No, dear…

This country was NOT founded on Christian principles.  Or the Ten Commandments.  Or…

I rather understand schoolbook history being taught with a smattering of lies, such as the “George Washington was so honest that he told his father he had cut down the cherry tree.”  But the extent of the lies currently being promoted by the religious right is almost frightening, particularly because it ignores so much solid history.  Kids could emerge from grammar school, start taking real courses, and fall dead from shock.  Or at least go prematurely senile from denial.  Or something like that.

Anyway, thought you’d enjoy reading the following blog post.  The subject is Thomas Jefferson’s religious views.  No, dears…he was NOT an evangelical; nor were any of the other founding fathers.

Thomas Jefferson

The War on Holidays

Ah yes, the fairly recently-deceased Andy Williams…I inserted that song by that artist here because he’s the most old-timey, Christianisty singer I can think of offhand.

But listen to the song.  He’s not singing “Merry Christmas.”  He’s singing…GASP…”Happy Holidays!”  And he’s not singing about creches, but instead about all the secular Xmas (more on that word later) symbols of Christmas that there are, and then some. Heavens, what’s Fox News going to say.  Well, this song predates Fox News by decades, as did Andy Williams.  And Fox News has never said anything.

The fact is, time was that “Happy Holidays” was not considered shocking or anti-Christian at all.  Nope, back then, people tried to keep “Christ” out of “Christmas” by wishing each other “Merry Xmas.”  Problem is, in some language or another, “X” refers to the savior. This was back in the 1960’s, however, when no one bothered to look at that language to find out what it referred to.  It was a very different world back then.  Honest.  All this Christian shit didn’t whip itself up into its present full-fledged frenzy until the 1980’s or so.  (That’s not to say it didn’t exist, but I will tell you that back then, a man considered to be an arch-conservative — Barry Goldwater — warned of dire consequences if any of those religious whackos got into government.  50 years later…)

In those days, religion and politics didn’t mix; in fact, in polite company, they weren’t even discussed.  In fact, one of the (bogus) concerns about John Kennedy was that he was Catholic and might be beholden to the Pope.  But when priests insisted on getting involved in anti-war activities, the Vatican shut them down.  Hard to imagine, but true. Anyway, the 1940’s through the 1960’s were the decades when Christmas was stripped of whatever Christianity it had.  It is not a recent development, trust me.  And no, there is no “war on Christmas.”

Mind you, I have friends in countries that are largely Christian, such as Australia, who inform me that it is now illegal to wish someone “Merry Christmas” in public.  Since the wingnut revolution is in its infancy in that country, it’s hard to know if this is true or just misinformation.  The point is, however, in the U.S. it is not illegal, nor is is likely to become so.  Christmas is too profitable to do away with.

However, Fox News is fussing and fuming and turning purple about the phrase “Happy Holidays.”  Let’s clarify something here: (1) there are not just one but MANY festivals of light — and Christmas is a festival of light, as it has deeply Pagan roots — around the winter solstice.  And although the U.S. remains largely Christian, a lot of Christians aren’t particularly Christian and the remainder of the population celebrates all sorts of stuff like Yule, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and so forth.  And you can’t always tell what someone is celebrating by looking at them.  So, “Happy Holidays,” which means “Happy HOLY days,” is a good alternative to taking a wild guess.

What Fox News is going after here is not a “war on Christmas,” since there is none and even if there were, it is hardly symbolized by the use of “Happy Holidays.”  No, what they are after is promoting religious discrimination against those who celebrate other holidays, or those who just think Christmas is one big fat overblown pain in the ass.  Like the true bullies they are, Fox News projects their intention onto others; thus, the bogus “War on Christmas” has been born. The trouble is that these attempts to control what everyone says and thinks chip away at our true freedoms, which are freedom of speech and freedom of religion.  All the whining in the world can’t disguise the minefield that has been created, especially for those of us who must deal with a diverse public.

From me you will hear Happy Holidays if I don’t know you.  You will hear Blessed Yule if I do.  The vast majority of people are okay with that. And for those who are not, I only ask them to turn off their TV set.  Thank you.

I have no idea what you just said

Sarah Palin Babbles Again

If you don’t read that, you’ll probably know what I’m talking about here anyway.  Sarah is that famous for babbling, after all.

Here’s what I don’t get: Years ago, a well-educated and intelligent — but very Tea-Partyish, anyway — friend of mine told me with happy confidence that Sarah Palin had more qualifications to be President than did Barack Obama.  When I asked him to elaborate….no surprise, all I got out of this normally verbose and quick-witted man was a blank stare coupled with a sort of empty, frozen grin.  Then he changed the subject.

That cavernous silence has been repeated again and again, with different people, when I asked them the same question after they made the same claim.

And so now Palin is babbling about feminism, which the Republicans/Tea Partiers have lately been attempting to own to disguise their attempts to destroy women’s rights.  And all she can come up with, is babble.  As you read in the attached article, nothing she said made a damn bit of sense.  The words weren’t even loosely connected.  It sounded like a textbook passage on symptoms of early dementia.

I think it’s possible to state that the teabaggers now have their own language that consists of threading buzz words together and just sort of throwing them out there.  Only other teabaggers think it makes sense.  It’s the new English.  And it’s the only way I can explain how anyone could think Sarah Palin has qualifications for anything at all, let alone the Presidency.

It just ain’t

Ken Ham.  You probably don’t know the name, but he’s a businessman (a bad one, by all accounts), who is getting Kentucky government assistance to promote religious alternatives to science.  Just now he finally got in trouble, because to get one of this “job creator’s” jobs, one has to fill out forms about being saved, belief in the literal truth of the Bible, etc.  Since this is against the constitution of Kentucky, one can imagine that some people are crying foul.

What.ever.  That’s not the point here.  The point here is how this crap got started in the first place.

When I was growing up, almost half a century ago, religion was firmly in its place on the fringes of society.  No one would have even attempted to make a living by building a creationist museum or Noahide theme park.  John Kennedy faced some questions about his loyalty to the Pope during the 1960 elections, I understand, but no one really took it seriously.  Americans have never been terribly loyal to the Vatican in modern times, anyway, and everyone knew it.  They still aren’t, and even though the Vatican just spent over 30 years trying to shame, threaten, and finally cajole everyone back into church…well, they’ve given up.  For most Catholics, Church is still just something that happens on Sunday, when the guys in the skirts do your God stuff for you.  The present Pope has all but called church leaders a bunch of idiots, and anyone who’s paying attention is just nodding their noggin and going, “yup.”  But it doesn’t matter.  The game was lost long ago.  It was lost the moment the Vatican launched into their modern inquisition, which is a loser’s weapon of choice.

The Evangelical movement is apparently only just now feeling the pressure of the outside world, and they’re reacting by violently asserting that the bible holds the entire truth of creation, because it’s God’s word.  You know…kind of like the Vatican, only with the Bible involved.  Here’s the thing: if your faith is threatened by another thread of discovery/belief, then your faith ain’t worth much.  And now I will really piss you off:

Actually the Bible is a collection of myths from ancient civilizations, capped off by a rehashing of the dying god theme that runs through the pantheons of so many long-lost pagan religions.  But I digress.  What the Bible is NOT, is science.  And vice versa.

Get this, muddleheads: science is a process.  Religion is a conclusion.  Science cannot be a religion and religion cannot be a science. It’s almost as if religion is a noun and science is a verb, but not quite (cuz that’s incorrect).

That is to say that this entire argument is bogus.  Stupid.  A waste of time and resources, not to mention the taxpayers’ money in Kentucky.  I have friends there, none of whom are sympathetic to Ham.  It might be entertaining to ask them to contribute a word or two to this blog.

