Friday, April 14, 2006

Stupid, Mean, Scared ... You're Republican Material

I once read or heard something like "Not all Republicans are stupid but most stupid people are Republicans. " FireDogLake has a few guest posters dropping in some gems today that seem to play into all of that, with the addition of some fear and hate and racism and ...

Kevin C. of Catch fame gives us Late Night FDL : Fear and Loathing in the Nuttersphere and Taylor Marsh gives us Chocolate Eggs, Faith and the Democratic Party . If you head over to Taylor Marsh you can get another take on Democrats and Faith with an opening quote that I liked, repeating hereafter,
At the center of this early evangelical doctrine (1820s - 1830s) was the idea of original sin: we were all born stained by corruption and fleshly desire, and the true purpose of earthly life was to redeem this. The trials of economic life--the sweat of hard labor, the fear of poverty, the self-denial involved in saving--were earthly tests of sinfulness and virtue. While evangelicals believed salvation was ultimately possible only through conversion and faith, they saw the pain of earthly life as means of atonement for original sin. These were the people that writers like Dickens detested. ... Evangelicals interpreted the mental anguish of poverty and debt, and the physical agony of hunger or cold, as natural spurs to prick the conscience of sinners. They believed that the suffering of the poor would provoke remorse, reflection, and ultimately the conversion that would change their fate. In other words, poor people were poor for a reason, and helping them out of poverty would endanger their mortal souls. It was the evangelical who began to see the business mogul as an heroic figure, his wealth a triumph of righteous will. LET THERE BE MARKETS The Evangelical Roots of Economics, by Gordon Bigelow (Harper's Magazine)
This sort of work helps us see how the market "ideas" of the right are even formed on misinterpretations of morality/religion. Social justice is really the best part of the Christian faith and yet so little of that is offered by the local churches in my area. Certainly I know some few true conservatives and libertarians that are reasoned in their positions and rather "compassionate" yet they are rare. Peace ... or War!