The Cutting Edge
by Ed Knudson
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James Comey: The Fall of a Niebuhrian  5/15/2017  (30)

Management by Terror: Stalin and Trump  5/10/2017  (52)

The Cynical Use of Abortion by Politicians  5/6/2017  (58)

NCC Urges Churches to Refrain From Intervening in Political Campaigns  5/4/2017  (61)

Where Your Tax Dollar Goes  4/18/2017  (117)

Talking It Through  4/15/2017  (119)

False Community Consciousness and Local Radio  4/1/2017  (148)

Politicians Can Use Nostalgia to Manipulate the Minds and Hearts of People  3/31/2017  (143)

Two Forms of Governance: Big Corporations Want to Snoop about Your Internet Behavior  3/27/2017  (139)

Obamacare is Not Imploding, Can Be Improved  3/24/2017  (159)

The Soul-Sucking, Attention-Eating Black Hole of the Trump Presidency  3/24/2017  (155)

An Avalanche of Absurdities: Chris Hedges on the Rise of Trump and American Fascism  3/21/2017  (160)

Of Course Obama Wiretapped Trump  3/21/2017  (169)

Trump Glorifies American Militarism with German Leader, Embarrassing Himself  3/18/2017  (172)

Most of Trump's Voters are Not Poor, but Regular Old Republicans  3/18/2017  (166)

Robert Mercer and Big Money Chose Trump to be President, not the People  3/17/2017  (180)

Stirring Up Muslim Hatred; The Need for a New Election  3/16/2017  (163)

Old Republican Tactic: Stoke Fear of Crime  3/13/2017  (208)

White People are Hurting Themselves  3/11/2017  (206)

Basic Civics Lesson for Libertarians  3/8/2017  (214)

Public Trust: Post-truth is Pre-fascim  3/8/2017  (281)

Martin Marty Center Publishes Column in Support of Disgraced White Nationalist, Milo Yiannopoulos  2/28/2017  (304)

Trump is Not a Normal Politician and Was Not Elected Fair and Square  2/21/2017  (538)

Trump is Using Immigrants as a Political Scapegoat: Very Bad  2/20/2017  (272)

To Dominate Politics, Business Needs Religious Extremism  2/13/2017  (281)

No Vision or Leadership from National Council of Churches  2/9/2017  (307)

Post-Factual Politics  2/8/2017  (287)

Trump May Want a Terrorist Attack  2/7/2017  (298)

For the Right Wing: Only Christians Deserve Religious Freedom  2/6/2017  (253)

Where Are the Reverends in Justice Movements?  2/3/2017  (322)

Trump is Centralizing Power: Resist Fascism  1/30/2017  (351)

Cry for Our Country: Spontaneous Demonstrations across America  1/28/2017  (319)

Truth in the Trump Era  1/23/2017  (328)

"We Will Not Go Away, Welcome to Your First Day"  1/21/2017  (347)

Violence, Racism, Authoritarianism Characterize Trump's Inaugural Speech  1/21/2017  (404)

First Things Doesn't Like that Trump Surrounds Himself with Prosperity Gospelers, Snake Oil Salesmen  1/17/2017  (402)

Newt Gingrich Gets Trump Wrong: Why Southerners Hate the Federal Government  12/27/2016  (360)

From Peace on Earth to an Election Based on Violence  12/23/2016  (368)

Bill O'Reilly Admits the Truth: For Republicans Elections are All about Race  12/23/2016  (431)

No Mandate for Trump, Says Jeff Merkley  12/22/2016  (387)

2010 Prediction: White People with Self-destructive Fantasies will Elect a Figure Like Trump  12/17/2016  (361)

Gore Vidal on Ayn Rand: God is "I"  12/14/2016  (351)

Russian Atheistic Ideas Now Dominate the American Political System  12/14/2016  (307)

Trump Over Performed the Most in Counties with the Highest Drug, Alcohol and Suicide Mortality Rates  12/9/2016  (322)

