Republic of Heaven
Bruce Casino wrote an excellent article called Thoughts on Unification Theology and Democracy: The Republic of Heaven on Earth? He began by quoting Rev.Moon: "True Democracy is the way to win over dictatorship and personality cults. We find in Abraham's Lincoln's speech the eternal truth 'a government of the people, by the people, and for the people shall not perish from the earth.' The democratization of our nation is, therefore, the topmost priority." ("Citizen's Federation for the Unification of the Fatherland: Founder's Address" May 15, 1987)
In The Anatomy of Power John Kenneth Galbraith writes that he has "been involved with the subject of power ... for some forty years." His book covers "economic, political, military, and religious power and the power attributed to the press, television, and public opinion." In his chapter on religious power he says Rev. Moon has great power: "The power of personality is still present in certain contemporary religious leaders -- in the United States the Reverend Billy Graham, the Reverend Jerry Falwell, the Reverend Oral Roberts, the Reverend Sun Myung Moon." He writes that though there are a few powerful religious leaders like the ones he mentioned society does not give churches as much power as they had in the past. I agree. Power has shifted toward the secular.
Galbraith writes, "Few words are used so frequently with so little seeming need to reflect on their meaning as power, and so it has been for all the ages. In association with kingship and glory it was included in the ultimate scriptural accolade to the Supreme Being; millions still offer it every day. Bertrand Russell was led to the thought that power, along with glory, remains the highest aspiration and the greatest reward of humankind." Russell wrote Power: A New Social Analysis. He said, "Of the infinite desires of man, the chief are the desires for power and glory." Russell was not religious but we are and when you think of it isn't our number one goal to see God and True Parents have power and glory instead of Satan and his ideology? We want goodness to win. We want the good guys to have more power than the bad guys.
Galbraith continues, "Not many get through a conversation without a reference to power. Presidents or prime ministers are said to have it or to lack it in the requisite. Corporations and trade unions are said to be powerful. Newspaper publishers...Reverend Jerry Falwell"...etc. are all said to have power. He comments on the history of men having power over women: "male power and female submission have relied on the belief since ancient times that such submission is the natural order of things. Men might love, honor, and cherish; it was for long accepted that women should love, honor, and obey." He says the women's movement has gained power to confront this thinking. He says that power can be for good or bad: "There can be suffering, indignity, and unhappiness from the exercise of power. There can, as well, be suffering, indignity, and unhappiness from the absence of its exercise."
Power, money and knowledge
Father often says people think power, money and knowledge are the most precious things, but love, life and ideal are more important. Even so, Father wants us to have power, money and knowledge. This chapter is about power and this word will come up many times. Father wants us to have God centered power. He wants us to have money and knowledge, too. But, it too, must be God centered. A popular motivational speaker, Anthony Robbins, has a book called Unlimited Power. He explains that he does not mean negative power like Hitler had, but the positive power to take massive action to fulfill your dreams. As the proverb goes," He who gains victory over other men is strong; but he who gains victory over himself is all powerful." Father has given us the ultimate ideal and we need to have the power to persuade this world by our words and deeds to join us. One of the biggest obstacles to this is people's thinking that government should have more power than churches, that secular is more powerful than religious. Satan has tricked practically everyone into believing that the government is the messiah. I hope to convince you it is not. Governments have tortured and imprisoned Father -- even in America. The Founding Fathers wanted to diffuse power to the community. Each man was to wield his power in the home and in politics with discipline. Today Presidents have more influence than religious leaders and look at the mess they have made of their families and the country. The Third Blessing is about living in an ideal world. Just as we need a written, detailed blueprint to build a house, we need a written, detailed constitution and laws to build a beautiful, harmonious world. The UC has some powerful new ideas to lift this world to the Completed Testament Stage. The main one being that the True Parents have completed their mission of building the first True Family. But the UC does not have a monopoly on truth. God has revealed some of His truth through others.
The key to success is leadership. Leadership means vision as discussed in all books on leadership such as Warren Bennis in Leaders: The Strategies For Taking Charge and Burt Nanus in Visionary Leadership. A few other famous writers on leadership are James McGregor Burns, John Gardiner, and Ken Blanchard. There are no colleges that give a major in Leadership. I hope the University of Bridgeport will create one. God and True Parents want UC brothers to be greater leaders than the Founding Fathers. UC brother's 5% responsibility is to give inspiring vision and goals and effective strategy to accomplish those goals. Father has done all one can do. He wants us to be small messiahs. We are supposed to be the leading business, political, academic and social leaders. Leaders have power. God wants UC brothers to be the most powerful people on earth. God is not all powerful on this earth. Satan rules. UC brothers must take Satan's power away. The way to do this is to expose him. It is the UC's prime mission to teach the Divine Principle -- the most powerful ideology in the world -- an ideology that has the power to unite this world as one family.
Currents debates the issue
Father rarely comments on all the political issues hotly debated in Congress and at people's dinner tables. Father and the Divine Principle book focus on the Bible. The Bible says very little about politics and economics. Father is giving us that job. Dan Fefferman in an issue in Currents (1990) writes that the UC has focused so much on anti-Communist work that it neglected to address other issues. He writes, "in the midst of our anti-Communist efforts, we have not yet taken the time to carefully define our own positions on domestic policy issues .... when we look around ourselves now, and we ask 'What do we Unificationists believe about the issues?' -- abortion, affirmative action, the budget, the courts, deficit spending, drugs, education, the environment, foreign aid, the military, monetary policy, pornography, prayer in schools, taxes, trade policy, welfare -- we find our social vision still somewhat unclarified .... it is essential that we begin to define our positions on the entire range of social concerns which affect this country and the world if we are to retain the vital prophetic character of Unificationism as a religious and social movement .... If we do not [have] a clear understanding of where we as a movement stand on the issues, we will be led by practically anyone with vision and commitment on his or her own issues of most intimate concern .... [there is an] urgency for the movement to begin taking the 'bull by the horns' in terms of the self-definition of Unificationist social theory. In the spirit of what Unificationists call the 'Children's Course' it is up to us, ourselves, to accomplish this work. We cannot afford to let others do it for us."
When people learn that the messiah is on earth they need to have clear answers and clear direction. The value of patriarchy is one of the major ones. There are many minor questions that need to be answered too. Many people are focused on them. For example, millions of people are obsessed with vegetarianism. We can't just say that Father goes hunting and fishing and show them a picture of Father and Mother holding a shotgun in one hand and a goose in the other. They need a detailed written statement that goes into the arguments that dedicated vegetarians read in the magazine Vegetarian Times.
The UC needs to answer such questions people have about capital punishment. I am against it because Jesus and other innocent people have been killed this way. Some people are fanatics about nudist camps. We have to explain how God is for modesty. Some people have questions about alcohol. We need a detailed written explanation. Seventh Day Adventists are fanatics about the day Saturday. Is it all right to use chemicals such as pesticides on plants? Do pets go to heaven? If we don't know we should at least say so. Our values and answers should be written in every language and every member thinks the same. Are there people on other planets? Carl Sagan pushes this point in his series of videos called Cosmos. I heard from a person who attended the first seminary class at Barrytown who said someone asked Father that question and he said, "We're it." Which came first -- the chicken or the egg? Someone once told me that he heard from someone who heard from someone else (telephone game?) that Father said the chicken came first. How many elders have heard Father answer these kinds of questions and haven't written them down? Is long hair, mustaches and earrings wrong for men? Is it wrong to swear? Do we spank our children? Father seems to say it is alright. But how do we do it? With our hand only? At what age do we stop? Do we use a belt? What words and tone do we use? John Roseman has a whole book on this hot topic. What are the guidelines for punishment in our schools? What about punishment in general? What do we do with people who do wrong?
One of the most heated debates today is the abortion issue. Bruce Casino is correct when he wrote in the Spring issue of Currents in an article called"Suggestions on Unificationist Social Policy": "Unificationists must reject the radical pro-life view held by many conservatives, that the law should prohibit all abortion since abortion is the murder of a human being." He goes on to explain how we believe that life begins with the first breath. Conservatives are not right about everything and on this issue they should not make abortions illegal. This does not mean that abortion is good. It just means that it should not be against the law.
