Red State Taliban

The Red State Taliban has been arraigned as a Clear and Present Danger to the nation by Kevin Phillips in his new book American Theocracy. They had been evading detection in the Sun Belt since first surveilled by Mr. Phillips in The Emerging Republican Majority.  The New York Times Book Review, Bill Moyers on PBS Now, Amy Goodman at Democracy Now!, et. al., have been getting the word out.  Now.  Now!

Here in an interview  with Ms. Goodman is a precis of author Phillips' trial brief:

Well, this is very central to the whole Republican constituency.  What you've got is that 45% of American Christians believe in Armageddon, and the more religious ones, the fundamentalists and evangelicals more than anybody else.  So, my assumption is that the Bush electorate is probably 50 to 55% people who believe in Armageddon and probably more or less the same numbers who believe that the Antichrist is already on earth.

He cites the popularity of the Left Behind series to arrive at his assumption.  According to deep sociological soundings of the entire Republican constituency, the Antichrist de jour is presently in the dock in a Baghdad court. Would that it were so. The ongoing smash phenomenon of the DaVinci Code must allow Mr. Phillips to sleep easier.

A much more thoughtful discussion along these lines has been taking place at The American Scene blog site.  Ross Douthat, of Atlantic Monthly and the blog's proprietor, disagrees with Damon Linker's evaluation of an assessed threat to the nation emanating from the keyboard of Richard John Neuhaus, editor of First Things.  Mr. Linker, who worked for Father Neuhaus at First Things, has written a review in The New Republic of his ex—employer's new offering, Catholic Matters: Confusion, Controversy, and the Splendor of Truth.  Alan Jacobs (author of The Narnian) enters the action in the comments, as does Mr. Linker himself.  Mr. Linker also has a book out in September fretting further in long form about 'Theocracy.' 

Pace Chesterton, how much happier Mr. Linker would be if he knew these people (respectfully) didn't give a damn about him.  He is a converted Catholic and presumably goes to Mass.  He can't help but notice that the families he sees on Sunday only wish some kind of insulation, if only for an hour and especially for the children, from the vast, witless, secular American Babylon.  Father Neuhaus petitions the government to think carefully about granting eternal protected status to what his faith considers licentiousness and much worse.  Sometimes the government listens.  Golly.

So, from the evangelicals and the Catholics, and it would be unkind not to include the 'Israel Lobby,' the nation apparently has an internal, sectarian 'long war' on it's hands, the outcome of which is in doubt, and the implications grave.  This is not news to anyone who has even glanced at our history. Selah.

There is, of course, another 'long war.'  Our combatants in that field, as Victor Davis Hanson and Robert D. Kaplan have pointed out, originate from the precincts of the nation that find God, country, and family (not exclusively in that order) as the primary motives for their engaging in military service.  When they speak they are very sure of what they believe.  Their Iraqi brothers—in—arms speak the same way. When both act in concert they tend to succeed.

What good can come of our civil discourse when so many of those ensuring it are considered rubes by Mr. Phillips, who probably thinks he's this month's Mencken but carries the same gravitas on this subject as the cable bichon frise, Bill Maher (recently seen on Real Time scrounging for an Iraq My Lai story)?

Father Neuhaus, who occassionally has the ear of the President, is the same Richard John Neuhaus who marched with Martin Luther King, Jr..  Will there be a new section at the Columbia School of Journalism on 'Romish Practices?"

It is unlikely, actually impossible, that either the faithful or the services will stand down. Both will be loyally engaged in full when the external Clash comes, or, more accurately, as it continues.  They are not very European.  The 2009 Inaugural will not change their religious nor secular commitments in the breach.  And they will be essential.

To how many cabals do Kevin Phillips, Damon Linker, Katrina vanden Heuvel, Glenn Greenwald and Russ Feingold think Mr. Bush can play Richelieu?  He is reportedly not very competent.

The Red State Taliban has been arraigned as a Clear and Present Danger to the nation by Kevin Phillips in his new book American Theocracy. They had been evading detection in the Sun Belt since first surveilled by Mr. Phillips in The Emerging Republican Majority.  The New York Times Book Review, Bill Moyers on PBS Now, Amy Goodman at Democracy Now!, et. al., have been getting the word out.  Now.  Now!

Here in an interview  with Ms. Goodman is a precis of author Phillips' trial brief:

Well, this is very central to the whole Republican constituency.  What you've got is that 45% of American Christians believe in Armageddon, and the more religious ones, the fundamentalists and evangelicals more than anybody else.  So, my assumption is that the Bush electorate is probably 50 to 55% people who believe in Armageddon and probably more or less the same numbers who believe that the Antichrist is already on earth.

He cites the popularity of the Left Behind series to arrive at his assumption.  According to deep sociological soundings of the entire Republican constituency, the Antichrist de jour is presently in the dock in a Baghdad court. Would that it were so. The ongoing smash phenomenon of the DaVinci Code must allow Mr. Phillips to sleep easier.

A much more thoughtful discussion along these lines has been taking place at The American Scene blog site.  Ross Douthat, of Atlantic Monthly and the blog's proprietor, disagrees with Damon Linker's evaluation of an assessed threat to the nation emanating from the keyboard of Richard John Neuhaus, editor of First Things.  Mr. Linker, who worked for Father Neuhaus at First Things, has written a review in The New Republic of his ex—employer's new offering, Catholic Matters: Confusion, Controversy, and the Splendor of Truth.  Alan Jacobs (author of The Narnian) enters the action in the comments, as does Mr. Linker himself.  Mr. Linker also has a book out in September fretting further in long form about 'Theocracy.' 

Pace Chesterton, how much happier Mr. Linker would be if he knew these people (respectfully) didn't give a damn about him.  He is a converted Catholic and presumably goes to Mass.  He can't help but notice that the families he sees on Sunday only wish some kind of insulation, if only for an hour and especially for the children, from the vast, witless, secular American Babylon.  Father Neuhaus petitions the government to think carefully about granting eternal protected status to what his faith considers licentiousness and much worse.  Sometimes the government listens.  Golly.

So, from the evangelicals and the Catholics, and it would be unkind not to include the 'Israel Lobby,' the nation apparently has an internal, sectarian 'long war' on it's hands, the outcome of which is in doubt, and the implications grave.  This is not news to anyone who has even glanced at our history. Selah.

There is, of course, another 'long war.'  Our combatants in that field, as Victor Davis Hanson and Robert D. Kaplan have pointed out, originate from the precincts of the nation that find God, country, and family (not exclusively in that order) as the primary motives for their engaging in military service.  When they speak they are very sure of what they believe.  Their Iraqi brothers—in—arms speak the same way. When both act in concert they tend to succeed.

What good can come of our civil discourse when so many of those ensuring it are considered rubes by Mr. Phillips, who probably thinks he's this month's Mencken but carries the same gravitas on this subject as the cable bichon frise, Bill Maher (recently seen on Real Time scrounging for an Iraq My Lai story)?

Father Neuhaus, who occassionally has the ear of the President, is the same Richard John Neuhaus who marched with Martin Luther King, Jr..  Will there be a new section at the Columbia School of Journalism on 'Romish Practices?"

It is unlikely, actually impossible, that either the faithful or the services will stand down. Both will be loyally engaged in full when the external Clash comes, or, more accurately, as it continues.  They are not very European.  The 2009 Inaugural will not change their religious nor secular commitments in the breach.  And they will be essential.

To how many cabals do Kevin Phillips, Damon Linker, Katrina vanden Heuvel, Glenn Greenwald and Russ Feingold think Mr. Bush can play Richelieu?  He is reportedly not very competent.