Syte Reitz

The hand that rocks the cradle rules the world…….

Browsing Posts tagged The Contrast

The Missing Link

Redefining How We Approach Politics

People are Flocking to Old Articles

This website, originally established to present a Catholic/conservative perspective to those who might be interested, seems to have recently become popular as an historical/political information resource.
Not my choice, but that of visitors, who are targeting very specific articles.

Increased-Traffic1Visitors are flocking to articles written as long as two years ago, on topics such as the 2011 Madison Capitol Teacher’s protests, the 2012 Presidential election, the old Catholic Church abuse scandals, and articles on the subject of freedom OF religion versus freedom FROM religion. (Most visited articles listed below.)

Traffic continues to visit my website even during my attempted vacation (now), despite the noticeable reduction in new articles posted.

The website is also getting significant negative attention in the form of hacking attempts.  We just survived a sophisticated Denial of Service (DoS) attack launched from computers in Europe.
(DoS attacks are usually reserved for much bigger potatoes than me, and they usually target large corporations and businesses.  They are highly illegal,  carry penalties of 10 years computer-hackerimprisonment, and are strictly forbidden by most nations.)  So somebody seems to be pretty motivated to take this website down.

The Question

So the question becomes– in a world with no shortage of political pundits or religion experts, why are people reading articles written by me, Mrs. small potato, with no political or religious credentials, for information on politics and on religion?  And why are those who disagree with me prepared to risk 10 years imprisonment to take me down?

Common Denominator

The common denominator among the most visited articles seems to be analysis of current political and cultural events from a religious and ethical perspective.

Yes, this blog violates the modern mandate of Separation of Church  and State.
in-god-we-trust-coin
Here, the interconnection between God and the events of this modern world are analyzed and examined in a matter-of-fact and straightforward way.  Our focus includes some common sense and some outside-the-box thinking– not surprising, because God always makes sense and God is always outside the box.

Apparently some readers are hungry for this approach.
Other readers want to shut the approach down.

In fact, the world makes much more sense when you add its Creator into the analysis.
And if including the Creator in political analysis makes sense, it makes even more sense to include the Creator in formulating political strategy.

How To Redefine Conservative Political Strategy after the November 2012 Fiasco?

There is little doubt that in 2013 conservative political strategy needs redefining; the Republican party seems on the verge of splitting, a split which could prove lethal to Republicans in the next election, and a split which did contribute to the Republican defeat in November 2012.Slide1

The Republican split is between the Party establishment, which has drifted increasingly over time toward compromise with the left and toward courting the “moderate” vote, and true conservatives, who adhere to conservative Judeo-Christian principles and to conservative fiscal strategy.  True conservatives are pro-life, pro-marriage, pro-balanced budget, and pro-lots of common sense.  The Establishment fears that such “extreme” (i.e., common sense) views may cause the party to lose votes.

Which way to go?  How can we avoid a split?  These are the questions being asked and this is why some seem to be returning to my brand of political analysis, which predicted, before November 2012, the chaos that would result from too much compromise with the left.

The Missing Link in Political Analysis and Strategy

linkPolitical strategists who steer local, national and global power games typically vie for support from every possible source.  They court money, fame, popular culture, the support of organizations, churches, business and media, Hollywood, and the favor of groups, of women, of minorities, and of immigrants.

Rarely does it occur to politicians, and even to some religious politicians, to court the support of the Almighty.

Politicians Courting the Almighty

Therein lies the key to political success- courting assistance from the Almighty.  Dubious as some may be about God’s involvement in human history, His involvement is quite apparent to those who remain open-minded.

When history is viewed from a perspective  that does not automatically exclude the existence of God, God’s action in human history becomes obvious.  The hand of God in human events is most obvious in those events which defy the laws of probability, in those events which accomplish far-reaching, perhaps even global results, where human effort seems to play little or small part in accomplishing the result, and in those events where politicians and battles play no significant role.  Nobody anticipates the result, everyone is surprised by the result, the result is truly remarkable, and no fingerprints are left behind.
That is God’s style and His trademark.

