Bloomberg to spend $50 million to “outmuscle” the NRA

posted at 8:01 am on April 16, 2014 by Ed Morrissey

Actually, it’s difficult to choose whether to start with the first paragraph or the last paragraph in this New York Times report on Michael Bloomberg’s latest project. The first paragraph covers Bloomberg’s ongoing efforts to pass gun-control legislation after the failure of his Mayors Against Illegal Guns to move the needle at all on his agenda. Besides, several of the mayors walked out after it became obvious that Bloomberg opposed a lot more than just illegal guns … which are, of course, already illegal.

This time Bloomberg wants to spend $50 million to set up a grassroots network to take on the National Rifle Association:

Michael R. Bloomberg, making his first major political investment since leaving office, plans to spend $50 million this year building a nationwide grass-roots network to motivate voters who feel strongly about curbing gun violence, an organization he hopes can eventually outmuscle the National Rifle Association.

Normally, that would be arrogant enough to fuel a few blog posts all on its own. That brings us to the last paragraph, in which Bloomberg mulled over his mortality with NYT reporter Jeremy Peters. And … well, this has to be read to be grasped:

But if he senses that he may not have as much time left as he would like, he has little doubt about what would await him at a Judgment Day. Pointing to his work on gun safety, obesity and smoking cessation, he said with a grin: “I am telling you if there is a God, when I get to heaven I’m not stopping to be interviewed. I am heading straight in. I have earned my place in heaven. It’s not even close.”

Ahem. According to Bloomberg, there may or may not be a God, but Bloomberg will tell Him what to do in the former case. I’m not an expert on Bloomberg’s Reform Judaism, but, ah … I’m pretty sure that’s not how it works. Or maybe Bloomberg just believes that heaven is the eternal nanny state. Hard to guess, really, from the data presented here, but from Bloomberg’s track record here on this side of the veil, I’d guess that Bloomberg figures to be on Big Gulp/Trans-Fat Watch for the rest of eternity. That may be heaven for Bloomberg, but how many of us dream of an afterlife with a self-important bureaucrat telling us and God how it’s going to be?

Speaking of which, here’s Bloomberg’s idea about how to win friends and influence people here on Earth:

Mr. Bloomberg, the former mayor of New York, said gun control advocates need to learn from the N.R.A. and punish those politicians who fail to support their agenda — even Democrats whose positions otherwise align with his own.

“They say, ‘We don’t care. We’re going to go after you,’ ” he said of the N.R.A. “ ‘If you don’t vote with us we’re going to go after your kids and your grandkids and your great-grandkids. And we’re never going to stop.’ ”

He added: “We’ve got to make them afraid of us.”

Well, it’s his money and he can do what he wants with it, but there are over 60 million lawful firearms owners in the US. He’s not even putting up a dollar against each of those. Fifty million samoleans might buy an election or two in New York, but spread out across the US for grassroots purposes, it’s not going to make as much of an impact as Bloomberg anticipates. It’s just a little over a fifth of the NRA’s annual budget, and they raise four times that much each year from their membership alone.

If Bloomberg thinks he can bully gun owners, he’s got another think coming. His arrogance really does know no bounds, and his Democratic allies had better rethink their relationship to him before political lightning strikes too close to them … or some other kind of lightning.

Update: Reform Judaism, not reform Judaism; it’s been corrected above.


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May every penny be wasted!

Shy Guy on April 16, 2014 at 8:06 AM

This is entirely vanity on his part. He lost the battle. He’s doubling down to save face. But…

He’s throwing his money away. This ain’t happening.

hawkdriver on April 16, 2014 at 8:06 AM

50 million doesn’t buy what is used to. Didn’t Maryland or Oregon spend 6 times that in their ObamaCare rollout fiascos and have to rinse the whole thing down the drain?

Marcus on April 16, 2014 at 8:08 AM

Find something important to do with your money, genius. There are people out there hurting from socialism.

crankyoldlady on April 16, 2014 at 8:08 AM

Mr. Bloomberg, the former mayor of New York, said gun control advocates need to learn from the N.R.A. and punish those politicians who fail to support their agenda — even Democrats whose positions otherwise align with his own.

Says the guy whose organization honored the Tsarnaev brothers as victims of gun violence. Remember that.

Happy Nomad on April 16, 2014 at 8:08 AM

This is what happens when you let a filthy rich liberal sit around idle.

rplat on April 16, 2014 at 8:09 AM

Find something important to do with your money, genius. There are people out there hurting from socialism.

crankyoldlady on April 16, 2014 at 8:08 AM

Oh please! Bloomberg thinks he’s doing God’s work. Which only affirms the fact that liberalism is a religion unto itself.

Happy Nomad on April 16, 2014 at 8:10 AM

The NRA promotes gun safety and responsible ownership. Whey doesn’t he go after the DA’s that won’t prosecute criminals and judges that allow plea bargains? Why does he want to disarm law abiding citizens? The second amendment is not about hunting it is about the free citizens of this country being able to protect themselves from an all powerful tyrannical government bent on making everyone a listless drone like they have in the inner cities.

deimos on April 16, 2014 at 8:11 AM

This is what happens when you let a filthy rich liberal sit around idle.

rplat on April 16, 2014 at 8:09 AM

I can only imagine what the filthy stupid rat-eared wonder is going to do with his time once he leaves office.

