Saturday, April 18, 2015

Why Global Warming Is No Cause For Alarm

The earth has warmed a slight 1.6 deg F in the past 100 years --a little more in the northern hemisphere -- and mostly due to man.  The arctic area has warmed the most. The sea has been rising at about 8 to 12 inches in 100 years. Those are the facts.

In both cases, things are happening VERY slowly and humans can and will adjust. The warming and it's effects are quite small--despite what alarmists and their faulty models say.

The big problem that no one seems to understand is that just to halt the rise of CO2 in the atmosphere would require a gargantuan reduction of CO2 emissions of 50 to 60%. This would NOT roll back temperatures or CO2 -- just halt any rise! And such reductions would cost $10s of Trillions in the US alone and cripple our finances and economy (all electric cars, more nuclear power for the cars, scrubbing every power plant stack in the country. The US has 10,000 power plants alone). It amounts to financial suicide.  No country like China or India would commit economic suicide either.   Furthermore, the result of such spending would be imperceptible.

The hydrocarbon era will likely end in another 100 years from now and we'll be a little warmer and the sea about 1 foot higher. Thorium molten salt nuclear reactors will probably be the dominant energy source given it's abundance, it's safety, it's efficiency.

For a bunch of handy graphs about global warming see here.  Judge for yourself.  Just look at the data.

No panic is indicated. Economic suicide is not required. However, a program to start the transition to Thorium (or other) power should be started now for the coming decades.

Oh, and all the alarmist "scientists" and their faulty models are wrong! And to think that Al Gore almost was our president!?!

The Death Tax is the Unkindest Cut of All

The Death (estate) tax is the unkindest cut of all.   It hits people like farmers the hardest, who happen to hold substantial amounts land.    It doesn't take much land to be hit with a huge tax. The inadvertent effect, in just this one case, is that family farms are sold to large corporate farmers so that estates can pay the extortion.  That's why there's hardly any family farms left.

Family businesses are ruined in the same way. Parents, if they are diligent, lucky and work their asses off, create a small business that they would like to bequeath to the next generation in their family. The estate tax causes families to sell out to pay the tax.

And for what?

Those tax dollars are pissed away on useless and wasteful programs or spent on unworthy people. Great country we live in, huh?

And who are the only advocates for eliminating Estate Taxes?  Republicans.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Colin Powell Still Sees "Dark Stain" of Racism in GOP

Colin Powell wrote an article saying that he still sees racism in the GOP and in the country.  There will always be racism, but it's mostly gone now.  The Democrats and blacks just keep playing the racism card when racism is largely an excuse now.  The truth is that blacks are far more racist than whites.

What black persons don't like, and mistake for racism, is that people have a negative view of black people -- but sadly that view is justified by their own behavior and beliefs.   I personally have a much more negative view of black people and black men in particular now that I've had to put up with the outrageous incompetence and failures of Obama, Holder and Rice, but that doesn't mean that I assume EVERYONE to be that way.  In fact, I'm happy to meet black persons who surprise me with values and integrity.  It's not often but, when it does happen, it makes me very happy! 

Maybe that "dark vein" Powell's  talking about are realistic assessments and attitudes by white people in observing the declining state of black culture in America?  
  • What the impartial observer sees is that black criminality is as bad as ever with 6% of the US population (black men) committing more than 50% of murders and gun crimes? Nobody ever suggests to take away guns from black men, do they? That would be entirely too real and correct.  
  • Or maybe it's because blacks make up 40% of the US prison population- incarcerated at about 7X the rate of whites-- because they commit crimes at 7X the rate of whites. 
  • Or maybe it's because black "culture" is in complete collapse in rampant criminality, fornication, drug dealing, misogyny, and STDs at 18X the rate of whites? For example, 70% of new HIV cases are black persons and I'm supposed to feel sorry for them? 
  • Or because we have to put with ridiculously ignorant black politicians who are clearly intellectually inferior and beholden to Socialism if not Communism? 

Sorry, blacks (especially black men) are a huge burden to this country. And they are farther than ever from MLK's dream of "being judged by the content of their character." Sorry, there is little " character" in evidence in this group. All I see is racism from BLACK people!

NB, I DO have respect for Colin Powell. I may not agree with everything he says, but I respect him. Oh, and no, I'm not a racist at all -- just tired of all the rampant (and incorrect) political correctness that tries to whitewash the black cultural collapse evident right under our noses

Monday, February 23, 2015

Jobs for Jihadis

Thanks to Zero Hedge, here's some completed job applications for the (ficticious) US State Department's "Jobs for Jihadis" program:




Sunday, February 22, 2015

Another Example of Why The Left Is Unfit to Govern

I've indicated before that Liberals are emotional, irrational, unprincipled and therefore unfit to govern.  I guess I forgot to include "hopelessly naive"-- even "dangerous."

