We have two competing systems of thought for how our nation needs to work, to realize its dreams and fulfill the promises of the Declaration of Independence.
One system focuses on wealth, the building of wealth and the protection of wealth - a system that our Founding Mothers and Fathers knew well, a system from which they sought escape, a system they would not repeat here.
The other system focuses on wellbeing, the mutual responsibility we all have for one another, to maximize the benefits of life here and now and provide protection for those who need it, whatever the reason may be, because at the heart of a wellbeing system is generosity without condition and kindness without questions.
In the wealth-system, some do exceedingly well, many struggle, and a few are plunged into misery. The wealth-system is very good at wealth for the few, and poverty, or near-poverty for the many.
The wellbeing system sees to it that everyone enjoys a minimum of good life - wages, benefits, education and retirement. It's a system that produces lots of wealth, but not at the expense of the many.
Right now, these two systems are locked in mortal battle for the soul of our nation.
Huge amounts of wealth are poured into promoting and protecting the wealth system, telling huge lies about how good it will be for all of us once the wealth system is fully in place, everything privatized, and big government replaced by big business. For the time being, the wealth system has prevailed, and we see its fruits clearly: wealth, great wealth, for the few, a shrinking middle class, and the spread of poverty - here and abroad, as America's gigantic wealth-system sucks life out of the world, for that's how wealth-systems function, like parasites.
There are plenty of people right now, people of faith, various philosophies, politicians and professors who see clearly the goodness and power of a wellbeing system, and they labor mightily for America's better day.
The choice is up to us - to buy the lies of the wealth-system and be cheated of life, or to embrace the wellbeing system and share life, abundantly, with one another.
The wellbeing system is biblical, what the prophets envisioned and worked for, what Jesus offers and gave his life to raise up and what the early church practiced. To be faithful to Jesus is to embrace the wellbeing system - wherein the mandates of creation are honored and the goodness of the covenant practiced - wherein the earth is cared for and all creatures honored, and the biblical "trinity of human need," the widow, the orphan and the alien, is welcomed, loved and cared for.
That's how I see it, and to that end, that's how I live.