Pat Robertson Believes in Global Warming
August 3, 2006 8:04 PM   Subscribe

Pat Robertson believes in global climate change. *brain explodes* Far from heat-induced delirium, Pat may simply be following his flock: evangelicals have embraced the issue of global warming in recent months. Significantly, the environment and immigration are two issues that are gradually opening a scism between the corporatist and religious wings of the Republican Party, one that Democrats can exploit.
posted by Saucy Intruder (47 comments total)

 
You sure he didn't just say he believes in hell on Earth?
posted by Effigy2000 at 8:09 PM on August 3, 2006


even a stopped clock......
posted by TechnoLustLuddite at 8:17 PM on August 3, 2006


..the Democrats and their allies in the environmental and progressive faith movement can refocus their arguments away from science and towards moral values, conservationism, and public health.

Hasn't the environment always been a morale issue? When I was a Boy Scout we were taught to leave a campsite better than we found it. Being stewards of our environment for future generations is clearly a moral issue, and it makes sense to approach it as such - not as a "trick" to get votes, but because it is true.
posted by stbalbach at 8:19 PM on August 3, 2006


Being stewards of our environment for future generations is clearly a moral issue

Maybe for you it is a moral issue. Others of us see it as "survival of the fittest". I don't think Pat is in this latter group.
posted by mischief at 8:28 PM on August 3, 2006


Senator Inhofe will smite him for his blasphemy.
posted by homunculus at 8:32 PM on August 3, 2006


One thing that's always confused me was the religious right wingers who'd spew the anti-environmentalist crap. As stbalbach says, it's clearly a moral issue. While I detest Pat Robertson, I'm glad to see this schism opening up as it signals a more honest philosophy for the religious right.
posted by polyhedron at 8:33 PM on August 3, 2006


Being stewards of our environment for future generations is clearly a moral issue

Robertson and evangelicans see climate change as the coming of end times, not as a chance to be responsible human beings.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 8:34 PM on August 3, 2006


Well, it's definitely good to see him say this, because maybe this enormous issue will finally begin to sink in to his consitituency.

On the other hand, his reasoning makes me want to pull my hair out. IHe has reached his epiphany because of the current heat wave, calling it ..."the most convincing evidence I've seen on global warming in a long time."

Um. Yeah. Someone with a better scientific background want to express for the umpteenth time the difference between climate and weather? How this heat wave may be one tiny piece of evidence, but in and of itself is not remotely dispositive on the issue.

Still, if it convinces schmucks like Robertson to maybe try and do something, I guess it is worth it.
posted by John Smallberries at 8:34 PM on August 3, 2006


we allow homos to flourish, creating more sinners, resulting in a
population spike in hell, satan has more space to heat & souls to roast, and hence causing global warming.

it's the homos!
posted by Timberman at 8:39 PM on August 3, 2006


Maybe someone will need to coin a new word for this, because it may be unfair to lump all fundamentalist Christians or neo-conservatives with the following stereotype, but over the past several years I've noticed a growing number of people who fit the neo-con mold to also be End Of World Enthusiasts. My own Mom's been once since before I was born. A near obsession with the concept of Jesus Christ returning and the End Times to arrive with those apocalyptic horses and all the things John promised in the last book of the King James Bible. The breaking of the seven seals. War. Famine. Pestilence. Brady Bunch reruns twenty-four seven. Locusts the size of Winnebagoes. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. Dogs and cats living together. Mass hysteria!

Since before his first election, I've feared that Shrub and his administration consist of people so sick and twisted, they are purposefully using their places of power to manipulate events so that their interpretation of the Book of Revelations will come to pass in their lifetime. They WANT to bring about the end of the world. WHY? Because they believe that God will come to save them and leave the rest to die. Pat Robertson wants the world to end. He wants you to die, unless you happen to be just like him, then you're okay. His god will save you. *reacts to crawling skin* I would rather there be no god, then to be forced to accept Pat Robertson's god.
posted by ZachsMind at 8:52 PM on August 3, 2006 [1 favorite]


You guys got it all wrong! Global warming is caused by all the heat and sweat created while Pat Robertson goes to the gym for his 2,000 pound leg press routine every morning.
posted by daninnj at 8:53 PM on August 3, 2006 [1 favorite]


Isn't Revelation one of the more controversial parts of the Bible? From what I understand, the founder of modern Protestantism, Martin Luther dispute its veracity as well.

