Joe Biden decided to double down on his ridiculous statement from this morning that patriotic people wouldn’t complain about paying higher taxes. Instead of simply shrugging it off or backing away from the statment, as almost anyone else would have done, Biden instead justified higher taxes by making it a duty — as a Catholic:
Fired up in a room full of union members, Joe Biden angrily defended both his ticket’s tax plan and his own claim that tax hikes for the rich are patriotic, while urging fellow Democrats to stand their ground on what he said was a values debate.
Biden, speaking to members of the Laborers International Union of North America, began by saying that there is “no disagreement” between John McCain and Barack Obama on the need for tax cuts. The real issue, he said, is who gets them.
“Catholic social doctrine as I was taught it is, you take care of people who need the help the most,” he said. “Now it’d be different if you could make the case to me that by giving this tax cut to the very wealthy, everybody else was going to be better off. We saw what happened the last eight years when we gave that tax cut.”
I’m really beginning to believe that Joe Biden got his Catholic instruction from Father Guido Sarducci and Sister Mary Elephant. Leaving aside the ridiculous notion that a politician poses as a Catholic on social issues and still supports abortion, Catholics are taught to act as individuals to assist the poor. Nowhere in Catholic doctrine (the catechism) can one find the notion that taxes are required for this purpose.
In fact, in seven out of eight references to taxes in the catechism, taxes are mentioned in context of “tax collectors” — people who today would be called Quislings or thieves, and perhaps both. In only one instance does Church doctrine talk about paying tax, when Paragraph 586 notes the significance of Jesus paying the temple tax, which also has nothing to do with acts of charity.
In the most well-known Biblical passage on taxpaying, Jesus tells the Pharisees to “Render therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” Paragraph 2242 instructs that this makes clear the separation of taxation from religious duty, “the distinction between serving God and serving the political community.” There is a moral duty to pay taxes as residents of a nation, but nothing is ever said in doctrine that insists on paying more, or hiking taxes, or in satisfying the need to assist the poor by forcing others to pay more in taxes.
And speaking of Biden’s Catholic duty, he seems very free at confiscating the money of others while demonstrating little charity on his own. His tax returns show an average of $369 a year in charitable contributions, a miserly 0.3% of his income. If Biden wants to help the poor and downtrodden, then he needs to start by using his own resources before going after the pocketbooks of others.