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Michael Brendan Dougherty‘s analysis of the Religious Right and its impact on the GOP makes several convincing points. One, white Evangelical Protestants, who constitute almost a third of the electorate, contribute mass support for signature neoconservative policies that neoconservatives could not generate without this assistance. Two, Evangelicals, and more generally the Religious Right, are disproportionately present among the Tea Party voters, and what often looks like a mass movement directed specifically against higher taxes and Obamacare is in fact the Religious Right in a different form. Three, in their pro-Zionist politics, Evangelical Protestants match if not exceed in their fervor even the neocons and (if humanly possible) the Wall Street Journal. Evangelicals are perpetually behind the Israeli Right, and even if they elicit undisguised contempt from their allies, the American Israeli lobby and its Middle Eastern agenda can depend on their unqualified support.

But I do not ascribe the zeal of the Evangelicals to their Protestant Christianity or to their lack of a natural law tradition, pace Darryl Hart, who has been arguing this point for years. Like their hero George W. Bush, the members of the Religious Right whom I’ve known are intellectually lazy. They prefer sloganeering to thinking. In this way they ‘re like the Republicans I’ve encountered, people who recite party lines and who cheer for those carrying the proper party label. I’m also not sure that their anti-abortion enthusiasm is as great as Michael suggests. Pat Robertson touted Giuliani as a presidential candidate on his television program, despite Giuliani enthusiastic advocacy of a pro-choice position throughout his career. Robertson liked Giuliani because he was good on Israel. Leaders of the Religious Right have also had many nice things to say about Joe Lieberman, whose Zionism and advocacy of foreign wars seem to trump his support for third-term abortion. Bill Bennett backed Lieberman for president in 2008, without forfeiting (as far as I know) his credentials as an opponent of abortion beloved to the Religious Right.

Moreover, when the GOP occupied the White House, the Religious Right was not exactly out ahead the crowd attacking Bush’s (record) spending. Fiscal waste only became a vexing problem for this group when the Democrats took power.

The RR, everything being equal, act like white-bread Republicans. They vote predictably for the GOP and can be counted on to second the party’s neoconservative advisors. They are opposed to abortion but GOP party leaders and advisors can please their followers by making rhetorical gestures and by appointing federal judges who will chip away at Roe v Wade. The Religious Right’s opposition to gay rights may be less of an obstacle. Although by now quite a few Republican politicians (not to mention neoconservative journalists) have openly endorsed gay people serving in the military, this position has not cost the GOP Religious Right support.

Presumably as long as we plunge into military adventures to help Israel or to advance “human rights,” the Religious Right will go along with piecemeal concessions to the social Left. Indeed having the GOP embrace a sufficiently pro-democracy foreign policy may count for more with our family-value crowd than what Republicans champion domestically. In this respect the religious Right is simply mimicking the neoconservative masters of the GOP media. As a newspaper columnist, I regularly receive letters from Religious Right enthusiasts that state all the predictable Fox News/GOP positions. One particularly exasperated member of this group has warned me that I may be going to Hell for disagreeing with “such a wise man as Charles Krauthammer.” Like other neocons, it seems that Krauthammer has a direct pipeline to Heaven.

My biggest problem with Michael’s interpretation, however, is his attribution of a biblically driven ethic to the Religious Right that defies human reasoning. In this case we are speaking specifically about Evangelicals, as opposed to Catholics and traditional Reformed Protestants, who do not operate from this moral perspective. Unfortunately there is nothing identifiably biblical about the way the Religious Right formulates most of its positions. What in the Old or New Testament requires Sarah Palin to be in favor of lowering taxes or noticing the government’s deficit spending when the Democrats are in office? Are these decisions the result of reading certain biblical passages—or are they driven by partisan considerations and the desire to win office as a member of a party that claims counterfactually to be “getting government off our backs”? Where in the Bible do we discover that the US should wage wars against other countries, not because as in Judges they are idolatrous but because they do not grant women equal rights? Pray tell, how did the war in Iraq help Christian interests in that country, let alone fulfill any biblical precept?

Michael would be on firmer ground if he pointed out that the Religious Right favors a foreign policy that has little to do with the Bible. Once we get beyond the numerology and the end-of-days narrative peddled by the Dispensationalists, which not all Evangelicals in any case seem interested in, we find at work a progressivist ideology. Richard Gamble addresses this human rights-enthusiasm in his monograph 正义之战, which lays out the ideology of global democratic transformation that influenced American Protestantism on the eve of the Great War. At this time Biblical eschatology was reshaped into an imperative to spread our democratic way of life beyond our borders; and in World War One the same secularized eschatology was put into play in opposing the enemies of “Anglo-American democracy” in the form of the Central Powers.


