A CHANGE IN OUR APPROACH TO NEWS
MAJOR COMMENT No. 1
We have long had a very high regard for Mark
Alexander, Publisher of the Patriot Post, and read
it regularly. This past week Mark made a suggestion
which we will condense and utilize the basic element.
He sent this message to all of his subscribers: "As
you know, our readers are our best promoters ...
Please take a moment and invite your family,
friends and associates to subscribe." Then he
suggested a message for his subscribers to send to
friends, family and names on their group lists.
We totally agree! Our subscribers are also our best
promoters. Because we have never had funds to pay
for promotional projects, we have been able to grow
only through our subscribers recommending our
newsletter to others. And several thousand new
subscribers have joined because many of you
have done just that!
So, like Mark Alexander, we are suggesting a brief
message you may be willing to send to your circle of
friends. Here it is: "I subscribe to American News
Commentary" a weekly email newsletter offering a
concise, informative and challenging analysis of the
week's most important news events which have a
direct effect on the lives of Christian believers -- and
with helpful suggestions as to what we can do about
them. I urge you to do the same -- subscribe to
American News Commentary by going to this link:
And it is totally FREE! No subscription charge, no
solicitations for contributions, and nothing is offered
We hope many new subscribers will join the Patriot
Post and we also hope that many new subscribers
will join the American News Commentary.
MAJOR COMMENT No. 2
By far the most frequent news item in the American
news media, print and broadcast, are the announced
plans of the Obama administration to deal with the
American aspects of the present world-wide economic
crisis, whether is it called "recession" or "depression."
Almost daily the president speaks to another group,
mayors, governors, the Congress and public rallies
reminiscent of his recent campaign for election
There are several elements in this so-called "Stimulus
Plan," each one of which concerns all of us, but some
of which are not within our purview. .
On military matters, we are not experts, but we
can understand one aspect of the military situation
as outlined in this this news release, with no need for
any editorial comment: "BISHKEK, Kyrgyzstan -
Kyrgyz President Kurmanbek Bakiyev on Friday
(Feb. 20) signed the bill to close an air base the
U.S. military uses for troops and supplies heading
to Afghanistan. Once the Kyrgyz government
officially presents the measure to U.S.
representatives, the American military will have
180 days to withdraw from the Manas facility.
"U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates said the
U.S. would work with Kyrgyzstan on keeping the
base open, and said one option may be offering
to pay larger fees to do so.The air base is the
United States' only base in Central Asia and is
used to transport military personnel and cargo
to Afghanistan and to refuel aircraft. (President
Obama has just authorized an increase of 17,000
U.S. troops in Afghanistan.)
"Bakiyev announced plans to close the base after
talks in Moscow in early February, when he
secured more than $2 billion in aid and loans
Some of the news media are already calling this new
venture "Obama's Viet Nam." This is not our field of
expertise, but it is an area for American Christians'
concern and prayer.
On Economic matters, again, this is not our area of
expertise, but we can certainly observe what is taking
place. On the day the president signed the 1,000-plus
pages of the "Stimulus Plan" (admittedly unread by
any of the Senators and Members of Congress who
voted for it) the Dow Jones Index plunged some 300
points to new 3 year lows. Within two or three days
it had reached a low level not experienced since the
days of the Clinton administration 12 years ago. The
new Secretary of the Treasury was heralded for his
forthcoming announcement of a new plan to deal
with the bank crisis. But when he presented it, he
failed miserably, even by the most kind evaluations.
The subtle hints about "nationalizing the banks" from
key people in Washington haven't helped.
Meantime, despite all these conferences and summit
meetings, the president's performance approval
index as reported daily by Rasmussen Reports,
continues on it's gradual decline and the Consumer
Confidence Index, which measures consumer
confidence on a daily basis, fell again on Monday to
55.5 -- the lowest level of consumer confidence ever
recorded in the seven-year history of the Index, and
the fourth time a new low has been set this month.
This particular problem -- this aspect of the crisis --
is not one for which we have any experience in solving
-- nor, apparently does anyone else -- but it is an
urgent matter for prayer that the present administration
will ultimately do better than in its first attempts.
And on political matters, this, too, is not our area
of expertise, but here, too, we have serous concerns.
The new administration promised "transparency" (the
new buzz word for open and honest disclosure) and
a new standard of ethical behavior. "We need
earmark reform," candidate Obama said in the
presidential campaign debate in Oxford, Miss. But
the new omnibus spending bill is said to contain
9,000 "earmarks" -- billions of dollars for local
projects inserted by the members of Congress as
the bill moved through the various committees.
And the political transparency got a bit clouded as
one presidential cabinet appointment after another
fell by the wayside on grounds of some sort of
personal corruption. And the much talked about
and much promised health-care reform -- that all-
important cabinet post is still open. And the Census
operations -- always a function of the Commerce
Department -- have been shifted into the White
House, where control of the nation's congressional
and electoral representation will now be managed.
