There’s No Escaping America, Comrade!

There’s No Escaping America, Comrade!
Vol: 128 Issue: 19 Saturday, May 19, 2012

One of the founders of Facebook, whose IPO made all its founders billionaires and about 1000 employees into millionaires, renounced his US citizenship so he wouldn’t have to pay the United States roughly $67 million dollars in taxes.

The move should not have been all that surprising.  Saverin was neither born in the U.S. nor is he a resident.  Saverin’s involvement in Facebook was actually fairly minimal — except without his financing, Facebook would probably be the Omega Letter. 

(We were already a social networking site four years before Zuckerberg had his ‘brilliant’ idea — and the financing to exploit it). Without Saverin, Zuckerberg would not have been able to keep his servers going.

When the rest of Facebook’s team moved west, Saverin stayed put.  Zuckerberg tried to edge Saverin out of the company but Saverin sued and the resulting settlement gave him a stake in the company.

As of this year, Saverin owns less than 5% of Facebook, yet his five percent stake is worth about two billion dollars.  Eduardo Saverin was born in Brazil.  In 1993, his wealthy father moved the family to Miami after learning Eduardo had been placed on a list of potential kidnapping targets.

Saverin became a US citizen in 1998, and helped found Facebook with Mark Zuckerberg in 2004 and moved to Singapore in 2009.  In early 2012, Saverin renounced his US citizenship to become a citizen of Singapore.

Saverin’s notice of renunciation was published in the April 30, 2012, edition of the Federal Register along with more than 400 other people who are no longer U.S. citizens.

Under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, signed into law in 1996 under President Clinton, each year the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is required to publish the names of persons who are no longer U.S. citizens.

Why would it be the responsibility of the IRS, instead of the Immigration and Naturalization Service?  The answer is obvious.  Taxes. 

The majority of US citizens that renounce their citizenship, like Princess Grace of Monaco, Queen Noor, Jet Li, Terry Gilliam and Andreas Papandreou (now the Prime Minister of Greece) do so to avoid crippling US income taxes.

But Americans that renounced their citizenship after 2008 are still subject to reporting and tax requirements under our tax laws.  Those laws apply if any of certain criteria are met.  In Saverin’s case, he would be subject to the expatriation tax because his net worth is $2 million or more on the date he expatriated.

Under the law, any assets that leave the country with you after you have renounced are treated as if they were sold the day you left and are subject to taxes.  But the government can only tax what his stake was worth BEFORE the IPO made Saverin a billionaire.

Democrat Senator Chuck Shumer teamed up with Democrat Bob Casey to offer an amendment to the tax code to add a stiff penalty to punish wealthy expatriates that renounce their citizenship to avoid paying taxes.

The bill would require Saverin, who was not born in the US, does not live in the US and is not a US citizen, to pay whatever the US decides is its “fair share” of Saverin’s income, or be permanently barred from ever entering the United States again.

Schumer and Casey’s bill would levy an additional 30 percent capital gains tax on all future earnings made in the United States on all expatriates with either a net worth of more than $2 million or who had an average tax liability of $148,000 over the previous five years.

The bill would allow the Internal Revenue Service to determine whether or not an expatriate had renounced their citizenship for tax purposes, placing the burden of proof on the expatriate themselves to show they were not moving abroad to avoid taxation.

“We simply cannot allow the ultra-wealthy to write their own rules,” said Senator Casey in a statement. “Mr. Saverin has benefited greatly from being a citizen of the United States but he has chosen to cast it aside and leave U.S. taxpayers with the bill. Renouncing citizenship to simply avoid paying your fair share is an insult to middle class Americans and we will not accept it.”

There’s that phrase, “fair share” again.  To the socialist mind, Saverin is taking their money away from before the liberals have a chance to confiscate it.

Assessment:

It is the position of the liberals in government that Saverin owes his success to the US government because he could have only made it in capitalist America. That means he has an obligation to give it back. 

One wonders; Russia has billionaires.  Do they owe their success to the Kremlin?  Do wealthy Chinese owe their success to the uniqueness of the Chinese system?

For his own part, Saverin says he has no intention of avoiding US taxes due.

“My decision to expatriate was based solely on my interest in working and living in Singapore, where I have been since 2009,” Saverin said. “I am obligated to and will pay hundreds of millions of dollars in taxes to the United States government. I have paid and will continue to pay any taxes due on everything I earned while a U.S. citizen.”

Saverin also expressed that he’s thankful to his formerly adopted country:

”As a native of Brazil who immigrated to the United States, I am very grateful to the U.S. for everything it has given me. In 2004, I invested my life’s savings into a start-up company that initially was run out of a college dorm room.  Since then the company has expanded dramatically, has created thousands of jobs in the United States and elsewhere, and spawned countless new companies across the United States and other countries.”

Saverin loaned money to Mark Zuckerberg.  Saverin made the money he loaned Zuckerberg in 2004 with money he made trading stocks — in Brazil!  Saverin paid his way to Harvard with money he made abroad.

Had Saverin come to the US illegally, what would be different?  Saverin could still have attended Harvard — he would not be the first illegal alien to do so.   

(An illegal alien, a black guy, a Communist and a Muslim walk into a bar.  The bartender looks up and says, “What can I get you, Mr. President?”)

But I digress. . . . since Saverin made his money in Brazil, the money he paid for his tuition was of foreign origin.  What benefit did US citizenship convey on Saverin?  

As an illegal alien he can still get a driver’s licence, even after a drunk driving conviction.   As an illegal alien, he could evidently still participate in the US political process.  Saverin could still work in the US illegally, by getting an “unlawful presence waiver” from the Obama administration.

If Saverin had won the lottery, rather than earning his billions via the capitalist system, as an illegal alien, then the US government would be his advocate, rather than his enemy.  If Saverin remained an illegal alien instead of becoming a citizen, he would be entitled to free health care at the expense of someone else.

If Saverin had been an illegal alien instead of a citizen, he might not even have had to pay for his Harvard education. Under California’s Dream Act, he could have access to private funds, or even a government grant.   Heck, as an illegal alien, he could even become President, according to Senator Dick Durbin.

Saverin didn’t do any of these things.  Instead, he played by the rules, worked hard, and made it without government assistance.  And when the government demanded that he pay for all these things for illegal aliens, he voted with his feet.

What Saverin did is no less loyal than any of the thousands of California businesses that made their money in California and then packed up and moved to Texas when California claimed their property really belonged to California and not Texas, when in fact, it didn’t belong to either one of them.

Redistributing Saverin’s money to those that didn’t earn it is harder to do from Singapore.

If one is going to tax Peter to pay Paul, why wouldn’t Peter want to pack up and leave?  The US government didn’t give Saverin the money to fund Zuckerberg’s idea in 2004.  Neither did the government pony up the seed money for him. 

What is the solution to preventing people from leaving the United States to avoid paying taxes for which they receive no benefit?  One way is to confiscate their assets when they leave, the way the Nazis confiscated the assets of fleeing Jews.

Another way might be the one the Democrats continue to pay lip service to while doing exactly the opposite — fairness.  If taxes were fair, then there would be no reason to try and escape from America.

They blame the wealthy for not paying their fair share, confiscate it to give away to those who are lawbreakers by virtue of their presence — call that “fairness” and demonize anyone that questions their definition of “fair”.

Isn’t it interesting?  Liberals go ballistic at the suggestion that America build a wall to keep illegal aliens out, while at the same time, they advocate building another wall to keep wealthy Americans in.  

The bottom line? America is a lot easier to get into than it is to get out of — if you are rich.  It’s like jail, only backwards.

Ayn Rand’s novel “Atlas Shrugged” was a nightmare “what-if” published in 1957.  But she can be forgiven for not foreseeing what kind of world the liberals really had in mind.

If this were Ayn Rand’s novel, nobody would be asking the question, “Where’s John Galt?”  They’d already know.

He’d be in some federal prison for attempting to escape from America’s “Worker’s Paradise.” 

The Stones Cry Out

The Stones Cry Out
Vol: 128 Issue: 18 Friday, May 18, 2012

The last sixty-four years have witnessed an explosion of archeological finds in the Holy Land, from the discovery of Beit Shean to the Dead Sea Scrolls to the ossuary of Caiaphas, the Chief Priest of the Sandhedrin who presided over the trial of Jesus Christ.

What makes them so important is that each new discovery made confirms the Biblical accounts. Those accounts that remain in dispute are not disputed because of archeological finds, but rather, by the lack of evidence confiming them.  But wherever the Bible can be confirmed, it has been!

For example, according to the Books of Kings, Queen Jezebel was the daughter of a pagan king who led Israel into idolatry. Jezebel was the wife of King Ahab, who was the first to be corrupted into practicing witchcraft and Baal worship.  As Queen, she persecuted God’s prophets to the degree that they were forced to hide in caves.

An ancient seal that surfaced in Israel more than four decades ago belonged to the biblical Queen Jezebel, according to a new study released last year by a Dutch university.  The seal, which some scholars date to the ninth century BC, was first discovered in 1964 by the Israeli archeologist Nahman Avigad, with the name “Yzbl” inscribed in ancient Hebrew, Utrecht University said.

The seal, which was donated to the Israel Department of Antiquities in the early 1960s by the private Voss-Hahn collection, not only bears symbols that indicate a female owner but also “well-worked” symbols that designate that owner as royalty.

Bible skeptics claim that many of the Old Testament’s historical accounts of the ancient Hebrew kingdoms contained in Samuel, Kings and Chronicles, are largely fiction.

Those skeptics that don’t deny outright that there was ever a King David or a King Solomon claim that, at best, they were just minor players.  But the archeological record says otherwise.

Gath is described in the Bible as the hometown of a giant soldier named Goliath.  Goliath’s battle with the young sling-shot-toting David, the future king of Israel, is the Bible’s best-known underdog story.  Skeptics say that those accounts can’t be accurate because the Hebrews had no written language in the time of David and Solomon.  

But recent digs at Khirbet Qeiyafa, near the ancient city of Gath, have turned up artifacts that corroborate the story.

The new artifacts include an inscribed stone embedded into the wall of an extensive collection of buildings in Tel Zayit, about 35 miles southwest of Jerusalem.  The 40-pound stone consisted of two lines of incised letters, representing the 22 letters of the Hebrew alphabet.

