Montana Politics

Mitt & the Bible

Apparently, the new reason Mitt is giving for not releasing his taxes is that he doesn’t want us all to know how much he is giving to his church. Presumably he’s thinking of this verse:

“3 But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing,”

This is fine advice – the gist of the verses is if you are giving to others to look good, for the earthly benefits, that’s all the benefits you deserve. I do wish some politicians & preachers would pay a bit more attention to the next section:

5 “And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners [on televisions?] to be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full.”

But Mitt’s explanation is lacking in at least two ways. First of all, if this is a religious issue, why was it okay to make his tithes public for a couple years? Matthew 6.4 does not say “unless it’s the bare minimum needed to have a shot at getting elected”. Secondly, I realize that the verse speaks specifically of making public donations for the public esteem it creates, but telling the government how much money you give away to write it off on their taxes seems to fall into the “they have received their reward in full” category.

I don’t begrudge people putting their donations to charity on their tax returns; it’s totally reasonable. However, claiming you can’t reveal your taxes because it reveals your generosity, but still using those same donations for your financial advantage, seems a bit silly.

If you appreciate an independent voice holding Montana politicians accountable and informing voters, and you can throw a few dollars a month our way, we would certainly appreciate it.


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  • Possibly he used creative accounting to lessen the amount of his tith, and fears that if the truth gets out, the Mormon money boys in Salt Lake City will send him a bill for the difference. Stiffing the IRS is almost a national sport, but stiffing the LDS is a high crime indeed.

    • Assuming he made the same income b/w 2000 and 2010, he would have stiffed the LDS $8m and change (based on his 2010 tax return). In addition to the 40% income tax he paid, George Romney tithed 20% of his income. Apparently the stork carried this apple a little too far from the tree–and dropped it straight on its head.

    • James, you beat me to the punch. Who’s he hiding from, the voting public, the IRS or the church? I’ll bet the church forgives him, though, if he becomes president and advances the church’s ideology.

        • James, you have kids?

          I was thinking if you did they or their decedents could go to the Temple in SLC and “save” you.

          • I wonder if you’re aware of the difference between a decedent and a descendent. I find it hard to believe any of his children’s decedents could amble out of their graves and make it to temple. Plus, I don’t think one can even “have” a decedent.

          • I have a hunch I’m beyond that kind of “saving.” I certainly hope so. I wonder whether Paul Ryan has been, or will be, saved in that way, and whether he will be told if he is.

            • Ryan’s going to be the one saving.

              You guys keep aborting vs. LDS families having 8 kids I’m thinking that mathematically we’ll all be saved.

              • Things I’ve learned from Big Swede today:

                Mormons will convert Paul Ryan from Catholicism, or at least will move the largest church ion the world to accept post-mortem baptism as sacrament.

                The LDS church is born into the blood. Born Mormon, you stay Mormon. Of course, the birth rate among Catholics far outstrips that of Mormons, and they’ve been breeding like bunnies for far longer. I’m certain this will be a totally Catholic nation any day now. Waiting. Waiting … (Hmm, Hispanics are overwhelmingly Catholic. Are the fearful among the Republicants terrified of their looming minority status because they fear Catholics like Paul Ryan, or is it really that race thing …)

                Us guys have abortions.

  • Not that I care much, but Mr. Romney has good reasons for not releasing his tax returns. Perhaps, just guessing, he doesn’t want people to know the source or amount of his income, he might have stiffed the Mormons (religious faith among high-ranking politicians is almost always for show – at least they have that going for them.)

    If he is elected, there will be a cleanup and sanitized returns will be released.

    In the meantime it is important to understand … It does not matter. Romney presents Obama presents Romney – Romney can’t cough up a sincere smile or unscripted interesting thought. He’s a robot. Obama has a genuine smile. Other than that, same wars, same health care plan, same taxes, same attacks on social programs. Not a dime’s worth of difference.

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