The Post excerpt provides no specific examples of the radical secularists' conspiracy to de-Godify the public sphere, but in reading the entire text (yes, I went into the pendulous belly of the beast for you, you ungrateful heathens), we see that Newt does indeed provide salient -- nay, mortifying -- examples:
He forgot the godless school in San Francisco which invited Ozzy Osbourne to chant the national anthem backwards from Enochian text. People, won't you see that there's a crisis afoot (or ahoof)?
Let's be honest for a second here. Every time Newt says "religious" he means "Christian evangelical fundamentalism, or some reliable offshoot thereof", and every time he says "radical secularist", he means everyone else. There's not even the pretense of intellectual honesty here; a couple of out-of-context stories that are most likely policy issues, and the quixotic effort to return the
I think it's bullshit that a kid couldn't read a story he liked from the Bible; it's also bullshit to suspend a TA for wearing a cross. But every school board in every district in the country has to deal with the usual coterie of whinging helicopter parents, who are invariably precious about their own pet concerns, but couldn't give two shits about analogous situations, such as, say, a Muslim TA who wanted to wear some sort of identifying piece of clothing, or a student who wanted to read a passage from the Qu'ran (or, for that matter, The Satanic Bible).
So many school boards have just said the hell with it, realized that religion is an all-or-nothing proposition, and that it's not worth the trouble to deal with any of them. That makes sense. Many people -- many of them atheists and "radical secularists" -- have proferred the notion of comparative religions classes in school to give everyone an out. The school boards are absolved from having to cater to the usual cage-rattlers, and the kids are getting their recommended daily allowance of Jesus -- and Mohammed, and Buddha, and Shiva, and all the rest.
This is where their bluff is called, where the disingenuous contrivances of pimps like Newt are exposed. Their plaints of "religion" are quickly identified as their religion, the others being consigned to a pro-forma acknowledgement of fake ecumenicism, a cheap exercise in holding one's nose, secure in the inherent superiority of one's own faith.
And just because that's pretty much a "no shit, Sherlock" observation doesn't mean it doesn't bear reiterating. The Post article merely stenographs the most sound-bark-ready quotes from Gingrich's speech, uncritically, with no real context provided to demonstrate depth (or lack of) in his assertions. He's nuts; there's exactly one person in the entirety of the public face of the U.S. federal government that doesn't profess to be a person of faith. The people at the state and local levels tend to be, shall we say, even more strident, even less grounded in empirical reality. There is not a preponderance of policy-makers who are at odds with Gingrich's invisible friend, unfortunately.
What it really comes down to -- and Gingrich knows this -- is not a conflict between "the righteous" and the dogmatic "radical secularists" hijacking Jeebus from the public square. It's a conflict between grown-ups and children; people who acknowledge and are fine with people living their spiritual beliefs in their private lives (and even to a reasonable extent in their public lives), and people who think that since God is an American, it's not just their right but their duty to impose their personal beliefs on every other American -- and it's always, always a one-way street. Heathen religions need not apply.
More from the silly, hapless Post article:
Bullshit. More than any other single political figure of the last generation, G. Diddy has made enormous strides in dumbing down the process, understanding intellectually and intuitively that language is key to message control and discipline, far more so than the message itself. This has served to further dumb down the process, turning it into a prolonged kabuki of limbic catch-phrases and key words.
Instead of encouraging yahoos to think or (god forbid) read a book not pumped out by the winger welfare industry, the idea is simply to figure out what motivates them to action. Whether that action is stimulated by right intent or thoughtful discourse is not only incidental, it's actually counter-productive. If people actually took a couple seconds to think, they wouldn't give self-evident clowns like Newt, Rush, Coulter, or the rest of them their hard-earned time and money. Nobody knows this better than the carnies themselves.
There are literally dozens of words listed, designed and tested to stimulate specifically positive or negative reactions. Check 'em out.
And finally, whatever one's opinion about personal morality, one would at least think or hope that a serial adulterer, a sanctimonious hypocrite who has treated the women in his life execrably, would either be completely repudiated by the self-described guardians of purity and morality in the midst of an eeeevil secular world, or he'd at least not have the pure fucking gall to lecture to anyone about morality. As always, that's just too much to hope for, especially when it's so easy, so tempting to just wrap yourself in the flag, regurgitate a couple of homilies, and shake your fist at the unwashed heathens all around you.
Pimps come in all shapes, sizes, and colors. Just because he's not driving an Escalade with spinner rims or wearing a giant clock around his neck, doesn't make Gingrich any less of a pure street-corner hustler.
Awwwww, yeahhhhh, boyeeeee!!!