Category Archives: Current Events

Lessons about Trump and Trade by Dan Mitchell

Lessons about Trump and Trade

Like President Reagan, I believe in free trade rather than protectionism.

So you won’t be surprised that I agree with the message in this video

To elaborate, one of the big lessons of the Trump era is that he undermined his good policies – such as tax reform – by imposing higher taxes on global trade.

Sadly, he didn’t realize that a “trade deficit” is largely an irrelevant statistic. Indeed, it’s merely the flip side of having a capital surplus.

To state the obvious, it’s not a bad thing when foreigners decide they want to invest in the United States economy. Heck, it’s a good thing, a sign of economic strength.

Professor Douglas Irwin of Dartmouth made the same point, and many additional points, in a column for the Wall Street Journallate last year.

After four years, what have we learned? Many things, but especially that old economic truths still have value: Tariffs don’t reduce the trade deficit. …Economists have long pointed out that the trade deficit is driven by macroeconomic factors, particularly international capital flows. …The merchandise trade deficit was $864 billion in 2019, more than $100 billion higher than in 2016. …Tariffs are paid by consumers, destroy jobs and hurt the economy. Mr. Trump insisted that China would pay for the 15% to 25% duties that he imposed on $300 billion of its exports. In fact, the tariffs were passed on to American consumers, who paid more… Take steel. Higher prices might have saved some jobs in the steel industry, but..steel protection is a job-destroying policy. Economists at the Federal Reserve found that the steel and aluminum tariffs reduced overall employment in manufacturing by 75,000 workers.

But destroying jobs was just one negative effect of protectionism.

We also got more corruption, as the Wall Street Journal opined.

…it’s time to point out one unsightly effect of the Trump tariffs: expanding the D.C. swamp. …As Mr. Trump’s tariffs began to bite, Congress sent hundreds of letters to the USTR, supporting specific tariff exclusions. …Rep. Steny Hoyer signed a letter, “on behalf of the Congressional Fire Services Caucus,” asking for an exclusion on smoke alarms. North Carolina Senator Thom Tillis sought one for Honda’s lawn mower flywheels. For Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, it was BedJet’s “ultra-thin adjustable bed ‘device.’” For Congressman Doug Collins, Home Depot’s light fixtures. For Sen. Patty Murray, empty coffee K-cup pods. Some of these exclusions were granted, and many weren’t. It’s difficult to know if lobbying by Congress made a difference… One substantial downside is more political interference in the economy. Pretty swampy.

We saw something very similar when President Obama was granting waivers for Obamacare. That was just one of the ways insiders got rich lobbying politicians for special treatment under government-run healthcare.

Let’s wrap this up.

Writing for the Wall Street Journal in March, Senator Pat Toomey and former Senator Phil Gramm conclude Trump’s protectionism was a failure.

In his first two years as president, Mr. Trump lifted regulatory burdens and pushed through a major tax cut, which triggered a broad-based rise in income and employment. He then turned to his protectionist agenda, which reduced economic growth and failed to deliver Michigan, Pennsylvania or Wisconsin in the 2020 election. Protectionism failed both as economic policy and political strategy. …As Mr. Trump found when he imposed tariffs on steel and aluminum, the resulting increase in jobs in those industries was small. …Jobs gained in the steel and aluminum industries after the tariffs were dwarfed by jobs lost in industries that use steel and aluminum in their manufacturing process, not to mention the jobs lost due to foreign trade retaliation. …Innovation, technological development and the capacity of a market economy to adapt to change provide our only sure path to job creation and prosperity. This is a lesson all politicians, but especially Republicans, need to learn from the economic and political failure of protectionism in the Trump era.

Amen.

Protectionism didn’t work. It didn’t create jobs, and it didn’t even buy votes.

Which is why I hope this meme is the lesson that people remember from the Trump years (also the message we should have learned from the Hoover years).

The bottom line is that “Tariff Man” hurt himself and hurt the economy.

P.S. Sadly, Biden has not reversed many of Trump’s protectionist policies. But that’s not a surprise given his support for statism.

P.P.S. Though I hold out some hope that Biden will utilize the World Trade Organization as a tool to expand trade, thus reversing one of Trump’s mistakes.

Big-Government Republicans Enable Big-Government Democrats

I get asked why I frequently criticize Republicans.

My response is easy. I care about results rather than rhetoric. And while GOP politicians often pay lip service to the principles of limited government,they usually increase spending even faster than Democrats.

Indeed, Republicans are even worse than Democrats when measuring the growth of domestic spending!

This is bad news because it means the burden of government expands when Republicans are in charge.

And, as Gary Abernathy points out in a column for the Washington Post, Republicans then don’t have the moral authority to complain when Democrats engage in spending binges.

President Biden is proposing another $3 trillion in spending… There are objections, but none that can be taken seriously. …Republicans had lost their standing as the party of fiscal responsibility when most of them succumbed to the political virus of covid fever and rubber-stamped around $4 trillion in “covid relief,”… With Trump out and Biden in, Republicans suddenly pretended that their 2020 spending spree happened in some alternate universe.But the GOP’s united opposition to Biden’s $1.9 trillion package won’t wash off the stench of the hypocrisy. …I noted a year ago that we had crossed the Rubicon, that our longtime flirtation with socialism had become a permanent relationship. Congratulations, Bernie Sanders. The GOP won’t become irrelevant because of its association with Trump, as some predict. It will diminish because it is bizarrely opposing now that which it helped make palatable just last year. Fiscal responsibility is dead, and Republicans helped bury it. Put the shovels away, there’s no digging it up now.

For what it’s worth, I hope genuine fiscal responsibility isn’t dead.

Maybe it’s been hibernating ever since Reagan left office (like Pepperidge Farm, I’m old enough to remember those wonderful years).

Subsequent Republican presidents liked to copy Reagan’s rhetoric, but they definitely didn’t copy his policies.

  • Spending restraint was hibernating during the presidency of George H.W. Bush.
  • Spending restraint also was hibernating during the presidency of George W. Bush.
  • And spending restraint was hibernating during the presidency of Donald Trump.

I’m not the only one to notice GOP hypocrisy.

Here are some excerpts from a 2019 column in the Washington Post by Fareed Zakaria.

In what Republicans used to call the core of their agenda — limited government — Trump has been profoundly unconservative. …Trump has now added more than $88 billion in taxes in the form of tariffs, according to the right-leaning Tax Foundation. (Despite what the president says, tariffs are taxes on foreign goods paid by U.S. consumers.) This has had the effect of reducing gross domestic product and denting the wages of Americans.…For decades, conservatives including Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan preached to the world the virtues of free trade. But perhaps even more, they believed in the idea that governments should not pick winners and losers in the economy… Yet the Trump administration…behaved like a Central Planning Agency, granting exemptions on tariffs to favored companies and industries, while refusing them to others. …In true Soviet style, lobbyists, lawyers and corporate executives now line up to petition government officials for these treasured waivers, which are granted in an opaque process… On the core issue that used to define the GOP — economics — the party’s agenda today is state planning and crony capitalism.

Zakaria is right about Republicans going along with most of Trump’s bad policies (as illustrated by this cartoon strip).*

The bottom line is that Republicans would be much more effective arguing against Biden’s spending orgy had they also argued for spending restraint when Trump was in the White House.

P.S. It will be interesting to see what happens in the near future. Will the GOP be a small-government Reagan party or a big-government Trump party?

Or maybe it will go back to being a Nixon-type party, which would mean bigger government but without mean tweets. And there are plenty of options.

If they make the wrong choice (anything other than Reaganism), Margaret Thatcher has already warned us about the consequences.

*To be fair, Republicans also went along with Trump’s good policies. It’s just unfortunate that spending restraint wasn’t one of them.

—-

March 31, 2021

President Biden  c/o The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500

Dear Mr. President,

Please explain to me if you ever do plan to balance the budget while you are President? I have written these things below about you and I really do think that you don’t want to cut spending in order to balance the budget. It seems you ever are daring the Congress to stop you from spending more.

President Barack Obama speaks about the debt limit in the East Room of the White House in Washington. | AP Photo

“The credit of the United States ‘is not a bargaining chip,’ Obama said on 1-14-13. However, President Obama keeps getting our country’s credit rating downgraded as he raises the debt ceiling higher and higher!!!!

Washington Could Learn a Lot from a Drug Addict

Just spend more, don’t know how to cut!!! Really!!! That is not living in the real world is it?

Making more dependent on government is not the way to go!!

Why is our government in over 16 trillion dollars in debt? There are many reasons for this but the biggest reason is people say “Let’s spend someone else’s money to solve our problems.” Liberals like Max Brantley have talked this way for years. Brantley will say that conservatives are being harsh when they don’t want the government out encouraging people to be dependent on the government. The Obama adminstration has even promoted a plan for young people to follow like Julia the Moocher.  

David Ramsey demonstrates in his Arkansas Times Blog post of 1-14-13 that very point:

Arkansas Politics / Health Care Arkansas’s share of Medicaid expansion and the national debt

Posted by on Mon, Jan 14, 2013 at 1:02 PM

Baby carrot Arkansas Medicaid expansion image

Imagine standing a baby carrot up next to the 25-story Stephens building in Little Rock. That gives you a picture of the impact on the national debt that federal spending in Arkansas on Medicaid expansion would have, while here at home expansion would give coverage to more than 200,000 of our neediest citizens, create jobs, and save money for the state.

Here’s the thing: while more than a billion dollars a year in federal spending would represent a big-time stimulus for Arkansas, it’s not even a drop in the bucket when it comes to the national debt.

Currently, the national debt is around $16.4 trillion. In fiscal year 2015, the federal government would spend somewhere in the neighborhood of $1.2 billion to fund Medicaid expansion in Arkansas if we say yes. That’s about 1/13,700th of the debt.

It’s hard to get a handle on numbers that big, so to put that in perspective, let’s get back to the baby carrot. Imagine that the height of the Stephens building (365 feet) is the $16 trillion national debt. That $1.2 billion would be the length of a ladybug. Of course, we’re not just talking about one year if we expand. Between now and 2021, the federal government projects to contribute around $10 billion. The federal debt is projected to be around $25 trillion by then, so we’re talking about 1/2,500th of the debt. Compared to the Stephens building? That’s a baby carrot.

______________

Here is how it will all end if everyone feels they should be allowed to have their “baby carrot.”

How sad it is that liberals just don’t get this reality.

Here is what the Founding Fathers had to say about welfare. David Weinberger noted:

While living in Europe in the 1760s, Franklin observed: “in different countries … the more public provisions were made for the poor, the less they provided for themselves, and of course became poorer. And, on the contrary, the less was done for them, the more they did for themselves, and became richer.”

Alexander Fraser Tytler, Lord Woodhouselee (15 October 1747 – 5 January 1813) was a Scottish lawyer, writer, and professor. Tytler was also a historian, and he noted, “A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the majority discovers it can vote itself largess out of the public treasury. After that, the majority always votes for the candidate promising the most benefits with the result the democracy collapses because of the loose fiscal policy ensuing, always to be followed by a dictatorship, then a monarchy.”

Thomas Jefferson to Joseph Milligan

April 6, 1816

[Jefferson affirms that the main purpose of society is to enable human beings to keep the fruits of their labor. — TGW]

To take from one, because it is thought that his own industry and that of his fathers has acquired too much, in order to spare to others, who, or whose fathers have not exercised equal industry and skill, is to violate arbitrarily the first principle of association, “the guarantee to every one of a free exercise of his industry, and the fruits acquired by it.” If the overgrown wealth of an individual be deemed dangerous to the State, the best corrective is the law of equal inheritance to all in equal degree; and the better, as this enforces a law of nature, while extra taxation violates it.

[From Writings of Thomas Jefferson, ed. Albert E. Bergh (Washington: Thomas Jefferson Memorial Association, 1904), 14:466.]

_______

Jefferson pointed out that to take from the rich and give to the poor through government is just wrong. Franklin knew the poor would have a better path upward without government welfare coming their way. Milton Friedman’s negative income tax is the best method for doing that and by taking away all welfare programs and letting them go to the churches for charity.

_____________

_________

Thank you so much for your time. I know how valuable it is. I also appreciate the fine family that you have and your commitment as a father and a husband.

Sincerely,

Everette Hatcher III, 13900 Cottontail Lane, Alexander, AR 72002, ph 501-920-5733

Williams with Sowell – Minimum Wage

Thomas Sowell

Thomas Sowell – Reducing Black Unemployment

By WALTER WILLIAMS

—-

Ronald Reagan with Milton Friedman
Milton Friedman The Power of the Market 2-5

Related posts:

Welfare Spending Shattering All-Time Highs

  We got to act fast and get off this path of socialism. Morning Bell: Welfare Spending Shattering All-Time Highs Robert Rector and Amy Payne October 18, 2012 at 9:03 am It’s been a pretty big year for welfare—and a new report shows welfare is bigger than ever. The Obama Administration turned a giant spotlight […]

We need more brave souls that will vote against Washington welfare programs

We need to cut Food Stamp program and not extend it. However, it seems that people tell the taxpayers back home they are going to Washington and cut government spending but once they get up there they just fall in line with  everyone else that keeps spending our money. I am glad that at least […]

Welfare programs are not the answer for the poor

Government Must Cut Spending Uploaded by HeritageFoundation on Dec 2, 2010 The government can cut roughly $343 billion from the federal budget and they can do so immediately. __________ Liberals argue that the poor need more welfare programs, but I have always argued that these programs enslave the poor to the government. Food Stamps Growth […]

Private charities are best solution and not government welfare

Milton Friedman – The Negative Income Tax Published on May 11, 2012 by LibertyPen In this 1968 interview, Milton Friedman explained the negative income tax, a proposal that at minimum would save taxpayers the 72 percent of our current welfare budget spent on administration. http://www.LibertyPen.com Source: Firing Line with William F Buckley Jr. ________________ Milton […]

The book “After the Welfare State”

Dan Mitchell Commenting on Obama’s Failure to Propose a Fiscal Plan Published on Aug 16, 2012 by danmitchellcato No description available. ___________ After the Welfare State Posted by David Boaz Cato senior fellow Tom G. Palmer, who is lecturing about freedom in Slovenia and Tbilisi this week, asked me to post this announcement of his […]

President Obama responds to Heritage Foundation critics on welfare reform waivers

Is President Obama gutting the welfare reform that Bill Clinton signed into law? Morning Bell: Obama Denies Gutting Welfare Reform Amy Payne August 8, 2012 at 9:15 am The Obama Administration came out swinging against its critics on welfare reform yesterday, with Press Secretary Jay Carney saying the charge that the Administration gutted the successful […]

Welfare reform part 3

Thomas Sowell – Welfare Welfare reform was working so good. Why did we have to abandon it? Look at this article from 2003. The Continuing Good News About Welfare Reform By Robert Rector and Patrick Fagan, Ph.D. February 6, 2003 Six years ago, President Bill Clinton signed legislation overhauling part of the nation’s welfare system. […]

Welfare reform part 2

Uploaded by ForaTv on May 29, 2009 Complete video at: http://fora.tv/2009/05/18/James_Bartholomew_The_Welfare_State_Were_In Author James Bartholomew argues that welfare benefits actually increase government handouts by ‘ruining’ ambition. He compares welfare to a humane mousetrap. —– Welfare reform was working so good. Why did we have to abandon it? Look at this article from 2003. In the controversial […]

Why did Obama stop the Welfare Reform that Clinton put in?

Thomas Sowell If the welfare reform law was successful then why change it? Wasn’t Bill Clinton the president that signed into law? Obama Guts Welfare Reform Robert Rector and Kiki Bradley July 12, 2012 at 4:10 pm Today, the Obama Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released an official policy directive rewriting the welfare […]

“Feedback Friday” Letter to White House generated form letter response July 10,2012 on welfare, etc (part 14)

I have been writing President Obama letters and have not received a personal response yet.  (He reads 10 letters a day personally and responds to each of them.) However, I did receive a form letter in the form of an email on July 10, 2012. I don’t know which letter of mine generated this response so I have […]

Quadruple the Cost, 11 Years Late

It appears that only a fraction of the spending proposed in a new $3 trillion to $4 trillion bill would go toward an already too-expansive definition of infrastructure. Pictured: Engineers discuss the progress of an infrastructure construction project. (Photo: Sornranison Prakittrakoon/ Moment/Getty Images)

The media were flooded Monday with news that the Biden administration is working on a colossal new $3 trillion to $4 trillion spending plan.

While full details are not available yet, the plan appears to be another left-wing grab bag of big-government proposals. Rather than stimulating the economy, it would stimulate bigger government while funneling unprecedented amounts of power and money through the hands of politicians in Washington.

All this comes on the heels of President Joe Biden signing into law on March 11 a badly flawed $1.9 trillion legislative package that was originally marketed as a COVID-19 response, but which was more focused on left-wing pet causes, such as bailouts for union pension plans and unnecessary handouts for state governments.

Just a day later, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., released a statement calling for bipartisan work on legislation that would focus on infrastructure. While there were good reasons to question how beneficial or “bipartisan” such legislation would be, there was at least a chance of finding some across-the-aisle support.

Want to keep up with the 24/7 news cycle? Want to know the most important stories of the day for conservatives? Need news you can trust? Subscribe to The Daily Signal’s email newsletter. Learn more >>

But the potential for bipartisanship was quickly scuttled by news of the latest multitrillion-dollar plan.

It would be bad enough if the latest plan was just a big-spending infrastructure package. However, it appears that only a fraction of the new spending would go toward an already too-expansive definition of infrastructure.

Instead, most of the new spending and tax subsidies would go toward expanding the welfare state, including “free” tuition for community colleges, “free” child care, and other handouts that lack right-of-center support.

This would likely be the largest expansion of the federal government since the “Great Society” of the 1960s, even eclipsing Obamacare in scope.

Reports indicate that Democrats might attempt to split the plan into two bills—one focused on social spending that passes narrowly along party lines, the other focused on actual infrastructure aimed at winning bipartisan support.

However, it’s clear that the $3 trillion-plus total price tag is already souring prospects for bipartisan infrastructure legislation.

House Republicans boycotted the annual Ways and Means Committee “Member’s Day” hearing on Tuesday in the wake of news reports on the plan, since they indicated that Democrats have already made up their minds to pursue as much spending as possible through the legislative procedure known as reconciliation.

Coincidentally, two respected nonpartisan groups released reports this week that show why Biden and Pelosi should pause their aggressive agenda.

First, the Congressional Budget Office published a paper demonstrating what would happen if a sustained increase in federal spending were coupled with big tax increases to pay for the spending.

While the analysis points to different long-term effects from different types of taxes, any tax-and-spend approach would lead to reductions in economic growth and personal income that are larger than the size of the tax hikes.

For example, the analysis found that having 10% more federal government would mean a 12% to 19% reduction in personal consumption.

And that’s a conservative estimate. Most estimates show tax hikes shrink the economy by two to three times more than the revenues they raise.

That doesn’t mean Congress could escape the consequences of a continued spending spree by simply adding to the national debt. The CBO paper cautions that that would not only impose significant costs and divert resources away from the private sector, but it also would be unsustainable and increase the risk of a devastating financial crisis.

Along the same lines, the Government Accountability Office released a sobering reporton the nation’s poor financial health.

Now that Congress has passed a combined total of $6 trillion in legislation in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic (more than $48,000 per household), it must quickly address the unsustainable growth of major benefit programs, such as Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.

Even before the pandemic struck, these programs were on a path to bankruptcy. Addressing these shortfalls in a way that is fair to both current retirees and future generations who will have to foot the bill is one of the greatest policy challenges facing the nation.

Unfortunately, Washington is exacerbating the problem by adding excessively to the national debt and potentially stunting economic growth with higher taxes.

While the Biden administration has repeatedly claimed that it will only seek to raise taxes on the wealthy, a government of the size that it’s seeking would require amounts of money that can only be generated through steep across-the-board tax increases on middle-class Americans.

Regardless of whether those taxes are levied tomorrow or in a few years, they would be an inevitable part of expanding the size and scope of the federal government.

Rather than continuing down the path of centralized power and socialism, lawmakers should recognize the costs associated with endless federal spending and chart a course toward financial responsibility and prosperity.

If they don’t, it will be the public’s duty to hold them accountable.

Have an opinion about this article? To sound off, please email letters@DailySignal.com and we will consider publishing your remarks in our regular “We Hear You” feature.

March 31, 2021

President Biden  c/o The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500

Dear Mr. President,

Please explain to me if you ever do plan to balance the budget while you are President? I have written these things below about you and I really do think that you don’t want to cut spending in order to balance the budget. It seems you ever are daring the Congress to stop you from spending more.

President Barack Obama speaks about the debt limit in the East Room of the White House in Washington. | AP Photo

“The credit of the United States ‘is not a bargaining chip,’ Obama said on 1-14-13. However, President Obama keeps getting our country’s credit rating downgraded as he raises the debt ceiling higher and higher!!!!

Washington Could Learn a Lot from a Drug Addict

Just spend more, don’t know how to cut!!! Really!!! That is not living in the real world is it?

Making more dependent on government is not the way to go!!

Why is our government in over 16 trillion dollars in debt? There are many reasons for this but the biggest reason is people say “Let’s spend someone else’s money to solve our problems.” Liberals like Max Brantley have talked this way for years. Brantley will say that conservatives are being harsh when they don’t want the government out encouraging people to be dependent on the government. The Obama adminstration has even promoted a plan for young people to follow like Julia the Moocher.  

