More than two thousand years ago, Socrates was ordered to drink Hemlock for the crime of not believing in the gods the polis believes in. Two hundred years ago the authors of America’s Bill of Rights decreed that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion. ” Their purpose was to prevent a repetition of what happened to Socrates. But while the First Amendment prohibited any enforcement of religion It simultaneously endorsed the right of every to be as superstitious as the theocrats who condemned Socrates.
Virtually every time Barack Obama makes a public utterance, he concludes by asking a sky fairy named God to "bless" America. When the president of the United States publicly endorses the delusion that humans are the domesticated livestock of a pet master in the sky, he embarrasses the 36 percent of Americans who are too rational, intelligent, and educated to believe in Mother Gooses male equivalent .For Republican to endorse such scientific illiteracy would be understandable. Republicans tend to be throwbacks to the Dark Ages when humans were regularly burned at the stake for not believe in the gods the polis believed in. But the reason most theists vote for Democrats is that, even though as high a percentage of Democrats as Republicans are god addicts, Democrats are more committed to upholding the First Amendment and supporting the separation of church and state.
Pres. Obama has more than once acknowledged that non-theists are as patriotically as any god addict. He wants America's 100 million non-theists to be confident that they will protect them from social and economic oppression by the theist majority. So why is he not doing so? Perhaps, as his appointment of Rick Warren, a homophobic, anti-Semitic, Mormon-denouncing heretic-hater of Torquemadan proportions, to recite an invocation at his inauguration suggesst, he is not fully convinced that the Christian God is too nice a guy to endorse the hatred of the human race spelled out in the Judeo- Christian Bible. As for his kowtowing to the organized crime syndicate known as the Roman Catholic Church, it merely continues the treasonous implementation of the laws of a foreign state enforced by King George II.
For some reason, Obama thinks he needs the votes of America's most dangerous theofascist mad dogs, the 16 percent of the population who wants to turn America into a Christian clone of Khomeini's Iran. He is pandering to that 16 percent by promising to continue the Bush policy of using taxpayer money to finance "faith based programs "that have no purpose except facilitating religious propaganda in treasonous violation of the First Amendment. He probably assumes that such a promise will not alienate the 36 percent of Americans who are non-theists, because they are bound to recognize a politically expedient lie when they hear it. In fact while President Obama can afford to lose the support of smaller minorities, he cannot lose the support of 50 million voting age non-theists and still win.
Obama's statements since making his promise to violate the separation of church and state have been somewhat reassuring. He has declared that recipients of federal funds cannot use them "to proselytize or provide religious sectarian instruction, "and "cannot discriminate against nonmembers in providing services." All funds paid to religious organizations can only be used "on secular programs and initiations." Since he is not a brain amputee (otherwise he would be a Tea Party Republican), he is clearly aware that, once a religion peddler gets his hands on federal tax money, trying to control how that money is spent would be like trying to sink a ship by deepening the ocean.
Obama’s virtual pardon-by vetoing prosecution-of the Bush dictatorship is bound to cost him a lot of votes in 2012. Gerald Ford's pardon of Richard Nixon is widely believed to have made Jimmy Carter president. Obama is probably right in assuming the number of Democrats who want to see Dick Cheney strapped to a gurney with a needle in his arm is no more than a few hundred thousand. But the numbers who want to see Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, and Rove incarcerated for the term of their natural lives is in the millions.
Obama is a very Machiavellian politician. While paying lip service to gay-rights, he has permitted his Justice Department to file a brief with the Supreme Court endorsing the legitimacy of a vicious homophobic Defense of Marriage Act. He is gambling that such a move could win him support for the Christian Taliban and, with little risk that the America's 15 million voting-age gays will switch their allegiance to whatever homophobic theofascist the Republican party is bound to nominate. In the unlikely event that the Republican nominee is a supporter of equal rights, Obama can modify his position at that time so that he remains the lesser evil.
It is Obama's continuation of his predecessors dismantling of the wall of separation between church and state that has the potential to prove his undoing. "Faith based initiatives" are an unmitigated violation of the First Amendment's prohibition of any "law respecting an establishment of religion “. Far from abolishing such legalization of theocracy, as a non-theists who voted for and expected, Obama has extended them and is showing signs of using more tax money to propagandize for the God delusion that Bush Senior or Junior ever did. Like all believers in Santa Claus and other fairy tale characters, Obama deludes himself that he is doing the uninfected a favor by maximizing their incentive to share his god virus (the way vampires believe they are doing the uninfected a favor when they bite them on the neck).
