Author Topic: One Nation Under God by Kevin Kruse  (Read 3833 times)

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Offline DaveTheReader

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Re: One Nation Under God by Kevin Kruse
« Reply #15 on: June 10, 2015, 07:13:37 PM »
My question would be, what is the best evidence for the conspiracy and the special ignorance/gullibility of Americans?  - Ah.hell

Did you want me to read the book to you?

The reason that I posted here is to see if anyone else read the book, or will read the book.

I am interested in alternate explanations to the plutocrat conspiracy as well as why people were gullible enough to buy into it. The propaganda techniques used depended on people without a sense of history and perhaps illiteracy. For instance, there was a time when the Declaration of Independence was used extensively. I got the Declaration and read it, some time ago, so, I re-read it. The propagandists only used the prologue of the declaration, ignoring the rest.

I will be interested to see what you have to say after reading the book. This is just the start of a discussion.

Offline Andrew Clunn

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Re: One Nation Under God by Kevin Kruse
« Reply #16 on: June 21, 2015, 10:49:12 AM »
Book just arrived yesterday.  I can already tell that I'm far from its target audience, but just wanted to let you know that I am going to see it through and try to give it an honest shot.
I'm just the victim of my cognitive privilege

Offline DaveTheReader

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Re: One Nation Under God by Kevin Kruse
« Reply #17 on: June 21, 2015, 07:20:33 PM »
Book just arrived yesterday.  I can already tell that I'm far from its target audience, but just wanted to let you know that I am going to see it through and try to give it an honest shot.

Drewish, good to hear that. At this time, I am the only one I know, who has read it, I would like to get some other opinions. Even the preface is useful.

Another idea which I read some time ago, is that Americans are more superstitious because of the weak social safety net in the US. People with a stronger safety net feel more secure and have less need for superstition. I don't know how you would prove that one. Since nearly all industrialized countries have a stronger social safety net than the US, that is consistent. People working in less secure professions, such as acting and professional sports, do tend to be more superstitious. Think Ronald and Nancy Reagan. Nancy used to consult astrologers regularly to help plan Ronald's schedules. Think about baseball players who always wear their lucky baseball cap or pair of socks.

Offline Andrew Clunn

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Re: One Nation Under God by Kevin Kruse
« Reply #18 on: June 21, 2015, 09:08:57 PM »
It does seem like the case is being made clearly that attempts to co-opt religious belief for pro-business attitudes and anti-state power ideologies.  However attempts are made all the time, and attempts to repeal the New Deal failed.  Sorry, just dropping some stream of consciousness thoughts here as I go, to give a more unfiltered reaction.  Not done yet (and I'm on baby duty tonight... happy father's day, so I likely won't be able to finish until next weekend).
I'm just the victim of my cognitive privilege

Offline DaveTheReader

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Re: One Nation Under God by Kevin Kruse
« Reply #19 on: June 23, 2015, 12:17:04 PM »
It does seem like the case is being made clearly that attempts to co-opt religious belief for pro-business attitudes and anti-state power ideologies.  However attempts are made all the time, and attempts to repeal the New Deal failed.  Sorry, just dropping some stream of consciousness thoughts here as I go, to give a more unfiltered reaction.  Not done yet (and I'm on baby duty tonight... happy father's day, so I likely won't be able to finish until next weekend).

The difference in the case Kruse is covering, is the amount of money involved. As you said, attempts are made all the time. Ah.hell made the same comment. So, what was different in the US? Why did the US go Christian while most of the industrialized world went secular? According to Kruse, regular church attendance was only about 19% of the population at the turn of the century. As the movement gained momentum, the New Deal eventually succumbed to the attacks. They used the US Supreme Court to stop the New Deal advances, We still have New Deal items such as Social Security, but US progress was stopped. For example, the US ended up with an overpriced health-care system while nearly every other industrialized country went to socialized medicine.

A related book is Crazy for God: How I Grew Up as One of the .. by Frank Schaeffer. He lived the times we are talking about. There is a lot of money to be made from religion. His father Francis Schaeffer and his mother, lived quite well from religion. Francis was a Bible literalist. How can anyone take Genesis as a historical account? There was a schism between the literalists and the liberals. Frank met many of the movers and shakers in the religion business, people who did quite well financially, like Billy Graham. The start-up money came from a few large donors. Frank made large incomes when he got involved in it as well. Frank isn't very clear about why he stopped, but there was a large financial difference from 'going straight'.

Who makes more money Joel Oerstein, Pat Roberts etc. or Jerry Coyne, Bill Nye, DM Murdock etc.? I think the answer is rather clear.

I have a friend who made money from religion. He knew Frank Schaeffer. There is money to be made in religion.

Offline Johnny Slick

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Re: One Nation Under God by Kevin Kruse
« Reply #20 on: June 23, 2015, 04:22:16 PM »
The quickest and easiest answer as to why the US has so much more religion than other countries is capitalism. We've never had a state religion so instead all of the competing sects of Christianity have had to advertise, sell, close, and otherwise do business-y things to attract congregants. It doesn't hurt that we also haven't really engaged in widespread religious war over here (you can *kind* of couch the American Civil War in religious terms but both sides were Protestants and ultimately the war was about nullifyng slaver, not religious doctrine) and don't have monuments reminding us that our ancestors died in droves in pursuit of religion. Also, there was a major religious revival in this country in the 1830s which is probably the real dividing point between us and Europe, much moreso than the end of World War II.
Speak what you think now in hard words, and to-morrow speak what to-morrow thinks in hard words again, though it contradict every thing you said to-day.

- Ralph Waldo Emerson