Deseret News and Mormon Church Epistle “Ensign” Combining

The Salt Lake Tribune reports that, “Church spokesman Cody Craynor confirmed Wednesday that a copy of the Deseret News’ national edition — which includes several pages of value-laden news and analysis as well as the LDS Church News — was packaged with the February Ensign mailed to subscribers in the United States and Canada.”  See: http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/blogsfaithblog/57468448-180/news-edition-national-ensign.html.csp

The editor of this Mormon rag, Paul Edwards, writes in an email that it “represents an opportunity for current Ensign subscribers to have a thoughtful source of news and analysis designed for faith- and family-oriented audiences.” My interpretation of what this really means is they have edited out any pesky facts, honest discussion, or truth so that it is sanitized and denatured enough for the fundamentalist palate, accustomed as it is to the denial of reality.

For fundamentalist activists, they see any invasion of their narrow, religious mindset as a good thing, because their ultimate goal is to infiltrate every corner of society, take over our government, and install a theocratic, fascist state, destroying what is left of our democratic, secular system based on the principle of separation of church and state.  This is one of the biggest dangers with which we are faced and why we are experiencing the huge increase in the war on women’s rights because they are after women’s autonomy as it threatens the male supremacism and patriarchy on which all fundamentalism (whether Christian, Islam, or Judaic) is based and the establishment and proliferation of their dominionist philosophy.

“Progressive Evangelical Fundamentalists?”

Read another article on the Alternet at http://www.alternet.org/belief/if-only-right-wing-christian-evangelicals-knew-where-their-ideas-came, arguing that evangelical fundamentalists have a progressive history in the 19th century and suggesting that perhaps when the GOP/TeaParty crumbles, progressives should consider aligning themselves with them.  The author offhandedly remarks that progressives may have to think “strategically” about possibly teaming up with them for equal pay, for example, even though it might mean compromising on abortion or gay rights, surmising from his comment that there may be “good arguments on both sides.” My answer to that is, “Are you crazy?!”

What kind of “progressive” movement are you left with when you’re willing to trade away women’s or LGBT human rights for equal pay?!  Any movement that coerces women into unwanted childbearing would properly be called an authoritarian, ultra-right, fascist patriarchy, not a “progressive evangelical movement,” an oxymoron if there ever was one. And what would the “good arguments on both sides” be, pray tell, that male supremacism is blessed by God and that abortion is “murder”? Why should anyone “compromise” with extremist fanaticism?

These are people to challenge, not embrace, and indeed the radical religious right have been the lunatic fringe and undoing of both the GOP and the tea party and would stop at nothing until they establish an horrifically oppressive theocracy, regardless of any progressive history or association with populism. They are the core of the sanctimonious, hypocritical, meanspirited GOP, and a bigger threat to human rights and social justice than either the establishment Republicans or the tea party are without them and who both factions should unceremoniously dump if they hope to have a prayer of surviving politically. But more importantly, because the 20th century GOP have virtually nothing to offer anyone (other than the corporate elite) and the Tea Party has nothing to offer that true progressives (I’m not talking the mediocre, cave-in-to-the-right spineless Democrats here) do much better, like peace and civil liberties, I would be among those who would welcome their all going the way of the dinosaurs.

Patriarchal Dominionism: The Core of Tyranny

It is no accident that today we are seeing the confluence of the corporate state, the seizure of political power by the church, and an escalating war on women.  Like the corporation, the church was an instrument of the king, and we are coming full circle again, witnessing the blurring of the line between church and state, the ascendancy of corporate fascism, and mounting scapegoating of women.

Some of you may wonder why the GOP has slipped a cog and gone completely off the rails with regard to women’s basic human rights.  The answer is this:  the GOP has been taken over by corporate interests and the right-wing authoritarian fundamentalist church, both of whom have always been exceedingly hostile to women’s autonomy, psychosocial independence, power, financial freedom, and self-determination.  The Republican Party started its slide into fascist theocracy when it put the church’s opposition to abortion into its platform in 1976, and plummeted into full-blown misogyny in 2012 with its rape comments and inclusion of a call for a “fetal personhood” amendment to the Constitution.

In the beginnings of this country, the colonies were ruled by governors who were appointed by the king and who were also church leaders; they also were beholden to and exploited by the corporate arm of the monarchy in the form of the British East India Company.  It was tyranny on the part of both the church and the corporation that led to the series of revolts, such as the Boston Tea Party, that culminated in the American Revolution. The Revolution also coincided with the most outrageous abuse of power by the church:  the witch hunts. This tyranny has a long history, going back to the beginnings of patriarchy.

