Thursday, October 8, 2009
One of the side effects for me of all this Health Care Reform debate in the past few months has been that it has opened my eyes regarding how to look differently at the modern world. A new perspective, an eye-opener, from the ways that politcians raise money to be perpetuated in power to the way that Health Care in this country exists solely for a profit at the expense of humanity. Not very Christian by my definition of Christianity.
Several terms have popped up in the media lately. One is Oligarchy. That word has been associated with Russia after the collapse of the Soviet system. One definition is “a state governed by a few persons” and for the benefit of a few persons.
That leads into the way that corporations now seem to rule our country. Our foreign policy and domestic finances seem to be ruled by what I have heard recently described on the MSM as Corporate Communism. Not corporate welfare but corporate communism. There seems to be a dictatorship of the working classes by the few that treat Americans as second class citizens in this imperfect democracy and most definitely for a profit.
I am too old to be marching in protest or being a fanatic about definitions and ideology. I am however awakened as a Cultural Christian to the fact that Capitalism is a religion of sorts.
The Vatican once defined the Communism of the Soviet era as a religion, a religious belief system. Then too, in a similar manner, we should look at this new belief system (religious?), American Capitalism, that directly rules us and our actions in this sick and depleted economy.
Two secular quasi-religious things have followed me all my life that nobody, if ever, openly questions. The first is Patriotism, wrapping oneself in the flag – “my country right or wrong, my country!”
The other secular quasi-religious thing has been how Capitalism was a good thing and not a bad thing like Communism. Fifty percent of the USA national budget was devoted to the defeat of Soviet style communism for half a century.
Now it would seem that the ruling American Oligarchy of Corporations wraps itself in the myth of the so-called myth of free markets that never existed and do not now exist anywhere on this planet except when the powerful rob the defenseless of some life sustaining commodity.
As such and as a bona-fide religion, who are the gods of capitalism except the CEOs of corporations? We bear them honor and gifts and benefits like many gods in a Hindu Shrine and they give us nothing in return.
You mean capitalism as a religion is not monotheistic – of one god – like the traditional Sunday going to church religions?
Capitalism - the religion behind Corporate Communism and Billionaire Bolsheviks is ruled by one God – Greed!
How easy it is to see how early Christianity had to compete and flourish and overcome the evil political, economic and religious tyrannies of the Roman Empire.
How the simple words of Jesus as brother and cousin to humanity through the divine inspiration of a higher order blew away the inhumanity of those long gone generations. How hard it is to exist in competition presently with the forces of - I do not feel comfortable calling them evil, at home and abroad in the world.
A Lutheran Pastor who I greatly admired told the story of his first real suit being fitted by a taylor. The man was young and on his way to a Lutheran seminary.
The taylor was Jewish and asked why the young man was being fitted for the suit. The young man replied that he was going to the seminary.
The taylor replied that he knew the words of Jesus very well and he repeated them to the young man.
“What does it profit a man who gains the whole world and loses his immortal soul?”
Good reasoning and common sense through the ages sustains those of us who must endure and overcome the very real subtle forces of evil all about us.