There are two thoughtful articles in this week's issue of Time magazine. The 1st, Joe Klein's essay, is about what he calls 2nd Commandment Christians. He shows us some republicans who are running for president and offer us an unusual mixture of moral conservatism and a commitment to social justice issues. Such candidates rarely make it to 2nd base, but it's encouraging to see that American politics is branching out in its consideration of what Christianity stands for; not just sexual morality, but economic and social justice, environmental responsibility, and a commitment to breaking down the racial and economic barriers that divide us.
The 2nd article focuses on the hypocrisy of the left, and their blind involvement in 'carbon credits' schemes. As Krauhammer rightly points out, these schemes are 'a way for the rich to export the real costs and sacrifices of pollution control to the poorer segments of humanity'. What a laugh to see Al Gore and Leonardo DiCaprio standing at the Oscars watching an ad that encourages people to take mass transit - and of course the audience erupts in loud applause, even though none of those in attendance have been on a bus since the moon landing.
Eric Berne's "Games People Play" speaks of ways we deceptively relate to one another. I'd argue that just as often we deceptively relate to ourselves, and that one of the ways we do so is by elevating our loyalty to causes to the status of good behavior. In such a paradigm, it doesn't matter if my house uses 20x more electricity than the average American home (which itself uses much more than the global average) - the important thing is that I'm FOR energy conservation.
James actually talked about this in the Bible and he put it something like this: Talk is cheap - so is writing a check - what's needed as an actual change in the way you live. Of course I'm paraphrasing, but that's the essence of it. I appreciate Krauthammer's voice, inviting us to move beyond talking and writing checks, to actually changing the way we live.