I have seen a MEME on Facebook with Thomas Sowell explaining that most of the left’s arguments can be destroyed by asking the following three questions:
1) Compared to what?
2) At what cost?
3) What hard evidence do you have?
I suggest that you all listen to the arguments from the left on any subject, and ask yourself these three questions. I did this and found that it really does work a lot of the time especially when the left starts talking about economics.
Astonishingly over the same period, my church was giving a message series on being unsatisfied in life. Many of us at some point are dissatisfied with our house, car, spouse, children, government, etc. I started thinking about how these two things work together. I cannot take all the credit for this myself, so I have to give a hat-tip to my Pastor, Tommy Politz of Hillside Christian Church. I would absolutely suggest going to www.hillsidewired.com and listening to some of the pod-casts of his brilliant and extraordinary messages.
What struck me about these two messages was how we only become dissatisfied with something in life when we compare it something else. Tommy read the example from the Bible about the man who hired day laborers to work his vineyard for the day, but then near the end of the workday he hired more men. When he paid the men their wages, they all got the same amount of pay. Obviously, the men who worked all day were upset that they received the same wage as the men who worked only an hour, but the landowner made the men realize that they see dissatisfaction in comparison. Had he not hired the men later in the day, the original workers would have been satisfied with the agreed upon amount. Tommy goes on to tell us that we should not be dissatisfied with what God has blessed us with because if we show dissatisfaction with what we have then we are in essence disagreeing with God’s decision on allocation of his blessings.
We know that life is unfair, and no matter how fair we try to make it, it will never be equitable for everyone, but that does not stop the socialist progressives from attempting it. We see this most notably in the tax code. Progressive rate structures, means-tested deductions, and tax-credits are all designed to take the property of the wealthy and distribute it more equitably to the poor. The only problem is that we never ask the question that Thomas Sowell asks, “Compared to what?” The poorest of the poor in America tower economically over entire populations of people in the Third World. Even without Obamacare rarely did the poor receive better medical care than most of the men, women, and children in Africa, Asia, and South America. Unemployment, disability, social security, Medicare and Medicaid, free cell phones, help with electricity bills, food stamps, minimum wage laws, and so much more are all things given to the poor in America that the rest of the world could only dream of having.
One final thing that Tommy taught me about being unsatisfied is something that we all know fundamentally. Most of us, at some point in time, have gone out and bought a new car, a new house, or even a new TV. We usually enjoy it for a while, but then get used to it. We grow into our houses or start to notice the little rattles of the car, or how the TV remote does not have all the buttons on it that it should. So what do we do? We start thinking about a new one – A bigger house, a more expensive car, or a TV with all the bells and whistles. The thing is that in order to be satisfied we have to understand that we will always be dissatisfied. We get the bigger house, the better car, a raise at work, etc. but then we start looking for the next thing that will make us happy. I dare say that Bill Gates, the richest man in the world, still has some level of dissatisfaction in his life – its human nature and he would be even odder than he already is if he did not.
This, to me, is the crux of all the problems facing us today. Americans find themselves at the top of the World’s socio-economic pyramid, but we still find ways to complain about our dissatisfaction with things in life. If we could only learn to be more satisfied with the blessings of liberty and prosperity that God has blessed the people of this nation with then perhaps we could finally learn to stop the class warfare. God has granted us all blessings and abilities through his own judgment. For some, that means being a great athlete or a genius businessman, while for others it means being a great carpenter or teacher, but who are we to argue with the God’s decisions, and who are we to think we can make things equal in a world designed for inequity?