No, it's politics as usual in Washington . . . but this
is not an area where we have any direct expertise.
But in Christian belief matters -- there we can
speak authoritatively. And in this area we do have
some serious concerns with the Obama "Stimulus
Plan," and some other items on the Obama Agenda.
These issues are not as between Republicans and
Democrats, nor in a certain sense are they between
Conservatives and Liberals. The issues in the Obama
administration's plans which are of most concern to
us are between Christians and anti-Christians.
We have long emphasized the Christian heritage
of America as demonstrated by the founding fathers.
For example, Patrick Henry in 1796: “It cannot be
emphasized too clearly and too often that this
nation was founded, not by religionists, but by
Christians; not on religion, but on the gospel of
Jesus Christ." But in one decision after another
President Obama is scrapping the Christian principles
upon which this nation was founded, and that must
be of concern to every Christian.
The president encourages abortion, and freedom of
choice for women to kill their babies. Since the Roe
v. Wade decision, some 50 million babies have been
killed in America. How would you rank this?
The president opposes any ban on same-sex unions,
has pledged to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act,
signed into law by President Clinton, and offers strong
support to LGBT issues. How would you rank this?
The president's "Stimulus Plan" which he very hastily
signed into law contains severe restrictions on religious
schools and colleges. How would you rank this?
This Democrat administration with its control of both
houses of Congress is set on a course to re-institute
the "Fairness Doctrine" which will effectively silence
Conservative and Christian use of broadcast media.
How would you rank this?
With all the publicity the president is receiving,
it is only reasonable, and to be expected, that some
dire predictions about his place in history would
emerge. One correspondent this past week wrote
that he may be the last president of the United States
of America. Other staunch advocates of the "end
times" view-point have put together the usual
eschatological prophecies of the Bible and have
clearly (in their minds) proved that he is the anti-Christ;
just as they did for Mussolini, FDR and Mikhail
Gorbachev, to name a few in times past.
From Election Day, 2008, we have urged prayer
by American Christians for God to give wisdom to
President Obama and his administration as they
attempt to deal with the challenges they face. We
still do urge such prayer support, but that in no way
lessens our concerns with respect to the anti-Christian
positions we have outlined herein.
Just one founding father quote: “Providence has
given to our people the choice of their rulers, and
it is the duty, as well as the privilege and interest
of our Christian nation to select and prefer
Christians for their rulers.” -- John Jay, 1816
Some Random Afterthoughts . . .
Not exactly a "one liner," but a nice tribute to a
great American leader, as found in a recent
advertisement: "Few have had a greater impact
on America than Dwight D. Eisenhower. As
general he led the Allies to victory in World War
II. As the 34th U.S. president , he brought a time
of peace and prosperity to Americans after
decades of depression and war."
An embarrassment for Nancy Pelosi and Catholic
political leaders. Speaker Pelosi had a brief audience
with Pope Benedict XVI -- and her news release was
so different from the official release by the Vatican as
to lead to the question: "Were they both at the same
meeting?" The Vatican report said that the Pope
quite frankly lectured Ms. Pelosi on the necessity for
Roman Catholics to respect life at all stages, starting
with conception. Ms. Pelosi's "spin" was that she
and her husband were delighted to have met the
Pope, and that she had commended him for his
response to the needs of unfortunate people around
the world. She made no mention of the stern rebuke
she had received. Ms. Pelosi's final embarrassment
must have been that contrary to usual practice, there
was no picture of her with the Pope. Vice President
Biden is also a nominal Catholic, and like Ms. Pelosi
also supports abortion. One wonders if he will dare
visit the Pope, and how his publicists will handle the
American church membership is in decline with
few evidences of any growth. Of the nation's 25
largest church groups, only 4 reported growth in
membership according to the 2009 Yearbook,
edited by the National Council of Churches, and
just released this week. Those 4 which showed
growth in membership were: Church of Jesus Christ
of Latter Day Saints (Mormons) up by 1.63%;
Assemblies of God up by 0.96%; Jehovah's
Witnesses up by 2.12%, and Church of God of
Cleveland, Tenn. up by 2.04%.
The two largest churches, Roman Catholic and
Southern Baptist, reported declines of 0.59%
0.24% respectively. Given the size of both churches,
the declines were not earth-shattering, but both
were contrary to the growth patterns usually
reported, and they now join the majority of the
nation's churches in reporting a loss in membership.
More gaffes by the Archbishop of Canterbury:
just one year ago Rowan Williams predicted that it
was inevitable that the Shariah Law of Islam would
become "enshrined" in the British legal system.
Now he says that public opinion is siding with him,
and that society is coming around to his views. Just
what the ailing Anglican Communion needs!
And from the second president: "The general
principles, on which the Fathers achieved
independence, were . . . the general principles
of Christianity."-- John Adams, 1813
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