Did God create evil?

Over at Tough Questions Answered, I found an answer to a question I get all the time:

Now here is a question that many people struggle with.  Here is how the argument generally goes:

  1. God is the Author of everything.
  2. Evil is something.
  3. Therefore, God is the Author of evil.

This is a valid syllogism, meaning that if premises 1 and 2 are correct, then the conclusion follows.

Looking at premise 1, is God the author of everything?  Well, if he isn’t, then we don’t have a sovereign creator, but that’s what the Bible teaches.  We can’t reject this premise.

Looking at premise 2, if we deny that evil exists, then we deny a basic truth about reality.  There clearly is evil in the world and we all know it.  To deny the existence of evil would be to deny a fundamental aspect of life.

Are we stuck?  Not exactly.

Well, go on over there and see what the answer is, I’m not going to tell you.

Can God make a rock so big he can’t lift it?

Over at Tough Questions Answered, I notice they are putting out a lot of quality work. But they also have some answers for beginners. I am going to be posting two of their beginner answers today, just to make sure we can all answer them. Here is the first question they answered: “Why can’t God make a rock so big he can’t lift it”

This is a common question that is asked by those who misunderstand the nature of God’s omnipotence.  Another humorous way of asking this question is: Can God make a sandwich so big he can’t eat it?  (I owe that jewel to my friend Greg).

You’ll have to go over there for the answer, I’m not telling!

UPDATE: My answer is actually a little different than their answer. My answer would be that a rock that can’t be lifted is self-contradictory. All objects that have mass can be lifted, by definition. So what the questioner is really asking is something like this: “Can God make a married bachelor?” or “Can God make a round square?”. God’s power does not allow him to perform self-contradictory things. That is not a limit on his power – self-contradictory things are nonsense, and no one can do nonsense.

Obama’s cap-and-trade plan is a carbon tax that hurts consumers

House Republican Leader John Boehner
House Republican Leader John Boehner

John Boehner’s blog, notes that his concerns about Obama’s cap and trade bill are now being echoed in the mainstream media.

Investor’s Business Daily explains:

Tax-challenged Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and White House Budget Director Peter Orszag went to Capitol Hill on Tuesday to defend a federal budget that assumes $650 billion in revenue from a cap-and-trade carbon emissions scheme…

“The president’s budget increases taxes on every American, and does so during a recession,” pointed out Rep. Dave Camp, R-Mich., ranking member on Ways and Means. “And that means higher prices for Americans for food, for gas, for electricity, and in a state like Michigan for home heating — pretty much everything they buy.”

This carbon tax will be paid by energy companies, manufacturers and public utilities and will be passed on to consumers. Camp’s Michigan gets 60% of its electricity from coal. But Obama’s plan has always been to make fossil fuels so expensive that boondoggles like wind and solar suddenly look competitive.

The article concludes:

Obama’s cap-and-trade budget is a recipe for permanent recession. An analysis by the George C. Marshall Institute estimates GDP losses of as much as 3% in 2015 and as much as 10% in 2050 as a result of this measure.

The Detroit News reports that:

President Barack Obama’s proposed cap-and-trade system on greenhouse gas emissions is a giant economic dagger aimed at the nation’s heartland — particularly Michigan. It is a multibillion-dollar tax hike on everything that Michigan does, including making things, driving cars and burning coal.

Let me be clear. Obama intends to raise taxes on energy producers. These energy producers will pass these tax hikes onto consumers. If the prices rise too high, Obama may fix prices lower which would cause a shortage. A shortage would potentially cause gas lines and power rationing. If things get worse, it could lead to the nationalizing of the energy producing companies.

UPDATE: On John Lott’s blog, he links to this Reuters story in which Hillary Clinton tells the European Parliament: “Never waste a good crisis … Don’t waste it when it can have a very positive impact on climate change and energy security”. This quotation echoes Rahm Emanuel: “Never Allow a Crisis to Go to Waste”. This might explain why Democrats are so bold about having government take control of the free market.

Amendments to block coerced abortions and U.N. global taxes fail

Senator James Inhofe
Senator James Inhofe

I found these stories on James Inhofe’s blog. First, an amendment to the 410 billion dollar omnibus (son of porkulus) that would have prohibited US-taxpayer funds being used by the UN for coerced abortions has been voted down by the Democrats.

Inhofe’s first statement reads:

The amendment would have required that amounts appropriated for the United Nations Population Fund are not used by organizations that support coercive abortion or involuntary sterilization. I am strongly opposed to the use of taxpayer dollars for these purposes and for these organizations. Taxpayers should not be forced to subsidize abortion in the United States or abroad.

Second, another omnibus amendment to prevent US-taxpayer funds being used by the UN to implement global tax schemes has also failed.

Inhofe’s second statement reads:

My amendment to the FY’09 omnibus appropriations bill would have reinstated this important U.S. policy and ensured that officials at the U.N. and other international bureaucracies who receive generous funding from U.S. taxpayers do not pursue or implement policies of international taxes on U.S. taxpayers.

Well, I guess the Democrats think that the UN needs that money more than ordinary US taxpayers, anyway.

TCF Bank returns TARP money, rejects government interference in business

Representative Michele Bachmann
Representative Michele Bachmann

On Michele Bachmann’s blog, she has posted twice about banks that are returning TARP bailout money, rather than accept government control of their business. Michele voted against the TARP bill, which redistributed 700 billion dollars from the honest/productive sector of the economy to the irresponsible/fraudulent sector.

Here is an except from her first post:

The Minneapolis Star Tribune reported yesterday that TFC Financial Corp. has joined Northern Trust and Iberiabank Corp. as financial institutions who are staying clear of the government’s Troubled Asset Relief Program.

The way TCF Chief Executive Bill Cooper views it:

“I don’t want to be part of the new regulatory regime that’s growing up around TARP. Congress is now talking about putting their oar in the water on just about everything we do. That puts us at a competitive disadvantage.”

A more recent post links to a Fox News story on TCF bank. According to the TCF Bank CEO, TCF never made any subprime loans, and therefore they do not need a bailout. Although they were going to take the money, they decided to return it, because they refused to yield their autonomy to the federal government.

Watch the 5-minute clip: (need I mention that Megyn Kelly does the interview?)

Now, for those of you who have read F.A. Hayek’s “The Road to Serfdom”, you know that all our liberties, including our precious freedom of religious expression, hangs on the separation between government and the means of production. If the government controls the means by which you earn your living, then the government controls you.

A summary of the Road to Serfdom is here.

…integrating Christian faith and knowledge in the public square

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