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Archive for June, 2008

The SC just released its opinion on the District of Columbia v. Heller on the question of whether the right to bear arms is an individual right within the context of the 2nd Amendment.

Justice Scalia wrote the majority opinion. This is a truly exciting and historic day. I am waiting for the release of the opinion.

More to come

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Don’t call ‘em foreigners, aliens, or outsiders. The committee formerly known as the Foreign Mission Board will now be titled RP Global Missions… at least until we prove life on Mars. RP Intergalactic Missions is not far off.

BTW does anyone vet this stuff based on appeal to RP demographics? When I think of the word global I think rootless, Obama, left-leaning universalism, globalism, global warming, global domination… yuk!!!

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The Synod adopted the 2008 Report of the RPCNA’s Synod Study Committee to Read and Evaluate Reports and Response of Fraternal (and other) Reformed Denominations and Institutions Concerning the “Justification Controversy.” What a handle!

I am wondering what it will mean for the RPCNA? What exactly are the “theological views that are generally associated with the movements identified as ‘the New Perspective(s) on Paul’ and ‘The Federal Vision’.” The resolutions were adopted with few questions asked. Everyone is against it in general principle but what about the specifics? If questions had been asked, I wonder what would be said about the following items:

1) Monocovenantalism;

2) the primacy of biblical theology over systematic theology;

3) the doctrine of definitive sanctification;

4) uber-protestant “me-and-my-bible says so-ism” over against the received traditions of the Reformed Confessions.

What exactly have we learned from the “justification controversy”? These are things to think about in the days ahead. Who knows what the future will bring.

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Rev. David Reese shepherded a committee report on the “Justification Controversy” through the Synod.

Here are the recommendations as adopted by the Synod:

1. That Synod DECLARE that we stand in solidarity with our Reformed and Presbyterian brethren in rejecting as contrary to the Scriptures as summarized by our confessional standards the theological views that are generally associated with the movements identified as “the New Perspective(s) on Paul” and the “Federal Vision”.

2. That Synod REAFFIRM our commitment to the biblical, historical, and confessional, Reformed doctrine of justification– sola gratia, sola fide, solus Christus– which requires the imputation of the active obedience of Jesus Christ as an essential component of that righteousness which is the ground of our justification and is received by faith alone.

3. That Synod RECOMMEND to our ministers and members the study of the reports of the PCA, OPC, RCUS and Mid-America Reformed Seminary.

4. That Synod REQUEST our Sessions, Presbyteries, and other examination boards to be diligent in their examinations of potential office holders as to the critical areas of theology that are associated with the new views.

Committee:

Dr. Richard C. Gamble
Dr. Alan Noell
Rev. David Reese, Chr.
Rev. Scott Wilkinson

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Last night my family and I were out and about getting Conservative Party candidate designating petitions signed in the Town of Walworth. We do it as a family affair with hopes that we are teaching our children about civic duty and American democracy. It is the second year we have done the work and we are learning some lessons ourselves.

First, it is a pleasure to get to know our neighbors in rural Walworth. When we knock on the door they are friendly, welcoming, offer refreshments and talk with us about the “political scene.”

Second, when we go to the edge of Walworth that sits closest to Rochester we are knocking on extremely different doors. The doors of suburban “McMansions” and their doors are jealously guarded. Mind you, we are only seeking signatures from folks who are registered members of the Conservative Party. Asking them only to do their duty as members of the party by signing the petitions that will give candidates access to our ballot line in November, but we are almost exclusively met by cracked doors asking “what do you want.” This is followed by a door slamming in our face or a mysterious hand that slips out the door takes the petitions, screws them up (ok that only happened once) and offers them back. Meanwhile we stand on the doorstep like potential murderers.

We lived for a time in the city of Rochester and found our neighbors friendly and accessible. We feel we have really become part of the community here in rural Walworth (as much a part as transports can hope to become). But the suburbs are another matter. Last year we swore we would not try to get signatures from suburbanites again. This year I am serious about it.

Is this the upside of high gas prices? Sadly, high gas will hit my rural neighbors the hardest but… just maybe… it will help to draw the suburbanite out of his atomized prison, allow him to meet his neighbors, and restore a sense of community to an ailing American dream.

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Kansas Abortion Battle

Here’s a news report on the hearing, in which Caleb Stegall was involved, yesterday before the Kansas Supreme Court.

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Ron Paul’s presidential campaign has come to an end but the Revolution moves forward. Paul has founded a new organization called Campaign For Liberty.

