December 28, 2019

What's Truth Got to Do with It? Schumer on Impeachment

Timothy Birdnow

The Founding Fathers -- whose wisdom just knocks my socks off every day, it really does -- set this process up to be in the Senate, not at the Supreme Court, not in some judicial body."

"Every day, for instance, hundreds of people call us up and lobby us on one side and the other. You can't do that with a juror, The standard is different. It's supposed to be a little bit judicial and a little bit legislative-political. That's how it's been."

Charles Schumer to Tim Russert on Meet the Press, January 1999.

"This is not a criminal trial, but this is something that the Founding Fathers decided to put in a body that was susceptible to the whims of politics.""So therefore, anybody taking an oath tomorrow can have a pre-opinion; it's not a jury box,"

Chuck Schumer to Larry King, also January 1999


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Obama the Heretic

Timothy Birdnow

A few years ago I wrote about Barack Obama's religious beliefs. I concluded from his own words that he is not a Christian, at least not as we define it. Obama seems to believe Christ was merely a man, a moral teacher. In that regard Mr. Obama is more nearly aligned with Arianism, or actually more like the heresy of Islam - a religios heritage he was raised to revere.

I concluded that we cannot state unequivocally Obama is a Muslim but can conclude he is not a Christian.

Well, I just came upon this article which backs up my argument.

It's about Obama's Christmas messages while he was President.

The author states:

Obama failed, moreover, to quote from Scripture during his entire address, a trend he continued for the following seven addresses that he delivered at this event.

In 2010, he basically repeated the theme of 2009, mentioning a "child” born "far from home.” This time, however, he noted that this child was to "spread a simple message of love and redemption to every human being around the world.” While this mention of "redemption” is more on target in reference to Christmas, there’s still no mention of Savior, Jesus, or Christ. In 2011, Obama added a little more detail, mentioning the "stable” and "Christ’s birth” that "made the angels rejoice and attracted shepherds and kings from afar.” The child "grew up to become a leader with a servant’s heart who taught us a message as simple as it is powerful: that we should love God, and love our neighbor as ourselves.”

In other words, the "child” grows up to be a great moral teacher with a powerful message, but certainly not a "savior.” Obama’s conception of the mission of this child, the reason he was born, is vastly different from what Christianity holds.

In 2012, Obama praised "Christ” for teaching that "it is truly more blessed to give than to receive.” No mention of him being a savior. In 2013, Obama praised Nelson Mandela as a "man who championed that generosity of spirit.” He did not mention Jesus by name. He again mentioned the "birth of a child” in a "stable” who "assumed a mighty voice, teaching us lessons of compassion and charity that have lasted more than two millennia.” He again portrays Christ as some great moral teacher, but there’s no mention of him as a savior.

More of the same in 2014 and 2015. He mentions the birth of a "singular child” who would "grow up to live a life of humility, and kindness, and compassion; who traveled with a message of empathy and understanding.” "Jesus” is mentioned once in Obama’s 2015 address as a man who taught moral "lessons” that are the "bedrock values of all faiths.” In other words, for Obama, there’s nothing really unique in Christ’s message: it’s just that this man we’re celebrating happens to have practiced what he preached more than others.

In 2016, his last year of giving the address, Obama finally mentions the phrase "birth of our Savior.” But, he uses the title "Savior” in a meaningless way, saying that the main "message that this child brought to this Earth some 2,000 years ago” is not one of salvation, but one of "love,” "unity,” "decency,” and "hope.”

If you are a Christian you have to believe in the Divinity of Christ and that He saved us from eternal damnation by dying on the Cross. You cannot hold another view of Him.

It may be Obama is an Arian, which is a heresy. Or, more likely, a closeted Muslim. His middle name is Hussein, the name given to Muslims. His father was a Muslim, making him a Muslim by Islamic law. He was educated in a Madross in Indonesia, where he was sent to school by his Muslim step-father.

And you don't walk away from Islam. It's like the Mafia; once in always in.

Now Obama is no longer President but we need to stay informed regardless. The man has a great deal of influence even now.  America needs to know that this man duped them, tricked them into supporting him.

And the Truth shall set ye free! That always goes without saying.

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Star Wars: the Rise of Skywalker an Unfulfilling Paganism

The wife  and I spent a couple of days at a very nice hotel, a mini vacation. Went to the midday screening of Star Wars: the Rise of Skywalker in Imax yesterday.

I know the critics have all hated it but I liked it. You have to remember it's just a feel-good science fiction/fantasy flick, not some cosmic revelation or serious treatise on philosophy and society. I fear too many of the critics expect it to solve all the world's problems.

I know in Britain a majority of people say when polled about their religion that they are "Jedi". Well, I think if you are using a science fiction move as the basis of your belief system you are probably going to be very disappointed - both in life and in the sequels. I just took this for what it was and was very satisfied.

I just don't get this seriousness toward a move where puppets are some of the main characters.

Actually I do; the West has rejected God and the Judeo-Christian beliefs upon which it was based. In desperation we seek another religion, another god. Nature abhors a vacuum, and so it is being filled with nonsense, with Scientism, with Islam, with neo-paganism (Environmentalism is actually a little of all three, for instance.)  These are all false gods. And the story creating a narrative of warring religious orders and divided loyalties in the distant past is made to order for the modern apostate.

So naturally nothing  would have been acceptable to end the saga (which Rise was intended to do). How do you end a belief system?  That is essentially what J.J. Abrams was trying to do with Rise.

He is like the prophets of Baal who contended with Elijah; in the end simple Elijah exposed them as impotent. Sadly, Abrams has exposed the post-modern West as impotent and pagan.

As I said, I enjoyed the movie because I watched it as a movie, a work of fiction, and nothing more. If you believe in something more you don't have to make a make believe world your god.

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China Rewrites the Bible

Timothy Birdnow

China is rewriting the Bible so it comports with their Marxist ideology.

A commenter stated the following folly:

"Of course, China is one of the most oppressive nations in the world and has for over 50 years arrested, tortured, and murdered Christians, Muslims, Jews, and anyone else that dares to become a believer."

Nonsense. There are many millions of Christians and Muslims in China that go about their lives unmolested. There aren't many Jewish people here but they're not arrested, tortured or murdered for their religion either.

I made the obvious reply:

What weed are you smoking?

https:// www.nytimes.com/ 2019/05/22/ opinion/ china-religion-h uman-rights.htm lhttps:// religionunplugge d.com/news/ 2019/2/18/ chinas-faithful- endure-a-long-b itter-winter-of -persecution https:// www.jpost.com/ Opinion/ Tiny-Kaifeng-Jew ish-community-f aces-Orwellian- future-580739

End comment.

I am mindful of Deuteronomy 4:2:

2Do not add to what I command you and do not subtract from it, but keep the commands of the Lord your God that I give you.

And Revelation  22: 18-19:

18I warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this scroll: If anyone adds anything to them, God will add to that person the plagues described in this scroll. 19And if anyone takes words away from this scroll of prophecy, God will take away from that person any share in the tree of life and in the Holy City, which are described in this scroll.

What plagues will God smite the Chinese with now?  They are asking for it.

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Where are the Courts in Virginia?

Timothy Birdnow

SCOTUS should expedite a challenge to this law. In fact, a lower level judge should issue a stay right now. Where are they? Our government is hopelessly corrupt and only works for the Ruling Class.

This issue is crystal clear, a violation of one of the prime articles of the Bill of Rights.

Virginia Governor Ramps up State Prison Budget to Assist in Gun Confiscation Enforcement

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Sorry for the Hiatus

Timothy Birdnow

Sorry for the hiatus, folks!  The wife and I went to her sisters for Christmas and we spent a couple of days at the Drury Inn Hotel.  Figured we were owed a mini vacation. Capped it off at the movies yesterday where we saw the new Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker flick in Imax. 

It was a nice little getaway, but I ate and drank way too much and am still recovering from the bloating and fatigue. I probably won't feel better until New Years Eve, and then I'll do it all over again!

