Thursday, October 30, 2008

Why Tuesday is very important to me...

I love my girls more than anything in the world, and I just want them to have the same opportunities I had when it comes to education, a career, a healthy life and financial security.

God will always take care of the spiritual matters (which are most important) regardless of the situation, so I don't worry about the Eternal for them. But, I do want them to live free to worship in the manner they feel lead to worship.

Before you vote Tuesday, and I hope all of you do regardless of your choices, please take the time to pray first. Ask for God to lead you in your decision, but also ask that He continue to bless our nation and guide our new leaders.

I'll be asking not just on my behalf...but also for them. I love you girls!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Bill Clinton: The Last Great Fiscal Conservative.

Here's an excellent article from yesterday's Wall Street Journal by Arthur B. Laffer:

The Age of Prosperity is Over

Bill Clinton has been the most fiscally conservative President in my lifetime. I know that makes blind-following Republicans cringe, but facts are facts. The New Democrat was able to reduce the $5.7 trillion national debt by $360 billion and create the largest federal budget surplus, as well as, the longest period of sustained economic growth in United States history. Of course, he didn't do it alone. Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich lead a Republican controlled Congress that supported and passed initiatives from the White House in a bipartisan effort to get spending under control.

Unfortunately, politics eventually took over, and the finger pointing started. It's a stupid Washington rule that R's can't let D's and D's can't let R's take credit for the few good things happening there...ever.

Here's where R's are going to start insisting that Clinton just benefited from what Reagan started. Really? Twelve years worth? I love Ronnie and all that he did for our country, but getting federal spending under control was not one of those things. By the end of Reagan's second term, the national debt ballooned from 26 percent of the GDP in 1980 to 41 percent in 1989. By 1988, the debt totalled $2.6 trillion. The country owed more to foreign countries than it was owed, and the United States moved from being the world's largest international creditor to the world's largest debtor nation. That's not fiscally conservative!

Republicans are quick to wave the flag of conservatism, but it's not always a talk-the-talk, walk- the-walk label. On some issues...sure. On fiscal issues...not so much lately.

If John McCain happens to somehow pull the election off next Tuesday, I hope he will walk the walk of a fiscal conservative. It would then be time for Democrats to return the favor to the White House their President received from 1992-2000.

Wow...those sure were the good ole days.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Where have you been 'Cut Spending' McCain?

"Stop spending our money like it grows on trees."

Finally, with 8 stinking days to go, John McCain comes out and states what he should have been stating all along. Talking today about the difference between him and BO:

"We both disagree with President Bush on economic policies," McCain said. "My approach is to get spending under control. The difference between us is he thinks taxes have been too low, and I think that spending has been too high."

If Senator McCain had pounded this message on the stump for the past two months instead of the publicly indifferent issues he has been spewing, he'd be looking back out BO instead of chasing him this final week.

You've got to believe that the majority of Americans understand what our Founding Fathers understood...a big federal government isn't good for our country or for us.

Let's face it. If the Republicans didn't bring spending under control the six years they controlled the White House and Congress, you can bet the farm Democrats sure won't given the same positions.

Unless Senator McCain and the RNC dump the mudslinging campaign that's having no effect on public opinion and focus on what he stated today (clearly and concisely), 2012 won't get here fast enough.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

More stimulus rebate checks? My poor great,great grandchildren...literally.

I'm sure like most average Americans, I was glad to see a little of the income taxes I payed returned to me this year. Sure, I made cracks around the office and at church about how happy China must be that the U.S. borrowed money from them to give back to the people, so they could buy more stuff from, well, from China. In the end though, I did what the President asked me to do with my money (again) and bought a sofa and a few other nice things. I didn't squirrel it away in my savings or dump it in my just seemed unpatriotic to spend my money, sorry, the stimulus rebate check that way.

Now, here we go again in Washington. 'What was a great idea once must be a second time.' If it works with atomic weapons (i.e. Hiroshima and Nagasaki), surely it works with economic issues. Hmmmm.

