McCain and Able: How the GOP lost the evangelicals in 2008 and put Obama in the White House

 

“For the Lord had regard for Obama and his offering but he did not have regard for McCain and his offering.”

When the McCain-Davis-Black team accepted and then publicly repudiated the recent endorsement of evangelical Christian leaders they broke one of the most powerful laws of modern political life.  You can’t attack evangelical leaders of influence.  It is so tempting.  Some of them are so outrageous.  It wins you so much goodwill with the national media.  But it is a deadly mistake.  Ask “President” Colin Powell or “President” Walter Mondale.  And now McCain has done it twice, once in 2000 and once in 2008. Ouch.  Better to not have the endorsements at all than to have them and reject them.

In the past some targets, like Jerry Falwell, had huge negatives even within their own faith.  But there are two problems in taking them on.  First, born again Christians, like other constituencies, don’t like outsiders attacking their own.  And second, there are just too many born again Christians out there.  Offend only a few and it may be a few too many, especially for a Republican.

Let’s look at the numbers.  Barna now tell us that 42% of all Americans claim to be born again.  In 1976, when Jimmy Carter famously used the born again stick to pole vault into power the number was 32%  When I helped George Herbert Walker Bush garner a record 81% of the born again vote in 1988 it represented 39%.  Most people don’t like those numbers and refuse to believe them.  The Bushes and Clintons have dominated modern American public life for twenty years because they have embraced them and understood them.

Media ignorance of religion in America, worn with a badge, has led to absurd notions.  When the Moral Majority collapsed in 1989, news accounts trumpeted the fall of the religious right.  When the Christian Coalition saw their numbers fade, there was another round of the same.  But insiders knew that the Moral Majority always had been controlled and run by Jerry Falwell, representing only a small part of the born again vote and the Christian Coalition belonged to Pat Robertson and only represented another part.  The question for a politician has always been how many people will stand if I punch this particular button?  And those numbers, the numbers of Americans claiming to be born again, have only been growing.  Even Democrats now end their speeches with “God Bless America,” a part of Reganese language that used to drive the media up the wall.

So why do politicians attack evangelical figures?  Well, because they are immensely unpopular with the non-evangelical public and it wins them instant kudos with the media.  In 1984, we in the Bush campaign obtained a private Gallup survey, commissioned by a major ministry, showing the dangers of associating with almost any evangelical leader of influence.  Billy Graham, the most pristine of them all, was at the time the subject of inquiries over illegally retained nonprofit income and still had a bit of the Nixon taint.  And all religious figures, not just Rev. Wright and Rev. Hagee, all of them, have views that seem irrational or intolerant to outsiders.  Only a few years ago a Catholic believer would be damned to hell for stepping inside a Protestant church.

In the “Herbert” Bush campaign we started our outreach to evangelicals in 1985, even before the candidate was formally in the race.  We called it “building a relationship with evangelicals.”  By 1986 we had finished our work.  George Herbert Walker Bush had met one on one or in small groups with more than one thousand evangelical leaders of influence.  I maintained those relationships for him with correspondence and auto pen and a few non public events but basically the work was done two years before the election.

In 1992, his desperate campaign had Pat Robertson and Pat Buchanan address the national convention, a big mistake.  He went to Bob Jones University, (not on my watch, in 1988 we quietly met the professors at a nearby Holiday Inn,) and appeared the day before election with Jerry Falwell at Liberty University.  It was too little and way too late.

In 2000 George W. Bush, who had been my boss in 1988, knew the importance of the evangelical leaders of influence.  Like Blacks, they do not respond well to mailers or general appeal.  Eventually, no matter what your polls show, they follow their leaders.   If they trust their preachers about eternity, it is no small stretch to take their word about a temporal election.

But “W” couldn’t do the early work we did in 1986 because unlike his father, he was running for re-election as governor of Texas.  He could not afford to appear as a candidate for president and all the early work with evangelicals was put on hold.  By 2000, “W” wisely knew how dangerous it was to have your picture taken with the preachers so close to the general election.  He went over the heads of the leaders of influence and appealed to the born again public. 

In the Iowa GOP debate, when asked who his favorite political philosopher was, he famously ignored the question and answered, “Christ, because he changed my heart.”  But all the mailers and the direct appeal barely worked.  He split the born again vote with Al Gore and four million evangelicals sat at home.  It took a majority on the Supreme Court to win.  The lesson?  You need those leaders of influence.

In the last decade, the only pictures of George W. Bush and preachers have been with Billy Graham and Black clergymen.  And no more of Graham since the Nixon tapes with its anti-Semitism have emerged.  In the pre-Rev. Wright days, black preachers were not offensive to the media.  Governor Bush once called me excitedly after visiting T. D. Jakes church saying that there was a big picture of him on the front page of the newspaper. “Evangelicals – but in a Black church, you can’t beat that.”

But John McCain, who once called evangelical leaders of influence “agents of intolerance” has resorted to no such nuance.  He started out wisely by calling on evangelical leaders two years ago to patch things up.  The media was cynical but at least they saw it as something that had to be done.  The problem was he didn’t do enough.  The formula, at least for a Republican, is early and strong.  Too late and you risk backlash.  Too weak and you don’t get it done, it doesn’t last till election day.

And then McCain’s outreach is being run – by otherwise talented politicians – who have no clue about evangelicals and have demonstrated in the past that they flat out don’t like them.  The Obama-Clinton campaigns know more and have shown it. (The Democrat strategy, btw, is quite the opposite in some respects.  They can court evangelical leaders late.  It only appears to moderate their hard edge liberalism.  No one fears they will be stacking the court with hard line conservatives. LOL.)

