18 February 2010

Democracy is Temporary

A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves largess (generous benefits) from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always votes for the candidate promising the most benefits from the public treasury, with the results that a democracy always collapses over loose fiscal policy, always followed by dictatorship.

The average age of the world's greatest civilizations has been two hundred years. These nations have progressed through this sequence: from bondage to spiritual faith, from spiritual faith to great courage; from great courage to liberty; from liberty to abundance; from abundance to selfishness; from selfishness to complacency; from complacency to apathy; from apathy to dependence; from dependence back to bondage.
Alexander Frazer Tyler in "The Decline and Fall of the Athenian Republic," (1776).

04 February 2010

Poltical Eschatology

We need to start thinking about church/state relations in eschatological categories. If we think of them in static categories, the Christian church will find it hard to avoid becoming reactionary. That kind of conservatism is the way of death.

The Marxists know what they are supposed to be doing right now because they have an eschatology of the state. They say that the dictatorship of the proletariat will eventually wither away, which is perfect nonsense, but they nevertheless do have an eschatology of the thing. But when believing Christians get involved in politics they are hampered by the fact that politics is inherently an eschatological discipline, and their eschatology is either lurid, confused, pessimistic, or non-existent....

So I want to think of where church/state relations are headed teleologically -- we need a political eschatology. This will orient us where we need to be oriented. Man was created to be informed by the past, but oriented by the future, not the past.

So the central question I am trying to ask and answer in this discussion is this: where is the Spirit taking us, considered in thousand year chunks?
Douglas Wilson on The Future is True East