Sunday, February 20, 2011

Gordon Brown attacks ‘holier than thou’ politicians who claim religious sanction for their actions

It is not often that His Grace’s ashes roll on the floor laughing their ass off, or whatever the idiom is, but if reports of Gordon Brown’s sermon at Lambeth Palace are true, then Tony Blair was quite wrong to talk of Gordon Brown as merely lacking in ‘emotional intelligence’: he is has profound mental problems and suffers from psychotic delusions and thought disorders which suggest a degree of schizophrenia.

Apparently, Mr Brown delivered a sermon in the presence of the Archbishop of Canterbury, in which he poured scorn upon political types who have the audacity to make an appeal to sacred Scripture as the divine inspiration for political philosophy and praxis.

His Grace is honoured. An entire sermon, all crafted for him. Bless you, Mr Brown. Bless you.

The full speech may be found here. Highlights include:
"We know here in the West that what may begin as a benign attempt by a politician to explain their religious motivation too often ends with the spectacle of them hinting that God has sanctioned or ordained a course of action..."

"Whether in foreign affairs – perhaps hinting at a justification for weapons or a war – or in domestic affairs – perhaps justifying intrusive laws in deeply personal matters best resolved in the privacy of conscience and family. To claim or imply divine sanction for a political cause is wrong not just because it is politically unacceptable: it is wrong to me because it is religiously unacceptable too. We cannot claim that God is on our side: the most we can do is hope that we are on God's side."
There is, of course, some truth in this: despite how His Grace’s blog may sometimes appear, he does not believe that the creator of the universe is a eurosceptic Anglican Tory.

But what is the point of having a faith if it may not be invoked to justify political decisions?

If one is a Christian in politics, should one not try to do the right thing according to one’s conscience? And is that conscience not seared by the Word of God and illuminated by the Holy Spirit?

Abortion? Embryo research? Poverty alleviation? Housing the homeless? Fair taxation? Justice for the oppressed?

Alastair Campbell may have declared ‘We don't do God’. But, on leaving office, Tony Blair not only swiftly converted to Roman Catholicism; he admitted that his faith was ‘hugely important’ in influencing his decisions.

And so it should have been. The shame was that he chose to dissemble and deny; hide his light under a bushel, as it were; cram Jesus into a dark corner, for fear of being thought a ‘nutter’.

Perhaps with his predecessor in mind, Gordon Brown criticised those ‘pious politicians’ who assume an attitude of moral superiority:
"There is a genuine worry that people have about involving faith in politics; the dangers of an attitude of moral superiority, born of a 'holier than thou' stance or conviction.

"The suggestion that somebody is a more moral person simply by virtue of having faith or having a particular faith is, I believe, a perversion of the religious idea itself."

This is the man who 'did God' quite a few times when it suited him, with appeals to a 'Christian country', or appearances on Songs of Praise. And let us not forget the real reason (here, here, here and here) he invited Pope Benedict XVI to visit the UK during a general election year.

The Christian in politics is commanded to be salt and light; to live out his faith and witness for the truth in season and out. They can expect persecution, ridicule and scorn, including allegations of being ‘holier than thou’ and of perverting the faith.

It is bizarre that Gordon Brown, the son of a Presbyterian minister, should align himself with the aggressive secularists in censoring the Christian inspiration of morality and virtue in the political realm. At the very time when some minority faiths are flexing their muscles with impunity (indeed, being encouraged to do so), the Christians are manifesting shame, under the guise of humility, for fear of being accused of being a ‘nutter’ or of claiming ‘moral superiority’.

His Grace would like to remind Mr Brown that the Bible is the living Word of God and that Jesus is alive. If you wish to equate the greed of the bankers with the money changers in the temple, that is your prerogative as a believer. If you wish to talk of the markets or the environment with references to man’s stewardship over creation, that is your charge. If you wish to take the country to war to guard against the oppressor with references to the liberation of captives, that is your moral principle. If you wish to alleviate poverty, strengthen marriage and talk of the rearing of children with reference to your faith, that is your duty. If you wish to talk of sin, it is your obligation.

