"The Family" and the C Street Center

This organization and its Washington DC boarding house scares the living crap out of me. Partly because of its beliefs and also its influence. In a time where a presidential candidate serving on an educational board with an anti-war terrorist/radical is a political issue and that is discussed in the press, it amazing there isn't more exposure on this organization and its ties to several members of congress. A journalist Jeff Sharlet lived with the group for a month and wrote a book about it called "The Family: Secret Fundamentalism at the Heart of American Power." i plan to pick it up soon.

Is anyone familiar with this organization or have opinions on it?

Here are some quotes from wiki:

[quote]The Family believes that the elite win power by the will of God, who uses them for his purposes. Its mission is to help the powerful understand their role in God’s plan. The Family represents "Jesus plus nothing," as its leader, Doug Coe, puts it, the "totalitarianism of God," in the words of an early Family leader, a vision that encompasses not just social issues but also the kind of free-market fundamentalism that is the real object of devotion for core members and insiders. At the heart of the Family's spiritual advice for its proxies in Congress is the conviction that the market's invisible hand represents the guidance of God, and that God wants his "new chosen" to look out for one another.

The Fellowship is associated with many influential American leaders, including many current and former Senators and members of the United States Congress, executive branch officials, military officers, including several Chairmen of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and the heads of humanitarian aid organizations, as well as foreign leaders and ambassadors. According to David Kuo, former Special Assistant to President George W. Bush and Deputy Director of the White House Office of Faith Based and Community Initiatives, "The Fellowship's reach into governments around the world is almost impossible to overstate or even grasp."[5] Core members and associates of the Fellowship deny that the Fellowship exists.[6] The Fellowship has been the subject of controversy for its secrecy, involvement in sex scandals, ties to third-world dictators and oppressive regimes, and approving references to Adolf Hitler, terrorist and 9/11 mastermind Osama bin Laden, Cambodian despot Pol Pot, and the Mafia. It reportedly is built on the "Hitler Concept," which is a covenant amongst a leadership cadre comprised of members of a political avant garde.[quote]

Below is an interview with Jeff Sharlet. NSFW. The section where he talks about the leaders saying to a congressman that if he learned the congressman raped children it would be acceptable because the congressman is one of the "Chosen" so the normal rules don't apply made my jaw drop.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WYv6B...

I've got this book, but I have not started it yet. I've read a number of articles on this group, and it's hard to know what to make of it. They portray themselves outwardly as just a devotional group for religious people, but the people who've reported from inside tell quite a different story. Still, isn't this just another special interest group? Certainly even these guys are covered by free speech and freedom of assembly.

Robear wrote:
I've got this book, but I have not started it yet. I've read a number of articles on this group, and it's hard to know what to make of it. They portray themselves outwardly as just a devotional group for religious people, but the people who've reported from inside tell quite a different story. Still, isn't this just another special interest group? Certainly even these guys are covered by free speech and freedom of assembly.

Yes, and Reverend Wright didn't break the law either, but he still changed a few minds about the nature of our current sitting president. I don't think Mogg is saying they're outside their rights and must be shut down. He's just a little concerned that there appears to be an extreme fundamentalist organization in our capitol and no one ever mentions it.

LobsterMobster wrote:
Robear wrote:
I've got this book, but I have not started it yet. I've read a number of articles on this group, and it's hard to know what to make of it. They portray themselves outwardly as just a devotional group for religious people, but the people who've reported from inside tell quite a different story. Still, isn't this just another special interest group? Certainly even these guys are covered by free speech and freedom of assembly.

Yes, and Reverend Wright didn't break the law either, but he still changed a few minds about the nature of our current sitting president. I don't think Mogg is saying they're outside their rights and must be shut down. He's just a little concerned that there appears to be an extreme fundamentalist organization in our capitol and no one ever mentions it.

Sort of like a real-life Elders of Zion only fundy christian?

LobsterMobster wrote:
Robear wrote:
I've got this book, but I have not started it yet. I've read a number of articles on this group, and it's hard to know what to make of it. They portray themselves outwardly as just a devotional group for religious people, but the people who've reported from inside tell quite a different story. Still, isn't this just another special interest group? Certainly even these guys are covered by free speech and freedom of assembly.

Yes, and Reverend Wright didn't break the law either, but he still changed a few minds about the nature of our current sitting president. I don't think Mogg is saying they're outside their rights and must be shut down. He's just a little concerned that there appears to be an extreme fundamentalist organization in our capitol and no one ever mentions it.

The first rule of The Family, don't talk about The Family. I think the name is weird...it sounds like something out of a gangster movie.

Ulairi wrote:
LobsterMobster wrote:
Robear wrote:
I've got this book, but I have not started it yet. I've read a number of articles on this group, and it's hard to know what to make of it. They portray themselves outwardly as just a devotional group for religious people, but the people who've reported from inside tell quite a different story. Still, isn't this just another special interest group? Certainly even these guys are covered by free speech and freedom of assembly.

