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What’s Wrong With Government?
The Plain Truth – January 1985
What’s Wrong With Government?

from Herbert W. Armstrong

Leaders of the world, WAKE UP! – or face human extinction! The world, as 1985 comes upon us, is fraught with troubles and evils seemingly past human remedy. SURVIVAL is now our number one problem!

It appears now that if weapons of mass destruction do not soon erase mankind from the earth, the population explosion will!

There has to be a CAUSE for every effect. Too often people try to find solutions by dealing with effects. But until CAUSES are removed, the effects will not just go away. In the imperative search for causes we find six major facets that have made civilization what it is: government, business and industry, science and technology, modern education, organized labor, religion.

Where have these gone wrong?

Civilization is what its leaders have made it, and education is the alma mater of the leaders. They are largely what the educational system made them. Education has succumbed to intellectual materialism. Knowledge of the TRUE VALUES was jettisoned somewhere along the way. Humanity’s problems are spiritual in nature and a materialistic knowledge cannot understand or solve them.

The United States has been concerned with a presidential election. So we take, now, a quick overview of government. What has government contributed either to the cause or the solution of present escalating evils?

Over the years I have been invited to personal conferences with numerous heads of state – kings, emperors, presidents, prime ministers – and others high in government under them, in many other countries.

I have said often to them that there are only TWO WAYS or philosophies of life, broadly speaking. And these travel in opposite directions. One will produce peace, universal prosperity and well-being. The other will CAUSE precisely what we have in the world today!

I simplify these two basic motivations so even a child can understand. One is the way of “GET” – the other the way of “GIVE.”

“GET” is the way of self-centeredness, vanity, covetousness, envy, jealousy, hostility, resentment of authority over one. “GIVE” is the way of outflowing LOVE – concern for the well-being of neighbor equal to self-concern. It is the way of helping, serving, sharing, of kindness, consideration, goodwill.

GOVERNMENT is that organized authority over the people to ensure by law and order to each the freedoms and liberties that do not infringe on the lawful rights and liberties of others.

But politicians govern in a world living the “GET” way of life. Government should produce a contented, happy, peaceful and prosperous society.

Politicians have grown up in this world addicted to the way of “GET.” It would indeed be naive to suppose they have not absorbed the “GET” motivation. Nothing in their educational training inculcated the “give” incentive. So it is normal that they have followed the old saying, “Jones pays the freight, give Jones what he wants.”

Now Jones wants to “GET” from government. And political candidates want to “GET” Jones’ votes. But Jones is divided in many group votes. What one faction may want to “GET” from government too often collides with another. The candidate often walks a tightrope, and to win both faction votes the candidate sometimes succumbs to making promises he can’t deliver.

If the public wants to “GET” from government, we must not suppose political candidates do not covet power. So in government we have the merry-go-round of people trying to “GET” from government, and politicians using every strategy to “GET” or retain power!

What, after all, has government contributed to the present state of society – the nation and the world? Government has not corrected or changed the human nature way of “GET,” but operated with it. And every evil dragging this sick world toward cosmocide has been CAUSED by the “GET” nature in MAN! We call it human nature.

But we need government. The alternative would be anarchy!

Governments of nations over the world do work for PEACE – even fight and war for PEACE! And we still have wars. I know that the responsibility of the chief office in government weighs heavily on men in such high office. I have talked with many heads of state who admit privately that they face problems beyond human power to solve.

Some world leaders have said humanity’s only hope lies in a single WORLD government over all nations, with only one military force. Yet in the same breath they admit the impossibility of man to produce it.

An editorial some time ago in U.S. News & World Report stated it a different way – that it would now seem the only hope for human survival lies in the intervention of a “strong hand from someplace”!

The Plain Truth announces, believe it or not, both these solutions will happen in our lifetime. MANKIND won’t change human nature, nor set up the world government – doesn’t even have to believe it – BUT IT WILL HAPPEN TO US! And in this generation we shall see a new WORLD TOMORROW, with universal well-being for all.