Author Topic: Lutherans and Socialism  (Read 3647 times)

Charles Austin

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Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« Reply #15 on: September 25, 2021, 09:17:08 AM »
The Scandinavian countries seem to be doing fine with their type of Socialism.
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Coach-Rev

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Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« Reply #16 on: September 25, 2021, 09:21:14 AM »
I was just listening to a podcast talking about an experiment done with children where they are offered one treat, or told that if they will wait 20 minutes to eat it, they can have two treats. (I'm oversimplifying, but you get the point.) The percentage of children in African agrarian countries who waited the twenty minutes was consistently much higher than in America or Europe. One theory is that people in agrarian cultures have learned to be patient, waiting for weather, crops, etc., while people in industrialized nations have lost that ability because they think everything is instantly and inevitably available.

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DeHall1

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Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« Reply #18 on: September 25, 2021, 11:34:23 AM »
The Scandinavian countries seem to be doing fine with their type of Socialism.

Which ones?

https://www.forbes.com/sites/jeffreydorfman/2018/07/08/sorry-bernie-bros-but-nordic-countries-are-not-socialist/?sh=71c5715b74ad

"To the extent that the left wants to point to an example of successful socialism, not just generous welfare states, the Nordic countries are actually a poor case to cite. Regardless of the perception, in reality the Nordic countries practice mostly free market economics paired with high taxes exchanged for generous government entitlement programs."

But hey, if you don't believe me, ask former Danish Prime Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen.
« Last Edit: September 25, 2021, 11:59:56 AM by DeHall1 »

Dave Benke

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Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« Reply #19 on: September 25, 2021, 12:13:30 PM »
The Scandinavian countries seem to be doing fine with their type of Socialism.

Which ones?

https://www.forbes.com/sites/jeffreydorfman/2018/07/08/sorry-bernie-bros-but-nordic-countries-are-not-socialist/?sh=71c5715b74ad

"To the extent that the left wants to point to an example of successful socialism, not just generous welfare states, the Nordic countries are actually a poor case to cite. Regardless of the perception, in reality the Nordic countries practice mostly free market economics paired with high taxes exchanged for generous government entitlement programs."

But hey, if you don't believe me, ask former Danish Prime Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen.

The bolded phrase is where the rubber hits the road. 

Dave Benke

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« Reply #20 on: September 25, 2021, 12:24:37 PM »

We are a greedy people. We will think about taking the five cookies for ourselves rather than sharing them with others. If a purpose of the Law is to curb our sinfulness; couldn't laws that require us to share be curbs against the sin of greed?

I was just listening to a podcast talking about an experiment done with children where they are offered one treat, or told that if they will wait 20 minutes to eat it, they can have two treats. (I'm oversimplifying, but you get the point.) The percentage of children in African agrarian countries who waited the twenty minutes was consistently much higher than in America or Europe. One theory is that people in agrarian cultures have learned to be patient, waiting for weather, crops, etc., while people in industrialized nations have lost that ability because they think everything is instantly and inevitably available.


Mark Allen Powell writes about his experiences with the Parable of the Prodigal Son in regards to the younger son's problem(s). When 100 American students were asked to retell the story from memory, only six mentioned the famine. All 100 mentioned the squandering. The story still makes sense when the famine is omitted.


When he did the same experiment with Russian students, a majority (84%) remembered the famine; while less than half (34%) mentioned the squandering. Going further, he asked the Russians, "Aren't we supposed to think that the son did something wrong?" Their answer (as Powell tells it): "… the boy's mistake was not how he spent his money - or how he lost it. His mistake was leaving his father's house in the first place. His sin was placing a price tag on the value of his family, thinking that money was all he needed from them. Once he had his share of the family fortune, the family itself no longer mattered. In a phrase, his sins was wanting to be self-sufficient." (What Do They Hear?: Bridging the Gap Between Pulpit and Pew, p. 18, italics in original).


