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Archive for the ‘Shame’ Category

What a great week.

We get a Supreme Court ruling on DOMA that WILL be used to attack the exercise of the First Amendment in a “historic” and “unprecedented” way, thanks to a remarkably intemperate ruling written by Justice Kennedy, who decided in his ruling in the DOMA case (United States v. Windsor) that the only purpose in opposing same-sex marriage MUST be malicious, which will be used against churches and religious organizations by a cabal of Christian Derangement Syndrome sufferers and the pink swastika wearing rainbow warriors of “tolerance”. Not content with this decision, the court also issued a ruling on the Prop 8 case (Hollingsworth v. Perry), in which the court came to the rather curious conclusion that you can have standing to be sued, but not have standing to defend against a suit. Such legal alchemy is no longer shocking to me, but the bigger implication of this suit is far more stunning. The net effect of this ruling is that the people of a state can use the initiative process to make laws that their elected officials WON’T, and if their governor and their attorney general refuse to defend against legal challenges, then the proponents of the initiative don’t have standing to defend against those same legal challenges. The silence from the usual defenders of “democracy” is disappointing, but predictable.

After the ruling was released, I was sure I heard the sound of hands rubbing together in Olympia, as the Governor and the Democrats in Olympia are making plans for the next session when the Senate can’t stop them, and they can tax to their grubby little hearts’ content, and then fail to defend a trumped-up lawsuit against an initiative telling them “No.” It will be even less trouble than having the courts do them a solid on overturning our $30.00 license tabs…again, and again, and again.

Then we have the “Tale of Two Apologies”. The first is Paula Deen, a southern cook, with a show on the Food Network and various franchises and a pending cookbook, who admitted in a deposition to having used a racist slur 30 years ago, driving the grievance pimp and race hustling industry into overdrive. Within a week, she lost her show, every business relationship she had, and her publisher dumped her on the cusp of publishing her latest cookbook, despite having given an unnecessary apology for the sin of saying a word frequently used and glorified by members of the supposedly aggrieved class. Incidents like this, and the now infamous Imus incident are proof that Eric Holder was right about us being unable to have an honest conversation about race in this country. When words are only off-limits to one class of persons, and the ones who aren’t restricted are allowed to destroy the careers of those restricted class if they admit to uttering “Voldemort” in the distant past, no honest conversation about race is possible. But at least Jesse Jackson got a few extra moments in the limelight when he offered to help Deen with her “rehabilitation”, so at least his lucrative franchise preserving this perverse status quo will be maintained.

On the other hand, we have Noted Thoughtless Pig, Alec Baldwin, once again launching himself on a gay-slur (I refuse to say “homophobic”, as it would indicate fear, and given what he said, I don’t think he fears gays, I think he holds them in contempt) laden Twitter tirade against a Guardian reporter who made some unflattering allegations about Baldwin’s wife’s behavior at James Gandolfini’s funeral. This isn’t the first time that Baldwin’s Tweeting thumbs have caused him trouble, as he’s tweeted racist slurs before. However, unlike Deen, who said “Voldemort” 30 years ago, when I last checked, Baldwin still had a cushy gig with Capital One, and hasn’t been fired by any of his other employers. While Anderson Cooper and Andrew Sullivan noted the apparent lack of outrage for Baldwin’s rhetorical diarrhea, he seems largely to have gotten a pass, despite the apology which makes claims that are incongruous with his tweets.

I’m not in favor of people having their lives and careers ruined over things they say. That doesn’t mean I’m adverse to speaking out when I think what they say is wrong, dangerous, stupid, etc. I do think that DEMANDING that people being cut off from their means of making a living because they said something that offended someone smacks just a little too much of thought policing for me to be comfortable with. It’s one thing to have no truck with people who offend you (or those who employ them), but it’s quite another to have the expectation that others must share your outrage, and participate in a particularly brutal (and arbitrary) form of collective punishment, which is to be arbitrarily and selectively applied by those who set themselves up as the judge and jury of such socially criminal acts. My contempt is reserved for the deciders who pretend to be guided by such principles as “civility” and a cockeyed notion of “fairness” that only they can mystically discern, according to a subjective standard that we mere mortals are terminally incapable of recognizing, let alone grokking. This contempt is also reserved for the mindless numbers who surrender their own discernment with nary a taxed brain cell to these morally bankrupt clods who have usurped an authority that they prove themselves too hypocritical to objectively wield when they allow such a disparity of outcome in two such similar public faux pas. I could be crass, and suggest that the lesson here is the same one more artfully demonstrated by George Orwell so many years ago in the classic “Animal Farm”, when he observed that “Some animals are more equal than others.”, a concept that seems to have escaped (I hate myself for even using this terminology) “the gay community”, which has struggled so long to enact a dubious and dishonest notion of “equality”, and was given a major victory in this campaign this week by the courts. Instead, I will say that an apology IS owed to someone, and in the great progressive tradition of claiming authority not conferred upon me, I will speak for America when I say:

“I am sorry, Paula Deen. I’m sorry that you believed in the notion of a “post-racial America”, uttered by a President that you voted for, when what he, and many in his party meant was a “Reverse-racial America”, where only white people can be racist, and any excuse to render such a verdict and execute sentence will be pursued by our “betters” in the media, and where your celebrity won’t be enough to protect you, since you failed to write checks to the “right” interest groups. Welcome to Bizzaro World.”

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So I just made the effort to watch the President’s speech at Boston Cathedral today.  I made it just shy of 13 minutes before disgust and impatience got the best of me and I switched to a transcript.

He spoke a lot of words, but I couldn’t find any emotion.  There was the pale assertion that we all claim Boston, the sadly predictable section about himself, Michelle, and himself, a litany of shout outs, the scripture mcnuggets, and glittering empty rhetoric about the spirit of Boston and America, with some brief mentions in the middle for each of the dead, and the collectively wounded, but there was no emotion.  If anything, his petulant rage he displayed yesterday would have been preferable, and given his “they picked the wrong city” talk, it at least wouldn’t have been as out-of-place as the mechanical delivery that he gave instead.

I think of one of the most notable speeches given in remembrance of the dead, The Gettysburg Address, and the brevity of it.  Or the powerful and brief letter penned by Lincoln to Mrs. Bixby. I searched and watched Reagan’s Challenger Speech, and Bush’s speech on the evening of 9-11.  Both a little over 4 minutes.  Neither one contained a shout out.  Neither one injected themselves.  Bush’s was a bit more defiant, but that can be understood under the circumstances.  But the most startling contrast, other than a measure of sympathy that Obama couldn’t imitate, was the fact that HE spoke in a church, when Reagan and Bush spoke from the Oval Office.  Why was this startling?  Because even Jesus could find real emotion, and the shortest verse in the Bible (Jesus wept.) when he came to the graveside of his friend, Lazarus.

Even when he came into God’s house, Obama couldn’t follow the example of his son.

Transcript here, for those who tire of a wooden delivery, and insufferable cadence.

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The world is upside down when the people who make the law show so much contempt for it.

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Gun Control doesn’t fix the problem, which is PEOPLE. What it does do is make masacres like this more likely, especially in “gun free zones”, which if you think about it, are the ultimate expression of gun control. Laws that say “you can’t have a gun here”. Obviously, that only disarms people who are inclined to follow the law.

And before anyone starts hyperventilating, I’m NOT advocating that kids carry guns to school. What I am suggesting is that we allow those who we entrust with keeping our kids safe while they are in the school’s custody the ability to actually DO SO, because when seconds count, the police are only minutes away.

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It was never a brilliant strategery, and now the Politics of Appeasement have led to the sad and predictable result that the Politics of Appeasement leads to.


These are the people who showed “What Democracy Looks Like”.  These are the wunderkinds of the “Arab Spring”.   THESE are the people our leader magnanimously kowtowed to in his famous Cairo speech during his apology tour.  Marvel at their “respect” for us, which we have been told for 3 years that our leader was restoring.  Marvel at their respect for other cultures and their respect for diverse opinions.

And marvel at the fact that these animals are still drawing breath and feeling even bolder at our contrition over their asshattery.

At least our next President shows more interest in being the President of the United States of America than President of the World.  We can’t put the adults back in charge soon enough.

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Predictably, Rutherford, a typical progressive, decided to demonstrate why they need to just leave references to Christianity alone in his response to my previous post on the inherent illogic of the Democrats’ social gospel.   Let’s look a little closer, shall we?

At first blush, your accusation of double standard hits home.

As it should.  You reject the source of that which you think you invoke, then imagine that you know what you’re talking about when you think it supports your agenda.

How can we, on the one hand, try to keep religion out of government and in the next breath use religion as a reason for government action.

Exactly.

To understand this is to engage a bit of nuance which you and your fellow “rightists” have proven incapable of doing.

The only people who believe this are you and Fauxahontas.  Oh, and rabid Progressives who feel rather than think, largely because its easier than thinking.

Those who quote scripture to justify public policy do so because scripture DOES apply to personal choices.

Sometimes.  And sometimes they do so out of an inherent recognition that its teachings and precepts are the basis of our nation’s laws and morals.  We’ve had this conversation before, and the truth, being truth, hasn’t changed.  If you spent more time reading Blackstone, Locke, and the personal papers and correspondence of the Founders and Framers, as well as histories that reference actual source documents and not the incestuous citations between progressive historians who fabricated biographies and studies, instead of Mother Jones, the New York Times, Salon, and other wishcasting publications, it might become clearer to even you.

