The Calm In The Eye Of The Storm…

ISOA Banner  Anyone who has experienced a hurricane knows that in the middle of the storm there is a point of almost complete calm when the eye of the hurricane passes over. Being that our national elections are tomorrow I thought it appropriate to try and write a calming post here today.  To do that I went all the way back to my 1976 mountain hiking in Colorado and my honeymoon in Maui Hawaii in 1986.

Click on any picture above to see a larger slideshow view

The first two are of the time I and a buddy hiked up to a mountain top lake at  14,000 feet in Colorado and spent the night in a tent. It was probably the most peaceful in my life. The night time air was super crisp, the water was near freezing, and the night time sky was beyond imagination.

The rest of the pictures are from Maui Hawaii.  If these don’t calm you down a little then maybe you need a tall glass of Jack Danial’s… maybe both..

Hang on, it will soon be over….

When They Go Low, You Go High…

2016-10-29_07-48-59.pngI guess this will be my last post for a while about melding your religion and your politics into one bag.  To me it is the same thing as mixing horse manure and ice cream. It doesn’t hurt the manure but it sure does stink up the ice cream!  (I wish I knew the source for this thought as I would give them credit.)  No political party is worthy of our allegiance, that belongs totally to our Lord. I use the Red Letter Living quote below to illustrate that fact:

We do truly stand at a crossroads, a crossroad of the soul. In the time of crisis we have a choice to make. Will we sink to justifying hurt to protect our self interest, or will we rise to show grace, mercy, and goodness in the middle of all the ugliness and fear? In that sense the gospel is deeply personal, but it is not only personal, but also social and political. The central message Jesus preached was the “kingdom of God” ― a term whose meaning is perhaps better conveyed today as “God’s politics” that is, God’s way of organizing life together. The values and way Jesus showed us do not stop when we get to the political or public sphere. They are not intended to be tossed aside when things get tough. As Jesus says on the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew’s Gospel,

You’re familiar with the old written law, ‘Love your friend,’ and its unwritten companion, ‘Hate your enemy.’ I’m challenging that. I’m telling you to love your enemies. Let them bring out the best in you, not the worst. When someone gives you a hard time, respond with the energies of prayer, for then you are working out of your true selves, your God-created selves.

This is what God does. He gives his best—the sun to warm and the rain to nourish—to everyone, regardless: the good and bad, the nice and nasty. If all you do is love the lovable, do you expect a bonus? Anybody can do that. If you simply say hello to those who greet you, do you expect a medal? Any run-of-the-mill sinner does that.

In a word, what I’m saying is, Grow up. You’re kingdom subjects. Now live like it. Live out your God-created identity. Live generously and graciously toward others, the way God lives toward you.” (Mt 5:43-48, MSG)

Speaking from a time of crisis himself, Matthew has an important message that we need to hear today in our time of crisis. He calls us to respond in the way of Jesus, a way characterized by grace, forgiveness, and enemy love. When they go low, you go high.

Source: Trump, Jesus, & America’s Crisis – Red Letter Christians

We have a choice in this election between two very different presidential candidates. Now I will admit that neither is without fault but one just seems to be the opposite of my spiritual beliefs and the words above. I would no more consider him for president than I would mix my ice cream with horse manure…

The George W. Bush White House ‘Lost’ 22 Million Emails

Thank heavens that this political savagery will finally be over in less than 50 days.  I have almost given up on reading or watching any news sources as they are totally flooded with Mr. Trump and his malicious rhetoric.  Hillary using a private email is one of the main topics for ages now.  If you are one of those who doesn’t see this a purely political then the quote below if for you;

