Saturday, December 08, 2007

A free market for housing and religion

Mark Steyn wrote in So now the government has stepped in and said that, if you fall into a particular category of adjustable-rate mortgage (ARMs, in the biz) and you're worried that it's getting way too adjustable, don't worry: The Nanny State is about to readjust it well inside your comfort zone. By fiat of the Treasury secretary, your adjustable-rate mortgage is henceforth an unadjustable adjustable-rate mortgage. These new UNARMs will spread their healing balm across the land until it's safe enough for the housing "market" to once again be exposed to market forces.
And what happens in five years? Will there be pressure to keep the cap on for another five years? And whether that happens or not, will money still flow as rapidly to the mortgage business, or will it go overseas where it can grow faster?
... As America demonstrates, faith thrives in a free market. In Europe, the established church, whether formal (the Church of England) or informal (as in Catholic Italy and Spain), killed religion as surely as state ownership killed the British car industry. When the Episcopal Church degenerates into wimpsville relativist milquetoast mush, Americans go elsewhere. When the Church of England undergoes similar institutional decline, Britons give up on religion entirely.
And Secular Europe is about to find itself Islamized from within, and when it is no longer available to them, just think how many will pray for the churches they lost.
Instead of a state church, Europe believes in the state as church – the all-powerful beneficent provider of cradle-to-grave welfare.
The funding of which is not created in Heaven, or freely donated in the collection plate, but taken unwillingly in the form of high taxes.
... in Europe big government has led naturally to small religion.... I would rather we talked less about religion in America (which can take care of itself) and more about government, which seems to be trending in an alarmingly European direction, Democrats and Republicans disagreeing merely on the speed at which we'll get there.
Yet the two are explicitly connected. Europe's religious decline derives in part from the state's usurpation and annexation of so many of the other supporting structures of society, including the church. I am in favor of a free market in religion and a free market in housing, but right now I'd like a conservative candidate with a clear-headed commitment to both.
I agree completely.

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