Archive for July, 2009|Monthly archive page

The Spotlight

There is a discomfort being the son of a famous man. I remembered how I had felt in the 4th grade over all this attention when you father was giving a speech at your school, in front of the entire school. From about the age of 12, I handled the attention better, but with a blush that could not be hidden, when perhaps I wanted to hide. Or flee from the spotlight. After about the age of 18, I seemed to have escaped to discover my own personality. In another state. At the age of 18 I felt like I had begun to establish my own identity.

That blush mechanism is quite a gift. This month the spotlight was back, along with an inner restlessness. It was unsettling to be brought out of my cave for a weekend. In front of a very very large crowd. Certainly the largest crowd in the state this week. Restless, perhaps, because my metabolism no longer produces a blush.

I handled it better when I blushed. In a sense that blushing mechanism, in the quest for identity, was an inward sense of embarrassment over all that I was inheriting, with an inward sense that I was not worthy of all of this. And here was a powerlessness involved, as no one could control a blush. In a sense my recent restlessness was over the missing blush, that outward sign to the world of inner restlessness.

In a sense my recent weekend in a spotlight made me reflect at a lesson I learned at the point in my life after 10 years in the world of business. I witnessed anger one day, a redness, and I could see the anger was not actually directed at me. I remembered an awakening, not to take any of it personally. At least in the business world.

The prophet is never welcome in his hometown. I have two friends who I met in high school, both of whom went to Jesuit universities separated by 1400 miles. People I have known who had both left there hometown, established a growing identity, and came back. They both spent post graduate years at the same college. They are sons of well-known fathers.

This month, in a way perhaps that only their families now could see, their families came in conflict. It is apt to become deeply personal. In a public spotlight. Those relationships, over the state of the world.

That boy in the temple. Who stayed out of the spotlight. From the age of 12 through the age of 30. Under parents who somehow knew the importance of keeping the world away. That boy in the temple who had to take everything personally and discover some kind of response to all of it. Who had to make his own resolution, however divinely inspired. Outside of any real spotlight. Away from the stage. In a quiet place. In school.

That boy in the temple, who stayed out of the spotlight. So this son of God could find his placed in the real world. Witnessing the joy and the pain of ordinary life. And learning to take things personally, without a metabolism that produced a blush. Because he had a Father who had to take everything personally. And because he had to discover some kind of response to all of it.

Taking things personally. When so many do not to take any of it personally? Son of God, and having to take everything personally. Wow! How do you come to grips with that? And then over the state of the world.

Boys wanting to prove greatness….in games, in school, in business. Boys all trying to prove our worth. The irony was that in the process as boys were all trying to prove our worth, most of us never learned humility.

Wanting to prove greatness….how do you come to grips inside and outside the spotlight, over the state of the world? Amidst the quest for identity which could never be escaped from?

Terror Within

The war within: Evil, terror, and it causes. Islam was not about evil.

The irony in the western world that had moved away from God was the same irony of 1492 when Columbus sought a passage to India to the west so he did not have to go through territories of the Ottoman Turks. And in the current war on terror, the United States and Europe were afraid of radical components of Islam that had appealed to the poor, a component that called a people to prayer when in their world there was so much affluence and less and less organized prayer. In the current Europe Union, few people worshiped –less than 20% of the people in Belgium worshiped collectively on a weekend, as one example.

And in such an environment of nominal Christianity, Americans were willing to give up the foundation of civil liberties for what was called Homeland Security. The Patriot Act. That was the underlying conflict that no one saw in the United States –the basis for so much fear was a religion, when religion was becoming something to be feared in the west.

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The Job of a Moral Theologian

Risk Management and good moral theology: where was a moral theologian when you needed one? Risk Management was described as good judgment calls.

If you cannot control health care payments, you cannot control insurance premiums. If you could not control who could acquire the most updated MRI machine, you could not control competition. Your urban hospital was going to be tested like rural hospitals were 25 years ago. Hospitals that were being killed in this current depression, with no control over the falling reimbursement for health care. As more and more people went uninsured.