The stone, dating to the 10th century BC, establishes beyond doubt that a written Hebrew language was already well established at the time the Hebrews were recording the written histories of that time.  The new finds establish the existence of the Edomite kingdom at the time King David and his son Solomon ruled over Israel.

Another team of archeologists from Netherlands and Israel examined the ancient site of Tel Rehov near the excavated city of Beit Shean.  Radiocarbon dating connected Rehov to the conquest of the city by Shishak, (Pharoah Shoshenq I) between 940-900 BC.

The Bible says that King Shishak invaded Israel in the fifth year of the reign of Solomon’s son, Rehoboam.  The Biblical timeframe would place Solomon’s death at 930 B.C., putting Shishak’s invasion at 925 B.C., exactly within the range of radiocarbon dates (940-900 B.C.) for the destruction of Tel Rehov.

Previous studies had set the destruction of Rehov much later, which would have suggested the Bible’s timeline was wrong.

Turns out the Bible was right, after all.

The Exodus from Egypt has long been the skeptic’s favorite Bible story.  The skeptics claim the Exodus story is impossible and the Bible dating of the destruction of Jericho was off by two hundred years or more.  But a study published in the British journal, Nature confirmed the early date of Jericho’s destruction.

Another study, using carbon dating and tree rings found evidence of a volcanic eruption on the Agean island of Thera, dating to 1628 BC, coinciding with the plagues inflicted on Egypt.  Exodus 10:21-22 says,

“Then the Lord said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand toward the sky, that there may be darkness over the land of Egypt, even a darkness which may be felt. So Moses stretched out his hand toward the sky, and there was thick darkness in all the land of Egypt for three days.”

In another find, a family seal dating from the fifth century BC confirms the existence of an obscure Jewish family mentioned in the Book of Nehemiah.

A black stone seal with the inscription of the name, “Temech” was found outside the walls of the old city of Jerusalem near the Dung Gate, during a dig headed by archeologist Dr. Eilat Mazar.

The discovery of the Temech family seal confirms the existence of an obscure family mentioned in the Old Testament book of Nehemiah.  Most previous archeological digs had only confirmed biblical figures who were well-known kings.

And the discovery of a cuneform tablet dating to 595 BC acknowledges the receipt of about 1.5 lbs of gold from one Nebo-sarsekim in payment to Nebuchadnezzar.

The tablet confirms Nebo-sarsekim as one of the Babylonian officials mentioned in Jeremiah 39:3.

The Bible wins again.

Until 1965, it was presumed by “scholars” that Pontius Pilate was a fictional character because no evidence had been uncovered identifying him as Roman procurator in Judea at the time of Christ.

Until a plaque from King Herod dedicating the amphitheater at Ceasarea Phillip to Pontius Pilate was discovered there.

Skeptics keep finding new objections, but they are based in the absence of evidence, rather than evidence that conflicts with the Bible’s account.

Skeptics argue that King David was a Bible myth because nobody has yet uncovered an autographed picture of King David wearing a crown and sitting on his throne.

However, there is no evidence that anybody else occupied David’s throne in Davids’ time.  The same applies to King Solomon (despite the existence of the Western Wall of Solomon’s First Temple in Jerusalem).

Whenever archeology DOES find evidence from the Old Testament period, it confirms the Old Testament accounts.

The very stones of Israel cry out from antiquity;  “The Bible is true!”

Assessment:

Archeology has long been the skeptic’s ace-in-the-hole when making the claim that the Bible is filled with historical inaccuracies.  Of course, even a single, conclusively proved inaccuracy would completely destroy the central tenet of Judeo-Christianity — the infallibility of Scripture.

A lot of times, when we ask God for something, we tend to ‘hedge our bets’ so to speak, by giving God some kind of ‘out’ by appending their prayer with something like, “if it is Your will.”

God doesn’t need an ‘out’.  If we make a request that is within God’s will, we can be certain of an answer.

“And this is the confidence that we have in Him, that, if we ask any thing according to His will, He heareth us: And if we know that He hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of Him.” (1st John 5:14-15)

The Bible says it isn’t necessary to give God an ‘out’. Jesus told His disciples,

“Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.” (Luke 12:32)

If the Bible is proved fallible historically, then how could we know the promises of these verses aren’t equally faulty?  Worse, what about I verse?

“And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of My Hand.” ? (John 10:28)

If Jezebel didn’t persecute God’s prophets, if Jericho’s walls didn’t come ‘a-tumblin’ down’, if Moses didn’t call down plagues on Pharoah, if David wasn’t Israel’s greatest king, if Solomon is an historical invention, then the Bible isn’t true, God isn’t real, we came from nothing and we are going nowhere.

That’s why the skeptics are so eager to reach into the distant, unknowable past to find their arguments that the Bible is not relevant today.  Jezebel did sit as Queen of Israel, the Egyptian plague of darkness took place as described, Nebuchadnezzar did conquer Israel, Jericho’s walls did come ‘a tumblin’ down.’

And little details about minor historical personages establish the events to which they were a party.

The same Bible that contains such tiny details as the existence of Nebo-sarsekim and Temach also promises believers:

“If ye shall ask any thing in My Name, I will do it.” (John 14:14)

You can be certain that your Bible is true in every area where its accuracy can be measured.  The only ‘unproved’ parts of the Bible are those for which there is no evidence either way.  There are NO disproved parts of the Bible.  That means you can count on its promises.

You can be certain of the promise of eternal life.  You can trust Jesus, and you can trust the Word of God.

Note: Grant Jeffrey’s funeral is today — it will undoubtedly be a difficult time for Kaye. Please pray the Lord will continue to pour His strength into her as she faces this last major trial of their life together on this earth. 

“And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:7)

Maranatha!

Unbelievable!

Unbelievable!
Vol: 128 Issue: 17 Thursday, May 17, 2012

When I first began to study the Scriptural prophecies of social, economic and political conditions that would exist in the last days, it was a little like reading a science fiction novel describing an alternate universe.

There were certain developing trends that clearly established that a prophetic threshold had been crossed; the restoration of Israel, the revival of the old Roman Empire, the developing of a global economy, and so on.

But for decades, that was about the extent of what could be easily discerned.  Prophetically speaking, there seemed to be very little movement insofar as the fulfillment of Bible prophecy from the time Hal Lindsey penned “The Late, Great Planet Earth” in 1969 until we began to countdown to Millennium Midnight.

In the early 1990’s, it took a team of prophecy experts and researchers a week to come up with a half-hour’s worth of material for the television program, This Week in Bible Prophecy.   

The events prophesied by Scripture for the last days began coming to pass at such a rate that by 2001, The Omega Letter was founded as a daily journal.

Today’s is journal entry number three thousand, four hundred and fifty-one.  

When the Omega Letter published Volume One, Issue One on October 14, 2001 the unemployment rate was 5.4%.  A gallon of gas cost $1.23. 

President Bush had just created the Department of Homeland Security.  The Afghanistan War was one week old.  The first victim of the anthrax-laced letter bomber had just died.

The US was running a budget SURPLUS of $127 billion.  The government took in $1.99 trillion and spent $1.86 trillion while paying off about $90 billion in debt, the second-largest debt reduction in history.

Three thousand, four hundred and fifty-one journal entries later, we’re not issuing ultimatums to the Taliban, we’re trying to negotiate our way out of a losing proposition. 

The US budget deficit, at $1.33 trillion is almost equal to the entire 2001 budget

(We think.  We can’t be sure because the US hasn’t had a budget since Obama took office in 2009 and it won’t have one this year, either.) 

But the Congress has made great strides in bipartisanship since October, 2001.

When Obama submitted his proposed budget to the Congress, it was voted down by a margin of 414-0 in the House of Representatives before going on to the Senate where it received similar bipartisan treatment, failing by a unanimous margin of 99-0.

There is a fight brewing in Congress because the White House wants to raise the debt ceiling again while the Congress (including many Democrats) want him to cut spending.

I am baffled by presidential approval polls that say that a majority believe that Obama is leading the country in the wrong direction.  By definition, that means there must be somebody that thinks he is leading the country in the right direction?  

That is what baffles me.  Who could approve of the administration’s cynical use of racial politics without regard for the ramifications?  

There was another unexplained, random murder of a white jogger gunned down in broad daylight outside Kansas City, Kansas.  Witnesses said the killers were two black men.  That information was withheld by the local Channel 5 news.

Police say it was probably “a gang initiation” or “a dare.”   Sure.  Race was probably just a coincidence.  But that’s the thing.  Back in October, 2001 a racial motive wouldn’t have even entered my mind — 3451 journal entries later, it was my FIRST suspicion. 

Who could look at his track record and approve of it?  (Apart from the Muslim Brotherhood — or the mullahs that survived the Iranian students unsupported attempt to overthrow them.)

Who could approve of state-sponsored class warfare?  Or the rape of the economy?  Who in their right minds could approve of taxing corporations right out of the country as a tactic for creating jobs?

There is a newspaper headline on today’s Drudge Report that reads, “Florida Students Test Scores Drop, So State Lowers Passing Grade.”

That  doesn’t explain who — but it goes a long way toward explaining how.

Assessment:

While Obama is steering Good Ship America straight towards the falls, the European Union is making all the same mistakes as did its ancient predecessor, whose collapse was caused, says the Roman Poet Juvenal, by “bread and circuses.”

“In the case of politics, the phrase is used to describe the creation of public approval, not through exemplary or excellent public service or public policy, but through diversion, distraction, and/or the mere satisfaction of the immediate, shallow requirements of a populace.”

Greece is teetering on the brink of bankruptcy, which threatens to bring the whole Eurozone with it.  Money is fleeing from Greece as quickly as people can withdraw it.  The Greek banking system is on the brink of collapse.

In Spain, more than one billion euros have been withdrawn from Spanish banks in less than a week.  The Bank of Spain announced its fourth round of banking sector reforms this week as the euros continued to plunge and capital continues to seek safer havens. 

The French, having considered the costs associated with living within their means, decided they preferred to stick with bread and circuses and elected a Socialist to lead them.  He immediately promised them more bread and more circuses.  To pay for it, he took France deeper into debt.

The entire Eurozone is panicking as bank runs spill across Belgium, France and Italy.  Where are they putting their money?  Outside the Eurozone — in Great Britain.

In the Middle East, arms and military hardware continue to flow into Syria from Iran and Russia in defiance of UN sanctions according to Reuters News Service.  

The new report, submitted by a panel of sanctions-monitoring experts to the Security Council’s Iran sanctions committee, said the panel investigated three large illegal shipments of Iranian weapons over the past year.

“Iran has continued to defy the international community through illegal arms shipments,” it stated. “Two of these cases involved (Syria), as were the majority of cases inspected by the Panel during its previous mandate, underscoring that Syria continues to be the central party to illicit Iranian arms transfers.”

“The third shipment involved rockets that Britain said last year were headed for Taliban fighters in Afghanistan.”

An Iranian official marked Israel’s rebirth at a Palestinian Nakba Day (The Day of Castrophe) conference by calling for an “Islamic Awakening” among Palestinian Arabs to “demolish the Zionist regime.”  The Arabs observe May 15 — the date of Israel’s rebirth, according to the Christian calendar, as “The Catastrophe.”

This year, Palestinian Chairman and alleged moderate peace partner Mahmoud Abbas used the occasion of the Catastrophe to accuse Israel of “ethnic cleansing” for building settlements on land claimed by the Palestinians. 

“Abbas also claimed that Israel intentionally harms the Muslim and Christian holy sites in Jerusalem, saying, “The Al-Aqsa Mosque is being targeted by the occupation and together with the extremists has become the main target. They are trying to make Muslims and Christians flee the city by imposing heavy taxes, a policy which can only be called ethnic cleansing.”

This is the same land that the Palestinians demand be ethnically cleansed of Jews.  Evidently, they don’t see the irony.  And neither, apparently, does anybody else.

According to the Book of Daniel, the final form of the revived Roman Empire will be partly strong and partly weak, and will either consist of ten nations or it will broken up into ten administrative zones. 

Thirty four hundred and fifty-one journals back, Europe seemed destined to spread to the borders of Russia, with at least 27 and as many as 35 nations.  Today, it is on the brink of collapse, and its only hope of survival is to lose the dead weight and trim itself down to manageable size. 

So it is trending BACK in the direction the Bible prophesied.

According to the Book of Revelation, the first four judgments of the Tribulation are the revealing of the charismatic world leader that will seem to have all the answers for an increasingly desperate world.  He is the rider on the white horse.

The right guy will come along with his winning smile and his promise of Hope and Change and a gullible world will eat it up like candy as they hand him the keys to the kingdom.  The bigger the lies are and the more expansive the promises get, the dumber the voting public becomes.

He isn’t here yet, but that is the direction in which things are trending.

The second judgment is that of War.  Interestingly, Russia and Iran are bucking the West to resupply Syria. 

The Bible forecasts that Russia and Iran will form an alliance that will make war on Israel during the Tribulation.  The Bible also forecasts a war between Israel and Edom, which consists of the modern Arab world. 

Both those alliances are in development right now — and both are poised for war with a Jewish State that did not exist until 2500 years after those prophecies and has only now existed for sixty-four years.

Jesus forecast a rise in ethnic unrest (ethnos=nations) as well as unrest between political subdivisions. (basilea =“kingdoms”). 

The third judgment of the Tribulation is economic collapse and famine. 

“A measure of wheat for a penny, and three measures of barley for a penny; and see thou hurt not the oil and the wine.” (Revelation 6:6)

The symbols of a measure of wheat and three measures of barley represent a day’s food.  A penny is representative of a day’s work.  Oil and wine represent wealth.  

The 99 percent and the 1 percent — sound familiar?

“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.”

Every single legitimate reading shows that global warming stopped early in the last decade and that the earth has been cooling ever since.  But it takes a global threat in order to sell a global solution.  And if melting polar bears doesn’t do it for you, well maybe a little class warfare might help.

(Why not? It works for all the other dictators.)

In a webcast news conference Monday, U.N. climate chief Christiana Figueres noted that the cuts in greenhouse gas emissions pledged so far fall short of what scientists say is needed to avoid serious effects of global warming.  But she said “bridging the gap is both technically attainable and economically feasible” if rich countries, in particular, raise their ambitions on emissions cuts.

There will be a “Ring of Fire” eclipse on May 20 that will be visible from China to Texas.  The next ring eclipse won’t be visible in the U.S. for more than a decade — October 2023.

And NASA is warning of increasing solar activity through 2013 with some solar flares having catastrophic potential for Earth’s power grid.

As I was researching today’s OL, this thought just kept coming back to me.  You couldn’t make this stuff up.  It would be too unbelievable. 

But there it is, nevertheless.

“And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.” (Luke 21:28

A Reverse Lynch Mob is Still a Lynch Mob

A Reverse Lynch Mob is Still a Lynch Mob
Vol: 128 Issue: 16 Wednesday, May 16, 2012

The US Department of Justice, headed by Eric Holder, is considering charging George Zimmerman with a hate crime for shooting Trayvon Martin.  The DoJ claims Zimmerman profiled Martin, stalked him and then killed him.  If convicted, Zimmerman could face the death penalty.

The DoJ announcement came after Florida prosecutors released their evidence list, which court-watchers say doesn’t contain any new revelations, meaning that we pretty much already know everything the prosecutors do.

Sanford police initially refused to arrest Zimmerman, saying that there was no evidence to contradict his claim of self-defense.  Race hustlers Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson made a beeline to Sanford, Florida to stir up “days of rage” until Florida Governor Rick Scott finally gave in to the mobs and appointed a special prosecutor.

The state filed a second-degree murder charge against Zimmerman.   Part of the reason can be found in this snippet from a Cleveland, Ohio local news report.  Fox 8 in Cleveland offered the synopsis:

“Zimmerman, 28, is accused of killing Martin on February 26 as the African-American teenager walked back to the Sanford, Florida, house where he was staying, after visiting a convenience store. Prosecutors have said Zimmerman, who is a white Hispanic, killed Martin unjustly after profiling him.”

Did you see it?  “Zimmerman, who is a white Hispanic. . .”  What if Zimmerman had been black?   What if, say, his maternal great-grandfather was black?   Would Zimmerman still be a “white Hispanic”? 

Or would he then be as “black” as President Obama? (Would that mean that if Obama had a son, he would probably look more like George Zimmerman than Trayvon Martin?)

But since George Zimmerman does not look black and Trayvon Martin does, the mainstream media has created the new racial designation of “white Hispanic”.

Zimmerman has already been convicted in the court of public opinion.  His entire family has been forced into hiding.  Robert Zimmerman, his father, is a retired judge.

“Rattled by death threats and shaken by personal information posted on the Web, Zimmerman, his wife and his mother-in-law with Alzheimer’s are now on the run, waiting for the trial they are convinced will exonerate their son.”

The Department of Justice announcement that it will seek a hate crime conviction came after the DoJ looked over the evidence and concluded that there is no way Zimmerman can be convicted of second-degree murder under Florida law.

Assessment:

“And because iniquity (lawlessness) shall abound, the love of many will wax cold.” (Matthew 24:12)

Under Florida law, a person has a right to use deadly force to defend oneself if one reasonably believes his life is in danger.  Zimmerman’s story, if true, is a textbook example of what the law was intended for.

If the story is NOT true, then one must conclude that Zimmerman shot Martin because he didn’t like blacks.  How credible is that?

Autopsy results from Trayvon Martin  showed that Martin had injuries to his knuckles when he died. 

The injury to Martin’s knuckles fits Zimmerman’s defense, which is that before he shot and killed Martin, Martin had broken his nose and knocked him to the ground, slamming his head on the sidewalk.

A medical report compiled by Zimmerman’s family doctor said that Zimmerman was diagnosed with a “closed fracture” of his nose, a pair of black eyes, two lacerations to the back of his head and a minor back injury the day after the shooting.

“The record shows that Zimmerman also suffered bruising in the upper lip and cheek and lower back pain. The two lacerations on the back of his head, one of them nearly an inch long, the other about a quarter-inch long, were first revealed in photos obtained exclusively by ABC News last month.”

So here is what the physical evidence shows.  It shows that Trayvon Martin had injuries consistent with punching Zimmerman in the nose and that Zimmerman’s nose had injuries consistent with being punched.   Zimmerman had injuries to the back of his head, which is consistent with his head being banged against a sidewalk.

“Moments after the shooting Zimmerman told eyewitnesses he shot Martin in self defense. He later told officers his head was being pounded into the pavement and that he feared for his life, but that it was only when Martin seemed to reach for the gun wedges in his waistband that Zimmerman drew his weapon and fired directly into Martin’s chest — killing him.”

Zimmerman is from a mixed-race family, his mother is Hispanic, his great-grandfather is black, he has many black friends, some prominent, that have stood up to the race-baiters to defend Zimmerman based on his record.

Governor Rick Scott appointed a special prosecutor to appease the lynch mob.  The prosecutor over-charged Zimmerman, calculating that under the law, he would be acquitted.  It was all a carefully choreographed dance in which race politics trumped the law.

Once Eric Holder realized that there was no evidence to convict him of second degree murder, he went after him on the federal hate crimes charges.

Why isn’t the Department of Justice investigating the mob beating of two white reporters in Norfolk, Va. by a black mob who said it was “justice for Trayvon”?   Did the mob mistake the white reporters, one male and one female, for George Zimmerman?

Matthew Owens was beaten so badly by a black mob in Alabama that he ended up in the hospital in critical condition.   

“Owens’ sister, Ashley Parker, saw the attack. “It was the scariest thing I have ever witnessed.” Parker says 20 people, all African American, attacked her brother on the front porch of his home, using “brass buckles, paint cans and anything they could get their hands on.”

What Parker says happened next could make the fallout from the brutal beating even worse. As the attackers walked away, leaving Owen bleeding on the ground, Parker says one of them said “Now that’s justice for Trayvon.”

Did the mob mistake Matthew Owens of Mobile, Alabama, for George Zimmerman?  There have been a string of black mobs attacking white people solely because of their race and then linking it to “Justice for Trayvon”.

“In just two months, there were at least 14 known assaults — some clearly attempted murder — perpetrated by black mobs against 15 white victims that have been tied to a widely shared desire to avenge the death of Trayvon Martin.”

