Getting Right With The Word “God,” Dammit

n a day when everyone in the country is talking about Bill Clinton’s amazing speech on Wednesday night, I clicked on Fox “News” dot com and I found this:

What? Are you kidding me?

I understand that right-wingers want to steer everyone away from Clinton’s devastating attack on Republicans and his emphatic support for Barack Obama, but this is bleeping ridiculous.

The fake controversy is over the word “God” and its absence from the Democratic Party platform, and over how when Obama demanded the thing be “fixed,” that God-hating Democratic delegates booed God’s holy name.

Except that “God” is not his name at all. You see, God doesn’t have a name, or he has a thousand names, depending on whom you ask.

In their party platform, Republicans managed to slip in the word a whopping 12 times! Wow, they really do love God! Democrats instead of using the word “God,” substituted “faith,” as in, “Faith has always been a central part of the American story.” How controversial that is. God, who told us in the book of Hebrews that “without faith it is impossible to please him,” must really be displeased over that phrasing. He is fickle that way, you know.

In their 2008 platform Democrats only mentioned God once, which just goes to show that they hate God a little bit more this time around. Oh, my, Allah. (Allah, I remind you, is not God’s name either. It is just Arabic for “God.”)

Yes, believe it or not, that is what has right-wingers so outraged, albeit most of it is phony outrage designed to deflect the power of Clinton’s convention speech and to divert attention away from a very successful Democratic convention.

But still, these people are nuts.

Paul Ryan, now affectionately known as “Lyin’ Ryan,” said today that Democrats “were against God before they were for him.” Yep, he said that. Let me repeat it, or, no, I’ll let him repeat it:

Again, these people are nuts. They really are.

Apparently this all began with a post from David Brody, the chief political correspondent for the Christian Broadcasting Network, home to kooky evangelical Pat Robertson. Brody began his short piece this way:

Guess what? God’s name has been removed from the Democratic National Committee platform.

Again, Mr. Brody, who ought to know better, has it all wrong. “God” is not God’s “name,” okay? If right-wingers want to have God all to themselves they ought to at least get right with the word “God,” dammit.

On Wednesday Paul Ryan said the following about the “rather peculiar” “purges of God” from platform language:

It’s not in keeping with our founding documents, our founding vision, but I guess you would have to ask the Obama administration why they purged all this language from their platform.

Forget that it wasn’t the Obama administration who “purged” the language. It was Mr. Obama, in a unintended tribute to ignorance and bigotry, who eventually restored it on Wednesday over the objection of some thinking Democrats.

But as for those “founding documents” and our “founding vision” that Ryan referenced, huh? What is he talking about?

You can check the body of the Constitution from now until Jesus comes back to play General Patton at Armageddon and you won’t find the word “God” anywhere. You can find “Nature’s God” only once in the Declaration of Independence, which has deistic, not theistic, connotations.

So Paul Ryan, genius of the GOP, is just plain goofy, like the rest of the conservatives who hope this stupidity resonates with the undecided American electorate.

The question I ask, after all this embarrassing nonsense, is this: Now that Republicans are attacking Democrats over God, is Mittens’ weird religion—the guy may get up every morning and don sacred skivvies for Allah’s sake!—now fair game?

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  1. People run the government.
    I don’t remember any place in the New Testament where Christ concerned himself with getting involved with government unless you count where he drove the money lenders from the temple.
    What makes some politicians think that God has an interest in seeing that they are successful in laying off federal workers, cutting programs for the poor, privatizing the Post Office, ending Social Security, fighting One Payer Health Care, and conducting wars?


    • Now lattn, surely you know that if God, whatever His name is, can take the time to tally up all the dead sparrows every year, he can also spare some attention to politics! And I don’t doubt that He’s got Jerry Falwell right there to help him sort it all out too.


    • Lattn,

      Whatever interest God has in such things, I am fairly confident they don’t neatly correspond with the interests of the Republican Party, even though some Republicans undoubtedly see it that way.



