Politics

Wait, Mitt Romney's a Mormon?

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That was extremely, if not surprisingly, bland. Bill Bennett walked onto CNN afterwards to give his critique: "I can see this speech being given by any of the Republican candidates and most of the Democrats." Romney duped people into thinking he'd address the worries anti-Mormon religious conservatives have about his faith, and he didn't do that.

Let me assure you that no authorities of my church, or of any other church for that matter, will ever exert influence on presidential decisions. Their authority is theirs, within the province of church affairs, and it ends where the affairs of the nation begin.

That was the worry about JFK, but it's not the worry about Mormonism: Some conservative protestant Christians consider the religion a cult and a perversion of Christianity. They, and the 40-odd percent of the country who don't consider Mormonism "Christian," could give a damn whether Romney talks to Gordon Hinckley.

Some believe that such a confession of my faith will sink my candidacy. If they are right, so be it.

Is anyone convinced by this? Raise your hand. (One problem with the Romney-as-victim-of-persecution story is that if he gets the nominee he'll either be running against a woman or a black man, with all the prejudices thereof, which makes declarations like these ring extra hollow, and even patronizing.)

What do I believe about Jesus Christ? I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and the Savior of mankind. My church's beliefs about Christ may not all be the same as those of other faiths. Each religion has its own unique doctrines and history.

Weak, weak, weak. That basically validates the conspiracy theories I hear when I visit Baptist bible studies.

In recent years, the notion of the separation of church and state has been taken by some well beyond its original meaning. They seek to remove from the public domain any acknowledgment of God. Religion is seen as merely a private affair with no place in public life. It is as if they are intent on establishing a new religion in America โ€” the religion of secularism. They are wrong.

Again, Romney's just not very good at political jujitsu. He's a yellow belt. He's trying to change the topic from the particulars of his faith to a bland "we're all in this together against the ACLU and Rosie O'Donnell" message, and it's woefully obvious. Ramesh Ponnuru points this out in a Corner devoted, for the moment, to slavering over Romney's "presidential" bearing and patriotism. Romney is asking voters to retain their prejudices about faith, especially the personal faith of politicians: To demand that the people they elect have a relationship with God that they approve of.

Is Romney's slow-motion three card monte going to convince religious voters that they can trust him over Huckabee? I don't think so. I know some of those people. They're not stupid.

UPDATE: I foolishly didn't link this before: Ron Paul's response.

We live in times of great uncertainty when men of faith must stand up for American values and traditions before they are washed away in a sea of fear and relativism. I have never been one who is particularly comfortable talking about my faith in the political arena, and I find the pandering that typically occurs in the election season to be distasteful.

Our nation was founded to be a place where religion is freely practiced and differences are tolerated and respected. I come to my faith through Jesus Christ and have accepted him as my personal savior. At the same time, I have worked tirelessly to defend and restore individual rights and religious freedom for all Americans.

The recent attacks and insinuations, both direct and subtle, that Gov. Romney may be less fit to serve as president of our United States because of his faith fly in the face of everything America stands for. Gov. Romney should be judged fairly, on his record and his character, not on the church he attends." 

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  1. I initially read the headline as "Wait, Mitt Romney's a Moron?

    I liked it better that way.

  2. Is Romney's slow-motion three card monte going to convince religious voters that they can trust him over Huckabee? I don't think so. I know some of those people. They're not stupid.

    Yes they are.

  3. Does K-Lo ever turn off her vibrator when posting about Romney? You can practically hear the BZZZZZZZZ every time you go over to NRO.

    I never Catholic chicks were so hot for Mormon dick. I guess that is what makes them feel "naughty" nowadays.

  4. Giuliani's response is a lot more interesting than the actual Romney speech. Here's a link. Reminiscent of the Florida debate video. Anyone know what media firm Rudy uses?
    http://youtube.com/watch?v=C6ZmZizWTy4

  5. Religion is seen as merely a private affair with no place in public life.

    Uh, Mitt. It's not that I object to religion in public life. That is reality. Always has been, always will be. I, and others, strenuosly object to relion having a place in governmental affairs. See the difference?

  6. KN -

    Some are, some aren't. IMH experience, evangelical Christians are stupid or smart at about the same rate as every other religious group I've met, including my own very diverse "people" (Atheists).

    Ron Paul over at Newsweek had a short little video where he bemoaned the thought that political logic would dictate that a religious-minority candidate would have to address the issue of their own faith. I wish he had gone further and said that Evangelical Christians are "people", and as such, care about their prosperity and civil liberties and America's standing in the world et al. and not just the one or two red-meat social issues with which they have been cruelly--albeit sometimes deservedly--identified; missed opportunity, that.

    I've met enough Evangelicals who are plain sick of politicians who think that if they just say "pro-life" they'll automatically score their vote that I'd be willing to bet a candidate with a different message might have an opening for a wedge to push...if Ron Paul dialed up the whole "individuals are not defined by their group" message, he might be able to pull from the folks of all stripes who feel vaguely guilty about being one-issue voters.

  7. BTW Mitt, your religion has absolutely nothing to do with why I despise you. Your policies and convictions seem to be awfully mallable. IOW, I don't believe anything that comes out of your mouth. Does poll driven political whore mean anything to you?

  8. """They seek to remove from the public domain any acknowledgment of God. Religion is seen as merely a private affair with no place in public life. It is as if they are intent on establishing a new religion in America - the religion of secularism. They are wrong."""

