Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Russian Influence on Who is in White House Might go back to 1963

   All this talk of the Russians affecting the U.S. election, and now this: Russia may have been involved in the assassination of John F. Kennedy. And, no, this is not a story just for the National Enquirer.
  History, the television channel, has new evidence KGB operatives met with Kennedy's killer about eight weeks before the assassination. For the first time on camera, the KGB operative relates how he met with Lee Harvey Oswald.
   That's a KGB agent, no less, saying the KGB met with Oswald. If I understand it correctly, the agent, himself is the one who met with him. I'm surprised the agent is still alive. We are coming up on the 100th anniversary of Kennedy's birth (May 29). He was murdered Nov. 22, 1963. That's almost 54 years ago.
   With our intelligence community looking into Russian influence in our elections, and with some talk suggesting they might have been doing this before 2016, we should wonder if their influence on who occupies the  White House goes back more than half a century.
    I wonder if our intelligence community should be looking into this, anew, as part of the current investigation. Just how far back does the Russian influence go?

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

He Who Never Seeks, Never Finds

He who never seeks, never finds,
And, he who never aspires, never climbs.
Or, we could say
It another way.
The man who sits in the dust of others
Is the same who shivers under the covers.
So, shake off the dust,
And do what you must.
Turn up the heat in the old furnace place.
And get out of bed, and enter the race.

Adventures in the World of Dreams and Seems

   From the World of Dreams and Seems (as in, seems we could do this, if we really wanted to):
   What if Utah was so ambitious about technological advancements that if something was done someplace else in the nation, Utah figured it could do it, too.
   If Detroit made an automobile, Utah would turn around and make its own. If someone in Illinois discovered a new particle, then Utah would say, Well, if it takes an energy collider to make such discoveries, then let's get one, so we will be in position to make such advancements.
   If a company sprouted up in California making a great electric car (that would be Tesla, wouldn't it), Utah would respond with a company of its own.
   This kind of competition exists internationally, with China and other countries seeking to out-do the U.S. economically. And, if you will notice, the country that aspires to match other countries does achieve. Think of the space race, and of how it resulted in each country making achievements.
   So, why not Utah, as a state, take up such an attitude?
   And, not just in economics. What if Utah sought to be at the forefront of everything from heart science to immigration? Actually, I'm not sure if there isn't some of that spirit present, already, but it certainly could be compounded.
   And, it doesn't seem such a bad thing to seek to be the leader.
   Too ambitious? I don't know if anything negative would come of our efforts. In the World of Dreams and Seems, it seems it would spark our economy, adding jobs and GSP (gross state product).

(Note: This is a rewrite of a blog from six years ago today.)

Monday, April 24, 2017

There is Power to Lift Our Nation's Character in Overcoming Racism

    Racism? If a nation is infected with it, how much damage does it do to those who are infected? How much does it hurt us, the people who are infected?
   For, it surely is a disease; It spreads from one person to another.
   I cannot but think of the good that would be done to us, as a people, and to us, as a nation, if we were to overcome racism. In it lies the seeds of hatred. If you learn to hate black people, you will be more inclined to hate, in general.  In conquering racism, we gravitate more towards being a people who love all and who treats everyone justly. If we, as a society, love black people if we are white people and white people if we are black people, that will translate into individuals being more inclusive and loving in their relations with family, acquaintances and strangers.
   I think of the murders and the mass murders committed by those who hate other races. If we, as a nation, got racism out of our bones, some of this would wear off on those who are inclined to such murders and mass murders.
   I did refer to racism as a disease, did I not? The more it spreads, the more it is likely to infect those who could become inclined to murder.
   So, there is power to lift our nation in overcoming racism.
   You can build the character of your nation by overcoming racism. If we would be a great nation, one of great character, we should aspire to overcoming the racism within us.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Am I a God at Hand, Saith the Lord, and not a God afar off?

