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Jesus is Not a Republican: The Religious Right's War on America.

Jesus Is Not a Republican: The Religious Right's War on America

Clint Willis and Nate Hardcastle, eds.

Thunder's Mouth Press

245 West 17th Street, 11th Floor, New York 10011-5300

ISBN: 1560257636, $15.95, 368 pp.

The title says it all. Jesus was a hunchbacked dwarf psychopath. Republicans are much taller. According to the publisher's blurb, "The historical Jesus, by most accounts, was in favor of social justice, peace and compassion." And according to most Muslims, Mohamed was not a terrorist. Unfortunately for the credibility of persons who see Mohamed or Jesus as a nicer man than bin Laden or Torquemada, their sacred writings tell a very different story. Jesus' official biography portrays him as a hate-ridden fanatic who required proselytes to hate their family members who remained outside of his sect (Luke 14:26), and condemned everyone who refused to accept his unsubstantiated claim of messiahship (Mat 12:30) to eternal torture in a Hell than can only be described as a sadist's dream (Mark 9:47-49).

The editors in several places quote the words of Jesus as taken from the translation of Stephen Mitchell, who in the very book they are quoting acknowledges that he only translated those passages that suited his purpose. For example, he shows Jesus saying, "Why do you see the splinter that is in your brother's eye, but don't notice the log that is in your own eye?" He pointedly omits the passage in Luke (16:1-9) where Jesus preaches a sermon that can be summarized, "Cheat those who are no longer useful to you, and use the stolen money to bribe those who are in a position to do you good." Nor do any of Jesus' apologists mention his racist admonition to his apprentices (Mat 10:5), "Don't go anywhere among the infidels, and don't enter any Samaritan town." They likewise omit all references to Jesus' equations of gentiles with dogs (Mark 7:27) and swine (Mat 7:6).

The Introduction to Jesus Is Not a Republican explains (p. ix) that, "Together, certain Christian fundamentalists, Republican politicians and corporate leaders have worked hard to impose their versions of Jesus on the rest of us; they exploit the name of Jesus, making it a marketing tool for power and profit." That is certainly true. It is also true that, "American moguls, snake-oil salesmen and politicians looking to score riches or power will stop at little if they feel it is in their interests to exploit God to achieve those ends" (p. 28). Unfortunately the editors are equally selective in utilizing only those gospel passages that help them impose their own version of Jesus as the nice guy he assuredly was not.

They do, however, acknowledge (p. x) that, "The Gospels offer us more than one version of Christ-including the angry and self-righteous versions." It apparently does not occur to them that a book containing self-contradictory portraits of the same hero can only be fiction.

The chapter, "Jesus is not an end-timer" is plain wrong. Jesus promised his hearers that the end of the world was going to occur within the lifetime of persons listening to him preach: "There are some standing here who are not going to experience death until they have seen Allah's theocracy established by force" (Mark 9:1, The Judaeo-Christian Bible Fully Translated). In other words, Jesus' overthrow of existing regimes and the transportation of the Saved into the sky without passing Go and without collecting $200 was going to occur no later than the reign of the emperor Hadrian. He seems to have been delayed.

The chapter, "Jesus is not Bush's brain," is likewise questionable. Since Jesus, being long dead, currently does not exist, and talking chimpanzee Bush is assuredly lacking a human brain, can one legitimately argue that one nonexistent thing "is not" another nonexistent thing? One could with as much logic argue that the Great Pumpkin is not Santa Claus. The chapter, "Jesus is not a bigot," cannot be harmonized with Mat 10:5 (see above). And the chapter, "Jesus is not a sadist," is fully refuted by the hunchbacked dwarf's transformation of Gehenna from the Essene death chamber in which non-Essenes were exterminated, into the Christian Hell in which the Religious Right's detractors, including moderate Christians, are tortured by flamethrowers for all eternity (Mark 9:47-49). As for "Jesus is not a theocrat": Oh come now!

On the other hand, I fully endorse the observation (p. 294) that, "Paul was a reactionary, power-crazed conservative who believed that God was giving him the exclusive power to set moral absolutes for everyone else, and George Bush is a reactionary ... uh ... Well, maybe there is some common ground after all."

Jesus Is Not a Republican is far from useless. Since its intended market is the majority of believers who support the separation of Church and State, its strategy of inventing a contrast between its idealized Jesus and the Republicanazis is logical if not exactly honest. And it enables the editors to point out that the Republican theocracy currently enslaving America distorts information about condoms that could save millions of lives and prevent unwanted pregnancies; prevents young, poor girls from having safe abortions, while not lifting a finger to protect their children once they are born; spends huge sums to keep a braindead zombie on artificial life support; and does almost nothing to save the thousands of children who die of starvation as a direct consequence of the Republicanazi support for the insane taboos of the theofascist Fuhrer in Rome (p. xiv).

The editors dedicate their book to "the Religious Left." But nowhere other than the dedication do they even refer to the Religious Left. "Right Wing" means fascist, and the Republicanazis are indeed theofascists. "Left Wing" means communist, and the only true Religious Left are such Anabaptist clones as the Amish and Mennonites who practise the communism of the original Jesus sects (Acts 4:34-35). Willis and Hardcastle use the misnomer, "Religious Left," to refer to middle-of-the-road moderates who reject left wing communal living as totally as they reject right wing theocracy. That is perhaps a semantic quibble, but it is a useful illustration of how thoroughly this book misinterprets and falsifies to make its points.

Denigrating the Religious Right by claiming that it distorts and falsifies the teachings of that nice mister Jesus is like denigrating the Gestapo by claiming that it distorted and falsified the teachings of that nice mister Hitler. The Religious Right are self-serving theofascists trying to overthrow democracy and replace it with a totalitarian Republicanazi tyranny run by themselves. Jesus was a self-serving theofascist who died trying to overthrow a worldwide totalitarian tyranny run by Caesar and his Romans, and replace it with a worldwide totalitarian tyranny run by himself and his Jews. In the sense that the editors define the word, Jesus WAS a Republican.
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Author:Harwood, William
Publication:Reviewer's Bookwatch
Article Type:Book review
Date:Jul 1, 2006
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