July 18, 2005

Gorenfeld's Latest Moon Expose`

John Gorenfeld has an article in the American Prospect detailing the Rev. Moon's ties to North Korea and to the political right in America. It has long been known that Moon has been pumping hard currency into North Korea, but Gorenfeld provides some shocking numbers as well as evidence of Moon's involvement in an arms deal that Moon was involved in that enhanced North Korea's missile capability. He also puts the lie to the oft-repeated claims by Moon's employees at the Washington Times that they have complete editorial independence. The long history of the Washington Times' running what are little more than press releases from Moon's various front groups as "news" stories is more than enough to destroy that claim. He also makes note of the fact that one of Moon's longtime followers, Josette Shiner, was just nominated by Bush to be undersecretary of state for economic, business and agricultural affairs. Shiner was also, not coincidentally, the Washington Times former managing editor who was tapped to interview deceased North Korean dictator Kim Il-Sung for the newspaper in 1992.

Posted by Ed at 10:05 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

April 13, 2005

The Lunatic Rev. Moon

Note: My friend DarkSyde posted an entry on his diary at DailyKos pointing people here for information about Rev. Moon. It's been a few weeks since I last wrote about Moon, so I thought I'd repost the one that started it all, my fisking of the insanely ridiculous full page ad that Moon took out around the world in 2002. Here it is in all its glory:


On July 4, 2002, the Unification Church (a.k.a. the Moonies) took out a full page ad in newspapers all around the world that just has to be seen to be believed. I'm going to reprint parts of that ad here, skipping all of the statements by all of the "underlings" of the great religions, along with my own comments interspersed in italics. And at the end, I'll tell you why this is important.

------------------------------------

"A Cloud of Witnesses: The Saints’ Testimonies to the True Parents"

Preface: What follows is a complex document. It was produced at a seminar in spirit world for leaders of the five great religions.(A seminar in the spirit world? I'm just picturing Jesus and Buddha and Confucius milling around in the hallway outside a conference room at the Valhalla Holiday Inn, eating stale danishes and waiting for Rev. Moon to take the makeshift stage and sell motivational videos) It includes testimonies to the True Parents, Reverend and Mrs. Sun Myung Moon, a letter from God, messages from four communist leaders, and a resolution written and adopted by the representatives of the five great religions. (Holy shit! Even Michael Eisner couldn't put together a party list like that. But where is Paris Hilton? She would never miss a party with that many A-listers. And I can't believe Shirley MacLaine would miss this event!)

To take this all in, we advise you to relax and open your mind for a while.(Of course. It goes without saying that if you don't buy this load of bullshit, it can only be because you just don't have an open mind) If you believe in the existence of a higher dimension of reality, of God, of an invisible realm, this will call you to reflect on the implications of that belief. We believe in the spirit world and in the continuation of individual identity from this world to that one. All the passed-away saints are residing in spirit world. Since Jesus called him in 1935, the Reverend Sun Myung Moon has carried on a ministry to spirit world in parallel with his ministry on Earth. He has sought to gather the founders and saints of all faiths around one table of unity. In recent times, he has ministered to spirits in hell and opened the gates of their liberation. This collection of testimonies is one fruit of that ministry.

The Family Federation for World Peace and Unification is publishing this document throughout America and in 40 countries worldwide. This proclamation is our responsibility to let all humankind know the works of God in our age.

This message has significant practical as well as spiritual import. It is a unifying message, addressing believers of all faiths as one global family. As such it is intended to draw all men and women to the one Holy God and help bring world peace. Peace will not arrive through politics or economic development alone, as crucial as these things are. The foundation for peace is common faith in God and practice of true parental, conjugal and familial love. Hence the value of True Parents, and the messianic power of their words and works.

A committee or coalition cannot instigate true love; the responsibility for this devolves to substantial human exemplars. The testimonies that follow bear witness that the Reverend and Mrs. Sun Myung Moon are those exemplars and have opened the gates for all people to inherit, through them, God’s completed salvation, prophesied in all scriptures.

The testimonies appeal to Father Moon’s teachings and works as the evidence of their veracity. We encourage the reader to move beyond these messages and duly pursue study of his teachings and works. Those of us who have followed Father Moon’s leadership confirm the testimonies of the saints. We believe in God’s work for world peace, to bring His kingdom upon the Earth and in Heaven. With that love and hope in our hearts, we recommend these messages to you.

The Editors
Family Federation for World Peace, International

Ceremony in spirit world for the adoption and proclamation of a written resolution by the representatives of the five great religions.

The written resolution of the representatives of the five great religions


1. Christianity: Jesus and 12 other representatives
2. Confucianism: Confucius and 12 other representatives (including 3 additional people)(Leave it to the Chinese to have more people than any other group)
3. Buddhism: Buddha and 12 other representatives
4. Islam: Muhammad and 12 other representatives
5. Hinduism: Three people among the 12 representatives

(What? Where are the Jews? You couldn't get Moses or David to drop in and lend a hand? For crying out loud, you could have at least gotten Alan King. He'll play any room. This is a major oversight. Leaving the Jews off the major religions list is like leaving Madonna out of a book called Great Skanks in History.)

This report was sent by Dr. Sang Hun Lee and received by reporter Mrs. Young Soon Kim, between December 19 and December 27, 2001, at the Asan Campus of Sun Moon University.

Ceremony in spirit world for the adoption and proclamation of a written resolution by representatives of the five great religions

Order of the Ceremony:

Date and time: Noon, December 25, 2001 (I love the fact that they give specific dates and times for this entirely fictional event, as though that lends credibility to the story)

Master of Ceremonies: Dr. Sang Hun Lee

1. Proclamation of the opening of the ceremony: We will now conduct the ceremony for the adoption and proclamation of a written resolution by the representatives of the five great religions.
2. Recitation of the Family Pledge
3. Proclamation of the written resolution (Jesus)
4. Representative prayer (Jesus)
5. Three cheers of victory, led by Mohammed - Victory for God, Victory for True Parents, Victory for the five great religions (And Go Yankees!)

The ceremony concluded with applause.(Except Jesus, because his hands whistle when he tries to clap)

Seating Arrangement:

1. The front seats were filled by the leading representatives of the five great religions.
2. Behind the leading representatives, the 12 other representatives of each religion sat.
3. In the back of the arena, 120 representatives from each religion sat.

(One has to wonder what the meal was. The Muslims won't eat pork or shellfish, the Hindus won't touch beef, and some of the Christians can't eat meat on Fridays. Probably just fried manna.)

Jesus' Prayer:

We of the five great religions, attending God above us and True Parents horizontally, pledge and proclaim that we will go the way of absolute obedience, in order to correct all of the wrongs committed throughout history.

I report this in the name of Jesus, of a central blessed family. Amen, Amen, Amen.(Is there something slightly egomaniacal about saying a prayer in your own name? What's the etiquette here?)

The written resolution by representatives of the five great religions

1. We resolve and proclaim that God is the Parent of all humankind.
2. We resolve and proclaim that Reverend Sun Myung Moon is the Savior, Messiah, Second Coming and True Parent of all humanity.
3. We resolve and proclaim that the Unification Principle is a message of peace for the salvation of humanity and the gospel for the Completed Testament Age.
4. We resolve and proclaim that we will accomplish the peaceful unification of the cosmos through “living for others” while transcending religion, nationality and race, centering on true love. (Except for gays, of course - they don't get to play our reindeer games)
5. The representatives of the five great religions resolve and proclaim that we will harmonize with one another, unite and move forward, in order to bring about the nation of God and world peace, while attending True Parents.

This has been resolved and proclaimed by Jesus, the leading representative of the group of representatives of the five great religions, Christianity, Confucianism, Buddhism, Islam and Hinduism, at noon on December 25, 2001.

1. Christianity

Jesus: Reverend Sun Myung Moon! Thou art the Second Coming who inaugurated the Completed Testament Age! The 120 people, who have brought light to the history of Christianity, pledge to take part in all that the True Parents do, and resolve to strive toward the ideal, the original garden where there is no original sin, through the guidance, the words of the Completed Testament, and the Unification Principle, of the Savior and Messiah, the Reverend Sun Myung Moon. (2001.12.19)

(Skipping the similar testaments by the 12 Christian leaders)

2. Confucianism

Confucius: The 120 figures representing Confucianism pledge to accept the Unification Principle as the truth and to believe and attend the Reverend Sun Myung Moon as the Savior and Messiah in the Completed Testament Age. (2001.12.19)(P.S. Man who have sex in strawberry patch have piece on earth)

(Skipping the similar statements by the 15 representatives of Confucianism)

3. Buddhism

Buddha: Reverend Sun Myung Moon! True Parents! The 120 people of Buddhism vow and pledge to advance toward a movement of peace that will guide humanity in a new direction. We pledge to attend God as the Parent of humankind and Reverend Sun Myung Moon as a True Parent, and to equip ourselves with the Unification Principle and Unification Thought. (2001.12.20)(The Zen koan of the Moonies - what is the sound of millions of morons falling for such nonsense?)

