"You cannot legislate the poor into freedom by legislating the wealthy out of freedom. What one person receives without working for, another person must work for without receiving. The government cannot give to anybody anything that the government does not first take from somebody else. When half of the people get the idea that they do not have to work because the other half is going to take care of them, and when the other half gets the idea that it does no good to work because somebody else is going to get what they work for, that my dear friend, is the end of any nation. You cannot multiply wealth by dividing it."
by:
Dr. Adrian Rogers
(1931-2005) American pastor
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Some of this thinking was borrowed from Bastiat's "The Law". And it's as simple, sensible and logical as it can be. So how did we end up with a Government policy of "Spreading the Wealth" ? It's a policy of destruction. Get prepared.
 -- J Carlton, Calgary     
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    Liberals are always yakking about soaking the rich with more taxes. To the simple of mind this always sounds like a good idea and it buys some votes. It's a little like the idiocy of government setting a minimum wage.
     -- jim k, Austin,Tx     
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    Eighteen year olds have such clear insights into fantasy...
     -- Anonymous, Reston, VA, US     
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    THERE IS NO FREE LUNCH.
     -- cal, lewisville, tx     
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    Dr. Adrian Rogers, for years, pastored one of the largest Baptist congregations in the nation. I had a child live within minutes of his church, and though my child or I didn't agree with him on many religious tenets, Rogers was well know for his generosity, helping the poor and, his congregation's personal charity. Under fiscal law and the applied principle of freely giving, as is averse to forced gifts, the here subject topic is stated very accurately. Again, religion is "real piety in practice, consisting in the performance of all known duties to God and our fellow men." (Bouvier's Law Dictionary) That duty to our fellow men, a theocracy's religious tenant, that includes theft of the worker for purposes of extolling stolen booty on the non-worker is a prime example of the constitutional violation against "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof" (1st Amendment) Feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, etc. is a religious activity and lawfully has nothing to do with the secularly limitations to life, liberty or property. Such violation at law has moral and fiscal consequences
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    All very interesting replies none of which accounts for the fact that we live in a society where all our needs are met through the use of tax dollars. When some (the majority) are the only ones paying the taxes that are used for the "general welfare" of all then there is no point in discussing the "dividing of wealth". We now live in a society where the majority are slowly being undercut by the greed of the wealthy who are like the great robber barons of our early history. They care nothing for those who make their businesses prosper by working in their companies and buying their products. They are conducting more business offshore, making profit their god while they slowly deplete Americans who made their profits in the first place. What is the point of this talk of "redistribution of wealth" when there is not a person among us that does not benefit from being taxed---education, public welfare, protection of public lands, infrastructure, police and fire protection, military and on. Do you want the fire department to come to your house and demand payment before they put out the fire, or the police to do the same? That's what we should expect from a government without taxation. And the great amount of talk now about the deficit---we just went through at least 10 years where the robber barons were given their heads, no regulations, little or no taxes, no inheritance tax (this being the last year before we go back to taxes being levied against amounts over 3.5 million for individuals and 7.5 for couples--that's right OVER those amounts) but listen how the very rich scream about paying---threaten that they will not be able to reinvest. So tell me, what have they been doing for the last 10 years while the laws favored them to the extreme? Did they reinvest? Did they bring the jobs back that they shipped overseas? Did they do anything but stick their billions in their own accounts some here but as many if not more offshore as well. If they don't like living in the US of A, then perhaps they should take themselves somewhere else as well--somewhere they can take everything at the expense of everyone else! Then maybe we'll get some jobs from some real entrepreneurs who realize what great opportunities lie even in a country that levies taxes mostly in their favor!
     -- Joy, Papillion, NE     
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    By the way, did anyone notice the date of that quote---another time of the great robber barons who plotted an (unsuccessful) overthrow of the government under FDR--one of their own who did realize the great opportunities which lie even in a country that levies taxes especially on the rich!