It has long been accepted lore that it was Black-Manafort who smeared evangelical congressman John Conlan and forced him out of the Ronald Reagan campaign late in 1979, a move that still smarts with evangelical leaders of influence.  They were right in the middle of the Robert Dole loss in 1996, which stole all the good ideas it could get from evangelicals and then closed the door to any participation.  So it is no big surprise to see them floundering around in this recent comedy of errors.

They should not have waited so long to meet evangelical leaders.  Their meeting should have been personal but private.  They should never have trumpeted public endorsements, ever.  That word gets out on its own among evangelicals who have their own television and print media.  And to do so this late, and this poorly vetted, almost defies comprehension.  And they should not now be attacking the very leaders who endorsed them. 

Evangelicals do not like seeing their own attacked, even if they deserve it.  Hagee’s anti-Catholic remarks, which actually originate with Martin Luther and were popularized in the last century by Fundamentalist, John R. Rice’s dispensationalism, were one thing.  Unbiblical as they may be to this author.  After all, there is a Catholic tradition which sees  Protestant churches as false.  But suggesting that John Hagee is anti-Semitic is not only offensive to evangelicals it is offensive to Jews.  Only the media, completely isolated from religious life in America, can get away with such ignorance.  The public knows better.  It was a mistake to attack Hagee.

Ask Walter Mondale, whose 1984 public attacks on Jerry Falwell became part of his national campaign.  Seemed like a good idea.  Everybody hated Falwell.  But in the general election Mondale lost every state in the union except Minnesota.

Ask “President” Colin Powell who lashed out at evangelical leaders in a Barbara Walter’s interview a few years back.  He was instantly beloved by the media.  At least twice in the last decade Ambassador Powell has had a clear road to the mansion on Pennsylvania Avenue but the road passed through Iowa and evangelical territory.  Polls showed he could win a general election but his exploratory inquiries showed he had killed himself with born againers.

Ask Rudy Giuliani, whose attacks on evangelical leaders made him gun shy of Iowa and forced him to commit to a strategy that could not win.

Hey, ask John McCain, who became the beloved of the national media for trashing evangelicals in 2000 but now faces another media darling and needs those same evangelicals enthusiastically on his side and can’t get them.  “Enthusiastically” being the operative word here.  For the evangelicals are what the old unions were to the Democrat party of the 1950-s and 60’s.  Their private expenditures, voter cards, voter registration efforts represent a built-in infrastructure that dwarfs the GOP.  Almost any one of the six Charismatic ministries now being targeted by Baptist Republican Senator Grassley have mailing lists as large as the National Rifle Association.  You can count them out.

The numbers are still close in this Obama-McCain race.  And the loyalties this time are greatly jumbled.   But that won’t last.  Evangelicals will follow their leaders and many of those leaders will be turning to spiritual matters now and leaving the temporal matters to others.  Millions of dollars in voter identification efforts will be left on the table, unspent.  Some evangelicals will even end up in private photo sessions with Barack Obama at Butler Aviation.  Most will stay home.  They will lose the Supreme Court but hey maybe they can take care of a few other important “non-Republican” things on their agenda, like cleaning up the environment and helping the poor and further reducing racial and sexual prejudice.

 Like it or not, unless something happens to change things, something beyond the control of the media and John McCain, his campaign is now cooked.  Obama only has to avoid public attacks on Christians.  And when he does so privately, he better make sure that this time, all telephone cameras are turned off.

58 Responses to McCain and Able: How the GOP lost the evangelicals in 2008 and put Obama in the White House

  1. […] Denny wrote an interesting post today onHere’s a quick excerptSome evangelicals will even end up in private photo sessions with Barack Obama at Butler Aviation. Most will stay home. They will lose the Supreme Court but hey maybe they can take care of a few other important “non-Republican” things … Read the rest of this great post here […]

  2. Black David says:

    This tone of defeat is rather appalling, Doug. If I’m understanding this correctly, evangelicals are taking their ball and going home in November if the GOP candidate doesn’t mollycoddle them for political gain.

    Evangelicals will act out of spite and ensure that a closet Marxist and world collectivist that thinks its OK to talk to Islamo-fascist dictators is elected President.

    That’s how losers think and act. You aren’t a loser, Doug, I know that, but your fellow evangelicals are disappointing to me. The are offering no willingness to fight for what’s truly important, which is a GOP victory instead of a Marxist one.

    Of course, pay no mind to the fact that McCain is the only candidate who will continue to fight the very savages that have pledged to destroy Israel, a country of significant value to your vision of Armageddon, right?

    I note that you omit any rancor towards the black liberation churches that continue to defile America and its traditions. Are these churches not part of your evangelical movement, or do you have to be of a white persuasion to be included?

    If you are concerned about the Christian “brand” that is portrayed in the media, then it would be wise of you to repudiate these sickos who pervert the idea of religious faith and use the pulpit to advance radical leftist politics.

    Should they not be included in how churches in America should be judged?

    With anything in life, you have to fight for what you want. You want a GOP victory, so you’ve got to fight for it. Stop waiting to be courted. Go out and force McCain’s hand. Convince him that intolerance is not a bad thing. Get out and shout him down. Be lions, not sheep. Convince voters that you may represent traditional America’s last hope.

    Are you up for the challenge? Are you willing to get your hair mussed in the process?

  3. CK says:

    Brother Doug,

    I felt Christians would soon retreat back to the island when the mantra of “compassionate conservative” backfired. It lead to the greatest hoax of all, faith based welfare. (There was no faith to it for it was all tax based.) I hope you are no longer accepting of that tag or any other adjective in front of the word conservative.

    Now that I have that off my chest, you have redeemed yourself and I feel the need to tell you that. Outstanding article. Also outstanding articles on Ron Paul. I would also like to know your opinion on the Constitution Party and whether it has the potential to grow courting evangelicals.

