Regional Conference Leadership Meets with Ted Wilson Concerning His Annual Council Remarks


(William Noel) #101

There’s a simple reason for that. Over the past 60 years Socialism has become increasingly dominant in the teaching of history. Few people younger than 60 have ready any of the writings of those who founded America or understand the issues they dealt with.

God is consistent and His teachings never change. That allows us to know Him and trust Him. So, why should we trust or follow social leaders whose opinions change over time depending on which way the political winds are blowing. For example, Obama was against gay marriage until he was for it. I prefer not to believe liars because that’s the quickest way to be deceived.

Apparently you value the ways of man above the teachings of God so I am not surprised you are such a defender of social justice. That is typical of social justice advocates and why I have seen a number of them abandon all faith in God.


(Cfowler) #102

Religious liars/deceivers are the worst.


(Tim Teichman) #103

I have not seen that and 35 years ago my history teachers were not socialists. They were conservative Adventists.

That does not seem related what my history teachers taught me. Nor do I expect that among those over 60 there are very many who have read the writings of the founders.

Have you read the bible? They change.

Everyone’s opinions change over time. Society changes. It’s normal. If you can’t follow anyone whose opinion has changed, then you can’t follow anyone.

Yes, he grew and became more informed on the subject. As any leaders finds out more and more about gay marriage and the social ramifications of it, they’re likely to become in favor of it. It’s better for the country. Even former Vice President Cheney is for it, though he is at the same time an uber-conservative politician. Because he is also informed on the subject.

Yes, when it comes to the secular world of politics. Are you now actually contrasting the teachings of God with social justice as if they are in tension, against each other? That’s a doozie! Of course God is fully on board with distributive social justice. The best parts of the bible are stories regarding the subject.

I have no idea what you’ve seen of course, but I see no reason why one would lead to the other. That is unless the person is so very upset with the church for covering up crimes or other actions that show an abject dismissal of the person over the church’s corporate welfare. The crimes of priests in the RCC come to mind. Or of teachers at SDA high schools and boarding academies.


#104

This was very well written and thought through, thank you for writing this out.


#105

Exactly! It would seem that a number of folks have never read…a book or books on economic theory and simply have an simplified view.


#106

If you were president of the church, what issues would you speak out on?


#107

William,

It is obvious that you don’t know what socialism is all about.

And you are confusing socialism with how it was implemented in some totalitarian countries. Well, let me break it to you: these countries never really implemented socialism.

And speaking of falsehood, just have a look upon what is going on in America and you will see that ex-USSR or China could take some lessons from us.


(William Noel) #108

“For I am the Lord, I change not…” Malachi 3:6.

You really need to read your Bible and see what it actually says because they are about people individually doing God’s will. The Bible model for charity is personal and from the giver to the receiver. There is no instruction from God about doing it on a national level. The foundation of Socialism is the concept of taking from those who have earned what they have and giving it to those who have not earned it, as you defend.

You’re mixing topics. Still, that is a good example of an issue where justice is necessary. Administering justice is often not easy because the offenders and their support networks don’t want to get caught or be held accountable. The most difficult offenders to bring to justice are Socialists because they operate using the authority of law to implement and enforce their sophistries.


(William Noel) #109

I used to think very positively about Socialism until I saw its gross failures and abuses of liberty. I have read the works of all the major Socialist philosophers from the mid-1800s to about 20 years ago so I know what they say. (Have you read any of them? I seriously doubt it and think you’re believing the false face politicians are painting on it.) What opened my eyes was meeting people from the “hard” communist countries and what they shared opened my eyes to the realities of Socialism and how the differences between Socialism and Communism is the severity with which the same policies are enforced and objectives are achieved. As a former regional Communist Party official from Russia told me, the difference between Socialism and Communism is like the difference between arsenic and cyanide. Both will kill you. One just sucks the life out of you with more force.


(George Tichy) #110

It’s interesting (disturbing!) that most Americans do not know the difference between Communism, Fascism, Nazism, and Socialism. Let alone Democratic Socialism. They refer to them as if they were all the same thing. Then they make completely uneducated comments on Socialism, which they believe is the same as Communism. Just hilarious…


(Tim Teichman) #111

I didn’t indicated God changed. You wrote that God’s teachings in the bible didn’t change. They clearly do.