David Ramsey demonstrates in his Arkansas Times Blog post of 1-14-13 that very point:

Arkansas Politics / Health Care Arkansas’s share of Medicaid expansion and the national debt

Posted by on Mon, Jan 14, 2013 at 1:02 PM

Baby carrot Arkansas Medicaid expansion image

Imagine standing a baby carrot up next to the 25-story Stephens building in Little Rock. That gives you a picture of the impact on the national debt that federal spending in Arkansas on Medicaid expansion would have, while here at home expansion would give coverage to more than 200,000 of our neediest citizens, create jobs, and save money for the state.

Here’s the thing: while more than a billion dollars a year in federal spending would represent a big-time stimulus for Arkansas, it’s not even a drop in the bucket when it comes to the national debt.

Currently, the national debt is around $16.4 trillion. In fiscal year 2015, the federal government would spend somewhere in the neighborhood of $1.2 billion to fund Medicaid expansion in Arkansas if we say yes. That’s about 1/13,700th of the debt.

It’s hard to get a handle on numbers that big, so to put that in perspective, let’s get back to the baby carrot. Imagine that the height of the Stephens building (365 feet) is the $16 trillion national debt. That $1.2 billion would be the length of a ladybug. Of course, we’re not just talking about one year if we expand. Between now and 2021, the federal government projects to contribute around $10 billion. The federal debt is projected to be around $25 trillion by then, so we’re talking about 1/2,500th of the debt. Compared to the Stephens building? That’s a baby carrot.

______________

Here is how it will all end if everyone feels they should be allowed to have their “baby carrot.”

How sad it is that liberals just don’t get this reality.

Here is what the Founding Fathers had to say about welfare. David Weinberger noted:

While living in Europe in the 1760s, Franklin observed: “in different countries … the more public provisions were made for the poor, the less they provided for themselves, and of course became poorer. And, on the contrary, the less was done for them, the more they did for themselves, and became richer.”

Alexander Fraser Tytler, Lord Woodhouselee (15 October 1747 – 5 January 1813) was a Scottish lawyer, writer, and professor. Tytler was also a historian, and he noted, “A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the majority discovers it can vote itself largess out of the public treasury. After that, the majority always votes for the candidate promising the most benefits with the result the democracy collapses because of the loose fiscal policy ensuing, always to be followed by a dictatorship, then a monarchy.”

Thomas Jefferson to Joseph Milligan

April 6, 1816

[Jefferson affirms that the main purpose of society is to enable human beings to keep the fruits of their labor. — TGW]

To take from one, because it is thought that his own industry and that of his fathers has acquired too much, in order to spare to others, who, or whose fathers have not exercised equal industry and skill, is to violate arbitrarily the first principle of association, “the guarantee to every one of a free exercise of his industry, and the fruits acquired by it.” If the overgrown wealth of an individual be deemed dangerous to the State, the best corrective is the law of equal inheritance to all in equal degree; and the better, as this enforces a law of nature, while extra taxation violates it.

[From Writings of Thomas Jefferson, ed. Albert E. Bergh (Washington: Thomas Jefferson Memorial Association, 1904), 14:466.]

_______

Jefferson pointed out that to take from the rich and give to the poor through government is just wrong. Franklin knew the poor would have a better path upward without government welfare coming their way. Milton Friedman’s negative income tax is the best method for doing that and by taking away all welfare programs and letting them go to the churches for charity.

_____________

_________

Thank you so much for your time. I know how valuable it is. I also appreciate the fine family that you have and your commitment as a father and a husband.

Sincerely,

Everette Hatcher III, 13900 Cottontail Lane, Alexander, AR 72002, ph 501-920-5733

Williams with Sowell – Minimum Wage

Thomas Sowell

Thomas Sowell – Reducing Black Unemployment

By WALTER WILLIAMS

—-

Ronald Reagan with Milton Friedman
Milton Friedman The Power of the Market 2-5

Related posts:

Welfare Spending Shattering All-Time Highs

  We got to act fast and get off this path of socialism. Morning Bell: Welfare Spending Shattering All-Time Highs Robert Rector and Amy Payne October 18, 2012 at 9:03 am It’s been a pretty big year for welfare—and a new report shows welfare is bigger than ever. The Obama Administration turned a giant spotlight […]

We need more brave souls that will vote against Washington welfare programs

We need to cut Food Stamp program and not extend it. However, it seems that people tell the taxpayers back home they are going to Washington and cut government spending but once they get up there they just fall in line with  everyone else that keeps spending our money. I am glad that at least […]

Welfare programs are not the answer for the poor

Government Must Cut Spending Uploaded by HeritageFoundation on Dec 2, 2010 The government can cut roughly $343 billion from the federal budget and they can do so immediately. __________ Liberals argue that the poor need more welfare programs, but I have always argued that these programs enslave the poor to the government. Food Stamps Growth […]

Private charities are best solution and not government welfare

Milton Friedman – The Negative Income Tax Published on May 11, 2012 by LibertyPen In this 1968 interview, Milton Friedman explained the negative income tax, a proposal that at minimum would save taxpayers the 72 percent of our current welfare budget spent on administration. http://www.LibertyPen.com Source: Firing Line with William F Buckley Jr. ________________ Milton […]

The book “After the Welfare State”

Dan Mitchell Commenting on Obama’s Failure to Propose a Fiscal Plan Published on Aug 16, 2012 by danmitchellcato No description available. ___________ After the Welfare State Posted by David Boaz Cato senior fellow Tom G. Palmer, who is lecturing about freedom in Slovenia and Tbilisi this week, asked me to post this announcement of his […]

President Obama responds to Heritage Foundation critics on welfare reform waivers

Is President Obama gutting the welfare reform that Bill Clinton signed into law? Morning Bell: Obama Denies Gutting Welfare Reform Amy Payne August 8, 2012 at 9:15 am The Obama Administration came out swinging against its critics on welfare reform yesterday, with Press Secretary Jay Carney saying the charge that the Administration gutted the successful […]

Welfare reform part 3

Thomas Sowell – Welfare Welfare reform was working so good. Why did we have to abandon it? Look at this article from 2003. The Continuing Good News About Welfare Reform By Robert Rector and Patrick Fagan, Ph.D. February 6, 2003 Six years ago, President Bill Clinton signed legislation overhauling part of the nation’s welfare system. […]

Welfare reform part 2

Uploaded by ForaTv on May 29, 2009 Complete video at: http://fora.tv/2009/05/18/James_Bartholomew_The_Welfare_State_Were_In Author James Bartholomew argues that welfare benefits actually increase government handouts by ‘ruining’ ambition. He compares welfare to a humane mousetrap. —– Welfare reform was working so good. Why did we have to abandon it? Look at this article from 2003. In the controversial […]

Why did Obama stop the Welfare Reform that Clinton put in?

Thomas Sowell If the welfare reform law was successful then why change it? Wasn’t Bill Clinton the president that signed into law? Obama Guts Welfare Reform Robert Rector and Kiki Bradley July 12, 2012 at 4:10 pm Today, the Obama Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released an official policy directive rewriting the welfare […]

“Feedback Friday” Letter to White House generated form letter response July 10,2012 on welfare, etc (part 14)

I have been writing President Obama letters and have not received a personal response yet.  (He reads 10 letters a day personally and responds to each of them.) However, I did receive a form letter in the form of an email on July 10, 2012. I don’t know which letter of mine generated this response so I have […]



APRIL 20, 2021 1:47PM

Quadruple the Cost, 11 Years Late

By Randal O’Toole


SHARE

The California high‐​speed rail project was originally projected to cost $25 billion and is now projected to cost $100 billion. It was originally expected to be complete by 2020; now they are saying some time in the 2030s. Since they don’t have the money to complete it, it may never get done, and the part that will be finished serves the least‐​populated part of the route.

Hawaii has its own rail debacle that sounds like California’s system on a smaller scale. Honolulu decided to build a rail transit line that was originally projected to cost less than $3 billion. The latest estimates are that it will cost $12 billion including finance charges. The line was supposed to open in 2020; now they are saying 2031. But that date may be irrelevant because the transit agency building the project is $3 billion short of what is needed to finish it, and the part that will be finished serves the least‐​populated part of the route.

These two examples are a little extreme, but rail transit projects on average cost about 50 percent more than their original projections and very few end up costing less than 20 percent more than projected. While it is too soon to tell for California or Honolulu rail, ridership projections also average 70 percent more than actual ridership. A planning process that systematically overestimates benefits and underestimates costs is effectively biased towards capital intensive, high‐​cost projects.

This makes it particularly frightening that the Biden infrastructure plan calls for spending $85 billion more on transit. Transit carries only 1 percent of passenger travel in the United States and zero percent of freight, yet under Biden’s plan it would get nearly as much money as highways, which carry more than 85 percent of passenger travel and nearly 40 percent of the nation’s freight.

Biden’s proposal specifically calls for bringing “rail service to communities and neighborhoods across the country.” But rail transit was rendered obsolete by buses nearly a century ago, which is why between 1920 and 1975 around a thousand cities replaced rail lines with buses. Only when the federal government agreed to pay part of the cost of building new rail lines did many transit agencies get interested in new rail transit construction. Since then, the number of cities with rail transit has quintupled.

This is just one way in which the Biden infrastructure plan will waste money. Another is a “fix‐​it first” provision associated with Biden’s proposed highway spending. Although highways nominally get a little more money than transit ($115 billion vs. $85 billion), the “fix it first” rule means that states will not be able to build new roads until all existing roads are considered to be in good condition. No such rule will be applied to transit.

In fact, America’s state highways and bridges are already in pretty good condition. The number of bridges rated to be in “poor” condition has declined from 124,000 in 1992to 45,000 in 2020. The average roughness of pavement has also declined, meaning fewer potholes. These improvements were made without a giant infrastructure bill.

Transit infrastructure, meanwhile, is in terrible shape and deteriorating faster than agencies are maintaining it. The latest estimate is that transit needs $174 billion to get into a state of good repair. (It would cost a lot less to convert most rail transit to buses, which could be done in most cities whose initials are not NYC without harming transit systems.) If a fix‐​it first rule should be applied to anything, it would be transit.

An even more fundamental flaw with the Biden plan is that it completely ignores recent events, namely the pandemic. Even after everyone is vaccinated, it is expected that more people will work at home, fewer jobs will be located in downtowns, and more households will move to lower density areas. All of these changes hurt transit ridership, which is not likely to recover to more than about 75 percent of its pre‐​pandemic levels. This is a bad time to increasing spending on transit infrastructure.

The federal government should stop giving cities incentives to build expensive rail transit lines they don’t need. If Congress really wants to help infrastructure, it should just give money to the states based on a formula that takes population, land area, and miles of passenger travel and freight shipping (or user fees) into account and let the states decide how to spend the money.

MUSIC MONDAY Chris Martin wrote “But didn’t we have fun? Don’t say it was all a waste”

COLDPLAY Fun feat. Tove Lo

“Fun”
(feat. Tove Lo)

[Coldplay:]
I know it’s over before she says
I know it falls at the water face
I know it’s over, an ocean awaits
For a storm
The sun and snow
Rivers and rain
Crystal ball could foresee a change
And I know it’s over, parting our ways
And it’s done

[Coldplay:]
But didn’t we have fun?
Don’t say it was all a waste
Didn’t we have fun?
From the top of the world
Top of the waves
You said forever, forever always
We could have been lost
We would have been saved
Now we’re stopping the world, stopping it’s spin
Oh come on don’t give up
You see me give in
Don’t say it’s over
Don’t say we’re done
Oh, didn’t we have fun?
Oh, didn’t we have fun?

[Coldplay & Tove Lo:]
I know it’s over before she says
Now someone else has taken your place
I know it’s over Icarus says to the sun
And so it sinks in, lightning strikes
You’re too forced to force his glide
The fact that it’s over, the fact that it’s done

[Coldplay & Tove Lo:]
Didn’t we have fun?
Don’t say it was all a waste
Didn’t we have fun?
From the top of the world
Top of the waves
You said forever, forever always
We could have been lost
We would have been saved
Now we’re stopping the world, stopped it in its tracks
Nothing’s too broken to find our way back
So before it’s over, before you run
Ah, didn’t we have fun?

[Coldplay & Tove Lo:]
Just you and me, you and me
We were always meant to, always meant to
You and me, you and me
We were always meant to, always meant to
You and me, you and me
We were always meant to, always meant to
Hey-ey-ey-ey

Oh, didn’t we have fun?

Oh, didn’t we have fun?

[Coldplay:]
But didn’t?
Maybe we could again

Coldplay – Amazing Day (new song) (lyric) testo + traduzione (lyrics)

Related posts:

The Spiritual Implication of Coldplay songs

_________ Coldplay – Midnight At the bottom of this post are links to other articles about the spiritual implications of some Coldplay songs. Midnight (Coldplay song) From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia “Midnight” Song by Coldplay Recorded 2013 at The Bakery and The Beehive (London, England) Genre Ambient, experimental rock,electronic[1] Label Parlophone, Atlantic Writer Guy Berryman, Jonny Buckland, Will Champion, Jon Hopkins, Chris Martin Producer […]

“Music Monday” The most popular posts in the last 30 days about the spiritual quest of Chris Martin of Coldplay that can be found on www.thedailyhatch.org

These are some of the most popular posts in the last 30 days about the spiritual quest of Chris Martin of Coldplay that can be found on http://www.thedailyhatch.org: Chris Martin of Coldplay unknowingly lives out his childhood Christian beliefs (Part 3 of notes from June 23, 2012 Dallas Coldplay Concert, Martin left Christianity because of […]

Steve Jobs, Death, Woody Allen, Ecclesiastes and the band Coldplay

_________________________ (If you want to check out other posts I have done about about Steve Jobs:Some say Steve Jobs was an atheist , Steve Jobs and Adoption , What is the eternal impact of Steve Jobs’ life? ,Steve Jobs versus President Obama: Who created more jobs? ,Steve Jobs’ view of death and what the Bible has to say about it ,8 things you might not know about […]

“Music Monday” Coldplay the documentary with pictures and videos (Part 7 )

Coldplay Live 2003 Backstage Chris Martin revealed in his interview with Howard Stern that he was rasied an evangelical Christian but he has left the church. I believe that many words that he puts in his songs today are generated from the deep seated Christian beliefs from his childhood that find their way out in […]

Are Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin looking for Spiritual Answers? (Coldplay’s spiritual search Part 4)jh62

  I wrote this article a couple of years ago. Are Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin looking for Spiritual Answers? Just like King Solomon’s predicament in the Book of Ecclesiastes, both of these individuals are very wealthy, famous, and successful, but they still are seeking satisfying answers to life’s greatest questions even though it seems […]

Insight into what Coldplay meant by “St. Peter won’t call my name” (Series on Coldplay’s spiritual search, Part 3)jh61

Coldplay seeks to corner the market on earnest and expressive rock music that currently appeals to wide audiences Here is an article I wrote a couple of years ago about Chris Martin’s view of hell. He says he does not believe in it but for some reason he writes a song that teaches that it […]

Will Coldplay’s 2011 album continue on spiritual themes found in 2008 Viva La Vida? (Series on Coldplay’s spiritual search, Part 2)jh60

Views:2 By waymedia Coldplay Coldplay – Life In Technicolor ii Back in 2008 I wrote a paper on the spiritual themes of Coldplay’s album Viva La Vida and I predicted this spiritual search would continue in the future. Below is the second part of the paper, “Coldplay’s latest musical lyrics indicate a Spiritual Search for the […]

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE PART 368 My letter to Adam Levine who appears in the video “God’s Gonna Cut You Down” by Johnny Cash FEATURED ARTIST IS Damien Hirst

____

Johnny Cash – God’s Gonna Cut You Down

Johnny Cash’s version of the traditional God’s Gonna Cut You Down, from the album “American V: A Hundred Highways”, was released as a music video on November 9 2006, just over three years after Cash died. Producer Rick Rubin opens the music video, saying, “You know, Johnny always wore black. He wore black because he identified with the poor and the downtrodden…”. What follows is a collection of black and white clips of well known pop artists wearing black, each interacting with the song in their own way. Some use religious imagery. Howard sits in his limo reading from Ezekiel 34, a Biblical passage warning about impending judgment for false shepherd. Bono leaning on a graffiti-filled wall between angel’s wings and a halo, pointing to the words, “Sinners Make The Best Saints. J.C. R.I.P.” A number of artists wear or hold crosses.

Faces in Johnny Cash God's Gonna Cut You Down music video

Artists appear in this order: Rick Rubin, Iggy Pop, Kanye West, Chris Martin, Kris Kristofferson, Patti Smith, Terence Howard, Flea (Red Hot Chili Peppers), Q-Tip, Adam Levine (Maroon 5), Chris Rock, Justin Timberlake, Kate Moss, Sir Peter Blake (Sgt Peppers Artist), Sheryl Crow, Denis Hopper, Woody Harrelson, Amy Lee of Evanescence, Tommy Lee, Natalie Maines, Emily Robison, Martie Maguire (Dixie Chicks), Mick Jones, Sharon Stone, Bono, Shelby Lynne, Anthony Kiedis, Travis Barker, Lisa Marie Presley, Kid Rock, Jay Z, Keith Richards, Billy Gibbons, Corinne Bailey Rae, Johnny Depp, Graham Nash, Brian Wilson, Rick Rubin and Owen Wilson. The video finishes with Rick Rubin traveling to a seaside cliff with friend Owen Wilson to throw a bouquet of flowers up in the air.

March 16, 2019

Adam Levine

Beverly Hills, CA 90210-5213
USA

Dear Adam,

I understand that you are Jewish. If Johnny Cash was here today, I bet he would share something like this below from the scriptures. Johnny was a student of the whole Bible. He wrote the book THE MAN IN WHITE about the apostle Paul and it took him 10 years to write and in that book you can tell that he spent much time in research asking Jewish leaders what life was like for the Jews in the 1st century in Palestine while being occupied by the Romans.

I know that you will spending lots of time in the scriptures and I wanted to share with you some key scriptures that talk about the Messiah.

Uniqueness of Jesus

Who Is Jesus Christ?

By Bill Bright

What if you could predict that a major world event would take place five minutes from now? What if you could accurately describe what would happen? Would knowing the future give you unusual power? Would anyone believe you? Possibly some would, but how many would not?

Many people do not believe the Bible, yet it miraculously foretells hundreds of events, sometimes in minute detail, and usually hundreds – sometimes thousands – of years ahead. Some prophecies concern cities and countries, such as Tyre, Jericho, Samaria, Jerusalem, Palestine, Moab, and Babylon. Others relate to specific individuals. Many have already been fulfilled, but some are still in the future.

Jesus Christ is the subject of more than 300 Old Testament prophecies. His birth nearly 2,000 years ago, and events of His life had been foretold by many prophets during a period of 1,500 years. History confirms that even the smallest detail happened just as predicted. It confirms beyond a doubt that Jesus is the true Messiah, the Son of God and Savior of the world.

The following chart lists some of the amazing predictions concerning Jesus Christ, together with the record of their fulfillment:


His Birth
Old Testament Prophecy: Isaiah 7:14
Fullfillment in Jesus: Matthew 1:18,22,23

His Birthplace
Old Testament Prophecy: Micah 5:2
Fullfillment in Jesus: Luke 2:4,6,7

His Childhood in Egypt
Old Testament Prophecy: Hosea 11:1
Fullfillment in Jesus: Matthew 2:14-15

The Purpose for His Death
Old Testament Prophecy: Isaiah 53:4-6
Fullfillment in Jesus: 1 Corinthians 15:21; 1 Peter 2:24

His Betrayal
Old Testament Prophecy: Zechariah 11:12-13; 13:6
Fullfillment in Jesus: Matthew 26:14-16; 27:3-10

His Crucifixion
Old Testament Prophecy: Psalm 22
Fullfillment in Jesus: Matthew 27

His Resurrection
Old Testament Prophecy: Psalm 16:9-10
Fullfillment in Jesus: Acts 2:31


The printed version of this study contains 29 pages of preparatory notes not included in the online version of this study. Click here to order the printed study guide, The Uniqueness of Jesus.

Isaiah 53-54

English Standard Version (ESV)

53 (A)Who has believed what he has heard from us?[a]
And to whom has (B)the arm of the Lord been revealed?
For he grew up before him like a young plant,
(C)and like a root out of dry ground;
(D)he had no form or majesty that we should look at him,
and no beauty that we should desire him.
(E)He was despised and rejected[b] by men;
a man of sorrows,[c] and acquainted with[d] grief;[e]
and as one from whom men hide their faces[f]
he was despised, and (F)we esteemed him not.

(G)Surely he has borne our griefs
and carried our sorrows;
yet we esteemed him stricken,
(H)smitten by God, and afflicted.
(I)But he was pierced for our transgressions;
he was crushed for our iniquities;
upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace,
(J)and with his wounds we are healed.
(K)All we like sheep have gone astray;
we have turned—every one—to his own way;
(L)and the Lord has laid on him
the iniquity of us all.

He was oppressed, and he was afflicted,
(M)yet he opened not his mouth;
(N)like a (O)lamb that is led to the slaughter,
and like a sheep that before its shearers is silent,
so he opened not his mouth.
By oppression and judgment he was taken away;
and as for his generation, (P)who considered
that he was cut off out of the land of the living,
stricken for the transgression of my people?
And they made his grave with the wicked
(Q)and with a rich man in his death,
although (R)he had done no violence,
and there was no deceit in his mouth.

