The Leftist LGBT Agenda: Tyranny, not liberty.

Remember when the left used to accuse those on the right, especially the Religious Right, of trying to impose their ethics on others? I guess they wanted you to think that their goal was a libertarian country and they just wanted everyone to have individual freedoms to live as they saw fit. Well, think again.

As has become patently obvious over the past few years, those on the left, and especially activists from the LGBT community, are not interested in just having their rights to marry, or to do in their bedrooms what they want. Their goal is not to keep the government out of their bedrooms; their goal is to bring the government crashing down on our businesses, schools and churches. This isn’t a libertarian movement. It is actually a totalitarian, oppressive big government movement. They are telling those on the right, especially the religious right, that we do not have the right to believe what we want and to act on those beliefs, even if the LGBT community is not disenfranchised in any way.  They want to force us to change our views, using the power of the government.

If you think that this will not impact you, you had better wake up. The heat has been turned up on the pot in which this proverbial frog is cooking. If we don’t jump soon, we will be dead. To mix my metaphors, we are well on the way down the slippery slope.

The Threat to Private Businesses

Businesses that refuse to provide specific services to Gays and Lesbians are being prosecuted for their refusals. And recognize that these businesses are not discriminating against all services to Gays and Lesbians, but only certain practices, usually involving same-sex ceremonies, that they think violate their religious beliefs.

Melissa and Aaron Klein, owners of Sweet Cakes by Melissa in Oregon lost their shop and are facing huge fines as a result of refusing to bake a wedding cake for a lesbian couple who were getting married.[i]  And it wasn’t as if this couple couldn’t go up the street to get another wedding cake. The couple wasn’t disenfranchised in any way. The Kleins are not the only bakery in town. If you are gay, why would you want to get a cake from them unless it’s to make a political point?

Jack Phillips who owns Masterpiece Cakeshop in Lakewood, Colorado was told that he has to bake wedding cakes for same-sex couples and to direct his staff to attend diversity training sessions. And this was after Phillips refused to bake a wedding cake for the couple but offered to bake them anything else they wanted[ii].  He has also said that he has no problem baking a birthday cake for an LGBT person’s party, but just not a wedding cake because he feels like he would be participating in the ceremony. And just like the Kleins, this isn’t a case in which the couple didn’t have other alternatives. This isn’t about the cake. This is about forcing others to conform to your views. So now, Mr. Phillips has said he will just stop making wedding cakes. [iii]

Elaine Huguenin is a professional photographer who refused to do the photography for a same-sex wedding. She said that “she would happily photograph gay customers, but not in a context that seemed to endorse same-sex marriage.” The New Mexico Supreme Court ruled that was not good enough, and that Ms. Huguenin did not have the freedom to make that decision. If she offers her services to the public, then she must serve all the public. [iv]

That decision alone is distressing. Taken to its logical conclusion, that would mean that she would be obligated to photograph people participating in any legal behavior if requested to do so. And please don’t try to argue that courts would never take it that far. They have already gone beyond where we thought they would never go ten years ago. We are sliding down a steeper and ever more slippery slope at an ever increasing speed.

Just this month, the Lexington-Fayette Human Rights Commission announced their decision that Blaine Adamson of Hands On Originals, a T-shirt company, violated the law by refusing to print shirts for the Lexington Gay Pride parade in 2012. Adamson stated that he refused to print the shirts because of the message conveyed on the shirt, not because of the sexual orientation of the customers.

And this is not the only order that Adamson has refused. Of the thirteen orders he has turned down in the past two years, one of them was for a Christian group because he thought the design, which included blood, was too racy.[v] The ruling, which includes the ever-present condition in these sorts of cases that the employees must undergo diversity training, implies that Adamson cannot refuse any business regardless of his convictions concerning the message conveyed.[vi]

So, if the Westboro Baptist Church asked them to print T-shirts saying that all gays should be executed, do you think the LGBT community in Lexington would be supportive of Mr. Adamson’s business for obeying the recent ruling? This isn’t an issue of freedom and equal access for the LGBT community; this is an attempt to impose their views and beliefs on the rest of us. They want to be free to voice their opinion, but it is clear they do not want those opposed to be able to voice their views. That is where this is heading, and as is evident in the most recent cases, it has already arrived.

