Dobson Meets With Bolton To Set UN Policy
Max Blumenthal printable version print page     Bookmark and Share
Fri Dec 02, 2005 at 04:13:38 AM EST
Before launching into my post, I want to say that the scary headshot of me that appeared by my post yesterday is actually a police photo taken after I was brutally assaulted by Francis Schaeffer's bodyguards after I queried him about plagiarizing Rushdoony (only the first part is a joke). I've asked Fred and Bruce to concede to my vanity by removing the headshot; a new one will be submitted shortly. Now read my exclusive on Dobson's private meeting with UN Ambassador John Bolton below.
During the debate on John R. Bolton's nomination as US ambassador to the UN, I was a little dismayed about the lack of attention devoted to his long and troubling history of collaboration with Christian right interest groups to, for instance, restrict condom distribution in developing nations. Now that Bolton has been installed in the UN by Bush, his so-called "reform" agenda will undoubtedly include a host of reactionary Christian right social policies. A disturbing reflection of Bolton's plans was provided by James Dobson in today's Focus on the Family broadcast, in which he and FoF President Jim Daly described a private, hour-long meeting they and a group of FoF staffers recently held with Bolton in New York.

Here are key portions of Dobson and Daly's discussion of their meeting with Bolton:

JIM DALY: He's [Bolton's] a good man. I mean, everything we saw of him in that almost hour we met with him...he's just a solid pro-life gentleman and uh, certainly more meek than what the Democrats portrayed. He's a nice guy.


JAMES DOBSON: But we had an opportunity to talk to him about the possibilty of Focus on the Family working with the United Nations. That really did excite me.

DALY: Absolutely. I think what came across in the meeting is that he [Bolton] is pro-life and pro-family and he gave us an invitation to work with him in setting some policy there at the UN that would support the values we believe in.

DOBSON: Now we're finding out why the Democrats didn't want him...

DALY: It had nothing to do...

DOBSON: He's [Bolton's] pro-life, pro-family, pro-morality and sees things the way we do regarding condom distribution and abstinence and other things.

For a little perspective, consider what Bolton's predecessor at the UN, former Republican Senator John Danforth, wrote about Dobson and his ilk:

"When government becomes the means of carrying out a religious program, it raises obvious questions under the First Amendment. But even in the absence of constitutional issues, a political party should resist identification with a religious movement. While religions are free to advocate for their own sectarian causes, the work of government and those who engage in it is to hold together as one people a very diverse country. At its best, religion can be a uniting influence, but in practice, nothing is more divisive. For politicians to advance the cause of one religious group is often to oppose the cause of another....

As a senator, I worried every day about the size of the federal deficit. I did not spend a single minute worrying about the effect of gays on the institution of marriage. Today it seems to be the other way around."

Wow. Good one, Max. What would the John Birch Society think?

by Carlos on Fri Dec 02, 2005 at 01:10:54 PM EST

I heard the programme. I used to enjoy listening to James Dobson's rants on Focus on the Family (call me perverse if you want!), but that was before he really had any leverage or influence in the corridors of power.

These days it is chilling to hear some of the things he says, knowing that they could have a direct bearing on my future and the future of this country. And now to hear that his reach is going to extend beyond this shores is simply awful news.

What really bothers me about Dobson though, is the blinders he wears. I'm prepared to believe that he is an honourable man (unlike many in the fundamentalist community) but to be called a friend by Dobson, all you have to tell him is that you are "pro-family" and "pro-life". Nothing else seems to matter.

John Bolton's unpleasant, disrespectful, and dishonourable antics over the past few years are now fully documented in congressional record. Yet that seems to matter not one jot to Dobson. After one meeting (I assume) not only is he prepared to defend this man's behaviour, he goes as far as to attack John Voinovich, calling him a cry-baby, for opposing the nomination.

