It's already going mainstream, now that the Republicans have been victorious. Herewith Christian talk-radio host Frank Pastore, writing in a major news daily (not some fringe publication, which, in a civilized society, is the only place you would expect to find this kind of shameless, and incoherent, shilling for fascist theocracy). I've bolded a few choice lines:
Christians, in politics as in evangelism, are not against people or the world. But we are against false ideas that hold good people captive [Ed.--Me too!]. Last week, this nation rejected liberalism, primarily because liberalism has been taken captive by the left. Since 1968, the left has taken millions captive, and we must help those Democrats who truly want to be free to actually break free of this evil ideology.
In the weeks and months to come, we will hear the voices of well-meaning people beseeching the victor to compromise with the vanquished. This would be a mistake.
Conservatives must not compromise with the left. Good people holding false ideas are won over only if we defeat what is false with the truth....
The left bewitches with its potions and elixirs, served daily in its strongholds of academe, Hollywood and old media [Ed.--the next targets?]. It vomits upon the morals, values and traditions we hold sacred: God, family and country....
Simply, a majority of Americans have rejected John Kerry and John Edwards and the left because they are wrong. They are wrong because there are not two Americas. We are one nation under a God they reject [Ed.--if "they" reject it, then there must be two Americas after all]. We remain indivisible despite their attempts to divide Americans through their relentless warfare against class, ethnic and religious unity....
The nation has now resoundingly rejected the left and its agenda. We do not want to become European. We do not want to become socialist. We do not want to become secular. We are exceptional. We are unique. And we are the greatest force for good in the world, despite what the left, the terrorists or the United Nations may claim. It is for these reasons that we remain the last great hope in the world for freedom.
Certainly if Osama bin Laden needs a new speech writer, he ought to consider Mr. Pastore: he has all the fascist and theocratic rhetoric down pat. The "enemies" (i.e., all the friends of the Enlightenment) have an "evil ideology," so there is no room for "compromise," they must be "vanquished" (did he mean "killed"?). After all, they use dark magic ("potions" and "exlixirs") when they are not "vomiting" on everything the devout hold dear. We are, after all, "one nation under" Allah (or was that God?), and we despise secular ideals, not to mention socialists, Europeans, Jews and rootless cosmopolitans--as well as terrorists and the United Nations (the same difference).
And this bit of fascist theocratic insanity appeared in a family newspaper.
Which brings us to Garry Wills on the real issue confronting this nation; bizarrely, at the dawn of the 21st century, the U.S. is fighting the battles of the 18th century all over again:
Can a people that believes more fervently in the Virgin Birth than in evolution still be called an Enlightened nation?
America, the first real democracy in history, was a product of Enlightenment values - critical intelligence, tolerance, respect for evidence, a regard for the secular sciences. Though the founders differed on many things, they shared these values of what was then modernity. They addressed "a candid world," as they wrote in the Declaration of Independence, out of "a decent respect for the opinions of mankind." Respect for evidence seems not to pertain any more, when a poll taken just before the elections showed that 75 percent of Mr. Bush's supporters believe Iraq either worked closely with Al Qaeda or was directly involved in the attacks of 9/11.
The secular states of modern Europe do not understand the fundamentalism of the American electorate. It is not what they had experienced from this country in the past. In fact, we now resemble those nations less than we do our putative enemies.
Where else do we find fundamentalist zeal, a rage at secularity, religious intolerance, fear of and hatred for modernity? Not in France or Britain or Germany or Italy or Spain. We find it in the Muslim world, in Al Qaeda, in Saddam Hussein's Sunni loyalists. Americans wonder that the rest of the world thinks us so dangerous, so single-minded, so impervious to international appeals. They fear jihad, no matter whose zeal is being expressed.
It is often observed that enemies come to resemble each other. We torture the torturers, we call our God better than theirs - as one American general put it, in words that the president has not repudiated....
The moral zealots will, I predict, give some cause for dismay even to nonfundamentalist Republicans. Jihads are scary things. It is not too early to start yearning back toward the Enlightenment.
Let us hope my innocent libertarian friends will awake before it's too late.
UPDATE: Pastore is getting real competition, it appears, from Bob Jones of the infamous "Bob Jones University" in South Carolina; read his letter to President Bush, and note especially this line:
Undoubtedly, you will have opportunity to appoint many conservative judges and exercise forceful leadership with the Congress in passing legislation that is defined by biblical norm regarding the family, sexuality, sanctity of life, religious freedom, freedom of speech, and limited government. You have four years—a brief time only—to leave an imprint for righteousness upon this nation that brings with it the blessings of Almighty God.
Different God, same message as Osama. Extraordinary.