Can you believe this???? The amount of disgust I have for this is palatable. What kind of a person is this minister?
Why do we Americans have to go to London to find this story???
Thanks to the internet, this is easily found, but why didn't the American media pick up on this farce?
And this is from a Conservative in the mode of the Heritage Foundation no less. I find the funeral story the ultimate in hypocritical lunacy, symtomatic of everything that is wrong with the Bush family doctrine. The analysis below it is also deeply misleading for many reasons most importantly that Bush's flawed domestic spending priorities have left more people in poverty than ever before making the increased costs of helping those people skyrocket well beyond his increases (the result is less people get less help and the cycle spins out of control), and his outrageously expensive and fiscally mismanaged (I'm being nice here) war of choice coupled with enormous tax cuts that are not trickling down makes have made our economy weak and unstable and put us in more debt than any of us can really comprehend (not to mention that any number that come out of the Heritage Foundation are inherently misleading).
When will this country wake up. Christian Conservatives are insensitive, hypocritical, and crooked. Not only will we pay for these theives, but our children will also have to pay off their fraud.
Saint Ken of Enron leads Bush’s new Christianity
By Andrew Sullivan
The London Times
Sunday, July 16, 2006
And so it was that at last week’s funeral for Kenneth Lay, a man who presided over one of the greatest con jobs in the history of American capitalism, the congregation was treated to a eulogy. When someone dies, you might expect some deference to the deceased. You certainly don’t expect a piling on. And, out of respect, the thousands whose pensions were destroyed by Lay’s malfeasance did not protest. But what few expected was that Lay would be described not just as a flawed but loved family man, but as the emblem of Christian sacrifice — an icon of fundamentalist victimology, almost a saint. In fact, the minister who gave the sermon compared Lay to Martin Luther King and, yes, Jesus Christ. In the pews were a former president, George Bush, former first lady, Barbara Bush, and the Bush familial dignitaries, James Baker and Robert Mosbacher. And then the coup de grace: the white-collar convicted criminal was compared to an innocent black man, James Byrd, brutally lynched in Texas not so long ago, tied to the back of a truck and dragged through dirt roads until his body split in two. “Ken Lay was neither black nor poor, as James Byrd was, but I’m angry because Ken was the victim of a lynching,” the minister said to huge and hearty applause. Welcome to the strange new world of conservative evangelical Christianity, where government torture is no big deal, Lay is a martyr, and the death penalty is God’s will. In this version of Christianity what matters is not so much what you do — but what’s in your heart. And if you have committed to Jesus Christ and attend the right church, a little corporate larceny is no big whoop. And so a president who has abandoned the Geneva conventions and signed more death warrants than any other American alive is regarded by many as sincere in his desire to do good, to help others, and to bring healing to the world. In this George W Bush is like Lay — a man who, while bilking share owners and employees out of their livelihoods, was, by all accounts, personally generous, charitable and devout. A true Christian. A giver. Of other people’s money. That’s as good a description of Bush’s domestic policy as any. One of the great mistakes about Bush is to conflate his foreign policy conservatism with his domestic record. At home, there is barely any social programme he doesn’t want to spend money on. He makes Gordon Brown look like Margaret Thatcher. His liberal spending record beats any president, Democrat or Republican, since FDR. While federal tax revenue, announced last week, now accounts for 18.3% of gross domestic product (GDP), slightly higher than the average 18.1% for the past 50 years, federal spending has been more than increasing to match. In fact, if spending had stayed at late-Clinton levels as a proportion of GDP, there would be almost no deficit at all right now. This is no accident, no fit of absent-mindedness. The philosophy behind the record was baldly stated by the president three years ago: “We have a responsibility that when somebody hurts, government has got to move.” Or as Andy Card, the former chief of staff, once put it: “This president sees America as we think about a 10-year-old child.” For Bush government is the great healer of private wounds, the salve for anyone’s pain. Unlike Clinton, who merely felt the pain, downsized government and balanced the budget, Bush is best described as an evangelical leftist. In fact, Bush has increased domestic spending at twice the rate of his predecessor. And last year, despite an election pledge to rein in spending, Bush increased it by another 9% in one year alone — the largest annual increase since 1990. As the conservative Heritage Foundation has pointed out, homeland security and warfare account for only a third of this increase. The vast bulk is on social programmes and entitlements — for pensions and healthcare and any number of other schemes to help the poor or vulnerable. Federal education spending has gone up 137% in five years; health research and education has soared by 78%. More interestingly, anti-poverty spending, during a period of rapid economic growth, is now more than 3% of GDP for the first time in history. Spending on healthcare for the poor — Medicaid — has risen by more than 50%. Bono is right about Bush: he wants government to help people. And he’s spending more government money on the disadvantaged than any Democrat in history. And this is not counting the future. By far the biggest increase in spending was the president’s endorsement of a budget-busting programme to provide state-of-the-art prescription drugs for the elderly. The costs will soon spiral as 77m baby boomers retire and tap into Bush’s Christian largesse. One number captures the extent of Bush’s “compassion”. When he took office, according to the non-partisan Government Accountability Office, the total unfunded future liabilities of the US government amounted to $20.4 trillion. In four years the Bush Republicans increased that to $43.3 trillion. Almost all of it is on healthcare for the elderly. That debt hangs over the American and world economy like an axe suspended by a thread. Some of this can be attributed to Bush’s famous lack of interest in fiscal affairs — he hasn’t vetoed a single spending bill in his term of office. Some can be attributed to political pressure — the push for more drugs for the elderly was intense. But much is also a key part of what Bush conservatism is about: using big government and massive spending to prove one’s Christian credentials. The European left don’t want to concede this: it would muddle their angry, cartoonish picture of American conservatism. But Bush’s domestic charity is integral to his redefinition of American conservatism into Christian socialism. He wants to spread freedom abroad while bestowing endless charity at home. It’s a grand and stirring Fabian vision — more ambitious than any Democrat has dared argue for. It’s just a pity that the younger generation will be forced to pay for all of it — with interest. Click here to view story.