More on Newt Gingrich's Theocrat of the Week Award-Winning Address
Frederick Clarkson printable version print page     Bookmark and Share
Tue May 29, 2007 at 02:53:14 PM EST
Pastordan at Street Prophets further mines Gingrich's award-winning commencement speech at Liberty University --  for theocratic gems and other riches of understanding the wily pol and possibly, maybe, presidential wannabe.  And along the way, offers some pull-no-punches commentary:

I can't think of anyone less qualified to uphold dignity and seriousness than this narcissistic buffoon. How many affairs has he had? How many scandals and sleazy political operations has his name been connected to? How many wives has he summarily dumped in favor of a newer, shinier model? How many times has his petty, venal, grasping hypocrisy been exposed for the whole world to see, and he wants to lecture us about dignity and seriousness? Give me a freaking break.
He ought to hold his announcement in a circus sideshow. I double-dog dare him. It's only there, among the pinheads, that he'll find the proper stage for his bilious mixture of smarm, authoritarian pandering, and community-college-stoner philosophizing.I don't know what's worse, that he's going to postpone a potential announcement so he can cash in on his seminars, or that he's trying to make himself out to be Al Gore's equal, able to float above the messy preliminary campaign in favor of a late, authoritative move into the field.

Either way, he's running, and being damn clever about it, too. He's out there sharpening his stump speech and making friends while Rudy and John and Mitt take the heat.

I think this is an important point. Gingrich is running as a non-candidate, making speeches, selling books, punditizing on TV -- and reinventing his political persona to conform to the ideology and ambitions of Christian nationalist constituencies in ways that are not possible for the current GOP top teir. Meanwhile, he is also facing much less scrutiny than if he was a declared candidate, or seeming to be close to becoming one. But he is clearly making himself available if none of the current crop quite catches on, or get ripped-apart by howling mobs of disenchanted Republican factions.

Needless to say, his claim to be the champion of American Religion doesn't stand up to much scrutiny. His conflation of the Declaration of Independence and Natural Law is bad politics and bad theology too....

This is obviously a red-meat occasion, but it's equally obvious that Gingrich is running to the hard right. His twin specters of the radical Islamist and radical Secularist are sure to become a staple of conservative fear-mongering in the next couple of years.

But of all the scary crap Gingrich has to say in this speech - and there's plenty - nobody seems to have picked out the scariest bit of all:

 

I also agree with Pastordan, that there is much in Gingrich's speech "to digest and come to terms with" and that it is worth reading the whole thing.

This may be a bellwether moment in the history of the religious right, and very possibly in American politics if Gingrich's gambit works -- as well as if it does not. Gingrich edging over into Christian nationalism and actually seeking to be the candidate of the religious right seems so unlikely, and yet...




Display:
while he tours the country making nice to the religious right? Will the blogosphere pick up the slack?

Is Gingrich's recent confession to Dobson of his marital infidelity sufficient examination of his character? Are the questions of being ethically challenged in the family values department a side show has he moves into the realm of Christian nationalism?

... so many questions. Questions, we no doubt will continue to pursue in these parts.

by Frederick Clarkson on Tue May 29, 2007 at 04:27:23 PM EST


How can Gingrich criticize Rudy's marital issues, when he himself is a known adulterer?  And more importantly, why do the Christian conservatives still like this guy?  It is mind boggling.

by oklahomalefty on Wed May 30, 2007 at 11:08:05 AM EST


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