10 Yet (S)it was the will of the Lord to crush him;
he has put him to grief;[g]
(T)when his soul makes[h] an offering for guilt,
he shall see his offspring; he shall prolong his days;
(U)the will of the Lord shall prosper in his hand.
11 Out of the anguish of his soul he shall see[i] and be satisfied;
by his knowledge shall (V)the righteous one, my servant,
(W)make many to be accounted righteous,
(X)and he shall bear their iniquities.
12 (Y)Therefore I will divide him a portion with the many,[j]
(Z)and he shall divide the spoil with the strong,[k]
because he poured out his soul to death
and was numbered with the transgressors;
(AA)yet he bore the sin of many,
and makes intercession for the transgressors.

The Eternal Covenant of Peace

54 (AB)“Sing, O barren one, who did not bear;
break forth into singing and cry aloud,
you who have not been in labor!
For the children of (AC)the desolate one (AD)will be more
than the children of her who is married,” says the Lord.
(AE)“Enlarge the place of your tent,
and let the curtains of your habitations be stretched out;
do not hold back; lengthen your cords
and strengthen your stakes.
(AF)For you will spread abroad to the right and to the left,
and your offspring will possess the nations
and will people the desolate cities.

“Fear not, (AG)for you will not be ashamed;
be not confounded, for you will not be disgraced;
for you will forget the shame of your youth,
and the reproach of your widowhood you will remember no more.
(AH)For your Maker is your husband,
the Lord of hosts is his name;
(AI)and the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer,
(AJ)the God of the whole earth he is called.
(AK)For the Lord has called you
like a wife deserted and grieved in spirit,
like a wife of youth when she is cast off,
says your God.
(AL)For a brief moment I deserted you,
but with great compassion I will gather you.
(AM)In overflowing anger for a moment
I hid my face from you,
(AN)but with everlasting love I will have compassion on you,”
says the Lord, your Redeemer.

“This is like (AO)the days of Noah[l] to me:
as I swore that the waters of Noah
should no more go over the earth,
so I have sworn that I will not be angry with you,
and will not rebuke you.
10 For the mountains may depart
and the hills be removed,
but my steadfast love shall not depart from you,
and (AP)my covenant of peace shall not be removed,”
says the Lord, who has compassion on you.

11 (AQ)“O afflicted one, storm-tossed and not comforted,
behold, (AR)I will set your stones in antimony,
(AS)and lay your foundations with sapphires.[m]
12 I will make your pinnacles of agate,[n]
your gates of carbuncles,[o]
and all your wall of precious stones

You and I have something in common and it is the song GOD’S GONNA CUT YOU DOWN. You were in the video and my post about that video entitled, People in the Johnny Cash video “God’s Gonna Cut You Down” is the most popular post I have done in recent years. It ranked #1 for all of 2015 and I have over 1,000,000 hits on my http://www.thedailyhatch.org blog site. The ironic thing is that I never knew what a big deal Johnny Cash was until he had died. I grew up in Memphis with his nephew Paul Garrett and we even went to the same school and church. Paul’s mother was Johnny Cash’s sister Margaret Louise Garrett.

Stu Carnall, an early tour manager for Johnny Cash, recalled, “Johnny’s an individualist, and he’s a loner….We’d be on the road for weeks at a time, staying at motels and hotels along the way. While the other members of the troupe would sleep in, Johnny would disappear for a few hours. When he returned, if anyone asked where he’d been, he’d answer straight faced, ‘to church.'”

There were two sides to Johnny Cash and he expressed that best when he said, “There is a spiritual side to me that goes real deep, but I confess right up front that I’m the biggest sinner of them all.”

Have you ever taken the time to read the words of the song?

You can run on for a long time
Run on for a long time
Run on for a long time
Sooner or later God’ll cut you down
Sooner or later God’ll cut you down
Go tell that long tongue liar
Go and tell that midnight rider
Tell the rambler,
The gambler,
The back biter
Tell ’em that God’s gonna cut ’em down
Tell ’em that God’s gonna cut ’em down
Well my goodness gracious let me tell you the news
My head’s been wet with the midnight dew
I’ve been down on bended knee talkin’ to the man from Galilee
He spoke to me in the voice so sweet
I thought I heard the shuffle of the angel’s feet
He called my name and my heart stood still
When he said, “John go do My will!”

 Well you may throw your rock and hide your hand

Workin’ in the dark against your fellow man
But as sure as God made black and white
What’s down in the dark will be brought to the light
You can run on for a long time
Run on for a long time
Sooner or later God’ll cut you down
___
Johnny Cash sang this song of Judgment because he knew the Bible says in  Romans 6:23, “For the wages of sin is death; but the GIFT OF GOD IS ETERNAL LIFE THROUGH JESUS CHRIST OUR LORD.” The first part of this verse is about the judgment sinners must face if not pardoned, but the second part is about Christ who paid our sin debt!!! Did you know that Romans 6:23 is part of what we call the Roman Road to Christ. Here is how it goes:
  • Because of our sin, we are separated from God.
    For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.  (Romans 3:23)
  • The Penalty for our sin is death.
    For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Jesus Christ our Lord. (Romans 6:23)
  • The penalty for our sin was paid by Jesus Christ!
    But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:8)
  • If we repent of our sin, then confess and trust Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, we will be saved from our sins!
    For whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.  (Romans 10:13)
    …if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. (Romans 10:9,10)

The answer to find meaning in life is found in putting your faith and trust in Jesus Christ. The Bible is true from cover to cover and can be trusted.

Thanks for your time.

Everette Hatcher, everettehatcher@gmail.com, http://www.thedailyhatch.org, cell ph 501-920-5733, Box 23416, LittleRock, AR 72221

PS: I have enclosed a booklet entitled THIS WAS YOUR LIFE! If one repents and puts trust in Christ alone for eternal life then he or she will be forgiven. Francis Schaeffer noted, “If Satan tempts you to worry over it, rebuff him by saying I AM FORGIVEN ON THE BASIS OF THE WORK OF CHRIST AS HE DIED ON THE CROSS!!!”

  • American singer and civil rights activist Odetta recorded a traditional version of the song. Musician Sean Michel covered the song during his audition on Season 6 of American Idol. Matchbox Twenty also used the song before playing “How Far We’ve Come” on their “Exile in America” tour.

  • The New Jersey rock band The Gaslight Anthem have also covered the song.[citation needed] Canadian rock band Three Days Grace has used the song in the opening of their live shows, as well as the rock band Staind . Bobbie Gentry recorded a version as “Sermon” on her album The Delta Sweete. Guitarist Bill Leverty recorded a version for his third solo project Deep South, a tribute album of traditional songs. Tom Jones recorded an up-tempo version which appears on his 2010 album Praise & BlamePow woW recorded a version with the Golden Gate Quartet for their 1992 album Regagner les Plaines and performed a live version with the quartet in 2008. A cover of the song by Blues Saraceno was used for the Season 8 trailer of the TV series DexterPedro Costarecorded a neo-blues version for the Discovery channel TV show Weed Country (2013). Virginia based folk rock band Carbon Leaf covered the song many times during their live shows.
  • Chart positions[edit]

    Moby version: “Run On”[edit]

    Chart (1999) Peak
    position
    UK Singles Chart 33

    Johnny Cash version[edit]

    Chart (2006) Peak
    position
    UK Singles Chart 77

  • American Idol contestant ministers in Chile

  • SANTIAGO, Chile (BP)–Sean Michel smiled through his distinctive, foot-long beard as he slid the guitar strap over his shoulder and greeted the crowd at El Huevo nightclub with what little Spanish he knows. The former American Idol contestant and his band then erupted into the sounds of Mississippi Delta blues-rock.But unlike other musicians who played that night, the Sean Michel band sang about every person’s need for God and the salvation that comes only through faith in Jesus Christ.”We came down [to Chile] to open doors that other ministries couldn’t,” said Jay Newman, Michel’s manager. “To get in places that only a rock band could — to create a vision for new church-planting movements among the underground, disenfranchised subcultures of Chile.”The Sean Michel band recently traveled through central Chile playing more than 15 shows in bars, churches, schools and parks. The group consists of Southern Baptists Sean Michel, lead singer; Alvin Rapien, lead guitarist; Seth Atchley, bass guitarist; and Tyler Groves, drummer.”Although we’re a blues rock ‘n’ roll band, we’re an extension of the church,” Michel said. “We’re kind of like ‘musicianaries,’ if you will.”MISSIONS-MINDED MUSICIANSThe band formed after Michel and Newman met as students at Ouachita Baptist University in Arkadelphia, Ark. While there, the two began recording and selling Michel’s music as a way to raise money for mission trips to Africa and Asia.”We were just trying to raise money for a mission trip, but we’d also seen God speaking to people through the music,” Michel said. “So we were like, ‘Well, maybe we need to do something with this,’ and we became a music ministry. But it’s always been rooted in missions and … in the Great Commission.”Michel graduated from Ouachita in 2001, Newman in 2004. In 2007, Newman talked Michel into auditioning for American Idol. The exposure Michel received through the television show gained a wider audience for their ministry.”The whole American Idol thing was so weird,” Michel said. “We just kind of went on a whim. But the Lord used it in a big way.”During his tryout, Michel belted out a soulful rendition of Johnny Cash’s “God’s Gonna Cut You Down.” The video of the audition went viral on the Internet.Soon he was doing radio interviews in which he identified himself as a Christian and directed listeners to the band’s Gospel-laden MySpace page. On their next mission trip to Asia, Michel and Newman found that being recognizable gave them access to venues they couldn’t have entered before.The band is now an official extension of First Southern Baptist Church of Bryant, Ark., where the musicians have long been active members serving in the music and youth ministries. Every mission trip they have taken has involved working with International Mission Board (IMB) missionaries.”We’re Southern Baptist,” Michel said. “That’s who we roll with.”

    TOUR DE FAITH

    “With short-term mission trips, you can plan, but you just got to be willing for your plans to change,” said Michel. When the band arrived in Chile, they were surprised to find that their schedule wasn’t nearly as full as expected. Almost no public venues had booked shows, and many rock-wary churches had declined to host the band.

    “The biggest barrier we had was the pastors,” said Cliff Case, an IMB missionary in Santiago, Chile, and a 1984 graduate of Ouachita Baptist. “The older pastors on two or three different occasions gave excuses for not doing it. It was a real frustration in that sense.”

    Disappointed by the lack of interest, the band prayed for God’s help. They met Jose Campos — or Pépe, as the band came to know him. Campos works with music and youth for the Ministry of the Down and Out, an independent Christian ministry that seeks to reach the often-overlooked demographics of Santiago.

    Campos was able to use his connections to book shows for the band in venues they wouldn’t have known about otherwise.

    “Had we met Pépe (Campos) two or three weeks before the group came, there’s no telling how many shows we might have done,” said Case, who met Newman at Ouachita when Case and his wife, Cinthy, were missionaries-in-residence there.

    Campos booked the show at El Huevo, possibly Chile’s most popular club. Playing there has given the band musical credibility among Chilean rockers. And, one Chilean church reported that a youth accepted Christ after hearing Newman talk before a show. The band already is contemplating a return tour next year.

    OPENING NEW DOORS

    Sharing the Gospel through their songs is only the beginning for the Sean Michel band. Their vision is to be a catalyst to help churches — and missionaries — connect with the lost people of their communities.

    “God is not saving the world through rock bands,” Michel said. “He’s saving the world through the church. And it will always be through the local body.”

    The band wants to see churches take ministry beyond the church doors.

    “If you’re going to want to legitimately reach lost people, you’re going to have to get out,” Michel said. “Go out into the dark places. Those are the places we need to be to reach out.”

    The band’s ministry in Chile opened new doors for IMB missionaries to reach the young, musical subculture of Chilean society.

    “They laid the groundwork for more opportunities,” Case said. “Now we have a network of who to talk to and how to get organized. We can focus on how to use the work they’re doing so we can win people to the Lord and plant some churches.”


    Tristan Taylor is an International Mission Board writer living in the Americas.

  • Damien Hirst – The First Look presented by Channel 4

    Published on Apr 3, 2012

    Featuring Noel Fielding

    _______________
    At the 5:00 point in the video above the 1991 artwork “THE PHYSICAL IMPOSSIBILITY OF DEATH IN THE MIND OF SOMEONE LIVING” is featured.

    The Scream, a Stuffed Shark, and the Insecurity of Culture

    Last week I took the opportunity of the record sale at auction of Edvard Munch’s masterpiece, The Scream (1895) to reflect on Munch and his work from a theological perspective. But the auctions themselves, which achieved record prices for several artists, raise their own set of theological questions that are more productive and interesting than most media commentary, which cites the disconnect between the art world and the so-called real world, or questions whether a work of art is worth $120 million.  Given the attention that the auctions have received the last few weeks inThe New York Times and the fact that British artist Damien Hirst’s retrospective at the Tate Gallery in London opened last month, I thought it worthwhile to republish a slightly edited version of a blog post entitled, “The Stuffed Shark and the Insecurity of Culture,” originally published at Comment: Public Theology for the Common Good on February 15, 2012.


    Damien Hirst, The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living, 1991

     

    The Art Market

    The media coverage surrounding British artist Damien Hirst’s presentation of over three hundred “dot” paintings at Larry Gagosian’s eleven galleries around the world (most of them painted by his assistants), reminded me of my defense of his most infamous work, The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living (1991) in the Summer 2010 issue of Comment. Commissioned by the British advertising executive and art collector Charles Saatchi, the fourteen-foot stuffed tiger shark suspended in a tank filled with formaldehyde was sold in 2005 to the American hedge fund executive Stephen Cohen for $12 million and recently donated to the Metropolitan Museum of Art. This work embodies the mysterious opacity of the contemporary art world, which frustrates even the most culturally engaged Christians.

    I wrote that Christians need a more robust understanding of the rich and complex habitus of the contemporary art world, consisting of the labyrinthine network of institutional and sociological fields that can make a stuffed shark a highly successful and valuable work of art. I argued that the cultural mandate—what Andy Crouch calls “the relentless, restless human effort to take the world as it’s given to us and make something else”—includes the messy and sometimes unsightly and smelly sausage-making that characterizes the means and mechanisms by which art makes its way from the studio to galleries, private collections, and museums. I went further to suggest that with its holy days, liturgies, relics, and other practices that maintain belief, the art world operates like a religion. And that should command our interest, whether or not we like the stuffed shark or find problematic aspects of the institutional framework that made it possible.

    But there is a much darker side to the contemporary art world, which economist Don Thompson explores in The $12 Million Stuffed Shark: The Curious Economics of Contemporary Art (Palgrave/ Macmillan, 2008). The book analyzes the mystifying economic structure that characterizes contemporary art at the highest echelons. For Thompson, this art world is defined by insecurity. “Never underestimate,” states an auction house director, “how insecure buyers are about contemporary art, and how much they always need reassurance.” Insecurity is the fuel that powers the network of auction houses, galleries, museums, and interpretation, which serve as validating mechanisms, reinforcing decisions to acquire, represent, exhibit, or review an artist’s work. Thompson’s book suggests that this rarely has to do with the quality of the work of art itself, but the leverage of secondary indicators. “The value of art often has more to do with artist, dealer, or auction-house branding, and with collector ego, than it does with art.” But the collector’s ego is fragile. “Most of all,” Thompson writes, “they want reassurance that, when they hang the art their friends will not ridicule their purchase.” Whether it is $12 million for a stuffed shark or $200,000 for a canvas with oil paints smeared on it, collectors need to be confident that their purchase brings power, prestige, and cultural capital.

    Artists who work at this elite level know this and develop their own strategies to provide such reassurance. “The job of the artist,” Francis Bacon once said, “is always to deepen the mystery.” The strange personas and outrageous gestures of Andy Warhol, Joseph Beuys, Damien Hirst, Jeff Koons, and Maurizio Cattelan are intentionally crafted efforts to enchant collectors, easing their insecurity. In an age when collectors and dealers regularly consult a website called Artfacts (www.artfacts.net), which ranks artists like stocks, rising and falling on a daily basis, such strategies are absolutely necessary to preserve any creative autonomy and human integrity.

    The insecurity that haunts collectors and dealers can crush artists, forcing them into a high-stakes game of behavioral poker, in which their very livelihoods and identities are determined by a small group of wealthy but unpredictable collectors pursuing entertainment and validation. To dismiss this as antithetical to the integrity of art over-idealizes it and distorts the social and institutional fabric from which the work emerges. Moreover, this situation is the same for a painter of landscapes as it is for Damien Hirst.  It was also the same for artists like Munch, whose decision to return to Norway was a strategic effort to diversify the market for his work before the outbreak of World War I.

    Edvard Munch in his studio, 1938

    Culture and Law & Gospel

    For the Lutheran and Reformed traditions, the cultural mandate is the foundation upon which vocation is built, encouraging culture-making and faithful presence in contemporary culture. After the Fall, however, we must exercise this God-given responsibility and desire to cultivate the earth east of Eden, in Cain’s city of Enoch. Culture thus bears the mark of Cain, the curse of toil and hardship. It is what is produced by our desperate wanderings, geographically and spiritually, and our greatest cultural monuments are often wrought through violence and death. Leo Tolstoy’s wife, Sofia, who sacrificed her life to serve her husband, wondered how many people would have to be consumed to enable the fire of genius to burn. It is impossible to read  The Death of Ivan Ilych or Anna Karenina and not consider the pain and misery that the production of these undeniably humanizing works caused to the author’s friends and family, not to mention to Tolstoy himself.

    This is tragic because great works of culture, whether paintings, poems, or cathedrals, are embodiments of a God-given urge for eternity, monuments to their maker’s existence, to their physical and emotional presence as image-bearers of God, and their ultimate identity in Christ. They can be a beautiful defiance of their mortality and a powerful intuition of grace, which is God’s final Word. Crouch writes in Culture Making, “All our culture making must be bound up in this prayer—that what we make of the world will last after the world itself has been rolled up like a scroll.” This is as true of the non-Christian as it is for the Christian. This is also why art often functions like a religion–it is an aesthetic means of justification.  But as a religion, it is based on law. And it can crush, even while it inexplicably produces work that sings the melody of grace.

    The “curious economics of contemporary art” that Thompson explores is the result of the internalization of insecurity and unsatisfied desire—that is, law. Modern and contemporary art becomes what Reformed pastor and author Tullian Tchividjian has called “self-salvation projects,” characterized by the efforts “to do more/try harder.” Like the builders of the Tower of Babel, art becomes a means by which we  ”make a name for ourselves” (Gen.11: 4).

    Although Tchividjian’s primary target is the confusion of law and gospel that distorts the two words by which God makes himself known to us, it offers significant secondary implications for modern and postmodern cultural analysis. Horton observes, “Although the goal of the law, according to Paul, is to silence the world before God, modernity is one long filibuster in which the sovereign self refuses to yield even to the Speaker of the House.” What are we to make of works of art produced by such a filibustering sovereign self, crushed by the law, kicking the goads, and for whom art is the only salvation, the only hope for eternal life? From this vantage point, there is much more at stake than simply the merits of the stuffed shark as a work of art and talking about “worldview.” In fact, most Christian worldview thinking operates as a legal scheme that cuts one off from experiencing the presence of grace in contemporary art and culture.

    Grace and Art

    But the mark of Cain is not only a curse but also a blessing. “Because of God’s common grace,” Horton observes, “no culture is entirely devoid of any sense of truth, justice, and beauty.” As Paul writes in Colossians, it is in Christ that “all things” hold together, even poems and paintings made by filibustering sovereign selves. Viewed through the lens of Christ, who says from the cross, “It is finished,” we can receive these works, like The Scream and the stuffed shark, wrought from fear and violence, as gospel and as grace, receive them as part of the liberating power that frees us to create and experience, to make and be shaped by culture, and be a faithful presence in a world in which Christ is working to make all things new, and in whom we have all we need.

    Referring to the implications of justification through the finished work of Christ, Lutheran theologian Gerhard Forde asked, “What are you going to do now that you don’t have to do anything?” This is a freedom that can come only from beyond the hills (Psalm 121), a freedom no artist can manufacture, only receive, and to which the artist can only respond.

    ______

    __

    _

    ______________________

  • Related posts:
  • Johnny Cash (Part 4)

    I got to hear Johnny Cash sing in person back in 1978.  Here is a portion of an article about his Christian Testimony. The Man Came Around   “Being a Christian isn’t for sissies,” Cash said once. “It takes a real man to live for God—a lot more man than to live for the devil, […]

  • Johnny Cash a Christian?