So why is it so universally accepted among Christians, who are largely protestant?

The "End Times" obsession is so bizarre too; no interpretation of the Bible suggests that G*d needs anyone to help him bring it about so why would anyone assume they could influence it?
posted by aubin at 9:10 PM on August 3, 2006


The fact that this heatwave came a few months after Gore's movie is a sign from God. Duh.
posted by delmoi at 9:17 PM on August 3, 2006


Maybe someone will need to coin a new word for this...

I think they already have.
posted by Zozo at 9:19 PM on August 3, 2006


Isn't Revelation one of the more controversial parts of the Bible? From what I understand, the founder of modern Protestantism, Martin Luther dispute its veracity as well.

So why is it so universally accepted among Christians, who are largely protestant?


Are you talking about fundies? If so -- because it's useful.
posted by treepour at 9:20 PM on August 3, 2006


Isn't Revelation one of the more controversial parts of the Bible? From what I understand, the founder of modern Protestantism, Martin Luther dispute its veracity as well.

So why is it so universally accepted among Christians, who are largely protestant?


It's not universally accepted, but those who think the sky is falling scream the loudest.
posted by zennie at 9:22 PM on August 3, 2006


It's not universally accepted, but those who think the sky is falling scream the loudest.

Indeed, there was a quick report on one of the evening news shows earlier this week regarding the growing number of churches that are preaching the end-of-days. They showed preachers from the southern part of the US (Texas is the only one I remember), and then a priest from the NE and he said it was absurd that preachers go around and tell people the end of times is here.

The preacher from TX was fervent in his belief that its soon at hand, while the naysayers talk in a calm and rational manner, expanding on the idea that Revelations was not to be taken litterally (what? not take the bible litterally? what a novel idea!! </snark>)
posted by SirOmega at 9:32 PM on August 3, 2006


Its one thing to belive the end of the world is comming, but it's another to belive it's going to happen in the next few years. How ignorant of history can you be? I mean, humans have been around for about 100,000 years (homo sapiens) what makes this lifetime so special? Bleh.
posted by delmoi at 9:45 PM on August 3, 2006


Isn't Revelation one of the more controversial parts of the Bible? From what I understand, the founder of modern Protestantism, Martin Luther dispute its veracity as well.

Luther disputed a bunch of other Bible books as well, including the Epistle of James, since it didn't jibe with his theology. In the end, Revelation and James.

The problem with Revelation is that it's prophecy AND code AND written to a specific audience AND real AND not real. It's a really hard book to understand unless you have a working knowledge of the late 1st century church, which most lay people and televangelists don't have.

But the imagery is powerful. Whores and horsemen and bowls and beasts and golden cities. It makes for great fahr 'n' brimstone source material.

Indeed, there was a quick report on one of the evening news shows earlier this week regarding the growing number of churches that are preaching the end-of-days. They showed preachers from the southern part of the US (Texas is the only one I remember), and then a priest from the NE and he said it was absurd that preachers go around and tell people the end of times is here.

Sounds like a slow news day. Those of us who grew up in the Bible Belt heard the same stuff 10-15-20-25 years ago. Did you know Ronald Wilson Reagan has six letters in each name? 6-6-6. HE IS THE BEAST!!
posted by dw at 9:53 PM on August 3, 2006


Er...

In the end, Revelation and James stayed in the Bible.
posted by dw at 9:54 PM on August 3, 2006


That flip-floppin' son of a bitch!
posted by Laugh_track at 11:23 PM on August 3, 2006


Senator Inhofe will smite him for his blasphemy.

