He executes justice for the oppressed and gives food to the hungry. The LORD sets prisoners free, the LORD gives sight to the blind, he lifts up those who are bowed down, the LORD loves those who live justly. The LORD watches over the immigrant and sustains the fatherless and the widow, but he frustrates the ways of the wicked. -Psalm 146:7-9
Sunday, September 28, 2008
Both Democrats and Republicans Are Responsible
Seriously, this is my last post on politics..Nothing really to say, just wanted to post this for my own personal reasons..
don't forget to vote, and pray without ceasing!
"The Republican Party has engaged in a deliberate campaign of demagoguery and demonization of the poor since the days of Nixon. The poor have been pictured as being solely responsible for their own plight and government welfare programs have been accused of fostering dependency and social pathology, with little data to back up these claims and in fact, in the face of data that suggest that the opposite is true (Mollenkopf 658).
Further, the claim that the Republican welfare reformers are motivated ideologically by a worldview that holds that "limited government" is the best government (see Charles Murray's In Search of Happiness and Good Government) is belied by their continued willingness to shovel cash out the door in the form of Welfare for the Affluent and Aid to Dependent Corporations as well as their passion for tax cuts that increase deficit spending (as noted elsewhere in this paper, this converts a tax liability for the rich into a transfer payment to the rich).
Their alleged "concern" for the poor -- which is often cited as a primary reason, absent any financial considerations -- for welfare reform (e.g. see C. Murray Losing Ground) is contradicted by their refusal to consider structural issues regarding poverty (such as the issues described herein) --even those which have a foundation in classical liberal economy theory (e.g. economic regulation, urban renewal, deficit spending, and health care). Their focus is solely on the sins of the poor; there is no reflection or action upon the sins of the rich or the structures of society that oppress the poor.
This suggests that their concerns are motivated by avarice and gluttony, rather than a different vision of social justice. Their self-proclaimed "concern" for the poor is specious, self-serving, insulting, and demeaning to the poor. They are morally unprincipled louts, and it is a tragedy of historic proportions that at this critical time in the nation's history, we are cursed with such as our representatives in Congress.
Republicans have cooperated with the Democrats in extending the activities of the federal government into virtually all aspects of modern life. This has helped to create -- and is driving today -- the rapid growth of the anti-government movement, that in turn pushes the politicians into cutting poverty programs (thereby giving evidence of their "concern" for the deficit in an attempt to shift blame from the affluent to the poor for the budget deficit and to hide their party's culpability for the situation). The Republican Party is guilty of flagrant and corrupt and scandalous behavior, having been on the receiving end of billions in campaign contributions and lobbyist favors, which has been in trade for political favors received and granted. It is a situation that truly cries out to heaven for redress and justice (Shapiro 30, Toolan 7)."
"As the majority party for most of the period since the Depression, the Democrats have a grave responsibility for the many ills that afflict this nation. Democrats have made a name of themselves as the party of taxation and spending; they have not hesitated to run up a huge deficit in order to finance their pet programs. They are the party of legalized murder of unborn children.
The Democrats are as guilty of sins against the poor as the Republicans. From the beginning, their poverty programs have denied the essential dignity of the human person and have not closely connected the value of work with benefits. In conjunction with the Republicans, they have created poverty programs that are bureaucratic nightmares, managed from the top down, with little grassroots input. Their willing cooperation with the Republicans in extending the reach of the federal government into all aspects of human life, and their flagrant and open and scandalous corruption via the exchange of corporate welfare for campaign contributions and lobbyist favors, have helped create and are driving today the anti-government movement that in turn pushes the welfare abolition crusade. (The Democrats strongly opposed, for example, Reagan-era "Workfare" proposals, calling them "slave-fare", Price 225). Democratic liberals appear to have lost their original vision, and over the years have created and supported programs characterized by distant impersonal bureaucracies more interested in controlling rather than caring (Wallis 10).
They have refused to heed calls over many years (including those of the Roman Catholic Bishops of the United States) for responsible changes in the welfare and Social Security systems, and then, when faced with a "Reform" that does not ensure human dignity, which violates both subsidiarity and solidarity, and which makes things more harsh on the poor, they did not fight particularly hard against it (one would have thought, e.g., that the Democrats in Congress would have fought at least as hard against this so-called welfare reform as the racists did against the Civil Rights Act, but they didn't.)
The Democrats have been leaders in driving the churches (the Catholic Church in particular) from the public square and have fostered an absurdly rigid separation between church and state that has no real connection with the intent of the U.S. Constitution. They oppose programs like tuition vouchers that would give poor people choice in educational opportunities, and their support for abortion-on-demand has enabled the murders of millions of children, many of them from poor families. They ignore the role that microenterprise can have in helping poor people to help themselves, but they rarely see a corporate welfare check that they don't like, especially when it benefits one of their major campaign contributors. Like the Republicans, they are heartlessly exploiting the poor for their own partisan advantage (Toolan 4, 7). They are morally unprincipled louts, and it is a tragedy of historic proportions that at this critical time in the nation's history, we are cursed with such as our representatives in Congress."
Thus says the Lord: For three crimes of Israel, and for four, I will not revoke my word; because they sell the just for silver, and the poor for a pair of sandals. They trample the heads of the weak into the dust of the earth and force the lowly out of the way.
Yes, I know how many are your crimes, how grievous your sins; oppressing the just, accepting bribes, repelling the needy at the gate! Therefore the prudent one is silent at this time, for it is an evil time.
Hear the word of the Lord, O house of David! Thus says the Lord: each morning dispense justice, rescue the oppressed from the hand of the oppressor, lest my fury break out like fire which burns without being quenched because of the evil of your deeds. Jeremiah 21:11-12