Sport of Kings (2004)
As flies to wanton boys are we to the gods;
They kill us for their sport.
--Shakespeare, King Lear
Wikipedia on the "divine right of kings":
The Divine Right of Kings is a European political and religious doctrine of political absolutism. Such doctrines are largely, though not exclusively, associated with the mediæval and ancien régime eras, based on contemporary Christian belief that a monarch owed his rule to the will of God, not to the will of his subjects, parliament, the aristocracy or any other competing authority. This doctrine continued with the claim that any attempt to depose a monarch or to restrict his powers ran contrary to the will of God.
The concept of Divine Right of Kings is only one manifestation of a much broader concept of "royal God-given rights," which simply says that "the right to rule is anointed by god(s)" which is found in other cultures. Unlike the Chinese concept of the Mandate of Heaven which legitimized the overthrow of an oppressive or incompetent monarch, a European king could not lose the Divine Right by misrule, at least according to most authors. Thomas Aquinas accepted the overthrow of a king and even regicide when the laws of the king are untenably unjust, however, and towards the end of the Middle Ages many philosophers such as Nicholas of Cusa and Francisco Suarez propounded similar theories.
From The Observer, 11-2-2003:
President George W. Bush stood before a cheering crowd at a Dallas Christian youth centre last week, and told them about being "born again" as a Christian.
Behind Bush were two banners. "King of Kings" proclaimed one. "Lord of Lords" said the other.
The book [The Faith of George W. Bush by Stephen Mansfield] also shows that in the lead-up to announcing his candidacy for the presidency, Bush told a Texan evangelist that he had had a premonition of some form of national disaster happening. Bush said to James Robinson: "I feel like God wants me to run for President. I can't explain it, but I sense my country is going to need me."
From Political Wire, Quote of the Day, 7-16-2004:
"I trust God speaks through me. Without that, I couldn’t do my job."
-- President Bush, quoted in the Lancaster New Era, during a private meeting with an Amish group.
George Bush has claimed he was on a mission from God when he launched the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq, according to a senior Palestinian politician in an interview to be broadcast by the BBC later this month.
Mr. Bush revealed the extent of his religious fervour when he met a Palestinian delegation during the Israeli-Palestinian summit at the Egpytian resort of Sharm el-Sheikh, four months after the US-led invasion of Iraq in 2003.
One of the delegates, Nabil Shaath, who was Palestinian foreign minister at the time, said: "President Bush said to all of us: 'I am driven with a mission from God'. God would tell me, 'George go and fight these terrorists in Afghanistan'. And I did. And then God would tell me 'George, go and end the tyranny in Iraq'. And I did."
Mr. Bush went on: "And now, again, I feel God's words coming to me, 'Go get the Palestinians their state and get the Israelis their security, and get peace in the Middle East'. And, by God, I'm gonna do it."
God would tell me, "George, go and start a first-strike war based on lies that will kill thousands and cost billions." And I did.
[Photograph from Basetree]
And, finally, from United for Peace
Chickenhawks like Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz and the rest love to wrap themselves up in the flag and call our troops heroes at every public relations opportunity. Off stage, however, it is probably too much to assume that they even bother to sneer contumeliously at these foolish hoi polloi, these cannon fodder for the sport of kings.
And so Bush kills us -- our hopes, our principles, our legacies, and our loved ones -- for his sport. Daily.
But don't have a sacred cow, man. Just chill. It's all God's will.