Do we really want a Christian nationalist who truly believes that the Rapture is imminent determining our policy in the Middle East?
Thank you, Greg, for this detailed background but I confess I speed scrolled through most of it because it is too terrifying to contemplate. Not the history, but the fact that modern humans could be so irrational. And I keep making the point of America being founded on the separation of Church and State. Your clarification of the Evangelical interest in Israel should be broadcast as widely as possible. The assistance you credit from Skeptical Texan gives me hope that sanity will prevail.
Great breakdown of the danger a man like Mike Johnson represents not only to the United States but also to the world. Hard to believe people believe such kooky stuff, and that they have achieved positions of power.
This column reminds me of a comment I read years ago on a Washington Post review of the movie The Book of Eli. The premise of the movie is that Eli possessed the last copy of the Bible after nuclear war. He fights to bring it someplace to preserve it (I don’t know the details as I never saw the movie). A comment on the story quipped, if he loved the world he would have burned it. How often I’ve thought of that anonymous reviewer’s wisdom as we’ve fallen prey to religious zealots
OMG Greg. I love the diversity of your work. This was powerful. Yea separation of church and state!
"Not only is it a fairy tale, it’s a remake of a fairy tale, with much of its original meaning lost."
Thank you for that.
He is scary because his cherry picked beliefs are so rigid.
I've always maintained that there is nothing in this world scarier than a True Believer. In whatever.
Fantastic read, thank you Greg! As a teenager a friend asked me to come with him to another town and “witness” to people on the street. We handed out little booklets that described an eternity in the fires of Hell for the non-believers. Most told us to take a hike, some were ready to listen to more. But mostly it scared the hell out of me, for years.
In the end I believe sanity will prevail, but not without a huge effort.
🎯 Excellent commentary for Halloween 🎃, Greg ☕️☕️ ➕ 🍸 🥃, and so on.
Thank you, Greg, for these superb historical details, which I read through slowly once -- and will re-read again. When I did my own research on Johnson the day he won the nomination (before the actual vote), my take was that he had the votes to claim the gavel -- and he did. I would agree with Johnson that his rise to prominence is no coincidence, but not for the reason he believes. It's clear that his mindset and communication are in a powerfully persuasively period of expression. He projects an aura of material self-sufficiency, appearing to not need input from anyone else, acting as a law unto himself.
While he may see himself as an innovative thinker, loyal to the needs of the collective, what drives him to do anything is likely a purely personal need for honor, recognition and love. I can see how he would be hell-bent on preserving a certain status quo, to keep things the Way Things Ought to Be. But his vision is likely blurred, and even more so in 2024, as dogmatic beliefs dissolve into fantasy and a potentially reckless crusade. The only upside I see is that conventional wisdom argues that enterprises built on inflated delusions usually fail.
Meanwhile, I can see how this period of development is likely to feel like the end of the world for the rest of us mere mortals, especially starting next spring. It will be even more challenging to find accurate accounts, as channels of information continue to be fractured (thx, Elon) and blurred (thx to AI, deep fakes, troll farms, etc.). This makes me appreciate the information you provide in this forum all the more.
(by Greg Olear, article) he has a vested interest in there being a gigantic war in the Middle East where Russia and the Arab States invade Israel. He wants that more than anything. The Rapture is so close, he can taste it.
Great post. Growing up Catholic and going to Catholic school, being an altar boy, and the whole bit, we skipped over the Revelation crap in school, so I don't know a lot about it. (Luckily, I excommunicated myself when I was 16 or 17. I couldn't take any more of the hypocrisy).
The stronger the faith, the closer the devil 😇 #TaxTheChurches
Revelation is the all-time ultimate conspiracy theory. Perfect for authoritarians to weaponize.
another piece to that 'they can taste it'
Something about the European Union
and then 1 original member leaving(Great Britain?),
the stars and number of stars increasing then decreasing by a specific number, it continues, Yada Yada
Sarah Palin 'explained much of it'.
This might be one of your best pieces ever written. My God what damage has been done by Citizens United. I just recommended this to David Kurtz at Talking Points Memo as follow up to his posting Bulwark piece on Mike Johnson.