Back to the Catacombs for the Real Church  12/8/2016  (376)

A Prayer for Standing Rock  11/12/2016  (343)

Trump Will Be Impeached within a Year  11/11/2016  (391)

David Brooks on the Authoritarian Anti-Politics of Trump  11/10/2016  (365)

An Anti-Trump Resistance Movement Begins with Protesters in Streets Nationwide  11/10/2016  (359)

Hillary Lost Because of Her Husband's Economic Policies  11/9/2016  (381)

Evangelicals Elect a Racist Pervert as President  11/9/2016  (398)

Very Serious National Decline  11/9/2016  (373)

The Silly Controversy about Hillary's Emails  11/7/2016  (388)

Trump Offers to Rescue Lower Income White People in a Secular Rapture  11/2/2016  (347)

The Crisis of Conservative Intellectuals  11/1/2016  (397)

James Comey Should Resign or Be Fired  10/30/2016  (378)

Traveling Luther's Life 500 Years Later  10/24/2016  (402)

The Death of Tom Hayden  10/24/2016  (413)

False Superiority Syndrome: A Terrible Disease of the European White Mind  7/22/2016  (733)

Delusion: Ben Carson Thinks Saul Alinsky Worshipped the Devil  7/20/2016  (530)

Understanding the Context for Preaching  7/16/2016  (518)

Journalists Must Treat Trump Differently  7/15/2016  (510)

Reading Grace in History through a Black Lens  6/26/2016  (515)

A Dark Day for the UK  6/24/2016  (523)

Debbie Wasserman-Schultz Has Got to Go to Unite Democrats Against the Racist, Trump  5/27/2016  (593)

John Caputo On Divine Sovereignty and the Weakness of God  5/23/2016  (533)

A Corrupt Form of Christianity is Destroying the Republican Party  4/5/2016  (666)

President Obama: 'We are Easter People'  3/31/2016  (624)

Evangelicals are Not Voting Trump, Jacksonians Are  3/31/2016  (608)

The Modern War on Drugs Began as Nixon's Racist Assault on Black People  3/24/2016  (627)

Listen to a Black Man Standing Silently at a Trump Rally  3/15/2016  (628)

Who Should be President? Strict Father or Nurturing Parent  3/3/2016  (663)

Trump is a Fraud Who is Playing the American People as Suckers, Says Romney  3/3/2016  (740)

Asked about Donald Trump's Wall, Pope Francis Suggests He 'Is Not Christian'  2/18/2016  (672)

How the Portland Media Help Make Domestic Terrorists into Heroes  2/6/2016  (635)

Flint, Michigan: Death Camp City  1/22/2016  (683)

Privatization of Public Land is a Bad Idea  1/22/2016  (717)

Peace Lutheran in Burns, Oregon, Requests Prayers  1/20/2016  (764)

How the Iraq War Created ISIS: Crucial Information for Understanding Terrorism  12/6/2015  (770)

Leading Republican Candidate Donald Trump: How Stupid are the People of Iowa?  11/13/2015  (729)

CNN Repeats Stupid Claim by Pew Research that Religious 'Nones' Dominate Democratic Party  11/5/2015  (740)

First Things has become Relevant to Only One Region of the Country: the South  11/2/2015  (774)

Tell Ben Carson to Give Up His Presidential Campaign  10/27/2015  (755)

Corporate-Funded Think Tanks have Created an Angry, Destructive Politics  10/24/2015  (720)

Protestants Need a Pope  9/30/2015  (784)

R.R. Reno at First Things is Disappointed by Pope Francis  9/25/2015  (849)

Matt Taibbi on the GOP Clown Car  8/15/2015  (912)

Pray to be Filled with Awe and Contemplation  8/12/2015  (838)

Jurgen Habermas: A New Possibility for Europe  7/21/2015  (1012)

The Republican Party has become an Agent of Southern Religion, Racism and Anti-Unionism  7/20/2015  (846)

