To remind everyone, the term Xians was coined a few months back by El Lizardo:
<snip> "Well, let's replace the term "Evangelical Christians" with something a bit more precise. Rather than inadvertently insulting any list members or there extended families, I propose to call them Chick Xians. OK? Not rational people of faith and charity, but loony toons wackadoos that believe in the World According to Jack Chick. Catholics aren't Christians and eat the Death Cookie, Muslims worship the Moon, D&D is real witchcraft, and Jesus is a giant on a throne in the clouds with a lightbulb for a head." </snip>
With me so far? We're talking about a group that considers Rush Limbaugh and Bill O'Reilly tools of the Liberal Media while waiting for The Rapture so they can see all 'dem evil dooers cast into the flames of hell. Nutjobs.
So I'm watching the news and I hear about Pat Robertson:
"The Rev. Pat Robertson said President Bush dismissed his warning that the United States would suffer heavy casualties in Iraq and told the television evangelist just before the beginning of the war that "we're not going to have any casualties.""
Which gave me pause.
For those readers outside the United States, it might not be immediately apparent how odd this looks.
Pat Robertson and others of a similar vein have long standing ties with the Republican party.
"In 1979, Rev. Jerry Falwell formed the Moral Majority, a political-action group that mingled conservative ideology and evangelical Christianity. For the Moral Majority, Ronald Reagan was a modern-day prophet whose rhetoric on family values, school choice, muscular patriotism and personal morality echoed their own view. Both Reagan and the Moral Majority saw American culture as a cesspool filled with sludge by '60s-era hippies, immoral Hollywood directors, civil-rights radicals, abortion-loving feminists, the media and liberals."
Although there is a few hints that the Republicans at the time were largely secular, but liked having a voting block they could depend on every four years:
"Reagan courted evangelical Christians like Falwell, Pat Robertson, Jim Bakker and Ralph Reed though he was, in truth, one of the least religious American presidents of the twentieth century."
Jerry Falwell disbanded the Moral Majority in 1989, but: "Within months of its demise, Pat Robertson founded the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ), an organization that sees no contradiction between the goals of "protecting the U.S. Constitution" and repealing abortion rights."
And: "Also active is the Virginia-based Rutherford Institute, founded in 1982 by a Christian lawyer wanting to use the courts to advance religious precepts. It calls itself a "civil liberties organization," but is best known as the group that assisted Paula Jones in her lawsuit against President Clinton."
Still with me here? Around twenty years ago the Moral Majority collapsed, but the ACLJ and the Rutherford Institute took it's place in spreading their version of Theocracy.
Their big bugaboo seems to be gay marriage these days: "Northampton … enacted the Domestic Partnership Ordinance (DPO) to extend benefits to unmarried partners of city employees. Attorney Gregory Hession — who now practices in Belchertown — used Rutherford Institute expertise to spearhead a 78-vote override of the DPO." The article goes on to mention that Northampton Mass. fought against ACLJ lawsuits as well, and eventually dropped the DPO in part because Mass. gay marriage laws made the DPO unnecessary and in part because the city felt they'd have a hard time winning in court.
Now so far we've got a relatively small group trying to enforce their ideas on the majority. Nothing new there I'm afraid, but it does get more interesting:
"Republicans have moved from being cynical opportunists to becoming, so they claim, true believers. National figures such as senators Rick Santorum (R-Penn.), Tom DeLay (R-Texas), James Inhofe (R-Okla.), and Sam Brownback (R-Kan.) wear their born-again credentials on their sleeves, as do Attorney General John Ashcroft, House Majority Leader Dick Armey, and a certain sitting president named George W. Bush."
Back in the 80's the Republicans might have made a deal with the Xians to create a solid voting block, but the Xians got theirs as well. A cynic would say these politicians are mouthing the Xian line to get votes, but more interesting from a DG perspective would be that these politicians are True Believers.
If nothing else, it looks like the Xians are getting ( more? ) political: "An Alabama-based group calling itself the League of Christian Voters (LCV) is busy raising money and registering voters for the 2004 election, with a three-fold goal of electing "Bible believers" to office, supporting "pro-life, pro-family activist candidates," and restoring America's "Judeo-Christian roots." Needless to say, most of those candidates are Republicans."
And they have an international agenda: "The LCV and groups like it are even taking aggressive pro-Israel positions to make inroads among Jews, whom they seldom inform that their position is rooted in Christian apocalyptic beliefs and the hope that Jews will be "completed" through conversion to Christianity."