    Religion is between one's God and one's self first. It is a private matter, albeit not totally a private one. I believe Christians have as much right as Muslim about praying in public spaces. Many Christians disagree. What's wrong with creating a new religion anyway, we are a nation enshrined with religious freedoms allowing for the creations of any new religion, even if it's created by a science fiction writer.

    Romney wants what other Christians wants, Religious dominance. That is against our founding principles. The separation of church and state is to preserve religious freedoms, and not to allow one dominant religion or a single state religion. That's why they hate it. They want Christianity to be the official religion of the United States. Our founding fathers wanted to prevent that. They understood that the state would screw up religion and use it for its own ends.

  9. Romney missed a chance to undercut Ron Paul by vowing to track down the atheists who removed all those references to God in the Constitution.

  10. J sub D,

    A religious politician will never see the difference.

    """Does poll driven political whore mean anything to you?"""

    It's what he denies when he looks into a mirror. It's shows he's a politician first, child of God second. Something no real religious person would vote for but it suits the Falwell types just fine.

    Someone should ask him if he plans to uphold the "Thou shall not kill" commandment and abolish the federal death penalty.

  11. Local news this morning was all over this, showing some religious gathering in Missouri, where "normal" Christians were trying to convert Mormons. They showed some of the interaction. Essentially, "You're book of fairy tales is wrong! It's wrong!!! Our Jeebus is the REAL Jeebus."

    They asked one guy why he was there. "I love Mormons [he was not a catholic female]. I want them to be saved like me."

  12. In such a world, we can be deeply thankful that we live in a land where reason and religion are friends

    Clearly, Mitt has not spent much (or any) time on this website. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Did Kennedy also get slammed like this after his speech for not being forthcoming enough about the more peculiar aspects of his religious beliefs?

  13. I don't necessarily think that the speech failed to deliver on Romney's promises. He said he would not talk about Mormonism, but about religious liberty. It was political commentators who dubbed this address "The Speech" and compared it to JFK's famous Houston address who oversold this. Now, Romney was, of course, counting on this overselling in order to get people to watch, but slick pol. that he is, he never told us that this would be about his particular faith.
    Another thought, fewer people would rule out voting for a candidate that is black or female than would rule out voting for a Mormon. So while the "problem with the Romney-as-victim-of-persecution story" may "ring extra hollow, and even patronizing" it holds more water than for any other candidate.

  14. Edward -- this is the slamming Romney thread, not the slamming Paul thread (not that we ever have any of those). Try to keep up, mmm-kay?

  15. Let this be a lesson, kids. Take that last dump BEFORE you go onstage. Prevent gas grin and standing butt clench.

    Otherwise, the speech was a bait-and-switch job. And why Mitt thought it should be given at the Bush Mausoleum before robots, I don't know.

    I admire the one Romney son who continually balks at showing up for DadMitt events. The blonde one. The adopted Earth boy.

  16. How long until Edward's every-single-thread posting about Ron Paul and the "repleteness" of references to God in the Constitution constitutes spamming? I, for one, am thoroughly sick of it.

  17. Weigel --

    How can you say people were duped if you found the content unsurprising? I don't think anyone paying any attention got the impression that this speech would deal with the specifics of the Mormon faith.

    J sub D / TrickyVic --

    There is a difference between "public life" and "governmental affairs." You can allow a nativity scene in a public square -- or a picture of Mary drawn with feces, or a big advertisement for "The God Delusion," or whatever -- without involving religion in "governmental affairs."

    I'm an Obama supporter (least bad of the lot). I am violently opposed to many of Mitt's positions. But, as someone who dislikes empty political rhetoric, I do get bugged when people act like he gets things like this wrong. His attitude towards religion in the U.S. is utterly uncontroversial; only fringe consitutional scholars would disagree with anything he said.

    Please, *please* look at people's *positions*. Mitt wants to continue reallocating our tax dollars to wealthy executives and shareholders of the military-industrial complex through the so-called War on Terrorism. He has a schoolground-style foreign policy. He is against stem cell research (which, I note, is out of line with mainstream Mormon thought). *These* are some of the reasons not to vote for him, *not* his (very solid) understanding of the role of religion under the U.S. Constitution.

  18. The recent attacks and insinuations, both direct and subtle, that Gov. Romney may be less fit to serve as president of our United States because of his faith fly in the face of everything America stands for. Gov. Romney should be judged fairly, on his record and his character, not on the church he attends."

    If Paul had said "harshly" instead of "fairly" that would have been perfect. Even so Paul is sounding more Presidential every day.

  19. I, for one, am thoroughly sick of it.

    I stopped responding to the menally challenged fucktard a while ago. It appears to be good for one's digstion.

  20. Who do you think sent K-lo that vibrator?

  21. "Someone should ask him if he plans to uphold the "Thou shall not kill" commandment and abolish the federal death penalty"

    yawn. this is the most misused and misunderstood claim (usually by leftists at DU etc.) i have seen on the internet.

    the actual (original) text of the bible (ask any scholar) is best translated as "thou shalt not murder" iow the term roughly translated as "kill" is better translated as "murder" which means to unlawfully kill.

  22. the actual (original) text of the bible (ask any scholar) is best translated as "thou shalt not murder" iow the term roughly translated as "kill" is better translated as "murder" which means to unlawfully kill.

