How Mitt Romney’s Mormonism may shape the U.S. economy

In “Pennies from Heaven: How Mormon economics shape the G.O.P.,” Harper Magazine’s Oct 2011 cover story, author Chris Lehmann writes … Continued


In “Pennies from Heaven: How Mormon economics shape the G.O.P.,” Harper Magazine’s Oct 2011 cover story, author Chris Lehmann writes that “the business side of Mormonism is a curious agent for the faith’s deliverance into the mainstream,” and argues that “the Mormon-style gospel of wealth” is essential to understanding many of our economic debates today.


On Faith asked Harvard Business School professor and one of On Faith’s Mormon panelists, Clayton Christensen, for insight into how Latter-day Saints view fiscal matters, and how a potential President Romney, also Mormon, may approach the economy.

TIM SLOAN

Many of the major innovations in the Mormon Church were initiated by local leaders. Mitt Romney was president of his stake (archdiocese) in Boston.

Some wonder whether certain beliefs and practices in the Mormon Church help its members inordinately contribute entrepreneurship, innovation and management to the economy. Things like honesty and respect for others and their property are taught and practiced in most churches. A few other principles, however – though they can be followed by anyone and are not uniquely “Mormon” beliefs per se – might be followed more consistently in our church than in some others. I’ll summarize just two of these.

The first is a duality that is critical to successful innovation: On one side, the license to innovate must be broadly felt. And on the other side, the instinct to follow their leaders’ guidance is critical to implement or “scale” successful innovations. Few institutions balance this as well as the Mormon Church.

On the one side, we believe that the Lord told us, “For behold, it is not meet that I should command in all things. Men should be anxiously engaged in a good cause, and do many things of their own free will; for the power is in them. He that doeth not anything until he is commanded, the same is damned.” (Doctrine and Covenants, 58:26 – 29; which I have condensed). And on the other side, several times every year, we raise our hands in conference to signify that we will sustain and follow our leaders. We are an innovative but obedient people.

Many of the important programs and institutions in our church, as a result, were innovations developed by local leaders, to solve local problems. As our prophet and apostles have then learned of these innovations and their effectiveness, they have asked every congregation in the world to adopt the innovations – and almost everyone does. Our systems of welfare, teaching our children, missionary program, and our ability to help the unemployed to find work, are examples of this. Responsibility for innovation is dispersed and bottom-up. When a better way is discovered, top-down direction drives broad and uniform adoption.

This duality is rare in our economy. For example, in education many teachers and administrators don’t view innovation as their job. They do their job year after year with little change, even though they are surrounded by evidence that change is badly needed. A few have produced extraordinary innovations in teaching and learning – such as KIPP Schools and Hi-Tech High. But even the best of these innovations scale slowly. Educators instead question the innovations’ effectiveness; muster countervailing data; or hide behind regulation.

Certainly some don’t apply to their professional pursuits what they can observe at church about the importance of this duality of innovation and implementation. But for those who use their membership in the Mormon Church as a graduate school for robust principles, it pays off.

A second example: Two types of innovations affect employment. Efficiency innovations are important for our economy. But they typically get rid of jobs, as innovators find ways to produce more with less. Disruptive innovations, in contrast, are products and services that are so much more simple and affordable that many more people can own and use them. Nearly all of the net creation of new jobs in our economy are rooted in disruptive innovation – innovations that bring higher standards of living to the bottom of the market – and then move up.

Because we have no professional clergy, members care for each other, and there is no hierarchy amongst us. For a time, for example, Mitt Romney was president of the stake (archdiocese) in Boston. Two of his bishops (ministers) who were leaders of two congregations were a professor at MIT and a man who worked the night shift loading and unloading trucks for UPS. When Romney finished his term as president, a policeman took his place. Many of those who join the church are poor – but we all rally to help them improve. It is the job of everyone. Membership in the Mormon Church helps you build an instinct, based upon love and service, for disruption – enabling those at the low-income end of the market, to move up. Our missionary service reinforces this instinct.

