Charlie's Blog: July 2016

7.31.2016

Random Thoughts on Various Subjects 21


What's another word for thesaurus?
STEVEN WRIGHT

1. DNC

I spared myself much of the spectacle that was the Democratic National Convention, but I did catch Hillary Clinton's final speech. It was a yawnfest, and I was amused that Bill Clinton fell asleep during the speech. For the most part, Hillary achieved one thing. The Democrat Party is the party of everyone except white working class straight males. This group would be Trump's people, and Hillary will finish them off when she gets elected president.

There's not much else to say about Hillary except that she is a pro-death crook. But there is a key difference between Clinton and Trump, and it is a strategic one. Hillary is a survivor, and she has taken a lot of crap and flak over the years. The woman is unflappable. She keeps plugging away. Donald Trump is the opposite. He can't let anything go. He has to respond to everything. The result is that Hillary looks like a lady of steel while Trump looks whiny. As Clinton has pointed out in her speech, she has focused more on the service part of public service. Trump is a relentless self-promoter and self-defender.

Which strategy is better? I can say that Trump's strategy is not the Christian way. We have to bear detraction and calumny with patience. Ted Cruz practices this becoming livid at Trump only when his wife and father were attacked. But he has endured all the flak that has come at him with patience and without responding in kind. Sad to say, Hillary is more like Cruz than Trump.

2. FEEL THE BERN

Bernie Sanders has left the Democrat Party once more and declared himself an independent again. That speaks volumes. It is obvious to me that Sanders wanted to duplicate the Ron Paul campaign. Paul ran as a Republican, and he brought a lot of attention to his libertarian issues and message. You don't have to win the nomination to make an impact. Thanks to Ron Paul, many have a healthy distrust of the Federal Reserve where they didn't even know what the Federal Reserve was. We can call these campaigns "information campaigns." Being in the primaries of a mainstream party and participating in debates gives you a national platform. Running for president in this manner is a smart move.

The problem with Bernie is that he was more successful than he anticipated. Relatively, Sanders was more successful than Ron Paul because Paul never had a realistic shot of winning the GOP nomination. Sanders basically won the Democratic nomination and got ripped off. Then, the guy sold out to the crook that ripped him off by endorsing Hillary.

I don't think Bernie Sanders ever wanted to be president. If he did, he wouldn't have taken it all lying down. The man ran to lose. I think if he knew what his chances were going to be he would have stayed home to let Hillary run unopposed. And that should be a lesson, Gentle Reader. Don't run for president if you can't handle winning.

3. SHEA REDUX

My wife took me to task for being less than charitable to Mark Shea in last week's RTOVS for being a closet supporter of Hillary Clinton. I disagree with her, and I am glad to provide a link to an article showing how uncharitable Shea is to conservatives like myself. My belief about Mark Shea is that he interprets Catholic teaching as "pro-life socialism." Now, like Shea, I am a fan of G.K. Chesterton, and I subscribe to much of what we know as Distributism. Unfortunately for Mr. Shea, I do not subscribe to distributism as a form of decentralized socialism.

The article I link also goes on to criticize Simcha Fisher. Why do these two seem to have a thing for Hillary Clinton and a hatred for the GOP and conservatism? I suspect that it has something to do with welfare. I know Fisher has accepted welfare in the past, and I suspect Shea has as well considering that he makes his living as a professional Catholic. I don't think it is a sin to accept government welfare, but I do think it colors your perspective on politics.

I find that people's politics stem not so much from their thinking on issues so much as from temperament and personality. I will write more on this subject in a future essay.

4. Q & A

Q: Is Donald Trump racist?

A: No.

It is important for people to clarify their terms. The term "racist" denotes someone who believes one race is superior to all of the others. This is the thinking of the Nazis and the KKK. If you read Mein Kampf, Hitler made the argument that certain races were superior in intellect and civilization to others. If you based the argument purely on the brute facts alone, you would become a racist. But truth has as much to do with what you leave out as much as what you put in. Yes, people of European descent (white people) have done better than people of other races and nationalities, but this has little to do with the content of melanin in their skin or some genetic advantage. The fact is that Europe in the pre-Christian era was a hellhole of barbarism. What made those white people so civilized was the civilizing effect of the Christian religion.

Hitler destroyed his own argument by his own barbarism. As the Nazi German state regressed to paganism, it also regressed to barbarism on such a scale that Hitler and his ilk are now virtual synonyms with evil. It is also why those of leftist persuasion use an equivocation with the Nazis and the KKK to excoriate their opponents. This is how Donald Trump magically becomes a "racist."

A "bigot" is someone who holds certain prejudicial views about groups of people. On that definition, Donald Trump and every person alive is a bigot. If you believe Italians love pasta, you can be considered a bigot. You may say this does not apply, yet we suddenly have a problem when we point out that Jews like matzo and Gefilte fish or blacks like fried chicken and watermelon. Why should pointing out such obvious things be the cause of offense? Yet, there is a large difference between someone who believes that certain groups like certain things and someone who believes an entire race of people should be subjugated and exterminated.

We can realistically say that Trump is a bigot. He has made comments that betray a certain prejudice such as when he remarked that Jews were good with money. But is the man an anti-Semite? The fact that he has a Jewish son-in-law and a daughter that converted to Judaism speaks volumes to the man not being anti-Semitic.

The better question to ask is this. Can you be a bigot and also not a racist? The answer is yes. You can believe that all races are equal and deserving of dignity while at the same time believing they are not the same. Trump's bigotry comes from the habit of speaking obvious truths. The man is not politically correct. But he isn't Hitler.

The problem with Trump is that he makes his points without reference to anything substantial like the Christian religion. For instance, he denigrates illegal immigrants but makes no distinction between those who come to work hard to make better lives for their families and those who belong to narco-terrorist gangs. The difference is the Christian religion. The result is that you have leftists deciding that all immigrants are good, and Trumpists saying that all immigrants are bad. This inability to make distinctions is what turns the whole debate into a farce.

Trump is someone who says the deliberately controversial thing to push the argument. But then he walks it back a bit. It is a rhetorical strategy more than a worldview. At the end of the day, he makes compromises and cuts deals that fall somewhere in the middle. The result is that he might get a wall, but he might also increase the quotas on immigration to make it easier for good and honest people to have a new life in the USA.

Donald Trump is politically incorrect. I like this. This country needs this. We need someone who isn't afraid to say honest things. People may hate him now, but I think they will love him later. People will forgive you for speaking the truth.

5. ODDS AND ENDS

--Pope Francis is a liberal and a modernist. We should just acknowledge these facts and deal with them.

--I never took that free upgrade to Windows 10. With the offer now expired, I am glad to not have that annoying bubble popping up on my computer all the time begging me to switch. Windows 7 until my desktop machine fries out!

--People who say Fox News isn't fair and balanced need to do a headcount on the liberal reporters/pundits on air at Fox. I know of four right off the bat.

--There is a social cost to being a Trump supporter. I suspect that people will keep their mouths shut and let their ballots do the talking in November sort of like how no one saw the Brexit coming. The majority may truly be silent.

6. QUOTABLE QUOTES

My dear brethren, this is how: listen well and you will understand if you have religion as God wants you to have it in order to lead you to Heaven. If a person has true virtue, nothing whatever can change him; he is like a rock in the midst of a tempestuous sea. If anyone scorns you, or calumniates you, if someone mocks at you or calls you a hypocrite or a sanctimonious fraud, none of this will have the least effect upon your peace of soul. You will love him just as much as you loved him when he was saying good things about you. You will not fail to do him a good turn and to help him, even if he speaks badly of your assistance. You will say your prayers, go to Confession, to Holy Communion, you will go to Mass, all according to your general custom.
ST. JOHN VIANNEY

When you decide firmly to lead a clean life, chastity will not be a burden on you: it will be a crown of triumph.
ST. JOSEMARIA ESCRIVA

Sheer persistence is the difference between success and failure.
DONALD TRUMP

If we do not restore the Institution of Property we cannot escape restoring the Institution of Slavery; there is no third course.
HILAIRE BELLOC

7. LINKS OF INTEREST

A Collision-Course With Crisis: Making The Wrong Choices For The Wrong Reasons

Bedtime

The Practice of Silence For Laypeople

Does God Will Tragedy?

The Myth of the Council of Jamnia and the Origin of the Bible

25 Gardening Books You Should Own


7.29.2016

VIDEO--Clinton Cash


The law dictates how much politicians can collect in campaign contributions, limits their ability to make money on the side, and requires the disclosure of those contributors. Hopefully, politicians are also limited to some extent by their conscience. A sense of decency and good judgment ought to prevent politicians on both sides of the aisle from engaging in certain transactions—even if they think they can get away with it.
PETER SCHWEIZER

I highly recommend this documentary. You can watch it here.

Clinton Cash is a documentary that shows how the Clintons went from being flat broke and in debt when they left the White House at the end of Bill's term and how they became multimillionaires since then. The two of them are career politicians who have spent the entirety of their careers in public service. Yet, Bill and Hillary managed to turn what is relatively low paying work into a highly lucrative racket. Here's how they did it.

The Clintons make a lot of money from speaking fees. They can bring down in one speech more than they make in the entire year. They also receive large donations to their Clinton Foundation which masquerades as a charity but is nothing more than a tax free slush fund for the two of them. Less than 10% of the foundation's money goes to charitable and humanitarian activity. And why do foreigners pay so much cash to these two crooks? These two crooks use their influence to bring about favorable outcomes for these foreigners. It reached its full dirtiness when Hillary was Secretary of State.

This documentary documents the shadiness that is Clinton. As I watched it, it confirmed things I already knew, but I was shocked at just how extensive the scheme has been. I think it continues with the likes of Goldman Sachs and others paying large speaking fees to Ms. Clinton. This is nothing less than bribery of public officials. Yet, it is "legal."

When you get to the end of this documentary, you will be disgusted that such slime exists and can even be running for president. Hillary Clinton and her husband both belong in jail. At the very least, they don't deserve to occupy the White House again. All I can say is that the Clintons make Nixon look like a Boy Scout. Heaven help this country if this crooked bitch gets elected.

Follow the money. Watch the documentary.

7.23.2016

Random Thoughts on Various Subjects 20


Right now I’m having amnesia and déjà vu at the same time. I think I’ve forgotten this before.
STEVEN WRIGHT

1. REPUBLICAN NATIONAL CONVENTION

I have been listening to some of the speeches this week from the RNC. I am a busy guy, so there is no way I took in the gavel-to-gavel coverage of the convention. My opinion was that this year's RNC was like a train wreck. It was exciting and disastrous at the same time. This was supposed to be when the three competing groups--Establishment, conservative, and Trumpist--would bury the hatchet, unite, and take down Hillary Clinton. Unfortunately, that just didn't happen.

The Establishment types like Kasich, Romney, and the Bushes were conspicuous in their absence. Those guys are done in the Republican party. Their only hope is for Donald Trump to lose, and the Trumpists to go back to drinking PBR and watching football and hockey highlights on ESPN. What they don't get is that the Trumpists can't afford cable or Pabst anymore. This is an important fact to remember. Those Joe Sixpack working class Republicans are more than happy with a Bush or a Romney so long as the economy is humming, and there are working class jobs. It doesn't take much to placate them. So, what happened?

Mitt Romney lost. That is what happened. And it was the way he lost. He indicated that he cared more about the 1% than working class Americans. That ended the complacency of who I call the Trumpists aka the "silent majority." If you scratch below the surface, there is not a whole lot of difference between Trump and Romney. The difference is that Trump speaks to the people in the cheap seats where Romney aimed for the luxury sky boxes. Neither man is animated by any deeply held convictions.

As for the speeches, I can note a few things. I think Chris Christie's mock trial of Hillary Clinton was his campaign to be named Attorney General if Trump wins. I think Christie would be a great AG. I cringed during Peter Thiel's LGBTQ sodomite speech. Then, there was Ted Cruz. That guy deserves his own paragraph.

Ted Cruz did not endorse Trump. He told Republicans to "vote their conscience" and for the person who they thought would uphold the Constitution. The Trumpists immediately knew that Cruz was not talking about Trump because Trump is a man without conscience or principle. That fact speaks volumes. Cruz never insulted Trump or denigrated the man or anything. He simply refrained from endorsing a man who never apologized for his slandering of the man's wife or father. Was Cruz right to withhold his endorsement? Absolutely. And Cruz told Trump he was not going to endorse him. What did Trump think was going to happen?

Cruz is truly a man of principle. I laugh when people portray him as some Machiavellian political schemer. If the man is a schemer, he is not very good at it. If you want to see what a sellout looks like, just think back to when Bernie Sanders endorsed Hillary Clinton. What did Sanders get for that? Or consider Chris Christie being reduced to beta male status after endorsing Trump early on. What do you get for selling out? You don't get anything.

Cruz will pay a political price for what he did, but it is worth paying. Cruz knows he will be hated now and loved later. As for me, I truly wish that guy had won the nomination instead of Trump. But he didn't. If Trump loses, I sincerely hope Cruz runs again in 2020. Ted Cruz is a true conservative. He is what this country really needs.

What this country doesn't need is Hillary Clinton. I support whoever the Republican is in a race. In this case, it is Donald Trump. Love him or hate him, he is better than the alternative. I can understand why guys like Cruz or Mark Levin put a wide space of daylight between them and Trump. They don't want the taint of the man clinging to them. At the end of the day, I think the Establishment and the conservatives will hold their noses and vote for Trump. And if Trump wins, they will spend the next four years being his biggest critics.


I used to like Mark Shea. Now, I don't. I quote him now:
The case for Hillary is simple. She’s not Trump.  That’s it.  That’s all.  I support Hillary with the white hot passion of a thousand shrugs.  Which is to say I’d vote for her if I had to (if I lived in a swing state), but will vote a third party protest both against the both of them since I live in ultra-violet blue Washington and don’t have to vote for her for her to carry the state.
Basically, Shea makes the same argument for supporting Hillary that I make for supporting Trump. There is one big difference between Trump and Clinton. Trump says that he is pro-life and pledges to support pro-life policies and appoint pro-life conservatives to the SCOTUS. He may or may not honor that pledge. I would not be surprised if he didn't. But Hillary has virtually guaranteed that she will support the pro-death position on abortion and euthanasia with as much passion as she can muster. Shea's case for Hillary is like saying Darth Vader is a better choice than Jabba the Hutt because he looks so cool in the mask and the cape.

Here's the deal. Shea really likes Hillary. He can't go along with her abortion stuff, but he is more than willing to go along with the rest of her program. This is because Shea is not a conservative but a closet socialist. I can't see the stain of it on his pants, but I can smell it. And it isn't pleasant.

Trump is a scoundrel. Hillary is evil. It would be great to be able to choose for Luke and Leia, but sometimes, you have to gamble on Han Solo. Han was not a boy scout, but he came through when it counted. I think Trump will do the same.

3. CLINTON / KAINE

Hillary picks a Catholic in Name Only for her veep slot. Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine has only one purpose to serve in this campaign. He has to deliver Virginia. Hillary knows she has the blue states like New York and California, and she has no chance in red states like Texas. She just needs a handful of red states to make the electoral difference. Virginia is a "purple" state because it can be either red or blue. Ohio and Florida are also purple states. Virginia has 13 electoral votes.

This website is a handy way to game possible electoral outcomes. If you turn Virginia blue, that puts Hillary at 230. She needs just 40 to win the election. That leaves the battleground states of Florida, Ohio, and others. I can fill out NC for Trump and NH for Hillary. I think Trump might carry Wisconsin. Hillary will take CO and NV. PA will probably go for Hillary which leaves her one vote shy. I will give Iowa and Ohio to Trump. It could be up to Florida which Trump must win but probably won't. If Trump did win Florida, it would be a tie of 269 for each. Trump winning Florida is the worst case scenario for Hillary, yet she would still be tied with him. This is why Virginia matters.

Hillary must gamble that Florida will go for her, and it probably will. It went for Obama in the last election, so it is a good bet it will go for Hillary. But if she could afford to lose Florida and still win in Ohio. She has options. But who will deliver Ohio?

Kaine was a safe pick, and he eliminates Virginia as a possible headache. If you want to know why I think Hillary picked Kaine over someone like Elizabeth Warren, it all comes down to math. The guy is just boring. Hillary needs boring for balance.

4. Q & A

Q: Are you not a sellout for supporting Trump?

A: I became a sellout the moment I moved from being a libertarian back to being a conservative. People who understand conservatism in the Burke/Kirk mindset will understand completely why I now support Donald Trump. Conservatism is fundamentally about making the least worst choice. In any and every decision, you must make the best choice of the options you have available remembering that the perfect is the enemy of the good.

I am a principled conservative and supporting Trump does not run contrary to those principles anymore than when Reagan supported Nixon and Ford though he was a Goldwater man. At the end of the day, you vote Republican because Republicans are always better than Democrats.

I wish we had better options. I wish Ted Cruz was our guy. But he isn't. So, vote for Trump. Four years is a long time. I want those four years to be better than the last eight.

5. ODDS AND ENDS

--The Antichrist will come from Turkey. He will be Muslim, and his name might be Erdogan.

--Twitter is anti-conservative. They can ban Milo but not ISIS or BLM.

--The DNC will be a week of equating Trumpism with Nazism.

--Munich is looking like a white guy gone nuts. Expect a whole media thing about Islamophobia to drown out the reality of Muslim barbarism.

6. QUOTABLE QUOTES

Cross, toil, anguish: such will be your lot as long as you live. That was the way Christ went, and the disciple is not above his Master.
ST. JOSEMARIA ESCRIVA

Rudeness is the weak man’s imitation of strength.
EDMUND BURKE

Liberals claim to want to give a hearing to other views, but then are shocked and offended to discover that there are other views.
WILLIAM F. BUCKLEY

Men cannot improve a society by setting fire to it: they must seek out its old virtues, and bring them back into the light.
RUSSELL KIRK

He who suffers in patience, suffers less and saves his soul.  He who suffers impatiently, suffers more and loses his soul.
ST ALPHONSUS LIGUORI

The measure of love is to love without measure.
ST. FRANCIS DE SALES

It is not the actual physical exertion that counts towards a one’s progress, nor the nature of the task, but by the spirit of faith with which it is undertaken.
ST. FRANCIS XAVIER

7. LINKS OF INTEREST

Time to Put Out Electric Votive Candles

Materialism: The False God of Modern Science

Why Are the Classics Necessary?



7.22.2016

In the Light


And if you feel that you can't go on. And your will's sinkin' low
Just believe and you can't go wrong.
In the light you will find the road.
LED ZEPPELIN, In the Light

Sometimes, bands create songs in the studio that cannot be recreated live. "In the Light" is one of those songs. John Paul Jones nixed any ideas of doing this one live because he could not get the same sounds on stage that he could in the studio. This is understandable when you consider that the song is more about texture than notes. Its synthesizer and bowed acoustic guitar drone could never be heard correctly from the stage. Despite this, it is a great song.

I tend to divide bands into two basic categories. Some bands are performing bands while other bands are recording bands. For instance, the Beatles were a recording band. The Rolling Stones were a performing band. Sometimes, you get a band that manages both to a high degree. This would be Pink Floyd. I would also include Led Zeppelin. Both bands put out good albums and good shows.

Readers probably wonder what the deal is with these Led Zeppelin essays, but I have explained it before. I wanted to write a rambling essay, so I took a Led Zep song title for my essay--"Ramble On." Things went crazy from there. Fortunately, Zep recorded a lot of songs, so I have an endless supply of titles. When I do get to the end of their catalogue, I will probably run with the Doors.

When I write these essays, I listen to the song while I am writing. When the song runs out, I play a few more from the Zeppelin or perhaps some other band. It stimulates me a bit to pour out some stream of consciousness writing. Right now, I am listening to "The Rover."

Is it right or wrong to listen to rock music? This is more a problem for Baptists than Catholics, but it sometimes crosses my mind. Evangelical Christians adopted Christian rock music as an answer to the question, but it ended up in churches which is pretty bad. On the other hand, putting sacred music into a secular space has its own problems.

I remember reading an interview with Audrey Assad who makes a distinction between church music and secular music. I think this is an important division to keep in mind. There are things that are common, and there are things that are sacred. They shouldn't be mixed. This doesn't mean that you can't deal with the sacred in a secular setting. But a perfect evening for me is a Saturday night vigil Mass followed by a beer at a bar and some Motown on the jukebox. Likewise, I don't think the architecture of a church should be the same as the architecture of an office building or a home.

Everything we do is an offering to God, but some things are explicitly sacred while others are only implicitly so. For instance, a housewife that prepares a meal for her family does so for the glory of God but not in the same way that a priests confects bread and wine into the body and blood of Jesus Christ at the sacrifice of the Mass. Such things should be obvious, yet we have lost the meaning of it somewhere. Priests should be priests. Laity should be laity.

This confusion comes from Protestantism that has backwashed back into the Roman Catholic Church. The cool thing about the Latin Mass is that it prevented such nonsense from happening. The novus ordo opened the door to innovations that aren't necessarily improvements. I suspect people want to be entertained instead of being in communion with God Almighty.

