Who I Am

My name is Daniel. I’m a part time political blogger. Once you get in, it is very hard to leave. Politics is in my blood, and I can’t get away. So I make the most of it by blogging. I’m a moderate Democrat who is very strongly against the war in Iraq and against the use of torture. As to the rest, I’m quite moderate in my views. And I hope that we get our country back from the brink of extreme politics we’ve seen these past seven years.

As I have more time and motivation, I will add to this page my beliefs on various topics, including my political leanings.


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  1. I think the same way. Apparently it’s easier to kill each other instead of talking and solve problems. It makes me think of that famous talk by President Ezra Taft Benson in 1989 “Beware of Pride”…

  2. Hi Miguel,

    Thanks for stopping by the blog. Yes, President Benson’s Pride talk is very relevant. There is much we can do for peace in the world if we let go of our pride.

  3. An LDS missionary(?) named Elder Platt came by my house every week for a year and we talked about all world of things. Wonderful fellow, I hope he has a great life. I’m a happy Episcopalian, but he certainly left me with a fine impression of the LDS.

    Salutations and God Bless,

  4. God bless you too Doug, and thank you for stopping by and commenting on my blog.

  5. Well you know Jesus Christ said that he came to bring division between His people and the world. So there will never be world peace. Only in Heaven.

  6. Marley,

    Thanks for commenting. While the Savior said he did not come to bring peace, but division, he did not say that his followers should bring division to the world, but in fact commanded his followers to forgive their enemies, love their enemies, do good to them that despise them, show love and kindness to those who persecute them. These are not the actions of divisive people, or of people who do not seek world peace.

  7. All I can say is, Amen! I look forward to perusing more of your blog. Keep up the good work.

  8. Julie,

    Thank you and welcome to my blog. I hope you comment frequently.

  9. Daniel:

    Nice Blog. Missionaries from LDS are welcome at my house anytime, as is anyone believing that we are here to “build the kingdom of God”. It too saddens me to once again have leaders masquerading as Christians (You may or may not be aware that Hitler did that as well).

    What I like about most about LDS is they not only “talk the talk” but “walk the walk”. FWIW, I accept Jesus Christ as “a” way to God, but not as the “only” way. I pretty much read only the NT, and then mostly only the four gospels. And then, it seems to me even really understanding the Sermon on the Mount is enough. To me Christ’s message is KISS- keep it simple stupid. The Golden Rule, or doing everything out of love and truth suffices.

    Thanks again for your blog and god bless.

  10. Erich,

    You’re welcome. And thank you for your comments. It is amazing how the small and simple things can do so many powerful and great things. So many of us forget those small and simple things sometimes.

  11. I believe Jesus Christ was a true prophet, and most of what he had to say is contained in the Sermon on the Mount.

    I believe there is an ultimate creator, preserver, and destroyer of the universe, a God within, a quiet still voice that is always there, that can be heard if one is still, disciplined, and striving to hear it.

    You may or may not be familiar with Buddhist thought. I find the precepts helpful:

    The Three Pure precepts:

    1. Cease from evil
    2. Do only good
    3.Do good for others

    The Ten Great Precepts are:

    1. Do not kill
    2. Do not steal
    3. Do not covet
    4. Do not say that which is not true
    5. Do not sell the wine of delusion
    6. Do not speak against others
    7. Do not be proud of yourself and devalue others
    8. Do not be mean in giving either Dharma or wealth
    9. Do not be angry
    10. Do not defame the three treasures.

  12. I think religion is sad and dangerous, but in spite of that you strike me as a fantastic person from your writing. Visit my blog antime:)

  13. Ian,

    Well thank you for the compliment. I hope I can bring about a better light on religion than you’ve seen in the past. 🙂

  14. Great blog and content. I love the look and feel. Do you mind sharing what WP theme you used?

  15. Kate,

    Thanks. I use the MistyLook theme. I’ve placed my own picture in the header. I like this theme a lot, very simple, very refined and very easy to use.

  16. As a former missionary, and as an european, I always thought I would never be able to agree with an american LDS, until I read your blog. Keep showing the world that we do think for ourselves, and that war is definitely not a part of our doctrine!

  17. Daniel Martins,

    Thank you for your comment. Yes, there are Mormons in America who are not brainwashed by the Republican party. 🙂

  18. You seem all concerned about how GOOD you are. Typical liberal, all concerned with warm and fuzzy feelings — like the liberals who buy the electrical car which pumps more coal into the air to produce the electricity. The # 1 stated reason they bought the electrical car is that they like what it says about them. Liberals are all concerned with fuzzy thoughts. …btw, you’re all over Glenn Beck for satirically talking about killing Michael Moore. How do you feel about the Hollywood types, the musical types, the writers and the people who produce off-Broadway plays advocating for Bush’s assassination. No doubt, they’re impassioned citizens exercising their free speech and artistic voice.

  19. Tom,

    We all should be concerned about how good we are. We are Americans. The rest of the world indeed looks to us for the righteous example. Note how Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe is using our surveillance laws to justify his own intrusion on the privacy of his citizens.

    As to Glenn Beck and Hollywood, I’ve always been struck by conservatives’ justifications for bad actions or words. In the eyes of conservatives, as long as the enemy does it, so can we. The “Clinton did it too” excuse is the most glaring. Apparently because Clinton did it, it somehow justifies Bush doing it (whatever it happens to be). Interesting, for an ideology that prizes itself on being on a different level than that of liberals.

