Friday, August 31, 2007

Quote of The Day

…Americans cast their eyes toward Washington and see ethically and morally challenged politicians from both sides of the aisle who put their needs or the needs of their party, before the national security interests of the United States. In the guise of our nation’s capital, they see a opaque cesspool of hedonism that has managed to attract the weak of character into its epicenter.
- Douglas MacKinnon, Hillary Is Right, Republicans Will Win The White House

That pretty well sums up what I think of Washington right now.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Pull the other one, it has bells on...

I guess if they say so it MUST be true!

China Says Its Military Not A Threat

I'll buy some of that. What? You're throwing in Tiananmen Square too? Wow!

My Hat's Off

I have a message for Ft. Lauderdale Mayor Jim Naugle: Bravo, sir.

Have You Heard?

Bill Kristol, Fox News analyst and editor of the Weekly Standard has visited Iraq and is extremely impressed by the progress that has been made there by the troop build up. This article that I discovered yesterday elaborates more on his findings.

Why am I not surprised that I have not seen much about this in the headlines anywhere or on the news sites? Thank God that consensus does not drive truth. Because the consensus in the Main Stream Media is that the war in Iraq is not winnable. Every day we are bombarded with negative messages about the war. It has done my heart so much good to read the report that I linked to above.

Apparently it is true because the Democrats have turned cannibal when one of their own, Rep. Brian Baird had the audacity to change his mind about the war after visiting Iraq. I can't imagine any scenario where a Democrat would change his mind and agree with the President by suggesting that we stay the course if there wasn't truly progress on the ground in Iraq. Bless Rep. Baird for his integrity on this matter.

The Democrats who are attacking Rep. Baird remind me of a Proverb, "The wise woman builds her house, but with her own hands the foolish one tears hers down."

Make the lie big, make it simple, keep saying it, and eventually they will believe it.
- Adolph Hitler

Stuff That Concerns Me...

There are a number of things going on in the world today that concern me - and most of them seem related. I guess if I had to put a headline on it it would be:

Massive Global Anti-US Empire Forming!

Why do I say this? Well, first of all there is China. China has become more and more bold in its intentions of becoming the next world power. Who could stop them? The former administration gave them technology that moved their rocket program light years forward - that and the espionage that China has engaged in. (And the illegal campaign contributions to the Democratic party.) They are also moving towards a Lunar mission that will without a doubt give them ICBM capability.

Add to that China's massive industrial capability, 1.6 billion population, and overall institutional disregard for human life, and we would have our hands full in any military confrontation with them.

China is also very cozy with the majority of the governments in South America and many in the Caribbean. For more information about that please refer to this article by Newsmax. Chinese companies control the Panama Canal - they own a port on the eastern side. They are also going to be involved in the expansion of the canal and are trying to establish another port on the west coast.

Recently China has denied any imperialistic aspirations, but based on their attitude towards Hong Kong and Taiwan, methinks they protesteth too loudly.

Moving a little closer to home is Hugo Chavez the dictator of Venezuela. Chavez has become bolder and bolder throughout the Americas and the world at establishing connections with the United States' enemies. He is a huge fan of (the late?) Fidel Castro. He has been downright cozy with Iran's nutcase leader. And he is working like a madman to establish ties with China - ties that include military hardware. On top of all of that, Chavez has been working to destabilize the governments of South America. After the earthquake in Peru, Chavez sent relief supplies with his image emblazoned on them deriding the Peruvian government for not being able to take care of its own people. He has also been making friendly advances to the oil producing countries in South America promising the big brotherly assistance of Venezuela in the development of their oil industries. Anyone smell a rat?

Cuba is still a wild card. Who knows what will happen when it is finally announced that Fidel Castro is dead? If we aren't careful, Chavez will incorporate it into his Latino curtain. Out of the frying pan and into the fire. Oh yes, that reminds me that China has gotten permission from Cuba to drill for oil offshore. Experts think that it is one of the biggest untapped stores in the world. Now does it make sense for Chavez to try to move in?

Of course there is the cooperation of Iran and Syria in all of this nonsense. And North Korea is a part of this axis of evil, and on top of it all Russia is sounding very militant again. I suspect that even though France has threatened military action against Iran that they would probably hop on board rather than get creamed again. It all points to a very ugly showdown in the not too distant future. I hope I am wrong, but I fear that I am right.

Update 11:57 8/30/07

I am glad to hear that President Bush has this stuff on his radar... Granted, he did say "If they ever turned hostile..." Just how hostile do they have to be? I have been saying it since before the 2000 election. The moves China is making are strategic and worrisome. If we wait too long to counter we'll end up like the fellow who allowed the anaconda to casually wrap itself around his body. By the time the "hostilities" began, resistance was futile.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Quote Of The Day

Pretending is the grease of modern nonrelationships. Pretending perpetuates the illusion of relationships by connecting us on the basis of who we aren't. People who pretend have pretend relationships. But being real is a synonym for messy spirituality, because when we are real, our messiness is there for everyone to see...[T]he truth is, we are a mess. None of us is who we appear to be. We all have secrets. We all have issues. We all struggle from time to time. No one is perfect. Not one. The essence of messy spirituality is the refusal to pretend, to lie, or to allow others to believe something we are not...When you and I stop pretending, we expose the pretending of everyone else. The bubble of the perfect Christian life is burst, and we all must face the reality of our brokenness.

-Mike Yaconelli, Messy Spirituality: God's Annoying Love for Imperfect People

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Quote of The Day

As Christian apologist Ravi Zacharias has explained, we have now reached a degree of secularization in our society whereby "religious ideas, institutions and interpretations have lost their social significance." This secularization "is revealed in a very inversion of language. It used to be that the Christian worldview was so present in Western culture that even when you were expressing secular ideas you had to borrow religious terminology with which to do it. Now there is an inversion; our world has become so secular that even when you are communicating religious ideas you have to borrow secular terminology with which to do it. Secularization has become so powerful in our social fabric, that the moment you introduce (into a discussion) a moral idea, if it has any connection to a religious worldview it is ipso facto disregarded as (being invalid)."
- David Limbaugh

Click Here to read the entire article. It was a good one.

Thou Shalt Not Bear False Witness...

Make the lie big, make it simple, keep saying it, and eventually they will believe it.
- Adolph Hitler

There is little doubt in my mind that the main stream news outlets have become nothing more than propaganda mills for the far left. In spite of their claims of being fair and balanced, even Fox News does a poor job of presenting the news in an unbiased fashion. Nowhere has this been more evident than in the case of the war on terror. The blog Powerline carried an article today about MSNBC's and CNBC's refusal to run an advertisement from veterans of the Global War On Terror that brings an encouraging message about the war.

I suppose that these networks scoff at such advertisements as propaganda, but I suggest that their obvious slant in reporting and their refusal to include divergent viewpoints is evidence enough of the lack of quality and lack of objectivity in their own reporting. As far as I am concerned, they have no integrity and they are nothing but pawns for those who wish to destroy America.

Read the Powerline Article

The most brilliant propagandist technique will yield no success unless one fundamental principle is borne in mind constantly - it must confine itself to a few points and repeat them over and over.
- Joseph Goebbels

We're Next...

There's another great article by Cal Thomas on the Townhall website. Cal points to the mass exodus of Brits from England and discusses the causes: hyper polical correctness that refuses to instill a sense of nationalism in its citizens, run away immigration with no requirement for assimilation, refusal to teach British culture in the classroom, and a 20% abortion rate that is causing the native population to be quickly outstripped by the high birth rates among the unassimilated immigrant population. His assessment? Great Britain is in grave danger of losing its national identity.

My assessment? Unless something changes, we're next.

Read Vanishing England by Cal Thomas

For Those Becoming Adults...

I read a great article today on the Townhall website written by a conservative professor (Yes, Virginia, there is such a thing.) at UNC-Wilmington. He apparently delivered this speech to his students their first day in his class. I whole-heartedly agree with his sentiment and pray that his students heed his wise admonitions. I dedicate this post to all of the students returning to school.

