Monday, December 27, 2010

Merry Christmas and a Happy Hobbitdays!

Well, it's that time again. we try to do a Christmas card every years that has a special theme. This year it is J. R. R. Tolkien theme; Happy Hobbitdays! My son, Tyler has done his usually great job at putting our families faces on Lord of the Rings Characters with a fair amount of humour. I especially liked the effort of Jesse and Amanda as hobbits trying to pass themselves off as Gandalf the White Wizard. I am, of course, old Bilbo, admiring his ring and dylan is a bruding Frodo. Ty is either Pippin or Merry and Jeff is either Pippin, Merry or Sam. Karen, Heidi and Ingrid are lovely hobbit ladies at a Bilbo's birthday celebration obviuously having a good time. You can also read our Christmas letter to catch up on the family.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Meniere's is My Nemisis

I have not blogged for some time and the predominant reason is I am suffering from frequent bouts with Meniere's Disease. I am seeing a specialist on Monday next week ans will see what my options are. Since I have not been molested much by the condition for 24 or so years until moving to Utah and taking my current job, I have not seriously considered surgery. But since I have had little relief over the better part of two months, I see surgery as a promising light at the end of a very dark tunnel. Wish me luck and pray for me.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Music, Art, Hope and Change

I have been working pretty hard as of late on my recording and sculpting. I continue to add more songs to my list of tunes for proposed CDs. I think my next blues CD has now stretched into two. Just as was the case with my “Blue Mundy” CD, I have accumulated more good material—in my opinion—than can fit on a single CD. So, I will probably pick a couple of my older blusier tunes from the Randy Mundy Band and Mundy Mundy days to touch up and include on what will likely be two distinct CDs. I would like to have at least one ready for Christmas. And, I still have the latest Mundy Mundy project with Karen and the Karen Mundy solo CD—actually a compilation of all of our songs that feature her as lead vocalist. The members of my band keep telling me I need to slow down the song writing so we can get caught up, but I can’t help it if the spirit of inspiration will not let me alone. A writer worries that the eventual writer’s block will come and he will not be able to force out a quality piece, so I feel I must strike while the iron is at least warm.

On the sculpting side, I am currently trying to get the mold done for my Joseph Smith bust. The latex part is done and I started the fiberglass outer shell last night. If I get in a little bit of work on it every day or two, I could possibly have the mold ready to cast something in roughly a week. Then I’ll post pictures of the pieces I have finished so far.

I might say here that I am beginning to have “hope” and feel that a pleasant “change” is on the political horizon. Polling seems to indicate a Republican landslide for the off-years election coming in three weeks or so. I pray that it will be the case. Thomas Jefferson once opined that—I am paraphrasing here—we, as Americans would surely make mistakes, but that we would surely recognize it when it happens and take corrective actions. I am beginning to believe that the American electorate has realized that they made a huge mistake two years ago in putting Obama and the Democrats in control of the White House and both houses of Congress. I just “hope” it is not too late.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Can You Go Back? Yes and No.

I took some vacation time this past week. I was able to do some work on my music and sculpting and then Karen, Dylan and I flew to Kansas to participate in the Mundy reunion. We had a reasonably good time. I was able to spend time with the usuals and also with the unusuals—perhaps it would be better to say the family members I do not usually or normally get to spend time with. I was able to see my brothers, Tom and Dan, and their kids and a lot of their grandkids. And I was able to see my younger sister, Janna and three of her kids—her married kids and grandkids were unable to make it this time around. My oldest sister’s—Anna, who passed away about 29 years ago—kids were represented by her two oldest kids. My next oldest sister to reach adulthood, Sharon, and her family were unable to attend. I got to play some golf with my oldest son, Jesse and his fiancĂ©e, Amanda, and my daughter, Ingrid’s husband, Jeff. We swam and barbecued, hung out, talked about old times, and went to church. I came home physically tired but spiritually refreshed.

Family is very important to an individual’s growth and development and continues to be a source of strength as you continue through life. By the same token, the individual is important to the well-being of the family. It is good to touch your base once in a while to reflect on the connections we have and appreciate who we are and who the most important people in our lives really are. Families should be for ever.

