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Why God Wins in a Contest Against No God

May 9, 2017

by Devin

Okay. Big topic! Yuuuuuuuge topic! Only many, many thousands of words, pages, and books have been written on this one. So why am I writing yet another one? Well, are there still any atheists out there? Yep. Even after all that has been written on the subject. So why not add a few more words to the mountain of words that have already been written? Why not, indeed?

Let me begin by saying that I came to the conclusion that God definitely exists, late in life. The reason for this is that although I had been churched in my youth, no one had ever taken the time to lay it all out for me in the way I’m going to do here. Furthermore, I did not want anyone to lay it out like this. I did not want to know the truth, because I feared that the truth might give me sufficient reason not to live my life the way I darn well pleased. In short, I was willfully ignorant. Blissfully ignorant. Until one day, I wasn’t.

Then, I wished with all of my being that I had not ignored the truth for so long. So many years of my life, wasted, chasing personal goals and getting nowhere fast. And more and more miserable with each passing year. Until finally, I could no longer ignore it. I had to get to the bottom of it. No more putting it off. No more agnosticism. No more excuses.

So I did. And here is what I found:

Reason 1:  If there is no God, then I am just a bunch of molecules behaving in a highly organized manner according to the physical laws of chemical reactions that were initiated with the Big Bang. And if that’s true, then I am unaccountable for my behavior, I am merely doing what I was bound to do the instant the Universe exploded into being (which means I cannot be judged by anyone for anything I do). Furthermore, I will continue to do what those chemical reactions cause me to do, whether I like it or not. And when I say do, I also mean think. The decisions I make, everything, are just chemical reactions. I have no soul. I have no reason for existing. No one is greater than me. No one’s opinion is any more valid than mine. And finally, there is no right or wrong. No good or evil. Just physics and chemistry doing what the laws of nature dictate.

Now stop and think about this for a moment. It isn’t really an argument for the existence of God. It is more like a reason to want God to exist. Because if God does not exist, and if everyone knew it, imagine what kind of hell this world would be then! Anything goes! If it feels good, even if it harms someone else, who cares? Do it. After all, you are just doing what the laws of physics and chemistry dictated you would do long before you ever came into existence.

And if this is true, then why do so many people choose to aim for being, at least to some degree, good? Why do the concepts of good and evil exist? Why are children born with an innate sense of justice? Chemical reactions again? And where do we get the desire to live from? Why do we care? Chemical reactions? And what about one of the fundamental tenets of Evolutionary Theory, the desire to reproduce? Where did that come from? Chemical reactions, again?

This last one is particularly difficult because if there is no God, then there never was any reason for any cluster of molecules to “want” to reproduce. Go check your chemistry and physics books and see if you can find any of them that say anything about molecules or matter “wanting” to do anything. You won’t find it. Matter behaves according to the laws of physics. Molecules behave according to the laws of chemistry. Period. Done. There is no law in either of these disciplines about anything “wanting” to do anything.

While Reason 1 still does not prove the existence of God, let me just say that it provides a very compelling case in favor of hoping God exists. The existence of God makes the Universe a whole lot more tolerable.

Reason 2: Back to the Big Bang. The one question that scientists unanimously agree can never be answered is what existed before the Big Bang? It is unknowable. No one is even working on it.

So why does this matter? It matters because according to Big Bang theory, the entire Universe was once completely compressed into a single point. A volume-less point. A singularity as mathematicians and scientist call it. In other words, it did not exist. So, from out of nothing, total nothingness, with nothing existing, no God, no nothing to cause the Universe to come into existence, somehow, we are supposed to believe it just did. And not only that, but why it did can never be known.

I don’t know about you, but that doesn’t really sound like something a real scientist who is being honest with him or herself could believe. I would say it takes a bigger act of faith to believe that than to simply believe that God exists and he caused the Universe to come into existence. Even if you go no further than that in your belief.

Reason 3: No one has yet even come close to causing life to spontaneously arise from inanimate matter.

Okay, this reason has only been available to us for the last few decades, because we have only recently achieved the level of knowledge of microorganisms and how they work that we should be able to, in the laboratory, under the most highly controlled circumstances imaginable, cause inanimate matter to come to life. Think about this. We are told, and are supposed to believe, that life spontaneously arose in our Universe simply because the odds were that on at least one planet among many billions of planets in one galaxy among many billions of galaxies, just the right conditions under which the sequence of events necessary for life to spontaneously arise were sure to occur. And furthermore, that those events did occur simply because the right conditions were present.

Okay. Fine. What, exactly, were those conditions? There have been a number of theories postulated on this one. One that most people are familiar with is some kind of primordial soup or muck where the right combination of naturally occurring organic molecules happened to be in the right place at the right time with just the right application of energy and other conditions that suddenly, just the right chemical reactions occurred and something remotely resembling life suddenly came into existence. That thing, whatever it was, was somehow motivated to make more of itself. Furthermore, it had to already have some sort of scheme for doing so, therefore it had to be a pretty complicated molecule or cluster of molecules!

But, supposedly, it was bound to happen due to the incredible number of opportunities that, by the law of averages, existed and yet still exist in a Universe that still, no one, can explain why it exists in the first place, and no one is even attempting to explain, because everyone agrees that it is unknowable. And on top of that, if it could conceivably happen by accident under the right conditions, then why have we not simply demonstrated it in the laboratory? We don’t need to wait for it to happen again in nature so we can observe it. We should be able to simply recreate those conditions in a controlled environment and make life spontaneously arise from inanimate matter. But we can’t. Even with all of the incredible technology available to us in this amazing day and age, we can’t do in a laboratory what we think happened simply by accident in nature! Really???

Right. Seems to me that it is a whole lot simpler, although maybe not nearly as much fun to contemplate, to believe that God made it happen. For those of you out there that are adherents to Occam’s Razor, God is right up your alley!

Reason 4: Geologic time isn’t even remotely enough time for random mutations and natural selection to take us from inanimate molecules to human beings. Sure, four billion or so years is a LOT of time, but it turns out, if you do the math[1], that it would take many trillions of years just for an extremely simple 200-component organism to evolve by random mutations and natural selection. The math has been done. The jury is back. The verdict is in and the case is closed. The fundamental tenets of Evolutionary Theory are so flawed they don’t even begin to account for the complexity of living organisms on Earth. The belief that eventually all the remaining unknowns and missing components of Evolutionary Theory will be discovered is a vastly greater act of faith than simply believing in the existence of God.

