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Howard Dean Gets Religion!

Election 2004 Howard Dean 2004

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#1 Drew

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Posted 15 January 2004 - 12:03 PM

Howard Dean has announced that when he campaigns in the south, he will, of course, talk about God and Jesus from the stump. (Remember, this is the guy who said that the presidential race should stay away from the issues of 'guns, God and gays' and focus on jobs, healthcare and foreign policy.) Howard Dean will say anything if he thinks it'll get him a vote. He'll even say that his favorite book of the New Testament is "Job."  :p

More here: ---> http://www.crosswalk...html?view=print

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Democratic front-runner Howard Dean is talking a lot about Christianity and religion these days. Or, at least he's talking about something he thinks is Christianity. He says he will have to talk this way to reach southerners. He had better hope they're not listening closely.

Dr. Dean has been telling the press and the public that he now intends to talk about his faith. The announcement caught the media off balance as Dean announced that he would now claim a Christian identity and mention Jesus on the campaign trail. As one might expect, there is a good deal more to this story, and it reveals as much about the American political scene as about Howard Dean.

A former governor of Vermont, Dr. Dean first made his announcement in an interview with the Boston Globe. In the interview, Dean described himself as a committed believer in Jesus Christ and said that he would "include references to Jesus and God in his speeches as he stumps in the South." This came as a shock to the newspaper. Reporter Sarah Schweitzer responded with an understatement: "The move is striking for a man who has steadfastly kept his personal life out of the campaign, rarely offering biographical information, much less his religious beliefs." In reality, Gov. Dean's religious convictions are so private, even he doesn't seem to know what they are.

Howard Dean has run as one of the most secular candidates in the history of American presidential politics. In previous statements, Dean has explained that he does not attend church very often and does not allow his faith to inform his public policy. "My religion doesn't inform my public policy," Dean once explained. Dean also told ABC News commentator George Stephanopoulos that his religious convictions have "nothing" to do with his political career.

In a previous statement Dean simply summarized his personal separation of church and state: "My faith doesn't inform my public policy." Like John F. Kennedy, Dean could have argued that his faith doesn't determine his public policy. But Gov. Dean went far further, arguing that his faith doesn't even inform his public policy.

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Governor Dean attempted to try out his new use of religious language when speaking to an African-American church in Columbia, South Carolina. The Boston Globe reports that Dean changed his tone of voice as well as his message as he told the congregation that "in this house of the Lord, we know that the power rests in God's hands and in Jesus' hands for helping us. But the power also is on this, God's earth--Remember Jesus said, 'render unto God those things that are God's but unto Caesar those things that are Caesar's.'" If that sounds a bit confusing in terms of religious conviction, Dean's other statements will just add to the problem. He told the Boston reporter that "Christ was someone who sought out people who were disenfranchised, people who were left behind." He went on to say, "He fought against self-righteousness of people who had everything...He was a person who set an extraordinary example that has lasted 2000 years, which is pretty inspiring when you think about it." Pretty inspiring when you think about it? That statement is more remarkable for what it doesn't say--when you think about it.


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Gov. Dean may claim to be a "pretty religious" person and a church member, but he doesn't seem to know much about Christianity. Oddly, he doesn't seem to understand how little he knows. Talking to a reporter from The New York Times last week, Dean was asked to name his favorite New Testament book. He named the book of Job, which is, of course, not in the New Testament. The candidate had just claimed to know something about the Bible. Reflecting on a trip to Israel, Dean said, "If you know much about the Bible--which I do--to see and be in a place where Christ was and understand the intimate history of what was going on 2,000 years ago is an exceptional experience."

Dean also said that he doesn't like the way the book ends, apparently thinking that the book leaves Job in torment and despair. When reminded that the book of Job is found in the Old Testament and that Job is returned to health, family, and prosperity, Dean claimed that there are various versions of Job: "It's been a long time since I looked at this, but it's believed that was added much, much later. Many people believe that the original ending was about the power of God and the power of God was almighty and all knowing and it wasn't necessary that everybody was going to be redeemed." There is simply no intelligent response to this gibberish.

(Now, about the above: some scholars do suggest that the "happy ending" of Job was added later. And I also don't like the way Job ends, because I think giving Job everything back is sort of a cheat. But that's a discussion for another day.)
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#2 G1223

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Posted 15 January 2004 - 12:47 PM

Wow color me unsurprised. HHHMMM Say anything that gets you elected. Isn;t that page 2 of the Clinton playbook?

