Perfection is impossible

From the comments:

It is amazing that on a blog called SECULAR Right we have so many people here willing to pull the lever for someone about as far from “secular” as one can imagine. Have you all devolved to the point that selecting the “R” is all that matters? JFC, there other options–third parties, write-ins or just abstaining altogether (Ms.O’Donnell would at least like the sound of that). I don’t see how anyone who even just pretends to be s secularist can vote for this extremely silly person.

And another:

Well, the site is still “Secular.” Not sure about the “Right” bit anymore.

I detest people trying to tie religion into the resurgent conservative movement. It is a mistake, however, to try to paint people like D’Souza as representative of the Right in majority. That’s simply not even close to being true.

I’m reading these comments and I’m not seeing a lot of conservatism. Looks more like a typical raving moonbat thread over at DU, to me.

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37 Responses to Perfection is impossible

  1. Mark says:

    There is perfection, and then there is Christine O’Donnell. I realize the perfect is the enemy of the good, but the blatantly moronic is the enemy of all.

  2. Polichinello says:

    She’s a vote. That’s all she’ll be, Mark. If she were running for governor, then I’d have serious reservations, as I do with Palladino.

    Bear in mind, too, that this is a special election, so she’ll be a blocking vote during what may be a “mad duck” session between the election and the swear in. A vote for Coons is, potentially, a vote for a lot of very nasty Democratic propositions, including amnesty, so, yeah, I’d vote for the “witch.” One more moron in the Senate (cf: Patty Murray) is better than another 30-60 million new neighbors.

  3. Mark says:

    Oh, I see–now we are in the “no enemies to the right” mode, at least for legislative seats. Great.

    Well, that certainly eliminates any need for thinking, judgment or those kinds of nasty things. Just so long as they are anti-Obama, they deserve our support.

    But then again if I was genuinely fearing the imminent arrival of 60 million new Americans, I’d guess I could rationalize away O’Donnell, too. Or not.

    And Mr. Hume–do you still want to mock my suggestion that many here have now gladly jettisoned “secular”? Apparently Obama Derangement Syndrome, of which Ms. MacDonald has so recently and eloquently written here, is leading many to make common cause with the most blatantly anti-secular forces in our nation. Do you need any more examples past Ms. O’Donnell?

  4. Polichinello says:

    Mark, I suspect that you’re just looking for an excuse to troll, but I’ll engage you for the moment. Life has trade-offs. The trade off here is having to accept the stupidity of one Senator on some issues that she won’t be able to do jack about (again, one senator*) for a limited time in order to potentially block a lot of costly and damaging legislation from the other side.

    Really, for someone who accuses others of “not thinking”, you seem awful eager to throw down you’re own unquestioning orthodoxies and no-brains-required litmus tests. All you’ve basically done here and on the other thread is point fingers and splutter. It’s not very convincing.

    *–One freshman senator out of 100 in a body that makes up half of one out of three branches of the federal government. If she’s somehow elected in Delaware (not likely, even this year), it’s very unlikely she’ll survive 2016. So, she’s not the apocalypse, and she’ll be useful in blocking the Democrats between Nov 3 and Jan 20.

  5. Polichinello says:

    In my asterisked note, I said O’Donnell wouldn’t survive 2016’s election. She’d really be up for re-election in 2014, as she’d be finishing off Joe Biden’s last term, so her relevance is even further diminished.

  6. John says:

    Yes, the site is called secular right, so we are both.

    That means, if someone is running for Senator, I will prefer a religious conservative to an atheist liberal. If someone is running for the Religion Officer on a school board (if there was such a position), I will prefer the atheist liberal.

  7. Susan says:

    An acquaintance of mine, who became a Socialist in middle age, once said of Teddy Kennedy that “he may be an idiot, but he’s MY idiot.”

    I suppose the same principal applies to O’Donnell, if you’re a secular conservative.

  8. Jim says:

    This is Secular Right; some people seem to be looking for “Rabidly Anti-Religious Right” and came here in error.

  9. Carl S says:

    With regards to politics, I prioritize right over secular. Liberal progressives simply represent a much greater threat, as clearly demonstrated by the last two years.

  10. Mark says:

    And there is to be no consequence for the GOP nominating thess types? You are going to simply pull the lever, no matter what, because of the big “R” next to their name? I mean if you can’t draw a line at O’Donnell, it is hard to see where you will ever do so.

