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Welcome to Varied Expressions of Worship

Welcome to Varied Expressions of Worship

This blog will be written from an orthodox Christian point of view. There may be some topic that is out of bounds, but at present I don't know what it will be. Politics is a part of life. Theology and philosophy are disciplines that we all participate in even if we don't think so. The Bible has a lot to say about economics. How about self defense? Is war ethical? Think of all the things that someone tells you we should not touch and let's give it a try. Everything that is a part of life should be an expression of worship.

Keep it courteous and be kind to those less blessed than you, but by all means don't worry about agreeing. We learn more when we get backed into a corner.

Sunday, May 19, 2019

Saturday, May 18, 2019

Opus 2019-087: Term Limits

One of the complaints we have about our political leaders is that they become career politicians and have not sense of who we are as a people.  They live in their beltway bubble and only come out to campaign.  Look at people like Joe Biden who has been in political offices for 50 years.  That doesn’t leave a lot of time to have worked a real job.  One of the reasons people in power don’t like Donald Trump is that he has been forced to meet a payroll and produce results.  He does not have the mindset of career politicians.  He does not fit in.

One of the solutions to this is term limits.  Term limits is legislation that limits the number of times a person can be elected to an office.  The only such limit in the Constitution has to do with president and that was not in the original document.  It was added in the 22nd Amendment as a response to the four terms of Franklin Delano Roosevelt.  His long run put people in fear of a popular president setting himself up for life as has happened so often in the world.  America has not wanted a king, at least in the past.

The Founding Fathers were not big fans of term limits.  If they had been then we would see it in the Constitution.  They seemed to feel that the arbitrators of length of service should be the voters.  They deliberately made it easy to vote out members of the House of Representative by having them all run for reelection every two years.  Since they were the authors of spending bills this made it easy for people to get rid of them and find a replacement.  The Senate, on the other hand, served for six years.  It was supposed to give them time to deliberate and not be so sensitive to the emotions of the people.  The Senate was originally elected by the state legislators which further isolated them from the fickle nature of the masses.  But there were no term limits.

Keep in mind that term limits work both ways.  It gets rid of dead weight but also dumps people who are doing a good job and have the experience to get things done.  Usually we have different people we want thrown out, depending on our political party.

At present I am against term limits.  Members of Congress are elected to represent the people they serve.  If the people don’t like them then vote the suckers out.  The fact that most people are not paying attention is no excuse.  As much as I would like to see Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer depart the scene, that is up to the people who elected them, not me or my cronies. 

The answer to the fools in Congress is to have fewer fools in the ballot box.  That means more discussion in the public square by you and me.  That means educating ourselves and plugging along.  That is why Face Book, Twitter and Google are so set on driving conservative voices out of the public conversation.

Keep talking while you have a chance.

homo unius libri

Friday, May 17, 2019

Opus 2019-086: Baby Talk: Skill Sets

I am developing my one hand skills.  It only requires one arm to hold a baby, but surely there is something you can do with the other.

Have you ever tried to blow your nose with one hand?  For that matter have you ever had trouble getting a tissue out of a resistant box with only one hand?  This is something that we don’t think about a lot.  Try to use a can opener with one hand.  How about tying your shoes?  The list goes on and holding a baby forces you to grow.

Of course some of us have trouble doing some of these things with two hands. 

homo unius libri

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Opus 2019-085: Election 2020: The Mud Settles More in the Water

The lust to destroy Western culture is in the process of removing another hurdle from the race.  The Progressives are experts at getting the camel’s nose under the tent using the American desire to be fair.  They then keep pushing, redefining the terms, moving the goal posts until they reach the point of cutting off the head that offends them.

It seems to me that another milestone has been reached as we see women’s sports being destroyed.  I refer to the growing trend to allow “transgenders”, men claiming to be female, to compete as women in women’s sports.  We now even see the leader of the culture smashers, Nancy Pelosi, introducing legislation at the federal level to add these people to the list of those protected against discrimination.  These are the people who brought you the spectacle of men walking into women’s bathroom, boys taking showers in the girls locker rooms and the removal of gender pronouns from textbooks. 

It starts with a claim to treat all people equally.  The Declaration of Independence has that concept but the Founding Fathers expected it to be applied with a little common sense and a common sense of morality.  It makes sense that if a boy is racing his hot rod against a lady in her souped up racer that both would get the same speeding ticket and fines.  It does not make sense to allow a testosterone loaded guy to put on a wig and win a wrestling competition against someone with estrogen conditioned muscles.  Not only does it not make sense, it is stupid.  Not only is it stupid, it is evil.  Yet that is where the Democrats (Liberals, Progressives, Communists, Rinos, elites) are at. 

And they keep coming.

If you are one of those people who has been intimidated into perpetual silence as this attack against our culture goes on then enjoy the world your fear is building.  The attack based on gender differences is just one prong.  Eventually these people will get to where you live.

Elections matter.  Values matter.  Morals matter. 

homo unius libri

Sunday, May 12, 2019

Opus 2019-084: On the Street: False Advertising

It is hard to go through the blogs on the internet without constantly being barraged by guys trying to raise their viewer stats by posting pictures of babes.  One I appreciate is Theo Spark.  I think he has the pictures but he forces you to click on a link and draws you with words like “skin”, “topless” and “nipples”.  I appreciate the fact that the site allows me to decide whether I want to go voyeur or keep my mind out of the gutter. 

For some reason my thoughts went to a major source of revenue for governments.  The pictures I have seen make me think that we could generate a lot of money if we put a special tax on silicon.  I am not saying that these ladies are a bit out of balance but I somehow think that a lot of what they are showing off is false advertising.  It is kind of like making a large soft drink by adding water to a medium.

In Japan many of the restaurants will have pictures of the items up for sale.  Some even make up plastic models that look very real.  Rarely did the actual product live up to the hype.

homo unius libri

Friday, May 10, 2019

Opus 2019-083: Headlines: How Dare You

When you travel you pass through points of broadcast but don’t always get the whole story.  Since it is questionable that the Fake News and Semi-Fake news outlets ever had the whole story you can imagine how little we really know.

Most of us have heard about the fire at Notre Dame cathedral.  You may have heard about how the pledges and donations are pouring in to the tune of a billion dollars.  I find that encouraging.  There are people in the world who are willing to do what they can to restore a world, historical and spiritual landmark. 

Then things get murky.  It seems that the “yellow vests” of Paris are not happy about all this generosity.  They seem to be upset that people are giving their own money to support their own concerns and none of it is being syphoned off by the government to the people in yellow vests.  Here is where it gets into the Land of the Fake.  How much of what we are hearing is true or even half-truth? 

I have not taken a position on the yellow vest protestors.  It is a French thing.  I do know I have expressed the point that people who protest this way are not so much against high taxes as they are against any kind of demand that they pay their way.  I would say that if they are really angry that people are giving to rebuild the church then they are simply snowflakes in yellow vests.  We know that we are to be leery of yellow snow.  Maybe the same goes for yellow vests. 

Why do people want to donate to rebuild the cathedral?  There could be many reasons but a big one for a Frenchman is insurance.  Keep in mind that the French are culturally and historically Roman Catholic but they don’t go to church much.  They like to have it there in case there is an emergency.  They make big donations because they believe it will make a difference.  Historically we would call them indulgences.  When I was young it was demonstrated in a movie called Lilies of the Field.  The main character played by Sidney Poitier was asking a businessman why he had donated a big item in rebuilding the local church.  The business man had already said he did not believe the religious stuff.  His reason, “Insurance”.  If you believe in hell you could call it fire insurance.

I hope they get the damage repaired without any tax money involved.  I won’t be donating but I wish them well.

homo unius libri

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

Opus 2019-082: Firsts: Japanese Trains

When you travel by airplane local transportation is always an issue.  If you are going to a small English town and staying at a bed and breakfast with a lot of hiking trails around, all you need is a pair of good shoes.  In rural Japan where we will end up you need a car to get anywhere because of distances.  In Tokyo it seems that you follow the old, “When in Rome...” mantra because most people here get around on trains. 

In Tokyo there are trains everywhere and to everywhere.  They run on time.  The stations are clean with all kinds of maps and aids to reaching destinations.  It is a system that works if you like that kind of thing.  Tokyo is a big city in area as well as population.  In Boston, where I lived for three years, the population was not large but the area was small so mass transit worked well.  In Los Angeles you have an area larger than Tokyo with a large population but I can’t see mass transit working as it does in Japan.  The Japanese seem to thrive on the situation. 

In American subway systems you have masses of people crowding on the platforms.  When the train pulls in it is a winner takes all kind of attitude.  Not so in Tokyo.  When you come into the station you see people quietly lined up and waiting patiently.  They have arrows on the floor and labels for feet where the first person lines up.  Others patiently line up behind.  When the train pulls up they wait for people to get off and then file on without pushing or shoving.  The Japanese are a very orderly bunch, at least on the metro. 

Signs are usually in four languages: Japanese, Chinese, Korean and English.  On some lines they make announcements in English.  It is designed for large groups of foreign travelers.

You still have to do a lot of walking.  At the end of the day we are feeling it.  Or it could just be that I am getting old and am out of shape.  Or it could be both.

homo unius libri

Monday, May 6, 2019

Opus 2019-081: Election 2020, Looking Good

I don’t know what Joe Biden is taking but I think I want some.  Lest you think I have totally gone around the bend, I am not talking about what he has to say.  My default on my computer is to have the sound turned off, so I don’t know what he is talking about.  I am not sure he knows either but that is another issue.