Appeals to the Christian inspiration of political philosophy and the formulation of political policy does not negate reason or circumvent the need for rational deliberation.

It is only the aggressive secularists and other anti-Christians who seek to persuade us otherwise.


Anonymous DanJ0 said...

Gordon has an article in the Indie today too. It has an open comments section if anyone fancies being rude to him.

20 February 2011 at 12:58  
Blogger Utar said...

Your Grace -

I don't quite share your surprise that a "son of the manse" is taking such a foolish stance antithetical to the (nominal) position expected of a Minister's son; birthplace and family are no guard against godlessness and stupidity.

After all did not 'the most wicked man in the world', Aleister Crowley, come from a Plymouth Brethren home


20 February 2011 at 13:02  
Blogger john in cheshire said...

I'm afraid that Mr Brown is too stupid and/or too warped to know when to keep quiet.

20 February 2011 at 13:09  
Blogger Alan Douglas said...

So sad Brown's "moral compass" pointed straight down, no, not south, DOWN to hell.

So sad for us, his victims, that is.

Alan Douglas

20 February 2011 at 13:28  
Anonymous len said...

God`s much maligned 'book' the Bible, is God`s Word, relayed through men for men.
The Bible is a Creators Manual for Life.It is a 'yardstick ' to measure truth and error.I suppose this is why the powers of Hell did all they could to prevent it being published or available to the man in the street.Well the enemy of mankind could not prevent the Bible being published so now he encourages those who pour ridicule and scorn on the Scriptures.You can measure the amount of a hold the enemy has over one by the how adversely he resists, and reacts to the Scriptures!

20 February 2011 at 14:44  
Anonymous DanJ0 said...

"Well the enemy of mankind could not prevent the Bible being published so now he encourages those who pour ridicule and scorn on the Scriptures."

Is this Gordon you're talking about? I'm not at all keen on the bloke but I think you're being a bit mean calling him that. :O

20 February 2011 at 14:51  
Blogger Span Ows said...

Great photo...not keen on Blair (the raging hate is mild compared to that for Brown) but in the image at the top of this photo he appears to be having thoughts similar to my own.

20 February 2011 at 15:34  
Anonymous Voyager said...

I think Gladstone was the giant of Victorian England because of his Christian Faith.......Gordon brown was simply a left-leaning student politician who wrote a Scrounger's Charter whilst at Glasgow University and replicated it on a grand scale as Chancellor.

Contrast with G Brown:

The Chancellor of the Exchequer should boldly uphold economy in detail; and it is the mark of a chicken-hearted Chancellor when he shrinks from upholding economy in detail, when because it is a question of only two or three thousand pounds, he says it is no matter. He is ridiculed, no doubt, for what is called candle-ends and cheese-parings, but he is not worth his salt if he is not ready to save what are meant by candle-ends and cheese-parings in the cause of the country. No Chancellor of the Exchequer is worth his salt who makes his own popularity either his consideration, or any consideration at all, in administering the public purse. In my opinion, the Chancellor of the Exchequer is the trusted and confidential steward of the public. He is under a sacred obligation with regard to all that he consents to spend.

* Speech at Edinburgh (29 November, 1879).

The rule of our policy is that nothing should be done by the state which can be better or as well done by voluntary effort; and I am not aware that, either in its moral or even its literary aspects, the work of the state for education has as yet proved its superiority to the work of the religious bodies or of philanthropic individuals. Even the economical considerations of materially augmented cost do not appear to be wholly trivial.

* Liberal Manifesto, September 1885.

But let the working man be on his guard against another danger. We live at a time when there is a disposition to think that the Government ought to do this and that and that the Government ought to do everything. There are things which the Government ought to do, I have no doubt. In former periods the Government have neglected much, and possibly even now they neglect something; but there is a danger on the other side. If the Government takes into its hands that which the man ought to do for himself it will inflict upon him greater mischiefs than all the benefits he will have received or all the advantages that would accrue from them. The essence of the whole thing is that the spirit of self-reliance, the spirit of true and genuine manly independence, should be preserved in the minds of the people, in the minds of the masses of the people, in the mind of every member of the class. If he loses his self-denial, if he learns to live in a craven dependence upon wealthier people rather than upon himself, you may depend upon it he incurs mischief for which no compensation can be made.