In antiquity, there was goddess-worship for 25,000 years prior to the advent of patriarchal religions which took over by force.  The goddess-worshipping matrilineal culture of Minoa, an egalitarian and peaceful, prosperous, highly-developed culture that honored and respected the earth and life-giving nature and revered the sacred feminine, was destroyed by an invading patriarchal group who worshipped a male war god who ruled by fear and domination and who brought violence, death and destruction, gender inequality, and the abuse of power with it.

The patriarchal religions of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, which appeared much more recently and currently dominate, are all Middle-Eastern in origin, and despite all the concern about Sharia Law, there is very little difference between the Al Qaida and Christian fundamentalist dominionists in their zeal to oppress women.  There is likewise little difference between the last two U. S. administrations’ use of torture, labeling people “terrorists”, and use of psychological manipulation and wars to pursue domination of the earth and every creature on it, and the Inquisitions’ and Puritans’ use of torture and labeling women as “witches” and the use of Christian dogma to silence, control, and intimidate.

Though the Christian dominionist reconstructionists would like us to believe that the country was founded as a “Christian nation” and should be ruled by rigid Christian orthodoxy, the fact is they are talking about puritanical colonial America, not the post-revolutionary, independent United States of America, which was founded on the principles of the Enlightenment—rationalism, universalism, empiricism, and most importantly, secularism.  Unless we put a stop to the takeover of our government by both the corporation and the church, we are going to be living in a fascist, authoritarian, Calvinist, corporate theocracy where individual freedoms, especially for women, are a thing of the past.  We must WAKE UP and kick the corporation, and the church, out of government once and for all and pass the Equal Rights Amendment and an amendment to abolish corporate personhood before women once again are chattel and patriarchal corporate and ecclesiastical tyranny totally obliterate the rights of human beings.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dominionism

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Witch_hunts

http://www.salon.com/2012/10/26/gops_insane_rape_remarks_arent_outliers/

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/oct/25/real-republican-party-rape-platform

http://www.politicususa.com/gop-attempts-drag-america-imaginary-conservative-utopia.html

http://voices.yahoo.com/witch-hunts-as-form-anti-female-discrimination-379982.html?cat=37

http://one-evil.org/content/people_15c_Innocent_VIII.html

http://www.themystica.com/mystica/articles/m/malleus_maleficarum.htm

http://sfr-21.org/women.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/European_witch-hunts

http://voices.yahoo.com/how-martin-luther-john-calvin-conducted-witch-379935.html?cat=37

Eisler, Riane, “The Chalice and the Blade,” Harper & Collins, 1988.

Daly, Mary, “The Church and the Second Sex,” Harper & Row, 1975.

Occupy Patriarchy – WORD March & Rally

WORD Rally 8-26-12

WORD – Women Organized to Resist and Defend organized a march and a rally in Los Angeles on August 26, 2012 and Women-Occupy was there in support.  The signs say it all, summarizing the outrage at the War on Women being waged across the country by the patriarchal, fuedalistic religious right who are attempting to undermine our democracy and replace it with a male supremacist theocracy–a favorite read, “Gender Violence is a Men’s Issue!”

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Romney: 10 Really Important Reasons to Vote for Anyone Else!

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And by anyone, I mean even Ron Paul, Gary Johnson, or Barack Obama, though there are far better choices out there:  Jill Stein, Rocky Anderson, and Roseanne Barr for example.  I feel compelled to spell this out, especially since Romney is trying so hard to pretend he is someone other than who he really is, by listing the reasons he is the worst choice in my humble opinion.  When reviewing them, you may wonder why I have left out civil liberties, foreign policy, trade agreements, drug policy, and war.  This is because this piece is about reasons voting for anyone other than Mitt Romney, and Obama and Romney are both so disregarding of our civil rights, militaristic, devoted to continuing the destructive and pointless war on drugs, and ready and willing to enable corporate world government and a police state that Romney could not be singled out as worse, though on foreign policy his debate comments about “getting bad guys” reveal a more simplistic, comic book tone than Obama’s.

Ron Paul is only marginally better on most of these issues I have enumerated but infinitely better on war and civil liberties (except for women as he is anti-choice).   The only person running that is worse in most every way than Romney is Virgil Goode of the Constitution Party because he is right-wing-on-steroids crazy when you look at his voting record vs. what he says in the debates, where he comes across less extreme (kind of like Romney and Obama).  That should put this in perspective. Even so, voting for him means less chance of a Romney/Ryan win so I can still say for that reason, he is a better choice (only because he has a snowball’s chance in hell of winning). Remember you can write names in in many states, even if they don’t appear on the ballot!

