Monday, January 06, 2014

Francis is Driving Them Nuts

Even today we raise our hand against our brother... We have perfected our weapons, our conscience has fallen asleep, and we have sharpened our ideas to justify ourselves as if it were normal we continue to sow destruction, pain, death. Violence and war lead only to death.
Even today we raise our hand against our brother... We have perfected our weapons, our conscience has fallen asleep, and we have sharpened our ideas to justify ourselves as if it were normal we continue to sow destruction, pain, death. Violence and war lead only to death.
Even today we raise our hand against our brother... We have perfected our weapons, our conscience has fallen asleep, and we have sharpened our ideas to justify ourselves as if it were normal we continue to sow destruction, pain, death. Violence and war lead only to death.
"Even as we today raise our hand against our brother....We have perfected our weapons, our conscience has fallen asleep, and we have sharpened our ideas to justify ourselves as if it were normal we continue to sow destruction, pain, death. Violence and war only lead to death."

Pope Francis

It sure is an amusing thing to watch these Tea-partiers and their ongoing, massive FREAK OUT with respect to the philosophy of Pope Francis. Some, like noted scatterbrain, Rush Limbaugh, have gone as far as calling him a "Marxist". Sarah Palin has expressed her disapproval by saying the pope sounds "pretty liberal". What's up with that? All the pontiff is doing is passing on to his flock the teachings of Jesus of Nazareth - the Prince of Peace. How could they possibly take issue with that? Isn't that the line that a Christian would be expected to take? What gives?  

The dirty little secret is out: Jesus' teachings in the New Testament are anathema to the ideology of the right wing.  Why do you think they hardly ever quote Him? Francis is forcing all Catholics - and by extension, all Christians - to come face-to-face with the reality of what He was all about. I am not a theologian. The totality of my religious education comprises what I learned in Sunday School as a little boy and Catholic grammar school (grades six through eight). But as sparse as my instruction might be, I at least understand that Christ's whole purpose on this earth didn't involve catering to the status quo. There was a wee bit more substance to it. He was about love, and forgiving - and giving.

Jesus does not approve.

Okay, I'm gonna go out on a limb here. Call me a reckless heathen if you like but this is how I see it: 

Tax cuts for a class of people who already have more money than they know what to do with? This one is such a no-brainer that I'm embarrassed to even mention it. Jesus does not approve.

A bloated military that expends its might by roaming the world and killing a lot of people with dark skin (of which He was one by the way)? Jesus does not approve. 

Building privately owned prisons for profit and then passing more-and-more harshly punitive laws that will ensure that those prisons are packed to capacity forever? Jesus does not approve.

Placing the extreme burden of taxation on the backs of the poor and middle classes while some multi-billion-dollar corporations pay zero? Jesus does not approve. 

Passing legislation that will prevent the most vulnerable of those among us to take part in their democracy? Jesus does not approve. 

Forcing those who educate our children and serve our infrastructure to accept cruel cuts in their paychecks while the coffers of the rich and powerful runneth over? Jesus does not approve. 

A health care industry that sends people who get desperately ill spiraling into poverty? Jesus does not approve.  

A culture that labels people as "the deserving poor"? Jesus does not approve. 

A legal system that allows the financial industry to bankrupt millions of innocent people while that same system's highest legal officers admit that these criminals are too big to prosecute? Jesus does not approve.

A political party that claims to have an inside line to the Almighty Himself while consistently suffocating the lives of the meekest of us? Jesus most definitely does not approve.

Them plutocratic emperors ain't got not threads, baby!

What Pope Francis is doing is holding up a mirror - and there are many among us who are recoiling in horror at the reflection. Human society stands at the precipice of spiritual annihilation. We're either - all of us - going to care for and nurture one another, or we're going to hurdle into the abyss.

 Now if you'll excuse me I have a needle's eye and and a camel that I'm conducting and experiment with.

These are delicious times in which to be alive. They really are!

Tom Degan
Goshen, NY


Christ vs. Conservatism - A SERIOUS Conflict
from "The Rant", 21 July 2006

I wrote this little ditty way back at the beginning.


Here is a message I sent to Pope Francis''s Twitter account on December 1:

"@Pontifex: Your Holiness, you are driving the right wing in America nuts. Thank you."

Dear Lord, I love this pope!


At 12:06 PM, Blogger Dave Dubya said...

Hear, hear!

Just for perspective, the Pope is still a conservative religious leader. The American radical far Right is so wrapped in their Bubble Cult they can't comprehend a voice of compassion and moderation as anything other than "Marxist".

