Friday, May 29, 2009

Sotomayor Vs. The People

As the politics of the new Supreme Court Judge, Sonia Sotomayor, are beginning to warm up, I find myself just as disillusioned and possibly more jaded than I was a week ago. And there are a handful of reasons:

For starters, I don't really know much about Sonia Sotomayor, and I think that most people who claim that they do have a lot of knowledge about her either have entirely too much time on their hands or they Googled her name like most of us pseudo-political, semi-knowledgeable, and opined bloggers and news media personnel have done. And though I admit that I don't know much about Sotomayor, I find some of her statements to be troublesome. I find it worrisome that we are concerned with her background and how that will make her a better judge. I find it ethically wrong to say that she can make better judgements because of her textured and cultural life as a Hispanic woman, when bias and background should not figure into any equation or jurisprudence from the bench. But so much is askew in all branches of our government, and our character as a nation is so diluted and taken for granted, that I must admit that I am not very surprised; more jaded, but not amazed.

I do think it is wrong to favor Sotomayor or oppose her based on the political party of the one appointing the new supreme Court Judge. If it is crucial that any one branch stay nonpartisan, it would have to be the judicial branch. Not that any branches should be partisan or tainted, but it would be nice if the parties would call a truce on our judges and leave the courts as a neutral site in the war of political parties. I guess it is too much to ask that we try to maintain purity or integrity in at least one area; and I infer that there is no honor among the thieves...

I am growing tired of hearing how the nomination of Sotomayor helps solidify the base of Hispanic voters as well as shores up a small percentage of the disenfranchised women voters. I am already sick of the reports saying that to question Sotomayor on many specifics will alienate several demographically challenged voters and their paolitical party of interest, so this must be handled with kid gloves. Kid gloves? We should not be passionate or appear to zealous when deciding on one of the handful of people that can shape and change our government; and our lives, whether we want the change or not?!!? We should tread lightly so we don't upset an election that will take place in three and a half years? Is this what the nomination of a Supreme Court Judge boils down to? I suggest that someone go to Gettysburg, Arlington National Cemetery, or even the National Cemetery in Bloomfield, Missouri and look at the graves of our soldiers and decide if they died for a demographic. Or ask a widow of a soldier in Iraq on the importance of what party wins the next election. Look into the eyes of a fallen soldier's child and tell her that she lost her daddy so that a certain party can maintain power in Washington...

I will digress on the party system for now; as I wish that the politicians would digress likewise. If only the people of America could see one act of decency; an act that shows the people that someone, anyone, cares. But I am afraid that in the case of Sotomayor versus The People, that we will see the bombastic and oppressive get the oil that the squeaky wheel always desires as cowards and the apathetic sit quietly by and hope the maelstrom passes them so that they can maintain a peaceful reelection.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

I Remember

This is the blog I would have written on Monday, but I felt it wouldn't be right to rant on a day that others were sincerely honoring. But here it is a couple days later:

As I watched WW2 movies on Memorial Day, I thought about how the great men in our military have really fought to defend our freedom. For over 200 years, men and women have fought, sacrificed, and endured hardships so that the rest of us could enjoy our freedoms.

But our freedom has turned into "rights" through the process of selfishness, empathy, and politics. Those rights, in turn, have become entitlements; of which I will spare the rant, but would like everyone to think hard on the terminology used here.

This lead me to think of the hardships and sacrifices of our military people; and soon I became saddened by the thoughts of the abuse of our freedoms. I feel sad thinking about what we call freedom now; and how it seems unfair that we asked so many to sacrifice so much over the centuries. Those who fought for freedom must hurt when they see the ingratitude and the apathy so many carry around in our suitcases and briefcases.

