How Many Communists In the State Department?

How Many Communists In the State Department?
Vol: 110 Issue: 30 Tuesday, November 30, 2010

In the 1964 movie, The Manchurian Candidate, one of the lead characters was a politician named Johnny Iselin, played by veteran actor James Gregory.

Johnny Islein was a fictionalized caricature of Wisconsin Senator Joe McCarthy. In the movie, Iselin would make up facts and figures like, “There are 207 card-carrying members of the Communist Party in the US State Department.” 

When challenged, he would harrumph and spit out some new number instead.  His handler explained to him (and the audience) that the idea wasn’t to be accurate, but to keep changing up the facts to keep the fact-checkers off-balance.

So one time there would be 207 card-carrying Communists in the State Department and then the next there would be 85 card-carry Communists at the Pentagon, and so on.

(Or something along those lines – I’m working from memory). 

What triggered the memory, however, was a column in the UK Telegraph about the latest United Nations Climate Change Conference in Cancun, Mexico.

Remember when Al Gore warned of rising seas and disappearing coastlines if the temperature went up a mere 2 degrees? Depending on whom you asked, the melting ice would cause sea levels to rise as much at twenty feet.  Or six feet.  Or two feet.

“How many Communists are there in the State Department?”

Once the Climategate scandal broke and the world learned that the world headquarters of global warming research at East Anglia in Great Britain had been “cooking” the raw data that everybody else was basing their predictions on, Gore’s “Inconvenient Truth” was moved from the “documentary” to the “fiction” categories.

“There are exactly, er, 203, I mean 107, I mean, ladies and gentlemen, I’m late for an appointment. . . “

“In a series of papers published by the Royal Society, physicists and chemists from some of world’s most respected scientific institutions, including Oxford University and the Met Office, agreed that current plans to tackle global warming are not enough.

Unless emissions are reduced dramatically in the next ten years the world is set to see temperatures rise by more than 4C (7.2F) by as early as the 2060s, causing floods, droughts and mass migration.”

It is worth noting at this point that the East Anglia University was also one of the ‘world’s most respected scientific institutions’ on climate change, that it was also headquartered in Great Britain and is also a member of the Royal Society.

Great Britain is the birthplace of the Great Global Warming Swindle,  (both the swindle and the movie) which is itself an object lesson in the Law of Unintended Consequences.

In an effort to overcome environmentalist objections to expanding Great Britain’s nuclear power generating stations, Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher offered government grants to institutions that could prove a relationship between fossil fuel consumption and global warming.

The institutions that accepted the grants soon discovered the evidence necessary to get more grants and the more evidence they ‘discovered’ the more grants they got.  

Since it was getting warmer for a time, what had begun as a British government’s application of the Hegelian Dialectic to the problem of green opposition to nuclear power ultimately became a cash cow for anybody who cared to milk it.

But there is still considerable power (and profit) to be had and that is reason that the whole “climate change” fad hasn’t faded away. 

Especially among the British, where pagan earth worship is probably as widely practiced as Christianity, and among the globalists seeking a common threat to unite humanity under one government.

The UK Telegraph piece reveals quite a bit about what the globalists intend to use global warming hysteria to that end:

“In one paper Professor Kevin Anderson, Director of the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research, said the only way to reduce global emissions enough, while allowing the poor nations to continue to grow, is to halt economic growth in the rich world over the next twenty years.

This would mean a drastic change in lifestyles for many people in countries like Britain as everyone will have to buy less ‘carbon intensive’ goods and services such as long haul flights and fuel hungry cars.

Prof Anderson admitted it “would not be easy” to persuade people to reduce their consumption of goods

He said politicians should consider a rationing system similar to the one introduced during the last “time of crisis” in the 1930s and 40s.

This could mean a limit on electricity so people are forced to turn the heating down, turn off the lights and replace old electrical goods like huge fridges with more efficient models. Food that has travelled from abroad may be limited and goods that require a lot of energy to manufacture.

“The Second World War and the concept of rationing is something we need to seriously consider if we are to address the scale of the problem we face,” he said.”

There is only one thing missing from the equation.  Who will do the rationing? 

Who will halt economic growth for the rich for twenty years while allowing poor nations to grow (so they can be exploited when the ‘rich’ have been exhausted)?   

Who will decide who is ‘rich’ and who is not?  

Assessment:

Cancun is probably the most fittingly-named place on Planet Earth for a place to host the UN’s latest Climate Change Conference.  In pre-Hispanic language of the region, “Cancun” means “nest of serpents.”  

Earlier this year, a conference of scientists and policy makers met in Chicago to hear from experts challenging the UN’s elusive and ever-changing global warming scenarios.

Speaking at the 4th International Conference on Climate Change were a number of actual scientists who point to a coming period of global cooling, including Professor Don Easterbrook of Western Washington University.

Professor Easterbrook pointed out the obvious —  that there will be twice as many people killed by extreme cold than by extreme heat, and that global food production will suffer due to shorter, cooler growing seasons and crop destruction from bad weather. (See herehere, here, and here.)

As for the rising sea levels, there are plenty of scientists willing to refute the claim but what fascinates me is that anyone needs to. 

This is an experiment you can try at home.  Fill a glass with ice cubes.  Pour water (or any liquid of your choice) over the ice, filling the glass to the brim. 

Watch the glass but don’t touch it while the ice slowly melts in the glass.   (Let me know if the glass overflows as the water level rises.)  

The real culprit for global warming is and has always been the sun.  The evidence is overwhelming.  There is an equally simple experiment to prove this as fact. Try standing in the same place at noon and then again at midnight and note the temperature changes.

