Sunday, September 18, 2005

National Lessons

Pope Benedict XVI's envoy to the United States to bring aid for Hurricane Katrina's victims said Saturday that many of them have been struck by "shameful" poverty in "rich America."
"The weakness experienced by the United States faced with this catastrophe" serves to "destroy all of our beliefs about self-sufficiency," the Vatican official said. "Thus, for me, in the bad part of this event there is also the hope, for many citizens, of seeing that the world is greater than the United States," Cordes said.

Well, self-sufficiency is an idol which takes many forms. One of them is that poverty is an individual, not a community, problem. That is the sin of thinking the individual is greater than the community. Or that the community, is only the people you know.

This week the President vowed that the government would provide, "whatever it costs" to rebuild the Gulf region, but it is now clear that the cost of the reconstruction efforts will be borne by poor Americans who depend the most on government housing programs, after school programs and Medicaid that have already been starved by Bush Administration cuts.

President Bush cannot credibly preach that he will eradicate a ‘legacy of poverty’ while his Republican allies work to cut $10 billion from Medicaid, a health program serving the country’s poorest families. The President has pledged to cut unnecessary spending, but he has ruled out the option of amending his tax breaks for the rich, which will cost the government trillions of dollars over the next several years.
Rep. Ed Markey

And the man in charge of that reconstruction, says there is only one problem in Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama: the administration didn't override the local government.

Death, destruction, devastation, calamity, catastrophe: all pale before the need to win the game of politics. Power's only end, is the service of power.

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