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Is Rick Perry a Theocrat?

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Washington Post columnist Dana Milbank says Rick Perry "is no libertarian"; he is a "theocrat." Milbank is certainly right about that first part (see, e.g., this debunking of the Texas governor's small-government bona fides by the Republican Liberty Caucus of Texas); I'm not so sure about the second part. I too am concerned about how Perry's religious views (or, more to the point, his pandering to the Christian right) might be manifested in public policy. But Perry offers secular arguments for, say, constitutional amendments banning abortion and gay marriage; he does not expect his view of what God wants to be decisive. If Perry is a theocrat simply because his religion influences the moral views that in turn shape his public policy positions, so is any progressive whose political agenda reflects religiously informed values such as peace, responsibility to one's fellow man, or stewardship of the earth.

Furthermore, the evidence that Milbank cites to show that Perry is a theocrat includes positions that do not involve the use of force to impose religious values. Perry, for example, thinks the Boy Scouts, as a private organization, should be free to discriminate based on sexual orientation. So do I; that is in fact the libertarian position, based on property rights, freedom of contract, and freedom of association. Perry likewise argues that gay activists "must respect the right of millions in society to refuse to normalize their behavior." I would go along with that too, provided he is talking about private action, as opposed to the way government treats people. (Given Perry's position on gay marriage, I suspect he conflates the two.) Similarly, Perry's suspicion of "human rights commissions," cited by Milbank as another example of his theocratic views, is fully justified by the threat they often pose to civil liberties. Milbank also notes Perry's views on evolution, homosexuality, Jesus Christ's sin-redeeming abilities, and the shortcomings of the typical university education. But he does not show how those views are relevant to assessing Perry's merits as a presidential candidate.

Like Milbank, I find Perry's conspicuous religiosity a bit unseemly—especially when he blithely insists that all Americans, regardless of their religion or lack of it, "must come together and call upon Jesus to guide us." But those who think Perry's religious beliefs are relevant to his presidential qualifications (a group that seems to include Perry himself) need to make a stronger case. Supporting freedom of association for the Boy Scouts or freedom of speech for opponents of homosexuality hardly makes you a theocrat.

As far as I can tell, by the way, no one is calling Perry a libertarian. The statement to which Milbank objected was Post reporter Perry Bacon's claim that a Perry victory "would cement the Republican Party's shift away from Bush's approach to a more libertarian, anti-government GOP." That much seems possible. After all, you can be more libertarian than George W. Bush without being very libertarian at all. So far it seems that Perry is about as good as Bush on the few issues (immigration, for example) where Bush was pretty good, no worse than Bush in any major way (unless I've missed it; let me know), and substantially better rhetorically, eschewing "compassionate" conservatism and championing federalism, even in the area of drug policy. If there is any substance at all to Perry's Tea Party–pleasing emphasis on fiscal conservatism, Bacon's prediction could turn out to be accurate.

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168 responses to “Is Rick Perry a Theocrat?

  1. But…but…I thought Perry was a crypto-Muslim!

    I’m so confused.

  2. If Milbank hates him he can’t be all bad.

    I remember people saying similar things about Reagan. In fact, right after he won, someone was saying how he was planning on banning rock music.

    1. I thought that was Tipper Gore.

      1. Reagan made her do it. Made her.

        1. No, his astrologer did, you clod. Get with the program.

          1. Actually, Dear, you refer to my astrologer. But I had a bit of influence with Ronnie.

            1. I thought Frank Sinatra was pulling the strings.

              1. He did it Frank’s way?

                1. He cut off ears? FUCK YOU YOU FUCKING FUCK

                  1. I’LL FUCK ANYTHING THAT MOVES

                    1. No. I fucked everything that moved. Eva Gardner, Gina Lolabrigida, Sophia Loren, Kim Novak, Grace Kelly, I had them all. I crap bigger than these queers they put in pictures today.

