I've been thinking a lot lately about a couple of America's more pressing problems.
First, of course, is the whole Separation of Church and State thing. Secular folk claim we have it while the religious scream like stuck pigs about persecution. (How anyone could successfully persecute 80% of the population without a very large and cooperative military, is beyond me -- but that's the claim.)
Indeed, it seems to me silly for the religious to fuss so much about this because of all the unearned privileges they extract and enjoy from the rest of us. Take taxes, for example. Become a "church" or other religious organization and the tax man bows reverently, shuffles away, and then raises everyone else's taxes to make up for the shortfall. Therefore in spite of SOCAS claims, believers and nonbelievers alike are in actuality forced to financially support the bronze-age, desert practices of religious adherents.
Another major issue we face is healthcare. Now I can't think of anyone who doesn't believe that we need to come up with a plan to make American healthcare more accessible and affordable.
Much as my Libertarian brethren, for years I opposed any further government involvement in the problem because a good case could be made that such involvement has already raised costs and reduced the quality of care for millions. Google Medicare and Veterans Healthcare if you doubt me.
After careful consideration however, I think have come upon a reasonable compromise that at least partially addresses both of the aforementioned problems.
No one can deny that just by repealing the tax-free status of religion, governments at the local, state, and federal levels would generate more than enough new revenue to underwrite a health plan for all Americans more generous than even the Congress of the United States enjoys today. Unfortunately, with the stranglehold the religious have on our elected officialdom, that simply is not going to happen. So we need to move on to plan B:
Don't go away - hear me out! Here's how it would work --
All religious groups, organizations, and the like that enjoy tax-exempt status would, as a requirement for retaining that privileged position, establish Healthcare Prayer Committees.
Then, whenever any American became ill, or was injured, they would submit a form (in triplicate of course) to the newly-established Department of Faith-based Medicine.
An employee of the DF-bM would then contact an existing Healthcare Prayer Committee - preferably but not necessarily in the patient's home town and of the same faith, and provide them the name and diagnosis of the person requiring medical intervention.
The HPC would then commence a round of sincere and fervent prayer for the healing of that patient. Given both the explicit promises of the Bible and the undoubtedly heartfelt claims of the efficacy of prayer among the faithful, a quick and effective return to health should be no problem.
Voila! National Healthcare at no additional cost, and a solid reaffirmation of America's Judaic - Christian roots, all in one package.
So tell me -- what's not to like?