Wednesday, March 31, 2010
These two bloggers make it tough to write on Christian topics as they grab hold of their subjects with vigor and polish. Excellent writing. Check them out when you get the chance, you'll learn something and really enjoy yourself.
Note: In addition, Blessed Economist has an excellent blogroll that links to many other interesting and informative sites. One site of note is KingdomWatcher's series on Christian Economics.
Sunday, March 28, 2010
Note: And buy his book Grave Influences. It is an insightful read.
Thursday, March 25, 2010
Jealousy and Envy: The Christian and the State
My Fellow Christians:
I am a jealous father. As such, I will not allow the state to steal the hearts of my children. And I will not allow the state to raise them for its purposes. So I homeschool.
Am I wrong in my jealousy?
Our brother Paul was jealous, and so is our Father. I will let their words speak for them:As Paul wrote to the church at Corinth, he is "jealous over you with godly jealousy." (2Cor. 11:2) But they were not envious – they despised (God still despises) envy. Again, letting their words speak for them:
As God spoke to Moses, "For thou shalt worship no other god: for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God" (Exo. 34:14)"Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers" (Rom. 1:29)
"Therefore, as I live, saith the Lord GOD, I will even do according to thine anger, and according to thine envy which thou hast used out of thy hatred against them" (Eze 35:11a )
While jealousy can be godly, we are to despise envy, always. 
Today we tend to use the terms jealousy and envy interchangeably. But the Bible sets those two words apart. So what is the difference between them?
According to Helmut Schoek, in his excellent book, Envy: A Theory of Social Behaviour, "[T]he jealous man can never normally become a spontaneous, primary aggressor." The jealous man only seeks to protect that which he rightfully possesses from the hands of his rivals – those striving to obtain those very same assets. So the jealous man’s "mind is at rest once he knows that he is free of rivals."
The envious man expresses a more hostile set of emotions. Throughout his book, Schoek delves into the heart of the envious man. He clearly shows that set of emotions to be evil and destructive. Seductive, yes. But oh so vile.
According to Schoek, the envious man "usually knows exactly what provokes him." But the object of his envy "may actually be ignorant of his existence." The envious man wants something that is not rightfully his. And his heart is always filled with spite, as nothing, not even the destruction of the object of his envy, will set his mind to rest.
In simpler terms, the jealous man wants to keep his own possession while the envious man wants the possessions that someone else rightfully owns.
Paul and God expressed jealousy. Both sought (God still seeks) to protect hearts from their rivals – the gods of this earth. And both desired (God still desires) to see souls won for the Kingdom.
Therefore, jealousy is the favored set of emotions. It is not evil, nor is it vile. 
However, we are a people who have turned from jealousy toward envy. We have become the primary aggressors, using the power of the state to obtain possession of the rightful assets of others. And we many times we do this in the name of God.
So we advocate for the redistribution of wealth. We ask the state to tax those who possess more than we possess in order to fulfill (or so we think) our mission to help the poor. But, as James warns, "For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work." (Jas. 3:16)
Is that not our world today?
Paul asked, "Do we provoke the Lord to jealousy? are we stronger than he?" (1Cor. 10:22)
We dare not provoke God to jealousy by turning away from Him. So why would we dare provoke jealousy in others by using the power of the gun to take from them that which is rightfully theirs And why would we invite the wrath of God on ourselves "according to thine envy?"
Many claim that stealing with a good intent (can that be possible?) is a godly action. But as Paul wrote, "Thou therefore which teachest another, teachest thou not thyself? thou that preachest a man should not steal, dost thou steal? (Rom. 2:21)
Do we not also preach "thou shall not steal?" Turning around, do we then pull the lever on the ballot box, setting in motion various acts of theft? Do we advocate for state interventions that take from others? And do we really believe that one can only steal from those who are less fortunate than we are – as if those more fortunate can find no protection under the word of God?
When we embrace a system of envy, we also ignite the fires of sin that exist in hearts of all men. We end up pushing our fellow believers – and unbelievers – farther from the spirit of the Lord. In essence, we fan the flames of all those sins Paul noted above, including unrighteousness, wickedness, murder, deceit, etc.
