March 24, 2008

War on Judeo-Christian Culture

This from Jack Kemp (not the politician):

Here it is. A number of years ago, some "artist" from Montreal, living in NY, tried to set fire to the Christmas displays in Rockefeller Center. This is more of the same War on Judeo-Christian culture via a secondary argument.
 
jack
 
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080324/ap_on_re_us/iraq_protest_mass
 
Iraq war protesters disrupt Chicago Mass
Sun Mar 23, 8:39 PM ET

CHICAGO - Six Iraq war protesters disrupted an Easter Mass on Sunday, shouting and squirting fake blood on themselves and parishioners in a packed auditorium.

Three men and three women startled the crowd during Cardinal Francis George's homily, yelling "Even the Pope calls for peace" as they were removed from the Mass by security guards and ushers.
One Mass attendee, Mike Wainscott of Chicago, yelled at the anti-war protesters.

"Are you happy with yourselves?" he said. "There were kids in there. You scared little kids with your selfish act. Are you happy now?"

The group, which calls itself Catholic Schoolgirls Against the War, said in a statement after the arrests that they targeted the Holy Name Cathedral on Easter to reach a large audience, including Chicago's most prominent Catholic citizens and the press, which usually covers the services.

Kevin Clark of International Solidarity Movement told the Chicago Tribune that he attended the Mass to serve as a witness for the protesters.

"If Cardinal George is a man of peace and is walking the walk and talking the talk, he should have confronted George Bush and demanded an immediate end to the war," Clark said.

Speaking after the service, George said, "We should all work for peace, but not by interrupting the worship of God."

Police charged each of the six protesters with one count of felony criminal damage to property and two counts each of misdemeanor simple battery.

The six were scheduled to appear in bond court on Monday to face the felony charge, police said. They have court date set for March 31 on the misdemeanors.

(This version CORRECTS the genders of protesters. RECASTS to UPDATE with new details, comment from spokesman for protesters.)

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Civics Lesson

Melanie sends this inspiring story.  I liked it, although have not verified the veracity:

*A lesson that should be taught in all schools!*

Back in September of 2005, on the first day of school, Martha
Cothren, a social studies school teacher at Robinson High School in
Little Rock , did something not to be forgotten.

On the first day of school, with the permission of the school
superintendent, the principal and the building supervisor, she
removed all of the desks out of her classroom.

When the first period kids entered the room they discovered that
there were no desks.

Looking around, confused, they asked, 'Ms. Cothren, where are our
desks?'

She replied, 'You can't have a desk until you tell me what you have
done to earn the right to sit at a desk.'

They thought, 'Well, maybe it's our grades.'

'No,' she said.

Maybe it's our behavior.' She told them, 'No, it's not even your
behavior.

And so, they came and went, the first period, second period, third
period. Still no desks in the classroom.

By early afternoon television news crews had started gathering in
Ms.Cothren's classroom to report about this crazy teacher who had
taken all the desks out of her room.

The final period of the day came and as the puzzled students found
seats on the floor of the desk less classroom.

Martha Cothren said, 'Throughout the day no one has been able to tell
me just what he/she has done to earn the right to sit at the desks
that are ordinarily found in this classroom. Now I am going to tell
you.'

At this point, Martha Cothren went over to the door of her classroom
and opened it.

Twenty-seven (27) U.S. Veterans, all in uniforms, walked into that
classroom, each one carrying a sch ool desk. The Vets began placing
the school desks in rows, and then they would walk over and stand
alongside the wall.

By the time the last soldier had set the final desk in place those
kids started to understand, perhaps for the first time in their
lives, just how the right to sit at those desks had been earned.

Martha said, 'You didn't earn the right to sit at these desks. These
heroes did it for you. They placed the desks here for you. Now, it's
up to you to sit in them. It is your responsibility to learn, to be
good students, to be good citizens. They paid the price so that you
could have the freedom to get an education. Don't ever forget it.'

By t he way, this is a true story.... If you can read this, thank a
teacher.

Because it is written in English, thank a Veteran

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Always Leave `em Laughing

By Jack Kemp

NY Times writer Timothy Egan, filling in for Bob Herbert, writes a whimsical parody piece entitled the Donner Party Democrats. In it, Egan equates Pat Robertson with Jeremiah Wright - and takes a pot-shot at religion in general, for "good" measure.
 
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/03/22/opinion/22egan.html?_r=2&oref=slogin&oref=slogin
 
"And then, as the snow piled high deep into March, the Dems turned on each other. One of their leaders had been hanging around the camp of another preacher man, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright Jr.  a nutball like Robertson, blaming America for bringing on the horrid attack. What is it with these men of God? Should have left them home."
 
END OF QUOTE
 
Back in October 2000, a Democrat I knew told me a joke whose punchline was that the "idiot cowboy Bush" would win the election. I calmly replied that if Bush were an idiot, what did that make Al Gore if he could not beat him? Never got an answer. Remember, this was October, before the Florida recount battle. The Democrat had correctly predicted that Al Gore would lose.
 

This Timothy Egan article is what passes for political commentary and soul-searching at the Times. Two ministers are supposed to be representative of the many hundreds of thousands of ministers across the US, in the Times' worldview. And Pat Robertson never said G**D** America or that the US created AIDS to kill black people, as if Robertson was that hateful or dumb enough to believe a disease would have a preferential treatment policy for whites.Last fall, one could have made the argument that the presidential election was the Democrats' to lose. One could have even said that perhaps last January. Now, one could argue either the electionis McCain's to lose - or at least he has a very good chanch of winning. While Mr. Egan admits in print that his party is eating its' own, the only analysis he can make are sophomoric jokes. That's high school sophomore, not college.
 
Keep 'em laughing, Mr. Egan. It's a lot more fun than coming up with a strong candidate.
 
Jack Kemp

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The Radical Wright

By Jack Kemp (the unpolitician):

The "money quote:"
 
http://www.tnr.com/politics/story.html?id=6f7b8f16-c876-4ddb-b0e6-347fdbfd5fb0
 
'Days after that, Wright uncorked an open letter to the Times that accused reporter Jodi Kantor of misrepresenting her interview with him. The screed rambled for more than a thousand words before culminating in this: "There is no repentance on the part of The New York Times. There is no integrity when it comes to The Times. You should do well with that paper, Jodi. You looked me straight in my face and told me a lie!" '
END OF QUOTE
 
Not every day that I more or less agree with Jeremiah Wright. And here is a liberal publication writing some newfound facts about Wright which sheds light on this race baiter.
 
Note the first reader comment calls the attacks on Wright a "Swiftboating." Yes, I would agree - but the Swiftboaters were factual in their evaluation of Kerry, who never released his military records to the public. Nobody took Wright out of any context other than his own jeremiad.
 
Jack Kemp
 
Excerpt from the article:
 
The New Republic
Far Wright by Dayo Olopade
Why Obama's preacher problem isn't going away.
Post Date Wednesday, April 09, 2008
 
 
Now that America has seen clips of Jeremiah Wright--Barack Obama's former pastor and longtime mentor--yelling "God damn America" and referring to the United States as the "U.S. of KKK A," there are obvious questions on everyone's mind. There is, for instance, the complicated biographical question of why Obama aligned himself with Wright in the first place. But there is also the more basic political question of why the presidential candidate didn't disown Wright sooner. After all, whatever personal affection Obama felt for the man who brought him into the Christian fold, he had to realize that Wright was a ticking time bomb for his campaign--someone whom average voters would regard with justifiable horror once they got wind of his views on politics and race. So why didn't Obama push him away long ago?

Actually, he did--sort of. Recall what happened in early 2007. Initially, Obama had invited Wright to deliver the benediction at the event where he would formally launch his candidacy; but, at the last minute, Obama rescinded the invitation. In doing so, it seems likely that Obama understood his political problem and was trying to send his pastor-mentor a polite but firm message: Stay away from the spotlight and, please, for the love of God, try not to cause any controversy, lest you sink my chances of winning.
Most people would have taken the hint. But not Jeremiah Wright. Less than a month later, he was on Fox News bickering with Sean Hannity about "black liberation theology" and admonishing the famously obnoxious TV host, "Let me suggest that you do some reading before you come and talk to me about my field. " Five days later, he was in The New York Times complaining about Obama's decision to block him from speaking and volunteering that, "[w]hen his enemies find out that in 1984 I went to Tripoli [to visit Muammar Qaddafi] with Farrakhan, a lot of his Jewish support will dry up quicker than a snowball in hell." And he wasn't done yet. Days after that, Wright uncorked an open letter to the Times that accused reporter Jodi Kantor of misrepresenting her interview with him. The screed rambled for more than a thousand words before culminating in this: "There is no repentance on the part of The New York Times. There is no integrity when it comes to The Times. You should do well with that paper, Jodi. You looked me straight in my face and told me a lie!"

