Yet further from the heart of things, what avail universal health care or corporate stability?
Saturday, June 27, 2009
Friday, June 26, 2009
But what is the relationship between having the freedom to worship and true freedom? Christ said in no uncertain terms that if you take up your cross (not necessarily the same as His cross) and follow Him, you WILL BE persecuted. Further, persectution is fertile ground for the growth of the Body of Christ (all Christian believers). Should we then pray that God sends more persecution? Umm, I don't criticize others who do, but that's not really up my alley. Likewise, although I think fasting is good for the soul, I don't think I'm called to do emulate monks who wore scratchy woolen underwear.
Why are more people than ever simutaneously concerned for the future of America AND foretelling a new Great Awakening? Largely due to the present state of politics, I'll wager, especially at the federal level. For example:
"Make the enemy live up to their (sic) own book of rules," Alinsky wrote in his 1989 book Rules for Radicals. When pressed to honor every word of every law and statute, every Judeo-Christian moral tenet, and every implicit promise of the liberal social contract, human agencies inevitably fall short. The system's failure to "live up" to its rule book can then be used to discredit it altogether, and to replace the capitalist "rule book" with a socialist one. (Courtesy Discover the Networks.org)
Newsmax rounds out the picture:
Their strategy to create political, financial, and social chaos that would result in revolution blended Alinsky concepts with their more aggressive efforts at bringing about a change in U.S. government. To achieve their revolutionary change, Cloward and Piven sought to use a cadre of aggressive organizers assisted by friendly news media to force a re-distribution of the nation's wealth.
In their Nation article, Cloward and Piven were specific about the kind of "crisis" they were trying to create:
By crisis, we mean a publicly visible disruption in some institutional sphere. Crisis can occur spontaneously (e.g., riots) or as the intended result of tactics of demonstration and protest which either generate institutional disruption or bring unrecognized disruption to public attention.
No matter where the strategy is implemented, it shares the following features:
The offensive organizes previously unorganized groups eligible for government benefits but not currently receiving all they can.
The offensive seeks to identify new beneficiaries and/or create new benefits.
The overarching aim is always to impose new stresses on target systems, with the ultimate goal of forcing their collapse.
If you think America was a bad idea and we should work toward its downfall, I guess this is as good a strategy as it gets. Obviously I think that's, ummm, SATAN speaking, since Capitalism and the Protestant Work Ethic (Weber), combined with the New World, has been the most significant force of freedom, democracy, and human rights the world has ever seen.
See also here: http://pajamasmedia.com/blog/once-upon-a-time-in-america/
In America, you were free.
Here was a New World. No kings, no knights, no dukes, no earls. No titles, no shackles, no pales of settlement. Some of us, shamefully, owned slaves. But when push came to shove, Americans were willing to kill and die to make other men free. It was true in the Civil War. It was true in World War Two. It remains true today in Iraq and Afghanistan.
We were never perfect, but we were always working on it — at least when we weren’t trying to make a buck, or maybe just trying to avoid attention. America was the land of promise, and the land that delivered on that promise.
American freedom was a huge, sprawling, messy, brawling thing. It consumed everything and anything, and spewed out an unimaginable bounty. For some, the freedom was about growing their business and making money. For others, it was about growing their hair and making love. But it was always here, for anyone willing to risk the journey and leave behind the Old World and its old ways.
But now that we have this wonderful place, this precious idea — what are we doing with it?
Already, the government runs our children’s education and our parents’ retirement. Now we’re allowing it to usurp our banks and nationalize what remains of our auto industries. Within weeks, Washington promises a plan to dictate our health care. To do all this, we’ve let Washington run up enough red ink to impoverish our grandchildren. As if all that weren’t enough, the president still found the time to kick our friends in London and Tel Aviv while courting a genocidal, election-stealing maniac in Tehran. He even gave a speech in Cairo — that oppressed, impoverished Old World megalopolis — in which he assured the world that America really is no better than anywhere else.
Well, once upon a time, we were.
...If the Old World comes here, where does the New World have left to go?
When the Puritans were persecuted in England, they risked everything to come to America. When young Germans faced the Prussian army’s grip, they gave up their ancient towns to come here. When Jews faced the Czar’s pogroms, they gave up their bucolic steppes for the slums of New York. Rather than accept stagnant lives in their own countries, Latin Americans risked uncertain lives in America. Rather than accept far milder impositions than our own, America’s Founding Fathers risked their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor just to sign their names on parchment.
What are our federal branches of government risking for us today? Certainly not their lives. On the contrary, they're betting their constituents' (yours and mine) lives and fortunes. Ugh, without faith in God this would be a dark situation.
My friend Dave also sees this struggle and is engaging: http://troubledcorinthian.blogspot.com/2009/06/wisdom-of-men-and-holy-spirit.html
To what extent should the Christian be a voice in the political wilderness? To what extent should human rights issues--even in our own country!--compare with spreading the Gospel?
Friday, June 19, 2009
Yes, our example is always an educational model for our children--we "are always teaching"--however my point was that too often people disguise their rationale for doing something as being "for the children," and even at times as a burden! This is not only disingenuous but also counterproductive. Children also hear what we say, and what we say becomes part of our psyche, so it would be better: "I'm doing X with my kids."
Thinking of the tax burden on the future, and the nature of government to encroach upon rights, Troubled Corinthian and I discussed the nature of government and what is the best direction for government today. He simply and brilliantly said that the crucial change for our generation is to lower taxes, to starve the government. Regardless of any other policy--to save the earth or the unborn, to become energy independent or insured against any health problem--government must be reduced.
We have entered the Age of Decadence. We have arrived here mostly due to the economic prosperity of the United States carried into the 21st century, which many historians have already posited will continue through the next 100 years. I love having a good drink, coffee, and dessert, and we typically revel in such an event as being "decadent." I'm sure you've seen "Chocolate Decadence" on the menu. The bittersweet definition, however, is usually directed toward the fall of the Roman Empire, in which society became too rich for its own good. Yeah, my 42" LCD TV isn't good enough; I need a 56" plasma screen. Kids would rather play video games all Saturday than play outside. This is uncannily similar to 2000 years ago.
This means for our government that, not only do we feel comfortable in our seeming isolation from overseas terrorists or any other enemy (unjustifiably, of course), we spend far too much time trying to redistribute wealth from those who produce to those who do not. Too much energy attempting to control education at the federal level. Too much in tax credits to people buying so-called "energy efficient vehicles" and building "green buildings" when these measure could never counteract pollution spewing communist China.
One lesson we should learn from the current financial crisis is that we need to--and CAN--survive on less...and that means the government, too. Why should it be expanding while "the people" are losing their investments? The government needs to tighten its belt, and that means lowering taxes. A wonderful consequence is that it will have less power to encroach on our freedoms.
Second, we need to throw ourselves at the feet of the Almighty. Only God can make the sun stop in the sky--not the crazy North Korean dictator, certainly not Osama bin Laden...and not even the U.S. government. The more the government takes control of the economy, the more it fails. We will look back at this moment in history and wonder why Americans allowed its federal government to use a recession as a rationale to take over General Motors. Our founding fathers would appraise this situation quickly and, like it or not, they believed in individual people's relationship to God more highly than the federal government. This worked hand in hand with contemporary Adam Smith's "invisible hand." Let the market correct itself...because it WILL, sooner or later. If the government tries to fix it, the crisis is prolonged...as with the Great Depression. The federal government attempts to be god, it will be slapped down, as have all other gods in history...by The Almighty.
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
The 9 Principles
1. America Is Good.
2. I believe in God and He is the Center of my Life.
God “The propitious smiles of Heaven can never be expected on a nation that disregards the eternal rules of order and right which Heaven itself has ordained.” from George Washington’s first Inaugural address.
