Rick Warren vs. the IRS — Talk About the “Bully Pulpit!”

18 01 2009

Church and State, God and Government. Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Follow the money.

Can we all agree “Capitol Ministries” is oxymoronic?

The IRS may have beaten Obama’s incoming treasury secretary, an embarrassing revelation as yet unforgiven by holier-than-thou conservative critics in his confirmation hearings, but the inaugural invocation Tuesday will be given by a man who corrupted the power of both god and government to embarrass the IRS instead.

Cock of the snook to Jeff Sharlet’s religion journalism site The Revealer for this, which is truly “revealing” of the political hardball behind the pious — and personally penurious — pastor:

Rick Warren vs. The IRS
15 January 2009
Just how powerful is Rick Warren? Ask the IRS. When they tried to collect back taxes from the pastor, Warren used his mega-clout to campaign against them — and won. With the help of Congress, that is, which stepped in to preempt a court ruling on the Cold War law Warren appears to have twisted to his advantage. Jon Weiner reports. This small piece is in many ways the most revealing article we’ve read on Warren — and church and state — in awhile. That it’s published in the left-liberal Nation shouldn’t dissuade more conservative readers from considering the facts.

See also Devoted Actors vs. Rational Actors by Scott Atran, at Edge dot org:

SCOTT ATRAN is a research director in anthropology at the National Center for Scientific Research in Paris, France. He is also visiting professor of psychology and public policy at the University of Michigan and presidential scholar in sociology at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice, New York City.

He is the author of many books including “In Gods We Trust: The Evolutionary Landscape of Religion” (Evolution and Cognition Series).

Earlier snooking of bully pulpits as actual bullying, in both Church and State matters:

Is God Real? Is God Reasonable? Is it Reasonable to Even Ask?

Reason may need a crash body-building course if it’s gonna face down the sand-kicking believing beach bullies . . .

Where Child Abuse Hides and How It Might Heal, Sunday or Not

Plenty of people both inside and outside resent the hell out of it all. . . .I watched Rick Warren’s entire Saddleback event with McCain and Obama live last night, in his megachurch changing politics, and just marveled at how different people approach the same Big Questions, and how different observers hear their answers. . .

Barack Obama, Rick Warren and Dan Dennett

[Warren says] “Surrendered people follow God’s word even if it doesn’t make sense.” . .
Dennett’s last line is particularly good imo: “I wish this meme would go extinct!”

Who Taught the NASCAR Dads to Pray? They’re a Quart Low!