Friday, November 28, 2008
Turkey dinner/friends/laughing, stories
Old movies: Cheaper by the Dozen, Yours, Mine, and Ours
Blogging, forums, news, and videos (stuff I never got do do on workweek)
Dollar Store for cat food, Post Office for paycheck
old movies: Possessed with Joan Crawford, Bette Davis in The Great Lie, and then Mildred Pierce with Crawford.
read New Yorker, bible, "Power of One" (fiction), newspaper, Real Evangelism (non-fiction)
Notice the lack of: buying stuff, people, forced hilarity, dysfunction, greed, misplaced Christmas activity. (Christmas is a JESUS holiday, people! Not an xBox holiday!)
turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, carrots in OJ and brown sugar, lime jello with pecans and apples and grapes, rolls, pumpkin muffins, cranberry, stuffing, sparkling grape juice, and homemade pumpkin pie and homemade blueberry pie with fresh picked blueberries and crust from scratch.
Black Friday schedule: the only shopping I did today was head to Dollar General for cat litter, cat food, and some peanuts (for my Asian dish I am making later). But did you hear what happened in Long Island this morning? At a Wal-Mart in Valley Stream, a 34 year old overnight clerk was trampled to death as unruly shoppers broke down the doors and ran over him. As he lay gasping and dying, no one stopped to aid the poor man, they were to intent on their flat screen tvs and xbox 360s. After the man was knocked down and trampled, shoppers reportedly continued to enter the store and shop for goods, until police arrived and closed the store.
A man died, and all for 50% off junk no one needs or can afford any more.
Have we descended to the realm of animals? I don't think that is even a question any more.
Thursday, November 27, 2008
By Joseph Chambers
Researching the religions of the world for a view of their “eternal heavens” is a hopeless venture. If these religions are judged by the futures they offer, they are a sad spectacle. Christianity is the one and only faith that promises a simple and beautiful life in a glorious setting worthy of human existence. All the rest of the world’s religions show signs of being created by a fallen mind or minds with no concept of a meaningful eternal life.
The saddest of all these religions is the Islamic faith. While many politicians and religious leaders claim that the Islam god, Allah, is the same god as the Judeo-Christian God, the facts confirm that this is a false claim. Nothing proves this more absolutely than the different theologies of heaven.
First, let’s look at the Islamic theology of heaven. Their heaven is a sex brothel, where women will spend eternity as sex slaves. Any woman that would ever embrace Islam must be ignorant of this fact. What woman would want to be one of the many wives, along with seventy-two virgins, that serve one man with sex for eternity?
The prophet Mohammed described his view with the following words, “The smallest reward for the people of paradise is an abode where there are 80,000 servants and 72 wives, over which stands a dome decorated with pearls, aquamarine, and ruby, as wide as the distance from Al-Jabiyyah [a Damascus suburb] to Sana’a .” (Surah Al-Rahman 55, 72, as interpreted by Ibn Kathir, who died in 1373 CE).
Here are quotes directly from the Koran:
“As for the righteous, they shall surely triumph. Theirs shall be gardens and vineyards, and high-bosomed virgins for companions: a truly overflowing cup.” (Koran 78:31)
“...They will sit with bashful, dark-eyed virgins, as chaste as the sheltered eggs of ostriches.” (Koran 37:40-48)
“...Yes and We shall wed them to dark-eyed houris (beautiful virgins).” (Koran 44:51-55)
“...They shall recline on couches ranged in rows. To dark-eyed houris (virgins) we shall wed them...” (Koran 52:17-20)
“In them will be bashful virgins neither man nor Jinn will have touched before. Then which of the favours of your Lord will you deny?" (Koran 55:56-57)
“Virgins as fair as corals and rubies. Then which of the favours of your Lord will you deny?" (Koran 55:57-58)
“...We created the houris (the beautiful women) and made them virgins, loving companions for those on the right hand...” (Koran 56:7-40)
"In each there shall be virgins chaste and fair... Dark eyed virgins sheltered in their tents whom neither man nor Jinn will have touched before...” (Koran 55:70-77)
Not only are there virgins in multiplied numbers, but, also, dashing and handsome young boys ready to be devoured in homosexual activities. The Islam pornographic brothel includes the darkest possible sin of men raping innocent young boys. These quotes from the Koran document these horrible acts:
“Round about them will serve, to them, boys (handsome) as pearls well-guarded.” (Koran 52:24)
“Round about them will serve boys of perpetual freshness.” (Koran 56:17)
“And round about them will serve boys of perpetual freshness: if thou seest them, thou wouldst think them scattered pearls.” (Koran 76:19)
While I try to spare you the descriptive and vulgar language that extends far beyond what I am writing, I must mention the sex market promised by Prophet Mohammed. In the Hadiths, Mohammed extends the talk of virgins and boys to promise a free sex market, where there is no end of choices for additional sex beyond the wives, 72 virgins, and young boys. “Ali reported that the Apostle of Allah said, ‘There is in Paradise a market wherein there will be no buying or selling, but will consist of men and women. When a man desires a beauty, he will have intercourse with them.’” (Al Hadis, Vol. 4, p. 172, No. 34)
The only possible creator of this debauchery is the Prince of Darkness, the fallen malevolent, the blasphemer of the Father – Lucifer himself. This fallen prince and all his discontented angels and men are on a subway to Hell. This subway is gaining speed and is soon to arrive at the depot of darkness.