At least I plan on staying on New Years.

At any rate, I'm back. Please mill around smartly until new posts arrive.

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December 25, 2019

The Nativity of our Lord Jesus Christ

Timothy Birdnow

The Word of the Lord:

1"Behold, I will send My messenger, who will prepare the way before Me. Then the Lord whom you seek will suddenly come to His temple—the Messenger of the covenant, in whom you delight—see, He is coming,” says the LORD of Hosts.

2But who can endure the day of His coming? And who can stand when He appears? For He will be like a refiner’s fire, like a launderer's soap.

3And He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver; He will purify the sons of Levi and refine them like gold and silver. Then they will present offerings to the LORD in righteousness.

4Then the offerings of Judah and Jerusalem will please the LORD, as in days of old and years gone by.

5"Then I will draw near to you for judgment. And I will be a swift witness against sorcerers and adulterers and perjurers, against oppressors of the widowed and fatherless, and against those who defraud laborers of their wages and deny justice to the foreigner but do not fear Me,” says the LORD of Hosts

Malachi3: 1-5

1"For behold, the day is coming, burning like a furnace, when all the arrogant and every evildoer will be stubble; the day is coming when I will set them ablaze,” says the LORD of Hosts. "Not a root or branch will be left to them.”

2"But for you who fear My name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its wings, and you will go out and leap like calves from the stall. 3Then you will trample the wicked, for they will be ashes under the soles of your feet on the day I am preparing,” says the LORD of Hosts.

4"Remember the Law of Moses My servant, the statutes and ordinances I commanded him for all Israel at Horeb.

5Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful Day of the LORD. 6And he will turn the hearts of the fathers to their children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers. Otherwise, I will come and strike the land with a curse.”

Malachi4


And there was silence from Heaven for four hundred years.

The Gospel according to Luke:

In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2 (This was the first census that took place while[a] Quirinius was governor of Syria.) 3 And everyone went to their own town to register.

4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 6 While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7 and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.

8 And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,

14 "Glory to God in the highest heaven,
and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”

15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, "Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

16 So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. 17 When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, 18 and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20 The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.

21 On the eighth day, when it was time to circumcise the child, he was named Jesus, the name the angel had given him before he was conceived.

The Gospel according to Matthew:

Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. 19 And her husband Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame, resolved to divorce her quietly. 20 But as he considered these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, "Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. 21 She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” 22 All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet:

23 "Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son,
and they shall call his name Immanuel”

(which means, God with us). 24 When Joseph woke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him: he took his wife, 25 but knew her not until she had given birth to a son. And he called his name Jesus.
The Visit of the Wise Men

2 Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the east came to Jerusalem, 2 saying, "Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose[d] and have come to worship him.” 3 When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him; 4 and assembling all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Christ was to be born. 5 They told him, "In Bethlehem of Judea, for so it is written by the prophet:

6 "‘And you, O Bethlehem, in the land of Judah,
are by no means least among the rulers of Judah;
for from you shall come a ruler
who will shepherd my people Israel.’”

7 Then Herod summoned the wise men secretly and ascertained from them what time the star had appeared. 8 And he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, "Go and search diligently for the child, and when you have found him, bring me word, that I too may come and worship him.” 9 After listening to the king, they went on their way. And behold, the star that they had seen when it rose went before them until it came to rest over the place where the child was. 10 When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy. 11 And going into the house, they saw the child with Mary his mother, and they fell down and worshiped him. Then, opening their treasures, they offered him gifts, gold and frankincense and myrrh. 12 And being warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they departed to their own country by another way.

This is the Gospel of the Lord.

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

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Preferring Herod to Jesus

This from the archives:

Fay Voshell

He has been described as a great moral leader who was "candid, fair and honest…no one was afraid of him and everybody trusted him.” He was "leading his people down new and unfamiliar avenues…His brown eye was exceedingly wise and gentle. A child would like to sit on his lap and a dog would sidle up to him.” He had a tremendous "capacity for feeling” and was a "good natured man of principle” and "kindly geniality.”

