Food for Thought

>> Monday, July 19, 2010

Selwyn Duke is a writer that I first found at Always liked his stuff. Always was fascinated by the name "Selwyn". (Where'd THAT come from?) For some reason, I've been getting his columns delivered right to my emails (yeah, both addresses---don't know why). But I don't mind because I like what he writes. He makes sense.

This column of his I found particularly interesting. He brings up some aspects of immigration that I had not thus far considered. One thing he seems to imply is a need to REDUCE the numbers of LEGAL immigrants that our current system now allows every year. Based on the points he makes, it makes complete sense.

I must admit that in this piece he doesn't provide much in the way of hard support for his stats and such. But as I thought on it, I realized that the point stands even if the voting assumptions are completely wrong. At my blog, where I thrill the mind with astounding common sense and wisdom, the subject of illegals, current immigration law and what possible harm is there by the migration of so many. Of course the harm is great and manifests in any number of ways and to add to all that was presented by a link to this article I now add the change to our culture.

As Duke points out, with so many immigrants, both legal and otherwise, coming to this country from Mexico and other parts further south, a growing segment of our population is really Mexico North. Assimilation is not even in question and our very character must change as a result. This is indeed harm and arguably the worst harm that "poor, hard working people who only want the best for their families" can inflict upon the United States of America.

Of course it's not JUST hispanic influences to our culture, but ideological influences that conflict with the traditional American character. And left unchecked, growing numbers of any people with an ideology and philosophy in incompatible with the American character will eventually, and likely with growing speed, alter, distort and eventually dilute that character beyond recognition. Considering that character was such a force in the world, as well as the vehicle that propelled us to be that force, how could anyone not want to preserve it and feed it with only those newcomers that will perpetuate it?

In other discussions on illegal immigration, some, like Geoffrey, think we should just remove the doors altogether and let all who want to come here simply flow in at their pleasure and leisure without any restrictions whatsoever (save some token talk about restricting criminals). One alternative I had heard somewhere was to halt immigration for a time as we put forth ways to make legal all those who are here illegally, such as dividing the numbers of illegals by the amount we normally allow every year, about one million, and halting immigration for one year for each. That would mean, allowing no more immigration for 12 years, as there are thought to be 12 million illegals here now.

But I now say, just stop all immigration altogether. No more. Those who don't think have cried for immigration reform and I used to believe part of this whine was a cry for larger numbers to be allowed in every year, and I thought that once we seal the borders and enforce current laws that perhaps that could be done. But Duke has made me rethink the whole idea and now I see that we need to really be MORE restrictive in our policies in order to preserve the union. So now I see the following as the course we MUST follow:

1) Halt all immigration. The only exceptions would be those who are fleeing likely death at the hands of despotic leaders.

2) Seal the borders. Use all means at hand, be they fences, military patrols, drones, whatever. That would be Mexico AND Canada as well as ports along our eastern and western shores.

3) Remove all encentives for illegals to come here or remain. No more jobs (devastating penalties for hiring illegals), no schooling, no free medical care, no welfare bennies of any kind.

4) Deport illegals as we find them, granting only enough time to arrange for gathering family members or where applicable, sending American born kids to live with legal family or friends who will care for them.

5) When we've determined that we've rid ourselves of 75% of those now here illegally, begin allowing immigration to resume at levels no higher than 250,000 per year or whatever low number seems to work best.

6) Once immigration resumes, we must be selective in who we allow to enter and take part of the American way of life. We must see some indication that immigrants want to be Americans, not foreigners living here with legal status. And also, we must have skilled people come in in far greater percentages than unskilled.

I've spoken of moral decline in this country and this blog speaks of American Descent as an overriding theme. We cannot allow our nation to be degraded by the introduction of peoples who are not concerned with perpetuating the American way of life, her spirit and her place in the world.


Jim July 20, 2010 at 2:02 PM  

Of course it's not JUST hispanic influences to our culture, but ideological influences that conflict with the traditional American character.

Could you be a little more specific here? I'd like to know what hispanic influences and ideological influences specifically conflict with the "traditional American character" and thus apparently pose a grave danger to our nation.


Marshall Art July 20, 2010 at 2:49 PM  

Actually, Jim, I thought the following sentences fleshed out the concept rather well. But as an example, the article speaks of many from south of the border coming from more socialist nations/systems/economies, how ever you would like to view it, and are not adverse to similar programs or leanings by any of the leftist politicians here. They didn't find the life they liked in their own countries, but seem to think the underlying systems are worth supporting when something like it here is proposed.

But we didn't become a great nation due to the implementation of socialist economic policies or from socialist thinking amongst the general population. Thus, as more such people enter the country, there will be a natural pull in that direction of the overall popular sentiment.

This can be seen in the loss of traditional values being replaced by the left with something far less noble. As a result, there is what seems to be a growing toleration for deviant behaviors, not just that perhaps a greater percentage takes part, but that a greater percentage no longer views it as deviant. This is moral decline and a manifestation of American Descent.

In the same way, when large numbers of people enter our borders not with a desire to be American, but to transplant their culture to a place where they think they can maintain it AND take advantage of American largess, the culture will change. This is evident in the more wide-spread use of multiple languages in more and more areas of American life.

This is also true with certain elements of Arab migration to our country as they aren't always looking to become American without the hope of one day implementing Sharia law.

I think it's quite clear that we have enough trouble from elements within our nation who wish to fundamentally change America without also having to allow into our nation others who will by their mere presence change it as well.

I like the United States of America that was developing as a result of the original sentiments of the founders. Despite certain negative aspects that is natural in any human endeavor, it was a system and a culture worth keeping and defending and now it has become one that has already changed in a way over which the founders would kill themselves. So now we must stop and rekindle that spirit that made us the greatest nation on earth and part of that is to halt immigration, seal the borders, throw all illegals we come across and go back to allowing in only those that understand and respect what made America great.

Mark July 21, 2010 at 10:11 AM  

Or, we could just restrict them to San Francisco and wait to see how loud the Libs howl.

Bloviating Zeppelin July 21, 2010 at 6:25 PM  

I wish your six bullet points could occur. But I don't envision, in even the remotest sense, this EVER occurring in our nation.

We are on what NIN would classify as The Downward Spiral.

You can't stop it. I can't stop it. Neither you nor I will recognize this nation -- if it IS a nation -- in 30 years.


ELAshley July 22, 2010 at 9:03 AM  

Couple of rebuttal points...

3) free medical care. None whatsoever? An illegal shows up in the ER suffering, let's say, from a gunshot wound? He obviously can't pay for emergency procedures and surgery costs... do we throw the bum out on the street and let him die? We complain all the time (or, at least, I do) about the medical industries abandonment of the Hippocratic Oath... should we allow doctors to ignore the dying simply because they don't have a green card?