     -- Joy, Papillion, NE     
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    Mike, I disagree with your view that this is about "charity". But if you want to attribute charity to a religious activity than I can tell you that very few people in this country who find themselves in extremes would find help from religious charity. Yes, they have their hero's and they have their organizations but with 50,000,000 out of work and some of them for several years--there is charity that can help them. However, Constitutionally speaking, the preamble has this to say: "We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defence and promote the GENERAL WELFARE,,,,etc" Circumstance does not always allow the average citizen the rights guaranteed by our Constitution. Most people in this country today, if they are fortunate enough to have a job are working poor--most work two sometimes even three jobs which still do not put them over the poverty line. Most Americans would rather work than be on Welfare and that's a fact. But Welfare is something that many could not live without--something that is LESS about charity and more about providing for the general welfare. The great recession caused by Republican neglect of the majority in favor of the very wealthy, will continue unless taxation returns to what is fair for those earn billions while many in this country are jobless, homeless, hungry and in poor health--through no fault of their own. Even Jesus said that the poor would always be with us--those "poor" should be helped by religious charity but having been a part of the "great" religion for most of my life, I rarely saw that principle applied by its members!
     -- Joy, Papillion, NE     
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    Joy...nothing is done by way of tax dollars. Nothing. All government spending is done by way of loans from the central bank. Your tax dollar, every dime of it goes to pay the interest on those loans. In this method all taxation is unnaccountable and will never be borught under control. Pretty sweet deal for both the politicians and their wreckless spending as well as the central bankers who loan money created out of thin air and make profits at a rate they themselves are allowed to set. That's one hell of a gig if you can get it. Unfortunately it equates exactly into eternal economic servitude and explains why we are seen as "inventory".
     -- J Carlton, Calgary     
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    Joy, is there to be any limit as to what we must depend on government for? Who decides what our compulsory education will be? The issue is not that we have become dependent upon government for all our needs, the issue is why? By what right can the government force massive unpayable debts upon the people? Do you realize that America thrived without all this centralized control? Who do you think are the robber barons of today? I would say those that claim ownership of our lands, our labors, even every 'dollar' in our bank accounts -- whose side is Obama on? Bush? My friend, the 'social services' you have become dependent upon are actually your own responsibility to provide -- certainly you could do it better and more efficiently than our current government whose only solution is to 'borrow' more from the very robber barons you supposedly abhor. I believe you are hacking at the branches instead of the root. As far as charity goes, it should always be an individual choice, not a blanket immunity from personal responsibility. Taxation must be based on strict rules of jurisprudence, not at the whim and behest of a 'vote' in Congress. Congress must follow the rules and limits set by the Constitution -- they cannot just do anything they want. Taxation of people's labors is theft. Taxation of people's property already owned and paid for is theft. Congress is authorized to tax goods NOT LABOR -- excise taxes are all they are authorized to lay. As well, we are supposed to be using real money for trade, not enslaved to an interest bearing script for which all our progressive taxes merely pay the interest on. The ends do NOT justify the means. We are paying too much now for crappy service (education, medicare, security). We could purchase the same services for a fraction of the costs and would be trading with our fellow countrymen instead of paying tribute to the banksters, today's robber barons.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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    Joy, you made me smile. Go ahead and keep uniquely watching MSNBC so you can keep dummying down, being justified in your shallow, non-realistic socialist utopia. Your use of tax benefit is far too broad. As to education, my home schooled children didn't get socialist propaganda extolling their inalienable right to have someone take care of them for their entire life because forced redistribution of wealth is a natural fiscal law. I've tried to subpoena this public you reference, I can't find his address; all along the while, private lands are taken away from the individual sovereigns. If police were reduced to a few county sheriff, people would once again begin to take responsibility for themselves, have far fewer criminal role models, have less tyranny enforced on them, and drastically reduce financial slavery. Private fire departments are not as your fear mongering would suggest, but in reality, much more efficient than public services. A constitutionally