Cynthia and Robert Gifford, who own Liberty Ridge Farm near Albany, NY, have been fined $10,000 and ordered to pay $1500 each to Jennifer McCarthy and Melissa Erwin after they refused to rent their farm to the couple for a same-sex wedding ceremony. They did offer to let them use the facility for their reception, but obviously that wasn’t good enough. The Giffords host several birthday parties and about a dozen weddings a year, but because of the ruling, have decided to no longer host any wedding ceremonies on their property going forward. The Giffords argued that they live on the premises and as part of the ceremony preparations open up their private residence to the wedding party. The court decided that their privacy and their religious convictions weren’t enough to allow them to choose not to host gay weddings. [vii]The ultimate result of this is a loss of one more wedding venue to couples in the Albany area. It doesn’t mean that gay couples have another place to get married.

There are a growing number of examples of bakers, florists and lodges who have refused their services for same-sex weddings because of their religious convictions. In every case so far, the courts have ruled that these businesses offer their services to the public, and are not exclusively religious, and therefore cannot discriminate based on their personal religious convictions.

I don’t quite understand the reasoning behind all of this. If a company doesn’t want your business, why would you want to force them to take it if you have other options? I can understand the dilemma if they are the only company in an area offering that particular service, but in none of these situations is that the case. If they don’t want to take your money, then go elsewhere. Vote with your pocketbook. And tell your like-minded friends. Instead, the LGBT community is using the club of government to force businesses into (conformity) submission, and in most cases, out of business altogether. And I am not sure that is not the ultimate intent. “If you don’t agree with us, then you are not allowed in this society.” Liberal and tolerant? I don’t think so.

The Threat to Academic Institutions

However, it is apparent that the movement isn’t going to stop there. Earlier this month Gordon College, an evangelical Christian college in Massachusetts, announced that they “will spend the next year studying current campus policies on same-sex behavior.” This is in response to the regional accrediting body, The New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC) discussion at its September meeting concerning “whether Gordon’s prohibition on “homosexual practice” conflicts with its accreditation standards.” Of course Gordon’s Life And Conduct policy also bans any sexual conduct outside of marriage. [viii]

Gordon College is one of the top evangelical academic institutions in the country. However, for any academic institution, regional accreditation determines your viability. Without it, your degrees become nice pieces of paper, but that’s all. The ability of your students to qualify for government loans and grants is taken away if you lose accreditation. In other words, the NEASC is threatening Gordon with its sledgehammer in an apparent effort to get them to remove part of their distinctive Christian heritage. And if they can do this, there is no limit to what they can force you to do if you want to maintain the coveted regional accreditation.

In the article in Christianity Today, one alum is quoted as saying that “The current policy creates a sense of fear for LGBTQ students and is psychologically harmful to those in the community.” I am sorry, but weren’t you aware of the policy before you applied to Gordon? It’s not like they were hiding it. All of those rules are available for anyone to see. Most students apply to specific colleges because of the majors they offer, the campus life available, and the heritage and perspective of the school. There are plenty of educational opportunities for LGBTQ students in which they will be fully able to do whatever they want to do. Why must folks on the left want to impose their views and lifestyles on others with whom they disagree?

Gordon is not telling you not to come if you are gay. They are just saying that you cannot participate in homosexual practice as a member of the Gordon community. And guess what, if you are straight, but not married, you can’t participate in sexual activities as a member of the Gordon community either.

Almost all Christian colleges have some sort of lifestyle guidelines. Gordon is actually a lot more open than most. Some of them are so tight that they make me cringe. But I don’t want to change them; I just don’t want to teach there. I wouldn’t apply for a position there and then complain because of their lifestyle agreement. Students shouldn’t apply to a Christian school, or any school, and once there complain about the very conditions that make that school unique.

Certainly, if a regional accrediting body can cause Gordon College to reexamine their behavioral conduct policy, then all Christian academic institutions are in peril. As I said, Gordon is one of the top evangelical academic institutions in the country. It’s not their academics that are in question here, it’s their religious beliefs. That is chilling.

