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Why God allows evil



I’ve been seeking to learn why it is God, our Creator, allows so much evil. It is a perplexing question.

I suppose I should start with full disclosure. I’m not a pastor, minister, or priest. Nor am I a theologian. Actually, I’m just one of you! You and I, those who are curious. Being curious is probably a good thing even at my age – beyond-seven-decades. I believe there is God. Also that He created all that is. With that as a foundation, let’s get back to evil.

As long as there have been two or more humans on this planet, there has been evil. Let’s face it. At the outset, Adam and Eve were given but one rule. It seems they took very little time breaking that one rule. Some time later they gave birth to two sons. One of those sons murdered the other.

So evil has clearly always been an ingredient of human behavior. Seems odd, doesn’t it? Countless humans over the centuries have asked, “How could a God who created us and who loves us saddle us with so much evil?”

We look about and observe a plethora of evil human behavior. As evidence, we see greed, pride, lies, deception, theft, corruption, and lewd conduct. Human history seethes with examples. So does our present day. Examples abound!

But getting back to the perplexing question. Why so much evil? In our effort to unravel that ‘why so much evil’ question, we will need to examine three topics: the nature of God, the ingredients of love, and God’s gift of free will. All of this will clearly be illustrated within an ancient narrative story.

We could begin with that story. But first, a quick review of a couple of things we understand to be true about God. He created us. He loves us. He wants us to be with Him in eternity. There is more, of course. But one characteristic in particular is relevant to our discussion here: He is omniscient. Knowing all makes perfect sense once we’ve established that He created all.

But, given that He knows all, doesn’t that mean that He knows we humans will do evil things? And if He knows the evil we will do, why does He not prevent us from doing so?

This is a good time to turn to the story. I particularly like this narrative because it explains and clarifies so much. Let’s meet Joseph.

This Joseph is not the spouse of Mary who gave birth to Jesus. No, we must go all the way back to the book of Genesis to meet this Joseph. This Joseph is the son of Jacob, who was the son of Isaac. That makes this Joseph the grandson of Abraham.

The story is an early Biblical example of human evil. Joseph’s brothers were jealous and hated him. So they sold Joseph, Jacob’s favored son, to traders headed for Egypt. Eventually, Joseph was sold to an officer of the Pharaoh.

Evil behavior! And this while God, knowing all, was looking on. This seems contrary to what we humans think we know about God. Much of our Sunday-school teaching tends to focus on another characteristic about “Our Father who art in Heaven.” That characteristic is love. So let’s focus now on love.

Over the years – my years, that is — I have given no small amount of thought to the topic of love. In brief, what I came up with is this. First, love is a gift. It’s God’s gift to us. But it also is our gift to other humans.

Now, the most essential characteristic of love – whether that from God or that from humans – is that it is incomplete, it cannot and will not survive, without being returned. That “return loop” is called reciprocity.

Think of an elongated oval. Imagine this egg-shaped figure – also called elliptical – having embedded arrows. One arrow is outbound love destined for a recipient. Once it reaches its target, the recipient has choices. Receive or reject. Retain or return. If we decide to receive and return love, the arrow now travels along that same oval back to the source of the gift. That’s reciprocity.

Soon we’ll return to our story of Joseph whose life as a servant of the Pharaoh has placed the young lad in a position of great responsibility. Joseph has become the Pharaoh’s highest officer with command of both the royal household and the entire country of Egypt. But first let’s get back for now to love and that oval of reciprocity.

Once the gift of love has been sent, received, and returned, we can see that the process is complete. Had the gift been rejected, or even received but simply retained like a box on a closet shelf, the cycle is incomplete. Without reciprocity, then, love withers and dies like a plant without water.

But now we come to the most important point. And it is this point which explains why it is God allows evil to exist.

We have said that once the gift of love reaches its target, the recipient has choices. Receive or reject. Retain or return. Choices! We call these choices free will.

When God created humans, He gave them – and each of us – free will. Some theologians are still looking for those words in the Bible. But what they should be looking for is not the word. Rather, free will is found in Genesis as action.

Our most distant parents, remember, were given that one rule in the Garden of Eden. They were not to eat the fruit of one particular tree. But they did so. They chose to eat that fruit. That “choice” was possible only because they had free will.

And why were they, and we, given that “choice” to do or not do? Now we are approaching the answer to our dilemma: the why of evil. The answer is found within our search for the nature of love. Choices.

It is free will that allows us to receive or reject, retain or return. And our Creator understood the risk. He gave us free will. But He recognized we might choose reject and retain rather than receive and return. Why did He take that risk?

We must think of free will in binary terms. It is either free or not free. It cannot be both. Our Lord knew that. So now, let’s return to thinking about the nature of love.

The only way God’s love for His humans can be complete is if we choose to accept, receive, and return that love. And the only way that can happen is for us to have the freedom to choose. Hence, free will.

Human history is chock full of examples of human free will gone awry!

Now we’ll examine one more crucially important distinction. Earlier we noted that God is omniscient. But knowing is not the same as causing. It is also not the same as allowing. Actually, I’m convinced that God’s knowing often causes Him no small amount of agony. After all, which of us would enjoy knowing ahead of time and with absolute certainty that something horribly tragic is about to happen?

Imagine watching your son, just beyond the age of toddler. He’s reaching for a pot of boiling water on the stove. You know what is about to happen. In my book Eternity, I wrote:

“And you watch. But you do not move. Every muscle and nerve in your body twitches then knots itself into a searing, painful mass of energy. Still you don’t interfere because you gave your son free will. And what seconds ago was Jeremy’s inquisitive little face is now …. Your knowledge has just turned to agony. Gut-wrenching, nauseating agony.”

So, returning to our story of Joseph – his brothers do evil, sell him as slave. All the while our Lord God knew in advance what was to happen. He knew also that He would not intervene in the action thus negating free will.

So, what did He do instead? He used their evil deed to the ultimate benefit of others. How did this play out?

