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NewsReal Sunday: “Reverend” Billy Talen Exploits God to Further Leftist Agenda

November 29, 2009

What’s in a name?  For decades the Left has attacked the Religious Right for any mention of one name in particular – Jesus Christ.  Evangelical conservatives have been told it was wrong to mention Bible verses or the Savior when debating issues of law or politics. Lately it has become clear that the no-Jesus rule only applies to one side of the political spectrum.

Most readers of NewsReal or viewers of cable news have probably noticed that Jesus’ name is being thrown out there for everything from supporting President Barack Obama, to ending capitalism, to promoting health care reform.  Not surprisingly, many on the Left will simultaneously say that it is wrong to use Jesus in opposition to government-funded abortion in health care, and then respond that what Jesus really wants is socialized medicine.

This week, CNN American Morning took Jesus propoganda a step further by doing an interview with ‘Reverend’ Billy Talen.  Talen is a left-wing activist who pretends to be an ordained minister to attack consumerism and big business.  He has been arrested many times for using illegal tactics in his attempts to bring down big stores like Disney and Wal-Mart. CNN does Talen a favor by ignoring the fact the man is a wing-nut and treating him like a voice of reason.

Talen: “It can’t be a shopping economy…that’s just not working…We can’t just be a debtor nation anymore…fossil fuel everywhere, plastic everywhere, credit card and everybody in debt.  We can’t continue that, so we are looking for an alternative.  Stop shopping but start giving.”

Talen is able to wrap his anti-capitalist views in with common sense statements about problems with debt. His use of religion is another tool to help his message not seem so extreme. Anyone who has studied Saul Alinsky will recognize where Talen is getting his strategy.

Like many anti-capitalists, Talen is also promoting environmentalism over business. Again, he tries to hide his extremism by framing his views in the language of middle America.

“Local shopping… is better for the earth…This year we should give to the earth.  It’s a good gift to promise.”

Talen then tells CNN he got a letter from a father who promised his family that he will give to the earth by weatherizing his home. The interviewer doesn’t think to ask Talen where dear old dad is going to buy that material to weatherize his home.

Talen is a good example of today’s Left. He’s a fraud. He’s a fake priest who uses terminology he doesn’t really believe in to convince people of his anti-American views.  There are cable news guys and Democratic politicians doing that every day – just without the priest collar. The next time these guys want to use Jesus for their propaganda, they’d do well to remember a certain top ten commandment:

You shall not misuse the name of the LORD your God, for the LORD will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name. Exodus 20:7

61 Comments
  1. Paul permalink
    November 29, 2009 5:56 am

    Just another wack job environmentalist who would love to see our economy sink deeper and deeper into the crapper.

    And he’s a member of the “Green Party”. Wasn’t Van Jones just hired by the same “Green Party” to be a future Presidential Pick? I can see great things coming from this, jeezo.

    Who here thinks the guy looks like a pop icon from the 1980s?

  2. November 29, 2009 6:00 am

    Wow…I missed this guy! What a bunch of hogwash!!!

    Thanks for posting this. Utter blasphemy… I love how he throws in an “amen” and a “hallelujah” here and there.

    Here is his website: http://www.revbilly.com/

    Here is something from his site I found most telling: “The indigenous holy days that rise from the solstice, i. e. Christmas, Kwanzaa, Hannakah and all the rest – offer us an unseen opportunity. This is the day that there is seconds more light and heat, as the earth and sun roll back toward what will become the unleashing of life called Spring. So the holidays in late December are the seed of change. Christmas is radical, and life is out of our control. All we can do is pray for the best, honor it, because it is the beginning of a miracle. It’s not a Consumer event.”

    Yeah, let’s worship the creation, instead of the Creator! The enemy sure is good at blinding people…

  3. Carterthewriter permalink
    November 29, 2009 6:07 am

    CNN has fallen off the left cliff.

    • Paul permalink
      November 29, 2009 6:08 am

      They fell off willingly a few years ago. And they made sure it was the farthest drop.

  4. Jeff Strange permalink
    November 29, 2009 7:02 am

    This article is right on the money. However, the problem of leftwing ministers promoting ideology is happening everywhere across america. In my hometown of Bloomington Illinois there are several leftist ministers and a few have written letters to the editor stating that real christians would support government run healthcare. In addition, eleven churches in our community are also members of the Central Illinos Organizing Project which is a downstate branch of the Leftist National Peoples Action which recently held the Showdown in Chicago (Shakedown).

    • Carterthewriter permalink
      November 29, 2009 8:45 am

      I don’t know how they can support a party that encourages aetheists and gays. We live in a sick society when religion is used to support any ones lifestyle, economically speaking. Morality is no longer considered, apparently.

  5. Pops permalink
    November 29, 2009 11:05 am

    Fools that use the Lords name and the race card like handing out candy to trick or treaters.
    Shame on them….Many descriptors in scripture to describe these people, hypocrites, false teachers, false prophets, white washed tombs, idoloters, brood of vipers………
    Oh Lord what dark hearts they have…….Forgive them for they know not who they are messing with……

  6. Mickey Mephistopheles permalink
    November 29, 2009 11:52 am

    Oh, you’re just jealous because Rev. Billy has a funner cult.

  7. Quilty permalink
    November 29, 2009 2:27 pm

    Wow! This guy actually makes sense! I think there’s a lot of truth in what he is saying. Bess him!

  8. Fredrich permalink
    November 29, 2009 3:44 pm

    How is promoting the protection of the Earth and rejecting the consumerist side of Christmas anti-Christian extremism? Shouldn’t Christmas be more about Jesus than buying presents for people?

    • Paul Cooper permalink
      November 29, 2009 6:05 pm

      Fredrich,
      I didn’t say that all he says is wrong. I wrote about he talks about common sense stuff, but intertwines anti-American messages within it. And yes, Christmas should be more about Jesus. The article has nothing to do with that topic.

  9. jean jae permalink
    November 29, 2009 4:21 pm

    Reverend Billy never pretended to be ordained. His ideas are more christian than the fundamentalists’ ravings. He preaches family values in the true sense. Get the full story before writing.

    • Paul Cooper permalink
      November 29, 2009 6:07 pm

      Jean Jae,
      Never pretended to be ordained? His whole thing is pretending. He’s a political performance artist that is acting and pretending to be a reverend.
      There’s nothing Christian about his ideas though (as you claim) – he doesn’t even pretend to claim being a Christian. What full story are you reading?

