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Jesus or Ayn Rand - can conservatives claim both?
Author Ayn Rand stands in New York City in this 1957 photo. Her criticism of religion outraged some, but her books remain popular.
June 29th, 2011
10:22 AM ET

Jesus or Ayn Rand - can conservatives claim both?

By John Blake, CNN

(CNN)– Can a person follow Ayn Rand and Jesus?

That’s the question posed by a provocative media campaign that claims that some prominent conservative leaders cannot serve two masters: Jesus and the controversial author of  "Atlas Shrugged," Ayn Rand.

The American Values Network, a group of political activists and pastors, sparked a debate when it recently released a video challenging some conservative and Republican leaders’ professed admiration for Rand,  an atheist who saw selfishness as a virtue and celebrated unfettered capitalism.

Eric Sapp,  AVN’s executive director, said the Republican Party cannot portray itself as a defender of Christian values and then defend the worldview of "the patron saint of selfishness" who scorned religion and compassion.

Sapp singled out Republican leaders such as Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wisconsin, Sen. Rand Paul, R-Kentucky, and talk radio host Rush Limbaugh after all of them expressed admiration for Rand.

Ryan,  architect of the GOP’s propsed budget and Medicare plan, once said that Rand’s philosophy was “sorely needed right now,” and that she did a great job of explaining “the morality of capitalism.”

Sapp sees little morality in Rand's worldview:

Rand said religion was ‘evil,’ called the message of John 3:16 ‘monstrous,’ argued that the weak are beyond love and undeserving of it, that loving your neighbor was immoral and impossible…

Sapp cited conservative leader Chuck Colson who released a video condemning Rand’s “Atlas Shrugged” as a silly novel that “peddles a starkly anti-Christian philosophy.”

Sapp added:

Hard to reconcile leaders of ‘God’s Own Party’ praising someone who is about as anti Christ as one can get, huh?”

Onkar Ghate, a senior fellow at the Ayn Rand Center for Individual Rights in Washington, said the philosophies of Christianity and Ayn Rand are incompatible.

Jesus taught that people should love and serve others, including their enemies. Rand taught that people's fundamental focus should be on their individual happiness, he said:

 I don’t think what Ayn Rand advocates in 'Atlas Shrugged' and what Jesus teaches in the Sermon on the Mount are compatible. She’s an egoist and therefore an individualist.  Jesus is advocating altruism and collectivism.

Rand died in 1982, but she remains polarizing. The great recession has triggered new interest in her novel, “Atlas Shrugged.” The book depicts a bleak future where the U.S. government has seized control of private industry and discouraged innovation.

The book may have been rooted in Rand's childhood trauma. She was born in Russia in 1905, and saw the Communist Party come to power in a violent revolution. Her family was left destitute after party officials seized her father’s business.

She immigrated to the United States where she eventually became a screenwriter. She ultimately made her mark through her novels. Critics say Rand’s characters were stilted mouthpieces for her philosophy of  Objectivism, which insists that individuals should be driven by “rational self-interest.”  Still, "Atlas Shrugged" is now considered one of the most influential books of the 20th century.

Rand's philosophy didn’t say much good about religion. In a 1964 Playboy interview posted on the Ayn Rand Center for Individual Rights site, she said that religious faith is “a negation of human reason” and charity wasn’t a virtue.

Rand told Playboy:

There is nothing wrong in helping other people, if and when they are worthy of the help and you can afford to help them. I regard charity as a marginal issue. What I am fighting is the idea that charity is a moral duty and a primary virtue.

Defenders of Rand say that a person can adopt elements of Rand’s philosophy and reject whatever clashes with their faith.

Yaron Brooks, president of the Ayn Rand Center for Individual Rights, also defended Rand’s philosophy in a recent CNN.com commentary.

He said while people call Jesus or Mother Teresa heroes, they should use the same description for people like 19th century oil tycoon, John D. Rockefeller and inventor and businessman, Thomas Edison.

Their pursuit of personal profit is a virtue because it enriches society, not just individuals, Brooks said.

Brooks wrote:

It is they, not the Mother Teresas of the world that we should strive to be like and teach our kids the same.

Elections, some say, are ultimately a contest of ideas. It’ll be interesting to see if those political leaders who admire Rand continue to talk openly about her philosophy as the 2012 presidential campaign escalates.

