The Bible Brigade and the rising clout of the authoritarian religious right

The Bible Brigade – Social Conservatives, known as So-Cons or Theo-Cons – have since Stephen Harper organized to help elect authoritarian politicians who share their worldview. In the U.S., they are often known as Christofascists (a significant number are Evangelicals). They are Conservative/Republican authoritarians who are anti-science, anti-experts, anti-public-education, anti-environment-regulation, and they are terrified of progressive societal change. The right-wing bible brigade, over the last few decades, has forced the Overton Window to the extreme right through their militant tactics & Christian fundamentalism.

The Bible Brigade needs to be exposed as the danger they are to Democracy. A historical trip down memory lane is essential to illustrate the danger they present to Progressive Democratic countries like Canada because “This isn’t the religious right we thought we knew. The Christian nationalist movement today is authoritarian, paranoid and patriarchal at its core. They aren’t fighting a culture war. They’re making a direct attack on democracy itself.” NYT

The Long Con And The Overton Window

EXCERPTS: “… the Reform Party only marginally pushed the Overton window right, but it had started. Stephen Harper and the merged Conservative Party of Canada moved it a little further right, especially when paired with a hawkish center-right Liberal leader like Michael Ignatieff. It wasn’t until Harper was contrasted with a more left leaning Justin Trudeau did it show Stephen Harper’s exposure to being outside the Overton window.

We need the return of big ideas, new initiatives, and mass protest from the left/centre-left to move the Overton window back to balance. If government, political parties, and media are failing us or refusing to see the long con game being played by Conservatives – it becomes incumbent upon us to demand those big ideas and initiatives that once was commonplace in Canada to retain the balance that creates good national policy, and not cater to special interests and niche political movements.”

Group looks to help anti-abortion advocates get jobs working for new MPs

EXCERPTS: “RightNow has produced “a guide to advancing the pro-life movement as a political staffer”….

“While it is absolutely imperative that we have solid pro-life staffers assisting our pro-life parliamentarians and ministers, it is equally important to have good people staffing non-pro-life parliamentarians and ministers. This ensures that there are good influences around them and prevents them from being surrounded solely by pro-abortion influences.””

Stephen Harper and the Theo-cons. The rising clout of Canada’s religious right

EXCERPTS: “What does it mean if and when a believer in the infallibility of Biblical prophecy comes to power and backs a damn-the-torpedoes course in the Middle East? Does it end up fuelling overenthusiastic end-timers who feel they have nothing to lose in some future conflagration, helping speed the world on Hagee’s fast track to Armageddon?

Harper’s agenda turns out to be hidden only to those who don’t know where to look.”

Series from the Armageddon Factor

British Columbia, Test Bed for Harper’s Religious Base

How BC became ground zero in the Christian conservative battle to shift Canada’s culture.

EXCERPTS: ” While the outcry over the Corren agreement has become one of the most polarizing skirmishes in the Canadian culture wars, it is only the latest standoff in a half-century struggle to determine which values are taught in the public-school system and who has the final say over what a child learns: parents or the government. Ever since any mention of creationism was banned from biology lessons in the name of science and prayers were pulled out of schools in the name of interfaith harmony, many conservative Christians have come to view state-run education systems with mistrust and outright hostility. As they see it, liberals and secular humanists have conspired with the courts to wipe out all symbols of Christianity from the classroom and impose an alien agenda on their offspring.”

When Christ Returns, What Will Things Look Like?

That’s a history class question in one of Canada’s fast growing Bible-based schools. Here, there’s only one definition of ‘family.’

Raising the ‘Joshua Generation’

Some of the most ardent homeschooling advocates don’t just want to shape their kids. They want to reshape Canada.

NOTE: The Joshua Generation started in the U.S. See “I Was Trained for the Culture Wars in Home School

Trinity Western University’s Long Reach to Ottawa

How a BC Christian junior college grew to be a key provider to Stephen Harper’s power structure.

“Evangelicals are mobilizing in Ottawa to put their stamp on public policy and opinion.”

Inside the Christian Right’s Ottawa Finishing School

How the Laurentian Leadership Centre prepares the Joshua generation to take the reins of government. [Janet Epp Buckingham is the centre’s executive director.]

EXCERPT from The Armageddon Factor: The “…National Post had run a flattering, full-page profile of the Laurentian Leadership Centre, celebrating it as a new haven for the “sharpest edge of intellectual evangelical Christianity,” but on the day I visit there is little evidence of that acuity.

If this is history filtered through a biblical worldview, it is a version that seems hopelessly skewed by conservative bias and a marked disregard for the facts. When students refer to the Toronto Star as “the Red Star” and deride Canada as a “welfare state,” I feel as if I’ve stumbled into the ornate clubhouse of some fresh-faced relics from the Reagan era.

That impression only deepens after a mid-morning break when Buckingham steers the discussion to the Charter of Rights, her own legal specialty. As the former chief counsel of the Evangelical Fellowship, she had been one of the leading advocates for the Christian right and, during the incendiary same-sex marriage debate, she won a reputation as a reasonable and nuanced voice. Today, however, Buckingham makes little attempt to temper the arguments of her students who, almost without exception, slam the Charter as “bad” or “frightening” and a threat to evangelical Christians. Decrying the fact that the courts “have gone too far on social issues,” she notes that religion in Canada has been “privatized,” as she puts it, which turns out to mean that it has been banished from the public sphere.

Sitting in on the discussion, it seems no wonder that critics see the centre as an elite finishing school for Harper’s Conservatives. Every class has been invited to a photo session with the prime minister, and his office has hosted at least one intern each semester. Despite the centre’s repeated insistence that it is non-partisan, a seven-year review of its internships shows that, of the fifty-one MPs who employed students, 42 were Conservatives — most of them evangelicals. It’s a critique for which the students themselves are well prepared.

Before he was prime minister, Harper railed against the liberalism of the civil service, and Trinity Western is not alone in attempting to help him reverse that tilt. More than a dozen well-regarded Christian colleges and universities now exist in this country, and the Conservatives are quietly fostering their growth. When economic stimulus funds were being doled out, Harper funneled more than $26 million their way, including $2.6 million to Trinity Western — a windfall that was announced by Conservative MP Mark Warawa, a TWU alumnus himself.”

The Harper government and evangelical capitalism

EXCERPTS: “A 2007 article in the Vancouver Sun (August 18, 2007) noted that Harper’s cancellation of a proposed national daycare program coincided with the beliefs of Evangelical Christians, who “don’t want the state meddling in the sacred duty of raising children.” The piece also informed readers that Harper’s (and Preston Manning’s) Christian and Missionary Alliance Church “has about 2.5 million members and 14,000 congregations worldwide. One fifth of its members live in North America, with Alberta a Canadian hotbed.”

The article noted: “Aware that many Canadians are suspicious of Evangelicals, [Preston] Manning last year [2006] organized a series of conferences to urge conservative Christian leaders to tone down their Biblical ‘peel-the-paint-off-the-walls’ rhetoric.””

From ‘Bible Bill’ to Stephen Harper, the evolution of faith-based politics

“Under Manning, Reform was generally able to put its Christian roots on the back-burner.

But that was no longer possible when Reform morphed into the Canadian Alliance Party in 2000 and chose Stockwell Day as its leader. Day refused to campaign on Sundays and once gave a speech that seemed to indicate he supported the biblical notion that humans and dinosaurs co-existed on Earth 6,000 years ago.

Evangelicals were wildly enthusiastic about Stockwell Day as the leader of a national political party, but many Canadians were wary about his perceived fundamentalism, and he was unable to expand the Alliance base outside of Western Canada.

By 2002, the party had turned against him and Day was replaced by Stephen Harper.

Social values

Harper, who joined the evangelical Christian and Missionary Alliance Church in the 1980s, had long believed that courting the religious right by emphasizing social issues was bad politics for a party trying to form a national government.”

Harper gets good news about Israel out to key part of his coalition: evangelicals

EXCERPT: “Since they are more likely to vote than other Canadians, and more likely to volunteer and donate money to causes they hold dear, their political importance is greater than their raw numbers would suggest.”

A CULTURE OF DEFIANCE: History of the Reform-Conservative Party of Canada

“Nothing has done the electoral and moral credibility of liberalism more harm than the failure to take this attack seriously” – Michael Ignatieff, University of Toronto, 1998

Jason Kenney and the Christian Coalition:

“The Religious Right are about more than just ending abortion and gay rights. It’s a complete overhaul. We need to start paying attention, since clearly our media is not.”

The Canadian Manifesto: Introduction

The Canadian Manifesto: How the American Neoconservatives Stole My Country

The Christian Coalition and Jason Kenney Help to Create So-Cons on Steroids

EXCERPTS: “Less than 11% of Canadians are evangelical, and of that probably less than half are of the extreme variety. Yet they now make up more than half of the Harper caucus. But what’s worse, they have also been infiltrated into all levels of the public sphere, and are now in the courts, the senate and even the civil service.

If this government is in power much longer, the majority of Canadians risk losing their voice, and all decisions made will be contrary to Canadian beliefs and Canadian values.**”

True Blue

Jason Kenney wants Stephen Harper’s job. But is he too extreme for the Tories?

Ford’s closeness with controversial evangelical pastor is problematic

By Michael Coren. Published on Dec 4, 2018 5:28pm

EXCERPT: “‘Charles McVety is no ordinary or mainstream Christian. He has been at the centre of many of the most unpleasant campaigns in Canada against LGBTQ equality and modern sex education, and is considered on the right-wing fringe, even within the evangelical church.'”

Jason Kenney says Carpay membership decision lies with UCP board, not with him

UCP leader says Calgary lawyer who compared Pride flag to swastika has apologized for remarks

The common theme connecting So-Cons with politicians like Kenney, Scheer, Ford, & Stephen Harper is Ezra Levant from Rebel Media.

An earlier Twitter thread on the Bible Brigade: Dominion theology wants government by Christians. Dominionists will vote to elect Conservatives. Follow the sub-thread by André Gagné who researches the Christian right. We underestimate them at our peril.

For Chrissy Stroop’s thread unrolled:
https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1080135922488918016.html

The Radical Christian Right and the War on Government

EXCERPTS: “It fuses with the Christian religion the iconography and language of American imperialism and nationalism, along with the cruelest aspects of corporate capitalism. The intellectual and moral hollowness of the ideology, its flagrant distortion and misuse of the Bible, the contradictions that abound within it — its leaders champion small government… — and its laughable pseudo-science are impervious to reason and fact. And that is why the movement is dangerous.”

5 Key Moments From the Year of the ‘Exvangelicals’

EXCERPTS: “We’ve used our increased visibility, often through hashtag campaigns, to expose evangelical authoritarianism to the broader American public, something that major media outlets have mostly failed to do.

Because the exvangelical community consists of those who repudiate evangelicalism for its pervasive authoritarianism, we also tend to affirm that which most white evangelicals—a literally uniquely conservative, uniquely pro-Trump, and nativist demographic—stand against.”

I Was Trained for the Culture Wars in Home School, Awaiting Someone Like Mike Pence as a Messiah

Important to note that these Christofascists have been infiltrating Government for decades.

EXCERPTS: “Those of us who didn’t leave the far Right are being elected to federal positions or are taking over states and cities. With Pence in office, even the reasonable-seeming incumbents – who have been and are still at the mercy of the Tea Party – are growing more bold in their attempts to further the Christofascist agenda: To Take Back The Country For Christ.

This was the mantra we heard. This was our mission. This is how we were to win: Outbreed, Outvote, Outactivate.

A single powerful person who is convinced of their own Rightness with no thought of introspection is dangerous. We now have a government full of them.

This religion is based entirely on fear; you can’t argue away a fear so intense that it hardens you to anyone unlike you or your tribe.

They will not be won over with sit-downs and respectability politics. This kind of dogma cannot be reasoned with; it must be fought against. Trying to convince them to come to the other side is a waste of time unless they’ve already started on that journey themselves. The ones in power, actively harming our lives, are past this point. We can only fight back.

The revolution has come and we are the resistance.”

Taking Over the Republican Party

“The Grand Old Party is more religious cult than political organization.”
President of the Alamo City Republican Women’s club, 1993
http://theocracywatch.org/taking_over.htm

This huckster is now President Trump’s advisor. Shes even considered a charlatan by other Evangelicals

https://video.twimg.com/amplify_video/1191486017049632770/vid/720×720/5ur9Pqx8FhA76NOF.mp4?tag=13