Disillusionment, Demoralization, Reality

January 21, 2021

“I could not be more demoralized or disillusioned. Trump’s four years were almost entirely bereft of the “winning” he promised. “Trust the plan” seems like the most bitter joke imaginable now. The only arrests were of Trump’s associates, who were prosecuted by his Justice Department. The same Justice Department that declined to prosecute Hillary Clinton. Or look at Hunter Biden’s laptop. Or investigate vote fraud.”

“Trump was the commander-in-chief for four years. He could have brought all the troops home, as he often threatened to do. He could have closed the border, as he often threatened to do. He could have written those Executive Orders he promised, to ban DACA, ban birth-right citizenship, close sanctuary cities, and end the foreign VISA worker programs. Instead, while he undeniably was preoccupied with fending off attacks for his entire time in office, including a laughably partisan impeachment effort, he spent most of his time in office tweeting. And engaging in childish food fights with state-controlled journalists and clueless celebrities. The level of discourse is now less civil than it has ever been.” — Donald Jeffries

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Joe Biden has been sworn in and is now president of the United States of America. Donald Trump has been thrown out unceremoniously on his ear. It remains to be seen, though, whether he will be dragged through the meat grinder one more time (impeachment) to make sure that he will never again attain the office of the presidency or wield the power he once had. They (the powers-that-be) must be terrified. No one would take such extreme measures if they were not. Which brings up the question– “What the heck are they scared of?” Answer that and you will know how to act.

In my opinion, Trump ought to threaten them with flat-out blackmail: “If you prosecute me any further, I will release the information I have on your sordid dealings. It will be like the floodgates of Hell were opened. We are ready to rumble. Your move.”

What the heck? If Trump was half the man he promoted himself to be, he would simply release all the dirt he possessed and let the chips fall where they would. Will that happen? Probably not. Any president who pardons Blackwater thugs, but refuses to do the same for Edward Snowden or Julian Assange is not worthy of serious respect or consideration.

But, enough of the politics. Let’s move on to more important questions which we need to answer. What is going to happen now and where do we go from here?

In answer to the first question—Who knows? That is beyond our knowledge and control. There is no sense at all in wasting time, energy, and resources trying to figure it out. All we need to know is that it is going to be chaotic and we need to be aware that massive changes are coming to the American Dream, R.I.P. The fact is that the way we experienced life is over and done. It is the End of the World, as we knew it. Big changes are coming and we will have to adapt to them—for better or for worse.

In answer to the second question—That depends on us. We can wallow in the depths of despair and misery because Trump did not prevail. We can look at the future with an eye of doom and gloom because Biden did. We can be certain that our world has gone to Hell in a hand basket and there is nothing we can do about it.

Conversely, we can be confident that Biden’s victory is going to accelerate the demise of the System as we knew it and celebrate that the old, corrupt way of doing things has crossed the Rubicon. We can be sure that the State which has wielded so much power and influence over our daily lives has reached its zenith and is rapidly disintegrating before our very eyes. We can be hopeful that our children and grandchildren will experience a better life than we had, not necessarily richer materialistically, but more at liberty to determine the way they live within their own personal lives.

To be honest, I am glad that Donald Trump lost his bid for a second term. There have been far too many people in this country who thought that he was the equivalent of the second coming of Christ, who believed that he was going to Make America Good Again! Many of them Solid Republican Christians, and now the mask has been ripped off. “Ouch! That hurts!” Far too many people put their faith and trust in the System (voting), expecting the System (Establishment) to respond positively to their preference and liking. Well, the blinders are coming off and multitudes are going to have to admit they were hoodwinked and that they will have to change course. No more faith in politics nor a political figurehead. Faith only in the One Who has the ability and power to save us regardless of the circumstances.

Perhaps more appropriate than trying to predict the future is to answer this question. “How should we then live?” As far as I am concerned, there is only one answer:

“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” – 1 John 1:9 (New International Version)

Back to Donald Jeffries again for a brief moment.

In this fantastically divided country, after the brief age of Trump, we remain locked down, wearing masks, socially distancing, listless and rudderless. Like Orwell’s Winston Smith, we have learned to love Big Brother

Yes, we have learned to love Big Brother who promises a false liberty and we have forgotten what it means to love the One Who gives us true liberty. Both demand total submission, unconditional surrender, but only One produces the real deal. It is time we abandoned man-made solutions and saviors and put our hope in the Gospel, Spirit, and Person of Jesus Christ.

Ebb and Flow of Life

Time may be linear, but life is not. Like the ocean tides, life is constantly changing, always moving in different directions. There are high point and low points. There are good times and bad. There are euphoria and depression. Rich and poor. Pleasant and uncomfortable. Joy and sorrow. Et cetera. This list could go on forever.

If there is one constant in life, it is that it is always in flux, never the same from one moment to the next. Perhaps it would be more appropriate right now to say that life is never the same from one presidential election to another, but I do not have to tell you that. It is painfully evident today.

Unless a miracle happens and he pulls an ace or two out of his sleeve, Donald Trump will be out in just a few days. (The last four years remind me of Lady MacBeth’s tirade, “Out, damned spot. Out, I say!”) Unless something drastic happens, in just a few days, Joe Biden will be sworn in as President of the USA. To say that things will be different is to only state the obvious. Trying to guess how they will be different is a little more problematic, although we can look at the sorry state of affairs we are currently living in and conclude that we are experiencing the end of the American Experiment, a.k.a, End of the World–as we knew it.

Yes, life is going to be different. For most of us, probably harder, more difficult, more complex. This is not necessarily a bad thing, because if tough times make tough people, then a lot of us are going to become much tougher in the years ahead. The manner with which we respond to the changes and the way we allow our circumstances to mold and shape us will determine what we become. There really are only two options. We will become stronger and better persons, driving our world forward toward a better future, or we will become weaker and less effective in producing anything of lasting value and meaning.

This is not difficult to understand. You can either swim or you can drift. It is not a matter of sinking, since even drowning persons make the effort to save themselves. Swimmers, even drowning ones, work to affect their world in a personally beneficial way. Drifters simply float, going wherever the current takes them. All other things being equal, activity will conquer passivity every single time. Even if it is dead wrong and criminal, a deliberate action will overcome a passive response to it. Drifting, without any attempt to better yourself, will produce exactly what you put into it–nothing.

In an article recently posted on Lew Rockwell, Allan Stevo wrote this.

“It is with great truth that people say faith can move mountains. It need not be a religious conviction. To tell yourself something is possible and to commit yourself to doing that thing makes that thing possible and far more likely to occur than before the person of faith conceived it. The person of faith is required to act in order for creation to occur. If you don’t act, creation cannot occur. If you don’t fight, you can’t win.”

“He with no faith, moves no mountains.”

A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Make the step. And then another, and another, until they become a habit. One step is an anomaly, two steps a coincidence, three steps a pattern. It is impossible to climb a mountain without starting, but if you decide that you cannot climb that mountain, you will never start. You will only stay at home, sitting in your easy chair, consoling yourself with the rationalization that you really did not want to climb it anyway.

My father used to quote this saying. I do not know where it came from. “They said it couldn’t be done, but with vim and vigor, he pitched right in AND couldn’t do it.” Understanding him the way I did (and do), I would read that as saying that he thought there are some things in life which cannot be accomplished, no matter how much time, effort, and resources are poured into it, therefore there is no sense in trying. The important thing here, though, is not the failure to succeed, but the fact that there is a concerted attempt made to reach a goal. Discouragement from others should not prevent you from taking a chance and working to make your dreams come true. You may fail if you try. You will always fail if you do not.

How are we going to handle the challenges ahead of us? This is the question each of us must answer in our own way. I cannot answer for you. You cannot answer for me. Each version will be unique. I can, however, offer you this scriptural advice from which I draw inspiration in my own life.

“…faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead…Show me your faith without works and I will show you my faith by my works.” (James 2:17, 18)


“Whatever you do [whatever your task may be], work from the soul [that is, put in your very best effort], as [something done] for the Lord and not for men,” (Colossians 3:23, Amplified Bible)

Enough said. We have work to do. Carry on.

America 2021: Division, Destruction, and Salvation

But Jesus knew their thoughts and said to them, “Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation and every city or house divided against itself will not stand.” — Matthew 12:25

Joe Biden has won. Donald Trump has lost. There were only two possible outcomes of this “election” and this is the one which has played out. What do I think? I am not greatly concerned about it and it will not cause me to lose any sleep or give in to the fear which so many have already succumbed to. Neither will it cause me to go out and riot in the streets.

Some will be exhilarated by the news. They will rejoice that their dreams have come true. They will celebrate the “fact” that lying, cheating, and stealing will produce the results they hope for. They will anticipate that “glorious day” when Utopia comes to Earth and they will be disappointed when they receive an “F” on their report card–at some undefined point in the future.

Some will be devastated by the news. They will express sorrow that their dreams have not manifested. They will rue the “fact” that Donald Trump has not proven to be the savior they desired and that he was not able to produce the world they thought was possible. As the societal situation deteriorates, they will continually say, “If you had only listened to me.”

A pox on both their houses. Nothing would be different if the results were switched.

Salvation does not come from a forced conformity to the prevailing attitude. It does not come from a societal pressure to be like everyone else. It does not come from a statist attitude that we are free to do as we are told, but only as we are told. It does not come from the idea that we must be made to be good. In this belief, Democrats, socialists, and progressives are all wrong.

Neither does salvation come in the form of a man who embodies the belief that we can simply shape society to our liking by writing our Code of Conduct down on a scrap of parchment. It does not come from the belief that returning to the Constitution of the United States is going to correct all the wrongs in society. Heck, we never abandoned the Constitution. It has been with us…forever. In this, Republicans, conservatives, and (some) morally upright people are all wrong.

Politics. Everything I have written above is politics, except the first paragraph. What is politics? It is the art and practice of getting what you want at the expense of everyone else. This is as simple an explanation as I can come up with and it has been proven to be true, over and over, throughout history.

“Why should today be different?” –Tevye, from Fiddler on the Roof.

[Editor’s Note: I saw Fiddler on the Roof live in Jacksonville, FL, on Topol’s farewell tour, the last year he would ever perform this play. He was showing his age. It was one of the highlights of my life. I will never forget it.]

[Disclaimer: Fiddler on the Roof is, in my opinion, the supreme show. If I wake up in the middle of the night and cannot go back to sleep, I pop it onto the big screen and watch it–until I fall asleep, which may take a few minutes, only to wake up three hours later to turn it off. My wife hates it, but she tolerates it. God bless her.]

Reality is that man individually cannot save himself. Reality is that man cannot save himself collectively either. Individually or collectively, we cannot save ourselves and so we resort to politics, which is based on force. You will be saved, doggone it, even if you do not want to be. Politics is a desire to save mankind from himself (personally benefiting from the process) and, practiced as such, is doomed to failure. The sooner we learn that the better off we will be. Politics is not going to save us because politics does not and cannot change human nature. It can only exacerbate the negative aspects of it.

Reality is that we must reach outside of ourselves to find the answers to the problems which plague us. Man, as a species, is flawed and imperfect, therefore, Man as a species, cannot rely on Man to solve our problems. We can only find the answers when we search from a higher knowledge and understanding. This, inevitably, means coming to grips with the idea that we are not self-sufficient in ourselves. We cannot solve our own problems. We need help–badly, big time! This is the hardest thing we will ever encounter.

