Saturday, January 23, 2010

Another Democrat Attacks Republican Principles

Today, I came across a rambling and bitter blog complaining about Republicans and our opposition to the government takeover of health care (and other private-sector enterprises such as car manufacturing, banking, and insurance. She believes that our opposition is un-Christ-like. Her essay reveals a frighteningly shallow understanding of the principles of liberty on which our nation was founded and an even more shallow understanding of Christ-like charity. I say "frighteningly" because she has the power of the vote. Here is my response to that essay:

The writer said, "I don’t get how a huge group of Mormons are so against their own president and speak so harshly of him and are so judgemental [sic] of him...."

I don't know anyone who is against the president himself. Democrats can say we're racist all they want, but that'll never make us racists. The bottom line is that we oppose his irresponsible and unconstitutional big-government agenda. The man (with no demonstrated valid birth certificate) currently residing in the Whitehouse is but one of the many politicians who have strayed far beyond their Constitutional limits. It is that extreme deviation from the Constitution we oppose, not the man per se.

She said, "[d]on’t we learn from a young age that 'We believe in being subject to kings, presidents, rulers, and magistrates, in obeying, honoring, and sustaining the law'?" and places her trust in our "God-inspired government".

Yes, and we also believe those same kings, presidents, rulers, and magistrates also must obey, honor, and sustain the law. In fact, our politicians at all levels (as do law enforcement officers, military servicemen, and attorneys) swear an oath to "support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same...." Any student of the US Constitution knows that it establishes a strictly-defined and limited federal government and delegates to that government limited powers to perform only those specific functions while retaining to the sovereign States and the people all other rights and powers. Over the past 100+ years, the federal government has reached far beyond the limits established by the Constitution (this usurpation of power accelerated sharply about the time of the enactment of the 19th Amendment).

As for her trust in our "God-inspired government" -- whoa! I see absolutely no inspiration in the way our government is running! I believe the Constitution and the form of government it mandates are God-inspired. But, our government has stayed far from that document. Over the past 100+ years, our courts, Congress, and administration have become cesspools of corruption. That is not a "God-inspired government"!

She went on to say it is a sin that we Republicans don't accept (the blogger prefers the term, "freak out") the notion that we should legislate health care for all.

I, on the other hand, agree with God when he said it is a sin to steal (Exodus 20:15). It is a sin for me to steal from another to pay my own health care bills. It is no less a sin to ask other people with guns (the government) to do the stealing for me. The Constitution does not authorize anyone to tax (legalized plunder) one person to pay another person's bills for health care, food, lodging, child care, transportation, or any other personal need or want. Such coercion is hardly Christ-like. Yet, that is what Democrats and far too many Republicans advocate.

She pointed out that "the Prophet speaks of helping others and serving others and that that is what the government welfare system does".

If that's "what the government welfare system does", why has it done nothing to reduce the portion of Americans who are in poverty? Government programs have only enabled the hereditary dependency on the dole for generations. And, I challenge the writer to cite where any prophet has endorsed the government welfare system or lauded any success it might have had. Please note that, as in funding a government-subsidized or government-managed health-care industry, the government welfare scheme relies entirely on government theft of private property (some call that process "taxation") for its existence.

She claimed it is un-Christ-like to be unwilling to "help with their tax dollars or even just speak kindly about people in need, like illegal aliens or gay people, because they think all their rights are being taken away and that they shouldn’t have to give their hard earned time or money".

I am offended that anyone would call me "un-Christ-like" simply because my understanding of charity does not include the concept of force or the threat of force (which is what taxation requires). In addition to faithfully donating my tithes and offerings to the Church, I share my income and time with various charities outside the church. In fact, I donate more to charity in a few months than our current vice president, Joe Biden, has during his entire political career (averaging a generous average of $369 to charity per year) and our current president during all but the last five years of his career (averaging a generous average of 1% to charity per year prior to 2005). This charitable generosity is typical of Democrat politicians. They prefer to be generous with somebody else's money -- not their own.

Advocates of big-government social programs such as government-run welfare and government-run health care (including the blogger) say they are are necessary because individual "greed gets in the way". The problem with that stand is that those advocates assume that all of us are tiny little selfish souls requiring coercion just like they are. They don't know, understand, or care that a a substantial portion of us do give -- and give a lot! And such was the case before big government started stepping in. Now too many are like the blogger and expect big government to do everything at somebody else's expense. Don't judge us Republicans by that Democrat selfishness! Nevertheless, their property is theirs and it is their right to use it however they wish -- and it is a primary role of government to protect that right to be selfish or generous with one's own property.

