RNS: Caterpillar divestment doesn’t play well with Peoria Presbyterians

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Proposals to have the Presbyterian Church (USA) denounce or divest from Caterpillar Inc. because the company sells bulldozers to Israel are not playing well in Peoria.

The central Illinois city is home to the heavy machinery manufacturer, and a healthy number of local Presbyterians count on the company for paychecks, pensions or health care.

Nearly a third of the 700-member Northminster Presbyterian Church, for example, derive their income from Caterpillar or one of its subsidiaries, said Senior Pastor Doug Hucke; five of the church's nine elders work for the company.

"Caterpillar's huge in this part of the world," Hucke said.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchReligion & Culture* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate Life* Religion News & CommentaryOther ChurchesPresbyterian

6 Comments
Posted June 30, 2010 at 12:40 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]



1. Umbridge wrote:

Just like God hardened the heart of Pharoh, I think he made “stupid” the minds of people to accomplish his plans.

July 1, 2:37 am | [comment link]
2. Archer_of_the_Forest wrote:

Well, the irony of that whole thing is that Caterpillar also sells bulldozers to Arabs and other Middle Eastern countries.

July 1, 8:20 am | [comment link]
3. Don R wrote:

As a Presbyterian, I’d be more likely to divest from the PC (USA) for its institutional support for all manner of perverse political, economic, and moral philosophies, and its too-frequent reduction of the Gospel itself to mere politics.  Not that it bothers me or anything.

That said, the unfortunate thing about this story is that it fails to present the Peoria church’s response as anything other than vulgar self-interest; it doesn’t address the question of whether the proposed divestment is itself immoral.  I would argue that it is, since the rationale for divestment is rooted in (1) the dishonesty of activist politics, i.e., attacking groups or individuals not directly involved in the issues at hand in the hopes that they will respond cravenly, thereby offering implicit validation of the charges; and (2) a (perhaps deliberate?) misrepresentation of the situation between Israel and its Arab neighbors.

July 1, 10:00 am | [comment link]
4. Daniel wrote:

Can anybody translate “stupid is as stupid does” into Latin.  I’m sure it would sound very learned and be much more polite in referring to PCUSA.

July 1, 3:06 pm | [comment link]
5. Sick & Tired of Nuance wrote:

Stultus est sicut stultus facit

July 2, 7:12 pm | [comment link]
6. Sick & Tired of Nuance wrote:

I don’t actually speak latin, but I do have a reasonably good Babel fish and of course…a towel.

July 2, 7:16 pm | [comment link]
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