Here are 10 reasons why anyone sitting on the fence should NOT cast a vote for Mitt Romney:

  1. Paul Ryan – the architect of the most severe austerity budget imaginable, anti-government fanatic, misogynist extraordinaire, self-congratulatory elitist, utterly confused religious zealot who simultaneously embraces fundamentalist Catholicism (except for the part about caring for the poor) and the ultra-selfish philosophy of the very damaged, anti-social, arguably sociopathic Ayn Rand (an atheist), oblivious to the inherent contradictions. Romney, with his corporate raider, fascistic, anti-human policies and questionable ethics, not to mention his polygamist father and beliefs that are viewed as cultish by the rest of Christendom, has picked an even more dangerously fringe running mate who would be a heartbeat away from being President, in addition to being set up for a White House run later if elected VP.
  2. Women’s Rights – If you are a woman or care about a woman—any woman, say your mother, sister, wife, daughter, grandmother, friend, or your housekeeper, Romney is a disastrous choice.  Romney not only has declared his intention to defund Planned Parenthood, supported employers being able to refuse to cover employees’ birth control for ‘moral’ reasons, continued to back the likes of Todd Akin and now Richard Mourdock and Joe Walsh with their abhorrent views on abortion and rape and rape-induced pregnancy, and vowed to work towards Roe v. Wade being overturned, but has even endorsed the crackpot idea of a Constitutional Amendment to endow “fetal personhood” on nonviable life, like gametes and zygotes, being included in the Republican platform, and has never supported Lily Ledbetter and equal pay.  Romney and Ryan don’t have “binders of women,” they are BINDERS of women!  They will not stop until women have no rights whatsoever and are barefoot and pregnant, dependent brood mares; if elected maybe Romney might provide some “sister-wives” to help out with the laundry and childrearing since he certainly won’t support day care.
  3.  The Earth – Fast track to environmental doom with resulting drought, famine, worsening storms, hurricanes, fires, and water shortages await if this demonic duo wins the White House.  Romney is a climate change denier and actively promotes nothing but dirty forms of energy like oil and nuclear power and environmentally devastating practices like clearcutting, drilling in the antarctic, mountaintop removal, and fracking, when clean alternatives are not only preferable and available but essential, and actually uses the term “clean coal,” an oxymoron if there ever was one, while being hellbent on dismantling all of our environmental regulations and agencies.
  4.  The 99% or the 47% – If you are a member of the 47%, or even the 99%, Romney clearly not only doesn’t care about you, he sees you as a “parasite” who wants to mooch off of him and his other plutocratic, capitalist multimillionaire/billionaire/multibillionaire friends.  If anyone is parasitic, it is these two guys who have lived off of the work of the 47% and the 99% their entire privileged lives.  Romney and Ryan will do everything in their power to amass more power and wealth for the 1% and themselves at the rest of our expense, and enable the so-called “job-creators” they promote to do exactly what they are doing now–sit on all their cash like the fat-cat hoarders they are.
  5.  The Economy and Income Inequality – Extremist, trickle-down, voodoo economics is what this man and his side-kick believe in, the same policies that will only increase the already huge divide between the haves and have-nots.  The pathetically inadequate health care reform bill, otherwise known as “Obamacare,” that has instituted a few much-needed reforms such as outlawing the practice of denying coverage based on pre-existing conditions, Social Security, Medicare, and the entire social safety net will be under attack; tax breaks for the ultra-rich will not only be continued but likely increased while they pile on more taxes for the middle class and the poor; the already bloated military budget will increase (along with the deficit) and there are not going to be any jobs, not here anyway. Romney and Ryan believe in austerity, for everyone but the uber-wealthy and people like them who serve them; this is a rehash of Hoover’s policies that plunged us into the Great Depression and are currently causing financial collapse and social chaos in Europe.  A vote for Romney is a vote for Herbert Hoover.
  6.  Education – Romney believes in education for the 1% and those who can afford to go to an Ivy League school; everyone else doesn’t need an education because the fictional “jobs” he is going to provide won’t require one, especially if you have to commute to India or China. He probably “loved” his teachers at Harvard, but he doesn’t love the ones at your child’s grade school or those teaching at a community college, and you can forget about Title IX or Brown v. Board of Education because these rightwing people want to do away with equal opportunity.  If you think education should be less important than Halliburton’s profits, especially for girls and minorities, vote for this guy.
