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Thinking about the NFL and the Emmy’s

Posted on 27 September 2017 by Scott Cooper

As I have written before, it was the financial bailouts of 2008, during my season of working in branch banking, that I was shaken out of my slumber. Over the course of the next three years, the walks I took with my bride ceased to simply be walks in the neighborhood and nature trails, but hikes through cemeteries and battlefields. Living in the Fredericksburg, VA and the Washington, DC regions, there were plenty of cemeteries and battlefields to explore. We began investing Memorial Day’s and Independence Day’s going to events at these venues – as I personally began thinking about the sacrifice of so many coming before us to provide us a society which ultimately has produced the most affluent and largest middle class in the history of the world.

We are living in historic times. It is my prayer that multitudes of American’s, like myself, are indeed waking up to the forces causing great divisions in our society.

As our middle class today is being crushed, in large part due to crony-capitalistic, centrally controlled governmental policies, the media has us distracted on things that don’t unite, but further our divide, and un-cautious words exacerbate the unravelling.

Last Friday, our Commander in Chief said words which caused players and teams within the NFL to take a knee in protest of his words – when the individual, Colin Kaepernick, who started the trend of taking a knee during the national anthem, wasn’t protesting an individual, but what he saw as a trend of police brutality within the black community.

This weekend, there was a paradigm shift in the purpose of what the original man who took a knee was protesting from a cause to an individual – however I didn’t hear the consequences of this clearly articulated in the media, following the protests at the football games. That’s because I believe the media appreciates, benefits from, thus helps foster more division.

The question should be raised, when is the best time and what is the best format to rally for a civil governance cause? Furthermore, when is the best time, and what is the best format to replace an elected leader you philosophically disagree with, or whose style you disapprove of.

In my humble opinion, taking a knee during a time period we are remembering the folks who lie dead in cemeteries isn’t the appropriate time. Furthermore, entertainment, whether in the sports arena or film awards shows also are not the appropriate time. That is not what I personally purchase a game ticket or a movie ticket for.

We need more American’s engaged in the process of civil governance. There are over 500,000 elected offices in our republic, and there are countless local, state and national boards where all American’s can serve, including actors and sports players. I would humbly urge all those who took a knee during the national anthem on Sunday or who bashed our Commander in Chief at the Emmy’s last week to call their local or state elected official this week, and ask what board has the greatest need, where they could volunteer their time – to help build a better, more unified civil society.

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Leading in an Era of Increased Incivility and Disrespect

Posted on 14 August 2017 by Scott Cooper

My July 26, 2017 print edition of The Edgefield Advertiser was titled “You Have Influence.” It highlighted a worldwide event titled “The Global Leadership Summit,”  which was taking place outside of Chicago on August 10th and 11th, 2017.  I encouraged you to attend the local simulcast event, which was one of over 400 venues participating in the United States.

Returning on Saturday August 12th, as I travelled from Chicago, IL to Greenville, SC for a wedding, the only thing I saw on the television screens both inside the airports and my hotel lobby was the incidents taking place this weekend in Charlottesville, VA, where an extremely small percentage of our population was garnering virtually all the expensive media air time.

As I walked through O’Hare airport, I committed in my own mind to not watch the news, to do my best at tuning out my Facebook feed, which was largely filled with comments about this small percentage of our population, garnering so much attention.  I instead decided to focus my energy on what I had learned in the auditorium of over 10,000 people in a Chicago Suburb, an event where over 400,000 participated nation-wide via simulcast, and another 400,000 plus international folks will participate in the following days.  I pondered on this new generation of leaders, perhaps surpassing over a million worldwide participants, and how this tremendous movement likely received no airtime in the main stream media.

I choose hope.  I believe a new generation of leaders are rising up, in every county of our republic and in many nations of our world.  This new generation will be armed with humility, in addition to other leadership skills and will chart a course where they will not profit from division, like so many do today.

