I get that I'm, ironically, preaching to the choir here. If you're a regular around these parts, chances are you already know that between Michele Bachmann and Rick Perry -- and despite the Tea Party's proclamations that it's about economic and not social issues -- religious zealotry among conservative presidential contenders is alive and well. Over the weekend, Perry hosted 30,000 people in Houston at a prayer event he dubbed "The Response"; it featured the usual exultant arm-raising, Jesus-inspired trance-dancing and of course thunderous appeals to on high for guidance through these dark times. Bachmann, meanwhile, is -- well, Bachmann; her special brand of Christian fanaticism wouldn't get her declared mentally fit to stand trial for jaywalking much less allow her to be elected leader of any halfway-sane country.
Still, if you need a refresher course on just what we're likely up against in 2012 -- and by "we" I mean the vast swath of rational Americans who remain largely unheard-from in our political discourse simply because crazy makes for better ratings and more page hits -- scan through the following couple of pieces. I don't need to tell you how scary they are -- but that's sort of the point.
International Business Times: Ready or Not America, Here Comes Rick Perry: Presidential Candidate/8.7.11
The New Yorker: Leap of Faith/8.15.11
Mother Jones: The Documentary that Inspired Michele Bachmann/8.8.11
Two little postscripts: First, you may as well hook the keg up in your living room and prepare for the inevitable drinking game to be played wherein you down a beer every time somebody on the right screeches about how the articles above are part of the liberal media's obsession with destroying conservative Christians (two whenever Bachmann is defiantly referred to as a "strong Christian woman with conservative values.")
Second, yesterday on ABC George Will suggested that Rick Perry would be running on a platform of "Texas exceptionalism."
Now go get a paper towel and clean the coffee off your computer before it shorts it out.