Noted black conservative Thomas Sowell calls it “A Censored Race War” in which law enforcement is turning a blind eye to black racially-motivated crimes while;

“. . . people in the mainstream media who go ballistic if some kid says something unkind on the Internet about a homosexual classmate nevertheless hear no evil, see no evil, and speak no evil when Asian-American youngsters are victims of violence.”

The lynching of George Zimmerman and the beatification of Trayvon Martin, (based on race and nothing more), brings us to the intersection of two more signs given by Jesus in reply to the question, “what will be the sign of Thy coming?”

The first, of course, is the rampant lawlessness that runs in a straight line from guys like Trayvon Martin straight through the Department of Justice and into the White House.  If the administration doesn’t agree with a law, it unapologetically breaks it.  

The DoJ refuses to enforce the Defense of Marriage Act because the administration disagrees with it.  That is itself a crime.  The DoJ does not have the authority to refuse to obey the will of Congress.  The DoJ refuses to enforce hate crimes laws unless the victims are black. 

There are fourteen clear examples of racially-motivated gang beatings of whites that the DoJ is ignoring, while seeking a hate-crimes charge against Zimmerman because the evidence won’t support a murder conviction.  

One of the other signs Jesus gave was the rise of hate crimes.  “Nation will rise against nation” the Lord said.  But the word translated as “nation” is translated from the Greek word “ethnos” which means, “race” or “tribe”.

Of course there has always been lawlessness and there has been ethnic strife for as long as there have been racial differences among humans.  But what the Lord was addressing was a specific set of conditions under unique circumstances — what will be the sign of Thy coming?

Jesus said that these quite ordinary conditions of lawlessness and racial prejudice will accelerate in the last days exponentially, the way that labor pains start slow and then increase in frequency and intensity until the moment of birth arrives.

In fact, that is the exact illustration He used.  “All these things are the beginning of sorrows.”  “Sorrows” is the word used to describe childbirth, going all the way back to the Garden of Eden.

So here we are, a century and a half after the Civil War, Constitutional amendments and executive orders and hundreds of laws aimed at combating racial inequality later, watching the United States government bringing down all its might on George Zimmerman — because the administration doesn’t agree with Florida law.

And because George Zimmerman looks like a “white” Hispanic.

“For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only He who now letteth will let, until He be taken out of the way. And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of His mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of His coming. . . ” (2 Thessalonians 2:7-8)

If they can’t lynch him for murder, they’ll lynch him for looking white.  And nobody dares to speak up for fear of being called a ‘racist’.

Blessed Assurance

Blessed Assurance
Vol: 128 Issue: 15 Tuesday, May 15, 2012

I confess that I am still reeling from the news of Grant Jeffrey’s passing.  But at the same time, I have supreme confidence that Grant is much happier about his situation than any of us are.

Everybody — and every living thing — dies eventually.  We were not created to die, but the sentence of death was passed on all living things when the first sin was committed by our first parents, Adam and Eve.

The Scriptures have much to say on the subject, but the subject is not exactly the sort of thing people like to dwell on, and consequently, we don’t.

For most people, death signifies the end of life, and God has built aversion to death into the genetic makeup of all living things as a kind of self-preservation mechanism for the survival of the species.

Walk through the woods, and if you see any small animals about, they are usually fleeing your presence.  They don’t know your intentions, but they do fear death, so their default position is that you represent a threat to life and are to be avoided at all costs.

Mankind is the highest order of beings to be created under the ultimate sentence of death, and, as a general rule, fears death as much as any squirrel or rabbit scurrying through the woods.  To the lower animals, death doesn’t merely signify the end of life, it is the end of life, and animals know it instinctively.

Mankind also fears death, and does all that is possible to avoid it, but in the main, it is due to a different instinctive knowledge.  Men know that death is NOT the end of life, but rather, the end of life as we know it.

This knowledge is also instinctive; the appeal of atheism is that it espouses a view that death is final and absolute, and without final judgment.

Atheism is NOT the default view of death, however.  Atheism is something that must be taught.  The Bible says that the knowledge that death is NOT the end is instinctively ingrained in us.

“For the invisible things of Him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse.” (Romans 1:20)

We are created with an instinctive knowledge of God; God Himself has provided the details of His existence, but the basic knowledge of God is something we are all born with.

Ironically, one of the world’s premiere atheists, Vladimir Ilyanovich Lenin, the father of the Communist Russian Revolution, once staked out the philosophical position that it is impossible for the human mind to conceive of something that does not exist.

As an example, Lenin postulated that it is impossible for the human mind to concentrate and come up with a new prime color.  There are only a finite number of possibilities, and no feat of imagination can come up with a new one that isn’t a combination of those which already exist.

Similarly, Lenin theorized, the knowledge of God is not something that could have been dreamed up in the mind of man.  We can imagine pink elephants, because pink exists, and elephants exist. We have a frame of reference for both.

But knowledge of a Supreme Being Who exists outside of space and time, a Being Who always was, always will be, One with no beginning and no end, One Who possesses all knowledge and Who is everywhere at all times — for this concept we humans have no frame of reference.

We couldn’t have dreamed up God, suggests Lenin, because our minds are limited to thinking in terms of three dimensions, those of space, time and matter.  God exists outside of all three, yet a child believes in God until he is taught differently.

The fear of death is rooted, for man, in that instinctive knowledge of God’s existence.  For everyone except the atheist/humanist, death is the time of reckoning, since man also instinctively recognizes sin AS sin.

Nobody needs to be taught that sin exists — nobody truly believes themselves to be without sin, despite high-sounding philosophical arguments to the contrary.

To deny the existence of sin is to deny the necessity for police, courts, prisons and a social order.  Animals are incapable of sin, therefore, the concept of ‘punishment’ is pragmatic, rather than instinctive.

One can ‘punish’ a misbehaving pet, but it isn’t actually ‘punishment’ it is behavior modification by the imposition of unpleasant sanctions.

An animal has no instinctive knowledge of right or wrong, only cause and effect.

Scripture says that the ‘wages of sin is death’ and reminds us that ‘all have sinned’ and therefore, all of us die.

The Scriptures also explain what we already know by instinct; that human death is not the end of life, but rather, by definition and practice, a separation.  It separates body and spirit, it separates us from loved ones, and loved ones from us.

Some false teachers say that death is a sleep, but according to Scripture, it is a journey.  Genesis 25:8, 35:18, and Numbers 27:13 speak of the dead as souls being ‘gathered to their fathers’.  David, mourning the loss of his son, lamented, “I shall go to him, but he shall not return to me.” (2nd Samuel 12:23)

The book of Job, chronologically believed to predate Moses, relates Job’s confidence that;

“And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God: Whom I shall see for MYSELF, and MINE eyes shall behold, and NOT ANOTHER; though my reins be consumed within me.” (Job 19:26-27)

For those left behind, death appears to be the end of life, but, although the body sleeps, the Bible teaches that death is the departure of the spirit into another realm of consciousness.

“Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord . . We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.” (2nd Corinthians 5:8)

Peter testified that at death, he would ‘put off’ his physical body.

 “Knowing that shortly I must put off this my tabernacle, even as our Lord Jesus Christ hath shewed me.” (2nd Peter 1:14)

Jesus told the thief from the Cross,

“Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with Me in paradise.” (Luke 23:43)

And the Apostle John’s vision in Revelation depicts dead saints in heaven prior to the Resurrection, as well as during the Tribulation on earth.

The Bible defines three different forms of death.  The physical death with which we are all too familiar, in which the spirit separates from the body; spiritual death, which is the separation from God as a consequence of sin, and the ‘second death’ — the final, eternal separation from God and from life in the Lake of Fire.

Hebrews 9:27 explains in a sentence, the difference between the instinctive fear of death embedded in lower animals, and the fear of death as experienced by human beings.

“And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment.”

The appeal of atheism to the atheist is found in part ‘b’ of that verse, “after this, the judgment.”

Assessment:

The instinctive recognition of sin brings with it the instinctive fear of judgment.  It is the fear of judgment that forms the basis for all religion.

Religion is, by definition, man’s effort to make himself acceptable to God, thereby avoiding the judgment he instinctively understands he so richly deserves.

But religion is never completely satisfying, because we also instinctively know that man cannot make himself acceptable to God, since, (apart from the self-deluded), we know we can’t even make ourselves acceptable to other humans!

Christianity is God’s way of making man acceptable to Himself.

Lincoln once observed, ‘you can fool some of the people some of the time, but you can’t fool all of the people all of the time.’

Some people can see through the outward veneer of false righteousness some of the time, God can see through it all the time, since He knows what we know about ourselves — and we know what we are REALLY like when nobody else is looking.

That is why God sent us a Savior in Jesus Christ.  Jesus took the form of sinful man, lived the sinless life God’s perfection demands of each of us, and then, being guiltless, He assumed the punishment for sin for us all at the Cross.

Think of sin as debt and righteousness as the only acceptable currency available to discharge it.  One cannot make a mortgage payment without the use of a currency acceptable to the mortgage holder.

As unrighteous sinners, we spent all our currency with our first sin and we became spiritual paupers, unable to discharge our debt.

“Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt. But to him that worketh not, but believeth on Him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness” (Romans 4:4-5)

Jesus, by His life, kept His currency intact, and is able to pay off our ‘mortgage’ for us.  When we come to Him and ask, He reaches into His pocket and pays it off for us.

Our sin debt is paid, and the wages of sin are wiped clean. We pass from spiritual death into eternal life. For that reason,

“There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.” (Romans 8:1)

Another way to say the same thing is there is ‘no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who TRUST not after the flesh, but after the Spirit’ — since salvation is a consequence of trust, our faith that He will keep His Word to us, despite our own shortcomings.

“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” (Hebrews 11:1)

Everybody who has a regular job lives according to that principle.   We go to work because we expect to be paid at the end of the week.  Our paycheck doesn’t come til Friday, but we show up for work on Monday.

Payday is the SUBSTANCE of things hoped for on Monday, the fact we show up is evidence of that which won’t be seen until Friday.

We can borrow against that unseen paycheck, before we’ve earned it, because, although it has not even been written yet, it has SUBSTANCE.  Ask your banker.

All those who have placed their trust in Christ can count on ‘payday’, since He has already performed the necessary work.

All those who trust in themselves can also expect ‘payday’, but since the wages of sin is death, they can count on receiving their full check.

Payday comes at the point of physical death.  Death is not the end, it is the beginning.  Jesus used the analogy of being ‘born again’ to describe the process.  It is also illustrative of what awaits us on the other side.

A baby in the womb is pretty contented to be there.  It is warm, and safe, and it is all they know.  Birth takes place, not when the baby claws its way out, but, rather, when it is EXPELLED involuntarily, kicking and screaming, into a terrifying world of bright lights, loud noises, and pain.

But, once having experienced life on the outside, the darkness and confinement of the womb is seen for what it is, and it would be an act of insanity to want to return to such an existence, regardless of how comfortable it seemed when it was all we knew.  Even pain is preferable to a return to the darkness of the womb.

The passage from physical death to eternal life is an unbroken stream of consciousness, just as is the passage from the womb to the world.

That passage is, from this perspective, as unpleasant as being expelled from the womb is at the time of its occurrence.  But, as noted, once having experienced physical life outside, who would long to return to the womb?

For those who know what awaits them, death can be a comfort, although the transistion process is no less frightening than the transition from womb to delivery room.

Death is much worse for those left behind than it is for those who have trusted Jesus and will pass into His loving arms as they leave behind their tabernacle of flesh.

The pain of separation is unbearable, and the prospect of having to continue in this life after they have gone on ahead can be unthinkable — yet it is unavoidable.

There is little comfort, apart from the certain knowledge that separation is only temporary, since we will all one day make the same journey. Scriptures tell us that,

“Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered. Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin.” (Romans 4:7-8)

Trust Jesus.  His Word is true.  Death is not the end.  It is the beginning.  For the believer, it is the beginning of life as wondrous and different as the passage from the womb.

The rest of us remain trapped inside this comparatively dark and seemingly safe place, unaware of the death that awaits each of us, and uncertain of what our loved ones that have gone before experienced.

“But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.” (1st Thessalonians 4:13)

“. . .then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” (1 Corinthians 15:55-57)

Have courage! Trust Jesus.  And know He will keep His promise.

“All that the Father giveth Me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.” (John 6:37)

“And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” (Phillipians 4:7)

History Prepares New Poem

History Prepares New Poem
Vol: 128 Issue: 14 Monday, May 14, 2012

Today is May 14th. Exactly sixty-four years ago today, according to the Christian calendar, David Ben-Gurion announced to the world the creation of a Jewish state called Israel.

The armies of Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria invaded almost immediately after the declaration sparking the first Arab-Israeli War aimed at the annihilation of the Jewish State. Israeli forces defeated the coalition by the end of that year and the Jewish State took its place among the roster of nations.

In 1967, after the Six-Day War, ended up taking control of the Gaza Strip and the Sinai Peninsula from Egypt, the West Bank and East Jerusalem from Jordan, and the Golan Heights from Syria.  Today, the country borders Lebanon in the north, Syria in the northeast, Jordan and the West Bank in the east, the Gaza Strip and Egypt in the southwest.

But as far as the Arabs are concerned, this remains a temporary condition. And while history may not repeat itself, as Mark Twain famously observed, it often rhymes.  As it does now.

After the Suez Crisis in 1956, Egypt agreed to the deployment of a United Nations Emergency Force as peacekeepers in the Sinai desert.  Over the next decade, there were numerous minor border clashes between Israel and its Arab neighbors, particularly Syria.

In early November, 1966, Syria signed a mutual defense agreement with Egypt.

In May 1967, Egyptian president Gamal Abdul Nasser ordered UN peacekeepers out of the Sinai and began massing troops in the Sinai near Israel’s borders.  At the time, the Egyptian Army numbered about 160,000 troops — two-thirds of which were deployed to the Sinai.

On May 22 Nasser closed the Straits of Tiran.  On May 30 he gave a speech in which he explained Egypt’s objectives:

“Our basic objective will be the destruction of Israel. The Arab people want to fight.”

On May 30, Jordan and Egypt signed a mutual defense pact as Iraq began moving troops into Jordan.  On June 1 Israel formed a national unity government, widening its cabinet and bringing all the political factions together as part of a united front. 

On June 4, Israel made the decision to go to war.

The Six Days War was a crushing defeat for the Arab side, and particularly for Egypt.  Smarting from the loss, Egypt tried again, this time under former Nasser aide Anwar Sadat, in October, 1973.  That war led to Egypt becoming the first Arab state to sign a peace treaty with Israel in 1979.

The peace deal cost Anwar Sadat his life.  His successor, Hosni Mubarak, kept the peace treaty with Israel for thirty-three more years before Mubarak was deposed by a popular uprising led by the Muslim Brotherhood and disguised as the “Arab Spring”.

Assessment:

A new Pew Research poll that came out the second week in May shows that a super-majority of Egyptians want to cancel the 1979 peace treaty altogether.  Sixty-one percent — almost two-thirds! — of Egyptians support abrogating the peace deal.

The only country that Egypt hates MORE than Israel is the United States, which gives Egypt some $1.7 BILLION in military aid each year in return for Egypt’s keeping the peace with Israel.  But the Pew poll finds that 79% of Egyptians have a negative view of the US, with only 19% holding a favorable view of America.

Sixty percent of Egyptians in the poll say that US foreign aid has a NEGATIVE effect on their economy.  Nearly seven out of ten Egyptians have a negative view of President Obama’s foreign policy.  And six out of ten Egyptians believe that Egypt should be governed by Sharia Law.

On Monday, one of the front-runners in Egypt’s May 23 presidential elections, called Israel “the enemy” in a debate with his main contender, former Arab League chairman Amr Moussa.

In an interview with the private Egyptian TV channel CBC, Abul Fotouh said he had opposed the Camp David peace treaty since its implementation.

“I still view the peace treaty as a national security threat to Egypt, and it must be revised.  It is a treaty that forbids Egypt from exercising full sovereignty in Sinai and allows Israelis to enter Sinai without visas, while they need visas for Cairo.”

Fotouh called Israel “a racist state with 200 nuclear weapons” and claimed that Israel was a ‘threat’ to Egypt.  Worse, his main rival, Amr Moussa, also wants the treaty revised as a matter of national security.

Moreover, al-Arabiya called Fotouh the “moderate Islamic candidate” although he was formerly a leading member of the Muslim Brotherhood.

Yesterday, Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad referred to Israel as a “mosquito” while an editorial published in an Iranian newspaper bragged that America had abandoned Israel.

“It can be said that within the last 60 years, this is the first time that the Zionist regime, since its illegal inception, has had to endure rejection by the West over its vision and interest in the region.”

“The ramifications of [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu’s defeat in the face of Obama’s policies have been a breakdown in Israel’s usurper regime, where now many within its own government have spoken against its own prime minister, claiming Iran is a rational regime and not after the bomb.”

“With diminishing support for Israel and with the (upcoming) collapse of the monarchy in Saudi Arabia,” Zarei claims, “there won’t be any obstacles left facing Iran with its policy of annihilation of Israel.”

 Ayatollah Mesbah Yazdi, one of the most influential clerics in the Islamic regime and possibly the next supreme leader, has stated that it is the duty of Muslims to destroy the “Zionist regime and its arrogant supporters.”

Yazdi had decreed in 2006 that in case of war between Muslims and “infidels,” Muslims can take the “infidels” as slaves until they become Muslims and then send them back to their countries.

Forty-five years after the Israelis pulled together into a national unity government in preparation for war with Egypt, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu shocked the world when he announced the inclusion of his party’s chief political rival, Kadima, into a national unity government.

To help illustrate why the move was so shocking, imagine the Republicans, Democrats and the Tea Party agreeing to come together as a united front.  Moreover, just before announcing the creation of a national unity government, the Knesset was debating whether to call early elections.

Now the Israelis stand united.  As they did forty-five years ago in May, just weeks before the outbreak of the Six Days’ War.

Note: As you are probably aware, our good friend and brother (and long-time OL member ) Grant Jeffrey went home to be with the Lord just before midnight Friday night.   An announcement at Grant’s website confirmed that Grant succumbed to cardiac arrest at 11:09 pm on May 11.

Funeral arrangements will be posted at Grant’s website tomorrow.  His funeral will be held in Toronto.

Grant is home now, safe and sound and in the arms of His Lord, but we who are alive and remain are diminished by our loss, even as we are mindful of Grant’s gain.

Please join us in prayer for Grant’s wife, Kaye,  and that Grant’s ministry will continue to encourage believers until the Lord returns. 

Grant has always been a wonderful friend to our ministry, especially when we were starting out.   Our loss is Heaven’s gain, but I will miss his loyal friendship more than I can say.

Oil To Burn

Oil To Burn
Vol: 128 Issue: 12 Saturday, May 12, 2012

In July, 1944 as WWII was still raging, representatives of the 44 Allied nations met at the Mount Washington Hotel in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire to create an international economic system designed to govern post-war monetary relations between independent nation-states.

The meeting resulted in the “Bretton Woods Agreement, which set up a system of economic rules, institutions and procedures that were designed around the yet-future United Nations system.  Bretton Woods established the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the embryonic World Bank. 

Bretton Woods pegged the US dollar to the price of gold and pegged all other currencies against the value of the US dollar.  Under Bretton Woods, the US dollar was fully convertible to gold on demand and the price of gold remained relatively stable at $35.00 per Troy ounce.

The chief features of the Bretton Woods system were an obligation for each country to adopt a monetary policy that maintained the exchange rate by tying its currency to the U.S. dollar and the ability of the IMF to bridge temporary imbalances of payments.

In August, 1971 the United States unilaterally pulled out of the Bretton Woods Agreement, breaking the link between gold and the US dollar.  For the first time in history, formal links between major world currencies and real commodities was severed.

The action, known as the “Nixon Shock” came in response to America’s growing war debt, which resulted in the US experiencing, for the first time in the 20th century, a balance of payments and trade deficit. 

By 1971 the Federal Reserve had increased the money supply by 10%, forcing the other Bretton Woods countries into the position of being forced to prop up the US dollar.