I want to share with you a synopsis of Bill Hybels opening message at this global event.  There are “10 Rules of Respect,”, but he started with a question, followed by making three critical statements.  The question was, “How do we lead in an era of increased incivility and disrespect?”

They statements were, “The solution begins with me,” “The highest value at GLS is humility,” and “Armed with enough humility, you can learn from anyone.”

Here are the “10 Rules of Respect:”

  1. Leaders must set the example for how to differ without demonizing.
  2. Leaders must be able to have spirited conversations without drawing “drawing blood.”
  3. Leaders must not interrupt others who are talking or dominate discussions.
  4. Leaders must set the example of limiting their volume levels and refusing to use “incendiary” or “belittling” words that guarantee to derail true conversation.
  5. Leaders must set the example of being courteous in word and deed . . . to everyone, at every level.
  6. Leaders must never stereotype people.
  7. Leaders must apologize immediately when they are wrong, instead of denying or doubling down.
  8. Leaders must form opinions carefully and stay open-minded if better or new information comes along.
  9. Leaders must set the example of showing up when they say they are going to show up and doing what they say they are going to do.
  10. Leaders must set “Rules of Respect” for everyone in the organization and enforce them relentlessly as a sort of code of conduct.

In closing, what we witnessed in Charlottesville this weekend was not leadership.  It continues to receive the bulk of expensive media time because it gets ratings, which provides advertising revenue, which makes money.  Perhaps I’ll write more about the lack of leadership in the media next week, but for now, I sincerely hope you will join me in praying for the next generation of leaders, which ARE being developed, who WILL lead based on the points above, and will not seek to profit through division.

Here’s wishing you a productive week!

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Invest Your Time in Two Books for Independence Day

Posted on 30 June 2017 by Scott Cooper

Last week my column discussed our collective need to work on “Improving Our Communication Skills.”  The previous editorial discussed “Starting the Investment,” specifically thinking about a summer reading list for those graduating from Middle School.  “Starting the Investment,” compared the relative maturity of young men and women graduating from the 8th grade 100 years ago to today, and recommended a book, Do Hard Things, written by modern teenagers, sharing history of some heroic teens of other era’s, as an inspiration for today’s teens to initiate a “rebelution against low expectations!”  Yes, it’s a play on words, combining rebel and revolution.  Their website is

This week, as Independence Day celebrations approach, we should remember the American Patriots who simply wanted individual liberty were considered rebels and that their effort began formally legislatively, but ultimately led to a revolution.  In that light as we consider how to improve our communication skills about our struggle for liberty today, I urge all of us to add two books to our summer reading list, which I believe will expand our thoughts about what the celebrations this coming weekend really mean.

The financial entanglements our ancestors fought against prior to our first Independence Day were far less significant than the financial entanglements we face today.  Today our central government rewards itself and “the players” both inside and outside of government for doing the exact opposite of what we celebrate this weekend.  Expanding dependency has become the largest byproduct of virtually every government program.  Yet this weekend we continue to celebrate independence and liberty, while at the same time embracing policies which limit choice and increase dependence.  I find this curious, and troubling.

The two books I recommend are:

Future editorials will disc

uss the books in more detail.  I am confident that some of the polarized advocates I referenced in last week’s “Improving our Communication Skills” will have choice words about the first author.  When you find those, remember, they are attacking a person, but not the content.  Remember, that tactic is an effort to stop discussion by demeaning the person.  I call on all of us to do and demand better, and I hope you will too!

As you read the books and have thoughts about the content, I would love to discuss the thoughts with you either on the Edgefield Advertiser editorial page, where this will be posted, or on my Facebook page, where it will also be posted.

Here’s wishing you a very rewarding Independence Day Weekend Celebration with family and friends.

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Improving Our Communication Skills

Posted on 21 June 2017 by Scott Cooper

The greatest challenge we have in our republic is avoiding consequences caused by polarized advocates who can’t hear each other.  The screaming from the extreme is so loud the middle can’t hear a clear message or see a clear path, even when we have a middle of the road compassionate leader, who is trying to articulate one.

