Orson Scott Card
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Copyright © 1998-2011 Roger A. Lee and History Guy Media; Last Modified: 05.14.11
Orson Scott Card
Orson Scott Card- (b. August 24, 1951)
Orson Scott Card (b August 24, 1951) is a bestselling American science-fiction author, critic, political writer and speaker. Card is best known for the novel Ender's Game (1985) and its sequel Speaker for the Dead (1986) , which both won Hugo and Nebula Awards.
Orson Scott Card was born in Richland, Washington, but raised in California, Arizona, and Utah. He served as a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Brazil and graduated from Brigham Young University and the University of Utah; he also spent a year in a Ph.D. program at the University of Notre Dame. Card lives in Greensboro, North Carolina.
Card is active as a critic, political writer, and speaker. Shortly after the September 11, 2001 attacks Card began to write a weekly column named variously "War Watch", "World Watch", or "Civilization Watch", depending upon the topic. The column is published in the Greensboro Rhinoceros Times. Card also writes an "Uncle Orson Reviews Everything" column. Both columns are archived on Card's websites. Card is a vocal supporter of many aspects of George W. Bush's leadership style, the war on terror, aspects of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and aspects of the USA PATRIOT Act.
Card was attending Mormon worship service in California on June 29 2008 when a letter from President Thomas S. Monson of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was read out, asking all active members to "do all you can" to support the California Proposition 8 (2008) by "donating of your means and time...to preserve the sacred institution of marriage."In response to that letter, Card began a series of articles as part of his regular column in the Mormon Times "to address, one by one, my compelling secular arguments in favor of giving permanent heterosexual pairings a monopoly on legally recognized status in all societies".
Card identifies himself as a Democrat because he is pro-gun control/anti-National Rifle Association, highly critical of free-market capitalism, and because he believes that the Republican party in the South continues to tolerate racism. Card encapsulated his views thus:
Maybe the Democrats will even accept the idea that sometimes the people don't want to create your utopian vision (especially when your track record is disastrous and your "utopias" keep looking like hell)... The Democratic Party ought to be standing as the bulwark of the little guy against big money and rapacious free-market capitalism, here and abroad. After all, the Republicans seem to be dominated by their own group of insane utopianswhen they're not making huggy-huggy with all those leftover racists from the segregationist past.
He has described himself as a Moynihan Democrat, and later as a "Tony Blair" Democrat, saying he has to look outside the U.S. for someone representative for his views now that Moynihan has died and the Democrats oppose Bush. He has written columns condemning extremist liberals as being part of what's wrong with America, and praises Zell Miller for trying to save the Democratic Party. During the 2004 election Card wrote many articles supporting the Bush/Cheney ticket, criticizing John Kerry, and lambasting his own state's senator, John Edwards, as being absurd, insincere, and an opportunistic shill. Prior to the 2004 presidential race, Card had written that his state needed to regain control from people like Edwards and advocated running a strong primary opponent against Edwards should he run for reelection to the Senate. He has also been a staunch defender of Fox News, stating that "It's a good feeling to hear about our war from people who actually think it would be a good thing if we win." Card also publicly endorses children of illegal immigrants receiving in-state college tuition rates and has stated there is a need for moderation in tax cuts.
On November 6, 2006, just one day before a major election in the United States, Card wrote an opinion piece for RealClearPolitics, in which he encourages voters to support the Republicans:
There is only one issue in this election that will matter five or ten years from now, and that's the War on Terror... I say this as a Democrat, for whom the Republican domination of government threatens many values that I hold to be important to America's role as a light among nations. But there are no values that matter to me that will not be gravely endangered if we lose this war.
On October 20, 2008, less than two weeks before the Presidential election in the United States, Card wrote an opinion piece for The Greensboro Rhino Times, where he chastises the US media for hiding the true blame for the 2008 Credit Crisis and for mis-directing public perception in favor of Senator Barack Obama. The article's aim is to find reporters who will vigorously report the truth, regardless of whether it is for or against their preferred political candidate.
Would the Last Honest Reporter Please Turn On the Lights?
by Orson Scott Card from The Ornery American
October 20, 2008
An open letter to the local daily paper -- almost every local daily paper in America:
I remember reading All the President's Men and thinking: That's journalism. You do what it takes to get the truth and you lay it before the public, because the public has a right to know.
This housing crisis didn't come out of nowhere. It was not a vague emanation of the evil Bush administration.
It was a direct result of the political decision, back in the late 1990s, to loosen the rules of lending so that home loans would be more accessible to poor people. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were authorized to approve risky loans.
What is a risky loan? It's a loan that the recipient is likely not to be able to repay.
The goal of this rule change was to help the poor -- which especially would help members of minority groups. But how does it help these people to give them a loan that they can't repay? They get into a house, yes, but when they can't make the payments, they lose the house -- along with their credit rating.
They end up worse off than before.
This was completely foreseeable and in fact many people did foresee it. One political party, in Congress and in the executive branch, tried repeatedly to tighten up the rules. The other party blocked every such attempt and tried to loosen them.
Furthermore, Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae were making political contributions to the very members of Congress who were allowing them to make irresponsible loans. (Though why quasi-federal agencies were allowed to do so baffles me. It's as if the Pentagon were allowed to contribute to the political campaigns of congressmen who support increasing their budget.)
Isn't there a story here? Doesn't journalism require that you who produce our daily paper tell the truth about who brought us to a position where the only way to keep confidence in our economy was a $700 billion bailout? Aren't you supposed to follow the money and see which politicians were benefiting personally from the deregulation of mortgage lending?
I have no doubt that if these facts had pointed to the Republican Party or to John McCain as the guilty parties, you would be treating it as a vast scandal. "Housing-gate," no doubt. Or "Fannie-gate."
Instead, it was Sen. Christopher Dodd and Congressman Barney Frank, both Democrats, who denied that there were any problems, who refused Bush administration requests to set up a regulatory agency to watch over Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and who were still pushing for these agencies to go even further in promoting subprime mortgage loans almost up to the minute they failed.
As Thomas Sowell points out in a TownHall.com essay entitled "Do Facts Matter?" (http://snipurl.com/457to): "Alan Greenspan warned them four years ago. So did the Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers to the President. So did Bush's Secretary of the Treasury."
These are facts. This financial crisis was completely preventable. The party that blocked any attempt to prevent it was ... the Democratic Party. The party that tried to prevent it was ... the Republican Party.
Yet when Nancy Pelosi accused the Bush administration and Republican deregulation of causing the crisis, you in the press did not hold her to account for her lie. Instead, you criticized Republicans who took offense at this lie and refused to vote for the bailout!
What? It's not the liar, but the victims of the lie who are to blame?
Now let's follow the money ... right to the presidential candidate who is the number two recipient of campaign contributions from Fannie Mae.
And after Fred Raines, the CEO of Fannie Mae who made $90 million while running it into the ground, was fired for his incompetence, one presidential candidate's campaign actually consulted him for advice on housing.
If that presidential candidate had been John McCain, you would have called it a major scandal and we would be getting stories in your paper every day about how incompetent and corrupt he was.
But instead, that candidate was Barack Obama, and so you have buried this story, and when the McCain campaign dared to call Raines an "adviser" to the Obama campaign -- because that campaign had sought his advice -- you actually let Obama's people get away with accusing McCain of lying, merely because Raines wasn't listed as an official adviser to the Obama campaign.
You would never tolerate such weasely nit-picking from a Republican.
If you who produce our local daily paper actually had any principles, you would be pounding this story, because the prosperity of all Americans was put at risk by the foolish, short-sighted, politically selfish and possibly corrupt actions of leading Democrats, including Obama.
If you who produce our local daily paper had any personal honor, you would find it unbearable to let the American people believe that somehow Republicans were to blame for this crisis.
There are precedents. Even though President Bush and his administration never said that Iraq sponsored or was linked to 9/11, you could not stand the fact that Americans had that misapprehension -- so you pounded us with the fact that there was no such link. (Along the way, you created the false impression that Bush had lied to them and said that there was a connection.)
If you had any principles, then surely right now, when the American people are set to blame President Bush and John McCain for a crisis they tried to prevent, and are actually shifting to approve of Barack Obama because of a crisis he helped cause, you would be laboring at least as hard to correct that false impression.
Your job, as journalists, is to tell the truth. That's what you claim you do, when you accept people's money to buy or subscribe to your paper.
But right now, you are consenting to or actively promoting a big fat lie -- that the housing crisis should somehow be blamed on Bush, McCain and the Republicans. You have trained the American people to blame everything bad -- even bad weather -- on Bush, and they are responding as you have taught them to.
If you had any personal honor, each reporter and editor would be insisting on telling the truth -- even if it hurts the election chances of your favorite candidate.
Because that's what honorable people do. Honest people tell the truth even when they don't like the probable consequences. That's what honesty means. That's how trust is earned.
Barack Obama is just another politician, and not a very wise one. He has revealed his ignorance and naivete time after time -- and you have swept it under the rug, treated it as nothing.
Meanwhile, you have participated in the borking of Sarah Palin, reporting savage attacks on her for the pregnancy of her unmarried daughter -- while you ignored the story of John Edwards' own adultery for many months.
So I ask you now: Do you have any standards at all? Do you even know what honesty means?
Is getting people to vote for Barack Obama so important that you will throw away everything that journalism is supposed to stand for?
You might want to remember the way the National Organization of Women (NOW) threw away their integrity by supporting Bill Clinton despite his well-known pattern of sexual exploitation of powerless women. Who listens to NOW anymore? We know they stand for nothing; they have no principles.
That's where you are right now.
It's not too late. You know that if the situation were reversed, and the truth would damage McCain and help Obama, you would be moving heaven and earth to get the true story out there.
If you want to redeem your honor, you will swallow hard and make a list of all the stories you would print if it were McCain who had been getting money from Fannie Mae, McCain whose campaign had consulted with its discredited former CEO, McCain who had voted against tightening its lending practices.
Then you will print them, even though every one of those true stories will point the finger of blame at the reckless Democratic Party, which put our nation's prosperity at risk so they could feel good about helping the poor, and lay a fair share of the blame at Obama's door.
You will also tell the truth about John McCain: that he tried, as a senator, to do what it took to prevent this crisis. You will tell the truth about President Bush: that his administration tried more than once to get Congress to regulate lending in a responsible way.
This was a Congress-caused crisis, beginning during the Clinton administration, with Democrats leading the way into the crisis and blocking every effort to get out of it in a timely fashion.
If you at our local daily newspaper continue to let Americans believe -- and vote as if -- President Bush and the Republicans caused the crisis, then you are joining in that lie.
If you do not tell the truth about the Democrats -- including Barack Obama -- and do so with the same energy you would use if the miscreants were Republicans -- then you are not journalists by any standard.
You're just the public relations machine of the Democratic Party, and it's time you were all fired and real journalists brought in, so that we can actually have a daily newspaper in our city.
Bibliography of Orson Scott Card:
The Ender saga
Ender's Game (1985)
Speaker for the Dead (1986)
Ender's War- Ender's Game and Speaker for the Dead together
Children of the Mind (1996)
First Meetings (2002) - short story collection
"Mazer in Prison" (2005) - short story published online
"Pretty Boy" (2006) - short story published online
"Cheater" (2006) - short story published online
"A Young Man with Prospects" (2007) - short story published online
"The Gold Bug" (2007) - short story published online
"Ender's Stocking" (2007) - short story published online
"Ender's Homecoming" (2008) - short story published online
"Ender in Flight" (2008) - short story published online
A War of Gifts: An Ender Story (2007)
Ender in Exile (planned for November, 2008)
