‘Satanism’ was basically anything horror writer Dennis Wheatley didn’t agree with
11.07.2013
08:27 pm

Topics:
Books
Kooks
Occult

Tags:
Dennis Wheatley


 
Dennis Wheatley probably did more to sell black magic and the occult to the masses than any other writer. During his lifetime, Wheatley wrote over 60 books, which sold more than 50 million copies. His best-sellers included such classics as The Devil Rides Out, To the Devil a Daughter, and The Haunting of Toby Jugg. Wheatley actually hoped these occult novels would alert readers to the growing “forces of darkness,” which he believed were destroying Britain and the world. He considered these dark forces to be communism, socialism, multiculturalism, and to an extent sexual liberation and personal freedom of expression. Actually, anyone whose politics he didn’t like, the old crumudgeon lumped in with “Satanism” and he once famously said:

“Is it possible that riots, wildcat strikes, anti-apartheid demonstrations and the appalling increase in crime have any connection with magic and Satanism?”

It was after the Second World War, that Wheatley first indulged his nutty belief that a war between what he described as “good” and “evil” was inevitable, and became firmly convinced people (i.e. those to the right) should be prepared to form private militias to fight against the rise of “Satanism.” Cue thunder and lightning flash.

So, that’s the background to this brief interview, which Wheatley gave to the BBC in 1970, where he discussed his views on “good” and “evil,” “light” and “dark,” and why he believed civilization was disintegrating.
 

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Discussion
Impotent middle-aged Christian guy doles out sexual advice… for free!
11.05.2013
10:43 am

Topics:
Advertorial
Belief
Kooks
Sex

Tags:
Ed Hurst


 
This is one of those books that I reckon you can judge by the cover…

This curious little volume is by a fellow named Ed Hurst. It’s a free ebook you can acquire—should you want a copy—via the author. Hurst is a prolific self-published writer. His other titles include The Mind of Christ, The Chronicles of Misty, The Laptop Oracles,  A Course in Biblical Mysticism and Mystical Tales of Romance. He’s written 22—that’s right, 22—books in the past couple of years. On his website, Hurst declares “I am called to prophesy against Western Civilization as a whole, because it is fundamentally hostile to God’s revelation.”

Just so you know where he stands, K?

After telling the reader how he’s been faithfully married to his wife since 1978, Hurst gets… personal:

“I can claim a history of total fidelity, but you’ll have to decide for yourself how true that might be. Further, I am at the age and level of exposure to environmental pharmaceuticals that my libido is about gone. It still works somewhat with my wife only because of the vast ocean of trust she has earned. Otherwise, the wiring between my testosterone and my sense of taste in flesh is largely burned out. Not much of anything or anyone turns me on, so to speak.”

Why does Hurst inflict this information upon us? He explains:

“This helps to establish me as an objective observer. All I hope to gain is an opportunity for people to peel away the layers of social mythology and find peace.”

Ah ha! So when it comes to dispensing sexual advice, impotence = objectivity? Apparently in the parallel universe that Mr. Hurst resides in this is the case. He’s clearly not interested in bringing sexy back…

Hurst blames church leaders and feminism for the decline in Christian marriages. Specifically he blames the church leaders for feminism.

“What most preachers assume is good moral values still leaves the door wide open for feminine domination in the home and all the attendant problems that come with it. What part of “be submissive” in God’s Word do we not understand?”

According to Hurst, this feminism shit, why, it’s anti-Christian…

“Men tend to be a little lazy, particularly about enforcing moral boundaries. It requires a bit of indirect prompting, but direct nagging is a guarantee of failure. He is wired to bristle and resist. Rather, she has to devote herself to strengthening him according to his nature. A conspicuous devotion that others can see will provoke him to genuine heroism as much as anything can. Treat him like a hero until he feels the vibes and acts accordingly; a woman has no power to remake her man’s nature. He naturally gets angry if his woman embarrasses him in front of others.”

You hear that ladies, make your man feel like a hero.

Here’s Hurst’s (free) advice for the menfolk:

“Guys: Know your mission first. You simply have no business messing with women until you know who you are and what you must do with your life. That means delaying your start when gals your age are raring to go. Don’t be ashamed to come back when you’re ready and “rob the cradle,” but realize it is highly risky most of all because ten years is forever when it comes to cultural trends in the West. She’ll be quite foreign to you unless she’s partly retro. The biggest mistake you’ll make is allowing your hormones to run you off a cliff. Is she hot? Close your eyes and get a hold of yourself. Her beauty doesn’t mean a thing, except that she’ll probably be very hard to get, in one sense or another. The last thing you want to do is advertise your willingness to be a slave by staring like every other drooling loser.”