The Threat to the Pulpit

Even when states were telling private businesses that they could not refuse services for same-sex weddings, the asserted caveat was that this would never impact churches or ministers because those were specifically religious, and of course the first amendment would protect them. I was never convinced that a government, drunk with the power of ever-increasing encroachments on our freedoms, would stop at that obstacle. Their touted “wall of separation” would suddenly become no more than a speed bump. When the left wants to keep religious views out of government, they want a wall (even without the evidence of history and the writings of the founders on their side). However, when they want to exert the power of government, then religion is forced into the closets of one’s personal life and mind. And yes, I did say closet.

The latest, and probably most egregious, example of this are the actions of the City of  Houston, led by openly lesbian Mayor, Annise Parker, which “has  issued subpoenas demanding a group of pastors turn over any sermons dealing with homosexuality, gender identity” or the mayor.[ix] This is all in response to a reaction to a new city ordinance allowing transgendered individuals to use whichever public bathroom facility they wished. Opponents of the new law, including a coalition of over four hundred churches, submitted a petition asking for a public referendum on the ordinance. When the petition was disallowed because of alleged irregularities (in spite of having 50,000 signatures, well over the 17,269 required), a lawsuit was filed pushing for the public referendum.

In response to the lawsuit, the city has now issued those subpoenas for the pastor’s sermons. And the pastors subpoenaed are not even parties to the lawsuit. And it isn’t just sermons. It is all communications with their congregants regarding the new law.

It is apparent that what the city and the Mayor are trying to do here is to intimidate the pastors. They want to portray them as homophobic and as bigots. They want to silence them. Tony Perkins, head of the Family Research Council commented:

This is the moment I wrote about in my book, “God Less America.” I predicted that the government would one day try to silence American pastors. I warned that under the guise of “tolerance and diversity” elected officials would attempt to deconstruct religious liberty.[x]

I don’t know who will end up winning this battle in Houston, but I am sure, whatever the outcome, it will not be the last fight. It is certain that preachers who continue to preach the biblical message that homosexual behavior is a sin will be persecuted, and eventually prosecuted. That is the road we are on.

It is certain that states will require that anyone who is authorized to perform wedding ceremonies cannot refuse to perform same-sex weddings. Recently, when the law barring same-sex weddings in North Carolina was overturned in court, a local magistrate, based on his Christian convictions, refused to perform a same-sex ceremony. Now all magistrates have been told that they must “perform civil marriages for same-sex couples or face suspension or dismissal from their state jobs.” [xi]

How far away from this is it for someone to argue that anyone, including a minister, who performs a wedding ceremony, is acting as an officer of the state?  As I argued earlier today in a Facebook post:

If the state supposedly grants the authority to anyone who performs a marriage ceremony to do so, then cannot the state dictate how you carry out that authority? That will mean that any minister refusing to perform same-sex ceremonies will then lose his/her ability to perform any wedding ceremonies, or be charged with a crime. And anyone wishing to get married legally by the state will have to go to a state approved officiant, or not be legally married in the eyes of the state. At that point, churches and ministers will have to decide whom they serve. Personally, for those who have ever been to a marriage which I have officiated, I never say “by the power vested in me by the state of …..” In my view, marriage is under the authority of God, not the state (Go watch Braveheart.); the state just deals with tax and inheritance issues.[xii]

If you think that can’t happen, then you are not paying attention. Our religious and political freedoms are under assault. Those who are attacking us will not be satisfied until they either shut us up entirely, force us to conform to their beliefs and behaviors, or just drive us underground. I don’t like any of those options.

I will not shut up. I will not change my beliefs. And I am not planning on going anywhere. However, I might start performing religious weddings if it came to that without regard to state issued marriage licenses. (Again, I refer to the movie Braveheart.). And it might be that our educational institutions have to spurn secular accreditation in order to maintain their distinctiveness. But recognize folks, that if it comes to that, we will no longer be living in a republic adhering to the United States Constitution. We will no longer be free. It will be a tyranny of the left. And from where I sit, it doesn’t seem like such a long way off.

