Monday, August 31, 2009

Warren's Attorneys have had enough of Rebecca Musser's evasions

No, you'll come here and be deposed.
"It must be remembered that authorities from the state of Texas caused all of these problems to begin with through their voluntary decision to provide evidence from the Texas searches to officials in the state of Arizona who were in the midst of prosecuting Mr. Jeffs, when Texas officials were under no obligation to do so, and when the defendant had specifically advised officials from the state of Arizona of the serious potential problems any such exposure would generate. Texas law enforcement authorities then compounded these problems when they instructed Ms. Musser not to answer relevant questions relating to the defense, thus necessitating the motion to depose Ms. Musser. It does not take a genius to figure out that the idea of holing Ms. Musser's in Austin, Texas, presumably did not originate with her. This is part of the difficulty when you have a listed witness who is also an informant for law enforcement in another state. Given the machinations of the Texas authorities thus far, the defendant submits that the court should not be inclined to do them any favors by ordering Ms. Musser's deposition to take place at their convenience.

The defendant disputes the State's contention that "Becky is cooperative." [Response, p.4]. Defense counsel has made numerous requests over the summer for Ms. Musser to name a date and time at which she would comply with this Court's ordered deposition even telephonically if Texas law enforcement was not present in the room while all other counsel were on the telephone. Although it is true that the undersigned counsel Michael Piccarreta was spending most of the summer months in Oregon, during that period of time he was trying to arrange for either a telephonic deposition of Ms. Musser or for travel to Boise, Idaho, specifically to accommodate Ms. Musser so that she would not have to travel at all. Indeed, even while in Oregon, counsel works daily on his cases and returns to Arizona for a week each month. Yet Ms. Musser refused to provide parties with a firm date for her deposition. Apparently, Ms. Musser acquiesced to the Texas law enforcement authorities that they be present in person for her deposition. It is no the presence of Texas law enforcement officials that requires Ms. Musser, counsel for the defendant, and counsel for the State to travel, despite the fact that the State of Texas is not a party to these proceedings. Defense counsel submits that all the above facts show that Ms. Musser has not been cooperative and her request to be deposed in Austin, Texas, at the request of Texas authorities, is simply unreasonable and renders her uncooperative within the meaning of Rule 15.3 of the Arizona Rules of Criminal Procedure."
From the latest court filing in Mohave County.
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Like we're surprised.

Postponed again, (apparently) but no new date was offered.
Navigating El Paso county's court system is difficult. It's public record, but they don't want to tell you anything, and instead, bounce you around like a beach ball. You can see nothing happened today for Rozita, I don't know what the link will look like tomorrow, but for today it shows that it was canceled/called off/vacated. The individual I talked to seemed to confirm it had not been canceled or vacated, but was not forthcoming about the new trial date, if any.
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Sunday, August 30, 2009

Were the Kings of Israel sinners to have more than one wife?

You've been taught that they were. Were they?
In a post that involves such fine points as "Hiphel stems" and "Imperfect aspects" of a Hebrew verb, and other far more obvious proofs, Vermont Polygamy continues it's examinations of the arguments of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church, as made by one of their prominent theologians and professors of the Hebrew Language; Stewart "Woody" Lauer, read more.
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Can We Stop Taking Legal Advice From This Guy Now?

I'm going to qualify this by saying I'm NOT a lawyer, but I don't think Wikipedia has this wrong.
So with the heavy qualification of, "I don't believe everything I read on the internet," let's go to the record:
Coram Non Judice - "The information that I have received is that the Utah Bar has approved noted Denton attorney Natalie Malonis' application to appear Pro Hoc Vice in the case of Jessop v. Jessop, and that Carolynn's local attorney has filed a motion and order in the case sponsoring Malonis' appearance. This may correspond with the upcoming hearing on the matter in Judge Walther's court in Schleicher County, Texas that is currently scheduled for September 28th.

I wonder if Grandpa Bile Medvecky's post on Pro Hac Vice [sic]* gave Malonis the idea to appear for Carolyn in the Utah court? Thanks, Bill, that was a good idea..."
Except, for this interesting tid bit from the "Wiktionary: "pro hoc vice" is a common MISSPELLING of "pro hac vice."

Bill Medvecky appears to be RIGHT

Whoever, or Whatever TxBluesMan is, he/she is not right.

Feel free to advise your Modern Pharisee. I could have it wrong, I'm not a lawyer. But if I'm right, whatever Blues is, is at best, a bad lawyer.

* Means "spelling in context," meaning the author is quoting as spelled by the one he quotes and generally meant to question the spelling found "in context." To note something [sic] is to suggest one of two things, that there is an alternative and legitimate spelling, or that the author quoting another author (for it must be spelled) is saying the quoted author is probably WRONG in their spelling choice. From this flows the common misunderstanding (just as in the hac/hoc controversy) that it means "spelling in-correct." Functionally, after examination, this is usually what is being claimed but not strictly what [sic] means, as it's true meaning is more polite.
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Saturday, August 29, 2009

What you wanna bet it's delayed again?

Shoot YOURSELF in the leg, go to jail for two years and lose a lucrative income. Kill dogs (done regularly overseas for dinner), lose lucrative job, go bankrupt, lose even more lucrative endorsements, go to jail for two years. Threaten 439 kids and narrowly miss killing them?
Write blog posts about how the FLDS are brainwashing children and abusing them. At least, the blogger puporting to be Rozita does.

All of this suggests that this scheduled probation violation hearing, at least didn't go against Rozita. Look down the page about half way, she's right next to Plaxico (What 2nd Amendment rights?) Burress.

You really can't depend on the Colorado Springs Gazette which has taken a yawning attitude towards it's currently most famous adoptive daughter. They've done two stories on her, both sourced from the AP in the last year. Some local reporting.

It now looks as if the Ruling of the Suppression of Evidence is probably going to come this Friday. (Why Mr. Pharisee would it be this Friday? Because it's a long holiday weekend and it'll get buried!) Either that or as has been suggested by Anti FLDS forces, Walther will rule on the evidence suppression in each case individually as they come up in trial. This is important because of my predictive rule on FLDS related cases:
"If Allen (Steed) plea bargains, (Warren Jeffs') rape conviction ceases to be wet concrete and sets. If Warren is snugly in jail on felony rape for a while, panic eases for the prosecutions in other venues because he won't be going anywhere. Avoidance is less necessary for Texas with regard to Rozita, and they may choose to dismiss her 'minor' misdemeanor case as Utah and Arizona already have, without much investigation, Rozita then can say she didn't violate her probation with the call to YFZ in April of 2008 and she doesn't have her deferred sentencing deal processed, and goes free. So expect David Foley to try to delay things again. It's his specialty in Colorado Law."
Allen legally flipped off the prosecution this year, just like he did a year ago, but this time upped the ante, chosing to go for outright dismissal of the case based on the statute of limitations.

Since nothing, no report at all, came out of the probation violation hearing last week, I'm guessing (that's guessing, not absolutely stating) that we have another trial delay on tap for Monday. Seriously, was this ever a real trial date? Starting a trial the week BEFORE the Labor Day Weekend?

Only a few things only can come out of such an inconvenient date. Another delay, or some form of deferred sentencing agreement, dismissal or plea bargain. It is kind of hard to plea bargain down the extremely minor charge Rozita already faces. But again, Rozita has brought a gun to a knife fight, continues to manuever in the court system better than Bernie Madoff did and will probably delay this all, again.

Texas must resolve it's issues, before Rozita can resolve hers. Utah must resolve their issues too. So must Arizona.
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Friday, August 28, 2009

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Clunker Cash to be Taxed as Income? I did not know that Captain Obvious!

I really should have known this, but I did not. And I signed up every customer in our dealership to the "Cash for Clunkers" paperwork.
I had no idea the money would be shown as INCOME on your 2009 income tax return. $4500.00 given to you without withholding withheld? That'll stink come 2010. At least that's the way Shawn Hannity explained it this evening on Fox.

I cannot find exact corroboration for this claim yet, but it wouldn't surprise me. Some of the stories I found said that state sales tax applied. Few said that it was subject to income tax. One source said that was absolutely wrong.
Associated Content - "Cash for Clunkers taxable income rumors are false! Cash for Clunkers taxable income rumors are spreading around the internet like wildfire as several internet blogs have started claiming that there will be unseen taxes on the program.

These internet blogs are stating that the Cash for Clunkers income is taxable, and that people will have to pay taxes on the $3,500 or $4,500 that they received in the form of an income tax. These blogs are hoping that they can scare people into coming to their sites to give them hits, but in reality, those blogs are just spreading mis-information about a program that thousands of Americans have already taken advantage."
I didn't buy under the clunker deal, so it won't affect me. None of the paperwork I had customers sign had that disclosure. In Vermont there was no sales tax charged on the Clunker Cash.

You might want to contact your tax preparation service, but I'd wait a week so that you can skip the rush.
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Meaningless daily progress report. (UPDATED)

Got up late. Rare. Showered, Shaved, posted, wife came home for lunch.
We discussed her day. I finished dressing, walked her back to work, and noticed it is a wonderfully cool day outside. Got the mail. Walked back, did the dishes. I will now move to the porch and plug in there, and see if the outlet works. If not, I'll move back upstairs. I'm amused be the local station's automation failure where there hasn't been anything on for the last 10 minutes.

