THIS IS BECOMING A FAMILIAR ANNOUNCEMENT: Last week
we had no choice but to explain that our long promised new format would be
delayed -- and hopefully would appear this week. Sorry to say: it's not going
to happen this week, either. One of our readers offered this comment: "The
content is more important than the appearance." While we do appreciate
the loyalty of our readers, we want you to know we are trying to produce a
more attractive, easier to read publication. And we will. Exactly "when" is
the uncertain aspect,. Thanks for your patience.
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"Do not pray for tasks equal to your powers;
pray for powers equal to your tasks."
Phillip Brooks, 19th century American clergyman
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A VERY BRIEF INTRODUCTORY COMMENT: Just to clarify what
we are, and what we do: as a reminder, we are not a newsletter or a news
report; you can find the news in a score of other sources. Our prime purpose
is to offer a commentary on current events -- national and international --
and aways from this three-fold position: Pro-Christian, Pro-American and
Pro-Conservative.You can always count on that. If you look elsewhere, and
can't find that certainty in the opinions being expressed, come back to ANC.
We have no intention of changing.
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A MEMO FROM BILL CLINTON TO BARACK OBAMA COULD
VERY WELL BE AS SIMPLE AS THESE FEW WORDS: "IT'S
THE ECONOMY, STUPID ...CUT CORPORATE TAXES."
Both of those phrases have been part of former president Clinton's leadership
style -- the first was the slogan which played a major role in propelling him
from the Governor's mansion in Arkansas to the White House. The second is
from a recent issue of Newsweek magazine where he spoke very incisively on
the economy, and a solution to the current national debt problem.
As Mr. Obama continues his 2012 re-election campaign, he is faced
with wide-spread public perception that he is incapable of handling America's
economy. It isn't difficult to write concerning the present state of the nation's
economy. From two widely differing ideological sources, first, the very Liberal,
pro-Obama New York Times, headlined it: "Job Growth Falters Badly,
Clouding Hope for Recovery." And the very Conservative Heritage
Foundation labeled it, "An economy in panic."
The New York Post provided this very succinct summary, "America's
economy grew by a minuscule 18,000 jobs in June, and unemployment
rose to an eye-popping 9.2 percent. Since April, the economy has
produced a mere 43,000 new jobs." The president's response was, "We
still have a long way to go and a lot of work to do to give people the
security and opportunity that they deserve." From the master of hyperbole,
that has to be the understatement of the year.
And if that were not a dismal enough picture, the paltry job growth totals for
May were revised downward by the Labor Departmnt from their previously
anounced figure of 54,000 to 25,000. To date, the Obama designed recovery
is still the weakest recovery of the post-WW II era . . . and on a contemporary
basis, America's job growth today is the lowest in the past 9 months.
We can remember well the promises of the Obama administration in 2009
when we were assured that the $862 billion "stimulus" plan would keep the
unemployment rate from ever hitting 8%. With the June increase to 9.2% on
the record, that vision of an 8% maximum looks awfully good. And in the
face of ever-growing unemployment, what is the Obama master plan to bring
it under control, and get us out of this recession, or whatever? Tax hikes.
And what is the Christian concern about an economy in shambles?
Face it: the Christian church exists on the financial support of the members.
The church is not, and cannot be, the recipient of federal funds, under an
Obama "stimulus" plan, or in any other way. As American unemployment
remains high . . . as peoples' incomes diminish . . . as expenses for food,
transportation, clothing, and utilities -- all elements of our cost of living --
continue to soar, discretionary funds (which church giving all too frequently
is) are going to dwindle, and church programs, missionary efforts -- our
whole Christian purposes in life -- are going to be curtailed. If you didn't
have a reason to pray for a solution to our economic problems, now you do.
Internationally, things aren't any better than they are here at home.
We have to wonder just how much longer Syria's President Assad, the
"reformer" so enthusiasticlly endorsed by Mr. Obama, John Kerry and
Hillary Clinton, will enjoy the good will of America -- after the American
Embassy was attacked and our diplomatic personnel put in extreme danger.
