Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Hello. The lights are on. Is anyone at home?

Yesterday’s Denver Post carried these stories side by side with no acknowledgement of the irony. Congressional investigators learned that business receiving funds from the stimulus funds owed more than 750 million dollars in unpaid taxes at the time they received the government funds. At the same time, GOP House members proposed to cut an almost identical amount from the budget for WIC, the women’s infants and children nutrition and health care program! Hello. The lights are on. Is anyone at home?
The schizophrenia in our beloved nation is palpable. I use that term advisedly. The Mayo Clinic provides this definition.
Schizophrenia is a severe brain disorder in which people interpret
reality abnormally. Schizophrenia may result in some combination of
hallucinations, delusions and disordered thinking and behavior. The ability
of people with schizophrenia to function normally and to care for themselves
tends to deteriorate over time. Schizophrenia refers to a disruption of the
usual balance of emotions and thinking. Schizophrenia is a chronic condition,
requiring lifelong treatment.

The diagnosis is not difficult to make. Delusions and disordered thinking characterize many American voters leading them to vote against their own interests. They hallucinate they are actually represented by candidates they elect. As a result of this disordered thinking, the average middle class person is unable to function normally and care for themselves.

The symptoms include the delusion we can balance the budget without new taxes. Delusional voters believe it is in their middle class interests to protect the uber-wealthy from paying their fair share. This disruption in balanced thinking leads to other wild hallucinations.

They are deluded that when young men and women who volunteer to fight never-ending wars will receive the medical care they require. Yet it took the Court of Appeals to order the Veteran’s Administration to provide adequate mental health treatment to veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan who are killing themselves at shamefully high rates.

Politicians have played on the imbalanced fears of voter schizophrenia, convincing them we can wage a war on drugs, taking millions of POW’s without spending the money necessary to lock them up and throw away the key. So this week it took the US Supreme Court to order if you lock them up, you have to pay the bill to provide for their basic needs, like food, shelter and health care.
This communal mental illness allows them to buy tickets to spaghetti dinners and raffles to raise few dollars for cancer treatment while voting for candidates who oppose health care reform. Schizoid masses are up in arms about what they call “Obama-care” even though their icons Newt Gingrich, Jon Huntsman, Mitt Romney and Tim Pawlenty have supported its keystone provisions. Even in their hallucinations those voters can distinguish black from white and that likely causes many to have other forms of disordered thinking. They nod furiously when Pawlenty says he alone will tell the truth about what has to be done but has only his “truth” to tell to the middle class.
The delusions lead to an expectation they can allow the gap between the rich and themselves to grow ever bigger without assigning their own children to a future as indentured servants.

As a pastor, I don’t even want to begin talking about the delusions they experience while reading the Bible! OMG! Talking snakes and donkeys, search parties looking for the mythical Ark, imagining a burning lake into which those who don’t know magic words are cast. They close their eyes and minds and see a loving God who destroys , hates and pillages.

As the Mayo Clinic advises, Schizophrenia is a chronic condition, requiring lifelong treatment. Without treatment the delusions will worsen and the ability of voters with schizophrenia to function normally and to care for themselves tends to deteriorate.

But as you have been told time after time…the first step is admitting you have a problem. Then you really have to want treatment before it can work!

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