On 02 September, PBS gadfly Bill Moyers undertook a hatchet job on Ralph Reed, current head honcho of something called the Faith & Freedom Coalition, an organization with the aim of unseating President Obama. Moyers has worn a lot of hats, among which were a number for former president Lyndon Johnson, such as press secretary at one time and sort of chief of staff at another. Actually, he seemed to be numero uno gofer, among all the Johnson apparatchiks.
Followers of Johnson could understand how Moyers would know corruption when he sees it…or thinks he does. Reed has a history, too, as an evangelical politician, a sort of religious right-winger, who was closely associated at one time with Jack Abramoff, primo-lobbyist who went to the Big-House but is now out of prison, so Reed knows corruption when he sees it…or thinks he does. Both Moyers and Reed, one presumes, had a hand in various enterprises that were not all that savory, and so they can easily perform mutual hatchet jobs.
People with long memories can remember back to 1979, when Moyers devoted two of his PBS programs to then-professor Mansour Farhang (California State, Sacramento), an Iranian who appeared with Moyers to help Americans understand why the hostages were taken in Iran. Later, Farhang went home and became the Iranian ambassador to the UN but left Iran in 1981 – actually fled before being beheaded. To his credit, he was at least at odds with the fanatical Ayatollah Khomeini, who held on to the hostages until inauguration day, 1981, when he probably felt that Ronald Reagan would not waste words before laying waste his dollhouse.
Moyers might also be remembered for his non-part in Jimmy Carter’s New Baptist Covenant clambake, co-hosted by Bill Clinton, in January 2008 in Atlanta shortly before the Georgia Primary pitting Hillary against Obama. The speakers – like Bill Clinton (slight smell?) and Al Gore – were to be Baptists, Moyers included, having earned his M. Div. degree at Southwestern Baptist Seminary and been a one-time preacher. Problem: Moyers had long since left the Baptists and for decades had been a member of the United Church of Christ denomination (the denomination of President Obama and the Rev. Dr. Jeremiah “God damn America” Wright).
Moyers was suddenly replaced – one forgets the reason given – by author John Grisham, a Baptist and Hillary Clinton-supporter and fundraiser. The conference was designed not to include the 16-million-member Southern Baptist Convention, second only to the Roman Catholic denomination in membership, with whose pooh-bas Carter had had a falling-out over theology, such as that part concerning same-sex unions, which Carter insisted should be officially sanctioned. The SBC gang considered that to be approval of homosexual behavior, against which the scriptures inveigh mightily. Could the Carter-Clinton NBC be categorized as the joining of church & state? Oh yeah! Unfortunately or not, Hillary lost the Primary anyway.
Moyers made much of the fact that Reed’s outfit is a “501C-4” nonprofit and thus is not required to divulge information regarding its funding – a super-pac, in other words. Contributors may not claim exemptions vis-à-vis the IRS. There are lots of super-pacs, as Moyers knows, but he made an issue out of the FFC as if it were some nefarious scheme.
Speaking of such schemes, especially as related to religion, Moyers might have mentioned a scheme cooked-up in 2003-04 by former National Council of Churches VIP Albert Pennybacker and folks like Jesse Jackson and James Dunn, former director of the Baptist Joint Committee, an organization devoted to advancing the separation of church and state. The “scheme” was called the Clergy Leadership Network, operated by Pennybacker with offices in Washington, with Jackson and Dunn on its board.
The first paragraph of the CLN Mission Statement: “As clergy--pastors, rabbis, imams, and other religious leaders, both men and women--we are deeply concerned about the well being of our country, we are committed to sweeping changes--changes in faltering political leadership and its increasing lack of credibility and rejection of public policies increasingly seen as not only failing but actually destructive of the quality of current life and America's future.” The CLN became the “Religious Left.”
The actors in the CLN were not identified as “citizens” concerned about the well-being of the country; rather, they were clearly identified as clergy and other religious leaders, so it would seem that their sole purpose was to tear down the wall that separates state and church (synagogue, mosque) by entering the elective process through religious convictions/actions only, else they would not have identified themselves unmistakably and solely as “religious leaders.” The CLN was also a PAC (501C-4) dedicated to one purpose, the election of a specific candidate, John Kerry. It was partly funded by George Soros, the liberal billionaire and world’s highest-profile atheist, bankroller of wacko-liberal MoveOn.org, and darling of leftist causes.
Or…take the far-left-religious Sojourners organization, with presidential adviser Rev. Jim Wallis as its CEO and editor-in-chief of its magazine. Though Wallis lied about it at least once and admitted it, Sojourners was given a $200,000 grant by the Soros-funded Open Society Institute in 2004, after which Wallis received two more grants, with the Sojourners kitty growing from $1.6 million in 2001-02 to $5.3 million in 2008-09, not to mention another $100,000 in 2006 for the Christians for Comprehensive Immigration Reform campaign. One can guess what that was all about.
Soros funds groups advancing abortion, atheism, same-sex marriage and, of course, huge government, which can never touch anyone as wealthy as he is. This is another example of the Religious Left, except that Soros is anything but religious! He just “uses” religionists for his causes, and they, of course, desert biblical principles and theology for the money.
So…Moyers can flail away at those naughty “religious right” characters but those religionists of his ultra-liberal bent, like Carter, Pennybacker and Wallis, take a back seat to no one when it comes to nefarious schemes. Indeed, they have a readymade constituency in probably most if not all the so-called mainline denominations since these groups are either ambivalent on important issues or blatantly committed to politically correct theology rather than the unmistakable biblical mandates. They prefer shades of gray for everything, eschewing any notion of absolutes, i.e., if they believe anything at all.