Or will they deflect a question I suspect they’ll hear again and again:

How can you invoke Jesus and follow Rand?

- CNN Writer

Filed under: Belief • Books • Business • Christianity • Culture wars • Economy • Ethics • Politics

soundoff (1,025 Responses)
  1. AKSean

    "Defenders of Rand say that a person can adopt elements of Rand’s philosophy and reject whatever clashes with their faith." It seems to me that this approach has been used by many adherents of religions of every stripe. I'm not suggesting that all persons of faith are this way, but many of the more vocal religious people that get air time in the media (especially elected officials) choose to believe certain aspects of their religious doctrine and ignore/reject those tenets that do not fall in line with their socio-political agendas.

    June 29, 2011 at 4:20 pm |
  2. cheesemaster

    How could one not realize the superiority of those fantastic atheist paradises of the past like Stalins USSR or Chairman Mao's workers paradise of China. Or you could just sneak in to North Korea now, I am sure if you explain God is dead they will welcome you with open arms o enlightened brethren. Never mind just enter Mexico illegal and get the standard sentence of one years hard labor the the Nicaraguans get, you know the country south of us that lectured us about our laws.....

    June 29, 2011 at 4:19 pm |
    • The good people, atheist and religious

      Or the inquisition. Let's also not forget that Hitler and Stalin had good religious upbringings. And the largest massacre of all was in killing off the North American Indians, OK Pilgrim..

      June 29, 2011 at 4:22 pm |
    • exactly what i was

      What does your post have to do with this topic? You are attacking governements that you have labeled athesist and have really made no valid arguement or offered no proof on how those nations fates were related to atheism. I'm a Christian, but a country does not need to be a "Christian nation" in order to be successful (whatever that means) as you seem to imply that it does.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:28 pm |
    • JimRando

      Whether Stalin was atheist is not the point (and many believe he was not); his supposed atheism wasn't the cause of his crimes in Russia, nor was it the cause of their economic downfall. As for China, while they ARE communist they are NOT atheist. They just don't believe in western religions. Instead of trying to deflect from the question (can you believe in unabated capitalism AND selfless giving when they are by nature opposite ideals?) please stop trying to turn the discussion of religious (or atheistic) persecution.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:37 pm |
  3. AJ

    "I swear by my Life and my love of it that I will never live for the sake of another man, nor ask another man to live for the sake of mine." John Galt

    The above is a main, recurring theme and statement to live by in Atlas Shrugged. It is Galt's motto.

    "I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep."

    The above is the main, recurring theme and statement to live by for Christians. It is Christ's motto.

    How people can imagine these two major tenets are in anyway compatible is beyond me. They are contrary and opposed to each other, and they are mainstays of both beliefs.

    You either buy one, or the other, but it cannot be both.

    June 29, 2011 at 4:18 pm |
    • meemee

      You're right. It comes to this; Be a sheep and be led. Don't question your betters, even how they got to be "your betters." OR Think for yourself, act for yourself, be generous to those who deserve it when you can, but be true to yourself.

      The fact that Christians actually engage in completely selfish motives, even to the idea of being saved in order to avoid their god's eternal wrath, and grow perverse as masochists at best.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:26 pm |
    • Page Trimble

      It's not an all or nothing thing. Jesus died for my sins and asks me to love God and my neighbor as myself. Just because Ayn doesn't believe that doesn't mean I can't agree with some things she thinks. It's ignorant to assume that if you're a Christian you can't believe some philosophies Ayn holds. I can find truth is any philosopher if you give me enough time.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:35 pm |
    • AJ

      Sorry Page, I'll continue to disagree. Christ said live for others. Lay down your life for others. Turn the other cheek.

      Rand states that you should live your life only for yourself, and not for others.

      Still not sure how people can claim this two polar opposites are somehow compatible.

      Sure, you can like little things about Rands book, but if you ignore the central tenet I quoted, I'd hardly call you Randian. And if you do describe to Galt's central tenet, I'd say you weren't much of a Christian.

      June 29, 2011 at 5:04 pm |
    • NotBuyingIt

      A good shepherd tends his flock so that they can be sheared (fleeced?) and/or slaughtered later. The sheep follow blindly because they don't know any better.

      All in all, it's a fitting analogy...

      June 29, 2011 at 5:10 pm |
    • AJ

      While your opinion on Christianity comes across Notbuyingit, what exactly does that have to do with Christianity vs Objectivism?

