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Thursday, March 22, 2012

2012: The Year The Music Died

I got into a debate about who was the best Presidential candidate.

To be quite honest, I'm not sure that it matters.

Oh, sure, we can do better or worse in the short term with one versus the other, but in the long-term? Yeah, in the long-term, we're dead.

We can argue economic policy and governmental policy all day long.
Those things are important.
But none of them matter if we don't solve the social problems.

Indeed, if the social issues aren't solved, the economic issues will get worse. This is a very simple problem, a problem that neither the Republicans nor the Democrats nor the Libertarians want to solve. The United States is not pro-natalist. That's the source of all problems. As long as we aren't having babies, as long as we promote sterility whether by homosexuality or contraception or whatever, any change in economic policy is just moving deck chairs around.

We can only pay illegals to have our babies for us for so long - at some point, they will stop coming in because there isn't any advantage to having babies here versus having babies in Mexico or Central America or wherever. As soon as they stop providing us with children, we're dead.

Dueling Worldviews
The Catholic Church fought dueling for a thousand years before it finally fell out of common social usage. She condemned the joust in the 1100s and was still answering dubia about duelling in the 1860s. It wasn't until the culture changed from being honor-based to being money-based that duelling stopped.

Dueling didn't stop because the Church condemned it or because people became "anti-dueling" or "pro-life". It stopped because people stopped valuing honor so highly. They were no longer willing to kill to preserve it.

Dueling was a consequence of living in an honor-based society.

Same with being pro-natalist.
In order to be pro-natalist, the society has to value babies as a very high, if not the highest, good.
But when honor fell out of favor in this society, honor wasn't replaced with babies or with considerations of future generations. Honor was replaced with money.

The country isn't anti-natalist because it hates babies.
It is anti-natalist because it doesn't see the money-value of babies.
That is, when given a choice between making a baby and making a buck, most people choose the avenue that will turn them the buck.

Even when women choose to stay at home, many of them choose to do so BECAUSE IT IS CHEAPER than earning that second income, getting taxed on it, and paying for the child care. The time-value of money is now higher than the time-value of a baby, and this culture cares about time-value. So I don't care how pro-life people get in their survey answers. They aren't going to have babies because they are too busy trying to earn the next buck. The money is worth more than the baby.

A Slave of Mammon
Consider another example. Look at how William Wilberforce got slavery outlawed. Slavery wasn't making much money for England as a whole, but it WAS making a lot of money for a small, entrenched government interest group. That group successfully blocked ALL direct anti-slavery legislation.

Wilberforce finally beating them by passing an obscure shipping regulation which bled the money out of the trade. Now, if English culture had held slavery to be actually valuable, that law would have been amended to allow slavery to continue, and Wilbeforce's success would have been very temporary.

But, since slavery wasn't held to be socially valuable, the small, entrenched pro-slavery group was unable to get the law amended.

Notice: whether the law was pro-slavery or anti-slavery was of absolutely no concern to the larger society. No one else cared enough about the issue one way or the other to actually change the law.

So Wilberforce found it nearly impossible to change the law to be anti-slavery. Once it was changed, his opponents found it absolutely impossible to change it back to being pro-slavery.

The Problem With Going Back to the Future
The same is true in America about babies.
The problem isn't with pro- or anti-natalist legislation.
It's that no one cares enough about babies to actually have any.
We are too self-involved, too oriented towards turning the next buck.

And, given the growth of technology, are people becoming MORE or LESS self-involved as the years rush by? Let's put it another way: isn't Facebook primarily the quintessence of self-involvement - superseded only by Twitter?

I don't see how the fight to turn America pro-natalist takes less than several centuries.
It took the Industrial Revolution to destroy the honor-based society that encouraged dueling.
It will take a similar revolution to destroy the money-based that encourages sterility.

And, ultimately, when it comes to babies, societies can't afford centuries.

IF Santorum gets elected President
IF Santorum stays true to pro-life principles
MAYBE we have a chance.

But if Santorum does NOT get elected, then the country is not interested in the pro-natalist tag that is being hung around Santorum's neck (much to his chagrin). And that means America is going to the dogs.

And Santorum's chagrin is why I ultimately don't trust Santorum.

The press is trying to paint Santorum as (horrors!) an orthodox Catholic.

In his interviews, Santorum keeps denying that he is an orthodox Catholic, in the sense that whenever a news-babe puts him on the spot, he denies social policies are an important part of his agenda. That means even *HE* thinks he can't win on a pro-natalist platform.

Which means America loses this time around, no matter who wins.
We lose because our society isn't interested in the only winning strategy: babies.
We aren't interested in the best long-term investment any human being can make.

God promised that Catholic Faith would triumph.
He did not promise America would.

1 comment:

bobef said...

Today's American society is another example of broken human nature in action. We want happiness now and think more money will bring it. Having babies means less money to buy the stuff that makes us happy! Additionally, there's suffering involved with raising children, and who wants to suffer?

Looks to me like God is sounding the call to repentance, beginning with economic collapse. I suppose if we don't heed the message, then anarchy, tyranny, war are next. Maybe after the dust settles we'll value children again.