Today's Lunch Menu

--Rice, of course, always rice, even for breakfast;
--Two kinds of kimchi, always kimchi, even for breakfast.  It's the Korean "staple" food.  It's cabbage, and they usually fix it with a spicy sauce that is so hot it would melt all of Antarctica if they dropped a pound of it on the continent.  Today they had a non-spicy kimchi (as well as the spicy).  I don't eat kimchi because I can't stand cabbage.  But they have dozens of ways to fix the stuff, all of them designed to kill the taste buds, I'm sure.  Or kill Westerners;
--"Young cabbage vegetable dish," as if one kind of cabbage wasn't enough, and I guess they couldn't find any old cabbage.  Or maybe that's what kimchi is made out of;
--"Fusilli salad," which is a twisted pasta noodle with crab meat;
--"Stir fried seaweed," which wasn't bad actually, as long as you eat it with rice to dilute the flavor;
--"Welsh onion pancakes," which, if this is the stuff they ate in the U.K., then I understand why they lost their empire;
--"Fried pork coated with millet jelly and spicy sauce."  How many of you knew you could make jelly out of millet?  For that matter, how many of you even know what millet is?
--"Soybean sprouts soup," which was pretty good.
--And they do always have a salad bar with lettuce mixed with some bitter green and white stuff, and fruit (usually canned, but sometimes fresh) and some slimy black stuff for desert that looks like something is swimming around in it.  Top it all off with "Fermented Plum Juice" (they don't know what "fermented" is, and I don't know what they mean by "fermented," so I always drink water), and you have the complete Korean meal.

Before I moved to Korea about two months ago, I bought some pants without trying them on because I thought I knew my size.  I couldn't even button them around the waist, they were so small.  Today, I wear those same pants and have to tighten my belt to keep them from falling off.  Well, at least I'm eating fairly healthy when I can get some of that Korean stuff down my gullet.

Current Events Ramblings, August 29

About 2 A.M. this morning, the thunder started crashing and the lightening started flashing and the rain came pouring down and it hasn't stopped since (currently 8:45 A.M.).  And it may last all day long, and all week, and into next week...I've never been one to get too tired of rain, especially since I've lived in a lot of places where it didn't do much of it.  But I'm not especially an outdoors person.  So far, I'm loving it.  We'll see if I get sick of it if it keeps on.


Well, I am now officially in the Adult Special Program (ASP) at Gyeonggi English Village.  I didn't think I'd get on this quickly, but my immediate supervisor, a really super guy named Adam deBear, told me Friday that he's put me there for good.   When there aren't any adults here, then I'll work with the children, which will be the case tomorrow and Tuesday.  But then, the older ones come in on Wednesday and I'll do that the rest of the week.  I had talked to Adam on more than one occasion about getting into the ASP, but I didn't hound him about it.  I don't really think this is a case of "the squeaky wheel getting the grease."  I simply told him I felt more competent and capable in that area and he worked me into it.  I had some help from another Texan, a fellow from El Paso named Andrew Hernandez--another super guy who talked to Adam about it as well--on his own, not by my request.  There are some really nice people here and I feel fairly settled.  This last week, when we had only adults, was far and away my most enjoyable and least stressful the whole time I've been here.  Things are ok, but do I miss my cows.


I want to give a huge public "thank you" to Rick Comer and the Wartburg church of Christ in Wartburg, Tennessee.  It was the church I attended when I worked in Knoxville; it's a good, sound, united congregation, though small, about 25.  Anyway, Rick and I have kept in contact ever since I left Tennessee, and he reads my blogs with regularity, and--on his own--decided to send me a "care package."  He apparently brought the idea up to the members at Wartburg and they are taking up a collection to send me some things; Rick had asked me what I particulary needed and wanted.  I'm really touched by their thoughtfulness and generosity.  It's nice to get things from home, especially things I can't get here.  My mom has sent me a box, too, and hopefully it will arrive in the near future, and Debbie sent me some books and software that I wanted but had to leave behind due to shipping costs.  Anyway, I wanted to especially mention Rick and the Wartburg church.  They are a great bunch of folks--I thought that when I was there--and they've just confirmed it with this much appreciated act of brotherly love and kindness.  That is what I miss most of all here in Korea.


"The powers that we gave the federal government [in the Constitution] are few and well-defined, and restricted mostly to external affairs. Those left with the people and the states are indefinite and numerous."--James Madison, Federalist Papers, No. 45

The quote above describes, perfectly, the mindset of the Founding Fathers of this country (well, most of them), but has been almost totally lost in America today.  There are a few people and places where you can find this sort of thinking--Walter Williams and Thomas Sowell (both black economists) as well as the Ludwig von Mises Institute ( come to mind.  The circumstance in the late 1780s was that our first Constitution, the Articles of Confederation, were a little too weak on the national level in order to keep the 13 states from completely breaking apart.  An amendment or two could have changed that, but 55 men gathered in Philadelphia over the summer of 1787, scrapped the entire Articles (which they had no authority to do), and wrote our current Constitution (sans the Bill of Rights, which were added in 1791).  Madison was the major author of the new document, and it did give the federal government more power, though not much, mainly some taxing power (tarriffs, no income tax) that the Articles had not trusted the federal government with.  Once the new Constitution was released to the public, there was a storm of protest against it by men called "Anti-Federalists," who thought the document gave the feds too much power.  Patrick Henry was especially a leader in this movement.  So Madison and Alexander Hamilton wrote The Federalist Papers, a series of 85 articles in defense of the new Constitution (they didn't convince Henry).  Federalist 45 has the quote of August 26.  Madison was trying to convince the Anti-Federalists that the powers given to the federal government were very limited, or as he put it, "few and well-defined"--in other words, Congress's powers are specifically stated in Article 1, Section 8.  There are about 17 of them.  And that's all.  According the Constitution as written by the Founders the federal government can do nothing more than those powers "delegated" to it--"delegated" by the states and the people.  Now, there was an amendment process whereby the national government could obtain more power--but they had to ask the states, to whom the rest of the powers had been delegated and who had created a national government in the first place, to give it (the feds) more authority.  Three-fourths of the states had to agree, which they've done only 27 times in our history, and some of those were a mistake (e.g., the 14th and 16th amendments, the latter being on income tax.  But the income tax, which is a Marxist spread-the-wealth tool, was popular in the early 20th century--and since--and thus the amendment was ratified).  But the bottom line is, the federal government, in the Constitution authored by the Founders, had very few, and very clearly-stated powers.  Every other power belonged to the people and the states.

Read Article 1, Section 8 sometime.  It will take you about 2 minutes.  Those are the ONLY THINGS the Founders allowed the federal government to do.  Find welfare in there for me.  Social Security.  Medicare.  Education.  Running banks and car companies.  And about 99% of everything else Congress does.  Our politicians pay absolutely no attention to the Constitution, while swearing to uphold it.  They are nothing but a pack of liars--or ignoramuses, and I don't know which is worse.  Even with the promise of Federalist 45, some states held out for a few years before ratification--Rhode Island and North Carolina did not do so until 1791.  Rhode Island's obstinance is understandable.  As the smallest state, it didn't want to give more power to a federal government that could be controlled by larger states such as New York and Virginia.  When George Washington was elected our first President, he was, at the time, President of only 11 states.  But my point in this paragraph is, our Constitution, in the hands of the current courts and national politicians, is nothing more than an ancient, and useless, document which they only pay lip service to in order to fool a populace, most of which has never even read the thing.

What happened?  How did sovereignty switch from the states--where the Founders intended it--to the national government?  Anybody who has read this blog for any length of time knows the answer to that question.  Abraham Lincoln and the War for the Southern Independence happened.  The South was trying to defend the Constitution as it was written.  Lincoln and the North wanted to--on their own authority--give the federal government more powers, powers unauthorized in the Constitution.  The South wished to leave the Union, have their own government, be left alone, and let the North have whatever government they wanted to create via Congressional and presidential mandate (not to mention the Supreme Court).  Lincoln, mainly because of money--a lot of Northerners were getting rich off Southern, slave-grown cotton--went to war the prevent the South from leaving the Union.