Did we ask men to fight and sacrifice and endure so that egotistical congressmen can make ridiculous laws and regulations? Did our soldiers die so that we can concern ourselves with demographics in our political parties, while neglecting our core values and beliefs? Did our parents and grandparents die and suffer so that our government can grow so large that it redistributes our freedoms from those who believe to those who could really care less? A crooked sheriff's department in Jones County Mississippi not only infringes upon individual rights, but destroys the constitution with malice and ego. How easily do we surrender our freedom by turning the other cheek? The ACLU desires to destroy any tradition and most values that many Americans hold dear, in the name of progressive concerns and intellectual advancement; and we are so afraid of their terminology or fear having our own intellect questioned, that we stand pat as they assault real liberty. Freedom is taken out of our hands by the growth of government, but we allow it as long as the check clears the bank. Just show me the money and you can do whatever you like; regardless of the liberty and freedom destroyed. A governor in Illinois sells a seat in congress to the highest bidder, and punishment is delayed by "justice" and diluted by process; while many assume that is just how business is done, so why worry ourselves with the dirty details.

I could go on and on, but you get the picture I am trying to paint. And I am not suggesting that we all rise up in arms and start a revolution; although anyone interested in such should feel free to contact me. What I am suggesting is to think of the sacrifices and hardships of war and of our soldiers; men and women who fought for our future and for our freedom. And as we remember and think of these hardships that have been endured, we should act accordilgly and vote accordingly. We should be angered at the disrespect we show our should be heroes when we see real freedom compromised, and even more so maddened when we see the apathetic reactions to such situations. Many great men deserve better. And many great men in our future will deserve a cause bigger than themselves to defend. If we are to suffer and endure, let it be over our principles and our love of real freedom, not the self-centered and selfishness of rights and entitlements.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Taking A Week Off

There will be no blogs this week. I am taking a break; not that this is overly taxing by any means, but I need a break from blogging as I focus on a few other issues that deserve more of my energies and attentions.

Thanks for your support and feel free to read some of the archived blogs.

Have a great week!

Friday, May 15, 2009



The Sun is shining and I have a travelling jones, so there will not be much in the way of a blog today. The kids and I are gonna get out and about, and to be honest it has a been a tough enough week for most everyone; and a rant on taxes or social issues is too heavy for the day, or at least the moment.

So if you are in the mood for something heavier, read some of the archived blogs. If you are like me and want to keep it light, put on some Sister Hazel tunes and get out in the susnshine before the thunderstorms hit!

I hope everyone has a great weekend! May God Bless all of us and Thank Him for Grace!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Cheeseburger In Paradise

As my wife so elegantly put on her Facebook status today, she married a genius. I have been bellyaching about taxes for quite some time and began to lament on the junk-food tax way back when they began taxing cigarettes heavily. Actually, I'm not as much of a genius as I just like to create things to gripe about, thus my "prediction" of the junk-food tax; but don't tell my wife, I would like to remain a genius for a few minutes longer.

But being more serious now, Do you remember when the cigarette taxes began to rise? And remember how that tax was going to help take the burden off of the health care system? And remember the promises that health care would remain affordable due to these taxes?

Have these promises came to any kind of fruition? And how about the health care costs? The taxes went up on cigarettes and the tobacco industry. The price of cigarettes went up to offset the cost, negatively affecting the consumer. And little, if any, of the tax money went to offset health care cost. Mark my words, the junk-food tax will follow the same model. As will the class action suits that are supposed to help those harmed by cigarettes, not just some greasy, slick lawyers. And those who eat junk-food will have to be sequestered like the smokers are now. They will be viewed as the scourge of society. There will be signs by the doors of the hospitals warning anyone eating a candy bar, that they will have to remain twenty yards away from any entrance or exit to the buildings.

Restaurants will have "junk-food free" signs posted on their walls and offer some lousy food and pseudo-dessert "to accommodate the consumer", not to make any money. Because our current government views wealth as being unpatriotic as well as a sin... People at church will talk behind the backs of those who eat at dairy Queen: "I saw sister Betty and brother Tom walking into the ice cream joint after prayer meeting this morning. I guess they didn't hear the pastors wonderful sermon on the excess of sugar and Jesus...Me? Oh I only eat a little sugar, and it's for my blood condition...of course not, I wouldn't go into one of THOSE places. I have a nephew who is a little shifty, as well as non-denominational, who buys mine for me...I'm no sinner..."

