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Onan the Clumsy
21st Apr 2004, 22:45
I was wondering; if the religious fundamentalists ever got fully into power in the US, would they turn it into a Christian version of Iran?

Rollingthunder
21st Apr 2004, 22:53
I don't think anyone controls the American people. Individual rights count for too much.

If a government like that ever got into power it would soon lead to the second civil war.

AntiCrash
22nd Apr 2004, 02:14
When you consider the defunding of education, the sound bite media, the televangelists like the one from here in Fort Lauderdale that preach intolerance and hate coupled with the general dumbing down of our citizens, one would have to conclude the USof A is in serious trouble. We have a president that say's God tells him what to do. We commit to a religious war without the mandate of the people, based on "cooked" intelligence and polarize the world into two groups of good and evil. One would have to again conclude that we are in trouble.

We are on the way to ruin driven by a fundamentalist sect running our govt. Maybe we will be lucky and get a new pres. soon but the congress and senate could kill any chance of turning this mess around. I pray we can somehow fix the mess we started in Iraq. We did not have enough troops on the ground and we let the country tear itself apart that's a damn pity. We need the help of the world including the Moslem countries if are to get Iraq back on track. "W" is clearly incapable stuffing the cowboy bit and growing up. I love my country but the govt. scares the hell out of me. I grew up Republican with the models of Abraham Lincon and Teddy Roosevelt as my ideals. These guys are not even from the same planet. Anyways, that's my story and I'm sticking to it.

pilotusa
22nd Apr 2004, 02:24
Religious fundamentalists will not turn the U.S. into a theocracy along the lines of Iran anytime soon, but it is definitely headed in that direction. And, though they are loathe to admit it, turning the U.S. into a Christian theocracy is exactly what they would ultimately like to see.

Voter apathy may just make it possible in the next 20 years or so.

Onan the Clumsy
22nd Apr 2004, 03:23
Robert Heinlein wrote about it once.

Rich Lee
22nd Apr 2004, 05:15
So did Margaret Atwood: "The Handmaid's Tale". Her story is more frightening.

Bubbette
22nd Apr 2004, 05:34
no, our constitution forbids it. Besides, lots of people say the fundamentalists are in power now!

av8boy
22nd Apr 2004, 06:37
I read “Bluebeard’s Egg” once. There was a whole bunch of symbolism. I don’t remember there being anything about the Constitution in it. ‘Cept maybe Ed. :(

chuks
22nd Apr 2004, 07:22
The Founding Fathers wanted no officially recognised religion for the United States of America. They were specifically against the example of the Church of England. This has been put down to their Enlightenment ideals (another little-recognised element taken directly over from the mother country) and the fact that many people emigrated to the then colonies to escape religious persecution, prosecution, call it what you will.

Anyone who wants to establish a state religion in the USA will find himself swimming against a very strong tide!

Capt.KAOS
22nd Apr 2004, 08:15
if the religious fundamentalists ever got fully into power in the US Isn't it already?

Woodward wrote in his book "Plan of Attack" (http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2004/04/15/60minutes/main612067.shtml) when he asked Bush whether he had consulted his father about Iraq:
" I asked the president about this. And President Bush said, ‘Well, no,’ and then he got defensive about it,” says Woodward. “Then he said something that really struck me. He said of his father, ‘He is the wrong father to appeal to for advice. The wrong father to go to, to appeal to in terms of strength.’ And then he said, ‘There's a higher Father that I appeal to."

Woodward's book connects seamlessly with the ones of Clarke and O'Neil. I wonder, will he be called a "gloryhound" also?

chuks
22nd Apr 2004, 12:07
Anyone seriously worried about this can either start stocking the bomb shelter or else breathing a sigh of relief when the election results are in, first week in November.

If Bush makes it for a second term he will feel justified in his rather unique approach to politics and world affairs and get us into yet deeper doo-doo. If Kerry beats him then he will presumably start working on a different way to get us out of Iraq, while reversing many other of the more peculiar turns that Bush has taken in many things.

