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Archive for December, 2009

Here’s Ron Paul’s Tuesday Dec. 15 appearance on CNBC. He discusses the current financial crisis and the role the Federal Reserve has played in bringing it about. One of the key problems with the Fed is that it, rather than the market, is entrusted with setting interest rates. Paul comments at about the 3:30 mark that in a sound economy, capital for economic growth should come through savings, but the Fed’s artificially low interest rates, which are meant as a stimulus to the economy, actually hinder it because low interest rates discourage savings and healthy capital formation.
 

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more about “Road to Recovery – CNBC.com“, posted with vodpod

 

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Augustine the Tree Hugger

While reading Augustine’s Confessions, I came across a passage where he discussed his beliefs while an adherant of Manichaeism.  The Manichaeans emphasized the the immanence of God, that is, they believed the whole universe, every rock, every tree, every blade of grass was permeated by God.  For someone who holds this position, it’s only logical to see any act of farming or commercial development a great evil and affront to the divine nature. 

While  a  Manichaean, Augustine believed the mere act of plucking a fig resulted in the weeping of both the fruit and its mother tree.  Looking back many years later as a Christian, he described his earlier beliefs as,  “nonsense,” stating,

And I believed (wretch that I was) that more mercy was to be shown to the fruits of the earth, than to men for whose use they were created.

As a Manichaean, Augustine held to a superstitious reverence for the earth and its fruits.  As a Christian, he came to understand that the earth and all its fruits were given to men by God, that the earth was made for man, not man for the earth. 

What is striking about this passage is how much our modern environmentalists resemble the Manichaeans.  The folks meeting in Copenhagen all seem to think that the good of mankind ought to be subordinated to holy mother earth and are prepared to impose this position with draconian laws and regulations.  And like the Manichaeans, their errors can be traced to their ignorance or outright rejection of what God has said about creation and man’s relationship to it.  They should take a cue from Augustine who came to his senses sixteen hundred years ago.

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