Reason 5: No one has ever managed, under the utmost controlled circumstances, to cause one species of animal to evolve into another. Think about this one. Humans have been using breeding techniques for thousands of years to modify successive generations of living organisms in such a way as to give them certain desired characteristics. So why is it that no one has actually started with one species of animal and continued to modify it through successive generations until the result is a new species? Forget about causing life to spontaneously arise in a laboratory, we can’t even do something so simple as taking an already living organism and accelerated natural selection by using human selection to cause it to evolve into something so different as to be an altogether different species. And yet, we are supposed to believe that it happened millions of times by chance in nature. Brutal.

Reason 6: Ever thought you had a question about God, the answer to which, no one could possibly conceive? Guess what, it has been answered. Yes. Not only has someone already thought of it, but someone really, really smart, and often many really, really smart people, have already done all the work for you and answered it. After thousands of years, rest assured, there are no new questions to be asked about God. And after just as many years, those questions have all already been tackled and answered. Just because you don’t know the answer, and can’t imagine one could exist, doesn’t mean someone else doesn’t know the answer and hasn’t already answered it. The internet is an amazing tool. Google it.

If that doesn’t satisfy you, then I suggest reading the works of some of the greatest minds to ever tackle the most difficult questions imaginable about God and world we live in. One of them is C.S. Lewis, but if you prefer someone more contemporary, try Tim Keller. Or just walk into any Christian bookstore and you will find shelves of books written by prominent Christian apologists who have answered every question of which you can think. The only reason anyone can give for not knowing the answers is not trying (or wanting) to find out.

Reason 7: The proof is out there. Yes. That’s right. If you need proof, it exists. More than one book out there has been written for the average reader that assembles all of the known information about the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ and presents the evidence in a logical order such that by the time you reach the end of the book, the proof cannot be refuted. At least, not by any reasonable person. And if you consider yourself a reasonable person, then you are left with no choice but to believe that not only is there a God, but that Jesus was God incarnate. And after all, if Jesus really existed and really was who He said He was, then it follows naturally that God must exist. Two books I know of on the subject are: The Case for Faith, by Lee Strobel and Cold Case Christianity, by J. Warner Wallace. I’ve read the second one and seen the movie (The Case for Christ) for the first one. Both are excellent.

There are many, many more reasons than these, but they are reasons that, as time has gone by, I have come to adopt as a result of my continuing search for the truth. Reading about and discussing the teachings of Jesus with Christians that I admire and respect, as well as listening weekly to sermons by pastors who have vastly more knowledge than I, have greatly broadened my understanding of God and Christianity. I would encourage anyone who wants to get to the bottom of this matter to do the same. Discovering God is a journey. You follow a path. Everyone is not on the same place on that path. You don’t have to believe everything all at once. Maybe you only decide one little thing might be true and pursue it. Over time, you gain more confidence in your belief that that little thing is true. Then maybe you start to see other things that you might be able to believe. As you investigate those, in time, you grow in your new beliefs. It takes time. It takes patience. It takes a desire to know the truth.

Maybe you are still not convinced. I get it. Letting go of something you have believed for so many years is a hurdle far too high for most people to jump. Furthermore, it is likely that not only you hold your beliefs, but you also associate with others who believe the same things you do. They are your friends. You love them. Most people don’t want to give up their friends, which is what frequently happens when someone reverses their position on this particular topic (it’s just that hot). This topic is of such a magnitude and of such great import that people don’t just wake up one day and say, “Hey, I think I’m going to believe in God now!” It takes time. For some people, it takes a LOT of time. (And for some people, time runs out first.) Don’t worry. God has plenty of time. He can wait. He is patient. He invented patience! He knows you. He loves you. And He is willing to wait as long as it takes for you to discover Him. He wants you to discover Him. But you have to come to Him. He is assuredly pursuing you, but He is God, after all.

C.S. Lewis once said, “Christianity, if false, is of no importance, and if true, of infinite importance. The only thing it cannot be is moderately important.”

I wish you the very best in your journey and I am simply glad that maybe, just maybe, you are on the path to discovering the truth.

God bless you on your journey.

 

 

[1] http://www.icr.org/article/mathematical-impossibility-evolution/

What is Conservatism?

March 29, 2017

by Devin

When I was younger, say, about 10 years younger or more, I used to read from and listen to media outlets on the left regularly. I found it to be a siren song sometimes, particularly NPR. Those NPR voices are the most soothing I’ve ever heard on radio. And the musical jingle they play for NPR News is so nerdy sounding, how could any self-described intellectual not love it? And, of course, NPR has some great programs. Who could resist listening to Dick Estell, the Radio Reader, if he or she has the time? The only person on NPR that ever irked me was Daniel Shore, who was the most overtly, egregiously, over-the-top left-wing-nutcase commentator ever to be heard over the NPR frequencies. He didn’t even try to hide his political leanings. And his analysis, well, it just plain sucked. Anyone with half a brain could see that. But there he was, every day, dropping great pearls of left-wing commentary and real jewels of political analysis on NPR’s listeners. I figured he must be there to make the rest of the news folks seem balanced, both politically, and psychologically. He passed away a few years ago, and I, well, I was still listening to NPR when it happened and I…, well, I have to admit, I thought to myself, I hope they don’t replace him with another nutcase just like him!

But in the end, I just quit listening to NPR entirely. I also quit listening to the few other left-wing talk radio shows that were still trying to survive, but were so horrible they didn’t make it. I also gave up watching the news on TV. For several years I had already given up watching anything but FOX, but then I realized FOX isn’t all that conservative, either. It just seems like it is because compared to the other television news media, it is. But the truth is, it doesn’t take much to be to the right of CNN, NBC, MSNBC, ABC, or CBS. Or even ESPN, although people don’t normally think of ESPN as a news channel. But if you watch it long enough, you may discover that ESPN is so loaded down with left-wing propaganda, it hardly seems like a sports channel anymore. So, I quit listening to non-conservative radio and I quit watching television altogether, and as for reading, well, I get all my news online these days. The Liberal bias in the media was really starting to annoy me in a big way. Mostly, I just never heard anything new or worth adopting.