Washington, this Administration and the State Department are full of naive Leftists with dangerous -- even ridiculous -- ideas about the world.  Dumb ass Marie Harf, idiot spokesperson for the US State Department, said that we can't win the war with ISIS by just killing them.  That's not so bad, but then says that they need jobs or something!

That's almost as bad as Michelle Obama and fellow idiot P. Diddy's Twitter campaign to "combat" the seriously murderous Boko Haram terrorists who are wrecking havoc throughout Nigeria.  The naivety is stunning.

As if to prove the point, the Leftist President of Uruguay verbally blasts the 6 Islamic Jihadist terror detainees, released from Guantanamo to Uruguay, for being "lazy" after they have repeatedly refused jobs offered to them well after their resettlement.  The Uruguay President actually visited the new immigrants personally!  He left that visit disgusted.  At least they aren't fighting back in the field of battle like most of the released detainees!  So much for the ability of jobs, work, or anything else to reform these people.  Gee, maybe killing them is all you CAN do?

This cartoon goes a long way to explain why Lefties are unfit to govern or even set policy:


Saturday, February 14, 2015

World in Flames While Obama Fiddles

You could say that Obama is an AWOL president -- absent without leave.  That's a serious charge since the President is the commander-in-chief.  It's clear that Obama was disinterested and AWOL during the Benghazi attack -- Leon Panetta made that clear

Now, as medieval ISIS rampages across the Mideast, Iranian proxies win in Yemen and surround Saudi Arabia, war begins in E. Europe, and every problem in the US unsolved and made worse by this President, President Obama is playing around with selfies, interviews YouTube sensation GloZell and wringing his hands in denial about the world-wide problem of Islam.

"Fiddling while Rome burns" and "re-arranging chairs on the deck of the Titanic" come to mind as the President, supremely confident in his ignorance, declares in the SOTU address that "crisis has passed."  Welcome to the most un-serious President ever in American History:






Here's his "groundbreaking" interview with internet sensation GloZell who is considered "cool" for snorting cinnamon and bathing in a tub with milk and cereal :




The most un-serious President ever elected by a bunch of people because he's "cool."

End of Cheap Energy and Peak Debt Levels Presage Collapse

The huge increase in world population in the past 150 years, the food production to feed those people and the rise of modern specialized society was based on cheap energy, technology and the rise of debt (capital). But the most important thing is energy. In a way, energy is everything. Coal, then oil fueled the industrial revolution and the rapid growth up to 2008. Raw materials, including coal and oil, were very cheap until recent decades.

Cheap oil energy is no longer available for additional barrels demanded. Oil is available but it's not cheap!  If oil prices shoot up to over $100 or more when extra barrels are demanded like in 2008, or in response to Chinese demand in 2009/2010, then we've reached the end of cheap oil.  Remember, world GDP growth and energy consumption go hand in hand.

We're also reaching the end of debt's marginal utility, meaning the amount of growth per unit of debt has declined to nearly nothing. I call it "debt saturation." Here's the point of this blog post: if we've reached the end of affordable energy and debt's marginal utility, then we've reached the "end" of world GDP growth.  And if strong GDP growth is ending, then the debt "edifice" built up to fund recent year's growth may prove to be unsustainable.  In fact, the debt crisis in 2008 is likely to be a prelude to more debt trouble -- even massive defaults -- in the years ahead.

GDP growth requires more energy (oil)
Marginal Utility of Debt Is Nearing Zero; Meaning Debt No Longer "Buys" Growth

In the interest of brevity, I don't want to recap recent world history, but instead focus on recent years.  When oil prices hit $145 in 2007/2008, it caused a recession and triggered financial crisis in the US and the world.   It's entirely possible that $108 oil in 2014 has triggered another recession in 2015--coupled with the fact that China has cut back it's credit-fueled growth (due to the declining utility of debt there).  Further below, I explain why China can no longer ride to the world's rescue.

High Oil Prices Led to Recessions in 1974, 1981 and 2008
The financial crisis in 2008 was due to high oil prices and also the high indebtedness of US consumers. Consumer debt reached a peak relative to incomes, mostly due to mortgages (debt saturation).  High oil prices hurt the economy, left consumers with less discretionary income and many couldn't pay all of their bills including mortgages.  The mortgage and housing markets collapsed which then threatened the solvency of banks -- and the entire financial system.  So, the cost of oil triggered a sudden economic recession in 2008 like in 1974 and 1981 (see chart above).   Financial institutions around the world also faced a panic and world trade ground to a temporary halt as Letters of Credit were refused or unavailable.  It was a near-death experience.  In summary, you could say that world consumers reached a limit in indebtedness due primarily to the cost of energy.  Consumers couldn't bear the cost of energy and debt collapsed. 