Of course this will be the case until they begin to tax fatty foods. Then the entire south will shut down. The IRS will raid our homes looking for Crisco or an old FRY-Daddy. We will have to buy french fries and fried chicken in "speak easies". We will have to know the secret knock or the password, "Love that Chicken from Popeye's" just to get into any place serving good old comfort food.

But they will of course raise the taxes on alcohol so high by then that if you add in the tax on sugar, Bananas Foster will be a super secret dessert priced at $2500 a serving. Only the wealthy will be able to eat this delicacy. If there will be anyone left with more than a few bucks in their pocket. And this will be only if the bananas are grown in Mexico, our forced trade partner. Otherwise, even the wealthy wouldn't risk the punishment or pay the extra tax.

Of course I am being a little facetious and sarcastic; but I am not certain as to what extent. If I am the Nostradamus of all things taxed, who knows how much of these fictional scenarios could come true. And if I am correct in my prognostications, it is not due to my being an economist. It is due to my perception that the government, as well as many people, have the wrong idea about government.

And that view is that our government is a business. Nothing could be farther from the truth. We did not become independent of England so we could become incorporated; We became independent because we had a hope and a desire to become something bigger than ourselves. Our forefathers had a vision of what this land could be and a vision of what freedom really was; what it looked like and felt like. But now we are heading towards a bondage worse than that of England's yoke 200 years ago. We are taxed by an oppressive government who does not represent us or our philosophies; and our oppressors were created by our greed, apathy, and corruption. We have built ourselves a gilded cage made of tax percentages, deficits, and broken promises. We have voted in the scoundrels and supported wrongdoing while we point the finger of blame at an opposite party or philosophy.

And it didn't get this way over night. Our government didn't begin at such a monstrous size as it is now, nor did it have the power it does now. And the people in office then did not want it any other way. The power ahould be in the hands of the people, not the ability of the government to provide over-priced and ineffective care as a drunken nanny may give her children on a Saturday night. We believed in the power of ourselves and the ability of the individual to became whatever they wanted and worked to become, not to live off of handouts, litigations, or government subsidies.

But our freedoms were surrendered a little at a time. When a crisis develops and we would rather someone else, or the government, fix things, we surrendered a little freedom. And each crisis that occurred and we looked beyond ourselves to solve such crisis, more freedom was devoured by whomever we surrendered it to. The more comfortable and apathetic we became, the more freedom we allowed to slip from our hands. We vote on issues and legislation without understanding the jargon; we lose freedom. We cast a ballot not knowing about the person, but realizing their party; more freedom wasted and lost. We drink the Kool-Aid and walk around with our heads in the sand, pretending that the problems are someone Else's; freedom surrendered.

All too often we forget history or trust blindly so that we don't have to involve ourselves. We have little concern for the future of our children or our great nation...

And I realize that I have gone into a full blown rant. I get so worked up, I forget what I began writing about. I never learned the brevity is the soul of wit thing...but I do know that I started out bragging on my prediction and gloating at the fact that my wife finds me brilliant today; and I desire to get back to that point, as she may come to her senses at any minute.

But I do ask that you consider ALL things as we move forward, at least chronologically forward; the rest remains unseen. I hope something in my rant causes us to think about things that can affect us and to reevaluate our priorities.

And in the meantime, go have a smoke, a beer, and a Snickers while you can still afford them; Cheeseburger in Paradise may not just be a song, but an anthem to the mega-wealthy, in our nations future.