Barak Obama is the result of that, folks.


To demonstrate the time difference between South Korea and wherever you are, I'm, at the moment, also following the Houston Astros over the Internet as they play the New York Mets Saturday night.  The most surprising thing is that the Astros are ahead.

Current Events Ramblings, August 21

Another week of chasing yard apes around is over. This is exhausting, folks; I'm too old for this, which is why I've asked the powers at be to get me into the adult program. We do have a group of adults this coming week, and I'll be teaching some of those classes (no kids!), but I won't fully get into the adult program for probably at least a month, and maybe not till the first part of next year. I'll just grin and bear it till then; the kids ARE cute, but they can be very aggravating at times and it's their inexhaustible energy that wears me out. But really my main gripe is that it's cutting into my blog-writing time. When I get home in the evenings, I just want to vegitate, not write. Some nights I'm so tired I can't even sleep. I'll see how it goes this coming week; hopefully, I won't be as weary and can publish more posts.

I don't know if Barak Obama is a Muslim or not, but I do know he's not a Christian. Not only has he not done that which the New Testament teaches a person must do to become a Christian, but he doesn't live like one, either. Playing golf on Sundays is not a terribly representative pasttime of the true followers of Jesus. The fact that more people now think he's a Muslim than a "Christian" is also indicative of his lack of discipleship. A devout Christian in the public eye will not hide his light; no Christian should and, if by some chance Obama has obeyed the gospel plan of salvation and become a Christian (which there is absolutely no evidence of), then he's one of the poorest excuses for a Christian that I've ever known and a total embarrasment to the religion. I wouldn't want to claim him if I were a Muslim, either.

I'm still not convinced that Islam is the danger that most conservatives seem to think it is.  I'm trying to be open-minded on the matter, so I could be persuaded otherwise.  I just know there is at least two major factions within Islam--the radical, Osama Bin Laden element of Islam that indeed would like to crush every foe and infiltrate every country, killing anyone who does not become a Muslim.  But they are a very, very small minority of the Islamic people.  Most Muslims are decent folks, many of whom believe in democracy and freedom and would like to enjoy some of both.  Yes, they wish to spread their religion, but then, so do Christians.  And the very fact that so many "Christians" are concerned about the spread of Islam tells me that we are doing an awfully poor job of world evangelism.  If we have the truth, then why are we afraid of Islam?  Too, the Arab/Islamic peoples have been fighting amongst themselves for thousands of years and they will continue to do so.  Islam is no more united than "Christendom" is, and it's hard for a divided anything to be a true world threat.  But, again, I am willing to be persuaded otherwise.  I just haven't been yet.

The economy seems to be heading south again--if there ever really was economic growth, as the liberal media has been at such pains to convince us of.  It is true that pouring a trillion dollars worth of "stimulus" money into the economy will--or at least should--provide some economic growth.  The theory behind it is not totally unreasonable.  Get the economy going again, and with people working once more, they will be contributing tax dollars that can be used to pay off the stimulus debt.  Sort of like a person who borrows money, going in debt, to start a business, trusting that future profits will enable him to pay off that debt.  The problem is, it never works that way with government; or at least, I don't know of a case where it ever has.  Even if the "stimulus" succeeds in getting the economy going again, government never uses the increased revenues to pay off its debt; politicians just try to buy more votes with more pork.  Plus, Obama is stupid to raise taxes; the whole idea is that the increased revenues from the stimulus will be used to pay off the debt.  Raising taxes only discourages economic activity which kills the whole purpose of the stimulus in the first place.  Tax hikes mean people will have less money to spend on economic activity thus slowing down such activity which, again, was the main reason (ostensibly) for the "stimulus" in the first place.  The bottom line is, what benefits--if any--last year's "stimulus" package provided for the American economy are running out and the economy appears to be slowing, with most economic experts predicting a renewed recession next year.  Obama is talking about another stimulus package, i.e., more debt.  That piper will have to be paid some day, but current politicians are hoping that day will be long after they have retired.  Thus, someone else can get the blame for a disaster that was actually caused by previous Congresses and administrations.  We play a game with the kids here at English Village called "pass the bomb."  They sit in a circle with a "bomb" and pass it around until the timer goes off and the "bomb" explodes.  The person holding the "bomb" at that point is out of the game and must wait till the current game is finished.  Some of the children will hold the "bomb" for a few seconds, just to rattle the nerves of the other players, and hoping the "bomb" won't explode as they hold it (sometimes it does, which causes great merriment among the other players).  "Passing the bomb," in a nutshell, is what Congresses and Presidents have been doing for many years now--hoping it won't explode during the current terms, and often holding on to it for personal pleasure and maximum present gain.

