Wow--it's a territorial arglebargle of regional qualms right here in the blogosphere.
All the bloggity biggities are consumed with the propriety, meaning and etymology of the term "Christianist": Glenn Reynolds, Ann Althouse, Atrios, Andrew Sullivan and presumably many others. The original idea under discussion has been lost, and what is being posted now is a discussion about the discussion.
The two questions that ought to be under discussion are 1) what does the term "Christianist" mean? and 2) is it an effective frame for liberals to employ?
I take a Christianist to be a person who believes
a) that Christian dogma and biblical injunctions should form the intellectual basis of our laws and government;
b) that the United States is or ought to be a nation based on Christian dogma and biblical injunctions; and
c) that people who are themselves Christianists (or at the very least, Christians) should be our leaders.
If you replace "Christian" with "Islamic" and replace "biblical" with "koranic," you have what I think is the commonly understood definition of an Islamist. Thus this definition seems symmetrical and fair.
As to whether the term is useful in framing the choice between liberal, secular society and conservative, religious society, the answer is clearly yes--precisely because of its similarity to "Islamist." The idea that our country should be run along lines parallel to Iran or Taliban-era Afghanistan is not going to get much traction in the U.S. of A. The term is effective, then, in illuminating what lies at the bottom of the slippery slope of Christian conservativism. Let's use it.