Sunday, December 7, 2008

Ben Stein's Smarts and God's Wisdom - Ben on Friday's Medved's Show

Michael Medved was surprised in a discussion of federal stimuli and bailouts on Friday, to hear the reaction of Ben Stein who is accomplished on many fronts and traditionally a Republican. He is also the son of noted Republican economist, Herb Stein. I was not surprised. Stein supports both a huge stimulus and a bailout of the auto companies. Taxes or debt aren’t necessary: just print the money, he says. I have heard Stein say these things many times. He also says the very wealthy must be taxed to provide health care for those who can’t afford it. That’s a noble sentiment, but it has practical problems. It’s a disincentive to achieve and a disincentive to attentive and innovative health care. But I think there is a conflict buried at the bottom of Stein’s sentiments on this and the matter subsequently discussed.

There was also a brief discussion about one specific (there were many, Republican and Democrat) criticism of Republican politicians like Sarah Palin and Bobby Jindal who supposedly do not accept evolution. I say supposedly because I haven’t heard Jindal opine on the matter (perhaps he has, but surely any uncertainty about that reflects the absolute FACT that the question is utterly irrelevant to national politics) and Palin has said specifically that evolution should be taught in schools. I agree that it should be, simply as a matter of understanding Western culture. But whatever any politician may say, let’s just bring the matter home. Though I think schools should teach evp;ution (though not as FACT in my school district), I explicitly do NOT believe in evolution as a sufficient explanation for all of life on earth. I will also say that I am not philosophically resistant to the possibility of evolution being an explanation for all earthly life. Yes, I believe in God and the truths of The Bible. But, I wouldn’t lose those beliefs if I thought the case for an evolutionary explanation was compelling. I simply don’t find it compelling at all but rather find it feeble as persuasion. I’m not forced to cling to it by a philosophical commitment to deny creation.

Stein of course finds the evolution case at least eminently questionable, for those of you whose heads have been so otherwise occupied as to be entirely unfamiliar with the movie, “Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed,” which Stein hosted and which laments the resistance of the public science establishment to even the SUGGESTION of the possibility of an intelligent designer of either life or the cosmos. If I say a (now non-existent – I’m not holding my breath) demonstrable truth of evolution would not disturb my faith in God, it appears the same cannot be said of the doctrinaire evolutionists as to their faith. That just affirms that for them the issue is not one of empirical data, but rather one of naturalist philosophical dogma: intelligent design is beyond their consideration because the idea challenges evolution. I don’t, but many noted scholars who advocate intelligent design, believe that design was expressed through evolution.

Anyway, I question Stein’s sincere conviction that there must be a huge stimulus and bailouts of large industries on the basis of my belief that the prods of a free market are part of God’s design, just as is biological life. Let’s stipulate some things: Ben Stein is intelligent and accomplished. I’m a disabled ex-salesman. They shouldn’t command it anyway, but in this case clearly I’m not pleading credentials. Just as in any other case, I only plead consideration of my words, themselves. I have heard Stein express several times that the very rich have the money to finance what are some worthy needs, and these specific actions are necessary to avoid economic pain. He’s correct about that, but that isn’t the entire story. However he might distinguish it, this is essentially the argument advanced by liberals to defend most all of the projects they find so urgent. In fact, when Medved pressed Stein to name a politician who agrees with his prescription, the only name that he mentioned was Barney Frank. Ouch!? Stein admitted creating the money would be inflationary, and it is so by definition. But, he said the effect was outweighed by the urgency of sparing the pain of the alternative, whether unemployment or tight credit.

After Stein’s schedule dictated his departure, Medved did say that he opposed those economic matters advocated by Stein because they reward failure and punish success, which is true. Medved also said that what rich people do with their money if they keep it, is invest it. Stein countered that there is enough money to invest out there, but it is held because of fear. He's right that money would be freed if fear were relieved. But incremental money above what some projects demand, is also invested. The only thing better for an economy than money invested is more money invested.

