I am an atheist and can see no basis for people believing that there is a god. However I will leave that for the moment. It is up to anybody what personal religion they have as long as it is not forced on others or physically or mentally aggressive to others. Instead I want to look at the role organized religion plays in the class struggle and politics. I will concentrate my remarks on the West and Christianity.
In the US there are approximately 330,000 churches, overwhelmingly Christian of one kind or another. None of these pay any taxes. Think how much more tax revenue there would be if these outfits paid tax. But more important these 330,000 churches continually spew out and organize to prop us capitalism. They are a major organized conscious ideological prop for capitalism.
There is one of these racketeering firms currently getting publicity as the tops of it have fallen out. It is called the Trinity Broadcasting Network. It is run by a the Crouch couple. This organization were given $93 million dollars in donations in 2010. Incredible. They got these by bribery, that is promising people they would get into heaven, and blackmail, that is promising people they could keep them out of hell. neither of which exists. These people are the scum of the earth.
This outfit of the Crouches preaches what they call the "prosperity theology." This means that if you attend their churches, listen to and buy their programs and donate money, especially donate money you will become prosperous. These people are con artists on a grand scale. And they are pro-capitalist propagandists on a grand scale.
Capitalism is in a continual struggle for the consciousness of the working class. That is to convince the working class that capitalism is the only system and has to be supported. These organizations such as the so called Trinity Broadcasting Network are invaluable to capitalism in this struggle. They mobilize millions of people to support the system.
They interpret the bible to suit capitalism. The first gospel of the bible that was written said blessed are the meek as they will inherit the earth. That is the poor people will get the land. By the time the fourth gospel was written this had been changed to blessed are the poor in spirit as they will inherit the kingdom of heaven. That is the mild passive people will get their reward after death. Not much of a call to struggle against the injustices on earth in that version. The gospel had been changed from revolutionary to counter revolutionary. The rackets like the Trinity Broadcasting Network and all the major organized religious organizations naturally preach the latter version.
This is especially true of the Catholic church, this capitalist, anti women, all male dominated outfit at present presided over by the non elected ex nazi youth dictator. This outfit which in its earlier years was the church of the the landlords, of feudalism, adapted when capitalism became dominant and is now the main church of capitalism. It is very conscious about this and also ruthless in this role.
In the 1970's and 1980's when the great revolutionary movements were sweeping Latin America a wing of the Catholic church took up what was called Liberation theology. This was the idea that the church should support the poor not the rich. The Catholic church hierarchy destroyed and drove out this faction of its own organization. But in actions which were even more to be condemned the Catholic church worked directly with US imperialism to slaughter the left, the activists and the indigenous people of Latin America. We are talking about hundreds of thousands being slaughtered. We are talking about mass assassinations and about people being taken by helicopter out over the ocean and thrown off. The Catholic church were part of this. Even its bank was used to funnel money to these right wing military dictatorships.
So by all means, I am against people being forced to not pray to their personal god if they have one, but I am absolutely opposed to people keeping quiet about the role of the organized mass churches. These are agencies of capitalism, consciousness and organized to this end.
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