3. I must always try to be a more honest person than I was yesterday.
Honesty “I hope that I shall always possess firmness and virtue enough to maintain what I consider to be the most enviable of all titles, the character of an honest man.” George Washington
4. The family is sacred. My spouse and I are the ultimate authority, not the government.
Marriage/Family “It is in the love of one’s family only that heartfelt happiness is known. By a law of our nature, we cannot be happy without the endearing connections of a family.” Thomas Jefferson
5. If you break the law you pay the penalty. Justice is blind and no one is above it.
Justice “I deem one of the essential principles of our government… equal and exact justice to all men of whatever state or persuasion, religious or political.” Thomas Jefferson
6. I have a right to life, liberty and pursuit of happiness, but there is no guarantee of equal results.
Life, Liberty, & The Pursuit of Happiness “Everyone has a natural right to choose that vocation in life which he thinks most likely to give him comfortable subsistence.” Thomas Jefferson
7. I work hard for what I have and I will share it with who I want to. Government cannot force me to be charitable.
Charity “It is not everyone who asketh that deserveth charity; all however, are worth of the inquiry or the deserving may suffer.” George Washington
8. It is not un-American for me to disagree with authority or to share my personal opinion.
On your right to disagree “In a free and republican government, you cannot restrain the voice of the multitude; every man will speak as he thinks, or more properly without thinking.” George Washington
9. The government works for me. I do not answer to them, they answer to me.
Who works for whom? “I consider the people who constitute a society or a nation as the source of all authority in that nation.” Thomas Jefferson
The 12 Values
* Honesty* Reverence* Hope* Thrift* Humility* Charity* Sincerity* Moderation* Hard Work* Courage* Personal Responsibility* Gratitude
Oh yeah. That's what I'm talking about! And toss in a little of this, and we'll be set.
"No Free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms." Thomas Jefferson
Monday, June 15, 2009
...it was Albert Einstein who explained, "Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." So which is it -- stupidity, ignorance or insanity -- that explains the behavior of my fellow Americans who call for greater government involvement in our lives?
According to latest Rasmussen Reports, 30 percent of Americans believe congressmen are corrupt. Last year, Congress' approval rating fell to 9 percent, its lowest in history. If the average American were asked his opinion of congressmen, among the more polite terms you'll hear are thieves and crooks, liars and manipulators, hustlers and quacks. But what do the same people say when our nation faces a major problem? "Government ought to do something!" When people call for government to do something, it is as if they've been befallen by amnesia and forgotten just who is running government. It's the very people whom they have labeled as thieves and crooks, liars and manipulators, hustlers and quacks.
Aside from the general level of disgust that Americans have for congressmen, there's the question of whether there is anything that Congress does well. What about Social Security and Medicare? Congress has allowed Social Security and Medicare to accumulate an unfunded liability of $101 trillion. That means in order to pay promised elderly entitlement benefits, Congress would have to put trillions in the bank today earning interest. Congressional efforts to create "affordable housing" have created today's financial calamity. Congress props up failed enterprises such as Amtrak and the U.S. Postal Service with huge cash subsidies, and subsidies in the forms of special tax treatment and monopoly rights. I can't think of anything that Congress does well yet we Americans call for them to take greater control over important areas of our lives.
I don't think that stupidity, ignorance or insanity explains the love that many Americans hold for government; it's far more sinister and perhaps hopeless. I'll give a few examples to make my case. Many Americans want money they don't personally own to be used for what they see as good causes such as handouts to farmers, poor people, college students, senior citizens and businesses. If they privately took someone's earnings to give to a farmer, college student or senior citizen, they would be hunted down as thieves and carted off to jail. However, they get Congress to do the identical thing, through its taxing power, and they are seen as compassionate and caring. In other words, people love government because government, while having neither moral nor constitutional authority, has the legal and physical might to take the property of one American and give it to another.