But there are more reasons that I believe inhere in human nature that those prescriptions are wrong. Specifically, I believe there is no prod to achieve success and/or to avoid failure like the very pain that Stein seeks to alleviate. I’m not saying that those who are experiencing difficulty should not be helped. They should be, by private individuals and organizations; but not by government. To make such aid the presumptive duty of government removes the urgency to succeed or avoid failure. On a micro scale, it’s the same reason that government bailouts and subsidies are not constructive things for large commercial organizations. This is a disincentive to achieve for one’s family, which both will reduce the general product of society and also preclude the pride and accomplishment of having done so. All of that in addition to the monetary inflation and generally weak monetary policy.

Just as Stein believes as I do that the biological world evinces a stunning complexity and elegance reflective of design, so these prods and rewards are inherent in human society, having been built into the system of human society by the very same designer. None of this is accidental or without purpose. As in most things, when government imposes itself upon the system it more often than not corrupts it. It not only corrupts but devalues the system: the true fulfillment and reward of work is diminished and the value of true charity is all but lost.

76 comments:

bobxxxx said...

Though I think schools should teach evolution (though not as FACT in my school district), I explicitly do NOT believe in evolution as a sufficient explanation for all of life on earth.

You're not qualified to make that decision because you're scientifically illiterate.

Larry said...

bobxxxx :

Man, what a novel response! Actually it's an utterly predictable and yes, illiterate one in itself. I have no idea who you are, but chances are well over 99% that I have more familiarity with the literature on both sides of the discussion than you do.

What most people who make statements of the sort that you have are doing is asserting what is for them, a tautology: Because a priori they believe as you do, they suppose that any question of evolution is by definition iliterate. Here's what I know for a fact: Many, many people on both sides of the discussion are indeed very literate and even genius. If you are not aware of that it is you who is literarily impoverished, notwithstanding that your statement coarsely mirrors that of a few supposed "luminaries," like Richard Dawkins. I believe there are many much more lucid and thoughtful proponents of evolution than is Dawkins, who I find argumentatively feeble.

If you are assured of your perspective and happen to return, you are quite welcome to actually put forward your best case, which is thus far entirely absent.

Before I posted this comment, I foll;owed your ID to the TalkOrigens web site which I have seen many times before. But I could not identify you, specificaly, though the link to the site suggests that you are likely at least incrementally more exposed to data than the average individual, however low a bar that may be to clear. In any case, my invitation to elaborate and engage stands.

Larry said...

bobxxxx :

I did Google bobxxxx and found some...amusing...links, which also suggested some wandering through the evolutionist brush. But, I was still unable to ascertain more than that you are 59 years old, which at least makes you the elder that this 51-year old should honor: that's honor, not blindly believe.

Walt said...

Larry,
"Don't cast your pearls before swine." Bobxxxx is a troll, and adds absolutely nothing to any argument. I have run across him before. His idea of an intellectual exchange is "I don't believe in the Tooth fairy either." And the like. He is like junk mail in your inbox...just delete him and no one will loose any sleep...he even makes the evolutionists look bad.

Borghesius said...

Joseph Borghese, B.S. Physics John Carroll University 1986. M. Arch. Ohio State University 1989.
Scientifically Literate, but this is actually about the Philosophy of Science, more about how we know what we know. By "sufficient explanation" I expect you mean more than the highly improbable mechanisms to also include the why, meaning of life, existence of conscienceness, soul, all that stuff. You will find that scientists outside of their fields of specialty are as ignorant as anyone else, which always may me scorn the "Union of Concerned Scientists" mis-applying their authority to social/political issues. It is actually similar to actors/actresses (sometimes experts at projecting emotions and technical stagecraft) opining about whatever else.

Larry said...

Joseph:

You're correct of course, that the debate over ID is about the philosophy of science and the construction of epistemologies and ontologies, but it is the secularists themselves who argue that this as about science and/or the ignorance thereof. Some of these, like Daniel Dennett, surely know better. Christopher Hitchens has piddled around philosophy but I think is prevailingly motivated by animosity more than reason. Richard Dawkins, alas, appears mired in ineptitude in that regard. If not, he is not much letting on. The better to intimidate the layman reader who certainly does not know better?

Walt said...

