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Thursday, March 20, 2008

Hyo Jin Moon

I've been struggling lately with so many things to post about and not knowing what to choose. Then 45 year old Hyo Jin Moon dies, and the decision is made.

Hyo Jin may not have lived an ideal life, but his position as the older brother of the True Family still effected the whole Unification movement to some positive degree. I'll be taking a week off from posting anything here as a sort of moment of silence for him.

I pray with all my heart for him to have a good afterlife, for him to become an even better person and better leader in the spirit world. I also pray for his family, that they can reamain close to him and be strong so they may be relieved of their grief.

Words of Hyo Jin Moon

Son of Unification Church founder dies
Published: March 18, 2008 at 12:21 PM

SEOUL, March 18 (UPI) -- Hyo Jin Moon, the oldest son of the Rev. Sun Myung Moon, founder of the Unification Church, died of a heart attack in Seoul. He was 45.

The younger Moon, who died Monday, was born in South Korea and grew up in the New York area, a church statement said.

He ran Manhattan Center Studios, a New York multimedia facility used by musicians and orchestras for recordings and broadcast events. He was also the founder of MC Korea and MC Japan.

Moon was a musician, performer and multimedia executive producer, producing more than a dozen albums and creating a composition catalog numbering in the thousands. He continued to perform during concerts in Asia each spring up until his death.

Before running Manhattan Center Studios, Moon worked for a decade as first president of the World Collegiate Association for the Research of Principles.

Moon spoke regularly during Sunday meetings in upstate New York, drawing on his experiences for a particular topic. His last speech, "Commitment," was delivered March 9 before he left for South Korea on a business trip.

Moon is survived by his wife, Yun Ah Choi, and four children, and five children from a previous marriage.

The Rev. Sun Myung Moon is the founder of News World Communications Inc., a media company that owns UPI.

© 2008 United Press International. All Rights Reserved.
This material may not be reproduced, redistributed, or manipulated in any form.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Nepal: Ani-poverty Initiative Launched

Through The Rising Nepal (via Google News) I've learned about a partnership between The Universal Peace Federation (UPF) - Nepal, Healing Touch, Pepsi Co., and The Chaudhary Group which takes a conservative and spiritual approach to ending poverty.

In the article below, they mention that the focus of the initiative is to enable microfinance institutions to rise up to serve the poor community. Wikipedia, has a really great article on it.

The basic idea is that poor communities don't have financial institutions in order to get loans or to save money and earn interest, and if they had some they might rise up to be not such poor communities.

A poor farmer with no land could improve his situation, for instance, if he could afford a loan to buy better irrigation equipment or more land. The poor guy might not even have proper title to the land he has because of his messed up government, so commercial financial institutions, in the interest of protecting themselves and their other customers, can't risk giving him the loan. Developing microfinance works to fix this problem, without just giving away money so that people still have their dignity and learn to help themselves better so that they grow not to need any help(or even grow enough to be able to help others, as the UPF would especially hope).

Here's something from Wikipedia that really sums it up well.

Key principles of microfinance

Key principles of microfinance were developed in 2004 by Consultative Group to Assist the Poor (CGAP) and endorsed by the Group of Eight leaders at the G8 Summit on June 10th, 2004. Among the key principles, summarizing a century and a half of development practice, are the following:

  • 1. Poor people need a variety of financial services, not just loans.
  • 4. Microfinance can pay for itself, and must do so if it is to reach very large numbers of poor people.
  • 5. Microfinance is about building permanent local financial institutions.
  • 8. The job of government is to enable financial services, not to provide them.
  • 10. The key bottleneck is the shortage of strong institutions and managers.[3]

More generally, the Principles assert that “Microfinance means building financial systems that serve the poor.” Financial systems include strong financial institutions but also much more: more competitive financial markets, better government regulatory services and better complementary services (practitioner education, auditing, etc.)

I hope it all works out, and pray especially that nobody involved in this gets greedy and tries to take advantage of the poor in Nepal.

The Universal Peace Federation has an even more detailed article by Robert Kittel (A UPI Correspondent) on it which can be read here.

He sums it up like this:

The four-party alliance will create a nationwide movement to enable underprivileged sections of the population throughout Nepal to achieve economic self-sufficiency through a combination of micro-financing and in-kind product loans, coupled with basic business training and a grassroots support system.
Below is the article from Rising Nepal.
Main News
Anti-poverty initiative launched [ 2008-3-13 ]
By A Staff Reporter
Kathmandu, Mar. 12: The Universal Peace Federation-Nepal, Healing Touch, Pepsi Co. and The Chaudhary Group Tuesday launched a joint initiative to uplift the existing standard of the poor in Nepal.