We are the proverbial frogs in the pan of water, and the heat has been turned on high. Are we going to just swim around oblivious to our surroundings until we boil to death?

As I wrote this, I certainly had second-thoughts about publishing it. I work in academia. That’s not a community very tolerant of the views I have expressed today.  Will I be stirring up a hornet’s nest which will result in me being the one getting stung? Why not just be quiet, keep my head down, and hope to live out my life in peace. But I decided that if I sit here and say nothing, the way things are going, I will end up living in tyranny because the left is surely not interested in allowing us liberty.

Well, it didn’t take as long as I thought it would. Check out this story in which ordained ministers in Coeur d’Alene are being threatened with legal action if they refuse to perform same-sex weddings. This is being done under the pretense that the ministers operate a wedding chapel that is a for-profit business. Don’t be suckered into that line of reasoning. From the left’s point of view, it doesn’t matter if it’s a for-profit business, or a non-profit church. They will impose their way on us, or drive us out. Again, this is tyranny, not liberty. They are not interested in their freedoms; they are interested in power over us.


[i]  Accessed 10/16/14.

[ii] .  Accessed 10/16/14.

[iii]  Accessed 10/16/14.

[iv]  Accessed 10/16/14.

[v]  Accessed 10/16/14.

[vi]  Accessed 10/16/14.

[vii]  Accessed 10/16/14.

[viii]  Accessed 10/16/14.

[ix]  Accessed 10/16/14.

[x]  Accessed 10/16/14.

[xi]–Gay-Marriage-North-Carolina  Accessed 10/16/14.

[xii]!/jon.c.ham/posts/10152950112136842?notif_t=mention  Accessed 10/16/14.

A Constitutional Republic or an Aristocracy?

When you examine our form of government, you find, as we are taught early on, that we do not have a strict democracy, but a constitutional republic. And in that constitutional republic, the offices and powers of government are supposed to be open to all. But do we really have a government that is “of the people, by the people and for the people?” Or do we have a government that is dominated by an aristocratic elite that functions to keep them as the elite and powerful? I would posit that the latter is the case in our present day America, even more so than it may have been in earlier days when certain classes and groups of people were explicitly kept out of the halls of government.

What would we expect to see if we truly had a government made up of representative citizens who see their job as actually serving their constituents, and what would we expect to see if we have a government made up of an aristocratic elite who see themselves as a special class of citizens?

Let’s take a look at some questions and see where the answers take us.

1.      If we have a truly representative government then the economic status of the members of Congress would reflect the economics of the country.

While one percent of Americans are millionaires, almost half of those in Congress are members of that elite financial class.[i]  This is even close. As of 2011, 47% of the members of Congress were millionaires and their financial status was getting stronger even though the country was going through a financial crisis. Now I am far from decrying a person’s success in a capitalistic economy, but how is it that our supposed representatives’ financial status improves while they are supposed to be serving us while the rest of the country is taking a financial hit.

We don’t have a representative cross-section of America, or even a cross-section of financially above average Americans. What we have is a Congress dominated by a financially elite class of individuals. And this group of individuals increases their wealth while in Congress. And then they have pensions after they leave Congress that ensure that they stay as members of the elite economic class.

That sounds more like an aristocracy to me.

2.      If we have a truly representative government, then we would expect to see a fairly consistent turnover of people within the Congress.

I am fairly certain that this will come as no surprise to anyone, but once you get elected to Congress, you’ve got better than a 90% chance of holding on to your seat.[ii] Your chances of getting defeated are more likely if you happen to represent a district whose lines get changed before an election or if you represent a traditional swing district. Otherwise, once you get to DC, you have a great shot at staying until you retire or die.

Even during the great “Republican Revolution” of 1994, 90% of members of the House who ran retained their seats and 93% of Senators did. In the House, since 1964 the lowest percentage of House members who sought reelection who were successful was 85% in 1970.[iii] The Senate fared a little worse with only 55% retaining their seats in the Reagan Revolution of 1980 but since 1988, the percentages have either been at or above 79%. And let us not forget that only one-third of Senators run in each election, so it’s much easier to impact the percentages in one year. House members run every two years, and it is just staggering to see results like we have. I don’t like much of what I read in the Huffington Post, but I have to agree with Todd Phillips in his article following the last election when he asked how 91% of Congress get reelected when they have a 10% approval rating?[iv] I may not agree with Mr. Phillips suggestions, but I do agree with his warning at the end of the post.

