Tag Archives: welfare state

Bill Lockwood: Welfare and “Original Sin”? 0 (0)

by Bill Lockwood

Ellie Bufkin of the Washington Examiner, wrote the following. “Democratic Texas Rep. Al Green claimed that President Trump’s impeachment was necessary to deal with the ‘original’ sin of slavery.

“During a Saturday appearance on MSNBC, the congressman cited an interest in acting on behalf of people of color. ‘I do believe, ma’am, that we have to deal with the original sin,’ Green said to host Alex Witt. ‘We have to deal with slavery. Slavery was the thing that put all of what President Trump has done lately into motion. It’s [the] insidious scion of racism. The president has played on racism, and he’s used that as a weapon to galvanize a base of support to mobilize people.’”

Let’s step back a moment.

The biblical scholar R.C. Foster observed over a hundred years ago that the rejection of Jesus by his home town of Nazareth (Luke 4) was in part due to the “most common and worst of crimes”—ingratitude. “It is often true that the more that is done for unworthy people, the less they appreciate it and the more they presume upon the generosity of others and grow in the false grandeur of their own conceit.” That this is self-evidently true is seen in the sad reality now in America. Ingratitude.

Prior to the creation of our welfare state in America, charity was practiced by individuals, churches and private organizations. This was the formula of the Founding Fathers. So successful was it that there is no record of people dying on the streets because of lack of food, shelter or medical assistance. Americans were the most generous people on the earth. So thought Alexis de Tocqueville when visiting our country from France in 1831 and 1832.

Enter the welfare state of the federal government. It has helped create the opposite of its stated goal of alleviating the poor. Not only has poverty continued to rise in America, but the sense of “entitlement” followed by the “worst of crimes”—ingratitude—has become commonplace. This has now morphed into a boiling hatred for whites in many minority communities that one can hear, see, and feel.

See the statistics on recipients of the state-sponsored welfare state. According to the U.S. Census Bureau “approximately 21.3 percent of people in the United States participated in major means-tested government assistance programs each month in 2012.” Participation rates for the black population is at 41.6 percent; followed by Hispanics at 36.4 percent; then Asians or Pacific Islanders at 17.8 percent; lastly, by non-Hispanic whites at 13.2 percent. Stating the obvious, the Bureau concluded “blacks were more likely to participate in government assistance programs in an average month.”

Added to overt financial assistance from the public trough, minority communities have also been the favored recipients of government policies such as affirmative action which has been touted as necessary to fight the enduring effects of white racism. Our entire culture is saturated with affirmative action practices, from educational institutions, medical schools, law schools, even the military itself. But instead of alleviating racial animosity, the only enduring lesson that is being ingrained is hatred for a white America that supposedly is racist.

Al Green

Back to Al Green. Hatred simply seethes in America. The comment by Democratic Texas lawmaker Al Green, who claims that America needs to deal with racism of the past by impeaching President Trump, is a perfect example. To Green, everything that occurs is colored in racial tones. White America can elect a Barack Obama, can pay millions of dollars to black sports and entertainment hero’s; can acquiesce to affirmative action programs that favor people of color in all segments of society—yet nothing is enough. Atonement is never found. This is the way hate works. Hate is a leviathan with an insatiable appetite. Always hungry for more, but never satisfied. Al Green is afflicted with it, and it has become so pervasive that Green feels comfortable airing his hatred on national television.

The “original sin” of which Al Green speaks is ingratitude. His own. His ingratitude for being a legislative leader in the greatest country that has ever existed. He has allowed the ingratitude in his soul to hard-boil into hatred. Al Green hasn’t ever been a slave; nor his father, and I dare say even his grandfather. He knows no slave holders in America, nor the sons of slave holders. The only people that are slaves are the middle-class taxpayers who support his gigantic welfare state. But this is not enough.

Just as with the election of Barack Obama, many whites supposed that racial animosity would subside, but they were mistaken. It metastasized. Hatred knows no bounds. Even if Donald Trump is successfully impeached and removed from office, which would be a travesty in American justice, Al Green’s hatred will only increase.

