I am not convinced that the Great Default which is going to engulf Western nations will lead to comprehensive reforms that reduce the likelihood of another round. I think people will be looking for a safety net after the collapse of the government-supplied safety net. I also think there is a possibility that voters will learn their lesson. But I don’t think that this is going to be the case unless there are a lot of voters who come across the kind of critique the Austrian School economists have provided, and who then pressure Congressman to repeal the Federal Reserve Act of 1913, the graduated income tax of 1913, in the federal regulatory state.
But who is going to teach them? Who is going to persuade them in a crisis? How will they find the correct answers? Why won’t they do what voters have done in the past, namely, call on the government to create another safety net. It is not enough for a bad system to break down: it also requires a comprehensive alternative from a theoretical standpoint, as well as implementation of the proposed solution (Gary North, Nov. 2014).
Throughout the world, the attribute we are most in need of is maturity. Because it’s in short supply everywhere, it affects people, communities and nations.
Thirty years ago the West had Reagan and Thatcher who provided a kind of moral leadership, along with Pope John Paul. And who has replaced them? Well, no one of any note. Political leaders love popularity, but there are none it seems, to provide the maturity and competent decision making that ultimately lead to lasting success and thus popularity.
Is this because the electorate has continued to be in moral and ethical decline? The leadership of Reagan, Thatcher and John Paul, which had clear overtones of Christian and free market morality, is out of favour today. Where are their replacements? There aren’t any. This is initially bad, but that’s not the end of the story. The Psalmist said,
Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now I keep Your Word (Ps.119:67).
Individuals, families, churches, along with communities and nations, have this in common: They are all subject to the sovereign God of heaven. He makes it clear that the nations are like a drop in the bucket to Him (Isa.40:15), and He can pick them up and put them down as He wills. And He does.
And He disciplines whole nations, just as He disciplined Egypt in Moses’ time, when Pharoah was intent on enslaving and murdering His people. He specifically explained to Moses,
Thus I will harden Pharaoh’s heart, and he will chase after them; and I will be honored through Pharaoh and all his army, and the Egyptians will know that I am the Lord (Ex.14:4).
And you thought that things have changed now? Well, I’ve got news for you:
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever (Heb.13:8).
The same God Who oversaw the destruction of Pharoah’s army in the Red Sea, as it pursued the children of Israel at the Exodus, is still working to accomplish His purpose, exactly as He was then.
Why has the United States been in decline now, for decades? It’s turned away from God, and now He is disciplining the nation, along with His people in the nation. And this isn’t going to change until the nation’s leaders get the message. So, the U.S. has endless, futile wars, along with Social Security and health systems founded on the promises of politicians; all destined to fail.
Who is going to take care of old people? Who is going to take care of the poor? Who is going to fund the hospitals? Who is going to educate children? Who is going to clean the streets? Who is going to keep the highways in repair? Who is going to pick up the garbage? Who is going to provide the currency? Who is going to operate the public health systems? Who is going to spray mosquitoes in Florida? These are simple questions, but there are no simple answers. These are inescapable questions, but there are no systematic answers.
So the prognosis for the patient is more pain, for now. Pain leads people to want change. “Get me out of this!” They may not like the idea of repentance initially, but when they understand there’s no other lasting solution to their problems, it gives them good reason to change.
God does promise us,
In repentance and rest you will be saved, in quietness and trust is your strength…(Isa.30:15).