“Help? I need help? I cannot do this on my own? WTF?”

Well, yes, we do because the world which we have devised and created is coming apart at the seams.

There is only one response to this. We have been wrong. We need to change. We, meaning I. I have been wrong. I need to change. I am responsible for the shape and condition of my world. I, not you. Let me repeat that because it may not have sunk in the first time–I, not you.

Looking in the mirror at my own face and considering my own spiritual condition is not easy, but it is necessary. Nothing in my life will change until I change. I cannot change unless I am willing to give up control of my life, admit that I cannot handle it by myself, and ask for help–from the One Who can give me what I need to make those changes. This is reality, spiritual reality, and it will manifest itself first in my own life personally. From there, it will spread to my world and begin to influence the worlds of those who are in contact with me.

Jesus also used this illustration: “The Kingdom of Heaven is like the yeast a woman used in making bread. Even though she put only a little yeast in three measures of flour, it permeated every part of the dough.” — Matthew 13:33

What is the solution to our problems in today’s society? Easy answer: Elect the right President. Pass the right laws. Enact the right policies. Enforce the right behavior. Hard answer: I am. You are. We are.

Playing politics and putting our faith in the System will not carry the day. Putting our faith in Jesus the Christ and relying on His Spirit to regenerate ourselves will. This is the only solution.

“My hope is built on nothing less than Jesus Christ, MY righteousness.” (emphasis added)

Politics will get us nothing but trouble. It is time to abandon ‘The Faith’ in favor of the only One Who promises and delivers.

2021: A Change of Direction

“We have met the enemy and he is us.” — Pogo the Possum

Pogo - Earth Day 1971 poster.jpg

In 2020, I wrote and published forty-nine articles on this blog, all but a few of them concerning the madness and panic we have experienced due to the Corona Monster outbreak. Some of these were informative, some an attempt to be humorous, others opinionated, even a few which employed some degree of sarcasm and ridicule. I appreciate your patience and long-suffering.

However, just as we have left 2020 behind and begun a new year, turning a corner, so to speak, I am also going to be charting a new course and heading into the unknown future, hoping to shine a light in the darkness by which I can see my way clearly and which others, who wish to journey with me, will be attracted to.

There is more than enough data available and so much noise made about this aberration that no one needs to be persuaded any longer. Everyone has made up his/her mind about the corona virus and nothing remains to be said which is going to convince anyone to change their opinion about it, except politicians, of course, who are attentive to every little flicker of the change in the wind. I have come to the conclusion that I am only preaching to the choir of those who hold the same attitude I do. Those who do not are not going to pay any attention to what I say. I am wasting my breath. My time. I am tired of it. Because of this, I am going to shift my focus to something which I consider to be far more important: the way we live and die (because die we will) in a dark and uncertain future. Whether we live or die as a result of the Corona Monster rearing its ugly head should not be our consuming fire. How we respond to the situation is.

I keep an eye on the statistics which WordPress provides to me and have noticed a pattern recently. Out of all the articles I have published in the last year, the ones which drew the most attention by far (see here and here for example) have not been focused directly on the Covid issue or the state of our world. Instead, they have been those in which I offered an affirming message of encouragement, hope, and courage with the intention of building up the moral strength and spiritual fortitude of my readers. (And that of myself, because I need to hear these things just as much as anyone else does.)

These are dark days and appear to be getting more so. If you only focus on the bad news, you will be discouraged, lose hope, and suffer defeat in your own personal spiritual life. It doesn’t have to be that way, though, because we do not have to give in to the negative feeling of despair. We can be hopeful, we can be encouraged, we can be strong and victorious over the vicissitudes of life which seek to destroy us. No matter which way the world turns, our attitude can be positive and vibrant with the joy of life which is within us. We have the choice before us: to live well, proactively and positively, OR to only live, reactively and resignedly, which is not really living at all.

“Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms — to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.”Viktor Frankl, from Man’s Search for Meaning

OK, let’s cut to the chase. From here on out, increasingly, spiritual inspiration is going to be the main driver of my message. This does not mean that I am going to disregard the chaos and flux which is happening around us. Pollyanna is not going to be my model. Don’t worry about that. My articles are still going to be as pointed and hard-hitting as ever, but even though I might write about some particular issue, the underlying message will be one of hope and encouragement so that others can find their way through the fog and emerge stronger than ever when it dissipates. There is a silver lining behind every cloud and I am determined to find it.

My mother always wanted me to be a preacher. My father’s opinion was that I should have been a lawyer. I’ve spent a good portion of my life trying to be a philosopher. Probably, all three of these have coalesced into who I am right now.

Hang on. Life is a wild, exhilarating, beautiful ride and then we die, only to hear those words,

“Well done, good and faithful servant; you have been faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.” — Matthew 25:23

How can it get any better than that?

2021: A Small and Necessary Adjustment

I do not always get everything right. Sometimes “tweaking” is called for.

In the article posted just a few days ago, 2021:New Year. Lose the Fear! , I wrote this sentence which needs to be corrected somewhat.

“As 2021 begins, let us make the decision to live fearlessly in the middle of our own personal storm.”

Fearlessly! At first glance, this sounds good. In order to live a life in which we do not give in to our fear, we have to live fearlessly. Right? It would seem so, but ever since I wrote that and published it, something has been gnawing at me that this is off kilter just a little.

I found the answer in a book which I purchased recently: Live Not By Lies, A Manual for Christian Dissidents, by Rod Dreher. He discusses the difference between “hard” totalitarianism of the Communist regimes of the Soviet Union and its Eastern European satellites and the “soft” totalitarianism we are beginning to experience in the West. In the “hard” system, everyone was forced to conform to the ideological line and punished severely, often brutally and violently, sometimes killed or imprisoned for long periods of time. In the “soft” system, we are seeing the rise of a society which is demanding conformity to the ideological line and punishment is visited on those who refuse to do so or who may have inadvertently broken the “rules”. The practices of cancel culture, career terminations, digital censorship, mandatory training courses in diversity and tolerance, etc., are becoming just as totalitarian as what we remember the Soviet Bloc to be. Dreher also gives some advice on how to withstand and resist the approaching juggernaut, but I’m not going to give it to you. Buy the book and read it for yourself.

One paragraph stuck out at me, though, and gave me what I needed to answer the question above. Toward the end of the book is a quote by one of Dreher’s contacts, a Slovak who was part of the underground resistance toward the Czechoslovakian State.

Dreher writes that,

“Simulcik tells me that he and his cell of several other young Catholic men were all afraid. You would have been crazy not to have fear.”

then goes on to quote him directly.

“The question is, which is going to win: fear, or courage?…In the beginning, it was mostly a matter of fear. But once you started experiencing freedom–and you felt freedom through the things you did–your courage grew. We experienced all this together. We helped one another to gradually build up the courage to do bigger things, like join the Candle Demonstration. With this courage also developed our sense of duty, and our need to be of service to other people…We could see the products of our work.”

Courage, as any John Wayne fan knows, is being scared to death, but saddling up anyway. Saddle up enough times and you will lose the fear. When that happens, freedom comes–the freedom to get on a horse and ride fearlessly–because you know that you have conquered what held you back before.

None of us are able to live without fear all the time. There are times when we would be crazy not to be afraid, but that should not stop us from living courageously. We can face the storm around us with courage, going through our daily lives understanding that we do run the risk of potential harm, especially when we start doing something we are not accustomed to. Saddle up, anyway, and ride!

“For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” –2 Timothy 1:7, NKJV

Afterword to 2021: New Year, Lose the Fear!

Less than five minutes after I had posted the article mentioned above, I opened up my e-mail and found a short note sent to me a few hours before from one of my contacts. Her name is Julie. Other than that, she will remain anonymous until further notice.

Julie has some skill at writing articulately and I had asked her previously to contribute to this blog. I was pleasantly surprised to find that this note (she called it a “blurb”) tied in so well to what I had just posted that I asked her for permission to reproduce it, to which she agreed wholeheartedly. God really does work in mysterious ways. She had no idea that I would post the article. I had no idea that she would send me this. Coincidence? I rather doubt it.

“Before they (you) call, I will answer.” –Isaiah 65:24

Only very slightly edited and condensed, here is her comment.

“Some time ago…I wrote [a note of encouragement] in response to someone who seemed disheartened about a seeming state of stagnation on the mask issue, despite their work to advance progress.”

“One thing at a time. Take a stand one conversation at a time, show a full, smiling face to one person at a time, and reassure one scared person or business at a time. Each small victory chisels another piece out of the darkness that is fear, and brightens the rays of hope.”

I love it! She has encapsulated my general message and brought it down to the individual level. One person at a time. One scared person at a time. One small victory at a time. Every person who overcomes the fear, every action which chisels a piece out of the darkness is a victory which brightens the hope which is ours.

Thank you, Julie. This was a beautiful comment, a fitting afterword. Now, can I persuade you to ramp up to 500 word essays?

 

2021: New Year, Lose the Fear!

January 1, 2021

All right, it is time. Time to put 2020 behind us forever! I have been waiting eagerly for this moment. If there was ever a year which we should leave in the dust and never look back, it would be the one we just left. There are enough bad memories to go around…and then some. All of us ought to be glad to see it fade away in the rearview mirror.

Question is, though, what is ahead of us? What will 2021 bring or look like? Are we ready for it or will it catch us unawares? Who knows? I sure do not and am not going to make any predictions, although some do in great detail. (Warning: foul language. Worth it, though, if you can get past that.)

One thing I am certain of, however, is that it will not be the time when we “revert” back to normal, a.k.a., pre-2020. We are not going back to the good old days of 2005, 1980, or 1954. Forget that. Those days are gone and will not be repeated. Looking back and wishing for a return to more halcyon, happier days is an exercise in futility. Instead, we have to face an uncertain, risky future about which we know nothing and can only make vague predictions about based on what we have and see around us at the present moment.

Scary thought, huh? You bet it is and many people are so terrified of the prospect that they are afraid to live and be free.

What is the worst that could happen?

  • A Real Killer Plague which we have no defense against?
  • Catastrophic earthquakes around the Pacific Rim, including the US west coast?
  • A super-volcanic eruption from Yellowstone?
  • Financial implosion and devastating depression?
  • A hot war with China which might lead to nuclear weapons unleashed?
  • An EMP bomb exploded over the continental US which destroys every transistor circuit in the country?
  • Civil war in America?
  • Martial law and totalitarian crackdowns on our freedom?
  • Widespread famine and starvation of millions?
  • Gulags? Concentration camps? Mass murder of disenfranchised individuals?
  • Donald Trump retaining the President’s chair? Joe Biden taking it away from him?

All of these are possible, but none of them have the power in and of themselves to cause us to be afraid of the future. Our security is built on a promise of hope, not one of fear. As Christians, believers in the finished work of Jesus Christ at Calvary and His ongoing work in our world, we can trust in the belief that He has His hand on the steering wheel of history and is navigating us to a better place. The fact that we are in a storm does not (should not) diminish that hope. He can still calm the wind and the waves by simply speaking to them as He did over 2000 years ago. Sometimes He does, but even if not, we do not have to be afraid of our circumstances or what might arise out of them. Instead, our faith should grow as we progress from one situation to another, building, ever building, always building on the Solid Foundation, which is Jesus the Christ.

We are children of the Most High God, disciples of the Teacher, servants of the King. This is sure. This is confident. This is fear-destroying. We can live this way. We can…if we choose to.