As Paul Johnson, author of Modern Times wrote, the authors of such tributes included writer H.G. Wells; Hewlett Johnson, the Dean of Canterbury; an American ambassador, Joseph El Davis; Emil Ludwig, the famous biographer; physicist J.D. Bernal and the Chilean writer Pablo Neruda.

The man receiving the unctuous accolades was the tyrant Joseph Stalin. We should not be terribly surprised.

The Left has always preferred Herod to Jesus.

Leftists also have always preferred to substitute their own messianic figures in place of the Son of Man, leaders whose ideology promises redemption of society and the eradication of societal ills through fundamental transformation that includes eradication of undesirables. more...

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Why Christmas?

Timothy Birdnow

Another from the archives!

Why Christmas indeed? Non-Christians have a very difficult time understanding the religious implications of Christmas, and why it is so important to the Christian faith. Atheists scoff at Christmas in the religious sense because they think it nothing more than a co-opting of the old Roman Saturnalia, which was a pagan festival celebrating the winter solstice. I remember a few years ago atheists were saying "happy solstice!" in a vain attempt to de-sacralize Christmas. There has been a big push to eliminate Christmas, a war being waged on it, just as the Left (largely successfully) waged war on Easter; when I was a boy Easter was a big holiday, with everyone participating. Now it is primarily "spring break" and only in the churches is it even remembered that it is Easter (which to Christians is an even bigger holy day than Christmas.)

The forces of darkness have pressed heavily on the culture to disown Christ from His birth to His death and Resurrection.

But again, I must ask the question; why Christmas? What is so special about it? Is it the fun of giving and getting? The pageantry? The colorful lights, frosty air, ice skating? Ugly sweaters? Egg nog? (Well, there is something to be said for that!)

Is it something deeper? Perhaps about charity, kindness, good will?

Nope.
more...

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Hillary and the Ghost of Elections Past

Timothy Birdnow

Here's a fun one from the archives!

Now old Hillary's electoral prospects were dead: to begin with. There is no doubt whatever about that. The register of her loss was certified across these United States and signed by the Electors of the College of gentlemen and ladies appointed to the task. It was called by the Associated Press on election night in November, and that is good upon Change for anything the venerable news outlet put it's hand to. Hillary's prospects were dead as a door nail.

Obama knew she was finished? Of course he did. Obama and Hillary were partners in crime for I don't know how many years.

Well, actually I do; since Obama managed to snatch the nomination from old Hillary back in 2008.

Oh! But she was a tight-fisted hand at the grind- stone, Hillary! a squeezing, wrenching, grasping, scraping, clutching, covetous, old sinner! Hard and sharp as flint, from which no steel had ever struck out generous fire; secret, and self-contained, and solitary as an oyster. The cold within her froze her husband's randy ardor, nipped her pointed nose, shriveled her cheek, stiffened her gait; made her eyes red, her thin lips blue and spoke out shrewdly in her grating voice. A frosty rime was on her head, and on her eyebrows, and her wiry chin. Se carried her own low temperature always about with her; she iced her office in the dogdays; and didn't thaw it one degree at Christmas. Her pantsuits and Mao jackets were flecked with frost. more...

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Virginia's Second Amendment Attack

Dana Mathewson

I hadn't planned to post "heavy" things on Christmas Day, but then I realized that the Left never ceases its attack on America, even for a moment. And the great Walter Williams posted this article on Townhall today, so I felt it worthy to pass along.

Virginia Governor Ralph Northam apologized for his medical school blackface stunt, but he will have much more to apologize for if he signs into law a bill that attacks Virginia citizens' Second Amendment rights. The measure is Senate Bill 16, which would ban "assault" firearms and certain firearm magazines. Since Democrats have seized control of Virginia's General Assembly, they are likely to push hard for strict gun control laws. Those laws will have zero impact on Virginia's criminals and a heavy impact on Virginia's law-abiding citizens who own, or intend to own, semi-automatic weapons for hunting or their protection. As a friend once explained to me, "I carry a gun because I can't carry a cop."