4) Allow the American born children to stay while deporting their parents? We can't do this either. What we SHOULD do is amend the Constitution, or amend the law itself, to declare that any child born after such-n-such date to illegal parents is not automatically afforded citizenship or any right pertaining to... and then enforce it. Once potential illegals realize and come to believe that they will not gain citizenship via their children's birth, this problem could be greatly reduced.

On a purely ideological level I agree with everything your trying to say here, but on a pure humanitarian level, I've got to take issue with some of your points.

I also have to agree wholeheartedly with BZ's assessment of 30 years from now. And, at the risk of being branded a conspiracy theorist, I'll direct your attention to Bush's attempt to begin erasing our southern and northern borders via that super highway that was supposed (supposed? Has it even been stopped? or started, for that matter?) link Mexico, economically, with both the US and Canada? Furthermore it has been the stated intention of the Bilderbergs to create another continental union not at all unlike the European model. In 30 years, it is my firm belief, that if the world hasn't by then blown the shit out of itself, the United States of America will cease to be an autonomous sovereign nation.

Citing the NIN reference, we ARE on a downward spiral. And there's no real stopping it. Winning in November will only slow the inevitable. The problem is not Liberal politicians and their Useful Idiot electorates, but Washington itself. The apparatus itself is dominated by liberal ideology, and the failed fourth estate has become no better than Orwell's pigs "clutching forks and knives, to eat the bacon!" Think: Animal Farm meets The White Album!

The America we grew to love and appreciate is gone. But the America the likes of which Dan and Ben love, is in ascendancy. And that is soon to be the new paradigm. I think the best we can hope for at present is to save enough of our personal rights and civil liberties as we can to see us through to that day when government will eventually be in charge of determining our benefit to society.

Fools like some who comment here can scoff all they wish, but they've proven themselves to be incapable of reasoned, honest-- let alone intelligent --thought. Truth be told, I have little respect for their intellects. They are, as Lenin once described, useful idiots. They cannot think for themselves. Every time they claim otherwise, while steadfastly supporting the current state of affairs and hypocrisies, proves they cannot.

Marshall Art July 22, 2010 at 11:37 AM  


Regarding free medical care, I would not advocate denying anything that deals with life-saving procedures for anyone, legal or illegal. There are legal citizens who could not pay for emergency care should they be shot and when death is imminent, care should be given without regard for ability to pay. My statement was general in nature and had in mind all those (and we can include citizens as well) who use the emergency room for non-life-threatening issues. I have no beef with doctors and citizens who use their own funds to provide free care to the poor, but with today's health care woes, abuses of humanitarian policies must be curtailed. And the least worthy of such humanitarian outreaches by our hospitals are those who don't belong here and are here illegally.

As to children born here, we certainly allow them to stay because they are citizens. I, personally, have no problem with the policy of citizenship by birth. But to allow them to stay doesn't mean that the parents must be forced to leave them here, or that they have no other options BUT to leave them here. No. If they must go home, they have no choice as parents but to take their kids with them. When the kids are able, or if the parents have arranged for legal citizens to care for them, the kids can stay or return. WE are not splitting up families, the illegals are by putting their kids in that position. If I was forced to move, I would certainly take MY kids with me. There'd be no other thought in my mind and certainly no whining about having my family split up. It's a false dilemna and it's meant to appeal to the heart, not the head, which is a deceitful thing to do.

As to the superhighway, I never heard if that was a real plan or not, or, that it would mean no border controls. All I've heard was that it was supposed to be more of a straight shot for the purposes of easing transport between the three nations. I don't know either way. I'm only saying that's the limit to what I've heard, except for conspiratorial-like claims about what such a plan is meant to mean as regards our sovereignty. As to the Bilderbergers, I don't think wealth can trump millions of pissed off Americans. This Tea Party movement is a result of such attitudes that were brewing over the last few administrations, if not longer. Now we're seeing people moved to shout their concerns and use their personal time to protest gov't action. Do you think it will lessen with more attacks on traditional American values and concepts? I don't. The movement may be only the initial erruption and I expect that like myself, people are looking for the Paul Ryans, Michelle Bachmans and Marco Rubios to affect some REAL change away from the socialist dimwits and back to Constitutional controls of the federal gov't. The look of America in thirty years will depend upon how people maintain the current attitude in that direction, how well we hold to the fire the feet of these "new" conservatives, and how well we hold each other accountable as regards taking part in the process.

Marshall Art July 22, 2010 at 11:38 AM  

The last thing we need to do is to think in terms of "the best we can hope for". That's defeatest. We need to continue to assert our philosphies and ideologies by taking every opportunity to voice them, to compare them to the inferior alternatives, and to demand that our opponents prove their ideas have ever worked or possibly can. Keep in mind the recent polls showing the percentages of conservatives, liberals and independents.

Also keep in mind that being mature, responsible adults is a full time job. Otherwise we're no better than liberals. The America we love has changed because we let it change. We allowed others to dictate the direction in which this country should be moving. This is particularly true of the last two elections. Recall the numbers of right-wing people who spoke of sitting out those elections "to teach them a lesson". That's abdication of responsibility and we're now paying the price with the worst president ever, running the show.

The story has never changed. Good people must not sit on the sidelines. We must be in the game, and in it to win it. We must articulate our positions and make them known because they are superior to the alternatives. We must demand that our opponents defend their stupid ideas, instead of letting them distort ours.

Jim July 22, 2010 at 10:13 PM  

the article speaks of many from south of the border coming from more socialist nations/systems/economies, how ever you would like to view it, and are not adverse to similar programs or leanings by any of the leftist politicians here. They didn't find the life they liked in their own countries, but seem to think the underlying systems are worth supporting when something like it here is proposed.

Read that again. Does that make sense to you? They are supposedly fleeing "socialist" countries because they think the US will implement a failed system better?

As a result, there is what seems to be a growing toleration for deviant behaviors, not just that perhaps a greater percentage takes part, but that a greater percentage no longer views it as deviant.

So you're suggesting that predominately Catholic people coming from Latin America are going to increase the tolerance for "deviant behavior" like homosexuality and abortion in America? Really?

Marshall Art July 23, 2010 at 1:00 AM  


Wasn't I using words that were small enough for you? C'mon, man. Read my comments again and then try to tell me that I was suggesting that latino immigrants are going to affect the level of acceptance for deviant behavior. OR, understand that I was comparing the change in our culture that would come over us by a greater influx of immigrants with no desire to be Americans, but rather just live as Mexicans, Ecuadorans, Columbians, whatever, in America. This would change our culture by the sheer numbers that would live this way. The change would be similar to the way people are fed the crap of the deviants to the extent that some people no longer care to fight it, as well as the numbers of young who have been conditioned to believe the behaviors are normal and no different than what traditional morals teaches.