As 2021 begins, let us make the decision to live fearlessly in the middle of our own personal storm. After all, as Christians, the worst thing that can happen to us is only what is allowed to happen to us. If He is the Master, then everything that happens to us is at His prerogative and His desire is that we live, survive, and thrive within His Kingdom–even if we die in the process and spend the rest of eternity in His presence.

If He is the Master, what have we got to lose except our fear?

Whoville, USA: Fauci and the Grinch

December 26, 2020.

Merry Christmas, everyone, and a Happy and Blessed New Year to you!

If you recall, there were pronouncements everywhere (see here and here for examples) that Christmas, like Thanksgiving, should be abandoned this year due to the deadly existential threat of the world’s newest four-letter word: Covd, or, more appropriately, “Covid!!” Many of those dire utterings came from the man who many consider to be the Mouth of the Beast, Anthony “The Grinch” Fauci. If you paid attention to his words and acted accordingly, you would have been terrified to even leave your house to put the wrapping paper into the garbage can.

Good news, though. Apparently Fauci realized that he had made a mistake and backtracked on his advice. [Editor’s Note: More than likely this happened because of the extreme amount of backlash, resistance, and ridicule he received, but that is just my opinion.] In addition, he salvaged the matter by travelling to the North Pole and giving Santa Claus an injection of The Vaccine. Extraordinary times require extraordinary measures! Which of the many competing versions of the cocktail Santa received was not mentioned. We should all be grateful that Fauci, the Official Purveyor of Truth, rose to the challenge of deliberately lying to little children in a desperate attempt to keep up the Facade, which is crumbling by the day.

What is truly remarkable, though, is that Christmas came after all. Like the Grinch, Fauci did his best to bamboozle all the good citizens of Whoville, USA, tried to steal their joy, and ruin their celebration of the most festive day of the year, yet wound up with nothing for his efforts. Christmas came anyway and many, many people simply ignored him as if he was only a buzzing mosquito to be swatted away. (BTW, ignoring a politician is quite possibly the best thing we can do. It makes them irrelevant and unnecessary.)

This really is Good News, but it gets better. It is now only six days until New Years Day, January 01, 2021 and the whole world will be celebrating the beginning of a new year, to which I say, “Have at it! Enjoy yourself! Enjoy the company of family, friends, neighbors, and acquaintances around you! Enjoy the festivities, fireworks, and food! Don’t allow anyone to rain on your parade!”

As far as Fauci goes, I encourage him to follow the example of the Grinch who actually realized his error and repented of his sins. If he is not willing to do that, then I encourage him to follow the example of his co-worker of evil, Dr. Deborah Birx, who just recently resigned and went into obscurity because she was caught in a scandal of hypocrisy and couldn’t handle the criticism which erupted out of it. Yes, Mr. Grinch Fauci, either change your course diametrically or go home, lock the door behind you, and shut up.

The world, our world, will be better off if you do.

Side Effects of Face Masks: The Corona Syndrome

This article will be anecdotal and stems from a few observations I have made within the last week as concerns the wearing of face masks. It is not meant to be a medical recommendation, which means that I cannot be prosecuted for practicing medicine without a license. Note: I do not wear a face mask anywhere, except for the rare occasions when I am required to in order to purchase materials during the course of my employment. At those times, I put it on to get what I need and immediately take it off as soon as (or even before) I leave the store premises. There are times when we have to act as if we are spies in the enemy camp. Wisdom is knowing the difference.

  • I had to walk the streets of Missoula the other day for a few blocks–maskless, of course, even though most of the other people on the sidewalks had their “face diapers” on. In every instance, when I met someone and deliberately tried to make eye contact with them, they invariably looked somewhere else, refusing to meet my glance. I got the distinct impression that these people were sad, deeply sad, about their plight, yet they would not do what was necessary to alleviate the situation. It was almost as if they had become resigned to it. Be safe, be sad! It would be easy to sneer at these people or to be contemptuous of them, but I feel compassion for them because they are enslaved to an attitude and cannot break free from it. In this respect, I think that I am only following the example (Matthew 9:36) set by Jesus, Who felt compassion for the masses because He saw their condition.
  • I was in a local grocery store, Super 1 in Stevensville, this morning. The requisite signs are posted on the doors which state that face masks are required for entry. Just a few days ago, I noticed the store had put up a large sign which read, “Please wear a face mask while shopping”. This sounds to me like desperation. The managers of this store know that they cannot antagonize its customers by refusing service to anyone who doesn’t wear a mask, so they resort to begging. Poor fellows! They are caught between a rock and a hard place. I have compassion for them, but also know that, sooner or later, they will have to make a decision–either go all in on the mask mandate or scrap it completely. My advice to them: Screw up your courage and tell the county Health (?) Dept. where to go.
  • While shopping in Super 1, I saw that most people were wearing the mask, but there were a large number who were not. One of these “rebels”, a young woman with two children blocked my path for a moment and apologized. I replied that it was nice to see a smiling, friendly face for a change, at which she smiled broadly, agreed with me, and wished me a “Merry Christmas.” A few minutes later, I passed another young woman, a casual acquaintance who was not wearing a mask. We smiled and waved at each other and went on our merry way. Both these instances left me with a feeling of pleasure and good will.
  • I also had a little interaction with an infant who could sit in the cart without help, probably around a year old. She was a pretty little girl who did not wear the mask even though both her parents present did. They would not look at me or acknowledge my presence, but she did. In fact, this girl locked onto my eyes and would not look away. This happened on two different occasions and each time, I met her gaze directly, wrinkling my nose, batting my eyes, and smiling at her. She needed it. Chances are that most of the adults she knows do not allow her to see their faces, depriving her of necessary education at reading emotions and expressions of other people. What indeed are we teaching our children? Too many of them have spent the last year in “school” without the opportunity to learn what they need to know to be successful in life. This is shameful on the part of the parents and will come back to bite society in a few years.
  • On the side of the road north of Florence is a flashing digital sign which was placed there under the auspices of Ravalli County Health Dept. Originally it had the message that read, “Wear a Mask. Face Masks Save Lives!” Someone unknown vandalized it with spray paint. (I must admit. The thought crossed my mind, but somebody beat me to it. I would have just “masked” it with a sheet.) Recently, the message has been changed so that it now reads, “Be Nice. Be Kind.” Such a sappy, sentimental, unthinking, progressive type of mantra. Unfortunately for the authors, they do not realize that what they are trying to convey is actually Christian in nature. Kindness is a Christian attribute and is given to others freely in a spirit of love. It cannot be forced. If it is, then it is no longer kindness, but obedience to the rule. Very unChristian, in other words. This is really nothing more than a repeating of Frederich Neitschze, who said that, “When one gives up the Christian faith, one pulls the right to Christian morality out from under one’s feet.” Who are these people who are ordering us to be kind by exhorting and requiring us to cover our faces with a bit of cloth or paper which has absolutely no effect on the transmission of a virus? Christian? I strongly doubt that. More likely, an appeal to the power-hungry among us.

This, too, shall pass. God, please give me the strength and courage I need to live and breathe free until it does. Amen and Amen!

Postscript: There is nothing more beautiful in this world than a woman smiling at those around her. There is nothing more ugly than putting a mask on it.

The Long Road Ahead: Moral Reconstruction

“Civilizations die from suicide, not by murder.”–Arnold J. Toynbee

“You cannot hope to build a better world without improving the individuals.”–Marie Curie

Moral character cannot be legislated. This is not understood by those who believe that politics is the answer to every social problem. For them, it is a lesson in perpetual disappointment. History repeats the lesson for those who refuse to learn from previous ones. Today, America is making many of the same mistakes which other civilizations have made before. Will we experience the same results or are we different? Are we exceptional, as then-President Obama declared in his inaugural address in 2013? Will America survive and prosper in the manner we have become accustomed to or will drastic changes be the order of the day?

The quote below is from a documentary by Mystic Films, Intl. on ancient Persia–Iran: The Forgotten Glory. This is an excellent film and well worth the time spent watching it. The conditions described happened during the reign of Xerxes. He was the last king of Persia, just before Alexander the Great toppled the empire. If you believe that history repeats itself, let this be a warning. 

“Prolonged wars with Greece and increased taxes imposed on the subject nations created debilitating corruption in the empire, weakening the central government. Satraps, rulers of the provinces, became careless of the needs of the people, opting instead to amass wealth and luxury for themselves.”           

Allow me to paraphrase these words slightly and bring them up to date.

            “Prolonged wars in Afghanistan, Syria, and Iraq, and increased taxes imposed on American citizens created debilitating corruption in the government, weakening the nation. Politicians, lobbyists, major corporations, and bureaucrats became careless of the freedoms of the people, opting instead to amass wealth and luxury for themselves.”

Throughout history, societies and civilizations have risen and fallen. Over and over again, they have followed a consistent pattern. In 1994, Jim Nelson Black wrote in When Nations Die, that among the factors leading to the collapse of every major civilization which ever existed were these:

            Devaluation of human life

            Compromise of religious beliefs

            Celebration of sexual immorality

 These examples are pervasive throughout America today. There are many others, too many to mention, which exemplify the lack of good moral character in our country.

Societies are not faceless, amorphous organizations which just appear out of nowhere. They are built out of individuals, each one trying to make a better life for himself. Each individual acts out of a moral character according to the way he believes. The society reflects that moral character. Society is what its individual members are. There is no other way to look at it. Society does not create nor determine what its members are. Instead, together the individual members define what that society becomes.

A society’s moral character cannot be dictated or imposed from the top. Electing a specific person to the office of President will not change the moral character of any other person. Putting a Republican into power as opposed to a Democrat (or vice versa) will not make any difference in the moral make-up of society. Enacting regulations and issuing ordinances will not compel any person to change his morality. Passing laws to make people “good” simply will not work.

A very large percentage of America’s citizens have lost sight of what it means to have good moral character. Morality originates from the Word of God and is planted within the heart of each person. When we suppress that moral instinct, ignore it, or actively rebel against it, we create problems. At a personal level, this may be minor and of limited scope. Over the whole of society, however, these are multiplied and the consequences can be devastating and catastrophic. As a nation, we have spent decades, even centuries, gradually  uncoupling ourselves from the moral truths of the Word of God. The evidence is plain to see for anyone who wants to.

There is hope for the future. This not the end of the world, but let’s not pull any punches. We have work to do. There are painful times ahead.  America is going to go through the wringer. As a nation, we are going to experience substantial course corrections which will cause extreme hardships in much of the country. It is not going to be easy. It will be ugly. It will hurt. In the end, it will be worth it.

 “No discipline seems to be joyful for the present, but painful. Nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness (godly, moral character) to those who have been trained by it. Therefore, strengthen the hands which hang down and the feeble knees, and make straight paths for your feet…” (Hebrews 12:11-13a)

As Christians, we must lose the belief that our problems can be solved by politics. It is no good to put our faith in the system, hoping and believing that those we elect or the laws they enact will make everything (anything?) right. Thinking that America can be “restored” by reverting back to a more conservative or Constitutional approach to government is foolish, naïve, and willfully blind. America has gone too far, there is no going back. (See Geezer Conservatism for another view on the same subject.)

Instead, we must put our faith in Jesus Christ the King. He rules the United States. We must acknowledge His Word as sovereign in every area of our lives. We must work to bring ourselves and our sphere of influence (including politics) into alignment with His Law. We must work to bring every part of our world into His Kingdom. Individual believers who surrender and submit to His Authority improve the moral character of the country–one person at a time, one day at a time.