Isn't it generally true that politics taken to extremes in robust democracies tends to be self-defeating? Internal and external forces tend to drive politics back towards the middle somehow. Four years isn't enough time to lobotomise a whole nation.

In the case of Bush and his camp, I think they have chosen a lot of policies for their saleability to the demos or to particular supporters (particularly the religious far-right) rather than choosing policies with intrinsic merits, so that long-term failure is a likely outcome.

In other words, they can get elected, but can they repeat that initial success? My bet is that, pretty soon, George W. Bush will just be a footnote in the history of the USA.

B.L.G Bob
22nd Apr 2004, 14:05
QUOTE]Bush will just be a footnote in the history of the USA.[/QUOTE]

I sincerely hope so. I recall a Canadian mentioning that
"Dubya" had been handed most or some of his achievements/
success or what ever on a "plate". To which he at some point "cocked up". Would his time as President be one ?


It's not what you know. It's who you know. Unfortunately

I wouldn't say the fundamentalists are fully in power, but from what Capt. KAOS has posted, important decisions are being clouded by ones religious outlook and not examined on there own merit.


I now take cover

Taildragger55
22nd Apr 2004, 15:29
The definition of a good politicial system is this: It can survive no matter how idiotic the politicians in charge.

The US survived worse than Dubya.

The trick is in limiting their powers.

chuks
22nd Apr 2004, 16:17
The US system gives the President somewhat limited powers, since most of his decisions are subject to approval by the legislature and to review by the judiciary. And, of course, he only has a four-year term instead of perhaps six years to life. (This can lead to a certain degree of smugness on the part of such world leaders as The Ebagum.)

On the other hand, we don't really have something akin to a 'vote of no confidence'. Things can get pretty messy when someone is going off the rails (Nixon) or else going ga-ga (Reagan).

So far, though, the system seems to have worked. It could well come to pass that the American electorate become stampeded into some rush away from democracy. I think it could be argued that the Bush administration played up 9/11 in order to get rubber-stamp approval for some very dodgy moves. But we can see those same moves now coming under increasing scrutiny by other institutions so that we may move back towards the centre despite the wishes of the President and his circle of advisors.

As to Bush personally, he really does look like some sort of typical upper-class loser. Check out J. Danforth Quayle for the absolute nadir of this sort of jerk, but W. comes close.

ORAC
22nd Apr 2004, 16:35
Chuks,

I'd start stocking your shelter now...... If it’s war you want, vote Kerry (http://209.157.64.200/focus/f-news/1114701/posts)

Bubbette
22nd Apr 2004, 16:44
Loser? Um, yes, he went from conquering a drug addiction, to being a successful businessman, to the Governor of Texas, to the President of the US. Yes, that sounds like a loser to me.

con-pilot
22nd Apr 2004, 16:46
Actually there was nearly a second Civil War in the United States in the late 1800’s because of a fundamentalist religion. The State in question was Utah. The religion was the ‘Latter Day Saints’ (LDS) better known as Mormons.

Sorry to say I can’t remember the details other than the Mormons wanted a totally religious state/country ruled by the leaders of the Mormon Church. The Mormons had a militia armed with some of the best weapons they could steal from the U.S. Army.

The President of the United States ordered the US Army to go into Utah and disarm the militia by whatever force necessary and return power to the civil authorities. Fortunately the General commanding the Army chose to disregard his orders and used diplomacy to avoid a terrible battle.

The Mormon leadership had let it be known that even the women and young children would fight to the death to establish a Mormon state (sound familiar). There was no doubt that the US Army would have won the war. The Mormons were out number by over a 1,000 to 1. Also there was a large portion of the population of Utah that wanted no part of a Mormon run state that would have fought on the side of the US Army.

But as history showed the war was avoided by cooler headed people and not one person lost their life.