In response, the US started it's money "printing" program, countless other programs, and huge deficit spending.  China panicked and embarked on the most amazing debt-fueled spending ever seen in world history.  In 5 years, China's ratio of credit to GDP has jumped by 75 percentage points to 200pc of GDP or more.  How did China do that? They embarked on debt-financed programs to build ghost cities, still-empty malls, millions of units of housing in still-unoccupied buildings.  To do this, they needed huge amounts of energy, raw materials and debt.  Since world oil production is mostly limited (any extra demand causes oil prices to spike to unaffordable levels), China used mostly cheap domestic coal to fuel their breakneck expansion.  China used huge amounts of coal since 2009.

China's Parabolic Rise Was Powered Primarily by Coal

Now even China has reached an indebtedness that is highly correlated with financial crises. Even they realize it and have recently scaled back on new credit growth -- causing their economy to slow.  China's reduction of debt increases and slowdown has caused key world commodity prices to crash with iron ore, copper and oil down by more than 50% since 2011.  Debt growth only slowed there -- it's not declining!  Even slowing debt growth causes commodity prices to collapse!


In the US, in the past 3 years, the shale oil and gas boom increased US oil production by 3 million barrels per day (while the rest of the world's production has been flat to slightly down).  When China started to slow it's debt-fueled expansion, it caused reduced total oil demand by them and commodity-producing countries, and accounts for the big plunge in oil (and other commodity) prices worldwide.  The boom in US oil and gas production was largely responsible for nearly all of the high-paying employment growth in the US since the 2008 financial crisis.  Now that boom is likely over.  Employment will fall in the US unless oil prices rise quickly.  Falling employment means recession.

If Shale Boom Is Over, Then Employment in US Will Drop.  Dropping Employment Signify Contraction or Recession
You might say that cheaper oil will give the world economy room to grow. It's true that some oil importing countries will be helped.  But the plunge in commodity prices is hurting all of the commodity exporting countries, ie., the Middle Eastern countries, Brazil, Russia, Venezuela, Canada, Australia and many other countries in Africa and Latin America.  These countries will likely be in recession and their demand for US exports will drop. This effect has recently shown up in declining US export data. 
Even the long-term future of the shale oil boom is threatened since it was funded by cheap debt which will no longer be cheap enough for many of the companies.  Credit for marginal shale producers may not be available at all. Remember that shale oil and oil sands are the only worldwide sources of marginal production in recent years and were only made possible by extremely high oil prices. If loans to shale drilling companies is not available, it may mean that oil spikes will be even higher in the future should demand "try" to rise.  In the next few years, this may mean that we will see even larger oscillations in oil prices and, therefore, instability in the economy.  This is an effect of "hitting the wall"-- or hitting the limits of resources and growth.

More immediately, reduced demand for US exports from much of the world, reduced employment in the oil patch in the US (the only bright spot in the US economy) may trigger a recession in the US since growth has only been running at about 2%.  It's entirely possible that it's already showing up.  For example, the past two month's retail sales were down sharply (some of that is due to lower gasoline prices).  US exports and durable goods orders were down sharply for the past two months as well.  China is slowing very sharply.  Europe is basically already in recession.  Evidence of world recession is mounting.  Brazil and Russia are likely in recession. Debt defaults may be imminent for Venezuela, Russia and other countries. These defaults and recessions may trigger further financial crises, with massive losses for investors in equities which will further reinforce the recessionary forces.

Since 2009, real median incomes are down for the US (see graph below) and the reduced employment in the oil patch will further reduce it.  Thanks to Obamacare, consumers are under pressure from much higher healthcare insurance costs and are not able to spend the money saved at the gas pump. Food prices and rent prices have also become big burdens for consumers since their incomes are mostly stagnate to falling.


The debt carrying capacity of consumers falls as income falls.  And due to the rising cost of non-performing loans, some consumer interest rates will go up for such loans.  Small shale oil company's cost of credit will go up or dry up.  Interest rates for highly indebted companies will go up as Junk bond interest rates rise (this is already begun).  Recession will aggravate this situation.  Defaults will rise and marginal credit interest rates will rise.  The debt carrying capacity for entire countries like Venezuela, Argentina and even Russia is now in doubt.

Debt levels are at dangerous levels everywhere now.  Slowing growth in economies makes the burden of debt more difficult for corporations and governments.  Eventually even government debt levels may become a problem.  US debt levels have risen 80% to $18 Trillion in the past 6 1/2 year alone with shockingly little effect!  Clearly this trajectory is unsustainable.