Monday, May 11, 2009

One Reader Writes

A few days ago,a reader posted a comment asking for a discussion on interracial dating/marriage, should you discuss birth control with teens, and teens in regard to starting dating. The comment was that these topics came up in some conversations and are topics of interest to some of the readers of this blog. I sincerely want to write about things that cause us to think, and have expressed my desire for this blog to have a sense of purpose. I also want to do my best to answer questions and discuss topics that are not only relevant, but topics that are of interest to the readers. With all of that being said, I will do my best to give my two cents on these topics. Feel free to add any comments or start any discussion, whether you agree with my views or not. Leave comments here or at The Readers of The Self-Inflicted Blog, on Facebook. It is an open group that anyone may join:

I will begin with the third topic first: "Teens in regards to starting to date." I don't feel that there is a set age for a teenager to begin dating. I think the age depends on the maturity of the teens involved, as well as the character of the teens involved. Teens wish to be treated as individuals and hate to be lumped together as a group, and just called teens. Maybe not in matters that generalize a demographic, but in matters that would generalize individuality. My kids are two years old and five years old, and already hate to be lumped together as "you kids"; but prefer to be addressed as individuals. So acknowledge the teens individuality and consider dating based on their individual maturity and their personal character. When we give the kids a magic age of sixteen or eighteen, they can feel like it's just another rule. Encourage kids to make well thought out decisions and to look at all of the causes and effects of their decisions; based upon their ability and maturity. This will better develop character.

On a side note, be aware of what your kids watch on television. Many of the "kids programs" and Disney stuff can cause some kids to grow up too fast; or at least pretend to grow up too fast. My five year old is very susceptible to shows like iCarly, where preteens and teens talk entirely too much about dating and breaking up and throw words like boyfriend and girlfriend around way too much for my taste. Ive seen some of the Hannah Montana junk and it's dangerous to some kids as well. They place kids in positions of career, responsibility, and relationships without ever teaching them anything of value. Many of the shows have kids and adults living vicariously through the other; never focusing on the reality of relationships or dynamics of reality. These shows can be counterproductive, depending on what and how you teach your children...and that's just the condensed version of my views in this matter.

The next topic of " Should you discuss birth control with teens?": I believe the answer is yes; especially if the teen asks about the issue first. My wife and I believe that if a child is old enough or inquisitive enough to ask a question, then they deserve an answer. We try to raise our kids with this philosophy. Now the depth of the answer depends on the maturity of the child, obviously. There is no need to confuse or muddy the waters, nor is there any reason to cause any child, or person, to feel dumbed down by any answer that they may receive.

I have done youth ministry for over ten years and I feel that there are no taboo topics to discuss with teens, especially if they are doing the asking. I believe that you must use discretion as to when and how to introduce some topics, all things have a time and place, but I feel that there should be no topic that cannot be discussed.

A topic like birth control is no different. I do feel that it is a topic that can be discussed in general with teens, but when it involves specifics or more personal talk, they are best advised to take this up with their parents; and I would advise the teens to do such. But all kids do not have the luxury of caring or understanding parents, and I would treat each case personally and individually.

As to my opinion of birth control for teens, I always teach from an abstinence point of view. I realize that that may not be very pragmatical, but I believe it is Biblical, and the Bible and God is where I get my wisdom and guidance. But to just tell a kid that they should not take birth control and that they should just practice abstinence is not enough. These are personal, serious issues that cannot be looked at or taught as just another rule to follow with no real reason for the "why" to follow. You have to focus on the relationships. You have to teach about love. Without the relationship with God and without love, all of our acts are reduced to merely acts that are performed in order to satisfy a dynamic of our psyche. I realize that I sound "old-fashioned" and maybe close-minded to some, but I have found these things to be true in my life as well as in the life of others. And it really isn't a matter of narrow-mindedness in my opinion, it's what is best for the kids.

Teen pregnancy is a big problem. And the ages of pregnant moms get younger and younger. I have witnessed c-sections on eleven year old girls; on more than one occasion. An eleven year old's body cannot handle birth control; at least not healthily. Kids have to be taught about relationships, and no more important relationship than the one with a loving God. We are advised and commanded to wait until marriage for reasons that God reveals and teaches, not just because someone said so; and abstinence should be taught from that perspective.