American exceptionalism, the doctrine of human rights, and the idea of historical progress were joined to produce a bastardized Protestant Christianity; and the eventual result was the liberal internationalism that Republicans, and especially the Evangelical ones, have signed on to. Thanks to the neoconservative-guided Republican Party, those who are the true descendants of the progressive Protestants of the early twentieth century have found a home, and it is one they are not likely to leave in the foreseeable future. The recycled Trotskyism of the neocons and the global democratic boosterism of the GOP presidential frontrunners are giving the Religious Right what they want programmatically.

But it is not the Evangelicals but the neocons in the media and in think-tanks who “drive the discourse.” What the religious Right does is deliver homilies on “values,” budgets, and the right of the unborn. They then go on to support the Bushes, Doles, and McCains whom their party provides them with in presidential races. Although in primaries they sometimes kick up against RINOs, once the nomination is settled, they typically rally around GOP candidates, and usually attribute conservative virtues to those their party gives them as leaders. In this respect Evangelicals are like divine –right monarchists, who accept any sovereign that Providence sends them. The idea that the neocons and party bosses are quaking in their boots lest this Stimmvieh (voting cattle) desert their banners seems hardly credible. The people Michael writes about are likely to go on voting for the party of Dole, Bush, Cal Thomas, and Charles Krauthammer, unless the world does suddenly come to an end.

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  1. cackcon 说:

    It really is too bad your better, more narrowly-constrained points are drowned in the paint cast by such an overly-broad brush in this piece.

  2. Anonymous • 免责声明 说:

    “Like their hero George W. Bush, the members of the Religious Right whom I’ve known are intellectually lazy. ”

    This is as true of their approach to the Bible as it is of their approach to foreign policy, or even their nominally “core” moral issues.

    I pray for the day that a charismatic preacher will appear who combines the oratorical and forensic power of Cicero with rigorous Biblical scholarship. It is depressing to contemplate the crap that these people take for revealed truth at the moment – all with the publicly hearty (and privately contemptuous) approval of the Neoconservatives.

  3. TomB 说:

    Brilliant! When I first read that “God’s Brew” article by Dougherty I thought it was one of the most important political pieces I’d read in a long time analyzing just what the hell has been going on with “the Right.” Struck me as a freaking beyond-great piece of good old-time hard-thinking analytical work whose importance just could not be underestimated.

    And now here’s Professor Gottfried noting it, and, via his comments about the neo-cons, just adding to its explanatory powers in addition to whacking out the lapidary statement that “[i]n this respect Evangelicals are like divine –right monarchists, who accept any sovereign that Providence sends them.”

    Brilliant again!

    Upshot (to me at least): If you wanna change what passes for the modern “Right,” look at getting to the Evangelicals. They’ve been hoodwinked beyond belief by their leaders and the neo-cons.

    Jeez am I ever glad to see that Dougherty piece not sink without a trace. Is really powerfully smart and important I think. Should absolutely be kept in the forefront of the mind as one watches what’s going on in the future. Sure clears out lots of the confusion.

  4. This is an excellent piece. One can only hope, however faintly, that there are sufficient numbers of American Christians (including Protestants) left who may one day rise up and reject the welfare-warfare state that gains sustenance from the Religious Right’s unholy alliance with the GOP. In retrospect, it is sobering to recall just how few evangelical Christians worried about the longterm impact of this alliance when it first took shape in the 1970s. Harry Jaffa and other neoconservatives openly urged evangelicals in the Moral Majority to sign up as members of “God’s party,” the GOP, a brazen example of Caesaropapism that provoked little comment in evangelical circles at the time. The future seems very grim when young evangelicals are flocking to Obama while older evangelicals stand firm with socially libertine neoconservatives. Are there any Christians in sizeable numbers left in America that will stand up and reject both imperial parties?

  5. I join in the kudos displayed for the Dougherty piece and Gottfried’s comments upon it. To my mind, this discussion has many points in common with frequent American Conservative contributor Bill Kauffman’s AIN’T MY AMERICA: THE LONG NOBLE HISTORY OF ANTIWAR CONSERVATISM AND MIDDLE-AMERICAN ANTI-IMPERIALISM, in that America once had a genuinely cranky, fiery and scripturally rigorous religious Right, which abhorred war and viewed it as the Devil’s work, interfering with getting your crops in by taking your sons away and corrupting them with syphilitic whores trailing along behind the marching army. I doubt, however, that there will ever be any “getting to” the modern hoodwinked Evangelicals. They’re a lost cause.

