Saturday, May 26, 2012

Senator Hatch Ratings Overview

Having listened to and read many claims regarding Senator Hatch’s record I thought I would organize a summary of a number of them so interested parties can easily find the information. I used Project Vote Smart to find those groups with the most recent ratings in the Conservative and Family Issues categories and then recorded the Senator’s ratings as far back as they provided them. Note, the Eagle Forum did not have a rating available for 1999 which is why there is a gap in their rating.

Each organization that rates congress identifies key votes on issues that they care about and uses them to rate members of congress. The rating then reflects how a member of congress performed against a limited set of votes. You can go to each group to find out which votes they considered (I’ve put links to them at the bottom of the post).

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Columbus, Providence, and the Discovery of America by Ron Mann

Bear with me for just one minute and we’ll get to the story. Thanks.

I find it curious that during a decade when when we’ve gone through one crisis after another (the Internet bubble, the real-estate crash, Katrina, 9/11, the financial melt-down of 2008 …) that while a lot of time and money has been spent trying to prevent similar problems in the future, society as a whole hasn’t taken an inward look to see if there are areas where we are off-track that contributed to these problems.

What! you say. How did we contribute to 9/11? We can see from the information that came out following 9/11 that there were a number of warning signs that were missed, not passed on to the right people, or ignored. Why? Could part of the issue be related to pride, an unwillingness to cooperate, and poor legislation which was crafted to protect the power of various departments but restricted cooperation that would have benefited all. The dots were there but no one connected them. We lacked the inspiration to put it all together.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Should Senator Hatch and His Primary Challenger Dan Liljenquist have Multiple Debates?

debateLocally, there have been a lot of discussions lately regarding whether or not the two primary candidates for one of Utah’s two Senate seats should have multiple debates prior to the primary election. The sitting Senator has agreed to one radio debate sometime the week before the election sometime between 9 AM and 12 PM. There has been a lot of energetic discussion on Facebook and in other online forums. I think much of the dialog misses the major point entirely.

I sent a short letter to the editor of Deseret News today on the subject. Not sure if it will be published so I thought I’d share it with you. But before that let me share a sampling of the online commentary so you can get a feel for the passion on both sides.:

Monday, May 14, 2012

Integrity by General Charles C. Krulak, USMC retired

General Charles C. Krulak, USMC General Krulak (former Commandant of the Marine Corps) was the keynote speaker at the Joint Services Conference on Professional Ethics (JSCOPE) 2000. JSCOPE is now known as the International Society for Military Ethics (ISME). They have met annually since 1979 to discuss ethics, values, leadership … .

General Krulak’s January 27, 2000 keynote address is timeless and an ever needed reminder of the importance of integrity. This characteristic is essential for those we select to serve as leaders, whether in business, government, or private organizations. It is vital that those who serve maintain their integrity or like Rome our nation, business, or group will rot from within and fall prey to those who seek its demise.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

My Miracle and Hopefully Yours

I wrote the the following poem for my wife years ago and rededicate it to my wonderful companion this Mother’s Day. A better mother for our children does not exist. I hope everyone I know thinks the same about their companion.

Sunset on Wailea Maui

My Miracle

As it touches the edge of the world
the sun explodes
sending thousands of glowing particles through the air
Clouds burst into flame
and then slowly fade away.

The sea flickers as if covered with golden sequins.

Men cry because beauty is gone,
yearn for days gone by,
doubt God’s existence
and seek for a miracle.

Happiness lies not in the past,
nor is it hidden in the future.

Look, and miracles blossom all around.
Listen and God speaks.
.Be thankful and blessings abound.

You are my miracle!

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

“Give Me Liberty!” by Ron Mann

The following short speech on freedom and liberty by my father, Ron Mann, is appropriate for today’s world, although it was written over 10 years ago.

Patrick Henry delivering his great speechPatrick Henry gave his most famous speech on March 23, 1775, in Richmond, Virginia, where he argued to mobilize for military action against the British – at the time the members of the 2nd Virginia Convention were undecided on this matter. Thomas Marshall, who was present at this speech, gave utterance to the unanimous verdict of all who heard it, when he described it “as one of the most bold, vehement, and animated pieces of eloquence that had ever been delivered.” Indeed it was so powerful that it consolidated all the forces in attendance to military resistance against the Crown.

Friday, May 4, 2012

A “Positive” Observation about Christ by Norman Vincent Peale

The Power of Positive ThinkingI recently started re-reading The Power of Positive Thinking, which should be on everyone’s must read. In the foreword of the 2008 edition Pastor Robert Schuller shares a story from 1957 when he introduced its author, Norman Vincent Peale, a guest speaker to his congregation.

Dr. Schuller relates the following story:

It was time to introduce our guest. Before I knew what I was saying, I heard the following words come out of my mouth. “We have with us today the greatest positive thinker who has ever lived. His words have been heard and read by millions of people all over the world. He has changed more lives than can be counted. The greatest positive thinker who ever lived is here—with us—today!. In person! His name is … Jesus Christ! and here to tell us all about him is Dr. Norman Vincent Peale.’”

Dr. Peale was surprised, I could see.

With his arms moving in sync, Dr. Peale boomed out, “If Jesus Christ were here today, would He tell you what a lost sinner you are?”

I nodded my head.

He continued, “Would He tell you how bad you are, how you’ve failed?”

Again I nodded in agreement.

Then he shocked me by shouting, “I don’t think so! Deep down in your heart you already know that: you already know just what your most grievous sins are!”

Then he peered out across this great multitude, made the most of a dramatic pause. “Jesus Christ never told anyone he was a sinner.”

After Dr. Peale’s sermon Dr. Schuller rushed home and grabbed his Bible looking to prove that this statement was incorrect. However he states:

I found that Dr. Peale had been right! What I didn’t find was a single place where Jesus had called any person a sinner!

As I reread the words of Jesus, I discovered that He focused not on people’s weaknesses but on their strengths, not on their short-comings but on their possibilities, not on their failures but on their successes!

Wouldn’t the world be a better place if we emulated that example. If you haven’t read Dr. Peale’s book I would encourage you do so. You’ll find it inspiring and especially appropriate for the world in which we live today.