If Jesus were here now, the American radical Right would demand Jesus be put in Gitmo for preaching peace to the empire. They would accuse him of class warfare for demanding the rich to be humble and give to the poor. They would demonize him as a Marxist for saying "Render unto Washington that which is Washington's. We all KNOW that about them, and it irritates them to no end.

They are authoritarian, sociopathic servants of mammon, who shill for the Kochs wealth over the US Constitution's requirement for the general welfare. Can't have that, you know.

Now let's watch them blame the Black Guy and scream about Benghazi and the IRS...but refuse to answer our questions about what really happened.

And on top of all that, they have the gall to pretend they are Christians. Jesus had a word for them. Hypocrites.

At 12:33 PM, Blogger De_Bill said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At 4:25 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Excessively high temperatures" are "already" harming public health nationwide, Pres. Obama declared on Nov. 1, 2013, two months before today's assault by record low temperatures.

In his executive order on climate change, Obama warned that too much rain - and not enough rain - also dictated that executive action against climate fluctuations

At 6:32 PM, Blogger Dave Dubya said...

Right on cue. Chuckie wants to play his distraction game and blame the Black guy. Whoda thunk?

The Bubble Cult is so easy to predict.

"Winter gets cold! That's PROOF there's a conspiracy of evil climate scientists!"

Benghazi! IRS! Winter!

At 6:45 PM, Blogger Mozart1220 said...

Yeah Anonymous, "Global Warming" means it will never get cold again. And Evolution is fake because there are still apes.

Jeez, could you BE any more ignorant?

BTW, what has this got to do with Jesus and the Pope? NOTHING.

At 8:28 PM, Anonymous John said...

Dave> If Jesus were here now, the American radical Right would demand Jesus be put in Gitmo...

I guess the totalitarian state keeps getting born again. Although there has been some signs of progress; the state has moved on from crucifixion to drone assaults.

Tom, I have to say I am intrigued by this Francis. Many people don't even notice court decisions regarding NSA activity where federal judges' display outright contempt for our Constitution or much worse, the state's contempt for life that is so aptly demonstrated by the drone program. This nation is not even maintaining the facade of promoting a just society anymore. I hope Francis' flock and the rest of us wake from apathy - and that apathy might be the biggest crime of all because each of our thoughts are the first place we can live, love or wage war. If you are not going to fight for your thoughts, you are already lost...

At 1:39 AM, Blogger Unknown said...


While I respect my brothers in Christ who are Catholics (pro life as an example), I am not being forced by their Pope to do or realize anything.

Jesus as the Prince of Peace, brought to mankind through His actions on the cross and resurrection from the grave, brought Peace between a Holy sinless God and sinful man.

Jesus was about living a life, walking with God, as a forgiven sinner. He asked us to be as forgiving to others as God was to us, when we accept the sacrifice of His Son for our sins.

Jesus was against the status quo of a works religion, which was before He came to earth, was how humans felt the could become good enough to escape the wraith of being a "sinner in the hands of angry God". (Jonathan Edwards July 8th 1741) Many still hold to the hope of works salvation, hence their claim that paying more taxes is the Christian thing to do. God loves a contrite, broken sinner (PS34:18, PS51:17, IS57:15, IS66:2) not a heavy tax payer.

No where in the Bible does Jesus preach about tax cuts for the rich.

No where in the Bible does Jesus preach against private prisons or for that matter, private enterprise or profit. Some of his parables were about getting a return on investment.(Matt 25:26-29) And paying people for their work (Matt 20:15) as the employer saw fit.

No where in the Bible does Jesus address voting laws or pay cuts.

Did not come to destroy the Law (Matt5:17-20)
Did was against children not being taught about Him. (Matt 19:13)
Was against leading a child into sin. (Matt18:6-7)
Said the poor will always be with us. (Matt26:11)

And since I'm sure some one will quote Jesus saying that it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven (Matt 19:23), He also said "with God all things are possible" (Matt 19:26).

Tom, Pope Francis is not driving me nuts. What is driving me nuts is the twisting of God's word to support one political view point, while using it to attack an other political point of view. What is driving me nuts is the religion of government!

Quite simply, there is so much very more to being a Christian than what you do with your money or if you pay what others feel is a fair amount in taxes. To focus on that is putting a self imposed limit on the grace and peace that passes all understanding that God gives through his Son, Jesus Christ.

At 5:35 AM, Blogger Mozart1220 said...

