What about Fraud?

What about fraud? Won’t people simply lie to the system in order to get resources that they really don’t need.

Of course they will. The system will need to be designed to accept this kind of fraud up front. People already lie to the systems of welfare that are currently in existence, this is nothing new. The problem is that the systems we currently have also entrench political authority within the hands of a corrupt government and their corporate cronies, and then that authority is used to oppress you and me.

Fraud should be a concern, but remember that the purpose of the system is to offset political dependency, not to actually reform people trapped in a lifestyle of poverty. That is the actual work of the ministry of the church, and of other social organizations focused on these kinds of personal development.

To put your mind at ease about accepting this fraud, please consider a couple of things. First the system will not tolerate any kind of fraud at its core. It will only do exactly what it is programmed to do according to the principles outline by the community and the individual groups establishing resources within the system. So even if fraud is perpetrated at the edge of the system to receive a resource, the resource will not be allocated unless the criteria for allocating it are met. Over time and through competition and experimentation, the criteria for allocating resources will reach an optimum balance that attracts the dependent class in order to offset their political authority, while at the same time maximizing the ability of the available resources to meet legitimate needs. This as opposed to our current system of social welfare which often seeks to minimize the meeting of legitimate needs and maximize the political authority derived from the transaction.

The outrage we are taught to feel with regard to the poor for defrauding systems of social welfare for their own gain is another distraction from the real problems plaguing our society. Many social welfare programs that exist within the church and charities spend an inordinate amount of energy attempting to develop criteria so that they never give any money away to people. As a former pastor I have been involved with these systems and have personally told people we could not pay their $100 electricity bill because we felt that they had failed to live up to some moral standard we had established, all while we had at least $10,000 in the bank at any given time specifically designated to meeting these kind of needs. We claimed that our duty to be “good stewards” of “God’s money” compelled us to make these kinds of hard decisions, but I often wonder if God would not have rather seen us spend the $100 on a lie, and used the situation as an opportunity to develop a relationship with the people depending upon our charity.

We have been convinced that the lying poor are the source of all of our society’s ills as they try to con us out of a $100 electric bill, or defraud the food stamp program in order to buy liquor or cigarettes. As if these nickel and dime indiscretions pose some kind of real threat to our economic system. We have been blinded or desensitized to the fraud that is at the core of our government that are the lying rich who are stealing trillions of dollars to bail out their fraudulent corporate friends, and they even go so far as waging wars to make it happen.

We focus our attention on the tiny specks of fraud that exist at the edges of our system, and use it as an excuse to hold on to our money. We then turn a blind eye to the log of fraud that is at the core of our system, a fraud that must steal our money via taxation and use it to feed the poor anyway in order to maintain the authority to continue to perpetuate their crimes! Let’s just feed the poor ourselves! Let’s build systems that can tolerate the inevitable fraud that will happen when we actually interface with needy humans, but that cannot tolerate fraud with regard to the principles the systems was designed to operate upon and that don’t create a centralization of authority that is inevitably used to oppress us!

KEEP READING: The Value of a Lost Cause