A NEW YEAR, AND THE FIRST EDITORIAL COMMENT: and to fit
the occasion, we offer our New Year's Resolution(s). We resolve -- no, we
pledge to you, our readers, that throughout this new year we will continue
to be a trustworthy and dependable Evangelical Christian voice, and with a
strong Conservative position on religion, politics, culture and economics.
Our guiding directive as we begin this new year, will be as expressed by
Paul,"...forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto
those things which are before ..." (Phil. 3:13) And we will continue to
follow the instructions given us by Jesus, that we are to be both Light and
Salt in this world (Matt. 5: 13-14), and that we are to proclaim the Gospel
to the whole world, and to teach all nations the things Jesus has taught us.
(Mark 16:15; Matt. 28: 19-20) ... always remembering the "sound
doctrine" from Paul's letter to Titus, that we are to be "looking for that
blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of our great God and our
Saviour, Jesus Christ." (Titus 2:13) That is our pledge to you, and with it
we continue to remind you that there are 671 days till Election Day, Nov.
6, 2012 . . . 671 days to pray and to plan for our voting to reclaim our
America to once again being the kind of a nation our Founding Fathers
intended it to be. . . or in the words of Abraham Lincoln, Nov. 19, 1863:
"...that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom, and
that government of the people...by the people...for the people...shall
not perish from the earth."
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A FEW MONTHS AGO WE USED THE WORDS
"QUO VADIS?" IN OUR HEADING. AT NO TIME
COULD THAT QUESTION BE MORE APPROPRIATE
THAN IT IS TODAY
"Quo Vadis?" -- "Whither goest thou?" was the question Peter asked of
Jesus (John 13:36) Today we might well alter the question slightly, and
let it read: "Where are we going?" We are starting a new year with a new
and different power structure in Washington. We have just endured two
years of totally one-sided political control under a Liberal Democrat
president and two equally Liberal Democrat houses of Congress. Together
they have brought this country into what may well prove to be the worst
situation the United States of America has experienced in its more than
230 years of existence
Now we face this new year, the first year of the second decade of the 21st
century, with a modestly different power structure -- still with a Liberal
Democrat as president, and a Liberal, Democrat majority in the Senate,
but now with a more Conservative, Republican majority in the House,
meaning -- among other things -- that every plan and decision Mr. Obama
makes will not receive automatic approval and enactment into law by
his subservient Congress.
So where do we start with this first commentary in this new year? Well,
here are two subjects we might consider . . .
First, we must not forget our fellow Christians overseas. The Rt. Rev.
David C. Anderson, Sr., President of the American Anglican Council,
wrote eloquently of the plight of Christians in China, parts of India, and
in areas of the world which are under Islamic authority, where Christian
worship, particularly at Christmas, is dangerous and often fatal. Bishop
Anderson commented, "Considering all of the martyrs of previous
centuries, I suspect that more faithful men, women and children are
dying for their faith in Jesus Christ now than ever before." That is
doubtless true, but it is a fact that we who still enjoy freedom of religion
here in America, all too often fail to remember.
Current news headlines should awaken us to the ongoing persecution
that Christian believers around the world are experiencing. Just this
past weekend, as Christians gathered to observe the start of a new year
in the coastal city of Alexandria, Egypt, a horrendous crime against
Egypt’s Indigenous Coptic Christians occurred as they welcomed in the
New Year, with a peaceful midnight prayer vigil at the Church of the
Saints. A car loaded with lethal explosives with a sign in the back
window stating, "there is more to come," exploded just as the Coptic
faithful were leaving the Church, killing 21 and injuring at least 100.
In last week's issue, we reported that "peace loving Islamists are still
at it," with reference to an attack by Islamists in Jos, Nigeria, on
Christmas eve which left 80 Christians dead and more than 100 wounded.
This past weekend in the Nigerian capital city, Abuja, a bomb exploded in
a crowded market, leaving 4 dead and a dozen wounded. Nigerian President
Goodluck Jonathan said an Islamist group was responsible for the attack.
Rae Burnett, vice president and Africa director of Christian Aid Mission,
said, "The situation is political in the sense that Muslims want to take
over Nigeria. They want their way. They want more Sharia (Islamic law)."
Throughout India, attacks on Christians by Hindus and Muslims have been
escalating, with more than a score of such attacks occuring during the
Christmas season. K.P. Yohannan, President of Gospel for Asia, compares
persecution in India to media coverage of high gasoline prices: "All of a
sudden the entire media is talking about it. But after about six or seven
months, nobody talks about it. It all becomes normal. Persecution is
exactly the same. I see that no change has taken place."
