Saturday, October 27, 2007

Five Reasons Christianity Conflicts With Socialism (#4)

Christians, as I have attempted to show in past posts, should have many reasons for opposing socialism and socialistic policies. It retards individual productivity and neglects and destroys God's plan for the family and human government. Perhaps even more odious though is socialism's removal of the idea of private property. Whereas the Bible affirms the Lord's ownership of the world "and all it contains" (Psalm 24:1) and God's delegation of stewardship to humans (Gen 1:28), socialism affirms the totalitarian rule of the government (even when it is democratically elected).

It is clear in the early parts of the scriptures that God has not only created human life, but will not allow anyone to unjustly take life, such as in the case of Cain and Abel. A person's life is in effect owned by God and God has in effect given each man stewardship over his own life. His own decisions may lead to health, prosperity and good relationships, or his decisions may lead to pain, and physical and spiritual problems. A life can produce all sorts of things such as food, clothing, and materials. So life is the foundation of private property, which is essentially the ability to keep the fruit of one's labors and pass it on freely. This is affirmed in Exodus 20:13-17, which states that you should not murder, commit adultery, steal or "covet your neighbor's house...or anything that belongs to your neighbor". Can we take the things our neighbor has produced with his own labors? No, they are his, even though we may think our lot in life was unjust.

Socialistic policies often take the very fruits of human labors and they often tax the owners of property so citizens become serfs to their own government, which in turn acts as the "noble" lord in this modern day example of feudalism. Even if we say pure socialism does not take private property because their is no private property in pure socialism we run in to a biblical problem. If all property is public then the state owns that which God designed individual humans to tend and enjoy. How can a person show compassion and give to the needy if he has no property to give? If God expects you to "divide your bread with the hungry" (Isaiah 58:7), then you can not carry out His command. Jesus affirmed private property when he commended those who gave what was "theirs" to others.

One reason that socialists get nervous about allowing people to freely handle their own money is that they know some people will respond like the rich young ruler. Probably he was given his wealth through an inheritance (hence his wealth and position in youth). When Jesus asked him to "sell his possessions and give to the poor", he "went away grieved" and decided to keep his possessions (Matthew 19:21-22). The socialists fear that wealth will simply be collected by the rich to get richer. However, the socialists deny two important things: the power of God and the principles of economics. First, God has the power to change even the most selfish life and use it for good (such as with Zaccheus in Luke 19). Second, people need to fulfill the desire of another person to gain economically from them. If I want food, I am willing to pay for it and the farmer gains money. The fact that this rich man was a ruler probably indicates that he got money through taxation or domination over others (not by providing a true economic service), which ironically is the very thing the socialists are willing to accept by the government. The very oppression they hope to stop becomes universal under socialism. That is what led Winston Churchill to state (at least as my memory recalls it) that " the vice of capitalism is the inequality of its riches, while the virtue of socialism is the equality of it misery".
(My next post will develop further this ideal of material equality and what it means for a Christian.)

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Ron Paul for President

As an exception to the well-known field of socialist, pseudo-capitalist, and semi-socialist candidates for president, Ron Paul is free market candidate worthy of support. He stands by liberty even when it is unpopular and has often been the sole congressman to vote against a bill.

Here is a quick breakdown of his views, so you can determine if he is worthy of your vote:
Fiscal (favors the following)
1. Keeping the market free
2. Decreasing spending by eliminating unconstitutional programs
3. Decreasing spending by ending excessive American military intervention
4. Eliminating the IRS
5. Abolishing unconstitutional taxes
6. Less taxes
7. Ending the (Federal Reserve's) banking cartel's control over money supply (i.e. eliminating the inflation tax)
8. Returning to sound money backing (gold standard, etc.)
9. Ending costly war on drugs
10. Ending welfare and corporate welfare

1. Eliminating federal (read "national government") authority over marriage and abortion
2. De-funding government subsidized abortion
3. Legal immigration only
4. Parental choice in schooling
5. Individual liberty in all areas
6. Second amendment rights
7. Opposing the national ID card
8. Right to privacy
9. Right to religious expression
10. Right to use drugs or harm one's self

1. Ending the war in Iraq quickly
2. Avoiding confrontation with Iran
3. Pulling out of "police actions" around the whole
4. Focusing of defending our country and borders
5. Eliminating aid to other nations for "nation building"
6. Maintaining US sovereignty

Where does a principled man like this get such ideas? Interestingly enough, he is a Christian that lives out his beliefs. He sees individual free will and liberty in the Bible. He also sees personal responsibility and limited government in the Bible. Is it that the Founders were not so crazy after all? Is it that we do not, and should not, need to have the government caring for our financial and social affairs as a nanny would?

If your willing to look beyond the mainstream names that get the big media attention, check out Ron Paul. Of course, you may find a good candidate from the Libertarian Party or the Constitution Party. However, Ron Paul is bringing traditional conservatism and libertarianism into the Republican Party, which is turning more socialistic. This is exciting and worth your attention. Check out

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Five Reasons Christianity Conflicts with Socialim (#3)

In previous posts I have written that Christianity conflicts with socialism regarding the role of the family and individual initiative. In this post I will attempt to communicate how Christianity conflicts with socialism with regards to the proper role of the government. It is not that God is against government (a sort of anarchist), but that he has prescribed a limited function for the governments of the earth. He desires theocracy (in the heart of mankind and with the nation of Israel), but (as with Israel and our hearts) He will not rule this present earth without allowing free will. Therefore, with complete knowledge of the nature of man, He established certain guidelines for the government.
The first significant guideline that God set up was that man should punish violence done to another individual. God established capital punishment to protect human life (Gen. 9:6). God later gave the Law to the Israelites, which included the definition of right and wrong and some special customs the Israelites were to keep. God expected the Israelites to obey every part, but the Gentiles were expected to obey just the moral commandments that were written on their conscience (ie. not to keep circumcision, but to not steal) (Rom. 2:14-16). These moral commandments provide the basis for what God expects governments to punish and reward. Romans 13: 1-7 states that God wants to use government to punish evil (ie. murder and theft) and to praise good (ie. kindness). The Bible never indicates that God wants the government to be good, to be compassionate, or to be godly. No, the government is there to encourage good by punishing evil. Why did God not just have the government fulfill the command to "love your neighbor"? It is because the government is not an indiviual soul which can choose good or to be compassionate. It is an impersonal entity that must rely on force and not free will. Free will is for each individual. Socialism attempts to create a corporate conscience. It attempts to create a compassionate state through force. It attempts to yoke the righteous with the unrighteous (2 Cor. 6:14) in fulfilling "love your neighbor." But, this was not God's call to the state, but to the individual (Matt. 25:45-46, etc.)
So socialism attempts to provide for the general welfare through the labor of the productive. So the lazy (who we already stated in a previous post, God condemns) will perhaps recieve subsidaries for their lifstyle while the productive are taxed. This contradicts God's desire for freedom of choice and the coresponding consequences. It means that force takes the place of free will. It condones stealing, which is evil in God's eyes, and attempts to make the righteous and unrighteous "compassionate" through external means instead of changing the heart (which is God's will) (1 Sam. 16:7). God would rather that government promote the general welfare by giving people the freedom to provide for their own family and give discerningly. As stated in a previous post, people will then naturally do what is necessary to provide for those they care for, and will have the extra funds (that now weren't taken through welfare state taxation) to benefit those around them. This does not mean benefit others just through giving. It also means through investing in providing better services to those around them in exchange for the services other provide. So that when the craftsman provides a better product and the standard of living improves for all. Is it not true that the most free people have historically been the most prosperous? Following God's plan for the government frees people to do good, while punishing the obvious evils, and leaving everyone to choose for his or herself which path to take (Mt. 7:13-14).

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Back just in time to declare my presidential campaign exploration

Even though I have been inactive on this blog for several months due to: parenting, a job change, and a move, the political scene never rests it seems. It is the season to explore the possibility of a presidential candidacy. It's time for the Democrats to pull out socialistic slogans, while trying to get the wealthy to donate to their campaigns. It's time for the Republicans to claim to be different from the "other party", while adhering to most of the same socialistic ideas (usually on a lesser scale though). Meanwhile, it is time for the third parties to be ignored by most the media and certainly the insiders in the political machine that fears a break-up of the monopoly. By the way, I am exploring a presidential run in the near future: A.D. 2020 (since I am not thirty-five yet and that is one of the few parts of the Constitution still followed).

If I sound a little disillusioned with the political state of the United States, it's because I am. Some have called me an idealist, but I guess I just think that we could always strive to be better. When I looked at the 2006 election possibilities in our area I was initially excited. However, as I came to actually look at the policies of the candidates running with the "two parties," I saw that they essentially had the same fundamental axioms. Namely, that government is needed to solve all social ills and should take any action to do so. I am not talking about government properly protecting its citizens from aggression and violence, I am talking about government dictating to the people how to: eat, drive, do business, raise their children, handle their property, express their beliefs, etc. This is Statism. This is Socialism. This is the religion of Socialism. This coercion is unconstitutional since these powers are not granted to the national government, besides the way they violate that First Amendment because Congress has indirectly declared a national religion. This all made me dissatisfied with the donkey and elephant that seemed to be leading us down a similar path at the expense of freedom and liberty. That is when I did more research on the Libertarian Party and started to realized that not everyone is letting the State take over. My disillusionment still exists, but I most admit I am more hopeful due to my new knowledge of this party.

The Libertarian Party was established in 1976 on the basis of being "a party of principles" such as freedom from government, limiting government, and expanding liberty. I agree with 95% of their platform (my main issue is the party's compromised stance on abortion). Libertarians would agree with those from the Constitution Party that the constitution should be followed. Libertarians claim to argue from logic and reason instead of "religion." I think that they are only partially correct here (since I think Christianity is a logical religion and our reason comes from God). Anyway, I would definitely recommend this third party as a fresh alternative to the status quo socialistic tendencies of other parties.

Info: - national website of LP - pro-life wing of Libertarian Party