Your doctors knew that if you cannot control health care payments, you cannot control insurance premiums. Thus the health care issues of 2009, with artificial deadlines of 10 days. When costs were out of control. Because with health care, no insurance company could say no, when a health care contract was written covering health care expense, without a rationale.

Population Control. Immigration. If you could not control the population numbers, you could not control government costs. If you could not balance budgets, or have some control over the number of citizens, you could not control the economy in a competitive world economy.

Future markets. I used to work across the street from the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. In the Age of the Ascent of Money. If you talked to a future trader, you learned that actions have unexpected outcome in human affairs. Future traders were hedging bets, with option contracts. Agreed prices when the seeds are planted. Agreed prices before oil or gold was taken out of the earth. Options. Hedge Funds. Derivatives.

The uncertain futures, beyond insurance. Falling family size. The universal desire to be rich, in a nation with borders. Balanced budgets. Border that were defended against neighbors. With defense departments.

Social Security. Amidst boom and bust cycles. Population Control. Until the demographics showed falling birth rates. Where the youth would not be able to sustain the medical bills of their parents. The numbers were not there. Thus the meager reserves which would not sustain either Medicare or Social Security. In addition to the health care crisis.

“The most controversial task of moral theology is to help people live their faith in the light of the times … to help them face new questions and not just to repeat or attack” the old formulas, Mercy Sr. Margaret Farley told the National Catholic Reporter.


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Oriented. That milk in the fridge. Expiration date. It said July 5th on the plastic jug. The date today… was …..July 18. Hey! It tastes okay.

Doctors liked to begin a patient evaluation by mentioning the overall mental status of the patient. In the real world. “Oriented times three.” To this place, in this time. It was a comment on recognition of the patient’s place in history. Today. The elderly seemed all too often to lose this sense. In my view, it had a lot to do with the same situation as that milk in the fridge.

Expiration dates. That stoplight with 10 seconds to the change. The restlessness that I felt towards dates on the calendar. I was not paying much attention. To the diminishing sands of life. As if I was 15 years old.

It seems very many young people seem to be living on the hype amongst familiar friends in their own youth group, until the day that both the hype and these friends eventually lose their influence.

Spiritual health care. If as Muslims, Jews and Christians believed, to say nothing of Hindus and Bhuddists, why were so little resources directed at spiritual health? As quoted in Christless Christianity, Christian Smith has researched teen spirituality in America, noting the lack of ability today to state, examine or reflect upon their beliefs. And with the inability to articulate and communicate their ideas comes the inability to relate belief to daily life. Smith is a sociologist who expressed the working theology of the current age:
• God created the world.
• God wants people to be good, nice, and fair to each other, as taught in the Bible and most world religions.
• The central goal of life is to be happy and to feel good about oneself.
• God does not need to be particularly involved in one’s life except when needed….
• Good people go to heaven when they die.”

Smith concludes that there is little sign that those engaged in the religious socialization, those who had dedicated their own life attempting to put God into every American day life, were highly effective and successful with the majority of their young people as to the actual content of their faith. In the real world.

God in everyday life, in His role as the regulator. The regulator of the interactions among the organs which constitute the limbic-hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (LHPA), a major part of the neuroendocrine system which controls reactions. The neuroendocrine system regulates the storage and expenditure of energy. The neuroendocrine system regulates reactions to stress. The neuroendocrine system regulates the process of digestion, as well as moods and emotions. The neuroendocrine system regulates the immune system. And the neuroendocrine system regulates sexuality. The neuroendocrine system is involved in the relationship between libido and testosterone levels. God seems to be involved silently in everyday life, in His role as the regulator.