The results of the recent congressional elections should be a red light telling us that our government is not in the control of the people. This is a very dangerous situation. If people are unwilling to do something now, we will surely pay dearly for it in the not-too-distant future.[v]

Having a group of people who are in power and stay in power even when people strongly disapprove of what they are doing doesn’t sound like a representative government. It sounds like a privileged ruling class. It sounds like an aristocracy. Has Congress become a de facto House of Lords?

3.      If we had a government “of the people, by the people and for the people”, then we should expect that all the laws passed by the government would apply to all citizens equally.

Okay, stop laughing. Isn’t this common sense? That was part of the point of John Locke’s Treatises on Civil Government which were the foundations of Jeffersonian democracy. If the governing authorities can make laws that don’t apply to them, then there are no natural constraints on what they will do. They can pass laws that might damage others and not worry about it because those consequences do not impact their lives. That’s what monarchs did. That’s what nobles did. That what aristocrats did.  That’s not what representatives of the people are supposed to do. [vi]

“Let them eat cake.”

[iii] Ibid.

[v] Ibid.

[vi] The latest fiasco in this long line of Congressional exemptions is the so-called Affordable Care Act. (Accessed 9/23/2013) So even when we are told that the law is supposed to apply to them, when they find out what the consequences are, out comes a “ruling” that exempts them from the impact. This time from the Office of Personnel Management. What a shocker.

As a Christian, I am concerned for the poor, and that’s another reason I am voting for Mitt Romney.

As a Christian, heck, just as a human, I don’t enjoy seeing people living in poverty and I would prefer that that would not be the case. I realize that what we call poverty in the United States would not be considered poverty in most parts of the world, even though we do have cases of extreme poverty even here. But that aside, the question is what is the best approach to this issue.

I have good friends who have a strong, vibrant Christian faith and who are fervently on the other side of the political spectrum from me. I have even read Facebook posts, comments, news articles and books that question how anyone could be a Republican, conservative or (gasp!) a Tea Party supporter, and truly be a Christian. Those of us on the political right have been accused of being uncaring, unloving, cold-hearted, and certainly unchristian. We have been told that we want to leave others “out on their own” when we need to be “in this together.”

I would like to briefly discuss my perspective on this issue and why, even though I think we both are concerned for the poor (even though some of my friends on the left would assert that they are much more concerned), that I am compelled to vote for Mitt Romney, because I think his policies will help the poor much more than the policies of Barack Obama.

This is going to be a very brief overview. My plan is to come back to this topic on the blog and go over each point in detail at a later date. However, with the election being tomorrow, I felt a sense of urgency to get this posted.

1. If you want to help people, then keep it relational. Establish relationships between the givers and the receivers. This is why the church and communities were the ways things got done in the past. The givers had a vested interest in helping other people and seeing that these people got going in their lives. The receivers had a vested interest in turning their lives around and acting responsibly (that is not asserting that their need was a result of their own irresponsibility). If you help someone, and they continually act irresponsibly, then at some point, you stop helping because your help is no longer help, it is poison.

Unfortunately, when the government becomes the vehicle to distribute the help that it has taken from the helpers, then there is no relationship. And without relationship and an incentive to take responsibility for one’s life, then what is cultivated is dependency. It is clear that the government’s “war on poverty” of the last fifty years has done exactly that. It has created an underclass in the United States from which it is very difficult to escape. Two generations now raised in that mindset have become accustomed to a lifestyle which is imprisoning them, not liberating them. I do think we need a new time of Jubilee in which we can actually educate, train, and empower people to get out from under the shackles of government subsistence living. And it won’t come from more government handouts. We are in desperate need of a new perspective.

I think it is enlightening to realize that Mitt Romney has donated approximately 30% of his income to charity. Heartless? I don’t think so. “But he gave it to the Mormon Church.” Well I give most of mine to my church, so that they can minister to others too. And by the way… the Mormon church does a great job taking care of their own needy. I think most evangelical churches could take some pointers there.