He did something similar with Tanzanian students. After reading the story, he asked them to write down: "Why does the young man end up starving in the pigpen?" He writes: "I was curious to see how many would write 'Because he wasted his money' and how many would write 'Because there was a famine.' A few did write responses like that, but the vast majority - around 80 percent wrote something completely different: 'Because no one gave him anything to eat.'" (Ibid. p. 26)


He hadn't expected that answer! (Nor did I when I read this.) He relates more of what the Tanzanians told him:


I pressed the matter with them. I asked, "Why should anyone give him anything?" Wasn't it his own fault - squandering his money like he did?" They told me that was a very callous perspective. The boy was in a far country. Immigrants often lose their money. They don't know how things work - they might spend all their money when they shouldn't because they don't know about the famines that come. People think they are fools just because they don't know how to live in that country. But the Bible commands us to care for the stranger and alien in our midst. It is a lack of hospitality not to do so. This story, the Tanzanians told me, is less about personal repentance than it is about society. Specifically, it is about the kingdom of God. It contrasts the father's house with the far country. The father's house is the kingdom of God that Jesus keeps talking about, but the far country is a society without honor. Everyone who heard this parable would be shocked by his depiction of such a society, a country that would let a stranger go hungry and not give him anything to eat. And a central point of the parable is that the scribes and the Pharisees are like that. Jesus tells the parable as a response to the scribes and Pharisees, who are grumbling that he welcomes sinners and eats with them (15:2). The parable teaches that the kingdom of God is a society that welcomes the undeserving, and it puts the scribes and Pharisees to shame by showing them that they are like a society with no honor, that shows no hospitality to the stranger in its midst. (Ibid. p. 27)


These stories are in a chapter called: "Social Location: A Matter of Perspective." While some of us see the Nordic countries as having democratic socialism; others see them as not socialists at all. Whatever it is called, it is more like the model that the liberal Democrats are talking about rather than Russia, Cuba, or Venezuela.


"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« Reply #21 on: September 25, 2021, 12:28:03 PM »
The Scandinavian countries seem to be doing fine with their type of Socialism.

Which ones?

https://www.forbes.com/sites/jeffreydorfman/2018/07/08/sorry-bernie-bros-but-nordic-countries-are-not-socialist/?sh=71c5715b74ad

"To the extent that the left wants to point to an example of successful socialism, not just generous welfare states, the Nordic countries are actually a poor case to cite. Regardless of the perception, in reality the Nordic countries practice mostly free market economics paired with high taxes exchanged for generous government entitlement programs."

But hey, if you don't believe me, ask former Danish Prime Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen.

The bolded phrase is where the rubber hits the road. 

Dave Benke


Perhaps where the rubber hits another road is:


The happiest countries:
1. Finland
2. Denmark
3. Norway
4. Iceland
5. Netherlands
6. Switzerland
7. Sweden
8. New Zealand
9. Canada
10. Australia


https://www.globalcitizen.org/en/content/ten-happiest-countries-in-the-world/?utm_source=paidsearch&utm_medium=usgrant&utm_campaign=verizon&gclid=Cj0KCQjwkbuKBhDRARIsAALysV6oNj70IaVxyNd2O8BzlA5GNQXrxsMJHWL6ExBZsdgTsfaV4nmz6egaApGBEALw_wcB

"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

DeHall1

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Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« Reply #22 on: September 25, 2021, 12:30:41 PM »
The Scandinavian countries seem to be doing fine with their type of Socialism.

Which ones?

https://www.forbes.com/sites/jeffreydorfman/2018/07/08/sorry-bernie-bros-but-nordic-countries-are-not-socialist/?sh=71c5715b74ad

"To the extent that the left wants to point to an example of successful socialism, not just generous welfare states, the Nordic countries are actually a poor case to cite. Regardless of the perception, in reality the Nordic countries practice mostly free market economics paired with high taxes exchanged for generous government entitlement programs."

But hey, if you don't believe me, ask former Danish Prime Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen.

The bolded phrase is where the rubber hits the road. 

Dave Benke

Free markets + high taxes ≠ socialism.

The capitalist economic model relies on free market conditions for the creation of wealth; the production of goods and services is based on supply and demand in the general market.
In a socialist economic model, the production and consumer prices are controlled by the government.

peter_speckhard

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Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« Reply #23 on: September 25, 2021, 12:33:26 PM »
The Scandinavian countries seem to be doing fine with their type of Socialism.

Which ones?

https://www.forbes.com/sites/jeffreydorfman/2018/07/08/sorry-bernie-bros-but-nordic-countries-are-not-socialist/?sh=71c5715b74ad

"To the extent that the left wants to point to an example of successful socialism, not just generous welfare states, the Nordic countries are actually a poor case to cite. Regardless of the perception, in reality the Nordic countries practice mostly free market economics paired with high taxes exchanged for generous government entitlement programs."