There was a demographic problem in the western world, as indicated with sky-high mortality rates among Russian men, a dwindling birth rate over the last 40 years in Spain, in Russia, in much of Europe. It was not just in Europe, but over all the Western world. A study had been released in 2006 the testosterone level in American men had declined over the last 20 years. Significantly.

I ran into 2 nieces the other night. They did not know much about family history. Oh, they had both heard the great stories. They had been at a family celebration 5 nights before. Yet they did not know of the tension along the way, which added so much drama to the celebration. Especially the youngest. She had been about 2-years old at the time. Without understanding the history, they could not understand the tension in the celebration. There had not been a lot of fairness in a relationship. Between an employer and an employee, in a fast changing world.

The neuroendocrine system operates with the release of corticotropin-releasing hormones (CRH) from the hypothalamus which is influenced by stress, by blood levels of cortisol, and by the sleep/wake cycle. Every day, the sleep/wake cycle is operating in healthy people. So reproduction of the human species is affected by who you are sleeping with, in your reproductive years, mostly by the reactions to stress within 30 to 45 minutes of waking. Cortisol rises rapidly after wakening, facilitating an adaptive phase to the world.

That one niece I had met the other night. Yeah, the one who has been living with her boyfriend. I don’t know if she knows what I know. She made some very unspecific reference at the end of a discussion to the ideals which her parents, aunts, and uncles go by. I was out of time, and did not let her carry forward to whatever depth there was in her vague comment. She had already had an education about the meaning of things in her young life that she never before recognized, as a result of an accidental meeting. The restaurant was closing.

Real people were about the neuroendocrine system operating as we speak. I half expected that my niece was going to talk about what happened when someone could not meet the standards of God. For life in the real world.

Her world. Those nieces would never know what it was that they had witnessed unless someone gave them an over view. In the real world. But they had never had an interest to ask how something had come to be, until that night.

Relationships were really about the future. The future of the world was about my part about shaping the future. It began in relationships. Who I was sleeping with. Stress levels. Who I would bring into the world. How they would be raised. And the general adaptation syndrome, with alarm reactions including the suppression of immune response, allowing the body to attempt countermeasures. It was all about how someone was oriented. Times three.

Oriented. To this place, in this time. Like that milk in the fridge.

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Wait and See

So in the case of relationships, what did she see, what was she after? In me? Or what was I after in her? Before there was sex? After the sex was over? Why did I want to marry? Two-in-one? Why?

So much of my life was about the search for meaning, but in a wait-and-see mode. And thus the aquarium where I lived, called nation, where 99% lived in the wait-and-see mode.

In the case of failed relationships. Relationships which had never really had evolved. Fault and looking for scapegoats. There was a lack of understanding, in a state with No-Fault laws on auto accidents and divorce. Why had it happened? And what about the children? Would they accept this “no-fault” world? In 10 or 20 years? Without a festering anger? How did this world come to be?

The lack of reconciliation with the past was resulting in a failure to reach an acceptance. About the world we lived in. The one filled more and more with self-promotion, with the media acting as the accelerant about these kinds of lifestyles.
What was she after? In me? And what had I failed to give? I was busy looking for the lure of work which provides my organizing purpose and identity. Like everyone in the western world, too many of us were searching for vainglorious work. Asking in a new way, in a wait-and-see mode, “Why are you doing this?”

The way people choose a profession, but the way a profession changes them in a way they probably didn’t anticipate at first. Not only did I choose the profession, but that profession began to mold me. That same point of view leads to point in time on a Friday. Today.

So in the case of a failed relationship, it was all one person’s fault? What was I doing about the failure? Living in a wait-and-see mode? Today.

So in the case of relationships, there was this inherent human urge to leave something behind, in the evolutionary process of perfection. When I was so imperfect.

Asking in a new way the old question:“Why are you doing this? Why are you here?”

The Clash

The clash. The painful moments called morning when night crossed over into day, when dreams came to an end. The clash. Of darkness and light. Of good and bad. Of beginnings and endings.

