Bronze-level articlePat Robertson

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Pat showing off the one-finger victory salute.
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... make not my Father's house a house of merchandise.
John 2:16[1]

Pat Robertson (b. 1930) is a founding member of the 700 Club, an ultra-authoritarian Christian extremist group that funds itself using old school TV telethons. Robertson claims to have a direct link with God like the prophets. He often uses that link on his show to tell God to "cure" people watching who have given him money. But the most famous use of his God talk is predicting disasters to strike against the United States and particular states or cities in response to their support of equal rights for homosexuals. Orlando was one place Pat said God told him would be hit by a meteor.[2] He also likes to get really personal, claiming for example that Ariel Sharon suffered a stroke due to his ungodly division of Israel.[2]

Robertson is an old earth creationist [3] and thinks that a 6,000 year old earth is "not in the Bible" but despite this his organisation sells Young Earth Creationist material.[4] He has also appeared with Al Sharpton in a environmentalist video for the We Can Solve it campaign.

Contents

[edit] Armchair stormchaser and healer

Pat Robertson likes to play armchair stormchaser from his television studio by ordering hurricanes to change course in the name of Jesus, while blaming storms that do hit on peoples' failure to pray them away.[5][6]

In addition to prophet of doom, TV faith healer, and media mogul, Robertson has recently broken into the market of infomercials. He has a range of products from juicers to diet regimes (who wouldn't want the strength and physique of a 83 year old man?) to self-motivation guides that he hawks daily on his show.[7] He has also founded the Christian Broadcasting Network, the propaganda arm of his organization that likes to pretend it's a news show.

[edit] Blaming victims

See the main article on this topic: Denial of the victim

Pat Robertson has often blamed the victims of natural disasters and terrorist attacks for being hit. For example, after 9/11, he agreed with Jerry Falwell that the ACLU, abortionists, etc were responsible for angering God. [8] More recently, he blamed the earthquake in Haiti on a 200 year old pact with the devil for the country's independence. [9] The earthquake in the east USA is also clearly a sign that the second coming of Jesus is near.[10]

By the way, massive tornadoes that level entire towns in Oklahoma are not caused by God but by the insufficient understanding of people who just don't know where to build safely.[11][12] Pat just wanted to let you know...

[edit] Homophobia

Pat revealed his belief in a gay conspiracy theory in August 2013 about gay death rings. Basically, Robertson suggested that men in San Francisco wear very sharp rings that could cut you during a handshake and spread HIV. Or, in July, he advised one 700 Club viewer to never "like" a social-media photo of a gay couple kissing because it would equate to condoning their relationship. Robertson denied he's antigay and said that he actually has "thousands" of gay fans who watch his show looking "to have a better way." He advised a parent whose son came out to investigate his sports coaches in case the son had been molested, because he believes that people turn gay because of child abuse. He advised a woman to be wary of letting her children meet a lesbian friend of hers, as "you don’t want your children to grow up as lesbians." [13]

[edit] Demagogue much?

In the wake of the shooting at a Sikh temple in Oak Creek, Wisconsin in which 7 people (including the gunman, Wade Michael Page) were killed, Robertson was his usual deranged perceptive self when he proclaimed that the gunman (a known white supremacist[14]) attacked the temple because "people who are atheists, they hate God".[15]

[edit] Charity money used wrongly

From here, however, Robertson's crazy preacher mentality starts to take a more sinister turn. The 700 Club runs a charity called Operation Blessing which supposedly helps people in need in Third World countries. But it has been shown that Robertson uses it as a front group to push his own nefarious financial doings in Africa. One terrible example was in the mid 90's when Robertson ran a telethon to pay for planes for Operation Blessing to remove refugees from camps in Rwanda. Instead, it was later discovered by a reporter from The Virginian-Pilot that Operation Blessing's planes were transporting diamond-mining equipment for the Robertson-owned African Development Corporation, a venture Robertson had established in cooperation with Zaire's then-dictator, Mobutu Sese Seko, whom Robertson had befriended earlier in 1993. According to Operation Blessing documents, Robertson personally owned the planes used for Operation Blessing airlifts.

[edit] Financial entanglement with dictators

Another example is his use of the the CBN propaganda wing to secure his financial entanglements with dictators. Robertson repeatedly supported former President of Liberia Charles Taylor in various episodes of his 700 Club program during the United States involvement in the Liberian Civil War in June and July of 2003. Robertson accuses the U.S. State Department of giving Bush bad advice in supporting Taylor's ousting as president, and of trying "as hard as they can to destabilize Liberia."[16]

Robertson was criticized for failing to mention in his broadcasts his $8,000,000 (USD) investment in a Liberian gold mine.[17] Taylor had been indicted by the United Nations for war crimes at the time of Robertson's support, and in 2012 he was sentenced to 50 years in prison for “aiding and abetting the widespread and systematic commission of crimes against the civilian population of Sierra Leone”. [18]

[edit] Failed prophecies of the Second Coming

Pat Robertson has prophesied that:

  • 1980 would "be a year of sorrow and bloodshed that will have no end soon, for the world is being torn apart, and my [God's, not Pat's - at least we hope!] kingdom shall rise from the ruins of it."
  • The Great Tribulation would begin in October or November 1982, following an invasion of Israel by Russia
  • There would be a worldwide economic collapse in 1985
  • Jay Rockefeller (D-West By God Virginia) would be elected President of the United States in 1996. (Obviously he's a candidate for being the Antichrist, because, well, he's a Rockefeller.)
  • After his prophecy of 1982 failed to pass, he changed it to 2007, because 2007 is 40 years since the Six-Day War[wp] and 400 years since the founding of Jamestown, Virginia in 1607. Israel and the Six Day War often figure in date-setting attempts by End Times preachers, but what Jamestown has to do with it is anyone's guess (unless Pat thinks modern Virginia has a central role in the End Times due to his own inflated view of Virginia Beach-based CBN's importance in the overall scheme of things.)

So far his track record is 0 for 5, although to be generous one could say his 1980 prophecy was accurate inasmuch as the Iran-Iraq War and the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan both date from that year, with the consequences of both still playing out today with no end in sight.

It should be noted that Pat Robertson, unlike many evangelicals, does not believe in a pre-tribulation rapture. He believes the Second Coming of Jesus will be after a 7-year Great Tribulation, during which the Antichrist will rise to power and the prophecies in the Book of Daniel and Book of Revelation will take place.

In addition, Pat is strongly under the impression that Jews must convert to Christianity for the End Times to kick in. Whether the lack of this precondition has anything to do with his current piss-poor track record as a prophet is left strictly up to the reader.[19]

On the other hand, it should be noted that Pat hates direct competition, calling other would-be prophets "nutty" and their prophecies originating "from the pit of Hell", among other things.[20]

[edit] Books

One of Pat Robertson's books is the 1992 book The New World Order. The book promotes the New World Order conspiracy. That book cites among its sources, anti-Semitic author Eustace Mullins. In addition, Constance Cumbey has accused Robertson of plagiarizing wholesale passages from her 1983 book The Hidden Dangers of the Rainbow in The New World Order.

Ol' Pat felt left behind after all the bruhaha over the Left Behind books and he decided to try his hand at an apocalyptic "end times" novel in 1996: End of the Age. The novel has civilization as we know it end from an asteroid impact and massive tidal wave in California. Sound familiar? It should - it's an obvious rip-off from Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle's 1977 science fiction novel Lucifer's Hammer. Only this time the premise is Christian, so of course the Antichrist comes to power and assumes the presidency of the United States who takes orders from a shadowy Middle Eastern worshipper of the Hindu god Shiva and makes the New Age the official state religion, along with the usual mark of the beast stuff, while the remaining Christians eventually gather in an isolated Colorado compound to fight back with, what else, a Christian television station. Doesn't that bit about an ingathering in Colorado sound familiar too? Really, it's not worth the bother. Read Lucifer's Hammer instead.

[edit] Spirit of Antichrist

Who according to Pat Robertson is the Antichrist?

You say you're supposed to be nice to the Episcopalians and the Presbyterians and the Methodists and this, that, and the other thing. Nonsense. I don't have to be nice to the spirit of the Antichrist. [21]

The answer is a bit vague but certainly many Christian denominations that disagree with him are part of the Antichrist thing.

[edit] Pat Robertson, Dark Ops Man of The Cloth

In 2005, Robertson called for the assassination of a democratically-elected leader of an independent foreign nation, Venezuela, live on television.[22] Of Hugo Chavez, he said "if he thinks we're trying to assassinate him, I think that we really ought to go ahead and do it. It's a whole lot cheaper than starting a war." Unusually for a right-winger, Robertson soon apologised,[23] sort of, but not before he'd lost the support of the right-wing Christians he claimed to represent.[24] Fellow televangelist Jack van Impe called Robertson Osami (sic) bin Laden for his comments on Chavez.

[edit] Speaking of Cloth...

Pat is fond of the strange idea that rebuking clothes and other inanimate objects with prayer will rid them of the demons that can attach to them. No, he really did say that.[25]

[edit] Claimed physical prowess

Robertson claims to have leg-pressed 2,000 pounds with the aid of his special protein shake.[26]

[edit] Reasonable stances

[edit] Pot legalization

One rare reasonable position Pat Robertson takes is his support for legalization of marijuana and the ending of mandatory prison sentences for possession of the drug, saying it should be "legal like alcohol."[27]

[edit] Age of the Earth

In another wonderful stopped clock moment, Robertson's commentary on the Nye-Ham debate of February 2014 is surprisingly reasonable.[28]

[edit] Other examples of how weird Pat can be

Pat thinks that marriage is a great thing, unless your wife has Alzheimer's. Then it's permissable to divorce her, ASAP.[29]

Pat also thinks that adoption is a great thing unless the kid is some damn furreigner or grew up "weird" due to sexual abuse or food deprivation, in which case it isn't.[30]

Pat's views on domestic battery are also a trifle insane incoherent unenlightened odd, to say the least.[31]

Pat's odd response to the French debate over legalizing same-sex marriage was a rambling screed that asserted that the Illuminati caused the French Revolution.[32] No shit.

