No, the title doesn’t refer to the coronavirus. I’ll comment on that next week.
This week I’m fascinated that Albert Einstein spent a portion of his life looking for the “secret of the universe.” I will share his own words in a moment.
His quest caused me to ask a similar question:
What are the master keys of life?
As I pondered this question, I remembered Noah. In his amazing journey–written in the Bible some six thousand years ago–lies a nugget of truth that puts these thoughts together.
Noah’s life contained two master keys (or activities). Yours and mine should also.
Save the world then plant your vineyard.
My faith is somewhat restored in the American voter after Joe Biden’s Super Tuesday surge lifted him once again to front-runner status for the Democrat nomination for president. After winning nine states, he leads Bernie Sanders in the delegate count by about sixty delegates (though Joe looks every bit his 77 years of age and appears to be in early stages of dementia).
But Bernie Sanders won four states including nearly one million votes in the big enchilada of California. This despite being an ardent atheist/socialist who hates America, who never really had a real job, became a millionaire through nepotism/capitalism, and whose ideas would crash the American economy and probably lead to a totalitarian government.
How could anybody in their right mind vote for him?
Because socialism has three aces in its deck of cards (but also two jokers).
Socialism’s Three Aces and Two Jokers
I’ve written a few articles this past year on the evils of socialism. I never believed that Marxism/socialism/communism–all fruits of the same atheistic political tree–would become fashionable in the West in my lifetime. After all, this centralized philosophy brutally killed over 100 million people in the 20th century, imprisoned billions behind an Iron/Bamboo Curtain and led to misery everywhere it was tried.
Lee Edwards of the Heritage Foundation points out how India, Israel and the United Kingdom also dabbled in socialist waters before seeing the light.
Here’s his summary in Three Nations That Tried Socialism and Rejected It:
“As we have seen from our examination of Israel, India, and the United Kingdom, the economic system that works best for the greatest number is not socialism with its central controls, Utopian promises, and OPM (other people’s money), but the free-market system with its emphasis on competition and entrepreneurship. All three countries tried socialism for decades, and all three finally rejected it for the simplest of reasons—it doesn’t work.”
“Socialism is guilty of a fatal conceit: It believes its system can make better decisions for the people than they can for themselves. It is the end-product of a 19th-century prophet whose prophecies (such as the inevitable disappearance of the middle class) have been proven wrong time and again.”
“According to the World Bank, more than 1 billion people have lifted themselves out of poverty in the past 25 years, ‘one of the greatest human achievements of our time.’ Of those billion, approximately 731 million are Chinese, and 168 million Indians.”
“The main driver of this uplift from poverty has been the globalization of the international trading system. China owes most of its success to the trade freedom offered by the U.S. and the rest of the world.”
“The latest edition of Index of Economic Freedom from The Heritage Foundation confirms the global trend toward economic freedom: Economies rated ‘free, or mostly free’ enjoy incomes that are more than five times higher than the incomes of ‘repressed economies’ such as those of North Korea, Venezuela, and Cuba.”
“Whether we are talking about the actions of an agricultural country of 1.3 billion, or the nation that sparked the industrial revolution, or a small Middle Eastern country populated by some of the smartest people in the world, capitalism tops socialism every time.”
If what Edwards says is true (and I agree), then why are millions of Americans in 2020, especially younger Americans, voting for their own demise?
Because socialism has “three aces” in its deck of cards that make it very attractive.
Ace #1 – Fallen human nature
Socialism appeals enticingly to our fallen nature which tends to put ourselves first and finds it natural to take the easy road over that of self-control and hard work. In our “flesh,” we want as much “free stuff” as we can get–which remains the huge draw of Bernie’s message. Free healthcare. Free college. Free housing. Free everything!
Fallen, non-redeemed human beings want someone else to take care of them–even if they lose their own self-respect and everything they possess. Me-first handouts are the road most desired.
Ace #2 – Unthinking Citizens
One of the greatest Satanic achievements in the past two generations has been abysmal decline of both morals and public education. In much of the Western World, secular activists have successfully removed the Bible and character virtues from the government schools, refused to teach civics and history accurately, and succeeded in loading many universities with Marxist professors.
Today’s youth are voting for socialists in droves because they are ignorant of both reality and history. The children of the Internet–with vast resources of learning available to them–have become the stupidest generation in memory–while mesmerized with self on their hand-held machines.
