Choose color scheme

Category Archives: Government / Politics

  • Why Nations Go To War

    Why Nations Go To War

    Why Nations Go To War

    ISBN: 0495797189

    Stoessinger, John George. Why Nations Go To War. Boston, MA: Wadsworth, 2011.

    My first semester at BYU I decided to study political science. It seemed to fit at the time. It didn’t. After the first semester I knew I didn’t care for it. After the second semester I was done. What I really enjoyed was political philosophy. Surprise!

  • Mormon Discrimination

    Why I Support Discrimination

    As a staunch and “devout” Latter-day Saint (Mormon), I firmly and completely support the individual right of personal and public association (and the negative right of disassociation) and of contract. Politically, it was the principle of the natural right of association, disassociation, and contract that even made the Declaration of Independence a rational possibility. England didn’t feel the Colonists had the right to disassociate politically, publicly, or individually, but the colonists thought

  • What I Find Very Disturbing About Americans and the Connecticut Shootings

    By now, everyone has heard of the atrocious and deplorable elementary school shootings that occurred in Newtown, Conn, that claimed the lives of 20 elementary school children, 6 teachers, and the shooter – Adam Lanza.

    In the wake of this horrible and inexcusable tragedy comes another tragedy no less severe: the American people’s complete indifference to the same wholesale slaughter committed upon other groups of children by a faction of our own military. Said one meme circulating on Facebook,

     What I find most disturbing about the Connecticut shooting is that it reveals an essential truth about this county: people are only outraged because it was a massacre that was not sanctioned by the state.

  • What Good is a Petition?

    As of my writing this, there are approximately 675,000 Americans from every state in the Union who have digitally petitioned the White House to allow their state to secede from the United States of America. In other words, there are the beginnings of a movement that seekito break up the United States as we know it.

    On its face, I support secession as a principle of individual liberty and sound Constitutional government. If government goes beyond its authority, it is the right of the people to either remove themselves from the association of that government or to abolish it altogether.

    That said, the current movement to secede is an endeavor in fruitlessness.

  • The Twelfth Article of Faith and Obedience to the Law

    Originally posted on LDS Liberty here.

    [A podcast of our interview with the author on this topic can be found here.]

    ***

    We believe in being subject to kings, presidents, rulers, and magistrates, in obeying honoring, and sustaining the law.

    The Twelfth Article of Faith is a standard of religious compliance and belief of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints specifically regarding every member’s obligation to be subject to the laws of their country and to their leaders. Many interpret this Article of Faith to mean absolute compliance to all laws enacted within a political mechanism, while others have used this article to justify a higher principle of natural rights, justice, and morality.

    Grammar of the Twelfth Article of Faith

    This particular Article of Faith is commonly misread to include a coordinating conjunction that is not actually found and which dramatically changes its meaning when added. Most quote theTwelfth Article of Faith to read, “We believe in being subject to kings, presidents rulers, and magistrates, [and] in obeying, honoring, and sustaining the law.” The coordinating conjunction “and,” however, does not exist in the actual text. This is important because, grammatically, the coordinating conjunction changes the meaning of this passage.

  • Why You Vote For Someone Matters

    This article is also posted on LDS Liberty.

    *******

    This article is not about getting you to vote against President Obama. This article is not about getting you to vote against Mitt Romney. This article is not about getting you to vote against Ron Paul, Gary Johnson, or any other of the unknown candidates running for president, or any other office in 2012 (or any other election). This article is not about convincing you to vote, if your abstention is a protest against the government and all that it entails.

    This article is about getting you to vote for President Obama. This article is about getting you to vote for Mitt Romney. This article is about getting you to vote for Ron Paul, Gary Johnson, or any other of the unknown candidates running for president, or any other office in 2012 (or any other election). If you choose not to vote, this article is about getting you to abstain for a reason.

    But what difference does it make?

  • Misplaced Power and the POTUS

    I am often told that our nation is hanging in the balance, and that if Obama wins the election then all will be lost. In such discussions, however, I am left wondering – what happened to the checks-and-balances within the Constitution? How can one man yield so much power as to single-handedly destroy this country?

    Speaking to the frailties of the US Constitution, James Madison – the “father” of the US Constitution – observed in the Federalist No 48 that while not every branch of government “should be wholly

  • Libertarian Realism: Shifting Overton’s Window

    Mitt Romney has a problem – a libertarian problem.

    It’s not because the libertarian Republicans were poorly treated by the GOP establishment over the last 4 years. It’s not that Ron Paul supporters were called “Paulbots”, “Paultards”, “Psychos”, “Crazies”, and basic “domestic terrorists” by fellow Republicans and conservative pundits. It’s not because the RNC and the Romney campaign did everything possible to keep Ron Paul delegates out of the National Convention (1). It’s not because the RNC broke its own rules. It’s not because the RNC performed blatant scripted rule changes that constituted a massive and unprecedented power-grab (1).

    These issues are annoying for libertarian Republicans to deal with among fellow Republicans, but the reasons why we will not vote for Romney are

  • Personal-Revelation

    Voting and Personal Revelation: Keep it to Yourself

    This article is written for two audiences. The first audience is anyone, Mormon or not, who may stumble across this blog and find interest in understanding how Utah’s unique socio-religious base affects the political scene. The second audience is anyone who has, or knows someone who has, seemingly received “personal revelation” from God to act in a particular way and then lambastes everyone for not acting in that expressed way.

    A person cannot interact in the political scene in Utah without knowing the Mormon lingo. Mormon scripture and words from the General Authorities of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are used as much of a political tool to justify one’s personal political preference in Utah as any person outside of Utah might invoke political philosophers, Party leaders, or the law to promote their own beliefs.  As a politically active Latter-day Saint living in Utah, I see this mixture of politics and religion on a daily basis in political discussion.

  • “United States Foreign Policy”

    The following was written by Ezra Taft Benson, Secretary of Agriculture under Dwight D. Eisenhower (1953-1961), and was published in Chapter 9 of his work An Enemy Hath Done This (pgs 149-164).

    *************************************************************************************************************

    “Observe good faith and justice towards all Nations. Cultivate peace and harmony with all. – Religion and Morality enjoin this conduct; and can it be that good policy does not equally enjoin it? – It will be worth of a free, enlightened, and, at no distant period, a great nation, to give to mankind the magnanimous and too novel example of a People always guided by an exalted justice and benevolence. .. Can it be that Providence has not connected to permanent felicity of a Nation with its virtue?” (President George Washington, Farewell Address, September 17, 1796).