I think what's obvious is that you didn't read the freakin' article at all, or else the point I was making, to which you referred at the start of your last comment, would have been unnecessary. What they are fleeing is poverty, lack of opportunity, and corruption. They know there is opportunity here, but they also know there are handouts of a level not seen in their country. Those handouts are what was expected under the socialist gov't they fled and seem to be the norm here. And as socialism is what they know, leftist policies aren't anathema to them as it is to normal thinking Americans. Don't forget, Jim. We have what are supposed to be highly educated people in THIS country who think socialism can work despite its horrid track record throughout human history. It's not surprising that the less educated of other countries will think the gov't is supposed to take care of them. It's common place here.

Jim July 25, 2010 at 9:35 PM  

despite [socialism's] horrid track record throughout human history.

Really? Have any citations to support that very broad statement?

Marshall Art July 26, 2010 at 9:29 AM  

Jim asked.

This link has two articles that serves the purpose.

ELAshley July 26, 2010 at 9:50 AM  

For those who don't like to read...

Solid, Hard Socialist Failures:
Nazi Germany
USSR (Lenin and Stalin's regimes specifically)
Every Soviet satellite state
N. Korea

More recently:
Soft Failures:

Greece name but a few

Socialism has failed everywhere it's been tried. Even Europe is beginning to change their socialist ways; seeing how socialism has tended to hurt rather than help their societies. America hasn't learned the lessons Europe and the rest of the world has because America, up until now, has never been socialist, and those American elites who favor it have merely a 'romantic grasp' of its realities. Folk like actor Danny Glover, for instance, loves Cuba, but he doesn't have to live there, does he? He's insulated-- meaning, he's rich and he lives in a free nation... but not for much longer.

Mark July 26, 2010 at 10:08 AM  

OK. We Conservatives have argued that Socialism doesn't work and hasn't worked everywhere it's been tried. We are correct.

Liberals nevertheless still insist there is a way to make it work and still support it's implementation in the United States of America.

Now, here is the reason why socialism hasn't worked up until now, and, more importantly, why it cannot work here in the good 'ol US of A:

Socialism depends on the agreement of every man woman and child to share equally in all things, goods, and services.

But the human personality will not let that happen. We are all different. Some of us are greedy. Some of us are charitable. Some of us are nice, Some of us are evil. Some of us are selfish, and some of us are selfless. Some people have tremendous drive and ambition, while others want to sit on their arse and let everyone else take care of them.

There are as many differences in the personality of human beings as there are stars in the Heavens.

Yes, we are all created equal, but none of us grow up that way, and no one, especially not any government, can or ever will, change that fact.

Socialism with it's "from every one according to his means, to everyone according to their needs" philosophy is and always will be a utopian liberal pipe dream with no basis in reality. Real life doesn't work that way, and real people aren't wired that way.

The very fact that we continue to argue about this illustrates my point. Different personalities clash on everything, let alone socialism.

Dan Trabue July 26, 2010 at 2:22 PM  

Socialism has failed everywhere it's been tried.

You left off Nicaragua, which was leaning socialist in the 1980s. They failed. If, by fail, you mean that the US supported an illegal war of terrorism which undermined the democratically elected gov't there.

Sure, if a superpower wages an illegal war of terrorism against you, gets caught doing so and charged with - and convicted of - war crimes and then fails to make restitution because, you know, they're a superpower and as such are above the law, then sometimes such systems "fail."

Or, if you want to look at it that way, are undermined by criminal behavior.

Funny how that happens.

ELAshley July 26, 2010 at 2:40 PM  


It "failed," Dan, because people would rather they had choice than the imposition of no-choice handed down by a centralized government. People who love freedom despise despots

Dan Trabue July 26, 2010 at 2:52 PM  

Actually, I've been to Nicaragua, Eric. The people there asked me how we Americans could allow a brute like Reagan to come in and destroy their nation.

You'll have to take it up with the people of Nicaragua, to whom we owe billions of dollars and an apology for war crimes - you know, the ones we were convicted of in a court of law.

I'm no defender of socialism as an economic system, I DO think it tends to just not work as gov't policy and it does too often cause issues with human liberty. Still, to deny the problems caused by a capitalistic society that lead to the downfall of a socialist leader is to turn a blind eye towards our own sins.

You fool, Jesus reminds us, first remove the plank from your own eye and then you can see to help remove the speck from your neighbor's eye.

You can't seriously look at the history of Nicaragua and the US and say that the presidency and policies of Ortega failed solely because of his own policies. The US bankrupted Nicaragua by our illegal and on-going war of terrorism there.

I believe Ortega WOULD have failed eventually, because there was much corruption in his administration. But let's not be blind to history, either. We're all too intelligent for that.

ELAshley July 26, 2010 at 3:07 PM  

Thanks Dan, but this isn't a discussion about how horrible Reagan was or how abused the Nicaraguans were treated by the US or Ortega or the Sandinistas. If you would care to opine on the subject at hand, without injecting pet grievances (beaten like dead horses over countless posts here and elsewhere) feel free. Otherwise...

Truth is, whether you or anyone else cares to admit, socialism is an idea and ideology steeped in delusion. It cannot work. Nor has it worked, ever. Anywhere. Nor can it work here, despite the best intentions of president Obama.

ELAshley July 26, 2010 at 3:08 PM  

There is ALWAYS corruption if Socialism.

Marshall Art July 26, 2010 at 3:40 PM  

Jeez, Eric! Don't you know that Dan (for the first time saying HE went to Nicaragua) spoke to every single Nicaraguan. What we did there was about as illegal as France helping us during our Revolution. Whenever convenient, Dan sides with legality over morality.

This concludes my comments regarding Dan's goofy defense of a communist supported gov't re-elected with less than 40% of the vote. "Democratically elected" my Polish hindquarters!

Mark July 26, 2010 at 4:22 PM  

In Dan's idiotic defense of Socialism, all he did was affirm what we've already said. That Socialism doesn't work, regardless of who backs it. Even the greatest President this country ever had wasn't successful in helping to establish a socialistic state, even with the might of America's armed forces backing him!

If Reagan couldn't do it, it can't be done.

Dan can't honestly argue that socialism works because that (and he should know) would be bearing false witness. So, he defends it without really defending it.

Hey, Dan! Why don't you argue against my point about why socialism can't work? Give it your best shot!

Dan, your pathetic obfuscation is wearing thin.

Mark July 26, 2010 at 4:24 PM  

Art, since Dan stooped to calling us all fools, would it be OK with you if I now call him a moron?

