Friday, March 18, 2011

Important Perspective on Japan's Nuclear Reactors

From the Wall Street Journal...
Even while thousands of people are reported dead or missing, whole neighborhoods lie in ruins, and gas and oil fires rage out of control, press coverage of the Japanese earthquake has quickly settled on the troubles at two nuclear reactors as the center of the catastrophe.
Rep. Ed Markey (D., Mass.), a longtime opponent of nuclear power, has warned of "another Chernobyl" and predicted "the same thing could happen here." In response, he has called for an immediate suspension of licensing procedures for the Westinghouse AP1000, a "Generation III" reactor that has been laboring through design review at the Nuclear Regulatory Commission for seven years.

Author William Tucker explains why the danger is limited at Japan's nuclear reactors.
Before we respond with such panic, though, it would be useful to review exactly what is happening in Japan and what we have to fear from it.
The core of a nuclear reactor operates at about 550 degrees Fahrenheit, well below the temperature of a coal furnace and only slightly hotter than a kitchen oven. If anything unusual occurs, the control rods immediately drop, shutting off the nuclear reaction. You can't have a "runaway reactor," nor can a reactor explode like a nuclear bomb. A commercial reactor is to a bomb what Vaseline is to napalm. Although both are made from petroleum jelly, only one of them has potentially explosive material.
Once the reactor has shut down, there remains "decay heat" from traces of other radioactive isotopes. This can take more than a week to cool down, and the rods must be continually bathed in cooling waters to keep them from overheating.
On all Generation II reactors—the ones currently in operation—the cooling water is circulated by electric pumps. The new Generation III reactors such as the AP1000 have a simplified "passive" cooling system where the water circulates by natural convection with no pumping required.
If the pumps are knocked out in a Generation II reactor—as they were at Fukushima Daiichi by the tsunami—the water in the cooling system can overheat and evaporate. The resulting steam increases internal pressure that must be vented. There was a small release of radioactive steam at Three Mile Island in 1979, and there have also been a few releases at Fukushima Daiichi. These produce radiation at about the level of one dental X-ray in the immediate vicinity and quickly dissipate.

Editorial Board Member Mary Kissel explains the Japanese response to the quake.
If the coolant continues to evaporate, the water level can fall below the level of the fuel rods, exposing them. This will cause a meltdown, meaning the fuel rods melt to the bottom of the steel pressure vessel.
Early speculation was that in a case like this the fuel might continue melting right through the steel and perhaps even through the concrete containment structure—the so-called China syndrome, where the fuel would melt all the way to China. But Three Mile Island proved this doesn't happen. The melted fuel rods simply aren't hot enough to melt steel or concrete.
The decay heat must still be absorbed, however, and as a last-ditch effort the emergency core cooling system can be activated to flood the entire containment structure with water. This will do considerable damage to the reactor but will prevent any further steam releases. The Japanese have now reportedly done this using seawater in at least two of the troubled reactors. These reactors will never be restarted.
None of this amounts to "another Chernobyl." The Chernobyl reactor had two crucial design flaws. First, it used graphite (carbon) instead of water to "moderate" the neutrons, which makes possible the nuclear reaction. The graphite caught fire in April 1986 and burned for four days. Water does not catch fire.
Second, Chernobyl had no containment structure. When the graphite caught fire, it spouted a plume of radioactive smoke that spread across the globe. A containment structure would have both smothered the fire and contained the radioactivity.
If a meltdown does occur in Japan, it will be a disaster for the Tokyo Electric Power Company but not for the general public. Whatever steam releases occur will have a negligible impact. Researchers have spent 30 years trying to find health effects from the steam releases at Three Mile Island and have come up with nothing. With all the death, devastation and disease now threatening tens of thousands in Japan, it is trivializing and almost obscene to spend so much time worrying about damage to a nuclear reactor.
What the Japanese earthquake has proved is that even the oldest containment structures can withstand the impact of one of the largest earthquakes in recorded history. The problem has been with the electrical pumps required to operate the cooling system. It would be tragic if the result of the Japanese accident were to prevent development of Generation III reactors, which eliminate this design flaw.
Mr. Tucker is author of "Terrestrial Energy: How Nuclear Power Will Lead the Green Revolution and End America's Energy Odyssey" (Bartleby Press, 2010).

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Sarah Palin on $4-Per-Gallon

WASHINGTON — A feisty President Barack Obama defended his administration's energy policies Friday after weeks of attacks from Republicans and energy-state lawmakers of both parties who say the president has blocked new domestic oil and gas production.
“Any notion that my administration has shut down oil production might make for a good political sound bite, but it doesn't match up with reality,” he said at a midday news conference. Read more:

There is no nice way to say this. President Obama's statement simply is not true. Sarah Palin sets the record straight.

The $4-Per-Gallon President

by Sarah Palin on Tuesday, March 15, 2011 at 5:27pm

Is it really any surprise that oil and gas prices are surging toward the record highs we saw in 2008 just prior to the economic collapse? Despite the President’s strange assertions in his press conference last week, his Administration is not a passive observer to the trends that have inflated oil prices to dangerous levels. His war on domestic oil and gas exploration and production has caused us pain at the pump, endangered our already sluggish economic recovery, and threatened our national security.

The evidence of the President’s anti-drilling mentality and his culpability in the high gas prices hurting Americans is there for all to see. The following is not even an exhaustive list:

Exhibit A: His drilling moratorium. Guided by politics and pure emotion following the Gulf spill instead of peer-reviewed science or defensible law, the President used the power of his executive order to impose a deepwater drilling moratorium. The Administration even ignored a court order halting his moratorium. And what is the net result of the President’s (in)actions? A large drilling company was forced to declare bankruptcy, the economy of the region has been hobbled, and at least 7 rigs moved out of the Gulf area to other parts of the world while many others remain idle. Is it any surprise that oil production in the Gulf of Mexico is expected to fall by 240,000 bbl/d in 2011 alone?

But that’s just the Gulf. There’s also the question of a moratorium on the development of Alaska’s Outer Continental Shelf. It seems the Obama Administration can’t agree with itself on whether it imposed a moratorium there or not. The White House claims that they didn’t, but their own Department of the Interior let slip that they did. To clear up this mess, Gov. Parnell decided to sue the DOI to get a solid answer because such a federal OCS drilling moratorium would violate federal law.

Exhibit B: His 2012 budget. The President used his 2012 budget to propose the elimination of several vital oil and natural gas production tax incentives. Eliminating these incentives will discourage energy companies from completing exploratory projects, resulting in higher energy costs for all Americans – and not just at the pump. According to one study mentioned in a recent Wall Street Journal op-ed, eliminating the deduction for drilling costs “could increase natural gas prices by 50 cents per thousand cubic feet,” which would translate to “an increased cost to consumers of $11.5 billion per year in the form of higher natural gas prices.”

