OF TWO MINDS
Re: Mark Tooley’s The Zen Episcopalian:
I am an attorney working in Rochester, New York. Raised Episcopalian, I became Buddhist in 1971. I studied and practiced for 16 years in Zen Buddhism and since 1986 with Tibetan lamas. Currently I am a director at the White Lotus Society, Rochester’s Tibetan Buddhist Center.
The Dalai Lama once responded to a questioner who asked whether one could be both Buddhist and Christian by saying that from the Buddhist standpoint one could be both at a shallow level. At a deeper level the teachings on Shunyata (Emptiness) would pose a problem concerning the nature of a creator God.
There are paths leading up the mountain. One needs to decide and commit to one. Human beings cannot travel on two paths simultaneously. It seems to me that the Episcopalians are jettisoning truths that have sustained them — truths that have transformed hearts, minds and cultures over centuries for a pottage of profane beliefs. They have lost faith in their own teachings and tradition and are searching for other methods.
— Frank J. Howard
Rochester, New York
“No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other.” Matthew 6:24. Zen meditation is not incompatible with Christian or Jewish thought, as long as it is divorced from Buddhist philosophy/theology; this bifurcation seems to be absent from Forrester’s belief system. Yet Forrester’s denial of many fundamental beliefs are even more problematic. While not all Christian faith systems are dogmatic, each one has necessary and sufficient causes for being a member in good standing in the faith grouping. Forrester, who calls himself a Christian, does not believe that Jesus died for man’s sin and he is the only way to God. This has the logical equivalent of calling myself a communist but not believing in materialism or my belonging to the KKK and holding the belief that all men are created equal. Emerson wrote, “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds,” but equally true is that two beliefs are irreconcilable held within one mind will lead inevitably to insanity. While owning more than one car may be beneficial, driving both at once is impossible. At some point, a person has to make a choice.
— Ira M. Kessel
Rochester, New York
Re: Joseph Shattan’s Honor Thy Country :
This must be the first time I have ever taken issue with a derogatory reference to Jimmy Carter — I hope this is not the beginning of a horrible trend. But I think it is pretty clear by now that compared to Barack Obama, Jimmy Carter looks like a marauding Hun. I sure hope the next four years pass very quickly because at this rate, they look like they are going to be an unmitigated disaster for America and for the world. The guy who wrote that the path to hell is paved with good intentions must have had Barack Obama in mind.
— Christopher Holland
The American people need to realize one thing and realize very quickly. The Democrat Party has adopted the doctrine of “Defeatism.” This doctrine is not new to the Party. The doctrine of “Defeatism” was first developed by the antiwar movement during the Vietnam War and subsequently adopted by the Carter and Clinton administrations as a major cornerstone of their foreign policy.
The Carter Administration failed miserably in dealing with Iran, and now many years later that failure is giving the world a nuclear weapon capable terrorist state and sponsor of worldwide terrorism.
The Clinton Administration was no different than the Carter Administration in it’s ineptitude in dealing with this Nation’s enemies by refusing to admit, that the doctrine of “Defeatism” resulted in the deaths of Americans and it’s allies by not taking action against the states that sponsor terrorists.
Now President Obama is setting the stage for our and our allies’ defeat in Afghanistan. But President Obama cannot be held singularly responsible but rather the entire Democrat leadership. Senate Majority Leader once said “this war is lost.” No Mr. Reid, this war was lost a long, long time ago in the jungles of Southeast Asia in a country called South Vietnam.
— Melvin Leppla
Jacksonville, North Carolina
INDUSTRY OF LUNATICS
Re: Matthew Vadum’s Hugo’s Hollywood:
Hollywood is truly the land of fantasy. Only here can a person make $20 million for a film project and still speak proudly and loudly against capitalism. The entire film process is the ultimate in capitalist project: individual talent is paid for its originality and scarcity; rewards and punishments are directly tied to the pay offs of the projects and monetary responsibilities cannot be refused. Yet Hollywood denizens worship at the altar of socialism. They place great esteem on The Prophet Obama and American enemy President Chavez. No, this is not fantasy; it is lunacy.
— Ira M. Kessel
SWIMMING AGAINST THE CURRENCY
Re: R. Emmett Tyrrell, Jr.’s The Prophet’s Wanderlust:
I want to comment only on the “Cuba” portion of this essay. I constantly read that Cuba pose a huge economic opportunity for American business.
Question: How so?
