I’ve got a good bit on my mind this morning. I held back from posting anything negative about our nation yesterday (apart from a call to repentance - but that was me as a Christian, not as American; I would feel that way about whatever nation I called home). “Happy Birthday America - you suck!” just seemed inappropriate.
However, our nation does have many, many flaws. I’m not ready to discard her, by any means; but I see, at nearly every turn, her people and her government making the wrong decisions, and continuing her slide towards mediocrity and insecurity, under the guise of improving both. In nearly every issue, the underlying cause appears to me to be the same – an inability to dispassionately, rationally evaluate a situation, policy, etc. on its merits alone. This is displayed on both sides of the political divide, where talking points and comebacks are slung back and forth, and seems to be what passes for civil discourse. It isn’t!
This originated as a Facebook post, but I thought it was more appropriate for the blog; heaven knows it’s had some cobwebs for a while, and hits its tenth anniversary next month. Were I to blog each of these issues individually, though, I’d end up with thousands of words that no one would read, save to search it for keywords so they could post their comebacks in the comments (see above). Does it matter that I can’t succinctly express what’s on my mind? The problems I see aren’t succinct problems with succinct solutions. An exclusively inward focus seems wrong; I should be trying to leave a better nation and world for my children, right?
But, as I look back at those nearly 10-year-old posts, the issues are the same. “Gay Bishops – A Big Deal?” Well, I (regrettably) have been vindicated in my view that this gave license for people to just ignore parts of the Bible with which they disagree; at this point, were a hair’s breadth away from forcing people to behave in ways they feel are contrary to the Bible, because others disagree with parts of It. “The Ten Commandments – A Monumental Controversy” was about a man’s personal decorations in his office, yet the intervening ten years have seen a continuing push to eliminate every vestige of our Christian heritage from the public square. “Abortion – A Bad Idea Whose Time Has Passed” has seen some progress as of late, but the Todd Akin/Wendy Davis dichotomy prove my point about civil discourse; neither side is immune. However, since that post, there is one political party that has decided they should be for it at any time, for any reason, at no cost. I’m no legal expert, but I don’t think that was quite the point of Roe v. Wade, or even Griswold v. Connecticut. How does one rationally argue against such an irrational, yet quite passionately-held, position?
America is not beyond hope. We must change course, though, or we will find ourselves swimming in self-induced mediocrity, while we are crowing over how advanced we are. To get God’s blessing, we must turn to Him; to elevate civil discourse, we must teach reasoning. (Morgan Freeberg had a great (and succinct!) summary of this where he dissects Dennis Prager’s statement that he’d prefer clarity over agreement.)
p.s. The ambiguity in the title of this post is intentional; whichever meaning is appropriate will be up to us going forward.
Over at House of Eratosthenes, Morgan K. Freeberg puts forth a well-reasoned post called “So Does This Make Me a “Birther”?” In it, he examines the larger issue of the precedent set by this particular issue not being resolved for over two (nay, four) years. After the original post, he updated it with noticing how everything we know about the current President, we know because there is a group of people ready to ridicule us if we say we don’t know it. For example:
He is a Christian and not a Muslim. Now, I really don’t care about this one way or the other. But how do I know He’s a Christian? Because He went to Jeremiah Wright’s church, of course! But of course that would mean He’s also an anti-white bigot. But no. He went to Jeremiah Wright’s church for twenty years to listen to all the Christian-ish sermons…but was snoozing through all the America-bashing sermons. Yes to Christianity, no to America-hating, because Obama was coincidentally tuning out at all the right times. Again, how do I “know” this? Because someone’s ready to ridicule me if I believe anything different. I don’t have any other reason to “know” such a thing. None.
Read the whole thing. Whether you’re a birther, you think the birthers are loony, or you’ve just resigned yourself to the fact that it’s not going to be resolved (myself in that latter category), the points made in his post are important. Shouldn’t the CINC have to show the same proof of eligibility as those he commands?
[These opinions] are the opinion equivalent of driving several miles down the highway with your blinker on.
30. Together, we can take on global warming and we can win. Save the planet. Together we can do this.
29. We’ve got to get some more money into the education system, because our children are worth it.
28. Seventy languages in use in a school district is a sign that it is a rich tapestry of diversity, and that is good for everybody.
27. Any statement that qualifies “tax cuts” as an expenditure, such as comparing the “Bush tax cuts” with real spending plans.
26. We’re going to need a bigger stimulus.
25. The trouble with our justice system is that the people who decide the cases don’t have enough empathy.
24. We’ve got to do something to help the unemployed, like taxing the snot out of the businesses that just might hire them.
23. It’s going to take Barack Obama a long, long time to fix all this stuff, and He is trying His best.
22. If women were in charge of the world there wouldn’t be any wars.
21. FOX News tells lots of lies, but I can’t come up with any examples.
20. You know what we really need to change? If a guy has lots of sex he’s a stud, if a woman does the same thing she’s a slut. SO unfair!
19. Everything that needs inventing has been invented. Men, drop out of school, learn to rap and do your crunches.
18. We’ve got to change our policies because our (unnamed) allies in Europe don’t like us.
17. I can’t approve of Barack Obama’s policies. But I still like Him personally, and that’s what really matters.
16. We must all be forced to call gay people “married.” It’s a civil rights issue. For them. Not for anyone else. Just for them.