“What you dislike in another, take care to correct in yourself.” — Thomas Sprat

“You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.” — Jesus Christ, from the Sermon on the Mount, (Matthew 7:5)

“We but mirror the world. All the tendencies present in the outer world are to be found in the world of our body. If we could change ourselves, the tendencies in the world would also change. As a man changes his own nature, so does the attitude of the world change towards him. This is the divine mystery supreme. A wonderful thing it is and the source of our happiness. We need not wait to see what others do.” –- Mahatma Gandhi

If you don’t like the moral character of America, change yourself. To improve America’s moral character, improve your own. It is that simple.

Arnold J. Toynbee began this conversation. He will have the last word.

“We are not doomed to make history repeat itself; it is open to us, through our own efforts, to give history, in our case, some new and unprecedented turn. As human beings, we are endowed with this freedom of choice, and we cannot shuffle off our responsibility upon the shoulders of God or nature. We must shoulder it ourselves. It is up to us, it is up to us to respond creatively to the challenges of our time.”

Dithering between the Extremes of Covid

On contentious issues within society, people generally line up in one of three groups: those extremely in favor, those extremely opposed, and a vast majority of non-committed in the middle. Out of these groups, the ones who drive the discussion and action are those who are seen as extremists, whether for or against. Those who comprise the middle-of-the-road (moderates) usually do not become heavily engaged, but simply “go with the flow”. The moderates may lean in either direction and lend support in various ways or express sympathy with the viewpoint, but do not generally make waves to any great degree.

This can be seen quite clearly in one instance recorded in the Old Testament of the Holy Bible–1 Kings 18 and 19, the story of the prophet Elijah and his contest with the prophets of the pagan gods Baal and Asherah. Read it for yourself. I do not have the time or space to tell it to you.

Human nature does not change. The group distinction I have laid out above is not unique to our time. It has been the norm for a long, long time, probably since the beginning of people grouping together and, certainly so since the dispersion into different languages at the Tower of Babel (see Genesis 11).

Elijah, working through King Ahab, brought the people of Israel together on Mount Carmel, asked them a simple question, and offered them a direct challenge. (Chapter 18, verse 21–New King James Version)

“How long will you falter between two opinions? If the LORD is God, follow Him: but if Baal, follow him.”

Seems pretty simple, doesn’t it? Here are two antagonistic viewpoints which are competing for your attention and support. Why do you dither between them? Why do you refuse to make a choice and set your course? Note that Elijah did not condemn them for their idolatrous practice of Baal worship. Neither did he laud them for their worship of Yahweh, the God of Israel. What he took them to task for was their refusal to make a decision. They tried to play both sides of the issue without any commitment to either.

There are three groups here. Elijah, an extremist on one side. The pagan prophets, extremists opposed to him. The people in the middle, unwilling to commit one way or the other.

We can see that today within the corona virus issue.

There are those who are pushing the narrative that it is a potentially existential threat to humankind. Everyone must wear a mask, submit to a lockdown, and give up their civil rights to destroy the pandemic. They are extremists. They are working hard to make their viewpoint dominant over and against all others.

Opposed to them is another set of extremists, those who refuse to accept this as true and see the virus as nothing more than a seasonal illness. They view face masks as ineffective and lockdowns as disastrous to society and the economy and will not accept that their civil rights must be abrogated for the salvation and security of society. They are extremists. They are working hard to ensure that the “official” viewpoint does NOT become the law of the land.

Between them is a very large group which takes the easy road of compliance: wearing of a face mask, social (anti-social) distancing, compliance with every rule the local Health(?) Board dictates that all should (must) obey. Follow the science. Trust the experts. Be kind, don’t be selfish. And on and on and on and on… Meaningless stuff. Worthless in the pursuit of truth. Devastating to the pursuit of liberty.

These people, the vast majority of society, will do whatever they are told. They may approve or disapprove, but it does not matter greatly to them. In order to avoid rocking the boat and cause trouble for themselves, they will comply. The term, “Go along to get along”, describes this group to a T and they will go to Hell if everyone else does. If it means that they have to go against the flow and stand out in the crowd, they will not do it.

“…broad is the way that leads to destruction and there are many who go in by it.” (Matthew 7:13)

Back to Elijah. It is revealing of human nature that when the question was put to the people, they did not respond. Nothing. Not a word. This shows that, even though they were aware of the struggle between the opposing forces, they did not want to commit to either side, probably out of fear that they might choose the wrong one and be punished for it. They were waiting to see which side was going to win and then, only then, when it was evident who the victor was would they proclaim their fealty. Only after the prophets of Baal had failed miserably in a very public way, only after Elijah had called down the fire of God which burned up everything in its path, also in a very public way, did the people swing decidedly to his camp, ready to do whatever he ordered them to.

“Now when all the people saw it, they fell on their faces; and they said, ‘The LORD, He is God! The LORD, He is God!'” And Elijah said to them, “Seize the prophets of Baal! Do not let one of them escape!” So they seized them; and Elijah brought them down to the Brook Kishon and executed them there.”

In this story, the prophets of Baal went to extremes to make their case and emerge triumphant. They knew what was at stake and it is certain that if they had won, Elijah’s head would have been on the chopping block. Today, the Corona Masters are frantically doing everything they can to invoke the blessing of their god–absolute power–because they know that if the public opinion ever swings against them, they are finished. I have no doubt that these people are losing sleep out of the inner fear that comes from the knowledge that they might not succeed. The main problem for them is that they have committed themselves completely and there is no going back to start over. This is a do or die situation for them.

We do not have to travel that road. While it may seem that the battle is going against us, we can be confident that our God, the Lord Jesus Christ, will come through for us, eventually gaining the upper hand and the victory. Eventually, truth always triumphs over evil. Our faith and trust in Him is the first line of defense and the main weapon of offense we have at our disposal and we need to exercise it to the fullest. This does not mean that we can simply sit back and allow the action to develop. We have to put our faith to work because if we do not, we are going to be slaughtered, figuratively at least, perhaps literally.

“…faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.” (James 2:17)

Elijah won his battle in one fell swoop. His miracle happened on a single moment. Ours will take time and we should understand that there will be times when we will wonder about the outcome. Charles Mackay put it quite emphatically and it rings as true today as the day he first spoke these words.

“Men, it has been well said, think in herds; it will be seen that they go mad in herds, while they only recover their senses slowly, and one by one.”

If there is one thing which is true about the current mess we are in, it is that society has gone insane in a massive, world-wide herd, but there are signs that we are starting to regain our senses. Slowly, one person at a time. Sooner or later, it will become evident to the masses that the power brokers, like the prophets of Baal, have shot their wad and the pendulum will swing.

No lockdowns! No mask mandates! No more! This is the stuff of decision. Make it.

Negotiation as a Tactic of War

After living through the last ten months under the “threat of extinction” by the dreaded pestilence known as the Corona Monster, a.k.a, Covid-19, I am thoroughly convinced that the central issue here is not about dying from a virus which has a 99.9%+ recovery rate, but more about being forced into a society of control and slavery. If this is correct, then some extremely wealthy and powerful persons are gaming the system to grasp everything and everyone in a vise-like grip from which there is no escape. It is the few vs. the many.

This is a war, a total war, between two opposing forces and it will not end until we are completely subjugated or they are completely destroyed.

On one side are those who only want to be free to live their lives according to their principles and beliefs in the best way they know how–in other words, most of us. We live and die, work, love, raise children in the best way we know how without having a great deal of influence in the moving of the rest of the world. Many of us are simply concerned with how we will get through today and have little or nothing left to give to anyone else.

On the other side are those have engineered and control the system we live in. These people use every opportunity to advance their power. It does not matter to them how much time it takes, how much it costs, or how many innocent people get hurt. As long as their cause moves forward, they are patient, but the important thing to remember is that they never stop grasping for more. They always push for more. They compromise when they have to, but the tactic is to negotiate so that they wind up further ahead than when they started. Two steps forward, one back.

As individual people who live in our own little corner of society, we do not have that luxury. If we give up anything through compromise and negotiation, we never get it back. The more we try to get along, the tighter the chains get. We have to learn to just say “NO!” and mean it.

In an article which focuses on the political standoff between the European Union bureaucracy and the countries of Poland and Hungary, Tom Luongo digs deep into this concept. The article is well worth the time it takes to read it. Below are some snippets which I have pulled. I could not have phrased these better.

“There comes a point where negotiation becomes surrender. Those actively undermining you will always demand more than their right.”

“Through bullying, bad arguments, derision and shaming the relentless pressure of sociopaths and psychopaths wears most people down to the point where they negotiate away something that they didn’t have to.”

“They get you to agree to putting on a mask to make people feel better, accepting “sensible” gun legislation, voting for the guy who promises to only take 25% of your income versus that guy that wants 40%, etc.”

“Negotiation is a natural part of human interaction. There’s nothing inherently wrong with it, as long as both sides approach the negotiation honestly.”

“But, in politics, especially when dealing with those of a particularly self-righteous leftism so common today — as as [sic] shorthand I’ll just call them Commies — negotiation for them is a tactic in a strategic war.”

“Because at the core of their argument is always the threat of violence at worst and emotional blackmail at best. And that forms the basis for a negotiation that truly isn’t one, but made to look like you have a say in the outcome.”

“But in reality you don’t. They want all that you have and are willing to take it from you one bite at a time.”

“This is why, in all things political from the local to the trans-national, every small victory codified into some rule or same treaty is used as a springboard to the next victory and so on. There is no end to the war until one side achieves total domination or the other side, backed into a corner, stands its ground.”

Precisely! This cuts to the heart of the matter and considering the current situation with the Covid narrative, we ought to realize that if we give in to the pressure, we will have lost a very significant chunk of ground which may never be regained.

For the “power brokers and the Machine”, negotiation is a tactic. Compromise is a tactic. The strategy is to overwhelm us with so much firepower on so many fronts that we surrender here, there, everywhere. The ultimate goal is to realize victory in the war by gaining total control over everyone.

We dare not allow this to happen. We must suffer the losses. We must savor the victories. We must never lose sight of our own ultimate goal–which is personal freedom and liberty to choose how we live our own lives. For those who call themselves Christian, this should be recognizable immediately as another front opened up in the age-old battle between Good and Evil–personified respectively as Jesus the Christ and Satan.

Negotiate to gain advantage and time. Give ground if necessary. Do not compromise your principles. Never surrender. Never surrender.

The Defiance is Building, Part 3

There are times when it seems that bad news is all you hear.

This is not one of those times, though, because it appears that resistance to dictatorial edicts and tyrannical orders is springing up all over the country, particularly in the more liberal areas which are governed by left-wing politicians and bureaucrats.

The latest example is from Virginia, where one county, Campbell County, has declared itself a First Amendment Sanctuary in response to Governor His High-Minded Tyrant Ralph Northam’s announcement of more extensive Covid-19 restrictions.

There is hope. The sleeping giant of the American spirit of liberty and freedom from authoritarian rule is starting to stir. People everywhere are beginning to see what is happening and, more importantly, what is likely to happen if the trend is not stopped and reversed. This “enlightenment” may not be visible yet in many locations, but it is there and only needs time to germinate and spread.

