economy

Steve Lonegan Gets Job Pushing Gold Standard With Anti-Gay Group That Supported His Campaign

The Star-Ledger reported earlier this week that Steve Lonegan, the unsuccessful Republican candidate for Senate in last year’s New Jersey special election, has a new job: leading the anti-gay, anti-choice American Principles Project’s sideline effort to bring back the gold standard.

Lonegan told The Auditor he is now the director of monetary policy for the American Principles Project, a conservative advocacy group. He plans to work to spread the gospel about what he says as the Federal Reserve’s “failed policy” and the need to bring back the gold standard.

“We will be working hard in states like Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina to see to it that the (presidential) primary candidates in both parties are forced to talk about this issue,” Lonegan said. “They can’t hide from it.”

The American Principles Project was started in 2009 by Robert George, the intellectual leader of the anti-gay movement, to pressure Republican politicians to embrace both fiscal and social conservative policies. APP currently employs Maggie Gallagher, who founded the National Organization for Marriage along with George and served as NOM’s first president.

In his new job, it seems that Lonegan will unite the main political interests of APP’s chairman Sean Fieler, a little-known hedge fund manager who has become a major donor to the Religious Right and to social conservative causes in New York and New Jersey.

As we noted in a profile of Fieler earlier this year, the gold standard seems to be a pet project of his, so much so that an idea that is widely dismissed among mainstream economists has become a major policy platform of the American Principles Project. The issue was mentioned nowhere in the group’s original mission statement and doesn’t seem to have appeared on the group’s website until Fieler came on board as chairman in 2010.

Fieler and the American Principles Project have a history with Lonegan. Fieler is the major funder of the American Principles Fund , a super PAC affiliated with APP, which last year spent nearly $100,000 running anti-choice ads against Lonegan’s Democratic opponent Cory Booker. Fieler himself has maxed out personal contributions to Lonegan’s recent campaigns, giving his candidate committee $10,400 over the past two years.

Now, Lonegan will bring his unabashed anti-choice and anti-gay politics (remember when he speculated about whether Booker was gay?) to help unite the American Principles Project’s social and economic policy priorities.

The Star-Ledger notes that until this year, APP employed Booker’s current Republican Senate opponent Jeff Bell.

Barton: 'The Free Market Will Take Care of [the] Crooks'

Today's episode of "WallBuilders Live" was dedicated to defending free-market capitalism, as Rick Green and David Barton asserted that there should literally be no government regulation or oversight of any aspect of our economy whatsoever:

Barton: A free market means that it is a market that is free from government regulations. Now, people today don't think that. They say free market [but think] "well, the government does need to regulate to make sure there's no corruption." No, no, no.

Green: But even that phrase "to regulate" means to make regular. It means just keep it ...

Barton: ... standardize it ...

Green: ... yeah, keep there from being tariffs between states and that sort of thing. It doesn't mean micromanage your marketplace.

Barton: And it's amazing how many people who say "I believe in the free market" still want some sort of government oversight. "Well, you got all those crooks on Wall Street" ... hey, the free market will take care of it.

Green: That's exactly right.

Barton: The free market will take care of crooks and they'll be out of business and we also have laws that say, hey you can't steal. And if you steal, you're going to be in jail. Talk to [Bernie] Madoff about that, see how it worked out for him.

Green: It's the areas that we most put regulation in to that then become a problem ...

Barton: ... the most corrupt ...

Green: ... the areas we got to go bail out.

I guess it should be pointed out that Madoff pled guilty [PDF] to "securities fraud, investment adviser fraud, mail fraud, wire fraud, three counts of money laundering, false statements, perjury, false filings with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission, and theft from an employee benefit plan," violations of the very sorts of regulations that Barton and Green believe are totally  unnecessary.

The Right to Vote Under Attack

Last night, People For the American Way Foundation’s Andrew Gillum went on PoliticsNation with Rev. Al Sharpton to discuss our new Right Wing Watch: In Focus report on attacks on voting rights.

Watch here:

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And read the report.
 

Cross-posted from PFAW Blog

Right Wing Round-Up

Beisner Attacks Evangelicals Who Want To Reduce Mercury Poisoning

Energy industry apologist Calvin Beisner of the Cornwall Alliance appeared on Janet Parshall’s radio show yesterday to once again do the bidding of polluters. As we’ve reported in The Green Dragon Slayers, Beisner has no scientific credentials but is closely tied to energy companies. During the interview, Beisner directed his animus as the Evangelical Environmental Network, which launched a pledge to combat mercury poisoning:

One in six babies, over 700,000 each year, are born with harmful levels of mercury in their blood, and coal-burning power plants are the largest source of domestic mercury pollution.

Jesus said, "Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these."

We believe this is an urgent and escalating moral crisis which calls for immediate action!

According to the National Institutes of Health, “For fetuses, infants and children, the primary health effects of mercury are on neurological development. Even low levels of mercury exposure such as result from mother’s consumption methylmercury in dietary sources can adversely affect the brain and nervous system.”

But Beisner said that it was more important to leave polluters unregulated. He insisted that regulations against pollution were actually going to kill people and that his pro-corporate view is the real “pro-life” position. He went on to say that advocates of environmental protection want to deliberately weaken the economy because “the environmental movement hates human prosperity”:

These were people who frankly didn’t know the science behind it, all they saw was that babies were endangered and they wanted to protect these babies. Well of course we would want to protect the babies but the science isn’t good and so consequently the EEN has succeeded, at least temporarily anyway, in fostering the notion that this is a pro-life cause. It's not a pro-life cause if anything the opposite is a pro-life cause because whereas the current levels of mercury admissions are not causing any deaths to anyone, the reduced economic output for this country will indeed increase premature deaths among the American population.