UPDATE: I moved back upstairs and started arguing with readers of Brooke's blog. I also completed reading background material for my next post at Vermont Polygamy.
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Nothing to see here, move along

Recently a commenter on one of my posts here at Modern Pharisee suggested that the high traffic volume was due to so many people "watching" me.
One take on that comment would be a paranoid "watch out" (which wasn't by the way my first thought, it just occurred to me as I was typing) and the other would be the sort of laughable paranoia of those watching. My organization consist of me, the rest being informants.

If you fall into the latter category, oh please, just GO AWAY, find a life
. I in turn will find one of my own. The quick exodus of freaked out paranoid watchers would leave me devoid of viewers and I'd get the message. Today is (God willing) set aside for several writing projects that history tells me I will be fortunate to complete one of, much less all of them. The wife is at work, I have a day off, and when the fuzz clears from my mind, perhaps I can make some headway. It's like that at 55 for me. I was full of ideas yesterday, but distracted by that which I should be distracted, my gainful employment. Good days, bad days the story goes, and good ones don't always line up with the opportunity to pursue my chosen unprofitable vocation. Make that hobby.

Frankly? I'd rather play chess. The simple order and complexities of the game attract me. Testing myself against the skills of others sharpens what little mental pencil I may have left It's fun, it's social. I'm sure I could stroll around Montpelier and find someone who wants to play. Maybe someday the interaction would turn to something important like "Know Christ." "Choose life, in order that you may live, you and your descendants." I repeatedly listen to the song on days like this, that I have plugged in on the top of my blog. Surely, there is "Something More Than This."

When I was younger, I was introduced to Francis Schaeffer by a combination of Wesley Wentworth and by extension, my mother. Schaeffer moved to Switzerland, to make a long story short, and set up shop, hawked his odd ideas (none of which included polygyny), prayed, and got support. I've moved to Vermont, set up shop, with an admittedly more narrow agenda, prayed, and got nowhere. So far. This is sort of my model. I do not have a desire to do organized fund raising, I've got a large enough megaphone. People know I'm here. They know what I'm doing, they know why.

So to digress into site stats again, the Modern Pharisee moved into the top 300,000 of web sites in the world (297,862nd). This is a new high and again, I am continually astounded by such movement. I'm bad at promoting my blog, there are a number of things I could be doing to make myself more visible, and yet, I trend upward, also hitting (if I recall correctly) a new high of 54,476th in the United States. This is bigger than a lot of small newspapers. Ok, really small newspapers, but still. My companion site, Vermont Polygamy has been trending towards the top million category, and also continues to trend upward.

So I go back to my meandering about Wes Wentworth, my mom, and Francis Schaeffer. It is Schaeffer's influence that has led me to think I should do diligently what I have been led to do, pray for support, and see what God does. Hence I have not blogged regularly about financial support until this summer, and have become (I am sure in the mind of some) increasingly grating about it of late. I've not created an email dunning list. I've just hung a PayPal shingle out (over a year ago) and I've let people know where they can email me if they want to do something about it by snail mail. Namely, I can provide a physical address for them to drop something to me.

The money would go to full time support of the Vermont Polygamy effort. When I am alone, even on bad days, I can churn out a lot of passably fair work, and I can more visibly pursue the confrontation of the church, and the setting up of a legalization scenario in Vermont. Or New Hamsphire. They are right next door you know. I could organize conferences of Christian Polygynists, or attend them. Etc.

The thundering response to this less and less subtle hinting is, well, not thundering. I've received two PayPal donations, one of which was to pay for my lobbyist registration. A whopping $70.00. Both from the same man. Namely, I have $10.00 to show from a reader's support. I have to fill out complicated confusing lobbyist paperwork to report on even the financial activity that I don't have.

I have something of a "contract" with my employer, and it runs out in 6 months. I don't lose my job, but it becomes easier for me to lose that job, in 6 months. Vermont. In winter. Unemployed. 2600 miles from what I think of as home. This is a looming fear.

Popularity as I continue to mention, is it's own worst enemy. I blog with full record of who I am. I advocate controversial views, with full record of who I am. There is an onrushing turnover point at which I will doubtless be fortunate to be offered the choice of continuing this, or giving it up. More likely, I would be told that my private activities and reputation are not compatible with the goals of a retail organization. I would entirely understand. I would be like Aesop's dog, losing that which I grasped for, and that which I had.

The stated goal of this effort made over three years ago was roughly "pick up, where the reformation left off." I think the marriage issue is the tip of the spear in that work. It leads to a better understanding of family relationships, which are foundational to the life of the church, and it leads to less cultural interpretation of the Old Testament, the majority of the Bible. It might also lead to less divorce, a tragedy that has touched my life as well as many others who are or used to be in church.

I may be wrong, but I can't see the Modern Pharisee going on in the same direction, and with the same resources. A fish or cut bait moment is rapidly approaching. I don't know when it will occur but it almost certainly will if I live to see another day. So far, my experience is that one day follows after the next, but I have no illusions. Life is authored by God and it's end is dictated in his book. At my age I'm betting that I'm in the latter part of that book.

There are emerging voices on the polygyny front that may take the tiny rag that passes for the mantle I wear. They are younger, and perhaps better ones. I will happily cut bait. This is something though, that you the reader chooses for me. I continue to need legal help, and financial help to go forward. If I can't, I can watch someone else, and happily drop a check in the mail once in a while.

I bluster, report, rage (pick one!), you decide.
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Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Kopechne Driver Dies (UPDATED w/Day by Day Cartoon)

The Swimmer joined his passenger late last night and the Senate Democrat majority loses one vote.
And Senator Edward Kennedy is reunited with his brothers in death, passing away from natural causes, at 77, his life sustained for many months by uncommon health care, unlike the kind he tried up until his last breath, to foist off on us.

Brain Cancer.
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Tuesday, August 25, 2009

And Arizona (Matt Smith, the Prosecutor) DOESN'T want Rebecca Musser Interviewed (still).

It would be my preference that not all prosecutors want to win all their cases. Certainly the "Innocence Project" has evidence for why that should be.
If the case never comes to court because of something discovered before trial, wouldn't that be good? Matt Smith however, routinely opposes the interview of key witnesses to at least the THEORY of Warren Jeffs innocence.

I mean, if there's nothing there, there's nothing there, right? Is Matt Rebecca's champion or a prosecutor? Read his response.
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Monday, August 24, 2009

Now Warren's attorneys want Rebecca Musser (still).

It's proving very difficult to depose certain people, if you're Warren Jeffs, but this attorneys keep at it. More →

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What you wanna bet Dan Fischer is the Highest Bidder?

Or maybe one of the highest? Depleting the cash resources of the FLDS? The Berry Knoll sale is approved to the highest bidder by the Judge.
KSTU/AP - "A Utah judge has ordered the sale of a 400-acre parcel of land that is part of a trust established by followers of jailed polygamous sect leader Warren Jeffs. In a ruling issued Monday, 3rd District Court Judge Denise Lindberg says a liquidity crisis of the United Effort Plan Trust makes the sale of Berry Knoll necessary.

Her order calls for the northern Arizona property to be sold to the highest bidder."
This should be interesting to watch, and heinous as well.
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Sunday, August 23, 2009

I just KNEW it....

White House Reveals Obama Is Bipolar, Has Entered Depressive Phase More →

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Why your Modern Pharisee is NOT anonymous

There is no danger of me being "outed."
I am not anonymous so anyone thinking to gain leverage over me by finding out who I am, and publishing that fact, has been beaten the punch, by me. For those that smear, and make it personal, the danger is always there.
The NY Daily News - "Speaking out for the first time since a court order forced Google to reveal her identity, blogger Rosemary Port tells the Daily News that model Liskula Cohen should blame herself for the uproar.

'This has become a public spectacle and a circus that is not my doing,' said Port, whose "Skanks in NYC" site branded the 37-year-old Cohen an 'old hag.'

'By going to the press, she defamed herself,' Port said.

'Before her suit, there were probably two hits on my Web site: One from me looking at it, and one from her looking at it,' Port said. 'That was before it became a spectacle. I feel my right to privacy has been violated.'

The pretty 29-year-old Fashion Institute of Technology student added that she's furious at Google for revealing her identity, so much so that she plans to file a $15 million federal lawsuit against the Web giant.

'When I was being defended by attorneys for Google, I thought my right to privacy was being protected,' Port said."
Hat Tip to Ann Althouse. Other than being who you are and saying who you are, it's probably best not to pick on people, over the internet depending on the cyber shadows, to hide you.
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Are You For or Against Polygyny?

The time to fish or cut bait rapidly approaches.
Popularity makes me my own worst enemy. Notoriety without an income is a bad smell to most. The Pharisee hit 302,947th in the world (again, my highest ranking) and 55,133rd in the United States. My companion blog, "Vermont Polygamy" hit 1,341,783rd, and 203,825th. Not great shakes really compared to the Mother Blog, but it's bigger in terms of traffic than the blog of Hank Hanegraaff, the "Bible Answer Man" who drives traffic to his blog with several other sites, including a radio program.

