November 20, 2005
-- by Thomas Leavitt
I received the following in my inbox yesterday morning. It did not put me in a good mood.
Here's an excerpt:
"Queers and perverts will be able to marry and adopt children that will propagate the same mentally ill lifestyles. What ever happened to common sense?"
Oh yeah, this guy's "ministry" accepts tax-deductible donations to spread this crap - in prisons. Freakin' wonderful (not).
My comments follow the full text of his letter (below, below "the fold").
LETTER TO IRAQI PATRIOTS
By Rick Mathes
Please accept the god we trust in and you too will share in these advantages of our culture:
- Eliminating God from government and replacing Him with any god you may choose will conform to our “In any gods we trust” motto.
- M.D.’s (murdering doctors) will kill your unwanted babies as they struggle to wiggle their way into the arms of parents that don’t want them.
- The aged, disabled and unproductive will be given the option of a dignified death by the same M.D.’s that have said an oath of preserving life.
- Queers and perverts will be able to marry and adopt children that will propagate the same mentally ill lifestyles. What ever happened to common sense?
- Weekend marriages (married on Fri and divorced on Mon) will become the new rage.
- Legalizing prostitution will eliminate the curse of immorality and adultery.
- The underprivileged minorities will gamble their last dinar and the ruling class will pay fewer taxes because of their squandering of money and addiction to chance.
- We will install our “dumbing-down” Department of Education so that the elite will continue to have control and authority over lower class repressed students.
- Pornography will be very available in every form on the pretence that this will prevent “acting out” acts of sexual offences.
- Our new enemy interrogation methods will be photographed and published uncut at a wonderful profit that will help the salary needs of “mentally sick” army personnel.
- Our capitalistic corporate leaders will teach you how to rip off millions from fellow citizens and only have small and insignificant penalties to pay without complete restitution.
- We will export our profitable prison industry as we have become the number one nation in the world expanding industry profits from incarcerating the most number of prisoners.
- And we will show you how you too can merchandise “Kentucky Fried Christianity” as we have so that you too will never have to be accountable to God for the 10 Commandments our country was founded on.
Judge Roy Moore told me that the question our country needs to resolve is,
“Can the State acknowledge God?”
Upon that answer, our future as a nation “under God” rests.
We the ungodly people of Amerika do strongly encourage you to accept our superior culture or we will blow your country to dust, except the oil fields of course!
The Godless people of Amerika
Point one: this guy's criticism of the country is remarkably similar to that of Osama Bin Ladin.
Point two: My initial reaction.... this guy can go bleep himself.
Point three: There's potential here, I think (outside of the wedge social issues), for a "populist" approach that unites us under the banner of resistance to domination by an amoral materialist elite intent on commercializing every last square inch of our culture and lives, destroying the planet and twisting the psyche of the people inhabiting it.*
The right has been bleeping these people over for fourty years, promising and failing to deliever on the social issues, and simultaneously destroying their standard of living and poisoning the culture with a purely materialistic ethos of consumption, consumption, consumption. Not very "Christian", and something guaranteed to create anomie and despair among a population of youth unable to live up to the standards set by Snoop Dogg, Britney Spears, and their ilk. Someone needs to say "The Emperor has no clothes."
That person also needs to say, "Look - you can have a token commitment toa limited set of your social issues from the right (with little or no real results), and continue to see your standard of living, and that of your children, degraded - or you can accept that you're not going to win on a certain set of social issues, ally yourselves with us, and give your children a fighting chance for a decent quality of life, yourself a chance at a reasonably secure retirement, and we'll work with you on figuring out how we can jointly mold the culture into something less crassly commercial and materialistic.