The real aim is to try to get us to use less energy overall because energy fuels a prosperous economy and the environmental movement hates human prosperity because it sees it as a threat to the environment.

Tea Party Nation Urges Businesses To Stop Hiring In Order To Hurt Obama

Tea Party Nation sent to their members today a message from activist Melissa Brookstone urging businesspeople to “not hire a single person” to protest the Obama administration’s supposed “war against business and my country.” Brookstone writes that business owners should stop hiring new employees in order to stand up to “this new dictator,” the “global Progressive socialist movement,” Hollywood, the media and Occupy Wall Street.

Brookstone writes:

Resolved that: The Obama administration and the Democrat-controlled Senate, in alliance with a global Progressive socialist movement, have participated in what appears to be a globalist socialist agenda of redistribution of wealth, and the waging of class warfare against our constitutional republic's heritage of individual rights, free market capitalism, and indeed our Constitution itself, with the ultimate goal of collapsing the U.S. economy and globalizing us into socialism.

Resolved that: President Obama has seized what amount to dictatorial powers to bypass our Congress, and that because the Congress is controlled by a Progressive socialist Senate that will not impeach one of their kind, they have allowed this and yielded what are rightfully congressional powers to this new dictator.

Resolved that: By their agenda and actions, those in our government who swore oaths to protect and defend our Constitution have committed treason against the United States.

Resolved that: The current administration and Democrat majority in the Senate, in conjunction with Progressive socialists from all around the country, especially those from Hollywood and the left leaning news media (Indeed, most of the news media.) have worked in unison to advance an anti-business, an anti-free market, and an anti-capitalist (anti-individual rights and property ownership) agenda.



Resolved that: Our President, the Democrats-Socialists, most of the media, and most of those from Hollywood, have now encouraged and supported "Occupy" demonstrations in our streets, which are now being perpetrated across the globe, and which are being populated by various marxists, socialists and even communists, and are protesting against business, private property ownership and capitalism, something I thought I'd never see in my country, in my lifetime.

I, an American small business owner, part of the class that produces the vast majority of real, wealth producing jobs in this country, hereby resolve that I will not hire a single person until this war against business and my country is stopped.

Who’s Who at the Values Voter Summit 2011

This weekend, nearly every major GOP presidential candidate, along with the top two Republicans in the House of Representatives, will speak at the Values Voter Summit, an annual gathering of the leaders of the movement to integrate fundamentalist Christianity and American politics.

The candidates – Mitt Romney, Rick Perry, Michele Bachmann, Herman Cain, Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich – and the congressmen – House Speaker John Boehner and Majority Leader Eric Cantor – will join a who’s who of the far Right at the event. The organizers of the Values Voter Summit and many of its prominent attendees are on the frontlines of removing hard-won rights for gay and lesbian Americans, restricting women’s access to reproductive healthcare, undermining the free exercise rights of non-Christian religions and breaking down the wall of separation between church and state.

In perhaps the starkest illustration of how far even mainstream Republican candidates are willing to go to appease the Religious Right, Mitt Romney is scheduled to speak immediately before the American Family Association’s Bryan Fischer, a man whose record of hate speech should be shocking by any standard. Along with regularly denigrating gays and lesbians, Muslims, and other minority groups, Fischer has no love for Romney’s Mormon faith. In a radio program last week, Fischer insisted that Mormons have no right to religious freedom under the First Amendment and falsely claimed that the LDS Church still sanctions polygamy.

People For the American Way has called on GOP presidential candidates appearing at the conference to denounce Fischer’s bigotry. Last year, PFAW issued a similar call to attendees, which was met with silence.

The following is a guide to some of the individuals with whom the leaders of the GOP will be rubbing shoulders at the Values Voter Summit this year.

Bryan Fischer

Bryan Fischer is the Director of Issues Analysis at the American Family Association, which is a sponsor of the Values Voter Summit. Fischer acts as the chief spokesman for the group and also hosts its flagship radio program, Focal Point, on which he has interviewed a number of prominent figures including Bachmann, Gingrich, Santorum and Mike Huckabee.

On his radio program and in blog posts, Fischer frequently expresses unmitigated bigotry toward a number of minority groups, including gays and lesbians, Muslim Americans, Native Americans, low-income African Americans and Mormons.

Fischer has:

At a speech at last year’s Values Voter Summit, Fischer said that if Christians don’t get involved in politics, they “make a deliberate decision to turn over the running of the United States government to atheists and pagans.” Of the gay rights movement, he warned, “We are going to have to choose, as a nation, between the homosexual agenda and freedom, because the two cannot coexist.”

Tony Perkins

Tony Perkins is president of the Family Research Council, the main organizer of this weekend’s summit. Perkins leads the group’s efforts against gay rights, abortion rights and church/state separation.

The FRC famously expressed its hostility to religious pluralism in a 2000 statement blasting a Hindu priest who was invited to give an opening prayer in Congress: "[W]hile it is true that the United States of America was founded on the sacred principle of religious freedom for all, that liberty was never intended to exalt other religions to the level that Christianity holds in our country's heritage…. Our Founders … would have found utterly incredible the idea that all religions, including paganism, be treated with equal deference."