Hank LIVES on donations and book sales.


More at Vermont Polygamy, "Interlude and Panhandle."
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Saturday, August 22, 2009

Friday, August 21, 2009

Motion to Depose witnesses in Arizona in Jeffs Case

I couldn't tell you what it means yet, except that it's redacted, meaning some names or information has been removed.
I thought I would give all of you a "heads up." You can see it at Mohave County.
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Thursday, August 20, 2009

And now the State of Texas files in the Motion to Suppress

Ok, count me as confused. First Texas files a grocery list of bare "facts" and a laundry list of case law with no explanation.
Then the FLDS files, now Texas files again? Is this the Ghost Written opinion of Walther?

Also, after reading the filing, it seems that the state of Texas asserts that no one has standing to dispute the evidence. They also seem to think if they order up a search warrant on an annonymous tip that Osama bin Laden is in your home, they can take anything they find there and try you with it.
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Three Filings/Motions at Mohave County

It's been a busy day in the case of Warren Jeffs.
Some of the filings at Mohave County have to do with an audio recording, and virulent hate mail directed at Warren Jeffs.
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Clunkers Clunked

Th-th-th-that's all Folks.
Cash for clunkers is done.
Fox News - The Transportation Department said (today) the government will wind down the program on Monday at 8 p.m. EDT. Car buyers can receive rebates of $3,500 or $4,500 for trading in older vehicles for new, more fuel-efficient models.
Good Riddance. Obama declared the program a success beyond the administrations "wildest dreams." Apparently all Obama dreams about is spending money on foreign cars, which takes the money for good paying jobs on American Assembly lines and hands the money would have paid for them to good paying jobs on foreign assembly lines.

I guess what Obama meant by "Shovel Ready Jobs" was that he would take us off assembly lines (hard work), and give us Shovel Jobs (harder, lower paying work).
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Hatred is in the hearts of those who oppose the FLDS

If Warren Jeffs is a pedophile, he is a pedophile only by proxy, in legal terms.
This letter was sent to the Governor of Arizona. It was also sent to the Judge in Warren's case.
Wonder Window Washers, Inc.
State Licensed Home Builders Association
Member Chamber of Commerce
1728 Dayton Blvd.
Chattanooga, Tennessee 37405

PHONE (423) 870-1552
FAX (423) 266-0689

Governor Jan Brewer
1700 West Washington, 9th Floor
Phoenix, AZ 85007

Re: The enclosed article by the Associated Press which appeared yesterday in the Chattanooga Time Free Press, 08/05/09.

Dear Governor:

I am appalled by any state that would force-feed a cult leader who is a pedophile. Isn't it bad enough that hardworking taxpayers of your state have to pay for the incarceration of this animal? Why then double and triple their costs by adding all these emergency medical procedures? The upshot of this will be that the felon will wind up biting the hand that feeds him, literally! The Sheriff's Deputy will then spend days or weeks in the hospital recovering from blood poisoning.

And all this expense while the Country's in a recession. Governor

The man is a blight on society. He wants to die...let him!...and there's a fitting and proper end to the matter

Sincerely yours,

Mike Orlins, a nosey (but concerned) neighbor

CC: Superior Court Judge Steven Conn
Mohave County Sheriff's Office
I have added nothing, the only thing missing is the signature of Mr. Orlins ( ), which I cannot duplicate. It was in response to this article read in the Chattanooga Times Free Press, which he enclosed.
Jail force-feeding sect leader Jeffs
Doctor says Jeffs's vital signs are worsening because he's refusing to eat
The Associated Press
updated 9:18 p.m. ET, Tues., Aug 4, 2009

BEAVER, Utah - Polygamous sect leader Warren Jeffs is being force-fed in jail for the second time in less than a week after again refusing to eat, officials said Tuesday.

A former fugitive on the FBI's Most Wanted list, Jeffs was arrested in August 2006 during a traffic stop near Las Vegas. While in a southern Utah jail awaiting trial, he suffered from depression, dropped as much as 30 pounds and was hospitalized after an attempted suicide in January 2007.

Jeffs, 53, is the head of the Utah-based Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. He is jailed awaiting trial on charges related to alleged underage marriages involving sect girls.

Mohave County sheriff's spokeswoman Trish Carter said force feeding of Jeffs started Friday at the Kingman, Arizona, jail after it was found he was not eating. Jeffs subsequently started eating on his own again and continued doing so until Monday night, she said.

Refusing food and no longer urinating
But on Tuesday, Jeffs again refused to eat and is now being force-fed via a tube down his throat that delivers liquid nutrition, Carter said.

"Mr. Jeffs is closely being watched 24 hours a day," a statement from Carter said.

In a letter filed with the Mohave Superior Court on Friday, the jail's medical director said Jeffs had been refusing food and was no longer urinating. Medical Director Kirsten Mortenson said Jeffs' vital signs were worsening and he was suffering peripheral edema — the swelling of extremities like hands, feet and legs — brought on by "protein/calorie malnutrition."

"This deterioration will continue to accelerate and become harder to reverse the longer it persists," Mortenson wrote in a letter to Judge Steven F. Conn. "His death could be imminent without immediate medical intervention."

Contacted by cell phone Tuesday by The Associated Press, Mortenson said federal privacy laws prevented her from making any comment.

"I can't even tell you if I've seen him," she said.

Jeffs was moved to Kingman from the Utah State Prison in February 2008. In September 2007, a Utah jury convicted Jeffs of two counts of rape as an accomplice for his role in the 2001 marriage of an underage follower to her husband. He was sentenced to two consecutive prison terms of five years to life.

On Tuesday, Jeffs' Tucson, Arizona, attorney Michael Piccarreta said he did not know the status of his client's medical condition, but that the situation was not unusual.

"Mr. Jeffs is a deeply religious man and sometimes engages in lengthy religious practices while in jail. When he does, he declines food and beverages and this sometimes occurs," he said. "If you look at other religious and political people who have been wrongly incarcerated, you'll see others have gone through this."

‘There's not a lot of extra pounds’
Piccarreta, who represents Jeffs in two pending criminal cases, said he believed Mohave County handled the situation appropriately. Jeffs is more than 6 feet tall and has always been slight, Piccarreta noted.

"There's not a lot of extra pounds," he said.

Throughout his incarceration Jeffs has been known to fast and spend long periods on his knees in prayer.

Earlier this year, Mohave County's deputy jail director Bruce Brown told the AP that Jeffs had not had any significant health problems. Jeffs had been eating three meals a day and maintaining his weight, Brown said.

Jeffs is also facing criminal charges of bigamy and sexual assault of a child in Texas. The charges stem from information gathered by authorities during a raid on a church ranch near Eldorado last year.

The FLDS tie their religious roots to the early teachings of the mainstream Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and practice polygamy in arranged marriages. The Mormon church renounced plural marriages in 1890 as part of Utah's push for statehood. Self-described Mormon fundamentalists such as the FLDS believe polygamy will bring glorification in heaven.

Jeffs, who is revered as a prophet who communicates with God, commands a flock roughly 12,000 strong despite his incarceration. Church members live mostly in the twin border towns of Hildale, Utah and Colorado City, Arizona. The faith also has small enclaves in Texas, Colorado, South Dakota and near Bountiful, British Columbia.

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

The copy of the clipping says it is from the Chattanooga Times Free Press. This is the same sort of unreasoning blind hatred I see in the posts, and sites of "Coram Non Judice," and "FLDS Texas."
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Wednesday, August 19, 2009

The discussion continues, at Vermont Polygamy

Ten days ago I posted on my interaction with the Orthodox Presbyterian Church, and it's local body, Covenant Orthodox Presbyterian Church. More →

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Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Oh what a surprise....Favre back.

Since this was taken today, I'm going with "a picture says a thousand words." The Minnesota Coach is pictured here with Brett.
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This does my heart good. (UPDATED) Man at Obama rally with GUN.

He's packin' heat. Legal as the day is long.

Clearly from the point of view of the anchor, it would be mystifying if the man pictured with the AR-15 was anti Obama. I mean, after all, he's "African American."

I don't care one way or the other, there were several men packing there, and it was not the only AR-15 in the crowd. Reportedly, our "African American" friend said he carried the gun, because he could.

UPDATE: The man is clearly not an Obama Supporter. Hat tip to Pat Dollard at Young Americans.
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Stats Again

There is an external purpose to my fascination with statistics (site statistics).
Most polygynists and polygyny advocates are tarred with the social epithet that they are sexist, selfish, oversexed, etc. If that's true, that's what women want.

The most male dominated "poly" site that I know of is Don Milton's "Christian Marriage." Even that site's readership is overrepresented towards female readers, just not as much as mine, or "" I gather all of these "site insights" from looking at Alexa, the only commonly available site for comparing site size, site viewing behavior and demographics. I have no reason to believe that Alexa skews their demographic and traffic volume information in ways that apply unequally to the various sites I will mention today.