The clash. Of the increasing number of taxis, in a world where public policy now promoted mass transit. In Minneapolis, the city was giving out more medallions, licensing taxis on the streets, then ever before. It did not seem fair, to the taxi drivers who had struggled with 12 hours day. Mostly to people who came from another land. In the world with oil prices fluctuating,like some kind of state fair ride. Immigrants trying to ascend into the ranks of the elite. Amidst public policy.

The clash of people with their past. The clash of a time in baseball when a franchise tried to survive in turbulent times of free agency, when the owner had no money. The clash of 2 eras as seen in the two people inducted last Saturday into the Minnesota Twins Hall of Fame.

The clash. Coming to grips with the creative powers within…in an American world where people try to preserve their ethnic heritage. People trying to preserve their ethnic heritage as they ascend into the ranks of the elite. The clash. The clash of the past with the present. The clash of the urban with the country.

The clash of people with their past. Remembering the instruction. About the lamb that must be a year-old male… which shall “not be eaten raw or boiled, but roasted whole, with its head and shanks and inner organs. None of it must be kept beyond the next morning; whatever is left over in the morning shall be burned up. This is how you are to eat it: with your loins girt, sandals on your feet and your staff in hand, you shall eat like those who are in flight,” along with instruction how to eat the lamb in proportion to the number of persons who partake of it. “It is the Passover of the LORD.”

The clash. Of benefits and favoritism. Of health care plans tied to jobs. Why, in an age of rising unemployment, should health insurance plans be tied to employment, when health care insurance would no longer be a benefit of employment? Ideas tied to a past America, in an age when ideals seemed to have been lost. Have you read the piece by John Woo in the Wall Street Journal, where he claims the report from the inspector general ignores history and plays politics with the law? After the new report from the inspectors general of the Department of Defense, Department of Justice, Central Intelligence Agency, National Security Agency, and Office of the Director of National Intelligence, criticized the Office of Legal Counsel memos drafted by Deputy Assistant Attorney General John Yoo, the memoranda which were used to justify warrantless surveillance of American citizens. The memoranda which “raise[d] serious concerns” at Department of Justice because they omitted analysis of key cases and legal provisions and were not subject to the ordinary “rigorous peer review process.”

Obama who said in the debates last fall that health insurance was a basic right. Like free speech. A basic human right? Like the practice of religion? Or of a free press, in these times? Woe to leaders who infringe on real basic human rights. Basic human rights were dependent on budgets?

Counting the cost. Amidst those who are in flight. Amidst the struggle of good with evil. Counting the cost. The financial ones. The moral cost, in proportion to the number of persons who partake of it. The struggle of love, amidst people trying to preserve their ethnic heritage as they ascend into the ranks of the elite.

I always had wondered about the candidates position about rationing, during the last election. I just hoped the discussion would involve gasoline, not health care.

The clash. Of Democrats with Republicans. Of the rich with the poor. Of life with death. And the consequential pain. When dreams came to an end.

The survival of the fittest. When we were all created equal. And how to eat the lamb in proportion to the number of persons who partake of it.

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Tippy Canoe

Global warming. Cairo. Kyoto.

Since 1994, the world population of 550 million cars in 15 years had grown to a number around 880 million.

The desire to be mobile, with 330 million more cars, was leading to traffic jams. It came from too much wealth, and the lack of a tax system to regulate the dominance of the automobile. Or boats for that matter.

Financial fate. What were your fears about the man-made readjustment since September 2008 to the free market system? What were your fears about the world’s financial fate and market conditions? The single greatest risk in the equilibrium of everyday life remains a seismic shift in currency.

This period was the most affluent time in human history. Amidst a time of world-wide strengthened family planning programs, with rising female literacy rates world-wide, the world has seen over the past 30 years corresponding declines in fertility and population growth rates, with dramatic increases in the use of contraception. At the International Conference on Population and Development in Cairo in 1994, parties pledged a tripling of funding for reproductive health programs in developing countries, with leader seeing the link between population and carbon emissions. I am uncertain if the financial repercussions of wealthier people with smaller families were ever addressed.

