Sunday, February 10, 2008


"I know the pundits, and I know what they say: The math doesn't work out," Huckabee said Saturday morning at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington. "Well, I didn't major in math; I majored in miracles. And I still believe in those, too."

I didn't major in math, I majored in miracles... Yeah, any wonder why Huckabee won in Kansas? The state is the headquarters for bugshit, raving religious lunacy. Let me tell you something, if Huckabee resonates with the iron-age conservatives of Kansas - land of faith based public education, cousin lovin' 14-year old mothers, and science denial - then I'm going to go out on a limb here and say his viewpoints are probably 180 degrees out from mine.

I can see the cabinet meetings now:
Haggerty: "President Huckabee! President Huckabee!"
The Huckster: "Yes, Bishop of Tithe and Finance?"
Haggerty: "The economy is in the crapper! The New Crusades are bleeding us dry! The math shows 10 trillion in deficit! What are we going to do? It'll take a miracle. "
The Huckster: "Hey, what luck! I majored in miracles! I'll get right on it!"
Falwell Jr: "President Huckabee!"
The Huckster:"Yes, Minister of Theology Science?
Falwell Jr: "We've sent the terrorist evilutionists to Gitmo, just as you commanded. We've been teaching the holy creationism, but for some reason we just can't make the 6000 year-old age of the Earth line up with the rest of the math!"
The Huckster: "As I may have mentioned, I didn't major in math. Send the mathamagicians to join the biologists at Gitmo. Oh, and round up all the calculators, we'll torch them at the next National Book Burning day! "
Swaggart: "Mr President!"
The Huckster: "What is it Reverend of Faith Healing and Health?"
Swaggart: "Since we banned birth control and sex education the number of children having children has quadzoopled!"
The Huckster: "Quadzoomered what now? I may have mentioned that I don't care for all those mathy words."
Swaggart: "Hey, I didn't major in math either, but we're going to need a miracle here and I figured you're the expert!"
The Huckster: "That's me, Mr. Miracles. I'll think about it. What's next?"
Schuller: "Little divine help over here too, Mr President!"
The Huckster: "How so, Potentate of Defense and Crusading?"
Schuller: "Well, we miscalculated the number of troops we needed to passi...er, liberate the Holy Land."
The Huckster: "Right, right. Got it. You need a miracle."
Schuller: "Well, more than one I'm thinking..."
The Huckster: "Crap, how many exactly?"
Schuller: "I dunno, like a couple maybe? I mean, I suck at math too, unless it involves counting donations in the collection plate..."
(the cabinet cracks up)
Graham: "Heh, heh, well, we've gotten at least one miracle. All the Democrats have moved to Canada..."
All: "Hallelujah!"


  1. Thanks, Jim, I needed that.

    I've taken to shouting at the TV whenever I see Huckleberry get on screen. Usually it's something along the lines of "Bat-shit crazy lunatic" or something less specific.

    GW played with the religious thing, buck Huckster the Great has swallowed the Kool-Aid.

  2. Mmm... I think Huckwhatever made the kool-aid rather than swallowed it.

    He saw what GWB was able to do to with religion and decided to take it one step further.

  3. Heh, creepy and funny at the same time. Very nice, Jim.

  4. The thing with Huckabee, is he seems to be serious in a way that Bush probably isn't. For all of Bush's religious posturing, the Office Of Faith-Based Initiatives has been yet another of Bush's unfunded mandates. It exists, but it's largely ignored within the White House.

    By all the accounts I've seen, the Huckabees are religious in a way that would be sort of commendable if they were your kooky next-door neighbors and not a couple whose husband is running for the nation's highest elected office. After Katrina, for instance, the Huckabees were praised for their response to refugees entering the state. Of course, you can also note that the Huckabees seem to have had a somewhat... slack attitude when it came to... the perks of being governor--it seems the Huckabee administration was a bit corrupt, what with the way his campaign handled funds, his wife's bid for Arkansas Secretary Of State and the mingling of funds, the "wedding" gift registry when they renewed their vows, etc.

    I don't think I'd mind the Huckabees as neighbors. I'd politely decline when they invited to me to church (which they would, frequently), accept when they had barbecues (which they would, frequently), and tactfully ignore all the office supplies they'd bring home from work (ditto). Janet Huckabee would have hilarious stories about bear-trapping and skydiving, and Mike and I would sometimes hang out in the back room jamming and drinking sodas. They would be good people to make sure your pets got fed when you were going to be out of town for a bit and they'd be the kind of people you'd leave a spare key with.

    But he's a craptacular candidate for national office. Or even statewide office. Or even county commission. He's a nice guy, but he's a nice guy who doesn't understand the Constitution or the ethical responsibilities of elected office. And ironically, that makes him worse that GWB at some level, because GWB is at least making cynical political calculations and working off of a radical constitutional theory (the unitary executive); Huckabee simply doesn't know any better. GWB's road to Hell has signs and a road map. Huckabee's is paved with good intentions.

