Sunday, August 22, 2010

Brody's Scribbles... The True Cost & Moral Deficit Of The Politics Of The Ultra-Christian Right

Downtown Colorado Springs  Photo By The Denver Post
By Brody Levesque (Bethesda, Maryland) AUG 22 | What happens when rabid Republican partisan politics & damn near Taliban like qualities converge and meld into a political reality? The answer is no further than the example of the City of Colorado Springs, Colorado.
A long time bastion of conservative political actions and then in the past three decades home to the more radical Christian activist organisations, in particular, James Dobson's Focus On The Family, Colorado Springs has suffered what some might construe as near bankruptcy that has left the city struggling to meet its bills, and in fact, has led to the loss of significant city services including fire-rescue, police, and basic infrastructure such as public transportation & utilities.
In late June of this year, documentarian Chris Hume, reporting for the progressive news organisation's website wrote:
The city of Colorado Springs has long persisted as an ultra-conservative, anti-tax bastion. When voters rejected the latest proposal to raise taxes to maintain city services, the bottom fell out of the city budget. Now, hundreds of thousands of citizens are struggling to live without basic services. In this exclusive documentary, we delve into the effects of anti-tax policies on the lives of ordinary people.
One commentator observed:
So... if I do a little math here, the stated property tax increase of $150 per household would come to about $12 per household per month.
Maybe the churches (the ones shown in the video seem pretty well funded) can ask their congregations to redirect $12/month to their bretheren in the city instead of to the donation basket of the church... (I wonder what fraction that would come to of what the congregants regularly donate anyway?) Maybe the members of the churches could also devote one hour per week to public works instead of sitting around listening to some guy pontificate about generosity and the spirit of giving...
Have weekly electric power outages during afternoons. This would save electricity costs especially what people use for air conditioning those big houses on the Hill, the Broadmoor, etc during the summer. Do the same only at night during the winter. The Utilities could then donate a portion of their savings to the city.
That covers cutting expenses. How about increasing income?
Well, since, again, the churches are in effect participating in the political process, why not either:
a) tax them; or,
b) let them take over operation of all the city services?
I don't want to sound like I'm coming down on churches - which are, after all, more just a reflection of the people that make them up. So...
Another idea: $12 per household per month, for an average 2 person household comes to $6 per person - or about 4 cups of coffee. If each person could forego one cup of coffee per week (4 weeks per month) and instead donate that to the city... problem solved.
Help me out here, folks... any other creative ideas?
Or... is all this just a little too much to ask here in America, the richest country in the world?
A resident of Colorado Springs noted:
As a resident of Colorado Springs for the last 18 years, I'd like to give a little perspective. The City Council has always put private business ahead of the citizens. It is said that Colorado Springs is the only city in the US that is more corrupt than Chicago. So it shouldn't surprise anyone that it is turning into another Detroit.
The Council treats tax revenue as a windfall to be given out to private business and organizations - such as $60 million to the USOC [ United States Olympic Committee ] based here - then they turn off the street lights to save $1 million, because they are out of money. So, in one respect, the voters had a point in voting down that tax measure - the City takes in plenty of money, they just don't use it for the benefit of the citizens.
Then again, there is a mentality of GREED in this city that is unparalleled anywhere else, and I blame that on the faux-Christianity that was brought here by Dr. Dobson and his "Focus on the Family" fascism. These are the greediest, stingiest, most selfish and hateful people on the planet - and they proudly do it all "in Jesus name."
Make no mistake about it, I am not solely picking on Focus on The Family here, but as that organisation is the largest of all the Christian activist organisations that call Colorado Springs home, which also includes six mega-churches, it's interesting to note that the vast majority of their tax-free income which is derived from their Colorado Springs base gets funneled into very expensively produced Anti-Gay, Anti-Choice, Anti-Liberal programs for television, cable, internet, and print.
One wonders how much say poor folk & the middle class would benefit if these so-called Christian people spent less time worried about things that frankly are none of their business, and instead 'put their money where their mouth is' in providing assistance during these tough economic times?
One of their favorite dead horses to beat is of course the so-called "GAY" agenda. I did some research, oh and just for gratuitous purposes, here's a video that cost Focus On The Family nearly $20,000 dollars to produce and distribute:
Okay, gotcha, the "GAY" agenda is out to brainwash your kids... hmm, you know instead of whipping up fear about a non-existent threat Focus On Family- how about maybe you all spend that $20K on assisting your fellow citizens in Colorado Springs that could use the help? I hear about how we in the LGBT community as well as women who have abortions, and illegal immigrants, the list goes on ad infinitum nauseum, are corrupting and bankrupting this nation.Oh really?
What stuns me is the blatant hypocrisy of these people and the fact that they never advocate real solutions or truly humanist moral values, nope, they'd rather preach about our evil, or somebody else's without even casting a solitary glance in the mirror at themselves.


Desmond Rutherford said...

In Wikipedia,

Thomas Jefferson, "is reported to have said, "Question with boldness even the existence of a God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason, than that of blind-folded fear."

Now will these people go away and realise we have the inalienable rights of "Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."

It really is not that difficult to understand.