When I say I want separation of church and state, I’m saying that I don’t want any religion forced on me but I recognize your right to be religious …

When you say it, you embrace a mendacious fallacy introduced in the American consciousness by a Supreme Court Justice with a big chip on his shoulder, ties to the Klan, and a willingness to deny the history that he couldn’t HELP but to be aware of as a lawyer and Justice of the Court.  And because you want to deny that same history, you agree with him.

AND I am also aware of the lessons your religion teaches you.

No.  You’re dimly aware of what a few passages of the Bible say, and you continually demonstrate that you have no understanding of the context, or why it is that the whole book is actually cohesive, because you’d rather cry hypocrite for us not acting the way that you believe that we should, based on your thimbleful of knowledge of a subject that represents an ocean of wisdom for those who study it carefully.

I have a right to expect you to participate in this American civic experiment in a way consistent with your Christian belief system. Your refusal to do so makes you a hypocrite.

First of all, seeing as it has lasted more than 200 years, it is safe to say that it is more than an “experiment”, although, seeing as Progressives keep trying to find new ways to break the system, I can understand your confusion.  As for my “hypocrisy”, as I have already pointed out, staying at a Holiday Inn Express last night doesn’t mean that you actually have a clue what you’re talking about.  You wouldn’t tell a brain surgeon that he’s doing it wrong based on the fact that you once saw a half-hour show on brain surgeons, yet you know a few verses from the Bible and how people who want nothing to do with it any other time will use it support them using force to fund their purchases of votes.  Yes, I’m laughing at you, not with you.

As has been proven time and time again, the Bible can be cherry picked to death.

Yes, people who read something they like and stop frequently do cherry pick from it.  And yes, people of all stripes do it.  The difference is that Christians who read the next part will try to correct those who neglected to do the same. 

But when Progressives do it, they have no interest in hearing the parts they don’t like.  Usually because it would make it harder to pretend that the way they want to live conforms with what they want to pretend Christianity is.

 It is all things to all people. The notion that Matthew is contradicted by Corinthians, Thessalonians and Acts only goes to show that the Bible is not a cohesive book but a potpourri thrown together by a bunch of different people who didn’t coordinate the message.

This is where your lack of knowledge of the subject material makes you look like an idiot.  There is no “contradiction”, except in the imagination which you have substituted in place of an actual command of the subject material.  First, we could start with the verse Fauxahontas used to sell her redistributionist snake oil, only in the context of the ENTIRE section.

31 “When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy[a] angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory. 32 All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats. 33 And He will set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left. 34 Then the King will say to those on His right hand, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: 35 for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; 36 I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’

37 “Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry and feedYou, or thirsty and give You drink? 38 When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You?39 Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ 40 And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’

41 “Then He will also say to those on the left hand, ‘Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels: 42 for I was hungry and you gave Me no food; I was thirsty and you gave Me no drink; 43 I was a stranger and you did not take Me in, naked and you did not clothe Me, sick and in prison and you did not visit Me.’

44 “Then they also will answer Him,[b] saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to You?’ 45 Then He will answer them, saying, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.’ 46 And these will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”

A few things should stand out to you in reading that entire section.  First, Jesus wasn’t talking about government programs taking care of people; he was talking about individuals, and groups of individuals.  This is consistent with the commands he made elsewhere in the Bible.  But at the same time, there was an expectation that those who receive the charity would STILL contribute something toward their well-being.  How do I know this?  Because those “different people” who “didn’t coordinate the message” coordinated the message…something that you’d know if you actually read the book, and contemplated on what you read.

From the Old Testament:

Leviticus 19:9-10:

‘When you reap the harvest of your land, you shall not wholly reap the corners of your field, nor shall you gather the gleanings of your harvest. 10 And you shall not glean your vineyard, nor shall you gather every grape of your vineyard; you shall leave them for the poor and the stranger: I am the Lord your God.

Gleaning was the act of following after the threshers, and picking up the grain that had fallen to ground, and leaving the corners of the field allowed the poor to come and harvest for themselves their sustenance.

This is consistent with the New Testament, and the previously mentioned 2 Thessalonians 3:6-12:

But we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you withdraw from every brother who walks disorderly and not according to the tradition which he[a] received from us. For you yourselves know how you ought to follow us, for we were not disorderly among you; nor did we eat anyone’s bread free of charge, but worked with labor and toil night and day, that we might not be a burden to any of you, not because we do not have authority, but to make ourselves an example of how you should follow us.

