Thursday, June 12, 2014

David Brat's Christian Capitalism must face its own contradictions, but the Hitler idea means something

So what will happen in a GOP controlled House now that Eric Cantor will be gone?  I, for one, had not known that Cantor was Jewish.  I hadn’t heard much about the “Christian activism” of the (“Tea Party”) economics professor David Brat.  I voted (in the Democratic) primary Tuesday, and, no, this time, I did not volunteer to work a 16 hour day as an election judge.  It hadn’t occurred to me that Democrats could silently change registration to throw Cantor out.
Will we see more brinksmanship about Obamacare and the debt ceiling?   Maybe we will see more nitpicking about what the legal consequences of missing it really would be.
I get Dave Brat’s comments about “Christian Capitalism” to a point.  China is better off now than it was before as a “People’s Republic of Capitalism” as is Russia, maybe.  Does that mean he supports a kind of Christian social authoritarianism to socialize men into families?  He criticizes morally inconsistent positions on both the Left and Right, but most of us have been saying the same things since the early 1990s. 
It’s interesting that he warns that another Hitler could arise.  Some would say that Vladimir Putin in Russia is already approaching that model.  Is he getting at a seeming contradiction in hyperindividualism, which seems determined to let people who “fail” wither and die?  All political and social systems have to deal with the fact that some people perform better in life than others because of factors beyond individual control.  There is the idea of Christian fellowship and “loving everybody” and putting a certain kind of emotion into it (particularly evident in evangelical or Pentecostal Christianity), but then that dilutes the passion necessary within family, at least sometimes.  

The Wall Street Journal has a story (by Reid J. Epstein) on the Hitler allusion  What society does – what individuals do – with people who are “less competitive” can have a real bearing on a society’s resistance to future totalitarianism.  

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