Saturday, January 15, 2011

Are You a Gadianton Robber?

My little town prides itself on its conservatism.  We typically vote Republican. That right there is an oxymoron if you call yourself a Conservative.  But I digress.  Being conservative we are often heard to complain about Federal spending and about the Federal deficit.  We vote for candidates who claim to believe the same but then go about doing the opposite.  One of the most glaring examples is the current palace being constructed as our new City Hall.

We weren't even fully utilizing the old one, but just had to have a new, state of the art, show piece to boost somebody's ego.  When I complained to a city employee about what I considered to be inappropriate extravagance, especially during an economic down turn; he justified it by saying that the money for the building had been granted long before the recession.  By granted he meant that a good portion of the funds for the building had been received from the Federal Government. "So," I replied, "You let the Feds take the fall for higher taxes instead of taking the political hit yourselves."  His response was that somebody was going to get that money and it might as well be us.

And thus, we have rationalized our way into trillions of dollars of debt in this country.  We think we ought to get a share of the pie and so does everyone else and there just isn't enough pie to go around.  It's like cutting our own throats and drinking the blood to stay alive!  Who are we kidding?

In The Book of Mormon there was a group who took over the government and destroyed their political system by the very same "if we can't beat them, join them" mentality.  That group was called the Gadianton robbers.  Too often we think that we have to be a co-conspirator in some heinous scheme to get personal gain, in order to qualify for membership in that gang of greedy low-lifes.  In reality, all we have to do to join is to surrender to their system.  This country would not be in the financial pickle we're in if we each stood on our own two feet and took care of ourselves.  In my opinion, collecting unemployment payments, instead of saving for a rainy day, is joining the Gadianton Robbers.  What about seeking a Pell Grant instead of working our way through school?  Doing so increases their power and influence and decreases our own.  The same thing applies to government grants for individuals and municipalities, states and such things as Universities and other institutions.  They get the money, which always comes with strings attached.  Strings that always restrict our freedom.  The funny thing is, most of that money doesn't really exist, all we are really getting is a mountain of debt which translates to a monstrous burden on our own backs.  So we get the restrictive strings and the debt and those who pull the strings pay nothing for the bondage we willingly let them subject us to.

This is a system that is destined to destroy itself.  The more who join the robbers the fewer there are to rob.  When there remain none on whose backs the blood suckers can feed, they will surely turn on themselves.  Of course by then, they has become we.

To the degree that we vote for political candidates who make us promises of caring for needs we ought to be meeting by our own sacrifice and effort, we are joining the Gadianton Robbers.  Such candidates must take the resources to buy those votes from someone; and that someone is you and me, the fools who thought we might as well get our share of the plunder.  Didn't we ever stop to consider that we were plundering our own purses?

I call upon our community and our citizen to stop this foolishness.  Let us take care of ourselves and our own. Let us stand on our own two feet and quit this free ride mentality before it becomes too late!

1 comment:

Greg said...

Thanks Myke. There are certainly many modern-day parallels to the Gadianton Robbers. When I put together my own list of characteristics, one thing that struck me is that they simply couldn't support themselves. They had to rely on plunder in order to survive.

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