Some of the most successful Mormon businessmen built their companies disruptively, by enabling those at the low end to enjoy access to things that previously were too expensive. Marriott didn’t start as a hotel, but as a drive-through restaurant. George Romney transformed American Motors with the Rambler – from the bottom. Dave Neeleman’s Jet Blue followed the same pattern. And this instinct drove former Utah Governor and HHS Secretary Mike Leavitt to create Western Governors University - a very successful online university helping students who otherwise could not get the training to get better jobs.

Again, Mormons don’t have a corner on disruption, by any measure. I simply offer in this essay my personal observation that some of the things that I and others have learned in our church actually are quite helpful in other spheres as well.

I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and am a professor at the Harvard Business School. The observations in this essay are his own, and are not positions of my church or my employer.

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  • nicholsdaves

    Mormonism already has shaped the U.S. Economy.

    Russell Pearce along with Supremests, wrote and sponsored the E-verify Law, and Arizona’s Hate Immigrant SB1070 Law.

    The Mass Exodus of Good Hard working Immigrants has left Entire States like Arizona, California, Florida, Ect. vastly vacated, causing the “Foreclosure Crisis,” and completely halting Construction/Growth, costing millions of Americans their construction related jobs.
    These States are now left with massive excesses of Government Services, and matching Budget Shortfalls.

    Fact: January 2008 = The start of the E-verify Law and the I.C.E. Deportation/Incarceration Programs.

    Fact: January 2008 Also = The start of “The Worst Recession in U.S. History.”

    This is No Co incidence!

    “America is great because it is good, when it ceases to be good, it ceases to be great.”
    Alex DeTocqueville

    Deporting good hard working “Human Beings” away from their Legal Citizen Children is Not Good!

    Wake up America We are Far Better than this!

    This is our I.C.E.’d Economy, and we deserve it!

    Fact: In Arizona Mormons are litteraly teamed up with White Supremest, including Russell Pearce’s Neo Nazi Buddies.
    “Choose the Right?”

    To: Good and Brotherhood, from Sea to shining Sea.

  • Rhino401

    @nichols: First off, kudos for not being insane like LOL. At least your argument has a few facts and some logic to it. That said, I do disagree with the logic. The housing crisis did not start in Arizona, it started in California. It also did not start because of ICE. It started because of subprime mortgages and massive over lending and onver building. You really can’t blame a crashed housing market in New York, or Florida, or California for that matter, on an Arizona immigration law. It just does not make any sense.

  • ccnl1

    The Mormons already pay a flat tax/tithe of 10%. If Romney wins the election we all will be paying the 10% plus 15% for a flat tax/tithr of 25%. He will appoint the current Mormon prophet has his tax collector eliminating the IRS.

  • sanjivb

    Mitto could also bring the age-old Mormon principle of flip-flopping into the White House.

    The Church has repeatedly about-turned on core issues in the interests of expanding and propagating its power and wealth. Hence the 180’s on polygamy, the Adam-God doctrine and that grudging, foot dragging acceptance of dark-skinned people into the priesthood. The LDS Church began as an almost communistic organization, breaking the prevailing codes of sexual morality and choosing to live apart from the rest of us Gentiles. Today, it is the opposite on all counts – it wants acceptance, power, it is overtly capitalist and conservative, and it’s even claiming the pulpit when it comes to sexual morality. How the leopard changed its spots.

    This kind of duplicity is already transparent in Romney – if a man can flip flop on abortion, gun control, healthcare, minimum wage…. then he’s flying the Mormon flag already.

    http://www.secretsandwives.com

  • manwaringjd

    Your imagination…..

  • tommyh9999yahoocom

    San:

    1. Joseph Smith was the first white leader of an all white Church to ordain black men to the priesthood in the 1830s. It’s called disruptive innovation and historians think that Joseph Smith’s abolitionist views while his run for President actually influenced Abraham Lincoln.