You know, first blood and all that.

Dan Trabue July 26, 2010 at 4:29 PM  

There is ALWAYS corruption if Socialism.

Here's a tidbit of knowledge: There's ALWAYS corruption if Capitalism, too.

Don't be blinded by your ideologies, fellas.

ELAshley July 26, 2010 at 4:43 PM  

I did say 'if" didn't I?

Actually, were I to take the time to better state my point, I'd ultimately say, socialism always tends toward corruption and evil. The same cannot be said of capitalism.

That socialism pits a very few over the lives and surpluses enjoyed by the very many is obvious. The same cannot be said of capitalism. Especially when the very 'least of these,' in America, own flatscreens, xbox's, vehicles in better shape than my own, and EBT. Capitalism allows everyone an opportunity, Socialism allows only what the state decides one deserve.

Mark July 26, 2010 at 5:49 PM  

Why don't we turn this discussion to what's right with Socialism?

We Conservatives have explained ad nauseum what is wrong with Socialism, perhaps Dan can enlighten us as to what's right with Socialism.

I'm sure that Dan, in his wisdom, has some very salient points to support his apparent belief that Socialism is better than Capitalism.

Dan Trabue July 26, 2010 at 10:16 PM  

his apparent belief that Socialism is better than Capitalism.

Mark, if I repeat what I've already said: That I DON'T favor socialism nor do I wish to see it implemented - If I repeat that 1,000 more times, do you think that perhaps you could understand this concept: I'm not a socialist, nor do I wish to see socialism implemented?

If I DID like socialism and if gov't instituted socialism was my preferred economic system, don't you think I'm entirely capable of saying so?

Dan Trabue July 26, 2010 at 10:25 PM  

But how about it? How about a list of problems of both socialism AND capitalism?

Capitalism: A system based on greed, based upon the magical pollyanna belief that IF everyone acts in their own perceived best interests, that some how everything will be sweetness and light?

Socialism: A system based on (theoretically) the notion that there CAN be enough for everyone? That even the least of us can be cared for, as long as we're willing to share?

Of the notions themselves - the ideals involved - certainly, socialism wins out over capitalism as to its idealism and sincerity. Now, the reason I DON'T support socialism is because the ideal - which I support very much - can't be enacted by gov't fiat and we can do damage to liberty and freedom of conscience by trying to do so.

Now, just because I don't believe socialism is workable - despite its high ideals - that does not mean that the more crass, selfish and worldly "might makes right" approach of capitalism is a perfect solution, either. Which is why I am just as strongly opposed to totally hands off laissez faire capitalism as I am to socialism.

Such a hands off pollyanna (based on nothing) approach to HOPING ("please o please o please") things will work out if people are set free to be as greedy as they can possibly be would lead to a hell on earth and I'm no fan of that.

Might does NOT make right. Money does NOT buy happiness. Greed is NOT good. Gordon Gekko was wrong.

Don't buy such a worldly view. Beware of the trappings of wealth. They're just as deadly - if not more so - than the trappings of blind idealism.

Marshall Art July 26, 2010 at 11:37 PM  


In typical leftist fashion, you treat each system quite differently. You give capitalism negative connotations, but don't do the same for socialism. If you wish to insist that you are NOT a socialist, you're doing a poor job. I doubt you'd have any problem favoring socialism in a more honest way if you thought it COULD be enacted by gov't fiat, or as you deceitfully like to call it, "WE THE PEOPLE". (Deceitful because you have a poor notion of what the people want or how they behave in general.)

Capitalism is not based on greed. This is a totally leftist, and I'd say, socialist description of the superior system. It is superior because it allows people to seek their own level BECAUSE it provides them with the privilege of keeping what they produce and allowing them to determine on their own the base manner in which to dispose of what they produce.

Capitalism has provided the means by which people with ideas can bring those ideas to market throught their own sweat and sacrifice and justly profit by their sweat, sacrifice and ideas.

Capitalism allows those same people to employ any number of people in mass producing and marketing those ideas providing an income for those who have no ideas or the ambition to develop what ideas they may have. Yet at any time, another with ideas can earn while developing because of the employment provided by the first guy.

Capitalism provides goods and services for the masses by the competition it encourages. More people have more choices because of the competition. The spirit of entreprenuership allows demand to satisfied by a host of suppliers so that the consumer can dictate what is supplied and how it is priced by the quality and service of each supplier chooses on their own to give.

Capitalism allows for an atmosphere whereby innovation can find it's legitimate level, which is really only limited to human imagination and ambition. (And ambition is what socialists regard as "greed".)

Capitalism allows for envious schmucks who pretend to care about simple living when they are really lacking in ambition and the ethic to bust their asses in order to attain the wealth that is so often used by far better people to truly help others. Wealth those same schmucks have no problem taking under the banner of "WE THE PEOPLE" in order to do things they aren't willing to sweat, sacrifice and risk on their own to accomplish. Capitalism even allows for such. Yet, socialism does NOT allow for anything that capitalism bestows upon any society that chooses it as its economic system.

Dan Trabue July 27, 2010 at 6:12 AM  

As soon as the land of any country has all become private property, the landlords, like all other men, love to reap where they never sowed, and demand a rent even for its natural produce.

~Adam Smith

Consumption is the sole end and purpose of all production; and the interest of the producer ought to be attended to, only so far as it may be necessary for promoting that of the consumer.

~Adam Smith

I have never known much good done by those who affected to trade for the public good.

~Adam Smith

It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker that we expect our dinner, but from their regard to their own interest.

~Adam Smith

With the greater part of rich people, the chief enjoyment of riches consists in the parade of riches.

~Adam Smith

Mark July 27, 2010 at 8:01 AM  

"I DON'T favor socialism nor do I wish to see it implemented - If I repeat that 1,000 more times, do you think that perhaps you could understand this concept: I'm not a socialist, nor do I wish to see socialism implemented?"

Then why are you arguing?

Of course, it's not true that you don't favor socialism. If it were, you wouldn't be trying to build a case for it and against capitalism.

Two explanations for your argument:

1. You really do favor socialism despite what you say.

2. You just like to argue.

Marshall Art July 27, 2010 at 8:21 AM  

Dan makes assumptions about the wealthy that he can't know. He paints them all with the same brush in a manner unChristian.

If it came to pass that all Americans supported a change to a socialist system, Dan would not hestitate to join them. This fantasy would indicate that all people have become so caring about others above themselves. Unfortunately, this goes against human nature and leads to less productivity as has been demonstrated in every socialist culture including the early settlements of infant America.

Yet capitalism has shown itself to allow for the very same generosity that Dan thinks is inconsistent with it.

