30 Jan
2014

The Grammy Awards are Demonic, man.

Katy Perry involved in totally legit demonic ritual.

Katy Perry involved in totally legit demonic ritual.

It’s 3:47 AM on a Thursday morning. I’ve been battling a cold this week. I’m on the mend, but this cold almost seems demonic. See what I did there? The demonic is on my mind this morning. In the wake of the recent Grammy award ceremony, a lot of people have been talking about all the demons they saw running amok. Yeah. At the Grammy’s.

Many Christians I know have their spiritual spider senses tingling about what they saw that night. As a doubter, as a possible hell-bound apostate, I find this state of affairs to be pretty damn queer. It’s really weird, man. It’s sad. It’s just sad what some people are willing to call demonic. Katy Perry dressed up like some kind of priestess is surely demonic and evil. Beyonce getting all sensual with Jay-Z will damn souls to Hell. There is no doubt about that. We’re seeing legit evil folks.

Are we? Are we really? I want you to do me a favor. I want you to close your eyes and I want you to imagine what a Hellfire missile does to a human body. I want you to meditate on that for a good minute or so. Oh, did I mention that the body being obliterated by a Hellfire missile belongs to a child in Pakistan? You could also think about the millions of people who are hurting after they lost their unemployment benefits. Think of their loss of dignity. Think of their desperation. I want you to think of the children who are born to single mothers who are almost guaranteed to be chewed up, neglected, rejected, incarcerated and demonized by our society. All of these things are grave evils. I don’t have to appeal to witches or devils or magick spells to call them evils.

Grow up. Denounce actual evil. Challenge yourself to care about the world you live in. Discard this make believe nonsense about witches, demons and the Illuminati.

 

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6 May
2013

Mark Driscoll: I Can’t Wait Til The World is Destroyed

mark driscoll

The destruction of the natural world is absolutely hilarious and so is my haircut in this picture.

Mark Driscoll bugs me. I try not to hate anyone but he makes it really hard. It’s tempting to get incredibly nasty. It’s tempting to just pull out the weaponized ad hominems on this guy. I can hear people saying I should just stop paying attention to this guy. I’d love to and I would if he weren’t so influential. Mark Driscoll undeniably has quite an impact on how a large swath of the population lives their lives. This should concern everyone who is even the least bit sane because he says things like this,

I know who made the environment and he’s coming back and going to burn it all up. So yes, I drive an SUV.

 

Yeah. Forget any harm done to the natural environment by human activity because Jesus is going to come back and destroy it all with fire. Forget the fact that we don’t have a spaceship that we can fly to Vulcan or some place because Jesus is going to destroy it all with fire some day. I will refrain from countering the theology of Mark Driscoll with some more environmentally correct theology because I’m not sure I wouldn’t just be making things up. I would have no way to say my theology is more correct than Driscoll’s theology. That’s what burns me about theology lately. I can’t escape the idea that people are just making up their own game so I shall not formulate my own competing theology. However, there is no denying that theology has consequences. Know what’s really creepy? Mark Driscoll didn’t say anything about a new creation rising from the ashes. He fixates on destruction. That’s what his god is. It’s a god of anger, wrath and destruction and one especially concerned about whether you’re looking at pornography or whether you’re sufficiently manly. Seems like God as interpreted by Mark Driscoll is a lot like Mark Driscoll. That’s just a coincidence though.

I recall all of the times I’ve heard Christians denounce the fatalism and the nihilism of radical Islam. They lament the fact that radical Muslims love death and Christians love life. What is this theology of Mark Driscoll’s if not a love of death? Isn’t it just as fatalistic and nihilistic? The only real difference seems to be that a Muslim suicide bomber kills a lot faster. It’s perverse. Mark Driscoll is so focused on the world to come that he’s checked out of the world that we have now. He cheapens the life that we have now.

I know it makes me a bad person but I’m hoping for a major scandal to rock his ministry so then maybe his influence will be drastically reduced. I know that’s a tad mean but so is treating the destruction of the natural world with such glee.