About 10 years ago I starting educating myself on Conservatism (in America) because a liberal friend of mine challenged me to define it and I found that I couldn’t. You can imagine my consternation when I realized I had no good way to articulate my beliefs. Seriously. I couldn’t do it. I have since discovered that this is actually a real problem for people who refer to themselves as conservative. Go ask a politician to define it sometime. See what you get. And then there are the commentators, even Rush Limbaugh, who will tell you that it is easy to define Liberalism, but no one seems to be in agreement as to what is Conservatism.

So, for several years I kept trying to define Conservatism in terms of policy positions, but that was ridiculous. Trying to do that is like picking colors to paint your home without ever seeing your home. You have nothing on which to base your color selections. Just a bunch of feelings about how you think it should be. Of course, that is flawed because everyone has different feelings about what policy should be, depending upon the issue. It is my firm belief that the VAST majority of people who identify as conservative, do so because they realized at one point or another, that where they come down on policies is more closely aligned with those typically held by people who call themselves conservatives, or often just as Republicans, than with those held by liberals or Democrats.

The problem with going about it this way is that there are as many different combinations of policy positions as there are people who hold them. It’s a sort of circular logic. Many people who call themselves conservatives do so because they align with so-called conservatives, who call themselves conservatives because they, too, align with other so-called conservatives. What you get after enough time, with this way of defining Conservatism, is a mess!

That is when it hit me that policy positions are best defined as the emergent property of a set of values. The values themselves being something entirely separate. When I say, “best defined,” I do so because if they aren’t based on something besides personal feelings, on something concrete, separate, and well defined, then they are based on nothing to which anyone can point to and defend. So then I started trying to define conservative values, but that, too, I found to be ridiculous, because values, I realized, are the emergent property of an ideal. So then I started trying to identify such an ideal.

The ideal I found is the same ideal that our nation’s founders had. Freedom. Maximum possible individual freedom for all. Such freedom is only limited at the point where it infringes upon someone else’s freedom.

From this ideal flows all of my political values and from those values all of my political policy positions. Well, with one small caveat, I view freedom from a Christian point of view, just as most of our nation’s founders did. And those few who didn’t, still believed in God and had no problem with those who also believed in Jesus.

So, if you ask me what is Conservatism? I can easily tell you now that it is the belief in the exact same thing our nation’s founders believed, which was that humans were created to be free. And that governments are, most unfortunately, a necessary evil, that must be devised in such a way as to keep their power and interference in our lives to an absolute minimum. The Founders intended to create a federal government that served only the absolutely most essential functions necessary and no more. They were bent on writing a constitution that would accomplish this goal. It had never been done before. They had no past experience creating such a government to guide them. No ability to look back and see where the previous attempt went wrong. They did their best. They were tremendously successful, yet, they ultimately failed. What we have today, in America, is an utter failure in the eyes of our nation’s founders.

A true Conservative in this day and age is someone who wants to restore the original intent of America’s founders. Maximum possible freedom for all.

It ain’t over ’til it’s over! Hang in there! And take notes, while you’re at it!

October 11, 2016

by Devin

A good friend of mine was musing the other day about how a President Hillary would proceed on foreign policy and Obamacare, in light of how badly those two things have gone for her predecessor and where they seem to be headed. I replied to him before I had a chance to watch the last debate, but Hillary just confirmed my expectations in the debate. Here it is.

So, assuming a Trump loss, which I still don’t think is going to happen, in spite of the polls and prognostications, and particularly in light of his performance in the second debate, I am sure a Clinton II presidency would double down on Obama’s foreign intervention and policy. It has been her policy to go around the world messing in everyone else’s business and there is no reason to think she is going to change.

Obamacare would probably be amended by the Republicans to say whatever Hillary wants it to say, since the Republicans are just lapdogs for the Democrats. It would continue to fail ever more disasterously, but I doubt she would go along with any kind of replacement that might improve the situation, because such improvements would be to admit failure. So our healthcare system would continue to implode in slow motion just as it has been for some time now. Watching that one happen would be downright humorous, if it weren’t so tragic.
Now, if you know me, you know I am an eternal optimist. And my optimism sometimes leads to errors in judgement. Sometimes. I’m working on that. However, I am looking hard to find any other evidence besides polling that Trump is losing. That is all there is. Virtually every other indicator there is is saying landslide for Trump. Or at least a win. Also, I have no stock in Trump. I’m a Ted Cruz supporter. It would be fine with me if he just barely wins, so I have no reason to be so optimistic about his chances.
Since I don’t live in SC, I can’t accurately read the public political sentiment there as well as those who do, thus this past spring I failed to recognize the superglue hold Lindsay Grahamnasty has on his Senate seat and called it wrong in the primary this year. But I do have a firsthand read on one of, if not the most, left-wing cities in America, Santa Fe, New Mexico. This city is a professional cheer leading team for Democrats. As I wrote in a recent blog post, the cheer leaders are sitting on the bench staring at the scoreboard with long faces, wishing their team had a different quarterback and wanting it to hurry up and be over with. Zero enthusiasm. Zero energy.
Since the bomb dropped last Friday about Trump and his “locker room talk,” there has been no discernible uptick in enthusiasm in Santa Fe. Just a lot of dirty looks as though “that brutish man isn’t going to grab my p***y!”
You can’t see that, because you live in a state that is totally behind Trump. But I can. And if apathy for the election is this bad in Santa Fe, imagine what it is like elsewhere around the country where Dems are generally in lower concentrations than they are in Santa Fe. Demoralized. Defeated. Sure, they may be getting a little boost from the media frenzy over the “locker room talk” issue, but they aren’t about voting against Trump, they are about voting for their nominee, except that they aren’t this time.
Everyone knows that it is historically rare for the party in the WH to get a third term. Doing so is an uphill battle for anyone going up against that. Last time was GHW Bush riding Reagan’s popularity. Obama has nothing like that kind of popularity. I totally understand your argument about demographics, but for demographics to matter, people have to be excited and get out and vote. We watched the conservative majority in this country get defeated year after year by a liberal minority, because the liberal minority was far more energized. The demographics may have flipped, but the ability of a minority to defeat a majority has not and never will flip, until the minority becomes so tiny it is no longer a significant player.
Maybe I’m wrong, but a Republican majority in both the House and the Senate, along with increasing Republican majorities in over thirty state legislatures, seems to indicate that at least the Republican party hasn’t gotten that small, yet! Conservatives, on the other hand, may well be done for. Hard to say, yet.
Finally, as I have pointed out before, Obama had huge excitement and energy behind him and he barely eeked out victories both times against horrible Republican opponents. Don’t pay any attention to those idiots in the Republican party who keep endorsing, then unendorsing, then endorsing, then unendorsing Trump. They are just trying to calculate which position might best favor their chances of re-election. Endorsements have been shown by extensive research to have almost no impact on campaigns. They have mostly to do with benefitting the endorser, by riding coattails. And after flip flopping so many times, no one is taking them seriously anymore.
Anyway, I’ve already been over this ground before. You probably know all the other reasons I have for anticipating a Trump victory. If you don’t, I invite you to read other posts on this site! My prayer now is for Trump to have the ability to not defeat himself before 9 NOV. I have little confidence there, but seeing how he has responded to the latest two blows gives me hope!
Since the day I wrote this, the media has been calling the election over. Done. Trump is finished! His poll numbers are in free-fall (even though we don’t yet have any numbers from the second debate)! The Republican Establishment folks are looking for every excuse possible to abandon him and anxiously awaiting a Hillary victory! And I am thinking to myself, where have I heard all this before??? Ohhhh yeeeaaahhhh! Just a few months ago during the Republican primaries! After each and every debate and public appearance where Trump opened his mouth, the genius prognosticators in the media and the Republican Party proclaimed, loudly, “this time he’s finally done it!” He’s finished! NO ONE will vote for him now! And then there would be another primary and he would win by a greater margin than the last one.
As painful as it is watching all this take place, it is putting a spotlight on the turncoat, liberal Republicans (like Lindsay Graham, John McCain, Mitch McConnell, Paul Ryan, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera, and their media admirers like never before. Any other time, and hardly anyone would be paying attention. But this time, FINALLY, people are paying attention. All those folks who have been chuckling and rolling their eyes at the term “Republican Establishment,” as though the looney right-wing fringe really must have some kind of incredibly creative imagination, are now finally starting to have some inkling of what those who truly hold fully to conservative values have been saying for so, so long. Those Republican Establishment politicians, RINOs if you will, HAVE GOT TO GO! But in the primaries, not against Democrats!
I’ll take this opportunity to provide you with a link to a website where you can see for yourself who these people are:
And by the way, Conservative Review is a conservative website. If you think National Review is conservative, let me just bring you up to speed on this, they are not. I’d give them a grade of C-, at best. And definitely an elitist crowd that thinks it is far above you and everyone else you know. Somebody needs to take George Will to the woodshed. Just saying!
Chin up, fellow lovers of America! It ain’t over ’til it’s over! The fat lady ain’t sang, yet! Trump may be down, although I’m not so sure he is, but he ain’t out! The media is going to do everything in its power to demoralize Trump voters and make them think it is game over. Take my advice. Ignore the media. And when I say “media,” I am including FOX News. A RINO media outlet if there ever was one.