              2. Tee-hee.

          2. He also had a special red Ouija board in the Oval Office in order to contact Stalin in case of a nuclear crisis.

  3. I suspect that by the standards of today’s lefties, FDR was a “theocrat.”

    1. suspect fail

      1. “I’ve always felt Franklin’s religion had something to do with his confidence in himself,” observed his wife Eleanor. “It was a very simple religion,” she added. He “never seemed to have any intellectual difficulties about what he believed.” This was certainly true of the Peters family and of most of the Christians we knew. We did not dwell on doubts that may have fleetingly passed through out minds as we considered Noah and the Ark, Jonah and the whale, and Moses at the Red Sea. We believed in the Ten Commandments and most of all in the Golden Rule. Roosevelt saw the New Deal as applied Christianity. When he spoke to the nation on Christmas Eve, he quoted the Sermon on the Mount. Later that evening he read A Christmas Carol to his family, gathered by a White House fireside.

        Read more: http://www.beliefnet.com/Faith…..z1WcymPLEz

        1. I consider FDR to be the second worst president of the first half of the twentieth century. This is part of the reason why.

      2. He served as Senior Warden of his church while he was President, he quoted the Sermon on the Mount in speeches, regularly mentioned God and asked people to pray, etc.

      3. so did FDR appoint dominionists? did he call for ID to be taught as science? did FDR hold prayer rallys?

        1. Evolution wasn’t taught in school in the 1930s. And the federal government had no role in education back in those good old days. In fact Roosevelt didn’t support federal aid to education at all.

          And Roosevelt as evidenced by the above quote from his wife was a very committed Christian. Every bit as committed as Perry.

          http://www.criticism.com/polic…..policy.php

  4. I regard Obama’s relationship with Wright’s church as pure political opportunism. I’m wondering (hoping) if Perry’s coziness with NAR is the same.

    1. But Obama chose Wright’s church out of all others in Chicago, attended for 20(?) years, had his daughters baptized there, and donated thousands of dollars. Is Perry that cozy with the NAR?

  5. He’s a theocrat given his demonstrated inability to maintain any sort of separation between church and state.
    Witness his ongoing promotion of YECs to the state science board, a policy with distinct national impacts.
    Witness his prayer rallies and his reliance on prayer as a ‘viable’ solution to meteorological and social conditions.

    It’s pretty clear he’s ‘Bush without the brains’ [shudder!] and a first-class theocrat if not an out and out Christian Dominionist.

    no hugs for thugs,
    Shirley Knott

    1. Just keep saying it and you’ll eventually believe it. Like you keep saying, “Obama is against all these foreign wars.”

      1. When have I ever said Obama was against foreign wars? They’re clearly his favorite, but followed quite closely by domestic wars.
        None of which is material to the question of whether Perry is a theocrat.
        Anyone who supports/ed McLeroy for the Texas board of science education could be nothing else. The evidence is as compelling as it is for Obama’s warmongering.

        no hugs for thugs,
        Shirley Knott

      2. perry himself said GAWD told him to run. and he believes, despite dover, that ID should be taught as science.

        1. Then I won’t be voting for him for school board anytime soon. But that is not what he is running for.

          1. Because Governor’s don’t have any influence on education policy in their state. Or something.

            1. Last I looked he wasn’t running for governor either.

              1. He’s running for President. Maybe the President should not have the role and potential impact on education and science that they currently do, but the fact is that at this time they do. I’m a bit concerned about a guy who thinks the earth is 6,000 years old being ultimately in charge of the NSF and the Department of Education…

                1. maybe. Or maybe the President and the entire federal government should have no roll in education beyond handing out some money. If you followed that rule, you wouldn’t have to worry so much about what the President thought about science would you?

                  1. so u didnt support team boosch’s NCLB?

                  2. Good lord, did you even skim my post before responding to it?

                    “Maybe the President should not have the role and potential impact on education and science that they currently do, but the fact is that at this time they do.”

                    1. BFD. If he does other things that outweigh whatever bad he does there, it is still a net gain. I don’t really give a shit what they teach in schools. I wouldn’t send my kid to a public school if you paid me. And whatever nonsense they teach about ID, is completely overwhelmed by the amount of leftist nonsense they teach about every other subject.

                    2. “Maybe the President should not have the role and potential impact on education and science that they currently do, but the fact is that at this time they do.”

                      So if we elect Perry, progressives will try to prevent ID teaching by getting the federal government out of education?

