Tuesday, July 12, 2011

How Would Jesus Solve the U.S. Budget Problem?

In all four gospels there’s a written account of an episode where Jesus chased money changers and livestock merchants from the Temple of Herod by the use of his own physical force. So from the gospels we know this about the Lord and Savior of All Mankind— he was not above pitching a good old fashioned fit in the pursuit of political activism when confronted by an intolerable economic situation. Good for him. This documentation stands in stark contrast to what the gospels say about the actions of Jesus when confronted by homosexuality and abortion (both of which were as common in biblical times as they are now). Quite simply, the gospels say NOTHING about this. Zippo. Zilch. Notta. Jesus, as far as we know, never uttered one single solitary word about homosexuality or gay lifestyle or abortion. These issues may or may not have been off his radar, but they were certainly absent from his talking points.

I bring this up now because I believe the Republicans are missing a great opportunity. For the last 40 or more years, the Republican Party has regularly found someone on their team with a special relationship to Jesus— somebody who could tap into the infinite mind of the Son of God, and report to us what the Big Guy really and truly feels about things like gay marriage or abortion. How else can you explain all the right wing rhetoric about God’s opposition to such practices? The GOP position is clearly not taken from the gospels which are silent on the dreaded sex-related topics.

The newest GOP favorite with a channel (albeit an indirect channel) to Jesus is Michele Bachmann. Her husband, Doctor Bachmann Ph.D. runs the family business— a Christian Counseling service that offers to change a person’s sexual orientation from gay to straight by filling them in on God’s negative opinion of their behavior. I think Doctor Bachmann Ph.D. is squandering a huge opportunity here. If he can climb inside God’s head to get the lowdown on homosexuality, why wouldn’t he also try to get some divine inspiration about topics like budget deficits or how to avoid national bankruptcy? Biblical history tells us that Jesus actually cared about financial malfeasance and economic impropriety enough to get physically involved trying to make things better. I’ll bet Jesus would be more than willing to talk about raising the debt ceiling if only some special person like Doctor Bachmann Ph.D. would ask the right questions during their next discussion. And then Doctor Bachmann Ph.D. could tell his wife, Michele, and she could go to Waterloo and tell the rest of us.

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