The project's aim is to realise the motto of Project Healing Touch: "Make poverty history�. The project envisages micro-level support to increase the income-generating capacity and employment opportunities in areas with high levels of poverty and will be with the support of the both the corporate sector and civil society in India and Nepal.

K.V Rajan, the former Indian Ambassador to Nepal, chairing the programme said that accumulation of wealth without being guided by social responsibility would not be justifiable.

Nirvana Chaudhary, executive director of Chaudhary Group said that micro-finance was the most effective tool to alleviate poverty.

The project aims at enabling those in the most vulnerable sections of society to earn a respectable living, be self- supporting, make a contribution to society, and live in dignity inspired by three of the fundamental pillars in the UPF philosophy as-that sustainable peace can only be built on the principle of living for the sake of others, that irrespective of religion, language, cultural or ethnic background we are essentially "One Family Under God,� and UPF's wholehearted support to fulfill the United Nations' Millennium Development Goals.

The project will initially focus on families that have suffered as a result of conflict over the past decade. It will purposely select families that have been victims of violence from both sides of the conflict. It has been agreed that pilot projects would be immediately developed in Kathmandu, Biratnagar and Gorkha, and then expanded as quickly as possible to the entire nation.

To ensure the success of the project, Pepsi Nepal said it would oversee commercial viability, monitor the projects, conduct on-site training, and further develop the corporate social responsibility concept in Nepal.

Another, entirely unrelated thing I wanted to mention, was sex. Basically, there's an article by Alan Farnham of Forbes describing how healthy it is to make love. For me, it really shows how important our sexual organs were to God when he designed them, and it seems to me that we were designed so well to make love to our spouse often and throughout our married lives.

Those poor Catholics (as well as others) are not only inciting their priests towards child molestation by not allowing them to marry, and not only are they simply and truly preventing God's plan from taking effect, but they are going against keeping their priests and nuns healthy.

Here's the article, which is not religious at all. Goodnight. I hope that, for your spiritual and physical health, you're lucky enough to have your spouse beside you tonight, or even during the day.


Saturday, March 8, 2008

Don't Raise Taxes!

First, we have something from the Heritage Foundation's email newsletter on taxes and the economy. The Heritage Foundation is, from what I understand so far, a political group focused on keeping alive Reagen conservatism. Honestly, I think I'm even a little more conservative than our past president Reagan, but I think his ideas were definitely a step in the right direction compared to most modern Republicans and Democrats.
Three myths about the Clinton tax hikes

Out on the campaign trail and in the halls of Congress, liberals are announcing plans to raise taxes—above and beyond the massive hike resulting from the expiration of the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts. They argue that tax hikes can benefit the economy. For evidence, they point to the economic growth in the 1990s after President Clinton’s 1993 tax hike.

» Take our poll: Did the Clinton tax increases boost the economy as liberals claim?

This is bad economics, Heritage tax expert J.D. Foster explains in a new analysis.

There are three myths at the center of the liberal argument for tax hikes.

  • Myth 1: The economy recovered from recession because of the 1993 tax increase.

    Fact: “The tax increase probably slowed the economy compared to the growth it would have achieved” without the hikes, Foster writes. While the economy did grow after 1993, this was hardly due to the tax increases, since “much in the context of the 1990s was conducive to prosperity.”
  • Myth 2: The late-1990s boom resulted from the 1993 tax cuts.

    The 1997 cuts to the capital gains tax rate, not the 1993 tax increases, sparked the strong growth of the late 1990s. After the prolonged recovery from the 1992 recession, Foster concludes “it was not a moment when one would expect growth to accelerate.”
  • Myth 3: The 1990s show we can raise taxes today without economic consequence.

    Fact: The 1990s demonstrate that tax cuts, not tax hikes, are the key to economic growth. Congress should therefore, at a minimum, not allow the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts to expire. They certainly shouldn’t pile more taxes onto an already struggling economy. “Taxes are now above their historical average as a share of the economy, and are rising,” Foster notes.

Second, we have a video of Carla Howell, Chairman for the Committee for Small Government, on her organization's movement to end the Massachusetts income tax.

I recommend taking a look at their website,, for more information.