I have also told pregnant teens that being pregnant and having a child is no sin; so enjoy and love the child. The premarital sex is the sin that was committed; regardless of the pregnancy. Don't let a social stigma burden you. We all sin, some sins have more serious repercussions, but we all have sin. Take it to God, focus on your relationship with Him, and allow Grace to work in your life. Nothing is worse than treating an unwed mother like they are a scourge on society; and little more is hypocritical.

As for the question of interracial dating/marriage, I cannot find it anywhere in the Bible or in my quiet time with God, as to where interracial marriage is wrong or a sin. I have actually had a preacher tell me that he believed it was a sin and gave a couple of verses; but it was easy to see that he was trying to rationalize his own sin and prejudice. God warned the Jews not to marry outside of Jews at "that" time because He knew that marrying pagans would lead to practices that would dilute their worship and affect their relationships with God. And I guess that the preacher ignored the entire book,"The Song of Solomon"; a romance/love story between a Jewish king and a Shulamite servant; who was black. But prejudice is ignorance and if you practice it, it clouds your view of the truth.

On the modern interracial relationship; the view I take depends on the maturity and character of the individuals involved. I realize that it is beginning to sound like a cop-out, but I am sincere in my approach to serious issues. It would be more difficult to encourage interracial dating to someone who is not mature enough to handle the extra dynamics that are involved in an interracial relationship; but by no means can I teach or advise that it is wrong. But because something is permissible doesnt make it beneficial, to simplify some words from Paul. But it is also difficult to tame the heart in matters such as these. There is fine line sometimes, as there are in any issue.

Interracial relationships are not for everyone, but for many it is not an issue that causes problems. Geography, culture, community, and the like, are more highlighted sometimes, but minimal in other situations. But never is interracial relationships to be considered sinful or not acceptable. We should teach and advise against prejudice, and true love has no hint of bias; in our relationship with God as well as others. God can certainly have the mate He chooses for you to be of a different skin color. And we are certainly capable of loving someone for who they are, not loving basd on a skin tone.

I realize that these are general answers/opinions to some hot topics; but time and space won't allow for much more depth. but notice that all of these things, as well as all things in our lives, involve relationships; both with God and with others. Don't ignore or forget the lesson that Jesus tried to teach those He encountered, over and over.

Maybe this will get the ball rolling and open up some discussions. I hope I was clear and concise. If not, feel free to ask questions; and feel free to leave any comments you wish!

Friday, May 8, 2009

Speaking of Athletes; The New Political Party of the U.S.A.

So the banking industry needs more money...

If you want to read about dirty politics, follow the story of the National Hockey League Team, Phoenix Coyotes. It appears that the team is filing bankruptcy after failing for 13 years or so to make hockey work in the desert. No big surprise there; at least no surprise to anyone except the NHL big-wigs. But back to the bankruptcy, a man named Balsille, who developed the blackberry technology, has stepped in and offered to buy the team if he can move the team back to Canada, and most likely Winnipeg. This will be Balsille's second attempt at buying a team. But the NHL and Gary Bettman are blocking any move made by Balsille, again. It seems that while all money is good money to Bettman and the NHL Board of Governors, Balsille's currency somehow is not wanted. And there are reasons too numerous to list here. But back to the bankruptcy thing again; Phoenix's man, Moyes has filed for bankruptcy and balsille has offered to step in and take care of the creditors and purchase the team, but wait! Now Gary Bettman and the powers that be are tying to force Moyes out of his position of running the Coyotes, ala Obama and General Motors; but Bettman now says that Moyes has no power or authority to file bankruptcy because the NHL has been running the Coyotes since November and they are the authority. This comes three weeks removed from the NHL and Bettman denying any part of the hockey operations in Phoenix; after some Governors worried about some foul play.All this in an effort to keep Balsille from attaining any leverage in the league. The politics of pull. And you thought only politicians could have things both ways! And how can a sports team be ran by the executive branch of the sports league? And how can justice, fairness, and a competitive market exist with such interference and bias from the powers that be? I'm sure those who read my blog often can see where I am going with this, and how I detest this sort of thing. So I will hold back on the parallels of the governing bodies, but you may want to follow this story; it is a very interesting story. Oh yeah, you will have to look hard for many details or unbiased reporting on the Coyotes ordeal; bettman and the NHL control what can be said about the league as well as control the content each team can put on their own websites. Control the media, control the masses. Kinda scary, isn't it? And again I will digress from my political views, but you all see the writing on the proverbial wall, I'm certain.