If you live in one of these areas of the country where there is serious pushback against the illogical, irrational, insane rules and dictates of the Corona Crowd, then you should be thanking God for those who are doing the work, praying for them, and supporting them in any way you can–even if you only are able to send your county commissioner or sheriff a “Thank You” card. Actions like this are absolutely necessary in the battle to regain our right to breathe free. Get involved–somehow, some way. Your life and your freedom depend on it.

The Defiance is Building, Part 2

California’s governor resident dictator, Gavin “Gruesome” Newsom (and others like him) has a problem on his hands. In his zeal to protect his citizens from harm due to the ‘Corona Monster’ shut down the state and destroy the civil liberties of his constituents, he has alienated many of the very people who are expected to carry out his orders, namely, county sheriffs who are elected to the office at the county level. Sheriffs answer to the people, not to the governor.

From an article at Zero Hedge, just before Thanksgiving Day, and another one more current, also at Zero Hedge.

[Editor’s Update, Dec. 6, 2020: See also this article on the Orange County sheriff’s refusal to obey the governor’s edicts.]

It seems that a lot of the sheriffs around the LA metropolitan area have had enough. Riverside County Sheriff, Chad Bianco, puts it in plain English and minces no words in telling the governor what he thinks. Here are a few excerpts from an address he gave recently:

“I believe that all jobs are essential to someone. Leaders do not threaten, attempt to intimidate, or cause fear; bullies do.”

Isn’t that the truth! Way to go, Sheriff Bianco!! Chad Bianco for Governor!!!

“As has been our position from the beginning of this pandemic, the Sheriff’s department is asking and expecting Riverside County residents to act responsibly and do what they can to protect themselves and their family from contracting the virus. Wear your mask and practice social distancing.”

Except for the last sentence, I agree with this position. If Bianco is asking people to be responsible for themselves and their families, then he ought to expect that they are capable of making up their own minds about masks and (anti)social distancing. Telling them to be responsible and then telling them how to act is contradictory.

“While the Governor’s office and the state has threatened action against violators, the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department will not be blackmailed, bullied, or used as muscle against Riverside County residents in the enforcement of the Governor’s orders.”

Good! Make it stick! Sheriff Bianco, your office has enough to do without being concerned about someone out walking their dog, visiting a friend, or celebrating Christmas with family. Hold your ground and do not give in. Your constituents will rise up and call you blessed. (Proverbs 31:28)

“I wish you all a very Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and a safe and happy New Year.”

Right back at you, Sheriff Bianco. No politically correct garbage here, just a straight out blessing of good will, cheer, and encouragement. I wish you the very best. We need more men and women like you who are willing to stand up straight and declare where they will draw the line.

As far as Newsom goes , California citizens are gearing up a recall effort to boot him out of the ritzy mansion he currently calls home. It would be tempting to say that the people of California deserve what they have, but I applaud their effort to correct at least one of the mistakes they have made. Throwing him out cannot happen soon enough.

Political Correctness Meets the Virus. Now, That’s Holiday!

Ok, Ok, enough already. Let’s take a break.

I am going to abstain from beating up on the Corona Monster for just a little bit and discuss a subject which will be “big news” very soon, that is, the politically incorrect holiday known as Christmas. Yes, yes, I know, that deadly, horrific, existential threat known as seasonal flu Covid is all we are supposed to talk about and everyone knows we are all going to die from it, but there are some Politically Incorrect Things which need to be addressed, especially at this time of year. Otherwise we might forget, ignore, or deliberately shove them aside in our Personally Selfish desire to be happy, generous, and loving toward those who are around us.

(If you’ve gotten this far, you probably recognize this as satire. If you don’t, you should. It is meant to be.)

Consider some of the ways in which we can no longer celebrate Christmas, oops, I mean X-mas. I thought about saying holidays, but that’s not good either, because it evolved from the phrase “holy days”, which is, God ACLU forbid, an expression of religion and we can’t have that.  Besides, the Grinch Gavin “Gruesome” Newsom has cancelled it, along with all his other cheer-killing, Nazi-imitating, self-ignoring Executive Orders.

  • The song I’m Dreaming of a White Christmas gets a triple whammy. White is racist, Christ is verboten. Probably, any bad speller could also conclude that “mas” is Catholic and, therefore, religiously intolerant against other religions and, not only that, is culturally appropriated from the Spanish language which really ought to be spoken only by those who are native to it. No, no, White Christmas has three strikes against it before it even starts and, as everyone knows, three strikes means you’re out. No sense in even going to bat. Just sit down and shut up.
  • Candy canes are to be abolished. Yes, candy canes. You see, they are shaped like the letter J, which, to the feverish minds of The Enlightened Ones, correlates to an endorsement of Christianity, since the word Jesus starts with a J. Not only that, they incorporate the colors red (blood) and white (purity) in them.
  • Christmas trees have got to go! Christmas tree farms use up an excessive, inordinate amount of scarce resources, water, for instance. Ignorant people then cut them down, use them for a week or two, and either dump them in a landfill or burn them, contributing to global warming. Plastic trees are no better, since they require the use of oil and energy to create. Hey ho, hey ho, Christmas trees have got to go!
  • Baby, it’s cold outside! Not only does this song, decades old and well beloved, communicate the hazards and reality of “date rape” by taking advantage of a woman’s confessed inability (Ooooohhhhh! The sexism!! The misogony!!!) to “Just Say No” and mean it, but it is also a refutation of the widespread belief in global warming. Looking through the lens of reality and logical deduction, though, at this time of year, it usually is cold outside.
  • Rudolph, the movie (also decades old and well beloved) is dripping with masculine toxicity and encourages bullying.
  • Santa Claus himself is an Old White Man. Any one of these attributes (deficiencies?) is enough to disqualify him. All three together…, perish the thought!! Plus, he gives naughty children lumps of coal, rewarding bad behavior with bad environmental practice. In addition, he forces his reindeer to fly during bad weather, making him a certified animal abuser. PETA, where are you?
  • Speaking of coal, it seems that Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Ebenezer Scrooge really ought to be saluted as a paragon of good environmental practice, since he was always demanding that Bob Cratchit reduce his use of coal and candles, preferring instead to live in the cold and dark. Bill Gates Scrooge also wanted to reduce the “excess population”, thereby creating a better world for the ones (especially himself) who were left. Scrooge for President! Or better yet, CEO of Microsoft. The only problem, though, is that Scrooge came to his senses, raised Cratchit’s wages, paid (voluntarily, out of his own pocket!!) for Tiny Tim’s medical treatment, and started financially supporting the slaughter of geese to be used for food by people. Where, oh, where is PETA? PETA? We need you.
  • In like manner, the Grinch (not Gavin Newsom) should be likewise hoisted to a position of idol worship. Not only did he condemn the Who’s down in Whoville for their greedy, conspicuous consumerism, he attempted, in a manner consistent with his own philosophy, to force them to mend their ways by taking away all the good things they had accumulated to celebrate the holiday, I mean, X-mas. Must have been taking lessons from Anthony Fauci. By the way, doesn’t X-mas sound a lot like X-men, which should be enough to make it a sexist and anti-feminist term? In addition, the Grinch is green, which everyone knows is good, as opposed to white, which isn’t. But, in the end, the Grinch, like Scrooge before him, also repented of his sins and started celebrating Christmas, including carving up the “roast beast”. PETA, PETA, calling PETA!!! Where are you when you’re needed?

Covid!!! Where is it all going to end?

At any rate (and this is real), Merry Christmas to one and all! Enjoy yourselves and those who are with you. Without apologies to anyone.

What are We doing to our Kids?

This is the headline of a recent article in the New York Times which actually questions the policy of keeping young children isolated from each other and refusing to allow them to be…well, kids. Of course, there are some sour notes hit in this article, but it is, at the very least, an admission that the paranoid actions taken may have been mistaken and should be rectified to some degree.

What is ironic is the sub-headline.

“Keeping children masked and separated is necessary. It could also undermine their bodies’ ability to learn how to fight pathogens.”

Yes, this appears to be a contradiction. Keep children masked and separated so that they don’t get sick, even though it will probably compromise and weaken their immune systems making them more susceptible to illnesses later in life. No matter how it might affect their ability to fight off future infections, we MUST keep them safe today. My own take on this is that we have determined that our own fears and selfishness are all that matters, so…screw the kids.

Jeffrey Tucker has this to say about it.

“Scrub and spray everything with chemicals, bathe in Purell, mask up, stand no nearer to anyone else than six feet, stay away from crowds, douse yourself with alcohol, wash your hands and face raw, protect yourself from germs at all costs.” 

“Some nations are closed completely. No one in or out.” 

“We panic about “cases” even when they say nothing about severe consequences. Avoidance and finally suppression are the watchwords of the day, for a virus that is relatively mild by any historical standard, as Holman Jenkins just explained:

“U.S. government scientists now estimate that 40% of cases are asymptomatic and 80% of symptomatic cases are mild—in short, 88% of subjects don’t know they are infected or have no great incentive to find out if they are suffering from Covid or some more familiar bug.””

“We could also mention the 99.9% survival rate, and that doesn’t consider the wildly disproportionate risk between the sick and healthy.”

“Is this an experiment? Yes, and likely a deadly one.” 

“What precisely are we doing to ourselves? What are we doing to children?”

These are exactly the right questions to ask AND demand answers to. What are we doing to ourselves? To our children? Concerning ourselves, we deserve everything that is coming to us because we have spent our entire lifetimes building and perfecting the “system” which is starting to payback in spades. We should have no complaints about what we receive.

The far greater concern is what kind of world are we creating for our children in which they will have to suffer greatly because of our own stupid, short-sighted selfishness.

There is only one correct answer for this insanity: Let the Children Go! Let the kids be kids. Let them play in the dirt with other kids. Let them trade snotty rags with each other. Let them get up close and personal with germs of all kinds. Let them develop strong, vibrant immune systems which will serve them well for the rest of their lives.

Let them be free again to be kids. They deserve nothing less.

Seat belts and Face Masks: Not a good fit.

I am constantly amazed at the levels of unreasonable arguments the Covid Cult can come up with in order to justify their rationale that everyone should cover their face with a scrap of cloth or a bit of paper to save the world from a horrible death.

For instance, there has been much made over the “similarity” between wearing a face mask and wearing a seat belt. After all, it is the same thing, right? The State mandates that seat belts be worn by everyone who is motoring on the roadways (for their own protection, of course), so it follows that the State can mandate that face masks be worn by everyone who is not comatose and maybe even those who are. Again, to protect people from themselves potential danger.

However, there are a few things wrong with this argument.

