Both political conventions are over. They presented a stark contrast in both tone and vision. The first was at times fearful, intimidating, divisive, and deceptive. Almost all its 34 listed speakers were government officials telling us what we needed to do—a self-appointed ruling elite. The second offered a vision both hopeful and inclusive. Over half its 69 listed speakers were ordinary citizens. They offered personal testimony about the vision’s importance and effectiveness.
The first event’s speakers assured government would care for us. The second why enabling us to make more of our own decisions mattered. The first event left me with several nagging questions. Why the exclusion, anger, and lecturing? More importantly, why the lies?
Lies are morally wrong. God’s appointed us watchmen. Therefore, when we see something wrong, we have a duty to warn others. (Ezekiel 33:7-9) We are our brother’s keepers, and it makes a difference. This article lays out the case for the differences. The next examines some implications.
Most of the first event’s speakers possessed money, power, and position. While there was little they lacked, their words were empty and bitter. Why? Ideas shape our character. We are to offer ourselves as living sacrifices, a form of spiritual worship. We are to be transformed by, rather than conform to this world. (Rom. 12:1-2) When we conform to this world, we end up misusing wealth, position, and power. We focus on the material rather than the spiritual. James speaks to this.
You have lived luxuriously on the earth and led a life of wanton pleasure; you have fattened your hearts in a day of slaughter. You have condemned and put to death the righteous man; he does not resist you. (James 5:5-6)
They produce worldly fruit. But James also provides us an answer. We are to be patient as the prophets, and stay steadfast in God’s truth. By caring for each other we show God’s love.
Our choices transform us, be they good or bad. Good choices lead us toward more fully realizing God’s image. We grow in spirit. (2 Cor. 3:17-18). However, bad choices shift us toward the material. God allows us to make such choices. (Rom. 1:28-32) We lose our way, surrounding ourselves with like-minded people as bad company corrupts good morals. Instead we are to surround ourselves with the righteous. (2 Cor. 6:14-15)
Satan is the father of all lies. It is his nature. But making good choices requires discernment—the ability to distinguish between good and evil. Discernment is much needed today.
This tension in character plays itself out in society today, more than in a long time. We face some stark choices. But we cannot choose good if we do not recognize it. I only listened to part of the first event’s speakers, but was struck by the amount of misinformation presented. They lied. We’ll take a short look at a few specific examples.
I heard several times we weren’t prepared for the pandemic and have taken no action since. As for being unprepared, the previous administration left the cupboards bare. The current administration called upon businesses in a massive effort to successfully replenish and create a medical supply storehouse for the future.
As for actions, travel restrictions were quickly placed on areas where the virus was present. The administration recommended some common sense health measures in an effort to blunt the threat, which included not wearing masks. Plans were made and implemented to develop therapeutics and vaccines. They coordinated resources with the states to make sure they had the supplies and manpower needed. It deployed military resources to some locations where beds and medical personnel were in short supply. Daily briefings communicated and informed us about those and other actions. Therefore, the first events statements were lies.
Some More Lies
Initial scientific estimates for covid death were 2.2 million. So far there are less than 200,000. The CDC initially recommended no masks, but later changed its mind. Many governors were happy to comply, and almost six months later their orders are still in place. But there’s a problem. Masks don’t help. To date more than 80 studies indicate masks do not help with covid.
Therapeutics matter as much or more than vaccines. They prevent one from becoming ill, or assist in recovering. Several inexpensive treatments show promise against the virus. But scientists say only a vaccine will help. On the other hand, as of today 53 studies show hydroxychloroquine helps if administered early. There are only 14 showing this drug doesn’t help. The subjects in ten of these latter studies had advanced cases. No treatment would’ve worked for them—the study designs were biased. The subject groups in two others were unlikely to become ill. There was no upside potential in these studies—they too are biased. The final two came from a flawed Brazilian study, and one of those has been retracted. Our scientists are rejecting science, as are some of our state and CDC officials. This isn’t right. Why?
About 80% of all U.S. covid deaths have been 65 or older, and goes to 90% when you include those over 55. The elderly are most at risk. Many deaths occurred within our long-term care facilities. Some directly from governor’s actions. One example, New York governor Cuomo’s decision to house covid patients in state healthcare facilities. This put covid patients in the same facilities with those most at risk. Those deaths are on his hands. Why no outcry?
The deaths matter for another reason. Many governors used them to justify shutting-down their economies, closing churches, and restricting personal liberty. But generally, those most at risk are not actively working in the economy. This is at best insanity, and a grave misuse of power. Finally, lockdowns don’t work either. They are morally wrong and ineffective.
The first event’s speakers peddled the previous administration’s record economic and job growth achievements. But it’s not true. Clinton created more jobs, and Reagan a larger percentage of jobs. Obama ranks ninth on one list, and benefited from coming into office in the depths of a recession. Most noteworthy about the recovery under his watch was its lukewarm growth.
We can compare those achievements to the current administration’s record, before covid;
· Best low unemployment rate.
· Greatest employment level for many minorities and women.
· Record home ownership among many minority groups.
· Real pay increases for many workers for the first time in decades.
· Enacting a first step in justice reform, undoing harm done to the black community. (Biden supported the original legislation causing this harm.)
· Reforming the Veteran’s Administration.
· Supporting the education provided by black colleges.
Closing the Loop on Jobs
There are eight states whose governors did not follow the federal covid guidelines. All are doing much better than most states whose officials followed the herd. They did better both with the virus and minimizing its impact on their economies. The current economic slowdown is mostly self-inflicted. The product of state official’s decisions and policies. Why their support for actions that don’t work? Why are they punishing their citizens? Who is really denying the facts?
But let me close the loop on job creation. The current administration created 6.6 million jobs in its first three years. March and April of this year saw over 21 million jobs lost to the pandemic. Happily, July and August saw the recovery of over six million jobs—far faster than experts projected. Most of these losses were created by the way some governor’s responded to the pandemic. If yours did a bad job, then remove them from office. They didn’t give you the opportunity to control your own life.
There are many more areas I could cover, but the above are enough. I’ll just mention a couple other items. The first event’s speakers condemned the present administration as being exclusive—leaving many behind. The economic data above expose that narrative as another lie.
The first event’s speakers also criticized the use of federal resources to attack ‘peaceful protesters’. BLM and Antifa are anything but peaceful, as indicated by the rioting in New York, Portland, Chicago, D.C., Kenosha, and other Democrat controlled areas. Lawlessness leading to death and destruction primarily hurting minority communities and businesses. This too is wrong. Why this lie?
The first event’s speakers often referred to ‘The Plan’, so I took a look at it. Two things stood out. First, the most specific item mentioned was the investments (taxes) they will spend. Second, only general goals were mentioned, with no specifics to achieve them or benefits. But all the actions would be imposed from the top through government control and reregulation.
I’ll end here. The lies matter, and that is where we’ll pick up next time. In the meantime, I hope you’ll pause, remember, reflect, and pray for those who lost their jobs and lives during the pandemic. And how senseless much of it has been.