Saturday, July 29, 2006

What Hath God Wroght?

I went out camping this weekend and while we were out, we hiked up to Hanging Lake. As we went along, I often looked around at the wonders of God's hand all around me. The mountains, the trees, the river, the lake itself; all incedible and mindboggling. I look at what God has made, and can't help but be reminded Psalms 8:
"When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and
the stars, which thou hast ordained;
What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and
the son of man, that thou visitest him?"

God's creation is truely magnificent, and I find it very humbling that God, who created all the heavens and the earth, should care so much about humanity that he would send his Son to die for us. I also find it amazing tha anyone can look at something so amazing as a cliff that has a continuous stream of water pooring out of it, a crystal clear lake over a thoughsand feet above the canyon floor, or even a tree or insect, and not realize that God created it all. God's creation is truely humbling, and inspiring at the same time.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Freedom and Chaos

I ran across an interesting quote today:

"Freedom is just Chaos, with better lighting." - Alan Dean Foster

To a certain extent, this is true. Total freedom is chaos, for that would be a people without any restraint. However, freedom does not always equal chaos. America was founded to be nation where the people had freedom, but where that freedom was restrained by their own sense of responsibility. This is why, when a nation looses it's moral core, it disintegrates into despotism and anarchy. This restrained freedom is illustrated well by Mark Twain, "It is by the goodness of God that in our country we have those three unspeakably precious things: freedom of speech, freedom of conscience, and the prudence never to practice either of them."

Without restraint, freedom becomes chaos. However, when a people have the moral restraint that comes with Christianity, freedom will grow and flourish, making that people into a great nation. That is why America has become the greatest nation on earth. And that is why, unless we return out culture to its Christian roots, we will dissolve into chaos, and then tyranny.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

"Excessive use of force"

The current conflict between Israel and the Terrorist group Hezbollah has sparked an interesting question. UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan said about the conflict, "Both the deliberate targeting by Hezbollah of Israeli population centers with hundreds of indiscriminate weapons and Israel's disproportionate use of force and collective punishment of the Lebanese people must stop." I have seen the phrases "disproportionate use of force" and "excessive use of force" used a lot to describe Israel's response to the kidnapping of 2 soldiers, and rocket attacks from the terrorists. My question to you is, what is wrong with responding disproportionately?

Let's examine this question with a hypothetical situation. Say that you are mugged, and the guy robbing you threatens you with a knife. At your disposal are a knife of your own, and a pistol. What is the best way to defend yourself (for the sake of argument, giving up is not an option)? If you are to respond "proportionately," you would pull out just your knife. However, that would be stupid, and would most likely result in injury to yourself. A gun is certainly disproportionate to a knife, but it is the best means of defending yourself. Similarly, Israel has one of the strongest militarise in the world, when they are attacked by rockets, should they simply fire a few rockets back? That is the proportionate use of force, but would be one of the worst courses of action possible. Responding proportionately results in a stalemate.

Israel did, indeed respond to Hezbollah with a disproportionate use of force, but that is exactly how one should respond in war. Otherwise, you'll end up in a far worse situation than you were in to begin with.

Looks like I was wrong...

According to this article, it looks like what I've said for a while about the purpose of blogging was wrong. I've said for a long time that Blogs aught to have some sort of news analysis as their primary purpose. Basically, that they are personal talk shows for the Internet. It looks like I was wrong. Blogs are used primary as a way for people to share the events of their daily lives, and their own creations (whether writing or pictures or the like). So, it looks like Phillip and the other xanga users I've been harassing for years have normal blogs, and I'm the weird one.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Embryonic Stem Cell Research

There has been a lot of talk in the past day or two about embryonic stem cell research, primarily because the Senate just passed a bill expanding the legality of this type of research, as well as providing more federal dollars to it. This bill raises a number of important questions, from how viable is this technique, to is it morally right to sacrifice one person in order to save another.

Let us assume that embryonic stem cells really have the amazing potential that some people claim they do, that they really can cure paralysis, diabetes, Alzheimer's, and any number of other conditions. Let us also assume, for the sake of argument, that there are no viable alternatives to embryonic stem cells. Keep in mind that, in the process of extracting these cells, the unborn baby is killed. The only question remaining is the morality of destroying one life to save another. Is it right to kill an innocent person for the chance to save another? Self defense and defense of the helpless do not apply here, as the one to be killed is a baby. There is only one answer that can be given to this question, and it is undeniably "no!"

Even if this technology were the only way to cure these diseases, and it was guaranteed to work, it would still be immoral to sacrifice thousands of children to the cure, much less to research. What this bill is asking for is nothing less than child sacrifice, one of the most abhorrent practices that mankind has ever fallen into. It's just coated in scientific terms and "academic detachment." This sort of research is just as immoral as abortion.

