Jesus - Sermon on the Mount

Where was Ayn Rand when Jesus needed her philosophical guidance?

I find the Gospel of Matthew contains some of the core principles of the teachings of Jesus. Below are a few verses I find helpful in guiding my path through life and helping me view the things that go on in the world around me. Please don't look to me for religious guidance. I'm only human and, like the rest of you, I just working to get through life the best I can. I'm not bible scholar and don't pretent to be...

What can I say...the beatitudes:

And seeing the multitudes, He went up on a mountain, and when He was seated, His disciples came to Him. Then He opened His mouth and taught them, saying:

Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be filled.
Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.
Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

You can't take it with you...

Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

Who you going to serve...

No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon.

Who am I to judge...

Judge not, that you be not judged. for with what judgment you judge, you will be judged; and with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you. And why do you look at the speck in your brother's eye, but do not consider the plank in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, let me remove the speck from your eye'; and look, a plank is in your own eye? Hypocrite! First remove the plank from your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother's eye. Do not give what is holy to the dogs; nor cast your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you in pieces.


The Art of Politics: Thomas Hart Benton

The Strike (1933)

Thomas Hart Benton was born on April 15, 1889 in Neosho, Missouri. He spent most of his childhood in boarding schools and in Washington, D.C. and landed his first job as a cartoonist for the Joplin American in Missouri. Benton studied at the Art Institute of Chicago, resided briefly in Paris and New York City, then settled in Kansas City, working as an instructor of drawing/painting at the Kansas City Art Institute. His most famous pupil was the Abstract Expressionist Jackson Pollock; his well known Nebraska students at the Institute were Aaron Pyle and Bill Hammond.
Benton was part of the Regionalist movement and is well known for his mural paintings that depict commmon everyday scenes of Midwestern life. The figures in his works often appear cartoon-like through the way he distorts the bone and muscular structure of their faces. His most famous murals are located in the Missouri State Capitol in Jefferson City and in the Truman Library in Independence. Benton died January 19, 1975 in his studio.



Progressive Heroes: Fighting Bob La Follette

You've heard the term "progressive" used in combination with politics, but maybe you don't know how deeply that progressive roots are in Wisconsin and national politics. A major force behind getting the term "progressive" tattooed onto the lips of today's political rhetoric service was Wisconsin native Robert La Follotte. The conservative, wing-right echo chamber is busy trying to make words like "progressive" and "liberal" dirty, shameful words.

If you are looking to improve the future, you better understand the past and know what got us this far. Take a few minutes to learn more about Fighting Bob! You will learn he was part of a determined group of individuals who fought against the interest of the robber barons to help the masses improve their lives and livelihood. What the Progressives fought for 100 years ago is what the neo-cons and bloggers like our neighbors at www.ontheborderline.net are fighting to undone today. The OTBL'ers dream of returning to a fantasy world of 100 years ago that never existed.

Robert Marion LaFollette, (1855-1925), American political leader. A founder of the Progressive Movement, he was a spearhead for political reform in Wisconsin and the nation for 25 years. Unwilling to compromise on principle, "Fighting Bob" LaFollette earned the deep admiration of his supporters and the hatred of many foes.

LaFollette was born in Primrose, Wis., on June 14, 1855. A farmer's son, he graduated from the University of Wisconsin in 1879 and practiced law in Madison. In 1880 he defied a local political leader to win the office of district attorney. He then served (1885-1891) as a Republican in the US House of Representatives.

Wisconsin Governor: 1900-1906
Wisconsin's U.S. Senator: 1906-1925
Progressive Party Presidential Candidate: 1924

For more detail on La Follotte's life and legacy, click here or
click here.

Books to checkout:

LaFollette, Robert M., LaFollette's Autobiography (Univ. of Wis. Press 1960)
Thelen, David P., Robert M. LaFollette and the Insurgent Spirit (Univ. of Wis. Press 1986)
Young, Donald, ed., Adventure in Politics (Holt 1970)

US Health Care: Twice The Cost; Same Results

Let's the US spends twice as much on health care and gets the same results as other countries with national health care coverage...

Need a hip replacement?

The "average" US cost of a hip replacemtn is $34,454. That's twice what it costs in Germany, three times what it costs in France, and six times what it costs in Switzerland. WTF?

This goes a long way toward explaining why hip replacements are so popular in the United States: they're a huge profit center for doctors and hospitals.

Read IFHP Survey of Medical Costs By Unit...


It Ain't 'Bout Da Facts Jack

"Republicans, who are masters of deceptive marketing, seized on Obama's most appealing qualities and turned them upside down. Their propaganda cast him not as soft but as a power-mad (black) leftist, destroying democracy with socialist schemes. The portrait was so ludicrous and mendacious, the president's party hardly bothered to respond. Egged on by the Republican Party and Fox News, right-wing frothers conjured sicko fantasies and extreme accusations: the president is not only a black man (bad enough for the party of the white South); he is not even American. The vindictive GOP strategy is racial McCarthyism, demonizing this honorable man as an alien threat, just as cold war Republicans depicted left-liberal Democrats as commie sympathizers."

William Grieder