a friend of a friend

Have you ever thought about all the stories you hear that start with "a friend of a friend" or "my friend's friend"?
(i'm not just talking about the fact that the stories that follow are probably urban legends either...)

**But seriously, have you ever noticed that our friends' friends have way more crazy, fun, and interesting lives than our friends themselves? and certainly much more interesting lives than we do.

maybe the further we move out in the 6 degrees of separation the more crazy these people get?!  So, if we ever hear stories about "a friend of a friend of a friend of a friend" - then that is going to be one freaking crazy story!


(This was originally posted to renown in June, 2010.)

Obamacare Ruling Has Just Woken a Sleeping Giant

It's name is the Tea Party. Friends, do you know what caused the Tea Party? It was Obamacare. The Tea Party was kind of in a lull until yesterday's ruling by the Supreme Court. Now, friends, you've just made us angry. And we get organized when we're angry.

Mitt Romney's biggest problem...an excitement gap...just went bye bye. Because now conservatives are necessarily bent on getting rid of Obamacare at the ballot box. We always were, friends...it's just we were hoping the Supreme Court would stand up for liberty. They didn't. Well, Chief Justice Roberts didn't. (Still mad at you, buddy.) As conservatives, we believe in personal responsibility, and not the forced kind. If you want to purchase health insurance, fine. If you choose not to, that's fine too, but don't ask us to pay for it with our tax dollars. (We may be willing to pay for it in our churches and charities, just not through taxes.)

The Tea Party just woke up, friends. Mitt Romney just got huge boost. Because the Tea Party is once again awake and by the way, we're still mad as hell. We are not going to take this ruling lying down. If the Supreme Court is going to refuse to uphold the Constitution, then we're going to do it at the ballot box.

My fellow Tea Party patriots, get ready, because Election 2010: The Sequel is in post-production. Debuts on November 6, 2012. Game on.

it just enables

"Money enables what's in a person's heart."
- Matt Krol

i heard this quote 4 or 5 years ago and have always found that it is TRUE.

a lot of people say stuff like "when i have more money, then i'll _______ "
fill in the blank with whatever you want.

basically they're saying they will live differently when they have money. things will be different then and money will be the game changer.

but i say that your heart is the indicator. money is just the enabler.

so if people say - "when i have money, then i'll be generous." they only need to ask 1 question = am i generous now?
because money will simply enable what's already in your heart.
if you live for yourself now... if you're greedy... spend all your money on yourself now... 
then, when you have more money you will just do more of the same.

if you are generous now... giving your money away... blessing others... not spending it all on yourself...
then, when you have more money you will just do more of the same.

if you spend your money on YOU now, but you say you will be generous when you have more money...

no you won't.

because having more money won't make you generous.

money just enables what's already in your heart.

Reactions to the SCOTUS Obamacare Decision

Today's post on the Supreme Court's upholding of Obamacare is simply my thoughts. I may post a more in-depth analysis later on. For now, let's all just mourn.

Today's blog is a little late, as I wanted to wait for the decision to be announced.  Then it came across the newswire first saying the Supreme Court had struck down the individual mandate. I breathed a sigh of relief...at least THAT's gone, I thought. Then it turned out that report was wrong, and this blogger's heart sank. All I could think of was a quote from the apocryphal Star Wars - Revenge of the Sith: "So this is how liberty dies, with thunderous applause."

Ultimately, the Supreme Court has failed to uphold the Constitution of the United States. To be specific, Chief Justice John Roberts failed to uphold the Constitution. As sad as I was when I heard of the Supreme Court's decision to uphold forcing Americans to purchase a product (by calling it a tax and not a mandate), I was just as sad when I heard who the deciding vote was in this decision.  I figured it was probably the wishy-washy Anthony Kennedy. It wasn't. It was the Chief Justice.

Friends, I fully expected Justices Sonia Sotomayor, Stephen Breyer, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Elena Kagan to uphold the law. (Two Clinton appointees and two Obama appointees. Fine.) I also expected Justices  Samuel Alito, Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas to stand for the Constitution, which they did. I'm glad Justice Kennedy found the Constitution and read the darn thing before ruling on Obamacare.

Yet it was Chief Justice Roberts, who I believed to be a strong Constitutionalist, went and upheld the law. By calling the mandate what it ALWAYS was: a tax. Friends, this law never would have passed if it was presented to the nation by it's true nature: A massive tax increase. Very few people in Congress would have signed on for a bill that was such a massive tax increase. That's why Barack Obama said in 2009, and I quote:

For us to say that you’ve got to take a responsibility to get health insurance is absolutely not a tax increase. - Barack Obama, 2009 - Obama Interview with George Stephanopolus, ABC News

Friends, if you go read that link, which I won't quote, even George "Mister" Snuffleupagus didn't believe President Obama when he said it wasn't a tax. Neither did Chief Justice Roberts, apparently.

This fight isn't over, friends. We can absolutely still get rid of this law. We have one chance: Fire President Obama on November 6, 2012. We'll talk about that more in days to come. In the meantime, this is just a plain sad day for America, for the Constitution, and for freedom.

Balancing Faith and the Constitution

Well, friends, it's been a while since I've gotten all philosophical, but I believe it's time to do just that. I debate with a few friends from my high school days regularly (often over my blogs) and one topic that comes up an awful lot is whether or not it is acceptable to use one's faith as a grounds for political decision making. The argument from one of them is basically that I can believe what I want but I should suspend my faith in my political opinions.

Honestly, friends, this is absolutely impossible. My faith defines me more than anything else in my life...more than my career, more than conservatism, more than my family. My identity, first and foremost, is that of a person purchased by the blood of Jesus Christ and saved by the grace of God. Due to this, the Bible is the primary document that sets my life in order.

There is however are two other documents that I hold only slightly below the Bible in terms of my ideas and ideals of what is right and wrong. The first document is the United States Constitution. The second is the Declaration of Independence. To give an analogy, if I said I hold the Bible in esteem of 1000 feet in the air, I'd say I hold the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence about 995 feet in the air in esteem. There is a difference, but I hold both very, very highly. As a matter of fact, I believe these two documents as they exist today (including the 27 ratified Amendments) best demonstrate in a modern sense God's perfect governmental style (now I said BEST not PERFECTLY, mind you) over all other forms of government.

So where is the balance? There are issues I am willing to go to the wall on. I also believe those issues are in line with both the Bible and the Constitution/Declaration of Independence tandem. One such issue is abortion.  As Americans we are endowed by our Creator with certain unalienable rights (for those of you from Palm Beach County, FL, that means those rights cannot be taken away, period) amongst which are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness. I have asserted on more than one occasion that these three are a hierarchy, specifically, my right to pursue happiness ends at your liberty (I cannot enslave you as I pursue my own happiness) and my liberty ends at your life (I can do what I want, provided I do take your life.)

Since nobody can say with any level of certainty when human life begins (except for it's after conception...otherwise you show me a sperm cell or egg cell that grew into a person on it's own), it is best to error on the side of caution and not destroy a potential human life.