Perhaps more ominously, if the world economy tumbles back in recession, then the entire world is ill-prepared to offset an economic downturn.  Other than rising government deficits, there are few effective counter-cyclical policy tools available.  Interest rates are already zero here and in most places.  Money printing has been discontinued in the US as it's continued use has been proven to be ineffective.  As I've mentioned, there's evidence that even increased government deficit spending no longer boosts GDP as much as in the past -- the collapse of debt's marginal utility worldwide.

China has reached dangerous levels of debt due to it's vast and desperate investment program on largely uneconomic projects.  It's difficult to see them re-initiating such a program. Their housing projects and ghost cities are still empty.  There are other limits as well. For example, China was recently consuming up to 60% of the world's coal, iron ore and copper.  If China wanted to maintain 7% growth rates like the past, then their demand for such raw materials would double in 10 years along with their economy -- this means that in 10 years, demand for commodities would exceed 100% of the world's supply of nearly everything!  The cost of those materials would sky rocket!  As mentioned before oil prices would spike dangerously and unsustainably higher!  Their coal use would have to double as well at a huge cost.  Even now, air and water pollution are a serious and real threat to the population in China.  People can barely breath there today.  You can see how they've reached a limit to their growth rate. The same effect applies everywhere else! There are limits to growth in a world of limited low-cost energy and resources! 

And debt loads built up worldwide, especially after the 2008 crisis, may very well prove to be unsustainable at some point as growth permanently stalls. Eventually, confidence could evaporate or, if money printing is re-established everywhere to monetize government debt issuance, then inflation may create the next crisis in market interest rates and markets in general.

If I say to anyone these days "everything is falling apart" I get nods of agreement. It's possible that recession, debt crises, depression, social unrest and war lie in our future. Even now, war has broken out in E. Europe and the Middle East is in flames. China is threatening neighbors in SE Asia. Some of these conflicts are due to desperation of regimes to divert the public attention and boost nationalism at home (Russia and China).  And seven years after the 2008 meltdown, the US (and world economies) are still on life support.  Still-rising government debt is barely keep economic growth in positive numbers. Zero interest rates, vastly expanded money supply, still high fiscal deficits, $8 trillion in new US gov't debt (and growing) haven't worked well except to bide time.  Therefore, no policy tools remain to counteract the next downturn. We're just one economic shock away from the next recession.  And with no effective policy tools remaining, the next Great Depression may be around the corner.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Obama's Mission Unaccomplished


Conservatives Still Outnumber Liberals in US

In the US, the majority of people have long identified themselves as Conservatives or Moderates and NOT Liberals.   This is why Liberals are so desperate to put as many people onto government programs so that those people will continue to vote for them.  It's also why Democrats are eager to bring in as many illegals from the poorest educated countries in Central America and give them freebies -- so they ultimately vote for them.  They desperately need more ignorant voters to advance their agenda. 

How Conservative is America?   Very.  See the charts below:

 
Out of 50 States, Conservatives outnumber Liberals in 47 of them.


Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Ron Paul's 10 New Year's Resolutions for the US Congress in 2015

From the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity:

Since New Year's is traditionally a time for resolutions, and since the new Congress convened this week, I thought I would suggest some New Year's resolutions for Congress:
1) Bring the troops home — Congress should take the first, and most important, step toward ending our hyper-interventionist foreign policy by bringing our troops home and closing all overseas military facilities. The American people can no longer afford to bear the cost of empire.
2) Pass the Audit the Fed bill — The American people deserve to know the entire truth about how the Federal Reserve's monetary policy benefits big-spending politicians and financial elites while harming average Americans.
3) Repeal the PATRIOT Act and rein in the National Security Agency — It is approaching two years since Edward Snowden revealed the extent of the NSA's unconstitutional spying. Yet Congress still refuses to put a leash on the surveillance state. Congress should take the first step toward restoring respect for the Fourth Amendment by allowing Section 215 of the PATRIOT Act to expire.
4) Shut down the Transportation Security Administration — Treating all American air travelers as criminal suspects and subjecting them to intrusive and humiliating searches does nothing to enhance our security. Congress should shut down TSA and return responsibility for airline security to the airlines. Private businesses can effectively protect their customers and employees if the government gets out of the way.
5) End all corporate welfare — Federal programs that provide subsidies or other special benefits to politically-connected businesses cause economic inequality, distort the market, and waste taxpayer money. It also makes political and moral sense to cut welfare for the rich before cutting welfare for the poor. Congress should start dismantling the corporate welfare state by killing the Export-Import Bank and the Overseas Private Investment Corporation. Congress should also reject legislation proposed to benefit one industry or individual, such as Sheldon Adelson's Internet gambling ban.
6) Repeal and Replace Obamacare — Many Americans are losing their insurance while others are facing increasing health care costs because of Obamacare. Repealing Obamacare is only a first step. Congress should both repeal all federal policies that distort the health care market and restore a true free market in health care.
7) End police militarization — The killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri in August brought the issue of police militarization to the center of national debate. Congress must end all federal programs that provide military equipment to local police forces.
8) Shut down the Department of Education — It is no coincidence that education in America has declined as federal control over education has increased. Congress should de-fund all federal education programs and return control over education to local communities and parents.
9) Allow individuals to opt out — A positive step toward restoring a free society would be allowing individuals to opt out of Obamacare and other federal mandates. Young people should also be granted the ability to opt out of paying Social Security and Medicare taxes in exchange for agreeing to never accept Social Security and Medicare benefits.
10) Allow state governments to opt out — If Congress lacks the votes to end the war on drugs, repeal Obamacare, or roll back other unconstitutional federal programs, it should at least respect the rights of states to set their own policies in these areas. Federal prohibition of state laws nullifying Obamacare or legalizing marijuana turns the Tenth Amendment upside down.
By adopting these resolutions,  

