So is this girl hedging her bets or throwing away the chips? For one thing, she ain’t gonna worry about it. I wonder if she’s still going to do Christmas this year?
I recently was sent a link on YouTube by a friend of mine who wanted my opinion of a video he’d seen of a young Muslim man, Mohammed, from the Muslim American Society – New Jersey Chapter. Mohammed was doing his best to assert his Islamic pride while at the same time introducing Islam as a welcome norm for the West to get used to (it seemed for an American audience in particular). He spent the first part of the video doing his best to dispel stereotypes. Fair enough. Good on him. I have no problem with that. Kudos!
Then Mohammed tries to give us a fake history lesson. Straight out of the propaganda style book.
If you don’t have much of a background in history you just might buy into this guy’s cheerleading tactics. C’mon, Mohammed seemed like a nice enough, normal kind of guy. The video was okay when he was just simply telling us what he personally believed in. Hey, we all have personal beliefs. But then he started getting into a chant, or a rant, I am not sure which, in the middle of the video when he gets into this swell of pride over a false history. Man, I just hate that kind of thing to tell the truth. (I mean, for instance, didn’t many cultures more ancient than Islamic tradition as well as less ancient than Islamic tradition also create great architecture?)
So you have a reference for the rest of the post, I supply the video below:
Now let’s skip to the part where young Mohammed (I know this is late in the post but I hope I got his variation of spelling correct – if no, my apologies) starts to name the litany of Arab (Arab, not Muslim per se – though Mohammed claims them all for “Muslims”) achievements. (Please note that I am paraphrasing Mohammed’s assertions so that it makes sense in the context. Also, for a point of reference, Mohammed’s prophet, Mohammed, was born around 570 AD – nearly six hundred years after Jesus Christ. Keep that in mind when I give you the below assertions.)
“We invented astronomy…
I am sorry, Mohammed, but you Muslims did not invent astronomy. Let me ask you, what about Stonehenge, which roughly predates Islam by about 3700 years? What about early Mesopotamian (Sumerian, Babylonian, Chaldean) astronomy? Greek? Egyptian? Mayan? Persian? Incan? Indian? Nubian? Aztec? Even Chinese astronomy predates the birth of your prophet Mohammed by 1700 years. I beg very much to differ on this point.
“We invented calligraphy…”
Wrong again my friend! Hindu calligraphers were already carving calligraphy into stone about 300 BC 0r nearly 900 years before Mohammed was even born. Imperial Chinese calligraphy began about 100 years later but it was descendent from ancient Chinese calligraphy which no one has really been able to trace its origins because it is so damned old. But let’s not even talk about these Eastern traditions. Let’s move west closer to were the Arab culture comes from. Phoenician calligraphy predates Islam. Etruscan calligraphy predates Islam. Greek calligraphy predates Islam. Roman (Latin) calligraphy, which was a late comer to this group, can be traced to 600 BC – about 1200 years before Mohammed was even born!
“We invented geometry…”
The earliest recorded beginnings of geometry can be traced to ancient Mesopotamia, Egypt, and the Indus Valley from around 3000 BC, oh, say about thirty-six centuries before Mohammed was born. The earliest known texts on geometry are the Egyptian Rhind Papyrus and Moscow Papyrus, the Babylonian clay tablets, and the Indian Shulba Sutras, while the Chinese had the work of Mozi, Zhang Heng, and the Nine Chapters on the Mathematical Art, edited by Liu Hui. Euclid’s classic Elements was written around 300 BC, nine tenths of a millennium before Mohammed was born. Need I go on here or do you get the point?
“We invented algebra…”
Wrong again! Arabs were a beneficiary of their location, in a round about way, as Algebra’s origins can be traced to the ancient Babylonians, who developed an advanced arithmetical system with which they were able to do calculations in an algorithmic fashion. The Babylonians developed formulas to calculate solutions for problems typically solved today by using linear equations, quadratic equations, and indeterminate linear equations. The Greeks studied this form of mathematics and the Arabs learned it in the Middle Ages via the Greek heritage left by the Byzantines, who they had recently conquered in the Fertile Crescent and Egypt. And in fact, even the first treatise in the Arabic language, from where we do in fact get the word “algebra” from (al-jabr in Arabic; it means “reunion”), was written by a Persian mathematician, Muhammad ibn Musa Al-Khwarizmi, not an Arab. This man is often considered the “father of algebra”, though he did not personally invent it in any way, shape or form.
“We invented the modern numerical system… (Not the Greeks, but Muslims!)”
I don’t know who said the Greeks gave us the modern numerical system. I must have missed that somewhere. But nonetheless, these symbols passed via the Arabs from the northern Indians. They were not invented by the Arabs, but rather only altered. The modern numerical system today, which we do refer to as Arabic numerals, in fact are not the same numbers that are used by Arabs themselves (look at any Arabic text book to suss this yourself) but rather a European modification of these Arabic numerals which in turn are themselves a modification of the older Hindic numerals from which the Arabs borrowed their own system.