And one further note: in Iraq the persecution of Christians, now nearing
the elimination of the Christian populace, continues unabated, with many
Christians having been killed in recent months, some murdered in their
homes. Dr. Patrick Sookhedo, Intl. Dir. of the Barnabas Fund, said: "It
is like living in a prison camp. You could leave the house but you don't
know what is going to happen. Because of the targeted attacks, there is
a chance that Christians venturing out to work or onto the streets will
be attacked or killed. The fear is effectively leaving Christians stranded
in their homes." Meanwhile, thousands of Christians have fled from Iraq.
Barry Rubin, Dir. Global Research in International Affairs, commented:
"What is the response? Christian priests and ministers are not giving
sermons telling their flock to hate and kill or even to be rude to Muslims.
There are no calls for revenge, no reprisal attacks on Muslims, and no
real comprehension in many political, media, and academic circles of
what is happening in the world."
President Obama commented on the Islamic attacks on Christians in this
rather ambiguous statement, "I strongly condemn the separate and
outrageous terrorist bombing attacks in Egypt and Nigeria. The attack
on a church in Alexandria, Egypt caused 21 reported deaths and dozens
of injured from both the Christian and Muslim communities." Pamela
Geller, writing in "Atlas Shrugs" commented: "President Obama's
condemnation of the Islamic attacks on Christmas and New Year's was
grotesque, misleading and deceptive...These were jihadi attacks against
Christians. Islamic supremacists slaughtering non-Muslims. Does
Obama mourn the deaths of homicide bombers as well?"
With all this news before us, let's add one more New Year's Resolution:
Pray for our fellow Christians throughout the world in this new year, 2011.
Second, you may recall our report on Mr. Obama's "Credibility crisis."
It was just another way of saying that we can't believe every thing (or
perhaps anything) that he says. That absence of credibility reappeared
last week in a shocking way. We are not strong supporters of Ms. Palin
(although we agree that she has been treated unfairly by the elite media),
but her use of the term "death panels" as expressing an Obamacare
proposal to pay doctors for giving seniors advice on how not to extend
their life, unfairly earned for her "The biggest political lie of the year"
award from by "Politifact.com," a "fact-checking" site on the Internet.
But that "lie" turned out to be true, and was reported in a front page story
in the usually pro-Obama New York Times. When Obamacare was being
developed, the proposal to encourage end-of-life planning created such a
political storm over its "death panels," that the Democrats dropped the
proposal from their reform of the nation's health care system. But the
Obama administration has been able to achieve its policy goal through
the regulation process which went into effect Jan.1, without a single vote,
but with just a stroke of the president's pen. And this is where the lack of
credibility is exposed: in an effort to contradict the Times story, the
official White House spokesman, Reid Cherlin, said: "The Times story
is wrong. This benefit was signed into law under President Bush." Not
exactly true -- and surely the Obama administration knew this. The
end-of-life counselling provision was included in the "Medicare
Improvement Act of 2008" -- but President Bush vetoed it, and his veto
was over-ridden by Nancy Pelosi and the Congressional Democrats. So it
was enacted during the Bush administration -- but by a Democrat over-
ride of President Bush's veto. It is obvious that the old Obama Credibility
Crisis is still with us. You can't believe much they say.
As always, it is interesting to note "What Others Are Saying."
Everett McKinley Dirksen (Fmr. U.S. Senator from Illinois): "I do
not want the Congress or the country to commit fiscal suicide on the
E. J. Dionne, Jr. (Washington Post): "Let's begin with what is a most
painful fact for liberals: Conservatism, a doctrine that seemed
moribund on election night in 2008, enjoyed a far more rapid comeback
than all liberals and even most conservatives anticipated... The energy
in our politics has shifted rightward with an abruptness that was
inconceivable in the final weeks of the 2008 campaign..."
Skip MacLure (in Conservative Outpost): "I know now how our
patriot forefathers, good British subjects all, could have been forced
into acts of civil disobedience followed by open rebellion against what
they saw as a government out of control and committing illegal acts
against the citizens of the colonies. I and many other patriots, have
been experiencing these same emotions. It is not easy to stand by and
watch the Marxist cabal shred the Constitution and the rule of law.
They used to do it undercover and in secret. Now they are doing it
out in the open."
Salena Zito (Editorial columnist): "Just because you say somethiing
does not make it true, no matter how many times you say it or how
many people repeat it. Case in point: the mantra among Washington
media circles that President Obama is the new 'Comeback Kid' ... Well,
those endless year-end reports of Obama's political recovery during
Congress' lame-duck session are greatly exaggerated."
Michael Evans (Jerusalem Prayer Team): "If Iran goes atomic in
2011, what will that mean for the world? The question presupposes
that Iran will not be deterred from its goal. There is absolutely no
doubt in my mind that Israel is fully prepared to stop Iran. There is
also no doubt that President Obama is totally prepared to stop Israel
...The Holy Grail of understanding is that an atomic Iran will usher in
a nuclear arms race such as the world has never seen."
Gary Kreep (Exec. Dir. U.S. Justice Foundation): "A conservative
majority is once again taking the reins of leadership in the House of
Representatives. It is now time that the Members of the U.S. Congress
to finally conduct Congressional hearings to answer the 'Is he, or is
he not ...' question, regarding the eligibility of Barack Hussein Obama
to serve as the President of the United States of America."
And "One Liners" are always interesting . . .
"We Conservatives are winning the war of ideas ... we are witnessing
historically, a Conservative ascendancy." -- Sean Hannity, TV talk
"This administration ... they're destroying this country." --R. Lee Ermey,
Fmr. U.S. Marine Drill Instructor
"... things are so bad for Barack Obama these days that even Democrats
are asking for his birth certificate." -- Jay Leno, "Tonight Show" host
And just these few random "Afterthoughts" . . .
A time to remember: John Hendren, on ABC's World News over the
weekend, commented: "The sun has set on the Kennedy era," and
pointed out that for the first time in 64 years (since 1947) no member of
the Kennedy family will hold public office in Washington, D.C.
A follow-up question to Gary Kreep's comment above: With so many
Americans out of work and barely getting by financially, wasn't it the
height of arrogance for Mr. Obama to take a 10 day vacation in Hawaii,
costing at least $1.5 million? Apparently reducing expenses is required
of the rest of us, but not of Barack and Michelle, their family and friends.
A presidential move that is difficult to understand. We know that Mr.
Obama caters to the homosexuals with repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell,"
and his promise to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act, etc. -- even though
there are so few homosexuals to give him their votes. And similarly, he
supports the Muslims by honoring their religious events and ignoring
Christian events, even though there are more Christians than Muslims to
give him their votes. But why would he phone Jeffrey Lurie, the owner
of the Philadelphia Eagles, to commend him for starring Michael Vick,
who was just out of prison for inconceivable beastiality toward dogs?
There are far more dog lovers in this country, yet Mr. Lurie said that Mr.
Obama was "passionate" about Vick's situation.
A touch of humor as we enter the new year: Adam Brodsky, writing
in the New York Post, offered a list of predictions that won't come true
in 2011. Included were these few gems: "If you like your health plan,
you'll be able to keep it" . . . "US troops will begin leaving Afghanistan,
and the War on Terror will finally end" . . . "Eager to follow the new
European model, President Obama will push for true fiscal austerity
by Washington" . . . "President Obama will take ownership of the
nation's ailing economy and stop blaming George Bush." There are
more in similar vein, but these offer a fair sampling.
More problems for Janet Napolitano: Some of the nation's largest
airports are responding to recent public outrage over security screening
by considering whether they should hire private firms to replace use of
the Transportation Security Administration staff. Sixteen airports,
including San Francisco and Kansas City International Airport, have
already made the switch. Even the Metropolitan Washington Airports
Authority which governs the national capital's airports, is studying the
option, spokeswoman Tara Hamilton said. Rep. John L. Mica (R, FL),
the incoming chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure
Committee, has written to 200 of the nation's largest airports, urging them
to consider switching to using private companies. "If you look at TSA's
performance, have they ever stopped a terrorist? Anyone can get
through," Mica said. "We've been very lucky, very fortunate."
Now here is a frightening closing "Afterthought" . . . 82% of the U.S.
casualties in Afghanistan in 2010 took place in Afghan provinces adjacent
to the Pakistan border, a border that a top U.S. military official said last
week cannot be sealed: "As far as the Afghan border itself, you know, I
think it’s naive to say that we can stop…forces coming through the
border,” Col. Viet Luong said on Dec. 28. Luong commands a U.S. Army
Brigade that is in charge of 162 miles of the Afghan border.
America's Founding Fathers knew the kind of nation they intended,
and their thoughts, warnings and hopes for this nation merit our attention.
"Tis our true policy to steer clear of permanent Alliances with any
portion of the foreign world." -- George Washington, 1796
"I have been happy in believing that whatever follies we may be led
into as to foreign nations, we shall never give up on our Union, the last
anchor of our hope, and that alone which is to prevent this heavenly
country from becoming an arena of gladiators."
-- Thomas Jefferson, 1797
"The essence of Government is power; and power, lodged as it must
be in human hands, will ever be liable to abuse."
-- James Madison, 1829