Thursday, May 24, 2012

"And Jesus went with him" - Man-Made Poverty

A Tokyo Facility...

Man-Made Poverty

The theme we have to tackle is poverty and wealth in addition to teaching of God.
Christian views on poverty and wealth

There have been a variety of Christian attitudes towards materialism and wealth. John Cobb, Jr. argues that the "economism that rules the West and through it much of the East" is directly opposed to traditional Christian doctrine. Cobb invokes the teaching of Jesus that "man cannot serve both God and Mammon (wealth)". He asserts that it is obvious that "Western society is organized in the service of wealth" and thus wealth has triumphed over God in the West...

At one end of the spectrum is a view which casts wealth and materialism as an evil to be avoided and even combatted. At the other end is a view which casts prosperity and well-being as a blessing from God...
You may get out of poverty as long as you do not make any others unhappy and poor.  And, you know it is impossible.  So, according to the teaching of God, you cannot be rich.

Let's check the state of poverty in the US as it is apparently forced poverty but not Christian voluntary poverty.
The facts about poverty in America
by Robert Rector02/07/2012
The American work ethic has eroded. Even in the best of economic times, the poor work very little.  Worse, marriage has collapsed in low-income communities.  At the outset of the War on Poverty, 7 percent of children were born outside marriage; today, the annual rate is 42 percent.  The disappearance of marriage is the principal cause of child poverty and welfare dependence today.

Tragically, the welfare system is more like a “safety bog” than a safety net.  Serving as an alternative to self-support, welfare has eroded work and crushed family structure.  Rather than lifting up the poor, the welfare state has pushed them down into intergenerational dependence and social marginality.
Let's also check the state of poverty in the world as it is apparently forced poverty but not Christian voluntary poverty.
2012 World Hunger and Poverty Facts and Statistics 
As the figure below shows, the number of hungry people has increased since 1995-97.. The increase has been due to three factors: 1) neglect of agriculture relevant to very poor people by governments and international agencies; 2) the current worldwide economic crisis, and 3) the significant increase of food prices in the last several years which has been devastating to those with only a few dollars a day to spend. 925 million people is 13.6 percent of the estimated world population of 6.8 billion. Nearly all of the undernourished are in developing countries.
In round numbers there are 7 billion people in the world. Thus, with an estimated 925 million hungry people in the world, 13.1 percent, or almost 1 in 7 people are hungry.
Does the world produce enough food to feed everyone? 
The world produces enough food to feed everyone. World agriculture produces 17 percent more calories per person today than it did 30 years ago, despite a 70 percent population increase. This is enough to provide everyone in the world with at least 2,720 kilocalories (kcal) per person per day according to the most recent estimate that we could find.(FAO 2002, p.9). The principal problem is that many people in the world do not have sufficient land to grow, or income to purchase, enough food.

So, it is a man-made calamity, poverty.  Governments in the world are responsible.  Voters that elect politicians to manage governments are responsible.  Mostly, governments of rich countries and voters of rich countries are responsible.

But the rich are gaining momentum year after year nowadays.
The Rich Are Now Richer Than Before the 2008 Credit Meltdown
Steven Bertoni
Money Talks
Forbes Magazine dated August 08, 2011

A study from Capgemini and Bank of America Merrill Lynch showed that the world's population of high-networth individuals (HNWI), with $1 million or more in investable assets, jumped 8.3% over the last year to a total of 10.9 million people. That number is up from the 2007 tally of 10.1 million tycoons.

Not only are there more rich, but they're also richer. Their financial wealth jumped 9.7% over the last year to $42.7 trillion. Meanwhile, the U.S. GDP grew 1.9% in the first quarter of 2011, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce....

Many might agree that Obama's stimulus package isn't creating jobs, but for a lucky few, it is creating a ton of wealth. Still, the U.S. has fewer millionaires than it did before the crash.

And the rich hold political power to maintain their wealth at the sacrifice of the poor.
Why the Rich Are Getting Richer
American Politics and the Second Gilded Age
By Robert C. Lieberman
January/February 2011

...This was not an anomaly but rather a continuation of a 40-year trend of ballooning incomes at the very top and stagnant incomes in the middle and at the bottom. The share of total income going to the top one percent has increased from roughly eight percent in the 1960s to more than 20 percent today.

This is what the political scientists Jacob Hacker and Paul Pierson call the "winner-take-all economy." It is not a picture of a healthy society. Such a level of economic inequality, not seen in the United States since the eve of the Great Depression, bespeaks a political economy in which the financial rewards are increasingly concentrated among a tiny elite and whose risks are borne by an increasingly exposed and unprotected middle class. Income inequality in the United States is higher than in any other advanced industrial democracy and by conventional measures comparable to that in countries such as Ghana, Nicaragua, and Turkmenistan. It breeds political polarization, mistrust, and resentment between the haves and the have-nots and tends to distort the workings of a democratic political system in which money increasingly confers political voice and power...

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Mar 5:24 And Jesus went with him; and much people followed him, and thronged him.
Mar 5:25 And a certain woman, which had an issue of blood twelve years,
Mar 5:26 And had suffered many things of many physicians, and had spent all that she had, and was nothing bettered, but rather grew worse,
Mar 5:27 When she had heard of Jesus, came in the press behind, and touched his garment.
Mar 5:28 For she said, If I may touch but his clothes, I shall be whole.
Mar 5:29 And straightway the fountain of her blood was dried up; and she felt in her body that she was healed of that plague.
Mar 5:30 And Jesus, immediately knowing in himself that virtue had gone out of him, turned him about in the press, and said, Who touched my clothes?
Mar 5:31 And his disciples said unto him, Thou seest the multitude thronging thee, and sayest thou, Who touched me?
Mar 5:32 And he looked round about to see her that had done this thing.
Mar 5:33 But the woman fearing and trembling, knowing what was done in her, came and fell down before him, and told him all the truth.
Mar 5:34 And he said unto her, Daughter, thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace, and be whole of thy plague.