On the other hand, I also dropped in on my 40-year high school reunion which happened to be going on one of the nights I was there in Topeka and I was a bit surprised that I only recognized three guys, who happened to be brothers—twins and a younger brother, by one year—and whom I had seen a few years earlier while I was living in Kansas again for a stretch. It was nice to see them of course—we had been good friends—but, it was not a big thrill for me to be there. Just about everyone there, besides Karen, Dylan and myself, were swigging on their alcoholic beverages and chatting amicably and watching the newcomers who entered to see if it might be someone they could recognize. I faked recognizing one gal after my friend, Dave Boyles, told me who she was. It was kind of mean to put her on the spot, because she clearly had no idea who I was, but I am not above that kind of stuff if I can get a little self-satisfied chuckle out of it. I owned up to the deception though, and when I told her who I was, I was not convinced that she remembered me. Most of my very best friends, with the exception of Danny Wood (my best friend), are people I have known outside of my high school setting. They are people with whom I have shared mutual interests in music, art, literature, politics and faith. I guess I have moved on and there were no serious ties that bind in regards to school to make me very nostalgic.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Ignorance Is Blistering! (edited version)*

* (note: my earlier version of this blog posted a few days ago had some inadvertent spellcheck errors-it had Obama spelled "Osmam". Apparently a computer has a hard time telling the too apart since they both apparently are doing their best to destroy the America we know and love.)Well, it has been awhile since I blogged. What can I say? I’ve been occupied. I’ve been working and paying taxes, trying to develop my music and sculpting projects, and scratching my head—most of my hair on top continues falling out because of it, I think—about why the country is in the dire straights it finds itself in. But, it’s probably time to spout off a bit, to preserve what bit of sanity I have left. Ignorance may be bliss, but it is also dangerous and the reason, I believe, for I current state of affairs.

I read quite a bit. I read books about politics, religion, biographies, etc. and I try to squeeze in a fun read when ever I can from my favorite novelists (Jim Butcher, Terry Ratchet, and Vince Flynn, amongst others). At the moment, I am reading Michelle Malkian’s expose on the Obama’s: Culture of Corruption. It is a great book, by the way, but it has me hopping mad because it reminded me that most of the public is unaware of the stuff in this book. If they had been, the Obamas would not likely be living in the White House at the moment. Of course that would mean that McCain would be living there now and would not be a completely happy thought for me either, but that is another issue for another time, perhaps. Of course I already knew that Bark and Michelle Obama were corrupt. During the elections of 2008, I had done my homework. I read a lot about them and their connections with shady characters and radical leftist, and I wondered at the fact that the “mainstream news media” was ignoring such newsworthy stuff. If you check my earlier bogs at the time, you’ll see that I was all over Obama’s case for his friendships with a multitude of outrageous and unsavory people, so the information was clearly out there for interested people to see. However, the news media largely ignored the treasure troves of negative information on the Obama’s.

Of course I knew, or at least I thought, that it could be chalked up to simple media bias—an unconscious prejudice against conservatives by the “elite” majority of news media types. However, the recent uncovering of the “Journalist” memos shows that there was conspiracy at foot. Some of the evil—and I do mean EVIL—journalists and journalism professors were not only willing to turn blind eyes to news stories that might be damaging to Obama’o election chances, but they were also encouraging the use of slander—calling critics racists—to stifle questions from more conservative media. This clearly shows that deception is part and parcel to what the radical left—this would include a fair amount of the mainstream news media at this point—is willing to do to achieve their agenda.

Now, I have some several liberal friends. And, I believe them to be good honest people who desire the best for their fellows, and, who would not knowingly be a part of destructiveness. But, in all honesty, they tend to be prejudice in their liberality. For example, they will refuse to believe that conservatives are caring and non-prejudice. An extremely liberal friend of mine asked me before the election, in a slightly superior tone, if I were ready to have a black man as president. Of course, the implication was that, as a conservative (and obviously a bit racist), I would be uncomfortable with a “black man” as my president. My response was that I would be more than happy if I had the choice of a “black man” like Thomas Sowell—one of the most brilliant minds in America today—but that my aversion to Obama was because of his obvious radical leftist background and his abundant connections with unsavory characters.
Liberals also tend to be extremely ignorant when it comes to history, economic theory and who their political leaders really are. This is clearly not all their fault due to the agendas of left-leaning college professors and the negligence and conspiratorial efforts of the mainstream media. But, it dose not free them from the obvious responsibility they have as voters to become informed. I think enough red flags have been waved by non-mainstream media to get their attention. The negligence of the Obama administration’s justice department to be evenhanded with the New Black Panther voter intimidation case and the SEIU beating of a black Tea Party member case screams for attention by morally superior liberals. And what about the ACORN travesty? This leftist organization which gets 40% of its income from the federal government and is tied at the hip to the Obamas is constantly involved in voter fraud cases and was recently shown to have endorsed the scamming of the government to help fund teenage prostitution rings. Then there is the recent uncovering of memos in respect to doing end runs around congress—a favorite pastime of the Obama administration—to give amnesty to illegal immigrants. No matter how you feel about the amnesty issue, you should be able to see that such machinations would be wrong.

