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dogemperor [userpic]
Shakeup at faith-based and community initiatives

LJ-SEC: (ORIGINALLY POSTED BY [info]wyldraven)

Director of faith-based initiatives leaving White House

Tom Delay will not head the Office of Management and Budget.

Excerpt )

Methinks the gentleman doth protest too much.

dogemperor [userpic]
Apocalyptic President

LJ-SEC: (ORIGINALLY POSTED BY [info]brigidsblest)

By Sidney Blumenthal
The Guardian UK
Thursday 23 March 2006

Even some Republicans are now horrified by the influence Bush has given to the evangelical right.

In his latest PR offensive President Bush came to Cleveland, Ohio, on Monday to answer the paramount question on Iraq that he said was on people's minds: "They wonder what I see that they don't." After mentioning "terror" 54 times and "victory" five, dismissing "civil war" twice and asserting that he is "optimistic", he called on a citizen in the audience, who homed in on the invisible meaning of recent events in the light of two books, American Theocracy, by Kevin Phillips, and the book of Revelation. Phillips, the questioner explained, "makes the point that members of your administration have reached out to prophetic Christians who see the war in Iraq and the rise of terrorism as signs of the apocalypse. Do you believe this? And if not, why not?"

Bush's immediate response, as transcribed by CNN, was: "Hmmm." Then he said: "The answer is I haven't really thought of it that way. Here's how I think of it. First, I've heard of that, by the way." The official White House website transcript drops the strategic comma, and so changes the meaning to: "First I've heard of that, by the way."

But it is certainly not the first time Bush has heard of the apocalyptic preoccupation of much of the religious right, having served as evangelical liaison on his father's 1988 presidential campaign. The Rev Jerry Falwell told Newsweek how he brought Tim LaHaye, then an influential rightwing leader, to meet him; LaHaye's Left Behind novels, dramatizing the rapture, Armageddon and the second coming, have sold tens of millions.

The rest behind the cut... )

The article can be found here.

dogemperor [userpic]
Grants flow to Bush allies on social issues

LJ-SEC: (ORIGINALLY POSTED BY [info]vanar_en_daeor)

Federal programs direct at least $157 million to conservative groups


For years, conservatives have complained about what they saw as the liberal tilt of federal grant money. Taxpayer funds went to abortion rights groups such as Planned Parenthood to promote birth control, and groups closely aligned with the AFL-CIO got Labor Department grants to run worker-training programs.

In the Bush administration, conservatives are discovering that turnabout is fair play: Millions of dollars in taxpayer funds have flowed to groups that support President Bush's agenda on abortion and other social issues.

Continue reading here: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/11951695

This is where the money's goin'.

dogemperor [userpic]


· White House increases awards to faith groups
· Concern that public funds used to gain converts

dogemperor [userpic]
Fancy that.


Executive Order: Responsibilities of the Department of Homeland Security with Respect to Faith-Based and Community Initiatives

By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, and in order to help the Federal Government coordinate a national effort to expand opportunities for faith-based and other community organizations and to strengthen their capacity to better meet America's social and community needs, it is hereby ordered as follows:

Section 1. Establishment of a Center for Faith-Based and Community Initiatives at the Department of Homeland Security.

dogemperor [userpic]
Government, abstinence-only program agree to wait


The federal government agreed to stop funding a nationwide program that promotes teen abstinence to settle a lawsuit alleging the money was used for Christian proselytizing.

dogemperor [userpic]
Faith- or Bigotry- based government?


This Talk To Action story talks about the spread of 'faith-based' initiatives and the destruction of secular services in favor of faith based ones:

The Faith-Based Initiative represents a dramatic shift in the way government funds social welfare services for our nation's most needy citizens. The design and implementation of the initiative raise serious and deeply troubling implications for the religious freedom of all Americans -- and the integrity of our nation's religious institutions.

No one knows how much money is being pumped into them. There is no accountability. We only know what programs are being slashed to hand their funding over to the religious organizations.

