December 13, 2005


Gallup: Poll Finds Americans' Belief in God Remains Strong (E&P Staff, December 13, 2005, Editor & Publisher)

A new Gallup survey released today finds that four decades after the "God Is Dead" controversy was first noted, Americans retain a strong belief in a higher power. Some 94% think God exists.

Only 5% feel God "does not exist" -- and even most of them "are not sure" of that. Exactly 1% are certain there is no God.

Howard Dean calls them "the base."

Posted by Orrin Judd at December 13, 2005 1:46 PM

You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder. (James 2:19)

Posted by: Gideon at December 13, 2005 1:56 PM

"four decades after the 'God Is Dead' controversy was first noted"

Uh, hasn't been 11 or 12 decades since Nietzsche first noted it, or does Time get the credit because they have the larger subscriber base and better cover artists?

Posted by: Ed Driscoll at December 13, 2005 2:12 PM

Going to be fun reading these comments. Hope everyone has the organized religion that helps them get through the night. I think Frank Sinatra said something like that in a Playboy interview.

Posted by: oldkayaker at December 13, 2005 2:16 PM


Everyone does.

Posted by: oj at December 13, 2005 2:25 PM


I was taking a cheap potshot at Gallup--not God.

Posted by: Ed Driscoll at December 13, 2005 2:28 PM

All religions, arts and sciences are branches of the same tree. All these aspirations are directed toward ennobling man's life, lifting it from the sphere of mere physical existence and leading the individual towards freedom.

Albert Einstein

Posted by: oldkayaker at December 13, 2005 2:54 PM

Robert Duquette is not in that 1%.

Posted by: ghostcat at December 13, 2005 2:55 PM

It has come to my attention that both Nietzsche and Time magazine are dead.


Posted by: God at December 13, 2005 2:56 PM


Well, there were a few who came before Nietzsche, but he put things in the starkest terms, didn't he?


I wouldn't say organized religion gets them through - although it helps to have 'community'.

However, the guts of 'getting through' usually arise from (or depend on) the very lonely experience of being very alone, and then realizing (discovering) that God is there. Kind of like being on a mesa, just you and him.

It's a spiritual thing, with little connection to any formal church. The organized stuff comes later.

Posted by: jim hamlen at December 13, 2005 2:56 PM

Ah, yes. Al Einstein. The most overrated man of the 20th century. The Leftist Icon of all that is Noble and Pure and Good. The pacifist responsible for the atomic bomb. The man who spent most of his life coasting on a reputation he made in his 20s, like some college athlete. The man who spent his last 40 years confusing science and religion, producing nothing of value but the aforementioned bomb and a lot of platitudes.

(Hey, this trolling thing is fun!)

Posted by: Raoul Ortega at December 13, 2005 4:01 PM

OK - Frank didn't like the night. His night-time religion was booze, broads and smokes.

He certainly did it his way.

Posted by: Sandy P at December 13, 2005 4:04 PM

frank was, however, an avid model rail roader, so that should get him some props here.

Posted by: casey jones' toe at December 13, 2005 4:09 PM

ok: Psalms14:1, but we all knew.

Posted by: Lou Gots at December 13, 2005 4:18 PM

Einstein was a believer. But not a father-projection believer.

Posted by: ghostcat at December 13, 2005 4:47 PM

Yes, the One Tree.

Posted by: oj at December 13, 2005 5:04 PM

Hey... you don't like Einstein... thats your choice. But, don't knock Frank.

Posted by: oldkayaker at December 13, 2005 5:53 PM

Whatever gets you through the night. Cut out the voodo, mumbo jumbo and leave just any kind of meditation usually gets the job done nicely.

Posted by: oldkayaker at December 13, 2005 5:57 PM

A cheap hood who couldn't carry Bing's jock? What's not to knock?

Posted by: oj at December 13, 2005 6:21 PM

I think Bruno Kirby's limo driver character in Spinal Tap said it best:

"You know what the title of Sammy Davis' "Yes I Can" should have been? "Yes I Can, if Frank Sinatra Says It's Ok". Cause Frank calls the shots for all those guys.

(Kirby was also correct when he said that rock and roll was just a fad.)

Posted by: Jim in Chicago at December 13, 2005 7:00 PM

"The One Tree" -

The allusion eludes me. Stephen Donaldson's novel? Bono's lyrics? Or some entirely different shorthand for the Unified Theory of Everything?

Albert was quixotic, ya know. No mere rationalist, he.

Posted by: ghostcat at December 13, 2005 7:28 PM

Einstein was a genius physicist. Why would anyone take him seriously on any other subject? Most geniuses are very unsound everywhere but their field.

Posted by: Mikey at December 14, 2005 8:12 AM

"Robert Duquette is not in that 1%."

Thank you for making me an honorary 5 percenter, but I'm not sure that the distinction means much, if anything. It amazes me that people find the need to look beyond the immediate world for wonder and excitement, but do as you must.

I'm reminded of Robert Bly's book "Iron John". In the myth, a boy loses his golden ball, representing the loss of childhood wonder that all people experience around the age of 7 or 8. Something happens to our brains around that time, and our experiences of the world become predictable, even monotonous. We spend the rest of our lives searching for that ability to be amazed and awed by the world, or to escape to another world that can awe and amaze us. Religion, drugs, peak experiences - all are attempts to reclaim the golden ball.

Posted by: Robert Duquette at December 14, 2005 10:58 AM

Nor in the 5%.

Posted by: oj at December 14, 2005 11:23 AM