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2 May
2013

God Cares.. About Your Facebook Account?

One of the reasons I find Christianity so relevant these days is men like Tim Conway who use their pulpit to talk strongly about a subject that matters so very much.

No. One of the reasons Christianity seems more and more lame these days is men like Tim Conway who take their divinity degrees and theologize about the petty as if it isn’t petty. Facebook? In a world of corruption, casual brutality and savage inequality, Tim Conway rails on about Facebook. Don’t have dirty words on your Facebook. Don’t be friends with people who use dirty words on Facebook.

Tim Conway

“If your Facebook account gives you scandal then pluck your eye out. Oh wait…”

Maybe it’s just my corrupt, carnal nature leading me around by the nose here but it’s almost as if all this comes down to trying your best not to be interesting.  It’s about putting a filter on one’s life. Does appearing pure and beyond any sort of reproach really make you pure and beyond reproach? That’s what irks me about many of my interactions with committed evangelicals. The dark, the ugly, the profane in a person is hidden from me. It’s a forced disingenuity and to me that’s a whole lot uglier than a cynical status update, an off color joke or some profanity.

What’s holy about appearing as if you are a character in a 1950s sitcom? It seems so queer to me that thousands of years after the work of a dark skinned, poor preacher who sometimes had a thing for apocalyptic rants that this is what guys like Tim Conway take away from all of that.

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1 May
2013

Fox News Hates You

Fox News

Kill anything that’s brown because America.

I’m not going to pretend Fox News is the end and the beginning of the problem with the news media. People like to bitch about the media being biased against liberals or against conservatives. It’s May Day and I think it’s important to remember that the media is actually biased against YOU. If you aren’t a CEO then the media doesn’t care about you or your plight. It is intended to reflect reality as interpreted by the monied political class. That’s not the point though. Let me begin again but do chew on that. Chew on it hard.

Fox News hates you. It’s showing that it hates you by appealing to your worst instincts. It’s tickling that reptilian part of your brain. It’s very easy to do. Fox News got out the tickle feather this past Monday when Megyn Kelly got her authoritarian panties in a bunch over a speech by Attorney General Eric Holder on the Boston Marathon bombings. He assured the audience that the Justice Department would do everything it could to prosecute the perpetrators of the attack to the fullest extent of the law and then he spent a lot of time talking about the need not to scapegoat Muslims or those that appeared to be Muslim. Megyn Kelly took great exception to the Justice Department prosecuting the perpetrators of the attack because the free market might be able to handle that better than the government. I kid but give her time. No. Her and Michelle Malkin were horrified that our neo-communist Attorney General was concerned with coddling the feelings of Muslims when he should be declaring people who overdid it with their last tanning session as enemy combatants just to be on the safe side. It’s not like xenophobia is part of the American heritage or anything or that crimes against Muslims spiked after 9/11.

It seems like Fox News is nostalgic for the carnival of fear that was the atmosphere in this country post 9/11. They are trying to recapture those glory days but it’s really hard since the attack didn’t kill thousands of people. Fox News knows their audience. They know their audience digs us versus them. They know their audience is into worrying about foreigners who just won’t assimilate. They know that their audience is mad as hell about our Attorney General who works for a secret Muslim coddling the feelings of Muslims who live here but desire to destroy us from within and make Megyn Kelly wear a hijab. Fox News is exploiting the worst in human nature in order to increase their ratings and thus sell more advertising. If that doesn’t say that they hate you then I honestly don’t know what the hell does.

There is also something worth mentioning that Megyn Kelly didn’t bother to reflect on too much. Eric Holder knew his audience too. The speech in question was given to the Anti-Defamation League which is likely why the theme of the speech focused so much on not scapegoating Muslims since fighting against scapegoating is the entire reason the Anti-Defamation League exists just like scaring the shit out of middle America for money is why Fox News exists.