Why wouldn't Wright take the hint that Obama seemed to be offering and quietly slink into the background, at least until November 2008? Two months ago (long before his most inflammatory sermons had surfaced), I visited Wright's church on a Sunday morning. And what I witnessed that day makes the answer quite clear.


To put it mildly, Jeremiah Wright is a man who is comfortable in the spotlight. Over the past 36 years, he has built Trinity Church, on Chicago's South Side, into a wildly successful institution comprising 8,000 members. The church sponsors two senior centers, an addiction-recovery program, two daycare sites, student mentoring, prisoner visitation, yoga in the mornings, and "singles sermons" on Friday evenings. But, come Sunday morning, all the attention is on one man. On the day I visit--the morning after Obama's landslide victory in South Carolina--three cameras in the main sanctuary are trained on Wright, dressed in one of his trademark dashikis, as he flaps and struts through the Gospel of John, wherein Jesus thwarts his enemies not with force, but with words. The syncopated speaking style politicos have come to expect from Obama has the audience of thousands transfixed. Wright's gravelly tenor hums through the Trinity loudspeakers, and the worshippers are on their feet, murmuring amens. Even choir members can be seen scribbling in their bulletins during the sermon, on the blank, lined pages reserved for such note-taking. (The fine print below? "Sermons copyrighted by Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr.") A scant 30 minutes after the sermon's conclusion, I was able to purchase a copy of Wright's message on DVD in the church bookstore.
 

 
Dwight Hopkins, a church member and professor at the University of Chicago Divinity School, told the Baltimore Sun that some refer to the blocks surrounding Trinity as "Wrightville." Hopkins added that Wright "doesn't like" the nickname, but, that Sunday, I was struck by how much of the sermon was about--well, him. During the address, he let fly with a verbal fusillade aimed directly at his detractors: "I don't care what nobody in the 4-H club says. Y'all know what the 4-H club is?" The church roared, and he explained: "That's Hannity, Hillary, Hobbes, and Haters." Later, while discussing his opposition to South African apartheid, Wright seemed to take another shot at his enemies: "I was talked about then, and I'm still talked about now," he thundered. "But I'm not going to stop being me because of what somebody says about me. [Jesus] set me free to be me and he set me free to forgive stupidity." And here he gets in one more jab: "So I forgive you, 4-H club; I forgive you, confused journalists; I forgive you, nervous negroes--I forgive you."

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Leftist Easter Bunny Hunt

First the Left trained their guns on Christmas, now they have the Easter Bunny in their sights:


The Grave Threat of the Easter Bunny  
By Tom Purcell
FrontPageMagazine.com | Friday, March 21, 2008

Another tradition is making some people uneasy: the Easter Bunny.

Some folks, worried that the Easter Bunny correlates too closely with Christian traditions and is therefore offensive to non-Christians, are abandoning the little fellow.

According to the San Francisco Chronicle, the town of Walnut Creek renamed its Easter Bunny the "Spring Bunny." The Spring Bunny participates in the town's storied annual tradition, the Spring Egg Hunt.

Some malls across America are changing the Easter Bunny's name, too. According to WorldNetDaily.com, some store managers are calling their bunny "Baxter the Bunny," "Garden Bunny" or "Peter Rabbit."

Peter Rabbit was the name of choice for a Rhode Island school superintendent who, according to ABCnews.com, decided the Easter Bunny ought not visit his school district.

His decision made the ACLU happy. After all, as one ACLU fellow said, schools shouldn't be in the business of promoting Easter celebrations.

Which leads to some interesting questions: What is the Easter celebration, anyhow? What is the origin of the Easter Bunny?

Lawrence Cunningham, a University of Notre Dame theology professor, said in the San Francisco Chronicle that the Easter Bunny has little to do with religion.

"The bunny is a fertility symbol with no religious connection to Easter," he said. "The egg, which was popularized in Greece, Russia, and Eastern Europe in connection with Easter, does not have a religious connection to Easter. By taking away the term 'Easter,' these symbols to some extent return to their pre-Christian roots as symbols of spring fertility."

In other words, somewhere along the line, the furry fellow got twisted up with the resurrection of Jesus. Somewhere along the line, he started wearing a vest and handing out eggs and candy. It took a bit of time -- hundreds of years or more -- for the Easter tradition I knew as a kid to evolve.

(Don`t miss the rest of the story at http://www.frontpagemagazine.com/Articles/Read.aspx?GUID=F858BE0C-035C-41F2-8366-EE1881D9149F)

 

Hat tip: Jack Kemp

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Heartwarming Climate Facts

Wil Wirtanen forwards this piece from the Australian for our consideration:

Climate facts to warm to
Christopher Pearson | March 22, 2008

CATASTROPHIC predictions of global warming usually conjure with the notion of a tipping point, a point of no return.

Last Monday - on ABC Radio National, of all places - there was a tipping point of a different kind in the debate on climate change. It was a remarkable interview involving the co-host of Counterpoint, Michael Duffy and Jennifer Marohasy, a biologist and senior fellow of Melbourne-based think tank the Institute of Public Affairs. Anyone in public life who takes a position on the greenhouse gas hypothesis will ignore it at their peril.

Duffy asked Marohasy: "Is the Earth still warming?"

She replied: "No, actually, there has been cooling, if you take 1998 as your point of reference. If you take 2002 as your point of reference, then temperatures have plateaued. This is certainly not what you'd expect if carbon dioxide is driving temperature because carbon dioxide levels have been increasing but temperatures have actually been coming down over the last 10 years."

Duffy: "Is this a matter of any controversy?"

Marohasy: "Actually, no. The head of the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) has actually acknowledged it. He talks about the apparent plateau in temperatures so far this century. So he recognises that in this century, over the past eight years, temperatures have plateaued ... This is not what you'd expect, as I said, because if carbon dioxide is driving temperature then you'd expect that, given carbon dioxide levels have been continuing to increase, temperatures should be going up ... So (it's) very unexpected, not something that's being discussed. It should be being discussed, though, because it's very significant."

Duffy: "It's not only that it's not discussed. We never hear it, do we? Whenever there's any sort of weather event that can be linked into the global warming orthodoxy, it's put on the front page. But a fact like that, which is that global warming stopped a decade ago, is virtually never reported, which is extraordinary."

Duffy then turned to the question of how the proponents of the greenhouse gas hypothesis deal with data that doesn't support their case. "People like Kevin Rudd and Ross Garnaut are speaking as though the Earth is still warming at an alarming rate, but what is the argument from the other side? What would people associated with the IPCC say to explain the (temperature) dip?"

Marohasy: "Well, the head of the IPCC has suggested natural factors are compensating for the increasing carbon dioxide levels and I guess, to some extent, that's what sceptics have been saying for some time: that, yes, carbon dioxide will give you some warming but there are a whole lot of other factors that may compensate or that may augment the warming from elevated levels of carbon dioxide.

"There's been a lot of talk about the impact of the sun and that maybe we're going to go through or are entering a period of less intense solar activity and this could be contributing to the current cooling."

Duffy: "Can you tell us about NASA's Aqua satellite, because I understand some of the data we're now getting is quite important in our understanding of how climate works?"

Marohasy: "That's right. The satellite was only launched in 2002 and it enabled the collection of data, not just on temperature but also on cloud formation and water vapour. What all the climate models suggest is that, when you've got warming from additional carbon dioxide, this will result in increased water vapour, so you're going to get a positive feedback. That's what the models have been indicating. What this great data from the NASA Aqua satellite ... (is) actually showing is just the opposite, that with a little bit of warming, weather processes are compensating, so they're actually limiting the greenhouse effect and you're getting a negative rather than a positive feedback."

Duffy: "The climate is actually, in one way anyway, more robust than was assumed in the climate models?"

Marohasy: "That's right ... These findings actually aren't being disputed by the meteorological community. They're having trouble digesting the findings, they're acknowledging the findings, they're acknowledging that the data from NASA's Aqua satellite is not how the models predict, and I think they're about to recognise that the models really do need to be overhauled and that when they are overhauled they will probably show greatly reduced future warming projected as a consequence of carbon dioxide."

Duffy: "From what you're saying, it sounds like the implications of this could be considerable ..."

Marohasy: "That's right, very much so. The policy implications are enormous. The meteorological community at the moment is really just coming to terms with the output from this NASA Aqua satellite and (climate scientist) Roy Spencer's interpretation of them. His work is published, his work is accepted, but I think people are still in shock at this point."

If Marohasy is anywhere near right about the impending collapse of the global warming paradigm, life will suddenly become a whole lot more interesting.

A great many founts of authority, from the Royal Society to the UN, most heads of government along with countless captains of industry, learned professors, commentators and journalists will be profoundly embarrassed. Let us hope it is a prolonged and chastening experience.

