The "Genius" and "Christianity" of Ted Cruz
A quick statement about Ted Cruz
It's been over two weeks since Ted Cruz announced his official entrance into the presidential race. I've been wanting to get to this sooner, but Cruz just keeps the fodder flowing.
He contradicts himself so often he's become a human ouroborus, consuming his own feet so rapidly that he's in imminent danger of collapsing into a singularity of stupidity. Here's to hoping he sucks the rest of the tea party ilk into his event horizon, where they're almost guaranteed to never return.
I may be running weekly updates until his campaign eventually does compact into a black hole of political suicide.
Or maybe not. We'll see; I am a creature of caprice and prolonged negativity wreaks havoc on my psyche. *Sigh* Being a liberal is a thankless, maddening task.
Is Ted Cruz even eligible to run for president in your humble but correct opinion?
Rafael Cruz, father of the hopeful
This isn't about birthism - I don't care that Cruz was born in Canada to a Cuban father (I'm amazed the Right doesn't, but that's really neither here nor there). His mother was an American citizen and somehow that makes him one too. Fine. The Obama birthers made, and are still making themselves out to be the biggest idiots on Earth simply because they won't let it go. If the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over expecting a different result, those clowns deserve a padded cell in Arkham Asylum between the Joker and Two-Face.
But no, this is about Ted Cruz' father, a man who stood on the side of Castro in revolutionary Cuba, later became a big oil shill and now serves as a self-appointed evangelical spokesperson.
This is a list of some of the wackier things Pastor Cruz has spouted with some personal commentary thrown in:
- Back to the birther movement, the elder Cruz had this to say about our current president: "We need to send Barack Obama back to Chicago. I'd like to send him back to Kenya, back to Indonesia." This, of course, was voiced at a Texas Tea Party gathering, the people behind the move to add Moses to the list of Founding Fathers in Texas history textbooks. It's a birther comment because the "back" in the statement implies that Obama is from Kenya, which has been the nut job contention for years. The Indonesian thing delves even deeper into loony land - certain factions on the Right are convinced that Obama's real dad is actually Muhammad Subah, an Indonesian "cult" leader.
- On the liberal media: "They just tell us what they want us to hear. They are re-writing history...because they have an agenda. And unfortunately the agenda is an evil agenda. It's an agenda for destroying what this country is all about." Yes, because all members of the liberal media secretly want the US to become something akin to an Islamic state where the needs of the religious few are given precedent over women, gays and other people not like us. Oh, wait. That would be Republicans.
- On the socialist plot that is gay marriage: "Socialism requires that government becomes your god. That's why they have to destroy the concept of God. That's what's behind homosexual marriage.It's really more about the destruction of the traditional family than about exalting homosexuality, because you need to destroy also loyalty to the family." Other than "huh?" all I have to say about that is it speaks for itself.
This is not to say that Ted Cruz thinks exactly like this - though by all indications it seems he does - but the axiom of the apple not falling far from the tree comes quickly to mind.
Cruz and elitist hypocrisy
Because I seem to have a masochistic streak, I'm on the Ted Cruz campaign's email list.
This was part of the Cruz statement in his email yesterday begging for money:
"Make no mistake: There is a large contingency who want to see me fail, and I'm not just referring to the Liberal Elite."
"My Republican opponents who have not yet announced are just as eager to see me fall short."
There are two thing to take away from this:
- There is a liberal cabal out to get him.
- Even certain segments of his own party don't think very highly of him.
But I want to address his use of the word elitist, first by back-tracking to the 2012 presidential campaign and a statement made by one-time front runner Rick Santorum in response to Obama's statement that he wanted all young people to have a beyond high school education. Santorum replied to this by referring to Obama as "a snob," even though Obama wasn't saying he thought everyone should earn an advanced degree in quantum physics or deep philosophy. Those fell under the umbrella, but so did vocational training. Obama didn't differentiate between Ivy League and ITT, but Santorum made it sound like he wanted to create an army of highly educated thought assassins.
I personally think Republicans are anti-education because the more people know, the more they are likely realize that the Right are simply the tools of corporations and the rich placed in power to financially pillage the common man and keep our current trickle up economy in place.
But I digress.