So says the guy who introduced himself to his readers by telling them that his dick is dead…

Via Matthew Paul Turner’s blog

Posted by Richard Metzger | Discussion
Christian group thinks it’s ‘better to die than to live’ in pro-gay world!


 
Last night as I was writing this post about the end of the world fantasies of the Christian Right, I came across a ridiculous quote from dim-bulb entertainer Pat Boone who once said that he’d rather his young daughters died than to be raised under godless Communism.

I’d imagine that little Debby and her siblings would have felt differently, perhaps.

Here’s a new one, though: Christian political organization,The Family Leader, headed up by the sleazy Bob Vander Plaat, says it is better to die than live in a world welcoming of gay people.  In an article posted on their website with the title “9 Reasons You Will Be Made to Care,” The Family Leader group laid out a manifesto of ignorance, as Gay Star News reports:

They referenced the Disney Channel featuring a lesbian couple on a TV show, a California bill ensuring trans people can use the right bathroom, the US evangelist who was arrested in London for spouting anti-gay hate, and the Colorado baker facing jail after refusing to make a wedding cake for a gay couple.

The boycott of Barilla pasta has pissed them off too. What’s a poor Christian who is “being targeted by homosexual activists who’s [sic] agenda is clear: approve of my lifestyle or pay the consequences” to do, The Family Leader asks.

“At first, the cases were few and far between. Now the number of cases are building, and the collective threat is growing, with the goal of suffocating Christians’ vocal opposition to promoting a lifestyle which is not consistent with their faith.”

Would Jesus discriminate?

Here’s how it ends:

What will you do?  Will you give in to their agenda by saying and doing nothing? Or will you lead yourself, your family, your church, and your community?  Our nation, our children need leadership. What you choose will impact generations to come.

To paraphrase a quote from Winston Churchill:

“If you do not fight when you have a chance of winning, you will eventually fight when you have no hope of winning, because it will be better to die than to live.”

Or you could just kill yourself if you’re too sensitive to live IN REALITY. Like those nice Heaven’s Gate people.

It’s a modest proposal. A more realistic one.

The Family Leader’s loathesome leader, Bob Vander Plaat, is mulling over running for the Senate in the Republican Party primary in Iowa next year. He could win, too.

Via Joe.My.God

Posted by Richard Metzger | Discussion
Oh Jesus: ‘Left Behind’ author’s group behind apocalyptic Tea party shutdown?


 
For those of you either too young to remember them—or perhaps not raised in the Bible Belt—among the very top best-selling books of the 1970s were Hal Lindsey’s The Late, Great Planet Earth and its sequel Satan is Alive and Well on Planet Earth. These books are literalist readings of the Book of Revelation, presenting a fanciful, goofy paranoiac eschatology comparing vaguely worded end-time prophecies written over 2000 years ago (and reworded an unknown number of times since) with (then) current events. They’re about as intellectually serious as Chick tracts.

Nevertheless, The Late, Great Planet Earth was marketed as non-fiction Bible prophecy predicting and decoding last days milestones—the USSR invading Israel, the coming of the Anti-Christ who would rule over the European Union, famine, plagues, etc, etc, etc—before the Rapture and the subsequent return of Jesus. One of Lindsey’s main themes was that Jesus would come back “one generation” after the state of Israel was established, so by the 1970s, this was a very hot topic in what we now refer to as red states. (If you have ever wondered WHY Southern evangelical Christians are so obsessed with Israel, wonder no more, Hal Lindsey’s books were—and still would be, although I think people forget this—a huge, huge part of this strain of American Christianity. It was there already, but he brought it to prime-time, so to speak and amplified it culturally.)

Hal Lindsey’s books (co-authored by Carole C. Carlson) rivaled the sales of titles like Jaws, The Godfather and The Exorcist as the books most likely to be read by people who didn’t read very much. These books were staples of nearly every garage sale back then. Apparently over 28 million copies of The Late, Great Planet Earth were sold.

Among the known fans of Lindsey’s books in the 1970s was California Governor Ronald Reagan.

In December 6, 1983, during an Oval Office interview, Reagan informed two stunned reporters from People magazine:

“There were times in the past when we thought the end of the world was coming, but never anything like this.”

Tea party nitwit Pat Boone was one of Reagan’s closest friends. He said of the President:

“I believe that Ronald Reagan would make no decision that would run counter to his understanding of God’s direction and what God says is going to happen and what God says he wants to happen.”