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30 Apr
2013

Jason Collins and Facebook Homophobia

 

jason collins

Jason Collins of the Washington Wizards is gay. I don’t follow the NBA. The last time I paid any attention was grade school. My understanding is the guy isn’t exactly Wilt Chamberlain. That isn’t the point. I have quite a few committed evangelical Christians as friends on Facebook. I went to high school with most of them. I was once a committed evangelical and now I’m not so sure and that uncertainty is something that I live with every single day. I must say that the reaction of some of my Facebook friends and acquaintances to the revelation by Jason Collins leaves me with quite a bit in the way of unease. I observed many people minimizing the impact of the announcement. I’ll leave the question of impact to the sports historians. Most of what I saw can be summed up in the following statement,

“There are things that should remain private. This is one of them.”

Uh. Let me think about that for a second or so. No. That’s nonsense. If this is about keeping matters related to sex private than evangelicals really shouldn’t be talking. The culture surrounding the peculiar brand of Christianity we have in America is soaked in sex. Some Christians are very fond of confessing in graphic detail their struggles with pornography. I swear that there are times when Christians are more concerned with pornography than the people that are involved in producing and selling it. What about all the explicit sermon series about sex preached by walking, talking Ken dolls like Ed Young? I know the birth control methods used by some people because they either told me or they announced it on Facebook.  I’ve heard youth pastors brag before congregations of horny teenagers how much they enjoy banging their dime piece of a wife. Why is that okay? It isn’t about keeping matters related to sexuality private. It’s all about the type of sex. The wrong type of sex has to be hidden. You can’t have people confronting the reality that a man is a homosexual, is relatively well adjusted, isn’t addicted to drugs and isn’t dying of AIDs. It has to stay private because if there is too much of a human face on homosexuality then people might start questioning the letter of the law. The avoidance of cognitive dissonance is why it has to stay private. It doesn’t have a damn thing to do with decency.

Speaking of things staying private. There was this guy.

jason collins

THIS GUY

Evangelicals had orgasms over Tim Tebow despite the words of Matthew 6:5,

“And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full.”

If you’re a committed evangelical then please understand that I’m not trying to insult you or belittle you. I do however want you to pause and think about the reasons for some of the reactions to this event in your community. I’m not asking you to change your convictions. I’m not asking you to embrace Jason Collins or to tattoo the likeness of Jason Collins somewhere on your body. I’m simply asking you to think and to be honest in the thinking that you do.

 

 

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29 Apr
2013

Conspiracy Theories and Crisis Actors

conspiracy theories

Conspiracy theories have gotten sadder and more pathetic in recent years. I can’t even believe that this is possible but it is. It would seem at this point that every time there is an incident that involves blood, terror and death that gets lots of media attention that people who live in mortal fear of GMOs, fluoridated water, vaccines and chem trails trot out accusations that the government staged the event using crisis actors. What are crisis actors? Crisis actors are something real and not at all sinister. They are actors that are used in disaster drills in order to make them as realistic as possible. Mike “I Make Shit Up” “The Health Ranger” Adams recently published an article on Natural News reporting that the government admits that they use crisis actors in disaster drills as if this is some sort of big deal.

These accusations are distasteful and wrong. They victimize victims of national tragedies even further by impugning their character. Recall the vile character assassination of Robbie Parker who lost his daughter in the Newtown, Connecticut massacre and was accused of being an actor based on his laughing before a news conference. Recall the recent case of Jeff Bauman who lost both of his legs in the Boston bombings and was accused of being a crisis actor due to his resemblance to a disabled veteran by the name of Nick Vogt who got his legs torn off by an IED in Afghanistan. These accusations are ridiculous in addition to being distasteful but since they are quickly becoming a common trope in conspiracy theories, they deserve the attention of skeptics.

Questions to ask believers in this bullshit theory

  • If The Powers That Be are indeed using crisis actors to stage spectacular events then why would they use people who can so easily be identified as actors?
  • Why would people agree to take part in such a charade? Really think about it. What would take it for you to participate in such a charade?
  • Presumably there are people who know Robbie Parker or Jeff Bauman and know that they are indeed real people and not actors. Are the people who claim to know these people also actors? What about the people that know those people?
  • If actors are being used then presumably there would be people that would know the actors. Why haven’t we heard from those people? Are The Powers That Be going around and eliminating everyone that could expose the actors?