And did I mention that Wayne Gretzky is heavily involved in the Phoenix Coyotes? Or the other scandals that have emerged from this storied franchise? And just as you can have no ill feelings toward our messianic president, you can harbor no ill towards a big crybaby like Gretzky; if you are involved in the NHL.

And speaking of athletes, who would have guessed that Brett Favre would be waffling on retirement? If it weren't so ridiculous it would be unbelievable. What's more amazing is that there will be, and has been one, teams that will want him to quarterback their team. He has cost one team a couple of Superbowls. He cost another team a head coach and a playoff birth. He is the equivalent to poison; if anyone would care to look at things realistically. His staistics are not impressive and his resume has serious credibilty issues. But his ego is so large that he punks everyone into believing his own press; that Favre is something bigger than life and able to win at any cost. I guess an incredibly large ego trumps ability and reason. And the sports media who are too lazy or biased to think for themselves totally buy into it becasue it helps ratings and polls. Sounds like our last presidential election to me. Or more like our congressional elections...

And speaking of another athlete buffoon, how about Manny Ramirez and his steroid scandal. Actually, steroid scandal is probably inaccurate since it occurs so frequently. It's not very scandalous when it happens every few weeks. Maybe it's more of an steroid outbreak; a steroid pandemic! After all, Manny merely went to the doctor for an illness and received and took some medication for his illness. No scandalous pandemic here. An athlete who makes his living off of his body, who knows his personal market value, who hires agents, public relations people, body guards, and etc. just took on blind faith, a medicine prescribed by a doctor and took the meds without any research or concern for how it would affect their body; a body that they train and condition for ultimate performance. Makes perfect sense to me...maybe some of these athletes should be banned 50 games for being ridiculous; then establish a precedent to ban politicians who are equally asinine....but back to the athletes; the most amazing thing is that people will stand behind and support athletes like Manny because of the promise and hope that their team will win, with no concern for the dire concern of the rest of the league. The purpose of the one to raise the few above the rest, trumps whatever is beneficial for the most. And you can throw principles out the window, forget heritage, and ignore the future. Again, sounds eerily familiar to me.

But back to the athletes; I propose that we make a party of athletes and have them run for our political offices. We read and hear that the Republicans are dying, just like the Democrats were after Clinton left office, so the athletic party can be our newest party. And then all of the athletic supporters(get it?!!?)can worship people and future leaders who are just as shifty, irresponsible, wishy-washy, negligent, egotistical, self-serving, power mad mavens as many of our politicians are these days. We can get out our "Favre for President" stickers and plaster them all over our vehicles. Manny for Governor, Gretzky head of Homeland Security (he would have to assign Marty McSorley as assistant and hide behind him like he did every where else he went) We could appoint A-Rod as a Supreme Court justice. Terrell Owens could be chief of staff, Kobe as secretary of state, Lawrence Phillips could be head of the CIA, so on and so forth. And theres no need to be concerned about requirements or ability; we would replace those old sentiments and traditions with worship, enamor, and blind faith. Pass the Kool-Aid please...

And I realize that there is a lot of vitriol, even for me, but I hope my point can be seen through the jaded haze of frustration. I hope that you can see more parallels to the relationship of celebrity and responsibility than my sophomoric writing allows. I hope the manner in which we dismiss our standards when it involves someone we deem ourselves to like, causes us to think of the repercussions of our celebrity worship, both now and in the future. I hope we can see that our blind faith can write a free pass to corruption, bias, and injustice. And the loss of hope, principles, and ethics will corrode the moral fabric of our society.