Congress can make 2015 the year America begins reversing the long, slow slide toward authoritarianism, empire, national bankruptcy, and economic decline.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Comrade Obama's Unilateral Gift to Cuba's Junta

Cuba is a country hijacked and run into the ground by the Castro family.  Cuba is the poorest country on earth thanks to the Castro brothers and Socialism (Communism).  After 50 years of rule by the Castro's and their strict administration of Socialism ideals, their economic performance has been such a failure that a highly qualified doctor earns $68 per month and a nurse earns half of that.  One or two dollars per day!!   Chinese peasants make more than that!!   So everyone makes $1 or $2 per day for their labor regardless of how hard they work, or the value of their work.

Of course, because of Socialism's wonderful idea of IMPOSING income equality (as opposed to the "evil" inequality in Capitalism), EVERYONE IS VASTLY WORSE OFF and suffering in poverty.  Note to US socialists and Obama supporters: that's what happens when you try to equalize incomes! EVERYONE is MUCH worse off!  Get that through your thick heads.

This "gift" of more trade from Comrade Obama, with no demands for democracy or any change away from the devastation of Socialism, will only enrich and further entrench the regime. Only Raul and Fidel and their extensive hangers-on; army generals and secret police will benefit, NOT the people. Every enterprise is owned by the dictators and their privileged bureaucracy, so the money from Obama's gift will  flow only to them and then to Swiss bank accounts. The whole thing is a complete joke!  No progress will come to Cuba until free enterprise, free markets, democracy and the complete destruction of Communism and ouster of Raul and Fidel is made.

Obama knows nothing except kowtowing to dictators in Iran and Russia and now the Castro brothers. Each gambit is failing. Nothing Obama does is even remotely successful.  He is the literal embodiment of failure and wrong ideas.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Loving Your Enemies and Why Islam Is Screwed-up

I was recently re-reading MLK's sermon "Loving Your Enemies" written in 1957. I've pasted it below. It's well worth a read. He goes into the various Greek words for love (philia, eros, agape) and gets to the meaning of agape love as a "redemptive goodwill for all men" which means, among other things, that you shouldn't hate your enemies and if you have a chance to destroy your enemies, that you shouldn't do it -- even if you could.

King says, "Hate at any point is a cancer that gnaws away at the very vital center of your life and your existence. It is like eroding acid that eats away the best and the objective center of your life. So Jesus says love, because hate destroys the hater as well as the hated."

I'm not doing any justice to what he wrote, but I bring it up because it is Christianity's emphasis on love -- even loving your enemies -- forgiveness, turning the other cheek is vastly superior to Islam. Instead of "turning the other cheek," large swaths of Muslims all over the world are hellbent on settling grievances, getting vengeance, never forgetting nor forgiving (sometimes for generations) and calling for hateful killing and destruction -- all the while fulfilling their scripture! This is precisely where they have gone astray -- and far astray at that. They even indoctrinate their children into hatreds of prior generations! This has been going for centuries as the Quran calls for this behavior! In contrast, Jesus never called for violence.

Their scripture, the Qu'ran, has numerous injunctions to destroy infidels -- which is basically everyone other than themselves. In totality, the Quran meets the criteria of hate speech. See here for a fuller explanation. If that's not bad enough, Muslims are also attacking and killing their own due to an insane rivalry between Sunnis and Shia.

Worldwide, outside of war zones, Muslim attacks have killed over 24,000 persons and the number of wounded or injured is at least 10 times that amount since 2001. This casualty rate is beginning to resemble the Vietnam War. Anyone who doubts that we are not at war with Islam just needs to examine the mounting death/casualty toll.