    Black David,

    It’s not a tone of defeat but one of reality. Remember what you McCainanites told the Ron Paulers? Ron Paul doesn’t have a chance. It’s not realistic. He’s not electable. David, you, too, need a reality check. To boot, McCain can’t win especially when the GOP uses the politics of fear. It doesn’t work anymore.

    Evangelicals don’t act out of spite but rather with a regard for the afterlife as Doug pointed out. I am born again. What happens here on earth is not as important as following the dictates of my conscience. What’s truly important is not a GOP victory but the will of G_d. G_d governs in the affairs of men and nations. It is He who, in the words of Holy Writ, raises up nations as HE pleases.

    Unfortunately, we’ve been misled a number of times by false prophets and it’s going to backfire on the GOP.

    Telling me to stop waiting to be courted is absurd. The GOP will court us and will have no choice in the matter. Telling us to fight is equally absurd. How dare you sir. We fight every day for your soul. The battle we fight is far more important. A new season will come again and it will go. A structure will be here long after we are gone. God will indicate our course. You McCainanites fail to realize that the lion will lay down with the lamb.

    Do you want us? Really? Then stop making us into whores. Stop using us for political gain only to turn around and stab us in the back when you get into office. Don’t force us to be political eunuchs. Let our churches be free. Don’t revoke tax exempt status for political sermons. Get rid of campaign finance laws and allow us our speech back…..oh, wait a minute. It’s McCain.

    Finally, there is no attitude of defeat. We need correction like the market place. Our correction is coming in the form of Obama and I personally look forward to and am fighting for, 2012.

  4. Black David says:

    “Remember what you McCainanites told the Ron Paulers? Ron Paul doesn’t have a chance. It’s not realistic. He’s not electable. David, you, too, need a reality check.”

    oh please, people who believe that mythical supernatural beings are guiding their destiny should never employ the word “reality.”

    Ron Paul is a crackpot losertarian with just 14 delegates and you people are too clueless to accept that fact.

    “We fight every day for your soul.”

    Who asked you to do this? I don’t recall asking for you to do this for me.

    “G_d governs in the affairs of men and nations. It is He who, in the words of Holy Writ, raises up nations as HE pleases.”

    So would God vote for a crackpot losertarian like Ron Paul? No, he would vote for the candidate that IS NOT the closet Marxist, which would be John McCain.

    Tell God to ask Doug Wead why as a life long Bush family supporter he would abandon the only candidate that has vowed to continue Bush’s foreign policy in the Middle East, you know, the Holy Land?

    it wouldn’t have something to do with the fact that the Bush family has excommunicated him for leaking those phone interviews with W, hmmm?

    “Let our churches be free.”

    I’ve asked this before and NOT ONE evangelical has been able to answer it. Please explain in great detail how your right to worship and pray in private to your God has been abridged?

    Again, you people act like a bunch of spoiled ingrates who aren’t getting their way. This is the kind of behavior I’d expect from children. Oh that’s right, you’re God’s children, but I never imagined you’d take the term “children” so literally.

    I can’t believe I share citizenship with people like you. You are traitors to your country. God isn’t going to save your pathetic hides when Islamo-fascist savages blow up our cities and kill our loved ones and friends if Barack Hussein Obama and his leftist collectivist goons run this country.

    I, for one, will be gladly picking up my sword and fighting for what belongs to me. How about you? Will you fight or will you run and hide like cowards?

  5. CK says:

    “[m]ythical supernatural beings”

    Who made the world? Or, are you one of those who descends into the insanity of randomnity? I would rather believe as more likely the idea that human conversation is more than blind happenstance.

    “ron paul is a crackpot losertarian”

    When asked if he is a libertarian, Ron Paul has never said, “Yes I am.” He usually responds with, “The Constitution isn’t against libertarian ideas.” Another longshot once said in 1975,

    “If you analyze it I believe the very heart and soul of conservatism is libertarianism. I think conservatism is really a misnomer just as liberalism is a misnomer for the liberals-if we were back in the days of the Revolution, so-called conservatives today would be the Liberals and the liberals would be the Tories. The basis of conservatism is a desire for less government interference or less centralized authority or more individual freedom and this is a pretty general description also of what libertarianism is.”

    So is Ron Paul a liberatarian? He doesn’t think so. Is he a “crackpot”? I suppose that depends on whether you think a conservative is behind the times, up with the times, or ahead of his time. It all depends on how you define the times. He is more conservative than he is “crackpot” and I would submit that most of his ideas you probably agree with. The one you vehemently disagree with is Iraq. I don’t agree with Ron Paul that we should withdraw immediately but I do think the war was ill advised, needed a declaration from Congress, and that we need a timetable to get the heck out of there. I do want to leave while we are ahead and in a position to say, “We’ve done it! Mission Accomplished. Their destiny is now their own.”

    Bush isn’t the only candidate who vowed to continue interferring in the Holy Lands. George Herbert Walker Bush and Bill Clinton did, too. Reagan did not because he felt we needed to remove ourselves from the irrationality of Middle East politics.

    “Let our churches be free”

    I apologize that no others could answer it. The answer is, “in great detail” the issue of tax exempt status under the Internal Revenue Code. A snippet of detail is below and then additional comments follow:

    ************
    Churches are not allowed to express endorsement of or opposition to candidates for political offices. They may not contribute to PACs or candidates. And, they may not campaign or do any fundraising for candidates. If a pastor endorses a candidate and he affixes his title and church, he must add “Title and affiliation for identification purposes” Churches have been attacked for being “anti-war”. See http://www.commondreams.org/headlines06/0916-01.htm. (Whether you agree with this church’s message is irrelevant to our inquiry. Do not lose track of what we are discussing.)

