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Rich and Poor

2021-02-14 10:27 AM | Thomas
One of the primary tests of the mood of a society at any given time is whether its comfortable people tend to identify, psychologically, with the power and achievements of the very successful or with the needs and sufferings of the underprivileged.

  -Richard Hofstadter, historian (1916-1970)

(69:9.4) The teachers of revealed religion, more especially the Christian teachers, were the first to proclaim that the poor could have salvation on equal terms with the rich.

(135:6.8)  He instructed the rich to feed the poor;

(148:6.2)  My Father in heaven loves the poor just as much as the rich; he is no respecter of persons.

(166:4.3) All too long have your fathers believed that prosperity was the token of divine approval; that adversity was the proof of God's displeasure. I declare that such beliefs are superstitions. Do you not observe that far greater numbers of the poor joyfully receive the gospel and immediately enter the kingdom? If riches evidence divine favor, why do the rich so many times refuse to believe this good news from heaven?

(196:2.8) Jesus blessed the poor because they were usually sincere and pious; he condemned the rich because they were usually wanton and irreligious. He would equally condemn the irreligious pauper and commend the consecrated and worshipful man of wealth.

    Richard Hofstadter was an American historian and public intellectual of the mid-20th century.
    Hofstadter was the DeWitt Clinton Professor of American History at Columbia University. Rejecting his earlier communist approach to history, in the 1950s he came closer to the concept of "consensus history", and was epitomized by some of his admirers as the "iconic historian of postwar liberal consensus." Others see in his work an early critique of the one-dimensional society, as Hofstadter was equally critical of socialist and capitalist models of society, and bemoaned the "consensus" within the society as "bounded by the horizons of property and entrepreneurship", criticizing the "hegemonic liberal capitalist culture running throughout the course of American history".
    His most widely read works are Social Darwinism in American Thought, 1860–1915 (1944); The American Political Tradition (1948); The Age of Reform (1955); Anti-intellectualism in American Life (1963), and the essays collected in The Paranoid Style in American Politics (1964).
    He was twice awarded the Pulitzer Prize, first in 1956 for The Age of Reform, an analysis of the populism movement in the 1890s and the progressive movement of the early 20th century; and then in 1964 for the cultural history Anti-intellectualism in American Life.

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