Whatever else Washington, D.C. stands for, it certainly stands as the center for mixing sex, religion and politics. Whether it’s brothels, hustlers, men’s rooms, escorts, mistresses or interns, it seems there is an unending supply of politicians willing to give the mix a vigorous stir. And, unlike their Liberal brethren, it’s the Conservatives who have the Bible in one hand and condoms (hopefully) in the other!
All of this was documented recently on The Rachel Maddow Show, home of the rising MSNBC broadcast personality who displays intelligence and awareness with her probing and incisive interviews. She recently devoted several segments of her daily cable show interviewing Jeff Sharlet author of The Family. This book exposes and chronicles the activities of Doug Coe’s C Street House and his fundamentalist Christian group tagged “The Family”.
“The DaVinci Code” and “Angels and Demons” move over. “The Family” has arrived..
As Maddow has discovered, today’s philandering Conservative politico isn’t the simple adulterer of the past. Twenty-first century cheaters must have God-driven purpose to their activities according to Coe, proprietor of the secretive Christian-centered C Street House. As leader Coe puts it, God wants “more power for the powerful.” And what better way for powerful Conservative male politicians to show their “manliness?” Well, that’s easy, fornicate with female staffers or wives of male staffers, hook-up with bathroom vice-squad operatives or underage Congressional pages or, of course, God-directed Argentine soul-mates. Obviously, Mr. Coe gives a whole new Christian meaning to the term, “Power to the people!”
And while sex-scandals are not the privy of one political party or the other, it’s definitely the Conservatives who want to be sure that they preach to others about living squeaky-clean Bible-centered lives while they pretend to be doing the same.
Additionally, It’s hard to imagine, for those of us living outside of the beltway, that it was only 30 years ago Republican lawmakers were condemning the benign, self-admitted lust of then President Jimmy Carter who revealed in a 1976 Playboy interview that, “Because I’m just human and I’m tempted…the Bible says, ‘Thou shalt not commit adultery.’ Christ said, ‘I tell you that anyone who looks on a woman with lust has in his heart already committed adultery.’ I’ve looked on a lot of women with lust. I’ve committed adultery in my heart many times…This is something that God recognizes, that I will do and have done, and God forgives me for it.”
So much for Democratic mixing of politics, sex and religion.
As we all know, Conservatives aren’t happy examining their own stream of consciousness, they would much rather stick their nose in everybody else’s bedroom business. And, they have been able to blend – unblinkedly – politics, sex and religion while diving to new depths of hypocrisy while promoting a fearful theocracy.
And, what is the new depth?
How about pairing Jesus Christ with Adolph Hitler? Shocking? Yes. But in Coe’s secretive C Street world that’s the price of a ticket in. If you are one of the 6 or 7 elected officials allowed to live in the million dollar -plus residence, at the monthly price of a nice YMCA room, you will be included in the weekly prayer meetings where you can counsel a fellow conservative politico on how to “overcome” his adulterous affair. And, if that doesn’t get you a front-row seat in heaven, then try mirroring the single-minded dedication of people like Pol Pot, Vladimir Lenin and Osama Bin Laden as you “hike the Appalachian Trails.”
According to Coe, these men, Jesus, Hitler, Lenin, et al, demanded that dedication to purpose comes before your mother, father, siblings and family. Therefore, in order to be a good disciple of Christ, you must be willing to “chop off the head of your mother.” An example of “dedication” cited by Coe in a speech admiring the martyrs signing up to do Osama Bin Laden’s work. And his conclusion? Even Jesus Christ demands that type of dedication from his disciples, according to Coe.
Whether it’s the benign lust of President Jimmy Carter or the redefining of sex by President Bill Clinton, human sexuality finds a way to bedevil even our highest elected officials. But we also know that a little lower down on the political food chain, Governors and Senators are sexual beings. The trail of lies traced to former Senator and presidential candidate John Edwards, mark him as a liar of horrendous proportions. However, Edwards spared all of us any God-connected family-values self-righteousness. And, last month’s revelations about South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford and Nevada Senator John Ensign especially makes news because these conservative Republicans found time, before and after praying, to pay, play and get laid.