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Proverbs 1–The Fear of the Lord

FullSizeRender.jpgDuring the summer I read through the book of Proverbs and made some notes. My plan is to share these in an on-again-off-again kind of way.


Proverbs 1 is clearly a general opening to the theme of the book. Two paths are before each of us. One path is that of wisdom. Wisdom’s path is clearly marked by the finger of God. Those who fear him are on the right path. The other path is folly. The way of folly is easy to find as well, because it is littered with the fools who have sinfully gone ahead.

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge;

fools despise wisdom and instruction. Proverbs 1:7

Two thoughts came at me quickly as I read this verse. The first is the word ‘beginning.’ I’ve never reckoned with that word before, but it indicates our spiritual connection, or awareness, of God is where our knowledge begins. We might think of that as a foundation. No lasting knowledge can be gained without the foundation of a heart and head pointed toward the Lord.

It is intriguing to me what the text doesn’t say. It doesn’t teach us the fear of the Lord is the end of all knowledge. This is because God is more than knowledge, and our journey with him is one in which we grow and change. We never stop learning. Knowledge is not finite. This is especially true in the knowledge about ourselves. The older I get, the more I learn about who I truly am. This could rightly be called self awareness–about my tastes, preferences, privileges, disadvantages, biases, and so much more. Wisdom is recognizing myself as I interact with the world around me and knowing my role in it.

The second thought that came to my mind is what fools despise. They despise instruction–because a fool is one who is arrogant. A fool rejects other people’s wisdom or insight, believing that he or she already knows all about everything. This is their pride, and they think they are already wise and need no teacher. They know more than everyone else. A fool chooses to stay foolish. It is not a congenital defect a person has no choice over, and as such it is not linked to intelligence. A fool refuses to see the world through anyone else’s eyes, but steadfastly insists they and they alone are all that matter.

The wise says, “Tell me what you think. I want to hear what you’re view is.”

The fool says, “Shut up and listen to me and I’ll tell you how it is.”

What fools despise is what the wise crave–to be taught and learn things from other people.

“O Lord, mold me into a person who craves wisdom, and rejects folly.”

Some Analysis On What Happened

Warning: What follows is snarky political commentary. Read at your own risk.

Waiver: I am not partisan. I am too concerned about the unborn to be a Democrat. I am too much in favor of immigration and open borders to be a Republican. I am too cynical of the human condition to be a Libertarian. I trust no politician.

Disclosure: I will not, at any point in the future, buy or read Hillary Clinton’s book. Its just not something I’m inclined to do.

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What Happened is the title of her book. It is not lost on me that her book title doesn’t have a question mark. She is not asking, she is telling. And that is perhaps as much insight as anyone needs into why she lost in the first place. Nevertheless, I take it as a question. What follows are my answers to her not-so-rhetorical question.


  1. Hillary lost. That is what happened. She was a bad candidate. I am not a Trumper, and that has been made manifest on the pages of this blog before, but he out campaigned her. It has been said before, and should be said again– There is nothing anyone else did that kept her from going to Wisconsin. It could be argued that Trump didn’t win; Clinton lost.
  2. The emails are a fact of her own making. She tries hard to blame Jim Comey for her defeat as if he invented the problem. The problem was one she made. If one thinks on it from a certain perspective, Comey can become a sympathetic character who was between a rock and a hard place as it concerned the Clinton emails.
  3. Bernie Sanders did her a favor. If Sanders hadn’t been such a magnetic candidate, even fewer people would have cared about the election from the Democratic end. The truth is, the Dems made a terrible mistake in fronting HRC to begin with. Elizabeth Warren would have been the preferred candidate, IMHO to either Bernie or HRC. The only positive thing for the Dems is that the table is set for a strong Warren run in 2020. I, for one, think that Warren V. Trump would be compelling to watch. I’m already making popcorn and Kool-Aid. I mean, can you imagine the fiery Elizabeth Warren’s righteous indignation if Trump would have stalked her in a a debate the way he did HRC? She would have lit him up right then and there.
  4. America is sick of the Clintons. In many ways, she lost for the same reason Jeb Bush could never get traction in the GOP primaries. Most people are ready to move on. I am one of them.
  5. Benghazi mattered. Yeah, that was a big deal to a lot of people. I understand diplomacy means risks, but the way she and President Obama tried to sell that debacle to the American public was a disgrace and many Americans remembered that at the voting booth.
  6. If she couldn’t handle Trump’s tactics in the campaign, how on earth did she expect to handle Russia, China, and North Korea? I think Putin might have overplayed his hands when he worked so hard at undermining the Clinton campaign, because he would have run roughshod over her presidency.
  7. Whining is not pleasant. As a leader, you have to own your problems, and sometimes even own the problems of others. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve taken the blame for something I had nothing to do with, but because I’m the leader it is my responsibility. Blaming others and whining is not productive. Someone should tell her this.
  8. There is a gender problem in our country, and some people didn’t vote for her because she was a woman.  That is true. It is stupid and sad, but true. However, that is not why she lost. There are some people that didn’t vote for Trump just because he was a man, or who voted for Obama because he was black or didn’t vote for him because he was black or didn’t vote for Bush because he was from Texas or because he was from Texas. A strong candidate worthy of being the President of the United States overcomes this. How many people didn’t vote for Kennedy because he was Catholic? or Romney because he was Mormon? I don’t think I ever heard Mitt Romney complain about Mormon bias.

