If all the “genuine apparel” is red, white or blue, explain this gentleman’s beige hat at a Romney rally?
As the election fast approaches and the Eastern Seaboard is bombarded by a mega-storm that is a rare combination of a Nor’easter and a hurricane, Republicans, desperate to regain power, are up to their usual tactics to try to sway voters their way. The usual libel, slander, racist and biblical pronouncements are given excessive coverage given their frivolity.
Last week’s Trump pronouncement offering a reward in exchange for President Obama’s passport application and college transcripts received undue media attention, as if anything this bloviating egomaniac says is relevant or pertinent to any facts. Distraction is the name of the game, and the GOP wants anything to distract us from Willard Romney’s inability to stick to a real position, his Mormon Cult or his reluctance to release his Olympic records, Massachusetts governance records or his much coveted tax returns.
With the looming storm, FEMA is front and center for providing disaster relief and has worked reasonably well when not mismanaged by an unconcerned GOP administration as it was during Katrina. Romney’s position on FEMA is pretty clear: privatize it for profit. During a 2011 GOP primary debate he (Romney) said it was “immoral” for the federal government to be spending money on disaster relief when it should be focused on deficit reduction: “Every time you have an occasion to take something from the federal government and send it back to the states, that’s the right direction. And if you can go even further, and send it back to the private sector, that’s even better. Instead of thinking, in the federal budget, what we should cut, we should ask the opposite question, what should we keep?” Essentially, Romney would do to disaster zones what Enron did to the power grid in California in 2002. If history is any indicator, Willard will most likely flip flop on his FEMA position, but make no mistake, if he wins, hurricane victims will be considered the 47% of Americans who do not concern him.
Naturally, the bible-thumping fundamentalists don’t want to be left out of this opportunity to preach their hateful agenda. This hurricane is caused, naturally, by God’s displeasure with the support for gay marriage by those liberals in the White House. Seriously, this is exactly what Defend and Proclaim the Faith ministries founder John McTernan is asserting. Hurricane Sandy is proof that “God is systematically destroying America.” He continues, “If you add the area of the drought and now the hurricane together, it would be about 80 percent of the country!” … “As I said, the Holy God of Israel is systematically destroying America right before our eyes.” Doesn’t it make you wonder why God has singled out the entire East Coast for this storm when there are so many God-fearing Christians there? Is God really this vindictive?
I remember how the November 2,2010 Teaparty victories were so heralded as a “grassroots” victory for frustrated Americans tired of the business-as-usual Washington D.C. politics. These victories brought us the 112th Congress, you know, the Congress that has given America record filibusters and anti-abortion legislation. It was exactly what Nate Silver of FiveThirtyEight.com predicted. He is a numbers guy, a master of prediction based on precise mathematics, formulated by a reliable dissection of myriad polling data. Since he has predicted a higher likelihood that President Obama will be victorious over Romney this election day, the right-wing media has naturally tried to discredit Mr. Silver by labeling him effeminate and gay. If you hate the facts, attack the messenger. That’s not a childish way to handle the truth at all!
Naturally any Obama supporter who is a Republican feels a certain way for all the wrong reasons. Just ask John Sununu. The former New Hampshire GOP Governor said in an interview the only reason former Secretary of State Colin Powell would endorse President Obama is because he too is African-American, which is absolutely insulting to a man who has achieved what General Powell has accomplished in his life.
Willard, as per usual, is employing dubious “facts” in his most recent ads, which he’ll claim to have no knowledge of. For example, his new ad claims Chrysler is moving Jeep jobs to China. One reporter said the mendaciousness of Romney’s new auto ad is breathtaking even for him. Apparently, he’s utilizing his lying for the lord doctrine of his Mormon cult as his principle campaign strategy. For some reason unbeknownst to me, the American people seem to be perfectly okay with his mendacity and lack of resolve to maintain a position.
Just wait folks. It is only going to get worse. The election is only eight days away and the GOP will break any law, commit fraud, lie, cheat and steal their way to victory. This time, we are far more prepared than we were in 2000 and 2004 when we never suspected the fraud the GOP will engage in to rig an election. Hopefully, America has acquired a sufficient distaste for outright lies and deceit.
Helen Radkey, Researcher out of Salt Lake City, Utah wrote this paper on the blind obedience required by the Mormon Church (or any other organized religion in my opinion, Mormonism being the most egregious). With her permission, I am sharing her work in its original form. Thanks to Park Romney for passing this on to me.
In what may be one of the most controversial exposés written about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS), my report unmasks blind obedience within the LDS Church, and how this Mormon requirement could affect Mitt Romney. I address abusive Mormon behavior, with emphasis on Church disciplinary councils, used to control and discipline members. Months of planning and over 100 hours went into the piecing together of this unique report, which draws from personal experience, interviews with involved parties, and Church communications. My account is jammed-packed with information that demonstrates how Mormons are expected to blindly following LDS leaders. Multiple Mormon abusers are named. As a card-carrying temple Mormon, Mitt Romney is part of the Mormon system of rules—an intrinsically abusive system. Romney may not be mentally equipped to fairly govern all the citizens of this nation. Can America afford to take this risk?
Blind obedience and Mitt Romney
By Helen Radkey
October 27, 2012
Mormon blind obedience
Since the days of the founding “prophet” of Mormonism, Joseph Smith Jr., presiding officers of the The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS) have mandated obedience to Church officials. The LDS Church is a patriarchal religion rooted in the traditions of the Old Testament. Unquestioning loyalty to LDS leaders is an immutable demand placed on Church members—and a fundamental characteristic of Mormonism.
Mormon culture emphasizes the need for members to be obedient to the authoritarian control of Church leadership. LDS authorities believe they have a divine right to impose their will upon others. A member cannot be considered a good Mormon unless he or she is subservient to LDS leaders and demonstrates compliance with Mormon teachings. Mormons may insist they sustain Church officials on a voluntary basis, but if they do not conform to the directives of their leaders, they may be judged to be in a state of apostasy.
Blind obedience compels the subordination of individual LDS Church members to the hierarchical superstructure. It is the invisible glue that binds the LDS Church and the principal ingredient that fuels the wealthy and powerful Mormon machine. Questioning the edicts of LDS authorities is viewed as subversive behavior that undermines religious faith. Blind obedience keeps Church members in check, via an uncomplicated, orderly world, where dissent is largely prohibited and Mormons obediently do as they are told—a psychological pattern generally valued above critical thinking by faithful Mormons.
The oppressive Mormon system
Mormon officials who preside over local LDS congregations, known as wards and stakes, or branches and districts for smaller congregations, are required to exercise strict control over their flocks. They are taskmasters who must ensure members abide by the rules.
A Church member who has violated Church rules is generally subjected to a Church disciplinary council—known as a Church court—an ecclesiastical trial during which the member is tried for violations of Church standards. Serious violations of civil law, spouse or child abuse, adultery, fornication, rape, and incest, usually generate Church discipline. Depending on the gravity of the charge, a disciplined member may be given “cautionary counsel,” or put on formal probation, or disfellowshipped, or excommunicated.
Formal probation involves restrictions of Church privileges for the offender as specified by the Church council. A disfellowshipped Mormon remains a member of the LDS Church, but is no longer in good standing. Disfellowshipped members are not entitled to hold a temple recommend, exercise the (exclusively male) priesthood, partake of the “sacrament” in Church, serve in any Church position, offer public prayer, give a sermon, or teach a lesson at Church. Excommunication is the most severe judgment a Church court can impose. Excommunicated parties are no longer considered members of the LDS Church and are denied all privileges of membership, including the payment of tithes.
Apostasy ranks high on the list of reasons for excommunication from the LDS Church. An apostate is a member who deserts the faith, a renegade dissenter who once embraced Mormonism, but now rejects it. Turning or falling away from Mormon gospel teachings, especially teaching or following “anti-Mormon” doctrines, and acting in opposition to the Church or its leaders, is perceived as apostasy—spiritual death—alienation from God.
Mormon apostates are “axed” to protect the interests of the LDS Church. When dissidents are labelled with “excommunicated” status, it creates the impression they have sinned. Expelled parties are likely to be discredited, stigmatized, and shunned by other Mormons, thus reducing the “anti-Mormon” influence of ousted members within Mormon ranks.
The LDS Church fails to provide a healthy environment for independent thought. Members are expected to readily accept Church dogma. Many Mormons, including dissident scholars, have been disfellowshipped, excommunicated, and fired from Church–related jobs, for writing and teaching alternate views on topics such as Mormon racism, Mormon feminism, gay rights, genetic science, and Church history. Speaking publicly in opposition to Church policy or doctrine is not tolerated. It does not matter how much supportive evidence, including documentation, is presented, members found guilty are punished through Church courts because they disagree with the “official” LDS position.
LDS officialdom is overly preoccupied with the performance of Church members. The “worthiness” of individual Mormons is measured by their degree of obedience to LDS leaders and the Mormon cause. LDS membership is influenced by the “we alone are right” persuasion, in a delusional world of domination and submission, where the “carrot-and-stick” approach is used to induce members to conform to Church standards.
Church members are offered a combination of rewards and punishments to regulate their behavior. Obedient Mormons are rewarded with social acceptance, Church assignments, and the promise of eternal salvation, godhood, and happiness with their families forever. Unmanageable Mormons may be reprimanded and threatened with disciplinary action.
General Authorities of the LDS Church are implicated in abusive behavior because they empower local LDS leaders to maintain “the law and order of the Church” through private, faultfinding Church courts that—more often than not—guarantee the “tarring and feathering” of non-compliant members who make a noise—especially a public noise.
In a spiritually abusive system such as the LDS Church, where the belief in an authoritarian priesthood power is extolled, LDS leaders require the place of honor. Mormons are encouraged to place their leaders upon pedestals. Members are taught to never criticize Church leaders, past or present, even if the claims are true. Not only do some LDS officials expect special recognition, they may use their Church status to coerce members by instructing them to deny their inner voice and decision-making process.
Charles Parsons, an LDS bishop in Hurstville, Sydney, Australia, offered me a ward secretarial position, in early 1975, when I was still an active Mormon. After I declined his proposal, Parsons insisted I should have prayed for the strength to fulfill the “calling” and not prayed and asked if the position was God’s will for me—as I told him I had done. After the run-in with Parsons, I received no Church assignments for the next six months.
