The Protestant (or Puritan) Work Ethic, the Republican Party and Tea Party Movement, and Platitudes

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In Massachusetts, we know about hard work. Massachusetts was essentially founded on hark work. The hard work of the Puritans who came here from England to escape religious persecution. Some of their ideas, like their work ethic, has translated deeply into American culture. If you have read anything about American politics, you would have seen this idea floating in the background, or in the foreground, when the Tea Party movement became a reality.

What is the Protestant (or Purtian) Work Ethic?

As best can be stated, Merriam-Webster gives this definition as follows:

Value attached to hard work, thrift, and self-discipline under certain Protestant doctrines, particularly those of Calvinism. Max Weber, in The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism (1904–05), held that the Protestant ethic was an important factor in the economic success of Protestant groups in the early stages of European capitalism, in that worldly success came to be interpreted as a sign of the individual’s election to eternal salvation. Weber’s thesis was variously criticized and expanded throughout the 20th century.

Writer Dr. Gene Edward Keith of Ligonier Ministries gives more body to it here:

The Protestant work ethic promotes excellence. But what is the connection between Protestantism, work, and excellence? The pioneering sociologist Max Weber was the first to draw attention to the Protestant work ethic. In his book The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism, published in 1904, Weber studied the phenomenal economic growth, social mobility, and cultural change that accompanied the Reformation. He went so far as to credit the Reformation for the rise of capitalism.

Usually, he said, religion is otherworldly. But the Reformation doctrine of vocation taught that religion is to be lived out in this world. Weber did not completely understand the doctrine of vocation. He had the idea that the early Protestants worked so hard so as to build up evidence for their salvation. But the early Protestants knew better than anyone that their salvation had nothing to do with their works or their work, trusting in the grace of God through Christ alone.

Weber also assumed the early Protestants were ascetics. While their hard work inevitably made them lots of money, he said, their moral scruples prevented them from spending it, at least on worldly pleasures. So instead, they saved their money, put it in banks, and invested it. That is, they transformed their money into capital, thus creating capitalism. There may be something to this, but modern research has shown that the early reformers — despite the stereotype of “Puritans” — were not particularly ascetic, a quality that better describes the medieval Catholics they were reacting against.

But Weber is right to see the transforming power of the doctrine of vocation. Medieval Catholicism taught that spiritual perfection is to be found in celibacy, poverty, and the monastic withdrawal from the world, where higher spiritual life is found. But the reformers emphasized the spiritual dimension of family life, productive labor, and cultural engagement. “Vocation” is simply the Latinate word for “calling.” According to Luther, God calls each of us to various tasks and relationships. We have vocations in the family (marriage, parenthood), in the workplace (as master, servant, exercising our different talents in the way we make a living), and in the culture (as rulers, subjects, and citizens). We also have a vocation in the church (pastors, elders, organists, congregants), but the spiritual life is not to be lived out mainly in church and in church activities. Rather, when we come to church, we find the preaching of forgiveness for the sins we have committed in our vocations. Then, through Word and sacrament, our faith is strengthened. Our faith then bears fruit when we are sent back to our vocations in our families, our work, and our culture.

Luther stressed that vocation is not first about what we do. Rather, it is about what God does through us. God gives us this day our daily bread through the vocation of farmers, millers, bakers, and — we would add — the factory workers, truck drivers, grocery store employees, and the hands that prepared our meal. God creates and cares for new life by means of the vocations of mother and father, husband and wife. He protects us by means of police officers, judges, the military, and other Romans 13 vocations of those who “bear the sword.” God brings healing not primarily through miracles but through the vocation of doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and the other medical vocations. God teaches through teachers, conveys His Word through preachers, gives the blessings of technology through engineers, and creates beauty through artists. God works through all the people who do things for us, day by day. And He also works through us, in whatever tasks, offices, and relationships He has called us to do.

The doctrine of vocation charges our everyday lives and our mundane activities with spiritual significance, and it is indeed a powerful motivator to perform them with excellence. But there is another dimension to vocation, one that is often left out. Yes, we fulfill our callings to the glory of God. But how, exactly, do we glorify God? That is to say, how does God command us to glorify Him?

The medieval Catholics also spoke much of glorifying God. The Jesuits had as their motto: “to the greater glory of God.” The Inquisition burned Protestants at the stake for God’s glory.