I am proud of my fellow Virginians' response to the attack on their Second Amendment rights. Firearm owners in the state have joined with sheriffs to form Second Amendment sanctuary counties. That means local authorities will be required to protect Second Amendment rights in the face of any attempt by Virginia's General Assembly to abrogate those rights. Eighty-six counties -- over 90% -- in the Virginia commonwealth have adopted Second Amendment sanctuary resolutions. Spotsylvania County's board of supervisors voted unanimously to approve a resolution declaring that county police will not enforce state-level gun laws that violate Second Amendment rights.

[...]

In an attempt to appease citizen resistance, Northam suggested there would be a ban on only the sales of semi-automatic rifles. He would allow gun owners to keep their current AR-15s and similar rifles as long as they registered them. Otherwise, they must surrender the rifles. I'd urge Virginians not to fall for the registration trick. Knowing who owns what weapons is the first step to confiscation. Governor Northam further warned, "If we have constitutional laws on the books and law enforcement officers are not enforcing those laws on the books, then there are going to be consequences, but I'll cross that bridge if and when we get to it." Some Democratic lawmakers on Capitol Hill say that local police who do not enforce gun control laws should face prosecution and even threats of the use of the National Guard.

The entire article is here: https://townhall.com/columnists/walterewilliams/2019/12/25/virginias-second-amendment-attack-n2558511 Chad Cubbage, quoted in the article, was interviewed on Fox News regarding the matter, and while he sounded shy and diffident, you could still tell he was serious about the matter and is a man you would not want to cross.

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Mary and Joseph and Jesus were NOT Refugees

This from Warner Todd Houston

Joseph and Mary Were NOT ‘Refugees,’ ‘Immigrants,’ or ‘Homeless’–Stop Saying They Were

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Isreal's Prime Minister sends his Christmas greetings to Christians around the world

Dana Mathewson

This is bound to explode more than a few leftists' heads, for which I say Praise the Lord. Benjamin Netanyahu has always known who his friends are, and thanks them in this short but heartfelt video: https://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2019/12/netanyahus-merry-christmas.php

Take that, all you anti-Semites in the U.S. Government. You know who you are, and should be roundly ashamed of yourselves. Here's hoping the voters turn you out on your collective ears in 2020!

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December 24, 2019

The Annunciation

The Birth of Jesus Foretold

26In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, 27to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. 28The angel went to her and said, "Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.”

29Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. 30But the angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary; you have found favor with God. 31You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus. 32He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, 33and he will reign over Jacob’s descendants forever; his kingdom will never end.”

34"How will this be,” Mary asked the angel, "since I am a virgin?”

35The angel answered, "The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called[a] the Son of God. 36Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be unable to conceive is in her sixth month. 37For no word from God will ever fail.”

38"I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. "May your word to me be fulfilled.” Then the angel left her.

Luke 1: 23-38

The Magnificat Luke 1:46-55:

My soul magnifies the Lord
And my spirit rejoices in God my Savior;
Because He has regarded the lowliness of His handmaid;
For behold, henceforth all generations shall call me blessed;
Because He who is mighty has done great things for me,
and holy is His name;
And His mercy is from generation to generation
on those who fear Him.
He has shown might with His arm,
He has scattered the proud in the conceit of their heart.
He has put down the mighty from their thrones,
and has exalted the lowly.
He has filled the hungry with good things,
and the rich He has sent away empty.
He has given help to Israel, his servant, mindful of His mercy
Even as he spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and to his posterity forever.

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Or Else I Will Strike the Land with Destruction

Timothy Birdnow

On this Christmas Eve morning I think it profitable to remember the ending of the Old Testament. The Book of Malachi ended with a dreadful warning:

"Surely the day is coming; it will burn like a furnace. All the arrogant and every evildoer will be stubble, and the day that is coming will set them on fire,” says the Lord Almighty. "Not a root or a branch will be left to them. 2 But for you who revere my name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its rays. And you will go out and frolic like well-fed calves. 3 Then you will trample on the wicked; they will be ashes under the soles of your feet on the day when I act,” says the Lord Almighty.