For those of you with a desire to learn, check out the works of Dr. Robert Gentry. His works do not address evolution directly but he does bring more than serious doubt to the scientific community and the assumptions they base their theories upon. His findings relegate the "Big Bang" theory to the shelf of wisdom that is occupied by other bright ideas like bleeding the sick, and the earth being flat.

Borghesius said...

Hey, there's nothing like a pint bloodletting from the Red Cross followed by a glass of good wine or fine ale to adjust the Humours. Then I just lay on my back and watch the sun revolve around the earth.

Larry said...

Thanks Walt. I have a page open on Gentry.

I've been mostly reading, for the past few days. But, I was just reading some remarks on Colin Powell's comments about what The Republican Party needs to do. Powell seems like a good and decent fellow. But particularly socially wise or politically lucid, he is not. Anyway, I'm still busy reading. But, I'll probably post a quick comment onm Powell and counsel such as his. He isn't the only one with short-sighted and foolish advice for The Republican Party.

Anonymous said...

government registry -
heartburn no more -
homemadeenergy -
home made energy -
hyper vre -
i software tv -
legit online jobs -
linden method -
london forex rush -
master word smith -
maternityacupressure -
maternity acupressure -
max pro system -
meet your sweet -
membership gold rush -
minute sites -
musclegainingsecrets -
muscle gaining secrets -
negative calorie diet -
one minute cure -
one week marketing -
pc on point -
pc tv 4 me -
perfect optimizer -
php link cloaker -
pick the gender of your baby -
profit lance -
public records pro -
quit smoking today -
recipe secrets -
reg clean -
regi cleanse -
registry easy -
registry winner -

Anonymous said...

reg sweep -
reverse mobile -
reverse phone detective -
richard mackenzie direct -
rocket piano -
rocket spanish -
satellite tv to pc -
smtp 2 go -
spam bully -
spyware nuker -
the bad breath report -
thedietsolutionprogram -
the diet solution program -
the stop snoring exercise program -
the super mind evolution system -
trading stock indices -
truth about abs -
turbulencetraining -
turbulence training -
twitter annihilation -
twitter rockstar -
twitter traffic machine -
ultimate content creator -
ultimate font download -
ultimate wow guide -
video piggy -
vincedelmontefitness -
vince del monte fitness -
warp speed fat loss -
web investigator -
win clear -
win spy -
yeast infection no more -

Anonymous said...

3d covers -
500 scrapbooking sketches -
acid alkaline diet -
acne free in 3 days -
advanced pc tweaker -
apple patch diet -
art of approaching -
auction inspector -
av advance -
build a nice store -
burnthefat -
burn the fat -
carb rotation diet -
catch spouse cheating -
chikara reiki do -
combat the fat -
conversationalhypnosis -
conversational hypnosis -
copy that game -
cure gout now -
dl guard -
dog training online -
driver checker -
driver robot -
drop shipping wholesalers -
earth4energy -
earth 4 energy -

Anonymous said...

easy backup wizard -
eatstopeat -
eat stop eat -
error fix -
error killer -
error smart -
evidence eraser -
evidence nuker -
ex girlfriend guru -
fatburningfurnace -
fat burning furnace -
fatloss4idiots -
fat loss 4 idiots -
final uninstaller -
fitnessmodelprogram -
fitness model program -
fit yummy yummy -
flattenyourabs -
flatten your abs -
flat to fab -
forex grid bot -
get google ads free -
get paid to draw -
get this off my chest now -
governmentregistry -
government registry -
heartburn no more -
homemadeenergy -
home made energy -
honest riches -
learn photoshop now -
linden method -
malware removal bot -
marketing on the fringe -

Anonymous said...

maternityacupressure -
maternity acupressure -
meet your sweet -
musclegainingsecrets -
muscle gaining secrets -
my online income system -
negative calorie diet -
no adware -
one minute cure -
one week marketing -
online pickup secrets -
partenon -
pc on point -
perfect optimizer -
perfect uninstaller -
pick the gender of your baby -
power cash secret -
profit lance -
publicrecordspro -
public records pro -
push button marketer -
quit smoking today -
registry easy -
registry easy download -
registry fix -
registry winner download -
reverse mobile -
reverse phone detective -
richard mackenzie direct -
rocket spanish -
rss power plus -
sem business blueprint -
silent sales machine -
spam bully -