WOw Chuck, you can make excuses for ignoring Jesus mesage like no one I've ever seen. You are trying to turn him into a capitalist conservative.

Nice try, but you are full of it.

At 10:44 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

Because Jesus is a conservative capitalist, right!

Back in December before school let out for Christmas break, a first-grader at Merced Elementary School in West Covina, California, brought Christmas candy canes to school that bore a Christian message attached to each candy cane so he could share them with his teacher and classmates. But when the teacher saw the Christian message, she confiscated the candy canes, ripped the Christian message from the candy canes and threw them in the garbage and told the student that “Jesus is not allow in school”. She then returned the candy canes to the student so he could share them with classmates.

At 11:05 AM, Blogger Dave Dubya said...

What is driving me nuts is the twisting of God's word to support one political view point, while using it to attack an other political point of view.

Yeah, conservatives and Republicans NEVER do that, do they? As the servants of mammon shill for the preservation and power of the Kochs wealth over the US Constitution's requirement for the general welfare.

Right? Far Right.


At 1:48 PM, Anonymous HarleyA said...

What Chuck was in some sense pointing out was that Tom was, in effect, doing the same thing that he is rightly accusing some on the “right” of. He was using Jesus’ words to tell a half-truth. You’ll get no argument from me that Republican politicians are guilty of using Christianity to their own ends – many people are. And no Christian, left or right, will perfectly administer righteousness and mercy as Jesus did. It is also true that there are “leftist” policies that would anger Him. Both left and right are composed of humans given to sin and error.

But, to take bits and pieces of the whole of Jesus’ words not necessarily out of context per se, but certainly divested of the fullness of His message, is not intellectually honest – or maybe it’s just out of sloppiness or uninformed. I don’t hold it against Tom in this case because I don’t want to assign bad motives when I don’t know the motives. If I were placing my hope and faith in mankind developing a solution to our ills via political means, I’d be angry and “ranting” as well – I’d be downright depressed and hopeless. I am encouraged that Tom at least believes in a historical Jesus and does seem to understand that He is deserving of our honor and is to be listened to. That’s a good start. But, I sense a deeper ignorance of the fullness of the Gospel and the reality of the incarnate Son of God. Having learned what he knows through a Catholic children’s catechism decades ago shouldn’t suffice for someone given to full disclosure and journalistic integrity. I’d suggest he study the Gospels (if he hasn’t) and find out what Jesus Christ is really all about.

Good example, Dave, is your assertion on Jesus preaching peace. He certainly is the Prince of Peace and he certainly does provide for a peaceful relationship between God and man where it could not exist without his atonement. BUT – did you know He also said…
“Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I have not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I have come to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. And a person's enemies will be those of his own household. Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. And whoever does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me. Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.”
– from Gospel of Matthew Ch. 10

The peace He brings is peace with God. Relationally, He knew that His exclusive truth-claims would bring vehement division on the Earth among men. And, it has. So, ultimately, one cannot choose to pick through His teachings like a smorgasbord – He doesn’t allow for that in His message. Inclusivity of opinion was not a tenet of His message.

At 2:27 PM, Blogger Dave Dubya said...

I have not come to bring peace, but a sword is not to be taken literally. Literal believers have a problem, or He was wielding an actual sword. Which is it?

What He said of a real sword, "Put up again thy sword into his place: for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword".

This has always been a problem with those who can't understand metaphor and parable.

"Render unto Caesar" was not so ambiguous.

It's good that He clarified, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself."

While Democrats have their share of wrongheadedness, fostering resentment for the poor and shilling for the servants of mammon will never lead one to these values.

At 2:28 PM, Anonymous Susie Q said...

OMG!!!! Now our little Chuckie is a theologian!

At 3:54 PM, Anonymous HarleyA said...

DD –

Of course He didn’t mean a literal sword. Anyone who reads the passage in the literal sense it was intended and adhering to the intended metaphor/simile can see that. A sword is symbolic of division. He went on to explain precisely what He meant – which is what I said. He meant His message would divide men because of the exclusivity of truth. He meant He did NOT come to preach a temporal peace in that sense. Taking a passage literally doesn’t mean taking in a wooden literal fashion – it means taking the intent literally. It has nothing to do with war. My point was “peace” needs to be carefully defined in such discussions. The fullness of His message is far more complex than how it is typically presented by people looking to gain political advantage by using Jesus – almost always.

Interesting you bring up the “render to Caesar” passage because you have missed the intent by interpreting it literally. When He said “render to Caesar” He had no political intent. He was pointing out that the coin had the image of Caesar on it – therefore, the coin was Caesar’s dominion and Caesar’s call to tax it. What He was inferring in His brilliant way was that the “imago Dei” is stamped upon all of us and we all owe everything to God. As with all of His teaching – brilliant and beautiful.

SusieQ – everyone is a theologian.

At 4:20 PM, Blogger Dave Dubya said...


We really do get the point, but, "Render unto Caesar” still means "pay your taxes", does it not? I don't see how that reflects any political intent, nor did I suggest so.

Yes, "the coin was Caesar’s dominion and Caesar’s call to tax it."

And my point was in today's US it would be "Render unto Washington...".

Not sure how that could be misunderstood.

At 4:58 PM, Anonymous HarleyA said...

Yep, I agree, pay your taxes. And I do. And I agree - be willing to share generously with the poor. And I think I do, though likley not so much as I should.

We're talking past each other.

I don't deny that Jesus' teachings have much to speak to from a moral standpoint. It would be a ridiculous notion to think otherwise. But, the charge to pay one's taxes is very much tangential to the primary, weighty point He was making about the essence of God and Man. Not to mention the fact that the charge for the citizen to pay taxes to Caesar in no way relenquishes Caesar's responsibility to administer the citizen fairly. Two-way street. Also, the analogy breaks down a bit when one tries to compare Caesar to the American government. So, it's a bit of a categorical problem.

The thrust of my point is with the typical mishandling of Jesus by political pundits of all stripes. They lose the essence of His word - the Gospel - (typically because they don't believe it) when they misuse isolated nuggets to back their own agendas.

That's why in court, we have the funny little saying "Tell the truth, THE WHOLE TRUTH, and nothing but the truth." Partial-truths can be deceiving. When men don't know the truth, though, they can't help but butcher it. I get that.

Good discussion.

At 5:20 PM, Blogger Dave Dubya said...

Also, the analogy breaks down a bit when one tries to compare Caesar to the American government.

A bit, perhaps. Coin of the realm is still coin of the realm. Taxes are still taxes, etc. Some parallels between the US and Rome stand. The US and Imperial Rome do share the role as most powerful and far reaching military states of their time.

Global finance and corporate power are taking the place of Caesar as managers and beneficiaries of empire these days. And THEY seem to win ALL the elections, as they absorb the "trickle up" wealth of their rigged system.

At 6:29 PM, Anonymous HarleyA said...

Agreed. I see the lines between the "right" and "left" today as very blurred and becoming more irrelevant. And, the real power centers are becoming more evident.

Now, what kind of Catholicism is it the Pope holds to ;)

Not a coincidence that it developed in an imperial system and took on much of the secular terminology in its governance.

I'm not a papist, so Francis' words mean little to me in the ecumenical sense.

At 6:49 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

Harley A.

You made the point I was trying to make when you said:
"no Christian, left or right, will perfectly administer righteousness and mercy as Jesus did. It is also true that there are “leftist” policies that would anger Him. Both left and right are composed of humans given to sin and error."

Then I posted the article about the public school in CA not allowing the name of Jesus to be shared on a Christmas candy cane. Public schools are not the domain of the free market place but of the government, who by this action are preventing the teachings of Jesus from being taught to children!

It is worthy to note, that the charge of
hypocrites, is being leveled against one political point of view by someone holding a different political view. It is easy to level the charge of hypocrisy if one assumes that those claiming to be Christians are perfect or share the same political views. Christians are not perfect. To equate wanting to keep more of one's income rather than pay more in taxes as being non Christian is inane. I am against one cent of my tax dollars going to Planned Parenthood. My saying so does not make me a hypocrite. All are hypocrites, just as all of us are sinners.

It is my personal belief that government has become the savior in the minds of many Americans. The fact that human secularism continues to grow in the West as a respected system of values and as a replacement for Christianity, I believe, is the driving force behind the growing reliance on government.
Anyway, that may be a subject for a different time.

At 7:29 PM, Anonymous John said...

HarleyA: SusieQ – everyone is a theologian.

Ahh, this is an interesting point. Jesus had lots of followers and immediate disciples. Jesus undoubtedly said much more than is recounted in the 4 gospels that were incorporated into the new testament. Indeed some of those words are recorded in other gospels that for whatever reasons were rejected from what has come to be known as the Bible. Everyone has their own lens they view the world through and we all have our own agendas that accompany being human.