The FRC has one of the most anti-gay platforms of any major political organization, including expressions of support for the criminalization of homosexuality. Earlier this year, the group called on members to pray for the continuation of Malawi’s law prohibiting homosexuality , under which a gay couple was sentenced to fourteen years in jail. Senior fellow Peter Sprigg said he would “much prefer to export homosexuals from the United States than to import them into the United States because we believe homosexuality is destructive to society.”

Perkins himself frequently reflects the extreme views of his organization. He:

At last year’s Values Voter Summit, Perkins managed to simultaneously insult U.S. servicemembers and several important U.S. allies in Iraq and Afghanistan, saying that armies that allow gays and lesbians to serve openly “ participate in parades, they don’t fight wars to keep the world free .”

Mat Staver

Mat Staver is the head of the Liberty University School of Law and its legal affiliate, Liberty Counsel, both sponsors of the Values Voter Summit. Liberty Counsel vehemently opposes rights for gays and lesbians, and in July filed the lawsuit to overturn New York’s Marriage Equality Act . The group’s Director of Cultural Affairs Matt Barber has called marriage equality “ rebellion against God” and said LGBT youth are more likely to commit suicide because they know “ what they are doing is unnatural, is wrong, [and] is immoral .” Barber has also described liberalism as “hatred for God” and said the president and Democrats “are anti-God.” In fact, Liberty Counsel claimed that Obama is “ pushing America to move under the curse ” of God and “ jeopardizing our nation” for purportedly not supporting Israel.

Through his role at Liberty Counsel and on his radio program Faith & Freedom, Staver has:

Staver aggressively promotes “ex-gay” reparative therapy and warns that gays and lesbians are “ intent on trampling upon the fundamental freedoms ” of others. He is also closely linked to the saga of Lisa Miller, a woman represented by Liberty Counsel who kidnapped her daughter and fled to Central America after a court granted custody to her former partner, a lesbian woman. Although Liberty Counsel denies involvement in the kidnapping, earlier this year Miller was reportedly staying at the house of Staver’s administrative assistant’s father in Nicaragua . Staver has also taught the Miller case in his law classes as an example of an instance where “God’s law” preempts “man’s law.”

Jerry Boykin

Retired Army Lt. Gen. William “Jerry” Boykin sparked a controversy when, as a high-ranking official in the Bush Defense Department, he framed the War on Terror as a holy war against Islam. He has since built a career as a Religious Right speaker, specializing in anti-Muslim rhetoric and anti-Obama conspiracy theories. Boykin rejects religious freedom for American Muslims, claiming that Islam “is not just a religion, it is a totalitarian way of life.” In an interview with Bryan Fischer, he called for “no mosques in America.”

Boykin is a leading member of the dominionist group The Oak Initiative. In a speech at the group’s conference in April, he declared that George Soros and the Council on Foreign Relations conspired to collapse the U.S. economy in order to help President Obama get elected. Last year, he told the group that President Obama was using his health care reform legislation as a cover to establish a private army of Brownshirts loyal just to him .

Star Parker

Parker is a long-time Religious Right activist who is particularly active in anti-gay and anti-abortion rights work. As Washington, DC was poised to legalize marriage equality, Parker warned that it would lead to more HIV infections in the city, which would “ transform officially into Sodom.” In a recent radio interview with Tony Perkins, Parker mused that black family life was “ more healthy” under slavery than it is today and has accused liberals of treating Justice Clarence Thomas and Gov. Sarah Palin like runaway slaves. She has called legal abortion a “genocide” on par with slavery and the Holocaust.

Ed Vitagliano

As the AFA’s research director, Ed Vitagliano helped co-produce the 2000 anti-gay documentary “It’s Not Gay,” which is riddled with misleading statistics about gays and lesbians and promotes “ex-gay” reparative therapy. The “documentary” starred ex-gay leader Michael Johnston, a self-described “former homosexual,” who was later revealed to have been secretly having sex with other men. Vitagliano’s anti-gay work has continued apace — on the AFA’s radio program this year, Vitagliano argued that gay men are “ abusing the nature of the design of the human body” and said homosexuality is not a “ natural and normal and healthy activity.” Vitagliano also scolded congressman and civil rights hero John Lewis for supporting marriage equality , saying that Lewis “thumbed [his] nose” at God and “needs to go back and read his Bible.”

Bishop Harry Jackson

Jackson, who built his career as an avowed opponent of rights for gays and lesbians, is a regular speaker at Religious Right conferences. He has called for a “SWAT Team” of “Holy Ghost terrorists” to work against hate crimes legislation that protects gays and lesbians, and said that black organizations that support gay rights have “ sold out the black community” and have been “ co-opted by the radical gay movement .” Jackson claims that gay marriage is part of “ a Satanic plot to destroy our seed” and that the larger gay rights movement is “ an insidious intrusion of the Devil.”

Along with his fierce opposition to LGBT rights, Jackson has compared legal abortion to “lynching” and urged the Senate to defeat Elena Kagan’s nomination to the Supreme Court because she is not a Protestant (Kagan is Jewish). Jackson has even described his political efforts in apocalyptic terms, telling a Religious Right group before the 2010 elections, “God is saying to us ‘I want to pick a fight in which I can wipe out my enemies and cause them to be silenced once and for all.’ This is where America is; if we do not recognize and repent, we are going to see our way of life destroyed as we now know it.”

