Top Scoops

Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | Scoop News | Wellington Scoop | Community Scoop | Search

 

An Occasional Note on the Campaigns No. 14

Stateside With Rosalea Barker

An Occasional Note on the Campaigns No. 14

This Saturday, Senators Obama and McCain will each be questioned for an hour by the leader of Saddleback Church, Dr. Rick Warren, in Lake Forest, Southern California. The event will be carried live by CNN and Fox News, as well as being streamed live here at the Saddleback website.

The Saddleback Civil Forum, as it’s called, was described back in July in the church’s press release as “the only joint campaign event prior to each party’s national convention.” Since the two candidates will be questioned separately—Obama first, as decided by a coin toss—it’s difficult to see what’s “joint” about it, apart from the haze of fuzzy reporting surrounding the event.

Much of the fuzziness in any reporting about religious issues in the U.S. is the media’s loose interpretation of the word “evangelical”. Mainstream pollsters the media rely on for their reports lump mere “born-again” Christians in with evangelicals, according to the Barna Group--which has been conducting polls since 1984 in pursuit of its aim “to use our strengths in partnership with Christian ministries and individuals to be a catalyst in moral and spiritual transformation in the United States.”

As a result, those other polls and the media reports that stem from them are giving a distorted picture of what percentage of the vote Obama and McCain will get from evangelicals in November. Just this week, the Barna Group released a report of its own poll results using its more refined categorization of religious communities to dice and slice the numbers. The report can be read here.

All these efforts by the candidates to appear righteous at all times have me—for once—in agreement with conservative commentator George Will who said on last Sunday’s “This Week” that he wondered since when the President of the United States had also to be the nation’s pastor.

*************

rosalea.barker@gmail.com

--PEACE--

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Top Scoops Headlines

 

Scoop HiveMind Project: Universal Basic Income - Are We Up For It?

This is an opportunity for you as one of the 4 million potential funders and recipients of a Universal Basic Income to collectively consider the issue:
1. Is UBI is a desirable policy for New Zealand; and
2. How should a UBI system work in practice. More>>

ALSO:

Lyndon Hood: National Announces Plan To Hit Youth With Big Mallets

The National party has announced its youth justice policy, which includes a controversial plan for recidivist serious youth offenders to be hit over the head with a comically large rubber mallet. More>>

ALSO:

Lyndon Hood: This ->

It's been brought to my attention that Labour's new campaign slogan is "Let's do this". A collective call to action. A mission. I myself was halfway out of the couch before I realised I wasn't sure what it was I was supposed to do. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Hivemind Report: What New Zealanders Think About Affordable Housing

Ordinary citizens have had very few venues where they can debate and discuss as to what they believe has led to the crisis in affordable housing and how we might begin to address this. The HiveMind on affordable housing was about redressing the balance. More>>

ALSO:

New Hivemind Exploration: Opening The Election - Freshwater Quality

This is an opportunity for you as one of the 4 million guardians of our common water resources to help us find mutually agreeable solutions to the critical task of collectively managing these resources for health and sustainability. More>>

ALSO: