Friday, December 20, 2013

Revelations from the Duck Commander controversy

Disclaimer: I am a fan of the Duck Dynasty TV program. I look forward to each new episode and have watched many of the shows several times. Best show on TV, Jack.

Phil Robertson, the Duck Commander, is in the center of a controversy because of some statements he made about sin, in an interview with GQ magazine. I am not surprised by the reaction. The collision of free speech, religious liberty, and tolerance can be messy. Not to mention, anything to do with the "s" word, sin, in our contemporary society.

Much is being written and said about this from both sides of the argument. I wish to approach this from a slightly different angle.

When Jesus walked the earth, he openly criticized one group of people, the Pharisee's. He accused them of being white-washed sepulchers, full of dead men's bones. Cup's that were clean on the outside, but dirty on the inside. The problem with the Pharisee's was, in a word, hypocrisy. They looked down on others for being sinners, but did not recognize that they were sinners as well.

Now to the 21st century. The Phil Robertson controversy reveals that we have a new breed of Pharisee. Sure, the old Pharisee still exists. Religious people who look down on others without recognizing their own sin. But, I think we now have a new type of Pharisee, sort of a reverse Pharisee. The new Pharisee is not religious in the conventional way, although their belief system is at the root of the problem. The new Pharisee is definitely a hypocrite, though. They preach tolerance, but are very intolerant of all who disagree with them. They preach freedom of expression, but want to restrict the expression of others. They preach the separation of church and state, but they want the state to control what the church says and does in the public arena.

The new Pharisee is the same as the old Pharisee. They are powerful people. They can affect the lives of others by their pronouncements. They stand on the street corner and look like model citizens, but inside, they are full of hate and bigotry toward anyone who would dare to have an opposing viewpoint. I heard someone on TV say, "Mr. Robertson can believe anything he wants to, he should just keep his mouth shut about it". I am sure the old Pharisee's felt the same way about Jesus. I just hope Phil Robertson does not have to pay the same price. (To those who may not know, Jesus paid the price of his own blood.) My guess is, he (Phil) will be just fine, however this current situation turns out. If nothing else, he will just go hunting. Oh, that's right, that is what he does anyway. "Love God, love your neighbor, hunt ducks".

P.S. - In this nativity season, I must confess my own Pharisee-ism. Please forgive me, a sinner. Lord have mercy.

Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Profit Motive

Much is being said about the profit motive these days. Most of it is negative. But is the profit motive really a bad thing?

First of all, what is profit? One makes a profit when income exceeds expenses. To put it another way, a profit is made when the amount of money received is greater than the amount spent. So, is wanting to have more money coming in than going out, an evil?

I think not. Now, let me be clear (as the President likes to say). Many people in the name of profit, have done some terrible things. But, I suggest that the profit motive is not to blame. What is to blame is the heart of man. But I digress.

Think of it this way. On a personal level, every household wants to have more money coming in than going out. If not, it won't be long until they will be in serious financial trouble. Therefore, everyone reading this has or should have, a profit motive.

But what about non-profit organizations, you might be asking. Aren't they better than those evil corporations, seeking profits above all else?

Let me fill you in on a dirty little secret. Every organization, even non or not for profits', wants to have a profit, they just call it by another name. That is right. All organizations want to have more money coming in than going out. Well you say, a non profit spends all of the money it receives. Does it now? OK, that is it's objective, but reality is different. Most well run organizations will put some funds aside for future use. It may be a rainy day fund or savings for a building project, but it is created by profits just the same.

But non-profits care about something other than the bottom line, you say. Maybe so. But if no attention is paid to the bottom line and expenses exceed income, then at some point, the organization will no longer exist.

So, the next time you listen to someone talking down profits, remember, without profits, even the best of us, will be in financial ruin.

Repeat after me, "profit is my friend".

I am in no way excusing bad behavior by some. It is just that we need to have some perspective. Common sense is needed, but unfortunately, not so common.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Stuck in the middle

Greed to the left of me, envy to the right. Here I am, stuck in the middle.

My 2 cents on Occupy Wall Street (OWS) or any of the other Occupy's:

Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbor's.  Exodus 20:17

That about says it all.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Question of the day to the OWS crowd

The Question of the Day: What is the difference between North and South Korea?

These people have no clue.

Friday, October 08, 2010

Telling it like it is

I am sure the pro-abortion crowd is going nuts over this. But hey, it tells it like it is.

