Weblog Commenting and Trackback by HaloScan.com The Dark Window: July 2004

Prepare to be horrified...

Saturday, July 31, 2004

The Dark Window: Special Weekend Edition

All Dark Window blogging for this weekend is being done over at our new European annex. Everybody's invited to stop by for homemade Rosti, warm Apfelwein, and all the Amber Pawlik and Vox Day you can eat.

I'll see you back here on Monday.


Friday, July 30, 2004

The Window Darkens Vaguely

Due to an extremely vague terror warning in effect for the State of California, I decided to pull a Dick Cheney and spend most of my evening blogging at the Dark Window's new German subsidiary. But before I tell you about that, here are the terrifying "specifics" of our impending terrorist attack:

The FBI warned police in New Mexico and California that it received information about possible terrorist activity in their states. However, the warning wasn't specific about particular targets or a method of attack, a federal law enforcement official said Thursday.

So basically they're saying they don't really know anything. This is why I'm hiding in Seb's underground bunker.

The FBI decided to pass along the threat information but warned that it was considered unsubstantiated and uncorroborated, said the official, who spoke only on condition of anonymity.

Let me get this straight...Not only is the threat extremely vague, but it's also unsubstantiated. In other words, sometime between now and the end of my life, something bad could happen in California that may or may not be caused by terrorists.

Thank God for Tom Ridge and the Department of Homeland Security. It makes me feel safe just knowing they're there.

Since we're all traitors here in California anyway, let's see what they're doing over in New Mexico.

Law enforcement agencies were being asked "to be extremely vigilant ... report anything that seems to be peculiar," Olson said.

However, no one was put on heightened alert and the state did not activate its Emergency Operations Center, he said.

Aha. So they're doing nothing too.

The vague warning was distributed to authorities in California, New Mexico and some other Western states that the federal law enforcement official did not identify.

Well, at least we're not the only ones living in vague fear tonight. It's comforting to know that lots of other unnamed people may or may not be living in vague fear of something that may or may not have anything to do with anything on a day that may or may not be today.

Anyway, if you're as terrified about all this as I am, I invite you to come on over to Stuttgart where you can learn about Tom DeLay's new bill that would officially change the name of our country to the United States of McDonald's.


Thursday, July 29, 2004

You Can't Spell Hellishly Good Economy Without Hell

The award-winning writers over at World Net Daily have a new article up called Belief in hell makes economy sizzle. As you may have guessed, Joseph Farah chose to feature it up at the very top of the WND homepage.

For centuries, pastors have preached the concept of hell fire to try to keep believers' behavior in check.

Now, according to a report by the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, it's possible belief in a blazing afterlife punishment is the reason some national economies sizzle more than others.

It's also possible that World Net Daily puts the "loon" in "loony."

Using figures from the United Nations Human Development Report 2003 and 1990-1993 World Values Survey, U.S. residents have the world's highest income at $34,320, and 71 percent of citizens say they believe in hell.

I'm having a hard time imagining a more convincing causal link.

Ireland, which ranks fourth in numbers of hell believers at 53 percent, had the second-highest income, at $32,410 per capita.

But then there it is.

But the report also shows the country with the highest percentage of hell believers – Turkey, at 85 percent – had one of the lowest incomes on the list: $5,890.

Do you think this might shed some doubt on the credibility of these bizarre assertions?

Who cares! This is World Net Daily after all! You know, the highly-respected conservative news source that so prominently featured an article about an Iranian woman giving birth to a frog.

So remember...Next time you hear a Wing Nut complaining that the media is too liberal (*cough* Vox), this is the kind of thing he'd prefer instead.

And some countries which have virtually the same amount of believers in flames after death show great disparities in wealth.

From now on, I'm going to start referring to World Net Daily readers as "believers in flames after death."

For instance, France, Hungary and Russia have between 16 and 17 percent of their populations believing in hell, but the typical Parisian's income is about twice that of someone from Budapest, and more than three times that of a Moscow resident.

Yeah, that must just be an anomaly. Everybody knows God hates the French.

While the Federal Reserve report focused on the concept of hell, there was no mention of God in the analysis.

The dumb thing is that there actually was mention of God in the analysis. Well, one of the dumb things.

Tune in next time to see World Net Daily convincingly demonstrate the link between belief in "creation science" and low cholesterol.

In other news: Head on over to Sadly, No! to learn just what it is about six inches that scares Tom DeLay so much.


Wednesday, July 28, 2004

Kind Of Like When Joan Rivers Filled In For Johnny Carson

Well, it's summer and that means just one thing: wealthy bloggers like Seb No will be going on exotic vacations. Because of my friend's little trip (and because I can't afford an exotic vacation myself), I'm going to be guest-blogging over at Sadly, No! for the next ten days.

Don't worry, I'll still be blogging here as well. Of course this double effort may very well kill me. It may very well make you want to kill me too.

But just in case you're a lunatic who actually likes what you read here, you'll be able to find twice my usual number of predictably-inane jokes (both here and there) starting tomorrow. For today's blog entries, I simply direct you over to Seb's blog where I've written about Joseph Farah and his strange refusal to wear pants.

As always, thanks for stopping by. Hopefully we'll manage to have a bit of fun over the next couple of weeks.


Tuesday, July 27, 2004

The Democratic National Convention: Destroying America Since 1800

The Dark Window is dedicated to bringing you the very best examples of Convention coverage from around the world. The most obvious place to start is the Christian Broadcasting Network where Pat Robertson's "news" organization is "covering" the Democratic Convention. Actually, they’re just putting up a bunch of really negative articles that have little or nothing to do with anything that's transpiring there. No big surprise but I have to say that their lead article, the one highlighting their convention coverage (it sits atop the entire page dedicated to convention articles), may be one of the dumbest things CBN has ever written. And let's face it...That's saying something. Anyway, here's the "news."

Plymouth Rocked: The Religious Meltdown of America

Wendy Griffith
CBN News Sr. Reporter

Hooray for Wendy! If you don’t know her, she's one of CBN's top stars. Right, which is why you don't know her.

CBN.com – BOSTON - The Democratic National Convention (DNC) is being held here in historic Boston, home of many of our founding fathers, some of our nation's oldest and most prestigious universities, and of course, the Pilgrims.

That's basically the entire reference to the actual convention in this centerpiece article dedicated to the convention. Wendy's not Senior Reporter for nothing! The "news" here is that if the Pilgrims were to come back from the dead, they'd hate the Democrats. Or something like that.

Let's see what CBN's top star has to tell us about the Zombie Pilgrims:

Their hope was to create a new society based on the Bible. And, according to the Mayflower Compact, to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ far and wide. But, what would the Pilgrims think today, if they, once again, came to these shores in the summer of 2004, to find out that their home state was the first in the nation to legalize homosexual marriage?

Ooooh, not only Democrats but a bunch of homos, too. I'll bet the Zombie Pilgrims would just barf.

One local man commented, "I think they would view it the way they would view the decline of the Roman Empire, the crumbling of the culture at large, negating everything that they came here for."

I asked a local man here what he thought of this article and he commented, "I think it's pretty stupid."

What a difference nearly 400 years can make. The very site where the Pilgrims first worshipped the Lord Jesus Christ is now home to a Unitarian Universalist Church, a denomination that denies Jesus Christ as the only way to salvation. First Parish Church in Town Square is the oldest continuous congregation in New England.

That's kind of a strange thing to say. Of course 400 years will make a difference. And using that example to imply that things have recently taken a severe turn for the worst is odd in light of this fact about the First Parish Church:

It actually became a Unitarian church in 1800.

Wendy seems to be telling us that we need to return to the way life was in 1799 because ever since then, this country has been going straight to hell. To put it another way:

Number of years this country was great = 23

Number of years this country has sucked = 204

Which begs the question...Why does CBN hate America?

The other implication is that this country had its most prolonged period of greatness when we were a British colony. So bring back the King already! You think maybe Pat Robertson would like the job?

It is also interesting to note that all of the nation's Ivy League schools, including the oldest, Harvard, have Christian roots. Harvard, chartered in Boston in 1636, was established primarily to train ministers of the gospel, and to evangelize the Atlantic seaboard. A statue of John Harvard, a young minister when he came over from England, stands in Harvard Yard. For more than 200 years, Harvard remained dedicated to Christian education, but despite those deep early convictions, today, Harvard is known as one of the most liberal universities in America.

Ah, yes. The old 'liberalism and modern education are completely anti-God' refrain. If you really want to make God happy, be conservative and dumb.

So how did we get from the Pilgrims faith in Christ and their belief in the authority of Holy Scripture to where we are today?

Historian Peter Marshall explains. He said, "Well, one of the major landmarks, of course, would be 1800, because you've got the first Great Awakening that swept through all of the 13 colonies on the Atlantic seaboard. And people came to Christ just by the hundreds of thousands, and it actually created the War for Independence. The American Revolution was created by revival, but after the war was over, after the Constitution had been ratified, after America had become a nation and embarked on its own course through human history, around 1800, Harvard went Unitarian. The fervor of that first great awakening wore off and we were into Unitarianism and Universalism here in Massachusetts. And Harvard was producing your leaders in the society, generation after generation. Later, other colleges; but in the beginning, Harvard. And so Harvard going Unitarian, unhooking from the authority of Holy Scripture, is now producing people who don't think biblically anymore, so this is hugely important."

