Human Events Blog

Rick Santorum and the Theology of the Media

 

Presidential candidate Rick Santorum dropped by CBS News for a remarkably hostile interview with Bob Schieffer of Face the Nation.  Schieffer was very, very angry about Santorum’s statement that President Barack Obama adheres to a “phony theology.”  Close your eyes and try to imagine a comparably hostile interview of any Democrat candidate, concerning anything.

Here’s the comment from Santorum to a man in Columbus, Ohio that got Schieffer’s blood pressure up, from the official CBS News transcript:

RICK SANTORUM: It’s not about you. It’s not about you. It’s not about your quality of life. It’s not about your jobs.

MAN: Right.

RICK SANTORUM: It’s about some phony ideal, some phony theology. Oh, not a theology based on the Bible, a different theology.

As Santorum pointed out, when he was able to get a word in edgewise, he was talking about Obama’s political fealty to the Church of Global Warming, which has been the official state religion of the federal government for many years.  The devotion of Big Government to the global-warming cult – which loves to misappropriate scientific terminology to make itself look reasonable, but is in fact utterly fanatical, and completely impervious to actual scientific evidence – is a marriage of political convenience.  It has the characteristics of religious fanaticism, but this is motivated by radical environmentalism’s profound political utility to the Big Government crowd. 

The Church of Global Warming provides the ultimate open-ended, logic-proof justification for the limitless accumulation of State power, combining junk science intimidation with turbo-charged moralism.  For all the media efforts to paint Rick Santorum as a Christian zealot and scold, he couldn’t get close to the aggressive sermonizing – backed up by compulsive power and a trillion dollars’ worth of taxes, regulation, and compulsory subsidies – brought to bear by radical environmentalists.  Few religions have ever conceived of a tithe to match what the global-warming cult has taken from us.

What really got Schieffer angry, as he would later concede, was Santorum’s use of the word “theology.”  It’s funny how the supposedly enlightened and open-minded progressive masters of the mainstream media are the ones who blow a gasket when somebody uses a magic word.

BOB SCHIEFFER: I– I don’t want to just spend the whole program on this, but was your–

RICK SANTORUM (voice overlapping): Good.

BOB SCHIEFFER: –use of the word theology, perhaps, you could have had a better word than that? I mean, don’t you know that– that–

RICK SANTORUM (voice overlapping): It–

BOB SCHIEFFER: –or do you wonder that– that might lead some people to suggest that you were questioning the President’s faith?

RICK SANTORUM: Well– no, because I’ve repeatedly said I don’t question the President’s faith. I’ve– I’ve repeatedly said that I believe the President is a Christian. He says he is a Christian. But I’m talking about his world view or his– the– the way he approaches problems in this country and I think they’re– they’re different than how most people do in America.

No matter how often Santorum denies that he was rendering judgment on Obama’s Christianity, “some people” are going to “suggest that he was questioning the President’s faith.”  They’re called “reporters,” and they’re going to keep doing it in front of cameras, until the Santorum theocracy meme has been firmly planted in the public mind.

Schieffer proceeded to hammer Santorum for suggesting that ObamaCare’s mandates for free prenatal testing would lead to an increase in the number of abortions, because, as Santorum put it, “the bottom line is that a lot of prenatal tests are done to identify deformities in utero and the customary procedure is to encourage abortions and in fact, prenatal testing, particularly amniocentesis… which is a procedure that actually creates a risk of having a miscarriage when you have it and is done for the purposes of identifying maladies of a child in the womb.”

Schieffer went nuclear, and proceeded to make some comments he would soon have to apologize for:

BOB SCHIEFFER: Well, I– I know you know what you’re talking about. I know that well. I know you also had another child that was stillborn. But–

RICK SANTORUM (overlapping): And I was–

BOB SCHIEFFER (overlapping): Didn’t you want to know about that, just a minute.

(Cross talking)

BOB SCHIEFFER: Just hold on.

RICK SANTORUM: But what my– my child was not stillborn. My child was born alive.

BOB SCHIEFFER: All right.

RICK SANTORUM: –and he lived two hours.

BOB SCHIEFFER: All right.

RICK SANTORUM: And by the way, prenatal testing was– we had a– we had a sonogram done there and they detected a problem. And, yes, the doctor said, you know, you– you should consider an abortion. This is typical, Bob. This is what goes on and in– in medical rooms around the country. And yes, prenatal testing, amniocentesis does, in fact, result more often than not in this country in abortions. That is– that is a fact.

So, is Bob Schieffer just some random guy CBS News pulled off the street to host Face the Nation, or is he an educated journalist with a grasp of the issues?  Because everyone who has paid the slightest bit of attention to Santorum’s biography knows that his child was not “stillborn.”  It’s not an obscure detail at this point, not after liberal media personalities decided it would be fun to mock Santorum for bringing his dead son home to meet his family.

Santorum went on to remind the befuddled Schieffer that his beloved President Obama is a staunch defender of partial-birth abortion, “a procedure used almost exclusively to kill children late in pregnancy when they’ve been found out to be disabled,” and also voted for a provision “that said that children born alive as a result of abortions late in pregnancy, who were otherwise viable, should be allowed to be killed by the doctor.”  That probably wasn’t in the latest email from Media Matters to CBS.

As you can see from following the rest of the interview, which includes Schieffer whining that Santorum’s doubts about federal control of education would only make sense if “everybody could afford to home school their children,” this really is a theological dispute, but it has nothing to do with Barack Obama’s church attendance.  It’s about the theology of the media, which is noticeably silent when Obama reads from the catechism of Christ the Tax Collector at a national prayer breakfast, invites liberal religious groups into the White House for prayer circles, and attends Rev. Wright’s Church of Racial Hatred for decades.

Here’s the primary belief animating Big Media theology: nothing happens unless the federal government does it.  Pre-natal care only happens if the taxpayers finance it, or insurance companies are mandated to perform it for “free.”  Kids will only receive an education if Jimmy Carter’s Department of Education and the teachers’ unions provide it.  The Earth will only receive proper stewardship if Big Government – centralized even beyond Washington, D.C. – compels it.

Organized religion is acceptable to the media only when it reinforces these goals, or at least refuses to challenge them.  That’s why the same people who are working hard to build a narrative that Santorum is unfit for high office because he’s a harbinger of incipient theocracy have absolutely no problem with Barack Obama using religion to justify redistributionist liberalism.  In fact, they grow very angry when they think a liberal’s religious sincerity is challenged, even obliquely.  The only thing that enrages them nearly as much is a conservative whose religious sincerity is apparent.  It’s all about showing the appropriate degree of deference to the proper Ultimate Authority.

 

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