So my mom gave me a few books to sell for her at Half-Price Books. While perusing through the stack, I saw a book called The Ezekiel Option by Joel C. Rosenberg.
So, I look on the back, where I am horrified to see that it has recommendations from not only Tim LaHaye (understandable, after all, this is Christian fiction... TL=Left Behind co-author) but also from...
Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, and NewsMax.com. This makes me truly, truly sad.
Limbaugh: "Rosenberg nails it--a provocative, conservative, political thriller that reads like a major Hollywood blockbuster."
Hannity: "So intertwined with modern events, it's scary."
NewsMax: "Eerily prophetic."
Reviewers at amazon.com seem to believe that this book is either an interpretation of scripture or that it is itself prophetic. Interesting. People reacted like this to Left Behind books, as well.
This phenomenon is so interesting... the intertwining of political conservatism (Limbaugh, Hannity) and religious conservatism (the Pat Robertson/LaHaye-Jenkins set) that is, at least from my perspective, becoming more and more common. Why is it inherently natural that people who don't believe in abortion or gay marriage should want tax cuts for the rich? It's not! In fact, considering the fact that fundamentalist/evangelical Christians tend to be more working/lower-middle class, big-business conservatism actively hurts them and their best interests. Yet they ally themselves with the Republican party and the larger conservative movement.
This is what I'm interested in studying: the ways in which these two seemingly-at-odds groups can get together and often the cultural/religious conservatives get lip service from the real movers and shakers but not a whole lot more. Is there really going to be an anti-gay marriage amendment? No. Bush and the Republicans aren't that stupid. But they sure will talk about it.
I'm interested in the ways in which these two groups interact and form a coherent identity as "conservatives," how big-business conservatives who probably couldn't care less about gay marriage or abortion or sex education (and might even support access to all of those things) think about using cultural conservatives.
I'm especially curious (and don't have a whole lot of ideas on because I haven't really researched it) the ways in which conservative Christian culture (through things like this Ezekiel Option book and the Left Behind books and Pat Robertson's 700 Club) convince people that economic/foreign policy conservatism is in their best interests. Because there are undoubtedly political elements in them (beyond the obvious religious-related ones).
Free market capitalism and conservative Christianity aren't natural bedfellows. But, they have become aligned and I'm really curious how and why.
Sorry for rambling on and on and on.