“It is pronounced ‘Iss-laem’, not “Iz-lam”…”
First of all, young Mohammed repeated this twice – which the second go round he pronounced it how? “Iz-lam”; exactly the way he just told us indignantly not to pronounce it. Secondly, Mohammed is speaking North American English here, not Arabic. Don’t correct how Americans and Canadians might pronounce foreign loan words in our own language. Otherwise I would have the right to go nuts in Cairo, Dubai or any other Arabic speaking community when they (constantly) mispronounce English words that they have adopted as loan words into Arabic. The point of how a North American pronounces a foreign word is mute. Try going to the root pronunciation of all of the borrowed words that can be found in a King James Bible. There are hundreds of examples of Hebrew, Chaldean and Greek words that have a much more bastardized pronunciation that “Is-laem” to “Iz-lam”. And even in the Arabic language itself there are variations of this word which means there are even Arabs who don’t pronounce “Islam” the way that you do.
Come on, give me a break, Mohammed…
Now, I challenge anyone to put what I have said above against what Mohammed says in his propaganda video. Don’t take sides right away. Look up what I have written here. Compare it. Challenge it. Research it. You will find that obviously our friend Mohammed of the MAS New Jersey Branch just bought into bullshit that Arabs and Muslims have been peddling about their history of achievements for a long, long time. I don’t believe Mohammed made this up. I believe he believes every word of what he said, hook, line and sinker of this faux histoire. He’s probably been told this by “his people”. The longer I live the more I see “alternative histories” in subcultures – some more true than others. But a word of advice to Mohammed and the Muslim American Society, New Jersey Chapter…
If you are going to insist on extolling your culture and creating grand illusions of your past in propaganda meant for the masses, do your best to check the facts or someone will bust your balloon like I just did.
Next thing you know Mohammed will be telling us Islam is the “religion of peace”…
One of the most outspoken critics of Islam around the world these days is a Canadian man, Ali Sina, who is formerly a Muslim himself. He runs the Faith Freedom International movement. Ali Sina has some highly controversial positions concerning Islam and American president Barack Obama as well and he has recently come out with a book, Understanding Muhammad, which continues to stir things up. I found this man to be extremely provacative as well as interesting so I asked him for an interview so that he could share his own insight as to what Islam is at base and what is going on in the world today. The communication flowed as follows…
Gary Dale Cearley: Could you let us know a little about yourself and your background?
Ali Sina: I was born in a Muslim family. Today no one in my immediate family is a Muslim and I know that many of my extended family that is still living in Iran, like most Iranians, have either left Islam or are in the process of doing so. Many Iranians have just ceased to believe in Islam.
Since childhood, injustice harrowed my soul. I became vegan because cruelty pains me. Scenes of cruelty affect me profoundly. They still do, as they did when I was a child. Many young people react to injustice by becoming revolutionaries. They choose violent means to combat injustice and hence bring more injustice and violence to the world. I prayed to become an instrument of peace. To bring love where there is hate; understanding, where there is confusion; peace, where there is discord. That was of course all wishful thinking, when I myself was confused, trapped in a bubble of lies.
I pondered upon injustice and I believed it is caused by greed. Later I came to understand a lot of evil is committed, not because of greed, but because of belief in evil doctrines. To quote Blaise Pascal, “Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction.”
When I read the Quran, the whole meaning of Pascal’s words became apparent. It was then that I decided the time for prayer is over and now is time for action. Of course this awakening did not happen overnight. It took me two years of study, inner fight and soul searching. I was taken from denial to shock, and then to guilt and to confusion, to depression and to anger and finally to enlightenment, awakening, forgiveness and inner peace. It was an arduous odyssey, but worth making.
I started writing about my findings on the internet and more enlightened ex-Muslims joined. Our little trickle became a torrent and now we are a movement, bringing about a silent revolution, not with violence and bombs, but through understanding, through explaining the unexplained and through spreading knowledge.
We have helped thousands of Muslims who were filled with hatred of the non-Muslims to discover the fallacy of Islam and join the rest of humanity in amity. My childhood prayer has come true. I have become an instrument of peace and I am not alone. We are now a legion that has risen to demolish the darkness of ignorance with the light of knowledge.
Gary Dale Cearley: You have written a book, Understanding Muhammad: A Psychobiography of Allah’s Prophet. Tell us about it.
Ali Sina: The book, as its title says, delves into the motives behind the actions of Muhammad. Muhammad is an enigma. He did many things that make one believe he was sincere. He gave the impression that he believed to be a prophet of God, while at the same time he was ruthless, cunning, and evil. So how can you explain this oxymoron? Was he a liar? If so how could he be so convinced?
In my book, Understanding Muhammad, I give a brief account of his biography. Muhammad’s life story is covered in many books and one can learn it from original sources called Sira. The concern of my book is the psychology of Muhammad.
Understanding Muhammad does not focus on “what,” but rather on “why.” Instead of narrating what Muhammad did or say, it explains the mental impulses that led him to act in the way he did.
I have shown that Muhammad suffered from a series of morbidities, mental, and personality disorders that collectively explain the phenomenon known as Islam. Once you understand the psychological makeup of Muhammad and the milieu in which he operated, you’ll come to see that phenomenon of Islam was inevitable.
The book does exactly what it claims. It makes the reader understand Muhammad and Islam. It has received encouraging reviews. Sam Vaknin, the author of Malignant Self-love wrote, “Understanding Muhammad offers an explanatory scheme. One “a-ha” moment chases another as things fall into place and a causative chain emerges leading all the way from medieval founder to his current day followers and emulators.” Once you read the book, you’ll not only understand Muhammad, but Muslims too.