* Speech at the opening of the Reading and Recreation Rooms erected by the Saltney Literary Institute at Saltney in Cheshire (26 October, 1889)

20 February 2011 at 15:41  
Anonymous Seumas McCoo said...

Many Manse Brats have a difficult relationship with the faith in the same way that many Rectory ones do. Brown has made several different comments about the Faith.

When he spoke to the General Assembly about 1998 I read the comments that he was telling the Fathers and Brethren that it was their faith not his. Subsequently he seems to have embraced the faith more and more.

20 February 2011 at 16:12  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You Grace, Can you please ask Mr Brown if he could possibly help the people of Kirkcaldy, he never has a surgery or even bothers to vote in parliament on important issues.

If he can't help, then he should let someone else do the job, it's really not fair. He's not the PM now, so I would think he'd have the time to help.

Thank you.

Top o the toon lass, KDY

20 February 2011 at 16:36  
Anonymous Michal said...

"But what is the point of having a faith if it may not be invoked to justify political decisions?"

You're kidding me, right? When is Cranmer going to start up a British Taliban and fight for a more religious tomorrow with weapon in hand?

20 February 2011 at 16:41  
Blogger Bred in the bone said...

[It is not often that His Grace’s ashes roll on the floor laughing their 'ass' off]

YG I never thought you would succumb to Americanisms.

I believe the Bible to be a written word designed to guide you towards the living word, which is your armour within.

"There is truly a gospel in all this, teaching us never to forget that though the outer side of life may seem dull and heavy, there is always the Divine fire glowing within."-Charles Webster Leadbeater

20 February 2011 at 16:57  
Anonymous Ernst Stavro Blofeld said...

Voyager said 20 February 2011 15:41

Voyager, Voyager. Your talents are wasted here..I repeat my offer again' but let me first get the formalities out of the way.

Voyager, I like the 'Cut of your Gib', Sir/Madam.

As I have experienced some unfortunate mishaps to several of my operatives, I am now in the position to be able to offer a post requiring intellect, keen cunning and a 'way with words' in a fast moving international organisation.

Do you like glamorous foreign 'Babes/Guys', traveling to exotic places, intrigue and espionage etc.

Well then, SPECTRE might just be for you?

I am truly enchanted with your approach to (trying to?) educating some of the miscreants on show here. They display their meagre understanding of life and their only purpose appears to be to look forward to their next dollop of plop from braindead British tabloids.
SPECTRE has more to offer than this!

I eagerly look forward to you expressing interest in SPECTRE'S offer, which you must not refuse..RSVP


Ernst X


Operative Hobgoblin Scaramouche 0666 aka Bred in the bone, nice to see you back online, suitably chastened I trust, after trying to trick me into enhancing your pay through the cunning use (I admire this but not when tried against myself) of various apparitions.

Please subjugate the 'Height challenged individual' as it has annoyed several in HR that believe the midget's talents would be better served by some fellow called Mike Myers.

Your Supreme Leader

20 February 2011 at 17:06  
Blogger English Pensioner said...

I'd be interested to hear his views on Islam and Islamic States!

20 February 2011 at 17:07  
Blogger Bred in the bone said...

Supreme Leader said..."Please subjugate the 'Height challenged individual' as it has annoyed several in HR that believe the midget's talents would be better served by some fellow called Mike Myers."

Your wish is my command Supreme Leader!

20 February 2011 at 17:25  
Blogger Jared Gaites said...

When People start saying things like "the bible is a manual for life", then this is when my heart skips a beat or two at suggestions about policy formation based upon Christian philosophy. I will concede that there are real and beneficial things such as Christian morals and virtues, but they have not always engaged the collective consciousness when humanity has perpetrated gross acts of inhumanity against itself in the past. There needs to be a secular balance to all things if we are to ever learn from the past.

There are people who are deeply anti religious, and specifically anti-Christian, and who do manifest many of the symptoms that indicate chips on the shoulders and psychological axes to grind with either the church, or indeed God Almighty itself. Such secular concern only obfuscates the geology of the religio-political landscape.

