Secular Left Better Than Religious Right

It’s a Hobson’s choice, I know. Though I disagree with them both, I’d have to choose the secular socialist over the free-market bible thumper.

I ran across an essay today by John Michael Kelley. He exhorts his colleagues on the left not to succumb to religion as a politically expedient strategy for mounting a challenge the religious right. Here is an excerpt:

My question is where is the humility of the religions? Are they ready to acknowledge their vast failures throughout history to support the advancement of civilization against the forces of ignorance and greed? Are “progressive” churches ready to acknowledge openly what many pastors and priests will admit privately about the superstitions in their belief structures? Are “progressive” churches willing to have open and frank discussions about how irrational rituals, superstitious beliefs and dogma are damaging to the solution of modern problems and be ready to change them?


quite frankly I don’t care what superstitions you believe in, just don’t try to drag them into the public sphere under the guise of “values”. Religion has no exclusive claim to the evolution of values only to the superstition of the day.

Kelley trumpets his leftist political goals as well. But he is bright and clear about one thing: the destructiveness and sheer irrelevance of religion to any positive political future.

The two enemies of human freedom and progress are: unsupported beliefs and corrupt governments. Of the two, the belief issue is by far the most important. Because gullible people can be easily subjugated. Truly rational people will eventually oust a corrupt government. Reason will eventually result in smaller government and markets that work.

Comments (One comment)

adron / April 22nd, 2006, 10:46 pm / #1

Now this one I am torn between.

Free Market Christian Zealots


Socialistic Atheists

That is a hard decision, I wouldn’t want to make it based off of just those two alignment properties.

I’d also want to know a lot more about specific outlying pieces of information.

Also “The two enemies of human freedom and progress are: unsupported beliefs and corrupt governments.” I generally agree with.

I also am confident that they greatest fighter and balancing force against those things is economic freedoms. Without them either Government or Religion, irrelevant which one, would rule our lives with an iron thumb.

Personally, I’ll take just free-markets AND atheism.

Socialism and Religions can just go away.

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