Exhibit C: His anti-drilling regulatory policies. The U.S. Geological Survey found that the area north of the Arctic Circle has an estimated 90 billion barrels of technically recoverable oil and 1,670 trillion cubic feet of technically recoverable natural gas, one third of which is in Alaskan territory. That’s our next Prudhoe Bay right there. According to one industry study, allowing Royal Dutch Shell to tap these reserves in Alaska’s Chukchi and Beaufort seas would create an annual average of 54,700 jobs nationwide with a $145 billion total payroll and generate an additional $193 billion a year in total revenues to local, state, and federal governments for 50 years. This would be great news if only the federal government would allow Shell to drill there. But it won’t. It’s been five years since Shell purchased the lease to develop these fields, but it’s been mired in a regulatory funk courtesy of the Obama Administration. After investing $3.5 billion in exploration programs (a significant portion of which went to ensuring responsible spill response and prevention), Shell announced last month that it has given up hope of obtaining the required permits to conduct exploratory drilling this year. That means no jobs and no billions in oil revenue from the Arctic anytime soon thanks to this Administration. Let’s stop and think about this for a moment. Right now Beltway politicos are quibbling over cutting $61 billion from our dangerously bloated $3.7 trillion budget. Allowing drilling in the Chukchi and Beaufort seas will enrich federal coffers by $167 billion a year without raising our taxes. If we let Harry Reid keep his “cowboy poetry,” would the White House consider letting us drill?

Taken altogether, it’s hard to deny that the Obama Administration is anti-drilling. The President may try to suggest that the rise in oil prices has nothing to do with him, but the American people won’t be fooled. Before we saw any protests in the Middle East, increased global demand led to a significant rise in oil prices; but the White House stood idly by watching the prices go up and allowing America to remain increasingly dependent on imports from foreign regimes in dangerously unstable parts of the world.

This was no accident. Through a process of what candidate Obama once called “gradual adjustment,” American consumers have seen prices at the pump rise 67 percent since he took office. Let’s not forget that in September 2008, candidate Obama’s Energy Secretary in-waiting said: “Somehow we have to figure out how to boost the price of gasoline to the levels in Europe.” That’s one campaign promise they’re working hard to fulfill! Last week, the British Telegraph reported that the price of petrol in the UK hit £6 a gallon – which comes to about $9.70. If you think $4 a gallon is bad now, just wait till the next crisis causes oil prices to “necessarily” skyrocket. Meanwhile, the vast undeveloped reserves that could help to keep prices at the pump affordable remain locked up because of President Obama’s deliberate unwillingness to drill here and drill now.

Hitting the American people with higher gas prices like this is essentially a hidden tax and a transfer of wealth to foreign regimes who are providing us the energy we refuse to provide for ourselves. Like inflation, higher energy prices are a hidden tax on Americans who are struggling to make ends meet. And these high gas prices will be felt in the form of higher food prices due to higher transportation costs. Energy is connected to everything in our economy. Access to affordable and secure energy is key to economic growth, which in turn is key to job growth. Energy is the building block of our economy. The President is purposely weakening that building block and weakening our country.

2012 can’t come soon enough.

- Sarah Palin

Friday, March 11, 2011

Defund NPR... Here's why...

NPR actually doesn't get that much taxpayer funding. They will make it just fine without it, I believe. But, NPR will not have to pretend to represent both sides. They can then go with their liberal agenda supported by most donors and listeners. They have some good programming on NPR, but the idea that NPR is unbiased is completely false and it's time for NPR to come out of the closet. While I enjoy some of the progams, I don't want my tax dollars promoting a liberal agenda that I don't believe in. If liberal programming can't survive in the market place, maybe that's because most of the populace is not socialist. Defund NPR and let's see how they do.

"Contrary to the perception that NPR is primarily funded by the government, the network only receives about 1 to 2 percent of its funds from federal grants. Individual NPR member stations, located around the country, rely on state and federal sources for about 10 percent of their funding.
Schiller, on tape, points out "that very little of our funding comes from the government" despite claims to the contrary. He adds that "in the long run we would be better off without federal funding."
The video has already been making the rounds on conservative sites this morning. And even though Schiller is no longer with NPR, the video is sure to give ammunition to NPR critics who already claim the network is too liberal and doesn't deserve federal funds.
Update: NPR put out an additional statement around 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday.
"The comments contained in the video released today are contrary to everything we stand for, and we completely disavow the views expressed. NPR is fair and open minded about the people we cover. Our reporting reflects those values every single day — in the civility of our programming, the range of opinions we reflect and the diversity of stories we tell."
"The assertion that NPR and public radio stations would be better off without federal funding does not reflect reality. The elimination of federal funding would significantly damage public broadcasting as a whole."
"Prior to the lunch meeting presented in the edited video, Ron Schiller had informed NPR that he was resigning from his position to take a new job. His resignation was announced publicly last week, and he was expected to depart in May. While we review this situation, he has been placed on administrative leave."'
More of the story HERE...

Thursday, March 10, 2011

excerpt from Dallin H. Oaks The Lords Way...

104There is widespread dissatisfaction with government welfare programs. Critics include not only the taxpayers who finance the assistance and resent the fact that it seems to fall far short of its stated aims, but also the persons who receive assistance and who resent the extent and nature of the aid and the administrative controls that accompany it. Some scholars and some politicians complete the chorus of opposition.

105The most severe critics contend that government welfare programs have failed to reduce poverty; they have probably increased it, while contributing to a host of associated social evils. 6 John Goodman, president of the National Center for Political Analysis, has said: "The USA's welfare system is a disaster. It is creating poverty, not destroying it. It subsidizes divorce, unwed teenage pregnancy, the abandonment of elderly parents by their children, and the wholesale dissolution of the family. The reason? We pay people to be poor. Private charities have always been better at providing relief where it is truly needed." 7

The passage of the Social Security Act in 1935 marked a turning point in modern social welfare development in the United States. The benefits granted under that legislation had little or no relation to the contributions recipients had made to what was called the insurance fund. So far as individual workers were concerned, they had no interest in a segregated fund.
118That is still true after more than a half-century. The huge sums that potential recipients and their employers pay as social security taxes are hardly distinguishable from income taxes, and the amounts received as social security payments bear little relationship to the amounts the recipient has paid into the fund. Some pay much more than their expected return; some pay much less. It can therefore be said that in economic effect, social security disbursements are difficult to distinguish from welfare payments. 29
118However, there is a great difference in terms of motive. Since all social security recipients have paid something for the assistance they are receiving (and some have even contributed more than they will receive), for purposes of the recipient's motive it is possible to liken social security to the purchase of an annuity for life. In any event, it is virtually impossible for employees or employers to avoid the taxes that are labeled for the support of social security payments. In those circumstances, church members and church corporations (as employers) have no practical alternative other than to participate, even though the social security system leaves much to be desired when measured against the principles of self-reliance.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

In Mine Own Way... President Marion G. Romney

“In Mine Own Way”
President Marion G. Romney
Second Counselor in the First Presidency
Marion G. Romney, "“In Mine Own Way”", Ensign, Nov. 1976, 123