      • hey permalink
        November 29, 2009 6:11 pm

        “I like your Christ, but I do not like your Christians, your Christians are nothing like your Christ.”

        -Gandhi

        Rev Billy is more like Christ than anyone on the Christian Right or anyone who is part of the bogus “prosperity gospel” movement.

        • Paul Cooper permalink
          November 30, 2009 10:26 am

          hey,
          In what ways is Billy like Christ? Give me some examples by comparing things he said or does with things Christ said or did.

    • Steve R permalink
      November 30, 2009 11:15 am

      I would inquire of JJ just how much of the New Testament, and Jesus’s teachings, she’s really familiar with. And, given that her post is really a shot at “fundamentalist Christians,” about which she knows only what the MSM tells her, I hear a screed, a shriek, and more than a whiff of “liberal” intolerance.

      • hey permalink
        December 1, 2009 11:25 am

        Can’t pull that crap on me, Steve R: I grew up in the Pentacostal Church (as I am sure some of Billy’s other supporters have) so I know what I am talking about when I criticize fundamentalist Christianity.

  10. Pops permalink
    November 29, 2009 5:15 pm

    He pretends to be by virtue of the collar he wears and by calling himself reverend. Men who value Gods Word wear the collar after years of learning and heed to a call that is higher than this shyster. He fits in with the snake oil salesman that we have in the White House. He supports family values also, like voting to kill babies that were born alive. Sounds like family values to me. If you think this sham is ok, it is no wonder this country is in the sad state that it is in. You are the problem, not the solution. Get to the doctor immediately and see if he can pull your head out

    • Badger permalink
      November 30, 2009 6:52 am

      Really? Years of learning? Just type in “Become an ordained minister online for free” and browse the 147,000,000 entries. It ain’t that hard. He’s as valid as any other I’ve seen.

      • Steve R permalink
        November 30, 2009 11:19 am

        I suppose you have browsed all 147-million of those entries, given the note of certainty in your post. Well, here’s some certainty back atcha. I believe Reverend Billy is a bonafide ordained man of the cloth the same as “Reverend” Jesse Jackson, or Calypso Louis Farakahn.

        • Badger permalink
          November 30, 2009 11:29 am

          Hee hee. Please keep posting. It makes my job so much easier!

        • hey permalink
          December 1, 2009 11:29 am

          Jackson is ordained, and Badger is right, you can send about 50 bucks to any outfit and become ordained, there really is no screening process. kenneth Copeland, Jimmy Swaggart, T.D. Jakes, Joel Osteen, Pat Robertson, Billy Graham and many other flock fleecers in this country are ordained.

  11. Sharpie permalink
    November 29, 2009 5:31 pm

    You do realize that he’s a performance artist, right?

    • Paul Cooper permalink
      November 29, 2009 6:10 pm

      Sharpie,
      Yes, that’s why I wrote about him “pretending” to be an ordained minister. Did you read the whole article?

      • Kenneth Quentin Waters permalink
        November 30, 2009 6:12 am

        “pretending” to be an ordained minister? Would you say , Denis Franz was “pretending” to be a cop on NYPD Blue? No, it’s a role, a perfromance. The man does not claim to be Christian.

        and yes MUCH of what he says is much more Christian than many a Christian says or lives. Calling for responsible use of resources is not a message of evil or false/phony claim about the reality of modern American society.

        We (Americans) are consumption PIGS. Not basing an entire economy on consumption is NOT anti-capitalist. Waste, useless products,mega-million dollar “bonuses”, and over-consumption are not required for a healthy economy. Today’s “American Capitalism” is one of pure greed not need.

  12. November 29, 2009 5:36 pm

    You know, before you all put this man down, you’d be wise to watch two very interesting documentaries on Mr. Talen, how he got his start, and his message. One is called “Reverend Billy and the Stop Shopping Choir” and the other is “What Would Jesus Buy?” He started as a performance artist which is where the reverend persona came from. He has a lot of good things to say, and many are listening.

    • Paul Cooper permalink
      November 29, 2009 6:09 pm

      TT,
      I mention in the article that he has good things to say. Sadly he says those things to mask his anti-American views.

      • hey permalink
        November 30, 2009 1:52 pm

        that’s the thing Paul, “anti-American views” you really are a one trick pony, making sweeping generalizations and using those for your arguments.

  13. Andy permalink
    November 29, 2009 5:55 pm

    Sorry Mr. Cooper, you’ve got this story all wrong.

    Many Christians that I know understand exactly what Billy Talen is saying and doing and they deeply appreciate his efforts to wrest the holidays back from crass commercialism, oppressive debt, and environmental destruction. Just like Reverend Billy, they believe the holidays should be about friends, family, community, love, and giving not buying.

    The Christians that I know are deeply offended by the implication that Christmas is for sale in such things as the new holiday slogan “Christmas costs less at Wall-Mart” but they applaud and support what Reverend Billy is doing.

    What would Jesus buy anyhow?
    http://wwjbmovie.com/

    • Steve R permalink
      November 30, 2009 11:22 am

      I suggest that Obama’s nosediving economy and rising unemployment, with higher taxes about to kick in next year is doing more to de-commercialize Christmas than Reverend whatzisname.

      • Jade permalink
        December 1, 2009 2:33 pm

        Steve R,

        You are either uninformed or a very wicked person. Not sure which, but I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt and suggest that you need to read more sources of information than Fox News’ website, or whatever else it is you’re using to formulate your thinking.

        “Obama’s nosediving economy” is actually the result of Bush’s incredible and historic mismanagement of this nation’s finances. Obama has been in office less than a year, and is trying desperately to unwind the MOUNTAINS of debt and crushingly bad financial decisions made over 8 years of misbegotten wars, tax breaks for the wealthy and complete disregard for the future economy of this country.

        Bush, Cheney, and the rest of the scum who turned the surplus economy they received at the beginning of their administration into the worst national debt crisis we have ever faced, should be rotting in jail.

        Don’t try to pin it on Obama, who hasn’t even had a full term to deal with the idiocy and/or evil of the past two. That’s just pathetic rhetoric.

        Oh, and the higher taxes set to kick in next year? Well, to be perfectly clear that is simply the effect of allowing a temporary, fat tax break for the wealthy to expire as it was originally set to do by — can you guess it? Yes, you’re right, George W. Bush, and his cronies in Congress, who put money into the pockets of the wealthiest Americans, at the expense of the rest of the country and the national deficit, since we had to borrow money from China to pay for the wars we could no longer afford on our own…

        Please. If you are going to complain about Obama, complain about something he’s actually responsible for, not things he’s trying to fix as a result of the mismanagement of this nation by his predecessor.