  6. tbraton 说:

    “One particularly exasperated member of this group has warned me that I may be going to Hell for disagreeing with “such a wise man as Charles Krauthammer.” Like other neocons, it seems that Krauthammer has a direct pipeline to Heaven.”

    You poor man. That seems like a dreadfall fate. I am going to start saying a prayer for you each night before I go to bed. Oops! I just remembered that I am a non-believer, so that wouldn’t do you any good unless there turns out not to be a God. And, if that’s the case, it also won’t do you any good, but it does eliminate the possibility of Hell.

  7. I thank those who appreciated my comments but am puzzled by my critic, who complains that I am painting with overly broad strokes. How so? Are there in fact members of the Religious Right who do not beat the drum for military engagements intended to spread democracy? And while I’m at it, why don’t these supposedly serious Christian loudly protest the fate of those other Christians being brutalized and killed after their countries were liberated from anti-human rights governments in Iraq, Egypt, and elsewhere? It seems that the Christian Right is more interested in launching new wars for democracy than it is in noticing the slaughter of their coreligionists in places in which American intervention has already occurred.

  8. Mike 说:

    As an Evangelical, one thing I find consistently misunderstood by most people is the relationship of dispensationalism to foreign policy. For the uninitiated, dispensationalism is an understanding of the Bible that sees God’s redemptive plan being worked out in different ways to different peoples throughout history. This, in itself, in not a controversial idea. Even the competing understanding of Covenant Theology seeks to understand the Bible’s revelation of redemptive history in a particular way. According to classical dispensationalism, the Jewish people are recognized as God’s chosen earthly people, the ones through whom the world’s Redeemer would come and fulfill salvation as well as the covenant promises. So, yes, the Jewish nation is a special group of people that still have a grand future ahead of them despite their present difficulties.

    That being said, an interventionist foreign policy is not a logical entailment of dispensationalism. Dispensationalism does not dictate that any particular country of largely Gentile people support all the actions of a conservative faction of the modern day state of Israel. Several reasons bear this out. First, there is a difference between the nation of Jewish people and the state of Israel as it exists today. The former is an ethnic group while the latter is a political entity, and the two are not identical. Overlap in some respects, yes, but they are not synonymous.

    Second, dispensationalism does not provide a blueprint for foreign policy. There is nothing about dispensationalism that says a particular nation has to always support the Jewish nation – let alone the state of Israel – even if their actions are unjust. For such support would undermine justice itself. We, as the United States, should not support unjust actions anywhere in the world, period, and to offer tacit or even open support for such initiatives would be wrong on our part.

    Third, I would argue that noninterventionism actually fits better with dispensationalism than does interventionism. For if, as Charles Ryrie, one of the most articulate defenders of dispensationalism says, dispensationalism sees all of human history as revolving around the theme of God’s glory, would it not be more glorious to God to follow a foreign policy that coincides with the natural law God has established? Having a foreign policy of noninterventionism takes justice between nations seriously, reflecting a moral principle Jesus originally gave in the context of personal conduct: Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. If we followed this simple teaching, our foreign policy would be far less aggressive! Further, if God is the one who’s glory history is designed to showcase, should we not expect God’s Messiah Himself to be the one to vanquish the evil one someday when He returns? There is no where in the Bible where any particular nation is charged by God to unilaterally back and execute what a particular faction of a political entity with a Jewish face to it does. Rather, by exercising a noninterventionist foreign policy, it would be a way to leave God’s role for vanquishing evil and setting up His kingdom to God, not to the United States.

    In the end, although the usual line of thinking, whether its in theological or political contexts, is that dispensationism requires an interventionist foreign policy for the US on Israel’s behalf, such thinking is fallacious. Noninterventionism fits better with dispensationalism – and costs us a lot less, too!

  9. I agree with Mike that noninterventionism could be supported by most evangelicals (see my post after the Dougherty article). Most evangelicals are motivated by social and cultural issues. Unfortunately, politicians who support those issues (or give lip service to them) get a pass on foreign policy. The fact that Obama’s Libyan intervention or Clinton’s Bosnian intervention didn’t get much evangelical support prove this point. We need more Rand Paul type candidates who combine the best elements of conservatism and libertarianism. They are (hopefully) the wave of the future.

  10. Ken Hoop 说:

    Mike’s strained argument that Dispensationalism doesn’t fit with interventionism would be convincing if he could name a minority party of TV/radio/cyber media dispensationalists
    who see Israel’s theft of Palestinian land as fulfillment of Bible prophecy, believe that theft must be maintained, but oppose and have opposed the US subsidizing it and/or fighting wars against Israel’s Arab enemies the past decades.

    A minority party? One,perhaps?

  11. tbraton 说:

    “And while I’m at it, why don’t these supposedly serious Christians loudly protest the fate of those other Christians being brutalized and killed after their countries were liberated from anti-human rights governments in Iraq, Egypt, and elsewhere?”

    Professor Gottfried, I believe you provided the answer to your question in your main blog: “Like their hero George W. Bush, the members of the Religious Right whom I’ve known are intellectually lazy.” With intellectual laziness goes ignorance. They simply don’t know the actual history of their own Christian religion which goes back 2000 years. Hell, George W. Bush was ignorant about the history of his own country which goes back only a little more than 200 years (excluding the colonial period, of course).

    BTW let me add my compliments for your finely written piece.

  12. @Mike —

    Would to God that more Evangelicals believed as you do. Thanks for that exposition of what seems to a non-Evangelical such as myself to be a highly sane and moral position. Unfortunately, it often seems that a great many so-called Evangelicals’ position starts with a desire to bomb the crap out of someone, then comes up with some pseudo-scriptural justification for that.

  13. TomB 说:

    What I’d like to see now is someone penning an open letter to America’s Evangelicals along the lines of …

    “Your leadership, while no doubt mainly well-meaning, but cynically backed by any number of intensely self-interested others, have now for years been telling you … X about the following issues….

    And here are the questions you ought to be asking yourselves about both the rightness and the wisdom of continuing to support X….”

    Go down the list then, maybe about whether Evangelicals, clearly on the losing end of the culture war, really really want to empower the government to decide who can marry who.

    About whether Evangelicals really really want to see their hard-earned tax money and their sons and daughters sent off to fight for some other country’s interests.

    About … a short, carefully thought-through number of fundamental things that have so made the Right into what it is today.

    About … how they and their leaders have been cynically used by both politicians and those self-interested others.

    About … how one can sympathize with their feelings of having their religion and morals and way of life being under attack, but how God gave us brains too as well as a sense of right and wrong so that reasoning as well as simply believing can be thought of as a divinely-imposed duty as well.

    And then go and get as many signatures as you can of good, prominent men and women of the real Right to same and start publicizing it around. Especially through the churches to the greatest extent possible of course.

    Make it as short and simple and powerful as possible. Maybe, just maybe, a tiny spark of …a fire in the mind that is independent thinking will grow and and turn out to mean something.

  14. RKU 说:

    保罗·格特弗里德(Paul Gottfried): I’m also not sure that their anti-abortion enthusiasm is as great as Michael suggests. Pat Robertson touted Giuliani as a presidential candidate on his television program, despite Giuliani enthusiastic advocacy of a pro-choice position throughout his career.

    Actually, the evidence may be much stronger than that. I remember a few years ago Robertson happened to get a little careless on TV and said he personally supported the forced-abortion policies of the Chinese government, which made sense because China was over-crowded. Now it seems to me this tends to raise all sorts of doubts whether Robertson (and perhaps some of his other ranking Evangelical colleagues) really do believe that abortion violates Divine Law.

    Unless I’m mistaken, Protestant clergymen never used to care much about abortion until a few decades ago, unlike Catholics, who always condemned it (along with birth control). I’m not exactly sure what changed, but I doubt it was the text of the Protestant Bible…

  15. LarryS 说:

    As a former dispensational Christian Zionist I believed that Genesis 12:3 said that whoever blesses Israel will be blest and whoever curses Israel will be cursed. Then I read it for myself and discovered that the promise is to Abram; not every Jew who ever lived or even a people or a country called Israel.

    I no longer believe that the creation of the modern, secular state called Israel is fulfillment of end-times prophecy. But I’m in the minority among the members of the Religious Right I know.

  16. Anonymous • 免责声明 说:

    I recommend we engage our Evangelical brothers and sisters instead of declaring them lost. If you engage them with the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell and our support for building nations of Islamic Republics, Iraq/Afghanistan, they can be jolted back to non-interventionist coherence. Top it off with the atomization of the military nuclear family by the War on Terror (the divorce rate of military couples is stratospheric), in addition to the suicide rate of military members and their family dependents (which the military protects with a zeal reserved for the nuclear launch codes), along with the displacement/dismemberment of the Christian communities in our liberated Middle Eastern lands, and you can electroshock them into a rational discussion of the merits and crimes of the War on Terror. They are not lost and there is hope. If we can harness the Evangelical fervor for war, for anti-war we will change the GOP from within and the neo-cons will never know what hit them.

  17. Anonymous • 免责声明 说:

    The members of the Religious Right whom I’ve known are not intellectually lazy. And I probably have known more people than you; I’m the most social person I know. So I guess you’re wrong!

  18. I enjoyed Gottfreid and Dougherty’s articles, but there was one important facet of the thing that I think they’ve both missed.

    Modern Evangelicals, unlike High or Mainline Churches, despise hierarchies and doctrinal mandates, but local pastors and parishioners still look upwards for spiritual instruction; it’s just human nature. The difference is that instead of seeing a Magesterium or Chatechism when they look up, they see the Christian Publishing Industry. That industry 运行 Evangelicalism as we know it. The publishing houses, which are wholly owned subsidiaries of larger media conglomerates (with executive boards made up of non-Evangelicals) call the tune.

    The two largest publishing houses are Thomas Nelson (owned by the Kohlberg private trust) and Zondervan (owned by Murdoch’s NewsCorp). As with every industry, the market leaders create the paradigm, and they’ve been pushing the same sort of things you’d expect a Fox News sister company to push. Add in the necessity of catering to the largest single segment (the Southern Baptists, arguably the most militaristic of the subgroups), and you’ve got the exact sort of rotten stew that you’d expect.

    Letting non-Christians market, edit, and publish your theology books is a bit of a dead end, as it turns out. Evangelicals need to create their own media, wholly owned and free from outside interests. That alone wouldn’t improve things, but it might allow for a free conversation to take place, and the results of that conversation might improve things considerably.

  19. RKU wrote, “Unless I’m mistaken, Protestant clergymen never used to care much about abortion until a few decades ago, unlike Catholics, who always condemned it (along with birth control). I’m not exactly sure what changed, but I doubt it was the text of the Protestant Bible…”

    I think that had a lot to do with the eschatological (end times) views of amillennialism (traditional Protestants) and premillennial dispensationalism (Evangelicals) held by most American Christians. Most variants of both views discouraged social activism over the past century, since the world was going to continue to get worse anyway, accompanied by an unavoidable decline of Christianity. However, there came a point where those Christians felt like they had to enter the societal fray and “fight” for victory in the short term even if they were destined to lose in the long term.

    There is a third eschatological view among a minority of traditional Protestants (including myself), postmillennialism, which states that Christianity will inexorably win in the long term, spreading across and dominating the world before Christ returns. Due to that mission, social activism of some kind by its adherents is a given. I suspect Roman Caholicism has a similiar view of its role in the world.

  20. We should disregard the “three-legged stool model” and think and view of the modern Right as a large pool, with lots of voters who roughly share the same demographics. In the pool are the activists, whether Tea Partiers or those with the mostly “Christian Right” and those activists who support an aggressive U.S. foreign policy. The activists turn out the vote for their respective group in theory, but in reality they share the same values, views and characteristics. That why their views overlap many of times. Often when one activist group is down and other rises to take its place. Thus Tea Partiers (economic) rose up as the religious and the hawkish took a step back in the wake of the failures of the Bush II Administration, whose policies they faithfully supported. But the problem is outside of their own issues of interest, there isn’t much of a chance to think freely on other issues largely becase, as Professor Gottfried said, these groups would rather be intellectually lazy in order to get the support of others within the pool, rather thank think things through. That’s why you get Tea Partiers in some cases supporting NASA of farm subsidies or those favorites limited government calling for a massive military-security-industrial complex. This such co-action may win votes but it’s no way to define oneself completely and thus the confusion and contradictions which surround so much of contemporary conservatism.

  21. cackon: “It really is too bad your better, more narrowly-constrained points are drowned in the paint cast by such an overly-broad brush in this piece.”

    This is so vague and completely lacking in specifics that I am led to imagine that cackon carries this in his paste buffer and inserts it as a comment to everything he reads on the Internet.

  22. Let’s face it: the Cheney-Bush generation of big government conservative, evangelical Judeo-Christian Zionists are defective conservatives, defective Christians, and suffer from defective intellects. Maybe it was all the nuclear testing that went on in this country in the 40’s and 50’s.

