The Prince William-Manassas Family Alliance (See below for latest blog posts.)

Supporting family values in Prince William County, Manassas, and Manassas Park

Welcome to the website of the Prince William and Manassas Family Alliance (PWMFA). We are a grassroots organization of citizens of Prince William County and the independent cities of Manassas and Manassas Park, Virginia, dedicated to supporting and promoting the values inherent in the concept of family. Learn more about us.

Where they stand

  • The principal goal of the Family Alliance is to help Prince William County, Manassas, and Manassas Park voters learn more about candidates seeking to represent them in public office. Our focus is especially directed at the County and City school boards, the Board of County Supervisors and Manassas and Manassas Park City Councils. We also concentrate on State legislative candidates with the aim of informing the voting public on where candidates stand regarding key issues affecting the family.

    Here are some of the projects we are currently undertaking:

    • We’re soliciting the positions of candidates seeking local public offices in both the General and Primary elections in the 2019 election cycle.
    • We maintain an active website (www.familyallianceonline.org) to draw attention to school issues, elections and the need for Christian leadership on issues affecting the family.
    • We seek to build a network of church contacts throughout Prince William and the two cities (Manassas and Manassas Park) with the aim of promoting the institution of the family and an educated electorate.
    • We hold candidate forums/interviews  to give pastors and candidates an opportunity to explore the views of candidates or potential candidates.

Some of our Achievements

  • Led the successful campaign for the Marriage Amendment in 2006, carrying Prince William County and Manassas by a larger margin than statewide.
  • Led the successful fight against off-track betting in Manassas Park in 2004.
  • Distributed Voter Guides to Prince William County churches area.
  • Successfully promoted internet filtering in public libraries and abstinence-based family life education.

Affect Public Policy – Help Us Protect our Community

Support our efforts! Visit our “Get Involved” section to join the PWMFA or to make an “online” contribution.

This page last updated on September 2, 2018.
Posted in Citizen Responsibilities

ELECTION NEWS: MAY 16, 2019

At this point it is worth checking into The Virginia Public Access Project (vpap.org). Want to know who is backing a candidate? The Virginia Public Access Project provides information on who is donating money to candidates.

New Regional Park Opens with Family Friendly Event on June 1 (pwcgov.org): The incumbents on the Prince William Board of Supervisors will probably enjoy making this announcement.

Kenny Allen Boddye, running for Member Board of Supervisors Occoquan District is both posting at Blue Virginia is endorsed by that blog. (see Boddye – search results)

Here are some of the election stories out there.

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TRADE: WAR OR SURRENDER?

Because it gets into the nuts and bolts, Bacon’s Rebellion is not easy reading, but it does provide the satisfaction of learning something. Therefore, I visit from time to time.

“A Dozen Pockets of Extreme and Growing Risk” is one of several recent posts that focuses on the fragility of the economy. Naturally our trade war with China came up. So I left this comment.

The problem with any decision is that we have to evaluate the tradeoffs. Overall, when it comes to trade, free trade delivers the optimum tradeoffs. One-sided free trade, however, is not free trade. One-sided free trade allows one nation to manipulate the other nation’s economy.

Conservatives advocate free trade. We have become so committed to the idea that won’t even retaliate when another nation imposes tarrifs on our products and subsidizes its own. That’s tantamount to abandoning our most valuable industries to the tender mercies of foreign powers. The politicians who do that are either corrupt or foolish.

We want free trade? Then we have fight for it. Freedom is not free. (from here)

Generally, this blog doesn’t get economic issues, but a trade war of this magnitude is an extremely risky undertaking. Trade wars threaten the jobs families need to do all the things families do, and trade wars can lead to military conflict. So we have a conundrum. How do we defend our economic interests without imposing tariffs and provoking the Chinese?

Do we have a good alternative? Can we continue to ignore the problem? Doesn’t putting off the problem allow the Chinese to put us in a weaker position?

So has President Donald Trump chosen the best course of action? Let’s hope that he has. In addition, give our president credit for proper preparation. What has he done?

