Sunday, September 29, 2013

What Was Cruz Doing?

I realize I'm not the most politically astute in this country, but I really did read the articles and reports and I am still scratching my head!  As an internet journalist, I do my best to stay abreast of current events, and for whatever reason, Washington politicians seem to love to orchestrate current events.  This so called rally of a "lone Texas legislator" really has me baffled, and his loyal followers are still just singing his praises.

From everything I read, it fell far short of a filibuster.  The vote gives no impression that any mind was changed but his own, and his 21 hours was not even good "sock puppet theatre."  I read that he read "Green Eggs & Ham" just to fill in time.  For no more work days than Congress even schedules, these all night comedies are outlandish, and not  funny.  When this happened last year, I was appalled.  I don't like being threatened by my government, and when they finally agreed on whatever they did, then it was every month another threat of shut down.  Enough already!  We know we're broke, and we know it's not going to get fixed!

I think we should all be tired of being constantly threatened by our own government in one way or another.  I know I am.  I'm tired of being spied on.  I don't want government health care, and I don't want to give up the Bill of Rights to a bunch of politicians who don't know straight up from sic'em about actually living a real life in this country.  I'm tired of reading about outlandish brutality, and I'm really sick and tired of reading about every time the government threatens shut down, the threats of no money lands squarely on the back of soldiers, veterans, and the government employees.  I never read about Washington politicians not receiving their checks in event of a shut down.  Besides, when did this shut down business become an option for our elected officials?

I've read the fans comments.  Mr. Cruz has been called a great patriot.  The tea party is proud.  He's identified the RINOs!  I've read comments from both sides, and I've read reports from both biases, and I still can't figure out what he did.  The vote reported was unanimous, I reiterate, unanimous:  100-0.  Anytime both sides of the aisle are 100% in agreement, I know "we the people" have not been represented in whatever is on it's way to becoming law.  So, Mr. Cruz, was this a feeble attempt to really make a difference, and you just don't know what you're doing?  or Was this some sort of political grandstanding to garner support for an election?  

And who knoweth whether he shall be a wise man or a fool? yet shall he have rule over all my labour wherein I have laboured, and wherein I have showed myself wise under the sun. This is also vanity.  Ecclesiastes of Holy Scripture

Monday, September 16, 2013

Never Waste Your Pain

This title was the title of Rick Warren's sermon in his dramatic return to the pulpit of Saddleback Church.  My heart is grieved for the Warren family.  It is horribly painful to bury a child, and I cannot imagine the added pain to lose one to suicide.  

Rick Warren is a powerful man, though; with clout in two high profile sections of our society.   He has obviously been politically influential to have hosted both Presidential candidates in 2008.  He gave the inaugural invocation for President Obama.  Rick Warren 's picture has appeared on the front of Time magazine, which I used on the front cover of my book, entitled, "Can We All Be Wrong?"
Saddleback Church, where he pastors, averages 20,000 in attendance and is listed in the ten largest churches in the country, so he's got some religious influence as well.  His book, "The Purpose Driven Life," was a top seller for some time, appealing to many of all walks of life.
The final sentence of an article I read about him, made me think of a quote by Rahm Emanuel, which then really got me thinking.  
> > This weekend Warren was back at Saddleback, preaching a sermon titled, "Never Waste Your Pain." < <
The family has been rather quiet these past five months, according to the article, but now there is an interview coming up the night after his official return to the pulpit.  I see a real potential, even probability that this tragic event will be turned into a mental health / gun control / internet security issue.   The timing for the article and the interview is interesting in that October is National Cyber Security Awareness month.

Here is another quote from the article at CNN.
> > After what the family called a lifelong struggle with mental illness, Matthew Warren, 27, took his life in April.“In spite of America’s best doctors, meds, counselors, and prayers for healing, the torture of mental illness never subsided,” Warren wrote to staffers at Saddleback Church, his megachurch in Orange County, California. < <
This was a Twitter post attributed to Rick Warren, included in the article.
Someone on the internet sold Matthew an unregistered gun.I pray he seeks God's forgiveness. I forgive him. 6:15
I have an issue with this Twitter comment. We have no way of knowing if this individual had any idea that the young man was suicidal. Also, a sale on the internet may or may not have been an illegal act, since not all guns have required registration, in the past . . .  

I see all sorts of things advertised for sale on the internet . . . This tragedy could be instrumental in making sure there are no gun sales on the internet, as well as more registration laws. We also need to keep in mind that a gun ordered online would have taken either time or a conscious act to obtain it. The information in the tweet indicates that this suicide was not an impulsive act, but rather a calculated plan.

I am sorry for Rick Warren and his wife. I'm sorry for their other two children. I'm sorry his son, Matthew, struggled his whole life, and I'm sorry that Matthew's mental illness was fatal. I do have the foreboding thought that someone will use this opportunity to further our loss of freedom and privacy while being reminded that this pain will not be wasted.

He that is first in his own cause seemeth just . . . a Proverb of Holy Scripture

Sunday, September 15, 2013

The Digital Fahrenheit 451

As social media and the blogosphere gain writers and readers daily, I can't help but wonder, what happens when the internet is either cast aside for newer technology or simply castigated.  As a writer, I use the internet daily.  I truly enjoy being an internet journalist and blogger, but there is something that I simply cannot wrap my mind around.  When I hit send or enter or publish, what I've written is "out there," never to be retrieved, and with that foreboding feeling of "forever" is also the reality that the written word is now, fleeting as well.

I have an ongoing argument with myself.  I keep telling myself I should print Contemplation of Preponderance, just to have the record in the event of whatever; but I then tell myself, it's serving it's purpose as is. My thoughts and words are not necessarily of world importance, but many of my blog topics do address world events and digital history is vulnerable to revision.  I'm not an historian by any means, but I do think a great deal about the revision that has already transpired.  Now that encyclopedias and periodicals are becoming digital, and libraries are losing funding, will the veracity of history remain intact?  In less than 70 years of written history, the holocaust has been questioned, even denied.  

I received quite a response on the internet over a year ago, for raising the question or the possibility that while so many trust "snopes," the day could come that snopes could be hacked.  I'm already amazed at the people who swear by Google, until I search their issue on Google, then I need more information . . .   It seems digital information is more prone to perspective and interpretation as to it's validity.

The internet is a very useful tool at this time, but it may not be the best data base for recorded history.  I couldn't work from home without it, but digital information is easily cut and pasted or photoshopped, and just because something goes viral doesn't make it truth.  When I first got a word processor, I described it as a typewriter and file cabinet in one.  Later, when coming to the internet, I added to my typewriter and file cabinet, a communication device, but the reality is, once I added the communication capability, the file cabinet portion was changed.  I was no longer the only one with access, and just because it's "my blog" or "my domain" things can happen.  There need be no nefarious intent at all, technology is no more fool proof than humans.  

When first organizing the Goshen Gazette, I wanted all contributors to have their own blog address, so their work remained their property.  It was only a matter of a couple of weeks before we were frantically messaging behind the scenes that certain blog sites wouldn't open.  There's nothing more frustrating than a power surge or outage when a document hasn't yet been "saved."

I realized how very important a record of the truth is, when my parents began discussing their "Plans of Departure from this World" as in, what did I want from their house?  Well, they are still in good health, or so they tell me, and I'm quite sure I won't have a clue about their financial decisions until they have departed this sod, but when asked the question, I told them, "I wanted the encyclopedias, and I qualified it with.  Now, if kids, grandkids, nieces, nephews, etc. want them, I won't argue, I simply want a record of history maintained in print."  I love my Bible program on the computer.  That program is so handy for my work on line, but my devotion time is with my Bible in print.  

With digital news and e-books, the printed word is the most permanent thing we have in this temporal world. 

 The preacher sought to find out acceptable words: and that which was written was upright, even words of truth.  Ecclesiastes of Holy Scripture  

Sunday, September 08, 2013

The Beginning of Bypassing the State

I've been waiting for it, for some time to move beyond the Department of Conservation.  So many of our citizens have lost touch with nature that the powers of the DoC didn't really affect them on a personal level, but Arizona is a different story.

I've taken stark notice of the state of Arizona since the shooting of Gabrielle Giffords, and realizing the impact that state is having on a number of national concerns, while the state remains rather boisterously impotent.

Arizona was the last state in the union for years and years.  Came in in 1912.  The state has had two women governors back to back, actually four of the last five governors have been women.  Arizona has a real issue that apparently eludes New Mexico and California in immigration traffic.  Arizona also has a maverick Sheriff that spends a great deal of his time gaining national acclaim while his county is kidnap central for young teen age girls.

clearly Janet Napolitano and Jan Brewer do not share political leanings, at least openly, but there has been a common thread of a sheriff who loves the spotlight in the administration of both of these women.  Sheriff Joe Arpaio is sheriff of Maricopa County which includes the city of Phoenix.  This is the sheriff who is famous for his pink jail uniforms, tents, chain gang work force, reducing the prison budget by millions, and has been elected to this office five times.  He is also famous for his illegal immigration enforcement, alleged racial profiling, and the investigation to the legitimacy of our President's birth certificate.

Sheriff Joe is a busy man.  His jail has housed the infamous Jodi Arias, as well as a Pastor having a family Bible study.  What I've noticed is, as with so many things in America, the Arizona issues are all quite divisive and conveniently located right there in one state.  Granted, everything isn't all in Maricopa County, but Sheriff Joe is quite the animated lighting rod.  It has now been determined that he requires federal oversight and a Federal District Judge has ordered a monitor for this outspoken sheriff.

It's as though, Arizona's governor has simply become a figure head, and bypassed, while the muscle of the federal power is flexed in this state over one of the largest counties, and certainly the most notorious "badge" of the west.  Granted, this move also brings division in those watching.  Many applaud the oversight that leaves both a republican governor and an authoritative sheriff in submission to the federal government, while others claim conservative persecution.  We can't set aside the foundation of federal involvement over the horrific tragedy that took place in Tucson.  This event will affect gun control in all fifty states.

Sadly, this journalist sees yet another opportunity to keep the people divided while creating the submissive sustainable urban dwellings that is being promoted federally.  This is one step closer to a federal rule of law, while state power and economic autonomy continues to decline.  Ultimately the power of a state or county can, potentially in the foreseeable future, be regulated by Congress.

In rebellion, a land has many rulers . . . a Proverb of Holy Scripture

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