If you look at my site, it's demographics are heavily female. Younger female, with kids. Riding that wave I hit yet another "New High" in site statistics today, reaching a "World Wide" ranking of 305,499. That means there are 305,498 more popular sites (blogging or otherwise) across the World Wide Web. In the United States I have flirted for months with the "50 thousands" and today the Modern Pharisee is ranked 56,680th, again meaning there are 56,679 more popular sites in the United States.

I keep mentioning this because I continue to be typecast by my opponents as plowing obscure and worthless areas of belief and doctrine in the Reformed world that no one cares about. As the Pharisee grows, odd objectionable and misunderstood name and all, the site now ranks higher than perhaps every Presbyterian, Conservative (Reformed) denominations websites rolled together. Site rankings are like the Richter scale, A site ranked 30,000th does not have twice as many viewers as a site ranked 60,000th. It has an exponentially larger viewership. The OPC is ranked 128,203rd in this country, the PCA 279,253rd, and the other "Reformed" and "Presbyterian" denominations in the United States are considerably smaller. Thus if you rolled them all together, they might not equal the Modern Pharisee.

So yeah, site rank is not church attendance and I don't pretend that it is, but it reflects comparative interest when it comes to subject matter. Frankly, as a Polygynist Presbyterian, I seem to hold more reader interest than than all of my official Puritan brethren combined. I think this is important because it means the issue is a bigger, nastier crazy relative in the attic than the Reformation would like to admit. So much so that it might be the "crazies" that are keeping the sane relative chained up.

So next up, how would a site compare to the Pharisee and other polygynist sites if it opposed me vehemently on doctrine? Puritan Board? Predominately male. PCA? Slightly female. OPC? Testosterone City. Theologyweb, a site I have been cast out of, reeks of testosterone. Similarly the "Fighting Fundamentalist Forum" a site that approached nearly violent opposition to the idea of polygyny, drenched in male pheromones., James Patrick Holding's combative site, is a men's locker room. And so on. Only the PCA seems to attract a slightly female vibe to it's official web site. Everyone else, guy city.

Some other interesting facts. "Pyromaniacs," which is a Calvinist, heavily promoted blog complete with multiple scholarly authors and professional graphics, is far behind your Pharisee in the United States (94,269th) and is about to be caught in the "World Wide" arena. They have all the tech help a blogger could want. They have been known to delete comments I make regarding marriage. Their readership? Older men. Probably overrepresented by clergy.

Verum Serum? Also a blog I have commented on extensively and treated in a way I would characterize as abusive and dismissive. Multiple authors. Tech Savvy (just about anyone is by comparison to me) and choking on the dust rising from behind the Pharisee's camel. Male, older, probably skewed towards lay people, deacons or elders with no kids at home, it is also promoted and possessed of many advantages I don't have. Opposed to polygyny.

To sum all of this up, I think a lot of men are more opposed to polygyny than many women are. Superficially women seem to put up a good fight against it, but I am beginning to believe this is centered around the fear of losing something materially, or being shoved aside as people. If these fears were calmed, and if the social stigma (also another big issue) was not as great, women would more quickly accept polygyny, than men would. It's largely about the counter intuitive culture blinders we have on, regarding polygyny.

Ultimately the biggest losers in polygyny are not the women, as we are told, the biggest losers are men. Lousy men. The "vibe" I have picked up on from these men is the deeply misogynistic feeling that they have a "right" to a woman. The reasoning goes, if a man is married, then it's hands off another woman. Not for her sake, but for the sake of the unmarried man. I'm going to inject, without discussion the idea that there are less "good men" available, than good women. If a "good woman" is willing to share a husband, then bad men have less women to choose from. Maybe none at all. The superficial evidence seems to suggest this is the case. Whatever the public perception, the survey says, women are more interested in polygyny in terms of their actions, than are men.
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Monday, August 17, 2009

How Should Michael Vick be Welcomed Back to the NFL?

I think the fans should
arm themselves with slingshots and dog biscuits. First one to hit his helmet with such a missile, wins.

Poodle Pumper. Hound Hitter. Pooch Puncher.

Let's see if someone spends time in jail for that.
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Sunday, August 16, 2009

The Lying Press Strikes Again. Republicans are UNNECESSARY to "Heath Care Reform"

67% of those persons who voted FOR Obama in last November's election, thought REPUBLICANS, not Democrats, controlled congress. Why? In part because of lying articles like this.
Just read the highlighted phrases and words.
Yahoo/AP - "Bowing to Republican pressure and an uneasy public, President Barack Obama's administration signaled Sunday it is ready to abandon the idea of giving Americans the option of government-run insurance as part of a new health care system.

Facing mounting opposition to the overhaul, administration officials left open the chance for a compromise with Republicans that would include health insurance cooperatives instead of a government-run plan. Such a concession probably would enrage Obama's liberal supporters but could deliver a much-needed victory on a top domestic priority opposed by GOP lawmakers.

Officials from both political parties reached across the aisle in an effort to find compromises on proposals they left behind when they returned to their districts for an August recess. Obama had wanted the government to run a health insurance organization to help cover the nation's almost 50 million uninsured, but didn't include it as one of his core principles of reform.

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said that government alternative to private health insurance is "not the essential element" of the administration's health care overhaul. The White House would be open to co-ops, she said, a sign that Democrats want a compromise so they can declare a victory.

Under a proposal by Sen. Kent Conrad, D-N.D., consumer-owned nonprofit cooperatives would sell insurance in competition with private industry, not unlike the way electric and agriculture co-ops operate, especially in rural states such as his own.

With $3 billion to $4 billion in initial support from the government, the co-ops would operate under a national structure with state affiliates, but independent of the government. They would be required to maintain the type of financial reserves that private companies are required to keep in case of unexpectedly high claims.

"I think there will be a competitor to private insurers," Sebelius said. "That's really the essential part, is you don't turn over the whole new marketplace to private insurance companies and trust them to do the right thing."

Obama's spokesman refused to say a public option was a make-or-break choice.

"What I am saying is the bottom line for this for the president is, what we have to have is choice and competition in the insurance market," White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said Sunday.

A day before, Obama appeared to hedge his bets.

"All I'm saying is, though, that the public option, whether we have it or we don't have it, is not the entirety of health care reform," Obama said at a town hall meeting in Grand Junction, Colo. "This is just one sliver of it, one aspect of it."

It's hardly the same rhetoric Obama employed during a constant, personal campaign for legislation.

"I am pleased by the progress we're making on health care reform and still believe, as I've said before, that one of the best ways to bring down costs, provide more choices and assure quality is a public option that will force the insurance companies to compete and keep them honest," Obama said in July.

Lawmakers have discussed the co-op model for months although the Democratic leadership and the White House have said they prefer a government-run option.

Conrad, chairman of the Senate Budget Committee, called the argument for a government-run public plan little more than a "wasted effort." He added there are enough votes in the Senate for a cooperative plan.

"It's not government-run and government-controlled," he said. "It's membership-run and membership-controlled. But it does provide a nonprofit competitor for the for-profit insurance companies, and that's why it has appeal on both sides."

Sen. Richard Shelby,* R-Ala., said Obama's team is making a political calculation and embracing the co-op alternative as 'a step away from the government takeover of the health care system' that the GOP has pummeled.

'I don't know if it will do everything people want, but we ought to look at it. I think it's a far cry from the original proposals,' he said.

Republicans say a public option would have unfair advantages that would drive private insurers out of business. Critics say co-ops would not be genuine public options for health insurance.

Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson, D-Texas, said it would be difficult to pass any legislation through the Democratic-controlled Congress without the promised public plan.

'We'll have the same number of people uninsured,' she said. 'If the insurance companies wanted to insure these people now, they'd be insured.'

Rep. Tom Price, R-Ga., said the Democrats' option would force individuals from their private plans to a government-run plan as some employers may choose not to provide health insurance.

'Tens of millions of individuals would be moved from their personal, private insurance to the government-run program. We simply don't think that's acceptable,' he said.

A shift to a cooperative plan would certainly give some cover to fiscally conservative Blue Dog Democrats who are hardly cheering for the government-run plan.

'The reality is that it takes 60 percent to get this done in the Senate. It's probably going to have to be bipartisan in the Senate, which I think it should be,' said Rep. Mike Ross, D-Ark., who added that the proposals still need changes before he can support them.

Obama, writing in Sunday's New York Times, said political maneuvers should be excluded from the debate.

"In the coming weeks, the cynics and the naysayers will continue to exploit fear and concerns for political gain," he wrote. "But for all the scare tactics out there, what's truly scary — truly risky — is the prospect of doing nothing."

Congress' proposals, however, seemed likely to strike end-of-life counseling sessions. Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin has called the session 'death panels,' a label that has drawn rebuke from her fellow Republicans as well as Democrats.

Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, declined to criticize Palin's comments and said Obama wants to create a government-run panel to advise what types of care would be available to citizens.

"In all honesty, I don't want a bunch of nameless, faceless bureaucrats setting health care for my aged citizens in Utah," Hatch said.

Sebelius said the end-of-life proposal was likely to be dropped from the final bill.