Historic Day: Gay Marriage Affirmed by Supreme Court in All 50 States  6/26/2015  (857)

Gun Manufacturers Cannot Be Christian says Pope Francis  6/22/2015  (923)

Pope Francis Teaches Us about Climate Change and the Moral Imperative to Act  6/20/2015  (952)

Cornel West Wows a Conservative University Audience  5/4/2015  (1155)

Police Violence in Baltimore  4/29/2015  (1166)

Bonhoeffer's Vision: An Outcast Church on the Margins of Society  4/25/2015  (1016)

The Debate Over Cornel West  4/21/2015  (1037)

Nebraska Doesn't Believe in the Free Market for Its Electricity  3/29/2015  (1104)

The New Political Mission of the Historic Protestant Church  3/16/2015  (1103)

When Fascism Comes to America; What Love of Country Really Means  3/1/2015  (1126)

Senators Marco Rubio and Joni Ernst Don't Know the Difference between Sunni and Shia Islam  2/28/2015  (1772)

The Shameful Media Attack on John Kitzhaber and Cylvia Hayes  2/18/2015  (1554)

Francis Says God Loves the Marginalized  2/16/2015  (1074)

Rand Paul Disqualifies Himself  2/4/2015  (1133)

Oxfam Report: How the Wealthy Get Their Money by Not Working or Paying Taxes  1/26/2015  (1101)

John Boehner Wants The U.S. to go to War with Iran  1/21/2015  (1115)

Martin Luther on Charlie Hebdo: Sick Secularism and Billy Graham  1/14/2015  (3142)

Whose Speech is Actually Free?  1/14/2015  (1173)

Historic Protestant Speech is Not Free in America Today  1/14/2015  (1335)

Wall Street has Bought Itself a Congress  12/15/2014  (1152)

Democrats Move to Encourage an Elizabeth Warren Candidancy  12/10/2014  (1167)

Iowa Lutherans: Don't Vote for Joni Ernst  10/27/2014  (2551)

Wendell Berry and Incarnational Theology  10/21/2014  (1388)

Did God Kill Jesus? Moltmann on Anticipated Terror and Joy  10/10/2014  (1372)

Stop the Oil Train Bombs  10/2/2014  (1363)

The Terrible Self-Righteousness of George Weigel at First Things  9/19/2014  (1369)

Violence All Across the World, including Ferguson, Missouri  8/15/2014  (1381)

Reagan's View of History Still Prevails  8/15/2014  (1322)

Nick Hanauer: Beware, Fellow Plutocrats, the Pitchforks are Coming  8/13/2014  (1356)

Blowing Up Jonah: The Political Use of Religious Symbols  8/12/2014  (1482)

Listen to Rabbi Henry Siegman on Gaza: Killing Innocents  8/1/2014  (1311)

The Lost Iraq War  7/30/2014  (1295)

It is Not Anti-Semitic to Question Israel's Right to Exist as an Ethnic State   7/24/2014  (1267)

Republicans Elect Mark Walker: A Racist, Blasphemous, Baptist Pastor  7/23/2014  (1736)

There is No Religious Left  7/22/2014  (1286)

Crisis in Ukraine: A Bit of Background  7/18/2014  (1231)

Teachers Turn Against Obama  7/12/2014  (1436)

The Trouble With Brain Science  7/12/2014  (1325)

The Roman Catholic Supreme Court Decides What is 'Sincere' Religious Belief   7/1/2014  (1380)

Karl Polanyi and the Stark Utopianism of Market Fundamentalism  7/1/2014  (1387)

Corporate Provided Health Care Has To Go  6/30/2014  (1320)

Brookings Report on Economic Justice and the Future of Religious Progressives  4/25/2014  (1401)

Coal Train Crisis Abates   4/16/2014  (1441)

Gay Marriage Ban Ending in England and Wales on Saturday  3/29/2014  (1444)

Obama Should Have Prosecuted the Bush Administration for War Crimes  3/28/2014  (1439)

A False Gospel: Corporate Christianity  3/27/2014  (1425)