Instead of winning heart for heaven, we condemn souls to our envious ways. Is this to be our epitaph?
It is time that Christians turn away from envy and embrace jealousy. We should actively keep watch over that which we hold dear – whether it is our property or the hearts of our children. And we should despise a system of government that seeks to take from one and give to another – a system of government that is both based on envy and controlled by the envious. There is nothing godly about such a system.
1. All Bible quotes are from the King James Version, available at BibleGateWay.com – a wonderful resource.
2. In addition, the envious man may simply want the object of his envy to not be allowed to possess some asset that that man currently possesses. In essence, the envious man is willing to be harm himself as long as the object of his envy is harmed also. Ludwig von Mises called this the Fourier complex.
3. Due to his sinful nature, man can take jealousy too far and desire to hold onto his worldly possessions in lieu of his heavenly ones. But it does not follow that the state must thieve his earthly possession – it is a matter of the heart, not the possessions, that is the issue. And theft is always theft, regardless of the rationale behind it.
March 15, 2010
Jim Fedako is a homeschooling father of seven who lives in Lewis Center, OH, and maintains a blog: Anti-Positivist.
Copyright © 2010 LewRockwell.com
Tuesday, March 23, 2010
The Republicans will do the very same as the Democrats when back in power -- they will turn their backs on liberty and continue building the omnipotent, omniscient and omnipresent state.
Sunday, March 21, 2010
This is the reason soldiers are dying in foreign lands -- to force democracy on the rest of the world. And what has this vaunted democracy gotten us? Socialism.
We used to be a republic based on a constrained state. But we have changed into an empire based on an ever-increasing state.
Here is what I say to all those Republicans who supported Bush's wars: Do not question the outcome of a democratic vote on health care. Because if you do, you will be turning your backs on the soldiers fighting for your beloved democracy -- the unconstrained tyranny of the majority.
For those who desire supposedly free health care: Don't come crying to me when your beloved state denies you the same.
Is this the end of the experiment in liberty that began some 235 years ago?
Saturday, March 20, 2010
Zanotti is referring to the day that Obama came to speak in Cleveland. In a scene reminiscent of elections in Jamaica (where I served as a Peace Corps volunteer in the early 90's), the president and his armed guard and gangs of union thugs hit the town for a scripted event.
To think there was a time when anyone could knock on the door of the White House and expect to receive a welcoming response. Of course, that was early in our Republic, before we became an empire -- an empire that is now following Rome's road to ruin.
Read Zanotti's article (below) and join him in Polaris this Tuesday (RSVP with American Policy Roundtable beforehand).
What were you doing when America died?
For the Light of Liberty we remain,
Friday, March 19, 2010
Best of all is this Jim Hofstetter. As an employee at the Loft Violin Shop in Powell, ol' Jim stands to lose some big cash now that the district has reduced its strings program. So Jim is working to steal our money ... and he is open about it.
Jim, have you no shame?
Some real pieces of work, these SOS folks.
Thursday, March 18, 2010
Note: I assume Galloway was still licking his wounds from the thrashing his party gave him. How can he even show his face anymore?
The pertinent section:
Finally, Feasel shared an update related to Ohio Senate Bill (SB) 210 and House Bill (HB) 373, also known as the Childhood Obesity Bill. Feasel is anticipating amendments to the bills next week that would require school districts to increase their daily requirements for rigorous activity for all high school students to 30 minutes per day. In addition, the bills would require school districts to track their students’ body mass index (BMI) and report the results to the Ohio Department of Health. The results would also be included in the Ohio Department of Education’s annual academic report card for each district. Feasel said she is not against gym classes, but does not want another state requirement that does not provide appropriate funding for the district. (emphasis mine)
Tuesday, March 16, 2010
Exhibitionists for the State
On Monday night, I took two of my children to the Judge Napolitano/Ron Paul evening at the Ohio State University (a fantastic evening, by the way). During one of the segments, Napolitano asked a panel of young folks how they would respond to this common defense of the ever-more intrusive state:
Judge (paraphrased): What would you say to someone who says, "What do I care, I have nothing to hide?"
