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This Month's Scripture Verse:

But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people.
2 Timothy 3:1-5

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Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Comments Which Conservatives Block From Their Blogs For August 21, 2019

Aug 17

To R. Scott Clark and his blogpost that quotes Calvin saying that using musical instruments in worship is a thing of the Old Testament past. This appeared in Heidelblog.

It is a tragic, theological irony that those who are so-called champions of salvation by faith can so dogmatically lay down such picayune laws that have no basis in the New Testament. Such is one of the results of the regulative principle.
What is even more tragically ironic is that such modern day champions not only claim that musical instruments not be used in worship because it is so Old Testament, but that publicly expressed support for social justice is legalistic and thus wrong.

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To Bradley Birzer and his blogpost warning against the influence of public opinion and how relying on it  can lead to totalitarianism. That is because public opinion can easily be manipulated. This appeared in the Imaginative Conservative blog.

Perhaps the problem being identified by Birzer in the above article is that unless democracy is defined as a state of being, society and state is at risk of eventually embracing totalitarianism.
What is meant by defining democracy as a state of being? It means an enthusiastic sharing of society and the state with others as equals. Granted that such a defining of democracy comes out of cultural Marxism, its root comes from Jefferson's 1801 inaugural address when he warned against  allowing the rule of the majority to oppress any group(s). Unfortunately, Jefferson was better at speaking against such oppression than avoiding it in practice.
Here we should note that we have two main secular sources of influence in the U.S. The first is the market place and the second is our democracy. We learn to compete and conquer from the market place while we learn egalitarianism from democracy. And which secular influence is given priority by society is displayed by whether we treat our democracy as a place to conquer opposing groups and ideas or we use the market place to share wealth in a manner that approaches, but does not reach, egalitarian sharing. In the former scenario, the market place is counted as being most important to the people and in the latter, democracy is counted as being most important to the people. Another way to put it is to say whether wealth is more important to a society than freedom or vice-versa. Martin Luther King Jr's way of saying this that we will either have a 'thing-oriented society,' or a 'person-oriented society.'
What Birzer describes as the manipulation of public opinion to control the outcome shows that the market place is the most important secular influence on society. To reverse that does not include choosing the "right" set of elites to be in control, but to embrace enough of Cultural Marxism especially as it pertains to democracy. Any other approach, especially those that are taken in the name of the common good, will only result in a state and society that is approaching totalitarianism.

Birzer's 3 ways by which public opinion can be influenced only recognizes selecting the "right" procedure to avoid totalitarianism and that leaves out defining democracy as a state of being. But without the proper direction, there is no set of procedures that can guard against totalitarianism. And that direction is to define democracy as a state of being, as is done in Cultural Marxism, and to choose democracy as being a more important influence than the market place.

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Some Wedge Issues Have Become Shield Issues That Yield Hall Passes

If you watch the Netflix documentary on The Family about how some religiously conservative Christians have organized in order to participate in politics, eventually you will hear about 'wedge issues.' A Wedge issue is a controversial and divisive political issue that separates people. A wedge issue acts as a line in the sand that neither side dares steps across. And thus people on each side look at those on the other side as enemies.

In that documentary, an associate of The Family talked about how his group brought up wedge issues in order to unite conservatives, especially religiously conservative Christians. Those wedge issues include abortion, gun rights, and immigration. Of course those candidates who were on the conservative side of those wedge issues received a great deal of support from conservatives.

It is the amount of support that conservative voters have given conservative politicians who stand on the conservative side of those issues that should be noted. Those wedges issues have now become a political shields so that where a conservative politicians stands on non-wedge issues, regardless of how important those issues are, is of little to no consequence. It is as if standing on the right side of conservative wedge issues provides a shield that protects those conservative politicians from losing support regardless of where they stand on other issues. Thus, many a conservative politician has a few hall passes when it comes to where they stand on other issues.

An example will make things more clear. Because Trump has been on the conservative of wedge issues like abortion, immigration, gun rights, and immigration, he has received little to no criticism from his religious and non-religious conservative base for his cutting of environmental regulations and his breaking of a nuclear arms treaty. Note that Trump's approach to those two issues puts the whole world at risk for extinction. For what is happening to the environment involves more than just climate change. It involves allowing higher levels of toxic chemicals in the environment and few if any conservatives act as if they even noticed. And leaving the Nuclear Weapons treaty with Russia could put the whole world on the chopping block since with the emergence of new nuclear weapons comes a increased possibility of their use.

