Author Topic: A question for America  (Read 1642 times)

MMIX

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A question for America
« on: December 21, 2016, 08:36:27 pm »
So this odd thought keeps wandering through the back of my mind. How many Americans thought they were voting for the end of the world on Nov 8th? Now excuse my ignorance if this is a dumb question but we don't have a "Rapture" culture over here in GB. Its a term I had never even come across until I was nearly 50. It definitely seems to be a key part of some voters mindset though. I was very struck by the number of times people would reply to incredulous reporters saying to them "but he's not a Christian" "he's a serial philanderer" "he's a liar" "he's not a good man" something to the effect of "god can work through anyone like he did through prostitutes ".

So was Armageddon on the back of ballot in flaming letters?

If the answer is Donald J Trump then it must have been a fucking stupid question.
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The Good Reverend Roger

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Re: A question for America
« Reply #1 on: December 21, 2016, 08:44:21 pm »
So this odd thought keeps wandering through the back of my mind. How many Americans thought they were voting for the end of the world on Nov 8th? Now excuse my ignorance if this is a dumb question but we don't have a "Rapture" culture over here in GB. Its a term I had never even come across until I was nearly 50. It definitely seems to be a key part of some voters mindset though. I was very struck by the number of times people would reply to incredulous reporters saying to them "but he's not a Christian" "he's a serial philanderer" "he's a liar" "he's not a good man" something to the effect of "god can work through anyone like he did through prostitutes ".

So was Armageddon on the back of ballot in flaming letters?

About 40% - IIRC - of Americans believe that they are living in the end times.

Mostly, I think, because they can't imagine God bothering to continue things after their special snowflake ass has gone and died.

It's also worth mentioning that the whole idea of the rapture was made up 200 years ago by some asshat country preacher.
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tyrannosaurus vex

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Re: A question for America
« Reply #2 on: December 21, 2016, 09:25:44 pm »
I was raised Baptist, a denomination that dates all the way back to around the time of the Civil War or so, but nobody's exactly sure because nobody bothered to keep track or remember anything. This type of evangelical Christianity is distinctly American, which shows in its outright xenophobic, fundamentalist extremism. It's the religion we needed to justify slaughtering all those Indians and Manifest Destiny. But Baptists themselves actually believe they are practicing "original" Christianity, and will go to great lengths to draw surprisingly fabricated lines through a mostly fictional history all the way back to John the Baptist, because, you know, he was "the Baptist" in exactly the same way they are Baptists. You can tell because it's the same word. In English.

Anyway, there's a very large cult of the End Times among Baptists and more or less every other evangelical strain of Christianity. Only the denominations with recorded history dating back farther than 1825 seem to be immune -- Lutherans, Methodists, and Catholics of course. But the vast majority of American Christians are "evangelical", meaning they believe any history that runs contrary to what they learned in Sunday School is not only false, but an outright conspiracy to bury the truth and persecute them. They literally meet disagreeing beliefs and actual evidence in a way that strengthens their faith because, to them, it's only evidence of how "tricky" Satan is, and how they're the smart ones because they see through all those confusing numbers and experiments and clinical trials and... I digress, but yeah, America has the End Times Disease real, real bad.

As for this particular election, I honestly don't think it was that religious. The only function religion served last month for most Trump voters was to conveniently buckle and give way without so much as a peep. This was a very blatant, very deliberate backlash against Obama and against everything he and his supporters represent. It was an outright assault on multiculturalism, on liberal values (both modern and classical, no matter what these people try to tell you), on every conceivable type of equality. They viewed it as a referendum on the last hundred years of progress, and they rose up and smashed it to pieces. Their religion, insofar as it was involved at all, was more like a cheerleader than a band leader.
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Re: A question for America
« Reply #3 on: December 22, 2016, 01:52:53 am »
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Re: A question for America
« Reply #4 on: December 22, 2016, 06:20:45 am »
As for this particular election, I honestly don't think it was that religious. The only function religion served last month for most Trump voters was to conveniently buckle and give way without so much as a peep. This was a very blatant, very deliberate backlash against Obama and against everything he and his supporters represent. It was an outright assault on multiculturalism, on liberal values (both modern and classical, no matter what these people try to tell you), on every conceivable type of equality. They viewed it as a referendum on the last hundred years of progress, and they rose up and smashed it to pieces. Their religion, insofar as it was involved at all, was more like a cheerleader than a band leader.

I don't think it was even that. I think it's just that he's the kind of alpha male type that people people tend to respond to, despite the fact that they make terribly incompetant leaders (or at best are no better than a random draw), because ultimately we're not very far removed from chimps and monkeys and have been unable to buck the vestigial garbage programming left over from the days of small brands of early primates.

This tangentially relates to religion though as religion is, in many ways, the cultural equivalent of useless vestigial traits.