After mulling this over, if ever asked that very same question, my response is now: I do have stuff to hide. That's why I close bathroom doors, pull bedroom blinds and wear clothes. And no one (save my wife) has any business in any area I declare to be private (including my property and areas where I have contracted with others to keep my private stuff private). The state and its agents included.
Napolitano’s question is an important one. The "I have nothing to hide" response is used time and again by folks who I now see as exhibitionists – exhibitionists for the state. These folks see nothing wrong with opening their private lives to the state – they have nothing to hide.
So the very same folks who pull their blinds to keep the leering eyes of their neighbors out of their bedrooms open those very same blinds to those very same neighbors when they (their neighbors) act as agents of the state. And those folks do so as if a state badge transforms their neighbors into something other than voyeurs – as if the badge makes it all OK.
But the badge is only a sign that the power of force is standing behind the one wearing it, and leering. It should be a point of real concern, not security.
Look, if I left my bathroom door open, you would certainly think me odd. Wouldn’t you wonder why I want to expose my private matters to the world?
I could say, "Since I am not committing a crime, I have nothing to hide."
Would you buy that line? Would you simply shrug off my actions? Would you feel safer in the presence of someone so open about his peaceful intentions? Would you?
I wear clothes for a number of reasons, with protecting my privacy at the top of the list. Yet I am forced to virtual strip before ogling TSA agents as if I have nothing to hide. But that is the very reason I dressed to begin with.
I desire to hide from my neighbors acting as neighbors, as well as my neighbors acting as agents of the state. I desire to hide.
There are inane responses to questions regarding state interventions. But the "I have nothing to hide" response is the most inane of them all. You have something to hide. We all do. And what we hide is our own business – it is personal.
The next time some exhibitionist for the state claims they have nothing to hide, call them on it. And hopefully they will learn a little lesson.
March 11, 2010Jim Fedako is a homeschooling father of seven who lives in Lewis Center, OH, and maintains a blog: Anti-Positivist.
Copyright © 2010 LewRockwell.com
Saturday, March 13, 2010
From the township trustees' agenda for Monday March 15, 2010
Regular Meeting (excerpt)
8) Public Safety Report
5) Republic Builders LLC. $10,993.00: Kitchen Remodel at Station 362
Friday, March 12, 2010
Since you believe the state has the right to perform Body Mass Index calculations on students and then badger their parents (S. B. No. 210), I figure you would gladly share your BMI with your constituents.
Please reply with your BMI so that I may see if you are fit enough to continue as the senate's chief nanny do-gooder (you do appear a little pudgy in your photo).
Keep in mind that the only waist you should be poking is your own.
Note: John, send your BMI also. It appears that your need for power is expanding with your beltline. By the way, how do you differ from the Progressives on the Left? Remind me.
Wednesday, March 10, 2010
Now for the The Law of Unintended Consequences. Just like salmon, sea lions come in different models. Two of which are California sea lions and Stellar sea lions. California sea lions are a dime a dozen, but the Stellar sea lions, just like the chinook salmon, are blessed with the protection of the Endangered Species Act, and they are just as hungry as their cousins.
What to do? One Endangered Species is eating another Endangered Species. You can’t shoot the sea lions, and you also can’t not let them eat the salmon, but then you can’t let the salmon be eaten.
What a predicament!
Sunday, March 07, 2010
Why limit the reach of your editorial to just the Second Amendment when there are nine more to rewrite("Rule wisely," March 7, 2010)?
To help you along, I'll write the next editorial for you (tongue in cheek).
"Anytown sits next to a troublesome suburb and absorbs their words of liberty and freedom. Unfortunately, the Supreme Court appears unlikely to step away from its activist interpretation of the First Amendment as a right held by the individual. And a ruling against Anytown repeats the idea that the right of speech applies nationwide.
A group of government officials urging the court to prevent such a travesty wisely noted that 'the First Amendment was written to protect the states from redress of its citizens' and that 'it makes no sense to incorporate the right of speech against the states.'
What is particularly disturbing are the accidental effects of free speech, especially with regard to children.
How do the justices of the nation's highest court presume to know what local speech ordinances are best for maintaining law and order on the streets of America's highly diverse cities?"
There you are. Two down and eight to go.
