Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Real Christianity Watch

Susan Brooks Thistlethwaite blogs on WaPo about right wing attempts to label Obama's plan to raise $1.5 trillion in new revenue by raising taxes on millionaires and letting the Bush tax cuts expire "class warfare."  Money quote #1:
Let me be clear as I can be.  We need to understand the so-called "Christian" underpinnings of the anti-tax, anti-government, anti-the-poor, "let him die" approach to economics and public policy today as completely un-Christian, as well as un-American.  What we need to do is re-establish our national values of fairness, equality and opportunity for all, value that I believe are actually the core of the Christian faith, (as well as of other religious traditions and of humanist values).

Money quote #2:
Capitalism isn't "God's Plan," it's an economic system that runs on the human desire for more, our own self-interest.  This is not necessarily evil.  It can actually be a very productive system, but it is not beneficent.  In order for there to be good value in our economic life, capitalism needs to be regulated so it does not wreck the whole ship with unfettered greed (as happened in the banking industry starting in 2008), and it needs to be supplemented with social safety nets and tax policy to achieve an approximate (not absolute) "freedom from want" as in Franklin Roosevelt's wonderful phrase. 
Let's just dispense with the notion that those who call themselves Christians and who support Republican economic policy are really Christians.  They are charlatans, hucksters, and manipulators of public opinion serving their own self-interests.

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