Yes, and Reverend Wright didn't break the law either, but he still changed a few minds about the nature of our current sitting president. I don't think Mogg is saying they're outside their rights and must be shut down. He's just a little concerned that there appears to be an extreme fundamentalist organization in our capitol and no one ever mentions it.

The first rule of The Family, don't talk about The Family. I think the name is weird...it sounds like something out of a gangster movie.

I was thinking it sounded like something from The Omega Man.

I've listened to a few podcasts about 'The Family' including an interview with the author of the book. Their philosophy strikes me as being very dangerous. I heard the same thing about heinous behaviour on the part of their members being excused because they were 'The Chosen.' When challenged they sited examples from the bible where biblical figures committed despicable acts but still remained in God's good graces.

A group like this seems like small potatoes compared to the the larger political/religious groups out there. They are not cloaked in secrecy and they publicly announce their intent to make the USA a religious state. Almost all republican officials kowtow to these powerful organizations and openly profess that they hold the Bible over the Constitution.

Just a few:

Southern Baptist Convention
Cristian Coalition
Focus on the Family
Moral Majority
Family Research Council

There are also the thinks tanks like the Heritage Foundation and the American Enterprise Institute, which operate under a cloak of intellectualism.

Those beholden to the fundamantalist factions in the country do not need a secret house to make policy decisions. They are done in the open and used to get votes.

Yeah, they aren't doing anything illegal, yet. There may be some shady stuff regarding Ensign's family covering up for him, payments to the mistress's family, etc. But so far I'm not sure the Family has done anything illegal. However, they fall right in line with the Dominionist branch of Christianity. Associated groups being groups like YWAM and University of the Nations. They believe in using force to control countries around the world, to bring them under Christian law to prepare for Jesus' return. That's dangerous stuff and I think people should know that not only do these people exist, but they're infiltrating the ranks of govt., trying to elevate one of their own to President in this nation and others.

I actually have close relatives in this group. I love them dearly, but their belief system scares the bejeezus out of me and I wouldn't be shocked if they don't make more noise in the future, possibly even criminal activity.

Remember that ridiculous fictional documentary that came out before the 2004 election? The "Road to 9/11". It was produced by people funded by and associated with the same group.

Sounds like a cult. In fact, sounds an awful lot like the Boston Church of Christ, which is a special kind of crazy (and has been made illegal in several locales).

DSGamer wrote:
Yeah, they aren't doing anything illegal, yet. There may be some shady stuff regarding Ensign's family covering up for him, payments to the mistress's family, etc. But so far I'm not sure the Family has done anything illegal. However, they fall right in line with the Dominionist branch of Christianity. Associated groups being groups like YWAM and University of the Nations. They believe in using force to control countries around the world, to bring them under Christian law to prepare for Jesus' return. That's dangerous stuff and I think people should know that not only do these people exist, but they're infiltrating the ranks of govt., trying to elevate one of their own to President in this nation and others.

I actually have close relatives in this group. I love them dearly, but their belief system scares the bejeezus out of me and I wouldn't be shocked if they don't make more noise in the future, possibly even criminal activity.

Remember that ridiculous fictional documentary that came out before the 2004 election? The "Road to 9/11". It was produced by people funded by and associated with the same group.

I agree. I am just saying that a lot of this is done openly. Politicians are good at keeping their distance, but they still court these groups openly, because they have a motivated base of loyalists who vote in large numbers. Republican politics, at least, is now run from the pulpit. I hope it shifts back someday, but we will see. They got their teeth kicked in in the last round of elections, but the Dems. are no friends to American people either. They will f*ck it up, let their promises lapse, and the religious right will come roaring back on the backs of their failure.

We need a Parliamentary style of govt. The two party system has outlived its usefulness.

I bought the book over the weekend for my plane trip back, and the few chapters I've read were a really good read. It's also kind of... mildly disturbing.

DSGamer wrote:
We need a Parliamentary style of govt. The two party system has outlived its usefulness.

Our system naturally moves toward two parties, even when a third party gets substantive support. If a third party did gain traction, it would be at the expense of one of the current major parties.

heavyfeul wrote:
DSGamer wrote:
We need a Parliamentary style of govt. The two party system has outlived its usefulness.

Our system naturally moves toward two parties, even when a third party gets substantive support. If a third party did gain traction, it would be at the expense of one of the current major parties.

The problem is you don't have a proper Parliamentary system as DS points out. In a proper system two parties would not be able to draw electoral boundaries in a case of open gerrymandering nor would they be allowed to outspend smaller parties at election time. And don't hold the Britishor Canadian system up as a good example either as they employ plurality voting system (like the US) which in the case of Britain ensures that Labour Party only needs 24% of the vote to hold power. All of that strikes me as wholly un-democratic.

Any party that isn't the Republicans or Democrats in the US will always face an uphill struggle even if the gain the odd seat in Congress. Yes, the US is a two party state but its two particular parties not any two parties.