LDS leaders may give counsel in any area, not just in spiritual matters. Church members do not need to ask their bishops for permission regarding mundane daily acts. Mormons are encouraged to “choose the right” in every aspect of their lives. They are counseled to read the scriptures and pray about private matters. If a personal choice involves the offer of a Church “calling” or work assignment initiated by a Mormon official, like Parsons, for example, the Church requirement would ordinarily take precedence over personal responsibilities. If a member wishes to remain in good standing, he or she will obediently accept all formal Church demands and put his or her “shoulder to the (Mormon) wheel.”
Common consent and rigged Mormon record-keeping
There is a democratic principle in Mormonism, known as the law of common consent. “Callings” to positions in the LDS Church are made by authorized leaders and then brought before appropriate Church congregations to be sustained or opposed. Church members do not nominate persons to office, but are asked to give their sustaining vote by raising their right hand in agreement, or they may give an opposing vote in the same way.
It appears members exercise their “free agency” when they accept or reject names, but this function is more or less perfunctory. Mormon congregations have been intimidated into conformity. Members are expected to sustain names presented to them, based upon the assumption that these names have been chosen by Church leaders who represent God.
There are times when common consent becomes a figment of the imagination. Acts of protest by members against Church leaders—especially acts of protest in opposition to a group of LDS officials—are viewed as rebellion and will not go unpunished. The issue is always seen as disobedience. There are no structural safeguards against the abuse of Church members who question. Protesters will be accused of not sustaining LDS leaders.
In June 1976, I attended a Sydney Australia South Stake conference, with seven other adult Mormons, to vote in opposition to the stake presidency and stake high council. The LDS officials, whom I voted against, had been responsible for the excommunications of four men—all devout Mormons—in 1975. Before the stake conference, I had interviewed about a dozen key witnesses and became convinced the accused men were innocent.
Retaliation was swift. A letter was hastily hand-delivered to my Sydney home, informing me I had been disfellowshipped from the LDS Church, on March 21—over three months earlier. The letter was signed by Hurstville Ward bishopric members, Bishop Charles Parsons, and “Bro” Allan D. Murrin, 1st counselor. The Church decree listed penalties and suggestions, but gave no reason for the bishop’s court outcome. I was advised I could no longer speak or participate in meetings or attend any assembly of Church officers.
My diminished Church standing was likely conjured up by Parsons, in collaboration with John Daniel Parker—stake president of Sydney Australia South Stake. Disfellowshipped members cannot vote to sustain or oppose the election of Church officers. My disfellowshipment status gave Sydney Mormon authorities an official reason to discount my opposing vote against them at stake conference. My vote could be safely disregarded.
The telltale dates on the letter I received from Parsons told the story. The letter was dated May 31, and was delivered on June 30, which was 101 days after the date of the action. According to the (Church) General Handbook (1968), a disfellowshipped member should be notified of the conditions of that penalty when the penalty is imposed. If that person does not attend the trial, he or she should be notified by two Melchizedek Priesthood bearers or by registered letter. Parsons violated Church rules. I did not attend the trial on March 21 and was not notified of the result until June 30. My disfellowshipment status appears to have been quickly determined after my opposing vote at the June conference.
Those subject to Church disciplinary sanctions have a right of appeal. An accused member may appeal the decision of a disciplinary council within 30 days of the decision. Parsons dated his letter, May 31, and it was handed to me on the night of June 30, exactly 30 days later. Parsons and Parker had strategically managed to block my right of appeal.
Records of LDS Church disciplinary proceedings that result in disfellowshipment or excommunication should be sent to the LDS First Presidency, as stated in the General Handbook. Nearly four months after the bishop’s court, Church headquarters had not received the record—another reason why my disfellowshipment did not occur in March.
When I protested to LDS officials in Salt Lake City, a letter, dated July 9, 1976, from the Office of the First Presidency stated “…according to the Confidential Section of the Membership Department…” the record of my trial had not reached General Church Offices. The letter also stated: “There is no provision for receiving direct testimony on an appeal to the First Presidency since all appeals are handled only on the basis of the official record made by the lower court.” I was advised I would first have to appeal to the high council court before an appeal to the First Presidency could be entertained. In other words, I would have to appeal to Parker concerning the judgment of the ward trial. Parsons had also signed the disfellowshipment letter on behalf of Hurstville Ward bishopric member, Hugh Nugent, 1st counselor to Parsons. A year later at my home, in June 1977, Nugent told me in front of witnesses that he had no idea why I had been disfellowshipped. All three members of a ward bishopric are expected to participate in bishop’s courts which have jurisdiction over all ward members. If my disfellowshipment had occurred on March 21, Nugent should have been aware of the reason for the verdict.
The Hurstville Ward bishopric was part of a Church hierarchy that was more concerned with status than pastoral care. Running amok with Church-sanctioned authority—with the support of LDS General Authorities and back-to-back LDS mission presidents in Sydney—LDS officials in south Sydney bullied members on a ward and stake level, until all Mormons who objected to their overbearing behavior were driven out of the Church
Sustaining “right or wrong” and kangaroo Church courts
The sustaining “right or wrong” belief has its roots in early Mormonism, in a secret, oath-bound vigilante group known as the Mormon Danite band or “Destroying Angels.” Mormon Danites took oaths to support a brother “right or wrong” even unto the shedding of blood. They were expected to sustain, protect, defend, and obey Mormon leaders under all circumstances. Members of the Danite band considered themselves as much bound to obey the heads of the Church as to obey God. To disobey was punishable by death.
My rude awakening to the modern-day version of the sustaining “right or wrong” Mormon rule came through Charles Parsons, when he unexpectedly stopped by my home on February 11, 1976. Parsons demanded that I meet with Parker that evening or a Church court would be convened. My Church membership was on the line, according to Parsons. When I asked him why I should meet with Parker, he insisted, “there could only be one voice in the stake and that was the voice of Stake President Parker.” Parsons then said I was required to sustain Parker “right or wrong.” I refused those terms on the spot.
It is commonly taught in the LDS Church that members should support all actions by presiding Church officers. If these actions are flawed, Mormons believe the leaders—not the members who support the incorrect actions—will be held accountable. According to Parsons, if the excommunications of the four Mormon men occurred in error, I was still expected to sustain Parker regarding those stake disciplinary council judgments—even though I believed all parties were innocent of any violation that could justify such action.
The issue at stake was the 1975 excommuncations of four Mormons—Wallace Brown, Jeffrey Watts, Brian Watts, and Paul Knightley. These men lived in Bankstown Ward, adjacent to Hurstville, in the Sydney Australia South Stake, presided over by Parker. Jeff Watts, an associate of Wallace Brown, was the first to be excommunicated. Brown was allowing LDS missionaries to use his home to teach prospective converts. Watts was upset when missionaries abruptly stopped coming to Brown’s home. They were teaching two people there and Watts was concerned the couple would be lost to the LDS Church. He phoned Earl Carr Tingey, president of the Australia Sydney Mission, and asked for an explanation. Tingey refused to respond. Watts questioned Tingey, at a Sunday meeting at Bankstown Ward, a few days later. After Tingey brushed him aside, Watts told Tingey his behavior was unlawful. Jeff Watts was speedily excommunicated by a stake high council court, upon the basis of “evidence” from LDS mission president, Earl Tingey.
The final point put to Jeff Watts at his excommunication trial was, “Do you accept what we say as leaders of the Church in this stake?” Watts replied, “Yes, in righteousness.” According to Watts, the court’s answer to his response was, “No, right or wrong!” After the trial of Jeff Watts, there was an attempt to excommunicate Wallace Brown, the following night. Brown had challenged a stake presidency edict that prohibited his wife, Taisa, from asking the children in her Bankstown Ward classes to kneel in prayer to maintain reverence. Taisa was told this behavior was too much like the Roman Catholics. Wallace Brown claimed stake officials had interfered with his wife’s prerogative. Brown had also corrected Maximilian Forstpointner, the bishop of Bankstown Ward, who had tried to arbitrarily change the time of Sunday priesthood meetings without an elder’s quorum vote. Brown asked Forstpointner to obey the Church law of common consent. Forstpointner condescended and allowed the elder’s quorum to vote. Shortly thereafter, Brown received a scribbled carbon copy charge sheet summonsing him to a stake high council court. With no verifiable charges presented against him, Wallace Brown was disfellowshipped at his first Church court, which lasted nine hours, until the cock crowed.
Bishop Maximilian Forstpointner confronted Brian Watts and Paul Knightley soon after Brown’s first trial and demanded to know if they would support him “right or wrong.” These two young men stood firmly against Forstpointner’s requirement and they were soon summonsed to a Church court. The question of sustaining “right or wrong” was put to them a number of times, and they were drawn into nasty disputes and name-calling by those who presided over the court. Watts and Knightley were excommunicated because they refused to sustain local Church leaders, especially Forstpointner, “right or wrong.”
Brian Watts and Paul Knightley were probably excommunicated to eliminate them as witnesses so they could not testify against Forstpointer. They were present when he attempted to change the priesthood meeting time in violation of the common consent law.
Wallace Brown was excommunicated from the LDS Church three months after he was disfellowshipped. Independent witnesses, who were waiting outside the court at Brown’s excommunication trial, claimed he was verbally abused in an “unchristian-like manner” by LDS authorities during his rowdy second trial. Brown openly criticized this court for excommunicating Brian Watts and Paul Knightley. Facing no specific charges—and dealing only with personal harassment—Brown declared he was “in the synagogue of Satan…” He left the room and was subsequently excommunicated from the LDS Church.
In November 1978, while still listed as a disfellowshipped Church member, I prepared a seven-page pamphlet, Free Agency and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Australia, with the assistance of another member, John Mitchell. The pamphlet outlined the “…disintegration of respect for the rights and freedom of the individual within certain quarters…of Sydney…In the Church in Sydney, a number of individuals have been removed from the fellowship of the Church for failing to sustain their local leaders right or wrong, i.e., obedience to authority without regard to personal feelings, conscience, personal revelation, any second witness, self respect, or right of choice…”
Copies of the Free Agency pamphlet were mailed to the presiding officers of every stake, ward, district, and branch of the LDS Church in Australia, each Mormon apostle in Salt Lake City, various LDS mission presidents around the world, and selected Church members in Sydney. John Mitchell and I were promptly excommunicated, along with Stuart Olmstead, who had financed the distribution of the tract. Parker had been replaced by Graham Sully as stake president. Prior to my excommunication trial, when Sully handed me the court summons, he accused me of “causing confusion in the Church.”
