• The Cheese Shop Sketch is a classic bit of bleakly funny absurdity from Monty Python. But it’s got nothing on Gov. Scott Walker’s proposed Rules to Micromanage Poor People’s Cheese Consumption in, of all places, Wisconsin.
• “Bible prophecy scholar” and mega-church pastor John Hagee has brewed up some lucrative moonshine with his “Blood Moons” theory — even though he apparently doesn’t understand how eclipses work:
“These blood moons are visible here but not in Israel,” Ross stated at one point, much to Hagee’s surprise. Explaining that “a total lunar eclipse basically is visible to about one-third to one-half the earth,” Ross asked why, if these blood moons are so significant to Israel, they are visible in America but not in Israel.
Hagee clearly was not aware of this fact, as all he could come up with as a response was that “I don’t have an answer for why Israel can’t see it.”
But that isn’t stopping Hagee from doubling-down on this stuff, predicting a global economic crisis on or just after the next eclipse in September.
Here’s a prediction of my own: After this very specific prophecy fails to come true at the very specific time Hagee prophesies, he and his followers will simply move on to the next prophetic agenda, unbothered and unchastened by yet another documented failure and falsehood.
• “Even critics of Intelligent Falling admit that Einstein’s ideas about gravity are mathematically irreconcilable with quantum mechanics. This fact, Intelligent Falling proponents say, proves that gravity is a theory in crisis.”
• James McGrath on “KJV-Onlyism.”
This wacky “doctrine” is one of the things that separates American fundamentalists from their don’t-call-us-fundamentalist white evangelical counterparts. But it’s not really that much of a separation. KJV-onlyism carries the turtles-all-the-way-down logic of inerrancy a few levels further into absurdity, but it’s a response to the same fears and insecurity. Once you decide that your “salvation” is based on affirmation of correct doctrinal truth, you require unambiguous, certain access to that correct doctrinal truth — and thus you require an “inerrant” Bible that you can read inerrantly, in English.
KJV-onlyism also tends to be more prevalent among the same kind of white Christian fundies who are most drawn to a Bartonesque “Christian nation” myth. I’m still trying to think through that link, but I suspect it has something to do with the fact that the Authorized Version was authorized by King James — an actual, political king. That seems bound to get tangled up with a pro-empire hermeneutic, somehow, although which way cause-and-effect flows I’m not sure.
(Related: “When the faithful become militant, the crown can lose control,” Steven Attewell on church and state in Westeros and the Holy Roman Empire.)
• I invite veteran religious-right culture-warrior Robert Knight to suggest some possible non-racist explanation for his recent comments on “illegal aliens who are easily bribed with federal welfare,” but I won’t hold my breath waiting for him to offer one.
• Heard this one from local hero Amos Lee over the weekend and it’s been kicking around in my head ever since: