Charles Kenny at Businessweek has written an important essay that debunks Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan's and his fellow Republicans' notion that private charity, especially churches, need to bear the brunt of financing the care of the poor. Like Ryan's budget, the math doesn't add up. Private charity cannot supplant federal and state programs that create the safety net for the poor. It's that simple.
House Republican Congressman Paul Ryan, a Catholic, has recently discovered poverty and has vowed to do something about it. He reintroduced a couple of modest ideas that might help the poor. Some progressive Catholics did their best to applaud Ryan's nascent initiatives. Others just rolled our eyes at the hollowness and political expediency of Ryan's actions.
The final two-plus years of the Obama presidency look to be a torturous obstacle course with little or nothing to be accomplished and repeated attempts to roll back those legislative pieces that are already in place. The 2014 election appears bleak for Democrats, who may even lose control of the Senate. The resulting Congress is almost certain to be even more recalcitrant in working with President Barack Obama than the current one.
NCR Today: Why are women and children being detained in New Mexico? Also: the expulsion of an Australian priest after allegations of abuse; retired priest rescued from harbor.
In July, Paul Ryan unveiled a new anti-poverty plan that is an about-face for Ryan, who's known for proposing budget cuts that hurt the poor.
Arkansas Bishop Anthony Taylor's July 25 statement is worth the read, as he has firsthand experience of what's happening in Central America.
For the last four years I have served as a member of the Committee on Migration of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. In that capacity I visited El Salvador two months ago as part of a Regional Consultation on Migration looking into the plight of refugees fleeing violence and extreme poverty in Central America.
Given the heated criticism leveled at the Wisconsin congressman's previous budget plans, it should come as no surprise that his new report already has the political blogosphere buzzing.
Commentary: When politicians like Paul Ryan oppose modest efforts to raise a federal minimum wage, charity is not enough to fill the gap created by the economy.
When modern economic markets and Catholic social justice teaching are taken into consideration, any talk of a "minimum" wage becomes a moral understatement.