We have recently had a few new contributors join the site. I thought it would be a good idea to have an interview with a couple of them, allowing the readers to get a feel for them. I give you an interview with Ben Gridley and Paul Olsen.
Many people choose to ignore politics and social trends; what made you interested in these things?
Ben: I have a great interest in Individual freedom. If you have an interest in individual freedom you simply can't ignore politics and social trends. However I am much more interested in politics than social trends, because social trends do not mandate force on one person over another. True, social trends help create laws, but I would have laws that are based on principles rather than laws due to social trends.
Paul: Great question. People have laughed at me when I state that I hate politics. I am more interested in liberty than I am in politics. Politics are for politicians, promoting liberty is for statesmen and patriots. For many years I have been ridiculed for my position on a few issues. I have never received any monetary compensation for my countless hours in seeking and promoting truth as I see it. I owe some gratitude to Cleon Skousen who first planted the seed of desiring of understanding politics. I met an older couple over 20 years ago in a small town just north of UT border in Idaho. They gave me a copy of a poorly recorded speech given by Clean Skousen that was on a cassette tape. That is when I first learned of the fraudulent nature of our monetary policy and the Federal Reserve. That was a foundation of understanding and the beginning of my learning to money and politics. A few years later I learned how to use the internet :-). One thing I have learned is that with truth comes responsibility. Once on is awake, they must have a desire and care for their fellow man to be involved in the cause. So part of my answer to my interest is a feeling of moral obligation. If you saw children playing on Railroad tracks and a train was coming would you just ignore it and say "all is well" or would you “cheerfully do all things that lie in our power”. America and liberty is certainly on a collision course. I personally cannot understand how any professed Christian can believe they could ignore the danger of the children on the tracks. The results of tyranny are certainly more dangerous than a few children on the railroad tracks. Anyone who needs a better perspective may want to see this youtube trailer.... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GYkO_3dZAYg
What do you feel is the most important issue facing our nation?
Ben: I feel the most important issue facing our nation is our flawed economic situation. It is based purely on government force and not on sound money that is chosen by a free society.
Paul: I would say the most important issue facing our nation is Ignorance and Apathy. I think a lot of us have a poor understanding of what Liberty and freedom really is. I am reminded of the quote "None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free." (Johann Wolfgang von Goethe)
From a Biblical perspective it is clear Hosea 4:6 ¶My people are destroyed for lack of acknowledge. ( http://lds.org/scriptures/ot/hosea/4.6?lang=eng#5 ).
We literally have an educational crisis in America. I believe our education has become largely void of morality and principles of liberty. There is no doubt in my mind that we have a communist style educational system in the United States.
Who has had the largest impact on your overall political philosophy?
Ben: One of the most influential persons in my political philosophy is my father. I remember growing up having many discussions with my dad about politics growing up and learning about many of the flaws of government control and unintended consequences. My foundation has definitely come from my father. However I have since looked up to many others for gaining political insight. Two of my favorites being Ron Paul and Ezra Taft Benson, for learning about the constitution and freedom. Another person that I have watched closely and gained a lot of valuable information from is Glenn Beck however I have some issues with Glenn Beck as far as being a conditional freedom lover.
Paul: That is a tough question for me to answer. I do not know that I have a clear answer. So many have influence my understanding. I mentioned Skousen above. It was Steven Covey's 7 Habits book that helped me to understand the word principles and how they are natural laws. "To expand, a principle is a natural law like gravity. It’s different than a value. Values are subjective; principles are objective. Gravity… if you drop something, gravity controls." -Covey
The First principle of liberty as is described in the 5000 Year Leap is Natural Law. Ezra Taft Benson has been a great influence. His statement that "rights are either God given as part of the political plan, or they are granted by government as part of the political plan" had great impact on me. Understanding these two choices and the one the Founding fathers understood is of vital importance on whether we choose life and liberty or tyranny, bondage, captivity and death. In my opinion the belief that "We are endowed by our Creator" has got to be one of the most significant and correct "political" philosophies of those who believe in Liberty.
If you could change one thing about Washington, what would it be?
Ben: The one thing I would change for sure would be allowing competition in money. You cannot have a true society without a freedom of choice with money. Whoever has control over money can control just about everything. Also by the government forcing a monopoly with the money supply also allows the government to do many immoral things by racking up debt with money that is only valuable because the government says so. It's hard to have a free society when the government dictates what must be used as money.
Paul: Remove all the abusive powers that are not granted in Article 1 Section 8 of the constitution.
"The Constitution should contain a provision that every officer of the Government who should neglect or refuse to extend the protection guaranteed in the Constitution should be subject to capital punishment"
We often see so many negative political trends, can you think of a positive trend which has come about in the past few years?
Ben: I think the biggest positive trend with politics lately is that the people are no longer just sitting down and letting government do business as usual. The tea party is a very large group of citizens that are trying to protest the government in a peaceful manor and let Washington know that they are not well pleased with the never ending spending. People will always be more powerful than government in the end. People in the end will always prevail. That is why laws that take from individual freedom eventually don't last. Keynesian laws always fail.
Paul: One positive trend has been the growing awareness that something is wrong in our country. More people are seeking to understand true principles of liberty.