Bush has pushed for increased funding for religion-based groups while proposing deep cuts for many traditional anti-poverty programs. The result is that many small church- and community-based social service programs are slowly assuming the lead role in the war on poverty once held by long-established community development organizations..... Bush's 2006 budget proposed slashing public housing subsidies, food stamps, energy assistance, community development, social services and community services block grants -- programs that for decades have constituted the federal anti-poverty fight....

At the same time, Bush's budget proposal for next year contemplates adding $385 million in new religion-based programs to this year's eventual total. The federal government awarded more than $2 billion in such grants in 2004 -- nearly double the amount awarded in 2003. Funding under the president's faith- and community-based initiative has gone up despite Congress's refusal to enact legislation that would allow faith-based groups to discriminate by religion when hiring staff, something Bush says should be allowed as long as they offer their services to people of all faiths and do not use federal money to proselytize.

None of this money is going to any non-Christian group. Not a single penny- to Muslim, Buddhist, Jewish, or Pagan groups. It's all Christian, and all conservative. {Source]

And funding these groups gives them permission to discriminate in their hiring practices, which groups like the Salvation Army openly do- discriminating against non-Christians, women, and single people.

They waste money- and are not effective. These Faith-based myths should be read and understood. This is all a part of the deliberate dismantling of the organs of secular government and the bankrupting of that government in favor of creating a Christian structure of government that will take over when the old secular government collapses.

Thing is: the Christian version is weaker and more corrupt than the secular. We need to understand this, and do what we can to try to preserve and reverse the deliberate corrosion and starving of our secular entities. While they are not perfect, they are accountable, and are inclusive, which cannot be said about the Christian organizations.

dogemperor [userpic]
Religious groups chunk of AIDS money


Yeah, and that chunk funds the religious right's 'abstenence only' nonsense, and actually spreads the disease.

More here.

dogemperor [userpic]
Abstinence-Only Programs May Withhold Valuable Health Information

LJ-SEC: (ORIGINALLY POSTED BY [info]britzkrieg)

From MedPage:

Abstinence-only education programs are not turning out to be a panacea for the problems inherent in adolescent and premarital sex. Indeed, they may deprive adolescents and young adults of critical sexual health information that could protect them from potentially life-threatening sexually transmitted diseases, researchers here reported in a literature review in the January issue of Journal of Adolescent Health...

Abstinence-only sex education programs have been increasing in popularity, and federal funding for these programs has jumped significantly over the past decade, from $60 million in 1998 to $168 in 2005...

While parents appear supportive of teaching their children both abstinence and ways to protect against STDs and pregnancy, current government policies appear to suggest that there is no room for sexual health information in abstinence-only education. They also noted that many faith-based organizations are receiving increased funding to promote an abstinence-only message.
Full Article

dogemperor [userpic]
A bit scary

LJ-SEC: (ORIGINALLY POSTED BY [info]squidflakes)

In his Newsweek column, Rabbi Marc Gellman praises the actions of the Evangelicals for their assistance after Katrina with phrases like:

"I hope that even people who are suspicious of their motives for America can admire the power of their good works when America needed good works the most."


"Even if they wanted to evangelize the storm-tossed remnants after giving them food, shelter and clothing—who cares?"

This is exactly the sort of attitude that lets the Talibangicals get away with their various schemes. Not to vilify charity here, but turning a blind eye to their true purpose is like letting a rabid dog loose in a pre-school just because it scared off some thieves in the night.

Charity is a fantastic cover, as Jim Jones found out in the late 70s, and because it has been abused to such an extent, I think that charitable organizations should be held to the same standards for reporting and conduct as any other business. As we've read, the Salvation Army has a lock on the modern day American Slave Market, but that remains one of those wink-and-a-nod secrets. If any for-profit business tried to emulate, they would be set upon faster than hungry shark on a fat baby seal, but since the Salvation Army is a charitable organization (and a "Christian" one at that), they fall completely under the radar.

The original article can be found here. Item #3

dogemperor [userpic]
Dominionism and coercion: Dealing with the cultic mindset

Several people--both on Dark Christianity and on Talk2Action--have asked in part what we can do in regards to dominionists (especially in relation to the spiritual abuse inherent in dominionism).

Some have even asked how we can persuade dominionists to, well, not be dominionists.