Clinton’s email habits look positively transparent when compared with the subpoena-dodging, email-hiding, private-server-using George W. Bush administration. Between 2003 and 2009, the Bush White House “lost” 22 million emails. This correspondence included millions of emails written during the darkest period in America’s recent history, when the Bush administration was ginning up support for what turned out to be a disastrous war in Iraq with false claims that the country possessed weapons of mass destruction (WMD), and, later, when it was firing U.S. attorneys for political reasons.Like Clinton, the Bush White House used a private email server—its was owned by the Republican National Committee. And the Bush administration failed to store its emails, as required by law, and then refused to comply with a congressional subpoena seeking some of those emails. “It’s about as amazing a double standard as you can get,” says Eric Boehlert, who works with the pro-Clinton group Media Matters. “If you look at the Bush emails, he was a sitting president, and 95 percent of his chief advisers’ emails were on a private emailsystem set up by the RNC. Imagine if for the last year and a half we had been talking about Hillary Clinton’s emails set up on a private DNC server?”

Source: The George W. Bush White House ‘Lost’ 22 Million Emails

It just amazes me how Bush/Cheney administration got by doing mostly illegal stuff with no admonishment from congress or other agencies.  It is indeed a double standard when it comes to GOP representatives.

I am thinking seriously of just stopping all my news sources until November 9th. I don’t need the agony in my life right now. On that day Mr. Trump will go back to his casino empire and leave the serious stuff to the real people.

With all the voting stuff being changed by my very red State I am also looking to do an absentee ballot this year for the first time in my life. For Primary day this year I had to wait in the voting line for over an hour because of the changes they have made.  I imagine that the wait will exceed 3 hours this coming election. Up until now I have never had to wait more than 10 minutes where I live now.

Being a responsibly citizen of this country sure takes a lot more work than it used to…

To The Regulators….

I am one of those who believes that our government has a very important role in our society. It seems human nature to be self serving before anything else now. To seek common good is above and beyond what happens in society.

We may well hit the next financial crisis before the regulatory response to the last one is fully implemented. Why? Legal scholars finger a culprit called “regulatory ossification,” referring to the grinding slowness of today’s federal rule-writing apparatus — largely because regulatory agencies are strangled by endless paperwork and frivolous lawsuits.

tightrope_1ahkxtwFully tackling this problem will probably require congressional action. Luckily, there are many things a president can do to partially alleviate the problem. Since she’s looking increasingly likely to take the White House, Hillary Clinton would be well advised to start taking this problem seriously.

One of the finest pieces of policy journalism ever written is “He Who Makes the Rules,” by Haley Sweetland Edwards. It’s an in-depth look at the bureaucratic trench warfare that causes the years-long delays in rulemaking. Laws like Dodd-Frank generally don’t contain specific regulations saying what must happen; instead they instruct federal agencies to write rules within specific parameters, with the overall process governed by the 1946 Administrative Procedure Act.

As Elizabeth Warren pointed out in a recent speech, what is needed is someone with the opposite view — that regulations are a huge net benefit that are absolutely critical to protecting the American economy and citizenry. Slow-walking regulation of finance or climate change with onerous cost-benefit nitpicking when Wall Street just obliterated the economy and American cities are suffering clockwork weather disasters is completely idiotic.So given that Republicans stand a good chance of hanging onto Congress, if Hillary Clinton wants to achieve anything during her presidency, appointing people who believe in quality government to key regulatory posts might be the single smartest and easiest step she could take.

Source: How to make big government agile again

Regulating our free enterprise system is critical to keeping our citizens in control of our government. Without regulations the greed endemic in a capitalist system would quickly get out of control.  Just look at late 2008 for evidence of that.

Elizabeth Warren is one of my few political heroes now. She thoroughly understands this important duty. Given the current GOP “stall everything” approach to government many of the regulations that have been passed because of the 2008 meltdown are still ery slow to be implemented.

Public servants, especially at the lower level, get little recognition and support by our citizenry but they do a gargantuan job of reigning in corporate greed and bringing some level of compassion into our way of handling wealth.  Often times they are outnumbered 50 to 1 by those in corporate America.  I don’t know how they accomplish what they do.

Thank you for your service….