Politics/United States

“Many in the 1850’s also considered themselves “pro-choice” rather than “pro-slavery”. History repeats itself…”  (Obianuju Ekeocha  Twitter@obianuju)

In other words, I am personally against slavery, but I think people (or the states) should have the freedom to choose.

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Solzhenhitsyn on “Group-think Control”

by Steve Ray on August 17, 2019

This episode is in Alexandr Solzhenitsyn’s Gulag Archipelago, Vol. 1.  It shows the stupidity and mind control that totalitarian, socialist and intolerant governments and groups can impose upon people. It shows what can happen if we move toward socialism and Communism in our country with the liberals and the Far Left pushing their agenda aScreen Shot 2019-08-17 at 6.49.57 AMnd being very vocal about it.

If you haven’t read Solzhenitsyn you should acquaint yourself with him. He was a devout Russian Orthodox Christian. Start with his One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich which won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1970. It is a short novel but very powerful.

The episode below from his Gulag Archipelago fascinated me so I decided to share it with you.

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Here is one vignette from those years as it actually occurred. A district Party conference was underway in Moscow Province. It was presided over by a new secretary of the District Party Committee, replacing one recently arrested. At the conclusion of the conference, a tribute to Comrade Stalin was called for.

_83277500_gettyimages-2635490Of course, everyone stood up (just as everyone had leaped to his feet during the conference at every mention of his name). The small hall echoed with “stormy applause, rising to an ovation.” For three minutes, four minutes, five minutes, the “stormy applause, rising to an ovation,” continued.

But palms were getting sore and raised arms were already aching. And the older people were panting from exhaustion. It was becoming insufferably silly even to those who really adored Stalin. However, who would dare be the first to stop?

The secretary of the District Party Committee could have done it. He was standing on the platform, and it was he who had just called for the ovation. But he was a newcomer. He had taken the place of a man who’d been arrested. He was afraid! After all, NKVD men were standing in the hall applauding and watching to see who quit first! And in that obscure, small hall, unknown to the Leader, the applause went on —six, seven, eight minutes! They were done for! Their goose was cooked! They couldn’t stop now till they collapsed with heart attacks!

gettyimages-104048816-640x640At the rear of the hall, which was crowded, they could of course cheat a bit, clap less frequently, less vigorously, not so eagerly—but up there with the presidium where everyone could see them? The director of the local paper factory, an independent and strong-minded man, stood with the presidium. Aware of all the falsity and all the impossibility of the situation, he still kept on applauding! Nine minutes! Ten! In anguish he watched the secretary of the District Party Committee, but the latter dared not stop. Insanity! To the last man!

With make-believe enthusiasm on their faces, looking at each other with faint hope, the district leaders were just going to go on and on applauding till they fell where they stood, till they were carried out of the hall on stretchers! And even then those who were left would not falter. . . .

Then, after eleven minutes, the director of the paper factory assumed a businesslike expression and sat down in his seat. And, oh, a miracle took place! Where had the universal, uninhibited, indescribable enthusiasm gone? To a man, everyone else stopped dead and sat down. They had been saved! The squirrel had been smart enough to jump off his revolving wheel.

That, however, was how they discovered who the independent people were. And that was how they went about eliminating them. That same night the factory director was arrested. They easily pasted ten years on him on the pretext of something quite different. But after he had signed Form 206, the final document of the interrogation, his interrogator reminded him:

“Don’t ever be the first to stop applauding!”

  Solzhenitsyn, Aleksandr I. The Gulag Archipelago Part I (NY: Harper & Row, Publ., 1974), 69-70.

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Steve’s Comment: With another election looming in our near future – and a hotly contested one it will be, it is good to know why we do not have elections based on popular vote but on the time-proven wisdom of our Founding Fathers and their implementation of the Electoral College. Here is a simple primer which all of us should understand.

