October 20, 2006
More Liberal Outreach Towards Christians
Iowahawk had a fall-down funny spoof of a letter from DNC Chairman to banjo-plucking, cross-burning Christian conservatives earlier this week that encompassed the disdain many far left liberals seem to have for religiously-oriented traditional values voters.
AFP decided today to join in the fun, with the slight difference being that they were attempting to provide not satire, but news:
The top US general defended the leadership of Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, saying it is inspired by God.
"He leads in a way that the good Lord tells him is best for our country," said Marine General Peter Pace, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
Rumsfeld is "a man whose patriotism focus, energy, drive, is exceeded by no one else I know ... quite simply, he works harder than anybody else in our building," Pace said at a ceremony at the Southern Command (Southcom) in Miami.
Rumsfeld has faced a storm of criticism and calls for his resignation, largely over his handling of the Iraq war.
As is typical of the left-leaning media, they seem amazed that leaders in these modern times pray for guidance from a power higher than themselves, and thought that detail was so newsworthy as to make it this story's lede. Other elements, such as Rumsfeld's controversial leadership style, and an apparent show of support at this ceremony from the military estalishment are far more newsworthy elements of the day's events to most people, but not so to AFP.
AFP seems to want to portray Rumsfeld's faith in God as an unpleasant aspect of his personality... perhaps another reason he should resign. I can only wonder what AFP must think about the 77% of Americans that also share his Christian faith. "Horror above horrors," they seem to be saying, "those people pray to Jesus."
Of course, I'm only speculating about what AFP appears to mean. I don't have to speculate, however, about the contempt for Christians dripping from the lips of liberal bloggers.
Cernig seems comfortable comparing Christians in the Bush Administration with al Qaeda terrorists:
Both the Bush administration and Al Qaida extremists like to claim God is on their side. One of those claims has to be wrong, and since it is a matter of faith which has no chance of objective proof this side of heaven I wish they would both just shut the f**k up about it.
Agnostic conservative/practicing liberal Andy Sullivan drips contempt in his Christianism Watch:
Surely the military leadership can be a place where expression of religious faith of one particular variety is restrained. Especially when we are at war with Islamic extremists, and when we must take every care to make sure our millitary [sic] actions aren't perceived abroad as religiously motivated. And surely military decisions should be made on an empirical, pragmatic basis, rather than on messages from Heaven.
The Agonist mockingly suggests that we should be building shrines to Rumsfeld:
High on Martin Luther's 1517 list of grievances was the concept that itermediaries[sic] between God and Man were necessary; that certain select individuals (a.k.a. "priests") relayed Divine will to the rest of us who were too stupid, spiritually inept or otherwise religiously-challenged. Conversely, the Great Unwashed could pray to saints to relay requests to The Big Guy.
After reading this I wonder if we should be building little shrines on our front lawns to Donald Rumsfeld.
Think Progress was wise enough to keep their contempt under wraps and simply chose to provide the lede, knowing that their commenters would do the damage. Sadly, a Christian Democrat was one of the early commenters, asking rather reasonably:
Rummy is on another level, and should be rightly criticized from all angles and positions, but at the end of the day, how can any sane person say they donít listen to god? I mean, each soul engages uniquely with God in contemplating divine mysteries according to its innate ability, and this engagement persists for all eternity, for the mysteries of the godhead are inexhaustible, as is the enthusiastic application of the soulsí intellectual ability.
He was quickly shouted down...
For all your flowery rhetoric, you are very obtuse.
We all know what the general said -that God is actually telling Rusmfeld what to do, not that he is merely seeking divine guidance.
Do you actually talk to your god?
How can any sane person say that god is talking to them?
There is, of course much more, both on the Think Progress thread (including another suggestion that Christians = terrorists) and elsewhere around the blogosphere.
I personally know very few people that are either moderates or conservatives (Democrat or Republican) who feel that a belief in God is a political proposition, and yet so may secular leftists are quick to equate the religious faith of our nationís leaders as a trait of one political party. From there, they seem to tie their hatred of the Bush Administration to a deep-seated and abiding contempt for Christians. Of course, many of them were likely contemptuous of Christians when Bill Clinton was in the White House as well, they just had fewer outlets (no blogosphere, no mySpace, etc) with which to voice their disgust.
Posted by Confederate Yankee at October 20, 2006 01:08 PM
What sad little lives the Leftards have. They say they are tolerant of everything, yet the mere thought of people following the Christian or Jewish faiths drives them insane. They cannot seem to fathom that people would not only Believe, but talk to their God for guidence, rathern then worshipping at the alter of Abortion On Demand.