I'm trying to stimulate my brain with strong black coffee, but the caffeine isn't working so well at the moment. That is the thing with automatic writing. You have to leap out of the airplane door without a parachute and hope a parachute appears before you become one with the earth. So far, no parachute. I'm getting worried.

These pieces seldom get written in one shot. I usually start them and experience an interruption which causes me to break from the writing. Then, I return and the same thing happens again. I have written these essays in four or five bouts of writing over the course of a week or more. I just dump and bleed into this thing whenever it becomes convenient. As for my personal journal, I started it, and I have forgotten it. I need to get back to it.

I have been watching the Republican National Convention this week. It has been a train wreck--thrilling and disastrous at the same time. I don't know about the future of the GOP. I just know the present is pretty bad. It also begs a question. Is conservatism dead? That is a hard question to answer except to say that conservatism is definitely a minority viewpoint in this day and time. It might be a fruitful subject for another essay.

That coffee is not going to do the trick for me today. Sometimes, you just have to abandon the writing and let it die in the cold shivering and alone. Sorry.

Here is a picture of Stephen King's Wang word processor:

7.16.2016

Random Thoughts on Various Subjects 19


You know, you can't please all the people all the time... and last night, all those people were at my show.
MITCH HEDBERG

1. NICE

Another terrorist attack in France. This time, they got creative and used a truck. France needs to expel all Muslim migrants and be France again. I doubt this will happen. It is ironic that this tragedy occurred on Bastille Day because that is the day when France went off the rails culturally as it rejected Christianity in favor of Jacobinism. This Jacobinism is what makes France morally impotent in the face of Islamic Terror.

If France elects Marine Le Pen, they would be doing themselves a huge favor. Likewise, the USA would be doing itself a similar favor in electing Donald Trump. The Muslim religion is an abomination, and it needs to be expelled from Western countries.

2. PENCE

Trump taps Mike Pence for the veep slot, and you can tell it is more a marriage of convenience than true love. Trump needs Pence as a bridge to the conservatives he has alienated. Pence needs a new job because his chances of reelection in Indiana were not looking hot. As for Gingrich, he would be a good chief of staff for Trump. As veep, he was going to be a big problem because his ego is almost as big as Trump's. Trump has a blank in Pence, and the guy will do his job.

This selection says a great deal about how Trump will govern. The man has a flammable image as a reckless maverick, but he ends up doing safe and sensible things. Of the three candidates being considered, Pence was the safest and most conservative. I believe Trump will make similar choices for the rest of his cabinet.

On the Democrat side, Hillary looks like she wants Warren. That will be a hoot. That woman is a complete nut.

3. THE DECLINE OF WHITE CHRISTIAN AMERICA

This is an interesting article because it points to a fact that I have known for sometime. Protestantism is headed for destruction. It cannot last. The author tries to point to demographics and politics as an explanation. Basically, white people are in a population decline, and evangelical Christianity is too traditional and politically incorrect to make it. The problem with this analysis is that it overlooks the fact that sellout Christianity as found in mainline Protestantism is declining more rapidly than evangelical Protestantism.

What is the real reason for the decline of white Christian Protestant America? The answer is very obvious. Neither the robust evangelicals nor the sellout mainliners have the true Christian religion. They have nothing worth passing down to their offspring which thanks to contraception and abortion has dwindled considerably. Without the true religion of Catholicism, Protestantism will inevitably fade out. That salt is no longer salty.

Catholics don't have it much better as most Catholics in America are CINOs or Catholics in Name Only. The difference is that Catholics have the seed for renewal and rebirth found in the valid sacraments and the deposit of faith found in the Magisterium. Catholicism never dies though it may wither for a season. Evangelical Protestants should convert to Catholicism.

4. SELLOUT SANDERS

Bernie Sanders endorses Hillary Clinton, and he flushes whatever credibility he has and respect he has earned down the toilet. At least Ron Paul had the good sense to endorse the Constitution Party guy. Sanders should have done the same with an endorsement of the Green Party. He would have had an afterlife with his Bernistas who now see him as a total sellout. Why did Bernie do it?

The answer to that question should be no mystery. Leftists are without principle. Bernie is a leftist. The fact is that Sanders did more within the Democrat party than Ron Paul ever did in the Republican party. Bernie had a shot at winning the nomination. But this explains why Bernie is Bernie. Sanders taps into that leftist angst that propels him somewhere. He uses his dupes. Then, he delivered his endorsement to Clinton who will repay with a spot in the new administration should she win. Meanwhile, Bernie supporters can feel the warmth of the urine that just hit their legs.

Bernie used you. Now, he will discard you. Leftists always do this.

5. TURKEY

As I write this, there has been a failed coup attempt in Turkey. I support the coup attempt, and it is bad news that it failed. Erdogan is the Islamic antichrist. The man has been a supporter of ISIS, a denier of the Armenian genocide, a dictator, and an all around baddie. With this failure by his opponents, the man will be more ruthless than before. As for the coup leaders and their helpers, they will certainly die a long and painful death when they are captured.

6. Q & A

Q: Do you need drugs and alcohol to be creative?

A: I can only speak for myself, but I don't need those things. I once wrote a short story while I was drunk in college, and it was the worst thing I had ever written. I was following the advice of a writing instructor who I suspect wrote a great deal while under the influence of alcoholic beverages. As for drugs, I have never used them.

I find the biggest spur to my creativity is to read much and meet various people. For some reason, that stream of influence takes me to new places I would not have found in isolation. Read widely and converse with people you may not agree with.

7. QUOTABLE QUOTES

It may take a long time for Western civilization to realize that the good it is seeking is the good that it left. The world will not quickly realize that the Church which it believed was so restraining to liberty is really the only force that can make us free, and that which was so much behind the times is the only institution which has survived the times.
VENERABLE ARCHBISHOP FULTON SHEEN

For a man is not merely whosoever has hands and feet of a man, nor whosoever is rational only, but whosoever practices piety and virtue with boldness.
ST. JOHN CHRYSOSTOM

It's hard to beat a person who never gives up.
BABE RUTH

Don't wish it were easier. Wish you were better.
JIM ROHN

...talent means nothing, while experience, acquired in humility and with hard work, means everything.
PATRICK SUSKIND

The writer's curse is that even in solitude, no matter its duration, he never grows lonely or bored.
CRISS JAMI

No one understands and appreciates the American Dream of hard work leading to material rewards better than a non-American.
ANTHONY BOURDAIN

Your friends will believe in your potential, your enemies will make you live up to it.
TIM FARGO

No one ever drowned in sweat.
UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS

You haven’t been praying? Why, because you haven’t had time? But you do have time. Furthermore, what sort of works will you be able to do if you have not meditated on them in the presence of the Lord, so as to put them in order? Without that conversation with God, how can you finish your daily work with perfection? Look, it is as if you claimed you had no time to study because you were too busy giving lessons. Without study you cannot teach well. Prayer has to come before everything. If you do not understand this and put it into practice, don’t tell me that you have no time: it’s simply that you do not want to pray.
ST. JOSEMARIA ESCRIVA

I ask the Lord to help me be faithful minute by minute, day by day.
BLESSED ALVARO DEL PORTILLO

8. ODDS AND ENDS

--Blackberry abandons BB10 in favor of Android. The problem with this move is that it cements the conventional wisdom that no one should ever buy a Blackberry product because Blackberry will abandon you later. It's like trying to have confidence in a ship's captain that never takes off his life jacket.

