Monday, November 03, 2008

"Lunch is Free"

The quote John used on my equality post prodded me to poke around FARMS a bit. I found this gem from Hugh Nibley a couple of weeks ago and have been slowly digesting it. I think it nicely sums up the thoughts and feelings I've been having over the past couple of years regarding not only my own perception of work, money, poverty, and equality, but where my own priorities should be.

Money quotes:

"Therefore, if any man shall take of the abundance which I have made and impart not his portion, according to the law of my gospel, unto the poor and the needy, he shall, with the wicked, lift up his eyes in hell, being in torment."

and

"To serve the classes that are living on them, the poor, the laboring men and women are toiling, working their lives out to earn that which will keep a little life in them [lunch is what they get out of it, and no more]. Is this equality? No! What is going to be done? The Latter–day Saints will never accomplish their mission until this inequality shall cease on the earth."

8 comments:

Erin-lou said...

The Lord is quite poetic and persuasive. Thanks Mike for all the political insight with a touch of humor these past months. Congrats on being a new dad and may the best man win.

PassTheChips said...

You're welcome and I'm sure he will. ; )

Here Comes Everyone said...

Hugh Nibley's writings convinced me to hate politics, and put my trust in the teachings of Jesus. I still vote, though!

PassTheChips said...

Glad you voted. Hating politics is not the answer. How are we to better the world if we disengage from it? The early apostles (think Paul) were master politicians.

Brandon [DF] said...

Sorry I missed this post!

I like how Hugh points out about creating the equality is by service (voluntary) and giving unto the poor, that has been given to us. Not it being taken forcefully and done for you.

I think equality can only come from people learning and giving and serving of their own free will and choice. Not by big government taking it and giving it to those who don't earn it. That does nothing and that creates no growth.

Im not saying thats what you are saying, its just what those quotes made me think of :)

PassTheChips said...

That's not why I posted this. I posted this because I have been lately been inspired to serve in my community more.

Addressing your comments:

- The rich who are born rich no more earn it than the poor who are born poor.

- Are you espousing getting rid of the progressive income tax? Unemployment insurance? Social Security? Medicare? Prescription drugs for the elderly? Public education? All of these are redistributive. A level playing field (equal opportunity) is what we all deserve. The creation of a level playing field can only be accomplished by government. What we do with that opportunity is wholly up to us.

- I can think of one person who benefited mightily from public assistance (our current president-elect). Public assistance via redistribution isn't some giant black hole. Yes, there is waste, as with any imperfect system and yes, the system can be improved, but every man for himself (i.e., Social Darwinism) is not acceptable.

Here Comes Everyone said...

When I said I hate polictics, I meant I hate "politics," not being engaged in the world. I hate the maneuvering, the polling, the backbiting, the rabble rousing, the favoritism (on both side of the aisle. And why do we even HAVE aisles?), the hyperbole, the partisanship, the elitism, etc. You know how Joseph Smith said he taught the people correct principles, and let them govern themselves? Well John Taylor quoted it a little differently once. He said you cannot govern yourself correctly unless you understand true principles. And I know the source of true priciples is Jesus Christ. What I meant to write before is that I used to have faith in the precepts of men, and now I want to learn the precepts of God, and put them into practice in the world. Hugh Nibley helped me head in that direction when I first read "Temple and Cosmos" and "Approaching Zion" when I was a senior in high school. In a lot of his works (at least the ones I've read), he really shows the dichotomy between what the Lord is trying to help us to become, and what our society and culture are teaching us.

PassTheChips said...

Well said.