Daily Archives: 6 Jun 2012

Israel’s Unquenchable Quest for Lebensraum

Binyamin Netanyahu, the Israeli prime minister, has announced plans to build hundreds more settler homes on Palestinian land, even after the Israeli parliament rejected a bill to retroactively legalise existing homes.  Netanyahu had called for members of the Knesset to reject the bill, voted down on Wednesday by 69 votes to 22, on the grounds that it could have prompted an international backlash against the settler movement.  But he said later that he would not allow people to “use the legal system to harm the settlement movement,” and announced plans to add 300 new homes to Beit El, near the West Bank city of Ramallah.  “Beit El will be expanded. The 30 families will remain in Beit El, and 300 new families will join them,” Netanyahu said in remarks broadcast on public radio.

Meanwhile, the chirping of crickets from America’s spineless politicians in Washington.  Absolutely despicable.  Absolutely disgusting.  If such a thing were happening anywhere else in the world the US would be up in arms, but since it’s Israel robbing land and planting aliens the government snivellers and toadies of John Hagee and Bibi Netanyahu who occupy DC are emasculated into the coward’s silence.

Shame of you Mr Obama.  Shame on you, Congress.  You all deserve nothing but the contempt of the world and of the American public, and I assure you, you have mine.

One Can Easily Anticipate the Sandusky Verdict

Attorney Mike Faulk asking questions during ju...

One member of the jury selected for former Penn State football coach Jerry Sandusky’s child sex abuse trial is a professor at the university who has read the entire grand jury report that indicted Sandusky.  Also on the panel is a student who arrived wearing a Penn State shirt, just finished his junior year at the school and works in Penn State’s sports facility.

The two-day jury selection process was so deliberate that the first person interviewed — a middle-aged white woman who works at Walmart and has two daughters — was picked to sit on the panel.  The judge and lawyers seated a jury today. The first 16 jurors, which includes four alternates, includes six men and ten women.  Nine of the first 16 panelists have a connection to Penn State.

That many of the jurors have ties to Penn State was almost unavoidable in Centre County, which is dominated by the university.  Judge John Cleland conceded that it might be hard for one particular juror to put aside his emotional ties to the school, but added, “I hope it’s hard for everyone. If it’s easy, we have the wrong jury.”

Hey, how about one of those often used things called a change of venue so that the jury isn’t stacked and the verdict potentially tainted?  Having a jury comprised of Penn State-ers for Sandusky is like having a jury comprised of football players for OJ Simpson.

Luther: On Parenting

English: MARTIN LUTHER IN CHURCH OF MARTIN LUT...

If you are not diligently concerned that your children … learn piety, then it serves you right if your children are disobedient … For God does not give you your children to toy with… As you learn from me, so children and servants should learn from you parents and masters. Remember and help to raise up good people, that you, father, may raise up a devout son, you, mother, a devout daughter, who in turn will raise up their children in piety. — Martin Luther

God Doesn’t Care Whose Team Wins or Loses

Still, the question as to whether or not Christians should pray for their team to win is still alive. Witness today’s essay in Idea.de

Wenn am Wochenende (8. Juni) die Fußball-Europameisterschaft startet, fiebern auch viele Christen mit. Mancher fragt sich dabei, ob er wohl für den Sieg seiner Lieblingsmannschaft beten dürfe. Zwei Christen aus Sport und Kirche geben darauf gegensätzliche Antworten.

The answer is simple- NEIN! Jung is right! Gott ist keine „Wunscherfüllungsmaschine“ Let me say that again- God is NOT a ‘wish fulfillment machine’. He doesn’t care who wins a game. He just doesn’t. He cares about the players and their welfare- but the score- he could not care less.

Kirchenpräsident Jung lehnt es dagegen ab, für einen Sieg zu beten: „Gott ist keine Wunscherfüllungsmaschine und auch kein Mediator gegensätzlicher Gebetsinteressen.“ Das Gebet der Touristen um Sonne und das Bitten der Landwirte um Regen werde von Gott „nicht gegeneinander abgewogen – und die Frommeren erhalten nicht den Zuschlag“. Im Gebet bitte der Christ darum, dass Gottes Wille geschehe, nicht der eigene. Jung: „Wie oft habe ich schon erlebt, dass Gottes Ratschluss klüger war als meiner. Nicht immer verstehe ich das gleich, manchmal erst im Nachhinein – und ehrlich gesagt: auch das nicht immer!“ Er halte es auch beim Beten als Sportler mit dem französischen Mathematiker und Philosophen Blaise Pascal (1623-1662): „Vater im Himmel, ich bitte dich weder um Gesundheit noch um Krankheit, weder um Leben noch um Tod, sondern darum, dass Du über meine Gesundheit und meine Krankheit, über mein Leben und meinen Tod verfügst, zu Deiner Ehre und zu meinem Heil. Du allein weißt, was mir dienlich ist.“

Stop asking God to help your team win.  It’s ridiculous and beyond silly and extremely selfish.