From the website:

The mission of the Campaign for Liberty is to promote and defend the great American principles of individual liberty, constitutional government, sound money, free markets, and a noninterventionist foreign policy, by means of educational and political activity.

The Campaign for Liberty will carry out its mission through the following activities:
Promoting candidates for public office who share our commitment to freedom.

Gaining a foothold in political life at every level of government by expanding our precinct leader program.

Educating the electorate and lobbying against harmful or unconstitutional legislation.

Encouraging the formation of discussion groups and book clubs at the local level to help people learn more about our ideas.

Establishing a speakers bureau to give presentations around the country about the great principles we champion.

Developing materials for homeschooling families, to help them educate their children in history, sound economics, and related fields.

Featuring written as well as video commentaries on the news and issues of the day.

Additional efforts as time and resources allow.
Over the next few months we will be developing our program, organizing a team, and announcing new and exciting projects. Join now to get all of the latest updates and news!

Americans inherit from their ancestors a glorious tradition of freedom and resistance to oppression. Our country has long been admired by the rest of the world for her great example of liberty and prosperity – a light shining in the darkness of tyranny.
But many Americans today are frustrated. The political choices they are offered give them no real choice at all. For all their talk of “change,” neither major political party as presently constituted challenges the status quo in any serious way. Neither treats the Constitution with anything but contempt. Neither offers any kind of change in monetary policy. Neither wants to make the reductions in government that our crushing debt burden demands. Neither talks about bringing American troops home not just from Iraq but from around the world. Our country is going bankrupt, and none of these sensible proposals are even on the table.

This destructive bipartisan consensus has suffocated American political life for many years. Anyone who tries to ask fundamental questions instead of cosmetic ones is ridiculed or ignored.

That is why the Campaign for Liberty was established: to highlight the neglected but common-sense principles we champion and reinsert them into the American political conversation.

The U.S. Constitution is at the heart of what the Campaign for Liberty stands for, since the very least we can demand of our government is fidelity to its own governing document. Claims that our Constitution was meant to be a “living document” that judges may interpret as they please are fraudulent, incompatible with republican government, and without foundation in the constitutional text or the thinking of the Framers. Thomas Jefferson spoke of binding our rulers down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution, and we are proud to follow in his distinguished lineage.

With our Founding Fathers, we also believe in a noninterventionist foreign policy. Inspired by the old Robert Taft wing of the Republican Party, we are convinced that the American people cannot remain free and prosperous with 700 military bases around the world, troops in 130 countries, and a steady diet of war propaganda. Our military overstretch is undermining our national defense and bankrupting our country.

We believe that the free market, reviled by people who do not understand it, is the most just and humane economic system and the greatest engine of prosperity the world has ever known.

We believe with Ludwig von Mises, Henry Hazlitt, and F.A. Hayek that central banking distorts economic decisionmaking and misleads entrepreneurs into making unsound investments. Hayek won the Nobel Prize for showing how central banks’ interference with interest rates sets the stage for economic downturns. And the central bank’s ability to create money out of thin air transfers wealth from the most vulnerable to those with political pull, since it is the latter who receive the new money before the price increases it brings in its wake have yet occurred. For economic and moral reasons, therefore, we join the great twentieth-century economists in opposing the Federal Reserve System, which has reduced the value of the dollar by 95 percent since it began in 1913.

We oppose the dehumanizing assumption that all issues that divide us must be settled at the federal level and forced on every American community, whether by activist judges, a power-hungry executive, or a meddling Congress. We believe in the humane alternative of local self-government, as called for in our Constitution.

We oppose the transfer of American sovereignty to supranational organizations in which the American people possess no elected representatives. Such compromises of our country’s independence run counter to the principles of the American Revolution, which was fought on behalf of self-government and local control. Most of these organizations have a terrible track record even on their own terms: how much poverty have the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund actually alleviated, for example? The peoples of the world can interact with each other just fine in the absence of bureaucratic intermediaries that undermine their sovereignty.

We believe that freedom is an indivisible whole, and that it includes not only economic liberty but civil liberties and privacy rights as well, all of which are historic rights that our civilization has cherished from time immemorial.

Our stances on other issues can be deduced from these general principles.

Our country is ailing. That is the bad news. The good news is that the remedy is so simple and attractive: a return to the principles our Founders taught us. Respect for the Constitution, the rule of law, individual liberty, sound money, and a noninterventionist foreign policy constitute the foundation of the Campaign for Liberty.

