The emperor has no clothes

Evangelical Right

Well, that's both Bush's backing, and the fervour of his convictions.
Although whenever he speaks he seems to have that bewildered look on his face - like he's waiting for the voices to start again in his head so he can continue. He SEEMS to get impassioned, but it doesn't look real, just well rehearsed. Not a big deal, if he was an intelligent and reliable leader I'd cut him some slack on it.
Anyways, it looks like Bush didn't worry about winning part of the middle, but focused on winning ALL of the Evangelical Right - and did so. It's a very well organized, cohesive, rich, focused group - a massive machine that saw an opportunity and mobilized. So he owes his re-election to them - and the next 4 years will be pay-back time. His brief speech talked about family and faith values, and moving forward with confidence and faith. Every second sentence seemed to mention faith.
I'm an atheist myself, or more likely an agnostic, I don't feel any need for religion or god(s) in my life. Don't need it to explain how we got here, or what we're doing here. Or to tell me what is right and wrong, if I'm doing good in my life or not. Or to pass the hat for money or bang on my door shaking a bible in the air. I have developed my own set of values, they seem to work well for me, I am quite happy with my life and a positive influence (I hope) on those around me. I help others because I want to - not as an indulgence to get me out of purgatory faster. I raised my kids to be open minded about it, and helped them to also develop a good set of values - to make their own choices. They did go to various churches as they were learning - neither attend now. They may later - as long as it helps them, but is not a crutch, I wouldn't mind.
Religion seems to be spreading in the US, and it's an effective partner. It's an easy way to rally people, you can do things based on faith rather than facts, and if things are tough - well, there's always the hope of a happier afterlife.
Bush has promised to reunite a divided America. He said that 4 years ago, and for whatever reasons, it's divided even more - this was a vicious and polarizing campaign. But he only has two years to do so now.
This is because as we saw the campaign leading up to an election takes two years - when the party is focusing on defining themselves in a strong position, racking up all the brownie points they can, and dissing their opponent at every turn. Plus, he's not running again, so doesn't care as much to build those bridges, leaving the rest of the Republican party busy promoting the next wide eyed zealot.
As for the Democrats - might be Kerry, I doubt it. And they seem to have less of a definite platform, other than being anti whatever Bush was doing. So they make take more than 4 years to become a serious challenger.

Maybe there's hope - Nixon showed if you really screw up you're out. But the only way Bush could do that is for the American economy to go down the tubes, massive terrorist attacks within, and anarchy in the Middle East. Hmmm - maybe that's not as much hope as I thought.


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