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The tax plan and Jesus' option for the poor


Jesus was born a poor man and he ministered to the poor. He spoke about his special love for the poor. Unfortunately, it seems his voice would not be welcomed among the Republicans, including Republican Catholics and Christians who have seemingly forgotten the roots of the very faith they claim to represent.

It is unbelievable that such Republicans and some Democrats would instead have a preferential option for the very rich that represent no more than 1 percent, if even that, of the total population.

These politicians would rather give unfair tax breaks to millionaires and billionaires than support the poor and unemployed through longer extensions of unemployment benefits, including to those who have exhausted their unemployment benefits. Instead of supporting immediate job creation programs, they instead want to allow the very rich more money to stash away or to buy one more luxury item.

Despite their clamor for reducing the deficit, they’d rather give more tax breaks to the very rich that almost all economist agree only adds to the deficit because those tax cuts are not paid for.

But it’s the callousness and lack of humanity that bothers me the most.

Morning Briefing


More on the tax cut compromise


On his God's Politics blog, Jim Wallis says that President Obama should have fought tax cuts for the wealthy.

He should have fought this one. The richest 2 percent of the country just got an extension of tax cuts they didn’t need at great cost to us all. President Barack Obama should have been fighting against the self-interest of the very wealthiest Americans long before this. So he is now backed into a corner, and just made a compromise that he thinks is the best deal possible ... The president did want to keep some things for average Americans in this compromise, but he lost the big battle a long time ago by not fighting the people whose greed, recklessness, and utter lack of concern for the common good have led us into this terrible crisis.

Read the full entry: President Obama Should Have Fought This One

Bridget Mary 'talks' with Benedict


A press release from the Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests:

In his just-released book, Light of the World: "The Pope, the Church and the Sign of the Times," Pope Benedict XVI says ordaining women is not the church's choice to make. See: Pope: Church has 'no authority' to ordain women

In her just-released book, Living Gospel Equality Now, Loving in the Heart of God: A Roman Catholic Women Priest Story," Bridget Mary Meehan shares her journey to priesthood as a Roman Catholic woman. See: Living Gospel Equality Now

The following "press release" is an imagined dialogue between the Pope and Bridget Mary.

Pope Benedict: It's Jesus' fault. He didn't ordain women priests. Why blame me for everything?

Bridget Mary: Don't blame Jesus! He didn't ordain anyone -- male or female.

Pope Benedict: He had only male Apostles.

Maryland poised to approve same-sex marriage


Maryland is a blue, blue state. So blue, in fact, that the Democrats gained seats in the state Senate this past November when Republicans were racking up big wins elsewhere. And Democratic Governor Martin O’Malley won re-election by a healthy margin.

Now, in spite of historic opposition by both the Catholic bishops and the black churches, the state appears to be in a position to join a growing number of jurisdictions in approving same-sex marriage.

The neighboring District of Columbia approved such a measure in March of this year.

The leadership in the House of Delegates says they have the votes to pass such a measure, but the state Senate may have to overcome a filibuster. If that is successful, Governor O’Malley, a Catholic himself, is prepared to sign such legislation.

Read more from this morning’s Washington Post.t

Dueling Catholic journalists in Chicago


Catholic commentator Tom Roeser is hopping mad. But then he's almost always hopping mad. This week, however, he's ticked off at Chicago journalist Carol Marin. But then he's almost always ticked off at her.

In his Monday blog post, Roeser (who wears a number of hats, including as Chicago correspondent for "The Wanderer") took Marin to task for her Saturday column about last week's move toward legalizing civil unions in Illinois.

Marin pointed out in her "Sun-Times" piece that Illinois Senate President John Cullerton, House Speaker Mike Madigan and Governor Patrick Quinn are all Catholic.

Des Moines bishop: Stop late term abortions


From The Des Moines Register:

Diocese of Des Moines Bishop Richard Pates today released a letter urging people to work against a late-term abortion doctor from Nebraska from expanding into Iowa.

The letter was written in November and first sent to parishioners. It was released to the general public today in response to news coverage of a legislative effort to pass a law that further restrict late-term abortions in Iowa.

The Diocese of Des Moines Catholic includes 82 parishes in 23 counties in central and southwest Iowa.


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February 10-23, 2017