Of course, one can point out that neither environmental  or defense spending issues are not concerns to many conservatives. However, the deficit is and it has spiked sharply under Trump's policies and yet, Trump receives no criticisms. Instead, a significant number of Christian Trump supporters regard Trump as God's man for this hour. And that is all because of where Trump has been standing on the all important wedge issues.

Thus, those conservative wedge issues have protected Trump from criticism elsewhere, even regarding a traditional conservative concern. This gives Trump a great deal of freedom to do what he wants to elsewhere without having to worry about losing support from his base.

And for some Christian supporters, it isn't just wedge issues that grants Trump more hall passes, it is saying anything that sounds Christian. None of his other actions matter to many a religiously conservative Christians when he talks as if he is a Christian.

One might be tempted to think that granting leaders hall passes because they have scratched the conservative Church's back is an American thing, but it isn't. The Churches in Syria and Egypt have, for the most part, supported their own state dictators because those dictators have protected the respective Churches from extremist enemies. Thus, many in those churches ignore how those leaders brutally oppress others and shut down dissent because they are being taken care of.

It would seem that the worst President a group of supporters could give hall passes to than Trump. Trump is not just heavily narcissistic and authoritarian, he lacks the common level of self-control. Because of that last trait, the more freedom his base gives to Trump, the more dangerous he becomes. 



 

Friday, August 16, 2019

Morality's Great Divide

In a recent article, Tara Isabella Burton (click here for a bio) has recently written an article for Religion News Service about the influence that Iris Murdoch has had on Millennials. Iris Murdoch is a 20th century British literature writer and atheist who would have just turned 100 years old. She wrote about seeking the good in life without a belief in God. And in so doing, she has encouraged Millennials to embrace moral relativity in terms of their personal morals, that is to look for what is right for just them. But something rather different from that occurred in how Millennials reacted to social justice issues (click here for the article).

 For in terms of social justice issues, Millennials have tended to  pursue universal morals. That pursuit was partially inspired by Murdoch's call to 'unself' when it comes to the world. For in that call to unself is a call to look to the world is to realize that something else exists besides oneself. Thus, to unself is a call to both love and truth.

Burton then makes the point that Millennials are more likely to embrace moral relativity in terms of personal morals than previous generations. However, Millennials are looking for universal morals in terms of social justice. And the question is, are those from generations that preceded Millennials  looking to embrace universal morals in terms of social justice or do they prefer moral relativity regarding social justice issues?

It is at this point, that perhaps Burton has discovered, or at least mentioned, the moral divide that has been a part of Americans for at least a half a century. The moral divide is that there are two distinct sets of moral standards for which one can either hold to universal morals or moral relativity. One set concerns itself with personal morals and the other set is concerned with social justice issues.

For religiously conservative Christians, moral absolutes and moral relativity have always concerned themselves with individual moral choices, especially those choices that revolve around sexual practices. To hold to traditional values, especially regarding sex,  is to hold to universal values. At the same time, because older Christians tend to be nationalists, or base too much of their identity on their ethnicity, or cling to some ideological allegiance, they tended to embrace moral relativity when it came to at least some social justice issues. Because of those loyalties that are competing with loyalty to God,  all of a sudden  the moral standards that older Christians expect others to follow depended on the group others belonged to. For example, many older Christians morally oppose the idea of certain other nations  trying to at least partially act like the U.S. in policing their corner of the world. Such a view is an exercise in moral relativity since the same morals are not being applied to the nations in question.


And what that points to is that one doesn't have to fail to hold to universal morals regarding personal behavior to also practice moral relativity. For in accepting one's nation's attempts to rule over other nations while opposing other nations from doing the same is to reject a universal moral standard and thus embrace moral relativity.

Thus, both following and avoiding the  practice of following moral relativity becomes more complicated than just following traditional values about one's personal behavior. It also involves how one approaches social justice issues. For those who refuse to work for social justice have embraced moral relativity for they have shown preference as to how some can exploit others.

So perhaps Millennials and older Christians have something to teach each other when it comes to following universal morals. While older Christians will tend to be able to teach Millennials about universal morals regarding personal behavior, Millennials can teach older Christians how to apply universal morals to social justice issues.