When we stop to compare the Christian Heaven that fills the Bible from Genesis to Revelation with the Islamic heaven (Paradise), we are left with nothing to compare. The Islamic heaven is not a heaven after all, but a brothel where sick men indulge in lustful activities uninhibited by moral restraints. I cannot find one promise to the Islamic women except the task of watching the men live out the wildest description of sex orgies ever recorded. There is doubtless no pornographic book more vulgar and debauched than the Islamic theology of their heaven. A sex market that men can visit and choose a woman at will with which to have open sex has to be at the very bottom of the depravity of fallen mankind.
The Heaven promised in the Holy Bible is rich, pure, God-centered, and reserved for the pure saints that have turned from the filthy world of lust. Our glorified bodies will exemplify the highest morality possible. This glorious life is so far removed from the base appetite of sex that the thought of such will not even come to mind. The joy of our Father and our Savior, Jesus Christ, will be the highest expression of eternal life. The New Heaven and the New Earth will be centered round a New Jerusalem so spectacular that our imagination can only see the blinding light of it all.
The city of twelve levels will be surrounded by jasper walls and pearly gates. Each of the twelve foundations will be enhanced by priceless jewels from pure sapphires to the royal purple amethysts. Streets will be paved with gold and the Light of the city will be the Lord Jesus Christ – the Light of the world. Angels will welcome the saints as they exit and/or enter the city. The River of Life will flow out of God’s throne and the Tree of Life will line its banks.
Our Bible is filled with the way that leads to this eternal reward. Jesus Christ paid the debt of sin for all that choose to surrender to His eternal will. The Heaven of our Holy Bible is a pure place; purchased by His pure blood and offered to every soul that will turn from the lust of life to the “Way, the Truth, and the Life” -- Jesus Christ.
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Today was one of those days. School is out for the rest of the week due to Thanksgiving holiday. I stayed up last night until 12:30, feeling like a kid who's getting away with something. I slept like a baby until 6:30 and then, sighing blissfully, laughed at the clock. "Today you have no power over me!" bwa ha ha!
I got up at 8 and shuffled to the kitchen, and first order of business is making coffee and booting up computer. They are a tie in terms of importance for my well-being, I wish I could do both at the same time. As I settled down with my first steaming cup at 8:20, the phone rang.
Hmmm, that's early, I thought.
"Let's go vote!" my friend said. (Georgia is having a runoff for senator. Early voting starts today.)
"What?" Information doesn't register before coffee circulates. It is a known fact. Ask any biologist. Make sure to ask after he's had some coffee.
"No, thanks, I am not dressed or even showered."
"I'll give you 15 minutes, let's go! We'll buy donuts and coffee later!" Honk Honk
"You're in the driveway??"
"Naw, I think I will stay right here."
"I thought you were more spontaneous than that!"
"My spontaneity is carefully planned."
They were persistent, though his wife had said to him that I wouldn't be going because she knew I want to stay home in the mornings on my days off. Now, it is so sweet that a couple of friends think of me as they drive by and want to scoop me up for coffee. Real sweet!
But before my coffee, I might as well be a dog.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Who can forget the famous "I'd like to teach the world to sing" Coca Cola ad? 1971...a more innocent time, when we thought singing and coke would solve it all. Sort of like now, when we think singing and hope will solve it all. Here is a page written about the inspiration of the ad and how it came about.
Clara Peller Wendy's 'Where's the Beef" were good too. No matter how many times I watch it I laugh when she says "I don't think there's anybody back there".
I wrote before about the Geico cavemen ads, which were great. My favorite was the "I'll have the duck with the mango salsa." I loved mango salsa when it first came out but now it's a way trendy food item you never find on any menu, like sun-dried tomatoes. LOL.
My new latest crush is the curly headed slacker whose credit went to pot and pals around with his slacker posse singing their blues while a cranky old lady tuts tuts him from the background. You remember the guys singing in the Pirate Restaurant?
I like the ditties, though the latest one (number 6) is a bit hard rock for me and you can't understand the lyrics. But my favorite thing of all is the old lady. She's in the Pirate Restaurant, the Bike commercial as the crossing guard and the Ren Faire in a neat dress. She just cracks me up. I have read that the ad writers plan to put the pirate hat in all the ads and keep the cranky old lady too. Scowl on, Old Lady!
Monday, November 24, 2008
It's rainy and cold here today and I am thrilled my landlord got the heater going. The pilot light had kept sputtering out. The heat would work OK but when the room got to temp and the thermo clicked over to pilot, the light would go out. Really annoying when it happened at 2 AM and I awoke to a freezing apartment at 6 am. He was responsive and came right over, nice guy that he is. It makes a difference when I can keep the heat on consistently.
I have no clue if I am getting a call to sub tomorrow but for sure I am off for three days after that. On Wed. I am helping a friend most of the day to get everything ready so she doesn't have to cook much Thursday. She is feeling pretty sick with a sinus cold. Thursday of course is the turkey dinner and visiting with my friend and her husband and whoever else they invite over. Friday is a day I get totally off with no social or church commitments. I don't know what I want to do yet.
Bendzunas Glass always has a glass blowing demo and an open house with munchies that Friday after Thanksgiving, so I may go over and see what's up. I bought a bunch of tailings last year and I loved them. They are the little buttons of glass that come off the end of the pontle, they are only 25 cents a piece. I bought some and put them in a small, clear glass and I like to look at them. So that might be my big night out, watching glass blowing again and adding to my pontle tailings!
Saturday is always chores: I do my vacuuming, laundry, shopping and bathroom scrubbing Saturdays so I have Sundays off to get ready for the Sunday School Assembly and church. And then it's back to the grind on Monday.