Koch Brothers are Creating Their Own Political Party  1/26/2014  (1570)

Social Justice in New York City  1/1/2014  (1585)

God is a God of Freedom: Pope Francis and Liberation Theology  12/21/2013  (1584)

America, America, the Country that Kills Its Prophets  11/23/2013  (1750)

Thinking about a New Protestantism  11/21/2013  (1613)

Hysterical Anti-Communism: Billy Graham Urged the Killing of a Million Vietnamese  11/21/2013  (2421)

The Next President will be a Woman and a Methodist, but not Hillary  11/11/2013  (1616)

Regular Republicans are Beginning to Reject Their Leaders  11/11/2013  (1575)

Pastors: Help Your People Understand Obamacare  11/6/2013  (1641)

Mothers and Grandmothers on Abortion  11/5/2013  (1732)

Why Obamacare is a Political Con Job  10/30/2013  (1786)

Very Disturbing Governance by Media Manipulation  10/4/2013  (1852)

A Reformation Pope  10/2/2013  (1710)

When the Big Money Mafia Rule  10/1/2013  (1775)

Obama Wins Shutdown Battle  10/1/2013  (1921)

Samantha Power: Protection of the Innocent  9/11/2013  (1907)

Pope Francis to Meet with Gustavo Gutierrez, Founder of Liberation Theology  9/11/2013  (1882)

Apocalypse: Life Beyond Empire and Environmental Destruction  9/9/2013  (1757)

Joining Obama Against Himself?  9/5/2013  (1882)

Arab Spring: Transfer of Power in Syria  9/4/2013  (1835)

Religious Conflict in the History of Syria  9/3/2013  (1815)

Hunger Games: The Divide and Conquer Marketing Strategy of Fox News  8/7/2013  (2036)

The Terrible Mendacity of Stanley Kurtz  8/5/2013  (2323)

Obama Speaks on Verdict in Trayvon Martin Case  7/19/2013  (1831)

Summer Heat: Elders Called to Engage in Civil Disobedience  7/18/2013  (1890)

Business Predators Must Be Forced to Stop Their Damaging Behavior  5/26/2013  (2061)

Pastors Create Public Consciousness  5/26/2013  (1961)

Kathyrn Tanner: The Social Trinity and Politics  5/26/2013  (2046)

Obama Failed to Appoint Competent IRS Leaders  5/22/2013  (2122)

Occupy Theology: Obama has Broken the Hearts of the Young  5/20/2013  (1856)

Corporate Conspiracy Theories in Pastoral Consciousness  5/17/2013  (2041)

The Gosnell Verdict and Abortion Politics  5/16/2013  (2317)

False Equivalence, the IRS, and the Right's Persecution Complex  5/15/2013  (2021)

The NRA: Southern Political Terrorism  5/14/2013  (1967)

Public Violence  4/17/2013  (1827)

A Teacher is Raised  4/8/2013  (1883)

Stop Coal Exports  3/27/2013  (1949)

Health Care Hogs Drive Up Costs  3/27/2013  (1842)

Manufactured Landscapes  3/23/2013  (1926)

About Death Camp Thinking  3/22/2013  (1902)

Marriage Equality Goes Mainstream  3/21/2013  (1949)

Hope for the New Pope  3/14/2013  (2014)

The End of a Catholic Moment  3/12/2013  (1961)

Wealth Inequality is Much Worse than Most People Believe   3/11/2013  (1997)

The Government is Making Us Old  3/11/2013  (2190)

Fairness Now Means to Tax the Rich More  12/10/2012  (2044)

Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness:THE NEW JIM CROW  11/14/2012  (2154)

A Victory for Life  11/7/2012  (1896)

Romney is Not a Christian  11/5/2012  (2141)

It's Not Theology that is Utopian Today, It's the Market Fundamentalists Like Romney  10/17/2012  (2489)

Why Does Romney Focus So Much On Apology?  9/12/2012  (2059)