    2. Last time I checked, Abraham and Jacob were polygamists in the Old Testament, and for about 250 years Christian Jews were polygamists which later ended.

    3. Last time I checked history, the Mormons were DRIVEN from their homes multiple times (from Ohio, from Missouri, and from Illinois) to eventually seek refuge in the Great Basin territory because the United States didn’t have the political will to allow the Mormons their religious freedom and constitutional freedoms.

    4. If the Mormons broke codes of sexual immorality, then Abraham and Jacob were the early innovators.

    5. A majority of Churches claim the pulpit to “talk” sexual morality, but studies show that Mormons are very good and LIVING morally clean lives.

    6. As for Adam-God doctrines, priesthood bans, or any other change in Church policy, such changes are not 180 degree turns, but the continued operation of continual revelation amongst a society of human beings invited to perfect themselves over generations of times.

    But ultimately your analogy fails as to Romney: Romney has changed BACK his position on abortion. No “flip-flop” there.

    As for “gun control” the policy has many components which should be evaluated from time to time – Romney is for the right to bear arms.

    As for health care – Romney has stood firm on his decisions to support the conservative idea of the individual mandate.

    As for minimum wage… who knows what you’re talking about – you’re probably making it up.

    The point being is that your superficial criticisms can’t hide your deepest prejudices about the Mormon Romney.

    My guess is that in another time, you just might be a mob-member ready to drive the “Mormons” out again.

  • nicholsdaves

    @Rhino 401,

    Do you honestly think that hundreds of thousands of dwellings vacated litterally overnight beginning at the exact same time as the “Foreclosure Crisis”, had no effect on the Banking System?

    Do you honestly believe that when entire States are drastically vacated , that this in turn has no effect on the rest of the country?

    Do you honestly believe that hundreds of thousands of vacated dwellings dumped at the same time into the Real Estate market has no effect on housing values?

    Wow you should join Bernake’s Team.

    To: Liberty.

  • wgscribe

    Tommyhfour9’s”

    …the continued operation of continual revelation amongst a society of human beings invited to perfect themselves over generations of times.”

    It sounds so ear-ticklingly inviting, but how can such obviously talented, diligent, educated, and intelligent people believe that God wants to perfect you to ultimately be a god? Godly? Yes! Spirit filled? Yes! Christlike Yes! A God? Not on, not in and not even after your life!

  • ThomasBaum

    Have you ever given a thought that one of the reasons for the “housing crisis” was/is GREED?

    Could even be the main reason.

    Might even be the only reason.

    The “prices” of housing came to be so artificially inflated that the so-called “bubble” had to eventually explode.

    By the time that some came to try to actually buy a house to live in rather than to “flip”, the prices were so out of touch with reality that the feeding frenzy of greed consumed itself.

    Something to think about, could almost say that this was capitalism running smoothly along consuming itself.

  • LOL1

    There was an article that Mitt had stocks in Fannie Mae and Fannie Mac.

    Might want to look for the article.

  • LOL1

    Drop the ‘insane’ and ‘carzy; stuff. This comes directly from the Romney family, and I have this documented. So drop your abusive matter of discrediting.

  • nicholsdaves

    @Rhino 401

    My Home Town of Mesa Arizona has been dubbed “The Epicenter of the Foreclosure Crisis in America.”

    President Obama visited Mesa Arizona in his first three months in Office due to Mesa ‘s record Foreclosure rate.

    Mesa Arizona is also fittingly the Town of Arizona Senate President Russell Pearce, the co-author of E-verify, and SB1070, with the help of known Supremest’s.

    Mesa is vastly vacated and these are vacated Immigrants Homes!

    Russel Pearce is currently in a Record Recall Election.
    Pearce has just been discovered to have run a Ringer Candidate on the Official Arizona Ballot , to split his competitors votes!

    Absolute Election Fraud! (With the help of the Dirty Tea Party.)

    He Deserves Jail Time, however he can not be charged with his crime until after the Recall Election.

