||Who we are & Mail
To see Kabuki - January 23, 2012
Grandmother - July 4, 2012
July 4, 2012, I report on my trip to the Idaho Republican
convention and in my quest to find Mitt Romney's grandma.
The convention was glorious. It was held in Twin Falls, Idaho, a very beautiful anywhere in the USA type town having all the qualities of rural Western America. The main assembly hall was in the College of Southern Idaho arts center. The 44 counties of Idaho had gathered with their Republican organizations to elect new officers for the next two years and to select the electoral college and the delegates they would be be will be sending to Tampa Bay, Florida for the national Republican Convention. Gov. Butch Otter and his wife, Lori were there as well as Congressman Raul Labrador, Senator Jim Risch, and Tom Luna, Idaho's Director of Education.
One other star on the horizon will be Lori Otter, a professional teacher with her Masters of Education from Brigham Young University and the young bride of the popular Butch Otter, current governor of Idaho. Butch and Lori Otter will be teaming up with Tom Luna to complete education reform by enabling local educators with the best in technology to provide total opportunity for all students to take any course offered in the state, regardless of how large or small a community they reside. Virtual courses can be taught in the classroom or in the home, depending on the capabilities of the school system to provide lab services. The job is already half complete.
to offer tenure for teachers has been eliminated, also "first
in last out" rules for dismissal are no longer in effect.
Three bonus tiers are available for teachers who teach beyond
the call of duty and excel in their teaching skills. Under
certain circumstances, some teachers will be able to make
$85,000 a year in bonuses beyond their normal salary. The next
step will be decided by voters under a proposition called Yes,
Yes, Yes for Students. It is a sweeping reform that will
change the way the teachers' union influence the education
system. Naturally, the teachers' union seems to be the chief
opponent to this plan.
Idaho's educational Internet to provide curriculum to every student, whether at school or at home is already designed and installed. In the next few years, computers will be available for students to use in school and to take home. With my knowledge of what is to happen in the society of computer users, it will not be necessary to buy a computer for every student in the school system. The delivery of education will be clearly available to the majority of students and network services will be in general use within the next few years. This means that anybody with a network connected television either by cable or by other network services will be able to participate at any time in classroom activity or in homework or project assignments.
Within a very short time, the dreams of Philo T. Farnsworth will be realized. His invention of television, demonstrated as a high school project in Idaho many years ago will come to fruition. He dreamed of his invention being used for the universal education of mankind. I feel very good about that, but there is more.
Many Idaho Republicans were worried when the 2012 caucus was held in March this year. Many Ron Paul supporters were admitting privately that they were under oath to continue to hold their obligation to support Ron Paul until Ron Paul himself released them from that obligation. It seemed like there was not much difference between a libertarian and an anarchist. The rules of the caucus were clear. Any candidate that had 50% of the caucus votes +1 was declared the winner of that caucus. Consequently, the same rules were true of all the caucus groups in the state. The conclusion was that all Republican delegates to the national convention would support Mitt Romney on the first ballot. The militant nature of Ron Paul enthusiasts was still a concern as we met recently to organize the Republican Party for the next two years. Vocal tea party activists had already thrown their support behind Mitt Romney, enthusiastically. Many of the participants in the Twin Falls convention were well known Ron Paul supporters. The result of of the convention was very similar to the Three Musketeers, "one for all, and all for one". A week before convention Ron Paul had issued a policy statement to his supporters to confirm to them that he appreciated their continuing support through the convention. It should be noted that Ron Paul and Mitt Romney have been very sweet and civil to each other and have not caused any dissension at this point, However, Ron Paul is still a candidate to be considered at the Florida convention. All other candidates have resigned. I made a private bet with a close friend of mine about the results of the Florida convention. The bet will be, since we are both Mormons, our families will have dinner together after the convention. The payoff of the bet concerns whether Ron Paul will be significantly involved in the choice of vice president and the payoff will be: "Who pays for dinner?" Will he, or his son Rand Paul be the vice president?