  20. I don’t always get around to reading other blogs and I should. I am a Christian, not Mormon. I applaud people who stand up for what they believe in. I’m in USA, have several military personnel serving including my son right now. But I know that God is a good God. I know that in Christ, all things will work together. I believe that peace is not going to be achieved until the Prince of Peace returns. It just isn’t going to happen by man. I’m not going to say which country my son is serving in but I’m going to read some of your other links because I see it listed here.

    God bless.

  21. Ha, nice try avoiding the point Tom brought up. He is simply pointing out that you cry EVIL when any conservative says something extreme, but any extreme liberal statement is left by the roadside as freedom of speech. Nobody is justifying evil with evil. That on your part is putting the worst construction on this. Which is hardly the moral “Good” American you profess to be. Why don’t you humble yourself Daniel? Be the righteous example for me and Tom and be humble for once. Instead of saying, ya know Tom you’re right, I do have a slight double standard when I look at conservatives vs liberals. But no, nothing Daniel does can be wrong, for he is that righteous example for us all… except for that humility thing… Instead Daniel launches into a tirade about how Republicans are an idealogy that believe they are morally above the Democrats. But Daniel, you are the “Good” American. What are good people supposed to do? Point the finger, or examine themselves? You see, Tom is explaining to you that you are not doing the “Good” thing. Instead of examining yourself and your party, you are constantly pointing the finger. Which is exactly the opposite of good conduct, and you actually want people to model us as the “righteous” example!

  22. Templar,

    I’m starting to feel like you have never heard of the term “red herring.”

  23. Daniel,
    You are an LDS Democrat; isn’t that an oximoron? Also, the tenants of the LDS Mormon Church are not scriptural and you can’t work your way into heaven.
    Love your enemies, yes, but don’t turn a blind eye to evil. The devil is alive and well on earth and he comes to destroy, etc., etc, and uses war to enhance this. There is no peace on earth until Jesus comes back again, and ‘works’ won’t get you there.
    Oh yes, you need to brush up on your history of the Arab/Muslim world. Doesn’t it teach the destruction of all non-muslim/Arabs.?

  24. kathleenvibbert said: “I believe that peace is not going to be achieved until the Prince of Peace returns.”

    The problem is, that same Prince of Peace told us exactly how to achieve it, and we have steadfastly refused to listen.

    Peace is not achieved by buying up armies and navies, and attempting to rule the earth with blood and horror.

    That’s someone else’s plan.

  25. Barry,

    You are an LDS Democrat; isn’t that an oximoron?

    No, it is not an oxymoron.

    Love your enemies, yes, but don’t turn a blind eye to evil.

    Since when does our doctrine state that we should turn a blind eye to evil?

    The devil is alive and well on earth and he comes to destroy, etc., etc, and uses war to enhance this.

    Hmmm, what do you call those who employ the devil’s tools?

    There is no peace on earth until Jesus comes back again, and ‘works’ won’t get you there.

    Actually there is, but only for those who seek peace. Those who seek war, well, you said yourself, the devil uses war…put two and two together dude.

    Doesn’t it teach the destruction of all non-muslim/Arabs.?

    Nope, but thanks for playing.

  26. “Hmmm, what do you call those who employ the devil’s tools?”

    Ummm… Satanic?

  27. I guess I should introduce myself. Hi…I’m Rob. I got my BA/MA in public policy from BYU. I was political science student of the year at BYU back in 1999, with PSA Paper of the Year that same year. At BYU, I used to always get the “how can you be a good Mormon and a good democrat line?” My answer was usually, “I’m not really a democrat…it’s just that there is no functioning socialist party anymore.” I think it is dangerous to have the Church too closely associated with any party or platform other than the Gospel of Jesus Christ. My blog is: http://jenirob.blogspot.com. After getting fed up working for both Republican and Democratic administrations in Virginia, I became a financial advisor and moved to Arizona, where the Republicans are rabbid.

  28. Hey Rob,

    I was at BYU in PoliSci also in 1999. I wonder if we ever had a class together.

  29. I was a TA for Dr Galbraith, an RA for Dr Wilson.

    Here are some other Poli Sci professors I had fantastic experiences with in a rough order of personal influence:

    Dr LaMond Tullis
    Dr Don Sorensen
    Dr Gary Bryner
    Dr Byron Daynes
    Dr Jay Goodliffe
    Dr Richard Davis
    Dr Kelly Patterson
    Dr Ralph Hancock

  30. I just found your blog .

    I am going to post my opinion
    of the Iraq war.

    Great blog keep up the good work.

  31. I just picked you up on Conner’s blog, having just visited there for first time, where the thread concerned the speeches by Pres. Hinkley. Have to confess, I think you explicated his position on Iraq war accurately. I don’t much like it, but have to live with the thought that his talks did support our intrusion into these countries and the ‘War on Terror’.

    I’m a ‘Conservative/Consitutionalist’, but belong to the wing (it does exist) that has deplored the Middle Eastern wars from the beginning, and have even handed out flyers at the Republican Convention containing BofM passages showing the Lord deplores pre-emptive wars in other lands.

    In my view, the Democrat/Republican thing is something of a false dichotomy, with Democrats’ emphasizing ‘compassion’, etc., and Republicans emphasizing (or should be) individual liberty and responsibility. People should emphasize both. Christians/LDS Christians should emphasize both

    Unfortunately, the powers-that-be exploit this and many other ‘dichotomies’ for there own purpose through media and other pervasive control.

    Interesting blog, good defense of your positions on Conner.