The problem is that--because dominionism is, at its core, a spiritually abusive movement with political aspirations it isn't that simple at all...because you have to fight the programmed mindset.

Dominionism and the cultic mindset )

dogemperor [userpic]

LJ-SEC: (ORIGINALLY POSTED BY [info]hephaestos)

Sigh. Here's a new one.

dogemperor [userpic]
Rogers Piercy declared war on the Salvation Army




There's very little online about Rogers Piercy and what he knows, or believes he knows. He's been sending them letters detailing their faults for a long time. I'd love to see all his writings. I don't know if he still does this. I've just spent a little time searching him on a couple different search engines, and while he pops up shining the light on them in a couple forums, I haven't found a webpage where he posts all his letters.

dogemperor [userpic]
Evangelism in the Workplace


While reading an article on Talk To Action, I found links to two articles about evangelism in the workplace. I thought I'd share them with you.

Christianity in the workplace
Can faith and work share space?

The U.S. Small Business Administration, the Better Business Bureau and the commissioner of the revenue have no category for them. They have no official logo and no trade union. These businesses rank from the Fortune 500 to the not so fortunate. They employ handfuls or hundreds and string from Honolulu to Hartford.

They are Christian-owned and Christian-run businesses, and depending on your persuasion, you may be inclined to swear by them – or at them. But one thing is for certain: It’s harder these days to spot what’s what.

“It’s such an organic thing,” said Randy Singer, an attorney-turned-missions-executive from Hampton Roads who travels across the country teaching what it means to be a Christian businessperson. He is also an adjunct professor at Regent University.

“I’m seeing a lot of blurring between what a Christian business is and what a secular business is. People are integrating spiritual aspects of their lives into the workplace, which is driven by this macro-force of blurring the lines between work and other parts of our lives. Many people are working from home. Fewer people are punching time clocks. When that happens, you can’t compartmentalize faith and work. They blend together.”

But do they blend, or do they slam into a head-on collision? When should Christian employers ’fess up to their faith, and when will their transparency land them in the middle of a lawsuit? What follows is a look at how some Christian business educators and Christian business owners approach those questions, and how a sampling of the secular community responds.

This article has some excellent questions about handling religion in the workplace.

The following article is a stark illustration of that 'stealth dominionism' that is creeping out under the cover of government and starting to strangle our rights.

Justice Unit Puts Its Focus on Faith --
A little-known civil rights office has been busily defending religious groups.

One of the main jobs at the Justice Department is enforcing the nation's civil rights laws. So when a nonprofit group was accused of employment discrimination last year in New York, the department moved swiftly to intervene -- but not on the side one might expect.

The Salvation Army was accused in a lawsuit of imposing a new religious litmus test on employees hired with millions of dollars in public funds.

When employees complained that they were being required to embrace Jesus Christ to keep their jobs, the Justice Department's civil rights division took the side of the Salvation Army.

Defending the right of an employer using public funds to discriminate is one of the more provocative steps taken by a little-known arm of the civil rights division and its special counsel for religious discrimination.

The Justice Department's religious-rights unit, established three years ago, has launched a quiet but ambitious effort aimed at rectifying what the Bush administration views as years of illegal discrimination against religious groups and their followers.

Many court decisions have affirmed the rights of individuals in the public sector not to have religious beliefs imposed on them -- the Supreme Court ruling banning school-sponsored prayer in public schools among them. And courts have ruled that the rights of religious groups sometimes need protection too -- upholding, for example, their right to have access to public buildings for meetings.

But the argument that a religious institution spending public funds has the right to require employees to embrace its beliefs -- and that it will be backed by the Justice Department in doing so -- has changed the debate. It is an argument the Bush administration is making in Congress as well as in the courts.

If anyone knows if this case has been ruled on yet, let me know. It's a very critical case, as you can see.

dogemperor [userpic]
First Level of the Rabbit Hole

LJ-SEC: (ORIGINALLY POSTED BY [info]thornewilder)

The burrows go on forever! Just when you think you have a connection clarified, on it goes. I don't know where this tunnel will end, but I will post things as I uncover them.