There are other issues, however, I must find compromise on in the political arena. I believe that all people have the right to equal protection under the laws of our nation. This is why while I will continue to insist that the word "marriage" specifically denotes one man and one woman, I cannot insist that other combinations of two adult humans cannot petition the government to recognize their union with legal privileges similar to those of the marriage union. I can even see considering the legal term for all unions "Civil Union" on the legal license, reserving the title "marriage" for those unions performed in church. (Yes, there will always be people who use the term "marriage" colloquially, but there's not much I can do about that.)
Why do I agree to this compromise? Simple. I respect our nation's founding documents. I respect the fact that the First Amendment not only gives me freedom of religion but also gives others the same right. It further gives me the right to share my faith with others and discuss our differences and yes, attempt to convince them that I am right (they have the same right).

I know I'll likely receive grief both from my fellow Christians and from those who disagree with me.  But ultimately I believe this is the most equitable solution. There are other issues where the same type of pragmatism can be employed. (I've continued to argume to teach some form of Intelligent Design, not Creationism, alongside Evolution. Specifically focusing on complexity and signs of a designer without naming that designer.) 

There is room for a middle ground without compromising one's faith. Because ultimately, if one respects the Constitution, they can find the balance between that and faith. I recognize it is akin to standing in the middle of a teeter-totter and balancing, sometimes with a person on each end who is not assisting in any way but just adding weight. However, it is reasonably possible to balance faith and the Constitution while being true to both and compromising neither.

how well can you do this?

“Our maturity will be judged by how well we are able to agree to disagree and yet continue to love one another and to cherish one another and seek the greater good of the other.”
- Desmond Tutu 
 
boom.
 
Bishop Tutu always has a way of helping us get back to reality. back to the place we need to be.
 
so, how well do you do this?
 
how well can you continue to LOVE and cherish & seek good for the person who you drastically disagree with?
 
because what i see most is people not being able to handle it when other people disagree with them. if someone has a different ideology or different belief about something peeps get all bent out of shape. they can't continue to love that person and want good for them.
 
what i see is that people are judged by how much they can agree with the one doing the judging.
 
what i see is people's value being based on how little they disagree with your viewpoint.
 
it's crazy to me that so many people can seem to hate people because of their disagreements.
 
i think the Bishop is right. our maturity is judged by this. and i don't think most of us are scoring too high on the maturity ranking.  

Reactions to the AZ Immigration Law Ruling

A big week at the Supreme Court kicked off yesterday with part of Arizona's controversial Immigration Law was upheld while other parts were struck down.

In a nutshell, the state of Arizona may continue to inquire about the legality of an immigrant's status and they may continue to ask for documentation if they suspect a person may not be legally in this country. However, they must then flag Federal immigration officers to handle further prosecution of any violation of Federal immigration law.

On paper and as a card-carrying Federalist, I agree with this decision, because the Federal government is in charge of enforcing immigration. It is a necessity that the the Federal government do this if we are going to be one nation of fifty states...otherwise we would have to have ID checks for all people when crossing state lines, as we do on the U.S./Canadian border. Since we thankfully have the right to move from state to state at will without such provisions, we must therefore leave immigration enforcement in the hands of the Federal government.

Unfortunately, the very reason that Arizona passed this law in the first place was because the Federal government was doing an absolutely lousy job of enforcing the borders. It was something of a "fine, you don't want to protect our borders, WE'LL do it."

So once again we're back at asking the Federal government to do something that's ACTUALLY THEIR JOB. (Sigh.) I mean the Federal government has become increasingly effective at doing things that aren't their job, like providing health care (and by becoming "effective" I mean they're doing it...not stating how well they are doing it) but when it comes to protecting our borders, they are horrible at it. That's why Arizona even passed this law: The Obama Administration refuses to do the job of enforcing the borders!

Now you know the Left is going to be up in arms because they still somehow think that asking people for ID is somehow infringing on rights. Let me give a brief dramatic representation of the Liberal mentality on this:

Liberal: Hello I'd like to buy this bottle of wine...
Cashier: Do you have ID?
Liberal: Here you go.
----


TSA: And where are you flying?
Liberal: Florida.
TSA: May I see your ID, please?
Liberal: Here you go.
----


Mountie: And how long will you be visiting Canada?
Liberal: Until tomorrow.
Mountie: And what is your business in Canada?
Liberal: Shopping and going to see a Blue Jays game.
Mountie: May I see your ID, please?
Liberal: Sure.


----


Police officer: Do you know how fast you were going?
Liberal: Uhhh....
Police officer: License and registration, please.
Liberal: Here you go, officer.
Police Officer: Are you an immigrant, sir?
Liberal: Yes.
Police Officer: May I see your immigration papers?
Liberal: DON'T YOU OPPRESS ME!

The purpose of our little demonstration is this: We are asked to show our ID regularly. It's simply part of life. When people wax intellectual about "Nazi Germany" or whatever they are ignoring the realities of life. Especially because, thanks to the Supreme Court ruling, people are not forced to carry papers. (So in other words, it's just like when you are pulled over for a traffic violation and are given 24 hours to produce a driver's license.)

Friends, the Liberal panic continues and it's again unnecessary. Unfortunately, the realities of life often get in the way of Liberal panic. Ultimately, the AZ Immigration law's most important provision lives. And that's all that really matters.

only 49% save for retirement

there's a new survey out saying that only 49% of Americans are saving anything for retirement.

wow.

so what are the rest of you doing? the other 51%?
what could you possibly be doing with that money?

and a better question - what are you going to do when you get old?
what are you going to do when you retire?

ooooooohh... you're NOT gonna retire. i gotcha.
you're just gonna keep working.

well that's cool. because i don't really believe in retirement either. i plan to keep working my whole live long life too. so, i'll be right there with you.

but 1 more question - wouldn't it be nice to not HAVE to work for money when you're old. like, wouldn't it be nice to just work for FUN for FREE - whatever you wanna do.
but not have to work a crappy job just to buy food and live indoors?

i'm all for not retiring - yeah, let's use years 65 til whenever to do something that matters instead of move to the beach and collect seashells and play golf or tennis or bingo...

but it would be cool to not need a paycheck at that age just to put gas in your car.

ooooooohh... you're gonna have rich successful kids & they're gonna take care of you when you're old.

i hate to break it to you & i'm def not trying to be mean... but if you're one of the 51% not saving for retirement...
your kids probably won't either. & it's probably good chances they won't be rich & successful and be able to be your retirement when you're old.

just sayin.

so, to the 51%... just take 15% of your next paycheck and put it into a Roth IRA or something like that. and when the next paycheck comes... do that again. and do the same thing the next time.
you won't even notice the 15% is missing. just do it.

and when you're 65 you can have fun giving away millions of dollars + have tons more money to live on and do whatever you love.

just sayin.

leave the 51% and join the 49%.