A Way of Speaking that Wins Elections  9/6/2012  (2001)

Compared to Other Nations, America is Under-Taxed and More Unequal  8/31/2012  (2019)

Obedience, Not Liberty, is Highest Value for Real Conservatives  8/28/2012  (2089)

Romney Degrades Himself with Welfare Ad  8/28/2012  (2050)

Prosperity Economics: Building an Economy for All  8/3/2012  (2135)

Michele Bachmann: Say Stupid Things, Make Lots of Money  8/1/2012  (2062)

The Trees are Falling  7/14/2012  (2217)

President's Social Darwinism Comment Stirs Up Business Elite  4/16/2012  (2159)

Today is My Last Day at Goldman Sachs  3/14/2012  (2187)

Creation is Broken: Against Utopian Conservatives  3/9/2012  (2165)

Women have Spoken: The End of Rush Limbaugh  3/9/2012  (2153)

Nazism and Public Schools: Catholic Bishops Want Public Money for Their Own Schools  2/25/2012  (2643)

The Cynical Use of Religion by Economic Elites  2/23/2012  (2659)

The Continuing Attack by Religious Right against Mainline Christianity  2/22/2012  (2357)

A Phony Public Theology  2/22/2012  (2157)

Naming the Enemy: Biological Fundamentalism  2/17/2012  (2159)

Social Policy in Pastoral Consciousness: Who Should Serve the 'Poor'?  2/16/2012  (2225)

Bishops Reject Obama Compromise, the Devil is Forcing Birth Control  2/14/2012  (2195)

Even Critics of Safety Net Increasingly Depend on It  2/13/2012  (2164)

Romney Believes Constitution is Divine  2/11/2012  (2222)

Santorum Reveals His Political Philosophy with Comment on French Revolution  2/10/2012  (4843)

Legal Aspects of the Contraception Debate  2/9/2012  (2219)

Catholic Bishops Want Freedom to Oppress Women  2/8/2012  (2625)

David Stockman on Crony Capitalism, A Very Helpful Discussion  1/26/2012  (4626)

Wall Street to be Investigated  1/25/2012  (2569)

Obama Tells Truth about Economy  12/7/2011  (2172)

God Demands Justice  11/17/2011  (2156)

Understanding Protest Movements  11/15/2011  (2135)

Chris Hedges: People Have Finally Woken Up  10/8/2011  (2199)

A New Economic Strategy for Wall Street Protests  10/5/2011  (2232)

Wall Street Occupation Protest - Live Video  9/26/2011  (2254)

Tens of Thousands Protest in Israel; Citizens of the USA Should Also Hit the Streets  8/7/2011  (2296)

A Day of Blasphemy: Governor Rick Perry's Prayer Festival  8/5/2011  (2489)

Wall Street Hates the Tea Party  8/4/2011  (2318)

The Instability of the American Political System  7/27/2011  (2391)

Fukuyama on The Origins of Political Order  4/15/2011  (2358)

Obama Punches Back  4/13/2011  (2456)

Punish the Poor  4/9/2011  (2534)

Facing the Reality of Conflict and the Problem with Liberal Neutrality  3/21/2011  (2463)

The Republican Attack on Poor Women  2/20/2011  (2454)

A Real Spirit of Peace  2/11/2011  (2355)

Public Lies about Tax Cuts  2/10/2011  (2441)

The People Own the Streets  2/2/2011  (2456)

Political Violence Works  1/13/2011  (2568)

Religion as a Matter of Political Calculation  12/24/2010  (2661)

Tea Party Leader Says Methodist Church is the Religious Arm of Socialism   12/20/2010  (2717)

Bottom-up History: The Commoners of Atwood  12/13/2010  (2464)

Patriotic Millionaires Support Increase in Their OwnTaxes  12/10/2010  (2531)

Democrats Elected a Republican President  12/9/2010  (2487)

Obama Agrees to Increase Obscene Levels of Inequality  12/9/2010  (2369)