    This sounds like a great way to insure people like yourselves will never be taken into consideration by the GOP. You are saying, in effect, please take me and my vote for granted. I am so afraid of the Obamas of the world, I’ll just do whatever your say. And this is exactly what I meant by dispensing with thought–your terror of the Obamaites is such that you really don’t care whom you vote for, so long as as they have requisite hatred of your political opponents. This is reaction, not thought.

    Self-marginalization, thy name is “Secular Right”.

  11. Mark says:

    Forgive my typos above. The brain-finger nexus is sorely lacking in my skill set.

  12. Susan says:

    Mark, it may be a decision between the lesser of two evils, or the evil of two lessers. Don’t make more the Delaware race than it is. It’s not as if the only candidates who’ve won Republican primaries are Christine’s coven members.

  13. Polichinello says:

    And there is to be no consequence for the GOP nominating thess types?

    So you want us to cut off our nose to spite our face?

    That’s what you’re saying. If this wasn’t a special election in the face of a potentially dangerous lame duck session, then, yes, we could talk about inflicting “lessons.”

    This is reaction, not thought.

    At the cost of getting non-secular here, “Physician, heal thyself.” Little Christy O says some things you find oh so icky, and you want us to reflexively toss a critical election. Now THAT’s reaction.

    At any rate, you know very well that you’re doing nothing more than savaging a straw man of your own construction. I’ve given you another race where I simply won’t support the R because the consequences there merit rejection. We can come up with a number of other cases, too. So this accusation of unthinking reaction won’t hold up.

  14. Carl S says:

    It’s politics. You support your preferred candidate in the primary, but the party candidate in the general election.

    If you don’t, you wind up with Obamacare, Government Motors, and a $1.5 trillion deficit.

  15. CONSVLTVS says:

    Politics is an old arena, and compromise is part of the rule set. We are not the first people to find our political life less than ideal. The Roman lawyer and senator Cicero once remarked about an idealistic colleague, “He thinks he’s living in Plato’s Republic rather than the cesspool of Romulus.”

    Yes, there are limits to compromise. But idealistic refusal to face facts is a young man’s luxury.

  16. panglos says:

    I imagine that one can be a devotee of SR and at the same time have deep religious convictions – give unto Ceasar what is Ceasar and all that (Who said that?)

  17. Mark says:

    Again, I ask you–if you can’t draw a line at O’Donnell, what exactly would it take? In the thread from which my comment was excerpted, I said I’ve voted for plenty of religious folks. Hell, in 2008 I changed (holding my nose) from No Party Affiliation to the Big R so I could vote in the primary for Ron Paul, a born-again Christian. This fall, I will be voting for Marco Rubio. And so on.

    But the distinct message I am getting is that, at least in a general election, the commenters above would vote for any religious crazy right now, just so long as they are sufficiently anti-Obama. This pretty much proves my point that the “secular” component of “Secular Right” is either dead or insignificant for them.

    And no one ever addressed my Scientologist example in the other thread. Really, are there are self-proclaimed secularists who could vote for a Scientologist? If so, whatever does the term “secularist” mean nowadays?

  18. Cephus says:

    If you’re going to use “religious belief” as your criteria, then don’t expect to be voting very often because we live in a country where 80-85% of the population claims to be Christian. You simply cannot rationally use religious belief to determine your vote, you have to vote for who you think will do the best job out of the available candidates. I’m secular in the sense that I want my politicians being able to separate their silly beliefs from their public service. I can’t rationally expect them to have no religious beliefs whatsoever.

  19. Polichinello says:

    Again, I ask you–if you can’t draw a line at O’Donnell, what exactly would it take?

    How exactly is O’Donnell’s religious belief “over the line”? I don’t see that. She worked as a commentator for a social policy institute, so she said a lot of quoteable and frankly silly things in that capacity, but I haven’t seen any policy statements on her part that make her exceptionally bad. Religion-wise, she’s no more “theocratic” than Ron Paul, whom you voted for. He’d turn over questions like abortion and prayer in school to local authorities.

    Again, we’re not talking just any general election, Mark. I don’t think you’ve grasped that. She is a potential blocking vote in a critical lame duck session that could explode government growth and drastically change our country’s demographics. That will affect me where I live. O’Donnell’s views on jacking off, not so much. I just don’t see how I could willingly accept her opponent in these circumstances.

  20. Susan says:

    Mark, O’Donnell is an anomaly. She’s in no way representative of the candidates for office from other states, and I’m not speaking just of her denunciation of masturbation or the fact that she’s spent most of her adult life unemployed, as far as I can tell. What it boils down to is this: Will you support a yo-yo who’ll vote with you, or a non-yo-yo who’ll vote against you? That’s practical politics, not an indication that secular conservatives–or conservatives in general–are going to start madly foraging for space cadets to run for office.

