Sounds like a Canadian.
Catching up on some old letters.
Steve Head writes from British Columbia:
I am just a lowly Canadian, but, I can tell you that we are fed up with American B.S. about the great Bush government. I have not experienced a worse case of “Little Man” syndrome. You people at the Voice are amongst the few who send a strong response to the daily verbiage from the GREAT LAND OF THE FEW. Why can’t you figure out that the only thing more dangerous than a Texan is a little Texan who is an narrow-minded, hypocritical Baptist?!
Thanks for writing, Steve. No doubt Bush, like many pols, suffers from some form of “Little Man” syndrome. Wilhelm Reich had something to say about that (kind of) in his ’40s book Listen, Little Man! This slim, angry volume written in the second person — yeah, that means you! — and full of rants about the “emotional plague” is just like having the late Reich scolding you. Here’s one of the book’s few passages that might apply to the doofus POTUS:
I recognized the deadly fear of the living in you, a fear which always makes you set out correctly and end wrongly. You had the happiness of humanity in your hands, and you have gambled it away. You had the world in your hands, and at the end you dropped your atom bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Through the centuries, you will shed blood where life should be protected, and will believe that you achieve freedom with the help of the hangman; thus you will find yourself again and again in the same morass.
Actually, Steve, there are people more dangerous than this little Texan to whom you’re referring: the little Texan’s handlers. (See the next letter.)
G.M. Wetzel writes:
Although he professes to be a Protestant, Bush is behaving just like a cafeteria Catholic. That is not a bad thing. In fact, most thinking Catholics are so. But Bush is rather unique in being able to slide in the back door to garner the Catholic vote and then slip back to the Baptists when he needs their vote!! Not bad.
Thanks for writing, G.M., but I’m not sure that you have to “teach” a puppet anything. You just have to pull the strings.
Marina Mecl writes from Munich:
In your April 20 article “Crust Almighty!” you wrote:
“For now, what’s fascinating are the new alliances between right-wing Catholics and right-wing Protestants.”
Please elaborate on their alliance with right-wing Jews. This tri-alliance is truly something to be deeply worried about.
Thanks for writing, Marina. A fascinating, complex, scary question indeed. Sad to say, the American Jewish establishment is increasingly in the hands of right-wingers. There’s an active peace movement among Jews in Israel, but you’d never know it by reading the U.S. press. And in fact, most American Jews apparently don’t buy into the blind support given to Ariel Sharon by the big organizations like the powerful AIPAC and ADL. Jewish Voice for Peace, a Left Coast org, pointed that out in April, citing a poll conducted for Ameinu, an American Zionist organization that boasts of “liberal values”:
47% of those surveyed want the US to push Israel to be more conciliatory, while only 20% oppose this. 40% believe the US should be more even-handed than it is.
This is precisely what JVP calls for. We do not call for blind support of one side or the other. We want the US to adopt a policy that pushes both sides into the compromises necessary for peace. It is simply a lie that we represent the views of a small or fringe minority. As the polls reported on in the Ameinu survey below, and another poll released … by the ADL, indicate, we represent as significant a Jewish voice, and as true a Jewish voice, as the myopically pro-Israel groups like the Conference of Presidents, the AJC and the World Zionist Organization. In the case of the latter, the polls demonstrate quite clearly that JVP is in line with mainstream Jewish thought, while the WZO is massively out of step with it.
That’s all just background for the weirdness of evangelical Christians’ support for Israel — which is predicated on the belief by the evangelicals that after Israel is made to thrive, Jesus will finally come, 144,000 Jews will accept him as the true savior, the rest will be burned to death, and there’ll be some sort of heavenly kingdom. Desperate for allies, a lot of Jews have embraced the support of evangelicals — despite that crackpot scenario.
Not that the wacky Christians are hiding their intentions. This is from the group Christian Friends of Israeli Communities, a fanatical pro-settlements group:
Sondra Baras, the CFOIC representative in Israel, … reports that another two churches are planning to adopt settlements. “There is not a Christian in the world who does not believe that ultimately the Jews will accept Jesus,” she says. “The dispute among them is whether it is necessary to work with the Jews through missionary activities, or to accept that everything is in the hands of God. Our Christians do not believe in the theory of replacement theology [replacing the Jewish religion with the Christian religion], and therefore we can work with them.”
Meanwhile, zealous American Jews, like the odious neocon Doug Feith, have deep connections to the West Bank settlements. Feith’s former law partner, Marc Zell, lives in the settlements and is head of the Israeli chapter of Republicans Abroad, which worked hard for the re-election of George W. Bush.
That’s only a taste of the connections between the Christian and Jewish religious-right wings. I guess that, until the Rapture, we’ll have to put up with that unholy alliance.