It's Always the Cover-Up, Not the Actual Crime, Mr. President

Unless you've been living under a rock, you've heard that that Attorney General Eric Holder was held in contempt of Congress last week for failing to provide documentation on Operation Fast and Furious.  The claim from the White House is "national security."

The question must be asked of the White House is this: What national security concerns?  We are talking about Mexico, right? You know that nation to our south who's rear end we could kick about as fast as we won the Gulf War in 1991? So apparently there's some kind of national security concern with MEXICO? While we're at it, let's be afraid of Canada and maybe Malta. 

Friends, I'm going to go on record to say this thing stinks of a cover-up. While I've avoided commenting on this until now, it's been in the back of my mind that this may well have been an intentional operation organized by the Obama Administration to make a move against our 2nd Amendment rights. Or maybe the Obama Administration knew nothing to plan this operation but some chronie of the President's did it and now he's covering their butt for them. Let's even assume the latter is more likely.

Time for a history lesson. Most people know the Watergate Scandal was what caused President Richard M. Nixon to resign in disgrace. What most people do not know is that President Nixon did not have anything to do with the actual break-in at the Watergate office complex. His campaign did that without his knowledge. What he did do was cover up for his associates in his re-election campaign.

So even if President Obama had absolutely zero knowledge of Fast and Furious, the cover-up is a problem.  The type of problem that ended a presidency in 1974. Now in Obama's case, there wouldn't be time for him to be forced to resign or impeached, because I believe that such a scandal if it came to light before November would seal is defeat. And even if it didn't, I remain confident that Obama will lose his job in November anyway just based on failure to govern with any success.

Friends, I watch this story with great interest, as I know many of you are. The Drive-By Media has tried very hard to avoid...but it's becoming apparent that the conservative branch the media is making sure it doesn't fly. I hope President Obama gathers what he must from history: It wasn't the scandal that brought down Nixon. If Nixon had let G. Gordin Libby and the Committee to Re-Elect the President suffer the consequences of their illegal actions, Nixon would have stayed in office and we likely would never have seen Gerald Ford as President.

To go to a more modern story, Bill Clinton would not have been impeached if all he had done was have an affair. What brought him down was committing perjury in the civil trial with Paula Jones and in Congress. That was what he was impeached for, not for having an affair. Once again, it was the attempt to cover up the crime, not the crime itself, that impeached Clinton.

I close with this: Mr. President, it's never the scandal, but the cover-up that brings down Presidents. Learn from history, and comply with Congress. Especially if you're innocent.

my 1st blog from 30,000 feet

i've never thought to write a blog on a plane.
actually, i don't really know how long they've even made WiFi available on airplanes.

but here's my 1st one.
(& i would guess the 1st of many.)

Crystal & i are flying to New York WITH Keira. She's done awesome so far (knock on wood).

speaking of writing in the air... i remember writing for a long time in my journal in the airport on my 1st trip to Africa.

i was about 19 and had been in London for a few days hanging out with a friend. he had just dropped me at the HUGE London airport and i was flying to Jo-burg, South Africa where a guy i had met once was going to pick me up and take me to Botswana where i would spend the next few months.

i can remember sitting in that huge airport in London waiting to go to Africa "all by myself" for a really long time.

i can remember sitting there and watching all the people go by & not knowing anyone.

i remember sitting there thinking about going to spend the the next few months of my life really far away from home with no one that i knew.

airports can be lonely places.

that moment for me seemed like it would be a lonely moment.

but i didn't feel lonely. i didn't feel alone.

i wasn't alone.

there was a Presence with me.
real and almost tangible.

i can still remember it. i wrote to God in my journal for hours sitting there in London waiting for my flight.

i can still remember the song playing on my "discman" (remember those?) - Shane & Shane's Be Near.

i remember thinking that if i didn't feel alone in a moment like that... in fact, since i felt the opposite of alone (completely KNOWN and in the presence of Someone who knew me well)... then i probably shouldn't need to feel alone anywhere ever.

i need to go back and find that particular journal in my stack of journals. i need to find that entry. maybe i'll post some of it.

anyway, ever since that day, airports have been kind of like a spiritual place for me.
in the middle of all the hustle & bustle... the rushing, stressed out people... all the frustrated people...
it's still a peaceful place for me.

for some reason (because of that day in the London airport) i have a heightened sense of the Presence of God in airports. & it causes me to slow down and be aware of it.

it's almost like an airport is a thin place for me.

anyway, just a thought for my 1st blog post from 30,000 feet.

brave

brave heart trans(plant (plant)ers wart hog tied stick ball & chain saw IV all american made service plan(ters wart remover (ver)ve pipe cleaner (nir)vana smells like teen spirit guide post hole digg(ers (irs)kine California girls they're undenia(ble (bull) fighter pilot light ning show boat shoes off the bed bugs bite sleep tight jea(ns) (ns ns ns ns) "what is love?", court(ney (knee) jerk reac(tion (shun)ned from home of the brave


can you dig it?

WaPo is Telegraphing Obama's Potential Defeat

"Due to the evolution of politics and media, we may never see a two-term President again."
- Mark McKinnon, Washington Post

That's what the Washington Post is claiming in a recent article entitled "Can any president succeed in today’s political world?" Translation: Wahahaha boo hoo! It's just not fair! Poor Obama can't get anything done! (Pay no attention to the 2 years where Obama had not only had Democrat controll of the House and Senate through 2011, but that up until Scott Brown took office in February 2010, they had a philibuster-proof majority in the Senate.)

Here's what's really happening, friends: The Drive-By Media has begun to read the writing on the wall. Obama does not have a record to run on...at least not a positive one. He has one accomplishment that people approve of, and that is the killing of Osama Bin Laden. His biggest legislative accomplishment remains unpopular, and that's Obamacare. The Stimulus did not work, unless you buy into the baloney rhetoric that "it would've been much worse if we didn't act!" and we still haven't seen Obama's 2009 promise that "unemployment won't go above 8% if we pass the stimulus" come to fruition yet. (Weekly unemployment has not fallen below 8% since it went above 8% shortly after the ill-fated promise).

Now the Republican Party has a nominee. Oh, and by the way, while Mitt Romney may be as exciting as a children's book to a Rhodes Scholar, but he also has precisely the right experience for the problem at hand. We need to correct our economy...and we've got a guy who has major business experience, running major companies and correcting problems and turning money losing companies into profitable companies.

Not to mention the fact that Romney's prescribing solutions that have worked time and again, whether under President Warren Harding in 1921, or President Kennedy in the 60s, or under President Reagan in the 80s, or under President Clinton in the 90s (who, by the way friends, only saw the economic boom he saw by embracing conservative principles, as I have explained before).

Meanwhile, Obama has nothing but the same bad ideas that have never worked before, whether it was under Johnson in the late 60s or Carter in the 70s.  Unlike last time around, Obama has this pesky record. Turns out Presidents can't vote present...poor poor Obama.

So now the Drive-By Media has started with it's pre-emptive excuses. It's not Obama's fault, no President could get re-elected in such a partisan climate (I guess they don't remember what George W. Bush had to deal with for four years, including the filibustering of judges by Democrats). I also don't recall the Drive-By Media being so sad for poor President Bush. Actually I remember them piling on instead.

Why the excuses? Because the Drive-By Media sees what I've been telling you: Obama is not going to be re-elected, barring a miracle. The Drive-By Media can't exclusively direct the conversation like they used to be able to do before talk radio, the internet, and Fox News.  They can't carry Obama over the finish line. And Obama doesn't look likely to get himself across the finishline. So the Drive-By Media has to make excuses.

my wife is the awesomest!

no, it's not really that kind of post.

i mean, i've known for a long time that my wife is the awesomest. she is amazing!

but this week she has pulled out all the stops.

she has outdone herself.

just when i thought she couldn't amaze me anymore...
she went and did it again.

all week long we've been at Big Stuf in Daytona Beach. it's been awesome. there are 30 of us from Student Impact at Ridge Church. crazy fun all week long + God is doing some really awesome stuff.

but my wife has been the CHEF. she has prepared 3 meals a day for 30 people! most of whom are teenagers who LIKE to eat. and it has been amazing. seriously, REALLY good food. so much so that other churches are complaining about the meal plan they paid for. (would have cost our kids an extra $200 per person.)


oh, and did i mention my wife has done ALL this cooking/prepping meals IN A TINY LITTLE HOTEL ROOM.

and that tiny little hotel room also served as the buffet line.


oh... and if that wasn't enough - all of this WITH AN 8 MONTH OLD BABY IN HER ARMS!

& pretty much no help.


WOW.
i mean, i knew my wife was awesome. but this proves once again that she's the awesomest.


i guess there's some other peeps who think so too... (just a BIG card all the students made & signed)


somehow, it's stuff like this that make her look even more beautiful to me.
because she's helping these students have an awesome experience this week. and hopefully a week that changes their lives forever.

thanks, Crystal.
"you da you da best..."

Bloomberg Poll that Boosts Obama Goes Against All Other Polls

Perhaps you've seen this poll from Bloomberg that was released recently, claiming that President Obama is leading Mitt Romney...with likely voters, mind you...by 13%. Wow really, Bloomberg?

Bloomberg Poll: Obama 53%, Romney 40% (Likely Voters, supposedly) - Obama +13%

So Obama is headed for a landslide victory? I'm sure someone else will hold THAT up, right, Bloomberg?
Let's see what other polls released within one week of Bloomberg's say:

Rassmussen Reports: Romney 47%, Obama 45% (Likely Voters) - Romney +2

Gallup: Romney 46%, Obama 45% (Registered Voters) - Romney +1

Reuters: Obama 45%, Romney 44% (Registered Voters) - Obama +1

Monmouth University: Obama 47%, Romney 46% (Likely Voters) - Obama +1 *

Tipp Online: Obama 48%, Romney 44% (Registered Voters) - Obama +4 *

Fox News: Obama 43%, Romney 43% (Registered Voters) - Tie *

CNN/Opinion Research: Obama 49%, Romney 46% (Registered Voters) - Obama +3 *

* Denotes poll that is 2 or more weeks old


So let's see, the other four polls from the last week (top three polls) give an average of Romney 45.6% to Obama 45%. These threee polls range from Romney leading by 2% to Obama leading by 1%. All four are within the margin for error. When you add in the bottom 4 polls (which date as early as the first week in June) we get an average of Obama 46%, Romney 45%. Compare that to Bloomberg's ridiculous claim that Obama is winning by 13%!

How in Heaven's name is Bloomberg arriving at this conclusion? One might guess that there was some sample stacking...and yes, there was some of that.  Based on party identification (not party registration by the way) Democrats were oversampled 6% over Republicans in direct identification (sample was 32% either straight Republican or lean Republican while 38% either identified with the Democrat Party or leaned that way), and had an additional 1% more of the Democrat leaners over Republican leaners. There were also another 26% who claim they were "true independents."(Those of you who read this regularly know that I generally disregard people who trumpet their independence to the world because 95% of these people find a way to land with a leg on each side of the political fence.)

Let's set aside what I've said over and over and over again about polling samples like this, specifically noting that 40% of Americans consider themselves conservative, which means logically that at least 40% of Americans will more closely identify with the GOP (or as Bloomberg wants you to believe, 8% of conservatives don't more closely identify with the GOP) .  You also have to believe that in addition to the 21% of Americans who consider themselves liberal, another 17% of the 35% who call themselves moderate swung to the Democrat party while the rest were "true independents." (Translation, basically no moderates are Republicans).

Let's ignore all that: Why is Bloomberg's poll so far off the mark from EVERYBODY ELSE? This includes liberal polsters like Reuters/Ipsos, Tipp Online and CNN.  Even the most generous poll for the President is the CNN/Opinion Research Poll where Obama is leading Romney 49% to 46% (and that poll was published on June 1st...nearly three weeks ago) has Obama doing 4% worse than the Bloomberg poll and Romney doing 6% better than the Bloomberg poll. That's a full 10% swing in Obama's favor!

Taking the average of the other polls published in the last week or so, (remember the four poll average was Romney 45.75% to Obama 45.5%) we see a swing of +7.5% for Obama and -4.75% for Romney, meaning a swing of 12.25% aggregate in Obama's favor!

Friends, even if this poll by Bloomberg wasn't intentionally cooked (unlikely considering the fact that somehow, despite all history, moving from registered voters to likely voters the Democrat GAINS GROUND and significantly), it should be thrown out simply based upon how ridiculously out of line it is with EVERY OTHER POLL (save for the polls I've already called out for and demonstrated that they are using skewed samples).

If nothing else, friends, ignore this poll. It's findings are so far out of line with all others that there was clearly something wrong with it. And that's the bottom line, because the numbers say so.

thirsty? (repost)

(i originally wrote and posted this to renown on June 30, 2010.)

These 2 people live in Bulgeta, Ethiopia. i don't know their names. They are getting water to drink. Every single person in the town drinks the water from this pond.

I showed this picture to my wife and she had no idea it was even water. She said she thought the people were playing in a sand box. that made me want to cry.
NO ONE SHOULD HAVE TO DRINK THIS WATER!

There is no reason anyone in our world should still be dying from unclean water... but several died from unclean water since you've been reading this. that's messed up.

Thankfully some other people thought it was messed up too. They gave to Charity:Water (an awesome org. that i love) and they built a clean water well in Bulgeta! These 2 people never have to visit this pond again. People from this town won't die from unclean water anymore.
*Because some people were generous. They thought the future for this town should be different so they did something about it.

you can read more about this town and water project HERE and there are even links that will take you to the google earth coordinates to see these villages who have been helped in Ethiopia!

Would you be willing to be generous so that an entire town would have clean water instead of drinking from that "sand box"?

