The Ryan Budget is unChristian, and Why You Shouldn't Care

The church should worry less about politics and more about saving money to support the poor — their numbers could soon increase dramatically.

In a largely symbolic gesture, the US House of Representatives passed the Paul Ryan budget a few weeks back. 

Much to the glee of corporate America, the Ryan budget includes lots of tax breaks for the business sector and the wealthy while simultaneously delivering a swift kick-in-the-nuts to the jobless, the working poor, the soon-to-be working poor, disabled persons and the elderly.

While proponents have hailed Wisconsin's own Paul Ryan as brave for the tough love in his budget, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) apparently disagree. 

In the past 6 weeks they have sent a four letters to various House and Senate Committees sharply criticizing the Ryan budget for its cuts to programs that help the poor such as food stamps and child tax credits for illegal immigrants.

“Cuts to nutrition programs such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) will hurt hungry children, poor families, vulnerable seniors and workers who cannot find employment. These cuts are unjustified and wrong.”

Not to be undone, Ryan "respectfully disagreed" with the Bishops, doubling down on his plan to fund tax cuts and maintain military spending on the backs of the poor, weak and/or elderly. 

Jesus — King of Entitlement 

Unlike some in the GOP who are disgusted by the notion of keeping of church and state separate, Ryan feels pretty comfortable with straying from biblical teachings — at least when it comes to things that affect his budget. 

By taking a position opposite of that to the USCCB, Ryan is arguing against the teachings of Jesus and accepting the amoral nature of the budget and its underlying ideology.

And I guess that makes sense. With his generosity, good will toward men and a habit of delivering free health care, Jesus would likely have been opposed to many of the provisions in the Budget.

If Jesus had not risen from the dead on Easter Sunday, I’m sure the the Ryan budget would have him spinning in his catacomb. 

Separate This!

But to be honest, when it comes to the federal budget or anything else related to our system of governance, who cares how Jesus might have felt?

Who cares if we offend the sensibilities of a bunch of church officials who have worked to remain outside boundaries of government for — literally — centuries?

America should continually strive for separation of church and state as guaranteed in the Constitution and we shouldn’t let media outlets, PR firms, political operatives or political action committees — both on the left and the right — manufacture an issue that should be irrelevant. 

Unfortunately, we failed to separate church and state during the and we are failing again when it comes to the Ryan budget. 

Lay Your Cards on the Table

So let’s stop pretending that the Ryan budget is somehow born out of the Congressman’s Catholic belief system.

It is a raping of the social safety net predicated on the false notion that the poor should help themselves and that tax cuts for the wealthy and for corporations create jobs.

It is an extension of the GOP ideology that in America, it’s every man for himself and for every corporation, a D.C. lobbyist.

No community, no brotherhood and certainly no faith to tie us together for the common good of mankind.

In fact, religion has no place whatsoever in what passes for law making in Washington, D.C. 

The churches should just quietly take their tax-free charitable income and use it to expand their own safety nets.

Lord knows a lot more people will be relying on the church for food and shelter if the GOP sweep the House, Senate and White House this Fall and start turning bills like the Ryan budget into law.

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J. B. Schmidt April 22, 2012 at 03:39 AM
@Randy And the success of our public education system should deter anyone from wanting the government controlling your healthcare.
Randy1949 April 22, 2012 at 02:46 PM
@J.B. Schmidt -- And a large percentage of the population are in favor of school prayer as long as it's Christian prayer. Popular doesn't always equal constitutional. The decline in quality of public education has many causes, but it is not the fact that it is run by the government. The main difference between my youth and now is that parents are no longer doing their job in preparing their children to learn or reinforcing at home what is learned in school. I don't fault them, because they're too busy doing their other jobs -- making a living.
J. B. Schmidt April 22, 2012 at 08:06 PM
@Randy It was Lyle who said, "if we determine that healthcare is for the benefit of all, then it is constitutional". Why then is majority rule not also in place for voter ID and prayer in school? Or is it simply liberals wanting what they want regardless of the barriers and prohibiting what they don't want regardless of actual constitutionality? The governments involvement in school and the desire to establish themselves as pseudo-parents is what has caused parents themselves to back off (it takes a village). I sight the demand that school must teach sex and then couple it with your statement about how countries when they become dependent stop doing things for themselves, as proof of concept. Kids can get breakfast, lunch and possibly dinner at school. The government sets standards for learning and then lowers standards when they can't be met. They don't demand parent involvement, but blame the lifestyles or economic background. Its not about students in the public education sector it is about making sure you get the state/federal funding.
Randy1949 April 22, 2012 at 08:17 PM
@J.B. Schmidt -- That was a non sequitur, Majority rule has nothing to do with general welfare. You'd be singing quite a different tune about prayer in schools if the majority were Muslim and the prayers were said facing Mecca. Everyone needs healthcare and education regardless of their religion or political views. I get it -- you're fine with a system under which a necessity of life can be priced for private profit to the point where it's beyond the means of a large segment of the population.
BobMKE April 22, 2012 at 09:12 PM
Lao Tzu: Father of Taoism Lao Tzu (570-490 BC). Why are people starving? Because the rulers eat up the money in taxes. Therefore the people are starving. Why are the people rebellious? Because the rulers interfere too much. Therefore they are rebellious. Why do people think so little of death? Because the rulers demand too much of life. Therefore the people take life lightly. Having to live on, one knows better than to value life too much. “If you do not change direction, you may end up where you are heading.” “When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be” “One who is too insistent on his own views, finds few to agree with him.”


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