  I have mixed religion with politics abundantly the past two weeks, finding answers to political issues in scripture and in gospel principles. I do not think that wrong. If the gospel is true, it applies to all parts of our lives. And, it applies to world problems as well as personal ones.
   I happened upon this scripture tonight. "Am I a God at hand, saith the Lord, and not a God afar off? (Jeremiah 23:23)
   The verse strikes me. I can only wonder if it is saying that God is close and should be relied on for wisdom, and should not made to be far off and apart from the things going on down here on earth.
   But, I also see in this same chapter a warning that I should not suppose to speak on behalf of the Lord. Am I doing that when I suggest what the Lord might have meant in Jeremiah 23:23? A few verses later, in verse 31, it says, "Behold, I am against the prophets, saith the Lord, that use their tongues and say, He saith."
   Am I doing that? Am I using my tongue to say the Lord is saying something?
  I back up one verse, to verse 30, and read, "Therefore, behold, I am against the prophets, saith the Lord, that steal my words everyone from his neighbor." From that, I wonder if He is saying that we sometimes take what others are saying as gospel. We take gossip for gospel. Forgive, but if, our neighbor tells us the First Amendment means we should go out and buy guns, and if the First Amendment is inspired of God, then should we not go out and buy guns? Or is this an example of us stealing from God in that we let the gossip of neighbors define what God is saying? In the words of Jeremiah, we steal God's words, supposing to find them in the things our neighbor tells us.
   Again, not having forgotten verse 31 so quickly, I realize that if it is I who interpret what God is saying, and set it forth as gospel, it is I who am using my tongue and saying it is what "He saith." So, I have a dilemma: I believe it right to apply the scriptures to my life and to our problems, but I do not want to suggest my interpretations are definitely correct, for that would be using my tongue to suggest they are God's words, and He says he is against our doing that.
   And, while it might be wrong to put words in God's mouth, implying that the First Amendment is His injunction that we should go out and buy guns, and while it might be wrong to let our neighbors steal words into God's mouth in this manner, are you any better off listening to my thoughts on what the scriptures might mean? I, too, am nothing but a "neighbor."  Listen to the logic I might offer, but know I am not blind to the fact I can be wrong, and will, at times.
   So, while I wonder -- that is what pondering the scriptures is all about  -- I do not know.
   I return to 23:23. "Am I a God at hand, saith the Lord, and not a God afar of." Again -- giving room that I might be wrong -- I wonder but what we make God a God afar when we do not try to apply His word to our problems, and that includes world problems.
   Jeremiah 23 is largely about false prophets, and it warns against them. But, I wonder if verse 28 suggests that if we do, indeed, have an understanding of God's word, we should speak it, even though there are false prophecies, as well. They (the false prophecies) are like chaff, and the true words are like wheat.
   Says the verse: "The prophet that hath a dream, let him tell a dream; and he that hath my word, let him speak my word faithfully. What is the chaff to the wheat, saith the Lord."
   I am not a prophet, of course, but the second part of that ("he that hath my word") might possibly apply to me. (Forgive, if you suggest I am out of line for that. But, I think we all have a tendency to think we are right, and I am no different.  So, yes, I think it possible I might be understanding God's word, I might have his word, some of the time.) So, "he that hath my word, let him speak my word faithfully." That would then seem to give me an obligation to speak faithfully. I might even should feel I have an obligation to say what I say.
   All this comes in the name of pondering the scriptures, and to likening them to myself. Forgive me if you think I do wrong.

There is that 
which we could call 
the prison of the past.
   We make a mistake, and fail to correct it, and pretty soon we are captured by what we have done, and where we have been, and how we have fallen short. Our past becomes our present, and we let our failures define our future.
   We become prisoners of our past.
   We should learn: Making a mistake is not the bigger fault, failing to correct the mistake is.
Wisdom is not in finding fault in others; 
It is in perceiving and changing our own faults. 
He who would be wise 
realizes it is not others he needs to change, 
but his own self.