This book has been read by many Muslims, who first wrote to me to prove I am mistaken. I challenged them to read the book and now many of them are my strong allies. I believe once the insight that this book offers spreads, Islam will become history and with it Islamic terrorism will ceases to exist.
Gary Dale Cearley: As you have become apostate in the eyes of Muslims, I am interested in what kinds of threats have you had from the Muslim community and from where have the threats come?
Ali Sina: When you leave Islam threats come from all directions. Your apostasy offends every Muslim who will each attack you in their own way. Some Muslims want to kill you but not every Muslim is a murderer. Those who do not issue a death threat snub, pity you, vilify you. I was informed that there are two fatwas to kill me from two mullahs in India. There was also price put on my head: One million rupees. This is only $20,000 dollars. I was a bit disappointed. I thought I am worth more, but hey, it is more than 30 silver coins for which Christ was sold.
Gary Dale Cearley: What changes have you undergone within your own family since you renounced Islam?
Ali Sina: Not much really. My family was not fanatical. We were among those deluded believers who think Islam means peace and the terrorists have got it all wrong. It was quite a surprise for me to read the Quran and see that it was we who got it all wrong and the terrorists are just doing what a good Muslims is supposed to do.
The majority of Muslims belong to this category. They are deluded and think Islam is peaceful. They condemn the so called extremists. However, the truth is that the extremists are the ones who understand Islam best and the moderate Muslims don’t. They believe in a benign form of Islam that is made up by them and has nothing to do with the Islam of Muhammad.
Gary Dale Cearley: Are you open with Muslims about having turned your back on Islam as a religion?
Ali Sina: I am not in contact with them anymore.
Gary Dale Cearley: If you could come face-to-face with Osama Bin Laden and Ayman Al Zawahiri, what would you like to tell them?
Ali Sina: I don’t have any message for these beasts. My message to all Muslims is that Islam is a lie and they should not kill people or sacrifice their own lives for a lie. Not all Muslims are terrorists, but they all harbor distrust, if not hatred of non-Muslims, to the extent that they practice Islam.
Islam is a faith that is built on the hatred of the enemy. Without an enemy Islam loses its raison d’être. A good example to make is what happened recently in Iran. Ahmadinijad, the man who stole the elections appointed [Esfandiar Rahim] Mashai, a relative by marriage, as his vice president. Mashai’s nomination angered the hardliners and Khamanei was forced to humiliate his own handpicked and protégée president and order him to dump Mashai. Why? Because last year Mashai said, “Iranians are friends of all people in the world — even Israelis.” He was serving as vice president in charge of tourism and cultural heritage at the time.”
By making this comment, even though he really did not mean it as he is part of the Islamic regime and shares the same hatred of Israel, Mashai had undermined the legitimacy of the Islamic republic that is founded on hatred and needs perpetual enemies to sustain itself. Not only that, he also undermined the legitimacy of Islam that is founded on hatred of non-Muslims and particularly the Jews. Islam needs enemies to survive. The hatred must be kept alive. Sigmund Freud wrote in Civilization and Its Discontents, “It is always possible to bind together a considerable number of people in love, so long as there are other people left over to receive the manifestations of their aggressiveness”
Muslims are united, as long as there are non-Muslims to hate. But once among themselves they will start fighting over who is a true believer and will target their hatred towards those who interpret Islam differently. As long as Islam is believed to be a religion of God the hatred will continue and the killing and wars will not end. So, really there is no other option but to expose the fallacy of Islam and wean Muslims from Islam.
This message cannot be heard by hardened terrorists. This message is for ordinary Muslims who don’t know the truth about Islam who will be shocked to learn it. This mass of moderate Muslims is the backbone of Islamic jihad. The Jihadis come from these very ordinary Muslims and are supported by them both morally and financially. If we can make these Muslims see the truth Islamic terrorism will end.
Islamic terrorism is the fruit of Islam. It’s the tree that has to be eradicated. As long as the tree is in place it will continue to produce bitter fruits.
Gary Dale Cearley: How has the non-Muslim community accepted you?
Ali Sina: There is no problem with the non-Muslim community. Non-Muslims do not have the concept of “us vs. them” that is so intrinsic in Islamic psyche. I live in Canada. We are a nation of immigrants. We are all equals and asking someone about his or her religion is considered to be rude. No one cares what you believe. In Canada I am just another Canadian.
There are Muslims who feel alienated in Western countries. That is because they choose not to integrate. They want to wear their backward Islamic clothing, cover their women in black bed sheets, eat differently, act differently, think differently and denigrate the culture and the country where they live. It is natural not to be accepted if you are obnoxious. We have large communities of Hindus and Sikhs in Canada that are fully integrated, and are the backbone of the Canadian economy while Muslims, coming from the same neck of the woods, do not integrate. It is their fault that they do not integrate. Western countries are open to all and sundry and people here are not prejudiced. They are learning to dislike Muslims and who can blame them?
Gary Dale Cearley: What advice do you have for Barack Obama and other leaders of Western nations in dealing with radical Islam?