Hillary Rodham Clinton: Death of a Political Psycho

September 15, 2016 

by Devin

Eight years ago, when Hillary was ousted by Barack Obama for the Democratic nomination, I found myself intrigued by the talk among my liberal friends about the situation. Every single one of them expressed utter disdain for Hillary. Before BHO came along, though, HRC was THE stuff. She had what appeared to be a bulletproof reputation among the liberals of my adopted city, Santa Fe, New Mexico. Hillary stickers were EVERYWHERE. Then, suddenly, they weren’t. They had all been replaced or covered up with Obama stickers. The yards signs for Hillary disappeared practically overnight and were replaced by Obama yard signs. The fix was in.

“Hillary stickers were EVERYWHERE. Then, suddenly, they weren’t.”

The next thing I knew, liberals were all trashing Hillary for all the same reasons Republicans and conservatives had been trashing her for years. I thought to myself, wow! Talk about group think! As we know, BHO went on to win the nomination by a wide margin and then went on to the White House, posting marginal victories against two of the worst Republican nominees since George HW Bush.

Of course, after that, there was no love, just business between the Clintons and the Obamas. The Obama presidency was supposed to be Hillary’s time. How did this nobody from Chicago, who should have been getting coffee for Bill and his buddies, come from out of nowhere and beat her so badly? Answer: He didn’t. She beat herself. Or rather, she and her sex predator husband did. It is my belief (and since I’m no insider, that’s all it is, a belief) that the Clintons are tolerated in the Democratic Party only because of the power they wield. Otherwise, they are universally despised for their unmitigated power hunger, corruption, lying, and ineptitude. Bill doesn’t have the old magic anymore. He’s gotten too old. He’s developed a bad case of foot-in-mouth disease. Hillary’s incompetence has forced the media to go to lengths never before seen to cover it up.

Then, finally, Hillary’s time comes again. It’s 2016. This time, NOBODY is going to steal the nomination she deserves away from her. Bernie Sanders nearly did it and there is no question that he was more popular with the Democratic Party base. Before the Democratic National Convention, in good ol’ left-wing Santa Fe, for every Hillary sticker and yard sign there were two Bernie stickers and yard signs. A Trump or Cruz sticker might have gotten your car keyed. The driver most certainly ostracized from the community.

After the DNC? Suddenly, as though a switch had been flipped, there is no general election this year. At least, not in Santa Fe. Within a week of HRC’s coronation nearly every bumper sticker and yard sign in the city disappeared.

“…if they talk about politics at all, (they) do it in hushed whispers and hope someone will change the topic soon.”

I’ve lived in (or near) this town for 17 years and I have NEVER seen anything like this. When Al Gore and John Kerry were the Democratic nominees (and think about just how bad they were), every other car had a sticker supporting them and every other house had a yard sign. Just prior to the 2016 DNC, you had to search for a car or yard that didn’t have Bernie (mostly) or Hillary (not-so-many) sticker or sign. It was sheer craziness.

Now? Nothing. My circle of liberal friends, if they talk about politics at all, do it in hushed whispers and hope someone will change the topic soon. In these discussions, they just repeat the latest talking points. How they can’t believe anyone thinks Hillary will take away their guns…

What is full-on political hysteria? Answer: Santa Fe, New Mexico before the 2016 DNC. What is the perfect opposite of full-on political hysteria? Answer: Santa Fe, New Mexico after the 2016 DNC. Santa Fe, the liberal bastion of the Southwest. The city that tries every single day to out San Francisco San Francisco. The city that adores New York City as the icon of perfection. Politically dead now. Unbelievable.