10 For even when we were with you, we commanded you this: If anyone will not work, neither shall he eat.11 For we hear that there are some who walk among you in a disorderly manner, not working at all, but are busybodies. 12 Now those who are such we command and exhort through our Lord Jesus Christ that they work in quietness and eat their own bread.

And just in case you want to believe that while Moses and Paul, while consistent with each other, didn’t see it the same way Jesus did, I will call your attention to Mark 12:41-44:

41 Now Jesus sat opposite the treasury and saw how the people put money into the treasury. And many who were rich put in much. 42 Then one poor widow came and threw in two mites,[a] which make a quadrans. 43 So He called His disciples to Himself and said to them, “Assuredly, I say to you that this poor widow has put in more than all those who have given to the treasury; 44 for they all put in out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty put in all that she had, her whole livelihood.”

This puts a very different spin on the specious “skin in the game” argument We’ve heard over the last three years from the President.  But then, if the people who received the most of the taxpayer largesse actually had to contribute to it, then the “urgent priorities” of those so eager to spend other people’s money would probably become a LOT less urgent.

That’s why any non-believer quoting the Bible is engaging in a fool’s errand. I’ve done it a few times myself and have finally learned my lesson. I can say one book says WHITE and you will find me a passage in another book that says BLACK. It’s a foolish method of debate.

No, you haven’t learned anything, because you still presume you understand more than those who have actually done the reading, and have expended the effort understanding the context.  You disappoint me not because you continually get it wrong and then call others “Hypocrite!”, but because you pretend that you can understand it without making the effort to actually learn about it yourself.  Its kind of like someone who complains that the water someone else draws and sets before him isn’t fresh when the well is three steps away, and he is perfectly capable of drawing his own.

Here’s the bottom line …. if your religion obligates you to be charitable, as you have said it does, then there is no need to compel you. When your government says it needs your help, your charitable nature will lead you to cooperate. No conflict at all. But the truth is your charitable nature only goes so far. Your willingness to participate in a cooperative society only goes so far.

No, the bottom line is that you make several false assumptions.  The first is that welfare is synonymous with charity.  Welfare is when government takes money in the form of taxes, and decides who to “help” with it, how to “help” them, and to what degree it extends this “help”.  Charity is when individuals, acting alone, or in groups, such as churches, contribute their own time, their own effort, and their own money to help those that they believe are worthy, in the manner and degree that they see fit.  And they make this determination in the fashion as  they apprehend that their faith requires.  Government cannot fulfill this obligation, because it is a personal one, and it is a personal one, because Christians are expected to be accountable, as the Parable of the Talents illustrates.  This accountability cannot be achieved by paying taxes to welfare.  Anyone capable of reading a Congressional Budget (yes, I know that they are rare as hen’s teeth for the last three years thanks to Harry Reid) knows that once government decides it needs to spend money on something, it rarely stops spending money on that thing, even when there is no need for it anymore (like Mohair subsidies), or when it doesn’t achieve its goals (Head Start, which has only a negligible effect on the academic achievement for children participating, and then only through the Second Grade).  But when what you do as an individual, or as a church isn’t working, you can do something different, without battling entrenched interests who have every incentive to continue doing what isn’t needed or isn’t working.  

Second, welfare is very public.  So public in fact, that it is starting to advertise, which would make people truly question the priorities of government, and its “War on Poverty”.  If government was serious about winning this “war”, it would be actively working to get people to self-sufficiency, not recruiting people to sign up and accept whatever the government deems adequate for their needs.  As individuals and small groups, we are better able to assess the needs of those we help, and tailor our help in a way that also helps them do for themselves.  But more pointedly, Jesus was very clear about wanting sincere charity, and not a show put on by those attempting to be more pious than their peers (or those who want to be public to show that they care more than you).  From Matthew 6:1-4:

“Take heed that you do not do your charitable deeds before men, to be seen by them. Otherwise you have no reward from your Father in heaven. Therefore, when you do a charitable deed, do not sound a trumpet before you as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory from men. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward. But when you do a charitable deed, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, that your charitable deed may be in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will Himself reward you openly.[a]

Third, government’s “War on Poverty” ignores something that Christians know, and Progressives refuse to acknowledge, despite 50-odd years of this “war” without a single “victory”; the poor will always be among us.  This is something that is actually stated plainly in the Bible, both in the Old and New Testament (so much for those “different authors” not “coordinating the message”):

Deuteronomy 15:11

11 For the poor will never cease from the land; therefore I command you, saying, ‘You shall open your hand wide to your brother, to your poor and your needy, in your land.’

[YOU…not the government, not give to the government so it does it for you…YOU.]