non-standing army wouldn't cause the blow-back and financial drain we're currently suffering under. Contrary to your liberal rantings about business leaving for profit, such is only criminally naive at best. Its obvious you've never had a business of your own where you produced wealth (beyond the service industry). It is government regulation, even beyond the destructive taxes, that is killing business. Why invest, or reinvest when, ever escalating regulations and taxes make it so difficult, if not impossible, to create a commercial venture that will produce wealth (it being almost doomed to failure from the start; many of the companies with the best insurance coverages are being dropped because of the new forced health care statutes; I'm thinking of closing my doors on my business, even though its profitable, because of the extreme hoops I must jump through). And, by the way, the greedy wealthy that are killing the country with impunity are the liberals such as Soros and the head of such companies as GE. Joy, it is not moral, ethical, lawful, or just to rob from anyone.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    Joy, you can redefine the General Welfare, contrary to the founders intent and writings but that still wouldn't make it moral, lawful or just. Jefferson, Adams, and others have declared the meaning of General Welfare as the government itself not, We The People. The representative republic was based on the lawful premise that the government was not an organic hegemony in toto aloof from We The People but rather, a mere servant, representing 'We The People' (individually and in concert) The government can do nothing for me (or you or anyone else) than I can not do for my self. The promotion of the General Welfare was the general welfare of the government, so it could perform its representation.You can't add socialist theocracy solutions to fix socialist's problems. If it wasn't for the socialist's (Democrat / Republican, Communist / Fascist, Liberal / Neo-Conservative) unconstitutional / unlawful -anti-natural fiscal law dogmas in statute form, there wouldn't be 50,000,000 out of work. Carlton and Archer said very well. Why is it do you suppose, the most socialistic / liberal states (California, New York, etc.) are the most financial upside down and have a declining population? There are natural fiscal laws and when man attempts to become a law unto himself, he will suffer under the consequence just the same. Also, why is it do you suppose, that the socialist left and right are complaining about job loss while no one is lifting a voice to why the traditional American entrepreneurial hero has be so silenced and isn't arising to the occasion? Because, it would once again expose the banking, funny money, and the repressive socialist dogmas of the statist theocracy infesting this land.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    Joy, our experiences have been very different. Katrina relief for one. My church group, at personal expense, made the long journey once a week for over 2 years to help in the clean up and rebuild. There were many more church people there than government. Church goers took in far more of the displaced than government provided housing for, etc., etc. Haiti has also experienced a much larger religious presence than government. My family's weekly help in meals, food and otherwise is through religious endeavors. I've given my personal experience here multiple times over the years but my young family didn't have as much as a car to sleep in. A few meals were provided by various religious groups until I could financially get back on my feet. I did not take from the stolen booty that government provides. No one owes me a life style, life support, or anything else. As to the education, those children of mine that experienced that time started college at age 15 and had at least 10 yrs college education (a minimum of 15 credits each semester) without as much as a loan, grant or help from me. We are all very close and spend a lot of time helping others. Rogers was absolutely correct, you cannot multiply wealth by dividing it through forced redistribution of wealth. To the regular contributors here that I'm aware of, Archer also, though not my religious experience, has a phenomenal story contradicting your assumptions.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    Laziness is a sin. There are too many people in this country who do not want to work. Many feel that certain jobs are below them. This is pride. Pride is also a sin. What is the solution? The solution is the Gospel. It needs to be preached in the streets of our nation, in parks, in the marketplace. Everywhere. Not just in Churches. People need to learn the power of prayer. They need to meet Jesus, His power and His love.
     -- Robert, Chula Vista     
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    Our democracy shall cease when we remove the labors of those who worked for it, and give to those who would not. All the perplexities, confusion and distress in America arise not from defects in their Constitution, nor from want of honor or virtue, so much is downright ignorance of the nature of coin, credit and circulation. If the people of the voting booths are ignorant, inform them. If the people of the government are ignorant, remove them. And yes, Robert, "If God is for us, who can be against us." Romans 8:31. This nation must always remain with Him, so He will be for us.
