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Bill Moyer's Latest #6923
Sat Oct 25, 2003 2:02 PM
Sat Oct 25, 2003 2:02 PM
Joined: Apr 2001
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British Columbia, Canada
Ruth Offline OP
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<br> I happened to be up late last night and turned on the TV to keep me company as I sewed. Bill Moyer was on talking about the desperate economic situation in America regarding the distribution of wealth. His guest was Joseph Hough, president of Union Theological Seminary who is making a big stir and calling on what he describes as the "Abrahamic heritage" consisting of Jews, Christians and Muslims, to protest to their elected officials that more of the wealth should be spread to the needy. He states that an ever greater divide is continuing to grow between the richest people in America and the poor. He says that this is an extremely unethical and immoral direction for society to be taking. That the rich buy their way into economic increase by very large contributions to the politicians who then make and enforce laws which allow the rich to keep and increase their money., while holding back the poor and middle classes, by taxation and not taking care of the poor and needy. According to Hough the fact that corporations are paying workers less than poverty wages while increasing profits, signals a falling away from the Biblical practice of giving to the poor and taking care of the needy and it is time for "all"<br> of the "Abrahamic heritage" to do something about it!<br><br> Does anyone have any thoughts on this?<br><br> In His Hands, <br><br>Ruth


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Re: Bill Moyer's Latest [Re: Ruth] #6924
Sat Oct 25, 2003 2:17 PM
Sat Oct 25, 2003 2:17 PM

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As a Class Warrior and a hippie (albeit some of it gets sheared off by the Word) I agree with the guest about the fact that Capitalism as it is now is horrendously vile. But I don't believe in hands across America religious unity for the sake of the poor. We are reaching a point that the American Voting system is being torn away from the public by greedy public interest groups and profit interested Politicians. Our current President is making bank on his tax breaks and other corporate protections that are being grandfathered into bills like the Homeland Security Bill and such. But Jesus said the poor will always be with us. And there is no way to be a consumer and not somehow support the mighty corporations. But I have a feeling that when the new Rome falls it'll be because of our leaders gross overspending and our societies blatant disregard for the poor. That's my two cents. But I'll listen to what you all have to say and will consider the fact that I'm young and dumb.<br>Aaron

Re: Bill Moyer's Latest [Re: Ruth] #6925
Sat Oct 25, 2003 6:52 PM
Sat Oct 25, 2003 6:52 PM
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Northwest Indiana, USA
Wes Offline
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Ruth,<br><br>There certainly is a gulf between the very wealthy and the poor in America today. However giving entitlements to the poor, minorities, and other less fortunate has only made them less willing to participate in the work force. What we need to do is encourage productivity and reward it. Opportunities are there for those willing to work but many people would rather receive government checks and remain on the sidelines. Unfortunately many jobs are also going overseas because consumers want to get the best bang for their buck and labor rates in China are below our poverty level. We can't compete with that.<br><br>America seems to be following in the footsteps of Rome when it fell. Adulterous homosexual lifestyles and non-productive citizens. History does repeat itself unfortunately and important lessons are not learned. <br><br>As far as tax rates are concerned in America the worker who earns under $50,000 per year pays next to no taxes while those earning more than $50,000 pay 95% of all the taxes. Unfortunately those facts are not widely known for political reasons. Government spending is way too excessive and soon will bring us into bankruptcy or at least a lower lifestylye. That's the weakness of a democracy.<br> <br>Proverbs 10:26<br>As vinegar to the teeth and smoke to the eyes, So is the lazy man to those who send him. <br><br>Proverbs 12:24<br>The hand of the diligent will rule, But the lazy man will be put to forced labor. <br><br>Proverbs 13:4<br>The soul of a lazy man desires, and has nothing; But the soul of the diligent shall be made rich. <br><br>Remember righteousness exalts a nation! [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/scratch.gif" alt="scratch" title="scratch[/img]<br><br>That's my two cents. [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/grin.gif" alt="grin" title="grin[/img]<br><br><br>Wes


When I survey the wondrous cross on which the Prince of Glory died, my richest gain I count but loss and pour contempt on all my pride. - Isaac Watts
Re: Bill Moyer's Latest [Re: Ruth] #6926
Sat Oct 25, 2003 7:46 PM
Sat Oct 25, 2003 7:46 PM
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You maybe interested in a Mission work by Mo Leverett Desire Street Ministries. He had some great exegesis and insights on Deut 15:4, 11 the last time I heard him speak that really challenged the church in the area of caring for the poor. Of course, he not only speaks about missions to the poor he ministers and actually lives with them as well. <br><br>


Reformed and Always Reforming,
Re: Bill Moyer's Latest [Re: Ruth] #6927
Sat Oct 25, 2003 9:50 PM
Sat Oct 25, 2003 9:50 PM
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Virginia
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I took a class on poverty last year, and wrote a final paper about similar issues. If I can find it, I'll see if I can put it up here.