Lila Rose

Rose is the anti-choice activist responsible for carrying out a deceptive hit job against Planned Parenthood this year. Members of Rose’s group, Live Action, went to Planned Parenthood clinics around the country posing as clients seeking help with a child sex trafficking ring. Planned Parenthood alerted the FBI about the activity, and the one staffer who handled the supposed traffickers inappropriately was promptly fired. Nevertheless, Rose claimed that her hoax proved “beyond a shadow of a doubt that Planned Parenthood intentionally breaks state and federal laws and covers up the abuse of young girls it claims to serve.”

Rose is no newcomer to the Values Voter Summit: in a speech at 2009’s summit, she called for abortions to be performed “in the public square.”

Glenn Beck

Until Beck’s Fox News program was canceled earlier this year, he was one of the Right’s most visible fear-mongers and conspiracy theorists. When his violent rhetoric inspired some real threats against progressive leaders, he laughed off the critics who urged him to choose his words more responsibly. Beck’s elaborate conspiracy theories include the idea that socialists and Islamists were planning a global caliphate, with the help of American progressives; an obsession with the progressive funder George Soros, at whom he leveled a number of anti-Semitic smears including a personal attack that the Anti-Defamation league called “horrific”; and a distrust of President Obama, who he once said was “racist” with a “ deep-seated hatred for white people or the white culture .”

On air, Beck joked about killing prominent progressives (for instance, poisoning Nancy Pelosi’s wine), but frequently insisted that it is progressives who were urging violence, even predicting his own martyrdom. In one 2010 broadcast, he warned that "anarchists, Marxists, communists, revolutionaries, Maoists" have to "eliminate 10 percent of the U.S. population" in order to "gain control."

After a terrorist in Oslo killed dozens of young members of Norway’s Labor Party at an island summer camp, Beck attacked the victims , comparing the camp to “Hitler Youth” and calling it “disturbing.”

Maddow Admonishes GOP Field For Sharing The Stage With Bryan Fischer

On Friday, Rachel Maddow reproached Republican presidential candidates for planning to appear alongside American Family Association spokesman Bryan Fischer at the upcoming Values Voter Summit. Maddow pointed out that Fischer, along with being “outlandishly all caps bigoted against every other group in America that you can think of” with his anti-gay, anti-Muslim and anti-Native American rhetoric, believes that the First Amendment does not apply to Mormons, which makes it “particularly awkward” that Mitt Romney, a Mormon, is speaking immediately before Fischer at the conference.

Watch, with the clip beginning three minutes into the segment:

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Maddow Examines Cindy Jacobs's Claim That "The Land Is Starting To Rejoice" In Texas

Last night Rachel Maddow discussed Cindy Jacobs’s prophetic word that while the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell triggered mass bird deaths, Rick Perry’s The Response prayer rally literally healed the land of Texas from the curse of Native American cannibals. Jacobs was an official endorser of The Response and her protégé Pam Olsen now co-chairs Perry’s Presidency 5 leadership team in Florida. As Maddow points out, the severe drought in Texas has only intensified since Rick Perry called for statewide prayer for rain and organized The Response.

“With all due respect, since Rick Perry’s stadium prayer event in Houston, Texas has been quite literally on fire,” Maddow said, noting that “Texas has not only been burning but it’s still locked in it’s terrible, historic drought.” After playing the two videos of Jacobs from Right Wing Watch, Maddow said, “But if Cindy Jacobs really thinks that Governor Perry’s prayer event has led to the land in Texas rejoicing along with the cannibal spirits, I protest, along with the puppy in the drought crack.”

Watch:

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FRC: Pray That Don't Ask Don't Tell Is Reinstated

Following the certification of the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, the Family Research Council today is asking members to pray that the “godless policy be reversed.” Their prayer alert echoes the message of FRC president Tony Perkins that the organization will be dedicated to monitoring the supposedly devastating consequences of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell’s repeal. The group warns that the “Pandora’s Box has been opened” and that President Obama will need to answer “questions about religious freedom, conscience exemptions, and same-sex partner benefits” from Republican congressmen. Pierre Bynum, FRC’s National Prayer Director, writes:

Don't Ask Don't Tell -- Yesterday DADT ceased to be law. Openly homosexual men and lesbians, including thousands who were dismissed for violation of the abandoned policy, may now enlist or reenlist in the U.S. Military. This is one of the President's two premier achievements since his election (the other being the passage of Obamacare). Experts say there are no plans to monitor results of the new policy and no rules for dealing with predictable problems that will arise. Homosexual activists are urging their cohort to lay low, to help make this transition a non-event. But Pandora's Box has been opened. House Armed Services Committee Chairman Buck McKeon (R-CA) and Rep. Joe Wilson (R-SC) tried to persuade Defense Secretary Leon Panetta to postpone the deadline, but to no avail. Congress still awaits answers to their questions about religious freedom, conscience exemptions, and same-sex partner benefits. Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA) has introduced a bill to protect servicemen whose values forbid homosexual practice from being punished.