When I get more time I will look up the actual dates and the names of those people involved.

Nani
22nd Apr 2004, 18:31
We have a president that say's God tells him what to do

Considering the source,I'd be careful making this type of allegation against President Bush.

Try this site for further reading. (http://www.washingtonpost.com/ac2/wp-dyn/A37944-2003Jun26?language=printer)

I pray we can somehow fix the mess we started in Iraq.

Pray? ;)

airship
22nd Apr 2004, 21:09
Fortunately the General commanding the Army chose to disregard his orders and used diplomacy to avoid a terrible battle. My sort of General. I don't suppose they make them like that anymore? :rolleyes:

pilotusa
23rd Apr 2004, 02:47
Bubbette -

Our U.S. Constitution forbids many of the things the Federal government does every day. But the "two-party system" is way to comfortable with each other and the status quo to do anything about it.

chuks
23rd Apr 2004, 06:52
Dear Bubbette,

This is great stuff! George W. Bush conquered a drug addition? To beer? That is seriously heavy stuff! There must be a movie in that one somewhere: 'The Man With the Golden Throat'. 'No, Laura, take it away! I have sworn to live without that devil's brewski forevermore.'

'Oh Bushy, you are so brave! I will bring you some Kool-Aid instead. And a bible.'

'Make it the illustrated one, baby. All them big words make papa's head hurt.'

But there is more! 'Successful businessman...' The only guy in West Texas who couldn't find oil if he was looking at the dipstick in his pickup truck, even. They had to set him up as a baseball club owner, in a sweetheart deal that stank to high heaven of misuse of public funds, to finally get the poor boy cured of his persistent and embarrassing poverty.

As to becoming Governor of Texas, well, it's not exactly like ruling part of the USA proper, is it? Jackrabbits, sagebrush and f*ckwits, with the odd rational person mixed in among them... Bush might have fit very well in that scene as a combination of baseball club owner and governor; it is just a pity the Republican power elite needed to move him on a bit, onto the national stage. This may have been due to brother Jeb's alleged murky past threatening to torpedo his role as the chosen candidate but, whatever the reason, even you cannot argue that George W. Bush is the very best that we could have come up with for President. Can you?

Elected President... well, sort of, yes. I will have to give you that one, ignoring the various off-putting details that went along with his less-than-overwhelming 'victory'. If the Supremes hadn't intervened things might have turned out very differently but that's all history now. A clean election it wasn't.

So when it comes to 'chutzpah', for now this one of yours takes the cake! You have excelled! It is odd, but I never would have figured you for a Bush supporter... Are there a lot more like you in Manhattan?

But I should beware of mouthing off in print too loudly I suppose. There may be a very large helping of crow coming my way in November if that 'loser' label doesn't stick. With enough cash and enough high-powered backing we could end up with Francis the Talking Mule as Prez - at least George W. is a featherless biped with no current convictions, which makes him something I wouldn't bet against too heavily. But I am betting against him.

Morpheme
23rd Apr 2004, 06:59
If you're backed by a rich Texan oil family who can pull any string to get you ahead in life, and put you in a dodgy oil company to make it look like you can do something in business while others do the work, and keep you out of the war with a cushy posting in the Texas ANG, oh, and if your dad has been president 8 years earlier, any loser can be a winner!

ORAC
23rd Apr 2004, 07:16
Thank god the democratic candidate hasn´t funded his career on family money. Without a bean to his name so to speak..... ;)

chuks
23rd Apr 2004, 08:13
With a full arsenal of sexual innuendo, slander, character assassination, unfounded generalisations, narrow-minded prejudices and I don't know what-all, someone has to resort to punning?!

'Without a bean...' So the guy got lucky and married the inheritor of a fortune based on canned beans. Only in America, say I. Go out and find your own heiress and quit picking on my Great White Hope. And stop punning! That's not funny, that's sick!

