“Behold, you desire truth in the inward being” : Allegri

Psalm 51, a Psalm of penitence

“Have mercy upon me, O God “

“…blot out my transgressions.”

“Renew a right spirit in me”

“Behold, you desire truth in the inward being”

 

 

Here, background involving a pope and Mozart and a performance of Miserere Mei Deus – Gregorio Allegri (1630):

A Brave New World or Evil Will Make One Lose Their Head

  Macbeth

“Fair is foul and foul is fair

Hover through the fog and filthy air.”

 

 

If like me you are a follower of The Way then I don’t have to tell you that we live in an age of ever encroaching evil. The effects:  man’s inhumanity to man is shown daily on the nightly news along with the moral relativism which justifies it all. We now “Hover through the fog and filthy air.”

 In the U.S. we now are governed and adjudicated by those who want to “fundamentally transform” the world around them. For these morally adrift flotsam and jetsam of embattled truth, the ends justify the means. For them, right or wrong considerations are the millstones which keep them from reaching the distant shores of their island utopias called ‘Freedom’ and ‘Rights’.

 Our world in almost every aspect has been turned upside down by moral relativism. One prime example: criminals (and illegal aliens this very day, too) are now considered the victims by many judges.

 Unconstrained judges will often base their final decisions on the fatuous reasoning of rationalism’s data merchants, the social scientists ~ ‘scientists’ who paint family background and poverty scenarios with a blind eye to the true victim. The resultant formulation: a sliding scale of ad hoc “social justice” created with a calculus of personal ambition by a judge who is being watched by the attention-seeking liberal media, the ‘acclaimed’ ‘social’ ‘scientists’ and his/her cocktail party sycophants.

 Personal responsibility for one’s behavior has been thrown out the window. Such a ‘weight’ would incur too much shame and guilt on the part of the perpetrators of evil. Psychologists, social workers and their ilk want to avoid shame and guilt. And if Rousseau were here today he would say that institutions and authorities are the problem, that man is inherently good. You know better.

 Willfully the social do-gooders replace personal responsibility and consequences with an “I’m OK Your Ok” “fog and filthy air” therapy. Mind altering anxiety killing pills are prescribed to deal with guilt. Heaven forbid that a person encounter and understand the consequences of their actions.

 Shakespeare’s The Tragedy of Macbeth is an excellent example of the very human tragedy that is the result of good people crossing a line to make evil choices. And, after having read several of Shakespeare’s plays, it would seem that Shakespeare knew more about humanity than any ‘social scientist’ who has ever published. The Bible being unquestionably the authority, The Book, about mankind.

 Another writer who understood man’s capacity for evil was Alexander Solzhenitsyn. A Russian novelist, historian, dissident and documentarian Solzhenitsyn had first-hand knowledge of evil as he and others experienced it under the murderous tyrant Stalin. From under the clouds of evil, as well as introspectively, Solzhenitsyn observed:

 “The battle line of good and evil runs through the heart of every man.”

 Moral relativism, a synthesis of good and evil, makes the line dividing good and evil murky. And, in these days of Progressivism’s Pontius Pilate-like questioning, “What is truth?” it has become increasingly difficult to see the delineation between good and evil. The “fog and filthy air” of moral relativism must be seen for what it is ~ the admixture of good and evil.

 

The opening quote, spoken in unison by three witches, is from the opening of Shakespeare’s play The Tragedy of Macbeth, Act One, Scene 1.

 The foreboding first scene takes place on the heather moors of Scotland under a stage setting of “Thunder and lightening.” The imagery throughout the play is of night, of darkness, of man’s dark nature, of blood, of distortion. In other words, the play brings to ‘light’ the evil overcast in men’s souls.

 Macbeth, a Scottish General and the thane (a noble) of the village of Glamis in Scotland, is the main character.

 In the play’s opening scene Macbeth is the subject of a plot by three witches. He is to be encountered by them in an open field after he has completed a battle. Their reason: the witches want to give Macbeth their ‘prophecies’ right after his victory while the won battle is fresh in his mind and his pride is stoked.

 At the end of the brief opening scene that the witch’s animal ‘spirit lords’ call to them and they fly away. Act One, Scene 1 ends portentously. Evil is in the air. The witches are the harbingers.

 The play is a tragedy about its eponymous main character facing the battle line within his heart. He begins as a noble and valiant warrior for Scotland. He starts out as good. He knows right from wrong; He fights for the good of all Scotland with all his might. But things begin to change after he returns victorious from a recent battle for Scotland. Macbeth walks into the aforementioned open field with his battlefield companion Banquo. The open field context could appear to them as a broad daylight moment and therefore any ‘truth’ would be clear to see. Yet it is not.