But Obama's capital default on his campaign promises is his refusal to repudiate the Bush administration's treasonous violation of the First Amendment, and refusal to repudiate the next Nixon doctrine that "when the president does it, it’s not illegal." Instead of abolishing Bush’s "faith based" misappropriation of taxpayers’ money for the propagation of religion, Obama expanded it-after securing the support of America's 100 million non-theists by expressly implying that they would henceforth be recognized as first-class citizens with all the rights granted to them by the First Amendment.
Obama lied to 200 million Americans, Republican and Democrat, theorists and non-theists, who support the separation of church and state. After winning their votes, he continued the Bush policy of turning the wall of separation into a picket fence. He lied to the supporters of the Geneva Convention by implying that the war crimes of the Bush tyranny would be appropriately prosecuted. Instead he a vetoed any attempt to bring to justice the perpetrators of acts that transformed America from the most trusted nation on earth into the most hated. Why? Is he planning, or even already perpetrating crimes that could get him prosecuted once he is out of office, if he does not establish the precedent that previous administrations are untouchable? Is that why Obama’s State Department extended an expiring contract with Dick Cheney's private security firm, Blackwater, banned from operating in Iraq by the Iraqi government because some of its guards, while escorting an embassy convoy through crowded Baghdad traffics, allegedly fired indiscriminately, killing seventeen Iraqis? Or is he just plain inept and, like the Robert Redford character in The Candidate, his response to his election is, “What do I do now?”
Faced with the Republican party's threat to turn America into a banana republic that had to shut down because they could not meet its payroll, Obama publicly expressed a willingness to gut the social safety net there represents the biggest difference between the United States of America and the Republican Party's ideal state of Lowest Slobovia. He continued his demand that the super-rich pay the same fair share of taxes they pay everywhere else in the civilized world, perhaps in full awareness that the Republicans, having accepted gigantic bribes in the form of campaign contributions for the wealthiest 2% of the population to give them a free ride, would never risk losing those bribes by giving any consideration to the welfare of the other 98 percent. Was it a bluff, and Obama had no intention of pressuring Democrats into robbing the poor to bribe the rich? Presumably time will tell.
The Republicans simultaneously declared war on American women, defunding family planning clinics in order to impose the Christian Taliban’s antiabortion "law respecting an establishment of religion " that restored women to the slave status from which Roe versus Wade had freed them—and Quisling Obama allowed them to do so.
The pro-tem front-runner for the Republican front presidential nomination and educationally challenged theofascist product of “Oral Roberts University” (oxymoron) and a flagrant overpopulator who three times committed the crime against humanity (as Isaac Asimov describes such behavior) of intentionally haven't more than two children-- is openly advocating the overthrow of America's secular Constitution in order to establish the Christian theocracy that the First Amendment was designed to prevent. And how is Obama responding? Instead of quoting John Adam’s assurance to the world, unanimously ratified by the Senate on June 7, 1797, that "the government of the United States of America is not in a sense founded on the Christian religion," he has remained deafeningly silent. Is that a calculated tactic to encourage the Republican Party to nominate a candidate who does not have a snowflake's chance in hell of defeating him in 2012? If so, has he forgotten that is barely a decade since the Republican Supreme Court overthrew the Constitution in order to appoint a member of their own party president in full awareness that he lost the election? Does Obama think it cannot happen again? Or is it that he would rather rein in of theocracy than serve in a democracy?
Obama’s latest attempt to Republican ize America was not his decision to involve American armed forces in a war to overthrow the unelected dictator of Libya. Rather it was his assertion that he had the right to do so without obtaining the consent of Congress, which alone has the right to declare war, even as even George W Bush a Dallas when he fed Congress a pack of lies in order to win approval for a war of personal aggrandizement. Obama did not try to justify his unilateral action by citing the Nixon doctrine. Instead he argued that the operation Olivia did not involve "sustained fighting " or any U.S. ground troops and there was "no exchange of fire with hostile forces.” As a commentator at MSNBC pointed out, that was tantamount to saying, "War? What war? " This from a president who was once a constitutional law professor at the University of Chicago.
America will never be the Land of the Free until it elects a president who is a nontheist, one who will fight tooth and nail against every attempt to impose any law respecting an establishment of religion on believers and believers alike. Obama pays lip service to the rights of nontheists while not hesitating to throw them under the bus in order to win the approval of the 64 percent who share his belief in an unelected sky fairy. He should not be surprised when the 50 million nontheists who would have voted for him start asking, "With a Democrat like Obama in the White House, who needs Republicans? "