ORAC
23rd Apr 2004, 11:28
Sorry. Like Shakespeare, I tend to go from bard to verse...... ;)

Capt.KAOS
23rd Apr 2004, 12:48
If it’s war you want, vote Kerry
ORAC, didn't the author of this confused piece of analyses, John Laughland, also wrote: "the real nutters are those who believe in al-Qa’eda and weapons of mass destruction"?

Um, yes, he went from conquering a drug addiction um, interesting. was it cocaine Bubette? I thought he'd always denied the allegations. Alcohol yes, but drugs?

being a successful businessman you refer to his bankrupted oil company or the Texas Rangers?

and I'm sure you're aware of his resume (http://politicalhumor.about.com/library/blbushresume.htm)

airship
23rd Apr 2004, 13:22
(Little hijack) Capt.KAOS, "Puka Puka but not a Tuam...", does one assume that you are currently based on that atoll?! Not culturing pearls are you? Back in the mid-'80s, I was employed by the owner of a 180' motor yacht of the same name and spent a couple of years in French Polynesia. My boss had been trying to acquire an island there for some time but none of the local officials evidently took him to be a latter-day Marlon Brando. So he built the "Puka Puka" in 6 months (took over an uncompleted order from the Monegasque Grimaldis) and we turned up in Papeete when strangely enough he was given all sorts of opportunities. None of the atolls were acceptable, so he ended up with a whole valley on Tahiti-Iti, accessible only by heli or sea. Unfortunetly, he was only able to enjoy his little bit of heaven on earth together with his horses and dogs for about 10 years before going onto a better place... :{ Never actually got to visit Puka Puka though... :sad: ?!

As my ex-boss might once have said, "Religious beliefs are all very well and we should all respect one anothers' beliefs. At the end of the day, what is important to know is that everyone needs to launder their clothes, without which, you and I would not be here...! :)

Capt.KAOS
23rd Apr 2004, 14:32
airship, to (mis)use William Blakes quote; `The man who never in his mind and thought travelled to Puka Puka, is not an artist` :p

Huck
23rd Apr 2004, 16:59
The best I've heard on the subject was from the comic Bernie Mac:

"He knows they got WMD, 'cause his daddy sold it to them...."

I'll go pray now.

Capt.KAOS
24th Apr 2004, 21:23
More American fundamentalism:

http://www.raptureready.com/

"Their beliefs are bonkers, but they are at the heart of power"

"We can laugh at these people, but we should not dismiss them. That their beliefs are bonkers does not mean they are marginal. American pollsters believe that 15-18% of US voters belong to churches or movements which subscribe to these teachings. A survey in 1999 suggested that this figure included 33% of Republicans. The best-selling contemporary books in the US are the 12 volumes of the Left Behind series, which provide what is usually described as a "fictionalised" account of the Rapture (this, apparently, distinguishes it from the other one), with plenty of dripping details about what will happen to the rest of us. The people who believe all this don't believe it just a little; for them it is a matter of life eternal and death.

And among them are some of the most powerful men in America. John Ashcroft, the attorney general, is a true believer, so are several prominent senators and the House majority leader, Tom DeLay. Mr DeLay (who is also the co-author of the marvellously named DeLay-Doolittle Amendment, postponing campaign finance reforms) travelled to Israel last year to tell the Knesset that "there is no middle ground, no moderate position worth taking".

Link (http://www.guardian.co.uk/comment/story/0,3604,1195568,00.html)

Ozzy
24th Apr 2004, 21:28
I thought a journalist's job was to report news. Not to spout his own opinions. That is what is wrong with George Monbiot and his ilk.:*

Ozzy

Black Fly
25th Apr 2004, 01:22
I'm not much into politics. I imagine you people here are much smarter than me. All I know is that America is a great place with a lot of great people. Great Britain, Australia and every other country on this planet are great places with great people. No matter where you are, or who you pray to, the average people like me don't have problem with the average people anywhere else. Now you politicians are smart folks, well, you got other ideas.