Many years after their evil deed, Joseph’s brothers find themselves standing before the Pharaoh’s mightiest officer. Notice what follows:

“I am Joseph, your brother,” he said, “the one you sold into Egypt! And now, do not be distressed or angry with yourselves that you sold me into this place, because it was to save lives that God sent me before you. For the famine has covered the land these two years, and there will be five more years without plowing or harvesting. God sent me before you to preserve you as a remnant on the earth and to save your lives by a great deliverance. Therefore, it was not you who sent me here, but God, who has made me a father to Pharaoh—lord of all his household and ruler over all the land of Egypt.” (Genesis 45)

And near the end of the story, following the death of Jacob (also called Israel), the brothers fear Joseph will seek revenge for their misdeed. But Joseph quells their fear:

“As for you, what you intended against me for evil, God intended for good, in order to accomplish a day like this—to preserve the lives of many people.” (Genesis 50)

And now we can return to the perplexing question which launched this venture.

We have learned that God loves us. But we have also learned that His love can reach fruition, become complete, only if we choose to receive it, accept it, and return it. We also discovered that such a choice is an available option to all humans only because of yet another of God’s gifts. Free will.

Finally, when we abuse free will with our misdeeds, God may use our evil to achieve His own goal. His goal? The greater good – the salvation of all humans who choose to receive and return His gift of love.

We must not conclude this reflection on the why of evil, however, without this final clarification. It is important for us to recognize the distinction between the words so that and the word and. Our Creator, our Lord, does not allow evil so that He might use it. So that implies purpose. This could lead us to believe that He wants us to engage in evil. He clearly does not wish us to do evil. Rather, He allows freedom of choice, and He may use our flawed choices and their consequences to bring about a greater good. Let us recognize: so that implies intent while and does not do so.

And that, dear readers, is my answer to this perplexing question.

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The absolute hope and promise of Christmas



Dear Editor,

Christmas once again; when we joyfully celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. Who is He? Isaiah 9:6 proclaims, “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given… and his name shall be called… The mighty God, The heavenly Father…”. John 1:1 says, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” Verse 14 says, “And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us… the only begotten of the Father…” Why? God had to become flesh to die! He had to shed His own blood! This is the price God Himself set for our redemption/salvation; and His being willing to pay that price resulted in the birth of the Christ Child at Christmas! Called Immanuel, meaning “God with us”!

Being known to utter amazing and profound things concerning you and me; it seems He was speaking from His heart; the heart of God, to our hearts! Saying (John 10:10), “…I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” Saying, in effect, He came to offer the remedy to the scourge and surety of death! The natural life, suffering death and dying, is both fleeting and temporary. Therefore, Jesus is not speaking of it here. Rather, He is saying He came to give us something we didn’t/don’t already have: Life (never-ending)! The free gift of God revealed in Romans 6:23; Therefore, we will have life forever!

As to “abundantly”, abundant means “existing in plentiful supply; abounding.” An adjective, it here describes the subject “the new life!” We do have spiritual and other blessings in this life, but it here seems opposed to prosperity; for prosperity means “being successful, flourishing, material well-being.” Maybe a care and problem-free life now. Therefore, “abundantly” is speaking to the subject: eternal life, not of “more of”, “better than” or even happiness in this temporal life. Hence, “abundantly” is referring to the plentiful, abounding supply of what we don’t have in the now. It’s what He came to give us: eternal life!

Knowing of our pain, struggles and sorrows, Jesus said in Matthew 11: 28-29, “Come unto me… and I will give you rest… rest unto your souls.” Amazingly, in John 16:33, He said, “…in this world ye shall have tribulation, but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” Also, saying in Revelation 2:9, “I know thy works, tribulation and poverty, but thou art rich!” The more abundant life is achieved in this life in part only, however, in the fact that he will never leave or forsake us. Thus our greatest happiness, glory and joy is in our walk and talk with Him!

Jesus said (John 1o:25-26), “I am the resurrection and the life; he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live, and… shall never die.” In effect, guaranteeing to those who believe, are saved/born again, the abundant, never-ending life! Saying in John 14:2-3; “I go to prepare a place for you… I will come again and receive you unto myself…”

Clearly a “done deal”; The sealing of the deal!

Forever in the place He is preparing, an abundant life guaranteed by our eternal guarantor Jesus Christ, being sealed in His blood!

This then, is the absolute and sure Hope and Promise of Christmas!

Rev. Jess Shifflett
Front Royal, Virginia

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historically speaking

As surprising as this may sound, presidents behaving badly is not new. President Trump is just the latest. Politicians have been skirting the law since the creation of politicians. This in no way condones bad behavior, yet if every conversation of every president was investigated, I believe we would be shocked at what we learned.

Trump’s Ukraine conversation in some ways is not unlike when President Obama was overheard telling the Russian President that he could be more flexible with missile defense after his reelection. Obama’s conversation was not illegal, but may walk a moral line. As for Trump, Congress will have to determine if the President’s conversation is an impeachable offense, but what may end up hurting Trump even more is a possible cover-up of a complaint.

We have seen before where the cove up is worse than the crime for presidents. Richard Nixon had no part in the Watergate burglary, his crime was the cover up after the fact. With this same president, we also saw his downfall come because of a whistleblower, who went by the code name Deep Throat. Nixon and Deep Throat are responsible for the most famous presidential take-down, but they are not the only one. The 1912 election saw the take-down of President Howard W. Taft by whistleblower Louis Gavis.

In 1908, President Theodore Roosevelt decided not to run for his own second term and instead handpicked his successor. Taft was completely qualified for the office and Roosevelt liked his progressive ideology, but even more he liked Taft’s lack of personality that would not outshine Roosevelt himself. Roosevelt might be stepping down, but he did not intend to give up control. It turned out that Taft would be his own man, to the frustration of Roosevelt, and one issue in particular forced Roosevelt to return from his African safari to block Taft’s nomination for a second term. This incident became known as the Ballinger-Pinchot Affair.