        Thanks.

        • hey permalink
          December 1, 2009 3:07 pm

          I’m sorry, Jade, nothing personal, I support Rev Billy as well, but Bush’s wars have become Obama’s wars: we are still in Iraq and Obama is expanding the war in Afghanistan, a failed strategy.

          Obama did inherit the deficit from the horrible and criminal Bush administration, for sure, but Obama, along with McCain supported the SCAM bailout, the giving away of billions of our dollars. It is BOTh parties that are to blame, we have a right-wing party(R) and a center-right wing party (D).

          • Jade permalink
            December 1, 2009 6:37 pm

            Hey,

            Not taking it personally. Vibrant debate is crucial to the success of our democracy. Happy to have a dialogue with someone who isn’t a demagogue.

            Don’t get me wrong – I support Rev Billy, and that’s the primary point of my desire to post on this forum. Everything else I’m about to say is completely off that topic. However, I feel as a self-identified Progressive voter, that the rhetoric you put forth needs to be challenged – respectfully, and with a sense of understanding about the root issues.

            So, with respect to the points you have raised above, I guess I just have to say that unwinding our nation from a war where the infrastructure we’d leave behind isn’t in place to support a peaceful transition, would not be to anyone’s benefit. By dint of taking on the Presidency, yes both wars are now Obama’s to deal with. However, I disagree significantly with your inference that he’s handling it incorrectly, or perhaps the same as Bush did.

            To be perfectly clear, I want us out of Iraq and Afghanistan as quickly as possible. The “rub” in this argument is the definition of “possible”.

            As a candidate, Obama pretty clearly said that he’d stop escalating and get out of Iraq as quickly as possible. I still have faith he’ll make good on that, based on what he’s said and done so far. Getting out of Iraq couldn’t reasonably be accomplished in less than a year, considering how deep were were “in”. So, while you’re correct that we’re still there, I’m not in agreement that he’s failed to get us out yet, and he is clearly moving in that direction. Generally, I’m inclined to give him a bit of a break on the fact that *just logistically* it would take months to get all of our people and equipment out of that hellhole. Let alone doing so in a fashion that leaves some semblance of order in our wake. I believe he’ll get it done. He’s been in office for less than a year. Patience and wisdom are required to do this right, in the face of the idiocy that got us into the mess originally.

            As for Afghanistan, well, he also said he’d prosecute the situation in Afghanistan (and even potentially Pakistan) with much GREATER vigor than his predecessor, since that’s where the group that attacked us was/is located. So, I’m not sure what is surprising about his decision to do … exactly that. I think the greatest difference between him and his predecessor in this regard, however, is that at the same time he has stated the intention to bring the fight to our *actual antagonists*, he has also given a time frame for how long he expects it to take, and when he’s planning to leave. And you can’t say that his strategy in Afghanistan is a failed strategy quite yet, since it hasn’t even unfolded. While I don’t serve in the military, I have lots of friends who do, and they universally hate the wars in both countries, but they do believe in what we’re trying to do in Afghanistan. A good friend who is a Marine and I chatted about it today, and he’s fully prepared to go back there (it will be his third tour), and he’s pleased to know that there are going to be clear objectives with a clear end in sight this time around.

            Finally, regarding the TARP bailout, rest assured that I share your disappointment in how that was all handled. However, I’d like to point out that, again, he’s not been in office for very long, and financial experts on both sides of the aisle gave (I think poor) advice that he should move forward with it. I’d bet if he were asked today what he would do with the knowledge he has now, he’d have tried to do something different. He’s already pushing to make some different things happen on the mortgage lending side, as the Banks basically took all of the money they could get, and then turtled up, basically sticking it to consumers and home owners anyway.

            Trying to steer the US Economy is more like trying to turn a cruise ship than a speed boat. When he took the helm, we were pointed straight at an iceberg. The fact that we’d hit it and take damage was a foregone conclusion. All he can do now is try to turn it in a way that minimizes the damage, so that we can repair it and hopefully not sink. That means more of us need to be bailing out the water, than shouting at him that he’s not turning fast enough.

            I’m not a fan of the “100 Days” and other short term measurements for Obama, because the issues he has to deal with are far too complicated for pithy sound bites to explain, and rapid decisions to cure.

            Yes, it’s now Obama’s war, and Obama’s economy, so to speak. However, I think he deserves a bit more time before we start passing judgment on what he’s done to fix the *8 years in the making pile of dung* he was handed on his inauguration day.

            • hey permalink
              December 2, 2009 4:09 am

              I do not appreciate your calling my original post, “rhetoric”; I have posted the truth. You are carrying water for Obama and being a dogmatic, partisan Democrat, you need to start being objective.

              Most of the people who were driving those planes on 9/11 were Saudi, not Afghani, as is Bin Laden. The people of Afghanistan did not attack us, yet they are suffering the consequences; our government supported the Taliban and gave the 4 million dollars for declaring that “growing opium is against the will of God.” This was only a few months before 9/11 occurred, so we didn’t go in to “liberate women” who are still not liberated. The US will never defeat those warlords in Afghanistan, just ask the former Soviet Union, the true leadership (not the US- installed puppet, illegitimate government of Karzai) is local, within the villages, and they resent centralized power, which is what the US is supporting. I am sorry, but you either support or oppose US Empire, you cannot have it both ways. When Obama won the Nobel Peace Prize, even Rev Billy issued a statement letting everyone knows how Orwellian such an award for Obama was. So you can listen to your buddy in the Marines who is being fed Pentagon propaganda, or you can think critically, your choice.

              As far as Iraq, under Obama’s watch, we are establishing permanent military bases, you can espouse all of the empty rhetoric and apologies that you wish on this issue, but Obama won the White House with the true progressive/anti-war vote (not just the votes of blind partisan Democrats) by opposing the invasion in Iraq. And Bush would not have been able to carry out the war in Iraq without the blind support of the Democrats. Did you know that much of what Bush carried out was under Clinton? the PATRIOT Act started under Clinton’s Effective Death Penalty Act as well. And it was Clinton/Gore who called for “regime change”. And it was the Clinton Adminstration that pushed through brutal sanctions in Iraq that UNICEF said killed 5,000 children under the age of 5 per month for over a decade.