The author noted that, "Jesus would have given to the poor and helped the needy – well that’s what socialism does and what the Democrats want to have happen."

Yes, Jesus helped the poor and needy in his day. He would do so today. He expects us to do likewise and has established a couple of ways to do that such as asking (not demanding by threat of government force) for Fast Offerings and other forms of charity. A true disciple of Christ gives of himself and his own resources out of love for the Savior and love and concern for one's fellow man. But, Jesus would never force any one to give. I recall learning that in our preexistence, there was a war in Heaven over whether we should be forced to do good. Jesus was opposed to that concept. Socialism, which you seemed to believe Christ taught, is imposed by the State. The United Order -- which some erroneously liken to Socialism -- was entirely voluntary as are all other offerings in the Church.

She acknowledges that "free agency is a God-given right....And my free agency is that I want to have universal health care. That’s my choice. It’s also the choice of millions within the Democratic Party."

What a profound misunderstanding of free-agency! She actually believes she has a right to have me pay for her "universal health care"! Nobody has a right to infringe on the rights of others -- except, apparently, the blogger. She wants the government to deprive me of my right to use my property (hard-earned fruits of my labors) on her behalf! Government's role is to protect my rights -- not infringe on them to supply to her something she did not earn. If she gets any help from me, it be because of my sense of charity -- not because I am a victim of legalized theft.

Gabrielle seems to misunderstand what a "right" is. A right is something one is free to have or do as long as it doesn't infringe on the rights of others. For example, I have a right to freedom of speech. (I do not have the right to require that somebody listen to me.) My exercise of the right of free speech does not cost anyone else anything -- unless I lie about somebody or otherwise cause someone undue harm by my speech or I expect/demand someone else pay for the broadcast of my speech at his expense.

Basically, if a good or service costs effort, time, or money to produce, I do not have a right to that good or service unless I pay for it. When I expect somebody else (ie a taxpayer) to pay for a good or service I want or need, I am infringing on that taxpayer's rights. It does not matter whether I infringe on that taxpayer's rights directly or I allow/expect/demand another entity such as government to do that infringing for me. I think what Gabrielle really wants to see is charity. Charity is where a person, or group of persons, voluntarily help those who have a need they cannot pay for. Charity is how people got health care long before insurance and coercive government came along.

She reminds us that Jesus said "if you love me feed my sheep" and therefore asks, "doesn’t it make sense that the US government should mandate health care for everyone?"

She seems to believe He was speaking of establishing soup lines for the poor. She should know better. Jesus was teaching Peter about meeting the spiritual needs of His flock -- not giving them a bowl of soup. Even so, He gave that instruction to Peter and, by extension, to the members of His church -- not to the government! No, it does not "make sense that the US government should mandate health care for everyone" based on taking that one teaching out of context!

My non-church charitable giving includes a hospital foundation that pays for the care of people who have no insurance and cannot afford to pay for health care. That is charity. Letting the government take money from me to pay those same bills is not charity!

That blog seems to be quite bitter toward Republicans. I suggest the writer compare the difference in charitable giving between members of the two major political parties. She will find that we Republicans are hardly the sinful, compassionless people she seem to believe we are. Instead, we understand that true charity provides personal satisfaction and joy and brings eternal rewards while helping those in need. Delegating "charity" to the government and it's forced paying of somebody else's bill brings absolutely no reward to the "giver" in this life or the next.

According to a study published a couple of years ago, the average Republican donates 30% more to charity than does the average Democrat. Republicans are also more generous at donating time and blood. Democrats, on the other hand, seem to favor government-paid-and-controlled "volunteer" organizations such as AmeriCorps and the Peace Corps. Sure, they might do some good, but extracting my money to fund any government-run program just isn't charity!

If we Republicans weren't subjected to so much forced charity, we'd have more resources to be truly charitable and Democrats would have more resources to spend on their selfish selves.

All that said, I challenge anyone to identify at least one government program program (ie Medicare, Medicaid, SCHP, Social Security, Veterans Administration health care, public education, postal service, airport security, border control, Congress itself) that is, or has been, run efficiently and wisely for any significant period. Does anyone really believe that a government-run health care will be any better?

Recommended book:
Who Killed Health Care?: America's $2 Trillion Medical Problem - and the Consumer-Driven Cure
Who Killed Health Care?: America's $2 Trillion Medical Problem - and the Consumer-Driven Cure

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