One could say the extremes don’t want to hear each other.  Better stated, they don’t want you to hear.

Many have been trained to shut down debate as soon alternative views are shared, by calling names.  Spend any time in Social Media, and you will see this is true.  The name often ends with “phobia,” includes racist, or the individual is labeled uncompassionate.  Words like ignorant or snowflake are also commonly used, but the result is the same – the ability to hear the ideas expressed, if there are any legitimate ideas, is drowned out by name calling.

Some believe the tactic of name calling is utilized because the individual employing this strategy doesn’t really have a coherent message, or isn’t confident enough in their message to discuss it civilly.  I believe there is some truth to that.  Regardless of which polarized side uses the tactic, we need to demand better.

Most citizens, when this tactic is employed simply tune out.  I would urge more citizens to rather than tune out, that we toughen our personal skin, engage and demand better.  Let us NOT allow the polarized utilizing this tactic be successful, where the good patriotic citizen disengages, but rather may the good patriotic citizen stand up, demand more from the bully – enabling the bully to either hone their debate skills, or pick up their sticks and stones, and go home.

I believe the middle of our country, which is where our Commander-in-Chief, with his 8th grade tweeting style regularly reaches, is up to the debate, and up to any required change we must execute to achieve a more unified, financially stable and sustainable republic.

The tactics described above, which are rampantly being deployed, lead to comedians like Kathy Griffin, plays like “The staging of Julius Caesar” by the New York City Public Theater, where a sitting President is assassinated, or the mass assassination attempt last week of the GOP Congressional Baseball team in Alexandria, VA.

These tactics must stop, or we will continue to see an escalation of violence.  The duty lies with us though, average American’s, to engage and put an end to it.  It won’t stop on its own in the media or on the University Campus.  It will only stop when the middle demands it to stop.

I hope you have a blessed and productive week!

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Reflections on The Response: A Call to Prayer For Our Nation

Posted on 15 June 2015 by Scott Cooper

The Response II

This weekend I travelled to Charleston, SC to attend The Response: A Call to Prayer for our Nation. Somewhere between 4,000 – 7,000 individuals (my guestimate) from all denominations, all races, all socio-economic status and all age groups gathered to simply petition our heavenly father to work His plan in our nation.

The six hour event was divided into five specific areas, where the crowd individually and corporately prayed for each of these items to take place in our individual lives, the lives of our families, our local communities and our country:

  • Repentance
  • Reconciliation
  • Revival
  • Reformation
  • Refreshing belief in Jesus Christ

South Carolina is now the third state where such a large, diverse group has gathered specifically for the purpose of prayer and fasting has taken place.  The first was in Texas and the second was in Louisiana.

While there were two Governors who spoke, this event was NOT political.  The event was free to the public and there was no indication of who sponsored this event, which certainly wasn’t inexpensive, as the Charleston Coliseum was rented out for the entire day.  With the exception of the two Governors, I am not sure any names or organizations were even mentioned, and dozens of individuals participated on stage.

At the outset, the leader said (I am paraphrasing), “Heaven is going to look like this – a coat of many colors: all races will be present, all ages will be present, and all socio-economic statuses we experience on earth will be present.  We are asking everyone to come into this place in a spirit of worship – to leave your titles, your accomplishments, your organizations, and your agenda’s outside this place.  Today we are simply here to see what God has for us, as we divide the day up into these five categories (listed above).”

To this point, I have been unable to find many videos of Saturday’s event.  It is possible to see a few short clips, as well as pictures by reviewing The Response Facebook Page.

It should be noted that the audience was 15 – 20 % black, and those who participated on stage were 35 – 40 % Black.  There were numerious hispanics, as well as other ethnic groups present as well.  I simply give that estimation (mine) of the statistics, so you know it was a diverse setting, which is required for the five goals to honestly be attained.  Also, some of the most poignant prayers came from the youth and young adults, ages 15 – 25, who were honoring to the older generations but also recognizing how much work is ahead of their generation.  Out of the mouth of babes often comes the greatest wisdom – as they have not yet been conformed to the things which hold us back.

