A Shekel and a Pair of Shoes

Amos 8:4-6

Hear this, you who trample on the needy
    and bring the poor of the land to an end,
saying, “When will the new moon be over,
    that we may sell grain?
And the Sabbath,
    that we may offer wheat for sale,
that we may make the ephah small and the shekel great
    and deal deceitfully with false balances,
that we may buy the poor for silver
    and the needy for a pair of sandals
    and sell the chaff of the wheat?”

Many will read these verses and assume that they are in reference to corrupt corporations looking to make a buck by oppressing the poor.  It sounds like that when you only read verses 4 and 5.  But when you read verse 6 you realize who Amos is really referring to in these verses.

…that we may buy the poor for silver
    and the needy for a pair of sandals…

Amos isn’t saying ”they” will a pay a sum to the poor and needy to relieve them of their poverty and meager existence.  No, by saying “the needy for a pair of sandals”, Amos is telling us that “they” will give them just enough to keep them poor and needy.  “They” will give them just enough to keep the poor and needy indebted to them for keeping them alive.

So, who are “they”?

It’s the government, the creators of the welfare state.  They buy the poor with silver.  They sell the idea of victimhood and no responsibility, and they, the government, prop themselves up as the great saviors of the poor.  All the while, giving them just enough to survive and removing all incentive for improvement.  Improvement would mean breaking the cycle of poverty and breaking their dependency on these great saviors of society.  “They” can’t have that.

If we backup, you can see the inference in verse 5:

…that we may make the ephah small and the shekel great…

The ephah was a dry measurement, comparable to a bushel.  The shekel was the basic unit of currency like the dollar.  What this verse is saying is we will give them little, but make it appear as much.  This is what the government does, especially around election time, which nowadays is pretty much 365 days a year.

Every day the leaders are not leading.  Oh, they tell you they are, but in reality all they are doing is working towards getting re-elected.  So they tout up the benefits they will give to you and me, things we will never see.  They are great in talk and little in action.  They set the bar low and keep it low.  They buy the poor with silver, very little silver and a pair of shoes.  For in the scheme of things, that’s all we get when you compare it to how they fill their pockets during a life long career of “leading”.

Do they “deal deceitfully with false balances”?  Do I even have to address that.  They use and manipulate words, numbers and people.  Those are their false balances.

And do not be fooled by the evil corporation and capitalist rhetoric that is spewed about.  Do not be bought by the victimhood of being preyed upon by business.

Do you realize that the annual revenues for the United States federal government far exceeds that of any large, multinational, evil and selfish corporation?  The guesstimated annual revenue for the 2019 fiscal year for the US government is $3.422 trillion.  The guesstimated revenue for all governments in the US, federal, state and local is $6.54 trillion.

Now compare that to the largest evil corporation’s revenue, which was Walmart.  Their total revenue for 2017 was $485.9 billion dollars.  That is only fourteen percent of what the US federal government takes in annually and a mere seven percent of all governments in the United States.

Government is the largest of large corporations in the United States, and the most corrupt.  They pull in trillions of dollars each year and still manage to be trillions of dollars in debt.

And so they buy the poor with silver, just a few shekels, and the needy with just a pair of shoes.  They give them enough to keep us all indebted to them. They are the company store.

…and they sell the chaff as wheat…

They sell us bullshit every day.

© Otis P Smith and About the Groove, 2019. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Otis P Smith and About the Groove with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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