Often discerning men find themselves dismayed by the reasoning presented by parties in an argument. That is not to say that there are only two sides to an argument, but in the manner of adversarial combat, war and legal cases, in the philosophical tradition of disputed questions, things seem to resolve themselves into two camps. From my own experience both sides are often wrong, or only partially right, or right for the wrong reasons, or wrong for the right reasons.
In the disposition of our character, we are either moving closer to truth or we are moving away from it. The mind holds no static relationship to the verities. Men are either pulling closer to the eternal, good, true and beautiful or they are flying deeper into absurdity, like planets wandering out of orbit into a void.
*also see Part I: Leap of Faith
I am decidedly persuaded that truth matters. I am decidedly convinced that a property of truth is that it adheres fully only to true things, which is to say that truth does not adhere to things that are false. The more truth we know, the more truth we are prepared to receive. The more true things we perceive, the more likely it is that we are alert to the presence of error in our judgment.
By John Snyder
With the apparent front-runner status of Mitt Romney as the Republican Candidate for President, Bible- believing Americans are returning again to the same question that confronted them four years ago: does Mormonism constitute a chasm which Christians cannot bridge in good faith.
When I was a little boy, I had bad dreams. All of us do. I dreamt of being chased by monsters, giant scaly beasts with heavy striding legs and huge teeth. I still remember one particular vivid dream where I had hidden myself beneath my bed where I was certain the monster could not possibly know where I was. Yet, I could feel the monster step onto the springs over me and begin to push through the mattress to devour me.
Some of us say we are afraid—afraid as we were the day after 9-11. We are afraid that Obama and his new plan for America means the death knell of liberty in our country.
But I was never afraid on 9-11. Nor am I afraid now. You see, 9-11 made me angry. Righteously angry. And so like in those dark days, Obama does not scare me either. He is stirring to life an urge to resist. He has pulled from the contented, distracted man, a fiery resolution to fight back in the name of everything that I love.
I am not motivated by fear. I am resolutely summoned by invincible love.
In the shadow of the abyss that has presently opened before us, there are premonitions of death, a cold wind that carries the stench of putrefaction into the nostrils of fearful Americans; it is a distant whisper that all is lost. Is this the death knell of the Great Republic? Is this the end of the Last Best Hope? There is much talk now, on the political right and among leaders, and commentators who should know better—talk of Nullification—of attorneys general ignoring the law, as did the South during the Civil Rights Movement, as did the Confederacy in 1861. No thought of Nullification may properly reside in a patriotic American.
Allow me to test some ideas by means of a kind of thought experiment. Image that I was to sit down with a group of Chinese Communist leaders. And imagine that I was to ask them—off the record—whether it was a good policy or not for the United States to undertake massive social spending in the midst of a deep recession. Imagine further that I was to ask these socialists whether accumulating debt for “healthcare reform,” and undertaking trillion dollar deficits would harm America productivity. What do you imagine a boardroom full of Red Chinese Economic Wonks would answer?
As usual, the US is desiring to do the right thing in the wrong way.
With the recent political embarrassments in Afghanistan and Iraq, we are now faced with the unpleasant consequences of having undertaken nation building before having fully defeated our enemies.
After the Second Battle of Newbury in 1644, (a pivotal battle during the English Civil War), it became clear that some commanders in the Parliamentary Army which had been formed to preserve ancient English liberties against the encroachment of authoritarian power, were only fighting in a half-hearted way.
It was after this battle, that Oliver Cromwell and other great Puritan captains realized that the Charles I, King of England and Scotland, had been intentionally allowed to escape almost certain defeat. Some Parliamentary soldiers in high places were not fighting for victory so much as a political compromise that would return Charles to the throne of England, with only modest revisions of his power status quo ante bellum.