We had our church Thanksgiving supper last night. You know that movie trailer they are showing on TV with Reese Witherspoon for "Four Christmases?" There's a scene with the southern lady talking to Reese in the kitchen, explaining how to make a salad and what goes into all her layers. "mayo and apple and mayo and grapes and sour cream and then mayo...the gag line is that she says Mayo every three seconds and then finishes with "My doctor told me to eat more salad." THAT IS TRUE. Salad around here consists of jello and/or mayo, sour cream and repeat. Above, fried meats
Left, the cheesy, buttery, creamy casseroles. Yum yum! The buffet table last night, fried chicken...then the section with casseroles with sour cream or cream of mushroom soup... and last, "salads" all with layers of mayo! Not one lettuce leaf, not one green thing, (oops except for green beans in...sour cream). I swear I will have a heart attack withing five years of living in GA. But of course it is all SO GOOD! The ladies around here sure can cook. Left, the salads. The white with dots are grapes with sour cream I think, or mayo, or a combo with whipped cream. The cherries are pears with mayo and cheese and cherries on top.
So that's it, nice and quiet here, the gas hissing quietly and the raindrops in the tin awnings, and the cats sleeping and me typing are the only sounds.
Have a great night!
Below, Bendzunas taking out an ornament from the oven, then shaping it, then cutting it off the pontle. Last year's open house.
Saturday, November 22, 2008
12-year-old charged after deliberately "breaking wind" in class
"NOVEMBER 21 -- A 12-year-old Florida student was arrested earlier this month after he "deliberately passed gas to disrupt the class," according to police. The child, who was also accused of shutting off the computers of classmates at Stuart's Spectrum Jr./Sr. High School, was busted November 4 for disruption of a school function. A Martin County Sheriff's Office report, a copy of which you'll find below, notes that the 4' 11" offender admitted that he "continually disrupted his classroom environment by breaking wind and shutting off several computers." The boy, whose name was redacted from the police report released today, was turned over to his mother following the arrest. The young perp turned 13 on November 15."
The most I've had to deal with is burping. I feel for the teacher who had to put up with the farts. LOL! But arresting him?
Saturday March 27, 2004
Catherine Falsani, Religion reporter with Chicago Sun Times
The actual interview is lengthy and eye opening. I excerpted the salient points to illustrate President-elect Obama's utter refutation of the basic principles of Christianity. To be sure his answers are phrased eloquently but his words are still poison in a pie. Here, Obama discusses his Christian beliefs, born-again, and sin. First are Obama's answers and second are the biblical citations which illustrate that Obama is not Christian.
FalsaniChristianity: A Christian doesn't "draw from other faiths." Either you are a Christian or you are not. Being a Christian means you follow Christ, completely, and you don't call the God of the Universe 'a higher power.' He is God. The First Commandment says "I am the Lord your God. You shall have no other gods before Me." Exodus 20:2-3
What do you believe?
"I am a Christian. So, I have a deep faith. I draw from the Christian faith. On the other hand, I was born in Hawaii where obviously there are a lot of Eastern influences. I lived in Indonesia, the largest Muslim country in the world, between the ages of six and 10. My father was from Kenya, and although he was probably most accurately labeled an agnostic, his father was Muslim. And I'd say, probably, intellectually I've drawn as much from Judaism as any other faith.
So, I'm rooted in the Christian tradition. I believe that there are many paths to the same place, and that there is a higher power, that we are connected as a people."
Truth: There are not 'many paths'. Jesus IS the Truth. Anyone who denies that is not a Christian: "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." John 14:6. One path. Period.
Falsani:Doubt: Religion comes with a big dose of doubt? Not if you are a Christian!! "'If you can'?" said Jesus. "Everything is possible for him who believes."Mark 9:23
So you got yourself born again?
Yeah, although I retain from my childhood and my experiences growing up a suspicion of dogma. And I'm not somebody who is always comfortable with language that implies I've got a monopoly on the truth, or that my faith is automatically transferable to others.
I'm a big believer in tolerance. I think that religion at its best comes with a big dose of doubt. I'm suspicious of too much certainty in the pursuit of understanding just because I think people are limited in their understanding.
Understanding: People in the Holy Spirit are not limited in understanding. Obama looks at the world through the lens of himself. Through that lens, to be sure, people are limited in understanding. But the Holy Spirit gives all understanding: Colossians 2:2 "That their hearts might be comforted, being knit together in love, and unto all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the acknowledgement of the mystery of God, and of the Father, and of Christ;"
Falsani:Sin: Romans 3:23 "For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard." Sin is failing GOD'S standard, not our own. In his answers, Obama often points to himself, not the Lord. Jeremiah 17:5 "Cursed are those who put their trust in mere humans, who rely on human strength."
What is sin?
Being out of alignment with my values.
Falsani:Sin: "But your iniquities (sin) have separated you from your God; your sins have hidden His face from you, so that He will not hear." Isaiah 59:2
What happens if you have sin in your life?
I think it's the same thing as the question about heaven. If I'm true to myself and my faith, that is its own reward. When I'm not true to it, that's its own punishment.
Self: Again Obama relies on self. You cannot do that for "the heart is deceitful above all things." Jer 17:9 "Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature." Romans 13:14
Reward: 23 "Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, because great is your reward in heaven." Luke 6:23 God rewards and punishes, not the self. Obama is essentially saying he is his own reward! LOL, not possible. The wages of sin is death.