The non-specific “conduct in violation of the law and order of the Church” charge was given as the reason on paper for the excommunications of Wallace Brown, Jeff and Brian Watts, Paul Knightley, John Mitchell, Stuart Olmstead, and myself. In actuality, Sydney LDS authorities had overstepped their boundaries—expected unquestioning obedience— and overreacted when they were faced with objections to their behavior. They responded the only way they knew how, by taking punitive action against the members involved. A number of Mormons in Bankstown and Hurstville wards were familiar with the details of the seven excommunications—and did nothing—along with other members who did not want to know the facts. In spite of the tendency to look the other way, around the time of my exodus from the LDS Church, in early 1976, roughly 30 Mormons left the Church because of the excommunciations and the sustaining “right or wrong” requirement.
Death to the “Ark-steadiers”
Two years after I moved to Salt Lake City, Wallace Brown died in Sydney, in July 1986. After I received the news of his death, I met with Mormon bishop, Larry Shaw, at his home in Salt Lake City. I notified Shaw of Brown’s death and informed him that Brown had been unjustly excommunicated from the LDS Church in 1975. I also advised Shaw I intended to publish an account of my LDS experiences—as a tribute to Wallace Brown.
Shaw compared the LDS Church to the legendary Ark of the Covenant, built in the time of Moses. He flatly stated that God had killed Uzzah, as recorded in the Old Testatment book of 2 Samuel 6:6-7, because Uzzah had tried to steady the Ark of the Covenant when he was not authorized to do so. God would also strike me down, predicted Shaw, if I committed any action (such as publications) which could harm the LDS Church.
The present-day Mormon interpretation of the story of Uzzah is applied to the relationship between members and the LDS Church. Members are instructed they should not correct Church leaders or Church policies, despite any good intentions. Mormons are taught the leaders of the Church are in charge and it is not their place to correct them.
On September 11, 1986, I sent a letter to the First Presidency, the highest-ranking governing body of the LDS Church, advising them I wanted my name cleared of any wrongdoing implied on Mormon records. I requested Church records show I was no longer a member of the LDS Church because I requested this and for no other reason. I objected to the sustaining “right or wrong” mandate imposed by Sydney Church officials. At my Salt Lake City home, in August 1987, Paul Mecham, stake president of Salt Lake Granite Stake, showed me a letter, dated December 1, 1986, from the First Presidency, affirming my excommunication from the LDS Church. The letter had been signed by each member of the First Presidency, Ezra Taft Benson and Gordon B. Hinckley, both now deceased, and Thomas S. Monson, current Church president and “living prophet.”
Thomas S. Monson, and other LDS higher-ups at Church headquarters in Salt Lake City, who were flooded during the 1970s with appeals of concern regarding the abuse of power by Sydney LDS leaders, were complicit in backing blind obedience. Without exception, they rejected all pleas for help and “rubber-stamped” the Sydney excommunications.
Former LDS bishop, Larry Shaw, resurfaced when he phoned me from Atlanta, Georgia, on February 27, 2012. At the time, my research discoveries on the proxy baptisms of well-known Holocaust victims, such as Simon Wiesenthal’s parents and Anne Frank, were receiving extensive media coverage and would prompt Mormon officials to make technological changes that would block my access to their database of proxy rites.
During the hour-long phone call, Shaw attempted to pressure me back into the LDS Church through forceful persuasion. He refused to accept my complete renunciation of Mormonism. I interpreted his call as personal harassment because of the work I had done to uncover posthumous rites for non-Mormons, which had damaged the reputation of the LDS Church. Shaw asked me about my health, three times, and implied that I might soon be going to the other side because of my age. He had called to silence me as a dissenter.
Mormon temple oaths
Faithful Mormons believe their first and foremost duty is uncompromising loyalty to the LDS Church and unquestioning obedience to Church leaders. Obedience is perceived as an active demonstration of implicit trust in the Mormon faith. Mormons who participate in LDS temple ceremonies are locked into a loyalty-to-Church mindset through the rites performed in LDS temples, which include oaths of loyalty and sacrifice to the Church.
The endowment ceremony serves as a rite of adult initiation in LDS temples. During the temple endowment, Mormons take oaths to obey Mormon gospel laws, which include:
- The Law of Obedience requires participating temple patrons to promise to obey the law of God. Mormons understand the LDS Church to be the one true source of God’s law.
- The Law of Sacrifice requires participating temple patrons to covenant to sacrifice all that they possess, even their own lives, if necessary, in sustaining and defending “the kingdom of God.” To a Mormon, the term “the kingdom of God” means the LDS Church.
- The Law of the Gospel includes an admonition to avoid speaking evil of the “Lord’s anointed [Church priesthood leaders].”
- The Law of Consecration requires participating temple patrons to consecrate themselves, their time, their talents, and everything the Lord has blessed them with, or whatever he may bless them with, to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for the building up of “the [Mormon] kingdom of God on the earth…”
Mitt Romney’s Mormon indoctrination
Mitt Romney has been exposed to Mormon authoritarian rule since infancy. Mormonism has been the dominant influence in the forging of his core values and identity. Romney has internalized a theology that unreservedly claims that the LDS Church is “the only true Church” and rejects divine authority in other faiths. Mormons believe the United States was created and chosen by God, as the latter-day “Promised Land,” where Mormonism could come into existence and flourish as the “restoration” of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Many Mormons believe the USA will eventually become a Mormon-ruled theocracy.