In 1997, the Kyoto Protocol attempted to negotiate goals of greenhouse gas limitation with nations. Public policy with a focus on population and green house gases ignored what the human would do with more money. Have you been to Bangkok or Manila in the last 8 years? Or Minneapolis?

Prior to September 2008, inefficiencies would be naturally resolved in the free-market system by supply and demand. In the era of consumer spending and conspicuous consumption. The latest economic crash seemed to have taken care of family planning programs for cars for now, better than anything than those government leaders could come up with in Kyoto, Japan. Somehow it was expected that market conditions, with the artificial supports imposed, would work to avoid an immediate collapse of the entire economic structure for the remainder of the year.

This morning I heard a priest from the Congo ask for currency, for his people of a nation that has seen 5 million people die amidst the strife of civil war. Five million. There were a lot of orphans left in such a place, in a world about as kind as it had been to Jews in the late 1930s.

Saving people in a storm, when we all were threatened. In tough times, words take on new meaning. People come together better. I have never heard the deep echo more clearly in a voice than I did this morning. “Behold! The Lamb of God! Who takes away the sins of the world.” The echo in the voice of a witness at a place with voluntary and involuntary contraction in the fertile ground to slaughter, with a ringing left from his voice in my ear.

Holding it all together. Mortar. In earthquakes. That priest from the Congo. With 5 million dead, asking for money for orphanages. The hell he has witnessed. Lamb of God! Those sins of the world. The destroyed churches and hospitals. And the children now growing up.

Redemption, and who to save? With a world population increased by even more than the 550 million cars over he last 15 years.

A currency holds a nation together. Social mood and risk appetites determine the way we live our lives. And our financial fate. The economy and society as a whole assumes more risk in the era post conspicuous consumption. When banks are rescued, as a result of the path of any attempted repair.

Currency markets can punish the savers who had tried to prepare for the current crisis. A meaningful currency move could significantly devalues the U.S. dollar, and it does become increasingly likely when artificial supports are imposed to rescue banks. Currency in the current fiat system is based upon solely confidence. That banks are solvent. That there is value to this paper.

Would the age of austerity affect a solution to overall creation, addressing what is called global warming?

Jack Miles had written about the years that God had spent in solitude. Alone. God, dealing with His greatness. But now calling us together. Amidst the sorrowful mysteries, behold the age of austerity, with people coming together! Without the traffic jams, but with a greater number that made up the teeming masses. God, testing humankind with each generation.

Redemption, and who to save?

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This Land Was Made for You and Me

This land is your land. This land is my land. From California. To the New York island. From the redwood forest, to the gulf stream waters. This land was made for you and me.

Belief and the meaning of words. If you were 21 years old, you heard a lot of discussion in your lifetime about the meaning of words. By presidents. One president told the nation he had never had “sex” with that woman. The next president struggled with the word “torture.”

The news media likes to purport that their job in news was to try to present all sides of an issue. The ones presented on a silver platter by spin doctors, anyway.

Torture: Last week there was a show on National Public Radio. About their use of the word “torture.” NPR doesn’t refer to waterboarding as “torture.” Instead NPR News uses the term “enhanced” or “harsh interrogation techniques” rather than “torture” to describe a tactic known as waterboarding, like collaborators in a coverup.

Meaning. Words. Like torture. In this society ultimately we vote for what we believe to be the truth . . . Truth defined by words. Etymology was the study of wordistry.

And so that last Pew survey. The connection of “Generation Next” and that last Pew survey. Kids who had grown up in the most affluent times ever in human history. Under Clinton. Under Bush. The youngest generation’s level of religious commitment is currently lower than any other age cohort’s. So what was their connection concerning morality?

The void. What would be filled in over time by these people — the kids who had grown up under Clinton, under Bush. After hearing all of the wordistry, who did not really believe in anything. Except the technology.