May Americans not rest until such protections are put in place, and may this godless policy be reversed in the not-too-distant future! (Eze 33:10-16; 1 Tim 1:5, 18-19; 3:9; 4:2; 1 Pet 3:15-16; Jude 7)

Pavone Says Support For Abortion Rights Is Akin To Supporting Terrorism

While in Amarillo, Texas, after his archdiocese recalled him from New York over allegations of financial mismanagement, Frank Pavone of Priests for Life is still making his voice heard. Pavone writes in his blog today that in the same way voters cannot find common ground with politicians that support terrorism, they can’t find common ground with pro-choice candidates:

“When I preach – and help other priests to preach – the clear message that candidates and parties must defend life, some – including clergy – complain to me that my message hurts their favorite candidate or party. My response? ‘Go tell your favorite candidate or party to get the babies’ blood off their hands and clean up their act regarding defending life. Then my words won’t hurt them anymore.’ ”

… “What if a candidate supported terrorism,” Father Pavone asked. “Would citizens say, ‘Well, I disagree with you on terrorism, but what’s your health care plan? Maybe we can work together on some social programs. After all, terrorism isn’t the only issue.

Susan Tyrrell at Lou Engle’s group Bound4Life made a similar claim today, saying that Christians who voted for pro-choice candidates are succumbing to the “spirit of the antichrist”:

Cut to the 2008 election season. As polls burgeoned nationwide on who was voting for whom and why, a recurring theme emerged: the economy. Voters said over and over that was their primary concern. Unfortunately, many Christian voters said this as well. It caused many to utter rationalizations such as “who I vote for won’t change abortion, but we need to help the poor. That’s what Jesus would do.” Actually so would the devil.

The devil actually feeds his business on helping the poor. This is the spirit driving the modern social justice movement that says we should help those less fortunate at all costs. The truth is, we should help those less fortunate—but only at the cost of the blood of Jesus. Not the blood of 54 million babies.

We have become worshipers of the god of riches. That’s the reason we have so much federal funding of Planned Parenthood, and why the latest recommendation for national health care includes a mandate for birth control coverage, including abortive birth control. If every person who called him or herself a Christian were standing against these issues vocally and publicly, there would be no debate. We are more in number than Planned Parenthood, NOW, Congress, the National Institutes of Health—all of them put together. The fact is, money is behind it all and since more pro-abortion policies have been in place since January 2009, we have watched our nation pursue the American dream of wealth in the name of practicality and security. We care more about our personal comfort than we do righteousness when we live this way. And that is the very spirit of the antichrist who uses this very method to find his worshipers.

Activists Want to Pass Anti-Gay Marriage Amendment to Stop Satan's Attack on Marriage

Ron Baity of Return America, the group behind the campaign to pass an amendment to North Carolina’s constitution that would ban same-sex marriage, which is already barred by statute, joined right-wing radio host Janet Parshall yesterday on her show In The Market. Parshall said that marriage equality efforts come from “the Father of Lies and the Accuser of the Brethren,” two names for Satan (John 8:44; Revelation 12:10). She said that Satan has marriage in his “crosshairs” because he wants “to tear down the idea of Christ’s unconditional love for us.”

Baity agreed with Parshall’s analysis and warned that government will be changed for the worse if same-sex marriage becomes legal. “I’m afraid defense is down in our country,” Baity went on to tell Parshall, “Rght now in our economy and everything else we’re experiencing in our nation I don’t think is anything less than God trying to get our attention”:

Parshall: But as a pastor do you ever stop and think, of course it makes sense that marriage is under attack. It’s the first institution that God created in a place of perfection, it’s emblematic of the love that Christ the bridegroom has for his bride, the Church, so if you were the Father of Lies and the Accuser of the Brethren, boy I tell you marriage would be in my crosshairs, I would go after that with every bit of energy I’ve got because I would want to tear down the idea of Christ’s unconditional love for us and what he’s done for us and that message is repeating in the model of marriage. So from a biblical vantage point doesn’t it make sense that marriage is under attack?

Baity: Absolutely, and it’s been well stated that as the home goes so goes the government. Because the home is the theater for the government and what happens there in that basic institution will eventually determine what happens in that next generation. You know to a great degree it will determine who sits in the Oval Office and who sits in the halls of Congress and in our local legislatures. Our forefathers would not recognize our nation today, we have moved so far. And you know I’m afraid defense is down in our country Janet and I’m afraid that we are right now in our economy and everything else we’re experiencing in our nation I don’t think is anything less than God trying to get our attention.

Farah: Marriage Equality Will "Plunge" America Into "The Moral Abyss Of Chaos And Barbarism"

Joseph Farah, the editor of WorldNetDaily, is out with yet another column attacking marriage equality for gay and lesbian couples, arguing that it will lead to the downfall of civilization. Farah, who once called for “literally, a break-up of the nation” because several states have legalized same-sex marriage, writes that marriage equality will inevitably lead to polygamy. Claims that same-sex marriage are not uncommon from the Right, Farah fears that if Republicans support the right of states under the Tenth Amendment to legalize same-sex marriage that they will ultimately introduce polygamy:

It took nearly 50 years for Utah to be admitted into the Union for this reason. And it was Republican Party opposition to polygamy that forced the action – just as it was Republican Party opposition to slavery that resulted in an end of that hideous institution in the United States.

Today we have even some Republicans in denial of history and in denial of the natural lusts of men throughout history.

Believe me, there is no legal or moral argument that can be made against polygamy if the institution of marriage is redefined as one between any two people. At that point, I would have to agree that marriage, as redefined, really would become discriminatory, since it is based on nothing more than judicial rulings and legislative actions by men.



