Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Leviticus 19:1-2, 9-18

Epiphany 7 - Year A

Leviticus 19:1-2, 9-18

Those of you in Wisconsin know the new governor is playing games with the jobs of public workers. Threats are made to jobs themselves, wages, benefits. Threats are made to bring in the National Guard.

It is difficult to read this passage and then face ideologues whose sense of economic realities is as small as their compassion.

Paul Krugman in yesterday’s New York Times speaking of national politics disguised as economics also describes our state political environment.

Which brings me back to the Republican dilemma. The new House majority promised to deliver $100 billion in spending cuts — and its members face the prospect of Tea Party primary challenges if they fail to deliver big cuts. Yet the public opposes cuts in programs it likes — and it likes almost everything. What's a politician to do?

The answer, once you think about it, is obvious: sacrifice the future. Focus the cuts on programs whose benefits aren't immediate; basically, eat America's seed corn. There will be a huge price to pay, eventually — but for now, you can keep the base happy.

Paul calls this "Eating the Future" and ends his column, "And so they had to produce something like Friday's proposal, a plan that would save remarkably little money but would do a remarkably large amount of harm."

Do you hear in this that there is nothing left for the gleaners, for the poor, the alien? Do you hear the defrauding, slandering, and profiting from the blood, pain, loss of your neighbor?

We have here a huge grudge borne against Neighbor. We have here a denial of community. We have here a false idol of Market.

And so the people do as G*D does, rise in opposition to theft of common-wealth. Demonstrations Today and Tomorrow!

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