2 God the FatherExamples of such significant events which have shaped the course of human history, yet were not orchestrated by politicians, armies, or missionaries, include the Christianization (actually Catholicization) of  Europe at the time of Constantine, the dismantling of the Soviet Union without battle at the time of President Regan and Pope John Paul the Great, and most recently, the commencement of the the self-destruction of what has sometimes been called the Imperial Presidency of Barack Obama.  In recent months, in the absence of any action on the part of Barack Obama’s political opponents, scandal upon scandal has broken, and President Obama’s reputation and popularity are collapsing swiftly.

Including God in the Plan

There is, indeed, a God Who watches over us and participates in human activity, usually in very surprising and unexpected ways.  So ignoring God, failing to court His support and ignoring His wishes should constitute a pretty big tactical error for political strategists, if God does exist.  It would also be a pretty big tactical error for the 80% of America that prays not to pray for God’s help in restoring justice to our nation and to our world.

People can be so illogical.
90% of Americans believe in God, and they believe daily what CNN reporters report in the news, yet they forget that by definition the God they believe in would be powerful, good and involved with the world, and that it makes little sense to believe Anderson Cooper’s reports on events in Benghazi, while denying historical reports in a chronicle of God’s interaction with humanity, the BibleBible.  So the lessons to be learned from biblical stories like the parting of the Red Sea, or David’s slaying of Goliath, are illustrations of God’s power and of the assistance He provides to those who, like Moses, or like David, have faith in God’s promises and act with great confidence on that faith.  The same God, wielding the same power, is available to us today.  If we were to act with the faith of Moses or of David (or of Constantine, Pope John Paul the Great and Ronald Regan), we can expect monumental results that defy all odds.

We might note that God’s mind rarely works the way ours do. In all the cases cited above, Moses, Goliath, the Christianization of Europe, the defeat of the Soviet Union, and the demise of Barack Obama’s reputation, human expectations did not line up at all with the surprises God provided.

So the missing key to dealing with politics includes remembering to put God into the plan, and then having the faith and the patience to watch Him work in His own time.

Planning Without God

In the absence of a God, if we were reliant solely on our own devices, it would become tempting to fight adversaries with their own tools.  It would become tempting to sling mud back at our opponents, to court voters with promises of lollipops, to court moderate votes with continual compromise of our moral standards, and even to consider introducing a few lying and cheating Alinsky tactics of our own, when dealing with modern “progressive” opponents such as the Obama administration.  How else can we win against the tactics presently being used against us?

Quite a few modern conservatives have fallen into this temptation, and have started compromising with the opposition.  They fall for the fallacious argument that says compromising values will attract moderate voters.  They fall for the fallacious argument that hand-outs will buy votes.  They begin to walk away from their values, they compromise more-and-more, and they foolishly shift never-endingly toward the left.

The nomination of Mitt Romney was an example of such compromise, in which the Republican party split became very apparent, and in which frightened old school Republicans even violated their own convention rules.  They forced through the nomination of Mitt Romney, instead of playing by the rules, instead of negotiating their way through a brokered convention, and instead of considering more than one nominee at the Republican Convention.  They failed to realize that some greats like Abraham Lincoln and Ronald Regan were chosen under similar conditions, and that these conservative but previously unknown candidates had principles that were better able to defeat the incumbent Democrat President.

What does including God in politics look like?

When you remember to include God in the plan, you follow His rules, even in the face of overwhelming opposition and of Alinsky tactics, you pray, and you wait.
It takes a lot of faith, but it works.
God always comes through.

Your opposition would LOVE you to divorce politics from principled faith.
Divorcing politics from faith would have paralyzed Moses, David, Constantine, John Paul the Great, Regan, and now in 2013, divorcing politics from faith will paralyze us if we go in that direction.
Why do  you think Lenin worked hard to exterminate religion and why do you think Obama is working so hard to paralyze the Catholic Church through the HHS Mandate?

Because that is how they paralyze their opposition.

Dumping Judeo-Christian Values (or Adopting Alinsky Tactics) Will Boomerang on You

When we succumb to the threats progressives make and we fall for their demands to violate God’s law, we compromise our values.  To fight the devil with his own tools doesn’t work anyway, it boomerangs on us.

