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Tilting at Windmills

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September 8, 2010

ANGLE BEARS FALSE WITNESS.... For those who marvel at Sharron Angle's extremism, it's tough to pick out the nuttiest example from her greatest-hits collection. One of my personal favorites was the time she said Democratic policies violated the Bible's First Commandment.

ABC News' Jonathan Karl asked the Nevada Senate candidate about the argument.

Angle sought to clarify some of her more controversial statements, such has her saying that Democratic policies are "in violation of the First Commandment."

"I said that? No I didn't say that," Angle told Karl.

Actually, she did. Though the wording of the First Commandment can vary a bit, it generally says, "I am the Lord your God," and "thou shalt have no other gods besides Me." It's a pretty straightforward commandment, warning against worship of false gods and idolatry.

Angle told a radio talk-show a few months ago, "[T]hese programs that you mentioned -- that Obama has going with Reid and Pelosi pushing them forward -- are all entitlement programs built to make government our God. And that's really what's happening in this country is a violation of the First Commandment. We have become a country entrenched in idolatry, and that idolatry is the dependency upon our government. We're supposed to depend upon God for our protection and our provision and for our daily bread, not for our government."

The Republican Senate hopeful added that her campaign is part of "a war of ideology, a war of thoughts and of faith." Angle insisted she needs "warriors to stand beside me."

There's not a lot of wiggle room here.

In the ABC interview, Angle went on to say her remarks were part of "a discussion I was having with CBN. We were talking in very Christian terms. That's what Christian broadcast is -- that's their focus -- so you speak the language of the folks that you're communicating with."

As a factual matter, she was talking to a Christian radio show, not CBN. But either way, when candidates for major public offices make comments in interviews, that counts. Whether politicians are talking to religious broadcasters or secular outlets is irrelevant if the politician is saying something crazy.

Indeed, Angle went on to tell ABC what she really meant: "[W]e have allowed government in many ways to take the place of God."

This is just so bizarre. In the American tradition, we formed a secular union to establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity.

Does Angle think this was a mistake, and we'd be better off with some kind of theocracy?

Postscript: The Reid campaign, meanwhile, goes through the ABC interview and finds at least three instances in which Angle blatantly lied. I seem to recall something in the Decalogue about bearing false witness....

Steve Benen 4:00 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (28)

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Comments

Yeah, but ABC is not a Christian audience. Actually, Angle does sort of make sense. If the idea is that God will look after you, then being exploited by business interests is okay and the government should keep its nose out--just let everyone except the elite wallow in misery because God will welcome them into heaven when they die--seems like a good reason for that GOP health plan of die quickly--while those rich, elite business folks will have less chance of getting to heaven than a camel passing through the eye of a needle or something like that. Ever wonder why the communists were so dead set against religion?

Posted by: Terry on September 8, 2010 at 4:15 PM | PERMALINK

... against thy neighbor.

Reid lives at least three blocks away, so its all good.

Posted by: catclub on September 8, 2010 at 4:16 PM | PERMALINK

Hey! She was talking to them! Telling them what they wanted to hear. You guys weren't supposed to listen. It's none of your business. Remember? The press is supposed to ask the questions she wants to answer, and report the story the way she wants it told.

The frightening thing is, I think she really believes that's the press' function.

Posted by: Kevin Ray on September 8, 2010 at 4:25 PM | PERMALINK

"I didn't risk my life fighting for this country so that they could build a mosque!"

"Funny.. I would think that this is *exactly* why you risked your life fighting for this country."

Posted by: Churchyard on September 8, 2010 at 4:27 PM | PERMALINK

Yet another example that organized religion is the bane of humanity.

Posted by: DAY on September 8, 2010 at 4:28 PM | PERMALINK

A war of Faith?
A WAR OF FAITH?

She does not get the concept.

Thanks, Steve for invoking the ninth commandment, which seems not to show up on conservative copies of the Ten Commandments.

Posted by: AlphaLiberal on September 8, 2010 at 4:31 PM | PERMALINK

It seems to me that what she is saying is that the government should eliminate its welfare programs. Those are the primary ones where people are "dependent" on the government. In Angle's view, people should be dependent on God, not the government, for their welfare.

Or maybe she's talking about Social Security and Medicare, since those are the "entitlement" programs most people come to depend on.

It would certainly be good (and cheaper for the taxpayers) if God or churches took on the responsibilities government has to take care of the poor, the sick and the elderly. Perhaps that is the Angle Plan. Someone should ask her.

Posted by: Prospero on September 8, 2010 at 4:33 PM | PERMALINK

"---and we'd be better off with some kind of theocracy?" Simple answer, YES! They'll not stop until achieving this goal.

Posted by: -syzygy- on September 8, 2010 at 4:34 PM | PERMALINK
Angle: We're supposed to depend upon God for our protection and our provision and for our daily bread, not for our government.
Declaration of Independence: We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.--That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.

Even the _most religious possible reading_ of the Declaration of Independence says that God gives rights... and the government protects them.

Why does Sharron Angle hate the Founding Fathers?

Posted by: FlipYrWhig on September 8, 2010 at 4:50 PM | PERMALINK

Even the _most religious possible reading_ of the Declaration of Independence says that God gives rights... and the government protects them.

Why does Sharron Angle hate the Founding Fathers?
---
Tell Harry Reid.

Posted by: Isfahan on September 8, 2010 at 5:07 PM | PERMALINK

I've said this before, but we really should check and see if Harry Reid made a pact with Lucifer or someone similar to ensure his reelection, because NO ONE should be so lucky to get an opponent this pathetic. Christ, compared to Angle, Sue "Chicken For Checkups" Lowden is looking pretty awesome.

Posted by: gf120581 on September 8, 2010 at 5:16 PM | PERMALINK

@ Isfahan: I sent it to the Reid campaign. Maybe it'll give them a chuckle.

Posted by: FlipYrWhig on September 8, 2010 at 6:15 PM | PERMALINK

@gf120581: NO ONE should be so lucky to get an opponent this pathetic.

Have you forgotten the rogues' gallery of Obama opponents?

Posted by: FlipYrWhig on September 8, 2010 at 6:16 PM | PERMALINK

Angle told a radio talk-show a few months ago, "[T]hese programs that you mentioned -- that Obama has going with Reid and Pelosi pushing them forward -- are all entitlement programs built to make government our God. And that's really what's happening in this country is a violation of the First Commandment. We have become a country entrenched in idolatry, and that idolatry is the dependency upon our government."

Idolatry is actually prohibited in the second commandment. Idiot, learn to count.

Posted by: Exodus on September 8, 2010 at 6:24 PM | PERMALINK

"... That's what Christian broadcast is -- that's their focus -- so you speak the language of the folks that you're communicating with."

So In da langage uf da politicos...

TELL THE SUCKERS what they want to hear.

Meanwhile,

Boycott the Wall Street Journal

It's dated, ugly, and biased.

Posted by: KurtRex1453 on September 8, 2010 at 6:45 PM | PERMALINK

The thing that I find so bizarre about all these conservatives running for government is that they make the case that government is useless and to depend upon government for anything is just absolutely futile.

Yet at the same time they're running to be a part of government. They're running so that their job is to be in government and earn your paycheck via taxpayers.

If you think government is so useless then why in the hell do you want to be a part of it?

Posted by: ESM on September 8, 2010 at 8:58 PM | PERMALINK

"If you think government is so useless then why in hell do you want to be part of it?" ESM @ 8:58 PM.

1) If Angle is part of the government, then some idolatrous, non-Xtian ISN'T.
2) If Angle is part of the government, then she (and her like-minded "warriors") can insure that there isn't enough government left to rival her version of a Xtian deity.
3) Since Angle, and those like her, are "fighting the good fight" for the soul of this country (well, that's what they SAY), any- and everything is allowable; including lying.
4) Lastly, logic is NOT a prerequisite when dealing with someone's faith.
Or, in this instance, someone's delusions...

