Friday, July 28, 2006

Is History Dead?

People no longer read histories? They read only excerpts of histories. The details are found in the writings of Tacitus, Plutarch and Josephus, Voltair, Livy, and others who actually wrote histories. Now it is common for a reasonably educated person to think that people back in the days of Christ were generally nincompoops. We think they're idiots because we don't know anything about their great feats of architecture, battles, fleets, armies, war machines philosophy and mathamatics. In actuality we're the idiots because we refuse to study the dead masters. We refuse to aknowledge that there were perhapse smarter people than us at some point in history.

Perhaps people are no longer interested in the details of ancient cultures or individuals. They will read novels set in imaginary world. Why not read a true story? It means more to me, why doesn't it to others? The amount of detail is amazing. Try reading this story of Caesar by Plutarch. Or read some of the works of Josephus (Jewish Historian around the time of Christ).

In my home state California there are histories of the indians, of great floods in the central valley, of merchant ships, and others that give details of what our state was like a hundred or two hundred years ago. Take for example the book Two Years Before The Mast by Richard Henry Dana. This is the story of a sailor who sailed all the way from England to the area of San Clamente on the coast of California just below Los Angeles. This is a very facinating history. Buy it at Amazon.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006


Since our nation's inception there have been both Christians and Non-Christians involved in our government. Many Christians have argued over the years that our nation began as a "Christian Nation" and that it was founded by Christians who wrote a "Christian Constitution."

Dr. Gregg Frazer, Professor of Political Studies at The Master's College, has done extensive study on the subject and wrote his Ph.D. thesis on it. His thesis is titled The Political Theology Of The American Founding. To order contact ProQuest Information and Learning or call 800-521-0600.

His term "Theistic Rationalism" and thearguments behind it are helping many to rethink the they have looked at the religious views of the founders. In his thesis Dr. Frazer looks at key founders and their religious beliefs.

Another book on this topic is The Faiths of Our Fathers: What America's Founders Really Believed by Alf J. Mapp on which Dr. Frazer has written a review.

Discussion on the religion of the founders has been going on at Millennialstar. For additional info on Frazer's thesis go here:

Worldmagblog Frazer gives an introduction post on this page during the discussion.

Jon Rowe's Blog

Friday, July 21, 2006

Israel Warns Civilians

While Israel is attacking and planning to attack they are also doing something else. Here is an honerable thing to do - warn specific vilages to leave and where to go before reacting against their part of the country. This is very interesting.

From the NY Times article

JERUSALEM, July 21 — Israel called up a few thousand reservists today, in possible preparation for a more extensive ground operation in southern Lebanon, as its warplanes continued to hit targets there and to drop leaflets warning residents of villages to leave their homes and head northward.
While some would argue that they shouldn't be there in the first place and that this is a terrible thing telling people to get out, I hold a different view. This is a very generous thing to do on the part of the Isralies. This makes it very clear that they want to save as many lives as possible - not destroy as many as possible.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Israel - Hezbollah Conflict: President Bush Informs Congress

President Bush has seen fit to report to Congress the activities of the US Department of Defense over in Israel and Lebenan. This letter was ment to keep an open channel of communication between our president and Congress.

For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
July 19, 2006

Text of a Letter from the President to the Speaker of the House of Representatives and the President Pro Tempore of the Senate

July 18, 2006

Dear Mr. Speaker: (Dear Mr. President:)

Hostilities involving Israeli military forces and Hezbollah terrorists in Lebanon commenced on July 12, 2006, and have included military operations in the vicinity of the U.S. Embassy in Beirut.

Although there is no evidence that Americans are being directly targeted, the security situation has deteriorated and now presents a potential threat to American citizens and the U.S. Embassy. On July 14, the Department of State first requested Department of Defense assistance to support the departure of American citizens from Lebanon. On July 15, U.S. military helicopters temporarily deployed to Cyprus. On July 16, these combat-equipped helicopters delivered to U.S. Embassy, Beirut, a contingent of U.S. military personnel who will assist in planning and conducting the departure from Lebanon of U.S. Embassy personnel and citizens and designated third country personnel. The helicopters also transported U.S. citizens from Beirut to Cyprus. It is expected that these helicopters will continue to provide support to the Embassy, including for the departure of additional personnel from Lebanon. It is likely that additional combat-equipped U.S. military forces may be deployed to Lebanon and Cyprus and other locations, as necessary, in order to support further efforts to assist in the departure of persons from Lebanon and to provide security.