Those who tell you that same-sex marriage is no big deal and won't lead to the further diminishment of the 6,000-year-old institution of marriage are either being disingenuous or are just plain ignorant.

Marriage is the most important cultural institution in any free and self-governing society.

If you want to plunge into the moral abyss of chaos and barbarism, then just cast your vote for same-sex marriage. Just pretend this profoundly faddish idea is only the latest breakthrough in "civil rights." Just don't raise your voice of objection to this bizarre idea being rammed down America's throat by those who have no appreciation for what really works in God's economy.

Bachmann: The American People Are Concerned About "The Rise Of The Soviet Union"

Michele Bachmann dropped by "Jay Sekulow Live" today to talk about her win last weekend in the Iowa Straw Poll and her presidential campaign in general.  During the discussion, Bachmann asserted that while the American people are very concerned about the state of the economy, they are concerned about other issues as well like abortion, defending marriage ... and the rise of the Soviet Union:

I would say it's a unified message. It really is about jobs and the economy. That doesn't mean people haven't [sic] forgotten about protecting life and marriage and the sanctity of the family. People are very concerned about that as well. But what people recognize is that there's a fear that the United States is in an unstoppable decline. They see the rise of China, the rise of India, the rise of the Soviet Union and our loss militarily going forward. And especially with this very bad debt ceiling bill, what we have done is given a favor to President Obama and the first thing he'll whack is five hundred billion out of the military defense at a time when we're fighting three wars. People recognize that.

Umm ... who exactly are these people that are concerned about the rise of the Soviet Union?  Because last time I checked, it went out of existence two decades ago.

Meet The Religious Right Extremists Behind The Pro-Bachmann Super PAC

A secretive ‘Super PAC’ tied to an Ohio political operative is planning to aid congresswoman Michele Bachmann’s presidential campaign after working to defeat South Carolina congressman John Spratt in the last midterm election. Chris Cillizza writes that “Citizens for a Working America, as the group is known, will be chaired by former Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell. Ed Brookover, a longtime political consultant and adviser to Bachmann, will be involved as will conservative lawyer and economist Marc Nuttle.”

Ken Blackwell’s ties to the Religious Right are well known, but Nuttle’s activism has flown below the radar.

Blackwell was Ohio’s Secretary of State from 2002-2006 whom after leaving office, unsuccessfully ran for governor in 2006 and chairman of the Republican National Committee in 2009. He is now a senior fellow with the ultraconservative Family Research Council, a senior fellow with the far-right American Civil Rights Union, and a board member the pro-corporate Club for Growth. Columbus-based televangelist Rod Parsley vigorously backed his failed gubernatorial campaign and Religious Right activists endorsed his abortive bid for RNC chair. His staunchly anti-gay views will serve him well in the Bachmann camp, as Blackwell once compared gay people with arsonists and kleptomaniacs and same-sex couples with farm animals.

Nuttle is a Republican adviser and economist with deep ties to an extreme movement within the Religious Right composed of advocates of Seven Mountains Dominionism. Nuttle is in fact Chairman of The Oak Initiative, a far-right organization dedicated to promoting the Seven Mountains ideology. The group claims in its mission statement, “The Oak Institute is being developed to raise up effective leaders for all of the dominant areas of influence in the culture, including: government, business, education, arts and entertainment, family services, media, and the church,” otherwise known as the Seven Mountains of society that Dominionists think should be controlled by fundamentalist Christians.

The Oak Initiative’s president Rick Joyner, the founder of MorningStar Ministries, has claimed that God is planning to destroy California and that God used Hurricane Katrina to punish America for tolerating homosexuality. The Oak Initiative’s board is filled with leading proponents of Seven Mountains Dominionism, including Jerry Boykin, Janet Porter, Lance Wallnau and self-proclaimed prophet Cindy Jacobs. Lou Sheldon, the head of the Traditional Values Coalition who described LGBT activism as “the very face of evil,” is also a board member.

Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council (Blackwell’s boss) and 2000 GOP presidential candidate Alan Keyes addressed the Oak Initiative’s 2011 Summit alongside Nuttle, where Perkins called gays and lesbians “hateful” people who are “pawns” of Satan and Keyes urged Congress to impeach President Obama before he seizes power with the help of foreign countries. At the Summit, Boykin said that Obama is creating his own Brownshirt army to usher in Marxism and Joyner suggested that a secretive cabal crashed the economy to help Obama win the presidential election.

Nuttle spoke to Joyner’s MorningStar Ministries on how to “apply proper biblical principles to the marketplace and the workforce” and that God “has a plan and a solution for this current world crisis we find ourselves in.” Nuttle said that people “don’t have to figure” out all the economic solutions, “all you have to do is be obedient” to God. He also claimed that the United States is the only country with a government subservient to God: “Every other government in the world is some sort of government authority, it’s a dictatorship, or Islam where government is God, or where the dictator is God, or the Constitution is God, over the constituents.” Nuttle argued that “the fight is against the 30% [of politicians] who don’t care” about the decline of the economy, “because then there’s more room for government. Government’s what they want, socialism is the goal.” He ended his speech by saying, “lock your shields with each other against the enemy.” 

Earlier this year he addressed Liberty University’s Awakening 2011, the Religious Right political event hosted by Mat Staver of the LU-affiliate Liberty Counsel. Nuttle also appeared on God Knows with Jacobs, where he shared with the 'Prophet' his plan to solve the nation’s debt troubles.