But as a reminder, these guys are hardly mainstream: "Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell continue to make statements that ought to give Christians pause. Most recently, Robertson came out in support of Liberian dictator/mass murderer Charles Taylor, while Falwell blamed terrorism on the public school system, abortionists, feminists and the American Civil Liberties Union. He even ventured to remark that 9/11 was "probably what we deserve" for coddling immorality."
So that's the background. Xians working their way into the government, mostly via the Republican party. They've got everything from local lawsuits to repeal social programs which go against their values to national programs to influence policy at the federal and international level. They're actively trying to get True Believers into office.
I'd be remiss if I didn't mention Mark has written up an excellent article on integrating the Mythos into the Xians: http://games.groups.yahoo.com/group/dglist/message/5886
Something seems to have changed in the Xian / US Government equation.
Pat Robertson's comments, especially right before an election, are interesting. They seem to amount to a distancing from the current administration, which is surprising considering how friendly the current administration is to Robertson's beliefs. Why the heck would he do that?
In a DG context, suppose the MJ12 steering committee had a talk with W.
After 9/11 and the invasion of Afganistan MJ12 told W. that Iraq didn't have WMD; the Report from the gray's said so. No stockpiles detected.
W. listens to his Xian friends who assure him that there's oodles of WMD around Iraq, and also propose that, since Al-Quaeda and their ilk are upset about US troops in Saudi Arabia, invading Iraq would keep a staging ground in the middle east to protect Israel while moving troops out of Saudi Arabia and eliminating someone who tried to assassinate a US President. Hat trick.
W. advisers also in line with Xian thought review the intelligence and cherry pick bits designed to support their view. Colin Powell is given this intell and sent to the UN to get others on board, despite his objections.
Powell remembers the intell he got right before the 1991 gulf war from "sources which wish to remain anonymous". Those reports detailed exactly where every ammo dump, SAM site and bunker were. The latest intel is of much lower quality. Nevertheless, Powell gives a performance good enough for the security council to pass resolution 1441 which becomes the basis for the US led invasion.
The invasion occurs, and promptly goes to hell.
Now the MJ12 influenced memebers of the Administration are trying to salvage what they can from the debacle in between telling the Xian influenced members "I told you so".
The Xians, far from admitting their mistakes, have used their influence to curb MJ12, replacing George Tenet as CIA director. The Xians don't believe they were wrong, they believe they were sabotaged. They're fighting back.
I'd doubt that the Xian's have heard about NRO:DELTA, but if they're successful in curtailing MJ12's activities they might get the chance. Similarly, MJ12 might be unaware of any Karotechia ties some of the more radical Xians might have.
If the political infighting becomes more than a war of words, then MJ12 could find itself needing the resources of DG.
MJ12 has been focused on the MiGo/Grays. The idea of a bulletproof blond psycho eating the brains of NRO:DELTA types while they pump round after round into him with no effect probably would upset them. Covering up a UFO crash they can deal with, but on this they might call for help. Add in elements of the Black Brotherhood for even more effect.
Alternatively, MJ12 might ask the MiGo for help. Having squads of NRO:DELTA types running around with individual pet electric guns blasting the countryside in search of fun would have Alphonse pulling out what little hair he has left. DG operations to cover up mythos manifestations would proceed at a frantic pace, since MJ12 is a lot of things but subtle isn't one of them. Anything the Xian's do to retaliate would only compound the problem.
Either way, it sounds like fun for the whole family.
A Mythos Xian cult
If we are designing a Mythos cult with a Xian theme, these would be their attributes.
So, they recruit by being the answer to a corrupt secular society. Push all of the buttons that get the folks prone to this mindset all hot and twitchy.
The Christian Identity movement of the US was heavily influenced by the author of 'The Turner Diaries', William Luther Pierce (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Pierce), writing under a pseudonym Andrew MacDonald. Incidentally, the organizations involved in the Christian identity movement and Pierce's National Alliance claim that they are not Nazis. This is pretty obviously PR. The National Alliance owns the Resistance Records label (http://resistance.com/catalog/ ) and a quick scan of their product line shows that their claim is what we in the biz refer to as a "fucking lie".