Affirmative action is another hotly debated issue. It slows down the process of ending racism. We must change this world through peaceful persuasion, not government force. The twentieth century has turned away from our Founding Fathers who believed in freedom. When anyone sees a problem in this century they think"There oughta be a law." People should have the freedom to be bigots. If someone wants to discriminate against blacks and place a sign in their window saying"no niggers allowed" they should have that right. Black people have the same right to put in their windows"no honkies allowed." Anti-Unification Church groups have the right to exist and carry signs proclaiming their hatred of Rev. Moon. The UC has the right to carry signs in front of Playboy Magazine's offices in Chicago proclaiming they hate Hugh Hefner (although I think this it is ridiculous when they do). Neither so-called anti-cultists or Unificationists have the right to use force on those they feel are wrong such as the low-lifes that resort to deprogramming. It is sad to hear some anti-abortionists defend those who kill people who work at abortion clinics. Because we believe in government force, we have become a violent nation. We should never use force to make people do what we think is right. The mayor of your city, the governor of your state, the president of the United States and deprogrammers are wrong to think they have the right to force people to live their values.
Charles Murray wrote an article called "Affirmative Racism" in The New Republic (12-31-84). He says, "There is no such thing as good racial discrimination .... A new racism ... is emerging to take its place alongside the old. It grows out of the preferential treatment for blacks..." He says it is insulting to blacks: "The most obvious consequence of preferential treatment is that every black professional, no matter how able, is tainted. Every black who is hired by a white-run organization that hires blacks preferentially has to put up with the knowledge that many of his co-workers believe he was hired because of his race." Murray goes on to explain how many blacks have been hurt by this. He says, "...the new racism links up with the old. The old racism has always openly held that blacks are permanently less competent than whites. The new racism tacitly accepts that, in the course of overcoming the legacy of the old racism, blacks are temporarily less competent than whites. It is an extremely fine distinction. As time goes on, fine distinctions tend to be lost. Preferential treatment is providing persuasive evidence for the old racists."
Murray is a white man. Let's listen to a black man and one of the wisest men I have ever read, Walter Williams. On this topic, he said these words in an article called "Black 'Leaders' Tell Only Part of the Story" (Human Events 1/10/81), "Somebody should tell the emperor that he has no clothes on. For years now, black 'leaders' have been pretending that all the problems of black people can be attributed to white racism. Libraries, bookshelves and newspaper offices are crammed with tomes explaining what black people are, what they think, why they have problems, and what government can do to lead them out of the wilderness. Much of this material is now considered sacred. To question it -- or worse, to criticize it -- leaves one open to harsh attack. If he is lucky, the critic may be called an insensitive clod, or perhaps a political reactionary. If he's less fortunate, he'll be called a racist, or in the case of a black, an Uncle Tom."
"Vernon Jordan, president of the National Urban League, has been quoted as equating blacks with the boat people. After paying their dues to American society for all these years, he said, they are no better off." Williams says someone should ask "Mr. Jordan how such a characterization jibes with income statistics. The average black family outside the South which has both husband and wife working earns about the same as a young white family." He goes on with more statistics that I will skip. One of his arguments goes like this: "What about black leaders who protest that blacks are being victimized and brutalized by police? This statement, put in its proper perspective, borders on the insane. I am not about to pretend that no acts of brutality are ever committed by the police. But most of the violence committed in the black community cannot be blamed on either the police or on white people. If you don't believe me, just go to the Bronx or to Harlem or to North Philadelphia and ask black people, huddled in their homes at night in fear, whom they fear. I doubt whether they will say police authorities or white people."
"Already I can hear some self-appointed expert on crime in the black community saying, 'Perhaps -- but it is racism in the larger society that is responsible for blacks turning on blacks.' Nonsense. When I was a kid growing up in the 1940s, on hot nights black people would often sleep on rooftops, fire escapes and doorsteps to escape the oven-like condition of their apartments. I'm sure if a black person did that today, his marbles would be counted. Surely there was more racial discrimination in the 1940s, yet black people had greater safety in their persons and property." He goes on to give his solutions to crime. Later he writes, "Benjamin Hooks, chairman of the NAACP, recently lamented the fact that whites in America no longer feel guilty about past treatment of blacks."
"I've been wanting for years to give whites 'reparation certificates' for both their own grievances and those of their forebears against my people. Maybe then, white people could stop feeling guilty and acting like fools and start treating black people just like they treat white people. Because if they didn't feel guilty, they wouldn't approve the teaching of 'black English' in some of our schools .... Guilt by many whites has led them to support programs and many forms of behavior that they would not tolerate if displayed by whites. This, I believe, is one of the most insidious forms of racism. I urge: Be brave. If a black does a job that's inferior or makes statements that ignore the facts, hold him accountable. If he does a job that's superb or speaks insightfully, tell him so. All the evidence that I have shows that black people are strong and they can take it -- whatever criticism or commendation that you have to give."
A black man, William Hough, wrote in the Washington Times an article called "On Being Black in America" (August 14, 1984) saying, "there is no other ethnic group in America that seems more prejudiced than us blacks. And it is virtually destroying us as a race .... we wonder why foreign blacks who come to these shores do well. We are quick to criticize them and call them Uncle Toms because they work so cheaply. Yet within five years these foreign blacks often are well on their way to realizing their dreams. We black Americans must understand that there is no short cut to success. We, like everyone else, must take the regular route." I can't believe that Father is for quotas instead of merit. Who isn't a minority and victim? A theme in this book is that libertarian thought on domestic issues is more in line with headwing instead of the left or the right and that the right is usually more correct than the left. The left talks about heart, caring and love a lot but the result is a road paved to hell. Love must be guided by truth. Liberals like Johnson, Kennedy, Carter and Clinton are a disaster. We must see the heart behind what appears to be cold and callous. Father often talks about how love is not always sweet. Sometimes it is stern.
Thomas Szasz says in The Untamed Tongue, "Formerly, men wanted to do a good job; from that desire arose craftsmanship. Today, they want a good job; from that desire arise unions and affirmative action programs."
Paved With Good Intentions
An excellent book on affirmative action is Paved With Good Intentions: the failure of race relations in contemporary America by Jared Taylor. I'm going to pick a few passages to help illustrate how intellectually bankrupt affirmative action is. Taylor writes that Thomas Sowell "has shown that in 1969, while American-born blacks were making only 62 percent of the average income for all Americans, blacks from the West Indies made 94 percent. Second-generation immigrants from the West Indies made 15 percent more than the average American." He paraphrased this from Sowell's book, The Economics and Politics of Race. Thomas Sowell is one of my favorite authors. He also happens to be black.
Taylor goes on: "Although they are only 10 percent of the city's black population, foreign-born blacks -- mostly from the West Indies -- own half of the black-owned businesses in New York City. Their unemployment rate is lower than the national average, and many times lower than that of American-born blacks. West Indian blacks look no different from American blacks; white racists are not likely suddenly to set aside their prejudices when they meet one."
"For nearly twenty years, young blacks who manage to stay married have had family incomes almost identical to those of young white couples. Until recently, the only exception had been the South, but even there the difference has vanished. Now, in families where both parents are college-educated and both work, black families make more money than white families. This is true in all parts of the United States and for families of all ages."
Taylor writes at length how affirmative action has been a failure. He writes, "Some blacks who were marginally employable may have gotten jobs because of affirmative action, but others have been hurt by it. This is because affirmative action has made it very hard to fire minorities. The same guidelines that make bosses explain in detail any failure to hire a minority make them explain in equal detail why they fired one. Furthermore, blacks who are fired might sue their bosses for racism. This means that a company will be afraid to take a chance on hiring a doubtful black in the hope that he might work out. Employers have bid up the wages for smart, hardworking, sure-bet blacks, but they may be more hesitant than ever to risk hiring the marginal cases that affirmative action is presumably supposed to help."
"Some of the most powerful critics of affirmative action are thoughtful blacks. Thomas Sowell says this: 'While doing little or nothing to advance the position of minorities and females, it creates the impression that hard-won achievements of these groups are conferred benefits. Especially in the case of blacks, this means perpetuating racism instead of allowing it to die a natural death ....' Racism can hardly die a natural death when the policies that are supposed to end it are explicitly racial."
Taylor writes, "Another black, Shelby Steele, argues that affirmative action encourages blacks to invest in their status as victims, because it is as victims that they reap the benefits of race-based preferences. Power comes from portraying oneself as 'oppressed,' not from work or achievement. 'When power itself grows out of suffering,' he writes, 'blacks are encouraged to expand the boundaries of what qualifies as racial oppression, a situation that can lead us to paint our victimization in vivid colors even as we receive the benefits of preference.' (from 'A Negative Vote on Affirmative Action,' The New York Times Magazine (May 13,1990). "Of course, this is heresy to mainstream 'civil rights' leaders whose understanding of the word 'equality' is different from that of the rest of us. Benjamin Hooks, former head of the NAACP, calls people like Mr. Sowell and Mr. Steele ' a new breed of Uncle Tom.' He adds that they are 'some of the biggest liars the world ever saw.'"