  5. Eric, I'm afraid I agree with you. In my mind, Huck is more dangerous because he's so very, very sincere.


    Nice funny, Jim.

  6. I'm a Baptist, so I don't find this so very funny. ;-)

    I see the humor in Jim's post, of course, but my reaction is along the lines of Janiece's over the Berkely flap. If I don't clean up the messes of the fringe on my side, I can't attack the fringe on the other side.

    Eric, I have to disagree strongly with you one some things. But first, I agree these people would be charming neighbors. But they are not strong Christians, and I'd be wary of trusting them very far. Oh, sure it would be perfectly safe to leave your key with them, because they'd want something from you in the future. I'd think twice before loaning them my power tools, though. They jump on hot button topics like Evolution, while conveniently foregtting a few of the commandments. While I'm apt to overlook such failings in run-of-the-mill Christians, I hold ministers to a higher standard - as should they hold themselves to a stricter code.

    Such creatures are common in the leadership of the Evangelical movement becuase a lot of rank-and-file Evangelicals are extremely naive when it comes to men of the cloth. I've observed how weasels in collars take advantage of this first hand - we had to toss a minister out of our church when I was a kid for such pilferage, and there were still some nice old ladies who could never think ill of the man. (That was an interesting dynamic to watch, because my family were the only white folks in the congregation for 18 years - someday I'm going to write a blog post on the differences between religious huckstertism in the white and black communities).

    It's been my observation that Evangelical ministers, especially Baptists, who go into entertainment, politics or TV evangelism are almost always wolves in sheeps' clothing - Billy Graham, Jim Bakker, Jimmy Swagart, Jesica Simpson's father, etc. In the words of John the Baptist "He must increase, I must decrease". You can't be constantly platering your face on TV and live by that precept.

  7. John, I have to be honest - Evangelicals scare me. The whole movement scares me.

    And especially the leaders of the movement, as you said they almost to a person seem so transparently dishonest, and yet so many evangelicals seem to support them whole heartedly and are in self denial about the leaders of their movement. It seems to me that many evangelicals are willing to put up the hypocrisy so many of these leaders display in order to advance their own cause. And I find that incredibly disturbing.

    I don't like Huckabee at all, I think he is a slick, smooth tent preacher with one hand in the donation plate and the other up the skirt of his parishioners. I would emphatically not want him for a neighbor.

    Though I do agree with Eric's assessment that he seems more serious in his beliefs than Bush does - and I don't know which I find more distasteful, Bush's obvious manipulation of the religious right for his own ends, or Huckabee's smug self-righteousness.

  8. I'm not sure what he believes, Jim. As a Christian, It's really none of my business, but as a voter it is. One of the best sermons I ever heard was about the coin and "Render unto Ceasar what is Caesar's, unto God what is God's". The preacher then challenged us to define exactly what is God's and what is Caesar's. Everyone has a different definition. And He was vague on the distinction in order to make you uneasy every time you have to make a decision based on that passage. But having your hand in the till is definitely not rendering unto Caesar, esecially in a system where Caesar is your fellow countrymen.

  9. Jim, here are some Evangelicals you could at least have a civil conversatoin with.

  10. John,

    I try to be careful not to stereotype people, including evangelicals. But I will admit that I am uncomfortable around deeply religious people - often because I feel that I'm being judged in accordance with their standards, and that pisses me off - I never agreed to live by those rules. Some of this may be projection on my part, but much of it is based on things evangelicals have bluntly said to me.

    Now, I will admit to being a fairly thorny character and I can be confrontational at times. But I don't go looking for it - in fact I very much go out of my way to avoid confrontation, but if I am backed into a corner, and people demand to know what I believe in, then I'm not going to lie about it. And that's when things start to come unpleasant, especially with evangelicals - or at least the ones I've been exposed to. They seem to feel that it's ok for me to tolerate their beliefs, but they rarely return the favor. They seem to take me as some type of personal challenge. As if I'm deluded and if they pester me enough I'll just give in and change what I believe in. In my experience, evangelicals demand freedom to believe what they want, but refuse others that same right. I've met many outside an abortion clinic, or an evolution debate, and etc. I happen to know a number, and when they think it's just them in the room - the casual anti-semitic, anti-gay, anti-muslim, anti-atheist, anti-everybody else rhetoric is appalling.

    Again, this is my experience, and I understand that all, maybe not even a majority, are this way. However, I see many evangelicals at school board meetings who, in my opinion, are raving intolerant nut jobs. Evangelicals have destroyed the Boy Scouts of America - it has become the Christian Crusaders. Again in my experience.

    And as you obliquely pointed out - yeah, I'm basing my opinion of Huckabee's beliefs on my own perception and not on verifiable fact. However, I feel myself on fairly safe ground here. Some times past performance is an indicator of future returns. And Huckabee has made a huge deal out of his evangelical background, and so have his most vehement supporters. He's made no bones about the type of administration he has in mind, and it's a vision of America that I want no part of.

