June 2010

Rod Parsley and Lou Engle: Together At Last

What do you get when you put Rod Parsley and Lou Engle together in the same room to discuss the desperate need for revival in America? 

Pretty much what you would expect, with Parsley telling anyone who doesn't like his use of "militaristic terminology" that they don't like the Bible because Christians are not called to debate, concede, or compromise, but to fight while Engle says that God is causing volcanoes and oil spills in order to call us to repentance:

In this second clip, Engle laments the rampant "sexual immorality" in our culture, saying the "Book of Revelation Jesus, with his blazing eyes of fire" is coming to fight the Church's toleration of the Jezebel Spirit while Parsley says we have "accepted secular humanism" by telling people they should feel good about themselves instead of standing by the Biblical command to crucify the flesh:

With Heath Gone, Maine Family Policy Council Seeks To Change Tone and Reputation

Last year, Mike Heath of the Maine Family Policy Council found himself being sidelined in the Religious Right's battle against gay marriage in the state due to his penchant for saying ridiculous things.

As such, he announced that he was leaving the organization in order to go to Africa to distribute solar cookers, only to return a few months later as head of the American Family Association affiliate in Maine and launch a shockingly short bid for Governor.

And now that Heath has moved on, so too can the Maine Family Policy Council, which has announced a new interim president and executive director who sees his mission as undoing all of the embarrassment Heath caused the organization and changing its reputation: 

The Christian Civic League of Maine, recently renamed the Maine Family Policy Council, has announced a new interim president and executive director. Long affiliated with the Bangor Christian School, Carroll Conley of Glenburn will succeed Michael Heath of China, who stepped down last fall after nearly 20 years with the League. Conley believes it's time the organization changed its tone.

...

"I've had a long interest and connection with the Christian Civic League and the League having a need for leadership," Conley says. He says he'd like to change the reputation of the organization, which, under Michael Heath, has been a strong, and often controversial voice in state politics, working hard to ban same-sex marriage in Maine.

"There definitely needs to be a change of tone with the League," Conley says. "What we've got to make sure that we do as folks that have anything attached 'Christian' to it, no matter how controversial it gets or no matter how passionate people may feel about something, that you have that weight and that responsibility to do it in a way that's consistent with those values -- not just the morality of the issue but in areas of respect and dissent."

...

Conley says he hopes to strike a balance between the Council's Christian social policies and a tolerance for opposing ideas, especially on the issue of abortion. He says the organization must show compassion toward those who are pro-choice.

The War On Norquist Gets Personal

When the news broke that Grover Norquist had agreed to join the board of GOProud, the conservative gay group, the reaction from the Religious Right was disappointment mixed with an attempt to edify Norquist about supposedly radical nature of the group in order to get him to see the error of his ways.

When that didn't work, they tried convincing him that his willingness to work with GOProud was going to undermine his "prestige" and effectiveness as social conservatives wondered if they could trust him.

That didn't work either, so now they have gone into full-attack mode, as Brent Bozell does in his latest commentary:

Comes now the news that fiscal conservative leader Grover Norquist, a man who prides himself on forming grand working coalitions, has joined the board of a group called GOProud, calling the group “an important part of the conservative movement” with a commitment to “core conservative values.”

It’s a gay group. And Norquist thinks social conservatives are going to accept this absolute abandonment?

Traditional marriage and the right of religious people to speak out against homosexuality as a sin are “core conservative values.” Proposition 8 in California – defending the institution of marriage, the only thing the GOP won in 2008 -- was victorious because culturally conservative blacks and Hispanics joined the GOP coalition.

Norquist wants to take the GOP in the exact opposite direction now, full speed ahead, the consequences be damned ... Norquist has declared open war on social conservatives. Note to Chairman Steele: If he succeeds, and they leave the party, the GOP is ruined.