The President of Egypt Al Sisi recently called for reformation of Islam in front of their most prestigious religious school saying “I say and repeat again that we are in need of a religious revolution.” He stressed that “it’s inconceivable that the thinking that we hold most sacred should cause the entire umma [Muslims worldwide] to be a source of anxiety, danger, killing and destruction for the rest of the world.”

Finally a call for Islamic reformation by a prominent leader!! I can't recall anyone within the Muslim community making such a bold call.  Because he's right, of course, expect him to be killed for such blashemy!  I'm waiting for death threats and Fatwahs against this reformer.

Loving Your Enemies
November 17 1957

“I want to use as a subject from which to preach this morning a very familiar subject, and it is familiar to you because I have preached from this subject twice before to my knowing in this pulpit. I try to make it a, something of a custom or tradition to preach from this passage of Scripture at least once a year, adding new insights that I develop along the way out of new experiences as I give these messages. Although the content is, the basic content is the same, new insights and new experiences naturally make for new illustrations.

“So I want to turn your attention to this subject: "Loving Your Enemies." It's so basic to me because it is a part of my basic philosophical and theological orientation—the whole idea of love, the whole philosophy of love. In the fifth chapter of the gospel as recorded by Saint Matthew, we read these very arresting words flowing from the lips of our Lord and Master: "Ye have heard that it has been said, ‘Thou shall love thy neighbor, and hate thine enemy.' But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them that despitefully use you; that ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven."

“Over the centuries, many persons have argued that this is an extremely difficult command. Many would go so far as to say that it just isn't possible to move out into the actual practice of this glorious command. But far from being an impractical idealist, Jesus has become the practical realist. The words of this text glitter in our eyes with a new urgency. Far from being the pious injunction of a utopian dreamer, this command is an absolute necessity for the survival of our civilization. Yes, it is love that will save our world and our civilization, love even for enemies.

“Now let me hasten to say that Jesus was very serious when he gave this command; he wasn't playing. He realized that it's hard to love your enemies. He realized that it's difficult to love those persons who seek to defeat you, those persons who say evil things about you. He realized that it was painfully hard, pressingly hard. But he wasn't playing. We have the Christian and moral responsibility to seek to discover the meaning of these words, and to discover how we can live out this command, and why we should live by this command.

“Now first let us deal with this question, which is the practical question: How do you go about loving your enemies? I think the first thing is this: In order to love your enemies, you must begin by analyzing self. And I'm sure that seems strange to you, that I start out telling you this morning that you love your enemies by beginning with a look at self. It seems to me that that is the first and foremost way to come to an adequate discovery to the how of this situation.

“Now, I'm aware of the fact that some people will not like you, not because of something you have done to them, but they just won't like you. But after looking at these things and admitting these things, we must face the fact that an individual might dislike us because of something that we've done deep down in the past, some personality attribute that we possess, something that we've done deep down in the past and we've forgotten about it; but it was that something that aroused the hate response within the individual. That is why I say, begin with yourself. There might be something within you that arouses the tragic hate response in the other individual.

“This is true in our international struggle. Democracy is the greatest form of government to my mind that man has ever conceived, but the weakness is that we have never touched it. We must face the fact that the rhythmic beat of the deep rumblings of discontent from Asia and Africa is at bottom a revolt against the imperialism and colonialism perpetuated by Western civilization all these many years.

“And this is what Jesus means when he said: "How is it that you can see the mote in your brother's eye and not see the beam in your own eye?" And this is one of the tragedies of human nature. So we begin to love our enemies and love those persons that hate us whether in collective life or individual life by looking at ourselves.

“A second thing that an individual must do in seeking to love his enemy is to discover the element of good in his enemy, and every time you begin to hate that person and think of hating that person, realize that there is some good there and look at those good points which will over-balance the bad points.

“Somehow the "isness" of our present nature is out of harmony with the eternal "oughtness" that forever confronts us. And this simply means this: That within the best of us, there is some evil, and within the worst of us, there is some good. When we come to see this, we take a different attitude toward individuals. The person who hates you most has some good in him; even the nation that hates you most has some good in it; even the race that hates you most has some good in it. And when you come to the point that you look in the face of every man and see deep down within him what religion calls "the image of God," you begin to love him in spite of. No matter what he does, you see God's image there. There is an element of goodness that he can never slough off. Discover the element of good in your enemy. And as you seek to hate him, find the center of goodness and place your attention there and you will take a new attitude.

