Aug 22, 2022

Why I Love Work

“I need to work. It’s the one time my thoughts will cooperate with me.”

― Dan Groat, Monarchs and Mendicants

As a teenager whenever I misbehaved, which was quite often, I would get hands on my throat, or a belt or metal ruler across my butt and legs from my dad.  There were times I left the scene of a lashing with swollen, bloody legs.  And there were times when I thought my dad wanted to kill me. 

To escape the turmoil of life in a dysfunctional home, I fell in love with work.

I worked throughout my childhood from age 12 and up, even though it was still illegal to hire kids under 16 at the time in Texas. 

I worked at baseball concession stands as a cook and cashier, McDonalds, Subway, the grocery store as a shelf stocker, and at Lexon Medical as a file clerk. 

I routinely received employee of the month awards, and felt that I was a good, honest, hard worker, always looking for opportunities to make others’ jobs easier by going the extra mile.  

Work was and still is a form of therapy for me.

Though work may not be an economic necessity, work, and the inner vitality and value that comes with it, is and always has been a spiritual necessity. 

I love work.  

That said, I felt school work was mostly trite and trivial.  I graduated high school in the bottom 3% of my class with the equivalent of a D-average. I just didn’t care. I spent most of my days in class daydreaming of being elsewhere, as I was for the majority of my school experiences, a small boy who seemed to attract bullies and fights for whatever reason. 

Some of the bullies I still remember by name would come up to me and punch me in the face for no reason at all, other than to prove that I wouldn’t fight back.

Others would spit on me, or pick me up and run me into a wall or try to shove me into a locker, or trip me or push me to the ground.  

I did occasionally deserve the licking I got, as I had a quick wit and a sharp tongue.  But my insults against others were typically minimal, as they led to fights I’d almost always lose on account of my small size. 

That was, until I was introduced to boxing.

And then my love for work was channeled into a whole new path.

But that's a story for another day.

Aug 19, 2022

Increasing Power Thru Family Ties

"The family is a link to our past, and a bridge to our future.” – Alex Haley

I was born in Provo, Utah in December of 1976.  

My given name was Kent Burton, named after my father, Kent.

My parents were both young, newly married, and attending Brigham Young University in Provo Utah.  They were far from the home they grew up in, and from parents and family, most of whom still lived in Louisiana.

They never completed their college education, and I learned later in life that both struggled with severe depression.  Both contemplated suicide when I was a toddler, and my dad confessed in later years to nearly pulling it off with a loaded gun to his head up in the mountains.  

I’ll admit that I grew up in fear of my dad, and our relationship was often strained, if not explosive.  He believed in being firm, since he felt his dad, McKay Burton, was too soft. 

And although they were extremely devout in their LDS faith, my grandparents, McKay and Rene Burton and their 7 children and grandchildren have on the whole struggled with great tragedies in life, as their children or grandchildren have had numerous incidents of divorce, abuse, poverty, and crime.  My dad and us children were one of the exceptions, comparatively, in many respects, or so it may seem.. 

McKay and Rene Burton’s ancestors both have deep roots that trace back to the early members of the Church, including direct ties to Anson Call and Joseph Fielding.  Many of these early LDS church pioneers were beaten, tortured, raped and in some instances killed; almost all of the early pioneers had their property stolen from them, on account of mob violence and persecution against the early Church.  

My mom’s parents, Moses, who was Lebanese, and Barbara who was mostly Scottish, were much more firm and disciplined with their children.  Each of their 6 children have had relative success and happiness in their lives.

Many of Moses’ ancestors, the Attayas and the Salibees, fled from Lebanon due to Muslim persecution and hostility against them due to their Christian faith. 

McKay Burton
May 21, 1924 ~ May 24, 2021 (age 97)

Moses Attaya
NOVEMBER 7, 1922 – JUNE 4, 2019 (age 96)

Both of my grandfathers were named after prophets. McKay being named after latter-day prophet David O. McKay, a close friend of the family when he was young, and Moses being named after the ancient prophet who helped deliver Israel from slavery in Egypt.

They both fought in World War II as pilots and suffered through the great depression in their youth. Both were very strong in their Christian faith, and believed in and fought for the freedoms it would seem we Americans take for granted today. I believe their generation was and is the greatest generation our country has ever seen.

On both sides of my family, my LDS-Christian father’s side, and my Methodist-Christian mother’s side, fleeing cruel and unfair opposition (even opposition sponsored by the government) is in our roots.

And so, my opinion of the government and its overbearing role in people’s lives - especially when imposing itself unfairly upon individual rights, or freedoms of worship or speech or commerce, isn’t very favorable. 

For many more reasons which I’ll elaborate on in more detail later on, besides just my own upbringing and family history, I’m a Christian and a conservative libertarian.

This conservative libertarianism value system for me is defined as one who believes in the advocacy of economic and legal principles such as fiscal discipline, respect for contracts, defense of private property and free markets; fewer laws banning minor crimes, and the traditional conservative stress on self-help and freedom of choice under a laissez-faire and economically liberal capitalist society with social tenets such as the importance of religion and the value of religious morality through a framework of limited, constitutional, representative government.

Always remember that there is great strength in knowing our ancestors and great power in honoring the legacy of our forefathers.

