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Sharron Angle Is Coming for Your Pot, Booze, and Porn, But She Says You Can Keep Your Guns

A world without pot, booze, or pornography ? Many Nevadans might find that unimaginable. But not Sharron Angle. Many journalists have associated Republican Party Senate candidates Sharron Angle and Rand Paul with the Tea Party movement, which is often characterized as libertarian (a few disagree with that take.) Some of Rand Paul's views, such as his anti-war stance, do seem to fit the libertarian mold. And both candidates are strong supporters of gun rights (Angle has even hinted at armed anti-government insurrection.) But both are opposed to legalized marijuana and Sharron Angle takes things even further. During a recent interview Angle said she thinks both marijuana and alcoholic beverages should be illegal. Then there's porn. At least up into 2005 Angle was promoting, on her own SharronAngle.com web site, a Nevada anti-tax PAC called We The People whose stated goals included outlawing pornography. As the PAC's "We The People Principles" website page declared from 2003 through 2007, "Current concepts of political correctness limit freedom of speech and should be eliminated. Pornography is not freedom of speech." We The People's view of homosexuality was notable as well. As it's "Principles" page stated, "The radical homosexual movement and other groups seek to destroy the traditional family structure which is the underpinning of society." The page also railed against atheists, the ACLU, and the National Education Association. It will be difficult for Angle to claim she was unaware of the We The People PAC's positions because, as her official biography declares, "She is proud of her past chairwomanship of We the People Nevada PAC that sponsored the Property Tax Restraint Initiative." So Sharron Angle's ideological pedigree would seem to be something other than libertarian. As Adele Stan noted in an Alternet story yesterday, Rand Paul and Sharron Angle are looking more and more like peas in the theocratic pod known as Christian Reconstructionism. They're both connected to the tendency in numerous ways but as Stan notes, Sharron Angle may have Ran Paul beat. While I've reported that Paul keynoted a 2009 Minnesota Constitution Party rally (the overtly theocratic Constitution Party is closely linked to Christian Reconstructionism), as Talking Points Memo's Justin Elliot Sharron reports Sharron Angle actually was a member of the Independent American Party of Nevada - which was and is the official affiliate of the U.S. Constitution Party. As TPM uncovered, Angle only left the party for the GOP because Republican Party candidates actually get elected, while candidates run by the Constitution Party and it's affiliates almost never do. Now, according to a new Religion Dispatches story from Julie Ingersoll, U.S. Senator Jim DeMint is now raising money for Angle using the mailing list of the Christian Reconstructionist organization American Vision. In a fund raising appeal DeMint sent out to the American Vision mailing list, DeMint enthused,
The Senate Conservatives Fund has endorsed Sharron Angle in Nevada because she's a true conservative, not a rubber-stamp Republican... I have put together a plan to invest hundreds of thousands of dollars into the Nevada Senate race — along with several others like it — to achieve conservative victory. This plan includes running statewide television and radio ads, sending direct mail to targeted voters, and operating phone banks — all geared toward defeating Harry Reid in November.
