Claim Canada

Kathryn Joyce's criticism of the (lack of) press coverage of Canadian PM-elect Stephen Harper's religious views is titled "Theocracy, eh?"

Considering the pounding Josh Holland took on his post Cry in your Molson, I'll skip the Canuck yucks and just emphasize a couple of points Joyce makes.

As in press coverage of the Bush 2000 candidacy, Joyce writes:

"the media have largely overlooked the real significance of the religious conservatism hinted at by Harper’s religious language, and have effectively de-fanged Harper’s social conservatism -- in Harper’s own terminology, the Burkean or theocratic conservatism -- that Harper turned to in 2003 when building a coalition between economic and religious conservatives that would be strong enough to take on the Liberal majority."
They haven't just ignored an extreme religious conservative in the Bush mold, according to Joyce, but "few seem to realize that Harper is politically and religiously much further right than Bush himself, and his language suggests that he takes the conflict between left and right much more seriously."

She cites among her examples Harper's worship-related ties to Muslim-hater Franklin Graham, his stated embrace of a Christian Coalition-sanctioned agenda, and his address to the Council for National Policy several years back, an org founded by Left Behind's Tim LaHaye and whose membership is a "who’s who of the radical right, including James Dobson, Grover Norquist, Paul Weyrich, Gary Bauer, Brent Bozell, Holland and Jeffrey Coors, Pat Robertson, Phyllis Schlafly and Oliver North."

Terrified as I am of the radical right and the tumorous hypocrisies within it, I'm only convinced of one thing: Harper is a politician willing to seduce whoever it takes to win. It may be that, just like American neo-cons, he hasn't much by way of personal religious convictions; but I suppose that hasn't gone too far in stemming the American religious right's march toward theocracy...

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