Falsani:Again with the self. A better answer to this question would have been: When I'm praying to God. When I'm singing hymns praising Jesus. When I'm reading His Holy Word. Nowhere does Obama mention the most spiritual thing possible: relationship with Jesus. No, when he feels most spiritual is when he's gazing at his own navel and contemplating himself. Again.
What are you doing when you feel the most centered, the most aligned spiritually?
I think I already described it. It's when I'm being true to myself.
Falsani:Jesus: He is not a "historical figure." He is not a "powerful person." "He is not just a wonderful teacher." 2 John 1:7--"For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ cometh in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist." Obama is a Christ denier and a blasphemer.
Who's Jesus to you?
(He laughs nervously)
Jesus is an historical figure for me, and he's also a bridge between God and man, in the Christian faith, and one that I think is powerful precisely because he serves as that means of us reaching something higher. And he's also a wonderful teacher. I think it's important for all of us, of whatever faith, to have teachers in the flesh and also teachers in history.
It is clear President Elect Obama is not a Christian. He professes such, but he is not. Do not be deceived. ""He who is not with Me is against Me; and he who does not gather with Me scatters." Matthew 12:30
Friday, November 21, 2008
Here is a transcript:
DJ: One more quick question. Is the spot where President-Elect Obama's birthplace over in Kenya, is that going to be a spot to go visit where he was born?
Ogego: The place is already an attraction. His paternal grandmother is still alive...
DJ: But the birthplace, will they put up a marker there?
Ogego: It is already well known.
The DJ later said he phrased his question "President Elect Obama" on purpose so the distinction from Obama's father, whose name is also Barack Obama, would be clear to the Ambassador.
Earlier, his paternal grandmother said Obama was born in Kenya, reported here
The Supreme Court is holding a conference on Dec 5th to determine if the citizenship case has merit. If four of the nine Justices vote to hear the case in full, oral argument may be scheduled. The conference is scheduled for December 5, 2008, ten days before the meeting of the Electoral College whereupon the College is scheduled to vote Obama into office.
The Ambassador identified himself as well as the Secretary when she put the DJs through, as His Excellency Peter Ogego. Here is a link that shows His Excellency's photo and his name, he really IS the Ambassador:
Here is the link of the audio. Listen to His Excellency confirm Obama was born in Kenya: minute 12:15 to minute 13:00
WOW! You know, of course, this means he cannot be President. Just as many of us have been saying all along.
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
An peaceful, smiling, praying elderly woman is attacked by gays in a mob scene that includes close threats, screams, ripping her cross out of her hand and stomping on it ...
An angry gay mob taunts, threatens, accosts, and surrounds peaceful Christians singing Amazing Grace in a San Francisco gay district to the extent that police had to protectively escort them out ...
Lesbians invade a Michigan church service, scream, "It's OK to be gay!" and "Jesus was gay!" & kiss at the pulpit and throw condoms and perverse literature at the parishioners, including children ...
Michelle Malkin calls it "the insane rage of the anti-Prop. 8 mob." Like these insane haters: "Daniel Ginnes carried a banner declaring: "No More Mr Nice Gay." Brian Lindsey held up a sign billing Joseph Smith, founder of the Church of the Latter Day Saints, as a "prophet, polygamist, paedophile." Hundreds of others simply chanted: "Mormon scum" the London Independent reports. Enthusiastically shooting themselves in the foot, they are exhibiting mob rage whose depths make their own allies in the movement uncomfortable.
President-elect Barack Obama is on the record opposed to gay marriage, but he has said nothing about these NUMEROUS protests. He is the supposed agent of change and a "new politics" of tolerance and civility...and he has said nothing. He is the country's new leader...and he has said nothing. Why not? He could do a lot to HELP tamp down the national feelings of fury. But he has not chosen to do anything. So I ask you, is this Barack Obama's America?
Though our country is founded on mutual tolerance and free but civil speech, this tenet is positively unraveling and as it unspools the country unravels with it. The level of contempt, intolerance, violence and hatred has crossed the line from troubling to terrifying.
Just as the bible said it would.
"WASHINGTON — Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York has reservations about accepting an appointment as secretary of state in the Obama administration, an adviser to Mrs. Clinton who is familiar with her thinking said on Tuesday."
So a newspaper claiming to be the "Newspaper of Record" for the entire nation uses as the basis for their lead story comments from a secret person who is psychic. And it is the lead sentence. Wow. Makes me long for the days of Uri Geller and Hearst newspapers. At least they are what they are. The New York Times fell from grace long ago. (Said a secret source familiar with my thinking.)
"We have lost the understanding that in a democracy, we have a mutual obligation to one another — that we cannot measure the greatness of our society by the strongest and richest of us, but we have to measure our greatness by the least of these. That we have to compromise and sacrifice for one another in order to get things done. That is why I am here, because Barack Obama is the only person in this who understands that. That before we can work on the problems, we have to fix our souls. Our souls are broken in this nation."
"Government doesn’t exist to save souls; it exists to ensure domestic tranquility and provide for the common defense. If I feel my soul needs saving, the very last place I’d look (in the US) for a savior would be Washington DC or Capitol Hill. I’ll trust God and Jesus Christ with my soul, and I’m not going to mistake Barack Obama for either one."
I think the fundamental problem is that we have forgotten what government exists for. Thomas Jefferson said in his first inaugural address:
"A wise and frugal government, which shall restrain men from injuring one another, which shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. This is the sum of good government, and this is necessary to close the circle of our felicity." So what were their ideas about the core functions of the government? The Federalist Papers contain those thoughts and debates.