    I got to see Johnny Cash perform in Memphis in 1978 and I actually knew his nephew very well. He was an outspoken Christian and evangelical. Here is an article that discusses this. Johnny Cash’s Complicated Faith Dave Urbanski <!– var fbShare = { google_analytics: ‘true’, } tweetmeme_source = ‘RELEVANTMag’; –> Unwrapping the enigma of […]

    Johnny Cash (Part 3)

    I got to hear Johnny Cash sing in person back in 1978.  Here is a portion of an article about his Christian Testimony. The Man Came Around   A Walking Contradiction Cash’s daughter, singer-songwriter Rosanne Cash, once pointed out that “my father was raised a Baptist, but he has the soul of a mystic. He’s […]

    Johnny Cash (Part 2)

    I got to hear Johnny Cash sing in person back in 1978 at a Billy Graham Crusade in Memphis. Here is a portion of an article about his Christian Testimony. The Man Came Around Cash also made major headlines when he shared his faith on The Johnny Cash Show, a popular variety program on ABC […]

    Johnny Cash (Part 1)

    I got to hear Johnny Cash sing in person back in 1978. Here is a portion of an article about his Christian Testimony. The Man Came Around Johnny Cash was not ashamed of his Christian faith—though it was sometimes a messy faith—and even got some encouragement from Billy Graham along the way. Dave Urbanski | […]

  • People in the Johnny Cash video “God’s Gonna Cut You Down”

    Wikipedia noted: Johnny Cash recorded a version of “God’s Gonna Cut You Down” on American V: A Hundred Highways in 2003, with an arrangement quite different from most known gospel versions of the song. A music video, directed by Tony Kaye,[1] was made for this version in late 2006. It featured a number of celebrities, […]

PREVENTING FISCAL MELTDOWNS WITH A SPENDING CAP by Dan Mitchell

Preventing Fiscal Meltdowns with a Spending Cap

As part of my recent interview about European economic policy with Gunther Fehlinger, I pontificated on issues such as Convergence and Wagner’s Law.

I also explained why a Swiss-style spending cap could have saved Greece and Italy from fiscal crisis. Here’s that part of the discussion.

For those not familiar with spending caps, this six-minute videotells you everything you need to know.

Simply stated, this policy requires politicians to abide by fiscal policy’s Golden Rule, meaning that – on average – government spending grows slower than the private economy.

And that’s a very effective recipe for a lower burden of spending and falling levels of red ink.

One of the points I made in the video is that spending caps would prevented the fiscal mess in Greece and Italy.

To show what I mean, I went to the International Monetary Funds World Economic Outlook database and downloaded the historical budget data for those two nations. I then created charts showing actual spending starting in 1988 compared to how much spending would have grown if there was a requirement that the budget could only increase by 2 percent each year.

Here are the shocking numbers for Greece.

The obvious takeaway is that there never would have been a fiscal crisis if Greece had a spending cap.

That also would be true even if the spending cap allowed 3-percent budget increases starting in 1998.

And it would be true if the 2-percent spending cap didn’t start until 2000.

There are all sorts of ways of adjusting the numbers. The bottom line is that any reasonable level of spending restraint could have prevented the horrible misery Greece has suffered.

Here are the numbers for Italy.

As you can see, the government budget has not increased nearly as fast in Italy as it did in Greece, but the burden of spending nonetheless has become more onerous – particularly when compared to what would have happened if there was a 2-percent spending cap.

I’ve written many times (here, here, here, and here) about Italy’s looming fiscal crisis. As I said in the interview, I don’t know when the house of cards will collapse, but it won’t be pretty.

And tax reform, while very desirable, is not going to avert that crisis. At least not unless it is combined with very serious spending restraint.

P.S. For those who want information about real-world success stories, I shared three short video presentations back in 2015 about the spending caps in Switzerland, Hong Kong, and Colorado.

P.P.S. It’s also worth noting that the United States would be in a much stronger position today if we had enacted a spending capa couple of decades ago.

March 31, 2021

President Biden  c/o The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500

Dear Mr. President,

Please explain to me if you ever do plan to balance the budget while you are President? I have written these things below about you and I really do think that you don’t want to cut spending in order to balance the budget. It seems you ever are daring the Congress to stop you from spending more.

President Barack Obama speaks about the debt limit in the East Room of the White House in Washington. | AP Photo

“The credit of the United States ‘is not a bargaining chip,’ Obama said on 1-14-13. However, President Obama keeps getting our country’s credit rating downgraded as he raises the debt ceiling higher and higher!!!!

Washington Could Learn a Lot from a Drug Addict

Just spend more, don’t know how to cut!!! Really!!! That is not living in the real world is it?

Making more dependent on government is not the way to go!!

Why is our government in over 16 trillion dollars in debt? There are many reasons for this but the biggest reason is people say “Let’s spend someone else’s money to solve our problems.” Liberals like Max Brantley have talked this way for years. Brantley will say that conservatives are being harsh when they don’t want the government out encouraging people to be dependent on the government. The Obama adminstration has even promoted a plan for young people to follow like Julia the Moocher.  

David Ramsey demonstrates in his Arkansas Times Blog post of 1-14-13 that very point:

Arkansas Politics / Health Care Arkansas’s share of Medicaid expansion and the national debt

Posted by on Mon, Jan 14, 2013 at 1:02 PM

Baby carrot Arkansas Medicaid expansion image

Imagine standing a baby carrot up next to the 25-story Stephens building in Little Rock. That gives you a picture of the impact on the national debt that federal spending in Arkansas on Medicaid expansion would have, while here at home expansion would give coverage to more than 200,000 of our neediest citizens, create jobs, and save money for the state.

Here’s the thing: while more than a billion dollars a year in federal spending would represent a big-time stimulus for Arkansas, it’s not even a drop in the bucket when it comes to the national debt.

Currently, the national debt is around $16.4 trillion. In fiscal year 2015, the federal government would spend somewhere in the neighborhood of $1.2 billion to fund Medicaid expansion in Arkansas if we say yes. That’s about 1/13,700th of the debt.

It’s hard to get a handle on numbers that big, so to put that in perspective, let’s get back to the baby carrot. Imagine that the height of the Stephens building (365 feet) is the $16 trillion national debt. That $1.2 billion would be the length of a ladybug. Of course, we’re not just talking about one year if we expand. Between now and 2021, the federal government projects to contribute around $10 billion. The federal debt is projected to be around $25 trillion by then, so we’re talking about 1/2,500th of the debt. Compared to the Stephens building? That’s a baby carrot.

______________

Here is how it will all end if everyone feels they should be allowed to have their “baby carrot.”

How sad it is that liberals just don’t get this reality.

Here is what the Founding Fathers had to say about welfare. David Weinberger noted:

While living in Europe in the 1760s, Franklin observed: “in different countries … the more public provisions were made for the poor, the less they provided for themselves, and of course became poorer. And, on the contrary, the less was done for them, the more they did for themselves, and became richer.”

Alexander Fraser Tytler, Lord Woodhouselee (15 October 1747 – 5 January 1813) was a Scottish lawyer, writer, and professor. Tytler was also a historian, and he noted, “A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the majority discovers it can vote itself largess out of the public treasury. After that, the majority always votes for the candidate promising the most benefits with the result the democracy collapses because of the loose fiscal policy ensuing, always to be followed by a dictatorship, then a monarchy.”

Thomas Jefferson to Joseph Milligan

April 6, 1816

[Jefferson affirms that the main purpose of society is to enable human beings to keep the fruits of their labor. — TGW]

To take from one, because it is thought that his own industry and that of his fathers has acquired too much, in order to spare to others, who, or whose fathers have not exercised equal industry and skill, is to violate arbitrarily the first principle of association, “the guarantee to every one of a free exercise of his industry, and the fruits acquired by it.” If the overgrown wealth of an individual be deemed dangerous to the State, the best corrective is the law of equal inheritance to all in equal degree; and the better, as this enforces a law of nature, while extra taxation violates it.

[From Writings of Thomas Jefferson, ed. Albert E. Bergh (Washington: Thomas Jefferson Memorial Association, 1904), 14:466.]

_______

Jefferson pointed out that to take from the rich and give to the poor through government is just wrong. Franklin knew the poor would have a better path upward without government welfare coming their way. Milton Friedman’s negative income tax is the best method for doing that and by taking away all welfare programs and letting them go to the churches for charity.

_____________

_________

Thank you so much for your time. I know how valuable it is. I also appreciate the fine family that you have and your commitment as a father and a husband.

Sincerely,

Everette Hatcher III, 13900 Cottontail Lane, Alexander, AR 72002, ph 501-920-5733

Williams with Sowell – Minimum Wage

Thomas Sowell

Thomas Sowell – Reducing Black Unemployment

By WALTER WILLIAMS

—-

Ronald Reagan with Milton Friedman
Milton Friedman The Power of the Market 2-5

Related posts:

Welfare Spending Shattering All-Time Highs

  We got to act fast and get off this path of socialism. Morning Bell: Welfare Spending Shattering All-Time Highs Robert Rector and Amy Payne October 18, 2012 at 9:03 am It’s been a pretty big year for welfare—and a new report shows welfare is bigger than ever. The Obama Administration turned a giant spotlight […]

We need more brave souls that will vote against Washington welfare programs

We need to cut Food Stamp program and not extend it. However, it seems that people tell the taxpayers back home they are going to Washington and cut government spending but once they get up there they just fall in line with  everyone else that keeps spending our money. I am glad that at least […]

Welfare programs are not the answer for the poor

Government Must Cut Spending Uploaded by HeritageFoundation on Dec 2, 2010 The government can cut roughly $343 billion from the federal budget and they can do so immediately. __________ Liberals argue that the poor need more welfare programs, but I have always argued that these programs enslave the poor to the government. Food Stamps Growth […]

Private charities are best solution and not government welfare

Milton Friedman – The Negative Income Tax Published on May 11, 2012 by LibertyPen In this 1968 interview, Milton Friedman explained the negative income tax, a proposal that at minimum would save taxpayers the 72 percent of our current welfare budget spent on administration. http://www.LibertyPen.com Source: Firing Line with William F Buckley Jr. ________________ Milton […]

The book “After the Welfare State”

Dan Mitchell Commenting on Obama’s Failure to Propose a Fiscal Plan Published on Aug 16, 2012 by danmitchellcato No description available. ___________ After the Welfare State Posted by David Boaz Cato senior fellow Tom G. Palmer, who is lecturing about freedom in Slovenia and Tbilisi this week, asked me to post this announcement of his […]

President Obama responds to Heritage Foundation critics on welfare reform waivers

Is President Obama gutting the welfare reform that Bill Clinton signed into law? Morning Bell: Obama Denies Gutting Welfare Reform Amy Payne August 8, 2012 at 9:15 am The Obama Administration came out swinging against its critics on welfare reform yesterday, with Press Secretary Jay Carney saying the charge that the Administration gutted the successful […]

Welfare reform part 3

Thomas Sowell – Welfare Welfare reform was working so good. Why did we have to abandon it? Look at this article from 2003. The Continuing Good News About Welfare Reform By Robert Rector and Patrick Fagan, Ph.D. February 6, 2003 Six years ago, President Bill Clinton signed legislation overhauling part of the nation’s welfare system. […]

Welfare reform part 2

Uploaded by ForaTv on May 29, 2009 Complete video at: http://fora.tv/2009/05/18/James_Bartholomew_The_Welfare_State_Were_In Author James Bartholomew argues that welfare benefits actually increase government handouts by ‘ruining’ ambition. He compares welfare to a humane mousetrap. —– Welfare reform was working so good. Why did we have to abandon it? Look at this article from 2003. In the controversial […]

Why did Obama stop the Welfare Reform that Clinton put in?

Thomas Sowell If the welfare reform law was successful then why change it? Wasn’t Bill Clinton the president that signed into law? Obama Guts Welfare Reform Robert Rector and Kiki Bradley July 12, 2012 at 4:10 pm Today, the Obama Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released an official policy directive rewriting the welfare […]

“Feedback Friday” Letter to White House generated form letter response July 10,2012 on welfare, etc (part 14)

I have been writing President Obama letters and have not received a personal response yet.  (He reads 10 letters a day personally and responds to each of them.) However, I did receive a form letter in the form of an email on July 10, 2012. I don’t know which letter of mine generated this response so I have […]

REMEMBERING MY VISIT IN 1996 WITH WALTER MONDALE’S BROTHER LESTER!

The Mondale siblings: Lester, Walter, Mort, Pete, and Clifford and Eleanor Archer (adopted sister)

Walter Mondale, Carter’s Vice President, Dies At 93

04-20-2021
In an Oct. 30, 2012, file photo, former Vice President Walter Mondale, a former Minnesota senator, gestures while speaking at a Students for Obama rally at the University of Minnesota  McNamara Alumni Center in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/Jim Mone, File)
In an Oct. 30, 2012, file photo, former Vice President Walter Mondale, a former Minnesota senator, gestures while speaking at a Students for Obama rally at the University of Minnesota McNamara Alumni Center in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/Jim Mone, File

I enjoyed my visit with Walter Mondale’s brother Robert Lester Mondale and his wife Rosemary  on April 14, 1996 at his cabin in Fredricktown, Missouri , and my visit was very enjoyable and informative. Mr. Mondale had the distinction of being the only person to sign all three of the Humanist Manifestos in 1933, 1973 and 2003.


Ricky Gervais act outs atheist bewilderment and frustration in the face of nice Christian nonsense

Carl Sagan – Parents

Carl Sagan said that he missed his parents terribly and he wished he could believe in the afterlife but he was not convinced because of the lack of proof. I had the opportunity to correspond back and forth with Carl Sagan.  I presented him evidence that the Bible was true and there was an afterlife,  but he would not accept the evidence.

Today I want to take another approach to the issue of the afterlife and that is the pure and simple fact that without an enforcement factor people can do what they want in this life and get away with it. This is a big glaring weakness in the Humanist Manifestos that have been published so far. All three of them do not recognize the existence of God who is our final judge. (I am not claiming that this is evidence that points to an afterlife, but this post will demonstrate that atheists many times have not thought through the full ramifications of their philosophy of life.)

I had the unique opportunity to discuss this very issue with Robert Lester Mondale and his wife Rosemary  on April 14, 1996 at his cabin in Fredricktown, Missouri , and my visit was very enjoyable and informative. Mr. Mondale had the distinction of being the only person to sign all three of the Humanist Manifestos in 1933, 1973 and 2003. I asked him which signers of Humanist Manifesto Number One did he know well and he said that Raymond B. Bragg, and Edwin H. Wilson  and him were known as “the three young radicals of the group.”  Harold P. Marley used to have a cabin near his and they used to take long walks together, but Marley’s wife got a job in Hot Springs, Arkansas and they moved down there.

Roy Wood Sellars was a popular professor of philosophy that he knew. I asked if he knew John Dewey and he said he did not, but Dewey did contact him one time to ask him some questions about an article he had written, but Mondale could not recall anything else about that. 

Mondale told me some stories about his neighbors and we got to talking about some of his church members when he was an Unitarian pastor. Once during the 1930’s he was told by one of his wealthier Jewish members that he shouldn’t continue to be critical of the Nazis. This member had just come back from Germany and according to him Hitler had done a great job of getting the economy moving and things were good.

Of course, just a few years later after World War II was over Mondale discovered on a second hand basis what exactly had happened over there when he visited with a Lutheran pastor friend who had just returned from Germany. This Lutheran preacher was one of the first to be allowed in after the liberation of the concentration camps in 1945, and he told Mondale what level of devastation and destruction of  innocent lives went on inside these camps. As Mondale listened to his friend he could feel his own face turning pale.

I asked, “If those Nazis escaped to Brazil or Argentina and lived out their lives in peace would they face judgment after they died?”

Mondale responded, “I don’t think there is anything after death.”

I told Mr. Mondale that there is sense in me that says  justice will be given eventually and God will judge those Nazis even if they evade punishment here on earth. I did point out that in Ecclesiastes 4:1 Solomon did note that without God in the picture  the scales may not be balanced in this life and power could reign, but at the same time the Bible teaches that all  must face the ultimate Judge.

Then I asked him if he got to watch the O.J. Simpson trial and he said that he did and he thought that the prosecution had plenty of evidence too. Again I asked Mr. Mondale the same question concerning O.J. and he responded, “I don’t think there is a God that will intervene and I don’t believe in the afterlife.”

Dan Guinn posted on his blog at http://www.francisschaefferstudies.org concerning the Nazis and evolution: As Schaeffer points out, “…these ideas helped produce an even more far-reaching yet logical conclusion: the Nazi movement in Germany. Heinrich Himmler (1900-1945), leader of the Gestapo, stated that the law of nature must take its course in the survival of the fittest. The result was the gas chambers. Hitler stated numerous times that Christianity and its notion of charity should be “replaced by the ethic of strength over weakness.” Surely many factors were involved in the rise of National Socialism in Germany. For example, the Christian consensus had largely been lost by the undermining from a rationalistic philosophy and a romantic pantheism on the secular side, and a liberal theology (which was an adoption of rationalism in theological terminology) in the universities and many of the churches. Thus biblical Christianity was no longer giving the consensus for German society. After World War I came political and economic chaos and a flood of moral permissiveness in Germany. Thus, many factors created the situation. But in that setting the theory of the survival of the fittest sanctioned what occurred. ” 

Francis Schaeffer notes that this idea ties into today when we are actually talking about making infanticide legal in some academic settings. Look at what these three humanist scholars have written:

  • Peter Singer, who recently was seated in an endowed chair at Princeton’s Center for Human Values, said, “Killing a disabled infant is not morally equivalent to killing a person. Very often it is not wrong at all.”
  • In May 1973, James D. Watson, the Nobel Prize laureate who discovered the double helix of DNA, granted an interview to Prism magazine, then a publication of the American Medical Association. Time later reported the interview to the general public, quoting Watson as having said, “If a child were not declared alive until three days after birth, then all parents could be allowed the choice only a few are given under the present system. The doctor could allow the child to die if the parents so choose and save a lot of misery and suffering. I believe this view is the only rational, compassionate attitude to have.”
  • In January 1978, Francis Crick, also a Nobel laureate, was quoted in the Pacific News Service as saying “… no newborn infant should be declared human until it has passed certain tests regarding its genetic endowment and that if it fails these tests it forfeits the right to live.”

Woody Allen’s 1989 movie, CRIMES AND MISDEMEANORS , was on this very subject of the Nazis that Lester Mondale and I discussed on that day in 1996 at Mondale’s cabin in Missouri.  In this film, Allen attacks his own atheistic view of morality. Martin Landau plays a Jewish eye doctor named Judah Rosenthal raised by a religious father who always told him, “The eyes of God are always upon you.” However, Judah later concludes that God doesn’t exist. He has his mistress (played in the film by Anjelica Huston) murdered because she continually threatened to blow the whistle on his past questionable, probably illegal, business activities. She also attempted to break up Judah’s respectable marriage by going public with their two-year affair. Judah struggles with his conscience throughout the remainder of the movie and continues to be haunted by his father’s words: “The eyes of God are always upon you.” This is a very scary phrase to a young boy, Judah observes. He often wondered how penetrating God’s eyes are.

Later in the film, Judah reflects on the conversation his religious father had with Judah ‘s unbelieving Aunt May at the dinner table many years ago:

“Come on Sol, open your eyes. Six million Jews burned to death by the Nazis, and they got away with it because might makes right,” says aunt May

Sol replies, “May, how did they get away with it?”

Judah asks, “If a man kills, then what?”

Sol responds to his son, “Then in one way or another he will be punished.”

Aunt May comments, “I say if he can do it and get away with it and he chooses not to be bothered by the ethics, then he is home free.”

Judah ‘s final conclusion was that might did make right. He observed that one day, because of this conclusion, he woke up and the cloud of guilt was gone. He was, as his aunt said, “home free.”

Woody Allen has exposed a weakness in his own humanistic view that God is not necessary as a basis for good ethics. There must be an enforcement factor in order to convince Judah not to resort to murder. Otherwise, it is fully to Judah ‘s advantage to remove this troublesome woman from his life. CAN A MATERIALIST OR A HUMANIST THAT DOES NOT BELIEVE IN AN AFTERLIFE GIVE JUDAH ONE REASON WHY HE SHOULDN’T HAVE HIS MISTRESS KILLED?

The Bible tells us, “{God} has also set eternity in the hearts of men…” (Ecclesiastes 3:11 NIV). The secularist calls this an illusion, but the Bible tells us that the idea that we will survive the grave was planted in everyone’s heart by God Himself. Romans 1:19-21 tells us that God has instilled a conscience in everyone that points each of them to Him and tells them what is right and wrong (also Romans 2:14 -15).

It’s no wonder, then, that one of Allen’s fellow humanists would comment, “Certain moral truths — such as do not kill, do not steal, and do not lie — do have a special status of being not just ‘mere opinion’ but bulwarks of humanitarian action. I have no intention of saying, ‘I think Hitler was wrong.’ Hitler WAS wrong.” (Gloria Leitner, “A Perspective on Belief,” THE HUMANIST, May/June 1997, pp. 38-39)

Here Leitner is reasoning from her God-given conscience and not from humanist philosophy. It wasn’t long before she received criticism. Humanist Abigail Ann Martin responded, “Neither am I an advocate of Hitler; however, by whose criteria is he evil?” (THE HUMANIST, September/October 1997, p. 2)

On the April 13, 2014 episode of THE GOOD WIFE called “The Materialist,” Alicia in a custody case asks the father Professor Mercer some questions about his own academic publications. She reads from his book that he is a “materialist and he believes that “free-will is just an illusion,” and we are all just products of the physical world and that includes our thoughts and emotions and there is no basis for calling anything right or wrong. Sounds like to me the good professor would agree wholeheartedly with the humanist Abigail Ann Martin’s assertion concerning Hitler’s morality too! Jean-Paul Sartre noted, “No finite point has meaning without an infinite reference point.”

