Tuesday, May 23, 2017

The Feds Have NO Right Interfering With Religion

I consider the government of the United States as interdicted by the Constitution from intermeddling with religious institutions, their doctrines, discipline, or exercises. This results not only from the provision that no law shall be made respecting the establishment or free exercise of religion, but from that also which reserves to the States the powers not delegated to the United States. Certainly, no power to prescribe any religious exercise or to assume authority in any religious discipline has been delegated to the General Government. It must then rest with the States.

Thomas Jefferson (1808)

Monday, May 22, 2017

History Need to Illuminate the Future

When the past no longer illuminates the future, the spirit walks in darkness.

Alexis de Tocqueville, cited by Alvin J. Schmidt, “The American Muhammad: Joseph Smith, Founder of Mormonism,” pg. 247

Saturday, May 20, 2017

The Media and Islam

The real Muhammad is no longer revealed in numerous books or in much of the media, a phenomenon largely the result of the ubiquitous presence of political correctness in the West.  With few exceptions, he is falsely portrayed as an irenic man who founded a religion of peace, contrary to the Koran’s numerous verses that specifically advocate violence and the killing of “infidels.” . . . 

In recent years, the Western print media, movies, and television have produced various negative portrayals of Jesus Christ and of Christianity.  But Muhammad’s past violent activities, clearly stated in the Koran and in the Hadith, are overlooked by the media and by apologists of Islam.

Alvin J. Schmidt, “The American Muhammad: Joseph Smith, Founder of Mormonism,” pg. 208-209

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Reviewing the Heart

What lies behind us and lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

Monday, May 15, 2017

With Absolute Power Lies Come True

Those in possession of absolute power can not only prophesy and make their prophecies come true, but can also lie and make their lies come true.

Eric Hoffer, cited by Alvin J. Schmidt in, “The American Muhammad: Joseph Smith, Founder of Mormonism,” pg. 187

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Saturday, May 13, 2017

True Law

True law is right reason in agreement with nature; it is of universal application, unchanging and everlasting; it summons to duty by its command, and averts from wrongdoing by its prohibitions.

Marcus Tullius Cicero (106-43 BC), The Republic, II: XXXII:33

Friday, May 12, 2017

Start Listening!

History repeats itself because no one was listening to the first time.


Thursday, May 11, 2017

Orwell and Huxley Revisited

We were keeping our eye on 1984.  When the year came and the prophecy didn’t, thoughtful Americans sang softly in praise of themselves.  The roots of liberal democracy had held.  Wherever else the terror had happened, we, at least, had not been visited by Orwellian nightmares.

But we had forgotten that alongside Orwell’s dark vision, there was another — slightly older, slightly less well known, equally chilling: Aldous Huxley’s Brave New Word.  Contrary to common belief even among the educated, Huxley and Orwell did not prophesy the same thing.  Orwell warns that we will be overcome by an externally imposed oppression.  But in Huxley’s vision, no Big Brother is required to deprive people of their autonomy, maturity and history.  As he saw it, people will come to love their oppression, to adore the technologies that undo their capacities think.

What Orwell feared were those who would ban books.  What Huxley feared was that there would be no reason to ban a book, for there would be no one who wanted to read one.  Orwell feared those who would deprive us of information.  Huxley feared those who would give us so much that we would be reduced to passivity and egoism.  Orwell feared that the truth would be concealed from us.  Huxley feared the truth would be drowned in a sea of irrelevance.  Orwell feared we would become a captive culture.  Huxley feared we would become a trivial culture, preoccupied with some equivalent of the feelies, the orgy porgy, and the centrifugal bumblepuppy.

As Huxley remarked in Brave New World Revisited, the civil libertarians and rationalists who are ever on the alert to oppose tyranny “failed to take into account man’s almost infinite appetite for distractions.”  In 1984, Huxley added, “people are controlled by inflicting pain.” in Brave New World, they are controlled by inflicting pleasure. In short, Orwell feared that what we hate will ruin us.  Huxley feared that what we love will ruin us.

Neil Postman, Amusing Ourselves to Death: Public Discourse in the Age of Show Business.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

It Is Essential to be Armed

[T]o preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms, and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them.

Federal Farmer (1787)

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Government-Directed Financial Collapse

The trend today is toward more and more control of the economy by government that goes directly against our traditions, against the ideas of freedom and individual initiative that made us great. . . .   There’s no question that the self-sufficiency and material well-being of Americans are being diminished by government.  We’re following England down the road to intellectual and financial destruction.

Barry Goldwater, 1975.  Cited by
Clarence B. Carson, A Basic History of the United States, Volume 5: The Welfare State 1929-1985, pg.309

Monday, May 8, 2017

The Power of the State to Manipulate

Part of the reason for [the half-hearted and inefficient tyrannies of the past] was that in the past no government had the power to keep its citizens under constant surveillance.  The invention of print, however, made it easer to manipulate public opinion, and the film and radio carried the process further.  With the development of television, and the technical advance which made it possible to receive and transmit it simultaneously on the same instrument, private life came to an end. . . .   The possibility of enforcing not only complete obedience to the will of the State, but complete uniformity of opinion on all subjects, now existed for the first time.

George Orwell, 1984

Sunday, May 7, 2017

SCOTUS and the Abortion Decision Fraud

Justice Blackmun wrote the majority opinion in Roe vs. Wade in 1973.  This was judicial activism of the boldest kind (though technically it only nullified state laws) and for many Americans ranks as the most notorious of all decisions by the high court.  It was the decision by which the Supreme Court declared unconstitutional laws in 46 states which prohibited various sorts of elective abortions in the first six months of pregnancy.  Justice Blackmun claimed that the question of abortion was covered under an alleged “right of personal privacy” of the mother to dispose of what was allegedly a part of her body.  He admitted that “The Constitution does not explicitly mention any right of privacy.:”  But, “In a line of decisions . . . , the Court has recognized that a right of personal privacy, or a guarantee of certain areas or zones of privacy does exist under the Constitution. . . .”  Moreover, this “right of privacy . . . is broad enough to encompass a woman’s decision whether or not to terminate her pregnancy.”  That a state was intruding upon a woman’s right to privacy when it prohibited elective abortions in early stages of pregnancies was apparently clear enough to Blackmun and his majority.

It me be supposed that the prohibitions against the taking of life without due process of law would have brought the Supreme Court down on the side of the state laws prohibiting abortion.  But no, according to Blackmun’s view, this matter of whether or not an unborn infant was such a “life,” entitled to constitutional protection, was too muddled to decide.  Blackmun wrote, “We need not resolve the difficult question of when life begins.  When those trained in the respective disciplines of medicine, Philosophy, and theology are unable to arrive at any consensus, the judiciary at this point in the development of man’s knowledge, is not is a position to speculate as to the answer.”  Instead of tackling head-on the issue of when life begins, Blackmun retreated to a doctrine of stages of the development of the embryo.  These were divided into three, with each corresponding period of pregnancy labeled as a “trimester.”  During the first “trimester,” the Supreme Court solemnly announced, the state could not interfere with the “right” of the female to abort her child-in-embryo.  This “right” extended through the second “trimester” as well, though the state might do such things  prescribe who might perform abortions.  During the third “trimester” a state was free to prohibit abortions.  The distinction the Court relied on was that after the sixth month, the infant could frequently survive if separated from his or her mother. . . . 

The propagandized and indoctrinated American people—taught to believe that every utterance of the Supreme Court was the “law of the land”—were slow to mobilize against this newest assault upon their ways.  Nor did they have any ready means at hand to state their horror and to deal with the perpetrators of it.  The liberal-dominated media accepted the decision as another victory for women’s rights.  A further decision in 1976 made this aspect of it decision even clearer.  The Court held “that states could not require either the consent of the husband, or—if the woman was an unmarried minor—the consent of her parents, as a condition for terminating pregnancy in the first trimester.”  In short, any child who became pregnant could dispose of it as she chose during the early months.  Liberals generally tried to keep such debate over the abortion issue as occurred publicly in the austere framework of “women’s rights,” and lectured opponents against introduction emotion.  Even so, resistance to elective abortion has become increasingly vocal over the years, and there is good reason to expect that it will eventually bear fruit in legal changes.

Clarence B. Carson, A Basic History of the United States, Volume 5: The Welfare State 1929-1985, pg.293-294

Friday, May 5, 2017

Commercial Surrogate Motherhood

Media portrayals of surrogacy feature beaming parents and adorable babies, hiding the blatant class exploitation and profiteering, the commodification of women and children, and the serious, even life-threatening health risks to women who sell their eggs or rent their bodies as surrogates. The New York Times, for example, published a marketing article on surrogacy and placed it in the Fashion & Style section of the paper, as if children were must-have accessories for narcissistic elites. Drawing on patriarchal stereotypes, surrogates are presented as selfless, giving women who exist only to be of service to others.

In reality, commercial surrogacy is a predatory, profit-driven industry that preys on marginalized women, creating a breeder class for the wealthy, be they heterosexual or homosexual. It subjects women to life-threatening health risks to produce custom-made children and children being intentionally severed from genetic and biological sources of identity—human rights be damned. In essence, it is the ultimate manifestation of the American neoliberal project of capitalist commodification of human life to create profit and fulfill the narcissistic desires of an entitled elite.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Are You Afraid of the Light?

We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark; the real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light.

Plato, cited by Alvin J. Schmidt, “The American Muhammad: Joseph Smith, Founder of Mormonism,” pg. 247

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Read a Book — Drop the TV

A student’s freedom to read is nor seriously injured by someone’s banning [of] a book on Long Island or in Anaheim or anyplace else….  Television clearly does impair the student’s freedom to read, and it does so with innocent hands, so to speak.  Television does not ban book, it simply displaces them.

Neil Postman

Monday, May 1, 2017

How Genocide Begins with Groupthink

Perhaps most important to a genocidal plan is neutralizing any possible support for the victims. The Ottoman government maintained a well-coordinated propaganda campaign that vilified the Armenians in the eyes of their Turkish neighbors. In like manner, the Jews were demonized among their neighbors in Nazi Germany.

This sort of thing happens in all mass killings, including those done for reasons other than ethnicity. For example, in Stalinist Russia, several million peasant farmers in the Ukraine were deliberately starved to death in the winter of 1932-33 in what is known as the Holodomor. Soviet propaganda demonized these people, known as “kulaks,” as enemies of the people because they resisted the forced collectivization of agriculture, i.e., the confiscation of their farms. In Rwanda, Hutu propaganda vilified and scapegoated the Tutsis, often through radio, priming the popular mindset for the mass slaughter of 800,000 Tutsis during a 100-day period in 1994. The list of “final solutions” goes on and on.

Information warfare through a centrally controlled media is key to turning neighbor against neighbor. It plays a huge role in caricaturing perceived enemies and growing an us-versus-them mindset. In short, propaganda that psychologically manipulates a population is key to laying the groundwork for extreme social polarization, and ultimately for genocide.

This sort of propaganda thrives on ignorance and dissipates under conditions of social trust and general goodwill. This is why free speech and freedom of expression are not negotiable to any free society.

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Conservative Ideology

Conservatives generally favor not only the private ownership of personal property but also of the means of production.  Some refer to such a system as capitalism, though they are using Marxist terminology when they do so.  Generally speaking, they believe that property justly acquired belongs to the owner by right.  If they subscribe to the natural law-nature rights philosophy—not all conservatives do—, they believed that private property is a natural right.  Conservatives usually do not subscribe to the current doctrine of “human rights” because it is a phrase contrived to leave property rights out of the definition of rights.  Conservatives favor freedom of enterprise, though they differ among themselves as to the extent to which it should prevail.  They generally tend to oppose both government intervention in enterprise by regulation and control or government engaging in economic undertakings.  They tend to favor a free market, oppose the exclusion of foreigners from the American market or the granting of monopolies by government.  They differ considerably over the desirability of “antitrust” legislation, but it has bee in effect for so long that it rarely comes up as an issue.

As a rule, conservatives are constitutionalists.  That is, they believe in limited government.  They hold that government is a dangerous instrument, and that it is necessary  to take measures to contain and restrict it.  The American approach to that has been by having written constitutions.  These written constitutions are a contract between the governors and the governed.  Generally, conservatives favor a government of laws and not of men, and that the law for the United States government is the United States Constitution.  Conservatives do not accept out of hand the notion that the Constitution is what the courts say it is, since it is a written document.  They differ somewhat over the extent to which they would accept the view that a written constitution can properly be changed by judicial construction.  Traditionalists, who may be in the Catholic or English tradition, would tend to attach greater significance to court precedents than do conservatives in the Protestant tradition.  The latter tend to view a written constitution as fixed until it is amended by the regular and prescribed process.

Conservatives tend to be individualists.  If the sole issue were the individual versus the collective, as in collectivism, they would be almost invariably individualists.  They accept the primacy of the individual, his first ness and vastness, though most believe that in regard to the rights of the individual these are bounded by the necessities of living in society and of cooperation with others.

Conservatives tend to have the greatest respect and attachment for those organizations and institutions nearest at hand to the individual: the family, the church, the local community, the neighborhood school, the local government, as well as customs, traditions, and ways of doing things rooted in locales and regions.  Not all conservatives, or those who have some affinity for conservatism, will subscribe to this hierarchy of values.  Libertarians and rationalists (those who propose to be governed by reason alone) generally do not.

As a rule, conservatives are not revolutionists, do not favor radical and disruptive change, are not utopians, tend to believe, with Jefferson, that abuses are to be tolerated as long as they are bearable, are not relativists, and tend to believe that in the midst of change there are things that endure or are eternal.  They tend to focus upon the fixities, the unchanging, the underlying order, in contrast to thoroughgoing evolutionists.  They are more favorably disposed toward order, tradition, and authority, to the nature of things, than are Liberals and the like.

Clarence B. Carson, A Basic History of the United States, Volume 5: The Welfare State 1929-1985, pg.287-289

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Study History to Avoid Genocide

Humans are very susceptible to groupthink, ignorance, propaganda, agitation, and psychological manipulation that weakens their resolve. People are also often all too eager to blame their own problems on convenient scapegoats. These human flaws clarify why “Never forget” is the cry associated with the Holocaust and all crimes against humanity.

This is why everybody must respect the study of history. After all, studying history is about remembering. It’s about learning from experience, which is why we must emphatically reject any attempt to water down the accurate teaching and study of history.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Legislating Morality IS a Necessity For Liberty

Liberty is effectively free will, minus the right to infringe on others’ rights. It’s the sole conduit between your life and your pursuit of happiness. Embedded with an inherent moral good, it’s the single instance in our founding principles that actually “imposes” morality, and it does so not purposefully but incidentally. Virtually every other law we have, as noted, is about protecting your rights.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

The Inevitable Results of Collectivist Ideas

The horrors of Communism and Nazism were not simply the consequences of evil men coming to power; they were the precise results that followed from the concentration of power to impose collectivist ideas.

Clarence B. Carson, A Basic History of the United States, Volume 5: The Welfare State 1929-1985, pg.267

Saturday, April 22, 2017

When Education is Secularized

If, for example, we secularize education, which we have done, of course, we cut ourselves loose from the ground of all truth.  If we no longer respect the past, do not honor and in some manner revere it, we will trample all that is received from it and hate ourselves.

Clarence B. Carson, A Basic History of the United States, Volume 5: The Welfare State 1929-1985, pg.267

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Assault on American Civilization

The rebellion which rose to a peak here and there and over and over during the period from 1964 to the early 1970s was nothing else than an ongoing assault on American civilization.  The most dramatic episodes in this assault were Black riots in cities and student takeover attempts of universities.  But the assault had many facets, ranging from the raucous noise of hard rock to pornographic movies to the obscenities that now became rampant in much discourse to the peddling of sexism in Playboy to the vulgarities of Hustler magazine.  The assault was the new destruction which followed in the wake of the new reconstruction.

Clarence B. Carson, A Basic History of the United States, Volume 5: The Welfare State 1929-1985, pg.247

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

SCOTUS vs the Constitution

The high standing of the Supreme Court rests on its position as the court of last resort in defending the Constitution.  The respect in which the Constitution has been held is the foundation of the Court’s authority.  To the extent that the high court deviates from the written Constitution and relies on its own assertions to that same extent it is undermining the base of its authority.  . . . Pronouncements by the Court without Constitutional backing have no popular base.

To the extent that the Supreme Court rules by its own will, it is rule by an oligarchy.  That is, it is a rule by a few men—nine to be exact—over the rest.  That the court had become exactly that was frequently charged in the 1960s.  Indeed, one writer reasoned, with sound logic, that “If it is true that a construction of the Constitution by the Supreme Court . . . is . . . ‘the law of the land’ . . . ; if it is true that a ‘constitutional right’ can come into being merely on the Court’s say . . . , then, where in all candor, are we?  If a judicial interpretation of the Constitution is, by definition, the Constitution, why then we are in the grips of judicial despotism!  That is the meaning of despotism.  An unchallengeable authority can be benign, or malevolent, but it is a despotism if the rest of the commonwealth has not practical alternative to succumbing to its will.”

Clarence B. Carson, A Basic History of the United States, Volume 5: The Welfare State 1929-1985, pg.233-234

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Do Not Usurp the Constitution

If in the opinion of the people the distribution or modification of the constitutional powers be in any particular wrong, let it be corrected by an amendment in the way which the Constitution designates.  But let there be no change by usurpation; for though this in one instance may be the instrument of good, it is the customary weapon by which free governments are destroyed.  The precedent must always greatly over-balance in permanent evil any transient or partial benefit which the use can at any time yield.

George Washington.  Cited by  Clarence B. Carson, A Basic History of the United States, Volume 5: The Welfare State 1929-1985, pg.232

Saturday, April 15, 2017

The Courts Should NOT Add to the Constitution

This Court, limited in function . . . , does not serve its high purpose when it exceeds its authority, even to satisfy justified impatience with the slow workings of the political process.  For when, in the name of constitutional interpretation, the Court adds something to the Constitution that was deliberately excluded from it, the Court in reality substitutes its view of what should be so for the amending process.

Justice John M. Harlan, Dissent in Reynolds v. Sims, 1964

Friday, April 14, 2017

Diversity - The Emperor Has No Clothes

In the beginning was Diversity.  And the Diversity was with God, and the Diversity was God. Without Diversity was nothing made that was made.  And it came to pass that nasty old “orthodox” people narrowed down diversity and finally squeezed it out, dismissing it as heresy. But in the fullness of time (which is of course our time), Diversity rose up and smote orthodoxy hip and thigh. Now, praise be, the only heresy is orthodoxy. As widely and as unthinkingly accepted as this reconstruction is, it is historical nonsense: the emperor has no clothes.

D. A. Carson, Research Professor of New Testament, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Check Your Worldview

A worldview that says human life has no inherent value of dignity will never lead to utopia, no matter how advanced the tools and gadgets. . . .  Utopianism linked to power leads to gulags and death camps.

Nancy Pearcey

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

The Harm to Children of Divorce

When we consider the child who is the fruit of marriage, we may also come to realize the enormous seriousness of divorce.  It is fairly common to hear people say in connection with divorce that they fear especially for the children.  This statement, though it may ordinarily refer only to the disruption and uncertainty which divorce brings to the life of a child, may also point to an even deeper reality.  If the child is the sign of the unity—indeed more, the incarnation of the unity—of this man and woman who now propose to rupture their oneness, then of course we must fear for the child.  What event could be more calculated to disturb the child at the very center of his personal identity?  Parents are not merely a cause and children an effect which can easily be separated.  Here again we must remember that our commitments in the flesh are personal commitments.  The child’s personhood, his sense of identity is involved.  To tear the marriage asunder is in some sense to do the same to the child.

Human Sexuality:  A Theological Perspective.  A Report of the Commission on Theology and Church Relations of the Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod, as prepared by its Social Concerns Committee, September 1981, pg. 25-26

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Nature Abhors a Religious Vacuum

There was a fallacy in thinking that religion could be removed from our schools.  The Left claimed that the result would be a benign neutrality.  They have been proven mistaken.  Since nature abhors a vacuum, the religions of moral relativism and secular humanism have simply replaced the religions that were expelled.

Rabbi Daniel Lapin, "America's Real War," pg.342

Monday, April 10, 2017

Government Supports Error

It is error alone which needs the support of government. Truth can stand by itself. Subject opinion to coercion: whom will you make your inquisitors?

Thomas Jefferson (1781)

Sunday, April 9, 2017

The New Plantation

Uncle Sam has developed a sophisticated poverty plantation, operated by a federal government, overseen by bureaucrats, protected by media elite, and financed by the taxpayers.  The only difference between this plantation and the slave plantations of the antebellum South is perception.

If anyone works their way off of the plantation and denounces it, they are called “uppity” or “sellout” or even “Uncle Tom.”  Instead of a physical beating, defectors are ostracized in the public forum.

Star Parker

Saturday, April 8, 2017

The New Deal Extended the Depression

The New Deal programs did not end the Great Depression; they delayed recovery and prolonged it.  Economically, there is but one route to prosperity, and that is through freedom of enterprise, productivity, and competition.  The New Deal hampered enterprise and competition.  Production was discourage by such devices as acreage allotments for farmers, shorter hours of work in industry and reducing then number of people in the labor force.  Enterprise was hampered by diverting capital from private hands and spending it for public employment and public enterprises.  The proof of the pudding came in the period 1937-1939, when in the midst of prolonged depression, the depression deepened.  The stock market crashed again in 1937, though not so loudly.  Unemployment rose, until in the course of 1938 it reached the highs of 1933, despite such programs as WPA and the CCC.  According to some surveys, it reached 11 million in this period.  Higher wages resulting from government encouraged unionization and wages and hours legislation contributed to the deepening depression.

To show how the New Deal programs prolonged depression and worsened the situation, it may be helpful to examine a little more closely the fate of the farmers.  These measures were often supposed to save the family farm and even increase the number of people in farming.  If anything, they worked the other way.  About 25 per cent of the population lived on farms in 1933; this had fallen to 23 per cent in 1940 and to 15 per cent in 1950, when most of the programs were still in effect.  As for tenant and sharecroppers, who were supposed to be special objects of consideration, the comments of two historians are in order.  One says, “The AAA brought benefits to almost all commercial farmers.  But in limiting acreage and providing the strongest possible incentive for more efficient land use, and thus for better technology, it forced sharecroppers off the land and worsened the plight of farm laborers.”  Another says, “New Deal policies made matters worse.  The AAA’s reduction of cotton acreage drove the tenant and the cropper from the land. . . .”  They prolonged the agony of leaving the farm, with the usually small government checks, but by limiting acreage to money crops they sealed the fate of many farms.

The New Deal concentrated much attention on raising wages and farm prices.  To foster this, it adopted monetary and fiscal policies which brought in later years the scourge of inflation, the destruction of savings, and a society bent on somehow holding on to a portion of what has been earned.  The long-term result to this date [October 1986] has been the progressive destruction of the dollar.  That, too, is a legacy of the New Deal.

Clarence B. Carson, A Basic History of the United States, Volume 5: The Welfare State 1929-1985, pg.93-94

Friday, April 7, 2017

Unemployment Insurance?

If extended unemployment be accepted as the norm for a considerable portion of the population, it makes sense to insure against this hazard.  Indeed, prudent people have long believed it wise to set something aside against a “rainy day,” i.e., against some unfavorable circumstance beyond their control.  When government undertakes such a program, it takes over at least a portion of the responsibility which before that fell upon the individual, family, or, perhaps, the local community or neighbors.  From an economic point of view, government provided unemployment compensation amounts to paying people not to work.  It is a highly uneconomic, or diseconomic, practice.  This is made more impractical, if that is possible, by taking the contribution to the program from the employer and placing no penalty upon the worker while he receives the compensation.  The only check on it is that the compensation must end after a specified period of time.

Clarence B. Carson, A Basic History of the United States, Volume 5: The Welfare State 1929-1985, pg.78

Thursday, April 6, 2017

We Need Social Censure

How did we once maintain a society that was a model of prosperity, tranquility, and politeness?  Part of the answer is that, as a God-fearing nation, we employed several fundamental moral weapons which we have now become too timid, or too politically correct, to use.  These weapons include disapproval, ostracism, and other sanctions.

Let’s see how such weapons would relate to the phenomenon of illegitimacy.  Thirty-five years ago [53 now], the unmarried teenage girl who became pregnant was sent away to have the baby.  The shame she brought on herself and her family was deep and lasting.  In addition, the bastard child carried the disgrace throughout his life, with diminished career and marriage prospects.  As we approach the end of the millennium [the book is copyright 1999], our enlightened generation tends to throw up our hands in horror at the thought that ostracism and moral censure should be put to such barbaric use.  I would argue to the contrary, on three grounds.  First, I suggest that the traditional use of ostracism and censure educated society on the proper ties between people, God, and community, while the abandonment of these tools has led to rampant and dangerous individualism.  Second, I maintain that proper and judicious use of social sanctions prevents far more problems and misery than it creates, as do other forms of punishment.  Finally, I argue that no community can succeed without ostracism and censure. . . .

The point of social sanctions, like the point of any other deterrence mechanism, is not to ruin lives but to preserve the common welfare.  Anyone urging the return of such sanctions hopes that their very presence will make the need for their use quite rare.  Back in the 1950s, the number of pregnant schoolgirls who were stigmatized was tiny, and so was the rate of illegitimacy.  The number of vagrants who were harassed out of respectable neighborhoods was minute, and the streets were safe and clean.

The tool of ostracism and social censure was used most effectively to limit both drunken driving and cigarette smoking.  In both cases it was not considered sufficient to merely penalize the actions; it was also necessary to brand those who engaged in those behaviors.  As a society, we are obviously quite comfortable employing social disapproval as a tool for social improvement.  We are just a little queasy about utilizing these undoubtedly effective tools for moral ends.

Rabbi Daniel Lapin, "America's Real War," pg.255-256

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Which Is Really Greed?

If workers struggle for higher wages, this is hailed as “social gains”; if businessmen struggle for higher profits, this is damned as “selfish greed.”

Ayn Rand

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Teach a Man to Fish?

I am for doing good to the poor, but I differ in opinion of the means.  I think the best way of doing good to the poor is not making them easy in poverty, but leading or driving them out of it.  In my youth I traveled much, and I observed in different countries, that the more public provisions were made for the poor, the less they provided for themselves, and of course became poorer.  And, on the contrary, the less was done for them, the more they did for themselves, and became richer.

Benjamin Franklin

Monday, April 3, 2017

Deception By Investment

The blinding of a person’s will happens when he or she has fully invested themselves into something which turns out to be a terrible mistake. Not willing to accept that they have fully invested themselves in an egregious error blinds them from the reality of it. They simply will the error to be true. We see this all the time in cult interaction. You can prove to a person that he has been deceived, that he is believing and living a lie, and you may even see the distress this information is causing him, yet he sets his face, his will, and simply refuses to “understand” what you are saying.

Don and Joy Veinot, “Invested

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Laws Empowering Unions

It may not be immediately clear why an act empowering labor unions would be for the redistribution of wealth.  Granted, it does not exactly fall under the category of levying either a direct or indirect tax.  But so far as labor unions succeed in getting higher compensation for their members, a redistribution of wealth takes place, whether from employers to employees or ultimately from the higher prices that consumers may pay for the union produced goods.  Thus, a redistribution of wealth is at least contemplated when labor unions are empowered by the government.

Clarence B. Carson, A Basic History of the United States, Volume 5: The Welfare State 1929-1985, pg.75

Friday, March 31, 2017

The Takeover of Humanism

Humanism denies absolute truth and biblical values.  Thus, there is no right or wrong.  Students are to accept relative answers based on personal needs. Public school literature now teaches children to become better citizens in a new world order.  Country, family, and God are no longer goals to be achieved, but instead they are seen as causes for bigotry, narrow-mindedness, prejudice, and intolerance.  The humanist teaches our children new thought patterns that meet the goals of the emerging elitist class who will equip society for global governance.

During the past one hundred years, humanism has grown bolder in its attack against the founding fathers of our nation. In the field of public education more schools have closed their doors to the Bible.  In many instances, teachers are prohibited from encouraging students to follow the teachings of Christ.  Ironically, it is easier to teach the Koran, the writings of Buddha, or Yoga than Christianity.  Fewer teachers are familiar with the exhortations of the men who established our nation; and as a result, relativism has inflicted great harm to a once great nations, as well as to a once vibrant Christian evangelical movement.

Paul Smith, The New Evangelicalism: The New World Order.  Cited in The Berean Call, March 2017

Thursday, March 30, 2017

A Stay-at-Home Mom is NOT Wasting Talent

If a woman professionally arranges flowers, or cooks fine Italian meals, or plays violin for an orchestra, or gives singing lessons, she will be praised for engaging her gifts and “making something of herself,” even if she returns home from her day’s labors and is unwilling or unable to care for her children. But if a woman “well versed in all of the household arts” does all of these things for those whom she loves and cares about the most, “we shake our heads and say that she has wasted her talents” by staying at home.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Political Correctness Destroying Education

As it is, our schools give us a “multicultural” education that is just a cultural solvent and a cover for the stringent imposition of a rigid and oppressive orthodoxy. Public schools avoid religious questions at the cost of censoring the most human questions. The natural impulse for patriotism is snuffed out by self-righteous condemnation of our grandparents and the figures of the past. The stories composing our history are neglected in favor of whatever creed the child’s primary educators—the state—happen to favor. Our schools have become a “dead loss.”  

Higher education is no better off. In some cases, it is much worse. There, political correctness and identity politics dominate discourse. Learning is no more. … Your average state university is an expensive program in aggressive miseducation, and most Catholic universities are not much different.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

The Insistence On Unreality Destroys Culture

The most impressive obstacle to restoration of culture is the persistent insistence that unreality is real: that boys can be girls, that men and women are the same, that the unborn child is not a person, that divorce is okay for ourselves and the kids, that literature (especially poetry) and culture are fungible subjects of inquiry, and so on. …

The necessary remedy for such cant and for the political paradigms and correctness that bolster it is a total rejection of their terms and conditions … We must learn anew to read and speak, to sing and work and dance and pray, and to build and cherish beautiful things.

Monday, March 27, 2017

Results of Bad Anthropology

Bad anthropology has given us natural rights without foundations or directions—a freedom of indifference but not for excellence. Bad anthropology has debased modern man’s mind so that it is unable to distinguish liberty from license, rendering man unable to think about which desires should be acted on, which preferences should be satisfied. Bad anthropology has sought to liberate man from the very communities where he finds meaning and purpose, alienating man from work, from family, and from God.

The result is a working class without the values and virtues to flourish in the condition of freedom and a ruling class more devoted to a global community of elites than to its own communities. The result is a working class increasingly isolated from meaningful relationships and thus more anxious about its future in an age of economic uncertainty and a ruling class increasingly isolated from its working-class neighbors and thus unaware of their anxieties. The result is a nation—both working class and ruling class—that increasingly lacks a transcendent orientation and thus fails to have even a decent humanistic vision.

If we do not have God for a Father, we will not see our fellow man as our brother. If we are not made in the image and likeness of God, we will not treat every life as created equal and endowed with unalienable rights—indeed, we will view our neighbors as random, meaningless cosmic dust that gets in our way.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Family vs Government

The family is a natural society with its own nature and integrity. Because of the natural reality of the family, we have certain obligations. If you are a husband or a wife, you have certain duties to your spouse. If you are a parent, you have certain duties to your children, regardless of whether or not you ever chose them. And children, not Social Security administrators, have duties to their parents, especially as they age. It is the natural reality of father and child, mother and child, that creates the relationship of authority and responsibility.

This places limits on what the government can do. The government is not free to recreate the family. The government is not free to usurp the authority of parents over the education of their children or adult children over the care of their elderly parents.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

The REASON for Real Marriage

Marriage exists to bring a man and a woman together as husband and wife to be father and mother to any children their union produces. Marriage benefits everyone because separating the bearing and rearing of children from marriage burdens innocent bystanders; not just children, but the whole community. Without healthy marriages, the community must step in to provide more directly for the children’s well-being and upbringing.  By encouraging the norms of marriage—monogamy, sexual exclusivity, and permanence—the state strengthens civil society  and reduces its own role.

Government has always recognized marriage—always understood as the union of a man and a woman—because marriage benefits society in a way that no other relationship or institution does.  Marriage is society’s least restrictive means of ensuring the well-being of children.  State recognition of marriage protects children by encouraging men and women to commit to each other and take responsibility for their children.

