Daniel Larison on the idea that Beckstock was an awesome moment of Mormon-evangelical unity:
In other words, when Mormons and evangelicals are at their worst and are indulging their least admirable tendencies to idolize the country at the expense of their religious teachings, there is a chance for them to find common ground. If you think that a serious religious revival in America might have something to do with a spirit of repentance and humility rather than with an extravaganza of validation and national self-congratulation, that is really a very damning indictment of what Beck is doing. As Joe Carter correctly says, “As Moore notes, the problem isn’t really Beck. The problem is believers trading the true faith for the syncretism of Christian-flavored civic religion.”[….]
P.S. After I mentioned this post to my wife, she said she thought Beck reminded her a bit of Gaius Baltar, and this comparison made some sense. Inasmuch as he is simply validating his audience’s way of life, it does seem to be very much like Baltar’s “we are all perfect just as we are,” which makes the entire exercise that much worse.
That’s what a lot of what modern conservatism is about, taking people’s worst impulses (xenophobia, irrationality, selfishness), wrapping them in a flag, taping the flag to a bible, and telling people that their irrationality and xenophobia are exactly what make Jeebus and America so great. If you don’t agree, then you’re a cafeteria Christian or a God-hating Alinskyite.
I’m not a sci-fi person so I was disappointed to learn that Gaius Baltar was a charater on Battlestar Gallactica and not some obscure figure from early Christianity that I could read more about Wikipedia.