Not only is embryonic stem cell research immoral, it is neither the only option, nor the most promising option. Stem cells can be extracted from adults, without causing their death. These adult stem cells have been used with more success than embryonic stem cells, and have none of the harmful side effects (similar to allergic reactions). With better alternatives available, why would we push for research into an area that is so clearly immoral? The answer can only be that our society has become so twisted by humanism and other lies, that we no longer value the lives of the innocent as we should. Thankfully, President Bush used his first veto on this bill. However, with the bill passing both houses of Congress, it is not likely to stay dead for very long. We need leaders who will not grow tired of doing good, but will continually stand for what is right.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Political parties

When we go to the voting booths in August, and again in November, how will we decide who to vote for? If you're like most Americans, you'll look for the D or R after their name, and mark accordingly. While a political party can be a good indicator for what a candidate stands for, should it really be the sole, or even the primary motivation behind voting for them? When you look at the ballot this fall, ask yourself what you really know about the candidates, or the issues on it. Ask why you are voting this way or that, and see if you can justify your actions with more than party-line votes.

When we elect leaders to represent us, that is what we should be voting for: leadership. We should seek out candidates who will not make every decision based on how the winds of politics is blowing today, but on what they know is right and wrong. We need leadership who will lead, as a statesman should, not politicians who will do anything for power.

Basically, vote for the person, not the party. This is the only way that we can change the political beast that has taken over most areas of government.

Friday, July 07, 2006


An extremely disturbing website came to my attention this afternoon. I mean this sincerely, it is a real website, published by the US government. The website is, that stands for Security and Prosperity Partnership Of North America. The description sounds an awful lot like that of the European Union.

The question is, what are our leaders doing? Are they really trying to merge with Mexico and Canada? It certainly seems so.

This organization, if it does turn into a North American union, would violate our national sovereignty more than the UN ever has. America was founded as a sovereign nation, and if we are going to merge with another nation, it must be through the constitution, not some "international" body.

This is another example of globalism run amok. America is the most powerful nation on earth; we have the resources and the people to compete and excel in the world, if we are only allowed to do so. Diluting the wealth and power of the US will not help us. We need to shore up the foundation of this nation, not add more infrastructure, corruption, and regulation to an already overstressed legal system.

I may be overreacting (but what are Blogs for?); however it seems to me that something must be done, or we may just wake up one day, and find ourselves no longer citizens of the United States, but of Mexamericanada.

Video Games

As most of my readers (assuming, of course, that I have any) know, I have spent much of my life playing video games. I really was, at one time, addicted to them. However, in the past few months, I have simply had too much to do to spend very much of my time gaming. I've gone to a couple of LAN parties, and played a little here and there, but nothing like any previous summer. They say that "absence makes the heart grow fonder," but this has definitely not been the case with me and video games.

I've gone back and looked at some of the games I have not yet beaten, and watched my siblings play games (ironically, almost all them I purchased), and I just don't see any reason to play them like I used to. In the past, I justified playing for several reasons. 1) Stress relief, 2) Forces you to think (only worked on a few games), 3) Engaging Story and 4) Entertaining.

I have found that none of these justifications really holds watter when compared with other activities. There are far better ways to relieve stress than causing the destruction or conquest of a digital world. There are definitely better ways to force yourself to think. As for engaging stories and entertainment value, some of the lamest books I've read, and even most movies, had better stories than the majority of video games I've played, especially those made in the past couple of years. The only reasons I can come up with to still game at all is as a social activity (LAN party) or as a short distraction (like playing Mine Sweeper or Solitaire [or maybe something more interesting] for a few minutes). Neither of these justifies hours of gaming every day.

Basically, I've finally realised that what my parents have been telling me for years really is true. There really are better things to do with your time than sit in front of a TV or computer screen and play games. I know many of you still game too much, so my message to you is: Go get some fresh air, make sure you see the sun at least once a day, and pick up a better hobby, like sword fighting.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Deja vu?

I was reading about the recent presidential election in Mexico, and the course of events sounds strangely familiar. A leftist candidate and conservative candidate have an extremely close race, the initial count indicates that the conservative is the victor. However, the vote count is so close, a recount is necessary. Throughout the recount, the indicated winner changes back and forth, and in the end the conservative candidate still wins. However, that is not the end of the story, the leftist candidate, not willing to loose in a fair fight, appeals the decision in court, accusing the conservative of fraud and cheating.

I couldn't help but remember the 2000 presidential election here when I started hearing about this. Do you think the result will be the same? You'd think Politicians would learn that whining rarely pays off.