Oklahoma Couldn’t Elect Someone Worse Than Sen. James Inhofe, Right?

Wrong. Very, very wrong. Suffice it to say, the new kid on the block isn’t a Keynesian or MMT/MMR sympathizer (boldface mine):

Oklahoma Senator-elect James Lankford says his “biblical worldview” will guide his actions in the upper chamber.

“Budget, for me, is still a huge area. The people have started to step back and say, ‘Well, our deficit is only $480 billion now so we are doing much better in deficit.’ We still have $480 billion. That’s a big deal,” the Republican congressman and Baptist minister told Family Research Council president Tony Perkins on Wednesday.

“I come from a biblical worldview in the way I address issues,” Lankford said. “I look at Nehemiah and how he handled things when he stepped into Jerusalem. It was that the people were in disgrace and the wall was broken down, but the two things that he focused in on was the constructive side of things and the debt. Half of the Book of Nehemiah is just getting the people out of debt, so they could actually take on the other things.”

“We can’t handle national defense right now, we can’t handle a lot of things that we need to and that need to be driven by the states because we have so much debt… We have proved that our nation really is slave to the lender.”

Unfortunately for Lankford (and the rest of us), economies no longer function like they did two and a half millennia ago. We are no longer limited by the amount of shiny pebbles we can dig up from the ground (or take from someone else). We aren’t on the gold standard anymore. If we need more money, we can create it. You might not like the implications of that (it seems to freak out goldbugs), but what it means is that we are only limited by constraints in the real economy: resource shortages (including human ones) and misallocation of resources. Neither defense spending nor infrastructure spending (nor science spending, nor… well, you get the idea) can, in an operational sense, be limited by a shortage of dollars at the federal level (it might be bad policy, but that’s a separate issue).

Someone this ignorant has no business governing our country. This really is the economic equivalent of young earth creationism.

And the congregation responds: This is yet another reason why we can’t have nice things.

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4 Responses to Oklahoma Couldn’t Elect Someone Worse Than Sen. James Inhofe, Right?

  1. harrync says:

    I sometimes think conservative Christians have a different Bible than the one I have. I can’t find any worry about public debt in Nehemiah, but a lot of worry about private debt. Nehemiah castigates the usurers who held the common people in debt bondage [Nehemiah 5:7], and ordered debt forgiveness [5:11]. He also found the infrastructure [the walls of Jerusalem] in disrepair and ordered a massive public works project. And he did not worry that it would put a burden on the people to achieve this. I am sure Lankford would have been among the naysayers – Hey, we can’t afford to donate our labor to the project, we have other personal priorities.

  2. anthrosciguy says:

    That kind of debt relief would’ve been a much better reaction to the bank/mortgage crisis. Instead of giving the money to banks, creating an ongoing moral hazard, you simply forgive mortgages, creating a one-time moral hazard. And the banks and their investors would have learned, through loss of money, to be more careful in the future.

  3. The conflating of US government debt, and Americans’ individual debt is a convenient and insidious deceit.
    For those who don’t understand they’re not the same, or even similar, the lie sounds so much more “right”, believable, and intuitive.
    For those of us who do understand they’re not the same, it’s very hard in a similar length blurb to explain and correct the lie.

    Also, if he truly wanted to take the Biblical route… Wouldn’t he be pushing for laws against private lending usury, and insistent about keeping religion out of taxation policies?

  4. albanaeon says:

    I shall await his proposal for a Jubilee at any time.

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