And this is a pattern. Dobson is also happy to call Tom Delay a good friend and defends him to the hilt, despite his long career of shady political shenanagins and associations, all of which have been (or soon will be!) well documented. Why? Because Delay says he's "pro-life" and "pro-family".

I wonder if Dobson believes that Tom Delay's vicious and personal attack on the prosecutor who brought charges against him was an act worthy of a Christian?

The man is either an appalling judge of character, or is happy to associate with less-than honourable people so long as it promotes the causes he espouses. I suspect it's a little of both, and that's a dangerous combination.

by tacitus on Fri Dec 02, 2005 at 08:47:02 PM EST

People like Dobson, Delay, Falwell, et. al. preach morailty as a means to acheive power. They view power as the path to acheiving their goals. They're perfectly happy to excuse any immorality of their own in their pursuit of this power, because they see such immorality as a small, but necessary "bad" on the path to a "greater good."

I am sure they are very sincere in their beliefs that their goals are not only good and honorable, but imperative. The strength of those convictions is what allows them to give themselves so much leeway.

Beware of the everyday brutality of the averted gaze.
by mataliandy on Fri Dec 02, 2005 at 10:41:17 PM EST

Without a doubt Tom Delay is in it for the power and prestige - any morality he may believe in is simply a means to an end. Sincere? I doubt he has a sincere bone in his body.

People like Jerry Falwall and D. James Kennedy are no less ambitious than Delay, but at least they probably believe in most of what they are saying. However, I still get the sense that they're in it for themselves as much as anything else.

On the other hand, I've listened to Dobson off and on for the past decade or so, and I've always got the feeling that he's not really after any personal power. He's working for his cause. Now that might be changing since he's started being wined and dined by the Washington elite and maybe he's being blinded by the bright lights of political power.

But whatever the cause, I think you're right. The problem with having such strong convictions is that you tend to turn a blind eye to any misbehaviour that might promote your cause. I see this on the left as well as the right, but since it's the extreme right that's holding all the power right now, they're the problem.

by tacitus on Sat Dec 03, 2005 at 01:28:14 AM EST

tacitus has, as usual, hit the nail on the head when he says the problem isn't the whacked ideas Dobson and the rest of these guys have but their influence on the people who control our country and our lives. They're using the Bush Administration (can you imagine John Bolton being 'meek' with anyone other than these powerful far-right Xtians?) to affect everything from foreign policy to education to science so it reflects their religious beliefs, and it doesn't seem to matter to them that they're turning science into superstition and promoting policies that don't work (ie, abstinence-only programs in countries with a massive AIDS problem) or are downright dangerous.

But the biggest problem of all, I think, is that most of the change from fringe group to mover-and-shaker has happened underground. Most of the people I know think these are still fringe groups and are having a hard time taking them seriously. When I point out the lines of influence that run in almost every direction from the Xtian theocrats to the Congress and the White House, I'm generally dismissed as a 'conspiracy theorist' and told I'm over-reacting.

The mainstream press, especially the electronic media, almost always act as if a) there's nothing wrong with Xtian influence on the WH, b) such influence doesn't exist, or c) this is the way it's supposed to be. As a result, a big majority of the population doesn't seem to realize that these people are so powerful John Bolton has to be 'meek' when he talks to them and the president of the US has to rush out and change policies or withdraw nominees to the Supreme Court that they don't like.

How can we make things like Dobson's visit to Bolton to keep him on the straight-and-narrow Dominionist agenda more visible to normal folk?

- mick -

by mick arran on Sat Dec 03, 2005 at 12:50:46 PM EST

That is the question I have.


Corroborated allegations that Mr. Bolton's first wife, Christina Bolton, was forced to engage in group sex have not been refuted by the State Department despite inquires posed by Hustler magazine publisher Larry Flynt concerning the allegations. Mr. Flynt has obtained information from numerous sources that Mr. Bolton participated in paid visits to Plato's Retreat, the popular swingers club that operated in New York City in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

A real family man.

by Shockwave on Sat Dec 03, 2005 at 11:04:28 AM EST

There are many ways one can define John Danforth- scion of an old family - attorney, anglican (episcopal) priest, attorney, senator, well as consummate gentle man, a true follower of Christ Jesus in all his endeavours.

