Crikey Says

Sep 3, 2013

Crikey says: beware of planting crops together

How-to-vote cards are a delicate business. And a costly one, Crikey has learned. Bernard Keane on why the Coalition is right to cap its Direct Action climate fund. How Australia can make a difference to Syria. Will either party do enough on housing? And wacky memorabilia from the trail (we'd rather forget).

Kevin Rudd is no Jed Bartlett. He's certainly no Aaron Sorkin, the creator of liberal TV watchers' favourite fake president on The West Wing. The Prime Minister's quip on the ABC's Q&A last night to a pastor questioning marriage equality in the face of biblical precedent -- "the Bible also says that slavery is a natural condition" -- won a hearty round of applause and had gay marriage supporters cheering. But Bartlett, via Sorkin, said it just a little better:

"I wanted to ask you a couple of questions while I had you here. I'm interested in selling my youngest daughter into slavery as sanctioned in Exodus 21:7. She's a Georgetown sophomore, speaks fluent Italian, always cleared the table when it was her turn. What would a good price for her be? While thinking about that, can I ask another? My chief of staff, Leo McGarry, insists on working on the Sabbath. Exodus 35:2 clearly says he should be put to death. Am I morally obligated to kill him myself, or is it OK to call the police? Here's one that's really important 'cause we've got a lot of sports fans in this town: touching the skin of a dead pig makes one unclean. Leviticus 11:7. If they promise to wear gloves, can the Washington Redskins still play football? Can Notre Dame? Can West Point? Does the whole town really have to be together to stone my brother John for planting different crops side by side? Can I burn my mother in a small family gathering for wearing garments made from two different threads? Think about those questions, would you?"
A little more Sorkin and Rudd might just have won this thing.

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12 thoughts on “Crikey says: beware of planting crops together

  1. Sam

    And those are all Old Testament. I do believe Rudd was pointing to a passage in the New Testament, which doesn’t contain quite as much wackiness.

  2. Malcolm Hutton

    I think Rudd said we should forget the Old Testament and stick to the New Testament, then went on about it promoting love.

    IT DOESN’T. Luke 14:26 commands that one has to hate your mother, hate your father and hate your sons and daughters. The usual excuse from the Church and I guess from Rudd too is that it means ‘Love Less’. Nonsense. The Greek original uses the word ‘Miseo’ and this can only mean hate, loathe or detest. No real god would say such a thing, or leave any doubt. A true god would have used the words ‘Agapa Ligotera’ – Love Less – if that was the intentended meaning.
    Always amazes me how the religious have no idea what is in the Bible, Talmud or Koran. Malcolm

  3. Thomas McLoughlin

    It’s a classic.

    Interesting that I posted this West Wing exerpt on Facebook strings about 5 days ago via youtube and the text of the script with it.

    What goes around comes around?

  4. CML

    What a ridiculous editorial.
    If he had said all that, Tony Jones would have interrupted him after the second line!
    And for your information, Rudd won ‘this thing’ anyway. Whoever writes these stupid editorials needs to get a life.
    The MSM are doing just fine at dropping a bucket on Rudd. We don’t need Crikey to join the other morons!!

  5. klewso

    “I’m a religious thunder-mentalist – and I Voat!”

  6. zut alors

    I’m confused. A bloke is wicked enough to work on the Sabbath and therefore, according to Exodus 35:2, must be put to death.

    But who’s going to do the dirty deed? – the Old Testament also decrees ‘thou shalt not kill.’

    They haven’t thought it through.

  7. klewso

    Zut, see the fine print “killing” : “putting to death”? Seems to depend on who’s doing it?

  8. zut alors

    I’m still confused.

    If a minister, priest or rabbi works on the Sabbath by gathering their flock and preaching etc does this mean they, too, must be put to death? They receive either accommodation, allowances, perks and a salary for activities conducted on the Sabbath – this isn’t defined as working…?

  9. Pointy Hatted Party Monster

    Oh come along, Malcolm. That’s a tragically shallow and misguided way to treat any text, much less a religious one. Your approach is the exact thing we would expect from a fundamentalist, chopping and changing with the text to suit their own purposes. Yes, I agree that these sorts of people know nothing of the love of Christ and do all they can to subvert what Christianity is all about. You’re right to speak against them.

    But there are a lot of us who don’t identify with that sort of high-minded ignorance, and for whom the religious motivations of their good works amounts to a guilty secret. It’s a pity those dreadful Pharisees in the Australian Christian Lobby don’t bother to take up the interests of those of us who see feeding the hungry as more important than controlling the boundaries of middle-class religion.

    In Luke 14, Jesus is talking about the cost of discipleship — that is all the stuff about love your neighbour, do good to your enemeis, feed the hungry, heal the sick etc — NOT commending hatred of family as an end in itself or as a mark of righteousness. The point is that love of family should not take priority over doing the right thing. When you see someone starving, don’t ask about their class origins: just give them something to eat.

    How about you read the whole chapter before blowing off about something that isn’t there:

    Then come back and tell us exactly how the gospel commends hatred and not love.

  10. AR

    That pathetic pastor looked like he’d just seen Jesus kissing John the Beloved, after querying why Krudd was going against what JC said re gay marriage. Which was precisely zero,
    Leviticus, that’s a different pile of steaming … but.

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