The Shadow saga
Ender's Shadow (1999) - "parallel" novel to Ender's Game
Shadow of the Hegemon (2001)
Shadow Puppets (2002)
Shadow of the Giant (2005)
Shadows in Flight (forthcoming)
The Tales of Alvin Maker
"Prentice Alvin and the No-Good Plow" (1989) - poem
Seventh Son (1987)
Red Prophet (1988)
Prentice Alvin (1989)
Alvin Journeyman (1995)
"Grinning Man" (1998) - short story
"The Yazoo Queen" (2003) - short story
The Crystal City (2003)
Master Alvin (forthcoming)
The Homecoming Saga
The Memory of Earth (1992)
The Call of Earth (1992)
The Ships of Earth (1994)
The "Women of Genesis" series
Rachel and Leah (2004)
The Wives of Israel (forthcoming)
Main article: Pastwatch series
Pastwatch: The Redemption of Christopher Columbus (1996)
Pastwatch: The Flood (forthcoming)
Pastwatch: The Garden of Eden (forthcoming)
The Mayflower trilogy
Lovelock (1994) - with Kathryn H. Kidd
Rasputin (forthcoming) - with Kathryn H. Kidd
The Worthing series
Hot Sleep (1978)
The Worthing Chronicle (1983)
The Worthing Saga (1990)
A Planet Called Treason (1978)
Hart's Hope (1983)
Saints (1983) - aka: Woman of Destiny
Treason (1988) - revised edition of A Planet Called Treason
Lost Boys (1992)
Treasure Box (1996)
Stone Tables (1997)
Magic Street (2005)
Invasive Procedures (2007) - with Aaron Johnston
Standalone short story collections
Unaccompanied Sonata and Other Stories (1980)
The Folk of the Fringe (1989)
Maps in a Mirror: The Short Fiction of Orson Scott Card (1990)
The Changed Man (1992)
Monkey Sonatas (1993)
Cruel Miracles (1992)
Keeper of Dreams (2008)
Anthologies edited by Orson Scott Card
Dragons of Light (1980)
Dragons of Darkness (1981)
Future on Fire (1991)
Future on Ice (1998)
The Phobos Science Fiction Anthology Volume 1 (2002)
The Phobos Science Fiction Anthology Volume 2 (2003)
Orson Scott Card's InterGalactic Medicine Show (2008)
The Abyss (1989) - novelization of the movie with James Cameron
Eye for Eye / Tunesmith (1990) - Tor double novel with Lloyd Biggle, Jr.
Magic Mirror (1999) - children's book
Robota (2003) - illustrated book
An Open Book (2004) - collection of poems
Ultimate Iron Man (2005) - comic book series
Red Prophet: The Tales Of Alvin Maker (2006) - comic book series
Wyrms (2006) - comic book series
The Space Boy (2007) - YA novel
Bully and the Beast (forthcoming) - YA novel
Posing as People (2004) - three one-act plays based on short stories by Card
Clap Hands and Sing - adapted by Scott Brick
Lifeloop - adapted by Aaron Johnston
Sepulchre of Songs - adapted by Emily Janice Card
Listen, Mom and Dad (1977)
A Storyteller in Zion (1993)
Works Based on Other Media
Getting Lost (2006)
Books on writing
Characters and Viewpoint (1988)
How to Write Science Fiction and Fantasy (1990)
Civilization Watch (formerly known as War Watch or World Watch) for the Rhinoceros Times (an independent Greensboro, NC newspaper)
Uncle Orson Reviews Everything for the Rhinoceros Times (an independent Greensboro, NC newspaper)
Hymns of the Heart for Meridian Magazine  (an LDS online magazine)
Ender's Game film (forthcoming)
Dogwalker (film) (forthcoming)
Advent Rising (June 2005) - a third-person shooter developed for Windows and Xbox by GlyphX Inc.
Advent Shadow (originally planned for April 2006) - a video game, developed for the Sony PSP by Majesco (canceled January 2006)
Alvin's World (forthcoming) - an MMORPG, being developed for Windows by eGenesis
The Great Snape Debate - a flip book discussing theories on Severus Snape of the Harry Potter series.
The Secret of Monkey Island - Card wrote the insults for the insult swordfighting section
The Dig - wrote dialogues
NeoHunter - wrote story
Orson Scott Card's Intergalactic Medicine Show - online magazine 
Stories of Strength (2005) ISBN 1-4116-5503-6 - charity anthologyI Am Legend (film) - Wrote the story for the short animated online film "Shelter" which was created as part of the movie's promotion.
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Brigham Young University and the University of Utah; he also spent a year in a Ph.D. program at the University of Notre Dame
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Copyright © 1998-2010 Roger A. Lee and History Guy Media; Last Modified: 08.06.10
"The History Guy" is a Registered Trademark.