As heads of the pro-Bachmann Super PAC, Blackwell and Nuttle will surely help Bachmann link her far-right economic views with her deep-seated social conservative activism.

Merging Anti-Islam Activism With Prophetic Dominionism

Jerry Boykin and Frank Gaffney were among the lead authors of the right-wing "Team B II" report "Shariah: The Threat To America" which claims that the "Muslim Brotherhood in insinuating shariah into the very heartland of America through stealthy means."

Given their mutual hatred of Islam, it makes sense that Boykin and Gaffney have continued to work together in various capacities.  By the same token, given Boykin's deep ties to to "prophet" Rick Joyner and the Oak Initiative, it likewise makes sense that we'd eventually see a merging between the prophetic dominionism of Joyner with the anti-Islam advocacy of Gaffney ... which finally emerged yesterday on Gaffney's radio program:

Rev. Rick Joyner kicks off today’s program by introducing his efforts to unite and equip Christians through The Oak Initiative. Two years ago, Joyner hosted a three day seminar to bond the Christian Church together in a time of great crisis morally, spiritually and economically. In these times, “we need to know what we believe,” says Rev. Joyner who as President of the foundation seeks to educate Christians on the crucial issues of the day, including Islamic Extremism. Through the Initiative Christians are uniting across the spectrum, and standing firm against the “Chrislam” movement, that seeks to combine both religions. “We have a responsibility as Christian leaders to defend the truth,” he says as he adamantly rejects the notion that Allah is the same God of the Bible. And he is bold in his defense: “Our Jesus is not coming back to kill all Christians who do not submit to Islam.”

The fact that Gaffney calls Joyner "one of my personal heroes" and the two are vowing to work together to fight any bridge-building efforts between Islamic and Christian leaders means we can probably expect to see a lot more from this partnership in the future.

Santorum: Same-Sex Marriage Helped Destroy The Economy

Yesterday, Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum appeared on Today’s Issues on American Family Radio, along with the Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins and the American Family Association’s Tim Wildmon, to discuss the Ames Straw Poll. After celebrating his fourth place finish in the straw poll, Santorum told Perkins and Wildmon that marriage equality, or what he calls the “redefinition of marriage,” secular government and legal abortion are responsible for the country’s economic collapse and created “a society that’s broken”:

Santorum: Letting the family break down and in fact encouraging it and inciting more breakdown through this whole redefinition of marriage debate, and not supporting strong nuclear families and not supporting and standing up for the dignity of human life. Those lead to a society that’s broken.



If you think that we can be a society that kills our own, and that disregards the family and the important role it plays, and doesn’t teach moral values and the important role of faith in the public square, and then expect people to be good, decent and moral when they behave economically, if you look at the root cause of the economic problems that we’re dealing with on Wall Street and Main Street I might add, from 2008, they were huge moral failings. And you can’t say that we’re gonna take morality out of the public square, morality out of our schools, God out of our schools, and then expect people to behave decently in a country that requires, capitalism requires some strong modicum of moral consciousness if it’s gonna be successful.

The Company That Rick Perry Keeps: Jerry Boykin and Obama's Brownshirt Army

When Rick Perry was organizing his massive public prayer rally, we put in a lot of work chronicling the radical views of the activists with whom Perry was partnering. 

But there are others with ties to Perry who were not involved in this effort and therefore never made it on to our list ... people like Jerry Boykin who believes that George Soros and the Council on Foreign Relations worked to collapse the economy in order to help Barack Obama win the election and that passage of healthcare reform legislation is really just cover for Obama to establish a private Brownshirt army loyal only to him:

I vaguely recall having seen clips of Boykin talking about attending Gov. Perry's inauguration in January 2011 and have been trying to track it down for the last week or so but have been unable to find it.  But today I stumbled across a different video of remarks Boykin recently delivered at something called the Gideon Media & Arts Conference where he proudly asserted that he is intolerant while praising Rick Perry for being one of the few political leaders who are willing to stand up for Biblical truth and revealing that he met with Perry recently as part of a private meeting the Governor held in June with right-wing leaders: 

Understanding The "Apostle" In The New Apostolic Reformation

Last night, Rachel Maddow dedicated a segment of her program to discussing the New Apostolic Reformation and its ties to Rick Perry as well as a follow-up segment with Forrest Wilder, author of the excellent piece on NAR in The Texas Observer - also, if you watch carefully, you will recognize lots of our videos:

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

For all the recent talk about the New Apostolic Reformation, one of the issues that has largely gone uncovered is just what it means to be an  "apostle" within this movement.  I have recently been reading C. Peter Wagner's "Apostles Today: Biblical Government for Biblical Power" in which he helpfully sets out his definition:

An apostle is a Christian leader, gifted, taught, commissioned, and sent by God with the authority to establish the foundational government of the church within an assigned sphere of ministry by hearing what the Spirit is saying to the churches and by setting things in order accordingly for the growth and maturity of the church and for the extension of the kingdom of God.

Wagner also explains that there is no such thing as "self-appointed apostles" because all apostles are appointed by God.  But that creates a bit of a dilemma for those trying to determine who are actual apostles versus those who are false apostles and so Wagner offers a rather ingenious way to tell the difference:

God's decision to make an individual an apostle must be recognized and affirmed by real people. If someone says, “God has called me to be an apostle,” but no one else agrees, then I have to doubt whether that person has accurately heard from God.

