Campaign Watch

Here’s the latest bit of wisdom from Sarah Palin:

McCain’s running mate, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, speaking in Colorado Springs, Colo., said Fannie and Freddie had “gotten too big and too expensive to the taxpayers.” The companies, however, aren’t taxpayer funded but operate as private companies. The takeover may result in a taxpayer bailout during reorganization.


It is appalling, of course, that Ms. Palin was unaware of a basic fact central to what is likely to be one of the major economic issues of the next few years. But this sort of gaffe is entirely typical among Republicans, who speak completely in talking points and code words. Fannie and Freddie have something to do with the economy, therefore a statement about wasting taxpayer money is in order. That’s all she knows about or cares about. It is reminiscent of her brilliant statement regarding the inclusion of “under God” in the Pledge:

Q: Are you offended by the phrase “Under God” in the Pledge of Allegiance? Why or why not?

PALIN: Not on your life. If it was good enough for the founding fathers, its good enough for me and I’ll fight in defense of our Pledge of Allegiance.

“Something about religion and patriotism?” she thought. “That means I’m supposed to say something about the Founding Fathers.”

She will get away with it because that is also the level at which much of the country thinks about political issues, and she will be backed up by a compliant media that is uninclined to bring it up. Some hapless, vaguely left-leaning pundit is likely to mention it on one of the chat shows this evening, but he will be shot down quickly by the host and the other guests.

Meanwhile, just in case you were uncertain as to the current state of the media, I urge you to read Glenn Greenwald’s latest column. MSNBC, you see, will not be allowing Chris Matthews and Keith Olbermann to continue as the lead anchors of their election coverage. Olbermann, who is the only one on the network to get non-embarrassing ratings, is too liberal, you see. The right-wing has complained, and MSNBC has caved:

Finally, and perhaps most notably of all, Olbermann’s role as anchor somehow destroys the journalistic brand of both MSNBC and NBC, while Fox News continues to be deemed a legitimate news outlet by our political and media establishment. Fox does this despite (more accurately: due to) its employing Brit Hume as its main anchor — someone who is every bit as partisan and ideological as Keith Olbermannn is (at least), who regularly spews the nastiest and most vicious right-wing talking points, yet because he’s not a liberal, is deemed to be a legitimate news anchor.

The Washington Post’s Howie Kurtz — while repeatedly lamenting the ascent of Olbermann (and Maddow) as a threat to objective journalism — proclaims that “Hume is no partisan brawler” while Charlie Gibson gushes: “He has a wonderful style which makes you want to hear what Brit has to say, in an age when so many people are in your face.” The Associated Press recently declared that Fox News has never gone as far as MSNBC in producing partisan news coverage, asserting that “Olbermann’s popularity and evolving image as an idealogue (sic) has led NBC News to stretch traditional notions of journalistic objectivity” and that “Fox has never done that, perhaps mindful of the immediate controversy that would result.”

Consult the original for links, and for many other quotable nuggets.

Put all of this together and you begin to see why all of the national polls now show McCain in the lead. During the summer, when the only people paying attention were the ones who, well, pay attention, Obama had a comfortable lead. But now that the Republicans have had their convention, and the media is falling into lockstep behind their version of reality, and the 527′s are mobilizing to rip into Obama, and Obama’s very real weaknesses are pointed out 24/7 through every media outlet, you are seeing the natural order of things beginning to be restored.

Finally, here is one more example of why Christopher Hitchens is reliable only when talking about religion, and should be ignored on every other issue. Actually, it seems he is not always reliable even on religion:

Interviewed by Rick Warren at the grotesque Saddleback megachurch a short while ago, Sen. Barack Obama announced that Jesus had died on the cross to redeem him personally. How he knew this he did not say. But it will make it exceedingly difficult for him, or his outriders and apologists, to ridicule Palin for her own ludicrous biblical literalist beliefs. She has inarticulately said that her gubernatorial work would be hampered “if the people of Alaska’s heart isn’t right with god.” Her local shout-and-holler tabernacle apparently believes that Jews can be converted to Jesus and homosexuals can be “cured.” I cannot wait to see Obama and Biden explain how this isn’t the case or how it’s much worse than, and quite different from, Obama’s own raving and ranting pastor in Chicago or Biden’s lifelong allegiance to the most anti-“choice” church on the planet. The difference, if there is one, is that Palin is probably sincere whereas the Democratic team is almost certainly hypocritical.

