1 Trillion Dollars — Are You Kidding Me?

One of the most oft-repeated talking points I’ve heard in the last couple of days revolves around the cost of healthcare reform. An e-mail showing you what 1 trillion dollars looks like in dollar bills is designed to make you incensed that anyone would propose such a huge government program/takeover. How dare our representatives spend 1 trillion dollars on healthcare reform? The e-mail goes on to encourage me to throw the bums out when they come up for re-election.

My initial response was kind of knee-jerk. We know that there are two great commands in the Bible. Love God and love your neighbor as yourself. Extending healthcare to 47 million uninsured people is an example of loving your neighbor. We were sad that so many Christians we know preferred to keep our broken healthcare system just the way it was by putting pressure of fellow Christians to not support the bill. All 5 representatives from Oklahoma (4 Republicans and 1 Democrat) voted Nay on the bill. Our position is that we will now be working to vote them out, especially John Sullivan.

But the more I thought about it, the madder I became.

When George W. Bush and the Republicans passed tax cuts that by and large benefitted only the richest Americans (in the meantime the middle class was losing buying power and economic prosperity compared to the upper classes), they did so knowing that they were borrowing from Social Security and running up a projected 10-year deficit of $2.3 trillion dollars (http://www.commondreams.org/views04/1022-26.htm). The assumption was that real estate speculation and financial services profiteering would go on forever, thereby erasing the projected deficit.
Now the greatest recession since the Great Depression has wiped out all of the savings and tax revenues counted on to pay for the Bush tax cuts and we’re left with 1 trillion dollars of deficits caused directly by the Bush tax cuts.
Who would Jesus spend 1 trillion dollars on? Helping the rich get richer or helping the poor, the bankrupt, and the unemployed get health insurance?

Proverbs 19:17 One who is gracious to a poor man lends to the LORD, And He will repay him for his good deed.

Matthew 10:42 “And whoever in the name of a disciple gives to one of these little ones even a cup of cold water to drink, truly I say to you, he shall not lose his reward.”
Matthew 25:40 “The King will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.'”

I’m so disappointed in my fellow Evangelicals. This one is a no brainer.


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