Say, didn't the Bushman go to Harvard? Is CBN saying our Boy Emperor doesn't think biblically? I'm kind of inclined to agree.

Today, America is a divided nation, torn between the Bible-based values that our Pilgrim forefathers held dear, and the 'anything goes' philosophy of the liberal agenda. Marshall says America is truly a nation in crisis.

Yeah, 'anything goes.' Like untrammeled corporate greed, invasion of sovereign nations under false pretenses, and ignoring the Geneva Convention. Damn liberal agenda.

Marshall, added, "I think we're in terrible danger in this nation, because having been founded on constitutional law and the authority of Holy Scripture, putting into practice the Biblical principles of self-government, we're now rejecting the Constitution, we're ignoring it, we're in grave danger of losing the authority of God on this nation. In fact, we're publicly rejecting it. If we do not experience nationwide revival I really deeply believe that's the only thing that can save us. What's going to happen is, we're going to decay and descend into further lawlessness. That's where we're headed without revival."

Considering that the decay started in 1800, we can at least be comforted by the fact that it's a slooooow process.

Be sure to tune in tomorrow when CBN will examine the opinions Mutant Monster Redcoats have about Bill Clinton's speech.


Nostalgic For Bill

Did you see the Big Dog's speech tonight? If not, you missed out. Certainly one of the best convention speeches I remember seeing. Even NewsMax hasn't found anything bad to say about it yet. Here's the best they've managed to come up with:

Ex-President Bill Clinton wowed the Democratic Convention crowd at Boston's Fleet Center Monday night with a carefully crafted attack on President Bush's policies.

But his wife's much ballyhooed introduction, which became a bone of contention last week when she was left off the prime-time speaker's list, fell flat.

Hehe. Wonder where they found that...

That's was the assessment from Fox News Channel's Fred Barnes, who noted the contrast between the Clintons' two speeches.

Oh. Right.

This was definitely a strong night for the Democrats - including a powerful testimony of Kerry's service in Vietnam from former swift boat crewmember Rev. David Alston, some great Gore humor, and Jimmy Carter taking the gloves off.

"What a difference these few months of extremism have made," former President Jimmy Carter said during a speech in which he never uttered the president's name.

"The United States has alienated its allies, dismayed its friends and inadvertently gratified its enemies by proclaiming a confused and disturbing strategy of pre-emptive war.

"In the world at large, we cannot lead if our leaders mislead."

Definitely looking forward to tomorrow...


Monday, July 26, 2004

USA Boys Turn Female-Like?

Well, that's the headline over at Bush Country. Joseph Grant Swank has a new column about how the UN is trying to turn our boys into sissified little girls. Or something.

Well, really it’s not only the USA but the whole wide world. You see, according to Janice Shaw Crouse of Concerned Women of America’s site, the UN females’ get-together decided that men should be more like women — globally.

Sounds like that must have been some get-together.

Now that’s not a new hit for news making. The fems have been pushing that as part of their flaky agenda for a few years now. However, for it to surface one more time is for the sane populace to whack it down one more time.

And I'm pretty sure Joe is just the fellow to do the whacking.

But for starters: the United Nations’ Commission on the Status of Women put their lenses on what men and boys are up to these days. According to Crouse, “the focus was on the role of men and boys in achieving gender equality. The bottom line was clearly stated: We must nurture boys into developing more feminine characteristics -- gentleness, compassion and tenderness, among others -- and train them away from the more typically male aggressive and competitive behaviors.”

Now when I read that, I did not find fault with Crouse for she herself goes on to find fault with the UN Commission. But as for my own brain cells, I began to feel hot in the head.

Oh, Joseph...You're such a girl! Maybe you'd better sit down before you start to swoon. I'll see if I can get Dr. Sears to bring you a glass of water. Well, after he kicks your ass for being such a pu...er, such a girl.

I don’t recall lately too many women I’ve come across at the local grocery store who are big time into gentleness, compassion and tenderness. That is particularly true if they are under 40. Now I’m 65. So when I see a female within ten years of my age — in either direction, I figure that I’ve got a chance at coming across some gentleness, compassion and tenderness.

Awww, yeah. Now we're talking. Why don't you give papa Joe a little bit of that tenderness, honey?

The other day I was walking toward the post office front door. I noted a woman in stride with me.

In other words, he was staring at her legs.

Who would open the door? That was the unuttered question in both of our heads. I could see from peripheral vision that she was close to my age. Therefore, I lifted the door latch, opened the door widely and smiled at the lady.

Joe's beginning to scare me. He sounds like the creepy 65-year-old man who lives in his mom's basement and leers at women in the grocery store. I wouldn't be surprised if he hangs out in the melon section and fondles the fruit.

She actually turned out to be just that — a lady.

Evidently, Joe had been expecting a drag queen. Kind of sheds new light on his big smile.

She smiled in return. She thanked me. She added to that thank you a good morning greeting. I responded in like kind. We then both went on our ways with a pleasantness about life that could have been otherwise if we had pulled into our hard shells for protecting our own ego turf.

Yeah, that's MY post office door, you stupid bitch!

It’s that that makes the difference. When I come upon those younger females, I surely take my chances. It’s going to be an interesting ratio come the end of my life when looking back to figure out the percentages. How many younger women were gentle, compassionate and tender toward me when I showed them courtesies? A low percentage. Today, the high percentage is brash, hard faced, chin propped in the air, brow lifted above the world scene, and a mouth that would not divulge a smile if a ten dollar bill were offered.

Sounds like somebody's angling for a lap dance! And curse these young women today who won't give 'em on demand! When Joe offers you a ten, he has a right to expect a smile (and your tongue in his ear).

It’s of course worse in some work places. Walking into the grocery store or post office is one thing. But having to work with the female bullfighters is something deadly.

Thank God we don't live in Spain or fight bulls. I hear they appease terrorists there, too.

Therefore, when the gals meet at the UN to ask for the men and boys to conform more to the women of the planet I get quite scared. Do those gals actually want the cultured, mannerly men of the continents to rise up as the fem barbarians have militarized themselves — all the while calling it feminine tenderness?

Wait, is Joseph saying that boys should become more gentle and compassionate or that they shouldn't? He seems to be saying both. I guess we could say that Joe likes to go both ways.

Somewhere along the way the UN gals have become their own cultural lag. But then again, considering the contingent we are referring to, nothing unreasonable will result as the surprise factor.

Well, that's the end of Joe's article. I don't claim to understand it. But based on Joe's success with the ladies, I did learn one thing. Next time I see a hot chick at the supermarket, I'm going to make sure I've got some tens ready!


Vox Day Bitch Slaps Bill O'Reilly

Vox has a fun new column over at World Net Daily in which he smacks down Bill O'Reilly. I'm guessing he wrote the piece because he's mad about Bill's boycott of France but please go read it yourself so you can draw your own conclusions. It's really quite enjoyable and leads me to lament the fact that Vox chooses not to use his powers for good.

Here's one of the parts I particularly enjoyed:

The cowardly "Factor" should change the name of his show. As "Fear Factor" is taken, "The Fraud Factor" would appear to be apropos.

In related news, I've learned some fascinating new personal information about Mr. Day. Many people have expressed curiosity about his wife (if you don't know the story, he got her through a Christian libertarian mail-order service) and I'd like to announce that I've finally managed to track her down.

Update: Just in case anybody missed his column, Vox decided to add a couple of swift kicks to Bill's groin over at his blog. If you like good poetry, I'm pretty sure you'll still love this.


Friday, July 23, 2004

All The Cool Kids Use Bible Armor

Okay, so it's time for another look at cutting-edge trends in End Times witnessing. Surprisingly, today's tools weren't difficult to find. In fact, they were being advertised right up there at the top of the Dark Window - on a little Blogspot banner that read "Christian T-Shirts: witnessing just got easier."

If Christian t-shirts being advertised at the Dark Window isn't ironic, I don't know what is.

Fortunately, the site didn't disappoint. For although the t-shirts themselves are fairly second-rate, the company offers a fascinating line of what they call Bible Armor.

Bible Armor is a combination of a hard shell lining, a durable cover, and reinforced stitching. It also features rustproof zippers, inside pockets and a tough web carrying handle. Its hard shell construction allows it to accommodate all of today's most popular Bible translations.

In other words, it's a book cover.

The centerpiece of their Armor line is something called Treadplate Bible Armor.

The Treadplate Bible Armor is uniquely different. It takes Bible protection to a cool new level.

And I thought Bible protection was cool before. These guys are seriously pushing the envelope! Let's take a look at their revolutionary design.

It looks like a lunch pail somebody picked up at the Home Depot.

Here's what they say about it:

Wow! This is a cool Bible cover. The Treadplate Bible Armor is pressed aluminum with a sturdy metal handle. Its unique treadplate pattern is actually made up of diamond shaped crosses.

Treadplate? So you're supposed to walk on it?

Uh, yeah. Cool.

