My family and I sat in on a Bible Study at Holy Family Church in Deming, New Mexico. The topic was the “Final Judgement.” It was pointed out that there was numerous references to a “Final Judgement” in the Bible, and that after death we are heading in one of two directions: Heaven or Hell. To stay the course toward Heaven , the instructor said people must, basically: “follow the 10 Commandments.” I shared that we in America sometimes have only a cursory understanding of these. That is for instance, one of the Commandments says: “Thou Shalt Not Kill.” And most Americans will say: “Well, I haven’t done that.” However, what if I’m an American driving a $20,000 car, knowing full well thousands of children are starving to death (or dying for lack of medicine, shelter…) in the Third World every day. Because I’m not willing to sacrifice and ride in the old used Volkswagon (or even on a bus, bicycle…), have I, in a very real sense, contributed to the deaths [read: killing by omission] of some of these Third World children? I believe God, who has anything but a ‘cursory’ understanding of the Commandments, might ask about this during the Final Judgement… In Deming, New Mexico, I also interviewed Gerry and Jean Leanhardt. They are the founders of the Agape Community here, an Intentional Catholic Community where the members live together in a cluster of houses and share a “common purse.” Gerry said any community worth it’s “spiritual salt” is engaged in outreach. And Agape has developed a thrift store filled with clothes and appliances for low income people on the border here. In addition, they’ve bought a small motel next door, rennovated it, and offer shelter for men, women and families trying to get on their feet. And they have been involved in numerous other outreaches. Gerry, Jean and their children came to Deming some 30 years ago from Portland, Oregon. Gerry was an accomplished, professional musician and owned a group of beauty salons. He said he was doing quite well when he felt the call to sell everything and help develop a community in Oregon. After several years of living in community and helping disadvantaged teens, the community felt spiritually led to move to Deming. Gerry said while “the world” would look at his community endeavors as not all that successful (in relationship to chasing the American Dream), he said he takes great solace in knowing he’s using his talents to their utmost for God now. What’s more, he said raising his children in community was a tremendous blessing. And he said it shows in the spirituality they developed, their heightenned social justice orientation, and the interpersonal skills they developed at doing indepth relationship… We then headed west to Benson, Arizona where I was interviewed by reporter Thelma Grimes of the San Pedro Valley News-Sun. She asked if we’d been “successful.” As an example, I said several years ago I passionately talked to a youth group in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma about the abject poverty we saw on Native American Reservations we’d researched. Shortly after, I got an e-mail from the youth group leader saying based on the talk, the youth were planning a mission trip to do volunteer work at one of the poorest Reservations in New Mexico. I said to Ms. Grimes that while that wouldn’t show up on an “exit poll,” we’re heartenned by that type of response to the campaign. And who knows how many other youth groups will be inspired by what the Oklahoma City youth group did… Note: I told the News-Sun’s Ms. Grimes that while we didn’t pander to anyone, I wanted the people of southern Arizona to know that as soon as we get to D.C. we’re going to change the National Symbol “…from an eagle to — a roadrunner.” [These roadrunners are all over down here!] My son Joseph just got a postcard for a friend that featured the roadrunner bird. It notes the roadrunner is found throughout the Mojave, Sonaran, and Chilhuahuan deserts of the Southwestern United States. They are one of the few animals that prey upon rattlesnakes and can reach speeds of up to 17 mph. The postcard also said: “The Roadrunner is a member of the Cuckoo Family…” My wife Liz mentioned (more than once) that that might be why I’m particularly attracted to these birds.