I am talking about the Fountain of Youth that he seems to have found.  I don’t have any idea if it is a face lift, botox, an Academy Award make up man or a sudden commitment to clean living.  The man could be mistaken for his grandson. 

It tells us some things.  One, it tells us he is serious about running for president.  Often you hear that one way to judge whether someone is going for it is to watch and see if they lose weight.  With Biden it took the form of a youth pill.  Another thing it tells us is his ego is alive.  When I look in a store window I wonder who the old man is.  The question has never driven me to color my hair or buy news clothes.  Nothing will make me younger.  Evidently Biden feels different.

The critics have talked about his behavior being creepy.  That may be true but I can see that his youthful glow makes him look that way.  No matter what he does he is still an old, white dude.  That is not a problem in my book.  The problem is that he still has old, Democrat ideas.

The primaries are almost on us.  Time to wake up and smell the botox.

homo unius libri

Opus 2019-080: Principles and Promises

If I were ever foolish enough to run for elected office I would make sure that my campaign was based on principles and not promises.  One of the current hot topics is immigration.  A promise to close the border is almost impossible to achieve.  Saying that we should build the wall shows where your heart is.  Saying abortion is wrong is not the same as promising to make it illegal. 

One of the problems with campaign promises is that there is often a lot you don’t know about an issue.  Suppose I was running for city council in San Francisco.  If I were making promises I would claim that I would rid the streets of feces.  Since it is a constantly renewable resource, that would really be impossible.  Instead I would say that I believe the streets could be much cleaner than they are.  Press me and I would give more principles but when any one of the city workers’ unions could put a veto to a program, details would be useless.

We need to focus on principles.  I realize that it is not an instant cure.  Promising “transparency” in government didn’t do much to make things clear.  Like any move to improve our lives and our country it requires constant attention by individual citizens.  Sometimes that will involve being the one who calls “foul” and other times simply supporting that prophet.  It has been a long time since I read “The Kings New Clothes” but if I remember correctly it was not the child calling out the king was naked that embarrassed the king.  It was the adults that were shaken out of their stupor, looked at each other and saw the truth in other eyes.  That was the moment things began to change.

So even if you can’t be the child, be the adult.  Look for opportunities to stand on principle.  You and I may disagree on when life begins but we can agree that killing innocent children is not the answer to pregnancy.

At least I hope we can.

homo unius libri

Sunday, May 5, 2019

Opus 2019-079: Dating Game

One of the strange things about traveling half way around the world is posting on one day and seeing it dated by Blogger the day before.  It is something that plays with your head.

I should have expected it.  When we would connect from Texas to Japan we had to get used to the idea that it might be a different day.  Generally I would ignore the day an just concentrate on the time.  If it was 5:00 P.M. in Texas then it was going to be somewhere in the 5:00 A.M. stretch in Japan.  If you cared it was the next day there but generally I did not pay that much attention to detail.

I am used to looking for certain things on certain days.  For instance Stilton’s Place posted on Monday, Wednesday, Friday.  In Japan it comes on different days.  Power Line has “The Week in Pictures” on Saturday morning.  Not on Saturday morning in Japan.

You learn to adjust.  When I get home I will need to unadjust.

homo unius libri

Saturday, May 4, 2019

Opus 2019-078: Firsts: Air Raid

To you it would have been just another headline.  Rocket Man launched another missile.  Ho, Hum.  The news article said it was short range, meaning a maximum of 120 miles.  I wonder what’s for dinner.

It is a little different when you are on an Air Force base in Japan.  Suddenly the speakers start blaring something about “Real World!  Incoming missile!”  It definitely gets your attention.  Or it would have if they had repeated it a few times.  Our first real clue about what was in the announcement was when the playground across the street suddenly emptied.  There wasn’t much that could be done.  We closed the windows and pulled the shades.  I found out that the best source of information was Facebook.

Although most of the posters were just as confused as we were, we at least knew that something was up.  It was also the first place we knew that there was an “all clear”.  At last Facebook has a reason to exist.  One comment also directed us to a news article about the launch on the internet.  It was a great illustration of government efficiency.  The news article was posted an hour before the alert.  By the time we were told to duck, the missile had been in the ocean for 40 minutes. 

It was an interesting day.  It was a good reminder of what our military and their families go through around the world.

homo unius libri

Thursday, May 2, 2019

Opus 2019-077: Firsts: Anonymous

One of the adventures of travel is trying new foods.  In Japan there is usually an English subtitle or special menu for foreigners.  Sometimes you have to ask but it is there somewhere.  Of course part of the adventure is trying mystery foods.  Yesterday after coming back from a sushi restaurant we stopped at Family Mart. 

In Japan there are three large chains of stores for a quick bite: Seven-Eleven, Lawson Station and Family Mart.  They are all similar to a 7/11 in the states with different specialties.  For the 100 yen snack crowd it is Family Mart.  One reason I like it is the selection.  The other reason is that they have more frequent English sub titles.  You need to stay alert.  My son showed me one that I thought said cheese-somethings.  He told me to look again and it was cheese-fish-somethings.  I thought I had learned the lesson last time I was here when I went to Mr. Donut and picked out what looked like a cream filled pastry.  The first bite told me that the filling was creamed fish.  Surprise!  Surprise! 

Many of the things you buy only give you a cute picture.  We got what we thought was a lemon meringue cream puff.  All the label told us was “Happy Taste”.  It was not what we expected.  We are not sure what it was.  It was good, but a mystery. 

We went to the Cherry Blossom Festival.  The blooms were beautiful.  At night they had them lit up so the entire park glowed and the glow was often reflected in pools and moats.  The second attraction was the food stalls.  It was like going to the state fair and everyone with a rice cooker showed up.  We tried all kinds of things.  Some we really enjoyed.  Some were one bite wonders. 
If you are really bored you can find McDonald’s on occasion but don’t count on the menu being the same. 

I had a lot of firsts but I don’t know what they were.

homo unius libri

Sunday, April 28, 2019

Opus 2019-076: Firsts: A Trip to the Park

My granddaughter had her first trip to the park with Grandpa.  Her mother bundled her up and we headed out.  She is at the “Look world, I’m walking” stage.  Actually it is only that she thinks she is walking because it only lasts as long as someone has her hand.  But it is progress.

She likes the swing but is not ready for the slide.  She thinks she is ready for the Jungle Jim type constructs but until she becomes a believer in gravity she will not be turned loose on that.  I tried her on the grass.  She was not impressed with that but found a stick fascinating.  I tried a pine cone but it was rejected.  And of course one of the great attractions of the park is other children and the ultimate is babies.  Somehow babies are fascinated with babies.

Since I believe in being courteous I did not point out to anyone how much cuter my baby was.

homo unius libri

Opus 2019-075: Can You Dig It?

Maybe it is time to start building a 21st Century version of the fallout shelter. 

I am not fixating on nuclear holocaust.  I don’t expect Rocket Man to be able to reach Los Angeles with a nuke.  Even if he does, I live in Texas now.  I am worried about a social nuclear arms race that is taking place.  It is expressing itself now in a growing hatred of Jews by the liberals in this country.  The same hatred is simmering toward people whom are serious about their Christian faith.  It is time to prepare for the hunts. 

Historically we have a lot of precedent for building secret closets to hide people.  Those of us who went to school before it was taken over by the socialists remember that many people in Europe walled off rooms and attics to hide Jews being hunted by the Nazis.  “The Diary of a Young Girl” by Anne Frank is still being read but I don’t know what kind of editing has gone into it.  Someone hid her.  A generation ago we had the book/movie “The Hiding Place” about the ten Boom family that were arrested and killed for hiding Jews.  It is what we can expect from the growing power of Antifa and the other goons on the left.

You may have found it romantic to consider the secret passages in castles and old homes.  They were real and they had a purpose.  Many in England were built during the Catholic/Protestant religious wars.  Catholics would hide a traveling priest so that he could hold mass and then move on to another secret closet.  If he was caught he would be killed so this was a serious thing.

Escape tunnels were sometimes dug out of cabins on the frontier in America.  If the Indians trapped you and burned the house, you had a way to get out.

Or consider the stations on the Underground Railroad.  People would dig out rooms off of their cellars or false walls in the house to hide slaves that were running for freedom.

It can happen here.  I don’t know if it will start with Jews or Christians but the day will come when they come for people who live by a higher authority than the state.

Start digging.

homo unius libri

Saturday, April 27, 2019

Opus 2019-074: Geek Exorcists

After being in Japan for a couple of days my blog site started labeling everything in Japanese.  I tried everything I could think of.  I tried guessing and I think I deleted two comments I wanted to publish and left two I wanted to delete.  Because the Japanese read right to left and up to down things were rearranged.  I checked in settings and it was still set to English.  I cried in my soup.  Finally this morning I called in Geek support.  My son is traveling with me and he speaks computer.

After going through all the things I tried and he had be click a few things, he had no ideas.  So he said, “Go to your blog site.”  Okay, now we are getting somewhere.  When I started it up a miracle was seen.  It looked like it was supposed to look.  Keep in mind that at this point he had not even touched the laptop or gotten within 10 feet.  We came to the conclusion that the computer was afraid of him so it behaved.