  32. Hey Brad,

    Thanks for stopping by and for actually reading my huge long comment over on Connor’s blog. I’m glad you agree with it. I’m highly disappointed in numerous of Connor’s readers who wish to see whatever they want in President Hinckley’s talk. Cognitive Dissonance at its best.

  33. It is absolutely hysterical reading your ignorant words, actually comical!!My favorite is the part about the peace- oh if the world had only read your words years ago, and how if you seek peace– pow, it will happen! So simple- War? what was anyone who lead any war thinking? Stupids, just seek it and there will be WORLD PEACE!! Tell that to the children who lost there parent(s) on 9/11.

  34. Uh, oh, Dan. I just saw your contributions on Conners site regarding 9/11. Heaven help me from wading into this issue with someone with your mind set. Life is really tooooo short, and I’ve already wasted months doing this type of thing with others.

    I’ll just say that your view of science appears to be considerably different than mine. Upon hearing Dr. Jones for 3 1/2 hours in October 2005, I thought he did a good job in presenting the improbability of the airplane/fire/damage hypothesis being responsible for the WTC building collapses. He also showed that some form of explosive solves all the inherent problems of that hypothesis.

    The presence of molten metal/high temperatures in the rubble is very well attested, and includes data collected by the USGS, which I used to work for. Dr. Jones and others is also finding myriad metallic spherules in WTC dust samples, exhibiting EDS/XRF signatures of spent thermite residues. He has also found small chips in this material that may be actual thermite remants. This, including the molten metal, is physical data that can’t be ignored.

    Incidentally, your assessment of Dr. Jones is mainly ad hominem and your critique of his papers is extremely weak.

    Having posted a positive comment about one of your offerings, I don’t want potential visitors to your web site to think I agree with your ideas on what caused the WTC towers to come down. Please don’t pick up the cudgel. We just have a difference of opinion on this issue. Thanks.

  35. Brad,

    I stand behind my criticism of Dr. Jones. I feel he is doing a disservice to the truth.

    I have watched the videos of the collapses of the towers and for the life of me, they collapsed on their own without the aid of demolitions. Take a look at this video, as one example. Look at it very carefully at the 14th second. This guy has his camera trained on the burning section of the South Tower where you see very clearly a collapse. The strength merely went out right there. Look at it carefully. Look at it several times. You’ll see that one floor finally lost its strength and ability to hold the 30 or 40 floors above it anymore. Gravity is a far more dangerous killer than explosives are. You merely have to weaken one floor just enough and let gravity do the rest. The impact of the plane, the fires did just enough to bring down the South Tower.

    As much as I think our government is very nefarious and does many evil things, this is not one of theirs. 9/11 was Al-Qaeda’s through and through.

  36. Visual perception and interpretation can be deceptive. Other video images fully support the explosive hypothesis. The laws of physics and probability, etc., just don’t support the fire/damage one, in my strongly held view.

    Based on your Conner posts, I think it would truly be a waste of both our times to explore differences of opinion on this issue.

    As I mentioned, our views on the function and operation of scientific investigation seems to be very divergent. And I’ve had too many years in the halls of science to be able to change my approach to such things.

  37. hey no worries, Brad, you can believe whatever you want to believe. Just know that others, like me, have very good reasons to believe otherwise. The reason I speak so bluntly on a blog like Connor’s is that people like Connor and his readers jump waaaaay too quickly to conspiratorial conclusions.

    The thing about buildings and airplanes is that we just haven’t been able to test airplane crashes enough to really make the judgment that buildings like the two towers would not collapse because of planes crashing into them. There are too many variables to make such a statement without any supporting previous evidence. We can make statements that such and such material built a certain way is impenetrable, but without actual testing, our statement is not factual, but merely theoretical.

    The laws of physics and probability, etc., just don’t support the fire/damage one, in my strongly held view.

    Finally, I just want to add that in my strongly held view it is the laws of physics and probability that lead me to my conclusion that indeed it was fire and damage that did those two towers (and WTC7 in). This is why we shouldn’t really make definitive statements about one theory or the other.

    But in the end, what does it for me is that it is unfathomable that a government as inept as that of the Bush administration could execute such a brilliant hocus-pocus on the population. That is where the controlled demolition theory goes to pot.

  38. Daniel, in response to the last paragraph, its because they are really good actors with one hell of a script.

  39. Dan,

    Yup, thanks Conner. You’ve driven home the point that further dialogue would be a wase of time.


  40. Dan, I think we’d be friends in real life. I appreciate your blogging here and over at that other site.


  41. Thanks Andrew’s Miracle Drug. 🙂

  42. Hey Daniel

  43. Hey Daniel
    I doing a arugment paper on Hillary Clinton why should she be America President. where can I get information for Hillary, what are the main arugment of her be a woman run for President.
    Can you email me at Sianijcpink@yaoo.com
    Thank you

  44. Thanks for doing this blog. People say you should never mix politics with religion, but the way they relate to each other is fascinating. It’s perhaps my greatest source of entertainment. 🙂 I regard myself as liberal Mormon, but I think I’m pretty moderate in general. I can relate to your view on things.

  45. Hi Dan,

    Nice to see that you are alive and well on the Internet. I just got kicked off of LDSLinkup for the 3rd time. You remember me, right? 😉 Mormonchessplayer, aka, Muad’Dib?

  46. Hey Michael,

    Yeah, Linkup sucks, doesn’t it? I appreciate that I met my wife there, but Jed is not keeping up with the times.

    So welcome to my blog. 🙂

  47. I met my wife there too, but there is selective enforcement of rules. Some people are allowed to get away with threatening people, others aren’t. But oh well.