2. Socialism never has worked and never will. Human nature being what it is, there needs to be a connection between effort and reward/results. It doesn’t matter what you deem the necessary reward, since it doesn’t have to be monetary, but if you disconnect a person’s effort from the rewards/results that come from the effort, then that effort will diminish. That disconnect is exactly what happens in socialism.  That is human nature. We may want to deny it. We may long for the day when it is finally transformed completely, but it is who we are…. (And I think it is creational, not just a post-fall aspect for you theologians out there.)

I have done the experiment in my classes and even my students, who overwhelmingly would self-identify as democrats, rebel at the idea of sharing their points and grades. The achievers want the grades they have earned and almost all of the students recognize that everyone’s efforts would eventually disappear if that individual motivation wasn’t there. Now, you can call it what you will, but when you implement the economic policies that Barack Obama has advocated in which the state takes over more and more of the economy,  it is socialism.

3. The year of Jubilee in the Old Testament was not a forerunner of socialism; it was a forerunner of equal opportunity. In the year of Jubilee, one of the things that was supposed to happen was that the land was to be returned to the original owners. Recognize that this was an agrarian society. Without land at this time, then there was no way to freely survive and accumulate wealth. So returning the land to the original owners meant that, every fifty years, families who had lost their property, for whatever reasons, were able to get a fresh start at economic prosperity. But also recognize that the wealth that someone had accumulated on that property was not forfeited. You returned the land, debts were cancelled, but you didn’t redistribute the wealth. People were to receive a fresh opportunity, not someone else’s wealth. Interesting that this was to happen every fifty years. Apparently it was to be expected that people would always fall into poverty throughout time.

4. There is human dignity in work. People enjoy the significance of achievement. Yes, there something special about gifts and grace, especially the amazing grace of salvation, however, when it comes to our life on this planet, if nothing we do makes any difference, then where is our worth? (Yes, we have intrinsic value but that is not the point here.) Even kids, when everyone gets a ribbon begin to realize that the ribbon is meaningless. If we really want to help people, especially poor people, then let’s help them find meaningful, and gainful employment. This is where I strongly believe that Mitt Romney’s experience and platform will be much better than Barack Obama’s. We cannot continue with an economy in which, when we include those who have just given up looking for work, over 14% of the population is unemployed.

5. The government is the least efficient way to get most anything done. Give me an example of government doing something efficiently. (That doesn’t mean that government doesn’t do some things well, and isn’t necessary to carry out some tasks like national defense, however, even there it is apparent that wasteful spending is the normal operating mode.) What we have in government programs is endless bureaucracies and jobs that aren’t necessary for the tasks at hand and wasteful spending because there is no incentive to be frugal. This point should be self-evident.

6. In Medieval Europe, the government and the economic system was merged into something called feudalism. The government (royalty) controlled everything and owned everything. There was no political freedom for those outside the ruling elite, and there was no economic freedom either. If we continue down the road we are presently on, that is where we regress to. When economic and financial institutions and mechanisms are tied into the government, then the powers that be have total control over the lives of the citizenry. If you are going to be free politically, you must be free economically. (And this includes crony capitalism from either side of the aisle. You can’t have businesses and politicians lining each other’s pockets.) The more dependent people are on the government, the more power over their lives they have relinquished to the government. The more power government has, the less freedom the people have. If we truly care about people, and want to give them every chance to improve their lives economically, then we must choose to give them freedom from an economic system dominated by governmental controls. If we want to help people out of poverty, then a free and fair market system is the best way to go. History has shown this to be the case. [i]

7. As a Christian, I am commanded to love others… to give cheerfully… to help my neighbor. And you know what, I want to do all that… and do, even in my own failing ways. But where in scripture does it say that the government’s job is to do that? Even in the Old Testament it doesn’t say that the government was to forcefully collect tithes and offerings. The people were supposed to donate that money as recognition that all things were a gift of God and to help those who were disenfranchised. I think we still need to do all of that. However, I see a real difference between the government forcefully taking away money through taxation and then doing a mediocre job (at best) of helping people, and people voluntarily giving of their worldly goods to help their neighbors. [ii]