Your children's real problems aren't queers and abortion: they are drug and alcohol abuse, underfunded schools that leave them unequipped to compete with highly educated Chinese and Indian workers getting paid $3.00 an hour, and a culture of conspicous consuption with a purely materialistic ethos that says anything goes, as long as you can afford it, and that says everything should be handed to them on a silver plate with no effort, and if it isn't, then they're a failure. Your kids aren't likely to ever be able to live like Britney Spears and Snoppy Doggy Dog (especially on $7.00 an hour), but every piece of media they are exposed to says they should. That's your choice: what's more important to you... your children's future (and your retirement), or queers and abortion?"
That's awkwardly phrased, but you get the point: the right has a formula that has worked for them for years... the left, prior to its current incarnation, also had a formula - basic social and economic populism. Let's use it: focus on the real issues, the meat and potatoes of politics, on the constituent's doorsteps, in their faces every day. Rant on about how the titans of industry have corrupted the culture, exploited the people, destroyed our standard of living, and exported jobs and hope overseas. People in Britain are already migrating to India for decent jobs... what does that say about their future job prospects here?
By the way... I'm listening to Pearl Jam: No Code ... right, it is "Who You Are". I picked it up out of a box of junk that someone left out by the dumpster at my office complex (mostly empty CD Jewel Cases). Also got a Cranberries album. I didn't like it at first, but it is growing on me...
* I was going to go into a long rant about how this guy, and all the folks like him, can go bleep themselves, and how impossible it is for a society to accomodate such widely divergent points of view, and how he and his wingnut Jesus freak friends can go off to some alternately freakishly cold and insanely hot and humid hellhole in the Midwest and fight amongst themselves all they want over whether dancing is a sin and alcohol can be sold on Sunday (or at all), just as long as they leave me and California out of their crazed battles. But, I decided not to.
Told you I was in a bad mood...
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I'm in a bad mood too, over pretty much the same issues you are, and I wonder if this mood isn't hitting the entire country -- at last! Even this Jesus freak is beginning to catch on, although still clinging to the hate messages and wedge issues. I agree that there's potential here -- to be used carefully.
Since the administration is gonna scream "traitor" at us, isn't it time to have the guts to start framing the truth about who the real "traitors" really are?
Posted by: MJ at November 21, 2005 5:34 AM
Tried to trackback and got "403 Throttled" (why?) So I'm putting it in a comment.
Wow, if you're looking for a bit of proto-fascist right-wing populism, here it is. OK, I doubt that you were, but there it is anyway. Thomas Leavitt of Seeing the Forest goes off on a rant about the thing, but I gotta caution him. If he thinks there's any room for cooperation because of the populist themes, I got bad news. Hell, no, there isn't. No way, no how.
It's titled "Letter to Iraqi Patriots" and I'll quote just some of the bullet points included. Go read the entire thing. It's text book.
Posted by: Dr. Laniac at November 21, 2005 9:06 AM
You can't work with them. You can try to convince those who might be open to their message that yours is the better one, but cooperating with the extreme right is a dangerous and foolish game. Their goals are completely at odds with yours. They may oppose some of the same things, but their approach is repressive and scapegoating.
They know how they feel about us. We would be the first targets if they ever got their way. Working with them would be a cynical sellout of principle for political victory. And the "victory" would be short-lived and phyrric.
Posted by: Dr. Laniac at November 21, 2005 9:12 AM
...I'm not saying I'd "work with them", or even deign to stand in the same room with 'em... not that they'd want to work with or stand in the same room with a bi/poly/heretical Gnostic Christian... but at the same time, if we can peel off their votes, without compromising principles, it'd be a real kick in the balls for the Republican Party.
Posted by: Thomas Leavitt at November 21, 2005 2:39 PM
Fair enough. Perhaps I was unclear on your intentions, but "unites us under a banner of resistance to domination by an ..." made me think you had the emailer as part of that coalition. His intended audience, perhaps. But people like the guy that wrote that letter are in the "purdy near lost cause" category.
I'm all for populism, as long as it's honest and progressive. Peeling off their votes is the right idea -- competing with jerks like the emailer.
Posted by: Dr. Laniac at November 21, 2005 2:57 PM
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