In the paper "Determining Core Functions of Government," Bob Williams writes, "The Founders established twenty specific federal powers for the named purposes of providing protection from foreign invasion, domestic peace, justice under the law, necessary and clearly defined public works, and foreign and interstate relations. They believed government existed to bring cohesiveness, legitimacy and protection to a nation declaring itself sovereign. They were repulsed by a government that would take its citizens’ wealth, exploit its people, and send its youth into wars birthed from ego."
They would be further repulsed by the ego of a Presidential candidate who promotes himself as desiring to serve because he, not God, is a fixer of souls.
I'm always astounded at the diversity of our planet. I traveled throughout the world and saw so many interesting and wondrous things. Everything from sea slugs on the desert ocean floor of the Bahamas to tapirs in the Amazon to capybaras swimming in the River Arno in Florence...all interesting, all good.
Now they find these teeny tiny tarsiers in Indonesia they thought went extinct 85 years ago. We've always known about regular sized tarsiers, but these gremlin like creatures are no bigger than a mouse and have eyes as big as dimes. A real-live gremlin!
Gremlins Thought Extinct, Found After 85 Years
Mouse-sized primates called pygmy tarsiers, not seen alive in 85 years, have come out of hiding from a mountaintop in a cloud forest in Indonesia.Weighing just 2 ounces (57 grams), they resemble mini gremlin creatures, as they have big eyes and are covered in dense coats of fur to keep warm in a damp, chilly habitat.
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Monday, November 17, 2008
Murdoch to media: You dug yourself a huge hole
Rupert Murdoch said today as part of The Boyer Lecture Series: "With newspapers cutting back and predictions of even worse times ahead, Rupert Murdoch said the profession may still have a bright future if it can shake free of reporters and editors who he said have forfeited the trust and loyalty of their readers."
He continued: "My summary of the way some of the established media has responded to the internet is this: it's not newspapers that might become obsolete. It's some of the editors, reporters, and proprietors who are forgetting a newspaper's most precious asset: the bond with its readers," said Murdoch, the chairman and chief executive officer of News Corp. He made his remarks as part of a lecture series sponsored by the Australian Broadcast Corporation."
"Murdoch to journalists: Shape up or risk extinction: Murdoch, whose company's holdings also include MySpace and the Wall Street Journal, criticized what he described as a culture of "complacency and condescension" in some newsrooms."
"The complacency stems from having enjoyed a monopoly--and now finding they have to compete for an audience they once took for granted. The condescension that many show their readers is an even bigger problem. It takes no special genius to point out that if you are contemptuous of your customers, you are going to have a hard time getting them to buy your product. Newspapers are no exception."
I have seen this attitude over and over. It permeated so deeply in the newspaper of my former town in Maine that I started a competing paper just so we could get real news, unfiltered of bias and unadorned with derision. The paper, called "The Gray News" had been a monopoly in town since the beginning, which, by the time my paper rolled around, was over thirty years. The paper had failed to continue to bond with it readers, having become so far out of touch and so insular that they thought the community view was represented in the few hangers on that were still involved with it. That is a deadly attitude. Newspapers must strive to remain fresh and keep up with the times of their communities as they evolve and grow.
They had also been extremely contemptuous of readers, even resorting to tit-for-tats from the editor against those letter-writers who tried valiantly to present a differing point of view. Eventually they became tired of being berated in print and they ceased to contribute, thus cementing the one-sidedness and narrowness of the points of view the paper did publish.
As I went along, I noticed that this tendency was not contained to my town but to many weeklies, especially those volunteer-run or having lower professional standards. Now, Murdoch is telling us, that tendency has "graduated" to larger papers who should know better. No matter how small or how large, the failure to bond with readers and the failure to treat them with courtesy and respect spells a death knell every time. The difference nowadays is that when a paper folds, there are so many other news outlets to revert to that mourning the bygone weekly hardly merits a tear.
Newspapers can still prosper, if as Murdoch said, "papers provide readers with news they can trust." Ain't that the truth. Give them news, gain their trust in the credibility of that news, and encourage hearty and civil debate about that news. It is a winning combination that never fails.
Good newspapers around the world, I salute you.
Sunday, November 16, 2008
"How do selected instances of social ostracism, job discrimination, and the restrictions of our marriage laws rise to the level of mass ethnic subjugation? When were the gays or their ancestors forcibly removed from their ancestral homes, enslaved, beaten, starved, sold, and then – once freed – discriminated against and segregated?"
"I do not see how the social difficulties of the gay man or woman come close to matching the history of slavery and racial discrimination. Gay men and women have never lived with anything like the “No Coloreds Allowed” lunch counters and water fountains, or segregated schools and communities of America’s past."
Maine Bishop Richard Malone wrote to all Maine Catholics this week: "To redefine marriage to include same-sex couples is to strip marriage of an essential component, namely the ability and obligation to procreate," the bishop said in the letter, read in all Maine diocese on Sunday. "To strip marriage of this essential component is to render marriage meaningless and open it up to endless revision and redefinition."
"If people believe the gay marriage cause has legitimacy, then by all means they should argue their case – but let’s agree that we can and should discuss rights issues without erroneously comparing the suffering of one group to the suffering of another."
Saturday, November 15, 2008
Alan Keyes lawsuit warns America may see 'usurper' in Oval Office
"The California secretary of state should refuse to allow the state's 55 Electoral College votes to be cast in the 2008 presidential election
"The legal action today is just the latest is a series of challenges, some of which have gone as high as the U.S. Supreme Court, over the issue of Obama's status as a "natural-born citizen," a requirement set by the U.S. Constitution."