To stabilize the economy and combat the 1970 inflation rate of 5.84%,[3] on August 15, 1971, President Nixon imposed a 90-day wage and price freeze, a 10 percent import surcharge, and, most importantly, “closed the gold window”, ending convertibility between US dollars and gold. The President and fifteen advisers made that decision without consulting the members of the international monetary system, so the international community informally named it the Nixon shock.

The Nixon Shock immediately caused the US dollar to depreciate.  Because oil was priced in dollars, OPEC was suddenly receiving less real income for the same price.  The OPEC cartel issued a joint communique stating that, from then on, they would price a barrel of oil against gold. 

The Nixon Shock in 1971 was met by the Oil Shock of 1973.  During the 1973 Yom Kippur War, President Nixon defied Saudi pressure and authorized Operation Nickel Grass, a strategic airlift of weapons and ammunition to Israel.

On October 16th, OPEC announced it was raising the cartel’s price per barrel for oil by 70%.  It cut production the next day.  Nixon didn’t back off on supporting Israel and OPEC imposed an oil embargo on the US, Western Europe and Japan.

By 1974 the price of oil had quadrupled. The stock market crashed.  The oil shock produced chaos in the US, with long lines, price controls and even gas rationing.  But the Saudis began to break with OPEC on key issues, ending OPEC’s hegemony over global oil prices.

The US cut a deal with the House of Saud to support the regime and in exchange, the House of Saud agreed to go along with Bretton Woods 2, which continued the practice of pegging the price of oil to the US dollar. 

Bretton Woods pegged the value of a dollar to the price of gold. Bretton Woods 2 unlinked gold and replaced it with oil.  Today, the House of Saud is both the birthplace and wellspring of radical Islamic terrorism and America’s “most valuable ally” in the war on terror.

It’s nuts.  And it isn’t even necessary anymore.

Assessment:

According to testimony given before Congress by the GAO (Government Accounting Office) on Thursday, the United States is energy independent right now.  Or rather, it could be, all in one single effort.

The GAO estimates that the “Green River Formation” — a vacant tract of federal land where Colorado, Wyoming and Utah come together — contains as much recoverable oil as — get ready for this — all the rest the world’s proven reserves combined!

Let me say that again. The GAO says the recoverable oil in the Green River Formation is EQUAL to the combined proven reserves of the WHOLE WORLD!  (I want to say it again, just because nobody else is saying it, but I will forbear — to let the GAO say it.)

Anu K. Mittal, the GAO’s director of natural resources and environment, told the Congress:

“USGS estimates that the Green River Formation contains about 3 trillion barrels of oil, and about half of this may be recoverable, depending on available technology and economic conditions.”

 “The Rand Corporation, a nonprofit research organization, estimates that 30 to 60 percent of the oil shale in the Green River Formation can be recovered,” Mittal told the subcommittee. “At the midpoint of this estimate, almost half of the 3 trillion barrels of oil would be recoverable. This is an amount about equal to the entire world’s proven oil reserves.”

It is important to understand that Mittal was testifying before Congress, under oath and was not offering some partisan political argument.  Her testimony wasn’t based on ideology, but rather, on science.  But she did point out some of the political potential inherent in developing the Green River project.

“As you can imagine having the technology to develop this vast energy resource will lead to a number of important socioeconomic benefits including the creation of jobs, increases in wealth and increases in tax and royalty payments for federal and state governments,” she said.

What I can’t imagine is why the government is sitting on its hands instead of exploiting the chance for energy security and all that would mean for national security?

That is the big question for which the big answer is big money.  Big money that flows into US political campaigns.  Big money in the form of guaranteed “consulting” jobs for outgoing White House officials.

Big money that is to be made by pretending that alternative sources are a better replacement for petroleum products.  But solar power byproducts can never be used to make plastics or nylon or linoleum or trash bags or bicycle tires or shower curtains or lipstick or non-dairy whipped cream.

For that, you need oil.  Not windmills.  Not solar farms.

This morning, I saw where the Obama administration is about to give $50 million to a Nevada solar farm.  The solar farm employs two people.  The electricity it produces costs three times as much.  And the company itself is not even American!

It almost sounds like a joke looking for a punch line. 

We are on the brink of global war, but we’ve been on the brink of global war since September 11th 2001.  Our biggest enemies are also our biggest suppliers of a product we could produce ourselves, but we don’t want to make our enemies, umm, angry at us.

The global economic situation is unsustainable; we’ve spent all the money in the world several times over and we’re trying to find a way to spend it one more time. 

According to the Book of the Revelation the order of events are these.  With the breaking of the first seal comes the rider on the white horse, symbolizing the ascension of the antichrist to a position of global power.

It is significant to note that the rider on the white horse carries a bow – but no arrows.  He conquers in a bloodless, ie, political conquest. He’s not a warlord.  He’s a politician.

The second seal is broken next, releasing the rider on the red horse, War.  This rider is given power to take peace from the earth and “there was given to him a great sword” . 

The third seal releases the rider on the black horse, Famine.  He symbolizes world-wide economic depression.  References to a measure of wheat or three measures of barley for a penny is symbolic of a day’s food for a day’s pay, whereas oil and wine are symbolic of great wealth.

In the Bible’s Great Depression, the poor will suffer catastrophic poverty, but the rich will appear to weather the storm quite comfortably.  We’ve been almost there since the dawn of the 21st century.  It feels like at any moment, the trumpet might sound. 

We are so close that many argue we are already somewhere between the breaking of the first and the third seals.

We’re not.  Israel has yet to achieve any measure of peace and safety.  No covenant has been confirmed.  No rider of sufficient stature has made an appearance on the world stage.  Not yet. 

But what I want you to see this morning is how little it would take to bring all these events into motion. 

If you had never heard of the Bible, and if you knew nothing about Bible prophecy, how would your assessment, given the facts presented, differ from the scenario the Bible says is inevitable?

And that’s the point.

“And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.” (Luke 21:28)

So Much For 2012?

So Much For 2012?
Vol: 128 Issue: 11 Friday, May 11, 2012

I used to get emails all the time from New Agers and so-called Mayan ‘scholars’ castigating me as a ‘cultural bigot’ for not giving credence to extra-biblical ‘prophecies’ from sources like the Maya.

I hate being called a ‘cultural bigot’.  Fer cryin’ out loud, I am a religious bigot — try and get your pejoratives right. I have nothing against Mayan culture–  since it is largely extinct.  (But it is worth remembering that they used to like to cut people’s hearts out and eat them as part of their religious services).

Culturally, at least according to the New Age, the Maya were brilliant.  According to “experts” presented to the public by the mainstream media, the Maya had calculated the exact date of the end of the world with such precision that it had to be correct.

First, some background babble:

In 1975, the ending of b’ak’tun 13 became the subject of speculation by several New Age authors, who asserted it would correspond with a global “transformation of consciousness”. In Mexico Mystique: The Coming Sixth Age of Consciousness, Frank Waters tied Coe’s original date of 24 December 2011, to astrology and the prophecies of the Hopi,[50] while both José Argüelles (in The Transformative Vision)[51] and Terence McKenna (in The Invisible Landscape)[52][53] discussed the significance of the year 2012 and made reference to 21 Dec. 2012.

In 1983, with the publication of Robert J. Sharer‘s revised table of date correlations in the 4th edition of Morley’s The Ancient Maya,[Note d] each became convinced that 21 December 2012, had significant meaning. By 1987, the year in which he organized the Harmonic Convergence event, Arguelles was using the date 21 December 2012 in The Mayan Factor: Path Beyond Technology.[54][55] He claimed that on 13 August 3113 BC the Earth began a passage through a “galactic synchronization beam” that emanated from the center of our galaxy, that it would pass through this beam during a period of 5200 tuns (Maya cycles of 360 days each), and that this beam would result in “total synchronization” and “galactic entrainment” of individuals “plugged into the Earth’s electromagnetic battery” by 13.0.0.0.0 (21 Dec. 2012). He believed that the Maya aligned their calendar to correspond to this phenomenon.”

There are entire websites devoted exclusively to the proposition that the Mayans have somehow calculated the date of the end of the world.  The time and effort and energy that must have been devoted to their construction gives some measure of how seriously people were taking it.

They even made a movie about it with this intriguing synopsis:

“Never before has a date in history be so significant to so many cultures, so many religions, scientists, and governments. “2012” is an epic adventure about a global cataclysm that brings an end to the world and tells of the heroic struggle of the survivors.”

(“. . . tells of the heroic struggle of the survivors of the end of the world?  Were they planning a sequel?)

Earlier this month, we actually discussed the fact that about one person in seven (or 15%) believes that the world will come to an end within their lifetimes.    

Last month, we discussed the National Geographic program, “Doomsday Preppers” and the fact that “while they all mocked the preppers, nobody mocked the premise.”

Assessment:

Every morning for the last five years since Gayle’s mom moved it with us, she has let me read the front pages of the four newspapers she has delivered to our door.  I’m not allowed to muss them up, but I can read them as long as I am careful.

I was scanning through the front pages of her copies of The Buffalo News, Toronto Globe and Mail, The Niagara Falls Review and USA Today when one stopped me dead in my tracks, making me laugh out loud.

There, on USA Today’s front page, in the left margin, was a tiny little two-line blurb referring readers to page 8A where a tiny three column story revealed that the oldest Mayan calendar was just discovered in Guatemala. 

What made me laugh out loud was the headline, because it was so tiny compared to previous headlines about the Mayan calendar  — headlines that somehow seemed to make Mayan civilization relevant some four hundred years after Mayan civilization was destroyed by the Spanish conquistadores.

The headline reads; “Newly Discovered Mayan Calendar Goes Way Past 2012“.  

“So much for the supposed end of the world,” says archaeologist William Saturno of Boston University, lead author of a study in the journal Science, which reported the discovery on Thursday.

Discovered in the ruins of Xultun (SHOOL-toon) , the astronomical calendar was unearthed from a filled-in scribe’s room. While about 7 million Maya people still live in Central America today, the “Classic” Maya civilization of pyramid temples had collapsed there by about 900 A.D., leaving only a few birch-bark books dating to perhaps the 14th century as records of their astronomy, until now.

The news that the world won’t end on December 21st, 2012 is bad news for countries in Central America who were getting ready to rake in the cash from tens of thousands of Doomsday tourists planning to spend their last day on earth among the Maya.