--White people get rehab. Black people get jail.

--I totally support Cardinal Sarah's call for ad orientem.

--I will be glad when Pokemon GO becomes Pokemin GONE like Tetris and Angry Birds. People should play chess instead.

--The Star Wars Episode 8 reincarnation thing has killed it for me. I'm out. Star Wars can go to hell now.

--Tart cherry juice and cherries are a miracle. I recommend them highly for inflammation and joint pain.

9. LINKS OF INTEREST

The Way to Flourish at College and Beyond

Who’s the Libertarian Now?

Rome Be Damned

The Law Is Dying Because Morality Is Dying

They Come From Planet Klepto

7.15.2016

Work Theory


The three great essentials to achieve anything worthwhile are, first, hard work; second, stick-to-itiveness; third, common sense.
THOMAS EDISON

This post will not be an organized one. It is written from the jumble of thoughts I glean from my work life. I have been doing various forms of blue collar work ever since my old man put me to work at thirteen. Over those years, I have learned and developed a body of principles that constitute a theory about work in particular and life in general. I call this body of principles my "work theory."

Theory is defined as a set of principles on which the practice of an activity is based. In my case, the activity is just work in the blue collar mode. The first chunk of work theory is what I call my "work rules." These are the three things I have learned over the years make the job better and even more fun. Here they are:

1. ABD
2. ABH
3. QYB

They are letters, but the letters stand for something. I just use the letters as an easy way to remember the rules. Here is the explanation.

1. Always be doing.

Idleness is the enemy of productivity and work. This doesn't mean that you can't take a break or get rest. Those breaks just have to be earned, and they are sweeter when you have actually earned them. Otherwise, your every waking moment should be dedicated to some activity or task. Idleness needs to be obliterated in your life. Such a relentless dedication to always working might seem hellish, but you will find it blissful if you commit to doing it. Don't let those Zen practitioners fool you. Nirvana is not found in stillness but activity.



2. Always be hustling.

Hustling has to do with the tempo of the work you are doing. Decades ago, I used to lift weights with a friend at the gym, but we never had time for cardio because we were students. But we worked on the same job, and he said our job could be cardio. You do the same things, but you do them faster. From him, I learned that work should also be a workout. There should be some aerobic benefit to the work you do. Now, don't go cutting your fingers off with the circular saw. Some things can't be rushed. But if you find yourself on the end of a shovel or a sink full of dishes, do the work briskly as to train the body like at the gym.



3. Quit your bitching.

I cannot recall a single time on the job where complaining made any difference. There are those workers who would rather bitch all day than work all day. At some point, you realize their bitching and whining is their way of getting out of the work. You can shut them up with a little mockery and ridicule and a command to "suck it up." But the main thing is to shut yourself up. Yes, things can be really bad on a job, but humor is the best way to handle it. If you have ever watched Mike Rowe's Dirty Jobs, you learn what it is to find humor in the unpleasant and the dirty tasks of life.



Do I always follow the work rules? Heck no. They are more ideals to aim at than to achieve. I have been idle on the job before, and I don't always hustle because I get tired. And, sometimes, I groan pretty loudly about management stupidity. But I am not better for breaking the rules. But I am better when I try and follow them.

The next component of my work theory is the Law of Work Attraction. I'm not a believer in the Law of Attraction or any of that New Age pseudocrap. But the Law of Work Attraction is totally real. Here it is. Work flows to the one who wants it. It can also be stated with another phrase. The reward for good work is more work. There is also a corollary to the Law which states that work flows away from the one who does not want it. I will explain how it works.


In any workplace I have ever encountered, you have about 10-20% of the people doing the real work with the remaining 80-90% just hanging out either doing nothing or doing the bare minimum to avoid getting fired. These people are either slackers or management. All managers are lazy by nature and scheme their way out of work. Why are things like this?

It never fails that on any job I do I end up with overtime on a weekly basis. I don't plan this, and I think it is a sin to milk the clock. But managers find that it is easier to get me to do a thing because of my willingness to do it than to argue and threaten someone else into doing it who doesn't want to do it all. This is how that 80/20 thing develops. A good manager would work hard to get work out of the slackers, but managers are lazy by their nature. So, they take the path of least resistance which is me and people like me. By the end of a workweek, the worker bees have 10 to 20 hours of overtime. The perplexed manager is left trying to explain to his boss why he has to pay out the extra. So, he blames the worker bees for "milking the clock." Somehow, these hard workers become lazy schemers getting over on the company. Yes, it is a ridiculous notion, but managers will say anything to excuse their own laziness.

The Law of Work Attraction is the cornerstone for success in life. You can be an unemployed bum, and you can rise if you embrace this Law. Once you decide that you want to work, work will flow to you like a river. It won't be immediate, but it will happen. This is how a lowly Mexican immigrant can end up owning multiple shops and restaurants within a decade. People love to dump work on hard workers forgetting that those people get paid for that work. If you just work hard at everything, good things will flow from that dedication. I can't guarantee that you will become a billionaire, but  the circumstances of your life will steadily improve as a consequence of this dedication to hard work.

This brings us to the third aspect of my work theory which deals with stress. Like it or not, the workplace can really stress you out. Yet, I have encountered people who never seem stressed about anything on the job. Nothing flusters them. They never get mad. They never bitch or complain. Their attitude tends to be positive. I have racked my brains to understand their secret until I realized something about these guys I admired and envied. They all had solid work ethics. They worked really hard. So, I tried it myself, and I discovered something. The antidote to stress is exhaustion.


When you are really tired and sleep deprived on the job, you never lose your cool. This is because anger and stress require energy. When you are exhausted from always working hard, you don't have the energy left to feed these things. Consequently, there are two ways you can burn yourself out. You can burn yourself out with work, or you can burn yourself out with worry. Choose the work option. I'd rather be pleasantly tired than stressed to a nervous breakdown.

All of this talk of tiredness and exhaustion probably makes you tired and exhausted. There is a belief that doing well on a job requires you to be in good health and rested. You may hear this when you read some article about the work benefits of taking vacations. The problem is that all of that "rested" talk is crap. I have learned another truth from doing blue collar work over these many years. Feeling bad is not the same as doing bad.

Just another day at work.
Yesterday, a co-worker told me of a day when he was physically ill and vomiting on the job. He tried to get the boss man to relieve him, but the boss did nothing because all bosses are slime. The irony was that my co-worker had one of his best days ever performance wise on a day when he should have stayed home to recover from his illness. I have had similar experiences. I have lost count of the days when I have worked while sick, sleep deprived, heat exhausted, injured, etc. I just never call out for any reason whatsoever. When I do call out, it is usually my vehicle that has failed because the battery was dead, or I had a flat tire on the way to work. When it comes to my body, I find suffering at work is not any different than suffering at home except you get paid to suffer at work. And don't worry. The moment you are too sick to work, they send you home because they aren't going to pay you to do nothing. This only happened to me once.