“Another way that you love your enemy is this: When the opportunity presents itself for you to defeat your enemy, that is the time which you must not do it. There will come a time, in many instances, when the person who hates you most, the person who has misused you most, the person who has gossiped about you most, the person who has spread false rumors about you most, there will come a time when you will have an opportunity to defeat that person. It might be in terms of a recommendation for a job; it might be in terms of helping that person to make some move in life. That's the time you must do it. That is the meaning of love. In the final analysis, love is not this sentimental something that we talk about. It's not merely an emotional something. Love is creative, understanding goodwill for all men. It is the refusal to defeat any individual. When you rise to the level of love, of its great beauty and power, you seek only to defeat evil systems. Individuals who happen to be caught up in that system, you love, but you seek to defeat the system.

“The Greek language, as I've said so often before, is very powerful at this point. It comes to our aid beautifully in giving us the real meaning and depth of the whole philosophy of love. And I think it is quite apropos at this point, for you see the Greek language has three words for love, interestingly enough. It talks about love as eros. That's one word for love. Eros is a sort of, aesthetic love. Plato talks about it a great deal in his dialogues, a sort of yearning of the soul for the realm of the gods. And it's come to us to be a sort of romantic love, though it's a beautiful love. Everybody has experienced eros in all of its beauty when you find some individual that is attractive to you and that you pour out all of your like and your love on that individual. That is eros, you see, and it's a powerful, beautiful love that is given to us through all of the beauty of literature; we read about it.

“Then the Greek language talks about philia, and that's another type of love that's also beautiful. It is a sort of intimate affection between personal friends. And this is the type of love that you have for those persons that you're friendly with, your intimate friends, or people that you call on the telephone and you go by to have dinner with, and your roommate in college and that type of thing. It's a sort of reciprocal love. On this level, you like a person because that person likes you. You love on this level, because you are loved. You love on this level, because there's something about the person you love that is likeable to you. This too is a beautiful love. You can communicate with a person; you have certain things in common; you like to do things together. This is philia.

“The Greek language comes out with another word for love. It is the word agape. And agape is more than eros; agape is more than philia; agape is something of the understanding, creative, redemptive goodwill for all men. It is a love that seeks nothing in return. It is an overflowing love; it's what theologians would call the love of God working in the lives of men. And when you rise to love on this level, you begin to love men, not because they are likeable, but because God loves them. You look at every man, and you love him because you know God loves him. And he might be the worst person you've ever seen.

“And this is what Jesus means, I think, in this very passage when he says, "Love your enemy." And it's significant that he does not say, "Like your enemy." Like is a sentimental something, an affectionate something. There are a lot of people that I find it difficult to like. I don't like what they do to me. I don't like what they say about me and other people. I don't like their attitudes. I don't like some of the things they're doing. I don't like them. But Jesus says love them. And love is greater than like. Love is understanding, redemptive goodwill for all men, so that you love everybody, because God loves them. You refuse to do anything that will defeat an individual, because you have agape in your soul. And here you come to the point that you love the individual who does the evil deed, while hating the deed that the person does. This is what Jesus means when he says, "Love your enemy." This is the way to do it. When the opportunity presents itself when you can defeat your enemy, you must not do it.

“Now for the few moments left, let us move from the practical how to the theoretical why. It's not only necessary to know how to go about loving your enemies, but also to go down into the question of why we should love our enemies. I think the first reason that we should love our enemies, and I think this was at the very center of Jesus' thinking, is this: that hate for hate only intensifies the existence of hate and evil in the universe. If I hit you and you hit me and I hit you back and you hit me back and go on, you see, that goes on ad infinitum. It just never ends. Somewhere somebody must have a little sense, and that's the strong person. The strong person is the person who can cut off the chain of hate, the chain of evil. And that is the tragedy of hate – that it doesn't cut it off. It only intensifies the existence of hate and evil in the universe. Somebody must have religion enough and morality enough to cut it off and inject within the very structure of the universe that strong and powerful element of love.

“I think I mentioned before that sometime ago my brother and I were driving one evening to Chattanooga, Tennessee, from Atlanta. He was driving the car. And for some reason the drivers were very discourteous that night. They didn't dim their lights; hardly any driver that passed by dimmed his lights. And I remember very vividly, my brother A. D. looked over and in a tone of anger said: "I know what I'm going to do. The next car that comes along here and refuses to dim the lights, I'm going to fail to dim mine and pour them on in all of their power." And I looked at him right quick and said: "Oh no, don't do that. There'd be too much light on this highway, and it will end up in mutual destruction for all. Somebody got to have some sense on this highway."

“Somebody must have sense enough to dim the lights, and that is the trouble, isn't it? That as all of the civilizations of the world move up the highway of history, so many civilizations, having looked at other civilizations that refused to dim the lights, and they decided to refuse to dim theirs. And Toynbee tells that out of the twenty-two civilizations that have risen up, all but about seven have found themselves in the junk heap of destruction. It is because civilizations fail to have sense enough to dim the lights. And if somebody doesn't have sense enough to turn on the dim and beautiful and powerful lights of love in this world, the whole of our civilization will be plunged into the abyss of destruction. And we will all end up destroyed because nobody had any sense on the highway of history.