              As far as the TARP bailout, there were many experts who said that this was not the way to go, they were shut out of the mainstream media, and House members on the Black Caucus, some who are in my state, voted against it the first time, and Obama lobbied them to pass it. The American people in mass numbers were calling Congress telling them not to pass it, like with the Iraq War, the American people knew the score when Henry Paulson, the former CEO of Goldman Sachs, was clearly feeding them a bunch of lies. If we taxed Wall Street transactions, as Ralph Nader proposes, along with installing tighter regulations, we would have more than enough money to balance the budget.

              Glad I could add some root analysis to your empty, partisan rhetoric.

              • Jade permalink
                December 2, 2009 12:47 pm

                Hey,

                Sorry if my post seemed insulting to you. I actually meant it as a fairly generous and fair minded set of comments.

                You seem to be displeased with my use of the word rhetoric, and clearly mistook my meaning. From the usage, I expected you could see that I meant it with the following definition from dictionary.com: rhet·o·ric (rět’ər-ĭk) n. 1. The art or study of using language effectively and persuasively. Quite frankly, it was more of a compliment to your writing skills than anything else.

                Clearly, you’re well read and informed. So am I.

                Your comments about being a water carrier for Obama, or anyone, are not accurate. Just because I don’t agree with your views doesn’t mean I am dogmatic, nor biased. Telling me that I need to be more objective or to think more critically, is… well, I’ll leave off insults and just say that you were being unkind in your assessment of my motives, my ability to think for myself, and my ability to form my own opinions. Suffice it say that I disagree with you.

                For you to say that you have posted the “truth” is an interesting comment. You have posted what you *believe to be the truth*, based on what you have read, heard, etc. I accept that wholeheartedly, and am totally willing to consider your points of view. It doesn’t make either of us bad people when we don’t agree…

                So, to the points you raised;

                I am aware of the nationality of the 9/11 terrorists. I am also aware of the fact that terrorism is not about nationalism, it is about idealism (fanaticism, really). Ergo, it makes no difference what their nationality was, nor does it matter what nation they are operating in. The source of most modern Islamist terrorists is actually in subverted teachings of the Quran, in specially funded and operated Madrasahs (schools) in numerous countries, Pakistan and Afghanistan being large among them. The source of the funding for these schools, in addition to the schools themselves (terrorist/fundamentalist groups) should be a primary target for our anti-terrorism efforts. But that’s a different matter.

                To your point that the Afghani people didn’t attack us, I agree. However, the Taliban regime not only allowed the terrorist group that did attack us safe harbor in their country, they were products of these same types of schools. I am sure that you know Talib means “student”. The reference is to being students of the very Madrasahs that I mentioned above, where hatred and destruction of America/Western ideals and Democracy/etc. is effectively preached as being part of “God’s will” to young boys, so that they’ll willingly strap jackets of C-4 to their bodies and blow things and people up for Allah. Furthermore, while I totally agree with you that we didn’t go to Afghanistan to liberate women (and I never said that), I think it’s fair to point out that the Afghani people were suffering worse under the Taliban than they have been since we arrived on the scene. This isn’t meant to suggest that we should stay longer than we have to, but rather to point out that Afghanistan wasn’t all that awesome under Taliban rule, and wasn’t likely to get any better on its own. It isn’t even meant to suggest that things are “good” there now, they aren’t – it’s bad, and I personally wouldn’t want to live there, so I’m glad I don’t.

                Additionally, I never said anything about being in support of US Empire. Your statement that I must or must not, isn’t true. I can say I support taking military action, with a specific set of goals, and then bringing our troops home. Not an act of empire, but an act of force in response to a circumstance that can only be solved by force. This is, essentially, what Obama has announced he wants to do… Did you listen to or read his speech from last night? He’s not interested in trying to conquer the warlords of Afghanistan. He’s shown several times that he’s smarter than that. And, he’s pretty much doing exactly what he promised as a candidate. He’s started reducing combat operations in Iraq, and he’s escalating them in Afghanistan. In speech after speech as a candidate, that’s what he said he’d do, so why is it such a surprise to people? Why would you equate his statement that he’s escalating troops to match the requests of his generals for resources they say they need to accomplish the goals he’s set for them, with an act of US Empire? Especially when, against the opinion of many Republicans, he has clearly stated his endgame? What do you suggest instead? We just leave, right now, and bring all of our troops home? What do you think will happen in Afghanistan if we do that? Do you really think that would be our smartest move? Are you suggesting that Afghanistan will become some sort of utopian paradise if we just get the heck out of there ASAP? The problem I have with the suggestion we leave immediately, is that it ignores the reality that we have messed the place up horribly, already (under Bush). So, it seems to me that we should probably try to restore the *possibility* of order, before we leave. Leaving right now would make that *impossible* – in my opinion. If you think differently, I’m all ears – tell me how it would be better.

                With respect to Iraq. Well, here are a few things to consider just in response to the issues you raised. Yes, we’re establishing permanent military bases. However, fewer than planned under Bush, and with the goal of dismantling other military bases in the region. Unless we are going to eliminate military bases around the globe, it makes sense to put them in the best strategic locations, and from a military perspective Iraq is pretty darn strategic. If you think removing all of our military bases around the globe is a good idea, I’m not going to debate that – I don’t necessarily disagree. I think it’s silly for us to try to play the role of world cop. However, if we are going to have any, they should be in the best places. Also, putting bases in Iraq could allow us to get out of Saudi Arabia, which would be, well, very smart. I’m guessing you probably know why that would be smart, but if not – it’s because our bases in Saudi Arabia are a chief complaint of many Islamic fundamentalists (including Osama Bin Laden), due to the fact that our soldiers are effectively in control of Mecca. I’m sure you are also aware that Osama Bin Laden hates the Saudi government, and they hate him, right?

                And yes, I know about the failures of diplomacy and inaction on the part of Clinton/Gore with respect to Iraq (and Afghanistan, while we’re at it). However, it’s a bit specious to say that the UNICEF report that 5,000 children died in Iraq while the country was under “brutal” sanctions was somehow unavoidably our fault. Iraq/Saddam could have easily ended those sanctions at any time, by complying with the UN resolutions he ignored until he was deposed. It’s not like the UN was asking for anything unreasonable, considering his actions in Kuwait. What would your preferred policy have been, in place of the attempt to use sanctions to force a change in Iraq’s behavior? The two that come to my mind would be, ignore the problem that Iraq had become under Saddam’s rule, or use military action. Got something else in mind? I’d be interested to hear about what would have been better, please.