Evidently, local economies were looking forward to Doomsday tourists concluding that their money would be worthless on December 22nd and counting on them spending it all in one last hurrah.  (Personally, I would be more concerned about what to do on December 22nd with all the broke tourists that arrived on one-way tickets.)

There were a lot of reasons why the world was supposed to end in 2012.  Over the past decade, we’ve examined most of them.  There was the Planet X, or Planet Nibiru that was supposed to collide with the earth on July 21, 2012. 

An alternative for Planet X was the Comet Elenin, which was supposed to destroy the Earth in 2012.  But last August, Elenin was hit by a solar flare while literally melted it.  By October, it wasn’t even detectable by telescopes.

If Planet X or Comet Elenin didn’t get us, then the geomagnetic reversal, or polar shift will.  According to this theory, the North Pole, which has already shifted so far that some runways had to be repainted to reflect the location of True North, will suddenly “flip” causing the planet to slip off its axis.

While it is true that the location of True North is shifting, it has been shifting ever since its discovery by James Ross in 1831.  Why would it “flip” in 2012?  Because it fit nicely with the theory of the Mesoamerican Long Count.  

The belief that 2012 has any astrophysical, metaphysical, spiritual or other supernatural significance relative to Christianity, Bible prophecy, Bible codes, God, heaven or anything else, is total New Age babble.

But that does not mean that because the Mayan Calendar is wrong, we are not actually living in the last days.

I believe that the Bible indicates we are living in the last days and that the generation born after 1948 is the generation of whom Jesus was speaking when He said, “this generation shall not pass until all these things are fulfilled.”

Bible prophecy and 2012 Doomsdayism are mutually exclusive; if one is true, the other cannot be.  The Bible predicts a future Dispensation called “The Tribulation” and specifies its’ duration at precisely 2,520 literal calendar days. 

And the Tribulation Period won’t begin until some point after the Rapture of the Church, which has not occurred yet, after which there remains at least seven years before the Tribulation concludes at the Second Coming of Christ.

Now that the Maya Long Count has been debunked, one can expect the disappointed New Age gurus to try and tar Bible prophecy with the same brush of sensationalistic hyperbole that characterized the whole 2012 phenomenon.

Get ready to hear the whole “scoffers” argument again.  But don’t let it get you down.  It’s to be expected.

In the grand scheme of things, very few Christians in these last days have been called as watchmen.  Even fewer have responded to the calling.  It’s not for everybody — for some it is too much.  God has set each of us in the place He wants us to be for this time and place in human history. 

That doesn’t mean it is a pleasant place – we had our pleasant time.  But God in His wisdom, and for reasons known only to Him, has called us – you and me and others like us – as witnesses.

He promises a special crown for us at the Bema Seat.  There are only FIVE crowns and the Watchman’s Crown is one of them.  So what made you think that earning it would be easy?  It is supposed to be hard.  Out of all the living Christians on this planet, God called YOU to bear witness for all those too afraid to look.

So, what are we to do as Christians?  Our job.  Be witnesses.  Watch and observe and give the warning.  We don’t know the day or the hour and we don’t pretend that we do.  Neither do we believe that anybody else does.  But we know that it is near, even at the door. 

The one thing I was certain of, (until today), was that the one day that Lord wouldn’t come back would be December 21st, 2012.   I was sure it wasn’t 12.21.2012 because everybody else seemed sure it was.

But that certainty died with the Long Count, which is itself in perfect harmony with Bible prophecy. 

“Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.” (Matthew 24:44)

The Evolution of Barack Obama

The Evolution of Barack Obama
Vol: 128 Issue: 10 Thursday, May 10, 2012

Back in 2008 (when he was trying to convince Christians that he was one of them), candidate Barack Hussein Obama told Rick Warren’s massive audience at the Saddleback megachurch, (to the resounding cheers of the church audience in attendance) that he opposed same-sex marriage:

“I believe that marriage is the union between a man and a woman. Now, for me as a Christian — for me — for me as a Christian, it is also a sacred union. God’s in the mix.”

Four years later, Obama decided that marriage is no longer a sacred union.  And evidently, God has been evolved out of the mix, somehow.  Obama told ABC News that his position of gay marriage has “evolved” — evidently since March, following intense discussions by his campaign inner circle.  

Some top Democrats have privately advised Obama’s inner circle that such a move could energize Democrats far beyond the gay community. The discussions have centered on Obama’s successful repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, and how it has signaled that major advances on gay rights energize young voters and other progressive Democrats, by helping recapture the historic and forward-looking aura of 2008, the source says.

“This would help in terms of reinvigorating some of the excitement from 2008,” the source says, characterizing the discussions. “It’s not just about gay people. There’s an upside with the progressive community and young people in general. Obama’s advisers are in listening mode.”

Obama is now the first president in US history to offer his unequivocal support for gay marriage, with the announcement coming, oddly enough, one day after North Carolina became the 30th state in the Union to vote to amend its state constitution to narrowly define marriage as a union between one man and one woman.

North Carolina voters ignored the howls of the Far Left and passed the Gay Marriage Amendment by an overwhelming 61% majority.  One wonders who is giving Obama political advice?  (Whoever he is, I’d like to buy him lunch.)

There are fifty states, (not fifty-seven) and thirty of them have amended their state constitutions to ban gay marriage.  By anybody’s math except Obama’s that leaves twenty states that haven’t passed constitution amendments banning gay marriage.  And only SIX states recognize gay marriage. 

That means that forty-four (or forty-nine, depending) states do NOT share President Obama’s “evolved” view.  One wonders what the heck is going on?  If I was a Democratic strategist, I’d wonder what the President’s advisors were smoking. 

(I read a report that said that one hour after Obama announced he had flip-flopped, er, evolved more than one million dollars poured into his re-election campaign from wealthy gay donors in about ninety minutes.)   

“In fact, Obama has not “evolved”—he has changed his position whenever his political fortunes required him to do so. Running for the Illinois state senate from a trendy area of Chicago in 1996, he was for gay marriage. “I favor legalizing same-sex marriages,” he wrote in answer to a questionnaire back then. In 2004, he was running for the U.S. Senate and needed to appeal to voters statewide. So he evolved, and favored civil unions but opposed homosexual “marriage.” In 2008, running for president, he said, “I believe marriage is between a man and a woman. I am not in favor of gay marriage.” Now in 2012, facing a tough re-election campaign where he needs energized supporters of gay “marriage” and has disappointed them with his refusal to give them his support, he is for it. To paraphrase John Kerry, he was for it before he was against it before he was for it again.”

Megalomania is a pyscho-pathological condition characterized by delusions of grandeur.  Philosopher Bertrand Russell interpreted megalomania this way:

“The megalomaniac differs from the narcissist by the fact that he wishes to be powerful rather than charming, and seeks to be feared rather than loved. To this type belong many lunatics and most of the great men of history.”

Fascism is what happens when a megalomaniacal leader believes that he is the embodiment of the state.  A fascist leader believes that the state takes precedence over all, and as leader, he is the state, therefore all things are about him.

Note carefully what President Obama told ABC News in announcing his flip-flop, er, evolution of thought.

“I have to tell you that over the course of several years as I talked to friends and family and neighbors, when I think about members of my own staff who are in incredibly committed monogamous relationships, same-sex relationships, who are raising kids together; when I think about those soldiers or airmen or marines or sailors who are out there fighting on my behalf and yet feel constrained, even now that ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ is gone, because they are not able to commit themselves in a marriage, at a certain point I’ve just concluded that for me personally it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same sex couples should be able to get married.”

One wonders who Obama is talking about when he refers to friends and family and neighbors who helped him overcome his opposition — his position allegedly evolved since coming to the Oval Office.  Correct me if I am wrong, but sitting presidents don’t have a lot of contact with neighbors.

And if Obama was caught talking to most of his friends (Jeremiah Wright, Bill Ayers, Bernadette Dorhn, etc.) it would make headlines.  But that’s not what grabbed my attention.

And I’m not even talking about the cynical way that Obama managed to suggest that America’s fighting forces are out there risking their lives to defend same-sex marriage.

What grabbed my attention was Obama’s slip of the tongue in which he admitted that he actually believes that America’s military forces are out there fighting on his behalf, rather than on behalf of their nation, flag, family, friends and freedom.  

Assessment:

“Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. He that loveth father or mother more than Me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household.” (Matthew 10:34-36)

Politics.  More politics. Why so much about politics?  Well, the antichrist is a politician.  He takes control of a political government through his mastery of political manipulation, deception and intrigue. 

So when a politician whose mastery of political manipulation, deception and intrigue comes to power and fundamentally transforms America from what it was into what it has become, such a situation is worthy of scrutiny by Christians watching for signs of the return of the King.

According to a Gallup Poll, fifty-three percent of Americans now believe that same-sex marriage should be recognized by law as valid, with the same rights as traditional marriages.  I’ve heard this poll cited no fewer than eight times since yesterday.

How can this be, when forty-two states have passed laws banning gay marriage?  In the first place, polls are not votes.  People tell pollsters what they think about a given issue at that particular moment.  Gallup admits that the increase in those agreeing with gay marriage came exclusively from Democrats and political independents.

Gallup also points out how a change in wording in the question had more to do with the shift in support than a change in thinking.  When Gallup substituted “same-sex marriage” for “homosexual marriage” in its question, support jumped from 37% to 46% in two years.

The poll also demonstrates the power of propaganda.  Support for gay marriage decreases with age, meaning the older you are, the less likely you are to have been indoctrinated by the education system.

So the older you are, the less likely you are to be among those who, for the first time since men and women saw each other naked, find some ambiguity in the definition of the word marriage.

President Obama cited his wife, his staff, his neighbors, his friends, the military, his children, gay couples raising his children’s friends and Jesus as all having played a role in his evolution;

“And that is that, in the end the values that I care most deeply about and she cares most deeply about is how we treat other people and, you know, I, you know, we are both practicing Christians and obviously this position may be considered to put us at odds with the views of others but, you know, when we think about our faith, the thing at root that we think about is, not only Christ sacrificing himself on our behalf, but it’s also the Golden Rule, you know, treat others the way you would want to be treated”

So Obama realizes his position puts him “at odds” with most Christians, but, as he sees it, Christians that don’t share Obama’s redefinition of marriage don’t practice the Golden Rule.  