Aug 18, 2022

Keep Fighting

"Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all." - Dale Carnegie

I’ve been beaten, broke, and bankrupt.

As a teenager, I ran away from home and for a while I lived out of my car, and ate out of trash cans.

I was raised in fear, living in an abusive home with a dad that would beat, choke and threaten me.

I’ve been diagnosed as manic with severe depression, and told by the professionals that I would be on lithium and other hard-core medication’s for the rest of my life.

I dropped out of high school for a year before graduating in the bottom 3% of my class with mostly D’s.

I’ve lost a best friend to suicide.

I dated 823 girls over a near 10-year period in an attempt to find the one I was to marry and raise a family with, having my heart broken dozens of times in the process. 


I’ve been down to my last $3.87 just days before Christmas with a wife and a baby girl and no presents to give under the tree.

I’ve lost millions of dollars in bad investments involving frauds and crooks.

And I’ve made it back again.

Fast forward to today. 

I graduated from Brigham Young University with a degree in Business and Management Information Systems shortly after completing a 2-year mission sharing my testimony of  the gospel to the good people in New Jersey.

I have a supportive and loving wife and four amazing children, ages 7-12.

Although I still have hard days and feel at times weighed down, I’m not on any antidepressants. 

I’ve also obtained some measure of wealth.

My point in sharing this is that it doesn’t matter where you come from, or what you’ve done, or how many times you’ve failed.  

There’s always hope.

The sun really does come out tomorrow if we move forward in faith.

Keep Fighting.

Aug 12, 2022

Corruption, Abuse of Power, and More Fake News and Defamation from a Government Agency

 In 2019, my wife and I were arrested in front of our four children, without a warrant, on 23 fabricated, trumped-up felony charges, that were all dismissed as being without any probable cause.

The Court examined all of the evidence against us, and ruled that we had committed no crime whatsoever.  

The judge actually reprimanded the prosecutor for bringing such a "ridiculous" case to her courtroom, and she further stated that this was the "worst" offence by a government agency she'd seen "in all [her] years as a judge", as she put it.

There was no probable cause of our arrest, and we were properly released.

During my time in jail, I asked the officers why they had arrested us.  

"Who had we ever wronged?" I asked.

"You should have settled with [defendant]" the officer told me.  

The reality is that we had settled with the defendant, but had to sue them again for their not abiding by the terms of our settlement agreement.

The alleged "victims" cited by the officers of the law were none other than defendants in several civil lawsuits.  

In each of these lawsuits, we were the Plaintiffs, suing these people for bad conduct and damages they had caused us.  

Not the other way around.

But our adversaries were not having much success with defending our claims against them in the civil courts. 

So they appealed to several law enforcement agencies, including the Mesa and Chandler police as well as the Attorney General.  They even tried to get my Real Estate Brokers license revoked by filing a complaint against my license.  

But each of these government agencies correctly concluded and told our adversaries that the matter was/is a civil matter, to be dealt with in the civil courts.

But then, one agency known as the Department of Public Safety ("DPS) with personal ties to one of the defendants we were suing was willing to seek to turn our civil dispute into a criminal case against my wife and me.

Six weeks after the wrongful arrest my wife and I endured, and after the Court found and ruled that there was no probable cause for any of the alleged crimes we were accused of by the prosecutor and the DPS, the DPS decided to "get back" at us by writing several completely untrue statements about my wife and me on their government press-release website. 

While it's true that we were wrongfully arrested for the charges DPS accused us of, they fail to accurately report that there was no warrant for the arrest, and that all of the charges were thrown out by the Court (see below):

In spite of what has been inaccurately reported by our adversaries and DPS - and by extension the press and other media outlets that picked up on the inaccurate story - we are honest and we do what we agreed to do in each of our contracts with which we are bound by. 

There is absolutely no legitimate finding of fact, or any basis of truth whatsoever for any of the things this corrupt DPS has accused us of. 

The Arizona DPS is an agency with a very long list of internal corruption and internal arrests due to officer misconduct. 

In fact, during the time of our wrongful arrest, the DPS website reported more internal arrests against its own corrupt agents than they even had against any external/public wrongdoers, suggesting a very serious and systemic corruption within the DPS.

(A small sampling of the DPS's long list of corruption and criminal acts are here - just 5 examples 12, 3, 4, 5.)

Although Colonel Frank Milstead of DPS has stated that “Every employee with the Department is held to the highest standards and levels of public trust. This department will not accept any employee’s breach of that trust and will take swift action to ensure those employees are dealt with appropriately,” that doesn't appear to be the case with the DPS agent assigned to investigate our case who has lied several times under oath and has sought to destroy our reputation by posting the knowingly false statements about us online.

Although we may rub people the wrong way with our personalities or the conservative and religious views we hold to, or the fact that we occasionally have to sue bad businesses for their misconduct or breaches against us, we have always sought to be honest and fair in all of our dealings with our fellowmen. 

We hope and pray that in time DPS will do what their own attorney advised them to do: take down the knowingly-inaccurate post.  

We also hope for relief from the Courts as the wrongs we've suffered by having our reputation damaged by the lies spewed by an overzealous DPS officer has been emotionally and financially devastating to our family.