Marilyn Writes

Marilyn MacGruder Barnewall began her career as a journalist with the Wyoming Eagle in Cheyenne. During her 20 year banking career, she wrote extensively for The American Banker, Bank Marketing Magazine, Trust Marketing Magazine, and other major industry publications. The American Bankers Association (ABA) published Barnewall’s Profitable Private Banking: the Complete Blueprint, in 1987. She taught private banking at Colorado University for the ABA and trained private bankers in Singapore.

Monday, March 07, 2011

Beyond the Road Less Traveled

By Marilyn M. Barnewall
March 6, 2011

In 1978, M. Scott Peck’s book, The Road Less Traveled, led readers to the realization that delaying gratification – planning for pain to precede pleasure – helped create decent human beings. It was, perhaps, the only “decent way to live,” he said.

The Road Less Traveled stayed on the New York Times Best Seller list for 10 years… not 10 weeks or 10 months, but 10 years! If that does not speak of the hunger people have for understanding and the need to seek truth, I don’t know what does.

To evaluate the behavior of others, we must see beyond the obvious to the subtle, beyond what people say to what they do. That’s one of my sayings… I like to write sayings. It forces me to put my thoughts into short, understandable sentences.

One of Scott Peck’s other books is People of the Lie, (Simon and Schuster, 1983). The Road Less Traveled is a nice book. People of the Lie is not a nice book.

Who are people of the lie? If I had to describe them in a way other than Peck did, I would say, they are friendly sociopaths. They are people who lie to themselves about their lives, their faith, their beliefs, their achievements, their children, their parenting skills… just about anything significant. They rationalize ongoing bad results by convincing themselves their motives are pure. In case you don’t recognize this behavior, it is the basis for collectivism (or, as it is better known, communism and socialism) – the collective. Or, that sentence we so often hear, “it serves the greater good.” They live in dark places where the Light of Truth has never eased the night of their existence. They honestly do not recognize their rationalizations as lies. They live in synthetic, unreal worlds.

In People of the Lie, Peck defines evil as “malignant energy.” It is such a creatively honest definition of the word. Evil is a growing, negative, energy force... like cancer. And, like cancer, it is just as life-threatening. At this very moment, the life of America as a nation is threatened by People of the Lie.

To study anything, someone must make judgments and determine if an item fits the parameters of the research. We often hear that we should not judge others. Perhaps that’s why no one has ever done a scientific study of evil. Peck points out that “Christ told us ‘judge not lest ye be judged’.” When people make that comment, they take what Jesus really said out of context. It is the first defense people use against those with a Christian conscience. They quote the Bible with just a bit of a twist… from their perspective they simplify it (at least that’s what they say they do). Have you noticed how easily they do the same thing to our Constitution?

Christ went on to say: “Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam from thine own eyes; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote from thy brother’s eye.” In other words, we are to judge, but before we do so we are to honestly look within ourselves for the truth and at our own faults. We are to empty ourselves of our own prejudices to judge carefully.

It is fairly easy to look at abortion and determine it is evil… it involves human life and death. It is far more difficult to look at illegals pouring across our borders and see it for the evil it is. People seldom focus on a topic long enough to connect the dots between the number of Americans killed or raped by illegal aliens. They don’t connect the dots with our open border and the increased drug culture… a form of living torture that makes water boarding look like child’s play. Yes, Charlie Sheen really believes all of those grandiose things he says about himself. He lives in darkness but thinks he is the only one living in the light. People don’t connect the increased cost of hospital and medical care with the number of illegals who use emergency rooms like primary care physicians… or the number of people who may have died because doctors must stitch up a gang-related knife wound before getting to an elderly person’s heart attack.

The need to have government take care of you from cradle to grave is a disease that is made up of 1/3 inadequacy complex, 1/3 over-compensating ego for the inadequacy, with both leading to a sick need for the remaining 1/3: Power to fend off monsters under the bed.

M. Scott Peck is a psychiatrist – not my favorite professionals. I believe one learns nothing about positives by studying negatives (which is what most “mental health” experts do). In other words, I believe studying the mentally ill teaches us nothing about the mentally healthy. We learn about the mentally healthy by studying mentally healthy people! No one does that. I’m not sure we can even agree on who is mentally healthy, these days.

All of this leads to a question. It’s an important question.

How do those of us who choose to live our lives seeking the truth (rather than feel good answers to daily challenges) solve the problems created by those who prefer living around rather than through life? How do we solve the Charlie Sheen problem of those who live in synthetic worlds? Sheen’s behavior, at least, is caused by drugs… a form of mental illness, no doubt. Liberal and progressive behavior has no such excuse.