John seems to have lived in a timely age when both his denomination and political party would be imploded by forces who created a "revolution within a form." His proactive stance in both situations....remaining in ECUSA and in the dwindling Republican wing of the Republican Party...deserves just praise.

Well done, good and faithful servant, John +

by LIBERAL CROZIER on Mon Dec 05, 2005 at 07:45:19 PM EST

WWW Talk To Action

Cognitive Dissonance & Dominionism Denial
There is new research on why people are averse to hearing or learning about the views of ideological opponents. Based on evaluation of five......
By Frederick Clarkson (330 comments)
Will the Air Force Do Anything To Rein In Its Dynamic Duo of Gay-Bashing, Misogynistic Bloggers?
"I always get nervous when I see female pastors/chaplains. Here is why everyone should as well: "First, women are not called to be pastors,......
By Chris Rodda (178 comments)
The Legacy of Big Oil
The media is ablaze with the upcoming publication of David Grann's book, Killers of the Flower Moon. The shocking non fiction account of the......
By wilkyjr (98 comments)
Gimme That Old Time Dominionism Denial
Over the years, I have written a great deal here and in other venues about the explicitly theocratic movement called dominionism -- which has......
By Frederick Clarkson (93 comments)
History Advisor to Members of Congress Completely Twists Jefferson's Words to Support Muslim Ban
Pseudo-historian David Barton, best known for his misquoting of our country's founders to promote the notion that America was founded as a Christian nation,......
By Chris Rodda (105 comments)
"Christian Fighter Pilot" Calls First Lesbian Air Force Academy Commandant a Liar
In a new post on his "Christian Fighter Pilot" blog titled "BGen Kristin Goodwin and the USAFA Honor Code," Air Force Lieutenant Colonel Jonathan......
By Chris Rodda (127 comments)
Catholic Right Leader Unapologetic about Call for 'Death to Liberal Professors' -- UPDATED
Today, Donald Trump appointed C-FAM Executive Vice President Lisa Correnti to the US Delegation To UN Commission On Status Of Women. (C-FAM is a......
By Frederick Clarkson (115 comments)
Controlling Information
     Yesterday I listened to Russ Limbaugh.  Rush advised listeners it would be best that they not listen to CNN,MSNBC, ABC, CBS and......
By wilkyjr (79 comments)
Is Bannon Fifth-Columning the Pope?
In December 2016 I wrote about how White House chief strategist Steve Bannon, who likes to flash his Catholic credentials when it comes to......
By Frank Cocozzelli (228 comments)
Ross Douthat's Hackery on the Seemingly Incongruous Alliance of Bannon & Burke
Conservative Catholic writer Ross Douthat has dissembled again. This time, in a February 15, 2017 New York Times op-ed titled The Trump Era's Catholic......
By Frank Cocozzelli (55 comments)
`So-Called Patriots' Attack The Rule Of Law
Every so often, right-wing commentator Pat Buchanan lurches out of the far-right fever swamp where he has resided for the past 50 years to......
By Rob Boston (153 comments)
Bad Faith from Focus on the Family
Here is one from the archives, Feb 12, 2011, that serves as a reminder of how deeply disingenuous people can be. Appeals to seek......
By Frederick Clarkson (173 comments)
The Legacy of George Wallace
"One need not accept any of those views to agree that they had appealed to real concerns of real people, not to mindless, unreasoning......
By wilkyjr (53 comments)
Betsy DeVos's Mudsill View of Public Education
My Talk to Action colleague Rachel Tabachnick has been doing yeoman's work in explaining Betsy DeVos's long-term strategy for decimating universal public education. If......
By Frank Cocozzelli (54 comments)
Prince and DeVos Families at Intersection of Radical Free Market Privatizers and Religious Right
This post from 2011 surfaces important information about President-Elect Trump's nominee for Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos. -- FC Erik Prince, Brother of Betsy......
By Rachel Tabachnick (210 comments)