So that last Pew survey. About a generation’s level of religious commitment to morality, concerning clear guidelines about good and evil. About sex and fertility. Over life and death. Like over torture . . . forced famine . . . Crucifixions . . .Holocausts? About real live torture? It was a bit scary. What was the connection of leaders, if not leadership, in the most affluent times ever in human history, to the next generation?

The Haunted. Those post war days. Those days after the collapse of a system. Like in the republics of the post Soviet Unions. Looking for meaning. Of life. In children. In babies.

Belief. Russia’s demographic problem was the dwindling Russian birth rate. There are extremely high mortality rates among Russian men aged 20 to 40, with birth rates falling to West European levels. Reporter Nikita Mironov wrote how Russian women cry that there aren’t any men. Paul Goble, a specialist on ethnic and religious questions in Eurasia, comments in Window on Eurasia about the Nikita Mironov article in “Komsomolskaya Pravda.” Combined with the sky-high mortality rates among Russian men, the birthrate in Russia has fallen over the last 40 years to well below the replacement level of 2.15 children per woman per lifetime. The Russian demographic problems include extremely high mortality rates among Russian men of child-bearing age — rates largely the result of alcohol consumption and drug abuse, which are putting the brakes on any increase in fertility rates. According to Nikita Mironov, of the 22 million men aged 20 to 40, 2.5 million are drug addicts, 2.1 million are registered alcoholics, and 700,000 more are in prison. With no mention how alcoholics are blocked from fathering a baby, Nikita Mironov concludes that 5.3 million potential fathers of 22 million are not as available for fatherhood. Then there are the unregistered alcoholics. The statistics seem to support his conclusion. Nikita Mironov “If in the West, women do not want to give birth in order to live as they want, Russian women cry with one voice, ‘There aren’t any men.’”

Belief. That this land was your land. This land was my land. From St. Petersberg to Vladivostok. Or from California. To the New York Island. When California was now essentially bankrupt. However it had happened.

Etymology was a bit scary. So was that last Pew survey about the sense of belonging. A language which conveyed a sense of belonging. As a people made the attempt to pass on that culture. In the stories and song about the sense of belonging. Here. Through fertility.

In life, those joyful mysteries were inevitably followed by the sorrowful ones. The comedy. The tragedy. Until you came to accept it all. Acceptance was about celebrating meaning. Those glorious mysteries which came out of the search for meaning which came out of words.

For the land which WAS and IS made for you and me.

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The human struggle with identity. There was both an individual struggle and a communal struggle with this identity. Now more than ever.

I am nothing except what I have absorbed from my father. I knew what he liked, how he thought. He had passed on to me what was important in life. I share within me a part of his identity. All that was important. And a lot of what he liked and how he thought.

I spend a lot of time at ballparks, like my dad. With a certain edge. Last night I was asked a question about baseball. I was asked a question about the umpires by someone my own age. The questioner did not know the answer, but attempted to offer an answer. That answer was not close to the truth. I too bluntly asked what good it was to give an answer when you really had no idea.

I did not like the local broadcasters who purported to know everything. It made me think how poor the current generation of broadcasters were, as they tried to project a certain image. There was never a discussion on air about issues like this one, developing umpires. Are crews kept together season to season? The crew chief’s job was to work to make the rookie umpire better. The crew chief’s job was to make this an efficient 4-man crew. What I did not know was, since the day that the commissioner’s office had allowed National League umpires to integrate with American League umpires, whether these were one year gigs? Or whether the crews were dispersed each year with all new crews? If they ever get to keep working for a while with those partners who became a friend? A young umpire was nothing except what he had absorbed from his crew. And then what he did with it.

The new archbishop in New York City was quoted in February 2009 in the New York Times that a bishop’s success as a Catholic leader was to be judged in the numbers who elect to marry in the church, who attend Sunday Mass, or who join the priest or sisterhood. There were not many successful popes or archbishops anywhere, in an American perspective, based on this measuring stick, over the last 20 to 30 years. Statistics show that 25% of all Catholics have left the Church of Rome for another church. Surely those 25% were not attending Mass. And the rate of Catholics becoming priests or nuns had fallen off dramatically over the past 40 years.

One day the crew chief would die and in baseball, he had to be replaced.

All of this was a part of the human struggle with identity. That “becoming.” There was an excitement in all of this “becoming.” In the formation. Of this communal and individual “becoming.” Since I am nothing except what I have absorbed from my father and my mother.

Once a year I went away to this spot of Lake DeMontreville to look at what I had “become.” In that life journey, to actually stop to hear the “How’s it going?” question. To read those Genesis stories, where God asked, “Where are you Adam?” After he just ate the apple.

The journey. With its starts and stops. This year there was a retreat “master.” The crew chief, as it were, amidst the human struggle with identity. That retreat master’s opening remarks were “Pilgrim, there is no way. The way is made by going.”

My struggle. The pope’s struggle. In the journey. With an edge. In the simpleness of the morning, I had started once again on this “becoming” process, to grasp the reality of the earth. And to figure out how I fit into this story.

The human struggle, an individual struggle and a communal struggle, with identity. “Pilgrim, there is no way. The way is made by going.

In the Beginning

Americans owed the celebration of the 4th of July to a printer. That was how important newspapers and the printed word were to this country. The PRINTED word. The Declaration of Independence kept in the National Archives in Washington. The one with the 57 signatures. Composed on July 2nd, with a decision to make the declaration known to the public. After the delegates gave the agreed on statement to a printer, those lamentations to King George, the force of publication of this declaration had carried the July 4th date.

Americans owed the celebration of the 4th of July to a printer. To believe that a nation came into being on a particular day in 1776 is to ignore all that had gone in the past. The past wrongdoing. Conveying a belief of a need to amend wrongdoing, there was this Declaration of Independence signed, sealed but not really delivered. To King George.

Wrongdoing. Conveying a belief. In order to form a more perfect uinon, people came together because of wrongdoing. The United States was all about fairness. “Unalienable” rights. Once upon a time there was such a strong belief in the need to safeguard a unity, about what I called inalienable rights. Just printed.

Peter de Bolla writes today in the L.A. Times about an architecture of belief which had the power to change the world. May it also be remembered that the act of declaration in 1776 that created, founded, and continues to create a nation was based more on the action behind the words. Nowadays the world does not need more words. Rather it needs the resolve that went behind the words of the Declaration of Independence.

“Self-evident” truth. As to those signatures of people who pledged their lives, fortunes and sacred honor, there were added later signatures of men who had not even been in the room on July 2nd. Maybe truth that had not been so apparent to be self-evident that day. New congressional delegates whose signatures were added later, once there was a Congress.

Ah, politicians and the bandwagon affect! Independence Day had never been a declared federal holiday by Congress until 1941.

Peter de Bolla wrote, as the Colonies were at war in 1777, a small and very low-key celebration was mounted, the members of the Continental Congress did decide to note July 4 by not meeting, and everyone went to church.

A toast! To the newscopy just printed. To a free press. By those who searched for the truth. Heroic as any soldier. A toast to those conveying a belief in the ideals of government. The ones which shall not perish from the earth. Facts now presented to be read as “self-evident” truth. And actually purchased by some “of the people,” for fifty cents. A toast! To the ideals of the people, by the people, for the people. A toast to those who pledged their careers, lives, fortunes and sacred honor, with high resolve that the ideals of the nation which have always been here – and that the people under God, shall have a new birth of freedom — and that the ideals of government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.

It has never been more difficult on these shores to be a worker in the news business than in 2009. Americans owed this celebration of the 4th of July to a printer, who posted a date of the printing. This holiday was all about what had gone on in one moment in time, two days before.