“In a systematic political program to make people feel guilty, the Social Gospel movement within Protestantism has played an important role for over a century. Economist-historian Murray Rothbard in a 1986 essay, ’The Progressive Era and the Family”
described this development:
In many cases, leading progressive intellectuals at the turn of the twentieth century were former pietists who went to college and then transferred to the political arena, their zeal for making over mankind, as a “salvation by science.” And then the Social Gospel movement managed to combine political collectivism and pietist Christianity in the same package. All of these were strongly interwoven elements in the progressive movement.
The Social Gospel movement, which began in the United States in the 1880’s, shared an ethical principle with the Progressive movement, which began at the same time and in the same social circles. This ethical principle can be summarized as follows: Thou shalt not steal, except by majority vote.