As an oath-taking temple Mormon, Romney has consecrated his life, talents, and worldly goods to the LDS Church. To be faithful to his temple vows he must also support Mormon ecclesiastical rule. That means following directives from Temple Square as well as his local Church leaders. The issue is whether Romney would be able to separate his actions as president from Mormon doctrines, edicts, and rules governing human behavior.
Differing views on faith have no place in the secular political sphere and the shaping of political policies. The multicultural USA includes Mormons, millions of believers in non-Mormon religions, and non-religious citizens. We should not be governed by a president who has taken private oaths to prioritize the advancement of Mormon agenda above other interests. Flexibility in the rule of law is the hallmark of a successful government.
Mitt Romney is a religious authoritarian whose zeal for Mormon rules mirrors that of his Church. If Romney was the commander-in-chief of this country, he would probably expect to be supported, without question, as he has undoubtedly done in the past when he served in Mormon leadership positions. Like many—if not most LDS leaders—Romney is likely to be insistent on the “rightness” of his position. As a Mormon bishop and stake president in the Boston area, he was used to dictating actions and having members obey his instructions. He did not have to make a case, or answer questions, for his decisions.
In Church, Romney frequently spoke about obeying authority and God’s fixed standards. During Mitt Romney’s years as a bishop and stake president, he would have disciplined Church members and played an active role in excommunicating Mormons. Romney has reportedly said he would support any Mormon bishop who initiates an excommunication from the LDS Church. He has also said he would not question the reasoning behind the excommunication, even if it was for differing views, and not misconduct. This attitude demonstrates Romney’s blind trust in the Mormon system, his one-eyed support of rank and file LDS officials, and his sustaining of Church court judgments “right or wrong.”
Mitt Romney is part of an aggressive Church that demanded blind obedience to its leaders in the past, expects it from members today, and will likely expect it in the future. If Romney is elected as president of our nation, we Americans may soon be required to sustain the White House “right or wrong,” in conformity with the Mormon imperative.
© Copyright 2012 Helen Radkey—Permission granted to reproduce for non-commercial purposes, provided text is not changed and this copyright notice is included.
Have you noticed the increase in pernicious GOP dirty tricks currently being exposed during this election, which is now at its apex? Sadly, perhaps half of this superficial, material-obsessed country feels this sketchy Mormon candidate is a step up from President Obama, who’s saved us from a depression. They believe Mitt Romney’s assertion he’s going to “fix” the economy by restoring the policies of the Bush crime family, who, as we all know, has wreaked havoc on the U.S. and the world’s economies.
It’s no wonder he idolizes a master manipulator like his cult founder, Joseph Smith. Like Smith, except in a more grandiose way, Willard Romney has helped this cult fraudulently dupe millions of adherents out of billions of dollars. Romney is the manifestation of Smith’s White Horse Prophecy coming to fruition if elected to the highest office in the land. It is also their last hope, because if the GOP is dealt the crushing blow they so richly deserve, their right-wing Teaparty agenda will fade into oblivion (albeit slowly) as will the desperate proponents of the Mormon Cult. Romney and Ryan long to bring America “back” to the days where both women and the proletarian “working stiffs” knew their place and wouldn’t dare demand equal rights.
When your candidate speaks fondly of a trip to what is essentially a Chinese sweatshop, where workers sleep on premises, twelve to a room for pennies an hour, you know this callous man cares little for AMERICAN workers and their families. It’s obvious a couple of entitled boys born with silver spoons in their mouths will never understand there is such a thing as the working poor. “Job creator” is just code for we really could care less about the poor and are preoccupied with anti-abortion legislation. Willard Romney’s main objective is to harvest human labor for profit. His specious sophist of a running mate has legislated little other than laws to restrict women’s rights when it comes to their own bodies. Ryan and Romney are controlled by Teaparty puppet strings, so you know it will only get worse if they’re elected based on previous behavior.
Mormons and many of their GOP cohorts have shown a severe distaste for workers’ rights and unions. There is a history of nepotism and cronyism in the Mormon Church unlike any other group, so if you’re not one of the indoctrinated, you’re undeserving of a promised life. You are also a second class citizen if you happen to be a woman as well.
Not only did Romney never say he’d support the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, his cult has a patriarchal bias. If only the media would ask a few relevant questions. Just once I’d like to hear this asked to the Mormon candidate: If a person believes that god is a patriarch who rules over multiple wives, that likewise practicing said polygamy is an eternal requirement to be with him in the “highest degree of the celestial kingdom” in the afterlife, and that only men can have priesthood power to run and administer god’s church on earth, can I truly trust that person to fight for and defend absolutely equal rights for women in society via legislation and judicial decisions? The Mormon Cult is desperate for new converts and looks mainly to the less educated Third World for more brainwashing.
We all know exactly what these two will do. They will roll back the clocks to the good ol days, say pre-1890,
when polygamy was legal and install activist misogynist justices on the Supreme Court while removing all semblance of parity when it comes to workers’ rights. As Edmond Burke wisely noted, those who ignore history are destined to repeat it. Make no mistake, Romney and Ryan long to repeat all the mistakes of the Bush Administration and then make a few more colossal whoppers that will most assuredly propel the United States into Third World status. History has taught us no less.