The point I was trying to make with my earlier comment was that through a variety of mechanisms, of which the education system and the media play huge roles, the state cultivates laziness and apathy.

What Jesus' message is to me is that the cultivation of love enriches your life beyond anything else. All of the rewards that are promised are available to the extent that you can actually practice what he exemplified. Why wait until you are dead?

Anyway, I am a beginner - but I hope to get that notion more and more. I think actually putting this concept into action not only enriches your life but automatically makes you more charitable and understanding of your fellow humans and fights the apathy that the state wants to impose on us...

At 10:29 PM, Blogger Mozart1220 said...

If you want the "whole truth" here it is.

The Jesus of the Bible would be hated by the"Christian Conservatives" of today. He'd be considered a long haired, Muslim looking, Socialist.

No argument for that, because it's true.

At 11:07 PM, Anonymous James Hansen said...

I believe Conservative Christians have been severely bamboozled by Carl Rove's strategy empathizing the hot button issues of abortion and gay rights.
He forced them to ignore all the bad things done by the Cheney admin because supporting anything Liberal was condoning abortion.

Most of the problems facing this country had their origins in the years 1999-2008. We could never have had a president like Obama if Bush did not come first.

At 1:24 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

I find it ironic that Tom, a resident of NY state, would make this comment

"Placing the extreme burden of taxation on the backs of the poor and middle classes while some multi-billion-dollar corporations pay zero?"

to attract companies and business to move to NY offering of up to ten (10) years of not having to pay NY taxes.
NY seems to recognize that taxation is a deterrent to economic growth, something many of it's citizens do not agree with. If taxes are the answer to solving the problems of our country, why not take more money out of the private sector by raising taxes.

I think this fits within the definition of "hypocritical".

John, well said.

At 9:58 AM, Anonymous Bia said...

Bless his huge heart! I hope he has really good Bodyguards..he's aligned himself against the Devil incarnate!

At 10:05 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

"WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama will announce five “Promise Zones” this week as part of his effort to focus on income inequality in the lead-up to his State of the Union address.

Promise Zones are areas where the federal government provides tax incentives and grants to help communities tackle poverty. Obama first announced the initiative during last year’s State of the Union speech."

Again, government tinkers with taxes in order to promote economic growth and equality. The elephant in the room is taxation retards economic equality and growth. If that were not the case, and taxes promoted economic equality and growth, why not raise taxes? Government, other than to print devalued money, has no source of income other than what they take from those who earned the income.

The argument could be made quite successfully that after 5 years of hope and change, except for the counties surrounding Washington D.C, the entire nation should be treated as "Promise Zones".

The five "Promise Zones" are San Antonio, Texas; Philadelphia; Los Angeles; southeastern Kentucky and the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma. Draw your own conclusions.

At 10:05 AM, Anonymous HarleyA said...

“What Jesus' message is to me is that the cultivation of love enriches your life beyond anything else.”

Love of God and love of fellow man is the core theme and the goal to which scripture points. Why we cannot and do not love and how we can be made right with God and be made whole are the core of His message and His purpose.

“All of the rewards that are promised are available to the extent that you can actually practice what he exemplified.”

John, that’s where I’d say you divert from the actual teachings of scripture – and it is the most common misunderstanding. Essentially it is the works-based righteousness model that most every manmade religion constructs. If that is the case, we are doomed. When compared to the holiness and perfection of God, our works are nothing and our sins condemn us. If a person feels he is attaining anything in his own power, he has either seriously lowered the bar or he deludes himself.

This is certainly not the forum for a long, detailed discussion, but the rewards (being eternal abundant life vs. deserved punishment) are available to those who through repentance and faith in Jesus inherit a righteousness that is “not their own” and whose sinfulness is covered by the substitutionary atonement (satisfaction) of Jesus’ sacrificial work on the cross. That’s what Jesus and the whole of scripture teaches – in a nutshell – as relates to how a sinful man becomes right with a holy God. One can believe Him or not, but that is what He teaches. As C.S. Lewis says – He is either liar, lunatic, or Lord. Not a lot of middle ground with Him – He didn’t allow for it with His teachings. Many want to ignore or pass over His hard teachings. You’ll never believe the good news (Gospel) if you don’t understand the bad news.

At 9:35 AM, Anonymous James Hansen said...

Well Harley, you shut the site down after writing such a beautiful essay. It is hard to get back to political bickering after reading that!

At 10:56 AM, Blogger Dave Dubya said...