The future of this country depends on the future of marriage, and the future of marriage depends on citizens’ understanding what it is and why it matters and demanding that government policies support, not undermine true marriage.

Ryan T. Anderson, “Truth Overruled: The Future of Marriage and Religious Freedom,” pg.207

Friday, March 24, 2017

Enemies of the People

The two enemies of the people are criminals and government, so let us tie the second down with the chains of the Constitution so the second will not become the legalized version of the first.

Thomas Jefferson

Thursday, March 23, 2017

The Democratic Party Is Destructive

The Democratic party cultivates black anger at America, victimhood, group grievance and dependency on government.  In almost every area of life, the better things are, the worse it is for the Democratic party.  The Democratic party has become a wholly destructive force in this country.  . . . If you vote for any Democrat, you contribute to the damage.

Dennis Prager

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Freedom Needs Education

The secret of Freedom lies in educating people, whereas the secret of tyranny is in keeping them ignorant.

Maximilien Robespierre

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

All Freedoms Begin With Free Economy

A man’s right to work as he will, to spend what he earns, to own property, to have the state as servant and not as master, they are the essence of a free economy, and on that freedom all our other freedoms depend.

Margaret Thatcher

Monday, March 20, 2017

Cultural Results of Anti-God Agenda

We have raised a generation unaware of God’s presence and its potency as an aid to self-monitoring. What might happen, for example, if a gang member were to reject bad influence with a paraphrase of Joseph’s words: “God is watching and would not want me to go with you.”  (Actually, if more of us were to simply think this sentiment, what impact might that have on morality in our society?). ...  

In spite of the fact that many studies show considerably less criminal activity among religiously involved families, the anti-god theoreticians feel that the cure is worse than the disease.  Under no circumstances can we encourage religion, and we must try to remove it from organizations such as Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts (or at least remove these organizations from our schools).  Most ordinary citizens would disagree.  The most serious public policy consequence of this principle is that...there can never be enough policemen. Once each person’s internal monitoring system has been disconnected, everyone needs to be watched all the time. …

Rabbi Daniel Lapin, "America's Real War," pg.254

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Discernment In Choosing a Wife

My recommendation to any young man discerning marriage: ask your prospective bride how she feels about modern feminism. If she laughs at you, much as my wife would, you’ve got yourself a keeper. If she takes the opportunity to go on a 18-minute rant about the imaginary “gender wage gap” and the importance of “reproductive rights,” run away as fast as your feet will carry you. My friend, you just dodged a bullet. Praise Jesus.

Saturday, March 18, 2017

The Government Gives - And It Takes

A government big enough to give you everything you want is a government big enough to take from you everything you have.

Gerald Ford

Friday, March 17, 2017

Public Schools and Gender Ideology

The belief that one’s internal sense of self determines maleness or femaleness and that subjective feelings take precedence over an objective physical reality constitutes a severing of mind from body. Our sex is who we are: it can’t be amputated from our body like a limb. But the true believers in gender ideology are hard at work, pulling in converts to this gnostic worldview that shuns the material that we humans are made of: the body. You can be assured that an ideology like this will, to use Pope Francis’s words, lead to the “annihilation of man” in our culture, in the law, and in the lives of those who fall prey to the tenets of this weaponized “civil rights” movement.

What worries me most is that schools across the country are quashing debate, abandoning academic excellence, and reducing themselves to pawns in a political movement whose claims are highly questionable, unscientific, and harmful to children. Public schools have a duty to serve all children, but a school cannot serve children and a totalitarian ideology all at once. . . . 

First, schools will teach children to accept an ideology that is predicated on the lie that biological sex plays second fiddle to a self-proclaimed, subjective gender identity, and that the sex of one’s body is mutable or even irrelevant. This isn’t just an idea that you can tuck away in a unit study or an anti-bullying presentation. It will inevitably find its way into every aspect of a school and make a deep impression on the developing minds of children. For example, girls, under the regressive mandates of anti-bullying and gender inclusion policies, would have to agree to call boys in their locker room “girls,” effectively losing their rights to free speech and to privacy from males. And science—particularly biology—would die a quick death at the hands of a concept that necessarily eradicates observable facts about human sexuality. Gender ideology in the curriculum is a lie enshrined as truth.

Second, institutionalizing gender ideology will require that schools ignore the evidence that it causes real harm to children. You can’t extol the virtues of gender ideology and question its soundness at the same time. By celebrating transgenderism as a valid identity, schools are promoting a body-mind disconnect that may very well bring on the gender dysphoric state they were attempting to prevent. And when the widely accepted “affirmative” medical treatments of gender dysphoria in children are both poorly studied and glaringly injurious, we have nothing to celebrate.