I think that if these claims are scrutinized honestly then the conspiracy theories necessarily fall apart. Am I wrong? Is there something I’m missing that gives credence to these conspiracy theories?

 

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26 Apr
2013

The Sayings of PMD, Chapter Two

  1. the_thinkerIf every human being dropped dead tomorrow, never forget that the sun would still rise. This planet and all the others would continue to orbit the sun. You don’t matter as much as you think you might or as much as you’ve been led to believe you might. Don’t despair in this. Rejoice. The pressure is off. Revel in it. You’re free.
  2. You may not be Luke Skywalker or Odysseus or anyone else going through some sort of epic, heroic cycle. The universe may go on no matter what happens to you but never forget that what you do to your fellow human beings matters.
  3. Love others more than whatever momentary concept of a deity you possess.
  4. Your brain seeks patterns. Never forget that it can find patterns where none exist.
  5. It is said that only Sith deal in absolutes. So do idiots.
  6. Sometimes people are responsible for their own troubles. This fact does not disqualify them from compassion.
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25 Apr
2013

Ann Coulter Gets Her Xenophobia On

ann coulter

Ann Coulter has made herself quite the lucrative career being a right wing entertainer. She says things that are politically incorrect because they are politically incorrect. She’s a highly paid troll. Coulter recently did some trolling on Sean Hannity’s show on Fox this past Monday. She said of the Boston Marathon bombing suspect’s widow,

“I don’t care if she knew about this. She ought to be in prison for wearing a hijab. This immigration policy of us, you know, assimilating immigrants into our culture isn’t really working. They’re assimilating us into their culture. Did she get a clitorectomy too?”

That’s the comedy stylings of Ann Coulter right there. No, it’s not funny. It’s only funny if you’re one of those people that loves to write about how politically incorrect you are on your OkCupid profile. Unfortunately, there are people who have things like this written in their heart and they are sure glad to know that they are not alone. It would appear that the Boston Marathon bombing has brought out the right wing’s xenophobia to play just a little bit. As more time passes, i’m hoping that the xenophobia gets stuffed back into the closet along with all those copies of Sarah Palin’s book. Ann Coulter definitely was touching on something real when she said this and that is the nativist fear of non-white, non-Christian immigration and what that could do to the character of this country. It appeals to our worst instincts and Ann Coulter has made quite the living appealing to our worst instincts which is a sad commentary. It’s also a sad commentary that what Ann Coulter has said and what Laura Ingraham (What is it with right wing blondes?) said about ending immigration from majority Muslim countries sounds a lot like the anti-immigrant rhetoric from the far right in Europe. It would be music to the ears of Golden Dawn, The British National Party or The English Defence League. I’m not saying that European style fascism is going to catch on in this country but it’s definitely not a good thing that their preferred style of rhetoric is coming out of the mouths of mainstream conservative pundits.

 

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24 Apr
2013

Alex Jones and Tamerlan Tsarnaev

alex jones

I honestly wish it hadn’t happened. The Associated Press has reported that Tamerlan Tsarnaev, the Boston Marathon bombing suspect who is no longer with us, was something of an Alex Jones fan. The name Alex Jones isn’t actually mentioned in the story from the AP. The name of his  website full of lies, innuendo and fear mongering   website Infowars was mentioned in the story and it says that Tamerlan had taken an interest in the website. That’s all it says. It doesn’t go into detail. The story is mostly about how Tamerlan Tsarnaev had come under the influence of a Muslim radical named Misha. Alex Jones spins the story in a predictable fashion.