Ali Sina: My advice to Barack Obama is to pack up and seek refuge in Kenya before Americans discover you are a fraud and a traitor.
This man is on a mission to destroy America. Polls show Americans are waking up and are realizing the big mistake they have committed. Obama is in office not because of his merits, but because of the white guilt. He hated America all his life. Tell me who are your friends and I will tell you who you are. Who were the friends of Obama? Jeremiah Write, Bill Ayer, Louis Farrakhan, Rashid Khalidi, Tony Rezko, and a bunch of other goons!
Who were his mentors when he was growing up? The pedophile Frank Marshal Davis and the black supremacist Malcolm X! I do not give advices to the enemies of America.
However, if America had a legitimate president, my advice would be ban Islam and make the practice of Sharia illegal.
During the Cold War America banned communism because communism was a threat to the Constitution of America. President Truman introduced the Federal Employee Loyalty Program (FELP) in 1947 aimed at combating security risks from working for the Federal Government. Every person taking on a new job in the civil service or government had to be investigated.
Congress set up the House Committee on Un-American Activities (HUAC) that investigated Communist involvement in the film industry, education, unions and the government. A couple, Julius and Ethel Rosenberg were convicted of espionage and selling nuclear secrets to the Russians during the WW2 and rightly were executed. Yes, excesses were also committed. But it is a mistake to condemn America’s resolve to fight against its internal enemies because of those excesses.
Maybe because of those excesses Americans have become guilt ridden to the extent that they have lost the will to defend their country in the face of a real threat. Remember how Pakistan got its nuclear bomb? It was because Abdul Qadeer Khan, a Muslim, was allowed to join the staff of the Physical Dynamics Research Laboratory (FDO) in the Netherlands and from there he stole the technology and went back to Pakistan to build the “Islamic bomb.” Muslims allegiance is only to Islam. You cannot trust them in sensitive jobs.
This July the Islamic extremist organization Hizb-ut-Tahrir, (Liberation Party) hosted its first organized conference in the United States, titled “Fall of Capitalism and Rise of Islam.” The conference, attended by 700 people, was hosted in Hilton Hotel in Chicago. Amazingly Hilton rejected an event featuring Geert Wilders, the Dutch parliamentarian that is fighting against Islamic expansion in the Europe. The goal of Hizb-ut-Tahrir is to overthrow the governments of the world and establish the Khilafat, allegedly through non violent means. This group is banned in most Islamic countries, but it is allowed to operate in the USA and to openly promote the abolition of the American Constitution.
These people are right here in America and are given full immunity to plot the destruction of America. If there was a patriotic president in office, I would have told him to ban all Islamic groups that work against America and its constitution. But we don’t have a patriotic president. We have a racist man who hated America all his life and is doing everything he can to weaken its Judeo-Christian base and open the floodgate to Muslims. His bow and genuflection to the Saudi King, the head of the Wahhabi school of Islam should tell us everything about where Obama’s loyalty lies.
Anyone with commonsense knows that Islam is in war with America. What does Obama do? He appoints two devout Muslims to Homeland Security Posts.
Arif Alikhan is a devout Sunni Muslim. As assistant secretary for the Office of Policy Department of Homeland Security, Mr. Alikhan was instrumental in taking down the LA Police Department’s plan to monitor its Muslim community. He is affiliated with MPAC, the “Muslim Public Affairs Council”. This is like putting the thief to guard the money. Americans must prepare themselves for more terrorist attacks and the responsible is no one but Obama and of course every one of those people who voted for this traitor.
Now, I don’t blame Obama. He is doing what he had dreamt to do since his youth and that is to destroy America. My wonder is at Americans who have handed their country to a buffoon enemy. Obama is not an intellectual. He is stupid. Obama lied and he deceived the masses of the gullible people. That is where narcissists excel. They are charming and convincing liars. We all commit mistakes. But why now that the truth has come out and it is clear that this impostor is working against America he is not sacked? Obama is not a legitimate president. Don’t let the biased media fool you any more. Facts are out there for those who care to study them. Obama should be brought to justice, tried and preferably electrocuted for high treason.
Anyway, back to your question: America has to confront Islam, recognize it as a hostile ideology and educate the public of the threat that it poses.
Gary Dale Cearley: Lots of people, from the man on the street to sociologists to politicians, have expressed concern regarding the growth of Muslim immigration to the West. Should they be concerned and if so what concerns should they have?
Ali Sina: Yes, they should be concerned. Muslims are not like other immigrants. They do not want to integrate in your melting pot, but to conquer the country through demographic and warfare. Let us hearken to Omar Ahmad, Co-Founder of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, who said
“Islam isn’t in America to be equal to any other faiths, but to become dominant. The Koran, the Muslim book of scripture, should be the highest authority in America, and Islam the only accepted religion on Earth…”
Thomas Richards of Spiritually Smart, whom I have questioned in past posts as having been intellectually stupid on his support of an idiotic conspiracty theory, has recently changed his tune on our good old neighborhood cult leader Bernie Hoffman, er…, Tony Alamo, who is facing a plethora of federal charges back in Arkansas mostly stemming from issues revolving around child molestation allegations. Thomas Richards put the “I ain’t the one to blame” back peddaling in his statement when he used an interesting, almost non-committal choice of words: “…it seems I was wrong…“
It seems you were wrong…? Only seems that you were wrong?
