Primitive Christianity Revived, Again
Let me start by saying I really enjoy Micah Bales blog posts. I admire that he is trying to walk the talk. However I can't get on the "occupy" bandwagon. At least not yet.
When it started I read the complaints of the occupiers and recognized the legitimacy of the complaints against the present economic powers, both government and corporate. However, I also recognized that a lot of the complaints were the result of their own poor judgment. They borrowed money to pursue interests based on the same greed they were railing against. I didn't hear many complaints of educational loans taken out for medical school. Most of what I hear is about law degrees and MBA's that didn't lead to the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. As an attorney I can state that this country doesn't need more attorneys. If we legalized drugs in this country unemployment among lawyers (and possibly judges) would add to the country's already high unemployment rate. Lawyers don't build houses, farm, manufacture, or do things that are constructive. Their best purpose should be to help people understand what they are agreeing to. However, they facilitate the destruction of families, partnerships, take part in an overly zealous law enforcement system and other negative activities all to their profit and society's misfortune. For the most part lawyers are very bright people, quick to assess what is happening in society but unlike John Adams, todays lawyers increasingly turn to whatever legal process will help them "make it" in their profession. Witness the number of class action law suits that are advertising for plaintiffs and witness how much of the awards from those class action law suits go to the attorney vs. the plaintiff. I don't want to disparage the legal profession but I want to point out that while some lawyers are altruistic most are just business men, if not by design then by necessity. So I have a hard time feeling sorry for someone complaining about his education loans taken out at expensive private schools for law degrees or MBA's for that matter.
I have many friends who grew up in a simpler time and have fallen on hard times because the economic system they knew doesn't exist anymore. I have repeatedly warned them over the years that they can't rely on what they used to to work anymore. I encourage everyone to keep their lives as simple as possible and to avoid buying into the "luxury" "you deserve it" mentality that capitalism touts. There is nothing that grieves me more then when friends (and most of my clients are friends eventually) come to me with problems that could have been avoided by simply measuring the costs before hand (Luke 14:28).
Is today's economy unfair? Definitely! Should we stand idly by? Definitely not. What to do is the question and I think that as Quakers we should strive to simplify our lives as much as possible and not buy into the country's "more is better" philosophy. KEEP IT SIMPLE STUPID applies to more than a sales pitch. I wrote a song "Love your neighbor, think before you spend" which I think is on point. I will contine to watch the "occupy" bandwagon, and at appropriate times I might even get on only to get off again but there is no substitute for wisdom and that's what we all need at times like this. Fortunately it's there for the asking - James 1:5