Think about it like this, if you’ll pardon the football analogy. If Hillary were a football team, her cheerleaders (in this case, Santa Fe liberals) would be sitting on the bench staring at the scoreboard with long faces, the fans in the stands would be dead silent and starting to walk out, and those watching the game on TV would be flipping channels to find something else to watch.

It’s that bad.

And yet! If you go to Nate Silver’s fivethirtyeight.com website, you will see that Trump still has only a 35 percent chance of winning! All the pollsters, even though now some of them are starting to show Trump gaining in swing states, are still predicting a Hillary victory. Team Hillary’s fans should be shouting at the top of their lungs from the stands and going wild. But they’re not.

It kind of gives me the same feeling that the movie Jaws did when at the beginning the girl goes swimming at night in the ocean. Then they start playing that music. You KNOW something really bad is about to happen! Well, at least bad for Hillary and the Democratic Party.

Then, on the radio, I hear Rush Limbaugh saying the pollsters are polling the wrong people. The pollsters are polling people who voted last time around or registered voters or likely voters (not sure how they calculate that last one), but they are not polling people who, like the formerly employed, then unemployed, then no longer seeking employment or counted as part of the job force, quit paying attention to politics way back when GHW Bush broke his promise about no new taxes and got his ass kicked by Bill Clinton. The party lost them back when the Republicans starting running losers like GHW Bush, Bob Dole, GW Bush, John McCain, and finally, that incredibly poor loser, Mitt Romney.

“They are out there in numbers unimaginable to the left. The sleeping giant. And they have been awakened.

These people have been off the radar for so long the pollsters have forgotten who they are and have no idea how to sample them. These are the people who, when you drive around a normal neighborhood in flyover country, have Trump signs in their yards and stickers on their cars. The bitter clingers. The “deplorables.” They are out there in numbers unimaginable to the left. The sleeping giant. And they have been awakened.

And this time, the giant is going to crush the political psychopath of the century, Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Are we, or are we not, all created equal?

by Devin

My apologies to you if you are one of those people who fully understands what America’s Founders meant by the phrase, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal…,” that is found in the Declaration of Independence. This article was not written for you, although you might possibly discover something you didn’t know about your fellow citizens by reading on.

Nearly every American citizen of sufficient age is familiar, at least to some degree, with that statement of equality in the Declaration of Independence; yet, how many of us truly understand what it means?

It has become apparent to me (and very likely to others as well), that this phrase means something entirely different from what a majority of Americans now seem to think it means. I have held conversations with people who earnestly do not believe that any one person is born with more intelligence than any other person. This, I believe, is a foundational element of liberal thinking. The idea is that the entire explanation for intellectual variability, or variable artistic ability, or variable business acumen, is the existence of privilege and oppression. These two terms explain it all for so many today. And it relieves the conscience of those who have not achieved all they expected of themselves, which makes it doubly attractive to many.

If that poor child living in a slum had just had the kind of privilege the rich child living in a wealthy neighborhood with wealthy parents had, he (or she) would have gone just as far as the rich child did in whatever his (or her) pursuit might have been. If the black man (or woman) had experienced the same privilege as the white man (or woman), he (or she) would certainly have gone just as far. If white people weren’t constantly using their majority in the population to keep other races down, everyone would achieve the same level of success.

You may have noticed that I did not also include variability in athletic ability. This would be going too far in anyone’s estimation, because it is patently obvious to all that some people are born with greater athletic ability than others. It is far too easy to see it with your own eyes. It is undeniable. Sure, a skinny weakling with no coordination can work out, run, and play sports diligently until he or she improves his or her strength and coordination, but they cannot make themselves naturally grow to the size of the typical professional athlete and they cannot work hard enough in the arena to achieve the level of ability of the highest performers, if they are not naturally born with at least some extra degree of size and coordination.

So then, why do we expect human brains to be any different? Perhaps one of the most difficult challenges humans face is gauging the intellectual capacity of another person, or even ourselves. Unquestionably, you cannot judge the intellectual capacity of a person by their appearance. If you were given a yearbook full of photographs of students and tried to assign an Intelligence Quotient (IQ) to each student based on their appearance, there is no question that neither you, nor anyone else, could do it. And in the minds of many these days, the IQ is merely a measure of privilege or oppression a person has experienced in their life. All started with a clean slate and equal ability at birth.

Or did they?

If you are one of those who believes such a thing, then I challenge you to ask yourself a simple question. What oppression have you experienced and what privilege did Albert Einstein experience that explains why you are not held in equal intellectual esteem with Professor Einstein? Here is another question for you: How is it that even wealthy privileged parents sometimes give birth to babies that are, to use a most politically incorrect term these days, mentally retarded? Particularly when these parents have other children that demonstrate perfectly normal intelligence? Particularly when these parents go the extra mile showering their love and devotion on these special needs children?

If you are one of those who holds that everyone is born with equal intellectual capacity, it should be obvious to you by now that this is not the case. And if it is true that everyone is not born with an equal measure of intellectual capacity, then it must also be true that all of us are born with some degree of intellectual capacity that lies between the least possible degree of intellectual capacity and the greatest possible degree of intellectual capacity. And if that is true, then what on Earth did those crazy, slave-owning, racist, bigoted Founders of America mean by “all men are created equal?!” Truly!

To answer this question, we have to consider the time when the Declaration of Independence was written. Prior to the existence of the United States of America, all governed nations were ruled by kings and queens. Those territories not governed were ruled by tribes. No such thing as a President ever ruled a nation before the USA came along. Kings and queens derived their power, not from the people over whom they ruled, but by divine decree. Many were believed by their subjects to actually have the blood of their gods running in their veins. Others were given their special status above all others by God through their nation’s religious leaders. Regardless, the point is, these rulers all enjoyed (and in some countries today still do enjoy) a superior status above their subjects. This superior status was (and still is where such rulers still exist) necessary to maintain power. To not be questioned by the ruled as to their legitimacy to rule.

It was with this prevailing circumstance that America’s Founders most emphatically believed that it must be made absolutely and abundantly clear that such a superior status DOES NOT EXIST. Thus, “all men are created equal.”

Equal in status. Equal in the eyes of the law. Those governing do so by the consent of the governed. And only by the consent of the governed. Meaning that as soon as those governing begin to believe they are superior to (no longer equal, but above) the governed, the governed may choose not to consent and may remove them from office. The entire purpose of holding frequent and regular elections is to ensure that no one is more than one election away from losing their consent to govern. The unmitigated desire by so many politicians to win every election and stay in office is proof positive of how important it is that we citizens never stop reminding our rulers that we are equal to them and they are equal to us in status. That they are not, never have been, and never will be superior to those they have been given the privilege to govern.