Bill Lockwood: How Our Socialist Welfare System Distorts Reality 0 (0)

How Our Socialist Welfare System Distorts Reality“It is the fact that socialism itself is immoral.”

by Bill Lockwood

In one discussion after another conservative commentators correctly point out that socialism “does not work.” Charlie Kirk, for example, has absolutely destroyed socialist arguments in one episode after another on YouTube. Reminding the uneducated Millennials that people have fled socialist nations, he highlights the failure of that totalitarian system. Since socialism has proved to be such an abysmal failure, it is a wonder that many young Americans wish to adopt it.

But there is one argument against socialism that needs more emphasis than it is receiving. It is the fact that socialism itself is immoral. It creates an immoral society and to the extent it has has already invaded America since the Progressive Era, it has eroded our value system as well as the concepts of private property.

Only two methods exist by which money may flow from my pocket to yours. Either by my free-will contribution or your theft. The first is obviously voluntary. The second is forced. Socialists of all colors and stripes always are interested in using force to remove my goods to use it themselves or distribute it to others. But it is still theft. The fact that the United States government is now the legislative tool to accomplish this does not change its nature—it is unethical. And, because it is unethical our concept of reality has become distorted.

“Hands Off My Healthcare!”

Our near-socialist system (government theft and redistribution now make up 2/3 of the federal budget) has been ingrained in the populace for nearly 100 years. It has in turn dissipated our thinking. Consider the following.

How many placards have we seen carried by those who love socialistic systems that read, “Hands Off My Healthcare!”? Stop and think for a moment.

When your teenage son or daughter has had an automobile that is paid for by parents; whose insurance is subsidized by mom and dad; and auto-repair bills covered by parents—what would one think if dad said, “I am not paying your insurance or car payments for the next 6 months”—and the child demands, “Keep your hands off of my car!”

The child is so spoiled it has warped his view of reality. “It is not YOUR car, my son.” If you want a car—go buy your own, pay the insurance, buy your own gas and get it repaired yourself.

Exactly. Healthcare is a service that is provided by the taxpayer via government force. Those who chirp, “Keep your hands off of my healthcare!” have lost perspective. It is not your healthcare as long as the working men and women of the middle class are paying for it.

Dulls the Incentives

Hunger and pain are not always bad things. God has built these into the natural world as incentives for us to WORK. Just as pain induces me to keep my hand off of a hot stove so hunger teaches me that idleness is unproductive. This is why God said, “Whatsoever a man sows, that shall he also reap” (Gal. 6:7). Reaping pain encourages me to avoid the same trap in the future.

But what happens when the welfare checks are doled out? Idleness is encouraged. Indolence grows. Instead of being incentivized to work, people are encouraged to avoid it. This is why we now have an entire third and fourth generation of people who are living off of the workers in society. The natural incentives God put into place are re-arranged. Pain has now shifted to taxpayers who frantically search for methods to avoid more pain of paying higher taxes while working longer hours.

Politicians are Compassionate?

From the “compassion” of socialism to the “conservative compassion” of the George Bush’s of the world, we have adopted a skewed view of the world when it comes to helping the poor. Politicians promise nothing to one segment of society that they have not unconstitutionally stolen from another class of people. In other words, it is easy to be “compassionate” with other people’s money, isn’t it?

Our entire system is structured along these lines. Bigger schools, more healthcare, more government housing, more free food, etc. Workers can hardly afford their own insurance because they are busy paying for others’. The politician who promises the most frequently gets elected. But they never give from their own pockets. It is with the licentious tax and spend stick that they take from the “rich” to give to the “poor.” And, just as noted above, once this begins, it snowballs.

Now the receivers have become the majority of the population. In reality, there is no compassion in this model. It is self-enrichment by political animals who maintain power and position by continuing this Robin Hood system.

Re-arranging What is Important in Life

Socialistic welfare spending causes individuals to re-arrange their priorities in life. It is common knowledge that the entire tattoo industry is funded by hand-outs. Casino gambling has become habitual. And much of this occurs with government welfare checks.

So, what is the lesson? Providing people relief in one area of life—giving them money or subsidizing their housing—encourages them to spend money foolishly. And how often have we heard criticisms of the Millennials or Generation X not saving money for retirement?

Why should they save money for retirement? We have handed them a platter full of goodies and they have glutted themselves on other people’s labors.

Only one remedy remains. Get back to the Constitution whereby it was illegal for government to confiscate property of one person to give it to another. The cancer of socialism has grown exponentially, however, and it is a massive tumor burdening our culture.