This constitutes my work theory at this stage of my working life. I will probably learn new things in the future. What I do know is that there is no end to work. Work is forever. What matters is how you think about that work. Embrace work as a reward. Don't endure it as a punishment. How you think about it affects how you do it. We have Mark Twain to thank for this insight. If you find the pleasure in work, you will have truly made a Heaven out of Hell.

7.10.2016

Gallows Pole


I couldn't get no silver, I couldn't get no gold,
You know that we're too damn poor to keep you from the Gallows Pole.
Hangman, hangman, hold it a little while,
I think I see my brother coming, riding many a mile.
Brother, did you get me some silver?
Did you get a little gold?
What did you bring me, my brother, to keep me from the Gallows Pole?
LED ZEPPELIN, Gallows Pole


This song is a folk song that Zep did for their third album. There are many versions by various artists, but the gist of the story is a condemned man (or maiden) is pleading for mercy and offering a bribe to the executioner. The executioner takes the bribe and still hangs the condemned. The hangman laughs as he says, "But now I laugh and pull so hard And see you swinging on the Gallows Pole." I don't know if there is a lesson there. The hangman strikes me as a sort of satanic figure.

Evil is without mercy. The irony is that evil is always begging for mercy. When evil finds itself on the losing end, it pleads for mercy sort of like Palpatine snivelling and whining in Revenge of the Sith. But when the tables are turned, he is merciless.


I can't help but see Hillary Clinton sharing the same essential nature with Palpatine. She was looking at hard time, but she managed to get mercy. And when she gains power, she will be merciless to her enemies. All the polls indicate that she will beat Trump, and I expect some rigged electioneering in places much like the shenanigans used against Sanders. Whether by honesty or crookery, Hillary will probably become president.

I am taking heat for being a Trump supporter, but I appreciate how evil Hillary Clinton will be. I really wish Cruz had won. There is a part of me that is sickened by the fact that I am left with Trump. I like to listen to Mark Levin on the drive home from work, and I find my views and his are virtually identical. Like Levin, I loved Cruz and hated Trump. The difference is that Levin is still holding out and putting daylight between him and Trump. But, at the end of the day, who are you going to vote for? Levin will cast a ballot for Trump whether he likes it or not. But between now and November, he is going to talk smack about the guy and be disappointed when he sees Hillary celebrating her victory.


I give credit to Levin to being the smartest and most well read pundit on conservative talk radio. He writes his own books, and his message is consistent and always conservative. He is my favorite pundit these days. The problem is that his callers sound a bit exasperated with him because he still bashes on Trump when it is too late to do any good. I am glad the man is principled, but life is about making difficult choices.

It is no secret that Democrat presidents are a boon to conservative talk radio hosts. The anger at a sitting liberal president drives the ratings of talk radio hosts through the roof. I secretly believe that these guys would love to see four years of Hillary. Talk radio thrives on discontent and misery.

Lately, I have been tuning into Alex Jones at Infowars. People who know me learn quickly that I am a fan of loony radio shows like Coast to Coast AM and Caravan to Midnight. Alex Jones is like a bridge between serious talk radio and loony talk radio. Most of the time, I think Alex Jones is a paranoid conspiracy theorist, and I dismiss his 9/11 Truth stuff. But then, he will drop a truth bomb on you like Bohemian Grove, and your mind gets blown. If he was merely talking about this stuff, you would dismiss it all as the rantings of a nutcase except he has actual video footage. Why are elites performing pagan rituals in the woods?


The thing I have learned about Alex Jones is that he may be wrong on some things, but he is exactly right on other things. As such, he is not the boy crying wolf but the canary in the coal mine. His overarching belief is that the globalist elite want to take over the world under the umbrella of one world government. Now, this might be the Illuminati or just some technocrats like the ones running the EU. The actions may or may not be real, but I do believe the agenda is real. Not all conspiracies are theories.

I don't believe in UFOs, alien abduction, chemtrails, 9/11 truth, or a whole host of other crazy stuff. Listening to these people actually helps my sanity because it makes me question the true and the false. The one thing I have changed my mind about over the years and probably makes me a nutcase is that I don't believe in the Lone Gunman Theory of the JFK Assassination. These things happen all the time in other countries and throughout history. It is already well known that the CIA performed such operations during the Cold War. And when you begin to dig into the facts surrounding Oswald and what happened in Dallas, it strains credulity to believe that this guy managed to pull that off by himself. There is also reams of evidence that indicate that Oswald worked for the CIA. I could write a whole book about it except others have already done this.

The JFK thing matters to me a great deal because it shows that this country suffered a coup. If they could do it, could it be done again? The simple fact is that our government has been shady and corrupt for longer than we know.

The belief that 9/11 was an inside job is one I cannot believe. I can believe that the Saudis or the Mossad knew about it, but I cannot believe that members of our government plotted and pulled off this act. It is too elaborate, and people would talk. Such a conspiracy could not hold. So, why did the JFK conspiracy hold together? It didn't. People have talked, and people have died for talking.

I used to not believe any of this stuff until I became convinced that Lee Harvey Oswald was working for the CIA. He was a low level guy, and they made him expendable. If Oswald is truly innocent, then his story is a sad one indeed. Ask yourself one question. How does a guy get a job in the Texas School Book Despository one month before JFK rides through Dealey Plaza? I could understand him being in the building if he was the assassin, but the job thing makes it too convenient. Oswald could have known about the visit but not the itinerary or the route of the motorcade. Basically, Oswald did it all on the spur of the moment with virtually no planning at all except to take a rifle to work.

I believe that the people who orchestrated the assassination simply told Oswald to get the job there. They had already picked him for the patsy. I believe JFK was shot from multiple directions by multiple gunmen. And I believe that JFK was marked for death ever since he messed up the Bay of Pigs invasion. Throw in a Cuban Missile Crisis and talks of peace with Kruschev, and the Cold Warriors decided that Kennedy had to go for the good of the country. They always wanted Nixon, and they knew Kennedy stole that election thanks to crooked Chicago. They killed him with a clean conscience believing the end justified the means.

I could be wrong on this, but it is hard to study up on Lee Harvey Oswald and conclude that he was just some deranged loser shifting around the country. The guy knew Russian and spent time in Russia as a "defector" after doing service in the USMC. That is too bizarre to be believed unless you conclude that he was a CIA flunky. As for the CIA, I recommended reading up on Project MKUltra to understand how foolish and evil a government agency can be. If they could do that, assassinating JFK doesn't seem as farfetched.

7.09.2016

Random Thoughts on Various Subjects 18


I intend to live forever or die trying.
GROUCHO MARX

1. CROOKED HILLARY

I must confess to being utterly surprised that the FBI and the Justice Department let Hillary skate on breaking laws concerning her email server and classified materials. I have always known Hillary was crooked, but this move this week shows that the whole system is corrupt. That was the real shocker. There are two questions we must ask. First, why did Hillary have that private server? Second, how did she get away with crimes that brought down others like Petraeus and Libby?

I can only speculate, but I believe Hillary was using the State Department as an extension of the Clinton Foundation offering quid pro quo deals to foreign donors in exchange for favors and information. The Clinton Foundation is nothing more than a slush fund masquerading as a charitable endeavor. The reason Hillary needed that private server was to keep her emails from being subject to Freedom of Information Act requests. Her official emails would automatically be archived when she sent emails and replies to others in the State Department and vice versa. But the dirty emails would never see the light of day. Destroy the server and poof! Hillary can play dumb and naive, but she is one shrewd crook. She knew exactly what she was doing.