They've also got "Hawaiian Red Bible Armor."

You know...In case you're vacationing on Maui and are worried about the natives shooting darts at it.

The embossed rubber spine and original Hawaiian print make this one of the most unique covers you'll find anywhere.

One of the most unique indeed. And guess what? If you buy over $50 worth of Bible Armor, you get a FREE BONUS GIFT!!!

That's right! A God's Property sport wallet!

You know what? I'm just going to say it. It's times like these that I'm very happy to be an agnostic.


Help Hans Zeiger Speak At The RNC Convention!

Hooray! Our old friend Hans Zeiger, World Net Daily columnist and peer of Vox Day, has been selected as a finalist to speak at this year's Republican Convention!

So mosey on over to the GOP Convention site and cast your vote for Hans. And while you're there, make sure to watch his video. It's an instant classic.

Unfortunately I'm not tech-savvy enough to make the following photo actually take you to "Hans' Video" but I couldn't pass up the opportunity to show him in his Boy Scout uniform.

Update: Seb was kind enough to make a friendly, easily-linked version of "Hans' Video" here. He also informs me that he's not going to vote for Hans but for the "totally hot" one - Sheri Valera. Ah, hell...So am I.

Special Bonus: This doesn't really have anything to do with Hans but it does have a lot to do with hilarious photos: A Stunning New Revelation.

Yet Another Important Update: Okay, the general consensus now seems to be that none of us will be voting for Hans after all. We will all be voting for the "totally hot" Sheri instead. Except...Hey, wait a minute...Seb has some late-breaking news about Sheri that may very well change everything.


I Call On Kerry To Denounce...

This is just plain funny.


Thursday, July 22, 2004

Found: Weapons of Man's Destruction!

That was the title blaring at me from the front page of NewsMax. And since NewsMax breaks stories about Weapons of Mass Destruction being found on a weekly basis, I'm guessing they probably know a lot about Man's Destruction, too. I'd better have a look.

Hey, wait a minute. It's just another one of those sneaky ads disguised as a news story. Oh well, it does sound important and ground-breaking so I guess I'll read it anyway.

Hmmmm...Let's see here...Dr. Al Sears is selling a medical newsletter in which he addresses everything we think we know about health and fitness: It's A Lot Of Bull!

Health and fitness = lot of bull...Yep, this is NewsMax alright.

Don't Believe What You've Been Told About Your Health...



He's right. I really didn't know that.

If you'll take just a few minutes of your time to read this bulletin, you'll learn more than you've probably ever known before about how a man can reverse the aging process and achieve maximum health. Without pain, and without sacrifice. And without listening to all the garbage that's put out by the mainstream health media.

I'm guessing that buying into this program depends a great deal on not "listening to all the garbage" from the mainstream health media.

What else will I learn, Doc?

How to eat fat and get thin and healthy fast.

Hey, I like the sound of this! Maybe I'll finally be able to impress S.Z. with my ultra-masculine body. And all I have to do to achieve it is to eat a bunch of fatty foods!

'For Twenty Years Fat Doctors Have Been Telling You How To Lose Weight And Get Fit. But Since 1991 Alone Obesity Is Up 61%. What Gives?

So this doesn't have anything to do with the fast-food chains that dot nearly every intersection in the country or the increasingly sedentary* lives led by most Americans? Anyway, sorry to have interrupted, Doc. Please tell me what gives.

I'll Tell You...

Dr. Sears is really good at building suspense.

So much of what the medical establishment tells you is
pure Bull

Oh. You said that already. Frankly, I'm feeling a little let down.

Modern Politically Correct Medicine Is Trying To Turn You Into A Woman!

Yeah, you said that before too. The "Politically Correct" was a nice touch this time, though.

It may sound a little strong to say it, but men are not only being 'feminized,' we're being subjected to a slow and potentially deadly 'chemical castration.'

And that chemical is called Ashcroft.

So let other people follow the crowd and starve themselves eating bibs of lettuce, bland vegetables and tofu. Let them avoid meat, stop beer and wine and the occasional shot of excellent Scotch and a fine cigar, let them spend an hour a day on the treadmill, avoid sunshine and everything else that makes life fun and pleasurable...

Yes, let them stop the occasional shot of excellent Scotch while eating bland bibs of lettuce! You and I are way cooler than that, huh, Doc?

In fact, it's very possible that with the information you're going to get today, you may now enjoy better health, conditioning, energy, and sexual vitality than you've ever had in your life.

There seem to be an awful lot of qualifiers in that sentence.

If you'll give me just ten minutes of your time, you're going to discover that most of what you've been told about what's good for you is WRONG. You're not a lab rat for health fads or politically correct flag wavers. You're a man, genetically created and programmed, and most of your natural instincts are the best thing for you.

That's good. Feeling like a lab rat for politically correct flag wavers has really been getting me down.

Now let's see what will pep me back up. What are some of the benefits of this program?

* a thin, lean abdomen

* spontaneous erections

* impressive muscularity

Those spontaneous erections could be dangerous but the rest sounds good. I wonder what Dr. Sears' secret is.

Oh, it's testosterone. Well, I guess he knows his market. And he's got a list here of who's healthiest (i.e. who has more testosterone):

* Bosses have more testosterone than their workers.

* Trial lawyers have more than tax lawyers.

* Commodity traders have higher levels than the back-office crew.

* Actors have more than ministers.

Dang! That last one puts a serious damper on my bid to become the Dark Reverend. And a commodity trader? I think I'll stick with being unhealthy, thanks all the same.

It's a vicious cycle of decreasing testosterone and increasing estrogen. You start to look and feel more like a woman but your mind, and your culture, still expect you to be a man!

Well, if you've seen Seb lately, you'd know that this part is true.

So what's it going to cost if I want all this great health?

$69.00 for a two-year subscription to his newsletter. Dr. Sears says it's a $479.00 value. And let's face it...who wouldn't want to look like this guy?

By the way...what's that weird splotch on his forehead? It looks kind of like somebody just had one of those spontaneous...

In related news: My good friend Seb, the womanly guy I was telling you about earlier, has a wonderful story about how WMD's really have been found!

* Flagrant geological error corrected per Thlayli and SocraticSilence


Some Long-Overdue Introductions

I've finally updated the list of blogs I regularly read and would like to draw your attention to the newest additions.

First off (and of special note to the White Buffalo) is an excellent and highly informative website called Nothing New Under The Sun. It's run by the delightful Bellatrys.

Second, I want to give a formal introduction to fellow Oaktown blogger Scaramouche. Not only does he have a great name, but he also has a great blog. And since he's from Oakland, you know he's cool.

And finally, I call your attention to somebody who's already a fairly familiar face here at the Dark Window. He has many identities but this, I think, is my favorite. You may not agree with much of what he writes but he's always entertaining and I'm happy to consider him a friend. Especially since he's a tacit supporter of the UN (via Arsenal, of course). I present to you The Undercover Frenchman.

So please go say hello.


Wednesday, July 21, 2004

John Kerry Is Going To Hell...AGAIN!

Last week we learned why Joseph Farah thinks Johns Kerry and Edwards are going to hell. Well, this week it's a different Joseph but he's saying pretty much the same thing.

You see, the fine folks over at Bush Country - the ones who proudly brought us Tamara Wilhite - offer a fire-and-brimstone column by a guy named Joseph Grant Swank. What we can't gather from his name we can read in his bio - which tells us that Joseph was once the:

Winner of First Prize Writing Contest which yielded a three-week guided tour of the Middle East.

You'll certainly have no doubt why after reading his latest masterpiece. It's entitled Kerry's Rosary Carrying Has To Work Harder Than It Does.

Frankly, I have no idea what that means. Even after reading the article. Anyway, let's get to it, shall we? Take it away, Joe!

Rabbit’s feet don’t work with God. Nor lucky charms. Nor rosary beads that don’t match a consecrated heart.

Somehow I have a feeling Joe's going to tell us whose heart isn't consecrated.

God looks on the heart. He sees the factual intent — whether for good or evil. He is not fooled, in other words.

Therefore, when ABC News comes forth with US Senator John Kerry carrying a rosary, prayer book and medal of St. Christopher, so what? These are mere trappings spelling hypocrisy for Kerry.

Aha! I was right! Maybe I should be writing these things...

When Christ told His own to take up the cross daily in order to follow Him, He wasn’t talking about dangling carryons that trigger lucky hoops ahead. He was talking about a commitment to holiness that would war against all that’s worldly.

Dangling carryons? Lucky hoops? Sounds like somebody's been hitting the sacramental wine again...

But back to his "point"...I wonder why Wing Nuts never consider dedicating one's life to making enormous profits via giant corporate conglomerates (usually on the backs of extremely poor people in other countries) "worldly."

Christ also told His followers that by their fruits they would be known. In other words, though Christ did not give disciples the prerogative to consign souls to heaven or hell, He did give them the right to analyze another’s life for good or bad. Their "fruits" would reveal what kind of tree was growing — a beautiful tree or a weed infested with disease on its way to shrivel and die.

So Christ says Christians will be known by fruits like Joe? Is it any wonder that church attendance is declining?