Due to the Citizens United Decision by the Supreme Court, America is facing the greatest assault on our democracy by having fostered a system where the wealthiest wield the most political influence. Naturally, to some extent, this has always been the case, but it is more apparent now because they can donate unlimited funds anonymously. Sheldon Adelson has been one of the most prominent benefactors of this corrupt system where he, for selfish reasons, can essentially buy the candidates he wants and ultimately determine who is on the Supreme Court. This letter is a response to parents of the school who were taken aback by our initial refusal to donate to anything associated with this man. – VJ
An Open Letter to the Patrons of the Adelson School:
Recently we were sent a letter soliciting donations for the Adelson Gala to help alleviate the costs of tuition for needy students. It was met with a bit of incredulity as the benefactor of the school has been a subject most prominently featured in the news lately. Unfortunately, the portrayal of Mr. Adelson has been less than propitious. It was our misunderstanding which rendered us unaware he has a fairly non-existent role financially with the foundation. Having learned this, we will certainly not penalize innocent students in need over the unfortunate association with Adelson’s political agenda and amend our position.
The anti-democratic Citizens United decision has turned our nation into a pay for play political nightmare where average Americans have lost their footing in the political process. Sheldon Adelson, with his taxation agenda, could certainly fund all the needy students with the $10 million he threw away on Newt Gingrich. With just a fraction of his $25 billion dollar net worth, he could probably finance ALL students in the Las Vegas metro, public and private combined. We felt in this year, where no amount is too great for him to invest in his own political ambitions, that it was insulting to ask small business owners to give when he would not. That was the brunt of our issue. We’ve always donated to the school in years past, prior to this assault on our very own democracy by him and others like him. Period. There was no ill-will towards the patrons or staff of the school, only Sheldon Adelson and what he stands for. Morals, ethics and fairness are very important to our business and donating to someone (we thought was directly involved) was unconscionable given the circumstances of this election cycle’s perverse funding as well as the D.O.J.’s criminal investigation of Mr. Adelson .
Thank you for understanding our position.
2 Very Concerned “Job Creators”
UPDATE: it seems with all Sheldon’s millions, he couldn’t fool the American people with the disingenuous duo of Romney and Ryan. I suppose it still may be possible for the Supreme Court to actually reverse this hideous decision.
If it any well-informed voter feels a bit uneasy about some of the election practices in swing states, it might be due to the fact the voting machines are owned in part by Willard Romney’s wanna-be boxer son, Tagg Romney. He, along with the other nefarious trolls from the Romney camp, plan on winning any way they can, not even shy about stating, “We are going to STEAL Ohio.” It takes some brass ones to simply come out and admit they are cheating and believing “there’s not a goddamned thing any of you can do about it. We’ve got money and power.” Combine this lugubrious news with the thousands of voter registration forms that were thrown into a dumpster by a 31 year old GOP operative in the swing state of Virginia, and you get some of us folks feeling a bit queasy by now.
Just hang on, conspiracy theorists. Chuck Todd knows what’s fact and what’s fiction. This is why he gives equal airtime to “issues” like Trump’s Birtherism and Sheriff Arpaio’s fact-finding birth certificate “mission.” It’s not like we’ve proven countless times the birth certificate issue has more than been resolved, but for the purpose of making Democrats with real problems and concerns look equally foolish, albeit insane, Chuck T. will simply present them as the opposite end of the nutty spectrum. But hey, Chuckie, Mr. Daily Rundown, the Orly Taitz Birthers of the world should get the same airtime as those with documented cases of outright fraud and illegal election practices, right?
Chuck opted to lend any validity to the claims of possible election theft and tainted voting machines. He continues to equate actual cases of election (not voter) fraud as merely a conspiracy theory, like the events forcing the only President in history to produce his long form birth certificate. Nothing is said about the American people’s desire to cast their ballots freely like they do in so many countries. It’s gotten so bad, Chuck, the UNITED NATIONS is stepping in and monitoring US elections!
Chuck’s loyalty to Bain and the Romney camp was blatant in this interview with Obama campaign spokesperson Stephanie Cutter. She correctly asserts how Willard Romney was the head of Bain Capital through 2002. All Chuck could focus on was the removal of some controversial ads stating this FACT, not the veracity of the ads. He thought they were too mean and unfair, but had nothing to say of Romney’s own Birther comment.
Chuck often baits his colleague, Joe Scarborough into Obama-bashing (not that he needs any help). On the issue of whether President Obama should have met with (selected) world leaders during the recent UN General Assembly, Todd goaded Scarborough with statements comparing Obama 2012 with Bush 2004, “It’s weird” that Obama isn’t doing the same right now,” Todd concluded… “and then you’re going on The View.” Scarborough added that Obama “doesn’t seem to want to” build relationships with foreign leaders.” Chuck tacitly agreed, nodding in acquiescence.
He often allows GOP guests on his shows to finish spinning their fantastical nonsense unchallenged while repeatedly interrupting Democratic guests. I’ve never heard a more insane lie than when über-neocon and Teaparty madman Richard Mourdock was on The Daily Rundown, he stated his goal was to get “more and more people to believe it is a good thing to roll back the size of government…it would be a good thing if we increase personal freedoms,” Chuck Todd had no comment on those unfounded assertions. As if the GOP isn’t responsible for the greatest increases in the size of government historically. He was absolutely silent when Mourdock stated how bipartisanship should mean Democrats coming over to the Republican side, not both meeting in the middle, also know as “compromise.”