You laugh?  It has happened before.  I have had times when I repeatedly went through the steps on a program and had nothing but adolescent rebellion.  He sits down, and I watch what he is doing, he does exactly what I did and the machine behaves.  It is one of the secrets of the Geek community.  Computers are actually afraid of these guys and behave better when the threat is real.

It isn’t always you.  Sometimes it is the evil spirits in the chips.  Sometimes you just need a Geek exorcist to deal with the problem.  Feel no shame.

homo unius libri

Thursday, April 25, 2019

Opus 2019-073: Firsts: Bidet

One of the experiences of Japan that seems so strange is using their toilets.  Set aside what you have heard about squatting over a hole in the ground.  I am sure they exist but in two trips I have yet to see that variation.  What most of you would see is the opposite.  Their toilets are high tech.

Take the standard issue in the airport.  The first thing you notice is that there are a lot of controls for such a simple process.  Fortunately there are instructions in four languages and as long as you don’t just start pushing buttons you will be fine.  If you insist on going American then you do your business, find the button marked flush and you are good to go.  Of course there is not way I know of to avoid the heated toilet seat but once you get over the surprise it is a great idea.  If you want the full cultural experience, read the labels.

Every Japanese toilet I have seen comes with a bidet.  If you don’t know what that is then you need to get out more.  It is a spray that cleans your bottom for you.  There is even a button for a different spray for women.  You can control the pressure and stop it when you are ready.  Don’t worry the water is warm.  I finally worked up the courage to try it.  For further descriptions you will need to try it yourself.

Life is full of so many things to experience.  I have now added the bidet to my list.

homo unius libri

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Opus 2019-072: On the Street: People Everywhere

I was commenting on how much diversity there was in the Japanese people we were seeing and my son gave me the classic line, “Hollywood lied to us.”

I have been experiencing rush hour on Japanese trains.  You know the video you always see of people stationed on the platform to push people on because they were so crowded.  We have not seen it that bad but I have gotten friendly with a lot of people I didn’t know.  I have ridden subways in Boston at rush hour though and must say it isn’t much different in crowding, just cleanliness.

It gives you a lot of time to look at people.  Being the only Anglo in sight gives you only Japanese to examine.  The differences are total.  Some have the look of Aztec princes.  Some look like Mongol warriors or Olmec stone heads.  Long noses sit next to squashed noses.  Although they tend to be thinner than Americans there are still a fair number of chunky locals.  Skin color has a lot of variation.  About the only thing that is consistent is the black hair.

The stereotypes from Hollywood don’t much exist.  School children are different from Anmerica because they wear uniforms and have a general courtesy we don’t see much but they still squirm, race, goof and contemplate like children anywhere.

Travel helps you understand the similarities of human cultures as well as experience the differences.  People are people.

homo unius libri

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Opus 2019-071: Firsts: Traveling Light

For the first time in my memory I have been able to travel light.  I am sure I have done it before but at my age it is farther back than I can recall.  It is an easy way to travel.

I don’t mean travel by myself.  I have done that a bit.  My wife does let me out of the house once in awhile, without supervision even.  I mean travel without anyone sending massive amounts of objects with me.  No one made me their personal Fed-Ex driver on this trip.  For instance, on my return trip I have been informed that my daughter will be packing a few large suitcases for me to bring, since I am traveling light.  Get the idea?

I could have been one of those people who brings on a small soft-sided bag and their regular carry-on.  You know the ones, they either take up all the overhead space when they get on early or try to move your stuff around so they can cram what should have been checked in the overhead compartments.  I decided to check my larger one for convenience.  I didn’t want to have to lug it around in the stop-over airport.  That left me with the rolling bag and a small carry-on.  Both fit easily in the overhead.  Both are easy to pull.

When I travel with my wife she somehow manages to make sure that four large suitcases are crammed full and often pays the charge for overweight.  In addition to that she talks her way on board with one more carry-on that is allowed.  Guess who is expected to move all this stuff?

So it has been a breeze so far.  I don’t have to worry until I start back with the extra bags.  I am getting too old for this.

homo unius libri

Sunday, April 21, 2019

Opus 2019-070: Not Bunny Hop but Lamb Hope

He is Risen!

Those simple words make a difference in how I live my day and how I look at my tomorrows.  For those who don’t know, the resurrection of Jesus is the central belief of Christianity.  Christians believe that Jesus died on a cross and in so doing paid the price for our sins.  Then He rose from the grave three days later demonstrating for us that we have a hope beyond the grave.

There are many things that divide different denominations.  Do you baptize by sprinkling a few drops or by submersion?  Do you baptize babies?  Do you use wine or grape juice at communion?  Do you call it communion, the mass, the Eucharist or some other term?  Do you have the pulpit in the middle or the side?  Do you have more than one pulpit?  I could go on but my fingers will get tired.

You know the saying about death and taxes.  Christians can remove death from the list.  Sure, the bodies will wear out.  Our remains will be buried or cremated.  We will be missed.  Death happens.  But we believe that is not the end.  It is a new beginning.  So when you get old like I am you begin to wonder what could be better than living on a hill in Texas watching the sun rise and the roadrunners run.  You begin to wonder what it is like to get your memory back.  You wonder if you will recognize that baby you lost to a miscarriage.  It makes a difference in your day.

Now all we need to worry about is taxes.

Oh, and did I tell you, He is risen!

homo unius libri

Opus 2019-069: On the Street: Signs of the Time

On the way to the airport early this morning I noticed a sign of Easter.  The message board above the lanes was talking about hopping and bunnies.  I guess I should not be surprised.  We do live in a pagan culture and there are many people trying to drive the last vestiges of Christianity out of sight.  I really don’t expect the interstate sign to announce “He is risen!”  I just think bunny hops are worse.

It is early.  Maybe I am just grouchy.

But,

He IS risen!

homo unius libri

Saturday, April 20, 2019

Opus 2019-068: On the Road Again

I am going to be traveling for the next few weeks.  I don’t know if that will mean I post even less than I have been doing or if I will be able to concentrate better.  To my knowledge I have not died nor been locked up anywhere.  Give it a few weeks to be sure.

homo unius libri

Opus 2019-067: Did Hitler Project?

One of the progressive left’s greatest projections is that of Hitler.  In case you were not paying attention in your high school or college psychology class, here is a definition from Wikipedia:
“Psychological projection is a defence (sic) mechanism in which the human ego defends itself against unconscious impulses or qualities (both positive and negative) by denying their existence in themselves while attributing them to others.”
One example is Hillary and her “vast right wing conspiracy”.  Another example is the left accusing conservative talk radio of inciting violence.  They do the same with Hitler and the Nazis.  They take the attitudes of liberals, which are very close to those of the National Socialists, and they try to lay them on Donald Trump and his conservative supporters.

They claim to be for the people when they are only for people who will fall into lock step and do what they are told.  They call us intolerant when it is the left that is attacking anyone they can’t get to agree with them.  There is no lie they won’t tell nor any distortion they will not use to try to dominate the process. 

We need to learn to stop the knee jerk reactions.  The “have you stopped beating your wife” questions need to be called out.  We need to understand that they don’t won’t to work with us they want to destroy us. 

Hitler and his cronies would be proud of them.

homo unius libri

Monday, April 15, 2019

Opus 2019-066: Baby Talk: Millennial Minefield

We had the pleasure of a month long visit by my daughter and granddaughter.  Since they left we get on Skype and Facetime and watch as the child continues to develop.  Babies take time and effort if you want them to turn out as they should.

This experience has made it clear why millennials are avoiding having children.  Although there are many exceptions, most millennials tend to be obsessed with the world serving them.  They want the good life and they want it now.  Where previous generations drove old cars and bought small fixer-upers for their first home, these young people want sporty wheels and luxury homes with amenities that used to be only in exclusive spas.  If they can’t have that then it is Uber and security apartments, or living at home with mommy.

You can’t do that and do a good job raising children.  This is not just the current crop in their productive years.  It is not a millennial problem but a problem of human nature.  There is a reason historically why the birth rate drops as people become more wealthy.  It is part of the cycle that causes cultures to become lazy and decadent.  Then the barbarians come in and take it all away from them.

The thoughts that babies generate wander all over the place.

homo unius libri

Sunday, April 14, 2019

Opus 2019-065: Why Are People Smiling?

It is Palm Sunday, the beginning of Holy Week.  Have you ever asked yourself, “Why do we have spring break in schools?”  It isn’t because the kids need a break.  It was because they needed to be involved in the events leading up to Easter.

For the general pagan population Easter is about bunny rabbits, chicks and all things chocolate.  It is about new clothes and Easter egg hunts.  It is about being out of school.  For the general population that considers themselves Christian is means all of that but also one of the two Sundays of the year that everyone goes to church.  The other is Christmas Sunday.  It might also mean you are familiar with the term “Good Friday”.

Historically Holy Week actually starts on Wednesday with something called Tenebrae.  This isn’t celebrated much any more.  Maundy Thursday commemorates the Last Supper.  Good Friday remembers the day Jesus was crucified and of course Easter Sunday celebrates the resurrection.  This is from the Western Church’s perspective. 