  21. Carl S says:

    “But the distinct message I am getting is that, at least in a general election, the commenters above would vote for any religious crazy right now, just so long as they are sufficiently anti-Obama.”

    Could you tell me which commenters have said anything about a candidate being “sufficiently anti-Obama”? Except for you, of course.

  22. Polichinello says:

    …I’m not speaking just of her denunciation of masturbation or the fact that she’s spent most of her adult life unemployed.

    Her onanistic comments aren’t that bad in context. She was being asked about a government program that was pushing masturbation as an alternative to sex to decrease STD’s and unwanted pregnancy (remember Jocelyn Elders?). She pointed out, correctly, that such a use of taxpayer money would conflict with the moral beliefs of Catholics, and she correctly cited the biblical warrant for that belief. It’s funny, but she’s being ridiculed for the one thing she got sort of right.

    As for her lack of work, well, that IS the big objection. She’s a professional talk show guest, as far as I can tell. Certainly not who I’d want in a governor’s chair, but for a Senate seat, she’s still better than Coons.

  23. Susan says:

    Polichinello, as far as I can recall, she said that masturbation involves lust, which is true, and that lust equals adultery, which the Bible doesn’t, again as far as I can recall, say. It seems(to me)that she confused/conflated Jimmy Carter’s famous comment about committing adultery in his heart by looking lustfully at another woman with the Biblical proscription against spilling one’s seed on the ground. No big deal, but it’s an interesting minor illustration of her rather tangled thought processes.

    The larger point, I suppose, comes back to her lack of work history, or any real accomplishment in her life. The silly comments she made years ago would be more difficult to use against her if she had a record of achievement to offset them. But has the woman actually ever done anything, other than sue the place that briefly employed her for gender discrimination?

  24. John says:

    “Really, are there are self-proclaimed secularists who could vote for a Scientologist? If so, whatever does the term “secularist” mean nowadays?”

    I would. I would also vote for a Buddhist, Lutheran, Muslim, Wiccan, ect. if they were conservative. That’s part of what a secularist does: he doesn’t impose a religious test on his vote.

    I believe religion should be kept out of government. However, I also believe that taxes should be low, we should have a missile-defense program, that we should do away with affirmative action, ect. If I’m voting for a candidate, I’m going to take all their views into account. If I have to choose between someone who wants to nationalize health care versus someone who wants to ban stores selling beer on Sundays, then I have to decide which is the bigger threat to my freedom. And my freedom is under far greater threat from people like Obama than people like O’Donnell.

  25. Panglos says:


    She was better than that
    The masturbation comment was in response to a program thesis that masturbation was a solution to the aids crisis and she was the selected foil to that

    I wish she had not only ridiculed that but also the real cause – male homo anal sex

  26. Mark,

    Let me offer some views of the Christian Right which do not fit with the picture the Left paints which you seem to buy off on:

    1) The Christian Right threatens very few rights. Beyond the attempt to criminalize abortion they seem to have few goals that would cut into our rights. The debate over abortion (and embryonic stem cells) really amounts to an argument about what’s a rights-possessing being. The Christian Right actually wants to extend the definition of a rights-possessing being. While you might disagree on the definition of rights-possessing being this is hardly a push to put religion ahead of rights.

    2) The Christian Right has several elements, not all of which are opposed to teaching about evolution. For example, right wing Catholics mostly do not oppose teaching of evolution.

    3) The right wing Christians in America are not, with rare exceptions, especially theocratic. They are more reacting to the welfare state, being forced to subsidize lifestyles they do not approve of, and having their right of free association undermined.

    As for Secular Right: It is two words. The combination makes up a minority of people in America. As a minority we’ve got to bargain with other factions. Depending on where your values lie you might be more secular than right or more right than secular. Just because someone else in the Secular Right disagrees with you on how to do those trade-offs does not mean they are idiots or fools.

    I am skeptical of the view that 110-115 IQ Christian female politicians (e.g. Sarah Palin) are a great threat to our freedom. Such women I meet in real life are not. They can believe, er, odd things. But they are not revolutionary and I think generally accept and like the idea of a free society.

  27. Anthony says:


    She’s probably referring to this:

    “But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart. If your right eye causes you to sin, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell.”

    (Reference: Matthew 5:27, which is quoting Jesus Christ, not Jimmy Carter.)