I’ve personally noticed how eager he is to create an election horse race for his corporate Comcast/G.E. masters, when, in all reality, there isn’t one. Remember the 47% comment? Chuck Todd quickly rose to Romney’s defense:
.. you don’t necessarily know. Is the candidate saying what he truly believes? Or is he saying what he thinks the audience wants to hear? Particularly at a place like a fund-raiser where partisan red meat is had, not just rubber chicken, if you will, that they eat. But, you know, in this videotape — which, of course, our national investigative correspondent, Michael Isikoff, acquired — you do get a sense of at least what the campaign is thinking sometimes. And in many ways Mitt Romney was sounding like a pundit — right? He was saying there are 47% of the country that is going to be with the president no matter what. But the part that he said, talking about that they pay no income taxes, that they want to be part of a government, it’s probably going to have legs and something he’s got to deal with. He’s put out a statement, a sort of non-innocuous statement, trying to deal with this a little ways. And it is a reminder: President Obama, when he was candidate Obama, had a similar incident where he was overheard talking about analyzing folks in the state of Pennsylvania, saying they cling to their guns and religion. And…it’s a political comment to this day that’s still a political problem for the president to deal with in those states.
As I write this, Chuck is giddily projecting Romney winning by a statistical 70% likelihood, based on some history he just manufactured on Morning Joe. His harsh criticism of all Democrats coupled with his loyalty to the Bain Capital magnate is all he cares to present on MSNBC in the morning and subsequently throughout the news day. I won’t even start on David Gregory and his Meet the Press cavalcade of GOP guests who are given a forum to spew their lies, unchallenged. It would be nice if there was a little objective journalism or even some actual liberal media once in a while. It’s obvious the corporations are pulling the puppet strings and “journalists” like Chuck Todd are happy to dance for the bosses. Once again, the claim of “liberal media” is simply the GOP projecting its own practices erroneously upon the innocent.
After Romney’s poor showing in Monday’s third and final debate, Chuck Todd speaks in a very harsh, irritated tone, noticeably different than yesterday. Hmmmmm. Perhaps I had a point?
A Guest Blog by Derek Wood of Sydney, NSW, Australia
The second of the Presidential debates has now taken place and it was a welcome return to form for Barack Obama. The President took a more aggressive stance and certainly scored a number of hits to the (largish) chin of his opponent Mitt Romney. The GOP candidate certainly didn’t help his cause by slipping up on a number of occasions and then mentioning the now classic comment “binders full of women”. It certainly was not a great comment to have come from someone aspiring to be the next President of the United States.
So after the first two debates it is 1-1 between the two candidates. As for the Obama supporters, they are now buoyed with the President showing his true debating skills, coupled with enough aggression to show he is the real deal. As for Romney, well, his team will need to regroup if they are going to come out on top in the final debate. Interestingly, after the second debate Romney appears to have garnered extra support – if the latest opinion polls are to be believed.
From an Australian point of view, there has been a feeling that Obama is back in control and is starting to hone in on his opponent. The Australian government has made it quite clear as to whose side they are on, and it is not Willard Romney. This is predominantly due to the risk that Romney would pose to world peace, especially that in the Middle East. His friendship with Israel and Netanyahu in particular needs to be put into the spotlight. Neither the US nor the West can afford another war in that part of the world. Alas, the signs are that a Romney Presidency would raise the odds of that happening. He wants to increase the Pentagon’s budget by $2 TRILLION!
Also, Mitt seems to have a regular occurrence of ‘putting his foot in his mouth’. Aside from upsetting a number of countries on his recent fund raising junket, he has since become famous for his 47% comment, and can now add the “binder” one to the list of calamities. Maybe he should now be known as ‘Calamity Mitt’. The “binder” comment does seem to cement the view that Romney has issues with women in general. Whether it is his religious upbringing, or otherwise it does appear that there is a problem here.
There is a parallel to this in Australia with the leader of the opposition, Tony Abbott. Two events have happened recently. Firstly, there was the misogyny attack he received from the Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, following the recent death of her father. Then, in an unprecedented move, Tony Abbott’s wife and daughters went public in an interview to tell all and sundry that he does not have any issues with women. Strange indeed. There is another similarity between the ‘pretenders to the throne’ both here in Australia and the United States. Both Mitt Romney and Tony Abbott are lacking in actual policy. Whilst this is a strategy that can work well (ex PM John Howard used this strategy to beat incumbent Paul Keating to the top job in Australia), the vast majority of voters want to know what the candidate and their party really stand for. To date, I cannot see too many policies spewing forth from the mouth of Mitt! However, banal comments are definitely to the fore with Romney!
So to conclude, the third debate will be important. Hopefully, Obama will continue on from the second debate and turn those proverbial screws on Romney and the GOP. As this is looking like a very close election, it is important for the President to make his mark. He could do no worse than watch video footage of Julia Gillard tearing strips off Tony Abbott!
We’d all appreciate that sort of honesty as Americans prefer candor in their representatives. VegasJessie
Follow Derek on Twitter @Main_Man