Well, Thomas, it more than seems that you were wrong. In fact, you’ve been looking cheesy on this one, and many others, for a while.
Unfortunately, Mr. Richards tends to favor making such errors in logic and common sense when it comes to the fringe of whacky religious groups and conspiracy theories. Just have a look at his website or YouTube channel and you can see that if there is a pothole full of goofballs in his path he’s sure going to fall in. The crazier the conspiracies are are the more our boy Thomas tends to gravitate to them. But Tommy isn’t satisfied to simply hover around like a moth magnetized by a burning light bulb though. No, Thomas Richards thinks it is somehow his job to bring people closer to the mindsets of these morons like Tony Alamo and Alberto Rivera. It is sad, to tell the truth, at how whacked out and cuckoo Thomas Richards likes his gurus.
Each to his own I guess.
But Thomas Richards tried to appear to do the honorable thing by publicly admitting that it “seems” he made a mistake, you say? I would love to give Thomas Richards lots of kudos for admitting this mistake, this gross error in judgment, but when I read back over his many web postings and YouTube videos, many with himself being the sole narrator, and am forced to ponder at how Thomas Richards defended these creeps for so long I really get the distinct feeling that the proverbial shit has hit the fan, the inevitable has set in, and our boy is only trying to distance himself from the splattered stench. When taking into consideration the fact that Thomas Richards whole heartedly supported this goon Tony Alamo for so long and that he has the same steadfast support for the religious fraudster Alberto Rivera who’s main testimony concocting the Vatican Islam Conspiracy is published in a comic book that has been thoroughly and utterly discredited by, you guessed it, research into history, well, ya gotta just wonder where Thomas Richards’ head is. I for one don’t have to wonder so much about where Thomas Richards’ head is because I have seen the muck he’s been spewing out over and over.
Want a hint?
Okay, here’s a big hint…!
What an odd question, I know…
Some time back a friend asked me this question over a few beers. “Don’t answer it now!” he told me, “Just think about it for a while.” I have to be honest about it. I didn’t think about this question for some time. Until last week that is.
I had some free time to reflect about things for a few days as the family was away visiting more family. I found myself in front of a clean notebook with three pens: one black, one red and one blue. I thought to myself that such a question comparing organized religion to organized crime would be a given – organized religion would win out. So I wrote down on one column all of the positives of organized religion. Then on the other side of the page something quite strange happened. I told myself that I would brainstorm all of the positives of organized crime, and guess what? I came up with as many good points to organized crime as bad points. So then I decided that I would do the opposite and write down all of the bad points of organized crime on one side of the paper and see if I could match the bad points of organized religion on the other side of the paper. And I could.
Before this creates a moral vacuum or a philosophical conundrum I just want to be clear. I am not trying to state that organized religion is bad and that organized crime is good. In fact, I am not saying that I have become neutral on either subject. I am just saying that all the evidence gleaned from this exercise just supported the notion that there is no black and white.
So now I ask you for your own answers. Which is worse (or better)? Organized religion or organized crime? What say you?
“The secret of being a top-notch con man is being able to know what the mark wants, and how to make him think he’s getting it.” Ken Kesey
This is one sentence by Ken Kesey is possibly the best quotation I have ever seen regarding con men and how they operate. This also holds true, I have seen, with the conspiracy theory crowd, whether it be with Alex Jones, David Icke or the likes of the religious conspiracy ilk.
People who are familiar with my any of my blogs or my books will know that I spend considerable effort debunking these bogus myths thrust upon the masses by what I like to call the “Cons-Piracy Mafia“. My first book even dealt directly with all the points that one religious fraudster, Alberto Rivera, claimed in his Vatican Islam Conspiracy. But since the book’s publication in 2006 I have had lots of mail from people condemning me for debunking Rivera and the shots over my bow mainly come from the direction of the very dupes who refuse to even open the book. When I consider who my main critics have been over these years it becomes extremely apparent that Jack Chick and Alberto Rivera are giving their audience what they want to see and hear: That the Roman Catholic Church schemed to create Islam in order to subjugate true Christians.
I can’t but help see the psychological parallels in those who follow these conspiracy theories and the victims who get caught up in the Nigerian 419 advance fee scams (as I am currently reading McMafia by Misha Glenny.)
In each case the victims were drawn closer and closer into the scam until in many cases they have allowed themselves to be fleeced of all their money and then some. Of course, in the case of the Nigerian scams people put this crime down to greed but it goes to a level even beyond. You see, the greed in the 419 scam comes from both sides, from both the perpetrator and the victim as well. And I find that this is exactly the same when we look into conspiracy theories. Both the originator of the theory as well as the follower are both “believers” in conspiracy. The follower, the more they are drawn in, become increasingly self-delusional in their acceptance of the lie. The followers begin to lose their free will to judge in these matters, much like a hypnotized person, like the proverbial zombie.
This is definitely true in the Vatican Islam Conspiracy, though I believe that the roles of Alberto Rivera and Jack Chick were initially quite different. Rivera on one hand, I believe was actually a scoundrel. Rivera found the audience and spun the tales to suit what the audience hungered for. It could be very possible that he suffered the fate of many habitual liars – that Rivera eventually began to believe his own lies. Jack Chick on the other hand, in my opinion, was one of the zombies. Chick was predisposed to the type bullshit that Rivera was selling because it fit in with his theological beliefs that were already in place. Chick was a willing dupe who has in turn become the vehicle of this lie.