It's difficult to understand why we were so adamant that Mubarak in Egypt
and Quaddafi in Libya had to be "thrown under the bus," but Assad's
murdering of his people was OK. Incidentally, the most recent Rasmussen
survey on Mr. Obama's "non-war war" in Libya, discloses that only 24%
of Americans favor our action in Libya; 44% oppose it, and 32% are
In Egypt, the U.S. is reaching out to the Muslim Brotherhood, as first
publicly announced by Hillary Clinton in February and again on June 30.
After the U.S. supported overthrow of President Mubarak, the turn to
the Muslim Brotherhood is difficult to understand. This description
sums it up well: it merely wants to seize state power, transform Egypt into
an Islamist state under Sharia law, rule 90 million people, back Hamas in
trying to destroy Israel, overthrow the Palestinian Authority, help Jordan's
Muslim Brotherhood overthrow the monarchy, and sponsor terrorism
against Americans in the Middle East.
And Andrew McCarthy, writing in National Review, under the head:
"Iran is at war with us -- are we at war with Iran?" summarizes,
"Iran is setting the stage to frame the long-scheduled withdrawal
from Iraq as a case of the United States being 'driven out,' a
cowardly retreat under fire. Nor is this happening solely in Iraq.
Iran’s fortification of the Afghan Taliban also continues at a steady
clip. It may even be spiking now as the planned drawdown of
American forces gets under way. Again, the mullahs are determined
to pose as Allah’s avengers, casting the infidels out of Dar al-Islam.
They are getting plenty of help from the Obama administration. The
U.S. withdrawal is being driven by the political calendar, not
conditions on the ground. Thus our enemies — and Iran has always
been our principal enemy — get to make it look like whatever they
want it to look like."
It would be nice to hear something like this from the White House.
After being sworn into office, President Millard Fillmore, a member of the
Episcopal Church, stated: "The Sabbath day I always kept as a day of
rest. Besides being a religious duty, it was essential to health. On
commencing my Presidential career, I found that the Sabbath had
frequently been employed by visitors for private interviews with the
President. I determined to put an end to this custom, and ordered my
doorkeeper to meet all Sunday visitors with an indiscriminate refusal."
Prayer for America has long been the hallmark of a Christian nation.
Begining on Nov. 3, 2010 -- the day after the election day shake-up in the
Congress -- we began a count-down of days to pray about the next election
on Nov. 6, 2012 -- at that time 734 days away. Today that number has been
reduced to 482 days -- 482 days to pray for our nation, its leaders, and
for God's wisdom as we vote to reclaim America to the kind of a nation
our Founding Fathers intended it to be.
A few thoughtful examples of "What Others Are Saying."
Jack Marshall (Ethics Alarms): "Why should citizen patients and their
insurance companies be forced to pay increased costs for hospital
services that include the added costs of caring for other nations’ sick?
Why should American taxpayers? By what Bizarro World reasoning is it
appropriate for the individuals who violate laws and forge documents
to reach and remain in America to have free health care, paid for by
law abiding citizens. U.S. Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R,CA) contends the
answer isn't in providing more money for hospitals, but rather in
reducing the illegal immigrant population. What a remarkable concept!
Who would have thought of such a thing? This position, of course, makes
him a xenophobe, a racist ... and sane."
Sen. Marco Rubio (R,FL): “We don't need new taxes. We need new
taxpayers, people that are gainfully employed, making money and
paying into the tax system. And then we need a government that has the
discipline to take that additional revenue and use it to pay down the debt
and never grow it again. And that's what we should be focused on, and
that's what we're not focused on."
Thomas Sowell (economist, political philosopher and author): "A recent
poll showed that nearly half the American public believes that the
government should redistribute wealth. That so many people are so
willing to blithely put such an enormous and dangerous arbitrary power
in the hands of politicians -- risking their own freedom, in hopes of getting
what someone else has -- is a painful sign of how far many citizens and
voters fall short of what is needed to preserve a democratic republic."
"And now here are a few random "Afterthoughts" . . .
We have spoken before about Obama's "Crisis of Confidence."