Samuel Adams promised the American nation three hundred years ago that if “virtue and knowledge are diffused among the people they will never be enslaved. This will be their security.”
Today virtue is out of style and knowledge of right and wrong on the wane. Freedom will expire with it if we don’t start thinking again.
Ace #3 – Deficit Spending
It’s easy to blame the Fall and progressive education for the seduction of socialism. But deficit spending?
Yes–by politicians in both parties and all of us citizens who have let our nation roll up 23 trillion dollars in debt. We gaze blankly at that staggering total, hear Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren talk about adding scores of trillions more–and don’t blink an eye. That “invisible” debt hasn’t hurt us yet (we think), so why not trillions more?
That’s what unthinking and inexperienced people believe.
But it’s a lie–a facade. The debt will catch up to us. And the more of it, the faster and more devastating comes the crash.
Thus, with the aces of human depravity, ignorance, and debt amnesia in his deck of political cards, Bernie Sanders is succeeding at bluffing a portion of the American electorate toward socialism.
Rep. Liz Cheney points out this philosophy will lead to the death of freedom:
“We know that socialism extinguishes freedom, we know that socialism steals power from the people, we know that socialism creates authoritarianism. It has to create authoritarianism, because as [former British Prime Minister] Margaret Thatcher said, socialists cannot let people choose, because if the socialists let people choose, they know the people won’t choose socialism.”
Last week Vice President Mike Pence told the truth about socialism to a cheering crowd at the C-PAC gathering in Washington D.C.:
“Socialism has failed everywhere it has been tried, in every era in every continent. Freedom works. It was freedom and not socialism that ended slavery, ended two world wars, [and] has made America a beacon of hope.”
Though the socialist movement contains three attractive aces, it also features two jokers that do not enhance its hand–Sanders and Warren. Bernie is angry and Warren is mean-spirited. Both lie about their past, their programs, and remain power-hungry politicians that most American voters are rejecting at the polls in 2020.
But the temperature of Sanders/Warren socialism is rising and has given America a fever. What happens in the future when a young, “attractive” socialist leads this insidious parade?
I hope we don’t find out and here’s what we must do.
We need to re-evangelize the American nation to combat selfish human nature. We must push for school choice in education to elevate good teaching and God’s truth. And we must vote for courageous civic leaders that have the guts to attack the deficit.
We desperately need God back at the center of our national life. Jesus Christ alone possesses the true vaccine for the virus of socialism–revival in His Name and through his power.
As Bernie Sanders becomes the front-runner in the presidential race and the Democratic Party appears to be morphing into the “Socialist Workers Guild,” it might be helpful to examine one of the extreme ideas that has emerged from those precincts.
It’s the notion that today’s American citizens should pay reparations (money) to all those descended from slaves.
I have news for the unthinking: Everyone’s ancestors were once slaves.
So, where do you begin–to be “fair?”
Everybody’s Ancestors Were Slaves
Yesterday Bill O’Reilly shared on his podcast (I recommend you sign up for it at billoreilly.com) that for the first time in his life he needs to vocally resist the ideas of the current Democratic Party because they would be disastrous for America.
Those ideas include open borders, the Green New Deal, socialism, killing babies after birth, climate change hysteria, Medicare for All, forcing LBGTQ norms on society, and a host of other radical measures.
Reparations for slavery is one of their absurdly hurtful proposals.
Megan Henney of Fox Business describes the issue (June 20, 2019):
“As the 2020 race begins to heat up, some of the biggest talking points and policy debates are beginning to come into focus. That includes the discussion of reparations for the descendants of slaves in the U.S., a policy that’s been addressed by several Democratic presidential hopefuls – a marked turn from previous election cycles. Both Hillary Clinton the 2016 Democratic nominee and former President Barack Obama opposed reparations.”
“Although critics argue that reparations are impractical to calculate how to fairly distribute, a new paper published in the Social Science Quarterly estimated it could cost between $5.9 trillion and $14.2 trillion ($150,000-$300,000 to every African-American). The author of the paper calculated that number based on the number of hours all slaves worked in the U.S. from when the country was officially established in 1776.”
Henney quotes some former and current Democratic candidates on reparations:
Cory Booker: “Our country is not truly free from the historically rooted and hideous legacy of slavery. I believe right now, today, we have a historic opportunity to break the silence, to speak to the ugly past and talk constructively about how we will move this nation forward.”