(Skipping the similar testaments from Buddhists - though the one from Richard Gere talking about how the Rev. Moon got him in touch with his gerbil's true Buddha nature was nothing short of inspiring)

4. Islam

Muhammad: Since I, Muhammad, encountered the Unification Principle and met the Reverend Sun Myung Moon, my worldview has changed. I am now confident in everything. Everything seems new to me now. I am filled with optimism and hope. (Ever since I ordered Tony Robbins' success tapes, my life is better. I bought half of the San Fernando valley with nothing but my good looks and Camel Cash because Tony told me I could) This is because I have come to know the fundamental will of God and that God is the Parent of humankind. I know now that this is the way I must go. The basic way of life is to live in attendance to our vertical and horizontal parents.

I cry out: Victory for God! Victory for Reverend Sun Myung Moon, the True Parent, Messiah and Savior! All Muslims follow the will of Muhammad. Allah, whom you have been following, was actually God, Jehovah. There is only one God for humankind and God is our Parent. I offer my pledge. I pledge to have faith in everything and follow the will of the Eternal God. (2001.12.26)

(Skipping the similar testaments from Muslim leaders - though the Ayatollah Khomeini's declaration of jihad against Disney was an especially nice touch)

5. Hinduism.

I'll just skip the three representatives of Hinduism.

6. Four Representative Communist Leaders. (It's a nice touch getting the atheists in on the act. Everyone loves a good after-deathbed conversion)

1. Karl Marx (1818-1883, The founder of Marxism; born in Trier, Germany.): I, Marx, affirm God’s existence and that He is the Parent of all humankind. I denied God and shouted loudly with confidence to the extent that people believed me more than God. Now I’d like to reveal my experience with God to the whole world. I felt that my theoretical paradigm was crumbling as I listened to the Godism lecture. At the same time my pride was damaged severely. When I listened to Godism, I thought it was a dream, but it was not. Then a beam of light came into my heart like a red-hot bullet.

I, Marx, have met God. I have found that He is the Parent of humankind. I have felt the greatness of God’s love. I clearly convey to you who God is. He is the Parent of humankind. Reverend Sun Myung Moon, who is on the Earth, brought this fact to light. The Divine Principle and Unification Thought express the original standards that open the way to salvation, so you must read them. I ask this of you seriously. I clearly say that I apologize for my past to God and True Parents and love them and am proud of them. Marx, April 18, 2002

2. Lenin (Vladimir Ilich Ulyanov; 1870-1924, The leader of the Russian Revolution, the October 1917 revolution, Chairman of The People’s Commissariat.): God certainly exists. He exists as the Parent of humankind. In spite of that, I put myself on the vanguard of Communist revolution with a sword in my hands, shouting out that there are no parents. I made their hearts ache.

I announce to Communists: God, Jehovah, certainly exists and He is the Parent of humankind. The Communist counties will perish without fail. The ideal of Communism will be realized by its being engrafted upon Unification Thought. I have an earnest request for you. There is only one way for Communist countries to live and that is to follow Reverend Moon’s guidance. Please study the Divine Principle in detail. Please receive the thought of Reverend Moon and study it deeply. If you do so, you will attend God more truly than the thinkers or politicians of the Free World. This is the only way to live truly. If you follow my words, it will release me from unimaginable suffering and agony. I beg this of you. Communist countries must re-arrange everything as soon as possible. I met God. The spirit doesn’t die, but lives. This is my last wish, given in blood from the world of Heaven. “God is alive. God is the Parent of humankind.” Lenin, April 19, 2002

3. Stalin (Joseph Vissarionovich Djugashvili Stalin, 1879-1953, Lenin’s successor, who communized Russia.): Friends in Communist countries, I am Stalin. You have had wrong thinking. As the way you are going is not the way you should go, you must turn to the right path as soon as possible. One’s life on the Earth determines the place one will live in the heavenly world. Our beliefs are wrong. The worst of it is that we deny and ignore God, who is the origin of the cosmos. The God we denied is the Parent of humankind. God is not a theological existence, but is our Parent.

Those at whom we laughed live well in spirit world. It is certain that they didn’t go to Hell. When we laughed at them, they and God loved us. We live in the bottom of Hell here. Do you understand what it means? People here don’t treat each other as human beings, but as material. If there were any means to rid myself of this pain, I would do it. The place one dwells in the spirit world cannot be decided by power, honor or gold. It is decided by the sincerity of your life on the Earth. First, know and believe God and attend Him. Second, completely clarify your way of life.

Please receive the will of Reverend Moon completely, open your minds and build churches for the worship of God and hold worship services. Reverend Moon reflects the image of God, even though he is a man, and he is struggling intensely to save Communist countries. His thought is messianic, especially for the Communist countries. You must receive his ideology of peace immediately. I, the dictator who denied God, cry out to all the Communist countries on the Earth. Please believe in God and seek for Him. Stalin, April 19, 2002 (And, uh, sorry about that whole Ukrainian starvation thing. My bad.)

4. Deng Xiao Ping (1902-1997, the Chairman of Chinese Communist Party.): Thanks be to God for forgiving the one who committed sin. Thank you Reverend Moon for working hard to save those in Hell and the Communist bloc.
Friends in the Communist Party! The word that followed me was one that made God’s heart bleed. I now know that I was a terrible sinner. Reverend Moon is the one who brought to light Unification Thought and the Divine Principle, and he is the father of humankind named as True Parent by God. Follow him and be guided by him. Communism has misled humankind. God exists as the Parent of humankind. We all became rebels against God. The spirits are destined to live here in the spirit world. There is no way for Communists to live, but by following Reverend Moon’s guidance. This is my earnest wish and appeal. Deng Xiao Ping, April 21, 2002 (Deng Xiao Ping? Deng Xiao Ping? You lined up all these people and you couldn't get Chairman Mao himself to attend, he sent a no-talent lackey like Deng in his place? I guess Rev. Moon doesn't have as much pull as he thinks he does)

A Letter From God

(Was this notarized? Call me skeptical, but ever since Moses came up with that ridiculous story about his dog eating the stone tablets that the 10 Commandments were written on, I'm a show me kinda guy on the God letter issue)

Dear Beloved True Parents,

I am the God of all people. I am the God of all people. I am the God of all people. (Like Kid Rock, God feels the need to incessantly tell you his name, lest ye forget)

My beloved son. My beloved son. My beloved son,

I, the God of all people (My name is Goooooooooooooooooooooooood, bawita ba da bang a dang diggy diggy), love True Parents! I love you greatly! I hold you dearly! (I heart my dog!)

How could I help but feel happiness and gratitude for you, who are my son? If there were a word better than “love,” I would like to borrow that verb, but I can't think of a better word. (God can't think of a better word? He invented all the world's languages at the Tower of Babel, and now he's at a loss for words? Omniscient, my ass) Although the True Parents reside in a deep place in my heart, I cannot adequately express my love for you in words.

As you, the True Parents, have now succeeded in everything and have raised everything to its true level, you are now the Savior, Messiah and King of Kings of all of humanity!!! (You the man. No, I mean it, you the fucking man) Because on December 25, 2001, the Founders and representatives of Christianity and the other religions adopted written resolutions in which they without exception resolved to participate in realizing the peaceful unification of the cosmos, while attending the True Parents, it is right and proper that the True Parents are exalted in the position of True Parents of all humankind. I, the God of all people, desire this and want to see it happen.

Despite the people of the world not yet fully understanding the position of True Parents, because the position should be fulfilled internally, I, the God of all people, invite the True Parents to the position of King of Kings.

Because the True Parents have, in my place, endured countless difficult paths, I now want to bestow upon you all of the gratitude, inspiration, excitement and joy that I have been feeling. I want you to inherit all that is mine.

My beloved True Parents! I have wanted to express my heart to you for a long time, but I have not had such an opportunity. However, now this daughter of mine has looked into my heart. This has allowed this time to come to pass, and I would like to express to you my gratitude.

True Parents! My beloved True Parents! I want to hold you in my bosom and not let you go! It is a waste for me to walk the floor with my two legs. I want to hold you all night and talk to you! (Okay, this is a bit uncomfortable, isn't it? God wants to spoon with the Rev. Moon. I feel so dirty now)

I, the God of all people, have faith. I believe in the True Parents. I know and remember all of the difficulties, pain and suffering that you have had to endure. I have seen it all. It was all my responsibility, yet you endured and raised a victorious standard. How can I ever forget you? I am grateful.

I am so happy because of you. Truly, I thank you for your hard work.

My beloved True Parents, victory to you! Victory to the Saviors of humanity! Victory to the King of Kings, True Parents!

I, the God of all people, sincerely convey this to my beloved True Parents.