And from Jesus himself, in Matthew 26:11:

11 For you have the poor with you always, but Me you do not have always.

For a Christian to believe that government can win a “War on Poverty” (that it has no interest in winning) isn’t consistent with Christianity, because doing so presumes that man knows more than the Son of God.

What we got from Elizabeth Warren was a civics lesson. In fact that was an implicit theme of the entire convention.

What we got from Fauxahontas (and the entire convention)was an attempt to justify government’s refusal to live within OUR means, government’s refusal to even consider the idea that destroying families with perverse incentives that have led to third and fourth generations living on welfare is not compassionate, doesn’t provide hope, and consigning even more people to it, rather than an economy that permits people to work and provide for themselves, and to foment envy with the idea that your salvation is found by government rooting around in your neighbor’s pocket and giving you the change.

 We’ve gotten away from viewing ourselves as part of a larger enterprise.

Nonsense.  Progressives and their practice of defining people by their economic status, by the color of their skin, by their nationality, by their gender, and by their sexual preference has done more to destroy the notion of being an American first and foremost, than concept of government having very specific spheres of influence, and allowing individuals pursue happiness not by having “it” given to them by government, but pursuing it and earning it for themselves.

As long as we pay OUR mortgage, and get OUR kids through school, we’re happy. If we choose to give to a charity or two, that’s OUR business.

Paying our bills and raising our children are our responsibilities. Not the taxpayers’.  Not the government’s. OURS.   And yes, as I have pointed out, charity is OUR business.  Welfare isn’t.  The difference is accountability.  And because there is accountability, there are also good results, or we do something different, which is far more compassionate than teaching generation after generation that subsistence is all that can be hoped for, because that is all they are capable of…because government tells them so.

 As for the country as a whole … it can go to hell in a handbasket. Being a citizen in meaningless. We never signed up to care for our country.

That’s exactly where it will go if you have your way.  When you put a yoke and harness on those who still have the drive and ambition to strive and achieve, and to even exceed what they only dreamt of in prior days, months, and years, you kill that drive and ambition.  When the government perverts equality of opportunity into equality of result, it sets the bar low, and takes away the incentive for anyone to do better.  You need look no farther than the old Soviet Union to see that this is true.  In a society where people pretend to work because government pretends to pay them, there is hunger, deprivation, squalor, and hopelessness. 

As for citizenship being meaningless, it wasn’t the Republicans who had an illegal alien as a guest speaker, and it isn’t the GOP that continues to push to give all the benefits of citizenship to people who disrespect our laws so much that they are willing to come here and steal them, with the full knowledge that someone else is paying for them.  If you want to talk about people not caring about our country, I suggest that you, and other Progressives spend some time considering your reflections in the mirror.

BiW, I’m sorry dude but your party comes off as selfish and petty.

Coming from someone who believes that there is nothing wrong with attempting justify rooting around in our pockets with a belief system you don’t understand and don’t want anything to do with in any other governmental context, that statement isn’t just ironic, it is mendacious.  I’m not seeking for you or anyone else to give me stuff; it’s you that demands it from us.  And when we dare to suggest the answer to this is “No.”, you start using words like “selfish and petty”.  My autistic 8-year-old has a more developed sense of self-awareness than that.

The two conventions made the contrast so vivid.

It is vivid.  One featured people who are angry, people who think that others have to give until it hurts to make their own lives easier, those who believe that government can and should use other people’s money to pay for what happens between their legs, regardless of the conscience and religious-based objections of those who would be compelled to pay for it, and those who consistently deliver excuses why you can’t succeed without government, and why government can’t succeed in without punishing those who do.

The other featured people who are proud to be Americans, and who recognize that when government is confined to the limitations it was given by people who would have been horrified and repulsed by the idea that government can and should engage in the kind of activities that Progressives seek to expand.  It featured people who don’t define themselves first by color or gender.  It featured people who don’t look for ways to justify failure or lower expectations for individuals, or for the country.

To circle back to the beginning, at first blush you’re right.

And at all the other blushes too.

There is a seeming contradiction in the resistance to religion and the appeal to religious principles. But I submit that appeal is simply an attempt to play the game in your arena … to get you at a level you understand.

And as I have demonstrated, it is cynical, and either rooted in Progressive ignorance, or the hope of our own.  Heck, even just thinking before speaking should prompt people like Fauxahontas to consider prefacing her remarks with a recognition that talking about God in a forum where people sputter with rage at the mere idea of mentioning God in connection with government, or at least making an attempt, however futile, to address the startling incongruity of saying

And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’

From the same podium where NARAL and Klanned Parenthood extolled the virtues of the Left’s Only High Holy Sacrifice, which kills the least of us under cover of a made up and illogical legal justification.  God considers the unborn to be people.  This is clear.

