"How long do you have to get hit in the head before you start asking who's hitting you in the head?"

Saturday, January 28, 2006

The Fellowship, aka The Family, aka the American Taliban: The Handmaid’s Tale meets Sleeper Cell

Truth really is stranger than fiction:

“The morning I attended, Charlene, the cook, scrambled up eggs with blue tortillas, Italian sausage, red pepper, and papaya. Three women from Potomac Point, an ‘Ivanwald for girls’ across the road from The Cedars, came to help serve. They wore red lipstick and long skirts (makeup and ‘feminine’ attire were required) and had, after several months of cleaning and serving in The Cedars while the brothers worked outside, become quite unimpressed by the high-powered clientele. ‘Girls don't sit in on the breakfasts,’ one of them told me, though she said that none of them minded because it was ‘just politics.’”

But wait—there’s more:

“[Brownback] is running for president because murder is always on his mind: the abortion of what he considers fetal citizens. He speaks often and admiringly of John Brown, the abolitionist who massacred five pro-slavery settlers just north of the farm where Brownback grew up. Brown wanted to free the slaves; Brownback wants to free fetuses. He loves each and every one of them. ‘Just . . . sacred,’ he says. In January, during the confirmation of Samuel Alito for a seat on the Supreme Court, Brownback compared Roe v. Wade to the now disgraced rulings that once upheld segregation.”

[. . .]

Brownback's wife, Mary, heiress to a Midwest newspaper fortune, married Sam during her final year of law school and boasts that she has never worked outside the home. ‘Basically,’ she says, ‘I live in the kitchen.’”

[. . .]

“One of the little-known strengths of the Christian right lies in its adoption of the ‘cell’ -- the building block historically used by small but determined groups to impose their will on the majority. Seventy years ago, an evangelist named Abraham Vereide founded a network of ‘God-led’ cells comprising senators and generals, corporate executives and preachers. Vereide believed that the cells -- God's chosen, appointed to power -- could construct a Kingdom of God on earth with Washington as its capital. They would do so ‘behind the scenes,’ lest they be accused of pride or a hunger for power, and ‘beyond the din of vox populi,’ which is to say, outside the bounds of democracy. To insiders, the cells were known as the Family, or the Fellowship. To most outsiders, they were not known at all.

“‘Communists use cells as their basic structure,’ declares a confidential Fellowship document titled ‘Thoughts on a Core Group.’ ‘The mafia operates like this, and the basic unit of the Marine Corps is the four-man squad. Hitler, Lenin and many others understood the power of a small group of people.’ Under Reagan, Fellowship cells quietly arranged meetings between administration officials and leaders of Salvadoran death squads, and helped funnel military support to Siad Barre, the brutal dictator of Somalia, who belonged to a prayer cell of American senators and generals.”

[. . .]

Brownback doesn't demand that everyone believe in his God -- only that they bow down before Him.”

Okay. . .at what point should I start FREAKING OUT?!?!?


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