Jerry Corbaley blogs at Think the Thoughts?
Manifesto of the Ministry of Condemnation
With additional witticisms
An unofficial union of American cultural “X”ians
Our Creed. All things are governed by our Creed, our supreme authority. All ministries are designed and evaluated with the furtherance of our Creed as the goal and guiding light. All expenditures and evaluations of ministry success are compared by the measure of harmony with our Creed. All leadership is selected and evaluated according to our Creed. It is the purpose that drives us. Because we have evolved such short attention spans, we call our Creed a purpose statement, as follows:
Free speech to accuse, Right to privacy for anonymity, Immunity from consequences, and ratings, ratings, ratings.
Ratings, Ratings, Ratings, is the Goal Almighty. That the whole world is filled with YOUR glory.
1. Everything you say or do, and everything you might have said and might have done, is our business. Why it is our business is not your business.
2. Perception defines reality, and any perception we generate is therefore truth.
3. We do not need to verify facts with you, personally, for we know people like you are deceived and untrustworthy. People who take your side have been deceived by you. As a service, we will condemn them also.
4. Any anonymous statement, if in harmony with us, is therefore true and righteous.
5. Any anonymous statement, if supporting you, is from a sneak who you deceived who is lying to us. Everything is political except what the Ministry of Condemnation reveals through the court of public condemnation. True justice is found online through condemnation purification. Or at least satisfaction, which is more real to us than justice.
6. We demand that you submit to our summons, or submit a suitable representative for consumption, whenever, wherever, and as often as we wish, so that you may be cross-examined and judged guilty publicly and efficiently. We will guide you to transparency, for we see through you already.
7. You have the right to remain silent, which verifies your guilt, and fortuitously prolongs the righteous rite of condemnation.
8. You have the right to admit your guilt and so shift the ministry’s attention to the worse things you are deceptively hiding.
9. You have the right to attempt to appeal our multitudinous judgments. We will consent to re-condemn you and dispense additional accusations of guilt. We are at your service.
10. We demand the right to conclude that any statement you make confirms your guilt, and that any admission of guilt (no matter how small) indicates that you are hiding something worse. Your participation and non-participation is interpreted as affirmation of our Creed.
11. We grant you the right to testify against yourself that we may move on to other accusations against you, but this does not prevent us from re-condemning you at a later time with previous accusations or additional accusations. It is the journey that matters.
12. All discreet meetings are void henceforth.
13. All attempts to protect dignity and deflect pain, and promote modesty are hereby declared evil.
14. All confidentiality agreements are void henceforth.
15. All accountability agreements are superseded by accountability to the Ministry of Condemnation. Because we demand it. Your disagreement with our judgment will not avert our judgment. All findings and recommendations from accountability groups are to be made public for scrutiny and misunderstanding. All official findings of accountability groups are subject to purification by additional condemnation. All official findings of accountability groups that neglect sufficient condemnation require detailed condemnation of the personal lives of the individuals within the given accountability group. This entails, of course, connecting individuals with known villains who always work their evil politics through others. The art of connecting the dots is the domain of the Ministry of Condemnation and the dots form the picture we define. Trust us; we know people like you can’t see all the conspirators. We are here for YOU.
16. Additional burdens may be laid upon you without prior notice at any time. This includes anonymous letters, rumor generation and, potentially, violent personal threats. We are Ministers of Condemnation, and there is no doubt as to the leadership we display within the American cultural church. They are clearly following our lead. No one proves their loyalty to the spirit that dominates America as well as we do. We are the American way, and the truth, and the light, just as our lord, the shining one. Even the guilty admit that fact!
Knowing we are righteous, and desiring to share our opinions with others in the great American cultural church, we earnestly recommend that our members raise their hand, or stand, or whisper “yes” at the end of a prayer at any church of any affiliation. This is good news because it grants immunity from guilt feelings and grants wider access to judging and condemning others. While the Ministry of Condemnation is trans-denominational we recognize the value of congregations as fields for ministry and recruiting. Denominational affiliation has no bearing on Ministry of Condemnation effectiveness.
The Ministry of Condemnation has an unusually high view of Scripture. All Scripture of the Old and New Testaments, are inerrant and totally authoritative and relevant to today (except the parts where primitive people wrote to primitive cultures), and therefore are and will remain until the end of the world, for other people.
There are many reasons to join.
If you are not one of us, you will be condemned because you are guilty of not being one of us.
If you are one of us, you will be occasionally condemned because practice makes perfect.
Our leadership development program boasts the most passionate graduates of any field. We fly with the eagles, not walk with the turkeys. Association with us guarantees growth in bold inflammatory rhetoric, personal sarcasm, advanced mockery, clever innuendo, irreverence, cynicism, massaging facts, changing the subject, the shout-down, personal intimidation for fun and profit, self-justification, the gang-up, kicking the guilty while they are down, and tough love. Our members are heroic and dominating. For verification, just ask them. Your abilities to suspect, accuse and condemn will improve so naturally you will think you are inclined toward it. We learn to find which way the wind is blowing to discern the villain of the day; you can too!
You may be subject to appointment as a Bishop (overbear), with international appeal, if you demonstrate the ability to make everything personal. There is no point in the accurate condemnation of something if you cannot apply it to a person. Get it right, or be left.
Those who refrain from our skill set are contemptible, despicable and weak. These who are pitiful need our unstinting service. Survival of the fittest is the road to the future.
But wait, there’s more.
There are no dues to pay. We are NOT a crass organization. We do ask that you donate, by sacrifice, some guilty soul once in a while. The more public the better. Condemnation should be shared, don’t be selfish. Think of the greater good, now.