    Churches are also not allowed to lobby “too much”. According to one letter ruling, more than 15% would be too much.

    Churches may support or oppose legislation so long as such activity comprises an insubstantial part of the overall operation. (See IRC 501 (c) 3)

    Should a taxpayer be audited and a church not be able to account, then the deduction will be offset.

    ***************

    What part of the following phrase do you and Sen. McCain have trouble with:

    “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, . . . .”

    Is it the “make no law” part? Is it the word “abridging” which means to reduce by any degree? Isn’t it an abridgment of the right of the peaceable assembly of churches to say that an assembly of G_d’s children may not distribute church flyers endorsing a political candidate? How does the First Amendment proscribe a group of people getting together to send collective contributions to a candidate who renders the opinions they want heard? Don’t I have a right to my money and money in my right? Don’t I have the right to spend my money on speech? Doesn’t money and speech go hand-in-hand? Why do you and Sen. McCain feel the need to control our speech?

    I told you once and I will tell you again. Let our churches be free. And I’ll add, Let Americans be free. Cast askant your Marxist predispositions to regulate speech.

    For a political sermon against George III see http://oll.libertyfund.org/index.php?option=com_staticxt&staticfile=show.php%3Ftitle=816&layout=html#chapter_69294

    For one against Jefferson’s candidacy, see http://oll.libertyfund.org/?option=com_staticxt&staticfile=show.php%3Ftitle=817&chapter=69458&layout=html&Itemid=27

    Traitors

    If you can’t denounce McCain-Feingold, then you deny the authority of the First Amendment. In that instance, you deny the supreme law of the land, the Rule of Law governing Congress assembled. In that instance, it is not I who can be called traitor.

    Finally, you mean, “Fundamental, radical, transnational, superfacist Islamo-savages” I know you are scared of them. Some are. I am not though I see prudence in being cautious. They hit us with all that they had on 9/11 and they deserve what they get. I have picked up and carried weapons on many occasions sir. I was and will always be an airborne infantryman. If you are “gladly” picking up your sword and fighting, what military experience do you have? How have you served?

    You know, I’d like to be able to preach that we should support a candidate who will actively give the President more power under Art. 1, Sec. 8’s Marque and Reprisal clause to kill Al Quaeda. Unfortunately, my church is too scared of the U.S. government to allow me to do so from the pulpit. You apparently want them to remain scared so that government can control their speech.

  6. Black David says:

    If you were a warrior, then think like a warrior, and not like some peacenik coward. Nothing else in this country matters, especially your freedoms, if the threat of Islamo-fascist domination succeeds in placing people like you into dhimmitude. Looking forward to being forced to pray on a mat ten times a day?

    Elect Barack Hussein Obama and it’s one step closer to that reality. Elect John McCain and our enemies will continue to fear the USA. Elect Slick Barry and empower our enemies.

    If you are the warrior that you claim to be, then you should be able to see that clearly.

    I lived in Israel during the 1973 war. I was living on a kibbutz and volunteered to help Israel citizens and the IDF defeat this Pally and Egyptian scum. I saw more human carnage that you could ever imagine. I had family die in the Holocaust. The spectre of death has always followed me with one thing in common. People have been trying to kill me and my people for eons. Do you think I’m just going to sit by and accept appeasement and capitulation from the stupid candidates you prefer? No way, pal.

    However, if you’d rather be a coward and hide behind scriptural fairy tales and worry about inconsequential things like who made the world, then you deign this country to defeat.

    Everyone should instead concentrate on survival and self-preservation for this country. The battle lines have been drawn. I don’t want to hear about Constitutions. I want to know how you are going to help preserve our property and hegemony.

    Where do you stand, sparky? With the forces of good (USA) or with the forces of evil (Islam)?

  7. Black David says:

    Personally, I could give a damn about the problems with your churches. I think all their tax exemptions should be stripped away because too many of their leaders live like rajahs on money they never earned on their own. It’s too easy to steal from the donation plate and line your own pocket. This “Prosperity Doctrine” is one big crock. Tell Copeland, Hinn, et al to get a real job and start a legitimate company that manufactures goods or services and pax taxes like everyone else that runs a business.

    I see, they are selling a brand called “God” and “Jesus” the provides a service called “salvation,” so that qualifies in their minds, I guess.

    If I wanted to pray and talk to God I could do it in private in my own home with my own family. I wouldn’t need to support some gross money grubbing racket to achieve salvation.

    But people like you are plugged into the whole program because you’ve been duped. The carrot dangled before you on the stick arrives in the form of the pearly gates with that nascent white glow and the harp music playing.

    You point fingers at others but you evangelicals are among the biggest dupes going.

  8. CK says:

    POST 1

    I never said we should lay down like little sheep and get slaughtered. To the contrary, retreating to an island unto ourselves is absurd. It’s a critical flaw in modern church doctrine. Christians, Jews, Gentiles, Democrats, Republicans, and Conservatives should advocate a principled approach rather than the communist philosophy of “The end justifies the means”. What has this communist doctrine wrought in the U.S.? Crap.

    Now, I will attempt one more post with you in an attempt to a) carry on intelligent dialogue, b) find a true answer, and c) show you that we’re not far from each other.

    The principles under which the Declaration of Independence make “Just War” theory highly probative vis-a-vis Israel. If we adopt those principles, we have every right and justification to fight anyone who would attack Israel. But it also requires TOTAL and absolute war. If Israel is attacked, then I would most certainly be in favor of conquering the nation who chose to do so using all that our military can offer. After all, if one nation doesn’t have the right to exist among the powers of the earth in the separate but equal station to which the Laws of Nature and Nature’s God entitle them, then we don’t. Ergo, Israel, like any independent nation must be protected. It’s why I was in favor of the 1st Gulf War. Iraq lost its right to exist when it denied that principle to the UAE. It’s the same with the Nazis who rolled over the border into Czechloslovakia. I believe that’s when the U.S. should have entered the fray. I also believe we should pursue Nazis and communists who are still alive and charge them with murder. Raoul Castro comes to mind.