The FRC's Tom McClusky is also going after Norquist as well, openly questioning Norquist's ethics by highlighting, among other things, his ties to Jack Abramoff:

I’ve got to say, many in the conservative movement — especially among social conservatives — saw Grover Norquist’s, the president of Americans for Tax Reform (ATR), move to join the advisory council of the homosexual advocacy group GOProud as “Grover being Grover.” The phrase meaning that he is well known for his questionable affiliations (from being a middle man for convicted lobbyist Jack Abramoff, profiting from the oppressed Northern Mariana Islands to partnering with Poker Players Alliance to advocate for legislation that ultimately taxes the Internet) and also for his disdain of social conservative issues like life and marriage (once deriding pro-lifers as “pontificators” and on marriage that he doesn’t “focus on it.”) Yet in this case he is actually going beyond his normal “profit and party before principles” motto.

...

The argument I have heard from Grover’s supporters is that he is willing to work with anyone who fights for lower taxes. However, even here GOProud fails to live up to those standards — unless you define “fighting for lower taxes” to be limited to “fighting for lower taxes for gay families” (as opposed to for everyone). In fact, most of their “conservative” positions are centered and conditional on that the “gay community” gets special carve-outs. They oppose the Death Tax, but according to their own website they oppose it because it “discriminates against gay and lesbian couples for whom there is no marital exemption.” They opposed the health care bill, and again according to their own website, because it “does indeed discriminate against gay families”

Grover of course has every right to associate himself with whomever he wants, but he shouldn’t call himself conservative if he is willing to disregard even ATR principles. By joining GOProud’s board he is not saying “I agree with you 80 percent of the time” but is instead fully embracing their agenda.

The Pathetic Desperation of the Anti-Kagan Campaign

Because the Right has very little ammunition against Elena Kagan heading into her confirmation hearings next week, they have been desperately trying to make up "controversies" that they can try to use against her.

Which is why a donation made by Saudi Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal to Harvard University to establish an Islamic Studies program at the time that Kagan was Dean of Harvard Law School has been transformed into a right-wing claim that Kagan supports Sharia Law and "the enemy" while hating our troops. 

So I guess it was only a matter of time until we started seeing things like this in Frank Gaffney's column in The Washington Times:

Hats off to Sen. Jeff Sessions. The top Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee has opened up an important new front in the debate over Solicitor General Elena Kagan's fitness to serve on the Supreme Court: her attitude toward the repressive legal code authoritative Islam calls Shariah and her enabling of efforts to insinuate it into this country.

By so doing, the Alabama legislator has given his colleagues and the country an opportunity not only to flesh out and evaluate the thin public record of President Obama's second nominee to a lifetime appointment on the nation's highest court but also afforded us all what Mr. Obama might call a "teachable moment."

Specifically, this Supreme Court nomination offers a prism for examining the concerted and ominous campaign under way to bring Shariah to America, thanks to the troubling role Ms. Kagan played during her tenure as dean of Harvard Law School.

Right Wing Round-Up

  • PFAW: New PFAW Poll Shows Americans Want Action to Correct Citizens United.
  • Amanda Marcotte: Conservative Feminism: The Idea That Women Are Too Stupid To Know the Difference.
  • David Weigel: Honolulu city clerk debunks new 'birther' theory.
  • TPM: Fundraising Group Led By GOP All-Stars Falling Short Of Goals.
  • Alan Colmes: Thomas Sowell: Obama “Dismantling” Democracy Much Like Hitler Did.
  • Finally, do you have a Twitter account?  Ours is now being written by a real live person: Me! So follow us. 