My starting plan was to help dogemperor with the Big NOLA list. I was suspicious of a local national/international relief organization - Northwest Medical Teams.
I became suspicious when they attended a Full Gospel Business Men "Mayors Prayer Breakfast" AFTER they had been informed that FGBMFI went ON THE RECORD last year not allowing a Muslim Iman to lead a prayer. FGBMFI "interfaith cover" was blown.
I was suprised when NW Medical Teams attended the event even with the knowledge, so I made a note to dig deeper.

Stories about the Prayer Breakfast


When digging stuff up a number of names surfaced. For those of you who are bona fide researchers I am sure bells will ring: Greg Feste, Malachai Foundation, Council on National Policy, Morning Star International, Champions for Christ, Every Nation. Ultimately...that history was way too convoluted for me to follow and I decided it was not relevant to NW Med Teams per se. I just wanted folks to know as you dig, things come up.

ENTER: Pastors Resource Council, stated to be organized by Tony Perkins of the Louisiana Family Foundation. Names: Lee Dominique and Tony Perkins

The Pastors Resource Council has a Compassion Fund, on the bottom of their page, they are copyrighted by Chest of Joash.

Chest of Joash is registered with the Louisiana Secretary of State:
Names associated with Chest of Joash:
Riley Hagen, S.Chris Herndon, W.Lee Dominique (oh, snap!)
PLUS its mailing address is SUGAR LAND TEXAS.

On the PRCCompassion site, there is a list of their "Partners"
On this list is the "Northwest Medical Teams, President Bas Vanderzalm"

Information on Bas Vanderzalm, from NW Medical Leadership page

Note: Previous Jobs of Bas Vanderzalm:
Salvation Army Harbor Light Center Boston AND World Relief
(Both of which are on Dogemperor's Big NOLA list as Bad Guys)

Other Information:

SO, I leave this in your able hands. Where does NW Medical Teams fit on the NOLA list? This rabbit hole goes deeper...more to come

dogemperor [userpic]

LJ-SEC: (ORIGINALLY POSTED BY [info]thornewilder)

I am hot on the trail of dogemperor's proposed IRP. (Individual Research Project) The mission is to research charities for dogemperor's big NOLA list. I was rereading journals and realised I had never returned all the many favors dogemperor has done by answering my questions.

I have run across something I need a little direction on....are there now, or have there always been (last 30 years) quakers who prescribe to dominionist theology? The reason I ask is I have seemingly uncovered a nest of them (dominionists), wrapped inside a quaker educational institution...yet strangely it reaches into an evangelical group in Africa, across to abstinance only faith based and community initiative money, and a medical rescue/mission...Quakers and Evangelicals? Mixed on each others board of directors?

(sung to the tune of bert and ernie....one of these things is not like the others...)

Anyway, I am hoping to give a little back for the dogemperor...

I know the Vineyard movement (known Coercive, via Rick Ross, was born after the Quaker founder was asked to leave the Quakers....on to Calvary Chapel....on to Vineyard.) Anyone know of dominionist influences in Quaker establishments?

Any tips?

dogemperor [userpic]
Church and State post Katrina

LJ-SEC: (ORIGINALLY POSTED BY [info]kittynboi)


Churches, local government ties strengthen after Katrina

By The Associated Press
The Mississippi agency that promotes President Bush’s faith-based initiative usually draws about 25 church groups to its sessions on tapping government funds for social service projects. This month, that number nearly doubled.

It is just one sign that, as congregations in the Gulf Coast and surrounding states begin to focus on long-term recovery from Hurricane Katrina, a closer relationship between churches and state and local governments is developing.

The trend fits neatly with Bush’s second-term goal of encouraging states and cities to get more involved with his faith-based initiative, since large sums of tax dollars go to states as block grants. The states “control where the money goes,” said Bryan Jackson of the Roundtable on Religion and Social Policy, a nonpartisan research group.