  • He has built up our military strength. Since trade wars have history of assuming military dimensions, this is an especially wise move.
  • He has strengthened our economy by getting rid of unneeded regulations and by lowering taxes.
  • He has assisted U.S. industries under assault by Chinese tariffs.
  • He has left the Chinese government an honorable out. He has proposed that we each play by the same rules.

How will this trade war turn out? We cannot foresee the future, but let’s pray the leaders of China will see the wisdom in negotiating honorably.

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WHAT IS DRIVING THE MORAL DEGENERATION OF OUR ONCE CHRISTIAN SOCIETY?


Is our society becoming degenerate without a fight? No. Some are trying to pull us with them into the Pit, into Hell, but others are pulling back, trying to pull their family, their friends, their neighbors, and themselves back from the brink.

Sometimes we act. Sometimes we see an example of moral degeneration so flagrant — so obviously evil — some of us become appalled enough to drop what we are doing and stand against it. Some of us still see the horror in sin. Some strive against the pull of the unrepentant.

Such was the case in Philadelphia recently. Some people took a stand against abortion. What precipitated their resistance? A local CBS affiliate provided this article, VIDEO: Legislator Brian Sims Films Himself Berating Female Abortion Protester In Philadelphia (philadelphia.cbslocal.com). Here is how the article starts.

PHILADELPHIA (AP) – A Democratic Pennsylvania state lawmaker is drawing criticism for recording himself berating a woman demonstrator at length outside an abortion clinic in Philadelphia, calling her an “old white lady” and her protest “grotesque.” State Rep. Brian Sims posted an eight-minute-plus video on social media that showed him peppering the woman with questions and criticism. (continued here)

The video is oddly surreal. Here we have a big, strong, intelligent, supposedly good man heckling a woman, berating her, for standing outside an abortion clinic and quietly praying with her rosary. What made Sims think that that video would make him look good? But it gets worse. Sims posted a video of himself heckling teenagers and threatening to doxx them, My teen girls were filmed, harassed by a lawmaker for praying outside Planned Parenthood (usatoday.com).

Whenever Sims thought he was doing backfired. Instead of making himself look good, he just engendered greater protests against his favorite abortion clinic.

What makes people like Sims act that way? Why would anyone so vociferously defend an abortion clinic, a place where doctors murder the unborn? Sims spoke of pseudo Christians. Is Sims a Christian? Has he read the Bible? Does he know what the Bible says?

Whatever Sims believes it is apparent that many of us do not read the Bible and believe what it says. We speak of Jesus. We applaud His message of love, but we do not give the book Jesus so often quoted much attention. Therefore, we do not know enough to take passages like this one seriously, much less obey it.

Proverbs 3:5-6 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Trust in the Lord with all your heart
And do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge Him,
And He will make your paths straight.

What does that passage mean? What does it mean to lean not on your own understanding (Proverbs 3:5-6)? (gotquestions.org) provides a good commentary. In its explanation, that commentary references this proverb.

Proverbs 16:25 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

25 There is a way which seems right to a man,
But its end is the way of death.

The way of death? The way to Hell? Even though the way seems right? Is this why the Bible we must trust in the Lord? We don’t know how to discern the way of life from the way of death?

Check out Psalm 23. Here the Bible speaks of God as our Shepherd and of us as His sheep. Sheep are dumb. How dumb are sheep? The Book of Judges ends with this verse.

Judges 21:25 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

25 In those days there was no king in Israel; everyone did what was right in his own eyes.

Because everyone did what was right in his own eyes, not God’s eyes, the Book of Judges is often horrifying. We wonder! How could they have done that? The answer is that instead of trusting God’s wisdom they trusted their own.

Love by itself is not enough. We must trust in the wisdom of God. When we don’t trust God and believe that what He calls sin is evil, we fail to obey Him. When we don’t abhor sin and hate sin as God hates sin, then we lack the wisdom to discern good from evil, to choose between God and Satan, to understand what it means to love someone other than our self.

James 4:7 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.

Posted in Citizen Responsibilities, Pro Life | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

AN EXAMPLE OF THE MISUSE BUSINESS PERFORMANCE METRICS

What is a business performance metric? Well, here is the definition Google put at the top of its list.