(Reagan said this of Boone to a group of evangelicals at the kickoff of his reelection campaign: “And Pat Boone stood up, and in speaking to this crowd, he said, in talking of communism, that he had daughters, they were little girls then, and he said, ‘I love them more than anything on earth.’ And he said, (and I thought, ‘I know what he is going to say,’ and ‘Oh, you must not say that,’ and yet I had underestimated him). He said, “I would rather that they die now believing in God than live to grow up under communism and die one day no longer believing in God.” Big round of applause for Pat Boone, father of the (20th) century…)

Among Reagan’s cabinet members were men known to be to some degree influenced by Christian millennialist beliefs that we were living in the end times. Reagan’s notably asinine Secretary of the Interior, James G. Watt didn’t believe in ecological conservation because Jesus was coming back. It is known that General John Vesse, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and the Chief of Naval Operations, James Watkins, would meet regularly inside the Pentagon with Herbert Ellingwood, deputy Counsel to the President and Attorney General Edwin Meese III to discuss their common faith. I think it’s safe to assume that talk of Bible prophecy and a nuclear end of the world was on the menu at such meetings!

Reagan’s Secretary of Defense, Caspar Weinberger, an Episcopalian, told students at Harvard:

“I have read the Book of Revelation, and, yes, I believe the world is going to end - by an act of God, I hope - and every day I think that time is running out.”

Yep, these were the folks who had their mitts on the fuckin’ nukes. This was our side! (It should be noted that the Soviets were atheists! WHAT must the KGB have thought of these guys???)

When the great Texas progressive muckraker Ronnie Dugger penned the article “Does Reagan Expect Armageddon?” for the Washington Post in 1984, the frightening prospects of the crazy Americans bringing an end to the human race became a cause for alarm all across Europe. I lived in London then and there was a lot of anti-American sentiment at the time. I can vividly recall being quizzed about HOW?!?!? HOW?!?!?! could these (or did they say “you”?) idiot Americans believe in this stupid shit from three exasperated French guys and a perplexed English punk rock couple at a party once. I tried to explain it as best I could, but I don’t think my shoulder-shrugging “Look, that’s just the way it is over there, what can I tell you?” rationale for “my peeps” was in the least comforting to them!

Something I read this morning made me think back to those halcyon Cold War days of the almost quaint-seeming batshit crazy Republican Christianists of the 1980s: According to an article in the New York Times yesterday, one of the principal reichwing pressure groups architecting and advocating for the current Tea party-led GOP government shutdown was founded by none other than Tim LaHaye, the author of this current last generation’s mega, mega apocalyptic best-sellers, the “Left Behind” series. Tim LaHaye is basically today’s Hal Lindsey.

Lee Fang writes at The Nation:

The coalition is managed by Heritage and the Council for National Policy. The latter organization, dubbed once as “the most powerful conservative group you’ve never heard of,” is a thirty-year-old nonprofit dedicated to transforming the country into a more right-wing Christian society. Founded by Tim LaHaye, the Rapture-obsessed author of the “Left Behind” series, CNP is now run by Christian-right luminaries such as Phyllis Schlafly, Tony Perkins and Kenneth Blackwell.

Guess who else has his fingerprints all over this shutdown mess? Reagan’s Attorney General Edwin Meese III...

The Council for National Policy, the Conservative Action Project and Ed Meese himself know all too well that racial—not to mention religious—demographic trends in the US mean that there is a very strong likelihood there “their type” will probably never get their hands anywhere near the nukes again, but not content to merely fantasize, sidelined, about the end of the world (and their own perceived ROLES in this cosmic battle between good and evil, like the Reaganites who actually carried the nuclear football for eight fuckin’ years), this cabal of numbskull, dumbshit apocalypse-obsessed morons want to bring it on by destroying the world economy!

You have to give these Teahadist types some credit, they know how to fight dirty. These Republican economic suicide bombers are willing to shred the Constitution to bits to “save” the country from majority rule, aren’t they?

Yo’ dawg, they’ll end the world to save it. It makes perfect sense. TO THEM. Because Jeebus is on their side, of course!

This latest news introduces a whole new level of apocalyptic weirdness into the mix. I encourage you to read “Meet the Evangelical Cabal Orchestrating the Shutdown” by Lee Fang at The Nation. The implications of what he’s written there are fairly staggering if you ask me.

This is a battle between good and evil. It is if at least one side sees it that way. The Tea party jihadis want a Christian theocracy and they don’t really care if they have to force it on everyone else. In this way, how is the Christian Right in any way different from the Muslim Brotherhood they fear so much? Their brain-damaged beatific vision of a theocratic America, a country cleansed of gays, Muslims, liberals, illegal immigrants, science and where non-white people don’t get to vote will never, ever come to pass absent a massive genocide occurring in North America, which I don’t think is going to happen anytime soon. The concept of “the American Taliban” is becoming more real with every passing day and the rest of the world (especially the business community and China) is starting to notice it, too. And they are alarmed at what they see. Even the Taliban are brutally mocking us for being stupid!