Read 'Unprotected' by Dr. Mike Adams

God bless you Dr. Adams

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Whatever Happened To Acid Rain?

Last week Cal Thomas wrote an interesting article that was published in the local newspaper. In it he decries the latest "Chicken Little" theories purporting our imminent demise as a result of global warming. I have to agree with his assessment. I find the premises for "global warming" or "climate change" illogical at best.

I am often amazed at what the general public will swallow. I suppose Joseph Goebbels was right when he said,

“If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State.”
It would seem that this is the pattern that we are seeing played out on a global scale. The UN has been propagating this version of 'truth' with the support of many other governments.

I guess it doesn't hurt their case when the South has been pounded by a record heat wave this summer! Much more of this and I'll be looking to move to a cooler clime! Scotland sounds awful good right now!

I think that there are a couple of things to consider in the whole climate change debate - if that is what you want to call it since Al Gore has refused to debate the issue, and dissenting voices are largely either mocked or ignored.

The first issue is whether or not there is actually proof that the entire earth's climate is getting warmer. The second issue is what is causing the change if there is one.

There is a good deal of evidence that seems to indicate that there has indeed been a warm up of some kind. I am reminded of news articles that I have read that purport that the ice over the North Pole has melted, glaciers are retreating, and tropical storms are getting stronger. I also have noticed that our winters in NC seem to be milder than they were when I was a kid.

Does all of this mean that there is a permanent climate transition underway? I doubt it. We have also had a couple of the coldest and snowiest winters that I can remember over the past 5 - 10 years. I tend to believe that this warm up is part of a natural cycle. This belief seems to be supported by evidence that Mr. Thomas mentions in his article. Apparently, the warmest years on record weren't in the late 90s as NASA had once reported, but actually occurred in the 1930s. That sounds cyclical to me. I am also reminded of the belief in the 1970s (also mentioned in the Thomas article) that we were headed for another ice age.

Everything in creation tends to cycle. There are natural fluctuations in nearly every measurement that man can take. (Yes, I know that there are some standards: speed of sound, speed of light, force of gravity, etc.) Thus, my belief is that the evidences of warming are part of a normal cycle.

What might be causing the warming that has sent Chicken Little scurrying for the escape pods? The most plausible answer to me is differences in solar radiation. There are certainly fluctuations in the activity of the sun - an article that I read the other day suggested that it was this sort of solar activity that drove the water from Mars.

I suppose that a simpler explanation, though one that probably wouldn't resound with the scientific community, would be that God has caused this heating up. Could it be that the Almighty is trying to get our attention? Granted, if He is trying to cause us not to sin, heating things up is probably not the way to do it - at least for me. The hotter I get, the crankier I get! With heat you also get the inevitable shedding of layers of clothing - not the best for avoiding sin either. Another reason I prefer fall and winter to spring and summer!

One thing that I refuse to believe is that by driving my car or using electricity that I am contributing to the problem of global warming. I simply find such a claim illogical. First of all, I would point to the industrial revolution. There was so much smoke in the air at that time that buildings were literally ruined by the stuff. Now, our air isn't the cleanest, but it isn't anything like that. Secondly I point to the newly revised data that the 90s weren't the hottest years on record, but instead the 30s were. America's greatest industrial progress came in the 40s, 50s and 60s. We should have been hot as a fire cracker during that time if these hypotheses were true. Thirdly, are the volcanic eruptions that throw tons of "greenhouse" gasses into the air. From what I can gather, volcanoes erupt many more times the greenhouse gas into the atmosphere in one eruption than man can contribute in a year. Thus, if the theories are true, we should see a global temperature spike with every eruption.

There is another thing that I refuse to believe - the dire predictions of the consequences of "global warming." The great fear has been that with global warming we would have massive flooding due to the melting of the polar ice caps. According to Steve at Hog On Ice, Florida is still there even with the melting that is going on. Could there be changes in weather patterns? Of course, but this is nothing new. We know from ancient times that weather patterns have changed. I think that they call it flooding and/or famine. According to the ancients these changes were evidences of divine displeasure, but there I go getting God involved again.