                With respect to TARP, maybe you missed that I agreed with you on this item, for the most part. The difference in our views is that, while I was disappointed in the way things were handled, I’m willing to give Obama a mulligan on it, since it was so early in his Administration as to be nearly an inherited item (in fact, it really was an inherited item). I didn’t support it at the time, and am hoping for a better “Round 2″ effort from Obama’s team. Saying that I am a water-carrier for Obama, and ignoring my comments about TARP was pretty unfair of you, in my opinion. ;)

                Now, I don’t agree with Nader’s idea to tax stock transactions, because a simple stock transaction does not guarantee there is a profit being made in the long run. That only happens when the stock is actually sold, which is already taxed. I think it would be a misguided policy that would further stratify participation in the stock market, and widen the gap between haves and have-nots in this country. Plus it would amount to double-taxation on the same activity. I suppose you could instead put a cap on the amount allowed as a write off for stock losses, though, which could be a big revenue gain for the government. Really, there are all kinds of ways that we could reduce the costs of government in this country (which should be our first priority), as well as to increase revenue for the government to operate (a distant second priority).

                How about we stop the insane “war on drugs” (we have 5% of the world’s population, but nearly a quarter of the world’s prison population)? Legalize and tax marijuana, allow the production of industrial hemp, and eliminate unnecessary subsidies (farming, ethanol production, etc.), eliminate the bulk of our “foreign aid” (payoffs to dictators around the globe for the most part), and so on. We could easily balance our nation’s budget if we had the political will to do so. However, that’s a different conversation, and probably more germane to the original topic. Reverend Billy’s ideas along these lines deserve some thought.

                So, there’s just one thing I have to say before I sign this monster of a post off, and while it may sound harsh, it’s really from the heart. You are completely out of line with your comments about my friend in the Marines. Your comment about him thinking what he does because he’s fed Pentagon propaganda is not acceptable. Quite certainly, he is subjected to military propaganda, as are all soldiers. However, the implication that he’s not capable of discerning the truth about what he’s being told by the Pentagon, versus what is actually happening seems a bit arrogant on your part. First off, he graduated West Point with honors, and is a brilliant critical thinker. Secondly, he has chosen to stay in the military for the express purpose of being an agent of change within it, which is, by the way, the ONLY way that it is going to change. Thirdly, he’s an officer who was offered the ability to get out of his next deployment, but he chose to stay with his combat command, and his men. I hope fervently for his safe return, as he is exactly the kind of person we NEED in the military, as well as a dear friend. I’d like to see you apologize for your comment on this.

                Generally, the thing that struck me the most about your reply was how willing you were to be insulted by someone who’s mostly on your side of the debate. I would caution you that sounding like a left wingnut isn’t better than sounding like a right wingnut. As one of the more “right” leaning posters in this thread said, we need a return to respectful debate if we’re going to really solve anything in this country. Especially among those of us who are willing to be critical of our leaders, while still supporting the majority of their efforts and goals.

                Kind regards,

                Jade

              • Jade permalink
                December 2, 2009 1:02 pm

                Hey,

                Sorry if my post seemed insulting to you. I actually meant it as a fairly generous and fair minded set of comments.

                You seem to be displeased with my use of the word rhetoric, and clearly mistook my meaning. From the usage, I expected you could see that I meant it with the following definition from dictionary.com: rhet·o·ric (rět’ər-ĭk) n. 1. The art or study of using language effectively and persuasively. Quite frankly, it was more of a compliment to your writing skills than anything else.

                Clearly, you’re well read and informed. So am I.

                I just need to say that your comments about being a water carrier for Obama, or anyone, are not accurate. Just because I don’t agree with your views doesn’t mean I am dogmatic, nor biased. Telling me that I need to be more objective or to think more critically, is… well, I’ll leave off insults and just say that you were being unkind in your assessment of my motives, my ability to think for myself, and my ability to form my own opinions. Suffice it say that I disagree with you.

                For you to say that you have posted the “truth” is an interesting comment. You have posted what you *believe to be the truth*, based on what you have read, heard, etc. I accept that wholeheartedly, and am totally willing to consider your points of view. It doesn’t make either of us bad people when we don’t agree…

                So, to the points you raised;

                I am aware of the nationality of the 9/11 terrorists. I am also aware of the fact that terrorism is not about nationalism, it is about idealism (fanaticism, really). Ergo, it makes no difference what their nationality was, nor does it matter what nation they are operating in. The source of most modern Islamist terrorists is actually in subverted teachings of the Quran, in specially funded and operated Madrasahs (schools) in numerous countries, Pakistan and Afghanistan being large among them. The source of the funding for these schools, in addition to the schools themselves (terrorist/fundamentalist groups) should be a primary target for our anti-terrorism efforts. But that’s a different matter.

                To your point that the Afghani people didn’t attack us, I agree. However, the Taliban regime not only allowed the terrorist group that did attack us safe harbor in their country, they were products of these same types of schools. I am sure that you know Talib means “student”. The reference is to being students of the very Madrasahs that I mentioned above, where hatred and destruction of America/Western ideals and Democracy/etc. is effectively preached as being part of “God’s will” to young boys, so that they’ll willingly strap jackets of C-4 to their bodies and blow things and people up for Allah. Furthermore, while I totally agree with you that we didn’t go to Afghanistan to liberate women (and I never said that), I think it’s fair to point out that the Afghani people were suffering worse under the Taliban than they have been since we arrived on the scene. This isn’t meant to suggest that we should stay longer than we have to, but rather to point out that Afghanistan wasn’t all that awesome under Taliban rule, and wasn’t likely to get any better on its own. It isn’t even meant to suggest that things are “good” there now, they aren’t – it’s bad, and I personally wouldn’t want to live there, so I’m glad I don’t.

                Additionally, I never said anything about being in support of US Empire. Your statement that I must or must not, isn’t true. I can say I support taking military action, with a specific set of goals, and then bringing our troops home. Not an act of empire, but an act of force in response to a circumstance that can only be solved by force. This is, essentially, what Obama has announced he wants to do… Did you listen to or read his speech from last night? He’s not interested in trying to conquer the warlords of Afghanistan. He’s shown several times that he’s smarter than that. And, he’s pretty much doing exactly what he promised as a candidate. He’s started reducing combat operations in Iraq, and he’s escalating them in Afghanistan. In speech after speech as a candidate, that’s what he said he’d do, so why is it such a surprise to people? Why would you equate his statement that he’s escalating troops to match the requests of his generals for resources they say they need to accomplish the goals he’s set for them, with an act of US Empire? Especially when, against the opinion of many Republicans, he has clearly stated his endgame? What do you suggest instead? We just leave, right now, and bring all of our troops home? What do you think will happen in Afghanistan if we do that? Do you really think that would be our smartest move? Are you suggesting that Afghanistan will become some sort of utopian paradise if we just get the heck out of there ASAP? The problem I have with the suggestion we leave immediately, is that it ignores the reality that we have messed the place up horribly, already (under Bush). So, it seems to me that we should probably try to restore the *possibility* of order, before we leave. Leaving right now would make that *impossible* – in my opinion. If you think differently, I’m all ears – tell me how it would be better.

                With respect to Iraq. Well, here are a few things to consider just in response to the issues you raised. Yes, we’re establishing permanent military bases. However, fewer than planned under Bush, and with the goal of dismantling other military bases in the region. Unless we are going to eliminate military bases around the globe, it makes sense to put them in the best strategic locations, and from a military perspective Iraq is pretty darn strategic. If you think removing all of our military bases around the globe is a good idea, I’m not going to debate that – I don’t necessarily disagree. I think it’s silly for us to try to play the role of world cop. However, if we are going to have any, they should be in the best places. Also, putting bases in Iraq could allow us to get out of Saudi Arabia, which would be, well, very smart. I’m guessing you probably know why that would be smart, but if not – it’s because our bases in Saudi Arabia are a chief complaint of many Islamic fundamentalists (including Osama Bin Laden), due to the fact that our soldiers are effectively in control of Mecca. I’m sure you are also aware that Osama Bin Laden hates the Saudi government, and they hate him, right?

                And yes, I know about the failures of diplomacy and inaction on the part of Clinton/Gore with respect to Iraq (and Afghanistan, while we’re at it). However, it’s a bit specious to say that the UNICEF report that 5,000 children died in Iraq while the country was under “brutal” sanctions was somehow unavoidably our fault. Iraq/Saddam could have easily ended those sanctions at any time, by complying with the UN resolutions he ignored until he was deposed. It’s not like the UN was asking for anything unreasonable, considering his actions in Kuwait. What would your preferred policy have been, in place of the attempt to use sanctions to force a change in Iraq’s behavior? The two that come to my mind would be, ignore the problem that Iraq had become under Saddam’s rule, or use military action. Got something else in mind? I’d be interested to hear about what would have been better, please.

                With respect to TARP, maybe you missed that I agreed with you on this item, for the most part. The difference in our views is that, while I was disappointed in the way things were handled, I’m willing to give Obama a mulligan on it, since it was so early in his Administration as to be nearly an inherited item (in fact, it really was an inherited item). I didn’t support it at the time, and am hoping for a better “Round 2″ effort from Obama’s team. Saying that I am a water-carrier for Obama, and ignoring my comments about TARP was pretty unfair of you, in my opinion. ;)

                Now, I don’t agree with Nader’s idea to tax stock transactions, because a simple stock transaction does not guarantee there is a profit being made in the long run. That only happens when the stock is actually sold, which is already taxed. I think it would be a misguided policy that would further stratify participation in the stock market, and widen the gap between haves and have-nots in this country. Plus it would amount to double-taxation on the same activity. I suppose you could instead put a cap on the amount allowed as a write off for stock losses, though, which could be a big revenue gain for the government. Really, there are all kinds of ways that we could reduce the costs of government in this country (which should be our first priority), as well as to increase revenue for the government to operate (a distant second priority).

                How about we stop the insane “war on drugs” (we have 5% of the world’s population, but nearly a quarter of the world’s prison population)? Legalize and tax marijuana, allow the production of industrial hemp, and eliminate unnecessary subsidies (farming, ethanol production, etc.), eliminate the bulk of our “foreign aid” (payoffs to dictators around the globe for the most part), and so on. We could easily balance our nation’s budget if we had the political will to do so. However, that’s a different conversation, and probably more germane to the original topic. Reverend Billy’s ideas along these lines deserve some thought.

                So, there’s just one thing I have to say before I sign this monster of a post off, and while it may sound harsh, it’s really from the heart. You are completely out of line with your comments about my friend in the Marines. Your comment about him thinking what he does because he’s fed Pentagon propaganda is not acceptable. Quite certainly, he is subjected to military propaganda, as are all soldiers. However, the implication that he’s not capable of discerning the truth about what he’s being told by the Pentagon, versus what is actually happening seems a bit arrogant on your part. First off, he graduated West Point with honors, and is a brilliant critical thinker. Secondly, he has chosen to stay in the military for the express purpose of being an agent of change within it, which is, by the way, the ONLY way that it is going to change. Thirdly, he’s an officer who was offered the ability to get out of his next deployment, but he chose to stay with his combat command, and his men. I hope fervently for his safe return, as he is exactly the kind of person we NEED in the military, as well as a dear friend. I’d like to see you apologize for your comment on this.

                Generally, the thing that struck me the most about your reply was how willing you were to be insulted by someone who’s mostly on your side of the debate. I would caution you that sounding like a left wingnut isn’t better than sounding like a right wingnut. As one of the more “right” leaning posters in this thread said, we need a return to respectful debate if we’re going to really solve anything in this country. Especially among those of us who are willing to be critical of our leaders, while still supporting the majority of their efforts and goals.

                Kind regards,

                Jade

  14. hey permalink
    November 29, 2009 6:09 pm

    Horowitz,
    You and your minions are lame, like this writer. All you know how to do is make generalizations and label people, no substance here, never is.

    Rev Billy is awesome, take notes, Paul and Dave, you could learn something.

  15. November 29, 2009 6:23 pm

    If performing and “pretending” are the same thing, I suggest you stop watching TV altogether. Is fiction also sinful, to you ? Your life must be unbearably tedious.

    I also don’t actually see where you get your information about what Rev. Billy does and does not believe. Who are you to say that his beliefs do not come from a very deep and spiritual place? Where do you get off making such assumptions about the beliefs of others?

    Must a person agree with you on everything from the righteousness of Ayn Rand and Glenn beck to the paranoia about the so-called “War on Christmas” in order for their spiritual beliefs to be considered legitimate? This has the ring of fundamentalist jihad to me. America is a pluralistic country where all religions are welcomed for what they have to offer — including the freedom of the individual to reject organized religion altogether and engage in a humanistic ethics not underwritten by any one specific book.

    • Paul Cooper permalink
      November 30, 2009 10:29 am

      Raya, what are you talking about? Are you making an assumption that I think pretending is evil? Where do you get that assumption? Why would I think fiction or pretending or acting are evil? I never said that.

      I got my info. on what Billy believes from him – I’d say that is a pretty good source.

  16. Elizabeth permalink
    November 29, 2009 6:37 pm

    If he hates America so much why is he taking political action to make it better? Just because you disagree with his politics does not mean he “hates America.” He just has different ideas of what would improve the quality of life for most people.

  17. lizzie permalink
    November 29, 2009 7:16 pm

    thank you TT for your accurate comments. billy is actually the epitome of what it is to be an american. we have some very basic issues right now in our country and in our world that need attending to. for one, we are destroying our environment. that has a lot to do with the way we’re living our lives — buying lots of stuff, creating lots of trash, using lots of fossil fuels…just accepting that this is the way it is and that there are no other options. is shopping at wal-mart really an american thing to do? sure, the prices are lower, but that’s because 13 year-olds in china are working 17-hour days to make these items, so they can be shipped across the world and sold to us for less. is that the kind of america any of us want?

    what about an america where we value each other — and those across the globe? what about bringing back jobs that are sorely needed to OUR country? so maybe we’ll pay a few more dollars for a shirt, but we will be nourishing and supporting our own communities. shopping at local businesses means keeping our towns healthy, strong and independent. it means taking care of our neighbors and ourselves — really supporting each other and communicating with each other. i don’t know how this could be construed as “crackpot” or “un-american.” the whole point is to keep this place diverse and interesting and not just a series of chain store strip malls that could be anywhere. and to me it’s the most basic tenets of christianity or any other religion for that matter — love and care for each other, respect each other, respect the planet we live on so that our children and grandchildren will enjoy it too.

    there is indeed a performance art element to what reverend billy does, but it is with the intent of giving the message a different kind of voice — with humor, a bit of surrealism, but ultimately true sincerity.

    • Badger permalink
      November 30, 2009 11:22 am

      Thanks, Lizzie. Never let anyone tell you you’re “anti-American” because you refuse to go into debt buying cheap plastic schlock made in other countries in order to support free-wheeling markets that ultimately reward only the top executives.

  18. Jala Puja permalink
    November 29, 2009 7:38 pm

    Rev Billy is a kind person. If you read more about him, or met him, or watched the documentaries about him and his ideas, perhaps your view would change. He preaches against excessive consumerism, and encourages people to give more and to shop more locally, supporting small businesses as opposed to the multinational global corporate elites.

    Talen’s chief collaborator in developing the Reverend Billy character was the Reverend Sidney Lanier. A cousin of Tennessee Williams with an interest in avant-garde theater, Lanier was then the vicar of St. Clement’s, an Episcopal church in Hell’s Kitchen that doubled as a theatrical space, where Talen was working as house manager. Lanier encouraged Talen, who was suspicious of religious figures after rejecting the conservative Protestantism of his youth, to study radical theologians and performers.
    “What Would Jesus Buy?” is also the title of Reverend Billy’s new book, subtitled “Fabulous Prayers in the Face of the Shopocalypse,” released in March 2007.

    You say Rev Billy is a fraud. What do you call all the many thousands of Catholic priests who are pedophiles and use their position to rape children? What do you call their bishops who just hide the abuse and move the priests form parish to parish, so they can access and molest more children?
    Give me Rev Billy ANY day of the week.

    • LBJtooktheIRT permalink
      December 1, 2009 8:57 am

      Just a footnote – Talen started the Reverend Billy character while he still lived in San Francisco… he’s a long-time friend of Sidney Lanier, long before he moved to NYC.

  19. Sister Carol, Soprano in the Choir permalink
    November 29, 2009 9:21 pm

    Rev Billy is a performance artist. He’s a poet, performer, choir leader and activist.
    He never takes the Lord’s name in vain. He reminds us with humor and art to GIVE more to each other. GIVE more of our time, caring, witness and concern.

    He and his choir stand up for the forgotten. The factory workers at Stella Dora’s nearly 80 yera old factory in NYC who closed shop and nearly 100 people lost their jobs. GOldman Sachs aquired Stella Dora, a perfectly good company, but wanted to squeeze more profits out of it by gettting rid of “extras” like health insurance for the employees. Goldman Sachs destroyed a perfectly well run and profitable company that employed many and kept a whole neighborhood of diners, stores and services for the workers thriving. Now it will all be gone. We (I’m in the choir) held a vigil in honor of these fallen workers.

    We stand in public spaces and use our Free Speech. We are proud patriots hwo still beleilve in a Goverment by the people, of the people and for the people…..WAKE UP the one the Republicans left os with is by the Military Energy Industrial Complex, FOR the same and OF the same.

    Rev Billy is actually sane and sound and sweet and caring and people should lighten up a little and reaaly donate some time this holiday season to helping theri neighbors who are in fear of losing their homes, healthcare and lives (war) due to the Republican Corporate greed run rampant the past 8 years.

    This is a joke, but not a joke. It’s sad and greedy and very anti Christian, not the Rev Billy, but the tenor of this society where the very rich snatch the few life saving amneities from the workiong poor, just to make themselves (the very rich) MORE rich.

    • Steve R permalink
      November 30, 2009 11:31 am

      “We (I’m in the choir) held a vigil in honor of these fallen workers.”

      Which, please tell me, saved how many jobs? How many diners, mom-and-pop stores? mortgages? Or, did it just make y’all feel really, REALLY GOOD — to be out there marching in empathy with the proles. Did any of you “sell all that thou hast, and give to the poor” as Jesus commanded? Or did you pack up your signs, throw a few bucks in the pot, and grab the next train to Westport? How many of you support a church of your choice and annually tithe? This is typical liberal gobbledegook masquerading as Christian teaching — using half the truth to cover up the underlying socialist lie.

      • LBJtooktheIRT permalink
        December 1, 2009 8:45 am

        Steve R wrote,
        “Which, please tell me, saved how many jobs? How many diners, mom-and-pop stores? mortgages? Or, did it just make y’all feel really, REALLY GOOD — to be out there marching in empathy with the proles. Did any of you “sell all that thou hast, and give to the poor” as Jesus commanded? Or did you pack up your signs, throw a few bucks in the pot, and grab the next train to Westport? How many of you support a church of your choice and annually tithe?”

        Steve R, what rock do you live under? Do you think that every action has to have a “successful” outcome, i.e., save 100 jobs, to b worth taking? Do you really think a small group of people can fight the Goldman Sachs of the world without more support? Your ignorant comments are exactly what Rev Billy and his supporters are working against… they are trying to shine the light into the darkness of your mind and heart.