Political bickering aside, the basic truths of the recent Popes' words stands:

"It is alarming to see hotbeds of tension and conflict caused by growing instances of inequality between rich and poor, by the prevalence of a selfish and individualistic mindset which also finds expression in an unregulated financial capitalism."

"The creation of ethical structures for currency, financial and commercial markets is also fundamental and indispensable. These must be stabilized and better coordinated and controlled so as not to prove harmful to the very poor."

- Pope Benedict XVI December 28, 2012

"Just as the commandment “Thou shalt not kill” sets a clear limit in order to safeguard the value of human life, today we also have to say “thou shalt not” to an economy of exclusion and inequality. Such an economy kills. How can it be that it is not a news item when an elderly homeless person dies of exposure, but it is news when the stock market loses two points? This is a case of exclusion.

In this context, some people continue to defend trickle-down theories which assume that economic growth, encouraged by a free market, will inevitably succeed in bringing about greater justice and inclusiveness in the world. This opinion, which has never been confirmed by the facts, expresses a crude and naïve trust in the goodness of those wielding economic power and in the sacralized workings of the prevailing economic system. Meanwhile, the excluded are still waiting. To sustain a lifestyle which excludes others, or to sustain enthusiasm for that selfish ideal, a globalization of indifference has developed.

While the earnings of a minority are growing exponentially, so too is the gap separating the majority from the prosperity enjoyed by those happy few. This imbalance is the result of ideologies which defend the absolute autonomy of the marketplace and financial speculation. Consequently, they reject the right of states, charged with vigilance for the common good, to exercise any form of control. A new tyranny is thus born, invisible and often virtual, which unilaterally and relentlessly imposes its own laws and rules."

- Pope Francis 2013

Although spoken by conservative church leaders, these are not "conservative" Republican words, nor are they "liberal" Democrat words.

It is the truth. If someone can't see that, or refuses to see it, then that person is the one being political.

At 11:28 AM, Anonymous John said...

We all delude ourselves.

I suppose it would be an honor to have C.S. Lewis categorize us as a lunatics.

I don’t know about eternity - right now is the only thing I am sure about - and I could be wrong about that. What I have observed is that we do have some latitude in how we are going to think about things and to some extent we can steer our emotions. You might go on to say this impacts all aspects of your life, for example you may sleep better if you are happier and that in turn makes you healthier which makes...

Another observation is that the happiest people I’ve come across seem to be the the most loving and generous. I want to be as happy as I can - perhaps for my own selfish reasons. I’m not really sure how that impacts the equation - clearly there is more work to be done.

As far as the ‘whole of scripture’ is concerned, who could understand all of that? ...correctly? If Christianity is your chosen path, maximizing your understanding of just 'Love of God and love of fellow man is the core theme’ would be a worthy lifetime achievement. I believe someone said as much...

Good things to you brother. Over and out.

At 11:49 AM, Anonymous HarleyA said...

DD -

For the record, I do not support abusive wealth confiscation and unfair treatment of the worker. And both happen on a wide scale no doubt. Reward for being smart and working hard, yes. Oppression by the wealth and power, no. Given the ingrained relationship between "government" and "money" today, I see no hope for us in that regard really. But, you know where my hope lies.

America does not have free market capitalism today anyway - hasn't had for a long time. The "regulators" are complicit in wealth confiscation everyday. The would-be illegal practice of naked shorts is a prime example - it has destroyed value and destroyed companies for no reason other than to enrich hedge fund managers. It is allowed and winked at. Our currency, bond, and commodities markets are manipulated bigtime by the Federal Reserve and illegally by large financial houses - and it is to the benefit of the banking class and to the detriment of the average American. This will become far more evident (as I have alluded before) within the next few years - strikingly. That is why I have been critical of "ObamaCare". There may be instances where it provides an individual with a benefit. But it was an insurance-industry crafted plan, bought and paid for.

There is much agreement between us and I can agree with Francis on much of what he said.

Chuck, to your statement "Government, other than to print devalued money, has no source of income other than what they take from those who earned the income." is very true. What folks need to understand is that the former is far more taxing than the latter. They have no other way to deal with the debt than to inflate it away - and they're about to.

At 4:40 AM, Blogger Lydia said...

I love your Tweet to the Pope and have this hope in my heart that he has found this post. As self-actualized as I am sure he is, receiving a "thank you" every now and then, and reading reviews like this, would just have to feel good.

At 10:45 AM, Blogger SUMMA POLITICO said...

is a political movement in Roman Catholic theology which interprets the teachings of Jesus Christ in relation to a liberation from unjust economic, political, or social conditions. It has been described as "an interpretation of Christian faith through the poor's suffering, their struggle and hope, and a critique of society and the Catholic faith and Christianity through the eyes of the poor".[2] Detractors have called it Christianized Marxism.[3]
Although liberation theology has grown into an international and inter-denominational movement, it began as a movement within the Catholic Church in Latin America in the 1950s–1960s. Liberation theology arose principally as a moral reaction to the poverty caused by social injustice in that region. The term was coined in 1971 by the Peruvian priest Gustavo Gutiérrez, who wrote one of the movement's most famous books, A Theology of Liberation. Other noted exponents are Leonardo Boff of Brazil, Jon Sobrino of Spain, Óscar Romero of El Salvador, and Juan Luis Segundo of Uruguay.[4][5]

At 11:48 AM, Blogger Amelia Sanger said...

Well stated. The far right protected Bush, Cheney and
the GOP cronies who used their administration to loot and rob the rest of the nation for their benefit. They said NOTHING when they invaded two countries with borrowed money and they destroyed our national surplus. THEY elected the jerks who blew our economy and now they expect the poor to pay the bills their politicians created while STILL honoring the rich? OH and they call themselves CHRISTIANS? I don't think so. Like the other guy said....if Jesus came back today they would put him in Gitmo. What hypocrites.

At 4:48 PM, Anonymous Himey Coop said...

I look forward to the day when Pope Francis stops talking and backs his words by having his church sell all it wordly possessions and gives the money to the poor. The Vatican Museum art is worth billions and billions.

Do you agree with me Picasso (SUMMA POLITICO) ? Are you a painter or Sandinista by chance?

At 6:03 PM, Anonymous Thessalonians 3:10 said...

“If a man will not work, neither let him eat.”

At 6:23 PM, Anonymous Confused Conservative said...

Dear Thessalonians,

Thank you for doing so much to educate people regarding God's Law. I have learned a great deal from you, and I try to share that knowledge with as many people as I can. When someone tries to defend the homosexual lifestyle, for example, I simply remind him that Leviticus 18:22 clearly states it to be an abomination. End of debate.

I do need some advice from you, however, regarding some of the specific laws and how to best follow them.

a) When I burn a bull on the altar as a sacrifice, I know it creates a pleasing odor for the Lord (Lev 1:9). The problem is my neighbors. They claim the odor is not pleasing to them. Should I smite them?

b) I would like to sell my daughter into slavery, as sanctioned in Exodus 21:7. In this day and age, what do you think would be a fair price for her?

c) I know that I am allowed no contact with a woman while she is in her period of menstrual uncleanliness (Lev 15:19-24). The problem is, how do I tell? I have tried asking, but most women take offense.

d) Lev. 25:44 states that I may indeed possess slaves, both male and female, provided they are purchased from neighboring nations. A friend of mine claims that this applies to Mexicans, but not Canadians. Can you clarify? Why can't I own Canadians?

e) I have a neighbor who insists on working on the Sabbath. Exodus 35:2 clearly states he should be put to death. Am I morally obligated to kill him myself?

f) A friend of mine feels that even though eating shellfish is an Abomination (Lev 11:10), it is a lesser abomination than homosexuality. I don't agree. Can you settle this?

g) Lev 21:20 states that I may not approach the altar of God if I have a defect in my sight. I have to admit that I wear reading glasses. Does my vision have to be 20/20, or is there some wiggle room here?

h) Most of my male friends get their hair trimmed, including the hair around their temples, even though this is expressly forbidden by Lev 19:27. How should they die?

i) I know from Lev 11:6-8 that touching the skin of a dead pig makes me unclean, but may I still play football if I wear gloves?

j) My uncle has a farm. He violates Lev 19:19 by planting two different crops in the same field, as does his wife by wearing garments made of two different kinds of thread (cotton/polyester blend). He also tends to curse and blaspheme a lot. Is it really necessary that we go to all the trouble of getting the whole town together to stone them? (Lev 24:10-16) Couldn't we just burn them to death at a private family affair like we do with people who sleep with their in-laws? (Lev. 20:14)

I know you have studied these things extensively, so I am confident you can help.

Thank you again for reminding us that God's word is eternal and unchanging.

At 8:54 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

by Thomas Sowelln (black American)

IF THE SHARE of the black vote that goes to the Democrats ever falls to 70 percent, it may be virtually impossible for them to win the White House or Congress, because they long ago lost the white male vote and their support among other groups is eroding. Against that background, it is possible to understand Democrats’ desperate efforts to keep blacks paranoid, not only about Republicans but about American society in general.