    Any predictions for 2008? Now, deep down in your heart you know that Obama doesn’t exactly have smooth sailing into the White House. This election won’t be a cakewalk for him, despite the prevailing mood.

  48. Michael,

    Yeah, there are a lot of inconsistencies in how that site is managed.

    As for Obama and 2008, I believe Obama will win in November. And I do think he will win fairly handily. It won’t be smooth, and there will be quite a number of Republican operatives who will do what they can to tear him down, but they won’t succeed. Not this time. Bush is pushing to start the Gitmo trials before the November election (par for the course with him), because he knows that under the Democrat starting in January, these guys in Gitmo will not be charged as he wants to charge them, in kangaroo courts. I worry that he might try a ‘rally-around-the-flag’ bombing of Iran before he leaves office. (He so needed to be impeached in 2004!).

    I think Republicans are going to lose very badly in the Congressional elections. (they lost 3 supposedly safe seats already). There might even be the possibility (though unlikely) of Democrats gaining up to 60 seats in the Senate. 🙂

    General Petraeus has put up enough walls throughout Baghdad that Sunnis and Shi’ites cannot go around killing each other as much anymore. There has been an ethnic cleansing going on in most neighborhoods so that now you cannot find many Shi’ites in distinctly Sunni neighborhoods and vice versa. There is little if any progress on the political reconciliation front, and it frankly makes Iraq look like another fractured Lebanon, which is not a good thing at all. Iran will continue to have more influence than we will, even with our 150,000 strong army there. That’s a real embarrassment, frankly, that the world’s most powerful military has less influence than Iran in Iraq. But that’s one of the consequences of many of Bush’s policies there. He should have gotten out like he originally planned to, within months. Let Iraqis deal with their headless country on their own.

    The numbers out of Iraq, as far as Americans dead are concerned do not tell an accurate picture. True in May there were, what, a mere 19 American soldiers killed? What obfuscates that number is the massive increase in sorties for air power. We’re dropping bombs everywhere now instead of sending in the troops. This leads to an increase in Iraqi dead, but a decrease in Americans dead. It plays great back home, but will ultimately be self-defeating (as with the rest of our policies in Iraq).

    As long as McCain continues to tie himself to Bush, he will lose; badly.

  49. Good posts, particularly on the Middle-East. Kudos. I’ll have to keep an eye on the blog.

  50. WOW! That’s about all I can say for your site Daniel! Best of luck at whatever you choose to do in the future! You’re gonna need it!

  51. […] Who I Am Posted by: Daniel | August 29, 2008 […]

  52. I haven’t been very political in my past, but I have been enjoying reading this blog. It has been interesting to see everyone’s impression on what is happening. I hope that we will elect the candidate that would do what the Lord would have him [or her] do.

  53. I wish more people knew of what is going on in America.
    If your civil rights are violated, and you have no money for a lawyer, you have NO access to the courts. Did you know that?

    This country has enaced Ex Post Facto law, and punishing thousands of people for a crime they committed 10, 20, 30.. 50 years ago and have satisfied the contract of their sentence.
    These people have gone on, not committing any more crimes, and gotten married, had kids, new careers and new lives. All of a sudden, in 2006, George Bush passed Unconstitutional Ex Post Facto law, and RE SENTENCED these people who have served their time to countless more punishments.
    I would love to see you research this and speak out about it.
    The effect is devestating on the children of these people. Come watch a video by an innocent 14 year old who’s life has been forever impacted by the implementation of unconstitutional ex post facto law. This child represents THOUSANDS of children being daily raped by our crooked government.

  54. I’ve been ‘enjoying’ your discussion with Dave. Though I almost feel sorry that you have more blog cred than I do to prevent him from banning you. Luckily, he decided to ban me for criticizing his absurd cracks at anyone who doesn’t align with his naive political approaches. Though I’ll admit now it’s almost frustrating for him to spout what he does and not be able to respond. Good luck with it all.

    Also, I enjoy your blog. Keep up the good work.

  55. Thanks narrator. You think Dave is going to ban me?

  56. He won’t ban you because you are too established as a blogger. Since I am a relative nobody he didn’t hesitate to ban me.

  57. Nice write-up, Dan. I’m glad you point out you’re a moderate … I somehow didn’t pick that up in the posts where you peg conservatives as “stupid.” If you want to claim a moderate label, you should use moderate language. No one’s perfect and sometimes blogging brings out the worst in us — maybe we can all try for a little more moderation.

    Narrator, it seems you can’t tell the difference between posting different and opposing viewpoints in comments versus being rude and insulting to the guy who runs the site and other commenters. Blogging 101 — if you make yourself obnoxious enough, people get tired of you.

  58. Dave,

    I wish I could be more moderate with my words, but conservatives have gone hard right and have honestly said some really stupid things. But I really am a moderate. I would probably have voted for McCain in 2000. At this point, however, after these past eight years, unless Republicans change their behavior, I will not be kind to them.

  59. Yeah, it’s funny what a few years in office will do to your opinion of a candidate or a party. I’m betting that after seeing Obama in office for four years … you’ll be running a site called “The Good Republican.” Or at least “The Better Democrat.”

  60. I might. However, I was sad to see Clinton go, because as far as governing philosophy goes, he did a very good job. Ronald Reagan was pretty good too, though the Iran-Contra thing really tore into his legacy/image and the protection of the United States.

    Because you don’t know me personally, and because you only know me during the Bush administration, it’s hard to see that I’m really not that extreme.

