Tuesday, November 27, 2007
This Great Society of ours, with mostly the best of intentions, seems intent upon normalizing the entire nation into a forced equality across every spectrum of life. Unfortunately the laws of nature seem to be such that a forced equality pulls everything down to the lowest common denominator. Excellence never could be forced by fiat. It is only when the possibility of failure, and its consequences, is allowed to counterbalance the ability to succeed through perseverance and character that the human spirit is challenged to shake off the dreary banner of mediocrity and strive for greatness.
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
THE PLAIN FACT IS THAT THE HARD LEFT has always had a fascination with fascism. They don't want diversity -- they want conservatives to SHUT UP! Whether they were making excuses for Lenin or Stalin and their brutish successors, went sweet on Cuba's Castro, Nicaragua's Ortega or now Venezuela's Chavez, they are irresistibly attracted to those opposing freedom. Why do you think they want talk radio to be "balanced" (i.e.: turned off) with the Fairness Doctrine? Because in their heart of hearts they think they know better than anyone else. They want to do what they want to do in the public sphere without being questioned. Period. American liberalism is awash in this sentiment, which makes having rational discussions about national issues difficult if not impossible.
I've got to find something to balance out the rather one sided nature of my recent postings. I wish someone on the left would say or do something positive so I could try to get back to a little more "common ground".
I'm frankly surprised that I haven't seen images of Hollywood actors kissing up to this guy. Perhaps its because somewhere in their ego-addled brains they realize that if it weren't for the might of the U.S. military they hate so much their freedom to bite the hand that feeds them would come to a rather abrupt end and they'd probably be left, quite literally, hanging out to dry.
Wednesday, September 5, 2007
Isn't it sad how idealism and positive activism are eclipsed by pride and a lust for power.
I know this story was supposed to be a love-fest, and truly it was compelling in that regard, but ultimately it can't hide the ugly truth. Already the cravings for fame and power were becoming visible.
Monday, July 23, 2007
There are many in the United States, I'm sorry to say, who are so intent upon seeing Bush humiliated that they are more closely allied with Al-Qaeda in Iraq then they are with the decent people of Iraq. Oh, I know they wouldn't want to put it that way, I know they aren't actually in favor of the atrocities being committed by the Jihadists, but truth be told they need Al-Qaeda to keep committing those atrocities.
If the insurgents are defeated that means that Bush will have been victorious, that he will be seen as a winner. That is something the left simply cannot tolerate. The left is deeply, deeply invested in the United States failing in Iraq. Iraq is their Vietnam, their holy grail. It is their chance, as they see it, to regain the power and influence they had directly following their victory (our loss) in Vietnam.
I honestly don't know if Bush did the right thing by going into Iraq. I have privately struggled for years with that issue. I can certainly say that I have disagreed with Bush about many things, most especially his stance on Illegal Immigration. But something had to be done, and many things still must be done, in our struggle against radicalized Islam and Terrorism. This was laid on our doorstep, we did not ask for it.
Have we made mistakes in the past? Yes. Will we make mistakes in the future? Yes. Do we just roll over and give up because things are hard? No! We deserve better, this world deserves better, than to be led by the weak into the jaws of the lion. One thing Bush and Blair will never have to worry about is being called weak. At least when it comes to their leadership in the fight against Terrorism.
The war being waged by the radical Islamists is a fight to the death. That much anyone who looks honestly at the situation can see. It doesn't much matter what we do or say, they have vowed to destroy us and our way of life. Pretending the danger doesn't exist won't make it go away. Trying to appease those who hate our very existence won't make any difference. We either fight them now, in Iraq, or we fight them somewhere else. War has been waged against us. Our options have been taken away. Peace, as much as we desire it, is not in the cards for quite some time.
Now is the time for the land of the free and the home of the brave to defend its freedom and prove its bravery. Yes, we've been sissified by years of feminism and other liberal dreck, but we haven't been completely emasculated. Not yet anyway.
Thursday, July 12, 2007
"Every day, 37 million Americans wake in poverty. Our response to that reality says everything about the character of America. John Edwards has called for a national goal of eliminating poverty within 30 years, with policies rooted in the core American values of opportunity for everyone and responsibility from everyone. We can reach that goal by creating and rewarding work, strengthening families, helping workers save and get ahead, transforming our schools, expanding access to college, breaking up areas of concentrated poverty, reaching overlooked rural areas, and expecting people to help themselves by working whenever they are able."
Now correct me if I am wrong, but does this not sound extremely conservative? Surely these can't be the words of one of the most liberal of presidential candidates. John Edwards apparently understands and approves of the traditional economic values that have made this country great. So, why is it that even though he makes such sensible and logical suggestions I have this feeling that his actions, should be become president, would be in direct opposition to these ideals?
I suppose we need look no further for the answer to that question then to some other words of John Edwards. We can find these words on the same web site where John Edwards gives his solutions to poverty: http://johnedwards.com/about/issues/poverty/
Create 1 Million Stepping Stone Jobs for Workers Who Take Responsibility.
2 points about this. First, who foots the bill for these jobs? The government of course. Second, if it is necessary to have illegal immigrants in order to fill the countless menial jobs in this nation why on earth to we need to create additional menial jobs? Correct me if I'm wrong, but aren't the jobs done by illegal immigrants stepping stone jobs? I can assure you they were for me and many others that I know as we made our own way out of poverty.
Raise the Minimum Wage to at Least $7.50.
The only jobs that pay minimum wage are the "stepping stone jobs" mentioned earlier. I won't engage in the minimum wage debate here, you can find that debate in spades elsewhere. Suffice it to say that raising the minimum wage is nothing more than a "feel good" opportunity for politicians to make them think they've done something worthwhile.
When I got tired of working for minimum wage I did what I had to do to work my way up the pay scale. It wasn't easy, but I did it completely on my own with no help from anyone, least of all the government. I can assure you that many minimum wage jobs would simply cease to exist if they were forced to pay higher wages. This is not because the business owner is greedy, but because they can barely afford to provide the job as it is due to the myriads of other hurdles placed in their way by well meaning politicians such as John Edwards.
Strengthen Labor Laws
By this John Edwards means strengthening and encouraging labor unions. I shouldn't even have to say anything more about this idea.
Create Second-Chance Schools for High School Dropouts
This is one of my favorites. Last time I checked, anyone who wants it has a second chance to get their diploma. But, I suppose John Edwards thinks we need a new government program, at tremendous tax payer expense, to provide a service that already exists.
So, if you think about it what John Edwards is saying is that we should encourage people to work, we should reward them for working (I think that's called a paycheck), and we should allow them to get a high school diploma. Well, that's just brilliant isn't it? I am positively stunned by the ability of John Edwards to get to the heart of the matter and find such insightful solutions. I say run, don't walk, to cast your vote for John Edwards.
Sunday, June 17, 2007
"With or without religion, you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion."
- Steven Weinberg
Tuesday, May 15, 2007
Friday, May 11, 2007
When despair has done its worst.
When despite has had its
way and the earth lies wounded
and bleeding in the
embittered fist of
its unholiest of foes
still beauty will endure.
A shimmer of light in the darkness.
The distant echo of wild
reminds us that the
Lord of the Forest rides
and the Kingdom of Summer
will not always be
in the mists
of a dream.
I think many conservatives are way off base when it comes to environmental issues. The idea that God made us stewards of the earth, and therefore we are free to rape it for our own profit, is strangely reminiscent of the attitudes of slave owners who felt their right to own slaves was given them by God.
On the other hand, the devaluing of human life by these radical environmentalists is equally misguided. There is a huge difference between human beings and the other forms of life on this planet. As the clearly superior race we have the capacity to value and protect our own race and also to value and protect the entirety of the earth. Conservatives and Christians should be leading the environmental charge while remembering the special position of human beings as children of God.
Friday, April 20, 2007
Thursday, April 5, 2007
As might be expected there will be roughly two versions of the story. Which version you accept will likely be determined by your choice of news sources if you are a mere follower or your political leanings if you take a more active role in filtering information.
To assist you in your own analysis here are two initial versions of the story. One from a left leaning news source the other from a right leaning news source. As you might imagine the left leaning news source paints Iran in a more positive light and the right leaning news source paints Iran in a much less favorable light. As you might also imagine the U.S. is much more of a good guy in the right leaning story then it is in the left leaning story.
So without further ado or commentary here are the stories. I'll leave the reader to decide which one is more appealing (I wouldn't dream of asking you to decide which one is more true...).
Just last night I had the pleasure and privilege of holding a friends newborn bundle of joy. The thought of a child like that being abandoned by their parents is incomprehensible and extremely sad.
Children are, quite literally, precious. They are our future. What has happened in supposedly advanced and civilized nations to reduce children to an inconvenience that can simply be dropped in a slot somewhere? I'll leave the answer unspoken. I think it should probably be obvious.
Monday, April 2, 2007
I just read a good piece on the British hostage crisis. It's neither a hawkish cry for retribution nor a dovish appeal to capitulation, which means there is actually some interesting information available to help you draw your own conclusions on the correct course of action.
This is one of those situations that truly test a nation’s leadership. So much is at stake and the costs, of action or inaction, could be astronomical. Citizens are screaming, and rightly so, for some sort of action. The whole world is watching and, as usual, they are divided into camps. One camp will denounce Blair as a warmonger, and a Bush stooge, if he takes a hard line. The other camp will denounce him as a spineless weakling if he does anything other than take a hard line.
It's not exactly the note Blair wanted to end his prime ministership on I suppose. But then, this is what leaders are there for. They are there to lead. They are there to make the tough and many times unpopular decisions. No matter what he does it will be unpopular with a lot of people.
Bush is a great example of that unpopularity: there is no way that Bush could ever make everyone happy in such a polarized world and thus he has never attempted to do so. Does that make him a good leader? I think in a way it does. History alone will tell us whether his decisions worked out for the best (assuming that history doesn't get rewritten by those with an opposing agenda).
"Do the right thing” we shout, when what we mean is "do what fits my agenda". I'd suggest that we really think about our agenda's. Think about what they really mean in the world we actually live in. This is not a social experiment where we play around with cultures, nations and people like so many chess pieces. This is a world of flesh and blood where your agenda (be it right-wing or left-wing) is going to get that flesh wounded and that blood spilled.
Conflict is inevitable. Even if we attain the utopia of the Federation, there will still be Romulan's and Klingon's intent on spoiling the party. As long as this earth lasts blood will be spilled; that appears to be the price the earth exacts from its inhabitants. That doesn't mean we have to like it, nor does it mean we have to take it lying down. It means we stand in the face of the beast and make every drop count for something.
The age-old struggle against tyranny and oppression goes on whether we choose to see it or not and it will go on until human nature no longer contains the seeds of selfishness, greed and a lust for power. Our agenda's mean nothing if they deny this fact. They hold no value if they remain ignorant of the human ability to be inhuman. It has been said that freedom is not free and I believe it to be true. The price of freedom is, and always has been, measured in blood.
Honor the blood of the fallen. Do not hastily add to its flow. Count the cost very carefully. Pray that you don't live to see the times of testing, but if you are tested do not be found wanting. What is it you stand for? No matter the intentions what are the actual results of your agendas? This requires wisdom. This requires courage. This requires strength. This requires that we stand, against all odds, against all hope, stand.
If you have a kid in school don't think for a second that they are getting anything even remotely resembling a well balanced education. In fact they're probably being fed all manner of insane PC drivel at the expense of real social studies and history. It's up to us as parents to either pony up the cash to send our kids to "real" schools or see to it that we educate them at home. I suppose the school might do an OK job at the three R's (although even that is up for debate), but I'd suggest taking a cold hard look at what they're being taught in other subjects.
They're our kids. Offering them up to be sacrificed on the altars of political correctness, moral relativism and multiculturalism ranks right up there with child abandonment and child abuse in my opinion.
Monday, March 26, 2007
I don't know how it is that I am just finding out about this; better late then never I suppose. I've read the short version of this story in the Silmarillion and the longer version in Unfinished Tales and remember being completely captivated and enthralled with the tragic tale. To have a full narrative version of the story is truly a gift.
Christopher Tolkien's life has been one of dedication to his father's legacy and also to his father's many fans. What better way could there be to wrap up nearly a lifetime of loving devotion. Thanks Christopher.
Tuesday, March 20, 2007
It is very good to be reminded that sitting here reading and writing about the Iraq situation is a far cry from actually being personally involved.
Tuesday, March 13, 2007
Tuesday, March 6, 2007
Well, I'm not afraid to say it. This is so many kinds of wrong I don't even know where to start.
Next time someone starts equating conservative Christians in the United States with conservative Islam ask them to take this story, and so many others like it, into account. There is no comparison and anyone saying there is is certifiably nuts.
Friday, March 2, 2007
Take this statement: " These factors, researchers say, explain how North Africa, where Muslim societies require circumcision and strongly discourage sex outside monogamous and polygamous marriages, has largely avoided AIDS. They also explain why the epidemic is far more severe south of the Sahara, where webs of multiple sex partners are more common, researchers say."
What needs to be added? What more needs to be said? Thankfully they didn't use a Christian society as an example, if they had it would never be reported because, after all, attaching anything positive to Christianity is all but forbidden in the mainstream media.
All that being said I'm very happy to see stories like this, especially in a paper like the Washington Post. They deserve major kudos for having the guts to print such a story. It seems as if abstinence has become a dirty word, a politically incorrect word, I'm happy to see it reported positively for once.
Thursday, March 1, 2007
Friday, February 23, 2007
Thursday, February 22, 2007
According to certain politicians and pundits, however, this is actually bad for the President. They make hay of the irony of the British troops pulling out at the same time as Bush wants to send more American soldiers.
So which is it? Is it a positive thing that should make Bush look good or is it a negative thing that should make Bush look bad? I'll bet your answer to that question would be very easy to predict by anyone who knows you well, which leads me to make a couple of points.
First, why is everything viewed through the lens of politics? Why is it that when dealing with the facts of the British pulling out of Iraq the single most important thing on everyone's mind is how it reflects on Bush and his policies? Can't we just call a spade a spade sometimes?
Second, doesn't it trouble you that your answer to the question I posed would be so easy to predict? What does that tell you about yourself and the countless others (including me more often than I'd like) who don't seem to have the capability for original thought.
Finally, doesn't it bother you that we have two primary groups of pundits, politicians and people who have squared off against each other over the Iraq situation. The pro-war side is adamant about their position. To them there must be success in Iraq because that will prove that they were right. The anti-war side is equally adamant about their position. To them there must be failure in Iraq because that will prove that they were right. The one side can't afford to have us lose in Iraq and the other side can't afford to have us win. And what is the primary motivation behind both sides? You guessed it: politics. The winners (of the political game, not the war in Iraq) get all kinds of political points and the losers (of the political game, not the war in Iraq) get to hang their heads in shame. Long term issues like national security, what it means to be a good citizen of the world and, gasp, what's best for Iraq and other places like it don't seem to really matter much.
For an example of what we should be doing, by which I mean thoughtful, reasoned and civil debate, head over and check out a debate between Frank Gaffney and Tony Campolo on the campus of Eastern University. Just scroll down till you find the links from February 19 2007.
Wednesday, February 21, 2007
It looks to me like nothing much is really going to change. Oh, the Dems will pay some lip service here and there but ultimately money talks regardless of which side of the aisle you're on. Seems like they're pretty much a one-trick-pony at this point. It's pretty sad when failure in Iraq and the humiliation of Bush/Cheney is your sole reason for existence.
I'm willing to be convinced that the Democrats have more to offer than hoping and plotting for failure. Sure, maybe we are destined to fail in Iraq. It is, after all, not completely up to us. The Iraqi's do have a say in the matter as well. But playing politics with the lives of the Iraqi's and the lives of our soldiers is pretty pathetic. Show me some leadership. Show me some original thinking. Show me that you really are interested in seeing this world become a better place for all humanity and that you have the patience and strength to truly fight for the underdog no matter how difficult, painful and time consuming the fight may be.
Some of the inspiration for this little tirade came from here.
Tuesday, February 20, 2007
I'm going to imagine that there are two people reading this post. One is a committed Christian right-to-life advocate. The other is a committed Progressive right-to-choose advocate. I am going to pose two positions and I want your honest opinion.
1. To the lefty: given that a baby born at 22 weeks can survive outside of the womb aren't you compelled to change your stance on the issue of Abortion? Isn't it true that its getting a lot harder to maintain that abortion is not the taking of a human life?
2. To the righty: be honest, if your 14 year old daughter was raped and became pregnant could you actually look me in the eye and tell me that you'd force her to carry that baby to full term and then either keep it or give it up for adoption?
These are honest questions, and if you are intellectually honest you each have to admit that there is a conflict raging inside you when you give the answer that your belief system forces you to give. But, you will obviously give the answer your belief system forces you to give. You have to don't you?
Now look at each other. You aren't so different after all. You're each making decisions that your strongly held beliefs force you to make. Kinda makes you think doesn't it? Maybe the Christian isn't the only one with "Religious" beliefs. Maybe the Christian isn't the only one being a "fundamentalist", towing the party line and subscribing to "group think".
As for the choice perspective, I'm pretty sure you're not taking that side because you want to see babies killed. I'm pretty sure you really believe that you're advocating for the greatest good to society and humanity.
I'd just like to ask you both to be open minded and when faced with advances in science don't shrink in fear behind the barricades of your agenda's and your groups. Whether that science seems to challenge creationism or whether it seems to challenge the practice of abortion don't be afraid of it. Because after all, the truth can withstand any amount of scrutiny.
Admittedly this is pretty scary stuff and if it were legitimate we might have real cause for concern. I'm no psychologist, but I bet I could craft a survey that painted the left in an equally bad light.
Left or right taken to an extreme pretty much ends up at the same place. Ultimately it comes down to applying the "final solution" and eliminating those pesky elements of society that stand against what is "obviously" the correct path. Whether you are a Marxist, an Anarchist or a Fascist doesn't much matter when your movement gains the critical mass and those standing in the way have to be dealt with.
So come down from your snobby ivory towers and admit one thing. The constitution and bill-of-rights laid down by the founding fathers of the United States was brilliant in recognizing the dangers of any group, right or left, gaining too much power or thinking too highly of themselves. The dangers inherent in human beings are inherent in ALL human beings regardless of political persuasion (and yes that includes YOU). History proves that point quite nicely.
Finally, a couple of pieces I found that counter the RWA premise are here and here.
Monday, February 19, 2007
Somehow cutting and running just seems wrong, but on the other hand what will happen if we stay the course? Do the American people have the stomach for sticking it out as long as it takes? Fed a steady diet of demoralization from the Media and the leaders in Congress it doesn't seem likely.
All I seem to hear, on both sides of the issue, are sound bites. Emotional appeals are completely trumping an honest examination of the situation. I guess that's the society we live in. Give it to me in 5 minutes or don't bother me. Guess that goes for Iraq as well.
Enough whining, let's dig a little. How about a little Iraq history lesson for starters. And you might be surprised at the conclusion given what you think you know about me.
Saturday, February 17, 2007
He says: "To be honest, it does lean towards the right, but it does admit the use of soldiers and families as props by BOTH sides of the aisle. Now, if we can honor current soldiers and veterans for their sacrifice and their service without using them to prop up what should be a intense, logical, well-reasoned, objective debate, we'd get a lot further discussing the merits or flaws of any proposed policies."
I couldn't agree more. Real debate assumes the possibility of swaying your opponents opinion. The posturing of our politicians doesn't seem to hold out much hope of that. Instead it's a competition of melodrama's. And that goes for both sides. Blech!
Friday, February 16, 2007
I've been reading an excellent book which illustrates the damage that can be done by these robber barons. The book is Internal Combustion by Edwin Black and the accompanying web site provides a variety of compelling tidbits.