I guess that the bottom line is this: people need energy to live. We could go back to life in the stone age, but here is a news flash - they produced "greenhouse" gas then too. There are over 5 billion people on the planet. Even if we went back to living as the Amish do - without electricity, without cars, without tractors, etc., we would still be burning something all the time. What effect would that have on forests? (Which, incidentally, produce tons of "greenhouse" gas themselves.) I tend to think that we are much better off with the comparatively cleaner alternatives from electricity that have been developed than we would be with greater deforestation that would be required by going back to more primitive means of sustaining life.

Sometimes I think that the environmentalists would be much happier if there were no people here to muck up the place. Well, I suppose that would probably be true for creation, but the damage was done by Adam, and considering the resistance that the world has shown to the second Adam, I doubt that things will be appreciably better until Christ's return - even if man were forced out of the pool.

All of this is not to say that I think that we should just consign earth to becoming a massive landfill. We have a tremendous responsibility to steward this earth. Man has historically not taken this stewardship seriously. The near demise of American Bison and total annihilation of other species worldwide is evidence of this sad truth. However, North Carolina has shown that when people put their minds (and monies) to it, it is possible to reverse some of the damage done by man's wanton greed and disregard for his actions. Dang, there I go bringing sin into the picture again!

My home state has done much to clean its rivers and restore habitat for both game and non-game species. I am encouraged by their successes. I suppose that some of the alarmism displayed by the various environmentalists comes from the sad realization that without some shocking headline - some global crisis - no one will even hear their message. And if no one hears and no one fears then nothing will be done. They aren't the only ones who use these tactics. The NRA does it all the time.

There are so many things that the money being wasted on global warming could be better used for. I know it is Utopian, but what about working towards requiring manufacturers to clean up their own mess and not just bury it or dump it into our rivers and oceans? That's a pretty worthy goal. Or how about exposing the ways that the oil producers, automobile producers, and politicians have conspired to stifle cleaner, more efficient technologies? Why not use that money to develop and produce these technologies to actually compete with the establishment?

In the seventies we were told that a new ice age was coming. In the eighties the problem was acid rain and holes in the ozone layer. It is time to stop manufacturing environmental bogeymen and start dealing with the actual problems.

Don't Believe The Hype

Please, please, PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE don't be suckered in by John Edwards' baby-fresh looks and corn ball sentimentalism. He was a senator in NC and was one of the worst we have ever had. He was absent from the Senate as much as he was there. The only person with a more liberal voting record in all of the senate than John Edwards was John Kerry. He spent his entire time as a senator pursuing his dream to run for President of the United States and filibustering Republican legislation and government appointments.

Another NC native has written an article about our former senator that is very insightful.

I particularly liked this quote from the article, "Edwards is many things, but 'just right' he isn't. The only time 'just right' has been used to describe him, it's always been part of the sentence, 'There's something about that Edwards fellow that's just not right.'"

Quote of The Day

Liberals know they're losing the demographic war. Christians have lots of children and adopt lots of children; liberals abort children and encourage the gay lifestyle in anyone with a flair for color. They can't keep up.

- Ann Coulter

Into the Great Wide Open

Today, my best friend from college has left on a quest to discover God's will for him and his family... in Japan. I think that this is the coolest thing.

I always believed that he was called to some kind of vocational ministry, but worried that he either didn't see it or had indefinitely postponed it when he got married. I guess that is why I was so jazzed when he told me what he was about to do.

It takes all kinds of moxy to just pack up and leave your family for a month and go to the other side of the world just to hear what God will say to you. It is bold and daring. I can't wait to hear what the Lord tells him to do.

DavidP tells me that he is going to be blogging about his experiences while he is there. I have linked to his blog here and also have it posted under "Good Reading." Check it out!