Business metrics, also called KPIs (key performance indicators) display a measurable value that shows the progress of a company’s business goals. They’re usually tracked on a KPI dashboard. Business metrics indicate whether a company has achieved its goals in a planned time frame. (from 12 Business Metrics That Every Company Should Know (scoro.com))

There are plenty of people who make a good living devising and implementing business metrics. When implemented properly, business metrics give a business a competitive advantage and make it more profitable. However, when implemented improperly, they are just a waste of time and money. So it pays to hire a business process engineer who knows what he is doing.

As it happens, ordinary folks like us use and often misapply business metrics all the time. Here is one example, actually a serious one, Fairfax County Public Schools: Excellence for a Few (thebullelephant.com). Here is how the post starts.

Are Fairfax County Public Schools excellent?  Its 213-page FY2020 Proposed Budget devotes less than one page to student achievement. There it states that the FCPS 2018 average SAT score of 1212 is higher than the average scores for neighboring school districts — Arlington County (1191), Loudoun County (1184), and Montgomery County (1167). However, only 60% of FCPS seniors took the SAT. Arlington, Loudoun, and Montgomery tested 68%, 76%, and 66% of seniors. When both the average score and the percent tested are considered, Loudoun is first.

FCPS also claims excellence because its average SAT score is higher than the national average of 1068 and the Virginia average of 1117. (See table.)  However, is above average also excellent, especially when the maximum score is 1600? (continued here)

Educators and the news media like to use SAT scores as a “business” performance metric. When the students at a school have good SAT scores, I suppose that seems like a good choice for a business metric, but is it?

I intended to leave the following comment on that post about the FCPS’ SAT scores, but for some reason it ended up in the spam bucket. So here it is.

Is FCPS doing a good job? That is, is the FCPS getting the best bang for the buck? That’s debatable? You have to prove they are not doing a good job?

Why do you have to bother reviewing SAT scores? It just gets you in the weeds. When we rate the public school system, we rate something rather nebulous. What metric should we use? Don’t you know that metrics have limited value? When we educate children, we are not rating the production of widgets coming off an assembly line. Each child is different. Each child has different capacities and differing needs and wants.

Conventional wisdom suggests SAT scores are a good choice for rating schools, but why would they be? Most children either don’t go to college or should not be bothered with college, but that is what the SAT is, a college entrance exam. At best the SAT measures whether children learned what the people who wrote the SAT exams think important for college. Are they right? Why should we trust their judgement? Because lots of college admissions departments use the SAT as a crutch?

Is the uniformity of SAT scores across Fairfax County important? Is it reasonable to expect all the high schools in Fairfax County to be equally effective with respect to the SAT? Since Thomas Jefferson High School is a magnet school, we would consider it an absurd failure if it did not have high SAT scores. Is the population of Fairfax County homogeneously distributed? No. Therefore, it is not reasonable to expect all the schools in Fairfax County to have the same average SAT score. Like it or not, the student population varies too much.

What is a good education? Doesn’t that depend upon the customer? Why should everyone expect the same thing from an education?

In a free country, the customer is king. Is FCPS giving its customers the education they need and want? Why should the people who run the FCPS provide what their customers want? We have a government-run education system. FCPS gets “their money” from politicians, and the politicians get their money from the taxpayers, and the taxpayers don’t have much choice.

Because the customer is not king, FCPS is broken. Its concept of operations is defective. Does every parent want their children to learn the same things? Does every student want to be the same as all the other students? Of course not! Then why not let customers decide which schools are best? Why don’t you skip this nonsense and just argue for school choice?

By what right does our government pressure parents to send their children to the monopolistic public school system? Because of the quality? We have to prove that government-run anything doesn’t work well? Of course not. In a free country we put the government in charge ONLY when nothing else will work, and it must work. That’s why we have a government-run military, police force, court system, and so forth.

The problem with government-run anything is obvious. When politicians can just take our money — tax us — they have this damnable tendency to buy what they want, not what we want.