These actions are being undertaken solely for the purpose of protecting American citizens and property. United States forces will redeploy as soon as it is determined that the threat to U.S. citizens and property has ended and the departure of any persons, as necessary, is completed.

I have taken this action pursuant to my constitutional authority to conduct U.S. foreign relations and as Commander in Chief and Chief Executive. I am providing this report as part of my efforts to keep the Congress informed, consistent with the War Powers Resolution.



Wednesday, July 19, 2006

President Bush Vetoes Bill That Would Expand Funding For Embryonic Stem Cell Research

Before today President Bush had never used the veto power of the president. Today he used that power to keep Congress from expanding the funding for embryonic stem cell research.

Read the President's veto message.

President bush held a press conference where families including many small children were present. He began his speech with this statement: "In this new era, our challenge is to harness the power of science to ease human suffering without sanctioning the practices that violate the dignity of human life,"

I was encouraged by this action by President Bush, though it does make me sad to think that could ever be a question as to how anyone would make that decision.

Focus on the Family holds a strong opposing position on the issue. Here is an excerpt from their Position Statement on Human Embryonic Stem Cell Research, dated
December 10, 2004.

Focus on the Family opposes stem cell research that destroys embryonic humans. In order for scientists to isolate and culture embryonic stem cells, a living, human embryo must be killed. It is never morally or ethically justified to kill one human being in order to help benefit another. By requiring the destruction of embryos, the tiniest human beings, embryonic stem cell research violates the medical ethic of "Do No Harm."

The White House has published a Fact Sheet on Embryonic Stem Cell Research

These embryos are fully human and fully alive. It is killing another person to destroy a human embryo. This tiny person has a soul, and every person who kills one of these will be held accountable to God.

Political Philosophy - Post-Constitutional Society

I would propose that The United States is becoming a post-constitutional society. I believe that it is possible our nation is fast approaching the end of the constitutional era.

In 1973 Ronald Reagan said "Our constitution is a document that protects the people from government." I sometimes wonder how much longer that will remain true.

Every day our Constitution, our "supreme law of the land", seems to hold less power than the day before. Realistically, with corrupt people, we will see an end to the constitutional era. Inevitably, without the foundation of conservative ideals, our system must fail.

How do you define Man or Woman?

In many states the definition of a man or woman is based on what a person was when they were born. Does this definition work? What are the implications on our society if anyone can simply change their gender at their own whim?

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

At Work

"In God We Trust" AND "With God, All Things Are Possible."

"In God We Trust" AND "With God, All Things Are Possible."

I found this new Ohio law extremely interesting. They are now requiring schools that receive public funding to display donated copies of the state an national mottos. Read the Citizen Link story here.

Ohio Governor Bob Taft signed the bill into law. While legislators flocked to support the bill, not all Ohioans feel the same way about it Link

As a Christian this sort of makes me wish that I lived in Ohio. Here in California we don't have nearly that much sopport for Christian mottos and ideals in our public school system. I can't imagine our legislature passing something like that.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Concerns With Classical Christian Education

Recent years have brought about a renewed interest in the classical system of education particularly in Christian circles. Some are focusing on giving their children a Christian education with the Bible as their source of truth and using the classical system as a tool through which to give their children a better grasp of their world view. Others however, are losing that Biblical focus and giving way to the classic philosphers who inspired the original method teaching their children Latin at an early age so that they can read the pegen philosophers in their original language. This is truly a misalignment of priorities if one is concerned about the spiritual well being of their children.

I am currently researching this and related topics. I wonder if there are others out there with the same concern I have.

See my new blog.