The Electoral College Still Makes Sense Because We’re Not A Democracy

What appears to deprive the populace of its power to decide a president is the very mechanism that preserves its power. The Electoral College works that way because the United States isn’t a pure democracy.
The Electoral College has been on life support since a chad—specifically a “hanging” chad—tipped the White House to George W. Bush in 2000. The painful reality of how our Constitution works was never more apparent. The Gore/Lieberman ticket won the popular vote 50,994,086 to 50,461,092 but lost the electoral vote 266 to 271.

There was a lot more to it, but the punchline is that the U.S. Supreme Court ruled Bush the winner because he won the electoral vote. It’s a tribute to the American national character that we weathered that cataclysm without civil war, but it left a bad taste in the electorate’s mouth.

 During the 2016 Republican primary, when it looked as if Donald Trump would win the popular vote but still not reach the delegate threshold for nomination, that bad taste turned sour. Riding high on populism and “throw the bums out,” Trump complained that the election was rigged because the people wanted him, and whomever the people wanted, they should get.
Fortunately for the country, Trump reached the delegate threshold, and we were spared a debacle that would have made 2000’s cataclysm look like a lemonade stand.

Cue the national election. No controversy, scandal, “info dump,” lie, corruption, defection, or dirty trick has been left unturned. Why would election night go smoothly? Frankly, the plane is going down no matter who wins; it’s only a question of water or land and how many survivors there will be. Chances aren’t looking good for the Electoral College.

“This is a democracy,” the people cry. “It should be one person-one vote, and that stupid Electoral College needs to go!” Poor Electoral College. So misunderstood. If the Electoral College has to go, it has to go, but we should at least buy it dinner first. While we’re at it, we might as well get to know it better.

Trust History: You Don’t Want Mob Rule

The sad lot of the Electoral College is that what you see isn’t what you get. Like the counter-intuitive fact that a tire blowout on the right requires a steering wheel correction to the left, the EC works backwards. What appears to deprive the populace of its power to decide a president is the very mechanism that preserves its power. It works that way because this isn’t a democracy; not a pure one.

 “Pure democracy” is just another phrase for “mob rule.” Dictatorship of the majority means 51 percent of the citizenry rule the other 49 percent. That minority has no rights except those the condescending majority grants. It works well for those in the 51 percent, not so much for those in the 49. Plato knew it, and James Madison, who knew his Plato, did too. Plato and Madison both recognized that justice and liberty for the minority is possible only when power is shared between groups in society.

Plato’s “Republic” heavily influenced Madison and the other framers to devise a Constitution that protected the minority. Plato held that the ideal, i.e., just, form of government was one in which power was shared correctly between workers, warriors, and rulers. Madison held that the ideal, i.e., American, form of government was one in which power was shared correctly between judges, lawmakers, and rulers.

Inspired as it is, our Constitution protects the minority while preserving the best of democracy: we the people elect representatives to run the government (republic) and we do so by majority vote (democracy). Ergo, this is a democratic republic. Ergo, an Electoral College.

The Electoral College Balances Voting Power

The purpose of the Electoral College is to balance voting power across states so no one region of the country can gain too much control. If a president is elected by a simple majority of votes, a candidate who is wildly popular in one region (e.g., Ted Cruz in Texas, Mitt Romney in Utah) can ignore smaller regions and campaign only where large majorities are possible. Or a candidate who kills in California and New York can write off “flyover country” completely.

 If, however, the Electoral College elects a president, a candidate who is wildly popular in one region must also prevail in a number of sub-elections to win. The Electoral College ensures a better result for the country as a whole than the democratic power play wherein 51 percent of us matter and 49 percent of us don’t.

Think of the Electoral College like the World Series.

One person-one vote equates to the World Series Champions being determined by total number of runs scored. If the Dodgers win the first game 10-0, and the Yankees win the next four games 1-0, the Dodgers win the series. Even though the Yankees bested the Dodgers in four games, it doesn’t matter because the Dodgers scored 10 runs to their 4. One anomalous game decides the whole series. Without the Electoral College, a few heavily populated states decide the whole election.

So, the poor Electoral College sits condemned before its last meal because its power is misunderstood. How ironic—and tragic if no stay-of-execution arrives—that those who clamor for “one person-one vote” are seeking more power at the expense of power they already have.