Modern Judas Politicians 0 (0)

Modern Judas Politicians

by Bill Lockwood

The text of John 12 is instructive insight into the distinction between true and false “compassion.” During the last week of our Lord’s life He came to Bethany where was a feast in his honor. At the somber meal, Mary, the sister of Martha, anointed the feet of Jesus with very expensive “pure spikenard.” It was a class of aromatic amber-colored oil the value of which was equal to a year’s wages for the common agricultural worker of the day (12:5).

Judas, the treasurer of the apostolic band, objected to such a lavish expenditure and queried why the ointment had not been sold for 300 shillings and the money given to the poor (12:5). John gives us this editorial note after years of hindsight, “Now this he said, not because he cared for the poor, but because he was a thief and, being the keeper of the treasury, took away what was put therein.” Obama and company cares very little for the poor, in spite of multiplicity of speeches which portray himself as their champion.

It is easy to frame a grasp for power or wealth beneath a cloak of “compassion.” Judas’ words painted him as a one concerned “for the poor” but the reality was quite different. So also today our modern unconstitutional welfare state is driven by the same deceit. One cannot begin discussing, for example, the removing of taxpayer money from even the murderous Planned Parenthood without immediately facing the argument of “compassion” to woman’s needs which they are said to provide. How can we remove money from “the poor?”

The Democratic Party majors in this Judas-style question and the Republicans do their best to catch up by insisting that they are “compassionate conservatives.” But it is easy to be compassionate with others’ money, isn’t it? Added to that is the fact that our gargantuan welfare state, bloated out of reasonable financial responsibility bounds, is unable to even keep track of the billions of dollars flowing through the hands of bureaucrats who are the “keepers of the bag.”

Compassion
There is much spoken of compassion today but seemingly very little known. Some suppose that meeting physical needs of the American populace is to be prioritized over spiritual needs; others think that giving my tax dollars to Uncle Same satisfies the obligation to be compassionate; still others talk of the lack of compassion in those who wish to return to a Constitutional government in which it was illegal to redistribute taxpayer money to various special interest groups or segments of society.

First, true compassion is to be exercised at a personal level. Government programs are no substitute for true compassion. Actually, Uncle Sam’s programs are not really compassionate at all, but destructive to society. Witness the growing minority unrest in the inner city—many of whom are recipients of government handouts provided by other people. No one watching these riots unleash on the cities by destroying private property has the impression that the rioters are thankful for the provisions that have been given them by others. What is the problem? True compassion is a personal matter. In order to discriminate between those who are truly needy and those interested in bilking the system by refusal to work, personal contact is necessary between the given and the recipient.

Sometimes poverty comes upon people through no fault of their own. Fires, earthquakes, crippling accidents, deaths and diseases injure people. Christian charity is called for (1 Cor. 13:1-3). But on the other hand, according to the Bible, sometimes poverty is the due penalty for laziness. “How long will you lie there, O sluggard? When will you arise from your sleep? A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest, so shall thy poverty come upon thee like a robber, and want (lack) like an armed man!” Solomon insists that work is good for the soul.

The point is, how is one able to distinguish between those truly in need and those who are taking advantage of the system? Only by exercising compassion at a personal level, where people might know. As Marvin Olasky, former professor at the University of Texas at Austin, observes, failure to “establish personal relationships with recipients” means that one cannot “sufficiently discriminate between the needy and the lazy” (The Tragedy of American Compassion, 26).
Government programs absolutely violate this major component of personal contact between the giver and the recipient. And since the nature of mankind is such that man will live of the labor of others if that is possible, government or structural poverty only grows under the oversight of bureaucracy.

Second, true compassion recognizes that man’s most important need is spiritual. At one time, when churches were distributors of goods to the needy and not the government, spiritual emphases were in place. As a matter of fact, Jesus Himself criticized the crowds who came to him interested only in food and not spiritual nourishment (John 6:25-28). Instead of feeding them, He instructed them to “work” for spiritual sustenance. This is a shock to today’s society which lauds the person or agency which provides clean needles to the drug addict or contraceptives to the promiscuous and call it “charity.” This just shows that we have forgotten the true meaning of compassion.

In the end, all government programs accomplish—for poverty rates have remained unchanged since the advent of The New Deal and The Great Society—is accumulating power into the hands of the politicians. Exactly what Judas had in mind.  

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