I was raised Baptist, a denomination that dates all the way back to around the time of the Civil War or so, but nobody's exactly sure because nobody bothered to keep track or remember anything. This type of evangelical Christianity is distinctly American, which shows in its outright xenophobic, fundamentalist extremism.

I disagree with that, xenophobic fundamentalist extremism is one of the general defining traits of abrahamic religion, or they all go through periods of it once they get established; the jews did it in the old testament days, the catholic christians did it in the middle ages, the anglican protestants after them, and the non-anglican  protestants and the muslims are doing it now. Ultimately it's still a part of judiasm and catholicism and anglicanism too - it's still in the damn book and stuff - but they've expanded into mediocrity and thankfully most of them are now of the only-religious-on-Christmas-and-Easter/Rosh-Hashanah-and-Yom-Kippur type don't really give a fuck
« Last Edit: December 22, 2016, 06:40:54 am by Prelate Diogenes Shandor »
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tyrannosaurus vex

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Re: A question for America
« Reply #5 on: December 22, 2016, 06:39:29 am »
I don't think it was even that. I think it's just that he's the kind of alpha male type that people people tend to respond to, despite the fact that they make terribly incompetant leaders (or at beas are no better than a random draw), because ultimately we're not very far removed from chimps and monkeys and have been unable to buck the vestigial garbage programming left over from the days of small brands of early primates.

This tangentially relates to religion though as religion is, in many ways, the cultural equivalent of useless vestigial traits.

You're probably right. And this is even worse, of course. Even outright racism and stubborn willful ignorance would take too much mental effort for a lot of people.
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Re: A question for America
« Reply #6 on: December 22, 2016, 06:48:47 am »
About 40% - IIRC - of Americans believe that they are living in the end times.
Probably considerably more than that now. Many of those who never have and never will think it for religious reasons are probably thinking it due to Trump calling the shots on the ICBMs and/or Putin calling the shots on US elections
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Re: A question for America
« Reply #7 on: December 22, 2016, 09:13:37 am »
So this odd thought keeps wandering through the back of my mind. How many Americans thought ...
So was Armageddon on the back of ballot in flaming letters?
Not at first. After being "woke" in this reality, yes.
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Re: A question for America
« Reply #8 on: December 22, 2016, 07:41:50 pm »
I think GW was the last presidential candidate that evangelicals were really excited about. Rapture means we don't have to worry about climate change, but politically, I think they mainly just vote GOP as a reflex because of abortion.

Also, there's the dominionists in the evangelical wing, so anyone who supports Israeli settlement is helping to usher in the second coming.
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Re: A question for America
« Reply #9 on: December 22, 2016, 11:30:25 pm »
There's also the issue that, in addition to the recognized religions, many Americans now worship money and those who have it - partly as a result of the anti-communist pro-capitalism propaganda of the Cold War (as if Russia being terrible didn't long predate and long outlive the Soviet Union) - and Trump (strangely, considering the record of his businesses) has a lot of money
« Last Edit: December 22, 2016, 11:38:46 pm by Prelate Diogenes Shandor »
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tyrannosaurus vex

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Re: A question for America
« Reply #10 on: December 23, 2016, 01:36:40 am »
This gives me a truly American idea: Declare myself a church and that my religion is the worship of money. Instant tax-exempt status.
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Re: A question for America
« Reply #11 on: December 23, 2016, 02:13:00 am »
I think GW was the last presidential candidate that evangelicals were really excited about. Rapture means we don't have to worry about climate change, but politically, I think they mainly just vote GOP as a reflex because of abortion.

Which is ironic because they're ultimately probably a big reason why more people aren't pro-life; anyone who isn't a religious crackpot associates pro-life positions negatively with people who are religious crackpots, and any cogent or intelligent pro-life argument gets drowned out amid a din of "Jesus this, Moses that, Abraham hit me with a wiffle-ball bat"
Praise NHGH! For the tribulation of all sentient beings.

a plague on both your houses -Mercutio

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It is an unfortunate fact that every man who seeks to disseminate knowledge must contend not only against ignorance itself, but against false instruction as well. No sooner do we deem ourselves free from a particularly gross superstition, than we are confronted by some enemy to learning who would plunge us back into the darkness -H.P.Lovecraft

He who fights with monsters must take care lest he thereby become a monster -Nietzsche

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Re: A question for America
« Reply #12 on: December 23, 2016, 02:29:30 am »
This gives me a truly American idea: Declare myself a church and that my religion is the worship of money. Instant tax-exempt status.

I love this. With the right kind of literature and set up this could really work. Make Scientology look like a child's attempt at religion. More-so, anyway.
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Re: A question for America
« Reply #13 on: December 23, 2016, 12:43:49 pm »
You must not know about The Prosperity Gospel.

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Re: A question for America
« Reply #14 on: December 23, 2016, 04:28:30 pm »
This gives me a truly American idea: Declare myself a church and that my religion is the worship of money. Instant tax-exempt status.

Didn't Jim and Tammy Bakker already do this?
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