The Mystery of Mitt Romney's Grandma
After a brief photographic shoot of Shoshone Falls, it was off to Montpelier, Idaho. It has been rumored that Mitt Romney's roots, in addition to being in Mexico are also in Idaho. Mitt is supposed to have had a grandmother in Montpelier, Idaho. We went there, checked into a small motel that advertised Wi-Fi, but in fact had none for all practical purposes. I could find no one in town that knew anything about Mitt Romney's grandmother. The next day we proceeded to Paris Idaho, the county seat. I searched land and marriage records and asked people but could find nothing. Nobody knew who Mitt's grandmother was. Exercising serendipity, which is my favorite vacation activity, I decided to go through Logan, Utah as an alternate route back to Boise, Idaho.
My trip to
Paris had been to photograph the architecture of the historic
building called the Paris Tabernacle and it was a successful
shoot. The building, built in the late 1800s, was a
magnificent piece of architecture and guided tours are
available six days a week. A similar building built about the
same time was the Logan Tabernacle. After photographing the Logan Tabernacle, I wanted to go inside
but the front door was locked. Walking around to the back, I
found an open door. After thoroughly photographing the
interior of the building and getting very good pictures, I
wandered to the basement and saw the first human beings
inhabiting the building. It was actually about 50 people busy
at work in a library of genealogical books and records. I had
stumbled into the local Family History Center but there were
no signs to indicate that it even existed in the building.
After thinking for a moment that there are no such things as
coincidences in the Mormon way of thinking, I sought out a
couple of gentlemen talking near the Administrative office who
wore the familiar black badges of Latter Day Saint workers.
"I'm looking for Mitt Romney's grandmother." I said. "Can you help me?"
"I don't think she's here."
I told him what I knew already, and they said, "Well, let's look it up."
minutes, one of them said, "Look, here it is, Alma Robison was born in
Montpelier, Idaho. Not only that, she came to Logan and
married, and became Alma LaFount. Her daughter, Lenore
LaFount was born right here in Logan, Utah. Lenore married
George Romney when she was a student at the University of Utah
in Salt Lake City."
My search for Mitt Romney's grandmother was a success and I was very happy. How far was it from Logan, Utah to Boise, Idaho? It was over 320 miles. We got home in Boise, Idaho at 10 PM after a hard five-hour drive.
It was a good trip in every way. I'd collected over 500 excellent photographs and found Mitt's Grandma, just where I thought she was. It was curious that no one I talked to in Idaho knew the facts of that until I accidentally stumbled into the basement of the Logan Tabernacle on the way home.
Marriage for Dummies - May 31, 2012
There is a great deal
of misunderstanding about just what marriage is in the
political world. Since I don't know whether you are a child or
a liberal, I will start with the fundamentals. Forgive me if
you do not recognize which group you may be in. I am an old
man and forget that my vocabulary may not seem appropriate to
you as an individual. Patience on your part would be
appreciated. You will undoubtedly recognize everything I say
as something you already know.
There will be some who want to look at this in a political way and some will consider the religious aspects. Others will want to consider the legal and constitutional aspects and I will discuss those as well.
Remember, if you can, your birth parents. One of them was a man and one was a woman. If this is your memory, you are definitely in the majority. We are the human beings amongst the living creatures. It takes two humans to create another human or as we sometimes call it: a baby. Babies generally come in two types, male and female. You may already know this, but I just wanted to make sure we are starting from the same place.
Why? If you are a religious person you might say, "Because God made it that way". If you are scientific person and prone to arguing you might say, "Yes, but not worms and amoebas". Stick with me on this. That doesn't count as a gotcha.
To clarify the concept, man + woman = baby. Let us call this a birth event.
Marriage is not required for this event to occur. In some populations it happens more often than there are marriages. We discover in nature that when a sperm cell from a male joins with an egg cell from a female a new birth event is a possibility. As a general rule, this possibility occurs for about four days out of every 28 days in a woman's child-bearing years. This time is generally defined as between nine and 50 years of age, but may vary from that. The possibility of a birth event being triggered depends on the health of the male and female involved. Approximately 40 weeks after that event a live baby may be produced by the female. Several things may happen that could prevent a live birth. Sometimes the female is injured and the baby does not live. Sometimes the baby does not form perfectly and dies before birth. Sometimes the mother will decide to kill the baby before it is born. Most people of religious persuasion find this objectionable.