     -- Publius, USA     
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     -- Publius, USA      
    Joy has misinterpreted what the quote means. The phrase "to PROMOTE the General Welfare" is NOT the same as PROVIDE for the general welfare. There are some that will always need to be cared for such as, elderly, children, mentally and physically disabled. But technically it is not the duty of the government by the Constitution to provide that care. It should be voluntary and charitable. And that is how it was handled for many years. The main thing that changed everything was, the FED and the mishandling of the economy by Progressives over a long period which resulted in the collapse that triggered the depression. The programs that came out of the much lauded presidency of FDR and his administration were actually responsible for the prolonging of the depression.
     -- Carol, Georgia     
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    Do not be mistaken Carol. Socialism is not attempting to PROVIDE for the General Welfare. Socialism is the CONTROL of the General Welfare. As I'm sure you will agree, this CONTROL is immoral, unconstitutional, contrary to the cause of liberty, and never falls within the realm of justice.
     -- Publius     
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    Rogers assumes that the rich are the governed half, the poor the governing half. Rogers' first flaw the rich are not half, they are at most 20%, and often far fewer. Rogers' second and fatal flaw the rich don't work, they manage corporations they own. Therefore they never get the idea that it is no good to work. They get the idea that they need to crash the economy and thereby disempower workers an economic state called depression. Oneye Quote (Government by the rich few) "You can indeed temporarily legislate the rich into wealth by legislating the poor out of wealth. However, eventually comes blowback. For a wealthy person to receive without hiring or risk, a hundred workers must be enslaved. What the government gives it takes from the taxpayers. When the rich get the idea that they do not have to risk because the taxpayers will take the risk, when the rich get the idea that they do not have to hire because taxpayer money will flow into their pockets anyway, and when the majority gets the idea that it does no good to work because the wealthy are going to get what they work for anyway, that my rich and violent enemy, is the end of the nation. You cannot indefinitely concentrate wealth by stealing it."
     -- Oneye, USA     
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    I am a single mother of 2 making less than 40k a year. Because I have many expenses I claim 7 dependents so I can keep more money in my check rather than getting it back when the government feels like giving it to me. I am still paying taxes of 26%! So over 1/4 of my check goes to the government to redistribute. Is this fair? Am I rich? If the "Bush tax cuts" wouldn't have been extended then I would be giving up 33% or 1/3rd of my check. Liberal thinking says that the "rich" don't pay enough taxes. People making 250k are currently taxed at a rate of 38%. Which means they would pay 95k a year (just in federal taxes. So this doesn't include state income tax or property tax). If someone makes 1m a year and lets say they only have to pay the same 38%. They will pay in federal taxes 350k. Why is it that the liberals cannot do math? The Bush tax cuts mostly helped the poor and middle class. It added a 10% and 14% tax bracket. If Congress does not extend the taxes in 2012, then it is safe to say that the poorest people (those who are willing to work) will be required to pay 25% instead of the lower rates Bush added. So 1/4th of their check will go to pay for those who do not want to work or all of those who refuse to take a job beneath them. Everyone knows that there are way too many people on these social programs who are abusing the system. If the government would actually do more to police these programs instead of policing those who work, then liberals would see that there will be more money for the "General welfare".
     -- Anonymous, South Bend, IN     
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    I do not doubt that Dr. Rogers made this quote. Whether he did or didn't I agree with it. However, he could not have said it in 1931, because he was born in 1931 not in 1913 as the above bio indicates.
     -- CRN, Ala     
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     -- chen      
    Oneye, Rogers didnt assume anything as you wrongfully claim in your socialist rant.
    He didnt mention rich v poor because that is not the issue.
    The issue is anyone, rich, poor or otherwise who receives $ without working for it is unfair. They can be the rich elite banksters or poor car thieves. It makes no difference to the moral. Theft is theft. The poor btw have no justification for stealing, often from each other, just because they r poor, any more than the banksters being bailed out at tax payer expense.

