Monthly Archives: November 2012

The Not So New Opiate of the Masses

It is remarkable how Government has replaced religion in this country for many people.  People rely upon Government for what they used to rely upon God and their churches, and Government provides!  But I want to write about how political discussions and theses have become tinged with religious overtones.

I first noticed this in a response to a discussion I was giving about lower taxes.  The response, “What Would Jesus Do?”, perturbed me.  I understood the point of the response: that Jesus commands his followers to obey the laws of the land.  I replied, “I’m not a tax cheat!”, as most people who advocate for lower taxes are not tax cheats.  Wanting higher taxes, higher government spending, and so forth does not make one a Godly person.  In fact, God rules the hearts and minds of man, and this is quite independent of the tax rate and which political party is in charge.

Recently, I read an article about how Mitt Romney had made his tax liability zero for years, using a legal loophole in the tax code.  The article was obviously written from the annoyingly simplistic “Pay Your Fair Share” viewpoint.  The author had even used the term “Tax Evasion” to criminalize Romney’s legal avoidance of taxes.  In a discussion about this article, the word “wrong” was used to describe the avoidance of taxes by a rich guy.  And then “wrong” became “unethical”.  But then “unethical” unbelievably became immoral: It is “moral” for one to sort of maximize his tax liability.  Morality is from God.  Do not confuse the morality of giving freely to those in need, as modeled by Jesus, with “giving” taxes to the Government under coercion!

There it is.  Government has replaced religion for many people, as seen in how Government and taxation is described in religious terms.  This would be a little funny if the implications and possibilities were not so frightening: generations growing up not knowing God but worshipping Government instead.  But that last part is likely an exaggeration.  Maybe it’s just sad.

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