  • The State owns the roads. It licenses drivers and autos to use those roads. It develops and enforces the rules which all drivers are expected to adhere to and, if they do not, it punishes them for the infractions. Whether you agree or disagree with State ownership of roads is irrelevant and a completely separate issue. The State owns them, it can do with them whatever it wants. This is a property rights question and should not be confused with a public health crisis in a pandemic.
  • The State does not own our bodies or faces. It does not own the air we breathe. It does not own the space in which we live or move. These are all ours, personally and privately, to use as we see fit, within certain restrictions, such as, not violating someone else’s air, body, or space. The State has no business trying to restrict, regulate, or order what we do with our air, our bodies, and our spaces. This, too, is a property rights issue and, as such, must be kept in perspective.
  • Seat belts are intended for one purpose only–to afford some measure of protection to the wearer in the event that an accident occurs. There are decades of data which prove that a person who wears a seat belt has a better chance of survival in an accident than a person who does not. This cannot be denied. However, a seat belt only protects one person–the wearer. It is useless and has no value to anyone else.
  • Face masks (I am told) are meant to protect, not only the wearer, but also those people the wearer comes into close proximity or contact with. If they protected only the wearer, the comparison with seat belts might be a little more palatable, but that is not the assertion. “You must wear them to protect others!” is the narrative. This moves the argument from one of property rights to the moral sphere, which are absolutely not the same.
  • Seat belts are of value only to the wearer AND ONLY THEN if an accident occurs. Under normal driving, the belt offers nothing more than, well, for want of a better word, assurance. However, if an accident does occur, it can be the difference between life and death. The key thing to remember, though, is that a motorist MUST be involved in an accident BEFORE value is received from the seat belt.
  • If a face mask and seat belt use are synonomous, then it must follow that face masks are valuable ONLY to the wearer AND ONLY THEN if he/she is “accidentally” infected. Wait a minute, though. Isn’t the argument that the mask is supposed to prevent the infection (accident), not to offer insurance against harm in the event of one. Not only are face masks dissimilar to seat belts in the persons they protect, but also in the manner of protection.

To be honest, if an automobile analogy is to be made with respect to face masks, it would be more useful to equate the mask to a Tesla self-driving auto, which (I am told) is supposed to protect not only those within the car, but other motorists within the vicinity as well. Considering Tesla’s “safety record” (I use that term loosely), this comparison might hold up quite well, since face masks also do not perform to the expectation of those who believe in them.

Seat belts do. No comparison.

Oh, by the way, I nearly missed this. Whether we are talking about seat belts or masks does not matter. The State can make all the rules it wants to and try as hard as it can to enforce those rules, but at the end of the day, it cannot prevent auto accidents from happening nor can it prevent someone from getting sick by catching a cold or flu virus. The State certainly cannot prevent a death, regardless of the cause, when the Grim Reaper calls.

God can. Perhaps we should be talking about misplaced faith.

Well, This is Embarrassing

In a very recent article (almost immediately pulled, but still available on the Wayback Machine), Yanni Gu has written about a study conducted by Genevieve Briand, assistant program director of the Applied Economics master’s degree program at Johns Hopkins University.

In a critical analysis of the effect of the Covid-19 virus on U. S. deaths, using data from the CDC, Briand found that from early February to early September:

Surprisingly, the deaths of older people stayed the same before and after COVID-19. Since COVID-19 mainly affects the elderly, experts expected an increase in the percentage of deaths in older age groups. However, this increase is not seen from the CDC data. In fact, the percentages of deaths among all age groups remain relatively the same.

And that:

50,000 to 70,000 deaths are seen both before and after COVID-19, indicating that this number of deaths was normal long before COVID-19 emerged…not only has COVID-19 had no effect on the percentage of deaths of older people, but it has also not increased the total number of deaths. 

Also that:

These data analyses suggest that in contrast to most people’s assumptions, the number of deaths by COVID-19 is not alarming. In fact, it has relatively no effect on deaths in the United States.

Now, this is starting to look interesting. A bona fide, heavyweight researcher from Johns Hopkins University has come out with numbers which do not coincide with those officially promoted as gospel. In fact, Briand’s study has concluded that Covid-19 has caused virtually no more deaths in society than would have happened in any normal year.

It’s no wonder the link to the study was pulled as soon as it hit the Internet. Obviously, someone did not want this information to become public knowledge!

U.S. total deaths for six months, from mid-March to mid-September, totaled about 1.7 million, of which 200,000, or 12% of total deaths, are COVID-19-related. If you extrapolate these numbers to encompass an entire year, the number of deaths would equal about 3.4 million, which is only slightly higher than the average of the last five years. Factoring in a growing population might easily explain the increase–larger population equals more deaths.

The official number of Covid related deaths in 2020 through mid-November is about 260, 000. Six months, 200, 000 deaths, 33, 333 deaths/month. Eight months, 260, 000 deaths, 32, 500 deaths/month. Near enough to equal to satisfy any statistician. In other words, the number of deaths due to Covid has held steady throughout eight months of the year.

When Briand started digging deep into the numbers, though, she found that there were significant anomalies in them. For instance, even though there was a substantial increase in the reported Covid deaths, there was also a corresponding decrease in deaths from other causes AND that these two very nearly cancelled each other. Furthermore, heart disease is always the #1 killer in the U. S, but Briand found that in some weeks, Covid was listed as the most common cause of death, over and above heart disease.

From the article by Gu:

“When Briand looked at the 2020 data during that seasonal period, COVID-19-related deaths exceeded deaths from heart diseases. This was highly unusual since heart disease has always prevailed as the leading cause of deaths. However, when taking a closer look at the death numbers, she noted something strange. As Briand compared the number of deaths per cause during that period in 2020 to 2018, she noticed that instead of the expected drastic increase across all causes, there was a significant decrease in deaths due to heart disease. Even more surprising, as seen in the graph below, this sudden decline in deaths is observed for all other causes. “

“This trend is completely contrary to the pattern observed in all previous years. Interestingly, as depicted in the table below, the total decrease in deaths by other causes almost exactly equals the increase in deaths by COVID-19. This suggests, according to Briand, that the COVID-19 death toll is misleading. Briand believes that deaths due to heart diseases, respiratory diseases, influenza and pneumonia may instead be recategorized as being due to COVID-19.”

This anomaly is impossible to explain except to say that the data were manipulated for some unknown, but highly suspect, purpose. In fact, when young men dying in motorcycle accidents are classified as a Covid-related death, then it is natural to assume that many other deaths have also been attributed to this “exorbitantly mortal disease”. According to Gu:

“The CDC classified all deaths that are related to COVID-19 simply as COVID-19 deaths. Even patients dying from other underlying diseases but are infected with COVID-19 count as COVID-19 deaths. This is likely the main explanation as to why COVID-19 deaths drastically increased while deaths by all other diseases experienced a significant decrease.”

And Briand sums it up quite nicely.

“All of this points to no evidence that COVID-19 created any excess deaths. Total death numbers are not above normal death numbers. We found no evidence to the contrary.”

In other words, since the total number of deaths from all causes has remained remarkably steady, before the appearance of Covid and after, it can be deduced that the virus is not the existential threat nor uncompromising killer that it has been hyped to be. In other words, it is no more dangerous and deadly than other seasonal illnesses we are accustomed to enduring.

In other words, we have been lied to from the very beginning and, as I noted earlier, it is no wonder that someone tried to pull the plug on this very revealing information.

What is the difference this year? Hype. The constant drumbeat in the media 24/7 shrieking about the “pandemic” and the fear and panic generated by it.

Why? Answer that question for yourself.

The Beautiful and the Ugly: Thanksgiving Day 2020

Ahhhhh! Thanksgiving Day.

The popular saying is that Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year, but I disagree with that. The one day that I spend annually with family, friends, neighbors, co-workers, etc., in a spirit of gratefulness and love is absolutely much better than any other day of the year, including Christmas.

This year was no different. Six people, three households, one spirit. And the dog who was surprisingly well behaved. The food was superb, the conversation uplifting, the personal relationships strengthened. Not a word about religion, virtually nothing about politics, very little about Covid. Just a beautiful, beautiful day. I look forward to many more and I wish this blessing upon you as well.

However, this is in sharp contrast to what some people want to impose on us. Joe Biden, who may be the country’s next Emperor, for instance, is now advising that we may have to forego our holidays due to the ongoing saga known as the Corona Monster. Gavin Newsom, the Dictator of California is attempting to shut down virtually any gathering of people, regardless of the occasion. Anthony Fauci, the mouth of the medical establishment tyranny has made it plain he wants to cancel Christmas because too many people are having too much fun. Er, I mean, because they refuse to stay away from each other and insist on social closeness. In addition, average citizens around the country are being encouraged to snitch on their neighbors for “breaking the rules.”

What a joke! What a disaster if these wanna-be power grabbers manage to make their efforts stick. If that pattern becomes the very first event of the winter season, then we are indeed headed into a “very dark winter” as Joe Biden has predicted. Of course, if that becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy, then it will be due to his ability to pull it off as the Chief Power Broker of the Land. President of the USA, in other words.

If I only paid attention to the bad news, I would be severely depressed concerning the future of humanity and might seriously contemplate “cashing in my chips before the game was over”, but I have hope that this horrific, hysterical nightmare will soon be over. The resistance is building, people are starting to develop backbone, the truth is being revealed day after day so there can be no excuses for not understanding. We are going to beat this monster (not only the corona virus, but also the heavy-handed reaction to it and the paranoid fear it has engendered). However, it might take a good bit longer than I expect and it probably will be a lot more painful than anything we have experienced so far.

No matter. We (some of us) will emerge on the other side stronger, more confident, more secure in our liberty as free citizens. Whether or not I live to see it happen is of no consequence. I know what I believe and I will work toward that end, even if I never get to experience it personally.

Somebody will and that is good enough for me.

A Blessing of Thanksgiving

It is Wednesday, November 25, 2020. The evening before Thanksgiving Day, the day when most of us gather together with family, friends, and neighbors to celebrate our gratefulness for what we have and the blessings of life.

For just a moment, I am going to overlook all the trouble we have been experiencing and say this to each and every one of you. Enjoy the day. Enjoy the companionship. Enjoy the food. Enjoy the napping. Enjoy the beauty of life as it is meant to be lived–gladly and thankfully. May you be blessed in it!

Have a great Thanksgiving Day!

The Defiance is Building

This just caught my attention. It is five minutes of pure defiance of the “law” in Buffalo, NY, in which sheriff’s deputies and health department officials were ordered out of and escorted off private property. This is one example of successful resistance to the draconian, unconstitutional edicts handed down by the State of New York. If private citizens can accomplish this in New York, they can make it happen anywhere in the US.

It will be imitated.

Who Decides What is Essential?

In the recent lockdowns across various states and cities, numerous people were told their businesses and jobs were not essential and that they had to stop working, go home, and stay there. For the common good, of course. Stay safe. Stay home. Starve to death.

This immediately raises the question though: what constitutes an “essential” job? Since governors, mayors, and other assorted “officials” have assumed that they know the answer to that question, it seems that there really ought to be some method of determination, a criteria for selecting one occupation as essential and another as not. How is this done?

What is an “essential” business? What is an “essential” job? How is that determined? Who does the picking and choosing? What are the criteria? These questions ought to be answered out loud in public. Unfortunately, too many businesses have been shut down and too many people have lost their income because some “official” decided on his own that they were not essential.

Fact is, when you get right down to it, the only things essential and absolutely necessary to sustain life are food, water, and shelter. If any work is deemed “non-essential”, it should be that which gets in the way of people providing these necessary items for themselves and their own. In other words, the work of those who try to restrict the freedom of others. Specifically, government officials, bureaucrats, busybodies, snitches, and other stuffed shirts.

Fact is, when the only income a single mom can earn comes from her job as a barmaid, a waitress, or a hairdresser, then her job is essential. Who is the President, governor of the state she lives in, or Anthony Fauci to tell her otherwise?

As I said, food, water, shelter. That is all anyone needs to live. Everything else we can live without.