I am going to try and summarize each point in just a few sentences:

  • Repentance: Today our society celebrates that which is evil, and condemns that which is virtuous and we humbly seek forgiveness for allowing this to take place in our culture, on our watch.
  • Reconciliation: Today we have allowed our society to become more divided than ever – by age groups, by socio-economic class and by race. We recognize that God created each of us as individuals, with specific gifts and talents to be used to benefit all in society – and we pray for the walls between the generations, between the classes and between the races to be broken.
  • Revival: Revival does not happen for unbelievers. It happens within the hearts and communities of those who already call on the name of Jesus Christ.  Our nation is filled with dry bones, and we humbly pray for God to blow a mighty wind on the dry bones of The American Church – to wake us up so that we might be faithful to His calling on our lives, in our families, in our communities, our state and our nation.
  • Reformation: We don’t seek the reformation of others – we seek the reformation of our own hearts, families, churches communities, states, and nation – that we might place virtue above all else. Without fixing our own lives, families, and churches first – we cannot have the impact which is required on our culture.
  • Refreshing: This was simply a time of praise and worship. Many went to the “mosh pit,” or the front of the room to lift hands, and dance before the Lord.  It truly was a coat of many colors – where the things which divide were not present.

The Response Mosh Pit

Because of the work I have been engaged in, both through the Social Conservative movement, and specifically helping to put on The National Security Summits, which are being conducted in many of the early primary states, I had the privilege to be asked to participate in the prayers from the stage, specifically to pray for the National Security of our Country.  Honestly, because I had not personally met any of the organizers before, I chose to simply go and participate as an individual.  Observation before participation has become something I have learned, sometimes the hard way, in the last four years.  After attending the event, there is no question in my heart, mind or spirit that this effort is Spirit led, and it gives me great hope – because the numbers of those whose hearts are pure, and are praying for our country – both inside our borders and outside our borders are growing.  I believe the growth is becoming exponential.  When The Response comes to your state – I would highly recommend not only attending, but doing all you can to help promote it, and get people there.

What this means for our future may not be what we expect or even desire.  God’s ways, actions and timetables are generally not ours.  He is however at work, and we have a lot to look forward to in the future.

In closing, I want to share two things:

  • Another area of hope I have – but also a sliver of disappointment. I have had the privilege of traveling South Carolina quite a bit in the last 2 years, as a result of both High Frontier, and helping on a U.S. Senate Campaign.  As a result – rarely do I go to such a large event where I do not see several people I already know.  On Saturday, in such a large crowd, I spent the day with a good friend of mine, who also relocated to South Carolina from Virginia.  He drove from Myrtle Beach, where he now resides, to invest his day at The Response.  He was the only other individual who I personally know who I saw there.  In a way, it saddened me that I did not see more of my evangelical brothers and sisters, who I already know, who desire to see these five points achieved in our culture, in our lifetimes, invest a day in this effort.  Obviously, it could be simply because there was an unawareness.  This leads me to think of one of the points of the day – the need for our individual churches to stop being territorial, to get outside of our boxes, and unite with other believers outside of the four walls of our own church.  United, we can impact culture but divided we will not.  On the flip side – it also gives me great hope – because the pool of individuals who The Holy Spirit is working on is far larger than we know, or likely can even imagine!
  • Governor Bobby Jindal shared his testimony, and it was phenomenal. I was hoping that I would be able to find it on YouTube, and while I couldn’t find Saturday’s – I did find the testimony he gave at The Response in Baton Rouge.  It is very similar – and I would encourage everyone to invest the time to watch it.  You can watch Bobby Jindal’s testimony by clicking here.

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So Many Folks……….

Posted on 06 June 2015 by Scott Cooper

Perception Reality Crossroads

So many folks tell me their perception is my life is centered in politics. The reality is my heart is concerned with culture – and politics is simply downstream of where my heart is.


