Saturday, January 24, 2009

DANG (5) Social Welfare

Some people believe that we need the government to care for us if we fall into poverty. This is a false hope. The state will never resolve poverty, because its solutions create dependence. Governments have put enormous resource into caring for the poor, but their efforts have tended to increase the extent of poverty in the world. Despite 70 years of increasing taxation and hundreds of new social welfare programmes during a period of unprecedented economic growth, the state has failed to solve poverty.

A solution that has failed so consistently should be rejected. We should avoid solutions that take a large share of income to do something so ineffective.

A variety of options are available to people who fear falling into poverty.

  • Insurance allows people to share the risk of irregular events.
  • Insurance allows people choose the level of risks from which they want protection.
  • Families should provide for those in poverty.
  • Deacons in the church will often help those who are poor.
  • Belonging to a caring community is a good option.
  • Someone might feel sorry for you.
The bible provides options that actually work. Families should be the primary means of support. Deacons, poor loans, gleaning and sharing are effective methods for dealing with short-term poverty, if families fail. The gospel is the best solution to long-term poverty, because it changes attitudes and capabilities.


Unknown said...

Hi Ron

It's also worth noting that in God's economy family is central to the welfare of its members.

If the family is 'healthy' there is no need for state intervention. If the family is dysfunctional then external agencies are required. Even then, the state should be the last resort.

Good articles!


Madeleine said...

Nice post. So many people are confused as to the Christian position towards welfare.

Congrats on making the NZ blog rankings - it was nice to discover your site!

Ron McK said...

Thanks Madeleine.
I hope you are feeling better.