Saturday, May 30, 2009

a night that will live in infamy

The Toilet Paper Shortage of 1973

The entire episode started with a Johnny Carson Tonight Show monologue. Writers for the show had heard that the federal government was falling behind in getting bids to supply its toilet paper requirements and, according to Wisconsin congressman Harold Froehlich, that the country should shortly be facing a shortage of this crucial commodity. Vulgarians, of course they recognized the comedic potential and included the item as a joke for Carson.

On December 19, 1973, Carson used the joke, stating, "You know what's disappearing from the supermarket shelves? Toilet paper. There's an acute shortage of toilet paper in the United States."

Much to the amazement of not only the show but of toilet paper factories across America, 20 million people that watched the Carson show that evening ran out in the morning and bought as much toilet paper as they could carry. By noon on December 20, 1973, practically every store in America was out of stock. Many of the stores tried to ration this valuable paper but they could not keep up with the demand no matter what they did.

A few nights later, Carson explained there was no actual shortage and apologized to his viewers. However, this did not help with the scare. People noticed the empty shelves and the panic increased. It took about three weeks to get the shelves stocked again.

news brief: Guantánamo Detainee Ruled Not Mentally Fit To Testify About Psychological Torture

WASHINGTON—In its first major hearing on the use of abusive interrogation tactics at Guantánamo Bay, a blue-ribbon panel found detainee Omar Khadr mentally unfit to testify about his years of psychological torture. "Because of Mr. Khadr's fragile state due to unknown hours spent under the most brutal, mentally straining conditions, he cannot be trusted to speak competently on his own behalf," said Rep. Kit Bond (R-MO), the panel's chairman. "It is unfortunate that someone with such intimate knowledge of the horrors of waterboarding, stress positions, and induced hypothermia is so emotionally unstable. He bursts into tears at even the mention of mock torture." Bond added that Khadr's confession of planning 9/11, the London train bombings, and the Iranian hostage crisis would be kept on the record
--May 21, 2009, Onion.

April 27, 2009 editorial from Pravda (no kidding)

American capitalism gone with a whimper

It must be said, that like the breaking of a great dam, the American decent into Marxism is happening with breath taking speed, against the back drop of a passive, hapless sheeple, excuse me dear reader, I meant people.

True, the situation has been well prepared on and off for the past century, especially the past twenty years. The initial testing grounds was conducted upon our Holy Russia and a bloody test it was. But we Russians would not just roll over and give up our freedoms and our souls, no matter how much money Wall Street poured into the fists of the Marxists.

Those lessons were taken and used to properly prepare the American populace for the surrender of their freedoms and souls, to the whims of their elites and betters.

First, the population was dumbed down through a politicized and substandard education system based on pop culture, rather then the classics. Americans know more about their favorite TV dramas then the drama in DC that directly affects their lives. They care more for their "right" to choke down a McDonalds burger or a BurgerKing burger than for their constitutional rights. Then they turn around and lecture us about our rights and about our "democracy". Pride blind the foolish.

Then their faith in God was destroyed, until their churches, all tens of thousands of different "branches and denominations" were for the most part little more then Sunday circuses and their televangelists and top protestant mega preachers were more then happy to sell out their souls and flocks to be on the "winning" side of one pseudo Marxist politician or another. Their flocks may complain, but when explained that they would be on the "winning" side, their flocks were ever so quick to reject Christ in hopes for earthly power. Even our Holy Orthodox churches are scandalously liberalized in America.

The final collapse has come with the election of Barack Obama. His speed in the past three months has been truly impressive. His spending and money printing has been a record setting, not just in America's short history but in the world. If this keeps up for more then another year, and there is no sign that it will not, America at best will resemble the Wiemar Republic and at worst Zimbabwe.

These past two weeks have been the most breath taking of all. First came the announcement of a planned redesign of the American Byzantine tax system, by the very thieves who used it to bankroll their thefts, loses and swindles of hundreds of billions of dollars. These make our Russian oligarchs look little more then ordinary street thugs, in comparison. Yes, the Americans have beat our own thieves in the shear volumes. Should we congratulate them?

The view that states can do wrong is the most powerful theory of politics in the history of the world.
--Llewellyn Rockwell

Thursday, May 28, 2009

the americanization of emily

Don't miss this classic scene.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

he's a rebel and he'll never be any good

"Louisville, KY 5/22/09: Wendell Berry, also wearing a nice suit, said that the problem N.A.I.S. [National Animal Identification System] was supposed to solve was a problem caused by agricultural industrialists themselves, who now intended to use that problem as a pretext to further marginalize and limit the possibilities of small-scale agriculture. He said it was insulting to rural Kentuckians that USDA had hired policemen to be present at this listening session. He noted that USDA's fear of the people they were supposed to be serving made it clear what N.A.I.S. was all about. And he said that if NAIS were implemented, USDA was going to need far more than a couple of policemen to deal with the resistance and civil disobedience that would result. Naming Henry David Thoreau, Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr. as honorable examples of the tradition of non-violent non-compliance, Berry said he would absolutely not comply with N.A.I.S. As an older person, he said he had little to lose by going to jail for the sake of the younger generations whose lives and livelihoods would be threatened or eliminated by such oppression, and who still did have much to lose."