    As for what is "work" you obviously have little idea & minimal education. Work is NOT just digging holes in the sweltering summer sun. Work is any activity, including intellectual.


     -- Justice, Melbourne     
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     -- Angie, Green Valley AZ      
    This man said "I believe slavery is a much maligned institution; if we had slavery today, we would not have this welfare mess."

    You may allow him to posthumously claim to be a Christian but if that is truly the case, it seems odd that he would oppose the most basic of Christ's teachings. He even extolled state-ordered executions as "spiritually ordained!"

    I don't consider Dr Adrian Rogers an authority on anything but willful ignorance.
     -- JH, Valatie, NY     
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    I think if Dr. Adrian Rogers really wrote this, that is was very nearsighted. What were we put here to do? Jesus showed us while He was on earth. There has always been taxes and always will be. I prefer my taxes money go to education and the care of the helpless in our society, than to war and it's machines. I know that taxes have to be collected or we couldn't operate as a country. To talk about people getting free stuff, is not helpful in any way.
     -- Mrs. L. Wood, Paradise     
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    JH, Valatie, Ny, your ignorance of Adrian Rogers and what he said or didn't say is nothing short of idiocy. Don't malaign someone by making false statements.

    Mrs. L. Wood, Paradise, you also do not understand the quote nor its context if that is all you get from it. Since you want to bring up Jesus in this conversation, you might want to read HIM when He said, let him who will not work, not eat. I will take His word over your anyday.
     -- SH, Orlando     
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    My wife and I literally had less than $1,000 in our savings account when we got married and in the early years there were many sleepless nights, literally and figuratively. We never received hand outs from family, friends, or the government. We paid back our student loans. We worked hard, raised three kids who went through college, and can now retire very well with no debt, not even a house payment, at 60 years old because we lived within out means and didn't live on credit. We get incensed when we read about half the nation making a way of life on some form of government subsidy. We have no issue with a helping hand but we take exceptional issue with making hand outs a way of life. We didn't do everything right but if you work during the day, attend night school on loans, even grants for good grades, there is no excuse to not elevate your position. We had nothing but our pride and a strong work ethic, something anyone can do. If you are poor in this country, even illegal, there is no excuse to not attend community college or vocational training. Stop whining about what you don't have. We started with nothing, and there is no reason people can't work for the american dream like we did. We aren't the bad guys because we understood a strong work ethic, higher education that is accessible to anyone who can't afford it (maybe not Harvard but good community colleges) and how to live within your means. Have neighbors that obviously were more successful than us and I would never dream of knocking on their door and asking for some of what they have and the government should either, or demonize those who work hard. Before anyone criticizes we believe in taxes to support schools, police, etc, but we also believe you have to live within your means and stop making one time surpluses into never ending social programs.
     -- john, button     
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    I see this quote popping up. Clearly being used by the "Right" too shove the wedge a little deeper between what is best for our nation as a whole. It's clearly a "Dog Whistle" comment to infuriate lemmings on the right. If only people would put some deep thought into it and see the real meaning behind it maybe then we as a nation will grow stronger and better.
     -- Jack B., Elgin     
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    Joy, for just one statement concerning "general welfare" by a founder of the Constitution, Thomas Jefferson wrote: To lay taxes to provide for the general welfare of the United States, that is to say, 'to lay taxes for the purpose of providing for the general welfare.' For the laying of taxes is the power, and the general welfare the purpose for which the power is to be exercised. They are not to lay taxes ad libitum for any purpose they please; but only to pay the debts or provide for the welfare of the Union. (Thomas Jefferson)
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    Lots of good dialogue from concerned citizens. So what are we doing about these concerns?