 


References
  1. https://religionnews.com/2019/07/19/millennials-moral-relativism-and-iris-murdoch/
  2. http://www.taraisabellaburton.com/
  3. https://www.philosophybasics.com/branch_moral_universalism.html
  4. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moral_universalism
  5. https://chomsky.info/20020702/

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Comments Which Conservatives Block From Their Blogs For August 14, 2019

Aug 10

To R. Scott Clark and his blogpost on mass shootings and his attempt to single out broken families as the key factor in those who practice such violence. (This appeared in Heidelblog).

We need to consider other factors when looking at mass shootings. That factor is national location. It isn't that America is the only nation where there is divorce on demand or the other factors mentioned.  For example, I heard of one minister attribute the increase in mass shootings in our nation to the increased secular influence on society. But, again, other nations have an even greater secular influence on society while experiencing a fraction of problems with  mass shooting. And unless people want to argue population size, a block of Western Europe that has a comparable population to the US still has a fraction of U.S. mass shootings.

We might also note that the majority of mass shooters are white males (see https://www.statista.com/statistics/476456/mass-shootings-in-the-us-by-shooter-s-race/ )and a large number of domestic terrorism from 1993 to 2017 was conducted by right-wing groups. Such groups include white supremacists, anti-government groups, and anti-abortion extremists (see https://www.adl.org/sites/default/files/documents/CR_5154_25YRS%20RightWing%20Terrorism_V5.pdf ). Though some might protest that because of population, it would make sense that the majority of mass shooters are whites, the percentage of white mass shooters exceeds the percentage of whites by a few percentage points. And there is also a larger percentage of black mass shooters vs the percentage of Blacks in the population. Here we should note the privilege that whites have over Blacks in society.

Also, though some would note that we switched gears from mass shootings to domestic acts of terrorism, the two groups are not disjoint. Mass shootings can be included as acts of domestic terrorism. And we should also note that the use of explosives and arson are included in acts of domestic terrorism. However, we should also note that domestic terrorist attacks include attacks where the death toll is lower than what qualifies as a mass shooting.

We might also note that the number of deaths that determine whether a mass shooting took place has been changed from 4 to 3 during Obama's Presidency. A source for statistics on mass shootings in the US can be found at Mother Jones (see https://www.motherjones.com/politics/2012/12/mass-shootings-mother-jones-full-data/ ). Using that database, we should note that the number of yearly mass shootings has increased during President Trump's Presidency so that it is only under Trump's Presidency that we have a double digit number of mass shootings per year (for the years 2017 and 2018, there are currently 8 mass shootings for the year 2019).

Thus, despite what was reported in Scott's article on mass shootings, there are connections to make between certain acts of violence and race along certain acts of violence and ideology. Since just after 9/11 to 2016, just short of 73% of domestic terrorist attacks were conducted by right-wing groups. Beliefs involved in right-wing attacks include:
 

    ---  Fiercely Nationalistic
    ---  Anti-gobal
    ---  Suspicious of Federal Authority
    ---  Reverent of individual liberty (especially the right to own guns, be free of taxes)
    ---  Belief in conspiracy theories that involve a grave threat to national sovereignty and/or personal liberty
    ---  Belief that one's own personal and/or national "way of life" is under attack
    ---  Belief in the need to be prepared for an attack


In addition, 23% [CORRECTION: the number is right but it is not the percentage, I made a mistake in the comment, it should be 27% because of 23 incidents out of 85] of domestic terrorist attacks have been conducted by Muslim extremist groups (for that of statistics see  https://www.gao.gov/assets/690/683984.pdf ).

Thus, the emphatic effort of the above article to try to blame the bulk of mass shootings or other acts of violence to that of broken families seems to stem from more from ideological concerns than from a wider view of the problems with violence and the evidence.

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To Rosaria Butterfield and her message given on Abounding Grace Radio on how Christians should react to Intersectionality. She rejects Intersectionality as being anti-Christian. She also views the Celibate Gay Christian movement to be a contradiction to the Gospel. This was a recorded message posted on bounding Grace Radio.

Also posted on heidelblog at https://heidelblog.net/2019/08/agr-conference-audio-intersectionality-what-it-is-and-why-it-matters/
 

Note that the comment below was sent to both sites.