I doubt a great deal of people in general will question if this is good or not. I'm not against helping the less fortunate or disaster victims, but people really need to be aware that helping is often NOT the only goal of these groups, and bringing them closer to government is a bad idea.

dogemperor [userpic]
another story to make you sick

LJ-SEC: (ORIGINALLY POSTED BY [info]jehovahsfitness)

"Christians" refuse to give drinking water to Wilma victims

(x-posted to [info]religious_left)

dogemperor [userpic]
Welcome to Faith-based America


Welcome to Faith-Based America
By Stephen Pizzo, News for Real
Posted on October 22, 2005, Printed on October 22, 2005
From AlterNet

What's wrong with this picture?

As part of President Bush's "faith-based initiative," US taxpayers gave the Salvation Army's children services division $47 million this year -- 95% of its total budget. Several Salvation Army employees refused to take the Salvation Army's pledge "proclaiming Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord," reveal which church they belong to or identify gay co-workers -- and were summarily fired.

Let's parse this event out. The money came from American taxpayers, many of whom are not Christians. Nevertheless the workers were fired for refusing to pledge allegiance to the Christian prophet. They were also fired for failing to disclose their own religious affiliations, if any. And finally, they were fired for refusing to rat out their co-workers.

Sounds like something that would happen in Communist China, doesn't it? And, if it had happened in China, and it was Christians getting fired, you can bet your sweet bippy the Bush administration and America's Christian right would be screaming bloody murder about it.Read more... )

dogemperor [userpic]
[info]drgndancer's NOLA school post


Do you ever feel like you are betraying something important, but can't seem to think of a better idea?

First some background: The City of New Orleans has TERRIBLE public education. If it's not the worst in the country it's pretty darned close. Something like 80% of the schools are "failing" by federal standard; and while I'm not a big fan of standardized testing as a means of measuring school quality, as a former teacher in the district, these schools are "failing". The reasons for the failure of the schools system are many and varied, but amongst them are the fact that the school system has a small tax base (for complicated reasons), and the fact that many people don't want to pay school taxes because they send their kids to Catholic schools.

The Catholic school situation here is a vicious circle. In a city where over 50% of the population is Catholic, the Archdiocese has always run an excellent and very large school system. This system existed before the public school system and many, many people had their children in the Catholic system at the time that public schools first appeared. This has been the cause of a continual downward spiral of people not wanting to pay for schools that their kids don't attend, causing poor public schools, causing people to put their kids in Catholic Schools, causing people to not want to spend money on schools their kids don't attend.

In truth, we will probably send my children to Catholic schools here if we still live here at the time we have school age children. It's really the only choice available; it's that or send them to a horrible place where they won't learn anything. If we can't afford to have one of us stay home to home school, the kids will go to Catholic Schools (and they will not be the only non-Catholics, or even non- Christians to do so).

So anyway, that's the simple version of the situation pre-Katrina.
The Archdiocese has been pushing a school voucher plan for some time at the ate level, in order to (a) increase there number of students, and (b) try to help educate more of the children in the city in reasonable conditions. I truly do think that at least part of their motivation is a legitimate desire to help a bad situation, but I am sure there is greed involved as well. The State has resisted the voucher plan for years. They have long believed (correctly I think) that the way to save the New Orleans Public education system is not to gut it further.

That was then; this is now. Long story short, Katrina has decimated the already fragile public school system here. It is unlikely that the city will be able to open more than one each of an elementary, middle, and high school on the East Bank of the River for the fall semester. Even that much relies on making them charter schools run either internally (no school board interference), or by an outside agency (Tulane University has offered to run some). The local school board (have I mentioned the school board is horrifyingly mismanaged?) is reluctant to give up any power and may not approve the charters.
Just so we're clear, this is the local school bard screwing things up, not the State Education Dept. (BESE for Board of Elementary and Secondary Educations is the state board).

Into this crisis come the Archdiocese, who say that they can educate 3000 students right now. If we are going to rebuild, we have to have places for people to live and places for those people's kids to go to school. BESE is listening, and I can't say that I blame them.

One the plus side of the equation is the obvious, we will get schools for people to send their kids too. On the minus side are two things:
First, it further guts the public school system, and second it opens to door to the voucher idea. Even if the vouchers are made temporary, the idea is now in the public light, and not only the relatively benign Catholic schools benefit. What's to stop the next step from being the Baptist schools, the Assemblies of God Schools, etc.

A note from Sunfell )

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