Respect for Others? or Political Correctness?
The term "political correctness" as used by Conservatives and Republicans has often puzzled me: what exactly do they mean by it? After reading Chip Berlin's piece here-- I thought about what he explained......
MTOLincoln (240 comments)
What I'm feeling now is fear.  I swear that it seems my nightmares are coming true with this new "president".  I'm also frustrated because so many people are not connecting all the dots! I've......
ArchaeoBob (87 comments)
"America - love it or LEAVE!"
I've been hearing that and similar sentiments fairly frequently in the last few days - far FAR more often than ever before.  Hearing about "consequences for burning the flag (actions) from Trump is chilling!......
ArchaeoBob (171 comments)
"Faked!" Meme
Keep your eyes and ears open for a possible move to try to discredit the people openly opposing Trump and the bigots, especially people who have experienced terrorism from the "Right"  (Christian Terrorism is......
ArchaeoBob (143 comments)
More aggressive proselytizing
My wife told me today of an experience she had this last week, where she was proselytized by a McDonald's employee while in the store. ......
ArchaeoBob (141 comments)
See if you recognize names on this list
This comes from the local newspaper, which was conservative before and took a hard right turn after it was sold. Hint: Sarah Palin's name is on it!  (It's also connected to Trump.) ......
ArchaeoBob (146 comments)
Unions: A Labor Day Discussion
This is a revision of an article which I posted on my personal board and also on Dailykos. I had an interesting discussion on a discussion board concerning Unions. I tried to piece it......
Xulon (144 comments)
Extremely obnoxious protesters at WitchsFest NYC: connected to NAR?
In July of this year, some extremely loud, obnoxious Christian-identified protesters showed up at WitchsFest, an annual Pagan street fair here in NYC.  Here's an account of the protest by Pagan writer Heather Greene......
Diane Vera (123 comments)
Capitalism and the Attack on the Imago Dei
I joined this site today, having been linked here by Crooksandliars' Blog Roundup. I thought I'd put up something I put up previously on my Wordpress blog and also at the DailyKos. As will......
Xulon (185 comments)
History of attitudes towards poverty and the churches.
Jesus is said to have stated that "The Poor will always be with you" and some Christians have used that to refuse to try to help the poor, because "they will always be with......
ArchaeoBob (142 comments)
Alternate economy medical treatment
Dogemperor wrote several times about the alternate economy structure that dominionists have built.  Well, it's actually made the news.  Pretty good article, although it doesn't get into how bad people could be (have been)......
ArchaeoBob (83 comments)
Evidence violence is more common than believed
Think I've been making things up about experiencing Christian Terrorism or exaggerating, or that it was an isolated incident?  I suggest you read this article (linked below in body), which is about our great......
ArchaeoBob (189 comments)
Central Florida Sheriff Preached Sermon in Uniform
If anyone has been following the craziness in Polk County Florida, they know that some really strange and troubling things have happened here.  We've had multiple separation of church and state lawsuits going at......
ArchaeoBob (77 comments)
Demon Mammon?
An anthropologist from outer space might be forgiven for concluding that the god of this world is Mammon. (Or, rather, The Market, as depicted by John McMurtry in his book The Cancer Stage of......
daerie (107 comments)
Anti-Sharia Fever in Texas: This is How It Starts
The mayor of a mid-size Texan city has emerged in recent months as the newest face of Islamophobia. Aligning herself with extremists hostile to Islam, Mayor Beth Van Duyne of Irving, Texas has helped......
JSanford (105 comments)

More Diaries...

All trademarks and copyrights on this page are owned by their respective companies. Comments, posts, stories, and all other content are owned by the authors. Everything else 2005 Talk to Action, LLC.