    But back to the U.S. Economy, the mass Exodus/Deportation, and Incarceration of America’s Hardest Most Devoted “Human” Immigrants Absolutely is what has Tanked the U.S. Economy!

    Far worse is the Persecution of Millions of Good Immigrants , and Their Legal Citizen Family members including Children!

    To: The Greatest Country on Earth, and “Latter Day Saints.”

  • tommyh9999yahoocom

    @sanjivb

    Your fallacious arguments go something like this:

    Argument 1
    1. The LDS Church claims to receive continuing revelation from God.
    2. God’s proclamations are never wrong
    3. The LDS Church has changed it’s policies
    4. Therefore, the LDS Church has flip-flopped.

    The conclusion does not follow from the premises.

    5. A church changing a policy is always akin to flip-flopping, regardless of the circumstance.
    6. Romney belongs to a church that has issued policy changes,
    7. Therefore Mitt was taught to flip-flop by his Church.

    You cannot support premise 1.

    I hope you have something more substantive on the flip-flopping other than your bogus website. Snippets of phrases without the context, the background, or the final analysis is akin to “bearing false witness” or as we say in the political world – “spin.” You are “spinning” Romney for political gain without address his positions.

    The accusation I made against you, that you’d most likely be one of the mobbers, is accurate. Why? Because such individuals, like yourself, rely on fallacious reasoning and false accusations that are emotionally charged. You appeal to your feelings about political issues rather than to constitutional rights.

    Your characterizations are all false:
    • There is no Mormon teaching to split society into two parts, Mormons and Gentiles.
    • There are plenty of atheistic butchers in our history.
    • There is no Mormon “secret” that can’t be found on the internet. Sorry, but no cigar.
    • There is no Mormon teaching that “minorities” are inferior in any way. In fact, Mormonism teaches that all are like unto God. Recently the LDS Church came out in favor of keeping families together rather than deporting and separating them.
    • There is no prejudice or judgment of minorities in the LDS Church policy or doctrine.
    • As it relates to homosexuality, the LDS Church teaches love and tolerance but cannot stop families from traditions of acting differently. The love the sinner and hate the sin has always been a Church teach

  • tommyh9999yahoocom

    @ San (2)

    • As for blacks and the priesthood, Joseph Smith was the first white leader to ordain a black man to the priesthood IN AMERICA. The Book of Mormon states that all are alike unto God, white and black, bond and free. Joseph Smith was murdered, in part, because of his progressive abolitionist views. To date, the partial priesthood ban from 1848 and 1978, has not been fully explained by revelation or the Church. But, it was a policy (even though members thought it was a law.) So the LDS Church was the first in the 19th century to give black men the priesthood, but it was also one of the last to abandon the policy. But from the beginning, Church leaders taught that someday the ban would be lifted – and it was. That is not a flop-flop, that is a promise fulfilled.

    So San, you’re wrong on a serious of points because you fail to test your criticisms according to the context, substance, and circumstance at hand.

    Did you that recent archeological evidence in Arabia found by non-Mormon archeologists provides indirect evidence for the Book of Mormon as an ancient narrative? Yep. It’s true.

    Mormons are ready for the criticisms and Romney, while not the most perfect, is the best candidate for the presidency in 2012.

    You can’t name a better candidate.

  • tommyh9999yahoocom

    @ San:

    In my next to the last post, 5,6,7 is a new argument and so the reference to premise 1 = premise 5.

  • MinJae1

    blah, blah, blah, blah – the bitter vile of a frustrated troll.

  • MinJae1

    blah, blah, blah, blah – the bitter vile of a frustrated troll.

  • justicethinks

    This is a strange article and the comments are stranger. Now what would happen if a Jewish person were to become preident? Would you think the economy would be worse or better. Would it then be a Jewish economy? What about Obama’s fathers religion of having more then one wife does this effect the economy.