Isaiah 44:1-2

“Yet hear now, O Jacob My servant,
And Israel whom I have chosen.
Thus says the Lord who made you
And formed you from the womb, who will help you:
‘Fear not, O Jacob My servant;
And you, Jeshurun, whom I have chosen.

Jerimiah1:5

“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you;
Before you were born I sanctified you;
I ordained you a prophet to the nations.”

The folly is that you and your fellow conservatives will dig through scripture to justify your selfishness. So ultimately, the liberals attempt to appeal to your religious conscience fails.

The folly is that you and your fellow Progressives presume to tell us that we don’t understand our own Scripture and the faith that it creates.  You presume based on your limited exposure that it contradicts itself, when it does nothing of the sort.  You presume that you can read a verse, and know that someone who has read the whole thing is a hypocrite.  It is a special kind of hubris, and it isn’t the first time even this year that Progressives have engaged in it.   Frankly, it doesn’t make sense.  I’ve “known” you long enough to know that you wouldn’t dare to tell a mechanic how to fix your car, an electrician how to wire your home, or a plumber how to fix your pipes, but you pitch an argument to me to meet your agenda, pretending to base it in my deeply held beliefs, without doing the work required to understand those beliefs, or what forms them, despite that knowledge being readily available.  When we can tell you’re phoning it in, you get angry and call us names, while ascribing all kinds of poor character traits to me, and those like me.
As long as you and other Progressives play it this way, you have no hope of making the sale.

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I was reading the most recent AEES Bulletin this morning, and in the article on “Washington State and the Affordable Health Care Act”, I came across this gem:

Many reforms are currently in place, but key benefits and programs take effect in 2014, including Washington’s new Health Exchange, federal subsidies to help 477,000 people afford health insurance, an expansion of Medicaid for 328,000 poor childless adults and the ban on insurance companies denying people coverage if they are sick.

I guess we dodged a bullet there.  I mean, for a minute, I thought that whole “getting rid of the “free riders” B.S. the Demusocialists were paying lip service to was actually serious.

Just kidding.

Bonus question:  If it doesn’t take effect until 2014, how do they know 477,000 will need that “assistance”?  Why not 500,000?  Why not 100,000?  And the same goes for those poor childless adults.  I mean, with welfare that includes career training, and the improving economy fueled by the growth in government, how is it they can be so certain that these people will still need that assistance?

The War On Poverty™. The one war that government has absolutely no interest in winning, but plenty of interest in waging, as long as it is waged with other people’s money.

 

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Hero: a man of distinguished courage or ability, admired for his brave deeds and noble qualities.

I hope you all found something worthwhile in your Memorial Day Weekend.  I know I did in mine.  It was busy, and it seemed like I spent much of it on the run, but I still found time for the sober reflection that is the reason for the holiday, and heard an excellent sermon on Sunday about reflection and remembrance, the latter being important enough to be mentioned in the Bible more than 100 times.

Then later that evening, I got to watch Courageous, a movie about heroes who made a decision and a committment to be the heroes that every man should be.  My oldest son watched it with me, and we had a very good discussion about the various topics raised in the film.  It won’t be a candidate for an Academy Award, but I appreciate the fact that people like the producers of this film, and people like Tyler Perry are willing to make movies with small budgets, and short timelines to tell a story that encompasses values no longer embraced by the larger studios.

Then, Monday morning, we finally went to see The Avengers.  It didn’t disappoint, but then with Joss Whedon at the helm, it would have been an unpleasant surprise if it did.  What did surprise me was the insertion of some lines, and story developments that reflected some values that Hollywood hasn’t been too big on in recent years.  I suspect that this was allowed to happen because it was based on comic book heroes, and therefore. those values could be mocked by those who felt the need as childish or simplistic.  Sadly, I doubt the message will be received by the rest of Hollywood, much of which chalked the success of The Dark Knight up to “making the character dark”.  After all, the truth doesn’t fit the narrative.  It was an exhilarating experience to see a story unfold that allowed for sacrifice, determination, and redemption in the characters that didn’t leave me feeling as if the dreams of childhood were retconned by a society that feels an overwhelming urge to “reimagine” and redefine that which it finds itself opposed to.

It was a good weekend that was a celebration of the things that it should have been about, and I felt relaxed and ready when I went to work today.  Then I read about Chris Hayes’ shallow pontification over the weekend.  If, like me, you were busy having a good weekend, and decided not to shave points off of your IQ by watching MSNBC, let me fill you in on what Chris said in his show “Up With Chris Hayes” :

“I feel uncomfortable about the word hero because it seems to me that it is so rhetorically proximate to justifications for more war,”  he added that “there are individual circumstances in which there is genuine, tremendous heroism, you know, hail of gunfire, rescuing fellow soldiers,” but that “it seems to me that we marshal this word in a way that is problematic.”