Some day that bomb is going to explode.

Current Events Ramblings, August 18

I just got back from lunch at the cafeteria.  I don't know how many ways there are to ruin chicken, but the Koreans know them all.


Bill Gates recently gave a speech at a High School about 11 things they did not and will not learn in school. He talks about how feel-good, politically correct teachings created a generation of kids with no concept of reality and how this concept set them up for failure in the real world.

Rule 1 : Life is not fair - get used to it!

Rule 2 : The world doesn't care about your Self-esteem. The world will expect you to accomplish something BEFORE you feel good about yourself.

Rule 3 : You will NOT make $60,000 a year right out of high school. You won't be a vice-president with a car phone until you earn both.

Rule 4 : If you think your teacher is tough, wait till you get a boss.

Rule 5 : Flipping burgers is not beneath your dignity. Your Grandparents had a different word for burger flipping: they called it opportunity.

Rule 6 : If you mess up, it's not your parents' fault , so don't whine about your mistakes, learn from them.

Rule 7 : Before you were born, your parents weren't as boring as they are now. They got that way from paying your bills, cleaning your clothes and listening to you talk about how cool you thought you were. So before you save the rain forest from the parasites of your parent's generation, try delousing the closet in your own room.

Rule 8 : Your school may have done away with winners and losers, but life HAS NOT. In some schools, they have abolished failing grades and they'll give you as MANY TIMES as you want to get the right answer. This doesn't bear the slightest resemblance to ANYTHING in real life.

Rule 9 : Life is not divided into semesters. You don't get summers off and very few employers are interested in helping you FIND YOURSELF. Do that on your own time.

Rule 10 : Television is NOT real life. In real life people actually have to leave the coffee shop and go to jobs.

Rule 11 : Be nice to nerds. Chances are you'll end up working for one.
I don't care where the Muslims build their mosques.  If they bought the property, then property rights say they can do with it what they want to.  What I think is the tragedy is that this country, founded on Christian principles and the Christian religion, has gotten to the point where Muslims can even build mosques here.

Returning Soldiers

As 145 soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan walked through the double doors in Terminal D at Dallas/Fort Worth Airport on Wednesday morning for two weeks of R&R, they were greeted not only by their families, but also by some special guests.

See the pictures in the right-hand column.

Current Events Ramblings, August 14

There really hasn't been a whole lot I've wanted to comment on lately, and this week I've been absolutely exhausted pulling elementary kids off the walls and down from the chandeliers.  I've pressed my boss pretty hard about getting me into the adult teaching program, and he's told me possibly in October, almost surely by the first of next year.  I hope so; the sooner the better.

I just returned from dinner at the village cafeteria.  I passed on the octopus.

A couple of predictions:  One, the Republicans won't win either house of Congress this fall, but will make substantial gains.  I just think they are too far behind to catch up completely.  The mood of the country is anti-incumbent, not just anti-Democrat.  Throw all the bums out.  But there are enough stupid people in the country to vote most of the incumbents back into office.  It was Adolf Hitler who said, and correctly I believe, "There is no end of stupid people in the world."  If you don't like Hitler, then here's one from Albert Einstein:  "Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former."

Two, the next President will be a Republican (probably in 2012, most assuredly in 2016).  Why do I say that?  History.  Look at whom the American people have elected for the past 60 years:

1948--Democrat (Truman)
1952 and '56--Republican (Eisenhower)
1960 and '64--Democrat (Kennedy and Johnson)
1968 and '72--Republican (Nixon)
1976--Democrat (Carter)
1980, '84, '88--Republican (Reagan and Bush)
1992 and '96--Democrat (Clinton)
2000 and 2004--Republican (Bush)
2008--Democrat (Obama)

The American people are so confused that they don't know what they want.  Reference Hitler and Einstein quotes above.

I've finished the "Minor Prophets" blog and have started working on Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel, where the interested reader will find some posts.  I'm also moving along with Cowboy Story 5, though I'm not terribly happy with it at the moment.  But then, I'm not Louis L'amour so I shouldn't expect too much of myself, though I do think stories 1, 2, and 3 are pretty good and story 4, though too long, has some really good parts to it as well.  I'll keep readers informed on how I progress on this new story.  I'm tempted to have an outlaw come into town and kill about 300 elementary school kids....................

The Latest from Korea

It's very muggy here and we are in the middle of a summer "VIP" program, which doesn't mean "very important person," it means something else, but I'm not sure what.  Kim Jong-il is still blowing his nose across the border and nobody down here is paying the least bit of attention to him.

Anyway, if you want to see the latest pictures, check the right hand column.  I had these kids--the ones in the classroom pictures--in my "home room" for two weeks, though I taught other students as well.  It's hard not to become a little attached to them; they went home today.  The two white girls were from Russia.  The Village here teaches other nationalities than Koreans.  We also had a contingent of Japanese students here this week, but I didn't get to teach any of them.  As cute as these kids are, it's an energy intensive job and I'm worn out by the end of the day and almost dead by the end of the week.  I'm trying to get into the adult teaching program here, and I've had at least one "administrator" recommend me for the position, and another long-standing instructor who told me he would do so as well.  So I hope I'll be moving there in the not-too-distant future.  I think I would find that a little more intellectually challenging and stimulating, and I might not be so tired at the end of the day/week.  I want to do more blog writing, but I just haven't felt much like it.

We've got two more weeks of this "VIP" program and then we'll be back to normality.  I'll keep everyone informed.

The People Vs. Tyranny

The people of Arizona strongly supported, in their state, a law to protect their state from illegal immigration.  A judge--one person--struck it down.

The people of California (!) approved a measure banning same-sex marriage.  A judge--one person--struck it down.

In a vote yesterday, 71% of the voters of Missouri rejected a key provision in Obama's health care bill requiring that nearly all Americans purchase health insurance, a provision that the Democratic party rammed through Congress over the objection of a solid majority of the American people. 

The people vs. government.  I, certainly, am one who strongly believes that "the people" are often wrong (they elected Obama and the Democrats in the first place--but now are at least realizing their horrible mistake).  But I do believe that "the people" should have the freedom to be wrong without tyranny trying to change things in accordance with its own view of what is right and wrong.  Because "the elite" is nearly always wrong.  Their world view is in direct opposition with eternal principles and the wisdom of the ages, and such a "progressive" mentality, which rejects the values and qualities that have proven successful over countless generations--not to mention those which have been revealed to us from heaven itself--is doomed to error and failure.  That is the great catastrophe of liberalism, and why this country is headed for disaster.  "The people" have let liberals run this country for way too long.

Yet, "the people" elected those idiots.  What goes around comes around...

But they didn't elect the federal judges who reject what the people decide.  If we are going to have a "democracy," then we must not have one person overthrowing the will of the majority.  That is as far from democracy as one can get.  It is the ultimate definition of tyranny and autocratism.