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Issue 037
Pagan Moontide of Vulcan 14, Anno Domini 2020
With my whole heart I seek you; let me not wander from your commandments! Psalm 119

Artwork: "True Victory"  Artist: Rob Joseph

Living the Self-Evident Dream

Two officers. Cold blood. Without provocation.

Activism in 2020. 

Congressman Dan Creshaw’s words are enough:

The fearful rhetoric of hatred for Trump has wrought this. 

Some hate him so much they will hate that sentence on principle.

This principle is called "the rhetoric of blame."

I do not blame Rev. Dr. John Nunes, President of the LCMS affiliate Concordia University NY, for appearing in the twitter feed of Fordham-sporting @drantbradley at a Black Lives Matter rally, and so inadvertently also winding up the target of a Pulpit and Pen hit piece calling out the terminal stage cancer of lukewarmness eating at the LCMS’s historic orthodoxies.


I didn’t write the hit piece. Neither did I march with a Marxist organization that proclaims the destruction of the Fourth Commandment as central to its message, as Dr. Nunes chose to do. 

The most Dr. Nunes will suffer is a few mean emails from some midwestern people he doesn’t know, and maybe a phone call or two from slightly higher powers cautioning care where appearances and donors are concerned. 

The LCMS as a whole won’t be too bothered. We are all quite happily quibbling in the engine room about the proper way to light a pilot while the storms of darkness descend upon our bottom lines.

Because we’ve forgotten the dream. We’ve forgotten what it means to burn with zeal for the atonement of your countrymen, and against all risks foreign and domestic, to put your skin in the game of your religion, to be dissatisfied with the lack of its application, until its symbols reign from sea to shining sea. 

I still have that dream, given to me, a white child growing up in city-scaped northeast Portland, by a black preacher of non-violent resistance, as the antidote to all abuses of authority, because it is also the divine and holy warfare of a people certain that God’s own justice is on their side. 

That black preacher inspired me with words about a glorious world wherein little black boys and little white girls joined hands and live together in harmony. I looked around the classroom to see the black and white faces of my very racially mixed friends. 

We were living the dream.

That was 1986. 

This is 2020, and I’m a liar if I don’t say that today it is only a dream that my five white children might live side by side among people who refuse to judge or be judged by the color of any skin because they live in a world where they are being judged for theirs

Yes, it is but a fast fleeting dream that that they would be judged by their ethnically diverse neighbors according to the content of character as shown in the conduct of the person.

For all this, and not unmindful of the two-faced history and treachery-laden annals of the American justice system, neither shall I forget the words of the Son of God, “Bless those who hate you; Do good to those who oppress you,” as well as the words of that black man martyred shortly after he preached its meaning to an entirely peaceful protest: 

Unearned suffering is redemptive.”

If “these truths we hold to be self-evident” are no longer self-evident to the drugged up and sloganized masses of first-world snowflakes tearing down their own houses in fits and starts, then we must invest boldly in their self-evidence again, at least among ourselves, lest it be stolen right out from under us.

We must have the dream.

We must dream that the burning heat of riots and racism, and the sweltering, wrath of “mother earth” gone amuck, the swarming white noise of black hate brewing up out of the greedy cowardice which ever percolates in swamps both deep and shallow - we must dream that these both can and shall be transfigured by the awakening of an army made ready to stand firm in the powerful posture of the brotherhood, philanthropy and neighborly intent because we dream the dream of a religious vigor, born in a people who will never be satisfied with this vain world’s kingdoms because we have seen the particularly glorious light of a better one.

A kingdom founded on a new rhetoric: the rhetoric not of blame, but of grace.

“From every mountainside let freedom ring” is the dream that wickedness cannot long rest upon any land wherein righteous men dwell, for they themselves, as God’s witnesses, will not let it be so. A righteous man rarely stands alone for long.

One tyrant topples another. In the mud, with the salt and the darkness, in suburban hoods and country townships, in busy streets and quiet places, among the 1% and in debt with the rest of us, the righteous man is not done dreaming. 

Regardless of the color of his skin, the righteous man always dreams, always resists the enemy, always seeks a better civilization by peacefully, constantly and with great and positive prejudice talking his enemies into being his brothers. 

Or dying trying.

That’s the dream.

Live free. You are immortal now, and he won’t be long anyway. 