    I will protect my property and my prosperity (or lack thereof) when my nation is told they can’t exist. In terms of these roving land pirates, Al Quaeda, I have no problem whatsoever declaring war against them—regardless of what we have done in the past in the Middle East. At the same time, however, I also realize why they hate us. It’s not because we’re free, it’s not because we’re rich, but it’s because we’re over there trying to play both sides. So yes, let’s go and double tap each and every one of them.

    Islam is a force to be reckoned with and we should be monitoring them closely. Why? Because they don’t fear this world. The only way to fear this world is to make them afraid of the afterlife. See? Whether you agree that there is an afterlife is irrelevant.
    So whenever Israel strikes at one of its muslim neighbors for ignoring universal principles, I jump off the couch and cheer. I will support them with our aid and military at that point. But to carry on a “Peace Process” is absurd for there is no lasting peace at all. Man I wish Ariel Sharon were still alive and commanding the Israeli military. I digress.

    None of the candidates I support agree with appeasement. I agreed with Ron Paul’s statement that we shouldn’t be in Iraq though I disagree with the proposition that we should pull out immediately. It’s not that easy. But I think we’re fairly close to the point where we can declare victory, set some time tables, and let them be. However, we need to leave Iran with a very real probability that they can only tickle the foot of an elephant for so long. (Note I said elephant and not jackass.) They need to know that if they cross the border, they’ll not only be sitting on a large supply of oil but the next thousand years’ supply of light bulbs and liquor bottles.

    In terms of pursuing Al Quaeda, have you read the Marque and Reprisal Act of 2001? It allows the President to pursue anyone around the world WITHOUT declaring war. That’s right, NO DECLARATION OF WAR. And who do you think proposed it? It was modeled after Jefferson’s example against the Barbari Pirates. Jefferson wasn’t interested in religous reasons to go to war but quickly determined to wipe out the muslims who were attacking us because they said such attacks were warranted by the false book known as the Koran. It led us to the shores of Tripoli. You’ll find an interesting article on the Barbari Pirates here: http://www.city-journal.org/html/17_2_urbanities-thomas_jefferson.html

    I support Blackwater as an entity to carry out such terror against those who would do us or our friends harm. Surely you don’t disagree with me on what I’ve said?

    POST 2

    “I could give a damn about the problems with your churches.”

    You asked me for an explanation so I gave you one. You can never say you don’t know the issue now or that no one explained it. If you didn’t give a damn, then why challenge me to write it?

    Tragically, I do agree with you on the tax exemptions. I really hate to find agreement with you on any point at this moment but I am intellectually honest. But I wouldn’t limit stripping tax exemptions from churches. I’d strip it for everyone—including the federal government who is the biggest juggernaut of them all. And you’re right about these “Christian Leaders” improperly so called. They should get a real job. So, too, should folks who’ve dined at the federal trough for their existence and called it public service. To wit, Sen. McCain has never held a real private sector job that I know of. And I don’t think the Marxist Obama has either.

    Now to your attacks on the supernatural stuff. Tell us David, how did we come into existence if not for some Supreme Being? From where did matter come from? Who laid the foundations of the earth? Who set the seas in their boundaries? Who created man? Is it that you believe we came from the natural inclinations of mud over time? Can a pool of mud create a 747? What is your exact dilemna with a supernatural being? Is it the persecution of the jews? They’re not alone. Look at the 30 million killed by starvation (i.e., Stalin) while mountains of food rotted in the Ukraine. Look at the 80 plus million taken by Chairman Mao in the most egregious of ways. They make Hitler look like a little french school girl. In a strange sense, Hitler singled out the Jews as being worthy of destruction whereas Stalin and Mao didn’t discriminate at all. Jew and Gentile were killed because they were human. Not that I can seperate degrees of evil here in a true sense, suffice it to say I loathe Hitler but I loathe Stalin and Mao worse. All are deserving of death.

    You’re entitled to believe you’re an atheist. However, I can’t see the rationale for that belief though I’d be the first to protect it.

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  10. Black David says:

    “rather than the communist philosophy of “The end justifies the means”.”

    It’s not communist at all, but rather said by Niccolo Machiavelli in the 16th century.

    I think it’s a great credo to live by. It’s worked very well for me and my family.

    The only true answer is survival at all cost.

    “Ergo, Israel, like any independent nation must be protected.”

    But she is not like any independent nation. Israel is different and more special because of what Jews contribute to the world in science, medicine, commerce, and the arts. We are per capita the most hard working and productive people on the planet. Thats fact. Iran or Syria, on the other hand, do not deserve to be protected because they hate Jews.

    I don’t know anything about “universal principle.” I know just which countries are good or evil and that’s how I look at it. There are no gray areas in my thinking.

    I’m not an atheist, but rather agnostic. Whatever force is behind the universe, I don’t believe it deserves being placed on a pedestal and worshipped and prayed to. NOTHING deserves being worshipped and prayed to.

    Politicians can be voted out if we don’t like how they do things. If you don’t like how government operates then no one is stopping you from running for office.

    Politicians pay income tax on their earnings.

    It’s laughable to equate them with religious yahoos running ministries. Politicians aren’t running business organizations with inventory, personnel, property, overhead costs, operating costs, etc, that collects contributions that represents their gross income.