  61. Great blog! I just stumbled across you on LDS BLOGS. My husband and I just built a website (MormonsMadeSimple.com) which uses simple, explanatory videos to explain the Mormon faith. Feel free to embed one of our videos in your blog, if you think it would be a good missionary tool.

    Laurel & Doug

  62. Just waiting for another 4 year term, I need to feel the democratic status.

    NRA Hare oneillvaldez

  63. Dan,

    Could you email me? Thanks.

    Chris H.

  64. welcome back to my blog Chris.

  65. Hey, I like the new design.

  66. Thanks. Got tired of the old one. I had that one for like two years.

  67. your quote: “The numbers out of Iraq, as far as Americans dead are concerned do not tell an accurate picture. True in May there were, what, a mere 19 American soldiers killed? What obfuscates that number is the massive increase in sorties for air power. We’re dropping bombs everywhere now instead of sending in the troops. This leads to an increase in Iraqi dead, but a decrease in Americans dead.” What numbers?

  68. Nice site. I think your political views are spot on.

    Lose the religious pandering, though. You say you don’t believe in torture or the war, perhaps you should look at the history of the catholic church.

  69. Jon,

    If I were Catholic you’d have a point. 🙂

  70. Daniel, I apologize for my rant on MM. My bad.

  71. No problem Arlene.

  72. There is no way to contact you on this blog other than by writing a comment.

    In response to your other responses – you are right. It is your blog.


  73. why do you need to contact me?

  74. Daniel- thanks for the Good Dem site, I appreciate finding someone with similar direction and beliefs.

  75. Daniel, I like this site man. I agree with your political views, and plan to read up on your religious ones. I am a Christian, but not in a conservative-fundamental way. This view didn’t exist back 2000 years ago, and shouldn’t now.
    Anyway, I am a big advocate for human rights (including torture), against war except in extreme circumstances, against international poverty, and for American prison reform. The picture of America is not good right now. We are divided and vulnerable due to ignorance and hate. Keep up the good fight brother.

  76. You write that “There Is No “Right of Secession” Guaranteed by the Constitution.” No arguement there.

    However, the Constitution is not a national Constitution; for states made it– the Constitution did not make the states.

    Thus, the Constitution could not have formed the states into a single nation, unless they clearly and expressly said so therein– and they didn’t.

    And sovereign states can only change their sovereignty by express and clear language declaring such;; absent this, all writings between states are purely voluntary stipulations, since no law can bind a state’s sovereign power.

    In fact, the states didn’t never even expressly acknowledge the USA as a sovereign state unto itself– as did Great Britain recognize the individual states as sovereign, via the 1783 Treat of Paris. Therefore, all American “sovereignty” exists solely by proxy, via the individual states delegating various powers to their constitutional federal government– while “the union” itself has no sovereignty of its own as an actual nation. Rather, it is simply an organization among separate nations, or “sovereign states.”

    So it doesn’t really matter what the Constitution says, so long as it doesn’t clearly and expressly relinquish any state’s soveriegnty to another– or acknowledge any new sovereign state among them to receive such (e.g. “the USA”)– shyster’s arguments of implied intent notwithstanding. On the contrary, sustaining such arbitrary challenges would void all national sovereignty, since any regime could then conquer any sovereign nation, via a mere challenge backed by sufficient military force to overcome the nation’s defenses– ala Saddam Hussein against Kuwait etc.

    In conclusion, the U.S. is only perceived as a sovereign nation, as a result of repeated lies, and suppression of the truth; however no good ever came from that. By law, the American states are still as sovereign as Kuwait: for their sovereignties were suppressed solely via the same combination of force and false authority, and so the sovereignty of all must stand or fall together.

  77. (Correction to above:)

    “In fact, the states didn’t ever even expressly acknowledge the USA as a sovereign state unto itself”.

    Apologies for the sloppy editing.

  78. kirkskywalker,

    Wow, you’ve built up such a confusing logic that is based far too much on assumptions that do not rest in real life. Let’s start at the top

    the Constitution is not a national Constitution

    yes it is. Just look at the text of the preamble of the Constitution:

    We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

    That’s the purpose of the Constitution. The people of the United States, not of divided, separate, sovereign states, IN ORDER TO FORM A MORE PERFECT UNION, establish this Constitution for the United States of America. Sorry man, your analysis is flawed at its core. The rest of your points rest on whether or not the Constitution is for the United States or for the disparate states. Sadly, your argument doesn’t stand against the facts. The Constitution is for the nation, not for the states. Don’t get confused by what this country is called. The word “states” in United States does not indicate that the states within the Union are separate sovereign entities. This should be perfectly clear by the fact that states cannot have their own separate armies and navies. Nowhere in the Constitution does it indicate that states have any right to their own armies and navies. It’s quite clear that only the nation as a whole gets that right. Thus with the monopoly of violence solely in the hands of the nation, as written in the Constitution, states themselves have absolutely no sovereign authority. It just doesn’t exist. Never has. Only in the fantasy world of those who still unconscionably support the defeated Southern rebels.

  79. The people of the United States, not of divided, separate, sovereign states, IN ORDER TO FORM A MORE PERFECT UNION, establish this Constitution for the United States of America. Sorry man, your analysis is flawed at its core.

    No, “man,” the simple absence of any express relinquishment of any state’s sovereignty, absolutely precludes the possibilty of such effet; for state sovereignty is not subject to challenges based on subjective allegations– only clear, express and direct relinquishments thereof… and the Constitution contains none.