Will you join us?

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These are amazing statistics- 400 billion barrels! Oil may not be the future but the future is not yet. Responsible drilling with proper care for environmental considerations is a must. Now!!!

Conservative Party of New York State

Press Release ~ June 12, 2008
corrected version: (400 Billion Barrels)
~~~~~~~~~~
For Immediate Release Contact: Shaun Marie Levine
June 12, 2008 518-356-7882 http://www.cpnys.org

CONSERVATIVE CALL FOR OIL DRILLING
GRASS ROOTS EFFORTS MAKE A DIFFERENCE
WE CHANGED ELECTED OFFICIALS REGARDING
DRIVER’S LICENSES AND IMMIGRATION
NOW WE MUST DO THE SAME ON DRILLING FOR OIL

Ft. Hamilton Station, NY – Today the New York State Conservative Party launched a grassroots effort to have New Yorkers contact their federal officials to demand an end to the political bickering in Washington, DC and begin drilling for American oil.

Chairman Michael R. Long stated, “Energy prices are hurting our economy and apparently, there is no end in sight. But we can make a difference as we have in the past…New Yorkers and all American’s must let Congress know that the time to drill for oil here in America is long past.” And yes, we also have to explore additional avenues available for our energy consumption, nuclear, wind, solar, natural gas and coal.

Until we convert to these alternative methods, we must drill for oil in oil rich America. The Bakken fields beneath North Dakota, Montana and Canada hold an estimated 400 billion barrels of oil. In comparison, Saudi Arabia’s biggest field, Gahawar, has an estimated 55 billion barrels. ANWR has an estimated 10.4 billion barrels. (Thanks to Townhall.com contributor, Lawrence Kudlow’s article of June 9 for these figures.) Also cited in the same article is the fact that a Bureau of Land Management study showing 279 million acres under federal management where oil and gas could potentially be extracted. But it is off-limits. Offshore, where another 86 billion barrels lie in wait, is also restricted. However, China, already one of our biggest competitors, drills for oil just 60 miles south of Florida.

We have the power and responsibility to do what is right, NOW.

Contact your Congressman and Senator. Remind them they work for US and we demand an end to political bickering. We must give drill for oil NOW. We must build the necessary refineries. We, the people, must remind our federal elected officials that their responsibility is to PROTECT AMERICAN INTEREST by drilling for American oil.

Click Here to Contact Senator Schumer and Senator Clinton: http://www.senate.gov/general/contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm?State=NY

Or call them at:
Senator Charles Schumer: (202) 224-6542 Senator Hillary Clinton: (202) 224-4451

Click here to find your Congressman:

http://www.house.gov/house/MemStateSearch.shtml#ny

Or Call (202) 224-3121 and ask for your representative.

State Headquarters:

486 78th Street
Ft. Hamilton Station, NY 11209
718-921-2158

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Michael Gerson, guru of evangelical compassionate conservatism, argues against Christian libertarianism. Gerson concludes that “For millennia, artists, thinkers and politicians have shaped their image of Jesus, often into a mirror image of themselves. But the goal of Christianity is to allow Him to shape us, not the other way around. And just as Jesus the leftist revolutionary is a distortion, so is Jesus the libertarian.”

I am not a libertarian but sure vote like one. What Gerson does not seem to understand is the peculiar nature of the American politics. An authentic American conservative is a libertarian constitutionalist in national politics, a wide eyed realist at the state level, and a communitarian republican at the local. Jesus did not invent our federal ideas (although I do see parallels to ecclesiastical Presbyterianism) but I do not think he could object.

Special thanks to my friend Clayton for tipping me off to the Gerson article.

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Modernity is catching up with us. With the 20th Century’s source of cheap energy no longer cheap someone got the bright idea of looking to the products of mechanized mass industrial farming to feed our insatiable hunger for cheap energy.

What men must put in their belly would now be used to feed their cars. What can you expect when so many folks refer to their shiny mechanical-jacobins as their “baby.”

Food is cheap… produced by industrialized, mechanized mass farms… lets feed it to our cars.

Enter the law of unintended consequences. World-wide food shortages are driving up the cost of feeding our real- that is human- babies. DRC readers will have noticed the sharp increase in prices at their local supermarkets. The system of mass is growing.

I am not a chicken little kind of guy. The challenges of the market will be met by new and exciting solutions. Let’s hope the solutions of the 21st century are more humane, local, and responsible than the solutions of the 20th.

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