When Taft took over the White House, one of his appointment changes was replacing James Garfield, son of the late president, as Secretary of the Interior with Richard Ballinger. Roosevelt and his friend Gifford Pinchot, head of the U.S. Forest Service, were upset with the appointment. They feared Ballinger would not follow through with the conservation policies they had enacted. The two men were right to fear Ballinger. Once in office, he opened up federal land for commercial use.

Louis Gavis ran the Portland field office of the U.S. Forest Service. He came to suspect Ballinger was illegally selling rich coal lands in Alaska to private companies. He brought his suspicions to Pinchot, who suggested Gavis present his findings to President Taft. When Taft questioned Ballinger, he responded with a 730-page defense of his practices. Taft only took a week to investigate the charges, including reading Ballinger’s response, and cleared Ballinger of all charges. Taft followed up his investigation by firing Gavis for insubordination.

In retaliation Gavis went to Collier’s Magazine and gave his account. The story was so sensational that Congress called a hearing to look into the matter. Though Ballinger would be cleared by the hearing, the investigation turned up other improprieties. It proved that Taft was trying to protect Ballinger by firing Gavis. The investigation showed that a letter Taft circulated, claiming he wrote it before the firing of Gavis, was actually written after the fact and was written by Ballinger’s attorney.

Finally, during the trial Gifford Pinchot testified against Ballinger. When the trial was over, he too was removed from his position by the Taft Administration. Roosevelt was so incensed that it was one of the reasons he decided to challenge Taft for the Republican ticket in 1912. When Taft was successful in retaining the Republican nomination, Roosevelt and the progressive members of his party broke away to form the Bull Moose Party. With the Republicans split, the Democrats were able to elect their candidate for only the second time in fifty-six years.

Dr. James Finck is an Associate Professor of History at the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma and Chair of the Oklahoma Civil War Symposium. Follow Historically Speaking at or Facebook at @jamesWfinck.

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New mayor should take lead in altering proposal to interfere with the work of local journalists



With the recent swearing-in of Eugene Tewalt as Mayor of the Town of Front Royal, we at the Royal Examiner trust that he will turn his attention immediately to a misguided public relations draft proposal that would, if enacted, be a blue print to managing the way local reporters do their jobs.

Todd Jones, whose job description is the town’s “Information Technology Director,” earlier this month put forward a four-part public relations program that included a naive proposal that would bar area journalists from seeking information directly from council members or town officials. In other words, reporters would be required to ask questions through his office and answers would be managed to conform with public policy.

In effect, this would be a way of muzzling the press, a plan doomed to failure before getting off the ground. Reporters would develop their sources anyway, and work around any such short-sighted rule. It isn’t that this ploy has not been attempted many times over the years by public officials in various places.

Hopefully the Town’s elected officials will not allow ‘Taps’ to be blown for open media access to them and their appointed officials as part of a new ‘Communications’ strategy being developed under the impetus of now Interim Town Manager Matt Tederick. Royal Examiner File Photo Veterans Day 2019

Such efforts may reflect ignorance of the way the media works and its overall responsibility of relating the thought processes of public officials to the public they serve. A worst-case scenario for the more suspicious would be a desire to shield those officials from revealing too much about their motives and thought processes.

What is an “information technology director” anyway? There’s nothing in that title that pertains to press and media relations, never mind telling local reporters and editors how to do their jobs. In Front Royal, the community development and tourist information offices are pretty effective, so taking those out of the equation, what does this leave our “information technology director” to do?

The Chamber of Commerce does a good job of encouraging new business; and the revamped Economic Development Authority (EDA) Board of Directors and Administrative staff seem to be working hard at business recruitment and retention under trying circumstances. There are other business-promoting groups who round out that part of the local economy, and the Front Royal Police Department continues to do nice work of public relations in the law enforcement area.

While Jones’ initial Communications Policy draft demonstrated a clear lack of knowledge of the media’s responsibilities, the periodic “Town Hall” meetings he proposes would be a plus, as would assuring that Town departmental staffs present a consistent and accurate response to public inquiries about how Town services work and can best be accessed to the public’s benefit.

Hopefully Jones will follow up his admission to Royal Examiner’s Roger Bianchini when confronted about the media aspect of his proposal with a substantive alteration of his original draft as it applies to the media and its work. Jones’ admission appeared to be a sudden realization that there is a substantive difference between the communications lines between public officials and the press on the one hand, and that between Town staffs and the public as to how Town services work and are accessed.

And if Jones doesn’t make that adjustment to his proposal, it will be up to the town council under the leadership of our new mayor to see that such a change is made that will not set up unjustified barriers between the press, working on the public’s behalf, and the community’s elected and appointed policy makers.

Malcolm Barr Sr., our correspondent, dons his 50-year-old strike placard. Photo/Roger Bianchini

(Malcolm Barr Sr. of Rockland has spent 70 of his 86 years as a local and national reporter, including with the Associated Press, in three countries, including a 25-year stint as a public affairs manager and officer in three federal government departments in Washington, D.C. During his 18 years in Warren County, he has contributed to news coverage by the Warren Sentinel, the Warren County Report, the Royal Examiner, and occasional “Opinion” pieces to the Northern Virginia Daily.)

Outline for Town communications policy raises questions


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Impeach?  Is it Political?



Image by Wynn Pointaux from Pixabay

Is impeachment a political process, or is it a legal proceeding?  This is not solely an academic question.  At this moment in our Nation’s history, how we answer this question is pivotal to our future. Why?

It is pivotal because our current House of Representatives is engaged in an impeachment action against the current President.  House leadership has mischaracterized these proceedings as purely a political process.  Having done so, they claim no obligation to adhere to the rule of law.  This is the cornerstone of their “rules” for conducting the ongoing impeachment.

But, is impeachment a political process?  How did House leadership arrive at that conclusion?  I shall leave it to the House to reveal its source for its “political process” claim.

The second question – is impeachment a legal proceeding – is not at all difficult to answer.