And shame on them.

By the same logic, if my neighbor announces he is my first cousin and I don’t agree, I am not treating him the way he wants to be treated and violating the Golden Rule.  But if his parents are no relation to mine, then the relationship that would make us cousins would not exist.  Would it?

If the state redefined the definition of “cousin” to be the same thing as “neighbor” would either relationship have any actual meaning?  If  the words have no meaning, then neither would the relationships they no longer describe.

There was another story on the Drudge Report in the same section as the Obama “evolution” cluster of headlines that illustrates my point.  It tells the story of the lead singer of some punk rock band who is in the process of undergoing a sex change.  

“Gabel, who has dealt privately with gender dysphoria for years, will soon begin the process of transition, by taking hormones and undergoing electrolysis treatments.

Gabel will eventually take the name Laura Jane Grace, and will remain married to her wife Heather. “For me, the most terrifying thing about this was how she would accept the news,” says Gabel. “But she’s been super-amazing and understanding.”

Gabel said he kept his plans a secret, telling only a handful of family and friends (and anyone who reads Rolling Stone);

“I’m going to have embarrassing moments,” says Gabel, “and that won’t be fun. But that’s part of what talking to you is about – is hoping people will understand, and hoping they’ll be fairly kind.”

Fairly kind Gabel will probably get elected to the Senate, if he runs as a Democrat.

Hillary Clinton, in Geneva in December, said,

“Gay rights are human rights and human rights are gay rights.”

And the other day, Vice President Biden said he was,

“absolutely comfortable with the fact that men marrying men, women marrying women and heterosexual men and women marrying one another are entitled to the same exact rights.”

Rights, rights, rights.  Rights are very important.  Gays have the right to marry.  Women have the right to choose to abort their babies.  Muslims have the right not to be profiled.  Atheists have a right to be protected from God.

It would appear, however, that some rights are more important than others.

Americans do not have the right to unrestricted travel.  Christians do not have the right to freely practice their faith on public property.  Students do not have a right to pray, unless they are Muslim.  Unborn babies do not have the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

I evidently do NOT have the right to NOT know what somebody else does in their bedroom.  I must be informed of what they do in their bedroom and I must agree with it.  Otherwise, I am an intolerant bigot and not to be tolerated by the tolerant who won’t tolerate my intolerance.

In this generation, truth doesn’t mean what is factual, but rather, what is fashionable.  It is fashionable to lie, provided one frames it properly.  It is fashionable to pander, provided one is pandering to a fashionable constituency.  What is not fashionable is not to be spoken aloud. 

Welcome to Laodicea!  Eyesalve, anyone? 

When the Mob Rules. . .

When the Mob Rules. . .
Vol: 128 Issue: 9 Wednesday, May 9, 2012

House Democrats say they plan to offer an amendment that would overturn stand-your-ground laws like the one that Democrats blame for the Trayvon Martin shooting case.

The amendment, which would withhold some grants from states that have such laws, will come as part of the House’s debate on the Commerce Department spending bill.

“‘Shoot-first’ laws have already cost too many lives. In Florida alone, deaths due to self-defense have tripled since the law was enacted. Federal money shouldn’t be spent supporting states with laws that endanger their own people,” said Reps. Raul Grijalva of Arizona and Keith Ellison of Minnesota, the two Democrats who are offering the legislation. “This is no different than withholding transportation funds from states that don’t enforce seat-belt laws.”

Actually, yes it is.  The law in question allows citizens to use force to respond to an attack without first imposing a duty to retreat.  Under this law, if Trayvon Martin attacked George Zimmerman, then Zimmerman was within his legal rights to defend himself by using deadly force.

First, some actual background, devoid of the spin.

  • Zimmerman was on the way to the grocery store when he spotted Martin walking between two houses in his gated community.
  • Zimmerman called 911 to report a suspicious person. 
  • He was suspicious because he was walking between two houses in the rain.
  • When the 911 operator told Zimmerman not to follow Trayvon, he said “ok” and headed back to his SUV.
  • Martin began to follow Zimmerman. This is known because of where the altercation shooting took place.
  • Martin asked Zimmerman if he had a problem. When Zimmerman said “no” Martin knocked him to the ground with a punch to the face and then straddled him and started beating his head against the sidewalk.
  • An eyewitness saw Martin beating Zimmerman and heard Zimmerman call for help before firing the fatal shot. 
  • When police arrived less than 120 seconds later, Zimmerman was bleeding from the nose, lip and from lacerations to the back of his head.
  • According to the Sanford Police report, although Trayvon Martin was 17 years old, he was more than six feet tall and weighed about 160 lbs. Zimmerman, 28 is 5’8 and 185.
  • Zimmerman suspected Martin of burglary. It turns out that Martin had been suspended from school previously for possession of a backpack containing burglary tools, a watch and women’s jewelry.
  • Since all the evidence points to Zimmerman defending himself from an attack, although Zimmerman was arrested and handcuffed, the prosecutor ordered Zimmerman released. It wasn’t the police that made the call.

It is pretty obvious to anybody that looks real closely at this case, devoid of any spin, that Florida’s stand-your-ground law probably saved George Zimmerman from serious injury or death at the hands of Trayvon Martin. 

So why was Zimmerman later arrested and charged?  None of the evidence had changed.  But the media decided that Zimmerman was a white supremacist that murdered an innocent 17 year old boy “armed with nothing but a bag of Skittles.”

NBCNews was caught selectively editing the 911 tape to make Zimmerman appear guilty.  All major mainstream news outlets picked up on the “innocent Trayvon murdered by a white supremacist” line — even though Zimmerman’s voter registration card (Zimmerman is a registered Democrat) lists his race as “Hispanic.”

President Obama, knowing absolutely NOTHING about the case, added to the lynch mob mentality by including his own racially-biased opinion:

“When I think about this boy, I think about my own kids, and I think every parent in America should be able to understand why it is absolutely imperative that we investigate every aspect of this. . . If I had a son, he would look like Trayvon.”

(Since President Obama is 12% black, 12% Arab and 75% white, that seems unlikely).

Following the media blitz, the public began to demand that Zimmerman be arrested for murdering Trayvon Martin, Stand-Your-Ground law notwithstanding. 

Finally, after an internet petition garnered some two million signatures from folks who only knew what the media was telling them, the State of Florida gave in to the mob’s demands and arrested Zimmerman for second-degree murder.

Assessment:

It would appear that George Zimmerman is about to become the victim of pure, or “direct” democracy.  In a direct democracy, majority public opinion supersedes existing law.  So if one can manipulate majority public opinion, one can create laws on-the-fly as convenient.

That was the genius of the Founder’s decision to found America as a Constitutional representative republic, rather than as the “democracy” that the Far Left insists that it is.  In a Constitutional Republic, it wouldn’t matter what the public thinks.  What matters is what the law says.

That’s what the Democrats hate about the Republic.  It is why you’ll never hear a Democrat refer to America as a “republic.”  That limits their power to obeying existing laws or passing laws via the Congress. 

It is harder to manipulate Congressional Republicans than it is to manipulate a gullible public under the control of a willing media.   That is why Democrats prefer the court of public opinion where they get to make up the rules of evidence as they go along.

The word “democrat” is a compound of two Greek words (demos and kratia) which together can mean “the people’s rule” — but is just as accurately translated the “rule of the mob” or “mob rule”.

The Trayvon Martin case leaves little doubt that while America is still called a “republic” in practice, it has devolved into a form of mob rule.

When America was truly a Republic, the United States was a society in which people could, by and large, engage in any occupation or economic enterprise without a government license, permit, or regulation.

When America was truly a Republic, people could accumulate unlimited amounts of wealth without government interference, because the Constitution did not permit the government to levy taxes on income.

When America was truly a republic, the government was not permitted to take care of people — individual responsibility was the secret ingredient that made America great.

The Founders understood that the only way to guarantee that freedom would survive in the new republic was through an informed citizenry — one educated on basic rights and freedoms.

“I know no safe depositary of the ultimate powers of the society but the people themselves; and if we think them not enlightened enough to exercise their control with a wholesome discretion, the remedy is not to take it from them, but to inform their discretion by education.” – Thomas Jefferson

Jefferson also recognized that “[the People] are the only sure reliance for the preservation of our liberty.”

But survey after survey proves that most Americans are constitutionally illiterate, and America’s young people are not much better.  Despite the millions of taxpayer dollars spent on education, American schools avoid teaching the basic freedoms guaranteed in the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

That’s by design.  If Americans don’t understand how their government works, they won’t be able to tell when it is broken.  The idea is for it to appear to be so beyond repair as to require reinvention.

What we learn from the Zimmerman case is that mob rule has become part of the fabric of Americana.  “Innocent until proven guilty” only applies to certain deserving segments of American society.

Undeserving segments, such as whites, the rich, political conservatives, Christians, (and even people with white-sounding last names) can count on the kind of rough justice handed down by the mob.

Where is America in Bible prophecy?  In describing the final Church epoch, the one to which He will return at the end of the Age, Jesus wrote;

“And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write . . . I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of My mouth. Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:” (Revelation 3:14a-17)

Not only is this a perfect description of the state of the professing Church, the place named, Laodicea, (laos meaning “rights” and demos, meaning “people”) is also a compound Greek word meaning almost the same thing as “democracy.”

Urgent Prayer Request:  I spoke with Grant Jeffrey’s wife, Kaye, yesterday.  She called to me that our dear brother Grant Jeffrey has suffered a massive heart attack and is now in critical but stable condition in the ICU unit of a Toronto hospital.

Kaye said Grant’s heart had stopped for fourteen minutes before he was revived.  Tests do not yet show what damage, if any, the lack of oxygen may have caused.

Grant remains unconscious at the hospital at this time.  Kaye is an outward pillar of strength but we have known them as a couple for many years — Kaye is absolutely devoted to Grant — she must be beyond devastated. 

Grant is one of my dearest friends in ministry going back nearly twenty years now.  He has always been a friend to the OL as well.  Please pray for Grant’s full and complete recovery and, please,  pray for Kaye and the Jeffrey family.