"Unlike such men as Mr. Hooks, who claim to speak in their names, most blacks understand perfectly well that reverse racism is still racism. According to one national survey, while 77 percent of black leaders favored special treatment in jobs and college admissions, 77 percent of all blacks were against it .... A tiny handful of fair-minded minorities has rejected affirmative action, even to their own hurt. When Shelby Steele was an English professor at San Jose State University, he decided not to apply for any more minority research grants. He wanted to make it on his own. Kirk Dunham, president of the Denver Black Police Officers Association, is incensed that blacks need not score as high as whites on examinations to be promoted. All questions of fairness aside, he fears for his life if he is made to serve with incompetent officers. Freddie Hernandez, a Hispanic fire fighter in Miami, turned down an affirmative action promotion to lieutenant and spent three extra years working to get the job on pure ability. 'I will stick to merit,' he says." There are more examples, but I have to stop somewhere. There is no dignity in affirmative action.
Taylor writes how the words "civil rights" are misused. Liberal socialists do this all the time. He writes, "To call the forcible redistribution of benefits along racial lines 'civil rights' is a cruel mockery of the term for which so many worked hard. The real civil rights struggle led to decisive victory in 1964. As one black puts it, "[its] over -- for the same reason that World War II is over: we won it.' Now what pass for civil rights are what cynics call 'snivel rights.' Martin Luther King once said: 'I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.' For one brief, glorious moment, it seemed that Dr. King's dream would come true."
"Someday the entire edifice of race-based preferences will be torn down. On that day, someone will cite Plessy v. Ferguson, the 1896 U.S. Supreme Court ruling that first established the concept of separate but equal. In a dissent, Justin Harlan wrote:"In respect of civil rights, common to all citizens, the Constitution of the United States does not, I think, permit any public authority to know the race of those entitled to be protected in the enjoyment of such rights .... Our constitution is color-blind, and neither knows nor tolerates classes among citizens."
Taylor blasts both black and white. He says, "The black leaders of this generation have much to answer for. They have perpetuated the myth that salvation comes only from whites. They have made careers out of shaking down a guilt-ridden society and dispensing the booty as patronage. In Thomas Sowell's words, these men 'whose own employment and visibility depend upon maintaining an adequate flow of injustices ...." (from Sowell's book, Civil Rights: Rhetoric or Reality?). Their very livelihoods depend on finding enough white wickedness to denounce."
"Many whites are just as blameworthy. Their minds are trapped in the language of the past. They thunder against the faintest trace of white racism while they ignore the blatant racial excesses of blacks. They have convinced themselves that blacks cannot get ahead without handouts and special treatment. By exempting blacks from individual responsibility, they treat them as vassals. Somehow they have tricked themselves into thinking that this is noble and compassionate rather than degrading."
"The greatest horror of this largely well-intentioned folly is the terrible damage it has done to the very people it was meant to serve. Blacks were freed from slavery over 125 years ago. But the chains that fell from their bodies will never fall from their minds as long as they believe that their destiny lies not in their own hands but in the hands of whites. No people that does not believe itself to be free can ever be free. By telling them that they are not free, America has done blacks a monumental, a criminal disservice. A mind in shackles is as tragic as a body in chains."
This is the kind of truth that takes your breath away. It's breathtaking to hear black men who have the guts to preach black self-reliance such as "Joe Clark, the black high-school principal who won notoriety by disciplining his students with bullhorn and baseball bat [who] put it this way: 'The white liberal philosophy cheats them by making allowances for their deviant behavior, as though normal behavior patterns were alien to them. It fosters a concept of indolence that keeps them on welfare, keeps them emotionally, academically, and economically disenfranchised. It's the antithesis of what this country is about: The door to opportunity is open to all. But you have to be willing to work hard." I could give many trenchant quotes like this from such great black men as newspaper columnist William Raspberry, Shelby Steele, Walter Williams and Thomas Sowell. They are not leaders of black organizations or politicians, but "all have been denounced by black leaders and politicians because what they say cuts straight to the heart of the matter." One black man called the monopoly of affirmative-action views of America "intellectual fascism."
Taylor in Paved With Good Intentions says, "If the conventional view among blacks verges on 'intellectual fascism,' its effect is perhaps even stronger among whites. Is there even one prominent white person in the entire country who calls consistently for black self-reliance?...Whites who do not speak out on black/white relations must mouth the old, patronizing, guilt-ridden lines about white wrongdoing."
Government welfare hurts people
Taylor says visitors come to America and can't believe the "rising tide of horror" and "squalor and barbarity of America's cities." They must think that America is vicious to blacks. But it hasn't been. "Since the 1960s, the United States has poured a staggering amount of money into education, housing, welfare, Medicaid, and uplift programs of every kind. Government now spends $240 billion a year to fight poverty, and despite the widespread notion that spending was curtailed during Republican administrations, it has actually gone up steadily, at a rate that would have astonished the architects of the Great Society."
"As the economist Walter Williams has pointed out, with all the money spent on poverty since the 1960s, the government could have bought every company on the Fortune 500 list and nearly all farmland in America. What do we have to show for three decades and $2.5 trillion worth of war on poverty? The truth is that these programs have not worked. The truth that America refuses to see is that these programs have made things worse." He goes on to dissect the favorite of all programs Head Start and shows how that has been a total failure too. The truth hurts. The truth is hard to see.
Korean greengrocers make it in the ghetto
In The Dream and the Nightmare: the sixties' legacy to the underclass, Myron Magnet writes how liberals have crushed the value of self-reliance in America. He explains that it is the internal, not the external,"culture rather than economics is what fundamentally makes people underclass ....That is the lesson of Korean economic success in ghetto neighborhoods. No opportunity? Then why do Korean greengrocers flourish in Harlem and Bedford-Stuyvesant, where no such business has flourished for years? Why do newly opened Korean-owned liquor stores prosper in the Los Angeles ghettos? It doesn't take arcane skills to run a vegetable stand, only hard work, long hours, determination, rudimentary entrepreneurialism, and family cooperation. These are skills that you learn from home and community; they are skills that are nothing but the reflection of cultural values."
"What limits economic opportunity for the underclass above all is the lack of such skills -- skills like being able to show up on time dependably, to be conscientious and have manners, to treat customers well enough so they'll come back, to stick to something unpleasant, arduous, to attend to details." All lovers of government are naive to believe that government can teach these values. No matter how hard government tries, it throws a wrench into the machinery of the marketplace and into the efforts of institutions like the family and church to instill these values. Government can only create impersonal bureaucracies that leave out God's values. Government focuses on money and economics, not true values. Myron Magnet explains that problems are cultural, not economic. When liberals use government force to regulate people they only depress people and make them dependent and lazy. He says,"You couldn't make the lesson more luminously clear if you inscribed it in big letters upon every Korean vegetable stand: in today's America, cultural values make economic opportunities."
"Film director Spike Lee ruminates upon that lesson in Do the Right Thing, in which a Korean greengrocery in the heart of an underclass neighborhood is a sphinxlike mystery, the subject of endless puzzlement and speculation. Maybe the greengrocers succeed because the Reverend Sun Myung Moon secretly bankrolls them, one nonworking ghetto dweller theorizes, voicing a view widely held in such neighborhoods. The grain of truth behind this zany hypothesis is that Korean greengrocers do have a mechanism -- a rotating credit association called the gae -- for raising capital without collateral from friends or relatives. The twenty or thirty members of such a club each contribute three hundred or five hundred dollars or more to a monthly pot, and every month the total pot is loaned to a different member, beginning with the neediest. So that makes enough to pay a landlord his rent and to buy and stock the shelves and refrigerated cases."
What would the UC be like if brothers had that many close friends and they all helped each other? There is strength in numbers. American movies of the old West show Indian tribes combining with the example of some warrior easily breaking a spear over his leg, but unable to do it with two spears. Power comes from unity. Weakness and vulnerability to Satan comes from being alone. Government can never teach people to help each other. Only the church can do this. Father taught this when Senator Orin Hatch held a sub-committee meeting for him just before Father went to prison. Father boldly proclaimed that government is object and religion is subject.
Magnet continues saying,""But capital isn't what makes the difference -- and in fact enterprising black or Hispanic ghetto dwellers aren't' barred from access to capital, since they are eligible for start-up loans from an array of state-run programs or from the Small Business Administration's direct loan and loan guarantee programs. Culture, not capital, is the key ingredient in Korean business success in the ghettos. Indeed the gae itself, a traditional way of organizing people for mutual self-help, is nothing but a manifestation of culture. The same can be said of the sense of cooperation, loyalty, and obligation that makes such an institution of mutual trust viable. It can be said yet again of the tradition of close-knit families whose members willingly defer gratification, toil at menial jobs, and save fervidly to raise the monthly payments required for membership in a gae. No external bar prevents members of the underclass from doing the same thing. The economic opportunity that Koreans have taken in the ghetto was there for anyone to take, as Spike Lee's movie ruefully concludes."