The Unemployed are Actual, Real People  12/3/2010  (2550)

A Deep Sense of Bewilderment and Betrayal  12/2/2010  (2556)

Chalmers Johnson Dies, Military Writer Who Told the Truth  11/21/2010  (2531)

Should the Rich Rule?  11/3/2010  (2400)

The Liberation Theology of Abraham Lincoln  10/12/2010  (2555)

Mass Psychosis as a Pastoral Concern  9/24/2010  (2605)

Glenn Beck and Apostolic Authority  8/31/2010  (2498)

A Moving Event  7/19/2010  (2434)

Gay Marriage to Become Law of the Land  6/21/2010  (2466)

Facing Death at the Center of Life  6/14/2010  (2525)

Rand Paul Exposes Tea Party Racism in Libertarianism  5/20/2010  (2644)

Equal Freedom: The Obama Doctrine  5/7/2010  (2824)

The Last Protestant is Leaving  4/9/2010  (2586)

Economics in Pastoral Consciousness  3/14/2010  (2676)

The Strategic Consciousness of the Protestant Pastor  3/1/2010  (2623)

Memesis and the Culture of Personal Crisis  2/15/2010  (2840)

Watch Out for that Communist Folk Music  1/22/2010  (2808)

The Political Cross at Xmas  12/23/2009  (2722)

There are Socialists and Communists in the White House  10/15/2009  (3366)

Send Money to ACORN Now!  9/19/2009  (3107)

The Moral Blindness of Glenn Beck  8/11/2009  (3199)

The Media Creation of Whacko Conservatism  7/30/2009  (3055)

Seven Pentecostal Mountains and Sarah Palin  7/16/2009  (3217)

Major Media Unfairly Presents Anti-Abortion Rhetoric  6/3/2009  (3150)

You Can Get Killed in a Public Church  6/2/2009  (3259)

Historical Jesus Theories: Bringing on the Reign of God  5/20/2009  (3573)

It's Not Socialism, It's Insanity  5/20/2009  (3065)

When Life Begins is Not at all Clear  5/19/2009  (3296)

The Political Use of Torture  4/25/2009  (3083)

Jesus is Not Some Phony Spook  4/22/2009  (3000)

Poisoned Waters, Chicken Shit and Smart Growth  4/21/2009  (3234)

The Significance of the Killing of Robert F. Kennedy  4/13/2009  (3226)

The Last Book by Neuhaus: America is Babylon  4/10/2009  (3456)

About the New Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships  4/9/2009  (3172)

Seeing the Truth about God and Economy  4/2/2009  (3370)

Big Bankers as Terrorists  3/23/2009  (3359)

Without Trust, No Economy  3/19/2009  (3191)

Exposing the Dual Structure of American Governance  3/19/2009  (3110)

Another Big Book on Justice  3/17/2009  (3129)

Why Pastors Need to Understand Rush Limbaugh  3/16/2009  (3177)

The Freeman Affair and the Israel Lobby  3/16/2009  (3202)

Uncreative Destruction  3/16/2009  (3230)

Some Truth about Income Tax Rates  3/13/2009  (3539)

Cultural Redemption: The Jewish-Arab Peace Song  3/13/2009  (3525)

The Poor Reputation of Evangelicals around the World  3/13/2009  (3260)

They have Stolen Our Language  3/11/2009  (3309)

CNBC: Mouthpiece for Business Ideology  3/11/2009  (3078)

Why Habermas?  3/11/2009  (3185)

Sex in God's Family  3/8/2009  (3384)


Please let us know what you think of these blogs or if you see something inappropriate.
Corporate Conspiracy Theories in Pastoral Consciousness
5/17/2013

I have added to the website an article by Stanley Aronowitz entitled A New Corporate World of Privilege and Prerogative for several reasons I will detail here.
  • At a dinner party a couple weeks ago I made a comment about the huge power of corporations in people's lives today and a pastor friend of mine responded that I have a "conspiracy theory" about corporate power. I thought it a strange response. Calling something a conspiracy theory is a strong rebuke, a way to reject and avoid statements made on the basis of judgment and analysis. It is very, very easy to document the statement that corporations have great power over people's lives today without appeal to any secret, central group plotting to take over the world. But the dinner party was just ending as this statement was made and casual conversation does not always allow for in depth support for one's views. The Aronowitz article provides clear analysis for the legitimacy of the idea of a "corporate elite."