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Maybe someone can explain to me how recognizing families with two dads "ensures more children will be excluded from their best chance for stability and success."
  • Outrage. Gays get to go to the White House, but Obama wouldn't host a National Day of Prayer event!
  • Did you know that Clare Boothe Luce was an ardent advocate of LSD?
  • Jack Abramoff is now working at a pizza parlor.
  • I frankly doubt that Bill Keller even has $10,000.
  • Pat Robertson sure does seem to get involved in a lot of lawsuits.
  • Finally, the quote of the day from Matthew Continetti, associate editor of The Weekly Standard and author of The Persecution of Sarah Palin: "For [Glenn] Beck, conspiracy theories are not aberrations. They are central to his worldview. They are the natural consequence of assuming that the world hangs by a thread, and that everyone is out to get you. On his television program, Beck promised to 'find out what’s true and what’s not with the FEMA concentration camps'—referring to the Federal Emergency Management Agency, a federal bureaucracy that chiefly funnels relief funds to victims of natural disasters, and is more commonly (and accurately) thought of as punchless. Beck later acknowledged that his staff could not find any evidence for such camps."

Scarborough: Gen. McChrystal Sacrificing Himself for Soldiers To Protest WH Officials Who Hate The Military

Today I tuned in to listen to the radio program hosted by Vision America's Rick Scarborough because the scheduled guest was to be Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council. 

The title of Scarbrough's show is "Mixing Church and State, God's Way."  Seriously. 

Unfortunately Perkins didn't appear on the program and was replaced by Shawn Akers from Liberty Law School, but I did manage to record the beginning of the broadcast where Scarborough weighed in on the big story regarding the controversy stemming from statements Gen. Stanley McChrystal made in an article in Rolling Stone.

In Scarborough's view, McChrystal should be hailed because he "has enough courage to sacrifice himself for his soldiers" by standing up to the Obama administration which hates the military and is bringing God's judgment upon America ... even though he did so in that "filthy magazine" Rolling Stone:

General McChrystal spoke to one of the writers for one of the most liberal magazines in the country, Rolling Stone magazine. No, I won't be purchasing that copy, I wouldn't give my money to that kind of a magazine.

The Washington Post carries an article from the parts released by this filthy magazine - one of the leading magazines in the rock and roll world and in its own right has become a source for a lot of people's news. But all of us ought to be asking why would a general of this caliber who has a stellar career - came up through special ops, is a real hero of heroes, a soldier's soldier - why would he put in jeopardy a stellar career to give such open condemnation for the way the war is run, for what he calls the greatest enemy "the wimps in the White House." Why in the world would he put so much at stake? Is it because he has enough courage to sacrifice himself for his soldiers?

General McChrystal has created quite an overnight firestorm with his comments about the way the war is being run, about the people in charge. Folks, there is no secret the people in charge of our military, the civilians in charge, in large measure have a disdain for the military.

Our government, since the current administration has taken over, has been more courteous and kind to our enemies in the Middle East than they have to our allies. They way they've treated Israel has been shameful and I think a lot of the tragedy we're facing right now could be attributed to that, if in fact you believe there is a God in Heaven, and you believe that the Bible is true, and you believe that God keeps his promises and also holds forth the judgment the he promises to those that transgress his law.

Zimbabwe, the ACLJ, and the Criminalization of Homosexuality

Last year, we noticed that Pat Robertson's American Center for Law and Justice was setting up satellite offices in both Zimbabwe and Kenya with plans to participate in the drafting of their respective constitutions. 

A few months ago, we saw how the ACLJ was working out outlaw abortion in Kenya's constitution, and this story makes me wonder what sort of impact they might be having on Zimbabwe's:

Didymus Mutasa, a powerful figure in President Robert Mugabe’s Zanu PF political party, said his party will see to it that homosexuality is outlawed in the new constitution and that stiff penalties will be put in place for those who engage in the practice.

Mutasa, Minister of Presidential Affairs and Zanu (PF) politburo Secretary for administration, told villagers that his party had already taken a position on what should be included or excluded in the new constitution.

"As a party, we now have our positions for inclusion in the new constitution and we hope these will be captured accurately,” Mutasa said.

“Practices such as homosexuality, abortion and euthanasia which offend human and public morality should be outlawed.”

Mutasa said the new document should contain stiff penalties to ensure those who indulged in homosexuality were dealt with severely.

