March 21, 2008

Capitalism v the Devil and God's redemption

There's quite a few people who seem that capitalism should go to the devil as a foal should return to her mare. Those people need to quite honestly get a clue. Ok, if you want to define capitalism as that hulking monstrosity of big business and government regulations that walks around purporting to be capitalism then maybe you have a point -albeit a point with its definitions mixed up. There are plenty of evils that occur under (and quite likely are exaggerated by) the current economic system, but to denounce the free market system because of the farce currently occurring....it's simple minded at best. I can't write an economic treatis on the stuff. I'm not that skilled. What I do know though is that there are really only two directions you can take this. You can increase the regulations and restrictions or you can decrease them. It's darn certain that the former won't work. You end up with socialism and communism and the mess that is the former Soviet Union. No one could say that was an unmitigated success. Yeah, argue that wasn't real socialcommunism. Whatever. The mechanics of it don't work no matter what you try to call it. The other alternative is to stop letting the bureaucrats sit pulling the strings (all hauling the money in towards them) and see what happens when business actually start working together without a jillion gov agents fouling up the works. Instead of letting the gov redistribute all the money (and taking plenty off the top) wouldn't it be something if we actually got to decide how to use our money? No more tax money going to Planned Parenthood and condoms for 12 year olds. More money going to the widows and orphans living in our own communities. More money for us to share with each other period whether that be furniture and food for a family who've lost everything or a bottle of red passed around a room filled with shared experience and the glow of community.

Writing about this makes me wish I'd read more about the Old Testament laws. When God was laying down His laws and rules concerning the way His people would live, He laid out an entire economic system. In a way the point isn't whether capitalism or socialism or whatever is a better, more just way to structure society. God has given us plenty of principles in His word about the way we should order our lives -economy included. We just need to stop arguing about our systems long enough to really try and understand what God wants of us. Now, that doesn't mean that I'm not staunchly on the side of free markets. I am, and I think that it's more in line with God's way than various other schemes. However, even though I think my way is right I recognize that God's redemption is necessary in all areas of our lives. Even the "right" thing can be done in a way that dishonors God. And most of all I need to remember that even Christians with "stupid" ideas about economics are still fellow workers in the vineyard and that I should -must- esteem them as co-heirs with Christ. I don't have to pretend to agree with them on everything, but I must never ever lose sight of our common goal and our common destination.

2 comments:

Elisa M said...

And most of all I need to remember that even Christians with "stupid" ideas about economics are still fellow workers in the vineyard and that I should -must- esteem them as co-heirs with Christ. I don't have to pretend to agree with them on everything, but I must never ever lose sight of our common goal and our common destination.

ok, why did you have to say that and make me feel sick at my stomach (in a good way, in the 'you should get off your high horse and think about that, Elisa kind of way...)

Thanks i guess. ;)

Natalie_S said...

Probably because I started writing this because I was ticked off at something someone else wrote, but halfway through it I realized that I really couldn't just rant about someone else in the body of Christ without coming to terms with the fact that they are in fact my brother/sister in Christ.

If you see me change gears abruptly in my posts it's because in the writing I've learned something that tends to challenge the very heart of what I wanted to write about.