Christians agree with Judah ‘s father that “The eyes of God are always upon us.” Proverbs 5:21 asserts, “For the ways of man are before the eyes of the Lord, and He ponders all his paths.” Revelation 20:12 states, “…And the dead were judged (sentenced) by what they had done (their whole way of feeling and acting, their aims and endeavors) in accordance with what was recorded in the books” (Amplified Version). The Bible is revealed truth from God. It is the basis for our morality. Judah inherited the Jewish ethical values of the Ten Commandments from his father, but, through years of life as a skeptic, his standards had been lowered. Finally, we discover that Judah ‘s secular version of morality does not resemble his father’s biblically-based morality.

Woody Allen’s CRIMES AND MISDEMEANORS forces unbelievers to grapple with the logical conclusions of a purely secular morality, and  the secularist has no basis for asserting that Judah is wrong.

Larry King actually mentioned on his show, LARRY KING LIVE, that Chuck Colson had discussed the movie CRIMES AND MISDEMEANORS with him. Colson asked King if life was just a Darwinian struggle where the ruthless come out on top. Colson continued, “When we do wrong, is that our only choice? Either live tormented by guilt, or else kill our conscience and live like beasts?” (BREAKPOINT COMMENTARY, “Finding Common Ground,” September 14, 1993)

Josef Mengele tortured and murdered many Jews and then lived the rest of his long life out in South America in peace. Will he ever face judgment for his actions?

The ironic thing is that at the end of our visit I that pointed out to Mr. Mondale that Paul Kurtz had said  in light of the horrible events in World War II that Kurtz witnessed himself in the death camps (Kurtz entered a death camp as an U.S. Soldier to liberate it) that it was obvious that Humanist Manifesto I was way too optimistic and it was necessary to come up with another one.  I thought that might encourage  Mr. Mondale to comment further on our earlier conversion concerning evil deeds, but he just said, “That doesn’t surprise me that Kurtz would say something like that.”

I noticed in Wikipedia:

The second Humanist Manifesto was written in 1973 by Paul Kurtz and Edwin H. Wilson, and was intended to update the previous one. It begins with a statement that the excesses of Nazism and world war had made the first seem “far too optimistic”, and indicated a more hardheaded and realistic approach in its seventeen-point statement, which was much longer and more elaborate than the previous version. Nevertheless, much of the unbridled optimism of the first remained, with hopes stated that war would become obsolete and poverty would be eliminated.

_________________

This is Lester Mondale’s obituary from the American Humanist Association:

R. Lester Mondale of Fredricktown, Missouri died on August 19, 2003, he was ninety-nine years old. Mondale was the last living signer of Humanist Manifesto I (he was the youngest to sign in 1933). He was also the only person to sign all three manifestos.

An AHA member perhaps since the organization’s founding, he received the AHA’s Humanist Pioneer award in 1973 and the Humanist Founder award in 2001. Mondale became a Unitarian minister after being raised a Methodist.

He was very active with the American Humanist Association, the American Ethical Union and served as president of the Fellowship of Religious Humanists in the 60’s and 70’s. Humanists Vice President Sarah Oelberg says that Mondale’s death marks “truly the end of an era” and AHA Director of Planned Giving Bette Chambers calls him “a great man, a great Humanist.”

Lester is survived by his wife, Rosemary, and four daughters: Karen Mondale of St. Louis, Missouri; Julia Jensen of St. Cloud, Minnesota; Tarrie Swenstad of Odin, Minnesota; and Ellen Mondale of Bethesda, Maryland. Also surviving him are his three brothers: Walter Mondale, former vice president of the United States, Pete Mondale, and Morton Mondale. Lester Mondale was also a proud grandparent of seven and a great-grandparent.

 

The Mondale siblings: Lester, Walter, Mort, Pete, and Clifford and Eleanor Archer (adopted sister); credit: University of Minnesota Law Library Archives

______________

Crimes and Misdemeanors: A Discussion: Part 1

Uploaded by  on Sep 23, 2007

Part 1 of 3: ‘What Does Judah Believe?’
A discussion of Woody Allen’s 1989 movie, perhaps his finest.
By Anton Scamvougeras.

http://camdiscussion.blogspot.com/
antons@mail.ubc.ca

________________________

Crimes and Misdemeanors: A Discussion: Part 2

Crimes and Misdemeanors: A Discussion: Part 3

Is the Bible historically accurate? Here are some of the posts I have done in the past on the subject: 1. The Babylonian Chronicleof Nebuchadnezzars Siege of Jerusalem2. Hezekiah’s Siloam Tunnel Inscription. 3. Taylor Prism (Sennacherib Hexagonal Prism)4. Biblical Cities Attested Archaeologically. 5. The Discovery of the Hittites6.Shishak Smiting His Captives7. Moabite Stone8Black Obelisk of Shalmaneser III9A Verification of places in Gospel of John and Book of Acts., 9B Discovery of Ebla Tablets10. Cyrus Cylinder11. Puru “The lot of Yahali” 9th Century B.C.E.12. The Uzziah Tablet Inscription13. The Pilate Inscription14. Caiaphas Ossuary14 B Pontius Pilate Part 214c. Three greatest American Archaeologists moved to accept Bible’s accuracy through archaeology.

The Bible and Archaeology (2/5)

___________________

Related posts:

Former atheist Antony Flew pointed out that natural selection can’t explain the origin of first life and in every other case, information necessarily points to an intelligent source!

______________ Does God Exist? Thomas Warren vs. Antony Flew Published on Jan 2, 2014 Date: September 20-23, 1976 Location: North Texas State University Christian debater: Thomas B. Warren Atheist debater: Antony G.N. Flew For Thomas Warren: http://www.warrenapologeticscenter.org/ ______________________ Antony Flew and his conversion to theism Uploaded on Aug 12, 2011 Antony Flew, a well known spokesperson […]

DARWINISM RECONSIDERED article from 2005 quotes Antony Flew, Richard Dawkins, Jonathan Miller, and Phillip Johnson

______________ William Lane Craig versus Eddie Tabash Debate Uploaded on Feb 6, 2012 Secular Humanism versus Christianity, Lawyer versus Theologian. Evangelical Christian apologist William Lane Craig debates humanist atheist lawyer Eddie Tabash at Pepperdine University, February 8, 1999. Visithttp://www.Infidels.org and http://www.WilliamLaneCraig.com ________________ Antony Flew on God and Atheism Published on Feb 11, 2013 Lee Strobel […]

Antony Flew interviewed by Benjamin Wiker and the two reasons Flew left atheism!!!

_______________________ Discussion (1 of 3): Antony Flew, N.T. Wright, and Gary Habermas Uploaded on Sep 22, 2010 A discussion with Antony Flew, N.T. Wright, and Gary Habermas. This was held at Westminster Chapel March, 2008 Debate – William Lane Craig vs Christopher Hitchens – Does God Exist? Uploaded on Jan 27, 2011 April 4, 2009 – Craig […]

Kyle Butt notes that Antony Flew left Atheism but fell short of making a profession of faith during his lifetime

_________________ Antony Flew – World’s Most Famous Atheist Accepts Existence of God Uploaded on Nov 28, 2008 Has Science Discovered God? A half-century ago, in 1955, Professor Antony Flew set the agenda for modern atheism with his Theology and Falsification, a paper presented in a debate with C.S. Lewis. This work became the most widely […]

Gary Habermas explains the reasons for Antony Flew’s change of mind

_____________   Antony Flew on God and Atheism Published on Feb 11, 2013 Lee Strobel interviews philosopher and scholar Antony Flew on his conversion from atheism to deism. Much of it has to do with intelligent design. Flew was considered one of the most influential and important thinker for atheism during his time before his […]

The finest article on Antony Flew’s long path from Atheism to Theism!!

___________________    This is the finest article yet I have read that traces Antony Flew’s long path from atheism to theism. How Anthony Flew – Flew to God Among the world’s atheists there was hardly any with the intellectual stature of Anthony Flew.  He was a contemporary with C.S. Lewis and has been a thorn in […]

Antony Flew incorrectly wrote that George Wald later abandoned atheism!!!

  Making Sense of Faith and Science Uploaded on May 16, 2008 Dr. H. Fritz Schaefer confronts the assertion that one cannot believe in God and be a credible scientist. He explains that the theistic world view of Bacon, Kepler, Pascal, Boyle, Newton, Faraday and Maxwell was instrumental in the rise of modern science itself. Presented […]

Antony Flew opened himself up to the possibility of accepting Christian teachings although never making a public profession of faith

Discussion (2 of 3): Antony Flew, N.T. Wright, and Gary Habermas ______________ Atheist Lawrence Krauss loses debate to wiser Christian Published on Sep 13, 2013 http://www.reasonablefaith.org More of this here The Bible and Science (Part 02) The Kalam Cosmological Argument (Scientific Evidence) (Henry Schaefer, PhD) Published on Jun 11, 2012 Scientist Dr. Henry “Fritz” Schaefer gives a lecture […]

Part of the reason Antony Flew left atheism can be found in this Paul Davies’ quote “Science can proceed only if the scientist adopts an essentially theological worldview!”

  Conversation with John Barrow Published on Jun 16, 2012 Templeton Prize 2006, Gifford Lectures 1988 British Academy, 1 June 2012 _______ Many Christians are involved in science and John D. Barrow is one of the leaders of science today. Here is his bio: John D Barrow John D. Barrow was born in London in […]

Antony Flew, “I was particularly impressed with Gerry Schroeder’s point-by-point refutation of what I call the MONKEY THEOREM” or the “the possibility of life arising by chance using the analogy of a multitude of monkeys banging away on computer keyboards and eventually ending up writing a Shakespearean sonnet!”

____________   Discussion (1 of 3): Antony Flew, N.T. Wright, and Gary Habermas Uploaded on Sep 22, 2010 A discussion with Antony Flew, N.T. Wright, and Gary Habermas. This was held at Westminster Chapel March, 2008 ___________   __________ Antony Flew, “I was particularly impressed with Gerry Schroeder’s point-by-point refutation of what I call the MONKEY […]

MUSIC MONDAY George Harrison Music

__

George Harrison’s best album is possibly ALL THINGS MUST PASS

_____________

George Harrison’s song MY SWEET LORD and what the word GOD actually means according to Francis Schaeffer

George Harrison – Blow Away

______________

The Beatles – For You Blue

The Beatles For You Blue Let It Be Sesions Rare Video

_________________

Great article at this link.

Living in the Material World

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
For the documentary film by Martin Scorsese, see George Harrison: Living in the Material World.
Living in the Material World
LITMW album cover (clean).jpg
Studio album by George Harrison
Released 30 May 1973
Recorded October 1972–March 1973; February 1971
Studio Apple Studio, London; FPSHOT, Oxfordshire; Abbey Road Studios, London
Genre
Length 43:55
Label Apple
Producer George Harrison
with Phil Spector on “Try Some, Buy Some
George Harrison chronology
The Concert for Bangladesh
(1971)
Living in the Material World
(1973)
Dark Horse
(1974)
Singles from Living in the Material World
  1. Give Me Love (Give Me Peace on Earth)
    Released: 7 May 1973 (US); 25 May 1973 (UK)

Living in the Material World is the fourth studio album by English musician George Harrison, released in 1973 on Apple Records. As the follow-up to 1970’s critically acclaimed All Things Must Pass and his pioneering charity project, the Concert for Bangladesh, it was among the most highly anticipated releases of that year. The album was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America two days after release, on its way to becoming Harrison’s second number 1 album in the United States, and produced the international hit “Give Me Love (Give Me Peace on Earth)“. It also topped albums charts in Canada and Australia, and reached number 2 in Britain.

Living in the Material World is notable for the uncompromising lyrical content of its songs, reflecting Harrison’s struggle for spiritual enlightenment against his status as a superstar, as well as for what many commentators consider to be the finest guitar and vocal performances of his career. In contrast with All Things Must Pass, Harrison scaled down the production for Material World, using a core group of musicians comprising Nicky Hopkins, Gary Wright, Klaus Voormann and Jim Keltner. Ringo Starr, John Barham and Indian musician Zakir Hussain were among the album’s other contributors.

Upon release, Rolling Stone described it as a “pop classic”, a work that “stands alone as an article of faith, miraculous in its radiance”.[1] Most contemporary reviewers consider Living in the Material World to be a worthy successor to All Things Must Pass, even if it inevitably falls short of Harrison’s grand opus. Author Simon Leng refers to the album as a “forgotten blockbuster”, representing “the close of an age, the last offering of the Beatles‘ London era”.[2] EMI reissued the album in 2006, in remastered form with bonus tracks, and released a deluxe-edition CD/DVD set that included film clips of four songs.

Background[edit]

I wouldn’t really care if no one ever heard of me again.[3]

– Harrison to Record Mirror in April 1972, during his year away from the public eye after the Concert for Bangladesh

George Harrison‘s 1971–72 humanitarian aid project for the new nation of Bangladesh had left him an international hero,[4][5][6] but also exhausted and frustrated in his efforts to ensure that the money raised would find its way to those in need.[7][8] Rather than record a follow-up to his acclaimed 1970 triple album, All Things Must Pass, Harrison put his solo career on hold for over a year following the two Concert for Bangladesh shows,[9][10] held at Madison Square Garden, New York, in August 1971.[11] In an interview with Disc and Music Echo magazine in December that year, pianist Nicky Hopkins spoke of having just attended the New York sessions for John Lennon‘s “Happy Xmas (War Is Over)” single, where Harrison had played them “about two or three hours” worth of new songs, adding: “They were really incredible.”[12] Hopkins suggested that work on Harrison’s next solo album was to begin in January or February at his new home studio at Friar Park,[12] but any such plan was undone by Harrison’s commitment to the Bangladesh relief project.[13][nb 1] While he found time during the last few months of 1971 to produce singles for Ringo Starr and Apple Records protégés Lon & Derrek Van Eaton, and to help promote the Ravi Shankar documentary Raga,[18][19] Harrison’s next project in the role of music producer was not until August 1972, when Cilla Black recorded his composition “When Every Song Is Sung“.[20]

Throughout this period, Harrison’s devotion to Hindu spirituality – particularly to Krishna consciousness via his friendship with A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada[21] – reached new heights.[22][23] As Harrison admitted, his adherence to his spiritual path was not necessarily consistent.[24][25] His wife, Pattie Boyd, and their friend Chris O’Dell would joke that it was hard to tell whether he was dipping into his ever-present Japa Yoga prayer bag or “the coke bag”.[26] This duality has been noted by Harrison biographers Simon Leng and Alan Clayson: on one hand, Harrison earned himself the nickname “His Lectureship” during his prolonged periods of fervid devotion;[27] on the other, he participated in bawdy London sessions for the likes of Bobby Keys‘ eponymous solo album and what Leng terms Harry Nilsson‘s “thoroughly nasty” “You’re Breakin’ My Heart“, both recorded in the first half of 1972.[19][28] Similarly, Harrison’s passion for high-performance cars saw him lose his driver’s licence for the second time in a year after crashing his Mercedes into a roundabout at 90 miles an hour, on 28 February, with Boyd in the passenger seat.[29][30][nb 2]

In August 1972, with the Concert for Bangladesh documentary film having finally been released worldwide, Harrison set off alone for a driving holiday in Europe,[15] during which he chanted the Hare Krishna mantra nonstop for a whole day, he later claimed.[32][33]Religious academic Joshua Greene, a Hare Krishna devotee, has described this trip as Harrison’s “preparation” for recording the Living in the Material World album.[33][nb 3]

Songs[edit]

A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, whose teachings influenced some of Harrison’s songs on the album

Rather than revisit compositions left over from the All Things Must Pass sessions, Harrison’s material for Living in the Material World was drawn from the 1971–72 period,[38] with the exception of “Try Some, Buy Some“, which he wrote in 1970 and recorded with former Ronette Ronnie Spector in February 1971.[39] The songs reflected his spiritual devotion[40] – in the case of “The Lord Loves the One (That Loves the Lord)“, “Living in the Material World“, “Give Me Love (Give Me Peace on Earth)” and “Try Some, Buy Some”[41][42] – as well as his feelings before and after the Bangladesh benefit concerts, with “Miss O’Dell” and “The Day the World Gets ‘Round“.[43]

All Things Must Pass might be better, but those songs [on Living in the Material World] are incredible … You can hear from the LP what his aim was; he definitely had a message he wanted to get across.[44]

Klaus Voormann, 2003

Both “The Lord Loves the One” and the album’s title track were directly inspired by Prabhupada’s teachings.[45][46] Greene writes of Harrison adapting a passage from the Bhagavad Gita into his lyrics for “Living in the Material World” and adds: “Some of the songs distilled spiritual concepts into phrases so elegant they resembled Vedic sutras: short codes that contain volumes of meaning.”[47] On “Give Me Love”, Harrison blended the Hindu bhajan style (or devotional song) with Western gospel music, repeating the formula of his 1970–71 international hit “My Sweet Lord“.[48] In his 1980 autobiography, I Me Mine, he describes the song as “a prayer and personal statement between me, the Lord, and whoever likes it”.[49]

Whereas Harrison’s Krishna devotionals on All Things Must Pass had been uplifting celebrations of faith,[50] his latest compositions betrayed a more austere quality,[44]partly as a result of the Bangladesh experience.[51] His musical arranger, John Barham, would later suggest that a spiritual “crisis” might have been the cause;[44] other observers have pointed to Harrison’s failing marriage to Boyd.[14][52][nb 4]Leng writes of his frame of mind at this time: “while George Harrison was bursting with musical confidence, Living in the Material World found him in roughly the same place that John Lennon was when he wrote ‘Help!‘ – shocked by the rush of overwhelming success and desperately wondering where it left him.”[54]

Other song themes addressed the Beatles‘ legacy,[55] either in direct references to the band’s history – in the case of “Living in the Material World” and “Sue Me, Sue You Blues[56][57] – or in Harrison’s stated desire to live in the present, free of his former identity, in the case of “The Light That Has Lighted the World“, “Who Can See It” and “Be Here Now“.[58] The lyrics to “Who Can See It” reflect Harrison’s disenchantment with his previous, junior status to former bandmates Lennon and Paul McCartney,[59] while “Sue Me, Sue You Blues” was his comment on McCartney’s 1971 High Court action to dissolve the band as a business entity.[60] In line with Prabhupada’s teachings, all such pursuits of fame, wealth or position meant nothing in Harrison’s 1972 world-view.[61] Author Gary Tillery writes of Material Worlds lyrical content: “The album expresses his impressions of the mundane and the spiritual worlds and the importance of ignoring the lures of the everyday world and remaining focused on the eternal verities.”[62] Even in seemingly conventional love songs such as “That Is All” and “Don’t Let Me Wait Too Long“,[63] Harrison appeared to be addressing his deity as much as any human partner.[64] Musically, the latter composition reflects the influence of Brill Building songwriters of the early 1960s,[65] while Harrison sings of a love delivered “like it came from above“.[55]

Harrison donated his copyright for nine of the eleven songs on Living in the Material World, together with the non-album B-side “Miss O’Dell”,[66] to his Material World Charitable Foundation.[67][nb 5] The latter initiative was set up in reaction to the tax issues that had hindered his relief effort for the Bangladeshi refugees,[68][70] and ensured a perpetual stream of income, through ongoing publishing royalties, for dispersal to the charities of his choice.[71]

Production[edit]

After the grand, Wall of Sound production of All Things Must Pass,[72] Harrison wanted a more understated sound this time around, to “liberate” the songs, as he later put it.[73][74] He had intended to co-produce with Phil Spector as before,[75] although the latter’s erratic behaviour and alcohol consumption[76] ensured that, once sessions were under way in October 1972, Harrison was the project’s sole producer.[77] Spector received a credit for “Try Some, Buy Some”, however,[78] since Harrison used the same 1971 recording, featuring musicians such as Leon Russell, Jim Gordon, Pete Ham and Barham,[79] that they had made for Ronnie Spector’s abandoned solo album.[80]

A release date was planned for January or February 1973, with the album title rumoured to be The Light That Has Lighted the World.[75] Within a month, the title was announced as The Magic Is Here Again,[81][82] with an erroneous report in Rolling Stone magazine claiming that Eric Clapton was co-producing and that the album was set for release on 20 December 1972.[77]

Recording[edit]

Phil was never there … I’d go along the roof at The Inn on the Park [hotel] in London and climb in his window yelling, “Come on! We’re supposed to be making a record.” … [Then] he used to have eighteen cherry brandies before he could get himself down to the studio.[83]

– Harrison discussing Phil Spector‘s early involvement on the album

In another contrast with his 1970 triple album, Harrison engaged a small core group of musicians to support him on Living in the Material World.[84][85] Gary Wright and Klaus Voormann returned, on keyboards and bass, respectively, and John Barham again provided orchestral arrangements.[77] They were joined by Jim Keltner, who had impressed at the 1971 Bangladesh concerts,[86]and Nicky Hopkins,[77] whose musical link to Harrison went back to the 1968 Jackie Lomax single “Sour Milk Sea“.[85] Ringo Starr also contributed to the album, when his burgeoning film career allowed,[87] and Jim Horn, another musician from the Concert for Bangladesh band, supplied horns and flutes.[77] The recording engineer was Phil McDonald, who had worked in the same role on All Things Must Pass.[88]

Apple Studio, where Harrison recorded part of Living in the Material World

All the rhythm and lead guitar parts were performed by Harrison alone[89] – the ex-Beatle stepping out from the “looming shadow” of Clapton for the first time, Leng has noted.[90] Most of the basic tracks were recorded with Harrison on acoustic guitar; only “Living in the Material World”, “Who Can See It” and “That Is All” featured electric rhythm parts, those for the latter two songs adopting the same Leslie-toned sound found on much of the Beatles’ Abbey Road (1969).[59][91] Ham and his Badfinger bandmate Tom Evans augmented the line-up on 4 and 11 October,[38] although their playing would not find its way onto the released album.[92]