Rev. Fisk

Quick Hits for the Eyebuds

🕶️ Oakley's crazy "over the top" sunglasses are back

👺 John Favreau’s VR game set to release

🐝 Honey bee venom shows promise in killing breast cancer cells

🦾 T-Mobile showed their 5G capacity by using a remotely-operated robot to give a tattoo

🦩 The crazy genius that is flamingos eating

🌇 Under an orange colored sky: wildfire footage

💰 The Australian Mint is pressing "donation dollars

🐶 Awww... helicopter pup

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C2 + e = m?

Scientists have used the Hadron Collider to try to make matter out of light. Let’s say, it takes a lot of energy! Speaking of energy, a British energy tech company has come up with a unique way to store energy. They are using gravity to move huge weights up and down in pressurized shafts deep in the ground.

More power play... Nuclear power plants in Illinois likely to close.

A foal born at the San Diego Zoo recently is the result of cloning efforts by scientists who are aiming to bring genetic diversity to threatened species. The DNA used was from a Prezwalski stallion and had been stored in the "Frozen Zoo” for 40 years.

Identity politics is the joykiller

Hollywood is in the news lately with a judge ending decades old decrees that prevented large movie makers from monopolizing theater chains. The decrees had been in place since the 1940's as a result of a government antitrust action. Other changes might be afoot as laid out in article for The Federalist which suggests that sex scenes may be gone from the big screen for a while, as social distancing arrives on set. 

Pastor Ted Giese appeared on Issues Etc. to weigh in on Hollywood’s latest attempt at self-regulating, which is predictably in the progressive direction. The new rules mean that Academy Awards will only be considered for movies that have an acceptable level of diversity in their cast, crew and the movie plot itself. What could go wrong? After all, it was Harvey Weinstein who proclaimed that Hollywood has “the best moral compass."

A longer trailer for the 2020 adaptation of Dune has dropped. The optics and the star-studded cast are impressive, but whether it will please fans of the book remains to be seen. Actor Jason Momoa thinks Idaho Duncan, his character in Dune, would beat Khal Drogo, who he plays in Game of Thrones. Not sure how that works, but no doubt people would pay money to see it!

Anti-Social Media

"The Social Dilemma,” a documentary-drama premiered on Netflix last week and VentureBeat did a write up of some of the main ideas. The incredible influence of online technology is concerning to anyone who is paying attention:

“Never before in history have 50 designers — 20- to 35-year-old white guys in California — made decisions that would have an impact on 2 billion people,” Harris tells viewers. “Two billion people will have thoughts that they didn’t intend to have because a designer at Google said ‘This is how notifications work on that screen that you wake up to in the morning.'” 

Engineers working for Google and Facebook in the early years, offer insight into the intentions behind the technology and the unintended outcomes. “When we were making the Like button, our entire motivation was ‘Can we spread positivity and love in the world?’...The idea that fast-forward to today, and teens would be getting depressed when they don’t have enough Likes, or it could be leading to political polarization, was nowhere on our radar.”

The article concedes that online technology is simultaneously "utopia and dystopia.” Perhaps the most accurate observation is that the technology is not, on its own, an existential threat but that “It’s the technology’s ability to bring out the worst in society. And the worst in society [is] the existential threat.” 

Cue: Rev Fisk’s points about media ecology and his warnings for Christians to be intentional about what they feed their minds on. What is the tool doing for us and what is the tool doing to us?

You can't please all of the Woke all of the time

Poor Mark Zuckerberg doesn’t seem to be able to catch a break at the moment. Facebook has been accused for many years of stacking the algorithm against conservatives or even removing content from right-leaning pages (just ask Live Action and other pro-life groups). In a somewhat ironic twist, the social media giant is now being accused of being a right-wing echo chamber by Progressives. It might be a case of the revolution eating its own, as the Left moves ever more left and leaves Zuckerberg’s attempts at being moderate behind. It is a strange phenomenon when both sides are convinced they’re losing.

Pew Research concluded that most Americans think social media can help build movements but that it is also a distraction that promotes slacktivism. When it came to questions regarding giving under-represented voices a platform and holding the powerful accountable, it seems conservatives were always doubtful, but even left-leaning respondents were less optimistic now than previously.

Hypocrisy ain’t all it’s cracked up to be

An interesting article from Unherd this week points out one of the main disconnects when the Right engages the Progressive Left. The writer, Ben Sixsmith, suggests that while conservatives rightly point out hypocrisy on the Left ("an environmentalist who takes a plane, or an advocate of socialism with a second home”), it is largely a useless tactic:

"Right-wingers often argue, correctly, that Left-wingers use charges of personal bigotry as a means of avoiding difficult debates. Yet conservatives often do the same with the charges of personal inconsistency. The difference is that bigotry is a powerful charge, while inconsistency has fewer such damning connotations."