But hey, if you don't believe me, ask former Danish Prime Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen.

The bolded phrase is where the rubber hits the road. 

Dave Benke


Perhaps where the rubber hits another road is:


The happiest countries:
1. Finland
2. Denmark
3. Norway
4. Iceland
5. Netherlands
6. Switzerland
7. Sweden
8. New Zealand
9. Canada
10. Australia


https://www.globalcitizen.org/en/content/ten-happiest-countries-in-the-world/?utm_source=paidsearch&utm_medium=usgrant&utm_campaign=verizon&gclid=Cj0KCQjwkbuKBhDRARIsAALysV6oNj70IaVxyNd2O8BzlA5GNQXrxsMJHWL6ExBZsdgTsfaV4nmz6egaApGBEALw_wcB
Hmmmm. I’m wondering how that list could be any more lilly white. You may as well rank nations by percentage of the populace with blond hair.

DeHall1

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Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« Reply #24 on: September 25, 2021, 12:48:04 PM »
The Scandinavian countries seem to be doing fine with their type of Socialism.

Which ones?

https://www.forbes.com/sites/jeffreydorfman/2018/07/08/sorry-bernie-bros-but-nordic-countries-are-not-socialist/?sh=71c5715b74ad

"To the extent that the left wants to point to an example of successful socialism, not just generous welfare states, the Nordic countries are actually a poor case to cite. Regardless of the perception, in reality the Nordic countries practice mostly free market economics paired with high taxes exchanged for generous government entitlement programs."

But hey, if you don't believe me, ask former Danish Prime Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen.

The bolded phrase is where the rubber hits the road. 

Dave Benke


Perhaps where the rubber hits another road is:


The happiest countries:
1. Finland
2. Denmark
3. Norway
4. Iceland
5. Netherlands
6. Switzerland
7. Sweden
8. New Zealand
9. Canada
10. Australia


https://www.globalcitizen.org/en/content/ten-happiest-countries-in-the-world/?utm_source=paidsearch&utm_medium=usgrant&utm_campaign=verizon&gclid=Cj0KCQjwkbuKBhDRARIsAALysV6oNj70IaVxyNd2O8BzlA5GNQXrxsMJHWL6ExBZsdgTsfaV4nmz6egaApGBEALw_wcB

Again, these countries aren't socialist.

From the same article, 3 of the top 5 "least happiest" countries are either socialist or former socialist (now Marxist) countries.   

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« Reply #25 on: September 25, 2021, 12:49:07 PM »
The Scandinavian countries seem to be doing fine with their type of Socialism.

Which ones?

https://www.forbes.com/sites/jeffreydorfman/2018/07/08/sorry-bernie-bros-but-nordic-countries-are-not-socialist/?sh=71c5715b74ad

"To the extent that the left wants to point to an example of successful socialism, not just generous welfare states, the Nordic countries are actually a poor case to cite. Regardless of the perception, in reality the Nordic countries practice mostly free market economics paired with high taxes exchanged for generous government entitlement programs."

But hey, if you don't believe me, ask former Danish Prime Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen.

The bolded phrase is where the rubber hits the road. 

Dave Benke

Free markets + high taxes ≠ socialism.

The capitalist economic model relies on free market conditions for the creation of wealth; the production of goods and services is based on supply and demand in the general market.
In a socialist economic model, the production and consumer prices are controlled by the government.


In my understanding, the production and consumer prices are controlled by the community or the state. Socialism does not have to be controlled by the government. A farmers co-op that controls production and prices is socialism.


Wiki includes this description under Socialist State:


A socialist state is to be distinguished from a multi-party liberal democracy governed by a self-described socialist party, where the state is not constitutionally bound to the construction of socialism. In such cases, the political system and machinery of government is not specifically structured to pursue the development of socialism. Socialist states in the Marxist–Leninist sense are sovereign states under the control of a vanguard party which is organizing the country's economic, political and social development toward the realization of socialism. Economically, this involves the development of a state capitalist economy with state-directed capital accumulation with the long-term goal of building up the country's productive forces while simultaneously promoting world communism. Academics, political commentators and other scholars tend to distinguish between authoritarian socialist and democratic socialist states, with the first representing the Soviet Bloc and the latter representing Western Bloc countries which have been democratically governed by socialist parties such as Britain, France, Sweden and Western social-democracies in general, among others.