                2. Maybe the federales should stay out of public education and the NSF.

            2. like the sun rising in the east

    2. I welcome our new YEC overlords. Can’t be any worse than the douches running the show now.

  6. Is Rick Perry a Theocrat?

    No, but he plays one on TV.

    1. Bingo. According to his own records, he has donated about $90 to “his” church in Austin, out of the millions he has made (while in office!). His religion never seemed to have come up much before God told him He wanted him to be President of the US. Perry’s religion is about as authentic as Bush’s prop “ranch” and brush-clearing. Recently adopted, conveniently applied, and destined to be discarded when no longer needed.

      1. Perry’s religion is about as authentic as Bush’s prop “ranch” and brush-clearing.

        Gotta stick up for Bush here. He had that ranch before he was President, and I believe even before he was Governor, and still has it. Its no prop.

        And brush-clearing is what you do in that part of Texas. Its quite therapeutic, in a manual labor way. Chainsaws, great outdoors, immediate gratification, all that.

        1. If you didn’t, your land gets near-unusable. My Grandad’s and my mom’s land is out there in that area (actually Bosque county) and it gets pretty overgrown with mesquite and cottonwood.

        2. Nope. He bought the Prairie Chapel Ranch in 1999, with profits from selling his stake (and that’s another insider story) in the Texas Rangers. It was all part of the big build-up to running for President. His handlers knew he needed a proper backdrop, and a ranch was it. He had never before lived in anything approaching the “country,” not in Midland, nor Houston, nor Dallas, nor of course in Austin. It was all pure poop. Now that he’s no longer President, neither he nor Laura grace Crawford much.

  7. “Unseemly” is exactly the word to describe the public airing of articles of faith. I actually like the way the Mormons tend to do it: acknowledge that, yep, you’re a Mormon, then don’t really talk about it again. If only more people thought evangelical Christianity was as weird as Mormonism, we might be spared some of this blathering about idiot pols’ special relationship with Jesus.

    1. That’s what I miss about gay people, they don’t shut up and act properly ashamed any more.

      1. That’s actually a good analogy. It would be icky if politicians of any orientation got specific about their sex lives. A quick: yep, I’m gay/straight/married/whatever then moving on is sufficient. Telling us what you talk to Jesus about is as irrelevant and overly personal as telling us whether you’re a bottom or a top.

        1. Sarcasm bounces right off her. Drat.

          1. And it was a wonderful piece of sarcasm too.

            1. Sensors show the object’s hull is solid neutronium. A single ship cannot combat it.

          2. I don’t think your sarcasm was as sarcasmy as you think it was.

            1. Fools! I’ll destroy you all!

          3. She’s Canadian, your sarcasm probably didn’t translate properly.

    2. This x 1000

    3. <facetious>
      Moral Majority: The gift that keeps on giving.
      </facetious>

    4. It seems like Jesus agreed with you.

      “Whenever you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, because they love to pray while standing in synagogues and on street corners so that people can see them. Truly I say to you, they have their reward. But whenever you pray, go into your room, close the door, and pray to your Father in secret. And your Father, who sees in secret, will reward you.”

    5. The Mormons have to talk about it full-time for a couple of years. Then they can fade back into the suburbs.

      It the SHTF they don’t want everyone to know who has all the canned goods.

  8. Mitt Romney is the media-approved Republican candidate.

    All others must be discredited and destroyed.

  9. You know, all this talk about theocrats makes me want to run as the Messiah candidate, where I make it clear that a vote for me is a vote for God’s own representative in the White House. Which means real wrath of God stuff and, of course, no adherence to merely human laws.

    Because that, my friends, is theocracy–not some religion-spouting politician who isn’t going to do anything different than any other politician.

    1. This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

      1. …as im pleased w my new tires!

    2. Dr. Peter Venkman: This city is headed for a disaster of biblical proportions.

      Mayor: What do you mean, “biblical”?

      Dr Ray Stantz: What he means is Old Testament, Mr. Mayor, real wrath of God type stuff.

      Dr. Peter Venkman: Exactly.

      Dr Ray Stantz: Fire and brimstone coming down from the skies! Rivers and seas boiling!