8. Wealth itself is not condemned in Scripture, but the love of it. Abraham was rich. Jacob was rich. Joseph was rich. David, Solomon… and on and on.  The goal of Scriptural teaching is not to take away all differences in possessions or wealth. In fact, when Jacob’s father-in-law tried to cheat him out of the wealth generated by his work, God blessed Jacob with even more! The point is what you do with it… and how you got it. God is concerned that we love justice (including how we got our possessions), show mercy (help the disadvantaged and disenfranchised) and walk humbly with our God (including knowing that all we are and have belong to Him and come from Him.) Micah 6:8

As I said at the top, this was going to be a quick, abbreviated overview of some economic perspectives that I believe are crucial in this election. I am convinced that Mitt Romney will lead us in the direction that is more Biblically sound economically and that is another reason I am voting for him. I want fewer poor people. I believe Mitt Romney does too.

If nothing else, I hope this has given you something to chew on.

Thanks…. Remember regardless of what happens on November 6, 2012, God is still on the throne!  Our goal is His will to be done on earth

[i] But isn’t capitalism dangerous? Yes, like any system it can be abused, and that is why you need a limited government to protect our God given rights. Some regulations are necessary. No one that I know of supports the absence of regulations. But that is not the point of this post. When you compare the options, there is more possibility of abuse in a socialistic state, or a state run economy than in a free market economy. When government officials are also in control of the economy, in essence having absolute power, the potential for abuse, as history has shown, is mind boggling.

[ii] I also find it extremely interesting that it is usually those on the left that are so adamant about government programs for the poor, but it is those on the right who overwhelmingly give more to charities.  (


“Revolution” and Human Nature

I have been watching the new television series Revolution whose storyline is the situation in the former United States after a worldwide loss of all power. At this point we don’t know exactly why the power went out, but slowly, thanks to flashbacks, we are learning about what happened in the weeks and years following this event.

The thing that keeps smacking me in the face is the prevalent belief about human nature that has to be the foundation for the series. The premise is that since the government failed, that there was no real police or military protection, then chaos ensued and people immediately became lawless. In other words the idea is that without a government to keep things in order, people will resort to a “kill or be killed mentality.”

From what we have seen so far in the series, in order to stop that annihilation, some individuals stepped in and imposed a strict, totalitarian, military order, and of course, they have convinced themselves that they did it for the good of the people. As the argument goes, without us, everyone would have died. So if we have to sacrifice a few for the many, then it is justified.

What does that say about human nature? I would encourage you to pick up a copy of Thomas Hobbes’ Leviathan. The writers of Revolution appear to subscribe to his beliefs about humanity. In Leviathan, Hobbes laid out his political philosophy based on the belief that humans, by nature, are barbarian egoist. In other words we are violent and selfish and without government are in a constant state of war with each other. It is simply kill or be killed. And in this state of nature, culture and society, commerce and business, cannot exist. Therefore, in order to keep from the annihilation of the human race, governments come into being out of enlightened self-interest.

From that perspective, the purpose of government is to keep control of the people, to keep order. Recognize that Hobbes believed that without government people did not have rights, or property, nor did any ethics exist. Nothing was inherently right or wrong.  Rights come only from the government. Thus, there is really no such thing as a government infringing on someone’s rights in an assertion of its power. Ultimately, whatever a government has to do to keep control is right, because the only alternative is to revert back to chaos. And in chaos, we all face certain death.

All of that is based on the foundational belief about human nature. (As well as the rejection of a worldview that had a loving, creative God who had established an order in the first place.) Is that really who we are? Are we really barbarian egoists who only have social, cultural and economic relationships because of government controls? If that’s the case, then the logical conclusion is the more government the better and the stronger the government the better.  And that’s what the military rulers in Revolution seem to assert. “We are here because without us, you would all kill each other. You are barbarian egoists.”

But that is a crucial question. What do you believe about human nature? Your belief about human nature is an essential premise for your view of the purpose and role of government. As things go forward in the TV series, I anticipate seeing more and more of a competition between conflicting views on human nature and the resulting political philosophies.