If you live in Seattle, you’re probably at least somewhat familiar with the antics of uber-douche “spiritual leader” Mark Driscoll, as his over the top douchebaggery is pretty much impossible to ignore around here. For those not in the know, he’s become rather famous by marketing a supposedly hip brand of Christianity (Christian rock can totally be a part of a church service dude!) to a younger demographic.
The problem is that his hip new faith embraces the same misogynist homophobia that most other conservative parishes in the Bible Belt embrace wholeheartedly. Women are not allowed to be a part of the clergy and are continually lectured in regards to the importance of submitting to their husband’s will. Being gay or getting an abortion will land you in hell. In fact, one of the weird things about Driscoll is that he somehow claims to know EXACTLY what God allows and doesn’t allow sexually. Right down to the letter (read more here). If you’ve never read that link, I highly recommend perusing it but I can sum up the gist for you in one sentence: only heterosexual sex between married people is acceptable in God’s eyes. What I’ve always found interesting about this fatty is that he never seems to explain how he gained access to this sacred sexual knowledge. Shit’s not in the Bible.
The guy’s a magnet for controversy by his own intentions, but this transgression is particularly heinous. That’s right, King Douche of the Douche Brigade paid over 200 grand in church money to get his book on the New York Times bestseller list…for one week (read the whole article here).
“The report claims that Mars Hill paid for 11,000 books at the tune of between $18.62 and $20.70 each, adding up to a total of $123,600 for books bought by individuals and $93,100 for books bought in bulk. Despite the church saying that the “true cost” was “much less,” the actual amount was not revealed in Mars Hill’s response.
“The purpose of this instruction appears to be a way to outsmart systems put in place by The New York Times and other list compilers to prevent authors from buying their way onto best-seller lists,”World initially reported. “Result Source apparently uses other techniques to work around the safeguards of the best-seller lists.”
Good God. There are so many things wrong with this I don’t even know where to start. First off, this is a man claiming to be a spiritual leader who is so obsessed with worldly fame that rather than spending his paritioner’s money to help the poor (what the biblical Jesus would do) he instead spent it just so he could put the title “New York Times Best Selling Author” on his next book jacket. That’s a lot of fucking scratch to attain that title on a technicality. Also, that’s some pretty satanic shit. I give it an Occult rating of five out of five upside down pentagrams, but what’s even creepier is how he went about doing this i.e. by hiring a firm to buy his own books. Of course, we should know that there are firms out there that you can pay for services like this (just like you should know that half the shit trending on Twitter or covered on Pitchfork/Noisey were bought and paid for in some manner), but seeing the way this scam actually works is beyond unnerving. So, you basically give a company a ton of money to buy your own books and create an elaborate subterfuge to make it look like it’s not you buying them. Soooo skeeezy, and I love the way his church defends his actions after he got caught: “It’s not uncommon or illegal”. I’m fairly sure that’s exactly what the money changers told Christ when he thrashed their temple. Way to take the moral high ground there dickbag.
Ultimately though, every time I get annoyed with Driscoll I have to remind myself that there are actually several other megachurches in my area that are just as successful and actually often even more socially regressive than his Mars Hill parish. I just can’t even name them because they’re not media whores on the level that he is. Even in the land of legal weed and gay marriage (also the most corrupt tax code in the country, no seriously) this madness is so entrenched into the very fiber of our society it’s unavoidable. Well, I suppose that’s why my unique brand of psychedelic Occultism is going to become increasingly important in the coming Aeon. Not mentioned is whether or not he’ll actually have the audacity to put “New York Times Best Sellling Author” on his follow up, but I’m guessing yes. Just seems to be the way this asshole rolls.
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