4 "Remember the law of my servant Moses, the decrees and laws I gave him at Horeb for all Israel.

5 "See, I will send the prophet Elijah to you before that great and dreadful day of the Lord comes. 6 He will turn the hearts of the parents to their children, and the hearts of the children to their parents; or else I will come and strike the land with total destruction.”

And there was silence for four hundred years.

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Putting Aliens First!

Timothy Birdnow

St. Louis has established a program to get high paying career jobs for immigrants.

The emphasis is on people with experience and education.

Well,  bully!  Of course, by helping foreigners get these jobs they are discriminating against native born Americans.  But hey!  You have to break a few eggs to make an omelet!

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Hunter Biden Still on Chinese Board

Timothy Birdnow

Yes, Virginia, Hunter Biden remains on the board of a Chinese equity firm despite promises to quit by October.

From the article:

Hunter Biden’s lawyer said he had resigned his seat on the board of BHR Partners; however, the lawyer did not provide the Daily Caller News Foundation any evidence of his departure.

Hunter Biden was listed as an active director of BHR Partners in the firm’s file on China’s National Enterprise Credit Information Publicity Systemwhen accessed on Nov. 1 by the DCNF. The most recent change to the firm occurred on Sept. 18, according to BHR’s business records.

First, what qualifies Hunter Biden for this position?

Second, why isn't the mainstream media reporting any of this?

The stench of corruption permeates the Bidens.

BTW Hunter Biden owns a home in Beverly Hills worth two and a half million bucks. This from a guy who is the least qualified person in any room. Now where do you suppose all that money came from? Anybody?

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Democrats Support Trump District Court Nomination

Timothy Birdnow

Oh, this can't be good!

Trump nominates McGlynn for federal judgeship, Democratic lawmakers voice support

Here's the kicker:

In response to the announcement, U.S. Senators Tammy Duckworth and Dick Durbin, both Democrats, released a joint statement endorsing the pick.

"We are pleased that the President has nominated Judge Stephen McGlynn,” the statement said. "He has the qualifications, integrity and judgment to serve with distinction as a district court judge in the Southern District of Illinois. We appreciate the Administration’s willingness to work with us and with our nonpartisan screening committee to reach consensus on nominees who will serve the people of Illinois well. We look forward to guiding his nomination through the Senate.”

If radicals like Duckworth and "Turban" James Durbin support this guy he's bad news, Republican or no.

There is no value in just having an R after someone's name. We need people who will return America to the Constitutional principles of the Founders. I seriously doubt this man is that person.

Mr. Trump needs to do a better job of hiring in general. He's done fairly well by listening to the Heritage Foundation and the like, but he doesn't always do that. His picks for important offices - idiots like Rex Tillerson for Secretary of State - have often been disastrous. Now he's starting to screw up the judges!  That we cannot allow; judges remain in office forever.

I think we should push Trump to reconsider this. If the Democrats like this guy we're in big trouble!

BTW, the Hon. McGlynn received good marks on the Illinois Bar Association judicial poll. He was the only Republican to score as acceptable by the left wing bar association. That speaks volumes about this creep.

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Venus Envy

Timothy Birdnow

Astronomers have found a planet the size of Earth "right next door".

Gee, I guess they didn't realize Venus was right over there.

According to Science Alerts:

"Here we present the discovery of GJ 1252 b, a small planet orbiting an M dwarf. The planet was initially discovered as a transiting planet candidate using TESS data," the researchers write.

"Based on the TESS data and additional follow-up data we are able to reject all false positive scenarios, showing it is a real planet."

GJ 1252 b is around 1.2 times the size of Earth, and around twice Earth's mass (so a bit denser than our home planet). It's orbiting a red dwarf star called GJ 1252, which is a little scrap of a thing, around 40 percent of the size and mass of the Sun.

The exoplanet whips around its star once every 12.4 hours - way too close for habitability, and probably tidally locked, where one side is always facing the star - but that tight orbit makes it attractive for another reason.