With catastrophe off the agenda, for most people the fog of millennial gloom will lift, at least until attention turns to the prospect of the next ice age. Among the better educated, the sceptical cast of mind that is the basis of empiricism will once again be back in fashion. The delusion that by recycling and catching public transport we can help save the planet will quickly come to be seen for the childish nonsense it was all along.

The poorest Indians and Chinese will be left in peace to work their way towards prosperity, without being badgered about the size of their carbon footprint, a concept that for most of us will soon be one with Nineveh and Tyre, clean forgotten in six months.

The scores of town planners in Australia building empires out of regulating what can and can't be built on low-lying shorelines will have to come to terms with the fact inundation no longer impends and find something more plausible to do. The same is true of the bureaucrats planning to accommodate "climate refugees".

Penny Wong's climate mega-portfolio will suddenly be as ephemeral as the ministries for the year 2000 that state governments used to entrust to junior ministers. Malcolm Turnbull will have to reinvent himself at vast speed as a climate change sceptic and the Prime Minister will have to kiss goodbye what he likes to call the great moral issue and policy challenge of our times.

It will all be vastly entertaining to watch.

THE Age published an essay with an environmental theme by Ian McEwan on March 8 and its stablemate, The Sydney Morning Herald, also carried a slightly longer version of the same piece.

The Australian's Cut & Paste column two days later reproduced a telling paragraph from the Herald's version, which suggested that McEwan was a climate change sceptic and which The Age had excised. He was expanding on the proposition that "we need not only reliable data but their expression in the rigorous use of statistics".

What The Age decided to spare its readers was the following: "Well-meaning intellectual movements, from communism to post-structuralism, have a poor history of absorbing inconvenient fact or challenges to fundamental precepts. We should not ignore or suppress good indicators on the environment, though they have become extremely rare now. It is tempting to the layman to embrace with enthusiasm the latest bleak scenario because it fits the darkness of our soul, the prevailing cultural pessimism. The imagination, as Wallace Stevens once said, is always at the end of an era. But we should be asking, or expecting others to ask, for the provenance of the data, the assumptions fed into the computer model, the response of the peer review community, and so on. Pessimism is intellectually delicious, even thrilling, but the matter before us is too serious for mere self-pleasuring. It would be self-defeating if the environmental movement degenerated into a religion of gloomy faith. (Faith, ungrounded certainty, is no virtue.)"

The missing sentences do not appear anywhere else in The Age's version of the essay. The attribution reads: "Copyright Ian McEwan 2008" and there is no acknowledgment of editing by The Age.

Why did the paper decide to offer its readers McEwan lite? Was he, I wonder, consulted on the matter? And isn't there a nice irony that The Age chose to delete the line about ideologues not being very good at "absorbing inconvenient fact"?

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``Judas`` Richardson and Hillary`s Passion Play

By Jack Kemp (the unpolitician):

James Carville invoked the story of Christ this Easter Week, comparing Bill Richardson to Judas:

http://blog.washingtonpost.com/the-talk/2008/03/richardson_scorns_clinton_aide.html?hpid=topnews

'James Carville told the New York Times that Richardson, a former member of Bill Clinton's Cabinet, had committed "an act of betrayal," adding that it "came right around the anniversary of the day when Judas sold out [Jesus] for 30 pieces of silver, so I think the timing is appropriate, if ironic."

"I'm not going to get in the gutter like that," Richardson responded on "Fox News Sunday." "And you know, that's typical of many of the people around Senator Clinton. They think they have a sense of entitlement to the presidency." '

END OF QUOTE

The gutter, indeed. Just when you thought the Clinton campaign couldn't get any lower, they again exceed in levels of disgust. Keep digging, Carville. We are headed for a historic first in the Democratic Party: two candidates with a below 50 percent approval rating expecting they can be elected President. These Democrats are going to make "Deliverance" seem like an old-time Disney movie.

Jack

 

(A quick thought from Tim; if Richardson is playing the role of Judas, does that make Hillary Christ?  There is only one Jesus, so is she then perhaps the Anti-Christ?    )

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Spitzer`s Watchful Eye

More on Eliot Spitzer`s sleazy private life, courtesy of contributor Jack Kemp and the New York Post:

http://www.nypost.com/seven/03242008/news/regionalnews/spitzer_was_a_peep_date_103242.htm

SPITZER WAS A 'PEEP' DATE

EX-MADAM CLAIMS ELIOT PAID TO WATCH COUPLES HAVE SEX
By CHRISTINA NASCIMENTO in Victoria, Brazil, LUIZ C. RIBEIRO in Sao Paulo and CHUCK BENNETT in NY
March 24, 2008 -- Former law-and-order Gov. Eliot Spitzer took surveillance to a whole new level when he indulged in watching couples getting it on, a Brazilian madam said yesterday in an exclusive interview from her tropical hometown.
 
Hookers who charge $1,000 an hour weren't always enough to satiate Spitzer's perverse sexual desires, said Andreia Schwartz, who claims she hired girls for the governor before police busted the prostitution ring she ran out of her luxury Manhattan apartment in 2006.

She said the disgraced horndog was a kinky voyeur who had a fetish for live sex shows - in addition to regularly hiring "models" from her escort agency.

"I found it strange that he has a beautiful wife but he likes to watch couples," she said, referring to Silda, Spitzer's wife of 20 years. "He was weird."

Anna Cordasco, a spokeswoman for Spitzer, said, "These are completely outrageous fabrications."

Back home in Brazil after 18 months in Rikers Island on prostitution and drug charges, a newly free Schwartz dished openly about the peculiar perversions that ultimately led to Spitzer's downfall.

The brunette ex-madam, whose deportation was held up for a week by authorities desperate for her secrets, says Spitzer was a long-standing client of her $1-million-a-year call-girl ring.

end excerpt

A quick note from Tim
Someone who frequents prostitutes has allowed his desires to gain mastery of him-and lust is one desire that, like alcoholism, is never quenched.  I suspect many more such stories will surface in the future as Mr. Spitzer had the means to feed his appetite with abandon. 

Eliot Spitzer is much like Bill Clinton in many regards, and I wonder what sleazy things a dilligent investigator would find about the ``First Laddie`` should he make a return to the White House with more time on his hands. Maybe Bill and Eliot should get together weekly for a tet-a-tet?


 

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March 23, 2008

Death, Where is Thy Sting? The Easter Gospel

The Easter Gospel

In the end of the Sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the Week,came Mary Magdalene and the other Mary to see the Sepulchre.
And, behold, there was a great earthquake; for the angel of the Lord descended from Heaven and came and rolled back the stone from the door and sat upon it.
His countenance was like lightening, and his rainment white as snow:
And for fear of him the keepers did shake, and became as dead men.
And the angel answered, and said unto the women, fear not ye; for I know ye seek Jesus, which was crucified.
He is not here, for he is risen as he said.

(MATT:28;1,6)


And when the Sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene and Mary, mother of James, and Sa-lo-me, had brought sweet spices that they might come and anoint Him.
And very early in the morning the first day of the week, they came to the sepulchre at the rising of the sun.
And they said among themselves, who shall roll away the stone from the door of the sepulchre?
And when they looked they saw that the stone was rolled away; for it was very great.
And entering into the Sepulchre, they saw a young man sitting on the right side, clothed in a long white garment, and they were afrighted.
And he saith unto them, BE not afrighted: Ye seek Jesus of Nazareth, which was crucified: He is risen: He is not here; behold the place where they laid Him.

(Mark:16;1,7)


Now upon the first day of the week, very early in the morning, they came unto the sepulchre, bringing the spices they had prepared and others with them.
And they found the stone rolled away from the sepulchre.
And they entered in, and found not the body of the Lord Jesus.
And it came to pass, as they were much perplexed thereabout, behold, two men stood by them in shining garments.
And as they were afraid, and bowed down their faces to the earth, they said unto them, Why seek ye the living among the dead?
He is not here, but is risen: remember how He spake unto you when He was yet in Galilee,
Saying the Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again.

(Luke:24;1,7)


But Mary stood without the sepulchre weeping, and as she wept she stooped down and looked within the sepulchre.
And seeth two angels in white sitting, one at the head, the other at the feet of where the body of Jesus had lain.
And they say unto her, woman, why weepeth thou? She saith unto them, because they have taken away my Lord, and I know not where they have laid him.
And when she had thus said, she turned herself back, and saw Jesus standing, and knew not that it was Jesus.
Jesus saith unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? Whom seekest thou? She, supposing him to be the gardener, saith unto him, Sir, if thou have borne Him hence, tell me where thou has laid Him, and I will take Him away.
Jesus saith unto her Mary. She turned herself and saith unto Him Rab-bo-ni: which is to say, master.

(John:20;11,16)

This is the Word of the Lord.


HAPPY EASTER TO ONE AND ALL.

