The timing of the intervention of British church leaders into the welfare debate couldn't have been more perfect, nor can their residence in cloud cuckoo land be more apparent. I would humbly suggest that these spiritual leaders take up reading the Bible instead of the Communist Manifesto and spend more time saving souls for the hereafter rather than increasing welfare dependency in the here and now.
At a time when the UN released its report into human rights abuses, including the persecution of Christians, in that socialist paradise known as North Korea and with the Venezuelan and Ukrainian people rising up against their socialist oppressors, the church leaders in Great Britain are calling for more socialism.
One of the scourges of modern Britain and the main driver of crime, violence and domestic strife is welfare dependency. I have deliberately excluded poverty at this point in the essay because the word itself is being deliberately misused.
The agenda driven political class, and now the clergy, use the term 'relative poverty' despite the material goods partaken of by the so called 'poor'. This creates an illusion of poverty and thus helps guarantee a constituency of loyal voters using the deadly sin of envy. (More on the use of relative poverty later)
Church leaders have taken to promoting their new socialist creed on the television or in the media for the simple reason that if they restricted it to sermons in their churches nobody would get the message. Preaching to an empty church can be dispiriting so in order to raise their spirits and keep what semblance relevance they have left, church leaders are promoting 'free stuff' for the so called 'poor'.
It is becoming more obvious with every utterance from our richly adorned bishops and priests that they have taken a leaf out of the socialist handbook by promoting welfare dependency and actively appealing to the feckless in order to justify their existence.
Following on from the openly Marxist former Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, and his equally left wing successor, Justin Welby, the leader of Great Britain's Roman Catholics has jumped on the 'poverty' bandwagon also.
Not to be outdone by his Anglican counterparts the Archbishop of Westminster, Vincent Nicholas, has expressed his opposition to welfare reforms in concert with twenty six Bishops and leaders from the Methodists, Quakers and Reformed Churches.
(See a previous post on Marxist theologian Rowan 'The Hippy' Williams here)
By exaggerating the scale of the problem and indulging in emotive language these unscrupulous so called holy men are behaving like poverty pimps who would rather see people languishing on welfare handouts instead of having the dignity that comes with work and supporting themselves.
It is unbecoming of the men of God to be joining the propagandists of the left, led by the BBC, to portray Great Britain as mired in Dickensian or third world levels of poverty and destitution. It simply isn't true. It would be foolish to deny that there is poverty but it is not as widespread and desperate as the agenda driven left and the clergy would have us all believe.
In an overtly party political outpouring, the men of God are saying that "welfare reform is a national crisis causing malnutrition and poverty because of delay and punitive sanctions against benefit claimants."
To intimate that the government is reforming welfare out malice or spite or to deliberately harm poor people is outrageous, it is also a disgraceful exaggeration bordering on outright lying. The clergymen involved in this willful deceit need to get into that confessional box at the earliest opportunity and seek absolution for their sins.
It must be borne in mind that one of the reforms they are referring to consists of limiting of welfare benefit 'entitlements' to five hundred pounds per week for which claimants don't even have to get out of bed. That's around eight hundred dollars per week to our American friends. Nice work if you can get it.
"People are having to choose between heating or eating" claim the holy men of God. They fail to mention that the government has deliberately inflated heating bills in order to fight Man Made Global Warming, now renamed as 'Combating Climate Change'.
Sensible people on the planet have come to accept that this is a new religion for the gullible and the emotionally vulnerable which uses environmentalism to mask the imposition of global socialism. The men of God really shouldn't be indulging in this kind of willful deception if they want to go to heaven.
Those of us who have actual experience of living among benefit claimants would have worded that statement differently in the interests of accuracy. "People are having to choose between eating or smoking cigarettes, drinking alcohol, gambling, smoking dope and having babies", would be much more applicable.
If this comes across as cruel or exaggerated then I suggest that cynics, hand wringing lefties and Christ's vicars on earth read this article by the BBC's favourite whinging, whining lefty, Yasmin Alibai-Brown.
The corrosive effect of idleness and welfare dependency on the human spirit is obviously deemed acceptable by the clergy and infinitely more preferable to their client group than working for a living and supporting themselves and their families.
Moving people from idleness and dependency into work is what welfare reform is intended to achieve, so who but agenda driven socialists and cynical poverty pimps would oppose that noble ideal.
The existence of welfare benefit ghettos is a disgrace to humanity therefore one would expect the clergy to support any attempt to reform a broken system that encourages their continuation.
More information on welfare ghettos, where half of all adults are on benefits, here.
To conclude, it is worth noting that the poverty referred to by the political establishment is not actual poverty but 'relative poverty'.
This is a measure conjured up to justify redistribution of wealth which could have thought up by Karl Marx himself. As with everything Marxist they can't even get that right - they now try to exclude better off people from the equation in order to facilitate the continued use of the word 'poverty', without which they have no reason to exist.
Using this measure in wealthier countries with a higher levels of income, such as Dubai, would require people with all the trappings of prosperity to be classed as poor. This is plainly ridiculous therefore poverty is now classed as sixty percent of the median.
It is vitally important that the agenda driven redistributors of wealth continue to have the word 'poverty' available for justification purposes regardless of its accuracy. Using their own measure, the poorest people in Great Britain are prosperous compared to their counterparts in developing countries.
They could equally use the term 'relative prosperity' as it means the same thing but it couldn't be used by the poverty industry to justify redistribution.
Poverty in Great Britain could be eliminated or at least vastly reduced simply by getting rid of the spin and redefining it:
People are not in poverty if they live in a house.
People are not in poverty if they smoke, drink alcohol, gamble or take drugs.
People are not in poverty if they are overweight through eating junk food.
People are not in poverty if they eat out at all.
People are not in poverty if they take vacations.
People are not in poverty if they own a flat screen TV's, Xbox's, mobile IPhones, designer clothes or sneakers.
People are not in poverty if they have lots of babies.
And so on and so forth. They are not poor in the real sense, they just have less 'stuff' than people whom earn more.
This list would result in poverty being eliminated or at least astronomically reduced overnight but it would also cause palpitations and exploding heads among the hand wringing, bleeding heart socialist poverty pimps that infest British political life like a disease.
For those who live in the real world this is what poverty looks like.
My near neighbours in Nairobi's Kabira slums.
My near neighbours near Santa Cruz, Bombay.
My very near neighbours in Kapishera, New Delhi, more here and here.
The Archbishop of Canterbury lives here in Lambeth Place.
The Roman Catholic Archbishop of Westminster has decided not to sell his country residence.