The Summa Total of God and Economics
To be a consequence of forces exterior to oneself is to be a liberal. Therefore, a liberal is someone who pretends to be responsible for others while having no responsibility over himself. This infinite regression grounds the ideology in irrationality.
This thought was prompted by a book I've never gotten around to discussing, Who Designed the Designer?, which is of course a stupid question -- which never stops atheists -- because God is in principle without cause. Rather, he is the uncaused initiator of vertical causes.
And man is in his image. Or better, -- let's keep an open mind -- man either is or is not in God's image. If he is, then this would explain how it is that man is the only being in creation who can be a self-conscious initiator of causes, including causes "of" himself. Or in other words, this is why man is capable of conscious change and growth. He is the being who can always get better. Or worse, if he forsakes the imperative to transcend his sorry ass.
Dávila wrote over 10,000 aphorisms, but one of my favorites is The permanent possibility of initiating a causal series is what we call a person. Never before in the field of human comment have so few syllables given so much truth to so damn few of us.
In short, we have the possibility of initiating change, AKA potential; and not only, for this must be a permanent possibility, for the very reason that it is a prolongation of the Permanent. Otherwise it has no explanation, for which reason it is understandable that the left would prefer to just make it go away.
But this still makes imperfect nonsense, for what prompts the white liberal to believe, say, that the poor black person is incapable of change, such that only the intervention of white liberal statists can change him? Is this because the white liberal is a person -- i.e., capable of self-change -- and the black person is something less?
In a word, yesandno. The only thing that saves them from overt racism is the belief that white liberals are equally bereft of free will, thus the deranged axiom that we are all racist.
First of all, like anyone could know that. And even if that were true we couldn't know it, because we wouldn't have the freedom to do so. Nevertheless, it means that for the white liberal, the black person is as incapable of controlling his impulse to commit crime as is the white person incapable of controlling his impulse to despise blacks. Both forms of mental slavery require a ginormous state to remedy them.
I know, the whole thing makes no sense, but we must try to understand the sense it does make to the person whose life is organized around this nonsense. Not all religions make rational sense, you know.
By the way, perhaps you have noticed -- I have -- that I haven't been discussing overtly spiritual subjects as much lately, say, an arcanum-by-arcanum discussion of Meditations on the Tarot, or a book-by-book analysis of Balthasar's Theologic, or a comparison of Meister Eckhart and Abhishiktananda.
Well, what I believe I am attempting to do is widen out the cosmic perspective so as to have an all-embracing view of the totality, including things that aren't typically thought of as particularly theological, such as economics.
But just this weekend it came to me quite dramatically that economics is very much at the heart of the whole existentialada. This was brought home to me while reading the excellent Popular Economics. I suppose that whenever and whatever I read I'm always making farflung connections between this and that. For me, nothing is simply what it is, but rather, densely connected to everything else, both horizontally and vertically, making it something else. Everything is relationship and process, not monad and stasis.
Well, in reading this book it occurred to me that even the staunchest defender of the free market is missing an important and even insane point in not tying it together with God. The first thing a vulgar troll will say is something along the lines of "this is nothing new. Religious wackos have always deployed God as an excuse to justify inequality," or some other such nonsense.
That is not at all what we are saying, even though we will say that inequality is most certainly from God. In other words, God is the very principle that accounts for all this hierarchical diversity. In the absence of God, there would be no inequality, just a blob of undifferentiated oneness. And it is because of inequality that equality (or the dynamic movement toward it) is possible. Pure equality would prevent the dynamic tension that has lifted man out of universal poverty -- as in communism, or in human history prior to the market revolution.
As usual, Dávila puts it most succinctly: Hierarchies are heavenly. In Hell all are equal. Or, If men were born equal, they would invent inequality to kill the boredom.
To demand more of the government is to expect less of ourselves. To be Obama is to expect nothing of us except to be in the way. To be something other than a bag of wet cement is to interfere with his plan for progress.
However, to understand progress one must be capable of distinguishing it from regress. And The egalitarian passion is a perversion of the critical sense: atrophy of the faculty of discrimination. The end result is that people like Obama, who are in no position to even identify progress, are forcing it upon us.
Let's go back to what we said above about persons having the potential to initiate change, AKA liberty. Freedom is not a "thing," but a space and a vector. As Dávila says, it is indispensable not because man knows what he wants and who he is, but so he can find out who he is and what he wants.
This means that the state can only "give" a kind of faux-freedom that actually diminishes it, because freedom can only be allowed and protected. For example, to "give" Obamacare or "homosexual marriage" is to deny a host of personal freedoms. It's only starting.
Let me see if I can wrap some words around the thought I had yesterday about God and economics.
Not sure if I can do that, but perhaps I can relate some notes to myself, the sum of which may just be greater than the parts (all inspired if not plagiarized from Popular Economics).
--Membership in the "1%" never lasts long, any more than it does in professional sports
--If you don't like the wealthy, prove it by ceasing to enjoy all the things they made possible, like your smart phone, or boner pills, or automobile
--Forced equality is a ban on success
--A free economy is an information processing system that will generate inequality by matching ideas with capital
--Which is why "supply side" economics is the idea side, the creativity side, the prosperity side
--One must produce or supply something of value before being a consumer
--For which reason it is kooky to believe in Keynesian demand-side macroeconomics
--No one was demanding smart phones before they were supplied by creative people with ideas; conversely, but no amount of consumer demand will make a failed government policy go away
--Taxes are a penalty on work, and ultimately punishment of the productive in order to reward the unproductive
--The capital gains tax is a penalty on success and discouragement of risk
--People only risk because things are unequal. If things were equal, there would be no reason whatsoever to take a risk
--The creative person needs capital to transform ideas into reality
--Why not call it dynamic and generative disequilibrium instead of inequality?
--Under conditions of freedom, not everyone need concern himself with material disequilibrium. For example, I prefer to spend my life thinking about the disequilibrium between myself and God, and doing something about it; time is scarce and has alternative uses, not all of which are about money
--The most significant and consequential facts about a free economy cannot be measured or reduced to quantity. Doing so will entirely miss all the dreadful things that don't happen because of it, nor does it begin to appreciate all the miraculous things that occur when idea meets capital and places a bet on the ability to satisfy a need or desire in man
I'll give you folks the freedom to add it all up. I'm outta here.