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|My Powerful Memory
By John R. Taylor
Once again my cousins have questioned my memory. Because they have puny
memories they are awed by my great recollection. I guess I should say
that they are ‘recall challenged”, not possessors of puny memories; you
know, political correctness and everything. But they do have puny
memories. After much brilliant debate on my part I have finally got them
to concede that I do have a superior memory. In fact, they now say my
memory is so mighty that I can actually remember things which did not
even happen. It’s about time they came around.
|Now We Know
By John R. Taylor
The other day Cynthia Tucker wrote a column
in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution titled “Evolution a vital study;
that’s a fact.” It was not really any different than hundreds of others
that are churned out everyday. Her main points are that Georgia’s
children will stay in the “education cellar” if a disclaimer sticker is
placed on text books which teach evolution and that many scientific
theories are accepted as implicit facts. She gives gravity as an
As is typical of such works, her
implications are more insulting and ridiculous than what she actually
writes. Although she stops short of calling “creationists” and “biblical
literalists” ignorant, stupid, uneducated and without intellectual
merit, the implication is unmistakable. While not saying it, her view
that evolution is the one and only scientific theory which call never be
questioned and that anyone who wishes to have an open debate about it
are religious fanatics and dumb country bumpkins, it is still very
|Our Enemies Have WMD
By John R. Taylor
[From Dec 2004]
To those who feel it was
a mistake to invade Iraq: you have failed to learn a very important
lessen in logic. As a teaching tool, let me tell you how my daughter
learned this lesson.
As a new sixteen year old
driver, she was parking in a shopping center parking lot. The space she
decided to park in was an angle type and it was angled in the other
direction. As she started entering the space, my niece, who was setting
in the front passenger side, said she didn’t think they could make it.
Well, my daughter thought she could. She kept going. When she felt the
car stop and saw the white Toyota in front of her rock, she knew she had
The lesson in logic she
learned that day, and the one I hope my disgruntle countryman will soon
learn, is that the consequences of being wrong is a factor of paramount
importance in any decision. What was my daughter’s down side. If she was
wrong but continued on her course, she would cause an accident, damage
property and possible cause injury, a relatively catastrophic loss. If
she was right and could have made it, but stopped anyway, she would have
to stop and back up, a relatively small loss.
|Is America ready for a
By Alec Russell in Salt Lake
When Reed Smoot arrived
in Washington as a newly elected Utah senator a little over a century
ago, he was left in no doubt what America thought of Mormons assuming
positions of federal power.
"Perhaps it may be for
the best that the Mormons should send an apostle to Washington," opined
Harper's Weekly. "It stimulates the public disgust. They have thriven on
ignorance, obscurity and sensuality. Attention of decent enlightened
people is the last thing that will profit them."
And that was among the
more open-minded commentaries. For the next four years, from 1903 to
1907, Smoot was treated as little better than a one-man freak show as
enemies of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints subjected him
to thousands of hours of hearings to deny him his seat.
The church is recalling
the saga with trepidation as one member, Mitt Romney, the Republican
governor of Massachusetts, prepares for a serious tilt at the White
House in 2008.
"The Smoot hearings were
a watershed event in our relations with the United States and the
world," said Dallin Oaks, one of the 12 apostles who counsel the
prophet, the Mormon equivalent of the Pope.
"If Romney should be the
[Republican] nominee, the church will be in a position in the media that
it has not been in since the Smoot hearings. You couldn't read a
newspaper for four or five years without reading about Mormons during
the Smoot hearings.
We fund terrorist every time we turn the
By John R. Taylor
You have heard all those who
want to mind everybody else’s business scream about your SUV. How you
should feel guilty about driving one because you are aiding terrorist
and destroying the environment. Well maybe you are, but isn’t it going a
bit far when we don’t have even the freedom to choose what we drive? If
are willing to pay $50 for a tank of fuel that will take you 200 miles,
I think you should have that right. I like paying $16 for a tank that
will take me 400 miles better; of course I’d like it better were it four
or five dollars.
