A New Barton – Beck Lovefest

A New Barton – Beck Lovefest April 26, 2012

Glenn Beck had David Barton on his show last week and Beck declared that “if we save the country, when we save the country, a lot of the credit in the afterlife is going to go to you.” Barton says God has put all those historical documents that he lies about in his hands.

httpv://youtu.be/I0PKd-jW0-E

Here’s Christian historian John Fea’s reaction:

I don’t even know where to begin with this video. Instead I will just defer to folks like Warren Throckmorton and Michael Coulter. Maybe Jon Rowe and Chris Rodda will have something to say about it as well.

Barton’s book is currently ranked #31 at Amazon. It is really sad that the American past is being manipulated for political propaganda in this way. I say this as an historian and an evangelical Christian.

I’d like to see Fea get together with Gregg Frazer and maybe other reasonable Christian historians and launch a major effort to get Christians to stop listening to Barton’s lies. They’d be harder to dismiss than Chris and me.

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  • bkhawkeye

    I know I will sound very naive, but I don’t care, I really enjoy reading your blog and you seem to be very fair in your criticism of both the GOP and Democrats as far as when they truly deserve it. What is it with politicians on the right swearing fealty to people like Barton, Norquist, Fischer, et al (I would also include think tanks like Heritage and orgs like ALEC)? Is the answer simply money and power? Do politicians on the left also do this? To what extent?

    I just get the feeling that no GOP officials actually formulate their own policies and are probably asking these guys what to do, but this has to be somewhat common on the other side of the aisle as well. Right?

  • Brownian

    I’d like to see Fea get together with Gregg Frazer and maybe other reasonable Christian historians and launch a major effort to get Christians to stop listening to Barton’s lies. They’d be harder to dismiss than Chris and me.

    At the least, I’m glad to see others on their team, so to speak, denounce this sort of ahistoric* religious pandering.

    *Recently ahistoric? Arecent historic? Arecent ahistoric? I feel like I need to differentiate from the normal kind of ahistory that most, if not all religions are guilty of.

  • dustnite

    @bhawkeye:

    Just to give you an idea why Barton is a problem…

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/05/us/politics/05barton.html

    One would hope that when someone openly lies about history and anyone with Google can figure it out, that person would be called out on his BS. Unfortunately, the US is full of retards apparently..

  • bkhawkeye

    @dustnite:

    Thanks! I am going to read that link you posted.

    I am definitely aware of the problem he represents. I am also going to purchase Chris Rodda’s book. I don’t want to look it up, but I suspect that if we were to measure the amount of advanced degrees held by both Dems and Repubs, you would not see too much disparity between how “well-endowed” both sides are (without controlling for where these people actually went to school, of course). I just can’t wrap my brain around why anyone with a decent education would put any stock in Barton’s obvious lies other than it helps them gain more clout, money, and eventually power with ignorant members of their voter base. In other words, do they seriously believe this stuff?

  • cjtotalbro

    Part of why the “Liberal Media(!!!!!11!)” myth is so useful in terms of keeping the rubes in line on the right is that it allows any criticism of Barton – no matter its veracity – to be dismissed out of hand. Most Bartonites won’t believe that Barton is a liar because they don’t want to. I don’t think it would really matter to most of them if the criticisms came from other Christians because it seems like most of this is petty tribalism. Anyone critical is clearly an enemy of the tribe and isnt worth listening to.

    That said, I really hope this 4th rate Mr.Rogers doppelganger gets hit by a bus – a bus full of truth- or an actual bus, I have no preference.

  • frankniddy

    @bkhawkeye

    While I don’t doubt that some of the talking heads at the top believe their own shit, I would think most know what they’re saying and doing. They’re like drug dealers. The smart ones know not to get high on their own supply, so to speak. Actually, that comparison might be insulting to drug dealers, come to think of it. I’d also like to second what cjtotalbro said.

  • I’d like to see Fea get together with Gregg Frazer and maybe other reasonable Christian historians and launch a major effort to get Christians to stop listening to Barton’s lies.”

    All they have to do is invent a time machine, go back in time, write something down and wait for Barton to find it and quotemine them.

    “They’d be harder to dismiss than Chris and me.”

    Somewhere just under half of Americans are YEC. While not specifically the subject of this page, this indicates that they’re pretty good at dismissing (or ignoring) uncomfortable facts, no matter who seems to be providing them.

    But I’m a glass half full kind of guy, so I’m hopeful that some low hanging fruit can be plucked from the tree.

    bkhawkeye “I just can’t wrap my brain around why anyone with a decent education would put any stock in Barton’s obvious lies other than it helps them gain more clout, money, and eventually power with ignorant members of their voter base. In other words, do they seriously believe this stuff?”

    The smart ones who push his stuff are cynical manipulators, and do so because it profits them, with fame, money, power (or proximity to power or the mere feeling of power).

    The rest are true believers, and Barton’s stuff (among others) complements their feeling that America is special, and from that they get their place in the universe. One where they are special.

    Barton is telling people who really, really want presents that that Santa is real.

  • cjtotalbro

    Barton is popular because he gives people whose identity in life rests upon nothing more than being white, christian and american the feeling that these things alone are huge accomplishments and worth celebrating.

  • d cwilson

    They’re like drug dealers. The smart ones know not to get high on their own supply, so to speak.

    That reminds me of one of my favorite South Park episodes: Colorado legalizes medical marijuana, but outlaws KFC. Cartman then joins and eventually takes over, a local syndicate that smuggled KFC into the state. Unfortunately, he ends up eating all of his supply.

  • tfkreference

    It’s actually quite simple: “Don’t let the facts get in the way of your beliefs.”

  • dustnite

    I’m actually less disgusted by these two than the people who actually take them seriously. On top of that, you have the entire Republican party losing their collective shit as they run hellbent toward the extreme right of the political spectrum and these guys are just raking in the money as they take the rubes to the poor house.

    The fact that these two can have a career at being liars and demagogues makes me wonder why I didn’t join on the bandwagon to get my cash pie. Oh yeah…I have integrity. Damn pesky thing..