I have been browsing on a few forums, including forums that discuss Christian apologetics. Imagine my surprise when I encountered pro-Obama, pro-socialism statements by people who are supposed to be informed about these issues.
Well, I found an article over at Mercator Net, (an Australian web site), which might be useful for Christians who are sympathetic with Obama’s pacifism, redistribution of wealth and creeping fascism. I want to argue that his policies are inconsistent with Christianity.
First of all, the article notes that Obama did gain a significant number of votes from religious Christians.
In 2008, according to CNN exit polls, Obama won forty-three percent of the presidential vote among voters who attend religious services once a week or more, up from Senator John Kerry’s thirty-nine percent in 2004. Obama did especially well with Black and Latino believers. But he also made real inroads among traditional white Catholics, according to a recent article by John Green in First Things.
The article describes Obama’s spending, (which I discussed here), and then comments on the significance of that spending for religious institutions, like churches and charities.
To fund his bold efforts to revive the American economy and expand the welfare state, Obama is proposing to spend a staggering $3.6 trillion in the 2010 fiscal year. Obama’s revolutionary agenda would push federal, state, and local spending to approximately 40 percent of Gross Domestic Product, up from about 33 percent in 2000. It would also put the size of government in the United States within reach of Europe, where government spending currently makes up 46 percent of GDP.
Why is this significant for the vitality of religion in America? A recent study of 33 countries around the world by Anthony Gill and Erik Lundsgaarde, political scientists at the University of Washington, indicates that there is an inverse relationship between state welfare spending and religiosity. Specifically, they found that countries with larger welfare states had markedly lower levels of religious attendance, had higher rates of citizens indicating no religious affiliation whatsoever, and their people took less comfort in religion in general. In their words, “Countries with higher levels of per capita welfare have a proclivity for less religious participation and tend to have higher percentages of non-religious individuals.”
The article goes on to explain the chain of casusation from big government to secularization. Read the whole thing.
But this should be no surprise when you recall Nobel prize winning economist F. A. Hayek’s thesis in his landmark book “The Road to Serfdom”. His thesis is that the natural endpoint to all systems of government that control the means of production is fascism.
Fascism is a left-wing ideology, in which the state substitutes its own values, meanings and purposes for the values, meanings and purposes of individuals. There is no such thing as fascism on the right, because people on the right are free market capitalists who prefer small government and individual liberty.
To see how fascism destroys individual liberty and freedom of conscience, consider:
- Obama’s plan to force hospital workers to perform abortions against their conscience
- Obama’s forcing of taxpayers to pay for abortions here and abroad against their conscience
- Obama’s forcing of taxpayers to pay for embryonic stem cell research against their conscience
- Obama’s forcing of students to attend government run schools instead of private schools of their choice
- Obama’s discrimination against religious schools in his spendulus bill
- Obama’s plan to force some workers to join unions against their will and fun left-wing union political activism against their will
- Obama’s forcing individuals to let Washington run their health-care
I could go on. And on. And on and on and on. But the point is that electing a socialist put us on the road to fascism. As IBD notes, socialists want to force-feed (podcast audio) their worldview onto an unwilling populace by any means – from government-run schools to news media.
I think that Christians need to do a much better job of understanding how our religious liberty hangs on small government and the free market. And remember: this crisis that Obama is “fixing”: it’s the Democrats who caused it, while Republicans tried to stop it.