The fact is that neither system has anything to do with the morality of the people within them, but capitalism raises the level of everyone while accomodating both the greedy and the generous in allowing both to thrive to the extent of their own ambitions. Socialism lowers the level of everyone by the drag of those who feed off the efforts of the greedy and generous until few feel compelled to exert more effort than necessary to survive.

Dan Trabue July 27, 2010 at 8:44 AM  

It's a good thing I have Mark and Marshall to tell people what I REALLY think, because I obviously can't get it right.

Silly, fellas. Seriously silly.

I'm getting ready to post a sermon excerpt from my church that deals with some of these issues in a way that perhaps you all can see the problems I have with socialism - as well as capitalism. The truth is, the problems I have with socialism are many of the SAME PROBLEMS that I have with capitalism - the problem is concentrations of wealth.

Perhaps you can see that in this latest post.

But I doubt it.

ELAshley July 27, 2010 at 8:50 AM  

Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress....But then I repeat myself.

-Mark Twain

I contend that for a nation to try to tax itself into prosperity is like a man standing in a bucket and trying to lift himself up by the handle.

-Winston Churchill

A government which robs Peter to pay Paul can always depend on the support of Paul.

-George Bernard Shaw

The inherent vice of capitalism is the unequal sharing of the blessings. The inherent blessing of socialism is the equal sharing of misery.

-Winston Churchill

A government big enough to give you everything you want, is strong enough to take everything you have.

-Thomas Jefferson

No man's life, liberty, or property is safe while the legislature is in session.

-Mark Twain

To take from one, because it is thought that his own industry and that of his fathers has acquired too much, in order to spare others, who, or whose fathers have not exercised equal industry and skill, is to violate arbitrarily the first principle of association, 'the guarantee to every one of a free exercise of his industry, and the fruits acquired by it.

-Thomas Jefferson

Socialism in general has a record of failure so blatant that only an intellectual could ignore or evade it.

-Thomas Sowell

I can find no warrant for such an appropriation in the Constitution; and I do not believe that the power and duty of the General Government ought to be extended to the relief of individual suffering which is in no manner properly related to the public service or benefit. A prevalent tendency to disregard the limited mission of this power and duty should, I think, be steadily resisted, to the end that the lesson should be constantly enforced that, though the people support the Government, the Government should not support the people. ... The friendliness and charity of our fellow countrymen can always be relied on to relieve their fellow citizens in misfortune. This has been repeatedly and quite lately demonstrated. Federal aid in such cases encourages the expectation of paternal care on the part of the Government and weakens the sturdiness of our national character, while it prevents the indulgence among our people of that kindly sentiment and conduct which strengthens the bonds of a common brotherhood.

-Grover Cleveland

I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them.

-Thomas Jefferson

My reading of history convinces me that most bad government results from too much government.

-Thomas Jefferson

In the 20th century, the Soviet Union made the state role absolute...In the long run, this made the Soviet economy totally uncompetitive. This lesson cost us dearly.

-Vladamir Putin (warning the US against socialism)

The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not.

-Thomas Jefferson

The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's money to spend.

-Margaret Thatcher

ELAshley July 27, 2010 at 9:02 AM  

I don't understand how Dan can have the same reservations about Capitalism as he does Socialism; wherein the concentration of wealth resides in BOTH.

Capitalism: wealth resides in the pockets of those who earn it.

Socialism: wealth resides in the pockets of government.

Capitalism? Pick yourself up by your own bootstraps, earn your own personal measure of wealth and dispense it as you please, where you please, within the law.

Socialism? Don't work too hard because the government is only going to take the wealth you generate and give it to your neighbor who gets stoned on booze every morning for breakfast before going out to do as little as possible.

Which would Jesus prefer? Be careful how you answer that... I'm letting you know up front that this is a trick question.

Marshall Art July 27, 2010 at 9:36 AM  

I'm sure we are all anxiously awaiting a Jeff St. sermon where preachers of questionable Biblical understanding grace their members with equally questionable teaching. This would be played out in any sermon dealing with "concentrations of wealth" as if such a thing were certain sin.

Dan looks at "concentrations of wealth" as something on which he, or anyone else with no personal possession of such a concentration, has any right to comment. The Dans of the world spend far too much time worrying about how those who are in control of a "concentration of wealth" dispose of that wealth, when instead, they should be worrying about building their own conentration if such concentrations be their concern. If the Dans of the world are truly unconcerned with building such a "concentration of wealth" of their own, if they are truly concerned only with so-called "simple living", then I don't see how they feel justified in ANY "concentration of wealth" not their own. This is envy of the worst kind. It is reprehensible to claim one doesn't not care to have more than the necessities while at the same time daring to speak on what others do with their surplusses, even worse, to suppose that the development of any "concentration of wealth" indicates only some negative assignation such as "greed".

If the Dans of the world are so concerned about "concentrations of wealth", there can be no better remedy than for each of them to get off their dead asses and develop a concentration of their own for use as they see fit, thereby preaching by their own example. I dare say that even with Dan's own small personal concentration that he does not suffer anyone to tell him what to do with it.


Marshall Art July 27, 2010 at 9:49 AM  

Regarding Adam Smith, with only a passing knowledge of this figure, I took a little time to look him up and found that Dan's well known penchant for misapplying quotes, verses and statements is once again present in presenting us with Smith. Case in point, this quote:

"It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker that we expect our dinner, but from their regard to their own interest."

The true meaning of this quote indicates that without the self-interest of the people mentioned, no dinner would be had, or worse, it must be scrounged up in whatever manner the hungry can muster. The quote speaks to the self-interest of those people as being THE means by which the dinner is made available. Smith isn't knocking their self-interests, but praising it.

Indeed, Smith felt that self-interest is what makes charity possible. He does not, like Dan does, imply that self-interest equals greed.

Dan suffers from his poor understanding of Christian teaching regarding wealth. It is not wealth that is the problem. It is man's view of wealth that can lead to problems. Putting wealth ahead of God is the problem. Storing up treasures in order to help others, even while one enjoys the fruits of one's labors, is not a problem at all, particularly if one is not tied to their treasure.

Dan seems to want us to believe that one cannot help but be totally corrupted by the possession of great wealth and uses this nonsensical belief to justify his own rejection of the effort required in its aquisition. Whether this is true, or rather he truly believes it is so that the wealthy are corrupt, neither case justifies his input into deciding how the wealth of others be used. Far better he preach the proper behavior of the intentionally impoverished.

Dan Trabue July 27, 2010 at 12:17 PM  

For any passersby, suffice to say that if Marshall thinks "Dan thinks..." you can safely gather that Dan does NOT think that.

Marshall has a problem with understanding my words and has this belief that he knows better than I do what I believe.