But if that is too simple, then there is the fact that the Sun has been undergoing previously-unheard of fluctuations that have resulted in similar temperature fluctuations on other planets to consider.  

Pluto has been experiencing global warming and NASA has also been recording massive climate change on Trion, Neptune’s largest moon.

Global warming is a complete fraud but there will always be True Believers for whom no amount of contradictory evidence will be satisfactory.  It is much like a religion in that it divides people into True Believers, heretics, apostates and unbelievers. 

The Apostle Paul explained how it works.  They are True Believers, but their faith is in mankind and man’s ability to determine and regulate what is best for the planet.  

Even if it means starving off a significant portion of the population.  Or establishing a balance of power between rich countries and poor — by impoverishing the rich.   

“And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient,” Paul writes to the Romans.

As to how there can still be so many willing to believe a lie so monstrous that it can call for the extermination of millions without raising much of an outcry, Paul explained that, too.

“And for THIS cause God shall send them strong delusion that they should believe a lie.”

Which cause is that? Because they received not the love of the truth.  Paul explains that they preferred the lie.

“That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.”

It isn’t a matter of science.  It is a matter of faith.  Faith in man. Or faith in God.  It isn’t hard to tell which side is God’s side. 

That’s the side that says “While the earth remaineth, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease.” (Genesis 8:22)

Then there is the other side. The ones given over to a reprobate mind.  Jesus spoke of them specifically.

“And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; Men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.”

And I think He also specifically mentioned Cancun.

Fresh Frozen Jumbo Shrimp

Fresh Frozen Jumbo Shrimp
Vol: 110 Issue: 29 Monday, November 29, 2010

It is hard to decide, as we open the books on this week, which is the more pressing story.  A Somali-born American citizen tried to blow up a bunch of Christmas revelers (mostly women and children) in Portland, Oregon.

North Korea is but one provocation away from triggering a war in Asia that will undoubtedly draw in Japan, China and the United States.  As tensions escalate and with North Korea threatening a ‘merciless attack’ China is trying to restart the failed disarmament talks.

The Israelis are so frustrated with the United States over its position on the peace talks that they are beginning to look toward Europe, an unthinkable option only a few years ago.  

If there was ever a time when America needed a strong diplomatic hand, it is now.   That’s why the Wikileaks story tops the list this morning.  Whatever diplomatic cards used to be there, they’re all gone now. 

I’ve been fascinated by efforts, particularly among the Left in the mainstream, to minimize the damage by claiming the leaks expose nothing more than harmless gossip. 

First off, “harmless” and “gossip” are words that don’t belong together, like “military intelligence” or “fresh frozen jumbo shrimp.”  

Gossip is anything but harmless.  According to the Apostle James, few things are more destructive:

“Even so the tongue is a little member, and boasteth great things. Behold, how great a matter a little fire kindleth! And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell.  For every kind of beasts, and of birds, and of serpents, and of things in the sea, is tamed, and hath been tamed of mankind:  But the tongue can no man tame; it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison.” (James 3:5-8)

The Wikileaks document dump don’t reveal that America’s diplomatic corps consists of idle gossipers better suited to a kaffeeklatch – it reveals how untrustworthy America is to do business with.  

Not that US trustworthiness comes as much of a surprise. Pretty much every nation that has put its faith in the word of Uncle Sam since the conclusion of World War Two has come to regret it, from Seoul to Hanoi to Baghdad to Kabul.    

But this time around, the whole world has reason for regret, with the notable exceptions of countries like Venezuela, Iran and North Korea, who said we were a nation of back-stabbing weasels all along – even before Julian Assange offered 250,000 pages of supporting evidence.

The Left is claiming that the Wikileaks dump was really a public service.  I actually heard a lawyer lady say that on Fox News on Sunday.   

If by ‘public’ she means the enemies of the United States, then it is a public service.  But for the people of the United States, this is a catastrophe of as-yet unrealized proportions. 

The document dump has arguably done US security more damage than anything bin-Laden and his band of merry men have been able to accomplish.

Some senators are calling for Assange’s arrest and prosecution.  Under the rules of assymetrical warfare, Assange represents a clear and present danger to the security of the United States.  

In a saner world, prosecution would be the least of Assange’s worries.  

But this isn’t a sane world.  

Assessment:

 “If only we could say publicly what we hear behind closed doors,” Israeli officials would comment, following off-record talks they held with Arab leaders throughout the Middle East.”

Prime Minister Netanyahu was quick to announce that the exposure of US secret diplomatic cables didn’t hurt Israel.  The leaks vindicated Israel’s positions on the Palestinians, Hamas, Iran and Hezbollah.

“More and more countries realize that Iran is the central threat, but the countries in the region have a gap because they publicly are attached to the Israeli-Arab conflict but privately they realize that this narrative is not true. They realize that the central threat is from Iran and now this has been revealed even though it was known,” the prime minister said.

Netanyahu highlighted that “the question is where this leads. If they continue to not say it publicly, it won’t help. But if they start saying it publicly, it can pave the road to peace.”

“It can eliminate the theory that Israel is the obstacle to peace and show that we have mutual interests,” Netanyahu said.

The leaked cables included exhortations from Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain and Jordan to the United States about Iran’s nuclear program:

“Saudi King Abdullah “frequently exhorted the US to attack Iran to put an end to its nuclear weapons program” and to “cut off the head of the snake”.  

“That program must be stopped,” said King Hamad of Bahrain.  “The danger of letting it go on is greater than the danger of stopping it.”

Israel could never get away with comments about Iran as extreme as those expressed in Arab capitals without incurring immediate global condemnation.  