To you and me, this seems obvious, but let me just tell you my friend, to those elected to office, it is not. Simply winning an election (nothing more than a popularity contest) is enough to swell the heads of most people. Then, after a few years of hanging around others that have also won election, those heads get even bigger. And finally, when the elected begin to acquire wealth as a result of their newfound power, only the most humble and thankful have any chance at all of not succumbing to the overwhelming and almost irresistible feeling of superiority.

And to those for whom this is not obvious, the phrase, “all men are created equal,” means created by God as equals in status. No matter how rich and/or powerful a person may be, in the eyes of the law as an American citizen, and in the eyes of God as a human being, that person is equal in status to the lowliest, poorest, most powerless, and unsuccessful person on Earth. (Unless, of course, that person is a Clinton!)

A Well Regulated Militia…?

by Devin

Have you ever pondered what exactly the words of the 2nd Amendment mean? I mean, besides its purpose to protect your right to bear arms?

Let’s take a look at it. Here is the full text:

A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the People to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

The second half, after the comma, is pretty clear, other than the possibility of the term, “the People,” possibly being misinterpreted as meaning “the collective” and therefore meaning the State. But anyone with at least half a brain (four Supreme Court justices, Stevens, Souter, Ginsburg, and Breyer, notwithstanding) knows the founders weren’t a bunch of Marxists. No chance of such an interpretation ever gaining traction unless our government is able to erase the Founders entirely from our history. And how would they do that? Maybe, just maybe, they would start by replacing them on our currency with non-Founders…

Our beloved late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia wrote the landmark majority (5-4) opinion in District of Columbia v. Heller that made it absolutely clear that the 2nd Amendment refers to an individual right.

Anyway, for the moment, it doesn’t seem that the second part of the 2nd Amendment requires much attention. But what about that first part, “a well regulated militia?”

A quick search around the internet, or a conversation with pretty much any liberal, or simply an examination of Justice Stevens’ dissent in District of Columbia v. Heller, will reveal that more than a few people think those words, “A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free State,” were meant by the Founders to be something like the National Guard. After all, isn’t the National Guard a well regulated militia?

Those first words of the 2nd Amendment are practically famous for misleading those who have never studied the Constitution. Many seem to think the Founders did not intend for individual citizens to have the right to keep and bear arms, but rather intended the formation of a paramilitary force, something like the National Guard, where the arms are locked up until some sort of insurrection requires they be brought out and used to restore the security of our free State. (For you Bernie Sanders fans out there, the term “free State” does not mean you get everything for free!)

These people seem to think that the second part of the 2nd Amendment was written to justify the first part. As we shall see, however, it is exactly the opposite.

In the late 1700s, the Founders were not in the least bit concerned about justifying the need for a militia of any sort. They were most concerned about the danger posed by a standing army. They had seen firsthand how the British used a standing army to occupy the colonies and enforce British law or the King’s latest whim. They were also most recently reminded by their very own Continental Army following its victory over the British when the Continental Congress took its sweet time making good on its promise to pay the soldiers for their service. Standing armies were dangerous back then. They are no less so today.

The Founders understood that a standing army, “a well regulated militia” to use their words, would be a necessity if America were to be capable of defending herself from foreign enemies. Thus, they wrote and ratified the 2nd Amendment to guarantee that American citizens would have the ability to fight back against a rogue army or a rogue government directing an army.

In recognition of that fact, the 2nd Amendment was born. And to make it absolutely clear that the 2nd Amendment wasn’t about protecting the right of “the People” to hunt game and participate in shooting sports, or even about home defense, they stated right up front, at the very beginning, the purpose of the right of the People to keep and bear arms.

 

Forget the Great Depression, 1913 Was Far Worse

by Devin

The 16th and 17th Amendments were ratified in 1913. On February 3, the 16th Amendment gave the federal government the power to “lay and collect taxes on incomes.” Something the Founder’s never intended to happen. And to make matters worse, on April 8, ratification of the 17th Amendment changed how U.S. Senators are chosen, as originally laid out in Article I, Section 3, Clauses 1 through 3 of the Constitution.

Originally, U.S. Senators were chosen by the various State Legislatures. The full text is thus (bold emphasis mine):

The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from each State, chosen by the Legislature thereof, for six Years; and each Senator shall have one Vote.

Immediately after they shall be assembled in Consequence of the first Election, they shall be divided as equally as may be into three Classes. The Seats of the Senators of the first Class shall be vacated at the Expiration of the second Year, of the second Class at the Expiration of the fourth Year, and of the third Class at the Expiration of the sixth Year, so that one third may be chosen every second Year; and if Vacancies happen by Resignation, or otherwise, during the Recess of the Legislature of any State, the Executive thereof may make temporary Appointments until the next Meeting of the Legislature, which shall then fill such Vacancies.

No Person shall be a Senator who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty Years, and been nine Years a Citizen of the United States, and who shall not, when elected, be an Inhabitant of that State for which he shall be chosen.

The full text of the 17th Amendment is thus (bold emphasis mine):

The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from each State, elected by the people thereof, for six years; and each Senator shall have one vote. The electors in each State shall have the qualifications requisite for electors of the most numerous branch of the State legislatures.

When vacancies happen in the representation of any State in the Senate, the executive authority of such State shall issue writs of election to fill such vacancies: Provided, That the legislature of any State may empower the executive thereof to make temporary appointments until the people fill the vacancies by election as the legislature may direct.

This amendment shall not be so construed as to affect the election or term of any Senator chosen before it becomes valid as part of the Constitution.

In the first sentence of the first clause of Article 1, Section 3, and of Amendment 17 the method of selection is changed from (referring to the States), “chosen by the Legislature thereof” to “elected by the people thereof.” The purpose of this change was to give direct control of the Senate to the people of each State. The argument for such a change is readily made by appealing to the desire of citizens to have direct control over the selection of their U.S. Senators. This, it would seem, is the most democratic way to ensure the citizens of each State are best represented in the U.S. Senate.

So what were the consequences of this change?

To answer that question, we must first understand why the Founders decided that U.S. Senators should be chosen by the State Legislatures, rather than by the people of each State. As we all know, and as is enshrined in Article 1, Section 2 of the Constitution, members of the U.S. House of Representatives are elected by the people of each State. This, just like the selection process for U.S. Senators, was overtly intentional. That is why it is called, “The People’s House.”