'We wanted to make sure doctors were reimbursed for that very important consultation if family members chose to make it, and instead it's been turned into this scare tactic and probably will be off the table,' she said.

Sebelius spoke on CNN's 'State of the Union' and ABC's 'This Week.' Gibbs appeared on CBS' 'Face the Nation.' Conrad and Shelby appeared on 'Fox News Sunday.' Johnson, Price and Ross spoke with "State of the Union." Hatch was interviewed on 'This Week.' "
Democrats do control both houses of Congress. They have the most leftist President in this nation's history, in the white house. Democrats control 60 % of the Senate, which means the portion of the article highlighted in green is correct. Except, the writer of the Article and the Democrat in question neglect to mention that fact. They can pass anything they want right now. Not one Republican is necessary. Except to call a quorum.

*Republican Senator Richard Shelby, is a former Democrat.
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Saturday, August 15, 2009

Fading Fascinations

King David provides for us the best example of balance in struggle, when the child he conceived with Bathsheba, is dying.
God has told David the child (never named) would die. David prays and fast mightily and in sorrow, begging God that he might alter his decision and spare that child. God does not. The child dies. What does David do? His entourage thinks that what comes next, will be even worse:
"And it came to pass on the seventh day, that the child died. And the servants of David feared to tell him that the child was dead: for they said, Behold, while the child was yet alive, we spake unto him, and he would not hearken unto our voice: how will he then vex himself, if we tell him that the child is dead? But when David saw that his servants whispered, David perceived that the child was dead: therefore David said unto his servants, Is the child dead? And they said, He is dead.

Then David arose from the earth, and washed, and anointed himself, and changed his apparel, and came into the house of the LORD, and worshipped: then he came to his own house; and when he required, they set bread before him, and he did eat. Then said his servants unto him, What thing is this that thou hast done? thou didst fast and weep for the child, while it was alive; but when the child was dead, thou didst rise and eat bread. And he said, While the child was yet alive, I fasted and wept: for I said, Who can tell whether GOD will be gracious to me, that the child may live? But now he is dead, wherefore should I fast? can I bring him back again? I shall go to him, but he shall not return to me."
David does all the struggling, mourning and praying prior to the point of inevitability, and then gets up and goes about his business.

In this way certain figures in the FLDS/YFZ mess no longer hold much interest for this blog. I want justice for all, so I don't wish to see the guilty go unpunished, but short of putting on a full court press private investigator unlimited budget investigation of my own, in advance of Judge Walther's impending decision on the admissibility of YFZ evidence, there's nothing more in that well. I've been heard/not heard. Others have too. That's over. My limited understanding of the law says that everything is now on the table, with which the game will be played.

For this reason, I have completely backed off Rozita Swinton. Why? Because she no longer matters. Oh sure, if Spock could "Vulcan Mind Meld" with her and learn the entire truth and survive the encounter to tell about it, it would be a truly fascinating story. Spock always struck me as a liberal though, so I'm not sure he would tell everything. C'est la vie.

So what do we have left on that front? An alleged LDS member, who is probably Lesbian and desperately vicarious obvious plagiarist. She has no life, of her own. In the previous link, she steals without attribution, the work of David K. Williams Jr. on the site "Peoples Press Collective." Unless of course, "What Princess Says Goes" is really David K. Williams Jr, or David K. Williams Jr. is really Rozita Swinton. The "voice" is so entirely different, that I seriously doubt that. That, by the way, was the screamingly obvious tip off.

Rozita will be eventually shuffled off into some form of probation (like that worked before) and the prosecution of her and/or investigation of her dropped, by Texas. She will then be the same empty, directionless, contradictory liar and sociopath that will keep repeating her false cries for help, until someone gets killed. All because Texas will not own up to what she really is in the FLDS cases, because they consider it to be the greater good. I would remind Texas that YFZ only narrowly missed being a more spectacular conflagration and loss of human life, a more glaring case of child abuse than they ever proposed had occurred at YFZ by the virtue of those they raided. The FLDS did not resist significantly and were entirely non violent. What if they had chosen to take a stand in their "Temple?" Four hundred plus kids fricasseed like Waco? To say nothing of the adults? Texas proposes to turn her loose again, to perfect her craft, so that she can someday watch her next effort by the blue light of a TV screen. I have said before, Rozita only narrowly missed becoming one of the most accomplished mass murders in history. She is certainly one of the largest one day child abusers, if not the largest, in US history.

But it's over. Really. Unless some massive new fact set comes to light, she will fade back into the shadows where she wants and alternately doesn't want to be. Endlessly cycling in and out of the spotlight with a host of faked names and situations crying "But it's her story..."

I don't care whose story it is anymore.
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Friday, August 14, 2009

Allen Steed's Filing

Want to read it? It's pretty easy to understand.
A report to the police about a crime is a well defined act by precident and law in Utah. Jim Bradshaw brings his copy of the "report" to the court, and simply says "It wasn't done." Read it here.

With only two sites having the PDF and your Modern Pharisee not being modern enough to upload it himself, I refer to the one posted at the Tribune.
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What is a Pharisee?

Pharisees, I contend, were one of the most misunderstood sects of Judiasm by Christians throughout history, up to and including today. A conversation with poster "karateka" led to this explanation, which I have made before (more or less) in the very first post of this blog.
In human terms, all true Christians are the successors of all true Pharisees. All true Pharisees were true believers in Judaism. There is no Christ without Judaism.

The term Christian was applied to those persons who inhabited Churches seeded and built up by the Apostle Paul. Those persons were gentile mirrors of the sect of Judaism known as the Pharisees, with the modification that they realized, as all true Pharisees would, that Christ was Messiah.

This hardly makes them perfect. This does not make their vision the only vision of Christ. This does not make them right. This DOES make those who believe as they did the legitimate and first claimants to the name Christian, which was interestingly enough, a derisive epithet flung at them by unbelievers in Antioch.

Sects such as the Essenes are not mentioned in the texts of Scripture on which our historic understandings of Christianity rely.

The Sadducees are in my view, most complicit of all in the murder of our LORD, and they no longer exist.

The documentary evidence says, that whether it was a large number of them or not, it was the Pharisees, as a sect, who contributed the largest number of converts to Early Messianic belief. In all likelihood more that called themselves Pharisees did not convert, but only they are mentioned in the earliest annals of Christianity.

"Certain" Pharisees once "saved" the life of Christ.

Proverbs 13:24: "He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes."

Hebrews 12:6: "For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth."

Christ devotes most of his negative attention to the Pharisees, as opposed to the Sadducees. It is not proof of love that you are punished, but it is proof of hatred, that you are not.
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Thursday, August 13, 2009

Steed goes for broke, No plea deal. Courage Warren

You've been led all along to believe that Allen Steed is willing to "plea bargain" on the fundamental rape case underlying Warren Jeffs accomplice conviction.
He's not going to plea bargain, he's going for a leg sweep on the whole business.
WTOP/AP - "In papers filed in Utah's 5th District Court, attorney Jim Bradshaw said the charge should not have been filed because the statute of limitations on the alleged crime had already expired.

According to court papers, Wall and Steed were married April 23, 2001. Wall waited until January 2006 to report the alleged crime to police and prosecutors, and then only after negotiating an agreement that dictated how the information would be used.

In 2001, the statute of limitations for prosecuting a felony was four years from the date the alleged crime occurred. The law was amended in 2005 to give prosecutors eight years to file charges, but only if the alleged crime had been reported to police within four years from when it occurred."
I keep having supposed lawyers, whose credentials I cannot verify, tell me this is bogus and won't make any difference. I don't see though, how if charges were never filed appropriately in the right venue, in the allotted time frame given by the law, how Warren can even remain convicted. Wouldn't it be a hoot if he is freed this way? The evidence challenge then becomes all important in Arizona as it is the only real substantive basis for Warren being held there. He might even get out on bail.
"In 2005, both Wall's sister and her then-boyfriend, Lamont Barlow, told representatives of separate law enforcement agencies that Wall may have been a victim of sexual abuse during her marriage. Neither meets the Utah Supreme Court's standards for an 'acceptable report' which would extend the statute of limitations, court papers say.

Washington County Attorney Brock Belnap said Thursday that he is still reviewing the filing."
It seems pretty clear cut. Either Jim Bradshaw is engaging in pure balderdash, or he's not. A simple finding of fact.
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Conversations with Latter Day Saints

I have stated it all along, sometimes more clearly than at others, that I have never believed the Latter Day Saints, true Latter Day Saints, are even remotely Christian. This is apparently a concept that is sinking in, and several good friends who are FLDS have written me in concern, I will do my best to explain. Please know that I do so out of Love, for all of you.
I wrote this as a reply to one of them, but the conversation has occurred between myself, and several members of the LDS and FLDS over the years.