Well, it looks like I am back to commenting on things that I see in the news. I guess that is fine, but I don't know that it is what I want this whole blog to be about. There are plenty of things to write about that are happening in the world and lots of things that I am frustrated about politically here. I guess where I am coming from is that I can talk about these things, but what good does it really do? Most of the folks who would read this blog will agree with what I have to say, so why say it?

Still, I guess it is good to be able to vent from time to time, as I am often flummoxed by some of the things that I read. I am just amazed that there are people who think in these ways and act in these ways. It just doesn't fit with my world view at all. The real danger in it all is that I get so frustrated by the stupidity that I end up losing my peace and getting angry about something that my anger won't solve.

It is just like the Hollywood party girls. I can't imagine living the way Lohan, Ritchie, Spears, Hilton and company do. I really feel sorry for them - especially Lohan and Spears - when it seems that their lives are set on self-destruct. It is pitiful really. It just makes me wonder what on earth happened to these people to make them act this way? The cavern in their soul must be massive. I wonder if they know that they are miserable. Britney seems to have a clue that she is. I wish that they knew Jesus.

Not that that would make everything better right away, mind you. I still deal with my own self-destructive tendencies, and I have been a disciple for 19 years. Still, things are a lot better since I found Him, or more approprately, since He apprehended me. I can see the way that He is working in my life to actually heal the wounds that have caused me to act the way that I do. Thank God that there is much less left to be healed than there was even four years ago. Those girls need Jesus so that the pit that they are falling down will actually have a bottom. May He have mercy on them.

I hope to write more about the things that have been going on with me over the past year. I guess the reason that I haven't yet is that I know it is going to take a lot of time to do justice to this season of my life. I guess I should have been blogging all along. Oh well, it will probably make more sense now anyway. Hindsight is 20/20!

This One's A Doozy

An illegal alien who has been deported claims that the US broke the law first because it allowed her to illegally enter the country and pay taxes. What will they think of next?

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Winding Down

Well, baseball season is winding down. This is really the only negative that there is about the advent of fall that I can think of. Of course, lately, fall seems light years away as we have been afflicted with temperatures lingering between 95 and 110 degrees over the past 3 weeks. There isn't much relief in sight either. We're awful dry and terribly hot.

I really feel for those guys that are out having to play in this heat. My brother-in-law is a minor league umpire in the International League. I think that the umpires get the rawest deal of all in baseball. Players and umpires have the same number of games every year, but players know that they will be home for about half of those games. (I realize that not every player calls his team's hometown home.) Since umpires don't have a home field this doesn't hold true for them. It makes it really hard on families.

The other hard part is that those umpires have to stand for the entire game whereas players get to come in and rest for half of each inning. Think about that when you're bellering at old blue over some call that you couldn't have made if you were in his shoes.

Finally, it is alot easier for highly skilled players to make it to the majors than for equally qualified umpires to. I have heard that it is statistically easier to become an astronaut than to become a Major League umpire. I have known excellent umpires who have been cast aside with no explanation - and especially no severance package!

Anyway, these observations aside, I have been able to watch some pretty good baseball over the past few weeks. I saw one of the best games of the season Sunday night at Durham. Durham fell behind 4-1 early in the game. I thought that they were done for because their pitcher was getting beat up pretty bad. But he hung in there and ended up leaving the game after 6 innings. The Bulls came back to tie that next inning, but fell behind one run in the 9th inning. The Bulls' first batter of the ninth got on base and was brought home by the next batter with a towering home run over the blue monster. It was a well-pitched, cleanly played, very exciting game to watch. I hope to go back up to see the Bulls again this season during the playoffs.

I've been keeping up with a the playoff race in the majors too. I'm a little frustrated with my Braves, but hopefully they can be consistent enough in the home stretch to pull ahead in the wildcard race. I'd love for them to catch the Mets for the Division title, but the Mets are playing awfully good baseball right now. I'll also be interested to see if the Yankees can catch Boston. I think that they will at least make a wild card slot.

It looks like it's heating up in baseball even though things are winding down. But hopefully the weather WILL cool off by October.

