i.e. “The Killing Fields”) but with even *more* killing. (Gotta get that blood up to the height of a horse’s bridle, ya know! The Bible says so!)

  • PJ Evans

     I have, on at least one occasion, described the US as a country that has institutionalized revolution: every four years, we get to decide if we want to change our government and its direction. And we’ve been doing this for more than 200 years!

  • AnonymousSam

    Assassination is far more practical anyway, but still not a good idea. It doesn’t solve anything. It presumes that the president–and the president alone–has supreme authority over all going-ons in the United States. That’s just not the case. As Obama has demonstrated thoroughly in the last four years, the president only has as much power as he is extended by mutual cooperation of Congress.

  • Tricksterson

    I never thought about overthrowing Bush but I did and do fantasize about breaking up the country on red/blue/purple grounds.  I figure New England, New York, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware and New Jersey could either join Cananda (if they’d have us) or form the Northeastern Republic,  The Great Lakes States plus Minnesota and Iowa but minus Indiana (which is consistently red) being mostly purple would be the Great Lakes Republic.  The West Coast down to about halfway between San Francisco and Los Angeles would do the same as the northeast, either join Canada or form their own Nation, maybe Nevada too or it could be a buffer state.  SoCal and New Mexico would rejoin Mexico and Florida would go independent or maybe just Dade County while the rest of Florida would join the remainder of the country as the Christian States of America.

  • Twig
  • Tricksterson

    That was where I got the basic idea, then elaborated.

  • Guest

    Define “consistently” – it was close, but Indiana did go for Obama in 2008. I know plenty of liberals here, and I know people all over Michigan (it has people in places other than Detroit and Flint!) who’d rather live in your Christian States of America than anywhere else.

  • PJ Evans

     There are a lot of people in California who would go for that, too. We have a three-way division, politically, but LA is closer to SF in politics than most people outside the state realize.

  • Carstonio

    Reminds me of Frank Miller’s Give Me Liberty. Thing is, I don’t want the reactionary parts of the US to break away, because they would likely become theocratic oligarchies. I can very easily imagine a new Underground Railroad helping women escape to freedom. Better to push for nationwide equality.

  • jclor

    We in the Pacific Northwest occasionally joke about the Republic of Cascadia, which would incorporate Washington, Oregon, and Northern California.  Plentiful beer, legal pot, mandatory recycling and composting, all green energy, and a free bicycle for every citizen.

  • Invisible Neutrino

    There are people in British Columbia who also advocate the “Cascadia” concept. Roughly the borders would probably begin at the existing Yukon boundary, follow the Rocky Mountains, and then connect to Washington State.

    It works out nicely since the populations of BC, WA, OR and NorCal are all about the same. :)

  • FearlessSon

    We in the Pacific Northwest occasionally joke about the Republic of Cascadia, which would incorporate Washington, Oregon, and Northern California.  Plentiful beer, legal pot, mandatory recycling and composting, all green energy, and a free bicycle for every citizen.

    I was just going to say…

    Cascadia is more of a thought experiment than a genuine push for secession though.  I imagine that a Cascadian city would look like this.

  • Tricksterson

    Nifty, the name Eden and the ecofriendliness reminds me of the Edenites from a series by Peter Hamilton

  • The_L1985

     I would totally live in a country like that.  The only thing in that description that doesn’t grab me immediately is the pot, and that’s because I’m not into the stuff.

  • Tricksterson

    But do you have a problem with other  adults smoking it?  Subject say to the same restrictions as alchohol?

  • The_L1985

    Frankly, I could care less whether other people are smoking weed, as long as they don’t drive or operate machinery while intoxicated and they keep their kids away from secondhand smoke.

  • Tricksterson

    In other words, then you really wouldn’t have a problem with the Cascadian ethos.

  • AnonymousSam

    Sounds like my kind of country! Then again, I’m just happy to be able to see the Cascades from my doorstep (well, almost; I do have to find a spot where the trees aren’t in the way). I had been living in Michigan and happened to escape entirely by accident just before the new governor decided that he didn’t care much for the idea of people’s votes having any potential impact on his policies and outlawed democracy. ¬.¬

  • jclor

    As someone who narrowly made it out of Wisconsin before King Scottie I ascended to the throne, I feel your pain.  Though I enjoy looking at Mt. Hood and St. Helens from my neighborhood brewpub—if not my doorstep—it pains me to watch the long, slow decline of a beacon of Midwestern progressivity as it succumbs to the bigoted rage I always suspected festered right below the surface.

  • Steve

    Yes, Please, At least a healthy chunnk of Indiana would like to stay with the North, thank you.  That would include basically all of Indianapolis among other cities.  Feel free to plow under the surrounding ‘Lunatic Gun Nut Belt’ that surrounds them.  Although it does produce a lot of corn, soybeans, and young people desperate to escape.
    Don’t hate us ’cause we’re gerrymandered.
    We’ve got that covered.

  • Matt McIrvin

    “while the rest of Florida would join the remainder of the country as the Christian States of America.”

    Black Southerners would be screwed. Which is part of why I’ve never been keen on these schemes.

  • Tricksterson

    Enh, It’s not something I consider seriously doable, just a thought exercise

  • PepperjackCandy

    Congratulations, Deird!

