Tuesday, December 6, 2011

As Gingrich Takes Center Stage, Questions about Spirituality and Politics Emerge

On the political front in the U.S.:

Jaweed Kaleem labors mightily (and well) to get a fix on Mr. Gingrich's spirituality and the meaning of his spirituality for his politics.

While the political leader of Iowa's rabidly anti-gay religious right movement Bob Vander Plaats announces that "rock-solid" Christians will support Gingrich and give him "the benefit of the doubt."

And while "liberal" Democratic Catholic media maven Michael Sean Winters tells us that the Catholic church is a big church with room for everyone, and Mr. Gingrich's politics ought to be debated, but not his faith.  (Since one can be political and do politics, all the while referencing God and one's faith, but God and one's faith are to be divorced from said politics . . . ?)

And as people who purport to have good sense and strong moral values offer disgraceful cover and shameful excuses for clowns, buffoons, ethics-devoid me-first operators, charlatans using religion to irreligious ends, and outright imbeciles, I agree wholeheartedly with Gary Kamiya when he argues that, with its presidential campaign charade, the GOP has reverted to a "pre-potty trained state," and that, with the current crop of Republican possibles, we're seeing the reassertion of what Richard Hofstadter called the "paranoid strain" in American politics.

And when that strain parades on the national stage of American politics, it never puts on a pretty show.  No more now than during the McCarthy era, the Watergate debacle, the Know-Nothing period, etc., etc.

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