Skip to comments.The Fallacy of Being Economically but Not Morally Conservative
Posted on 03/02/2014 2:06:40 PM PST by Kaslin
Regular readers of my column know that I usually dont use the words conservative and liberal. Why is that?
Because those words in todays lingolike the words love and democracycan mean almost anything you want. Unlike past times when precision in meanings was important, we have now produced a generation that no longer understands the historic or political meaning of those words.
Within the population of the confused, however, my greatest disappointment is held for those who describe themselves as economically conservative, but socially liberal. But do they even know what that means?
On the economics side, this is what I think they mean:
They believe in capitalism and the free market economy.
They believe in hard work and accomplishing (financially, at least) the American dream.
They believe in smaller government and private enterprise.
They believe in fewer taxes and more opportunities for creating jobs.
On the social, or moral, side, I think it normally boils down to two issues:
They believe in abortion-on-demand.
They believe that homosexual marriage should be equal to heterosexual marriage.
However, theres a major problem in trying to fit those two sides together. In Gods economy, total acceptance of Judeo-Christian morals has usually accompanied true blessings and economic prosperity.
As American history has shown, when people are committed to God and His moral laws, they become fully blessed. Likewise, a review of Gods history with the Israelites reveals this principle: Obedience to Gods moral absolutes brings about economic prosperity, but ignoring them brings economic disaster. The two are intertwined.
Scripture shows us a glaringly obvious trendwhen Gods people dismissed His moral absolutes, the scourge of violence by the Assyrians, Babylonians, and Persians was their fate.
Sometimes the judgment wasnt immediate. God is patient and long-suffering, and He would sometimes wait a long time for them to turn away from their foolishness. But eventually the judgment would come.
Make no mistake about it, God is consistent. He will not bless a nation that sheds the blood of innocents and shakes its fist at His purpose for the gift of human sexuality.
Of course, such a tight correlation may prompt one question: How can countries like China and Japan prosper without even a thought of God?
The answer is the same as to why God judged His people more strictly than the pagan empires of the timeHis people should have known better. To be in covenant with God and then disregard that covenant carries a far greater judgment than not knowing God at all.
For America, the $100 trillion unfunded liability and the soon to be $20 trillion debt is only the beginning of the judgment we have brought upon ourselves. We have bought the fallacy that we can be economically-oriented without regard to Gods moral laws, and we will have to pay the price.
We should have known better.
So which is it economic or moral -
Exporting jobs and causing a recession?
That had more to do with failure to keep the Sabbath for the Land than anything to do with morality.
There never were clear definitions of “conservative” and “liberal”, or of any similar term. Precision in meanings never was. People are too varied.
If you want a thorough survey of what “conservative” has meant in the US, I recommend starting with Russell Kirk.
All such are fuzzy concepts, and they mutate. At best they define sets with their centers at some distance from other sets.
I don’t disagree with the desiderata in your ideal conception of conservatism, but let’s be real.
Social liberalism creates liberal voters and larger government, conservative economics require social conservatism among the voters and in the culture.
I’ve noticed that a lot of, not all, but a lot of folks who say they’re fiscal conservatives and social liberals end up sucking at the fiscal end as well.
It really boils down to this:
Do you really think that someone who believes (morally) that anything goes - that you can smoke your brains out, have an abortion for any reason and at any time, give lots of free welfare to anyone who asks for it, sex with anyone means nothing and equate the LGBT lifestyle to just another another “normal” way of life...
is really going to
have ANY kind a fiscal discipline or say no to any kind of spending?
Bum for later
No what they mean is financially conservative and at the same time willing to help the widow and the sick.
Anyone who believes abortion is ok is evil.
and homosexual relationships are forbidden by God
Uhh, the Persians rescued the Jews from oppression. There is no record in the Bible of oppression by the Persians. There is the partial exception of the Book of Esther, but the Persians wound up in practical terms on the Jewish side.
Actually, God judged Israel because they did not keep the Sabbath rests, which were to be every 7th year, in which the land was to be allowed to rest, debts were to be forgiven, slaves were to be set free, etc. They functionally kept the Sabbath, but only in form, and not with their heart. The reason they had 70 years of bondage and dispersement to Babylon was because the the 70 Sabbath rests they had never kept from the time they entered the Promised Land, as God had told their leaders. Daniel explains this.
I wrote a whole book on the topic. Your understanding, although conventional, is critically incomplete.
BTW, I believe you are thinking of 2nd Chronicles 36:20-21, where Ezra cites Jeremiah. The Sabbath for the Land is not specifically mentioned in the book of Daniel.
The whole idea of conservatism had been linked to traditional moral issues, and only in the past couple decades has it been delineated as fiscal or moral or both. I agree with this writer. You cannot divorce the moral values from fiscal conservatism and it continue to be considered conservative for very long before the immoral values of the person corrupt the whole. One of the reasons I had for quitting the libertarians was for this reason. They espoused fiscal issues and the Catholic writers were great writers on many conservative issues, but when it came to actually supporting traditional values, the libertarians vote with the Communists....all the way down the line. Their argument was that the “state” should not be having anything to say or do with moral issues, which I totally could agree with except for this one fine point: Once the state has already ruled on an issue, how does one get it back to just the local states to deal with, unless you bring the issue to vote and overturn the immoral law? They could NOT ANSWER that for me. Once the State (federal government) has its say, then they were unwilling to do ANYTHING to help undo that horrific law. ONe would have to conclude that they are okay with abortion, same-sex marriage, and any number of sins that have become prominent. I cannot go back to supporting libertarians again. The difference between them and Communists is one issue alone..that one being fiscal conservatism. They might as well say they are fiscally conservative Communists.
The majority of the people on this planet do not look to the same God you do to know that they are right or wrong.
You judge everything by what you believe that your version of God said, wants, and expects.
Others have a right to set their own standards according to what they believe or do not believe. You have a right to believe as you will but your rights stop completely just short of imposing them on others. That is why we have laws.
Living in a christian theocracy would be no better than living in an islamic theocracy. I refuse to be ruled by religious zealots no matter what flavor they are.
On the social, or moral, side, I think it normally boils down to two issues..."
You think? You think? Is basic reportorial research too much to ask for before commentary? Worthless.
I will point out to you that if any deity exists at all, then it does matter.
Your post assumes atheism as a given.
You can’t get there any other way.
For you to have any intellectual merit here at all, you will need to prove the non existence of a creator God. Even agnosticism is not enough here. You have attempted to imply that categorically there can be no being with the authority to impose standards on its creation.
You are generally correct.
Conservatives of the last century often weren’t economic liberals. Chesterton and his circle advocated semi-socialist policies, and of course we Catholics have Rerum Novarum and its later teachings. 19th century conservatives were even less libertarian. If you will recall, Bastiat’s most famous work is a response to Thiers, who supported high tariffs. Thiers was the man who crushed the Paris Commune.
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