Part of the art of spinning these conspiratorial tales is the ability of throwing out facts, quasi-facts and disinformation in a way that is either very difficult to check, beyond the education and background knowledge of the audience or preferably both. The well spun conspiracy yarn is certain to leave their heads in a spin. A general feeling of doubt is created from which distrust of the truth in general is created and the Cons-Piracy Mafia feeds on this scenario. For example, think about the last time you watched a movie such as JFK. For the casual viewer so many facts were thrown out to the viewer as “true” that even a clear headed person would be likely to leave the cinema with no idea of what really happened in the assassination of John Kennedy, but he would be fairly convinced that there was indeed a government cover up.
And the people who went into the movie already expecting a government cover up? Well, the got what they paid for!
I believe in free speech and free self expression. People have a right to believe in what they want to believe in. But at the same time, in a libertarian way of looking at things, it is always wrong to try to force your beliefs on someone else. You don’t have too far to look to see that the world is full of this today.
My first book, Thou Shalt Not Bear False Witness, was written not to achieve any kind of best seller status and to make me famous. It was written basically because there are scoundrels out there who create false histories all of the time and try to pass this off as a “hidden” truth. A truth that the “powers that be” want suppressed. They decorate their story in so many “facts” that there is no way you can sort through it all unless of course you do what I did and sit down and hash out the story line by line. Then you see it is all a big lie. But these window dressing stories tend to be far too big for average people to investigate. We aren’t all history professors and most of us don’t have the time to go into all of the assertions and assumptions that these scoundrels make. When the scoundrels are secular figures like David Icke with his reptilian theories then it is easier to brush this off and get on back to work.
But this isn’t always the case.
In many of these cases the purpetrators are non other than the ministers in churches. Most of these guys pass on this bunk because it’s been passed on to them by people they have trusted. They are like the rest of the community. Not social scientists and not history professors. But where these stories start are almost always in the imaginations of people who’s intent is not so good. They tend to be megalomaniacal and use these stories to pull their flocks in further. In the case of Alberto Rivera he was just on to the next gig. Then you get the likes of the empire builders like Tony Alamo. And these guys have a lot to answer for with the trash they put out, trying to mix it with religion to lead people off track. As their tenticles spread out they surround themselves with apologists and dissiminators such as Jack Chick and Thomas Richards who act more like attack dogs and in my opinion are just as dishonest, even though they have been dupted themselves.
I have been working on a report on how to spot these guys. I may post it on my website or I may make it into and e-book or e-mag. It won’t be near long enough to be another book project as it doesn’t need to be but it will be an easy enough document to follow so that it will be simple to spot who the crazies are out there. It will be out soon. And I promise to make this as informative as possible.
I have gotten to know Kurt Kuersteiner a bit over the past few years. I first met him when I was interviewing him for my first published book Thou Shalt Not Bear False Witness: The Truth about the Vatican and the Birth of Islam. Kurt is a very interesting character if you ask me and he is well known in the “Jack Chick” circles. Kurt is the author of an exceptionally well done anthology of Chick Publication works The Unofficial Guide to the Art of Jack T. Chick: Chick Tracts, Crusader Comics, And Battle Cry Newspapers and he directed the documentary God’s Cartoonist: The Comic Crusade of Jack Chick, which I found engrossing. I have copies of both the book and the film. Kurt is an adjunct Communications professor in Tallahassee Florida, where he also publishes entertainment trading cards for Monsterwax.
Kurt and I approach Jack Chick in very different ways. Personally I don’t care what he puts in his tracts about sin in and of itself – it is when Chick tries to glaze over historical fact to promote his own point of view that I get bent out of shape with him. Kurt, on this other hand, sees Jack Chick as a cultural phenomenon that deserves respect for his work and his accomplishments. Or at least this is my understanding of Kurt’s point of view. You can see for yourself what he has to say.
What is it that you like most about the Chick Publication tracts and what got you to research your book?
It is inspiring to me to see a writer try to get his message to the masses, and without the help of any corporations or political party or even organized church, he is able out-publish everyone else! What is especially interesting is that his message is so politically incorrect, and if anything, the corporations, political parties, and (the majority of) organized churches have tried to marginalize him. Yet there is his, an underground cartoonist with his vision, who engineered a crusade that catapulted his work around the world and made him the most published author alive today. Chick has printed over 800 million tracts and is still going strong. That is a testament to creativity, determination, faith in the product, and the American dream. It proves that unconnected individuals can still succeed in this country if they work long enough and hard enough.
Personally, which do you like better, the Jack Chick style or the Fred Carter style?
I especially love Fred Carter’s art. It’s beautiful. He’s one of the best comic artists around and he’s very versatile. Too bad he’s ignored by both ends of the comic book business because the corporate side can’t hire or exploit his talents, and most of the customer side thinks he’s a square since he’s a fundamentalist. Even if most people disagree with his beliefs, they should still recognize his artistic talent and respect his willingness to give up so much in order to promote his faith. Interestingly enough, most my artist friends prefer Chick’s art, because his style is so distinctive and retro. Together, the two artists make quite a team!