Of course, we know part of their insanity towards religion is because W is religious.
Unless the religion in question is Islam, of course, then they get all tolerant.
Yes, you DO speculate. You do more than speculate, you pretend to know others thoughts and interpret them in ways that play to your own fantasies.
Wake up. This isn't about liberal or conservative, it's about saving our country from fascism, which is where it is currently headed.
Speculation and projection are EXACTLY what you are doing.
donna is unhinged, maybe with BDS?
To quote the commenters:
"Do you actually talk to your god?"
"How can any sane person say that god is actually talking to them?"
Speculation was not what he did, nor what I just did. We showed, with evidence, the "contempt for Christians" that liberals have.
The evidence is overwhelming. We don't need to
"know their thoughts". We know their deeds, their actions, their words. I have quoted directly from their own words.
I love to run car crashes where an athiest has 4,000 pounds of cold steel wrapped around them. I've never been around one that didn't ask 'God' to help them. Guess I can start telling them 'God' is on break but I have the Jaws of life in my hands.
Actually the truth is 100% of those trapped and in severe pain always ask 'God' to help them. They forget the left wing democratic atheist beliefs in a hurry.
Doesn't it bother anyone here that if the quote is true, and Rumsfeld is running his office according to advice from the Good Lord, that the Good Lord must be a hopeless screw-up?
If you want to say something insulting about God, it is hard to do better than say he is responsible for the level of (in)competence that Bush and Rumsfeld have displayed running this war after talking with him.
Actually for what has been done in so short a period on such a limited budget with so many constraints and so many oppponents both on and off the battlefield a miracle has been achieved but the angels are wearing camo and doing the 'hard work' the critics don't want them to do.
I do not care about a man's beliefs but about the effectiveness of the actions involved. And given that the US still has a peacetime budget, peacetime sized military, peacetime economy, peacetime damned near everything... what has been done is beyond all expectations that anyone would ever have accredited to the US in years and Administrations previous to this. We are judged by *actions* in this life.
Until the critics offer something *better* and a way to ensure the security of the Nation and fight its enemies more effectively, harping on this SecDef who has done the impossible repeatedly is pure sour grapes. And that makes very poor whine.
ajackson - Unfortunately for you, the Bush Administration made pretty explicit statements about what the Iraq war would cost us and what we would accomplish. Looking at their expectations, it turns out you are right ... the actual result is "beyond all expectations" as you put it, but not in the way you seem to think.
Donald Rumsfeld on the cost of the war - "Well, the Office of Management and Budget, has come up come up with a number that's something under $50 billion for the cost. How much of that would be the U.S. burden, and how much would be other countries, is an open question.Ē
Current cost is now over $300 billion, and those costs are not going to stop rising soon.
And need I remind of you Dep. Secretary of Defense Wolfowitz's prediction that we would not need hundreds of thousands of occuapation troops nor a long occupation because "There is no history of ethnic strife in Iraq." I think we can all agree that there is now.
I think these quotes establish the utter blindness to reality with which the Bush Administration went into this, but I can give you more if you want. So my question to you is that given how much worse things have gone than the Bush Administration predicted, do you still think it is a miracle how well they have gone? And if you do, then why did the Bush people tell you things would be so much better than this. Were they consciously lyng to you or just hopelessly out of touch with reality?
I do agree with you that the heroic work of our soldiers trying to win a war with a peacetime budget and manpower is worthy of our respect and gratitude. But you very carefully avoid pointing out why we have a peacetime budget and manpower. That is the result of conscious decision of Bush and Rumsfeld again. When Bush went before Congress after 9/11, he could have gotten anything he asked for. Did he ask for more troops and a bigger defense budget? No. So whose fault do you think it is that we don't have them now when we need them?
Shall I now mention what we are finding out about how Rumsfeld even forbad discussion of planning for the occupation in the run-up to the war?
So we are back to my original point. If their discussions with God really did play a part in these horrible predictions and policy choices, then God is a major league screw-up. Personally, I don't think God is nearly as bad as those people trying to associate him with the Bush Administration are making him out to be.
ajacksonian,I would ask you to read the 10/31/2005 report from the SIGIR (Special Inspector General in Iraq) and then tell me that Mr. Rumsfeld is doing a good job. As the SIGIR points out,the logistical problems that existed in the first Iraqi war were still present.The DoD failed to supply te warfighter with body armor and up armored Humvees.
There was no post war planning.In WWII,post-war planning for the occupation of Japan and germany began in 1942.For Iraq,Jay garner was quoted as saying,we were charged with a March event in February.
God help us all,because Rumsfeld is in charge.
TJM - I started to write a comment reminding you of all the errors that were made during WW II, the point being that war is by its very nature unpredictable and its execution always imperfect. But then I realized that you are not serious - it's probably better for you to go back to your decaf soy latte.
Better yet - post a reply "wicked blowing away this like totally fascist dude" and show it to the slightly overweight drama major you think might be giving you the eye it's sure to impress. Quick, Starbuck's is closing soon!
Current cost is now over $300 billion, and those costs are not going to stop rising soon.
It seems to me the $300B bought, in reality, a lot more than we ever expected. Syria marginalized, Kuwait and Saudi's having elections with women candidates, many arab countries opening up diplomatic/trade relations with Israel, etc.
Anyone who thinks those developments would have happened with Saddam still in power is a damn fool.
Who would pray to a god who kills innocent children? A sadist. An idiot. Or someone who hasn't done much thinking.
Despite coming from a religious family, I've been smart enough to figure out the likelihood of there being a (Christian or other) god is so close to zero, you're better off believing in Santa Claus.
Religion may have been beneficial at times, when a fear of divine retribution prevented people from raping and killing. Now that we know it's all made up, it's time to do the right thing for the sake of it being right, not because you're afraid to do wrong.
Purple Avenger - Don't forget to mention some other things that $300 billion and counting have bought.
1) An army so tied up in Iraq that the North Koreans and Iranians know they really have nothing to fear from us and so were/are free to continue with their nuclear weapons programs full blast. Given all our real enemies that are actually building nuclear bombs, it was quite the feat for Bush to pick out for attacking the one that was not, but he managed. Well done.
2) The best recruiting tool that any violent anti-American could hope for. Tell me, how many Iraqis now fighting against us do you think were anti-American terrorists before our invasion and how many are people perfectly willing to leave us alone if we left them alone, but now that we invaded their country are taking up arms against us? Al-Qaeda's basic propaganda point has always been that America makes up false reasons (like WMDs) to occupy the Arab world. It would be helpful in showing Arabs and Muslims this is not true if Bush would not do it.
3) A decline in America's world standing and body blows to our reputation for being the good guys. Let's see, we send our Secretary of State to the U.N. to give a presentation to justify a war, and now it turns out that everything he said from beginning to end was wrong. I know, Bush and his people do not consciously lie, they just say things that are not true out of incompetence. How comforting. We can also put into the scorecard that we are now an official pro-torture country. And yet despite all this, somehow other countries do not respect us like they used to. Imagine that.
4) Well, these are all bad side effects, but it was worth it to build that working democracy in Iraq. Oh wait, we don't have an effective democracy in Iraq. We have a goverment dependent on Shiite militias that effectively control much of the country on their way to establishing a semi-theocracy that is also a semi-ally of their Shiite friends in Iran. Sounds like money well spent to me.
5) Even if we ignore the decapitated Iraqis found in Baghdad parking lots every day now, there are still the thousands of Americans already dead with more every week.
And all this for a mere $300 billion, rapidly growing to $400 billion, and with no end in sight. As you say, we have "bought a lot more than we ever expected." And by the way, can you list the "many Arab countries opening up diplomatic/trade relations with Isreal"?
Got a quote on my site that goes somethign like "Dear God, why didn't you help the students at columbine, ..." (it goes on to list about 10-15 other schools where kids were shot) and God says "Dear student, I would have helped, but I'm not allowed in schools anymore"
Remember folks, those who reject God now will be gnashing their teeth in agony and railing against God in iternity. Yeah, their blatant hatred against Christians is hard to take, but Christ did say that we'd be hated- more and more so as the end approaches. It maddens me to see the angry vitriolic rhetoric comming from the left, but I have to stop and remind myself that this earth is as close to heaven as they will ever get & their future eternity will be non stop torment- not that I want that for them, but it will be their choice unfortunately. Black hearts spew black venom.
Counterfactual - So, you're saying the religious fanatics would turn against their leaders if we stopped fighting back? How did you reach that conclusion?
Anonymous for now - Ok, you got me. I have no idea from which part of my post you get your belief that I said "religious fanatics would turn against their leaders if we stopped fighting back?" The only parts of my post that even could be miscontrued as saying this are:
1) That I pointed out many people now fighting us in Iraq were not trying to kill Americans before our invasion, but now that we are occupying their country, they are. Thus we have boosted the number of our enemies.
2) That much of Iraq is now controlled by Shiite militia and that is not going to change since the Iraqi government depends on them for support to stay in power, and that many of these militia are imposing Islamic fundamentalism and are friendly to Iran.
