Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Shut Up Palin and Moralists! GREED IS GOOD


So, two follow-ups to my post of this morning that exposed Bo Snerdley of the Rush Limbaugh program to be a truly ignorant illiterate.  (You can read that here.)

First, I understand from increasingly addictive and necessary Cornell law professor William Jacobson that today Limbaugh points out Romney is saying that his experience as CEO of BAIN Capital is like what President Obama did with General Motors.  So if you are Rush Limbaugh it is ok today to attack Romney.  Just as long as us “mind numbed robots” get the proper memo to know what we are supposed to think.  Sheesh.

Secondly, a former pro-Palinista blogger who I respect, admire and often agree with ( writes that I am full of crap. Or something.  He says specifically:

(to those who would say) “Well, capitalism is all well and good, but you still have to temper it with morality.”  I want those purveyors of this opinion to pay closest attention to me, as I tell them that they’re shoveling manure.  Capitalism reflects a system of morality, and if you don’t share it, fine, but do not pretend that it means something else.  Do not take “capitalism” and twist the label to fit what is merely modified socialism.  There is nothing wrong with profits, whether large or small, nor any size in between, provided only this:  Those making profits do so by their own efforts and with their own wealth and property.  That’s the morality of capitalism.  It’s a morality I endorse entirely, and unreservedly.  Do not offer to me that capitalism must be “tempered” by something.  To temper a thing is to alter its fundamental structure.

My response?  (You’ll enjoy this.)

It is just dishonest to say Gingrich is arguing from a socialist mindset. He has NEVER advocated government interference with business. HE IS arguing for the morality of how profits are made.

SarahPalinAmericaByHEARTbookcvr You damn Sarah Palin as she made the EXACT same point against in her speeches in Alaska running for Governor.  Just because a company can screw the residents of Alaska doesn’t make it right.

You err in assuming that advocating responsible capitalism is the same as arguing for government interference. That is naive and certainly dangerous.

As I point out in my piece (here the REASON we have government encroachment is because of IRRESPONSIBLE capitalism. There is no need for a law to protect workers pensions if all employers are protecting those funds that the employees earned. However, with one greedy capitalist, society enacts a law to try and protect those workers AS IT SHOULD.

When government already controls these functions through socialism or communism, you still get greed – but now in different (multiple) ways that are far inferior.

Adams, de Tocqueville, Jefferson, Monroe ALL have said that FREEDOM doesn’t work if people do NOT self-regulate themselves.

Capitalism is NOT any more or less moral than dating or dieting.  It is a system that can amplify the heart of it’s operator for bad or for good. There is a great story about Smith Wigglesworth the famous preacher who taught hellfire and brimstone sermons against sins. A group at a tavern wanted to tease him and waved money in front of him while taunting him to take it. Wigglesworth didn’t hesitate and grabbed. This shocked the gathering of sinners and they protested, “Smithy! Don’t you know that money came from drinking and gambling?” Wigglesworth didn’t hesitate a moment and said, “This money has served the devil too long. time for it serve God..”

Money in Bible You may like to divorce the philosophy or system of capitalism from God’s law but if you do – you are then serving Mammon. That is not just a philosophy but an actual demonic god. Which means you are motivated by selfish greed, rather than amassing that to A) provide a product or service beneficial to someone or B) to use your wealth to the betterment of society.

The problem with your analysis is that you stop at your devotion to capitalism only in contrast to socialism or communism. Freedom loving Patriotic Christian people understand that society and our country will NOT be helped by those whose sole goal is to amass wealth for themselves. Look at the Saudi Princes who conduct free market capitalism for themselves but use their capital to ONLY gratify themselves. They have to have a brutal police force and suspend “freedom” for the uneducated masses who are NOT served by a new 80 story Ritz Carlton shaped like a camel. They are free to do it – but “capitalism” used to only on selfish purposes creates anger and deprives the society of a greater good from those who would have started micro-capital lending built products and services that might not have garnered the most profit.

As an avowed conservative, free market CONSTITUTIONAL capitalist, I’m not buying what you think I should shovel.  Not only will you convince people like me that ANYTHING that happens in any boardroom is sacrosanct under the capitalism sacraments you seem to worship, you risk the entire conservative brand name suggesting capitalism is inherently “good” regardless of how it is conducted.  God’s law is replete with examples of God’s opinion about how capitalism works including:

The people will curse him who withholds grain,
But blessing will be on the head of him who sells
- Proverbs 11:26

For non-bible scholars “curse” is bad.  It is also a negative force that causes death in things – not just “sticks and stones.” In other words, someone has grain. Capitalism says they can do whatever they want with it. It is theirs.  God explains that it is a certainty that the people will curse them.  Curses cause bad things to happen.  (If you are an atheist you won’t believe this.  But you might want to Google the statistical differences in those that pray to God and read the bible every day versus those who don’t to understand that ‘blessings and curses’ are real.) 

Note also GOD commands a blessing (which causes good things to happen) on those who sell it.  Now God doesn’t address at what price to sell it here.  There are other scriptures relating to usury and extortion.  But it is clear.  God believes there is a morality involved in HOW capitalism is conducted.

I’m surprised you are this far distant from Palin’s views who herself said last night on Fox Business that the BAIN questioning was perfectly acceptable.

In my opinion it is not only acceptable, it is necessary.


mmmm, isn't capitalism just a tool? The use of which depends on the morality of the user? I know that's a little simplistic, but like your example of the preacher taking the money from the gamblers & drinkers, the money itself was neither bad nor good, it depended on what use it gets put to.

Another little quibble, although you were right as far as where you went, but since government is also just a tool that can and is being twisted...It's been a long time since we've seen laws made that weren't designed to benefit the few.(such as Solyndra etc. Or like the new CARB rulings on diesel trucks here in California....the rules benefit the larger truck firms by putting the smaller guys out of guess who wants them?) and it's not just a Left failing either, but I'm not sure how many laws end up being "moral" either. If you do a "good" for a "bad" reason(or vice versa)...what does that make the result?

Maybe that's the question you're asking, but as far as BAIN is concerned is it a question of whether Bain did the right and moral thing? Sometimes companies do have to lay folks off to save the company & the remaining jobs. Or(& not forgiving it here) what was necessary in the business, economic, and government climate we now have? Such as the pension mess. Most companies are underfunded in their pension plans. Those that try to be funded enough are put at a disadvantage by the rest. So do they do the "right" thing and fully fund their pension plan, and subsequently be put out of business since their competitors are using the monies for something else(& yes, government lets them get away with it...)but if they can stay in business by not properly funding their pension plans, there's a lot of jobs being "saved" right there...

Better yet, how do you explain to folks that the tools of capitalism and government only work with a moral people, especally when so many folks don't understand morality. It's what makes them feel pious, not what is truly right or wrong, so...

I'll stop rambling now, but your posts have made me think... I'm not happy with the tone of how this whole mess came down, but I'm not sure who, or what will explain to folks why or how capitalism works, but I am sure the left wants to say it doesn't(see understanding morality...)

Good points all. I just posted a review of the Bain Documentary which repeats SOME of what you said, including the 4 things a Business Person knows that the general public will never get.

THAT is the big problem with this issue. Capitalism is WAY too complex to explain to the masses. (or convince them that it's ok for a company to shut down jobs just to make more money). We will NEVER win that battle in a general election. Palin didn't make that argument in Alaska and Reagan didn't in his election.

If Newt would catch fire, he's actually done a BRILLIANT thing. He can be PRO-Free Enterprise while not allowing Obama to paint him with his OWS strategy that are SURE will work against Romney. (And after seeing and thinking about the BAIN documentary I'm convinced of it).

But we have to admit (like Freddie Mac, Jon Corzine at MF Global, Enron and Worldcom) capitalism without character is NOT a conservative position IMO.

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