I do not wish HRC any ill will. I wish her the best. I want her to ride off into the sunset with Bill and spend time being a grandmother, doing philanthropy, advocating for women’s issues, and perhaps giving political commentary whenever she wants. But I don’t ever want to see her name on ballot again. Her time is up.

Hey Apple–I Have Questions

I’m a pretty loyal consumer of Apple products. I get Apple. I understand the equipment. Perhaps it is because the first computers I remember are those old Macintoshes we had in high school. I can work a Windows machine fairly well, but I prefer Macintosh and Apple iPhones. The one exception is iTunes. I have invested a lot of money in iTunes music, and now I find that I can barely run the program and usually opt for Spotify or Amazon Music–which is what I’m listening to right now–some Allman Brothers on this Tuesday evening. apple_iphone_2017_20170912_11670.0

But I digress.

Today was the big reveal in Cupertino of the new iPhone X on the ten year anniversary of the first iPhone. I didn’t watch the event live. I had work to do. But I have been following the news release, and I have some questions.


1. What did nine do wrong? In fact, I’ll throw this out to Windows too. I was running a Dell last year and remember when the OS went from 8 to 10, and skipped nine altogether. Now iPhone has done the same thing. If I understand it right, they are releasing an iPhone 8 which is really just an updated 7, but there is no nine. Just like there was no Windows 9. The conspiracy theorists wants to know why? Is it a symbol? Does it have a secret only the Illuminati cipher? Is nine just too Trinitarian? Is nine not cool enough of a digit? Is it that nine is gone, because seven ate (eight?) nine?

2. Are you really doing something as lame as renaming the Apple Store “Town Squares” ? The word on the street is they are renaming the Apple Store to “Town Squares” Because they want them to be ‘meeting places’ for people. Man, that sounds terribly presumptuous and confusing. I think this will bomb. No one will call it Town Square. It will always be the Apple Store, just like no one calls it the Genius Bar, no matter how hard you try.

3. Can you give me a good reason to buy an Apple Watch? I wanted one, I really did. I wanted one when I thought it would replace my iPhone. I don’t want one if it has to be in close proximity to my iPhone to have full functionality. In other words, I want an Apple Watch that actually works independent, that is not just a bluetooth display of the iPhone.

4. Is face recognition a good idea? I mean, I watched the movie “The Circle” and it kinda of scared me because in my lifetime I’ve already observed the erosion of individual liberty and freedom for the sake of comfort as companies gather more and more analytics about us. Now you want my face? I mean, this sounds like a very bad idea. Can you give me some reassurances here?

5. If you get rid of the “Home” button on the iPhone, how will E.T. know where to go? How will he phone home? Okay, that was a bad joke, but I couldn’t resist. On a positive note, I like the look of the new iPhone X because it looks like the iPhone 3, which to me was the most beautiful of all the iPhones. It was smaller, true, but it fit in the pocket, and the hand, and looked amazing. I’m not a big fan of the square, and this new model looks like a throw back to that earlier design, and that is something I applaud.

6. Will “Augmented Reality” help me find better words for the letter V in Words With Friends? I’m asking for a friend.

7. Why does your promo shot of the iPhone X look so much like the poster for Star Trek the Motion Picture?

8. Can I trade in the drawer filled with the iPod, iPod shuffle, iPod mini, iPhone, iPhone 3, 4, 5, 5S, 6, iPad, iPad 2, and iPad Nano for a bit of a discount on the $999 price tag of one of your sleek new phones? Maybe a kidney? A toe, I mean I’ve got ten toes and I probably only need like seven?

These are some of the questions I have about the new iPhone. I’m sure more will arise in the coming days.

Fire and Fury

I’m not certain I should write this blog post, because I am still processing in my mind what I am hearing our President say. And yes, whether you like him or not, he is our duly elected president. What I think I heard him say was that if North Korea threatened the United States they would be met with, “Fire and fury such as the world has never seen.” Then, I heard him say today that perhaps that wasn’t a tough enough statement.

I’m just working to put my mind around what that might mean. It sounds like he threatened thermonuclear war. That is what it sounded like–our President threatened another country with nuclear weapons. We, The United States, is engaging in brinkmanship of the ultimate kind. He threatened to drop a nuclear bomb on civilians oppressed under a brutal military dictatorship. He threatened to begin what would no doubt be a chain reaction of bombs across the Korean Peninsula, Asia, and no doubt the world. Our President threatened to intentionally deploy the weapons of a kind of armageddon. He used the specter of nuclear holocaust the way a playground bully would use a punch in the nose, or a petty businessman might use a lawsuit. He opened the vault of the past, where we’ve kept the fear of nuclear winter and the Doomsday Clock, and made us smell the rotting mold of genocide. He, that is we, because he is our president and he speaks for us, moved us in the most dangerous direction possible, on purpose.