The problem is that we
should be able to drive what we want and can afford, and not dirty up
all our air, and help those who wish us dead. And we can. We may not do
it, but it is completely in our power to do it. What we all together
must realize is that it is not so important what we pour our fuel into,
but rather what the fuel is we are putting in it. The gasoline we now
use is distilled from petroleum crude oil, a resource we have in great
supply, but not nearly so great as our colossal appetite for it. Because
we can’t supply it domestically we have no choice but to import it. The
United Kingdom has a vast North Sea reserve and we import enormous
quantities form them. This adds to our trade deficit and is therefore
damaging to our economy, however the UK is our ally and doing business
with them is much more favorable than doing business with counties and
peoples who are trying to destroy us. But we require so much oil that we
must get it from everywhere. OPEC, the Oil Producing and Exporting
Countries, is a cartel of mostly Middle Eastern countries; Venezuela
being the notable exception. That their anti-competitive practice of
suppliers banning together to control the price of a commodity is
unethical and would be illegal in this country, should be enough for us
not to trade with them to say nothing of the fact that of every dollar
we Americans spend on their oil much of it goes to sponsor terrorism and
acts of violence against us and our allies. We are most literally
trading with the enemy. The attacks of 9/11 were funded by American
dollars paid to Saudi Arabia for oil.
|Lancing Boils and
Working Medicine or Physician Heal Thyself
By John R. Taylor
Watching my children
raise their families, I have noticed that they carry their children to
the doctor much more frequently than I did them. And as I think back, my
parents used physicians much less than even I did. Now I, in no way, am
implying or suggesting that my children use doctors too much or that my
parents use them too little. But this has made me think about my
childhood, and how things were way back then.
Growing up I was cursed
with chronic lesions or boils. The things old folks back then called
risens. More often than not, I had one of these painful and embarrassing
sores someplace on my body. Daddy took me to the doctor a time or two
about them, but all we ever got from him was a bill, so Daddy and Mama
treated me themselves.
Mama’s idea about the
cause of my affliction was that I had poison in my system and it needed
to come out. I just needed a “good working”. Her approach to getting it
out was straight forward enough. She give me large doses of an archaic
laxative called Syrup of Black Drouph; I, nor my computer can spell it,
and it may have been drought, or something else, but this black, sweet
tasting liquid had an effect I remember all too well. I think this stuff
must have been invented back during the Spanish Inquisition for
torturing heretics. I have read about some of the instruments used for
that purpose and this tonic would have fit right in.
The Names Have Been Left the Same
by John R. Taylor
You often read stories or see movies that
tell you the names have been changed to protect the innocent. Well this
story has no innocents. I know all the characters and they are none of
them even close to innocent. Now I am telling this tail for the truth,
though I can’t really testify that I actually remember the events
themselves, but I do remember telling the story many times. In the
telling over the years some of the facts have gotten fuzzy around the
edges and some more have been completely lost, and I think maybe I have
made up a few to take their place.
My yarn I have for you is from a time long ago, a time some say was
ignorant, intolerant and backward, but I remember as good, clean and
peaceful. It was a time when young children and teens said “yes Sir and
no Mam,” to their elders.
It was a time when not every family had a
television and those who did had only one and usually got only one
channel. The programs were of the type, The Andy Griffin Show, Bonanza
and the Wonderful World of Color. Genie was the raciest thing on. Right
and wrong were black and white and not shades of gray. Summers were long
and hot and we children could not fathom the meaning of the word bored.
Our imaginations were boundless as we were kings, knights, cowboys,
Indians and superheros. The magical phrase, pretend like, instantly
transformed us into whatever or whoever our young minds could conceive.
A scrawny twelve year old boy could become an Indian chief. An old
abandon tobacco harvester became a Martian spaceship. We had used the
phrase so often we shortened it to one word, “tenlike”, although we
never noticed that we had. “Tenlike you’re a cowboy and that stick is
your gun.” Poof! I was a dashing and daring cowboy and a stick from a
pecan tree was a Colt Peacemaker.
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