Religion before Bush was given a free ride. People played the game. Recovering Catholics were everywhere and cult fanatics were indulged with humor. It was like having an eccentric and frequently toxic older relative in the human family who everyone was tactfully waiting to die.
Science has been taken far more seriously than religion by the cutting edge of human civilization for the last few hundred years.
But then along came an Armageddon death-wishing president and his intellectually challenged army of Muslim haters. And lo! Another "Crusade".
It has always been tacitly understood that genuinely spiritual people are religious in name only. They may "go to church" and even send their kids to religious schools, but they understand deeply and passionately that religion is for children and authentic spirituality is for grown ups.
These people are always kind (not war obsessed), intelligent (not Bush-brained), and sane in the solid, existential sense of the word.
So for true spirituality, institutionalized religion has always been a rather meaningless side show; something which once may have had civilizing value, but only for as long as people trusted arrogant social authority more than then own hearts, intelligence, and intuitions.
Indeed, this was the essence teaching of Jesus Christ (so quickly lost by the cassock folk). Listen to your heart because your heart "is" Jesus.
So for centuries, Christianity (to take that as one example) carried around the dead weight of crushingly expensive institutions, the neurotic theologizing of celibate (or intensely repressed) men, and psychotically self righteous worshippers of violence. After all, the history of Christianity is chiefly the history of war after war after war.
And here we go again. Nutcase religious fanatics are pushing for World War 3. The Middle East is now the springboard into civilization-death for Homo duhians who actually think the world is going to go boom in the next week or two.
However, THIS time, the religioso war mongers and mass murderers are openly seen as being grounded in infantile religious cults. It's one thing to engineer the death of Mother Nature and the human species if you're very far behind the scenes, but if you're right up there on network news proving to the planet that institutionalized religion is fundamentally blood thirsty and stupid, your survival status is in question.
The moral of all this is that Bush's intimate association with religious fanatics and the cause and effect between war and religious hate machines may mark the beginning of the end of institutionalized religion.
Religion, in short, is turning out to be a suicidal luxury the human condition can no longer afford.