Archive for September, 2009

Protesting “Capitalism”

Last night I watched Sean Hannity interview two women identified as protesters at the G20 (Group of Twenty) meeting in Pittsburgh.  It was a revealing interview.  Hannity took the approach that the protests were a clash between the good guy forces of capitalism, represented by the G20, and a bad guy cabal of liberalism, represented by the protesters.  The protesters viewed themselves as proud socialists combatting the immoral forces of capitalism.  Neither side understood the issues at hand.  

Hannity’s notion that the G20 represents capitalism is a joke.  According to its own website, the G20 is made up of the Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors of, “important industrialized and developing economies.”  In other words, the G20 is an international gathering of the same Keynesian monetary cranks, including our own “Helicopter” Ben Bernanke,  who’ve done so much to bring the West to the brink of financial collapse.  The governing philosophy of this group is fascism, not capitalism.  

One of the protesters censured capitalism for putting profits ahead of people, citing as an example American health insurance companies that seek profits by denying medical services to patients.  But any resemblance between the American health care industry and capitalism is, as they say, purely coincidental.  With the doctors union, the AMA, limiting the number of medical providers, with governmental regulations and subsidies driving up costs, the health care industry is one of the most socialized, least free segments of the American economy.  In fact, the problems that we’re having with health care in this country can be traced, not to the existence of profit seeking by health care providers, but to the lack of capitalism in the industry.

Hannity also mentioned that the G20 protesters were at times violent and he asked the women if they condemned the acts of vandalism that had taken place in the Pittsburgh marches.  They didn’t.  No Christian can support them in this.  However, one of them raised an interesting question with Hannity, asking him if he condemned the acts of violence committed in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan.  By this question, she apparently was referring to acts of violence committed by the US military in those countries.  Hannity replied that there was no moral equivalence between what the US military did and the actions of the protesters.  He’s right, of course.  By waging wars of aggression on behalf of the US federal government, the American military has committed acts of violence far worse than anything done by the protesters, and those who have committed these acts must bear the guilt for them.  This guilt is shared by those who, like Hannity,  provide intellectual justification for the immoral doctrine of preemptive war.

In the end, neither side understood the issues, for neither side took counsel in God’s word.  The wisdom of this world, whether conservative or liberal,  is foolishness.

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It’s because of  interviews like this that investor Jim Rogers is a capitalist hero.  To the stunned disbelief others on the panel and against all consensus opinion, he makes the case that the US government acted properly last September in allowing Lehman Brothers to go bankrupt.  Furthermore, he argues, the Feds should have allowed market forces to take down all of Wall Street’s incompetent financial  institutions. 

Another featured guest, Julian Pendock, lamely argues that, while some banks needed to fail, we just couldn’t have allowed them to fail all at once.  How many banks should have failed, he doesn’t say.  Over how long a period these bankruptcies should have been allowed to occur, he doesn’t say.  What he does say is that what’s needed is more bank regulation. 


Capitalism is the economic system of the Bible.  And capitalism says that when somebody mismanages his assets, you let him fail,

Then he who had received the one talent came and said, ‘Lord, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you have not sown, and gathering where you have not scattered seed.  And I was afraid, and went and his your talent in the ground.  Look, there you have what is yours.’  

and suffer the consequences of his actions,

But his lord answered and said to him, ‘You wicked and lazy servant, you knew that I reap where I have not sown, and gather where I have not scattered seed.  So you ought to have deposited my money with the bankers, and at my coming I would have received back my own with interest.  So take the talent from him,

 and give the assets those who act prudently,

and give it to him who has ten talents.  

This is God’s justice, both sure and swift,

For to everyone who has, more will be given, and he will have abundance; but from him who does not have, even what he has will be taken away.  And cast the unprofitable servant into the outer darkness. 

although it’s not appreciated by the guilty parties,

There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’  (Matt.25:24-30) 

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