Not only hairdressers and tattoo artists, but auto mechanics, HVAC techs, gunsmiths, jewelry makers, realtors, politicians, lawyers, statisticians, police officers and the military, prostitutes, home remodelers (how I make my living, no one actually NEEDS a nicer house), grass cutters, landscapers, silver miners, steel workers, museum curators, musicians, saloon proprietors, laundromat operators, seamstresses, etc., etc., and many, many more. Together, all make up the economy and what an economy it is! It is possible to purchase anything you want or desire BECAUSE someone provides it. Anything you want or desire has value and anyone who sells that to you is providing value to the economy.

To say that if they go away then society loses nothing of value is the same as saying that every job outside of the absolute essentials has no value. The people who provide the “essentials” are the only ones who are doing anything of value. It follows then that, if anyone wants to provide “value” to the economy, then he or she needs to work in the food, water, or shelter industries. Everything else can just dry up and blow away.

What a boring, pitiful society that would be! It would probably revert back to a hunter-gatherer type in which our only concerns revolved around how to get enough food to eat today, finding a source of water to slake our immediate thirst, and bedding down in a “safe” space for the night. Not to mention that the number of people alive would drastically plummet until there were only a few able to subsist on the land.

How do you make your living? Are you one of the “essentials” or is your work “unnecessary”? Are you willing to live in a society which has nothing except the bare necessities? I am not. I am willing to bet you are not either.

Covid: Distraction from the Real Danger

+33.1%. -32.9%. -6.9%

What are these numbers and why do they have any significance to our lives? Respectively, they are the rate of change in the GDP (gross domestic product) of the United States in the third quarter (3Q), the second quarter (2Q), and the first quarter (1Q), in the year 2020. For reference, see here and here.

As the saying goes, give me the good news first.

It looks as if the third quarter GDP had a very substantial increase over the second quarter and in a “normal” year, this would be cause for jubilant celebration. However, there are some things to take into account here which should cause the exuberance to throttle back.

Most of this has been caused, not by an actual increase in productivity within general society, but by extraordinary government spending related to the Covid-19 crisis. For example, stimulus checks sent to everyone have been received and spent, skewing the percentages and making it appear that the country is in the recovery stage. However, that “shot in the arm” has (so far) been a singular event and due to a deadlocked government probably will not be repeated any time soon.

Of course, miracles do happen and it is possible that Nancy Pelosi and Mitch McConnell will come to agreement, shake hands, er, I mean, bump elbows, and congratulate themselves for a job well done. Right, and pigs fly too! At least, though, I am partly correct. They will congratulate themselves, whether the job is well done or not.

If we don’t get another round of stimulus and Joe Biden gets to impose a “very dark winter” because of the panic and hysteria surrounding the Corona Monster, we will likely see a substantial drop in the economy, if not in the 4Q 2020, then almost certainly in 1Q and 2Q 2021.

But, enough of the prognostications anyway. Let’s get back to the actual percentages and explore these from a purely mathematical perspective.

Assume that the economy at the beginning of the year 2020 had a base value of 100. Using the reported GDP drop of 6.9% for the first quarter means that on April 1, 2020, the economy had a base value of 93.1. In the second quarter, the economy contracted an additional 32.9% from that new value. This resulted in a base value on July 1 of only 62.47, which translates to an economic loss from the first of the year of almost 38%.

But, you say, the economy rebounded 33.1% in the third quarter, so we’re almost back to where we were at the beginning of the year. Not so fast, though, since mathematics doesn’t work that way. Keep in mind that we are not dealing with simple numbers, but percentages, and 33.1% of the base value at the end of the second quarter is only 62.47. Therefore, multiplying the base value (62.47) by the percentage increase (33.1) produces an increase of only 20.68 (rounded), which added to the base value results in a total economy of 83.15, or an overall loss of almost 17% from the total economy at the start of the year.

Realistically, in order to bring the economy at the end of 2020 back to where it was at the beginning would require another increase of around 20% in the GDP through the fourth quarter, which is not likely to happen. Most of the 3Q increase was due to government intervention and, since that intervention has not been seen in the 4Q, it seems probable that any increase in GDP will be severely scaled back and may actually show up in the negative column.

Mix in the all-too-likely spectre of officially ordered lockdowns by power-hungry presidents, governors, mayors, and county health departments which will have the immediate effect of throwing vast numbers of persons out of work, drastically reducing their productivity, and the amount of money they have to spend. It should be apparent that the economy is on very shaky ground.

And we thought 2020 was bad. A few years (quarters?) from now, we will call these the Good Old Days.

All for the Cause, Dear.

Joe Biden has won and will be directing the American State as President for the next four years.

Well, maybe. We’ll know for sure in a little while after all the recounts, challenges, and court verdicts. Or maybe we will see the election decided in the House of Representatives which the Republicans will dominate, guaranteeing Trump the victory.

I don’t care one way or the other. This post isn’t about the outcome of the election, whether it was fair or fraudulent, whether Congress will determine the winner or the MSM will. Instead, I want to focus on the idea, quite prevalent in conservative circles, that the Corona Monster will fade from view now that Biden has been (theoretically, at least) proclaimed as the next king.

One question which must be answered is this. Did Biden and the Democrats promote the Covid-19 panic pandemic for the sake of wresting the presidency away from Donald Trump? Of course not! How could anyone be so crass as to even consider such a preposterous theory? Right, and I am not good at hiding my sarcasm either. What cannot be denied, however, is that the major news media, in every form, which has been trying to throw Trump under the bus for more than four years has also been the same media which has been pumping “Covid, Covid, Covid” into our consciousness non-stop, 24/7, for at least nine months. In fact, this same media has assiduously attempted to squelch any and all dissent from and opposition to the mainstream current of thought on the virus.

Which brings up the question again. Now that Biden has “won”, will the virus somehow magically fade away? There are those who think so, but I am not one of them. In fact, I think the opposite will happen and we will experience Act II. Second verse, same as the first, except louder and a whole lot worse.

I have my reasons, two of which are listed below.

First, for the State which always gains power and control through crises, but never gives them back when the crisis ends, this has been a good run. A very good run, indeed! The last nine or ten months have shown what happens to a world when irrational fear takes over and people are willing to do anything to eliminate the cause of that fear. The blind, unthinking, slavish reaction to the corona virus has been astounding and, to a logical mind, unbelievable. Except that we have seen it happen in real time to real people. Why would those who have gained mightily from the crisis give back anything to those from whom it was taken? There is only one answer: They wouldn’t. They won’t.

Second, and this may be more important, is that there is nothing to be gained by unilaterally announcing that the virus has been defeated because Biden “won”. Rather, there would be a lot to lose if something like that happened. Start with the pharmaceutical companies which would lose all that beautiful money if the “deadly pestilence” suddenly was declared manageable. Or on a more mundane level, imagine the shock and disillusionment if millions of people suddenly found out that they had been used and lied to for nearly a year just so that Trump could be ousted. (Forget the fact that they were used and lied to for much longer and in myriad other ways.) If they were told that corona was no longer a threat and the country thanked them for their “service” (loss of income, loss of job, loss of business, loss of trust, loss of relationship, loss of home, loss of dignity and self-respect, etc.), there would be a howl of outrage which would eclipse anything we have heard for a long time. The torches and pitchforks would come out. Bigly!

And politicians and medical “experts” would quail at the sight and sound of it.

Nawhhh! The virus, whether it is real or not, will continue to spread. It is in the interest of the powers-that-be to keep the momentum going. It is not going to stop. Instead, the whole scenario will be shifted into second gear and the accelerator will be floored.

Watch for this to occur if Biden wins. Watch for it to occur if Trump does. Watch for it. It’s a done deal.

The Broad Way of Compliance

There is something odd about this corona virus panic, er, pandemic that is intriguing. Consider the whole face mask situation.

We have been told (hectored, nagged, browbeaten) to wear face masks for months now to the point where it is not uncommon to see near-universal compliance. Widespread coverage, please pardon the pun. Yet, in the wearing of these masks, there is nothing like a concerted effort on the part of many to ensure that they are being worn “properly” or “effectively”.

How many times have you been out in public, surrounded by a sea of masks, but many of them are pulled down below the nose, supposedly to allow the wearer to breathe more easily. How many times do you see someone wearing the mask below their chin, which is just a completely useless application. Or they are constantly fiddling with the adjustment, touching the mask against all the “rules”, moving it up, down, or sideways, supposedly to make it fit better and, perhaps, allowing for easier breathing. Or maybe masks are “required” for entry, but a large percentage of the people inside simply ignore the signs and go about with bare faces and no one says anything to them about it.

These things (and more) tell me that the vast majority of people really don’t believe the propaganda that is being passed off as medical truth. If they did, they would follow the orders advice religiously, as if their lives depended on it, which they are constantly assured is the truth. Oh, there are true believers out there and I have some (small) respect for them even though I think they are deluded, but most people are probably just going along with the farce because it is easier and less complicated than standing up for what they know to be true.

Cloth or paper masks really don’t have any effect on the transmission of aerosolized corona viruses and will not prevent anyone from spreading the disease or contracting it. N95 masks which are individually fitted and tightly sealed might, but the average mask does not. Instead, this has become a charade, a masquerade, in which most of the participants know and realize that the game they are playing is false. Yet, they continue on, acting as if their role actually might contribute in some meaningful way to the overall success of the show.

Utter theater, with the curtain already lifting on Act II. Second verse, same as the first. Little bit louder and a whole lot worse.

Why? I can think of at least two reasons which apply here.

  1. Peer pressure and public opinion. It is much easier to go with the flow than to go against the current. After all, if everyone is doing it, then who am I to say that it is wrong or ill-advised? And I really don’t want to incur the wrath of the mob onto my own head, so I’ll just become a white sheep in a herd of white sheep, minding my own business and not drawing attention to myself–like a black sheep would.
  2. In the world of men, there are only three types: those who order, those who resist orders, and those who follow orders. The first two categories number just a few of the general population. The vast majority are made up of those who jump when someone tells them to. It is hard, perhaps impossible, for the average person to resist or disobey an order from a perceived authority, even when that person knows or suspects that the order is wrong. The compliance of the German people in the Nazi era is a good example of this.

If you give them a choice, the mass of people will always take the easiest path. This correlates with what Jesus Christ said about human nature. (Matthew 7:13-14)

“Enter by the narrow gate, for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.”

Considering the topic of this post, it would be well to point out the very next verse.

“Beware of false prophets who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves.”

There are those who seek power to order. There are those who resist those who seek power to order. And then there are those who are taken in by the message of false prophets.

Time for a little introspection, perhaps?

Will You Be Compliant Or Not?

Where do you draw the line between standing up for your beliefs and caving in to the dictates of someone else? At what point will you say, “Enough!” How far will you back up, hoping that you will not ever have to stand your ground and resist the demands that are being put on you?

This is the question that people have to answer. How far indeed?

If you give ground on one issue in order to avoid trouble, then you are more likely to give ground on another related issue, again, to avoid trouble. The problem is, that if you give up enough, sooner or later you will find that you have nothing left. Benjamin Franklin said it so well 265 years ago:

“Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.”

I might restate this, as others have, that those who try to purchase temporary safety at the expense of necessary liberty will eventually find that they have lost both liberty and safety. Such is the dilemma today concerning the furor over face masks to (supposedly) mitigate against the “dread pestilence” of Covid-19.

Allan Stevo has this to say about the progression of refusing to hold your ground. In an article on Lew Rockwell, he writes,

“Because if you will wear the face mask, then you will take the vaccine. If you will wear the face mask, you will believe the election results. If you will wear the face mask, you will accept the lockdown. If you will wear the face mask, you will let your mother die alone. If you will wear the face mask, you will let your son be buried with no funeral. If you will wear the face mask, when historians one day call it necessary and normal, you will agree. If you will wear the face mask, then 2020 will be tolerable to you, and you will learn to adapt to the worst in humanity, rather than to demand the best.”

“When you wear the face mask, you tell the world that you are someone who will not identify his boundaries, communicate his boundaries, or defend his boundaries. You are instead someone with flexible boundaries, waiting for the right confidence man to walk all over you.”

Where is your line in the sand? At what point do you refuse to back up any further, regardless of the consequences? I am still sorting this out for myself on many fronts, but of one thing I am sure–if I am ordered to wear a mask by some government agent or agency under pain of punishment, then I will tell them to do their worst. If the governor of Montana decides to issue an edict requiring that everyone wear a face mask, then I will defy him on the constitutional grounds that he does not have that authority.

Greg Gianforte, take note! I will not comply. My face is my face and no one will tell me to cover it up.

The Cult of Ludicrous Belief

Without getting into the “science” (sarcasm intended), it should be noted that the corona virus is many times smaller than even the smallest opening within the weave of the mask. In addition, the masks always fit loosely around the face allowing airflow around them, thus destroying any argument that they effectively stop the entry or exit of the virus from the body. Nevertheless, people still demand that they be worn, not only personally, but by everyone in the mistaken belief that safety can be achieved so long as participation is universal.

woman and child sitting inside vehicle

Science be damned. It is the belief which is crucial and in this, Covid-19 has become equal to a religion. A cult religion, if you will, which rational, clear-thinking persons should reject out of hand as preposterous.

This is not substantially any different than the belief that wearing tin foil wrapped around your head will shield you from radiation or the reading of your mind by nefarious governments. There are numerous people around the world who subscribe to this, yet they are usually seen as delusional and the whole theory is generally dismissed as “crack-pot”.

Tin Foil Hats That Shield the Thoughts of Conspiracy ...

Now, it might be claimed that the “science” is valid, since it can be verified that metal shielding can and does stop or limit the transmission of radiation. Well, yes, but then anything can be verified if you believe strongly enough and you are willing to manipulate the data to prove your point. However, the premise of the argument is not based on science, but fear, and the scientific data is used only to corroborate what is already believed to be true. The people who wear tin-foil hats are afraid of what might happen to them and, as a consequence, are not able to experience life as it is meant to be lived–freely and courageously, no matter the circumstances.

Ditto with the face masks. There is no use in arguing with someone about the “science” or effectiveness of covering one’s face. There is simply an irrational fear which people seek to overcome by resorting to the use of unreasonable claims. If it is true that a cloth handkerchief wrapped around one’s head will add some measure of defense against the Corona Monster, then it is also true that tin foil wrapped around one’s head will shield from the dangerous effects of radiation.

Neither of these have any real or substantial grounding in scientific fact. Both are heavily influenced by fear. Both ought to be discarded as public policy and seen for what they really are.

The Tower of Babel: American Version

Some observations concerning past events, the recent election, and America’s future.

Disclaimer: I did not vote in 2020, which continues my tradition of not voting for the last 16 years. Further, I support no political party and have exactly no confidence or faith that government can solve anything at all and do it correctly. It only gets worse. Instead, as the old, old hymn goes:

“My hope is built on nothing less
Than Jesus Christ, my righteousness;
I dare not trust the sweetest frame,
But wholly lean on Jesus’ name.”

“On Christ, the solid Rock, I stand;
All other ground is sinking sand,
 All other ground is sinking sand.”

For those who are willing to see it, America is sinking fast.

_______________________________________________

“My fellow Americans – I am honored and humbled by the trust the American people have placed in me and in Vice President-elect Harris. In the face of unprecedented obstacles, a record number of Americans voted. Proving once again, that democracy beats deep in the heart of America. With the campaign over, it’s time to put the anger and the harsh rhetoric behind us and come together as a nation. It’s time for America to unite. And to heal. We are the United States of America. And there’s nothing we can’t do, if we do it together.”

This is from a statement made by Joe Biden, the presumptive winner of the American presidential election. Notice the last line. Notice the assertion that unity of purpose in anything means success at whatever we attempt. Compare this attitude with that of the story of a civilization long lost in the dust of antiquity and mythology–the Tower of Babel, found in Genesis 10. Verse 6 is the link between then and now.

“And the LORD said, “Indeed the people are one and they all have one language, and this is what they begin to do; now nothing that they propose to do will be withheld from them.”

Almost literally word for word. “There’s nothing we can’t do.” “There’s nothing they won’t be able to do.”

Now, some will argue that the Babel story is simply an attempt to explain how languages came to be differentiated, which may be true. That is not my point. Does this “myth” have any meaning at all as a lesson in societal behavior. I find the similarities a little too close for comfort, but then, I’m quite skeptical about the ability of imperfect Man to build anything of permanence–whether physical, cultural, or spiritual.

Joe Biden’s statement sounds like this: “We can build a secure future for ourselves from which we cannot be dislodged. Let’s unite.” The Babel story sounds like this: “We can build a secure future for ourselves from which we cannot be dislodged. We are united.” From the historical narrative, it is plain that the Tower of Babel resulted in discord, division, and destruction of a culture. From the present-day perspective, our own society is mired in discord, division, and destruction. Is there any good reason for believing that we will somehow pull off a miracle and avoid being scattered like so much chaff before a windstorm?

If you have faith in the ability of Man and State to build a “more perfect union”, then, yes, you should be supporting the Biden/Harris ticket. It is certain they are going to make the effort. And everyone will participate, whether they want to or not. Whether this will succeed or not is debatable. I’m betting on the Lord’s ability to destroy Man’s creation faster and more thoroughly than it can be built.

Speaking of unity, in an earlier statement Biden said that, if elected President, he would write an Executive Order mandating a face mask for everyone nationwide. If that were to happen, then he can say that we’re all doing it together. Right! One of the hallmarks of socialism is that everyone is guaranteed equality. Under this protocol, everyone will be equally miserable in their faceless, anonymous, blank, masked world. How he would enforce such an order is another matter entirely.

We really can do anything at all, as long as we are all united. We can and will beat the Corona Monster, if we all cover our faces in a fearful, compliant manner. As long as we act in unison, we’re guaranteed the victory over this deadly pestilence which has wreaked such havoc, damage, and death on humanity to the tune of a 99.98% recovery rate of those who contract it. If we weed out those who resist and refuse to go along, then success is inevitable. We really can build a Garden of Eden–our Utopia.

I’ll wait for history to record what happens.

Marijuana: Permission Granted. Or Not!

In just a few days, Montanans will go to the polls and vote their preferences on office holders and issues. One of these issues is whether marijuana should be legalized for general use among the public. This question will be settled democratically, once and for all, on Nov. 3 when a majority of voters choose to impose their viewpoint on the opposing minority. Settled, that is, until the losing minority can gin up enough of whatever it takes to bring the issue into contention again.

There are usually only two sides promoted as pertains to this question and, of course, there are all the shades of gray between these two extremes.

1. People have a “right” to use marijuana no matter what anyone else says, thinks, or believes. The State must grant the privilege of exercising that right, making it completely legal to do so for any consenting adult.  

2.  Marijuana use should not be legalized, condoned, or allowed under any circumstances. It is a “gateway” drug, the use of which leads to more dangerous drugs and, ultimately, the degradation of society.

In the case of the first, the State is seen as an indulgent parent, granting favors to its subordinate children, who are always asking for more and always shielding them from the consequences of their actions.

In the case of the second, the State is seen as a strict parent, refusing its subordinate children the opportunity to decide for themselves, never allowing them to make mistakes out of a sense of overbearing “paternalism” and breeding rebellion among those thwarted.

That is about all there is to it. Summed up, it can be expressed in one of two ways: “I will do as I please!” or “You will do as you’re told!” Stubborn, rebellious, immature selfishness vs. tyrannical, hide-bound, rules-reliant selfishness.  A neat, tidy, us vs. them standoff.

But there are questions which cry out for answers.

Why should anyone of a legally defined adult age have to gain permission from the Law in order to ingest, inhale, or inject any foreign substance into his or her own body? Why should anyone have the authority or power under the Law to order and control the actions of anyone else according to his or her own opinions? Should anyone be able to act in any way which might be “beneficial” to them privately, but detrimental to the society around them? Are there or should there be limits to personal behavior?

I will not take part in the ‘either-or’ proposition. Neither side will get my vote. I will not “grant permission” to my neighbor because it is not mine to give. Neither will I “refuse permission” because I do not hold that authority over him. Instead, I will allow him to live his life freely, as he sees fit, and be there to help him if and when he needs it. Exactly the way I want him to treat me—as a responsible, mature, person able to make my own decisions.

Stevie Ray Vaughan performing on Austin City Limits (1989)

Otherwise, as Stevie Ray Vaughn put it in his hit song, Crossfire,

            “Whatever happened to the Golden Rule? We got stranded, caught in the crossfire.”

Yes, caught in the crossfire. Perhaps we should approach this from a new direction—that of liberty, freedom, and love for humanity instead of power, popularity, and love of money?

Off the Rails: The Covid Aberration

As far as I’m concerned, there is only one thing to call the ongoing saga (circus?) of the corona virus. Well, actually two, because I’ve been calling it the Corona Monster for some time. Lately, though, I’ve started labeling it the Covid Aberration, which sounds much more professional and scientific, in addition to which really is quite accurate, considering how aberration is defined.

1. The act of departing from the right, normal, or usual course.

2. The act of deviating from the ordinary, usual, or normal type.

3. Deviation from truth or moral rectitude.

4. Mental irregularity or disorder, especially of a minor or temporary nature; lapse from a sound mental state.

Who can deny that the last nine months have been abnormal and unusual? Who can claim that the medical establishment has never deviated from the truth, always giving us the plain facts without attempting to twist and obfuscate them to achieve an agenda? Who can say that politicians, bureaucrats, and health “officials” have always taken the right course in destroying the livelihoods of so many people who trusted them? Who can assert that large numbers of good people have not been deluded into believing that wearing a scrap of cloth over one’s face will protect them or that standing six feet apart is effective? Or even that shaking hands is tantamount to a death sentence?

Abnormal? Unusual? Deviant? Insane? Yes, all of these, and more. In short, aberrant. Call it what it is: The Covid Aberration.

“Men, it has been well said, think in herds; it will be seen that they go mad in herds, while they only recover their senses slowly, one by one.” ~ Charles Mackay

“Insanity in individuals is something rare – but in groups, parties, nations and epochs, it is the rule.” ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

We have seen the whole world go mad as one, in a herd-like manner, within the space of a few months. The question which remains to be answered is how long it will take to recover its senses, slowly, one person at a time. What will it take before people realize the truth about the whole thing, that as a world-wide society, we have willingly plunged into something very strange indeed?

Aberrations, though, are always temporary. They never become permanent. As such, this one will pass as well and those who manage to make it through to the end will look back wondering how so many people were so easily duped. Of course, this assurance doesn’t make it any easier to bear right now nor does it mean that there will not be dark days ahead. However, those who recognize the truth can move forward confidently, knowing that sooner or later we will emerge into the full light of day and put this mental, emotional, and spiritual derangement behind us.

When that will happen is anybody’s guess.