        If YOU would wake up and see what is really happening, Goldman Sachs could not get away with destroying these workers lives. If everyone stood up for each other, instead of spending their time looking for the best deal on crap at Walmart, maybe your “Christian Values” would see the light of day.

        They are supporting a church of their choice. Wake up and smell the compassion.

      • hey permalink
        December 1, 2009 11:32 am

        Ooohhh, the big socialist lie, all of this red-baiting would make McCarthy (Horowitz’s idol) proud.

        Tithe? I give my money to many good causes, you are presumptious.

    • Peachey permalink
      November 30, 2009 11:45 am

      Sister Carol,
      You sound as if you fervently support rev Billy more than you support G_d and His Son Jesus through your misplaced sense of loyalty. Remember that Jesus said that several will come in His name purporting to claim His word. Beware of false prophets and the guile that they use to seduce you into their web. Learn to decern the difference between common wisdom (that which many have lost, and few use) and the sales pitch of a beguiler that seeks your loyalty and of course donations. While his pitch may have common sense merits to it, the underlying message is that of chaos followed by confusing that which is not of G_d and substituting that is what of this earth and it’s follies. Believe that if you separate yourself from rev Billy and turn toward the Lord, you will find that His word is perfect and unerring.Placing your trust in a human being to lead you will only end in disaster. What rev Billy is selling you reinforces your own sense of failure, and commits you to a “victim” mentality. Like a drug addict, you will go back to the drug (rev Billy’s comfort) again and again until you recognize that the source for your comfort and salvation is to be found elsewhere. Once you step back from Billy’s rants and assumptions, you will see the danger and recognize it for what it is, a sneak attack on you relationship with G_d through deception and desires. Good luck to you.

    • Paul Cooper permalink
      November 30, 2009 11:57 am

      “Sister” Carol,
      I agree we should donate time to help those in need. Protesting and shouting down big companies isn’t doing that. Come with me and I’ll take you to some food and clothing banks, some crisis pregnancy centers, or on some third world mission trips. Do work that really helps people.

      • hey permalink
        November 30, 2009 1:56 pm

        Missionaries who prosletyze to those “savages” oh yeah, what a xenophobic and racist point of view. Fundy Chrsitian”Crisis pregnancy centers” full of far-right ideologues who berate and badger the mother until she has the baby and gives it up for adoption then they put her out on the street (and don’t try to argue with this reality, it has been extensively documented).

        Food and clothing banks? We’d have plently of resources for all if the top 1% wasn’t so damned greedy.

        • Paul Cooper permalink
          December 5, 2009 6:20 am

          hey, I wish you actually volunteered or at least observed in those places and projects you mention, so that you would understand you have no idea what you are talking about. But it’s easier to blame the rich and sit home doing nothing isn’t it?

          • hey permalink
            December 5, 2009 7:39 am

            I have observed, I grew up in that culture, and as I said, these abuses from missionaries and people running Christian pregnancy centers have been extensively documented, you can argue with my anecdotal account, but you cannot argue with the record, oh wiat facts do not matter to you, you have made that clear: yet again, you do not even know what the hell you are talking about. This is why all of your posts are getting mostly thumbs down.

            And please do not make ASSumptions about people you do not even know, I am out there, you are the one sitting there writing polemical, fact-free, whining screeds about Rev Billy, another person who is actually doing something. There is more to life than being one of Horowitz’s brainless hacks.

  20. Tom permalink
    November 30, 2009 10:34 am

    Just a correction on the above posts the Billy title is not Reverend is is Un-Reverend

  21. Carterthewriter permalink
    November 30, 2009 10:48 am

    Any mention of religion brings out the best and worse of people. Bang! The debate looses substance.

    This might point out why so many use the pulpit rather than the political arena.

    • Steve R permalink
      November 30, 2009 11:34 am

      and it points out why, in another, more civil, long-forgotten time and place in America it was considered taboo to discuss politics and religion at the dinner table. :-)

      • Carterthewriter permalink
        December 1, 2009 3:34 pm

        It is becoming increasingly difficult to distinguish one from the other today, too.

  22. Jade permalink
    November 30, 2009 2:19 pm

    I’ve actually seen Reverend Billy perform live, and had heard of him quite some time before that.

    He’s a passionate advocate for doing good things, for good reasons. Having heard him say it, I can recount it thus:

    1. Stop spending money you don’t have. People in this country have the worst personal debt vs. savings ratios in the industrialized world.

    2. Consuming goods not made in this country at a higher pace than consuming locally produced goods is the root of our financial woes, particularly when you consider the shipping of local jobs overseas. Seems like simple math: send jobs/salaries overseas + buy things with borrowed money here = screwed up economy.

    3. Don’t buy stuff you don’t actually need, especially when you are already in debt. The corollary to this rule is that you shouldn’t buy things for other people that *they don’t need* either, especially if you are already in debt. (Duh.)

    To hear him say it, he’s very concerned about America and American Values ™, as well as the Earth itself. We are burning up the world’s resources at an incredible rate, to produce plastic key fobs, disposable lighters, throw away pens, and literally mountains of other “one use” pieces of future garbage. Why? Because it’s more profitable to sell things that people will keep re-buying over and over again, than to sell quality straight edge razors that can be handed down for generations.

    Oh, and by the way, can we get off the completely fallacious argument that environmentalism is bad for business?! What a load of crud. Environmentalism is only bad for a lot of *existing* businesses that profit from the status quo. New companies devoted to manufacturing solar panels in good old USA, installation companies that employ local workers to put them on buildings and houses, and customer service jobs that manage post installation needs would all be good for the economy and good for “business”.

    People who complain about moving to a green economy as being bad for America are either uneducated about the facts, on the payroll of one of the companies that would be outdated as a result, or worse – just plain evil. What’s good for America is what’s good for all of us, not just a few of us who are already wealthy.

    • hey permalink
      December 2, 2009 4:18 am

      OKay Jade, I was a little hard on you above, my bad, but everything you post here is spot on. Peace.

      • Jade permalink
        December 2, 2009 1:08 pm

        lol… It’s all good. I just put up a huge reply, before I scrolled down to this one.

        Basically, I try not to insult people overmuch, even when I think they are dead wrong. It’s only when people willingly twist facts to support their arguments that I get snippy. Sorry that my use of the word rhetoric was poorly received. I should have kept in mind that people use the word to insult each other these days, rather than for it’s original purpose.

        Peace to you, too. Hopefully, for all of us some day sooner than later.

  23. Will Marshall permalink
    December 1, 2009 4:22 pm

    From Shakespeare: “…the devil can quote Scripture for his own ends.”

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