Sixsmith concludes that, "One should have enough pride in one’s own beliefs not to spend all of one’s time holding others to theirs.”  While pointing out hypocrisy might change someone’s mind, the writer asks, "If your opponents lived with scrupulous consistency, would you have to admit that they were right all along?” He makes a good point.

The awesome picture for this meme came from The Book of Revelation and is called "A Mighty Messenger"

Who watches the watchers?

This handy website provides detailed information about members of the Legislature, including their voting records on many bills. Gene Veith has detailed the bias of fact-checkers who have tried to downplay Biden’s extreme abortion policies. Apparently, terminating a baby in the third trimester doesn’t really count as an abortion. Lord, have mercy!

A website has been set up to engage citizens in bringing members of Antifa to justice.

Google and Apple have made good on their promise to include contact tracing abilities in their updates. iPhone iOS 13.5 includes a "COVID Exposure Notification feature” which can be found at "Settings > Privacy > Health > COVID-19 Exposure Logging”. Reuters rejected the idea that the feature triggers automatically or without consent. It seems you have to install a public health app to use the feature, so do your homework if you’re concerned!

While we’re talking about COVID, news forwarded to us by Rev. Fisk points to the many studies that are concluding that lockdowns don’t work. "Extraordinary measures require extraordinary evidence. And the burden of proof is on those who seek to use the coercive power of the state to force people into their homes, cripple the economy, and abolish countless basic freedoms for the duration. Have the advocates for lockdowns made their case?” It would seem they have not.

And from Rev Fisk's inbox: 

Big trouble in China

Speaking of  extraordinary measures...

Jake Tapper has called out Disney and the NBA for not taking a harder line with the Chinese Communist Party. The revenue from Chinese audiences is massive, but rather than use their influence to try to bring about change, these corporations seem to overlook the CCP's treatment of its people.  

Disney even thanked the Chinese government in the credits of the live action version of Mulan, which was shot in Uighur provinces. Helen Raleigh at The Federalist laid out reasons why she's boycotting the film, detailing how the story has changed from one of personal empowerment to one of loyalty to authorities.

Only Illuminati Need Apply
Your Reaction Highlights


The bullet point on "wild polio" eradication in Africa lacked background of the cost to human lives. The corporate media driven climate anticipating "relief" from coronavirus via vaccine has placed this news item strategically to create a celebratory air. Consider having Newsletter Staff read any of the links on this page. The BBC article demonstrates the usual Big Pharma/Public Health Technocrat strategies using inaccurate stats, fear, compassion, poster children, and celebrating medical technology as a god.

Please also consider that the reported vaccine caused Polio cases are dramatically under reported due to political pressures to kowtow to "generous globalist" donors while wild polio cases are grossly over reported.

Will Mad Monday be a Corporate shill for "the solution to coronavirus" by promoting a fast tracked vaccine, likely tainted with animal DNA and chimeric viruses? Celebrating any vaccine without true informed consent and safety and efficacy testing on board is unwarranted. How would that be caring for one's neighbor's well-being to encourage taking a jab that well could result in cancer (see SV-40 articles on NVIC website), auto-immune, or create hyper vigilance to the shot's target leaving the person weakened for the next lab created monster to take down a percentage of the population?

Thank you,

A Good Word: Rec's from Rev. Fisk

These Illuminated Scripture Journals were recommended to us by Us, the Chill member Heidi.  Every other page is intentionally left blank for journaling, or maybe even Smart Noting?  Check out last week's SMChill to see Rev. Fisk drool over these beautiful books.

Promo of Friends

Speaking of Smart Noting, the life-changing technique is catching on.  Pastor Josh Ulm, a Mad Christian who has been featured on SMChill, is developing a workshop to teach his congregation how to Smart Note the Bible.  In doing so, he has written this pamplet Reading the Bible like a Superhero: one simple technique to supercharge your study of God's Word.*  Thank you for sharing your work and encouraging Mad Christians to get into the Word!

*Please note this is a rough manuscript and has not been theologically reviewed by Rev. Fisk or the Mad Mondays Team.

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Let us pray:  O God, our refuge and strength, the author of all godliness, hear the devout prayers of Your Church, especially in times of persecution, and grant that what we ask in faith we may obtain; through Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.