Who’s Coming to Dinner?

And Jesus said “Give away your power.  Give away your wealth.  Believe in God.  Believe also in me.  Believe in people. Proclaim good news to the poor and justice to the oppressed.”   And they opened their homes to him: tax collectors, widows, men and women of little means, immigrants and foreigners and heathens. Homeless, Jesus lived and preached among them.  “Believe in people,” Jesus said, “believe in God.  Believe in me.”   Offered power, he refused it.  People sitting in high places were enraged but Jesus mounted no defense.  And he went to die without a protest, like a lamb lead to the slaughter.  And he continued to confound them.

It Could Have Gone This Way

And the rich young ruler asked Jesus, “Teacher, what must I do to be saved?”  And Jesus said, “Sell all you have, give it to the poor, and come, follow me.”  And the rich young ruler did as Jesus commanded, investing his wealth in subversive ways.  He built up the broken, brought the poor to great feasts, honored the old and the sick and the gay in the synagogue and in public.  And the Roman authorities arrested him as a political radical, a disturber of peace and he said unto them “You have said we disrupt the peace.  But lo, we are making it.”  And the Romans, ashamed at this disgrace, beat him and kept him in custody.  His friends, the poor and the weary and weak, remembered the vision Jesus had given him.  And they continued in that way, and all were built up, and lo, none were cast aside or turned away.

(Mark 10 re-imagined).

The Politics of Giving (as Illuminated by Bruce Wayne, Peter Parker, and H&R Block)

Bruce Wayne, as depicted in the series.

You look at this infographic and you think “Wow, Spider-man pays more federal income tax than Bruce Wayne.  Doesn’t seem fair.”

And certainly, it’s not.

At the same time, look at Bruce’s charitable giving.  One could make the case that he is giving more to the kinds of causes that the government uses taxes for than Spidey ever will.  So here’s what we do:  take away charitable deductions for any cause that isn’t related to human services or infrastructure.  Problem solved. (Oh, and fix the capital gains tax so that it’s taxed like income.)

Rebuilding the Future of American Cities

America’s great cities were left in economic free fall, with concentrated poverty, unemployment, high crime rates, failing public schools and severely deteriorating physical infrastructure, including roads, mass transit and parks. Academics and policy makers agreed that cities were irrelevant to America’s economic future; they would become places for poor minorities who could not afford to move to the suburbs. Urban policy became code for social-welfare policy.

More at Atlantic.

Dear Delta Thermo Energy: We Hope So, Too

If you search for Delta Thermo Energy’s website, this is what you’ll find:

Interestingly, that’s what DTE is basically also saying about the future site of their recently-approved and controversial Waste to Energy Plant:

Other details about the company on the web are sparing.  The LinkedIn profile is sparse, but we do learn that the CEO, Rob V. (Rob Van Naardan), used to work for a private equity firm. Mr. Van Naardan, if you’re reading this, I’d sincerely like to talk to you about emissions issues and I’d love to learn as much as possible about your process.  I’d also like to connect you and your company with the Air Quality Partnership of Lehigh Valley – Berks.  Given your committment to near-zero emissions, DTE and AQP likely have some interests in common.