     -- David, Mannington, NJ     
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    Great comments ! Publius makes an interesting statement quoting Romans 8:31, in response. I do not dispute good intentions by Protestantism at large, but the baggage of private interpretation of scripture or natural law is distorted on Purpose. By mingling of the doctrines of mosaic law and Works, with the distinct Doctrines of Liberty. It is always a slight of hand to replace confidence with doubt. You either are or you are not AT LIBERTY. Never to be mistaken for " Maybe so. " Free will support separates children form Adults. The Gospel Paul preaches as he states is His Gospel, 13 times, and his unity at Liberty are undeniable, and very few if any " Clergy men " embrace such Pure Doctrine for it will isolate them and cause the " steady paycheck to disappear. No Doubt. Those 85 pages, thirteen books written by the thirteenth apostle, the Chief Sinner and best attorney at large/to date, Still stand Strong as the only Testimony of Freedom At Liberty with Natural laws of God as our guide to true piety. If one does by nature the things contained in the law, then we find they are a law unto myself, their Conscience Bearing witness in/with the Holy ( separate ) Spirit of Truth, which proceeds for the Creator. His active agent, by which all life exist. To even imply it is OK to tax away hearth and Home by any religious or state organization is treasonous to God purpose in grace and Liberty ordained by the innocent Blood and all other blood shed in its defense !! Doubt breeds contempt for True and Pure Liberty, of which, our Founding Fathers tried so hard to distinguish by separation of a churches " Private interpretation of what Liberty is, and to what degree we have it !
     -- Ronw13, Yachats OR     
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    " Careless seems the Great Avenger; history's page but record One death-grapple in the darkness 'twist old systems and the word; Truth forever on the scaffold, Wrong forever on the throne,-Yet the scaffold sways the future, and, behind the dime unknown, Standeth God within the shadow, keeping watch above His own. We see dimly in the Present what is small and what is great, Slow of faith how weak an arm mat turn the iron helm of fate, But the soul is still Oracle; amid the market din, List the omnious stern whisper from the Delphic cave within,- " They enslave their children's children who make compromise with sin " They have rights who dare maintain them. "
    The Present Crisis, James Russell Lowell 1819 to 1891
     -- Ronw13, Yachats OR     
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    I think there are a lot of greedy, sanctimonious jackasses replying to this odious quote. The more someone claims loudly to be a Christian, the more I distrust him or her.
     -- Josie, London     
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    Complete freaking hoax!
    He NEVER said that!!!!
    Yet, idiots will believe any freaking thing on the internet that fits their feeble thinking!
    You all are for the most part not very smart people.
     -- Joe Schmoe, Iowa     
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    I really can't believe what this so called Christian is saying, and the evil souls that follow him. What did Jesus teach them? Why are they twisting the teachings to pure EVIL!
     -- David, Dublin     
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    Its a lovely idealistic quote and if Adrian Rogers did say it, he didn't say it in 1931!! He was only just born in 1931 !!!!
     -- Gail Watson, Tully     
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    After reading Rogers' quote and the many responses I feel as though criticism is a natural response.My age is 64 and Rogers age at death is 74 so he did what came natural to him in his occupation,but my job was climbing power poles and trying to keep electricity on so in response to the many conclusions I've read the most formidible problems in our society would be GREED !
     -- James Gurley, Wade,MS     
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    How can you not see the clarity of this quote? Dr. Rogers is right. If we allow the Federal Government decide who gets what, that's really smart, not! People for the most part are generous. I live in Mississippi, 2005, Hurricane Katrina! Does that ring a bell? It was churches bringing in food and supplies and even monetary gifts, not the Federal Government. I know I was there! So if you cripple a man by taking what he has earned and giving to those who refuse to work (some exceptions), before long no one will have anything. Look at Greece! Why do all the rich Brits and Canadians come here for health care? because Socialism/ Communism doesn't work! Sure Capitalism produces rich people, but without rich people there are no JOBS! Its smoke and mirrors! The Liberals want it all so that you will need them. That's called bondage, not FREEDOM!
     -- Steve, Hickory, MS     
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