Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The Awakening


I found this on the internet today and I had to post it...that's how things happen right?

One little drop here--a drop there. Pretty soon there is a flood.

And right now, I believe America is in need of that flood.




redink

http://www.giussani.com/articles_politics/articlespict/george-and-laura-bush_15sept04.jpg

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Religious Intolerance


This article from the Christian Science Monitor explains how the U.N. is making another effort to rip our already tenuous and rapidly disappearing liberty away from us:

"Islamic countries push a global 'blasphemy' law"
http://news.yahoo.com/s/csm/20091027/ts_csm/edefamation

According to the article, the 57-nation OIC (Organization of the Islamic Council), under the leadership of Pakistan, intends to take the non-binding resolutions to limit offensive religious speech, and turn them into a legally binding treaty.

This means that every government that signs on to the treaty would have to prosecute every incident of religious "hate speech" that was reported.

Tell me where the slippery slope will end?
What if a Christian, Hindu or Jew disagreed with Sharia Law?

Suprisingly, Hillary Clinton, came out for freedom of religion and freedom of speech.

"Some claim that the best way to protect the freedom of religion is to implement so-called antidefamation policies that would restrict freedom of expression and the freedom of religion. I strongly disagree," said Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton this week.
She went on to argue that the best antidote to religious intolerance is enforcement of antidiscrimination laws, government "outreach" to minority religious groups, and "the vigorous defense of both freedom of religion and expression".

Though I'm too conservative to agree with "government outreach"...whatever that may be, I applaud the former first lady and current Secretary of State for making this statement.

I'm also too much of an optimist to believe America would agree to sign such a treaty, though I think President "57-states" Obama would sign (it's just my opinion, but what I've seen so far in the presidency makes me believe this with every fiber of my being).
However our Constitution says the majority of congress must also sign international treaties for them to become the law of the land.
That means Americans would really have to love this treaty...and I don't think we will.
And if congress tries to sell it to the public, they would only wind up looking foolish.

No, I really don't think this attempt to squelch religious freedom will gain much traction.
And now we know it's out there; now we know who wants it and who is the most religiously intolerant.
...but do we know why?
There will always be something or someone in this world who wants control, and of course they will either take it by force, by law, or with persuasion that our loss of liberty is in our best interest.

So, as a red-blooded Conservative, I'm passing on my humble opinion that in here in America, we need to be aware of the fragility of true freedom. It is certainly not free and bears constant vigiliance.
Freedom is messy and imperfect...but beautiful and filled with hope.
I'll fight for it.

redink

http://img2.allposters.com/images/LPIPOD/lpi13645_5-FB.jpg

Monday, October 5, 2009

The Bad Luck of the Irish

I'm part Irish...who isn't?
There might be a few Americans out there who haven't a drizzle of Irish fairy dust on them, but it doesn't matter.
Share a beer with an Irishman and he'll find you some Irish in you...if he has to go back to Adam and Eve and claim the Garden of Eden originated in the County of Cork...er, West Cork...and don't you be forgettin'.
Maybe that sort of happy embrace into Irish arms explains this:

(from "The Great Irish Surrender" by Nile Gardiner)
"The Irish ratification of the Treaty of Lisbon will pave the way for the biggest erosion of national sovereignty in Europe since the Second World War."

Ireland has finally caved to European Union pressure and signed the Lisbon Treaty.
The significance of this is the gradual eroding of Ireland's national sovereignity.
Even if none of us were Irish, we are all American enough to appreciate what happens when you centralize a government.

This is what the Lisbon Treaty is:
(FTA)
"It is in essence a blueprint for a European superstate, paving the way for the creation of a European Union president, foreign minister, foreign service, and diplomatic corps."

Europe is not a United States and never will be.
So for the European Union to contrive a superstate out of a compilation of such diverse countries spells disaster for individual culture, economic freedom or any other liberty.

The Lisbon Treaty will centralize all political power into one entity and remove all decision making from each nation-state as to what is in their own best interest.
All for one..?


(FTA)
"The Treaty is all about building a vast supranational political entity that will increasingly challenge and oppose American leadership on the world stage. It is inherently undemocratic, and it will ultimately strip away the ability of individual nation-states within Europe to shape their own destinies."

At the moment, Eastern Europe is still holding out, but they don't have the clout or the military might to keep a united Europe at bay. If in the end, if England signs the treaty, than they too, will be absorbed with little or no say in the matter.
...but all is not as bleak as it looks.

(FTA)
"If Great Britain does derail the European train as it advances toward “ever closer union,” she will have struck a huge blow for the cause of liberty, freedom, sovereignty, and democracy in Europe."

The British are struggling under the liberal policies of Gordon Brown and their Consevative Party is beginning to make some headway.
It's very possible that with a change in leadership, England will pave the way for the rest of Europe to tell those "wankers" in the EU to stuff their "dodgy" treaty in the fat "gobs" and put an end to their power grab.
(Who would want to see such cultural excellence end up like Prussia?)

Oh!
...did I mention I was also part English?


redink

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Hi. My name is America.

Hi everyone. I'm America.

(Hello, America. Welcome to Al Anon.)

Thank you for letting me share.

First I just want to say, that I never thought I'd find myself in this position--reaching out for help like this. But I'm suffering right now and have no where else to turn.
When I first met my husband, I had no idea things would turn out this way.

I met him in the Church of Communism...a friend talked me in to going one day, just to broaden my horizons, he said.

I didn't really want to. I'd always heard the Church of Communism hated people like me, but the day that I went, I met this man...I know we have to keep things anonymous here, so I'll just refer to him as "Mr. O"...
Well, Mr. O immediately came up to me, welcomed me warmly and told me how much I needed someone like him in my life.

It felt kind of nice to be wanted so badly. I'd been through a lot these last few years, and I was a little insecure. Mr. O was so full of charisma and smiles and he kept telling me to have hope, that he could change all that had gone wrong in my life.

Little did I realize what he meant by hope and change.

We were married last November and he took charge right away.

At first it felt good to have someone be so completely involved in my life, but I began notice some things that started to give me second thoughts right after the wedding.

I had gotten into debt...not too terribly, mind you and I was working hard to pay it off.
I still had a nest egg for retirement, I still had a job, I still owned my own home, I was always a pretty independent person.
But my new husband decided to take my nest egg and give it to the people in my neighborhood who were losing their homes.
Mr. O insisted the money would stabilize the neighborhood, providing greater protections for me and my kids.

I believed him.
But it didn't work out like he said.

Everyone took the money...some of them weren't even from my neighborhood!
And then they left their homes anyway.
It went down hill from there.

Mr. O told me to give him my paycheck so he could spread it around, then everyone would love me and become more productive.
I tried to tell him I was struggling as it was and barely had enough for my own kids.
I didn't understand how anyone could become productive by just giving them someone else's money.
But he told me I should be ashamed for only thinking about what I wanted.
He told me I had the chance to make a great moral statement about myself and show the world what it really means to be generous.
I couldn't help it, friends...Mr. O has such a way with words.
I gave him my paycheck.

But he turned around and gave most of it to a bunch of crooks who made off with the money, never to be seen or heard from again.
Then he gave the rest to a street gang from the worst side of town and they used my money to recruit more people to stir up trouble so I wouldn't go asking for my money back!

I started to get angry, but he called me childish and said I wasn't giving him a chance to change things around.
That I wanted a quick fix for the things I messed up before I met him and it wasn't going to be easy.
I had to learn how to sacrifice for the good of others.
It all sounded so familiar...I didn't realize at the time that I'd heard these very words in the church I had met him in.

Then Mr. O told me to give up my car because it was polluting the environment and wasting resources.
I did as he asked and lost my job when I couldn't get to work.
He also made me turn off the heater right in the middle of winter! He told me I should get some extra blankets, but I had no money to get any.
Mr. O went out with his friends all the time, flying around the world, enjoying five star hotels and restaurants, while I stayed home with the kids trying to keep warm and fed.
I went into denial. I didn't want to admit what was right in front of my eyes.
...that Mr. O is a Communist.
He is throwing my money away and destroying my freedom.
He is telling me I have no right to defend myself and that I am no better than anyone else in the world.
And still I stayed with him, defending him to my friends and neighbors who became concerned that I would lose everything.

But if losing my job and all my money wasn't enough, Mr. O had to go around insulting my friends.
They were the only ones there for me when I got attacked a few years ago by a another street gang. They didn't usually come to my neighborhood, but somehow they snuck in and beat me to a pulp!
I survived only because I was strong at the time.
I was still independent and surrounded by friends who saw this gang as a threat and helped me fight them back to their own street corner.
But now my husband has alienated all my friends, ignoring them, making fun of them.
Not only that, but he took away our guard dogs...even the ones I had already given to my friends.
He put those dogs in the pound where they are wasting away...and he muzzled the rest so they are sitting ducks in case the gangs come back to harm us.

To make matters worse, Mr. O actually went to visit the gang that hurt me and apologized for my behavior and that of my friends.
Now I feel like it's my fault this gang attacked me!
Can you believe it?! I feel so betrayed.

I know...I know, this is classic co-dependency, right?
And we all know that being co-dependent means always having to say you're sorry.

I have such regret now.
I've been married to Mr. O for less than a year, but I don't know if I'll survive till the end of this marriage.
He's so controlling, but persuasive at the same time.
He still has charisma, but the rest of my friends are starting to see how battered and ashamed I look and they're questioning whether this marriage is worth saving.

I have to do every thing he says all the time. He doesn't allow me to disagree with anything he says.
I've tried reasoning with him, compromising with him and even shouting till I'm blue in the face. But it's always his way or the highway.
He belittles me all the time and tells me I don't know what I want...as if I were a child!

I'm 233 years old, for cryin' out loud!

I fought a war to become my own person, fought another with myself to root out a terrible sin in my life, fought two world wars to help my friends and keep us all from becoming slaves, tried to fight two other wars, but my husbands then were not in the mood to win, so I took a beating.
I guess at some point, I lost my nerve and felt too much like a victim.
I wanted everyone to like me so much, that I gave up my freedom and who I really am to please my husband.

Mr. O made such promises and I believed everyone of them.
But now...I'm here, trying to cope with what I've become.
Realizing that all his words were just fancy dressing covering up his own ego.
When did this relationship become so abusive?

I realize too late, that my husband never really liked me...he was taught in the Church of Communism after all.
Hello?? I guess that should have been my first clue.

And he didn't want any children...he had a record of counseling women in the church to abort their babies. But at the time, I really believed he was helping them like he said.
Now I know he didn't care about them, he just wanted to be the one who made decisions about life and death.
I guess Mr. O thinks he's kinda like God that way.

And everything is always about him...never about me, or what's good for me.
He gets to buy whatever he wants and go out whenever he feels like it.
But I have to stay home and work my fingers to the bone, I've even spent a weekend on the street corner trying to panhandle....so much for independence.

I don't feel like celebrating holidays anymore. Mr. O keeps turning them into a party for himself.
I can't call up my friends and hang out with them, because Mr. O doesn't make them feel welcome anymore.
I'm afraid to travel, even if I could afford to. That street gang is just waiting for me to step into their territory.
I don't have a future, and Mr. O won't let me talk about the past unless I admit I screwed my life up before I met him, and now he's here to fix it all.

Lots of people think he's a wonderful man still, but they don't really know what he's like at home.
He pastes on his smile for the world, but at home he is trying to put me in a box.
I want out now.
I want a divorce.

So I came to Al Anon today to get my thinking straight.
I know you have a saying called stinkin' thinkin' and I believe I fit the bill.

But I need to take the first step...right?

I know the first step is to admit I'm powerless over Communism and that my life has become unmanageable.
...I tried so hard to make myself believe it could work this time. I know now, it was all an illusion.

Step two is to realize that a power greater than myself can restore me to sanity.
...I used to think that power was Mr. O. But he's definitely not restoring my sanity. So I better take a closer look at who's really in charge.

The third step is to turn over my will to the care of God.
...Ah! I thought it was someone other than Mr. O. Now things are starting to make sense.

The fourth step is to make a searching an fearless moral inventory of myself.
...wow! that's a hard one, but I can't get away from men like Mr. O if I don't.

The fifth step is admit to God, myself and others the exact nature of my wrongs.
...see, I always thought Mr. O knew all my wrongs and was trying to right them...when in fact he'd gotten my wrongs--wrong! The only thing I did wrong was hand over my liberty to such a man. He won't even let me think for myself anymore.

The sixth step is make myself entirely ready for God to remove this defect in my character.
...this is going to take a lot more humility than I thought. But really, what do I have to lose now? Mr. O has already humiliated me more than anyone else could ever do...including myself.

The seventh-ninth steps are to make a list of persons I have harmed and make amends when and where I can.
...I'm sooo, sorry Eastern Europe! I'll get those missle defense shields up and running as soon as I unload this worthless husband. I'm sorry, also, Israel. Of course you have the right to defend yourself! Just because Mr. O is a kiss-butt to your enemies doesn't mean I go along with it. Hey! If you need a hand...I'm still here. My hands are just kinda tied right now. And the rest of my old friends...don't worry. Just ride this out with me for a few more years. I'm working on real change.

The tenth step is to continue to take a personal inventory and when I'm wrong, promptly admit it.
...I'm going to keep a closer eye on things now. There's just too much at stake not to anymore.

The eleventh step is basically a recap of the the first three
...go to God with the big stuff and pray for guidance. He's the one really in charge after all.

The twelfth step is for me to share as I am doing today, a lesson learned the hard way. And to give my encouragement to others that all is not lost.
...Mr. O is doing me a lot of damage, yes, but having admitted I had a problem is giving me enough detachment to do something about it.

And realizing that God is bigger than Mr. O's mistakes, gives me just the hope I need.
Thank you for letting me share today.

(Thank you for sharing, America.)

Let us end our meeting with the Serenity Prayer:
"God, grant us the serenity
To accept the things we cannot change,
Courage to change the things we can,
And the wisdom to know the difference."

Keep coming back...it works if you work it!.

redink

http://www.choices-nyc.com/images/product/s_Books_Paths_to_Recovery_28.jpg

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

God Bless Amerika

These are the lyrics of a song taught to schoolchildren at the B. Bernice Young Elementary School in New Jersey.

Mmm, mmm, mm!

Barack Hussein Obama
He said that all must lend a hand [?]
To make this country strong again
Mmm, mmm, mm!

Barack Hussein Obama
He said we must be clear today
Equal work means equal pay
Mmm, mmm, mm!

Barack Hussein Obama
He said that we must take a stand
To make sure everyone gets a chance
Mmm, mmm, mm!

Barack Hussein Obama
He said Red, Yellow, Black or White
All are equal in his sight
Mmm, mmm, mm!

Barack Hussein Obama
Yes
Mmm, mmm, mm!

Barack Hussein Obama


(UPDATE: youtube video no longer available)


I just wanted to know if anyone...anyone at all is disturbed by this?

And no...I do not think this speaks to the downfall of America, despite the title of the post.
It just makes me think and wonder on the changes we're willing to accept when
our schools deliberately teach children to praise the President with words usually reserved for Jesus Christ.


redink

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Logic and Lying

I'm going to ask your indulgence as I once again use C. S. Lewis' marvelous story to illustrate something about the recent flap over Rep. Joe Wilson's shout-out during the President's speech on health care reform.
From "The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe".

Lucy Pevensie has just discovered another world in a wardrobe.

Her siblings do not believe her tale of fauns and white witches.
But one day her brother, Edmund stumbles upon the magical world of Narnia and finds all that Lucy said to be true.

However, he has his own reasons for lying about this knowledge and later betrays Lucy by telling the other siblings, Peter and Susan, that Lucy was in fact, lying.

Peter and Susan go to Professor Kirke for advice and here is the interesting part--the part I wish to focus on:

(Professor Kirke) "How do you know," he asked, "that your sister's story is not true?"

"Oh, but--" began Susan, and then stopped.

Anyone could see from the old man's face that he was perfectly serious.
Then Susan pulled herself together and said, "But Edmund said they had only been pretending."

"That is a point," said the Professor, "which certainly deserves consideration; very careful consideration. For instance--if you will excuse me for asking the question--does your experience lead you to regard your brother or your sister as the more reliable? I mean, which is the more truthful?"

"That's just the funny thing about it, sir," said Peter. "up till now, I'd have said Lucy every time."

(Susan concurs when the Professor asks her the same question)

"Logic!" said the Professor half to himself. "Why don't they teach logic at these schools? There are only three possibilities. Either you sister is telling lies, or she is mad, or she is telling the truth..."