Of course celebrity worship in itself will not be the sole cause of an erosion of values; but I'm beginning to see that it may be at the root of it all. And a better writer with less interruptions could probably paint the picture much more clearly.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Bloom Where You Are Planted; A Treatise On The Hemispheres of Intellect and Soul

I must confess that I have not been watching or reading much of the news lately. I have said time and again, that I have to take sabbaticals from such, so that I don't become too jaded, cynical, or lose focus on some of the things that should be more important to me. It's often a matter of tending to the issues that are in my lap, so to speak; issues that I can do something about now and today, I suppose would be another way to put it. I feel that I can do things about politics, civil issues, and social ideologies, but not as directly as I can affect issues and needs of those in my more immediate proximity. Like a friend at work used to say, "Ronnie, you have to bloom where you are planted." And too many politics and the like cause me to wilt all too often.

And that is difficult for me to admit. I hate that I have such a glaring weakness and that my temperament gets the better of me in some instances. It is hard to confess that I am not always mature enough to process the news and remain in a state of mental condition as to where I can still function properly. I don't like admitting that I don't always balance political, civil, and social issues with the ministries that God has lead me in. I want to be above all of the flotsam and jetsam in my morality, for lack of a better word, but prefer to be knee-deep in issues that affect my humanity. I strive for a balance so that I can be effective in the two hemispheres of my being and in the different circle is which my life sometimes leads. But too often I fall short of one or the other.

And that got me to thinkin'...and to the realization that it is not the balance of issues that I need work on. It is the balance of what is important to me, as a person. And then my thinking reminded me of a study we are doing and how it says that how we manage our time and how we spend most of our time reflects upon what our priorities are. I understand that to basically say, where and how we spend our time shows the condition of our heart.

But it's not that simple. Oh, how I wish things were that cut and dry. For a person who struggles with gray areas and detests milquetoast, real life can cause a dilemma at times. For a person who uses emotions and thoughts to process information, real life sometimes causes a person to be at odds with themselves and their heart. The time management thing is only a slight indicator of a paradigm shift or one point on the individuals algorithm; it's not the entire make-up of an individuals being, much less an individual's soul. Cut and dry would surely simplify things; and streamlined efficiency is something many look for, whether it is in business, government, automobiles, or personal intellect.

But that streamlined efficiency comes at a cost of heart and soul when the bottom line is results. This can be looked at as indicative as to...

Wait! There I go with another fine example of Samantha's word, bombast. In trying to find solace in presenting myself to be lucid while remaining something closer to opaque, I find myself in a jumbled mess trying to explain and to function.

How often do you do the same thing? Maybe not with time management, politics, social issues, and the like but how often do we find our "insides" jumbled and misaligned? How often do we find ourselves trying to find a balance of many things and various issues?

And how do you react when you get to this point in your being? Do you neglect the spiritual for the material, or give more attention to the ministerial rather than pragmatic? Where do we compromise and how do we juggle the merely cognitive with the spiritual?

For one, I step away from the maelstrom and take a minute to pray. Then I find that there is no balance to be found, that there is no middle ground. But instead of it upsetting the cogs in my machinery, it seems to lubricate the wheels of clearer thinking. I find that there is no balance, because serving God and being obedient cannot be compromised. You either are or you aren't. You either do or you don't. There is no spiritual fence to straddle; you are in the barnyard or out in the field, no more no less.

But in that simplicity of thinking, I find it easier to delve into many more areas and feel that I am much more effective at dealing with ALL of the issues at hand, instead of trying to juggle which ones I blog about, read about, or apply to my life and the lives of my family and friends. I find that instead of doing what Ronnie wants, or thinks is best, is more difficult and less effective than following God's will; and I accomplish more in many more areas when I listen to God. The political, civil, social, and spiritual all begin to fit together and work for a purpose much larger than that of which I could write about on this page; and I find balance by trying not to balance things with my heart and my intellect. But my heart and my intellect are so fine tuned that they play a crucial role in my decision making and in my ministries...