The paragraph includes the following footnotes:


Barrett, William, ed. (1 April 1978). "Capitalism, Socialism, and Democracy: A Symposium". Commentary. Retrieved 14 June 2020. "If we were to extend the definition of socialism to include Labor Britain or socialist Sweden, there would be no difficulty in refuting the connection between capitalism and democracy."
  • Fleming, Richard Fleming (1989). "Lenin's Conception of Socialism: Learning from the early experiences of the world's first socialist revolution". Forward. 9 (1). Retrieved 27 December 2015.
  • Jump up to:Lenin Collected Works. 27: 293. Quoted by Aufheben. Archived 18 March 2004 at the Wayback Machine.
  • Jump up to:Heilbroner, Robert L. (Winter 1991). "From Sweden to Socialism: A Small Symposium on Big Questions". Dissident. Barkan, Joanne; Brand, Horst; Cohen, Mitchell; Coser, Lewis; Denitch, Bogdan; Fehèr, Ferenc; Heller, Agnès; Horvat, Branko; Tyler, Gus. pp. 96–110. Retrieved 17 April 2020.
  • Jump up to: Kendall, Diana (2011). Sociology in Our Time: The Essentials. Cengage Learning. pp. 125–127. ISBN 9781111305505. "Sweden, Great Britain, and France have mixed economies, sometimes referred to as democratic socialism—an economic and political system that combines private ownership of some of the means of production, governmental distribution of some essential goods and services, and free elections. For example, government ownership in Sweden is limited primarily to railroads, mineral resources, a public bank, and liquor and tobacco operations."
  • Jump up to: Li, He (2015). Political Thought and China's Transformation: Ideas Shaping Reform in Post-Mao China. Springer. pp. 60–69. ISBN 9781137427816. "The scholars in camp of democratic socialism believe that China should draw on the Sweden experience, which is suitable not only for the West but also for China. In the post-Mao China, the Chinese intellectuals are confronted with a variety of models. The liberals favor the American model and share the view that the Soviet model has become archaic and should be totally abandoned. Meanwhile, democratic socialism in Sweden provided an alternative model. Its sustained economic development and extensive welfare programs fascinated many. Numerous scholars within the democratic socialist camp argue that China should model itself politically and economically on Sweden, which is viewed as more genuinely socialist than China. There is a growing consensus among them that in the Nordic countries the welfare state has been extraordinarily successful in eliminating poverty."
« Last Edit: September 25, 2021, 12:51:39 PM by Brian Stoffregen »
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

peter_speckhard

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Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« Reply #26 on: September 25, 2021, 01:23:50 PM »
Brian, by your definitions every government is by definition socialists, as is every family, church, and club. Everybody is in favor of voluntary socialism. It is involuntary socialism, I.e. imposed by the coercive power of state that is contrary to liberty. 

DeHall1

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Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« Reply #27 on: September 25, 2021, 01:31:13 PM »
In my understanding, the production and consumer prices are controlled by the community or the state. Socialism does not have to be controlled by the government. A farmers co-op that controls production and prices is socialism.


Wiki includes this description under Socialist State:


A socialist state is to be distinguished from a multi-party liberal democracy governed by a self-described socialist party, where the state is not constitutionally bound to the construction of socialism. In such cases, the political system and machinery of government is not specifically structured to pursue the development of socialism. Socialist states in the Marxist–Leninist sense are sovereign states under the control of a vanguard party which is organizing the country's economic, political and social development toward the realization of socialism. Economically, this involves the development of a state capitalist economy with state-directed capital accumulation with the long-term goal of building up the country's productive forces while simultaneously promoting world communism. Academics, political commentators and other scholars tend to distinguish between authoritarian socialist and democratic socialist states, with the first representing the Soviet Bloc and the latter representing Western Bloc countries which have been democratically governed by socialist parties such as Britain, France, Sweden and Western social-democracies in general, among others.