Anonymous said...

sports betting champ -
spyware cease -
spyware nuker -
spyware remover -
starting a day care center -
the bad breath report -
the cb code -
thedietsolutionprogram -
the diet solution program -
the super mind evolution system -
traffic travis -
truth about abs -
turbulencetraining -
turbulence training -
twitter affiliate cash -
twitter decoded -
video piggy -
video web wizard -
vincedelmontefitness -
vince del monte fitness -
warp speed fat loss -
wedding speech 4u -
windo fix -
your bill killer -
you will get paid -
zygor guides -
20 day persuasion -
advanced pc tweaker -
adware bot -
affiliate naire -
apple patch diet -
article submitter -
art of approaching -
burnthefat -

Anonymous said...

burn the fat -
carb rotation diet -
cold sore freedom in 3 days -
conversationalhypnosis -
conversational hypnosis -
copy that game -
cure for bruxism -
cure hemorrhoids -
cyber link pro -
dl guard -
driver checker -
driver robot -
drop shipping wholesalers -
earth4energy -
earth 4 energy -
easy backup wizard -
easy click mate -
easy photo biz -
eatstopeat -
eat stop eat -
epinoisis -
error fix -
error killer -
error smart -
evidence nuker -
fap turbo -
fatburningfurnace -
fat burning furnace -
fatloss4idiots -
fat loss 4 idiots -
final uninstaller -
fitnessmodelprogram -
fitness model program -
fit yummy yummy -

Anonymous said...

flattenyourabs -
flatten your abs -
flat to fab -
governmentregistry -
government registry -
heartburn no more -
hippo jaw -
homemadeenergy -
home made energy -
honest riches -
hot video squeeze templates -
instant website creation -
jump manual -
keyword research pro -
linden method -
malware removal bot -
maternityacupressure -
maternity acupressure -
meet your sweet -
micro niche finder -
musclegainingsecrets -
muscle gaining secrets -
muscle gain truth -
my traffic strategy -
nasty dirty money -
negative calorie diet -
no adware -
pc optimizer pro -
perfect uninstaller -
pergola plans -
pick the gender of your bady -
plr ebook club -
pregnancy without pounds -
profit lance -

Anonymous said...

publicrecordspro -
public records pro -
questions for couples -
quit smoking today -
ready made review sites -
reg genie -
registry easy -
registry easy download -
registry winner -
registry winner download -
retrievea lover -
reverse mobile -
richard mackenzie direct -
rocket italian -
rocket spanish -
roulette sniper -
rss ground -
secret affiliate weapon -
secrets book -
spam bully -
spyware cease -
spyware nuker -
spyware remover -
spy zooka -
starting a day care center -
tattoo fever -
team idemise -
the bad breath report -
the cb code -
thedietsolutionprogram -
the diet solution program -
the rich jerk -
the super mind evolution system -
turbulencetraining -

Anonymous said...

turbulence training -
vincedelmontefitness -
vince del monte fitness -
warp speed fat loss -
wedding speech 4u -
windo fix -
wrap candy -
zygor guides -
7day ebook -
360 fix kit -
advanced pc tweaker -
adware bot -
affiliate naire -
art of approaching -
beating adwords -
believe and manifest -
blogging in action -
body building revealed -
burthefat -
burn the fat -
carb rotation diet -
cheat your way thin -
cold sore freedom in 3 days -
conversationalhypnosis -
conversational hypnosis -
convert 2 ev -
cure for bruxism -
cure hemorrhoids -
digi cam cash -
digital media solution -
dl guard -
driver checker -
earth4energy -
earth 4 energy -

Anonymous said...