A few observations are necessary here.  First, when Rosaria talks about Intersectionality's rejection of the Christian metanarrative, she is not being precise enough. For Intersectionality does not have a monopoly on rejecting the Christian metanarrative, both Modernism and Post Modernism reject the Christian metanarrative. But here we should note that the Christian metanarrative is simply a subset of Pre Modernism. Modernism rejects the faith metanarrative of Pre Modernism while Post Modernism rejects the metanarratives of both Pre Modernism and Modernism.
Since Intersectionality is child of Post Modernism, it too rejects the Christian metanarrative. But why is this the case? The root of Post Modernism's rejection of Pre Modernism's metanarrative is not ideologically based as it is observationally based. That is because of many forms of human exploitation and persecution practiced by standard bearers of Pre Modernism (including Christian standard bearers), Post Modernism rejects the Pre Modernism's metanarratives. But lest Pre Modernism feels too marginalized, Post Modernism has the same reaction to Modernism.
This points to the kind of truth system employed by  Post Modernism. It is an outcome-based truth system where truth is determined by whether one's tenets has been used in the exploitation or oppression of others.

Right away we should note the kind of thinking involved in Post Modernism. That thinking  fails to distinguish between the consistent outcomes of how a metanarrative determines how we treat others from misattributed or inconsistent ones. This failure to make such important distinctions is the hallmark of black-white thinking. And we need to look at whether, in her reaction to Intersectionality as well as the Celibate Gay Christian Movement, Rosaria employs the same type of thinking.

Another observation involves the fact that Christians live in two different worlds that have connections. I am not talking about some 2 Kingdom model of thought here. Rather, I am talking about the world of the Church and how the Christian should expect  the Church treat people and Society and how the Christian should expect Society to treat people. Should the Christian expect both Society and the Church to treat people the same or differently? Should we Christians confuse Society with the Church or vice-versa? What we have today are very conservative Christians and very liberal Christians providing mirror images of each other. This is where while some Christians judge Society by how it treats and regards people with how the Church should while others employ the converse.

Which way should we judge? We could answer that question with an analogy. In America, while we expect the Church to demand that its members believe in Christ alone as God and Savior, we expect society to make no such demand. Thus, we expect the Church and Society to act differently from each other. Thus regarding LGBT concerns. the issue becomes whether we should expect the Church and Society to behave differently or the same toward the LGBT community.  This issue is not explicitly expressed explicitly Rosaria's comments though it seems that she gives some indication that she believes  Society and the Church to treat and regard the LGBT community much  in the same way.
Finally, whether we religiously conservative Christians can see partial value in Intersectionality depends on whether we can escape the conservative-liberal versions of confusing the Church with Society.


Tuesday, August 13, 2019

A Different Kind Of Coup

Usually a coup refers to a government overthrow resulting in a new government. But we are not facing usual times right now. We see less and less self-restraint in how people are treated by both our highest government official and fellow citizens. This coup started at the top but has drifted downward to many of us common folk. We could call this a coup of the nation's morals.

It isn't that the U.S. has been the world's bastion of freedom and equality that it claims to be. But there was a time when wealth was more distributed than it is today. There was a time when, out of self-restraint, politicians who wanted to strike back at critics did so in more refined ways if at all. And there was a time when people didn't strike out at each other through practices like mass shootings, road rage, and other assaults as they do today. And oddly enough, this lack of self-restraint may be related to what causes the current wealth disparity we see in our nation.

What is this coup that has affected people from many political positions  as well as everyday citizens? The coup that has taken place has replaced the recognition that we need to contribute to help each other  with the belief that self-interest is our only moral obligation.

We should note that just because one believes that self-interest is our only moral obligation doesn't mean that one doesn't help others. What it does mean is that those who believe that self-interest is one's only moral obligation think that being concerned with the welfare of others is optional rather than mandatory. And though we could easily scapegoat many of those who are wealthy with embracing this view of self-interest, reality tells us that this view of self-interest has infected all classes of people from those with the most power to those who are trying to escape marginalization.

As said earlier, it is easy to see this view of self-interest being practiced by many who are wealthy. After all, they often use their wealth to buy political influence. And the result of buying political influence includes getting the government to employ their businesses' services as well as having the government relieve them  of their social responsibilities. Part of relieving them of their social responsibilities includes not requiring them to pay their fair share of taxes as well as allowing businesses to exploit others and the environment. All of that is done by the wealthy with the hopes of maximizing their own personal profits even though they already have money to burn. Their chief motive is that of competing with their class peers to see who can accumulate the most wealth.