The sessions took place partly at Apple Studio in London, but mostly at Harrison’s home studio, FPSHOT, according to Voormann.[77][93][nb 6] Apple Studio, together with its Savile Row, London W1 address, would receive a prominent credit on the Living in the Material World record sleeve, as a further sign of Harrison’s championing of the Beatles-owned recording facility.[93][97] At the weekends during these autumn months, Hopkins recorded his own solo album, The Tin Man Was a Dreamer (1973), at Apple,[85] with contributions from Harrison, Voormann and Horn.[98][99] Voormann has described the mood at the Friar Park sessions as “intimate, quiet, friendly” and in stark contrast to the sessions he, Harrison and Hopkins had attended at Lennon’s home in 1971, for the Imagine album.[95] Keltner recalls Harrison as having been focused and “at his peak physically” throughout the recording of Living in the Material World,[100] having given up smoking and taken to using Hindu prayer beads.[101]

The sessions continued until the end of November,[77] when Hopkins left for Jamaica to work on the Rolling Stonesnew album.[102] During this period, Harrison co-produced a new live album for Shankar and Ali Akbar Khan for a January release on Apple Records,[103] the highly regarded In Concert 1972.[104][nb 7]

Overdubbing and mixing[edit]

After hosting a visit by Bob Dylan and his wife Sara at Friar Park,[106] Harrison resumed work on the album in January 1973, at Apple.[107] “Sue Me, Sue You Blues”, which he had originally given to Jesse Ed Davis to record in 1971,[38] was taped at this point.[108] The lyrics’ courtroom theme had a new relevance in early 1973,[109] as he, Lennon and Starr looked to sever all legal ties with manager Allen Klein, who had been the prime cause for McCartney’s earlier litigation.[110][nb 8]

For the rest of January and through February, extensive overdubs were carried out on the album’s basic tracks[75] – comprising vocals, percussion, Harrison’s slide guitar parts and Horn’s contributions. “Living in the Material World” received significant attention during this last phase of the album production, with sitar, flute and Zakir Hussain‘s tabla being added to fill the song’s two “spiritual sky” sections.[77][nb 9] The resulting contrast between the main, Western rock portion and the Indian-style middle eights emphasised Harrison’s struggle between physical-world temptations and his spiritual goals.[115][116] The Indian instrumentation overdubbed on this track and “Be Here Now” also marked a rare return to the genre for Harrison,[117] recalling his work with the Beatles over 1966–68 and his first solo album, Wonderwall Music (1968).[118]

Barham’s orchestra and choir were the final items to be recorded, on “The Day the World Gets ‘Round”, “Who Can See It” and “That Is All”,[119] in early March.[77] With production on the album completed, Harrison flew to Los Angeles for Beatles-related business meetings[120] and to begin work on Shankar and Starr’s respective albums, Shankar Family & Friends (1974) and Ringo (1973).[54]

Album artwork[edit]

Lyric insert artwork for the album, taken from Bhagavad Gita As It Is

As he had done with All Things Must Pass and The Concert for Bangladesh, Harrison entrusted the album’s art design to Tom Wilkes,[121] and the latter’s new business partner, Craig Baun.[122][123] The gatefold and lyric insert sleeves for Living in the Material World were much commented-on at the time of release, Stephen Holden of Rolling Stone describing the record as “beautifully-packaged with symbolic hand-print covers and the dedication, ‘All Glories to Sri Krsna'”,[1] while author Nicholas Schaffner likewise admired the “color representations of the Hindu scriptures“,[81] in the form of a painting from a Prabhupada-published edition of the Bhagavad Gita.[73][124] Reproduced on the lyric insert sheet (on the back of which was a red Om symbol with yellow surround, on a black background),[125] this painting features Krishna with Arjuna, the legendary archer and warrior, in a chariot, being pulled by the enchanted seven-headed horse Uchchaihshravas.[121] With the album arriving at the height of the glam or glitter rock musical trend,[126] Clayson writes of this image: “a British teenager might have still dug the gear worn by Krishna in his chariot … Androgynous in beaded kaftan, jewelled fez and peacock feather, and strikingly pretty, the Supreme Personality of Godhead was not unlike some of the new breed of theatrical British chartbusters.”[127]

For the album’s striking front-cover image, Wilkes used a Kirlian photograph of Harrison’s hand holding a Hindu medallion.[128] The photo was taken at UCLA‘s parapsychology department, as was the shot used on the back cover, where Harrison instead holds three US coins: a couple of quarters and a silver dollar.[121]

The gatefold’s inner left panel, opposite the album’s production credits,[125] showed Harrison and his fellow musicians – Starr, Horn, Voormann, Hopkins, Keltner and Wright – at a long table, laden with food and wine.[121][129] A deliberate parody of da Vinci‘s The Last Supper,[130] the picture was taken in California at the mock-Tudor home of entertainment lawyer Abe Somers, by Hollywood glamour photographer Ken Marcus.[121][nb 10] As with the US coinage used on the back cover, various details in the photo represent what Harrison termed the “gross” aspects[131] of life in the material world.[121] Clayson has speculated about the symbolism and hidden messages within the photo: whether the nurse with a pram, set back from and to the left of the table, was a reference to Boyd’s inability to conceive a child; and the empty, distant wheelchair in memory of Harrison’s late mother.[129] Theologian Dale Allison observes the anti-Catholic sentiment within this inner-gatefold photo, following on from Harrison’s lyrics to his 1970 song “Awaiting on You All“.[130] Harrison is dressed as a priest, all in black, sporting an Old West six-shooter – “a slam at the perceived materialism and violence of the Roman church”, Allison writes.[130]

On the back cover, underneath the second hand-print design, text provides details of the fictitious Jim Keltner Fan Club,[132] information on which was available by sending a “stamped undressed elephant” – for: self-addressed envelope – to a Los Angeles postal address.[125] This detail was an affectionate thank-you to the popular drummer (Starr would repeat the gesture on his album later in the year), as well as a light-hearted dig – in its use of “wing” symbols, like those in Wings‘ logo[125] – at McCartney, who had recently launched a fan club for his new band.[121][132]

Release[edit]

Trade ad for the album’s lead single, May 1973

Due to the extended recording period, Living in the Material World was issued at the end of a busy Apple release schedule, with April and May 1973 having already been set aside for the Beatles compilations 1962–1966 and 1967–1970 and for Paul McCartney & Wings’ second album, Red Rose Speedway.[132][133] Schaffner recorded in his book The Beatles Forever: “For a while there … album charts were reminiscent of the golden age of Beatlemania.”[134] Preceding Harrison’s long-awaited release was the acoustic single “Give Me Love (Give Me Peace on Earth)”,[135] which became his second number 1 hit in the United States.[136] This was accompanied by a billboard and print advertising campaign,[137][138]including a three-panel poster combining the album’s front and back covers, and an Apple publicity photo showing Harrison, now free of the heavy beard familiar from the All Things Must Pass–Concert for Bangladesh era,[139] with his hand outstretched, mirroring Wilkes’ album cover image.[134][140]

Living in the Material World was issued on 30 May 1973 in America (with Apple catalogue number SMAS 3410) and on 22 June in Britain (as Apple PAS 10006).[141] It enjoyed immediate commercial success,[142] entering the Billboard 200 at number 11 and hitting number 1 in its second week, on 23 June, demoting Wings’ album in the process.[143] Material World spent five weeks atop the US charts, having been awarded a gold disc by the RIAA within two days of release, for advance orders.[144][145] In the UK, the album peaked at number 2, held from the top position by the soundtrack to Starr’s movie That’ll Be the Day.[146] Despite high sales initially, its follow-on success was limited by what Leng terms the “anomalous” decision to cancel the release of a second US single, “Don’t Let Me Wait Too Long”.[147]

With Living in the Material World, Harrison achieved the Billboard double for a second time when “Give Me Love” hit the top position during the album’s stay at number 1[73] – the only one of his former bandmates to have done it even once being McCartney, with the recent “My Love” and Red Rose Speedway.[145][148] Harrison carried out no supporting promotion for Material World; “pre-recorded tapes” were issued to BBC Radio 1 and played repeatedly on the show Radio One Club, but his only public appearance in Britain was to accompany Prabhupada on a religious procession through central London, on 8 July.[149] According to author Bill Harry, the album sold over 3 million copies worldwide.[150]

Critical reception[edit]

Contemporary reviews[edit]

Living in the Material World is a profoundly seductive record. Harrison’s rapt dedication infuses his musicality so completely that the album stands alone as an article of faith, miraculous in its radiance.[1]

Stephen Holden in Rolling Stone, June 1973

Leng describes Living the Material World as “one of the most keenly anticipated discs of the decade” and its unveiling “a major event”.[151] Among expectant music critics, Stephen Holden began his highly favourable[115][152] review in Rolling Stone with the words “At last it’s here”, before hailing the new Harrison album as a “pop classic” and a “profoundly seductive record”.[1] “Happily, the album is not just a commercial event,” he wrote, “it is the most concise, universally conceived work by a former Beatle since John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band.”[1] Billboard magazine noted the twin themes found throughout the album – “the Beatles and their mish-mash” versus a “spiritual undercoat” – and described Harrison’s vocals as “first-rate”.[153][154]

Two weeks ahead of the UK release date, Melody Maker published a full-page “exclusive preview” of Material World by its New York correspondent, Michael Watts.[155] The latter wrote that “the most strikingly immediate impression left by the album” concerned its lyrics, which, although “solemn and pious” at times, were “more interesting” thematically than those on All Things Must Pass, such that Material World was “as personal, in its own way, as anything that Lennon has done”.[156] While describing the pared-down production as “good artistic judgement in view of the nature of the lyrics”, Watts concluded: “Harrison has always struck me before as simply a writer of very classy pop songs; now he stands as something more than an entertainer. Now he’s being honest.”[156]

While Holden had opined that, of all the four Beatles, Harrison had inherited “the most precious” legacy – namely, “the spiritual aura that the group accumulated, beginning with the White Album[1] – other reviewers objected to the overt religiosity of Living in the Material World.[157][158] This was particularly so in Britain,[100][129] where by summer 1973, author Bob Woffinden later wrote, “the Beatle bubble had undoubtedly burst” and for each of the former bandmates, his individual “pedestal” was now “an exposed, rather than a comfortable, place to be”.[159]

It’s also breathtakingly unoriginal and – lyrically at least – turgid, repetitive and so damn holy I could scream.[160]

Tony Tyler, reviewing the album for NME

In the NME, Tony Tyler began his review by stating that he had long idolised Harrison as “the finest packaged object since frozen pizza”, but he had changed his opinion dramatically in recent years; after the “dire, ennui-making” All Things Must Pass, Tyler continued, “the unworthiness of my heretical thoughts smote home around the time of the Bangla Desh concerts.”[161] Tyler dismissed Material World with the description: “[It’s] pleasant, competent, vaguely dull and inoffensive. It’s also breathtakingly unoriginal and – lyrically at least – turgid, repetitive and so damn holy I could scream.”[161] The reviewer concluded: “I have no doubt whatever it’ll sell like hot tracts and that George’ll donate all the profits to starving Bengalis and make me feel like the cynical heel I undoubtedly am.”[160][161] In their 1975 book The Beatles: An Illustrated Record, Tyler and co-author Roy Carr bemoaned Harrison’s “didactically imposing [of] said Holy Memoirs upon innocent record-collectors” and declared the album’s spiritual theme “almost as offensive in its own way” as Lennon and Yoko Ono‘s political radicalism on Some Time in New York City (1972).[162]

They feel threatened when you talk about something that isn’t just “be-bop-a-lula”. And if you say the words “God” or “Lord”, it makes some people’s hair curl.[129]

– Harrison to Melody Maker in September 1971, pre-empting criticism of his lyrics on Material World[157]

According to New Zealand music critic Graham Reid, a contemporary Australian review remarked on the album’s religiosity: “oftentimes the music is a more truthful guide to the sense of the lyrics than the words themselves. Harrison is not a great wordsmith but he is a superb musician. Everything flows, everything interweaves. His melodies are so superb they take care of everything …”[57] Like Holden, Nicholas Schaffner approved of the singer’s gesture in donating his publishing royalties to the Material World Charitable Foundation and praised the album’s “exquisite musical underpinnings”.[81] Although the “transcendent dogma” was not always to his taste, Schaffner recognised that in Living in the Material World, Harrison had “devised a luxuriant rock devotional designed to transform his fans’ stereo equipment into a temple”.[163]

Aside from the album’s lyrical themes, its production and musicianship were widely praised, Schaffner noting: “Surely Phil Spector never had a more attentive pupil.”[67] Carr and Tyler lauded Harrison’s “superb and accomplished slide-guitar breaks”,[162] and the solos on “Give Me Love”, “The Lord Loves the One”, “The Light That Has Lighted the World” and “Living in the Material World” have each been identified as exemplary and among the finest of Harrison’s career.[89][90][164][165] In his book The Beatles Apart (1981), Woffinden wrote: “Those who carped at the lyrics, or at Harrison himself, missed a great deal of the music, much of which was exceptionally fine.”[78] Woffinden described the album as “a very good one”, Harrison’s “only mistake” being that he had waited so long before following up his successes over 1970–71.[166]

Retrospective assessment[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 4/5 stars[89]
Blender 4/5 stars[167]
Robert Christgau C[168]
Classic Rock 8/10[169]
Mojo 3/5 stars[170]
The Music Box 4/5 stars[171]
MusicHound 3.5/5[172]
Music Story 3.5/5 stars[173]
PopMatters 6/10 stars[174]
The Rolling Stone Album Guide 3.5/5 stars[175]

In the decades following its release, Living in the Material World gained a reputation as “a forgotten blockbuster” – a term used by Simon Leng[22] and echoed by commentators such as Robert Rodriguez[176] and AllMusic‘s Bruce Eder.[89] The latter describes Harrison’s 1973 album as “an underrated minor masterpiece” that “represent[s] his solo playing and songwriting at something of a peak”.[89] John Metzger of The Music Box refers to Material World as “the most underrated and overlooked album of [Harrison]’s career”, adding that it “coalesces around its songs … and the Zen-like beauty that emanates from Harrison’s hymns to a higher power inevitably becomes subtly affecting.”[171]

Writing in Rolling Stone in 2002, Greg Kot found the album “drearily monochromatic” compared to its predecessor,[177] and to PopMatters‘ Zeth Lundy, it suffers from “a more anonymous tract” next to the “cathedral-grade significance” of All Things Must Pass.[174] Reviewing Harrison’s solo career for Goldmine magazine in 2002, Dave Thompson considered the 1973 album to be the equal of All Things Must Pass, reasoning: “While history insists that Living in the Material World could not help but be eclipsed by its gargantuan forebear, with the two albums in the CD player and the ‘shuffle’ function mixing them up, it’s difficult to play favourites.”[178]

In his review of the 2006 remastered release, for Q magazine, Tom Doyle praised the album’s ballads, such as “The Light That Has Lighted the World” and “Be Here Now”, and suggested that “the distance of time helps to reveal its varied charms”.[179] Mojos Mat Snow wrote of “this long overdue reissue” being “worth it alone for four wonderful songs”, including “Don’t Let Me Wait Too Long” and “The Day the World Gets ‘Round”, and concluded: “The rest is Hari Georgeson at his most preachy, but it’s never less than musical and often light on its feet.”[170] In another 2006 review, for the Vintage Rock website, Shawn Perry wrote of Material World being “more restrained and immediate without the wall of sound whitewash of its predecessor, but its flow and elegance are unmistakable”. Perry admired Harrison’s slide guitar playing and rated the album an “underrated, classic record”.[180] Writing for Uncut in 2008, David Cavanagh described Material World as “a bit full-on, religion-wise” but “the album to play if you want musicianship at its best”.[181]

2014 appraisal and legacy[edit]

Reviewing the 2014 reissue, Blogcritics‘ Chaz Lipp writes that “this chart-topping classic is, in terms of production, arguably preferable to its predecessor”, adding: “The sinewy ‘Sue Me, Sue You Blues,’ galloping title track, and soaring ‘Don’t Let Me Wait Too Long’ rank right alongside Harrison’s best work.”[182] Alex Franquelli of PopMatters refers to it as “a worthy successor” to All Things Must Pass and an album that “raises the bar of social awareness that had only been touched on lightly in the previous release”. Franquelli concludes: “It is a work that enjoys a more elaborate dynamic development, where layers are kept together by Harrison’s clever work behind the mixing desk.”[183] In another 2014 review, for Classic Rock, Paul Trynka writes: “All these years on, it’s his most overtly spiritual album that sparkles today … The well-known songs, such as ‘Sue Me, Sue You Blues’ (dedicated to the rapacious Allen Klein), stand up well, but it’s the more restrained tracks – ‘Don’t Let Me Wait Too Long’, ‘Who Can See It’ – that entrance: gorgeous pop songs, all the more forceful for their restraint.” Trynka goes on to describe “Be Here Now” as the album’s “towering achievement” and “a masterpiece”.[184][185]

Among Beatles biographers, Alan Clayson approves of Material Worlds “self-production criterion closer to the style of George Martin“, after the “looser abundance” of All Things Must Pass.[186] Within the more restrained surroundings, Clayson adds, Harrison laid claim to the title “king of rock ‘n’ roll slide guitar”, in addition to giving perhaps his “most magnificent [vocal] performance on record” on “Who Can See It”.[164] Rodriguez also approves of a production aesthetic that allows instruments to “sparkle” and “breathing space” for his melodies, and rates Harrison’s guitar playing as “stellar” throughout.[187] Peter Lavezzoli describes the album as “a soulful collection of songs that feature some of Harrison’s finest singing, particularly the gorgeous Roy Orbison-esque ballad ‘Who Can See It'”.[158]

Leng has named Living in the Material World as his personal favourite of all of Harrison’s solo albums.[188] According to Leng, with its combination of a defiant “protest” song in “The Day the World Gets ‘Round”, the anti-stardom “The Lord Loves the One”, and “perfect pop confections” in “Give Me Love” and “Don’t Let Me Wait Too Long”, Living in the Material World was the last album to capture the same clear-sighted, utopian spirit that characterised the 1960s.[189] Eder likewise welcomes Material Worlds bold idealism, saying: “Even in the summer of 1973, after years of war and strife and disillusionment, some of us were still sort of looking – to borrow a phrase from a Lennon–McCartney song – or hoping to get from them something like ‘the word’ that would make us free. And George, God love him, had the temerity to actually oblige …”[89]

Reissues[edit]

2006[edit]

While solo works by Lennon, McCartney and Starr had all been remastered as part of repackaging campaigns during the 1990s and early 21st century, Harrison’s Living in the Material World was “neglected over the years”, author Bruce Spizer wrote in 2005, an “unfortunate” situation considering the quality of its songs.[77] On 25 September 2006, EMI reissued the album in the UK, on CD and in a deluxe CD/DVD package,[190] with Capitol Records‘ US release following the next day.[191] The remastered Material World featured two additional tracks,[192] neither of which had previously been available on an album:[193]Deep Blue” and “Miss O’Dell”, popular B-sides, respectively, to the 1971 non-album single “Bangla Desh” and “Give Me Love (Give Me Peace on Earth)”.[174] The CD/DVD edition contained a 40-page full colour booklet[190] that included extra photos from the inner-gatefold shoot (taken by Mal Evans and Barry Feinstein), liner notes by Kevin Howlett, and Harrison’s handwritten lyrics and comments on the songs, reproduced from I Me Mine.[194]

The DVD featured a concert performance of “Give Me Love”, recorded during Harrison’s 1991 Japanese tour with Eric Clapton,[191] and previously unreleased versions of “Miss O’Dell” and “Sue Me, Sue You Blues” set to a slideshow of archival film.[190] The final selection consisted of the album’s title track playing over 1973 footage[190] of the LP being audio-tested and packaged prior to shipment.[171] While Zeth Lundy found that the deluxe edition “bestows lavish attention upon a record that may not exactly deserve it”, with the DVD “an unnecessary bonus”,[174] Shawn Perry considered the supplementary disc to be possibly the “pièce de résistance” of the 2006 reissue, and concluded: “this package is a beautiful tribute to the late and great guitarist any Beatles and Harrison fan will cherish.”[180]

2014[edit]

Living in the Material World was remastered again for inclusion in the Harrison box set The Apple Years 1968–75, issued in September 2014.[195] Also available as a separate CD, the reissue reproduces Howlett’s 2006 essay and adds “Bangla Desh” as a third bonus track, after “Deep Blue” and “Miss O’Dell”.[196] In his preview of the 2014 reissues, for Rolling Stone, David Fricke pairs Material World with All Things Must Pass as representing “the heart of the [box] set”.[197] Disc eight of The Apple Years includes the four items featured on the 2006 deluxe edition DVD.[196]

Track listing[edit]

All songs written by George Harrison.

