Skip to main content

Liberal Lie #2

B) Man becomes bad only through injustices in the environment.  Therefore the role of any government or institution is to rid the society of all injustice.

This argument of liberalism is the centerpiece of its philosophy because once a person accepts this then life becomes a series of injustices that need to be remedied.  The irony of this argument is that life will always be full of injustices and if these injustices need to be removed who can remove them?

I will give 3 reasons why this liberal argument is false.

Reason 1: There are people who are still able to live meaningful lives despite injustices in their environment.  Victor Frankl, a holocaust survivor was able to find meaning despite his horrible circumstances; so much so that he developed a new school of psychology.  Nelson Mandela was able to survive 27 years of imprisonment and was able to forgive his captors and lead his country into freedom.  Now this logical criticism will arise: But these examples are extraordinary exceptions which happen in very rare circumstances therefore they are null. Nature proves otherwise. A law is a law in all cases regardless of exceptions. Now a person can manipulate natural laws such as in the case of gravity where airplanes do so everyday.  But even if airplanes are able to manipulate gravity it doesn't prove that gravity doesn't exist.  So if the environment did determine a person's behavior then it would be true in all cases. But since this isn't the case it therefore isn't true.  The converse then becomes true that a person shapes their environment.

Reason 2:  No other entity besides the person can influence their own decisions.  It is true that a government can provide legitimate incentives to encourage positive behavior.  An example of this are charter schools which are funded by the government which stress a more competitive environment to improve overall behavior.  There is a certain truth that the environment can definitely shape behaviors.  But there are also cases where the environment doesn't do this as is stated in my first reason.  With that being said it doesn't take into account a person's role in the change.  Somewhere during the process a person had to make a decision to change their behavior.  Whether this was done concretely or passively the person still exerted their will into the situation.  All behavioral changes whether using the will or not require the use of the will.  A person doesn't simply change without his or her consent.  A person can be forced through strong environmental factors such as through government coercion, totalitarian leaderships, troubled neighborhoods to act in a certain way.  But still in spite of the circumstances the person still made a choice to fit into their environment.  The choice to resist is always there no matter the consequences.  Therefore the power to change always comes from the person not an outside entity.  

Reason 3: Injustice will always exist no matter how altruistic the aims of a society might be. It is true that a society should do everything in its power to rid all injustices.  But injustice will always exist since humans are imperfect.  Imperfection is a form of injustice because every human craves perfection.  This craving implies a sort of unity that doesn't exist in this world.  Furthermore nature is replete with injustices.  The lion will always kill the gazelle.  Flowers bloom and die. Predators will always destroy their prey.  Strangely these injustices balance out the natural world and act as a series of checks and balances.  In human nature injustice can serve as a catalyst for change or can serve as painful reminder that there is more to existence then what there is. Because if human existence was just then there would be no injustice, but since this is not the case injustice will always exist.  The best any society can do is to limit as much as possible the cases of injustice.


Popular posts from this blog

10 Great Quotes from The Book of Sirach

The book of Sirach is a book that is often overlooked in the bible. This is unfortunate since this book contains many wise, practical saying on how to live a virtous life. The book was believed to have been written between 200-175 B.C.E.

Here are ten quotes that I feel best reflect this timeless work.

1."Do not become a beggar by feasting with\borrowed money, when you have nothing in your purse." Sirach 18:33

2."In all you do remember the end of your life, and then you will never sin." 7:36

3.."Glory and dishonor come from speaking; a man's tongue is his downfall." 5:13"

4."A wise man is cautious in everything." 18:27

5."One who trusts others is light minded." 19:4

6."If you pursue justice, you will obtain it and wear it as a glorious robe." 27:8

7."Many have fallen by the edge of the sword, but no many as have fallen because of the tongue." 28:18

8." In all of your work be industrious and no sickness will…

George Michael, Carrie Fisher, and The Afterlife

I was stunned, as was most of the world was when I heard about the passing of George Michael on Christmas day.  Michael possessed enormous talent was and one of the most successful acts in the 1980's and early 90's

Shortly after Carrie Fisher died.  Fisher was famous for her legendary role as princess Leia from the Star Wars movies.  Strangely her mother also died the day after.

2016 was a notable year for celebrity deaths.

Some names include Prince, Glenn Frey, David Bowie,  Doris Roberts, Alan Rickman, and Muhammad Ali.

As a Catholic these deaths got me thinking about the transient nature of life and the inevitability of death.

Marcus Aurelius, the stoic, emperor, philosopher king wrote about the passing nature of life as he reflected, "Time is a sort of river of passing events, and strong is its current; no sooner is a thing brought to sight than it is swept by and another takes its place, and this too will be swept away."

Even though I agree mostly with Aurelius&…

Me vs. The Almighty

There is a famous scene in the Bible where Jacob wrestles with God.  Jacob fights with God until God takes out a bone from Jacob's thigh. Interestingly, God eventually relents and stops fighting with Jacob. After this dramatic incident, Jacob is renamed Israel which literally means, "he who struggles with God."

I can relate to this story.  Many times in my life I have argued with God. I still do. (my wife can attest to that.) Many times I have criticized his tactics, his ways, and his wisdom. In my worst moments, I have even used choice language. I have a complicated relationship with God. Like Jacob, I have wrestled with God. (thigh bone still intact)

Recently I approached a priest friend of mine and told him of my struggles with God.  I expected that he would chide me for my lack of respect and informality. What this priest said was illuminating and encouraging. He told me that it was OK at times to be angry with God, God understood. He, in fact, encouraged this honest…