To refer to anyone as an elitist is hypocrisy of the highest degree in the case of Cruz. Why? Because when he was in law school, he refused to be a part of any study group that did not consist solely of graduates from Harvard, Yale or Princeton. Even so-called "Minor Ivies" like Penn or Brown were beneath him. That is the very definition of elitism.
The many contradictions of Ted Cruz, real and imagined
The meme above appeared on Facebook March 26, 2015. There is no proof Cruz made either statement and the entire controversy has been chalked up to hyperbolic fantasy. The thing is, it could very likely have been factual, simply because Cruz contradicts himself on a regular basis.
Not that people aren't allowed to change, but public figures are under a special scrutiny and when they're on the same end of the spectrum year to year, their attitudes should stay fairly consistent. Here are some of his whoppers:
- In 2009, Cruz argued in favor of giving federal stimulus money to retired Texas teachers, saying it "will directly further the greater purpose of economic recovery for America." His opinion on it now that he's running for president has taken a distinct reversal. He now calls Obama's economic policies "yet another rehash of the same big-government stimulus programs that have consistently failed to generate jobs," conveniently ignoring the fact that unemployment rates have dropped drastically since Obama took office.
- Back when he was a humble lawyer of the people, Cruz won $54 million for a man who had been raped in a group home (I'm not saying that's bad) and he said, "a large punitive damages award is justified by the need to deter conduct that is hard to detect and often goes unpunished." Fine. Admirable, even, yet he has now stated he's in favor of expanding Texas tort reform that caps damages at $750,000 to the rest of the US.
- When working on a Supreme Court case that investigated the wrongful death sentencing of a Louisiana man, he said that prosecutorial misconduct undermined "public confidence in the criminal justice system. But he recently said, "I trust the criminal justice system to operate, to protect the rights of the accused, and to administer justice to violent criminals."
Cruz is not alone in his hypocrisy; just about any politician can be caught doing the same thing, like Miit Romney being adamantly anti-Obamacare during his presidential campaign even though the program was based on his own policies during his tenure as governor of Massachusetts. But a line needs to be drawn and I think it should start with Cruz.
(Thank you to Andy Kroll and David Corn of Mother Jones)
Ted Cruz and Religion
In Des Moines, Iowa, Cruz said, "We have never seen an administration with such hostility toward religious faith," a statement made in reference to the current executive branch.
While the following indictment is not specific to Cruz, he definitely falls into category of Christian-in-name-only. I've already written several articles on this subject (beginning here), so I'll just summarize.
Cruz is a staunch Republican, which translates as lover of the monied and a worshiper of mammon. Christ called for the rich to give money to the poor, yet the "Christians" in congress do all they can to ensure that money stays where it is, in the hands of the very few. Again, an example of the elitism Cruz so vehemently decries.
He has been very vocal in his support of Indiana's "Religious Freedom Restoration Act," which simply gives "Christians" the legal right to discriminate against anyone they don't agree with. Translation: to discriminate against homosexuals is now protected under the law in Indiana.
Yet nowhere in the Gospels (the only books that contain alleged direct quotes from Jesus) is homosexuality mentioned directly. The only indirect allusions Christ makes to it are in his admonishments to "love thy neighbor as thyself" and "judge not lest ye be judged."
The only condemnation of a gay lifestyle in the New Testament comes from Paul in his first epistle to Timothy. Paul is also the one that modified Christ's commandment to feed the poor to disclude those not able or willing to work. Modern Christianity owes far more of its tenets to a murderer of Christ's followers than to the Man himself.
Cruz considers himself a Southern Baptist. the religion that brought us the KKK. I'll leave that to your own pondering.
The number 1 reason Cruz wins the tin foil hat award
In reference to his denial of human-accelerated climate change, Cruz compared himself to Galileo, the man who was persecuted until his death for his Quixotic pursuit of the truth in the face of Church-based thinking that insisted the world was flat, calling those who believe in climate change "flat-earthers."
The problem is, he has the analogy completely backward. The "denialists," those big oil shills who are desperate to keep the money flowing in and retain their economic power, are the so-called "flat-earthers." It's the climate scientists and big brains like Neil deGrasse Tyson who deserve the comparison to Galileo for their dogged pursuit of the truth in the face of criticism and name-calling by the primarily Religious Right, who seem to have it in their heads that God gave humans the Earth to do with as they please. Which apparently includes raping it to within an inch of its life.
Mr. Cruz, you sir are no Neil deGrasse Tyson.