The unanticipated problem with this agenda is that as Congress uses its might to take what belongs to one American to give to another, what President Obama calls "spreading the wealth around," more and more Americans will want to participate in the looting. It will ultimately produce something none of us wants: absolute control over our lives.
The path we're embarked upon, in the name of good, is a familiar one. The unspeakable horrors of Nazism, Stalinism and Maoism did not begin in the '30s and '40s with the men usually associated with those names. Those horrors were simply the end result of a long evolution of ideas leading to consolidation of power in central government in the name of "social justice." In Germany, it led to the Enabling Act of 1933: Law to Remedy the Distress of the People and the Nation and, after all, who could be against a remedy to relieve distress? Decent but misguided Germans, who would have cringed at the thought of what Nazi Germany would become, succumbed to Hitler's charisma.
Today's Americans, enticed, perhaps enchanted, by charismatic speeches, are ceding so much power to Washington, and like yesteryear's Germans are building the Trojan Horse for a future tyrant.
Dang, if he doesn't hit the nail on the head. No wonder that in addition to serving on the faculty of George Mason University as John M. Olin Distinguished Professor of Economics, Dr. Williams is the author of More Liberty Means Less Government: Our Founders Knew This Well.
Sunday, June 14, 2009
What a waste of time and energy are conspiracies! Please help us focus on what's eternal, defend the weak and fatherless, and maintain the rights of the poor and oppressed. (Psalm 82:3)
Friday, June 12, 2009
The 15th Principle, one of my favorites! The Highest Level of Prosperity Occurs when there is a Free-Market Economy and a Minimum of Government Regulations. Most of this is straight from the book.
The Four Laws of Economic Freedom: Prosperity also depends on a climate of wholesome stimulation protected by law. Reduced to its simplest formula, there are four laws of economic freedom which a nation must maintain if its people are to prosper at the maximum level. These are:
Proper role of gov is to protect equal rights, NOT provide equal things.
By 1905 the United States had become the richest industrial nation in the world. With only 5 percent of the earth’s continental land area and merely 6 percent of the world’s population, the American people were producing over half of almost everything-clothes, food, houses, transportation, communications, even luxuries. It was a great tribute to Adam Smith.
Those are the values this country was founded on. One person CAN make a difference. You can teach those around you, your family, your friends timeless principles that we need to all follow once again.
Thursday, June 11, 2009
My short answer was, that we should not let a discussion with new believers get bogged down in a discussion of hell. I spent way too many years in college researching William Blake's "The Marriage of Heaven and Hell," peering into Dante's "Inferno" and C.S. Lewis' "Great Divorce," and now laboring under a media thrilled (under a romantic spell--see vampire meaning attributable to "thrill," especially in the novel "Monster Hunter International") with all things hellish. Allowing a serious discussion of one's immortal soul to fall into the hands of modern day gnostic entertainers makes me reach for the Tums.
Another fellow chimed in that hell, among other topics, can be a "smokescreen" to distract from the underlying issue: whether that person is angry, hurt, or what-have-you. Others, however, felt hell is a very important topic to be fluent about, to be able to answer those questions, and so on. Now I agree that hell is a very important topic, and that we should be prepared to answer questions about hell. Here's an excerpt from an article one fellow forwarded to me:
A close look at hell can make us more godly and compassionate.
That Hideous Doctrine
by John Thomas, free lance writer
...Hell is a place of darkness (Matt. 8:12). Imagine the person who has just entered hell--a neighbor, relative, co-worker, friend. After a roar of physical pain blasts him, he spends his first moments wailing and gnashing his teeth. But after a season, he grows accustomed to the pain, not that it's become tolerable, but that his capacity for it has enlarged to comprehend it, yet not be consumed by it. Though he hurts, he is now able to think, and he instinctively looks about him. But as he looks, he sees only blackness.
In his past life he learned that if he looked long enough, a glow of light somewhere would yield definition to his surroundings So he blinks and strains to focus his eyes, but his efforts yield only blackness. He turns and strains his eyes in another direction. He waits. He sees nothing but unyielding black ink. It clings to him, smothering and oppressing him.
Realizing that the darkness is not going to give way, he nervousiy begins to feel for something solid to get his bearings. He reaches for walls or rocks or trees or chairs; he stretches his legs to feel the ground and touches nothing.
Hell is a "bottomless pit" (Rev. 20:1, 2 KJV); however, the new occupant is slow to learn. In growing panic, he kicks his feet and waves his arms. He stretches and he lunges. But he finds nothing. After more feverish tries, he pauses from exhaustion, suspended in black. Suddenly, with a scream he kicks, twists, and lunges until he is again too exhausted to move.
He hangs there, alone with his pain. Unable to touch a solid object or see a solitary thing, he begins to weep...
A hard look at this doctrine should first change our view of sin. Most believers do not take sin as seriously as God does. We need to realize that in God's eyes, and in His actual plan, sin deserves eternal punishment in hell.
We can actually learn, by comparison, to hate sin as God hates it. As the reality of hell violates and offends us, for example, so sin violates and offends God. As we cannot bear to look upon the horrors of hell, so God cannot bear to look upon the horrors of sin. As hell revolts us to the point of hatred for it, so also God finds sin revolting. The comparison is not perfect, but it offers a start.
...Reprinted from MOODY MAGAZINE, Sept. 1985
Yes, it is important not to allow modern discussions to vascillate from "this is what churches use to scare you into converting" to "hell's not a real place." On the other hand, it is important NOT to let discussions with prospective believers circle round and round about whether hell is real or not. Likewise with any other smokescreen topic. Our discussions must rise to the level of, and remain focused upon, the love of Christ.
If someone raise the objection of whether a genuinely good person could go to hell, or if Hitler could have had a deathbed conversion, I offer the pithy response: "Let God sort 'em out." What's more pertinent to the current discussion is, what side are YOU on?
Tuesday, June 9, 2009
Back to our regularly scheduled programming.
The below is quoted from one of Gabe Suarez's emails to which I subscribe. This one in particular exemplifies our themes of the supplication of God's Will and the absence of coincidence.
Suarez International is dedicated to His service, and this section exists to glorify His name and to provide encouragement to our brothers-in-arms that serve Him as Christian Warriors. We believe that God gave us courage and called us to the profession of arms, and that its His will that we be strong and dangerous in the face of evil and the sons of perdition that walk this earth.
Responsibility and Preparation
When a publically-traded business fails, investors quite reasonably look at the CEO to ask what happened - and to place the blame. When a military unit is captured, the generals will want to interrogate the team leader for the same reasons. This is all very reasonable. One might even expect it would be an inherent aspect of leadership to "accept" such responsibility.
Yet today, when a church fails, many church leaders are very quick to simply blame their Boss - The Lord. "It was not His will", they will say, "that this church succeeds". What might we say of the CEO, of say, a failed automobile manufacturer, or a failed bank, if when asked about the jobs and livelihoods of those dependant on him, he simply shrugged his shoulders and said, "C'est la vie"? (That means "That is life" in French for any liberals that might be reading). Probably nothing you would repeat in front of a gaggle of girls at a Sunday service, yet it is OK for a pastor to use such an excuse?
What about when a family fails? You know - kids go bad, relationship ends in divorce, poor spending discipline, etc. Stuff like that. Whose responsibility is it? God's will, or the failure of leadership?
Listen. Do not blame God for your own mistakes. I often see failure in leadership as far as churches go because the pastor makes some sort of decision with his own interest in mind and not necessarily the interest of his church. Then, falling in love with his decision, convinces himself that it is God's will. Yet at every turn there is nothing but resistance and closed doors and problems. An attentive man might be thinking that God does not want him to go that way, but not the pastor (or Christian Leader) that has already made up his mind. He will press on and dismiss the resistance as spiritual warfare.