Do you think that it is possible to be a fan of Jack Chick and disagree with what he is trying to get across? Is it possible, for instance, to be a secular art collector who appreciates the work but remains untouched or unchanged by the message?
To the first part of your question, the answer is definitely “yes”. I know all sorts of gays, Catholics, Jews, Rock and Roll fans, Witches and even self proclaimed Satanists who love collecting Chick’s tracts. Some feel it’s a guilty pleasure and others rationalize that his conspiracy theories are so extreme, that they only encourage the opposite view. Several of these Chick critics/ collectors wrote reviews for my book, so I know he has fans who love his product but hate his message.
When you ask if it is possible to remain untouched by his message, of that I am less sure. I suspect the more people collect his work and appreciate his talent, the harder it becomes for them to hate everything he represents. In other words, it tends to soften them to Chick and his message over time. They may still remain a gay Satanist Rock and Roller, but when their pals come around with a truck and baseball bats and want to go crack some Christian heads (to use a Chick analogy), they become less inclined to join the fun. It’s much easier to hate a group when you don’t actually know anyone in that group, yet everyone who reads Chick can’t help but get to know him after a while.
I look at the tracts and the comics as totally different kettles of fish because I think more often the tracts are aimed at a specific “sins” or “lifestyles” whereas the comics tend to tell “untold” histories or present conspiracies to the reader. Most of these subjects are quite controversial. How much research into these subjects do you feel that Jack Chick would have done before producing the tracts and comics?
The tracts are different from the comics, as you point out, but the comics tend to split up into two different groups as well.
The comic books remind me a lot of the TV show The X-files, but instead of agent Mulder and Scully, you get Tim Clark and James Carter, aka “The Crusaders”. Remember how there were two different types of X-files episodes? The first type was the conventional monster-of-the-week (M.O.T.W) tale, where Scully and Mulder track down the vampire or Mutant on the loose. With the Crusaders, that monster is Satan in the guise of some evil villain or cultural vice.
The earlier X-files M.O.T.W. stories were the episodes that got the public hooked, because they had the most action and eye candy. The same goes for The Crusaders. The first eleven comics have Tim and James dodging bullets, racing cars, and escaping other violent entrapments (thanks to the power of prayer) and always saving the day (or non-believer) by the end.
Later on, the X-files created a different formula, the conspiracy episode, which featured less action but put more emphasis on mystery and intrigue. So did The Crusaders. The basic difference was that while Agent Mulder and Scully got information from Deep Throat (a former insider) who tattled about the ongoing UFO conspiracy, The Crusaders listened to Alberto (who was said to be an former Jesuit) explain the vast Vatican conspiracy. The general public was less impressed when both series got deeper and deeper into the conspiracy plots, but the hardcore fans loved it.
Ironically, Deep Throat was shot in Mulder’s presence for revealing the truth in the X-files. And someone actually shot at Alberto Rivera in Chick’s presence (in a drive by situation) in real life. Year’s later, Alberto died of colon cancer, but he blamed it on a special poison given to him by an undercover Catholic. (I think I hear the X-files synthesizer playing now!)
Regarding Chick’s research: Chick’s background was in acting. He graduated the Pasadena Playhouse just after fighting in WW2. He likes drama so sensational plots are a natural attraction to him. That being said, he also feels constrained to tell the truth as he sees it. He believes in a living God who intervenes in our daily lives, which many Christians also believe. Where he differs is that he also believes in a real Satan, and that the devil ALSO intervenes in our daily lives. (Many Christians say they believe in the Bible but don’t actually think the devil is real.) This is why Chick is so suspicious of conspiracies, because it only stands to reason that the Prince of Lies would use conspiracies to promote evil, corrupt popular culture, and turn people away from the true Word of God (The Bible).
Chick reads his King James Bible, and sees how modern translations keep watering it down with newer and looser language, until they get to the point where certain churches want marry gays, and another wants to make Mary a “co-redeemer”. Chick sees these beliefs as blasphemies and proof of a Satanic plot to undermine Christianity from within. Now some may believe its just a coincidence that our culture, our government, our schools, and even many churches are working together to lead society further and further away from traditional Biblical values, but Chick and his supporters find that too hard to swallow. They recognize these changes as being orchestrated by activists, factions, unions, and special interest groups who have a progressive agenda. Chick and fellow fundamentalists believe that agenda is evil and inspired by Satan to turn the world against God. (You can choose not to believe it, but you can’t say that it doesn’t make sense.)
Like any good lawyer, Chick sets out to research and gather information that supports his position. He’s not interested in proving the other side’s case, so he only includes info that supports the fundamentalist view. He’s used different sources in the past, and some of them are quite controversial and shaky. However, David Daniels, the man who currently helps Chick write tracts (and numerous books), is a good researcher who knows how to document his sources. Daniels has a Masters of Divinity from Fuller Theological University and is well trained in the Bible and linguistics. So basically, it appears that Chick is responding to criticism that his claims have poor sources by bringing people like Daniels on board. Whether that helps him win more of his cases in the court of public opinion remains to be seen.
Do you have a favorite tract or comic (or both)? If so, which ones and why?