Brothers and sisters, I seek your faith and prayers as I attempt to direct your thoughts a little while to the fundamentals of the welfare program. I want to congratulate the Brethren and Sister Smith on the fine presentations they’ve made here this morning.
Brother Featherstone’s account of the talking wall brought to my mind an incident that I was told about. Not long ago two of our security men were working high up on the temple, inspecting it or something, in the night, when it was dark. Down in front of the temple, two or three inebriated men were hanging on the gate looking up at the temple, and one of them said, “Oh Moroni, speak to me.” And one of our men said, “Yes, what is it you want?”
I won’t tell you anything new this morning. I’ll give you some remarks that I’ve given many, many times—not verbatim, but the substance of what I’ve been teaching about the fundamentals of the Church welfare program throughout the Church in the last thirty-five years. I have entitled these remarks, “In Mine Own Way.”
As our modern societies follow the course which led to the fall of Rome and other civilizations which succumbed to the deceptive lure of the welfare state and socialism, I think it not inappropriate for me to emphasize again the Lord’s plan for the temporal salvation of His mortal children.
To emphasize the contrast between the Lord’s plan and some of the absurd practices of our day, I shall read a clipping or two from my miscellaneous file.
The first concerns a hippie couple who were walking down the street. They both had long hair and were dressed in typical hippie attire, complete with beads, sandals, and headbands. The fellow said to the girl: “I’m going over and pick up my unemployment check. Then I’ll drop in at the university to see what’s holding up my check for my federal education grant. After that I’ll pick up our food stamps. Meanwhile, you go over to the free clinic and check your tests, pick up my new glasses at the city health center, then go to the welfare department and apply for another increase on our eligibility limit.
“Then I’ll meet you at five o’clock at the federal building for the mass demonstration against this rotten establishment.”
I clipped the following from the Reader’s Digest some time ago.
“In our friendly neighbor city of St. Augustine great flocks of sea gulls are starving amid plenty. Fishing is still good, but the gulls don’t know how to fish. For generations they have depended on the shrimp fleet to toss them scraps from the nets. Now the fleet has moved. …
“The shrimpers had created a Welfare State for the … sea gulls. The big birds never bothered to learn how to fish for themselves and they never taught their children to fish. Instead they led their little ones to the shrimp nets.
“Now the sea gulls, the fine free birds that almost symbolize liberty itself, are starving to death because they gave in to the ‘something for nothing’ lure! They sacrificed their independence for a hand-out.
“A lot of people are like that, too. They see nothing wrong in picking delectable scraps from the tax nets of the U.S. Government’s ‘shrimp fleet.’ But what will happen when the Government runs out of goods? What about our children of generations to come?
“Let’s not be gullible gulls. We … must preserve our talents of self-sufficiency, our genius for creating things for ourselves, our sense of thrift and our true love of independence.” (Reader’s Digest, Oct. 1950, p. 32.)
Now a contrasting clipping entitled, “It’s a Good Thing There Wasn’t Anybody Around to Help the Pilgrims”:
“They landed in a forbidding wilderness. No Federal Housing, so they went to work and built their own. No Free Stamp Program, so they raised what food they ate, and when they didn’t raise enough, went without.
“No Free Schools, so mothers taught their children. No Recreational Programs—they were too busy working. No anti-draft riots—everyone was expected to share in the protection of his country. No Social Security—no security at all, except what each provided for himself.
“But there were compensations. No rioters demanding something for nothing. No unwashed ‘students’ telling their mothers what to teach. No wasteful bureaucrats paying themselves out of the workers’ production.
“Nothing, really, for the Pilgrims but hard work and a lot of it.
“Did it pay off?
“Our standard of living proves it.” (Christian Economics, Nov. 1972, p. 25.)
Now to the Lord’s plan.
“I, the Lord, stretched out the heavens, and built the earth,” He said, “… and all things therein are mine.
“And it is my purpose to provide for my saints, for all things are mine.
“But it must needs be done in mine own way; and behold this is the way that I, the Lord, have decreed to provide for my saints, that the poor shall be exalted, in that the rich are made low.
“For the earth is full, and there is enough and to spare; yea, I prepared all things, and have given unto the children of men to be agents unto themselves.” (D&C 104:14–17.)
The underlying principles of God’s economy for the temporal salvation of His saints are clearly revealed in this scripture. Proclaiming Himself the creator of the earth and all things therein, He speaks of Himself as supreme landlord. He announces that it is His purpose to provide for His saints, at the same time declaring, “The earth is full, and there is enough and to spare.” He warns, however, that providing for His saints “must needs be done in mine own way.”
“And … this,” He continues, “is the way that I, the Lord, have decreed to provide for my saints, that the poor shall be exalted, in that the rich are made low.”
Following His way is indispensable to a well-ordered society.
We Latter-day Saints know that all men are brothers and sisters—“begotten sons and daughters unto God” (D&C 76:24)—that we are responsible for the welfare of one another. These concepts are inherent in all the doctrines of the gospel.
We know that the ills of this troubled world have come about because men have failed to do what the Lord has commanded them. This applies to economic problems as well as to all other ills. We know also that the only cure for them is to do all things whatsoever the Lord our God commands us.
We know that the day will come when “every man” shall share equally in the good things of earth, “according to his family, according to his circumstances and his wants and needs.” (D&C 51:3.) We also know that attaining such equality must await the time when all men willingly work to sustain themselves and, motivated by love for their fellowmen, liberally “impart” of their substance unto the poor and the needy, “according to the law of [the] gospel.” (D&C 104:18.)
It is the responsibility of every Latter-day Saint to work and so impart of his substance, regardless of the shifting standards of this world. We must uphold these principles and oppose every derogation of them. We must be careful not to adopt the commonly accepted practice of expecting the government or anyone other than ourselves to supply us with the necessities of life.
The practice of coveting and receiving unearned benefits has now become so fixed in our society that even men of great wealth, and possessing the means to produce more wealth, are expecting the government to guarantee them a profit. Elections often turn on what the candidates promise to do for voters from government funds. This practice, if universally accepted and implemented in any society, will make slaves of its citizens.
We cannot afford to become wards of the government, even though we have a legal right to do so. It requires too great a sacrifice in self-respect and in political, temporal, and spiritual independence.