Now, if that logic seems rather circular to you, Wagner also offers up a list of "12 characteristics that are displayed by many (if not most) apostles," though he is careful to explain that not all apostles have all 12 characteristics. 

But, as a basic rule of thumb, seeing Jesus, performing miracles, suffering persecution, casting out demons, and fighting witchcraft are among the characteristics that a NAR apostle might posses:

1. Seeing Jesus personally. Of course the original 12 saw Jesus, but so did Paul, when Jesus appeared to him on the Damascus Road, and as he indicated in 1 Corinthians 9:1: “Am I not an apostle? Am I not free? Have I not seen Jesus Christ our Lord?” According to an informal survey of the apostles whom I know today, about 20 percent have actually seen Jesus personally.

2. Performing supernatural manifestations such as signs and wonders. “Truly the signs of an apostle were accomplished among you with all perseverance, in signs and wonders and mighty deeds” (2 Cor. 12:12). Almost every apostle I know has seen physical healing in their ministry, but not many have seen mass healings through the casting of their shadow as did Peter (see Acts 5:15). The application of this, therefore, might well be mostly a matter of degree.

3. Planting churches. “According to the grace of God which was given to me, as a wise master builder I have laid the foundation and another builds on it” (1 Cor. 3:10). While planting churches is a very important apostolic characteristic (one that David Cannistraci even included in his definition above), not all apostles have a church-planting ministry.

4. Appointing and overseeing local church pastors (or “elders”). Paul and Barnabas planted churches, and then returned and “appointed elders in every church, and prayed with fasting” (Acts 14:23). Paul instructed Titus, a member of his apostolic team in Crete, to “set in order the things that are lacking, and appoint elders in every city” (Titus 1:5).

5. Settling disputes in the church. The Corinthian believers were at each other’s throats. Paul wrote, “Now I plead with you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you, that you be perfectly joined together in the same mind and the same judgment” (1 Cor. 1:10). Apostles are frequently called upon to bring resolution and unity to division.

6. Applying discipline, including excommunication. “It is actually reported that there is sexual immorality among you, and such sexual immorality as is not even named among the Gentiles—that a man has his father’s wife! … In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, when you are gathered together, along with my spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ, deliver such a one to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus” (1 Cor. 5:1,4-5). Denominational pastors are rarely equipped to take this kind of drastic action. Apostles, however, have few inhibitions about doing it when needed. Sadly, I have found it necessary through the years to dismiss or to force the resignation of several members of ICA.

7. Providing spiritual covering for other leaders. Paul did this. Here are two examples: “I commend to you Phoebe our sister, who is a servant of the church in Cenchrea, that you may receive her in the Lord in a manner worthy of the saints, and assist her in whatever business she has need of you” (Rom. 16:12). And, “Now if Timothy comes, see that he may be with you without fear; for he does the work of the Lord, as I also do. Therefore, let no one despise him. But send him on his journey in peace” (1 Cor. 16:10-11).

8. Suffering physical persecution. “For I consider that I am not at all inferior to the most eminent apostles … From the Jews five times I received forty stripes minus one. Three times I was beaten with rods; once I was stoned; three times I was shipwrecked; a night and a day I have been in the deep” (2 Cor. 11:5,24-25).

9. Attracting and distributing financial resources. “All who were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the proceeds of the things that were sold, and laid them at the apostles’ feet; and they distributed to each as anyone had need” (Acts 4:34-35). Most apostles have access to the financial resources necessary to implement the vision that God has given them.

10. Casting out demons. “So that even handkerchiefs or aprons were brought from [Paul’s] body to the sick, and the diseases left them and the evil spirits went out of them” (Acts 19:12). Not all apostles have deliverance ministries, though many do.

11. Breaking curses of witchcraft. Paul broke the spirit of divination (witchcraft) in Philippi (see Acts 16:1618) and directly confronted the occult sorcerer Elymas in Cyprus (see Acts 13:8-11).

12. Frequent fasting. As he displays his credentials as an apostle, Paul mentions that he fasted often (see 2 Cor. 11:27).

Robertson: Perry "Founded His Administration On The Bible"

Today on The 700 Club, Pat Robertson praised Texas Gov. Rick Perry for leading The Response prayer rally in Houston on Saturday. Perry did an interview with The 700 Club just days before the event to publicize it, disclosing that he would be praying against the “over-taxed, over-regulated, and over-litigated” economy. Robertson lauded Perry’s much disputed handling of Texas’s economy, arguing, “He has founded his administration on the Bible, and if I might add it works.” Robertson went on to say that Perry is trying to bring America “back to the roots of our nation” against forces that are trying to “separate this country from God.”

Watch:

Robertson: Is it any wonder that man was elected for three terms to lead one of the largest states in our nation, and if I might add a very prosperous states, a state that has low unemployment, paying the bills. He has founded his administration on the Bible, and if I might add it works. Man, it took courage for him to do this. All this ‘blurred the lines of separation of church and state,’ no it doesn’t. We had never, never had a time in our country where we separated this country from God, but it looks like we’re trying to do it as hard as we can. And I appreciate Gov. Perry, bringing that emphasis to come back to the roots of our nation.
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Miranda Blue, Friday 08/22/2014, 3:23pm
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