Holy shit. Literally.
 

“I reveal my innermost self, to God.”
 

Posted by Richard Metzger | Discussion
Call Obamacare: 1 800 F-UCKYO
10.08.2013
12:42 pm

Topics:
Kooks

Tags:
William Tapley


 
Bonkers YouTube “endtimes co-prophet” William Tapley doesn’t mind mockery. It comes with the territory of being an important persona in the all-out war between good and evil that will culminate in the return of Christ. Tapley just wants to get his apocalyptic “revelation” out any way he can.

Yesterday he sighed, when told that he was “hilarious” by one of his viewers:

So why haven’t Leno, Letterman, Colbert or any of the other media shills picked up on the story?

Something tells me they probably will be getting in touch over this one…
 

 
Via Christian Nightmares

Posted by Richard Metzger | Discussion
Pathetica alert: Conservative media watchdog calls for Ritz Crackers boycott because… Al Sharpton


 
First off, I want to make it clear at the outset that I am firmly in the camp of people who simply cannot believe Al Sharpton, of all freaking people, has his own show on a supposedly respectable news network. As a former New Yorker, to me Al Sharpton is always going to be the asshole shooting off his mouth off about the Tawana Brawley “case” on The Morton Downey Jr. Show and who had a special knack for showing up whenever TV cameras were around. The guy pictured with curlers in his hair at the beauty parlor. The idiotic showboater in the full-length fur coat.

Even if I do tend to agree with much of what Sharpton seems to believe these days, it’s still a joke that the Tawana Brawley guy was invited to become one of the primary faces of a major cable news network. At what point did Al Sharpton stop being the Tawana Brawley guy? The dude is no human trademark for MSNBC’s credibility as a news source, that’s for certain. He’s not a journalist, he’s the goddamned Tawana Brawley guy.

It’s pathetic, basically, is what it is. But… whatever.

Leave it to Ben Shapiro, one-time Robin to Andrew Breitbart’s Batman, to trump even the already admittedly sad fact that Al Sharpton has his own show on MSNBC with something even more pathetic in the process of trying to call attention to to how sad it is that Sharpton is on MSNBC.

Apparently, boy blunder Ben has found another father figure in the form of one-time prominent New Left writer turned raging crazypants conservative David Horowitz (a man with well-documented daddy issues of his own, of course). They’re teaming up for “TruthRevolt” something that Shapiro describes as a rightwing version of Media Matters.

TruthRevolt, eh? I guess that URL was free…

Horowitz, a man who once associated with the greatest lefty publication in American history, Ramparts—a magazine that published the likes of Susan Sontag, Hunter S. Thompson, Angela Davis, Noam Chomsky, Seymour Hersh, Thomas Merton, Allen Ginsberg and Robert Scheer—had this to say about his venture with the 29-year-old Shapiro, the wimpy Doogie Howser of the house that Breitbart built:

Today, the David Horowitz Freedom Center is launching TruthRevolt, a much-needed campaign to expose the hypocrisies and mendacities of the leftwing media. A brainchild of Ben Shapiro, TruthRevolt is a groundbreaking initiative to engage in investigative journalism about the leftwing media figures who produce radical ideology masquerading as “news” and feed it to the American public as objective journalism.

So says a man who went from the journalistic heights of the fabled Ramparts magazine to associating himself with off-the-scale bughouse nutcases like Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer.

So what’s gonna be the first “groundbreaking initiative” in TruthRevolt’s “investigative journalism,” you wonder?

They’re calling for a boycott of Ritz Crackers.

Scratching your head over that one? Gather ‘round children, Lil’ Ben’s got a history lesson for ya:

In 1994, Sharpton stood before a crowd at Kean College in New Jersey. “White folks was in the caves while we was building empires,” he said. “We built pyramids before Donald Trump even knew what architecture was … We taught philosophy and astrology [sic] and mathematics before Socrates and them Greek homos ever got around to it … Do some cracker come and tell you, ‘Well my mother and father blood go back to the Mayflower,’ you better hold your pocket. That ain’t nothing to be proud of, that means their forefathers was crooks.”

Oh please, Al Sharpton said shit like that ALL THE TIME back then. No one gave a shit then, no one gives a shit now. He’s also been on MSNBC—as ridiculous as that seems to me, too—for two years. At a time when the country is being threatened by a small cadre of GOP lunatics, no matter if you support those lunatics or oppose their aims, WHY did David Horowitz and his derpy “low T” pal Ben Shapiro think that they’d receive anything but brutal mockery by media types for PROPOSING A RITZ CRACKER BOYCOTT during a time of a constitutional crisis because Al Sharpton called white people “crackers” TWENTY YEARS AGO???