      My comparison was to show them incompatible. Not endorsing or naysaying either.

      June 29, 2011 at 5:23 pm |
    • Leo D.

      If this is true it does not disprove her ideas. Just that she was unwilling to lay down her life for them. Unlike the men who followed Jesus. When facing disease and death her ideas gave her no comfort or hope. The Disciples knew this life was not all there is but they would be reunited to their lord and more importantly their friend.

      April 7, 2012 at 5:39 pm |
    • Leo D.

      AJ
      Christ said live for others. Lay down your life for others. Turn the other cheek. CHRIST DID NOT SAY TO LIVE FOR OTHERS He said to live for Him which includes laying down our lives when He directs us to do so. The bible also says something about pearls before swine.

      April 7, 2012 at 5:44 pm |
  4. Lettuce Prey

    I see nothing contradictory in admiring Rand's political and social views and still following Christian principles/morals. You don't have to agree with EVERYTHING someone says or writes. How about the reverse? I think Rand was more than a little addle-brained in some respects and I disagree with much of her views, but I'm also an atheist. Is that equally impossible? This article was ridiculous and meaningless.

    June 29, 2011 at 4:12 pm |
    • Manley

      The two philosophies both try to define value and ethical behaviour. The christian concepts of value and goodness are derived from God. The objectivist concepts are derived from man in the absence of God. There is really no middle ground here. Either you understand that point or you have not understood both Rand and the bible.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:17 pm |
    • The good people, atheist and religious

      However, NOT derived by god. Derived by good people, would be the correct response.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:23 pm |
  5. L. Arata

    Ayn Rand is a sociopath; Jesus, um, wasn't.

    June 29, 2011 at 4:12 pm |
    • The good people, atheist and religious

      His drive towards having killed oneself does not set a good example. Clearly today one might say he came from a dysfunctional family, not the one the religious say. Likely abused.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:15 pm |
    • Bubba

      Yeah, I pick the guy who put others first, even though people on these boards keep telling me that since I don't attend church, I am all about personal gain, drugs, crime, and solipsism. I guess the real question is, would Ayn Rand tweet pictures of her crotch to Anthony Weiner if she were alive today?

      June 29, 2011 at 4:15 pm |
  6. JT

    When you have Christian fanatics in large numbers relentlessly trying to stifle Science then innovation is lost and the US is left behind. It's the evil atheist Chinese (sarcasm) who are pulling ahead and leaving this "xtian nation" behind.

    June 29, 2011 at 4:09 pm |
    • Dan

      Innovation is stifed in this country by a federal and state governments which give inadequate instruction in math and science, allows businesses to send jobs overseas and pays farmers to plow their fields under to keep prices high. Fanatical Christians have nothing to do with that.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:16 pm |
  7. GonzoG

    Rand was an extremist psycho crackpot. Her brand of Capitalism is totally un-workable. It allows for no public ownership, administration, or regulation of ANYTHING.
    Unfortunately, without regulation, there are very few incentives for honest dealing other than being 'shamed' and losing business. Financial fiascos such as the Savings and Loan scandal and the debacles of AIG, Goldman Sachs, etc would happen much more often as purpetrators 'take the money and run' when they finagle the books.

    June 29, 2011 at 4:09 pm |
    • CalgarySandy

      I asked a Libertarian how he felt we could do without taxes to pay for things like the police. He said that everyone would have their own police, paid for by themselves. I said I thought it was impossible to do this effectively. He said the rich would live in their own neighborhoods and share the cost of the police. I asked him how that was different from taxes. That ended that discussion. I asked a Libertarian how he would handle education. Again, the haves would educate their own children and to heck with the rest of the children born to economic losers. I asked him what he thought all these uneducated kids and teens who were not in school would be doing instead. He didn't care. I told him he would care when mobs of the disenfranchised started tearing down the walls of the compounds to survive.