A God-Centered Life

According to Leland Ryken’s “The Original Puritan Work Ethic” at Christian History.net:

The Puritans’ sense of priorities in life was one of their greatest strengths. Putting God first and valuing everything else in relation to God was a recurrent Puritan theme.

Baxter’s parting advice to his parishioners at Kidderminster was to “be sure to maintain a constant delight in God.” Preaching before the Houses of Parliament, Cornelius Burges admonished everyone present “to lift up his soul to take hold of God, to be glued and united to him, … to be only his forever.”

For the Puritans, the God-centered life meant making the quest for spiritual and moral holiness the great business of life. “In a divine commonwealth,” wrote Baxter, “holiness must have the principal honor and encouragement, and a great difference be made between the precious and the vile.” Our own culture has conspired to make such holiness seem burdensome, but the Puritans found it an appealing prospect. Ralph Venning, in a book-length treatise on sin, called holiness “the beauty of earth and Heaven, without which we cannot live well on earth, nor shall ever live in Heaven.”

Of course, it takes vigilance over one’s actions to produce a holy lifestyle. Very tellingly, the Puritans repeatedly used such words as watching, exact walking, and mortification to describe their preferred lifestyle.

In Puritan thinking, the Christian life was a heroic venture, requiring a full quota of energy. “Christianity is not a sedentary profession or employment,” wrote Baxter, adding, “Sitting still will lose you heaven, as well as if you run from it.” The Puritans were the activists of their day. In a letter to the Speaker of the House of Commons, Oliver Cromwell crossed out the words wait on and made his statement read “who have wrestled with God for a blessing.”

Stressing the God-centered life can lead to an otherworldly withdrawal from everyday earthly life. For the Puritans, it produced the opposite. Richard Sibbes sounded the keynote: “The life of a Christian is wondrously ruled in this world, by the consideration and meditation of the life of another world.” The doctrinal matrix that equipped the Puritans to integrate the two worlds was their thoroughly developed ideas on calling or vocation.

The Puritans spoke of two callings—a general calling and a particular calling. The general calling is the same for everyone and consists of a call to conversion and godliness. “The general calling,” wrote William Perkins, “is the calling of Christianity, which is common to all that live in the church of God. … [It] is that whereby a man is called out of the world to be a child of God.”

A particular calling consists of the specific tasks and occupations that God places before a person in the course of daily living. It focuses on, but is not limited to, the work that a person does for a livelihood. Several important corollaries follow from this doctrine of vocation.

Since God is the one who calls people to their work, the worker becomes a steward who serves God. Thomas Manton thus commented that “every creature is God’s servant, and hath his work to do wherein to glorify God; some in one calling, some in another.”

Secondly, the Puritan view that God calls all workers to their tasks in the world dignifies all legitimate kinds of work. Above all, the Puritan doctrine of vocation sanctifies common work. William Tyndale said that if we look externally “there is difference betwixt washing of dishes, and preaching of the word of God; but as touching to please God, none at all.” Baxter explained how this could be: “God looketh not … principally at the external part of the work, but much more to the heart of him that doth it.”

The Puritan doctrine of vocation (inherited, we should note, from Luther and later Continental Reformers) integrated life in the world with the spiritual life. The spiritual life was no longer limited to some “sacred” space, nor was it reserved for monks and nuns who had retired from the world. Instead, it is “in your shops” (said Richard Steele in his classic treatise The Tradesman’s Calling) “where you may most confidently expect the presence and blessing of God.”

This view of work as vocation offers more than simply the possibility of serving God in one’s daily work. It offers the possibility of serving God through or by means of that work. To work is to serve God. Baxter’s exhortation was for workers to “serve the Lord in serving their masters.”

There is a moral dimension to work as well. When the Puritans spoke of the rewards of work, they almost automatically paired serving God with serving humanity. “The main end of our lives,” wrote Perkins, “is to serve God in the serving of men in the works of our callings.”

If daily work is as central to the spiritual life as the Puritan doctrine of vocation asserts, it is no wonder that the Puritans threw themselves with such zest into their work. We need, of course, to draw a distinction between the original Puritan work ethic and the secularized perversion that followed. The original Puritan work ethic was this: “Be laborious and diligent in your callings … ; and if you cheerfully serve [God] in the labour of your hands, with a heavenly and obedient mind, it will be as acceptable to him as if you had spent all that time in more spiritual exercises” (Baxter).

