“He cannot speak without lying. He listens to lies, he invents lies, he sends his friends out to lie for him, he delights in a lie, he spins lies like a juggler in a good circus, he schedules press conferences in order to have an opportunity to lie.” Douglas Wilson
Last week I called a blog post by Randy Booth a “a hit job on Natalie”; please let me explain why: Pastor Doug Wilson of Christ Church in Moscow, Idaho, scripts all messages, or communications, that proceed from his empire. We’ll see this in greater detail as we work through his various scandals, but for now I’ll simply note that he always tries to frame the narrative first, before anyone else. He does this with every scandal. It’s as predictable as gravity. When scandal hits, Mr. Wilson instantly circulates his story with a built-in excuse, which always includes a scapegoat. He frames his narrative, sometimes without regard for the facts, and adjusts it accordingly. Sometimes his story requires a little wordsmithing because of its truth deficit; other times it requires a complete overhaul. But he always concocts a narrative. And if the scandal warrants outside assistance, he calls upon Randy Booth to reinforce the point. Here are some examples, in chronological order:
- CREC Exam of Doug Wilson
In October 2004 Doug Wilson asked the moderator of the Confederation of Reformed Evangelicals (now called the Communion of Reformed Evangelical Churches) to appoint a panel of confederates to examine his profession of faith. Doug Wilson needed the CREC to give his theology a clean bill of health after the Reformed church in general became alarmed at the Federal Vision. At the time Randy Booth was the CRE moderator. He orchestrated the dog & pony show that Mr. Wilson now points to as an examination of his faith as well as an exoneration from the charge of heterodoxy. (Link: scroll to “I AFFIRM JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH ALONE.” Click the audio button; Randy Booth is running the performance.) Remember that Doug Wilson founded the CREC to legitimize his unethical activities, which includes his doctrinal novelties.
In 2006 a couple of websites popped up that did not give Doug Wilson favorable publicity, so Mr. Wilson called upon Randy Booth to help with damage control. Blog & Mablog:
Topic: Shameless Appeals
My friend Randy Booth recently preached a sermon on blogging and the cursing of Shimei. The sermon notes were really good, and I recommend you take a look at them here.
Randy is planning a series of messages at his home church on this general theme, and so after waiting an appropriate period of time (I mean, let the man preach them first), I would suggest that you all start clamoring for CMF to carry these messages.
- “Stones, Curses, and Character: shimei.com
- “Gossips and Busybodies: What the Internet Does to Others — 1 Tim. 5:13
- “Creeping into Households: What the Internet Does to Us” — 2 Tim. 3:6
- “Dark Corners and Evil Deeds: The Internet, Cowards, and Accountability” — John 3:19–20
- “The Snare of the Devil: The Internet and Evil Men” — 2 Tim. 2:23–26
This will be a really important series of messages.
Posted by Douglas Wilson — 6/30/2006 4:36:49 PM
Doug Wilson used Randy Booth to help control what people read about him. Notice that Mr. Wilson promoted the sermons even though Mr. Booth had not preached them. This is because they were tag teaming. Randy Booth ran interference for Doug Wilson, just as he did in the matter of the Federal Vision.
Now notice this: Randy Booth plagiarized the sermon notes that Doug Wilson recommended — “The sermon notes were really good” — and Mr. Booth included those notes in A Justice Primer.
- “Permanent Member” New St. Andrews College Board of Trustees
In 2012 Randy Booth earned the title “Permanent Member” of the New Saint Andrews College Board of Trustees (now called Board of Directors). Doug Wilson appointed Mr. Booth to the board to be his enforcer. “Permanent Member” means “permanent yes vote for Doug.” Mr. Booth appears on the NSA website for the first time in December 2012. NSA identified him as a Ph.D., which he is not. Neither was he “permanent” because he resigned his position in December 2015, falling on his sword for Doug Wilson, after Rachel Miller discovered boatloads of plagiarized text in A Justice Primer.
- Rogue Social Media Accounts
Someone created a CREC fan page on Facebook and someone created a CREC Twitter account. We don’t know who launched the accounts or when they launched them (my memory says the Twitter account went up in 2012). I did not get a good look at the Facebook account, but over half the tweets promoted all things Moscow — Blog & Mablog, Christ Church, Canon Press, etc. The first 30 or so tweets originated in Moscow. They divvied up the remaining tweets between Steve Wilkins’ church, Randy Booth’s blog, and miscellaneous CREC stuff. Randy Booth used both of these platforms to promote his blog post Victim vs. Victor. Mr. Booth’s blog post appeared consistent with his previous tag-team work with Doug Wilson — that is, it appeared scripted. Presumably he deleted the accounts because the CREC did not authorize them, though I am unsure why that matters.
- A Justice Primer
Doug Wilson used the serial pedophile scandal to promote A Justice Primer, a corroborative work between he and Randy Booth:
Those who believe themselves to be hep to my tricksy ways might have surmised that I orchestrated this entire recent flap about Steven Sitler because Randy Booth and I recently put out a book entitled A Justice Primer. But whether you are disposed to believe me or not, that was a total coincidence. In this book we address biblical principles for evaluating charges that are brought against someone, anyone. The book is, I believe, quite a necessary resource for good-hearted Christians everywhere — who regularly see defamatory information scrolling by in their Facebook feed. There is even a chapter entitled “Trial by Internet,” which concludes with this sage advice: “Never get into a braying contest with donkeys” (p. 160). (Douglas Wilson, The High Mountain Air of Public Calumny)
Doug Wilson wrote this about a week before he appointed Randy Booth to chair the CREC Review Committee. The snark reveals their flip approach to serial pedophilia. Their desire to exploit it for profit is revealing as well.
- CREC Review Committee
In October 2015 Doug Wilson informed the Christ Church heads-of-households that he appointed the CREC Review Committee, which included Randy Booth as the chairman:
Uh, in the middle of this controversy, the session of Christ Church invited the presiding ministers of the CREC — there are seven presbyteries in the CREC, I’m the presiding minister of the whole CREC, Randy Booth in Nacogdoches, Texas, is the pro tem presiding minister — um, our session invited the presiding ministers of the CREC to come in and conduct a review of our counseling of sexual abuse cases, etc., not excluding these two cases. So, um, a couple of weeks ago, ten days ago, we shipped to all the separate presiding ministers and to Randy a notebook, um, a Sitler notebook and a Greenfield–Wight notebook full of court documents, counseling records, etc., uh, they’ve got those, uh. Two of the committee members are going to be in town here in Moscow next week, to interview people involved, to interview the session, to conduct a thorough review. So we’re in the middle of that and I’ve recused — since I’m the presiding minister and pastor of Christ Church I’ve recused myself from that process. Randy Booth is the chairman of that committee. That review is going on as we speak and we hope to have a report, a report — recommendations — back from them by the end of the year. So one of the things you can say to friends is, “A review’s in process, and we will prayerfully consider whatever they have to say. And we have given them carte blanche to everything we have.” (Shubin Report, page 216)
Douglas Wilson instructed Randy Booth to finish the review “by the end of the year” (2015), but Rachel Miller’s discovery pinched that deadline and Randy Booth took a bullet for his tag-teammate by owning all responsibility for the plagiarism.
We’ll see several more examples of Randy Booth tag-teaming with Doug Wilson as we consider Mr. Wilson’s various scandals, but these should suffice to make the point: Randy Booth is Doug Wilson’s handheld puppet who does Mr. Wilson’s bidding at the snap of a finger. He has held that position for at least 12 years. He covers for Mr. Wilson according to an apparent script, which is why I believe Randy Booth’s blog post was a coordinated hit job. In this Mr. Booth is a microcosm of the CREC: Doug Wilson uses him to advance his personal agenda. And as long as Randy Booth remains loyal, Doug Wilson will protect him from denominational accountability.