Let’s trace its source.  “This Constitution … shall be the supreme Law of the Land…”  This (Article. VI.) establishes that our Constitution is law.  Our Constitution is law!

Within that LAW (preceding Article VI) there are three specific references to impeachment These include:

* “The House of Representatives shall have the sole power of impeachment.”

* “The Senate shall have the sole power to try all Impeachments.”

* “The President … shall be removed from Office … on impeachment for and conviction of….”

This is what House Democrats wish our Nation to ignore.  Impeachment is Law!  It is not a political process.

Given that fact, the present impeachment action must adhere to that law.   When an impeachment does not adhere to that law, the impeachment is unlawful.

Hence, the Senate (Upper Chamber) has the obligation to issue the House a cease and desist order (stop illegal activity).   In the absence of such a cease and desist order, the Senate itself becomes an agent in an illegal activity.

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Front Royal Town Manager: Matthew Tederick’s Peyton Places



I must be honest with you, the television series “Peyton Place” was years before my time. In fact, I did not know the series was based on a movie from the middle 50s until a few days ago.

But it is amazing what one can find these days with a few calls and very basic searches on Google, to include what the actual “Peyton Place” series was about – I don’t think I would have watched.

We get enough of the real “scandalous secrets” here in Front Royal. Look at the past year!

That is the case with this article “Matthew Tederick’s Peyton Places.” I say “Places” due to the multitude of potential connections between the address of 100 Peyton Street and Matthew Tederick, along with other connections between Matthew Tederick and other firms he represents in some form.

It is like a crime scene you see in a bad movie with a wall full of pictures and strings attempting to connect the dots to who done what.

For this case, everything below is double sourced based on calls to officials or from official websites. In some cases, supporting Internet data is included to substantiate official information, i.e., this could include company websites or people’s public websites as examples.

This is all publicly available information which anyone has access to if they wish to search – to include our own Town Council.

Matt Tederick takes over as Front Royal’s Interim Mayor in early June. Royal Examiner File Photos/Roger Bianchini

In late May 2019, Matthew Tederick was selected from a pool (not likely) of candidates by the Town Council to fill the empty Mayoral seat due to unforeseen circumstances which need not be addressed in this article. I am not condemning the Council for attempting to quickly remedy the vacancy; however, due diligence is always best conducted at the time of action and very difficult after the fact.

When anyone is selected to a position of this nature, elected or in this case “placed,” I would assume that individuals would be required to complete a mandatory Conflict of Interest (COI) and Ethics statement – a requirement by the State of Virginia.

First question I have of the Town Council or responsible party, did Matthew Tederick complete a statement for both positions and/or did he make a statement that the first COI document was still accurate when he became Acting Town Manager? You would think/hope so.

A COI declaration is very well covered in Virginia by the following “Virginia Conflict of Interest and Ethics Advisory Council STATE AND LOCAL STATEMENT OF ECONOMIC INTERESTS issued December 2018. There are examples available for anyone to review online as well.

These Conflict of Interest statements help to ensure disclosure of any potential conflict of interest to both parties, as well as documenting other items that may cause potential issues later on. In simple terms, it alerts both parties on where one should step carefully – or not step.

Interim Town Manager Matt Tederick on the job at November work session.

Under “Instructions” it states:  “State and local officers and employees required to file pursuant to 2.2-3114, 2.2-3115 or 2.2-3116, or as designated by their local governing body are REQUIRED to complete and file the Statement of Economic Interests as a condition to assuming office, and then annually while serving as an officer or employee.”

My second question is rather simple, did Matthew Tederick accurately portray his total participation in the various firms he serves as a President, or in other roles, i.e., Registered Agent. Not sure, but I doubt he could recite today all the firms he serves in either of those capacities without a cheat sheet or the disclosure of other matters.

If the examples from the Internet are accurate, Matthew Tederick would be required to provide the following:

On the first page he is required to sign, he is required to identify the address for his business.

Schedule A: Disclose all business which you or a member of your immediate family is an officer or director and receives …

Schedule D: Business Interests and Rental Property. Note that Business Interests and Rental Property are likely separate tables.

Schedule E: Real Estate

Not having a copy of the document that Matthew Tederick should have completed when he became Interim Mayor in front of me – I hope the town had him complete one, as it appears they skipped many other common sense requirements and just ran full-speed over others for both the Interim Mayor and/or Interim Town Manager positions – puts me at a slight disadvantage.

A question I have – who is responsible within town management to ensure the accuracy of the material Matthew Tederick provided. I know it is not the public.

Why have a form submitted if no one bothers to check the accuracy of the information provided?

It would be very compelling for someone to look at what he may have included in that document, if completed, against the information provided below.

As a matter of fact, the LLC that Front Royal may be paying Matthew Tederick by (which he requested when he assumed the position of Acting Town Manager and still refuses to publicly state the name of the LLC) MUST be included as an LLC in that Conflict of Interest/Financial Disclosure statement. The reason it must be stated – LLC’s must pay for services to an LLC member or to a potential service provided activity which means he must have a position within that LLC. To be paid by an LLC, Matthew Tederick must be the owner, a partner or act as the Registered Agent – all positions that could be influenced by activities dealing with the Town of Front Royal. It would be also important to determine if the LLC is a wholly owned LLC or another form of an LLC, and his role in that LLC, something the Town SHOULD HAVE DONE PRIOR to any financial agreement with this LLC and Matthew Tederick.

An LLC is not a person – it is an entity that pays a member or a person for services. Hence, it would be interesting to identify his position/role in that LLC. Is he the sole owner or a partner? – It matters from an IRS perspective. I would say based on what I have collected, that it is a wholly owned LLC. Again, this is not a tax issue but rather a “did we contract out the current Acting Town Manager” position to an LLC? It’s rather simple. If so, then the LLC must be made public and documented on the COI, per the IRS agent I contacted.

Also, why hide the LLC? The LLC is not a bank or a financial institution. For the reason of this arrangement, I would say it is a wholly-owned LLC by Matthew Tederick – if so, again, why hide it?