The word Christian is first used here:
Acts 11:26: "And when he had found him, he brought him unto Antioch. And it came to pass, that a whole year they assembled themselves with the church, and taught much people. And the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch."
Previously, Christians were not named among the gentiles, and the only names given to them were Pharisees (twice believers are referred to in Acts as also being Pharisees), and those of the "sect of the Nazarene."
Acts 24:5: "For we have found this man a pestilent fellow, and a mover of sedition among all the Jews throughout the world, and a ringleader of the sect of the Nazarenes."
Or they were called believers of or in "That Way."
Acts 19:9: "But when divers were hardened, and believed not, but spake evil of 'that way' before the multitude, he departed from them, and separated the disciples, disputing daily in the school of one Tyrannus." (emphasis added)
It's important then to know, that originally as persuaded Pharisees (Paul for instance says "I am a Pharisee, the son of a Pharisee) who were the believers in the concept of Resurrection, that believers among the Gentiles in Antioch were characterized as CHRISTIANS while in a state of belief that is most similar to the faith of the Jewish PHARISEES.

Pharisees, by EVERY EVIDENCE, did not share the view of who God is, that the LDS or FLDS have. The Latter Day Saints believe the Father of Christ to be once a mortal being, limited as we are, who ascended to status of God, and hope that they will also ascend in some way to a similar status. Christians, Pharisees, and those of the religion of Judaism, see God as eternal, unbegun, unbeggining, never ending and above all. So wholly other in that regard as to be completely unlike us.

Simply put, if the LDS and FLDS are correct about the nature of God, then the Pharisees were wrong, and any follower of their sect among Judaism or among those who accepted Christ as Messiah and called "Christian," were also wrong. Wrong in the sense that they are entirely in opposition to the concept of God that the Latter Day Saints have. They are therefore wrong about who Christ is. Thus Christians are in fact from the Latter Day Saints perspective, deceived persons, who are wrong about God and necessarily, his son.

We are left with two choices, assuming Christ is the Son of God.

Choice one: Christians are not Latter Day Saints and Latter Day Saints are not Christians. Christians are correct, and Latter Day Saints, those that truly believe what the religions of that bolt of cloth teach, are LOST.

Choice two: Latter Day Saints are not Christians and Christians are not Latter Day Saints. Latter Day Saints are correct, and Christians those that believe as any denomination of Christianity does, are LOST.

In any case one is not a subgroup of the other, nor is their any intersection of the two faiths. We do have common scriptures, which means we do have a basis of dialogue. The fact though is, I as a Christian have claim and historic right to the term "Christian" whether they are right, or wrong, the LDS or any of it's divisions or sects, do not.
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End of an Era, Les Paul dies.

One of the few true Rock 'n' Roll Legends, guitarist Les Paul is gone at 94.
Hat tip to Michelle Malkin.
Yahoo/AP - "According to Gibson Guitar, (Les) Paul died at White Plains (NY) Hospital. His family and friends were by his side.

As an inventor, Paul also helped bring about the rise of rock 'n' roll with multitrack recording, which enables artists to record different instruments at different times, sing harmony with themselves, and then carefully balance the tracks in the finished recording.

The use of electric guitar gained popularity in the mid-to-late 1940s, and then exploded with the advent of rock in the mid-'50s.

'Suddenly, it was recognized that power was a very important part of music,' Paul once said. 'To have the dynamics, to have the way of expressing yourself beyond the normal limits of an unamplified instrument, was incredible. Today a guy wouldn't think of singing a song on a stage without a microphone and a sound system.'

A tinkerer and musician since childhood, he experimented with guitar amplification for years before coming up in 1941 with what he called 'The Log,' a four-by-four piece of wood strung with steel strings.

'I went into a nightclub and played it. Of course, everybody had me labeled as a nut.' He later put the wooden wings onto the body to give it a tradition guitar shape.

In 1952, Gibson Guitars began production on the Les Paul guitar.

Pete Townsend of the Who, Steve Howe of Yes, jazz great Al DiMeola and Led Zeppelin's Jimmy Page all made the Gibson Les Paul their trademark six-string.

Over the years, the Les Paul series has become one of the most widely used guitars in the music industry. In 2005, Christie's auction house sold a 1955 Gibson Les Paul for $45,600."
The story is also at CNN.
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One of the Chief Reasons I back the FLDS.

You blather and you blather, and you know you blather when someone says it better.
"The key to understanding the American system (of government) is to imagine that you have the power to make nearly any law you want. But your worst enemy will be the one to enforce it."
This is attributed to Rick Cook by "The Smallest Minority." Hat tip to The Barking Moonbat.

What's being said, (assuming it wasn't as obvious to you as it was to me) is that you will be left with the laws and precedents you used to "get" the FLDS if you end up "getting" them. They won't go away. It's like removing all the safeties on your Torpedoes, as seen in the movie "Hunt For Red October."

"You Arrogant Ass, You've Killed US."

Ah, those unintended consequences.
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Wednesday, August 12, 2009

"Something More Than This"

October Project is a now defunct band, fronted by several very good vocalists, the best of which was probably Mary Fahl.
"In the shadow cast as you were leaving,
In the beauty of the ending day,
There is always something to return to,
Something you allow to slip away,
In the empty corners of the evening,
In the vacant beauty of the wind,
There is always something to remember,
Something to remember,
To begin,
I need no shelter,
I need no guide,
I'll be alone on this long dark ride...

Whatever you fear,
Whatever you hide,
Whatever you carry deep inside,
There's something more than this...

Whatever you love,
Whatever you give,
Whatever you think you need to live,
There's something more than this.

In the shadow cast as you were leaving,
In the beauty of the ending day,
There is always something to believe in,
Something... I watch you slip away.

I need no shelter,
I need no guide,
I'll be alone on this long dark ride...

Whatever you fear,
Whatever you hide,
Whatever you carry deep inside,
There's something more than this...

Whatever you love,
Whatever you give,
Whatever you think you need to live,
There's something more than this."
I'm featuring the song in a widget at the top of my blog, while I experiment with the idea of a playlist of songs. We'll see how it works.

Good songs from my point of view (the only one important when listening for your own pleasure) are remarkable in their ability to produce all sorts of reactions. This one pushes me close to tears. I feel things, smell things, and almost see things while listening to it, all of places far away. The light dims and changes color in the room. That, in my book, is a great song.
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Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Site News, Progress, Navel Gazing, Pondering Warren Jeffs, etc.

The Modern Pharisee hit World Wide Web Highs at "Alexa" with a rank of 323,544th 317,464th. That means that there are 323,543 317,463 web sites around the world with better traffic. This is a new high for my humble one author web site.
In the United States, I have flirted with the "Top 50,000's" and fallen back a bit. It seems I am gaining a wider global following. My viewers are dominated by young women, at home, with children. That fascinates me. It also explodes the myth rather thoroughly that I am a man talking to men about things that only men care about, or wish for.

I continue to compose rather long involved posts over at Vermont Polygamy which are designed to lead up to a justification for my activity on the legalization of polygyny. It is my belief that for me to speak publicly, a series of discussions must take place privately. Those are the persons to whom I owe submission in the Godly order of things. Those discussions have taken place.

Laying that out before the world so that it is known I did my due dilligence takes time. If it seems murky, technical and overly long, I apologize. It's necessary. It takes a lot of time to do it correctly.

For this reason, several writing projects are backing up on the desk, that, and I do work for a living. Work has been thankfully busy of late. Being busy is exhausting though and takes away from free time I have to compose the posts necessary to hold your interest, and the interests of others.

Warren Jeffs has been on my mind. There was a particularly nasty CBS article on him at the end of last week playing heavily to the "Child Rapist" angle. I couldn't bring myself to write clearly on it, because the article was so heavily skewed in favor of a "Lynch Warren" sort of viewpoint, and because I am increasingly angry with Warren himself. I believe he is betraying his people in not maintaining his health.

This produces a frustration where one prepares to do battle on behalf of someone who seems to be lying down and moaning concerning his bad fortune. The thoughts of "Get up, Defend yourself" largely erased my outrage with the hatred expressed towards Warren and the FLDS in the aforementioned article. So I leave Warren with this thought, from 1st Kings 9, verses 2-8, in the hope that it reaches him:
"Then Jezebel sent a messenger unto Elijah, saying, So let the gods do to me, and more also, if I make not thy life as the life of one of them by to morrow about this time. And when he saw that, he arose, and went for his life, and came to Beersheba, which belongeth to Judah, and left his servant there. But he himself went a day's journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down under a juniper tree: and he requested for himself that he might die; and said, It is enough; now, O LORD, take away my life; for I am not better than my fathers. And as he lay and slept under a juniper tree, behold, then an angel touched him, and said unto him, Arise and eat. And he looked, and, behold, there was a cake baken on the coals, and a cruse of water at his head. And he did eat and drink, and laid him down again. And the angel of the LORD came again the second time, and touched him, and said, Arise and eat; because the journey is too great for thee. And he arose, and did eat and drink, and went in the strength of that meat forty days and forty nights unto Horeb the mount of God."
Eat Warren. Be strong for the journey is great. God has put you on this Earth for a purpose. Dying is cowardice. To live is Christ.

For one to live, and serve Christ, which is what the Apostle Paul tells us, one must believe. I do not agree that the faith of the FLDS is a Christian Faith and cannot agree that it leads to salvation. Warren (if he truly believes what he says he does) is a lost man leading others into the pit. I know he reads the Bible and has read it. For that reason, I reach out to him and tell him "Get up, EAT, for the journey is great." I pray that in the end, the journey leads to the LORD, and not where I think he is ultimately going. Warren does play his part though, whether it is used of God as a profane thing like Pharoah, or used of God as a sacred thing, one of his elect.