As for getting away with it, Hillary basically offered a job to AG Lynch in the new administration which amounts to a bribe. As for FBI Director Comey, he was probably bribed or threatened. There is no telling what transpired in that interview with Hillary, but I believe she knows where bodies are buried in DC. Hillary has carrots and sticks at her disposal.

Hillary is exponentially more crooked than Tricky Dick Nixon ever was. The key difference between Nixon and Hillary is that Nixon never burned those tapes that brought him down. Even that guy had his limits, and I am in agreement with my old man when he told me that Nixon was actually the cleanest guy in Washington compared to guys like LBJ and even JFK. Nixon went down over two burglaries and using the IRS to get even with political opponents and enemies. Compared to the things we've learned from the Snowden revelations and what Obama has done, Nixon was a lightweight. He got caught tearing the tag off a mattress while people were being murdered next door.

FBI Director Comey did do one good thing. He basically admitted to the American public that Hillary was at best grossly negligent and a criminal at worse. Comey knows and America knows that Hillary Clinton belongs in prison for the rest of her life. This information makes the 2016 presidential election a trial on Hillary's criminality, and the American electorate will act as the jury. Comey's actions stink like a dead skunk in an outhouse, but he knows that it will all be fine when the decision gets thrown back on us in November.

Will America elect a blatant criminal to the White House? Ultimately, America itself is on trial. Are we still a moral nation? Do we still believe in the rule of law? Or, are we a debased and depraved country that doesn't care anymore? If Hillary makes it to the Oval Office, this country will deserve damnation.

2. BLACK LIVES MATTER

I am going to declare something radical, and it may get me in a lot of hot water. I don't care. It needs saying. Murdering innocent people is wrong. It really doesn't matter what color the killer or the killed may be. Murder is murder, and it is always wrong.

The problem we have today is a lack of moral clarity on these issues. This is because people choose sides over choosing what is right. Consequently, the end justifies the means depending on which side you take. Right now, I watch MSNBC and CNN run stories about black people getting shot by cops while Fox runs stories about white cops getting shot by black people.

The reality is that black people kill the most black people. Racist white cops don't even come close to the body count of gangs and thugs and drug dealers who terrorize neighborhoods and could care less than a place like Chicago is a "gun free zone." Yet, if black lives matter so much, why aren't the BLM people marching against the Bloods, the Crips, and every other killer of black people? Or, do black lives matter only when they are snuffed out by white cops?

The crime people are against isn't murder. It is racism. When a Blood blows out a Crip's brains, the good thing you can say about it was that it wasn't a racially motivated killing. Somehow, that makes it alright. With that thinking in mind, we should take all the white cops off the street, replace them with black cops, and let them mow down all black people. Murder is OK as long as there's no racism, and black cops can't be racist.

The problem with this country is that our moral code based on Judeo-Christian ethics and natural law has been replaced by political correctness, tribalism, and consequentialism. Without a common moral code, this country is forming sides and skidding towards civil war. Groups like BLM and individuals like our awful president fan the flames of this anger and hatred with their rhetoric that makes no appeal to God or morality.

In SC, the murder of the Charleston Nine should have provoked a cycle of racial tit-for-tat violence. This was Dylann Roof's objective. He wanted to start a race war. But Roof failed because he killed Christians who had families who responded to his senseless act with love and forgiveness. The aftermath was something that still staggers me now. As awful as that event was, I have seen SC become better because of it. That is the difference Christianity makes.

The rest of this country could care less about Christianity. Jesse Jackson had a great line. "End the violence, or the violence will end us." I can agree with that. Violence can never be a constructive answer. Yet, I am watching news stories that justify the killing of white police officers. And, no, those news stories are not on Fox.

I pray for this country. If things are ever going to get better, it will have to be the Christians who do it through their prayers and their charity.

3. GUNS ARE GOOD

The best argument I have against gun control are the arguments for knife control coming from the UK. Here is that ridiculous notion on display:


Now, even if you could manage to ban all knives, I can fashion a stabbing weapon from many things in my home in less than ten minutes. In less than ten seconds, I can mess you up really bad with a ballpoint pen. The beauty of learning Krav Maga or watching a Jason Bourne film is appreciating the value of improvised weapons.

Guns are good because they allow someone who is weak and defenseless to stop being weak and defenseless. This would be a ninety-year-old grandmother with a shotgun. Guns are great equalizers. This is why those in power want to take away your guns. They prefer a weak and defenseless population.

In the UK, the population is weak and defenseless. Consequently, those people are stabbed and bludgeoned on a regular basis by people more powerful and unafraid of weak and defenseless people. What is the answer? Stop knives and save lives. This is stupidity to the highest degree.

People have a natural right to defend themselves. There should be a new constitutional amendment establishing the right to self-defense and making clear what the Second Amendment assumed when it was written. But that was an era of common sense which has disappeared in our day.

Guns are good. You may not understand that now, but you will when you have one in your hand when some home invader kicks in your door.

3. GEORGE F. WILL EXIT

George F. Will made a theatrical gesture of changing his voter registration from Republican to Independent because the guy doesn't like Donald Trump. Good riddance to Mr. Will. I wish he would go the rest of the way and stop calling himself a conservative.

George F. Will is an atheist. His political mindset can best be described as a small government progressive which looks almost identical to being a libertarian. When a conservative stops believing in God, he becomes a libertarian. This is what happened to me in my thirties. I became an atheist which turned me into a libertarian. I fully expect George Will to vote for Gary Johnson in November.

I think George wanted to do this for a long time, but he needed some grand thing to justify such a grand move. I doubt that Will could ever be a robust libertarian because his pessimism makes him see humanity as inherently evil. But I don't think Will cares about abortion, gay marriage, or anything else. He is an atheist who sees the value of Plato's noble lie as a means of keeping the ignorant masses in check. The Will worldview is simple--reason for me and religion for you. Yet, Will is the real fool.

If you are a conservative, you should remain a Republican and vote Republican. This is consistent with conservatism because conservatism is not an ideology like libertarianism demanding purity and absolute conformity to an abstract principle. We never vote for the perfect. We vote for the better. The perfect does not exist in this world. Conservatives who bolt the party have forgotten what conservatism is about. They need to go back to Burke, Kirk, and Buckley and learn how to read again.

4. Q & A

Q: Where do you see yourself in five years?

A: I never look that far ahead. Life is what happens while you are making plans for a life that will never be. This is because circumstances dictate much of what your life will be. I prefer to think in terms of directions instead of goals. I don't know where I will be in five years, but I know I am pointed in the way that I should go. We will see if I get there.

5. QUOTABLE QUOTES

I use emotion for the many and reserve reason for the few.
ADOLF HITLER

Ordinary morality is only for ordinary people.
ALEISTER CROWLEY

The reasoning man who scorns the prejudices of simpletons necessarily becomes the enemy of simpletons; he must expect as much, and laugh at the inevitable.
MARQUIS DE SADE

Ideas are far more powerful than guns. We don't let our people have guns. Why should we let them have ideas?
JOSEF STALIN

Religion is regarded by the common people as true, by the wise as false, and by rulers as useful.
SENECA

6. ODDS AND ENDS

--People have forgotten that in order to have civilization people must be civil. In order to be civil, people must be civilized. And what civilizes? The answer is Christianity.

