Stan Crader

Author & Lecturer on Writing About Rural America

The Debt Threat & Solution

I’ve been boiling maple sap all night. My mind works overtime while tending vats of boiling sap, which is akin to boiling water. One has plenty of time to think while watching water boil for twenty-four hours straight.

The second biggest threat to America is the inability of our government to curb spending. Too often, conversations about deficit spending invariably end up in a blame game. Each President and Congress blames the previous. This isn’t new and it’s unproductive. What is new is the nearness of the proverbial precipice about which America is precariously close. Now there’s a string… Continue reading

Saul Alinsky – Rules for Radicals

This is too important to get wrong.

There’s an email being circulated that aligns President Obama’s agenda with quotes from Saul Alinsky. This email is fraught with errors and weakens the conservative argument, particularly when debating an informed liberal. While President Obama occasionally uses phraseology identical to that of Saul Alinsky, and the President’s tactics seem to align with those taught by Alinsky in his book Rules for Radicals, President Obama is very careful not to openly credit Alinsky.

The following is a link to an on-line copy of Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals. It’s an interesting book that… Continue reading

It’s Not Always What You Think


A couple of weeks ago I bought a black suit—it was the first suit I’d purchased in maybe two decades.  I also bought a new white shirt, tie, and dress socks but stopped short of new shoes. I’m funny about shoes, one of those rare people that still get them resoled. The new suit, shirt, tie, and socks were for a special event to which Debbie and I had been invited—or so I thought.

We’d been invited to attend the New York Stock Exchange Congressional Medal of Honor Gala. It would be our first trip to New York.… Continue reading

Deficit to Surplus

Don’t you hate it when someone brags about having read an entire book the night before? How could anyone read an entire book in one night, you wonder, or at least I do. Books are to be enjoyed, not gobbled up like last year’s Halloween candy. Fast reading is not a sign of intelligence, or so I say.

Well, here goes. “I read the book From Deficit to Surplus last night. And I had lunch with the author today. “Wow,” you say, or at least I hope you did. More than likely you’re gagging, or worse yet, have exited from… Continue reading

Death of Democracy

On any given day I’ll hear the following two statements.  “There’s no difference between a Democrat or a Republican congressman—that’s why I don’t vote.” And, “Never before has our government been so divided and the two parties so far apart in their views.” Which is it?

Democrats essentially believe that the government is the solution and that bigger government is better. And when Democrats are in control, the government expands and regulates more and more.

Republicans claim that smaller government is better. But during the few years when the Republicans controlled both houses of the 104th congress, government… Continue reading

Phil Phil Phil – Think Think Think

Think is also an acronym. Before speaking one should think, is it Truthful, Helpful, Inspiring, Necessary, Kind.

Friedrich von Hayek, in is his address to the founding members of the Mont Pelerin Society had a Phil moment. Or maybe it’s more chronologically correct to say that Phil had a Fred moment. Either way, a Biblical message that was truthful and necessary was said. And in both cases helpful to those who allowed themselves to be inspired rather than offended.

Friedrich von Hayek essentially paraphrased Isaiah 1:1-20 were God instructs Isaiah the prophet regarding his call to action and the consequences.… Continue reading

Jesus Is Problematic

St. Louis Cardinal Glennon Children’s Charity Christmas television commercial was initially rejected by ESPN because it mentioned the birth of Jesus Christ. After a justified public outcry, ESPN did a 180 and agreed to run the spot in its original form. ESPN told Cardinal Glennon representatives that the use of Jesus and God in the spot was problematic. There has been little coverage of this controversy on mainstream media. Google “ESPN Jesus is problematic,” and check it out for yourself.

The TV spot makes an appeal for letters to be sent to children suffering during this Christmas season. And part… Continue reading

Beyond Obamacare


It’s so easy to get distracted, which is what most people are with regards to healthcare. Healthcare is a frequently discussed subject these days but few are discussing the issues that really matter. Too many are distracted by the website fiasco and not focusing on the most important healthcare challenges, which by the way, isn’t Obamacare.

Healthcare policy is shaped by politics and religion—two potentially divisive drivers. Politicians have used moral obligation, the roots of which lie in religion, to further healthcare initiatives, which stand to advance their political careers. The root of the reason for their biases can… Continue reading

Gettysburg Address

The following is not mine. It’s an article written by a friend–Dr. Daniel Dreisbach. It’s brilliant.

It’s also available at

The Sacred Sounds of Gettysburg

On the afternoon of November 19, 1863, President Abraham Lincoln delivered a brief address at the dedication of a national cemetery on Gettysburg’s battlefield. The solemn ceremony took place four and a half months after Union forces turned back the army of the Confederate States on July 1-3 in the bloodiest engagement of the Civil War. The battle claimed the lives of nearly eight thousand soldiers. Lincoln’s carefully crafted address was barely 272 words… Continue reading

Are you an Anthropomorphist?


I sat down at my desk with the intention of adding a few words to my next novel, Approach The Bench. And then I saw a note to myself that I need to finish the family Christmas letter. While in the process of closing the file to my book and looking through my documents folder for the unfinished Christmas letter my eyes locked onto a book lying next to the keyboard. A.W. Tozer’s words were calling.

“What comes to mind when we think about God is the most important thing about us,” author A.W. Tozer once wrote. “The… Continue reading

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