Sunday, October 19, 2008

Is Obama a Marxist?

It's funny, but three times in two days have I heard the word "Marxist" associated with Obama. One I can't remember, but the second was hearing a conversation that reminded me that "spreading the wealth around" (which Obama thinks is a good thing and Joe the Plumber doesn't) is a Marxist philosophy, and now this. Check out the entry for October 14th.

By the way, I agree with Joe the Plumber. I think that even Bill Gates shouldn't spread his wealth around if he doesn't want to. He owes no one. He made the money and it's his right to do whatever he wants with it. The biggest problem I have with the whole spread the wealth theory is that far too often people without money aren't poor because it's impossible for them to MAKE money, it's because they can't HANDLE money. They have poor money habits and throwing more money at them isn't going to solve the problem. I can say this because I had poor money habits and lots of people I know do or did, and until those habits change, all the money in the world won't help. The only thing it will do is to help keep them from taking responsibility or feeling the consequences of their actions.

That's not to say that I don't believe in giving, or in charity. I choose much more carefully these days where my charitable contributions go. Just like every other investment, I want a return on my money and I'm not interested in sending it to a giant black hole where nothing ever changes. When I lived in KC, I remember helping a lot of my employees or friends or even strangers out who were in "emergency situations", often with hundreds of dollars. I did it because I truly believed that this one act of kindness was exactly what they needed to get over the hump and make it through so they could start living a better life. Not one single person's life was ever changed for the better, and looking back I was quite often snookered and didn't realize it. I went with my own bills unpaid, helping others with children, feeling sorry for them because my life was just a smidge better than theirs.

In the times since, I've come to realize that people only change when the pain of staying the same becomes greater than the pain of changing; and throwing money at the situation often made it bearable when it should have become unbearable and forced people down a different path. I've also greatly regretted a lot of the choices I made concerning money in the past. Amelia's Granny J gave us a great book for teaching kids about handling finances, and you can be sure that will be greatly used in this house. I don't want her to be as foolish as I have been and wasted as many opportunities as I did. I hope to ingrain Biblical stewardship so that the process is automatic for her. It will be the second greatest freedom she will ever have - the first being the freedom found in Christ Jesus if she becomes saved.

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