The Mad Farmer's Love Song

O when the world's at peace
and every man is free
then will I go down unto my love.

O and I may go down
several times before that.

--Wendell Berry

excellent advice

“Be joyful though you have considered all the facts.”
--Wendell Berry

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

from Arthur Henry King

What the Lord said to Brother Joseph was, "They are all wrong." And if He condemned all the churches of his time, you may be quite certain that He condemned the total culture at the time, because the religion is always the basis of the culture and in condemning the churches, the culture was condemned also. We are still in a society which is wronger than ever. The whole of it is wrong--wrong--it's in the wrong direction. There are individuals, and there's another matter; I'm talking about society as a whole. And this Church has been given the responsibility by the Lord, in His absence, not merely to live the life of Saints as we do at the moment, but responsibility for changing the arts, changing the philosophy, changing everything in accordance with what happened in the 1830's and the 1840's in the new dispensation. We are the bearers of that new dispensation. We are the bearers of the post-Descartes, post-Bacon period. We are the bearers of the post-scientific period. We are the bearers of the period in which the humanities and the sciences must again come together in a different way than before.

from J. Golden Kimball:

What Is a "Good Man"?

I take it that we will all be relieved when I get through. I certainly got the surprise of my life this morning. I anticipated being in agony most of the conference. I desire you to know and feel that I am trying to tell the truth, which I find is a very difficult thing to do. It is not my intention to skate around on thin ice and keep you people in anxiety. I know as well as I know anything that a man cannot speak to the Latter-day Saint people--in fact he should not, if he can only determine the matter--except when he is under the influence of the Holy Ghost. I have never been able to determine when I am going to speak by the direction of the Holy Ghost, and sometimes when I thought I had it, some of the brethren did not think so. So it leaves me in doubt and uncertainty.

I do not know why we should be fearful among our people or anywhere else as long as we make efforts to serve God and keep his commandments.

I have been thinking about something for some time. I haven't got it in the form of a speech. Men come to me occasionally, not very often, and shake me by the hand and say, "I am glad to shake hands with a good man." I never feel so "cheap" as when that happens, and I have always been thankful that they did not know me so well as I know myself. It is along that line that I would like to talk to you for a few minutes.

What is a good man? That has been a big problem with me. I have had a good deal of business dealings with men who claimed to be good men. They said they were good, and they told me how good they were; and when they got through with me, I did not have anything left. [Laughter.] Whenever a man comes to me now and tells me how honest he is, how good he is, I am not going to do business with him.

I am going to read to you a little from the Book of Mormon. I remember an apostle on one occasion--I had been interviewed regarding something I had preached--said to me, "Golden, why don't you read the Book of Mormon?"

I said: "I do as much as you do." And that was true at that time.

I have read the Book of Mormon. I have tried to understand it. I have tried to appreciate it; I have tried to believe it as my father believed it. There was no book that Heber C. Kimball read more and believed in more than he did the Book of Mormon.

I find that a man can act good and talk good and look good and not do any good. That which I am going to read to you is from Moroni's writings in which he tells something about a good man, which his father had told him. I haven't the time to tell you about the goodness and greatness of Mormon and Moroni, but I have great love for those characters. I quote the following [Moroni 7:5-15]:

For I remember the word of God, which saith by their works ye shall know them; for if their works be good, then they are good also.

For behold, God hath said a man being evil cannot do that which is good; for if he offereth a gift, or prayeth unto God, except he shall do it with real intent it profiteth him nothing.

For behold, it is not counted unto him for righteousness.

For behold, if a man being evil giveth a gift, he doeth it grudgingly; wherefore it is counted unto him the same as if he had retained the gift; wherefore he is counted evil before God.

And likewise also it is counted evil unto a man, if he shall pray and not with real intent of heart; yea, and it profiteth him nothing, for God receiveth none such.

Wherefore, a man being evil cannot do that which is good--

I am glad he bears down on that.

--neither will he give a good gift.

For behold, a bitter fountain cannot bring forth good water; neither can a good fountain bring forth bitter water; wherefore, a man being a servant of the devil cannot follow Christ; and if he follow Christ he cannot be a servant of the devil.

