T Nation

What if the Church Went Galt?


Link: http://www.ncregister.com/blog/what-if-the-church-went-galt

I have heard it said on here before that the world would be better place without the Catholic Church. Well, I don't find it too appealing to take away such things from the poor, sick, elderly, hungry, and the homeless.


Wait, who is [John] Galt?

My charitable donations go through my church. Our diocese has a 97% efficiency rate (only 3% administrative cost). What a better place the world would be if government entitlements were given over to the church.


Are you assuming people wouldn't form other humanitarian organizations? "The Church" isnt an entity upon itself - its a large organization with many philanthropic members. Were it disbanded, those members would still want to help others.


That go for the charity of government too?


not a religious person - but I do appreciate the mormons where I live and all the good work they do for the community. Honestly, I think they are the primary reason why it is such a good place to live.

i dont know what the mormon charitable donation efficiency rate is, but it has to be very high as they have a very minimal amount of staff that are actually paid anything at all. all my donations for the tsunami a couple years back went through them as they were the only ones I knew of guaranteeing 100% pass thru to the victims of all donated money.


This. The charitable and the generous will give as long as there is a way to give. The Church is not the only way. There are probably some that give to charity elusively because of their religion, and would not if it were not for promises of salvation. These people are selfish, and I suspect that they are in the minority. Charity would by and large find another route.

Although, this is not to belittle the Church's humanitarian work, which has been an invaluable force of good in the world for a long time.


I honestly probably wouldn't donate if I didn't attend church. Not because I'm expecting it to get me into heaven, but just because it's made me a better person. Plus it is easier since I'm there anyway.


I dont follow. Should the government go Galt? Too much ironic.


lol. I'm asking if people would fill in for government programs.

I'd also note that in your first post, it almost sounded like you were saying churches were full of good people...


it is truly good that Church has made you a better person. My point was simply that many people would give to charity regardless of religious scruples. I do, and I am agnostic and firmly anti-religion.


It is very well possible that they would create other humanitarian organizations if the Church disappeared (I know they would, because I created a local charity back in the day), but would they be the same? Would they be as big? Would they be as diversified? Would they be able to stand up against teach unions? Look at the other organizations, how much money do they keep for admin purposes?

I maybe wrong, but let's look at the facts. There is still people that are jobless, hungry, homeless, without education, &c. where are the 'other' humanitarian organizations for these people that the Catholic Church hasn't covered? Is it because the Catholic Church steals all the charitable people? No, because you still have Red Cross, Shriners, Masons.

I think the reason is because the Church instills virtues in order to do it on a scale this big. Although, I still think the Church's charitable organizations are a little wimpy in America right now.


Sure they are. They just teach some things I disagree with.

And, honestly, I dont know. I doubt it. But the charity of the Church is entirely voluntary, taxes are not. I dont think the two are a fair comparison.


Hm. Good points.

However, pointing out certain aspects of the Catholic Church (such as it being an effective humanitarian organization) does not mean that the specific teachings of the Catholic Church are true, or that Catholics are "better" than non-Catholics.


Yep. Though, relatively little in the realm of voluntary. Mostly it would be through taxation and redistribution. Well, until demographic reality makes that impossible. Then it's every man for himself.


your right, people could form other humanitarian organizations. we could call it the Center for Science in the Public Interest . . .

seriously though, the best bang for your buck is generally through churches. a friend on mine that used to work for united way said only 10 cents on the dollar reached a person in need. that is a horrible statistic.




I only go through the LDS church. There is 0 overhead thanks to volunteer work.


Brother Chris, you make a good point. And for all that I bash the fundamental tenets of Christianity (and religion in general) on these forums, it must be noted that much benevolence in the world is contingent upon the existence of organized religion.


Well said and might I add very open minded of you to mention given your position on religion.


That figure of 10% is spot on. In addition to that United Way is famous for helping fund feminist causes and planned parent hood. Certainly others may disagree, but that's not where I want my hard earned dollars going.

I give to various causes but I make sure that they are local and I know where the money is going. For example, someone in need of a kidney transplant, or other major surgery. And of course I give to my Church every Sunday.

It's interesting how some people actually believe that other organizations would step up if there were no Church. They have that same false impression about good morals being taken up by others if there were no Church. Both are absolutely false! The Church whether you love it or hate it is the difference between some eating properly or going without. And the same can be said for its moral guidance. If someday there is no Church and no Christianity, that will be the end of civilization as we know it.