Mr. Cope's Cave: The After-Pat 

I must start by saying I have heard nothing worrisome about Pat Robertson's health. He seems to be perfectly hale and well, and I am privy to no information to the contrary.

But hey, he is 85 years old. According to the World Health Organization, the average life expectancy for the American male is in the neighborhood of 76, so Pat is definitely on the slippery slope of the curve. It's obvious to me that we need to give some thought to the inevitable, and beyond that, who could possibly replace him as the nation's premier bat-shit crazy interpreter of how God gets back at us when He's pissed.

Think about it: In the aftermaths of future disasters—e.g., hurricanes, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, floods, droughts, even slumps in the stock market—how will we know if those coming catastrophes won't really be some sort of social commentary from a very miffed Yahweh (hash-tag: #handsofanangrygod) without Pat (or someone as bat-shit crazy as Pat) telling us so?

Without Pat, we might make the mistake of thinking those destructive events have to do with something as un-divine as tectonic plates, deviating ocean temperatures or atmospheric conditions. Without Pat (or someone as bat-shit crazy as Pat), how would we regular, non-bat-shit crazy people make the connection that the next storm to blast the bejeesus out of some Gulf Coast city came because somewhere, in another city at another time, someone threw a gay pride parade? Or that a drought in California is because women are allowed to use birth control? Or that Mount St. Helens blowing its top again—God forbid—is God's comment on evolution being taught in public schools?

It's like this latest revelation from Pat, isn't it?... where he made clear (the same day it happened!) that the big drop in the stock market Monday was God's way of Tweeting that we either stop funding Planned Parenthood or He'll send the Dow into negative territory. Yes... yes... yes!... we should have been able to see that ourselves. It is soooooo obvious, now that Pat has explained it to us.

But noooooo!... we are so caught up in our humanism-inspired day-to-day lives... our going to work at those secular jobs... our Godless forgetting to think about the Ends Times all the time... that we neglect our duty to regularly check our mail for those texts from The Almighty.

That's where Pat has served us so well. He's like the smoke detector on the ceiling over our kitchen range, shrieking out God's own threats whenever our culture is cooking up something sinful. He's like the BEEP... BEEP... BEEP... of a garbage truck backing up, warning that if we don't stop ignoring God's Oh-No-You-Din't's!, we will get smashed like a raccoon on an L.A. freeway. He's like John the Baptist—only with a nice suit, a cable network of his own and the ear of a lot of wannabe Herods.

So we wouldn't want to be caught in a world without Pat (or someone as bat-shit crazy as Pat), would we? I know I don't. Why, just this morning, I was sitting around, watching the Dow Jones fluctuate like a bad burrito in a sensitive stomach, and suddenly it hit me! I wouldn't have the slightest idea of why this is happening, without Pat Robertson warning us how it's all just another one of those tantrums God throws when He doesn't getteth His way. 

I was so grateful, I immediately switched off CNBC and went to work on this blog.

Sadly, time's running out on Pat. Is there a bat-shit crazy son in the wings, perchance? An heir apparent, along the lines of that asswipe who inherited Billy Graham's herd? I don't know. I've never heard Pat talk about his family—not that I ever listen to Pat talk about anything—but even if he's got some up-and-coming PTL-ers back home, it's hard for me to imagine any son would want to take over where Pat Robertson will leave off.

But I imagine if the money's good enough.... right?

Maybe I shouldn't worry so much that Pat's shoes won't be filled when he's gone. It's possible, even probable, that there are dozens... maybe hundreds... of Pat-like preachers, just itching for a shot at a cable show of their own. So keep your ear to the bat-shit crazy circuit. If you hear of anyone claiming that... oh, say... tornadoes, for instance, are how the Lord expresses His disapproval of pornography... or that the next bear market is what He thinks of feminism, we may have our man. 
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