Although Christmas has caught the imagination of the world, Easter is at the heart of Christianity.  Some don’t like the term “Easter”.  They claim is has pagan roots.  Okay.  Call it Resurrection Sunday.  It is the most important belief that Christians have.  As the Bible summaries,
(1Co 15:14 KJV) And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain.
So if you are a believer, Happy Holy week.  Rejoice.  If you are not a believer then you know why I am smiling.

homo unius libri

Opus 2019-064: Big Words

When I visit a church I look at a number of things to get a feel for who they are.  One item I check out is the translation of the pew Bibles and the translation the pastor uses.  If they use one of the admitted paraphrases such as the New Living Translation or one that pretends to not be a paraphrase when it is, like the New International Version, I know that there is a serious problem with serious thought.

The same problem shows up in education and in what parents expect from their children.  If you are in a home and find “edited” versions of classics like Treasure Island, or even worse, “graphic novels”, you know you have a problem.  If they watch the cartoon version of the book you know it is all over.  That is the direction that schools have gone.

People justify new translations of the Bible and dumbed down text books by claiming some of the words are just too hard to understand.  This is a bogus smoke screen.  I don’t know if you have ever tried to listen to the jargon that is used by these same children.  You might wonder what language they are speaking.  The kids make up words and misuse words.  It works for them because they want to be cool and fit in.  They make the effort to learn.  If people would spend as much time trying to understand the big words in the Bible as they do figuring out the latest slang on their current You Tube videos they would have no trouble.

This is new age philosophy at work.  It actually has a title, “Deconstruction”.  It has been around longer than I have and I am getting old.  It has a lot of fancy explanations but for the average person it means that there is no meaning.  Words don’t mean what they are defined to mean.  They don’t mean what everyone accepts them to mean.  They mean what the speaker wants them to mean.  Thus there is no objective truth.  It is no coincidence that our schools are turning out snowflakes that are triggered by every challenge.

There is right and wrong.  There is good and evil.  There are acceptable standards.  For instance the issue of fidelity in marriage.  Every culture has a concept of being faithful in marriage.  It may vary in how it is applied.  Some cultures have multiple spouses.  Some cultures have a place for concubines.  They all have a line you are not allowed to cross.

Stand up for objective truth and reject any pastor, politician, teacher or leader that believes that truth is relative.

homo unius libri

Saturday, April 13, 2019

Opus 2019-063: Wildflower Watch: Indian Blankets Spread

Yesterday as I was walking I saw the beginning of Indian blanket season. 

The blue bonnets are transforming into something that looks like green bean plants.  In my yard there are a few left but most have gone to seed pods.

The Indian paintbrush are fading.  They are still there but the colors are muted. 

And of course the gazilion types of yellows are everywhere.  I need to spend some time trying to find out the differences.  I have picked up no new names this year and I should do that before the season is over.

Morning walks at this time of year are a real joy and reminder of God’s creativity. 

homo unius libri

Friday, April 12, 2019

Opus 2019-062: New Terms: Ad Hominem

Actually it is not a new term but it seems to be one that conservatives have forgotten about.  We see the left using it all the time against us.  What is funny is that they are quite willing to turn it on their own also.  A good current example is the attempt to knock Joe Biden out of the race for president in 2020.  Instead of talking about his stands on the issues they are trying to destroy him by bringing accusations out of the woodwork about his behavior around women and little girls.  It is nothing new.  It has been obvious for years.  Now suddenly he has a problem.

Ad hominem attacks mean that you attack the person instead of the position he takes.  Such an approach to debate makes it impossible for communication to happen.  It is like parlor magic, based on distraction and slight of hand.  It is impossible to defend against.  If someone calls you a liar then nothing you say matters.  If people start laughing at you they will not listen to what you say.  It works well for the rank and file Democrat voter because they don’t care about facts anyway.

The right uses it too.  Adam Schiff is attacked as “pencil neck” and there is constant emphasis on his drug stupor stare.  We see constant reference to AOC being stupid.  If it were not so common it could be overlooked but we need to take a higher road, or at least both roads at once.

It takes time and demands patience.  Remember what it was like potty training your children.  You must find the key that gets their attention.  I remember when Obama was running for president.  The common statement of students was I would not vote for him because he was black.  I would laugh at them and then start down the list of issues he was wrong on:  Abortion, Second Amendment, homosexual marriage, immigration and anything else I could think of.  The strange thing is that the kids would often agree with me on the issues but still act like brainwashed robots.  That is probably because they were brainwashed robots.

I hope that conservatives can get beyond the insults and on to the issues.

homo unius libri

Thursday, April 11, 2019

Opus 2019-061: Democracy ≠ Liberty

I keep coming across a statement that goes something like, “Democracy dies in darkness”.  It seems to be the new slogan of the Washington Post.  When you consider how much the Post does to hide the truth you realize it is another case of Newspeak which is famous for its triplet of “War is peace, Freedom is slavery, Ignorance is strength”.

That much is obvious to anyone who is awake enough to change the channel.  What is getting irritating is when I see people who identify as conservative parroting the phrase.  I have two issues with this.

First off it is liberty that dies, not democracy.  Democracy does quite well in totalitarian states.  They have elections.  Everyone is encouraged to vote.  In some places you are punished if you don’t vote.  The problem is that you only have one choice.  Our American press core is a great example of that kind of “democracy”.  It is kind of like the old line about the Model A, “You can have any color you want as long as it is black”.  Liberty usually involves a system of open and fair elections but it can also exist in anarchy.  Liberty means I am protected from the whims of a majority that hates me.  Keep in mind that Patrick Henry didn’t say, “Give me democracy, or give me death”.

Second, we are a republic, not a democracy.  We need to keep repeating that until the unwashed masses understand the difference. 

I recommend changing it to liberty.

homo unius libri

Sunday, April 7, 2019

Opus 2019-060: Even A Broken Romney Is Right Twice a Day

Remember Romney’s 47% and how the press lampooned him for it?  I keep seeing that statistic in the news.  To refresh your memory Mitt Romney said,
“There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. All right, there are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it. That that’s an entitlement. And the government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president no matter what…These are people who pay no income tax.”
He was speaking of those who would vote for Barak Obama no matter what.  It was a private meeting and one reason that Romney was probably not a good choice for president was that he thought it was really a private meeting.  The problem was not in the accuracy of his number.  The 47% is real.  As a general rule they vote Democrat.  The problem was that all the people in the 53% who live by their feelings felt like he was being unsensitive.

The number lives on.  When I look at polls about President Trump it seems that the disapproval ratings are often right around 47% if not on target.  The truth is that there is a lump of people who are dependent on the handouts of the progressives and will not do anything to endanger that freebie. 

Are they totally loss to responsible adulthood?  No.  People can change.  People can be educated.  The problem is that the progressives control education, the media and are over represented in government workers.  They pastor most of the churches. 

So where do we start?  Run for school board and don’t sell out if you are elected.  Stop doing anything that puts money into the liberals who control the mass media.  Hold your pastor’s feet to the fire.  Educate your children.  Speak up with the knowledge that for the first hundred times you will be accused of being _____aphobic.  Make sure you speak for the 101th time.

Above all, if you are a person of faith, pray.  I qualify that because the Bible is clear that God isn’t listening to those living in rebellion.  God listened to Abraham when he pleaded for Sodom.  He listened to Moses defending the children of Israel.  John Wesley’s followers kept England from going the way of the French Revolution.  The American Great Awakenings transformed our country. 

And of course, buckle up, hang on, scream if you must but enjoy the ride.

homo unius libri

Friday, April 5, 2019

Opus 2019-059: Nothing?

It has been pointed out but bears repeating.  Not only could the Mueller team find nothing on Trump, they could find nothing on any of his family.  The team and the media tried to drag down his daughter, son and son in law.  What did they get?  Nothing.

What does that say about the kind of example this man set for his children?  When you have all of the resources of the United States government and all of the hatred of the media, when you have an unlimited budget and control the propaganda organs, when you are filled with righteous indignation that this man had the gall to win an election and you still can’t find anything, what does that say about the man and how he raised his children?

Call him crude.  Call him uncouth.  Call him what you want.  I will call him, Mr. President.

homo unius libri

Thursday, April 4, 2019

Opus 2019-058: Headlines: Time for Swords not Cheeks

The report is out and the conclusion is that there was no collusion.  The meme we keep hearing is a big nothingburger.  The strange thing to me is that even if there was “collusion”, I read that there is no such crime.

The big point of the two year investigation is not so much that President Trump was colluding but that the MSM, DOJ, FBI and CIA were working with the Democratic party in trying to negate a lawful electing and remove the president.  They were trying for a coup and fell on their face.  The big question is where do we go from here.

The criminals and their allies are calling for us to move on and forget it, after all it was yesterday’s news.  That would go along with the Christian concept of turning the other cheek.  After all. if we just focus on the negative how can we move forward?  It is also misguided.  It is time for Donald Trump to move from turning the other cheek to bearing the government sword against evil.  I don’t think he needs to go on the attack for personal revenge but because he is responsible to the Constitution and the citizens of the United States.  He needs to protect us from the coercion of leftist tyranny. 

The Biblical basis is found in Romans 13.  Thus we have,
(Romans 13:1-4 KJV)  Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.  Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.  For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same:  For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.
As an individual Trump should forgive.  As President he needs to pick up the sword and “execute wrath upon him that doeth evil”.

It is a clear evil that Flynn and Manafort are sitting in custody while Hillary and Comey are living the high life.  If we are going to see good prevail we must charge the government with rooting out the evil.

