Fantasyland author and public radio host Kurt Andersen displayed the condescending kind of liberal haughtiness that helped get Donald Trump elected as he looked down on people of faith, including those brave men and women who helped found America or as Andersen called them a “cult of religious nuts.”
On the August 7 edition of PBS’s Charlie Rose show the author who penned The Atlantic article “How America Lost Its Mind” (that trashed Trump, Rush Limbaugh and the conservative movement) told Rose the reasons, in his view, the country had lost its mind. One of them was religion.
When Rose asked Andersen what role religion played in America, the author responded that “America is exceptionally religious, has always been exceptionally religious compared to the rest…” That’s when Rose interrupted Andersen to remind him America was “Founded by people who were seeking religious freedom.” To which Andersen corrected him by insulting people of faith and the Founders: “Well that’s one – that’s a charitable way of putting it. Founded also by a theocratic cult of religious nuts.”
Rose let the grotesque insult slide by simply responding: “Okay. Right, right.” Andersen then proceeded to depict America’s “religiosity” as being out of step with the rest of the “developed world” and added “once you are, as a culture, more inclined to believe in magic, in the supernatural events….it’s gonna leach out into, into not believing in climate change.”
The following is the relevant excerpt as it was aired on the August 7 edition of PBS’s Charlie Rose show:
CHARLIE ROSE: Factor in religion.
KURT ANDERSEN: America is exceptionally religious, has always been exceptionally religious compared to the rest –
ROSE: Founded by people who were seeking religious freedom.
ANDERSEN: Well that’s one – that’s a charitable way of putting it. Founded also by a theocratic cult of religious nuts.
ROSE: Okay. Right, right.
ANDERSEN: But yes. And so we have always been more religious than the rest of the developed world. More than Europe back then, more than Japan and Australia and Canada now. We are outliers in our religiosity compared to the rest of the developed world, the rich world. By not just a little bit, a lot. We are more extravagantly religious, we are more – we are more religious. We – I mean it’s – there’s no coincidence that we invented Mormonism, we invented pentecostalism. Compared to our set of Europe, Canada, Australia, the modern developed world we’re not like any of them in our religiosity. And so once you, once you are, as a culture, more inclined to believe in magic, in the supernatural events –
ANDERSEN: – it’s not gonna stay in its religious realm. It’s gonna, it’s gonna leach out into, into not believing in climate change.