As a former Okie, I'm in the camp of being horrified and yet not at all surprised. This is the state which elected it's democratic governor on the strength of two things. First, an autodialer from Barry Switzer telling all Oklahoma residents to vote for him (this is also how Clark won the democratic primary there) and Second, his promise not to outlaw cockfighting (which was the first thing he did once inaugurated.)

Oklahoma tends to be wildly Republican in it's politics, but in person, far more liberal than epected in it's ideology. I've written about this in posts before, but for instance, of the five guys nominated for Prom King in my town (Bartlesville) two were openly gay, one of whom won. This wasn't a weird gimmick, but just rather just because they were among the most popular people in school. Their sexuality, while well-known, was rarely ever brought up.

In truth, politics in Oklahoma is irrascible precisely because it's practically meaningless. Nobody gives two shits about Oklahoma. No matter who is in power, the fate of Oklahoma stays the same, which is poverty for most, and wealth and cheap living for those in the oil industry. Nobody really campaigns there, because the outcome is predetermined, and why make hard-to-keep promises in a state that cheers for their party like a local baseball team?

In truth, if Oklahoma had a professional sports team, I bet we'd see a lot more political difference there, but right now, the myopia is channeled into voting republican, no matter how obvious the corporate graft.

Maybe someone will need to coin a new word for this...

The word is eschatology, which means, roughly, study of the end times. Interestingly, somebody (I can't remember who... Summon dubold, as I know he remembers) said that environmentalism is the eschatology of the left. There's some inconvenient truth to that, even though environmentalism is supported by science, as opposed to unverifiable, mellenia-old texts the refutation of which bars one from American politics.

But I don't mean to shit on the Bible, either. I'm not a Christian, but I've found great wisdom in it regradless, and I wonder if I was turned off of Christianity by the likes of Pat Robertson, who co-opts cherry-picked selections of scripture to serve his own agenda and then calls himself divine.

I do know this, though: when someone plays to his religious base while funding sandanistas, calling for the death of foreign leaders, and publicly prayng for more donations to build his investment base, I won't trust him simply because he says, "Well, it's hot outside, maybe I'll agree with all this global warming research."
posted by Navelgazer at 11:33 PM on August 3, 2006 [2 favorites]


Yes, global warming jibes well with the End Times bs. To understand this, any evidence of the End Times -- the tsunami, earth quakes (even in Japan), SARS, etc. acts as a confirmation of the Fundies' belief system. Whenever one of these events goes off, the Fundies can look at each other knowingly, seeing another piece of the puzzle appear to them. Like ZachsMind above, my mom is one of these people so I've seen this close up for a while now.

They yearn for this release from this Earthly hell. According to Time, 60% of the US believes in the End Times of the Revelation. According to Newsweek:
The largest segment buying into such an apocalyptic scenario is Evangelical Protestants (71%), but only 28% of non-Evangelical Protestants and 18% of Roman Catholics share this belief.
Note that Evangelical Christians were Bush's 2nd-largest voting block in 2004, breaking for him at 78% (apparently Walmart shoppers were Bush's #1 deme, at 85% support, but he's lost the Walmart folks now).

45% of the US says they believe Jesus is coming in their lifetime. Yes, we are a nation of dumbasses.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 11:48 PM on August 3, 2006


Senator Inhofe will smite him for his blasphemy.

Did I mention that I went to junior high with one of his sons and knew one of his daughters as well?