Booker has introduced a bill in the Senate that calls for a “study of reparations.”
Elizabeth Warren is one of the 12 co-sponsors of the Senate bill. She says, “We must confront the dark history of slavery and government-sanctioned discrimination in this country that has had many consequences including undermining the ability of black families to build wealth in America for generations,”
Another co-sponsor is Kamala Harris:
“When you are talking about the years and years and years of trauma that were experienced because of slavery, because of Jim Crow and because of all that we have seen in terms of institutional and legal discrimination and racism, this is very real and it needs to be studied. We need to look at exactly how the response should be played out.”
Julian Castro, former Housing and Urban Development Secretary and San Antonio mayor was one of the first presidential candidates to say he would consider reparations for black people in the U.S.
“I’ve long believed the country should consider reparations because of the atrocity of slavery. I also believe that we’re never going to fully heal as a country from the racial divide until we’ve addressed the tremendous wrong that was done with slavery.”
Bernie Sanders also co-sponsored Booker’s bill but has some concerns.
“I think what we have got to do is pay attention to distressed communities: black communities, Latino communities, and white communities, and as president, I pledge to do that…and I think there are better ways to do that than just writing out a check.”
Only former vice president Joe Biden has not endorsed reparations in the Booker “study” bill.
I wouldn’t be surprised to see the following recommendation in the 2020 Democratic presidential platform this summer:
Every non-black in American needs to pay up for slavery.
Could any public policy be more absurd or expensive than that? (Unfortunately, that answer is yes but I digress.)
Have we so lost our common sense in the West that we forget that ALL our ancestors were once slaves to other nations?
- During the Roman Empire, half of its citizens were slaves–for nearly one thousand years. Should we send a bill to Italy?
- China and Mongolia made each other slaves for centuries–and finally built the Great Wall of China over the conflict (in which 2 million slaves died during its construction). Should Ulaanbaatar write Beijing a check?
- European nations took turns being the slaves for centuries. The Vikings made slaves of the Celts. The Visigoths enslaved the Slavs. Come to think of it, my German ancestors were slaves of the Goths for hundreds of years. Should I appeal to Angela Merkel for a reparations check?
- In the 20th century, the USSR enslaved numerous nations and the Imperial Japanese raped and oppressed the Chinese for a decade. Time to make that right with money?
As ugly as slavery is, during the seven thousand years of human history, more people have served as slaves of another culture than enjoyed the blessings of freedom. In some centuries they were the conquerors and in others the conquered.
Who should be paid? How far back should we go? What if you are half-slave? Or one-tenth?
We have been told by the New York Times via the “1619 Project” that America was founded on slavery. That was 400 years or ten generations ago.
Thank God a wiser group has countered their propaganda. The Woodson Center announced recently sponsorship of “1776,” a collection of essays and other material mostly written by black scholars and community and business leaders.
Their goal is to tell “the complete history of America and black Americans from 1776 to present.”
But not ask for money.
Coleman Hughes, an undergraduate student at Columbia University, is one of the contributors to “1776.” He says, ““Today, we are challenging that  false narrative. Any argument that says the institution of slavery is what makes America unique must grapple with the fact that slavery was practiced in almost every society on earth until just a few centuries ago, as well as the fact that most of those societies have done far less to acknowledge and atone for it.”
“To point to America’s worst sins,” Hughes said, “is to point out what is least unique about us.”
And you can’t pay for past sins.
God’s Word says it best:
“‘Doesn’t the child pay for the parent’s sins?’ No! For if the child does what is just and right and keeps my decrees, that child will surely live. The person who sins is the one who will die. The child will not be punished for the parent’s sins, and the parent will not be punished for the child’s sins.”
“Righteous people will be rewarded for their own righteous behavior, and wicked people will be punished for their own wickedness. But if wicked people turn away from all their sins and begin to obey my decrees and do what is just and right, they will surely live and not die” (Ezekiel 18:19-21).
In a book I co-authored this past summer about the life of Dr. Corinthia Boone, she recalls that her grandparents, who were children of freed slaves (just one generation removed), never demanded “a hand-out, just a hand up.”
Let’s follow their example–through the love of Jesus Christ.
Everyone’s ancestors were slaves.
Let’s leave the past behind–and offer a helping hand to everybody who needs one.