Hey, isn't it nice to know that these guys are gamers? Here's the blurb for 'Ethnic Cleansing': "The Race War has begun. Your skin is your uniform in this battle for the survival of your kind. The White Race depends on you to secure its existence. Your peoples enemies surround you in a sea of decay and filth that they have brought to your once clean and White nation. "Not one of their numbers shall be spared…….."
Gosh, is it available in D20? Gotta remember that "your skin is your uniform" line, though. That will definitely show up elsewhere.
So, the ObDG gathers quickly. If you are putting together a Xian-themed conspiracy, the Karotechia might be the silent partners. Which makes Nyarly the patron GOO. Endtimes R Us.
Maybe we ought to widen the definition a bit. After all, Rastafarians can be considered Christian - their central belief is that Haile Selassie (formerly Ras (Prince) Tafari Makonnen), the emperor of Ethiopia, was the 111th emperor in the succession of King Solomon. Ergo, he was the last living relative of Jesus H. Christ and therefore someone you should form a religion around. Or something like that. I know it involves smoking a lot of ganja, and seems to produce some kickass music - so overall I'm pretty ecumenical regarding them.
However, I think we could get much better mileage out of the Cathars/Albigensians. They were Christian, but had a radically different cosmology. I like them because of the rich history, the numerous conspiracy links, the pessimistic view of *this* world as the domain of Rex Mundi, their appearance in 'Flicker', the connection to the Merovingians, and the possibility that some of them survived the holocaust and went underground among Christians.
Contempt for secular society: Check. How could they not have contempt for the work of Rex Mundi? Further, it wouldn't take much handwaving to give them contempt for Reality in general. This world is Hell, and only the Endtimes will bring in the better Reality.
A culture of victimization: Hey, they were wiped out in the crusade before the Mideast crusades. It was really ugly and involved a lot of fire and torture and killing babies. They have victim credentials. And maybe a chip on their shoulder about it.
Religious justification for violence: See above.
The desire to install a theocratic government: Hmmmm. Nope, not seeing it. BUT there could be major differences between the beliefs/goals of the outer and inner circles.
The first level would be sort of like a generic Xian cult. The Branch Davidians without the guns and compound. Lots of charitable work helping out runaways and ex-cons to get born again and straighten out their lives along new lines. This level is the friendliest public face and the biggest recruiter/fundraiser. This is the level of soup kitchens and halfway houses, and outsiders won't question their beliefs very hard when they see the good works. I would include a lot of recruiting in prison as well. I wouldn't make the racism overt at this level; and in fact would have them helping a multiethnic group. But for some reason only "Aryans" move on and become counselors. This policy also allows them to spot the potential recruits that have a problem in dealing with other races.
The next level would be more like a Christian Identity organization. This is where the racism and anti-Semitism gets to come out and party. The platform for the public would preach *separatism*, but nudge nudge wink wink here's how to install a Hellfire trigger.
The top level would get introduced to the Cathar cosmology, or at least the new improved version I am envisioning. Two gods - one good and the other evil. We live in the world run by the evil one. After the Endtimes all of the flawed evil matter goes away and there will only be One and we will be part of it and the whole of it for all eternity, hallelujah chunky peanut butter. Oh yeah, and Catholics are the most evil lifeform around and the Church of Rome is the cynosure of all that is vile. You gotta figure they hold a grudge for that attempted genocide business.
A new wrinkle I would like to add to their faith is the belief that JFK was the Antichrist, and that he was killed with a head shot as per prophecy. THEN some malignant faction interfered with his prophesied resurrection, which seriously screwed up the immanentization of the eschaton. Some other conspiracy in the know is interfering with Biblical prophecy in order to keep Rex Mundi on the throne.
If you want to bring in some other conspiracy themes, you could fiddle with the idea that the Antichrist would be blood descendant of Christ. After all, from the Cathar POV the *essence* of Christ is what went up to Heaven after the resurrection, and any DNA left behind would be the stuff of *this* world - Rex Mundi's domain. Now you've got all of the Merovingian, Priory of Sion, Holy Grail, Rastafari stuff to play with. Uh, I suppose that would mean that at some point the Grail bloodline went to Ireland and mingled with the Caennedi line.
All of this stuff makes a good opening for the Order of the Sword of Saint Jerome to (finally) get involved in some Mythos-bashin'. Also, it would allow for the introduction of some of the great stuff in 'Flicker' to show up in the DGverse.
Anyhow, this is the sort of thing that I am working on right now.