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March 22, 2008

The Transformative Power of Thinking

By Craig Willms

The list of liberally minded people who had to leave the socialist leanings of their lemming-like friends continues to grow. Of course there are heavyweights like Ronald Reagan and Bill Bennett, but there are also those who came of age in the 60's and 70's when the establishment was depicted as country club Republicans and their corporate benefactors.  Folks like Michael Medved, Harry Stein, David Horowitz, Evan Sayet, Dennis Prager and James Lileks immediately come to mind. Today we welcome David Mamet into the light.

These gentlemen took it for granted that the Democratic Party was where intelligent, thinking people belonged. To believe otherwise was foolish; conservatives were knuckle dragging, mouth breathing, war mongering Neanderthals. Dennis Prager remembers well when first he voted Republican - leaving the booth he felt like a sinner. Lileks spent a few years working in Washington DC during the Clinton years and came back to the Twin Cities disillusioned and empty. Both he and Harry Stein recognized the insanity of the ultra-liberal left and their unrelenting hatred and anger at their own country. Lileks found his solace in humor and learned that conservatives were not as stuffy and rigid as he was led to believe. Stein found that it was impossible to have a conversation with his own friends because they were so close minded and angry all the time.

Medved came to his aversion to the illogical left more methodically over the years as he applied his considerable intelligence and innate love of his country to his politics. Similarly, Horowitz came to his reformation through applied logic in the face of a hate-filled radical upbringing. He eventually recognized that the prescription he and his radical family and friends sought for America was actually a deadly poison.

Perhaps the most interesting was Evan Sayet. Born and raised in the very center of the progressive heartland, New York NY, Sayet knew of nothing else but a liberal mindset. While the misgivings of his birthright beliefs were wobbling before Sept. 11th 2001 the terrorist attacks on his "homeland" opened his eyes for the first time toward his friends and associates.

Sayet was already a highly successful writer for television and the big screen when his transformation came. After he was struck by the light he succinctly boiled it all down in a few sentences:

Start Quote - ...the Democrats are wrong on just about every issue. Well, I'm here to propose to you that it's not "just about" every issue; it's quite literally every issue. And it's not just wrong; it's as wrong as wrong can be; it's 180 degrees from right; it is diametrically opposed to that which is good, right, and successful. What I discovered is that this is not an accident. This is part of a philosophy that now dominates the whole of Western Europe and the Democratic Party today. I, like some others, call it Modern Liberalism. The Modern Liberal will invariably side with evil over good, wrong over right, and the behaviors that lead to failure over those that lead to success.  - End Quote

Evan doesn't even give the socialists the benefit of having good intentions. Even I believe that most people who describe themselves as Democrats are decent human beings. Their leaders - whom they blindly follow without any deep thought beyond what they get from sound bites and shibboleths - do not have good intentions toward the country of their birth. The leaders of the Democratic Party want to bring an end to America as we know it and install a pacifist, progressive, European secular humanist foundation over the land of the free and the home of the brave.

That brings us to the latest convert David Mamet. Mamet is an American author, essayist, playwright, screenwriter and film director. Over the years he has received Tony nominations for Glengarry Glen Ross (1984) and Speed-the-Plow (1988). As a screenwriter, he received Oscar nominations for The Verdict (1982) and Wag the Dog (1997). Needless to say he's a big shot.

Writing for the Village Voice of all things Mamet offered a surprising essay called "Why I Am No Longer a 'Brain-Dead Liberal``. In this honest look at himself and his beliefs David Mamet realizes what we on the center right have come to accept. Liberalism as an ideology is bereft of serious thought. Most of it is silly, childish ranting about fairness... From the Mamet essay:

Start Quote - As a child of the '60s, I accepted as an article of faith that government is corrupt, that business is exploitative, and that people are generally good at heart.

These cherished precepts had, over the years, become ingrained as increasingly impracticable prejudices. Why do I say impracticable? Because although I still held these beliefs, I no longer applied them in my life. How do I know? My wife informed me. We were riding along and listening to NPR. I felt my facial muscles tightening, and the words beginning to form in my mind: Shut the f@%k up. "?" she prompted. And her terse, elegant summation, as always, awakened me to a deeper truth: I had been listening to NPR and reading various organs of national opinion for years, wonder and rage contending for pride of place. Further: I found I had been-  rather charmingly, I thought-  referring to myself for years as "a brain-dead liberal," and to NPR as "National Palestinian Radio."

This is, to me, the synthesis of this worldview with which I now found myself disenchanted: that everything is always wrong.

But in my life, a brief review revealed, everything was not always wrong, and neither was nor is always wrong in the community in which I live, or in my country.  - End Quote

This was perhaps the most prescient revelation: that everything is ALWAYS wrong. Just try to watch NBC news some evening. Nine of every ten stories are about how terrible America is in one way or another. Even the positive stories are about courageous people righting some terrible wrong perpetrated on the victims of America.

Mamet's conversion to right thinking became cemented when he started listen to and read the "thinkers" on the conservative pro-American side of the political spectrum. Again from the essay:

Start Quote - I held those two views of America (politics, government, corporations, the military). One was of a state where everything was magically wrong and must be immediately corrected at any cost; and the other-the world in which I actually functioned day to day-was made up of people, most of whom were reasonably trying to maximize their comfort by getting along with each other (in the workplace, the marketplace, the jury room, on the freeway, even at the school-board meeting).

And I realized that the time had come for me to avow my participation in that America in which I chose to live, and that that country was not a schoolroom teaching values, but a marketplace.

"Aha," you will say, and you are right. I began reading not only the economics of Thomas Sowell (our greatest contemporary philosopher) but Milton Friedman, Paul Johnson, and Shelby Steele, and a host of conservative writers, and found that I agreed with them: a free-market understanding of the world meshes more perfectly with my experience than that idealistic vision I called liberalism.   - End Quote

Neither Mamet nor any of the aforementioned converts are stereotypical country club Republicans. Many would be hard pressed to call themselves Republicans at all. Since there is no place for them in the Democratic Party all that's left is the terribly flawed alternative party which at least is strongly for free market economics.

I am convinced that David Mamet is only the latest in a long line of intelligent people who will grow weary of brain dead liberalism. Welcome home David.

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Al-Qaeda Ties to Iraq

By Timothy Birdnow

Ken Timmerman has a piece at Newsmax detailing the extensive ties between Al-Qaeda and the Iraqi government of Saddam Hussein.

According to the article:

``Despite their incompatible long-term goals, many terrorist movements and Saddam found a common enemy in the United States``, the report’s authors at the Institute for Defense Analysis (IDA) state.


But instead of reporting on this conclusion, most of the media accounts have focused on a single sentence that appears in the executive summary, stating that the report’s authors found ``no smoking gun`` or ``direct connection`` between Saddam’s Iraq and al-Qaida.


The United States Joint Forces Command, which commissioned the report from IDA, provided reporters late last week with a CD containing nearly 2,000 pages of supporting documents that purportedly formed the basis of the conclusions authored by Lt. Col. Kevin Woods and James Lacey in the 94-page redacted summary that initially was leaked to the press.

The piece continues:

I have written about the Harmony data base of captured Iraqi military and intelligence documents in my recent book, "Shadow Warriors: Traitors, Saboteurs, and the Party of Surrender." [Editor's Note: Get Ken Timmerman's book with a free offer. Go here now.]


One of the most damning documents to emerge from the Harmony data base, I wrote, was a Jan. 18, 1993 order from Saddam Hussein, transmitted to the head of Iraqi intelligence, ``to hunt the Americans that are in Arab lands, especially in Somalia, by using Arab elements or Asian (Muslims) or friends.``


In response, the head of the Iraqi Intelligence Service informed Hussein that Iraq already had ties with a large number of international terrorist groups, including ``the Islamist Arab elements that were fighting in Afghanistan and [currently] have no place to base and are physically present in Somalia, Sudan, and Egypt.`` In other words, al-Qaida.


The authors of the IDA study note that Saddam’s Iraq ``was a long-standing supporter of international terrorism``, and that these particular documents provided ‘detailed evidence of that support.'


The study also points out that the captured documents ``reveal that Saddam was training Arab fighters (non-Iraqi) in Iraqi training camps more than a decade prior`` to the 2003 war.

and also:

The 112-page Harmony data file ISGQ-2005-00037352 contains Saddam’s order, as well as personal pledges to carry out suicide operations from more than one hundred “volunteers,” including a brigadier general.


In the order he issued just one week after the 9/11 attacks, Saddam stated that the volunteers should sign pledges “to be written in blood,” presumably their own.


Four years before this order, Saddam announced with great fanfare that he had tasked a prominent Iraqi calligrapher to produce a Quran written with his own blood. Saddam reportedly had doctors draw his blood for the task.


Several other key documents are glaringly absent from the IDA report and provide direct evidence of Saddam Hussein’s deep involvement with al-Qaida and its component organizations.