    These people are at total odds with the traditional Christendom of Western civilization. They are at total odds with the traditional conservatism that held the day more or less up through Reagan (but yes, was already wavering with Nixon). And they are at total odds with the intellectual foundations at the core of Founders’ conception of liberty.

    With these defectives in charge of the “conservative” movement, it’s no wonder the country has fallen so far, so fast.

    But one word in their defense: with left-wing gangsters, grifters and hustlers already raiding the public coffers to the hilt and setting up their own permanant government class, wasn’t it inevitable that the right would itself end up raiding the public coffers via military jobs programs, general militarism and the military-industrial complex if only to keep the socialists from taking over the government entirely? Isn’t so much of this warmongering “progressivism” on the right merely the rationale for their own plunder of the public coffers as a response to the left-wing grab-fest?

  23. Nergol 说:

    C. S. Lewis once said that the way to separate a Christian from Christ was to make him a “Christian and…”. And what? And anything – just so long as it was something else to believe in, or something else to be loyal to. Eventually that other thing will have equal footing with Christ, and in the end will even be elevated above Him. American Evangelicals long ago became “Christians and…”. And what? And Americans, which seems harmless enough at first. And yet eventually it morphs into belief in the redemptive power of the nation and its ideas; first on an equal footing with, then indistinguishable (in their minds) from, and eventually elevated above that of Christ. The nation redeems with its system (democracy, secularism, capitalism), which it spreads through its army. This is what Evangelicals have come to believe in; and it has successfully separated them from Christ, and left them lost.

  24. @Nergol —


    American evangelicals’ reverence for the military strikes me as idolatry. When I hear someone say, “I support the troops,” what I hear them saying is, “I worship Death.”

  25. Anonymous • 免责声明 说:

    Some of this is the ongoing effects of frontier social leveling, faux populism and instability that was so central to molding the American character. I see many of these groups, particularly the anti-intellectual and working class elements, as the heirs of the crowds that followed ranters and ravers like Shubal Stearns and Lorenzo Dow.

    I am not proud to admit that most of my forefathers were part of those slack-jawed crowds and some of my ancestors were well-known Baptist preachers.

  26. cackcon 说:

    Mr. Gottlieb (Professor?),

    Basically, you combine all adherents and leaders of the so-called “Religious Right” (which you also equate 1:1 with Evangelicals) for purposes of “diagnosing” why these folks back a party that features an increasingly neoconservative foreign policy stance.

    How is this NOT overly broad?

    Let me be more specific. You imply at one point that the RR isn’t all that serious about abortion because Pat Robertson supported Giuliani, perhaps assuming that Robertson speaks for the entire RR on every single issue and endorsement? That, to me, is intellectually lazy.

    Speaking of which, you basically consider RR members and Republicans in general to be intellectually lazy because the ones you’ve known are such. No, that’s not an overly-broad generalization, is it?

    Certainly, Evangelicals are sympathetic to Israel, and some of this comes from placing too much emphasis on the Book of Revelation and the endtimes. Does that alone explain the support for intervention in the Middle East? Probably not, though it’s a significant enough factor I would grant.

    Frankly, the last presidential candidate to receive strong support from the RR was George W. Bush, who ran on a relatively non-interventionist platform (though, granted, he expressed support for Israel).

    The better explanation for the neocon shift seems to me 9/11. I think the RR who supported Bush so strongly were too willing to rally unquestioningly around the flag after that point. Other commentors and writers at this site have already pointed out the uber-patriot problem post-9/11. I happen to think this plays a much greater role in the welfare-warfare expansion than does Israel. But I also believe future GOP coalitions are not likely to look the same because political fault lines are constantly shifting to some degree.

    I’m also not sure I buy the idea of the RR being the logical extension of early 1900s progressive Protestantism. Wouldn’t the mainline Protestant churches better fit that description?

    Finally–and this isn’t coming from someone who tends to be weak-kneed or soft–your article serves no real purpose but to pander to those who share your viewpoint. I happen to think some of the RR will be swayed back toward a more paleoconservative camp some day, but collectively insulting their intelligence and moral integrity sure won’t accomplish anything constructive. How about making your next article an open letter to the RR with some civil discourse to point out the strengths of your beliefs and why they may wish to reconsider their political views? Just a thought…

  27. cackcon 说:

    Mr. Callahan,

    Please see above. And I thank you for your own insightful contribution, which I’m sure cost you considerable time and energy. Do be careful not to swim in the pool for at least 30 minutes after making such a herculean effort.

  28. 正如伟大的格里高利胡德曾经说过的那样:不会为一方的宗教权利和另一方的我们促成单独的和平:




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