It is time for my liberal friends to educate themselves, to read a few books by conservatives, like Michelle Malkin, who are doing their homework and listen to some conservative radio talk, like Glenn Beck, who has doing amazing research. They need not be afraid of Fox News. You can study other sources of information as well. Study and Compare. As they say, “the truth will make you free”. If enough people know the truth, and act upon it, it might keep us free as a nation.

Friday, June 4, 2010

The Fool on the Hill

Paul McCartney has disappointed me. “Sir” Paul was at the white House this past week to entertain and receive the Gershwin award from President Obama. Paul tastefully sang his Beatles hit, Michelle, to the first lady, but then un-tastefully took the opportunity to throw a cheap shot at President George W. Bush, suggesting that the ex-president did not know what a library was. What possible reason could Paul McCartney have had to say such a stupid, inappropriate and awkward thing about Mr. Bush? As far as I know, Bush has never insulted Paul McCartney. Frankly, I’m pretty tired of the “Bush is a Dummy” nonsense from critics on the left. Do we know how many books Paul McCartney has read? Did he get an MBA from Harvard? Has he ever been entrusted to fly a fighter jet by the US government? Fighter pilots are not normally nitwits, but it seems to me that most of the people in the entertainment industry are. Don’t get me wrong. I think that Bush was less than brilliant in respect to spending and schemes to get a long with liberal democrats on a number of issues, but there is nothing he has done or said that has demonstrated less intelligence than Al Gore, John Kerry or Barack Obama.

I suspect that Paul McCartney was only trying to ingratiate himself to Obama and other the other entertainers at the awards affair, but his clumsy attempt to be cute—he obviously had been thinking long and hard, maybe days and weeks, on how he might work the library comment in there—did not cut Bush as much as it hurt his own image. You expect such ignorant behavior from the likes of Kanye West and Bill Mahr, but not so much—at lest I would not have—from Paul McCartney. Obviously, I attributed more class to him then he deserved. I guess my musical hero, Paul McCartney, is just one more self-important entertainment knucklehead.

Seriously though, why do these people think they know anything or have special insight into politics? And why do they always have to deride the intelligence of those they disagree with? Granted, I just referred to nitwits and knuckleheads, but let me clearly state that it is their ungracious and hateful language that supports my opinions. As far as I know, most of these folks are high school graduates at best. I have suspected for a long time that people in the art and entertainment industries are afflicted with several self-image problems which compel them to act as they do. I think that many are driven to their field of employment because they want people to love them and they want to feel accepted. Occasionally, you see people turn away from the spotlight because they determine that there are other things more important than self-aggrandizement and being in the public eye, but more often it seems that entertainment folks feel a need to be accepted by their peers and keep crawling to the top. Since the movers and shakers in the industry are mainly radically left in their politics, it stands to reason that the up-and-comers are going to want to join in the fun with the “me too” mentality. Even if they are not all that secure in their own political beliefs, they will go along to get along—this is clearly the same case with the news media and the education systems. They might actually believe the tripe, but it is clearly to their benefit, career wise, to believe it. Along with that, you have a group of people who have seemingly fallen into financial success with obvious feelings of inadequacy, who deep down do not believe they deserve it. The natural response to such feelings, as I see it, is to try to be especially liberal in your social and political beliefs. They often live immoral lives, from a traditional perspective, but they crave morality on some acceptable level. They think, I must be a good and deserving person because I am concerned about “AIDS”, or ”The Planet” or “The Oceans” or “I’m a Liberal!” Logic never enters into it, so ad hominem attacks from the left, like McCartney’s, are the norm.

