Archive for the ‘politics’ Category

God Trumps Politics

April 19, 2016

When all is said and done, no matter how you like or dislike the presidential candidates, Clinton, Sanders, Trump or Cruz, there is a sense in which it truly doesn’t matter who is in the White House.  While God may be pleased or displeased with our choices, God will have His way with this country.  He will hold us accountable for our motives when we vote, and hold the president accountable for his or her actions.  However, God won’t be held hostage by anyone.  God controls the affairs of nations, and those who defy Him do so to their detriment.  He will control and use rulers to do His bidding–many times without their knowledge that this is what is happening.  God is in control, and He will never forsake those who love Him.  That, truly, is our only hope.

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When Does the Government Finally have Enough Money

May 3, 2012

I saw the following quote recently:  ”  What kind of person sees nothing wrong in cutting a teachers 50,000 salary by 20%, but doesn’t see anything wrong with a 3% tax increase on a millionaire.”

I would re-word this:  “What kind of government sees nothing wrong in taking more and more money from small business and uses the emotional blackmail of threatening to cut the salaries of public employees, most famously teachers and police.”

This first quote is too simplistic a choice, and issues revolving around pay and taxes go much deeper than this. Governments must learn to live within a budget and can’t continue to take more and more.  England thought they were faced with a similar choice between raising taxes or cutting pay. They decided the fairest thing was to raise taxes on the top tier of income.  A 3% tax increase isn’t what we’re really talking about here.  That would never be enough.  How much is enough?  50% tax rate, 70%, 90%?  They’ve all been tried.  If we did today, what England did, we would have a top income tax rate of 70%.  The median wage would be about $30,000.  Unemployment among the under 25’s would be 40%.  Only 10% would be allowed to go to college.  Health care would be free and mostly unavailable.  The government would become the partial or total owner of all big business in the country.    This was what England looked like in the 1980’s after 30 years of high taxes and the central government running virtually everything.  And the country still came to the edge of bankruptcy more than once.  Emotional arguments like the one above will lead to poor choices.   We think we are being “fair” and can make this type of economic system (redistribution of wealth) work when it has failed everywhere it has been tried.   It leads to people having no motive to excel, and all wealth ending up under government control, when government is not and will never be a good steward of what it manages.  We need to look at where we’re spending our money, not raising taxes.

Prayer when the world seems a mess

March 25, 2011

Lord, thank you for reminding me that You care about the good of our world and about everyone in it.  You care when evil people misrepresent You.  You care when evil people deface the beautiful things You have created.  You care about war, violence, greed and abuse of people and the sacred.  You care about the lost, lonely, sick, misguided and silly people.  You care about everyone I love.  You care about the things that make me sad because they are wrong.  They make You sadder than I’ll ever know.  If I cry over sin in me and others, You wept first, and with more feeling.

Thank you for caring about it all and about me.  And thank you that You are still in control and working out all things for good for all who love You.

Hate Speech

January 12, 2011

Having listened to all sorts of opinions on what constitutes hate speech, I have come up with a definition of my own.  If I perceive someone’s speech to threaten  people I agree with, its hate speech.  If they are merely threatening someone else, and I happen to agree with them, then its not hate speech.

Whose Needs

October 7, 2009

Whenever we hear the case for a government program, we hear sad stories of individuals in distress.  The argument goes that a new government program would be the answer to the person’s problems.  In reality though, there never is a program or a system that fits everyone.  There are always exceptions.  The other reality is that in a country where the government has a program for nearly every problem, the individual hard cases are still hard cases.  They are hard on the program, on the government and on the taxpayers.  Therefore in some European countries, caregivers are being taught they have a responsibility to the society as a whole that is greater than their responsibility to their patient or client.  This really sets professions on their ears when their very reason for existence is healing and helping.  Its creating an identity crisis of mammoth proportions when the healers are told that healing may not be in society’s best interests.  The great irony is that individual hard cases which supposedly justified massive governmental intervention have been the same cases that governments now don’t want to treat, pleading hardship to the society.  There will always be a conflict between individual needs and societal needs.  You can’t balance on the knife edge between them.  It always requires facing up to the society’s ultimate values: the sacred value of each individual life, or the sacred value of the society not to overstretch its economy.

What Socialism Does to Hospitals

September 22, 2009

In all the healthcare debates, my prayer is that whatever we end up with, we will have something that glorifies God in our treatment of His children.  All humans need to be treated with respect as God’s much loved children.  They need kindness, dignity, compassion, and to be served with excellence.  In America I have volunteered and worked in several nonprofit hospitals.  Most of them were faith based organizations.  I saw a lot of people get first rate, compassionate care, and I know they never paid a cent for their care.  Thats how non-profit hospitals work.  They charge for the care they provide, but at the end of the day those who have no insurance or inadequate insurance end up paying according to what they can afford.  Many times that is nothing.  The hospitals write off the difference as part of their non-profit status.  What keeps them in business is the full pay patients who either have “good” insurance or pay a portion of their bills themselves because they can afford to do so.  What is likely to happen if we have a single payer system like England had for years, is these hospitals will be driven out of business and taken over by the government.  If they are government run, everything will be done with cost savings in mind.  And thats what is wrong with socialized healthcare, such as I lived with for years.  The care given is the minimum mandated by the national government.  The care is not based on values of love, compassion, kindness, dignity and respect, but on budgets and mandates. 