Original release[edit]

Side one

  1. Give Me Love (Give Me Peace on Earth)” – 3:36
  2. Sue Me, Sue You Blues” – 4:48
  3. The Light That Has Lighted the World” – 3:31
  4. Don’t Let Me Wait Too Long” – 2:57
  5. Who Can See It” – 3:52
  6. Living in the Material World” – 5:31

Side two

  1. The Lord Loves the One (That Loves the Lord)” – 4:34
  2. Be Here Now” – 4:09
  3. Try Some, Buy Some” – 4:08
  4. The Day the World Gets ‘Round” – 2:53
  5. That Is All” – 3:43

2006 remaster[edit]

Bonus tracks

  1. Deep Blue” – 3:47
  2. Miss O’Dell” – 2:33

Deluxe edition DVD

  1. “Give Me Love (Give Me Peace on Earth)” (recorded live at Tokyo Dome on 15 December 1991)
  2. “Miss O’Dell” (alternative version)
  3. “Sue Me, Sue You Blues” (acoustic demo version)
  4. “Living in the Material World”

2014 remaster[edit]

Bonus tracks

  1. “Deep Blue” – 3:47
  2. “Miss O’Dell” – 2:33
  3. Bangla Desh” – 3:57

Personnel[edit]

Charts[edit]

Weekly charts[edit]

Original release
Chart (1973–74) Position
Australian Go-Set Top 20 Albums[198] 1
Belgian Albums Chart[199] 1
Canadian RPM 100 Albums[200] 1
Dutch MegaChart Albums[201] 5
French SNEP Albums Chart[202] 10
Italian Albums Chart[203] 4
Japanese Oricon LPs Chart[204] 9
Norwegian VG-lista Albums[205] 4
Spanish Albums Chart[206] 1
Swedish Kvällstoppen Chart[199][207] 2
UK Albums Chart[208] 2
US Billboard Top LPs & Tape[209] 1
West German Media Control Albums[210] 20
Reissue
Chart (2006) Position
French SNEP Albums Chart[202] 14
Japanese Oricon Albums Chart[211] 33
US Billboard Top Pop Catalog[212] 36

Year-end charts[edit]

Chart (1973) Position
Australian Albums Chart[213] 24
Dutch Albums Chart[214] 39
French Albums Chart[215] 16
Italian Albums Chart[203] 34
US Billboard Year-End[216][217] 43

Certifications[edit]

Region Certification
United States (RIAA)[218] Gold

Notes[edit]

Related posts:

MUSIC MONDAY Rolling Stones New Album Part 8 Blue & Lonesome is the album any Rolling Stones fan would have wished for – review Neil McCormick, music critic

MUSIC MONDAY Rolling Stones New Album Part 8 Rolling Stones – Hoo Doo Blues Blue & Lonesome is the album any Rolling Stones fan would have wished for – review 9 Comments Evergreen: The Rolling Stones perform in Cuba earlier this year CREDIT: REX FEATURES Neil McCormick, music critic 22 NOVEMBER 2016 • 12:19PM The Rolling […]

MUSIC MONDAY Rolling Stones New Album Part 7 The Rolling Stones Alexis Petridis’s album of the week The Rolling Stones: Blue & Lonesome review – more alive than they’ve sounded for years

MUSIC MONDAY Rolling Stones New Album Part 7 Rolling Stones – Everybody Knows About My Good Thing The Rolling Stones Alexis Petridis’s album of the week The Rolling Stones: Blue & Lonesome review – more alive than they’ve sounded for years 4/5stars Mick Jagger’s voice and harmonica drive an album of blues covers that returns […]

MUSIC MONDAY Rolling Stones New Album Part 6 Music Review: ‘Blue & Lonesome’ by the Rolling Stones By Gregory Katz | AP November 29

MUSIC MONDAY Rolling Stones New Album Part 6 Rolling Stones – Just Like I Treat You   Music Review: ‘Blue & Lonesome’ by the Rolling Stones By Gregory Katz | AP November 29 The Rolling Stones, “Blue & Lonesome” (Interscope) It shouldn’t be a surprise, really, but still it’s a bit startling to hear just how well […]

MUSIC MONDAY Rolling Stones New Album Part 5 Review: The Rolling Stones make blues magic on ‘Blue & Lonesome’ Maeve McDermott , USATODAY6:07 p.m. EST November 30, 2016

MUSIC MONDAY Rolling Stones New Album Part 5 Rolling Stones – Everybody Knows About My Good Thing Review: The Rolling Stones make blues magic on ‘Blue & Lonesome’ Maeve McDermott , USATODAY6:07 p.m. EST November 30, 2016 (Photo: Frazer Harrison, Getty Images) Before the Rolling Stones were rock icons, before its members turned into sex […]

MUSIC MONDAY Rolling Stones New Album Part 4 Rolling Stones, ‘Blue & Lonesome’: Album Review By Michael Gallucci November 30, 2016 1:34 PM

MUSIC MONDAY Rolling Stones New Album Part 4 Rolling Stones – Little Rain       Rolling Stones, ‘Blue & Lonesome’: Album Review By Michael Gallucci November 30, 2016 1:34 PM Read More: Rolling Stones, ‘Blue & Lonesome’: Album Review | http://ultimateclassicrock.com/rolling-stones-blue-lonesome-review/?trackback=tsmclip The Rolling Stones were never really a thinking band. A shrewd one, for sure, […]

MUSIC MONDAY Rolling Stones New Album Part 3 Rolling Stones – ‘Blue & Lonesome’ Review Barry Nicolson 12:52 pm – Dec 2, 2016

MUSIC MONDAY Rolling Stones New Album Part 3 The Rolling Stones Mick Jagger chats about new album “Blue & Lonesome” on BBC Breakfast 02 Dec 2016 Rolling Stones – I Gotta Go     Rolling Stones – ‘Blue & Lonesome’ Review Barry Nicolson 12:52 pm – Dec 2, 2016 57shares The Stones sound their youngest […]

MUSIC MONDAY Rolling Stones New Album Part 2 Review The Rolling Stones’ new blues album is an amplified death wheeze. And it rules

MUSIC MONDAY Rolling Stones New Album Part 1 Review: The Rolling Stones Reinvigorate the Blues on ‘Blue and Lonesome’ Our take on rock legends’ first LP since 2005

MUSIC MONDAY Rolling Stones New Album Part 1 The Rolling Stones – Ride ‘Em On Down Published on Dec 1, 2016 Taken from Blue & Lonesome, the brand new album out now. Buy it at http://www.rollingstones.com/blueandl&#8230;. Directed by François Rousselet http://www.riffrafffilms.tv/video/dir&#8230; Produced by Natalie Arnett Riff Raff Films http://www.riffrafffilms.tv http://www.rollingstones.com/http://www.facebook.com/therollingstones http://twitter.com/RollingStoneshttp://www.rollingstones.com/newsletter Rolling Stones […]

MUSIC MONDAY Karen Carpenter’s tragic story

_____________ Carpenters Close To You Karen Carpenter’s tragic story Karen Carpenter’s velvet voice charmed millions in the 70s… but behind the wholesome image she was in turmoil. Desperate to look slim on stage – and above all desperate to please the domineering mother who preferred her brother – she became the first celebrity victim of […]

MUSIC MONDAY The Carpenters!!!

carpenters -We’ve Only Just Begun The Carpenters – Yesterday Once More (INCLUDES LYRICS) The Carpenters – There’s a kind of hush The Carpenters – Greatest Hits Related posts: MUSIC MONDAY Paul McCartney Mull Of Kintyre November 13, 2016 – 10:29 am Paul McCartney Mull Of Kintyre-Original Video-HQ Uploaded on Nov 25, 2011 Paul McCartney Mull Of […]

__

MUSIC MONDAY Paul McCartney’s song “Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey”

________

Paul McCartney Uncle Albert Rare Studio Demo

Paul McCartney; Uncle AlbertAdmiral Halsey. (RAM 1971)

Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
 
 
“Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey”
Single by Paul and Linda McCartney
from the album Ram
B-side Too Many People
Released 2 August 1971 (US only)
Format 7″
Recorded 6 November 1970
Genre
Length 4:49
Label Apple
Writer(s) Paul and Linda McCartney
Producer(s) Paul and Linda McCartney
Paul and Linda McCartney singles chronology
Another Day
(1971)
Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey
(1971)
The Back Seat of My Car
(1971)
Ram track listing
 

Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey” is a song by Paul and Linda McCartney from the album Ram. Released in the United States as a single on 2 August 1971,[1] but premiering on WLS the previous week (as a “Hit Parade Bound” (HPB)),[2] it reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100 on 4 September 1971,[3][4] making it the first of a string of post-Beatles, McCartney-penned singles to top the US pop chart during the 1970s and 1980s. Billboard ranked it number 22 on its Top Pop Singles of 1971 year-end chart.[5]

Elements and interpretation[edit]

https://youtu.be/XI6C7L66zq8
“Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey” is composed of several unfinished song fragments that McCartney stitched together similar to the medleys from the Beatles‘ album Abbey Road.[6] The song is noted for its sound effects, including the sounds of a thunderstorm, with rain, heard between the first and second stanza, the sound of a telephone ringing, and a message machine, heard after the second stanza, and a sound of chirping sea birds and wind by the seashore. Linda’s voice is heard in the harmonies as well as the bridge section of the “Admiral Halsey” portion of the song.

McCartney said “Uncle Albert” was based on his uncle. “He’s someone I recall fondly, and when the song was coming it was like a nostalgia thing.”[7] McCartney also said, “As for Admiral Halsey, he’s one of yours, an American admiral”, referring to Fleet Admiral William “Bull” Halsey (1882–1959).[7] McCartney has described the “Uncle Albert” section of the song as an apology from his generation to the older generation, and Admiral Halsey as an authoritarian figure who ought to be ignored.[8]

Despite the disparate elements that make up the song, author Andrew Grant Jackson discerns a coherent narrative to the lyrics, related to McCartney’s emotions in the aftermath of the Beatles’ breakup.[9] In this interpretation, the song begins with McCartney apologizing to his uncle for getting nothing done, and being easily distracted and perhaps depressed in the lethargic “Uncle Albert” section.[9] Then, after some sound effects reminiscent of “Yellow Submarine,” Admiral Halsey appears to him calling him to action, although McCartney remains more interested in “tea and butter pie.” McCartney stated that he put the butter in the pie so that it would not melt at all.[9] Jackson sees a possible sinister allusion in the use of Admiral Halsey as a character in the song, since Halsey was famous for fighting the Japanese in World War II and claiming that “after the war, the Japanese language will be spoken only in hell,” and McCartney’s ex-Beatle partner John Lennon had recently married a Japanese woman, Yoko Ono.[9] The “hands across the water” section which follows could be taken as evocative of the command “All hands on deck!”, rousing McCartney to action, perhaps to compete with Lennon.[9] The song then ends with the “gypsy” section, in which McCartney resolves to get back on the road and perform his music, now that he was on his own without his former bandmates who no longer wanted to tour.[9]

Reception[edit]

Paul McCartney won the Grammy Award for Best Arrangement Accompanying Vocalists in 1971 for the song.[10][11] The single was certified Gold by the Recording Industry Association of America for sales of over one million copies.[12]

According to Allmusic critic Stewart Mason, fans of Paul McCartney’s music are divided in their opinions of this song.[13] Although some fans praise it as “one of his most playful and inventive songs” others criticize it for being “exactly the kind of cute self-indulgence that they find so annoying about his post-Beatles career.”[13] Mason himself considers it “churlish” to be annoyed by the song, given that song isn’t intended to be completely serious, and praises the “Hands across the water” section as being “lovably giddy.”[13]

On the US charts, the song set a songwriting milestone as the all-time songwriting record (at the time) for the most consecutive calendar years to write a #1 song. This gave McCartney eight consecutive years (starting with “I Want to Hold Your Hand“), leaving behind Lennon with only seven years.

Later release[edit]

“Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey” also appears on Wings Greatest from 1978, even though Ram was not a Wings album, and again on the US version of McCartney’s 1987 compilation, All the Best!, as well as the 2001 compilation Wingspan: Hits and History.

Personnel[edit]

Song uses[edit]

Charts[edit]

Peak positions[edit]

Chart (1971) Position
Australian Kent Music Report[14] 5
Canadian RPM Top 100 Singles[15] 1
Mexican Singles Chart[16] 3
U.S. Billboard Hot 100[4] 1
West German Media Control Singles Chart[17] 30

Year-end charts[edit]

Chart (1971) Position
Canadian RPM Singles Chart[18] 14
U.S. Billboard Top Pop Singles[16] 22

Certifications[edit]

Region Certification
United States (RIAA)[19] Gold

Notes[edit]

  1. Jump up^ McGee 2003, p. 195.
  2. Jump up^ “89WLS Hit Parade”. 1971-08-02. Retrieved 2013-12-21.
  3. Jump up^ Billboard.
  4. ^ Jump up to:a b “Allmusic: Paul McCartney: Charts & Awards”. allmusic.com. Retrieved 2 May 2013.
  5. Jump up^ “Top Pop 100 Singles” Billboard December 25, 1971: TA-36
  6. Jump up^ Blaney, J. (2007). Lennon and McCartney: together alone: a critical discography of their solo work. Jawbone Press. pp. 46, 50. ISBN 978-1-906002-02-2.
  7. ^ Jump up to:a b McGee 2003, p. 196.
  8. Jump up^ Benitez, V.P. (2010). The Words and Music of Paul McCartney: The Solo Years. Praeger. pp. 30–31. ISBN 978-0-313-34969-0.
  9. ^ Jump up to:a b c d e f Jackson, A.G. (2012). Still the Greatest: The Essential Songs of The Beatles’ Solo Careers. Scarecrow Press. ISBN 978-0810882225.
  10. Jump up^ “Past Winners Search”. National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences. Retrieved 2 May 2014.
  11. Jump up^ “1971 Grammy Awards”.
  12. Jump up^ riaa.com
  13. ^ Jump up to:a b c Mason, S. “Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey”. Allmusic. Retrieved 2013-12-25.
  14. Jump up^ Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992. St Ives, NSW: Australian Chart Book. ISBN 0-646-11917-6.
  15. Jump up^ “Top Singles – Volume 16, No. 5”. RPM. 18 September 1971. Retrieved 5 May 2013.
  16. ^ Jump up to:a b Nielsen Business Media, Inc (25 December 1971). Billboard – Talent in Action 1971. Retrieved 1 May 2014.
  17. Jump up^ “Single Search: Paul and Linda McCartney – “Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey”” (in German). Media Control. Retrieved 20 February 2013.
  18. Jump up^ “RPM 100 Top Singles of 1971”. RPM. 8 January 1972. Retrieved 11 March 2014.
  19. Jump up^ “American single certifications – Paul Mc Cartney – Uncle Albert”. Recording Industry Association of America. If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH

References[edit]

Preceded by
How Can You Mend a Broken Heart” by Bee Gees
Billboard Hot 100 number-one single
4 September 1971 (one week)
Succeeded by
Go Away Little Girl” by Donny Osmond
Preceded by
Sweet Hitch-Hiker” by Creedence Clearwater Revival
Canadian “RPM” Singles Chart number-one single
18 September 1971 – 2 October 1971 (three weeks)
Succeeded by
Maggie May” by Rod Stewart

Related posts:

MUSIC MONDAY I’m Waiting for the Man sung by Nico in 1982 (about waiting for drug fix)

I’m Waiting for the Man sung by Nico in 1982 (about waiting for drug fix) __________ Nico Icon documentary part 3 Nico Icon documentary part 4 NICO – I’m Waiting For The Man – (1982, Warehouse, Preston, UK) One of the top 10 songs from The Velvet Underground and Nico is the song “I’m Waiting […]

MUSIC MONDAY Nico’s sad story of drugs and her interaction with Jim Morrison

Nico’s sad story of drugs and her interaction with Jim Morrison Nico – These Days The Doors (1991) – Movie Trailer / Best Parts The Doors Movie – Back Door Man/When The Music’s Over/Arrest of Jim Morrison Uploaded on Jul 30, 2009 A clip from “The Doors” movie with “Back Door Man”, “When The Music’s […]

MUSIC MONDAY Christian Singer’s Controversial Journey Revealed in New Documentary: ‘I Placed Homosexuality on Jesus’ Shoulders’ Oct. 2, 2014 2:23pm Billy Hallowell

Dennis Jernigan – You Are My All In All Uploaded on Oct 18, 2009 Dennis Jernigan – You Are My All In All __________________________________________ Christian Singer’s Controversial Journey Revealed in New Documentary: ‘I Placed Homosexuality on Jesus’ Shoulders’ Oct. 2, 2014 2:23pm Billy Hallowell Singer-songwriter Dennis Jernigan has been making Christian music for decades, recording […]

MUSIC MONDAY Cole Porter’s songs “De-Lovely” and “Let’s misbehave”

Cole Porter’s songs “De-Lovely” and “Let’s misbehave”   ‘At Long Last Love’: Let’s Misbehave/De-Lovely Uploaded on Apr 1, 2009 Burt Reynolds and Cybil Shepherd give an extraordinarily charming performance of Cole Porter’s songs in Peter Bogdanovich’s absolutely wonderful tribute to the golden age of film musicals, ‘At Long Last Love’. _____________________ De-Lovely   From Wikipedia, […]

MUSIC MONDAY Cole Porter’s song’s “My Heart Belongs to Daddy”

________ _______ Cole Porter’s song’s “My Heart Belongs to Daddy” My Heart Belongs To Daddy Uploaded on Jun 20, 2010 Mary Martin became popular on Broadway and received attention in the national media singing “My Heart Belongs to Daddy”. “Mary stopped the show with “My Heart Belongs to Daddy”. With that one song in the […]

MUSIC MONDAY Cole Porter’s song “Love for Sale”

______________ Love For Sale (De-Lovely) Love for Sale (song) From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Jump to: navigation, search This article needs additional citations for verification. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. (September 2008) “Love for Sale“ Written by Cole Porter Published 1930 Form […]

MUSIC MONDAY Cole Porter’s song “Ev’ry Time We Say Goodbye”

Cole Porter’s song “Ev’ry Time We Say Goodbye” _________________ Natalie Cole – Ev’ry Time We Say Goodbye Ev’ry Time We Say Goodbye   From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia   Jump to: navigation, search   This article needs additional citations for verification. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be […]

MUSIC MONDAY Cole Porter’s song “So in Love”

Cole Porter’s song “So in Love” __________________ So in love – De-lovely So in Love From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Jump to: navigation, search For the song by Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark, see So in Love (OMD song). For the song by Jill Scott, see So in Love (Jill Scott song). Not to be […]

MUSIC MONDAY Cole Porter’s song “Night and Day”

____________________ Cole Porter’s song “Night and Day” Cole Porter´s Day and Night by Fred Astaire & Ginger Rogers Night and Day (song) From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Jump to: navigation, search This article includes a list of references, but its sources remain unclear because it has insufficient inline citations. Please help to improve this article […]

MUSIC MONDAY John Lennon and Bob Dylan Conversation mention Johnny Cash and his song “Big River”

Johnny Cash – Big River Uploaded on Jan 16, 2008 Grand Ole Opry, 1962 _______________________________ John Lennon and Bob Dylan Conversation mention Johnny Cash and his song “Big River” _______________________ Big River (Johnny Cash song) From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Jump to: navigation, search This article may require cleanup to meet Wikipedia’s quality standards. No […]

Pro-Life Pulitzer-Prize Winning Writer Paul Greenberg Passes Away

Pro-Life Pulitzer-Prize Winning Writer Paul Greenberg Passes Away

NATIONAL

DAVE ANDRUSKO   APR 7, 2021   |   6:21PM    WASHINGTON, DC

It was a very brief mention this morning, and I hope and trust that the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette will run a lengthy tribute to Mr. Greenberg, who died Tuesday. He was a hugely influential opinion-molder and ought to be recognized as such.

In 1969, Mr. Greenberg won a Pulitzer Prize for editorial writing for the (Pine Bluff) Commercial and was a Pulitzer finalist in 1978 and 1986.

In 1992 he moved to the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette to be the editorial page editor of the state’s largest and most influential newspaper. Mr. Greenberg was also the beneficiary of many, many other awards for journalistic excellence too numerous to list.

The Chicago Tribune once described Mr. Greenberg as “one of the most respected and honored commentators in America” and “An exceptional craftsman, he gives readers an aesthetic as well as political experience and has evoked comparisons to H.L. Mencken and William Allen White.”

All of that is true, and more.

I have written more than once about Mr. Greenberg, who spoke both at National Right to Life Conventions and the convention of Arkansas Right to Life, NRLC’s state affiliate. Typically I would be borrowing from one of many extraordinary insights on his part.

For example, “How to Think”, an extraordinary post.  I suspect I am only one of innumerable readers whose ability to reason about abortion and to cut through the pro-abortion fog was heightened by his deft ability to reason.

Another illustration. He once wrote a column which carried the headline, “The root of confusion.” The heart of this opinion piece was to illustrate the pretzel-like shape defenders of sex-selection abortions are forced into when they justify taking a child’s life for one reason and one reason only: she (and it is always a “she”) is the “wrong” sex.

Please follow LifeNews.com on Gabfor the latest pro-life news and info, free from social media censorship.

He used a fellow columnist who tried to have it both ways –be a good “liberal”  concerned for the weak and the powerless– but bow down to Planned Parenthood which always has and always will strongly opposes a ban on sex-selection abortions. The columnist eventually weaseled out, expressing no opinion of his own and asking what his readers thought.