And though we could easily scapegoat the bourgeoisie  for following that ethic, don't many of our sports heroes do the same when they negotiate their contracts. And don't some sports commentators sometimes scorn those professional athletes for not trying maximize their own personal profits?

And what about some of those conservative Americans who believe that when the government taxes people in order to help those in need, it is stealing from the taxpayers? Does not that belief imply that one's pursuit of self-interest is one's only moral obligation?

The negotiations between unions and owners sometimes see both sides following the maxim that pursuit of self-interest is one's only moral obligation. For don't negotiations all too often reveal how both workers and owners are trying to get the most out of each other while giving the other party as little as possible?




We can now go to the President. Never in my lifetime have I ever seen a President who lacks self-restraint as  Donald Trump does. He scolds and belittles all critics in an effort to retaliate against all criticisms, fair and unfair, without regard for the feelings of his targets or the example he is setting as the President of our nation. In acting out the way he does, he only shows interested in what he wants. The interests of others are tossed aside.

And isn't that what we see in the violence we practice on our fellow citizens. Whether these incidents include road rage or mass shootings or terrorist attacks, the only interests that are to be satisfied are those of the ones attacking others. There is no self-restraint based on concern for the welfare and rights of others.

This belief that one's only moral obligation is to pursue self-interest comes from the ever growing influence of the Free Market on society. For what does the Free Market teach its participants? Doesn't it teach that one can morally afford to pursue self-interest only because the market and the law of supply and demand will prevent one from exploiting others?


Perhaps the reason why not enough of us object to government policies that reward the wealthy and exploit the rest is because we too cling to the same ethic that those who have bought our government's officials passionately embrace. The only difference between the wealthy and the rest of us is that they have pursued self-interest more effectively than we have.

We need to reverse this trending ethic that says pursuit of self-interest is our only moral obligation. Those who hold to such an ethic, no matter how much they voluntarily help others, are destroying our nation.  For when we believe that pursuing self-interest is our only moral obligation, we objectify others and we teach others to do the same. When we believe that pursuing self-interest is our only moral obligation,we see others as disposable objects whose only value is determined by how they benefit us.

In saying all of the above, I am not saying that pursuing self-interest per se is wrong. What is being targeted here is the belief that pursuing self-interest is our only moral obligation. Thus, we should pursue self-interest along with pursuing the welfare of others. We have a moral obligation to promote well-being of others. So that when we see those who live in deprivation, we owe it to them, according to our ability, to help and protect them. And in doing so, we could partially reverse the coup that has taken place.






Friday, July 26, 2019

Hope On The Horizon

In one sense, it has been a tough couple of years for some of us who are nonviolent leftists. Meeting Stalinists and members of Antifa  has been discouraging because many from both groups advocate violence. And if that wasn't enough, there are the online discussions where in order to advocate violence, some will resort to boldface lies. One such lie I saw online was a person who claimed that Martin Luther King Jr. supported violence. It is perhaps impossible to see such a greater misrepresentation of anyone than that.

Thus, an article by John Gehring (click here for a bio) not only caught my eye, it provided a small amount of much needed relief. For Gehring just recently wrote an article for Religion News Services calling for religious civil disobedience (click here for the article). And this involves nonviolence because of both whom Gehring appealed to as examples and the words he quoted.  Gehring used King, Gandhi, and Dorothy Day as examples. And then he cited the title of a Catholic Bishops' statement from 1993: The Harvest Of Justice Is Sown In Peace. So is certain that among other things, Gehring is calling for nonviolent activism to oppose the direction that President Trump has been taking our nation. And Gehring is appealing to America's religious community to carry out this activism.

However, nonviolence is not the theme of Gehring's article, non-silience is. For Gehring states that to be silent in today's America is to be complicit with the anti-Christian direction in which Trump is taking America. For Gehring, speaking out includes civil disobedience. And he provides an example of being arrested. So the rest of this blogpost will look at the kind of activism Gehring is calling us to.


It has often been said that today's wars are often fought using yesterday's war's tactics. And here, we might ask ourselves whether the same applies to activism. While civil disobedience yielded much fruit in past protests for social justice, the issue becomes whether it will contribute to the promotion of social justice today.