Happy Nomad on April 16, 2014 at 8:11 AM

Hm. The disciples had swords with them in the garden at Gethsemane.

Bloomberg believes he gets in to Heaven automatically.

More likely, he’ll get some rather pointed questions about the way New York City is run. Followed by some even more pointed ones about how many people died at the hands of criminals across the country while he was busy doing everything he could to block law-abiding citizens from being able to defend themselves against said criminals.

I have a sneaking suspicion his “final destination” will be significantly warmer than he thinks.

clear ether

eon

eon on April 16, 2014 at 8:11 AM

I think he’s certifiably insane.

crankyoldlady on April 16, 2014 at 8:13 AM

Hope he loses his fortune…Because he’s drunk on his own delusions of grandeur….

workingclass artist on April 16, 2014 at 8:13 AM

But if he senses that he may not have as much time left as he would like, he has little doubt about what would await him at a Judgment Day. Pointing to his work on gun safety, obesity and smoking cessation, he said with a grin: “I am telling you if there is a God, when I get to heaven I’m not stopping to be interviewed. I am heading straight in. I have earned my place in heaven. It’s not even close.”

Gotta love these arrogant pols.

Bloomberg thinks he can bully God, and Obama thinks he is God.

Bitter Clinger on April 16, 2014 at 8:13 AM

Thanks to people like Bloomberg and Obama, the Texas State Rifle Association’s membership went up by 30% in the last year and I’m sure other state associations had the same success. Dream on, we’re tired of this relentless assault on the 2nd Amendment.

cdrt on April 16, 2014 at 8:13 AM

Chump change for him. He is free to spend his money anyway he chooses to, but this is just a waste. Every time some big time money bags person pulls a stunt like this the membership in the NRA, GOA and others climbs.

Johnnyreb on April 16, 2014 at 8:16 AM

“I am telling you if there is a God, when I get to heaven I’m not stopping to be interviewed. I am heading straight in. I have earned my place in heaven. It’s not even close.”

Camel, eye of a needle, and all that.

CC Senor on April 16, 2014 at 8:16 AM

Everytime I see somebody like this I’m more and more convinced that too many of this generation spent too much time sitting in the park imbibing illegal substances.

crankyoldlady on April 16, 2014 at 8:17 AM

Like they say: A fool and his money are some party…

apostic on April 16, 2014 at 8:19 AM

when I get to heaven I’m not stopping to be interviewed. I am heading straight in. I have earned my place in heaven. It’s not even close.”

Yeah, because we get to heaven by acts not faith. /

Happy Nomad on April 16, 2014 at 8:20 AM

Gun owners (37% of the U.S. population), 1,052,334 dead since 1981. Written another way: Since 1982, for every one hundred and eleven “has gun” people, one has died.
 
HIV+ (35/100ths of 1% of the U.S. population), 636,000 dead since 1981. Written another way: Since 1981, for every three “has HIV” people, one has died.
 
If the “have HIV” population could figure out a way to be as safe as the “have gun” population they would’ve only lost 16,025 people to HIV/AIDS since 1981.
 
Sixteen thousand twenty-five.
 
(Thanks again for your help with the data, Ric)

rogerb on April 16, 2014 at 8:20 AM

Now I might be wrong, but isn’t a nationwide network started and financed by a billionaire exactly the opposite of grass roots?

John Deaux on April 16, 2014 at 8:21 AM

Hard to believe that there are people out there who actually think Bloomberg is “intelligent”.

GarandFan on April 16, 2014 at 8:21 AM

I’ve always wondered about people who come up with the idea of thinking they can start a big grassroots effort with some big donation.

That sorta goes against the whole concept of grassroots. It’s not really grassroots when you do that… you’re just buying employees who do your bidding. It’s a top down enterprise. It’s really not grassroots. Most of that $50 million will be wasted.

JellyToast on April 16, 2014 at 8:21 AM

“I am telling you if there is a God, when I get to heaven I’m not stopping to be interviewed. I am heading straight in. I have earned my place in heaven. It’s not even close.”

Camel, eye of a needle, and all that.

CC Senor on April 16, 2014 at 8:16 AM

Yep!

workingclass artist on April 16, 2014 at 8:21 AM

Moron thinks he operates from a morally neutral position and his good deeds outweigh his bad. Lots of secular Jews think like that.

Cleombrotus on April 16, 2014 at 8:22 AM

$50 million doesn’t even buy $25 million Bloomer.

docflash on April 16, 2014 at 8:23 AM

Taking down the NRA won’t be enough. The man is a buffoon.

rickv404 on April 16, 2014 at 8:24 AM

FWIW, if the “have guns” population posed similar risks as the “have HIV” population there would’ve been 38 million gunfire deaths since 1982 vs. the actual 1 million.
 
(Thanks again for your help, Ric)

rogerb on April 16, 2014 at 8:24 AM

Now I might be wrong, but isn’t a nationwide network started and financed by a billionaire exactly the opposite of grass roots?

John Deaux on April 16, 2014 at 8:21 AM

It’s that special grass….the kind they recently legalized in CO & WA.

Bitter Clinger on April 16, 2014 at 8:26 AM

“I am telling you if there is a God, when I get to heaven I’m not stopping to be interviewed. I am heading straight in. I have earned my place in heaven. It’s not even close.”

Well.. good luck with that.

You’ve just told the Father that His only beloved Son whom He sacrificed at the cross was not good enough to satisfy you… that your money and work against fast food is a much higher and more worthy qualification to enter heaven.

I guess we’ll eventually all see how the Father takes that.

JellyToast on April 16, 2014 at 8:27 AM

Go for it Champ.

ToddPA on April 16, 2014 at 8:28 AM

Reminds me, time to renew my NRA membersbip. Thanks mike.

wolly4321 on April 16, 2014 at 8:31 AM

But if he senses that he may not have as much time left as he would like, he has little doubt about what would await him at a Judgment Day.

Well, ya can’t take it with you, might as well spend it on stupid vanity projects.

Maybe he thinks he can buy his way into Heaven and get preferential treatment.

tru2tx on April 16, 2014 at 8:32 AM

This man’s vanity will come back to haunt him come judgment day if not sooner.

iceman1960 on April 16, 2014 at 8:34 AM

They never seem to realize that politicians are not afraid of the NRA….they are afraid of their huge numbers of members because they vote and they are serious about a single issue.

No amount of money will ever change that.

Mord on April 16, 2014 at 8:35 AM

Hubris knows no bounds, I suppose.

The NRA does not succeed because they have a lot of money, but because they have an impassioned membership. Good luck finding equal numbers on the other side, Mini-Mussolini.

NotCoach on April 16, 2014 at 8:35 AM

Based on Bloomberg’s views about Heaven, he’s already got Heaven on earth.
But he can’t stay here. Death’s coming for you eventually, Mike. Will you repent of your sins before it does?

22044 on April 16, 2014 at 8:36 AM

Gun control is over for the Left and he can’t seem to face the facts and let go. If anyone needs proof look at Connecticut and the tremendous amount of non-compliance with all of the new gun laws there. The Hartford Courant ran articles on it and came to the conclusion that nearly 75% of the estimated owners of newly banned “assault weapons” and high capacity magazines refused to register them.

Only ~450 thousand hi cap magazines were registered by the deadline out of an estimated 2 million owned in the State at the time the law was passed.

The governor and the State Legislature are in a panic and have no clue how to proceed and if truth be told, they are frightened. They are frightened because they thought everyone in the State would meekly go to the State Police and register their stuff like docile good little sheep, but they didn’t. The media went ga-ga and showed picture after picture and video on the 6 O’clock news of long lines on the last day to register guns and mags with the State Police and they thought they had a winner. But the law failed and in a very bad way for the State.

When I was in the Navy and made Chief I learned to never give an order that you know wont be obeyed. Obviously the Governor and State Legislature in CT forgot that lesson or never learned it and now their hands are tied.

The latest attempt to try and fix this mess was to have an amnesty period to let people register those guns and mags again. Good luck with that.

Johnnyreb on April 16, 2014 at 8:36 AM

Everytime I see somebody like this I’m more and more convinced that too many of this generation spent too much time sitting in the park imbibing illegal substances.

crankyoldlady on April 16, 2014 at 8:17 AM

You mean like Big Gulps, trans fats, and salt?

Happy Nomad on April 16, 2014 at 8:37 AM

What good will it be for a man if he gains the whole world, yet forfeits his soul? Or what can a man give in exchange for his soul? (NIV, Matthew 16:26)

workingclass artist on April 16, 2014 at 8:37 AM

I can only imagine what the filthy stupid rat-eared wonder is going to do with his time once he leaves office.

Roast his nuts in the Lake of Fire, I should think… That’s what the Good Book suggests.

Dirty Creature on April 16, 2014 at 8:38 AM

Isn’t vanity one of the major sins?

crankyoldlady on April 16, 2014 at 8:38 AM

Why not allocate real money, Mike? Say $500,000,000. Maybe that will move the needle.

tomshup on April 16, 2014 at 8:39 AM

If you want to do God’s work, do God’s work.
If you want to do Caesar’s work, do Caesar’s work.

Don’t confuse God for Caesar.

Lonetown on April 16, 2014 at 8:39 AM

Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. In this way they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life. (NIV, 1 Timothy 6:17-19)

workingclass artist on April 16, 2014 at 8:40 AM

Saw this on RedState/Erick Erickson’s post about this issue. Seems to fit here too.

“Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience. They may be more likely to go to Heaven yet at the same time likelier to make a Hell of earth. This very kindness stings with intolerable insult. To be “cured” against one’s will and cured of states which we may not regard as disease is to be put on a level of those who have not yet reached the age of reason or those who never will; to be classed with infants, imbeciles, and domestic animals.” – C.S. Lewis

22044 on April 16, 2014 at 8:41 AM

Or maybe Bloomberg just believes that heaven is the eternal nanny state.

Exactly, exactly, exactly, exactly!

Axe on April 16, 2014 at 8:41 AM

“I am telling you if there is a God, when I get to heaven I’m not stopping to be interviewed. I am heading straight in. I have earned my place in heaven. It’s not even close.”

Megalomaniac.

Michael R. Bloomberg … plans to spend $50 million this year building a nationwide grass-roots network to motivate voters who feel strongly about curbing gun violence…

If a single guy has to spend $50 mio to build that organization, then its hardly grass-roots now is it? I mean if there were really people who felt so strongly about gun-control, why dont they act before Bloomberg gives top-down orders? How is such an organization grass-roots? The NYT seems to be unclear on the concept.

Valkyriepundit on April 16, 2014 at 8:42 AM

We really all owe Bloomberg our thanks – if it wasn’t for megalomaniacs like him, most people wouldn’t believe our message that they really DO want to take away our guns – and not just some of them, ALL of them.

If it wasn’t for him, most people would fall for the old “oh, we just want a few restrictions on a few things”. That’s a lie, it’s always been a lie, and thanks to Bloomberg, it’s easy to prove that it’s a lie.

Thanks, Bloomy!!!

Tom Servo on April 16, 2014 at 8:44 AM

Harry Reid and other lefties are going to be pissed when they find out some billionaire is influencing politics!

gwelf on April 16, 2014 at 8:44 AM

This time Bloomberg wants to spend $50 million to set up a grassroots astroturf network to take on the National Rifle Association …

Murders in Chicago, pop. 2.715, during 2012: 532

Murders in Houston, pop. 2.161 million, during 2012: 216

Very significant minority populations, very significant poverty, lots of drugs and gangs, … what accounts for the difference in murder rates I wonder? Hmmm.

And while I’m at it, has anyone pointed out that Bloomberg’s campaign is completely racist? He’s only going after legal guns that kill suburban white kids, not the illegal guns that kill children of color every day in places like, oh, say, Chicago and Houston.

M240H on April 16, 2014 at 8:44 AM

Satan and Bloomberg have a lot in common. Both tried to elevate themselves above God… and if you believe, we all know how that worked out.

iceman1960 on April 16, 2014 at 8:45 AM

22044 on April 16, 2014 at 8:41 AM

Very appropriate.

crankyoldlady on April 16, 2014 at 8:45 AM

Arrogant people like Bloomberg deserve to be broke. Let him spend it all.

bflat879 on April 16, 2014 at 8:45 AM

some billionaire is influencing politics

No, he isn’t. But nobody tell him, ok? He’s fun to watch.

Dirty Creature on April 16, 2014 at 8:48 AM

Megalomaniac.

Michael R. Bloomberg … plans to spend $50 million this year building a nationwide grass-roots network to motivate voters who feel strongly about curbing gun violence…

If a single guy has to spend $50 mio to build that organization, then its hardly grass-roots now is it? I mean if there were really people who felt so strongly about gun-control, why dont they act before Bloomberg gives top-down orders? How is such an organization grass-roots? The NYT seems to be unclear on the concept.

Valkyriepundit on April 16, 2014 at 8:42 AM

“A cynic is a man who knows the price of everything, and the value of nothing.”
― Oscar Wilde

workingclass artist on April 16, 2014 at 8:49 AM

I am telling you if there is a God, when I get to heaven I’m not stopping to be interviewed. I am heading straight in. I have earned my place in heaven. It’s not even close.

Therein lies the humanist’s problem. Because they don’t correctly assess the profundity of man’s sin problem, they think they can resolve our alienation from God on their own merits. This in turn drives them either to dissolution, to apathy, or to a hyperactive works-salvation regimen. But because they haven’t correctly assessed the problem, their works are at odds with reality and only works mayhem.

God didn’t send Jesus to die superfluously. If Bloomberg can enter heaven solely based on whatever his good works might amount to, the Atonement was for nothing. One day he’ll have to try to explain that to Jesus.

paul1149 on April 16, 2014 at 8:54 AM

HEY MR MAYOR ! . . . . . . . . . . . . . :

1) – What do you mean “IF”?

2) – … You need to document all of that, then show it to the keepers of the “gates of HELL”, so they’ll know you’re at the wrong place.

You don’t want any “administrative errors” to foul your ‘after-life.’

listens2glenn on April 16, 2014 at 9:04 AM

What’s that old saying, oh yeah, a fool and his money are soon parted. Fits this moron well. How did he get to be so rich anyway?

Kissmygrits on April 16, 2014 at 9:05 AM

“A cynic is a man who knows the price of everything, and the value of nothing.”
― Oscar Wilde

workingclass artist on April 16, 2014 at 8:49 AM

I’ll see your quote and raise you another. “There is nothing more frightful than a bustling ignorance”, Goethe.

crankyoldlady on April 16, 2014 at 9:05 AM

I’m positive you don’t and can’t earn your way into heaven. It’s a gift if you want to accept it. Maybe someone should read John 3:16 to the mayor.

Kissmygrits on April 16, 2014 at 9:09 AM

I hope age takes care of this problem sooner rather than later. Would love to be a fly on the wall when Bloomberg tells god how it’s gonna work…

Doomsday on April 16, 2014 at 9:12 AM

I posted this in the headline thread.

Well according to the greatest Jew to have ever lived and the only one to have resurrected himself from death.

John 14:6
6 Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

and

Ephesians 2:8-9, “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.”

No one can “earn” a spot in heaven. That any think otherwise suggests they are headed in an opposite direction than they expect.

Skwor on April 16, 2014 at 9:12 AM

As I posted on the headline thread:

“I am telling you if there is a God, when I get to heaven I’m not stopping to be interviewed. I am heading straight in. I have earned my place in heaven. It’s not even close.”

And St Peter will shoot your sorry butt because you’re not a legal resident, then the rest of the apostles will pitch you off and down into the pit. There is only ONE huge ego allowed in heaven and that is God, himself. At least He has a few reasons to think so highly of himself.

GWB on April 16, 2014 at 9:22 AM

Reform Judaism = Atheist FEEEEVVAAAAH

Eph on April 16, 2014 at 9:23 AM

I’m positive you don’t and can’t earn your way into heaven. It’s a gift if you want to accept it. Maybe someone should read John 3:16 to the mayor.

Kissmygrits on April 16, 2014 at 9:09 AM

He’s a Jew. Might want to stick with the OT.

You know how liberals hate it when Christians dare express their faith outside the confines of the local church.

Happy Nomad on April 16, 2014 at 9:24 AM

I hope age takes care of this problem sooner rather than later. Would love to be a fly on the wall when Bloomberg tells god how it’s gonna work…

Doomsday on April 16, 2014 at 9:12 AM

I’m certain that the rat-eared wonder also thinks he has an E-Z pass to heaven. Because, clearly, God is doing it all wrong.

Happy Nomad on April 16, 2014 at 9:26 AM

to motivate voters who feel strongly about curbing gun violence

Why not use the dough to fight illegal immigration and gangs? That would be far more effective in curbing gun violence.

BuckeyeSam on April 16, 2014 at 9:26 AM

Anyone remember when Jason Mattera asked Bloomberg about his security detail?

Like other elites, Bloomberg is a hypocrite.

Fallon on April 16, 2014 at 9:29 AM

According to Bloomberg, there may or may not be a God, but Bloomberg will tell Him what to do in the former case. I’m not an expert on Bloomberg’s Reform Judaism, but, ah … I’m pretty sure that’s not how it works.

Jackie Mason summed up Reform Judaism in 4 words:

“Do what you want!”

Shy Guy on April 16, 2014 at 9:31 AM

Based on Bloomberg’s views about Heaven, he’s already got Heaven on earth.
But he can’t stay here. Death’s coming for you eventually, Mike. Will you repent of your sins before it does?

22044 on April 16, 2014 at 8:36 AM

As a friend, he needs to meet a slow, painful death from knives–or fists, the most frequent tool of murder.

Nutstuyu on April 16, 2014 at 9:31 AM

As a friend *said*…

Nutstuyu on April 16, 2014 at 9:31 AM

As an NRA member I applaud Bloomberg’s efforts. If it wasn’t for guys lie him the NRA wouldn’t be nearly what it is today. A Bloomberg does more to sell guns and recruit members than a Heston ever could.

claudius on April 16, 2014 at 9:32 AM

He’s a Jew. Might want to stick with the OT.

Happy Nomad on April 16, 2014 at 9:24 AM

Let me help with some which is mutually agreeable to a wider audience:

“Every one that is proud in heart is an abomination to the LORD; my hand upon it! he shall not be unpunished.” – Proverbs 16:5

Shy Guy on April 16, 2014 at 9:34 AM

I am pro-gun and I love Bloomberg. He makes gun grabbing almost impossible!

Never be critical of a incompetent general fighting for the other side…

William Eaton on April 16, 2014 at 9:37 AM

Book of Ecclesiastes, chapter 1, verses 1-3:

1 The words of the Preacher, the son of David, king in Jerusalem.

2 Vanity of vanities, saith the Preacher, vanity of vanities; all is vanity.

3 What profit hath a man of all his labor which he taketh under the sun?

itsspideyman on April 16, 2014 at 9:38 AM

“Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience. They may be more likely to go to Heaven yet at the same time likelier to make a Hell of earth. This very kindness stings with intolerable insult. To be “cured” against one’s will and cured of states which we may not regard as disease is to be put on a level of those who have not yet reached the age of reason or those who never will; to be classed with infants, imbeciles, and domestic animals.” – C.S. Lewis

I gotta apply this criticism to those who wish to criminalize homosexuality, or those who don’t want to decriminalize pot, as well. Plenty of responsible drug users and discreet gays/lesbians out there, you know. We can’t condemn “omnipotent moral busybodies” but spare those who would point the spear at our own oxen.

TMOverbeck on April 16, 2014 at 9:44 AM

Skwor on April 16, 2014 at 9:12 AM

A Christian trying to convince a Jew by quoting the New Testament is like a Mormon trying to convince a Catholic by quoting the Book of Mormon, or a Muslim trying to convince a Baptist by quoting the Quran.

aunursa on April 16, 2014 at 9:46 AM

This article makes an important point:

Mayors Against Illegal Guns isn’t about illegal guns at all. It seeks to restrict legally owned firearms and their purchases.

Russ in OR on April 16, 2014 at 9:46 AM

I’m not an expert on Bloomberg’s Reform Judaism, but, ah … I’m pretty sure that’s not how it works.

Not only is Bloomberg off, but he’s WAAAAAYYY off. There isn’t really a “heaven” in Judaism (not a heaven as Christians view the afterlife). For Jews, eternal life comes for the righteous – on Earth – after the messiah, when all the righteous will be arisen and live in Heaven on Earth.

In any case, Bloomberg is not even in the ballpark of righteous (self-righteous doesn’t really count) and should not expect to be resurrected in any way, shape, or form.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on April 16, 2014 at 9:55 AM

Hard to believe that there are people out there who actually think Bloomberg is “intelligent”.

GarandFan on April 16, 2014 at 8:21 AM

He has a lot of money, isn’t that the same thing?

Kjeil on April 16, 2014 at 9:56 AM

I just re-upped my NRA membership.

Thank you ex-Mayor Bloomberg!

aquaviva on April 16, 2014 at 9:59 AM

This reminds me of one of the few heaven jokes I’ve ever remembered.

Three men come to the pearly gates. St. Peter asks the first why he thinks he should be allowed to enter Heaven. The man clears his throat self-importantly and starts listing his good deeds. The list goes on. He finishes with a look of pride and expectation. St. Peter says, “thank you very much, but no, you’re not accepted.” The man, baffled, walks off. The second man steps up. St. Peter asks the same question. The man, a look of worry on his face after seeing the fate of the first man, scours his mind and carefully recites every good deed, however small, he can ever remember. A truly exhaustive if one-sided audit of his life. He finishes, a look of tremulous anticipation on his face. St. Peter smiles gently and says, “congratulations of your charity and virtue. But I’m sorry, you are denied.” The man, crushed, moves off.

The third man steps up. St. Peter asks, “and what entitles you to entry into the kingdom of Heaven, my son.”

The man, without hesitating, responds, “only the grace of God.”

“Welcome,” St. Peter says.

rrpjr on April 16, 2014 at 9:59 AM

There isn’t really a “heaven” in Judaism (not a heaven as Christians view the afterlife). For Jews, eternal life comes for the righteous – on Earth – after the messiah, when all the righteous will be arisen and live in Heaven on Earth.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on April 16, 2014 at 9:55 AM

This misconception is repeated over and over again here.

Learn: Afterlife according to Judaism

Shy Guy on April 16, 2014 at 9:59 AM

I gotta apply this criticism to those who wish to criminalize homosexuality, or those who don’t want to decriminalize pot, as well. Plenty of responsible drug users and discreet gays/lesbians out there, you know. We can’t condemn “omnipotent moral busybodies” but spare those who would point the spear at our own oxen.

TMOverbeck on April 16, 2014 at 9:44 AM

Sin is sin, no matter if you do it in private or out in the open.

Sterling Holobyte on April 16, 2014 at 10:00 AM

“A cynic is a man who knows the price of everything, and the value of nothing.”
― Oscar Wilde

workingclass artist on April 16, 2014 at 8:49 AM

Didn’t Oscar Wilde convert to Christianity before he died?!
So maybe there is hope for someone like Bloomberg to enter Heaven. But first he must realize it is not by his own hand.

Sterling Holobyte on April 16, 2014 at 10:03 AM

Shy Guy on April 16, 2014 at 9:59 AM

If you’re into more modern mysticism, then good for you. I’m not. I am discussing traditional Judaism and its teachings. The afterlife discussion is about the mashiach and the resurrection of the righteous on Earth. Judaism doesn’t have much else to say about the afterlife outside of that. Even your own link says this very explicitly:

The existence of the afterlife is not stated explicitly in the Torah itself, because as human beings we have to focus on our task in this world.

Go argue with your own link.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on April 16, 2014 at 10:07 AM

Skwor on April 16, 2014 at 9:12 AM

A Christian trying to convince a Jew by quoting the New Testament is like a Mormon trying to convince a Catholic by quoting the Book of Mormon, or a Muslim trying to convince a Baptist by quoting the Quran.

aunursa on April 16, 2014 at 9:46 AM

Not necessarily…Perhaps Messianic Jews are having an impact?

Rabbis Reconsider Jesus (summary based on an original article at Israel Today)

“Jewish attitudes towards Jesus are changing. Rabbi Evan Moffic of the Solel Congregation in Chicago gives further evidence of this in his synopsis of what modern rabbis are saying about the carpenter from Nazareth. Moffic represents a younger, more inquisitive generation of Jewish thinking about Jesus. His findings might surprise many.

Here is a summary from Moffic’s “5 Rabbi’s Explain Jesus.”

A National Hero

In his book “Kosher Jesus” Orthodox Rabbi Shmuley Boteach writes that Jesus was “a Jewish patriot murdered by Rome for his struggle on behalf of his people… Jesus, I will continue to show, was a great political leader who fought for the liberation of his (Jewish) people.”

The idea that Jesus was “a great political leader” is not new. Many first century Jewish people including many disciples of Jesus believed that the Messiah would free the nation from Roman occupation. But when a modern 21st century popular Orthodox Rabbi calls Jesus a “patriot” and a “hero,” that news.
Perhaps even more controversial is that fact that rabbi Boteach has been very open with Messianic Jews, though his attempts at dialogue with Messianics has annoyed many in the ultra-orthodox establishment. In 2008 Boteach debated with Michael Brown, a Messianic Jewish leader, on whether belief in Jesus is compatible with Judaism.

Boteach is an American Orthodox rabbi, author, TV host and public speaker. Newsweek magazine named him one of the 50 most influential rabbis in the United States three years in a row.

The Penultimate Messiah
Rabbi Byron Sherwin is a rabbi in the Conservative Judaism movement. He trained at the Jewish Theological Seminary with Abraham Joshua Heschel. His list of scholarly articles and books is almost too numerous to count, on topics ranging from interfaith relations to bio-ethics to Jewish studies. Sherwin has been on the faculty of the Spertus Institute for Jewish Learning and Leadership in Chicago for 40 years.

Rabbi Sherwin sees Jesus as a for-runner to the ultimate messiah. Jesus serves a similar role as John the Baptist does for Christianity. As Professor Shaul Magid puts it, “Yitz Greenberg and Byron Sherwin base their writings on Jesus on a more nuanced view of ‘the messiah’ in Judaism that distinguishes between a penultimate and ultimate messianic figure, each serving a crucial role in the messianic process.” In other words, Jesus emerged out the yearning of first-century Jews for a national and spiritual savior, and his spiritual significance will be fulfilled in the future messianic period.

A Righteous Leader
Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi was ordained as an Orthodox rabbi in 1947 within the Chabad Lubavitch Hasidic community while under the leadership of the Lubavitcher Rebbe, Yosef Yitzchok Schneersohn. Schachter-Shalomi sees Jesus as a Jewish Tzadik, a person of unusual righteousness who serves as a bridge between his community and God. Jesus as an example of Jewish virtue is “Torah incarnate,” but not God incarnate. For Schachter-Shalomi, Jesus in his was opposition to the legal doctrine and focus of the Pharisees, offered a more mystical relationship with God through piety. In this way, Jesus served the same function for first-century Judean Jews as the Hasidic movement would serve for eighteenth-century European Jews.

A Rabbi
The great 19th- and early 20th-century American Rabbi Emil Hirsch wrote and spoke frequently about Jesus. He saw him as a champion of faith in human progress and a teacher of the Old Testament. As Hirsch proclaimed from the pulpit, “He was of us; he is of us. We quote the rabbis of the Talmud; shall we then, not also quote the rabbi of Bethlehem? Shall not he in whom there burned, if it burned in any one, the spirit and the light of Judaism, be reclaimed by the synagogue?” Hirsch’s point of view has been echoed in several contemporary books with the phrase “Rabbi Jesus” in their title.

An Ethical Exemplar
Emil Hirsch’s brother-in-law Kaufmann Kohler was also a prominent rabbi and scholar. He was president of the seminary for Reform Rabbis for 25 years. He wrote frequently about Jesus, and while he was critical of Jesus’ seeming dismissal of the law of the Old Testament, he highlighted his social message. For Kohler, Jesus was a “helper of the poor” and a “sympathizing friend of the fallen.” He said Jesus learned these values at the synagogue and brought them to the forefront of first-century Jewish life….”

http://abbalazarus.blogspot.com/2014/04/rabbis-reconsider-jesus.html

Link to original article:
http://www.israeltoday.co.il/NewsItem/tabid/178/nid/24556/Default.aspx?hp=readmore

workingclass artist on April 16, 2014 at 10:08 AM

I think he’s certifiably insane.

crankyoldlady on April 16, 2014 at 8:13 AM

That, or possessed by a demon. Maybe both…

Because his heart is departed from him that made him: for pride is the beginning of all sin: he that holdeth it, shall be filled with maledictions, and it shall ruin him in the end.~Ecclesiasticus 10:15

Pride, one of the seven Deadly Sins.

pannw on April 16, 2014 at 10:10 AM

Go argue with your own link.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on April 16, 2014 at 10:07 AM

There is no contradiction. Go and learn.

And, no, I’m not at all into “modern mysticism”, not more and not less.

Shy Guy on April 16, 2014 at 10:14 AM

The millions he dumped into Colorado to fight the recalls most likely had a negative effect, once voters realized who was ponying up the dough. Bloomberg doesn’t seem to be aware how toxic his name is in the West.

Whiskey Rebel on April 16, 2014 at 10:19 AM

A Christian trying to convince a Jew by quoting the New Testament is like a Mormon trying to convince a Catholic by quoting the Book of Mormon, or a Muslim trying to convince a Baptist by quoting the Quran.

aunursa on April 16, 2014 at 9:46 AM

Really?

So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth:
it shall not return unto me void,
but it shall accomplish that which I please,
and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it. Isa 55:11

Kjeil on April 16, 2014 at 10:20 AM

Why not use the dough to fight illegal immigration and gangs? That would be far more effective in curbing gun violence.

BuckeyeSam on April 16, 2014 at 9:26 AM

Well of course it would but at the cost of democrat votes so not an option. Don’t be foolish.

Oldnuke on April 16, 2014 at 10:21 AM

“A cynic is a man who knows the price of everything, and the value of nothing.”
― Oscar Wilde

workingclass artist on April 16, 2014 at 8:49 AM

Didn’t Oscar Wilde convert to Christianity before he died?!
So maybe there is hope for someone like Bloomberg to enter Heaven. But first he must realize it is not by his own hand.

Sterling Holobyte on April 16, 2014 at 10:03 AM

Interesting facts…and he was given the sacraments on his deathbed.

Facts about Wilde at this site.

excerpts:

He had been baptized a Catholic at the age of four or five by Rev. L.C. Fox of Dublin. His mother, although not a Catholic or even a believer, had procured the baptism secretly, in defiance of his agnostic father’s wishes, and because it was done privately, it was never registered. His father, a non-practicing Protestant and a Mason, sensed his son’s interest in the Church (he had befriended priests at school in Dublin) and forbade his conversion, even expressing the hope that his schooling at Oxford, which at the time did not admit Catholics, would purge him of his religious deviation. His father went so far as to threaten to disinherit young Wilde if he decided to follow through on his interest in the faith.

In an interview with a reporter from the Daily Chronicle of London three weeks before his death, Wilde attributed his “degeneracies” to the fact that he had not entered the Church when he was young. He especially regretted having been denied “the artistic side of the Church and the fragrance of its teachings.” He told the reporter, “I intend to be received before long.”

But Rev. Cuthbert Dunne, C.P., the priest who was with Wilde at his death, told a different story. When he arrived, Wilde was semi-comatose, so Dunne did not give him Holy Communion, but he did provisionally baptize him. In a report, Dunne wrote that, once roused, Wilde “gave signs of being inwardly conscious. He made brave efforts to speak, and would even continue for a time trying to talk . . . Indeed I was fully satisfied that he understood me when told that I was about to receive him into the Catholic Church and give him the Last Sacraments. From the signs he gave as well as from his attempted words, I was satisfied as to his full consent. And when I repeated close to his ear the Holy Names, the Acts of Contrition, Faith, Hope and Charity, with [an] act of humble resignation to the Will of God, he tried all through to say the words after me.” Moreover, at “subsequent visits, he repeated the prayers with me again and each time received Absolution.”

Why was a priest at Wilde’s deathbed in the first place? Wilde had often said to his friends that “Catholicism is the only religion to die in.” And in a letter written after his death, his lifetime Catholic friend Robert Ross revealed, “I had always promised to bring a priest to Wilde when he was dying, and I felt rather guilty that I had so often dissuaded him from becoming a Catholic, but you know my reasons for doing so.” Ross had wondered whether Wilde was really serious about wanting to convert. Also, Ross feared that Wilde would “relapse” into sinful behavior after converting, which would “cause grave scandal….”

http://www.catholiceducation.org/articles/arts/al0093.html

workingclass artist on April 16, 2014 at 10:22 AM

The mayor and his aides have been “relentless in their retaliation … in their stubborn determination to override any opposition, from any quarter, to the Taxi of Tomorrow,” according to the lawsuit filed late Wednesday in Manhattan Federal Court.

Those efforts, Freidman’s suit said, were compounded by Bloomberg’s recent comments when the mayor “personally threatened … Freidman during halftime at the Knicks/Pacers playoff game at Madison Square Garden, stating, ‘When I am out of office, I will destroy your f—ing industry,” and then stating, “after January, I am going to destroy all you f—ing guys.”

Heaven Can Wait.

cbenoistd on April 16, 2014 at 10:23 AM

…I’m not stopping to be interviewed. I am heading straight in.

Who does he think he is, Chuck Norris?

j/k

Kingfisher on April 16, 2014 at 10:26 AM

And, no, I’m not at all into “modern mysticism”, not more and not less.

Shy Guy on April 16, 2014 at 10:14 AM

The Zohar is not part of the Tanach.

Judaism does not guarantee fairness in life, other than the righteous being resurrected in the world to come. That’s about it. This is one of the difficult aspects of Judaism for many to accept. One cannot just apply logic to the discussion of the afterlife in Judaism and demand that the universe must conform. That isn’t how it works.

Judaism is almost exclusively concerned with the actions that one takes in this life. Judaism cares little for the motivation behind those actions but only that the actions should conform to Jewish law. This, of course, is another area where Christianity radically diverged from Judaism as the thoughts became as important, if not more, than the physical actions. Many Jews over the years have felt a bit left out as Christians spent loads of time theorizing about the afterlife (as that is real concentation of Christianity, as opposed to Judaism’s concentration on this life) and those mystical ruminations have crept into some Jewish thought. But traditional Judaism is about your actions here and now with the one ultimate end being the world to come HERE.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on April 16, 2014 at 10:29 AM

“In the end, however, Christ did not turn Wilde out — despite his sins, his unconscionable behavior toward his wife and two sons (the scandal of his trials had alienated them from him), his self-deceptions and deceptions of others, his vanity and pomposity, and all the other character failings that he wore so conspicuously on his sleeve. Only on the day before he died, and only thanks to the intervention of Ross — the man who had so often discouraged his conversion and who later downplayed it — and the priest whom Ross had found one week earlier, did Wilde finally receive any sacraments other than the baptism he was given secretly as a young boy.

In his stricken silence at the end, he might have recalled his 1881 poem, “San Miniato”:

See, I have climbed the mountain side
Up to this holy house of God,
Where once that Angel-Painter trod

Who saw the heavens opened wide,

And throned up the crescent moon
The Virginal white Queen of Grace Mary!
Could I but see thy face
Death could not come at all too soon.

O crowned by God with thorns and pain!
Mother of Christ! O mystic wife!
My heart is weary of this life
And over-sad to sing again.

O crowned by God with love and flame!
O crowned by Christ the Holy One!
O listen ere the searching sun
Show to the world my sin and shame.

http://www.catholiceducation.org/articles/arts/al0093.html

workingclass artist on April 16, 2014 at 10:29 AM

Nothing new here, it’s all been said before.

Germans who wish to use firearms should join the SS or the SA – ordinary citizens don’t need guns, as their having guns doesn’t serve the State.

Heinrich Himmler

“They say, ‘We don’t care. We’re going to go after you,’ ” he said of the N.R.A. “ ‘If you don’t vote with us we’re going to go after your kids and your grandkids and your great-grandkids. And we’re never going to stop.’ ”

He added: “We’ve got to make them afraid of us.”
Michael Bloomberg

The best political weapon is the weapon of terror. Cruelty commands respect. Men may hate us. But, we don’t ask for their love; only for their fear.

Heinrich Himmler

“I am telling you if there is a God, when I get to heaven I’m not stopping to be interviewed. I am heading straight in. I have earned my place in heaven. It’s not even close.”

Michael Bloomberg

“Who says I am not under the special protection of God?”

Adolf Hitler

Oldnuke on April 16, 2014 at 10:34 AM

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