Well, You Gotta Think About It.

Lughnasa                                           Waning Artemis Moon

Went to office max and had the smaller artemis honey labels printed up.  Now it’s time for a workout then the vikes at 7:00.

As to demagoguery in our time.  Glenn Beck and his band of merry men and women, almost all white, want to return the country to the God drenched republic it was in the golden days of the American revolution.  Let’s aside for the moment that the bulk of the revolutionary leadership, among them Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Benjamin Franklin and many others were not Christian, but deists who believed in a watchmaker god, one who set the universe in motion then stood back to watch how things turned out.  Let’s set aside for the moment the fact that Beck show the same date and place as Martin Luther King chose for his rally 47 years ago.

Instead, let’s look at an ancient Greek idea, one that preceded Christianity and Deism, MLK and Glenn Beck, hubris.  Hubris means extreme haughtiness or arrogance. Hubris often indicates being out of touch with reality and overestimating one’s own competence or capabilities, especially for people in positions of power…The word was also used to describe actions of those who challenged the gods or their laws, especially in Greek tragedy, resulting in the protagonist’s downfall.  When a person, or persons, claims to have the mantle of the Almighty around their shoulders and intimates they know what this God wants, then the word hubris applies since that person has pitted their knowledge of God’s will against God.

Demagogues, political leaders who seek support by appealing to popular desires and prejudices rather than by using rational argument, will, as Jesus once said of the poor, always be with us.  A democracy can fall prey to them, witness George Wallace, Huey Long, Nathan Bedford Forrest, David Duke, but the self correcting political process can and usually does reject them sooner or later. Beck’s brand of conservative populism fits into this history and his style, co-opting both Abraham Lincoln and Martin Luther King in one gesture, shows his cunning.

Here’s an example of the though world in his crowd:

Becky Benson, 56, traveled from Orlando, Fla., because, she said, “we
believe in Jesus Christ, and he is our savior.” Jesus, she said, would
not have agreed with what she called the redistribution of wealth in the
form of the economic stimulus package, bank bailouts and welfare. “You
cannot sit and expect someone to hand out to you,” she said. “You don’t
spend your way out of debt.”

Perhaps Ms. Benson and Mr. Beck have not thoroughly read their bible:

Luke 4:

18“The Spirit of the Lord is on me,
because he has anointed me
to preach good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
and recovery of sight for the blind,
to release the oppressed,
19to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”



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