The Church’s newsroom blog just put up a post here to address this Idaho political candidate‘s nutjobbery, which centers around the White Horse Prophecy of the constitution hanging by a thread, and the Elders of the Church (perhaps led by Mitt Romney or David Archuleta) somehow coming to the rescue of our constitutional system of government.

I would also point out that in Dallin H. Oaks’ landmark 1994 talk Our Strengths Can Become Our Downfall, Elder Oaks singled out people’s obsession with the U.S. Constitution as being an annoying, possibly dangerous, gospel hobby:

My first example [of a personal strength becoming a weakness] concerns Satan’s efforts to corrupt a person who has an unusual commitment to one particular doctrine or commandment of the gospel of Jesus Christ. This could be an unusual talent for family history work, an extraordinary commitment to constitutional government, a special talent in the acquisition of knowledge, or any other special talent or commitment.

Elder Boyd K. Packer of the Quorum of the Twelve has likened the fulness of the gospel to a piano keyboard. He has told us that a person could be “attracted by a single key,” such as a doctrine he or she wants to hear “played over and over again. … Some members of the Church who should know better pick out a hobby key or two and tap them incessantly, to the irritation of those around them. They can dull their own spiritual sensitivities. They lose track that there is a fulness of the gospel … [which they reject] in preference to a favorite note. This becomes exaggerated and distorted, leading them away into apostasy” (Ensign, Dec. 1971, p. 42).

In any case, I first learned of the unreliability of the White Horse Prophecy at BYU, where one of my religion teachers deflated the class with the news that this is not a reliable prophecy by any measure.  In one of my previous posts a while back, I argued that doctrinal reliability can be more or less quantified using a spreadsheet, so here is the White Horse Prophecy by the numbers:

The White Horse Prophecy
Weight Score Weighted Score Possible %
Has not been disavowed or downplayed by the Church 25 0 0 250 0
Given in official forum/media (Conference, Ensign, etc.) 20 0 0 200 0
Current (past 30 years) or repeated recently 15 0 0 150 0
Is not plainly refuted by science 15 10 150 150 100
Recognizes the humanity of others 12 10 120 120 100
Scriptural 5 0 0 50 0
Does not conflict with other reliable teachings 5 10 50 50 100
Does not have any gaping logical or historical holes 3 0 0 30 0
Totals 100 320 1000 32.0%

32% reliability is not solid ground for doctrine, but in the world of LDS political nutjobbery, I suppose it’s sufficiently solid ground upon which to build a political campaign. Fortunately for the people of Idaho, according to the Statesman article cited above,

Rammell has twice been defeated in runs for the Legislature in Eastern Idaho. In 2008, he won 5.4 percent of the vote as an independent candidate for the U.S. Senate, a race won by GOP Sen. Jim Risch.