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Preachers, politicians spend too much while poor suffers

POSTED: August 1, 2011 1:00 a.m.

The American middle class is no match for wealthy politicians and wealthy preachers. When it comes to money, they will outsmart and outmaneuver the middle class every time.

We're in the midst of the largest upward transfer of wealth in American history. Not only will our middle class children remain saddled with future debt, the middle class will pay more and more of the current interest on it.

Maybe not through income taxes, which are the lowest in 50 years, but through a myriad of other taxes that keep going up (sales, property, utilities, gasoline, fines, fees, licenses, payroll, etc.). The last thing we need is tax reform that further reduces the income tax and increases all other taxes.

Remember, the only tax requiring the wealthy to pay more than the rest of us is the income tax. Of course they want to lower it! Yes, the top 50 percent of income earners pay most of the income taxes, but they earn most of the income, so what's the problem?

And what about wealthy preachers? The wealthy don't need Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. Therefore, they don't want to help pay for them. They suggest letting churches take care of the poor.

The problem is, churches won't and they know it. Most religious contributions go to salaries, housing, car allowances, marketing, religious entertainment, trips to Israel, Bible cruises, conferences, family life centers, banquets, bills, etc. There are exceptions, but the percentage of their income most churches give to the poor is shocking. Like most the wealthy, they prefer to keep what's theirs.

Actually, I would be open to taxing church income if I knew all the money would go toward social safety nets. Why not? That would force churches to spend at least 25 percent of their income on the poor.

But affluent preachers have already joined with affluent politicians and will quote scripture proving the money should stay within their affluent congregations. After all, without affluent buildings, bodies and budgets, the gospel couldn't be preached (and they wouldn't have jobs).

Why should churches care for the poor anyway, especially foreigners? Why waste money on educating, feeding and healing them? Their parents broke the law. Let them stay in Mexico and eat cake.

Besides, Obama wants to take away our guns. That's the real issue. How else will we Christians defend our possessions?

Seriously, it's all about who gets the largest slice of the American pie. The middle class scored some points during the 40s, '50s and '60s, but from an historical standpoint, we never really had a chance.

Now the politicians (you have to be wealthy to be one) and the preachers (definitely upwardly mobile) have joined forces. Sort of reminds me of something I read in the Book of Revelation.

And if we challenge them, were either unpatriotic or going to hell. Plus, they might pass new laws to put us in new private prisons.

By the way, did you know the Biblical numerical value of FOX is 666? Seriously!

Alan Shope
Gainesville



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