"But by no means all blacks who have commented publicly on this subject have agreed with Lee. Resentment of Asian economic success in underclass neighborhoods runs high, as evidenced by the widespread destruction of Korean-owned businesses in the 1992 Los Angeles riots and by ugly boycotts and threats of boycott across the nation. The public statement of a black local legislator representing Washington's Anacostia ghetto typifies the tone:"The day of the Asian community occupying or getting the majority of business in a black neighborhood is over .... We are not going to burn down our community...We are going to use our clout in city hall."
"The anger is understandable as well as deplorable: Asian business success in urban ghettos tears away the myth that the underclass is imprisoned in its penurious, pathological idleness by an utter absence of economic opportunity. Asian entrepreneurs have uncovered robust economic opportunity and decent lives right in the blighted and supposedly barren heart of the ghettos. Instead of allowing the underclass the solace of seeing themselves as victims, their fate not their own responsibility but forced upon them, Asian success contains an implicit reproach: What's the matter with the underclass that they couldn't do what immigrant Asians, starting at the bottom and scarcely able to speak English, have so swiftly accomplished? The answer is to be found in underclass culture -- not, as many others claim with increasing hollowness, in the economy."
Magnet says liberals continually"go on searching for the perfect job-training program, the labor camps for underclass men that will somehow bring them into the mainstream economy by taking them out to the country, the magical adjustment of the welfare system, the condom giveaway program in the schools -- the ideal program, so fine-tuned that it will at last succeed where all the others have failed."
A few fundamental ideas
Magnet says as I say so often in this book: we need to return to basic truths thrown out by this century:"For the breakdown of the poor to be healed and the moral confusion of the Haves to be dispelled, we need above all to repair the damage that has been done to the beliefs and values that have made America remarkable and that for two centuries have successfully transformed huddled masses of the poor into free and prosperous citizens. The soul of American society isn't an ancient dynasty, or racial homogeneity, or immemorial rootedness in an ancestral fatherland, or welfare paternalism, but an allegiance to a few fundamental ideas. The principles on which our society was built must once again inform our public life, from social policy to school curricula: that everyone is responsible for his or her actions; that we believe in freedom under the rule of law, and that we enforce the law scrupulously in all neighborhoods; that the public, communal life is a boon, not an oppression; that everyone has equal rights, and rights belong to individuals, not groups; that we are free to shape our future."
Federal aid weakens character
Grover Cleveland was one of America's presidents in the late 1800s. Years ago he was rightly judged to be one of our greatest presidents. Lately he is judged as being too reactionary because those in academia are now basically liberal. Cleveland made a statement that is often quoted. Usually it is only a sentence about the role of government. I want to give a few more sentences after his famous one. The passage is from a veto message of 1887 in which he denounces a congressional act that would have provided free seed to drought-stricken farmers in Texas. It is often cited as one historian explains"as an illustration of his callous and blind conservatism. It is better read as the plea of a troubled president anxious to sustain the traditions and values of an idealized past." I do not think Cleveland had an"idealized" view of the past. He correctly saw the value of limited government as Jefferson did that had served America well. Cleveland wrote,"...the lesson should be constantly enforced that though the people support the Government, Government should not support the people .... Federal aid, in such cases, encourages the expectations 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 strengthen the bond of a common brotherhood."
An historian wrote,"Nine years later, when vetoing a rivers-and-harbors appropriations bill, Cleveland wrote in almost identical terms as he warned against 'a vicious paternalism' that would encourage the belief that popular attachment to the government should 'rest upon the hope and expectation of direct and especial favors.' The mission of the national government was not the distribution of favors but 'the enforcement of exact justice and equality.'"
"Cleveland, together with a majority of his compatriots, pledged an automatic allegiance to the free marketplace. He would have dismissed the modern concept of national economic planning as socialistic nonsense. Wrong governmental monetary policies could cause financial panic, but economic depression could not be cured by legislative action or appropriations from the national treasury. In line with the tenets of nineteenth-century liberalism. Cleveland believed that the economic function of government was not to shape the direction of the nation's economy but to assure a fair field for all and to encourage free and unfettered competition." If only the 20th century presidents had the same guiding principles. Politicians today simply cannot leave people alone. They are arrogant and think they are knowledgeable about everything from highways to welfare. True leadership delegates authority. The love of government has replaced the love of God and neighbor.
One writer said,"Virtue was, with duty, a favorite word, and Cleveland was prepared to associate civic virtue with morality." And he believed big government was immoral. I hope the UC will not believe in government force. I hope that when the church becomes a world power, that the brothers in positions of leadership in their countries"just say no" to using government force to make people be"good," I pray they will not think they see FDR as an example of bold and courageous leadership when he started programs like social security. Bold and courageous actions are to be only in the area of using police force at home and abroad against violent people. Political leaders must have the discipline and guts and patience to leave people alone when all they are trying to do is build a business and build a family.
Government is force
Let's look at some great passages from George Grant's The Family Under Siege: What the New Social Engineers Have in Mind for You and Your Children. He quotes a man who gives a good explanation of how government is force: "The essence of government is force: whatever its end, its means is compulsion. Government forces people to do what they would not otherwise choose to do, or it forces them to refrain from doing what they would otherwise do. So, when we say 'government should do x,' we are really saying, 'people should be forced to do x.' It should be obvious that force should be used only for the most serious reasons, such as preventing and punishing violence. The frivolous, improper, or excessive use of force is wrong. We used to call it tyranny. Unfortunately, too many people think that calling for the government to do x is merely a way of saying that x is desirable. And so we are increasingly forced to do things that are not genuine social duties but merely good ideas. The result is that the role of state coercion in our lives grows greater and greater."
Many conservatives want to use government force to prevent women from getting an abortion. Liberals want to use force to regulate business. Libertarians have the best view of force domestically. James Madison wrote that people need a tremendous amount of freedom. Government is just an umpire. He correctly believed government must walk the line between being too strong and too weak. This applies to men leading their families too. Madison wrote to Jefferson saying,"It is a melancholy reflection that liberty should be equally exposed to danger whether the Government have too much or too little power, and that the line which divides these extremes should be so inaccurately defined by experience." Government, he said, must keep"power within proper limits." Since the time of Madison America has had a lot of experience with power. The U.S. government has grown too big and intrudes too much. It is no longer an umpire, but a player. When umpires start playing we have total chaos.
Grant writes, "A century ago Frederick Bastiat predicted the possibility of a time when politically mesmerized busybodies would 'place themselves above mankind.' He feared that they would 'make a career of organizing it, patronizing it, and ruling it.' They would 'think only of subjecting mankInd to the philanthropic tyranny of their own social inventions.' Worst of all, he said, they would 'confuse the distinction between government and society.'"
"He was right. That time has come."
"For less, the founding fathers launched a revolution. What will we do? ... "the implementation of liberal welfare programs and policies has actually reduced the opportunities of the poor in the open marketplace. Walter Williams, in his brilliant book The State Against Blacks and Thomas Sowell, in his equally insightful book Civil Rights: Rhetoric or Reality? have shown beyond any reasonable doubt that most liberal welfare measures decrease work benefits through higher taxes, decrease job creation especially at the lower levels, and decrease entrepreneurial activity due to increased risk. Such measures as the minimum wage, occupational licensing, union supports, and the regulation of the taxi and trucking trades, instead of protecting the unskilled poor, only eliminate them from the marketplace .... The 'war on poverty' has become, in fact, a 'war on the poor.' Welfare has become a trap, victimizing its supposed beneficiaries."
"What can government do to really help the poor? According to economist Murray Rothbard, the only correct answer is, 'Get out of the way.' Thus he says (in For a New Liberty): 'Let the government get out of the way of the productive energies of all groups in the population -- rich, middle-class, and poor alike -- and the result will be an enormous increase in the welfare and the standard of living of everyone, and most particularly of the poor, who are the ones supposedly helped by the miscalled welfare state."
"Similarly, in his book, Welfare Without the Welfare State, Yale Brozen points out: 'With less attempt to use state power to compress the inequality in the distribution of income, inequality would diminish more rapidly. Low wage rates would rise more rapidly with a higher rate of saving and capital formation, and inequality would diminish with the rise in income of wage-earners."
