Saturday, February 18, 2012
What a crazy presidential race this is turning out to be. I thought Mitt Romney had the nomination pretty much wrapped up. But along comes Rick Santorum to spoil everything.
According to the polls, it looks like Santorum will win in Ohio, maybe win in Michigan, and lose in Arizona this upcoming election, Tuesday, February 28th.
A win for Santorum in Michigan would be especially devastating for Romney. That's Romney's home turf.
But we’ve seen the anti-Romney candidates come and go. Hopefully now Santorum will go.
Romney needs to spend a whole bunch of money on advertisements and stuff. That's usually how he wins, and there's nothing wrong with that. Plus he's an awesome candidate.
Oh, did you hear that Gingrich got another 10 million bucks from his gambling buddies? Looks like his campaign will survive a little longer. I think that will end up helping Romney, because it will split the angry protest vote between Santorum and Gingrich.
I like Rick Santorum, but I like Mitt Romney better.
You know why? Because Romney has a lifetime of experience as a businessman, and Santorum is a life-long politician.
Also, Santorum is just not as electable as Mitt Romney is. Santorum is too outspokenly socially conservative. The Republicans are going to win by talking about the economy, not contraception. Also, Santorum's proposal to cut taxes on the manufacturing industry to 0 % just isn't doable.
Look, I wish Ted Nugent could be our President. But we live in a country that would never elect Ted Nugent. He's too conservative. He lacks broad-based appeal. We have to support the more electable guy. We have to support Romney rather than Santorum, because there's too much at stake in this election. We can't lose. If Obama gets re-elected, America's great days are probably over.
And I'm not necessarily saying that Santorum is more conservative than Romney. In some areas, such as illegal immigration, Romney is probably more conservative.
Vote for Mitt Romney.
There are plenty pieces of evidence that suggest that the Book of Mormon is an authentic record, or at least an impressive work of literature. I'll write about one today.
Alma Chapter 36 is one giant chiasmus.
What's a chiasmus? It's a form of ancient poetry that is often found in the Bible. I'll write a chiasmus now.
The weather is staggering.
It makes me think of times past.
Human brains really are extraordinary.
I review my strong memories.
and the weather is astounding.
The poetic features of this poem isn't rhyme or onomatopoeia or anything, it's the structure. The first line is about the weather. The second line is about remembering. The third line is the peak of the poem. Then the poem starts heading back to where it began. The fourth line is again about remembering, and the final line is about the weather.
To put it more succinctly, the poem follows this pattern:
One of the great things about this poem is that, unlike other poetic devices such as rhyme, it survives the translation process. Well, most of the time it survives the translation process.
OK, now that we understand the structure of a chiasmus, let's look at some real live examples from the Bible, not just silly ones that I make up.
Copied and pasted from Wikipedia:
The ancient Hebrew and Greek texts of the Old and New Testaments are rich in chiasmus. Many of these have become lost in translation, but hundreds of others remain. The following examples are indented to show the parallel structure of the text.
A "But many that are first
B shall be last;
B1 and the last
A1 shall be first." Jesus (Bible: Matthew 19:30.)
A "Do not give what is holy to dogs,
B and do not throw your pearls before swine,
B1 lest they (the pigs) trample them under their feet,
A1 and (the dogs) turn and tear you to pieces." Jesus (Bible: Matthew 7:6.)
A "Make the heart of this people fat,
B and make their ears heavy,
C and shut their eyes;
C1 lest they see with their eyes,
B1 and hear with their ears,
A1 and understand with their heart, and convert [return], and be healed." (Bible: Isaiah 6:10)
A "Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord,
B to the house of the God of Jacob
C …and we will walk in his paths…
D And he shall judge among the nations…
E they shall beat their swords into plowshares,
E1 and their spears into pruninghooks:
D1 nation shall not lift up sword against nation…
B1 O house of Jacob,
A1 come ye,
C1 and let us walk in the light of the Lord" (Bible: Isaiah 2:3-5)
(Note: in this example, C1 does not fall where it is expected to fall; it follows A1.)
B Jesus Christ
C raised from the dead
D descended from David. This is my gospel
E for which I am suffering
F even to the point of being chained like a criminal
F1 But God's word is not chained
E1 Therefore I endure everything
D1 for the sake of the elect, that they too
C1 may obtain the salvation that is in
B1 Christ Jesus
A1 with eternal glory.