Let us work for what we need. Let us be self-reliant and independent. Salvation can be obtained on no other principle. Salvation is an individual matter, and we must work out our own salvation, in temporal as well as in spiritual things.
Paul’s statement, “By grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast” (Eph. 2:8–9), has been misunderstood. Some have interpreted it to mean that works are not necessary. This is an erroneous conclusion.
The truth is that we are saved by grace only after all we ourselves can do. (See 2 Ne. 25:23.) There will be no government dole which can get us through the pearly gates. Nor will anybody go into the celestial kingdom who wants to go there on the works of someone else. Every man must go through on his own merits. We might just as well learn this here and now.
The first principle of action in the Lord’s plan for our temporal salvation is, therefore, to take care of ourselves. This principle is so important that the Lord said to Adam, as he was about to leave the Garden of Eden, “Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the fruit of the tree of which I commanded thee, saying—Thou shalt not eat of it, cursed shall be the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life.” (Moses 4:23.)
Note that the curse was not placed upon Adam, but upon the ground for Adam’s sake. Rather than a curse upon Adam, it was a blessing to him. It launched him and his posterity upon the only course by which they can eventually reach that perfection enjoined by the Master. The fact that when the Lord cursed the ground to bring forth “thorns” and “thistles,” thereby requiring men to labor in order to derive a living from it, it was for their “sake”—meaning “good,” “advantage,” or “well-being?” This cannot be overemphasized.
Since that eventful day in Eden, the Lord has frequently reemphasized the fact that individual effort is the basic principle in His economy—both spiritual and temporal. Let us never forget that the Lord’s way to provide for His saints is “that the poor shall be exalted, in that the rich are made low.” (D&C 104:16.)
The poor can be exalted when and only when they are enabled to obtain independence and self-respect through their own industry and thrift. Our duty is to enable them to do this.
“The rich are made low” when they evidence their obedience to the second great commandment—“Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself” (Matt. 22:39)—by imparting of their substance “according to the law of [the] gospel, unto the poor and the needy.” (D&C 104:18.)
In addition to maintaining our independence and self-respect by means of our own industry, and seeing to it that those to whom we extend Church welfare assistance do likewise to the full extent of their ability, we must never forget to honor our fathers and mothers. Since our obligation to so honor them is often observed in the breach and since the rewards for honoring them are so great and the penalty for failing to do so is so severe, I shall explain our obligation as I did in the October 1974 Welfare Services meeting, in the words of President Clark:
“This principle,” said he, “runs back to Mount Sinai.” It was there as you will remember that Moses received the “ten commandments, and one of them was ‘Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.’ (Ex. 20:12.) … I call your attention [first] to the command and then to the promise: ‘Honor thy father and thy mother’—the command. The promise: ‘That thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.’ …
“Israel departed from this command, and in the time of the Savior the Jews had gotten so far away from it that the Lord took occasion to explain it to them and told them what it meant. You remember that on one occasion the Jews—[that is] the Scribes and Pharisees—came up from Jerusalem, trying to trick the Savior as usual, so they asked him why his disciples ate with unwashen hands, contrary to the teachings of the traditions of the fathers. The Savior did with them what he so frequently did with those who tried to entrap him, he answered their question by asking another, and the question which he asked of them was:
“‘Why do ye also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition?
“‘For God commanded, saying, Honour thy father and mother: …
“‘But ye say, Whosoever shall say to his father or his mother, It is a gift, by whatsoever thou mightest be profited by me;
“‘And honour not his father or his mother, he shall be free. Thus have ye made the commandment of God of none effect by your tradition.’ (Matt. 15:3–6 [italics added].)
“That is the account in Matthew. The account is virtually the same in Mark:
“‘For Moses said, [and Mark quotes] Honour thy father and thy mother; and, Whoso curseth father or mother, let him die the death:
“‘But ye say, If a man shall say to his father or mother, It is Corban, that is to say, a gift, by whatsoever thou mightest be profited by me; he shall be free.
“‘And ye suffer him no more to do ought for his father or his mother.’ (Mark 7:10–12 [italics added].)
“This means [explains President Clark] that in place of observing the responsibility imposed by the Lord upon children to care for their parents, Israel had gone so astray that whenever a son or a daughter wanted to rid himself or herself of the obligation of caring for father and mother, he proceeded to say to father or mother, ‘From this time on, … I repudiate my obligation, and whatever I give to you is a gift (Corban), and not given under the commandment of the Lord.’”
Today the temptation, and too often the practice, is to turn father and mother over to public welfare and let the state take care of them. But to return to President Clark’s treatment of the subject:
“After calling their attention to this, the Savior said unto them, as recorded by Matthew:
“‘Ye hypocrites [that was the Savior’s statement about those who taught that we needn’t take care of our parents], well did Esaias prophesy of you, saying,
“‘This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoreth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me.
“‘But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.’ (Matt. 15:7–9 [italics added].)
“Now I repeat to you, brethren, that command is without restriction. It runs to Israel, in my view, wherever Israel may be, and its promise as well as its command follows Israel in whatever land they may reside.
“‘Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.’ (Ex. 20:12 [italics added].)
“This land of ours is a chosen land to Joseph. I believe the promise applies here. In the Book of Mormon we are told what will happen to those who dwell on this land if they do not keep the commandments of God, if they do not worship Jesus the Christ who is the God of this land. He tells what will come to us when we are full of iniquity, and if we disobey that commandment of the Lord we are thus far under the condemnation which the Lord decreed, and we are thus far forward on the road to being full of iniquity.”
President Clark concluded this particular discussion with this reminder:
“I have given you what the Lord has said. We may use our agency as to whether we shall obey or disobey; and if we disobey we must abide the penalty.” (“Fundamentals of the Church Welfare Program,” October 6, 1944, pp. 3–5.)
That the Lord will give us the wisdom and the courage to understand and live by this principle, I humbly pray, in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