Pat thinks Dungeons and Dragons will lead gamers onto the road of perdition[33] (no, not the movie), a tiresome old moral panic meme if there ever was one.[34]

Pat thinks that "XX-Rated" Movies Are a Gateway to Demonic Possession.[35]

[edit] And just plain dishonesty

Pat chastised the 2012 Republican Presidential candidates about being open about their positions.[36]

[edit] Notable quotes

  • "Feminism is a socialist, anti-family, political movement that encourages women to leave their husbands, kill their children, practice witchcraft, destroy capitalism and become lesbians."[37]
  • "When lawlessness is abroad in the land, the same thing will happen here that happened in Nazi Germany. Many of those people involved in Adolph Hitler were Satanists. Many of them were homosexuals. The two things seem to go together."[38]
  • "[Homosexuals] want to come into churches and disrupt church services and throw blood all around and try to give people AIDS and spit in the face of ministers."[39]
  • "You know what they do in San Francisco? Some of the gay community there, they want to get people. So, if they've got the stuff, they'll have a ring. You shake hands and the ring's got a little thing where you cut your finger, Really. I mean it's that kind of vicious stuff, which would be the equivalent of murder."[40]
  • "I know one man who was impotent who gave AIDS to his wife and the only thing they did was kiss."
  • "I have a zero tolerance for sanctimonious morons who try to scare people."[41]

[edit] See also

[edit] Footnotes

  1. John 2:16
  2. 2.0 2.1 NPR story on crazy Pat
  3. PP - Old Earth
  4. Even Pat Robertson Denies that the Earth is 6,000 Years Old
  5. MSNBC: Pat Robertson blames tornadoes on failure to pray
  6. Pat Robertson's CBN Suggests God Moved Hurricane to Protect Republicans
  7. CBN's "health" page a plethora of pseudoscience that doesn't mention Evolution
  8. Falwell and Robertson on The 700 Club after 9/11
  9. Pat Robertson on Haiti Disaster
  10. Earthquake Sign From God - Pat Robertson
  11. http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=rSp7fzgCuqI
  12. You Won’t Believe Who Pat Robertson Blames for Tornadoes, The Big Slice
  13. http://www.advocate.com/politics/2013/12/13/phobie-awards-13-worst-people-year?page=0,6
  14. Alleged Sikh temple shooter former member of Skinhead band,Southern Poverty Law Center
  15. Pat Robertson: Sikh temple massacre because ‘atheists hate God’, The Raw Story
  16. "Robertson Defends Liberia's President", Alan Cooperman, The Washington Post, July 10 2003.
  17. "Pat Robertson's Gold", Colbert I. King, September 22 2001, The Washington Post.
  18. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-24537834
  19. Robertson: Jews Must Convert To Christianity To Usher In End Times,Right Wing Watch
  20. Pat Robertson, Still Lacking Self-Awareness, Calls Disaster Prophecies 'Nutty' and 'From the Pit of Hell', Right Wing Watch
  21. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0149408/quotes
  22. Media Matters
  23. Apology
  24. The American View
  25. Robertson: Worth Praying Over Clothes to Rebuke Demons, Right Wing Watch
  26. CBN Leg-press explanation
  27. Pat Robertson Says Marijuana Use Should be Legal
  28. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I37wUKtX810
  29. Robertson's Marital Advice: Divorce Your Wife With Alzheimers, Right Wing Watch
  30. More Solid Advice From Pat Robertson: Be Careful About Adopting Children, Right Wing Watch
  31. Pat Robertson Tells Man To Move To Saudi Arabia So He Can Beat His Wife (Legally, of Course), Gawker
  32. Robertson: Gay Marriage Advocates, Following In Steps of Illuminati, Out to Destroy God and Family, Right Wing Watch
  33. Robertson: 'Demonic' Dungeons & Dragons 'Literally Destroyed People's Lives', Right Wing Watch
  34. Back to the Future: Pat Robertson’s D&D Scare Flashback, Geekdad
  35. "XX-Rated" Movies Are a Gateway to Demonic Possession
  36. http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/tue-october-25-2011/indecision-2012---the-great-right-hope---the-180-club
  37. Feminism leads to infanticide, witchcraft and homosexual socialism - true story!
  38. Warning of the obvious link between Nazism and homosexuality
  39. Robertson explains why so many churches worldwide are attacked by blood throwing AIDS infected homosexuals
  40. Pat Robertson Claims Gays Deliberately Spread AIDS Using Sharp Jewelry, Talking Points Memo (NOTE: even The 700 Club refused to air this one. The learning curve, it seems, is sloping upward for once)
  41. Oh, the irony.
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