2008 Election: Banking on … ?

A World in Turmoil

While world economies are in turmoil and health care costs and quality have become problematic for many.  While natural disasters are on the rise and many are worried about global warming.  While the supply, demand and costs of energy create concern because of our dependence upon energy.  While we live in this world we are faced with these things and we will be faced with more as life goes on…

In September 2008 everyone looked sideways at the bank or the financial institution holding their retirement hoping it wasn’t going to go belly up.   Everyone felt a little insecure having placed the capital for their futures in financial institutions that were dealing in “securities” (the term security became an oxymoron).  Here in 2008 in the month of October facing all these difficulties and uncertainties we find ourselves in the midst of elections for the leaders of our nation.  The debates quickly refocused on financial issues and everyone was asking what the candidates’ plans and priorities were.  People are hoping to pick a candidate with a plan they can “bank” on, pardon the pun.  But, ultimately a plan is a plan and will have to be flexible as issues and road blocks arise and priorities change.  The formation of the plan and how it will eventually be played out is based upon the candidates view of the world.

It is easy to miss that our current financial problem was caused by world views.  There were two world views, one from each party, that brought about our current state of financial affairs.  The first view is that the construction of a uniformly improved social environment will create better people and a better world.  This view fostered the Community Reinvestment Act requiring banks to make sub-prime loans which was signed under Carter but not enforced until more than a decade later.  The second view is that a free market where people have more opportunities and are rewarded for their effort will create better people and a better world.  This view fostered the Financial Services Modernization Act which removed restrictions put in place after the great depression that kept financial institutions from doing business in each others markets.  The one created a bubble of irresponsibility and the other allowed the impact of the bursting bubble to spread into every area of our economy.

What is the Value of a World View?

It was a world view that brought about fascism and the holocaust, it was a world view that brought about the end of slavery.  It was a world view that brought about the Inquisition and a world view that brought about the American Revolution.  Many times we don’t think about moral or philosophical issues yet these shape our world view and ultimately drive the perspectives and decisions we make.  A world view may be more dangerous than economic meltdown, tsunamis, ice ages, polar ice caps melting or energy shortages.  Yet many times we say,  “tell me what you are going to do and if it sounds good, not even right mind you … just good, then I will vote for you.”

“Thoroughly worldly people never understand even the world; they rely altogether on a few cynical maxims which are not true.” – G. K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy

People say things, candidates make statements and if it sounds right on the surface we may not want to look deeper, to consider the ramifications.  We may not want to ask the question, “If I build off that view where does it lead?”  We may not want to look deeply at justifications and reasons.  Could it be that we fear being wrong?  Could it be that any excuse that validates our hope that we may be OK we jump on board with and don’t want to look deeper for fear not only that the view may be wrong but that we will have lost an excuse and have to face the fact that not only is our view wrong but that we are inherently wrong and sinful?  When a man trusts in men and mankind he is likely to fall because mankind is made up of men that have a propensity to fall.

What then must we bank on?  Can we trust that if people grow up in good environments that the world will be better or will they just feel a greater sense of entitlement?  Can we trust that if people have opportunities and rewards they will be motivated and the world will be better or will the rewards themselves become the priority?  Both the view espousing a social setting and the view of opportunity and reward place faith in mankind.  We must fight for something greater than this.  We must fight for a moral high ground.

We may dismiss the moral issue of abortion as being a side bar issue but do we really think that God consideres it a side bar issue?  We may dismiss the moral issue of giving special rights to behavioral groups such as homosexuals but does God consider it unimportant?  We may not think it is expedient to be concerned about the definition of the family and the desire of the Christian family to see their children grow up in a moral and Godly environment but is God indifferent?  If we support candidates with views in opposition to God’s view of the value of the individual life over quality of life or views which legitimize immoral behavior and redefine the family can we expect God not to have any issues with us?  Are we morrally inculpable for the positions and actions taken by the leaders we support?  (check out 1 Chronicles 21)  The moral and philosophical postions of our leaders do matter.

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About Devin Adint
I have always had many interests; technology, science, philosophy, theology, politics, history, etc... Currently, life for the past twelve years has placed me in the area of technology fulfilling roles in System Administration and Architecture. But I have always been involved in the local church and enjoy researching and discussing issues of theology, philosophy, history and politics...

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