Hmm, Correlation or Causation?…and why I care

From the WSJ

But the data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics show that, in 2010, the year ObamaCare passed, full-time employment grew at an average monthly rate of 114,000 while part-time employment dropped an average of 6,000 a month. So far this year, as ObamaCare is being implemented, full-time employment has grown at an average monthly rate of 21,700 while part-time employment has increased an average of 93,000 a month.

Now one can fairly ask why a church website would point something like this out. It could be: 1) I’m just a religious right nutjob that has confused the GOP for the gospel, 2) I hate poor people and don’t understand the prophetic call to the poor, the fatherless, the widow and the alien in our midst, 3) I’m a religious masochist pining for the days when nobody had healthcare and we all faced death and babies without any caring professions help because suffering focuses the mind on things eternal. Or, it could be none of those things (hint, hint).

Let me explain.
1) Occam’s razor. There is a place for the federal government. That place is according to the preamble (half sung to the Schoolhouse rock tune in my gen-x head) is: “establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare and secure the blessings of liberty”. The government’s purpose is to rule fairly applying the same law to the poor and the great (Leviticus 19:15). The government provides the framework that citizens agree to live within. And for a nation of 300 million of various peoples, languages, tribes and nations, that framework should be remarkably simple. Otherwise you get into the position where we are now that rent seeking (gaming rules and loopholes) is more profitable than actually working. The quote above highlights the reaction of businesses logically gaming a complex system, and it will get worse.

2) The law (not this specific law but the law in general) has three uses: civil or curb, moral or mirror and spiritual or rule(r). None of those purposes is salvation. When the preamble says establish justice or promote the general welfare or ensure the blessings of liberty it is poetically talking about placing a legal curb. You can jump the curb if you insist, but only heartbreak lies beyond it. The story that the American founders understood is that the curb is best placed at a minimum level allowing the maximum amount of liberty. Calvin’s Geneva and every established religion has attempted to use the government as a teaching tool erecting mirrors to show sin and often enforcing the rule(r) which is only available to those who have the Holy Spirit. That is a mistake of the tool. That is attempting to use an instrument of law (government) as an instrument of the gospel. At least Calvin and company had the correct gospel. Today we are attempting to enforce a material salvation/a material gospel through tools of the law. That can’t help but come to grief.

3) One of the greatest blessings of the modern world had been the full-time 40 hour work week. The teacher in Ecclesiastes, in the midst of all the vanity, recognizes the gift of work. “There is nothing better for a person than that he should eat and drink and find enjoyment in his toil.” (Ecclesiastes 2:24) He echoes it three times: Ecclesiastes 3:12-13 and Ecclesiastes 5:18-20 being the other two. There is an old german phrase: kinder, kuche, kirche – kids, kitchen, church. The 40 hour week had secured a balance for those most important things, Ecclesiastes’ eat, drink, toil and blessing from God. All of our misuse of the law making it easier to game the system than actually work has killed that gift. This law will enshrine a divide amongst our people that will teach a bad lesson. Notice that the teacher doesn’t distinguish work from work. Work, what is given, is a gift. The law as constructed will teach that there is good work, that which will hire you full time, and bad work, that which will only hire you for 20 hours. It will teach contrary to the truth and move the very people it wants to protect (the poor) away from the blessings of labor.

So in summary: This law increases our biggest problem that the incentives to gaming the system are currently greater than the incentives to work, especially for the smart and already rich. Going to Washington and lobbying is more profitable than producing a new product or service. This law confuses the proper role of the government creating a confusion of law and gospel. This law hurts the very people it is suppose to serve and puts us on a path to teaching very dangerous lies.

Now to hit the other side, the formal GOP has not proposed a real alternative. It should. It is possible to do this simply and with an eye to those currently excluded. Here is Dr. Ben Carson, Johns Hopkins Brain Surgeon, from earlier this year giving the outline in about 2 minutes.