An Excellent Spirit has read about the civil disturbances in Argentina after the elevation of leftist, wealth redistributionist Christina Kirchner Fernandez to the Presidency. Here and here. We have seen the new President in Havana with Hugo Chavez and in the embrace of President Obama. We have read the stories of her demand that Great Britain return the Falkland Islands to Argentina and the British response of another war before that happens. What next?
An Excellent Spirit has also read an article by Arthur Herman that discusses the chances of civil war in the United States in 2013. Here “The New Year has started with a monstrosity of a budget deal, one that proves that neither political party, Democrats or Republicans, is really serious about controlling the growth of big government. But soap opera dramatics about fiscal “cliffs” and sequestration shouldn’t deflect from where President Obama is really taking this country. Consider this story from the Wall Street Journal a few days before Christmas: “Thousands of people in several Argentine cities ransacked supermarkets for a second day in the latest challenge to President Christina Kirchner, who is struggling to revive a weak economy…In the central city Rosario, two people were killed during the incidents and 137 people arrested. Washington’s Republicans and Democrats alike have become the toll collectors on the road to serfdom”
Herman goes on to point to Argentina’s wealth redistributionist policies and the toll they have taken on the Argentine economy and the proud people. “The violence puts Mrs. Kirchner in a difficult position as the poor are [her] core constituents…Her government spends billions of dollars a year to help low income families, including free health care…[Yet] Argentine activists who claim to represent the poor traditionally block access to supermarkets in the month of December to demand free food and other items…The latest events were some of the worst acts of looting and vandalism in years…. Local media showed dozens of men, women, and children hauling away televisions, refrigerators, and food.”
Herman then returns to his theme of “takers and makers” in the United States: “Some have said my warnings about a coming civil war between makers and takers are exaggerated. It’s true that Argentina’s politicians have been waging class warfare since Juan and Eva Peron–and they aren’t fazed when it turns bloody. Obama and the Democrats are relative newcomers to the game. But Argentina reveals who really suffers when those who create a nation’s wealth get mugged by those who spend it–as just happened this week in Washington. It’s the poor and the middle class, the very ones big government says it’s trying to protect.”
An Excellent Spirit has been all over this story for months. Here and here. We have even discussed what the “entitlement culture” will do to a nation spiritually. Here and here. The tragedy is now upon America and the outlook is not good. If Argentina is any indication of what will happen, we must, according to Herman, begin to consider civil war in America in 2013 and beyond. He correctly identifies the problem. It is not, as Mitt Romney foolishly suggested “the 47%”. Herman lays the blame where it should go: on all of us who voted for bigger government. “Since 1970, America’s public sector has exploded as a percentage of GDP, rising to almost 25% last year. While the national unemployment rate hovers at the 8% mark, government worker unemployment rate is a cozy 3.8%. Sixteen percent of America’s workforce now work for government. By the time the Obama administration ends, we won’t be that far away from Argentina’s 21 percent. Yet as an economic and social enterprise, government creates nothing. Far from adding to people’s standard of living, government is the number one cause of poverty in this country. It forces those who depend on its largesse to live hand to mouth, with no time or money to plan for the future. They become unable to fend for themselves—and increasingly resentful of those who can.”
Who cares, you might ask. America is bigger than Argentina and vastly more wealthy and with trillions in resources. Herman exposes that myth. “When the economy tanks and the government checks have to shrink, their only alternative is to take to the streets. That’s what happening in Argentina, and in Greece; and that’s where the growth of government is taking us here, as this current budget deal increases handouts–and more and more Americans are finding that an unemployment or Social Security disability check is their only life line.” With Obamacare about to kick in and destroy the best health care system in the world and trillions of dollars in new taxes to pay for hundreds of thousands of new government workers who do not know anything about health care, America has embarked on a journey to the kind of hell that Argentina, Greece, France and Spain (to name just a few nations staggering under debt and spending problems) have blazed a path for us to follow. “Washington’s Republicans and Democrats alike have become the toll collectors on the road to serfdom–and the road to Rosario.”
Americans would do well to think, pray and seek God for His Word about what we should do. As we have pointed out before, understanding is not necessarily knowledge, but a knowing of what God says we should know and basing what we do upon that understanding. We have already seen how little those in Congress and the White House understand. The first two actions in 2013 have not set a good trajectory. As Professor Herman says “How far down that road depends on how our private sector rallies in 2013 after two numbing defeats, first on November 7 and then on Capitol Hill this week.” Herman is right when he says we need “to explain to that 47 percent that when big government wins, we all lose–and that this nation won’t survive if it does.”