  2. writer89

     /  September 6, 2012

    They’re just trying to get right with Old Testament Jesus… you know, the one who’s mentioned exactly zero times in the Old Testament. Anybody count how many times J.C. was mentioned in the Republican platform?


  3. To all:

    After 5 weeks of the Constitutional Convention in that hot summer of 1787, Ben Franklin, a newly converted Christian, rose to address the members by noting that little progress was being make in the task at hand, there was a stark division and some animus between and among them, and that maybe a little guidance from above might help.

    “I therefore beg leave to move,” said Dr. Franklin, “that henceforth prayers imploring the assistance of Heaven, and its blessings on our deliberations, be held in this Assembly every morning before we proceed to business, and that one or more of the Clergy of the City be requested to officiate in that service.”

    Roger Sherman from Connecticut seconded the motion. Discussion followed generally along the lines that by having the clergy attend the highly “secret” sessions, that might send a signal about the difficulties they were having in getting the job done and thereby risk some states calling back their representatives. The other concern was that there was NO BUDGET, NO FUNDS available to hire a chaplain!

    So God, it turns out, was too expensive. As a result, the drafting one of the most revered governing and organic laws ever conceived by man, would have to proceed, gulp, atheistically. Tell that to the American Taliban.



    • Herb,

      I absolutely love the moral of this story, although I will quibble with your description of Ben Franklin as “a newly converted Christian.” From Franklin’s famous letter to Ezra Stiles, which describes as, “Franklin’s final and most famous description his personal faith,” I offer you the following, excerpted from the letter, which I have segmented for ease of reading:

      You desire to know something of my Religion. It is the first time I have been questioned upon it: But I do not take your Curiosity amiss, and shall endeavour in a few Words to gratify it. Here is my Creed:

      I believe in one God, Creator of the Universe. That He governs it by his Providence.

      That he ought to be worshipped.

      That the most acceptable Service we can render to him, is doing Good to his other Children.

      That the Soul of Man is immortal, and will be treated with Justice in another Life respecting its Conduct in this.

      These I take to be the fundamental Principles of all sound Religion, and I regard them as you do, in whatever Sect I meet with them.

      As to Jesus of Nazareth, my Opinion of whom you particularly desire, I think the System of Morals and his Religion as he left them to us, the best the World ever saw, or is likely to see; but I apprehend it has received various corrupting Changes, and I have with most of the present Dissenters in England, some Doubts as to his Divinity: tho’ it is a Question I do not dogmatise upon, having never studied it, and think it needless to busy myself with it now, when I expect soon an Opportunity of knowing the Truth with less Trouble.

      I see no harm however in its being believed, if that Belief has the good Consequence as probably it has, of making his Doctrines more respected and better observed, especially as I do not perceive that the Supreme takes it amiss, by distinguishing the Believers, in his Government of the World, with any particular Marks of his Displeasure.

      I shall only add respecting myself, that having experienced the Goodness of that Being, in conducting me prosperously thro’ a long Life, I have no doubt of its Continuance in the next, tho’ without the smallest Conceit of meriting such Goodness. 


      • You’re right. Franklin was a believer; a deist it seems. My atheist friends LIED to me. Can you believe it?


        • Don’t be too hard on yourself, Herb. So far as I can tell, deism is just another way of saying “I don’t know”, so the distinction from atheism is a fuzzy one at best. IMHO.


  4. RDG,

    Conservatives — or one anyway — makes an irrefutable case that God is unnaturally attracted to squirrels.


    • You know, after I look at crazy shit like that, I wish the Internet hadn’t been invented. Did you see his latest prediction? Marvel at it:

      8.16.12–I predict after we throw (prayers needed) Michele and her husband out of the Black House she will become the Chancellor of the Black Pooper Party, assuming they haven’t moved to a Chateau, inland on theYangtze River in China with all their loot and our countries secrets.


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