Although Ben Shapiro IS right about Al Sharpton, the fruit there is hanging so low it’s simply pitiful. There wasn’t even one PR “genius” in David Horowitz’s “thinktank” who could’ve said “Uh, guys, we’re going to look like a bunch of fucking idiots launching this thing right now?

Apparently not! Even the reliably stupid Daily Caller thinks Shapiro’s new hobby is idiotic: “What a proud moment in conservative history,” deadpanned Patrick Howley

It is idiotic. Shapiro is encouraging his braindead readers to tweet @RitzCrackers with hashtag #SharptonsCrackers.

Al Sharpton. Ben Shapiro. Ritz Crackers. I can’t even waste another minute of my life writing about this epically insignificant cosmic meaninglessness.

Posted by Richard Metzger | Discussion
Alex Jones explains Obamacare dressed as a lizard, continues downward mental health spiral


 
Is it wrong to hold up someone who is so obviously mentally ill to mockery and then sell advertisements against it? Am I a bad person for lampooning someone clearly losing his shit for laughs and banner ads?

Nah. This kind of thing happens on Fox News all the live-long day, doesn’t it?

I think if you showed a younger Alex Jones what he would eventually come to represent, and how the general public would regard him, as they do today, “Winning” like his pal Charlie Sheen, just a sad, pathetic clown, he’d probably break down and start sobbing.

Imagine the sheer, unmitigated hell his wife must go through!

Crack is wack, but whatever Alex Jones is on should be avoided at all costs.

Maybe the Illuminati HAVE already gotten to him. I guess I wasn’t thinking, you know, enough steps ahead!
 

Posted by Richard Metzger | Discussion
Glenn Beck: Beware Obama’s Marxist revolutionaries, next stop mass murders!


 
Still trying to live up to his reputation as Glenn Beck, on his program today Glenn Beck insisted that it was really “Marxist revolutionaries” in the Obama administration who were causing national parks and monuments to be shuttered during the GOP-led government shutdown.

Despite knowing fully well which party was to blame for the shutdown, Beck blamed Obama anyway, spinning a yarn about “a secret cabal” in the White House whose goal is to “inflict pain” on Americans.

“I want you to understand you are now seeing what I told you about three weeks ago. I told you they have gone from nudge to shove. Your next step is shoot.”

“Understand they are into shove, every Marxist communist revolution always ends with millions dead. Always, without fail, every time.”

Somehow Beck equates Stalinist and Maoist atrocities to the Washington Monument being closed down temporarily and a supposed starvation endgame of the Obama administration:

“They starved them to death. Why? To teach them a lesson. This is the beginning of teaching the American people a lesson: don’t you screw with us.”

Oddly, considering his animus for the “Marxist” President, at the clips end, Beck admonished his listeners to support his “Defund the GOP” campaign before “it will be too late.”

Seems like odd logic, but it’s Glenn Beck so why bother asking why?

How senile would you have to be to willingly choose to tune into Glenn Beck’s radio show??? His audience must have a collective IQ of approximately one peanut… The folks at Rightwing Watch, they at least get paid for this torture!
 

 
Via Rightwing Watch

Posted by Richard Metzger | Discussion
Another blistering, anti-Republican cover from the NY Daily News


 
No, it might not have quite the same humiliating panache as yesterday’s classic “House of Turds” cover, but it certainly shows just how OUT OF THEIR CONTROL the “shutdown” narrative has gotten from the hapless Republican Party, doesn’t it, when they’re losing the support of even the mainstream conservative papers like The New York Daily News?

Yesterday there were essentially two competing and contrasting visuals: On Fox News, Breitbart, Drudge Report and the like, all you saw were signs of strutting cock-of-the-walk Republican imbeciles grinning, bragging, proudly acting like they’d just beaten the hell out of the black guy in a barroom brawl. Each and every one of them seemed ridiculously oblivious to the way people outside of their bubble might regard the accuracy of what they were saying, the validity of their “true believer” arguments and also the ridiculous hubris of their behavior. Consider the non-verbal message the Republicans are sending by turning on Fox News for a little while with the sound down, and you’ll see what I mean.

I’m not gonna lie, I’m all over this stuff. I wish I had a whole wall of TVs like David Bowie in The Man Who Fell to Earth. I can’t get enough. Watching the GOP dig itself deeper in shit IN REAL TIME? Pass me the popcorn and a shot of Jim Beam each time they say it’s the Democrats who won’t negotiate. (I’m seeing this sentence in triple, and sliding off my chair, jus’ so’s you fine people know that, okay?...Hiccup!)

