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jesus was whatever the speechwriter needs him to be

Ramsey Clark's sanity has left the building.

Former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark Wednesday compared Jesus Christ to a terrorist during a media event for a new anti-war group. "The Christian Church overwhelmingly -- there are exceptions -- who choose to call Mohammed a terrorist. They could call Jesus a terrorist too," said Clark. "I mean, he was pretty tough on money lenders a time or two."

I'm an atheist and I'm offended by that. Being "tough on money lenders" is what constitutes being a terrorist these days? What happened to the suicide belts and bombs and death threats?

It's obvious Mr. Clark isn't the only one contemplating the issue of what exactly Jesus stood for.

For instance, this person believes that Jesus was, just like Che Guevara, a communist.

Then there's Brian Sewell, he thought Christ would have approved of the destruction of the twin towers.

"America is, as we all know, a synecdochism for all the virtues of Western civilisation. But - and dare one express a but in such a hysterical context? - some might see the events of that day in New York as an assault on the twin monuments of Mammon by an ascetic religious force emanating, yet again, from the deserts of the East to scourge the daily manipulators of greed, rapaciousness and avarice, the disciples of profit and cupidity, the instruments of personal and private wealth for its own sake. Have we forgotten the moral exemplar set by Christ when he scourged the traders in the temple of Jerusalem? When he overturned the tables of the moneychangers, did he pause to ask why any of them should be excluded from his wrath?"

Andrea answered that phrase with the succint:

Hm. I haven't one of those annotated all-the-quotes Bibles in my possession, merely an edition of the usual KJV, but I am pretty sure that Jesus didn't slaughter the moneylenders. (Cato also took aim and fired at Mr. Sewell.)

Of course, Mr. Sewell, the Che person and Ramsey Clark all most likely got that particular view of Jesus from Jesus Christ, Superstar.

Moneylenders:
Roll on up -- for my price is down
Come on in -- for the best in town
Take your pick of the finest wine
Lay your bets on this bird of mine

Name your price I got everything
Come and buy it's all going fast
Borrow cash on the finest terms
Hurry now while stocks still last

Jesus:
My temple should be a house of prayer
But you have made it a den of thieves
Get up, get out

(You really should hear that, not just read it. I can sing the entire soundtrack from heart, but I'll spare you.)

So, Jesus wasn't that happy with capitalism, right? Does that make him a communist, though?

Fidel seems to think so. But that's Fidel for you.

Perhaps he was an anarchist. A vegan. A goth. And, according to the Guardian, Jesus was a pothead.

I think Jesus may have liked Berkely.

Anyhow, to finish up with Ramsey Clark, which is where I started, the thoughtless wonder had this to say in the same speech:

"The greatest moral force there by far is Islam because it is present in the prisons," said Clark. "They're the ones that are respected, they're the ones that are up at up at 5 a.m. and worshiping, they're the ones that are praying five times a day and not ashamed to submit themselves to what they believe is a greater power."

Moral. Prisons. Something in that statement does not make sense. Of course, it stands to reason that Clark was espousing the virtues of religious people in prison. You know - prison? That place you go when you've done something bad? Well, Clark was in D.C. giving that speech to lend his support to A.N.S.W.E.R., the anti-war group. They're having a big protest on January 18 and they would like you to come dressed as weapons inspectors.

I heard that people were going to march naked during that protest. Anyone thinking of heading down there that day, you should find out exactly what they mean by "weapons inspectors" before you commit myself.

Comments

We need photos!!! I want to see naked peaceniks chillin' in the city.

btw... The weather service predicts that the next two weeks will be the coldest two week period in the past five years.

Hard nipples, blue boobs, frozen fish and dicks that have turned into dimples. Woo-hoo!!

Suffice to say I'm not Christian, but I was raised as one, and I take issue with the total lack of biblical scholarship exhibited by some of the people you quoted. Jesus did not express contempt for capitalism. He expressed contempt for profaning the temple with worldly things. I don't think he ever took a stand on capitalism--I mean, he forgave Judas for selling him out for 30 pieces of silver, after all.

I'm not religious either, but Steve got it right as I recall the story: loan sharks took over the temple.

I'm a Christian, and I'm use to knuckleheads like Clark who'll hype-up anything out of context to make their point. The only thing that surprises me is that the statement wasn't made by lunatics in our (my) own ranks!

I agree Michele when she asks what constitutes being a terrorist these days?. I think there is a huge difference between chasing a few crooked loan-sharks out of a place of worship, as opposed to walking into a place of worship on Christmas eve and tossing in hand-grenades and spraying the congregation with bullets.

But if we admit that, then the next thing you know, they'd have to stop pullling 70 year old women out of the lines at airports to make sure they're not terrorists.

The next time Ramsey Clark says anything of value, will be the first.

Ditto Jimmy Carter.

Ditto Al Sharpton.

Ditto [insert YOUR favorite liberal asshole here].

I don't waste my time reading anything these dickheads have to say.

I think Ramsey Clark's sanity left for a permanent vacation to the Florida Keys sometime in the mid 1970's. This article though from a far-left source is actually one of the better guides I've seen as to his many insanities. If a genocide was commited in the last 30 years, you can bet Ramsey Clark was there to defend the perpetrators.

Terrorist?

According to the Bible, when the police came to unjustly arrest him, Jesus not only stopped his followers from fighting, he healed one of the police who had been injured by his followers.

Look at that again. When the police came to drag him to his death, Jesus healed one of them instead of fighting them.

How often do commanders of the militants of the Inifada rush medical aid to Israeli troops when the Israelis come to kill them?

Then again, any of us who don't agree with Jesus' take on things will be forced to burn as punishment (according to him). Hey, kind of like a terrorist - except the terrorists' threat is obvious and real.

"Moral. Prisons. Something in that statement does not make sense. "

Doesn't it though? We're all immoral in one way or another - we all lie to cover our asses, we all have impure thoughts (immoral to God!), we all feel jealousy and greed, etc. Prison is just for those whose moral violations actually hurt others in readily identifiable ways

And I think Clark has a point about the power of Islam in prisons -it offers a ready path to both discipline and salvation. We may not like that path, but that in no way negates what it offers as a temptation for those who realize the error of their ways.

I think for atheists like us to discount its influence is an exercise in sheer folly.

"The greatest moral force there by far is Islam because it is present in the prisons," said Clark. "They're the ones that are respected, they're the ones that are up at up at 5 a.m. and worshiping, they're the ones that are praying five times a day and not ashamed to submit themselves to what they believe is a greater power."

Clark seems to worship (pun intended) those who place a higher power ahead of their own interests. I think this is a thinly-veiled attempt to promote more of the "government knows what's best for you" style of politics...because obviously self-interest is something to be at least wary of and those who restain themselves (especially when there are Greater Good reasons to do so) deserve praise, regardless of the things they've done.

"Well, sure. The guy murdered members of three families and seriously injured members of another ten more. But does he ever give to charity! He openly declared he wanted all his Iraqi-funded "militant" money to go not to his starving family...but to other starving families. Whatta guy, eh? He even offered to be the one to run into the crowded market with the automatic rifle! How much more noble can you get?"

pulls hair out

Theological issues with andy aside ;-)

It bears remembering that Jesus (the Jew) was clearing the temple of (Jewish) money lenders.
If only the Islamists would do the same.

I read this post and just got all pissy and annoyed. Mr. Clark seems to have gotten his head stuck somewhere dark... and slimy. If he were paying attention to what Jesus actually did and said as opposed to forcing Jesus' actions into a mold that works for him, maybe he'd actually arrive at an intelligent point. But apparently that's asking too much.

Ack! Now you've got me all worked up and annoyed.

Hey, Michele, the movie version of those lyrics are better. It includes your part, plus:

I got things you won't believe
Name your pleasure I will sell
I can fix your wildest needs
I got Heaven, I got Hell

Roll on up for the price is down
Come on in for the best in town
Take your pick of the finest wine
Lay your bets on this bird of mine

What you see is what you get
Name your price give me a try
No one's been disappointed yet
There ain't nothing you can't buy

MUCH darker than the Broadway version!

why not go back to the root question: do you think muhammad was a terrorist?

Muhammed was a terrorist only if you apply the modern viewpoint back to his age. Back then, everybody targetted civilians (which is patrt of the modern definition)... even, and some would argue especially, the Romans.

I would classify him more as a guerillia fighter that eventually became a general and spiritual leader.

Doesn't it though? We're all immoral in one way or another - we all lie to cover our asses, we all have impure thoughts (immoral to God!), we all feel jealousy and greed, etc. Prison is just for those whose moral violations actually hurt others in readily identifiable ways.

Uh huh. Been drinking too much of the "Moral Equivlance" kool-aid, have we?

A guy who lies to cover his ass is EXACTLY the same as one who rapes and murders a 9-year-old. Its just that the rapist can be readily identified. Riiiight.

Mr. Sewell needs to be told that the real word is synecdoche* not synecdochism. Sheesh.

*A figure of speech in which a part is used for the whole (as hand for sailor), the whole for a part (as the law for police officer), the specific for the general (as cutthroat for assassin), the general for the specific (as thief for pickpocket), or the material for the thing made from it (as steel for sword).

The moneychangers in the bible had nothing to do with capitalism, folks. Try remembering what they were there to do: the moneychangers changed "impure" temporal money for "pure" money that could be used in the temple to purchase the doves for the requisite ceremonies. This was a great source of money for the priests, and as such was abasement of the religous nature of the temple. Jesus' act was more a statement on the mixing of business with worship (which should scare one or two of those less ethical televangelists).

Remember that Jesus didn't have anything against making money, he just thought that you should give it away to the poor and needy when you have it.

While Out Lord was not a "pacifist" in the modern sense (He endorsed armed self-defense and associated with Roman soldiers), He was truly peaceful. One of the basic themes of the the Gospel story is that He rejected armed revolution and so was in opposition to the alQaeda-like Jewish terrorists of the time, such as the Sicarii, whose slaughter of the Roman prisoners at Masada brought Roman wrath down on their country.