Monday, May 29, 2017

Reading Mark Mendiola's Article, Is Time Running Out for the U.S. Economy? (2000)

The fifth issue of LCG's recruitment magazine, Tomorrow's World (March-April 2000), featured an article by Mark Mendiola entitled "Is Time Running Out for the US Economy?" (pp. 24-28.) This was the fifth of several articles Mendiola would write for this recruitment magazine. Here he scare mongers about the US economy being destined to somehow go through "the most ignominious economic collapse ever experienced in 6,000 years of history." Seventeen years later his dire prediction is still unfulfilled.

Mendiola starts by stating that the United States had never been as prosperous as it was then in early 2000.
Some historians say the affluence enjoyed by Americans, and others in the western world, is unprecedented. Never have so many enjoyed so much for so long! Yet, are there indications the remarkable growth could come to an abrupt end?
At this time Mendiola belonged to an organization, LCG, which taught that the United States is destined to soon be conquered by a European Empire led by Germany as divine punishment for behaving contrary to LCG's God's will. LCG and their predecessors stemming from HWA have continuously made dire predictions of this sort since the 1930s and yet this catastrophe simply never happens.
In November 1999, President Clinton signed a bill that dismantles the financial safeguards installed in the 1930s to prevent a recurrence of the 1929 market crash. The new bill, in effect, repeals the Glass-Steagall Act, which had erected “firewalls” to separate banks, investment firms and insurance companies, prohibiting them from engaging in each other’s businesses.
Following the financial crash of 2007-8 this act of legislation was often cited as one of the factors which made that financial crash possible. However it is clear from the context of this article that Mendiola was implying that this would lead to the Great Tribulation not just another market collapse. Yet seventeen years after this article was published and nine years after the fall of Lehman Brothers the United States is still by far the most powerful nation state on the face of the Earth and the prospect of Germany conquering the United States remains as absurdly remote as ever.
Yes, those trusting in this world’s financial system for their economic security could be in for a very rude awakening if they find their savings and investments shattered overnight in another crash. 
Here we see Mendiola making his readers fearful and scared. Such fears can be used to grab the attention of the readers and make them listen. Many readers of this recruitment magazine will have no idea of the many flaws in what this organization teaches.

Mendiola then scare mongers about the federal debt failing to understand that it is public debt, not private debt.
While Congress and the White House have trumpeted the first balanced U.S. federal budget in decades, little has been said of the fact the national debt, or the accumulation of annual budget deficits, stands at about $5.76 trillion and continues to grow at the rate of $211 million a day! Each U.S. citizen’s share of this debt is about $21,000. Despite the strong economy, the number of Americans filing personal bankruptcies in 1998 also reached a record 1.4 million; up more than 300 percent since 1980. 
Unlike the private debt that so many of us have the US federal government can simply print more money legally. At present it is not possible for the United States to go bankrupt. Furthermore even today the United States was more in debt per capita back in the 1940s because of World War II. Also about half of the federal debt is owned to Americans, not foreigners. Mendiola is sorely mistaken in using the federal debt to make his readers think that economic catastrophe is about to happen.

Also noteworthy is the way the public federal debt is placed right next to a discussion of bankruptcies. This shows he has a flawed understanding of these matters to link the tow topics so closely together. Public debt is not the same as private debt.

After that Mendiola moans that his message of impending catastrophe is not popular.
The Apostle Paul said that covetousness is idolatry.... He also warned that the last days would be perilous, and men would be lovers of themselves, lovers of money and lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God.... It is not popular to warn of punishment coming on our people, who think they can blatantly break God’s spiritual and economic laws without paying the consequences. Yet, a day of reckoning looms.
Since the 1930s HWA and his various imitators including those in LCG have made dire predictions that the United States will soon be conquered by a menacing, European power. Nowadays many people who may become interested in joining LCG can simply look them up on te Internet and access critical information about HWA and what he taught. Many will simply realize that HWA or any of the splinter groups stemming from him are not worth joining not least because of the countless failed predictions that they have made over the years.

Also while preaching of catastrophe is not as popular as Mendiola would like in actual fact there is a market for this kind of talk. LCG and the Armstrongite organizations live off of inciting and providing (terribly flawed) solutions to fears of the end of the world.

Mendiola insists times of desperation even worse than the Great Depression is fated to happen. He also calls the United States "spoiled."
Tough economic times— even worse than the Great Depression of the 1930s—are looming for American and British peoples living in spoiled nations accustomed to soft, luxurious lifestyles.
Mendiola shrilly insists that the United States is just like the Titanic before it sank.
Bible prophecy plainly shows there is going to be a recurrence of such disaster on a national scale. The American and British peoples are steaming full speed ahead to their own rendezvous with catastrophe!
Seventeen years later his dire catastrophe has still not occurred.

Mendiola then criticize Americans for trusting in themselves to create wealth. Well how else are people supposed to get anything done without believing that they can do it?
U.S. currency is stamped with the motto “In God We Trust.” Yes, in God we should trust, but most Americans and Britons are trusting in their own abilities to create wealth!
In God We Trust has appeared on US coins since 1864 and was adopted as the national motto in 1956. The phrase stems from a line of the fourth verse of The Star Spangled Banner.

Mendiola ends his article shrilly insisting that America will soon go through "the most ignominious economic collapse ever experienced in 6,000 years of history." LCG teaches that the United States is fated to be conquered by a European Empire led by Germany with "Israelites" (white Americans) being killed off and the remaining survived taken captive as slaves.
Unless our peoples repent as a nation and reverse course, they are doomed to suffer the most ignominious economic collapse ever experienced in 6,000 years of history. God help our nation to repent and turn to Him wholeheartedly before the rapidly inflating bubble bursts!
Clearly Mendiola was not talking about the collapse of the Nasdaq in 2000 or the crash of 2007-8. He was alluding to the supposedly inevitable collapse and conquest of the United States. And yet seventeen years later this "most ignominious economic collapse ever experienced in 6,000 years of history" has simply not happened. Mendiola's words have failed miserably. There is no need to fear LCG's dire proclamations.

In September 2006 Mendiola left LCG and joined Dave Pack's Restored Church of God. Around 2008 he left RCG and joined Don Billingsley's Church of God-Faithful Flock.

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