Where' there's smoke, there's fire. This is not the first court case to allege Obama needs to assuage suspicions that he is not a natural-born citizen and thus not constitutionally qualified to be President. PA, CA, WA, CT and other states have also filed suits. Wonder where this will all lead.
Friday, November 14, 2008
Would you have the courage of your convictions enough to remain calm in the throes of an angry mob? Food for thought.
Thursday, November 13, 2008
"NEW YORK (AP) - MSNBC was the victim of a hoax when it reported that an adviser to John McCain had identified himself as the source of an embarrassing story about former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin, the network said Wednesday."
"David Shuster, an anchor for the cable news network, said on air Monday that Martin Eisenstadt, a McCain policy adviser, had come forth and identified himself as the source of a Fox News Channel story saying Palin had mistakenly believed Africa was a country instead of a continent. isenstadt identifies himself on a blog as a senior fellow at the Harding Institute for Freedom and Democracy. Yet neither he nor the institute exist; each is part of a hoax dreamed up by a filmmaker named Eitan Gorlin and his partner, Dan Mirvish."
Duh. It's just not possible that a grown woman who has been as successful as Governor Palin is would not know basic facts. The story stunk on the face of it, with one anonymous source citing unbelievable rumors in a climate of political backbiting at the tail end of a hate campaign. Sheesh.
I taught my third graders today about the countries in the continent of Africa. Sheesh. Again.
I just have really hard time watching old 80s tv shows. The Golden Girls, The early Cosby Show episodes ... funny, well done, good writing. So what's the problem? Horrors - the fashion. Shudder. It looks really really bad twenty 25 years out.
Last Thursday was the last day of school for the week. Friday was Halloween. Of course Thursday was full of merriment with Halloween parties and costumes and talk of 'when can we eat the cupcakes?' The kids dressed up. But so did the adults at school. All of them. Way up. I was not dressed in any sort of a costume. One little first grader asked, "What did you come as?"
"I came as the mean old substitute." Laughter.
Today I was back at the school subbing in a third grade. The first graders from last Thursday's class passed me in the hall. "Look!" Said one boy. "It's the mean old substitute!"
The para-pro cracked up. I did too. Yup, that's me. The mean old sub. LOL
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
surely not! Thank you vets.
"As He died to make men holy, let us die to make men free," and they served to make men free, too. I am grateful for their service. I hope you are too.
Monday, November 10, 2008
Jarret told Brokaw that "given the daunting challenges that we face, it's important that president elect Obama is prepared to really take power and begin to rule day one."
Sunday, November 09, 2008
"Fighting erupted between Greek Orthodox and Armenian monks at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, the traditional site of Christ's crucifixion."
"Israeli police have had to restore order at one of Christianity's holiest sites after a mass brawl broke out between monks in Jerusalem's Old City."
"Two monks from each side were detained as dozens of worshippers traded kicks and punches at the shrine, said police."
"Trouble flared as Armenians prepared to mark the annual Feast of the Cross"
It reminds me of the time a volatile Armenian guy I used to know got into a fight at the dump with another guy over some trivial local matter. I guess they feel passionately about things. But decorum, please, decorum!
“Obama will call on citizens of all ages to serve America, by developing a plan to require 50 hours of community service in middle school and high school and 100 hours of community service in college every year.” Screen shot of the web page here. Require?
Indeed, prior to the election, the campaign website language made community service sound quite voluntary. After Obama was elected, this "requirement" language popped up. The language of requiring students to serve and the creation of a "Classroom Corps" sparked a surge of criticism from bloggers for bringing back memories of the much-publicized video of marching Obama youth and Obama's "civilian national security force," which the candidate said in July would be just as powerful and well-funded as the U.S. military. Just plain creepy. Anyway, the language was quickly removed, a tuition incentive was added, and softer language put in its place.
Perhaps someone let Obama know that indentured servitude is prohibited by the 13th Amendment to the US Constitution.
Canada Free Press
A media analyst says MSNBC host Chris Matthews effectively admitted yesterday he was an unpaid member of Barack Obama's press office.
Matthews: “Yeah, well, you know what? I want to do everything I can to make this thing work, this new presidency work, and I think that --
Scarborough: “Is that your job? You just talked about being a journalist!”
Matthews: “Yeah, it is my job. My job is to help this country...because this country needs a successful presidency.”
Later Matthews refused to get drawn into the conversation about turmoil in the OBama Administration, instead saying that as a reporter he was unwilling to "question motives."
No it is not the journalists' job to help his country by helping the government. It is helping the country by informing the citizens.
The Society of Professional Journalists' Code of Ethics says Journalists should (among other things):
— Distinguish between advocacy and news reporting,
— Be free of obligation to any interest other than the public's right to know,
— Be vigilant and courageous about holding those with power accountable.
It is NOT the journalists' job to "help" the government. It IS the journalists' job to present news and hold the government accountable. Chris Matthews is not doing his job.
In another case of media failure this week, I was disappointed in Newsweek and Fox News. They both broke the cardinal rule about anonymous sources and failed to correctly assess the information they were given as not newsworthy.
Newsweek reported that an anonymous inside McCain staffer claimed that Palin sailed into the room where Steve Schmidt and Mark Salter were waiting wearing nothing but a towel, that Governor Palin didn't know that Africa was a continent, nor did she know the countries in NAFTA, among other things. These turned out to be lies. Mark Salter called Greta Van Susteren On The Record show and well, went on the record and said the towel thing “Never happened.” Turns out the other items the "anonymous sources" said were lies too.