--When people bring in two codes of ethics--one for the elite and one for the masses--know that Hell is in the driver seat.

--Brexit was a step back from one world government. The Tower of Babel will always fail. Always.

--The 2% of the population that are vegan oppress the 98% that eat dead animal flesh.

--Trump should pick Newt Gingrich for VP. He needs a point man in Congress who knows the ropes.

7. LINKS OF INTEREST

Five Disciplines of Discipleship

7 Disappointed Saints, and How They Dealt With It

Francis Fatigue

Jesus Christ is God, and He Alone Can Bring Peace to Our Nation

7.04.2016

Thank You


If the sun refused to shine, I would still be loving you
When mountains crumble to the sea, there will still be you and me
LED ZEPPELIN, Thank You

This song was written by Robert Plant for his wife Maureen. They were married in 1968. They divorced in 1982. The sun still shines. The mountains have yet to crumble into the sea.

A favorite joke of mine goes that a boy pledged to a girl that he would climb any mountain and cross any sea to be with her, and he would be over on Tuesday night if it wasn't raining. I share the joke to give a bit of sobriety to the issue of love. It seems that love is full of so much promise and always short on delivery.

I think it would be hard to maintain a relationship with a wife if your job is being a rock star and banging out groupies each night. Love rarely survives such self indulgence. I have to laugh when people like this honestly believe they will be anything other than slimy cheaters, or that they can be something other than what they are. One of the most ridiculous stories I have ever heard was how one husband's fidelity did not last a single day as he was banging out one of the bridesmaids in a cloakroom during the reception at his own wedding.

Pope Francis has made another disgrace of himself with remarks about how many marriages conducted in Catholic churches aren't valid while cohabiting unmarried couples have a great deal of validity. If there was a point to that confused jumble of scandalous words, it has largely been lost on the rest of us. What I can agree on is that precious few people who marry actually follow through and deliver on their vows. The Holy Father had a very teachable moment in recognizing that sad truth, but he chose to blow it.

I know I am nutty, but I believe that you should be faithful to your spouse until you die. If you can't do that, you should not get married. Being a fornicator is one thing. Being a liar and an adulterer is worse.

People ask me if I believe in love since getting married. The answer is no. I don't believe in love. I just believe in my wife. Love is only as good as the people sharing it. But love has no magic power of its own. Love by itself doesn't make you chaste or virtuous. People who lack virtue can never have true love.

From what I've read, Led Zeppelin never performs this song live. It's a shame because it is one of their best songs. But I would hate to sing those lyrics each night knowing they were a sham and a lie. I can't really blame Plant for that. Poor guy.

I love being married. It is the best thing that has ever happened to me. Getting married has saved me from a lot of bad things especially atheism. My wife says that my blog sounds as negative now as it did back in the old days, but this is not intentional. The facts of life now are still the same as when I was an atheist except now my life has a purpose and a meaning that I didn't have back then. Back then, I suffered for nothing. Today, I suffer for something. But I still suffer. Suffering doesn't end until we get to Heaven.

I love this quotation from Arthur Schopenhauer:
What disturbs and depresses young people is the hunt for happiness on the firm assumption that it must be met with in life. From this arises constantly deluded hope and so also dissatisfaction. Deceptive images of a vague happiness hover before us in our dreams, and we search in vain for their original. Much would have been gained if, through timely advice and instruction, young people could have had eradicated from their minds the erroneous notion that the world has a great deal to offer them.
Schopenhauer did not believe in God and was a total pessimist. Yet, his insights in this quotation are thoroughly Christian. Everyone seeks happiness, yet life seems unable to deliver when it comes to happiness. Happiness can only be found in God, and this happiness is not complete until we behold the Beatific Vision in Heaven. In the meantime, life is a valley of tears.

With people, no relationship can be healthy unless God is in that relationship. This is true of parents and children, brothers and sisters, and husbands and wives. The problem with people is that they can be vicious to each other, and they cause each other so much grief. I get along with my wife precisely because of the faith that we share. And I would rather die than ever break her heart the way so many men casually do to their wives.


In other things, I have been reflecting on how awesome the eighties were. I was listening to some music from that time, and you can't help but notice a certain optimistic spirit in all of the music. That spirit was not there in music from the seventies. The best you could find was a certain fun quality to disco. But the seventies were a depressing time for people especially because of the economy. When Reagan and Thatcher came along, you could tell the mood had lightened. It is amazing to consider when you keep in mind that people lived under threat of nuclear annihilation. We could credit the optimism to an improved economy, but the nineties were actually better economically than the eighties. The nineties should have been more optimistic, but they weren't. You can see this in the music of the time especially the ultimate anthem of the nineties, "Smells Like Teen Spirit."


Why were the eighties optimistic while the nineties became a black hole of nihilism? You would think the fall of the Berlin Wall would have made that decade over the moon ecstatic. But it didn't. The simple fact is that the eighties ended in 1992 when Bill Clinton got elected. When that scoundrel came into the Oval Office, America lost itself, and it never recovered. The nineties never ended. George W. Bush was little better than Clinton, and Obama has been much worse.

Donald Trump seems to know all of this. When he makes the promise to "Make America Great Again," he means the America that existed in the eighties under Ronald Reagan. Personally, those were some of the worst years of my life as I hated high school. But off the school grounds, I have to admit that things were pretty cool in the country. I was old enough to remember Carter and the seventies, and no one was happy then. I remember my dad being happy to see Reagan come into office.

I think the country is in a similar spot as it was when it rejected Carter in favor of Reagan. Reagan won the election with a simple question. Are you better off now than you were four years ago? Carter couldn't deal with that because everyone knew they were worse off. Trump can ask the same question. Are you better off now than you were eight years ago? For most people, the answer is no.

This country is utterly stupid, so it would not surprise me if they voted in Hillary Clinton. Even with a liberal media whitewashing her as much as possible, people know that Hillary is crooked and evil. Polls have her leading, but I suspect they are skewed because the silent majority really is silent. The only question is whether it is still a majority.

I think if Trump won there would be a return of the spirit this country had during the eighties. Trump was a product of the eighties. That was the first time I had ever heard of the guy, and I never forgot him. I am amazed that he is still around even today. Like Reagan, Trump is not beloved by the Republican Party. But also like Reagan, Trump has tapped into a vein of deep dissatisfaction. The simple fact is that the liberals have made a mockery out of this country. Trump would end that mockery. ISIS will be defeated. The Pentagon would cease and desist with plans for transgender troops. Political correctness would end. And maybe the economy would get better.

For me, I would like to see a light at the end of the tunnel. Hillary is the darkness. Her victory would be at least four years of miserable hell. But if Trump won, it would be like seeing daylight. I miss the eighties. I would love to go back there. Trump isn't Reagan and probably never will be. But he knew Reagan was a good president, so I'll take a guy who at least wants to be like a good president. And I'd like to experience some optimism and good feelings again like I did then. I want morning in America. I want so see people smile again.