He said he had been angered by some Christian organisations, which were lobbying for the inclusion of gay rights in the new document.

Mutasa said foreign interference on such matters was unacceptable.

"We are surprised that some Christian organisations are advocating for gay rights to be included in the constitution, yet we know that gay marriages are even forbidden in the Bible,” Mutasa said.

The ACLJ has been actively involved in the process of drafting Zimbabwe's new constitution and regularly been meeting with government officials:

Given the ACLJ's deep involvement in this process, it is not unreasonable to ask if the organization had anything to do language to criminalize homosexuality in Zimbabwe and, if they didn't, whether they support such efforts.

She Might Not Have A Radio Show, But She Has A Blog

A few weeks back, Janet Porter asked her supporters what would cause them to visit her Faith 2 Action website more frequently and among the top responses was "regular updates or blog postings by Janet."

Of course, that choice only received 8 votes, but since only 44 votes were cast in total, that was enough to put it among the leading suggestions. 

As such, Porter has responded by launching a new blog and using her very first post to announce that while her radio program is off the air indefinitely, she'll be contributing daily commentaries to American Family Association Radio, and still trying to defend her May Day prayer rally (which cost her her own radio program in the fist place) by claiming attendance was "in the thousands" with "viewership in the millions":  

Let me start by thanking all those who have prayed for and supported Faith2Action. You have helped make possible many of the things we have done together over the years, including the Presidential debate in 2007, the How to Take Back America conference last fall, and the Israel Friendship Project this spring, in which 30,000 yellow roses were sent to encourage Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the people of Israel.

Thanks also to all those who have contributed through your time, prayer, and financial support to May Day. God was honored that day. We were blessed with a beautiful, warm day, safety in travel, and no major technical or security problems. All of these things were answers to prayer. There were also scores of people (that we know about) who humbly prayed for Jesus to become their Savior and Lord that day. Praise God! The overall attendance was in the thousands, and viewership in the millions, but whether it was enough to withhold God’s judgment and give our nation another chance remains to be seen. We obeyed God and stood in the gap, the results are up to Him.

While we are no longer airing our daily radio program, the good news is that the 60-second daily Faith2Action commentaries will be back up and running this month, thanks to our partners at the American Family Association. They have agreed to produce and air them on their American Family Radio (AFR) network at 1:15 p.m. Eastern (12:15 p.m. Central), along with the Bott Radio Network, and others.

We are also in pre-production of “True 2 Life the Movie.” It’s a true romantic comedy that includes my work in Ohio to pass the nation’s first ban on partial-birth abortion. You’ll hear more about that in upcoming entries!

Porter's claim that thousands attended is laughable, since Truth Wins Out's Wayne Besen was there and he estimated the crowd at less than 300.

Is anyone surprise that Porter would lie in her inaugural blog post?

Norquist Unfazed By Religious Right Outrage

Last week we noted that Grover Norquist had joined the advisory council of GOProud, a gay conservative organization, and that Religious Right groups like Focus on the Family and the Family Research Council were outraged.

I have to say that Norquist doesn't seem overly concerned, telling Focus on the Family's CitizenLink that he is willing to work with anyone who shares his agenda: 

Norquist says he agrees with GOProud on some issues that are important to him.

"When people are willing to fight for limited government and lower taxes," he said, "I'm willing to work with them."

Norquist said he's not worried that his appointment will hurt the conservative cause in November.

"One fish, one hook," he said. "Every voter only needs one reason to vote for a congressman and a senator who will stop the Obama nonsense in Washington, DC."

Of course, that is just upsetting Focus even more:

Tom Minnery, senior vice president for CitizenLink, disagreed the Norquist's summation.

Minnery said that by lending his name and prestige to the minuscule number of homosexuals who are conservative, he is more likely to earn the distrust of the far larger numbers of grassroots social conservatives with whom he should be in coalition.