The life of my family has gone through extreme transitions in the last three years.  I am not going to list them here – but suffice it to say that in 2012 we started a journey that was 180 degrees from the path we were on, and drastically different than anything we had planned on in the two decades leading up to our transition. As is the case with all of life, road blocks and speed bumps have been visited along the way. We are grateful for the hardships, challenges, opportunities and the triumphs!

One of the focuses I had when leading a civic organization in Fredericksburg, VA in 2011 and 2012, prior to moving to South Carolina, was to be strategic in that organizations communications.  It was critical to me that we stopped overwhelming our member’s e-mail boxes. So we diligently strived to have only one communication via e-mail per week.  We gave folks who found us via social media, or through the forwarding of e-mails an opportunity to subscribe to our communications.  More importantly – we gave people an opportunity to opt out, or stop receiving our communications without having to tell us.  What we found during that time period – is our overall readership drastically increased.  Our readership and influence increased when we began limiting our total communications.

I share those two things with you because since that time period, due to my life and professional experiences I have had the heart to write on a multitude of issues.  I believe the vast majority of these issues impact and interest you and your sphere of influence.  Honestly, the majority of the issues are about business, life and culture, not politics – but as I mentioned starting out – politics is downstream.  It isn’t downstream of only culture, but just everything in life.  Furthermore, due to our transition I have not been able to commit the time, or quite honestly with everything going on, have the discipline required to be consistent in writing.  Beginning June 1st of 2015 I am now committing a portion of each week toward this effort.

I would like your permission to once a week share links to my writings and thoughts with you via e-mail – which will always link back to my personal website.  If you would like to receive this weekly summary – please sign up in the upper right hand corner of this page.

What will the topics cover, you may ask?

Through my career I have been engaged in the following industries: Travel, Big Box Retailing, Banking, Technology, Agriculture, Non-Profit Work and Political Campaigns.  My life experiences have taken me all around our great country, Europe, Israel and the former U.S.S.R.  I have lived in communities, and with housemates, which were extremely diverse and communities which were not. I have friends and mentors which are at very high levels of the worldly “success” spectrum as well as friends and mentors who are not, but although they don’t outwardly exude worldly “success,” they truly are the salt of the earth.

I mention all of that simply because most of the issues we face today are what I call “non-respecter of person” issues.  In other words, they impact everyone – and despite our leadership wanting to put us into boxes based on race, gender, socio-economic status, nationality or faith – we are all part of the same human race.

So, the topics will be varied and on things that impact us all.

I am going to close with something I shared on my Facebook Wall last night:

“I honestly think the years ahead of us are going to be the most challenging, but also the most exhilarating. God placed each of us here for this time, and this place.

Yes – there will be many of us who will see the proper course, who will come up severely lacking in will and resolve. But I believe there are vastly more individuals His Spirit is preparing in ways we cannot comprehend – and in the end, good will be achieved.

Lots of negative things being reported out there.  Chaos and negativity sells – for some reason.  But there are good things happening too.  Bridges being built – people seeking to understand vs. simply being understood – folks getting outside of their boxes and comfort zones – and legitimate love and charity taking place.”

I can’t wait for the future!

#BringItOn #LetsRoll

Again – if you would like to subscribe to my weekly summaries, please do so in the upper right hand corner of this page.


Scott Cooper

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Something to Do With Your Family, as You Celebrate Memorial Day

Posted on 25 May 2015 by Scott Cooper


As we celebrate Memorial Day, a day rightly set aside to honor the fallen from past wars, those men and women from the military services who gave all to provide liberty to us, are on the forefront of my mind.

But the way my mind works – I also can’t help but think about the tests to religious liberty we have experienced in just the last couple years and then reflect on the men and women who fell during the first winter at Plymouth Rock in Massachusetts.  While they were not serving in the military, they laid down their lives to begin a foundation for what 150 years later would become The United States of America.

