He was talking about an argument made by his father when he, Rush, was a child – an argument that he apparently still finds persuasive today. It goes like this: A loving God, Rush's dad told him, would not have created us with the ability to imagine a place like heaven – or eternal life, for that matter – unless it were real. For, to create beings capable of imagining such a thing if it weren't real would simply be cruel.
(I can't help wondering if he thinks the same thing about hell.)
This is almost as bad as the argument he presents in his book The Way Things Ought to Be – and which I also once heard him make on his show – to demonstrate the reasonableness of belief in God:
“The human mind... is incapable of imagining the size of the universe, its origins, or even where it is. Although some incredibly arrogant scientists believe that they are capable of scientifically unlocking every mystery of the universe and of understanding everything in purely material terms, I believe there are certain things that the mind of man simply cannot discover or ascertain. There are certain things we were not meant to understand, cannot understand, and must accept on faith.” (pp. 153-154, italics in the original)
(I especially like that part about us not knowing where the universe is!)
All of this is funny, of course, but what isn't as funny is how Rush uses his religion to back up his political views. His belief in a creator is, he tells us, his principal reason for denying climate change: “My views on the environment are rooted in my belief in Creation... I don't believe that the earth and her ecosystem are fragile...” (p. 153)
One can certainly have a serious discussion about climate change. However, the religious approach of Rush and his followers is essentially to not even have a discussion, not even look at any evidence, because after all, we already “know” that climate change can't be true! And that's scary.