The Book of Mormon is the Word of God...

Our homes are not as strong unless we are using it to bring our children to Christ. Our families may be corrupted by worldly trends and teachings unless we know how to use the book to expose and combat the falsehoods in socialism, organic evolution, rationalism, humanism, etc. ~President Ezra Taft Benson


Is Socialism the United Order?

Elder Marion G. Romney Of the Council of the Twelve Apostles
General Conference, April 1966
What I am going to give you now is a statement I have prepared in answer to the question, "Is Socialism the United Order?" Some of you may have already heard it. This is the first time I have ever attempted to give a talk a second time. My excuse is that the Brethren have asked me to give this talk here tonight.
I suppose the best way to start a comparison of socialism and the United Order is with a definition of the terms. Webster defines socialism as:
Socialism defined
"A political and economic theory of social organization based on collective or governmental ownership and democratic management of the essential means for the production and distribution of goods; also, a policy or practice based on this theory." (Webster's New International Dictionary, 2nd ed. unabridged, 1951.)
George Bernard Shaw, the noted Fabian Socialist, said that:
"Socialism, reduced to its simplest legal and practical expression, means the complete discarding of the institution of private property by transforming it into public property and the division of the resultant income equally and indiscriminately among the entire population." (Encyclopedia Britannica, 1946 ed., Vol. 20, p. 895.)
George Douglas Howard Cole, M.A. noted author and university reader in economics at Oxford, who treats socialism for the Encyclopedia Britannica, says that because of the shifting sense in which the word has been used, "a short and comprehensive definition is impossible. We can only say," he concludes, "that Socialism is essentially a doctrine and a movement aiming at the collective organization of the community in the interest of the mass of the people by means of the common ownership and collective control of the means of production and exchange." (Ibid., p. 888.)
Socialism arose "out of the economic division in society." During the nineteenth century its growth was accelerated as a protest against "the appalling conditions prevailing in the workshops and factories and the unchristian spirit of the spreading industrial system."
Communism, starting point
The "Communist Manifesto" drafted by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels for the Communist League in 1848 is generally regarded as the starting point of modern socialism. (Ibid., p. 890.)
The distinction between socialism, as represented by the various Socialist and Labour parties of Europe and the New World, and Communism, as represented by the Russians, is one of tactics and strategy rather than of objective. Communism is indeed only socialism pursued by revolutionary means and making its revolutionary method a canon of faith. Communists like other socialists, (1) believe in the collective control and ownership of the vital means of production and (2) seek to achieve through state action the coordinated control of the economic forces of society. They (the Communists) differ from other socialists in believing that this control can be secured, and its use in the interests of the workers ensured, only by revolutionary action leading to the dictatorship of the proletariat and the creation of a new proletarian state as the instrument of change. (Ibid.)
German Socialism
A major rift between so-called orthodox socialism and communist socialism occurred in 1875 when the German Social Democratic party set forth its objective of winning power by taking over control of the bourgeois state, rather than by overthrowing it. In effect, the German Social Democratic party became a parliamentary party, aiming at the assumption of political power by constitutional means.
Fabian Society
In the 1880's a small group of intellectuals set up in England the Fabian Society, which has had a major influence on the development of modern orthodox socialism. Fabianism stands "for the evolutionary conception of socialism . . . endeavoring by progressive reforms and the nationalization of industries, to turn the existing state into a `welfare state.'" Somewhat on the order of the German Social Democrats Fabians aim "at permeating the existing parties with socialistic ideas [rather] than at creating a definitely socialistic party." They appeal "to the electorate not as revolutionaries but as constitutional reformers seeking a peaceful transformation of the system." (Ibid.)
Forms and policies of socialism
The differences in forms and policies of socialism occur principally in the manner in which they seek to implement their theories.
They all advocate:
(1) That private ownership of the vital means of production be abolished and that all such property "pass under some form of coordinated public control." (2) That the power of the state be used to achieve their aims. (3) "That with a change in the control of industry will go a change in the motives which operate in the industrial system. . . ." (Ibid.) So much now for the definition of socialism. I have given you these statements in the words of socialists and scholars, not my words, so they have had their hearing.
The United Order
Now as to the United Order, and here I will give the words of the Lord and not my words. The United Order the Lord's program for eliminating the inequalities among men, is based upon the underlying concept that the earth and all things therein belong to the Lord and that men hold earthly possessions as stewards accountable to God.
On January 2, 1831, the Lord revealed to the Prophet Joseph Smith that the Church was under obligation to care for the poor. (See D&C 38.) Later he said:
"I, the Lord, stretched out the heavens, and built the earth, . . .and all things therein are mine.
"And it is my purpose to provide for my saints, for all things are mine.
"But it must needs be done in mine own way. . . ." (D&C 104:14-16.)
Consecration and stewardship
On February 9, 1831, the Lord revealed to the Prophet what his way was. (See D&C 42.) In his way there were two cardinal principles: (1) consecration and (2) stewardship.
To enter the United Order, when it was being tried, one consecrated all his possessions to the Church by a "covenant and a deed which" could not "be broken." (D&C 42:30.) That is, he completely divested himself of all of his property by conveying it to the Church.
Having thus voluntarily divested himself of title to all his property, the consecrator received from the Church a stewardship by a like conveyance. This stewardship could be more or less than his original consecration, the object being to make "every man equal according to his family, according to his circumstances and his wants and needs." (D&C 51:3.)
This procedure preserved in every man the right to private ownership and management of his property. At his own option he could alienate it or keep and operate it and pass it on to his heirs.
The intent was, however, for him to so operate his property as to produce a living for himself and his dependents. So long as he remained in the order, he consecrated to the Church the surplus he produced above the needs and wants of his family. This surplus went into a storehouse from which stewardships were given to others and from which the needs of the poor were supplied.
These divine principles are very simple and easily understood. A comparison of them with the underlying principles of socialism reveal similarities and basic differences.
Comparisons and contrasts: Similarities
The following are similarities: Both (1) deal with production and distribution of goods; (2) aim to promote the well-being of men by eliminating their economic inequalities; (3) envision the elimination of the selfish motives in our private capitalistic industrial system.
Now the differences:
(1) The cornerstone of the United Order is belief in God and acceptance of him as Lord of the earth and the author of the United Order. Socialism, wholly materialistic, is founded in the wisdom of men and not of God. Although all socialists may not be atheists, none of them in theory or practice seek the Lord to establish his righteousness.
(2) The United Order is implemented by the voluntary free-will actions of men, evidenced by a consecration of all their property to the Church of God. One time the Prophet Joseph Smith asked a question by the brethren about the inventories they were taking. His answer was to the effect, "You don't need to be concerned about the inventories. Unless a man is willing to consecrate everything he has, he doesn't come into the United Order." (Documentary History of the Church, Vol. 7, pp. 412-13.) On the other hand, socialism is implemented by external force, the power of the state.
(3) In harmony with church belief, as set forth in the Doctrine and Covenants, "that no government can exist in peace, except such laws are framed and held inviolate as will secure to each individual the free exercise of conscience, the right and control of property" (D&C 134:2), the United Order is operated upon the principle of private ownership and individual management.
God-given agency preserved in United Order
Thus in both implementation and ownership and management of property, the United Order preserves to men their God-given agency, while socialism deprives them of it.
(4) The United Order is non-political. Socialism is political, both in theory and practice. It is thus exposed to, and riddled by, the corruption that plagues and finally destroys all political governments that undertake to abridge man's agency.
(5) A righteous people is a prerequisite to the United Order. Socialism argues that it as a system will eliminate the evils of the profit motive.
The United Order exalts the poor and humbles the rich. In the process both are sanctified. The poor, released from the bondage and humiliating limitations of poverty, are enabled as free men to rise to their full potential, both temporally and spiritually. The rich, by consecration and by imparting of their surplus for the benefit of the poor, not by constraint but willingly as an act of free will, evidence that charity for their fellowmen characterized by Mormon as "the pure love of Christ." (Moro. 7:47.)
Socialism not United Order
No, brethren, socialism is not the United Order. However, notwithstanding my abhorrence of it, I am persuaded that socialism is the wave of the present and of the foreseeable future. It has already taken over or is contending for control in most nations.
"At the end of the year [1964] parties affiliated with the [Socialist] International were in control of the governments of Great Britain, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Israel, and the Malagasy Republic. They had representatives in coalition cabinets in Austria, Belgium, Iceland, Italy, Luxembourg, and Switzerland, constituted the chief opposition in France, India, Japan, the Netherlands, New Zealand and West Germany; and were significant political forces in numerous other countries. Many parties dominant in governments in Africa, Asia, and Latin America announced that their aim was a socialist society." (Encyclopedia Britannica, 1965 Book of the Year, p. 736.)
United States has adopted much socialism
We here in the United States, in converting our government into a social welfare state, have ourselves adopted much of socialism. Specifically, we have to an alarming degree adopted the use of the power of the state in the control and distribution of the fruits of industry. We are on notice according to the words of the President, that we are going much further, for he is quoted as saying:
"We're going to take all the money we think is unnecessarily being spent and take it from the `haves' and give it to the `have nots.'" (1964 Congressional Record, p. 6142, Remarks of the President to a Group of Leaders of Organizations of Senior Citizens in the Fish Room, March 24, 1964.)
Socialism takes: United Order gives
That is the spirit of socialism: We're going to take. The spirit of the United Order is: We're going to give.
We have also gone a long way on the road to public ownership and management of the vital means of production. In both of these areas the free agency of Americans has been greatly
abridged. Some argue that we have voluntarily surrendered this power to government. Be this as it may, the fact remains that the loss of freedom with the consent of the enslaved, or even at their request, is nonetheless slavery.
As to the fruits of socialism, we all have our own opinions. I myself have watched its growth in our own country and observed it in operation in many other lands. But I have yet to see or hear of its freeing the hearts of men of selfishness and greed or of its bringing peace, plenty, or freedom. These things it will never bring, nor will it do away with idleness and promote "industry, thrift and self-respect," for it is founded, in theory and in practice, on force, the principle of the evil one.
As to the fruits of the United Order I suggest you read Moses 7:16-18 and 4 Nephi 2-3, 15-16. If we had time we could review the history, what little we know, of Zion in the days of Enoch and about what happened among the Nephites under those principles of the United Order in the first two centuries following the time of the Savior.
What can we do?
Now what can we do about it?
As I recently reminded my wife of the moratorium on the United Order, which the Lord placed in 1834 (D&C 105:34), that socialism is taking over in the nations and that its expressed aims will surely fail, she spiritedly put to me the question: "Well, then, what would you suggest, that we just sit on our hands in despair and do nothing?" Perhaps similar questions have occurred to you. The answer is, "No, by no means!" We have much to do, and fortunately for us the Lord has definitely prescribed the course we should follow with respect to socialism and the United Order.
Constitution God-inspired
He has told us that in preparation for the restoration of the gospel, he himself established the Constitution of the United States, and he has plainly told us why he established it. I hope I can get this point over to you. He said he established the Constitution to preserve to men their free agency, because the whole gospel of Jesus Christ presupposes man's untrammeled exercise of free agency. Man is in the earth to be tested. The issue as to whether he succeeds or fails will be determined by how he uses his agency. His whole future, through all eternity, is at stake. Abridge man's agency, and the whole purpose of his mortality is thwarted. Without it, the Lord says, there is no existence. (See D&C 93:30.) The Lord so valued our agency that he designed and dictated "the laws and constitution" required to guarantee it. This he explained in the revelation in which he instructed the Prophet Joseph Smith to appeal for help,
Just and holy principles
"According to the laws and constitution of the people, which I have suffered to be established, and should be maintained for the rights and protection of all flesh, according to just and holy principles;
"That every man may act in doctrine and principle pertaining to futurity, according to the moral agency which I have given unto him, that every man may be accountable for his own sins in the day of judgment.
"And for this purpose have I established the Constitution of this land by the hands of wise men whom I raised up unto this very purpose. . . ." (D&C 101:77-78, 80.)
Sustain Constitutional law
Previously he had said:
"And now, verily I say unto you concerning the laws of the land, it is my will that my people should observe to do all things whatsoever I command them.
"And that law of the land which is constitutional, supporting that principle of freedom in maintaining rights and privileges, belongs to all mankind and is justifiable before me.
"Therefore, I, the Lord, justify you, and your brethren of my church, in befriending that law which is the constitutional law of the land [the test of its constitutionality in the words of the Lord here is whether it preserves man's agency];
"And as pertaining to law of man, whatsoever is more or less than this cometh of evil.
"I, the Lord God, make you free therefore ye are free indeed; and the law [that is, constitutional law] also maketh you free.
"Nevertheless, when the wicked rule the people mourn.
"Wherefore, honest men and wise men should be sought for diligently, and good men and wise men ye should observe to uphold; otherwise whatsoever is less than these cometh of evil." (D&C 98:4-10.)
These scriptures declare the Constitution to be a divine document. They tell us that "according to just and holy principles," the Constitution and the law of the land which supports the "principle of freedom in maintaining rights and privileges, belongs to all mankind, and is justifiable before" God; that, "as pertaining to [the] law of man whatsoever is more or less than this, cometh of evil." They remind us that the Lord has made us free and that laws that are constitutional will also make us free.
"When the wicked rule, the people mourn"
Right at this point, almost as if he were warning us against what is happening today, the Lord said: "Nevertheless, when the wicked rule the people mourn." Then, that we might know with certainty what we should do about it, he concluded: "Wherefore, honest men and wise men should be sought for diligently, and good men and wise men ye should observe to uphold. . . ."
In its context this instruction, according to my interpretation, can only mean that we should seek diligently for and support men to represent us in government who are "wise" enough to understand freedom—as provided for in the Constitution and as implemented in the United Order—and who are honest enough and good enough to fight to preserve it.
". . . under no other government in the world could the Church have been established," said President J. Reuben Clark, Jr., and he continued:
". . . if we are to live as a Church, and progress, and have the right to worship as we are worshipping here today, we must have the great guarantees that are set up by our Constitution. There is no other way in which we can secure these guarantees." (Conference Report, October 1942, pp. 58-59.)
Now, not forgetting our duty to eschew socialism and support the just and holy principles of the Constitution, as directed by the Lord, I shall conclude these remarks with a few comments concerning what we should do about the United Order.
What to do about United Order
The final words of the Lord in suspending the order were: "And let those commandments which I have given concerning Zion and her law be executed and fulfilled, after her redemption." (D&C 105:34.)
Further implementation of the order must therefore await the redemption of Zion. Here Zion means Jackson County, Missouri. When Zion is redeemed, as it most certainly shall be, it will be redeemed under a government and by a people strictly observing those "just and holy principles" of the Constitution that accord to men their God-given moral agency, including the right to private property. If, in the meantime, socialism takes over in America, it will have to be displaced, if need be, by the power of God, because the United Order can never function under socialism or "the welfare state," for the good and sufficient reason that the principles upon which socialism and the United Order are conceived and operated are inimical.
In the meantime, while we await the redemption of Zion and the earth and the establishment of the United Order, we as bearers of the priesthood should live strictly by the principles of the United Order insofar as they are embodied in present church practices, such as the fast offering, tithing, and the welfare activities. Through these practices we could as individuals, if we were of a mind to do so, implement in our own lives all the basic principles of the United Order.
As you will recall, the principles underlying the United Order are consecration and stewardships and then the contribution of surpluses into the bishop's storehouse. When the law of tithing was instituted four years after the United Order experiment was suspended, the Lord required the people to put "all their surplus property . . . into the hands of the bishop" (D&C 119:1); thereafter they were to "pay one-tenth of all their interest annually. . . ." (D&C 119:4.) This law, still in force, implements to a degree at least the United Order principle of stewardships, for it leaves in the hands of each person the ownership and management of the property from which he produces the needs of himself and family. Furthermore to use again the words of President Clark:
". . . in lieu of residues and surpluses which were accumulated and built up under the United Order, we, today, have our fast offerings, our Welfare donations, and our tithing all of which may be devoted to the care of the poor, as well as for the carrying on of the activities and business of the Church."
What prohibits us from giving as much in fast offerings as we would have given in surpluses under the United Order? Nothing but our own limitations.
Furthermore, we had under the United Order a bishop's storehouse in which were collected the materials from which to supply the needs and the wants of the poor. We have a bishop's storehouse under the Welfare Plan, used for the same purpose. . . .
"We have now under the Welfare Plan all over the Church, . . . land projects . . . farmed for the benefit of the poor. . . .
"Thus . . . in many of its great essentials, we have, [in] the Welfare Plan . . . the broad essentials of the United Order. Furthermore, having in mind the assistance which is being given from time to time . . . to help set people up in business or in farming, we have a plan which is not essentially unlike that which was in the United Order when the poor were given portions from the common fund."
It is thus apparent that when the principles of tithing and the fast are properly observed and the Welfare Plan gets fully developed and wholly into operation, "we shall not be so very far from carrying out the great fundamentals of the United Order." (Conference Report, October 1942, pp. 51-58.)
The only limitation on you and me is within ourselves.
A Prayer:
And now in line with these remarks for three things I pray:
(1) That the Lord will somehow quicken our understanding of the differences between socialism and the United Order and give us a vivid awareness of the awful portent of those differences. (2) That we will develop the understanding, the desire, and the courage born of the Spirit, to eschew socialism and to support and sustain, in the manner revealed and as interpreted by the Lord, those just and holy principles embodied in the Constitution of the United States for the protection of all flesh, in the exercise of their God-given agency. (3) That through faithful observance of the principles of tithing, the fast, and the welfare program, we will prepare ourselves to redeem Zion and ultimately live the United Order, in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

The United Order Vs. Communism

by President J. Reuben Clark Jr., First Counselor in the First Presidency. The United Order Vs. Communism. General Conference Report October 1942, 2nd Session.
I have been trying for a week to relieve you of this experience, but Brother McKay, so kind, so sweet, and so merciful, has been perfectly adamant. So I stand before you here, not to preach, but to counsel with you.
There is a great deal of misapprehension among our people regarding the United Order.
I have not been able to believe that the United Order meant what some people have thought it meant, so within the last months I have spent quite a little time reading the revelations thereon, also reading our history, and at the same time giving some consideration to a dissertation which has been written regarding the Order.
There is a growing-I fear it is growing-sentiment that communism and the United Order are virtually the same thing, communism being merely the forerunner, so to speak, of a reestablishment of the United Order. I am informed that ex-bishops, and indeed, bishops, who belong to communistic organizations, are preaching this doctrine. So I thought that perhaps if I said just a few words to you tonight regarding the way I interpret the revelations that are printed about this in the D&C (if there are other revelations about the Order, I do not know of them), I thought if I said something about it, it might be helpful. I recommend that you, my brethren, read a few of the Sections of the D&C which cover this matter, beginning with Sections 42 and 51. ( See also Sections 70, 78, 82, 83, 85, 90, 92, 96, and 104.) If you will go over these sections, I feel sure that you will find that my explanation of the United Order will be substantially accurate.
Early Deviations
I may say to begin with, that in practice the brethren in Missouri got away, in their attempts to set up the United Order, from the principles set out in the revelations. This is also true of the organizations set up here in Utah after the Saints came to the Valleys. So far as I have seen there has been preserved only one document that purports to be a legal instrument used in connection with the setting up of the United Order, and that document is without date. It is said to have been found among the papers of Bishop Partridge. It was a “lease-lend” document. You may have heard that phrase before. Under this instrument the Church leased to Titus Billings a certain amount of real estate and loaned him a certain amount of personal property.
This instrument is not in accordance with the principle laid down in the revelations touching upon the United Order.
The basic principle of all the revelations on the United Order is that everything we have belongs to the Lord; therefore, the Lord may call upon us for any and all of the property which we have, because it belongs to Him. This, I repeat, is the basic principle. (D. &. C. 104: 14-17, 54-57)
One of the places in which some of the brethren are going astray is this: There is continuous reference in the revelations to equality among the brethren, but I think you will find only one place where that equality is really described, though it is referred to in other revelations. That revelation (D. & C. 51:3) affirms that every man is to be “equal according to his family, according to his circumstances and his wants and needs.” ( See also D. & C. 82 17; 78: 5-6. ) Obviously, this is not a case of “dead level” equality. It is “equality” that will vary as much as the man’s circumstances, his family, his wants and needs, may vary.
In the next place, under the United Order every man was called to consecrate to the Church all of the property which he had; the real estate was to be conveyed to the Church, as I understand the revelations, by what we would call a deed in fee simple. Thus the man’s property became absolutely the property of the Church. (D. & C. 42:30; 72:15) Then the bishop deeded back to the donor by the same kind of deed, that is, in fee simple, and also transferred to him by an equivalent instrument, so far as personal property was concerned, that amount of real and personal property, which, the two being taken together, would be required by the individual for the support of himself and his family “according to his family, according to his circumstances and his wants and needs.” This the man held as his own property. (D. & C. 42:32; 51:4-6; 83:3
In other words, basic to the United Order was the private ownership of property, every man had his own property from which he might secure that which was necessary for the support of himself and his family. There is nothing in the revelations that would indicate that this property was not freely alienable at the will of the owner. It was not contemplated that the Church should own everything or that we should become in the Church, with reference to our property and otherwise, the same kind of automaton, manikin, that communism makes out of the individual, with the State standing at the head in place of the Church.
Now, that part of a man’s property which was not turned back to him, if he had more than was needed under this rule of “equality” already stated, became the common property of the Church, and that common property was used for the support of the poor of the Church. It is spoken of in the revelations as the “residue” of property. ( D. & C. 42:34-36)
Land Portions
Furthermore, it was intended, though apparently it did not work out very well, that the poor coming into Zion, and by Zion I mean, here, Missouri-the poor coming into Zion were to have given to them a “portion” of land, which land was to be either purchased from the Government (and it was planned to purchase large areas from the Government), or purchased from individuals, or received as consecrations from members of the Church. The amount of this “portion” was to be such as would make him equal to others according to his circumstances, his family, his wants and needs.
The land which you received from the bishop by deed, whether it was part of the land which you, yourself, had deeded to the Church, or whether it came as an out-right gift from the Church as just indicated, and the personal property which you received, were all together sometimes called a “portion” (D. & C. 51:4-6), sometimes a “stewardship” ( D. & C. 104:11-12), and sometimes an “inheritance.” ( D. & C. 83 3 )
As just indicated, there were other kinds of inheritances and stewardships than land or mere personal property; for example, the Prophet and others had a stewardship given to them which consisted of the revelations and commandments (D. & C. 70:1-4 ); others had given to them a stewardship involving the printing house (D. & C. 104:29-30); another stewardship was a mercantile establishment. (D. & C. 104:39-42)
I repeat that whatever a steward realized from the portion allotted to him over and above that which was necessary in order to keep his family under the standard provided, as already stated above, was turned over by the steward to the bishop, and this amount of surplus, plus the residues to which I have already referred, went into a bishop’s storehouse (D. & C. 51 13 and citations above), and the materials of the storehouse were to be used in creating portions, as above indicated, for caring for the poor (D. & C. 78:3), the widows and orphans ( D. & C. 83 6), and for the elders of the Church engaged in the ministry, who were to pay for what they received if they could, but if not, their faithful labors should answer their debt to the bishop. (D. & C. 72:11 ff)
Other Institutions
Now, as time went on and the system developed, the Lord created two other institutions besides the storehouse: one was known as the Sacred Treasury, into which was put “the avails of the sacred things in the treasury, for sacred and holy purposes.” While it is not clear, it would seem that into this treasury were to be put the surpluses which were derived from the publication of the revelations, the Book of Mormon, the Pearl of Great Price, and other similar things, the stewardship of which had been given to Joseph and others. (D. & C. 104:60-66) The Lord also provided for the creation of “Another Treasury,” and into that other treasury went the general revenues which came to the Church, such as gifts of money and those revenues derived from the improvement of stewardships as distinguished from the residues of the original consecrations and the surpluses which came from the operation of their stewardships. (D. & C. 72:11 ff)
The foregoing is the general outline as it is gathered from the revelations of the law of the United Order which the Lord spoke of as “my law.” (D. & C. 44:6; 51:15) There are passages in the revelations which, taken from their context and without having in mind the whole system, might be considered as inconsistent with some of the things which I have set out, but all such passages fall into line if the whole program is looked at as contained in all of the revelations.
Private Ownership Fundamental
The fundamental principle of this system was the private ownership of property. Each man owned his portion, or inheritance, or stewardship, with an absolute title, which he could alienate, or hypothecate, or otherwise treat as his own. The Church did not own all of the property, and the life under the United Order was not a communal life, as the Prophet Joseph, himself said, (History of the Church, Volume III, p. 28). The United Order is an individualistic system, not a communal system.
The Welfare Plan and the United Order