15. We have to raise the tax rate on the rich, because that makes us all a better people.
14. The Earth is sure to be doomed if I use traditional sandwich baggies. But it’s got a fighting chance if I use these ones that are 25% lighter.
13. Sarah Palin isn’t a real woman; she’s a Republican.
12. I know exactly what my thousand dollar car needs: Three thousand dollar rims.
11. If we drill, we won’t see a single drop of oil for x years. Besides, adorable polar bears, penguins, pristine environment blah blah blah.
10. We should not have attacked Iraq because Iraq didn’t attack us.
9. I wanna watch American Idol!
8. Hooters? Isn’t that a strip bar or something?
7. The second amendment is out of date because all them founders couldn’t have envisioned nukular weapons and what-not
6. Those illegal aliens are just trying to make a better life for their kids so we should coddle them all and make them citizens.
5. Vote for Obama! Hope! Change!
4. If your kid doesn’t feel like paying attention it’s a learning disability. Medicate him.
3. No one’s going to be safe until we get rid of all these guns we have lying around.
2. Culottes and clamdiggers. That’s what hip fashionable hot looking women should wear this summer. Who wants to see a gorgeous woman’s bare thigh anyway.
1. Palin quit because of a scandal. Yup. After all that digging, months and months, the entire Fourth Estate…they left one hidden. Boy, do they feel foolish.
Morgan Freeberg over at House of Eratosthenes has put up an allegory as his latest “Memo for File” (82nd, for those of you keeping score at home), and it’s great. I can’t really think of a good way to tease it, but it’s excellent - go read it.
And, I saw this bumper sticker outside a building earlier today, and the more I thought about it, the more I chuckled.
With less than two weeks to Election Day, here’s a mini “Plagiarism Is the Sincerest Form of Flattery” post.
First up is Neal Boortz. He writes an open letter to the undecided voter. It’s a long letter - you’ll probably need 10-15 minutes to read it all. But, I found it very interesting - one of the things I’ve enjoyed this political season is seeing how people interpret what’s going on. You can see where they’ve been, and how they see the issues based on their experience.
Next is an image blatantly swiped from Morgan Freeberg. Sums up poor Joe the Plumber’s treatment pretty well, I think…
Joe the Plumber does not make 250,000 dollars a year. He doesn’t even make close to that.
He just wants to.
So, Joe is opposed to taxing people who make more than $250k because he wants to be one of those people in the future. Could it be that people are engaging their brains, instead of mindlessly buying into the class warfare schtick of the left?
Neal Boortz provides validation today for those of us who claim that a higher minimum wage leads to lower employment. It turns out that July turned out to be a really bad month for teenage employment - the typical person seeking minimum-wage employment.
The Godfather points out an AP release in which, all of a sudden, they determine that “trickle-down economics” actually exists! When “rich” people don’t get as much money, they don’t give as much, or they don’t hire as much.
There’s something about liberals. Sure, they believe pretty much the opposite of everything I do, but the way they go about things really puzzles me, especially the public ones that get a lot of press. Morgan K. Freeberg over at House of Eratosthenes has once again proved why he was one of the first ever “Daily Reads” I put out here. He’s the sort of person who, once an idea takes hold, will noodle it out until he gets it. Today, he’s analyzed the phenomenon where something we can do is declared impossible (ex. win in Iraq), while something we can’t do is declared as their goal (ex. eliminate poverty - see Matthew 26:11; the poor aren’t going anywhere).
I’d been trying to come up with a good way to illustrate the projection the liberals show (assuming that their latent feelings are the up-front feelings of their political opposites). In fact, there is a great example in all of the hype surrounding Barack Obama’s clinching of the Democrat nomination for President. It’s only historic to people who focus on race - and those are the same people telling us that we shouldn’t be focusing on race. The most historic thing about Barack Obama’s nomination is that he’s the first person in history to defeat the Clinton war machine (and, to give him his due, that is a significant accomplishment).
Morgan also covers the over-compensation angle - you know, the stereotypical guy who buys a muscle car to substitute for lack of anatomical size. I forget where I heard it, but there’s a saying that “if you have to tell someone you’re generous, you probably aren’t.” Back to Jesus talking about the poor, He said that our left hand should not know what our right hand is doing. (Matthew 6:2-3)
Go check out his post - he thoroughly dissects and analyzes this phenomenon.
Another busy time, another installment of “Plagiarism Is the Sincerest Form of Flattery”. See, when we re-blog here, we’re honest and up-front. :)
First up is an article about the cost of illegal immigration for Los Angeles County for one month, from radio talk show host and author Neal Boortz. The numbers are staggering.
Next up, a link to a pundit I never thought I’d link to, except as a set up to refute. However, Susan Estrich and I agree on this issue, which she details in “A Weak Moment for Women in Banning Larry Summers”. (I don’t agree that what he originally said was wrong - but the rest of it is spot-on.)
Via Morgan Freeberg, we have reports that “A Quiet Triumph May Be Brewing”. Could it be that we’ve come up with a way to get most remaining al-Qaeda in the same place, then send them to their 72 virgins (or raisins, depending on the translation)?
And finally, we wrap up with some humor. Rachel Lucas learned to make thought and speech bubbles in PhotoShop, and produced a masterpiece she calls “Three Men and a Hillary”. (Language warning in effect for the comments on that post…)