Midnight, December 28, 2001

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Now here's the kicker. Despite making such monumentally stupid claims as this "spirit world seminar", this guy not only has followers, he as millions of them. One of them is none other than Jonathan Wells, one of the most prominent advocates of Intelligent Design Creationism and a senior fellow at the Discovery Institute. Now here's the real kicker. Rev. Moon gave a speech at the Dirkson Senate Office Building on March 23rd of this year, which culminated in a ceremony where he was crowned King of Kings with 81 congressmen and senators present, including prominent Republican Curt Weldon (read about his spokesperson's prevarication on the subject here). The investigative reporter John Gorenfeld has a transcript of the video and lots more information. Gorenfeld has done some incredible work exposing Moon's activities in the United States as well as his unbelievably bizarre ideas.

Rev. Moon has become enormously powerful in the American political system, especially on the right wing, but today he is building alliances on the left as well. He owns the Washington Times, a conservative newspaper, he owns United Press International, and his front groups fund a wide range of right wing foundations, some of whom have received federal tax money through Bush's faith-based initiatives program. He has even built strong ties to religious right and allegedly Christian leaders like Jerry Falwell, Tim LaHaye and Pat Robertson. And what does Rev. Moon have in mind for America? How about this little tidbit from a speech he gave at his palace in Korea:

There will be a purge on God's orders, and evil will be eliminated like shadows. Gays will be eliminated, the 3 Israels will unite. If not then they will be burned. We do not know what kind of world God will bring but this is what happens. It will be greater than the communist purge but at God's orders.
How's that for chilling?

Posted by Ed at 03:42 PM | Comments (8) | TrackBack

January 15, 2005

More Moon Deceit

I found this post on Blogesque through John Gorenfeld's site. It details how the Rev. Moon's speeches are often sanitized when translated into English. His translators take out some of the nuttier things he says in order to make them more palatable to non-Moonies. Specifically, he provides a more accurate translation of Moon's speech before the American Clergy Leadership Conference in October of last year and points out that nearly half the speech was redacted in the version that appeared on the Moon website. Among the crazy or creepy things left out:

I am the founder of [the] Washington Times. I can get all the secrets and details of your life if I want.

I hear many American women don’t want to have children. This may cause the extinction of [the] human race.

Were Adam and Eve chased out of the garden of Eden before they had children, or after they had children? It was after they had children. Under whose supervision they were married, God or Satan? God could not chase after them to marry them. It was Satan; must have been Satan.

That therefore we must acknowledge that Satan’s lineage - Satan’s blood - is moving around our body.

I met all the great saints in the spirit world: Socrates, Buddha, Mohammed, Jesus, Confucius. I received messages from the spirit world. They all want to marry Korean women so I did it, I helped them to do that. Was it a good thing? What I mean is - Jesus’ bride, Mohammed’s bride, Confucius’ bride - they are all alive on earth now because I married them with wonderful ladies.

The last one refers to an absolutely mind-boggling full page ad that Moon took out in newspapers around the world on July 4, 2002, an ad I had a good deal of fun with here. In that ad, Moon claims to have been at a meeting in the "spirit world" of most of the prominent men in world history. Jesus, Confucius, Buddha, Muhammed, they were all there. So were Marx, Lenin and Stalin, representing the Communist Boys and Girls Club, apparently. All of these people were in agreement, you see, that Moon was the coolest cat ever. Hell, it even included a letter from God himself. Makes you feel pretty lame for the references you put on your resume, doesn't it?

It's easy to dismiss Moon as the complete nutball that he obviously is. But he's a very smart and very dangerous nutball, and he has put himself in a position to exert perhaps more influence over the American political system than any other single person. Through an enormous array of front groups, he has spread around literally billions of dollars to buy influence in the American government and it has worked beautifully. The first President Bush has actually been paid millions to travel on Moon's behalf and talk him up in other nations. The current President Bush sent a letter praising the work of Moon's group that was read before Moon gave the speech that is translated above, and he has picked numerous Moon followers to work in his administration. Under the "faith based initiatives" program, the Bush administration has handed out hundreds of thousands of dollars to Moon groups and followers to promote their absolutely bizarre notions about sex education. In addition, Moon has over the last few years also began buying influence in the civil rights community, including prominent leaders like Walter Fauntroy.

I am not being the least bit alarmist when I say that Rev. Moon is perhaps the most dangerous man in the US. He may well be more of a threat to our way of life than even Osama Bin Laden and his followers. The Islamic radicals can set off bombs and kill people, but Moon, whose views can accurately be described as theofascist, has his tentacles on our system from within. For more, visit my archive of articles on Moon and John Gorenfeld's site.

Posted by Ed at 11:35 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

October 24, 2004

Rev. Moon and North Korea

At a time when we are dealing with a growing threat from North Korea, it's probably a good idea to take another look at the relationship between Reverend Moon and the maniacal dictator Kim Jung Il. The investigative reporter Robert Parry has long been following Moon's activities and in October of 2000 he published this report based on the findings of a Defense Intelligence Agency investigation. He reports:

Yet, in the 1990s when North Korea was scrambling for the resources to develop missiles and other advanced weaponry, Moon was among a small group of outside businessmen quietly investing in North Korea.

Moon’s activities attracted the attention of the Defense Intelligence Agency, which is responsible for monitoring potential military threats to the United States.

Though historically an ardent anticommunist, Moon negotiated a business deal in 1991 with Kim Il Sung, the longtime communist leader, the DIA documents said.

The deal called for construction of a hotel complex in Pyongyang as well as a new Holy Land at the site of Moon's birth in North Korea, one document said. The DIA said the deal sprang from a face-to-face meeting between Moon and Kim Il Sung in North Korea from Nov. 30 to Dec. 8, 1991.

“These talks took place secretly, without the knowledge of the South Korean government,” the DIA wrote on Feb. 2, 1994. “In the original deal with Kim [Il Sung], Moon paid several tens of million dollars as a down-payment into an overseas account,” the DIA said in a cable dated Aug. 14, 1994.

The DIA said Moon's organization also delivered money to Kim Il Sung's son and successor, Kim Jong Il.

“In 1993, the Unification Church sold a piece of property located in Pennsylvania,” the DIA reported on Sept. 9, 1994. “The profit on the sale, approximately $3 million was sent through a bank in China to the Hong Kong branch of the KS [South Korean] company ‘Samsung Group.’ The money was later presented to Kim Jung Il [Kim Jong Il] as a birthday present.”

After Kim Il Sung's death in 1994 and his succession by his son, Kim Jong Il, Moon dispatched his longtime aide, Bo Hi Pak, to ensure that the business deals were still on track with Kim Jong Il “and his coterie,” the DIA reported.

“If necessary, Moon authorized Pak to deposit a second payment for Kim Jong Il,” the DIA wrote.

And that's just the beginning. This was not just passing a few million dollars around to buy favors, this was an enormous investment to prop up the North Korean economy:

According to the DIA, Moon’s North Korean deal was ambitious and expensive.

“There was an agreement regarding economic cooperation for the reconstruction of KN's [North Korea's] economy which included establishment of a joint venture to develop tourism at Kimkangsan, KN [North Korea]; investment in the Tumangang River Development; and investment to construct the light industry base at Wonsan, KN. It is believed that during their meeting Mun [Moon] donated 450 billion yen to KN,” one DIA report said.

In late 1991, the Japanese yen traded at about 130 yen to the U.S. dollar, meaning Moon's investment would have been about $3.5 billion, if the DIA information is correct.

North Korea is, of course, not the only nation that Moon has infiltrated. Moon has also been funneling an enormous amount of money into America to buy political influence. He has paid millions of dollars to high-ranking government officials for speaking fees, including millions personally to former President George H.W. Bush, who has returned the favor by praising Moon vociferously at events for Moon all over the world. The current Bush administration has also hired several Moon operatives, particular in the various "faith-based initiatives" they've been pushing. His ties in particular to conservative foundations and interest groups, including immensely popular evangelical Christian leaders like Tim Lahaye and Jerry Falwell, should raise some serious red flags. This influence-buying undoubtedly explains why there has been no criminal investigation of Moon's business dealings with North Korea. As Parry notes, it is against US law for virtually anyone with anything to do with the United States to do business with that nation:

“Nobody in the United States was supposed to be providing funding to anybody in North Korea, period, under the Treasury (Department's) sanction regime,” said Jonathan Winer, former deputy assistant secretary of state handling international crime.

The U.S. embargo of North Korea dates back to the Korean War. With a few exceptions for humanitarian goods, the embargo barred trade and financial dealings between North Korea and “all U.S. citizens and permanent residents wherever they are located, … and all branches, subsidiaries and controlled affiliates of U.S. organizations throughout the world.”

Moon became a permanent resident of the United States in 1973, according to Justice Department records. Bo Hi Pak said Moon has kept his “green card” status. Though often in South Korea and South America, Moon maintains a residence near Tarrytown, north of New York City, and controls dozens of affiliated U.S. companies.

Not only has there been no criminal investigation of Moon, many of our Senators and Congressmen have praised Moon far and wide, and even held coronation ceremonies for him on Capitol Hill. They include Charles Rangel, Danny Davis, Curt Weldon and John Warner. It's time to hold our government accountable for their ties to this man.

Posted by Ed at 04:43 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

October 19, 2004

Anti-Kerry but Pro-Moon?

Much has been made of the decision by Sinclair broadcasting to preempt regular programming to air an anti-Kerry documentary in 25% of the nation just before the election in a couple weeks. Democrats are predictably up in arms about it and want the FCC to step in; Republicans are predictably just fine with it. If the tables were turned, and a network or TV chain was showing Farenheit 911 just before the election, the argument would naturally be reversed, with each side taking the opposite position and pretending to be objectively right regardless; such is the nature of partisan politics. Personally, I think Sinclair broadcasting has a right to air or not air whatever they choose, so I hadn't taken much interest in this issue at all. Until I found out who made this documentary to be aired - Carlton Sherwood.

Now, most people don't have a clue who Carlton Sherwood is. But anyone who has followed the Reverend Moon over the last 20 years will recognize the name. Sherwood was the author of a book called Inquisition: The Prosecution and Persecution of the Reverend Sun Myung Moon, a book which claimed that Moon was the target of a left-wing conspiracy. In the late 70s and early 80s, Congressional investigators built a case against Moon for widespread financial irregularities, and a Federal prosecutor ended up convicting Moon of tax evasion; Moon served a 13 month sentence in 1982. Sherwood, who was a reporter for the Moon-owned Washington Times, claimed in his book that Moon had done nothing wrong and that he was targeted because of racial and religious bias, claiming that Moon was a victim of "the worst kind of religious prejudice and racial bigotry this country has witnessed in over a century." I'll take nonsensical hyperbole for $1000, Alex.

The truth, it appears, is that Sherwood was Moon's hired gun and that Moon was behind this supposedly objective book right from the get go, along with several conservatives in government. As Robert Parry points out in this article, not only was it published by friends in high places, but Moon covered the cost of the publishing by promising to buy copies of it in bulk:

Inquisition was originally put out by a little-known publisher called Andromeda, which apparently operated out of the house of Roger Fontaine, a former member of Ronald Reagan’s National Security Council staff who later worked as a reporter for Moon’s Washington Times. In 1991, the book was republished by Regnery-Gateway, which was run by conservative operative Alfred Regnery, who worked in Ronald Reagan’s Justice Department.

Beyond the conservative allegiances of Sherwood’s backers, there also was evidence that Moon himself subsidized the book. A PBS Frontline documentary in 1992 reported that former Washington Times editor James Whelan said Sherwood told Regnery that Moon’s organization would buy 100,000 copies of Inquisition, which would assure Regnery a handsome profit. Frontline reported that Regnery denied Whelan’s statement, as has Sherwood.

However, a week after interviewing Regnery, Frontline said it obtained a copy of a letter that corroborated claims of a secret Moon role in the production of Sherwood’s book. The letter, addressed to Moon from his aide James Gavin, stated that Gavin had reviewed the “overall tone and factual contents” of Inquisition before publication and had suggested revisions.

“Mr. Sherwood has assured me that all this will be done when the manuscript is sent to the publisher,” Gavin wrote. “When all of our suggestions have been incorporated, the book will be complete and in my opinion will make a significant impact. … In addition to silencing our critics now, the book should be invaluable in persuading others of our legitimacy for many years to come.”

So not only did Moon have one of his own employees write the book, he got it published by promising to buy 100,000 copies of it, thus ensuring profitability, and then hired the publisher to work for him as well. Plus, his aides got to edit the book before it was published. This is the furthest thing from journalism, this is simply public relations. But Sherwood was not alone. To Moon's defense came several prominent conservatives, including Terry Dolan of the National Conservative Political Action Committee and Grover Nordquist.

Moon isn't stupid. He pays millions of dollars in speaking fees to prominent conservatives, including even former president Bush; he gives out literally hundreds of millions of dollars to various conservative groups; he bails out prominent but financially troubled leaders like Jerry Falwell and Richard Vigurie; he spends millions on their favorite projects, like helping fund the Contras in Nicaragua during the 80s; he buys a newspaper that pushes conservative views and publishes hagiographic pieces on those same leaders. And lo and behold, they come to his defense whenever the public gets wind of his criminal behavior. What a surprise.

Does this mean that whatever is in the documentary that he made about Kerry is false? Of course not. I haven't seen it and probably never will, so I don't have any idea what is in it or whether it's true. I'm far more interested in what Sherwood had to say about Moon than what he has to say about Kerry. I think the Moon story is the one that needs to be given more attention. We have a fascist theocrat with ties to North Korea spending hundreds of millions of dollars to buy influence in our political system, and that influence is getting him not only government contracts but virtual immunity due to his high connections. And the very people who should be most opposed to him - the Christian right - is climbing into bed with him in a hundred different ways. We can't afford to let this story slip below the radar. And as always, we have to give enormous credit to John Gorenfeld for keeping it in the spotlight.

Posted by Ed at 09:34 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

October 18, 2004

More on the Falwell-Moon Connection

I've written before about the connection between Jerry Falwell and Reverend Moon, particularly that Moon gave $3.5 million to Falwell to bail out Liberty University from impending bankruptcy in 1995. Now comes an article by Robert Parry that shows that the connection goes even deeper than I knew. Contrary to the claims of some of Falwell's defenders, who have claimed that Falwell didn't know the money came from Moon because he had given it to foundation controlled by Dan Reber and Jimmy Thomas rather than to Falwell directly, Parry shows evidence that Falwell had actively solicited the money from Moon:

The full public record strongly suggests that Falwell solicited Moon's help in bailing out Liberty University. In a lawsuit on file in the Circuit Court of Bedford County -- a community in southwestern Virginia -- two of Reber's former business associates alleged that Reber and Falwell flew to South Korea on Jan. 9, 1994, on a seven-day "secret trip" to meet "with representatives of the Unification Church."

The court document states that Reber and Falwell were accompanied to South Korea by Ronald S. Godwin, who had been executive director of Falwell's Moral Majority before signing on as vice president of Moon's Washington Times.

According to Bedford County court records, Reber, Falwell and Godwin also had discussions at Liberty University in 1993 with Dong Moon Joo, one of Moon's right-hand men and president of The Washington Times.

Reber settled the suit in question quickly, so these allegations didn't show up in court. Parry also points to the vast amounts of money that Moon has been spreading around, particularly among social conservatives, who share his desire to impose a narrow moral code on us all:

Still, despite his controversial remarks, Moon continues to buy friends on the American right -- as well as among African-American religious figures -- by spreading around vast sums of money. The totals are estimated in the billions of dollars, with much of it targeted on political infrastructure: direct-mail operations, video services for campaign ads, professional operatives and right-wing media outlets.

Through The Washington Times and its affiliated publications -- Insight magazine and The World & I -- Moon has not only showcased conservative opinions, but he has created seemingly legitimate conduits to funnel money to individuals and companies he seeks to influence. In the early 1980s, for instance, The Washington Times hired the New Right's direct-mail whiz Richard Viguerie to conduct a pricy direct-mail subscription drive. The business boosted Viguerie's profit margin.

Another element of Moon's strategy is to approach a conservative leader when he's financially down. Moon quietly infuses money and gains the leader's gratitude. Again, Viguerie is an example of that tactic. When he fell on hard times in the late 1980s, Moon directed more business his way and had a corporation run by Moon's lieutenant, Bo Hi Pak, buy one of Viguerie's properties for $10 million.

He also points to major Moon donations to now-prominent conservative spokesmen like Grover Nordquist. Go read the whole thing.

Posted by Ed at 02:55 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

October 05, 2004

Moonies on the Federal Payroll

We all know that President Bush is passionate about "protecting the sanctity of marriage", especially from people who want to get married. One of the programs he has proposed to do so is the Healthy Marriage Initiative. As the Heritage Foundation described it:

The President's Healthy Marriage Initiative has been included in the two major TANF reauthorization bills. One of these is the Personal Responsibility, Work, and Family Promotion Act of 2003 (H.R. 4) that was passed by the U.S. House of Representatives in May 2002 and again in February 2003. The Healthy Marriage Initiative has also been included in the Personal Responsibility and Individual Development for Everyone (PRIDE) bill introduced by Senator Charles Grassley (R-IA) in the U.S. Senate.

The proposal would create two separate funds to promote marriage. In the first, $100 million per year would be provided in grants to state governments for programs to promote healthy marriage. Participation in this funding program would be voluntary and competitive. States would neither be required to participate nor guaranteed funds: Instead, they would compete for funding by submitting program proposals to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The states with the best proposals would be selected to receive funds. States receiving funding would be required to match federal grants with state funds. In the second fund, another $100 million per year would be allocated in competitive grants to states, local governments, and non-government organizations.

So how is this money being spent? To hire followers of the Reverend Moon to teach people about healthy marriages:

President Bush has some new troops in his crusade to promote "healthy marriage" and teen celibacy with federal funds -- followers of the Rev. Sun Myung Moon, the controversial Korean evangelist and self-proclaimed new world messiah.

At least four longtime operatives of Moon's Unification Church are on the federal payroll or getting government grants in the administration's Healthy Marriage Initiative and other "faith-based" programs...

The 85-year-old Korean is perhaps best known for presiding over mass marriage ceremonies for devotees whose unions are arranged by Moon or other church leaders. After marriage, Unification Church couples are given detailed instructions for their honeymoon, right down to the sexual positions they are supposed to assume during their first three conjugal couplings.

According to Unification Church teachings, the children born from these marriages are "blessed children,'' who, unlike the rest of humanity, are born without original sin.

At the Oakland seminar, Josephine Hauer, a graduate of the Rev. Moon's Unification Theological Seminary in New York and a newly hired "marriage specialist" with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, worked the crowd of ministers and church workers packed into a stuffy room...

Before her new federal job, Hauer was the director of marriage education at the University of Bridgeport in Bridgeport, Conn. That school was taken over in 1992 by the Professors World Peace Academy, a Moon-affiliated group, and its current president, Neil Salonen, is a former president of the Unification Church in America.

Now mind you, most people would probably view the idea of hiring people who believe in mass marriages arranged by a fascist cult leader who claims that all the world's dead religious leaders endorsed him as the messiah in a ceremony in the "spirit world" to teach us about healthy marriage as being akin to hiring the criminally insane to teach in a law school. But what the hell, as long as we're going for "faith-based initiatives", it becomes hard to distinguish between competing faiths. Someone needs to tell them that Al Qaeda is a faith-based initiative too.

Posted by Ed at 06:25 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

August 11, 2004

More Worldnutdaily Hypocrisy About Rev. Moon

This morning's Worldnutdaily includes a prominent front page headline, Kerry Silent on Beijing Photo. The headline links to an article in Insight Magazine about John Kerry taking a privately sponsored trip to promote trade in China in the late 1990s. Hardly unusual, of course, and the president's own brother Neil has been taking such trips (and getting hookers sent to his room while doing it). But the implication is, of course, "Kerry in bed with godless commies". But here's what is so funny about this. Remember that Joseph Farah, the owner of Worldnutdaily, just a few weeks ago was telling us how, more than a decade ago, he resolved not to do anything that might lend credibility to Reverend Moon:

Imagine my shock, as I read along in the translation to learn that Moon was saying that night that indeed he was the messiah. I was embarrassed to find myself sitting behind this man, perhaps, even, in some small way, lending credibility to his preposterous claims.

It was a lesson to me at the time on just how easy it is to be compromised.

A lesson he obviously did not learn well, because he is still sharing content with Insight, a magazine owned entirely by Reverend Moon's Unification Church. And he's still pushing another Moon-owned publication as the "perfect weekly print companion" to the Worldnetdaily. But hey, as long as we're doing guilt by association with communists, why not take a look at this article, which exposes how Reverend Moon's Toen Trading Company has been selling Russian-made submarines and missile technology to North Korea.

But hey, why should Farah be worried about a little ol' thing like lending credibility to an insane billionaire cult leader who thinks he's the messiah and has been selling lethal weapons to the equally insane leader of North Korea, who may as a result be able to deliver nuclear weapons to American soil? That would stop him from tarring a candidate he doesn't like, and we can't have that, can we?

Posted by Ed at 11:15 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

July 13, 2004

WorldNetDaily Hypocrisy on Rev. Moon

Joseph Farah, owner of the WorldNetDaily, has a commentary today about the Reverend Moon that is filled with hypocritical statements. He begins by telling of his experience over a decade ago, being invited to a Moon event in South Korea and sitting on the stage behind Moon as he declared himself the Messiah. Farah writes:

Imagine my shock, as I read along in the translation to learn that Moon was saying that night that indeed he was the messiah. I was embarrassed to find myself sitting behind this man, perhaps, even, in some small way, lending credibility to his preposterous claims.

It was a lesson to me at the time on just how easy it is to be compromised.

And just how well did he learn that lesson? Not very well, it turns out. His actions since that event of a decade ago certainly don't support the claim that he was in any way concerned about lending credibility to Moon's activities "even in some small way". Farah's column appears in the Washington Times Weekly Edition, owned by Moon, every week, and the WND sells subscriptions to it (they may have just stopped doing so, the link is down but says nothing about it). The link on "shopnetdaily" that sold subscriptions included this glowing plug from Farah:
"If you want the perfect weekly print complement to WorldNetDaily, I strongly recommend the Washington Times Weekly, edited by my friend Robert Morton."
Boy Joe, it sure sounds like you were looking out for anything that might "lend credibility to Moon's activities" in some small way. What better way to show such concern than to pimp his publications on your website and give them a feverish plug as something your readers should subscribe to, insuring that he makes more money?

But it doesn't stop there. Last year, WorldNetDaily began sharing content with Insight, another Moon-owned publication, and they also began selling subscriptions to that magazine through Shopnetdaily (and again, the link has suddenly disappeared for it). Farah himself even wrote an e-mail to all WND subscribers urging them to subscribe to Insight, calling Moon's Insight editor "an independent thinker who digs deep and hard for the facts and draws conclusions based on what he finds rather than on some ideological assumption." And in a striking instance of "you scratch my back, I scratch yours", Moon returned the favor by featuring an interview with Farah in Insight to promote his new book. That interview also calls attention to the fact that Farah was awarded "The Washington Times Foundation National Service Award" in 1996 - also well after the event that Farah alleges made him "embarrassed" to be part of anything that might be "even, in some small way, lending credibility to his preposterous claims."

So basically, we're left with a case of actions vs words. Which is more plausible, that Farah was genuinely embarrassed and mindful of doing anything that might lend credibility to Moon's actions over a decade ago, yet continued to do all the things I listed above, or....that he has spent the last decade profiting from his business dealings with these businesses he knew were owned by Moon (he refers to the Washington Times as "Moon's heavily subsidized daily newspaper") and is trying to strike an implausible pose as the noble opposer of Moon's madness now that the shit has hit the fan? The answer seems obvious to me.

And yes, Farah is posing as the man who finally broke the story about Moon's coronation. He says:

I was reminded of this experience recently when my daily, nationally syndicated talk-radio show broke the news of Moon's "crowning" achievement at the Dirksen Senate Office Building in March. Stories followed in Salon, the Washington Post and elsewhere.
Uh, no. You did not "break the news". John Gorenfeld broke the news and dozens and dozens of bloggers followed suit to bring the issue to the attention of the media. Farah wasn't even the first radio host to break the story, which appeared on Garafalo and Seder's show on Air America radio on May 21st, over 3 weeks before Gorenfeld appeared on Farah's show.

The bottom line is this: Farah is portraying himself as the noble savior, bravely battling the evil Reverend Moon since he found out over a decade ago that Moon falsely claimed to be the messiah and decided that it was important not to do anything that might lend credibility to Moon's insanity. The truth is that Farah is not the one who broke the story, and that in the decade since he claims he was "embarrassed" and "learned his lesson" about dealing with Moon, he has been profiting from association with Moon's publications and even accepted an award from one of them that he knew was owned by Moon. If that isn't rank hypocrisy, I don't know what would be.

Posted by Ed at 01:19 PM | Comments (10) | TrackBack

July 03, 2004

Reverend Moon's Lunatic Ravings, Take Two

These are taken from a speech that Moon gave at a graduation for his seminary students in the US in 1993:

My enemies are America and Christianity. How am I going to win over those enemies. God's way is to get hit and win. Everybody opposed Father but I do not hate those who opposed me. It is natural for the world to go against me.

Just think of it, I came to take over and discard the old evil ways. People do not like that. But no matter how many people oppose Rev. Moon God is on His side. Father is in the USA not for revenge but to serve.

Father loved the USA, Russia and even North Korea. Father has truly loved His enemies to the ultimate degree. Satan has to bow down to Father because he can no longer complain about not being loved. Father truly is the model of how to love the enemy.

Father established a lot of projects like the ACC and USA (United to Save America) to save this nation. You Americans must love and sacrifice more for this nation than Father did. But many came only to the movement to exploit it. Now Father is stepping back to let Americans take over.

Bush received much from Father but Bush did not respond. Look at where he is now, he is done. Republicans' only hope is to unite with Father. Father spent much of His resources here in America, for whom? There are only a few white people in the world but 3.2 billion of the yellow race.

Father invested much money here in the USA and the seminary. This is a true example of loving the enemy. Now that Christianity has failed we have established a "New Christianity" under the Unification Church. We must pull the Christians out of their churches and bring them to the New Christianity.

Europe, Russia, China and Korea are all under Father. If the USA does not respond Father will go to those countries.

Posted by Ed at 06:41 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

July 01, 2004

Great Stallings Quote

From the press conference yesterday, reported by Townhall:

"It was the spirit world that said he was the Messiah," said Archbishop George A. Stallings, Jr., pastor of an independent African-American Catholic congregation. Moon, founder of the Unification Church, was merely repeating the message, said Stallings.
Conveniently, the "spirit world" was unavailable for comment.

Posted by Ed at 02:53 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

Stallings and the Moonies Spin the Coronation Story

The Moonies held a press conference yesterday to clear up what they claim are misconceptions and falsehoods fostered by us evil bloggers about the March 23rd Moon coronation ceremony at the Dirkson senate office building. The press conference featured Michael Jenkins, George Stallings and other frauds and con men from the Unification Church. They ended up making themselves sound even worse. We've already shown the two contradictory explanations they've given, and their own admission of how they've given two contradictory views of it:

"The 'outside' view of the Capitol Hill event was that Father received a crown, an award for his years of dedication and leadership in reconciliation and peace-making. The 'inside' view of the event was that America surrendered to True Parents in the king's position."
But not satisfied with that set of lies, they added another to it during yesterday's press conference. Rob Boston of Americans United was there for the press conference and reports:
Archbishop George Augustus Stallings, founder of a breakaway Catholic church and a frequent Moon ally, spoke at the press conference and took questions. But Stallings dodged the most important question and refused to say which member of the Senate arranged for Moon's group to use the room in the Dirksen Senate Office Building. (Under Senate rules, such requests for Senate space must be submitted by a member of that body.)

Asked directly to name the senator who had put in the room request, Stallings said, "We do not know." Asked how they could not know, Stallings said, "We don't. Read my lips."

But a moment later, Schanker stepped up to the microphone to clarify matters. The Moon group does know who requested the room but will not say, Schanker said. It is up to the Senate Rules Committee, he said, to make that information public.

You have to love the fact that Stallings got all haughty and arrogant with his "read my lips" comment, only to find out he was lying mere seconds later by the admission of his fellow Moon apologist, Mr. Schanker. Hilarious. And the most astonishing thing about it is that these lying clowns will be believed by their followers. There is no claim, no matter how obviously dishonest, that can't be rationalized by the true believers.

Posted by Ed at 10:40 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

June 30, 2004

Ex-Moonies

One of the best sources of information about Rev. Moon and the Unification Church is ex-Moonies - former members of the cult who have escaped and are brave enough to speak out about their experiences. One of those folks, K. Gordon Neufeld, has posted a couple of comments here and I urge all of you to visit his webpage and read his book.

Another excellent resource is Craig Maxim's webpage. Craig was a favored member of Moon's cult and spent a good deal of time with Moon himself at his mansions around the world. He puts the lie to George Stallings' claim on the radio yesterday that Moon had taken a vow of poverty. The man is a multi-billionaire with mansions all over the world, for crying out loud.

Posted by Ed at 11:21 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

June 29, 2004

George Stallings and Rev. Moon

John Gorenfeld was on the radio this morning in Detroit (click here to listen to the show), along with the Rev. George Stallings. For those of you not familiar with Rev. George Stallings, he is a maverick former Catholic priest who quit the priesthood and established his own quasi-Catholic church called Imani Temple. He did so after he was accused of molesting a former altar boy in 1989 and his bishop requested that he go into treatment, after which he split away from the church and started his own denomination. It was a strange mix of Afrocentric politics and Catholicism, which has now morphed into something Moonie-centric. Most recently, he has been pushing Moon's campaign to remove crosses from Christian churches, angering many Christian leaders.

The one thing that jumps out at you while you listen to Stallings speak on the radio about Moon is that, to be blunt, the man is an absolute fraud. He has the glib huckster's speech patterns down pat, but his arguments are utter nonsense. He claims that Moon "loves gays". Mind you, Moon calls gays "dung eating dogs" and says that they will all be destroyed when he rules the world at God's request. But he loves them. And if you buy that, then you are either astonishingly stupid, or insane. He compares Moon to Jesus himself, and claims that all of the vile things that Moon has said in his speeches are just translation problems. I submit to you that anyone who could say that with a straight face is a con man, plain and simple.

Posted by Ed at 07:46 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

June 28, 2004

Contradictory Explanations from the Moonies

The Moonies have issued a press release hammering us evil bloggers for our coverage of the Moon coronation story. They seem to be a bit tweaked that so many of us have dared to call Moon the nutjob that he is. Get used to it, kids. It's only gonna get worse. Here's the funny thing about the new press release - it completely contradicts the statement they made on March 30th about the event. The new version is that it was just a nice man being honored for his tireless efforts on behalf of world peace:

Among the nearly 100 �Crown of Peace� awards presented to civic, religious and diplomatic leaders recognizing their significant contributions to peacemaking, Rev. and Mrs. Moon were honored for their lifetime work with an international �Crown of Peace� recognition. This was presented in the context of a �Ceremony of Reconciliation� among Jewish, Christian and Muslim leaders and included the presentation of ceremonial robes and crowns, with the affectionate honor �king and queen of peace.� In heartfelt remarks following the presentation, Rev. Moon passionately described the global significance of his mission, and challenged all present to take up the work for peace and reconciliation with equal sincerity and commitment.
And here's the old version:
He, (nor True Father) does not need a crown to "become" a king, they already are. Rather, what is important is in the offering, that America offered the crown. This is what has meaning...So in effect, the crowning means America is saying to Father "Please become my king."...The "outside" view of the Capitol Hill event was that Father received a crown, an award for his years of dedication and leadership in reconciliation and peacemaking. The "inside" view of the event was that America surrendered to True Parents in the king's position.
Gosh, how surprising that the Moonies would present two entirely contradictory versions of this event. The Vegas odds on that were, well, about 1:1. And damn us nasty old bloggers all to hell for not letting them get away with it:
In contrast to the efforts and integrity of much of the mainstream media, the momentum for this �story� was provided by independent �journalists� and �blog� writers who have made no effort to contact the event organizers for a balanced presentation of both sides of the story.
But you see, the great thing about the Moonies is that you don't have to worry about researching to get "both sides of the story" because you can rest assured that they will give you both sides themselves, one out of each mouth depending on who they're talking to, as the quotes above demonstrate perfectly. There are a couple of interesting things said in the press release that, if true, put the lie to the claims of so many Congressman that they didn't know that this was a Moonie event. For instance, the press release says:
A number of media reports, including the Washington Post and New York Times, have correctly reported that an invitation letter sent initially to every Congressional office clearly identified Rev. and Mrs. Moon as the founders of the IIFWP, and stated that they would participate and be honored at this event.
If this is true, then the Congressmen are simply lying when they claim that they didn't know this was a Moon-sponsored event. Just like the Moonies themselves are lying about the meaning of the event in at least one of their contradictory stories about it.

The press release contains lots of other silliness as well. He compares himself to Martin Luther King:

Some critics of Rev. Moon�s work wish to exaggerate and malign these leaders� association with the event. These attacks call to mind those leveled at Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., who was initially feared, maligned and labeled. Dr. King�s detractors, some out of ignorance, and others driven by pure racial prejudice, feared his message of integration and its consequences. He was misrepresented in the media, indicted for tax fraud, and arrested time and again. And many who associated themselves with his work were attacked for refusing to separate from him.
Yeah, poor Reverend Moon, persecuted so unfairly just like Martin Luther King. King preached non-violent integration of society and equal rights for all people; Moon declares himself the Messiah and proclaims that one day he will rule a one-world government that will be purged of all homosexuals and other "deviants" and "dung-eating dogs". Sometimes you can hardly tell them apart. He also compares himself to the Pope and the Dalai Llama. Oh, and I especially like this little bit of rationalization:
Some media, echoing the bloggers� themes, have referred to Rev. Moon�s religion as �bizarre.� In fact, virtually every established religion has sacraments and ceremonies that seem �bizarre� when viewed by non-believers, as well as expectations and beliefs based upon faith alone. Early Christians were persecuted as cannibals for the sacrament of communion, which symbolizes taking the flesh and blood of Christ. From God�s presence in burning bushes or the resurrection of the dead to the ascension of sanctified prophets, it is not easy to understand the meaning of these events. To understand the bold assertions made by the Rev. Moon, they must be considered in a religious context.
Translation: lots of other people believe ridiculous nonsense too. Okay, I'll grant them that. The obvious answer is "So what? How does that make your utter horseshit any more believable?"

This story gets more fun to cover as it goes along. Stay tuned.

Posted by Ed at 11:25 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

June 15, 2004

The Lunatic Reverend Moon

On July 4, 2002, the Unification Church (a.k.a. the Moonies) took out a full page ad in newspapers all around the world that just has to be seen to be believed. I'm going to reprint parts of that ad here, skipping all of the statements by all of the "underlings" of the great religions, along with my own comments interspersed in italics. And at the end, I'll tell you why this is important.

------------------------------------

“A Cloud of Witnesses: The Saints’ Testimonies to the True Parents”

Preface: What follows is a complex document. It was produced at a seminar in spirit world for leaders of the five great religions.(A seminar in the spirit world? I'm just picturing Jesus and Buddha and Confucius milling around in the hallway outside a conference room at the Valhalla Holiday Inn, eating stale danishes and waiting for Rev. Moon to take the makeshift stage and sell motivational videos) It includes testimonies to the True Parents, Reverend and Mrs. Sun Myung Moon, a letter from God, messages from four communist leaders, and a resolution written and adopted by the representatives of the five great religions. (Holy shit! Even Michael Eisner couldn't put together a party list like that. But where is Paris Hilton? She would never miss a party with that many A-listers. And I can't believe Shirley MacLaine would miss this event!)

To take this all in, we advise you to relax and open your mind for a while.(Of course. It goes without saying that if you don't buy this load of bullshit, it can only be because you just don't have an open mind) If you believe in the existence of a higher dimension of reality, of God, of an invisible realm, this will call you to reflect on the implications of that belief. We believe in the spirit world and in the continuation of individual identity from this world to that one. All the passed-away saints are residing in spirit world. Since Jesus called him in 1935, the Reverend Sun Myung Moon has carried on a ministry to spirit world in parallel with his ministry on Earth. He has sought to gather the founders and saints of all faiths around one table of unity. In recent times, he has ministered to spirits in hell and opened the gates of their liberation. This collection of testimonies is one fruit of that ministry.

The Family Federation for World Peace and Unification is publishing this document throughout America and in 40 countries worldwide. This proclamation is our responsibility to let all humankind know the works of God in our age.

This message has significant practical as well as spiritual import. It is a unifying message, addressing believers of all faiths as one global family. As such it is intended to draw all men and women to the one Holy God and help bring world peace. Peace will not arrive through politics or economic development alone, as crucial as these things are. The foundation for peace is common faith in God and practice of true parental, conjugal and familial love. Hence the value of True Parents, and the messianic power of their words and works.

A committee or coalition cannot instigate true love; the responsibility for this devolves to substantial human exemplars. The testimonies that follow bear witness that the Reverend and Mrs. Sun Myung Moon are those exemplars and have opened the gates for all people to inherit, through them, God’s completed salvation, prophesied in all scriptures.

The testimonies appeal to Father Moon’s teachings and works as the evidence of their veracity. We encourage the reader to move beyond these messages and duly pursue study of his teachings and works. Those of us who have followed Father Moon’s leadership confirm the testimonies of the saints. We believe in God’s work for world peace, to bring His kingdom upon the Earth and in Heaven. With that love and hope in our hearts, we recommend these messages to you.

The Editors
Family Federation for World Peace, International

Ceremony in spirit world for the adoption and proclamation of a written resolution by the representatives of the five great religions.

The written resolution of the representatives of the five great religions


1. Christianity: Jesus and 12 other representatives
2. Confucianism: Confucius and 12 other representatives (including 3 additional people)(Leave it to the Chinese to have more people than any other group)
3. Buddhism: Buddha and 12 other representatives
4. Islam: Muhammad and 12 other representatives
5. Hinduism: Three people among the 12 representatives

(What? Where are the Jews? You couldn't get Moses or David to drop in and lend a hand? For crying out loud, you could have at least gotten Alan King. He'll play any room. This is a major oversight. Leaving the Jews off the major religions list is like leaving Madonna out of a book called Great Skanks in History.)

This report was sent by Dr. Sang Hun Lee and received by reporter Mrs. Young Soon Kim, between December 19 and December 27, 2001, at the Asan Campus of Sun Moon University.

Ceremony in spirit world for the adoption and proclamation of a written resolution by representatives of the five great religions

Order of the Ceremony:

Date and time: Noon, December 25, 2001 (I love the fact that they give specific dates and times for this entirely fictional event, as though that lends credibility to the story)

Master of Ceremonies: Dr. Sang Hun Lee

1. Proclamation of the opening of the ceremony: We will now conduct the ceremony for the adoption and proclamation of a written resolution by the representatives of the five great religions.
2. Recitation of the Family Pledge
3. Proclamation of the written resolution (Jesus)
4. Representative prayer (Jesus)
5. Three cheers of victory, led by Mohammed - Victory for God, Victory for True Parents, Victory for the five great religions (And Go Yankees!)

The ceremony concluded with applause.(Except Jesus, because his hands whistle when he tries to clap)

Seating Arrangement:

1. The front seats were filled by the leading representatives of the five great religions.
2. Behind the leading representatives, the 12 other representatives of each religion sat.
3. In the back of the arena, 120 representatives from each religion sat.

(One has to wonder what the meal was. The Muslims won't eat pork or shellfish, the Hindus won't touch beef, and some of the Christians can't eat meat on Fridays. Probably just fried manna.)

Jesus' Prayer:

We of the five great religions, attending God above us and True Parents horizontally, pledge and proclaim that we will go the way of absolute obedience, in order to correct all of the wrongs committed throughout history.

I report this in the name of Jesus, of a central blessed family. Amen, Amen, Amen.(Is there something slightly egomaniacal about saying a prayer in your own name? What's the etiquette here?)

The written resolution by representatives of the five great religions

1. We resolve and proclaim that God is the Parent of all humankind.
2. We resolve and proclaim that Reverend Sun Myung Moon is the Savior, Messiah, Second Coming and True Parent of all humanity.
3. We resolve and proclaim that the Unification Principle is a message of peace for the salvation of humanity and the gospel for the Completed Testament Age.
4. We resolve and proclaim that we will accomplish the peaceful unification of the cosmos through “living for others” while transcending religion, nationality and race, centering on true love. (Except for gays, of course - they don't get to play our reindeer games)
5. The representatives of the five great religions resolve and proclaim that we will harmonize with one another, unite and move forward, in order to bring about the nation of God and world peace, while attending True Parents.

This has been resolved and proclaimed by Jesus, the leading representative of the group of representatives of the five great religions, Christianity, Confucianism, Buddhism, Islam and Hinduism, at noon on December 25, 2001.

1. Christianity

Jesus: Reverend Sun Myung Moon! Thou art the Second Coming who inaugurated the Completed Testament Age! The 120 people, who have brought light to the history of Christianity, pledge to take part in all that the True Parents do, and resolve to strive toward the ideal, the original garden where there is no original sin, through the guidance, the words of the Completed Testament, and the Unification Principle, of the Savior and Messiah, the Reverend Sun Myung Moon. (2001.12.19)

(Skipping the similar testaments by the 12 Christian leaders)

2. Confucianism

Confucius: The 120 figures representing Confucianism pledge to accept the Unification Principle as the truth and to believe and attend the Reverend Sun Myung Moon as the Savior and Messiah in the Completed Testament Age. (2001.12.19)(P.S. Man who have sex in strawberry patch have piece on earth)

(Skipping the similar statements by the 15 representatives of Confucianism)

3. Buddhism

Buddha: Reverend Sun Myung Moon! True Parents! The 120 people of Buddhism vow and pledge to advance toward a movement of peace that will guide humanity in a new direction. We pledge to attend God as the Parent of humankind and Reverend Sun Myung Moon as a True Parent, and to equip ourselves with the Unification Principle and Unification Thought. (2001.12.20)(The Zen koan of the Moonies - what is the sound of millions of morons falling for such nonsense?)

(Skipping the similar testaments from Buddhists - though the one from Richard Gere talking about how the Rev. Moon got him in touch with his gerbil's true Buddha nature was nothing short of inspiring)

4. Islam

Muhammad: Since I, Muhammad, encountered the Unification Principle and met the Reverend Sun Myung Moon, my worldview has changed. I am now confident in everything. Everything seems new to me now. I am filled with optimism and hope. (Ever since I ordered Tony Robbins' success tapes, my life is better. I bought half of the San Fernando valley with nothing but my good looks and Camel Cash because Tony told me I could) This is because I have come to know the fundamental will of God and that God is the Parent of humankind. I know now that this is the way I must go. The basic way of life is to live in attendance to our vertical and horizontal parents.

I cry out: Victory for God! Victory for Reverend Sun Myung Moon, the True Parent, Messiah and Savior! All Muslims follow the will of Muhammad. Allah, whom you have been following, was actually God, Jehovah. There is only one God for humankind and God is our Parent. I offer my pledge. I pledge to have faith in everything and follow the will of the Eternal God. (2001.12.26)

(Skipping the similar testaments from Muslim leaders - though the Ayatollah Khomeini's declaration of jihad against Disney was an especially nice touch)

5. Hinduism.

I'll just skip the three representatives of Hinduism.