On the other hand, the U.S. Senate was not intended to be another “people’s house.” It was intended to represent the governments of each State. Since each State Legislature represents the people of the respective States, the people would still be represented in the U.S. Senate, but indirectly through their State Legislatures.

If, at this point, you are thinking that all this sounds rather esoteric and unimportant, not to mention downright undemocratic, you are not alone. Ratification of the 17th Amendment depended upon just such a basic misunderstanding by American citizens of the Founders’ intent for the role of the U.S. Senate. A role that was, as originally envisioned and enacted by the Founders, to give voice to each State’s government in Congress.

You may ask, why do State governments need representation in Congress?

That’s a good question. The answer can be found, ironically, in the 10th Amendment, which was ratified along with the first nine amendments in what is well-known to most as the Bill of Rights. The full text of the 10th Amendment reads thus:

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

One sentence. Simple. This amendment was directly linked to the original role of the U.S. Senate. The U.S. Senate’s job was to ensure that no legislation made it through Congress that violated the terms of the 10th Amendment. This seems a little bit backward at first, because the 10th Amendment was ratified along with the rest of the Bill of Rights four years after the Constitution was ratified. But the whole purpose of the Bill of Rights was to spell out the 10 most important things the Constitution was designed to protect in such a way as to make it absolutely crystal clear, just in case there were ever any question. And how have there ever been questions!

Now that we have over 200 years of experience with the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, we can easily see just how incredibly smart it was to include the Bill of Rights! Given how frequently (practically daily) the right to free speech, the right to bear arms, and the right to religious freedom are being challenged and how often the First and Second Amendments are cited in defense, without the Bill of Rights, we would likely, by now, have none. Thank God for the Bill of Rights!

So what about that 10th Amendment? Why does it matter how U.S. Senators are selected?

Think about it. U.S. Senators, just like members of the U.S. House of Representatives, are beholden to those who put them there. If they were beholden to State governments, how easily do you think they could get away with passing federal legislation that in any way infringes upon the powers of the States? Not too easily. Think State sovereignty.

In this day and age, the States are constantly bullied by the federal government in various ways. The most recent occurrence being the direct threat to revoke federal funding for any public school that fails to implement a policy allowing any male or female to use any bathroom they choose. Why is our federal government in our school bathrooms?!

If you were around back when the legal drinking age was raised from 18 to 21 years, you might recall that while this happened nationwide, all at once, it was not done by federal law. It was done by the federal government threatening to withhold federal highway funds from any state that failed or refused to raise the legal drinking age from 18 to 21 years.

That’s right. The drinking age is not federal law. It is State law. And it used to be freely set by each State for their own citizens, as they saw fit. This is clearly a 10th Amendment issue, as setting the drinking age is not enumerated in the Constitution as a federal power. The National Minimum Drinking Age Act of 1986 did not actually set a national minimum drinking age. It merely codified the federal government’s intent to extort the States into submission. This is a classic example of federal government bullying and overreach. Don’t believe me? Google it.

One State, Louisiana, fought the bullying, but eventually capitulated. If you are, or have ever been, in the U.S. Military, you know that on military bases the drinking age is still 18. Talk about hypocrisy! Apparently, what’s good for the goose is not good for the gander!

So, back to answering our question about the consequences of the 17th Amendment. When U.S. Senators can pass federal laws that force State governments to act against their will, State governments can do nothing about it. Nothing. And since State governments comprise the most local and immediate representation of their citizens, the will of the people is subverted.

You may ask, if the people directly elect their U.S. Senators, why wouldn’t they simply kick them out of office for passing a law that subverted their will at the next election?

Simple. The people are busy living their lives and not paying attention. How else to explain Lindsay Graham, Mitch McConnell, and John McCain?! Furthermore, the people do not understand the significance of each federal law that chips away at local control of their lives. State governments, on the other hand, are a much smaller subset of each State’s citizens and their job is legislation. These are the very people who, given control of the U.S. Senate, would not stand for being bullied by the federal government. It used to be a major part of their job.

A second major consequence of the 17th Amendment was a major reduction in the public’s attention to whom they elect to their State legislatures. No longer having to worry about who their State Representatives and Senators might choose to send to Washington, D.C., their interest was severely diminished. As a result, State governments are now populated by people, about which, few of the people they represent know very much. And knowing that few voters are paying attention at the State level gives State legislators the ability to abuse their positions and be derelict in their duties.

So what would happen if the 17th Amendment were to be repealed?

Firstly, at each of the following three election cycles, the State Legislatures would appoint replacements for those U.S. Senators whose terms were up. Since as of this writing 30 States are under total Republican Party control, it is likely that the U.S. Senate would become dominated by Republicans in short order unless the Democratic Party suddenly made major gains in the State governments.

Secondly, numerous federal laws that trample on State sovereignty would be considered in Congress for repeal. And no bills further infringing on State sovereignty would make it past the U.S. Senate, thus taking a major step toward reigning in federal power. Federal agencies that have made a habit of imposing crippling regulations on States would be directly in the crosshairs of U.S. Senators who would have to answer to their State’s government if they did not put a stop to it.

In short, the bullying would end.

Thirdly, the voting citizens of each State would pay a heck of a lot more attention to the candidates running for their State Legislatures at election time. The citizens of each State would have a very big hammer to use against a runaway federal government in the form of their own State government. Any U.S. Senator not doing the bidding of his or her State’s government would be a one-termer. No campaigning to a public that is too busy living life and earning a living to stay on top of what is going on in D.C. would help.

Finally, think of the reduction in disgusting negative political television ads that would occur each election cycle if U.S. Senators no longer had to campaign to the public for office! That alone might make it worth it!

It is time to Repeal the 17th Amendment!

Bathrooms, Hate Crimes, and the Progressive War on Women

by Amanda

I have to get this out of the way: I don’t hate transgendered people. My best friend for many years was TG. Progressives equate that to me saying, “I’m not racist because my maid is black,” but I’ll assume that anyone reading this has at least half a brain. Also I used to do a bit of cross-dressing as a teenager. I guess you could say I was gender confused. I don’t have an opinion about whether I was deranged or mentally ill. (I sure did suffer from depression.) I came across a bunch of jocks before school one morning, and they called me a fag. I thought it was funny.