There was an excellent article in last month's copy of the Humanist which outlines the need for open and calm debate, with both sides accepting and respecting each others stand point. Religion, and faith are not going to go away and fade into the background of any future society, if anything, faith is going to increase across the spectrum of religious belief.

I cannot say, if I am to be honest with myself, that I know what sort of world/society we would have if it had not been shaped by the Christian religion and culture, in spite of all the horrors and indeed "SIN" that spewed out its hatred and black-hearted evil upon the world at times. But it has to be conceded that we do have a morality of sorts, that may or may not be hard to codify in any written or tabled fashion, that has provided us with a tangible base of morality and virtue. Regardless of what we know about the historical nightmares enacted in the name of God and Christ, we have made giant leaps forward into a better and civilised society and transcended much of the old notions of sin and punishment.

I am no longer a Christian, if indeed I ever was, but I can accept that it is my heritage and culture, and I am happy to live in this country (just about) as a Christian nation so long as we can agree that we are a diverse society and that many of us do not have faith in any God that resides in any book, therefore it is only right and proper that our democratic right to be free from the shackles of religious dogma is recognised and respected. A mutual respect. That is all I would ask for.

20 February 2011 at 17:40  
Anonymous Voyager said...

Many Manse Brats have a difficult relationship with the faith

Douglas Garven Alexander was born in Glasgow, the son of a Church of Scotland minister, Douglas N. Alexander, and a doctor.

Wendy Alexander (born 27 June 1963, Glasgow) is a Scottish politician

James Gordon Brown the son of a Church of Scotland minister, In April 2009, Brown gave what was the first ever speech by a serving Prime Minister at St Paul's Cathedral in London. He referred to a 'single powerful modern sense demanding responsibility from all and fairness to all'. He also talked about the Christian doctrine of 'do to others what you would have them do unto you', which he compared to similar principles in Judaism, Islam, Hinduism and Sikhism.

20 February 2011 at 17:43  
Blogger Jared Gaites said...

An interesting, but not altogether related thought that I often entertain is the idea of our genes having code in them. I am more than comfortable with the science and theory behind evolution, and I can see the logic in the evolutionary process and the way we have evolved from the most fundamental of organisms.

I have explained that I am not someone who accepts that Jesus was the son of God, or that we as a race of beings are in need of redemption from any original sin, but it is fascinating to wonder about this code that exists in our genes. I am happy with the idea of natural selection and how the survival of the best model would have had the better chance to out-do its competitors and the best of the modified mutations would be the code that survived and redeveloped up to the modern day.

I can appreciate that the fundamental scientist would not entertain any notion that the code in human DNA could have divine origin because of the fact that it has evolved from the most basic of organisms. And for me to suggest that although I do not believe that Jesus was the son of God, I could imagine (and it is only imagination at this stage) that people like Jesus are natural consequences of the human DNA which would have been coded to produce such an outcome for the human race. A fundamental scientist would say that DNA has evolved through the process of natural selection, but there had to exist a first set of codes to begin with, and what is wrong with the idea that this code included all the necessary information to evolve the human race?

Therefore, Jesus is a coded response, a natural product of the human condition which was coded into the very first simple organism that gave birth to the entire range of life forms on the planet. The God of the universe therefore had it in mind that we would experience the numinous, and thus, eventually, transcend the animal and become the virtuous and moral creature that we seem to be shaping. So, not, maybe, the son of God, but a natural and coded evolutionary and preordained entity. Therefore, we could say (albeit based upon a bottle of the finest port) that our Christian virtues where potentially coded into the very first organism that went on to produce the human race.

Maybe, hic!

20 February 2011 at 18:24  
Anonymous Anguished Soul said...

Poor old Gordon. He is determined to keep himself in the public eye. Whatever will he do next?

wv: squiti

Seems very apt!

20 February 2011 at 18:29  
Anonymous Oswin said...

Whadya mean, God ain't a ''...eurosceptic Anglican Tory'' ???

Dangerous talk Your Grace; can it be that you have forgotten the smell of wood-smoke in the morning?

To be fair to you, God probably favours UKIP these days.

20 February 2011 at 18:34  
Anonymous len said...

One doesn`t have to be that enlightened to look at Humanity and see that something has gone wrong, terribly wrong.
Just the notion that there is a right and wrong is an indicator of a Creator who made the original blueprint.Jesus Christ came to Earth to show what God`s original idea was,how man was created, how man was intended to be,man created in the image of the Creator,to reflect the attributes of God.
See how far man has fallen?How debased humanity became when they decide to go with the madcap idea of separating from the Creator?
Mankind aligned himself with the god of this World,who perverts and distorts all that God made good.That is the image portrayed in man today and the image Jesus Christ came to put back into the original order,to put man back into God`s original intention.

20 February 2011 at 18:42  
Anonymous Ernst Stavro Blofeld said...

Bred in the bone 20 February 2011 17:25

Operative Hobgoblin Scaramouche 0666, Excellent response.

Perhaps I should have employed more of your ilke from Rochdale?

I was wondering where the unemployed Chanteuse 'Jared Gaites' might be loitering and as if by magic!

Dear Chanteuse,

We at SPECTRE have long been admirers of your ability with loose women, such as the 'Jordan/Price' floosie types.

I therefore have an offer for you, to put your miscreant talents at the disposal of an organisation that rewards loyal adherents with maintaining their daily ability to eat, drink and breath, so long as they do as SPECTRE requests.

Your time as a choirboy will not be held against you and will indeed be quite useful to help infiltrate a certain religious organisation based in Rome. I trust you appreciate the advances of men old enough to be your father?

Please try to keep the singing to a minimum as we would prefer for you to maintain your current low profile in the music industry. We can use this rebuttal from your musical peers and the cogniscenti to our advantage.



20 February 2011 at 19:36  
Anonymous Ernst Stavro Blofeld said...

Anguished soul 20 February 2011 18:29

I could not help but notice your 3 man boob nipples prior to the word, squiti.

Is that you Scaramanger?


How apt indeed, Francisco, old friend.

If you are not Francisco Scaramanger or intended recipient, please delete this comment. Your life may depend upon it!


20 February 2011 at 19:46  
Anonymous Hans Wildebeest said...

Please don't give this miserable creature any further publicity.

20 February 2011 at 19:48  
Anonymous Ernst Stavro Blofeld said...

English Penshioner said 20 February 2011 17:07

Mine or Archbishop Cranmer's, old chap.

Yours ever so insincerely


20 February 2011 at 19:49  
Blogger Jared Gaites said...

Hey Blofeld

I can't find a video of His Grace's demise at the stake, but HERE is a video for you to reminisce over -it's the bit where you get dumped down a chimney stack by 007 in For Your Eyes Only. AHHHHHHHHHhhhhhhh!

20 February 2011 at 20:35  
Anonymous Ernst Stavro Blofeld said...

Archbishop Cranmer said

"It is not often that His Grace’s ashes roll on the floor laughing their ass off" (Or mine {courtesy of Bond}, when he once suggested SPECTRE allow him to be the next IMF Managing Director, replacing Dominique Strauss-Kahn, I nearly choked on my Stinger cocktail. Even I am not that crazed, Cranmer. We prefer an operative who knows a few things about monetary matters. I have not accumulated my ill-gotten gains for some joker with a permo smile to squander it as he did yours!! )"

You further state;

"Apparently, Mr Brown delivered a sermon in the presence of the Archbishop of Canterbury, in which he poured scorn upon political types who have the audacity to make an appeal to sacred Scripture as the divine inspiration for political philosophy and praxis." (He turned out to be a most defective operative for us and we were especially delighted he got the 'Heave-Ho' from the public..Saved us from a high profile liquidation. Thank Goodness for the fickle amongst you!).

"This is the man who 'did God' quite a few times when it suited him, with appeals to a 'Christian country', or appearances on Songs of Praise."
You may be surprised to learn from SPECTRE, that at one stage he actually thought he WAS God. The 'I saved the world' moment, we called it!

"It is bizarre that Gordon Brown, the son of a Presbyterian minister, should align himself with the aggressive secularists in censoring the Christian inspiration of morality and virtue in the political realm. (LISTEN Carefully. He was a SPECTRE Operative. End of!) At the very time when some minority faiths are flexing their muscles with impunity (indeed, being encouraged to do so), the Christians are manifesting shame, under the guise of humility, for fear of being accused of being a ‘nutter’ or of claiming ‘moral superiority’ (I am unqualified to comment on this, Cranmer, I am simply a Meglomaniacal Genius. FIN)

Do you all really believe that his mishaps, public and private, were all down to the blundering fool.

Thank you SPECTRE??? would not go amiss, you ungrateful lot!

The humble observations of a Meglomanical Genius.

Trust this helps with your appraisal of Operative loonytoon 2,334,403, in-joke at SPECTRE..YOUR NATIONAL DEBT.


20 February 2011 at 20:44  
Anonymous Ernst Stavro Blofeld said...

Chanteuse Jared Gaites 20 February 2011 20:35

Let me enlighten you, my delightful little miscreant.

IT IS FICTION. Do get a life, other than what Albert R Broccoli and Harry Saltzman promote to you on the big screen?
There's a nice boy.

Besides, super villains ALWAYS use body doubles, dear boy! We never 'Buy It'.

The offer still stands, my girlie voice warbling child, for the time being.


20 February 2011 at 20:52  
Anonymous non mouse said...

Thought provoking, Your Grace - from the picture and throughout the commentary!

My first problem lies in deciding which of the photo-characters is Mephistopheles; because that would determine whether one is Dr. Faustus or the other is .... of the altogether lower order (based on the descent depicted by Milton, in which: the higher they fly, the lower they fall].

Which puts me firmly in Len's camp on the responses. "In the Beginning was the Word" then springs to mind - and partly in reaction to Michal, who seems not to appreciate Your Grace's monumental contribution to the deployment of words in that Cause. Perhaps (s)he may be living up to the name that questions: "Who is the Lord?"

Otherwise, I take leave to ponder on your post.

20 February 2011 at 21:28  
Anonymous not a machine said...

Your grace poses somthing of a challenge as in trying to answer I found myself in a number of professions and hat wearing scenarios. I can only type from a first person perspective in that gods forgiveness and love is often so close a relationship to a persons life , that using a broad brush does a diservice.
I admitt I have been/am a sinner although it took the working of time for a correct evaluation of my own sin to occure , never the less to this day I find it impossible to explain what forces were getting me through the door of the church.
Guilt perhaps is not irrational , social exclusion does not really cover it.If christ came for the sinners of this world , then I fail to see why politicans or bankers are somehow free to be populist charlatans , duping people into losing there own lives for theres.
That is what on reflection is rather troubling about how/why the conservatives found themselves in the wilderness in 1997 and we had 13 yrs of showmanship/legal doctorine , jealousy , vying for power , ultimately poisening the political system , creating an underclass and near bankrupting the country . I would think the somewhat bruised Ken Clark may be puzzled having handed one of the most promising set of books over to labour in 1997 , to look out upon the Landscape left and wonder if others should not have made John Major a saint in that election.
Gordon Browns wife wishes to inform us that we all misunderstood him and he was creature of poor circumstances and ill ecnomic winds . Well had they not had the most non stick of pms and press weathermaker in Mr Campbell (and we now hear the 10k a week Andrew Marr at the BBC). What is there to misunderstand , so we come to Mr Browns view on religion , poltics perhaps does create people who prefer religion as a foot stool to the spells of media consumptions and total theatre control, the person is different in both composition and outlook.
Position in life is perhaps the use or loss of god given talent , as we know though socialism takes little account of god given talent and procures the propogandist to fend off I presume vying propgandists , which of course is why every socialist construct ends up making fools of there people with a survelliance state and fear and corruption.
The bible perhaps tells us much about about how intricate and fine , gods imagining of us is , and how the lessons of failiures should make clear why jesus is gods one and only son .

I do not expect the god /no god argument to go away , but being as the next version of socialism will probebly be based on a whole new load of untruths , they must feel rather dissapointed that there are just somthings that are imutably gods and not legislated by man .

20 February 2011 at 22:59  

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