Back in the real world, where most people don’t get their “informations” from screaming lunatics on AM talk radio and ALL CAPS EMAILS FILLED WITH PARANOIAC IDIOCY forwarded from someone they go to church with, well, we saw some of that, too, but what of the millions who were desperate to sign up for affordable healthcare yesterday?

That was news, too and so it now sets up a battle of images that the GOP—who were all so sure that Obamacare would be a resounding flop—did not perhaps anticipate:

One side is against the interests of sick people. This party is also the one favored by the vast majority of Christians, go figure.

How many of these Republican voters truly feel in their heart of hearts that if their savior came back TODAY he’d kick the crutches right out from under a sick person or deny health insurance to someone who can’t afford it? What VERSION of Christianity is that? It’s THE AMERICAN VERSION. No wonder young people want no part of it.

We’re witnessing one of the single most absurd moments in all of American history! These people seem to want to bring on another Civil War solely to deny poor people healthcare! It’s sad, it’s pathetic, delusional, too, but in the main, it’s simply absurd.

When all’s said and done, one factor in all this is is becoming more and more obvious and yet no one will say it out loud: It’s not merely a Right vs. Left political conflict in America anymore, it’s a Smart vs. Dumb thing!

Idiocracy is NOW.
 

Posted by Richard Metzger | Discussion
God’s Angry Man: Dr. Gene Scott, live in concert
09.24.2013
09:51 am

Topics:
Belief
Idiocracy
Kooks
Television

Tags:
Dr. Gene Scott


 
In 1993, I attended an extremely curious Easter Sunday “church service”—and I use that term loosely—along with a motley crew of congregants assembled in downtown Los Angeles. Dr. Gene Scott, the mad minister of America’s low watt TV stations, presided over this occasion. I convinced a British friend of mine—who had never heard of him or seen his show—to go with me because I thought that it would be totally hi-larious, a veritable laff riot… but we’ll get to what really happened soon enough.

Dr. Gene Scott was the utterly unhinged UHF television evangelist who grew in fame (and apparently fortune) during the Reagan era with his berserk, conspiratorial lunatic rantings that occasionally—only very occasionally—mentioned Jesus or had some sort of what most people could agree was “religious” content. Mostly he talked about UFOs, gambling on horses and his much-hated ex-wife. I first became aware of him on WPGH, a Pittsburgh market UHF station. He must have purchased late night airtime from them and from a number of other channels around the country. As the 1980s wore on, Gene Scott became very, very hard to miss on cable: If you were flipping channels, depending on the time of day, the guy might be on as many as five of them simultaneously. He continuously boasted of being broadcast in South America, South Korea,  and the Caribbean. That in America, he was on, somewhere, during each hour of ever day, seven days a week, 52 weeks out of the year.

Now that’s a lot of TV, you might be thinking, and you’d be right, but Gene Scott could talk. And talk and talk and talk. Like a speedfreak can talk. And smoke cigars. And stare directly into the camera, refusing to “preach” unless the donations started to roll in. When Scott’s show first came on, it was extremely low budget. Often—very often—Scott’s show would consist of him sitting in a chair on a bare studio floor with a chalkboard behind him, holding a stack of index cards. He would pretend that on each of these cards was written the sum of a very large donation that had just come in over the telephone and he would rattle them off, rapid-fire, and throw the cards over his shoulder as he did so. Scott would have you believe—although it was an obvious lie—that he was getting a thousand dollars, not twenty bucks, not even $100, but a thousand dollars—if not more—from each and every caller!

In a flat monotone, Scott would say “Dallas, TX—$1000. Portland, OR—another $1000. Phoenix, AZ, a donation of $3000—see they aren’t CHEAP in Phoenix like they are in Portland an’ Dallas—Scranton, PA—that’s $4000 from Scranton. Maybe I will preach after all…” and so forth and so on. He would often claim five figure donations several times an hour. To hear him claim even that a $100k donation had just come in hot off the wire was not unusual in the least. What did the IRS make of all this, I wonder?

It was patently obvious that Scott was lying, but even if the threadbare set and the absurd amounts of the supposed donations he was claiming didn’t clue you in immediately, the band who “appeared” (after he’d ask for a “little tinkle on the keyboards”) were from another show entirely, like he had purchased stock footage from another low watt religious broadcaster. Or something. He would pretend they were in the studio with him, even though they obviously weren’t. The phone bank operators that he cut away to, they, too, were from someplace else entirely, but he would pretend they were in another room, just down the hall. It was absurd. He would have no interaction with them, because, of course, no interaction was possible! Scott was crazy enough to think that no one would notice, but everyone did. I’d guess that he had no more than three or four crew members to begin with—when Scott’s show first came on, it was extremely low budget—but his operation seemed to grow pretty quickly. Eventually he hired an actual band, a bigger studio, and real phone operators.