Who benefits the most when civil disobedience is employed? Is it the individual in knowing that he/she took a stand or is it the cause because such disobedience sparked  real change? Such is an important question because whether civil disobedience is done more for the ego of the participant than the advancement of the cause addresses the need for such disobedience.

It's not that I don't respect those who are willing to be incarcerated for their beliefs. The main issue for me is always whether given tactic used in activism advanced the cause. For if our activism does not advance the cause, then what good is that tactic? How can our tactics be personally rewarding if they do not advance the cause? So though I personally support and greatly respect those who are willing to get arrested, I wonder if sometimes, peaceful civil disobedience is counterproductive. For the goal of all activism is to raise awareness of an issue in a way that will recruit more people to the cause. So I have to wonder if we are arrested for civil disobedience in obscurity, has our time in jail contributed to the cause.

Gehring's article is a worthwhile article to read. His call to nonviolence is essential in today's world where people from all ideological sides are following Trump's example of throwing away self-restraint. And what he says about being silent in today's world is to support injustice. But we should always think about whether using yesteryear's tactics, such as civil disobedience, promote social justice today. For if it doesn't, then we would have  hurt our chances at influencing more of the public as to the rightness of our causes.





Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Comments Which Conservatives Block From Their Blogs For July 24, 2019

July 17

To R. Scott Clark and his blogpost that quotes a portion of a Chris Gordon article that compares the use of the rainbow by the LGBT community with that used by God after God delivered Noah from the flood. In that article, Gordon seems to lament over the legalization of same-sex marriage as well as the rejection of God’s Word shown in their sexual preferences. This appeared in Heidelblog.

Chris Gordon’s article:  https://www.agradio.org/what-the-gay-marriage-movement-should-know-about-gods-rainbow.html

The writer of the article, Chris Gordon, talks about the Christian weeping over how people are rejecting what God has said about marriage in the last part of his article. But is there only one kind of sin that Christians should weep over here?

Shouldn't Christians also weep over any society that seeks to punish the LGBT community because of their sexual sins? After all, we American Christians would easily weep over the denial of religious freedom for those who worship false gods. Why should we not also weep when those in the LGBT community are punished by society rather than treated as equals. Wanting the LGBT community to be treated as equals in society is not more an endorsement of their sexual sins than wanting those who follow other religions to be treated equal in society an endorsement of their false gods.

Yes, we Christians need to share the Gospel and what God says about human sexuality with the LGBT community. And we need to do that in love. But we are not showing love when we speak kindly to them while demanding that society must marginalize them.




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July 23

To Joe Carter and the video he posted in a blogpost that talks of the emerging crisis from our ever growing national deficit and debt. This appeared in the Acton blog.

The bias of the video presentation is beyond being disingenuous. Claiming that self-funded programs like Social Security and Medicare contribute to the debt is lying. The only way that Social Security contributes to the debt is for the fund to demand that the federal gov't pay back what it has borrowed from the fund.

In addition, we might want to note that defense spending in spread through several budgets including the DOD  budget, Treasury budget, and the DOE and has been approaching or exceeding $1 trillion for a while. We should also note that there are corporations that receive more in gov't subsidies than they pay in federal taxes and those that pay no taxes at all. We could also include how the pharmaceutical industry exploits Medicare spending. And we could go on.

We could raise taxes on corporations but we are threatened with the loss of jobs when that option is considered. Why? Because we live in a shareholder economy where business's primary interest is to feed the greed of the shareholders. Traditionally speaking, the definition for the term 'stakeholder' was that all who are impacted by a business serve as stakeholders for that business. But today's working definition of the the term 'stakeholder' has become synonymous with the word 'shareholder.' It isn't that some businesses don't recognize other stakeholders in addition to shareholders. It is that the predominant business ethic is to conflate the definitions of the two words. And such an ethic helps drive the every growing wealth disparity and shifting tax burden that exist in our nation.

What really drives our deficit today is that too many corporations see the public fund as something to receive from than to give to. And so whether it is through the military industrial complex, the prison industrial complex, pharmaceutical companies exploiting medicare, and so on, too many big corporations are acting as parasites until there is nothing left to gain. And we might want to inform those who want to cut social safety nets that austerity programs and an ever growing wealth disparity in a nation hinders economic growth. That is according to the IMF.