Now, about Joe Wilson's outburst...I have no desire to get into an argument about propriety.
Accusing the President of lying is more important than where and when it happened.
If the accusation is false, then the decorum was terribly breached. If the accusation is true then I believe Rep. Wilson's outburst to be excusable.
So let's focus on the accusation and try to figure out who was lying.
Let's apply Professor Kirke's logic:
Either Obama or Joe Wilson is lying, mad or telling the truth.
First let's ask: who is known to be the more truthful?
Has Joe Wilson contsistently lied during his tenure as Representative in South Carolina?
Has President Obama consistently lied during his time as Senator and President?
I'll leave that question to be answered by your own research.
I have posted numerous words about the President's "misrepresentations" throughout his time in the spotlight...so I'm not trying to be coy.
As for Joe Wilson, I've done some reading up on him since his foray into the hottest spotlight of all, and so far I've seen nothing untoward or nefarious in his past behaviors.
If someone has a different take, I'd be happy to take a look at it.
As to Joe Wilson's accusation against the President, let's apply the three possibilities:
Either Joe Wilson is lying, mad or telling the truth.

I see no evidence of insanity...on the contrary, the democrat-controlled congress are on the verge of looking insane if they keep ignoring the public outrage at their drunken spending sprees.

Is Joe Wilson lying?
According to the Congressional Research Report for H.R. 3200 (Obama's health care bill),
there is no provision in the bill to exclude "non-resident" aliens from government healthcare...which means they can get it if they want it.
The reference to illegal aliens and healthcare is the denying of a "tax credit" which residents with proof of citizenship will receive for their healthcare.
Ironically, citizens would be taxed extra for not taking the public option while illegals would not be taxed extra if they decided not to be forced into government healthcare with the rest of us.
It appears then, that Rep. Joe Wilson's accusation has merit.
(I need to take a moment to sigh deeply here...this whole debate is based on the premise that this healthcare bill will pass...and I'm not ready to accept the downfall of American liberty just yet.)

*SIGH*

So here we have it: Joe Wilson isn't crazy and he isn't lying. He is telling the truth.

What about President Obama?

Is he crazy?

I don't think so...obtuse when he doesn't get what he wants, but crazy? Like a fox, perhaps?

Is he telling the truth?

If he hasn't read the bill, then in a sense he believes what he is saying, but that would make him rather stupid to keep pushing this bill to the public without having read it.
And if he's that stupid, how many other things has he gotten wrong?
And why if he doesn't know what is in the bill, did he accuse certain congressmen of lying to misrepresent the bill?
Is he, as Rep. Wilson accused, lying?

According to the provisions in Obama's healthcare bill itself...yes.

"Nothing is more probable," said the Professor, taking off his spectacles and beginning to polish them, while he muttered to himself, "I wonder what they do teach at these schools."

redink
www.homeschoolblogger.com/thelionsmane/

Friday, September 4, 2009

The Deplorable Word

In the story "The Magician's Nephew" by C.S. Lewis, we find out the origins of the White Witch from the Narnia series.
When two children use magic to enter the dying world of Charn, they awaken the powerful Queen Jadis who tells the children how she destroyed every living thing in her world.
She tried to take the throne from her sister by force, but was defeated. When her sister declared victory, Queen Jadis spoke "The Deplorable Word" at the last moment and all life was destroyed.

What was the "Deplorable Word"?

(From the book)
"That was the secret of secrets," said the Queen Jadis. "It had long been known to the great Kings of our race that there was a word which, if spoken with the proper ceremonies, would destroy all living things except the one who spoke it. But the ancient kings were weak and soft-hearted and bound themselves and all who should come after them with great oaths never even to seek after the knowledge of that word. But I learned it in a secret place and paid a terrible price to learn it."

I took a facebook poll on this question:
"Should President Obama be allowed to give a nationwide address to school children without parental consent".
Now the question's importance lies in the "without parental consent" part, and out of the 160 thousand who took that poll, over sixty percent voted "no".
And every reason written in the comment section revealed their disfavor with the President overriding parental consent...pretty simple.
Presidents don't get to tell our children how to think, feel or act without our say-so.

But the majority of comments revealed a word that popped up continuously from those who voted in favor of Obama's speech without parental consent.

The word was "racist" or "racism", directed at those who disagreed with the President.

I read conservative websites daily and I've never read one single article from a journalist or blogger who wrote against Obama's policies because of his race.
In fact, one would be hard-pressed to find out what our President's race is when reading arguments against any of his policies.
His race only comes to the fore when Obama himself brings it up...which is sadly, quite often.

Racist: The Deplorable Word

No one can fight such a charge.
It removes all focus from the real arguments and annhililates the person protesting Obama's policies.

Once said aloud, the Deplorable Word continues reverberate.

It spreads across the whole debate of whether something is right or wrong, constitutional or lawless and turns everything to dust.
And it no longer matters if Obama is wrong to bypass parent's wishes, because the Deplorable Word has elimnated the objectors.

If you object to the President's wealth-destroying, anti-capitalistic economic policies, he can use (or have his minions use) the Deplorable Word.
Poof!
His policies are all that's left standing afterwards.
See...I used two perfectly sound adjectives (with hyphens, no less) to describe Obama's policies and they have nothing to do with his race.

If you object to the President's naive and dangerous foreign policy, the Deplorable Word will eliminate your arguments and make you disappear.

If you object to the President's economy-crushing, life-endangering health care bill, he has only to speak the Deplorable Word and reduce a townhall meeting full of everyday Americans to rubble.

...but Americans have their own Deplorable Word: "ruler"

(From the Book)
"But the people?" gasped Digory.
"What people, boy?" asked the Queen.
"All the ordinary people," said Polly. "who'd never done you any harm. And the women, and the children, and the animals."
"Don't you understand?" said the Queen. "I was the Queen. They were all my people. What else were they there for but to do my will?"
"It was rather hard luck on them, all the same," said he.
"I had forgotten that you are only a common boy. How should you understand reasons of State? You must learn, child, that what would be wrong for you or for any of the common people is not wrong in a great Queen such as I. The weight of the world is on our shoulders. We must be freed from all rules. Ours is a high and lonely destiny."

"Digory suddenly remembered that Uncle Andrew had used exactly the same words. But they sounded much grander when Queen Jadis said them; perhaps because Uncle Andrew was not seven feet tall and dazzlingly beautiful."

(my translation...with apologies to Mr. Lewis)
Americans suddenly remembered that Stalin, Hitler, Kim Jong Il and Mao had used exactly the same words. But they sounded much grander when President Obama said them; perhaps because they were not tall and dazzlingly African-American.

redink

http://fc03.deviantart.com/fs21/f/2007/284/2/5/The_Magician__s_Nephew_by_suburbanbeatnik.jpg

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Courage, Friends...Life is Beautiful

It takes courage to live this life.

Courage to face painful times,

Courage to face broken relationships, rebellious children, addicted spouses.

Courage to deal with loss.

The loss of our homes, our money, our dreams.

And courage to look death in the face and see all the beauty of life.

For Deidrea and T.K. Laux, their courage gave them five precious days with their son, Thomas.

Thomas was born with Trisonomy 13, a fatal disorder.

They filmed this heart-wrenching tribute to their son, to parenthood, to life.

And now they have the memory of those five days when they got to hold, feed, bathe and change Thomas.

Five days to love and bond and imprint their hearts with the knowledge of their child.

Five days in which Thomas lived a lifetime of love in the arms of his courageous parents.

Life is Beautiful.

redink

HT: Barbara Curtis at Mommy Life

http://mommylife.net/

Friday, August 28, 2009

Gutenberg and the Internet



This just in from CNET News:
"Bill would give president emergency control of Internet"
by Declan McCullagh
http://news.cnet.com/8301-13578_3-10320096-38.html

The U.S. Senate proposed this bill in the spring and Sen. Jay Rockefeller, Democrat from West Virginia, spent the past few months revising it.

But the revisions still give the President authority to shut down private internet access if he so much as sticks his wet finger in the air and declares "a cybersecurity threat".

From the Article:
"The new version would allow the president to "declare a cybersecurity emergency" relating to "non-governmental" computer networks and do what's necessary to respond to the threat. Other sections of the proposal include a federal certification program for "cybersecurity professionals," and a requirement that certain computer systems and networks in the private sector be managed by people who have been awarded that license."

When Johannes Gutenberg invented the printing press in the early fifteenth century, the first full length book he printed was the Gutenberg Bible.
With biblical truth made available directly to the masses, the people broke the religious stranglehold the church had placed upon them.

They knew the truth.
And they were set free.

Science, art, inventions, politics, geography, and the list goes on...all these subjects spread knowledge with the advent of the printing press.
Adult literacy exploded and the simple farmer as well as the lofty monarch could read about the world around them.
The spread of knowledge brought communities together in shared passions and interests instead of fear of the unknown.

And of course the powers that be did not like it.
They did not like the masses having access to knowledge...it weakened their power.

Power is the same drug today that it was then, and has always been.

If you don't think our President wants that kind of power, I'm afraid you haven't been paying attention to his reactions lately.
This is what he's done with the debacle of Obamacare:
He refuses to address the fears and concerns of ordinary Americans across the country.
He refuses to admit he's read it, or knows what's in it.
He calls seniors and vets who protest it, right-wing liars and organized mobs.
He is telling lies about the bill in the hopes that most Americans are too apathetic to find out what's in it.

But he can't stop the truth from filtering out through conservative news sites, social networking sites, and the like.
The jig is up on Obamacare, because of the internet.

Unconstitutional, liberty-killing laws cannot be pushed onto the masses if the masses know what's coming down the pike.
So Obama has to stop the information at its source.
...the internet.
He knows what a powerful tool it is...he used it to his great advantage during his campaign.
Now the pesky thing has turned on him.
Because the internet is neutral and beyond his control.
It can be used to spread lies or the truth.
And the truth has a way of coming out on top.

But, I have hope this internet power grab will take some time.
And time is not on Obama's side.
It takes time to lull people into believing it's for their own good.
That is why we've seen an unprecedented push of unread bills, and hidden amendments...these bills cannot see the light or the exposure will kill them.
That is why we didn't get to see the stimulus bill, or debate it before it passed.

So, I'm not willing to let this internet power grab alarm me...yet.

But, I'm open to the possibility.

redink
http://www.martinsville.k12.va.us/mhs/gdean/test1/printpress%5B1%5D.jpg

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Emos for Trees and Terrorists

I homeschool my youngest children, but my fourteen year old son goes to public school.
He came home the other day and told me about a film his teacher showed him in his World Civics class.
The show depicted various adults from all walks of life, hugging trees and crying.
They cried about the tree's pain. They cried about the inhumanity that cut them down.
They cried about the tree's being made into paper and houses and grocery bags.

I asked my son what he thought about all that.
He said the whole class burst out laughing. They sniggered and giggled during the entire film.

Because teenagers are fairly canny human beings.

They can tell when adults are acting like lunatics.

They even have a name for people who live by their emotions.
They call them "Emos".
Of course calling teenagers emotional is a little redundant, but apparently Emos kick it up a notch.

I'm not making fun of them, teenage culture is what it is.
They're just kids trying to find their place in the world.
But teenage culture belongs to the teenagers...and they know it.
So, when they see it in adults, they respond quite naturally with sniggers and sneers.

Now a few Emo adults let loose on trees doesn't bother me.
But Emos let loose to decide the fate of millions of Americans...well, that bothers me greatly.

With the recent release of the Lockerbie airplane bomber, Ali Megrahi, we caught a glimpse of what happens when Emos in the British government coddle and comfort the enemy.

The government hoped to show the world their sympathy and moral superiority by releasing the dying Ali Megrahi, convicted in the Lockerbie airplane bombing, to his family.
But from the enemy...they got a sneer and a giggle.
And the terrorist was celebrated upon his arrival. He will die in peace and glory, surrounded by family and given honor for his actions.
In the meantime, the families of the victims of the Lockerbie murder have lost their loved ones yet again. The death of every man, woman and child on that airplane has been rendered meaningless.
It is a travesty of justice and morality.

And now the Obama government is continuing this season of contempt for victims of terror by investigating the very people who saved America from further terrorist attacks.

Obama is going after the CIA.

Attorney General, Eric Holder, is launching an investigation into the CIA's interrogation techniques used during the Bush administration.

Yes, that's right. The lawyers have arrived to bring humanity, empathy, and good feelings to the War on Terror...er, I mean "Overseas Contingency Operation".

The effect is such that no CIA operative will ever get life-saving information from a terrorist again.

Instead, this is what the Obama administration will put in place...call it the Emo Interrogation:

"Obama Administration Urged to Consider Expanded Interrogation Methods"
by Judson Berger
http://http//www.foxnews.com/politics/2009/08/26/obama-administration-urged-consider-expanded-interrogation-methods/

"It permits interrogators to ask questions in a "rapid fire" sequence; repeat questions over and over; try to break the prisoner by focusing on his emotional anxieties or personal fears; change the environment in which the prisoner is being questioned; and, under very specific circumstances, keep a detainee separated from others.

"One method, the "direct approach," is simply when the interrogator asks questions. Another involves creating incentives for cooperation. The "emotional pride" approach is when the interrogator flatters the prisoner into cooperating by appealing to his ego. The "silent approach" is also relatively mild."

"When employing this technique, the (interrogator) says nothing to the source, but looks him squarely in the eye, preferably with a slight smile on his face," the guide says, urging the interrogator not to be the first to break eye contact.

"The new interrogation unit would report to the White House-based National Security Council."

Let's dispense with a security council and just have the interrogation unit report to the public schools.
They use those techniques all the time.
redink

The Painful Best

Learning to live without money is one of those blessings from God that looks like it's gonna hurt...and it often does.
C. S. Lewis says this:
"We are not necessarily doubting that God will do the best for us; we are wondering how painful the best will turn out to be."

Everyone I know has made adjustments during this recession.
When I talk to my family and friends about it, they've got lots to say about handling these tough economic times.
But the most wonderful thing is what I don't hear: I don't hear a single complaint.

Not one.

Quite the contrary, I hear hope and excitement.
With looming foreclosures on their houses, I hear excitement to learn how the banking system works.

In the humilty of showing strangers their money problems, I hear about new relationships being formed with the faceless people who handle their mortgages.

In the empty time-slots where restaurants and movies used to be, I hear how great it is to spend an evening with the kids and watch a show with a cheap bowl of popcorn.

While appliances break down and groceries become more expensive, I hear about how someone taught themselves how to fix a toaster, or make their own bread, or find out that empty side yard full of trash will grow a wonderful garden.

Who knew a recession could be so beneficial?

Well...actually, I did.
This is not a brag. This is a humble confession of living with financial instability for most of my life. I know what happens when you have to hunker down and count pennies.
I've lived the feast and famine cycle for so long, I now have the luxury of contentment whether I have money or not.
But, I also have great admiration for those who chose wiser and saved their money. The financial wisdom of other people is necessary for the rest of us.
Look at how many money advisors have their own t.v. shows now.
I'm a believer that life always educates us...whether we want it to or not.
But, it's easier if we want it.

...sorry for the rabbit trail.

My point is: I always felt good about myself when I was at my most resourceful.
And I think that's a pretty universal trait in all of us.

It's the "teach-a-man-to-fish philosophy".
It's liberating.
It builds confidence, independence, strength.

But most of all, it keeps us humble.

As strange as it sounds, confidence, independence and strength can only be built on the bedrock of humility.
And trying to fix the broken things in our lives is a humbling task.

Because we know how easily broken our world is.
And in trying to fix it, we know what it takes to keep it going.
And while we are keeping things going, we see that there are some things that cannot be fixed no matter what we do.

We cannot fix a broken spirit,
We cannot fix a broken heart,
We cannot fix the person we love, or fix their broken promises.
And we can never go back and fix our mistakes.
And that is perhaps the most humbling thing of all.

We can fix the broken lawnmower, but we can't go back and stop what broke it in the first place.
We can fix the broken window, but we can't go back and stop the baseball from breaking it.
We can build a garden and enjoy the fruit of our labors, but we can't make it rain, or stop an unexpected plague from destroying our efforts.
And then we have to start all over and fix what we can.

We live out the parable of God's plan for salvation with every broken thing in our life.
We can't go back to stop anything from breaking, but according to the Bible, we don't need to.
It was fixed 2,000 years ago on a wooden cross at Calvary.

God took what we broke and repaired it with three nails and a crown of thorns.

He stood between us and our doom and declared, "It is finished".

The best for us turned out to be God's pain.

Now He offers us Himself and only asks for our hearts in return.
And when our hearts break from the endless entropy of life, He steps in to repair them.

This recession is bringing out the best in us.
It's showing us how resourceful we are.
It eliminates the trivial and shines a light on the wonderful.
It shows us what we can do.
...and what we can't.


redink
http://http//camms.org/images/The%20Cross%20(Ron%20DiCianni)_0.jpg


Monday, August 24, 2009

The Grief of Politics

Before I became a Christian, I never thought about politics.
I lived in my tiny corner of the earth, trying to fit my square soul into a world with no square holes.

Politics had no connection to my life.
Politics was something men in pressed suits discussed in their quiet offices while sitting in smooth leather chairs.
Politics was a class in college taught in dry tones by a teacher uninterested in real life.
Politics was law and lecture; papers and pens, and best left to the news reporters to figure out and tell me when they had all the answers.

After I became a Christian, everything changed.
Now I had a relationship with the One who made life, and His words illuminated the world for me.
When I watched the news, I no longer took it for granted that I was being told everything I needed to know.
Because now I had a premise.
I had a foundation from which everything was viewed.
I had truth.

And politics changed for me.

I saw it as something that affected me directly.
I saw it move the world and by extension, move me.
I saw the people involved and realized their decisions could make my life better or worse.
And I started paying attention.

I was startled with an epiphany about the politics of abortion.


Roe v. Wade somehow got relegated to a political platform and people stopped talking about the consequences.
Broken women, broken hearts, broken lives.
...and something much more insidious.

I had a conversation a little while ago with a woman on the subject of abortion.
She believed Roe v. Wade was a necessity for women.
"Why?" I asked.
"Because the government should never be able to tell women what to do with their bodies."
"Should the government allow its citizens to die before they're even born?"
"Don't be so dramatic," this woman admonished me. "A fetus isn't a citizen. It isn't even viable outside the womb."
"If the baby is viable," I asked. "Then would abortion be wrong?"
"Well," she said slowly. "That should be determined by a doctor."
I could sense a shift in her perceptions. She had never really had to think deeply about abortion before...it was always a campaign talking point, never a reality.

I understood. I had once done the same thing.

"Can't you tell me at what point in a pregnancy you think abortion should be illegal?" I asked.
"I don't think that's the issue," she said. "If we just prevented unwanted pregnancies in the first place, we wouldn't have to deal with abortion."

And with those words, she dismissed the uncomfortable place we all arrive at when we are forced to think about life and death.
Because it's so much easier to place abortion on that shelf with taxes and policies and let it move outside the realm of our daily lives.


But our daily lives will continue to play out until they bring us back to the same place.
When we are old and unwanted,
or disabled and unwanted,
or divorced and unwanted,
or just plain smelly and unwanted...our abortion legacy is waiting there to claim us.
We feel it in the fear permeating the country with the push for socialized medicine.
We know governments are incapable of dealing with individual needs. We know the weakest are the first to be sacrificed for the needs of the state.
They round us up and strike off the negative economic units first.
But even as our instinct for survival still thrives, we all feel the fear that it may be too late.

Because for the last forty years America has gotten so used to abortion, that we elected a man to the Presidency who voted to stop a law that would have prevented the worst form of abortion...infanticide.

The Born-Alive Act demanded that doctors and nurses make every effort to save the life of a baby that survived abortion. And it was based on the testimony of a nurse in a Chicago hospital who held these viable infants, unwilling to watch a living human being tossed into a utility room to die alone.

No one disputed her testimony except...Obama.

In the Illinois senate, Obama not only voted against the Born-Alive Act twice, but as chairmen of the Health and Human Services Committee, he made sure the bill never came up for a vote.It was not until he left Illinois for the U.S. Senate that the bill went for a vote and passed unanimously into law.

Unanimously.

When these facts came to light before the Presidential election, there was nary a peep of shock or dismay.

Not even from professing Christians.

And I knew America had lost its collective way.

There are many people like me, who stood in confusion while a man who admitted babies were a "punishment", was hailed as a hero in our land.

And yet now, with this healthcare bill scaring the daylights out of seniors and the rest of us who know what it will do...we get to see the effects of abortion.

Of what happens when our leadership defends it. When people vote for the hardest of hearts to protect it.

Do these people really think they would never be considered "unwanted" or looked on as a "punishment" one day?

Life is tricky that way. Some people call it 'karma'.

I call it a season of grief.

redink
http://erlc.com/images/article_photos/misc/father_and_infant_hands.JPG http://www.foxnews.com/images/218885/0_61_abortion_pro_support.jpg

Friday, August 21, 2009

This Little Piggie...

Once upon a time, a famous pig farmer brought his prize boar to market.

It wasn't to be sold for slaughter.
It was a breeding pig, designed to grow and make more pigs just like it.
But this pig, it was told, would be a pig so enormous, so massive, it would change the face of pork production forever.

So this famous pig farmer...let's call him Farmer Obama...wanted to sell his giant pig to the valley pig farmers.
But he didn't show them what he was selling.
So, he hid his pig in a crate of words.
And stood at the auction block describing it in wonderous tones.
Telling everyone how marvelous, magical and down-right heavenly his pig was.

But something happened while Farmer Obama was trying to sell his pig.
Someone opened the crate of words.
And other people got a peek inside.
Then the pig waddled out for all to see.

There was a collective gasp as the valley inhabitants witnessed this breeding monstrosity.

They saw a beast too massive to hold its own weight.
They saw a horror of genetic manipulation from a thousand overblown breeds.
They saw destruction of the natural order of farming if this mutation were allowed to live.
They saw sickness and death spread with its progeny.
They saw a creature of unending hunger that would devastate their crops and pastures.

...and they shouted for Farmer Obama to stop!
They could not bear to have such a frightful creature breed. It would destroy them all.

But Farmer Obama only told them to put a cork in it.
And quickly got his pig handlers to usher the beast back into its crate.

But his dismissive words and shifty pig handlers only attracted more horrified farmers.
They filed into the market stall to see what all the fuss was about.

Sheep farmers, goat farmers, chicken farmers and crop farmers.
After one glimpse of the beast, they too, took up the cry of their fellow farmers.
"Kill the Pig!"
The entire valley spread the word, frightened at the thought of this monster breeding throughout their land.

And Farmer Obama grew petulant.
He became angry.
Like a man in love, he could only see the beauty in his beast.

He accused the pig farmers of organizing a mob.
He railed against the sheep farmers for telling lies about his pig.
He ranted at the goat farmers for shouting at him on the auction block and hurting his feelings.
He pointed at the chicken farmers and threatened to send his hired hands to their farms for some fried chicken.
And promised the crop farmers he would buy all their crops forever at inflated prices if they went along with him.

But the farmers planted their pitchforks in the ground and said no.
They wanted that pig bled.
They wanted it slaughtered.
They wanted is cut up and eaten with a side of applesauce.
And they never want to see such a beast again.

So Farmer Obama covered up his pig in a larger crate of words.
And sent out his pig handlers to convince the crowds they did not see what they thought they saw.

But the farmers were too smart for Farmer Obama's pig handlers.
They know if someone is trying to sell them a pig they've never seen...there's a con in the works.

But Farmer Obama hasn't given up.
He loves his pig. He pets it, feeds it, watches it grow with pride. It is his legacy, his gift to a wayward and tired old farming valley with no new ideas.

Now in these last days of August, and the first cold snap around the corner, what will become of Farmer Obama's fantastical pig?
He can't afford to keep it anymore...it will starve in the long cold winter.

His pig handlers are running for their lives as the people of the valley rise against them with pitchforks and branding irons.

They are pleading with Farmer Obama to let the pig go to slaughter.
"Raise another breed!" they cry.
They do not want to be branded or find themselves sitting on a pitchfork.
But if they don't sell Farmer Obama's monstrous pig, he will make sure they never work in his pastures again.
And Farmer Obama has the best pastures in the valley.
They are lush with promise and good times for all.
They have been cultivated by others for many generations.
Farmer Obama and his pig handlers are plundering them.
And there's many years of harvest left.
...what's a pig handler to do?

Oh! Oh! They wail.
It is the evil pig farmers of the valley who are keeping this wondrous pig from the people who need it so badly.
They are just afraid of competition.
This is a pig to beat all pigs and they don't want their fellow farmers to benefit!

But the people aren't buying it.

In one last ditch effort, Farmer Obama sat down with a once respected pig farmer, turned pig handler, and tried to do some 'splainin.

Joseph Curl from The Washington Times wrote today,
Quoting Obama:
"There's something about August going into September where everybody in Washington gets all wee-wee'd up," the world's most powerful man observed. "I don't know what it is, but that's what happens."

http://www.washtimes.com/news/2009/aug/21/flustered-obama-a-wee-bit-touchy-during-the-dog-da/?feat=home_headlines

Did Obama really say "wee-wee'd up"?

Another Obama quote:
"I know there are a lot of people out there who've been hand-wringing, and folks in the press are following every little twist and turn of the legislative process, but having a big bill like this is always messy," he said.
"And it promises to get a wee bit messier. "


Yes, an enormous pig is very messy.

"As far as negotiations with Republicans, my attitude has always been, Let's see if we can get this done with some consensus," he said, seemingly unaware that the Republicans appear to be just a wee bit wee-wee'd off at him."

Well, uh...calling Americans mobs and nazis when they are scared out of their minds at the sight of such a monster, will have that effect.

"Still, the president urged his faithful to work hard for his health care proposal. "We are not going give up now! We are not going to give up now!" the president said as his supporters chanted "Yes we can!"

"And some may just get wee-wee'd on. "

Indeed. Wee-wee-wee, all the way home.

redink

http://www.bookmakersltd.com/images/large/This-Little-Piggy.jpg

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Language Transformation Crisis Halts Tower Construction


I had a commentor from Canada leave me this response to the healthcare debate in a previous post:
Anonymous said...
"I commend you for attempting to dissect the health care issue. It is very complex. I always wonder why Canada keeps being brought into the discussion of US healthcare. The changes being made to the insurance system in the US will not in any way resemble Canadian health care, which is universal and entirely public.
We do not have a private option. We DO ration health care in Canada. We have rather long wait times for elective procedures and surgeries. We DO NOT ration emergency care. We DO NOT ration care to the elderly. These are plain lies. I am very pleased and proud indeed of our healthcare system in Canada. I am proud of my peaceful country. Incidentally we have lower rates of infant mortality and higher life expectancies than the US. The United States also rations health care, you ration it by the ability of the people to pay. Wealth is your criteria. As a born-again Christian, you should be fighting for universal coverage for ALL American people. Not covering a significant percentage of your population should be unacceptable. I thought we were to be advocates for the less fortunate?"

First, let me say this:
A polite and well-thought out comment is a treasure in my estimation.
I've seen an egregious lack of civil debate with this issue and I very much appreciate Anonymous' intelligent and reasoned points of argument.
This is the best possible way to discuss any issue...and I applaud you, Canadian Anonymous...I really do!

So, in the spirit of honest debate, here is my response:

Exactly, Canada!
WE are to be the advocates...not the government.

No government on this earth has ever given anything without taking something, be it in the form of higher taxes or freedom to choose or both.
By its very nature governments remove liberty with every law and every tax.
Christ never told us to put our trust in government.
He exhorted us to go and find the least of these to help. He didn't tell us to let the government help them. To pass the buck of healthcare is as un-Christian as it gets.

Churches often got together to help out an ailing member of their community with healthcare costs. They still do to some extent with fund-raisers and such. But it is more difficult than ever with so much government oversight and regulation.

Now doctors are leaving in droves as those regulations push their salaries down.
Pharmecutical companies are taking less risks with new medicines as government regulation holds up their products in red tape for years on end.
Hospitals are closing their doors because the government forces them to cover expenses which they are increasingly failing to reimburse.

In the end, it is the government who is motivated by money.

The private citizen wants to work at what they do best, provide for their family, enjoy the life they've been given, and have enough to help their neighbor.
Wealth creation isn't evil.
Those doctors and private hospitals and pharmecutical companies all incur heavy costs to be the best and give the best healthcare the world has ever seen.
Why should their motivation be only philanthropic?
Does earning money for something make it evil?
Does the government ever give without expecting anything in return?
No, but individuals do.
Does the government ever invent anything that has helped improve the human condition?
No, but individuals have.

I'm glad you are proud of your peaceful country.
It is good to love one's country. It reminds me of one of my favorite poems by Sir Walter Scott:
"Breathes there the man with soul so dead,
Who never to himself hath said,
This is my own, my native land?"

Everyone should feel that way about their land of birth.
I hope I always feel that way about America.
That is why I'm trying to get people here to think about what it is they are facing with this healthcare fiasco.
This mess of a bill is not even about healthcare, it is all about changing the face of America and removing every freedom we hold dear.
I'm not exaggerating, Canada.

To give the government the power to take a private citizen's money right out of their private bank account is unheard of in this country...and that's just one little paragraph in a 1200-page bill!
Just let me explain a little of our thought process, and maybe you'll understand my alarm.

America is by nature a freedom-loving nation.
We do not like our government grabbing such power.

Wealth is the by-product of a free, innovative and motivated people.
It is not the criteria by which we live our lives, it is merely the fruits of our passions and our ability to work hard for those passions.

Americans are inventors, creators, independent thinkers and movers. We don't like having our hands tied by regulation, or our efforts undermined by excessive and unnecessary oversight.

Americans are the first to help, from their next-door neighbor to an unpronounceable country on the other side of the world. We will give them the shirt off our back, but not the gun off our rack, because we understand true freedom has a price.

We have innovation in everything from food to transporation to technology, with the only limitation being government regulation.

And by golly, I stand by the claim that we have the best healthcare out there.

The one and only reform to our healthcare that needs to take place would be de-regulation from the government. Anything other than that will raise costs, ration care, reduce medical innovation and breakthrough medicines, close hospitals and give us fewer skilled medical personnel...as well as plunge us ever deeper into a recession.
Healthcare is one-sixth of our economy and the government has never been efficient with anything close to that amount of money...or any money at all now that I think of it.
Obama said it himself...the private mail companies run better than the government post offices.

I know we're coming back to the 'wealth is our criteria' statement you made, but quite honestly, Canada, I'd really rather have healthcare from a doctor who wants to make money, than healthcare from a government that wants to save money.

I don't see any contradiction with my belief in caring for the least among us.
Who will be here to care for them if the government decides I'm a 'negative economic unit'?
(If you don't know what that means...google Barbara Wagner. She's a cancer patient denied life-extending medicines and declared NEU by the state. Thankfully, a Christian stepped in to help provide her with her expensive treatments.)

Incidentally, Infant mortality rates are factored by birth weight.
A child weighing less than 500kg in Canada is not considered a living child.
This skews the statistics considerably.
In Japan, a child that dies within 24 hours of birth is labeled as a miscarriage....again, statistics become something quite different.

I could go on...it's the same with life-expectancy.

In the U.S. all infants who show signs of life at birth, no matter their weight, are considered living children...and counted in the statistics.
Be careful about stats.

And one more thing...when my fourth son was born, we had just gotten private health insurance. He had a heart attack after birth and wound up in three different hospitals to keep him alive.

In the end, the doctors, hospitals and insurance companies all saved his life with their passion, commitment and willingness to explore every possible avenue that could help him.
I'm convinced government healthcare would have let him die.

And out of a quarter million dollars in hospital and doctor's bills, we paid only a 5 dollar filing fee. Yes...five lonely dollars and we hadn't even had the insurance for a year.
Also, I met dozens, literally dozens of women with premature and gravely ill babies.
And none (zero) of those women had insurance...they were the uninsured that government-controlled healthcare advocates weep for.
...and every single one was given access to the same hospitals, doctors and medicines that I had.

They are the least among us and America takes care of them already, Canada.

Freedom doesn't mean everyone will behave compassionately or responsibly.
Freedom is kinda messy that way.
Freedom is a genuine risk.
But to a Christian who knows what it means to really be free...I'll cherish it, fight for it and spread its message as long as I live.

redink

http://wwwdelivery.superstock.com/WI/223/900/PreviewComp/SuperStock_900-8204.jpg


UPDATE:
Here's a link to an article from The Canadian Press
http://www.google.com/hostednews/canadianpress/article/ALeqM5jbjzPEY0Y3bvRD335rGu_Z3KXoQw
From Dr. Ann Doig: "We all agree that the system is imploding, we all agree that things are more precarious than perhaps Canadians realize,"
She is planning on addressing the Canadian Medical Association at a meeting to determine how to bring private healtcare options to Canadians.
The system is breaking down as it stands. This is the reason so many Americans are keeping a close eye on Canada and Britain's socialized medicine.
It is the platform from which we can see why government-run healthcare is unworkable.
...evidence, if you will.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Primary Issue Voter

I call myself a "primary issue voter"...not a single-issue voter.

From Noah Webster's 1828 Dictionary, we can define the term:
PRI'MARY, a. [L. primarius. See Prime.]
1. First in order of time; original; 2. First in dignity or importance; chief; principal. 3. Elemental; 4. Radical; original.

I am a first-in-order issue voter.
I am a first-in-dignity issue voter.
I am a chief issue voter.
I am a principal issue voter.
I am an elemental issue voter.
I am a radical issue voter!
...oh, I like that. Radical issue voter.
Makes me feel positively anti-establishment!
But it's one of those good hearty words that stewed too long with the Birkenstocks...it's lost its flavor.

I'll stick with primary issue voter.

When I vote, I look at the person who wants my vote and I want to know one thing:
Is my life valuable to them?
They may say it is when they're on t.v.
But how do I know?
Will they ensure my protection? Will they ensure my liberty?
Those two things are not contradictory.

After 9/11, I think many people came to the conclusion that we had to sacrifice our liberty for our protection. I didn't think so, because I voted for George W. Bush based on the primary issue.
So, is my primary issue defense?

No.

It is life.

How a person views life at its most vulnerable is the lens through which they view all other issues.
This is an important concept.

If a leader believes that life begins in the womb and should be protected, then it's highly unlikely that person's other policies will harm me.
Taxes, healthcare, foreign policy, education, civil law...all these issues are the water that flows out of the pro-life faucet.
If a leader recognizes the life of an unborn citizen, that leader will recognize the value in my life.

My right to make a living and not remove my incentive by taxing me into a hole and making me dependent on government assistance.

My right to seek out medical care that meets my needs and not be forced into a system where money is "saved" at the expense of my life.

My right to live in my country in freedom without fear of foreign invasion or control.
In addition, a recognition that countries need protection...there will always be a dictator somewhere in the world salivating at the thought of being more powerful than America.

My right to teach my children as I see fit, give them my values, instill in them my beliefs...recognize they are my children, given to me by God.
A leader who sees life in the womb will understand this concept and not see children as vessels of the state to be filled with state-approved curriculum, for the good of all.

My right to be treated equally under the law as the child in the womb is treated.

But most important of all is that person's belief in the right of women to have a choice.
And abortion is not a choice.

Abortion is what women do when they have no choice.

It is prison they are sent to when there is no support, no help, no encouragement for them to have their babies.

A pro-life leader sees the potential of life in everything...especially in the lives of women.
Women have the right to give birth to the child growing within them.

It is our right.

Women should not feel threatened when a leader shows their love for life.
And when a leader condemns Roe v. Wade, women should feel secure, safe, reassured.
Because that leader understand a woman's value, and they understand that the law let loose on this land in 1972 was a Pandora's Box of death.
They understand it destroys women and takes from them their real birthright.

A pro-life leader loves women and wants them to live lives of wholeness and joy.

A pro-life leader does not want a country filled with broken-hearted women who have to live a life of pain; a life without their child; a life wondering every year how old their baby would have been, what he would have looked like, what he would have done.

A pro-life leader doesn't play on the fears of women, a pro-life leader reassures them.

How much of our country's real ills and woes would vanish if we protected women and their wombs?

How high would our taxes be if we had leaders who encouraged parents to keep most of the money they earned to care for their children?

How well-educated would our children be if our leaders broke the bureaucratic stranglehold on the public schools for the sake of parents and their children?

How much stronger our defenses and respect from other countries, if they saw us care for the least among our own? If they trembled at the thought of what we would do to protect our children?

How much better for our healthcare if our leaders valued the life of the vulnerable? Would we see doctors and hospitals protected from frivolous lawsuits? Would we see more innovation in medicines and cancer treatments? Would there be less anti-depressants for women and more birth centers?

One can imagine a world without abortion...and see real beauty.

Or see the lies and fears put upon women by leaders who don't want to lose the power derived from those lies and fears.
Abortion is an industry, a multi-billion dollar business of death for our children and crippling self-hatred for women.
A leader who supports abortion is not concerned about women's rights.
A leader who supports abortion has no compassion for women or their babies.
A leader with a pro-choice ideology sees society as a thing to be controlled, curtailed and packaged into a workforce which serves those ideals.

A leader who supports life is concerned about women's rights.
A leader who supports life has compassion for women and their babies.

A leader with a pro-life ideology sees society as individuals who need the freedom to live, work and grow for their own reasons...not the state's.

That is why I call myself a Primary Issue Voter.

Because life is first in order, principal, chief, elemental...life is primary.

Everything else is secondary.



redink

http://prolife.villanova.edu/images/maternal%20bond.JPG

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

The Tower is Under Construction

There's so much going on in the world right now.
Global everything.
I think that's what drives people into craziness...TMI: Too Much Information.
There's so much information, we're forced into changing our language.

IMO, BFF, LOL, ROFL.

This isn't a rant against technology. I'm all for technology. This blog is technology. Facebook is technology. Paying bills online is a technological marvel IMO.

But I do resist the dogpile.
I don't think people are meant to absorb so much information. It doesn't produce knowledge.
Because information is not the same as knowledge. And with too much information, we lose the ability to discern the truth.

Information does not have to contain facts or logic.
Knowledge is application of facts and logic.
Information tells us only what another person thinks.
Knowledge tells us who that person is and whether they can be trusted.
To gain knowledge out of information we have to know three things about the source:

*If the source is experienced in the subject.
*If the source has a trustworthy character, proven through actions.
*If the source's ideal, or vision, is based on a precendent that has proven effective.

Now we have knowledge. But how to apply this knowledge?
Let's take for example, a subject with lots of information out there, but little knowledge:

Healthcare Reform

The information is a 1200-page document outlining the President's plan for changing our system. It holds within its pages, the information that tells us what we can expect if the government runs our healthcare.
Have you ever read a 1200-page book?
It takes awhile, folks...and it better be interesting.
The size of this bill alone should give us pause.

Here's an excerpt from page 58:
"(D)enable the real time (or near real time) determination of an individual's responsibility at the point of service and, to the extent possible, prior to the service, including whether the individual is eligible for a specific service, with a specific physician, at a specific facility, which may include utilization of a machine-readable health plan beneficiary identification card.

Translation: This is an identification card issued by the government with all our medical records on it...all in the name of efficiency, I'm sure. And we all know how efficient government is. They just created millions of jobs with that trillion dollar stimulus package. Oh wait...

Here's page 59:
"(C) enable electronic funds transfers, in order to allow automated reconciliation with the related health care payment and remittance advice;"

Translation: The government will be able to access your private bank account to pay for universal healthcare.
There's that efficiency thingy again.
But there's also that pesky liberty stuff.

Page 239:
"Limitations in physician's services included in target growth rate computation to services covered under physician fee schedule."

Translation: Limitations. This is rationed care folks. Now I don't know about you, but reading through this bill was very creepy.
It was dehuminizing. It was demoralizing. There is nothing in there that talks about saving life, extending life, caring for the weakest, providing options for the fearful. There was no humanity.

Now let's apply what we know about the source.
*Is the source experienced in the subject?
Obama has experience in organizing communities to protest the injustices of the world...but what does he know about how to remake the entire American healthcare system?
Is it even a crisis that needs remaking?
Does he know what to do with a sixth of the U.S. economy?
Does he understand the medical community?
Does he understand the outcome? Has he thought of all the unintended consequences?
What kind of bureaucracy would take place? Who would run it? The Hemlock Society? Hey...I'm semi-serious here. Obama put tax-cheats in charge of our taxes.
With more questions than answers, I believe it shows the source is inexperienced.

*Has the source proven his trustworthy character through action?
The President signed a stimulus bill which has proved 'unstimulating'.
He promised in April the unemployment rate would not top 8.5%...it is almost 10%.
He promised not to sign the stimulus if there were earmarks in it...there were 9000 earmarks in the stimulus bill.
He promised to give the public 5 days to review the bill before he signed it...he signed it the day after congress passed it.
These examples are dated, I know. The stimulus bill is so last crisis. But it is tangible proof of something he has now done...a record of Obama's actions. Do they show a trustworthy character?

*Is the source's vision based on a precedent that has proven effective?
Canadian, British and Cuban healthcare (well...let's stick with basic democracies, shall we? Canada and Britain), have their supporters and opponents. But their government-run healthcare does as all government-run entities do...they ration care.
Their reasons for rationing are sensible of course...to save taxpayer's money. I mean why would a governement spend extra money for only a few years of an unproductive citizen's life? These are the questions only a bureaucracy can ask.

Now Canadians and Brits also know they can come to the U.S. when their life is on the line and their government doesn't want to spend the money on an elderly patient's life-extending medicines, a terminal patient's life-extending medicinces, or a disabled child's life-extending medicines. Which leads me to believe they aren't clamoring for private sector healthcare because they still have a choice.
The precendent for government-run healthcare has proven ineffective.
The conclusion is that government-run healthcare removes liberty, is inefficient, devalues life to the greatest extent, has no vested interest in the individual and plunges the country into unretractable debt, providing a vicious cycle of higher taxes and less freedom.

