Tuesday, June 12, 2007

ONE Voice is getting a little hoarse

I don't know how they keep a straight face:

On the global scene, they tell secular governments and for-profit banking firms to just forget about money that was lent as an investment.

On the national level, they tell local churches that if you want to leave with the property you (and/or your ancestors) paid for, you have to pay them to do it. And God help you in the face of their righteous indignation should it turn out that the presbytery invested a penny in the physical property!

And we still wonder why the PCUSA isn't gaining members at a breakneck pace....


regressivepresby said...

A bit maddening, isn't it?

Doug Hagler said...

You're right. Who cares if people are starving to death? These investors need a return on their money. That's the bottom line, and always the highest priority. I'm sure that's how Jesus feels - the poor are best used as a source of profit.


As for churches leaving, I basically agree. Let the 2% or whatever that actually want to leave do so. It saves a lot of heartache and infighting. It isn't like schism is anything new to us Protestants, and property is a nasty piece of leverage to use to keep someone in community. Delete that portion of the Book of Order if necessary, but let people who want to leave...leave. If they paid for their building, its their building. If the Presbytery paid for it, then they have to buy it. Etc.

Chris said...


If you want to ask "who cares" about starving people, you'll find the answer in Art Brooks stunning exposé Who Really Cares: The Surprising Truth about Compassionate Conservatism (available at Amazon).

I have to agree with you on church property. I think you'd find that if property and pension were secured, the denomination would split and roughly half would leave (maybe even more). Polls consistently show that "evangelicals and moderate conservatives" make up 65-70% of our denomination.

Doug Hagler said...

Ha. What's a moderate conservative? Do they cheer for Hannity *and* Combs?

And if your pension doesn't matter if you leave, I think it'd be hard to make anyone stay. "No, wait, I love Presbytery meetings! Also, fighting about the Book of Order."

And I'm glad if it is the case that conservatism is growing a social conscience. You've intimated this before and I'm all for it. All that money should be doing some good. Us dirty hippies can only do so much. With conservative bucks behind our hemp couture and bleeding-heart idealism, the sky's the limit!

Doug Hagler said...

Really, I'd rather have conservatives committed to debt remission and universal health care and more concrete social justice, maybe a progressive tax system, and ending our foreign policy of bomb-first and question-never (though they'd cease to be conservative...oh well), but charity is certainly a virtue. I think you liberals out there should step it up in the charity department. You're bad for our leftist PR.

Chris said...

Your snide comment about "growing a social conscience" shows that you have not taken to heart the data found on charitable work. The libs talk about it, the conservatives do it. It must be an amazing thing to watch other people work hard for their money and then take it away, give it to the poor, and take all the credit.

Conservative values lead to debt remission and health insurance because (no surprise) they lead to job creation and work-based solutions. I'd be for a fair tax system (I'm not sure what you mean by "progressive" unless you mean steal from the rich and give to the poor).

As for "justice," how is it unjust if someone slacks off throughout their public education, has children out of wedlock, refuses to cultivate responsible work habits and ends up poor? There are three factors that, when combined, are 99% effective at keeping people out of poverty:
1) Finish your high school diploma/GED.
2) Find full-time employment.
3) Don't have children until you are married.

Conservative values which lead to social progress (i.e., they pull people out of poverty).