That adds a whole new dimension to the damage Wikileaks has done to US credibility from the Israeli perspective.

The leaks show that Washington allowed Israel to take the pasting that it did from the United Nations following the 2006 Lebanon war, knowing full well the extent of Iran’s involvement but saying nothing in Israel’s defense.

The US knew that Iranian Revolutionary Guardsmen were operating inside Lebanon disguised as officials of the “Red Crescent” and was using medical supply lines to facilitate weapons shipments.

The US knew that Iran had taken delivery of missiles from North Korea capable of striking Europe.  The US knew that Saudi Arabia is the chief financier of al-Qaeda

Think about this for a minute.  Revealing the contents of America’s secret diplomatic cables has caused damage and embarrassment to virtually all of America’s erstwhile political ‘allies’ in the Middle East, Europe and almost every other nation that has had intimate diplomatic relations with the United States. 

But the secrets that America had been keeping about Israel practically gave the Israelis cause for celebration! 

The secrets America had been keeping about Israel would have shown the Goldstone Report for the anti-Semitic travesty that it was.

What America knew about Israeli conduct during the Second Lebanon War would have shown the anti-Israel bias of UN Resolution 1701 that allowed Iran to re-arm and re-equip Hezbollah without fear of interference from UNFIL or the Lebanese Army.

But America kept these helpful facts secret and allowed the Israelis to twist over the UN’s roasting pit, all the while claiming that Washington had Israel’s best interests at heart.   

That is why I believe that the Wikileaks story dwarfs the Somali terrorists and the North Korean artillerymen and the inscrutable Chinese politicians and even Barack Obama’s fat lip.  

“And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee . . .” (Genesis 12:3)

Ten years ago, America was at relative peace.  The stock market was shooting up like a thermometer in August. The budge deficit was paid off.  The debt clock had started running backwards.  Unemployment was at an all-time low and things couldn’t look better.

After Osama bin Laden attacked on September 11 however, America’s ruling class began to rethink the price of unconditional support for Israel.  

The more it was rethought, the more it was revised until the State Department concluded that the best way to help Israel live in peace was to support the creation of a terrorist state on its borders. 

Things haven’t exactly been coming up roses for us since. 

Reasons To Believe

Reasons To Believe
Vol: 110 Issue: 27 Saturday, November 27, 2010

The Bible contains sixty-six different books, written by forty different men, most of whom lived and died in different centuries, in different countries, many of them unaware of other prophets or other prophecies.

The writers of the Bible were shepherds and kings, statesmen and beggars.

All the Bible’s writers were ‘non-profit prophets’ — being a prophet of God was not a sought-after job; most prophets lived miserably and died painfully. Most, like Jeremiah, tried to talk God out of hiring them.

Yet with all of that, every book blends seamlessly into the rest, both the books that came before, and those that came AFTER. Some books of the Bible quote other books not yet written at that time. Others quote earlier prophets or sacred writing, but all are harmonious with one another.

The writing of the Scripture is nothing short of miraculous in and of itself. Its preservation over the centuries is mind-boggling, if you let yourself think about it. You and I have both experienced discussions with non-believers convinced they can prove the Bible is wrong.

They rail and babble and quote everybody EXCEPT the Scriptures, and in the end, come away as convinced as when they went in. Or get mad and just go away.

Think how many times similar conversations take place around the world, every single day.

Then, take a look at the broader view: In every generation since its compilation, the Bible has been the subject of discussion between believers and non-believers.

In every generation, non-believers have made it their mission in life to disprove the Scriptures.

Any discrepancy has been analyzed and re-analyzed by both friend and foe, read and re-read, argued and re-argued, in a million conversations over thousands of years.

Whoever successfully proved the Bible wrong on any point; doctrine, history, archeology, law, medicine, science, or geography would have single-handedly destroyed the basic foundation of the Judeo-Christian ethic.

The Bible says of itself, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.” (2 Timothy 3:16)

A Book that claims to contain perfect knowledge and perfect accuracy sets a very high bar for itself.  A Book that maintains that standard of knowledge and accuracy over the course of centuries — while under constant attack! — fair-minded logic demands it be accepted as perfect until proven otherwise.

It requires wilful suspension of reality to argue otherwise under such circumstances.   

The Bible is wholly consistent with known science. The book of Isaiah said the earth was round tens of centuries before Columbus.

“It is He that sitteth upon the circle of the earth. . .” (Isaiah 40:22)

Ecclesiates 1:6 reveals that the winds move in cyclonic patterns and Job tells us that light is in motion (Job 38:19-20) thousands of years before weather satellites and Einstein’s calculations proved both to be true.

Medically, the Bible tells us the chemical nature of human life (Genesis 2:7, 3:19) that the life of creatures are in the blood (Leviticus 17:11), the nature of infectious diseases (Leviticus 13:46) and the importance of sanitation to health (Numbers 19, Deuteronomy 23:12-13, Leviticus 7-9) many thousands of years before doctors were still practicing blood-letting as a treatment for disease.

The list goes on. Every historical event described by the Bible has either been confirmed by other sources, or has yet to be confirmed. Not a single historical event described by Scripture has ever conclusively been disproved.

Sometimes, it is necessary to go back and take another look at the Source and meditate on just what a miracle it is in order to get a clearer understanding of what it says. It helps to reconfirm that everything it says is true.

Despite thousands of years of editorial criticism, the Bible stands essentially unchanged from when it was first given.

A complete copy of the Book of Isaiah was unearthed as part of the Dead Sea Scroll treasures and is today enshrined in the Dome of the Tablets in Jerusalem. I have personally seen it and marveled at the fact its date could NOT be questioned.

It could NOT be younger than the day it was buried in AD 70.