Kyle

I tell you, this man went down to his house justified.
Re: Bill Moyer's Latest [Re: CovenantInBlood] #6928
Sat Oct 25, 2003 11:32 PM
Sat Oct 25, 2003 11:32 PM
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I took a class on poverty last year, and wrote a final paper about similar issues. If I can find it, I'll see if I can put it up here.<br><br>Here it is. My basic views have not changed much. I was opposed by just about everyone in the class! [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/shrug.gif" alt="shrug" title="shrug[/img] Anyway, enjoy, and let me know if the format (MS Word 6.0/7.0) doesn't work for you.

Attached Files-Click on Image to view full size.
3-27768-poverty3.doc (103 downloads)

Kyle

I tell you, this man went down to his house justified.
Re: Bill Moyer's Latest [Re: Ruth] #6929
Sat Oct 25, 2003 11:42 PM
Sat Oct 25, 2003 11:42 PM
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The Bronx, NY
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Dear Ruth,

Just to focus rhetorically on a single aspect of your review of the Moyer program, I must respond to its statement:[color:red]"an ever greater divide is continuing to grow between the richest people in America and the poor." That piece of "news", apparently intended to shock an apathetic public, is about as statistically significant as the perennial education shocker which states "latest test results show half our children performing below average![img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/shocked.gif" alt="shocked" title="shocked[/img]" What did Mr. Hough mean by the words "ever greater divide"? Greater standard deviation, perhaps, of mean income after taxes? or purchasing power? or population below and above a magic income level? From what point in time until what point in time? at what rate? Did Moyer probe him for documentation of these terms?

I have lived among poor neighbors in both rural America (50's, 60's, 70's) and urban, inner-city America (80's to the present). Poverty is indeed a grim fact of life, and the church must always "remember the poor"--first in her midst, and next among her neighbors--and a wise government will ensure that safety nets are in place. But it must be stated that poverty in America is nearly an oxymoron when compared with poverty in the balance of the world. Having seen it first-hand in urban China, and hearing from friends about, say, Haiti and Afghanistan, the difference between 2nd/3rd world poverty and the West's is staggering, and honestly, makes Mr. Hough's appeal lose its appeal.

Perhaps Aaron--if you're reading this post--could enlighten us as to why the suffering masses of American poor, slaving away below minimum wage, are not applying, by the tens of millions, for work visas in China, Haiti, Uganda, France, Russia, Mexico?


In Christ,
Paul S
Re: Bill Moyer's Latest [Re: Paul_S] #6930
Sun Oct 26, 2003 12:50 PM
Sun Oct 26, 2003 12:50 PM
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British Columbia, Canada
Ruth Offline OP
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Dear Paul S,<br><br> Good post! Actually Mr Hough did offer more statistical info to the % of the divide, I just didn't remember the #'s etc and did not want to post too inaccurately! He referred to the standard used as "capability of function". A man earning "blank" amt. per week or month, with say 4 children, rent or mortgage, food, has not money left for medical, etc. Even though everyone must agree the standard in America does not anywhere near compare to that of 3rd World countries!<br><br> My own perspective was more of the focus of what the church does even for it's own poor. Someone once told me about the church they belonged to, wanted to change the color of the carpet in the church building instead giving food or money to the local poor. We sure seem to look after our own comfort and beyond before we look to others who have a lot less than we! I am disappointed that this un- Christlike attitude exists in our churches overwhelmingly today! We need bigger buildings, softer seats, more carpets, etc., always looking to ourselves! <br><br> It is to be expected in the "world", but in our church?<br><br>In His Hands, <br><br>Ruth


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Re: Bill Moyer's Latest [Re: Wes] #6931
Sun Oct 26, 2003 3:21 PM
Sun Oct 26, 2003 3:21 PM
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Kelowna, British Columbia, Can...
Tom Offline
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Wes<br><br>I couldn't agree with you more on what you said. If people were not so lazy, they would not be such a drain on the system and it would be easier on people who are poor through no fault of their own.<br>Over the years I have run into many people who are so lazy that they only work if they are forced to. Then, when they have worked long enough that can collect unemployment insurance, they quit work and collect it and the cycle goes on and on. Others that I am aware of today, have lived off welfare most of their lives and really have no desire to ever work.<br>I have heard however, that the government (of British Columbia) is starting to make it harder to do this for many of these people.<br>Of course I am talking about Canada, because I live here, but people's attitudes have no borders.<br><br>Tom