I know what you’re thinking.  I didn’t know that Butch Maddow had a brother either.  Yes, “Up With Chris Hayes” is a stupid name for television program, as it evokes images of this, which doesn’t really get me thinking “serious credibility” but in its own way, does make a certain sense.

The apology, as predictable as an afternoon rain shower in Florida, came less than 24 hours later, and underscored his focus and the true target of his remarks, demonstrating that he still didn’t understand why what he said was wrong. (Yes, Rutherford, I said “wrong” and not “offensive”.  Deal with it.  Or don’t.)

Regardless, Hayes issued an apology for his comments on Monday, saying that he was “deeply sorry” for the remarks. “As many have rightly pointed out, it’s very easy for me, a TV host, to opine about people who fight our wars, having never dodged a bullet or guarded a post or walked a mile in their boots,” Hayes said in a statement. He said that he had made a mistake by conforming “to a stereotype of a removed pundit whose views are not anchored in the very real and very wrenching experience of this long decade of war.”

While its fine to oppose war, secure in the knowledge that other will still join the military and lay down their own lives to keep yours safe, to fail to recognize that sacrifice for what it is, and deny them the very basic respect they deserve simply for having made the decision that you wouldn’t (for whatever reason) is the mark of an ingrate.  You don’t have to have done it yourself to recognize that signing up (or accepting selection) into a service that will take you far from home and most certainly put you in harm’s way to protect your nation and your loved ones, or to be a part of something much larger than one’s own self-interest and benefit is an act requiring the kind of courage that not everyone choses today.  The fact that one would choose to do it, either in the previous administration, or this one, indicates to me that they clearly see something obscured to the Chris Hayeses of the world, and reminds me of a famous movie speech delivered over a decade ago: 

“Son, we live in a world that has walls, and those walls have to be guarded by men with guns. Who’s gonna do it? You? You, Lt. Weinburg? I have a greater responsibility than you could possibly fathom. You weep for Santiago, and you curse the Marines. You have that luxury. You have the luxury of not knowing what I know. That Santiago’s death, while tragic, probably saved lives. And my existence, while grotesque and incomprehensible to you, saves lives. You don’t want the truth because deep down in places you don’t talk about at parties, you want me on that wall, you need me on that wall. We use words like honor, code, loyalty. We use these words as the backbone of a life spent defending something. You use them as a punchline. I have neither the time nor the inclination to explain myself to a man who rises and sleeps under the blanket of the very freedom that I provide, and then questions the manner in which I provide it. I would rather you just said thank you, and went on your way, Otherwise, I suggest you pick up a weapon, and stand a post. Either way, I don’t give a damn what you think you are entitled to. “

There are many ways to be a hero.  Some will cast much longer shadows than others.  Some will do it by living up to their responsibilities, no matter how much they would prefer an eternal adolescence, and some will do it by exhibiting valor and great sacrifice, up to and including the one life they have to give, for their country, or for their fellow man.  That doesn’t always have to be a conscious decision to charge a machine gun, or exposing yourself to fire, because the first act comes with the decision to serve, and to be a target so that others won’t.  It isn’t glamorous, but then, it doesn’t lack conviction, either.

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The Blaze today has the story of Hustler’s photoshop of S.E. Cupp.  While this is emblematic of the REAL “War on [Conservative] Women”…the one that the usual suspects have no interest in talking about, it has been rightly pointed out that all though Hustler was both good enough to provide a disclaimer next to the photoshop…which will undoubtedly NOT accompany the image as it makes its way around the web, and was also good enough to be honest about the reasons for doing so, in creating this image, they have forever marked her in a graphically sexual manner over a political disagreement.

While the National Organization for Women has not yet issued a statement, it is not anticipated that it will offer anything more than a pro forma protest, if any.

The Hustler explanation states:

S.E. Cupp is a lovely young lady who read too much Ayn Rand in high school and ended up joining the dark side. Cupp, an author and media commentator who often shows up on Fox News programs, is undeniably cute. But her hotness is diminished when she espouses dumb ideas like defunding Planned Parenthood. Perhaps the method pictured here is Ms. Cupp’s suggestion for avoiding an unwanted pregnancy.