Saturday, March 06, 2010
Hanks employer communicated with firms with county ties
By ANDREW TOBIAS
A local engineering firm that formerly employed Delaware County commissioner Todd Hanks communicated with two businesses with ties to the Delaware County government while Hanks worked for them as a marketing consultant, e-mails obtained through a public records request show.
One e-mail shows local engineering firm Civil and Environmental Consultants knew about a controversial proposed waste-to-energy project before the public or all the members of the board of commissioners say they did.
On June 1, CEC geologist John DiNunzio e-mailed information about a proposed federal legislation to fund waste-to-energy projects to three executives with Viridis Waste Control Inc., DiNunzio’s e-mail contains little else, other than the subject line “The wheels are starting to turn” and the phrase “FYI.” Hanks was copied at his CEC address on the e-mail.
CEC employed Hanks as a marketing consultant from January 2009 to October 2009. He received a $1,900 biweekly salary plus a potential commission to refer business to CEC.
At the time DiNunzio sent the e-mail, the county was in negotiations to hire Viridis, and Hanks later introduced a motion to award the Dublin-based company a $3.13 million no-bid contract facility in Delaware County.
Hours after the e-mail was sent, county commissioners met in a closed-door session with the same Viridis executives to discuss as a board the potential of hiring the company for the first time.
Commissioner Ken O’Brien has said that meeting was the first he’d heard of the project.
Hours after the commissioners meeting, Hanks forwarded the e-mail to county economic development director Gus Comstock, making it a public record.
The project was not discussed publicly until more than two weeks later, when Hanks introduced the contract, under which Viridis would have independently hired subcontractors to perform engineering work and other services pertaining to the study.
Later that month, Hanks and commissioner Tommy Thompson voted to award the contract, with O’Brien voting against. However, county auditor George Kaitsa refused to certify the contract because the county didn’t have enough money to pay for it. Hanks switched his vote three days later, killing the project.
Hanks and Thompson have since said the contract was intended to be paid for through a federal grant. CEC has expertise in the waste-to-energy field; the company is included on a federal Environmental Protection Agency Web site listing potential vendors for projects like the one detailed in the $3.13 million contract. Viridis is also on the same list.
When asked about the email, Hanks said he didn’t remember if he had talked to CEC about the waste-to-energy project or Viridis. He also said he couldn’t speculate why he would have been copied on DiNunzio’s e-mail, or how they knew about the project.
DiNunzio did not return messages seeking comment.
Another e-mail shows that Hanks attempted to bring a CEC representative with him to a meeting with a Delaware County business that had an open county contract.
A June 11 e-mail from Hanks shows he, Comstock, and a CEC employee were to meet with two executives with manufacturer Sky Climber to discuss potential locations of wind turbines, an industry Sky Climber and CEC are both involved with. The meeting fell through, however, after Hanks dropped out over a scheduling conflict.
At the time, Sky Climber had an outstanding county contract for $7,500, awarded in 2008 by the previous board of commissioners, to provide services through a work development program for the county’s department of jobs and family services.
No county money was awarded to Sky Climber through the contract. Hanks and other county commissioners voted to de-fund the contract in September and October.
When asked about the proposed meeting with Sky Climber, Hanks said he “couldn’t speculate about a meeting that never happened.”
The Ohio Ethics Commission has said Hanks’ former employment with CEC was theoretically legal as long as he observed ethics laws.
The commission didn’t address specific actions Hanks may have taken. Public officials are allowed to hold private sector jobs, but they are required under Ohio ethics laws to clearly separate their private work from their public office.
When asked, the OEC said they can’t comment on any information for this story or any specific situation. But, OEC chairman David Freel said: “Ethics law prohibits representatives a public official from taking action or using the resources of their authority on behalf of their employer or someone with whom they have an ongoing business relationship.”
Sources have told the Gazette that another meeting that Hanks, Comstock and CEC representatives attended may have created the potential for a conflict of interest.
Geoffrey Mearns, dean of the Cleveland State University Marshall College of Law and a formal federal prosecutor, has previously told the Gazette Hanks’ actions at the meeting made it confusing about whether he was representing the county or CEC.