What’s Christian Reconstructionism ? Well it’s a theocratic intellectual and political movement founded by the late Armenian theologian R.J. Rushdoony, and it burst onto the American political scene in 1992 with the founding of the US Taxpayers Party, later renamed the Constitution Party. Founder of the two parties Howard Phillips was a member of Rushdoony’s inner circle and called the theologian “my wise counseler” according to journalist Frederick Clarkson, a noted authority on Christian Reconstructionism. Rushdoony wanted to base American law and government on Old Testament scripture. He advocated stoning to death adulterers, women who have intercourse before marriage, active homosexuals, and people who strike or curse at their parents (the full list of miscreants who according to Rushdoony should be bashed to death with rocks is much longer than this.) Why rocks ? As Rushdoony’s son-in-law Gary North, another leading Christian Reconstructionist, put it, “There are many reasons. First, the implements of execution are available to everyone at virtually no cost.” North has described executions-by-stoning as “community projects.” R.J. Rushdoony had a number of other notable views – he was a Holocaust revisionist who claimed in his master work The Institutes of Biblical Law that less than one million Jews were killed by the Nazis during World War Two and that most of those died from cold rather than execution. According to Rushdoony, the institution of pre-Civil War slavery in America represented a step up for Africans kidnapped, shipped to America, and forced to work on cotton plantations – “The move from Africa to America was a vast increase of freedom for the Negro, materially and spiritually as well as personally.” But slavery was a net negative for the South according to Rushdoony, who wrote, “Only a minority of the slaves ever worked,” thus forcing slave owners to hire hard-working whites to pick up the slack, claimed the Reconstructionist titan. As Rushdoony wrote in Politics of Guilt and Pity (Fairfax, VA: Thoburn Press, [1970] 1978),
the white man is being systematically indoctrinated into believing that he is guilty of enslaving and abusing the Negro. Granted that some Negroes were mistreated as slaves, the fact still remains that nowhere in all history or in the world today has the Negro been better off. The life expectancy of the Negro increased when he was transported to America. He was not taken from freedom into slavery, but from a vicious slavery to degenerate chiefs to a generally benevolent slavery in the United States. There is not the slightest evidence that any American Negro had ever lived in a “free society” in Africa; even the idea did not exist in Africa. The move from Africa to America was a vast increase of freedom for the Negro…
Writings of the late R.J. Rushdoony, especially his monumental Institutes of Biblical Law – which sought to establish how Old Testament scripture could be implemented in American jurisprudence, have heavily influenced the evolving Christian right, and Rushdoony’s works have found a place at major evangelical right institutions such as the late Jerry Falwell’s Liberty University and Pat Robertson’s Regent University. In a 1995 interview published in the Chalcedon Report, put out by the flagship institution of the Christian Reconstructionist movement, the Chalcedon Foundation, Howard Phillips explained, "Our goal must be not merely to capture a party, or even a platform, but to install our policies in government." In April of 1996 Phillips gave a speech at a San Jose, CA Christian Reconstructionist party thrown for R.J. Rushdoony's 80th birthday during which the Constitution Party leader and founder stated, "This country has a very, very special role to play in building God’s Kingdom and restoring Christendom, in giving fulfillment to the postmillennial conclusions which have been reached by those who have been privileged to be part of the Chalcedon ministry." At the time Sharron Angle was still a member of the Independent American Party of Nevada, which ran Constitution Party candidate Howard Phillips as its official president candidate that year. In 1997 Angle left to join the Republican Party. Sharron Angle's history with the Independent American Party of Nevada, in light of the party's close affiliation with the overtly theocratic Constitution Party, raises serious questions about her candidacy given the viciously eliminationist nature of R.J. Rushdoony's writing. On page 574 of Rushdoony's Institutes of Biblical Law he described Jesus and an "executioner" of non-believers, writing,
The significance of Jesus Christ as "the faithful and true witness" is that He not only witnesses against those who are at war against God, but He also executes them. .... Jesus Christ as the witness is therefore the Lord and Judge over history. He gives witness concerning men and nations, passes sentence against them, and them proceeds to their judgment or execution. ... The cross therefore requires judgment. The false witness concerning Jesus Christ, to which all unbelievers, all apostate churchmen, and all nations and institutions which deny His sovereignty and His law-word, with one accord assent, that law requires their death (Deut. 19:16-21).
As the Constitution Party platform currently states, "The Constitution Party gratefully acknowledges the blessing of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ as Creator, Preserver and Ruler of the Universe and of these United States... This great nation was founded, not by religionists, but by Christians; not on religions but on the Gospel of Jesus Christ... The goal of the Constitution Party is to restore American jurisprudence to its Biblical foundations… The U.S. Constitution established a Republic rooted in Biblical law”
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