  11. Black David says:

    I’d like to add that nations like Syria and Iran do not deserve protection also because of their overall hostile attitudes toward the West. They do nothing to quell jihad so they are as guilty as those enabling it.

    The Saudis are different because the government doesn’t support jihad and also because they are valued trade and military partners.

    Since I take part in electing my leaders, I have to trust them to do their job. I’ve had few objections to the Bush Admin’s foreign policy. If I would have done anything different, it would have been to amass an army of 400K and start at each end of the Iraq and sweep through via three fronts until reaching Baghdad. Fight with the same strategy as WW2. All land behind each front is clean and secure.

    It’s been proven that our ground forces don’t do guerilla warfare very effectively.

  12. CK says:

    POST 1

    In the interest of brevity, I’ll address only those areas where I disagre with you.

    “Politicians pay income tax on their earnings.” Right. But federal politicians don’t spend a moment considering their expenditures of your money or mine. In fact, it’s not theirs to give. That’s why I equate them with religious yahoos. My wife works for a conservative congressman who is outstanding. That office is and must be run like a business in order to save taxpayer money. He is one of a handful who actually returns a substantial part of his operating budget back to the House.

    POST 2

    Syria, Iran, Lebanon, Egypt, the Palestinians and etc. None of them deserve our money at all and they never will. Why? Apart from the constitutional problem of not having the power to give it to them, they will always obey a false and evil belief system.

    Bush – I am all in favor of Afghanistan. We should have squared that country away first and not rested until we had Bin Laden. We should have had 400K troops combing every inch. I would have put a $100K reward out for the soldier or soldiers who produced him dead and $500K for him alive plus a Medal of Honor.

    But I simply wouldn’t have gone into Iraq. I’ve looked at what was available and still don’t see why. It’s not hindsight and had I been blogging back then, I would have repeated here that it would destabilize that region and put us in a needless expenditure of money.

    However, once there, all one needs is what General Patton says here:

  13. Black David says:

    Yes, I am well aware what Patton said in his speech from 1944 that was included in that movie. There’s a lot of rah rah football coach bluster in that speech, but the essence is true, America didn’t take a backseat to anyone in those days.

    But guess what, we have a country where we prosecuted soldiers that torched VC villages or roughed up prisoners in military prisons. We fight pocket insurgency ineffectively and believe technology can replace old fashioned tactics like massive air strikes followed by massive ground assaults.

    It’s not our father’s or grandfather military anymore. Vietnam put a scare in a lot of people in the military. It’s made them weak.

    As long as pols are spending their budgets on the right things, I have no problem with what they do. Again, if I don’t like their job, I can vote them out. Failing that, I could run for office myself. Failing that, I can shut up and just take it because I choose to do nothing.

    America needs to be wiped clean by another massive economic depression. The strong will be separated from the weak. I want to see who can survive by their own wits and who can’t. The depression of the 1930s is what made the WW2 generation strong. Only great suffering and turmoil makes people strong. being fat and happy makes people weak. That’s why Israelis are among the toughest and most resilient on the Earth. That comes from 60 years of attacks from islamo-fascists.

  14. prosperity7777 says:

    Regarding Doug’s article.

    I know it is no fun holding you nose to vote for people who don’t represent Christian Conservative values, but it is wrong for Christians to sit home and not vote this fall. If for no other reason, McCain is rabidly pro-life. Fewer babies will be murdered under his leadership than under Obama’s leadership.

    So I say what a friend of mine just said in another forum, “Vote McCain not Hussein!”

    …the good David

  15. prosperity7777 says:

    Black David,

    You say that the Saudis are a different because the government doesn’t support Jihad and also because the are valued trade and military partners.

    Is that why they gave Bin Laden 500 million dollars prior to 9/11. The Saudi monarchy is two faced. They act like they are our friends, while they use the money send them for oil to support people like Bin Laden. Yeah, we really need military partners like these flakes.

    …the good David

  16. David Black says:

    Where’s your proof they gave OBL 500 million?

  17. prosperity7777 says:

    Black David.

    You don’t have to look far for your answer.

    http://www.nationalreview.com/mowbray/mowbray122002.asp

    I guess the Saudis are just like the rest of the Muslim leaders.

    This also shows what a poor judge of character you are, all ther way around.

    ,,,the good David

  18. David Black says:

    This is how people twist facts to suit their agenda.

    The USA does business with the Saudi government. The Saudi government does not fund terrorist groups. Why would they, it wouldn’t be wise for business, since we are their largest buyer of oil.

  19. prosperity7777 says:

    Black David,

    This is how you have managed to have no clue.

    The Saudi government did and does fund terrorists big time.

    The matter of the Saudi Monarchy giving Bin Laden 500 mil is a matter of public record.

    What are you, a Saudi sympathizer?

    …the good David

  20. David Black says:

    I’m sorry, but I’ve read that NRO article before and there are no government officials listed there.

    The fact is, Americans don’t want to pay 10 bucks for a gallon of gas. That’s why we do business with the Saudis.

    Our military can can care of al-Qaeda on its own, no matter who funds it.

  21. prosperity7777 says:

    Black David,

    The fact that the the Saudis gave a half a billion dollars to Bin Laden is common knowledge. It was reported on Fox News and in other sources. I even thing I remember seeing it in the Pentagon Early Bird report.

    The Saudis are as bad as the rest because they all want to destroy Israel.

    As a Jew, how you could not know this is almost beyond belief.

    Are you sure you are Jewish?

    …the good David

  22. David Black says:

    Again, you skew facts to suit your agenda.

    The seven people listed in the report are not Saudio government officials. The USA does business with the Saudi government.

  23. David Black says:

    I know that we have to do business with people we may not like.

    The USA worked with the USSR in WW2 and we didn’t like them, either. It was a necessary alliance beneficial to both parties.