Let the trials begin.

homo unius libri

Opus 2019-057: Ode to Old: Scarlet Pimpernel

As I was enjoying the wild flowers this week I was trying to name the colors.  There was one that I was trying to put a name on and the term Scarlet Pimpernel came to mind?  Scarlet Pimpernel?  Where did that come from?  As I thought about it I could remember that several times in my life I could have expounded on the term.  I would then forget it and next time I needed it, look it up again.  Where did the memory go?

I find there is a growing list of terms and body of knowledge that I don’t seem to think is worth remembering.  What are the words to “I’m a little teapot”?  Since I have a granddaughter it might be something I put back in my memory box.  I still know my social security number but there are very few telephone numbers I bother retaining.  Certain streets in cities I lived in never made it into my daily recall.

“Thanks for the Memories” should become the theme song for all us elderly.  So far I am good with it.  The difficult time will be when  I can’t remember that I ever knew it.  Of course if I don’t remember that I forgot then I won’t know the difference.

I hope I haven’t said all this before.

homo unius libri

Wednesday, April 3, 2019

Opus 2019-056: Wildflower Watch: Peak Season

The bluebonnets are still going strong.  They appeared almost overnight a few weeks ago and are still poking up their blooms in unexpected places.

Yellow stuff is everywhere.  Last year I tried to identify them but they all look like some kind of daisy and I can’t figure out if the differences are significant or not.  They tend to be the first up and the last to go away.

Indian paint brush has taken a leap.  They were clustered in front of one house but yesterday I noticed that a couple had come up around the corner.

There are some whites, pinks and purples mixed in.

It is a beautiful time to take a walk in Texas even if you don’t know all the names.

homo unius libri

Monday, April 1, 2019

Opus 2019-055: New Terms: April Fools’ Year

I think there is value in April Fools’ Day.  It serves as a wake up call. 

It reminds us that we need to take most of what we hear with a grain of salt.  I don’t know if salt is currently on the bad list or the good list but it is necessary when it comes to reading the news from any source.  Perhaps we should raise Mary Poppins ante of a spoonful of sugar and go with salt.  I can remember years when I was not paying attention on April first and would get sucked in by certain people.  A bit of harmless embarrassment is good for us because it wakes us up to the woke. 

It also reminds us that we need to develop a sense of humor.  It amazes me how many people have a very narrow definition of humor.  I have learned that I should not joke around most women.  They say things like “Sarcasm is the lowest form of humor”.  Imagine that.  If I had only known.  I will admit that “pull my finger” is not high brow but in the right context and with the right timing it rolls the donuts off the plate.  It always amazed me when kids at school would look shocked when they realized I was making fun of myself. 

I think we need to change things a little bit.  We need to make it April Fools’ Year because the left wing media is showing no sign of slowing down in their advocacy for the destruction of our Republic.

Hang in there, the best is yet to come.  And it doesn’t matter how you define “best”.

homo unius libri

Saturday, March 30, 2019

Opus 2019-054: Teflon Award: First Award

The Teflon is an award given in recognition of being able to break the law and have no significant consequences for it.  I think the term was first used of Ronald Reagan when the Deep State was trying to bring him down.  Somehow they never applied the term to the many Democrats who literally got away with murder.  I may forget all about it in a few days, you know how blogging goes, but I am thinking of a series of awards for people who thumb there noses at us members of the unwashed masses and then flick the boogers at us.

While this award does not automatically rule out Republicans, in our current climate they don’t even come close in quality or frequency.  Perhaps we should have the equivalent of a participation trophy for them.  Honestly, they are not in the same league.

I am going to start off with a Teflon Award for Jussie Smollett.  To be honest I had never heard of the guy before he decided his career needed a boost.  He put it all together.  He is a celebrity, black, homosexual and a raging liberal.  He put together the perfect scam of using them all, breaking numerous laws, spitting in the face of decent people everywhere of all races, sexual orientations and political position then walking free.  Awesome, dude. 

Once again we see that rules and laws are just for us peasants, not for the social nobility.  As George Orwell said so well in Animal Farm, “All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.”  And no, I am not equating animals with liberals, blacks, homosexuals or celebrities.  I would not want to insult the animals.

homo unius libri

Opus 2019-053: Election 2020: Social Dementia

The text on the meme poster was, “You can’t fix stupid, but you can vote it out.”  I am beginning to wonder if the stupid isn’t on this side of the ballot box.  These “stupid” people keep getting reelected and passed over by the prosecutors.  Who are we calling stupid?  Americans tend to have a form of social dementia.  We can’t seem to remember what happened yesterday.  How many politicians have you written off and later voted for?  How many products have you realized were useless but keep buy them?  How many TV programs and ‘news” outlets have you cussed at, yet still watch?  There are many things we could change overnight if we would get serious.

I think we need to understand that they are not stupid.  They know what they want.  They know how to get it.  They continue to rake in the millions of dollars.  They continue to tell us how to live.  They know how to get your vote.  They know you don’t want to make the hard choices.

Also understand they are not stupid.  They are evil.  All you need to do is look at the things the Democrats and RINOs are pushing and compare it to the values your grandparents have and you will see what a great job of brainwashing they have done on a lazy, naive, trusting population.  You have probably heard someone say that what is accepted on TV and in the movies today would have not needed to be banned 40 years ago.  They would have been rejected by the population.  Now we yawn and ask for more.  The same applies to our political leaders.

Vote the suckers out.

homo unius libri

Friday, March 29, 2019

Opus 2019-052: Baby Talk: Why So Bright?

We used to ask ourselves why our children were so smart.  Was it heredity or environment?  Now we are forced to move it ahead a generation.  Why is my granddaughter so smart? 

Once you get past the subjective humor of the statement you need to actually ask yourself what makes the difference in children.  As we go out we are more tuned in to watching babies and children and we notice that there are a large number of them that seem to have already tuned out of the learning process.  I remember when I used to arrive at school and walk past children sitting, leaning against the wall and staring at nothing.  In the town I used to be a teacher we had at least seven libraries.  This was a town of about 130,000 people.  In addition to that there were thrift stores that sold books for almost nothing.  And they would sit and stare.  Their brains were already shutting down.

Even allowing for parental exaggeration, our kids were bright.  I can already see it in my granddaughter.  I think one contributor is the constant stimulation of adults.  It was a rare event when an adult was not interacting with the child.  Sometimes she would have three adults giving her attention.  I don’t mean bribing her and giving her everything she wanted.  I mean talking to her, playing games, repeating words, showing her the bumps on the walls and the top of the doors. 

I have seen so many children given a bottle and propped up in a bed.  They are dumped in a play pen and allowed to cry for hours.  Over time I think a lot of bright children start to slow down and dim their potential.

Raising children is a lot of work and so many today are born into homes where the mothers (and probably the fathers) need to spend time tweeting and posting, primping and buffing and deciding whether they look good in the blue or the pink.

Bless the children.

homo unius libri

Opus 2019-051: More Macho Please

We hear a lot of criticism of the macho man.  The loner of the westerns has his problems.  There is a needed emphasis on working together but there is one character trait of the John Wayne role that we need more of:  Sacrifice for the good of the whole.

The loner may go his own way.  He may walk a path that is not for the masses.  He also is willing to stand up for what he believes is right.  The cost is not the issue.  The point is honor and standing for the good.  He is willing to die on principle even if he is the only casualty.

We need more of that.  We cannot wait for group think to come around.  The masses are swayed by the indoctrination of the public schools and the mass media.  They are told what to think and that is necessary since they were never allowed to think.  Our country, our world, needs more men and women who are willing to stand tall.  They may be knocked down but it is the only way that the brainwashed can be awakened instead of being woke.

One person standing up may not turn the tide.  At least it will feel like it didn’t matter to the one standing alone.  It will always feel lonely but if enough individuals take the risk be will see America becoming what it is meant to be.  It could be a minor issue like not sitting in the no parking zone with your engine idling.  It may be refusing to push a button that will end in many deaths.  I cannot stand up for you and you cannot take my place but together we can make a difference.

homo unius libri

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Opus 2019-050: Shocker

Every day brings surprises in the real world.  Who would have ever thought that the day would come when Nancy Pelosi seemed like the voice of reason?  Yes, I know she is a left wing extremist who thinks she knows what is best for the unwashed masses.  I am not sure there is any issue in our culture I would agree with her on.

Compared to the new wave of Democrats she is the voice of reason.  Scary, but true.

homo unius libri

Opus 2019-049: Maui, Texas

It was an awesome sunrise in Texas today, at least from my perch.

First it goes from black to gray and then you begin to get the gray morphing slowly into pink.  Isolated clouds will start reflecting the gold of the still hidden sun while the upper reaches go from black to navy blue to a dark sky blue.  The portions of clear air between clouds will move from pink to what I think of as aquamarine and turquoise. 

It reminds me of the mornings in Maui when I would rise in the dark, prepare my coffee, grab my guitar, Bible and lawn chair and head for the beach to watch the same spectacle.  I guess you could say this is a Maui, Texas, hill country kind of morning.

When I stood up and stepped closer to the window for a broader view I realized that my framed portion of the sky what the central point of the action.  I guess God knew I needed a reminder.