 For the three witches this is perfect timing to speak their prophecy. Its appeal goes directly Macbeth’s pride and to his grandiosity after having gained victory on another field.

 By telling Macbeth and his companion that they will rule Scotland each in their own way their imaginations begin to run wild. Reason also begins to plot as to how to ‘cross the line’ into royalty. The two men, warriors and servants of the King of Scotland, having just come from battle for their current regent Duncan now hear that they, too, will be regents. They begin to imagine that they are ‘meant’ to have what others have. So, they are told.

 After the witches relay their prophecies, Banquo counsels Macbeth (from the No fear translation, Act One, scene 3):

 If you trust what they say, you might be on your way to becoming king, as well as thane of Cawdor. But this whole thing is strange. The agents of evil often tell us part of the truth in order to lead us to our destruction. They earn our trust by telling us the truth about little things, but then they betray us when it will damage us the most

 What a perfect description of the enticement of moral relativism that leads us to ruin!

 To speed up the process of becoming a regent (no time line was given by the witches) Macbeth crosses a line and chooses a path of evil. The evil compounds quickly into greater evil when Macbeth sends a letter to Lady Macbeth.

 Lady Macbeth quickly embraces evil after reading the letter from her husband reciting the witch’s prophecies. (She, obviously, like Macbeth, doesn’t consider the source. Moral relativism has a penchant for this.). Lady Macbeth is stricken by the idea of being royalty and invites evil in, desiring to enable her husband to become king of Scotland. In doing so, Lady Macbeth becomes the very image of subjecting one’s self to evil in hopes of achieving ‘gain.’ She embraced the lie that evil brings right to your door step.

 Shortly afterward, when she hears that King Duncan will be coming to the Macbeth house, she plots his murder. Her words, again from No Fear Shakespeare, Act One scene 5:

 “So the messenger is short of breath, like a hoarse raven, as he announces Duncan’s entrance into my fortress, where he will die. Come, you spirits that assist murderous thoughts, make less like a woman and more like a man, and fill me from head to toe with deadly cruelty! Thicken my blood and clog my veins so I won’t feel remorse, so that no human compassion can stop my evil plan or prevent me from accomplishing it! Come to my female breasts and turn my mother’s milk into poisonous acid, you murdering demons, wherever you hide, invisible and waiting to do evil! Come, thick night and cover the world in the darkest smoke of hell, so that my sharp knife can’t see the wound it cuts open, and so heaven can’t peep through the darkness and cry, No! Stop!”

 Lady Macbeth, consumed by evil, question’s Macbeth’s manhood when he waffles considering what must take place for his ‘prophetic’ rule to occur.

 The play stages many of the elements and images of evil. Macbeth’s machismo, his masculinity is questioned by an evil embracing wife. There is guilt and paranoia, blood shed, ghosts, complicity in doing evil, delusional thinking leading to madness, remorse leading to suicide, darkness – all the time. Let it be known: evil hates the light of day.

 

At this juncture in the post I do not want to reveal and dissect the whole storyline or make this post longer than the play itself. I suggest reading the whole play in one sitting. It is a short, fast paced tragedy.

And, I suggest, if you haven’t read Shakespeare’s plays then do what I have done: read the plays from the very accessible, inexpensive series of books called No Fear Shakespeare. As the cover relates: “The Play Plus A Translation Anyone Can Understand”.

 

Can man remake himself with pills, through better institutions, by labeling himself a “deserving” person or by removing a psychopathic bent from the DSM?

 Can man rule in life by crossing the line in his heart from good over to evil? Progressivism, materialism and evil itself would suggest it is possible. Yet, in doing so one is radically and “Fundamentally Transformed” as are the lives of those around them.

 Was not Christ tempted by Satan in the same way as we are?

Satan took Jesus to a high pinnacle and showed him the world. Satan said to Christ, “You can have all of this if you give your allegiance to me.” In other words, “Cross the Line. Believe the lie.”

 There is no namby-pamby Jesus or cheap Unitarian grace where good is mixed with evil.

 When describing the Kingdom of Heaven to his disciples Jesus spoke in parables or similes of real life experiences they would have had. The passage below is from just such a discourse. It is from the Gospel according to Matthew 13: 44-53:

 “…Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a net that was thrown into the sea, and collected every type of fish. When it was full, the fishermen brought it to shore. They sat down and selected the good ones, which they put into a bucket; but they threw out the bad ones. That’s what it will be like at the close of an age. The angels will go off and separate the wicked from the righteous, and they will throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

“Have you understood this?” asked Jesus

“Yes, “they answered….”

You have a choice. Don’t let anyone conjure up excuses for you. You have a choice.

 

 ***

A short description of Shakespeare’s tragedy Macbeth from Wikipedia:

Macbeth is a play written by William Shakespeare. It is considered one of his darkest and most powerful tragedies. Set in Scotland, the play dramatizes the corroding psychological and political effects produced when its protagonist, the Scottish lord Macbeth, chooses evil as the way to fulfill his ambition for power.

 

****

Macbeth picture courtesy of :

http://www.thelowry.com/event/Macbeth-February2010

Sacred Sounds Amid the Hegemony of Noise

At a time of great crisis in our world we need more than ever to embrace the sacred. 

In the garden of prayer there are sacred sounds and there is holy silence.

As Spanish Mystic St. Teresa of Avila (March, 28, 1515 ~ October, 4, 1582) I come to the garden to meet with Him.

There I find water from the well and the fountain and the stream.  Water from above.

Saint Augustine:  When you sing you pray twice.

Here are some ideas, some choral music for your garden.

 Harry Christophers and The Sixteen present the music and backgrounds of composers James MacMillan, John Rutter and Sir John Tavener.

 

Tomás Luis Victoria (c.1548 – August 20, 1611)  ~ Spanish Counter Reformation Composer

 

There is No Gravy Train So Don’t Buy Tickets

Chciago 6-5-2013 027 - R1

Income inequality” is a false flag waved by socialist-redistributionists. They want your attention.  They want to sell you tickets for a ride on their gravy train. Don’t buy it!!

 Just as with the global warming hoax, income inequality as a universal ‘social justice’ mantra makes everyone in the world a victim.

 Politicians, ‘social agenda’ oligarchs and the international ‘do-gooders’ employ others to create fear mongering ~ much like the under-the-table paid/tenured insured/grant-awarded global warming ‘scientists’ who ‘cooked the books’ to create global warming.

 The above socialist’s cabal needs willing low information victims to join their crusade. With lemmings in tow a power grab is easy. Then, those in power can simply coerce money from wallets everywhere. Yet, in doing so, THEY create disproportionate income inequality.

 That is, in fact, the main purpose of a union these days: gather ‘victims’ into the fold so as to “fight the ‘man’.” “Hand us your money and we will do battle against the ‘injustice’ of the ‘rigged’ system.” The deceit is compounded with the likes of Elizabeth Warren the poster child of a Grapes-of-Wrath-animus-driven-low-information class warfare.

 In a growing and dynamic world economy income inequality can and should be expected. It means among other things that good things are happening. People are thriving, moving forward, the tide is rising. People everywhere on earth want to reap plentiful harvests and make profits. Is it “income inequality” to want to succeed rather than to fail? Is that “trickle down” economics or rising tide economics? Rising tide economics, of course! Except when government gets involved.

 In stagnant low information Paul Krugman type economies Stagnation and its bedfellows Socialism, Egalitarianism and Going-Nowhere-Nihilism dusts off Keynesian policies to try and stir up ‘things’. But again, these policies lead to disproportionate income inequality, e.g, our current U.S. economy and the gap between the very poor and the very rich; the middleclass suffers the most.

 There are several factors which contribute to “income inequality”. One is geo/political. Do you live in a resource rich area or a desert? Is there a rule of law where you live where contract laws are upheld?

 Another factor is how you use what you have. For example: squandering money on Solyndra type money laundering projects, on bailouts, on $44 BN POTUS trips, etc. or perhaps buying lottery tickets, dope and malt liquor instead of investing in your future. (FYI! Charity can only happen if you haven’t squandered your money.)

 More important than capital transfers is the transfer of knowledge.

 Warren Buffet, as an example, and other successful investors know the companies they invest in before diving in with their capital. Being knowledgeable and using that knowledge to grow your pie also allows one to be pie-charitable.

 Obama, on the other hand, doesn’t want knowledge transferred to you. He, without you knowing, will dive in with taxpayer money to gain political leverage for himself. ‘And, speaking of the importance of the transfer of knowledge, please don’t read the ACA law before you pass it!

 Obama, as will Elizabeth Warren if she is elected to be POTUS, offers to us, the proles (see Orwell’s 1984) trickle down economics: Obamacare/food stamps/minimum wages/tuition reimbursement/throw-them-a-bone-to-keep-them-distracted fiscal polices. But then you already knew this.

 What you need to know:  Capitalism is knowledge based. You must know what the other person’s needs are before you try to sell them something. You think about others first. Is this inequitable?