    Americans don’t want to pay for 10 bucks/gal gas. That’s the reality of the situation.

  24. prosperity7777 says:

    Black David

    The Saudis are funding terrorism and that you don’t know that is astounding.

    …the good David

  25. David Black says:

    Yes, some Saudis are, but we still need their oil.

    Keeping the free market cranking along is paramount. Until we produce enough oil to stop buying from the Middle East, they will have to suffice.

    That’s reality. Oh that’s right, people that believe in fairy tale books can’t view the world for what it is.

    You would be one of the first people to whine about expensive fuel if we stopped doing business with the Saudis, I guarantee it.

  26. prosperity7777 says:

    Black David,

    Actually we don’t need their oil.

    …the good David

  27. prosperity7777 says:

    Black David,

    Source: Annual Threat Assessment of the Intelligence Community for the Senate Armed Services Committee 27 February 2008 J. Michael McConnell Director of National Intelligence

    SAUDI ARABIA

    In Saudi Arabia, the long-term challenge from Islamic extremism has been checked for now, and the government benefits from steady, oil price-driven economic growth. Saudi security forces have achieved notable successes against al-Qa’ida networks inside the Kingdom since 2003, killing orcapturing al-Qa’ida’s original Saudi-based leadership and degrading its manpower, access to weapons, and operational capability. Although Riyadh also has made strides against key supporters and facilitators of extremist attacks in Iraq, Saudi Arabia remains a source of recruits and finances for Iraq and Levant-based militants and Saudi extremists constitute the largest share of foreign fighters and suicide bombers in Iraq.

    Full report is at the following link:

    http://armed-services.senate.gov/statemnt/2008/February/McConnell%2002-27-08.pdf

    Did you read the last sentence BD? In other words, you were wrong.

    …the good David

  28. David Black says:

    Still you can’t read, but what should I expect from an illiterate cracker who can’t spell?

    Nowhere in there does it say that secular Saudi Arabian government officials sanction or have any connection to the funding of terrorism.

    Wahhabism and its anti-West fervor has always been present in Saudi Arabia, where have you been?

  29. prosperity7777 says:

    Black David,

    You really don’t understand how these Governments work do you.

    The Saudi leaders gave Bin Laden 500 mil prior to 9/11. Terrorists training camps operate in Saudi Arabia, not only with the Saudi leaders approval, but also with their aid in terms of money, military trainers, and military materiel, including ordinance. They occasionally pretend they are against terrorism and even pretend to try to put a stop to it by killing a few or them, but the bottom line is they are in bed with the terrorists. This is why “Saudi extremists constitute the the largest share of foreign fighters and suicide bombers is Iraq.”

    Aside from the fact that the Saudi Leadership hates Israel, like all Arabs do, the Saudis leadership also accommodates the terrorists because they are terrified the terrorists will start attacking them in a way which will interfere with their oil flow. With the Saudis, it is all about maintaining the oil flow. To maintain their oil flow, they will do anything, including staying out of conflicts with other Arab countries, no matter the cost, even if means supporting them against the Saudi’s will. They do this by providing terrorist unit training facilities, personnel, trainers, and material, including ordinance.

    You characterization of the Saudi leaders being pacifists has now been proven totally wrong. Just one more area you have proven yourself to be ignorant. Do yourself a favor and read the rest of the Intelligence Report, not that it will help you. Stupidity will probably prevent you from understanding it.

    …the good David

  30. David Black says:

    Who are these Saudi “leaders”? So far, you’ve cited bankers listed in an intelligence report.

    The term “leaders” is very ambiguous.

    Cite any terrorist sponsors within King Abdul Aziz’s Allegiance Council. Go ahead, sparky, put up or shut up.

  31. David Black says:

    Isolationist goons like you don’t get it. If our government doesn’t have a problem with buying Saudi oil, then why worry?

    You see, I’m smart enough not to want $10 per gallon fuel.

  32. prosperity7777 says:

    Black David,

    Whose bank accounts do you think they are talking about?

    Now I see why you have remained so ignorant for all of your 62 years. You choose to be stupid. People present you with more than enough facts to make their case and you call them names while ignoring the facts.

    Even worse, you are a Jew who advocates enriching the sworn enemies of your race so they can funnel money to the very people who murder Jews and Americans. You really need to change your light bulb.

    I hear that the little runt who calls himself the leader of Iran is looking for a shoeshine boy. Sounds like a job tailor made for you. Maybe you can invest the tips he gives in Iran’s nuclear program. You probably won’t even have to get up off your knees to do it.

    …the good David.

  33. David Black says:

    Since the US government doesn’t agree with your assessment of Saudi Arabia and chooses to continue its military and business ventures, that makes YOU the idiot, not me.

  34. prosperity7777 says:

    Black David,

    I forgot, worm food doesn’t have knees.

    …the good David

  35. David Black says:

    “Whose bank accounts do you think they are talking about?”

    Proof of that? Of course your conclusions are wrong. The US is still doing business with the Saudis.

    Now you are going to tell me you know more than US leaders. You can’t even spell, what makes you believe you know how to think?

  36. David Black says:

    I forgot, holy rollers don’t have any brains. They read and automatically believe something bizarre.

    If the Saudi government is so evil then why do we still do business with them?

  37. prosperity7777 says:

    Black David,

    I spell and write just fine, however your writing skills lack for all your name calling.

    In spite of your moderate ability to spell, your communication skills are just about the worst I have seen.

    Concerning the Global scene, your analytical skills are almost nonexistent.

    The reason America still does business with the Arabs, including the Saudis, is because of the Government’s stupid policies concerning drilling and because of naive people like you shoeshine boy and wannabe worm food.