The paragraph includes the following footnotes:


Barrett, William, ed. (1 April 1978). "Capitalism, Socialism, and Democracy: A Symposium". Commentary. Retrieved 14 June 2020. "If we were to extend the definition of socialism to include Labor Britain or socialist Sweden, there would be no difficulty in refuting the connection between capitalism and democracy."
  • Fleming, Richard Fleming (1989). "Lenin's Conception of Socialism: Learning from the early experiences of the world's first socialist revolution". Forward. 9 (1). Retrieved 27 December 2015.
  • Jump up to:Lenin Collected Works. 27: 293. Quoted by Aufheben. Archived 18 March 2004 at the Wayback Machine.
  • Jump up to:Heilbroner, Robert L. (Winter 1991). "From Sweden to Socialism: A Small Symposium on Big Questions". Dissident. Barkan, Joanne; Brand, Horst; Cohen, Mitchell; Coser, Lewis; Denitch, Bogdan; Fehèr, Ferenc; Heller, Agnès; Horvat, Branko; Tyler, Gus. pp. 96–110. Retrieved 17 April 2020.
  • Jump up to: Kendall, Diana (2011). Sociology in Our Time: The Essentials. Cengage Learning. pp. 125–127. ISBN 9781111305505. "Sweden, Great Britain, and France have mixed economies, sometimes referred to as democratic socialism—an economic and political system that combines private ownership of some of the means of production, governmental distribution of some essential goods and services, and free elections. For example, government ownership in Sweden is limited primarily to railroads, mineral resources, a public bank, and liquor and tobacco operations."
  • Jump up to: Li, He (2015). Political Thought and China's Transformation: Ideas Shaping Reform in Post-Mao China. Springer. pp. 60–69. ISBN 9781137427816. "The scholars in camp of democratic socialism believe that China should draw on the Sweden experience, which is suitable not only for the West but also for China. In the post-Mao China, the Chinese intellectuals are confronted with a variety of models. The liberals favor the American model and share the view that the Soviet model has become archaic and should be totally abandoned. Meanwhile, democratic socialism in Sweden provided an alternative model. Its sustained economic development and extensive welfare programs fascinated many. Numerous scholars within the democratic socialist camp argue that China should model itself politically and economically on Sweden, which is viewed as more genuinely socialist than China. There is a growing consensus among them that in the Nordic countries the welfare state has been extraordinarily successful in eliminating poverty."


it's my understanding that "Wikipedia is not a reliable source for citations elsewhere on Wikipedia. Because it can be edited by anyone at any time, any information it contains at a particular time could be vandalism, a work in progress, or just plain wrong."   Of course, my source for this is Wikipedia, so.....it may not be reliable.

A farmers co-op (in the US) can decide what and how to produce, can retain the profit from selling whatever they produce (no matter how it's divided internally), and can sell the cooperative to ANOTHER owner, if they chose to do so.

That's typical capitalism, not socialism.


With regard to Sweden, I defer to former Prime Minister of Sweden, Carl Bildt, not Wikipedia.    Sweden, of course, has more billionaires per capita than the US. 

To each his own.
« Last Edit: September 25, 2021, 03:30:14 PM by DeHall1 »

Charles Austin

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Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« Reply #28 on: September 25, 2021, 02:17:38 PM »
The Scandinavian countries And some countries on the European continent have had, for a long time, a relatively homogeneous population, and a reasonably good, sometimes booming economy. Furthermore, they have virtually made the decision to pay the high taxes, realizing what it gets them. Education through college. Healthcare. Employment security. Special benefits for children and people in special needs.
And of course, they are dealing with much smaller numbers in terms of population than we are.
What has always bothered me, even from an early age, is the fact that we in this country have enough resources to provide proper care for people in special needs and for the population in general, for instance, with regard to healthcare. We have, sort of, done a reasonable job with public education. But what if we done for healthcare? What have we done to provide the kind of support that people in dire and persistent poverty need? What have we done and retraining the unemployed for work with their previous industries no longer exist? What have we done for working mothers, especially single mothers?
What are we done in providing non-college vocational training?
It’s foolish to think we will give up free market capitalism as a basis for this country. But it is insane to look at efforts to provide needed help to our fellow citizens and get all bent out of shape because we fear it might be “Socialism.“
Retired ELCA Pastor. And some other things.

Charles Austin

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Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« Reply #29 on: September 25, 2021, 02:27:49 PM »
Peter’s phrase:
‘…imposed by the coercive power of state that is contrary to liberty.”

I ponder:
And just what is this “coercive power”? Passing laws? Federal regulations on such things as safety and health? Any kind of taxation, especially on businesses and industries? Exactly how is this “coercive power” exercise?
And “contrary to liberty”. What kind of liberty? To whose liberty, the liberty of people with money? We all want some “liberties”that are not good or healthy for our neighbors.
If one chooses to reside in this country, is one not voluntarily accepting how this country decides it will order itself?
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