Directing sperm to an ovum is called insemination. The joining of sperm and egg is called impregnation. The emergence of a new human being from the female is called birth. Termination of a human being before birth is called abortion. Some religious people call this murder. Not all people are in agreement with these terms.
The birth event happens because of a number of reasons. Starting from the least desirable, there is rape. Historically rape has been the reason for the birth event in times of war. Warriors overcome another nation and attempt to defile the nation by impregnating women to shame them and the nation which they represent. There is no desire to express affection for the female nor to care for the offspring which it produces. Rape often happens in civilized society where irresponsible males attempt to impregnate women for their own satisfaction.
There are a wide number of reasons why unintentional pregnancies occur and can be attributed both to male and female behavior. It is believed that males have a greater urge to consummate the act. Females have been trained by their parents to resist such activity and are convinced it is a good thing to do. It is no wonder that the use of alcohol and drugs which produce feel-good behavior sometimes create a birth event. Civilized society relies on religious belief and social training to regulate activities in this area. As a general rule a female carrying a child may be compromised in her ability to survive and gather food. In addition caring for other children and carrying a child is further compromised. As a survival procedure, it is best for a male who will not have to carry the child to take over the responsibilities in providing food and shelter.
Hopefully you have not been turned off by the discussion so far. Many people have decided that the birth event is the desired result. For those, they may be considering marriage or may have already done that.
Marriage is a popular subject in political circles at this time. In examining the history of the birth event, it will become obvious that no birth has ever existed where a male and a male have been combined or when a female and a female have been combined. Examination of family histories generally indicate that a male and a female are the only combination that produce birth.
In American society, rights and privileges are sometimes associated with the statute of marriage. Up until this time the United States Constitution has not qualified rights and privileges as being related to marriage, race, age, or sexual persuasion. Certain laws have suggested that certain activities such as home ownership or care and responsibility for disabled member of a relationship should be qualified by marriage. In order to justify constitutional rights, such laws must be changed to allow people who have economic or emotional connections of a committed nature to have survival rights or care and visitation rights for those whom they have selected to live. There is an objection by some to use the term marriage to describe this relationship. Marriage describes the relationship in which there is the possibility of producing a new human being and/or responsibility for another human being. Adoption is a process by which a dependent person can be included in a family responsible unit.
Business units enjoy the privilege of organizing a Corporation. Some states allow the privilege of creating a civil union. Currently there is an imposition in the case of marriage and civil union to limit the relationship to two individuals. Some civilizations allow that the marriage unit may be more than two people. In many cases, the male is the main component of the unit. Many places in the United States legislate against the concept of polygamy; which is generally described as one man and more than one woman. There may be as many as 50,000 polygamist marriages within the United States. There are millions of these marriages in the Islamic world. History records many polygamist marriages in the Scriptures. One person revered by most of the Judeo-Christian world is Abraham, who was a polygamist.
Entering into a marriage may or may not produce a new human being. Both monogamous or polygamist marriages can produce new offspring. One night stands and bars may also produce offspring but is not generally codified by the law.
This chapter only establishes the first premise of marriage. Marriage describes an agreement between one male and one female on the responsibilities of producing support and care for each other and any children produced by the union.
Pairing, Coupling or Incorporating, what is your choice? Chatper 2
Any two people may be coupled or paired. This has no qualifications for age or sex. Those who are LGBT may take note that we are talking to them as well as any others that fall into the category other than male and female breeding units.
As a start to creating nomenclature, consider partners, companions, lovers, and the collective term committed. The misuse of the term marriage is a hot button for the majority of people in our society. The desires for others to claim the title is an affront to their sensibilities. Those who do so in spite of the knowledge in this can be considered troublemakers. Of course if you fall outside the definition of married, you may not even realize what you are doing to the feelings of others. You have a full right to the protections and privileges under our law to enjoy the same benefits as married people, but for that, the search for a new term which is not inflammatory is useful. Help me if you will.
You can be assured that others are sympathetic to your needs but are protective of their own rights as well. I do not know that I am wise enough to come up with a solution on this, but will try to make suggestions.
In many cultures, a man and woman will draw up a contract concerning their relationship at the time they get married. My wife and I did that in spite of the fact we were first married by civil ceremony, and then years later in a religious ceremony. Our contract took weeks to negotiate and codify. We outlined our intentions, our hopes, and our declaration of commitment. It stands as a framed document in a prominent place in our home. We actually married ourselves, standing alone on a platform in the Palace of Fine Arts in San Francisco under the great dome. We prompted and repeated each line of our vows by memory before witness holding the script and a clerk of the court for San Francisco. There was no church or state authority, only the clerk who witnessed the certificate filed in the state of California. All our friends and family were present and we enjoyed a magnificent reception at the Century Club of California. This happened exactly 27 years ago and the same could be conducted for any persons wanting to celebrate their union.
In our current systems of laws a man must discard a wife in order to take another. It may be difficult for some people to understand, but the affection for the previous wife may still exist and legally the responsibility for caring for offspring from an earlier wife may still exist. That would be easy to understand if the previous wife were not there because of death. I have reflected on this thought and coined the term "the one and only true love syndrome". It brings to my mind the behavior of the praying mantis and the black widow spider. Human feelings do not always conform to that concept. In our society when a person takes another partner without the permission of his existing partner it is considered a breach. The religious concept is called adultery. The penalty for not abandoning the first wife and taking a second wife is called bigamy in many states. In certain societies adding additional spouses to a family unit is only permitted with the consent of the first in the relationship. Considering that some couples are still bound to each other by law and did not wish to be, they still have their options. Considering that other couples who do not want to disrupt existing families want to be together, there should be a way for them to work these things out.
Family Synergy is a term used in some communities in California to describe the incorporation of other family members in a unit larger than two. These are sometimes referred to as corporate families. I have known of several such instances. The concept of jealousy is not as clearly defined as most people would understand. A serious study of the classical corporate marriage of Abraham, Sarah and Hagar would indicate that there was mixed feelings that needed to be resolved. What started out to be a good and acceptable idea for Sarah turned out to be a source of jealousy which if it had been bridled would've produced a different world for us today. How often does this conflict exist in our society today?
I have in my family history several instances of polygamous marriages. The original incident was with Erastus Bingham. His first wife bore him children and four more wives he cared for in their old age. One of his sons, Nephi Bingham, took two wives who were sisters to each other and bore a total of 26 children. He maintained two homes in direct proximity with each other and there was peace and harmony in the entire family. Today, the Bingham family lists over 5,000 members.
The exact number is unknown but in the state of Utah alone there are between 10,000 and 100,000 polygamous families. They are prosperous and productive and have little conflict with the law for criminal activity. Some provide their own schooling and some attend public schools. One of the major movements westward occurred in the mid-1800s as a refuge from laws that did not permit polygamy. In spite of the fact that they had moved thousands of miles in adverse weather where some did not survive, they were pursued by the US government and many of their male leaders were imprisoned under laws that were enacted during the Exodus. The leader of the Mormon Church declared in 1884 that no more polygamous marriages would be consummated and those who already had established were directed to leave the country once again and establish nine new colonies in northern Mexico. Twenty eight years later, a Mexican Revolution caused the Mormon families to have to relocate back to the United States and dispersed throughout the country. Most had stopped engaging in polygamous marriages but some had continued the practice under dissident leaders who settled in outlying areas in border localities. They maintained a low profile 40 years. If any laws need to be changed concerning the rights of those who marry it would be for this religious minority that produced the candidate for the United States in the year 2012.
The original religious
institution that fostered these historic families describes
marriage as a union between one man and one woman. Every
married couple should have a contract that describes the
nature of their relationship. The question is, can one person
in the relationship enter into another relationship at the
same time or must they dissolve the current relationship
before doing so. An analysis of that proposition reveals that
it is a destructive choice to do so. It is more productive to
maintain the original obligations and requirements for care of
the offspring than the dissolve it. Is such a choice
People having polygamous marriages have been waiting patiently for 160 years. LGBT community should consider when asking for legislation to protect their groups that these people should be included in the mix.