How does Christianity compare with other religions in the news today? Does it have a better track record or has it also had a history of oppression and violence? If you came up through our school systems, watch TV and movies and listen to the various voices of the media you likely think it has a rather sordid history.
I believe this view is actually a complete lie and distortion and invite you to examine the truth of the matter in this great little article.
Thursday, February 15, 2007
Wednesday, February 14, 2007
Time goes by and the family becomes comfortable and happy in their house, safe from the attacks of roving gangs. As they become more comfortable they start watching the actions of the security guard from time to time. They notice that sometimes he has to use force to repulse the gangs. Sometimes an attacker will be hurt or even killed. This begins to trouble the family. They express their concerns to the security guard. "Can't you be less violent? Is it really necessary to hurt or kill these attackers?" they say. The security guard assures them that although he doesn't want to hurt anyone sometimes it is necessary. The family accepts this for a time.
After many years the parents have died and the children are now in control of the house. They have forgotten what it was like to live without the security guard and have become increasingly obsessed with the sometimes violent actions the security guard must resort to in order to defend them. They decide that this can no longer be tolerated so they begin giving the security guard specific instructions, limiting his actions against the attackers. The guard does his best to comply, but at times he has no choice but to use firm action against the attackers in order to defend the family.
The family finally have had enough. They begin to ridicule the security guard, calling him intolerant and a lover of violence. They become enamored with the roving gangs and begin to think that perhaps it is their own fault that the gangs are so violent. Perhaps if they didn't have such a nice house and live in such comfort the gangs would not be so intent on harming them. Perhaps it is partially the security guards fault for being so cruel and violent in his actions against them. In the end, when it is clear that the security guard will not obey their instructions to cease from harming the attacking gangs they fire him and he is forced to leave his post.
That very night a gang attacks the house. They find the family gathered around the television laughing at a show portraying security guards as ignorant, intolerant fools whose only desire is to stand in the way of poor misunderstood gang members. The gang tortures and kills the family in a horrible fashion and takes the house for themselves. Within months the house is dirty, run down and indistinguishable from the other houses in the neighborhood. A person visiting the neighborhood would never know that once the house was well kept and that in it had lived a safe and happy family.
Tuesday, February 13, 2007
I know what you're saying. Here he goes bashing someone in spite of everything he said earlier. Well, surprise, I'm not going to bash Barack Obama for saying what he did.
I'm just going to ask a question. Must we parse every word and nuance of every politician? Why do we and the media hold them up to such impossible scrutiny. I mean, lets face it, we all know exactly what Barack Obama thinks about the Iraq situation. No amount of backpedaling is going to change that. And why should he have to backpedal? What's next, will he have to go into rehab claiming that some drug or alcohol addiction caused him to say what he said?
I don't think Obama hates soldiers or truly wants to diminish their heroism or courage. I don't think any reasonable person would think that. He was attempting to make it clear how much he opposes the President and got a little carried away. Sure words mean things, but good grief give people a break.
It's really quite simple. Obama opposes the war in Iraq and he opposes the President. If you agree with him then maybe you vote for him. If you disagree with him then you certainly won't vote for him. If we can't get past every little slip-up and judge politicians on the bulk of their words and actions then we won't get anywhere. We'll just spend all our time sniping back and forth about the latest gaffes instead of focusing on the major issues.
I'll let people know it exists, and maybe they'll stop by from to time or subscribe to the feed. Quite likely no one will ever read this, but that's OK. It will just be my journal. Maybe in a few hundred years when a new breed of Archaeologists are sifting through the digital rubble of our civilization someone will read it and get an insight into what one person, at least, was thinking.
If I have an agenda it is to find common sense ideas that rational people everywhere can agree on. People are so caught up in their politics and agendas. They spend their days hunkered down with fellow ideologues lashing out in fear-inspired hatred at those who don't share their views. That needs to stop.
If you're a lover of freedom and democracy lets figure out what we have in common, realize there are a lot of forces in the world howling for our destruction, and stand united against those forces. If you're not a lover of freedom and democracy then hopefully you will find something here to change your mind.