"If the government were to reduce the level of taxation, remove industrial restraints, eliminate wage controls, and abolish subsidies, tariffs, and other constraints on free enterprise, the poor would be helped in a way that AFDC, Social Security, and Unemployment Insurance could never match. Jobs would be created, investment would be stimulated, productivity would soar, and technology would advance. If that were to happen, says Rothbard, 'the lower income groups would benefit more than anyone else." He says hordes of "welfare activists want to do good" but "a good thing is not good out of its place. As Wall Street journalist Gerald Wisz has argued, 'Government cannot do what the church must.'" The state is not the messiah.
He quotes C.S. Lewis saying, "Of all the tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely expressed for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent ideological busybodies."
Loss of Patriarchy
The key reason there are so many problems in the world today is the loss of patriarchy as I discussed previously. There was more patriarchy in Harlem 50 years ago so anyone could generally walk the streets safely day or night. Have you ever seen pictures of Harlem in the 1930s and 1940s? Black men looking sharp wearing suits and ties and taking care of their families.
Socialism vs. Captialism
It is wrong in advocating force to impose socialism and eliminate capitalism. If people are left to themselves they always choose captialism. The only way socialism can be a national policy is by force. In the ideal world there will be no force so it will have a capitalist economy. It is arrogance to think fallen people are selfish and need to have a gun at their heads to force them to produce and distribute goods in a way that is determined"fair" by the person with the gun at their heads. That person's motivation is irrelevant. It doesn't matter if it's the Mafia or a church run by well meaning people. Government is force. Americans must give up any idea to use force to impose socialism. We have to be higher than well-meaning Democrats and Republicans. Perfect people in the ideal world will not voluntarily have a socialist economy either because it simply goes aganist the spiritual laws of the universe. In fact the only way we are ever going to get to the ideal world is to give fallen man as much freedom as possible economically. We have to have some laws to protect against criminal behavior and use force against criminals and we need some laws to protect children and use force against those who would use them for prostitution, pornography and to sell them drugs. But adults should be trusted, as Thomas Jefferson trusted the people, and be given maximum freedom. The problem is government, not capitalists. God wanted the 20th Century to embrace free enterprise and limited government so the Father could speak and act freely. It is governments that have beat and imprisoned him and well meaning Christians supported the government because Father was seen as being everything from selfish and taking money from American young people to being a heretic.
We discussed socialism and capitalism in the last chapter but let's look at it again and analyze the logic of these two misquided brothers. First, let's define these isms.
Socialism: any of various theories or social and political movements advocating or aiming at collective or government ownership and administration of the means of production and control of the distribution of goods. A system or condition of society or group living in which there is no private property."
Capitalism: an economic system characterized by private or corporation ownership of capital goods, by investments that are determined by private decision rather than by state goals that are determined mainly in a free market."
Communism: a theory advocating elimination of private ownership of property or capital -- goods are owned commonly rather than privately and are available as needed to each one -- equalitarian returns to those working."
As I was writing this section today there was a commentary in my local paper by a man who wrote"Government erects a second wall when it creates barriers to employment and enterprise by the poor. You cannot begin picking up your neighbor's garbage for pay in Portland; you are infringing on the garbage monopoly. You cannot paint 'taxi' on the side of your car and begin carrying passengers; a limited number of permits have been awarded by the taxi commission. Hundreds of occupations require special licenses and hundreds or thousands of hours of education, whether truly necessary or not. To give some kinds of nutritional advice, prepare an income tax return, massage someone, dig a grave, or counsel the troubled all require special licenses." He gives many reasons for the failure of government. For example he says,"The federal Social Security system is a forced purchase of a particular, inferior retirement program. Even low-income workers would receive three to four times as much retirement income if they were allowed to invest in private annuities instead of Social Security."
The book Inquisition tells of the hassle a Korean man had from people who were not into "autonomous non-violence." They perceived Rev. Moon to be greedy. Who do you fear? Monopoly socialist planners with guns or IBM with its mass advertizing competing with other computer companies? The problem is not capitalism but capitalists who go to bed with socialists bureaucrats in Washington D.C. who use force to prevent free trade with South Korean companies. To them South Korea is not "fair" in making computers cheaper. They must be punished. South Korean businessmen run to their socialist planners and try to punish the Americans. Capitalism is not the problem. Socialist violence is the problem.
Father for incentives
In one church publication we read, "In Rev. Moon's recent interview in a Russian newspaper he articulates support for a free enterprise system: 'I would encourage the efforts you are making in business and commerce to develop a wider-based individual incentive system. When people are stimulated, they are inclined to work hard and produce more. This is the secret of the success of the free enterprise systems." He goes on to say that profits are good but there must be balance. I don't think Father would advocate using force to make people lead balanced lives.
In Forbes magazine (2/26/96) Paulist Father Robert Sirico, the president of the Acton Institute for the Study of Religion and Liberty in Grand Rapids, Michigan wrote a commentary on how the left makes the right look like mean spirited people when they attempt to cut back government programs. He begins by saying, "PICTURE THIS SCENE. In the midst of the budget battle, religious leaders from the National Council of Churches met with President Clinton in the Oval Office for 45 minutes. They 'laid hands' on him and prayed that God would 'make the President strong for the task' of fighting budget cutbacks."
"Now, imagine if that same group had come from the Christian Coalition and a conservative President had been tangling with a Democratic Congress. We would never have heard the end of it: a theocrat in the White House. As it happens, the praying at the White House was only the beginning of the liberal clergy's deep involvement in the budget debate."
"Religious leaders, including the Conference of Catholic Bishops, intervened with press conferences and studies to pressure Congress to back off welfare reform. No family caps on welfare payments, they said, and the Senate went along. Twenty years of scholarship providing the connection between illegitimacy, social breakdown and welfare was thrown out the window."
Father Sirico continues, "Pope John Paul II had just visited and admonished us with a message we need to hear: Don't forget those who are left out of society, including the poor, immigrants, the aged, the disabled. These sentiments were echoed by the clergy, but with a twist: Government policy should be responsible for this 'compassion.'"
"Republicans may have waged a valiant fight on behalf of reducing the size of government, but the moral high ground was stolen from them at the height of the battle. At issue most fundamentally is what Thomas Sowell has called a 'conflict of visions.'" He goes on to say we have a choice of centralized or decentralized government. He goes into the argument for private charity vs. public charity. Father wants the members to help the Washington Times fight the good fight against the liberal crusade for big government. I wish I could type the rest of Father Sirico's article. I can only encourage you to read libertarian literature and then get out and fight against President Clinton. We need to show the spirituality of decentralized government.
George Roche in Legacy of Freedom writes, "This blend of political stability and economic and social progress made possible through the diffusion and localization of power was noted as a basic American institution by Tocqueville well over 100 years ago. He pointed out that state and local governments had come first in America and that the national government had been designed later for special purposes. In his careful study of local government institutions in the United States he found that 'municipal institutions constitute the strength of free nations...[because] a nation may establish a free government, but without municipal institutions it cannot have the spirit of liberty .... However enlightened and skillful a central power may be, it cannot of itself embrace all the details of the life of a great nation. Such vigilance exceeds the powers of man.'" God's way is private and intimate, not public and bureaucratic.
One brother wrote to me saying he had been reading material from F.E.E. This is one of those great libertarian organizations out there fighting an uphill battle. Leonard Read was a long time president of the Foundation for Economic Education. It is "an educational champion of private ownership, the free market, the profit and loss system, and limited government." It's magazine is called The Freeman. Mr. Read wrote many books. In one of them called Elements of Libertarian Leadership he writes how libertarian economics is spiritual: "In the previous chapter I argued that a faith in the Creator as the endower of men's rights is an appropriate foundation for libertarian leadership. I repeat, one admits this concept or he is faced with the alternative of submitting to the idea that men's rights are endowments of the state. There is no third alternative."
"Faith, however, is only the down payment, the cornerstone of the foundation for libertarian leadership. Subsequent installments concern the acquisition of a fundamental premise oneself. This takes some difficult thinking -- quite a price to pay! But freedom is not cheaply bought!" He says, "freedom and spiritual faith are two parts of a Divine Principle and tend to rise and fall together." He capitalized the words Divine Principle.
Reagan was right in strengthening the military and standing up to communism, but he was wrong in not cutting back in domestic spending. He should have reduced the debt by abolishing or at least reducing entitlements. Maybe the new conservatives like Newt Gingrich will begin the tearing down of big government. A central theme of his is in his often quoted phrase, "It is impossible to maintain civilization with 12-year-olds having babies, 15-year-olds killing each other, 17-year-olds dying of AIDS, and 18-year-olds getting diplomas they can't read. Yet that is precisely where three generations of Washington-dominated, centralized-government, welfare-state policies have carried us."