Now, I will admit that sometimes people forget items, misspell words or just ignore items because it takes time to correct. So, one or two missteps could be accepted, but I would take my time to ensure it was accurate if I was completing this legal form.

However, if that is the case in most, or many, of the below, then I am just as concerned to his lack of attention to detail, as I would be to his honesty. Both are critical in either the Mayor or Town Manager’s position. Remember the below information is from official sites, available company information, etc.

To make it somewhat simple to follow, I have included a table that shows LLCs or Incorporated entities in the left column, the status of the firm today as stated by the official Virginia SSC filing office in the next column to include the Filing Number, the middle column identified the address and status along with the DUNS number if available, and the last two columns provide connections to his home address or to the 100 Peyton Street address to which he sold to Dollar House LLC (remember that name when you see the table) with that entity if it could be located. The last column identifies Matthew Tederick’s position with that firm. As many of the below do not have company websites, positions like President or Owner can be difficult to ascertain.

Note that the definition for a Registered Agent and what a DUNS number is provided immediately after the table due to its length, but one should not understate its importance as to how a State deals with an LLC or firm. All of this information is available for the general public to view.

Key phrases or specific words used for these searches included:
-Matthew Tederick
-Matt Tederick
-Matthew A Tederick
-Tederick Front Royal
-100 Peyton Street
-21 Edgewood St.
-21 Edgewater St. (address used in 100 Peyton St. sale)
-And names of firms identified in my searches
-DUNS and (any firm identified, addresses identified or the name Tederick)
-SCC Filings Virginia




status from official Web Site

what is/was DUNS #


(based on the internet)

(appointment date)

Dollar House LLC Active




100 Peyton Matthew Tederick

Registered Agent

Gentle Knight Solutions LLC Active

(Fees in Delq 2019)




100 Peyton Matthew Tederick

Registered Agent

Tederick Miller Investments LLC Active


Shows as Tederick Miller Investments

Shows as Miller Tederick as Out of Business


No Tederick Miller shown

16 Chester Matthew Tederick

Registered Agent

Information Intelligence & Operations LLC Active


No matches


100 Peyton

Also shows 21 Edgewood

Mathew Tederick

Registered Agent

Victory Communications LLC Active


Active 100 Peyton
Blessing Gods Way LLC Active




21 Edgewood
Trinity Home Investments LLC Active


Active 100 Peyton
Media Bridge LLC Active


Active Spotsylvania Matthew Tederick

Registered Agent

1839 Capital LLC Active


Not Listed Alexandria VA Matthew Tederick

Listed as President

Redneck Political Alliance Active


Not Listed Matthew Tederick


GTS Direct LLC

(does lobbying strategies and voter modeling)



Active 100 Peyton Website states that

Wealth Management is

Registered Agent (which is


Stronghold of Virginia LLC Purged




100 Peyton Matthew Tederick

Registered Agent

Tederick Real Estate LLC Active


No matches Shows 29 Edgemont by no such address – believed to be typo for 29 Edgewood Matthew Tederick

Registered Agent

Child Care Property Developers LLC Purged




Shows 100 Peyton St

21 Edgewood Matthew Tederick

Registered Agent

Wealth Management Inc Active


Not shown as Wealth Management Inc or LLC  – shows link to  Dominion Financial 100 Peyton Matthew Tederick

President and

Registered Agent

Dominion Financial Services LLC A Website says

Tederick President

(See above under

Wealth Management)

Rexx Group LLC Auto Canx by State


No matches 100 Peyton Matthew Tederick

Registered Agent

Patriots Alliance

Or Patriots Political Alliance

Old name as Patriots Alliance Active


100 Peyton
Matthew Tederick Not shown Out of Business

Was 149704280 Alternate name LPL Financial Services

100 Peyton
Shenandoah Valley Leadership Pac, Inc., (Pri) DUNS #1 Purged by State


Not listed 100 Peyton Matthew Tederick

Registered Agent

Shenandoah Valley Leadership Pac, Inc., (Pri)  DUNS #2 Purged by Sate


Not Listed Not listed Matthew Tederick

Registered Agent

A/O NOV 2019

What is a Registered Agent (RA) by legal terms?

“A Registered Agent is a responsible party who is located in the same state in which a business entity was established and who is designated to receive service of process notices, correspondence from that state’s Secretary of State and other official government notifications, usually tax forms and notice of law suits – on behalf of the corporation or LLC. The state where the business is registered needs to know it has a contact person for the business in the state during business hours (thus, PO Boxes are not acceptable for registered agents). If you don’t have a physical location in that state, the requirement is especially urgent that the business have a registered agent to accept document on the firm’s behalf.”

What is a DUNS Number?

“The DUNS Number is linked to your company’s business credit profile with D&B; which is used by lenders, suppliers and potential business partners to help determine if a company is creditworthy and/or financially stable. One important thing to note is your company is not issued a DUNS Number when you apply for an EIN.” An EIN number is what the IRS uses, as well as bank/financial institutions to show a business entity for tracking purposes.

I would say based on the statement of what a Registered Agent is responsible for, one could rationally make a statement that the RA acts as an agent for the LLC or firm and therefore would be considered a member of that entity for a specific reason. Again, I use the term a member of an entity for the following reason: If an individual is a member of LLC (wholly owned or partnership), one would assume that it should be included on any COI paperwork as a potential conflict of interest. That would include the employed Town Manager.

IF, Matthew Tederick now states that he was unaware of the fact he was still acting as a Registered Agent of an active firm as identified by the State, or that he thought the firm was no longer operational for a lack of a better term, then again my earlier comment regarding a total lack of attention to detail should concern all.

Is that the person this town needs in a position responsible for the management of millions of dollars on a weekly basis? I would say, be careful – who needs another missing or misplaced $17 million dollars unaccounted for?

Below is a screen capture of what the State of Virginia provides those doing searches on a firm’s status. It provides the firms name, entity number and if it is still active or not. For this example, I used the term “Tederick Real Estate”, since Tederick Real Estate owns the home adjacent to his home address.