I don’t, actually. And I don’t need a lecture from you about it.

Well that sentence doesn’t make sense, but I think I know what you mean. Why do I need to learn that people individually do God’s will? Doesn’t seem related.

This sounds like you are stating that Social justice and Socialism are the same thing. They’re not.

The foundation of every government is to take from those who have earned and spend it generally for the good of society. Those who earn more generally pay more. This money is spent in many ways, but in general all of the spending is for the greater good - at least that is the spin. The role of government includes protecting its citizens from harm. For example, from invaders. Another role is taking care of the members of society that for some reason cannot take care of themselves.

Social/Distributive justice is demanded by members of society when they demand equal treatment under the law and and in turn demand laws that attempt to ensure they are treated equally by employers and other entities with power. This is not Socialism.


(Steve Mga) #112

The problem of Government “giving things away” is that the recipients are NOT
appreciative. They EXPECT and believe they are ENTITLED and ALWAYS WANT
MORE.
And to GET MORE may engage in temper tantrum behavior toward society.
This is what happens when people are just “given” things instead of EARNING it in
some way, such as WORKING for it – earning it through their effort over given time.


(Tim Teichman) #113

I’ve heard this before, but I’ve also read that the reality is that most people who get government assistance would rather not. They would rather be self-sufficient, but just haven’t gotten there from their current situation.

Just as with other groups, there are some recipients who don’t have such ideas and would rather do nothing useful. But the presence of such people does not mean that public assistance programs should be eliminated.

I have come to think that is it quite difficult to judge accurately from the outside whether or not a person “should be” on public assistance. Trite assertions like “he’s able bodied!” and “she shouldn’t have had those kids if she can’t support them!” are not helpful and often are not aimed correctly at the people that need the assistance most - such as children, the elderly, or people who have mental issues.

Even small personal anomalies may severely impact a person’s ability to make a living in society:

  • My step sister’s father can work, but he is so constitutionally particular and slow at his work - something he can’t seem to change - that no one will hire him for meaningful work.
  • A close friend who “looks fine” has a debilitating chronic illness that means she can only work part time in a field where part time workers are not paid well.
  • My brother who worked 40 - 60 hours a week as a professor’s assistant could not consistently afford food for his kids. Food stamps helped. He’s doing something about it. He’s in school full time to get his masters in public health. But it turns out you make even less money (no money) as a student than when you’re working the crappy job you’re going to school to get away from. My mother is saving the day, but without a family safety net the only remaining one is the state.
  • A friend’s son has Aspergers Syndrome. He’s very smart and physically normal. But due to his socially aberrant behavior he may never hold down a career job and will likely always need state assistance including supervised adult living arrangements - which are not affordable for most people - especially those who need them.

#114

Thank you for these compelling examples of those who need the safety net. There are so many issues that are not visible; God help us from being judgmental and help us to be cheerful givers.


(Steve Mga) #115

What is lacking is “case management”.
It IS TRUE there are persons whose situations need assistance, but because of
something weird, are unable to get assistance that others in less need obtain.
I have seen this myself.
There is also mismanagement of monetary assistance provided. Also assistance
in kind.
Here in Macon there is LOTS of “disability money” and food stamp assistance that
ends up purchasing street drugs. A 700$ check is gone by middle of the month. A
food stamp card of 120$ traded for drugs.
On the other hand there are those who use their assistance wisely and benefit from
doing so.


#116

It is because most Americans don’t know much about history and also because the propaganda machine made in US is as efficient (if not more) as the ones in ex Soviet Union or China (except in Communist countries, a lot of people (maybe most people) are aware that it is propaganda. In the US, most people are unaware of it)


#117

Then, you have to apply the same standards to Capitalism.