An additional genius of the Puritans was the skill with which they managed to view all of life as God’s. The Puritans lived simultaneously in two worlds. For them, both worlds were equally real, and life was not divided into sacred and secular.

According to Thomas Gouge, Christians should “so spiritualize our hearts and affections that we may have heavenly hearts in earthly employments.” “If God be God over us,” wrote Peter Bulkeley, “he must be over us in every thing.”

It is no wonder, then, that the Puritans saw God in the commonplace. Richard Baxter asked his readers, “Canst not thou think on the several places thou hast lived in and remember that they have each had their several mercies?” John Bunyan asked in the preface to Grace Abounding, “Have you forgot … the milkhouse, the stable, the barn, and the like, where God did visit your soul?”

In such a framework, there are no “trivial” events, and all of life is potentially a teachable moment. One Sunday morning when the young Robert Blair had stayed home from church he looked out of the window to see “the sun brightly shining, and a cow with a full udder.” Blair remembered that the sun was made to give light and the cow to give milk, which made him realize how little he understood the purpose of his own life. Shortly thereafter, he was converted while listening to a sermon.

There was no place where the Puritans did not find God. They were always open to what Baxter called “a drop of glory” that God might allow to fall upon their souls.

C. S. Lewis wrote enthusiastically of “the beautiful, cheerful integration of [William] Tyndale’s world. He utterly denies the medieval distinction between religion and secular life.” Such integration is one of the most attractive features of the Puritans. Their goal was an ordered and disciplined daily life that integrated personal piety, corporate life, everyday work, and the worship of God.

I’ve made it clear what I feel about God and his existence. Illusionary. Fear inducing. Exploiting. We can do better, much better.

The Protestant Ethic Bad for Your Health?

This Reuters article gives more background concerned with this problematic idea:

The sociologist Max Weber fastened on this Protestant work ethic as the basis of Western civilization’s material success. As he saw it, capitalism was a by-product of the desire for grace. For the Protestants, hard work was not only a potential sign of personal salvation. It became a sign of national salvation.

The United States was particularly fertile ground for this. It was not only a Protestant nation, it took pride in being a classless society, a meritocracy — in which the secular elect would become just as important as the religious. The country’s governing principle was, and still is, that anyone can make it here if he or she is just willing to put in the necessary elbow grease.

This may be why no country seems to worship success as much as the United States. Our success is always perceived to be earned. This is American bedrock — our primary myth remains the social mobility of the Horatio Alger stories.

But if the work ethic was secularized and popularized, it was also politicized. If every individual was responsible for his or her own destiny — short of natural disasters, which some conservatives see as divine punishment for various cultural transgressions — there was no need for government interventions to redress inequalities.

In a world where everyone is on their own, help is not just wasteful; it is ungodly and un-American. If we are responsible for our success, we are also responsible for our failure.

The Puritan ethic has its good points, such as living simply, working hard, and being thrifty. But fundamentalists overlook the harms caused by the Puritan opposition to many forms of pleasure. The Puritans’ history supports the position, which is held by neuropsychologist James Prescott and others, that societies opposed to pleasure are likely to be violent.

The rabid anti-pleasure attitudes of the Puritans resulted from literal belief in the Bible. Jesus indicated that laughing in this life can cause eternal damnation of one’s soul. He said, “Woe unto you that laugh now! for ye shall mourn and weep.” (Luke 6:25) Christ also promoted a sorrowful attitude by promising salvation to those filled with gloom in this world: “Blessed are ye that weep now: for ye shall laugh.” (Luke 6:21)

That ascetic philosophy, which requires Christians to wait until a supposed afterlife before they can have fun, is seen throughout the New Testament. Galatians 5:21 says those engaging in “revellings” shall not inherit the kingdom of God. Ephesians 5:3-4 proscribes “jesting.” Titus 2:2 says men should be “sober” and “grave.” James 4:9 admonishes Christians: “Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep: let your laugher be turned to mourning and your joy to heaviness.”

Based on such biblical teachings, Puritans and other Christians often viewed laughter, happiness, and pleasure as suspect and undesirable. Making matters worse, they frequently tried to impose their doleful philosophy on others. As the nineteenth-century abolitionist and women’s-rights activist Wendell Phillips reportedly said: “The Puritan’s idea of hell is a place where everybody has to mind his own business.”

John Calvin is considered the founder of the Puritan ethic. The theocracy he established in sixteenth-century Geneva, Switzerland, prohibited dancing, drinking, gambling, card playing, ribaldry, fashionable clothes, and other amusements. Theaters were closed and attempts were made to drive taverns from the city.

Proclaiming “the chief duty of man is to glorify God,” Calvin required religious instruction for all, public fasting, austere living, and evening curfew. According to the town records, a man was imprisoned for three days for smiling during a baptism.

When the Puritans temporarily gained control in England, they banned entertainments, closed theaters, opposed festivals, and prescribed the death penalty for sex outside of marriage. Lord Macaulay said the Puritans “hated bear-baiting, not because it gave pain to the bear, but because it gave pleasure to the spectators.”

I suppose the Puritans thought it entertaining to see people tortured, with passive aggressions they exhibited. This Forbes article, by David DiSalvo expresses how too much work could get you in a coffin, or cremated, actually:

The study, published in the American Journal of Epidemiology, shows that a combination of stress, raised blood pressure and unhealthy diets stemming from long working hours may be the cause of thousands of workers’ serious health problems.

The study combined the results of different studies over the last 50 years and found that spending too long in the office resulted in a 40 to 80 percent greater chance of heart disease compared to an eight hour work day.

The latest findings discovered by scientists at the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health support results from a 2011 British survey that revealed that doing more than 11 hours of work a day raised heart disease risks by 67 percent.

Lead researcher Dr. Marianna Virtanen and her team gathered data from 12 different studies going back to 1958, when researchers first suggested that working long hours could be linked to poor heart health. In total, the studies involved more than 22,000 participants, from Britain, the USA, Japan, Sweden, Finland, Denmark and the Netherlands.

“There are several potential mechanisms that may underlie the association between long working hours and heart disease,” study authors wrote. ”One is prolonged exposure to psychological stress.”

Researchers said that other factors could be increased levels of the stress hormone cortisol, poor eating habits and lack of physical activity due to limited leisure time.

This WorkSmart article, “Can working too hard cause health problems?” explains the following:

It can and it does. First of all, there’s stress. Working too long or too hard or without having enough going on in your life to counterbalance work can create extremely high stress levels. And that can undermine your health in all sorts of ways.

Study after study has shown that prolonged stress has a negative impact on health. Stress is implicated in everything from high blood pressure to infertility. Indigestion, allergies, migraine, diabetes, ulcers, skin disorders and depression are just some of the conditions that have been linked to stress.

Letting work dominate your life also means you’re probably not getting enough exercise, or any at all. Exercise keeps your body healthy and helps you to deal with stress. It may also mean you’re not getting enough sleep, or that your sleep is disturbed. Proper sleep is essential to good health.

If you’re working too hard there’s also a good chance that you’re ignoring your diet. Grabbing something from the office canteen, downing endless cups of coffee to keep going and then heating up a pre-prepared meal at night because you haven’t the energy or time to make anything better is a fast road to poor health.

Then there are health problems related to the way you work. Whether you’re operating a drill or working at a computer screen, you need proper breaks and time to give your body a chance to recover from spending long periods in fixed positions. Overwork often means not taking enough breaks and spending too much time in the one position, and that can cause long-term problems including RSI , back injury and eye strain.

Finally, this Pick Your Brain article, “Why Too Much Hard Work May Hinder Your Success” brings it all home:

You probably have been told things like: “if you want to succeed, you have to work very hard”, “only those who work really hard will make it in life”…

But, is this really true?

Of course, if you work really hard, there is a chance that will make a nice living. But is this really what you want, suffering, pushing and struggling for many years, maybe even for decades to make some money and to be seen as someone who “made it” by your peers?

Yes, if you want to get from LA to New York you can walk – that’s the hard way. But, you could also take the plane and have a much more enjoyable experience.

Hard is synonymous with pushing, forcing and struggling. And, in that state of mind, it is impossible to connect with your inner genius, to get into the flow and to create truly outstanding results.

Hard work also means, there won’t be much joy, excitement and happiness for the next 3, 5, maybe 10 years until you reach your goal. And even then you have no guarantee that all your hard work will lead to success and happiness.

You know, the world is full of very hard working people who remain poor, broke and unhappy, no matter how many hours they put in.

The solution is to follow your passion and to do something you truly love.

Don’t get me wrong, if you want to achieve extraordinary results, you will need to take massive action. You will have 10, 12, 14… hour days.