But, apart from grammatical changes made necessary by changes in Hebrew grammar over the centuries, it reads exactly the same way as the Book of Isaiah in your own Bible.

It makes sense to assume the rest of the Scriptures are equally accurate, since there is no evidence to the contrary and all the available evidence supports Scripture.

The Bible’s accuracy is not limited to history, geography, science or medicine. It is equally accurate in describing the events that have not yet taken place.

The prophecies of the Bible are, from God’s perspective, ALREADY history. “. . .yea, I have spoken it, I will also bring it to pass; I have purposed it, I will also do it.” (Isaiah 46:11)

So not only does the God of the Bible know all things, but He has chosen to make known to us, through the Bible, what is still to come! In fact, even more than that, the God of the Bible CHALLENGES any so-called ‘gods’ to do the same.

“Produce your cause, saith the LORD; bring forth your strong reasons, saith the King of Jacob. Let them bring them forth, and shew us what shall happen: let them shew the former things, what they be, that we may consider them, and know the latter end of them; or declare us things for to come. Shew the things that are to come hereafter, that we may know that ye are gods: yea, do good, or do evil, that we may be dismayed, and behold it together.” (Isaiah 41:21:23)

From God’s perspective, outside of space and time, everything is now, so to speak. God’s historical pronouncements are given from the benefit of Divine Hindsight. His prophetic pronouncements also enjoy the benefit of Divine Hindsight.

The Bible describes the future, but to God, it has already happened, if you can follow that line of reasoning for a minute. Since to God, it already happened, the events that remain yet future will be fulfilled as specifically as those events that have already come to pass.

Including His promise: “I will not leave you Comfortless.  I will come to you.” (John 14:18)

Maranatha!

The Wikileaks Catastrophe

The Wikileaks Catastrophe
Vol: 110 Issue: 26 Friday, November 26, 2010

It was a good idea in theory; Wikileaks founder Julian Assange claims that the purpose of his website was to ensure that “good triumphs over evil.” 

And it would still be a good idea – provided Julian Assange’s definitions of good and evil were the same as mine. But alas, they are not. 

Indeed, Julian Assange’s definitions of good and evil are mirror images of mine, turning evil into good and good into evil. (That means woe unto somebody for sure.)

Assange, who could be devoting his efforts to exposing al-Qaeda terrorists or Mexican drug lords or North Korean dictators, has instead decided that the United States is the greater evil.

So this past July, WikiLeaks published more than 76,900 documents on the U.S.-led war in Afghanistan, and then in October it released about 400,000 documents connected with the war in Iraq. 

I found the following assessment of the Wikileaks catastrophe in, of all places, the Moscow Times:

“The only problem is that Assange’s leaks make it easier for the Taliban to capture, torture and kill the secret informants in Afghanistan who are working for the U.S. military. For this, al-Qaeda counterintelligence should bestow Assange the Bin Laden Award for outstanding service in the fight against U.S. infidels.

Making his contribution to the fight against the global center of evil and tyranny, Assange decided not to linger long in any one place. In September, he flew from Stockholm to Berlin, checking his bags containing three laptop computers with encrypted information. The computers disappeared, and the computer wonder boy was shocked.

“We have been attacked by the United States,” he complained to a New York Times reporter.”

In the aftermath of the “attack” on Wikileaks “by the United States,” Assange needs to buy three new laptops and avoid Sweden until the rape charges blow over.

Some “attack”.  Anyway, as the Moscow Times’ piece goes on to point out, in any case, Assange attacked the US first

Assange clearly wants to be seen as a courageous crusader against evil and corruption.  He likes to be called the “Robin Hood of hackers”.  

But why go after the United States instead of Iran, or al-Qaeda or North Korea or the Mexican drug cartel?

Well, if he had, he’d be dead already.  That’s an excellent reason. 

Wikileaks announced on Monday through its website that it is about to dump another wad of secret intelligence information that it claims is seven times the size of the previous dumps about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Since the announcement, US diplomats around the world are visiting their host governments to warn them that the most intimate secrets they’ve shared with the United States government are about to show up on the internet.

The cables, for instance, could reveal that senior government officials in other countries are the sources of embarrassing information about the inner workings of those governments, thus making it more difficult for the State Department to obtain such intelligence in the future, noted the Washington Post.

“Without getting into specifics, typical cables describe summaries of meetings, analysis of events in other countries and records of confidential conversations with officials of other governments and with members of civil society,” said State Department spokesman PJ Crowley. “They are classified for a very good reason. They contain sensitive information and reveal sources of information that impact our national interests and those of other countries.”

Crowley added that “the lives of people who provide us valuable information and perspective are being put at risk. They help us understand what is happening around the world and inform our policies and actions.”

With spectacular understatement, Crowley noted that the release of the documents will “probably” erode trust in the United States as a diplomatic partner. 

U.S. ambassador to Canada David Jacobson phoned Minister of Foreign Affairs Lawrence Cannon to inform him of the matter, the Foreign Affairs department told the Canadian Press.

Canadian Foreign Affairs spokeswoman Melissa Lantsman said the Canadian Embassy in Washington is “currently engaging” with the State Department on damage control.

The CBC noted that U.S. officials say the documents may contain accounts of compromising conversations with political dissidents and friendly politicians and could result in the expulsion of U.S. diplomats from foreign postings. 

That can’t be good.  But it gets worse.

In Australia, the Department of Foreign Affairs and other agencies in Canberra, including the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet, met to discuss the leaks, which a senior Australian government official said had prompted a “strong measure of concern,” according to the Australian newspaper.

“The whole thing is pretty big,” the official said, (proving that American diplomats have no corner on understatement.)