      Ayn Rand, with no real credentials, looked to a world of the lucky walling themselves off and letting everyone else die off. I have never met a real Libertarian who gave a ratz azz about anything but themselves. I agree with some of her views on religion but they are part of the greater theories she espouses. Any Ranters a dear friend called them. They are not about Liberty or a strong nation.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:31 pm |
    • Captain

      Those are absurd examples. Why do liberals use common sense things like Police & Roads to justify everything the government does? You are describing anarchy, not "Libertarianism". Ayn Rand believed in a RATIONAL Government that protected the individual and based it's morality on that moral code. Police that protect us from the physical threats and force of an irrational neighbor is something we can agree on and is easy to see in action. On the other hand, using that as a basis to say authorities should be "protecting" us from bad life decisions and taxing us simply because we have more than our neighbor is irrational and self-destructive. The far left rejects Ayn Rand for the same reason the Far Right does. They both still practice morality not based on reason, but absurd collectivist concepts and sacrifice.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:46 pm |
    • GonzoG

      Rand's philosophy works only in an environment of absolute 100% scrupulous honesty where all members of the society are rational, reasonable, and completely dispassionate.

      It might work on Planet Vulcan, but not Earth-and CERTAINLY not in the United States. (and frankly, after a few trips outside the U.S. less well THERE–in most other non-European countries even the good people are not 100% honest and complete emotional basketcases) [Denmark–they were pretty close in Denmark. Germany was pretty good, too, but they were wrapped a LITTLE tight]

      June 29, 2011 at 5:17 pm |
    • Everyman

      Of course there's collectivism. Look at the words United States and you understand why that will be.

      June 29, 2011 at 5:57 pm |
  8. TRH

    "...an atheist who saw selfishness as a virtue and celebrated unfettered capitalism."

    Seems like if anything she gave atheists a bad name.

    June 29, 2011 at 4:06 pm |
    • Bubba

      I like to make money, but not by stepping on poor people. I'd step on a few rich people maybe, but not very hard.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:17 pm |
  9. Anchorite

    Ayn Rand and Jesus are absolutely incompatible, and anyone who has read her books will know that immediately. I read Atlas Shrugged cover to cover recently, and it was the most vitriolic anti-religious polemic I've ever read. The characters who speak her opinions explicitly paint Christianity and Communism with the same brush as being oppressive to the human spirit in the worst ways. And Rand left no room for people who dissented with her total world view one iota. If you want follow Rand, you really have to either reject Christianity or admit she could be totally wrong about certain things. In short, don't be a follower, think for yourself. You can find wisdom in her worlds, but to consider her some kind of leader or her books to be manuals for morality and success is to be the same sheep she accused the followers of Christianity and Communism to be.

    June 29, 2011 at 4:04 pm |
    • Michael

      Think for yourself by rejecting scientific evidence and holding on to magic tales that will never be proven? Congrats you spread idiotic ideas.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:07 pm |
    • CalgarySandy

      She was not that well educated nor did she look at what the consequences of actually following her childish and irrational ideas would be. Reading her books is like wading through molasses in January. The prose is really horrible. She makes Dickens look like easy reading.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:34 pm |
  10. Stargoat

    Anyone can claim anything. Why do people insist on believing other people when they speak? One would have thought that if Communism taught us nothing else, it taught us that people in power will lie to stay in power. They will lie about GDP, freedom, human rights, morality, religion, ethics, and body count.

    June 29, 2011 at 4:03 pm |
    • Neutral Voice

      And it doesn't matter which Party they belong to when they do it, because they ALL do it. Greed is Greed and it has no color or orientation, shape or size, but can be reflected in the eyes.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:18 pm |
    • CalgarySandy

      Communism without the constant threat of immolation by the US never had a chance to develop so that we could see if it could work. I don't think it could because it is premised on humans caring about each other. Somewhere between Rand and Lenin there may be a happy medium. The unfortunate reality is that the bulk of humanity does not care about others other than to pay lip service.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:38 pm |
  11. everyman

    Q:Can a person follow Ayn Rand and Jesus?

    A: Absolutely – When I look to Jesus I do so for religious and personal guidance. When I seek economic guidance or guidance on governmental issues, I look to Rand and Reagan. I never even pretend to cross the two; because I understand that religion is for self guidance and government is for protecting my right to follow Jesus. Anyone who believes that you can’t follow both believes that their way is the only way. This goes in the face of what each teaches. Following both, one or none is your choice, the freedom to choose ones path without reprisal is the message from both. Remember only you can live your life, and how you choose to live it can, ultimately, only be left up to you.

    June 29, 2011 at 4:03 pm |
    • Manley

      I do not believe you have ever read Rand. Objectivist theory attempts to define our fundamental understanding of value, and seperates it from a judeo-christian tradition. Perhaps you are just picking and choosing talking points from both. But you cannot follow both philosophies simultaneously.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:10 pm |
    • L. Arata

      I'm with Manley!