Donna Carol Voss is a political commentator and the author of four books, including the recently released “Nothing to Apologize For: The Truth About Western Civilization.” Follow her on Twitter.
Prager University Video explaining the Electoral College simply and quickly.

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Powerful Movie: Pass the Word, Watch the Movie, Support Life, Shut Down Abortions

March 22, 2019

This is a powerful movie that should have all Christians and people of goodwill behind it 100%. Please go see the movie, take a friend, pass the word and let shut down Planned Parenthood and their whole Evil Empire.

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Socialism Fails Every Time – A 5-minute Primer

March 21, 2019
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The World’s 50 Most Anti-Christian Countries

March 17, 2019

Is anyone surprised that the majority of these anti-Christian countries are Islamic? Click on map below for larger image. This was published by Ignatius Press’ Catholic World Report. Washington D.C., Jan 15, 2018 / 11:55 am (CNA/EWTN News).- There are more than 215 million persecuted Christians worldwide according to the 2018 World Watch List, Open […]

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Finally a Bishop Refuses Communion to a Pro-Abort Senator

February 26, 2019

This should be the norm, not an extraordinary event. Bishops should act more like shepherds than politicians. Finally a bishop steps up and says, “NO!” Bishop Thomas J. Paprocki of Springfield, Illinois says Senator Dick Durbin is “cooperating in evil” and persisting in “manifest grave sin” because of his abortion advocacy and must therefore “not […]

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The Eight Stages of the Rise and Fall of Civilizations

February 14, 2019

Written by Msgr. Charles Pope and posted October 12, 2016 on Community in Mission Cultures and civilizations go through cycles. Over time, many civilizations and cultures have risen and then fallen. We who live in painful times like these do well to recall these truths. Cultures and civilizations come and go; only the Church (though […]

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Trump’s Brilliant Speech

February 7, 2019

I’ll just say it… [by Brian Birch] That was a helluva speech. President Trump delivered one of the best speeches of his presidency last night, weaving together aspirational rhetoric with raw, emotional personal stories, as well as a focus on key issues of deep concern to Catholics. And Americans agreed… A snap CNN poll showed […]

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Catholic Church Leaders Increasing Accused of Being Cowards

January 31, 2019

An article popped up on my screen today as I opened my e-mail account. It was from The American Thinker. I was asked if I agree with Alicia Colon, the author of the article. It is hard not too. Selections from The American Thinker’s article “Catholic Church Leaders are a Bunch of Cowards”: “The bishop who rushed […]

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Covington Catholic incident a black eye for pro-life leadership

January 22, 2019

January 21, 2019 (CatholicCulture.org) – by Phil Lawler.  It’s time for the pro-life movement to grow up. The disgraceful treatment of students from Covington Catholic – and by that I mean the pell-mell rush of pro-life “leaders” to condemn innocent young men – illustrates a potentially fatal flaw in the movement. For much too long, […]

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A Canon Law Primer on Church Teaching Regarding “Same-sex Marriage”

January 4, 2019

A primer on Church teaching regarding ‘same-sex marriage’ by Dr. Edward Peters STEVE RAY’S INTRODUCTORY COMMENT: This article was written by Canon Lawyer Ed Peters around the time the US Supreme Court foolishingly and arrogantly decided that homosexuals could marry and it was a valid and legal marriage. Now that we have lived with this egregious […]

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Should This Baby Be Aborted? You Decide

January 1, 2019

In the United States, there are many situations in which abortions are recommended, even encouraged by family, counselors, medical personnel and even religious advisors. Sometimes an abortion is recommended because of difficult circumstances and other times simply for convenience. Here are four cases for you to consider. Should these babies be aborted? You decide! Four […]

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Where Have All the Christmas Carols Gone?

December 25, 2018

I’m not that old. I’ll only be 64 years old this month but I still remember when the frosty month of December was filled with marvelous Christmas carols. It was like magic when the first snow covered the ground and the melodies sprang to life and everyone knew them, believed them and sang them with […]

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Care about Life, Family, our Country…??

November 6, 2018
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October 5, 2018
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