    Those Jews weren't stupid. They knew that a pacifist tribe would last about one generation in the Middle East, even then. Sadly, three thousand years later, that's still the case.

  23. "I come to my faith through Jesus Christ and have accepted him as my personal savior." - Ron Paul

    I'm voting for Paul early and often, but I hear a deafening silence in place of the usual religous vitriol around here. And don't try to tell me it's usually reserved for the Pat Robertsons of the world. Anyone who believes in a magic savior is an idiot in all things, right? ...Right?

  24. """There is a difference between "public life" and "governmental affairs." You can allow a nativity scene in a public square -- or a picture of Mary drawn with feces, or a big advertisement for "The God Delusion," or whatever -- without involving religion in "governmental affairs."""

    Absolutly.

    And, a public square is different that the state capitol grounds, but I'm not against religion displays on capitol grounds as long as they allow all religions equal access. That's something Christians don't really want.

    """the actual (original) text of the bible (ask any scholar) is best translated as "thou shalt not murder" iow the term roughly translated as "kill" is better translated as "murder" which means to unlawfully kill.""""

    I have a hard time believe that, being man not God hold the domain of governments. Your analysis would say God says it's alright to kill if man has previously approved it. Would the holocaust be okay by God if the Nazi German government approved it by passing legislation? So what does lawful mean in Gods eyes?

  25. maybe because Hr. Bunny misunderstands what he perceives as "usual religious vitriol"?

    confirmation bias much?

  26. "I have a hard time believe that,"

    then maybe you should do some RESEARCH.

    your post, translated into english means : "i don't want to believe it"

    i'm not saying this is or isn't what God wants, if he even exists.

    i am saying that the more precise tranlsation is "thou shalt not murder"

    so stop opining, and look into it.

    "with all thy getting, get understanding" or something...

    being man not God hold the domain of governments. Your analysis would say God says it's alright to kill if man has previously approved it. Would the holocaust be okay by God if the Nazi German government approved it by passing legislation? So what does lawful mean in Gods eyes?

  27. Religion is seen as merely a private affair with no place in public life.

    Jesus H. Christ said so himself. Apparently Mitt feels it's OK to ignore important tenets of the words of his savior, so I'm sure Mitt will have no problem ignoring important tenets of the Constitution.

  28. no, mitt feels roughly the same as kennedy, MLK, etc. which is that his religion informs his public stance on public issues (yes, i am aware MLK was not an elected official).

  29. "maybe because Hr. Bunny misunderstands what he perceives as 'usual religious vitriol'?"

    Since perception is just that, I'll only say "yuh-huh!" That, and a concession that I have no evidence of VM participating in said vitriol.

    Also, what is the feminine variant of "Hr. Bunny"?

  30. Anyone who believes in a magic savior is an idiot in all things, right? ...Right?

    As an atheist who lived 18+ years in the same house with a devoted Roman Catholic (my sister), no. She was smarter than me in most ways, so I gave her a pass on the superstition thing. We had long, passionate discussions on the topic absent vitriol. Unbelievable, huh?

  31. I stopped responding to the menally challenged fucktard a while ago. It appears to be good for one's digstion.

    A nicely done reinterpretation of the first of Prolefeed's Ten Commandments For Posting on Reason TM:

    1. Thou shalt not feed the trolls.
    2. Thou shalt not malign Saint Paul.
    3. If thou slightly garblist a post, but thy true intent is readily understandable, thou shalt not waste everyone's time with a correcting post.
    4. Thou shalt not Godwinize a thread -- thou shalt leave that to the Reason staffers.
    5. Thou shalt not persistently and vulgarly insult Reason staffers, lest thee be consigned to the outer darkness of being banned from posting.
    6. If thou shouldst criticize another for a garbled post, thou shalt in thy criticizing post commit a far more grievious garbling (hat tip to joest for this one).
    7. Thou shalt not post blind links, without any cautionary preface, to material so utterly disgusting that even the jaded and cynical souls on Reason art grieviously smitten. Any material involved chicks and a cup shouldst be considered suspect.
    8. Thou shalt not criticize pandering politicians for the few things they actually get right, when a plethora of evils to be condemned mayest be availed of.
    9. Thou shalt not spam. This applyest especially to thou, Donderooooooooest.
    10. Thou ShaltNot post RightWing BullShit using ReallyWeird CapitalizationAndPunctuation.

  32. 'scuse, Fr. Bunny! APOLOGIES!!!

    and I must confess to being one of the accused, and I actually do see what you're heading to, and it is a good question!

    /kicks pebble.

  33. Gov. Romney should be judged fairly, on his record and his character, not on the church he attends.

    Damn Straight! Then he'd REALLY be screwed!

  34. """your post, translated into english means : "i don't want to believe it""""

    Wrong, I have no desire to believe it either way. But under the conclusion you present, abortion would not be murder since it's allowable under law. That's something which most religious people would disagree. Are they wrong and abortion is ok in God's eyes? It's can't be both ways.

  35. "Wrong, I have no desire to believe it either way. But under the conclusion you present, abortion would not be murder since it's allowable under law. That's something which most religious people would disagree. Are they wrong and abortion is ok in God's eyes? It's can't be both ways."

    no, it doesn't mean the law is always right. lawful here means "justified" and i should have been more specific.

    the point is that it does not mean ANY killing. translations are not PERFECT because languages are not math. there is SOME fuzzyness. however, the word for "kill" is much better understood as referring to unjustified/unlawful killing than merely ANY killing, and NO scholar i am aware of disputes that

    my point is that this is not a matter of personal belief, it's a matter of translation.