Marshall Art July 27, 2010 at 12:46 PM  

Any passerby can make their own judgements as to whether my conclusions based on your words are legitimately drawn from those words. Rather than whine about being misrepresented, why not clarify for those passersby so that they will not be so cruelly misled? Aside from that, you'll note, if you have any capacity for understanding at all, that my final comment does not rely on what you may or may not be thinking. It refers only to your belief that the wealthy can be made to give a greater percentage in order to satisfy wacky liberal notions of fairness.

Dan Trabue July 27, 2010 at 1:16 PM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dan Trabue July 27, 2010 at 1:18 PM  

Clarify what, exactly? That when I said, "I do not support socialism, as I don't believe it works at the governmental level," that I MEANT to say "I DO support socialism???"

I meant what I said, not the opposite meaning which you appear to derive from what I said.

I'm not sure HOW to clarify that, when I say, "I don't support socialism" what I MEAN is, "I don't support socialism."

How would you suggest I do that in any way other than just what I've already repeatedly said?


It refers only to your belief that the wealthy can be made to give a greater percentage in order to satisfy wacky liberal notions of fairness.

"Fairness," is not a wacky liberal notion. It is a basic human understanding of what is good and right.

But to clarify: If you refer here to progressive tax schemes, as I and crazy socialists like Thomas Jefferson both support, I support progressive taxation for reasons of justice. It would be unjust to expect the man who makes $10,000 a year to pay 10% in taxes and at the same time the man who makes $1 million a year to pay 10% in taxes.

The man or woman who makes $10k a year who pays $1000 in taxes has taken a hard, hard hit. This is because we need certain minimal amounts to survive. However, the household that makes $1 million/year who pays even 40% in taxes STILL has $600,000 and it is no big problem to squeak by on $600k.

It would be unjust to charge a flat tax in both situations. A progressive tax is a more just and reasonable way to manage taxation.

I suppose if you wanted to say that all those who make under something like $25,000-50,000 a year don't pay any taxes and that everyone above that pays a flat tax, you might have a bit stronger of a case. It's the oppression of the poorest that I mostly object to.

I still think that Jefferson was right, though. And Jesus.

"From the one who has received much, much will be expected..."


"The rich alone use imported articles, and on these alone the whole taxes of the General Government are levied. ... Our revenues liberated by the discharge of the public debt, and its surplus applied to canals, roads, schools, etc., the farmer will see his government supported, his children educated, and the face of his country made a paradise by the contributions of the rich alone, without his being called on to spend a cent from his earnings."

~Thomas Jefferson

I would love to hear you to respond to Jefferson's notions of prefering to see taxes paid exclusively by the rich of his day. If Jefferson were saying those sorts of things today, would you call him a socialist, too?

Marshall Art July 27, 2010 at 3:14 PM  

Clarify the difference between socialism and your call for wealth redistribution via taxation. Only a socialist would insist that capitalism oppresses the poor. It doesn't and no socialist has proven any connection between the two.

While you're at it, perhaps you can come up with better quotes before trying to play the "I guess that makes Jesus and Jefferson socialists then too then doesn't it then?" spittle. As I said elsewhere, this Jefferson quote was NOT a call to levy more taxes on the wealthy. It is a statement of what was already in place, and how the revenues derived from taxing what only the rich could afford to buy was being used. There is nothing in that statement that suggests they should be taxed even more. Now, if you are calling for the federal gov't of today to be supported on only revenues derived from the purchase of luxury items only the rich can afford, make the case.

But that's not the case you're making at all. YOU, who won't lift a finger to better your own situation, feel you have some right to decide what's fair for others to suffer, to decide what's "good enough" for them to live on, and you feel it is some bullshit idea of "social justice" to force that money out of them.

Christ's statement was not a mandate for forced charity, either. Indeed, I can't think of any teaching of Christ that wasn't directed soley to YOU, or to ME, that is, to each individual individually. NOTHING that Christ ever said justified jokers like you assuming you have anything to say about how others enjoy the fruits of their labors.

At the same time, Christ DID teach so many lessons that are not only ignored, which leads to the very poverty stricken stituations you blame on the producers of this nation, but are NEVER spoken of by the same buffoons that would further steal from the producers.

More than anything else, the poor in this country are so by their own choices. By the things they do and don't do. Rarely can one point to a true case of someone being impoverished due to "oppression" of any kind other than the rountine oppression of living life. The poor constitute most who have chosen to do something other than perservere against the oppression of living life, who have denied themselves by resisting the call to discipline themselves. Most have chosen immediate gratification over delaying it until their efforts allow for it.

You can speak of those who make little money and the hardships they endure and more than likely they set themselves up for those hardships. How many of them kept their pants zipped until they could afford a family? How many denied themselves flat-screens and other luxuries until they had accumulated an acceptable emergency fund? How many eat right? How many sleep enough? How many do what they're supposed to do so as not to be a burden to others BEFORE they think of pleasure for themselves?

Is it right to have a flat tax that everyone should pay? Of course it is. Everyone has the responsibility of citizenship to do their part and if their part is 10% or 20%, they are obliged to live accordingly. It doesn't matter what the rich guy has left over, because more often than not, that wealth is a result of the very actions not taken by the poor.

You're a socialist, Dan.

Dan Trabue July 27, 2010 at 4:10 PM  


Clarify the difference between socialism and your call for wealth redistribution via taxation.

If you will notice in MY ACTUAL WORDS of the things that I ACTUALLY HAVE SAID and those things that I'VE TOLD YOU THAT I BELIEVE that I never (ie, did not ever at no time ever in our history or in my own personal history in this real world) issued a "call for wealth redistribution via taxation."

And why did I never say that? Why, simply because I don't believe it.

I'm fine with paying for our common needs via taxation, as are most Americans, as was Jefferson and the founders. Now, we may have different ideas about how best to do taxation, but we all believe in paying for our common needs via taxation.

Are you in favor of wealth redistribution via taxation because you support the state building roads? Or, is that simply part of the price of living in a society? Might we SAY that you believe in wealth redistribution because you believe in taking the tax dollars of poor and other Americans and giving it away to road builders and the motorists who would benefit from roads?

No, that would NOT be a fair statement of facts. You support taxation for roads (I'm guessing) simply because that's the price to pay for living in a society such as ours.

I support taxation (and specifically progressive taxation) NOT in order for there to be wealth redistribution, but rather, just to pay for our common needs.

So, taking a close look at my ACTUAL words, I think you can find my actual position: I support progressive taxation to pay for our common needs, as decided by we, the people.


Dan Trabue July 27, 2010 at 4:11 PM  

Now, supporting taxation for the purpose of paying for our common needs is something we've done since the beginning of our nation and it's something that clearly Jefferson and the founders supported. Further, it's clear that Jefferson, at least, supported a PROGRESSIVE tax scheme.