Posted by: Doug on September 8, 2010 at 9:23 PM | PERMALINK

Just who is putting God into the center of all our political debates? Didn't the wacky Angle listen to Glen Beck's overtly religious call at his recent "Tea Party Rally" to Restore Honor and pray for the salvation of our country? That we need to turn our decision-making over to a higher power?

In the mean time citizens who try to maintain the Jeffersonian separation of church and state by preventing classroom prayers are pilloried as Communists.

This "government as God" stuff is delusional, a problem of the right's own imagination, which of course they vociferously deny.

Posted by: pj in jesusland on September 8, 2010 at 10:33 PM | PERMALINK

Idolatry? I'll give you idolatry! Doesn't matter to me which Commandment it is, because we have real-world examples all around us, to wit:

The hierarchy of the Catholic Church defends and protects the Church at all costs against allegations of sexual abuse of minors, at the expense of the children who were raped and molested. Idolatry.

The tea party conservatives raise the American flag to the status of an icon of worship, forgetting what it represents -- the right to speak against it or even burn it. Idolatry.

The religious right elevates their ministers and the money they raise and the huge edifices they build above the needs of the poor in their own communities. Idolatry.

The Republican party plays on the emotions of pathetic ignorant Christians, engaging them in hate instead of love, bashing immigrants and Muslims and gays and anyone who looks different, all to gain their votes for more power and money for the already rich and powerful--using the flag and the tea party and the church as pawns to achieve their goals. Idolatry.

And--stepping deep in it here--atheists put their own intellect and logic and rational thinking above God. Idolatry. If I have to belong to a camp, I suppose this is the one I'm in.

Posted by: Thisby on September 8, 2010 at 10:46 PM | PERMALINK

Cracked TeaPot Dumb Partiers.

This is what I'm going to call Republican Tea Partiers from now on, members of the cracked TeaPot Dumb Party, a TeaPot not filled with tea, but with NUTS, and a cracked TeaPot at that, a TeaPot with a right Angle crack.

Posted by: The Oracle on September 8, 2010 at 11:09 PM | PERMALINK

"We're supposed to depend upon god for our protection and our provision and for our daily bread,not our government" Great, Lets try an experiment,we drop Angle off in the middle of the Nevada dessert with no food or water and if her imaginary sky daddy keeps her alive for 60 days we admit she is right and do things her way. What say, Ms.Angle, how about it?

Posted by: insaneredneck on September 9, 2010 at 7:03 AM | PERMALINK

"We're supposed to depend upon God for our protection and our provision and for our daily bread, not for our government."

So people with jobs are idolatrous because they depend on their employers for their daily bread? The military and police are idolatrous?

Posted by: Ginger Yellow on September 9, 2010 at 7:03 AM | PERMALINK

To paraphrase:
Forgive her for she knows not what she said.

Posted by: Marc on September 9, 2010 at 7:17 AM | PERMALINK

That's what Christian broadcast is -- that's their focus -- so you speak the language of the folks that you're communicating with.

Shorter Angle: No fair calling me out on my dog whistles!

Posted by: Gregory on September 9, 2010 at 7:52 AM | PERMALINK

If we are to rely on God to protect us, then, we don't need a military, or the police, or even the fire department, right? Oh, and I guess insurance is not necessary, or doctors, or hospitals... God will protect us.

And the bad things that do happen, you know, when God is testing our faith, I guess we are just supposed to endure the pain and suffering?

So, when God tested us by sending terrorists to crash airplanes into our buildings, we should not have responded militarily? We should have realized God was testing our faith?

Just trying to sort all this out...

Posted by: Steve on September 9, 2010 at 2:35 PM | PERMALINK

If you read your old testament, God was regularly at the Israelites disposal as their primary military weapon.

How soon can we expect Angle to call for dismantling the armed forces since we know that the Lord will smite our enemies as long as we obey Him?

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