6. Four Representative Communist Leaders. (It's a nice touch getting the atheists in on the act. Everyone loves a good after-deathbed conversion)

1. Karl Marx (1818-1883, The founder of Marxism; born in Trier, Germany.): I, Marx, affirm God’s existence and that He is the Parent of all humankind. I denied God and shouted loudly with confidence to the extent that people believed me more than God. Now I’d like to reveal my experience with God to the whole world. I felt that my theoretical paradigm was crumbling as I listened to the Godism lecture. At the same time my pride was damaged severely. When I listened to Godism, I thought it was a dream, but it was not. Then a beam of light came into my heart like a red-hot bullet.

I, Marx, have met God. I have found that He is the Parent of humankind. I have felt the greatness of God’s love. I clearly convey to you who God is. He is the Parent of humankind. Reverend Sun Myung Moon, who is on the Earth, brought this fact to light. The Divine Principle and Unification Thought express the original standards that open the way to salvation, so you must read them. I ask this of you seriously. I clearly say that I apologize for my past to God and True Parents and love them and am proud of them. Marx, April 18, 2002

2. Lenin (Vladimir Ilich Ulyanov; 1870-1924, The leader of the Russian Revolution, the October 1917 revolution, Chairman of The People’s Commissariat.): God certainly exists. He exists as the Parent of humankind. In spite of that, I put myself on the vanguard of Communist revolution with a sword in my hands, shouting out that there are no parents. I made their hearts ache.

I announce to Communists: God, Jehovah, certainly exists and He is the Parent of humankind. The Communist counties will perish without fail. The ideal of Communism will be realized by its being engrafted upon Unification Thought. I have an earnest request for you. There is only one way for Communist countries to live and that is to follow Reverend Moon’s guidance. Please study the Divine Principle in detail. Please receive the thought of Reverend Moon and study it deeply. If you do so, you will attend God more truly than the thinkers or politicians of the Free World. This is the only way to live truly. If you follow my words, it will release me from unimaginable suffering and agony. I beg this of you. Communist countries must re-arrange everything as soon as possible. I met God. The spirit doesn’t die, but lives. This is my last wish, given in blood from the world of Heaven. “God is alive. God is the Parent of humankind.” Lenin, April 19, 2002

3. Stalin (Joseph Vissarionovich Djugashvili Stalin, 1879-1953, Lenin’s successor, who communized Russia.): Friends in Communist countries, I am Stalin. You have had wrong thinking. As the way you are going is not the way you should go, you must turn to the right path as soon as possible. One’s life on the Earth determines the place one will live in the heavenly world. Our beliefs are wrong. The worst of it is that we deny and ignore God, who is the origin of the cosmos. The God we denied is the Parent of humankind. God is not a theological existence, but is our Parent.

Those at whom we laughed live well in spirit world. It is certain that they didn’t go to Hell. When we laughed at them, they and God loved us. We live in the bottom of Hell here. Do you understand what it means? People here don’t treat each other as human beings, but as material. If there were any means to rid myself of this pain, I would do it. The place one dwells in the spirit world cannot be decided by power, honor or gold. It is decided by the sincerity of your life on the Earth. First, know and believe God and attend Him. Second, completely clarify your way of life.

Please receive the will of Reverend Moon completely, open your minds and build churches for the worship of God and hold worship services. Reverend Moon reflects the image of God, even though he is a man, and he is struggling intensely to save Communist countries. His thought is messianic, especially for the Communist countries. You must receive his ideology of peace immediately. I, the dictator who denied God, cry out to all the Communist countries on the Earth. Please believe in God and seek for Him. Stalin, April 19, 2002 (And, uh, sorry about that whole Ukrainian starvation thing. My bad.)

4. Deng Xiao Ping (1902-1997, the Chairman of Chinese Communist Party.): Thanks be to God for forgiving the one who committed sin. Thank you Reverend Moon for working hard to save those in Hell and the Communist bloc.
Friends in the Communist Party! The word that followed me was one that made God’s heart bleed. I now know that I was a terrible sinner. Reverend Moon is the one who brought to light Unification Thought and the Divine Principle, and he is the father of humankind named as True Parent by God. Follow him and be guided by him. Communism has misled humankind. God exists as the Parent of humankind. We all became rebels against God. The spirits are destined to live here in the spirit world. There is no way for Communists to live, but by following Reverend Moon’s guidance. This is my earnest wish and appeal. Deng Xiao Ping, April 21, 2002 (Deng Xiao Ping? Deng Xiao Ping? You lined up all these people and you couldn't get Chairman Mao himself to attend, he sent a no-talent lackey like Deng in his place? I guess Rev. Moon doesn't have as much pull as he thinks he does)

A Letter From God

(Was this notarized? Call me skeptical, but ever since Moses came up with that ridiculous story about his dog eating the stone tablets that the 10 Commandments were written on, I'm a show me kinda guy on the God letter issue)

Dear Beloved True Parents,

I am the God of all people. I am the God of all people. I am the God of all people. (Like Kid Rock, God feels the need to incessantly tell you his name, lest ye forget)

My beloved son. My beloved son. My beloved son,

I, the God of all people (My name is Goooooooooooooooooooooooood, bawita ba da bang a dang diggy diggy), love True Parents! I love you greatly! I hold you dearly! (I heart my dog!)

How could I help but feel happiness and gratitude for you, who are my son? If there were a word better than “love,” I would like to borrow that verb, but I can't think of a better word. (God can't think of a better word? He invented all the world's languages at the Tower of Babel, and now he's at a loss for words? Omniscient, my ass) Although the True Parents reside in a deep place in my heart, I cannot adequately express my love for you in words.

As you, the True Parents, have now succeeded in everything and have raised everything to its true level, you are now the Savior, Messiah and King of Kings of all of humanity!!! (You the man. No, I mean it, you the fucking man) Because on December 25, 2001, the Founders and representatives of Christianity and the other religions adopted written resolutions in which they without exception resolved to participate in realizing the peaceful unification of the cosmos, while attending the True Parents, it is right and proper that the True Parents are exalted in the position of True Parents of all humankind. I, the God of all people, desire this and want to see it happen.

Despite the people of the world not yet fully understanding the position of True Parents, because the position should be fulfilled internally, I, the God of all people, invite the True Parents to the position of King of Kings.

Because the True Parents have, in my place, endured countless difficult paths, I now want to bestow upon you all of the gratitude, inspiration, excitement and joy that I have been feeling. I want you to inherit all that is mine.

My beloved True Parents! I have wanted to express my heart to you for a long time, but I have not had such an opportunity. However, now this daughter of mine has looked into my heart. This has allowed this time to come to pass, and I would like to express to you my gratitude.

True Parents! My beloved True Parents! I want to hold you in my bosom and not let you go! It is a waste for me to walk the floor with my two legs. I want to hold you all night and talk to you! (Okay, this is a bit uncomfortable, isn't it? God wants to spoon with the Rev. Moon. I feel so dirty now)

I, the God of all people, have faith. I believe in the True Parents. I know and remember all of the difficulties, pain and suffering that you have had to endure. I have seen it all. It was all my responsibility, yet you endured and raised a victorious standard. How can I ever forget you? I am grateful.

I am so happy because of you. Truly, I thank you for your hard work.

My beloved True Parents, victory to you! Victory to the Saviors of humanity! Victory to the King of Kings, True Parents!

I, the God of all people, sincerely convey this to my beloved True Parents.

Midnight, December 28, 2001

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Now here's the kicker. Despite making such monumentally stupid claims as this "spirit world seminar", this guy not only has followers, he as millions of them. One of them is none other than Jonathan Wells, one of the most prominent advocates of Intelligent Design Creationism and a senior fellow at the Discovery Institute. Now here's the real kicker. Rev. Moon gave a speech at the Dirkson Senate Office Building on March 23rd of this year, which culminated in a ceremony where he was crowned King of Kings with 81 congressmen and senators present, including prominent Republican Curt Weldon (read about his spokesperson's prevarication on the subject here). The investigative reporter John Gorenfeld has a transcript of the video and lots more information. Gorenfeld has done some incredible work exposing Moon's activities in the United States as well as his unbelievably bizarre ideas.

Rev. Moon has become enormously powerful in the American political system, especially on the right wing, but today he is building alliances on the left as well. He owns the Washington Times, a conservative newspaper, he owns United Press International, and his front groups fund a wide range of right wing foundations, some of whom have received federal tax money through Bush's faith-based initiatives program. He has even built strong ties to religious right and allegedly Christian leaders like Jerry Falwell, Tim LaHaye and Pat Robertson. And what does Rev. Moon have in mind for America? How about this little tidbit from a speech he gave at his palace in Korea:

There will be a purge on God's orders, and evil will be eliminated like shadows. Gays will be eliminated, the 3 Israels will unite. If not then they will be burned. We do not know what kind of world God will bring but this is what happens. It will be greater than the communist purge but at God's orders.
How's that for chilling?

Posted by Ed at 11:13 AM | Comments (8) | TrackBack