Among them is a 1999 notebook kept by an unidentified Iraqi intelligence official that detailed meetings between top Iraqi leaders and visiting Islamic terrorists. (Harmony document ISGP-2003-0001412).


One Baghdad visitor was Maulana Fazlur Rahman a signer of Osama bin Laden’s infamous 1998 fatwa calling on Muslims to ``murder Americans``. Another was Afghan mujahedin leader Gulbudin Hekmatyar, who was also supported by Iran.


Roy Robison, a former U.S. government contractor who published an analysis of Saddam’s relationship to al-Qaida last year, argues that when Rahman met with Iraqi Vice president Taha Yassin Ramadan in 1999 ``he did so as the father of the Taliban and as a leader of the World Islamic Front which declared war on the U.S the year before.``


Another document not included in this latest report was a review by Iraqi Intelligence Service (IIS) of their ongoing ties with Osama bin Laden and other opponents to the Saudi regime (Harmony document ISGZ-2004-009247).


This document reads like a memorandum for the record, written in early 1997, tracing the beginnings of the Iraqi regime’s relationship to Osama bin Laden.


In a letter dated Jan. 11, 1995, Saddam Hussein personally authorized the General Director of Intelligence to establish direct contact with bin Laden in Sudan, the report states.


The initial meeting with bin Laden took place just one month later, on Feb. 19, 1995, and included an offer by Iraq to provide bin Laden with broadcasting facilities and a discussion of plans to perform joint operations against foreign forces in the land of Hijaz [ie, Saudi Arabia].


Following bin Laden’s expulsion from Sudan, in July 1996, the memo states that the Iraqi intelligence service is ``working to revitalize this relationship through a new channel.``

End excerpts

This is a powerful piece, and puts the lie to the mainstream media-and the average American leftists-claim that we essentially invaded an innocent country.  Our invasion of Iraq was central to any plan to keep America safe.  Had Bill Clinton done the invasion, we would not have been treated to the harumphing of ``Not in Our Names`` and the other anti-war crowd. 

On the anniversary of the invasion I was driving through the county seat of St. Louis County, a business district in a town named Clayton (St. Louis is, incidentally, not in St. Louis County but is rather it`s own county.)  I passed about 80 banner-waving protesters, composed of college kids and middle-aged people in business suits.  The kids had an excuse; they are young and dumb.  The middle-aged people are classics; reliving the glory days of the `60`s and `70`s war protests.  I rolled down my window and shouted ``grow up!`` at them-they weren`t very amused.  Several of them had ``Bush is a War Criminal`` signs, illustrating perfectly the stupidity and hyper-partisan nature of this movement.  Not that the President was doing what he thought best, no. Not that there is a disagreement, that perhaps the President was foolish or rash, even.  No.  He is EVIL!  He is a hate-filled man determined to murder and mayhem to make money for oil profits. 

These people are completely disconnected from reality.  They have feasted on the banquet of wrath and partisan hatred for so long that they can no longer discern reality from fantasy.  A big part of that is this business the press has promulgated that Iraq was not a problem and that we invaded for oil money and political gain.  If that were the case, why didn`t oil prices drop before the last mid-term elections?  Why are we going into an election year with the prospects of $4 gasoline? 

The Left is so angry that they temporarily lost power that they no longer care for the security of the Nation, or the fact that the terrorist enemies will be far worse than those right-wing conservatives they so fear.  Bush had ``warrantless wiretapping`` to check phone records against known terrorists outside of the country?  What do they think that an Islamic overlord will do?  Bush allows a trickle of water poured over a murdering thug`s nose, or turns down the air-conditioning?  That is worse, to them, than cutting off Daniel Pearle`s head.  There is NOTHING worse than George W. Bush (except maybe Dick Cheney.)

So, mountains of evidence will not convince these people that we were justified in going into Iraq, and they will not tolerate an invasion of Iran, even should a nuclear weapon end at their doorsteps.  They will, I have little doubt, blame Bush and the Right for their troubles. 

But, as Phillip K. Dick once pointed out, reality is that thing which, when you stop believing in it, does not go away.  The real problem of Islamic Jihad, the desire to settle the old scores of Tours (Poitiers) and Vienna, the desire for world hegemony from a suddenly rich band of 7th century thugs, will not go away.  Complacency is just not an obtion, nor is sticking one`s head in the sand (or a darker place) going to accomplish anything but our mutual destruction.  Liberalism will be dead if this cancer continues to grow, yet the liberals are determined to sew the seeds of their own destruction for temporary political power and out of hatred to conservatives.

But reality just doesn`t go away, and neither will the truth in this matter.

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Obama on the Huffington Post; Nothing Respectable Here

By Jack Kemp (the unpolitician):

Obama posted an exclusive reply to his "racism/Rev. Wright" speech at Huffington's website. That means he considers it respectable, as he does Jeremiah Wright. Is this how he plans to heal America' s political divide?

It reminds me of an Andy Warhol movie I once saw in which a "couple" (don't ask) are trying to get on welfare with a pillow underneath the "wife's" top to fake a pregnancy. When the pillow falls out and the social worker flees, the "wife" cries out, blaming her boyfriend, "We were gonna be respectable and get on Welfare!"

There is nothing respectable here.

Jack

http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,340349,00.html

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

PORTER BERRY, FOX NEWS: Ms. Huffington, how are you? I'm Porter Berry from "The O'Reilly Factor." I wanted to ask you a couple of questions about the Web site. Some of the stuff you have on the Web site, some hate speech. One person commented talking about Tony Snow. They said quote, "His cancer will return and he will die a very painful death." Excuse me, one of your bloggers on the Huffington Post said, what comes around, goes around. Do you want to comment on that? One of them said, I am sick to death of this jackass, talking about Tony Snow.

ARIANNA HUFFINGTON, HUFFINGTONPOST.COM: You know what? I think you need to learn something about the Internet. The comments that appear there are taken down immediately.

PORTER BERRY, FOX NEWS: This was posted on the middle of February and was up yesterday. Here is what someone said about Nancy Reagan, "Like her evil husband, she has lived for far too long, here is hoping the hag suffers for several weeks and croaks in the tub." Ms. why you allow this kind of hate speech?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

A text quote:

"CARPENTER: They actually have an impressive ad package. What they use is a combination of Google ads, blog ads, they have an in-house advertising team that may seek out certain advertising to place next to a certain kind of post. Like last week, Barack Obama chose the site to publish an exclusive response to the Reverend Wright situation. It is possible they may have placed an ad next to it because the advertiser may have known it would be high traffic and would want to target someone who might be sympathetic to Obama.

O'REILLY: You work for townhall.com, another Web site, correct. If someone on townhall said, I want Nancy Reagan to die, but I want her to suffer, I want Tony Snow's cancer to come back so he dies, what would your Web site do?

CARPENTER: It would be flagged as abusive. We have certain kind of flags in the comment sentence. As does Arianna Huffington's Web site and I am sure it would be taken down immediately."

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Tom Bethell on Barack and His Revolutionary Pastor

This from the American Spectator Online, courtesy of contributor Jack Kemp:

http://www.spectator.org/dsp_article.asp?art_id=12934
 
Special Report
Obama and His Minister
By Tom Bethell
Published 3/21/2008 1:10:42 AM
Ever since Barack Obama delivered his much praised but inadequate race speech on Tuesday, the editorialists have been telling us how much we need a national dialogue on the subject.

Right. It's high time. So here's my contribution:

Rev. Jeremiah Wright's remarks about America were the worst things said about my adopted country since I came here from England in 1962. Louis Farrakhan and Malcolm X are not in the same league as this champion of race hatred from Chicago. Imagine if Senator John McCain had for years been a member of a church where a white pastor said that blacks should go back to Africa where they came from. And McCain were to respond: Well, I disagree with his remarks and I reject what he said but I won't disassociate myself from him, because he has been so important to my life. McCain would be out of the race in the blink of an eye. Yet Obama has not felt the need to distance himself from Pastor Wright.

The New York Times has praised Obama's speech as a "profile in courage." That is baloney -- reflecting the gross double standard that has prevailed for decades on the subject of race. The underlying problem is that the liberals who still control so much of the debate quietly agree with much of what Wright said.

Here's my background on this. I came to America in the first place because I was enamored of New Orleans jazz. The best of the pioneers were almost all black. I wanted to meet these men, some of whom were still living when I first went to New Orleans. I wrote a book about a jazz clarinetist named George Lewis. He was not just black but dark black. There was no white mother or grandmother in his background.

One of the things he told me that I never forgot was that the worst discrimination he ever encountered in the city was from the light-skinned "Creoles," or mulattoes, who considered themselves superior to their darker-skinned brethren. If George played at their clubs and wanted a drink of water he was denied a regular glass but was told to drink out of a jam jar. Years later, in about 1995, I mentioned this little discussed aspect of race relations to Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas. He gave me a look of recognition, smiled and said he knew exactly what George Lewis was talking about.

