Saturday, July 23, 2005

Progressive Christians: Part II, Economic Justice

I read back over my post from yesterday. I degenerated a bit into a rant, which I did not intend to do. As you can probably tell, I have pretty strong feelings about the abortion issue. I'll stay away from that subject in this post.
What I want to do is take the tenets of the Christian Alliance for Progress one at a time. Today's subject will be economic justice. Click the link to read their position. The following is boldfaced at the top of the page:

The Jesus of the Gospels Calls Us to Good Stewardship, Justice, and Care for "the Least of These." We Call on Our Nation's Leaders to Seek Economic Justice in the Management of Our Nation's Wealth.

Care for the least of these peppers the entire site. The least of the least of these is the unborn. I had better steer clear of that subject for the moment, lest I start ranting.

Certainly Jesus calls us to Justice and good stewardship, I'm not arguing that point. But let's be fair: Jesus did not immesh Himself into politics enough to really even draw a governmental inference in either of these two subjects. Jesus calls us to personally do justice. He calls us into personal good stewardship. Certainly it is laudable to seek both at the government level, but let's see just what they are talking about, shall we?

In his sermons and in his parables, Jesus teaches that poverty can certainly be an effective weapon of mass destruction.

Where does Jesus say or teach this? Where does He even infer it? I heard on a show recently that there are around 27 million people in the world that are forcibly enslaved. Many are young girls forced into prostitution. Many more still are enslaved at the hands of muslims. These unfortunate souls are not the subjects of the Christian Alliance for Progress. Instead, the CAfP rails at the injustice shown the children, aged, and poor in America. A homeless beggar on an American street corner can in one day make more money than an oppressed person in Zimbabwe makes in an entire year. Certainly things in America are not perfect, but I'll take the enconomics here over the comparisons every time.

They continue:

Today, the future of our "little ones," whom Jesus so loved, is mortgaged by government debts that are increasing daily. As of this writing, every newborn American infant owes $20,000 in public debt when they draw their first breath. Such dismal stewardship dissipates the birthright of our "little ones."

Aghhh, the first Democratic talking point. I don't think the Left really believes in debt reduction, but it's a drum that they can beat that resonates with a lot of folks, including, in fact, me. I don't like our nation being debt. I don't like myself being in debt either. So a message from the blogoshpere to Democrats and Republicans alike: Quit spending so cotton-pickin' much!

But notice, fair reader, the Democrat technique in the above paragraph of "do it for the children". Whenever the Left wants to force some socialist program down my throat, they do so in the name of the children. So the above paragraph rings alarm bells. They continue:

Tax breaks for the richest underpin this ever-growing public debt. To preserve these tax cuts, public investment in education, health care, and housing is labeled "wasteful" and reduced or eliminated. So "the least of these" - children, the aged, the poor - are asked to bear the burden of controlling the public debt. This is an injustice. It is unfair, unchristian, and un-American.

Not only is the above CAfP quote a Democratic talking point, but it is also an outright lie. Show me the decrease in funding to public education. Show me the decreases in funding for health care, housing, or any other freaking thing for that matter! Why are we in debt? Because we spend so much money on do-gooder social programs that don't work and never have, that's why! And these guys want to spend more? Oh good grief!

Those tax breaks that so stick in the Left's craw really really helped me and my family. We are by no means rich. But when we got that check from Uncle Sam, we were struggling to make ends meet. Getting some of MY money back really helped. So bug off liberals, and thank you Dubya!

They go on to say:

On the national level, increasing public debt is the public policy. At the same time, our leaders have enacted "bankruptcy reform" that takes a hard and punitive approach to those who have suffered financial misfortune. The vast majority of personal bankruptcies are the result of catastrophic medical expenses, job loss, or divorce. We consider Jesus' parable of the slave who was forgiven a large debt and then refused to forgive a small debt owed to him by another. In light of that teaching, a punitive approach to the burden of indebtedness is an injustice and is also a scandalous hypocrisy.

This point I happen to agree with, although not necessarily with the way they said it. Bankruptcy reform was a multi-billion dollar gift to the credit card companies that was neither needed nor deserved. Credit card companies are by and large crooks. The only way to get justice in this area is to not do business with them at all!

They finish up:

Honoring Jesus' compassion for the poor and the powerless, we call for a tax system and spending priorities that are grounded in fairness and justice and we call for fiscal stewardship that fosters prosperity and opportunity for all Americans.

See, I can agree with this statement. So we actually agree on some things. Let's get rid of the income tax entirely and replace it with a national sales tax. Let's get rid of the IRS and all laws that foster public policy through punitive taxation. Let's operate on a balanced budget. Let's get the Federal Government out of education entirely. Let's get the Federal Government out of welfare entirely; give it back to the churches where it belongs.

If we got rid of welfare at the Federal level and put the responsibility back on the churches and on individuals where it belongs, would YOU CAfP put your money where your mouth is? My church would and does, would yours? Would your organization?

No it would not. What you lefties want to do is TAKE my money, not yours, and give it to the poor. What moral authority do you have to FORCE me to give to the poor? None. What you advocate is forcing your morality on me, the same as you accuse the Religious Right of attempting to do to you.

I don't care one whit about forcing my beliefs on you. It is YOU that are forcing your socialistic beliefs on me and have been all of my life.

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