Monday, April 06, 2015

The Keys To His Kingdom


The Easter Season, Michael Harris writes, is a good time to consider whether or not Stephen Harper actually practises the religion he professes. There is, for instance, the Christian prescription about the treatment of one's neighbours:

Jesus could spend a profitable moment or two with Steve on the notion of sharing. For example, it’s not necessarily a good thing for the country’s gross domestic product to go up if all the growth goes to the same small number of people. It must be clearly explained to Steve that income-splitting for the wealthiest 15 per cent of the population is not the way to feed the multitudes with five loaves of bread and two small fishes. Christians share; they don’t hoard.

Jesus might remind Steve that Christians are supposed to love their neighbours, not make them get visas to visit our backyard. And even if Tom Flanagan was right when he said that you wouldn’t want Steve for a neighbour, Jesus should point out that there is still time for a conversion on the road to Damascus — even if you’re in a fighter jet. Christians can always ask forgiveness and change their ways.

And while he was at it, Jesus might review a few of the commandments with Steve -- particularly the one that deals with truth telling:

Then there’s the prohibition against what is variously called ‘lying’ or ‘bearing false witness’. Jesus would have to set aside a whole afternoon with Steve on this one. He would have to explain that there is a difference between being a ‘creationist’ in the counter-Darwinian sense and making stuff up to suit yourself that isn’t true.

And when this government lies — as it did on the true costs of the F-35, the real impact of closing Veterans Centres and its empty call for lasting ceasefires in the Middle East — Jesus would have to explain that remorse is part of the process of expiation and forgiveness. Steve would have to do an Imitation of Rob, so to speak, and choke out the words, “I’m sorry,” at a press conference or ten.
A good place for Jesus to demonstrate the kind of stretchers Steve shouldn’t tell anymore would be the impact of his corporate tax cuts. The PM said with a straight face that by cutting corporate taxes government actually got more revenues. (Same lopsided logic he gave veterans: fewer offices and personnel, better service.)

Jesus, of course, warned his listeners that he who was without sin should cast the first stone. So perhaps this meditation is a bit unfair. On the other hand, it's precisely this kind of meditation Canadians should engage in before they decide whether or not to revoke the keys to Mr. Harper's kingdom.


Toby said...

I sent Harris' essay to my Conservative MP. I hope he can read.

Owen Gray said...

Let's hope he can read, Toby. Some of Harper's folks appear to be unable to do that.

Scotian said...

Sadly, I've learned a long time since that many that most profess to be good Christians tend not to be despite their claims, and that many who follow Christs teachings the best in day to day life aren't necessarily even Christians or even necessarily religious at all. One of my few consolations in life these days is looking at those that profess to be Christians yet whose actions clearly contravene the most basic truths that Christ taught is that if there really is a Christian afterlife for judgment then these people are in for very nasty surprises when they find out that their messages of greed, intolerance and hatred in Gods/Christs Name is what condemns them to Hell. I'm not going to get into my own beliefs on such except to say that I truly believe that if there is truth to that concept then it is the essence which will matter more in such judging than the form, at least by any reading of the nature of the process as defined by the teachings of Jesus Christ in his New Testament (which as a once devout Catholic altarboy who had considered the Priesthood for a time is not something I am entirely unfamiliar with).

There is a reason (more than one to be truthful) why I've long made the point that while I am a man of deep faith I am also utterly irreligious.

As to any impact on those within the CPC who profess such convictions from Harper on down, they are already too far lost in their own spiritual corruption to ever understand the basic truth that they betray while claiming to be the true devotees of. I've long since stopped bothering trying to point this out to such, their minds are already so deeply programmed against such that unless it comes from a source they themselves already find unimpeachable it only serves to reinforce their warped perspectives and increase their sense of persecution.

Owen Gray said...

Unfortunately, those who profess to be Christ's followers don't have a stellar record -- from the Crusades on down, Scotian.

I merely point out that -- if you judge Harper on what he does rather than what he says -- it's clear that he is neither a Christian nor an economist.

Dana said...

What is 'practiced' today is almost never christianity - call it paulanity or at worst churchanity.

The fundagelical movement that is spreading around the world by way of US based snake oil preachers and their whores is toxic to humanity.

The world would be much better off without them.

In point of fact the world would be much better off without the entire poisonous miasma of religion - full stop.

I'm a committed polyatheist. There are hundreds of gods I don't believe in.

lungta said...

i've always gone with the some 120 edicts in the bible to "feed the poor", something that always gets neglected.
"what must i do master to enter the kindom of heaven?"
"sell all that you have and give to the poor and follow me"...
looking forward to see how "those that are first will be last, and the last will be first" plays out too

the salamander said...

.. the Harper Party is the party of Situational Ethics ..
Here and there they rise up on their hind quarters
and reveal they are just.. Situational ... minus any ethics

Those occasions are intrinsically locked to all actions, speeches, denials deriving directly from Stephen Harper

There is no question.. can be no doubt.. that the gaping hole in the heart.. the absence of soul.. complete lack of courage or initiative, within the so called 'Conservatives' reflects the absence of those attributes within the PM.

Religion.. is just a posturing.. a handy bit of wardrobe.. facade. part of the act, the cover.. for a closet sociopath narcissist.. and grasping egostist control freak.. holier and smarter than thou.. smug but emotionally bankrupt..

He will take the money and run.. soon. To Geneva or Washington, London or Dubai etc.. He was never here for us.. not a westerner, not even a Canadian.. just a divisive political animal.. showing everybody how smart he is... the cost irrelevant.

Owen Gray said...

You cover all the bases with your comment, salamander. And your last paragraph is an excellent capsule comment on the man.

He is no economist -- just a divisive political animal.

Owen Gray said...

As I recall, there is an admonition in the New Testament to do things "for the least of these," lungta.

Harper doesn't do things for the folks Leona Helmsley called "the little people."

Owen Gray said...

The same folks were around in Christ's day, Dana. They were called Pharisees.

Plus ca change, plus c'est le meme chose.

Anonymous said...


Both the old and the new testaments are works of fantasy to control people and spell out what behavior was appropriate and what was not.

We only need three rules the rebellious English got it right in the American colonies.

1) Don't mess with my life.

2) Don't mess with my property.

3) Don't mess with my liberty.

And I'll give you the same in kind.

Do you have any idea how many laws are on the law books telling us what we can and cannot do?

More than you can imagine [millions]the bible was just the earliest set of laws.

That's all folks'
Mogs Moglio
I speak from my Heart my experience my emotions my will power and my spiritual side as well...