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About maxwere

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    Asst Professor
  • Birthday 10/29/1975

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    Houston, TX
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  1. As a person who self identifies as a very conservative white evangelical... I approve this post. (I can provide anecdotal evidence to each point, but observe the general crux) Don't ignore the hypocrisy and religious dogmatics of the left (Jn 7:24). It too is a product of 19th century fundamentalist evangelical revivalism.
  2. maxwere

    On Fascism

    You know, that list can be applied to leftist revolutionaries too? The Bolsheviks represent a tiny minority. Most American's left and right are in their heart of hearts trapped in a kind of populist theater. It's much easier to stake a claim as "not (better than) the other". When from a non partisan view, the similarities are eerie. Does Trump carry a certain cult-of personality similar to dictators of the past (and present)? Absolutely. I think its more a symptom of opportunity, than grand ideology.
  3. maxwere

    On Fascism

    IMO, calling it Fascism is too narrow a characterization to preserve credibility. Trump is a pragmatist/crony capitalist. In other words, he's largely who "the people" (who oppose the left) want him to be. The people (public opinion) is largely the construct of media propaganda. No one ever got brainwashed reading Mein Kampf. Populist movements are world wide phenomena. Some are far left. All are collectivist (democratic) and ultimately totalitarian. The myth in the beginning is always that the leader represents the people to the corrupt state (ie the swamp or the millionaires and billionaires). When in practice, its the leader that (ad)"ministers" the corrupt state unto the people. Regardless of where you are on the issues, chances are the next president won't solve it whether you agree with them or not. Its the increasing view that the next president CAN or should solve the problems identified in the issues that is of great concern to me.
  4. maxwere

