Tuesday, November 06, 2012

Final Vote:  God appoints Obama.

No doubt God has a good plan for America.  I tend to think the good plan is that we should become a third world nation and suffer both economically and at the hands of the morally depraved so that we might be enticed to humble ourselves and repent of our sins.  Our current situation also reminds me of a prophecy from the book of Jeremiah:

"In those days people will no longer say, 'The fathers have eaten sour grapes, and the children's teeth are set on edge.'  Instead, everyone will die for his own sin; whoever eats sour grapes - his own teeth will be set on edge." - Jeremiah 31:29-30

The meaning of the proverb was that the parents would sin, and the children suffer the consequences.  I can't think of a better way to characterize America's deficit spending madness.  I am looking forward to the Apocalypse!

15 comments:

Inklings said...

I don't believe God appointed Obama. I think he gave us free agency, and the people who exercised it appointed Obama.Now that they did, the rest of us who didn't choose him need to support him and pray for him to make wise choices for our country. In God We Trust.

Delirious said...

I look at this differently. I agree with Inklings on this one. God let's us have our free agency and choose for ourselves. Now we have to suffer the consequences.

Looney said...

Certainly we will all get to live with the consequences and we will need to trust God to get us (and our children) through it. Do y'all think we will have more opportunities to do charity with all the hope and change?

Delirious said...

I think sometimes God let's us sweat a little and suffer through hard times to remind us what source we must look to for real hope and change. So I think we may have some hard years ahead of us, but they will be a chance for us to depend more on God and, as you suggested, each other.

Max Coutinho said...


Hi Looney,

Let's face it: the Obama Campaign did a much better job.

Besides, Gov. Romney made many many mistakes and his team failed to see that the US electorate has changed. Furthermore, he was not the man for that particular job but I hope he can work with President Obama to assist him with Business (something he really knows about); in a way he will be serving the country as well. Notwithstanding, I congratulate Gov. Romney for an excellent race: he made it exciting till the end!
Another detail: an American election is not only about the Americans any longer, higher interests are at stake and therefore America will survive and unfortunately you will not be able to see the Apocalypse - sorry lol ;).

Have a great weekend.

Looney said...

@Max, well you may be right that I will have to watch the Apocalypse from the other side of the grave.

How much do you think that the campaign of the presidents actually matter?

I tend to view the primary driver as the mood of the electorate. Next is the spin that the media puts onto the campaign. Given all the appearances and statements made under every condition, I suppose Mother Theresa could be made out to be a heartless killer whereas Tamerlane could be spun as a pacifist. Thus, I think the campaigns were essentially irrelevant.

Anyway, I think the mood of the electorate is that nearly 50% believe that climate change is a serious threat to their survival, whereas trillion dollar deficits aren't. There are certainly many more factors involved.

We will certainly see how long the US can withstand the conversion to socialism and government mandated social breakdown. These things can take decades to work through (i.e Japan), but then sometimes things can happen quickly.

Max Coutinho said...

Looney,

"well you may be right that I will have to watch the Apocalypse from the other side of the grave."

LOL not even then, I'm afraid.

"How much do you think that the campaign of the presidents actually matter?"

For people in my line of business (international politics) it matters a lot. The presidential campaign gives us an opportunity to hear the candidates and observe their stance (which, believe it or not, provides a lot of information about each candidate): every single detail matters.
Nevertheless, I understand how tiring it must be for the US electorate (the ads, the phone calls etc).

"I tend to view the primary driver as the mood of the electorate."

I am not sure about the mood of the electorate (which can be extremely deceiving). Look at the mood of the electorate in the beginning of the year and look at the result on November 6. There was a time, before October, when even I thought that Mitt Romney had a chance (and yes, it worried me).

"Given all the appearances and statements made under every condition, I suppose Mother Theresa could be made out to be a heartless killer whereas Tamerlane could be spun as a pacifist. Thus, I think the campaigns were essentially irrelevant."

LOL LOL that was a good one. I understand why you would have that opinion, I really do.

"Anyway, I think the mood of the electorate is that nearly 50% believe that climate change is a serious threat to their survival, whereas trillion dollar deficits aren't. There are certainly many more factors involved."

The climate change is real (look around the world and ask New Yorkers now) but I won't deny that the present "emergency alert" is a business requisite: soon, renewable energy will generate billions and billions of dollars. With a foreign policy bonus.
About the deficit: Mitt Romney wouldn't have solved it either. But what matters now is that both sides get together and solve this issue - and some elements will make sure that they will, because the world depends on it as well.

The US will never convert to Socialism.

Looney said...

@Max, the US is already socialist given that US government spending is more than 40% of GDP.

I truly believe that what ever is happening is the best of all possible directions, given that God is running things for His purposes. So even though it seems to me that things are completely insane, it is still for a better purpose that won't be comprehensible until much later.

Then there is the view of Aristotle, Plato and others that Democracy will eventually self destruct when those who feed on the wealth of others have sufficient voting clout.

Max Coutinho said...

Looney,

"the US is already socialist given that US government spending is more than 40% of GDP."

Socialist states spend between 80% and 84% of GDP (in some cases, much more). Now that is a catastrophe and the sad reality inherited from a socialist government. The US is far from it.

"I truly believe that what ever is happening is the best of all possible directions, given that God is running things for His purposes."

Do you mean it? And if so, what do you think that purpose might be?

"Then there is the view of Aristotle, Plato and others that Democracy will eventually self destruct when those who feed on the wealth of others have sufficient voting clout."

Tell me about it (Portugal wants me, and others like me, to pay 49% of tax) *nodding*.

Looney said...

Max, I was just reading this in The Economist a few days ago:

"Even as other EU countries have curved the reach of the state, it has grown in France to consume almost 57% of GDP, the highest share in the euro zone."

Dr. Wiki has a list of the GDPs of various countries. If I set 80% as the threshold, then Cuba doesn't quite make it since they are at only 78% of GDP. North Korea isn't on the list. That leaves East Timor, Zimbabwe and Kiribati, which achieves a miraculous government spending level of 114.6% of GDP!

According to the list, the US (38.9%) isn't much different than Spain (41.1%) or Norway (40.2%).

"Do you mean it? And if so, what do you think that purpose might be?"

Indeed, I do mean this. God's overall plan isn't known to man, so I can only guess. One fact is that when wealth is too easy to come by, people easily descend into self-centered vice. Thus, the chaos is something that allows certain people to develop good character and repent of their bad, which would not occur if life is too smooth.

Max Coutinho said...

Looney,

Thank you so much for the links provided.
I stand extremely corrected. I apologise for my mistake and distraction.

"Dr. Wiki has a list of the GDPs of various countries. If I set 80% as the threshold, then Cuba doesn't quite make it since they are at only 78% of GDP. North Korea isn't on the list. That leaves East Timor, Zimbabwe and Kiribati, which achieves a miraculous government spending level of 114.6% of GDP!"

You and Dr. Wiki are right.

Now, can the US be considered a socialist country given its spending of 40% of GDP? If we were to compare countries by numbers only, then I would have to say that yes (given the fact that the US spending is approximate to the Portuguese spending, although for much different reasons - and someone today made the case, before me, that Portugal is indeed a socialist nation since its society depends heavily on the government and the private sector is nearly obliterated since it also receives help from the state); however, I would still defend that the US is not a socialist country because the private sector is very strong in America and a few social programmes do not turn it into a socialist country (look at Germany - it has a few social programmes but it is far from being a socialist nation [at heart]).
In economics, we learn that it is not fair to compare countries by their growth, deficit and debt because 4% growth in an African country is many times inferior to a 2% growth in the US/Europe and, the nature of a given country's deficit & debt differ (in terms of development, for example). So, I am not sure we can compare our nations the way we are proposing ourselves to do.

"According to the list, the US (38.9%) isn't much different than Spain (41.1%) or Norway (40.2%)."

Yet it wasn't the socialism that ruined Spain; it was the practice of savage capitalism.

"Indeed, I do mean this. God's overall plan isn't known to man, so I can only guess. One fact is that when wealth is too easy to come by, people easily descend into self-centered vice. Thus, the chaos is something that allows certain people to develop good character and repent of their bad, which would not occur if life is too smooth."

Excellent point of view, Looney.

Looney said...

@Max, I don't know much about Spain, but I have read enough of the fascist writings to know that their theory was that all private institutions should be co-opted for the greater good of the republic. This is the altruistic form that falls from rhetoric. In the practical form, the altruistic notions are pushed by the side and corrupt government officials both enrich themselves and sabotage industries that might compete with their favored ones.