So, you fall into this category. You have found a compatible person and want to have a nice wedding like your parents had. Some states will permit that and others won't. In any case you do not have rights from one state to another unless there is some constitutional provision to give you universal rights. There are several areas that need to be worked on. Some corporate and civil agreements can be transferred from state to state. Marriage seems to fall in its own special category. It would be highly advantageous for LGBT persons to be able to have rights anywhere they choose to live. There are some areas of the country that will never be permitted and the likelihood of a constitutional amendment is very very slim. Enterprising attorneys will find it profitable to establish something like family trusts and personal corporations to solve the problem, but attempts to define such relationships under the umbrella of marriage is sure to meet with great resistance. There is nothing that prohibits you from having a wedding cake and dressing for a special occasion and even using recognized authorities within the community to verbally display your vows before your friends and loved ones. Medical institutions will have to recognize members of the trust as being responsible persons in case of emergencies in hospitalization situations. You can do something right now to assure your happiness.
Already some people, libertarians Mormons, Muslims and other minority faiths have complained that the federal government should not have control over marriage. Marriage is a significant holy communion to many. Only those with authority in their belief system should be permitted to conduct these marriages. Amongst Mormons there are significant times when a civil ceremony will be held within a state to create records and opportunities for members of the family who are not part of that religious belief to participate. Then the same marriage is conducted under religious circumstances under authority that they respect. This problem has been solved for those people but for others it is still an issue. A prominent example of this taking place is when Mitt Romney married his wife Anne civilly in one area before both families and then traveled to Salt Lake City to conduct the marriage that they believed was the significant ceremony in a Holy Temple dedicated for that purpose.
A little ingenuity and
the LGBT community can allow all to enjoy the benefits they
desire. Do not let this problem be a divisive issue used by
politicians to their own desires and ends.
To right all these wrongs at the federal level has the unintended consequences of putting all polygamist relationships along with gay and lesbian accommodations. Polygamists have been standing in line waiting for restitution for 150 years. Requests for gay and lesbian marriage has been very recent.
It's déjà vu all over
again - May 29, 2012
Ignoramus is an old guy and as an old guy and I'm seeing things I've seen before. In my younger days, when I didn't know any better, I used to sneak over the border and visit Juarez nightclubs. I remember an old master of ceremonies in one of the night clubs who was popular with locals and tourists. Some of the regulars that came would ask him to do routines about how to play the game of golf and such things. Today's fans might go to a political rally and hope that the comedian would talk about the "dog on the roof" or "the steel company that went bust". They would have seen the star strut across stage with his hand raised, smiling at the audience and waiting for the applause to die out, then he would've built up to the story and after making a pregnant pause before delivering the smutty punch line would tell his story and besmirch his political competitor. Such behavior, demeanor, and pregnant pause timing that is practiced by even today's political characters just brings back the memory of this old tired comic. It is as if he's been resurrected and I'm an old man reminiscing about the good old days. It is déjà vu. I can tell you what is going to happen next. Some of the new things that I will relate depend on the experience I've had with watching Wily Coyote try to defeat that rascally roadrunner.
What is an ignoramus?
The source of the word ignoramus is from the common Latin dating before the Christian era. Its exact meaning is “We don’t know”. Earlier expressions of the meaning were probably associated with a quick raise of the shoulders and a roll of the eyes.
Ignoramus is an elitist word dating from the
time King James ordered an English translation of the
Bible which at the time was only available in Latin.
Comedy clubs existed in King James time, but they called
it university theatre.
to get a historic definition on the word, Ignoramus.
In this politically correct world, it is hard to find appropriate pejorative words to describe stupid people in politics. I hope to be able to provide you with the proper tools for this endeavor. In political propaganda the excessive use of adjectives gives the plot away far in advance of the actual presentation of any issue. The vocabulary of the left wing ignoramus does little to conceal the ulterior motives of the wicked, satanic perpetrator. Whoops, see what I mean?Write an article or letter and we will add your thoughts to this site.