In nominating Mitt Romney, conservative and pro-life values were compromised, and Republican Convention rules were broken.  Mitt Romney may be a very nice man.  But he was not elected democratically at the Republican convention, and he does not personify the values of conservative America. Mitt Romney was a compromise with the left, a compromise some claimed was very similar to Barack Obama.   The result was the alienation of true conservatives, and the alienation of numerous Tea Party activists.  This alienation among conservatives was so pronounced that 3 million REGISTERED REPUBLICANS did not go to the polls in November of 2012.

Three million registered Republicans stayed home rather than vote for Mitt Romney, the man who refused to sign the Susan B. Anthony pro-life pledge, who had supported abortion and embryonic stem cell research in the past, and who now supports gay boy scout leaders and gay adoption.  The man who created the blueprint for ObamaCare. The man whose nomination was pushed through by brute force at the Republican convention by the Party Establishment, against the wishes of numerous true conservatives. The man who did not represent the wishes of the people, and so 3 million people did not go to the polls in protest.

Three million votes added to the November 2012 totals would have won the election for Republicans.  If the REGISTERED Republican voters whom the Republican establishment aliented with it’s shenanigans had gone to the polls on November 6, 2012, Barack Obama would no longer be President!

Selling out our values sure does boomerang on us.

What About Those of Us Who Prayed, Who Worked, Who Participated in Freedom of Religion rallies?

The prayers, the work, the Freedom of Religion rallies of 2011 and 2012 in which many true conservatives participated were not wasted.  Americans have been wakng up in recent years both politically and religiously, and are fighting back against the Imperial Obama administration.
God did not ignore those prayers or those efforts.

Mitt Romney would not have been the answer to those prayers.
A true conservative would have been the answer to those prayers, but the Republican establishment made sure, compromising even the rules of the Republican Convention,  that a true conservative was not nominated.

If the Republican Party establishment was prepared to sell out our values and to (undemocratically) ram through  their favored “presumptive nominee,”  we might actually be better off with 4 more years of Barack Obama, rather than with an unknown, opportunistic Mitt Romney.

Mitt Romney would have, at best, treaded water for us.  Conservative policy was not likely to be implemented any time soon.

But, four more years of Obama Administration offers the potential for Americans to experience  firsthand the results of the disastrous Obama policy.

Pain and economic hardship can have a sobering effect on people, forcing them to realize that liberalism is a luxury they can no longer afford.  The poor, by definition, cannot be liberal with money and must conserve.  Goodby liberalism, hello conservatism!  God’s balance beam at work!

This principle holds true not only for economic liberalism, but for moral liberalism and for all forms of liberalism.  Society, like individuals, makes mistakes, learns from them, and frequently make corrections, when truth becomes obvious.

Back to the Most Popular Articles

The articles to which my readers have been flocking include those analyzing the Alinsky tactics in use by teacher’s unions in Madison, by progressives in the Democrat party, and by the Obama administration.  They include comparisons between Alinsky tactics and the Ten Commandments.  They include quoting Alinsky’s  dedication of his book to Lucifer, or to Satan.  They also include warnings to Republicans on surrendering moral ground in the face of Alinsky tactics.  They include pointing out that a conservative candidate, contrary to some opinions, would have made a much stronger candidate in the 2012 Presidential election.  They include reminders that America is not a Godless country, that the Constitution is not a Godless constitution, and that it is worth our while to stick to Judeo-Christian morality and to the Constitution of the United States, despite the fear of many that elections can only be won by continual compromise and by erosion of moral ground.

What Insurmountable Problems Do We Face Today?

How, in a nation that appears to be divided 50/50 on moral, cultural and political issues,  do you defeat a Santa Claus administration which is handing out lollipops and favors in exchange for votes, while demonizing hard working Americans with Alinsky tactic lies and with smear tactics?

Does the solution lie in joining the Santa Claus band wagon, and compromising moral absolutes such as abortion, in order to win over a percentage of the “moderate votes,” in an attempt to tip the balance in our favor?

The Solution

Or does the solution lie in bold moral leadership inspired by devotion to God, such as that provided by Presidents like Abraham Lincoln and Ronald Regan, who took strong moral stances and inspired voters to support good men and to follow their lead?

When we give up speaking of God, we fail to use our most powerful resource.

Modern political correctness insists that we deny the truth, that we pretend the Emperor (e.g. Obama) is wearing clothes, and that we admire his fabulous non-existent clothes.
When, in actual fact, he is quite naked. The Emperor has no clothes.

Church and State – The Intimate Connection

It is presumed by most, particularly in the United States, that our laws are based on morality. And that law is based on what is right and not wrong, and on what is just and not unjust.

It is a given fact that morality is reasoned out and embodied in religious belief that there is a God, and that He has set down some inviolable laws that even governments cannot violate.
History shows that without limits, in the absence of a higher authority, governments, like individuals, tend toward becoming tyrannical.

It is therefore logical, particularly in a nation that is religious (as is the United States), that at least on some level, there must be a connection between Church and State.  And that government is accountable to God, the maker of the universe.

Christian Principles Fundamental in the Constitution of the United States

The Declaration of Independence of 1776 referred to US citizens being “endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights,” and the Founders of this nation included Christian principles in the Constitution.  Even the First Amendment, which forbade any law establishing an official national religion, also forbade prohibiting the free exercise of religion.

The religious intent of the First Amendment was further clarified by a 1799 court ruling, which indicated that the Founders intended the US to follow Christian principles, without allowing one religious group to control government:

Religion is of general and public concern, and on its support depend, in great measure, the peace and good order of government, the safety and happiness of the people.  By our form of government, the Christian religion is the established religion; and all sects and denominations of Christians are placed on the same equal footing. 1799 – Runkel vs. Winemiller

To this day, the vast majority of the population of the United States (80%) are still Christian.  These Christians vote, and these Christians contribute towards shaping the law.

Further history describing the role of religion in US government and on the origin of “Separation of Church and State” can be found at   Separation of Church and State, NOT SEPARATION OF GOD FROM STATE, by Fr. Bill McCarthy, MSA.

Keeping Your Beliefs Under Your Hat

In the present culture, we are told to keep our religion under our hats, and not to discuss it publicly.
This has been hammered into us so effectively, that most conservatives are intimidated into silence regarding their beliefs.  The likes of the Freedom From Religion Foundation ardently and publicly attack anyone who dares to demonstrate their belief in God visibly.

Just recently, my husband and I had dinner at a great Madison Middle Eastern Restaurant.  Seated at a table not far from us was a group of academics, a professor and graduate student hosting an invited speaker who had obviously just given a lecture at UW Madison on LGBT issues.  Their conversation was focused on LGBT issues, was loud and lively, and tended to dominate the small room we were in.  It was not an exceptional situation in Madison.

My thoughts drifted to the fact that my husband and I were NOT discussing our very conservative views, were NOT discussing them at high volume, and were NOT dominating the room.  I started wondering what would happen to us in Madison, WI, or in most American towns, if we did start doing that.  I realized that many of us have been shushed into silence.

Selective Silence Enables Minority Rule

The silence on morality and on religious beliefs demanded by modern political correctness is not an equitable mandate to which all are subject.  Liberals and progressives remain free push their values publicly and brazenly, and they clamor violation of rights when anyone tries to prevent them from doing so.

Yet conservatives have no such parallel rights, either to speech or to action. When conservatives follow legally prescribed channels and vote their values into law, progressive judges (not elected, but appointed) are found to cancel the democratic majority’s moral resolution.

One prime example of this the the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), voted into law in 1996, yet now challenged by progressives, who hope to use the Supreme Court of the United States to get their way when majority rule does not help them. A Supreme Court, incidentally, to which two progressive radicals have recently been appointed, by progressive President Obama, who does not stand with the American public on most major issues, including gay marriage, federal funding of abortion, and privacy and transparency issues. Recently, the Supreme Court struck down certain aspects of DOMA, ruling that now the federal government has to accept the redefinition of marriage when the states redefine marriage.