There can be no doubt that Cuba needs everything from infrastructure to clean water; from food to underpants. Could America completely fulfill each and every one of those needs” Absolutely. But if there is a need, and the business opportunity is to fill those needs, there is yet a “third leg” to this economic milking stool: getting paid.
Cuba’s money is useless and its not the best currency to use even in Cuba. But that’s OK because Cuba doesn’t pay its just debts anyway. It’s a communist country, my friends and fearless readers, despite Hollywood’s contention that it is a paradise. Cuba has written off its huge debts to Latin America and Europe.
So the huge opportunity is that we go to Cuba, provide literally billions of dollars in construction, medicine, clothing, water purification and food. Then the American taxpayer pays for it through our government loans made to Cuba to cover the cost of all this, then Cuba defaults and the American taxpayer is forever stuck!
Sounds like just one more ill-thought-out stimulus plan by our breathtakingly incompetent Congress.
Any American, any one of you, who votes for any member of this lunatic Congress next election cycle, Republican or Democrat, deserves to have your freedoms taken away, and you hard earned wealth confiscated for ill use of this bunch of Congressional idiots.
— Jay Molyneaux
AN ENERGETIC DENUNCIATION
Re: William Tucker’s There’s Plenty of Energy at the Bottom:
Thanks very much for letting Mr. Tucker lay out the the reality we will eventually have to face in clean and simple terms. If they ever succeed in making solar cells cheap and durable, so that we can roof our houses with it, it will help ease peak consumption pressures on a hot afternoon, but that is about it. Don’t get me wrong, I will be grateful for such an advance, but the rest is really a pipe dream. And wind is a joke. Even Pickens’s plan requires the government to make him richer.
Fission is the way to the future. One little quibble. All matter whose mass is greater than just a few nuclei was created in solar processes. So fission is solar derived energy, just not from our sun. (Even Einstein can be wrong.) Fusion on the other hand mimics solar processes, using Big Bang derived elements to make energy, though lighter solar derived elements can be used too. Unfortunately, creating our own solar seems to always be just out of reach. Until then, fission is the sure way to prosperity for everyone.
And the truth is that prosperity brings a cleaner planet. It took us until after World War II to get prosperous enough that our concerns were no longer dominated by surviving, but instead turned to enjoying the world we live in. And we cleaned up really fast in the 70’s.
But the owners of the clean-up movement are crack-pots. They attack all forms of energy. They have stopped us from making dams, squelched making new nuclear plants, their tirades never stop. They have attacked coal, oil, natural gas, the list just goes on and on. They have even attacked wind. The truth is they seem to be against anything that would help mankind progress.
If they really wanted Africans to protect their environment, the would be working on ways to bust the corrupt leadership, and follow that with providing cheap energy to everyone. Then no-one would need to poach to survive. And they would protect and cherish their wildlife as the treasures they really are.
But Mr. Tucker left out some important details. Most of a fuel rod, new or used, is a safe form of uranium. Both the fuel and the waste are a small fraction of a rod. Yes, the remaining unused fuel, the safe materia, and some of the byproducts can be recycled for more fuel. But the waste isn’t all bad. We have lots of good medical uses for some of that material. And good industrial uses for some more of it. That is why the remaining material that we have not yet found a use for can be kept safe in such a small storage. France gets most of their energy from fusion, and they reprocess lots of other peoples fuel, yet all the waste is stored in one room. Think of that. No need for Yucca Mountain.
You can thank Jimmy Carter that the technologies we invented aren’t being used to help us. He did horrible things to this world. Iran, thank you Jimmy, problems in Central America and Columbia, thank you Jimmy, Afghanistan a mess, thank you Jimmy. We quit using the only sane path to the future, thank you Jimmy.
Only thing is our current president is quickly making Jimmy look like a piker. He seems intent on not only messing up the third world, but on turning us into one. We will not have a sane future with him or his buddies Nancy, Harry, Chris and Barney in charge of anything.
VOTE THEM OUT.
— Jim Bailey
NOT LETTING GO OF IT
Re: George H. Wittman’s Obama Couldn’t Be Cleared :
I have been saying this since William Ayers came to light.
I have been through this process twice in the United States Air Force. I received a TOP SECRET on a Background Investigation (BI) and later an Extended Background Investigation (EBI). These take time and even back then were quite expensive to do.
Some I have told this to dismiss this as not important. I think this is most critical.
I think the next president should as a minimum be able to meet or exceed the same high standard that I did and can still do. Senator Obama FAILS that test.
— William A. Geresy