  11. Jim - I'm not disagreeing with you. Not all Baptists are Evangelicals, and I'm not one. I'm extremely uncomfortabnle around people who can not have a single conversation without mentioning their faith. It ought to come through in your actions and opinions, without the need to vocalize. In my detailed experience with such people, there is a mental deficiency there, almost a mental illness. An inability to think for oneself, at least in many spheres of intellectual endeavor.

    But YMMV. I'm an apostate monkey-lovin' Evolutionist in their eyes.

    I have a moral system I call Shit Hit the Fan Morality - how much I tolerate your beliefs is how much value I'd think you'd bring to a post-apocalyptic scenario. Would you be a contributing member of society if all the technology we enjoy were stripped away? Because it may be at some future date (that's the SF fan in me). The fringe on both the left and the right fail in this litmus test.

  12. "Again, this is my experience, and I understand that all, maybe not even a majority, are this way."

    I disagree. I think the center of that bell curve is an ugly place to be.

  13. I shared an office for a year or so with an evangelical Baptist. He didn't try to convert me and seemed pretty impressed with my self-developed morals. I liked him very much and appreciated that he generally tried to be non-judgemental (particularly about gays). I did not understand, however, why, when it came to anything church or government related, he pretty much turned into a bobble-head doll.

    It's easy to feel judged by the hyper-devout. I've been on the other side of the coin in two ways. I used to go to church (Mennonite) regularly for two reasons: curiosity and to see my uncle. A guy I was dating thought I was too goody-goody. He tried to come back after I got a tattoo, but it was to late for him, (muahahaha). Also, I've had an experience with an (overly sensitive?) coworker objecting because she thought I was judging her everytime I said something like "reality shows are a waste of space" or "hmm, the plan of that apartment is inefficient."
    Not saying you're overly sensitive, Jim, but churchy folks (or just those with high expectations of themselves [points to self]) may not be judging you. As John said, they probably are, but there are a few that aren't. ;)

  14. I disagree. I think the center of that bell curve is an ugly place to be

    Well, ok, I was trying to be polite and open minded. Sheesh. Honestly though, my experience with evangelicals has been almost uniformly negative. I've found that I cannot be in their presence for long before they start in on me. If I'm polite and say, nope sorry don't want to discuss your beliefs, they take it as open season and a challenge. However, I seem to attract people like this, so I was assuming that maybe my sampling method was biased towards the asstard end of the overall testing pool.

    But secretly, yeah, as a group I suspect they are all the same.

  15. Anne, I agree that I'm somewhat sensitive to the subject.

    With my background, concepts such as honor, moral courage, duty and etc mean a great deal to me. I taught leadership and wrote about military leadership for many years - and have been told on more than one occasion that I can not possibly understand ethics, morals, duty, courage, honor, decency, and etc because I am not a Christian. This pisses me off. Pisses. Me. Off. Instantly. These people seem to think that everybody is some kind of gay loving, child molesting, drug smoking, adulterer underneath (yeah, yeah, I get the whole sinful sinning sinner bit - I just don't buy it), and if it weren't for evangelical Christianity we'd all be running about like wolves. Sorry, not buying it. I am who I am because I chose to be this way, not because I'm afraid of going to hell.

  16. John, I missed your first comment.

    I think you and I would get along famously. I tend to have the same worth-o-meter, i.e. if civilization falls tomorrow, would I let you in the shelter? (Don't worry, Nathan, I value humor in the lifeboat as absolutely essential).

    And I tend to believe that extreme religious beliefs boarder on mental illness - and I say this because in my experience many deeply deeply religious folks I've met have eventually gone off the deep end (two institutionalized, three suicides). I'm not saying that I think belief is a mental illness, only that extreme cases of it are, so don't everybody get all weirded out on me here.

  17. OK, un-Christian-like language to follow:

    Mother fucker does anyone else have my dyslexic typing style and wind up at ____.blogpsot.com all the time?

    People like that piss me the hell off.

  18. John, I have no idea what's gotten you going there. Please, elaborate for the slow folks, like me :)

  19. John, nevermind upon further review I see the crux of your statement.

    And for the record, yeah, me too.

  20. Some religious nutcase acquired a domain that is a common mis-typing of blogspot.com: "blogpsot.com". If you mis-type that final domain name into your URL line, you get a faceful of religious lunacy, pop-ups out the wazoo if you don't have a blocker, and tons of ads. This is not good internet etiquette, and it eminently qualifies as being a dick. If you can read the New Testament and come away without the general overall commandment to try not to be a dick, then there's something wrong with your reading of the New Testament.

  21. Hey, I wasn't following this thread and now I find out there's a fucking lifeboat? You guys have gotta tell people when the important shit happens.

    I can cook too!

  22. Nathan, don't worry, when it come time to launch the boat, I'll gather up the selected (which I keep on a secret list).

  23. Something else to make your head all 'splodey. And it's from Clinton's spiritual advisor. WTF? Did no one in a major theological seminary take a science calss? What ever happened to they days when men of the cloth were also scientists? Copernicus ring a bell?


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