Between reading my Libertarian stuff and my bible reading, a thought occurred to me… are we all guilty of theft? We sit in our homes and justify the having taxes taken for this road… or that service, that we use and enjoy. However, do I ever think about the people that are struggling with less then I have… that don’t own a vehicle nor use these government services? Wouldn’t they rather have kept their money, instead of paying for the things that I want or need?
Oh, yes. I can probably come up with a million justifications as to why it is necessary or fair. Or even, how it is beneficial for the less fortunate… but, they don’t realize it. Either way, the bottom line is that the choice of keeping their money (as oppose to contributing to my benefit) was not theirs.
It was not while reading Rothbard, nor Von Mises, that I came to this awareness of my own participatory guilt… but 2 Samuel 12:1-14:20. New International Version (NIV)
12 The Lord sent Nathan to David. When he came to him, he said, “There were two men in a certain town, one rich and the other poor. 2 The rich man had a very large number of sheep and cattle, 3 but the poor man had nothing except one little ewe lamb he had bought. He raised it, and it grew up with him and his children. It shared his food, drank from his cup and even slept in his arms. It was like a daughter to him.
4 “Now a traveler came to the rich man, but the rich man refrained from taking one of his own sheep or cattle to prepare a meal for the traveler who had come to him. Instead, he took the ewe lamb that belonged to the poor man and prepared it for the one who had come to him.”
5 David burned with anger against the man and said to Nathan, “As surely as the Lord lives, the man who did this must die! 6 He must pay for that lamb four times over, because he did such a thing and had no pity.”
I cannot help but think of the politicians in D.C. that have given themselves raises, distributed tax dollars in exchange for favors, and exempted themselves from laws foisted upon the regular public… all the while, keeping their executive health care. Furthermore, they are afforded lavish retirements for comparably short periods of public work.
On the television, I watch how outraged they are at the injustices and inequities that are currently going on in the country. “Corporations and big business must be brought to justice!” one may cry.
Big Pharma, Big Energy, Illegal Aliens, Racists, Misogynists, Entitled Whites, Republicans, Democrats, or what-ever group or labeled enemy the Statis politician can point their finger at. They are uppalled at the injustices that are imposed by these evil doers. All the while, the inequities they are inflicting upon all of us, are far worse.
David was shocked when Nathan revealed that the thief in the story, was himself. I, in turn, realized that the accomplice to the political thieves… is me. Every referendum and “penny tax” that I supported because it seemed like “a good idea, and not that much money” was theft. I didn’t look at my actions in the lens of the larger picture.
The bottom line is that this ripple-effect of taking money from those who work for it… is theft.