With all the data provided above to include the definitions, let’s now take a look at just three examples, as there are numerous, that hopefully alert you, as it did me, as to why I do not believe Matthew Tederick is the right person leading the day-to-day activities of this fine town.

Those include 1839 Capital LLC, Dollar House LLC, and the address 100 Peyton Street located in Front Royal.

For our first example let’s look at 1839 Capital. After he agreed to become Interim Mayor, the firm 1839 Capital filed the documentation you see below. It shows a start date of July 2019 with Matthew Tederick as the President. The website for 1839 Capital also shows Matthew Tederick as President with a location of Alexandria. What specifically does the form state is the business expertise for this firm? A “Global Investment Firm” with emphasis on “Commercial Real Estate” per the submitted form and the website. As I stated in my first article published November 11th in the Royal Examiner. It was surprising that Matthew Tederick knew so little about how to deal with the Crooked Run West request when he stated in his 1839 Capital bio as President the following:

“Utilizing his governmental, real estate, and investment knowledge, Matthew Tederick developed a thriving business solving complex problems for national residential and commercial construction entitles … In many cases, Matthew Tederick led the entitlement team consisting of attorneys, engineers, and architects in order to accomplish client objectives. Matthew Tederick spearheaded over 35 projects ranging from single parcel to 1,500 acres, mixed use (residential, commercial, industrial, institutional) developments.”

I have heard that Matthew Tederick signed a statement regarding the fact he will devote full time and effort to the performance of the Town Manager’s duties only. Does that mean his other business-related activities are put on hold? I wonder what firms like 1839 Capital will do without their President.

For my second example let’s look at Dollar House LLC. Dollar House, per the VA SSC filing, started in January 2004 with Matthew Tederick as the Registered Agent using the address 100 Peyton St. I am not sure if he holds any additional positions within the LLC. Remember, the owner of an LLC may also serve as the Registered Agent if they are the sole individual associated with the LLC.

Although I could find information on Dollar House from official websites and one additional website named which confirmed Matthew Tederick as the Registered Agent, there is NO Dollar House LLC website which will allow the reader to find out any specifics as to its owner, etc.

Dollar House LLC per Warren County, shows that Dollar House owns two properties within the county. The first being 0 Peyton which was purchased from Matthew and Susan Tederick on June 25th with Dollar House using the address of 21 Edgewater St., and the second property, being adjacent to 0 Peyton St, being 100 Peyton St., which was also purchased June 25th from Matthew and Susan Tederick. Again, the address used by Dollar House is 21 Edgewater St.

A strange condescendence possibly, but the address provided for Dollar House in Front Royal is incorrect, as there is no 21 Edgewater St. in Front Royal. Besides numerous out of state addresses of the same, the only one in Virginia with that address is located in Chantilly. I would assume, without any hesitation, that the address should instead be 21 Edgewood St. in Front Royal.

Strange but that is Matthew Tederick’s home address as documented in several websites. So now it appears that 21 Edgewood St. is the home address for the LLC named Dollar House. That is too close to home (ha), and I wonder if Dollar House and his relationship with the LLC is documented in any Conflict of Interest statement to the Town of Front Royal? It would also be very interesting to see Matthew Tedericks’ real position, besides as a Registered Agent, with Dollar House LLC. Remember he was Interim Mayor prior to the sale, so both properties would have to be listed in the COI under his name since it was his name on the agreement and not a real estate firm, etc.

I wonder who Dollar House LLC, with an address of 21 Edgewood St., now works with to fill the apparently large empty lot known as 100 Peyton St. If Dollar House is indeed tied to Matthew Tederick these future earnings must also be reported on the Conflict of Interest document.

Now let’s look at our third and last example. That example is 100 Peyton St. We know that the property is now owned by Dollar House LLC and whatever relationship Matthew Tederick has with that firm, however, the address is used by numerous LLCs, firms, etc. If you look at the table I provided above, there are 13 that use that address that I did additional research on. In addition, I was able to identify several more that use that address just this morning. They included but are not limited to: Williamsheacock LLC and Kie Law PLC which have active DUNS numbers but show cancelled or converted by the Virginia SCC.

Of particular note from the table was Gentle Knight Solutions LLC. This LLC was established in 2014 and uses 100 Peyton Place (sorry) Street, as its business address with Matthew Tederick as its Registered Agent which agrees with the States SCC filing.

However, of interest was that in a local newspaper article dated May 29th of 2019, after Matthew Tederick was selected as the Interim Mayor, it states that Matthew Tederick also serves as the Vice President for Gentle Knight Solutions which was confirmed by a second website. The news article states that Gentle Knight Solutions “dabbles in Health Care” — that’s a strange term for what a firm does. But since Matthew Tederick was now the Interim Mayor, I wonder if he had listed Gentle Knight Solutions, for either his VP position or his RA position on the Conflict of Interest form he would hopefully fill out shortly. Possible he just quit the firm, but their website still shows him as VP. Possible he is working for free.

Remember he made the statement that he would not work outside business related activities while serving for the Town of Front Royal. Did all the firms to which he serves as a Registered Agent or in a senior position such as President or Vice President just go by the wayside – I doubt it. And did the Town of Front Royal document that he could not work on outside activities such as these in their Agreement?

Like in the movie “Peyton Place” or the television show, the ending is not kind. Let’s see what happens to the live “Tederick’s Peyton Places” show in Front Royal to see this as yet unscripted ending.

His record as a businessperson begs questions, as does the address 100 Peyton which he owned, and may still own under Dollar House LLC. But just as important is what did he list on his Conflict of Interest Statement with the Town of Front Royal? Was it filled with the whole truth or just a few examples of what he does? Words matter – as does transparency and the truth.

NOT SURE I WANT TO WATCH this show’s ending.