His kids were nice and relatively smart. And they seemed sane, too (unlike their father). As for gay....
posted by dw at 12:26 AM on August 4, 2006


Pat needs some freinds at DCI to make him a video.
posted by missbossy at 1:49 AM on August 4, 2006


friends
posted by missbossy at 1:52 AM on August 4, 2006


Reality's a bitch, ain't it Pat. Don't worry though, it doesn't matter what you said before as long as you jump on the bandwagon at the last minute. You're friends and allies and lackeys will forgive you -- and in the meantime you'll have made a hell of a lot of money telling people what they wanted to hear: that things aren't bad as all that.
posted by moonbiter at 2:33 AM on August 4, 2006


For the love of god keep Robertson AWAY. Dems can be and are stupid enough to actually think people buy into Roberston shit ? Just because some people is extremely vociferous and seeks attention by the means of saying you're a fucking homo and we should throw you in the owen that DOES NOT imply that people buy this hatemongering bullshit.

Believing that people does is the first error, it gives Robertson a credibility he does NOT have. Look for instance at the FCC scandal obscenime schmobsceinity stuff...the propest by "thousand of outraged lovely mothers" are copy-and-paste electronics...the SCANDAL about sex is built on the idea sex is scandalous and the following interest by millions does NOT happen because sex is "obscene" but because people are interested in sex. DUH , people is also interested in food, that doesn't make food nasty !

Keep not only Robertson away, but all the scaremongering crowd. Show some balls, even Zapatero understood that by not messing with the Pope (and then doing ordinaring backdealing like everybody else)
posted by elpapacito at 3:16 AM on August 4, 2006


How ignorant of history can you be?

Supposedly when Ma Ferguson was Governor (Governess?) of Texas, where they have the line-item veto, she lined-out an appropriation for foreign-language instruction in secondary schools, commenting, "If English was good enough for Jesus, it's good enough for the school children of the great state of Texas."
posted by pax digita at 4:17 AM on August 4, 2006


Robertson's position is confusing to me. He seems to be saying we should do something to combat climate change. But, it seems to me, evangelicals, while being on the bandwagon believing in climate change, would jump right off again when it comes to actually reversing it. See, global warming (and the turmoil it releases) fulfills endtimes prophesy. As such, it seems they would push for increased emissions, in order to hasten the end.

They need to stay on message, dammit! Stop confusing me!
posted by Thorzdad at 4:44 AM on August 4, 2006


In return, I will concede that yes, he can legpress 2000 pounds.
posted by riotgrrl69 at 4:57 AM on August 4, 2006


Zapatero is cool
posted by jeffburdges at 5:04 AM on August 4, 2006


Nobody gives two shits about Oklahoma

Not true. I consider it a valuable buffer between me and Texas.

45% of the US says they believe Jesus is coming in their lifetime.

I hope so. They've been fluffing him long enough.
posted by eriko at 5:08 AM on August 4, 2006


This is a safe issue for Robertson and the fundamentalists to flip-flop on. Being against global warming doesn't compromise any of their principles. They're going to endorse doing something about it, get it off the table, and focus back on basics: "family values" issues like abortion, sex education, same sex marriage, illegal aliens, evolution/creationism, and the like.
posted by beagle at 5:21 AM on August 4, 2006


eriko writes "45% of the US says they believe Jesus is coming in their lifetime."

The same 45% think Jesus is the name of a rock band.
posted by elpapacito at 5:34 AM on August 4, 2006


The "End Times" obsession is so bizarre too; no interpretation of the Bible suggests that G*d needs anyone to help him bring it about so why would anyone assume they could influence it?

45% of the US says they believe Jesus is coming in their lifetime.


Watch therefore, for you don't know the day nor the hour in which the Son of Man is coming.

Matthew 25:13

posted by ZenMasterThis at 6:02 AM on August 4, 2006


Revelation is the "X-Men" of scripture. Jesus is a mutant. Do comic books have a relationship to reality? Yes and no.

I don't mean to be blasphemous [I'm an Episcopal priest], but the general theme is that God wins.

There is never just one apocalypse. The Apocalypse is almost always happening.