Another Thought Worth Thinking

A time will come when instead of shepherds feeding the sheep, the church will have clowns entertaining the goats. –C.H. Spurgeon

[That day has arrived.  Just turn on your tv and watch Warren and Osteen and Hinn and Hagee, etc]

Quote of the Day

Every kind of ethic is sentimental and finally inhuman whose principle is ‘reverence for life,’ that is, an undifferentiated conception of life based upon itself. — Emil Brunner

Finally Friends, Cats Put to Good Use

Cat as kamikaze…

via G+

The Government of Cyprus Condemns the Biblical Archaeology Society

English: Map of the districts of Cyprus, named...

The Washington Post is reporting today

Cyprus has condemned plans by a group from the U.S.-based Biblical Archaeology Society to travel to the ethnically split island through its breakaway north. Cyprus’ Foreign Ministry said in a statement on its website Wednesday that the group’s planned arrival on June 11 through Turkish-dominated north would breach Cypriot and international law and be “inconsistent with scholarly ethics.” It appealed to the group to amend its itinerary.

Unethical behavior from BAS?  Say it ain’t so…

The Reformed View of the ‘Sacrifice of the Mass’

For Reformed Christians, the sacrifice of Christ was made once, for all, and is in itself completely sufficient and needs no supplementation whatsoever.  Given that fact, the observation of Emil Brunner on the ‘sacrifice of the Mass’ is utterly correct:

The repetition of the Sacrifice of the Mass … betrays some doubt about that which God has done once for all.

For our Catholic friends, there is an undercurrent of doubt concerning the efficacy of the atonement of Christ.  Reformed theologians find that doubt impossible.

Mr President, We All Already Knew That

And it’s exactly why the US is unable to serve as an honest broker of peace in the Middle East.  Our policy is skewed in the direction of Israel to the exclusion of and harm to the Palestinians.

The U.S. administration is more attentive to Israel than it is to the Palestinians, President Barack Obama told a visiting delegation of the U.S. Orthodox Jewish community at the White House, Israeli daily Haaretz reported on Wednesday.
The meeting comprised White House Chief of Staff Jack Lew and leaders of the Orthodox Jewish community, including Dr. Simcha Katz, Rabbi Steven Burg and Nathan Diament of the Orthodox Union.  The Israeli daily cited participants in the meeting, who wanted to remain unnamed, that when Obama was asked what lessons he had learned from events related to the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, he said that there were many possibilities for misunderstanding. There was “only tension because both sides feel pressured to compromise,” he said.

And

The U.S. President asked his guests not to doubt his fidelity to this cause and said that he will “keep trying” as “peace is good for Israel.”

Yes, Mr President.  As long as things work out well for Israel, who cares what happens to anyone else.  Thank you for stating the blindingly obvious concerning American policy.

What Fuels Bad Policy? Greed. Or More Precisely, Your Greed

NPR aired a really interesting piece this morning on the mortgage interest deduction and its continuation even though it makes absolutely no sense, policy-wise, whatsoever.  So what’s keeping it alive?  Corporate greed of course.  But corporate greed isn’t the chief culprit, homeowner greed is.

The mortgage-interest tax deduction benefits the rich more than the poor. It has little effect on home ownership. And it isn’t even really a bargain for homeowners, because it raises home prices.  “The mortgage-interest deduction, from a purely policy perspective … makes no sense,” a policy adviser to a U.S. Senator told me.

And then he explains why.  But here, to me, is the most telling segment:

… the biggest lobby in favor of the deduction is homeowners.  “For middle-class Americans, either doing away or limiting the mortgage interest deduction is going to be a tax increase,” he says.  People who have bought a house assuming they’ll get a break on their taxes each year want that tax break. They might not be able to afford the house they’re in without it.

We like to imagine that corporate America is behind our current policy-lunacy but the fact is, the sad fact is, our real problem is facing us in the mirror each day.  The problem may be the 1%, but the larger problem is the 99%.

Bad Parenting 101

If you aspire to be a bad parent, take this lovely lady’s lead and strap your gas can in the infant seat while you leave your diapered and otherwise naked baby restrained with only a lap belt…

Aurora [Colorado] Police found a gas can strapped into a child safety seat instead of a toddler during a seat belt enforcement campaign last week.  In a photo snapped by a traffic officer, the gas can is seen strapped in the child safety seat in the back seat of a vehicle.

Bad parenting 101.  Next time, how to use your baby as your drug mule.

To the Good Citizens of Wisconsin…

On your failure to remove your Governor- a simple truth, an inconvenient truth: a people get the politicians it deserves.  That is all.