 If anything we have “knowledge inequality:” ~ a “love your neighbor as yourself” type inequality. That is something we can ask God for help with and he will answer our prayers.

There is no gravy train or free lunch. A focus on materialism feeds envy. Envy feeds materialism which feeds envy which feeds materialsm and so on.   There is no train, only an insane carousel that never stops.  You just have to get off. Don’t buy the tickets being offered.

There is no gravy train or free lunch. There is only faith, hope and charity ~ and knowldege:

 “The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom.
Though it cost all you have, get understanding.”

Proverbs 4:7

Identity Politics or American Like Me

Do black Americans want to be called African-Americans?

Why do black Americans hyphenate their identity?

What do conservative black Americans think? And, why do we talk about minorities? There are no minorities in America. There are only legal Americans.

After watching the video ask yourself why Barack Obama and Jesse Jackson and Eric Holder and Al Sharpton and the SPLC (the “Hate Watchers”) et al want to divide the country into black and white, rich and poor, big “G” Government versus John Doe and Christians? Why create class and race division and also animus towards Christians (remember “bitter clingers” comment?) among the people of the United States of America?

Take a look:

 

Al Sharpton’s Chicago Town Hall Erupts into Anti-Machine Revolt

Black Americans are rejecting Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton and the whole Obama-Liberal-Progresive-hate America agenda

Tea Party Playwright Between the Lines

Below is a video of David Mamet, a well-known contemporary playwright, discussing his conservatism.  There is much more detail of how he came to be a conservative as well as essays of his well thought out viewpoints to be found in his book, The Secret Knowledge. The book is quoted in the video. I highly recommend it to you.

I post this interview not for the sake of the underlying political ideology that I as a thinking Christian would certainly endorse.  Rather, I post this so that we as Kingdom Venturers will gain understanding of our culture. More importantly I post this to gain one Jew’s perspective; to understand a modern Jew who has left the liberal Jewish fold- the world of Howard Zinn, Noam Chomsky and the Hollywood decision makers-with a deliberateness based on definitive forethought.

If you are not familiar with Mamet’s work, then I would suggest starting with the movies Glengarry Glen Ross and Homicide. You will soon become aware of his fast-paced, tight, street-wise “Mamet Speak” dialogue.

Caveat:  I do not agree with Mamet’s description of the Torah, the Jewish Canon, as a bunch of good stories and fables about humanity.  Instead, the Torah, the Law and the Prophets and all of Scripture in a matter-of- fact way reminds us that God keeps his covenant promises. He keeps his word even though we like sheep have gone astray ~ perhaps it is the “tragic” humanity part that Mamet (and Thomas Sowell, an atheist) refers to. The Scriptures also, both Old and New Testament, point to the Kingdom of God coming to earth.

I do agree with Mamet that the Torah, the Scriptures, are inspired, but not in a “this-is-a-unique-and-special-compilation-of good drama” way.  Rather, the Scripture, the entire canon of 66 books bound in Old (39 books) and New Testament (27 books) are God breathed-inspired. In other words, God by the Holy Spirit spoke through men’s words, their personalities and their time and place in the world to give us his space/time understanding and to give us His ordinances leading to a life in relationship with him.  

 In the Scriptures we read that God breathed out creation~theistic evolution~ and I believe most likely through the Big Bang.  God goes on to breathe spirit and soul into mankind and then write His Law onto men’s hearts. We learn that God spoke his Ten Commandments to Moses and to his chosen people the Jews. God later ‘inspires’ prophets and evangelists alike to speak the good news of his son Jesus to all who would become one of God’s chosen through faith in his promises. God would send the world a surprise that would forever change our lives via his Son’s Kingdom on earth.

 The Kingdom of God on earth was inaugurated when Jesus Christ, very God, became incarnate and was born to Mary. 

 Though never mentioned in our church creeds, Jesus lived for over thirty years a holy, completely sinless life according to the Law and the Prophets ~ a Kingdom Life.  Then, as prophesied throughout the Old Testament, Jesus died on a cross as the perfect sacrificial Passover Lamb of God. 

The Messiah did this to ensure that His covenant promises would be upheld ~ that all the world would be saved, that Abraham’s descendants would be as many as the stars and that all who have faith in him would become Abraham’s children.  he did this so that his covenant with King David would be fulfilled~one of his descendants would be a King forever ~ Jesus would be crowned Lord of all.

Before his death Jesus said, “Destroy this temple and in three days I will raise it up again.”  As promised the resurrection of Jesus took place three days after his death. We are now walking around on resurrection ground.

Now to a most interesting interview:

Fourth of July at Cantigny Park – 2014

Cantigny Entrance 7-4-2014

 

Fourth of July at Cantigny Park has become an annual event for me. You will see why.

 Cantigny Park is the setting for Col. Robert R. McCormick Museum (the Colonel’s former residence), the First Division Museum of military history and 30 acres of gardens.

 Regarding Col. Robert R. McCormick’s military career, Wikipedia says:

Returning to the United States in 1915, he joined the Illinois National Guard on June 21, 1916, and, being an expert horseman, became a major in its 1st Cavalry Regiment. Two days earlier, President Woodrow Wilson had called the Illinois National Guard into Federal Service, along with those of several other states, to patrol the Mexican border during General John J. Pershing’s Punitive Expedition McCormick accompanied his regiment to the Mexican border.

Soon after the United States entered the war, McCormick again became part of the U.S. Army on June 13, 1917, when the entire Illinois National Guard was mobilized for Federal service in Europe. He was sent to France as an intelligence officer on the staff of General Pershing. Seeking more active service, he was assigned to an artillery school. By June 17, 1918, McCormick became a lieutenant colonel, and by September 5, 1918 had become a full colonel in the field artillery, in which capacities he saw action. He took part in the capture of Cantigny, after which he named his farm estate in Wheaton Illinois, and in the battles of Soissons Saint-Mihiel, and the second phase of the Argonne. He served in the 1st Battery, 5th field Artillery Regiment, with the 1st Infantry Division. His service ended on December 31, 1918, though he remained a part of the Officers Reserve Corps from October 8, 1919 to September 30, 1929. Cited for prompt action in battle, he received the Distinguished Service Medal. Thereafter, he was always referred to as “Colonel McCormick.”

Crusading publisher

McCormick returned from the war and took control of the Tribune in the 1920s. Given the lack of schools of journalism in the Midwestern United States at the time, McCormick and Patterson sponsored a school named for their grandfather, the Joseph Medill School of Journalism. It was announced by Walter Dill Scott in November 1920, and began classes in 1921.

As publisher of the Tribune, McCormick was involved in a number of legal disputes regarding freedom of the press that were handled by McCormick’s longtime lawyer Weymouth Kirkland. The most famous of these cases is Near v. Minnesota, 283 U.S. 697 (1931), a case championed by McCormick in his role as chairman of the American Newspaper Publisher Association’s Committee on Free Speech.

Tribune Tower Chicago

A conservative Republican, McCormick was an opponent of President Franklin D. Roosevelt and compared the New Deal to Communism. For a period in 1935, he protested Rhode Island’s Democratic Judiciary by displaying a 47 star flag outside the tribune Building, with the 13th star (representing Rhode Island) removed; he relented after he was advised that alteration of the American flag was unlawful. He was also an America First isolationist who strongly opposed entering World War II to rescue the British Empire. As a publisher he was very innovative. McCormick was a 25 percent owner of the Tribune’s 50,000 watt radio station, which was purchased in 1924; he named it WGN, the initials of the Tribune’s modest motto, the “World’s Greatest Newspaper”.…

McCormick carried on crusades against gangsters and racketeers, prohibition and prohibitionists, local, state, and national politicians, Wall Street, the East and Easterners, Democrats, the New Deal and the Fair deal, liberal Republicans, the League of Nations, the World Court, the United Nations, British imperialism, socialism, and communism. …

The New York Times said:

He did consider himself an aristocrat, and his imposing stature6 feet 4 inches tall, with a muscular body weighing over 200 pounds, his erect soldierly bearing, his reserved manner and his distinguished appearance—made it easy for him to play that role. But if he was one, he was an aristocrat, according to his friends, in the best sense of the word, despising the idle rich and having no use for parasites, dilettantes or mere pleasure-seekers, whose company, clubs and amusements he avoided. With an extraordinary capacity for hard work, he often put in seven long days a week at his job even when elderly, keeping fit through polo and later horseback riding. In his seventies, he could still get into the war uniform of his thirties. (emphasis mine)

 

Maybe now you can see why I would visit Cantigny every July Fourth. We need men like Col. McCormick today.

Long before the (Harry-Reid-demonized) philanthropic Koch Brothers, Col. McCormick’s Foundation has contributed more than a billion U.S. Dollars for journalism, early childhood education, civic health, social and economic services, arts and culture and citizenship.