  36. All I can say is Romney has a lot to overcome with the hard line Christians. I was watching one of the national news broadcasts and the reporter asked a Baptist minister from Fort Worth, Texas about what he thought of Mormonism.

    His response?

    "Mormonism is a cult."

    /Sorry no link. But I'm sure some of you saw it too.

  37. Romney and others can claim that Mormonism is a religion as much as they want but that will never change the fact that Mormonism is a cult. And if the President of the Mormon Church decides that God told him to influence US policy...you better believe that he would be on the phone with Romney telling him exactly what to do. I am someone with a Bachelor's degree in both Bible & Religion and fully understand that Mormonism is a cult and why. A cult is any group (regardless of size) that interprets the doctrines of a religion in an unorthodox fashion. Unlike Religions which create their doctrines based on interpretation of book(s) scriptures within their context, cults create their doctrines first and then take the scriptures from the books of other religions and force them outside of their context to fit the twisted ideologies of the cult. Cults have come out of all religions and Christianity is no exception. The 2 largest cults that have come from out of Christianity have been the Jehovah's Witness cult and the Mormon Cult. Next time someone tries to tell you that Mormonism is Christian, keep in mind that Mormon doctrine teaches that their god was once a physical human being who attained god status (the Adam God doctrine of Mormonism), there is no trinity, Jesus Christ and Satan are half brothers (Satan was not an angel created by God), Blacks were once considered a cursed race by God (until civil rights movements made that inconvenient), Women are second class citizens and will be eternally pregnant with their Mormon husband in the after life ruling over their own planet, you can baptize the dead by proxy using the living and lastly, Mormonism fails every test of archaeology as nothing claimed by Joseph Smith has never been found.

    In retrospect, those who have done their homework regarding the Book of Mormon are pretty clear that there was never any Book of Mormon and that Joseph Smith stole a draft of a fiction story titled "A View of the Hebrews" and published it under the heading of "Book of Mormon. Ultimately, Mormonism fits every parameter of a cult and like all cults...they can change their doctrines at the drop of a hat which is something true religions never need to do. They may claim to believe in God and Jesus Christ but they are referring to a totally different God and a totally different Jesus Christ compared to Christianity.

  38. no, it doesn't mean the law is always right. lawful here means "justified" and i should have been more specific.

    Just like we're justified in killing 1000s of Iraqis for various reasons. This is especially true for if they reach down and pick up a piece of wire or something.

  39. """no, it doesn't mean the law is always right. lawful here means "justified" and i should have been more specific."""

    So abortion is justified under God's eyes?

  40. The fact that I was comlpetely unaware of Paul's plans for spending eternity perfecting his harp-playing says plenty, but I still think it's a noteworthy strike against him. Just wondering how the H&R crowd would decide to integrate/ignore/forgive/excuse it.

    Thanks, VM. FrBunny from here on out.

  41. prolefeed,

    Dropped that third tablet, huh? Good stuff1 ๐Ÿ˜‰

  42. Those Jews weren't stupid. They knew that a pacifist tribe would last about one generation in the Middle East, even then. Sadly, three thousand years later, that's still the case.

    To nitpick, a more accurate argument would probably be that a whole bunch of different tribes had various levels of pacifism and militarism. The ones that found the best tradeoff survived and are still with us, while the others were either destroyed or self-destructed. Otherwise, you would seem to be saying that the Jews were Intelligently Designed

  43. "Mormonism is a cult."

    Where does this come form? Even if they still supported polygamy, that doesn't disqualify it from being a religion. By most dictionary definitions, "cult" and "religion" are essentially synonyms.

    Using the idea that a cult controls its members, how is that any different from any other religions, especially the ones that say "if you break this rule, you go to hell"

    Using the idea that a cult is a religion that is not common:
    1) How does this mean something bad, uncommon != bad
    2) Wouldn't that make (in the US at least) every religion that is not a standard Christian sect a cult?

  44. A cult is any group (regardless of size) that interprets the doctrines of a religion in an unorthodox fashion

    wow, beg the question much?

  45. "A cult is any group (regardless of size) that interprets the doctrines of a religion in an unorthodox fashion."

    John - Christianity took the Jewish holy book, and chose to interpret it in an unorthodox manner, and even added their own stuff like Mormons did! Then Protestants came along, and did the same thing!

  46. """Romney and others can claim that Mormonism is a religion as much as they want but that will never change the fact that Mormonism is a cult."""

    All religions are cults by definition.

    Main Entry: cult
    Pronunciation: \?k?lt\
    Function: noun
    Usage: often attributive
    Etymology: French & Latin; French culte, from Latin cultus care, adoration, from colere to cultivate - more at wheel
    Date: 1617
    1: formal religious veneration : worship
    2: a system of religious beliefs and ritual; also : its body of adherents
    3: a religion regarded as unorthodox or spurious; also : its body of adherents
    4: a system for the cure of disease based on dogma set forth by its promulgator
    5 a: great devotion to a person, idea, object, movement, or work (as a film or book); especially : such devotion regarded as a literary or intellectual fad b: the object of such devotion c: a usually small group of people characterized by such devotion

  47. prolefeed-
    glad the wind didn't blow you away

    on commandment 7, i definitely learned the hard way about the corruption of edenic innocence that knowlege brings. i have an inveterate need to google terms and pop culture allusions that i didn't previously know. so, when the first time i came across what you mentioned, i googled it, thinking it was some joke about bra size.

    well, contra gi joe, somtimes knowing is *not* half the battle

  48. Foccusing on a candidate's policies and record in office makes sense to me.

  49. All religions are cults by definition.

    Founded by heretics, by definition.