Letter Bag: Voter ID Realities, Part II

Well, you just knew I couldn't give liberals so many facts and figures against their favorite argument on Voter ID laws without getting a pointless response.  So here's what we got, anonymously, earlier this week:

You ignorant southern hick! Do you have any idea how difficult it is to get a photo ID? Do you realize how many blacks and hispanics who can't afford proper ID you are leaving in the dirt with these laws?!

Dear Bam-Bam:

OK, first of all, I'm from NEW YORK. Not the South. I talk about it all the time. Get a map.

Secondly, Bam-Bam, do YOU have any idea how many people don't have ID?  Turns out I did have that little detail in my post:

"LESS THAN 1% OF ELIGIBLE VOTERS HAVE NO PHOTO ID!"

Oh, and to that less than 1% with no photo ID, I'd say voting is the least of their problems. Because, unless they are a subsistence farmer living on a piece of land that they own due to squaters rights, they are unable to find a place to LIVE. You need photo identification to rent or buy a home.

Also, these "poor people left in the dirt" as you so astutely put it, are also left in the dirt from buying cough syrup, alcohol, allergy pills, tobbaco, lottery tickets, register for school, cash a check, open a bank account, apply for government benefits, get on an airplane, or enter a government building. So once again, Bam-Bam, these people have far greater problems than not being able to vote.

Do I have any idea how difficult it is to get a photo ID? Yes. I have one. When I obtained my first photo ID (my learner's permit at 16 years old) I needed I believe it was my social security card and birth certificate. Really wasn't that hard to get. By the way, to get a non-driver ID card, it costs about ten bucks in my state. Yeah. Ten bucks. Considering the laundry list of things one cannot do without that photo ID (see above), Bam-Bam, it seems like something basically all adults need to do anyway.

So actually, not that hard to get set up now is it, Bam-Bam? My suggestion is this. Take a break from saying one word over and over, and spend five minutes researching your point before making it. Ask Pebbles for help. She seems smart.

Once Mitt Connects, Obama is Done

Now that Mitt Romney is the official Republican nominee we are getting some level of accurate polling data in this November's Presidential matchup. So far, it's been pretty close. Yet the writing is also on the wall that suggests that Obama's numbers will be dropping off after Mitt Romney becomes less unknown to the voting populace.

Ironically enough, the Drive-By Media is claiming that it's Mitt who is out of touch with most Americans. Ironic, since their beloved President has never had a real job in his life and was a professor, then a community organizer, and then he became a professional politician. Apparently THAT is the typical career path of the average American.

Here's a nice dose of reality for those of us who want to see America fire Obama in 2012: He's only doing as well as he is because Romney is still an unknown quantity to many Americans. A lot of people still believe that Mitt is basically C. Montgomery Burns. But here's the thing: People trust their own eyes before they trust the Drive-By Media stories. I remember when the first Republican Primary debate happened last year. I heard so many people who were so very shocked that Michelle Bachmann wasn't a fire-breathing dragon.

Mitt's going to do the same thing. He's going to rationally explain what Bain Capital does, and explain the utter stupidity of the Obama line that "Bain didn't exist to create jobs." Well no duh, Mr. President. As I stated before, that's not why businesses form. Unfortunately, our President is a man who simply does not understand how business works.

Friends, President Obama has nothing positive to run on, save for making an increidbly obvious decision to go get Osama Bin Laden. I've said it over and over. His biggest domestic achievement is Obamacare, remains tremendously unpopular, so much so that the law is now ADVERTISING how great it is as if it was a public service announcement!

Let's also remember that there are multiple major scandals on this administration's back, like Fast and Furious where Attorney General Eric Holder is now in contempt of Congress. Or how about the Green Energy subsidies that have gone belly up...after investing back in major Obama donors.

For that matter, tell me the last time Obama was above 50% approval for a significant period of time? Or even having higher approval than disapproval for more than a few days?

Remember when Obama was going to spend $1 Billion on this campaign? His fundraising is down! As a matter of fact, Mitt Romney is beating Obama in fundraising!

Friends, the only reason Obama is hanging on by a thread is that Mitt Romney remains unknown. That is not going to last, friends. The Drive-By Media is trying so hard to protect Obama. It's not working, because there are other outlets to compete with the Drive-Bys, friends (outlets with more consumers).

Bottom line: As soon as Mitt Romney connects with voters, President Obama's job is lost.

Real Facts on Voter ID Laws

To start, I want to apologize for the formatting issues with this post. I couldn't get formatting to work properly. Thank you for bearing with me.
Ok, I know I've discussed this before. But since the Drive-By Media has started up it's lines about the "Republicans disenfranchising minorities" I guess it's time to bring a nice big heaping plate of reality to people AGAIN on voter ID.

Backstory: This all started when a friend of mine posted this link from Rolling Stone entitled, and I quote "The GOP War on Voting."  First and foremost, Rolling Stone, I genuinely do not give a flying rip about your political opinions. Stick to music news. If you want to occasionaly do a story about what's going on in the business office of Gibson or Fender, fine. Otherwise, and please listen to me...STAY OUT OF POLITICS!  Secondly, if you're the type of person who gets your political news from Rolling Stone, please, I'm begging you, do America a favor and just don't vote...because clearly you're not informed enough to affect  other people's lives.  (I'm guessing your favorite "news program" is the Daily Show*, right?)
So let's look at this incredibly informed (sarcasm) commentary from Rolling Stone.  You can see the bias dripping from the article, starting at the first paragraph:
Just as Dixiecrats once used poll taxes and literacy tests to bar black Southerners from voting, a new crop of GOP governors and state legislators has passed a series of seemingly disconnected measures that could prevent millions of students, minorities, immigrants, ex-convicts and the elderly from casting ballots.

Just in case you missed it, did you notice how they referred to the Democrats who installed and maintained Jim Crow as "Dixiecrats?" Once again, Democrats HATE hearing about their party's history, which is why they continue to try to change backstories with the GOP. Oh, and by the way, if you're a legal immigrant you probably have a green card. Oh, and also by the way, a green card IS A PHOTO ID PEOPLE!
Now who are supposedly being prevented from voting? Lets see, students, minorities, immigrants, ex-cons and the elderly. Why?  Well, let's dig further:
- Kansas and Alabama now require would-be voters to provide proof of citizenship before registering.

NOOOO! You mean you'd have to prove you're eligible to vote before registering to vote??? HOW DARE YOU!
- Maine repealed Election Day voter registration, which had been on the books since 1973.

You mean that a concerned citizen might have to take five minutes out of there day to go online and request a voter registration form? Listen people, I'm far too busy making a fort with my sofa cushions and an old blanket to do that.
- Five states – Florida, Georgia, Ohio, Tennessee and West Virginia – cut short their early voting periods.
You mean I'd need to take my responsibility and right to vote so seriously that I have to make time to vote on Election Day? What if I'm out of town! Oh, right...there's those absentee ballot things. But as we've established, I'm too busy building my couch fort to request an absentee ballot. You evil Republicans!
- Alabama, Kansas, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Wisconsin – will require voters to produce a government-issued ID before casting ballots. More than 10 percent of U.S. citizens lack such identification, and the numbers are even higher among constituencies that traditionally lean Democratic – including 18 percent of young voters and 25 percent of African-Americans.