We have all said that the Welfare Plan is not the United Order and was not intended to be. However, I should like to suggest to you that perhaps, after all, when the Welfare Plan gets thoroughly into operation-it is not so yet-we shall not be so very far from carrying out the great fundamentals of the United Order.
In the first place I repeat again, the United Order recognized and was built upon the principle of private ownership of property; all that a man had and lived upon under the United Order, was his own. Quite obviously, the fundamental principle of our system today is the ownership of private property.
In the next place, in lieu of residues and surpluses which were accumulated and built up under the, United Order, we, today, have our fast offerings, our Welfare donations, and our tithing, all of which may be devoted to the care of the poor, as well as for the carrying on of the activities and business of the Church. After all, the United Order was primarily designed to build up a system under which there should be no abjectly poor, and this is the purpose, also, of the Welfare Plan.
In this connection it should be observed that it is clear from these earlier revelations, as well as from our history, that the Lord had very early to tell the people about the wickedness of idleness, and the wickedness of greed, because the brethren who had were not giving properly, and those who had not were evidently intending to live without work on the things which were to be received from those who had property. (D. & C. 56:16-20)
Storehouses and Projects
Furthermore, we had under the United Order a bishop’s storehouse in which were collected the materials from which to supply the needs and the wants of the poor. We have a bishop’s storehouse under the Welfare Plan, used for the same purpose.
As I have already indicated, the surplus properties which came to the Church under the Law of Consecration, under the United Order, became the “common property” of the Church (D. & C. 82 18 ) and were handled under the United Order for the benefit of the poor. We have now under the Welfare Plan all over the Church, ward land projects. In some cases the lands are owned by the wards, in others they are leased by the wards or lent to them by private individuals. This land is being farmed for the benefit of the poor, by the poor where you can get the poor to work it.
We have in place of the two treasuries, the “Sacred Treasury” and “Another Treasury,” the general funds of the Church.
Thus you will see, brethren, that in many of its great essentials, we have, as the Welfare Plan has now developed, the broad essentials of the United Order. Furthermore, having in mind the assistance which is being given from time to time and in various wards to help set people up in business or in farming, we have a plan which is not essentially unlike that which was in the United Order when the poor were given portions from the common fund.
Now, brethren, the Church has made tremendous advances in the Welfare Plan. We shall have to make still greater advances. As the Message of the First Presidency said this morning, we are being told by Government officials that we face what we used to call “hard times.” If the Welfare Plan is fully operative, we shall be able to care for every destitute Latter-day Saint wherever he may be.
The Constitution
Now, I would like to say something else, brethren, again by way of counsel I shall be accused, when I do, of talking politics, and perhaps on this point I may say I do not read anonymous letters. When they come in I just throw them into the wastebasket. I only read enough of the signed scurrilous letters that are sent to know that they are scurrilous, and then they follow along. So it is useless for anyone to try to take out any personal feeling in that way.
You and I have heard all our lives that the time may come when the Constitution may hang by a thread. I do not know whether it is a thread, or a small rope by which it now hangs, but I do know that whether it shall live or die is now in the balance.
I have said to you before, brethren, that to me the Constitution is a part of my religion. In its place it is just as much a part of my religion as any other part. It is a part of my religion because it is one of those institutions which God has set up for His own purposes, and, as one of the brethren said today, set up so that this Church might be established, because under no other government in the world could the Church have been established as it has been established under this Government.
I think I would be sale in saying that my fellowship with you in the Church depends upon whether or not I accept the revelations and the principles which God has revealed. If I am not willing to do that, then I am not entitled to fellowship. Anyone else who fails to accept the revelations and the principles which God has revealed stands in precisely the same situation.
In the 101st Section of the D&C, which contains a revelation received by the Prophet in 1833, when the persecution in Missouri was at its highest, the Lord told the brethren that they should appeal for help. Then He added these verses, which I want to read to you:
According to the laws and constitution of the people, which I have suffered to be established, and should be maintained for the fights and protection of all flesh, according to just and holy principles;
That every man may act in doctrine and principle pertaining to futurity, according to the moral agency which I have given unto him, that every man may be accountable for his own sins in the day of judgment.
Therefore, it is not right that any man should be in bondage one to another.
And for this purpose have I established the Constitution of this land, by the hands of wise men whom I raised up unto this very purpose, and redeemed the land by the shedding of blood. (D. & C. 101:77-80)
Influence in the Americas
I suppose you brethren will all know, but I will recall it to your attention, that the Constitution of the United States is the basic law for all of the Americas, or Zion, as it has been defined by the Lord.
You brethren from Canada know that, your great British North America Act, in its fundamental principles, is based upon our Constitution, and you know that in the courts of Canada, the reports of our Supreme Court, and our Federal courts generally, are just as persuasive as the decisions of the courts of England, and even more so, where questions of constitutional law and constitutional interpretation are involved.
You brethren also know that from the Rio Grande down to the Horn there is no constitutional government except those that are rounded primarily upon our own Constitution. In Mexico the revolutionary party which more than a century and a quarter ago rebelled against the king of Spain and established a republic, copied almost verbatim, and practically overnight, our Constitution, and made it their own. Neither Mexico nor the others to the South interpret their Constitutions as we interpret ours. They have different standards and different canons of interpretation, for their fundamental system is the civil law, while ours is the common law. But the great essentials of that document, the Constitution of the United States, which God Himself inspired, is the law of Zion, the Americas.
The Law of Zion
So, brethren, I wish you to understand that when we begin to tamper with the Constitution we begin to tamper with the law of Zion which God Himself set up, and no one may trifle with the word of God with impunity.
Now, I am not caring today, for myself, anything at all about a political party tag. So far as I am concerned, I want to know what the man stands for. I want to know if he believes in the Constitution; if he believes in its free institutions; if he believes in its liberties, its freedom. I want to know if he believes in the Bill of Rights. I want to know if he believes in the separation of sovereign power into the three great divisions: the Legislative, the Judicial, the Executive. I want to know if he believes in the mutual independence of these, the one from the other. When I find out these things, then I know who it is who should receive my support, and I care not what his party tag is, because, brethren, if we are to live as a Church, and progress, and have the right to worship as we are worshipping here today, we must have the great guarantees that are set up by our Constitution. There is no other way in which we can secure these guarantees. You may look at the systems all over the world where the princiles of our Constitution are not controlling and in force, and you will find there dictatorship, tyranny, oppression, and, in the last analysts, slavery.
I have said enough. I believe you understand what I have said. Today, our duty transcends party allegiance; our duty today is allegiance to the Constitution as it was given to us by the Lord. Every federal officer takes an oath to support that Constitution so given. The difference between us and some of those to the South of us is this: down there, their fealty runs to individuals; here, our fealty and our allegiance run to the Constitution and to the principles which it embodies, and not to individuals.
God give us wisdom and enable us in these times of trouble and strife clearly to see our way, that we may be instrumental in sustaining the Constitution, in upholding our free institutions, our civil rights, our freedom of speech, of press, of religion, and of conscience. If we shall stand together we shall save the Constitution, just as has been foreseen, and if we do not stand together, we cannot perform this great task.
God grant that we may be true, I pray, in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.