      Dr. Egon Spengler: Forty years of darkness! Earthquakes, volcanoes…

      Winston Zeddemore: The dead rising from the grave!

      Dr. Peter Venkman: Human sacrifice, dogs and cats living together…mass hysteria!

      1. You’re right, I left out “type” in my “wrath of God” quote. I accept correction.

        1. You’re getting sloppy, ProL. Real sloppy.

          1. Sloppy like Gozer the Gozerian, Gozer the Destructor, Volguus Zildrohar, Gozer the Traveler, and Lord of the Sebouillia sloppy?

            1. More like 50 foot marshmallow man sloppy.

              1. Yes, the form of the Destructor.

            2. The next time someone asks you if you’re a god, ProL, you say “yes”.

              1. Especially if its Ripley all vamped out.

    3. Since theocracy literally means rule by god, I’m pretty sure that hasn’t ever happened, unless you count societies that worship their mortal ruler as a god. So, the Christian right doesn’t espouse theocracy, though some progressives might.

  10. Boy Scouts discriminate against atheists too. Not sure if it is still the case, but they were getting a lot of free use of govt property (schools, etc.) which should stop. They’re a twisted baby militarist organization anyway so not a lot of love from me. And what’s this white glove treatment that Rick Perry is getting from Reason? Remember how “peaceful” candidate W was vs. president W? Never give a Texas governor access to a nation’s armed forces … bad things like multiple wars start happening.

    1. Why I’ll just bet you can’t even light a campfire.

      1. Not that was some tasty sarcasm.

    2. Yeah, so let’s vote for Obama and merely add to our multiple wars.

    3. They don’t just get the free access, they’re required by federal legislation to get it.

      http://www2.ed.gov/about/offic…..couts.html

    4. Life Scout, 1971. Go fuck yourself zballster.

      1. Kinnath please!
        Only Eagle Scouts are allowed to brag.

        1. No brag, just fact.

      2. … and kinnath adds more evidence to my assertion with his comment. Same to ya.

    5. I’m an Eagle Scout and I somehow found my way to libertarianism as have quite a few of my friends. Some of us were taught to do the right thing, even if that meant disobeying orders. And while yes, there is a pretty healthy strain of nationalism in the organization, you’re going to find that anywhere save for some kind of Anarchist Scouts.

      (hmm, that gives me an idea)

      1. Now you’re talking! No comformist uniforms, no pledge to serve political collectives or supernatural beings, black scarf optional. 🙂

  11. so is any progressive whose political agenda reflects religiously informed values such as peace, responsibility to one’s fellow man, or stewardship of the earth

    What are examples of non-“religiously informed values”?

    1. The values that require you to take money from others with violence or the threat thereof?

  12. All Americans, regardless of their religion, must call upon the Prophet Muhammad and Allah to guide us.

    Right? 😛

    1. “Call for Cthulu”

      1. Weird ….

        1. Do you have call waiting?

          1. Wait. I have to take this. It’s Rick Perry.

            1. Please direct that call to my desk, secretary.

            2. If Perry’s is hooked up with you, he’s got my vote.

  13. William Russell Mead made a great point about religion in politics the other day. He says

    A GOP candidate might feel a need to please creationist voters and say a few nice things about intelligent design. That is politics as usual; it gins up the base and drive the opposition insane with fury and rage. No harm, really, and no foul.

    But if that same politician then proposed to base federal health policy on a hunt for the historical Garden of Eden so that we could replace Medicare by feeding old people on fruit from the Tree of Life, he would have gone from quackery-as-usual to raving incompetence. True, the Tree of Life approach polls well in GOP focus groups: no cuts to Medicare benefits, massive tax savings, no death panels, Biblical values on display. Its only flaw is that there won’t be any magic free fruit that lets us live forever, and sooner or later people will notice that and be unhappy.

    Unless you can show me that Perry plans to pursue policies based upon his religious views that cannot be justified in any other way, I really don’t care if he panders to the creationist wing of the party.