You mean I would be forced to show I am who I say I am before I vote? You mean like I have to do to purchase alcohol, tobbaco, cough syrup, some allergy pills, open a bank account, rent or buy a home, get married, register for school, cash a check, get married, get on an airplane, apply for government benefits like Medicaid and food stamps, or enter a government building.

I've said it before, and I will say it again. The only people who are even capable of being disenfranchised by voter ID laws are subsistence farmers who live on a piece of tax-exempt land that they own due to squatters rights. Otherwise it is basically impossible to live in the adult world with no photo identification.
As to the claim that more than 10% of citizens have no photo ID...I'm wondering how many of those are inelligble to vote.  Now notice the cleverly chosen language of "U.S. Citizens."  One has to wonder why they didn't say "U.S. Adults" or "Citizens over 18 years old?"  Could it be this statistic includes my one year old nephew, who, while not having a photo ID, is also ONE YEAR OLD? (For those of you in Palm Beach County, FL that means NOT ELIGIBLE TO VOTE FOR 17 MORE YEARS.) He is a citizen, however, so he qualifies for this data.

Oh, by the way, American University's Center for Democracy and Election Management performed a study in 2008.  They found that, on average, LESS THAN 1% OF ELIGIBLE VOTERS HAD NO PHOTO ID! Yes, the number was slightly higher for black Americans, but that means it was 3.8%, which is still a fairly insignificant number, especially considering how necessary it is to have a photo ID in life.

Honestly, friends, the logic of this statement is the equivalent of saying that requiring ID before purchasing tobbaco products is discrimintation against American Indians, considering they are 66% more likely to be smokers than white and black Americans. They're also nearly 3 times more likely to be smokers than Asian-Americans. (Source) So apparently requiring ID to prove one is legally allowed to smoke is racially biased against American Indians. I blame the Republicans for...ummm....welll....some reason or another.

Bottom line, friends is this: It's basically impossible to live in the adult world without some kind of photo identification. So the only people being "disenfranchised" will be people who were never supposed to vote in the first place, whether those votes were cast from the grave, by those not registered to vote, or multiple votes by the same person.

So actually, the only question I have to ask is this: Why is it so important to the Democrat party to ensure that it's possible for people to vote without proving they are either eligible to vote or a citizen?  

-------------------
               
* If you watch the Daily Show for it's genuine, intended purpose (comedic entertainment based on the news) then this comment is not directed at you.

my favorite thoughts about RENOWN

recently i posted my 1,000th article on this blog.
it got me thinking about my favorite things i've written ABOUT the idea/essence of the word "renown" itself.

below are 5 of my favs that i landed on in a quick search:

summing up renown HERE

"so that" (stuck on it) [Psalm 67] HERE   

renown the 100th HERE  


unending fame [Psalm 135:13] HERE

1st ever renown blog HERE


i love hearing what people think about this stuff, so
WHAT DO YOU THINK?

Rumors of the Tea Party's Death Are Greatly Exaggerated

It's been claimed by the Drive-By Media and even some conservative media sources are saying the Tea Party is dead, citing the nomination of Mitt Romney by the Republican Party. But to paraphrase Mark Twain, the rumors of the Tea Party's demise have been greatly exaggerated.

First and foremost, and I have said this many times, the simple fact that Mitt Romney was the "establishment candidate" in this primary season shows the power of the Tea Party. In 2008, Romney was the "conservative alternative" to John McCain.  Now he's the establishment candidate.  Compared to the last few establishment candidates (John McCain, George W. Bush, Bob Dole, George H.W. Bush), Mitt is quite conservative. The Tea Party made that happen, my friends.

While we're at it, let's look at last week's Wisconsin Recall. Scott Walker, despite the massive onslaught from Big Unions, kept his job and in fact gained support over his 2010 election. Who do you think got Walker elected? The Tea Party, friends. And who do you think helped him keep his job? The Tea Party.

Or how about some of the Democrats nationally that are having to govern according to conservative principles. Take New York Governor Andrew Cuomo. While his social policies are as liberal as can be, his fiscal policies have been right out of the Tea Party. He has refused to raise taxes, recognizing FINALLY that businesses are leaving New York State in droves for a better business climate. And since it's a whole lot easier to leave a state and go to another state to do business then it is to move your business out of the nation, such moves happen a lot.

Yet another sign of the Tea Party's power showed up in my mailbox last week. The conservative Republican County Executive of my own county in New York, Maggie Brooks, is running to be my district's representative in the House of Representatives. Friends, I've gone to multiple candidate vettings at my 9/12 Project meetings (by the way, this is a branch of the Tea Party...oh and still going strong) and I've heard the the Republican Party representatives tell us "we've got a really deep bench in New York at the local level that can run for national office."  When I heard Maggie Brooks was running for Congress my thought was "it's about darn time your 'deep bench' yielded a solid conservative!"

Friends, the Tea Party is most definitely not dead. We have simply begun to take over the Republican Party. Which is precisely what we set out to do...turn the GOP back into the conservative party it claimed to be. At the end of the day, he who disregards the Tea Party does so at his peril.

Why Are Food Stamps Advertising?

For those of you who haven't noticed, I live in the liberal bastion of New York State. New York, apparently, has decided it's purpose in life is to grow government. Whether it's controlling our trans-fat consumption and now sugar consumption by legalizing sizes and ingredients in food or forcing the people of New York to pay some of the highest state cigarette taxes to stop you from doing something that's none of government's business, New York is second to none when it comes to liberal attitudes.

So I suppose it shouldn't surprise me to hear Food Stamps advertising, and yet it does. It also angers me. I see and hear commercials like this on radio and television regularly:


Think about this, friends. People who are genuinely in need of food are well aware of food stamps. I knew what food stamps were at a young age, even though my family did not use or need them. I was aware of the concept and what the program was for...to help people who are genuinely hungry be able to eat.

Now, as someone who has worked at a retail store (in fact I managed one) and saw how many people used their food stamps on items that were, while technically food (i.e. anything edible) to buy things that were not necessities or even nutritious, like candy, soda, cookies, etc. As a matter of fact, I would go so far to say that I saw more people spend their food stamps on junk food than I saw people buying bread or milk or soup. So, based on this experience over a period of time, one could assume that these individuals indeed were paying for actual food with either their own money or perhaps with food stamps someplace else. Even if the latter is true, clearly these individuals were receiving more than they needed to buy actual food and be certain they did not starve and still had plenty left over to buy Mountain Dew and Oreos.

The reason I tell you that story is to demonstrate the fact that New York is already dolling out more than needed in the food stamp program. But now they're inviting people who presumably already have enough to eat (or else they likely would have sought out food stamps on their own) to apply for food stamps. The commercial I've shown above says "even if you have savings you may be eligible."  Wait...so even if you have been fiscally responsible and put money aside for a rainy day, you might not be required to use it now that it's raining, because instead we'll give you free food?

