Thursday, June 26, 2008

Bible thump makes a big thud

James Dobson, the morality mullah who has spent decades fighting to enshrine a narrow version of Christian fundamentalism in American government, has staged a political hit job on Barack Obama, accusing the Illinois senator of "deliberately distorting the traditional understanding of the Bible to fit his own world-view, his own confused theology," and appealing to the "lowest common denominator of morality."

The attack - a response to a speech Obama gave before a Christian group in June 2006 - got maximum attention: Dobson, an old hand at cranking up the right-wing echo chamber through his Focus on the Family lobbying group, released his remarks to The Associated Press in advance and broadcast them on his nationally syndicated radio show, ensuring a tidal wave of press coverage.

Dobson's diatribe was a calculated attempt to rekindle the culture wars, summon the conservative faithful to the barricades and signal to the nation's political class - including politicians, the big-money donors and the press - that Dobson and other fundamentalists intend to be players in the presidential contest.

But so far, the attack seems to have backfired: Obama issued a strong response, and one supporter quickly created a Web site,, that quotes Old Testament prophets to hit back at Dobson.

After years of being snookered by the religious right in one contest after another, it seems the Dems have finally figured out how to respond when the Dobsons of the world try to paint them as faithless or anti-religious...........

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