Please choose life.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Why is it .........? Vol. 2

Why is it that otherwise good hearted and well meaning people see nothing wrong with the government taking money from one group of people in order to give it to another group?

Why is it that we keep electing politicians who run on improving education for our children, we spend lots of money, then in the next election cycle, the same politicians run on fixing the education system which has gotten worse since the last election?

Why is it some want to turn over our health care system to the same politicians mentioned above?

Just asking.

Friday, September 03, 2010

Why is it .......?

Why is it, when those on the political left criticize the right, it is free speech, but when the right criticizes the left, it is hate speech?

Why is it, when the left holds to a certain mind-set, they are open-minded, but when the right holds to a certain mind-set, they are closed-minded?

Why is it, when those who preach religious tolerance actually see it in action, they are sceptical and fearful of it?

Why is it, that I can see the speck in someone else's eye, but cannot see the log in my own eye?

Just asking.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

I have a few questions

The Health Care Bill (HCB) has been signed in to law. I have heard some of my friends and family say things like, "Well, at least they are doing something", "At least they are moving in the right direction", "finally, Congress has done something". Well, I have a few questions:

1. If the HCB is so good, why did the Congressional leaders and the President have to coerce and/or bribe members of their own party to get the bill passed?

2. Why are most of the benefits delayed until 2014? Some are delayed until 2018.

3. Why is the President and some members of Congress and their staff's exempt?

4. Now that the Federal government can force us all to purchase something, what will they try to force us to buy next? A GM car?

5. What ever happened to the land of the free? I don't think Francis Scott Key meant the land of free health care (which isn't really free).

6. Why are those who usually love to refer to the separation of church and state, the same people who quote Jesus' statements about helping the needy to back up their support of the HCB?

7. Why is it considered theft if my neighbor, who needs health care, comes to me and demands I pay for it at the point of a gun, but when the IRS comes to my door to demand the same thing, it is to fulfill someone's idea of compassion?

8. Why am I considered to be a racist, if I disagree with the policies of the first black President? I'm sorry, the second black President. Bill Clinton was the first.

9. Why are Student Loans part of the HCB? So, some of the cost of this bill is being put on the backs of students paying off their student loans.

10. Why do we trust the CBO to accurately predict the future cost of the HCB? They certainly do not have a very good track record of predicting the cost of other bills. Take Medicare for example. The actual costs are about 10 times what was estimated.

11. Did anyone who voted on the HCB actually read the bill? This is the really scary part for me. How can anyone vote for a bill if they don't even know what is in it?

12. Why do we trust the same people who run the Post Office and Amtrak to run our health care system? The HCB gives new definition to "all aboard".

13. Why can't the supporters of the HCB be generous with their own money and keep their mits off of my wallet? There should be a line on the Federal Tax Return, "Do you want to contribute to the health care costs of others?" "If so, how much?" Then they can pay more in taxes and leave the rest of us alone.

14. Why must the Vice President drop the f*** bomb in public?

15. How did they come up with the age of 26 for children to be covered on their parent's insurance? Why not, 27, or 37, or 57? Why put any age limit on it? I want my mommy to pay for my insurance. If I had a 26 year old child still living at my house, they would need health insurance :)

I am sure there will be more questions to follow.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Yes, I see that hand.

For all of the wonderful things life in the Internet age provides us, there are some notable drawbacks. One of them is that email and popular social media tools like Twitter and Facebook provide powerful launching pads for unchecked rumors and popular myths. Often these rumors and myths are proven false by websites like and, but not this time.

The Internet has been abuzz with rumors that if you drive down Interstate 35 near the town of Wyoming, Minnesota, you'll see a billboard bearing the image of a smiling George W. Bush accompanied by the question "Miss me yet?" The online rumors were confirmed by this image

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Bears repeating

The following is a re-posting of a post I made in March 2009. Considering the continued Health Care debate and other economic issues, I feel it bears repeating.

Should we look to kings and princes to put right the inequalities between rich and poor? Should we require soldiers to come and seize the rich person's gold and distribute it among his destitute neighbors? Should we beg the emperor to impose a tax on the rich so great that it reduces them to the level of the poor and then to share the proceeds of that tax among everyone? Equality imposed by force would achieve nothing, and do much harm. Those who combined both cruel hearts and sharp minds would soon find ways of making themselves rich again. Worse still, the rich whose gold was taken away would feel bitter and resentful; while the poor who received the gold from the hands of soldiers would feel no gratitude, because no generosity would have prompted the gift. Far from bringing moral benefit to society, it would actually do moral harm. Material justice cannot be accomplished by compulsion, a change of heart will not follow. The only way to achieve true justice is to change people's hearts first -- and then they will joyfully share their wealth. - St. John Chysostom

These words were attributed to St. John Chrysostom in the book "On Living Simply" compiled by Robert Van de Weyer. Unfortunately, Mr. Van de Weyer did not provide the citation and I have not been able to find exactly where this quote came from. Nevertheless, whether St. John Chysostom actually said these words or not, I find them to be very powerful. If I didn't know better, I would say he must have been reading today's newspapers. Wealth redistribution is the theme of the day. I think we should heed his words, "Far from bringing moral benefit, it would actually do moral harm." Stealing is stealing, no matter who does it, a person or the state.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Economic Reform for Haiti

Real Economic Reform for a Hurting Haiti

Mises Daily: Monday, January 18, 2010 by

What the people of Haiti need are the individual liberty and secure property rights in an open, free market that can draw upon the creative potentials of the people themselves. No bureaucrats or politicians in either Washington, DC, or in the Haitian capital of Port-au-Prince possess a fraction of the knowledge about what needs to be done — how, where or when, and for whom — that is known by the 10 million Haitian people, themselves.

Yes, they can use all the assistance that any and all men of good will may choose to provide right now, but the recovery that can begin "tomorrow" can only come about by releasing the creative energy and abilities of the Haitian people. And that means that their government and other governments need to get out of the way and not make a market-based recovery process more difficult than it has to be.

Food for thought. Freedom works everytime it is tried.

Monday, December 21, 2009


Payoffs for states get Harry Reid to 60 votes

By CHRIS FRATES 12/19/09 7:56 PM EST Politico

Ben Nelson’s “Cornhusker Kickback,” as the GOP is calling it, got all the attention Saturday, but other senators lined up for deals as Majority Leader Harry Reid corralled the last few votes for a health reform package.

Nelson’s might be the most blatant – a deal carved out for a single state, a permanent exemption from the state share of Medicaid expansion for Nebraska, meaning federal taxpayers have to kick in an additional $45 million in the first decade.

I just have one word for this; DISGUSTING.

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Death Penalty for Gays in Uganda

Death penalty for gays? Uganda debates proposal

By KATHARINE HOURELD and GODFREY OLUKYA (AP) – KAMPALA, Uganda — Proposed legislation would impose the death penalty for some gay Ugandans, and their family and friends could face up to seven years in jail if they fail to report them to authorities. Even landlords could be imprisoned for renting to homosexuals.

Gay rights activists say the bill, which has prompted growing international opposition, promotes hatred and could set back efforts to combat HIV/AIDS. They believe the bill is part of a continent wide backlash because Africa's gay community is becoming more vocal.

I have often wondered why the peace loving Muslim community does not stand up in opposition to the terrorist's actions. Perhaps they do, but we do not hear about it.

In that same light, I stand in opposition to this proposal in Uganda. I will be the first to state my view that homosexuality or any sexual relations outside of marriage is sin. But I also believe that this bill goes way overboard in reaction to the issue. I reserve the death penalty for those who take another persons life. This proposal, in a word, is wrong and I pray will not pass.

Monday, December 07, 2009

Change we can believe in?

Is this the change we can believe in?

But Washington is a city that likes its traditions, and Ms. Rogers has raised a few eyebrows by trying to bend them. When former social secretaries gave a luncheon to welcome Ms. Rogers earlier this year, one participant said, she surprised them by suggesting the Obamas were planning a “non-religious Christmas” — hardly a surprising idea for an administration making a special effort to reach out to other faiths.

The lunch conversation inevitably turned to whether the White House would display its crèche, customarily placed in a prominent spot in the East Room. Ms. Rogers, this participant said, replied that the Obamas did not intend to put the manger scene on display — a remark that drew an audible gasp from the tight-knit social secretary sisterhood. (A White House official confirmed that there had been internal discussions about making Christmas more inclusive and whether to display the crèche.)

Yet in the end, tradition won out; the executive mansion is now decorated for the Christmas holiday, and the crèche is in its usual East Room spot.

The White House wanted to make Christmas more inclusive by excluding that which represents the story of the birth of Christ, the reason for the season, as they say. More inclusive by excluding Jesus, hmmm, I don't get it. I am glad tradition, reason and common sense won out.

Hope and change. I am hoping for a change in 2012, if we last as a nation until then.