So, I am disappointed in Paul McCartney. I have always liked his music. The Beatles were my heroes when I was a youngster. Clearly, John Lennon was the better lyricist of the two songwriting partners and probably the greater intellect in my opinion, but I always thought that McCartney was probably a good and decent person as well as a talented musician. I still feel the same way about his musical talents, but I guess I have to rethink the “good and decent” part. He behaved like an ass and I calls them as I sees them. In fact Paul acted the Fool on the (Capital) Hill.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Beck's Founding Fathers Fridays

Lately, Glenn Beck has been doing specials on his television show each Friday concerning America's "Founding Fathers" and the history about them that is not taught to our children any more. I was actually riding on that bandwagon quite awhile ago. I planned to do a book of short historical vignettes about Leadership and the true leaders, in my opinion, who showed it. It was a couple years ago that I started posting them on this site to let people check them out. One of the early ones was about George Whitefield. He seemed to me to be an historic figure of great import in America, but of little renown in today's history books, and deserving of a place in my little book and blogs. A couple weeks ago, to my great pleasure, Beck focused one of his Friday specials on George Whitefield. It was sad to see how many people in the studio audience had never heard anything about him, but it was satisfying to see that Glenn and his guest historians felt much the same as I do about Whitefield and his contribution to the founding of our nation. So, since he was a topic on one of my favorite programs I decided to post my Blog on George Whitefield a second time.

There are some today that reject the notion that religion is, or should be, an important element of the American experience. They may even deny the importance of religion in the founding of our nation. Of course the fact is that religion was paramount, not only as a motivator to colonize America, as in seeking religious freedom, but as an empowering agent, convincing our ancestor's that they were compelled to create this nation by Divine inspiration. Thus I offer my third installment of Profiles of leadership in America:

George Whitefield
December 16, 1714 - September 30, 1770

The American Revolutionary War was fueled by various differences of opinion between England and its American Colonies. For example, taxation without representation is accepted as a major contributor to the harsh feelings held by England’s American colonists. However, religion may be as big a contributor to the war as any thing else, and traveling preacher George Whitefield may have unwittingly helped to prepare the way.

Since the time of Henry VIII when the Church of England had broken from the Roman Catholic Church, many other variations of Protestant Christianity splintered away from it (The Church of England). From the Anglican Church came the Puritans (Congregationalists and Separatists), Presbyterians, Baptists, Quakers, and Methodists. Each group dissented from an earlier dissenting group until there remained less and less common philosophical ground amongst the various Protestant Faiths and even less good will from one group to another. By the early 18th Century, North America had become a place where religious misfits such as Roger Williams and William Penn and their various followers could worship as they wished without persecution. America was becoming a hotbed of religious dissent.

George Whitefield, born December 16, 1714, in Gloucester, England, became a preacher in the Church of England and leader in the Methodist movement. Though he was not particularly physically attractive—he was severely cross-eyed, judging by portraits of him—Whitefield was a gifted and passionate orator with a penchant for theatrics, often reenacting scenes from the bible during his sermons. Because of a poor economic background, his education at Oxford was tuition free in return for working as a servant for other students. After his ordination he preached throughout England, establishing several churches in his name. Whitefield was a follower of the Wesleys’ Methodist teachings but later condemned John Wesley’s doctrine of “free grace” becoming the acknowledged leader of “Calvinist Methodism.”

In 1732 George Whitefield came to Georgia acting as the catalyst of the “Great Awakening” in the American Colonies. In the age when traveling across the Atlantic was anything but easy and comfortable, Whitefield was indefatigable, crossing over the Atlantic seven times. He traveled up and down the colonies preaching his evangelical message, often in the out of doors, to thousands and thousands of rural Americans—an obvious precursor to modern stadium preachers and evangelists—who thirsted for the religious guidance that the Anglican Church was unable, if not unwilling, to provide. Whitefield’s message and his style of delivering it impressed many thoughtful Americans, including young Benjamin Franklin who, though he disagreed with Whitefield on some religious tenets, became a close friend, helping him with publishing. His colorful and powerful oratory and his willingness to preach repentance to the leaders of the Anglican Church made him both the most popular (to the dissenting masses) and most unpopular (to the Anglican leaders) religious teacher of his time. Whitefield also organized numerous schools and established the Bethesda orphanage, but he is equally noted for contributing to inter colonial unity. His attacks against the State’s official church and his travel throughout the colonies helped create an alliance of dissenters from New England to Georgia.