Why mention this? I firmly believe that Barbara Walther is hoping that Warren dies. It makes it easier for her to rule against the "Motion to Suppress" because if Warren is dead, and she rules against it, there is no second guessing of her opinion in Arizona. Warren will be dead, there will be no case there. Warren then betrays his own flock, who need his help in their cause, which I believe is just. The exclusion of the evidence doesn't just help Warren, it helps the Texas defendants. It helps religious freedom and therefore it helps me. Buck up Warren, Arise, EAT, the journey is great.
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Sunday, August 09, 2009

Marty Braemer? He can't shut up.

I'm telling you, I'd go work a soup kitchen or something. No one would want to know what I thought again.
But this man musta made a fist fulla loot as a pastor.
"It's Sunday night and in 12 hrs my wife and I will board a plane back to New York to spend the week packing up our house, our kids, and our lives to move away from home and our comfort zones.

We spent a week house hunting, job hunting, being counseled, and walking together at night (something we have not done in years). We attended a SS class today where the teacher is using Jim Binney's book The Ministry of Marriage as the curriculum.

We enrolled our kids in school. I nearly had a heart attack when I saw the tuition.

Pray for us. For the first time in my life I am scared and excited at the same. I am waaaaaaaaay out of my comfort zone.

God has proven His goodness and faithfulness in the midst of my failure.

On the humorous side... our pastor is a Calvinist."
He's complaining about private school tuition. Marty? How about the air fare? That too much? Greens fees? Outrageous? Out of your comfort zone?

Penitent men do not come back and whine about the challenge their luxuries present in life.
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A Continuing Series at Vermont Polygamy

Over the past year, and more intensely over the past four months, I have been in locked horns mode with the Orthodox Presbyterian Church.
The perspective of this discussion is one of a Reformed Person (myself) who claims the tradition of the Reformation (that's Martin Luther, John Calvin and John Knox) who disputes the conclusion of the Westminster Confession of Faith on Marriage. The Orthodox Presbyterian Church is big on formal membership and I am lobbying to join the local church. It was important that I complete this process, to be in submission to the church, prior to launching off on my own to promote polygynous marriage being legal, in Vermont. Read on.
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Saturday, August 08, 2009

Should it be me?

As I approach a moment of truth with my denomination, the question that keeps repeating itself in my head is, "Should I do this?" Recently I made the decision to embrace every trial as it came, and not try to simplify my life to gain control.

In the past my method of dealing with problems has been very much like that of a chess player in an end game. Simplify. It's a conscious affectation, as well as a sensible one, a man can only do so many things well until the quality of his output begins to fail. It is eventually an enforced limitation. Whereas one might juggle two balls effortlessly, then with skill and learning three, I've never seen someone juggle twenty. There is a limit to a man's ability (hence the hint of two jugglers depicted above). Beyond that, you begin to have to attribute results to the miraculous, or juggling in low gravity.

The decision to keep as many balls in the air without laying one down was based on seeing what would happen. If a question or task merited attention on my part, I would simply attend to it on the basis of that merit.

Important things that deserve my attention are:

Household needs. That would be food, shelter and clothing.

Past needs unmet. I have a lot of debt. This comes from delaying the day of reckoning for unmet needs, and postponing them through debt. I could easily service the household needs I have, were it not for the burden of debt. That burden lightens a lot in July of next year, and again in April of 2011.

My various causes, the only one truly necessary being the confrontation of the Church which is now public, not private as it has been for the past year. This confrontation is primarily focused on polygyny. The church would forgive my other exceptions to general doctrine in the OPC.

Family issues. I have one natural son who has shown the burden of the effects of sinful divorce and destruction of family. I am able to do utterly nothing to help him, in human terms. I am now 2600 miles away from where he is likely to be imprisoned for some time. I have another daughter who could use my occasional help, she is not in the kind of trouble in her life that Cameron is, she is in fact pursuing a career as a physicians assistant, but must complete her education. I am able to offer her no help either, and she is even farther away, on the opposite coast.

My health. It is rapidly deteriorating. This is in large part due to not simplifying. I honestly don't care anymore. John Hughes, the film director, just took the dirt nap at 59. Heart attack. I'm 55. I could go anytime. That's the message of the parable Christ told as well. At 55 though with contemporaries dropping like flies, you kinda view it as a variable deadline for life's term paper. I should always have been about the masters business, he could come at any time. I should be found doing it, but it would be nice to say as Paul did that he had run the race.

Why all of this now? With the number of balls in the air increasing, and the amount of time I am being asked to sustain juggling them all, something will drop, perhaps everything will drop all at once. Do to what I do, as I have said before, I need a job. Either this is the job, or the job I have will eventually demand that they are the job. The Modern Pharisee continues to grow in viewership. Someone will notice, then someone else will notice, and then I will have a choice to make. If I were to appear on Larry King, Bill O'Reilly or in a Newspaper interview there are inevitable processes that get set in motion.

"Same Sex Marriage" approaches in Vermont. Next month. If someone tries to register to marry an additional person in Vermont, it's game on. That could come as soon as Tuesday, September 1st. I don't know these people as of yet, but someone will try, of this I am as certain as a non prophet can be. I've offered to be part of this effort, encouraged said someone's to come to me, but so far have heard nothing. I've been derided for not trying to do so myself, and believe me I would, but I'd have to want to marry someone that could marry me and would wish to marry me as well. I rather doubt that's happening in the next three weeks, but if there is any potential bride out there that's also possessed of a very large dowry, I guess we could discuss it. More likely though, three gals will show up with one guy and try it. Or three guys and a gal. Or four gals, two guys and perhaps a violin playing goat. After all, happiness isn't happiness without a violin playing goat. Depending on my level of involvement or non involvement, I could be written out of that picture altogether.

Decisions eventually make themselves. By NOT making them, but letting them happen as I stand where I believe I ought to stand they will eventually be made. Like I said before, ball or all of them will hit the ground over a period of time. You can contact me with suggestions. HughMcBryde (at) gmail (dot) "you-know-where." You can write me typed or longhand, but if you do, you need to email me for my snail mail address, or you can find it here on Vermont's lobbyist registration site. You do have to correctly type in my name. It has all my "snail mail" information. It also reveals that I am in fact an active lobbyist, but have made no expenditures of any note, which means there has been no support of any note.

As is periodically noted, you're out there. That would be supporters of the notion that polygyny should be legalized. Verbal support is dandy and if that is all you have to give, I am grateful for it. If you offer your prayers, this is even more effective and I am awed by it. Someone (or several someones over time) must be moved to commit dollars to the effort or it is not likely that I can continue as I am. An employer doesn't really want a high profile activist on his management team. I am part of the public face of an enterprise, and that enterprise does not belong to me. I've done this before as part of a more conventional constituency, and as a rank and file employee. It's vastly different when the subject is cutting edge controversial and you sport the name "Manager" for someone else and their business.

So it's up to you. I cannot go on this way forever. Signs say that it may not be much longer. At the very least, if the cut down comes, and I must simplify, it's job, my passion (and/or the blog) or maybe everything. God does not need me specifically to accomplish his purposes and his tools may not continue to include me. This is going to get expensive, hard and personally costly. At least that's the way I see it. For me to continue, I probably will have to go on doing this, and this alone.
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Friday, August 07, 2009

Kathy Castor's Townhall Meeting gets Violent

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Hank Hanegraaff and another textbook answer to Polygyny

The Self Styled "Bible Answer Man" and another set of pat answers, that don't measure up. Hank asks "Does 2 Samuel 12 approve of Polygamy?"
"A recent caller to the Bible Answer Man broadcast asked for further clarification as to whether 2 Samuel 12:8 might well suggest that God approves of the practice of polygamy. I promised to provide additional perspective to this very significant question, and I say 'significant' in that one may legitimately question a God who approves the practice of polygamy."
Once again the debate is subtly characterized by misuse of the language. Polygamy, monogamy, polyandry, polyamory and polygyny are all part of a spectrum of non Biblical words, they are defined culturally, not in a Christian context. As such we should use them properly, not as they are misused repeatedly. Scripture never advocates polygamy, if it does advocate any form of marriage other than monogamy, it's polygyny. In truth the division is a secular one. It should be significant to note that the Bible recognizes only marriage and other husband-wife relationships known as concubinage. Scripture clearly limits a woman to one husband at a time, and takes a decidedly dim view of serial marriage of women when their former partner is still alive (Romans 7).
"In 2 Samuel 12, the Lord, speaking through Nathan the prophet, says to King David, 'I gave you your master’s house and your master’s wives into your arms, and I gave you the house of Israel and Judah; and if that had been too little, I would have added you many more things like these.'