    Consider the Paris Peace Treaty of 1783:

    His Brittanic Majesty acknowledges the said United States, viz., New Hampshire, Massachusetts Bay, Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia, to be free sovereign and independent states, that he treats with them as such, and for himself, his heirs, and successors, relinquishes all claims to the government, propriety, and territorial rights of the same and every part thereof.

    As we see, this passage expressly recognizes new sovereign states, and expressly relinquishes Britain’s sovereign claims to the land in question. In contrast, the Constitution doesn’t; and so it can’t, no matter how you slice it (or dice, twist and mutilate).

    Again, you’re challenging state sovereignty based on a construction of mere semantic langauge– not express clear statements of direct intent to relinquish that sovereignty, or to recognize a new sovereign state. And that kills your argument… just like it killed Saddam Hussein’s identical legal argument against the sovereignty of Kuwait.

  80. heh, and you’re gonna listen to the King of England? Let me recommend to you a better source. Some dude named George Washington…


    The unity of government which constitutes you one people is also now dear to you. It is justly so, for it is a main pillar in the edifice of your real independence, the support of your tranquility at home, your peace abroad; of your safety; of your prosperity; of that very liberty which you so highly prize. But as it is easy to foresee that, from different causes and from different quarters, much pains will be taken, many artifices employed to weaken in your minds the conviction of this truth; as this is the point in your political fortress against which the batteries of internal and external enemies will be most constantly and actively (though often covertly and insidiously) directed, it is of infinite moment that you should properly estimate the immense value of your national union to your collective and individual happiness; that you should cherish a cordial, habitual, and immovable attachment to it; accustoming yourselves to think and speak of it as of the palladium of your political safety and prosperity; watching for its preservation with jealous anxiety; discountenancing whatever may suggest even a suspicion that it can in any event be abandoned; and indignantly frowning upon the first dawning of every attempt to alienate any portion of our country from the rest, or to enfeeble the sacred ties which now link together the various parts…

    The name of American, which belongs to you in your national capacity, must always exalt the just pride of patriotism more than any appellation derived from local discriminations…

    But these considerations, however powerfully they address themselves to your sensibility, are greatly outweighed by those which apply more immediately to your interest. Here every portion of our country finds the most commanding motives for carefully guarding and preserving the union of the whole.

    With such powerful and obvious motives to union, affecting all parts of our country, while experience shall not have demonstrated its impracticability, there will always be reason to distrust the patriotism of those who in any quarter may endeavor to weaken its bands.

    In contemplating the causes which may disturb our Union, it occurs as matter of serious concern that any ground should have been furnished for characterizing parties by geographical discriminations, Northern and Southern, Atlantic and Western; whence designing men may endeavor to excite a belief that there is a real difference of local interests and views. One of the expedients of party to acquire influence within particular districts is to misrepresent the opinions and aims of other districts. You cannot shield yourselves too much against the jealousies and heartburnings which spring from these misrepresentations; they tend to render alien to each other those who ought to be bound together by fraternal affection.

    To the efficacy and permanency of your Union, a government for the whole is indispensable. No alliance, however strict, between the parts can be an adequate substitute; they must inevitably experience the infractions and interruptions which all alliances in all times have experienced. Sensible of this momentous truth, you have improved upon your first essay, by the adoption of a constitution of government better calculated than your former for an intimate union, and for the efficacious management of your common concerns. This government, the offspring of our own choice, uninfluenced and unawed, adopted upon full investigation and mature deliberation, completely free in its principles, in the distribution of its powers, uniting security with energy, and containing within itself a provision for its own amendment, has a just claim to your confidence and your support. Respect for its authority, compliance with its laws, acquiescence in its measures, are duties enjoined by the fundamental maxims of true liberty. The basis of our political systems is the right of the people to make and to alter their constitutions of government. But the Constitution which at any time exists, till changed by an explicit and authentic act of the whole people, is sacredly obligatory upon all. The very idea of the power and the right of the people to establish government presupposes the duty of every individual to obey the established government.

    Then I would recommend another American president, one Andrew Jackson


    The ordinance is founded, not on the indefeasible right of resisting acts which are plainly unconstitutional, and too oppressive to be endured, but on the strange position that any one State may not only declare an act of Congress void, but prohibit its execution- that they may do this consistently with the Constitution-that the true construction of that instrument permits a State to retain its place in the Union, and yet be bound by no other of its laws than those it may choose to consider as constitutional. It is true they add, that to justify this abrogation of a law, it must be palpably contrary to the Constitution, but it is evident, that to give the right of resisting laws of that description, coupled with the uncontrolled right to decide what laws deserve that character, is to give the power of resisting all laws. For, as by the theory, there is no appeal, the reasons alleged by the State, good or bad, must prevail. If it should be said that public opinion is a sufficient check against the abuse of this power, it may be asked why it is not deemed a sufficient guard against the passage of an unconstitutional act by Congress. There is, however, a restraint in this last case, which makes the assumed power of a State more indefensible, and which does not exist in the other. There are two appeals from an unconstitutional act passed by Congress-one to the judiciary, the other to the people and the States. There is no appeal from the State decision in theory; and the practical illustration shows that the courts are closed against an application to review it, both judges and jurors being sworn to decide in its favor. But reasoning on this subject is superfluous, when our social compact in express terms declares, that the laws of the United States, its Constitution, and treaties made under it, are the supreme law of the land; and for greater caution adds, “that the judges in every State shall be bound thereby, anything in the Constitution or laws of any State to the contrary notwithstanding.” And it may be asserted, without fear of refutation, that no federative government could exist without a similar provision. Look, for a moment, to the consequence. If South Carolina considers the revenue laws unconstitutional, and has a right to prevent their execution in the port of Charleston, there would be a clear constitutional objection to their collection in every other port, and no revenue could be collected anywhere; for all imposts must be equal. It is no answer to repeat that an unconstitutional law is no law, so long as the question of its legality is to be decided by the State itself, for every law operating injuriously upon any local interest will be perhaps thought, and certainly represented, as unconstitutional, and, as has been shown, there is no appeal.