The US Embassy in Tel Aviv has informed the Israeli Prime Minister’s office that some of its most embarrassing secrets are soon to be handed over to its enemies worldwide. 

The London-based newspaper Al Hayat reported yesterday that the documents show that the Turkish government allowed money and weapons to flow across the border into Iraq in support of Al Qaeda forces there.  

Obama kicked off his World Apology Tour 2009 with a speech to the Muslim world delivered from Turkey in which Obama wanted his agenda to be perfectly clear:

“Make no mistake, though: Iraq, Turkey, and the United States face a common threat from terrorism. That includes the al Qaeda terrorists who have sought to drive Iraqis apart and to destroy their country. That includes the PPK.”

The PPK is a Kurdish independence group seeking to carve a homeland out of parts of Turkey, Iran and Iraq.  It has been designated by the US State Department as a terrorist organization.

Among the documents about to be released by Wikileaks is a US military document referring to the PPK. ”warriors for freedom and Turkish citizens” and said the US had set free arrested PKK members in Iraq.

The documents also say that US forces in Iraq have given weapons to the PKK.

Awkward.

Assessment:

Although Wikileaks has been around since 2006, it wasn’t until after Obama took office that Wikileaks suddenly developed a pipeline into the super-secret inner workings of the United States government, the US diplomatic corps and the Pentagon.

According to the Obama administration, the source of all this damaging information about the United States is a traitorous super-spy who the government says had access to all these top-secret ultra-krypto eyes-only diplomatic cables and secret Pentagon war reports.

The traitorous super-spy that provided Wikileaks with something close to eight million different top-secret documents from all these different agencies is a 22 year-old Private First Class named Bradley Manning.

That’s their story and they are sticking to it.  

An insane conspiracy theorist, or maybe a ‘birther’ or a racist might connect the dots and come up with a plot that links the document dump to an organized effort to collapse the current system in order to fundamentally transform it.  

But not me.  Nope. I believe that a 22 year-old gay Army private was given access to more inter-agency top secret intelligence that the 9/11 Commission determined was available to CIA Director George Tenant in the months leading up to the attacks.

It would be crazy to think that it goes any higher up the chain of command than PFC Bradley.  Why, I remember the unrestricted access to top-secret ultra-krypto intelligence files that I had when I was a PFC in the Marine Corps . . . 

(Actually, I didn’t have clearance to see my own Service Record Book.  Neither did any other PFC I ever met. Especially not one whose known sexual preference made him an automatic target for blackmail and therefore a classic security risk. )

But there is no way I am going to risk being labeled a racist or a Tea Bag or a birther or a conspiracist by noting the timeline during which Assange’s pipeline into America’s secret files opened up and suggesting some connection. 

Nope. Others might.  But not me.  I wouldn’t even allow myself to think something like that. That would be crazy talk.

Wouldn’t it?

The Thanksgiving Whale

The Thanksgiving Whale
Vol: 110 Issue: 25 Thursday, November 25, 2010

The first official Thanksgiving Day proclamation on the US continent was issued on June 20, 1676 by the governing council of the Charlestown settlement in present-day Massachusetts.  

The occasion was the continuing existence of the Charlestown settlement, which had the previous winter been very much in doubt.

The first American Thanksgiving proclamation was issued by George Washington.  Issued October 3, 1789, it proposed Thursday, November 26, 1789 as a “Day of Public Thanksgiving and Prayer.”

Over the course of the next seventy-four years, Thanksgiving was observed by different states at different times according to region.  There was no unifying, national day of Thanksgiving until Abraham Lincoln proclaimed a national day of Thanksgiving.

Lincoln’s proclamation, issued October 3, 1863 was issued during the darkest days of the American Civil War, only weeks after the carnage of Gettysburg and Union losses at Chancellorsville and Chickamauga.

“Population has steadily increased, notwithstanding the waste that has been made in the camp, the siege and the battle-field; and the country, rejoicing in the consciousness of augmented strength and vigor, is permitted to expect continuance of years with large increase of freedom. No human counsel hath devised nor hath any mortal hand worked out these great things. They are the gracious gifts of the Most High God, who, while dealing with us in anger for our sins, hath nevertheless remembered mercy.”

Lincoln’s proclamation set aside the last Thursday of November as the day that Americans, both at home and abroad, to give thanks to Almighty God for His Mercy and to beg for His aid in preserving the Union.

Lincoln’s proclamation, issued one hundred and forty-seven years ago, was both a proclamation and a prayer.  The prayer was for the Union’s preservation.  The proclamation was one of thanksgiving for answered prayer, expressing Lincoln’s confidence that God is a prayer-answering God.

The continued preservation of the Union, through the Civil War, two World Wars, the Cold War and two Depressions, stand as living testimony that our God remains a prayer answering God as long as we remain a thanks-giving people.

This is why Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday.  I also believe that, for America, Thanksgiving Day is the most important holiday of the year.  

It all has to do with the Thanksgiving Whale.

Assessment:

Jonah was instructed by God to travel to Nineveh to proclaim judgment against the great city.  But Jonah refuses and boards a ship headed the other way for Tarshish. 

This is the part when the sea erupts and Jonah finally tells the crew to cast him into the sea before they are all drowned.

Jonah is then miraculously preserved in the belly of a great sea creature (Jonah calls it a fish, but Jesus identifies it as a whale) for three days and three nights.

From inside the whale’s belly, Jonah was (quite understandably) thankful when he realized he wasn’t being digested. That must have been quite a moment.

In his gratitude, he repents and promises to obey God . . . and the sea creature then coughs him up on the shore of Nineveh. That’s the part of the Jonah story that gets all the attention.

And there’s a boatload of symbolism and messianic references and irony and other stuff that gets endlessly debated by scholars.   (Not to mention the whale.)

But this is a column about Thanksgiving, not whether or not Jonah was in a fish’s belly or a whale’s belly. 

So let’s pick up with Jonah on the beach. . . no doubt doubly thankful for dry land.

“And the Word of the Lord came until Jonah the second time, saying, Arise, go unto Nineveh, that great city, and preach unto it the preaching that I bid thee.”

And so Jonah, still faintly smelling like fish, headed off for Nineveh without argument. 

When he got there, he preached the message that Nineveh had forty days to live.  Forty days. Period. God said so.  That was it.  No conditional promises were made. 

“And Jonah began to enter into the city a day’s journey, and he cried, and said, Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown.”

Unexpectedly (for Jonah, who really despised the Ninevites) the people of Nineveh, the Scripture specifically notes, “believed God” and proclaimed a fast.  

“For word came unto the king of Nineveh, and he arose from his throne, and he laid his robe from him, and covered him with sackcloth, and sat in ashes. And he caused it to be proclaimed and published through Nineveh by the decree of the king and his nobles, saying, Let neither man nor beast, herd nor flock, taste any thing: let them not feed, nor drink water:

“But let man and beast be covered with sackcloth, and cry mightily unto God: yea, let them turn every one from his evil way, and from the violence that is in their hands. Who can tell if God will turn and repent, and turn away from his fierce anger, that we perish not?” (Jonah 3:5-9)

The Bible recounts that God did, of course, turn from His anger and spared Nineveh, which is the part of the story that brings us back to the importance of Thanksgiving to America.

God has already spared America – He did so when the nation was in peril of its survival unlike any time before or since. Think about it.

Had the Union been pulled asunder and the Confederacy established, the America of today would likely be a small, unimportant republic dominated by British Canada and the Dominion of the Southern Confederacy; surrounded by other small, relatively unimportant republics like Texas and California.

And so every year, on the last Thursday in November, we give thanks, by national proclamation, “to Almighty God for His aid in preserving the Union.” 

Because every year that we have, He did. And I am thankful for that. 

Every Thanksgiving, I realize that have more to be thankful for than I had the year before.

I am thankful beyond measure for each of you, my brothers and sisters of our Omega Letter Fellowship.  You are my treasured friends and my most powerful supporters.  Your prayers can move mountains — and they have. 

Our forums are filled with testimonials to the power of our prayers, one for another.  Your prayers for me are like an umbrella under which I regularly retreat for comfort and safety. 

I am grateful beyond measure for those prayers, the power of which have been demonstrated to me so often and so dramatically that I would be terrified to contemplate a day without them.   Thank you all for that.

Thank you for sharing your love and your friendship with me and with each other in our forums. It sustains me in ways I could never express.  

Thank you for the support and the challenges and the comments you take the time to share in the daily Omega Letter forums.   Thank you all for the undeserved respect you afford me there.  It is a wonderful place of refreshing that I could not bear to be without.

Thank You, Father, for Your Son.  Thank You for our victory in Jesus.  Thank You for our country and what remains of our freedom. Thank You for the hope for America that each Thanksgiving Day represents.  

Thank You for answered Prayer. 

Happy Thanksgiving Day, my beloved friends and family.   Enjoy your families and your friends and your freedoms.  Enjoy what God has given you.

God bless us every one.  And may God continue to bless America. 

Death By a Thousand Cuts

Death By a Thousand Cuts
Vol: 110 Issue: 24 Wednesday, November 24, 2010

One of the most horrifying forms of torture and execution one can imagine is the Chinese lingchi, literally translated as “the slow process” or the “death by a thousand cuts”.

It was an indescribably horrific process in which the condemned was executed over a matter of days by slowly slicing away body parts until the victim bled to death.  By the time of his death, the victim had been literally sliced into pieces.

Lingchi was practiced in China for almost a thousand years before being abolished in 1905.  But there is documented evidence of its application well into the twentieth century by Communist Chinese officials.

In the West, the “Death by a Thousand Cuts” became a metaphor for creeping incrementalism. That is the process by which major (and negative) changes come into existence — slowly, in unnoticed or seemingly benign increments.

One excellent Western example of how it works in practice would be the incremental erosion of individual liberty by the introduction of Political Correctness into the public discourse.  

It began as a kind of socially-enforced politeness – something was considered ‘politically incorrect’ if it caused offense. 

Political correctness began as an effort to minimize social and institutional offense in occupational, gender, racial, cultural, sexual orientation, disability, and age-related contexts.

But in increments over time, PC morphed into a kind of ‘cultural Marxism’ used to curtail free speech, foster intolerance, punish dissent and stigmatize ‘wrong’ thinking’. 

But in increments, it began to overtake the culture.  It was once reported that a school altered the nursery rhyme “Baa, Baa Black Sheep” to read “Baa, Baa, Rainbow Sheep” so it wouldn’t offend black, umm . . . .  sheep?   

I’ve never seen a rainbow sheep – or rainbow person, for that matter.  But it has cut our culture to pieces. 

And Lingchi is proved equally useful against nations. 

Assessment:

Yesterday, North Korea shelled the tiny South Korean island of Yeonpyeong in the Yellow Sea in what the US government called an ‘outrageous and unprovoked attack’. 

The UK Telegraph called it the worst attack against civilians in twenty years.

The attack, coupled with the unveiling over the weekend of a new light water nuclear reactor, equipped with a startlingly accomplished array of centrifuges, underlines North Korea’s continuing intransigence in the face of international pressure on it to disarm and cooperate in a peace process.

Eight years ago, the Second Battle of Yeonpyeong saw 13 North Korean sailors and four South Korean sailors killed as gunboats traded fire across the Northern Limit Line. The 85mm guns fired by the North Korean ships were loud enough to rattle the windows of residents on the island, according to news reports. Three years before that, a further 30 sailors died in the first battle of Yeonpyeong.

(The Telegraph also shared this North Korean propaganda video.)

Despite its status as the world’s poorest and most reclusive state, where millions of its citizens die of starvation each year, North Korea has managed to develop two advanced nuclear programs fueled by plutonium — and now enriched uranium — and export its technologies to Iran and Syria.

Yesterday, Obama told ABC News that China must “make clear to North Korea that there are a set of international rules that they need to abide by.”

International rules?  What international rules?  The rules against firing artillery shells at targets in another country? Or the rules against torpedoing  South Korean naval vessels?

China has little interest in promoting harmony between the two Koreas.  Reunification means absorption of the poverty-stricken North by the wealthy US ally in the South.  

South Korea is the world’s 15th largest economy and has a lot of trading partners; Japan, Canada, the EU, Russia, and so on. 

China can do without a US-backed competing market economy on its borders.

Beijing has even less interest in taking orders from Barack Obama. But neither does it want to risk an open conflict with the United States.   Beijing doesn’t want war with its best customer as long as it is more profitable to maintain some illusion of peace.

China much prefers the death by one thousand cuts method. Traditional ways work the best. (And it also provides the opportunity to stop periodically for a little profit-taking along the way.)

To that end, Beijing has been developing North Korea as the hub of a Chinese-backed triumvirate of ‘rogue’ nuclear powers consisting of Pyongyang, Damascus and Tehran to bedevil the West:

Beijing has run Obama’s drive to halt nuclear proliferation into the sand, while building up strategic interests in Tehran to a level comparable to its stake in Pyongyang.

According to OPEC figures, Iran’s oil sales to China jumped in recent months by 30 percent to 597,800 barrels a day. Aggressive in its quest for energy, Beijing will do whatever it takes to protect its energy sources and supply routes.

On Nov. 10, the high-ranking Chinese official Tong Xiaoling said his government would expand its investments in developing Iran’s oil and gas fields and building refineries. Those investments have already passed the $40 billion mark.

At this time, therefore, given China’s calculations, North Korea’s interest in selling nuclear technologies for hard foreign currency and Iran’s relentless pursuit of a nuclear weapon, it should not be hard to anticipate Tehran following Pyongyang’s brazen example before long.

The US is bogged down in Afghanistan, situated between nuclear wannabe Iran to the West and nuclear Pakistan to the east. Pakistan owes its nuclear program entirely to China, whereas India obtained its nuclear know-how from Beijing.

Pinprick attacks like the failed cargo plane bombs disguised as printers have virtually shut down cargo service to high-risk countries.  

They’ve also spawned ridiculous knee-jerk responses like banning printers and printer cartridges from air transport. 

Grannies are now routinely groped at airports as irrational fear of terror attacks replace common sense measures.  Billions are expended in vain counter-measures — hoping to defeat the minions of a handful of sixth-century Islamic warlords.

It is surreal. . .

The Bible divides the world into four discernible spheres of power during the final hours of human history.  There is revived Rome, the Kings of the South, the Kings of the East and the Gog-Magog Alliance.

The Bible makes no reference to any fifth, standalone superpower resembling the United States in the last days.  Just the four global alliances — and of course, Israel.

All are in some stage of development of their predicted end-times alliances. Nations that formerly leaned in one direction, (like Turkey, who formerly leaned West) are suddenly re-evaluating and re-aligning according to their predicted courses.

Each predicted end-times’ alliance is growing in power and influence as it develops.   But on the other side of the world, the planet’s only remaining superpower is reeling with each new cut.  

It isn’t pretty. But it IS what the Bible said to expect in the last days. 

And it’s here.

And THEN the Judgment

And THEN the Judgment
Vol: 110 Issue: 23 Tuesday, November 23, 2010

 “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.” (2nd Corinthians 5:10)

The Bible says that it is appointed unto man once to die, and then the judgment.  Every human being that ever lived will ultimately be judged according to his works. 

Every human being — including saved Christians.

The Bible identifies two separate seats of judgment.  The first is the judgment seat of Christ, also called the “Bema Seat.” 

“Bema” is the Greek word translated as “judgment seat” but the phrase loses much of its meaning in translation.  It means a rostrom or a tribunal, specifically one with one foot on the throne, or one with absolute authority. 

In Paul’s day, the Greek Olympic games had been part of Greek society for at least six hundred years. 

The ancient Olympics began as a foot race between female candidates for the job of priestess to the goddens Hera and continued in some form every four years thereafter until they were suppressed by Emperor Theodocius II of Rome in the early third century AD.

By Paul’s day, the Olympics had developed into a system, of which the Bema Seat was the most important.   The Bema Seat was the place where the judges sat directly in line with the finish line.

The job of the Bema judge was not to declare a winner, but rather, to record the order in which each runner finished his race.  The first one to cross the line was awarded a gold medal, next silver, next bronze, etc., but the race was not over until the last competitor crossed the finish line.

That is why Paul used the word “bema” to describe this particular judgment seat.  To be judged at the Bema Seat signifies having successfully completed the race – it is also called “believer’s judgment.”

The second judgment is the Great White Throne judgment.  This judgment takes place at the conclusion of the thousand-year Millennial Kingdom.  

“And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.” (Revelation 20:12)

Notice that believers stand before Christ.  At the Great White Throne they stand before God.  This doesn’t mean that  – Christ isn’t God, but the word ‘Christ’ (Christos) means Messiah, or Redeemer. 

Those that stand before the Great White Throne will NOT stand before the Redeemer to be judged according to their works.  That is the Bema Seat judgment.  At the Great White Throne, they will stand before the Righteous Judge to be condemned according to their choice.

Assessment:

Let me use a real, living example of the famously atheist Christopher Hitchens, author of “God is NOT Great.” As a sinner, Christopher Hitchens is no worse than I am.   His works are no more terrible than mine.  In short, he is no more deserving of hell than I am.

Hitchens is now dying of esophageal cancer and has explicitly rejected the prayers of the faithful for either his healing or his salvation.  Hitchens says that he refuses to bend his knee now because he doesn’t want to appear a hypocrite.

Instead, Hitchens says, if there is a God and a judgment, he prefers to be judged according to his own merits.  It is his choice to make. When he stands before the Great White Throne, his every action and thought and deed, as recorded in the books, will be examined and judged. 

But he will be condemned according to but one criteria. 

“And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.”  (Revelation 20:15)

I chose to be judged at the Bema Seat when I accepted my sinful state and trusted Jesus Christ as my Savior.  The Bema Seat judgment will be no less horrific than that of the Great White Throne. 

Let me repeat myself for emphasis: The Bema Seat judgment will be no less horrific than that of the Great White Throne.   Like Christopher Hitchens at the Great White Throne; Christians will be “judged according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.” (2nd Corinthians 5:10)

The Bema Seat is not going to be some picnic – the Apostle Paul calls it ‘a terror.’

“Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are made manifest unto God; and I trust also are made manifest in your consciences.” (2nd Corinthians 5:11)

But the Bema Seat judgment, although it IS a judgment for works, judges how you ran the race, not whether you finished it.  By definition, if you are standing before the Bema Seat, you finished the race.

The purpose of the Bema Seat is to determine what rewards you have earned. If you are there, it is because your name IS found in the Book of Life. 

The Book of Life is the ticket into heaven. Anyone whose name is not in there will join the antichrist and false prophet in the Lake of Fire. But the Book of Life is but one of four books identified in Scripture that record the details of our existence.

What are the other books? 

There is The Book of Births:

“Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being unperfect; and in Thy Book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as yet there was none of them.” (Psalms 139:16)

The Book of Tears:

“Thou tellest my wanderings: put Thou my tears into Thy bottle: are they not in Thy book?”

The Book of Tears records our pain and disappointments and sadness — Who we trusted and how we dealt with the trials and tribulations of this life.

“In God have I put my trust: I will not be afraid what man can do unto me. . . . For Thou hast delivered my soul from death: wilt not thou deliver my feet from falling, that I may walk before God in the light of the living?” (Psalms 56:10-11,13)

The Book of Remembrance:

“Then they that feared the LORD spake often one to another: and the LORD hearkened, and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before Him for them that feared the LORD, and that thought upon His Name. And they shall be Mine, saith the LORD of hosts, in that day when I make up My jewels; and I will spare them, as a man spareth his own son that serveth him.” (Malachi 3:16-17)

The Book of Remembrances is where God records that which sometimes man forgets. The Scriptures promise that:

“And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the Name of the Lord shall be saved.” (Acts 2:21)

And finally, the Big One: The Book of Life:

“He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the Book of Life, but I will confess his name before My Father, and before His angels.” (Revelation 3:5)

“And whosoever was not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire.” (Revelation 20:15)

Understanding the difference between the judgments and the Books that determine which judgment we face makes it impossible to mount a cogent argument against the doctrine of eternal security, or what is often derided as “OSAS”.

Every person who ever lived is recorded in all four Books, including the Book of Life.  Revelation 3:5 says that he that overcomes will be clothed in white rainment and that Jesus will not blot his name out of the Book of Life.

Does that mean a saved person’s name can be blotted out if they fail to ‘overcome’?   No. It means exactly the opposite.  How does a believer ‘overcome the world?’   Obviously, he can’t, or there would be no need for a Savior to do it for him.

“These things I have spoken unto you, that in Me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)

Ye are of God, little children, and HAVE overcome them: because greater is He that is in you, than he that is in the world.  (1st John 4:4)

Your name is recorded in the Book of Births, the Book of Tears, and the Book of Remembrances and the Book of Life.  So, too is the name, Christopher Hitchens.  Hitchens is still alive.  He still has an opportunity to repent and trust Jesus.

That opportunity will remain with him until he draws his last breath.   On that day, if he remains defiant, THEN will Jesus blot his name out of the Book of Life.

THAT is what John meant when he wrote that the Great White Throne was the second death.  The first death occurs when one dies in his sins and his name is blotted out of the Book of Life. 

The second death occurs at the second resurrection at the Great White Throne.

You cannot blot your own name out of the Book of Life by your sins.  It is blotted out by Jesus by your final rejection of salvation at the first death.  

If it is blotted out by your sins, rather than your rejection of salvation, then what does it mean when it says we will be judged for what was done in the body, both good and bad?

Otherwise, the first death and the second death are meaningless symbols, since death is a fairly identifiable condition — it means, ‘not alive’. 

If you are alive now, your name is in the Book of Life — and will remain there until you are dead and its is too late to trust Christ. The actual equation isn’t “once saved, always saved.”  It more accurately undersood as “saved once and always”.

The decision to blot out your name from the Book of Life is not made based on your sins in this life.  Your name remains in the Book of Life until you die in your sins.  And if you are saved, you can’t.

Don’t let the enemy steal away your victory.  It came at too high a price.