March 24, 2006

Apocalyptic Times: A Must Read

The other day I asked:
So is Bush a corporate billionaire crony pushing his own globalization agenda by manipulating gullible believers, or is he himself a gullible believer being cynically manipulated by corporate billionaire cronies like Rumsfeld and Cheney?
Today, Maureen Farrell helps provide some answers:
A few years ago, a Time/CNN poll found that that more than a third of Americans search the news for signs of the Apocalypse. Since Sept. 11, they've not had to look very hard...

While the link between the Bush White House and the Religious Right was clear from the start, the connection between those actually rooting for the End Times and Mr. Bush was not. Before the war in Iraq, President Jimmy Carter explained why the majority of Christian churches were against military intervention (except for those literally praying for Armageddon), but few knew why Mr. Bush was shunning mainstream churches in favor of the more rapture-minded.

"Some wonder if the president might be influenced by evangelical teachings that envision an end-of-the-world battle between Israel and its enemies. It would be dangerous for a president to take a particular theology like that and apply it to world events," former Nixon aide Charles Colson mused, a little more than a year before the Guardian reported that "US Christian fundamentalists are driving Bush's Middle East policy."

Ultimately, however, an e-mail unearthed by the Village Voice proved how entrenched fundamentalists actually are. "Most of all, apparently, we're not supposed to know the National Security Council's top Middle East aide consults with apocalyptic Christians eager to ensure American policy on Israel conforms with their sectarian doomsday scenarios," Rick Perlstein wrote, in an article that should scare the bejesus out of everyone.

... there is something unique about our post-9/11 world that not only lends itself to bizarre supernatural assumptions, but the idea that such superstitions, if acted upon, could lead to self-fulfilling prophecies.

"For the first time in our history, ideology and theology hold a monopoly of power in Washington," Bill Moyers wrote.

In other words, prepare for the news to get even weirder.

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