    If this doctrine had been established at an earlier day, the Union would have been dissolved in its infancy. The excise law in Pennsylvania, the embargo and non-intercourse law in the Eastern States, the carriage tax in Virginia, were all deemed unconstitutional, and were more unequal in their operation than any of the laws now complained of; but, fortunately, none of those States discovered that they had the right now claimed by South Carolina. The war into which we were forced, to support the dignity of the nation and the rights of our citizens, might have ended in defeat and disgrace instead of victory and honor, if the States, who supposed it a ruinous and unconstitutional measure, had thought they possessed the right of nullifying the act by which it was declared, and denying supplies for its prosecution. Hardly and unequally as those measures bore upon several members of the Union, to the legislatures of none did this efficient and peaceable remedy, as it is called, suggest itself. The discovery of this important feature in our Constitution was reserved to the present day. To the statesmen of South Carolina belongs the invention, and upon the citizens of that State will, unfortunately, fall the evils of reducing it to practice.

    If the doctrine of a State veto upon the laws of the Union carries with it internal evidence of its impracticable absurdity, our constitutional history will also afford abundant proof that it would have been repudiated with indignation had it been proposed to form a feature in our Government…

    I consider, then, the power to annul a law of the United States, assumed by one State, incompatible with the existence of the Union, contradicted expressly by the letter of the Constitution, unauthorized by its spirit, inconsistent with every principle on which It was founded, and destructive of the great object for which it was formed.

    Yeah, these two SOUTHERNERS surely didn’t know what they were talking about.

  81. Well, Jackson certainly didn’t; note that he doesn’t cite a single law or fact to support his conclusion- just his personal allegations backed by nothing but fire-eating rhetoric so rabid that even Unionists don’t cite it for fear of being mocked.

    As for Washington, he doesn’t anywhere expressly say that the union is a sovereign nation; again, you’re simply repeating common layman’s misinterpretations of his words– completely obvlivious as to their actual meaning and context– in order to support your foregone conclusions: a perfect “self-fulfilling sophistry.”

    If you want to quote a REAL expert on the Constitution, you can’t beat good ol’ James Madison, its proverbial “Father:”

    The Constitution of the United States was formed by the sanction of the states, given by each in its sovereign capacity. It adds to the stability and dignity, as well as to the authority, of the Constitution, that it rests on this legitimate and solid foundation. The states, then, being the parties to the constitutional compact, and in their sovereign capacity, it follows of necessity that there can be no tribunal, above their authority, to decide, in the last resort, whether the compact made by them be violated; and consequently, that, as the parties to it, they must themselves decide, in the last resort, such questions as may be of sufficient magnitude to require their interposition.

    However true, therefore, it may be, that the judicial department is, in all questions submitted to it by the forms of the Constitution, to decide in the last resort, this resort must necessarily be deemed the last in relation to the authorities of the other departments of the government; not in relation to the rights of the parties to the constitutional compact, from which the judicial, as well as the other departments, hold their delegated trusts. On any other hypothesis, the delegation of judicial power would annul the authority delegating it; and the concurrence of this department with the others in usurped powers, might subvert forever, and beyond the possible reach of any rightful remedy, the very Constitution which all were instituted to preserve.

    –James Madison, Report on the Virginia Resolutions

    Again, you can’t find a single clear, express and direct relinquishment of sovereignty by any state, EVER– and therefore legally, there weren’t any: again that’s how national sovereignty works.

    Perhaps you believe in Saddam Hussein’s law, wherein “allegation + force = valid international sovereignty over any state.” However, live by Saddam Hussein’s law, die by Saddam Hussein’s law– he certainly did.

  82. Again, you can’t find a single clear, express and direct relinquishment of sovereignty by any state, EVER– and therefore legally, there weren’t any: again that’s how national sovereignty works.

    Dude, you’re pretty dumb. The individual states within the United States NEVER had any sovereignty. They were never free states. They never existed as anything but a part of something else, whether the British Empire or the United States of America. The only reason there never was any direct, clear language about their sovereign status was because THEY NEVER HAD IT.

    Why are conservatives so stupid?

  83. “Dude, you’re pretty dumb.”

    Said the pot to the kettle.

    “The individual states within the United States NEVER had any sovereignty. They were never free states. They never existed as anything but a part of something else, whether the British Empire or the United States of America.”

    The United States of America was never a sovereign nation, and that’s all that matters.

    “The only reason there never was any direct, clear language about their sovereign status was because THEY NEVER HAD IT.”

    Au contraire, mon frer: note the direct, clear language below which says expresly that they DO have it:

    We, therefore, the representatives of the United States of America, in General Congress, assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the name, and by the authority of the good people of these colonies, solemnly publish and declare, that these united colonies are, and of right ought to be free and independent states; that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the state of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as free and independent states, they have full power to levy war, conclude peace, contract alliances, establish commerce, and to do all other acts and things which independent states may of right do.