Re: Bill Moyer's Latest [Re: Ruth] #6932
Sun Oct 26, 2003 4:17 PM
Sun Oct 26, 2003 4:17 PM
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Northwest Indiana, USA
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Ruth,<blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr>[color:"blue"]A man earning "blank" amt. per week or month, with say 4 children, rent or mortgage, food, has not money left for medical, etc. Even though everyone must agree the standard in America does not anywhere near compare to that of 3rd World countries!</font><hr></blockquote><p>Well the cost of living is high in America. We all have to decide how much we need versus how much we want. I've heard the argument that you've descibed above and recognize how expensive it can be to raise a family. When I was a child my parents had to do without a lot of things to pay tuition for me, my brother, and my sister to go to a Christian school. Are families willing to sacrifice today to do this? My parents sacrificed to insure that we were given a Christian education. I didn't even consider myself being poor even though we rarely had meals with meat in them. Today's minimum living standards are so much higher that I don't think many people really know what poverty is.<br><br>I don't think money is the real issue. Materialism has so blinded people that we think we need more than we really do. In America today we depend on consumer spending to keep the economy going. We are the most idolatrous covetous people on the face of the earth.<blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr>[color:"blue"]My own perspective was more of the focus of what the church does even for it's own poor. Someone once told me about the church they belonged to, wanted to change the color of the carpet in the church building instead giving food or money to the local poor. We sure seem to look after our own comfort and beyond before we look to others who have a lot less than we! I am disappointed that this un- Christlike attitude exists in our churches overwhelmingly today! We need bigger buildings, softer seats, more carpets, etc., always looking to ourselves! <br><br>It is to be expected in the "world", but in our church?</font><hr></blockquote><p>I agree we should care for the poor especially those of the household of faith.<blockquote>1 Timothy 5:8<br>But if anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever. </blockquote>I know our church is very sensitive to the needs of the poor. The Deacons in our church provide tuition assistance for any family that cannot afford to send their children to Christian school. They also try to help some families who are poor because they haven't learned how to manage their money by teaching them how. Do you think we should share all things in common with each other as the early church community did in Acts 2:44-45?<br><br>Wes <br>


When I survey the wondrous cross on which the Prince of Glory died, my richest gain I count but loss and pour contempt on all my pride. - Isaac Watts
Re: Bill Moyer's Latest [Re: Ruth] #6933
Sun Oct 26, 2003 4:57 PM
Sun Oct 26, 2003 4:57 PM

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Dear Ruth:<br><br>Thanks for the posts Ruth. I agree with you. Everything Paul and Wes say is true, but they don't deal with the reality that the church in this country is very rich and shows very little concern for the poor. I could post lots of scripture, new and old testament, that condemns this, and James' "It it not the rich that oppress you?" comes to mind as does "Be warmed and be filled", and "Pure and undefiled religion is this to visit the widows and orphans in their distress", but these passages don't seem to be heard or preached on often.<br><br>I have been on both sides of the isle, rich and poor, oppressor and oppressed, so I have no particular ax to grind. When I was rich and oppressed the poor as a professing "Christian", I vehemently denied it, somewhere in the back of my mind my conscience bothered me. But now by the grace of God I am in a place where I see the reality of what it is like to be poor and oppressed. Paul is right in that it is not the grinding poverty of so many other places, but it is still hand to mouth, almost no health care, and what there is is prejudiced, even though I pay cash and have never taken a dime of any sort of public assistance. And every day gets worse, physically speaking. I'm not complaining, in fact I'm more content and closer to God than I have ever been and praise God, I can say with Paul, that though my outward man is decaying my inward man is renewed day by day and had I to make the choice over again I would make the same one.<br><br>The point the man was making on Moyers (and it is to the shame of professing "Christians", perhaps eternally, that these points are made almost exclusively on liberal God dishonoring programs like Moyers') is that we live in a society that is fueled by ramant greed and covetousness and that those that have more want more and more and more and that everywhere you look protections to keep the system from running rampant are breaking down. From the advertizment of pharmaceuticals on TV, to the robbing of retirement accounts to ignoring the medical needs of 20% of the population, it's eveywhere, and there is a day of reckoning coming. Most of those that have much take no pleasure in sharing the love of God in material needs with those that have little. Yes, many of the poor are lazy, but the majority are not, they work hard, die young and are forgotten, except they be like Lazarus. You may not like hearing it, but it is true. And some of those that are lazy have been raised that way and were never taught about hard work. Men like Mo Leverett, that Joe mentioned, realize this and are doing something Christ like about it, but his ministry is the exception rather than the rule. <br><br>Thats my opinion.<br><br>In Him,<br><br>Gerry <br><br>