Going For The Record

Apparently, Congress has tied its lowest approval rating ever. It's pretty bad when no one thinks you're doing a good job. Perhaps the problem comes from the fact that everyone on the Hill seems to be occupied with name calling and finger pointing and campaigning and not on doing, God forbid, what they were hired to do by the American people.

There are certain policies that are always going to be unpopular with roughly 50% of Americans: the war, international policy, legalized murder of the unborn, etc. But there are plenty of things that should be simple enough to deal with. It is pretty evident that the vast majority of Americans want something done about border security. This should be a slam dunk, right? Oddly enough, no.

No, instead, our Congress spends its time making sure that there is racial parity in NASCAR racing and investigating whether there is steroid use in baseball.

There seems to be a fairly universal call by Americans to do something about rising gas prices. How has Congress addressed this situation? Um, I'm trying to remember. Oh yes, they've done nothing. Wait! There is that bill that has been proposed to increase the minimum mileage ratings of personal vehicles. How would this help? All it will do is give auto manufacturers an excuse to charge for the changes that market pressure would force them to make without Congressional intervention. (Remember the basic economics class you had back in 9th grade? Supply and demand?)

It reminds me of the new regulations for commercial diesel vehicles that recently went into effect. In an effort to become more "green" Congress mandated that new emissions guidelines go into effect for these vehicles. What is the effect of these changes? They have cut fuel efficiency in HALF. Incidentally, I am amused by the Detroit types that swear that they can't build fuel efficient vehicles because Americans don't want them. Let someone build a fuel-efficient SUV with plenty of space and sufficient power and see if they don't become quite wealthy.

I don't suppose that I can completely blame Congress (although I probably will anyway.) In my old fraternity, we would spend entire business meetings discussing items that would end up passing unanimously in the end. Even though every person would basically say the same thing, during our discussions everyone had to have their say. There must be some demon of stupidity that strikes every business meeting on the planet.

It seems to me that we should be able to significantly reduce taxes by making the government stop doing stuff that they have no business doing. I think that the vast majority of tax money should go to the local government where the taxes are collected, the second largest batch should go to the state government, and the least should end up at the Federal level. I really think that Congress is merely trying to justify their existence up there sometimes.

Of course, the other side of this equation lies in the corruption within the upper echelons of American business and American government. I pray often for the corruption to be revealed and purged. How I long for a generation of law makers and businessmen who are more concerned about what is best for this country instead of what is best for their own bottom lines. I wonder sometimes if it is too late. We need Divine intervention and soon.

Bad News, Y'all

I don't know if you noticed it yesterday, but the Chinese government has outlawed unauthorized reincarnation. Darn!

And I thought our government came up with some stupid regulations.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Has it really been over a year?

Wow, talk about a slacker! I really can't believe that it has been this long since I have posted here. It's been an interesting year, though, capped by 8 months of living off of the provision of God. It's been unbelievable really, and, though I'm not out of the woods yet, the trees are beginning to thin a bit.

I often look at this journey that I am on and wonder what in the world I have gotten myself into. These past months have taught me that living on the edge is a pretty intense place to live - and I have never been much of an adrenaline junkie. First born, cautious, look before you leap sort of guy - not the type that you would ever expect to do something crazy like quit your job before you had found a new one. That's just nuts. Letting God call the shots has been at moments a completely harrowing and alternately utterly exhilarating experience. It is too late tonight to get into details, but over the next little while I will describe what this journey has been like and identify some of the Ebenezers that have been erected along the way.

One of the first reactions that I had to the adversity that I have faced has been one of self-pity, but as I have matured through this process, I have seen that there are lots of people who have it rough. I am not the only person whose life is in chaos. That has been a great revelation to me. Fortunately, at this moment I am handling things well. There are those moments when I'm not doing so good, but they are becoming fewer and further between.

At the moment I am terribly excited about a decision that one of my good friends has made. He is totally stepping out of the boat and going to Japan for a month to seek God's will for the next step in his life. He leaves next week. I have added his blog David P Mobile to my sidebar. Check on it. I think that it is going to be an interesting journey.

Well, I guess that is about it for now. I will try to write some more tomorrow.