"Somewhere somebody must have some sense. Men must see that force begets force, hate begets hate, toughness begets toughness. And it is all a descending spiral, ultimately ending in destruction for all and everybody. Somebody must have sense enough and morality enough to cut off the chain of hate and the chain of evil in the universe. And you do that by love.

“There's another reason why you should love your enemies, and that is because hate distorts the personality of the hater. We usually think of what hate does for the individual hated or the individuals hated or the groups hated. But it is even more tragic, it is even more ruinous and injurious to the individual who hates. You just begin hating somebody, and you will begin to do irrational things. You can't see straight when you hate. You can't walk straight when you hate. You can't stand upright. Your vision is distorted. There is nothing more tragic than to see an individual whose heart is filled with hate. He comes to the point that he becomes a pathological case. For the person who hates, you can stand up and see a person and that person can be beautiful, and you will call them ugly. For the person who hates, the beautiful becomes ugly and the ugly becomes beautiful. For the person who hates, the good becomes bad and the bad becomes good. For the person who hates, the true becomes false and the false becomes true. That's what hate does. You can't see right. The symbol of objectivity is lost. Hate destroys the very structure of the personality of the hater.

“The way to be integrated with yourself is be sure that you meet every situation of life with an abounding love. Never hate, because it ends up in tragic, neurotic responses. Psychologists and psychiatrists are telling us today that the more we hate, the more we develop guilt feelings and we begin to subconsciously repress or consciously suppress certain emotions, and they all stack up in our subconscious selves and make for tragic, neurotic responses. And may this not be the neuroses of many individuals as they confront life that that is an element of hate there. And modern psychology is calling on us now to love. But long before modern psychology came into being, the world's greatest psychologist who walked around the hills of Galilee told us to love. He looked at men and said:

"Love your enemies; don't hate anybody." It's not enough for us to hate your friends because—to to love your friends—because when you start hating anybody, it destroys the very center of your creative response to life and the universe; so love everybody. Hate at any point is a cancer that gnaws away at the very vital center of your life and your existence. It is like eroding acid that eats away the best and the objective center of your life. So Jesus says love, because hate destroys the hater as well as the hated.

“Now there is a final reason I think that Jesus says, "Love your enemies." It is this: that love has within it a redemptive power. And there is a power there that eventually transforms individuals. That's why Jesus says, "Love your enemies." Because if you hate your enemies, you have no way to redeem and to transform your enemies. But if you love your enemies, you will discover that at the very root of love is the power of redemption. You just keep loving people and keep loving them, even though they're mistreating you. Here's the person who is a neighbor, and this person is doing something wrong to you and all of that. Just keep being friendly to that person. Keep loving them. Don't do anything to embarrass them. Just keep loving them, and they can't stand it too long. Oh, they react in many ways in the beginning. They react with bitterness because they're mad because you love them like that. They react with guilt feelings, and sometimes they'll hate you a little more at that transition period, but just keep loving them. And by the power of your love they will break down under the load. That's love, you see. It is redemptive, and this is why Jesus says love. There's something about love that builds up and is creative. There is something about hate that tears down and is destructive. So love your enemies.

“There is a power in love that our world has not discovered yet. Jesus discovered it centuries ago. Mahatma Gandhi of India discovered it a few years ago, but most men and most women never discover it. For they believe in hitting for hitting; they believe in an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth; they believe in hating for hating; but Jesus comes to us and says, "This isn't the way."

“As we look out across the years and across the generations, let us develop and move right here. We must discover the power of love, the power, the redemptive power of love. And when we discover that we will be able to make of this old world a new world. We will be able to make men better. Love is the only way. Jesus discovered that.

“And our civilization must discover that. Individuals must discover that as they deal with other individuals. There is a little tree planted on a little hill and on that tree hangs the most influential character that ever came in this world. But never feel that that tree is a meaningless drama that took place on the stages of history. Oh no, it is a telescope through which we look out into the long vista of eternity, and see the love of God breaking forth into time. It is an eternal reminder to a power-drunk generation that love is the only way. It is an eternal reminder to a generation depending on nuclear and atomic energy, a generation depending on physical violence, that love is the only creative, redemptive, transforming power in the universe.

“So this morning, as I look into your eyes, and into the eyes of all of my brothers in Alabama and all over America and over the world, I say to you, "I love you. I would rather die than hate you." And I'm foolish enough to believe that through the power of this love somewhere, men of the most recalcitrant bent will be transformed. And then we will be in God's kingdom.”