A few decades later the majority of Americans would not only largely reject the religious dictates of the Church of England, but would also reject the economic and political dictates of the government of England as well. And with George Whitefield as a possible example of righteous indignation, patriots like John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, and Benjamin Franklin would, with evangelical zeal, call for independence. Just as George Whitefield was able to do with the religious-minded, Franklin and his friends were able to unite the diverse and seemingly at-odds American colonies to a common purpose. Though they may not have intended to start a revolution, George Whitefield and religious leaders like him may have started the colonies in that fateful direction.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Randy Mundy: Shows

Randy Mundy: Shows: "Upcoming Shows
Randy Mundy & The Mundy Mourning Blues Band Benefit Concert
Friday, May 14, 7:30 p.m.
Bring your Family and Friends and enjoy one of the best bands in Utah.
Lehi East Stake Center
900 N 1200 East
Admission: Cans of food to be shared with families in our area.
Bring a snack to share with friends at the concert.
Event sponsored by the 11th Ward high priest group."

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Back in the Website Saddle Again

I finally have my music and art website up and running. A few years back, we had a, for various reasons, it went by the wayside. This site,, is devoted to my music and art works. If you are a fan of my music, whether from solo years, the years performing with my wife, Karen, as "Mundy Mundy", or with my current band, "Randy Mundy & the Mundy Mourning Blues Band", you will be able to listen to tracks from my CDs and see where we may be playing next. I am hoping that you will also eventually be able to see pictures and, perhaps, video from our live shows. If you are a fan of my sculpting, you will be able to see what projects I am working on and view pictures of my work. We also hope to offer merchandise for purchase on line: CDs, tee-shirts, posters, castings of my sculptures, etc. So, drop by the site and see what we have. That's

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Let's Roll!

Well, the optimism I felt for our future after the special election to fill Teddy Kennedy’s Senatorial seat took a blow after the Obamanists pulled the irregular stunts in getting their “health care” “legislation” “passed” recently. I have to admit that I failed to foresee such brazen disregard for public opinion, even by the radical left. It surely proves what I have expected for a long time: The democrat party that my father embraced is dead. The left has successfully co-opted the democrat party, along with the vast majority of the news and entertainment media. Of course it has been obvious during all of my 58 years on the earth that those institutions were left-leaning, and it has become more apparent during the last three decades that they have been making significant strides, but the progressives’ advances, exposed by the last couple of elections, have truly blown my mind.

The 2008 elections were a critical point. The whiners and crybabies on the left had only been a nuisance up until then. They slowed the growth of conservative philosophy in the general public and retarded a return to the application of the principles adhered to by our founding fathers, both by weakening our school systems via the teachers unions and screwing with our legal system via the ACLU and other anti-religious groups. Now, with the huge majority the progressives hold in both legislative houses and a bare knuckles socialist presidential administration, we are in real trouble. As a famous preacher has said, Americas’ chickens have come home to roost.” I think our country, if not the U.S, Constitution, is truthfully hanging by a thread. We can only pray that Obama will not be able to drag the Supreme Court another vote to the left before we can elect a conservative administration again.

Clearly, the American public has been fiddling while Rome has been burning. The Tea Party movement shows that a bunch of us have come to a great awakening, but there are many more who need to have a “come to Jesus” moment in their lives. There is a dire need for some positive hope and change. I am sure that there are members of the democrat party who are beginning to realize that their party is no longer one that has America’s interest at heart. America needs patriotic and conscientious democrats to abandon their sinking ship. I am equally sure that, by this time, there are a great number of independent voters who recognize that their vote for a "change" in the status quo and some ethereal "hope" was a big mistake. I certainly hope this is the case. And, I hope that republicans who have tried to hedge their bets in the recent past, by trying please the media, by abandoning conservative principles, by trying to get along, and by trying to be democrat-lite, will recognize their folly and repent. If not, we are in Big, BIG, Trouble. The Obamanists are leading us down a road to fiscal and social bankruptcy. I predict that, if we are unable to brake our fall quickly, we will necessarily become the pathetic nanny state the progressives have been dreaming of for over a century and we will have a socialist government designed to perpetuate dependency and a one-party system for a very long time to come.