Obviously, Capitalism is a big failure in America: the gap between the rich and the rest of the population is wider and wider, the health system is the worst in the Western world, the same can be said of the primary and secondary education system. The US has the biggest number of inmates per capita than any other Western country. Life expectancy is in decline in the US. The working poor population and poverty are increasing. The protection of workers in the US is lower than in any other Western country. The US has the worst maternity mortality rate and also child mortality rate in the developed world. And on, and on, and on…

As for abuses of liberty, well, let’s see: African-American population being sentenced more often and more harshly than the white population, in spite of the fact that the crime rates are equivalent in both population; government spying on its citizen; Patriot Act; people being jailed without being charged for years (i.e. Guantanamo. In fact, some prisoners spent more than ten years there and were released without being charged for any wrongdoing); tortures (huh… sorry… enhanced interrogation techniques); etc…

So, denouncing the abuses in Communist countries is fine… but don’t forget what we do here at home, above all when we do the same things…

If you had really read the major Socialist philosophers, you would have noticed that what we have seen so far in USRR, or Cuba, or China, is not really Socialism.

Someone who had some wisdom and a good sense of humor once said:

“Capitalism is the exploitation of man by man. Communism is the opposite”.


(William Noel) #118

It seems that way because, as you have confessed, you don’t know what scripture teaches.

I’ve been studying the Bible all of my life and have heard that claim made many times. So far the only people I can find making that claim are those who, like you, don’t read the Bible.

Because that’s what the Bible teaches us to do.

Actually, the myth of “social justice” is just the evil of Socialism disguised to make it look at least benign, if not good.

I agree with you to a degree. Some government functions are essential and most societies can tolerate a moderate rate of taxation. However, Socialism teaches that wealth must be taken from those who have it. One of the key concepts of Socialism is “equity for all” which means treating everyone equally. But the top 10% of wage-earners in America pay more than 50% of all the taxes so they’re already taxed in an unequal manner. How is taking an even greater portion of their income “equitable?”


(William Noel) #120

If that is true, why has capitalism produced the greatest and most widespread prosperity of any economic system in world history while Communism and Socialism produced the greatest poverty, economic and moral depravity and mass suffering?


#121

I don’t know on which planet you live but Capitalism has always created a society of inequalities where the strongest ones take advantage of the most vulnerable ones.

Prosperity? Yes, for a happy few…

You spoke of great poverty, economic and moral depravity and mass suffering? Look no further than England and the development of capitalism in this country, above all during the industrial revolution. During that period, while bankers and industrial people were becoming richer, the workers, them, were living in squalid conditions. It was a time where diseases were rampant, child mortality was extremely high, a work day could last 12 or 14 hours even for children and people were working six days out of seven, etc. What you had in England during the industrial revolution, which was a capitalistic period “at its best” (please, notice the quotes), was great poverty, economical and moral depravity and mass suffering at the hands of the capitalists. And this model was replicated in America (by the way, it is precisely in England that Marx developed his philosophy because he (and some others) saw the living conditions and poverty of the workers. So, in a way, Capitalism is responsible for the advent of Marxism).

Many people don’t realize that all the social progress in Europe and America has always been made against or in spite of the action of capitalists. For example, the abolition of child labor (America has been the last Western country to abolish child labor), vacation, workers’ rights, workers’ protection in the workplace, retirement, etc.

It is interesting to notice that it is precisely in the country that applies capitalistic principles the most, i.e. America, that we find the worse conditions and standards of living in the Western world. I come from Europe so I can make a comparison. If we consider subjects like child mortality, healthcare access and costs, education and education costs, retirement, social values, social inequalities, violence, workers’ rights, protection and safety, etc, it is worse in America than in any other Western country (many studies have shown that).

The problem in America is that many people here are uninformed and/or don’t know what’s going on in other Western countries, so they cannot make good comparisons. The media is good at keeping the people entertained but not really informed (the same can be said of politicians). And people have swallowed the myth that America is the country that the rest of the world envies which is patently false for the people who know America other than through the movies and the media.

So, it is time to remove the scales on our eyes and see the things as they are. Whatever the system people want to implement, if they are not led by the spirit of Christ it will always end up becoming a disappointing experience. We have seen this with socialism, communism, capitalism, you-name-it-ism, and even Christianity.

Because the problem is the human heart.