You will have to explain a little better what you are talking about if you really want me to give a serious answer to your question.
By the way, interesting phrase you used there in saying we are "fighting back". You do realize that Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11 (It was an Afghanistan operation staffed mostly by Saudis), so our invading Iraq was not "fighting back" against Al-Qaeda and its supporters. The President himself even admits this is true on odd numbered days. In fact, we took resources away from where we actually were fighting back in Afghanistan to instead launch this invasion of a country that had not attacked us. I am old enough to remember when we (the U.S.) sort of had the idea it was wrong to attack other countries that had not attacked us first. I guess you hold to the more modern idea that not only do we get to invade any country we want to just because our President doesn't like it, but we get to say we are "fighting back" when we do so.
counterfactual- Iraq had nothign to do with hitting us, huh? Wow, have I got news for you- They absolutely did sponser and fund and encourage terrorism against us- a little research will quickly prove that there was a direct link- I've got a huge list of confessed terrorists and intel proving it- I'll be posting it on my site in a few days- meanwhile- newsbusters.org has compiled evidence- here's a short list: http://newsbusters.org/node/7335
I forgot to mention- I've also got a long list of Democrats who vehemently stated that Saddam must go because of the attrocities that he was committing against his fellow citizens- We didn't 'invade just because we wanted to' that is a deceitful thing to accuse the government of- We went into Iraq for several reasons- the most important was to stop one of the worst genocides in history which was reason enough- never mind the fact that Saddam was actively funding attacks against us and other nations- ALL human rights violations and sanction violations which he threw i nthe worlds face for over 12 years- no counter- it wasn't 'just because we wanted to'- far far from it.
Jeez, look at the liberal deflections. As usual, they go to their BDS crap.
Guys, if you want to start accusing someone of spreading leftist lies that President Bush invaded Iraq even though it had no connection to 9/11, I think you might want to take a look at this first. From President Bush's press conference on August 21, 2006.
THE PRESIDENT: "What did Iraq have to do with what?"
Q: "The attack on the World Trade Center?"
THE PRESIDENT: "Nothing, except for it's part of -- and nobody has ever suggested in this administration that Saddam Hussein ordered the attack. Iraq was a -- the lesson of September the 11th is, take threats before they fully materialize, Ken. Nobody has ever suggested that the attacks of September the 11th were ordered by Iraq. I have suggested, however, that resentment and the lack of hope create the breeding grounds for terrorists who are willing to use suiciders to kill to achieve an objective. I have made that case."
Now add the 9/11 commisions finding that there is "no credible evidence" that Saddam Hussein's government in Iraq collaborated with the al Qaeda terrorist network on any attacks on the United States and you get the basis for my statement. Do you want to agree that Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11 or start talking about how the President and 9/11 commission Senators spread leftist lies because they hate America.
I have looked at your list of Iraqi terrorist actions, Nazareth. It is very heavy on vague newspaper articles about Saddam recruiting terrorists who never seem to actually have done anything, at least in the recent past against the United States. Admittedly, I have not had a chance to look in-depth at all of them, but in a quick run through, I could not find one specific terrorist act against the U.S. in the last 10 years they actually accused Saddam of causing. So I ask you, what specific terrorist actions against the U.S. was Saddam responsible for that justify war against Iraq? The Congressional Authorization of force does mention one (and only one), the 1993 assassination plot against Former President Bush. Given that we went to war 10 years after this happened, that seems a bit of a weak reed to lean on.
As far as going into Iraq to stop genocide, I wonder do you also favor going into the Sudan now on a massive military scale, where genocide is taking place on a scale proportionally far surpassing anything that Saddam did?
I agree it was a bit too flip on my part to say we went into Iraq because the President wanted to. We did it for 3 main reasons.
1) Stop Iraq's WMD program. Oopsie, turns out they didn't have one.
2) Show our other enemy nations (Iran especially) that our military could handle them easily. Instead such a large part of our army is now trapped in Iraq for the foreseeable future that the governments of Iran and North Korea know they are safer than ever.
3) Build a model democracy that would be an example the people of other Middle Eastern countries would seize upon and overthrow their own despots to make. Anyone want to argue that people in other countries are clammering for their countries to be made more like current Iraq?
Counterfactual - Let me explain.
You said: "how many [Iraqis fighting against us] are people perfectly willing to leave us alone if we left them alone".
I figured from this you're suggesting they - the fanatics - would stop killing people, if "we left them alone". Thus, they would refuse to do what their leaders urge them to do - in other words, they would turn against their leaders.
Now one could say that the crazy clerics, too, would quit preaching terror if the Western troops withdrew, but that would make little sense.