After the stock market crash in 1929, we flirted with progressive philosophy on a large scale. The result of FDR’s machinations was a run-of-the-mill recession turned into a 14-year "Great Depression". America pushed back after the war and retarded the progressive social onslaught. We had decades of economic growth and pride in a more socially conservative philosophy and world perspective, becoming the world leader and foremost example of capitalist might, but the progressives did not go to sleep. They regrouped and continued to chip away at America's social fabric. Progressive policies decorated with well-meaning verbiage, like “The Great Society”, The War on Poverty” and “Social Justice” have snaked back into our society and weakened our resolve to be self-sufficient and morally and spiritually strong. Today, we are on a similar path to the one we trod in the 1930s. The progressives are going full speed ahead and damning the torpedoes. We have only a small window of opportunity to get back on the path that our founding fathers started us on two and a half centuries ago.

As I said at the beginning of this blog, with recent events in D.C., my optimism has taken a hit, but I am not without hope. More and more of our brothers and sisters of conservative bent are standing up and making their voices heard, and proselytes to our beliefs are joining our ranks daily. We need to keep up the momentum. The challenge is before us. Let’s Roll!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

To the Devil with Progressive Politics!

Today in our priesthood meeting we discussed the “free agency” of mankind and the opportunity that free agency, or the right to choose and act upon our choices, gives us to progress and become the best that we can be. Freedom of choice is a concept that many in Christianity embrace as God’s gift to mankind. The reason for this is that Christians are required to live by faith and that faith in Christ will save us from damnation. It is not surprising then to find that many people of faith in America cherish our founding fathers’ intentions of constructing a government that would protect the individual’s personal freedom and offer opportunity to pursue happiness as they perceive it. This is why many in the politically conservative groups across the country tend to be religious conservatives in the Judeo-Christian tradition. A goodly portion of Tea Party activists, for example, appear to be religious conservatives, who want to protect their personal freedom in the face of what they see as a concerted onslaught against them from the liberal and progressive leadership in the White House and both houses of Congress.

As a Mormon, or a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, I believe that all mankind lived with God as his spirit children before this earth life. Even then we enjoyed free will. We are taught that there was a council in Heaven before we came to this earth, where opposing plans were presented concerning our future earthly existence. Mormons believe that the eternal principle and purpose of God’s creation was that his spirit children would come to earth to gain a physical body, and to gain experience and to grow to be like our Heavenly Father, to continue in the eternal work of creation. In this great Heavenly council Lucifer, a son of the morning, proposed a plan where he would enforce God’s will on His spirit children during their earthly sojourn, so that none would be lost and all would return, thus Lucifer would receive great honor. The other plan proposed at the great council was by our elder brother who we know as Jesus Christ. Jesus proposed that mankind be allowed their free will to choose to follow God or to follow Satan. Now Christ understood that this was essentially our Heavenly Father's will, that mankind would need be able to fail in order to truly progress. The only way to grow and become greater would be by struggling to overcome obstacles and building upon failure. He understood that true repentance, after sin, would generate the faith necessary to become Christ-like or God-like, which was our Heavenly Father’s ultimate goal for us. Christ would be the Savior of mankind but the glory would be the Father's. Justice and mercy would be work together.

We believe that John the Revelator referred to this pre-earthly council when, in Revelations he describes a “war in Heaven” and the “Dragon” gathering a third of the stars of Heaven after him. In essence, a third of God’s spirit children exercised their God-given free agency and chose to follow Lucifer. According to our church doctrine this group was cast out of heaven for rebellion against God’s will, and that they are on earth with us to tempt mankind, to provide a necessary opposition for us to work against. We believe that there is a need for opposition in all things, just as it is an eternal natural law that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. For example, the force of gravity is, ironically, needed for us to work against to propel us upward and forward. If there is not a possibility of failure, there is no real possibility of success and growth.

I had often wondered when I was younger why anyone, with the great knowledge that Lucifer and his followers had of the power of God and His intentions for the welfare of His creations, would choose to oppose Him and insure their ultimate damnation or stop their own progression. Satan had to know that he would ultimately be defeated. He had to know that it was not in his self interest to get into a contest of wills with his creator. As I meditated on this over the years, I later came to realize that true evil is not being able to resist temptation. Where basic logic would suggest ultimate failure, a truly wicked individual would fall to the temptation of feathering his own nest against all odds. Our prisons are full of persons who try to play against the odds, to get what they want, to live off the fruits of others. The temptation to steal and destroy to feed their physical desires is more than they seem to be able withstand. That being the case, it would stand to reason that the most evil one, Lucifer, or Satan, would have the least amount of self control of anyone. In this world we live in, someone who has a conscience and suffers shame will generally confess and try to make amends for bad behavior when they are caught or their sins are exposed, while truly evil persons will either never break character and confess, even when there is no doubt, or they will admit their actions with pride.

To a great degree, this is what we might call human nature, the pursuit of self interest at the expense of others. We of my faith believe that we chose to come here to earth, with the express purpose of taking on flesh and overcoming it, or overcoming “human nature”, to learn by faith to be unselfish and to grow to be God-like, to ultimately prove ourselves worthy, through repentance and the atonement of Christ, to share an exalted existence with our Father in Heaven. But this would not have been possible unless we chose to do it. If we had been coerced to do good we would never truly have learned or gained anything. We would not have sinned but we would not have grown.

Since this concept of freedom of choice is so fundamental to Judeo-Christian philosophy, it should be easy to understand why communistic, socialistic and progressive political ideas hold little attraction for politically conservative Christians and Jews. Progressives will surely argue that governmental social safety nets are needed to help those who are unable to help themselves, that it is our “Christian duty” to even the playing field, for the rich to share the resources with the poor. This is actually pretty ironic, since most progressives would never tolerate religious expression in government activities. I think most of us (Christian Conservatives) would agree that we have a responsibility to care for the poor and needy, perhaps even more if we are affluent. In fact, the truth is that statistics show that conservative Christians are much more likely to donate and give to the poor and needy than non-religious Americans. We do not have to be coerced by the Government to do it and we do not want to be coerced to do it. Because of our beliefs we see government mandated health insurance as an evil. Such takes way our free agency. We are convinced that when progressive government policies, though well intentioned, are forced on the American people to protect them from failure, will weaken us and created more and more dependency when we need to develop self reliance and honest respect for one another.

Progressives need to realize who they are dealing with and what our goals, as a religious people, are. We want to do the right thing because want to do the right thing, not because we are forced to do it by a government mandate. Cradle to the grave entitlements from nanny state governments are as evil as the plan that Lucifer came up with. No matter how well-intentioned proponents of progressive policies are, the result of their further implementation will be disastrous for our nation. Indeed, such trends have already taken a substantial toll, damaging large portions of our society. The idea that nobody gets lost or loses is an evil lie. An unfettered progressive government will continue to reduce us to unproductive, uninspired, dependents, unwilling to take chances and reach our potential as individuals and as a nation. The old adage that the road to Hell is paved with good intentions is especially appropriate in this case. And, we as true conservative Americans in the mold of the founding fathers need to reject any politicians who want to embrace the current status quo and seek out the politicians who understand who we want to be and who we need to be as a nation. Do I hear a big “Amen” ?

Sunday, January 31, 2010

I'm Beginning to Feel Optimistic!

It’s been a while since I last blogged and I have a free afternoon this Stake Conference Sunday, so here goes…

I am starting to have some positive feelings about the future. I have to admit that I have been feeling pretty pessimistic since the 2008 elections. Having studied American history, it was obvious to me that we were in for some serious trouble. I have blogged in the past about the similarities between the mistakes made during the great depression and the current government policies and it seemed clear that we were doomed to repeat history. If you are not clear on what those similarities are, you can go back to some of my earlier blogs and educate yourself a bit more. In a nutshell, in the early part of the 20th century, Americans became somewhat enamored with progressive politics. It began with Teddy Roosevelt, who, in my opinion, was well meaning and did some pretty good things—you can read my blog about Teddy and his positive accomplishments in my “Leadership In America” blog series—though you could argue strongly that he went beyond what the constitution allows for the executive branch. America’s real problems started when progressive Democrat, Woodrow Wilson, was elected President. Wilson, who political commentator Glenn Beck rightly calls an” evil SOB”, most infamously, in my opinion, brought us the “progressive” income tax and the Federal Reserve (he took us off the gold standard), segregated the armed forces and championed the League of Nations—an organization our congress happily kept us from joining—which came from the debacle that was the Treaty of Versailles, which was so badly designed and instituted that it brought on the rise of progressive socialist governments in Russia, Germany and Italy and culminated in World War II.

Though Wilson himself and his strong arm tactics became unpopular, leading to three consecutive republican presidents being elected, progressive politics tended to linger on—with the exception of Coolidge. Herbert Hoover was a progressive Republican whose efforts to spend us out of the recession that began after the stock market crash of 1929 miserably failed. Teddy Roosevelt’s cousin, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, was then elected. Because of FDR and his progressive philosophy, what should have only been a short-lived economic recession became the Great Depression, lasting a decade and a half. It took another world war to get us out of our economic mess.

Word War II and the post-war years provided the United States a world-wide market and the country was put back to work. During the years after WWII, we leaned away from progressive philosophy and we had some real prosperity. Of course, we had some serious flirtations with progressives in the forms of LBJ, and Jimmy Carter, but it looked like we had learned our lesson when a real conservative voice trumpeting the virtues of the Constitution and the political philosophies of the Founding Fathers was heard again at center stage—Ronald Reagan. But after Reagan, we failed to find a true believer to continue Reagan's efforts. His successor, George Bush, was a good man, by any account, but was only moderate at best, and he tried to hard too get along. Clinton, who sold himself as a conservative Democrat, had no real belief system, deep convictions or philosophy other than self preservation and doing what ever he needed to do to get elected and re-elected. George W. Bush was, as his father was, a very good man with good intentions and an admirable tenacity to protect us from radical Islamic Terrorists, but he also tried to get along with his antagonists of the re-emerging progressives.

Like Herbert Hoover before him, George W. tried to spend us out of an economic melt down and stock market crisis. Then, we elected another FDR in the form of Barak Obama. Like FDR, Obama has continued progressive policies, virtually aping almost every Rooseveltian move. As with FDR, we gave Obama a huge advantage of a progressive majority in both houses of Congress. The future looked pretty dim.

But then, during the first year of his administration, Obama and the democrat leadership in congress began to overplay their hands. Obama started trying to circumvent congress and grow executive power by inserting regulatory czars, paving the way, in my opinion, for eventual totalitarian power if not checked. And with congress’s help, he started government takeovers of public businesses—banks, insurance companies and manufacturing—through government bailouts—something that would have made George Washington and his brethren turn over in their graves, if not literally leave their graves and take up arms again. They also tried to ram through the federal takeover of the health insurance industry, to force all Americans to pay for heath insurance boutght from the government, and the self-destructive Cap and Trade laws—actually a huge tax increase in disguise—designed to, somehow, stop “global Warming”-a huge scam created, in my opinion, by leftists in and out of the the science community to hoodwink the world into "leveling the field" of the world's economy at the cost of American prosperity (wealth-sharing).

The cumulative effect of all this overreaching began to trouble a lot of people, it seems. Then, other things began to happen. A year ago, Fox News brought Glenn Beck over to their company from CNN Headline News, a lowly news organization with small viewership where he had begun to get a following. Beck hammered the Obama administration for it’s blatant association with radical revolutionaries, Maoists, Marxists and sundry progressive extremists, and their obvious radical agendas. Beck has since become one of the most popular televison personalities in the country. Beck has also shed light on the history of the progressive movement over the past century and shown great support for the Tea Party Movement. And there is the Tea Party movement itself. The Tea Party is representative of Americans who have begun to wake up and are longing for a return to the Constitution and the principles set forth by our founding fathers. Throughout the past year, the Tea Party and its supporters have struggled against the administration, the progressive democrat leadership in congress and the liberal/progressive news media to have their voices heard. They have been ignored and ridiculed, but they have seemingly grown in numbers and influence. They have become a force to be reckoned with. Since November, 2008, there have been several special elections held for state and federal seats, with conservatives gaining ground. The latest was the special election held to fill the US Senate seat of the late Ted Kennedy, a seat he held for almost 50 years. A little known conservative Republican, Scott Brown, was elected and killed the democrat super majority in the Senate, virtually sinking Obamcare for the immediate future. Added to that was the exposure of ACORN's corruption and its ties to the democrats and the leaks of thousands of memos from the leftist science community, exposing their efforts to cook the books in regards to the "global warming" scam. If the trend continues, and conservatives make the gains now expected of them next November, the sun may be rising on America again.

So, that is why I am beginning to feel optimistic.