Even accepting Hitchens’ rather dubious characterizations of all the relevant people and organizations, I should think the difference is obvious. Obama and Biden have no interest in implementing the policies of the religious right. Palin does. (And McCain doesn’t really care one way or the other). Obama and Biden will protect the separation of church and state and a secular society. Palin won’t. Obama and Biden have no interest in having creationism taught in schools. Palin does. Obama and Biden recognize that their religious beliefs are personal, and are not a sound basis for public policy. Palin doesn’t.

This, mind you, was one of the better arguments Hitchens made in the entirety of his ridiculous column. This is Hitchens at his worst: desperate to be contrarian even when simple facts and logic are against him.

Comments

  1. #1 pough
    September 8, 2008

    If it was good enough for the founding fathers, its good enough for me and I’ll fight in defense of our Pledge of Allegiance.

    And what if it wasn’t good enough for the founding fathers? (And apparently it wasn’t.) What then?

  2. #2 darek
    September 8, 2008

    If it was good enough for the founding fathers, its good enough for me and I’ll fight in defense of our Pledge of Allegiance.

    I am reminded of the chorus sang in Inherit the Wind.

  3. #3 submix8c
    September 8, 2008

    Better at least check your “facts” on the “bailout”. This article/blog is making the same mistakes as the others; incomplete statements and erroneous timelines. Read here for correct and complete statements -

    http://www.recordpub.com/news/article/4357921

    As for evolution, WTF? So no discussion at all? Big Bang could have easily been Creation (how long was a “day”).

  4. #4 submix8c
    September 8, 2008

    Addendum – agree with Separaton of Church and State, but where the heck do you think the basis of our laws came from?

  5. #5 Blake Stacey
    September 8, 2008

    Big Bang could have easily been Creation (how long was a “day”).

    No, it couldn’t. Genesis 1 (which does not tell the same story as Genesis 2, but that’s a discussion for another day) describes the imposition of order on matter which already exists, not the production of matter, energy, space and time themselves ex nihilo. In addition, Genesis goes on to say that marijuana existed before sunlight. Any way you slice it, that’s a crappy allegory for anything resembling fact.

    Also, you’re conflating biology (evolution) with cosmology (the Big Bang).

    Addendum – agree with Separaton of Church and State, but where the heck do you think the basis of our laws came from?

    Locke and Montesquieu, perhaps?

    Law codes existed centuries before Christianity or even Judaism. The Sumerian king Urukagina, who ruled the city of Lagash in the 2300s BCE, was a social reformer who established an egalitarian tax code. His laws limited the power of the priesthood, safeguarded the poor against the wealthy and even instituted safeguards against what we would call “unreasonable search and seizure”.

  6. #6 NJ
    September 8, 2008

    Better at least check your “facts” on the “bailout”.

    Uh, what? The title of the article says bailout, and the text reads “Officials announced that both giant institutions were being placed in a government conservatorship, a move that could end up costing taxpayers billions of dollars.” So what part of Jason’s statement consisted of “facts”?

    As for evolution, WTF? So no discussion at all?

    Uh, archives, dude? It seems to escaped your “watchful eyes” that not all articles on any given blog are about the same topic.

    …where the heck do you think the basis of our laws came from?

    Could it be the Enlightenment? If you are in a mood to get have your arguments like this shoved in the equivalent of a wood chipper, try posting it over at Dispatches

    But, hey, thanks for bringing the stupid this evening. We were running short.

  7. #7 MarcusA
    September 8, 2008

    submix8c – agree with Separaton of Church and State, but where the heck do you think the basis of our laws came from?

    What do you think is the base of all cakes? Flour, of course. Flour is the universal starch. It must be from Moses.

    Most ancient societies had rules and laws, some of which happen to overlap with the ten commandments. Why? Because they were all made by humans, who share common societal problems.

    And if you don’t like the separation of church and state, then perhaps you won’t mind if we progressives pass a law making the teaching of evolution mandatory in church. The door swings both ways.

  8. #8 386sx
    September 8, 2008

    Addendum – agree with Separaton of Church and State, but where the heck do you think the basis of our laws came from?

    What kind of a “basis” is don’t worship other gods and no “coveting” of idols or whatever. I guess if you can find a couple things in there that resemble something, then it’s supposed to be a “basis”. Like “the” and “a”. “The” and “a” and “and” are in there, so it must be a basis!!

    No freedom of religion in there, but at least it’s a basis! Gotta start with something, you know!! Better than nothing!

  9. #9 Collin Brendemuehl
    September 8, 2008

    Jason,

    You’re becoming a water boy for Big O.
    It seems beneath your education and position.

    Collin

  10. #10 Paul Murray
    September 8, 2008

    I don’t understand the bailouts at all. Why on earth is anyone paying 25bn for a pair of companies worth negative 5 trillion?

  11. #11 wazza
    September 8, 2008

    And NO ONE is arguing about how AP, one of the two most powerful sources of news on the planet (with Reuters) is characterising NBC as more partisan than “terrorist fist jab” FOX “Barack Hussein Obama” News?

  12. #12 386sx
    September 8, 2008

    And NO ONE is arguing about how AP, one of the two most powerful sources of news on the planet (with Reuters) is characterising NBC as more partisan than “terrorist fist jab” FOX “Barack Hussein Obama” News?

    Thanks for reminding me of this AP story,

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/25576560/&GT1=43001

    That’s really good journalism there.

  13. #13 Justin
    September 8, 2008

    Hey just to let you know, you can say fox is bias, you can argue MSNBC is not, but sorry to burst your bubble both are in their own respects.

    The key difference is, Fox actually has liberal and conservative view points on their shows. They have the class that Keith does not. Mr. Olbermann tends to only have liberal guests, blasts conservatives, and calls people the worst person in the world.

    CNN and Fox do not let their anchors to blatantly attack a person or a show or a network on a daily basis.

    The truth is from two liberal anchors, both Anderson Cooper and Bill Maher have explicitly stated that they feel MSNBC is not just bias but purposely acting in a liberal agenda.

    Sorry to make you made, but when Mr. Maher is defending conservatives and calling out a network for being too liberal, something is wrong.

  14. #14 I am so wise
    September 8, 2008

    ” …where the heck do you think the basis of our laws came from?”

    Not from the Bible, otherwise I could have a 1,000 concubines and wives like King Solomon.

    Speaking of evolution, what impact on human development did Solomon’s 1,000 wives and concubines have on us?

  15. #15 george
    September 8, 2008

    I have just one question with all or your education how old were you when you found out you had your head up your ASS. You have been told this many times before but in your case it does not hurt to tell you one more time. It is better to keep your mouth shut and be though a fool and open it and remove all doubt. So for Gods sake shut up.

  16. #16 pough
    September 9, 2008

    I have just one question with all or your education how old were you when you found out you had your head up your ASS. You have been told this many times before but in your case it does not hurt to tell you one more time. It is better to keep your mouth shut and be though a fool and open it and remove all doubt. So for Gods sake shut up.

    Dude, killer satirical comment! If I close my eyes I can see the spittle flecks. Awesome. Starting things off with the run-on, nonsensical sentence is key. An all-caps somewhere is obligatory, as is a spelling mistake in the middle of words of wisdom. And then there is the killing stroke: telling someone on their blog to shut up. *bows*

  17. #17 natural cynic
    September 9, 2008

    paul murray: Why on earth is anyone paying 25bn for a pair of companies worth negative 5 trillion?

    The 5 trillion is [or was] the value of the mortgages guaranteed by Fannie & Freddie. Everything would be OK if real estate prices remained stable or were increasing. The problem is that the value of the mortgages has gone down in the past two years. The 250-500 billion bailout is the amount needed to balance the books.

    Pat Buchanan will probably be a regular on Rachel Maddow’s show. And Olbermann has had many conservatives on – it’s just that the conservatives he has are similarly critical of Republican malfeasance.

  18. #18 Turcano
    September 9, 2008

    I don’t understand the bailouts at all. Why on earth is anyone paying 25bn for a pair of companies worth negative 5 trillion?

    Mostly to keep the financial house of cards we call the modern economy from going from “mild-to-moderate downturn” to “total collapse.”

  19. #19 Jud
    September 9, 2008

    Jason wrote, regarding implementing the policies of the religious right: (And McCain doesn’t really care one way or the other).

    Ehmm, think you’re giving old “Christian nation” McCain too much credit. Back before he got a reputation as a “maverick,” he was pretty much a bedrock conservative. And as his pick of Palin showed, he knows exactly where he has to go to have a chance of getting elected, and thus exactly who he’ll need to be grateful to if he’s successful. I’d guess that gratitude will be showed through Supreme Court appointments, and there goes Roe.

  20. #20 Woody Tanaka
    September 9, 2008

    TO further Jud’s comment, that McCain doesn’t care is the biggest matter, because he will not apply any brake to the religious lunatics and fascists in the Rep. party. After their first win, they won’t be willing to settle for anything less than 100% implimentation of their anti-American program.

  21. #21 Coriolis
    September 9, 2008

    Wow Justin, MSNBC has no conservatives, but fox has liberals? Have you lost your goddamn mind? What is Pat Buchanan, if not a extreme conservative? I can barely agree with a word he’s saying, but the guy makes his arguments forcefully and makes his views heard (if not actually right). On the other hand, we have hannity&whatever. If you think that any of the “liberals”, on fox news have the guts and capability of pat buchanan, you’re out of your mind.

    Hell, I don’t even like Olbermann, but these blatant lies are pathetic. Although it’s emblematic of the republican strategy for the past 8 years – tell a lie so big, that the sane people don’t know whether to laugh or debunk it. Hopefully we’ve learned our lesson by now though.

  22. #22 KAS
    September 9, 2008

    Did anyone hear the speech in which Palin says that the war in Iraq was/is god’s plan?

    Just like a war hero is not qualified for presidency, neither is a pretty faced “hockey mom” with a disabled child. Stop talking *hit about the other candidates and start talking about issues, you self centered, dirty politicians!!

    In regards to the Fannie May and Freddie Mac issue, I am disgusted that this is legal! How can a private company that has spent millions in lobbying our government; get a government buyout??? (oh wait, I answered my own question)Now, as the result of their malicious, over extended, business practices of which they actively bribed the government for support of; has led to a crash. They should CRASH AND BURN and have to sell all their mortgages and investments on penny’s to the dollar to other institutions (private ones) This is absurd that the American people must now essentially pay for their mortgages twice as well as financially support unethical lobbying and pay off the debt of a PRIVATE business that went under!!

    Another thing; how come lobbying (i.e. bribing the government) isn’t ILLIGAL????

    The more I learn, the more I am flabbergasted, frustrated and ashamed.

    ~KAS

  23. #23 Colugo
    September 9, 2008

    “Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have gotten too big and too expensive to the taxpayers.”

    The notion that Palin thinks these are state-run entities would be a reasonable interpretation if she had made the remark BEFORE the bailout. But she said it AFTER an expensive taxpayer-funded bailout! (Does she want to break them up like Ma Bell? I don’t know.)

    What if anyone else had made that remark? How would it be interpreted? Would you think “Ha! The moron thinks these are public entities!” or would you think “You have a point.”? Without additional evidence, I’m going to go for the most parsimonious interpretation of what she meant. Namely, that she is referring to the bailout, not that she thinks these are public entities.

  24. #24 Colugo
    September 9, 2008

    Of course I meant before and after the bailout was announced, rather than implemented.

    (There is always a way to misinterpret someone’s remarks.)

  25. #25 Ian
    September 9, 2008

    I was pretty disappointed with Hitchens’s Palin column too. I came to the same conclusion: he’s not interested in an argument that seems too easy. It’s really unfortunate. “Yet our best trained, best educated, best equipped, best prepared troops refuse to fight…”

  26. #26 ctw
    September 9, 2008

    Whereas Jason read the quoted Hitchens paragraph as essentially “re religion, the two camps will act the same if elected”, I read it as “Obama’s salvation statement and Biden’s Catholicism can be used to blunt any attacks they intend to make based on Palin’s religious views”. If mine is the correct reading, one can still argue whether Hitchens is correct, but the assertion is not per se unreasonable.

    OTOH, the part about the Clintons – just bile due to his disdain for them – is quite irrelevant; correct me if I’m wrong, but neither of them is on any ticket.

    - Charles

  27. #27 Jon
    September 9, 2008

    This is Hitchens at his worst: desperate to be contrarian even when simple facts and logic are against him.

    It has something to do with his insane hatred of the Clintons, I think. Any perceived ally or benefactor of the Clintons is automatically malign (hence his complaining about the Clinton speeches at the DNC). The other part of it, of course, is the reactionary warmongering he got caught up in after 9/11. He’s still can’t seem to get over that.

  28. #28 bezoar
    September 9, 2008

    Ah, did anyone bother to tell Sarah Disingenuous Palin that “under god” came much, much later? Yep, I want her in the oval office awaiting god’s command to push the button. Yaweh help us all!!

  29. #29 Collin Brendemuehl
    September 9, 2008

    I am so wise:
    If you pick up some basic law books you’ll see the historic references to established codified laws of the past. In the case of the US, while the laws are not verbatim from the Bible, the ethic we enjoy clearly is. There is an ethical reason that we don’t cut off the hands of theives and you’ll find the principles in Leviticus.
    The US, while it has a religiously-neutral (secular) Constitution, society at large was evangelized by Wesley and the revivalists who followed during that next century-plus. The result was not religious perfection but a general religious persuasion that provided a great deal of our current social conscience. It’s why our secular revolution was not like the atheistic secular revolution of France that led to (1) a significant slaughter, (2) the closing of churches, and (3) the rise of a dictator. A similar situation occurred in Germany a century and a quarter later.

  30. #30 JimCH
    September 9, 2008

    It’s why our secular revolution was not like the atheistic secular revolution of France that led to (1) a significant slaughter, (2) the closing of churches, and (3) the rise of a dictator. A similar situation occurred in Germany a century and a quarter later.

    Wow, that’s a lot of American history white-washing. I realize that in the right’s eyes pointing out that our national hands aren’t clean equates to admitting to hating America. I guess now the move is to inform me that although, yes, mistakes have been made intentions were always pure.

  31. #31 michael fugate
    September 9, 2008

    Why don’t we stone adulterers? Why do let people wear cotton/polyester blends? Why do we let farmers plant more than one crop in the same field or plant a field every year? Why do we eat pork and rabbits?
    Just think – if we stoned adulterers, Newt Gingerich wouldn’t be able to defend the sanctity of marriage from the California Supreme Court ruling allowing marriage between 2 consenting adults.

  32. #32 BaldApe
    September 9, 2008

    bezoar said:

    Ah, did anyone bother to tell Sarah Disingenuous Palin that “under god” came much, much later? Yep, I want her in the oval office awaiting god’s command to push the button. Yaweh help us all!!

    Uh, the whole doggone pledge came much later (I assume you mean later than the Founding Fathers) It was written in the late 19th century, after the last of the Founding Fathers were quite dead.

    On Olbermann, I’m confused. I thought he was a conservative?

  33. #33 Robert O'Brien
    September 9, 2008

    Q: Are you offended by the phrase �Under God� in the Pledge of Allegiance? Why or why not?

    PALIN: Not on your life. If it was good enough for the founding fathers, its good enough for me and I’ll fight in defense of our Pledge of Allegiance.

    Sarah Palin’s reply does not necessarily suggest she believes the pledge goes back to the founders. It could simply mean that the idea of the nation being under God was articulated by them (which it was).

  34. #34 Johan Richter
    September 9, 2008

    They been borrowing money for quite some time know with a more or less explicit guarantee that the goverment will bail them out if problems arise and even longer with an implicit guarantee.*

    So on a charitable but not unreasonable interpretation she is in fact correct.

    *I’m refering in the first instance to an action by Congress earlier this year authorizing Bush to bail them out. The implicit guarantee has never been official, in fact the position has been to deny that there would be a bailout, but given their close connections to the goverment the market has always believed they would be bailed out. This is shown by the low interest rate they have been able to borrow to. Looks like it were correct.

  35. #35 Collin Brendemuehl
    September 10, 2008

    JimCH,
    I’m not talking about our expansion policies. I was talking about the character of the revolution. There is no whitewashing here. And neither is there a change of subject (from the revolution to the expansion) as you just did.
    Your idea that the right is unwilling to criticize America is just plain silly. We simply see a distinction between criticism intended to correct and criticism intended to belittle or diminish.

  36. #36 JimCH
    September 10, 2008

    “I was talking about the character of the revolution.”
    So was I.
    “We simply see a distinction between criticism intended to correct and criticism intended to belittle or diminish.”
    You may see that there is a distinction (so you say) but the right hasn’t demonstrated that they know what it is.
    “Silly”…I could site you dozens of daily examples that tells me it’s not. Brendemuehl, that is some tight hermetically sealed state you live in.

  37. #37 Collin Brendemuehl
    September 10, 2008

    JimCH,

    So you think the American Revolution was as bloody as the French Revolution? Where were the mass beheadings and other similar activities? War is ugly business but not all wars are the same, else WWI & WWII would not be considered “just” in any sense.

    The Right is no more monolithic than the Left.
    Stereotyping and over-generalizing, like branding people as racists when they are not (per SLC), is not a sound approach. Talk about hermetically sealed …

    Enjoy.

  38. #38 Kevin
    September 11, 2008

    Bobby O:

    “Sarah Palin’s reply does not necessarily suggest she believes the pledge goes back to the founders.”

    Right it could mean she thinks the pledge goes back to the Magna Carta. or last week..

    “It could simply mean that the idea of the nation being under God was articulated by them (which it was).”

    Which it wasn’t.

    In his, “A Defence of the Constitutions of Government of the United States of America” [1787-1788], John Adams wrote:

    “The United States of America have exhibited, perhaps, the first example of governments erected on the simple principles of nature; . . .. It will (can) never be pretended that any persons employed in that service had interviews with the gods, or were in any degree under the influence of Heaven, more than those at work upon ships or houses, or laboring in merchandise or agriculture; it will forever be acknowledged that these governments were contrived merely by the use of reason and the senses.

    “. . . Thirteen governments [of the original states] thus founded on the natural authority of the people alone, without a pretence of miracle or mystery, … are a great point gained in favor of the rights of mankind.”

    and your reply suggests that you believe the founders were mystics and shamans instead of reasoned enlightened men.

  39. #39 Klaus
    September 11, 2008

    What does Adams’ snippet mean in the light of a president, who claims that after waking up his first deed is to ask “What would Jesus do? (if he was me)” or something to that effect.
    Anyway, this whole matter on the presidency makes my heart sink. Although I do live in Europe, I hoped that the Republicans would get a beating in the elections, which they deserve. But by now it looks like it is getting tight.
    And to add a little original thought, maybe it was a clever preconceived move by McCain and Schmidt to get Palin into their team, despite her teenage daughter being pregnant. Because her views would definately appeal to much of the american populace, and maybe her daughter is a bonus instead of a malus, because I think to have read that banning sex education and promoting abstinence raises the amount of teenage pregnancies, so it must be a widespread problem among right wing christian fundamentalist families to have pregant teenage daughters. These families might feel with Sarah Palin.

    BTW, why isn’t it illegal to smear the name of a Python?

  40. #40 SLC
    September 12, 2008

    Re Collin Brendemuehl

    Stereotyping and over-generalizing, like branding people as racists when they are not (per SLC), is not a sound approach

    Is this Mr. Brendemuehls’ denial of the racism of Martin Luther? Inquiring minds want to know.

  41. #41 web design
    September 14, 2008

    McCain s running mate, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, speaking in Colorado Springs, Colo., said Fannie and Freddie had gotten too big and too expensive to the taxpayers. The companies, however, aren t taxpayer funded but operate as private companies. The takeover may result in a taxpayer bailout during reorganization.

    It is appalling, of course, that Ms. Palin was unaware of a basic fact central to what is likely to be one of the major economic issues of the next few years. But this sort of gaffe is entirely typical among Republicans, who speak completely in talking points and code words. Fannie and Freddie have something to do with the economy, therefore a statement about wasting taxpayer money is in order. That s all she knows about or cares about.

  42. #42 Robert O'Brien
    September 16, 2008

    Which it wasn’t.

    Refutation the first:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Jay#Religion

    Jay had been a warden of Trinity Church, New York since 1785; and, as Congress’s Secretary for Foreign Affairs, he supported the proposal after the revolution that the Archbishop of Canterbury approve the ordination of bishops for the Protestant Episcopal Church in America.[68] He also argued unsuccessfully in the provincial convention for a prohibition against Catholics holding office.[69]

    In a letter addressed to Pensylvania House of Representatives member John Murray ,dated October 12, 1816, Jay wrote, “Providence has given to our people the choice of their rulers, and it is the duty, as well as the privilege and interest, of our Christian nation to select and prefer Christians for their rulers.”[70]

  43. #43 Robert O'Brien
    September 18, 2008

    Refutation the second:

    Washington’s Prayer
    The draft of the circular letter is in the hand of a secretary, although the signature is Washington’s. Some have called this concluding paragraph “Washington’s Prayer.” In it, he asked God to: “dispose us all, to do Justice, to love mercy, and to demean ourselves with that Charity, humility and pacific temper of mind, which were the Characteristicks of the Divine Author of our blessed Religion, and without an humble imitation of whose example in these things, we can never hope to be a happy Nation.”

    Refutation the third:

    Adams’s Fast Day Proclamation
    John Adams continued the practice, begun in 1775 and adopted under the new federal government by Washington, of issuing fast and thanksgiving day proclamations. In this proclamation, issued at a time when the nation appeared to be on the brink of a war with France, Adams urged the citizens to “acknowledge before God the manifold sins and transgressions with which we are justly chargeable as individuals and as a nation; beseeching him at the same time, of His infinite grace, through the Redeemer of the World, freely to remit all our offences, and to incline us, by His Holy Spirit, to that sincere repentance and reformation which may afford us reason to hope for his inestimable favor and heavenly benediction.”

    http://www.loc.gov/exhibits/religion/rel06.html

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