  • Both pastors and churches need more honesty and clarity about the significance of the corporate elite in society. Conservatives, libertarians, and Tea Party true believers  blame everything on government. But the fact is that the most powerful force in people's lives on a daily basis is the modern corporation. If people have problems it is ridiculous to blame government if the problems are really caused by what corporations are doing. Clarity about this is crucial for any public theology which wants to be based on a truthful view of the real world. Just think about food, housing, jobs, energy, health care, environment and communications media. These are not small matters. They are matters of life and death, every day, all the time.

  • I think it helpful to speak about "pastoral consciousness," not just what pastors may know, their ideas about doctrine or the bible, but that of which they are on a daily basis consciously aware, the core elements of awareness they bring to specific situations as they speak to others, teach or prepare sermons. Because religion in this culture has been relegated to private not public life, pastors tend to use sermon examples from family life or personal relations. They screen out public issues because these may cause conflict or political disagreement. But imagine what the bible would be if all references to the Roman Empire were removed. Imagine trying to understand Martin Luther if all references to the Roman Catholic Church were removed, the most powerful public institution in the 16th century. Trying to remove all reference to modern corporate power means that the gospel message can have no concrete meaning in reality, which is one reason, perhaps, people have stopped expecting the church to have much to say about real life today. The Aronowitz article may help pastors bring the corporate elite to their conscious awareness.

  • There are still some persons in the church who identify with the corporate elite, or the business class, and these persons often have significant power in the church, not least because of their financial contributions. I once was at a meeting of about fifty pastors and leaders of social service and justice ministries. A synodical official who was also vice-president of a large company had been asked to speak. When he got up to speak he said that he was a representative of the "corporate world." I remember this because I thought it a bit strange; the man was at a church gathering and he was a person of faith. But rather than bring his faith to the corporate world he was speaking from the values and assumptions of the "corporate world," this was his own primary consciousness. So the idea that there is a "corporate world" is not a matter of any conspiracy theory, it is a clear understanding of those who inhabit that world. There is a corporate world over against other "worlds" in the world. And that corporate world is where the power and money is located today. And that world wants to maintain its power and wealth and seeks to diminish any person or group or way thinking which challenges it.

  • Aronowitz is writing an update on a book I read in college in the early 1960s, C. Wright Mills The Power Elite. I am now preparing to go back to St. Olaf College for the 50th anniversary of my graduation so I am thinking about my time there. St. Olaf is not known as a center of radical thinking, but today to even mention C. Wright Mills in some circles is to place yourself on the very far left of political philosophy. To me this is an indication of the degree to which corporate thinking has come to nearly completely dominate the public sphere (to use a term made popular by the German social philosopher Jurgen Habermas especially in his book The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere). Both of the political parties in this country are now dominated by corporate thinking. The ecumenical church is one of the only remaining institutions in society which in its primary traditions and doctrinal assumptions has not entirely given itself over to the corporate mentality.

  • The Aronowitz article is one of five other articles in a series called The Power Elite Revisited presented at the New Left Project website. I recommend readers take a look at the other articles as well. Then go and buy a book by Richard A. Horsley called Covenant Economics: A Biblical Vision of Justice for All, a comprehensive presentation of economic realities in both the Hebrew Bible and the New Testament, including the assemblies organized by the Apostle Paul. You can then compare what Horsley says with the thinking of C. Wright Mills. The bible is clearly a source of transcendence from our own culture and time. If we can come to better understand biblical economics and the idea of "covenant economics" we in the church today may be able to speak to our times with greater clarity and honesty.




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