Greenberg let him know what he thought of that:

“It’s the besetting sin of American opinion writing. I’ve lost count of the number of opinion pieces I see that have no opinion. Instead they weave all around some controversial question — like abortion, for example — without ever taking a clear stand.

“Our conflicted columnist’s big problem, his ethical dilemma, was symptomatic of those who don’t go back to first principles and think the abortion issue through. They don’t make the connection between the right to life and all the others subsidiary to it, like the right to equal treatment under the law.”

Greenberg’ works eloquently reinforced that foundational principle: if you “Deprive the most innocent of life”—if you abort them, regardless of reason—“they will never be able to exercise any of the others.”

With relentless precision, he drove home what ought to obvious, but is often overlooked–the quote we began this post with:

“The right to life must come first or all the others can never take root, much less flourish. As in the Declaration of Independence’s order of certain unalienable rights, among them ‘life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.’ Note which one is mentioned first. And for good, logical reason.”

Ronald Reagan once said something I will never forget: “There are no easy answers but there are simple answers. We must have the courage to do what we know is morally right.”

Greenberg adds his own flourish to this insight in his final paragraph of that post:

“Those who think of abortion as an oh-so-complicated question pitting many equal, competing rights against one another don’t see — or maybe just don’t want to see — that a society that can abrogate the right to life can abrogate any right. For if we don’t have a right to life, we have no rights whatsoever.”

LifeNews.com Note: Dave Andrusko is the editor of National Right to Life News and an author and editor of several books on abortion topics. This post originally appeared in at National Right to Life News Today —- an online column on pro-life issues.

Paul Greenberg (journalist) | Wikipedia audio article

On January 20, 2013 I heard Paul Greenberg talk about the words of Thomas Jefferson that we are all “endowed with certain unalienable rights” and the most important one is the right to life. He mentioned this also in this speech below from 2011:

Paul Greenberg Dinner Speech 2011 E-mail
Fall 2011 Issue
Some of you I have read after for years, others I have depended on for years—without ever having met you before this night. Every time a copy of the Human Life Review arrives in its plain brown wrapper, like a division of fresh reinforcements arriving at the front, I am grateful again for Maria McFadden Maffucci and her selfless corps of volunteers; her editors like Anne Conlon, her helpers, her subscribers, Grazi, signora!THANK YOU, all of you, at the Review. Praise the Lord and keep passin’ the ammunition.And Charmaine Yoest—and her people at Americans United for Life—those folks know their material, and keep up with every latest development. No wonder AUL has been described as the most influential group on Capitol Hill. Their numbers may be few, but I know their impact is huge, and not just on Capitol Hill. They’ve demonstrated that, occasionally, even Washington will listen to the voice of reason. Thank you, Charmaine Yoest.

And what a pleasure to finally meet Jack Fowler, through whom I got the rare privilege of actually corresponding with the legendary—if more than a bit reclusive—Florence King about doing a collection of her book reviews, most of which were far superior to the books she was reviewing. She’s a lady who tends to keep her own counsel, which is understandable. Hers is so much better than most people’s.

Each of us followed his own path to meet here tonight. Some came to the cause early; they were present at the creation of the Human Life Review in 1975. Others, like me, the slow learners, arrived late.

When Roe v. Wade was first pronounced from on high, I welcomed it. As a young editorial writer in Pine Bluff, Ark., I believed the court’s assurances that its ruling was not blanket permission for abortion, but a carefully crafted, limited decision applicable only in rare cases. Even Mr. Justice Blackmun, who wrote the majority opinion, told us that Roe did not grant blanket license for the killing of the innocents. He seems to have managed to fool even himself. He certainly fooled me. I swallowed the line whole, and regurgitated it regularly in learned editorials. For years. Though it took more and more effort to rationalize it as the years passed. It can be a strain, sophistry. But editorial writers can acquire a certain affinity for it.

The right to life need not be fully respected from conception, I earnestly explained. It grows with each stage of fetal development until a full human being is formed. (As if any of us even now are still not developing as human beings.) I went into all this in an extended debate in the columns of the Pine Bluff (Ark.) Commercial with a fiery young Baptist minister in town named Mike Huckabee. I kept trying to tell the Reverend Huckabee that life is one thing, personhood quite another. He wouldn’t buy it. Though it’s an engaging argument. For a fatal while. As if those of us who would confer personhood on others couldn’t just as easily revoke it. Over the long course of history, whenever we have decided that some category of human beings is less than fully human, and so their rights need not be fully respected, even their right to life, terrible consequences have followed. That we in this time in this country have grown used to the consequences of Roe, that we now pass over them as part of the ordinary backdrop of our lives, does not make those consequences any less terrible. But only more chilling. Call it the banality of evil. It is the oldest of temptations: Eat of the fruit of this tree and you shall be as gods, having the knowledge of good and evil, deciding who shall live and who shall die. Yes, I’d been taught by Mary Warters in her biology and genetics classes at Centenary College in Shreveport that human life was one unbroken continuity from life to death, and the code to its development was present from its very first, microscopic origin. From its conception. But I wanted to believe human rights developed differently, especially the right to life. As if we had not all been endowed with certain unalienable rights. My reasons were compassionate. Who would not want to spare mothers the burden of carrying the deformed? Why not just allow physicians to eliminate the deformity? End of Problem.

I hadn’t yet come across Flannery O’Connor’s warning that tenderness leads to the gas chambers. Then . . . one day . . . I don’t know exactly when . . . Something Happened.

It always does. Eventually. It just takes longer for some of us to catch on. But I couldn’t help noticing after a while that the number of abortions in this country had begun to mount year after year—into the millions. Perfectly healthy babies were being aborted for socio-economic reasons. And among ethnic groups, the highest proportions of abortions were being performed on black women. (Last I checked, something like 37 percent of American abortions were being done on African-American women, though they make up less than 13 percent of the U.S. population.) Eugenics was showing its true face again. And it isn’t pretty. No matter how hard a later generation has tried to clean up Margaret Sanger’s image as the sainted founder of Planned Parenthood. The truth has a way of outing. In this case, in her own self-incriminating words. Abortion was also touted as a preventive for poverty. All you had to do was eliminate the poor. Even before they were born. They were, in the phrase of the advanced, Darwinian thinkers of the last century, surplus population. With a little verbal manipulation, any crime can be rationalized, even promoted. Verbicide precedes homicide. First dehumanize the other, then anything is permitted. The trick is to speak of fetuses, not unborn children. So long as the victims are a faceless abstraction, anything can be done to them. Vocabulary remains the decisive turning point. Like the Little Round Top, of every political engagement.

Just don’t look too closely at those sonograms. The way I studied the first pictures of my first grandson. Astounding. We are indeed strangely and wonderfully made.

By now the toll has reached some 50 million of those wondrous creations aborted in America since 1973. That’s not some abstract theory or philosophical argument. It’s a fact, and facts are stubborn things. Some even carry their own imperatives with them. And can be ignored only so long. So I changed my mind, and changed sides.

There is something about the miracle that is life, and the moral imperative to respect that dignity . . . that in the end will not be denied. Whether the issue is civil rights in the middle years of the 20th Century or abortion and euthanasia today, a still small voice keeps asking: Whose side are you on? That of life of or death? And commands: Uvacharta b’chayim. Choose Life. Not just at the beginning but at the end. For beware: You start off opposing abortion and pretty soon you’ll be expressing doubts about infanticide and euthanasia, too. One thing leads to another. One realization, one moment of connection, one little detail in a news story, and the light will come on. Be careful. That’s all it may take.

When Terri Schiavo—that was her name, remember?—when she was denied food and water by order of the court, it took her 13 long, slow, agonizing days to die. Of dehydration. Thirteen days. It would have been kinder to shoot her. But that would have been against the law, and we all know the law is just. Funny how, long after you’ve forgotten everything else about some big story at the time, one detail will stick in your mind. Have you ever sat by the bedside of a dying patient—a father or mother, perhaps, or anyone you loved—and given the patient a little chipped ice? And seen, or at least imagined, the relief and inaudible thank you in the drug-dimmed eyes? After all the futile treatments and the succession of helpless doctors, when grief has come long before death, you sit there with a little cracked ice for her parched mouth and throat, and think . . . Well, dammit, at least I can do this one little thing. At least I’m not totally useless. However much or however little the ice might help the patient, it certainly helps the caregiver. You realize why people go into nursing. Can there be any greater satisfaction than this?

But when the law decreed that one Terri Schiavo was to be given no food or water, it meant no food or water. In any form. That’s what the court, the sheriff’s deputies at the hospital, the whole clanking machinery of the law was there for—to see that the severe decree was carried out. That is what we have come to in this country. That’s what the new science of Bioethics at the dawn of the 21st Century had come down to in the end: No cracked ice for Terri Schiavo. The doctors and nurses who had cared for her for years were now forbidden to give her even a single chip.

Of all that whole long, confused cruel farrago of law and politics and what all else known as the Schiavo Affair, that’s the detail that has stayed with me. Long after I’ve forgotten even what she looked like. This is the point we have reached in our advanced era, or been reduced to. I suspect most Americans didn’t want to think about it all after a while, let alone talk about it. We wanted to Move On. It’s been said before: The evils that befall the world are not nearly so often the product of bad people as they are the result of good people who remain silent when they know they should speak out. Well, tonight we’re speaking out, and we’re not going away. All you people aren’t supposed to be here, you know. “There’s nothing to see here, Move along.” Didn’t you know this issue was settled years ago, decades ago? In a definitive decision of the Supreme Court of the United States. It is Settled Law. So we are told every time we express a doubt about this pervasive culture of death. Haven’t we heard of Roe v. Wade? Don’t we know we’re fighting for a lost cause? Abortion on demand is the law of the land, and always will be. So we’re told. Just as a different generation of Americans was told that Dred Scott v. Sandford was the law of the land. The slavery question had been settled once and for all. All the states were now going to be slave states. When it came to having any rights, Negro slaves were but chattel—property like any other. Case closed. To paraphrase my favorite line from a Ring Lardner short story: Shut up, they explained.

Those old-time abolitionists and Republicans and Free-Soil Democrats and Antislavery Whigs—whose portraits now adorn the walls of this hall here at the Union League club—were a motley crew, as variegated as we are tonight. They, too, were were fighting for a supposedly hopeless cause, that of freedom. But they understood something the sophisticates of their time didn’t: No good cause is forever lost. Because no cause is forever won. That’s the nature of politics. Of ideas. Of life.

Pro-lifers? We’re supposed to have vanished years ago, you and I.We’re all just antiques, holdovers from the past, cultural artifacts, living fossils. That’s what Arnold J. Toynbee, the great pseudo-historian of the past century, called us Jews. Just the remains of an earlier day, of an archaic way of thinking that once held life sacred. Why, we’re all just a collection of dry bones. Dry bones? These bones live. Reactionaries? You bet we are. We have so many horrors to react against.

Maybe once in a generation a great issue arises—a watershed issue. One that can no longer be put off, compromised, blurred . One that will no longer be denied. But returns again and again. With the obdurate force of a moral conviction. Slavery was such an issue. Civil rights was such an issue, and it led to a Second Reconstruction. If the distinguished jurists of the U.S. Supreme Court thought they could end this discussion, they couldn’t. We have only begun to fight; to speak, to witness, and we will be heard. Will we prevail some day? I have no idea. But allow me to share a secret: It doesn’t matter. Win or lose this case or that case, this election or that election, it doesn’t matter.

Whittaker Chambers, the long hard Cold War was just beginning, was convinced he was leaving the winning side for the losing side of history. As an old party man, he knew the iron Laws of History. Resistance was useless. The Party would win in the end. Big Brother would triumph. Forever and ever. It was inevitable. But it didn’t matter. He would witness.

In 1982, another witness, Walker Percy, M.D. and writer, wrote an imperishable little essay, “A View of Abortion, With Something to Offend Eveybody,” a title that is irresistible to any editorial writer worth his salt. Dr. Percy ended his essay with a few words addressed to the opposition: “To pro-abortionists: According to the opinion polls, it looks as if you may get your way. But you’re not going to have it both ways. You’re going to be told what you’re doing.’’ And that’s what matters. To bear witness.

We’ve become very good at preaching to the converted, we pro-lifers. So good at it we may have forgotten what Martin Luther King Jr. tried to teach us—that we have a hidden ally in the hearts of our opponents. And we must never cease appealing to it. They are not our enemies, but our allies in waiting. They have consciences. They’ll come around. I did.

In another publication, the Book of Daniel, it is recorded that the Hebrew children—Meshach, Shadrach and Abednego—were called before the high king of Babylon, the great and mighty Nebudchadnezzar, and told to bow down before the sacred idol he had made—or they would be flung into the fiery furnace. And “they made him an answer: If it be so, our god whom we served is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thy hand, O King. “But if not, be it known unto thee, O King, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou has set up.”

Let us trust that the cause of life will yet prevail. BUT IF NOT . . . we will not bow down before their idol, nor sacrifice our children to it. We will witness, and not grow faint. We will be strong and grow stronger. For we will strengthen one another. As on this night.

L’chaim! To Life!

Related posts:

Should Michele Bachmann be punished for taking pro-life views from Schaeffer and Koop? (March for Life January 20, 2013)

  Dr. C. Everett Koop I was thinking about the March for Life that is coming up on Jan 20, 2013  and that is why I posted this today Secular leaps of faith 39 Comments Written by Janie B. Cheaney August 15, 2011, 2:17 PM I’m willing to cut Ryan Lizza some slack. His profile […]

Open letter to President Obama (Part 221 B) Dr. C. Everett Koop and Francis Schaeffer rightly called abortion “the watershed issue of our era”

 Dr. Koop was delayed in his confirmation by Ted Kennedy because of his film Whatever Happened to the Human Race? Francis Schaeffer February 21, 1982 (Part 1) Uploaded by DeBunker7 on Feb 21, 2008 READ THIS FIRST: In decline of all civilizations we first see a war against the freedom of ideas. Discussion is limited […]

Open letter to President Obama (Part 219)

Third-Party Payer is the Biggest Economic Problem With America’s Health Care System Published on Jul 10, 2012 by CFPEcon101 This mini-documentary from the Center for Freedom and Prosperity Foundation explains that “third-party payer” is the main problem with America’s health care system. This is why undoing Obamacare, while desirable, is just a small first step […]

The film “Whatever Happened to the Human Race?” and the pro-life movement!!! (March for Life in Little Rock Jan 20, 2013)

I was thinking about the March for Life that is coming up on Jan 20, 2013 in Little Rock and that is why I posted this today. This film really did fire up the pro-life movement worldwide. Whatever Happened to the Human Race? By Francis A. Schaeffer and C. Everett Koop, M.D. (Fleming H. Revell […]

Francis Schaeffer and C. Everette Koop on the Hippocratic oath (March for Life January 20, 2013)

Dr. C. Everett Koop was appointed to the Reagan administration but was held up in the Senate in his confirmation hearings by Ted Kennedy because of his work in pro-life causes. I was thinking about the March for Life that is coming up on Jan 20, 2013  and that is why I posted this today […]

Great pro-life article by Rev. James A. DeCamp of from Presbyterians USA Pro-Life (March for Life Jan 20, 2013)

A young Dr. C. Everett Koop pictured below.   Dr. C. Everett Koop and Dr. Francis Schaeffer both came together to write the book “Whatever Happened to the HumanRace?” and that book probably did more to fire up the pro-life movement than anything else. I was thinking about the March for Life that is coming […]

“Schaeffer Sundays” can be seen on the www.thedailyhatch.org

What Ever Happened to the Human Race?      I learned so much from Francis Schaeffer and as a result I have posted a lot of posts with his film clips and articles. Below are a few. Related posts: Francis Schaeffer: We can’t possess ultimate answers apart from the reference point of the infinite personal […]

Francis Schaeffer’s own words concerning civil disobedience

Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 3) DEATH BY SOMEONE’S CHOICE Published on Oct 6, 2012 by AdamMetropolis The 45 minute video above is from the film series created from Francis Schaeffer’s book “Whatever Happened to the Human Race?” with Dr. C. Everett Koop. This book  really helped develop my political views concerning […]

President Obama should be protecting unborn children!!!! (Part 24)

  These posts are all dealing with issues that President Obama did not help on in his first term. I am hopeful that he will continue to respond to my letters that I have written him and that he will especially reconsider his view on the following import issue. President Obama should be protecting unborn children!!!! […]

Green Bay Official Warned Boss She Wouldn’t Break Law in Election

—-

The city clerk of Green Bay, Wisconsin, grew so frustrated with a Democratic operative’s access and influence in the election process that she took a leave of absence and later resigned. Pictured: An election worker shows ballots to representatives of President Donald Trump during the recount Nov. 20 for Dane County in Madison, Wisconsin. (Photo: Andy Manis/Getty Images)

MADISON, Wis.—Kris Teske was forced to put up with a lot of outside meddling in the weeks and months leading up to November’s presidential election.

But as an election official, the frustrated city clerk of Green Bay, Wisconsin, made it clear to her superior that she would not break the law, according to new emails obtained by Wisconsin Spotlight.

“There is one more thing I want to say: If I am ever asked to do anything against the law the answer will be NO!” Teske wrote in an Aug. 26 email to Diana Ellenbecker, Green Bay’s finance director and Teske’s immediate supervisor.

As a Wisconsin Spotlight investigation has uncovered, liberal third-party groups funded by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg were heavily involved in the elections of Wisconsin’s five largest cities: Milwaukee, Madison, Green Bay, Kenosha, and Racine. Zuckerberg and his wife donated $350 million to the Center for Tech and Civic Life, a left-leaning voter rights and election group.

Want to keep up with the 24/7 news cycle? Want to know the most important stories of the day for conservatives? Need news you can trust? Subscribe to The Daily Signal’s email newsletter. Learn more >>

Green Bay received more than $1.6 million in funding from the Center for Tech and Civic Life, part of nearly $7 million in funding to the five cities. A longtime Democratic operative, Michael Spitzer-Rubenstein, the Wisconsin state lead for the National Vote at Home Institute, the Center for Tech and Civic Life’s partner organization, was embedded in Green Bay’s elections.

Teske grew so frustrated that she took a leave of absence less than two weeks before the Nov. 4 presidential election. She resigned Dec. 31.

In final official results in Wisconsin, Democrat nominee Joe Biden defeated Donald Trump by 49.6% of the vote to 48.9%, flipping a state with 10 electoral votes that Trump won in 2016.

In her Aug. 26 email, Teske raises concerns about the grant “mentors”— Spitzer-Rubenstein and crew—and “the group” working with Green Bay Mayor Eric Genrich’s office on the locations of ballot drop boxes.

Teske warned that the decisions would “be a disaster for November,” but she appears to have been overruled.

“… [A]s you can see above, things have already been decided by the ‘group,’” Teske told Ellenbecker in the email.

The city clerk said she had been cut out of core elections decisions, including working with Brown County’s Coalition of Voting Organizations, a local group that “assists voters with registration and information about upcoming elections.”

Instead, the Green Bay mayor’s chief of staff, Celestine Jeffreys, appeared to be calling the shots on the City Clerk’s Office’s partnership with the Coalition of Voting Organizations, among other facets of election administration.

“She has excluded me from that whole portion of the planning … it’s so embarrassing,” Teske wrote in the email chain.

Failing to include city clerks in such important election-related decisions violates the Wisconsin Constitution, election law experts say.

Teske again raised concerns about the “grant team” in the City Clerk’s Office. In an Oct. 20 email to her supervisor, Teske wrote that the mayor’s chief of staff was running the show by demanding that activist Spitzer-Rubenstein work in the clerk’s office. Jeffreys’ demand came as the mayor had ordered city buildings closed to the public in response to COVID-19.

Teske wrote:

Really … is Celestine [Jeffreys] running it now[?] … Please let me know. The Clerk’s Office said we didn’t want anyone from the grant team (or contracted through the grant team) to be in our office. If he [Spitzer-Rubenstein] wants to give us suggestions (observing) we are fine with that but he shouldn’t be working in the office. We need to social distance in the office I want the clerk’s staff to feel safe.

The city clerk also noted a lawsuit at the time challenging the Center for Tech and Civic Life’s grant funding to Green Bay and the four other Wisconsin cities.

“With the lawsuit I am not comfortable having him in the office. People are saying they are partisan group, we don’t think it looks good,” the clerk wrote.

Ellenbecker, Teske’s boss, attempts to placate Teske while throwing the mayor’s chief of staff a bone, writing:

I 100% agree that this person, can socially distance observe, but not in the clerk’s office. We can tactfully say until the lawsuit is done, we can’t risk any more press. He could possibly help direct traffic or sit at the end of the hall to observe. Maybe even help sort in-coming ballots with the temp help. Her statement—again—defies the city’s contention that Spitzer-Rubenstein wouldn’t have access to the ballots.

Spitzer-Rubenstein previously offered to “cure” or correct ballots, among other questionable election administration activities.

Teske told Ellenbecker that Jeffreys was “still controlling the show,” and Amaad Rivera-Wagner, the mayor’s community liaison, was making decisions that are within the domain of the clerk’s office.

“If I am to step aside there needs to be a press release because I will NOT take the blame for anything they do,” Teske wrote, two days before she took her leave of absence.

Originally published by Empower Wisconsin.

Have an opinion about this article? To sound off, please email letters@DailySignal.com and we will consider publishing your remarks in our regular “We Hear You” feature.

7 Ways the 2005 Carter-Baker Report Could Have Averted Problems With 2020 Election

Continue reading