In history class we learn about Pilgrims who escaped not only the tyranny of high taxes and high government debt, but most importantly came to the new world to start a new life seeking religious liberty, and forming a new government which originated with the Mayflower Compact.

45 of the 102, or 44 %, of those who came on the first ship died that first winter – including the wife of their leader, William Bradford.  Despite that horrific percentage, when given the opportunity to return to The Old World the following spring, not one of the remaining 57 choose to give up on the generational inheritance they had committed in their hearts and minds to provide for us.

On March 2, 2012 I shared with those who follow my blog, and are on my e-mail list about Kirk Cameron’s one night Simulcast of the movie Monumental.

This weekend I shared with a very good friend the importance of that movie – and after spending yesterday evening reflecting on it – I decided I want to encourage you to not only enjoy the BBQ’s, Parades, Beer, Wine and Soda’s as we celebrate those who gave all – but to invest a little time with your family either today or in the coming week to learn about this amazing group, who gave 44 % of their population some 395 years ago, that we may “stand on their backs,” and enjoy the fruit of their investment to the cause of liberty.

For those who subscribe to Amazon Prime, the movie is available via streaming.  To those who do not, you can enjoy a 30 day free trial of Amazon Prime in order to watch this film.

In order to pass the baton of Liberty on to our children and grandchildren, we truly need to understand the lives of those who came before us – and investing the time in this movie, with our families, I believe, will help us understand this inter-generational baton race each of us are a part of.

May God Bless you and you family on this beautiful holiday weekend – and may we both individually and collectively bless God, in order that He may choose to bless our very much loved republic.

Scott Cooper

P.S.  In addition to the encouragement to watch the movie – I want to provide you with three things –

1.  Glenn Beck in February 2012 interviewed Kirk Cameron about Monumental.  It is a good explanation of the “why” behind the movie.  I would encourage you to watch it!

  1. One of my favorite video’s from Michael W. Smith – reflecting on our Flag –

  1. To those who served – but are still with us – Thank you!

Once a Soldir

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Dad, I’m finally going to Clemson!

Posted on 10 April 2015 by Scott Cooper

Palmetto Panel

It is hard to believe it has been 30 years since my father was lobbying me to become a Clemson Tiger.  I was his last hope, after both my sisters chose to become Virginia Tech Gobblers.  Well sadly, I let him down when I chose to become a Taylor Trojan, and attended Taylor University in Indiana!

The good news is, now that I live in South Carolina, I have had multiple opportunities to be on the campus of Clemson University – and one opportunity is next weekend, Saturday April 18th at The Palmetto Panel.  The Palmetto Panel is a citizen led one day conference on state level solutions to many of the key issues we are facing – from healthcare, energy, national security, school choice, tax policy, political corruption, and many, many others.

High Frontier, the organization I am working with, will be there speaking on the critical issue of securing our nations electric grid and the role South Carolina could and should play in leading the nation.  Specifically, we believe we should harden the cooling systems of South Carolina’s four Nuclear Power Plants ASAP, which would enable South Carolina to lead the nation in getting the electric grid back up, if God forbid we don’t solve the entire problem on time.

I am well aware that you may not live in South Carolina.  If you do, I hope you will join us next Saturday!  If you do not, I encourage you to share this information with your sphere of influence WHO DO live in South Carolina.  Please click here to R.S.V.P. or to see event details.

To follow, in alphabetical order, are all the presenters – and the subjects they will be discussing:

Talbert Black – Mr. Black is the founder of Palmetto Liberty PAC and will provide an overview of issues at the State Level

State Senator Lee Bright – Senator Bright will be discussing three key issues:  American Laws for American Courts legislation, Registration by Party legislation and the Conflict of Interest that exists when the State Senate appoints South Carolina Judges.

State Senator Kevin Bryant – Senator Bryant will be discussing School Choice Legislation and The Healthcare Freedom Act.

Ambassador Henry Cooper – Ambassador Cooper is the Chairman of High Frontier and will be discussing solutions to Securing our Electric Grid and how South Carolina can and should lead the nation.

