- The Washington Times - Thursday, November 16, 2000

VeggieTale values

"Bitten by the animation bug as a young boy, Phil [Vischer] attended St. Paul Bible College, with the intent of getting a Bible degree before heading west for film school. But Phil's entrepreneurial instinct led him instead to Chicago where he found himself working in advertising in the growing field of computer animation. Uninspired by his work on advertising logos, and determined to put his media talents to work for a higher purpose, Phil began sketching out his own characters and stories on the side. Recruiting college friend and production colleague Mike Nawrocki, the two set up shop in 1993, eventually bringing to life the stars of the video series, VeggieTales… .

"In less than seven years, Big Idea Productions has sold more than 20 million videos and grown from three to nearly 200 employees… . So how does the top tomato handle this overwhelming success? 'The success has reinforced our resolve to stick to our values and move forward with our mission,' Phil says."

Sharon Cindrich, writing on "A Parent's Dream Come True," in the Fall issue of Becoming Family

'God's loving design'

"We believe that marriage is a holy union of one man and one woman in which they commit, with God's help, to build a loving, life-giving, faithful relationship that will last for a lifetime. God has established the married state, in the order of creation and redemption, for spouses to grow in love of one another and for the procreation, nurture, formation, and education of children… .

"We believe that when a marriage is true to God's loving design it brings spiritual, physical, emotional, economic, and social benefits not only to a couple and family but also to the Church and to the wider culture… .

"Our nation is threatened by a high divorce rate, a rise in cohabitation, a rise in non-marital births, a decline in the marriage rate, and a diminishing interest in and readiness for marrying, especially among young people. The documented adverse impact of these trends on children, adults and society is alarming."

from "A Christian Declaration on Marriage," released Tuesday by the National Conference of Catholic Bishops, the National Association of Evangelicals, the Southern Baptist Convention and the Churches of Christ, USA

Calhoun's worst fears

"The county-by-county electoral map published by USA Today showing that George W. Bush carried 2,434 counties covering 2.4 million square miles, compared to Al Gore's 677 counties covering about a half million square miles, suggests that the worst fears of one of America's greatest statesmen and political philosophers, John C. Calhoun, may have finally come true… .

"Calhoun hailed the right of suffrage as 'the indispensable and primary principle in the foundation of a constitutional government,' but warned that … the public must be sufficiently enlightened to understand their own rights under the Constitution and 'the interests of the community,' and 'to appreciate the motives and conduct of those appointed to make and execute the laws.' On these grounds the American public is failing miserably… .

"Even worse, Calhoun wrote, is the tendency of democratic governments to divide the population into two groups: taxpayers and tax consumers, with the latter group employing the apparatus of the state to plunder the former group… .

"This is exactly what the USA Today county-by-county electoral map, and other post-election data, show… .

"Government has grown so unimpeded that the U.S. is on the precipice of being divided almost equally between the taxpaying and tax-consuming classes. As Calhoun warned, this could lead to 'one class or portion of the community [being] elevated to wealth and power, and the other depressed to abject poverty and dependence, simply by the fiscal action of the government.' "

Thomas DiLorenzo, writing on "Calhoun Foresaw This," posted Monday on the Ludwig von Mises Institute Web site at www.mises.org

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