Now, some of the photos I shot on July 4th, 2014 at Cantigny Park, starting with the McCormick mansion:

 McComick Mansion 7-4-2014

reflection pool McCormick mansion 7-4-2014

above, a reflection pool facing south of the mansion; below, a pool facing east of the mansion

Reflection pool facing east

The mansion’s South entrance, below:

south entrance McCormick Mansion

gardens, guns and gallantry:

Idea garden 1

garden path Cantigny

arbor Cantigny

pond Cantigny

La Fleur Cantigny

flowers Cantigny

Illinois in living color:

Illinois in living color

 A day at Cantigny with dog tags, wild turkeys, cannons, Chevys and all:

dog tags, program

wild turkey

water lily

Foutains in the Rose Garden facing the Idea Garden

fountains facing idea Garden

garden path

tank

tank

military museum

her boy - military museum

 

The wilting photog on a hot 4th:

the photographer

cannon fire

Chevy

There too many pics to download for this post.  Here are pics from last year:

July 4th, 2013 – Cantigny Park

 

 

The Fourth Of July

The star-spangled sky is having a birthday party, after hours.

Batteries of anxious fireworks try hard to contain themselves while hiding in the bushes. Aluminum chairs, stiff legs unfolded, carefully situate themselves to view the cyclorama of America’s unfolding Birthday, any moment now…

Into the height of twilight, a single whistling flare finds its way up to center stage – KA-BOOM! The crowd whoops, rattled babies cry and children run to huddle on blankets at parent’s feet.
Swoosh-swoosh-swoosh, a hunting, hinting sizzling goes upward and then another and another. Silence is paused mid-air. A cork popping whisper and then KA-BOOM! KA-BOOM! KA-BA-BOOM! Elemental colors burst above the crowd: Reverberation Red, Winter White, Brilliant Blue, Gushing Green, Poised Purple, Sparkling Silver, Yackety Yellow, Gracious Gold, Outspoken Orange.
Garden Roman candles shoot stars, spinners and colored peonies, Summer Heat fountains erupt into splashing fiber optic light. Whistlers – Sky Highs, Whistler Chasers, Scream Dreamers, screech through the sky. Cannonade artillery shells and mortars, bombastic breath takers, shock the air waves. Atomic Thunder Lords pummel the ears of men and women, boys and girls, the young and old, black or white, echoing its thunderous proclamation: “Attention: Liberty and Justice for all.”
Ashes rain down. Apparitions, Spirits of the American Revolution, waft through clouds of sulfur smoke and then disappear until next year.
Heaven’s gazers are photographed. The popping flash bulb sky captures moments of wide-eyed wonderment.
The birthday party continues on the ground. Sparklers arcing on sticks, splash light onto the faces of slack-jawed kids. Smoke bombs fume, the fog making conversation sputter. Snakes coil out of their black dot cages. Bottle rockets shoot straight up defying gravity, fizzling seconds later. Cherry bombs and M-150s snap like bull whips everywhere.
Earlier today, there has been preparation for the birthday party. Parades canopied streets. Marching bands with bugle and drum marched in 1-2-3-4 cadence. Drums called “Rat-A Tat-Tat, Rat-A Tat-Tat” and fifes whistled Yankee Doodle and slow scotch. The Stars and Stripes marched to Sousa while Uncle Sam walking on stilts made children’s fingers and toes point.
Vets sworn to protect now present the Colors: Red, White & Blue. With alacrity caps are removed. Grandparents, Liberty’s Old Guard, stretch out tired legs from lawn chairs. They stand as the High Flyin’ Grand Old Flag passes by, liberty recognized in the woven tri-color fabric.
Pies, apple and blueberry, were swallowed ala mode. Picnics popped up in city parks. Lemonade soured some looks, smacked some lips, returned youth to some in a swallow. Potato sack races tripped up with laughter. Horseshoes were flung at neighbors. Old Glory was displayed on porches and draped on banisters, her stripes and stars unfurled for anyone who will look her way. Families gave way to each other for an afternoon.
We say, “America, you are beautiful, from sea to shining sea beautiful.” Every year we see your birthday smile, your youthful ear-to-ear grin revealing your dazzling braces. We also see the wear and tear on vets standing with tattered flags, wanting to pass the torch to a deserving generation.
America, each year we return to celebrate the beauty of your unbridled hope and your pragmatic ways. Tonight, especially, the dreams of many Americans will reignite and shoot skyward adding more dazzling light to the already blazing torch of Liberty:

America is a shining city upon a hill whose beacon light guides freedom-loving people everywhere.” Ronald Reagan

© Sally Paradise, 2011, All Rights Reserved

Our Banner painted by Frederich Edwin Church

Bow to Illiberal Kowtow?

political correctness

On June 1, 2014 I posted Label Me In Christ.

 In that post I talked about how conversations are quickly shut down with name calling and labeling.  The Left ~ Progressives, Democrats, et al will use what ever means necessary to shut down any conversation that veers near the truth, reality or simple common sense. Below is what others are saying about the Left’s desired Utopian Caliphate ~ a place where their Sharia Law of Intolerance exists.

 

From Benjamin Weingarten’s post at The Blaze, April 14, 2014:

America’s Submission to Islam and the Censorship of the Left

  

For a free society to endure requires open and honest debate on ideas. The progressive Left claims it supports freedom of speech, but ask yourself on the following issues, are we free to talk or does the Left stifle debate:

The more areas of speech we circumscribe, the less freedom remains.

It would seem to me that what we have today, as opposed to the pluralistic and dynamic society that the American experiment requires, is totalitarianism masquerading under the banner of tolerance.

What we have today…is totalitarianism masquerading under the banner of tolerance.

What the Left’s intolerance reflects is that despite its moral relativism — a world without objective truths in which there is no such thing as good and evil — the Left believes there are judgments to be made, that certain values and ideas are superior: its own.

What separates the devils from the angels is simply whether or not you agree with them….

Yet despite the Left’s adherence to secular humanism, it finds common cause with Islamic supremacists.

Leftist secularists may not approve of religion, but like Islamic supremacists they have an overarching ideology that requires the stifling of all dissent.

In the final analysis, just like the Islamic supremacists, the Left wants us to all become their dhimmis. (emphasis mine)

 

More of the illiberal liberal intolerance:

The Shame of Brandeis by Charles C. W. Cooke, National review Online

Photo from VotingAmerican.com

Worker Bees, Outcome Based Education and Our Little Ones

The US education reform system creates…”Worker bees—cooperative, collaborative, team players, not too well educated but willing to work for a pittance for the good of the collective whole (ie, the state). Knowledge is power! A culturally illiterate nation will not long remain free. William Pearson Tolley, Chancelor of Syracuse University, wrote, in 1943,

“In a slave state, vocational training may be education enough. For the education of free men, much more is required. “”

As parents look at education reform, little do they realize that education and the purpose of education are being transformed. No longer is education to produce an innovative, creative, intelligent child, who has a broad but intensive liberal arts background such that he or she can reach for the star of stars of his or her choice. The purpose of education, under this transformation, this paradigm shift, is to mold the child to meet the needs of the global economy of the 21st Century, to produce a world class worker with the attitudes, values and beliefs wanted by big business.” Lynn Stuter (emphasis mine)

Above quotes from: http://www.learn-usa.com/education_transformation/~education.htm

The following quotes are from Lynn M. Stuter’s The Psychology of Becoming:

Some might look at this title and think, “This sounds like something from Abraham Maslow or Carl Rogers.”

The world view of systems governance is humanism, a religion immersed in the concept that “no deity will save us, we must save ourselves” (Humanist Manifesto, 1973). To that end, systems governance has been developed and fine tuned over a period of several decades, the purpose being to “create the future;” to decide what the world is to look like at a designated future time, then design and align everything to achieve that vision. The ultimate goal is to attain and maintain the global sustainable environment.

The concept that we must save ourselves finds basis in the humanist principle that man has no spirituality or self-determinism, that man is merely a product of his environment and must, therefore, be “conditioned” to the perceived environment of the “created future” as one system of many systems.

Conditioning necessarily requires the change of one’s existing world view — one’s existing attitudes, values, and beliefs, one’s existing behaviors. In book after book written by those advocating systems education, that it is the behavior of the individual that must be changed is apparent:

“… a large part of what we call ‘good teaching’ is the teacher’s ability to attain affective objectives through challenging the students’ fixed beliefs and getting them to discuss issues.” (Bloom, 1964)

“The individual acts consistently in accordance with the values he has internalized at this level, and our concern is to indicate two things: (a) the generalization of this control to so much of the individual’s behavior that he is described and characterized as a person by these pervasive controlling tendencies, and (b) the integration of these beliefs, ideas, and attitudes into a total philosophy or world view.” (Bloom, 1964)

“Since the real purpose of education is not to have the instructor perform certain activities but to bring about significant changes in the students’ patterns of behavior, it becomes important to recognize that any statement of the objectives … should be a statement of changes to take place in the student.” (Tyler, 1949)

“… education, as now conceived, leads to demonstrable changes in student behaviors, changes that can be assessed using agreed-upon standards.” (Conley, 1993)
The question becomes how to achieve the change in behaviors … world view … attitudes, values and beliefs.

George Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel developed a process known as the Hegelian Dialectic in which opposites (thesis and antithesis) are brought together in compromise (synthesis) to form a new thesis which becomes the view of the group participants, individually and as a whole. Hegel theorized that through a continual use of this process, small groups would evolve to a “higher plane” signified by their becoming part of an ever larger group, until “oneness of mind” in a society theoretically would occur.