#3 Lord of the Sword

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Posted 15 January 2004 - 12:59 PM

G1223, on Jan 15 2004, 12:47 PM, said:

Wow color me unsurprised. HHHMMM Say anything that gets you elected. Isn;t that page 2 of the Clinton playbook?
Page 2???? I thought it was Page ONE!
"Sometimes you get the point of the sword, sometimes the edge, sometimes the flat of the blade (even if you're the Lord of the Sword) and sometimes you're the guy wielding it. But any day without the Sword or its Lord is one that could've been better  " ~Orpheus.

The Left is inclusive, and tolerant, unless you happen to think and believe different than they do~ Lord of the Sword

Looks like the Liberal Elite of Exisle have finally managed to silence the last remaining Conservative voice on the board.

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#4 Smitty

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Posted 18 January 2004 - 02:36 AM

I like how the Deaniacs :lol: are making him out to be the second coming.
Unfortuantely it's the second coming of George McGovern and Walter Mondale.

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#5 Bad Wolf

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Posted 18 January 2004 - 03:13 PM

Ya know....it's bad enough that he is so transparently insincere (i.e., he obviously will say whatever he thinks his current audience wants to hear), but he also just seems dumb (i.e., he doesn't make efforts to ensure that whatever current insincere spin he's weaving doesn't flatly contradict previous insincere spin).

Alas for my party.  :(
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#6 Lord of the Sword

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Posted 18 January 2004 - 04:08 PM

Smitty, on Jan 18 2004, 02:36 AM, said:

I like how the Deaniacs :lol: are making him out to be the second coming.
Unfortuantely it's the second coming of George McGovern and Walter Mondale.

-cs™
Now why would you want to insult George McGovern and Walter Mondale by comparing them with a brain dead person like Dean?
"Sometimes you get the point of the sword, sometimes the edge, sometimes the flat of the blade (even if you're the Lord of the Sword) and sometimes you're the guy wielding it. But any day without the Sword or its Lord is one that could've been better  " ~Orpheus.

The Left is inclusive, and tolerant, unless you happen to think and believe different than they do~ Lord of the Sword

Looks like the Liberal Elite of Exisle have finally managed to silence the last remaining Conservative voice on the board.

“The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots & tyrants. It is it’s natural manure.” ~Thomas Jefferson

#7 Delvo

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Posted 18 January 2004 - 04:24 PM

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One thing I feel about religion, you have to be very careful not to be a hypocrite if you're a religious person. It's really tough to preach one thing and do something else.
Well, Dean, maybe it would be easier to do and preach the SAME thing!?!

At least he admitted what he's really up to, even if accidentally.

Seriously, though, the article overblows its case a bit. It says over and over again how little Dean understands religion but only comes up with four examples. And look what happens when you take a real look at those four...

1. He says that whether he's saved or not is up to him. The article claims that won't wash with real religious people. What in the world is the author of the article thinking? It's Dean, not the author, who's got this one right. That choice to be saved or not, to accept Jesus's sacrificial gift to us all or reject it, is exactly the way it works for the Southern Christian demographic group he's going for. I'm not religious, and even I get that one, it's such a big, basic building block from which everything else about the religion is supposed to be derived. For that matter, possibly one of the things that annoyed me the most about Southern religion when I lived there was being told repeatedly that I'm choosing to go to Hell. Writing an article on how little somebody else understands religion is a pretty odd thing for someone this clueless about religion himself/herself to do.

2. Dean said that the philosophy of the Pilgrims was anti-authoritarian. OK, it's not true, they were actually here to set up a theocracy of their own without the theocracy of England interfering... but it seems that practically nobody in the USA knows that, so I'm not sure how much blame we can give one man for having grown up hearing the same myth everybody else has always heard, OR call it s stupid or uninformed political decision to play along with it even if he knows it's false. (Granted, it would be insincere, but that's not what they were talking about; they were talking about how little he knows even the obvious basics of religion, and this isn't a case of not knowing something obvious/basic; it's a case of repeating, knowingly or not, a myth that practically everyone buys into.)

3&4. Dean described Jesus's philosophical and historical significance and the author acted like that was wrong or strange, I guess because it sorto implies that that's ALL Jesus was, by failing to mention that whole Messiah thing. And he accurately described the evolution of the book of Job, which is different from the final product in its "fixed" state. What's the connection between these two? They're two aspects of one central mistake. He's talking about scholastic study of the religion instead of the religion itself. I had a bunch more babble about that which I've deleted now to save time, but in the end, the worst case scenario is that this is one honest :o mistake with two specific incarnations, and that's not enough to justify the article's sweeping dismissal of overall religious ignorance. Maybe a case for that can be made, but it really should have more than two evidence points to it.

#8 CJ AEGIS

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Posted 18 January 2004 - 04:41 PM

Una Salus Lillius, on Jan 18 2004, 03:13 PM, said:

Alas for my party.  :(
Leave the Dark Side! :ninja:  Have to pick on you Lil. ;)  Haven't done it lately.

Edited by CJ AEGIS, 18 January 2004 - 04:44 PM.

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#9 Jid

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Posted 18 January 2004 - 04:44 PM

CJ AEGIS, on Jan 18 2004, 03:41 PM, said:

Una Salus Lillius, on Jan 18 2004, 03:13 PM, said:

Alas for my party.  :(
Leave the Dark Side! :ninja:
Join the slightly less dark side? ;)

This time, they're the lesser of two evils? ;)

Mmmm, equal opportunity picking on ;)

[edit] Also, is it too cynical of me to have read the title "Howard Dean Gets Religion" and immediately think "I wonder how much he paid?" ;)

Edited by Jid, 18 January 2004 - 04:46 PM.

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#10 G1223

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Posted 18 January 2004 - 04:45 PM

So my question is . Lil if this guy is so insincere why are you going to vote for him. I mean he is basically appearing to be willing to do anything,ANYTHING . to be eleced to office.  I mean Bush is in the Energy peoples pocket to extent. But he never played about going to Church or being Religious.

We need to watchdog the Congress. Becasue Bush cannot enact laws only enforce them.  Budgets get passed by congress. He/Ashcroft needs to be watchdogged just like Clinton/Reno needed to be.

#11 G1223

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Posted 18 January 2004 - 04:48 PM

Jid, on Jan 18 2004, 09:44 PM, said:

CJ AEGIS, on Jan 18 2004, 03:41 PM, said:

Una Salus Lillius, on Jan 18 2004, 03:13 PM, said:

Alas for my party.  :(
Leave the Dark Side! :ninja:
Join the slightly less dark side? ;)

This time, they're the lesser of two evils? ;)

Mmmm, equal opportunity picking on ;)
The only lesser thing about Dean is he is from a state that has less people than a few areas of New York City.


Oh btw the reason it's page two of the play book the first page is the title page. :)

#12 Bad Wolf

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Posted 18 January 2004 - 04:50 PM

G1223, on Jan 18 2004, 01:45 PM, said:

So my question is . Lil if this guy is so insincere why are you going to vote for him.
I won't vote for him in the primary.  But if he wins I'll certainly vote for him over a Republican.  At this level it comes down to the platforms for me, even if I'm less than thrilled with the candidate.
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#13 G1223

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Posted 18 January 2004 - 05:17 PM

Which Platform.


I disagree with the Republicains on the Pro Life Stance. But agree on Gun Control  The Economy The Tax Cuts  National Secuirty Rebuilding Iraq  The War on Terror.

What I disagree with Democratic platform as it stands is Bailing out of NAFTA(I just do not wish to 705 Billion to just get out of the treaty). Dropping the Tax Cuts (It been shown folks with extra money invest it  which stimulates the Economy) Trying to Appease Countries like France and Germany& Russia becasue they are upset that now they cannot get in on the money making of rebuilding Iraq.

They have talked about creating a Million manufacturing jobs? Making What?  Who will but our new whatevers if they can buy them Cheaper? We are going to remake the WPA which is more or less unskilled pick and shovel work which in 1932 was better than no work. We now have 6% unemploymentwhich is lower than in the last few years. We have lower interest rates than we had during JFK boom of 1960. And it's been long sustained.

Now Do I like the Stance the party has taken concerning pro Chice Yes but they have other issues that scare the crap out of me.  Which will leave us will I feel worse off than we have been since Jimmy Carter was President.

#14 Bad Wolf

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Posted 18 January 2004 - 05:47 PM

I agree with much more of the Democratic platform than the Republican platform and the parts of the Republican platform I most vehemently disagree with are deal breakers. It's not perfect and I'm unhappy that I have been put into a position of choosing the lesser of two evils but there it is.

Lil
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