That's the danger of allowing anonymous sources to pass as news. The items reported by Newsweek and Fox were rumors. Neither media got on the record comments. Neither looked at any documents or receipts or corroborated the anonymous source's claims. Neither went to McCain or Palin to ask them for their side. The SPJ Ethics Code says:
— Test the accuracy of information from all sources and exercise care to avoid inadvertent error. Deliberate distortion is never permissible.
— Diligently seek out subjects of news stories to give them the opportunity to respond to allegations of wrongdoing.
— Identify sources whenever feasible. The public is entitled to as much information as possible on sources' reliability.
— Always question sources’ motives before promising anonymity.
Newsweek & Fox failed on all counts above. The media has forgotten what their job is and how to do it.
Walter Lippmann said once that "There can be no higher law in journalism than to tell the truth and to shame the devil." Unfortunately Chris Matthews, Newsweek and Fox News shamed themselves...and the devil is laughing.
Saturday, November 08, 2008
As I sit at my table writing, Bert peeps for the milk ring. He is a peeper, not deigning to meow, or even growl. He makes tiny bird noises. That's why I named him Bert. Kind of like 'bird' and kind of like the noise he makes. So: 'Peep?' Pleeeease, mom?'
I toss the milk ring and he races after it like no tomorrow. He likes to grab it with his mouth and put it on his paw like a bracelet. Then fling it all over the room. 'Wheee! This is fun! What's coming next is even more fun! Bwa ha ha'
He usually flings it toward any piece of furniture that is low to the ground that has an inch or two of access under it, like this bookcase here. The bed is high. That'd be too easy. 'I'm just going over here to the BOOKCASE and play here for a minute. Yeah, that's it.'
'Oh noes! I accidentally on purpose pushed it WAY under the bookcase, Mom, I can't get it! Peep! Peep! Peep! Peep! Peep! Peep!
So because the peeps are so cute, and after thirty of them, pretty annoying, I get up, fish the milk ring out with a stick, and toss it again. TRAINED!
Thursday, November 06, 2008
Although I have not always been the most outspoken advocate of President-Elect Barack Obama, today I would like to congratulate him and add my voice to the millions of fellow citizens who are celebrating his historic and frightening election victory. I don't care whether you are a conservative or a liberal -- when you saw this inspiring young African-American rise to our nation's highest office I hope you felt the same sense of patriotic pride that I experienced, no matter how hard you were hyperventilating with deep existential dread.
Yes, I know there are probably other African-Americans much better qualified and prepared for the presidency. Much, much better qualified. Hundreds, easily, if not thousands, and without any troubling ties to radical lunatics and Chicago mobsters. Gary Coleman comes to mind. But let's not let that distract us from the fact that Mr. Obama's election represents a profound, positive milestone in our country's struggle to overcome its long legacy of racial divisions and bigotry. It reminds us of how far we've come, and it's something everyone in our nation should celebrate in whatever little time we now have left.
Less than fifty years ago, African-Americans were barred from public universities, restaurants, and even drinking fountains in many parts of the country. On Tuesday we came together and transcended that shameful legacy, electing an African-American to the country's top job -- which, in fact, appears to be his first actual job. Certainly, it doesn't mean that racism has disappeared in America, but it is an undeniable mark of progress that a majority of voters no longer consider skin color nor a dangerously gullible naivete as a barrier to the presidency.
It's also heartening to realize that as president Mr. Obama will soon be working hand-in-hand with a former Ku Klux Klan Grand Wizard like Senator Robert Byrd to craft the incoherent and destructive programs that will plunge the American economy into a nightmare of full-blown sustained depression. As Vice President-Elect Joe Biden has repeatedly warned, there will be difficult times ahead and the programs will not always be popular, or even sane. But as we look out over the wreckage of bankrupt coal companies, nationalized banks, and hyperinflation, we can always look back with sustained pride on the great National Reconciliation of 2008. Call me an optimist, but I like to think when America's breadlines erupt into riots it will be because of our shared starvation, not the differences in our color.
It's obvious that this newfound pride is not confined to Americans alone. All across the world, Mr. Obama's election has helped mend America's tattered image as a racist, violent cowboy, willing to retaliate with bombs at the slightest provocation. The huge outpouring of international support following the election shows that America can still win new friendships while rebuilding its old ones, and provides Mr. Obama with unprecedented diplomatic leverage over our remaining enemies. When Russian tanks start pouring into eastern Europe and Iranian missiles begin raining down on Jerusalem, their leaders will know they will be facing a man who not only conquered America's racial divide but the hearts of the entire Cannes film community. And those Al Qaeda terrorists plotting a dirty nuke or chemical attack on San Francisco face a stark new reality: while they may no longer need to worry about US Marines, they are looking down the barrel of a strongly worded diplomatic condemnation by a Europe fully united in their deep sympathy for surviving Americans.
So for now, let's put politics aside and celebrate this historic milestone. In his famous speech at the Lincoln Memorial 45 years ago, Dr. King said "I have a dream that one day my children will live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character." Let us now take pride that Tuesday we Americans proved that neither thing matters anymore.
Wednesday, November 05, 2008
For those of you to whom I was speaking with about this at the Good News Club today, that I mentioned my friend in Maine had noticed a Communist Flag being waved at Grant Park Obama celebration...yup, it's true.
Above is the photo and below is the video.
Perhaps these young celebrants think a 'commie' flag is retro chic. Or a pretty adornment meaning nothing. Or perhaps, they know something we do not know. But soon will.
The America we knew is dying...the ideals upon which we were founded are but a wisp of a memory for 63 million people who voted to dilute them. But not to us.