Today, this process is known by at least three other names: the Delphi Technique, the Alinsky Method, and the facilitated process of consensus building. It is also the process of the “guide on the side, not the sage on the stage” ~ the teacher (now called a facilitator) in the classroom. It is the process of critical thinking, conflict resolution, peer mediation, focus groups, consensus circles … The process has the effect of forcing the individual, in order to be a member of the group (which is aggressively encouraged and pursued), to give up his individual beliefs for the beliefs of the group.

Building on Hegel’s theory, Marx came to the conclusion that religion, with its authoritarian principles and higher authority, caused alienation of the individual from the group. As such, Marx wrote, religion is antithetical to the cohesion of the group and must be eradicated.

The Hegelian Dialectic is about compromise ~ the bringing together of opposites, and from those opposites, theoretically, a new truth emerges. In this environment, there is no right or wrong answer, only differences of opinion ~ how people “feel” about an issue. In this setting right and wrong stand on equal footing.

What happens when you synthesize right (good) and wrong (evil)? Which will prevail, right or wrong?

If you believe that man is inherently good (humanist world view), you will say that man will choose right over wrong, good over evil. But if you believe that man has a sin nature (Christian world view), then you will say that man will, unless he has been instilled with a moral compass of right and wrong in obedience to the teachings of a higher authority, choose wrong or evil.

 

So it is, in consensus building, that right does not prevail, but wrong does prevail in the name of synthesis. As stated in one conflict resolution curriculum, “conflict resolution is rarely about honesty or establishing truth~it is more about unifying perceptions.” (Bodine, 1994) If you have a bully and his victim in conflict resolution or peer mediation to achieve consensus (compromise), who will prevail in such an environment? Obviously, the bully will prevail.

Returning to the concept that man must be conditioned to the perceived environment, one proponent of the New Age world view wrote:
“You can only have a new society, the visionaries have said, if you change the education of the younger generation. … Of the Aquarian Conspirators surveyed, more were involved in education than in any other single category of work. … Marion Fantini, former Ford consultant on education, now at the State University of New York, said bluntly, ‘The psychology of becoming has to be smuggled into the schools.'”

At this point, it is imperative that we remember what the new basics are: “team work, critical thinking, making decisions, communication, adapting to change and understanding whole systems” (WTECB, 1994)
As noted above, in book after book, advocating systems education, it is made very clear that behavior must be changed to achieve the wanted outcomes or exit outcomes defined at the state level, benchmarked to the national goals for workforce development, and implemented at the local level. Assessments are the tool used to determine if the wanted behaviors are being achieved.

This is occurring in the classroom via teachers (facilitators) and paraprofessionals (facilitator aides); in the counselor’s office; in the school psychologist’s office; on the playground and in the hallways via social workers who watch students and note their observations (called “profiling”).

 

What is happening in the classroom, in the name of education reform, amounts to medical malpractice. What is even worse is that the created future cannot be achieved unless a majority of children in the government school acquire the wanted belief system. That psychological manipulation is the only route (because the philosophy is not normal or natural to the human condition) from present to future should serve as a wake-up call to parents and citizens.

But many parents are going along with this, believing their child(ren) actually needs psychological help. Very few children really need psychological help, and those who do certainly do not need the type of psychological help they are getting in the government school.

The name that has been given this non-directive, feelings based education system is “psycho-education.” Psycho is right. It is destroying or badly damaging young lives and leaving children ill-equipped to meet the realities of the world beyond the classroom.

Some Christian parents send their child(ren) to the government schools, believing that in so doing, they are following the commandment of God to “go forth and witness.” The bible also says, in three consecutive chapters;
“But whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to sin … to stumble … to be offended, it would be better for him if a millstone were hung about his neck, and he were drowned in the depth of the sea.” (KJV)
Can we surmise that Christ commanded us to protect these “little ones” from harms way? Most adults could not withstand what these children are being subjected to on a daily basis in the closed environment of the government school. How could any Christian parent believe their child(ren) could withstand the same?

Quotes from Lynn M. Stuter – The Psychology of Becoming (February 26, 2003!!!)

Now a few chilling words from Cynthia Weatherly:

 

 

 Education:

Logocentrism

A Landscape With Dragons; Harry Potter and the Paganization of Culture

The Deliberate Dumbing Down of America

The New School: How the Information Age Will Save American Education from Itself

The Higher Education Bubble (Encounter Broadsides)

 

Educators:

The People of the “White Privilege” Lie

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