But the book is about dreaming of an idealized future, usuallly founded upon yearning for an idealized past.
posted by john wilkins at 6:36 AM on August 4, 2006


I promise you all now, he will not be earning a spot on my spirituality radio show for this.
posted by parmanparman at 6:41 AM on August 4, 2006


Tell us, Leader Robertson, who should we whack to stop the scourge of global warming?
posted by Western Infidels at 6:58 AM on August 4, 2006


Isn't Revelation one of the more controversial parts of the Bible? From what I understand, the founder of modern Protestantism, Martin Luther dispute its veracity as well.

Luther disputed a bunch of other Bible books as well, including the Epistle of James, since it didn't jibe with his theology. In the end, Revelation and James.


Card-carrying Lutheran here. I've been told again and again by Lutheran ministers (ELCA by the way, which is NOT to be confused with the conservative synods) that Revelations is the province of either very experienced theologians, or complete fools - if you are neither of these, stay the hell away from it.
posted by Ber at 7:31 AM on August 4, 2006


navelgazer said: "The word is eschatology, which means, roughly, study of the end times. Interestingly, somebody (I can't remember who... Summon dubold, as I know he remembers) said that environmentalism is the eschatology of the left. There's some inconvenient truth to that, even though environmentalism is supported by science, as opposed to unverifiable, mellenia-old texts the refutation of which bars one from American politics."

navelgazer:

I can't remember what site I was reading when we had that discussion- google's not turning up the article I was thinking of. It did come up with this however.

I think that eschatalogical impulse is, for both left and right, a deeply ingrained part of American culture, probably tapping into the guilt reservoir within us all-- a feeling that we're all going to pay for our lifestyle. whether you define sin as "playing polo using baby seals and Hummers" or "scoping out NAMBLA recruits at Gymboree" . There's definitely a strong feeling that those who don't respect God/Nature are irresponsibly screwing us all over, and if we don't do something there's going to be trouble.

I do think there's a bit of cheerleading for the Apocalypse going on whatever you believe... I know I've thought "just you wait till the oil runs out" whenever I see a giant SUV in Manhattan. I'm going to say that's indicative of the polarization between mindsets in the US, and the lack of discourse that doesn't devolve into hysterical namecalling, rather than attribute it to my own mean-spiritedness.

As far as Pat Robertson goes: he's not exactly a bellweather for any sort of mainstream conservative thought, AFAIK. I don't know any of my conservative relatives who really take him seriously. I suspect that he says things like this just to get into the news.
posted by dubold at 8:45 AM on August 4, 2006 [1 favorite]


escatalogical= The shit is gonna go down soon.
posted by dubold at 8:46 AM on August 4, 2006 [1 favorite]


sigh... when you google my name you inevitably get three results: Jim Ball Pontiac Buick GMC (catchy slogan, "you can get it all at Jim Ball."); Jim Ball the ultra-conservative Australian radio personality; and the Rev. Jim Ball mentioned in the NYtimes article linked to, founder of the Environmental Evangelical Network (or some such thing...).... None of them are me. It's really quite confusing...
posted by jrb223 at 8:53 AM on August 4, 2006


navelgazer: was it Ran Prieur we were talking about?
posted by dubold at 8:55 AM on August 4, 2006


"Not true. I consider [Oklahoma] a valuable buffer between me and Texas.

I'm seriously contemplating moving north. Maybe to Kansas City or Saint Louis. Some place cooler and less, oh I don't know, insane.
posted by ZachsMind at 9:05 AM on August 4, 2006


I mean, humans have been around for about 100,000 years (homo sapiens) what makes this lifetime so special? Bleh.

What makes this lifetime so special?

How about the fact that it is the 100,000th anniversary of humans on this planet? That sounds pretty damn special to me.
posted by flarbuse at 9:10 AM on August 4, 2006


Watch therefore, for you don't know the day nor the hour in which the son of man is coming.
Does it recommend a particular brand of watch? I mean, without any wristwatch at all, you certainly cannot know the day nor the hour. Would a $10 "Rollex" bought from a guy in Central Park be enough? What would Jesus do?
posted by nlindstrom at 11:36 AM on August 4, 2006


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