I hope you get a chance to look out a window today.

homo unius libri

Monday, March 25, 2019

Opus 2019-048: Election 2020: Primary Elections Are the Key

One of Nancy Pelosi’s famous lines was, “We need to pass the bill so we can find out what is in the bill.”  We all laughed.  We thought she was trying to push the legislation.  Actually it is worse than that:  She was stating the standard operating procedure (SOP) of our elected officials.  With the passing of the recent spending bill it is obvious that the Republicans at least never read a bill until after it is passed and then they only read it to find out what loopholes they can use for their own personal benefit.  We see this pattern over and over again.

Is there any way that we can cut the pork and earmarks out of the legislative process?  There is but I am not sure the voting public has the drive or attention span needed to produce results.  We need to keep a record of what our elected officials do and when it is time to vote try to get rid of the ones that don’t measure up.  We also need to be willing to give up our pet projects for the good of the country.  Keep in mind that one man’s bacon is another man’s pork.

It also involves getting more involved in the primary process.  California has gutted their elections with open primaries and voter registration.  Those of us that have not been overwhelmed by the one party state need to get involved before the party’s candidate is selected.  In many areas the winner of the primary is a done deal in the general election in both parties.

So can you name your representatives?  I know my state senator and congressman.  I need to learn my state assembly member.  I then need to find out how they have voted on bills I think are key to the survival of the Republic.  If I am successful I will wax more eloquent.  If I bog down you won’t hear about it again.

homo unius libri

Saturday, March 23, 2019

Opus 2019-047: New Terms: Trumpophobia

I doubt if I am the first to come up with this.  We have things like Trump Derangement Syndrome.  I am sure there are many ways to describe the lack of thought process on the left.  I would suggest Trumpophobia.

It can be handy in conversations.  The mindless masses like to trot out homophobic, islamophobic and any other phobic that will put us in our places.  Maybe we can return the complement by simply calling them trumpophobic when they are being dense.

homo unius libri

Friday, March 22, 2019

Opus 2019-046: Baby Talk: Baby Me

Watching the baby has helped me understand the elites who want to take care of us.

The baby needs constant supervision because it doesn’t know what will hurt it.  There are sharp corners and poisons all around the child and it doesn’t know it.  A good parent looks out for the infant and guides its actions.  Dangers are removed.  Threats are neutralized.  And the baby never knows.

Of course if you protect the child too much it will never learn about the law of gravity.  He will never learn the frustration of failure that stimulates trying again.  He will think that everything is easy.  He will live in a bubble and never learn to think.  That is the kind of parent that socialism provides.

Pain is a good teacher but some need more supervision than others.  There are limits that are important but they should be designed to be removed as the child progresses.  Training wheels are good on a child’s first bicycle but if they are never removed the child will never know the freedom a bicycle provides.  It also adds the risk of riding in traffic surrounded by cars but that is part of the price of liberty.  If you never take the plug guards out of the receptacle the child will never be able to access the miracle of electricity. 

Socialism at its best wants to remove the chance of pain.  At its worst it is just a desire to control that grows out of a sense of superiority.

Babies can be great teachers.  We need to be better ones.

homo unius libri

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Opus 2019-045: Stealth Citizens

Are there any pockets of livability in Venezuela?  Of course I mean outside of the elite socialists running the country for the good of the people.  Two things socialist countries have in common.  They all have the masses of people living in poverty.  They are equal and poor.  At the top of the pile you have the anointed leaders who are living in luxury.  Venezuela is in lock step with that model.

Are there any quiet little groups outside the elites that have managed to have enough to eat?  Are there people that keep off the radar, living in seclusion, who have a stable life in the midst of chaos?  If there are I would like to know how they did it.

I  wonder because it looks to me like the progressives in education, government and the media have managed to brainwash a sizable portion of the young people approaching voting age.  With the fascist executives of the social media giants doing everything they can to control information there is little hope for the masses.  More and more of the young generation are being seduced by the siren call of socialism.  They think that redistribution of income and equality across the board will raise everyone’s boat to a comfortable level.  They think that you grow wealthy by printing more money.

I use “fascist” advisably.  Fascism is not the same as communism.  One of the things that is distinctive about fascism is that the government gets in bed with big business instead of destroying it.  Another word for it is crony capitalism.  Fascist dictators like Mussolini convinced the rich and powerful that if they would cooperate then they would rule.  Life at the top was good.

I also use “dictator” advisably.  What most people don’t understand it that dictators take power through due process.  They are elected by the masses or appointed by the elites.  They do not stage a military coup or a bloody revolution.  Often they use coercion and violence to make people insecure enough to vote for a strong man but in reality the population makes that decision.

I don’t know what the key is.  I don’t think it involves living totally off the grid.  Eventually you have to come to town for coffee and duct tape.  Then they get you.  I will keep looking and hoping that I am just being a cynic.

homo unius libri

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Opus 2019-044: Thanks Thoughts: The Self Made Man

As I was being thankful this morning it crossed my mind again how much has been prepared for me by the hands of others.  In the context of history I am living in unequaled luxury and wealth.  That is because of thousands, if not millions, of people who have done their part as they work to earn their daily bread.  I asked myself, “How many things that you can see could you have made yourself?”  At first the answer was, “None.”  I could not have even painted the walls as well as they are painted, let alone make the paint or brush.

I finally found something I could have made:  A coaster.  It would have been made of a chip of wood or a chunk of rock I ground down to semi-flatness.  It would not have been square or round.  It would not have a nice decoration on it.  An archeologist would wonder what it was but it would be a place where I could put my coffee cup in the morning.  Now all I have to do is figure out how to make a cup that will hold hot coffee and grow the coffee bushes after I figure out how to get clean water.

Thank you to all the hands that went into making my life good.  I thank the God who places each of us in our place.  I hope I have done my part in the Rube Goldberg plan of life.

homo unius libri

Monday, March 18, 2019

Opus 2019-043: Firsts: Pandora

By now the bar for new music should be so high that very few new compositions are ever heard by the general population.  There would not be time to waste on most of it.  It is kind of like being on a diet with a limited number of calories in a day.  You are not going to waste your time eating unleavened bread when you have pizza available.

I had forgotten how much I have forgotten.  Recently my children got me going on Pandora.  Pandora is a music ap that lets you pick the type of music you want and tailors its selections to your preferences.  It has been an eye opener.  I started listening to oldies and I was shocked at how many great songs there were in the music libraries.  Song after song that I had not heard in twenty years touched my ears and a nerve at the same time. 

Then I tried a thread with hymns and found out how many recordings have been made by different genres of musicians and it was surprising how many of them were worth listening to.  I went to the topic of Praise Music and again, the good stuff keeps flowing. 

Why is it then that when I turn on the radio I get nothing but drivel?  Why is it when I go to church I get nothing but monotonous sap that was written by people with a limited grasp of theology and knew three chords on a guitar?  It is like going to Flemings and choosing to eat the saltines I brought with me.  I think the congregation puts up with it because it allows people to spend time on their phones without missing out on anything.

To those leading the “worship teams” of the world, get an I-Pad and download Pandora.  You might be shocked out of writing your next song as you bask in the geniuses of the past.

homo unius libri

Sunday, March 17, 2019

Opus 2019-042: Baby Talk: A Future Progressive

I continue to see a lot of similarities between the actions of my infant granddaughter and your typical liberal.

Infants have their physical ability and mental perception very much entwined.  I often wonder how much of the developing coordination is a problem of muscle development and how much is limited mental understanding.  As I watch my granddaughter I am struck by how many simple things she cannot seem to get done.  I was watching her try to unfold a paper she removed from my pocket.  She kept coming back to it but she never found success.  At one point she had the two parts divided in two hands.  All she needed to do was pull.  Instead she let go.  The difference between her infant mind and a liberal is that she learns from what she observes.  I expect that in a few weeks or months she will be able to do this and move on to other tasks.  Liberals keep being confronted by simple facts and can’t seem to grasp what they mean.

At this stage our baby is not able to put anything back.  You  may have noticed this.  In adolescents it is demonstrated by the inability to clean up their room.  Grown men are often incapable of picking up their sox.  My daughter spends much of her time picking all the little parts up and putting them in bens and buckets.  In my early morning grandpa times I do the same thing.  The baby is quite capable when it comes to removing items but putting something in a container is beyond her.  Babies and liberals take but they cannot give.  They think there will always be someone to pick up after them, put money in their bank account for them, go to work for them, pay the utilities for them, etc.  Life is a never ending series of someone else being the adult.

Babies move it until it breaks.  This morning the focus was a mechanical scale I have in a corner.  The baby likes to climb up on it.  Today she discovered it would rock and when it does it makes a noise.  I was entertained by a baby rocking itself for an extended period of time.  Alas, like the typical liberal, she never rocked herself to sleep.  She seemed determined to keep it hitting the floor until something broke.  In this case the scale was stronger than she.  I used to watch this in middle school when a young man would rock back and forth on their desk until the welds would finally give up and the legs would collapse. 

I am confident that my granddaughter will not grow up to be a liberal.  The big question we must all face is, “Will there be enough non-liberals in the future to pick up after the babies that never grow up?”

homo unius libri

Saturday, March 16, 2019

Opus 2019-041: New Laws: Putting the Rest Back in Restroom

I have found a new set of government regulations that we need to keep people secure in their personal lives.  We must establish some guidelines on public restrooms.  As I get older this is getting to be a bigger problem.  I am not referring to wondering which door to go through.  It is the fixtures that are messing with my mind.