  7.  Theocracy, not democracy – These two men have no respect for the separation of church and state, support the blurring of these lines, and espouse beliefs that rationalize rule by the church.  Which one you ask?  Any of the authoritarian, fundamentalist, patriarchal religious sects will do as they all agree that basic human rights are expendable, such as sovereignty over one’s own body, right to make your most personal decisions regarding conception, whom you bed and whom you wed, what books you can read and films you can see, what words you can say and hear, freedom from religious tyranny, and so on.  The Bill of Rights (especially the 1st amendment) is basically superfluous to these people, except for corporations of course, though they love to abuse particularly the 10th and 14th amendments; only the 2nd amendment is exempt because corporations rake in obscene profits on firearms.  Obama has been a civil liberties nightmare also; he just isn’t as much of a Bible thumper as these two and doesn’t support their radical religious social agenda—nor does Biden, despite being a practicing Catholic.  You might as well vote for the Taliban as for Romney/Ryan as there is little difference.  Do we need more gun-toting religious bigots?!
  8. Corporate rule unchecked – The fact that corrupt billionaires like the Koch Bros. and Sheldon Adelson (a modern-day Meyer Lansky) support Romney and Wall Street has abandoned Obama for him says it all, this despite Obama’s letting banksters off the hook and caving in left and right to corporate demands. Romney, which someone pointed out can’t be spelled without “money,” is going to make sure that Bain Capital and its ilk are the bane of our existence because he is 110% corporate.  He thinks they should rule over every single aspect of our lives and continue to get government handouts in the form of subsidies and military contracts and pay no taxes in order to line the pockets of their shareholders while complaining about the deficit.  Corporations are not only “people,” they are the only “people” that matter.
  9. The Supreme Court – Mitt Romney has reportedly said that Roberts, Thomas, Alito and Antonin Scalia are his favorites.  Need I say more?  He apparently favors judges who give corporations free rein to wreak havoc on actual people and the environment, allow unlimited contributions from billionaires and super-pacs to elections as in the 2010 Citizens United decision because they claim money is speech, collude in the stealing of elections by ordering a voter recount to be stopped as in the 2000 elections, and who, like Thomas, don’t believe they need to report their wife’s income or recuse themselves from cases where there is a conflict of interest (his wife employed by the Susan Komen foundation and the Affordable Care Act ruling, for example).  What can you expect from a presidential candidate who doesn’t think the American public has a right to see his tax returns?  With him in the White House, he may be able to nominate up to FOUR justices to the Supreme Court, who we will have to endure for 40 or 50 years.  Remember Robert Bork?  He’s BA-A-CK as Romney’s top legal advisor!
  10. Oppression vs. Justice – that means people of color, LGBT people, women, workers, students, older Americans, the poor, the ill, virtually everybody but the privileged, entitled, ultra-wealthy, elitist 1% will be further disempowered, their rights trampled, their votes suppressed, and their lives and health degraded.  Vouchers for inadequate, for-profit healthcare (another oxymoron) at astronomical prices, no equal pay for women, no raise in minimum wage, corporate price gouging, GMO-engineered, pesticide, hormone, preservative-laden Frankenfood, exploitation of public lands, pollution of the air, water, and soil, privatized social security, corporate propaganda passing for news, no public television with quality programming or accurate, in-depth journalism, and limited legal recourse for injustice.

When considering for whom NOT to vote, Romney is at the top of my list; I hope you will consider putting him there as well and pick any of the others.  I personally am voting for Roseanne, the antithesis of everything Romney represents being a feminist, environmentalist, populist, pro-education, pro-worker, secular humanist (yes I used that wonderful term!), working-class, civil libertarian peace and justice advocate and the antidote to everything that is wrong with Washington.

Saudi Arabia: Hooray for Female Olympic Athletes? | Care2 Causes

Saudi Arabia remains a bastion of male supremacy and, as pointed out in this article, only complied with sending a couple of tokens to the Olympics because they were forced to in order to participate.  It is a disgusting example of a culture steeped in a repressive patriarchal religion and the  absence of freedom that results  when the church rules the state–a cautionary tale for this country which is well on its way to becoming a theocracy.  Saudi Arabia needs to become secularized in order to join the 21st century and make some real changes like voting rights, driving rights, and educational rights for women if they want to show the world they are serious about progress.

Saudi Arabia: Hooray for Female Olympic Athletes? | Care2 Causes