SC U.S. Congressman Jeff Duncan – Congressman Duncan will be discussing the importance of Off Shore Drilling, and what that would do for the economy of South Carolina.

Sheri Few – Ms. Few is the President and CEO of SC Parents Involved in Education. She will be discussing two issues: Common Core and the Refugee Resettlement Program taking place in South Carolina.

SC Representative Jonathon Hill – Representative Hill is a freshman representative and he will be discussing what life is like for the freshman legislator and what it is like running for office.

Ashley Landess – Ms. Landess is the President of the South Carolina Policy Council.  She will be discussing 8 points necessary to make South Carolina the freest state in the country.

Emery McClendon – Mr. McClendon is a board member of Project 21, and a nationally known Conservative activist.  He will be discussing the importance of strengthening citizen engagement at the state level.

Kurt Potter – Mr. Potter is a Founding Member of the Center for Self Governance.  He will be discussing the work the Center for Self Governance is doing and the training of citizen activists they offer.

Alex Saitta – Mr. Saitta is a member of the Pickens County School Board, and he will be discussing his journey of exposing the truth about the funding of our schools at the county level.

Thom Shea – Mr. Shea is a retired Navy Seal and is currently the CEO of Adamantine Alliance.  He will be providing an inspirational message “Never Give Up!”

Dan Tripp – Mr. Trip is the Founder of Ground Game Strategies.  He will be discussing the Healthcare Compact – which is a program encouraging states to contract together to move medical decisions back to the state level.

Ellen Weaver – Ms. Weaver is the President of Palmetto Policy Forum and she will be providing an overview of the issues effecting South Carolina.

I look forward to seeing many of my South Carolina friends at this timely and critical event next weekend.  Again, I would appreciate you forwarding this to your sphere of influence living inside South Carolina.


Scott Cooper



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Why I Have Hope for 2015!

Posted on 01 January 2015 by Scott Cooper

Mercies 2

Taking my own annual advice, I attempted to complete “Three of The Most Important Things You Can Do This Time of Year” – which is something I found via Doug Phillips about 16 years ago.  As a result of this effort, I want to share with you a few things that give me hope as we enter into 2015.

Doug recommends you chronicle things from throughout the previous year, like bills, checkbooks, diary’s, calendar’s, correspondence, books / articles you wrote or read, etc.  One of the things I reviewed during my “chronicling process” was some of my postings, both to my website and over Social Media during the course of the last couple years.  While I typically spend a little time in Social Media every day, and have done so for several years, I have been inconsistent in posting to my actual website, which is something I hope to improve on in 2015.

Here are three things which give me hope as we enter 2015:

Social Media Gives Me Hope:

I am thankful for Social Media and the increase in the blogosphere.  It gives me hope for several reasons.  First I believe it is one of the greatest tools which can be used for the defense of one of our greatest inalienable rights – The First Amendment.  Freedom of speech, freedom of thought, freedom of expression and freedom of association are all amazing gifts the founders of our country bequeathed to us – and never before in history have average citizens had the ability to share their thoughts and ideas to an audience that reaches beyond their own sphere of influence.  I believe Social Media will play a critical role in our preserving this gift, The First Amendment.

Second, over the last two generations journaling really has become a lost art, which is curious because the popularity of websites like, and is at an all-time high.  So while this generation has a fascination with looking to our past, most are not intentionally journaling to leave a record for their future generations.  Social media however is providing that for us – it provides a permanent record for those who come behind us, of the things we valued in our lifetimes.  As a student of history – I believe this is a good thing and I believe it will be incredibly valuable to future generations – not only for individual families, but in the study of sociology.

In reviewing my personal website, I thought it was interesting that the first post of 2013, and the last post of 2013 both dealt with National Security.  The first 6 months of 2014 was exceptionally busy for me, and I didn’t post anything until August.  Between August and December, I had 11 Postings.  Three of them dealt with National Security Issues; however 8 of them incorporated Faith into the post.  As I reflect not only on 2014 – but the last several years, that trend in my personal life gives me hope – because I see that trend – the trend to highlight faith – among many, many others as well, not just my own life.  I will return to this later.