My favorite tracts are Wounded Children (about homosexuality), Angels? (about Rock and Roll), Satan’s Master (about witchcraft), Lisa (about child molestation), and Dark Dungeons (about role playing gamers). The main reason those are my faves tend is a combination of the sensational plots, the cool art, and, I confess, the fact that they are all out of print and rare.
My favorite Chick comic is Spellbound. It’s an action packed tale revolving around John Todd’s testimony about the Rock and Roll industry being run by the Illuminati. (Alberto later co-opted this claim by saying the Vatican controlled the Illuminati.) Spellbound has a pretty down beat ending too, with only a Pyrrhic victory, since one of two main characters is murdered before he can convert, and the news media compare the Christians to Nazis when they burn the Satanic Rock and Roll records.
On a happier note, John Todd’s character (Lance Collins) is saved from being shot in a drive by attempt, something that John Todd claimed happened to him in real life (but Chick did NOT witness that situation). These sure aren’t your average comic books!
My good friend Thomas Richards is at it again! I have recently learned that he has labeled me on his website as a “Jesuit Coadjutor”. If you’d like to see for yourself have a glance down the lists on the left hand side of this page.
The Merriam-Webster Dictionary lists two definitions of this word:
1) One who works together with another: assistant
2) A bishop assisting a diocesan bishop and often having the right of succession
The word comes from the Middle English coadjutour. And before that from the Anglo-French which in turn is from Late Latin coadjutor (Latin co- + adjutor helper, from adjuvare to help).
So obviously, since Thomas Richards says it this must be true! The simple fact that this guy would write such a thing has me baffled, but again, it proves my point. These conspiracy theory folks, the people who actually listen to the likes of Alberto Rivera and his fraudulent ilk, will themselves say and believe anything.
Both I and an acquaintance of mine have contacted Thomas Richards about these asinine statements he is making regarding me and my book yet the poor devil doesn’t see fit to respond – only to claim that I work together with Jesuits, which couldn’t be further from the truth, or that I am even a bishop who is assisting a diocesan bishop – depending upon which definition Thomas meant to apply to the accusation.
He might as well call me the anti-Christ. There would be just about as much validity to that statement as to Thomas Richards claiming I am any sort of Jesuit coadjutor.
Sorry, Thomas Richards! The more I see of you the more I get the feeling that you were educated far beyond your intelligence but unfortunately not highly educated as well. Such a shame, your efforts could have been better served with a little more honesty.
How are you? I hope well!
I just saw the below message from you which his reply to a post from a viewer in Melbourne, Australia:
tlthe5th (1 month ago) Yes, I read through some of it. Some of it’s highlights. It’s trash. And i mean it. i was so happy to see that actually. What sources he used were very weak and most of it wasn’t sourced at all. The man is a total Vatican shill as well.
For your reference, this was from this YouTube page.
I am writing this to you because a friend of mine in the United States just sent me this exchange between you and the viewer that concerned me directly. I saw the link from her and at first I thought that I would just leave it but then I listened to your diatribe about “lying” in the beginning of this video. As such I feel compelled to reply.
I am the author of the book in question, “Thou Shalt Not Bear False Witness: The Truth about the Vatican and the Birth of Islam”, and after reading your comments I have to say that I really do not believe that you have actually even seen my book. I personally think that you are lying. I wrote a reply to the post which I hope will be posted.
Where do I start?
Besides calling the book “trash”, which I could be taken as a qualitative opinion on any aspect of the book (cover, artwork, writing style, etc.), I have problems with a few of your assertions. You are free to call the book trash if you want. I certainly don’t share this view but everyone is entitled to their own opinion.
What set off alarms in my head was when you said that my sources “were very weak” and “most of it wasn’t sourced at all.” You went on to say that I am “a total Vatican shill as well.”
First of all, I spent two years on the research of this book and there are multiple sources on almost every page. I am very adamant that the sources are open and in order. I hereby request you to point out exactly which sources were weak. I ask you in the process to point out exactly what segments of the book were not sourced at all. I think the onus is on you here due to your unwarranted comments though I seriously doubt that you will take up the challenge. Case in point, in your own video you don’t source your own assertions about Leo Ryan, the CIA, Jim Jones, Gary Metz, etc.
As for me being a “Vatican shill”, I am not a Catholic, have never been a Catholic and on top of that I am highly critical of the Pope and the Catholic Church on almost all of their positions. I was raised in an Evangelical church. My book had nothing to do with defending the Catholic Church at all. It was solely about taking all of Alberto Rivera’s claims regarding the Vatican and the birth of Islam and looking at them one by one and examining them for the historical truth. If you have indeed seen the book, which I doubt, you will note that include Rivera’s entire testimony word by word broken down by chapter. In fact the opening of every one of my chapters that discusses Rivera’s testimony in the book are Alberto Rivera’s own words, as published by Jack Chick, laid out for examination by the entire world.
Personally I do not believe from reading your comments about my book that you have even been in the same room with my book. (If so can you tell me where you saw this book?) I recommend that you have a look at the book yourself. Once you have actually seen and examined the book (and hopefully you will even read it as well!), compare it to your comments. I think then you will see who is a bullshit artist and who has done their homework.
Gary Dale Cearley
This open letter is directed to Thomas Richards.