But, the huge difference will be your state of mind. If you follow your TRUE passion (and not just an idea that sounds exciting for whatever reason), there will be momentum, there will be excitement, there will be a flow of ideas, there will be inspiration…

And you will be eager and excited to take action. The energy of your passion will pull you forward, it will be easy to get out of bed in the morning, time will be flying, you will get into the flow easily, you won’t even have the impression you are working…

Just feel the energy for a moment – there is joy, excitement, love, passion… extraordinary results can only be born out of such a state of mind.

The Punitive Politics of the Puritan Ethic

This AltNet article, “Punitive politics: Blame the Puritans,” by Neil Gabler, combines the above with the political views of the conservative movements ideas and the Tea Party’s key agenda:

When U.S. conservatives cut unemployment benefits, it is because giving the unemployed money allegedly discourages them from working. When they cut food stamps, it is because they claim recipients are gaming the system, though there is virtually no evidence to support this. Representative Jack Kingston (R-Ga.), a Senate candidate, proposed last week that any child receiving lunches through the federal school lunch program be required to work to earn the food.

But Republicans wouldn’t be proposing these hardships if there weren’t a sizable contingent of Americans supporting them. Presumably on the basis that the disadvantaged aren’t really disadvantaged. They are unworthy.

Slashing benefits is only cruel if you are hurting the deserving. But in the conservatives’ view, the poor are never deserving. So you can hack away with a sense of righteousness. Poverty, they insist, is a choice.

This may help explain the conservatives’ anger at anyone who purports to help the poor. Doing so violates the sense of justice for many on the right. It isn’t just that conservatives hate government for taking taxpayers’ hard-earned dollars. They hate it because it rewards indolence — where politics conjoins with sinfulness.

This has a powerful appeal. And it goes a long way toward answering the liberal quandary of why so many Americans who could benefit from government programs oppose them and work against their own self-interest.

The answer goes back to those Puritan roots. We are a nation of scolds and scourges. We hate the idea that someone can get something he or she didn’t earn. So what’s the matter with Kansas may just be that many Americans believe in something more important than self-interest, more important than compassion. Punishment.

Many Americans, certainly many Republicans, are more interested in making sure that the “undeserving” are not being rewarded than making sure the deserving are rewarded.

Sure it is punitive. Meting out punishment, however, is something we love to do. Which is why one of our major political parties can subsist on it. The Republican Party is the punishment party.

This AltNet Labor article, “Why the Protestant Work Ethic Is a Menace to Society,” by Robert S. Becker, explains the effects of these punitive measures and suggests that things need to change:

What needs challenge isn’t work per se but the Protestant work credo and noxious linkages: 1) that worldly success signals heavenly election; 2) that will power alone (and the right Christian values) will overcome all uneven playing fields; and 3) that status (read: money) awards “winners” like Bishop Romney the moral right to rule the entire roost. In fact, hard work by itself leads to exhaustion, without often gaining a livable wage. And America’s celebrated draw of exceptional socio-economic mobility has migrated to Canada and much of Europe and Asia.

Diligence alone isn’t enough: Greeks average 2,017 work hours annually, the highest in Europe, with a two-week vacation. Germans put in 1,408 hours per year, with twice the vacation time, yet Greece is a wreck (20% jobless) while Germany a powerhouse. In fact, our New Deal’s 40-hour week base cut America’s average workload by 25% (from 1900 and 1950), yet that didn’t stop us from becoming the world’s richest economic power ever (not getting devastated by two wars helped).

By the way, the U.S. happens to be the only major western industrial nation that doesn’t mandate vacation time. Not only that, Time magazine reports: “The average American worker earns 14 days off per year, but only takes 12 of them, according to a 2011 survey by Expedia. About a quarter of Americans don’t have any vacation time at all.” Many beg off earned “free time” for fear of losing pay or their jobs plus dread the undone workload if they recreate.

In fact, leisure advances productivity, per the Atlantic, as the Harvard Business Review”showed that requiring business consultants to take time off every week actually boosted their productivity.” Likewise, the Journal of Epidemiology found that “fluid intelligence,” aligned with “problem solving, short-term memory, and creativity” was higher when working less than 40 hours vs. those slaving at 55 hour weeks. In short, overwork cuts efficiency while amplifying stress and health problems, impedes exercise and ups our reliance on coping mechanisms, namely alcohol, cigarettes, and drugs. Obsessive work can turn one’s life into an earthly hell — redeemed perhaps only if (Christian) suffering is the gateway to heaven.