Expressed in simpler terms: the American people just don't believe him. And
he does little to correct that impression. Quite the opposite; he seems to be
determined to mislead the public. Like last week when he took his re-election
campaign to "Twitter," he said: “By the way, people working at the White
House, they’ve had their pay frozen since I came in.” Not even close to
being true. Of the 270 White House staffers who have been there for more
than a year, 146 -- that's 54% -- have received raises. Some might make
unemployed Americans envious. Example: Matthew Vogel, special assistant
for economic policy, got an 82% raise to $130,500. And his salary isn't
all that unusual; 141 of the Obama White House aides receive over $100,000
annually -- that's approximately one-third of the staff. Looking at a chart of
the 20 top staff raises, they range from $20,000 to $59,000 per year. Sort
of out-of-step with the national employment situation!
An interesting thought: Keli Goff, political commentator, writing in
HuffPost, offers a list headed: "The Most Influential Non-Practicing/
Non-Traditional Christian American Politicians." Here is her list:
Rep. Keith Ellison (D,MN), the first Muslim elected to Congress; Rep.
Debbie Wasserman (D, FL), Jewish, Chair, Democrat National Committee;
Rep. Eric Cantor (R,VA), Jewish, House Majority Leader; Mayor Michael
Bloomberg (I, NY), Jewish; Former Gov. Mitt Romney (R, MA), Mormon;
Sen. Joe Lieberman (I, CT), Jewish; Sen. Harry Reid (D,NV), Mormon,
Senate Majority Leader; Rep. Pete Stark (D.CA), first openly Atheist in
Congress; Former Gov. Geo. Romney (R,MI), Mormon; Former Gov.
Culbert Olsen (D, CA), Mormon-Atheist. Her discussion point -- race has
been replaced by religion in a political candidate's attributes.
One of Obama's accomplishments you don't hear much about. It's not
not just unemployment, food costs, the price of gasoline, etc . that have risen --
according to the Annual Report of the U.S. Court System, the number of
requests for federal law enforcement wiretaps almost doubled from 663 in
2009 to 1,207 in 2010. ("Big Brother" may not be watching -- but he sure is
The continuing growth of decay in Main Line denominations. It seems
that each week brings some new announcement of a falling away from the
traditional Christian faith in some of our denominational churches. This week
the Presbyterian Church U.S.A.(PCUSA) began observing the newly revised
rule that permits openly gay men and women in same-sex relationships to be
ordained as clergy. The new policy was adopted after 97 of the church's
173 presbyteries approved the change in the church's constitution. This
week also, the United Church of Christ (UCC) -- the denomination with
which Mr. Obama was affiliated for more than 20 years -- took another
extremely Liberal step by removing all references to God "the Father" from the
church's organizational documents. The General Synod vote was 613 in favor
of the change, 171 against and 10 abstaining. In a somewhat more encouraging
stand, Roman Catholic bishops in New York State have reacted against the
state's legalizing homosexual marriages, for example, by banning elected
politicians from church services, and publishing this warning from Archbishop
Timothy Dolan:"If the experience of those few other states and countries
where this is already law is any indication, the churches, and believers,
will soon be harassed, threatened, and hauled into court for their conviction
that marriage is between one man, one woman."
We can't blame Obama for this . . . the Democrats who were in control
of both houses of Congress, yes -- but not Obama. He wasn't even close to
the White House in 2007 when Congress passed the "Energy Independence
and Security Act." It was signed into law by President George W. Bush on
December 19, 2007 -- and beginning in 2012, it bans the sale of incandescent
light bulbs. The main alternative to incandescent light bulbs are compact
fluorescent light bulbs (CFL) -- mostly made in China. They are loaded with
toxic mercury, which upon breakage or disposal, pollutes the environment via
seepage into groundwater, rivers and lakes, and threatens human health. So
be alert -- the effective date is less than 6 months away. The first attempt
by Republcans to kill the law failed yesterday, as Democrats rallied to uphold
it. There will doubtless be another attempt before the law's effective date.
On so many subjects, our Founding Fathers spoke very wise words.
"A fondness for power is implanted, in most men, and it is natural
to abuse it, when acquired." --Alexander Hamilton, 1775
"There are more instances of the abridgment of the freedom of the
people by gradual and silent encroachments of those in power than
by violent and sudden usurpations." -- James Madison, 1788