    –US Declaration of Independence

    That’s pretty clear: each state was declared to be a sovereign nation unto itself. Free and independent states cannot also be subordinate parts of a single sovereign state, as you claim they were; that would slightly put a damper on the “free and independent” part.


    Article II. Each state retains its sovereignty, freedom, and independence, and every Power, Jurisdiction, and right, which is not by this confederation expressly delegated to the United States, in Congress assembled.
    –The Articles of Confederation

    So each state expressly REMAINS sovereign– i.e. a separate nation.

    And finally:

    His Brittanic Majesty acknowledges the said United States, viz., New Hampshire, Massachusetts Bay, Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia, to be free sovereign and independent states, that he treats with them as such, and for himself, his heirs, and successors, relinquishes all claims to the government, propriety, and territorial rights of the same and every part thereof.
    — Paris Peace Treaty of 1783

    That’s all plain, clear and direct English, and there’s no need to explain it.

    “Why are conservatives so stupid?”

    Because you don’t LISTEN!

  84. The United States of America was never a sovereign nation, and that’s all that matters.

    You’re dumb. I’ve had enough of you.

  85. Legal opinions are like… every other kind of opinion. Everyone’s got one.

    My uncle-in-law swears blind that taxation is illegal, virtually every aspect of federal government lacks authority, and so on and so forth. And he’s got oodles of references, citations and quotes, as well as detailed opinions from lawyers who are (or claim to be) experts in the field. He’s got an answer to every objection, a comeback to any question.

    Guess what?

    It doesn’t mean a single thing. The adversarial legal system depends, by its very nature, on having at least two sides to every question. No matter how settled, sensible or uncontroversial a legal viewpoint is, you can cook up an exhaustively argued opposing view. That’s been known since Aristotle.

    Until a court of sufficient standing agrees with your legal theory, it remains just a theory. You can always argue that some future enlightened court will do so. But until then, it’s worth no more than anyone else’s theory.

  86. I like your blog and your comments on the Mormanity blog about Preserving Freedom: Hard to Die in Ignorance. Thank you for speaking out so eloquently.

  87. thanks Alan.

  88. Daniel, I would be interested in what you think of Frank Schaeffer?

  89. Troll,

    Just looked him up on wikipedia. No clue who he is.

  90. Trying to subscribe to your blog.

  91. Strange as it may sound, the causes of the Civil War have become an issue in a legislative race in northwestern Montana. See my website and mtcowgirl dot com for more information.

    Your discussions of the Civil War are outstanding and very helpful.

  92. I’m glad they helped

  93. Hey Daniel, been trying to find your contact email to no avail. Would you contact me about guest posting for fMh’s Manuary? Thanks.

  94. I just wanted to say I enjoyed your most recent comment on T&S, about Reagan. Thanks

  95. Thanks Scw. It looks like that comment also ruffled some feathers.

  96. Hi, Dan. Long time, no talk. Just saw your post on feministmormonhousewives and had a feeling it might be you. Sure enough, it is. Hope you and your family are doing well!

  97. Thanks Debra. The family is doing well. 🙂

  98. I’m a conservative Tea Party, Bush-loving, Iraq War supporting, free-market, pro-life Mormon. I think global warming is a bunch of hot air. I really get a kick out of Glenn Beck and I’d never vote for Harry Reid.

    I often asked the very common question, “How can you possibly be a Mormon and a Democrat?” Like most people who ask such a question, I was asking it rhetorically. Then I grew up or something and started asking the question sincerely.

    Yada yada yada. I wrote an entire book answering that question, and I did so in a way that appeals to the conservative mind.
    And I called the book…

    … How Can You Possibly be a Mormon and a Democrat?

    Yes, that old rhetorical, even accusatory question. A commonly suggested title was “How You CAN be a Mormon and a Democrat?” That’s nice ‘n all, but vey few conservatives would go near that book and I wouldn’t want to alienate my target audience.

    So, attention, all you Mormon Democrats! This book was NOT written to you. It was not written FOR you. It was written in YOUR defense. It hasn’t changed anyone’s political views, but it has succeeded wonderfully in softening the hearts of the staunchest of conservatives. Whew!

    Just search for “Mormon democrat” on Amazon. Or try this link: http://www.amazon.com/How-Can-Possibly-Mormon-Democrat/dp/1453819533

  99. good blog. You may be interested in my blog and thoughts on the Iraq war (among other things). Here I am on the war:


  100. Hi Daniel,

    I apologize for the indirect communication (I couldn’t locate an email address), but my wife and I have enjoyed reading and perusing your blog for some time and were thinking/hoping that you might be interested in a blog that we have recently begun with a few others: http://voiceoftheorder.blogspot.com/ . Being complete neophytes in the blogosphere/bloggernacle, I was hoping that you might take a glance there and consider whether my initial posting would be of interest to you or your readers/contributors/etc. If such is the case, I would kindly request that you mention it, link to it, or comment upon it in order to generate traffic and interest in what I hope will become an innovative and relevant topic to interested members of the LDS community. We’d appreciate any links (or advice for that matter).

    Please keep up the good work in providing an interesting and valuable resource for the online LDS community.

    Best regards,


  101. Be safe this weekend, Dan.

  102. thanks firetag. sorry, your comment was under spam

  103. Daniel,

    I have asked previously if you delete all of my comments on your site. I would appreciate it if you would do so.

    Thank you.

    • Hi Nathan,

      sorry I haven’t been on here in some time. I’ll grant your request. Next time, stand by what you say. 🙂

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