Free to Choose
Milton Friedman begins his book, Free to Choose, with a quote that sums up how we must look at naive people whose good intentions pave the road to hell. Justice Louis Brandeis wrote, "Experience should teach us to be most on our guard to protect liberty when the government's purposes are beneficial. Men born to freedom are naturally alert to repel invasion of their liberty by evil-minded rulers. The greater dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well-meaning but without understanding."
This chapter is about politics -- how we organize power in society. I believe there will eventually be a world government in an ideal world.
It's been a long time since Father said these words and still we have a church organization with a hierarchy of leaders. John Morris was one of those leaders for many years. The Morris' are taking Father's comments too far. He does not mean that there will not be a chain of command in this world or any future perfect world. Families, businesses, and governments will always exist and always have power. In the ideal world there will only be the power of persuasion, but everyone will do whatever the world government asks them to do because it will be the best thing for the whole. For example, suppose some entrepreneur discovers a chemical and uses it to build a product, and it is found to be dangerous after millions of people have bought it. The World Government consisting of a few elders will announce this to the world and everyone will immediately stop using the product and dispose of it as they are told to. As I discussed in the chapter on Patriarchy men will always lead their families. Businesses, organizations and groups will always have a leader.
What Father means in the above quotes is that he does not like bureaucracy. He loves leadership. He desperately wants us to be leaders of this world. He also wants the leaders in the church to respect members and treat them as grown ups because he hates socialism. He has always pushed members out into the field. Father wants power but he is for decentralizing power. And anyone who has power in leadership is supposed to be the most serving and sacrificial of all and never thinks he owns anybody. Father loves grass roots, not powerful big shots in beautiful offices high in some Manhattan skyscraper. Tell him how somebody did something creative, and he'll send everyone there to study it. He hates armchair leaders.
Father hates bureaucracy
Father abhors bureaucracy. Tocqueville explained eloquently how top-down leadership destroys people and bottom-up leadership builds people. When America realizes that God is for grass roots power, then they will achieve the greatness that Father keeps asking for.
Tocqueville would be saddened to see that his prophecy of socialism/feminism making men "weak" and women "disorderly" came true.
This century is wrapped up in top down organizing, but the 19th century was correct in seeing all society's problems can and should be handled locally. Before socialists like Marx and Engels and Feminists had power, Americans helped each other in very personal ways. When America became socialist/feminist in the 20th century it broke the spirit of community in America.
Local vs. national government
Tocqueville saw America's strength was in its local government -- not the national. God is seen most at the local level. He writes, "It is not by chance that I consider the township first. The township is the only association so well rooted in nature that wherever men assemble it forms itself. Communal society therefore exists among all peoples, whatever be their customs and laws. Man creates kingdoms and republics, but townships seem to spring directly from the hand of God."
"It is in the township, the center of the ordinary business of life, that the desire for esteem [and] the pursuit of substantial interests ... are concentrated; these passions, so often troublesome elements in society, take on a different character when exercised so close to home and, in a sense, within the family circle .... Daily duties performed or rights exercised keep municipal life constantly alive. There is a continual gentle political activity which keeps society on the move without turmoil."
He writes perceptively against socialist elites who don't believe in decentralized power because they want people "docile": "The difficulty of establishing a townships independence rather augments than diminishes with the increase of enlightenment of nations. A very civilized society finds it hard to tolerate attempts at freedom in a local community; it is disgusted by its numerous blunders and is apt to despair of success before the experiment is finished." And again: "The institutions of a local community can hardly struggle against a strong and enterprising government." And yet again: "If you take power and independence from a municipality, you may have docile subjects but you will not have citizens."
Tocqueville was perspicacious in seeing that big government emasculates instead of empowering people. He saw the danger that unfortunately America has been blind to: "Above this race of men stands an immense and tutelary power, which takes upon itself alone to secure their gratification and to watch over their fate. That power is absolute, minute, regular, provident, and mild. It would be like the authority of a parent if, like that authority, its object was to prepare men for manhood; but it seeks, on the contrary, to keep them in perpetual childhood: it is well content that the people should rejoice, provided they think of nothing but rejoicing. For their happiness such a government willingly labors, but it chooses to be the sole agent and the only arbiter of that happiness; it provides for their security, foresees and supplies their necessities, facilitates their pleasures, manages their principal concerns, directs their industry, regulates the descent of property, and subdivides their inheritances: what remains, but to spare them all the care of thinking and all the trouble of living?"
Big government weakens men
"After having thus successfully taken each member of the community in its powerful grasp and fashioned him at will, the supreme power then extends its arm over the whole community. It covers the surface of society with a network of small complicated rules, minute and uniform, through which the most original minds and the most energetic characters cannot penetrate, to rise above the crowd. The will of man is not shattered, but softened, bent, and guided; men are seldom forced by it to act, but they are constantly restrained from acting. Such a power does not destroy, but it prevents existence; it does not tyrannize, but it compresses, enervates, extinguishes, and stupefies a people, till each nation is reduced to nothing better than a flock of timid and industrious animals, of which the government is the shepherd."
Father makes hundreds of associations, including the HS(Association) in the same spirit the Victorians made tens of thousands of associations to solve problems locally. Tocqueville was amazed how many and how effective Americans banded together to solve problems. It is a myth America was individualistic in the past. Socialism makes people individualistic and uncaring. He writes, "These Americans are the most peculiar people in the world. You'll not believe it when I tell you how they behave. In a local community in their country a citizen may conceive of some need which is not being met. What does he do? He goes across the street and discusses it with his neighbor. Then what happens? A committee begins to function on behalf of the need. You won't believe this, but it's true; all of this is done without reference to any bureaucrat. All of this is done by private citizens on their own initiative!"
He wrote, "The political associations which exist in the United States are only a single feature in the midst of the immense assemblage of associations in that country. Americans of all ages, all conditions, and all dispositions, constantly form associations. They have not only commercial and manufacturing companies, in which all take part, but associations of a thousand other kinds -- religious, moral, serious, futile, extensive or restricted, enormous or diminutive. The Americans make associations to give entertainments, to found establishments for education, to build inns, to construct churches, to diffuse books, to send missionaries to the antipodes; and in this manner they found hospitals, prisons, and schools. If it be proposed to advance some truth, or to foster some feeling by the encouragement of a great example, they form a society. Wherever, at the head of some new undertaking, you see the Government in France, or a man of rank in England, in the United States you will be sure to find an association .... A government can no more be competent to keep alive and to renew the circulation and feelings amongst a great people, than to manage all the speculations of productive industry. No sooner does a government attempt to go beyond its political sphere and to enter this new track, than it exercises, even unintentionally, an insupportable tyranny; for a government can only dictate strict rules, the opinions which it favours are rigidly enforced, and it is never easy to discriminate between its advice and its commands .... Governments therefore should not be the only active powers .... Amongst the laws which rule human societies there is one which seems to be more precise and clear than all others. If men are to remain civilized, or to become so, the art of associating together must grow and improve, in the same ratio in which the equality of conditions is increased." Vice-President Al Gore would think Tocqueville may have been right about the past but we face new challenges and times and now there is more value to the"art of government" than the"art of associating" which could never solve the great problems of society as well as government.
Tocqueville keenly saw that if you centralized power people will give up and let some headquarters do it, whether it is the White House or 4 west 43rd. Members should be given respect so they can tune into God. God knows best how to lead people. And people, as well as God, must be trusted. God expects His children to trust Him to be able to get things from Him. People are the same. People must be trusted if you want to get things from them. Elites in headquarters must let people experiment.
If America had perfected its limited government philosophy of its first 140 years and not gone to the welfare state in the last 70 years, Father would have dynamic brothers to be leaders and feminine sisters to create an atmosphere of love and tenderness. The Libertarian Party is trying to revive those political virtues of the Founding Fathers. Unfortunately, they don't believe in fighting outside our borders so they are not worth voting for, but domestically they are on target with well thought out arguments, like Milton Friedman does, of abolishing or at least privatizing most government agencies and leaving people alone to solve their problems and pursue their dreams without some patronizing elite from some headquarters telling them "no".
The key to it all is that we should always push for as much voluntary means to our ends as possible. Government is force, and it must not be used to try to make people do good such as Prohibition. That was called the "Noble Experiment". It didn't stop anyone from drinking, and it made things worse. Friedman, Hayek and others explain it well. I hope you read their books.
George Washington said, "Government is not reason, it is not eloquence -- it is force." He also said government is like "fire...a dangerous servant and a terrible master." The Founding Fathers respected the individual and were cynical about political power.
Milton Friedman in Capitalism and Freedom wrote: "Underlying most arguments against a free market is a lack of belief in freedom itself."