As previously reported, Hanks invited two CEC representatives to a pair of May 2009 meetings between county officials and other area government officials to
redevelop the former Nestle plant in Sunbury.
Hanks told the Gazette at the time he brought the CEC employees to make business introductions, in accordance with his private job description.
The plant’s landowner has since told Sunbury officials he has hired CEC to work on the project. Comstock has also helped with the redevelopment process and has discussed the possibility of awarding the project revolving loan funds, which are administered by the county commissioners.
Mearns has previously told the Gazette he could not comment on what the law says about Hanks’ actions at the meeting.
But, Mearns said: “We should hold our public officials to a higher ethical standard than “Is this conduct illegal?”
Hanks recently announced he would not seek his first elected term. In a written statement, he said his wife and three young children had been “attacked” on the Internet.
Wednesday, March 03, 2010
Your tax dollars at work.
Monday, March 01, 2010
Romans 13 and Anarcho-Capitalism
Consider this situation: You saved for years to go on a cruise of the Caribbean. It is not just the sights and sounds or the fun and food, it is the chance to sail the open seas. You have dreamed a sailor’s dream: to face the dare and danger of a storm racing across the open deck. And you want to hear the wind in the wires make that tattletale sound as the waves break over the railing. Yes, you want an Edmund Fitzgerald experience of sorts, but with buffets and entertainment, a warm shower and soft bed, and a happy and safe return to port.
OK. You really want to feel a slight storm blow across the deck. Nothing too scary. Just a little excitement to breakup the doldrums of suburban life.
On the evening of your second night, a storm approaches. The crew begins asking passengers to head inside for the safety of shelter. You hesitate. This is your once-in-a-lifetime cruise and your only chance to feel the power and bite of the wind and rain coming from that storm which is now creating a tiny tempest in an otherwise calm sea. You know you could easily slip past the crewmembers without detection and live that dream by the edge of the windward railing. But you are a Christian. So what should you do?
If I were in that situation, I would simply head inside. As a Christian, I am to follow the governing authorities – I am to place my obedience to God over my desires to witness the storm firsthand. The captain and his designees are responsible for protecting the lives of all onboard. I am not to resist them. They are not to be feared, nor are they a terror to good conduct. And even if I can evade their authority, for the sake of my conscience, I am to obey their instructions.
This is significant. Why? It shows that the instructions given by Paul in Romans 13 extend beyond a Christian’s interactions with the state. And it shows that the existence of government is not required to fulfill the intent of the chapter. More importantly, it shows that Christianity and anarcho-capitalism can coexist.
When I am in a store and I see a door with a sign that reads, "Employees only," I do not enter. Not because entering would break some law. I do not enter because the governing authority of that store has said that I am not to enter. And I am called to obey and not resist the authority of the store owner. Just as I am called to obey the rules of my neighbor when I am on his property or in his house.
A world without the state would never be a world without authority. Paul wrote to the Christians of Rome during the Roman Empire, the reign of the Caesars. However, since the Bible is truth through eternity, Paul’s instructions are true regardless the form of governing authority. We are to obey those who govern our various situations: my neighbor on his property, the security guard at the mall, and the shopkeeper in his store. And as God has arranged all, he has arranged matters so that each ruler is to be a minister of God, within his individual realm.
However, as Christians, no earthly law can exceed the word of God. When the two clash, God always wins. And when the governing authority extends its reach beyond its defined role, it has become an enemy of God. This is true whether the ruler is Caesar or a group of neighbors acting as the local junta that is democracy. And it is even true when the ruler is the captain of the ship or the owner of the store, or your neighbor in his backyard.
We are to render unto Caesar that which is Caesar’s. This will also be true under anarcho-capitalism as we will have to render unto the property owner that which he is due. But we will only have to render as we see fit, based on where we chose to go.
As Christians, we are to obey the legitimate governing authority, but it does not follow that the authority must be the state. Paul’s instructions are the same no matter who is in charge. And in an anarcho-capitalist world, we would only be forced to obey the governing authorities whose properties we chose to enter.
A better world, indeed.
Jim Fedako is a homeschooling father of seven who lives in Lewis Center, OH, and maintains a blog: Anti-Positivist.
Copyright © 2010 LewRockwell.com