      June 29, 2011 at 4:14 pm |
    • Kent Allard

      If you have one set of value for your personal life, and a contrary set of ideals for your financial life, you assume they are not connected. But, of course, they are inextricably linked. To profess that Rand and Jesus's ideals can coexist is a narcissistic viewpoint, allowing you to justify dissonant behavior when it is in your best interests. An Ayn Rand, Christian world view is a Frankenstein monster that eats, not it's creator as in the novel, but the people the creator crosses paths with. You can kid yourself that they are compatible, but their are a million Napoleans around the world in asylums, just as sure of their created reality.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:21 pm |
    • Lisa B.

      I don't think you've actually even read the bible.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:23 pm |
    • Another Andy

      Your Answer should have been-
      A: Yes, if you are a hypocrite.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:24 pm |
    • CalgarySandy

      Living a life by principles that conflict with your religious/moral ones is called Cognitive Dissonance. It causes stress and confusion in the brain. At some point you will realize that Christianity would not support your Libertarian side and the Libertarian side would laugh its azz off at your religious side.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:42 pm |
  12. jim

    How about we just let our children grow up to be what they want to be and some will be Mother Theresa and some will be Einstein and some will be Manson. Relax and let it happen – stop trying to create specific adults out of your children.

    June 29, 2011 at 4:03 pm |
  13. oxymoron

    Look!!! Another faith-based blog entry that the atheist congregation flock to and cram their views down other people's throats.

    Then they say.. "No, it is you that does such a thing!" Ok, ok.. for arguments sake.. Let me just say, "Ok, you're right." Now that the "distraction' is out of the way, please address my original point. In advance, I will agree with ALL that you accuse me of... "You're right!!!!" Anything you can think of saying, I stand right now and say.. "Ok.. you're right".. thus, the debate that you distract to is now moot. Thus... go back to the original point.. Why do atheists do such a thing? The very thing they accuse others of doing?

    You see, everyone has faith in something. It is the object of our faith that differs. My faith is in God. Atheist's faith is in man and man's knowledge. We differ. So what... Does it make it "ok" for me to shove my views on you? Nope.. I agree. That is wrong. If someone wants to have such a discussion about religion, I'm there... But otherwise.. to cram it.. It is wrong. Is it not wrong to do the same thing? Oooh, now we have a dilemma. Because it's "justified" and "made to appear ok" when you do it... but point fingers at others as if it's wrong. This is about as childish and ignorant as one can get... Ignore what they do, but point fingers at others for doing the same thing.. How dumb.......

    It is an oxymoron.. Atheists flock to a faith-based/belief sites, and cram their 'views' down the throats of others.. They talk smack about others... and some of you are just down right nasty..

    So basically, what your actions say is that if "my belief" was that... let's say, Gay marriage is wrong.. .It is ethically acceptable for me to hit up gay marriage blog posts and call them names, ignorant, stupid, full of lust, etc? Because, it's ok.. that's "my" belief.. so it must be ok for me to slam people that disagree with my beliefs... No? There is something wrong with that but there isn't something wrong with it when you do it? lol Now all of a sudden you can justify your behavior and call the same behavior wrong? You can't use the same moral measuring stick on yourself? You have to make up excuses to hide yourself? Ignorance SURELY is blissful... isn't it?

    June 29, 2011 at 4:03 pm |
    • what

      A lot of rambeling but very little sense. How about this: accept people as they are and let them have equal rights. You have no clue on what is actually right and wrong in terms of marriage. You and your ancient belief system which is just a mix of other mid eastern beliefs and myths, specifically those in the Mediterranean region.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:07 pm |
    • Manley

      I don't think you understood the article. The suggestion is that the philosophies of Christianity and objectivism are mutually exclusive. The article says nothing about the Truth of christian or objectivist claims. It simply points out that one cannot embrace both philosophies simultaneously. You absolutely have the right to believe what you want. But if you make a declaration and contradict it with another, it is the right of others to call you out on it.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:07 pm |
    • BobLoblaw

      I'm an atheist and I think that Rand's Objectivist philosophy is utter crap. An atheist of the secular humanism vein and an atheist of the Objectivist vein are about as similar as a bicycle and an octopus.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:17 pm |
    • Laughing

      Hey Buddy,

      Glad to see your back with the same post, just more words! First, since you said whatever arguement I make is right, that you'll agree with then: there is no god, jesus is a myth, santa DOES exist, ect, ect... Sorry, I just had to slip those in there.