    And Mead makes another good point. We currently have a President who does much the same thing as the tree of life example given above only he calls it “green jobs”

    Green jobs are the Democratic equivalent of Tree of Life Medicare; they scratch every itch of every important segment of the base and if they actually existed they would be an excellent policy choice. But since they are no more available to solve our jobs problem than the Tree of Life stands ready to make health care affordable, a green jobs policy boils down to a promise to feed the masses on tasty unicorn ribs from the Great Invisible Unicorn Herd that only the greens can see.

    Of course Milbank has no problems with some faith based policies as long as they align with his faith.

    http://blogs.the-american-inte…..corn-ribs/

    1. It’s been great to watch John, who mere weeks ago said Perry was terrible, start to walk back on that and defend him regularly now that it looks like he’s going to be his party’s nominee.

      Who didn’t see that coming?

      1. I think Perry is lousy. But Obama sets a pretty low bar. There is nothing in my post that says Perry is good. It just says that I don’t think he is a theocrat and don’t care if he is. But so what? That doesn’t mean he lacks other flaws.

        In future, if you could at least try to argue with the real me instead of the imaginary one that lives inside your head, it would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

        1. Er, you literally would not care if he was a theocrat?

          Do you know what a theocrat is?

          1. Depends on what you mean by “Theocrat” I suppose. But ultimately, he couldn’t do much as President to enact such an agenda thanks to the Constitution and Bill of Rights. So what difference does it make?

            1. Well, yoo certainly seemed to be thinking of a pretty bad version of theocrat when you argue that Perry falls far short of it. Then you say you could care less if he was a theocrat…

              “he couldn’t do much as President to enact such an agenda thanks to the Constitution and Bill of Rights”

              This is like saying you wouldn’t care if the guy was a communist, because, you know, the Constitution and BoR would keep him from doing stuff.

              1. Being a theocrat would not be a feature. But what if he did other things that I agreed with that out weighed that? If you told me that Perry was actually going to reduce the size of government at the cost of him funding some goofy stuff at the NSF or making schools teach ID, I would take that deal in a heartbeat. Teach your kids to think for themselves. Just because the school teaches it, doesn’t mean you have to believe it.

                1. So if a guy was a member of the communist party of america and upon being elected President he would, for some strange reason, reduce the size of government (I have seen labor governments do austerity measures before) but would have paens to Marx and Leninism taught in our schools, you’d take that deal in a heartbeat?

                  1. Yes. They already teach do that in schools anyway.

                    1. They teach Marxism/Lennism in schools?

                      Horsehit.

                    2. Horseshit, that is.

    2. “Unless you can show me that Perry plans to pursue policies based upon his religious views that cannot be justified in any other way”

      What a goofy standard…I’m sure you apply this one across the board!

      1. There is nothing goofy about it all. If a President said “God demands that we end this evil drug war”, you wouldn’t support him? I would. I don’t think God much cares about the drug war one way or another. But I haven’t spoken to God, what do I know? What I do know is ending the drug war is a great idea and I am fine with using God as a justification to do it if that is what works for some.

      2. And of course, I suppose you are appalled by people like Martin Luther King calling on God as a justification to end segregation. I suppose atheists should have never supported him since they couldn’t possibly agree with his personal justification.

        1. I actually think there can be a principled difference between people using the Bible as a guide on social and moral matters and people who use it to decide scientific matters.

          1. Racism was considered to be very scientific back in the day.

            1. Well, when MLK was talking it was pretty discredited scientifically, but I get your point. Stephen Jay Gould wrote about how one reason William Jennings Bryant opposed evolution was that he felt it would bolster eugenics and other things he opposed on Biblical grounds.

              Still, I think it can be argued that racism, which involved moral and political matters just as much as any scientific question, is far different than “how old is the earth.”

              1. The point is MNG, you can do the right thing for the wrong reason. I think you should judge someone by what they want to do not so much why they want to do it. If a liberal said God told us we need to keep the safety net for the poor, why would you vote against him?

                1. I don’t find Perry suspect because he wants to lower taxes for Biblical reasons, I find him suspect because he seems to think evolution is not true and the earth is only 6,000 years old.

                  Here’s an analogy. If a liberal told me that he simply refused to believe in any of the evidence that IQ is to a significant degree inherited because the Bible says everyone is equal and therefore that can’t be true, I’d think they were just as goofy.

                  1. But you would vote for them if they were going to enact policies you agreed with. If you didn’t, you would be a fool.

                    1. If the things he was pushing for were that much more important to me, yeah, but my point is simply that this kind of thing would be a negative to me that he would have to outweigh. I wouldn’t try to defend it or play it down.

                    2. That is just it. i don’t fucking care about evolution in schools. It is an absolutely tiresome and annoying debate on both sides.

                    3. Why don’t you care whether children are learning about biology?

      3. If you refuse to support any candidate who is not 100% in line with your own personal views on the subject of religion – then who is the religious zealot?

      4. What a goofy standard…I’m sure you apply this one across the board!

        Of course they wouldn’t.

        They would never in a million years apply the same standard to a Scientologist.

        Or to some guy who worshipped magic crystals.

        Hell, most of them wouldn’t even apply the same standard to an atheist.

        Don’t get me wrong – it’s probably the right standard to apply. I just agree with you that if it were a different religion, or no religion at all, we’d be told that it was in fact relevant for one reason or another.

  14. HopeFaith and Change.

    1. …or changed faith (D2R)

    2. For a good time call Hope and Faith; reasonable rates for clean white guys and a 5% discount before 2PM!

  15. Jesus He knows me, and He knows I’m right…

    1. That is because he loves you. Just not as much as he loves me.

      1. Red and yellow, blackBlack and white, we are precious in His sight.

        1. Red or yellow, black or white, they all scream when they ignite.

  16. The left’s belief in the efficacy of government control of virtually every aspect of life is based on nothing more than faith and constitutes a “religion” in and of itself.

    And their goo-goo religion is far more intrusive and harmfull than the mainline established religions.

  17. This is a good example of what Politico mentioned the other day, Perry causes head explosions in lefties. Milbank is an establishment water carrier for Obama and all good left thought and the idea of Perry being in power in DC is enough for him to say whatever it takes needed to stop that from happening.

    I’m coming around a bit to my Sarah Palin attitude towards Perry – I don’t much like his politics but damn if he doesn’t drive the right people freaking bug nuts.

    Judge a person by their enemies and Perry is a winner.

    1. The only problem is that it is hard to tell what he really thinks. They hate him because he is “the other” to them. He doesn’t kiss their ass and isn’t one of them. But that cuts both ways. He could be just as big of a crony capitalist liberal bastard as Obama and they would still hate him. So it is hard to judge Perry the President by those who hate him.

    2. Uh, no. Liking someone because you hate the people that hate him/her is just another retarded version of partisan politics, and equally as fucking stupid.

      1. Epi, remember me telling you that about half of the posters here GOP shills? Take a look at this thread, it’s a perfect example of this. About half of the people cannot simply condemn Perry for saying stupid things. They have to either defend him or say “yeah he’s bad, but that Obama/liberal/etc is worse!” An actual libertarian should be able to say something bad about a rising GOPer without having to always add “but he’s still better than….”

        1. YEEEEEEEEE HAAAAAAAAAAAW! (shoots six guns in the air)

        2. Just because you don’t like the guy doesn’t mean every criticism of him is valid. If you want to call Perry a phony and a slimball crooked politician, you won’t get much argument from me from what I have seen. But calling him a theocrat seems pretty stupid.

          1. Perry is a slimball.

  18. Why waste out time on this? The big question of the day is why would anybody complain about Chaz Bono being invited to dancing with the stars? I have never watched this retards on parade show, but I will most certainly watch this! I tremble for my country when I reflect that god has a sense of humor.

    1. I tremble for my country when I reflect that god has a sense of humor.

      Huh?

      1. Bad TJ pun. Sorry.

    2. Who is Chaz Bono?

      1. Not little Chasity who we all loved on The Sonny and Cher Comedy Hour.

        1. Oh that Bono. I thought he was the lead singer from U2’s son.

          1. that Bono only uses one name

      2. Are you serious?

    3. I’m suing that show for false advertising…Stars ? I didn’t see any stars.

      Now Cheryl Burke, the dancer…totally worth watching.

      1. Hope Solo is worth watching.

        1. Naked. On my bed. Face down in the pillow, ass up in the air. NOT dancing.

          1. She is hot and she has a cool name.

  19. I am beginning to like Perry…not enough to ever vote for him mind you…but i like the fact that he is a complete Machiavellian slime ball.

    Reason has not covered it but apparently Perry supported Al Gore over AGW and supported Hilarycare.

    It seems he is perfectly willing to shift with the political winds. Clinton was able to do that and we ended up with a budget surplus at the end of his 8 years.

    1. I will take someone doing the right thing for the wrong reasons.

    2. Perry was a run-of-the-mill Texas Democrat back when you just about had to be a Democrat to do well in Texas politics. And he did what Democrats do, like support Democrat candidates.

      Then, that changed. And so did Perry! By a bizarre coincidence, he became a Republican when you just about had to be a Republican to do well in Texas politics! What a stroke of luck for Rick Perry, no?

      1. surely just a coincidence! /sarc

      2. I think there was some kind of revival where W led Perry into the Guadalupe, dunked him and baptized him a Republican. His hair as he came up out of the water was still perfect.

        1. You know who else woke up from being a Dem…. Ronald Reagan. He had some regressive views, but have we ever had better?

  20. Is Jesse Jackson a theocrat? What about MSNBC’s newest host: the Rev. Al Sharpton?

    It’s cool when Joe Lieberman and Keith Ellison go all religious and whatnot. Those religions — Judaism and Islam — are cool, especially the hats.

    But those icky rightwing Christians. Yuck! I mean, have you seen the pope’s hat? Ewwww!

    1. Algore and the Church of Man-Bear-Pig…

    2. I approve this message.

    3. I hear Obama is a big fan of Jesus as well.

  21. Hope he knocks off the televangelist shtick once he locks up the bible belt because I don’t care for his rhetoric in the slightest .

  22. I’m glad to hear that the BSA has gone back to being a private club. Those years spent as a public religious club were really unseemly. Guess they’ll have to find their own place to meet now, but freedom isn’t free.

  23. Perry is a decent politician who is smart enough to let his supporters and apologists argue for the full-on theocrat stuff.

  24. On the broader subject of religion, notions of morality, and the writing of laws, we all get our ideas of what we ought and ought not to do from someplace. If a politician believes it should be illegal to steal and to murder people, I agree with them – and I don’t care if they got those ideas from the Ten Commandments or from Ayn Rand. If they think it should be illegal for me to buy beer on Sunday, then I disagree with them and I would be unlikely to vote for them. HOWEVER, if they simply SAY that people like me should not buy beer on Sunday, but REFRAIN from passing/signing LAWS on the subject, then there is no problem. This much is addressed in the article.

    However, there is more going on. We a country with some problems. The younger portion of the population includes disturbing percentages of barely-literate imbeciles. The older baby-boomer portion of the population is a politically-influential advocate of the Social Security Ponzi scheme that is bankrupting the country. S&P has downgraded our federal government’s credit rating. Government routinely ignores the constitutional limits on its power and it continues to engage in croney-capitalism, to devastating economic effect. Government, and in particular the Supreme Court for over a century, has facilitated a corruption of society that has produced this, but society has allowed and embraced that corruption.

    People who vote for socialists and kleptocrats do so because they don’t think that taking things from other people through the arm of government is wrong. They think it is perfectly okay. They are like some attorneys who see life not as an experience in which there is an absolute right and wrong, but rather as a big game of some sort in which there are simply winners and losers, with honest folks mostly among the losers. This is a moral code that can lead only to catastrophe. It has produced our current predicament. Championing freedom without morality is essentially championing freedom with responsibility – a condition which is impossible to maintain for all citizens over a long period of time.

    Therefore, it is not only acceptable that people with moral convictions participate in discussion of national direction, but it is IMPERATIVE that they do so. Not everything should be legislated – that’s certainly true. But many self-proclaimed “libertarians” seem to desire not only freedom from government intrusion, but also from open criticism – and THAT is neither realistic nor productive. Should the government be able to force you to wear a seatbelt? Hell no. Any doughnut-eating moron that pulls you over for not wearing one is wasting oxygen with breath they take. But is it utterly stupid for you to NOT wear a seatbelt? Yes. It is moronic. Should half of the prison population be made up of people who get high? Of course not. But my opinion of junkies is especially low – losers, self-destructive numbskulls. Just because I am in favor of decriminalizing their activity does not in ANY way mean that I agree with their activity.