About Joe Schriner

Common man, Common sense, Uncommon solutions. "In an era when presidential campaigns run on multi-million dollar war chests, lavish fundraising dinners and high gloss television ads, Joe Schriner is a different breed of candidate." - The Herald, Monterey, California. Joe at a glance... Age: 56. Family: Husband of 17 years, and father. Faith: Catholic. Home state: Ohio. Graduate of Bowling Green State University. Journalist and author. Also a former addictions counselor, with an emphasis on family systems. Independent presidential candidate in four successive election cycles. On the road campaigning extensively. In between campaign tours, now does part-time house painting and light handyman work to make ends meet (aka: Joe the painter). Volunteer work with: Brown County (OH) Board of Mental Health; Catholic Worker outreach to the poor in the inner city of Cleveland; We Are the Uninsured Healthcare Movement in Ohio. Inner city youth league baseball and soccer coach (won some, lost some). Hobbies: Trying to beat his wife at "Scrabble," weight lifting, swimming, photography, sandlot baseball, soccer, football and basketball with his children. In Joe's words... I'm, for the most part, your average Midwesterner, I told the Duluth (MN) News. I jog in a pair of gray sweats. My favorite spots to eat are your basic diners. Whats more, I cut my own lawn. Oh, and Im running for president. I told the Lancaster (OH) Eagle Gazette that the reason I am running for president is that I am a concerned parent. That is, I don't want to leave a world of climate change, war, abortion, rural and inner city poverty, violent streets, nuclear proliferation, astronomical national debt, little social security, dwindling access to healthcare to our children. What sane parent would? Now, I didn't go to Harvard, Yale, or even Rutgers for that matter. I went to Bowling Green State University where I majored in journalism. I then worked for a couple intermediate-sized Ohio newspapers. I later became an addictions counselor. And in 1990, as a lead up to the presidential run, I took my journalism skills on the road to look for common sense solutions to the societal problems I outlined above. And in some tremendously extensive, cross-country research (that has continued during my years of campaigning), I've found those solutions.        Getting policies enacted... Amidst abject poverty on the Southside of Chicago, I learned how to end homelessness. In Atwood, Kansas (pop. 1,500), I learned how to balance the National Budget. In Grand Junction, Colorado, I learned how to get quality healthcare for all. In High Springs, Florida, I learned how to end global warming, for good. In Eunice, New Mexico, I learned how to unequivocally solve the immigration issue. And it was with this information, and much more, that I am running for president. No big money. No special interest backing. Just with tried solutions to make the country a much better place for our kids. While campaigning for president the past 12 years (and over 100,000 road miles), I've been telling people about these answers in hundreds of talks, more than 1,000 newspapers, a lot of radio, television and in a very up-close-and-personal way on the street corners of America. I told Channel 10 News in Albany, Georgia, that I can get a policy enacted long before I ever get to D.C., if somebody picks up on an idea and tries it in their town. And who knows how far out it will ripple out from there. So in a small way, I said during a talk at Toledo University, I am already president now! The students all smiled, politely. Be the change... I am also a firm believer that this won't be a better world for our children until more of us follow the saying: Be the change you want to see in the world. In this pursuit, my family and I try to live the messages we are conveying, at least the best we can. On a radio station in Indianapolis, Indiana, I said our platform asks some people to consider moving into the inner cities of America to live side-by-side with the poor. So our family moved to the heart of Cleveland, Ohio, where we volunteered at an outreach to the poor. I told the Tifton (GA) Gazette that our family has also set aside a Christ Room for the homeless at our place. And in D.C. we'd do the same thing in the West Wing. Just like I may well be looking for a youth baseball team to coach when I get there. I recently coached an inner city Rec. Center League team in Cleveland. On draft day I picked the kids who looked liked they'd be picked last, first. And apparently I did pretty well with this, because we lost almost all the games. Many of the kids on the team, sadly, didn't have a father at home. And many of these families don't have healthcare insurance either, just like two million other Ohioans. To help try to reverse this, my children and I have done volunteer work for the We Are The Uninsured Movement in Ohio. The reason our children are involved is because Liz and I want them learning as much about helping others -- as they do learning about math, science and English, I told The Mississippi Press. In fact, our education platform calls for a lot more local community involvement with students. I we also propose many more classes be focused on environmental awareness. To do our family's part for the environment, we created a "Kyoto Protocol Home Zone." (I even put a "Kyoto Protocol Home Zone" sign up in the front yard, to Liz's embarrassment.) We live in small places, use little air conditioning, cut the thermostat back in the winter, bicycle or walk almost everywhere within a five-mile radius and we recycle practically everything. And in D.C., we'd do all this as well. I mean, those big black limos alone can be such gas guzzlers anyway, right? Heal the family... "My concern for the environment, for the disadvantaged, for the unborn flows out of my spirituality. I'm Catholic, and trying to live the essence of the Gospel message is what I try to be about," I told columnist Mike Haynes of the Amarillo (TX) Globe News. And part of living the Gospel message is being centered in faith, having time for family, being concerned about others. I'm not the poster guy for all that, but I try. What's more, its Liz and my role to make sure our children have a wholesome and emotionally healthy upbringing. And I have some additional expertise in the latter area. Besides having been a journalist, I was also a counselor who worked with family system dynamics. And it is my contention that the current breakdown of the family in America (parents being physically or emotionally abusive, or absent, or addicted to alcohol, drugs, gambling, media entertainment, work) is creating a constellation of societal problems, I told ABC News in Monterey, California. Because of these dysfunctional family dynamics (and they seem to be everywhere these days), kids grow up depressed, angry and emotionally empty. As a result, incidence of domestic violence, street violence, addiction, mental and emotional problems spike in kind for the next generation, and the next... "So to heal the country, you have to heal the family. Theres just no way around it," I told the Bangor (ME) News. And we have a solid plan to do this, based on research weve done in Arthur, Illinois, Holbrook, Arizona, Carmel Valley, California, etc. Snow shoveling... Now when I'm not grappling with these pressing societal issues, my wife Liz is beating me at "Scrabble" (an issue in itself), or I'm playing racquetball with some buddies, or I'm trading baseball cards with our kids. That is, I'm doing all this in between doing chores for Liz. During a campaign talk in Wichita, Kansas, I was asked what the first thing I'd do as president was. I responded that "wed get to D.C. in January, so it would probably be snowing. If that, indeed, were the case -- the first thing Liz would have me do is: shovel the walk. " That will probably be a new one for the Secret Service. And so it goes... Joe

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