That is: Jefferson hoped to pay for this "workers paradise" where the farmer (ie, the average poor working guy) paid NOTHING or little in taxes and instead, Jefferson hoped to see ALL our common needs paid for by taxes upon the wealthy alone.

So, I ask again: WAS Jefferson a socialist, too? Yes? No? Possibly? You can't answer?

Because, unless you're calling our founders socialist, then I am no more socialist than they were (less, since I don't hope to see ALL our funding come exclusively from the rich, as Jefferson said).

Beyond that, hoping to see all or most tax money come from the wealthiest is simply NOT socialism. As noted before, socialism has a definition and that definition does not include the notion of progressive taxation in an otherwise capitalist nation.

‘When You Reach a Certain Level of Comfort, There's Nothing Wrong with Paying Somewhat More’

John McCain

Or, if you don't like McCain, how about ADAM SMITH?

"The necessaries of life occasion the great expense of the poor. They find it difficult to get food, and the greater part of their little revenue is spent in getting it. The luxuries and vanities of life occasion the principal expense of the rich, and a magnificent house embellishes and sets off to the best advantage all the other luxuries and vanities which they possess. A tax upon house-rents, therefore, would in general fall heaviest upon the rich; and in this sort of inequality there would not, perhaps, be anything very unreasonable. It is not very unreasonable that the rich should contribute to the public expense, not only in proportion to their revenue, but something more than in that proportion."

IF supporting progressive taxation is socialism, then our founder, Thomas Jefferson and Mr Capitalism himself, Adam Smith, were both socialists.

Is that your position?

Mark July 27, 2010 at 6:29 PM  

You still haven't answered the question, Dan. If you agree with us Conservatives that socialism doesn't work, why are you still arguing in it's favor, or against capitalism?

Why are you arguing?

Am I correct in assuming that you just like to argue, or are you being intellectually dishonest and actually support Socialism?

Mark July 27, 2010 at 6:30 PM  

Your lips say "no, no", but your stated beliefs say,"yes, yes".

Are you bearing false witness, Dan?

Dan Trabue July 27, 2010 at 7:16 PM  

Soooo, that would be, "No, it doesn't matter how many times you tell us your actual position, we'll still not be able to understand it and will accuse you of other stuff cuz, you know, it's easier to make stuff up than try to understand another person's actual position, which requires reading and thinking and other stuff that hurts our brains...," is that what you're telling me?

Dan Trabue July 27, 2010 at 7:39 PM  

Just for giggles, since it's obvious to most anyway...

Marshall said...

Christ's statement was not a mandate for forced charity, either.

Never said otherwise. I would strongly disagree with anyone who'd suggest that Jesus mandated forced charity.

Marshall went on...

Indeed, I can't think of any teaching of Christ that wasn't directed soley to YOU, or to ME, that is, to each individual individually.

Then read more. You're missing an awful lot of the Bible story if that's what you think.

Unfortunately, you're probably not to blame. That's the way modern evangelicals too often tend to teach it - "Just Jesus and Me!"

Missing that Jesus BEGAN his ministry by a reference to the Jubilee laws, saying, "I have come to bring Good News to the poor, liberty for the captive, health for the sick, the day of God's good favor (ie, the day of Jubilee."

The Jubilee laws were exactly communal-minded laws. ALL of Israel were expected to work together to deal with issues of poverty by heeding some specific and pretty ingenious rules. If one or two Israelis did so, it would not serve its purpose. The Jubilee laws, which Jesus begins his ministry citing WERE EXACTLY communal rules (ie, not "individual individually" rules/teachings).

Jesus taught over and over about the kingdom of God, which was/is a collective. It's not just about "God n' me," it's about God's kingdom come, on earth as in heaven, amongst ALL who would follow.

Jesus teaches about the great feast that ALL were invited to (after the rich rejected their place, of course). Over and over, you'll see Kingdom living as a theme in the Bible, in Jesus' teachings and beyond.

Jesus went on teaching how faith groups were to act, as a group. He laid the foundation for his Body, the Church to function as a GROUP, not as a bunch of rugged individualists.

If you miss the biblical teachings on corporate living, you're missing a central Christian theme in favor of a more modern- and Western-flavored evangelicalism, it seems to me.

One man's opinion.

Marshall Art July 27, 2010 at 7:48 PM  

"Further, it's clear that Jefferson, at least, supported a PROGRESSIVE tax scheme."

Not by the quote YOU keep posting. You'll have to provide more. In fact, you'll have to provide far more than the Jefferson quotes presented by Eric, which tell a completely different tale, than the one you're trying to sell. I gave you a better explanation for the Jefferson quote you've been using and upon which your argument is relying. You haven't shown why my take is in the least bit wrong.

As for McCain, you've presented a bit of why conservatives don't look to him for answers. He only got my vote because the alternative was so desperately awful, as history is plainly showing was true. That quote is why he doesn't get high marks from the American Conservative Union and hasn't for the last twenty years or more.

Regarding Smith, nothing in THAT quote suggests he's calling for forced contributions via taxation. The question there is whether or not he's speaking to those contributions being made voluntarily or by gov't force. It doesn't say. You only want it to because you're a socialist.

Progressive taxing IS wealth redistribution. Flat taxation is NOT. Flat tax means every gives that proportion to which Smith referred and gives it equally in the same percentage. That's what proportion means. Indeed, the wealthy are always providing for more in sheer dollars even if they were taxed at a smaller percentage than less wealthy people (assuming it is not so much smaller as to be equal in total dollars). This is what Jefferson was talking about in the quote you offered; that they were ALREADY taking care of paying the gov't's needs on their plentiful revenues alone.

So you continue to show that you neither understand the people you quote, nor do you understand that taking from the producers to account for the less productive is INDEED a socialist position. By doing this you are seeking to equal out the total contribution to gov't and pretend it's from the people, as opposed to only some of the the people. What's worse is that by your selfish and lazy philosophy of "simple living", you put yourself in a position by which you'll never have to do any heavy lifting tax-wise, and possibly none at all, depending on how socialist Obama gets to be, or how socialist the next Democratic schmuck is.


Marshall Art July 27, 2010 at 7:48 PM  

And speaking of lazy, how lazy is it to try to use the building of roads as an example of wealth redistribution? What a complete crock of an argument! No matter what form of taxation is employed, the supporting of infrastructure is what one of the few things for which taxes are SUPPOSED to be used. The fact that YOU won't use every road is a matter of choice by YOU. But how much the wealthy have to contribute is NOT a choice if enough greedy socialist lazy-asses get to vote. It's plain that people like you want something for nothing and hide that behind BS calls for helping the truly needy. YOU, DAN TRABUE, have NO RIGHT or justification for expecting ANYTHING from those who have much.

The fact of the matter is that the wealthy already provide far more than whiney little socialists like you are willing to acknowledge. Not only do they produce more revenue for the gov't (which went UP after the Bush tax cuts), but they provide jobs, services and products and more often than you're willing to admit, donate tons of cash to charity, often creating their own charities to do so.

I recently was invited to accompany a neighbor to a benefit for ALS. My father-in-law passed away because of it so that's why the neighbor popped for our family to go. It was quite a high-line affair. We were WAY the hell out of our element as we attended this event in downtown Chicago at the Four Seasons Hotel. In the span of about four hours (tops), they raised half a million dollars from these stingy rich bastards who care nothing for the poor and can't wait to oppress them. This is commonplace amongst the American wealthy and petty, little envious toads like all socialists are refuse to come to grips with it. The point here is that the wealthy don't need the likes of you voting to force more of their wealth out of them. They give all by their own sense of Christian brotherhood. (Or Jewish, as the case may be.) Hell, even the truly greedy wealthy guys give so as to appear generous and their facade generates more than you'll likely give in your whole lifetime.

None of this exists in a socialist state because no one can make any money. Yet, the poor still exist and often in greater percentages.

You're a socialist, Dan, and you preach the wrong stuff and to the wrong people.

Marshall Art July 27, 2010 at 7:57 PM  

Jubilee laws were enacted so that each individual Jew comes to understand how they were to live. That they were instituted as civil law is irrelevant. God didn't care about gov'ts. He cared about how people honored HIM by their living. If people only give because the law, whether instituted by God or not, compels him to do so, then they are not acting in a manner God would like. God wants us to give compelled by our own sense of charity, knowing that it pleases Him for us to do so, not because we have no choice. You continue to show your poor understanding. Go ahead and try to demonstrate Christ teaching about "corporate" living. I could use some further entertainment.

Mark implied correctly that you say one thing, such as "I don't believe in socialism", but then you immediately follow up with socialist sentiment and ideas. We know you far better than YOU do and we've never even met face to face.

ELAshley July 28, 2010 at 9:06 AM  

"Jesus taught over and over about the kingdom of God, which was/is a collective. It's not just about "God n' me," it's about God's kingdom come, on earth as in heaven, amongst ALL who would follow."

And yet he taught this: Matthew 25:14-30. What I find [particularly interesting is verses 28-29:

"Take therefore the talent from him, and give it unto him which hath ten talents. For unto every one that hath shall be given, and he shall have abundance: but from him that hath not shall be taken away even that which he hath."

That too is the Kingdom of Heaven, Dan.

You talk a lot about not being a socialist, yet you appear to ascribe to what you perceive to be socialist laws handed down by scripture.

First, nowhere in scripture is espoused the idea that everyone pool their resources together-- individuals denying themselves of the wealth of their labor --to provide sustenance for the unproductive. Not even the Jubilee Laws say this.

And, digressing a bit, though Jesus declared he was come to... (Jubilee Laws, as you perceive it)... he was rejected. The Jubilee would have been enacted had he been accepted (rather than crucified). We are not under the Jubilee Laws (which you're misusing); we are not under the LAW, of which the Jubilees are part and parcel. We are under grace. You advocate returning to the Law when you insist you're not a socialist, yet laud those very same tenets you see in the Jubilees (which aren't there). No commandment given by Jesus allows for the theft of life, labor, and property, by a centralized government entity, to feed, clothe, and provide labor-free boons to the unproductive. 2 Thessalonians 3:10,12 CLEARLY states that if a man would eat, he must work.

You say you're not a socialist, that you wouldn't support a socialist regime in America, yet you're bending over backward to defend it! Using scripture, no less! Which, I hasten to reiterate, is not biblical.

Charity (provision for the poor) is not commanded of governments, but of individuals. And nowhere is there justification for a government's theft of personal life, labor, property found in scripture. Jesus never taught this. He said, paraphrasing, 'if you want to be perfect, give all you have to the poor, and follow me.' That's an individual command, not a corporate one.

In Luke 19:2-10 it was Zacchaeus who decided upon the level of charity he would offer (50%), and Jesus accepted it saying "this day is salvation come to this house..." But immediately after this he launches into the above parable again, the most telling part being this:

"And he said unto them that stood by, Take from him the pound, and give it to him that hath ten pounds. (And they said unto him, Lord, he hath ten pounds.) For I say unto you, that unto every one which hath shall be given; and from him that hath not, even that he hath shall be taken away from him." --Luke 19:24-26

ELAshley July 28, 2010 at 9:21 AM  

What you, Dan, fail to grasp, is that the Kingdom of God in within individuals... saved individuals, still imperfect... but not any one else. Furthermore, Jubilee you see as the ideal for American welfare is impossible in the here and now; we will not SEE the Kingdom of God/Heaven until Christ returns.

Furthermore, asking me or anyone else to support a government that desires to destroy personal wealth in this country, all in the name of redistribution of wealth-- 'a Godly endeavor,' you ardently claim --while doing its dead-level best to REMOVE God from the public square, is an insult to every thinking Christian.

You advocate theft in the name of God. How different is this from what the Crusaders did in Palestine a thousand years ago? Because we attach God's name to it, it suddenly becomes holy writ? This is hubris on a dangerous level, Dan. Very dangerous.

Dan Trabue July 28, 2010 at 9:48 AM  

I guess we'll have to add Eric to the list of folk who read and yet do not comprehend. Sorry brudda. You don't understand my position, as evidenced by your suggestions of what my position is, which it ISN'T.

Advocate theft in the name of God? How horrid. Who would do such a thing?! Why, that would be like just deliberately misrepresenting someone's position! It would be wrong to do either of those, I'm sure you could agree...

Mark July 28, 2010 at 10:01 AM  

And, Dan still continues to misrepresent what the Bible says about the wealthy.

Take the story of the rich young ruler, for instance. Dan still insists that this young man's sin was having wealth. It was not. It was putting his wealth, or rather, the love of his wealth, before the love of God, a clear violation of one of the top ten commandments: "Thou shalt not have any other Gods before Me."

If the rich young ruler had been a poor young beggar who put his love of possessions (or anything else) before his love of God, he would have been equally as sinful.

Being wealthy is not a sin, Dan. Loving money more than God, or even as much as God, is the sin.

Money is not the root of all evil, Dan. The love of money is the root of all evil. There's a difference, Dan.

Jesus strongly recommended we give to the poor, but sadly for you, Dan, that is not one of the commandments.

And He never, under any circumstances, ever advocated that the Government should be the executor of our money.

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