Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Springtime For Foley

From a longer NYT piece:
As word of Representative Mark Foley's sexually explicit e-mail messages to former pages spread last week, Republican strategists worried -- and Democrats hoped -- that the sordid nature of the scandal would discourage conservative Christians from going to the polls.

But in dozens of interviews here in southeastern Virginia, a conservative Christian stronghold that is a battleground in races for the House and Senate, many said the episode only reinforced their reasons to vote for their two Republican incumbents in neck-and-neck re-election fights, Representative Thelma Drake and Senator George Allen.

But as far as culpability in the Foley case, Mr. Dunn said, House Republicans may benefit from the evangelical conception of sin. Where liberals tend to think of collective responsibility, conservative Christians focus on personal morality. "The conservative Christian audience or base has this acute moral lens through which they look at this, and it is very personal," Mr. Dunn said. "This is Foley's personal sin."

Brian Courtney, a Republican-leaning sales manager attending the concert, said the Foley affair had led to "the kind of mudslinging one would expect to see at an election time like this." He added that he was paying closer attention to the "values and character" of the candidates, and that he would probably vote Republican again.

David Thomas, a father taking his family to the concert, said that he, too, was leaning toward voting Republican and that the scandal only reinforced his conservative Christian convictions.
Got that? This is today's evangelical Right. The more incompetent, repulsive, and hypocritical their elected officials become, the more they believe in the Republican Party. Bad is therefore good (and the worse the better, presumably) because it clarifies and confirms.

If Congressional Republicans had any sense they'd run naked through the streets of DC, swigging whisky, cavorting with hookers, and frantically instant-messaging teenagers. Via the Max Bialystock principle, it would do wonders to shore up the Base.


Anonymous Mike said...

It's yet another example of today's world, a world filled with constant messages, constant information: what matters is not what someone does, but what he says.

If a candidate says, "I am saved. I am a Christian with Christian values," it doesn't matter at all what he does. If another candidate also says, "I believe that Christianity is my own business and I want it out of politics," it doesn't matter what he does either.

10/10/2006 6:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can't change horses when the Rapture's a comin'

10/10/2006 8:34 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a southern Catholic, my ears are always tuned to the evangelical Right, whether I like it or not, and I'm often amazed at how non-sensical evangelical "theology" seems to be. For evangelicals, salvation isn't about good words - or even good works as we Catholics suppose. It's about good beliefs.

Bush "believes," therefore he makes a good president.

When a democratic electorate loses its ability to effectively judge or reward its leaders, where does that leave us?

10/10/2006 10:07 AM  
Blogger kindness said...

I take issue with those that claim they are "leaning" with all the info we know now to be true, vs what bushco & the republican leadership has said on most matters of late.

They aren't that open minded. They aren't "leaning". In fact, they aren't budging from their knowingly wrong position.

I guess the advantages of faith are that it allows one to ignore reason or result.

10/10/2006 10:31 AM  
Blogger Davebo said...

Man, I need to be selling aluminum siding in Virginia!

10/10/2006 11:50 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don't forget the checkies. Can't produce plays without the checkies!

10/10/2006 12:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You people are so superior to all those Christian dolts from the hinterlands. You are AWSOME.Please feel free to continue congratulating yourself on your wit and sophistacation.

Pa Kettle

10/10/2006 12:43 PM  
Anonymous Mr. Hedley Bowes said...

Denial isn't just a river in Northern Africa.

10/10/2006 12:55 PM  
Blogger copy editor said...

Vice is rendered into Virture. The age of Spin and Madness.

10/10/2006 12:56 PM  
Anonymous wendy said...

It seems to me that politics have devolved into a sporting match, with people picking a team and rooting for them despite the team's lapse into unsportsmanlike behavior...excusing the flagrant fouls as well as defending the ill-gotten advances...all in the name of being a "loyal" fan.

Though I enjoy sports to some extent, I have never understood my rabid-fan relatives, who are glued to the couch every weekend or dealing with snarling traffic, nasty weather and crowds to engage in their fetishistic, passionate ranting with a bunch of fellow face-painters. Even if their team stomped on the other player's head, they would cheer this.

10/10/2006 1:17 PM  
Anonymous wendy said...

I guess this the Bread & Circus phase of the downfall.

...that and Paris Hilton.

10/10/2006 1:18 PM  
Anonymous Steve said...