Don’t we know there is no good reason for the government to run our schools as a monopoly? Then the issue isn’t quality. The issue is: why are we letting our leaders get away with this ridiculous nonsense?

Ridiculous nonsense? I suppose that seems unduly harsh. Doesn’t everyone use SAT scores to rate the schools? But why? Do we use a single metric to rate cars? Houses? Clothing? No? Why not?

In a competitive market, suppliers compete to provide the type of products their customers want. Therefore, a free market provides diverse choices. Some people want 18-wheelers. Others want tiny, inexpensive gas sippers. And a free market provides such choices.

If we were shopping for a vehicle, would we use a single metric to compare an 18-wheeler with a subcompact, any metrics at all? No. A single metric only makes sense when the range of choices is severely limited.

When we shop for a vehicle in the private market, we directly compare our needs and wants, our own metrics, with what the market provides (We even look at 18-wheelers if we want a subcompact.). Unfortunately, government-run monopolies don’t provide a true choice. Government-run schools differ, but their teaching goals and philosophies vary only a little bit. The primary differences between schools depend upon the competence of the state and local bureaucrats and the ability of the local communities to get the best teachers, curriculum and facilities for their children. Therefore, since the teaching goals and philosophies differ so little, we use average SAT scores to measure the relative success of government-run schools in achieving their own goals.

Note the expression, achieving their own goals. High SAT scores is the goal politicians and the education bureaucracy have set for themselves. If our schools competed in a private market, including our colleges and universities, would your first priority, your be-all and end-all, be high SAT scores? How do you define success for your child? Is it the same way a politician-run, secularized education system does?

Posted in culture, School Choice | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

HATRED BLINDS US

I heard about the bullying/harassment of visitors from North Korea on WMAL this morning. I just hope the bullies now realize just how much they embarrassed themselves and their country.

Here is the story in The Daily Caller, NORTH KOREAN DEFECTORS RESPOND TO ANTI-TRUMP RAPPER AFTER HE HARASSED THEM. They have a video of the incident. They weave it into an interview of Wendy Wright, President of Christian Freedom International.

Why the interview of Wright? Two guys decided to bully some people who had escaped North Korea, a truly brutal, Stalinist, totalitarian regime. Unaware of the prickly sensitivities of some people in our nation’s capital, visitors from Korea had the “audacity” to wear MAGA hats.

PJ Media also carries the story, It Gets Worse: Asians Harassed in D.C. for Wearing MAGA Hats Were North Korean Defectors. Their story, which provides a slight different slant, posts the bare bones version of the bullying/harassment video.

Are you a friend or an acquaintance of the bullies? Please do those fellows a favor. Please suggest they man-up and publicly apologize for their behavior. That includes suggesting they buy replacements for the hats they damaged. That includes sending those new MAGA hats to the visitors they self-righteously bullied. Undoubtedly, the Christian Freedom International has a mailing address, and they will be happy to forward the hats to our visitors. These North Koreans, good Christians who have escaped the wrath of truly vile bullies, will gratefully accept their apologies and thank the Lord for the newfound wisdom shown by those who once attacked them.

If the bullies are reluctant or afraid, please ask them this question. Instead of trying to discern the hearts of those wearing symbols we detest, should we not consider our own hearts first? Before we judge others, don’t we need to judge ourselves first?

Who am I? Am I one the Lord hates because I hate wrongfully?

Proverbs 6:12-19 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

12 A worthless person, a wicked man,
Is the one who walks with a perverse mouth,
13 Who winks with his eyes, who [a]signals with his feet,
Who [b]points with his fingers;
14 Who with perversity in his heart continually devises evil,
Who [c]spreads strife.
15 Therefore his calamity will come suddenly;
Instantly he will be broken and there will be no healing.

16 There are six things which the Lord hates,
Yes, seven which are an abomination [d]to Him:
17 Haughty eyes, a lying tongue,
And hands that shed innocent blood,
18 A heart that devises wicked plans,
Feet that run rapidly to evil,
19 A false witness who utters lies,
And one who [e]spreads strife among brothers.

 

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