It’s the same when John Kerry tells media that practicing homosexuality is not a sin. God states in His revealed Word that practicing homosexuality is an abomination. Therefore, Kerry, rosary in pocket and prayer book in hand, has nothing going for his soul’s safety but a first-class ticket to the pit.

Hey, Joe, I thought you just told us the Bible doesn't let us consign souls to hell. Oh, well...Better do it anyway just in case!

If there’s anything truth-filled that’s coming out of this presidential campaign it’s the unabashed farce known as US Senator John F. Kerry. Day upon day, week upon week, month upon month, that fellow is given the divine chance to repent of his spiritual waywardness in order to return to the sincere Christian lifestyle.

Uh...Kerry's truth-filled? Doesn't seem to do much for your argument, man.

Though warned by his own clergy and churchly parishioners, he persists in discounting all biblical counsel for his own political opportunism. In that he, along with his spiritually rebellious wife, consign their souls to disobedience against the Eternal Judge.

I'm guessing Joe isn't a lot of fun at parties.

Rosary beads, prayer books and religious medals count for absolutely zero unless they are supported by Christian discipleship in keeping with the expectations set forth in the New Testament. John Kerry lacks on all points.

As opposed to princes of Christ-like living like Tom DeLay, Karl Rove, and the Bushman.

If you are a sincere believer reading this, add to your prayer list these two names: John F. Kerry and Teresa Heinz Kerry. That is the duty of every earnest Christian — to pray for the enemies of the cross of Christ.

A sincere believer in what? Idiocy? Lunacy?

There is a chance that their free wills will turn toward the Lord God, repent of their sins, and confess openly to the world their wrongs. Then must follow the life of a contrite follower of the Lord Jesus.

But not really a very good chance, evidently, so Joe will probably just keep saying they're headed for hell instead.


Iraqi Prison Update

Seb has a must-read update about the Iraqi prison-abuse scandal. It's not funny and it's not light but I highly recommend that you go read it. Thanks.


Tuesday, July 20, 2004

The Ketchup Wars Begin

Scott W., loyal reader, long-time friend, and inventor of the world's only Dark Window t-shirt, calls our attention to a hot new conservative product: W Ketchup. That's right, dear readers...There's finally a godly product that you can be proud to pour over your freedom fries!

W Ketchup™ is made in America, from ingredients grown in the USA.

The leading competitor not only has 57 varieties, but has 57 foreign factories as well. W Ketchup comes in one flavor: American.

Well, if the Wing Nuts want to be separated from their money in such manner, I certainly won't protest. But I should point out a couple of things about these ridiculous claims that keep surfacing.

Media Matters for America ran a great piece a couple of days ago debunking this whole myth that Heinz Ketchup is (a) outsourcing all of its production and (b) donating heavily to liberal causes.

H.J. Heinz Company is a multinational corporation with 50 affiliates operating in 200 countries, employing over 38,900 workers worldwide. While 70 percent of these employees work in factories overseas, it is critical to note, as USA Today did in an April 20 article, "About 60% of the company's sales are outside America, and the products sold in other countries are often made and marketed locally and in some cases are unique to that region." The article added, "Tomatoes for ketchup sold in the United States are grown largely in the regions surrounding the major processing plants in Ohio, Iowa and California."

W Ketchup, of course, has more damning information about Heinz.

Choose Heinz and you're supporting Teresa Heinz and her liberal causes, such as Kerry for President.

Makes a nice sound bite but is it really true? Let's go back to Media Matters:

[I]t is worth noting that, as USA Today reported, "[T]he Heinz company's political action committee gave more than $64,000 to GOP candidates [in the last six years], nearly three times the amount given to Democrats"; USA Today also reported that William R. Johnson -- the president, CEO, and chairman of the H.J. Heinz Company -- has given more than $20,000 to Republican congressional committees and candidates in the last six years. The article added that, while the Heinz company's political action committee has contributed over $5,000 to President George W. Bush's reelection campaign, it "has shunned the Kerry campaign."

Anyway, W Ketchup uses more than these bizarre assertions to sell their product. They also use St. Ron! Underneath a giant photo of President Reagan wearing a cowboy hat, they include this text:

W Ketchup would like to thank President Reagan for his selfless service to this nation.

Reagan won the Cold War, let private enterprise flourish, and most of all made Americans proud to be Americans again.

Reagan also proclaimed Ketchup a vegetable in order to make school lunches cheaper. A more fitting tribute I cannot imagine.

In addition to the Reagan tribute, the W Ketchup site has a special section for reader comments and, not surprisingly, there are many like this one:

Thank you for giving us a delicious American alternative to the standard Heinz Ketchup. Henry Heinz may have been a great American, but I have absolutely no interest in supporting The Kerry's anti-American causes.
— S.S., Akron, OH

Anyway, if you get a chance, go browse some of the other comments (they also include a fair amount of fun hate mail).

What I think is far more interesting than W Ketchup, though, is this article I found over at GOP USA while I was researching this piece. You see, it turns out that there's another conservative ketchup maker out there and he's mad as heck about W Ketchup trying to steal his market!

SPARTANBURG, SC (Talon News) -- An unexpected ketchup war has erupted between two companies marketing alternative versions of ketchup to conservative, Republican consumers.

Talon News reported last week on W Ketchup which actively markets its product to people who "don't support Democrats."

But in an open letter, another alternative ketchup known as Bush Country Ketchup has openly challenged W Ketchup to clarify its ideological devotion.

Wing Nut catfight. With ketchup!

"We can no longer allow W Ketchup to masquerade as a conservative condiment and continue to market itself to our fellow Republicans without answering several troubling questions that have come to light since its emergence in mid-June," remarked Bush Country Ketchup co-founder and volunteer press secretary for a Congressional candidate Patrick Spero, whose slogan is "Making sure Kerry won't ketchup to W."

I'm not really sure what to do here. You can't even parody this stuff!

Describing W Ketchup as "a nebulous company," Spero said their rival company has more in common with the campaign of Democratic presidential candidate Sen. John F. Kerry (D-MA) than President George W. Bush.

"Our mission is clear -- the reelection of President Bush and the success of the Republican Party," boasted Spero about Bush Country Ketchup. "W Ketchup appears to be trying to have it every which way, engaging in Kerry-esque flip-flopping and capitalizing on conservatives' affectionate use of President Bush's middle initial. At the same time they claim any connection with President Bush or the Republican Party is pure serendipity."

Noting that he is "not in this for money," Spero told Talon News that he is "truly afraid that good conservatives may be taken advantage of by W Ketchup, possible liberals who are enjoying a good laugh at the expense of trusting conservatives."

Hey, it sounds like maybe Spero reads the Dark Window!

Although their ketchup costs a little more than W Ketchup, Spero invites people to "judge for themselves which ketchup is truly conservative and dedicated to the President."

I don't know about you, dear readers, but I always try to choose condiments that are dedicated to the President.

And just to be fair, let's close with a quote from W Ketchup CEO, Daniel Oliver:

"Given the huge number of Americans who don't want to support Kerry/Heinz with their condiment selection, the more choices, the better," Oliver stated. "Hopefully with our combined efforts, we can ensure that in November, Teresa Heinz Kerry's G-5, the 'Flying Squirrel,' lands in the People's Republic of Taxachusetts, and not Andrews Air Force Base."

Somebody definitely sounds squirrelly*, Dan, but I'm not sure it's Kerry!

* Flagrant spelling error corrected per (who else) the inimitable Frederick.


Monday, July 19, 2004

Lucom: We'd All Be Dead If John Kerry Were President

Our old friend Wilson C. Lucom is back with an exciting new column entitled John Kerry’s Deadly Foreign Policy. It's not as goofy as some of his work but, well, it's still Lucom!

You could be dead right now from additional terrorist attacks if President Bush had followed the dangerous policy of Sen. John Kerry and continued delaying the fight against terrorism.

Really grabs you right from the start, doesn't he?

Kerry wants the United States to work through the United Nations and a coalition of nations that would include France and Germany. It should be understood by all Americans that such a coalition would not have time to succeed before terrorists regrouped and attacked again. By attacking Iraq’s Saddam Hussein, the “grandfather of all terrorists,” the president protected American citizens.

Well, not exactly. Maybe we'd better let John Kerry himself tell us what he'd do.

"Am I prepared as president to go get them before they get us if we locate them and have the sufficient intelligence? You bet I am."

And then he said this:

"I will never allow any other country to veto what we need to do and I will never allow any other institution to veto what we need to do to protect our nation."

But since Lucom's more fun if you ignore things like facts, let's continue.

According to Riadh Abdallah, a lieutenant general in Saddam's Republican Guard, "SADDAM HUSSEIN IS THE FATHER OR GRANDFATHER OF ALL TERRORISTS" (“The Connection: How al Qaeda's Collaboration with Saddam Hussein Has Endangered America,” by Stephen F. Hays, p. 93). He definitely knew.

Hey, I like that. From now on I'll be referring to Lucom as the FATHER OR GRANDFATHER OF ALL WING NUTS.