Our Founders endorsed “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness,” not life, liberty and the pursuit of obsession. Work-related maladies (worsened by low-nutrition fast food and insufficient sleep) undermine the “life” and spirit of millions, thus our low national happiness rankings. Gallup polls spanning 2005-2011 discovered nations that work less and play more are happier, namely Denmark, Finland, Norway, and the Netherlands. Instead, we boast about the “liberty” to work ourselves into an early grave.

The Protestant Ethic as a Platitude

You have probably heard it before, a platitude someone gave you to appearing like a small crumb, when your original intent was to receive a hearty meal with all the trimmings. Most of us have, and felt like we were cheated in the process. According to the blog, Award-Winning Blather*, their definition is:

A platitude is a statement that’s used so often, it sounds dull or trite instead of interesting, thoughtful or helpful. When someone is coping with a life problem, a platitude is the typical reaction of another person who has nothing genuinely heartfelt or sympathetic to say. It helps fill the silence in an uncomfortable conversation, and can be an indirect way of letting people know they should look elsewhere for meaningful dialog.

Indeed, “work hard and you will get far” is just a sort of platitude, with attitude. Here are some more to wet your sadomasochist appetite:

Things would be better if you were more positive.

If you knew what I knew, you’d think differently.

No matter what you do, it’s always something.

You’ll be back in the game before you know it.

Life doesn’t give you things you can’t handle.

We all have to do things we don’t want to do.

You’re making a mountain out of a molehill.

You don’t need people like that in your life.

The best revenge is to have a fulfilling life.

What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.

If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.

You just haven’t met the right person yet.

There’s somebody out there for everyone.

If life gives you lemons, make lemonade.

Good things happen to those who wait.

Other people go through this every day.

You have your whole life ahead of you.

There is someone worse off than you.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to…

You can be anything you want to be.

One day you’ll see things differently.

I understand this is difficult for you.

You’re paddling against the current.

Your negativity is your only hurdle.

You just need to believe in yourself.

They weren’t right for you anyway.

The only thing to fear is fear itself.

Maybe your heart just isn’t in to it.

You have to know you limitations.

You just have to try a little harder.

Everything happens for a reason.

You’ll thank me for this one day.

No good deed goes unpunished.

It will all be worth it in the end.

There’s plenty of fish in the sea.

You gotta do what you gotta do.

This is just a bump in the road.

You’re better off without them.

God only takes the good ones.

Everything’s going to be OK.

In case you missed it, “If you don’t succeed, try, try again”….. “You just have to try a little harder.” I suppose the thank you being issued will occur in heaven, when you are dead as a doornail, and never getting back up again. Get what I am saying?

Richard Baxter’s Do’s and Don’ts in the Workplace

• Choose that employment or calling … in which you may be most serviceable to God. Choose not that in which you may be most rich or honourable in the world.

• Be diligent in your callings, and spend no time in idleness, and perform your labours with holy minds, to the glory of God, and in obedience to his commands.

• Idleness is a robbing God, who is the Lord of us and all our faculties.

• Take pleasure in your work, and then you will not be slothful in it.

• This interest of God in your lowest, and hardest, and servilist labour, doth make it honourable and should make it sweet.

• The question is, How they use that which they labour so hard for, and save so sparingly. If they use it for God, and charitable uses, there is no man taketh a righter course.

• Remember that riches do make it much harder for a man to be saved.

• If God show you a way in which you may lawfully get more than in another way (without wrong to your soul, or to any other), if you refuse this, and then choose the less gainful way, you cross one of the ends of your calling, and you refuse to be God’s steward.

• You must not desire nor seek to get another’s goods or labour for less than it is worth.

• You have far more cause to be afraid of prosperity, than of adversity; of riches, than of poverty.

• The devil suiteth his temptations to men’s daily work and business.

Closing

In closing, I will quote an Tea Party Activist pleased by the Tea Party victory of Fred Gruber over Linwood Cobb:

 “You’ve proved that hard work and dedication CAN win the day.”

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2 thoughts on “The Protestant (or Puritan) Work Ethic, the Republican Party and Tea Party Movement, and Platitudes

  1. Pingback: “I’m Jewish!” | The Progressive Democrat

  2. Pingback: What is Charity? | The Progressive Democrat

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