Our President is telling Americans they are getting disinformation about his bill.
How to get to the truth?
Go to the source first. Read the bill. It is Obama's bill, even though he hasn't read it.
He is responsible for it. He wants it. He owns it.

If you believe in your heart of hearts that Obama would never sell you down the river, that he has a heart of gold, that you are the change he's been waiting for...then I suppose you have all the information you need.

But if you really want to know what this bill will do to your life as an individual, how it will change our economy, how it will shape our society, then gain some knowledge.
Because all that information does is build a huge tower to glorify another human being.

It's been done before.

redink

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/archive/e/e1/20080330134658!Brueghel-tower-of-babel.jpg

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Prestobama and His Sorcerer's Pen

From the archives.

Worth posting again what with our health care on the chopping block...along with the rest of the free-market economy.

Oh, and that pesky terrorism thing...er, I mean "man-caused disaster".
How's that working out, Mr. President?

redink: Prestobama and His Sorcerer's Pen

redink

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Community Disorganizer

COMMUNITY, n. : 2. A society of people, having common rights and privileges, or common interests, civil, politcal or ecclesiastical; or living under the same laws and regulation.

This definition is from the American Dictionary of the English Language, Noah Webster, 1828.
...so let's start with definition.

If we define a community as a society of people under the same laws, then suppose we define what a community organizer does, because if this society of law-abiding citizens needs organizing as the 2008 Presidential election showed; then shouldn't we know what's in store for us all?

From "The Community Organizing Toolbox"
http://www.nfg.org/cotb/12organizers.htm

"Organizers challenge people to act on behalf of their common interests."

America has long been a country defined by individual interests, with our Constitution and the Bill of Rights laying the boundaries within which we pursue our version of what makes us happy.
Communities within our nation are made up of people who have a common interest:
rich communities, poor communities, religious and secular, liberal and conservative.
The individual American decides what his definition of happiness is and gravitates to the communitiy which shares his views, ambitions (or lack thereof), and ethics.

To me, this defines America's common interest as one of liberty...freedom.
Which makes community organizing rather useless on a national scale.

"Organizers motivate people to act by creating experiences to challenge those feelings which inhibit action, such as fear, apathy, self-doubt, inertia and isolation with those feelings that support action such as anger, hope, self-worth, urgency and a sense of community."

Now this is interesting.

So the CO will motivate me to act by:
replacing my fear with anger; my apathy with hope, my self-doubt with self-worth; my inertia with urgency and my isolation with a sense of belonging.
Extraordinary!
One person has the capability to change my very soul!

...wait! didn't Jesus already do that?

Actually, this tactic has a name with its own definition: manipulation.
Again, I must point out, that to organize a community of individuals by manipulating emotions...well, it flies in the face of liberty, does it not?

"Organizers work at constructing communities which are bounded yet inclusive, communal yet diverse, soladaristic yet tolerant. "

...er,
...uhh,
I can only offer this challenge to anyone who is a community organizer or thinking of joining:

If you can explain with credible logic what "bounded yet inclusive", "communal yet diverse" and "soladaristic yet tolerant" mean without bringing on an aneurysm or speaking in a Martian dialect...I will shave my head and pass out daisies on the nearest street corner while wearing a placard promoting community organizing...amen.

'Reveille for Radicals' by Saul Alinsky

"A People's Organization is not a philanthropic plaything or a social service's ameliorative gesture. It is a deep, hard-driving social force, striking and cutting at the very roots of all the evils which beset the people."

"A People's Organization is dedicated to an eternal war...A war is not an intellectual debate, and in the war against social evils there are no rules of fair play."

'Rules for Radicals' by Saul Alinsky

"Any revolutionary change must be preceded by a passive, affirmative, non-challenging attitude toward change among the mass of our people. They must feel so frustrated, so defeated, so lost, so futureless in the prevailing system that they are willing to let go of the past and change the future."

"the first radical known to man who rebelled against the establishment and did it so effectively that he at least won his own kingdom – Lucifer."

Saul Alinksy: Community Organizer, radical Marxist.
President Obama absorbed Saul Alinsky's teachings during his formative years, when his ideology became entrenched.

Community organizing is not an action...it is an ideology.
It produces no work; it foments rebellion; it gives the illusion of freedom while taking it away.
It uses whatever means necessary to achieve its ends.

I think I'm ready for a little disorganization.

How about you?


redink

http://www.freeimages.co.uk/

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Truth in Baking


When I first started baking, I made all kinds of complicated doughs: natural sourdough starter doughs; brioche; flatbreads with three different kinds of flour; french bread with four different proofing stages and sponges so delicate they evaporated with a sneeze.
Some of them turned out great...others not so great.

But, one day when I tried my hand at the simplest dough of all--pizza dough--I got stuck.
Pizza dough is merely flour, yeast, water, sugar, salt and a little oil.
You just put all the ingredients in a bowl and mix; an hour later a nice, large pouffy bowl of risen dough should be the result.
...not for me.

I tried the same recipe for two weeks straight and all I could get was a lump of the same dough I started with.
It refused to rise.

I became obsessed. I went over that recipe with a fine-toothed comb. I tried different combinations at different times. I thought the water was too warm or too cold; I thought I kneaded it too much or too little; I tried bringing my bowl of dough over to my neighbor's house to rise, because I thought the temperature or humidity in my house was the culprit.
I must have thrown away a hundred pounds of dough.

Finally, I just gave up. I walked away from the recipe for a couple of days because I would cry every time I read it.
Six simple ingredients, and I couldn't handle it. My ego was severely bruised.

But I learned something from this...humility was the most important ingredient of all.
You see in baking--the truth is absolute.
You can play with flavors, but when it comes to measurements...there is no room for mistakes.

I took another look at the recipe a few days later and saw something different.
The recipe called for 4 tsp. of salt...that means teaspoons.

Now, salt is vital in giving giving the dough texture and support. Without it the dough would be a flavorless mass of nothing. But too much salt will turn dough into a hardened lump which would bake into a teeth-breaking loaf.
Too much salt prevents the dough from rising like it should.
...I had been using 4 tablespoons of salt.

For some reason, my eyes saw this: tblsp.
But, the real measurement was this: tsp.

And for two weeks I went insane trying to fix something a little dose of humility would have caught right away.
I knew the rules of baking; I knew if you got a measurement wrong it wouldn't turn out.
But, I was convinced I had gotten all the measurements correct...I kept reading the stupid thing day after day.

I just refused to see the truth.

The truth is irrefutable. We all arrive at the truth through different means, but it takes the same dose of humility to recognize it.

This is a link to an article by a columnist for the Chronicle Hearld: Andrew W. Smith.

Think of it as a recipe for President Obama's first 100 days:
From the article:

"•Obama’s first two major bills alone, the "stimulus" and "omnibus," cost nearly twice as much as was spent on Iraq over six years – $1.2 trillion vs. $650 billion.

•Obama abandoned his campaign promise of "a net spending cut," his first annual deficit – not counting bailouts – being three times the worst deficit under President George W. Bush.

•Obama’s objective in his first G20 summit – commitments to spend our way to prosperity with massive stimulus boondoggles across the G20 – was rejected out of hand.

•Obama’s objective in his first NATO summit – commitments to combat troops for Afghanistan from "our European allies," which Obama and his party imagined were ready and willing to fight if only someone "enlightened" like him were running things – was predictably refused, with some more European non-combat contingents offered as a token.
•Obama’s Defence Department announced cuts of $1.4 billion to missile defence, the day after North Korea test-fired its long-range, multi-stage ballistic missile.

•Obama’s "tax cuts for 95 per cent" turned out to mean $13 a week from June to December, to be clawed back to $8 a week in January – as compared with President Bush’s 2008 tax rebates of $600 to $1,200 plus $300 per child, which were notably scoffed at during the election campaign by Michelle Obama.

•Obama abandoned his campaign promise to reform earmarks, signing the omnibus bill which contained 8,816 of them.

•Obama took more money from AIG than any other politician in 2008 – over $100,000 – and signed into law the provision guaranteeing the AIG bonuses which later had him in front of the cameras "shaking with outrage" and siccing the pitchfork crowd on law-abiding citizens who had fulfilled their end of a contract and had their payment upheld by Obama’s own legislation. "

Now look carefully at that recipe and ask: if America were the dough, do you think it would rise?


redink