easy backup wizard -
easy member pro -
easy tv soft -
eatstopeat -
eat stop eat -
error fix -
error killer -
evidence nuker -
fap turbo -
fatburningfurnace -
fat burning furnace -
fatloss4idiots -
fat loss 4 idiots -
final uninstaller -
fitnessmodelprogram -
fitness model program -
flatten your abs -
gamers testing ground -
gov auction -
governmentregistry -
government registry -
gov records -
herbal hair solution -
homebre ware -
home job group -
homemadeenergy -
home made energy -
inteli gator -
joanas world -
joyful tomato -
kidney stone remedy -
learn digital photography now -
learn elements now -
linden method -

Anonymous said...

order xanax online xanax 5mg effects - xanax dosage to get high

Anonymous said...

generic zolpidem what is zolpidem 10mg - zolpidem 5mg tablets picture

Anonymous said...

where to buy zolpidem side effects stopping zolpidem - zolpidem tartrate long term effects

Anonymous said...

diazepam online diazepam 5mg dose - diazepam 2 mg how long to take effect

Anonymous said...

zolpidem drug generic ambien shape - how much does ambien cr cost without insurance

Anonymous said...

cheap generic xanax xanax withdrawal memory loss - xanax side effects nausea

Anonymous said...

buy diazepam buy valium online overnight - diazepam drug misuse

Anonymous said...

diazepam 5mg where can i buy valium in uk - buy valium prescription free

Anonymous said...

zolpidem online price for zolpidem tartrate - side effects of zolpidem tartrate tablets

Anonymous said...

buy valium online valium high last - valium drug identification

Anonymous said...

zolpidem no prescription zolpidemtart - order ambien online is it legal

Anonymous said...

buy xanax online cod xanax overdose how many mg - best way pass drug test xanax

Anonymous said...

buy diazepam online diazepam 5 mg efectos secundarios - buy liquid diazepam

Anonymous said...

xanax anxiety does generic xanax look like - buy xanax online cheap

Anonymous said...

ativan medication generic medication ativan - lorazepam hexal 1 mg

Anonymous said...

what does diazepam look like buy diazepam forum - buy valium online overnight delivery

Anonymous said...

buy zolpidem online ambien side effects next day nausea - ambien ibuprofen drug interactions

Anonymous said...

soma for sale carisoprodol dosage 700 - does generic soma look like

Anonymous said...

ambien generic generic ambien cr so expensive - generic version ambien cr

Anonymous said...

valium without prescription valium or xanax high - drug interactions xanax valium

Anonymous said...

order soma online soma 12 panel drug test - carisoprodol mixed with vicodin

Anonymous said...

Blogger: Stranger In A Foreign Land - Post a Comment cheap soma online - generic soma online http://www.emprendiendoideas.com/#generic-soma-online

Anonymous said...

Blogger: Stranger In A Foreign Land - Post a Comment reductil online - meridia price http://www.meridiaordernow.com/#meridia-price

Anonymous said...

Blogger: Stranger In A Foreign Land - Post a Comment buy acomplia no prescription - acomplia price http://www.a6soft.com/#acomplia-price

Anonymous said...

Blogger: Stranger In A Foreign Land - Post a Comment rimonabant online - acomplia 20mg http://www.a6soft.com/#acomplia-20mg

Anonymous said...

Blogger: Stranger In A Foreign Land - Post a Comment soma medication - carisoprodol no prescription http://www.emprendiendoideas.com/#carisoprodol-no-prescription

Anonymous said...

Blogger: Stranger In A Foreign Land - Post a Comment buy cheap meridia - order sibutramine http://www.meridiaordernow.com/#order-sibutramine

Anonymous said...

Blogger: Stranger In A Foreign Land - Post a Comment cheap ativan online - ativan medication for anxiety http://www.ativanonlineoffer.com/#ativan-medication-for-anxiety

Anonymous said...

Hi, MoxoredapeTox ambien online without rx - ambien cost http://topandhra.com/#ambien-cost

Anonymous said...

Hi, MoxoredapeTox buy generic ambien - generic ambien cost http://topandhra.com/#generic-ambien-cost

Anonymous said...

Hi, MoxoredapeTox cheap ambien online - order zolpidem http://topandhra.com/#order-zolpidem

Anonymous said...

Drug Soundas prednisone medication - prednisone no prescription http://www.prednisone4sale.com/#prednisone-no-prescription

Anonymous said...

Famous Quotes Medicine prednisone medication - prednisone no prescription http://www.prednisone4sale.com/#prednisone-no-prescription

Anonymous said...

Hello, buy generic ambien online - ambien for sale no prescription http://topandhra.com/#ambien-for-sale-no-prescription

Anonymous said...

Hello, order propecia online - propecia online pharmacy http://www.wheretobuymedsonline.com/propecia/

Anonymous said...

Hello, buy cheap azithromycin - azithromycin sale http://www.zithromaxonlineprice.com/#azithromycin-sale

Anonymous said...

Hello, sumatriptan without prescription - generic imitrex no prescription http://www.oparticular.net/#generic-imitrex-no-prescription

Anonymous said...

Hello, generic lipitor without prescription - buy lipitor no prescription http://www.costoflipitoronline.net/#buy-lipitor-no-prescription

Anonymous said...

advitleva quetiapine no prescription - quetiapine online http://www.seroqueldiscounts.com/

Anonymous said...

advitleva buy seroquel online - buy quetiapine http://www.seroqueldiscounts.com/

Anonymous said...

dalsCleax order atomoxetine online - order atomoxetine http://www.stratterabestprice.com/#order-atomoxetine

Anonymous said...

dalsCleax buy furosemide without prescription - cheap furosemide no prescription http://www.lasixonlinesale.com/#cheap-furosemide-no-prescription

Anonymous said...

dalsCleax valium online - buy valium online http://www.diazepamonlinesale.com/#buy-valium-online

Anonymous said...

dalsCleax cipro online pharmacy - cost of ciprofloxacin http://www.ciproonlinerx.com/#cost-of-ciprofloxacin

Anonymous said...

Blogger: Stranger In A Foreign Land - Post a Comment doxycycline 100mg for sale - generic doxycycline no prescription http://www.doxycyclinecheaporder.net/#generic-doxycycline-no-prescription , cost of doxycycline 100mg

Anonymous said...

Aurangzeb And Rehman Drug Trafficking fluconazole diflucan - diflucan pills http://www.diflucansaleonline.net/#diflucan-pills , [url=http://www.diflucansaleonline.net/#where-to-buy-diflucan ]where to buy diflucan [/url]

Anonymous said...

Love Medicine Miracles buy lexapro online no prescription - cheap escitalopram http://www.costoflexaproonline.net/#cheap-escitalopram , [url=http://www.costoflexaproonline.net/#cheap-lexapro ]cheap lexapro [/url]

Anonymous said...

Ornish And Preventive Medicine Institute escitalopram cost - escitalopram no prescription http://www.costoflexaproonline.net/#escitalopram-no-prescription , [url=http://www.costoflexaproonline.net/#escitalopram-online ]escitalopram online [/url]

Anonymous said...

Mirena Pain Medicine buy cheap sibutramine - cheap reductil http://www.meridiaonlineorder.net/#cheap-reductil , reductil for sale

Anonymous said...

1, order celebrex online - buy celebrex celecoxib 200mg http://www.celebrexgenericsale.net/celebrex_information.html, order celebrex

Anonymous said...

tfv generic plavix cost - purchase plavix http://www.plavixbuynow.net/#cheap-plavix, [url=http://www.plavixbuynow.net/#cheap-plavix]buy plavix online no prescription [/url]

Anonymous said...

tfv price of generic lipitor - buy lipitor online no prescription http://www.lipitordiscountonline.net/#lipitor-online, price of lipitor

Anonymous said...

ooo!!! Buy Topamax - buy topamax without prescription http://www.topamaxbestonline.net/#order-topamax, Topamax Online

Anonymous said...

Hi, clonazepam for sale - order clonazepam online no prescription http://hernanicardoso.com/, cheap clonazepam

Anonymous said...

2, Zoloft Online - Cheap Zoloft - order sertraline online http://www.zolofthelpsleep.net/.

Anonymous said...

Thе wrіte-up offers established helρful to us.

It’s vеry informatіve and you're simply obviously really experienced in this area. You get exposed my personal eye for you to various thoughts about this topic using intriquing, notable and sound content.

My website; buy Xanax