Liberal Democrats, especially, must keep blacks fearful of racism everywhere, including in an administration whose Cabinet includes people of Chinese, Japanese, Hispanic and Jewish ancestry and two consecutive black secretaries of state. Blacks must be kept believing that their only hope lies with liberals.

Not only must the present be distorted, so must the past – and any alternative view of the future must be nipped in the bud. That is why prominent minority figures who stray from the liberal plantation must be discredited, debased and, above all, kept from becoming federal judges. [snip]

Black self-reliance would be almost as bad as blacks becoming Republicans, as far as liberal Democrats are concerned. All black progress in the past must be depicted as the result of liberal government programs, and all hope of future progress must be depicted as dependent on the same liberalism. [snip]

Despite widespread concerns expressed about the abysmal educational performances of most black schools, there is remarkably little interest in those relatively few black schools that have met or exceeded national standards.

Anyone who is serious about the advancement of blacks would want to know what is going on in those ghetto schools whose students have reading and math scores above the national average, when so many other ghetto schools are miles behind in both subjects. But virtually all the studies of such schools have been done by conservatives, while liberals have been strangely silent.

Achievement is not what liberalism is about. Victimhood and dependency are.


At 10:47 PM, Anonymous James said...

Well that copy and paste of Thomas Sowelln certainly proves he is an Uncle Tom and a moron to boot.

It would take me a very long time to list all the policies the GOP is pursuing to the detriment of minorities.
One of the GOPs dreams is to destroy the BOE union and have corps take over and pay teachers as close to minimum wage as possible. I am sure that would just be wonderful for inner city kids.

At 11:50 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is what happens if a black leaves the liberal plantation, they are called Uncle Tom. Can't have any diversity of thought on the liberal plantation.

Better step and fetch it for your liberal masters of the ghetto.

Dr Thomas Sowell received a bachelor's degree from Harvard University in 1958 and a master's degree from Columbia University in 1959. In 1968, he earned his Doctorate in Economics from the University of Chicago.

Sowell has served on the faculties of several universities, including Cornell University and University of California, Los Angeles. He has also worked for think tanks such as the Urban Institute. Since 1980, he has worked at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University.

He is a National Humanities Medal winner. He has taught economics at Howard University, Rutgers, Cornell, Brandeis University, Amherst College, and UCLA. Since 1980 he has been a Senior Fellow of the Hoover Institution at Stanford University,

Sowell has stated that he was a Marxist “during the decade of my 20s"; one of his earliest professional publications was a sympathetic examination of Marxist thought vs. Marxist-Leninist practice. His experience working as a federal government intern during the summer of 1960 caused him to reject Marxian economics in favor of free market economic theory. During his work, Sowell discovered an association between the rise of mandated minimum wages for workers in the sugar industry of Puerto Rico and the rise of unemployment in that industry. Studying the patterns led Sowell to theorize that the government employees who administered the minimum wage law cared more about their own jobs than the plight of the poor.

He witnessed and opposed the violent takeover by black Cornell students of Willard Straight Hall in 1969. Thirty years later, Sowell characterized them as "hoodlums" with "serious academic problems [and] admitted under lower academic standards", and defended the university and surrounding area from allegations of widespread racism.

Jesse Jackson graduated with a B.S. in sociology in 1964 from North Carolina A&T, then attended the Chicago Theological Seminary on a scholarship. He dropped out in 1966, three classes short of earning his master's degree, to focus full-time on the civil rights movement. He was ordained a minister in 1968, and in 2000, was awarded his Master of Divinity Degree based on his previous credits earned, plus his life experience and subsequent work.

Rev Al Sharpton graduated from Samuel J. Tilden High School in Brooklyn, and attended Brooklyn College, dropping out after two years in 1975.

Of the three listed above, who would you want you son (if you had one) to emulate?

At 6:43 AM, Blogger Jim Lynch said...

"I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ."

Mahatma Gandhi.

At 6:45 AM, Blogger Jim Lynch said...

"I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ."

Mahatma Gandhi.

At 9:58 AM, Anonymous HarleyA said...

I was wondering when that tired Ghandi quote would be trotted out.

So, I’m assuming that means you affirm Ghandi’s racism against dark-skinned people and his support of the Indian caste system?

How about this – I’m no fan of Ghandi OR his followers.

At 11:27 AM, Blogger Unknown said...



Well said.


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