Saturday, June 30, 2012


In that inspired document, the Constitution, the Lord prescribed the way, the procedure by which the inspired framework of that Constitution could be changed. Whenever the Constitution is amended in that way, it will be an amendment that the Lord will approve; but whenever it is amended in any other way than he prescribed, we are not following the commandment of the Lord and must expect to lose our liberties and freedom.

But if we are to have an amendment by the will of one man, or of a small group of men, if they can amend the Constitution, then we shall lose the Constitution; because each succeeding person or group who come into a position of place and power where they can “amend” the charter, will want to amend it again, and so on until no vestige of our liberties shall remain. Thus it comes that an amendment of our Constitution by one person or by a group is a violation of the revealed will of the Lord of the church, as that will is embodied in that inspired Constitution.

Brethren, let us think about that, because I say unto you with all the soberness I can, that we stand in danger of losing our liberties, and that once lost, only blood will bring them back; and once lost, we of this church will, in order to keep the church going forward, have more sacrifices to make and more persecutions to endure than we have yet known, heavy as our sacrifices and grievous as our persecutions of the past have been. 
-J Reuben Clark, Jr., 1944 


I originally wrote a big long screed about the supreme court decision from yesterday, but it was too depressing so I killed it. The main gist is that it's the final turning point between freedom and subjectivity. That now absolutely any behavior (or lack of behavior) can be punished with a tax if you can just get enough of a temporary majority in congress to pass it, the flood gates will open. I bet $10,000 that the next thing will be tax penalties for 'non-green' things like SUVs and such. They'll argue that it's for the planet and you don't hate the planet, do you? And we will tax ourselves into oblivion.

Even worse, this was a battle that is now permanently lost. It would be one thing if things could be undone with an election. And yes, Romney could win and will repeal Obamacare and that would be great...until the next Democrat president rounds up a slim majority in Congress and decides to tax people for not buying GM cars or Al Gore books or Indigo Girls CDs or something. The press would cheer it all on and say it's all for our own good.

Freedom, once ceded, can't be recovered.

Many have circulated the 'constitution hanging by a thread' prophecy around in the last few days but I don't think this is the thing that will fulfill that. It would take 2-4 supreme court justices retiring in the next 4-8 years, a President Romney replacing them all with apostles, and then the court overturning this decision. So that won't happen. I think it's more to do with religious freedom, I'm guessing something to do with freedom to worship. I'm guessing that one day someone will conjure a right to gay marriage out of the constitution and then will try to force churches to participate? It's just a hunch but it seems logical to me.

In short, I completely agree with this guy's article, which says:
A bulwark for our constitutional liberty and rights has been smashed.  Taxes do not involve commercial-purchase mandates...If we do not abide by those definitions and limits, then there will be no limit on what SCOTUS will say Congress can “tax-mandate” out of our wallets.

Oh well.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012


We saw "Brave" last night. It was good. Chick flick, but better than the reviews suggested. Scary for little kids, though! Scary bears and stuff, plus nude bums. Really. Bums. Nude ones.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012


We recently re-watched the Tim Burton version of Willy Wonka. It was much funnier the 2nd time than it was the first go around. However, it has several flaws.

1. The songs, except for Veruka's, are really lame. I know Tim Burton loves Danny Elfman but Danny Elfman has only written one good pop song ever, ("Stay," by Oingo Boingo) and that was about 25 years ago. He should have got someone else to do the songs w/ lyrics and words and let Elfman stick to the score.
2. The only people at the end that learn anything are Willy Wonka and Veruka Salt's dad. Augustus Gloop is eating chocolate off his body, Mike Teavee is just really tall and flattened, Violet can do flips, and Veruka still wants ridiculous things. No one learned anything!
3. The wrong person won. Charlie won by default because he happened to luck out to not run into a room that would exploit his weakness. What naughty thing would he do? Be really annoying and poor and preachy. He's always quietly kind of moralizing and saying stupid things like, "it doesn't have to have a point. It's candy!" Plus he has big ears and looks really goofy. He's not cool at all, and he has a tender heart. Those are not good skills to succeed in business.

The real winner deserves to be Mike Teavee. He correctly deduces that Wonka's transporter is the most important invention ever and then personally tests it. That's my kind of CEO. He could have delegated it but he stepped right up. Plus he has good hair and a 'can do' attitude.

So the next person that remakes this movie (give it about 5 more years or so), please keep this in mind.

Monday, June 25, 2012


A few months ago I read an interesting book called 'Will Storr vs. The Supernatural' in which a British journalist and avowed agnostic and spiritual skeptic set out to prove or disprove the existence of ghosts.

It was a really fun read since he visited all sorts of people and situations. Hauntings, poltergeists, possessions, psychics, mediums, spiritual guides, priests, scientists, skeptics, journalists, and so on. The entire crux of his book was that if there is an afterlife, then everything he learned in church had to be true.

If memory serves, he was raised Catholic, so obviously this isn't specifically true, but in the end he saw and experienced so many supernatural things through interviews, going on ghost hunts, staying the nights in haunted houses, and so on, that he concluded not just that the afterlife was real, but that if it was real then God obviously was the one who created it, and therefore he needed to live a moral life. He saw no choice in the matter. If it's true, you must act and believe as X. For it to not be true and not live as X would be suicide.

A really great and unexpected conclusion. It was almost like watching a conversion occur in real time. It dealt more with conversion through evidence than faith, but if you arrive at the right station, I guess it doesn't matter as much which bus you took?

Sunday, June 24, 2012


I've been reading 'Mormon Scientist,' the biography of Henry Eyring, who was Henry's B's dad. I hadn't heard of him before but it's apparent from the book that he was a Utah/Church celebrity from the 1930s-80s, was an extremely accomplished scientist, was very well known and respected, and gave a great many speeches on the confluence of science and religion/faith.

He takes a slightly frustrating but understandable stance, i.e. that he doesn't hazard any guesses or theories on how it all came to be. He just states his testimony and then states that he believes it was all done 'however it was done' and that the various scientific findings on evolutions and dinosaurs and the age of the earth and such will be explained in due time.

Of course this is true. He really didn't like people's theories on such things, and likely would have not approved of the theory I wrote about earlier on my blog on dinosaur bones and stuff being 'stumbling blocks' to try our faith. I of course still think I'm right, but certainly I could be wrong and maybe they have nothing to do with faith. It's possible! But probably not, because I'm totally right!

Anyway, he did have some good points. Frustrating points but good nonetheless. He said things like (paraphrase) "God could explain to me how He did the whole thing and I probably wouldn't understand most of it." He also said there is room in the church for people who think the Earth is 24 hours old and for people who think its 24 billion yeas old. He often was called upon to counsel the first presidency in matters of science or to give his opinion.

I'm more speculative than he was. He kind of had the opinion of 'we wouldn't understand it anyway so why theorize?' Duh, because theories are COOL.

Interesting stuff. Have any of my readers heard of him before?