Re: Bill Moyer's Latest #6934
Sun Oct 26, 2003 5:50 PM
Sun Oct 26, 2003 5:50 PM
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British Columbia, Canada
Ruth Offline OP
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Gerry and Wes,<br><br> Thanks for your posts, you seem to have hit the button I was looking for. The main point is the degree of rampant covetousness and greed in our whole societal attitude. There will always be those who are lazy, but mostly, the "poor" we are talking about are those working or trying to find work, who as the speaker put it are not reaching the "capability to function", if you understand the description. <br><br> Most of us here are probably middle-class working people, who really have more than we "need", yet our focus is mostly is on getting more or at least maintaining our own lifestyles. I'm not pointing fingers here, except to myself more than anyone else. We are so busy "managing" our lives, our focus is not on our contribution to society in general, or how as responsible Christians we should be contributing, but more on how society is affecting or contributing to us!<br><br> Wes, I'm not sure how to respond to your question, but when I think about it, it might not be an all bad idea! In a way, I envy them, even though I'm sure it wasn't all fun and games. But I am sure their focus was better than ours! ( Or mine, at least)<br><br>In His Hands,<br><br>Ruth


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Re: Bill Moyer's Latest [Re: Ruth] #6935
Sun Oct 26, 2003 10:29 PM
Sun Oct 26, 2003 10:29 PM
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Virginia
CovenantInBlood Offline
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<blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr>[color:"blue"]My own perspective was more of the focus of what the church does even for it's own poor. Someone once told me about the church they belonged to, wanted to change the color of the carpet in the church building instead giving food or money to the local poor. We sure seem to look after our own comfort and beyond before we look to others who have a lot less than we! I am disappointed that this un- Christlike attitude exists in our churches overwhelmingly today! We need bigger buildings, softer seats, more carpets, etc., always looking to ourselves!</font><hr></blockquote><p><br><br>Speaking of!<br><br>The interior of one local church building here was burnt out a couple years ago; many things were lost, including an historic organ. Last year, they worked to restore the interior, and in the process, purchased a new $80,000 organ! I was so angry, although the whole event did not directly effect me; the money could have gone toward so many better things---the debts of several families in the vicinity could easily have been forgiven, used cars might have been purchased for some people who cannot afford anything. While the church I have been attending has faults (Pentecostal, Arminian), in the area of caring for the poor and elderly, there is much to commend. The building itself remains largely a temporary structure, while money in the thousands of dollars is devoted every year to aiding local families in financial need, or providing food and other goods, in addition to supporting several foreign missionary and local evangelization efforts. And the members of the church themselves are loving and devoted to each other's welfare. (This has been what has kept me from leaving this church so far, for those of you who recall my situation.)<br><br>So, yeah. I understand your dismay, Ruth.


Kyle

I tell you, this man went down to his house justified.
Re: Bill Moyer's Latest [Re: CovenantInBlood] #6936
Sun Oct 26, 2003 10:50 PM
Sun Oct 26, 2003 10:50 PM
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Kelowna, British Columbia, Can...
Tom Offline
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Kyle<br><br>While I agree with the sentiment of your post, how well do you know the situation?<br>For instance, I am not sure about that particular Church's insurance policy, but there some policies one must replace items lost, with the same kind of items. It may be that the old organ was insured at $80,000 and they had to replace the organ itself with an organ of similar value.<br>This may not be the case, but perhaps you should check these things out first.<br><br>Tom

Re: Bill Moyer's Latest [Re: Tom] #6937
Mon Oct 27, 2003 1:08 AM
Mon Oct 27, 2003 1:08 AM
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Virginia
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Tom,<br><br>Thanks for the reminder to check myself. [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/bingo.gif" alt="bingo" title="bingo[/img] From what I understood this was not a purchase based on an insurance requirement, but my understanding may very well be wrong. In lieu of such knowledge, I should not have assessed the situation as I did.


Kyle

I tell you, this man went down to his house justified.
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