Paine was big on thinking, not just shouting (h/t DRB62)


They’re loud, obnoxious, and usually filled with fear. All they seem to be able to do is shout, tease, and fight. Think, ponder, contemplate, discuss? Not so much. They get their kicks and their sense of worth by making others feel small and doling out pain.

I think we are seeing where too many in the GOP learned their approach to civil discourse: the schoolyard playground at recess. "Let’s get me and my five friends together, to teach that [insert appropriate epithet here] a lesson." In classroom debates, their tactics are simple: talk louder than anyone else. I’m sure there are those in the GOP that don’t share this approach, but they are apparently too frightened of the bullies themselves to speak up.

It’s kind of sad, really, watching these rightwingers trying to shut down the conversations between elected members of the Congress of the United States of America and their constituents, all in the name of patriotic dissent. It’s like calling plagiarism "research."

Shark-fu nailed it the other day:

The story is not that there are mobs set to shout down members of Congress when they attempt to hold town hall meetings during recess.

The real story is that these mobs are passionately demanding that Congress not do it’s job and threatening to replace any representative who does try to do her or his job with someone who will promise to do nothing if elected.


That ain’t Thomas Paine-ish behavior, people.

That’s some throwback pre-revolution loyalist bullshit and no amount of Lipton tea makes it good for America.

Preach it, sister.

And after a sermon like that, I’ve just got to sing. I think you know the words . . .



I'm an ordained Lutheran pastor with a passion for language, progressive politics, and the intersection of people's inner sets of ideals and beliefs (aka "faith" to many) and their political actions. I mostly comment around here, but offer a weekly post or two as well. With the role that conservative Christianity plays in the current Republican politics, I believe that progressives ignore the dynamics of religion, religious language, and religiously-inspired actions at our own peril. I am also incensed at what the TheoCons have done to the public impression of Christianity, and don't want their twisted version of it to go unchallenged in the wider world. I'm a midwesterner, now living in the Kansas City area, but also spent ten years living in the SF Bay area. I'm married to a wonderful microbiologist (she's wonderful all the way around, not just at science) and have a great little Kid, for whom I am the primary caretaker these days. I love the discussions around here, especially the combination of humor and seriousness that lets us take on incredibly tough stuff while keeping it all in perspective and treating one another with respect.

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