    Main Entry: her?e?tic
    Pronunciation: \?her-?-?tik, ?he-r?-\
    Function: noun
    Date: 14th century
    1: a dissenter from established religious dogma; especially : a baptized member of the Roman Catholic Church who disavows a revealed truth
    2: one who dissents from an accepted belief or doctrine : nonconformist* [my emphasis]

    *Merriam-Webster Online

  50. John Longo,

    You would have had me if you had said the biggest cults to come out of Christianity were Catholicism and Protestantism. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  51. And if the President of the Mormon Church decides that God told him to influence US policy...you better believe that he would be on the phone with Romney telling him exactly what to do.

    Ummm ... no. The Church scrupulously avoids any political entanglements whatsoever. Before each election, every ward gets read a statement from the First Presidency reaffirming the Church's complete political neutrality, and explicitly forbidding using any Church resources or membership rolls for political campaigning.

    This is an artifact of early Church history, where much of the persecution stemmed from the Church overtly siding with one political party (the Democrats) causing the other parties to go after them. Burned by this, the Church leadership decided to be absolutely neutral politically, thus preventing either political party from having a motivation to gang up on them ever again. And, since the Church president is always very old due to the selection process (the current President is 97), the institutional memory goes way back.

  52. Kolohe -- glad to see you got through the storm, too. Lost my internet connection for a day.

  53. FrBunny -

    While it certainly may seem otherwise at times, what with all the Ron Paul cheering in these parts, I (and I think most here would agree) find Ron Paul to be the prominent politician most in line with my personal politics in, well, a long time. I do not, however, worship him or agree with everything he says or does. I find him inspirational and in a class completely by himself among the presidential contenders, but he is not some libertarian messiah. So the fact that he is religious and I am not is just one of those things where we part ways. And that's OK. Until I run for president, I'm never gonna agree with anybody 100%. Paul just gets a hell of a lot closer than any of the others.

  54. I should add that I am not one who believes religious types are less intelligent or poor critical thinkers. A libertarian of that strain I think does face more of a quandary in Dr. Paul. I do start calling critical thinking into question when a particular interpretation of a particular text is held true in the face of overwhelming counterevidence (e.g., creationists), but Paul has kept statements of his faith to a simple "I am a Christian" as far as I know.

  55. Insufferable, this:

    a whole bunch of different tribes had various levels of pacifism and militarism. The ones that found the best tradeoff survived and are still with us, while the others were either destroyed or self-destructed.

    is perfectly consistent with this:

    They knew that a pacifist tribe would last about one generation in the Middle East, even then.

    Which by no means implies this:

    Jews were Intelligently Designed

    Even pedants should know logic.

  56. Some of you may be interested in this interview of Larry Iannaccone at Econtalk. He and Russ Roberts discuss the economics of religion, including the economic dynamics of cults. http://www.econtalk.org/archives/2006/10/the_economics_o_7.html

  57. A cult is usually defined as any religion of which you are not a member. It is a bit like drivers, you are the only sane safe person on the road, the rest are idiots and maniacs.

  58. Ten Coomadments for Ron Paul Libertarian Supporters

    1. Thou shalt not read what Ron Paul has written about the war against religion.
    2. Thou shalt not read what Ron Paul has written about immigration.
    3. Except for the results of straw polls, thou shalt not do the math.
    4. Thou shalt attack any critic of Ron Paul by lengthing the end of his/her name.
    5. Thou shalt keep claiming that you're giving Ron Paul money even if you're not (Who will know?)
    6. Thou shalt loathe, hate, and despise all opponents of Ron Paul be they libertarian or non-libertarian.
    7. Thou shalt refrain from criticizing Nazis for the duration of the campaign.
    8. Thou shalt point out that Hitler believed in breathing.
    9. Thou shalt believe with a perfect faith that 7-9% is a sign of growing support.
    10. Thou shalt know that some conspiracy is probably affoot to defeat Ron Paul and plan to lengthen the ends of the names of the conspirators.

  59. "Coomandment," by the way, is not a typo. Anti-authoriatarian libertarians don't believe in commandments.

  60. "Thou shalt attack any critic of Ron Paul by lengthing the end of his/her name."

    but... but... but... EEEEEEDDDDWEIRD, I'm not a RP fan.... (you actually may have given some of the reasons why). grin.

    (disclaimer: actually, that one is pretty good! The chicken soup for trolling matches that, of course)

    I'd actually like to add to the list:

    We need something that includes his goldbuggery, and how if you disagree, you somehow don't know anything about econ (or something along those lines)

  61. I am someone with a Bachelor's degree in both Bible & Religion and fully understand that Mormonism is a cult and why.

    You must have gone to Podunk Bible College then, or did you respond to an e-mail to get your degree based on "life experience"? Because that statement would have gotten you bounced right out of an introductory religious studies course at any real university...

  62. 11. Thou shalt repsond any criticism of the gold standard by pointing out that Hitler believed in breathing.

  63. Edward wants people to do the math, but does not apparently believe that 9 is higher than 2.

    One other flaw in your list is #6. There are no anti-Ron Paul libertarians. Anyone who is anti-Ron Paul and thinks they are a libertarian is mistaken about one or the other.

    BA HA HA HA! It's an orthodoxy now bitches!

  64. Anyone who is anti-Ron Paul and thinks they are a libertarian is mistaken about one or the other.--Fluffy, the Grand Inquisitor

  65. Fluffy

    Do you need glasses?

    3. Except for the results of straw polls, thou shalt NOT do the math.

    7-9% = 7 to 9% That this is a sign of growing support is a matter of faith, not math, for Paulistas.

  66. I'm personally less crazy about Ron Paul than I am about the movement propelling him. It's not like he's done much of anything to get himself the funds he has or his polling numbers, and he readily admits that.
    What the Ron Paul phenomenon says to me is that there are more people out there who embrace certain libertarian values than I thought there were, and that they have resources.
    Really it gives me more hope that the organizational structure (meet-up groups, etc.) built to support Ron Paul can be maintained and used to further general libertarian values in state and local governments.

  67. Look into my eyes, what do you see?
    Cult of personality
    I'm the candidate of your dreams
    Ive been everything you want me to be
    I'm smallgovernmentconstitutionality
    I'm Ron Paul
    I'm the cult of personality
    I'm the cult of personality
    Cult of personality
    Cult of personality

  68. Reinmoose

    I don't want to rain on your parade, but do you really think it's Ron Paul's libertarian principles that has attracted most of his support. You don't have to be a libertarian to oppose the war. What about the 9/11 Truthers, nazis, white supremicists, and assorted wingnuts who have rallied to Ron Paul? Personally, I'm less sanguine about the movement that's propelling him than I am about him, which is hardly at all.

  69. Paul has kept statements of his faith to a simple "I am a Christian" as far as I know.--Ryan

    The notion of a rigid separation between church and state has no basis in either the text of the Constitution or the writings of our Founding Fathers. On the contrary, our Founders' political views were strongly informed by their religious beliefs. Certainly the drafters of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution, both replete with references to God, would be aghast at the federal government's hostility to religion.-Ron Paul "The War on religion"

  70. Edward -- Going from 1% in the polls to 2% to 3% to 5% to 7-9% is a sign of growing support. Maybe not enough to win anything, but he's got way more people supporting him now than a few months ago.

    I think Paul's on the same growth in support curve as Huckabee, but several months behind -- Huckabee's numbers started to take off after winning that straw poll, Ron Paul's numbers took off after that money bomb. Those events got them on the short list of candidates people considered worth investigating, and out of the "he can't win, so let's not examine his views" ghetto. Whether that growth plateaus, or fails to get high enough before most of the primaries are over, is another question.

  71. Prlefeed,

    Like most religious texts, the Ten Coomandments are open to interpretation. I believe a correct reading of the ninth Coomandmant is that getting anywhere between 7% and 9% is a sign of growing support. This is, of course, a matter of faith. No one would dispute that going from 7 to 9% represents growth, but that's a secular matter of little import to the Ron Paul faithful.

  72. Edward,

    RP pays lip service to other libertarian-like positions. His goldbuggery is absolute liquid crack to self-identifying austrian economist types, and he couches everything in the 'get the federal gov't out' lingo, so there's an appeal to the states' rights crowd, I'd assume.

    He also is able to sponsor bills and then vote no on them, showing political deftness, and he then can stake a claim to some sort of ideological purity (e.g., NAFTA isn't free trade, so get rid of it), and he can allow the Good and the Perfect to be enemies.

    But other things, such as the WoD, PATRIOT, anti Iraq (which you've already mentioned) resonate with some libertarian-leaning people.

    He has that anti status quo appeal, still will deliver on some socially-conservative points, and he is a skilled politician who touches on what Reinmoose notes as some principles that coincide with libertarians.

    Friends of RP probably can come up with legislative behavior that shows a limited government streak in him. That, his skilled framing of his beliefs, his anti war stance, and the fact that he's not the mainstream all probably contribute greatly to the appeal he garners with many hier on this board.

    Kip Esquire has some excellent critique of RP over at his site, BTW.

  73. VM

    You're asking for a lengthening of the end of your name, aren't you?

  74. It's contained in the middle:

    Moooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo(uch)se

  75. I see what you're saying Edward, and I readily admit that there are groups of Paul supporters that I would not want to be associated with. However, I think that small outcroppings of libertarians have more resources to find each other now than they had before. Libertarian-centered Meet-up groups, of which there are many, can weed out the NeoNazis (or not admit them) as they go on with promoting libertarian ideas. This is not something that the Neos would want to do anyway.
    I'm not saying that the whole Ron Paul movement is comprised of libertarians, but that perhaps it has been a good vehicle for getting us out of our houses and out of our parents basements to actually do something to promote our ideas.
    Ok, it does sound a little silly, but still.

  76. REINMOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOSE!!

    [ducks]

  77. VMmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.... just doesn't have a ring to it.

  78. Viiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiking (a la "KAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHNNNN" works. Or just elongate the OOOOOOOs in Moose ๐Ÿ™‚

    BTW your 4:17 was well spake.