Rush Limbaugh says, "Socialism has never, ever worked. Usually the failures are measured in economic terms relative to capitalist societies -- but the largest cost has been borne in the trampling of the human spirit. It is an ideology of bondage .... Socialism means collective or government ownership, with central bureaucracies controlling economic planning -- instead of the brilliance that results from free people making millions of daily decisions in a free market. The socialist distrust and hatred of private ownership is not just a fatal flaw. It is also a serious misunderstanding of that yearning for freedom with which all human beings are endowed."
"Something happens when an individual owns his home or business. He or she will always invest more sweat, longer hours and greater creativity to develop and care for something he owns than he will for any government-inspired project supposedly engineered for the greater social good ....The desire to improve oneself and one's family's lot, to make life better for one's children, to strive for a higher standard of living, is universal and God-given. It is honorable. It is not greed." Robert Nozick in Anarchy, State, and Utopia wrote, "The minimal state best reduces the chances of ... takeover or manipulation of the state by persons desiring power or economic benefits...."
Warren Brookes in The Economy of Mind teaches that a flat-rate tax is better than a progressive tax that takes a higher percentage from those who are wealthy. He says almost everyone sees it is a proper and common sense that those who earn more money should pay a higher percentage. As usual this world is upside down in its thinking. People thought Jesus was crazy and killed him. For thousands of years people thought the earth was flat. Most people today think Sun Myung Moon has a dangerous cult. The twentieth century thinks the government is the messiah, and the government is not interested in taking a 10% tithe, it wants most or all of your money. The rallying cry is "soak the rich." It doesn't seem to make any sense, but penalizing the rich hurts the poor.
Brookes writes, "The irony is that flat-rate tax of 16% (with an average $8,000-per-family basic exemption [this was written in the 80s] would actually have raised more revenues in fiscal 1980 ($256 billion) than the old system raised ($240 billion), even though the old system had top marginal rates of up to 70%. In other words, with a 16% flat rate, we could cut the marginal tax rates of all taxpayers and yet increase the revenues raised." He goes on to give details that I won't give.
He says we have a great challenge to teach Americans who are "steeped in the populist ideology of the progressive income tax despite the clear evidence that such a tax does very little to hurt the rich and very much to punish the rest of us."
"King Frederick the Great of Prussia once said, 'If I wished to punish a province, I would have it governed by philosophers.' For the past half century or so the U.S. economy has been punished again and again by too much social philosophy and too little common sense."
"It is ironic that during an address to the Urban League in the 1980 presidential campaign, immediately after the third heckler from the Communist Workers Party had been hauled from the room, Jimmy Carter launched a frankly Marxist attack on Ronald Reagan's tax-cut plan. Calling it 'rebates for the rich,' Carter vowed to 'turn the table on this trickle-down economics.'"
Brookes says people do not know the laws of economics. They use the pejorative term "trickle-down" when the reverse is the case. He writes, "the plain truth is that in any free society, through invention, creativity, and enterprise, a comparatively small part of the population still contributes the major share of economic growth. In this largest and richest of all industrial democracies, it is still safe to say that 80%-90% of the new jobs and economic growth is contributed by the efforts, imagination, energy, and initiative of less than 5%-10% of all individuals, through whose creativity the great wealth of this country still 'trickles down' to the economy."
"In the process, of course, this top 5%-10% has become very rich, and not always very nice .... Yet without those well-rewarded individuals who often have risked everything to create the one new enterprise in ten that succeeds, our economy would become stagnant, and trickle-down would quickly be replaced by dole-out, as it has in Poland, Russia, China, Cuba, or even England."
"This may sound very unegalitarian, and it is. Egalitarianism is an interesting ideal, but it is also a denial of human reality. Liberals like to scorn ...trickle-down, because it encourages the few who are entrepreneurs to generate growth and wealth more rapidly so that the majority of us can have better jobs and a higher standard of living. Yet trickle-down is really the natural order of things, not merely in economics and business, but in nearly every other facet of life as well. We are all blessed by the genius of relatively few." Sun Myung Moon is one of those geniuses. What has come from him has not been a trickle but a flood of truth and love.
"Many thousands of books are published each year, but only a few hundred survive the test of time. The world's greatest music is still the work of a comparative handful of great composers, and most of the world's great art is the product of a few hundred brilliant talents. The Bible is the compilation of the ideas and inspiration of a few dozen prophets, yet it enriches the lives of billions." I saw one headline in a newspaper on Father saying "Prophet for profit." Father is the most generous person who has ever lived. But he is also for economic success. He is not greedy, but he controls billions of dollars. Jesus taught that we are to invest our money and make it grow. Remember the story of the talents. He chastised the person who did not invest his money.
Brookes says, "So, of course, countries that have provided the most individual freedom and the greatest incentives tend to generate the greatest wealth -- economic, technological, cultural, and sociological. And the quickest way to dry up this flow of wealth is to take away both freedom and incentives. Anything that does that will surely turn the spout into a trickle."
"That is precisely what we have been doing in the United States, the historic center of economic creativity in the Western world -- and we have doing it primarily through our tax system, which, contrary to the rhetoric emanating from the left, has been getting steadily more punitive to the 'tricklers' and steadily more restrictive to the initiatives of today's budding entrepreneurs."
"True tax reform in the form of a genuine flat-rate tax system with a top rate of 16-25% would not only reindustrialize the U.S. economy quickly; it would turn trickle-down into a floodtide of individual economic growth and opportunity and make the United States the magnet for world-wide investment. Anyone who still doubts that simply hasn't studied history closely."
Ecology of the Free Market
In his chapter called "The Ecology of the Free Market" he says he saw two editorials in a liberal newspaper. One was "a defense of more government regulation of the economy and of business" because "Our economy has now become so complex and so sophisticated, it is simply impossible to allow it to run by itself without a substantial degree of government regulation. Just six inches below was a fervent plea for environmental integrity, whose gist was: Our magnificent natural environment is simply far too complex and too delicate in its balance for mere mortals to go on interfering in 'its naturally accommodative process.' Such human interference, no matter how well meaning, invariably produces chaos and distortion. So, on the one hand, our economy is so complex that it must be regulated, and on the other, our ecology is so complex that we shouldn't attempt to interfere with it!"
"Now the true ecologist certainly does understand something fundamental about our world that is as applicable to economics as it is to our environment. The natural ecosystem is so infinitely complex and varied, and so remarkably interrelated, that even the best-intentioned efforts to regulate this environment in one way or another invariably bring about reactions and distortion throughout the system. The ecologist understands that the system itself is constantly bringing about accommodation and balance. While these accommodations are frequently painful and difficult, they are usually better in their long-term result, because nature tends to preserve, protect, and strengthen its own creation. So the ecologist opts for a hands-off policy because he has learned that 'it is not nice to fool with Mother Nature." As the Unification Church gets bigger we should have a laissez-faire attitude to its members.
Brookes has an excellent section on religion and economics. He says that when the brutal dictator of Iran, the Ayatollah Khomeini criticized America for being a "satanic force" with its "oppressive and exploitive economic system" Americans felt guilty; "it touched sensitive nerves. There is, for example, little connection between the purity and simplicity of the Bethlehem babe's appearance on earth and the merchandising madness that annually turns the U.S. Christmas season into a frenzy of frustration and robs us of much of its potential holiness and inspiration. This is a sorry annual reminder that while it is true that capitalism seems to have flourished most from the impetus of the Judeo-Christian ethic of individual self-betterment, its economic affluence and prosperity have not always brought spiritual well-being. Quite often it has generated the opposite. Good Christians may become successful capitalists, but successful capitalists are not necessarily good Christians (in spite of what Dale Carnegie may argue)."
"This may explain why, in this most capitalistic of all nations, there now seems to be even more theological distrust of capitalism than there is of atheistic socialism and, indirectly, why no other nation in the West, except Great Britain, has more severely punished capitalism's economic lifeblood (savings and profits) than the United States has. Not surprisingly, no other Western nation saves as little."
"Irving Kristol thinks this American 'love-hate' relationship with capitalism is due to the overwhelming dominance of traditional Christianity in our cultural and economic institutions: 'Orthodox Jews have never despised business, Christians have. The act of commerce, the existence of a commercial society, has always been a problem for Christians.' The reason, Kristol contends, is that Judaism and Islam provide mankind with laws which help them adapt to and live in an imperfect world. Christianity, on the other hand, is more 'gnostic,' or prophetic, in character, calling on mankind to change the world we live in. 'It tends to be hostile to all existing laws and all existing institutions...to insist that this hell in which we live, this 'unfair' world can be radically corrected.'"
"It is this material utopianism which draws so many Christians to socialism, which seems to rest on the Christian ideal of the essential spiritual brotherhood, equality, goodness, and perfection of man, and which theorizes that it is only the ubiquitous and discriminatory economic forces of capitalism that make man behave badly. Remove these forces, the Christian socialist promises, and mankind's inherent goodness will flourish in a kind of kingdom of heaven here on earth."