    I think this election will be about the economy but not about one’s religious preference, that may bother some but that is the truth. People are tired of the hard blows on charactors because of one’s faith or race. In this country no man has that much power that is why we have a congress and a senate. Check and balances. This is still a demorcracy even though it may appear otherwise. If the religion card is played it will BACKFIRE. Let’s look at Harry Reid, a Mormon, has he effected the economy because of his religion? The whole thing is reidculous and such a strategy is not going to work. Sorry! I think Romney will win the GOP and has a good shot at winning the 2012 election, no matter what is thrown in his boat.

  • dyinglikeflies

    Scary column. We are being gently reassured by the Mormons that while Romney will indeed allow the tenets of his faith to “inform” the way he governs, we shouldn’t be too worried because there can be positive elements to that. We have had two recent Messianic presidents, Carter and Bush the Younger, both overly “informed” by their religious beliefs. The two worst presidents in recent history. Another one of these guys? No thanks.

  • DrewT

    I can see regulatory innovation be a major focus as well.

  • JuniusPublicus

    If we’re prepared for a Mormon theocracy led by Romney and whoever is leading LDS, then I guess it’s OK.

  • sanfran6003

    justicethinks: You figure Clayton Christensen, the author of this article, is saddling Romney with his own personal views? What would be enlightening is Romney actually writing down his views of how a Romney presidency would be affected by his religious views. He probably did it already when he ran the first time. The timing is all his but I, for one, would like to see it updated and reaffirmed.

  • tommyh9999yahoocom

    Romney isn’t interested in leading a Mormon theocracy like “evangelical” Christians might pursue influence. Romney will want to represent America evenly.

  • tommyh9999yahoocom

    Dying:

    Romney has no plans or history of “messianic” leadership. Romney is a pragmatist technocrat with a heart. He’s not a charismatic evangelical leader.

    Romney is not an ideologue, he’s an effective bridge builder.

  • greggorywood

    The main problem with this article is its attempt to compare a religion whose leaders are appointed without debate with the economic woes of a secular republic, whose elected officials –by definition– serve at the pleasure of their electorate: the former is a theocracy; the latter a democracy.

    The continued self-promotion of successful and innovative LDS businessmen is a non sequitur: a handful of successful and wealthy Mormons do not promote the position that a Mormon would make a viable candidate for either party or a strong executive.

    Christensen’s attempt to advocate the bona fides of Mitt Romney as a potentially effective president by showcasing Romney’s father, J.W. Marriott and others is ironic and lost in the article. Christensen says that “the instinct to follow [our] leaders’ guidance is critical to implement or “scale” successful innovations”. Christensen is sadly wrong; Mormons do not have an ‘instinct’ to follow their leaders: they are commanded to do so. From early childhood and well into their adult years Mormons are taught in Sunday school to ‘follow the prophet’. For example: in October, 2010, a sermon given at the semi-annual general conference for the LDS church, the following exhortation was proffered: “the only sure and secure road to protection in this life comes through trusting in and obeying the counsel from the prophets of God.”

    Mitt Romney is a self-described adherent to the tenets and doctrines of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. This includes heeding and following the aforementioned quote. Mr. Romney is as bound to follow the counsel and commands of the hierarchy of the Mormon faith as any adherent. He will receive no special dispensation for his role as executive of our Republic; in fact it will be the other way around: Mormon leaders, many of whom were in the hierarchy prior to 1978, when blacks of African descent were finally allowed full faith in the LDS church, will have full access to and priority influe

  • r-h-a

    Greggory, you are incorrect in your assessment. Show a single instance in the last 20, 30, 40, or more years that your second to last paragraph has any bearing whatsoever. Show any proof whatsoever that George Romney or Mitt Romney or Harry Reid showed or shows any theocratic intent in their public service.

    Your last paragraph is as much if not more of a non sequitur than what you accuse this author of and you know it. Prove me otherwise.

  • haveaheart

    “. . . the license to innovate must be broadly felt . . . the instinct to follow their leaders’ guidance is critical to implement or ‘scale’ successful innovations. Few institutions balance this as well as the Mormon Church.”