  79. I believe a correct reading of the ninth Coomandmant is that getting anywhere between 7% and 9% is a sign of growing support.

    What does the fact that my neighbor is a MILF have to do with Ron Paul's polling numbers?

  80. That's easy: both of your polls indicate upwards movement.

  81. Yes, Edward, some libertarians have anointed him Saint Paul. But you sound like someone who really doesn't understand math at all, saying that someone who, in a few months, went from 1% or less in polls to 7-9% doesn't have "growing support".

    I'd suggest rephrasing to something reflecting reality if you want people to quit elongating the ending of your name. For example, "Ron Paul's support isn't growing enough to win the nomination." Debateable, and liable to be proven wrong by events (who'd have thought even 3 months ago that Huckabee would be leading in a major poll?), but at least not a demonstrably untrue statement that immediately labels you as some nutjob with an agenda.

  82. Prolefeed

    You actually believe that it's "debateable, and liable to be proven wrong by events" that Ron Paul doesn't have enough support to win the nomination?? You need to have you brain pan checked. I think it's leaking.

  83. raised catholic

    I'm talking about the ninth coomandment, not the nine commandment.

  84. Reinmoose

    The way these things work, probably as many people know Ron Paul has taken nazi money as know that he styles himself a libertarian. All he will have achieved is to make libertarianism even more marginal by associating it with kooks.

  85. "to make libertarianism even more marginal"

    Actually, when you think about it, that would be a notable accomplishment! ๐Ÿ™‚

  86. [* R C Dean throws red flag *]

    [ Hochuli: ]
    Upon further review, the logic was faulty; 15 yd penalty on Pedant, automatic first down, Dean.

    [ Madden: ]

    You see his problem here [*yellow lines scribble on screen *] is that he tried to hard at snark, and got burned. He should have pulled a reverse with a different name, and argued somehow that since "Those Jew's weren't stupid," then they must have been Intelligently Designed.

    [ Michaels: ]
    Or he should of just STFU and GBTW. Time out on the field, back to the studio in New York

    [ Costas: ]
    Thank you Al and John. On tonights half time report, does this post violate the spirit of commandment 3?

  87. Edward -- Huckabee is now LEADING in a national poll. Bill Clinton was polling for a while lower than Ron Paul is now prior to becoming president. It is *possible* (albeit fairly unlikely) for Ron Paul to be nominated in a close 6-way scramble where less than 20% of the vote can win. If Ron Paul doubles his current support, to the 14-18% realm, he's a top-tier candidate.

    Unlikely stuff happens all the time. In fact, it would be highly improbable for highly improbable stuff to never happen. It is extraordinarily improbable that the sperm and egg that created you would meet and combine to form what most people here would grudgingly admit is a "person", and yet here you are.

    Take a probability and statistics class sometimes.

  88. "If Ron Paul doubles his current support, to the 14-18% realm, he's a top-tier candidate."--Reinmoose

    There aren't enough already uncommitted loons to make it happen. Maybe if hundreds of asylums let all their inmates out, but how proabable is that?

    I can't wait to see the posts here when it's all over. Conspiracy Theory City!

  89. How did this thread evolve from a Romney is a Mormon to a Ron Paul argument? Interesting that Ron Paul is such a hot button, Edward. Me thinks thou doest protesteth too much. Focus please.

  90. David:

    Mormonism isn't persecuted? Tell that to the Mormon Church. The only religion more persecuted would be the Jews. To this day Mormonism is associated with polygamists despite having banned the practice for over 100 years. I STILL see accusations of a church with millions of practitioners as a cult. Cults never get that big!

  91. 1. Thou shalt not feed the trolls.
    2. Thou shalt not malign Saint Paul.
    3. If thou slightly garblist a post, but thy true intent is readily understandable, thou shalt not waste everyone's time with a correcting post.
    4. Thou shalt not Godwinize a thread -- thou shalt leave that to the Reason staffers.
    5. Thou shalt not persistently and vulgarly insult Reason staffers, lest thee be consigned to the outer darkness of being banned from posting.
    6. If thou shouldst criticize another for a garbled post, thou shalt in thy criticizing post commit a far more grievious garbling (hat tip to joest for this one).
    7. Thou shalt not post blind links, without any cautionary preface, to material so utterly disgusting that even the jaded and cynical souls on Reason art grieviously smitten. Any material involved chicks and a cup shouldst be considered suspect.
    8. Thou shalt not criticize pandering politicians for the few things they actually get right, when a plethora of evils to be condemned mayest be availed of.
    9. Thou shalt not spam. This applyest especially to thou, Donderooooooooest.
    10. Thou ShaltNot post RightWing BullShit using ReallyWeird CapitalizationAndPunctuation.

    Nice. I'd switch 10 to 1, amend 1 to say "excepting those trolls that serve our evil plans e.g. anyone associated with URKOBOLD & CO. or other contrived characters for amusement purposes", and toss 8 altogether. too hypocritical frankly. Call a spade a spade or fuck off.

  92. "Mormonism isn't persecuted? Tell that to the Mormon Church. The only religion more persecuted would be the Jews. To this day Mormonism is associated with polygamists despite having banned the practice for over 100 years. I STILL see accusations of a church with millions of practitioners as a cult. Cults never get that big!"