      Back to the main point of your post, which I think if I understand you right your question is, "Why do atheist come to the *faith* based blog to chat about religion, or in your words, bash religion? It's simple, first you pointed it out yourself, atheism has a basis where they agree that god doesn't exist. Believers think that by pointing out that atheists have FAITH that god doesn't exist that it makes that idea moot because they have faith. Personally I don't understand why religious people think if they can make an atheist realize that he's as passionate about there not being a god as believers are passionate about a god existing it somehow makes them right, but there you go.

      Now to the crux of your dilemma, you see you seem to think that atheists come to this blog to bash religion and "shove our beliefs down your throat". Some may and do, but I would say most come to also chat about religion and ask the questions that believers don't, that's usually when the name calling starts because believers get up in arms when they have trouble answering the tough questions and accuse any unbelievers of being nasty and mean and trying to get them to stop believing in god. Since CNN among other org.'s have proven that atheists are the most well-versed in religion, might I, humbly, ask why religious people come to this blog to discuss a religion that clearly a lot (NOT ALL) don't understand themselves?

      June 29, 2011 at 4:19 pm |
    • Bubba

      Man, is this guy ever terrified of atheists. I bet one stole his wife or beat him to a promotion. Manley, he's not talking about the article and I bet he didn't even read it. He's just happy to have found another forum where he can try to cram his weird beliefs down our throats.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:26 pm |
    • CalgarySandy

      I am an atheist and I am very interested in belief systems. I studied European History at the Honor's and Graduate level and you cannot understand our history without knowing about what people believe in. You do not have to believe it yourself in order for you to understand it is required to understand what the populace believes. Fundamentalist Christians have a voice much louder than their actual numbers and they are responsible for way too much in social policy than is justified by their numbers.
      As long as religion exists there is a need to study it and follow it's changes.

      As an atheist I still have a "spiritual life" but it is not premised on there being a god or any kind of higher power. I am kind to the less fortunate for no reason other than I believe it is right. It is not to get brownie points in Heaven. I was raised a Baptist. This is why I hated religion for years. I got over it but I still think Fundamentalists are dangerous and, obviously, bigoted. Why "obviously?" Because they say only their path is true. That means no one else is on the path to truth. Because they are allowed to throw their weight around and insult and hurt other people but other paths are not allowed to have their say.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:54 pm |
    • oxymoron

      @Bubba, nice assumptions. I laff.
      @ Laughing, thanks for the somewhat decent response. It is far and few between.. look at the responses plastered every where on faith-belief posts by your brethren. What I'm referring to is the constant plausible deniability that goes on by atheists. They are right in their own minds no matter what is said/done.. even though the evidence of their own words are out there. It's hypocrisy. Do Christians do it to? Absolutely.. I don't deny that. But to point fingers at faith-based individuals and say they are wrong, slam them, call names, etc.. It is absolutely no different if I did the same pertaining to gay marriage. But when I do it, it's wrong.. when atheist do it, they justify their actions...hiding the fact of – plausible deniability.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:57 pm |
    • Manley

      @ Oxymoron
      What does any of this have to do with the article?

      June 29, 2011 at 5:08 pm |
  14. bachmanfoeprez

    ther is n conspeareicy by the libs to try to destroy the moril fabrec of our great usa. i would say to u to watch glen beck but they are after him too, listen to him he will tel u how they are doing it. Armegedon is neare.

    June 29, 2011 at 4:01 pm |
    • perfect

      Nice satire. i hope

      June 29, 2011 at 4:08 pm |
    • cheesemaster

      Nice try lefty faker. Go back to your HP where people will buy your shtick............and I don't even vote Repub but your act is weak.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:08 pm |
    • what

      whether or not this is satire or an actual opinon the sad this is that many right winger bible bangers actually think this way

      June 29, 2011 at 4:14 pm |
    • AKSean

      Sorry, but I am finding it impossible to decipher what you are trying to say.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:15 pm |
    • anon

      I'm not exactly sure that many right wingers feel this way, buy there are some vocal and popular figures who constantly are preaching a good vs. evil scenario, which makes having reasonable discussions with those types impossible

