Award for worst equivocation of the year goes to Steve Sailer for comparing James Watson’s donation toward Barack Obama to Don (of Stormfront) Black’s contribution to Ron Paul. Steve himself had been defending Watson earlier and pointing out that he’s not some troglodyte but an intelligent though prickly political moderate. There really is no way to cast Don Black in a better light, and unlike Jared Taylor I don’t think he would even want you to. Even better, Steve could have pointed out that some white nationalists and neo-nazis (among them former Paul supporters) are down with Obama (I give more links in the comments there). Of course, you’re an idiot if you think that indicates Obama is a white nationalist or neo-nazi. You’re also an idiot if you believed that about Paul.

Elsewhere Steve discusses the odd lack of mention amidst the (weak) Obama-Farrakhan hubbub that the good (or not so good, depending on your point of view) minister hates white people generally, not just Jews. In the comments here I noted that there used to be bigotry toward white ethnics (that excluded WASPS) that is not considered acceptable anymore, but having problems with whites more broadly is considered acceptable. I would also wager that negative attitudes toward a relatively small Christian sect is considered more acceptable than toward Christianity or religion more broadly. Mormons are a tricky case between a mockable cult like Scientology and a protected minority. There were arguments over whether it was acceptable to refuse to vote for Mitt Romney based on his religion (my problem was that I didn’t think he believed in anything, and I’m an agnotheist!) but who would accuse someone of bigotry if they said they refused to vote for GWB based on his religious beliefs?

Via Larison (discussing the same subject), I find this from Glenn Greenwald comparing the McCain-Hagee connection to the Obama-Farrakhan one (especially funny is Tim Russert’s question to Barack about Harry Belafonte, whose only connection as far as I know is that he is part-black and somewhere to the left of the center of American politics). To me what makes the comparison lopsided is that Obama has always explicitly rejected Farrakhan and his support (I would just say “I despise him but welcome his support”*) while McCain gladly accepts Haggee without rebuke (as did Giuliani with Robertson). Personally, I reject guilt-by-association in the case of McCain, just as I did earlier with Obama and Paul. I have problems enough with Mr. “Bomb, bomb Iran” and his own actions, regardless of Pastor Haggee’s theology, which I highly doubt McCain has any serious belief in (his “Faith of my Fathers” is entirely militarist and secular, not religious).

Let’s discuss Haggee on his own terms though. An enlightened Occidentalist non-believer, I share some of his distaste for Islam and I agree that its scriptures endorse violence, however I don’t think scripture matters that much. Then there are his beliefs that God destroyed New Orleans and is going to destroy Israel acting through an alliance of Arab nations (though sparked by Iran) which will oddly enough be led by Russia. Since I don’t believe in God at all, all of that seems irrelevant to me. He can pray all he wants for God to smite, but unless he actually pushes for smiting policies no marginal people will be smitten. I can perfectly understand the line that supposedly “pro-Israel” foreign policy does not actually benefit Israel. As a libertarian I think a lot of government legislation “on behalf of the poor” screws them over, and even more similarly as a paleo-libertarian I think much of our “national defense” and “homeland security” does not render us better defended or more secure. I would like to see some people say “Maybe this policy isn’t in Israel’s interests, but we have to balance different goals and putting Israel first is the job of Israeli politicians”, but given how popular a free-lunch is compared to tradeoffs I don’t see that happening any time soon. At any rate, it strikes me as silly to say that evangelical support for Israel is “anti-Israel” because they think it will be destroyed in the Apocalypse. I was under the impression that the entire earth will be destroyed, so maybe they’re anti-everyone, but if you don’t believe in the Book of Revelation you have nothing to fear. Other than of course the likelihood that they will involve Israel in a massive war, which John McCain does quite competently without Haggee.

An entertaining bit at the end is the Catholic League’s Bill Donohue (who you may remember from South Park) complaining about Haggee’s anti-Catholicism (on display alongside philo-semitism in video here, hat-tip to Ann Althouse). Thought that was relegated to Jack Chick, eh? Dissaproval of anti-Catholic bigotry is still around, but weak, a fading remnant of the memory of nativist attitudes toward the Catholic “ethnics” that immigrated to America’s cities in the late 19th and early 20th centuries (no one cares about the German immigrants from the early and mid 19th century). As it becomes evident that those Catholics have risen above the working class and merged with broader white Christian America, worries about anti-Catholic bigotry will be as non-existent as concern for anti-Protestant bigotry (whose most recent rallying cry I believe is the massacre of French Huguenots). As someone who shares the Derb’s mild anti-Catholic bigotry I look forward to the day when I can publicly express who I really am without opprobrium. I have a dream!

On a somewhat related note, while Catholics broadly have cause to be embarrassed that an ass like Donohue is taken to represent them and defend against “defamation”, it could be worse. The mafia attempted to create an Italian anti-defamation organization, and their failure might be one of the best things that’s happened to Italians. Right now it doesn’t seem like the Jewish Anti-Defamation League is doing much good, though fortunately many Jews recognize this (I can’t recall Catholics doing the same for Donohue, which might be because nobody takes him seriously). I discussed that here (warning, that post is in large part a joke more offensive than funny) and an attempt by some Italians to grab the victim-card here, and now looking back at it it seems much of this post is a repeat of that one. Oh, well.

Also, I agree that “Hussein” is an odd middle-name for an American politician and it’s not surprising to point this out, but making fun of people’s names also tends to make you look stupid.

*Imagine a loony who has two goals: wipe out the Jews, and end the war in Iraq (which is of course caused by the Jews, as is his baldness and erectile dysfunction). None of the candidates is brave enough to touch the “should we kill the yids?” question, so he evaluates who is most likely to end the Iraq war and settles on Obama. Does that in any way discredit Obama? No. Does it cause Obama to shift in any direction towards semitocide? No. All of the loon’s support goes toward (well, maybe not) the anti-war cause, just as his patronage of Wal-Mart supports the production of adult diapers (that’s also the Jews’ fault). Wal-Mart does not need to reject his money or loudly disavow his affection for them as they are not tainted with anti-semitism, and neither does Obama.