Kerry’s foreign policy is to operate only under U.N. auspices. The State Department can no longer keep ignoring the fact that many member nations of the U.N. are enemies of the United States and that the U.N. conceals the fact that these nations support or harbor terrorists. France and Germany joined the Arabs in repeatedly delaying U.N. resolutions against Iraq, giving the terrorists time to attack the U.S. on 9/11. This must not happen again.

This is one of those things that makes Lucom so much fun. It doesn't matter to him that John Kerry never said anything of the sort. What matters to him is that he assumes Kerry did.

The United States saved France twice from defeat in a war. Because the U.S. helped France when it so desperately needed help, France should be regarded as a “traitor” to the U.S. for not supporting the U.S. when it needed support. Americans should boycott French products.

Well, the gods seem to have imposed a French kissing ban upon me if that counts. As an interesting aside, David Brock has a fun update about Bill O'Reilly's Boycott of France. Turns out Bill's having a bit of trouble with the truth again.

The world must face the truth that since it was founded 58 years ago, the United Nations has failed to keep peace in the world. The Arab nations are vehemently anti-Semitic; the U.N. is also anti-Semitic but pretends it is not, and the world goes along with the pretense. Its resolutions benefit Palestine but not Israel. The U.N. should be terminated instead of wasting the billions of American dollars it spends.

That's what this boils down to. Let's "terminate" the UN.

And this leads Lucom to the "meat" of his story (most of which seems to come from stale NewsMax articles). Iraq wasn't dangerous because of WMDs. It was dangerous because of a couple of "terrorist training camps." Places like Salman Pak. And that's why the Bushman had to invade.

After 12 years, the U.S. could wait no longer to destroy the camps where terrorists were trained to kill Americans. The terrorist attacks of 9/11 occurred because these training camps had not been destroyed. Because the United Nations never tried to remove the camps, the U.N., not President Bush, is to blame for 9/11.


To protect you and thousands, if not millions, of Americans from being killed by future terrorist attacks, by terrorists trained in Iraq’s terrorist training camps, it was necessary for President Bush to attack Saddam Hussein to force him out of office and stop the training camps. Notice how the terrorist attacks on the U.S. stopped once Hussein was deposed.

Just for fun, why don't we look at Lucom's allegations in light of the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee's Assessment of Prewar Intelligence on Iraq. Several parts of the actual report have been blacked out and are represented below by [***]. If it makes it easier to read, simply replace each [***] with a Cheney-type expletive.

The CIA determined, "that at least one [***] defector[***], whose story appeared in Vanity Fair magazine, had embellished and exaggerated his access." Additionally, [***] other sources only repeated information provided by the [***] defector, and also lacked first-hand access to the information. Committee staff asked both CIA and DIA analysts whether any al-Qaida operatives or other sources have confirmed Salman Pak training allegations, and the unanimous response was that none have reported knowledge of any training. A DIA analyst told Committee staff, "The Iraqi National Congress (INC) has been pushing information for a long time about Salman Pak and training of al-Qa'ida."

Ah, yes. And we all know about the quality of intelligence provided to us by the INC [*cough* Chalabi *cough*].

But if Lucom doesn't want to trust the Senate report, even NewsMax itself conceded this back in June:

One unnamed U.S. official cited a CIA assessment first supplied to the White House in January 2003 in response to the reports, more than a year after two Iraqi defectors told the FBI that they trained radical Muslims at Salman Pak in hijacking techniques never used before the 9/11 attacks.

"The probability that the training provided at such centers, e.g. Salman Pak, was similar to that al Qaida could offer at its own camps in Afghanistan, combined with the sourcing difficulties, leads us to conclude that we need additional corroboration before we can validate that this low level basic terrorist training for al Qaida occurred in Iraq," the CIA concluded.

In light of all that, why don't we enjoy some of Lucom's inescapable logic:

These terrorist training camps were far more dangerous to you than were weapons of mass destruction. Why? Weapons of mass destruction by themselves are not dangerous; they cannot explode by themselves. Terrorists need to deliver and use them. The United States has a huge supply of weapons of mass destruction, but for 30 years – because the U.S. is not a terrorist nation – not one such weapon has been used.

That's almost as good as Lucom's assertion that if your parents had been gay, you'd never have been born.

President Bush's first and foremost duty is to protect you from being killed by terrorists. He is doing just this by fighting on Iraqi soil, where terrorists, not innocent Americans, were being killed. Bush could not wait for the terrorists to regroup and again attack America before taking protective action, which Kerry would not want him to do.

Wow. So much wrong in just one small paragraph.

Kerry would wait for the U.N. to act. If President Bush had waited and America was again attacked, he would have been impeached for not protecting you.

You should thank God that President Bush, not John Kerry, is our commander in chief.

I don't know about you, but I'm thanking God for giving us Lucom.


Friday, July 16, 2004

Why Homosexuals Are Terrorist Magnets

Yesterday we learned from Joseph Farah that people who voted against the Federal Marriage Amendment are probably going to hell. Unfortunately, the news doesn't get any better for our pink-loving friends today.

A quick trip over to Bush Country reveals that the terrorists hate us because of our gays! The ever informative Tamara Wilhite has written a new column explaining why terrorists want to kill us. At least I think that's what it's about. It gets a little confusing. And fast. Anyway, here's Tammy.

I’ve heard the liberals complaining that Republicans brought the Marriage Amendment up for a vote to divide the electorate. Excuse me? I thought we were already polarized with the Red State-Blue State maps. Perhaps forcing the Democratic Duo to actually take a side with an absolute yeah or nay vote going to give clarification to that fraction of undecided “liberal but not willing to admit it” voters that Kerry is a thin margin away from Government Mandated Free Love. Hence the vote would lead a percentage point or two of undecided folk into finally deciding once and for all on Bush.

I've read that paragraph about 8 times and I still can't make any sense of it. Better just move on.

What does this have to do with terrorism? Quite a bit. These Muhajadeen – mad Muslim Men – hate us. Their real reason is that we refuse to roll over and cry Mullah. Their stated reasons are our evil vice and our support for Israel.

Somehow I'm guessing it's slightly more complex than that. But it's Tammy's column so let's let her continue.

How does the failure of the Federal Marriage Amendment play into their hands? Not only do we allow our women to go unveiled. Not only do we allow our daughters to have sex outside of marriage. Not only do we allow abortion. Not only do we allow women equal rights. We dare to allow homosexuality to exist.

Right. If we just stopped allowing our daughters to have sex outside of marriage then we wouldn't suffer any more of these terrible attacks! Hooray or Tammy!

And hey, come to think of it, if we would just stop doing evil things like giving equal rights to women and allowing homosexuality to exist then the mean terrorists would probably go away altogether!

In Muslim countries, the punishment for homosexuality ranges from death to a long prison sentence. Mohammed’s word was for homosexuals to be executed. Not only do we allow homosexuals to exist. Not only don’t we allow them to live, we tolerate them living in the open.

First we allow the evil gays to exist. Then we don't allow them to live. Never let it be said that Tammy can't see both sides of an issue.

They can be seen in public office and public broadcasting. Now, worst of all, we are granting them equal parity in the law with heterosexual couples. If that is not giving the green light to sin, then neither is Madonna dancing around in the near nude provocative.

I always kind of figured the terrorists didn't much care for the Christian God. Now it turns out they'd leave us all alone if we just stopped sinning. Is Tammy saying the terrorists are godly Christian people? It sure sounds like it.

We don’t stop lesbians from making children. Our courts are slowing giving homosexuals equal adoption rights to children.

Yes! Curse our nation for not stopping lesbians from making children! Curse our courts for slowing giving homosexuals equal adoption rights to children!

Now we are unwilling to say that two men or two women married in a civil ceremony are not equal to the natural pairing of man to woman. We have just given the signal that we are the Sodom and Gomorrah cesspool they accuse us of being. All with Kerry and the other Democrats’ support.

So basically the terrorists hate us because we sin. And why do we sin? Because John Kerry and the Demoncrats make us!

If buses of Israeli schoolchildren die for Israel’s existence and Spanish commuters die for their government having a few hundred peacekeepers in Iraq, I wonder how big the gay target will be bombed in protest for this evil.

I'm going to say this as nicely as I can...

Tammy, honey...I know you were flattered when Rush called you up saying he was lonely. But baby, please, next time stay out of his medicine cabinet until after you've written your column.


Thursday, July 15, 2004

World Net Daily Exclusive: At Least 48 Senators Are Going To Hell

So implies our old friend Joseph Farah, the brains behind World Net Daily, in his latest column. I bet you'll never be able to guess who's going, either. Well, okay, maybe you will be able to guess...The DEMONCRATS!!!

Yesterday was a day of shame in Washington.

It was a day of shame for the U.S. Senate.

The U.S. Senate, by a vote of 50-48 – with two very prominent senators sitting it out – voted not to carry forth a constitutional amendment to define marriage as a union between one man and one woman.

At least our Presidential duo won't be going to hell. It was, after all, Kerry and Edwards who were "sitting out." Hmmm...Maybe abstinence really is the way to get into heaven (and the White House).

We are losing our country fast, and yesterday, July 14, 2004, was a day that will live in infamy.

It's the godless French, I tell you! It's no coincidence that this vote took place on Bastille Day. May God destroy the French and liberals with his mighty sword.