Why not let Foley run? Can't he make a (my Catholic school upbringing is showing here) "divine act of contrition"? Can't Jesus save him from his unhealthy urges? Why can't this be done overnight?

Doesn't anyone have any faith in this happening?

10/10/2006 2:27 PM  
Blogger kindness said...

Hey Pa K,

No one from our side of the poitical spectrum has yet to say we are superior to those quoted in this thread.

We are just pointing out their hypocracy and lies.

Them's two different things. We expect you to be able to tell the difference. Maybe you need to read more so you can learn.

10/10/2006 2:55 PM  
Anonymous Gus said...

I do believe that someone touched a Pa Kettle nerve.

10/10/2006 3:02 PM  
Blogger DED said...

I'll second what kindness wrote.

I saw a similar piece on Evangelical Christian voters in Tennessee.

If Foley had been a Democrat, the outrage would've been relentless.

10/10/2006 3:59 PM  
Anonymous kam99 said...

"I guess the advantages of faith are that it allows one to ignore reason or result."

To my mind if you USED reason, you would question the religion. They don't, they do as they are told.

The Democrats should be clear on this. There is NOTHING that will make most of these people even *consider* voting for a Democrat. Let them go, and figure out how to win without them. It can be done.

10/10/2006 7:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


10/10/2006 7:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you don't mind, CR, I'd rather not see any congressional Republicans naked in the street (or anywhere else for that matter).

10/10/2006 8:53 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

. . . especially Hastert (that fat bastard).

10/10/2006 8:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rev. Dobson believes that the way to prevent homosexuality is for the father to shower naked with the son, making sure the son compares penis size to see who is bigger. I kid you not---that is what the pervert Dobson thinks.
Foley was acting in loco parentis, so there was nothing wrong with his actions, per Dobson.

10/10/2006 10:28 PM  
Blogger Philip said...

Feh, I think I managed to delete a long comment without posting it. So summarizing, there's plenty of anecdotal evidence that my correligionists are in fact demoralized and less inclined to support the GOP. This article is hardly the last word on the matter.

10/10/2006 11:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Greenspan was right, this is the time for a real 3rd party. You can't tell me that there aren't good Republicans and Democrats frustrated with these parties that could form a very competent and competitive new party. I hope.

10/11/2006 11:31 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Evangelical Christian is just another word for Taliban.

10/11/2006 11:33 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Maybe Karl Rove knows his base. He kept saying there was an October surprise. Perhaps the trick is, leak the story yourself because you are in control of it. No surprises. You're on top of it. But then go around blaming everyone else. Most definitely call it a liberal-Democratic conspiracy. But in the end you know that this will stir the blood in your deraged base.

One hell of a way to run a Democracy, a great country.

10/11/2006 11:46 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anybody see Bush's "news conference"? Clearly the guy is toasted. Nothing left but the mopping up.

On the other hand, if Bush goes, we get... Cheney!

And if they both go we get... Hastert!!

And if all three go, I think we get Clarence Thomas.

Fun, fun, fun!

10/11/2006 2:57 PM  
Anonymous wendy said...

That is the most depression image I've had all day, and that is saying something.

10/11/2006 3:24 PM  
Blogger resigned idealist said...

BTW, if you noticed, all those quotes are from MEN. From what I'm gathering, women (Christian AND non-Christian) have no problem seeing this as a failure to protect our children/teens from sexual predators.

10/11/2006 5:50 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You'll really love the lineup...

Sen. Stevens (tubes and bridges to nowhere)

Almost makes you want to fight to keep Bush in office, doesn't it?

10/11/2006 6:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


10/11/2006 8:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


10/13/2006 9:03 AM  
Blogger Philip said...

Case in point about what I was saying above....

I'm Evangelical and I certainly don't want to be part of the Taliban. I'm certainly an outlier among my correligionists (I'm Libertarian) but there are probably more of us.... what's the word I'm looking for?... non-batshit? oh yeah, sane Evanglelicals than you might think.

10/14/2006 10:59 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Almost makes you want to fight to keep Bush in office, doesn't it?

This has occurred to me, and yes, it does. There's not a name in that list I would trust with my dog, let alone the country. How low have we sunk?

10/15/2006 12:50 AM  
Anonymous Todd said...

The Republicans can use the George Costanza method of doing exactly the opposite of their instincts to shore up their pathetic base. Brings to mind the classic line "Hi, my name is George - I'm unemployed and live with my parents."


10/19/2006 1:19 AM  
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