(Bible: 2 Timothy 2:8-10)
And then there’s a bigger chiasmus found in the Flood Story, in Genesis. That one is written about on this website.
Well, it turns out that the Book of Mormon, like the Bible, is chock-full of chiasmuses! And the biggest one is in Alma chapter 36. That one is written about in detail here.
What are the chances that this giant, elegant chiasmus happened by chance? Very slim. I would think that for this uncanny word arrangement to occur, the author had to do it intentionally. I don't think a giant chiasmus like Alma 36 could come out by happenstance.
So then, doubters of the Book of Mormon might say that Joseph Smith intentionally wrote Alma 36 that way. Doubters would also say that Joseph Smith intentionally put in all those other chiasmuses, too. But if he did, why did he never bring it up? Why did he never present it as evidence of his prophetic calling? Why did nobody in the church discover it until recently?
Alma 36 doesn't exactly prove the Book of Mormon true, but it pretty much proves the Book of Mormon true. That's what I think.
P.S. I'm reminded yet again that the only real way to gain a testimony of the Book of Mormon is reading it, searching it, pondering it, and praying about it as Moroni asks readers to do in Moroni 10: 3 - 5.
Wednesday, February 8, 2012
but, I'm sorry, hello, I see you wheel your trash to the curb
on Thursday evenings and it's been, what, five years now since
you moved in? Hello. You drive out of your
driveway on weekday mornings, to go to work, I assume,
and driveways aren't that interesting anyway. Ha!
But I do notice things about you. Forgive my intrusiveness-
No, it's not "intrusiveness." I misspoke!
I assure you, um, Neighbor, it is nothing more
than an old-fashioned neighborly inquisitiveness
that brings me to you this lovely Saturday afternoon.
Look! An excellent thing about us, neighbors, is,
we honor private property rights, don't we?
Notice the way I stand on the asphalt.
Notice my feet well planted on public property.
Another thing my neighborly, non-threatening inquisition
has brought to my attention:
In five years I've never seen anyone sit
on the quaint-looking bench in your front yard.
I know what you're trying to say.
And I want to point out something
with which you're obviously familiar,
supposing, of course, you have at least once,
in the five years and two months and three weeks
and fifteen days we've lived apart on this street,
cast your eyes toward my house.
I do not have a bench in my yard.
If you had ever been to my doorway, you would also
be familiar with the fact that
I have a faded, illegible welcome mat.
What's your name? Goodbye. Where are you from?
Good. What are your hobbies?
Neat. I don't like those things,
but I like that you like those things.
Goodbye. I have a beard. Goodbye.
Saturday, February 4, 2012
Hooray! Mitt Romney wins again! Mitt Romney won by a lot last Tuesday in Florida, and he won by a whole lot tonight in Nevada. Way to go, Mitt Romney! He's on the path to the Republican nomination! I really think that the American people are through with Gingrich, and I think the only guy, besides Romney, that has a chance is Rick Santorum. But Santorum has a lot of catching up to do. He's got to raise a bunch of money if he wants to compete with Romney's well-oiled and well-funded campaign.
Oh, and Donald Trump recently endorsed Mitt Romney. Did you hear that? That endorsement probably convinced a few Gingrich supporters to reconsider voting for Mitt. See, Gingrich and Trump are both populist politician types. Gingrich said he would be eager to debate the others with Trump as the moderator, before Trump canceled the debate, because most of the candidates declined Trump's invitation. It definitely looked like Gingrich was wanting to please Trump. Also, Gingrich and Trump have been married a few times, and are now married to much, much younger women. So, when I heard that Trump was going to endorse someone, I thought it was going to be Newt. Well, imagine my pleasant surprise when I learned that Trump endorsed Romney!
Now, the Trump endorsement is great for the primary, but for the general election, um..., it might not be great. I don't know.
Have you heard that Mitt Romney helped saved the life of a teenage girl? I guess his co-worker's teenage daughter went to a rave and did ecstasy and went missing for a few days in New York City. Mitt Romney and a lot of his employees at Bain stopped business so they could personally search for this girl. And they found her!
Wow. Doesn't that tell you what kind of guy he is? Obama will try to characterize Romney as an unfeeling member of the elite 1 %, a soulless money-hungry Wall Street tycoon who wishes nothing more than to squeeze a few more pennies out of the poor. Well, I got news for you, Mr. Obama. Mitt Romney has a soul. And he's a really nice guy. He cares about people. Romney's in the Presidential race for the right reasons.
Goodnight, dear readers.