Simon Mays
Front Royal

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The Lost Game: Gridiron Memories of November 22, 1963



I was playing quarterback in a high school intramural flag-football championship game around 1:30 p.m. on Nov. 22, 1963.

The game went into overtime as the class time ground into its last minutes. My team needed a score to even the alternating possession OT (we were ahead of our time) and extend things to the following day. Impatient, I lofted one deep and up for grabs – like Brett Favre occasionally does – that some defender out jumped my guy for.

BANG! We lost, no tomorrow.

Little did I know that the bang of defeat that had just gone off in my head was the mere echo of a much louder bang that went off almost simultaneously 1,330 miles to the south-west.

That other bang I had yet to hear was one of another kind of defeat that I will, it seems, carry with me to the grave.

Somewhat dejected I headed back to the locker room to shower before heading to my fifth period English class. Someone ran out of the locker room to meet us and said, “The president’s been shot!” Bullshit, that kind of thing doesn’t happen except in history books, I thought, “That’s not funny,” I said.

Inside the Alexandria, Virginia high school, not eight miles from the White House, things seemed normal as I prepared to shower. No solemn faced coaches, no lock down to protect then Republican House Minority Whip Gerald Ford’s sons. “The president’s been shot” was lost beneath what seemed normal adolescent, locker room banter. I began to return to a 15-year-old’s reality: sport, the thought of the girl’s locker room on the other side of a thick cement wall.

Then the PA system crackled and the locker room went unnaturally silent as the principal’s voice, not a secretary’s, asked for attention. A chill went down my spine, perhaps as a subconscious premonition that things were about to change in previously unimaginable ways flashed along sub-atomic particles throughout my brain. The tone first, then the words “President Kennedy has been shot” gravely confirmed what I had immediately denied as a plausible reality. One kid, a little red around the edges for that suburban Alexandria high school said something to the effect of “good.” Though we were casual friends and recent teammates, I started swinging and we went into a pile on the floor only to be quickly pulled apart by classmates and coaches. I had never wanted to damage someone as irrevocably as I did at that moment and the two of us never spoke again, leaving a silent distance between us that precluded the necessity of re-engaging that primal impulse toward some sort of irreversible destruction.

President Kennedy leaves the White House for the final time.

The emotions were immediate, deep and apparently ran in the family. I didn’t find out until years later that at almost the same moment, following a similar remark, my father, a WWII Army veteran who had lived through Normandy and the Battle of the Bulge, was decking a total stranger in a D.C. medical building on I Street where he was waiting for my mother to complete a routine checkup.

Across the Potomac River, we sat quietly in our classrooms: no teaching, no discussion, no emergency mentoring. We sat alone, grappling with our thoughts, as was our teacher. The principal came on again and said the president was dead. The reaction was subdued except for a girl named Jacqueline Kennedy – though I think she spelled her first name differently than the president’s wife. Spelling aside she went off, sobbing, hysteria rising. The teacher took her outside the room to settle her down. Didn’t work, she ended up in the infirmary. I sometimes wonder what happened to Jackie Kennedy, my classmate. How did she ride out that 15-year-old’s identification with the now blood-stained Queen of Camelot?

Forty-odd years later I know that day was the measurable beginning of the direction of the balance of my life. Despite the immediate profundity of a presidential assassination, I couldn’t have recognized that JFK’s violent death would lead directly through a five-year span of political upheaval between my formative 15th and 20th birthdays. This and three other domestic assassinations – of Malcolm X, Martin Luther King Jr. and Robert Francis Kennedy – seemed to earmark the time through a litany of foreign political intrigue, murder and assassination that always seemed to lead in one direction – to the right, toward war, toward implicit corporate profiteering from war, toward social division, toward lies.

That is my perception, my belief – the bad guys won. That is my psychological watershed. Rather than living under the auspice of a state favored by both man and God, I was floating through the most recent episode of civilization in decline, fueled by greed, power, murder and conquest.

It took all of those next five years for me to begin to appreciate what had begun during that that lost football game. By 1969 it was becoming apparent that a hopeful youth-driven world counterculture, as well as the best and the brightest within the world political system reflecting or inspiring the social idealism that characterized that counterculture, the Americans named above, Salvadore Allende, Alexander Dubcek, Patrice Lumumba, Che Guevara and others were beaten.

Around the world we had lost.

We would either be annihilated or assimilated – a foolish, inaccurate footnote to American and World History X – the fiction written by the winners.

I left Alexandria in 1967 for college. I moved from the specter of the federal capital to Richmond, the historical capital of the American Confederacy that had fought the ascendance of that federal system just over a century earlier. In retrospect it seemed an unconsciously profound symbolic move. Though I was through and through a son of the federal government in whose shadow I was raised by two parents it employed, I was soon to become suspicious, some would say paranoid, about its machinations, its intent, its history.

I followed my intellectual instincts for the next five years, studying sociology and psychology – how society and the human mind work. I guess I wanted to know why I had grown so alienated from the culture in which I lived. Was I crazy or did I live in an insane world? I learned things about myself and my society between 1967 and 1973 and most of what I learned took me back to the day my team lost that high school, intramural football game.

In college I learned that three days before John Kennedy’s inauguration, his predecessor, Dwight David Eisenhower, made an astonishing observation in his farewell address to the nation. I had grown up thinking of Eisenhower as a doddering, old, golf-playing general rewarded with the presidency for a job well done holding the Allied war effort together in Europe during World War II. My interest in the fate of his successor led me to a different view of Eisenhower. It began with that farewell address of Jan. 17, 1961.

Presidents Kennedy and Eisenhower at Camp David, April 22, 1961, five days after the first crisis of JFK’s presidency, the failed CIA-sponsored Bay of Pigs invasion.

On that day Eisenhower, the West Point graduate, career military man, general and president who led his country and its allies, first against Nazi Germany and then through the height of the Cold War with the Soviet Union, told his nation that the greatest threat it faced as he prepared to leave office was that born of its own military and corporate institutions in a profoundly changing American landscape.