I find myself having anxiety attacks because of all the variety I face.  Your first question is, “Will this flush itself?”  Even if it looks like it will, the wait for confirmation can be unsettling.  How long should I have to wait for the “whooosh”?  I would suggest a large federal grant to find the perfect pause for flushing.

Then there is the question of washing your hands.  Will it be sensor controlled or require active participation.  The sink it easy:  If there are no handles it is automatic.  What gets me is the soap dispenser.  Do I press a button or a lever?  Is the lever on the top, bottom or front?  Is it totally automatic?  Then you have the towel question.  Lever or sensor?  Some sort of standard is needed.  Maybe automatic could be green and manual red.  Perhaps we could have a requirement that everything be either automatic or manual and make a mandatory notice be posted at each entrance. 

The current situation makes me uneasy.  I need assurance and a safe space to do my business.

homo unius libri

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Opus 2019-040: Baby Talk: Learning by Rote

How many times does a baby have to drop something before it begins to understand the law of gravity.  I am watching my granddaughter as she plays with the various “toys” we have given her.  Right now her favorites are some measuring cups and spoons.  They are easy to grab and great for chewing.  I know that doesn’t make your day but watching her wave them around and pound on things is one of those great moments in life for an old man.

She looks so puzzled when she lets go and they fall to the ground.  You may have experienced the infant in a high chair that repeatedly drops something over the side and looks down wondering where it went.  You pick it up and return it and moments later it hits the ground again.  After a while it becomes a game and what is learned is manipulation of adults not the pull of gravity.  We try to draw a line between accidentally dropping and deliberately letting go.  Even a baby needs to learn cause and effect.  Even more important they need to learn that other animate objects are not there to fetch for them.

It is cute now.  It will not be cute when she gets to college age.  She has a lot of learning to do.  After gravity will come picking up sox and making a bed.

homo unius libri

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Opus 2019-039: What Is Best for America

I just had some strong words for Venezuela.  The same goes for us here in the United States.  Various people have been quoted making the point that liberty must be reestablished in each generation.  At present we are coasting on the blood, sweat and tears of previous generations.  They built up a lot of equity and the current population is busy enjoying the fruit of their sacrifice. 

Americans are going to need to step up to the plate and be ready to take one for the team.  Part of that is a matter of self policing instead of expecting the government to regulate us.  When we cross the line with selfish behavior because we can get away with it we are pounding nails into our own coffin.  When we violate commonly understood standards of behavior because we don’t believe we will be caught we are on a slippery slope.  When we hire a lawyer to get out of paying for our violations when we get caught we are part of the problem. 

There comes a tipping point in our culture where it is too late to recover.  We are reaching that point.  It comes when there are so many people on the government dole that they can vote themselves everything they want.  Being on the dole includes working for the government.  It is not just limited to people on different forms of welfare or entitlement programs.  The only way to recover is for enough individuals to make the decision that they will be part of the solution even if they are the only one.  It is like the soldier that grabs the live grenade and smothers it with his body to protect his comrades.  All would die if one was not willing to pay the price.

Will America go the way of Venezuela?  Take a look at the feces covered streets of San Francisco.  Look at the homeless wastes of Los Angeles.  Recently I saw tent cities growing in the underpasses of Austin.  Rat souffle is just around the corner.

We won’t recover if we wait for the next guy.

homo unius libri

Opus 2019-038: Headlines: What Is Best for Venezuela

For what it is worth I think we should stay out of Venezuela.  We should not even think of sending any kind of military presence even if we call it “advisors”.

My reasoning?  I think there is truth in the saying “people get the government they deserve”.  By that I don’t say that the people of Venezuela don’t deserve better.  What I mean in this case is that they need to step up to the plate and make it happen themselves.  They need to take the risks, become martyrs if necessary and shed their own blood.  That is the only way it will be meaningful.  It is like welfare.  Outside help is a very warm and fuzzy idea but the destruction of doing people’s job for them is tragic.  In America we have destroyed the black community with welfare.  The liberals and Rino elites are working hard to do the same for the Latino community and are making progress among whites.  In a world connected by the internet there is no excuse for pockets of poverty based on location.  If the government would stop blocking real progress with food stamps, subsidized housing, minimum wage laws, regulations and all the other barriers to free enterprise then some entrepreneur would start up a business in the back woods of West Virginia and put people to work developing the skills to get ahead in the world.

How does that relate to Venezuela?  Could American troops defeat the local troops?  I have no doubt they could but in the process we would be forced to set up an American stooge to lead.  He would not be accepted and you would have some left wing wacko gather support and we are back to square one.  If the people of a country do not have the intestinal fortitude to hammer out their own freedoms they will not be able to keep them.  Picture an industry where the government subsidizes the jobs.  When reality hits the company goes out of business and everyone is back on the street.  Venezuela has gone back on the street.

Venezuela might want to be free.  They might also only want a painless form of socialism.  By that I mean they want security and peace with a freezer full of ready meals and a cooler full of beer.  To which I am reminded of a quote attributed to Benjamin Franklin about how some people will give up their liberty for security and end up with neither.

Good luck to Venezuela.  There may be some ways we can help but the job of liberty is for them to apply for with their own blood, sweat and tears.

homo unius libri

Monday, March 11, 2019

Opus 2019-037: Headlines: Anti-Semitic Jews

The headline about an anti-Israel activist didn’t stir much focus, but when I saw the picture that accompanied it I felt some cognitive dissonance.  You can check out the picture at the Free Beacon.  The strangeness came when I noticed that the anti-Jewish hater was surrounded by a group of people dressed as Jewish leaders.  From the beards and prayer shawls I would even say they were Orthodox Jews.  This is like a group of cattle ranchers showing up for a photo op with Cory Booker when he is making his policy statements against eating meat. 

I am one of the those people who still believe that the Jews are God’s Chosen People.  They are a blessed race in many ways.  If you look at a list of Nobel Prize winners you will find the Jewish people to be over represented.  They are brilliant.  They are clever.  They are often successful.  They also seem to be a bit naive.  How do a bunch of Jewish leaders in the conservative wing of the faith find themselves in a picture endorsing someone who hates Jews?

They are a cursed race in many ways.  Throughout history they have been persecuted from the times they were expelled from Rome during the Empire to the latest nonsense from Democratic politicians.  We have words like pogrom and Holocaust that are a part of our vocabulary because of the persecution and murder of Jews.  We see anti-Semitism on the rise again.  It is true we will never forget but I don’t think this is what the phrase was designed to encourage.

homo unius libri

Friday, March 8, 2019

Opus 2019-36: Baby Talk: Learning by Example

It is amazing how much of a baby’s behavior is learned by observation.

My granddaughter has begun hugging her stuffed animals and the one she hugs the most is the one closest to human proportions, a Teddy bear.  She has handled them and tried to eat them but as I watch her this morning at 5:30 A.M., she is definitely hugging.

I am glad to see that because it tells me she is beginning to put together what is means when we hug her all the time.  And she is learning to pass it on.  She has been laying her head on us as a sign of affection but I don’t thing it will be long until she gets the arms in place. 

We have watched her mimic our clapping and waving.  I don’t think she knows why she is doing them but she does them on cue.  She also has the cutest way of shaking her head.  It won’t be so cute when she realizes what it means and begins to use it to communicate.

It is sobering to realize how much the little ones watch us and learn from us for good or evil.  I don’t think it ever stops.  I don’t think it is limited to our children.  I am challenged to keep trying to get my act together so that people I care about will be encouraged to get theirs into shape.  As a side benefit there will also be those whom we don’t notice.

Someone is watching you.  Will it make them a better person?

homo unius libri

Thursday, March 7, 2019

Opus 2019-035: A Step Toward One World

In The Sound of Music one of the songs goes, “How do you solve a problem like Maria?”  In an attempt to steal the talent I would change the words today to “How do you solve the problem Ihlan Omar?”  For people of principle she is a gift that goes on giving.  It is hard for Americans who don’t understand tribal hatred to look at a photogenic young woman with a big smile and process all the evil that flows from her mouth.

Welcome to the world America.  Whether you consider yourself Christian or not you have been raised in a culture that embraces forgiveness and traces its thinking back to such statements as “turn the other cheek” and “judge not”.  Most of the world thinks we are crazy to think that.  We are, in the world’s terms.  The world is still rooted in tribal group-think.  The left, which includes most Democrats, have been pushed this way with all the group-think and identity politics espoused by those who want to bring down America.

Under Christian influenced, American thinking your are responsible as an individual for what you do, and with due process you are to be treated as an individual under the law.  Under the tolerance of the progressives you are a part of a group and thus you are guilty or innocent based on the elite leadership’s judgement of your category.  That is where we get this brain-numbing nonsense that only white people can be racist and that the reason more blacks are arrested is a result of that racism. 

My concern is that the masses will not wake up to the poison that is festering in the Democratic Party.

(After I wrote this I found a headline that sounds like a great mind running in a similar channel.  It is found at American Greatness.  I did not read it to find how similar the text is.)

homo unius libri

Monday, March 4, 2019

Opus 2019-034: Baby Talk: The “N” Word

Nobody wants to be accused of being negative so everyone is afraid to say, “No.”  It is still one of the most important words an infant can learn.

As my granddaughter roams our house we have tried to make it a safe space.  Chemicals have been moved, under the sink is empty.  Sockets have been plugged.  Glass table covers have been relocated.  Doors are shut.  In spite of that there are still some things that require a “no”. 