In the meantime, however, I’ll say this: Ken Ham apparently was hoping that it was true that a fool and his money soon go separate ways.  Unfortunately, he didn’t bank on not finding Kentucky to be full of fools.

Article submitted by PM 

Pope on science

I can’t take it anymore!

I know, I know.  I haven’t posted here in years.  That’s because the crazy and the stupid got to be too much (and more seriously, because my personal life became nightmarish).  I have, however, developed enough of a tolerance that I’ll be back with a friggin’ vengeance in the near future.  See you all soon.

Drop it.

Huffington Post

If you read that link, you know what I’m talking about.  I won’t go into it further.  Well, maybe I will…

Sarah Palin is finished, Hoss.  I don’t care what some right-wing loudmouth says.  Right-wing loudmouths don’t have a good handle on the truth, anyway, do they?  I mean, just before the election I had one snark at me that I might as well stop making jokes about Romney’s “binder” remark on my Facebook wall because (I don’t remember the quote directly, but here’s the gist of it) “if liberals think they are going to win this election by making ‘cute’ comments on Facebook they are mistaken.”

No surprise, it seems that every day brings an increasing amount of information on Republican vote fraud.  Day by day little bits and trinkets keep trickling in, mostly ignored by the national media.  But they are there, and you don’t have to dig hard to find them.  Reference my previous post in this blog, for instance.  I found that on YouTube, for crying out loud.

Why do I mention this?  Because I think if even half the votes had been honestly tallied in a number of “red” states, the election would have been a blowout for the Democrats.  As in, not even close.  What am I basing this on?  Well, if Anonymous’s claims are true, and they indeed did meddle in Ohio on the side of truth, then there may have been vote-tampering elsewhere that went undetected.  If nothing else, it’s awfully curious that two states with documented histories of Republican vote tampering went on to be scored as victories for Obama, in spite of almost incredible Republican smugness about having those states in their pockets.

Even if there is no legality gap, there is definitely a reality gap.

Yes, since the election I have come across crabby white men and a new phenomenon: packs of young-ish (mostly in their 30’s) women of the privileged class wandering about together in their finest clothes, snarking at and bullying anyone who is “not our kind, dear.”   So I have no doubt they are out there — Republicans, that is.  But I don’t think there are as many of them as we’ve been led to believe.

Which brings me back to Sarah Palin.

I still believe she will never completely go away.  She’s too much like Donald Trump, who is a similar hopeless case.  Both are attention-hounds.  They will do and say anything to stay in the public eye.

But does that mean they should be taken seriously?  No.  Only the people who take reality TV seriously will take these two seriously.  Palin in particular took a set of paltry qualifications (for Vice President/President) and diminished them into no qualifications at all just by opening her mouth more than once.  Trump…well who the hell ever took him seriously?  He’s a parody of a parody, a second-rate clown.  He has never been anything more.

I think out here in the real world, even most Republicans realize that nominating Palin for President any time in this lifetime would lead to a very, very serious blow-out — one that would make your average volcano look like a pimple in comparison.  It would be political suicide by wishful thinking.

I think it’s time for them to get serious and really talk to people.  They need to stop dealing with the public via platitudes.  I think a fair number of them realize this now.

Will they take the lesson to heart?  Remains to be seen.  Remember that in 2008 they “learned,” then forgot very very quickly.  And goodness knows the House has learned nothing.

But as for the Huffington Post, all I can say is that if they don’t want a reputation as the new National Inquirer, they’d better drop the Palin line right now.  Stupid of the Day award goes to that publication for even mentioning the idea of Palin making a serious run for the White House.

No I was not kidding

Remember when I mentioned that Karl Rove’s on-TV (on Fox, no less) reaction to the results in Ohio made it seem like he already “knew” what the results were supposed to be and could not process it when they came out differently?  It appears that he may have suffered more of a short-circuit than we knew at the time:

Thom Hartmann

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