  28. Susan says:

    Yes, Anthony, Carter was indeed quoting Matthew–though I always wondered why Carter felt the need to share this information with us. My point was that O’Donnell seemed to be equating lust and masturbation with adultery, and let’s face it, it’s hard for most fourteen-year-old boys to commit adultery. But no matter. As I said, it’s her lack of a resume that’s more disturbing than her Biblical exegesis.

  29. cynthia curran says:

    Well, I think there is some hope. Either the Democratic party might be force to leave the tradional left, since moderate Dems are now in California planning on voting for Fiorna and Whitman. Granted, I still think that Boxer and Brown. Also, blue collar Democractics in states like Pa and Wisconian are voting more Republican. There still pro-life or anti-gay marriage but less so than the South. The Democratics kick out the social conservative-liberal economic Democratics after Jimmy Carter, and they went to the Republician Pary with Ronald Reagan, it takes about a generation to changed things.

  30. Anthony says:

    @Susan “My point was that O’Donnell seemed to be equating lust and masturbation with adultery”

    I think the response is that J.C. was equating lust with adultery … no?

    It seems like a serious interpretation of Matthew 5. I don’t understand what the problem is with O’Donnell taking it, except that it’s out of step with the fashion of contemporary (liberal) America.

  31. Eugene says:

    The problem is that this blog is now American Centre. The right has gone crazy, and moved the goalposts. You can believe in property rights, capitalism, freedom of choice, hate communism and the modern cultural left, but most of the commentators here have nothing in common with the modern religious right. ( And they are more populists than believers in the free market, or freedom of speech anyway).

    So change the title and feel free to piss on O’Donnell.

  32. Cass says:

    Simply put-we need to choose candidates who are fiscally conservative. The social issues can be dealt with later.

  33. Katharine says:

    Reading this while having stumbled on the blog, I feel compelled to comment, as an atheist liberal, especially one in science:

    What would you rather have:

    1) A country where taxes are high, but where your daughter can safely get an abortion, where your gay child can marry their partner and receive the same benefits and privileges as heterosexual marriages, where you are not seen by your government as a second-class citizen, and where basic programs such as those that fund your Medicare and Social Security, scientific research (many extreme social conservatives have thought about doing away with government money for scientific research, which is one of the few things which keeps civilization forging ahead), where you don’t have to pay for emergency services such as ambulance and fire and police service, and so on


    2) A country where you are taxed virtually nothing, but not only do you have to pay for things that you take for granted such as road use and emergency services, but your daughter if she has an unplanned pregnancy must either have a hazardous back-alley coat-hanger abortion or have her life derailed, your gay child is discriminated against publicly and possibly will be affected in terms of a job (some conservatives even advocate death penalties), your secularness makes you a second-class citizen, and the country falls behind severely not only in the quality of its students but technological and scientific advancement all but grinds to a halt?

    The economy has different needs at different times. One’s basic civil rights should be inalienable.

    That you are willing to give them up I find ludicrous.

  34. Katharine says:

    And the situation regarding the encroachment of antisecularism, if you do an even cursory reading of the websites of the people who advocate it and the websites of people who keep an eye on it to make sure it does not progress, is considerably more dire than you think.

  35. Tatiana says:

    Katharine Christians and conservatives are not the theocrats that your teachers or the media has portrayed them. You’re the one with the problem. Creating this boogeyman and saying the same talking points that Anne Rice, etc have heard time and time again. Why is that liberalism is seen as tolerant, ‘modern’, etc and we are cast as monsters? Do you really, truly believe that we will create some ‘Christian’ Theocracy? That making or keeping one man and one woman the standard is bigoted, hateful, etc? Why don’t homosexuals create their own institution? Oh wait I forgot. Christians are hypocritical freaks whom have high divorce rates and are sex-addicted and then somehow they are gay while being ‘anti-gay’ but then if marriage is outdated and disposable why not destroy marriage instead of going after same-sex marriage/gay marriage/’marriage equality’ making marriage some outdated disposable progressive human rights struggle? Second-class citizen? Do you push for affirmative action, equality and social justice? Social Security and Medicare is hurt less and works better when it is privatized. Extreme social conservatives? What have you been smoking? Getting away funding for scientific research? Nonsense. Have you been reading Richard Dawkins, Christopher Hitchens, etc btw? Katharine no it is not more dire than you think. Leftists such as yourself are full of insanity creating this theocratic conservative Christian boogeyman with the aid of the media, academic institutions and the few Christians that fit your stereotypes.

  36. Tatiana says:

    Sorry if I was a tad off or didn’t make my arguments coherent SecularRight. I’m just sick and tired of people like Katharine and their caricatures.

  37. Mark says:

    Time for the O’Donnell apologists to surface again, I guess.

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