As I wind down this series on the Obama administration and how their policy compares to the Bible’s guidance on civil government, there were a couple of things that I did not want to leave out. I wish I could have gotten to the issue of education, whose control should be as close to the parents as possible, or perhaps to some more specific items on the lack of character that our current president has demonstrated, this being the most recent example. I possibly could have gone into more detail about the morality of the irresponsible spending of the administration or more detail into what the money is actually being spent on, but I think most have to be aware of that problem. For me, there is a more fundamental issue that is important to address. And I think addressing this problem could fix many of the others. It is the rule of law and ruling justly. When Republicans won control of the house in the last election, Obama chose to follow the progressive mantra laid out by the Center for American Progress. (an oxymoron of an organization). But as I have posted before, this is one of the fundamental principles of a progressive movement. On this issue I think the Bible lays out some very basic principles that we would be wise to follow.
(1) The government should judge according to the law as it is written. This is the very essence of the idea of rule of law. While the examples from the Bible are laws given to the people by God in what was essentially a theocracy, I believe the principle still is applicable today. After all, the Constitution was written on this premise. Here are a few supporting verses
(2) Even Kings are subject to these laws. This means that lawmakers, the executive and judges are all subject to the law of the land and should follow it in their daily lives and in how they govern. The following verses illustrate that point, some showing leaders being rebuked for not following this principle
(3) The third principle is that the government should not show partiality to anyone and they should not take bribes that influence their decisions as a government official. This would include not only open bribes, but also things such as crony capitalism. If you are using your position of power in government to benefit your political friends, then there is a moral issue here. You can extend this reasoning even further to subsidizing industries or companies that you agree with and targeting those that you do not. There are tons of verses supporting this idea. Here are a few:
There is a fourth element that I think is important, but it is something that I feel I have covered somewhat in the early posts of this series. This is the idea that not only are the people and rulers of a nation subject to their laws, but the laws themselves are subject to a higher law, specifically God’s Word as it is revealed to us in the Bible. Obviously those outside of the Christian faith do not hold to this as I have covered before. But as Christians we should. Really that is the concept of this entire series. And really I think this is why there is such a great divide between the two major political ideologies. But back to the idea of rule of law, it is now time to check out the Obama record.
The Obama Record
Before I divulge all of the extremely enlightening links on this issue, I think it is important to note that this problem has not been isolated to the Obama administration. It is a problem that has been prevalent in government for quite some time. Obama promised change in this regard, but failed to deliver. I would argue that he has taken this problem to the extreme. His government is operating at a level of near lawlessness. As evidence I provide the following links:
The first two detail examples of how President Obama operated outside of the constraints of the US Constitution. They are written by the Heritage Foundation. The third covers the same issue, but is a Congressional report. The Constitution is the law of the land, and thus is the document that the government should operate within. Over the last 4 years, when he has not been able to accomplish his agenda within the rules, he has operated outside of them. And sometimes it is not just the Constitution, but other federal law. One major example that comes to mind is the bankruptcy deal with the major automakers. What they did in that case was illegal. He also openly told Democrats in Congress to re-write and pass a law that the Supreme Court had just ruled unconstitutional…in a state of the union address. This action was denounced by both sides as un-presidential, not to mention the fact that the President advocated breaking the law on national television.
A second principle that has been violated during the past 4 years is partiality in governing. The primary example of this is the rampant crony capitalism that exists within this administration. A quick example from different areas:
- Administration officials working with Harry Reid to give money to a solar company that is a significant donor to Mr. Reid’s campaign.
- Crony Capitalism with Duke Energy, and its connection with the selection of the DNC convention site
- Crony Capitalism with the President’s signature “achievement”, Obamacare.
- Green energy money going to political backers
- Fundraising can get you a cush government job
- Bundlers get taxpayer money
A final area of major concern is Obama’s Department of Justice. Early on we learned that the law did not matter to Eric Holder and the rest of this department when a whistle blower within the department brought the New Black Panther Party case into the national spotlight. There have also been numerous other examples such as the Fast and Furious scandal, the targeting of state laws in states not conforming to the administration’s agenda, stonewalling information requests, and refusing to investigate illegal activities and/or enforce the law. This link contains a running list of stories covering the activities of the DOJ. Of all of these stories, one that struck me as particular disturbing was this one. The Justice Department under the leadership of Eric Holder, an appointee of the President, kept an enemy list of those critical of the administration. Through emails obtained by the Freedom of Information Act, it was learned that they enlisted the progressive advocacy group Media Matters (supposedly a media-watchdog) to direct smear campaigns against people on this list. This is the integrity of this administration on display. The fact that crony capitalism has been used in the past is no excuse for the present. The fact that administrations have acted outside of the Constitution in the past is no excuse for the present. While we do not know if a Mitt Romney administration will end these practices as he says he will, we do know that the current administration will not…as their record proves.