The American Way is not the Kingdom of God

The American Way is not the Kingdom of God November 7, 2015

Just a reminder: Capitalism is about the bottom line and doesn’t give a rip about your “conservative Christian values” except insofar as it can use them to extract money from your wallet.

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Remember that the next time you talk about it as God’s Holy Economic System handed down from Sinai. Its purpose is to sell stuff, not sanctify souls. Like all other manmade systems, it doesn’t do what you want it to do. It does what you designed it to do. Getting angry at it for not “honoring your values” is like getting angry at your PC for crashing when you overtask the CPU. It’s doing what it was built do and you are the sucker for confusing it with the Kingdom of God.


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  • Re_Actor

    Obviously Capital thinks it’s worthwhile to produce gay Doritos. Why? Presumably because there is a market for them. Why is there a market for them now and not in, say, the USA of the 1950s? Was the USA less in thrall to Capital then?

  • Dave G.

    I think capitalism in a godless society doesn’t care. But capitalism is no more guilty of this than anything else: finance, art, music, education, entertainment, culture at large – they’re simply all reflecting the values we as a society are accepting. Christians continue to be split on the approaches: compromise, resist, or join in (as Christians always have struggled). But thinking any other system or approach will somehow correct the trend? Nope. And most i hear who still think capitalism, not socialism, is the better way tend not to be blind to the problems of capitalism in the society we’ve all prepared for our posterity. They simply think the alternatives could be worse. Whether they are or not is for others to discuss, since I’m no economist. But that’s an observation of mine, FWIW.

  • Mark J. Quinn

    Capitalism is the worst economic system ever made…with the exception of everything else ever tried.

  • kathleen s.

    In Socialism you are the slave of the government, in Capitalism we are the slaves of corporations.

    • Kurt 20008

      If government or corporations are not you, then you are a slave. If you are citizen of a socialist democracy or a shareholder in a corporation, then you are not a slave to that particular government or particular corporation.

    • Franken55

      No need to be a slave… at least if Corporations are not in complete control, and if your socialist government is not too ambitious (good luck with that). In either case, a committed Christian knows to Whom his ultimate loyalty belongs.

    • Stu

      The choice between the government collective and the corporate collective are increasingly nonexistent. Big Government and Big Business are one in the same.

      • Marthe Lépine

        It might have to do with human nature… Whatever is big and gains power, it will in the end work in the same way because the nature of such things is the same. The choice is not between big or small government, or between big and smaller business. It seems to me that the answer lies in a balance based on human and social justice principles as refined by Christian principles. But for that to happen people will have to give up tribalism, which seems a hard thing to do for human beings.

    • TomD

      It has been the collusion between Big Government and Big Business that has directly led to our current situation.

      Beginning in the 1980s/90s, many business leaders saw the writing on the wall and decided to go along to get along, rather than continuing to resist. Government was growing, most notably at the federal level, and becoming the dominant force in our society. Business just decided to play along and reap the benefits. That is when things really went south.

      The “American Way” is thwarted by either Big Government or Big Business. When the two act in collusion, the “American Way” has NO chance.

  • Stu

    Given our history of the Cold War where for years there was but a binary choice between scientific socialism (communism) and economic liberalism (capitalism), many now assume that capitalism must be simply the “good” thing.

    Capitalism has nothing to do with free markets or property rights. Never has and never will. This will be a hard and long lesson for our society to learn. In the meantime, enjoy the homosexual chips.

    • LFM

      Yes. I seem to recall that a capitalist is merely someone who re-invests his profits in his business rather than spending them all on conspicuous consumption. The latter is what almost everyone in the pre-capitalist era from aristocrats to rich merchants tended to do, although there were always a handful of entrepreneurs who saw that re-investment would be to their long-term benefit.

      But that has nothing to do with free markets, as you say. The first capitalists did not operate in free markets and had no wish to do so. They worked within a mercantile system in which it was assumed that the creation of wealth was not possible because all things had an intrinsic value; that it was finite, so that allowing freer trade was in effect to allow your competitors to steal from you. It was only when a handful of merchants and producers go *so* rich that they outpace the appetite of their home markets that they began to demand freer trade, or failing that, cheaper raw materials or labour costs so that they could sell to a broader portion of their home market. At around the same time, some of them also began to speculate on each others’ successes and thus to create more options for borrowing money and expanding their businesses – thus creating stock markets.

      Since capitalism and free trade are also not intrinsically connected to the mechanization of industry (any of them could in theory have carried on without the others), the kind of efficiency of production that made it possible to produce goods cheaply AND pay workers a decent wage AND have something left to re-invest to keep the business competitive, was not available until a few clever inventions greatly sped up production and lowered production costs without driving wages into the ground.

      Anyway, you can despise capitalism all you want, but without it, most of us would still be living in smoky hovels without running water or toilets, which is of course entirely possible to do; but far worse than that, we would be watching most of our children die before they reached the age of five. I don’t doubt that there are corrections to make to the financial system in which we now live, and better ways to distribute the bounty created by capitalism, but Marx never forgot that it was capitalism and mechanization that created the wealth that he wanted to spread around. Neither should we.

      Sigh. Not sure how well I’ve remembered my economic history basics, but I think that’s the gist of it.

  • Sue Korlan

    Communism has difficulty with production; capitalism has trouble with distribution. Far better, to my mind, to have sufficient goods and be unable to get them to those who need them than not to have them in the first place.

    • I wouldn’t say that in a world of finite resources.

    • Matt Talbot

      Best would be a system where you have adequate production and just distribution: neither pure capitalism nor pure socialism will give you that result, so the “sweet spot” is somewhere in between those two poles. European social democracy comes closest to that ideal, at least in our current world.

  • Peggy

    Thanks for the warning. I m so stupid. I can’t make a judgment on this myself.

  • michicatholic

    Love the fact that your article about capitalism has a yummy but fake food advertisement right in the middle of it. We get no relief from the advertising and sloganeering that is modern American life. It’s so pervasive that we do it while we yell about having it done to us. LOL

    • Hezekiah Garrett

      That’s actually part of the post…

  • LFM

    Speaking of capitalism, what a bore these people are.

  • Capitalism is not unitary in its values because it’s not totalitarian. It empowers everybody.