One lesson we might like to draw is that people with mixed-race background probably do find it harder to "go beyond" issues of race than those who are either black or white.

In my first dozen years in America, I was a conventional liberal. I remember exactly the moment when that began to change. A story in the Times-Picayune described the DeFunis case, which came before the Supreme Court in 1974. Marco DeFunis had sued the University of Washington Law School because their admission policy had promoted less qualified blacks over whites. I knew that this was un-American and contrary to the whole tradition of equality before the law. In the end, the case was declared moot because DeFunis was admitted anyway. Then, in 1978, the Court narrowly ruled in the Allan Bakke case that whites indeed could be discriminated against and equality before the law wasn't really the law after all.

Anti-white discrimination has been legal in this country for 30 years now, even though it is politically unpopular and goes down to defeat when voters are given a voice in the matter.


THE TRUTH IS THAT the African-American establishment benefits from the current system of affirmative action and racial preferences. They feel ennobled by their victim status. White liberals like this arrangement, too, because the cultivation of victimhood and the arousal of guilt feelings is their stock in trade -- practically their raison d'etre. The New York Times' Nicholas Kristof sought to excuse Pastor Wright's mendacious claims that the U.S. government engineered HIV as a death-dealing weapon against blacks. Maybe 30 percent of blacks believe that, Kristof wrote, in extenuation. Perhaps it's time to expose the lies that black leaders spread within their own communities, and not excuse them.

When liberals tell us we need a debate about race what they mean is that they would like to hear no more about Pastor Wright (and indeed he appears to have been packed off to Africa for the duration).

Obama indicated in his speech that he understands how some whites are resentful of racial preferences. Indeed they are, and this liberal initiative is the principal cause of race conflict today. But does this really bother Obama? If it does, he should state forthrightly that the time for affirmative action is passed. Alternatively, he should say that blacks still need this legal privilege.

In all those Democratic debates, I don't think one journalist asked Obama to disclose his current thinking on this topic. But as recently as 2006, he was foursquare behind racial preferences. Geraldine Ferraro's comment that Obama has been the beneficiary of race even as he masquerades as its victim was on target. Obama's attempt to equate that comment with the outrages of the irreverent Wright was just further chicanery from him. Good for Geraldine for refusing to be equated with the "racist bigot," "spewing hatred" from Chicago.

Memo to George Stephanopoulos and Tim Russert: Ask Obama if it's time to abandon racial preferences. And don't let him wriggle free. Tom Sowell has pointed out that Obama's voting record is entirely consistent with support for the "grievance culture" that Pastor Wright appeals to. Obama, in fact, "has been leading as much of a double life as Eliot Spitzer," Sowell added.


I JUST READ A MEALY-MOUTHED article by the Washington Post's Dan Balz ("Will the Answer Outlive the Questions?"). He quoted three "Democratic analysts" who point out that Wright's comments could hurt Obama in November. What was significant was that not one of these analysts went on the record. This shows that we do indeed need a debate about race. The real problem is that it's the liberals who don't want to debate it, probably because they know they would lose.

Prediction: This Obama episode will once more show how the new technology is transforming political debate. Balz conveyed in his piece that the Washington Post will be good soldiers and won't do anything more than absolutely necessary to upset the race industry, of which the Post is a part. But how could the web and the blogs and e-mail be controlled? That's what bothered Dan Balz.

"The danger," he wrote, as though he were already on the Obama team, "is that what might last are the images of his Chicago pastor -- edited and reedited into television ads, YouTube videos and an endless stream of e-mails delivered quietly into the computers of millions of Americans."

Delivered right into our homes! The good news is that the mainstream media no longer control the political debate. That indeed is the danger for Obama.


Tom Bethell is a senior editor of The American Spectator. His Capitol Ideas column appears each month in our print edition.

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March 21, 2008

Good Friday-the Passion According to Matthew

Today is Good Friday, the day celebrating the passion and death of our Lord Jesus Christ. 

The Gospel, according to Matthew:


30And when they had sung an hymn, they went out into the mount of Olives.

31Then saith Jesus unto them, All ye shall be offended because of me this night: for it is written, I will smite the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock shall be scattered abroad.

32But after I am risen again, I will go before you into Galilee.

33Peter answered and said unto him, Though all men shall be offended because of thee, yet will I never be offended.

34Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, That this night, before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice.

35Peter said unto him, Though I should die with thee, yet will I not deny thee. Likewise also said all the disciples.

36Then cometh Jesus with them unto a place called Gethsemane, and saith unto the disciples, Sit ye here, while I go and pray yonder.

37And he took with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and began to be sorrowful and very heavy.

38Then saith he unto them, My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye here, and watch with me.

39And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.

40And he cometh unto the disciples, and findeth them asleep, and saith unto Peter, What, could ye not watch with me one hour?

41Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.

42He went away again the second time, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if this cup may not pass away from me, except I drink it, thy will be done.

43And he came and found them asleep again: for their eyes were heavy.

44And he left them, and went away again, and prayed the third time, saying the same words.

45Then cometh he to his disciples, and saith unto them, Sleep on now, and take your rest: behold, the hour is at hand, and the Son of man is betrayed into the hands of sinners.

46Rise, let us be going: behold, he is at hand that doth betray me.

47And while he yet spake, lo, Judas, one of the twelve, came, and with him a great multitude with swords and staves, from the chief priests and elders of the people.

48Now he that betrayed him gave them a sign, saying, Whomsoever I shall kiss, that same is he: hold him fast.

49And forthwith he came to Jesus, and said, Hail, master; and kissed him.

50And Jesus said unto him, Friend, wherefore art thou come? Then came they, and laid hands on Jesus and took him.

51And, behold, one of them which were with Jesus stretched out his hand, and drew his sword, and struck a servant of the high priest's, and smote off his ear.

52Then said Jesus unto him, Put up again thy sword into his place: for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword.

53Thinkest thou that I cannot now pray to my Father, and he shall presently give me more than twelve legions of angels?

54But how then shall the scriptures be fulfilled, that thus it must be?

55In that same hour said Jesus to the multitudes, Are ye come out as against a thief with swords and staves for to take me? I sat daily with you teaching in the temple, and ye laid no hold on me.

56But all this was done, that the scriptures of the prophets might be fulfilled. Then all the disciples forsook him, and fled.

57And they that had laid hold on Jesus led him away to Caiaphas the high priest, where the scribes and the elders were assembled.

58But Peter followed him afar off unto the high priest's palace, and went in, and sat with the servants, to see the end.

59Now the chief priests, and elders, and all the council, sought false witness against Jesus, to put him to death;

60But found none: yea, though many false witnesses came, yet found they none. At the last came two false witnesses,

61And said, This fellow said, I am able to destroy the temple of God, and to build it in three days.

62And the high priest arose, and said unto him, Answerest thou nothing? what is it which these witness against thee?

63But Jesus held his peace, And the high priest answered and said unto him, I adjure thee by the living God, that thou tell us whether thou be the Christ, the Son of God.

64Jesus saith unto him, Thou hast said: nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.

65Then the high priest rent his clothes, saying, He hath spoken blasphemy; what further need have we of witnesses? behold, now ye have heard his blasphemy.

66What think ye? They answered and said, He is guilty of death.

67Then did they spit in his face, and buffeted him; and others smote him with the palms of their hands,

68Saying, Prophesy unto us, thou Christ, Who is he that smote thee?

69Now Peter sat without in the palace: and a damsel came unto him, saying, Thou also wast with Jesus of Galilee.

70But he denied before them all, saying, I know not what thou sayest.

71And when he was gone out into the porch, another maid saw him, and said unto them that were there, This fellow was also with Jesus of Nazareth.

72And again he denied with an oath, I do not know the man.

73And after a while came unto him they that stood by, and said to Peter, Surely thou also art one of them; for thy speech bewrayeth thee.

74Then began he to curse and to swear, saying, I know not the man. And immediately the cock crew.

75And Peter remembered the word of Jesus, which said unto him, Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice. And he went out, and wept bitterly.

1When the morning was come, all the chief priests and elders of the people took counsel against Jesus to put him to death:

2And when they had bound him, they led him away, and delivered him to Pontius Pilate the governor.

3Then Judas, which had betrayed him, when he saw that he was condemned, repented himself, and brought again the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders,

4Saying, I have sinned in that I have betrayed the innocent blood. And they said, What is that to us? see thou to that.

5And he cast down the pieces of silver in the temple, and departed, and went and hanged himself.

6And the chief priests took the silver pieces, and said, It is not lawful for to put them into the treasury, because it is the price of blood.

7And they took counsel, and bought with them the potter's field, to bury strangers in.

8Wherefore that field was called, The field of blood, unto this day.

9Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy the prophet, saying, And they took the thirty pieces of silver, the price of him that was valued, whom they of the children of Israel did value;

10And gave them for the potter's field, as the Lord appointed me.

11And Jesus stood before the governor: and the governor asked him, saying, Art thou the King of the Jews? And Jesus said unto him, Thou sayest.

12And when he was accused of the chief priests and elders, he answered nothing.

13Then said Pilate unto him, Hearest thou not how many things they witness against thee?

14And he answered him to never a word; insomuch that the governor marvelled greatly.

15Now at that feast the governor was wont to release unto the people a prisoner, whom they would.

16And they had then a notable prisoner, called Barabbas.

17Therefore when they were gathered together, Pilate said unto them, Whom will ye that I release unto you? Barabbas, or Jesus which is called Christ?

18For he knew that for envy they had delivered him.

19When he was set down on the judgment seat, his wife sent unto him, saying, Have thou nothing to do with that just man: for I have suffered many things this day in a dream because of him.

20But the chief priests and elders persuaded the multitude that they should ask Barabbas, and destroy Jesus.

21The governor answered and said unto them, Whether of the twain will ye that I release unto you? They said, Barabbas.

22Pilate saith unto them, What shall I do then with Jesus which is called Christ? They all say unto him, Let him be crucified.

23And the governor said, Why, what evil hath he done? But they cried out the more, saying, Let him be crucified.

24When Pilate saw that he could prevail nothing, but that rather a tumult was made, he took water, and washed his hands before the multitude, saying, I am innocent of the blood of this just person: see ye to it.

25Then answered all the people, and said, His blood be on us, and on our children.

26Then released he Barabbas unto them: and when he had scourged Jesus, he delivered him to be crucified.

27Then the soldiers of the governor took Jesus into the common hall, and gathered unto him the whole band of soldiers.

28And they stripped him, and put on him a scarlet robe.

29And when they had platted a crown of thorns, they put it upon his head, and a reed in his right hand: and they bowed the knee before him, and mocked him, saying, Hail, King of the Jews!

30And they spit upon him, and took the reed, and smote him on the head.

31And after that they had mocked him, they took the robe off from him, and put his own raiment on him, and led him away to crucify him.

32And as they came out, they found a man of Cyrene, Simon by name: him they compelled to bear his cross.

33And when they were come unto a place called Golgotha, that is to say, a place of a skull,

34They gave him vinegar to drink mingled with gall: and when he had tasted thereof, he would not drink.

35And they crucified him, and parted his garments, casting lots: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, They parted my garments among them, and upon my vesture did they cast lots.

36And sitting down they watched him there;

37And set up over his head his accusation written, THIS IS JESUS THE KING OF THE JEWS.

38Then were there two thieves crucified with him, one on the right hand, and another on the left.

39And they that passed by reviled him, wagging their heads,

40And saying, Thou that destroyest the temple, and buildest it in three days, save thyself. If thou be the Son of God, come down from the cross.

41Likewise also the chief priests mocking him, with the scribes and elders, said,

42He saved others; himself he cannot save. If he be the King of Israel, let him now come down from the cross, and we will believe him.

43He trusted in God; let him deliver him now, if he will have him: for he said, I am the Son of God.

44The thieves also, which were crucified with him, cast the same in his teeth.

45Now from the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land unto the ninth hour.

46And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?

47Some of them that stood there, when they heard that, said, This man calleth for Elias.

48And straightway one of them ran, and took a spunge, and filled it with vinegar, and put it on a reed, and gave him to drink.

49The rest said, Let be, let us see whether Elias will come to save him.

50Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost.

51And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent;

52And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose,

53And came out of the graves after his resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many.

54Now when the centurion, and they that were with him, watching Jesus, saw the earthquake, and those things that were done, they feared greatly, saying, Truly this was the Son of God.

55And many women were there beholding afar off, which followed Jesus from Galilee, ministering unto him:

56Among which was Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James and Joses, and the mother of Zebedees children.

57When the even was come, there came a rich man of Arimathaea, named Joseph, who also himself was Jesus' disciple:

58He went to Pilate, and begged the body of Jesus. Then Pilate commanded the body to be delivered.

59And when Joseph had taken the body, he wrapped it in a clean linen cloth,

60And laid it in his own new tomb, which he had hewn out in the rock: and he rolled a great stone to the door of the sepulchre, and departed.

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Cool Draught; the Non-Warming Oceans

Our friend and Contributor (and another American Thinker writer) Tom Joseph sends this observation our way:

Hi Tim,
 
When you think about it, this involves both the properties of heat transference and heat sinks.  Simply, heat must transfer to cold, therefore, the colder (than air temperature) oceans must function as heat sinks in order to reduce worldwide air temperatures.  As this is not happening, then global warming, as it is called, is probably a variance in weather and climate that is within the range of what is normal for our planetary system.  That's the system the warming wussies are clueless about. 

 Their so-called case for warming being caused by, or assisted by man-made activities, each day breaks more and more of the proven laws of physics.  It is time that the world's physicists stepped forward to crush what isn't, and has not ever been, a tenable theory.  When the steering wheel is glued to the undercarriage, car models don't make good toys and children either destroy them or throw them away.  We should follow their intelligent example and throw away these models before the wussies cause some serious damage to our planet and all the people who live on it. 
 
Matter of fact, we should use information about the types of damage the global warmers would cause, if they gained more power, as the backdrop to all rebuttals of their warming fantasies. 
 
tom

Roger Pielke Sr. argues that sea temperatures are the only accurate way to take the planetary temperature. It appears that, at least since 2003, the oceans have not warmed appreciably.

So, no warming in the troposphere, none currently in the oceans. The only sources still suggesting that the Earth is warming are land-based stations, you know, the kind that sit in hot parking lots, next to heat pump compressors, and where vagrants build fires in their barrels to keep warm. 

 

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Obama and the Church of the Revolution

According to a report in World Net Daily, Barack Obama`s Church of the Revolution had published Hamas` terror manifesto. Below is an excerpt from the WND article:

In his July 22, 2007, church bulletin, Wright reprinted an article by Mousa Abu Marzook, identified in the newsletter as a "deputy of the political bureau of Hamas." A photo image of the newsletter was captured and posted today by the business blog BizzyBlog. The Hamas piece was first published by the Los Angeles Times, garnering the newspaper much criticism.

(Story continues below)


According to senior Israeli security officials, Marzook, who resides in Syria alongside Hamas chieftain Khaled Meshaal, is considered the "brains" behind Hamas, designing much of the terror group's policies and ideology. Israel possesses what it says is a large volume of specific evidence that Marzook has been directly involved in calling for or planning scores of Hamas terrorist offensives, including deadly suicide bombings. He was also accused of attempting to set up a Hamas network in the U.S.

Marzook's original piece was titled, "Hamas' stand" but was re-titled "A Fresh View of the Palestinian Struggle" by Obama's church newsletter. The newsletter also referred to Hamas as the "Islamic Resistance Movement," and added in its introduction that Marzook was addressing Hamas' goals for "all of Palestine."

In the manifesto, Marzook refers to Hamas' "resistance"-the group's perpetuation of anti-Israel terrorism targeting civilians-as "legal resistance," which, he argues, is "explicitly supported by the Fourth Geneva Convention."

The Convention, which refers to the rights of people living under occupation, does not support suicide bombings or rocket attacks against civilian population centers, the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America noted.

Marzook refers to Hamas' official charter as "an essentially revolutionary document" and compares the violent creed to the Declaration of Independence, which, Marzook states, "simply did not countenance any such status for the 700,000 African slaves at that time."

Hamas' charter calls for the murder of Jews. Among its platforms is a statement that the "[resurrection] will not take place until the Muslims fight the Jews and the Muslims kill them, and the rock and the tree will say: 'Oh Muslim, servant of Allah, there is a Jew behind me, kill him!'"

In his piece, Marzook says Hamas only targets Israel and denies that Hamas' war is meant to be waged against the U.S., even though Hamas officials have threatened America, and Hamas' charter calls for Muslims to "pursue the cause of the Movement (Hamas), all over the globe."

Trinity Church did not respond to a phone message requesting comment.

Obama's campaign also did not reply to phone and e-mail requests today for comment.

Obama aide wants talks with terrorists

WND reported in January that Malley, an Obama foreign policy adviser, has penned numerous opinion articles, many of them co-written with a former adviser to the late Palestinian Authority President Yasser Arafat, petitioning for dialogue with Hamas and blasting Israel for policies he says harm the Palestinian cause.

Malley also previously penned a well-circulated New York Review of Books piece largely blaming Israel for the collapse of the Israeli-Palestinian negotiations at Camp David in 2000 when Arafat turned down a Palestinian state in the West Bank, Gaza and eastern sections of Jerusalem and instead returned to the Middle East to launch an intifada, or terrorist campaign, against the Jewish state.