Trash cans are necessary.  Our home has too many books to move.  Electric chords.  Eyeglasses on someone’s face.  Bugs that might have found a way inside.  It is really a pretty short list but we try to enforce it.  To be serious much of the reason is not that we could not hide things.  It is also necessary for the child to learn limits and self control.  If she does not learn it now, she may never grasp it.

If you want to look at a short list of root causes for the problems in our country you will find this on the list.  Parents have not wanted to be the bad guy.  In the game of good-cop/bad-cop no one wants the negative role.  It is much easier to let it go, this time.  What you have are a bunch of spineless snowflakes who think they are entitled.

So learn to use the N word.  Tell someone you love them, tell them “No”.  It could change someone’s life.  It could change our society.  It is one of those long term investments that keeps on giving.

homo unius libri

Sunday, March 3, 2019

Opus 2019-033: Immortal Quotes: On Cursing the Darkness

Don’t curse the flashlight when the problem is the batteries.

If you follow any of the prepper sites you find a lot of excitement about tactical flashlights, whatever those are.  There is talk of lumens that will blind attackers and how you always need to have a flashlight on you.  I don’t know about you but I need a flashlight for power outages and looking into corners a lot more than I need to stop Bruce Lee wannabes with a powerful surge of lumens.  I sometimes find myself thinking of getting a new flashlight.

What I actually need to do is change the batteries. 

If you are like me you have a lot of old flashlights around the house.  They either don’t work at all or they are very dim and flicker.  Sometimes the unit has been dropped once too often or it has batteries that have leaked.  I have had to bend connections and once even found that by switching the heads on two Maglites they both started to work properly.  Usually, however, it is just a need to change the batteries.  I tried it recently.  In each case the flashlight came to life and said, “Use me.” 

You may have heard the old saying about lighting a candle instead of cursing the darkness.  Maybe if the sages were writing such things today it would be flashlights and batteries.

homo unius libri

Thursday, February 28, 2019

Opus 2019-032: Flea Market vs Supermarket

I want to thank Powerline for linking to a decent article on Politico about the sudden ending of the meeting between Trump and Kim.  I gave up on Politico soon after it opened because it began to sound more and more like another voice of the left.  And who needs another voice less?  The only reason I went to check it out was because Scott Johnson said it was written by his daughter.  It seemed well balanced which I am generally used on Powerline but not in Politico.

Most of the media tries to make everything Trump does a chance to show how superior they are instead of actually reporting what is happening.  One of the things I like about Trump is that he usually knows what he wants and has an idea of how to get it.  He does not generally get stampeded by the Fake News Network into melting down so they won’t say mean things about him.  He knows that no matter what he does, they will say mean things.  That is their role in life.

The key quote I read a couple of times is “Sometimes you need to just walk away.”  We, as Americans are used to shopping in stores where the price is displayed and that is the price.  You can ask if they have an AAA discount but even that is predetermined.  Trump understands that politics is more like a flea market, swap meet or Middle Eastern bazaar.  The prices are just there to be a starting point.  Part of the dance is to walk away.  Most of us are very uncomfortable with that.  Trump is in his element and we should be glad he is.

So the meeting ended early.  So, big deal.  Trump understands.  Kim understands.  The media is confused, but that is par for the course.  Tomorrow is another day and another deal.

homo unius libri

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Opus 2019-031: Baby Talk: Balance

My granddaughter is visiting from half way around the world and it is changing mine for a few weeks.  Of course my daughter came with her and I am enjoying time with her but those quiet breakfasts are much different with an infant along.

I find that my priorities are a bit different at this point.  It is great to pontificate on the latest lame excuse for Trump Derangement Syndrom but it is more important to crawl around on the floor.  Blogging is often like the old guy who came over to us as a fast food place and began to tell us “his story”.  It went on and on.  We were polite and listened.  He knew he was talking a long time because at one point he wondered if his wife had got tired of waiting and if he would need to walk home. 

The great thing about the internet is we can write what ever we want and not feel like we are imposing on anyone.  On the internet, relief if just a click away.  That is one reason why I get confused by the idea of cyber bullying.  And if I miss what you have to say it will be there next week unless one of the media censors blokes you.

My granddaughter might be here in a week but she will be a totally different person.  She is on the verge of walking.  We are hoping she will hold off until she gets home with her dad but time waits for no toddler.

homo unius libri

Saturday, February 16, 2019

Opus 2019-030: Election 2020: Get Your Lists Started

Paul Mirengoff of Power Line gives a quick run down of how the Senate voted on the recent funding bill.  I find it very helpful to find out who is willing to stand on principle.  Only 11 Republicans voted against it.  I was glad to see that Ted Cruz was on the short list but disappointed that John Cornyn voted “yes”.  Those are my two senators.  You might check and see if either of yours made the cut.

I don’t begin to claim to be an expert on legislation but the list of obviously unacceptable provisions included in the bill keeps growing.  I don’t really expect every legislator to read every line of every bill but they have staff that can do it and give them a summary.  Were they all on vacation? 

2020 is coming.  We need to begin watching how people vote now.  We need to begin a list of what we agree on and what we don’t.  I have yet to see Cruz oppose what I think is right.  He may have done so but I haven’t noticed.  I am seeing that Cornyn is not always present in the fight to save America.  I need to remember that in the primaries that are to come.  In the general election Cornyn will almost certainly be better than what the Democrats have to offer but there might be some options in the primary. 

Start watching now so that you will be ready in primary season.  Your state will have different options and you will have different issues.  If you live in Nancy Pelosi’s district then you have my sympathy.

homo unius libri

Friday, February 15, 2019

Opus 2019-029: The Party of Freedom

I have often felt like complaining about how the Republicans can’t stick together and get anything done.  The left tends to maintain discipline.  If the leadership decides the vote should be “no” then the rank and file vote “no”.  It doesn’t matter if it is right or wrong.  It doesn’t matter what they promised or campaigned on, party unity is a priority.  I was impressed and found myself wishing that conservatives working together was not like herding cats.

The recent choir directing by Nancy Pelosi at the State of the Union is making me rethink that a little.  As I watched people who claimed to be Americans sitting unresponsive to all the good news about what has been happening I got a little repulsed by party loyalty.  Maybe one of the strengths of the Republicans is that we have some people who insist on thinking for themselves.  Sure we have our share of elitists and kiss ups but we also have those who stand up for what is right.  It shows we are the party of freedom.

homo unius libri

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Opus 2019-028: Shame Factor

Should people feel any shame when they use an EBT card or apply for disabled veteran license plates?  The answer is easy:  Yes and no.

A little bit of shame or embarrassment can go a long way to controlling abuse of programs that should be helping those in genuine need.  Why do I refrain from taking the last slice of pizza?  Because my friends will laugh at me and mock me.  It works to make me a healthier person even if I am not really a better person.  If I were close to starving and someone offered me the left over pizza I wouldn’t even hesitate. 

Do you really need the government to take care of you?  Some may be there.  I have been close a few times but either the church or my family have been there for me.  Why were they there for me?  Because they knew me and my need.  Even more because they knew I deserved a bit of help, and because they knew all those things they could tailor there “welfare programs” to make sure that I was strengthened and not destroyed.

If you are paying attention you will recognize that most government programs tend to destroy the people they are supposed to help.  People get used to getting something for nothing.  Their motivation is sapped.  Their good pride is ground up.  They become expectant instead of energized. 

When I was teaching I had to face the annual end of my welfare season.  It came when school started.  I had to go back to work.  Believe me that is hard after kicking back for three months.  If it was hard for me with my well developed sense of responsibility and a record of a solid work ethic, how hard must it be for someone who has had the government hand out checks with no accountability all their lives?

Did I feel a bit of shame when I had to move into my parents home with a pregnant wife?  You bet I did.  I also knew that if I didn’t get my act together I would be out on the street after a time.  It was a great motivator.  Maybe our dependent classes need a dose of that motivation.

It can be done humanely but it can’t be done painlessly.  It must be done.

homo unius libri

Saturday, February 9, 2019

Opus 2019-027: New Seating Chart Needed

I think we need to change the way in which people are arranged for televised speeches.  Most of what the president had to say was old news to those of us who have been listening.  For people sheltered by the liberal press it may have been new but all he did up until the last few minutes was repeated what he has been saying for two years. 

Maybe he got through to some this time.

The reason we need to change the seating is that I get tired of watching the clown show going on behind the president as he speaks.  I had a hard time paying attention to Donald Trump while Nancy Pelosi was acting like a cross between a choir director and a paper monitor.  She was constantly giving hand motions to the Democrat choir.  If you have ever been in a choir you recognize the signal for stand and sit as well as for more volume and cut.  As well as being immature it showed a lack of courtesy and class.  I guess that is another way of saying, “She was acting like a Democrat.”

I wonder if Democrats at home were following those signals.  It would have been fun to sit outside their window and listen to them clapping at certain times.  And I can just hear a  little voice saying, “Why are we standing, Mommy?”

We need a screen behind the president when he speaks.  That way the vice president can pick his nose if he needs to and the speaker can clean her teeth.  Maybe a screen with a big picture of the two looking attentive, perhaps photo shopped from when they were younger.  You might even be able to make it look real by having them make a 20 second loop.  Actually we might need to go for 10 second because of the attention spans we are dealing with.

If rock stars can lip sync their lyrics you would think politicians could fake being polite.

homo unius libri