Gene Scott would berate, belittle, bully and bark at this viewers with extreme contempt and tell them that they weren’t deserving of his “teachings.” When he did deign to “preach,” he did a variant on the trick that Glenn Beck uses today to browbeat his lowbrow listeners: Scott would take his blackboard and scrawl something across it that was supposedly written in Greek, or Hebrew or Arabic and then he’d go off on a long-winded diatribe that had nothing to do with that or with anything else. In one memorable program Scott asked his audience if they were any “more tired” this year than they were last year. He couldn’t exactly hear them, but assumed the answer to be “yes” and concocted a ridiculous fantasy about radio waves emanating at the Tropic of Cancer that were making everyone docile, sleepy and compliant.

And then he’d say something like “The government wants to have me killed. Because I know too much. If you want me to LIVE so I can come back here to tell you more about this IMPORTANT INFORMATION tomorrow night that nobody else has, then you need to send me money TONIGHT so I can protect myself!”

The following night, Scott appeared with two vicious-looking, growling Doberman Pinschers and a volume of the Encyclopedia Britannica. He read off the various things trained Doberman attack dogs were capable of (like ripping your head off, etc) and after each one, he would nod affirmatively, look directly into the camera and say flatly—and meanly—“My dogs can do that.”

Dude was a showman, but Dr. Gene Scott was also the most out-of-his-mind person who had EVER been on television up to that point on a regular basis. I didn’t watch his show every night, but I did watch it frequently enough. I’d usually flip between early Letterman and Scott’s ranting and raving.
 

 
Another distinguishing characteristic of Gene Scott’s enigmatic TV preacher shtick was that he always sported different kinds of hats, like a pith helmet, a fisherman’s cap or a sombrero. On more than one occasion he wore a handkerchief tied in four knots like a Monty Python “Gumby,” with square Johnny Rotten sunglasses. One night he would have long hair and a beard, the next night, the beard was gone and the hair short again. The night after that, he’d have a new mustache. His glasses changed a lot, too. Every night he would look totally different.

If you watched his show regularly, the first thing you would wonder would be “Who would give this incoherent, incomprehensible crank their money?” The second thing you would notice, especially if you’d been gone for a while, was how his production values continued to rise over the years. Obviously people were sending him money. But who were they?

I was about to find out. I called the RSVP number listed in an LA WEEKLY ad for Scott’s church and before I could politely inquire about tickets, I was yelled at by a woman with an accent who identified herself as “Doc’s assistant.” She GRILLED ME about WHY I wanted to attend that Sunday’s service. I wasn’t prepared for how aggressive she was but managed to (perhaps) convince her that I just wanted to check it out and that my request for entry was an innocuous one.

It was obvious that she was trying to tamp down any potential disruption of the Easter Sunday service and that it had happened before. She was hardcore and deeply suspicious of me, it was quite apparent.

So as I mentioned at the top of this article, I planned to go to see Gene Scott with a friend of mine, and that she had never heard of Gene Scott and had absolutely no idea what she was in for, only, as I promised, that it was going to be extremely amusing. So on Easter Sunday, at the appointed time, we showed up at the United Artists Theatre in downtown Los Angeles at 927 S. Broadway.

Twenty years ago, downtown Los Angeles was only barely starting to become gentrified and the stark human horror the area was then known for has been gradually moved east since that time.

This was not the case in 1993 and I assumed that the United Artists Theatre would just be some shithole that Scott and his low rent hijinks were taped at.

Au contraire! In fact, this was not just any old United Artists Theatre, it was THE United Artists Theatre that was built by Mary Pickford, Douglas Fairbanks and Charlie Chaplin.

It’s an incredibly opulent movie house—one of the greatest in Los Angeles—a Spanish Gothic masterpiece with marble floors and brass accents. Flanking the stage there was an amazing tapestry curtain made from when the Theatre originally opened depicting scenes from famous silent movies with a big UA logo when the curtains were closed. My memory of the tapestry is that it was around 150 ft tall. Even in the late 1920s, something this elaborate and this size, still would have cost over $100k. I couldn’t believe that Gene Scott owned this building.

Before we could poke around for more than a single minute, we were warily greeted—if that’s the right word for it—by the woman on the phone who identified herself as “Doc’s assistant.” She was a mean-faced middle-aged Korean lady and she sternly told us not to whisper to each other, not to fidget, not to do anything that would break his concentration or disturb “Doc” in any way, not to go to the bathroom and don’t dare yell something or else we’d be in “big trouble!”

After that stern warning, she told us that these two security guards would take us to our seats. They did and then they sat right down on either side of us!