    However, much of the criticism of conservative politicians who talk openly about their religious views seems to be geared toward wanting to not only be free of government intrusion, but of public criticism. To those folks, I say, “Get thicker skin.”

    1. I meant to write, “Championing freedom without morality is essentially championing freedom WITHOUT responsibility – a condition which is impossible to maintain for all citizens over a long period of time.”

  25. Of Course Gardasil Rick is a good guy. It’s not like forcing every teenage girl in Texas Public Schools to receive Gardasil(after receiving money for it) is anywhere near like making people purchase Healthcare Insurance plans.

  26. “Perry, for example, thinks the Boy Scouts, as a private organization, should be free to discriminate based on sexual orientation. So do I; that is in fact the libertarian position, based on property rights, freedom of contract, and freedom of association.”

    The Boy Scouts, I’m sure, are a nonprofit corporation, that is, an artificial person, endowed by the state with all sorts of privileges that ordinary people don’t have, like the “right” not to pay taxes. Should the Boy Scouts be given all the advantages of a nonprofit and also be allowed to discriminate on the basis of race? If I started up a “Boy Scouts Camp,” complete with “official” Scout insignia, the Boy Scouts would sue me, and they’d win. But why should they be allowed to do that? What happened to my “right”?

    If you own land, you can kill the rats in your barn, but you can’t hold a bull fight or a dog fight there. You can’t slaughter horses there, even if you own them. Private property, nonprofit and for profit corporations, etc. are all creations of the state and can be defined as narrowly or broadly as the state wishes.

  27. Ron Paul has explained Why Austrian economics works to the satisfaction of millions or registered voters – so well I have personally spent thousands of dollars helping bring his dream to fruition. What has been touched upon less frequently is WHY we should give it a chance instead of continuing down the Keynesian road to serfdom. You may be unaware that one earner could support quite a large family when we were on the gold standard – it is only the ‘progress’ we’ve experienced that makes it so a home with two wage earners can still be below the poverty line. You may also be unaware that since the FED was established in 1913, the dollar (formerly 1/20 ounce of gold) is now 1/1800 ounce of gold. That’s right, the value of a dollar has decreased 90 TIMES. There are more people on food stamps now than there were wage earners in 1913. The number of unemployed is over 22% (shadowstats.com). Where in these numbers do you see a shining ray of hope that we are doing the correct thing? These numbers could hardly be worse, even given some national disaster. They’re the result of us applying the Keynesian methodology (stimulus and deficit spending) – we’ve been doing it since 1971. That’s when we went off the gold standard, which made this spending possible. Trillions of dollars in stimuli have NOT worked. Now it’s time to try something different so we can verify experimentally which course of action is the correct one. You can’t know until you compare.

  28. So he’s a theocratic, libertarian, right-wing, conservative, neo-fascist thug? Seriously, do you liberals even try any more or do you just go back to elementary school and call people names?

    1. Names like socialist, Marxist, Muslim, left-wing thug?

  29. Hi All,

    I’m just looking thought the news from Google News on a Saturday morning and noticing that though Ron Paul consistently places in the top three in the polls, he is not represented at all in the news rankings. You might not notice this yourself if you have a Ron Paul section in your news. More likely, you don’t and therefore are not aware of the high volume of Ron Paul related news available online. I just want to remind people that you can plug the phrase “Ron Paul” into Google News and they will offer to make a Ron Paul section of the news for you. It’s in your financial best interest to make sure you keep on top of his activity. I invested as Ron Paul suggested and have been up over 50% a year. If he’s elected, my tax rates will plummet. I’ll also be free again, which is something no one in America has been since 2001. Patriot Act made us all expendable by just calling us a ‘terrorist’. How many times you heard the phrase ‘domestic terrorist’ lately? That phrase means no right to a trial, no habeus corpus, nothing. Lock you in a hole until hell freezes over with NO right to attorney. Ron Paul wants to give your freedom back – show some spine and take it!

    Vote Vertebrate – Ron Paul 2012!

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