God (any God you like) Bless America, Australia, the Queen and Tony Blair and everybody in the World!

West Coast
25th Apr 2004, 03:50
Capt Kaos
Do tell, why are you so interested in internal US issues. Does your nation not have issues that keep you enthralled enough? Could it be a divursion from that that keeps you on task of commenting on all things American?

CYPR
25th Apr 2004, 04:25
I would suppose West Coast that he believes the US is an easy target right now............. pity really.

West Coast
25th Apr 2004, 04:55
After a few years of seeing the posts here I have come to the conclusion the US will always be the easy target. It doesn't matter who resides in the White House or the politics of that person. As an example look to the thread about the CEO of McDonalds dying. It became a referendum on America because some fat asses couldn't control themselves while others bemoan the presence of the burger joint as cultural imperialism.

An easy target, yup you got that right. And a convenient one also.

Gingerbeer
25th Apr 2004, 10:54
Being that the USA is the only remain superpower then it is hardly surprising that people might wish to comment on current affairs in the USA. Internal decisions made in the USA can potentially affect all nations and therefore will garner the interest of people everywhere.

The price of gas in the USA, for instance, would appear an 'internal issue' but in fact because the Saudi production levels are / were going to be varied purposely by the Saudi authorities to help the current USA administration then it becomes a issue that affects us all.

The USA is a big, powerful country and it's internal decisions can cascade down to affect all of us. The rest of the world doesn't get a say on who makes those decisions, only the electrorate of the USA has that privilege.

Recent events show us that sometimes the USA makes decisions that seem to affect us all for the good, sometimes for the bad. They probably won't get much praise when it's a good decision but they defininately will get loud and sustained criticism when they make a bad one, that's human nature.

I just hope the good decisions will outweigh the bad ones.

Onan the Clumsy
25th Apr 2004, 13:40
I just hope the good decisions will outweigh the bad ones Hopefully after November ;)

46Driver
25th Apr 2004, 14:08
The last electoral college count (vice the popular vote) that I have seen has Bush with somewhere around 320 while Kerry is near 220. That is counting from each individual state's poll, however many states are very close with Bush ahead by 1% in Florida (Kerry was ahead there last week by 1%) and 6% in Pennsylvania. Its going to be tight, but the economy is picking up steam.

Not meant to inflame anyone, its just what was on the news.

Blacksheep
25th Apr 2004, 15:08
As I understand it the defitinition of a fundamentalist is "...one who voluntarily refuses to permit anyone or anything to change his/her mind."

Fundamentalism doesn't necessarily involve religion it can apply to absolutely anything and there is strong evidence of increasing fundamentalism in the world. As the world becomes more and more polarized, the next world war then becomes more and more likely - if not inevitable. It is probably no longer a question of "If"; it is now a question of "When" and "Who"

cumulus
25th Apr 2004, 15:17
Capt Kaos.
Thank you so much for that link, it is an absolute gold-mine. For those who have not visited the site, here is a little taster... (http://www.raptureready.com/rr-book.html)
:ok:

PS
This is their take on bonny prince Chas
Prince Charles of Wales I'm told that “old big ears” Prince Charles could be the beast. Charles has had the familiar numerology claims made about him--ones that equate his name with 666. Further, he is believed to have ancestral links to the Roman Empire. It was also reported to me that he's a vegetarian, which could explain why the Antichrist will stop the daily animal sacrifices in the Jewish Temple.

phnuff
25th Apr 2004, 19:41
There is a really good article in the FT mag yesterday about fundamentalism in the US and India. The gist of it is that the current Islamic fundamentalism is effectively a result of the failure to be an effective political force because Islam fails to recognise political boundaries where as in the US/India, the religious and political boundaries/objectives are coincident. Not sure if I agree with it all, but its an interesting slant,