The lights went down and the service started soon enough. The stage was huge and a large group of musicians, the sort you might see at the Grand Ole Opry, walked on and started up on a Statler Brothers-sounding hymn. Then they started to build the suspense for “Doc” who soon arrived onstage with diamond encrusted sun glasses (we were inside of course), an expensive black suit, and cowboy boots. He was greeted like he was Elvis. Exactly like he was Elvis.

Scott immediately sat down on a chair, crossed his legs and lit up a cigar. His opening remarks had to do with marrying a couple in Saratoga, where he’d gone to watch his horses race, the day before. They were sitting in the front row and he made reference to the fact that they’d both been committing adultery behind the backs of their previous spouses and he laughed about it, like it was all a big joke to him.

Like “Doc’s assistant,” most of his congregation, more than half, were of Korean descent and then the next largest group was a mix of what can only be described as cowboy hat-wearing rednecks and their families, but they were a “type” that you do not get in Los Angeles, but that you would see in Texas maybe. Hispanic cowboys, too. There were also several members of the audience who didn’t fall into either of those disparate camps, Korean or cowboy, but who appeared to be people who’d come in from local homeless missions. And us. We were probably the most conspicuous people there, in a sense.

After some decidedly non sequitur preaching, the proceedings went right off the surrealism scale when “Doc” announced—by grabbing a mic, pulling it close to him and saying this in way that you could tell it was a sort of anticipated catchphrase of his—that it was “Offerin’ time!”

The entire audience jumped to their feet and started waving sealed tithing envelopes around, like they were on the fucking Price is Right or something. It was super tweaked. I wasn’t about to give a dime to this dude, so I merely sealed an empty envelope and stuck it in the plate when it was passed to me.

When the rawkus “Offerin’ Time!” settled down, “Doc” preached a lil’ more and then he asked for a “tinkle” on the keyboards. A tinkle, he said, for “a piss-ant.”

The audience roared!

What? Yes, I said a piss-ant. The band struck up the tune and sang a song called “Kill Some Piss-ants for Jesus.” You probably think I’m pulling your leg, but I’m not (see below). Who could—or would—make up something so damned stupid? It’s not like I am boasting about this or anything!
 

“Kill some piss-ants for Jesus”

After this he did another nonsensical Easter-themed lecturette and then he announced that there would be a SECOND “Offerin’ time!” This one transpired with the same jump up and down, wave your envelope around mania as before! I mean, wouldn’t most people just split their intended donation into two envelopes? Why were they so EXCITED? Did he get noticeably more money with two than one? Perhaps he did. Perhaps his congregation simply were that stupid.

All I know is that by this point, we’d had it. It was such an incredibly deflating encounter with a small segment of the human race that neither of us had known existed an hour before. These people were brainwashed by NOTHING WHATSOEVER—at least Scientology gives you a little pop psychology—Gene Scott offered his flock not a damned thing, just piss-ants, supposedly biblical jabberwocky and two opportunities to give him money in one hour! Was L. Ron Hubbard ever that blatant?

The entire thing was bonkers, barking mad, paranoiac, you name it, but I can’t exactly say that it was the fun, fun, fun time I’d promised my friend it would be. In fact, it was probably one of the single most depressing things I have ever witnessed in real life. These people were devolved, the types you might see at a Sarah Palin book signing, but with less intellectual focus. To sit among them was not the cheeky good fun I anticipated. It was just sad, demented and horrifying.

My friend took the lead and told the security guard, “Look, we have to go. Let us out of here, I’m not feeling well, I think I’m going to throw up.” The sea parted immediately with that line, but before we were out the door “Doc’s assistant” was demanding that we stop, come back and report to her immediately! Her attitude was a joke—-like she was Ilse Koch or something—and we told her to go fuck herself and walked out.

We barely said a word in the car. We went to an outdoor cafe for lunch and hardly said a word to each other there either. After an experience like that one—watching cud-chewing fools being parted from their money by a megalomaniac master grifter who didn’t even have to try—we found that there was nothing much left to say.

There’s almost ZERO evidence of the many thousands of hours of television Gene Scott taped over his career to be found on the Internet. This is the largest chunk I could find. Although it doesn’t cut away to Playboy playmates riding Scott’s horses and the normally bullying “Doc” is seen here in a somewhat uncharacteristically jovial mood, this long-winded, apparently drunken diatribe about women wearing pants is still classic mid-period Dr. Gene Scott.
 

 
Werner Herzog’s 1981 film about Dr. Gene Scott, God’s Angry Man:

Posted by Richard Metzger | Discussion
Page 3 of 68  < 1 2 3 4 5 >  Last ›