 

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Frank Gaffney's Old and New Projects

By Jack Kemp (not the politician):
 
Frank Gaffney, who started working in Washington as an assistant to Sen. Henry "Scoop" Jackson (his immediate boss was Richard Pearle), today heads the Center for Security  Policy. Speaking at a Manhattan synagogue, at a meeting of the Republican Jewish Coalition, New York branch (I bet you didn't think such a thing existed), he started by showing his film "Islam vs. Islamists." This is the same film that PBS commissioned and then found "too one sided" to show, however a number of affiliated stations did broadcast this picture of moderate Muslims trying to create a different voice within their communities in North America and Europe. The public television affiliates often had two moderate Muslims and one hard liner speak for a half hour before the airing, but the film got significant distribution. This has been discussed widely elsewhere on the internet, so I'll just say that I highly recommend seeing it if you already haven't done so.
 
After the showing, Mr. Gaffney spoke of some of his organizations major new projects. The first was on energy independence, mirroring and promoting the ideas of Frank Zurbin's book, Energy Victory. Gaffney stressed the flex-fuel engine which can run on any mixture of ethanol and ordinary gasoline.
 
Mr. Gaffney's second project has been ongoing: the ending of US government and private pension funds investing in state-sponsored terrorism. This has lead to divestment of terrorism in pension laws being passed in California, Florida, Louisiana, Missouri, New Jersey and elsewhere. In fact, Gaffney spoke of investment professional Roger Robinson creating Terror-Free mutual funds for Credit Swisse, Northern Trust, and others.
 
The third project Mr. Gaffney highlighted was stopping an insidious form of economic imperialism known as "Sharia Compliant Finance" in institutions in the US, the European Union and the Middle East. Large firms have hired Sharia advisors that sit on their boards to help channel capital or credit to sharia - and politically related - investing. This means no gambling companies or pork producers - but also no defense firms. Gaffney called it a "financial jihad" and offered the opinion that such investing fits the definition of an act of sedition, an illegal activity. He has given information to the SEC on this matter.
 
The last major new project is quite interesting. Mr. Gaffney calls it "mapping sharia." It consists of having former and retired US intelligence agents visit mosques in the US on an irregular basis, talk to the imams, and basically look for violations of the Smith Act of 1940, a sedition-related piece of legislation. Mr. Gaffney believes that seventy percent of US mosques are Islamist/Wahabist.
 
A question and answer period followed. The first question was about the Middle Eastern Studies departments on American college campuses. Mr. Gaffney said that in the last 30 years, the Saudi government has invested $80 billion (with a "B") into many front organizations worldwide. I must confess I had to leave for the room during most of his reply to this question.
 
The next question topic was the Israeli government's plan to produce electric vehicles. Mr. Gaffney said that this is a better idea in a small country like Israel (you can drive from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem in around an hour, a little longer to get to Haifa).
 
The next questioner voiced concern about permanent government agents going to mosques or any other house of worship to gather information. Many in the audience voiced there unconcern about a government agent in a synagogue, presumably because they had nothing to hide or to be ashamed of saying to anyone. Mr. Gaffney mentioned the Smith Act again
 
The next question was quite confrontative. A person asked why so many Muslims are allowed into the US. Mr. Gaffney replied that most Muslim immigrants are fleeing oppressive political and economic regimes for a better life here. He stated Wahabi interests pay the few extremists well and they have as their aim "The destruction of the US by its' own miserable hands." Sounds like a Democratic Party leadership memo to me.
 
The next questioner mentioned that for years the FBI could not legally go into mosques. Did Mr. Gaffney see problems with the ACLU in this area? Of course, he did, but more or less stated the fight goes on. Gaffney also mentioned that the FBI was conducting internal "sensitivity training" using a trainer who was a CAIR member. He compared this to J. Edgar Hoover using a KGB front organization to advise on how to go after the KGB. Under George W. Bush's watch, he considers this scandalous. If there is a next 9/11 Commission after a future terrorist horror, all this will be found out and the public will be shocked, he said.
 
There was a brief discussion of Mark Styne's book "America Alone" and Europe's falling reproduction rate, but Mr. Gaffney felt that the Europeans could have "a cataclysmic conflict," a civil war before they would give up their continent's identity.
 
The audience was then introduced to two key members of "Stop the Madrassas," a community coalition movement in New York City to thwart the NY Board of Education's slipshod plan to open a publicly funded school with half of its' classes taught in Arabic. They have appeared on Fox News and many blog sites.
 
Mr. Gaffney's final remarks were quite telling. In relation to the Muslim moderates shown in the film, he stated that the sacred texts, the interpretations and the imams who do the interpretations are pro-Islamist hard-liners. Until the texts are changed and integrated into the court and school systems of the Middle East, Islamists will have the "better argument within the faith." Mr. Gaffney replied to another question by stating he is of the opinion that we in the West will not kill all the Muslims, but will find (assumedly growing body of) moderate allies within the Muslim communities of the world.
 
I hope it turns out that way.
 
Jack Kemp

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Israel Expels Al-Jazeera

Well, they`ve finally done it!  Israel has expelled Al-Jazeera; high time, in my opinion.

Why we let the tail wag the dog in the fashion that it does is a complete mystery to me; we allow news organizations run by left wing idealogues or other enemies of our way of life to purposefully mischaracterize and distort events, and we continue to allow these organizations to prosper, visiting them hat-in-hand.  It`s true here in the States, and it`s been true in Israel, where the media coverage is just awful.  I`m happy to see that Israel has finally grown the backbone to kick the SOB`s out.

 

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March 20, 2008

GRITS and Tornadoes

Atmospheric gravity waves could cause tornadoes-one more level of complexity added to our understanding of atmospheric physics that the Global Warming models do not take into account.

From the article by NASA:

Gravity waves get started when an impulse disturbs the atmosphere. An impulse could be, for instance, a wind shear, a thunderstorm updraft, or a sudden change in the jet stream. Gravity waves go billowing out from these disturbances like ripples around a rock thrown in a pond.

When a gravity wave bears down on a rotating thunderstorm, it compresses the storm. This, in turn, causes the storm to spin faster. To understand why, Coleman describes an ice skater spinning with her arms held straight out. "Her spin increases when she pulls her arms inward." Ditto for spinning storms: When they are compressed by gravity waves, they spin faster to conserve angular momentum.

"There is also wind shear in a gravity wave, and the storm can take that wind shear and tilt it and make even more spin. All of these factors may increase storm rotation, making it more powerful and more likely to produce a tornado."

"We've also seen at least one case of a tornado already on the ground (in Birmingham, Alabama, on April 8, 1998) which may have become more intense as it interacted with a gravity wave."

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The NY Times Takes a Fall

By Jack Kemp (not the politician):

As befits an organization that is wrestling with its' dissenters who want to regain shareholder value, an upper level Times employee has left the questionable results of Times reporting for the world of professional wrestling. No, the executive isn't going stage a tag team grudge match between The Times' Pinch Sulzberger and Anthony Lewis vs. American Thinker's Thomas Lifson and Rick Moran.
 
According to the New York Post,
http://www.nypost.com/seven/03192008/business/times_vp_trades_in_blazer_for_new_tights_102579.htm

"George Barrios, Vice President and Treasurer of The New York Times Co., is bolting the Gray Lady to take the role of chief financial officer of the muscle-bound sports-entertainment company.
He is replacing outgoing WWE CFO Frank Serpe, who is retiring after 21 years with the company."

END OF QUOTE

That's right. Mr. Barrios is leaving the New York Times to work for World Wrestling Entertainment, Vince McMahon's wrestling federation.

The article goes on to examine some of the Time's current problems:

"Meanwhile the Times - which is feeling heat form investors over its digital strategy and non-core holdings - yesterday announced revenues from continuing operations decreased 2.6 percent in February to $240 million compared with the same month a year ago.

Advertising revenues decreased 6.6 percent overall to $148 million - hurt by sinking classified sales and weak business in its regional and New England media groups.

Classified ads dropped 19 percent to $32.9 million, paced by big drops in help wanted and real-estate ads."

END OF QUOTE

Something tells me that the WWE is more willing to listen to sound business advice than The Gray Lady. A chart comparing the stock prices of both stocks, each one listed on the New York Stock Exchange, tells the story.

http://finance.yahoo.com/q/bc?t=1y&s=WWE&l=on&z=m&q=l&c=nyt

As of this afternoon, Yahoo Finance states that WWE stock is selling for $19 a share and has moved from $13.85 in the last twelve months - and is also paying a 7.9% dividend. New York Times stock, on the other hand, is $19.10 a share, but came down from high of $26.87 in the last twelve months - and pays a 4.9% dividend. The Times gets slammed in the comparison, in more ways than one.

More puns would be too easy to make, but let it suffice to say that the WWE looks like a more robust business than The Times. And the WWE could even offer some experienced-based insights into the probable coming floor fight at the Democratic National Convention.

Jack Kemp

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