Separation of Church and State – Very Important to Define Separation

Separation of Church and State.
Yes, Church and State must be separate in government.
If I had the power to enforce my religious belief system on the United States, I would not do so.
No government can force any one religion, and citizens must be free to choose their beliefs (or non-beliefs).

But that is where the separation ends.
The individual must exercise their religious beliefs, their God-inspired knowledge of what is right and wrong, in the voting booth and in their public stance on issues.
How can any Christian shelve the morality of murder, of theft, or of any moral issue when delegating power to those who govern us?
Those who advocate any such notion are short-sighted; do they have no idea that our independence as a nation and our government  are based on certain inalienable rights?
That even the Imperial Obama administration cannot violate our rights to life, liberty and pursuit of happiness?

Future Directions

The answers are pretty simple, and are available to anyone.

I view all of life, including American politics, from a educated religious perspective, and thus I refuse to separate Church and State.
Any shreds of wisdom that may find their way into my material are not my own.
I Quote from the Liturgy of the Hours, a set of daily prayers based on Holy Scripture and available to all:

If the Lord had not been on our side….
Then would the waters have engulfed us,
the torrent gone over us;
over our head would have swept
the raging waters.
……………………………………...-Psalm 123 (124)

It’s very simple: stick strictly to God’s law, pray, and wait.
So cool to watch as it works!

Related Post: What Happens When You Take Character Out of Politics

 

Appendix

Articles generating most interest include:

What Happens When You Take Character Out of Politics

or

The National Disease

or

Understanding the Role of Religion in Government

.

.
“Divorcing religious faith from public life soon leads to separating government from morality and citizens from their consciences. And that leads to politics without character, which has now become a national disease.”

-Archbishop Chaput in Render Unto Caesar, p. 169.

No– nobody’s talking about violating the separation of Church and State, or the establishment of a state religion.

What is being discussed is the inclusion of principles  in government on which most citizens, and major religions, agree.  Inclusion of these principles in the Constitution and in our system of laws helps to maintain morality and justice.  The principles are not imposed from above, but result from a religious population voting their conscience to create a Constitution and to pass laws which are fair, just, and beneficial to society.

Just as the Founding Fathers of the United States practiced these principles, so, too, the 80% Christian Americans today need to think, act on, and vote these principles to maintain the system of government that was passed down to us.  We cannot sit around idly, while radicals and “progressives” progressively work to eliminate all principles of right and wrong from our government.

Biblically speaking, Christ told disciples to render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, referring at least on one level, to the payment of taxes.  Archbishop Chaput points out that in 2012, paying taxes and sitting back is not sufficient.  We must inform ourselves of where politicians are steering our government, we must consult our Christian consciences, and we must take civic action to ensure that our faith, our morality and our consciences take part in the democratic process that continues to shape this nation.

We cannot fall for false and misleading demands by radicals that we guarantee freedom FROM religion in the public sphere.  We need to support freedom OF religion, which builds the politics of character and begins to cure the national disease.

Questions?

Read the book. Amazon lets you read the first chapter free.

What Happens When You Try to Divorce Religious Faith from Public Life?

Freedom FROM Religion happens. (See The Contrast.)
Politics without character happens.
It’s not a pretty sight.

Best Summer Read: Render Unto Caesar

In his book Render Unto Caesar, Archbishop Charles Chaput gives a brilliant analysis of the role of religious belief in government, which would interest any conservative and any Christian.  It’s a compelling, can’t-put-it-down read.  Who would think that our Archbishops would start turning into popular superstars?  First Cardinal Dolan, now Archbishop Chaput.

It is With Wisdom and Good Reason that the Constitution of the United States included religion in the Bill of Rights:

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
– the First Amendment, Constitution of the United Sates

Read Render Unto Caesar, and start rendering unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s (and no, you don’t render money, you render your civic action). I have the Kindle copy, which is only $10.99, and works on iPhone.  Amazon lets you read the first chapter free.

To quote another great bishop,

Government needs religion because religion is the only reliable source of voluntary self-restraint.
No government can police a whole nation without the help of voluntary self-restraint. 
-(my paraphrasing of a talk given by Bishop Robert Morlino to Madison’s Future Society in 2003).

 

 

 

 

 

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