The Jesus Scam

I want to put aside talking about the awful Trump administration to instead talk about the awful Christian Right, specifically Jerry Falwell, Jr. A few days ago Politico published a long exposé on Falwell that accuses him of multiple ethical lapses and possible criminal activity.

Falwell is president of the nonprofit Liberty University, a 501(c)(3) organization. Under Falwell’s direction, Liberty has become less of a school and more of a real-estate empire.

Falwell presides over a culture of self-dealing, directing university resources into projects and real estate deals in which his friends and family have stood to make personal financial gains. Among the previously unreported revelations are Falwell’s decision to hire his son Trey’s company to manage a shopping center owned by the university, Falwell’s advocacy for loans given by the university to his friends, and Falwell’s awarding university contracts to businesses owned by his friends.

“We’re not a school; we’re a real estate hedge fund,” said a senior university official with inside knowledge of Liberty’s finances. “We’re not educating; we’re buying real estate every year and taking students’ money to do it.”

Falwell also has other interests, as summarized at TPM:

Jerry and his wife Becki seem to have a pattern of striking up intimate relationships with younger, extremely fit men; nude or provocative pics of Becki get into the mix somehow and then suddenly the younger guy is set up with his own business courtesy of a few million from the Falwells or Liberty University. …

…Provocative or nude photos of Becki Falwell also seem to be an open secret among top Liberty executives and even present in many inboxes.

Falwell also enjoys clubbing, which wouldn’t be a scandal except that Liberty University students are not allowed to drink and dance. So when Jerry and his son Trey are photographed at a Miami night spot, the photos have to be made to disappear.

Jerry brings in his cyber fixer from Liberty to make the pictures disappear. This is the same cyber-fixer who Michael Cohen hired to fix a series of online polls for Donald Trump back in 2015. How did he do that since the cyber-fixer works for Liberty University?

Well, he has a private consulting business on the side. He’s also now been promoted to the top at Liberty.

And then there is Falwell’s endorsement of Trump. The endorsement itself wouldn’t be a scandal, but he managed to drag Liberty University itself into Trump’s online poll fixing scheme by using a university social media account to promote one of the rigged polls. Politico quotes a tax expert: “A 501(c)(3) organization trying to influence a poll so that a candidate’s fortunes are promoted or demoted is not permitted.”

See also Jerry Falwell Jr., and the allegations against him, explained at Vox.

What is more American than big-name evangelicals getting caught in sex-and-money scandals? Certainly Falwell is part of the rich tradition of Jimmy Swaggart, Ted Haggart, and Jim Bakker. However, it should be said that Fallwell is not ordained; he’s a lawyer. Jesus is just the family business.

I take it from reading several articles that the students and faculty are very upset with Falwell. I’d feel bad for them except that they all appear to venerate the late Jerry Falwell, Sr., a despable segregationist whose political influence is still warping this country.

10 thoughts on “The Jesus Scam

  1. Our Evangelical "Chritians" are fine with tRUMP separating families, keeping children in filthy cages, and any number of other cruel and abusive policies towards the poor, the old, the disabled, women, LGBTQ folks etc…

    But, when tRUMP says, "goddamn," the propellers on their tits get in an uproar!

    Figures, doesn't it?!?

    I'm an Agnostic, so I don't believe that Jesus reigns.

    But I'm pretty "GODDAMN" sure that with our Evangelical "Chrustians," hypocrisy does!!!!!

  2. The kicker is that Fallwell asked the FBI to investigate whether crimes were committed in releasing information and confidential emails to the media. Stop and process that. Falwell wants Trump to intervene and use the DOJ to find and criminally punish Fallwell's enemies at Liberty U. (That's my biased interpretation but am I far from the truth?)

  3. If you're doing business with a religious son of a bitch, get it in writing; his word isn't worth shit, not with the good Lord telling him how to fuck you on the deal.

    Wm. Burroughs

  4. “Of all the systems of religion that ever were invented, there is no more derogatory to the Almighty, more unedifying to man, more repugnant to reason, and more contradictory to itself than this thing called Christianity. Too absurd for belief, too impossible to convince, and too inconsistent for practice, it renders the heart torpid or produces only atheists or fanatics. As an engine of power, it serves the purpose of despotism, and as a means of wealth, the avarice of priests, but so far as respects the good of man in general it leads to nothing here or hereafter.” ? Thomas Paine, The Age of Reason

    More here:

  5. Winston,

    Paine should have added the subjugation of women.

    That may be the greatest problem in all major religions – or, at least most of the religions West of Asia.

  6. c u n d gulag,

    Paine was an early proponent of women's rights:

    However, it's important to put him into historical context. It's also important for Americans to understand that the US was not founded on Christianity, as many claim. This was specifically spelled out in the first draft of the Treaty of Tripoli:

    "the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion."

    James Madison, father of the constitution, wrote this:

    "During almost fifteen centuries has the legal establishment of Christianity been on trial. What have been its fruits? More or less in all places, pride and indolence in the Clergy, ignorance and servility in the laity, in both, superstition, bigotry and persecution."


    • Something is desperately wrong with this site. I have clicked the like button 100,000 times and it only shows once.


  7. The pastors of these so called evangelical Christians, including many of them who stand behind Trump, like Paula White and others, preach a false doctrine called prosperity gospel.

     Its a purely American creation, designed to, like many things American,  separate fools from their money by teaching that you can essentially buy God's favor, i.e. "plant a seed offering" of a money, which goes to the pastor of course, and then God will "bless" you materially as well.  The "evidence" of this is in the outrageous wealth of these pastors, built on tax-free "seeds" from their faithful. 

    Prosperity gospel perverts the scriptures to support the con.  Its little wonder they support Trump, and he them.



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