Let me get another thing out of the way. I have shared a public bathroom with a TG person any number of times (in addition to my best friend) and it never bothered me. I never saw it bother anyone else, either. I’m sure I have shared a bathroom with a TG I was never aware was TG, because that person passed. These laws and regulations are useful only to protect Transgenders who do not pass.

Given that, why do I rant about these new bathroom laws? First, because they are laws. If a law does not fall under the Non-Agression Principal, then in my book, that is government overreach.  Target and Planet Fitness are private businesses which have the right to make whatever bathroom, locker room, and changing room policies they want. If I don’t like it, I can shop or work out somewhere else. But once bully government gets involved in my naked spaces, I no longer have a choice. Well, I do have a choice. I can be more vulnerable to straight morons who are going to take advantage of the laws to stalk and assault women, or I can be pushed out of the public sphere, living like my great-grandmother did, or like a woman in a Muslim country.

Talk about “Get your laws off my body”!

The second thing that infuriates me about these laws is how proponents justify them: as a civil rights issue, and as a safety issue. Gender fluidity begins with internal feelings that may result in an action being taken. It may be controversial for me to say that a person can control their feelings. I happen to think it a necessary skill for every adult. But for sure a person can control their actions. So if a non-passing TG does not feel accepted in certain situations, such as employment, that person can refrain from going TG to an interview. Can an African-American refrain from being African-American? No, black people actually were “born that way.” Being African-American or a woman is a state of being; it is not possible to refrain from being that. Transgendering is a behavior. Should TGs have to constrain who they are and what they do to maintain equal treatment in society? No. Of course they should not. Nor should anyone. The point is, they CAN; African-Americans can’t.

The other justification I hear for having transgender people use the bathroom or locker room of their gender identity is that bathrooms and locker rooms are places where non-passing TGs experience violence. Violence against TG people is horrible. It is inexcusable.  It is unacceptable. A Time article dated August 17, 2015 titled: “Why Transgendered People Are Being Murdered at a Historic Rate” states there had been 15 murders of TGs up to that point in 2015, primarily TGs of color.  In 2014, there were 1,359 incidents of hate violence against LGBT individuals, of which TGs were the largest share.

No one deserves to be a victim of violence. Every individual human is a child of God who has a right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. No one deserves to be harassed. But since we are asking women and girls to be the safe harbor for TG individuals, and to bear the brunt of straight jackasses who will inevitably abuse these laws, how are women faring?

TGs are undoubtedly harassed, but harassment is also a fact of life for many women. When I was young, I was sexually harassed at school, at work, on public transportation, walking down the street, at the YMCA. I could go on. The last time I was harassed was a few months ago in a grocery store parking lot at noon. Does our world feel safe to women? Survey your women friends. How many look in their back seat before getting into their car? How many would go to a bar alone? How many feel safe on a walk or jog alone? Or staying at the office past business hours? How many walk through a parking garage alone without a second’s thought? Or are afraid to be at home alone?

According to the CDC, nearly one in five women has been raped in her lifetime. One in six women has been stalked. Of raped women, 40 percent experienced their first rape as children, and 12 percent were children under age 10. I say first rape because 35 percent who were raped as children were also raped as an adult. Doing the math on those numbers yields about 2 million American women raped in 1 year. Most of these women experience PTSD, and are much more likely to experience asthma, diabetes, irritable bowel syndrome, frequent headaches, chronic pain, difficulty sleeping, and poor mental and physical health.

The PTSD that literally millions of female rape survivors experience is only going to be aggravated by opening up bathrooms, locker rooms, and changing rooms to biological males. There are laws against indecent exposure, and laws against voyeurism, but these laws would seem to be, nonsensically, suspended in the very places where men and women are most likely to be undressed, particularly shower or swim facilities. Our girls will be forced to endure voyeurism against themselves, and exposure to post-adolescent penises, at the very tenderest ages. Our government is not just allowing, but requiring, sexual violence against women and girls.

So are Progressives telling us it’s worth it to put millions of women and girls into trepidation and fear about being exploited, in order to protect a tiny minority of TG individuals from feeling uncomfortable? To prevent whatever percentage of a few thousand hate crimes that may occur in a changing room, bathroom, or locker room–by replacing those with an untold number of acts of voyeurism and indecent exposure against untold numbers of girls and women?

I guess the right to safety and privacy is non-existent for women and girls, unless that woman or girl was born with a penis, or pretends to have one.  It’s the penis that confers the rights. If that isn’t male privilege, what is? TG behavior being equated with blackness makes it white male privilege.

There’s the Progressive war on women for you.


 

Constitutional Rant

by Amanda

This post is in response to an article published by the Brookings Institute, which can be found here.

This opinion piece is interesting. But “liberals” and progressives somehow believe in Constitutional protections? FALSE.

  • Are Christians who are forced to bake cakes, freely exercising their religion?
  • Is ideological diversity allowed at our college campuses?
  • Can there be discourse of non-progressive ideas without being called a bigot or a racist?
  • Does the federal government leave things not enumerated as a federal power to states and localities?
  • Are American citizens free from search, seizure, and surveillance without due process?

No, no, no, no, and no.

Progressives don’t believe in the Constitution. They believe in building up and using a powerful and coercive government to jam their personal beliefs down everyone else’s throats, and telling them if they are gagging it’s because they’re racist, classist, or whatever-phobic. To believe that somehow Drumph is more “frightening” when it comes to his commitment to constitutional protections than Democrats?

That’s insane.

Democrats have no commitment to the Constitution.

Why am I so Passionately Non-Socialist?

by Amanda

Why am I so passionately non-Socialist? Because the personal is the political. When you are needy and dependent on another person, they can (and probably will) abuse you. When you are needy and dependent on the government, it can (and probably will) abuse you. As an individual in relationship you have to be strong in yourself to be able to create a healthy, interdependent relationship, rather than an unhealthy codependent one. Likewise, as a citizen of a country, and a part of an economy, being needy and dependent is a hopeless and undignified position. I would like to see us focus our national creativity to come up with ways to integrate disadvantaged and disabled people into a position of feeling useful and being valued. Socialism doesn’t do that. It is charity, in a sense, but lacks love and relationship and so is not true charity at all. It doesn’t give a hand up, it keeps people down. A vibrant economy and dedication to the principle of the dignity and freedom of the human person, as our founders envisioned, is psychologically and socially healthy.