 

At just 66.5 light-years away, the system is at a close-enough distance that the star is bright enough for those follow-up observations we mentioned. In addition, the red dwarf is unusually calm for a star of its type; and the fact that the planet orbits it so often means there are plenty of opportunities to catch it moving in front of its host.

This is called a transit, and if the planet has an atmosphere, it will be back-lit by the star's light during transits, potentially allowing astronomers to see what's in it using spectroscopic observations.

I wouldn't call sixty six and a half light years "next door", but it's close on an astronomical scale.

It would be absolutely uninhabitable - at least on the surface. A red dwarf usually has a strong solar wind, and that would strip away all the atmosphere. Also, almost all red dwarf stars are flare suns. Our own sun is a mild flare sun, nowhere near as active as most red dwarves. And at the close range of a planet like this, a solar flare would wipe out all life even if the place had an atmosphere.

The only really interesting thing about this discovery is that this planet is not a "super Earth' at four times the size of Earth but is just a little bit larger. And we were able to find it.

One thing is clear; the Star Trek vision of habitable planets all over the place just isn't so. There are lots of planets but I suspect finding truly Earthlike worlds is going to be really difficult.

We are going to need to learn to live in environments very different to what we have known. We are going to have to find a way to settle on moons and small planets, for instance, and live with low gravity. We are going to have to figure out how to live on asteroids and build space settlements. We can spin those for gravity (although a carbonaceous asteroid may just be a bunch of gravel and will fall apart if we try to spin it.  We may eventually learn to live in zero g entirely. But we aren't going to be able to count on some pleasant planet that just happens to be a new Earth.

Of course, by the time we figure out a way to get between stars in years rather than centuries we'll have learned to live anywhere - and probably will be living everywhere.

Or, we could follow the advice of the modern luddites and give up technology, let ninety percent of our people die, and wind up living in a new neolithic.  And then die when an asteroid or some other bad thing hits the Earth.


Posted by: Timothy Birdnow at 08:56 AM | Comments (3) | Add Comment
Post contains 645 words, total size 4 kb.

Churches Going Through the Motions

Timothy Birdnow

My cousin Ellen forwards this.

Why Catholic Homilies are so Short and Light on Scripture

I don't mind short, but I hate the content-free character of them. I don't remember the last time I heard anyone mention sin, or heaven, or hell, or soul. They are all sort of like diet coke; just one calorie! Basically a kindergarten exhortation.

I suspect it ties in with the tax exemption, for one. Lyndon Johnson was getting hammered by the churches and so he increased the tax exemption BUT made it so churches could only get it if they stayed entirely out of politics. So that avenue was closed.

Of course, there is also now a desire to coax people in rather than to do what Jesus did and proclaim the Truth and let the chips fall where they may. And the more the pews empty the more they double down on the very thing emptying pews. After all, who wants to go to church when you can enjoy a football game or whatnot? There has to be something more to draw people.

The Church is afraid of the World. It wants to befriend the world, to be a major institution at the bedrock of civilization. But that is not what the Church was or is or ever will be; Jesus made it quite plain His Church would always be at odds with  the World. "If the World hates you remember it hated Me first" John 1518.

A Church that is not making some people quite angry is failing at it's mission. Of course, there is great contempt for the Church among the public now, but that is the contempt one holds for a loser. Catholicism in particular but so many of the Protestant churches as well are, to put it blundly, losers, lickspittle suckups who are embarrassed about their faith. You  cannot build something of importance, something that will last, on Barney the Dinosaur polemics.

So they cut the sermons down and do not use much scripture, hoping to entice the lazy and the uncommitted. But why?  Jesus commanded that if a town does not receive you shake the dust of the town from your feet and move on. HE wanted only to offer rthe Word, then if the people did not accept it that was their problem. Jesus never coaxed.

Jesus rightly knew coaxing was pointless. The World has more pleasant things to offer. Jesus just had the Truth, and Eternal Life to offer. Far greater things, but not to the carnally minded man.

The Churches are just going through the motions these days.

Posted by: Timothy Birdnow at 07:58 AM | Comments (2) | Add Comment
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