I suppose one could make the argument that capitalism is doomed to be this way. The counter argument is that it is the socialist party - the Democrats - who are constantly co-opting the private sector for their ends, thus, making their prophecies self-fulfilling.

Anyway, I think Fascism and Capitalism are quite distinct systems and the failure to distinguish them is much of the reason for the economic catastrophe that is coming onto the world.

Max Coutinho said...

Looney,

Fascism is nearly the same as communism (only one is far-right and the other is far-left). They share almost the same spirit of governance.

"I don't know much about Spain, but I have read enough of the fascist writings to know that their theory was that all private institutions should be co-opted for the greater good of the republic."

Before I comment, I would like to ask something (because I am not sure): what does "co-opted" mean in this context?

"This is the altruistic form that falls from rhetoric. In the practical form, the altruistic notions are pushed by the side and corrupt government officials both enrich themselves and sabotage industries that might compete with their favored ones."

I know the picture well.

"I suppose one could make the argument that capitalism is doomed to be this way. The counter argument is that it is the socialist party - the Democrats - who are constantly co-opting the private sector for their ends, thus, making their prophecies self-fulfilling."

You reckon? Well, capitalism is not doomed to be this way at all, but people do seem to push towards making it that way; so they can then accuse it of being a failed system.

"Anyway, I think Fascism and Capitalism are quite distinct systems and the failure to distinguish them is much of the reason for the economic catastrophe that is coming onto the world."

Capitalism is an economic system. Fascism is a political system.
Most people (including politicians - I don't know whether this is true in America, you tell me) will put this two in the same category/system and then chaos is the result of doing so.

Looney said...

Max,

I will need to ponder more whether or not political and economic systems can be decoupled. A long time ago when I read Mussolini's "On Fascism" it suddenly dawned on me that the Fascists' primary arguments were related to economics. No doubt their popularity was due to their economic theories and the resulting promises.

As for "co-opted", I generally mean laws designed to coerce a private institution to do something for a greater cause that is unrelated to the business. Then there are basic laws, such as don't cheat your customer. In between those extremes there is a large spectrum of necessary basic regulations, extending to those that are pure "co-opting".

For example, there is a law stating that petrol distributors must mix a percentage of corn-ethanol with the fossil fuel. Brazilian sugar cane ethanol is just as good, but effectively banned here in the US. This has vast economic, social and environmental consequences as the US requirements are to increase ethanol production to include 80% of US farmland, which would cause food inflation world-wide ... and probably not cut our fossil fuel usage.

There are tens of thousands of similar laws on the books here in the US.

Back around the year 2000, there was a "deregulation" program for energy here in California. The idea was sound, but due to the political maneuvering, the basic business laws were removed, while the co-opting rules were left intact. Everything blew up, as anyone could have predicted, so the leftists declared that deregulation had failed and marched us back to a typical third world government managed system.

Max Coutinho said...


Looney,

Some people separate the two systems, some people do not. But like you, I will have to reflect more on it as well.

"A long time ago when I read Mussolini's "On Fascism" it suddenly dawned on me that the Fascists' primary arguments were related to economics. No doubt their popularity was due to their economic theories and the resulting promises."

And do you know what's worse? The Fascists delivered. So much so, that today (in this crisis) people evoke those times saying that at least there were no economic crisis back then. It should make us wonder: are people willing to let freedom go in exchange for economic strength?
I recently learned something: it was the Portuguese fascist government (led by Marcelo Caetano) that implemented a National Health System and Social Security in Portugal. And what is more interesting is that they were able to do it without incurring a deficit (ok, most argue that Portugal had the colonies to cover it; but still...the fascists were economically crafty).

Thank you so much for having explained me what "co-opted" means. Based on your words, yes, I must agree with you...many laws are designed to coerce private businesses; and not just in the US.

Oh yes, I read an article discussing the UN report on that (80% of US farmland being used for fuel generation) - it would sky-rocket the price of food. I understand the viewpoint of the US (not just economically but politically speaking - Brazil represents a political dilemma right now: they are too cozy with the Chinese, with the Iranians, with Hezbollah etc; so trading ethanol with them could have a lot of ramifications).

Surely, sometimes deregulations are needed and sometimes regulations are vital - businesses and governments need to start learning the meaning of economic flexibility and the meaning of not mixing political ideology with money.
The path to ethical capitalism is rocky.