At face value, this seems to suggest that God gave David multiple wives, and then stood ready to add to his harem with divine sanction. Of course, that’s precisely the problem with pressing Scripture into a wooden literal labyrinth, because—in truth—if Nathan’s words are anything at all, they are ironic."
If I understand Hank correctly, this is astounding presumption. He says that Nathan really doesn't mean this, he is saying like Job, "Surely you are the people, and with you wisdom dies?" Nathan is saying God gave David his wives but doesn't really mean it? Let us examine what "giving into your arms" means, which in other translations is "into your bosom." "Into your arms" is entirely translated from one Hebrew word, "חיק (cheyq)," which occurs 39 times. Theologians are fond of "first use" and "first use" for this term is Sarah telling Abraham I " 'חיק (cheyq)' Hagar to you." It generally means close intimate embrace and it is used TWICE by Nathan (imagine that, a full one in nineteen of the entire usage of the word) in the same passage. Bathsheba was in the poor man/lamb illustration, the lamb, that Uriah "חיק (cheyq)'d," so to speak. That brings us to the other use in interpretation that theologians are fond of. How is it used by the same speaker/author? Nathan only uses the word twice and the are the only uses of that term in the books of Samuel, all in 2nd Samuel chapter 12.
"David had just murdered a man in order to have another woman appended to his harem. Despite the generosity of the very God who had made him sovereign ruler of the land, the king had stolen the wife of a servant and that to satisfy his carnal lust."
I agree here with Hank that this is the point, though he uses the term "harem" because of it's pejorative quality. David, who has plenty of wives, has stolen a poor man's only wife. Adultery is wrong, murder is wrong, but I disagree with Hank and say that Nathan (and therefore God) really means it, exactly as it was said. God says; "All you had to do was ASK David, I'd have given you more wives, I already had, so why are you stealing that which is not yours?"
"As with David, Solomon, David’s son, had extravagances in multiplying not only horses, but multiplying wives, and that was a significant factor in the unraveling of a kingdom."
Strangely though Hank, scripture does chide Solomon specifically for his sin, and it is NEVER said to be his many wives. That's odd, because I would think 1000 total wives and concubines had to be "a lot." Perhaps that is because we have a suggestion of how many wives is too much, and how many wives Solomon had, for a time: Song of Songs 6:8:
"There are threescore queens (60), and fourscore concubines (80), and virgins without number."
At the time of the writing of Song of Songs, Solomon has 60 wives of marriage and 80 concubines. So what does Nehemiah chide Solomon for? The number of his wives? He does not. No King of Israel or Judah is ever chided for the number of their wives, anywhere in scripture. Solomon is upbraided in the analysis of Scripture, for the UNBELIEF of his wives: Nehemiah 13:25 & 26:
"I contended with them, and cursed them, and smote certain of them, and plucked off their hair, and made them swear by God, saying, Ye shall not give your daughters unto their sons, nor take their daughters unto your sons, or for yourselves. Did not Solomon king of Israel sin by these things? yet among many nations was there no king like him, who was beloved of his God, and God made him king over all Israel: nevertheless even him did outlandish "נכרי (nokriy)(stranger, alien, foreign)" women cause to sin."
I can only conclude, that though the number of Solomon's wives almost has to be too many, it is not the number that was his sin, his sin was "outlandish" women. Thus one would conclude that at some point Solomon went from an acceptable number of wives, of local origin, to a large number of foreign marriage alliances with unbelieving women. The bulk of his eventual 300 wives, and 700 concubines coming from this forbidden source. This is backed up by 1st Kings 11:1-3:
"But king Solomon loved many "רב (rab)" strange "נכרי (nokriy)" women, together with the daughter of Pharaoh, women of the Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Zidonians, and Hittites; Of the nations concerning which the LORD said unto the children of Israel, Ye shall not go in to them, neither shall they come in unto you: for surely they will turn away your heart after their gods: Solomon clave unto these in love. And he had seven hundred wives, princesses, and three hundred concubines: and his wives turned away his heart."
It is only after the word "many" (the same root for the word "many" in Deuteronomy 17) that the strangeness of wives is mentioned. Essentially Solomon's sin was firstly, strange women, of whom he took quite a lot. After the primary sin (he should NEVER take foreign woman of unbelief) Solomon takes "many," a term of subjective value. Three may be enough for me, but another might handle ten well, this is the parable of the talents. A King could have several, but not too many wives, but no outlandish ones at all, just like any other Israelite. It doesn't matter that Solomon may have taken 840 wives of a forbidden sort, the primary sin was they were all forbidden. The OUTLANDISH ones, and a great "רב (rab)" number of them as well.
"Who can forget the explicit admonition of Moses in Deuteronomy 17:17: Do not multiply wives or your heart will be led astray!"
Hank, you're proposing, because of the preceding parallel treatment of horses, in verse 16, that a King could have only one horse. This is ludicrous.
"Moreover, monogamous marriage is clearly taught in Genesis (2:22-24), and then reiterated by Christ himself."
Now Hank downshifts into assertion. When an author is not specific, and buries the lead, like Hank just did, and says it's "clear," it almost certainly isn't. Nothing in the concept of "one flesh" says that monogamy is endorsed. All it says is that married people are "one flesh." Since God in his own law CLEARLY recognizes that you can have more than one wife and since you are in fact "one flesh" with your wife, Hank confuses the condition of "one flesh" with the estate of monogamy which he further confuses with marriage itself, and there is no place in scripture that grants equivalency to the idea "One Flesh"=Monogamy=Marriage. Monogamy isn't even a word in the Bible.
"Jesus went on to say that, 'Anyone who divorces his wife, except for marital unfaithfulness, and marries another woman commits adultery' (Matt 19:9). Not only so, but marriage is an analogy for the relationship that God has with his people, with the Church His one and only bride."
Now the typical piling on starts. After "clearly" we hear the jumble of arguments shoved on us in rapid fire form. Package the bunk together, and pass it all through the gate "Trojan Horse" style. Hank, what happens if a man DOESN'T divorce his wife, and marries another? Also, you're making the error of analogy as fact by saying that Christ, apparently depicted as monogamous, is serving as an instructive example to us in marriage, in the apparent fact of his monogamy. This would have to be clearly stated as so, you're not free to simply say that "See, this really looks like and probably is a monogamy, so it means we should be monogamous.
"Furthermore, reading the Bible for all its worth involves recognition that the narratives of Scripture are often descriptive as opposed to prescriptive. The fact that Scripture reveals the patriarchs with all their warts and moles and wrinkles is to warn us of their failures, it’s not to teach us to emulate their practices. Far from blinking at David’s polygamous behavior, the Bible reveals that as a result of his sin, the sword never left his home."
Now the outright equivocation and lie. It is NOT David's "Polygamous Behavior" for which the sword never departs his home, David is ALREADY VERY POLGYNOUS in his marriage practice, it is specifically for his MURDER and THEFT through ADULTERY, of Bathsheba. He MURDERS URIAH, after STEALING his wife. 2nd Samuel 12:9 & 10:
"Wherefore hast thou despised the commandment of the LORD, to do evil in his sight? thou hast killed Uriah the Hittite with the sword, and hast taken his wife to be thy wife, and hast slain him with the sword of the children of Ammon. Now therefore the sword shall never depart from thine house; because thou hast despised me, and hast taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be thy wife."
NOT POLYGAMY Hank, for there was not even such a word in all of scripture, it is the theft of Uriah's wife, and his MURDER, for which the sword does not depart. You sin yourself by saying it was polygamy for you distort the word of God's Prophet, which is not merely descriptive, it is the WORD OF GOD. This is God's verdict, not the distorted twisted lie you offer up.
"Finally, let me say this, as God permitted divorce because of the hardness of men’s hearts, so too He put up with polygamy because of humankind’s insolent stubbornness."
I disagree with this entirely. But for now I shall grant that the interpretation that divorce was allowed because of mens ugly hard heartedness is correct in its spin, presented here. NOWHERE, is the following LIE substantiated. The lie that "Polygyny, like divorce, was allowed because men were hard hearted." This is simple invention. Arguably, Hank and others have found the category to place Polygyny in, if it is indeed reluctantly allowed by God, but their problem is, for Polygyny to BE "Like Divorce" in this way, it must somewhere be said that it is "Like Divorce" in this way. BUT IT NEVER IS.
"The apostle Paul in definitive fashion says just as there are no slaves but only free in the economy of God, so too there is no male or female but all are one in Christ. Indeed, one might well say that the words of Paul in Ephesians 5 have ennobled and empowered women in the West such that far from being chattel, their considered co-laborers in Christ with the very men who are instructed to give up their rights for them."
Hank, would you then have women Elders in the church? Preachers? Would you then sanction Gay Marriage, because after all, why cannot I have a husband as a man? We are all equal, would you deny a woman a wife, like I am able to take? Are children in charge of parents? Did Paul not mean what he wrote to Philemon? This cannot be the interpretation of Ephesians 5, for Paul has just gotten through with telling wives to submit to husbands, yet there are neither male nor female? You twist the scripture grossly out of context to contradict what just went before in the same chapter. We are all equal in Christ after JUDGMENT. Paul is reminding men of that, so that they do not despise the estate of one or the other in this life, because of our eventual status in the next.

(Revised mildly on June 20th, 2010. Expanded information on the Hebrew for "Many")
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