    Get down off the cross. No religion has a monopoly over victim status or a top ten list. Examples of religions suffering persecutions:

    Native Americans vs. USA Protestants
    Native Americans vs. The Spanish
    Minority Shiites vs. Suniis
    Protestants vs. Catholics
    Christians vs. USSR
    Christians vs. Chinese
    Christians vs. Romans
    ....

    All of those religions survived and thrived through an open discussion of the beliefs of the respective religions.

    Mr. Romney has been very selective and elusive in his alleged frank and open discussion of the reasons we should have no problem with his involvement in a church few of us understand. If he was so solid in his convictions, he would defend his faith and show why it would make him a good POTUS.

    Instead he dodges with talk about how religion isn't a test for the POTUS, at the same time he says he believes that JC is the Lord and Savior and that is supposed to win over the Religious Right. Sorry, Fail, Can't have it both ways.

  93. Unlikely stuff happens all the time. In fact, it would be highly improbable for highly improbable stuff to never happen. It is extraordinarily improbable that the sperm and egg that created you would meet and combine to form what most people here would grudgingly admit is a "person", and yet here you are.

    Hmm.

    I tooks the shitistics classes. i give the guy a 1 in 6 chance! Whoo hoo. That dont mean dick about dollars to donuts. I expect we will suffer under the reign of Hugo Suitpants in the future.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Possibility_theory

  94. thanks for the quote Edward, but I didn't say "If Ron Paul doubles his current support, to the 14-18% realm, he's a top-tier candidate." prolefeed did

  95. On the contrary, our Founders' political views were strongly informed by their religious beliefs. Certainly the drafters of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution, both replete with references to God,

    Ed, this is utter bullshit.

    http://altreligion.about.com/library/weekly/aa070202a.htm

    example

    ""Believing with you that religion is a matter which lies solely between man and his God, that he owes account to none other for is faith or his worship, that the legislative powers of government reach actions only, and not opinions, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should "make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof," thus building a wall of separation between Church and State. Adhering to this expression of the supreme will of the nation in behalf of the rights of conscience, I shall see with sincere satisfaction the progress of those sentiments which tend to restore to man all his natural rights, convinced he has no natural right in opposition to his social duties."

    James Madison, principal author of the constitution

    please, now you muster all the random quotes you want in defence of this discredited argument

  96. Re: Mitt Romney

    Hey, Jesus,
    You're so fine!
    You're so fine you blow my mind!
    Hey, Jesus!
    Hey, Jesus!

    Romney's bullshit is so fucked up it blows my mind. Can you spell suck-up?

    Hey Edwards!
    Hey Edwards!

    Eat me, Mitt ... unless you choose a Muslim for VP.

  97. And, I refer you to the JFK speech he is accused of building on ... Google it, yourself (see: NPR.)

    (Hint: Church and State shall not be intertwined. Period. Religious preferences are private and not applicable to running for office, nor influencing it's execution.)

  98. Okay ... I'll give it to you (U.S. Constitution):

    "Article. VI. - Debts, Supremacy, Oaths
    All Debts contracted and Engagements entered into, before the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be as valid against the United States under this Constitution, as under the Confederation.

    This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.

    The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial Officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States."

    i.e. We don't give a shit what your religious preferences are ... althoug we might give a shit about your sexual preferences ... as long as you don't bring your stinkin' religion into the office, we're cool.

  99. Voters taking into account a candidate's religious views ? Requiring a religious test

  100. That was one of the most powerful speeches I've ever heard and I'm a political junkie. Pat Buchanan even said it was more bold than J.F.K.s which is saying something.

    http://www.Decemeber7thforMitt.com

  101. That speech was the biggest evasion of what Mitt Romney truly believes I have ever heard.

    He states that there is no religious test for president.

    Then, in a bone to the religious right, he says Jesus is my Lord and Saviour.

    That tells me he is tring to have it both ways and he can't. The man can't stand up for his own beliefs, how can he stand up for us and our country? He is a big steaming bowl of FAIL.

  102. Mitt Romney also employs child abusers to staff his campaign. Mel Sembler anyone? That guy is a creep and his creepiness is all over Mitt Romney.

  103. """"This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land;"""

    I always laugh when I see that.

  104. How fucking hilarious. A site that acts like Ron Paul is the fucking Messiah actually has the balls to bash another site for "slavering" over a candidate. Hahaha, give me a fucking break you hypocrites.

  105. Mormonism has been infamous for its flip-flops on blacks, polygamy, and Coca-Cola. Over the years, the sacred 'infallible' texts of Mormonism have been quietly revised to correct typos and contradictions. Mormons have become adept at insisting that their theology is identical to Southern Baptists, while in fact it would fit in more comfortably at a UFO convention.

    The Mormon Church isn't particularly evil (at least not compared to Baptist Televangelists!), but in order to be accepted by the American mainstream, it has had to deny what it is. Mitt Romney strikes me as totally in character with the system that raised him. He'll say anything for approval, then deny that he said it. If we met a person like that in real life, we'd realize he's in serious need of counseling or psychotherapy.

    As for the Big Hucker's rise in the Iowa polls in synch with Romney's collapse, it probably has as much to do with this flip-flop psychosis as the Religious Question. To modify a corallary of Murphy's Law: "If you try to please everyone, you'll end up getting everyone pissed at you."

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