Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Dithering Pat fleeces the dumb

One of the dithering old fools of the Religious Right is the daffy Pat Robertson. Robertson is an extremists in politics, a bigot in personality, and the friends of dictators in reality.

If one were intentionally trying to discredit religion Pat Robertson would be the way to do it.

Now most people know that this man became extremely wealthy fleecing the sheep.

It is not usual for me to watch this buffoon when he’s on TV pushing for donations to his so-called ministry. But while channel surfing there was this clown in his antiquated turtleneck sweater pushing his new “diet” plan. No surprise there. Next to religion “diet” plans are one of the fastest way to separate fools from their money.

Robertson then pushed a “report” that I thought was low even for him. It’s hard, of course, to stoop lower than calling for the assassination of people on national television and then trying to lie your way out of it. But Robertson was pushing for donations and nothing interferes with that.

In this story he reported on family that was “in debt”. Compared to most people they obviously weren’t actually that much in debt but the debt level was part of the hype to convince people to give him their cash.

In the “report” this family was supposedly “deep” in debt. And Robertson tells his viewers to watch this report to learn how they paid off all their debt in just three days! Sounds dramatic. But not really.

Day one the wife pledges a donation to Robertson. Three days later their attorney calls and tells them that a dispute they had was settled in their favor and they were given a settlement of $10,000. With the $10,0000 the family paid off their debts.

The lesson to be learned is that if you are in debt and having trouble paying your bills give your money to Robertson instead and “God will bless”.

A few things are obvious. First, the debt of this family was exaggerated. If one settlement of $10,000 paid off their bills they weren’t as far in debt as most families. Second there was no miracle. The settlement was clearly in process for a long time. The fact that they had an “attorney” indicates both of those. Poor people don’t have attorneys on call. And the fact that he was already working on the case means the funds were already in the process of coming their way long before they gave the multimillionaire Robertson some of their money.

But in Robertson’s world everything is the result of manipulation. If you give him money you are guaranteeing that you will get money back because it’s divine magic. If you pray diseases disappear because it’s divine magic. If things go bad in the world it’s the work of the devil and those “bankers” who run secret international conspiracies behind everyone’s back.

In Robertson’s world there is nothing that is the logical result of other things. All things are part of his magical thinking. Hurricanes hit specific parts of the globe with amazing regularity but in Robertson’s mind such incidents are God’s attempt to murder people because he doesn’t like how they behave.

If Robertson were right, which virtually never happens, it would mean that Jehovah and Jesus are murderers and monsters. But there is no god. God is the great Rorschach test. People project onto the “divine” their own personality. Vicious, bigoted, dithering old fools create a god that is vicious, bigoted and dithering.


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