    On Fascism

    Britt, very good thoughts. I think the species of the thing you are looking for is best characterized as 19th century "Old Hegelian" (as opposed to the younger). Both are revolutionary, anti-Chrisitian, though the former retains syncretistic rhetoric of the State. Both ideologies are collectivist and seek to squash individual liberty. Has American conservatism moved to a more collectivist bent? Absolutely! To that end Trump is as good a representative as any. But Trump (or any leftist populist equivalent) is a symptom of our own indebtedness to the state. Its "the people" that should concern us.
  5. I agree with this platitude. Never debated, in fact. The problem with you’re argument, how do you conflate “his believers” with “the state”? Should believers petition an organization (of State), (ethically) outside “the believers” (the church), who doesn’t keep the commandments of Christ (1st, 2nd, 8th, 10th) to do his work? This is a grave error. In fact, it has been tried before to epic failure. Francoist Spain (Fascism). Footnote: Debating sentiment on message board is quite silly (as is possibly debating anything). I don’t question anyone’s heart, emotions, feelings etc. That’s an Ad Hominem approach. In reality, we both want the same outcome (lower healthcare costs).
  6. No offense taken, my friend... I did hear Martin Luther was a big golfer. Likewise Augustine, Calvin, Knox, Cramner... ? So, given 10000 manuscripts, 23,000 verses, two ancient languages, you are comfortable selecting 2-3 English snippets (Render unto Caesar what is Caesar's) to form the sum and substance of biblical teaching on The State? Caesar, specifically Tiberius, was a known pedophile, slave master, tyrannt etc. Jesus, being omniscient as He is, is presumably aware. So, Jesus is saying "render unto Caesar his slave harem" or "render unto Caesar his young boys for sexual proclivity"? Under Roman law, those things are Caesars, right? That's the logical interpretation of this literal statement is it not? Does that sound like Jesus's intent? Consider: At trial, Jesus was accused of teaching against the tribute to Caesar. Likewise another teaching: Mt 28:18 So we must conclude he was simply "teaching" the Pharisees to "pay your/their taxes"?
  7. If by "we" you mean The State, then no we don't have an obligation to do anything positive for anyone. Likewise, you have no right to eat the food or water of others. You DO have the right to NOT have your food or water eaten by others. Charity is a function of individual choice and personal conscience. Since you asked... Circumstantially, I have the obligation to help my brother/neighbor or even enemy. That is my personal obligation as a confessing Christian via my priestly office imputed through Christs sacrifice (Mt 20, Heb 7, 1 Pt 2:9) (summarily known as the priesthood of all believers). It is not an obligation of the state or even non-believers (though it might be expected of an Aw-bun man). Yes, individuals in this country are still compassionate in ways other countries are not. That has a lot to do with 500 years of moral capital built by the spread of Christianity, the church and particularly protestant reformation in the west. It is the backbone of the DoI and how the framers would have us interpret. I say this partially as an attempt to fully answer your question @homersapien openly, but primarily for the benefit of those confessing Christians who blabber on about this theologically absurd (technically blastphemous) idea of state healthcare/welfare. Denathors that they are, they truly dishearten me and should know better. I dare say their pastors have failed them. Socialized medicine has both spiritually and physically devastating consequences. Lets look away from decades of government failure, not toward it. With that, probably having offended too much, I'll take a break. Good debate as usual.
  8. I'm on board with this as an intermediate stage. And echo your first statement. I'd really like to see a distinction, call a spade a spade. Incidentally, low deductible auto insurance (think body shops) have plenty of sketchiness. Mainly b/c they are able to scam the insurers a bit (most of their clients). Hard to scam a guy paying out of pocket. That's why low deductible plans are so $$. If you're like me you probably keep a $500 or higher deductible to save money figuring you just pony the dough if you had to. Same principles apply to major med/preventative services. Private doesn't eliminate crony. It just drastically reduces its impact.
  9. I was just thinking of that... you mean life, liberty and property? (negative rights) ...and I assume you translate "life" to be collective social healthcare?
  10. Poor people, on average, have lower morbidity and longevity that wealthy. Everyone agree? Feel better? Can government change this? yes, see Cambodia. Can government improve overall health? No. That can only be a issue of personal responsibility and self governance. Also, its funny how my real world historic examples are labeled "economic theories". Group (third party) insurance moves the consumer further away from the provider and real costs. There is no rationing or cost comparisons, just unchecked consumption. This is not a theory. 100% observable. I observe it in my own behavioral choices when it comes to healthcare (like when my annual copay has been met). Don't give up on markets guys!
  11. Would you agree, (1) there is a price at which private companies will offer a service to pre-existing or elderly? Secondarily, a specialization in higher demand health clients would create overall cost savings? Assuming you would #1, then we are essentially arguing the price is far too high for those cases to afford. Then, we are essentially talking about welfare, not healthcare.
  12. The only space of modern "health" the free market has been allowed to function without significant regulatory oversight is the elective market of cosmetic surgery and lasik. I don't need to tell you what costs have done over time. The free market has been regulated out of preventative and non-elective dating back to the great depression. Yes, we need to buy a lot less military hardware, but that's beside the point. The fact that we have poor elderly, sick, wounded vets, etc... in no way invalidates market theory. It takes only a stroke of a pen to enact many government UFLs, but much pain and lots of time to fund them (what will need to be done to rollback something like medicare). This is a very complex transition.
  13. Is this not true for all private business? The one who caters to all succeeds at none. Specialization increases efficiency. Homer, I think you are basing this on your experience with a third party system that originated with the 1942 stabilization act to prevent wage increases (another notorious attempt to control prices). Employers we're allowed to use a tax subsidized benefits to attract labor. That's the crux of the system we have today. Eliminate group benefits in favor of individual major medical programs (no caps). Pay for routine work out of pocket or via discount memberships and we're all richer. Cut all of the liability, cost redistribution, entitlement crap and a bandaid cost $.10 again. $10 for a shot. $50 imaging procedures. Preventative care could conceivably roll into something like a gym membership. Allow secure record keeping innovations with block chain. Transparent competitive pricing... so on and so on. Total outlays would be 80% less***. Health insurance would be just that, insurance and very profitable (for all parties). Insurers could highly specialize in major med, stop loss or routine discounts. Have some imagination America! *** administration, tort, type 2 diabetes and heart disease (preventable conditions, mostly the result of lifestyle) make up ~75% of health care costs (yes there is some overlap). I feel for all of you with respect to the ridiculous system and these prices.
  14. via the State? Is Christ preaching to Emperor a/o the Roman governors there? Is he advocating them forcibly acquiring your (wealthy) neighbors property via tax system? Certainly not, that would be a violation of at least 4/10 commandments. Homer, I agree with you. Welfare, education and finance ARE moral issues. That's why I take such an exception to the federal government monopolizing them. Why should they decide your morality? Friends, its the free market that will free you from price tyranny. Circumvent the healthcare industrial complex where you can. I doubt the headline here. On the other hand, I can believe 70% of Americans have less than a 3rd grade understanding of government finance and economics. Split the difference and its scary.
  15. maxwere

    Tuesday's Texas Primary Election

    I expect Trump (just as Obama did) will increase voter turnout on the democratic side virtually everywhere (Dems to have a pretty good Nov). That being said, Texas result was much ado about nothing as the major republican candidates are (understatedly) firmly entrenched. Voting the GOP primary was a waste of time if your only concern is federal politics (99% of this country).