"Socialist experiments have always enticed Christians, from the ill-fated Brook Farm of the 19th century to the tragic Jonestown of 1978. Almost without exception, these experiments have foundered ... on economic fallacies dominated by distribution, not production -- fallacies that succeed only in spreading poverty, not in producing wealth .... Kristol suggests that 'Socialist redistribution bears some resemblance to Christian charity,' but charity is no more the be-all of Christianity [and Unificationism] than distribution is the whole of economics. Charity without redemption becomes itself an expression of poverty and futility, as does distribution without production to replenish it."
"Moreover, economy itself is the creation and production of value. Since, at its root, value is an expression of spiritual qualities with moral implications, religion, which is the teaching and promulgation of values, is intimately connected to the economy .... Most religions, and especially Christianity and Judaism, also teach that a basic source to our daily supply can be found in the spiritual ideas, inspiration, and qualities of thought and character that come from a relationship to God. From this standpoint, true economy becomes the active expression of God-derived qualities in human endeavor, including the process by which we give raw matter value and purpose, and turn it into economic 'goods.'"
"Faith in the Infinite -- which St. Paul calls 'the substance of things hoped for' -- leads directly to the Christian and Judaic teaching that giving is its own reward, since the more one gives the more one has to give. As St. Luke presents Christ's teaching, 'Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give unto your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withall it shall be measured to you again.' The Golden Rule, actively followed, would wholly destroy both individual and collective poverty. And if everyone is busy giving (contributing and producing), then we have the ultimate underpinning of Say's law that supply generates its own demand and rewards its own effort."
Brookes says America has turned from principles to things, from the spiritual to the physical. Churches are more concerned with liberal policies of redistribution instead of production. He says, "It is no longer unusual to find such venerable organizations as the National Council of Churches and the U.S. Roman Catholics' Campaign for Human Development taking strong leftist stands on such controversial issues as tax reform, rent control, subsidized public housing, welfare, national health insurance, and even vertical divestiture of the oil companies."
"The underlying theme of most of this activity seems to boil down to the demand-side premise that income redistribution and the fully socialized welfare state are the highest human expressions of the Judeo-Christian ethic of compassion, that distribution is in some way more Christian than production, that one (distribution) equates with compassion and the other (production) with exploitation. With all due respect to these religious leaders, at best they seem guilty of a shallow interpretation of their own Biblical teachings (not to mention economic reality), and, at worst they appear to have a strange kind of death wish, through the sacrifice of the metaphysical initiative for the frustrations of power politics."
"It must be transparently clear to any thinking person that the ultimate effect of the creation of the fully socialized welfare state is not merely the destruction of human liberty (and true economy -- the unfoldment of ideas) but the shift of human trust from dependence on God to dependence on the state -- the exchange of worship of Deity for the idolatry and tyranny of Leviathan."
Capitalism and healing poverty
In his section called "Capitalism and Healing Poverty" he writes, "One day in 1979 the front pages of many newspapers featured a haunting picture of the frail Mother Theresa receiving the Nobel Peace Prize for her magnificent but frustrating work among the very poorest of Calcutta's impoverished 7 million -- where up to 50% are unemployed and hundreds routinely die of starvation in the streets each night, defying the most heroic efforts at relief."
"Mother Theresa's saintly life and grand humilities present a clear and implicit rebuke to the opulence of an uncaring West, more concerned for the price of oil and gold than for the cost of human suffering. But that, too, could be a superficial view, since nothing could do more for Calcutta's starving millions than a vital economy."
The poor in America live better than most people in the world. "As Michael Novak wrote, 'No better weapon against poverty, disease, illiteracy, and tyranny has yet been found than capitalism .... Its compassion for the material needs of humankind has not in history, yet, had a peer.'"
"There are, however, no Nobel Peace Prizes for capitalism or for American industry and its fabulously successful assault on poverty. Instead, only brickbats, as the media daily parade industry's more unseemly excesses on page one and bury its successes on page 40, while 'profit' has become an ugly epithet and capitalism itself is scorned as 'trickle-down' economic theory."
"It is ironic that the same Christian Church which was once the strongest apologist for the 'Babbittry' of unrestrained 19th-century capitalism and the so-called Protestant work ethic, has now turned with such savage scorn on the affluent society which this 'ethic' has produced. [As I've said many times, the nineteenth century was more advanced than ours in many ways.] Although some of this radical shift in American Christian thought has been spurred by a long-overdue awakening to the real plight of the poor and minorities, it also seems to represent a more fundamental change in today's Christian models."
One way to effectively teach is not to just give theory but also real stories to help us see the ideas. Brookes does this. One of them is about Bradley Dewey. He says, "The most successful companies in this country have been built, by and large, out of the self-discipline and creative faith in the future of a comparatively few men and women who, had they been motivated purely by short-term greed or 'bottom lines,' could never have achieved what they did. I think for example of Bradley Dewey, who helped give this nation synthetic rubber during World War II when we needed it most, and in the process contributed valuable private inventions for the public good."
"Dewey's greatest achievement was the plastic packaging process known as Cryovac, which revolutionized the production, distribution, and consumption of meat and poultry in this country. The process has saved consumers literally tens of billions of dollars in reduced waste, distribution costs, and spoilage, and has been the basis of the creation of tens of thousands of new jobs."
"It took Dewey nearly 20 difficult years before Cryovac finally became a profitable venture -- during which time he continually confounded his accountants and controllers by sacrificing nearly his entire capital investment and life savings to bring this idea through all its technical and marketing problems to fruition. Dewey's long-range vision ultimately produced a major new and profitable business that has blessed millions; yet there never was a man, in my experience, who was less preoccupied with 'profit maximization' or more occupied with genuine service to his country. For Dewey, profits were a secondary and disciplinary measure of performance, only a means to the larger end of enabling his company to carry out other new ideas that would improve human welfare."
"Real economic growth and vitality depend on this imaginative and courageously trusting type of mentality -- the kind that, for a good example, will rise above nearly three years of million-dollar-a-month losses to produce the billion-dollar success that is now Federal Express."
"In all the sentimental folderol that characterizes so much social and political commentary today, we almost never hear the term 'compassionate' applied to a business executive or an entrepreneur. Yet in terms of results in the measurable form of jobs created, lives enriched, communities built, living standards uplifted, and poverty healed, a handful of 'compassionate capitalists' have done infinitely more for their fellow men than all the self-serving politicians, academics, social workers, or religionists who claim the adjective 'compassionate' for themselves."
Abraham Lincoln said, "You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift. You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong. You cannot help the wage earner by pulling down the wage payer. You cannot help the poor by destroying the rich."
Jose Ortega Y Gasset wrote in 1922, "This is the gravest danger that today threatens civilization: State intervention, the absorption of all spontaneous social effort by the State; that is to say, of spontaneous historical action, which in the long-run sustains, nourishes and impels human destinies."
George Roche in Legacy of Freedom wrote that the nineteenth century understood the need for a "blend of political stability and economic and social progress made possible through the diffusion and localization of power .... The papers of the Founding Fathers, especially The Federalist, are filled with approval of popular rule, so long as that popular rule is locally oriented."
In the nineteenth century, John Stuart Mill's essay On Liberty is devoted to the defense of "one very simple principle, as entitled to govern absolutely the dealings of society with the individual in the way of compulsion and control .... That principle is, that the sole end for which mankind are warranted, individually or collectively, in interfering with the liberty of action of any one of their number, is self-protection. That the only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilized community, against his will, is to prevent harm to others. His own good, either physical or moral, is not a sufficient warrant." Unfortunately, the 20th century has not believed in this "simple principle."
In Lost Rights James Bovard writes, "the more powerful government has become, the more likely the people's values are to be debased. Current tax and welfare policy maximizes the rewards for dependency and the penalties for self-reliance. There is a great deal that people can do to help themselves and to help their neighbors and those in need. But the more powerful government has become, the more people devote their attention to Washington rather than to their own efforts. John Stuart Mill wrote in 1859: 'the most cogent reason for restricting the interference of government is the great evil of adding unnecessarily to its power."
"We have paid dearly for idealizing the state. There is no virtue in denying the law of gravity, and there should be no virtue in denying the limitations of government. Good intentions are no excuse for perpetual failure and growing oppression. The more we glorify government, the more liberties we will lose. Freedom is largely a choice between allowing people to follow their own interests or forcing them to follow the interests of bureaucrats, politicians, and campaign contributors. This is the soul of the debate between liberty and pseudo paternalism, between letting people build their own lives and forcing them to build their lives as politicians dictate."