Renewal of Leadership Gives Me Hope:

As a result of the activities I have been engaged in since the economic collapse and the financial bailouts, I have had the privilege in the last few years of meeting literally hundreds of people from all around the country.  Many are individuals who as a result of hardship or frustration got involved in the civic arena. As a result, today they are leaders in their local and state communities in ways they had never planned, expected or desired.

One can look at this and consider the old question: “Is one born to lead or do circumstances create the leader?”  Looking at the development of these unexpected leaders during this time period of history – I believe both is true, but I also have come to believe that leadership doesn’t come with birth, degree or position.  There are many with advanced degrees and many in positions of leadership who due to self-interest choose to go along to get along, vs. lead.  Stated differently, they choose not to influence for the things they believe in, because there will be a cost involved.  For many who are new in the arena, this has been frustrating – but as we study history (which this group has intensely done these last few years), it has come to be expected.  There is nothing new under the sun.

These hundreds of new, unexpected leaders will continue to grow in 2015 – and that gives me great hope!

Renewal in Faith Gives Me Hope:

For me, the most rewarding part of meeting these new leaders from around the country hasn’t been the focus on the issues that brought them into the arena – whether they be tax issues, spending issues, national defense / Patriot Act / NSA issues, IRS abuse issues, Education issues, agriculture / food supply issues, healthcare issues, energy issues, environmental issues – or any of the other issues that are out there these days – but the key ingredient among the vast majority of these new leaders is their belief that it is our Judeo-Christian Heritage which led to our republic being the most prosperous, productive and blessed nation in history, and their desire to see a restoration of virtue and a spiritual awakening in our country.  For the vast majority of these new friends and new leaders – that one issue trumps almost every other focus.  There are too many evidences of this to list, but those new leaders who I refer to in this post will know exactly what I am speaking about.  I have spoken with many in the course of the last year(s) who are most thankful for this resurgence of activism, because it has placed them in contact with friends in the faith based community, all around the country, that they never would have met otherwise.

This is encouraging – and it gives me great hope, not only for 2015, but for beyond!  I pray it gives you hope as well!

Happy New Year!  Many blessings to you and yours!

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Christmas Isn’t Over Yet

Posted on 29 December 2014 by Scott Cooper

Family Picture

It is our prayer that you had a blessed time with family and friends this Christmas season.  The above picture shows that we are all still kickin’ – and the bottom picture shows that our family continues to expand!  Yes – we are taking orders for #SaladBarBeef – which will be ready for market in 2017!

Even though we finished putting away all the Christmas decorations last night, the culmination of our Christmas celebration will really be on April 5th – Easter Sunday, when we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ! 

Even at birth, Jesus knew he was born with a purpose – to live, to die and to be resurrected – with the sole purpose of saving a lost world, which was dying in its sin.  We are looking forward to the culmination of this Christmas celebration in April – when we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ – for if there was no resurrection, the celebration of Jesus’s birth would have little meaning!

In our last two New Year’s Day greetings (2012 and 2013), I shared a blog written by Doug Phillips.  It is titled “Three of the Most Important Things You Can Do This Time of Year.”  As I mentioned in last year’s note and posting – I was concerned that Doug’s blog might be taken down – and indeed it was – so I am thankful I gave him credit and posted it here.

Most of us will have a long weekend this weekend.  I know it is unusual for a Christmas Message / New Year’s Message ask something of you – but this one does!

If you have not done it in the past, I would encourage you to read through Doug’s blog (linked) – and take some time doing the things he suggests.  (Just recognize you need to change the year!)  We have some exciting times in our future – beginning in 2015 – and I believe his encouragement will help each of us move victoriously into our future!

May God bless you and your family as you prepare to enter 2015!

Scott and Suzy Cooper

The Littles

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