    “. . . there is no hierarchy amongst us.”

    These two claims are deeply misleading. Any claim of “balance” by a member of the Mormon church must be viewed with skepticism, because the “higher authorities” work hard to make sure that 1) the Mormon church suffers no public embarrassment and 2) BYU professors (Mormon or otherwise) teach nothing that is considered “non-faith-promoting.”

    In fact, the church is a model of hierarchichal organization. Locally, members are watched by lower-level group leaders who, in turn, report infractions up the ladder. At stake (so to speak) is each member’s “temple recommend,” without which you don’t get to visit the huge and ostentatious temples that dot the country — even if a beloved child is getting married in one of them.

    Well, you say, all of that is internal church business. Agreed. I’m just pointing out the inaccuracy of the “balance” claim.

    But what about the restrictions on teaching at a university that is an accredited institution of higher learning? Professors at Brigham Young University are constrained from reporting research results that don’t fall in line with the church’s teaching. In fact, they’re even constrained from following lines of inquiry that might result in knowledge not acceptable to (or embarrassing to) the General Authorities.

    Unless research turns up evidence that supports the Mormon scriptures, it’s essentially DOA — if the prof wants to keep his/her job.

    So tell me, how is this a “balanced” approach to anything?

    And, by the way, take a look at the author blurb beneath the essay. Notice how the author is careful to keep the church out of the line of fire?

  • mattbowman00

    I am the founder of Hi-Tech High (referenced in this article as an example of Public School Innovation).

    I’d love to connect with anyone interested in learning how we’re successfully driving real innovation within the EXISTING Public K-12 School system. Go to http://www.hi-techhigh.com to learn more.

    And, for the record, I am 100% politically independent – neither Republican nor Democrat.

  • haveaheart

    tommy,

    You offer no proof, either here or in your comments above, that Romney will “represent America evenly.” You simply insist that it is so.

    But, then, that’s how Mormons — and other members of the religious right — are taught their theology. Just take our word for it, don’t ask questions, don’t be troublesome.

    Believe it or not, that just isn’t a persuasive argument.

  • rhackin

    It’s expected that people will try to incite fear of something that they don’t fully understand. The teachings of the LDS church may have helped to shape Romney’s values, principles, and how he treats his fellow man but he’s not a puppet for church leaders.

    There are countless examples of how that argument fails: Alcohol and Coffee, which are prohibited in Mormonism, is served on Jet Blue flights as well in Marriott hotels. Mormon governors have never promoted Mormon beliefs on state residents. Mormon congress members do not attempt to advance Mormon-based policies.

    All of this fear mongering about Mormonism is based in ignorance. I recommend you learn about the LDS church from sources other than Mormon hate websites. What translates from devout church adherence to financial or political success are principles such as leadership, frugality, respect, service, and compassion.

  • Ron33

    To haveheart:

    The members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have a long history of being recipients of not only religious but also financial persecution: mobbed out of three states after effectively creating dynamic local economies (with substantial loss of land and personal property as the warmongers enriched themselves from the despoilment); unfairly and innacurately compelled into the Utah War by a lying political appointee (by the way, not one person was kiiled by the Mormons in this campaign against the federal troops); and being disenfranchised by the Feds/US Supreme Court (with the confiscation of Church properties/businesses/temples[that was the biggie, losing out on temple ordinances]) when the Mormon leaders also went into hiding. So, the very thought that Mormons are not even the least bit concerned with how their thoughts and ideas would affect the economic happiness of others just smacks of ignorance and lunacy when one looks at the historical facts. Because the Mormons still remained patriotic, supported the Federal Government and the Constitution of the United States and forgave the US for what it did to them: “I know your cause is just, but I can do nothing for you.”