Yet, those who are Remnants are given the responsibility by God to try and save as many of the others as possible. It isn’t done by ignoring them – which conservatives have done the past 50 years (if you define the primary problem Tea Party Groups face, that’s it). If we hadn’t ignored them, they wouldn’t have gotten so much power.

We won’t solve the problems by condemning them. It’s our job to lift them up… make them better. Condemnation makes no one better. Judging someone and condemning them are two different things. Education is a possible solution… until one looks at teachers in Wisconsin getting their “Mary’s sick and can’t work” doctor excuses so they can protest having to pay their own way in life and relieve the burdens of middle class taxpayers who support their inability to teach anyone anything. If that weren’t a true statement, Wisconsin schools wouldn’t be rated 44th in the country.

We need to stop focusing on people and look instead at problem resolution. I would suggest that a lot of people focus on issues, but have no clue as to the base problem that needs to be solved. So priority #1 is to clearly define the problems.

In The Road Less Traveled and Beyond, Scott Peck defines the word “Kenosis.” The goal of the kenotic process is that of an empty vessel. His theory suggests the best way to define America’s problems is to empty ourselves of our preconceived notions of what this nation really is… to become Born Again Americans. To do that requires us to empty ourselves of our beliefs and visit the halls of history to get the facts.

What does the Constitution say? What does the Bill of Rights say? What do the words used in each document mean? It’s clear they gave us a Republic, not a Democracy. What’s the difference between the two? Do you know? If not, why not? Are you insulted every time someone calls America a ‘great democracy’? I am.

It’s past time for us to answer these questions. It’s past time to take satisfaction because we’re informed about our problems. It’s time to do something about them. It must be peaceful, lawful, and non-violent. It must be an exercise in American unity!

Here are four things, which, if implemented, would, I believe, initiate the solutions we need:

1. Implement State Banks. This removes the power base of the Federal Reserve which, it appears, is behind much of the evil in America, from wars to Wall Street. As long as states are tied to the federal financial system, they cannot declare sovereignty or create their own currency. They can legislate their right to do both, but cannot implement such legislation without the distribution provided by State Banks (not to be confused with state-chartered banks). Be sure any currency created is backed by a commodity of value and is not a fiat currency (with nothing supporting it but taxation of the people to repay government debt).

2. Remove at the ballot box Federal Statute Rule 6 (g), which puts the Grand Jury system in the hands of government. It is the intended fourth leg of government – the leg that gives Americans the right to call Grand Juries and present evidence without a judge or prosecutor controlling what is presented. If the people could call Grand Juries (as intended), elected officials would tread much more carefully before violating their Oath of Office. Legislators forced Rule 6 (g) on us. Put it on the garbage heap of history.

3. Make English the official language of your State. Missouri did. They have no illegal alien problem… no public assistance forms are printed in Spanish.

4. Become actively involved in candidate selection. Voting is important – provided the candidates for office are honest and informed. If they are committed to Party rather than People, it’s an exercise in destroying America.

These solutions don’t require huge demonstrations and protests. They require thoughtful groups of people who get together, study problems (rather than argue about issues), and get petitions that can change the balance of power signed and on the ballot.

We need to replace legislators who support Green jobs, open borders, Agenda 21’s sustainable development projects, and Wall Street brokerage houses. We can waste energy fighting anti-American issues… or, replace the people who support them with those who do not.

© 2011 Marilyn M. Barnewall - All Rights Reserved


Marilyn MacGruder Barnewall began her career in 1956 as a journalist with the Wyoming Eagle in Cheyenne. During her 20 years (plus) as a banker and bank consultant, she wrote extensively for The American Banker, Bank Marketing Magazine, Trust Marketing Magazine, was U.S. Consulting Editor for Private Banker International (London/Dublin), and other major banking industry publications. She has written seven non-fiction books about banking and taught private banking at Colorado University for the American Bankers Association. She has authored seven banking books, one dog book, and two works of fiction (about banking, of course). She has served on numerous Boards in her community.

Barnewall is the former editor of The National Peace Officer Magazine and as a journalist has written guest editorials for the Denver Post, Rocky Mountain News and Newsweek, among others. On the Internet, she has written for News With Views, World Net Daily, Canada Free Press, Christian Business Daily, Business Reform, and others. She has been quoted in Time, Forbes, Wall Street Journal and other national and international publications. She can be found in Who's Who in America (2005-10), Who's Who of American Women (2006-10), Who's Who in Finance and Business (2006-10), and Who's Who in the World (2008). Web site: E-Mail: