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WITandWISDOM(tm) - November 22, 2004
Do not read good books - life is too short for that - read only the best. - Ernest Dimnet
Source: Quote Lady's Quote of the Day, mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
~~~~~~~ SPECIAL THOUGHTS:
Vellore, India, began to gain its reputation as a treatment center for lepers almost a century ago. Deformed faces, stubby limbs, leathery skin - all were telltale signs of this population sector. Shops, schools, and restaurants all banned the lepers, fearing that germs and bad luck could contaminate their air. Outcasts, rejects, untouchables - the lepers of Vellore were forced to live secluded lives on the fringes of the town.
And then in the mid-1900s, humanitarian organizations came to work with Christian Medical College (CMC), a landmark of Christian education and service in Vellore. They brought with them medicine, plastic surgery, and appeals to the public for compassion and acceptance. They also brought microcellular rubber (MCR). This black sponge like material was used to fabricate shoes and sandals for feet without sensation, the cushiony material preventing the onset of ulcers.
With medical care and reconstructive surgery available, it soon became impossible to spot a leper - well, almost impossible. The only indicator of leprosy that lingered among many in Vellore was those unique black shoes.
At the sight of a pair of black MCR shoes, backs would be turned toward the wearer. No amount of education about the noncontagious nature of leprosy could break the segregation. Compassion and brotherhood refused to rise above stigma.
What was to be done? After much brainstorming, the Christian community made a statement - not one of words, but one of empathetic, Christian action. All connected with Christian Medical College - staff and students alike - purchased and wore black MCR shoes. The townspeople were in confusion: Who was the doctor and who was the leper? Who was the accepted and who was the pariah? From whom did you turn away and with
whom did you shake hands? No one could be sure.
The statement made by a Christian community changed the perspective of an entire town. Today one can find black MCR shoes in most shoe stores in Vellore. Everyone wears them. Many young people continue to attend CMC, one of only a few places that offer quality Christian medical education in India. And each leaves with more than a profession. Each leaves with at least one pair of black MCR shoes that symbolize true brotherhood.
What a statement of Christianity! To cross over the barriers of differences and embrace another! Isn't that what Jesus did? If He could walk in someone else's shoes shouldn't we?
Source: Signs of the Times, Copyright (c) March 2004, Pacific Press, http://www.signstimes.com
~~~~~~~ THIS & THAT:
My husband, Michael, and I were at a restaurant with his boss, a rather stern older man. When Michael began a tale, which I was sure he had told before, I gave him a kick under the table. There was no response, so I gave him another poke. Still the story went on. Suddenly he stopped, grinned and said, "Oh, but I've told you this one before, haven't I?"
We all chuckled and changed the subject. Later, on the dance floor, I asked my husband why it had taken him so long to get my message.
"What do you mean?" he replied. "I cut the story off as soon as you kicked me."
"But I kicked you twice and it still took you awhile to stop!"
Suddenly we realized what had happened. Sheepishly we returned to our table. The boss smiled and said, "Don't worry. After the second one I figured it wasn't for me, so I passed it along!"
Source: Top Greetings, http://www.top-greetings.com/
~~~~~~~ KEEP SMILING:
A Woman's Prayer
I pray for Wisdom, to understand a man, Love, to forgive him, and Patience, for his moods, because, Lord, if I pray for Strength, I'll just beat him to death...
Source: Monday Fodder mailto:email@example.com?subject=Subscribe_Monday_Fodder
"Understanding Tax Cuts" by: David R. Kamerschen, Ph.D
Sometimes politicians, journalists and the liberal left exclaim; "It's just a tax cut for the rich!" and it is just accepted to be fact.
But what does that really mean?
Just in case you are not completely clear on this issue, I hope the following will help. Please read it carefully.
Let's put tax cuts in terms everyone can understand
Suppose that every day, ten men go out for dinner and the bill for all ten comes to $100. If they paid their bill the way we pay our taxes, it would go something like this: The first four men (the poorest) would pay nothing.
The fifth would pay $1.
The sixth would pay $3.
The seventh would pay $7.
The eighth would pay $12.
The ninth would pay $18.
The tenth man (the richest) would pay $59.
So, that's what they decided to do.
The ten men ate dinner in the restaurant every day and seemed quite happy with the arrangement, until one day, the owner threw them a curve.
"Since you are all such good customers," he said, "I'm going to reduce the cost of your daily meal by $20." Dinner for the ten now cost just $80.
The group still wanted to pay their bill the way we pay our taxes so the first four men were unaffected. They would still eat for free. But what about the other six men - the paying customers? How could they divide the $20 windfall so that everyone would get his 'fair share?'
They realized that $20 divided by six is $3.33. But if they subtracted that from everybody's share, then the fifth man and the sixth man would each end up being paid to eat their meal. So, the restaurant owner suggested that it would be fair to reduce each man's bill by roughly the same amount, and he proceeded to work out the amounts each should pay.
The fifth man, like the first four, now paid nothing (100% savings).
The sixth now paid $2 instead of $3 (33% savings).
The seventh now paid $5 instead of $7 (28% savings).
The eighth now paid $9 instead of $12 (25% savings).
The ninth now paid $14 instead of $18 (22% savings).
The tenth now paid $49 instead of $59 (16% savings).
Each of the six was better off than before. And the first four continued to eat for free. But once outside the restaurant, the men Began to compare their savings.
"I only got a dollar out of the $20," declared the sixth man. He pointed to the tenth man," but he got $10!"
"Yeah, that's right," exclaimed the fifth man. "I only saved a dollar, too. It's unfair that he got ten times more than me!" "That's true!!" shouted the seventh man. "Why should he get $10 back when I got only two? The wealthy get all the breaks!"
"Wait a minute," yelled the first four men in unison. "We didn't get anything at all. The system exploits the poor!"
The nine men surrounded the tenth and beat him up.
The next night the tenth man didn't show up for dinner, so the nine sat down and ate without him. But when it came time to pay the bill, they discovered something important. They didn't have enough money between all of them for even half of the bill!
And that, boys and girls, journalists and college professors, is how our tax system works. The people who pay the highest taxes get the most benefit from a tax reduction. Tax them too much, attack them for being wealthy, and they just may not show up anymore. In fact, they might start eating overseas where the atmosphere is somewhat friendlier.
David R. Kamerschen, Ph.D Professor of Economics University of Georgia
Submitted by Orvie Jensen