“This conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience,” Eisenhower told the American people of the corporate, political and military landscape that had arisen in the wake of World War II. “The total influence – economic, political, even spiritual – is felt in every city, every Statehouse, every office of the Federal government. We recognize the imperative need for this development. Yet we must not fail to comprehend its grave implications. Our toil, resources and livelihood are all involved; so is the very structure of our society.

“In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist,” Eisenhower concluded.

The career soldier turned politician had apparently not thought it a sin to normalize relations with the Soviet Union, then our recent military ally, and reduce the rapidly expanding American military budget. This belief, according to Eisenhower biographers, led to much behind-the-scene infighting with the evolving military and industrial institutions Eisenhower spoke of at the end of his eight-year presidency.

Less than three years after Eisenhower’s dour warning, his successor had his head blown off in the streets of Dallas, Texas, while I played football a half a continent away. That successor, John Fitzgerald Kennedy, had also bucked the American military-corporate apparatus during his presidency, and perhaps fatally, more directly and in more immediate situations than Eisenhower had.

First, just three months in office Kennedy refused to commit to direct American military involvement during the 1961 invasion of Communist Cuba by a CIA-trained militia despite the urgings of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and CIA Director Allen Dulles. As a result of the intelligence misinformation and personal coercion he endured during that experience, Kennedy fired Allen Dulles as director of the CIA. He also developed enough distrust of the U.S. military command to avoid the armed, likely nuclear confrontation they suggested over Cuba during the missile crisis less than two years later.

President Kennedy addresses the nation on live television during the Cuban Missile Crisis, when the U.S. and Soviet Union came to the verge of nuclear war according to later unclassified Soviet intelligence documents.

Kennedy is even reported to have stated the intention of scattering what was threatening to become a rouge intelligence agency resistant to presidential oversight “into a thousand pieces” following a 1964 re-election that seemed a sure thing.

A great deal of debate still exists over whether Kennedy was planning implementation of another post-1964 election plan that would have flown further in the face of Eisenhower’s originally-named American “Military-Industrial-Congressional Complex”. That much-discussed plan was a lessening of direct American involvement in Vietnam. That involvement in the fall of 1963 was 16,000 “advisors” compared to the half million combat troops that would be sent there after his death. If true, as key Kennedy insiders assert, that plan reflected JFK’s growing belief that the Vietnam conflict was ultimately a civil war that would have to be won or lost by the South Vietnamese themselves – a decade and the bulk of 65,000 American and two million Vietnamese lives later that belief proved correct.

Many years after the fact I heard a European investigative report that quoted Kennedy archives indicating his ambassador to South Vietnam, Henry Cabot Lodge, reporting back to Washington that presidential directives relayed through the embassy in 1963 ordering CIA operatives in country to back off of aggressive covert actions, including assassinations, were simply being ignored in the field. I wondered then if those “rouge” CIA elements had an inkling those directives would soon change despite Kennedy’s overwhelming popularity as the1964 election approached?

No, probably just a coincidence that Kennedy was soon shot down like a rabid dog on a parade route whose path had been realigned that day to go down Elm Street in front of the Texas School Book Depository in a town whose mayor was reportedly the brother of Allen Dulles’s former military liaison officer.

Coincidence too, I expect that a former Marine named Lee Harvey Oswald worked in that School Book Depository. Oswald was the prodigal American son, who had “defected” to the Soviet Union with a perfect command of the Russian language following his assignment to a top-secret American military intelligence base in Japan from which American U-2 spy flights were launched over the Soviet Union. Later, the prodigal son would reconsider that defection – perhaps because the Soviets thought he was an American spy and kept a close check on him. I sometimes wonder at the benevolence of a nation that would welcome back its prodigal son with camera equipment to start a “new” career, rather than a little prison time for his alleged departure with top-secret information that was claimed to have compromised America’s U-2 spy missions. But how could his native land stay mad at the whimsical Oswald, who despite his highly public pro-Castro activities in New Orleans, cultivated associations with a number of right-wing, anti-Castro associates based in both New Orleans and Miami as he “floundered” philosophically in the years between Russia and Dallas?

Above, JFK and Ike at Camp David in the days after the failed Bay of Pigs invasion of Cuba – likely when the sitting president found out he had been lied to by the CIA about the previous president’s authorizations, or lack thereof, for a CIA-sponsored invasion of Cuba. Photographer Paul Vathis wrote ‘They looked so lonely.’ Below, Vathis’s photo juxtaposed on the wall of the Newseum in D.C. with mob-connected Jack Ruby’s silencing of Lee Harvey Oswald, who died claiming he was set up as a patsy in the JFK assassination. JFK photo sources, credits: Public Domain; White House Photographs; John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston; Robert Knudson; Paul Vathis; Abraham Zapruder; “The Men Who Killed Kennedy” Nigel Turner-produced British TV documentary series; AP; Roger Bianchini at Newseum, Washington D.C.

Pondering these things after launching my own college term paper research on the JFK assassination in 1969, I told my mother, “There are circumstances leading a lot of people to think your old (CIA) bosses were behind it.”

“I wouldn’t be surprised, the way they talked about him,” she surprised me with a frank appraisal of her early 1960s superiors at the top of the American intelligence apparatus.

Now 43 years gone I am the paranoid-tinged, conspiracy freak sitting alone in the dark corners of dark bars, reflecting on the familiarity of low times and low lies glowering at me from the “enduring freedom” of a television screen hovering slightly above my still focused eye.

And 43 years gone from that long lost childhood football game I find myself choking down one final coincidence – that the U.S. president gesturing at me from that screen explaining the necessity of this country’s ongoing military-industrial occupation of Iraq, one of the world’s two primary oil fields, and the ultimate evil of its oil-rich neighbor Iran, is heir to a family legacy the roots of which run deep into Texas oil, American politics and the directorship of the CIA.

Roger Bianchini
Front Royal, Virginia

First published on November 22, 2013 as part of a pull-out section of the Warren County Report on the ongoing significance of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy 50 years later.

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