Yes, It Is A Religion

Thinking of Progressivism as a religion is useful, but it gets a lot of resistance from so-called conservatives. Talking about it as a cult gets even more push-back. The truth is, few liberals know much about why they believe what they believe. They just do and they don’t spend a lot of time examining it. That’s how religion works. Few Catholics understand why they take communion. They just do. The same applies to the Left, even more so, in that examining the faith is treated as heresy.

If you look at the most liberal states in the country, you find the lowest levels of church attendance. On the other hand, states with highest church attendance tend to be the least inclined to vote Left. For example, the last election featured six continental states where Obama won more than 60% of the vote. That’s California, Massachusetts, Maryland, Rhode Island, New York and Vermont. Everyone of those states, except Maryland, is at the bottom of church attendance numbers according to Pew.

At the other end of the spectrum, the states that went for Romney in the last election are Utah, Wyoming, Oklahoma, West Virginia, Arkansas and Kentucky. These are states with high church attendance. You have to get down to 20th on the church attendance list before you find an Obama state. Even if you assume religion is simply falling out of favor, traditional culture is also a good indication of voting habits. Steve Sailer tied together marriage and voting, which tracks close with church attendance.

If that’s not compelling, here’s a NYTimes profile of former Mayor Bloomberg.

Michael R. Bloomberg, making his first major political investment since leaving office, plans to spend $50 million this year building a nationwide grass-roots network to motivate voters who feel strongly about curbing gun violence, an organization he hopes can eventually outmuscle the National Rifle Association.

Mr. Bloomberg, the former mayor of New York, said gun control advocates need to learn from the N.R.A. and punish those politicians who fail to support their agenda — even Democrats whose positions otherwise align with his own.

“They say, ‘We don’t care. We’re going to go after you,’ ” he said of the N.R.A. “ ‘If you don’t vote with us we’re going to go after your kids and your grandkids and your great-grandkids. And we’re never going to stop.’ ”

He added: “We’ve got to make them afraid of us.”

That’s obviously insane. When you’re a billionaire, saying crazy things maybe makes you eccentric. If he was still hustling a sales route and was saying nutty things like this, they would lock him away. But, he is rich and he is a member in good standing of the Progressive faith. His fanaticism is therefore seen as a sign of his virtue.Again, that is how religions work. it’s about belief, not facts and logic.

Mr. Bloomberg was introspective as he spoke, and seemed both restless and wistful. When he sat down for the interview, it was a few days before his 50th college reunion. His mortality has started dawning on him, at 72. And he admitted he was a bit taken aback by how many of his former classmates had been appearing in the “in memoriam” pages of his school newsletter.

But if he senses that he may not have as much time left as he would like, he has little doubt about what would await him at a Judgment Day. Pointing to his work on gun safety, obesity and smoking cessation, he said with a grin: “I am telling you if there is a God, when I get to heaven I’m not stopping to be interviewed. I am heading straight in. I have earned my place in heaven. It’s not even close.”

That sounds a lot like a religious crusade. The reason it sounds that was is it is a religious crusade. In a difference age, Bloomberg would be wearing a black hat and reading the Torah all day. In a different place, he is a Zionist agitating for Israel. In a different America, most Progressive are Congregationalists or our preaching the social gospel as  part of their reform movement. Maybe they were heading out to Utah as part of a Mormon sect. Progressivism is the religion of this age.

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CaptDMO
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CaptDMO

Seems to me this was alluded to in Fiddler on the Roof Tevye: “…Cause if you’re rich they think you really know!” Make no mistake, I don’t hold the “rules” put fourth by holders of a Torah in any higher esteem than the Bible, Qur’an (sic), or NYT. IMHO, the Movie CAN be a valuable teaching tool, along with even “They Live”, and “Idiocracy”. For that matter, so can examining the religions of Wii and Xbox, Windows and Apple….. Wait…hmmmmm…Operating systems? File management protocols…? Y2K and Apps? Is there a potential “modern” political science/Sociology/Religion teaching tool there? I’m running out… Read more »

Art Deco
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Catholic Church attendance may have been injured by the scandals (church’s are noticeably sparser where I’ve lived than was the case in 1995), but frequency of observance began to decline more than 50 years ago, coincident with declines in attendance at protestant services. The decline has been more severe in the Catholic ambo, arguably because the Church imprudently mucked-about with its liturgy and daily disciplines, which other denominations did not do.

Art Deco
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What’s strange about this is that Bloomberg has to know that restrictions on gun ownership are a weak vector in the array of factors which influence crime rates (or, if you think John Lott’s research is correct, such restrictions actually injure public order). The fact that homicide rates in New York’s non-metropolitan counties average about 1.14 per 100,000 in spite of the popularity of recreational hunting therein should have given Bloomberg a clue. Posit this: journalists, college teachers, schoolteachers, social workers, and mental health tradesmen do not hunt or target shoot; they do not know anyone who does. They also… Read more »

Art Deco
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You’ve paid too much attention to Sailer. The black population of New York’s five boroughs declined by less than 1% over the period between 1990 and 2010 (while the ‘other and mixed race’ category went from five digits to seven digits). The most disorderly components of the city are the Ocean-Hill/Brownsville district and the Bedford-Stuyvesant district, which have homicide rates perhaps 10% higher than city-wide means in Rochester and Buffalo. There is no need to drive blacks from the city in order to improve public order. If you wish to improve public order, put cops on the street and allow… Read more »