So JOIN US! You feel the pull. You’ve tasted the fruit. You’re shallow and have gotten your feet wet, now dive in with us. Our kitchen is hot and our future is hotter. Spark a forest! Burn a heretic. Come blaze with us!
Feel free to use our logo:
How to get started
Okay, you found something wrong on the internet. Your light is needed. It is worthwhile to prepare a place that is quiet where you can concentrate. Every wrong person’s text is within a broader context so you need to get to the bottom of things. What could be more symbolic and nurturing than a basement? If you don’t have one, then perhaps your mom’s basement would work. Many moms recognize their children’s gifts of criticism and are only too happy to let you stay in the basement.
Dress comfortably. Don’t wear shoes; the chair in which you type is holy ground. Just as your location adds to your concentration, your clothing can be beneficial. Since you want your verbal victories to be clean, and since bathing takes so much time, you may want to opt for enrobing yourself in terry cloth or flannel. As the chips fall where they may, the texture of your apparel will aid or hinder your ability to keep the broken shards in view.
Adopt a persona. Who do you want to be? Male or female? Doctor or Homespun Mystic? Your opinion is what matters, not the circumstance of your physical life. Don’t be selfish, this is about changing others. Most ministers of condemnation choose something innocent, because using your real name might result in an unwillingness to say the things that should be said. Further, there are too many throwbacks from primitive and unenlightened cultures who actually think folks should be held accountable for what they write. It’s like they don’t have any respect for unrestricted and unaccountable free speech. Distractions such as this can be easily avoided. Combat is often about camouflage and misdirection. This is spiritual warfare, and the lord helps those who help themselves. So help yourself to the pickings. Get a piece of somebody early, for the early bird gets the worm. Be wise as serpents.
Choose a Haunt. Some online sites are better than others. Obviously, the bigger the better. Remember, “Ratings, ratings, ratings”! The more controversial the article, the more likely you will receive the attention you deserve. Search for provocative titles. Skim the article, but don’t burn out your attention span on items of tertiary importance. Be a good steward of your time; make the most of every opportunity. Take a deep breath and click on the comment section; this is your Mecca. Your pilgrimage is at an end. Here is where you can shine like an angel of light.
Side with Someone Powerful. Some articles with provocative titles turn out to be duds. But you can help the author achieve success with a few provocative statements. Having the author of the article as an ally is valuable. If you know the author to be of the Ministry of Condemnation, then rejoice, good times are at hand. Enhance the criticism with praise. The accuracy of the praise is not important; it is the communion of choosing sides that is vibrant. If the sides are not yet clearly defined, then help it along. Recognize the value of most effective practice: the “Us versus Them” paradigm never fails. Momentum is important, do not waste time with introspection or the comment stream will leave you behind. When a dominant person arrives, they will not have time to criticize all details. The greatest of the Ministry of Condemnation make great sweeping generalities. You can help by making sure that every word of the other side is purified through the process of critical thinking. If the comments are tending in a direction you don’t approve, then go find a site where you can contribute. All novices run the risk of worry and fear over doubts about their own opinions. With effort, these concerns will fall by the wayside and your confidence in your own veracity will soar to heights you can be proud of. And you are not alone. Once you are established and properly networked within the Ministry of Condemnation, you will develop long-term allies who may be called upon to help. On rare occasions you may want to contact a half-dozen spirits more heroic/famous/righteous (all the same thing) than yourself to come and possess the direction of the comment stream. If you lack such a network, then you may start with only one. When you invite them, be sure to save them time, for they are very busy; there are so many who need their judgments. The actual article is only the jumping-off place for what is really important. No need to waste time on that. Share your perspective on the comment stream with them briefly. Hopefully they will begin with your point of skew (“Skew” is part of our jargon. “Skewer” may be used as noun or verb or as a noble title). Then watch them swing away at others because “iron sharpens iron”. They will soon know who they are messing with.
Concentrate. Family and chores can be a huge distraction. Let them know you are correcting lies on the internet! They may supply some helpful condemnations from their own lips. Don’t take the criticisms literally or personally or dwell on them. That is for the weak. You can’t make grape juice (wink, wink) unless you crush a few grapes. Keep your focus. You are in the middle of a mess that is only partly of your creation and you need to bring it to completion. Certainly the movers and shakers of the outside world read the most controversial blogs. Certainly they make their decisions based on the majority opinion of the boldest comments. Cannot every public decision be interpreted as a victory? What you are doing affects eternity. Internet justice is the new normal. If an opponent suddenly changes the subject and brings up irrelevant topics (like cyber-bullying), then that is a sure sign that they are down. You must react quickly like a man in deep water. Kick, kick, kick! If you kick hard enough the others will see that you are on top, and will give you space. In the stunned silence that follows, rehash some old condemnations until new ones come to mind. Keep your momentum!
Continue. If you don’t get your due, keep at it. Turn up the heat. Search for new venues. It is like trolling for fish, cover a lot of ground with sharp hooks. You’ll gouge something eventually. Experiment with baiting techniques. Link to a long article that gives you credence but will never be read. People, like suckers, will take your line with the hook and sinker if you give it enough time. All things come to he who baits.
Juicy Disclaimer (not to be taken seriously by members of the Ministry of Condemnation)
For entertainment purposes only. Do not do this at home. Any resemblance to any individual, living or dead, or twice dead, is all too common but not specified. It is a composite caricature of us all. Me included. Those gifted at making everything personal will find it applicable to anyone they choose. What I say the post is about is irrelevant; I am only the author, what do I know?