    …the good David

  38. David Black says:

    “I spell and write just fine,”

    I beg to differ.

    VANE for VAIN?

    BOARDER for BORDER?

    Ignorant speller, ignorant thinker. If you didn’t have certain websites and a book of fairy tales to copy and paste from you’d have nothing. You’re the classic useful idiot for the Jaaaay-zussss hustlers who waits to be told what to say and what to think.

  39. David Black says:

    Ok, if you are such a great writer, why don’t you have your own blog?

    Too content to sponge off doug wead’s blog? Big tough guy with all the answers, why not put your money where your mouth is?

  40. prosperity7777 says:

    Blaaaack Daaaavid,

    Boy, you are real strange fruit.

    Haave a nice daay, althoughh, beeing U might maake thatt imposssible.

    ..the good David

  41. prosperity7777 says:

    I guess all it too to run BD off was bad spelling.

    …the good David

  42. David Black says:

    So when’s your own blog starting, coward?

  43. prosperity7777 says:

    Blaaaaaaaaack Daviiiiiiiiiid,

    So, U believe that anyone who doesn’t have a blog is a coward? Why would I want 2 waste even more of my time talking 2 people like U? Like I said, U B real strange fruit.

    The only coward here is U. U are afraid 2 B nice.

    Actually I am waiting for U 2 do some more of your cheerleading for the Saudis because U think the Saudis R our friends. What a laugh.

    …the GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOD & GREAAAAAAAAAAAAAT David!!!!!!!!!

  44. David Black says:

    The Saudis are business associates, not friends. You don’t have to be friends with business associates.

    You want a friend? Buy a dog.

  45. prosperity7777 says:

    Black David,

    Your answer is typical of people who are involved in organized crime. “…it’s just business.”

    Are you doing business with the Saudis? Are you involved in organized crime?

    You should read a book entitled Inside the Criminal Mind.

    …the good David

  46. David Black says:

    No, I don’t do business wit the Saudis and I am not involved in organized crime.

    I just recognize that Americans don’t want to pay $10 for a gallon of fuel. You seem to ignore that salient point.

    Until we find more of our own supplies, then we have to be in business with the Saudi government to keep costs down.

    That’s a reality people like you can’t grasp.

  47. prosperity7777 says:

    Black David,

    Ethics is somethng people like you can’t grasp.

    …the good David

  48. David Black says:

    Yes, I can see your halo glowing, Pollyanna.

    Self-preservation at all cost trumps everything.

  49. prosperity7777 says:

    Black David,

    Ah, and there is flaw in your theology.

    What difference does it make if you survive because, according to you, you will only to end up being worm food? In accordance with you belief system, in the end, your survival/demise will not be important to anyone, even to you.

    You are a practical man. So are gangsters. Like you, they only think of themselves and their families. The only difference between your way of thinking and the criminal’s thinking is you seem to keep your practical reasoning within legal boundaries, but you are not limited by Judaeo-Christian ethics.

    Practical men never understand what is really important, which is why hell will be full of practical men.

    …the good David

  50. David Black says:

    “Practical men never understand what is really important”

    Patent BS. My father and uncles made millions in the garment business and they were extremely practical, frugal, and pragmatic men.

    Too look at them you would have never known they had so much. They didn’t believe in foolishness like a “prosperity doctrine.”

  51. prosperity7777 says:

    Black David,

    So what? Aren’t all your dead relatives just so much worm food now? Do you worship memories of those who become worm food or the worm food itself?

    What makes your short life important to anyone, including you?

    So what if someone acts as if they love you or you think you love them?

    Of what importance is your family to you really?

    You don’t matter and they don’t matter because in the end all of you will be consumed in the digestive juices in the belly of some slimy carrion eating worm while the living go on spending all the money you earned.

    Is this not your view of life, death and eternity?

    If I may say so, it is not a very practical view for the personal future and welfare of you and your family.

    Jesus is your only answer! Ask Him into your heart today!

    You will be glad you did and so will He!

    …the good David

  52. David Black says:

    We take great pride in being able to extend for a few more generations a proud blood line of very successful Jews to steward the family’s business and material holdings.

    That’s our purpose. We don’t need the help of a Jew who lived 2000 years ago.

  53. prosperity7777 says:

    Black David,

    So you take great pride in providing worm food well into the future.

    That is quite an ambition you have set for yourself.

    Brother, you need Jesus!

    …the good David

  54. David Black says:

    I’m not afraid of my dead body being worm food. Why should I? I’ll be dead. Why should I care then?

    Here’s a secret, pal, your body will end up the same way, either that, or cremation. But really, worm food or ashes, who the hell cares?

    I’m not your brother, by the way.

  55. prosperity7777 says:

    Black David,

    Oh yes you are my brother because we are both descendants of Adam and Eve. You are stuck with me until you die, then I may never hear from you again if you don’t change your thinking.

    Let me let you in on a little secret pal. Jesus put the fix in for me and my body. According to 1 Th. 4:16: “Jesus will descend from heaven with a shout. The voice of the archangel and a trumpet blast will be heard. At this moment all the bodies of Christians who have died shall rise. The material elements of the body will be reassembled and united to the soul and spirit. Every individual who has ever lived will ultimately be reconstituted a complete person-spirit, soul, and body.”

    Jesus is still your only answer. It is better than becoming worm food.

    …the good David.

  56. David Black says:

    “Oh yes you are my brother because we are both descendants of Adam and Eve.”

    (yawn) You’re lost with that book of fairy tales, aren’t you?

    I believe in The Cat in the Hat. Does that count?

  57. prosperity7777 says:

    Black David,

    It counts about as much as week-okd worm food.

    …the good David

  58. prosperity7777 says:

    Correction…

    “…week -old…”

    …the good David

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