    I actually have been toying with a triumvirate in which the country is divided into three north-to-south regions, sort of along the lines of the snow, corn, and Bible belts.  Each region would have its own representative in the triumvirate, and the various US congresspeople would meet for part of the year in DC, when it would consider the laws for the entire country, and for part of the year in its own region, when it would consider laws for just that area. There may or may not be one President who has authority over the three triumviri.

    I also never thought about overthrowing Bush.  However, when my mom died less than a year after Katrina, and traveling to her funeral necessitated us driving along I-10 through New Orleans (we drove east at night, and only saw one or two lights — it might was well have been cornfields out there, rather than apartment buildings), I did kind of wish that my mom would haunt him.  Just for a night or two.

  • The_L1985

     Just pointing out that the easternmost chunk of Broward is about as awesome as Dade and would probably go independent with it.

  • Tricksterson

    I bow to your greater knowledge of the area.

  • Ross

     Well, according to Chuck Norris, if Obama is reelected, it will cause, this is an actual quote, “a thousand years of darkness”.

  • Lori

    Chuck Norris needs to stop believing his own press. He is not actually all that and “stuff Chuck doesn’t like” =/= ” the end of civilization”. Idiot.

  • Michael Pullmann

    Congratulations, Deird!

  • nemryn

    Only 200? I’m impressed!

  • Invisible Neutrino

    Congratulations are in order. Cool.

    Oh wow! I didn’t click this before! YAY for Deird :) o/

    Now to the military.

    I had heard that the US military had rumblings of a possible coup attempt against Dubya because of his utterly inept handling of the Iraq and Afghanistan war fronts.

    But even given that, I didn’t see it as likely, considering he was giving the more bellicose military officers everything they wanted – a (not so) tidy little war, and lots of money thrown around too.

  • Tricksterson

    What happened to Tucker Carlson?  he used to be one of the saner peope on the right.  I’m really starting to wonder if there’s some kind of pod invasion going on among Republicans.

    And I think Rand Paul has his Weathermen confused.

  • Coleslaw

    Happy dance for Deird!

  • VMink

    Because military coups worked so well for Syria….

  • LoneWolf343

    “The full force of the implied argument is this: One cannot be pro-choice and a born again Christian.”

    Implied? I saw a bumper sticker that said that exactly the other day, except for “Christian” being changed to “Catholic.” 

  • Deird

    Heh. I wondered why I was suddenly getting congrats from random Slacktivites. Thanks, Fred! (And thanks everyone else, too.)

  • Kiba

    Congrats on the job! 

  • christopher_young

    Yay, Deird!

  • SisterCoyote

    Huzzah! Congratulations, Deird!

  • Albanaeon

    So SSA gets 174,000 bullets.  Well, assuming that the SSA officers and illegal immigrants are less well trained than the US military, they might, just might, injure one other person.

    If it takes 250,000 bullets (or more) to get one insurgent for our top military personnel, what do they think hastily armed immigrants are going to do?

    BTW Congrats Deird!

  • Lori

    We’ve talked about this before, but it still always strikes me as stunning A) how much time the best trained of the US military spend on the gun range (a helluva lot) and B) how little clue gun nuts have about this (none).

  • PJ Evans

     Mostly it’s for range firing, but they do have people who go out in the field and apparently risk being shot at.

  • Albanaeon

    But that’s just it.  You can’t just hand someone a gun and expect them to become Rambo.  You’ve gotta get them trained in their weapon, which takes a lot of bullets, you’ve also got to train them to be able to use their weapon on other people (which from my understanding is harder than you would expect) which takes even more bullets, and then you’ve got to keep them trained, which takes a  never ending stream of bullets, and finally if you get to the actual firefight where a lot bullets go into not people despite all the aforementioned stuff.

    Which is why I saw that number and LOL’d.  It wouldn’t be enough for a small unit for a few months let alone a takeover of America.

  • The_insane_protagonist

    If the US split up I’d hate to see what would happen here on Guam… *shudder*
    Who gets responsibility for the territories in that scenario?

  • EllieMurasaki

    If the US split up I’d hate to see what would happen here on Guam… *shudder*
    Who gets responsibility for the territories in that scenario?

    I suspect that in the chaos all the territories could (individually or collectively) declare independence and nobody would notice or care until it was too late to stop you.

  • Tricksterson

    The Pacific territories would probably go to the newly independent nation of hawaii (apologies to both hawaii and Alaska for ignoring them).  Puerto Rico would either go independent or join up with South Florida and take the American Virgin Islands with them.

  • The_insane_protagonist

    Hmm, it almost seems more likely that Guam + CNMI might become part of Micronesia instead… But any way you look at it Guam would be in deep trouble because it relies so heavily on federal funds (something like 1/3 of the population is on public assistance). One of the main things about Guam is the big military bases here… I wonder what happens to the personnel stationed there? Do they go back to the mainland and choose which country to join? Do they stay on Guam? The implications are almost too awful to contemplate!

  • Tricksterson

    Or maybe they pull a Last Resort

  • Tomas

    Re: the mites on your face.  There is a must-read graphic novel, called The Sandwalk Adventures, about a dialogue between Charles Darwin and a follicle mite living in his eyebrow.  It’s written and drawn by biology professor Jay Hosler.  Look it up.