And this would be a good place to begin wrapping this blog up, before it makes another loop and becomes redundant. Brevity is the soul of wit, and if you cant hit water in 10 minutes, then it's time to find a new well. Two lessons that I am trying to learn.

I do hope this is helpful and clear. I hope that you can catch some little something that will help you make the world of those around you to be a better place. I hope this helps someone to find peace and direction, and clarity of mind. This is not the blog I intended to write today, but I felt like it is the blog that I was very much supposed to write. Why I was supposed to write this, I am not certain. But someone out there knows and understands the reason.

So bloom where you are planted. Let God's word be the soil in which you grow and His spirit the water which quenches your thirst; then you will be able to grow without all of the manure we sometimes use as fertilizer, in our lives.

Monday, May 4, 2009

R.I.P. Jack Kemp

Here we are on another glorious Monday! Whoop-EEE!

And if you are reading this, I am assuming that you have survived the Great Swine Flu Pandemic of 2009. Or at least have survived the overpublicised fear-mongering job that the media has seemed to try to pull over on us. It makes me wonder what 'pandemic' means. Maybe it means something that affects .00023 percent of the population while frightening 98.0017 percent of the populous. But what do i know? I know I would have never considered wasting a good crisis ala Rahm Emanuel, but I really don't figure that the liberals or the conservatives had much to do with this; it merely became a ratings game for the main stream media.

Don't get me wrong, as I sem to say all too often, it is a tragic thing for those affected by the swine flu. And it is not my intention to make light of anyones tragedy. But how many people are affected by the plain old flu every year? Statistically,it is more than the number of those affected by the swine flu 'pandemic'. So which one is the pandemic or the outbreak? Seems like we need to work on our termoinology. And by the way, there is no such thing as the plain old flu. There are several strains of influenza, all of which have no cure. So let's kep things in check.

And I realize that I am about a week late on this, but I am behind on my blogging and needed a warm-up topic!

I am glad to see that the "car czar" is doing such a great job at saving the automobile industries pandemic failure. Once again, we have a mde government larger and more ineffective; but we are getting more effecient at doing it. Itonly took a couple of weeks to expose the futility of government bureaucracy. And we managed to lose a few more rights a little faster along the way. But at least we didnt lose our rights to only foreign bodies; our good old, patriotic American governmemnnt has saved us by hording most of our liberties this time around. Thank goodness they at least kept our freedoms on our own soil; even if they no longer belong to we the people.

I wonder what Big Bank or Big Business will be bailed out this week? And I wonder which Republican congressman will be outraged?!!? My guess is that it will be the one with the shortest memory; the one who forgot tht Bush started this mess and that republicans had twelve years of majority in congress and managed to do diddly-squat with it. Not that I want one parties agenda before them others, but I used to lean much more towards the Republicans. Thanks to Reagan and Bush Sr.

And also to Jack Kemp. May he rest in peace. He was one who had a lot of influence and great ideals when I really began understanding politics. He was very conservative fiscally. He didnt want a big government. He was against abortion due to what it was, not merely opposed to a concept. He never flinched on his stance or belief in supply-side economics. He rarely flinched, period. He truly cared about the poor and those down on his luck. He was prone to wordy outburst of bombastwhen his emotions ran high. He waxed populist rhetoric, but meant what he said. He went to a small college and learned a lot of things on his own. His wife has lead a home Bible study for thirty years, I have read this morning. He wsn't afraid to disagree and gave Bush Sr. fits at time; just trying to keep things in the interest of the people. And his son was a back-up quarterback for the Rams.

Jack Kemp was the man who could have been president, and we would have been better for it. But he always gave his all for the better interest of others. Our nation lost a good man this weekend. I only hope that his death will remind us of why we care about politics and people and how they should serve each other. Maybe his name being in the news again will inspire someone to form a party with his ideals and give people like me a REAL choice of someone to vote for and stand behind in the upcoming elections; elections that may be the most crucial in our country's short history.

Rest In Peace, Mr. Kemp...