    The Mormons understand better than any other religious group — except perhaps the Jews, who I believe are also good role models for attaining financial independence and security — not to tread on the rights of others and of the importance of the separation of church and state in political affairs. Even when the the “Mormon Hierarchy/Theocracy” gets involved in Utah politics, it is usually over moral issues, which the Pope/Catholic Church and other churches have always done in their communities. Just head to the Bible Belt and try buying alcohol at certain times and you will see the influence of other religious groups on public morality as well.

    Also, the Mormons have been very successful in such a short time period (150 years) of developing long- and short-term eco

  • jvmbl

    Amen

  • jvmbl

    Amen

  • jvmbl

    You people are nuts.

  • spamlds

    Fantastic article! Romney’s experience in the Church makes him have a more egalitarian view than many in his tax bracket. The Church is a great “equalizer” in that way. I recall walking through the corridor in the Washington Temple one day and I passed Senator Hatch. There were no reporters, no constituents, no lobbyists. We were just two servants of the Lord doing our devotional duties.

    I have had bishops in the Church who came from every walk of life: insurance salesman, military officer, a dental technician, lawyer, carpenter, etc. When I was in the Air Force in Germany, the nursery was tended to by a full colonel who commanded a nuclear cruise missile wing and a humble sergeant was the bishop.

    On another occasion, the commander of the United States Air Forces in Europe–a four-star general (who became a General Authority later)–graciously responded to the invitation of our bishop–a mere captain–to come and speak to our congregation.

    People outside the Church don’t understand that about Mormons. They are too busy bashing us because of their biases or doctrinal differences to appreciate the culture of the Church. If Romney is a halfway decent Mormon, and I think he is, he’ll be firm, resolute in doing good, yet compassionate and caring about people of all races and socioeconomic classes.

  • principleinvestigator

    While I’m not a big fan of the prosperity gospel, this was a really interesting look at how unique or prominent aspects of the LDS philosophy might inform Mitt Romney’s economic policy in the unlikely event that he becomes president. Another way is how LDS generally try to be prepared for unexpected disruptions in “business as usual”. Things like the Bishops Storehouse, the 1-2 year food storage, and counsel to avoid debt are prudent practices that make it easier to weather the inevitable economic storms. The story of Joseph in Egypt serves as a reminder to prepare during the 7 years of plenty for the 7 lean years, and is one I heard several times from the pulpit in the years leading up to 2007.

  • principleinvestigator

    Mittocracy. Right. Like his first executive order is to institute a 10% flat tax that goes straight to the Mormon church! And then he’ll rewire the Bat-Phone to Salt Lake. Gimme a break. If you don’t like his platform, just say so.

  • ccnl1

    Mormonism will slowly fade from society as will contemporary Christianity and Islam because of the obvious problems with the founders of these religions especially their angelic/satanic hallucinations and related prophecies. “Pretty and ugly wingie or horn blowing thingies” simply do/did not exist.

  • greggorywood

    rhackin assumes that my ‘sources’ of Mormon critique comes from ‘hate’ websites; my source of critique comes from being an adherent Mormon, serving a mission, going to the temple and getting married for ‘eternity': a perfect recipe for atheism.

    There is no comparison between the executive of any state and the executive of our Republic. Of course one could quote or digest the particulars of the white horse prophecy, but most sources are limited and the ‘prophecy’ itself has gathered its own cult of myth. But you still hear the phrase ‘Constitution hanging by a thread’ coming from local elected officials in Utah, to Utah’s senior senator –who adds weight to this scare tactic by adding the superfluous and extraneous ‘literally’. When Mormons use this catch phrase, they show their bias: that they have desperately waited since the time of Joseph Smith to have a Mormon ‘elder’ step in and save the country. Mormon wish thinking does not a cabal make. But it is clear to me that the oaths that an adherent Mormon makes in their temples and the affirmations made in temple recommend interviews –Romney included– are anathema to the oath of the president-elect makes on January 20. I may be living in my own delusions as well, but I’m not willing to vote for anyone who avows to follow any fellow human that claims direct communication with god. Not in this secular Republic.