Though most of us are shaking our heads in amazement that this person Barak Obama could have hoodwinked 63 million voters and most of the electoral college...we do have an opportunity over the next little while to be salt and light in an increasingly chaotic world.
We can demonstrate the peace that is our eternal security which is Jesus Christ as Savior. As the times become ever more dire, let's remember our own lives are but a vapor, and share the Good News while we can. For surely while the sight of an enemy's flag waved in jubilation over our sacred political process is disheartening, let us not be disheartened.
For Jesus lives!
In His Name,
Jesus is coming soon. Are you ready?
Luke 21:28 (KJV)
Already Iran is making belligerent threats to the US, Russia moved missiles next to Poland and a barrage of rockets erupted in Israel at Gaza.
And so it begins!
But Christians, remember God "changes times and seasons;
he sets up kings and deposes them.
He gives wisdom to the wise
and knowledge to the discerning.
22 He reveals deep and hidden things;
he knows what lies in darkness,
and light dwells with him." (Daniel 2)
And Obama is NOT that light. Pray for our country and gird your loins America.
Tuesday, November 04, 2008
So this morning dawned bright, warm, and sunny. Temperatures are a pleasant upper 60s already and after my morning ablutions and coffee, I left for Danielsville and the County polling station. I was worried about the lines and the waiting, so I brought my book with me and a thermos of coffee, anticipating standing outside in line for quite a while. However, the only other person preceding me into the polls was a young woman carrying a portable car-seat with tiny baby inside. She slowed the works only because all the old ladies who staff the polling station each wanted to coo and cluck over the baby. And they all asked the same questions even though they were sitting next to each other and heard all the answers already. Folks do love a cute little baby!
The polls were all electronic, touch screen machines so I got my card and slid it into the slot . I voted straight GOP, wanting very much for the House and Senate to retain a semblance of a two-party system. I was not enthralled about Sen. McCain until he chose Gov. Palin. Then I was all for the GOP ticket.
Next stop was the Payroll office at the Board of Education to get a question or two answered,, and as I was exiting later I looked up at the Chicken Express sign and saw "Now serving fried pickles." I said it before...
fried apple pie
fried pork skins
fried hot dogs
...and I'll say it again, the good folks down south will fry anything.
At the Post Office to buy a stamp for mailing my utility bill, I ran into a wonderful elderly man I'd interviewed two years ago. He is well into his 90s, but still spry. He did not remember me though, but we exchanged pleasantries at the door as I held it open for him. He turned and said, "I have on my Sarah Palin coat today," gesturing to the embroidered mountains and 'Seward Alaska' on the jacket's chest. "That all right with you?" He said with a twinkle in his eye but a challenge in his voice. "I said "Awesome! I'm all for it, nice coat!" He laughed all the way to the stamp window.
I have a bad cough and sinus cold, part and parcel of what you get when you work day in and day out with children, so after voting, the payroll office and the Post Office I went to the Dollar Store and stocked up on the essentials: Mucinex, Robitussin, and NyQuil, the real stuff, not generic. That'll knock the cold on its heels, ha! However, at the checkout, after uneventful scanning of my canned salmon and kitty litter, the clerk passed the Robitussin through the scanner and turned to me, asking "Birthdate?"
"Your birth date, month-day-year, please," pointing to the blinking computer XX-XX-XXXX waiting to be filled in.
"I'm not sure why you are asking me this."
"How old do you have to be to buy it?"
"I am over eighteen."
"I have to put in the exact birth date."
I stared at the screen, mentally deciding whether to forgo the meds and buy them somewhere else or to cave and give the info. The meds were over the counter purchase, not sequestered like cigarettes are. If they wanted to protect minors from buying them, then put them behind the counter like cigarettes are. As I was mulling,
The clerk said "Forget it, I'll plug mine in."
I turned to the lady behind me and asked, "Where will it end?"
She said, loudly, "I'm 60. I'm proud to say how old I am!"
"It just that no matter where you go there are increasingly intrusive requests for personal information."
She said, "Those poor kids buying the cough medicines..."
I could see the cause for personal responsibility and privacy of information was lost, to this crowd at least...my next thought was that soon enough her easy compliance will likely land her in an Obamanation concentration camp/ holding cell or shot at by his Civilian Security Force. I had already gotten cash to pay because of the new rule that all credit card purchases are to be tracked by the IRS...and now this new thing. Oh well...such are the times and I do what I can to resist government intrusion into my wallet, home, and life!
Back home and unpacked, another steaming cuppa in my hand and the windows thrown open to enjoy the fresh air, I relaxed into my antique banker's chair and pondered the one unassailable truth: God is in control. "Praise be to the name of God for ever and ever; wisdom and power are His. He changes times and seasons; He sets up kings and deposes them. He gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to the discerning. He reveals deep and hidden things; He knows what lies in darkness. And light dwells with Him." Daniel 2:20-22
Pray, vote, and in every situation, whether turbulent or peaceful, remember it is a situation where we can lead people to Jesus.
Have a good day!
Saturday, November 01, 2008
Today dawned bright and sunny. At 2:00 I am attending a birthday-anniversary party for a couple in our church. He turns 80 and they are celebrating their 60th wedding anniversary! How cool is that.
When I come home I expect to make some tea with honey, rest a while, then vacuum. I love to vacuum with my new machine. It picks up everything! And the borders of my blue rug get so crisp.
Tonight at 8 I'll watch Huckabee and then maybe a movie. That's my day. How about yours?
PS: don't forget to turn your clock back!