President Obama, who inserted himself in a similar controversy earlier this year when he personally called Sandra Fluke, the Georgetown Law Student and Activist who was called a “slut” on air by Rush Limbaugh, has so far remained silent on this matter.  Fluke, despite voluntarily enrolling at a Catholic school, testified in a public hearing about the need for the school to offer health care plans that would pay for the birth control of female students, which she claimed could cost upwards of $3000 over the course of a standard law school attendance.  The number was claimed to be based not on a standard that would use either condoms, or “generic” birth control pills available at the nearest Target or Wal-Mart Stores, but upon the exceptions to the rule, who claimed the more expensive formulations were necessary to treat other conditions, an explanation not given until after the figure was criticized and ridiculed by Limbaugh and others.  For the school to offer such a plan , it would have to go against church teaching and doctrine on the issue of birth control.

So because Ms. Cupp opposes PUBLIC funding of Klanned Parenthood, an organization that has undoubtedly been of great utility over the years to a readership that was more than happy to avoid the responsibilities of fatherhood that would have been incurred by sport screwing and the objectification of women, she deserves to be photoshopped with a penis in her mouth…an image that will undoubtedly be seen one day by her children, and the rest of her family.

It seems a far cry from a January day in Tucson, Arizona when President mustered enough sincerity to say these words with apparent conviction:

But at a time when our discourse has become so sharply polarized – at a time when we are far too eager to lay the blame for all that ails the world at the feet of those who think differently than we do – it’s important for us to pause for a moment and make sure that we are talking with each other in a way that heals, not a way that wounds.

But then talk is cheap, and Ms. Cupp’s conservative views and opposition to Klanned Parenthood undoubtedly make a similar intervention by the President in this matter quite impossible.

 

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Pastor Charles L. Worley of Providence Road Baptist Church has a problem.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d2n7vSPwhSU&feature=player_embedded

As the nation grapples with this topic made newsworthy by the President’s desire to not have to run on his record, people on all sides of this issue seem to be stepping up the rancor and rhetoric.  Whether it is Expert Bully Dan Savage’s appeals for tolerance disguised as anti-Christian rants against school kids who dare to believe what their religion teaches about homosexuality, or pastors like this new subscriber to the Westboro Baptist Newsletter, there is an appearance of a desire to push both civility and understanding out of the discussion that we seem to be trying to have and not have simultaneously as a country on this subject.

In the case of Mr. Savage, I can at least understand and rationalize his anger.  People sometimes get angry when they are being told they shouldn’t do something that they enjoy doing.  Anyone who knows an alcoholic who doesn’t want to get cleaned up, and has been on the receiving end of the anger and resentment that comes from suggesting it knows exactly what I am talking about.  Under that circumstance, I wouldn’t expect Mr. Savage to be a rational actor. 

Pastor Worley doesn’t have that excuse.

As a Pastor of a Christian denomination, he should fully understand that there is an Old Testament and a New Testament.  As a Pastor of a Christian denomination, he should fully understand that the New Testament gospel doesn’t preach hatred for the sinner.  The measure of undeserved grace that we ALL enjoy should be sufficient to remind any believer that we are all sinners.  This does not excuse sin, but is meant to motivate each of us to make the daily attempt to NOT do so.  Despite the clear and specific admonitions against homosexuality that are contained in the New Testament, that does not excuse any believer from the commandment to love one another…a commandment that I find myself struggling with in increasing frequency.  To do otherwise does not comport with this commandment.  To do otherwise does not comport with the book of Jude, which states:

17 But, dear friends, remember what the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ foretold. 18 They said to you, “In the last times there will be scoffers who will follow their own ungodly desires.” 19 These are the people who divide you, who follow mere natural instincts and do not have the Spirit.

20 But you, dear friends, by building yourselves up in your most holy faith and praying in the Holy Spirit, 21 keep yourselves in God’s love as you wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to bring you to eternal life.

22 Be merciful to those who doubt; 23 save others by snatching them from the fire; to others show mercy, mixed with fear—hating even the clothing stained by corrupted flesh. [Emphasis Added.]

The Pastor does violence to the Word and the Spirit when he speaks like this.  Shouting with anger and malice doesn’t make the sin he condemns any more a sin than calmly saying so.  But it does make people defensive, and when they get defensive, they stop listening and start shouting.  And when he attacks the sinners for their sins, in hate and anger, he embraces hypocrisy, and becomes a poor ambassador for the one whom he claims to serve. 

I confess that my gut reaction was “If Dan Savage can take time out from bullying school kids for being Christians, then maybe he and the Pastor can have a cage match.  But the sad fact is that the Pastor’s rant only makes people like Savage feel justified in their own hatreds, and makes it that much harder for those who want to speak the truth to a world that sorely needs it.  I am ashamed of my Brother, and I apologize for him,  but I am glad that we have the same hope of redemption, forgiveness, and grace that are the hallmark of the Christian belief, and are what sets it apart from so many other faiths.

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