But back to our two Johns.

They both claim to support the "concept" of traditional marriage but not a constitutional amendment. They are lying. This was their chance to go on record. This was their chance to cast an important vote for the very building block of Western Civilization. This was their chance to differentiate themselves from those who would like to fundamentally remake our society with complete disregard for the will of the people.

How is that lying? They said they didn't support a constitutional amendment and then didn't vote for it.

They must not be rewarded for this kind of arrogance, this kind of contempt, this kind of treachery, this kind of evil.

Interestingly, using Farah's logic, Lynne Cheney would also appear to be guilty of contempt, treachery, and evil. I wonder if Dick knows. If he does, perhaps he should just tell her to f*ck off!

Here comes the really scary part, though.

I would hate to be any of those 50 senators on judgment day. They will have much to answer for.

Oh. I guess Kerry and Edwards are going to hell too.

But boy, that's tough. If you don't vote the way Joe wants you to, well, then you're probably going to wind up in hell. Let that be a lesson to you, John McCain!

But the people need to hold them accountable now – in this lifetime.

I do not exaggerate when I say the very fate of our nation rests on our ability and willingness to do so.

Sure. It's not enough that God is planning to throw them into a fiery lake. We should probably be throwing them into fiery lakes, too! If that pretty face of Mr. Edwards isn't melting soon, there's going to be hell to pay. And I mean literally!


Pat Boone Puts On His Thinking Cap...

Pat Boone, strong advocate (probably a poor choice of words) of the Federal Marriage Amendment, got an e-mail from a liberal friend and decided to respond to it publicly at NewsMax. It's too lengthy to address here tonight but there was one particular quote of Pat's I wanted to call out...

Finally, what was it the Bible said? “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people.” O, and Solomon, generally conceded to be the wisest man who ever lived wrote in Ecclesiastes 10:2 “The mind of the wise inclines to the right, the mind of the fool to the left”. And a thoughtful footnote: Can you imagine what ultra-liberals and a leftist media would do today to Harry Truman, after he dropped a couple of atom bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki? It was a horrible decision that Truman made, but history shows it ended World War II, and saved tens of thousands of lives, both American and Japanese. And today, and for many years since World War II, Japan has been a solid, democratic nation and our ally! Anybody see a possible parallel to today?

That's right, ladies and gentlemen...Want to be wise in God's eyes? Want to create a democracy in Iraq? Then NUKE THE BASTARDS ALREADY!!!


The Shorter, Sweeter NewsMax

John L. Perry, one of the goofier NewsMax opinion makers, decided to try a minimalist approach for his latest column. I reprint it below in its entirety.

Swap First Ladies?
John L. Perry
Wednesday, July 14, 2004

[Reading time: 20 seconds]

Undecided about whom to vote for for president? Simple. Just place a mental image of Laura Bush alongside that of Maria Teresa Thierstein Simoes-Ferreira Heinz-Kerry.

Then ask yourself: Do you really want to trade in America's first lady?


Boy, that was easy. Thanks, John, for another great column!


Wednesday, July 14, 2004

A National Dark Window Holiday (14 Juillet)

Like any good liberal, I will not be blogging today in order to honor France. Okay, I'm actually just tired and want to go to sleep but saying I'm honoring France should have the added benefit of riling up the Voxettes.

Fortunately, in honor of the day, L'Elysée decided to give me an official reprieve from my blogging duties. At least that's how I interpreted the following story:

La grâce présidentielle du 14 Juillet s'annonce plus généreuse qu'en 2003

Well, since I didn't even have a blog in 2003, I'll have to agree! Thanks for the pardon, Jacques! Drop by later when Jamie R. will join me in singing la Marseillaise.

Vive la France! Vive la Fenêtre Obscure!

Happy Bastille Day, everybody!


Tuesday, July 13, 2004

A Look Behind, Part II

Yesterday we looked at the brains behind the Left Behind book series and today we're going to take a look at the brawn: Jerry B. Jenkins. While Dr. Tim LaHaye came up with the idea in the first place, Jerry's the one who's done all the actual writing. And considering that he's written 12 full-length Left Behind novels and 36 Left Behind: The Kids novels in just 9 years, he's been doing quite a lot of it.

Jerry B. Jenkins is the author of the Left Behind novels, the fastest-selling fiction series ever. These books have sold more than 60 million copies since 1995. Jerry has written more than 150 books, including the Left Behind series and his book, SOON. Book 2 in the SOON trilogy, Silenced, will be released July 2004.

Wow! That's a lot of books! I'll be thrilled if I ever complete my 150th blog entry. Of course my 97 blog entries and Jerry's 150 books do share something in common: a distinct lack of quality.

On his website there's a section called FAQ. Here's one of my favorite Q's:

I'm doing a report (or helping a student work on one) for school on Jerry B. Jenkins. Do you have some detailed biographical information that would help?

Ooooh...Sounds like somebody's cheating. I wish my dad had written my reports for me! I'm curious what this biographical information will look like, though.

It shouldn’t surprise you to find out that Mr. Jenkins does a lot of reading to keep current with what works and doesn’t work in top-selling books. He also spends a great deal of time doing research online.

This is where Jerry and I part company. I'm afraid it's painfully obvious that I never bothered to keep current with what works in top-selling blogs. Of course the flip side of this is that it's also painfully obvious that Jerry is writing formulaic fiction and doesn't seem to have a lot of fresh ideas to explore in his very drawn-out books. Even his biggest fans seem to lament this (just read a sampling of the comments on his later books at Amazon for an example).

With the freedom that comes with being a bestselling author comes an enormous responsibility to keep his faith and family first as well as be a careful steward of the financial gifts God has given him. As for hobbies, Mr. Jenkins likes listening to the Beatles, Beach Boys and Bee Gees. He also loves playing racquetball and Scrabble.

Sounds like a fun guy. But I guess if you're the steward of that many financial gifts from God, you can afford not to be very interesting.

Let's take another question from the audience.

Is Glorious Appearing really the last book in the Left Behind series?
No. Absolutely not! Despite any rumors to the contrary, Glorious Appearing was not the end of the series. We're pleased to inform you that the next book, Book #13, Left Behind - The Prequel and Book #14, Final Judgment are expected to come out in 2005 and 2006.

I can kind of understand a prequel but Final Judgment? The Glorious Appearing book ended with all our heroes in heaven and all the liberals dead by the sword emanating from Jesus' mouth. What's left? Unless some of those liberals aren't really dead...

Breaking news here at the Dark Window. The title of the 14th Left Behind novel will be Final Judgment: Delano Returns. The main part of the plot will have a zombie FDR driving around in his demonic wheelchair, shooting laser beams from his glasses and casting spells on unsuspecting Christians trying to enjoy their glorified bodies. And if you suspect this will take the Left Behind series into the horror genre, you would be correct. The scariest part comes when Jerry Falwell struts around in nothing but his glorified body.

Jerry Jenkins also owns the Christian Writers Guild, which aims to train tomorrow's professional Christian writers and has nearly 2,000 members worldwide. The centerpiece of the Jerry B. Jenkins Christian Writers Guild is a brand-new, e-mail correspondence course tailored to fit the busiest lifestyle. Students enrolled in the course are personally mentored by a seasoned professional writer or editor throughout the two-year program.

Well, I am pretty busy. And if I do this via e-mail, I won't have to listen to Jerry's Bee Gees collection while we're working. I'd better check an example of Jerry's writing first, though (this is the excerpt from his latest book he chose to put on his own website):

Chaim Rosenzweig had not slept, and after only two light meals of manna, he expected to feel the fatigue. But no. The best he could calculate, this was the day. He felt the swelling anticipation in both his head and his chest. It was as if his mind raced as his heart ached for the greatest event in the history of the cosmos.

Well, I can't say I'm all that impressed with Jerry's writing but he does claim to know what works in top-selling books so maybe I'll just...whoa!...$149 to become a member?

I'm beginning to wish I had God on my side too...I could use some of those financial gifts myself!

Jerry B. Jenkins


Monday, July 12, 2004

A Look Behind

We've been exploring the latest trends in End Times witnessing here at the Dark Window and today we're going to go a little more mainstream and look at one of the most effective cash cows evangelistic tools in modern history: The Left Behind books.

I finally got around to reading the final latest installment in the Left Behind series (culminating with Jesus killing everybody who doesn't agree with him) and thought it might be fun to take a closer look at the authors (mainly because everybody else has already discussed the books).

In case you've been living under a rock, the Left Behind series is the mega-selling Bible prophecy sensation that follows the events on earth after the Rapture has taken place. For the unchurched among you (Frederick), the Rapture is a future event in which Christians and Republicans (according to prophecy guru Hal Lindsey, at least) will be instantly transported to heaven in order to escape the awful 7-year Great Tribulation that will engulf the earth.

In these miraculously bad books, we are introduced to a couple of Christian action-hero types: an airline pilot named Rayford Steele and a man the books refer to as "the Greatest Investigative Reporter of All-Time," Buck Williams. How two boys with such names grew up to be anything but porn stars is a mystery that the books does not address. After the Rapture happens (while Buck is flying in Rayford's plane), our two heroes get saved and start travelling all over the globe to fight the forces of the Antichrist (a guy named Nicolae J. Carpathia). Along the way they use a lot of hi-tech gadgets, visit several featureless locales, and speak to each other using only the most banal, wooden dialogue. (For an excellent summary of the first book in the Left Behind series, I point you to Fred over at slacktivist.)

The man who came up with the idea for the Left Behind series in the first place is Dr. Tim LaHaye.

Before turning to lucrative End Times fiction, Tim was the pastor of a giant church in San Diego and a regular on Paul Crouch's Trinity Broadcasting Network (a ministry devoted to Paul and his wife Jan which, coincidentally, runs a weekly television program based on the Kirk Cameron kit we discussed a few days ago). In his spare time, Tim also managed to found his very own college.

Based on the prominent role of airplanes, slutty flight attendants, and born-again pilots in the Left Behind novels, it should come as no surprise that one of the main offerings at Christian Heritage College is a degree in "aviation."

The degree program in Aviation is a combination of course work in Bible, Intercultural Studies, and Aviation. The program has been designed in an effort to structure a focused academic program for those seeking to pursue careers in missionary aviation.

I'm not entirely sure what "missionary aviation" means but if you loved Rayford Steele and want to be just like him (well, without having to lose your family in the Rapture first), this may very well be the course you've been looking for.

Tim's obsession with airplanes actually led to the idea of the book series, too.

Dr. Tim LaHaye conceived the idea of fictionalizing an account of the Rapture and the Tribulation while sitting on airplanes and watching the pilots. He would think to himself, "What if the Rapture occurred while flying on an airplane?"

Why would the rapture be flying on an airplane? I guess because it's cool like Tim.

Anyway, I decided to check out LaHaye's fairly surreal website. The first thing one sees upon visiting this site is an animated representation of what the Rapture will look like (with voiceover by Tim himself). I don't think words can adequately describe this so I'll just let you experience it for yourself.

One of the things I learned from the site is that Tim is the co-founder of an organization called the Pre-Trib Research Center.

The Pre-Trib Research Center is a "think tank" committed to the study, proclamation, teaching and defending of the Pretribulational Rapture (pre-70th week of Daniel) and related end-time prophecy.

I thought it was pretty funny that even they felt the need to put "think tank" in quotes.

We believe the Bible should be interpreted normally, as with any other piece of sane literature, by a consistently literal hermeneutic which recognizes the clear usage of speech figures.

Here are some of my faovrite phrases from that sentence: "interpreted normally," "sane literature," "consistently literal," and "clear usage of speech figures."

Tim's website also features a couple of reviews (I think he had trouble finding good ones). One in particular seemed to capture the entire essence of the series and the authors:

"The authors' style continues to be thoroughly captivating and keeps the reader glued to the book, wondering what will happen next. And it leaves the reader hungry for more."

Why do I think that review sums up the entire Left Behind series? Well, mainly because of who wrote it: "Christian Retailing."

Tune in next time as we'll study the life and times of Left Behind co-author Jerry B. Jenkins in our continuing look at Trends in End Times Witnessing.


A Gesture of Presidential Proportions

Our friend Uncle Horn Head points us to a hilarious blog entry by a couple of guys from Pennsylvania who wanted to see our Boy Emperor in person. They seem to have gotten more than they bargained for. Go and read.


Friday, July 09, 2004

Pray And Be Rich!

Alison made an interesting comment the other day about how much of modern American Christianity seems to be a pyramid scheme. I immediately decided to go to NewsMax to learn the truth behind the matter. The first thing I came across was a wealth-building kit by Richard Gaylord Briley called Pray and Be Rich.

Does God Want YOU To Be a Success?

I'm kind of starting to think no.

The new audio program – Pray and Be Rich – is about one person — YOU — and the success plans that God has for all who believe, pray and act on the message of the Bible.

That really seems to encapsulate Jesus' teachings, Gaylord. The Bible is all about...YOU! Well, you and money.

It astonishes many that Jesus spoke more about wise use of our possessions (our wealth) than any other subject. Riches are extensions of whatever we make of ourselves. Wealth is extra power to use for good or evil.

Kind of like spidey sense.

All babies are born poor. But as you’ll find out in Pray and Be Rich, five percent of them, in free societies, grow up to be richer than the rest.

I'm not sure I'm buying the "all babies are born poor" bit. Mainly because it's not true.

Pray and Be Rich reveals the Biblical secrets that will enable you to become a member of the five percent of people who rise to the top and succeed.

Because God wants you to be on top of that pyramid!

In frequent prayer, visualize yourself as a success, enjoying the substance of things hoped for and reaping the rewards of your work. Do NOT, as many mistakenly do, picture yourself doing the work itself. Focus on the end, not the process. See the result, not the routine, or you may discourage yourself by making the effort seem tiresome.

There's not all that much substance in what I hope for. But I guess what that means is while I'm praying I'm supposed to visualize naked chicks. You know, maybe I could get into this...

Pray and Be Rich is based on years of Dr. Briley’s research and life experiences. Within the Bible he discovered a pattern of distinctive principles about success – found in the Bible and nowhere else.

Uh huh.

Dr. Briley reveals that the whole notion of success in our day is tainted. People wrongly link success with excess and convince themselves success is bad. So, many good people shy from success. Yet at one time, Americans freely pursued personal success (requesting God’s help first), and triggered the prosperity that made our nation what it is.

Right. They requested God's help and then gave disease-infected blankets to the Indians so they could have the land. We thank Thee, O Lord, for giving us disease and blankets. Would that more men today were willing to hand out such blankets for Your glory.

In Pray and Be Rich you’ll learn that God’s purpose in fostering our success is to create rapid abundance TODAY to help us survive possible hard times TOMORROW.

Oooh. Rapid abundance. I like the sound of that. I'm imagining those gameshow booths where you get to grab a whole bunch of money being blown around by a fan.

The Pray and Be Rich program requires a tiny investment of your money and time, but may change your life forever – and help you become the success God intended!

Aha. The old "first you have to make a tiny investment" bit.

Start on your road to success and wealth today by ordering your copy of Pray and Be Rich.


List Price: $49.95
NewsMax Price: $14.95

Wow! Talk about a discount!

Special Offer: By ordering this product today I will get four months FREE to NewsMax Magazine – that's a $20 value based on our cover price. At the end of your third month of the magazine, we'll send you a renewal notice. If you like the magazine, do nothing and we'll automatically renew your subscription at the discounted annual subscription price of $42.95, and each year thereafter. There is NO RISK. You can cancel at any time.

And there's why!

Pyramid scheme? You decide. I'm off to do some praying!

Richard Gaylord Briley


Thursday, July 08, 2004

Finding Meaning at the Dark Window

First off, I'd like to offer a warm welcome and a special thanks to all those from Vox Day's blog who dropped by to say hello yesterday. We had an enjoyable discussion about the meaning of faith, belief, and Vox's hair. If you're interested in participating or reading, please scroll down the the Kirk Cameron post. I hope those of you who are new will continue to visit the Dark Window as it's always far more fun to have a wide range of opinions and beliefs represented among readers.

Secondly, I'd like to draw everybody's attention to a couple of excellent blog entries:

Bartholomew introduces us to a creationist adventurer named Russ McGlenn who's seeking evidence that the dinosaurs perished in the flood.

Glenstonecottage draws our attention to an excellent piece over at The Road To Surfdom* called The don't worry, be happy list.


[* ed. note: flagrant spelling error corrected per S.Z.]


Rush Reminds Us That The Right Never Hated Clinton

The OxyMan is back and he's got an important reminder for all us us...The Right never hated Bill Clinton!

We need that clarification, because there was no hatred of Clinton. At most it was frustration, and the frustration was really aimed at the American people: How could the American people give this guy a pass?

I've long held that the name "Hitlery" was simply a term of endearment.

And the fact that the Democrats didn't care how he was soiling their party and reputation was a mystery to us. But I'm telling you what, this level of hatred -- I mean we didn't do books. We didn't publish books to great literary acclaim on how to assassinate Bill Clinton like they're doing now. We didn't come out with some of these steamy documentaries and movies. I mean, our fringe did but the mainstream of our movement ignored them.

If by "we didn't do books" Rush means "we did a nonstop cavalcade of books" then he's correct. Perhaps Rush has forgotten the endless Wing Nut books and films discussing Clinton Body Counts (World Net Daily is still hawking a book about how Ron Brown was murdered by the Clintons) and sinister conspiracy theories. There was also the little matter of Vince Foster. I'm quite curious who Rush means by "our fringe."

There's been nothing like this in my lifetime in terms of undisguised, undiluted, pure hatred aimed at a party leader or president. There was never this kind of hatred and vitriol with Clinton. It was policy oriented, and it was aimed at a lot of, as I say, frustration with the American people for not seeming to care about it.

Policy oriented? Since when did "policy" mean "sex?"

One of the reasons we think this was the case was the economy was doing so well, people didn't want to mess things up.

Kind of an interesting admission.

Could be any number of reasons, too. Maybe everybody in America is having affairs and didn't think BJs in the Oval Office is a big deal. You never know. Viagra, you know, big back then, sex-crazed country, a lot of people wishing they were Clinton. Who knows? The point is, there wasn't all of this personal animosity and rage that today defines and animates the Democratic Party and its kook fringe which has become its mainstream.

I don't know what I find more disturbing - the fact that Rush is saying this with a straight face or that his loyal "dittoheads" believe it.

Anyway, Rush demonstrates this focus on policy and lack of personal animosity in another segment of the same radio broadcast.

"Keep your eye on the Clintons," and there aren't going to be any fingerprints. I mean, when they take Kerry and Edwards out, it's not going to look like they did it. But I'm telling you, the Clinton phasers -- just as of yesterday -- have been switched from stun to kill. That's what this whole story means this whole story sets up a so-called competition between Edwards and Hillary Rodham Rodham? Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha!

Yeah. Ha.

"Competition" (laughs) my shrinking rear end. There's not going to be any competition because there's not going to be any Edwards around to be competed with. Keep a sharp eye on those Clinton phasers.

I'm beginning to wonder if Rush's obsession with Bill's "phaser" might not have had something to do with the whole Marta thing...

Update: Seb has a somewhat related piece about Wing Nuts and the Clintons. And I know this is probably highly unethical but I must quote from one of the commenters there because he seems to sum it all up perfectly:

To defeat the Clinton evil, we have to find a Democratic candidate who will choose a running mate who is neither a friend nor a non-friend of Clinton, who will neither win nor lose the election, and who will neither remain in office nor lose office. It's sort of like the folktale motif where the villain somehow wins a promise from the gods that he cannot be killed by a man or by a woman, either in daytime or nighttime, inside or outside his home, so they have to find a hermaphrodite to do it at twilight on the porch entrance. - Jeffrey Kramer


Wednesday, July 07, 2004

Americans Holding Children Prisoners in Iraq?

A firestorm seems ready to erupt over US handling of children prisoners (yes, you read that correctly) in Iraq so I direct you over to Sadly, No! where Seb has the latest on a scandal that you will probably be hearing much more about in the very near future.

A German television station ran a report on Monday about US troops holding and abusing children in Iraqi prisons. If you understand any German, I highly recommend that you watch the report itself.

If you'll forgive a poor Dark Window translation, here are a couple of key points I took from the television piece (Seb promises to put up a more in-depth translation of the report on his website later):

In this first part, US Sergeant Samuel Provance discusses a scene he witnessed involving a 16-year-old boy.

He was really scared, very alone. He had the thinnest arms I had ever seen. His whole body trembled. His wrists were so thin that we couldn't even get the handcuffs on him. As I saw him for the first time and led him to the interrogation, I felt sorry. The interrogation specialists threw water over him and put him into a car, where they drove him around through the extremely cold night. Afterwards, they covered him with mud and showed him to his imprisoned father, on whom they'd tried other interrogation methods. They hadn't been able to get him to speak, though. The interrogation specialist told me that after the father saw his son in this condition, his heart was broken, he started crying, and he promised to tell them anything they wanted. After this, however, the son remained in detention and was put in with the adults.

In another chilling report, an Iraqi television reporter talks about a special camp he saw in which hundreds of children were being held, many "under the age of puberty."

As I said, Seb promises to have a more comprehensive translation of the report up later so I encourage you to stay tuned to Sadly, No! for details. And he has already written more on the subject here.

There's also this report at Aftenposten Norway discussing International reaction to the story:

"These types of attacks are absolutely unacceptable," said a spokesman for Norwegian Prime Minister Kjell Magne Bondevik. "They violate international law and are morally indefensible."

Odd Jostein Sæter of the prime minister's office told Norwegian Broadcasting (NRK) Tuesday that Norwegian officials will react "both politically and diplomatically" to their US counterparts.

Neither the imprisonment nor abuse of children "can be tolerated," Sæter said.

As Drudge would say, "Developing..."

Update: Seb now has a much more comprehensive translation of the German report (and a link to the broadcast itself) here. Continue to check back with Sadly, No! for all the latest developments.


Tuesday, July 06, 2004

Kirk Cameron Shows Us The Way Of The Master

We've been looking at a lot of Christian t-shirts lately as part of our series on cutting edge trends in End Times witnessing. Today we're going to look at something even more cutting edge - a state-of-the-art witnessing system developed by evangelist Ray Comfort and legendary actor Kirk Cameron called The Way of the Master.

You may remember Kirk from the groundbreaking television program Growing Pains or the critically acclaimed movie Left Behind. The WOTM system banks heavily on his star power as he hosts the video programs and gives all kinds of animated talks on the website. As soon as you visit the site, Kirk walks out onto your screen and, in a little animation, tells you how to get started. Here are a few highlights:

Who do you know who isn't saved?...The Bible says that when they die, if they're found guilty on the day of judgment without the savior, God will give them justice and they'll spend eternity in hell.

That's interesting phrasing..."God will give them justice." Maybe it's just me but that sounds sort of sadistic. Like God's saying, "Hey, Pete. I'd like to give you something...ETERNAL CONDEMNATION!"

God doesn't want them to perish and I know you don't either.

Awww, now you're just buttering me up, Kirk.

Please don't let your loved ones go to hell without trying to rescue them.

That would kind of make me a monster if I didn't try, huh? Of course I'm not sure what that would make the God who gave me such lousy friends and relatives that they're too lazy and self-absorbed to buy this system to win my soul. I prefer not to think about things like that.

After Kirk's little introduction we're directed to a screen that lists several choices we can make to funnel us into the appropriate section of the site. Most involve some variation of "Somebody I love is going to hell. What do I do?" So let's start with:

I'm trying to witness to someone who thinks they're already a Christian, but I suspect they are not saved.

Let's ignore the bad grammar and click that one. I'm thinking Karl Rove.

Congratulations! You've just got yourself the toughest witnessing encounter of all. Wait. Osama bin Laden might be tougher.

Hehe. Good one, Kirk.

If you're not sure how to approach this person or you're simply tired of arguing with them, I've got something just for you. I've put together a kit that will thoroughly equip you to stop fighting and effectively lead that person to get soundly saved. If you're not wildly thrilled with this teaching, send it back to us and we'll refund your money. Come on. Order the Way of the Master Foundation Course and you'll be on your way to reaching them.

A wildly thrilling kit, eh? Well, I'm not sure yet. I'll click on another option. "I'm concerned that someone I love is going to hell"?

It's so good that you're concerned about your loved one. That shows that you have compassion.

Cool! Now I'm just like Michael Savage. He calls himself a compassionate conservative.

Here's what I want you to do. I've created a little kit that will give you all the skills you need. Will you try it? Will you invest a few hours of your life for the sake of a loved one? Then click on the picture and order the Way of the Master Foundation Course. If you're not wildly thrilled with the results, send it back and we'll return your money.

Boy, Kirk sure wants to sell me one of these kits. Every question seems to lead to the conclusion that I should buy one. And that constant refund refrain makes me think Kirk's auditioning for the role of infomercial host. After Way of the Master, I foresee Way of the Real Estate Master.

Clicking on the picture Kirk mentioned leads me to a sales page where I can choose from several different products. Kirk recommended that I go with the Foundation Course so I'd better click that.

$59.00 for the first 8 episodes (on 4 DVDs). Kinda steep. I'm not sure I love Karl Rove that much. And since it only includes the first 8 episodes, it looks like I'll have to pay extra if Karl turns out to be difficult.

In this eight-lesson course, you watch and learn as Kirk and Ray teach you from exciting locations, and then invite you to be a “fly on the wall” as they share their faith on the streets (with hidden cameras) to normal everyday people, as well as gang members, atheists, cult members, etc.

I like how they point out that atheists aren't normal everyday people. And I wonder what they mean by "exciting locations." Given the above paragraph, it sounds like maybe they infiltrate secret witchcraft covens run by unbelieving rappers. Seeing Kirk in that kind of setting might actually be worth the 59 bucks.

Anyway, let's take a look at the episodes:

Episode #1: The Firefighter

Ooooh. Kirk in a firefighter outfit. Grrrawwrr!

Episode #2: The Mirror of the Ten Commandments

Oh, yeah...I remember that episode. It's the one where Kirk uses cheap shampoo and winds up looking like Judge Roy Moore. Hilarity ensues until his mom counsels him to buy a new shampoo.

Episode #8: WDJD? (What DID Jesus Do?)

I think this was one of the more dated episodes in which their Puerto Rican neighbor steals Carol's bike. Alan Thicke, in his typically girly liberal way, convinces Kirk not to turn him in.

I'm still not sure, though. $59 seems like a lot of dough when I can be legally ordained for only $29. And I still haven't paid that bill so my status as the Dark Reverend is still sort of iffy. Besides, I should probably save my money for when Seb and I finally get our dates with the holiness gals. Seb's dead set on taking them to the Olive Garden so I'm going to need that $59.

In spite of that, I hope today's lesson in cutting-edge evangelistic techniques has been informative and inspirational for all of you. Don't forget to tune in next time for another exciting installment of Trends in End Times Witnessing!


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