28 February 2013

The Cancer of Militarism

Social Parasites Part 4

While it may seem that I've strayed off topic, all of these issues are related. For example with so much of the economy structured around the 'defense' industry it has become like a cancer that can't quit growing. Throttling down the militarist engine wounds the American economy. Rather than secure our freedom the Military-Industrial complex and especially those who sit atop it have made us all into slaves. They're the worst thing for our country, for our society and for the world but we can't divorce ourselves from them....it would bring America down.[i]

21 February 2013

The Economics of Empire

(Social Parasites Part 3)

Our economy long ago abandoned producing functional things that people need and became dependent on people buying things they want. And when the economic model reached the breaking point it has rescued itself through various means. In the 1980's as Capitalism reached its limits with the American framework, new doors were opened through outsourcing and easy credit. In the 1990's a new economic energy was generated via the Internet which made the potential of globalism more accessible to small businesses and individual entrepreneurs. Today there are new adjustments taking place that allow the economy to continue to function, but clearly the limits are being stretched to the breaking point.

20 February 2013

Money's Ethos and Essence- Security and Power

(Social Parasites Part 2)

Many of these impoverished folks make foolish decisions with their money. In some cases it exhibits a lack of patience, in other cases their actions exhibit short-term thinking. Renting appliances and furniture is a prime example of this. The companies engaged in this business are disreputable and sleazy, they prey on the poor and take advantage of them. Often it would be better to save the money and buy the couch or washing machine outright...and when they fail to do this, they are condemned for a lack of prudence.

But this judgment is invalid because it is made from a secure standpoint. The financially secure judge the poor but they're projecting their own security into the mindset of the poor.[i]

19 February 2013

Sparring with an Elder over the state of the Church and what to do when you live in a Spiritual Wasteland

This is an exchange I had a couple of months ago with a pastor who is also a longstanding friend. We respect each other but we often disagree. One of my frustrations is that people who are coming from what I might call the ‘default’ position concerning culture have a terrible time even grasping what a Two Kingdom/Pilgrim theology person is trying to say.

Again and again it seems that if you say our task is not to focus on cultural transformation that you’re somehow suggesting that the lives of individual Christians don’t have to be transformed. In addition to their way of thinking it seems to suggest that you somehow leave your faith behind Monday thru Saturday. When I hear or read these suppositions I’m immediately aware of the fact that they’re not grasping the argument.

My friend wrote the following…..

18 February 2013

Social Parasites

(part of an ongoing series of articles called Living in Babylon)

mooch (v.)

mid-15c., "pretend poverty," probably from O.Fr. muchier, mucier "to hide, sulk, conceal, hide away, keep out of sight," of uncertain origin, perhaps from Celtic or Germanic (Liberman prefers the latter, Klein the former). Or the word may be a variant of M.E. mucchen "to hoard, be stingy" (c.1300), probably originally "to keep coins in one's nightcap," from mucche "nightcap," from M.Du. muste "cap, nightcap," ultimately from M.L. almucia, of unknown origin. Sense of "sponge off others" first recorded 1857.

Obviously the connotation of this word has changed a bit and no longer matches the actual denotation. It's a word that's thrown about quite a bit these days, particularly in light of the recent election.
To most people a 'moocher' is someone always on the take, someone who lives by taking from others, something of a social parasite, one who does not contribute, one who only takes and does not give.

17 February 2013

Restorationism, Localism and The Sacralist Chasm

Part 9 of Restorationism

Non-Sacralists have historically been Anti-Nationalistic, and thus Anti-Imperial. Since they have been opposed to the Establishment order, their political affiliations (if any) have historically been to the Left on the Socialist, Anarchic, or Libertarian pole, although few have embraced Libertarianism in the realm of economics. They would argue sin and fallen man's quest for Babel would prohibit this and would also argue the unrestrained Free Market system always leads to monopoly and the wedding of corporate interests with power. Free Markets are fine but only a local level. And in the end that's what Anarchism and many forms of Communism are all about... a lack of government because society is ordered voluntarily at the local level.

Tribalism, History and Old Photos

Last weekend I was struck down by the flu which has afflicted so much of the country. And no, I didn’t get a flu shot.

It had been years since I had the actual flu with the aches and pains and range of symptoms like but yet unlike the cold I get about once a year. It wasn’t fun.

16 February 2013

Restorationism and Political Ideology

(Part 8 of the series on Restorationism)
On a philosophical level and contrary to common perceptions, Socialism is not about the state. Many forms of Socialism are not opposed to property and/or market economics. Socialism can of course be wedded to the state and even in this form, where the means of production are controlled by the state, it can contain many Capitalist elements. It can have functioning markets and private enterprise but these endeavours are conducted within a collectivist framework, with National interests put first, and promoting non-individualist goals.