Friends, the reality of the situation is that the food stamps program has no business advertising. As it is, New York's food stamp program has massive gaps that need correcting, because, unlike other states that limit food purchases like not allowing candy and soda to be purchased. These other states also put other reasonable restrictions like saying "orange juice is okay to purchase on food stamps BUT you cannot buy Tropicana, you have to buy the store brand," which to me is an incredibly reasonable restriction, considering store brand OJ is no less nutritious than name brand.

At the end of the day, I don't have an issue with responsible application of the food stamp program. I do not have a problem with having a program where genuinely needy people can get assistance buying eggs, bread, milk and beef. But if the food stamp program is not only providing candy and soda but is also inviting those who have enough to eat to apply to the program because "I know you have enough, but what if we gave you some free stuff anyway" then that is big government run amuck.

Stop Bringing Up Bush to Argue Against Conservatism

Liberals and even Libertarians love this tactic: When conservatives attack Obama's irresponsible spending, talk about Bush's irresponsible spending. It genuinely misses the point: Republicanism and Conservatism aren't synonyms. It's a straw man argument.


Look, most conservatives are also registered Republicans, especially in elected office. But it's not a dual enthymeme.  While most conservatives are Republicans, most Republicans aren't conservatives. (For those of you from Palm Beach County, FL, it's kind of like: all bears are mammals, but all mammals are not bears.)
This brings us to former President George W. Bush.  I've defended President Bush and I continue to do so, primarily on the grounds of National Security. (I've said for years that Bush was a good President because a) we had no major Al Qaeda attacks on American soil post 9-11 and b) while he was President, Iran and North Korea sat in their corners and played with their blocks quietly.) Furthermore, if you told me I could trade Obama for Bush, I would literally knock people over to get a pen so I could sign that paper, toot-sweet.


That being said, on economics, Bush in many ways governed less conservatively than Bill Clinton.  (Gasp!) Let's not kid ourselves, Clinton was a weather vane. If the population wanted him to govern according to the platform of the Fancy Dress Party, he would have. (It's a real thing, look it up!)  He also quietly instilled a lot of liberal policies and nominated many liberal judges. Oh, and let's not forget that the conservative reforms of Clinton were forced upon him by Newt Gingrich and the Republican Revolution. I've always said the 90s boom was not due to anything Clinton did but due to policies Clinton fought and lost then took credit for, like Welfare Reform and the Capital Gains tax cuts.

With the exception of Bush's tax rate reductions (they've been in place eleven years, I refuse to call them "tax cuts"), Bush put forward a lot of big government policies.  Medicare Part D is one of the biggest examples. No Child Left Behind is another. (Granted, this would've had a better chance of succeeding if schools didn't do their darndest to circumvent that law instead of following it.)


Either way, Bush did not overall govern as a conservative. One cannot consider Bush's failures as an indictment of conservatism. As far as Ronald Reagan, liberals hate to remember that Reagan got as much done as he did with a Democratic House of Representatives blocking him every step of the way and a Democrat Senate during his second term, and when he had the Senate he did not have a majority sufficient to override a philibuster.  So when you think about it, the levels of conservative reform Reagan accomplished were darn near miraculous.

At the end of the day, Bush was an example of the failure of REPUBLICANISM but not conservatism, and that failure was primarily because Republicans stopped governing as conservatives. And that's why there's a Tea Party, friends. To get conservatism back into the GOP. 

this is my 1,000th blog post

that's a pretty creative & original title for this post, don't you think?

it's crazy, but 1,000 times i have written some thoughts from my brain and posted them here on renown.

i started thinking about that and realized that there aren't all that many things that we discipline ourselves to do 1,000 times. (i can remember shooting 1,000 free throws in a day in middle school & high school... but it didn't happen all that often.)
so, in part, i'm celebrating today. celebrating the 1,000th post to this site i call renown.

i've learned i'm not all that great at celebrating personal stuff. i don't like to waste time thinking about something i've already done. i want to get on with it... do the next thing.
so, my 1st thought today is just to get on with it. tomorrow will be post # 1,001 and so on...
BUT
i decided to pause for just a moment today and celebrate these 1,000 articles i've written. it is a milestone. i do feel a little sense of accomplishment.

so, HAPPY 1,000 to me! to renown.

there. i did it. can we move on now? :)

many parts of the last 4 & a half years of my life are recorded on this site. i go back and look through it somewhat often. it's an easy way to remember certain times. to see what i was doing or thinking about back then. to see how much i've changed.
because i've written about all kinds of things - life, passions, what i'm learning, who i want to become, theology, philosophy, ideas, etc... etc...

it's easy to look back and see where i've been, how i've changed, etc...
i read some of my old articles and think "what was i thinking when i wrote that? that is so bad."
and others i read and think "man, that was really really good. did i really write that?"

i'm most happy that all this writing has given me an avenue to really "work stuff out". writing forces me to flesh my thoughts out... or else i might just let stuff stay in my head forever and never be forced to land on what i really think about some important stuff.

i started this blog for 1 main reason. the same 1 main reason i live my life.
RENOWN.

hence, the name of the blog.

everybody pretty much lives their life for renown, whether they know it or not. they live their life for the FAME, honor, glory, and renown of SOMEBODY or SOMETHING.

i intentionally choose which renown to live my life for. the only one that matters because it's the only one that is TRULY renown.
because renown is ultimate and unending fame. there is only 1 fame that is ultimate and unending.

and i just said that i wanted this blog to simply be a reflection & an outlet for a life attempting to live for God's renown.

but there has been a really cool "by-product." i take joy in the fact that some of these 1,000 posts have along the way AFFECTED people. i don't want to be so bold as to say it has "changed" people, but no doubt these 1,000 writings have AFFECTED people... MOVED them maybe?
and these are their words not mine. these are things tons of people have told me. i would like to think it has also affected tons more who have not told me.

i'll stop for a moment today and celebrate that too.
but now i'll move on and keep writing with the secondary hope that the next thousand posts can affect even more people and move them even more deeply.
move them in a direction that i hope this blog is also moving me = to live our lives for the only renown that matters.

i wrote and published these 1st thousand articles in just under 4 & a half years.
there's 1,000 more in the bag (my head and halfway on paper) and coming quickly. hopefully it will only take about 3 years for the next thousand to land on renown.

maybe then we'll have a "happy 2,000" party?

No Mr. President, the Private Sector IS NOT fine...

It was President Obama's latest ridiculously out of touch statement. "The Private Sector is doing just fine." He then went on to claim it's poor poverty ridden government that really needs help. (I know...a liberal claiming government is in dire straits...never saw that one coming!)  There's only one major issue with Obama's math...IT'S FALSE!

First and foremost, still 8% of Americans are unemployed, three full years after Obama claimed unemployment wouldn't go above that number. Just as importantly, an additional 10% of Americans are underemployed...working part time instead of full time. (According to Gallup.)