In this country some non-profit healthcare institutions rely on large donations for some of their revenue.   In a socialized system, the high, high taxes leave much less left over for donation.  After having more than half one’s income paid out in taxes, people tend to be in a less generous mood, even if they can still afford some additional generosity.  And lastly, since things are run by a government bureaucracy, its all about the good of the masses, not the good of the individual.  Read about the debates in England right now.  Doctors are being encouraged to consider first the good of society over the good of their patients.

Whereas some insurance companies treat people like statistics, at least the hospitals have maintained the ability to be more personal.  A good bit of that is lost if the hospital is a government hospital.  There is always a lot more mandate than money, and the stresses on the hospital show in the treatment of patients.  So, whatever the United States decides it wants to do, my prayer is the outcome will be something pleasing to our Heavenly Father, who is so concerned for persons, He knows the number of hairs on our heads and every tear we shed.  May we as a society be compassionate and kind, not a further coarsened culture.

Hidden Taxes

September 13, 2009

I looked at my phone bill last week and wondered why it gets higher and higher as the months go by.  I scrutinized it further and found the actual service charge hadn’t increased, but the taxes on it had increased.  I added up all the different tax assessments added on top of the service charge.  I was amazed at the total.  Then I figured the percent of these taxes to the original charge and I am paying a whopping 17.85% tax on my phone bill!  Now I’m just a little granny, living in a condo, driving a 10 year old car.  I thought my taxes weren’t supposed to be going up.  Truth is, every time a business tax goes up, I the consumer pay the tax through the increased prices.  What would really be fun is to see what the taxes are for various bills I pay.  How much of my gasoline bill is taxes paid by the oil company.  How much of my electric bill is taxes the utilities have to pay.  How much of my grocery bill is taxes paid by the farmer, the trucking company, and the grocery chain.  And now that I know I’m paying more taxes than I ever realized, where is that money going?  Businesses are subject to audits by the IRS.  Charities are subject to audits by the IRS.  We the people are subject to audits by the IRS.  Why isn’t the government subject to an audit by some agency outside the government?  Thats one of the reforms I would like to see.

A Prayer About Healthcare

August 10, 2009

Lord, we know you are in control, and you influence kings and governors for your purposes.  We approach you at this significant time in our nation’s history and ask you to impress your thoughts on our congress as they make decisions about healthcare reform.  Open the eyes of our lawmakers to writings of our forefathers.  Let them consider the things that made this country great.  Please let their decisions be compassionate, let them honor and dignify all human life, let them give dignity to all persons and let them honor our human rights.  Don’t allow them to make government so strong over us that it becomes our god, for whenever government has taken the place of God, it has always become a cruel tyranny.

Did Sarah Palin “make up” the part about death panels?

August 10, 2009

I just read the blog about  “Dean” saying Sarah Palin “made up” the fear of “death panels” for her son Trig.  I also just googled “Ezekiel Emanuel”.  He is the brother of Rahm Emanuel the president’s chief of staff, he is a bioethicist at the NIH, and he is on the whitehouse staff as an advisor for healthcare reform.  While he states he does not support state assisted suicide, he does consider mental abilities when deciding who should get healthcare.  He does support withholding healthcare for people with mental disabilities.  This is not “made up”.  It was just there in black and white.  However, I would suppose by now the whitehouse has managed to pull down every website about Ezekiel Emanuel I just read.  Look anyway.  They might have missed something.

The First 100 Days

April 30, 2009

The first 100 days reveals the national dive into the socialist pool.  I have been through this and I know how it will turn out.  I lived in England in the eighties and early nineties.  It was a time of high prices, high taxes, high unemployment and a nearly bankrupt economy on every level.  Even the most basic government services were in desperate straits.  Unemployment among the under 30s was 40%.  The National Health Service all but gave up on those over 65.  What we in America would consider basic emergency care was unavailable even in medium size cities.  The Emergency rooms were there, but so understaffed that people routinely died who should have received care.  As they would say in England, “we have equal access to waiting queues, not care”  That was just the health service.  Other services were in equally dire situations.  The populist crowd wanted government to run business so it would be more fair–whatever that means.  However, government just isn’t good at business.  Social engineering has consequences for the economy when it gets too ambitious, and eventually the engineers kill the golden goose.