Wherefore, all things which are good cometh of God; and that which is evil cometh of the devil; for the devil is an enemy unto God, and fighteth against him continually, and inviteth and enticeth to sin, and to do that which is evil continually.

But behold, that which is of God inviteth and enticeth to do good continually: wherefore, every thing which inviteth and enticeth to do good, and to love God, and to serve him, is inspired of God.

Wherefore, take heed, my beloved brethren, that ye do not judge that which is evil to be of God, or that which is good and of God to be of the devil.

For behold, my brethren, it is given unto you to judge, that ye may know good from evil; and the way to judge is as plain, that ye may know with a perfect knowledge, as the daylight is from the dark night.

I desire now to call your attention to what Moroni said just prior to hiding the plates in the Hill Cumorah. It is just what we read in the Bible. I might go into this subject a little in detail, but time will not permit. I am not given to discussing things to be arbitrary, but when I make a statement, I want to do so hoping that you will think about it and get some good out of it. In this matter of choosing men that is what brings this to my mind--I am one of that number representing the First Council of the Seventy. There are constant changes in our councils, brought about through changes in other work of the Church. Men are taken out of our quorums to serve as high councilors, bishop's counselors, and for other purposes; and then the bishops of wards and presidencies of stakes recommend to us men to fill those vacancies. So we are all the time ordaining seventies and setting apart presidents to keep these quorums intact as far as we can. All these men are recommended to us as good men, and the bishops believe that they are good men, and most of them are good men; but there are some of them who have not proved to be very good. Some of these elders who have been recommended to be seventies, I do not know why they recommend them. Out of the number some of them are very choice men, but other elders that we ordain seventies, it is the last time we see them, and then we are blamed for the condition of quorums. But of course the responsibility rests with us to labor with those men and make of them, through the blessings of the Lord, good men.

Now this is the part I want to read, and I believe this. I may be of the old school, but I have heard it all my life. I believe it in my heart and with my whole soul. If it is not true, "then there is no truth, but we have been mistaken from our youth." We as a Church know this to be true:

"And again, I exhort you, my brethren,"--says Moroni, and this was about the last that he wrote

that ye deny not the gifts of God, for they are many; and they come from the same God. And there are different ways that these gifts are administered; but it is the same God who worketh all in all; and they are given by the manifestations of the Spirit of God unto men, to profit them.

For behold, to one is given by the Spirit of God that he may teach the word of wisdom--

What a wonderful gift!

And to another, that he may teach the word of knowledge by the same Spirit;

And to another, exceeding great faith; and to another, the gifts of healing by the same Spirit.

And again, to another, that he may work mighty miracles....

And again, to another, the beholding of angels and ministering spirits....

And all these gifts come by the spirit of Christ; and they come unto every man severally. according as he will.

And I would exhort you, my beloved brethren, that ye remember that every good gift cometh of Christ. [Moroni 10:8-18.]

And now, my beloved brethren [Mormon's words], if this be the case that these things are true which I have spoken unto you, and God will show unto you, with power and great glory at the last day, that they are true, and if they are true has the day of miracles ceased?...

Behold I say unto you, Nay [Moroni 7:35, 37].

Wherefore, if these things have ceased, then has faith ceased also; and awful is the state of man....

But behold, my beloved brethren, I judge better things of you, for I judge that ye have faith in Christ because of your meekness; for if you have not faith in him then ye are not fit to be numbered among the people of this church [Moroni 7:38, 39].

And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things. And whatsoever thing is good is just and true; wherefore, nothing that is good denieth the Christ, but acknowledgeth that he is. [Moroni 10:5, 6.]

Moroni exhorts us that we deny not the gifts of God, for they are many and they come from the same God. And there are different ways, and they are given by the manifestations of the Spirit of God unto men to profit them.

Notwithstanding all these great gifts, no man--however great--can lead, guide, and direct The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints unless he is divinely authorized and appointed as the prophet, seer, and revelator.

And I exhort you to remember these things; for the time speedily cometh that ye shall know that I lie not, for ye shall see me at the bar of God; and the Lord God will say unto you: Did I not declare my words unto you, which were written by this man, like as one crying from the dead, yea, even as one speaking out of the dust? [Moroni 10:27.]

Patriarchs tell me that prophecy is one of my gifts. It is only my gift through faith and through living up to the precepts of the gospel of Christ.

I have been told that I should prophesy. I want to say to you Latter-day Saints that to be a prophet of God all fear and all doubt have to leave your mind, and you then open your mouth and God gives you the words. But I have become so fearful about things I would be afraid to let it loose. I want to tell you there are a lot of us in the same fix. We are afraid of what people will think and are doubtful about its fulfilment.

When Heber C. Kimball prophesied that goods would be sold as cheap in the streets of Salt Lake as in New York, he himself turned to President Young and said:

"Brother Young, I think I have made a mistake."

Brother Young said, "Never mind, Heber. Let it go."

Charles C. Rich, after the meeting, said: "Heber, I don't believe a word you said."

Heber said: "Neither do I." [Laughter.] But he said: "God has spoken." And God had spoken.

No wonder he was frightened, for the people were in the depths of poverty, a thousand miles away from nowhere.

My testimony to you is that those gifts and promises are the heritage of God's children. I am not a visionary man; I am not a dreamer. I sometimes wonder what my gift is. I have never seen an angel, but I have the assurance that comes to me and is burned in my heart like a living fire by the power of the Holy Ghost that God is the Father, that Jesus is the Christ. | believe with all my soul that Joseph Smith was a prophet and is a prophet of God, and God knows there is ample proof to substantiate it. I also believe that Heber J. Grant is a prophet of God; and whenever God gets ready to give him something to tell you, I promise you in the name of the Lord you will get it, and you will get it straight, too.

The Lord bless you. Amen.

--October Conference of the Church, 1932.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

There is a vitality, a life force, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique, and if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium; and be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is, not how it compares with other expression. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open. You do not even have to believe in yourself or your work. You have to keep open and aware directly to the urges that motivate you. Keep the channel open. No artist is pleased. There is no satisfaction whatever at any time. There is only a queer, divine dissatisfaction, a blessed unrest that keeps us marching and makes us more alive than the others.
- Martha Graham on dance

Monday, May 18, 2009

if you don't talk like some people do

Some are lost because they are different. They feel as though they don’t belong. Perhaps because they are different, they find themselves slipping away from the flock. They may look, act, think, and speak differently than those around them and that sometimes causes them to assume they don’t fit in. They conclude that they are not needed.

Tied to this misconception is the erroneous belief that all members of the Church should look, talk, and be alike. The Lord did not people the earth with a vibrant orchestra of personalities only to value the piccolos of the world. Every instrument is precious and adds to the complex beauty of the symphony. All of Heavenly Father’s children are different in some degree, yet each has his own beautiful sound that adds depth and richness to the whole.

This variety of creation itself is a testament of how the Lord values all His children. He does not esteem one flesh above another, but He “inviteth them all to come unto him and partake of his goodness; and he denieth none that come unto him, black and white, bond and free, male and female; … all are alike unto God.”
--Elder Joseph Wirthlin, "Concern for the One," April 2008

Monday, May 11, 2009

“A good way of testing the caliber of a philosophy is to ask what it thinks of death.”
--George Santayana

“Nor need you doubt your conversion, your change of heart, because you cannot tell the day when it took place, as many profess to do. It did not take place in a day, or you might tell it. It is the growth of years (Mark 4:26–28), and therefore all the more reliable. You cannot tell when you learned to walk, talk, think, and work. You do not know when you learned to love your earthly father, much less the heavenly.” Heidelberg Catechism, Twentieth–Century Edition

Cue Frank Chodorov yet again. It was Chodorov who gave the classic libertarian response when asked, during the '50s Red Scare, what he'd do about the dreadful danger of Commies in government jobs: "Abolish the jobs!" Or, stated otherwise, “The way to get rid of crime in high places is to get rid of high places."

Friday, May 8, 2009

“Wind from the Sea” by Andrew Wyeth

Psychiatrist Irvin D. Yalom describes a therapeutic exercise he has conducted many times. He brings together in a room a large number of people who are strangers to one another. They are told to pair up and ask their partner one single question, "what do you want?" and to ask it over and over again. He states:

"Could anything be simpler? One innocent question and its answer: And yet, time after time, I have seen this group exercise evoke unexpectedly powerful feelings. Often, within minutes, the room rocks with emotion. Men and women--and they are by no means deperate or needy, but successful, well-functioning, well-dressed people who glitter as they walk--are sitrred to their depths. They call out to those who are forever lost--dead or absent parents, spouses, children, friends: 'I want to see you again.' 'I want your love.''I want to know you are proud of me.' 'I want you to know I love you and how sorry I am I never told you.''I want you back--I am so lonely.''I want the childhood I never had.' So much wanting. So much longing. And so much pain, so close to the surface, only minutes deep. Destiny pain. Existence pain. Pain that is always there, whirring continuously just beneath the membrane of life."

--The Theory and Practice of Group Psychotherapy.

He is the Way.
Follow Him through the Land of Unlikeness;
You will see rare beasts, and have unique adventures.

He is the Truth.
Seek Him in the Kingdom of Anxiety;
You will come to a great city that has expected your return for years.

He is the Life.
Love Him in the World of the Flesh;
And at your marriage all its occasions shall dance for joy.

(W H Auden – 1907-1973)(from Christmas Oratorio)