      June 29, 2011 at 4:16 pm |
    • exactly what i was

      Exactly, last night as I was driving home from a baseball game I was going through the am radio stations and there was a person on one of the stations blabbing about the end of times and all the signs and blah blah blah. Then that person laughed at the old guy in California who said the world was ending, when he was saying the same thing, except without the exact date.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:19 pm |
    • CalgarySandy

      Ya. If that is not satire, and not very good satire at that, then you got seriously ripped off at school.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:56 pm |
  15. ELE "Everyone Love Everyone"

    As a Christian I wouldn't compare Jesus the son of the living God with any person. And.. Just because you think some or a majority of Christians are bad doesn't mean we all are. Best wishes and may your eyes be opened to the truth that is in our lord Jesus Christ.

    June 29, 2011 at 4:01 pm |
    • CalgarySandy

      I don't think the majority of moderate Christians are bad. I admire them up to a point. When you stand up against the Fundamentalists who are giving you a bad name I will respect you and consider than you are actually trying to live like Jesus. How would Jesus, if such a person existed, like that millions of moderates hide their heads in the sand while a minority behaves badly? Having been raised a Baptist and reading the Bible every year and then studying it as an adult I know what Jesus was like and what he said as opposed to the dogma that has been created and plastered on him.

      June 29, 2011 at 5:02 pm |
    • WichitaThinker

      Calgary,

      Enjoying yours posts, as I think they make alot of sense. The Bible story that I think about most nowadays is Jesus storming the Temple and letting the moneychangers have it. If Jesus came back today and stormed the local bank branch and gave the same sermon/speech, most of the people calling themselves Christians today would call him a "lib" and lock him up. The vast majority of people who claim they are Christians today are truly not, as evidenced by this article where most of these same Christians are followers of Rand.

      June 29, 2011 at 5:32 pm |
  16. Jon

    The only "ism" that is we should all focus on is "HUMANism" Which deals with what is best for the entire human race. Regardless of what you believe or who you vote for, we are all human and our decisions should reflect how to improve the lives of every human on this planet.

    June 29, 2011 at 4:00 pm |
    • CalgarySandy

      Amen.

      June 29, 2011 at 5:03 pm |
    • You get my vote, but...

      ..you're talking too much sense. These hypocrites will only become more confused by your intelligent words and then their heads will explode.

      June 30, 2011 at 2:03 am |
  17. Michael

    Hmmm...............I don't believe in magic so take a freaking stab in the dark to which one I would follow.

    June 29, 2011 at 4:00 pm |
  18. Aezel

    [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pzoI0_IBpS4&w=640&h=390]

    June 29, 2011 at 3:59 pm |
    • The good people, atheist and religious

      How silly.

      Everyone please click 'Report abuse'

      June 29, 2011 at 4:06 pm |
    • Abuse?

      Why abuse, I liked it.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:33 pm |
    • CalgarySandy

      I thought I would fall off my chair laughing. Thank you. Please, don't consider all Canadians to be this ridiculous.

      June 29, 2011 at 5:12 pm |
  19. Rich

    Republican politicians are selfish atheists who pretend to embrace religion to manipulate the ignorant.

    June 29, 2011 at 3:58 pm |
    • Michael

      So only Repubs can be Atheists? Good job I guess all dems believe in magic.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:02 pm |
    • Bubba

      Aw, here we go again with Debate 101. Any statement that implies 'All A = B' is false if one exception exists. All swans aren't white, all Republicans aren't mean, and not all black people can tap dance. Learn the form before you dance . . .

      June 29, 2011 at 4:29 pm |
    • Angelique

      Bubba – do you really see a point in trying to teach these idiots logic? XD

      June 29, 2011 at 4:34 pm |
  20. RWESTUPID

    hmmmm....rational self interest versus delusional belief in pallid incompetence nailed to a tree. No brainer!!!

    June 29, 2011 at 3:57 pm |
    • Bruce

      I agree that those without brains would prefer to use anything to justify self-service, and then even make themselves feel better by sticking "rational" to the idea's label. Further, those who cannot appreciate the profound aesthetic of an ironically-creative act that consists of self-destruction lack any sense of subtlety and irony, which is an indicator of a lack of intelligence.

      June 29, 2011 at 4:11 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.