Alex is too close to the truth and the The Powers That Be are trying to associate him with the bombers in order to discredit him. Nevermind that you can find plenty of videos on YouTube where he discredits himself. The main component of the personal legend of Alex Jones is that the Establishment lives in fear of him. His picture is on a dartboard at New World Order headquarters. He is the man waking people up to the reality of the chains that bind them and is throwing a monkey wrench into the plans of the evil, atheistic, Malthusian elite who are hell bent on destroying industrial civilization and killing 80-90 percent of the world’s population. That’s the story he sells to his audience. That’s the story he sells to any disaffected, angry young man with tendencies toward populist rage who perhaps have not heard of him yet. That’s why he’s turning an AP story that mentions his website once into a narrative of the Establishment trying to frame him.

I’d never make the claim that Alex Jones and his website or his daily mental breakdown on the radio radio program inspire people to violence. The connection between political rhetoric and acts of violence is pretty murky. However, Alex Jones does have to realize that some pretty unsavory characters are among the fans of his work. Just take a look at the comments section of any article on Infowars. You’ll find anti-semitism. You’ll find people openly flirting with the possibility of violence against the New World Order. On occasion, someone with a bone to pick with mainstream society who actually takes some sort of action will find himself on the same page as Alex Jones. He didn’t cause the violence. It just means that extremists of all stripes dig his work and identify with his paranoia. He also isn’t a threat to any sort of Establishment. He’s just a crank that makes the most of every instance where his name gets mentioned outside of the conspiracy circuit.

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23 Apr
2013

Glenn Beck Has a Theory and So Do I

glenn beck

 

Glenn Beck dropped his bombshell about the Boston Marathon bombings yesterday. He hasn’t been killed by a drone strike or a suspicious looking suicide so it would appear that The Powers That Be are not sufficiently scared of our intrepid, Diet Coke swilling crusader for truth, justice and the American way. In all seriousness though. He said on Friday,

“This is very, very important. What we do going forward from here will determine the fate of our nation. Make no mistake. This story is number two [September 11 was #1] because of what I know. What we do will make this the most important story of our lifetime. What’s happening now is very important. What happens in its aftermath will make it the most important, because it will either save our country, or we will be done.”

See, that’s what demagogues do. It doesn’t matter if it’s an unscrupulous politician trying to get a country behind him or some asshole behind a microphone who has way too many listeners. It’s always the language of crisis. You get them believing that their lives have intersected with some sort of pivotal moment in history and that things are incredibly scary. You’ve got to scare them just enough so that they don’t think too much. If they think too much, it just doesn’t work. That’s how Alex Jones works. That’s how Glenn Beck works. That’s how the next guy and the next guy after that will work.

Glenn said that the Saudi national that was questioned after the bombing is being deported for terrorist related activities. In reality, a place where Glenn Beck only has a summer home, a Saudi national is being deported for violating his visa. It’s a different Saudi national and the deportation has nothing to do with terrorism. The implication seems to be that the Obama administration is covering up Saudi involvement in the attack one week ago. I believe I know a bit about the reasons behind why Glenn Beck has formulated this theory of a coverup involving a Saudi national.

The suspects in the bombing were the right religion. Islam is the religion of the bad guys. Glenn Beck’s favorite historian David Barton has been in the habit of telling Glenn’s audience that Islam is the religion of the bad guys. The problem with the Boston marathon bombing suspects is that they are entirely the wrong race. Chechens? Glenn Beck knows his audience. Glenn Beck knows that his audience doesn’t know where Chechnya is or what a Chechen is or have any idea about the wars that were fought in Chechnya. They know what an Arab is though. Arabs are just sexier bad guys. Demonizing Chechens would take too much research.

Take a President with an Arabic first name whose administration is supposedly covering up the involvement of an Arab ring leader in a terrorist attack on American soil and Glenn Beck has himself a theory that his xenophobic audience can really get behind. Maybe, just maybe, his audience makes enough noise and all of that noise can get his TheBlaze television network to expand beyond the internet and Dish Network thus fattening his already large bank account and advancing his personal legend.

Me and Glenn Beck are alike in a way. We’ve both got theories.

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