Secondly, the Private Sector ALWAYS bore the brunt of the recession. Government, friends, actually has grown significantly since December of 2007. 


Take a look, friends. Federal government continued to add jobs until about First Quarter 2011, at which point they dropped a few but still remain 11.6% in the black in terms of hiring since December 2007. State governments are at a slight negative, a drop of -1.3% aggregate since 2007, but even so they saw a spike for a solid two years and did not begin any real drops until around 2011. Local governments are at an aggregate of -2.8%, but like states, they didn't even begin to drop below their starting point until 2010. 

Now for the why states and local governments are dropping as is the Federal government from their four year high: THEY WERE TOO BIG TO BEGIN WITH! That's right, friends. Government was doing too much, and yes, had too many bureaucrats.  Now, all of a sudden, poor old government is being forced to move toward living within it's means. It's just not fair is what it is...government has to live within it's means, so now it's suffering. 

Sorry, Mr. Obama, government is not suffering. It's just finally catching up with the realities the rest of us have dealt with for quite some time now.  Government was spending too much, employing too many redundant bureaucrats, wasting our hard earned dollars. Now they are seeing some cuts in their spending (which was too high to begin with). Poor government.

This, my friends, is the President we have. This President who believes government being asked to cut their spending like the rest of us had to do years ago is just plain cruel. This President wants to stay our President. We must not let him. Let's elect Somebody Else in 2012.

what is love?

unfortunately i can't ask that question -- "What is love?" -- without dropping an 80s club beat box & singing that really annoying Haddaway song from back in the day... "What is love? baby don't hurt me, don't hurt me, no more." (& then i think about Will Ferrell & that SNL skit they always did with this song...)
hopefully that won't be stuck in your head the rest of the day like it will be mine.

anyway...
1st John is a pretty sweet book that actually answers the question. it was the first book i ever translated from Greek to English in my first Greek exegesis class in college. it was a beast of a project, but really rewarding because 1st John is so rich and amazing.

Recently i was reading 1 John 3 (in English of course... i can't remember very much Greek these days) and i remembered how many STRONG and BOLD statements John makes.

try this one on for size:

"If any one of you has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God be in you?"
- 1 John 3:17

wow. that's pretty intense.

how can the love of God possibly be in you if you don't LIVE your love out for others?
literally - if you see a fellow human in NEED and that doesn't MOVE you to do something about it... how can you possibly say the love of God is in you?
it's a rhetorical Q with the obvious answer being "the love of God is NOT in you." 
we probably better check ourselves.

and we can assume pity doesn't just mean "feel sorry for them in your heart."
if you look at John's rhetorical Q in the whole context it's obvious. Check it:

"This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for one another. If any one of you has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God be in you? Dear children, let us NOT love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth."
  - 1 John 3:16-18

YES! don't "love" with your cheap words... because that's not love! LOVE WITH YOUR ACTIONS! which is the only true way to love.

this is a way of life, not just something we talk about or mentally assent to.

and it seems to me like John is laying the foundation by saying = "HERE is our example of love --> JESUS died for us. so, if we really love people we will give up our lives for them!" 
maybe not literally, but in every way. we will put their lives ahead of our own.
THAT is what love is.

that doesn't sound too familiar to me. i don't see many Christians doing this.

but i do see a lot of people "loving" with their words.

i say, save your breath. because you're just wasting it.


and i think John is saying the same.

Bain Capital Attacks Show How Little the Left Understands Business

Bain Capital. It's been President Obama's big focus of attacks against Governor Mitt Romney in the 2012 Presidential Campaign.  The attacks boil down to this: "Bain Capital wasn't in business to create jobs. It was in business to make money."

Anyone with an ounce of a clue hears ideas like that and says "NO DUH!" People don't start businesses so they can provide people with jobs or benefits. Anyone who has ever run a business can tell you that. Unfortunately, this is what your garden variety liberal thinks is the purpose of businesses; to give people jobs.

Now don't get me wrong...creation of jobs is a positive consequence of a successful business. That does happen. It's part of the great symbiosis of Capitalism and the economy. To give a good analogy, I did not go to college to form lasting friendships. I went to college to get a degree so I could get a good job.  That was the purpose of me going to college. However, one additional positive consequence of me going to college was me meeting some of my closest friends. It often happens that way, just like when you open a business and it is successful, you often create jobs. Creating jobs is the frequent consequence of opening a business, but it is not the purpose of opening a business.

So to attack Bain Capital for "not being in business to create jobs" is complete foolishness.  Then again, consider the source.  These attacks came from a man who has never run a business or even had a real job in his life in President Obama. That's where you get hairbrained overly idealistic but unrealistic premises like the one the President is giving now.

As to the fact that Bain Capital "liquidated assets and fired people," well, again, it shows how little liberals understand business and economics. Here's what Bain really does:  Bain Capital comes in to failing businesses and buys them in an attempt to salvage that company. For those of you in Palm Beach County, FL, that means that the company was failing ANYWAY and all the employees were about to lose their jobs ANYWAY, then Bain comes in and attempts to save the business (including some to all of the jobs that would otherwise be lost). 

Ideally, Bain is able to turn around the company. For them that means they buy the company up at a low price, turn it around so that it becomes profitable again, then sells the company at a profit to other investors to continue it forward. When this works, abracadabara, tons and tons of jobs are saved and often more jobs are created as the now successful business continues to grow. When this is unsuccessful, the company closes, and yes, people lose their jobs. But remember, they were going to lose their jobs much sooner if Bain hadn't come in to try to salvage the company.

In short, when Bain succeeds, they genuinely save jobs (not just the phantom "jobs created or saved" statistic the Obama Administration invented) and often create them.  When Bain fails, people at the least had jobs longer than they would have had Bain not entered the equation. Either way, this is a far more sound economic plan than the Obama plan of "Criticize businesses and punish them for success until the economy turns around." For those of you from Palm Beach County, FL, that means "The beatings will continue until morale improves."

Then again, this is the same President who said "When you’re president...as opposed to the head of a private equity firm, then your job is not simply to maximize profits. Your job is to figure out how everybody in the country has a fair shot. Your job is to think about those workers who get laid off, and how are we paying them for their retraining?” - President Obama

Actually, Mr. President, no...that is not your job. Your job is not to try to create your own definition of "fairness" by redistributing wealth and paying for retraining. That's not the job of the President. Fairness is created by maintaining equal opportunity, not equal results. You know what does a fine job of that? The United States Constitution.

My friends, the Left has shown us once again how little they understand how business works. Considering their misunderstanding of how business works is what has continued this economic mess as to this day in conjuncture with Republicans foolishly using liberal economic theory at the outset (looking at you, T.A.R.P. ).  The Bain Capital attacks are just another example of why we need to defeat Obama. Even if he's a genuine economic fool and not someone with malicious intent, he's still a fool. So let's elect a businessman in 2012 who has a clue of how to fix this problem. (For those of you in Palm Beach County, FL, that'd be "Mitt Romney.")