Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

No Left Turns

Populist God-talk from a plaintiff’s attorney

Is this an alternative future for socially-conservative evangelicals? Note that he’s campaigning against a classic business Republican.

Hat tip: Religion Clause.

Update: Incumbent Haley Barbour appears to be winning handily.

Discussions - 20 Comments

I read the linked article. That Eaves is running as a Democrat seems to me more likely an expedient way to run against the incumbent. Certainly not because he aligns with much, if any, part of the current Democrat party platform.

Call my cynical, but whenever I hear a politician talking about "banishing 'the money changers'," I get the creepy sense that he's talking about Jews.

I was struck by a politician invoking Matthew 6:24 -- "Ye cannot serve God and Mammon" -- and being wealthy enough himself to self-fund his campaign to the tune of $4.3 million.

Now, I know Jesus never said it's impossible for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of Heaven, just difficult. So when I hear of a wealthy "41-year-old plaintiff attorney" -- probably class action, but it doesn't say that in the article -- who holds to traditionally conservative values and invokes the name of Jesus frequently, but is running as a Democrat ... well, let's just say my skepticism meter jumps up a few notches.

And just like that we get back to the issue of "polytheism" ... :-)

It could well be the future of Christian Americans if the "prudent" power brokers of the GOP (and those less powerful bloggers here) can't disengage their lips from Giuliani/Romney's backside. Eaves will lose for now, but the future could be grim unless the GOP gets back on message.

Clint, you wrote: "but the future could be grim unless the GOP gets back on message."

In your mind, what is that message ... as it pertains to Christians in particular? Forget about "conservative" and all the various "value" issues. From the perspective of someone who professes faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour and a commitment to him as Disciple ... what exactly should the GOP message be?

"Banishing the money changers" is evangelical? anti-Semitic? No, it's pure FDR. Take a look at his First Inaugural Address: classic anti-corporate rhetoric that rang Dem bells for decades. http://www.bartleby.com/124/pres49.html

Well, Dennis, in FDR's day "money-changers" was often used as a codeword for Jews. Father Coughlin used it frequently.

Don: The message is not just about what speaks to evangelicals, but also about what speaks to Americans. Americans don't want compromises. We are tired of politicians who give us words instead of actions, pragmatism instead of justice, prudence instead of principle. We don't like it when politicians play games with the tax code to pick who wins and loses; we don't like it when they sell our national security for corporate profit; we don't like it when the ignore the plight of the poor; we don't like it when the government refuses to crack down on rampant crime. We want a nation where the poor are law abiding, and justly cared for [servants obey your masers combined with masters treat your servants justly.]

Does today's GOP, at least as represented by Giuliani stand for any of this? No, Giuliani doesn't even believe in justice, except that it exists when everyone is free to do whatever the heck they want (have abortions, gay marriage, divorce, etc)

We want traditional values not for the sake of conservatism but because they are right and because they are necessary. A country of crime, greed, secularism, abortion, etc, can't expect to ever reach a state where people are treated near justly.

Clint - You don't believe people should be allowed to divorce? And our country is just too darn greedy?


Who needs enemies, when we have socialistic, militant fundamentalist Christians on our side?

Who needs enemies, when we have socialistic, militant fundamentalist Christians on our side?

Don't play with words you don't understand.

Goof Grief! I see that John Moser is doing his whiney Jew schitck again.

For a person so anxious that everyone else put their ethnicity behind them, you seem to be obsessed with your own with myopic determination. Why is that?

I'm not Jewish. I've just studied enough history to know that "money-changers" is frequently been used as a codeword for "Jew." Sort of like "neocon."

And when have I ever said that people should put their ethnicity behind them?

Good grief! I see that John is doing his Jew-baiting shtick again. Why don't you go out in your front yard and eat some dirt, you pellagra-ridden hick?

I doubt candidate Eaves was thinking "Jew" when he used the phrase "money changers." More likely he was simply employing a relatively well known Bible verse as a campaign lever. In this case "money changers" was supposed to mean anyone in government who's focus was on money -- either pork or graft. That would align itself with his use of Matthew 6:24.

Very interesting....

Haley Barbour won. Given that he's being called a "business Republican" here, does this mean the "money-changers" won a round? I am presuming that Don is right and the religious aspect is not there.


Actually, John Moser is right about that term, but maybe that meaning was not intended by Eaves. I don't see it in the piece given.

Kate,

Barbour was an effective incumbent who handled the Katrina aftermath particularly well, especially by comparison with the folks next door and in D.C. Even the Baptists in Mississippi know and cherish competent government, when they see it. And Barbour apparently is far from being utterly inimical to their concerns.

With respect to the religious angle Eaves was employing ... I have a sense -- utterly unprovable -- that people do not like overtly religious people. Even religious people don't care for overtly religious people, particularly when it appears they're using the faith for personal gain.

I'm reminded of a quote by Dwight Moody, which I'll paraphrase here: "A candle doesn't have to announce that it is shining. It just shines." So it is with one who proclaims their own righteousness ... it is better to shut up and just be righteous rather than talk about being so.

And of course talking about being righteous while exhibiting all the behaviors of an unrighteous person is just inviting trouble.

I have no idea whether Eaves lived up to his religious talk or not. But I have a sense that even the "Baptists in Mississippi" saw through the veneer.

Joe,


I had not forgotten Haley Barbour. It is good news for Mississippi that he won. I wish the citizens of that state joy of their election's results. I just thought it was funny to have those two terms weaving through the thread and unconnected.


Christians of all sorts know and cherish competent government. This is one reason that so many are having a hard time choosing a presidential candidate. Such social conservatives are looking for more than "social conservatism", as generally understood, in the candidates. Their social conservatism includes something like the Protestant work ethic and individual duty to commit the act of charity unencumbered by government intervention.

What Don says is true, too. Even religious people don't care for overtly religious people, particularly when it appears they're using the faith for personal gain.


I keep meaning to mention on here another issue very important to some evangelicals and that type of Christian that does not strictly fall into the realm of social conservatism. My pastor was going on about it the other day, reminding me. A member of the congregation was back from a national conference where this was a hot topic and made his report. Those folks are very concerned about Israel and are watching the candidates carefully for "the man who has a Biblical view of Israel" by which they mean they are watching to see who will protect Israel, no matter what else is happening in the world. If blogging paleo-cons think they only have to be upset about neo-cons in the matter of Israel, they have another think coming.

The talk about Eaves vs. Barbour is beside the point. Barbour is one of the GOP's most gifted politicians, and he appears to have handled job very well. He also seems to be an absolute natural in Mississippi. His overwhelming re-election was a bright spot on a bad night. Not only did we (Republicans -- this is essentially a Republican site, is it not, fellas?) lost the Virginia Senate. We also appear to have lost the Senate in Mississippi. Our party is in deep trouble. Sheer (and rather unfair) speculation about whether Mr. Eaves might understand "money changers" to mean Jews, about whether he was helped or hurt by his overt religiosity, etc., is about 97th on the list of relevant political questions right now.

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