I do not believe God forces us to do things, rather, having free will, He will guide us. But all too often we refuse to pay attention. I remember back in 2002 when the idea of moving out of California first came up for us. It was a difficult thing as we owned a home, belonged to a church there, and still had family and friends there. So what did I do? I prayed. I asked the Lord that if it was in fact His will that we move, to please make it so easy that we would in fact know it was His will. Some might say such a prayer was unfaithful. Truth is, I don't care what they think. If they prayed such prayers (just as Gideon did in Judges) I suspect they would not make as many life mistakes.
In any case, God made the transition so simple it was almost too funny. Think of a door not only being opened after such a prayer, but that door being blown up by det cord and a big suction sucking us through the opening! But I consulted God before moving a finger. And most importantly, waited for an answer before moving. David did likewise as I recall.
In the old martial arts world we had a saying about preparations - Those destined to win, study first, then fight the battle. Those destined to lose, fight the battle first, and then study why they lost. Same thing here. Don't you think?
One Source Tactical
Suarez International USA
Christian Warrior Ministries
Matthew 10:34 Think not that I am come to
send peace on earth: I came not to send peace,
but a sword.
We have begun a new website titled
Christian Warrior Ministries
Take a look. http://www.christianwarriorministries.com/
BoG aside: I heard a market report last night which suggested that if Chrysler were allowed to fall a few decades ago, we wouldn't be in the mess we are today...not to say that would eliminate failure, but rather it would set a better precedent for success. It also made the interesting note: "Capitalism needs failure like religion needs sin." Well, let's not delve into the theology of that, but rather reflect upon our sinful nature, and need for a saviour, and upon capitalism's natural tendancy to have market cycles, successes and failures. To the extent to which the government interferes with that failure and subsequent recovery, the market will take longer to recover. It's take plenty of academic openness to admit recently that the Great Depression was prolonged by the New Deal, NOT solved by it. We can only hope that the U.S.'s inherent economic strength, and God's Will, don't make us pay for this meddling.
And on the poetic side, this is from a year-old mailing from Gabe:
To prevent the unforeseen when I’m alone and down the block, I pack a Holy Bible…a Bible and a Glock.
If the enemy opposing has a Christian soul to seal, I will bless him with a scripture, but if not…with lead and steel.
I want to live in peace with everyone I see. I shall always try to do so, as much as depends on me.
But there’s no evil I will stand, no devil hand that I won’t still, like the Lion and the Lamb,
the very hand that blesses you can kill!
To prevent the unforeseen when I’m alone and down the block, I pack a Holy Bible…a Bible and a Glock.
Gabe, thanks for all you do, as a Christian, and as an American.
Sunday, June 7, 2009
But who can tell the rest of the story?
More and more birds (Turkey Lurkey, et al) become similarly afraid, and together they journey to warn the king. Along the way, they come across the path of Foxy Loxy, who generously offers her den to keep the others safe while she undertakes the perilous journey to the king. Of course the sky is fine, Foxy gets fat, and the birds go missing or KIA.
Next thing you know, the government imposes extortionate environmental standards, takes control of a major auto corporation, attempts to disarm the populace and silence opposition...
Monday, June 1, 2009
Socialists advocate abortion rights, since socialism purports that "personhood" is defined by use value, which status can be bestowed by a person's caregivers. (A side note: aged people can have that status taken away when they are no longer useful. Keep that in mind as our nation contemplates a national health care system.)
So when does a person become useful to the movement as a whole? Answer: when they become true believers! As youths under the spell of their parents, proto-people struggle for meaning and awakening. If this is not acheived sooner, they may attend socialist purgatory--the university--for one last chance at seeing the light, before entering "the real world." Winston Churchill: "If one is young and not a liberal, he has no heart. If one is old and not a conservative, he has no brains." Sadly, modern liberals have become socialists, and conservatives are left fighting for both freedom and tradition.
Therefore, conservatives make life hell for socialists. Forge ahead.