Saturday, March 28, 2009
Missouri is an interesting state in its demographic make-up. There are two very large urban concentrations on either side of the state separated by vast, but well populated, rural areas in the balance. The seat of government (Jefferson City) is located roughly in the center of the state. The cities are home to the usual liberal promoters who gravitate to the large masses of people and the spread out remainder is generally home to those of a more conservative bent.
Our topography, often rough and rocky, is interspersed in some regions with highly fertile land which provides our overall agricultural output with considerable strength. These factors have worked in concert historically to generate a citizenry with a character similar to the state’s icon, the Missouri mule--stubborn. In general, a large portion of the state’s electorate have earned the label of “show-me” by demanding hard evidence of state-wide proposals before acceptance.
Missouri’s constitution provides for some relief from single party dominance in its provision that the governor and his lieutenant need not necessarily be from the same party and may be elected separately. This wise provision, provided by those who are now long absent, furnishes a possible bar to oppressive actions from the governor’s office.
With that background, you may appreciate a recent issue which has raised the hackles on many Missourians regarding a warning issued by our Department of Public Safety. They issued an alert concerning the possibility of militia activity by those persons who can be identified as supporters of third-party actors. Mentioned by name were Ron Paul, Bob Barr, and Chuck Baldwin. The allegations asserted that “domestic militias often subscribed to radical ideologies rooted in Christian views and opposition to immigration, abortion or federal taxes.” It further pointed out that the militia members were unabashed supporters of the second amendment to the Constitution of the United States. The highway patrol was advised that these individuals could be identified by bumper stickers and should be given an extra measure of surveillance.
Fortunately, Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder mounted a protest to this unwarranted activity, (see this article from the Kansas City Star) and the Missouri Information Analysis Center was forced to back away from this ill-advised action. Governor Nixon has apparently distanced himself from any further involvement.
Once again the “show-me” character of the people of Missouri has prevailed but not before the need for constant vigilance has been shown. It is demonstrative of the “trickle-down” of attitudes clearly offered by the new administration in Washington which threaten the liberties of every American. Protection of our freedoms requires an ongoing awareness by every citizen regardless of station.
In His abiding love,
Lawrence County, MO
Posted by One of the Moons at 6:37 PM
Friday, March 27, 2009
This came in the mail from a dear and trusted friend. Those of us who have lost a child can appreciate his pain. Hope you take a minute to read this…God Bless:
“I guess our national leaders didn't expect this, hmm? On Thursday, Darrell Scott, the father of Rachel Scott, a victim of the Columbine High School shootings in Littleton, Colorado, was invited to address the House Judiciary Committee's subcommittee. What he said to our national leaders during this special session of Congress was painfully truthful.They were not prepared for what he was to say, nor was it received well. It needs to be heard by every parent, every teacher, every politician, every sociologist, every psychologist, and every so-called expert!
These courageous words spoken by Darrell Scott are powerful, penetrating, and deeply personal. There is no doubt that God sent this man as a voice crying in the wilderness. The following is a portion of the transcript:
Since the dawn of creation there has been both good &evil in the hearts of men and women... We all contain the seeds of kindness or the seeds of violence. The death of my wonderful daughter, Rachel Joy Scott, and the deaths of that heroic teacher, and the other eleven children who died must not be in vain. Their blood cries out f or answers.
The first recorded act of violence was when Cain slew his brother Abel out in the field. The villain was not the club he used. Neither was it the NCA, the National Club Association. The true killer was Cain, and the reason for the murder could only be found in Cain's heart.
In the days that followed the Columbine tragedy, I was amazed at how quickly fingers began to be pointed at groups such as the NRA. I am not a member of the NRA. I am not a hunter. I do not even own a gun. I am not here to represent or defend the NRA - because I don't believe that they are responsible for my daughter's death. Therefore I do not believe that they need to be defended. If I believed they had anything to do with Rachel's murder I would be their strongest opponent. I am here today to declare that Columbine was not just a tragedy -- it was a spiritual event that should be forcing us to look at where the real blame lies! Much of the blame lies here in this room. Much of the blame lies behind the pointing fingers of the accusers themselves. I wrote a poem just four nights ago that expresses my feelings best.
Your laws ignore our deepest needs; Your words are empty air. You've stripped away our heritage, You've outlawed simple prayer. Now gunshots fill our classrooms, And precious children die. You seek for answers everywhere, And ask the question 'Why?' You regulate restrictive laws, Through legislative creed. And yet you fail to understand, That God is what we need! Men and women are three-part beings. We all consist of body, mind, and spirit. When we refuse to acknowledge a third part of our make-up, we create a void that allows evil, prejudice, and hatred to rush in and wreak havoc. Spiritual presences were present within our educational systems for most of our nation's history. Many of our major colleges began as theological seminaries. This is a historical fact. What has happened to us as a nation?
We have refused to honor God, and in so doing, we open the doors to hatred and violence. And when something as terrible as Columbine's tragedy occurs -- politicians immediately look for a scapegoat such as the NRA. They immediately seek to pass more restrictive laws that contribute to erode away our personal and private liberties. We do not need more restrictive laws. Eric and Dylan would not have been stopped by metal detectors. No amount of gun laws can stop someone who spends months planning this type of massacre. The real villain lies within our own hearts.
As my son Craig lay under that table in the school library and saw his two friends murdered before his very eyes, he did not hesitate to pray in school. I defy any law or politician to deny him that right! I challenge every young person in America, and around the world, to realize that on April 20, 1999, at Columbine High School prayer was brought back to our schools. Do not let the many prayers offered by those students be in vain. Dare to move into the new millennium with a sacred disregard for legislation that violates your God-given right to communicate with Him.
To those of you who would point your finger at the NRA -- I give to you a sincere challenge. Dare to examine your own heart before casting the first stone! My daughter's death will not be in vain! The young people of this country will not allow that to happen!"
Thank you Mr. Scott.
In His abiding love,
Posted by One of the Moons at 11:01 AM
Thursday, March 26, 2009
Here continues the sharing of Hartley’s testimonies:
“Over the last fifty years I have accumulated over three hours of testimony, one on one, with the Holy Spirit. Where in the whole world would you think testimony would be more welcome than amongst Christians, and especially the RLDS who profess, truly, their church was initiated through Revelation? These are testimonies that confirm and were given to strengthen and support that belief. Not so! They are welcome only as long as it is what they want to hear: as long as no changes in our life style are required. This attitude has stunted God’s purposes in our personal hopes and times.
I came home around three o’clock in the afternoon feeling very sad about the condition of Christ’s Church. It seemed to me I was being forced to witness its downfall. I sat in my living room until ten thirty at night, no lights, no TV, just sitting, reflecting. I began to get up and make myself ready for bed when I found a heavenly messenger standing before me.
We went off to the West; we traveled through ink black darkness. I sensed we were going over cities and towns, highway with cars, but there was no light showing from below or above. We traveled a great distance until off in the distance I saw a little light. It was so welcoming I desired to go there. We stopped in front of the light; it looked like a cane stuck in the ground with a little dim light about the size of a tennis ball balanced on top. It stood approximately five feet high.
Out of the darkness a man came and stood by the light, bent over and pulled the light to his cheek and he smiled. He had a flat topped hat with a wide brim, his jacket had over stuffed shoulders, the jacket extended below his knees. A silver chain came from under his jacket and looped down to his shoes and back up. When he saw me look at the chain, he pulled on it and held it near the light. There was a gold key on the end which he spun so it passed the light and glittered. His smile broadened.
I asked the messenger, 'What is this?'
He replied, 'This represents the Lord’s priesthood. They have the key to the kingdom of Heaven. They will not use it. Nor will they let anyone else use it.'
The Heavenly Messenger took me off again into a Westerly direction until we came to a great building. I could not tell how tall it was because of the darkness. The main floor was well lit and I saw a Ball going on.. There was a promenade or patio all around the building, and there were glass doors and windows. I could clearly see inside.
The men were in tuxedos and the ladies had long gowns, every one was dressed immaculately. The music was nice. Soon a glass door opened and a couple came out to enjoy the fresh air. One turned to the other, and with a sigh said ‘we must go back.’ The other answered and said, 'yes, we must go back.’ Every couple that came out for their breath of fresh air said the same thing. 'We must go back.'
After a time a man came out of the darkness dressed in animal skins and had a slain lamb hanging over one arm. He came into the perimeter of the light, laid the lamb down on the grass, and as it touched to grass it was cooked.
He lifted his hands to his mouth and shouted, 'Oh ye inhabitants of the earth, come, come, I have a feast for you, come, come.' All the glass doors opened, all the people came out on the patio and looked. He again invited them to come and feast on the lamb.
The people were reluctant to go on the grass; it might spoil the polish on their shoes or spoil their clothes. Finally two men went and sat in the grass next to the man in animal skins. They pulled the fur apart and reached in and took of the lamb. Two ladies thought they would go and take of the lamb. They would not sit down on the grass. One reached in and pulled out some meat and saw a hair on it and threw it down in disgust and returned to the patio. The other took some meat and took a bite and [when] some juice fell on her dress, she too got angry and returned to the patio.
It became obvious to me that some of the men on the patio desired to become leaders of the people. They carefully studied the attitude of the people and when they saw their reluctance to go on the grass they shouted in a loud voice, 'come back into the building and we will prepare a feast you can truly eat.' All the people went back into the building except those two and the man in animal skins.
After a time the music began to get louder and faster, so loud and fast it was no longer enjoyable. Soon the music was unbearable, loud, and sounded without any purpose except to be hurtful. Those who would be the leaders of the people, to divert them from the noise, called them back out onto the patio.
The leaders wanted the people to go and seize those who were eating of the lamb and bring them into the building, but the people were reluctant to walk on the grass. This angered the leaders and they became furious. I saw murder build up in the hearts of those who would be the leaders and I began to tremble.
Suddenly I saw a light begin to pierce the darkness from above, it swirled around and a white cloud appeared. It opened and I heard the voice of the Father, He said, 'Ye who have been faithful, come ye, enter into my rest.'
I had never been in the presence of such power; every particle of my being wanted to fall prostrate on the ground, but my mind said ‘I want to see, I want to see.’ I saw the man in animal skins and the two who ate of the lamb ascend into the opening in the heavens. The would be leaders of the people laughed almost insanely, trying to make people think it was a nonevent.
The vision ended.. In the last few years I have attended various denominations, the music I heard in them, drums, steel guitars, and trumpets was equal to that which I heard in the great building just before the heavens opened. The music I hear on TV during the commercials, during travelogues, designed to penetrate to the carnal self, to disturb the peace and tranquil soul. [sic] It seeks to motivate by use of demonic insistence and I do not find rest.
Compare that kind of music to the words of a Hymn I remember, 'A calm and gentle quiet reigns tonight, there is not a frown upon a single brow, each heart is filled with strange delight, as peace spreads gently over us now.' Then there was something about contending power etc.
Each of us has been given power to rule, to rule our own lives and the power to search for those things that please us; or please our Heavenly Father. They are not always the same. Sometimes we have to walk across the grass. God Bless,
Hartley Stanbridge, Elder”
Please look forward to continuing this insightful view of these testimonies. We shall attempt to provide one every Thursday as a continuing feature.
In His abiding love,
Posted by One of the Moons at 8:06 AM
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Just for the sake of comparison, let’s take a quick look at the math on a couple of current issues. The highly protested AIG bonuses come to roughly $167,000,000 and have occupied center stage for over a week. Everyone in congress has had his moment in the limelight to bloviate and fuel the fires of class envy. It is a subject which has occupied the press to the exclusion of issues of actual importance. Since it has been out of the glare of public exposure and shielded by the outrage of the bonuses, little attention has been paid to the Obama climate plan. He has it all figured out and presented the bill in advance. It comes to $2.3 trillion.
To attempt to establish the relationship I am going to put the numbers against the left margin so you can see it more plainly:
$2,300,000,000,000 ------- for the costs of the climate change initiative
------ $167,000,000 ------- for the AIG bonuses.
Numerical relationships are most popularly expressed as either a percentage or a fraction. This percentage is expressed as 0.0000726%. For those who see fractions more clearly, it is 1/13,772.
A real life example to illustrate the comparison would involve showing your outrage over the bonuses by participating in a demonstration at the home of an AIG executive and shouting, screaming, and waving threatening placards for a full eight hour day. To achieve an equivalent protest at the White House over the proposed climate change debacle would require the same eight hour expenditure of your time and energy every single day for 113 years!
Now, we go to your local convenience store and top off your gas tank, pick up a bag of chips and a Coke and the tab comes to $19.98. You toss a twenty on the counter and tell the clerk to put the 2 cents in the jar for the next guy. Fundamentally, this is a rounding error. It is also .001% or 1/1000 of the transaction. That means it is 13.8 times more significant than the AIG/climate legislation relationship. You are now free to devote your time to figuring out how to get another twenty.
I would hope this enables you to see that all the hoopla over these bonuses is merely a dodge to abrogate a valid existing contract and accelerate a fictitious class struggle within our population. Having the media consumed by this relatively minor issue offers a smoke screen to hide a far more insidious attack on the public treasury. It also provides a perfect example of a “bloodless coup.” Destroy a country without dropping a bomb or firing a shot; what a concept.
In His abiding love,
Posted by One of the Moons at 10:27 AM
Every once in a while, clarity comes crashing in whether invited or not. To explain this one, let us return to the campaign trail. Do you remember the mainstream media attempting to cover up for Obama when he offered the news that he would be “visiting his fifty-seventh state?” The late night comedians made jokes and thinking people just rolled their eyes in embarrassment. Did anybody ever ask where he came up with that particular number?
I inadvertently stumbled upon it today. The Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) may well be the source of that specific number. It is an outfit which promotes its programs on every continent except North America and the Polar regions. Curiously, their membership includes exactly fifty-seven nations. The Wikipedia link is shown above if you need to be updated on who and what they are.
I believe it was George Stephanopoulos who did the interview where Obama professed to be a Muslim and was corrected by Mr. S., his allegiance becomes increasingly clear. As has been pointed out before, in his “pedigree,” he is closer to Arab (42.75%) than black African (6.25%.) This may explain why he remains content to allow his brother to live in a box in an African slum with an income of $1 per day.
For the hopey-changey Kool-Aid drinkers, these details represent needless carping over meaningless isolated facts drawn together to promote a conspiracy. For those who see the recent actions of our government as precipitating the downfall of the republic, they are more difficult pieces of the puzzle. Some of us see him as a figurehead rather than the brains of that effort.
For further evidence, we would point out the teleprompter problems. If you haven’t noticed that ever present device I recommend the following offering on You Tube. Click on the link which presents an assembly of clips featuring that ubiquitous equipment. Trust me, if he didn’t have it he would be absolutely speechless.. Extemporaneous is not his forte.
As one who has done considerable public speaking and enjoyed many others who are far better and more talented, I have found that the single most important necessity for good delivery is a thorough knowledge of the topic. My personal opinion is that if you require more than a few notes for difficult-to-remember numbers or complicated formations of thought, you are probably either uninformed or ignorant. Just about any damned (and I use the word in its most appropriate sense) fool can read a speech. Over the years I have found that any difficulty I have had with delivery has been a result of straying into an area where I lack expertise and should keep my mouth shut.
Prior to my baptism in the late sixties, I was constantly amazed by the abilities of the men who took the pulpit from neighboring congregations with little formal education or training, who spoke with eloquence and fervor about the Lord and His works. Frequently at a subsequent more social occasion—a church dinner—I found them pleasant but not particularly scholarly. In the pulpit they knew their subject and their outward appearance belied their inner knowledge of their Christ. Their obvious and absolute dedication to their faith served as an inspiration to me and my family to further seek the Lord.
In summation, these are just more pieces of the puzzle. It is my prayer that enough of the public sees what is happening in Washington to take corrective action before the republic is ruined.
In His abiding love,
Posted by One of the Moons at 4:31 AM
Monday, March 23, 2009
God provided another smooth trip to Miami to be with the Saints and listen to elder Lee Reynolds from Maple Grove deliver an excellent sermon. His experiences with the Navajos and the mission have certainly enhanced his view of the Lord’s good works with all men. Our normal numbers were swelled by the presence of many extras in the pews. Mostly younger people; it was enough to fill the hearts of the older members with great joy. The age balance in the congregation is very encouraging.
There’s Got to be a Morning After
One of the advantages of having been a rampaging drunk is the opportunity to appreciate fully the errors of the past and thoroughly enjoy recovery in progress—28+ years now. You may get sick of hearing about it but I rejoice in that God-given boon in my life. The wisdom I have gained from it is not complicated nor is it infallible.
The greatest joy is the realization that I am no longer responsible for running the world since I decided to “let go and let God.” That takes a considerable load off my shoulders. Now I can sit back and watch the addictive behavior of others and comfort myself with the notions that there, but for the grace of God, go I. Addiction takes many forms which don’t necessarily involve pills, smoke, alcohol or other dangerous substances. It is really more of a state of mind which falsely elevates the importance and selfishness of an individual to an unattainable height. We observe this in the power brokers in the congress, behind the desk in the oval office and scattered about in the myriad petty bureaus so ubiquitous in the District of Columbia. I really wish that they would take up booze and drugs and leave the management of my life as an issue to be worked out between me and my higher power.
Like it or not, many in high places have become addicted to the rush accompanying their pursuance of authority. As the president reminds anyone who will listen, “I won!” What he fails to recognize is that in most races the victor gets to rest, relax and kick back and enjoy the fruits of his victory. In his most recent endeavor he is figuring out that the _expression “to the victor belong the spoils” should really be: “you won an ugly job; now deal with it.
Where is Osama bin Laden?
One might think that Osama would be anxious to contact Obama and send one of his video “cave side chats” to the new president. It has been strangely absent in the nine weeks since the inauguration. This has become such a tradition that we miss it when it doesn’t show up.
It is especially mysterious because our new chief executive is the recipient of one of those “na-na-na-na-nah” moments. With all the problems he has, it would appear an ideal time for Osama to taunt him as well. It would certainly fit the third grade mind set propagated by both sides.
For a more realistic view of the situation we turn to a column on the Volokh Conspiracy from Randy Barnettt
“Osama bin Elvis: Angelo M. Codevilla, a professor of international relations at Boston University, has a fascinating analysis of the "war on terror" that challenges the conventional wisdom of conservatives, progressives, and libertarians alike. In fact, his essay Osama bin Elvis challenges so much conventional wisdom that it makes your head spin. Yet it is curiously plausible and even sensible.” The link takes you to the archive page and you will have to scroll nearly to the bottom for the March 15 article with excerpts from essay. This is definitely a "read the whole thing" piece……
My only question after reading this was to ask if not Osama, then who?
A Bonus Scandal at Wal-mart
It was bound to happen. The frequently maligned Wal-Mart has really done it this time. They have announced the distribution of assorted bonuses to “special” employees to the tune of nearly 2 billion in cash, 401k contributions and merchandise certificates. The only remaining question then is what constitutes a "special “employee. It turns out that over half of the recipients are hourly employees.
You know them well; the geezer who hustles up a shopping cart, the lady that slices that good French bread, the guy in house wares who is the only one who knows where that reverse tape roller that gets the car hair off your navy suit jacket is, and all the others who make an attempt to assure you get what you want at the nation’s largest retailer. The average employee, figured across the board, will receive about $667 apiece. Some will get less and some will get more but the difference will no doubt be based on longevity and current hourly rate.
I don’t remember them getting part of the porkulus package. Maybe the top executives have been playing the lottery. Nope. I do believe they are taking it from their profits which they freely acknowledge were in a large part generated by these same employees. It is basically the same principal (without contractual arrangements) that AIG was implementing. They have some good employees and they wish to retain them. They recognize the vital role of experienced people to be the face of the company. Since the government was not involved, they retain their autonomy as well. The absolute last thing which any successful business needs is an additional layer of regulatory pressure.
It recalls a statement made by the CEO during the Katrina mess. He said to his managers; “Do the right thing.” For additional information, click here.
It is that glorious time of year when there are more suitable days to play golf than there is time to allow for the pastime. The color of the shrubs and flowers has returned along with the redbud and the dogwood in an otherwise drab winter forest. It serves as a welcome relief from the constant flow of nastiness which comes surging out of Washington. It is also a reminder of the constancy of God’s natural world as opposed to the perpetual mess which man makes with his own hands. It is small wonder that politicians acquiesce to proposals which diminish faith since that is the way we are reminded of where we came from and where we are going without their assistance. Thank God for spring.
In His abiding love,
Posted by One of the Moons at 10:39 AM