Okay, a hyperbole at best...but the result could end up about the same. 'Screaming, burning Asian people running through what was once streets?' No, but a few of the screams could come from Asian/Americans running after being burnt on Wall Street...along with everyone we continue to amass more and more debt.

Hey Washington, keep the check and apply it to the National debt. While you're at it, why don't you cut federal spending about 6% or so (to start). We'll all be a lot better off in the long run if we do that instead of making a $1 trillion deficit... $1.3 trillion.

By the way, I mean no disrespect to the Japanese or Asians in general, and my sofa was from North Carolina .

Monday, October 20, 2008

Yet another Christian killed in Afghanistan.

The story is a leading AP story -

Taliban: Aid worker killed for preaching

Here's her story - Gayle Williams

Please lift up a prayer for Gayle's family and celebrate she is in Heaven this day!

A break from politics...let's talk God.

Over the 18 months of managing the website (sorry, no longer up), I received a number of interesting emails from both atheist and agnostics. For me, it's easier to relate and respond to the agnostics, because I've been where they are spiritually at a point in my own life. The arrogance of atheists, however, really bothers me (I know, that's not very Christ like…I'm working on it). I had a conversation of the atheist variety this past weekend.

Atheists always want to bring up Pascal's Wager in discussions. Of course, the lack of scientific evidence is also a popular point for atheists, but responding to the point that there is no proof God exists is too easy…"Prove He doesn't exist." I think Thomas Aquinas covered this best almost 800 years ago in Summa Theologica.

So what is Pascal's Wager? Here's a quick refresher for you:

Blaise Pascal was a famous French mathematician, physicist and religious philosopher in the mid-1660's. People my age probably remember the computer programming language named after him in the late 70's and early 80's (and the only subject in college I made a D, thanks Blaise). Needless to say, he was a pretty smart fellow. His philosophy, however, took on a very rigid, structured matrix that didn't allow for more pliable principles and concepts.

In his Wager, Pascal attempts to provide an analytical process for a person to evaluate options in regarding belief in God. This is often misinterpreted as simply believing in God or not. As Pascal sets it out, the options are two: live as if God exists, or live as if God does not exist. There is no third possibility.
Therefore, we are faced with the following possibilities:

You live as though God exists (and follow His word).
  • If God exists, you go to heaven: your gain is infinite (best case).
  • If God does not exist, you gain nothing & lose nothing.

You live as though God does not exist.

  • If God exists, you go to hell: your loss is infinite (ouch, not good).
  • If God does not exist, you gain nothing & lose nothing (no time to gloat either).

With these possibilities, and the principles of statistics, Pascal attempted to demonstrate that the only prudent course of action is to live as if God exists. Now that's a nutshell version of the Pascal's Wager, but if you want more detailed information, click on the link above. For those mathmatically challenged, like me, best leave it here...just trust me.

Atheist, for some reason, rally around the Wager as the only possible explanation a rational person could believe in a 'fantasy' like God. When backed into a corner during a heated debate on God, it will come flying from an atheist out of no where…"You're just hedging Pascal's Wager on heaven and hell!" Then you'll get a 'top-that' look in their mind that surely closes the deal…well, not quite.

You see, my belief in God has little, if anything, to do with the fear of going to hell. Besides, you can't base your committment to God on just logic. He wants your love willingly and true. God knows your heart, so you can't bluff or hedge your way into heaven.

I love God because He is gracious enough, merciful enough to love me…yes me. That still blows my mind! The Creator of all that is, all that was, and all that ever will be cares about the most insignificant creation He made…me. Wow!

And how do I know? Because I talk to Him every day. I feel His presence in my life every day. I have His word that has stood the test of thousands of years to read from daily. I don't need the logic of Mr. Pascal and his mathematical equation to tell me to put my faith in God. Jesus took care of that long before Blaise…Hey, maybe we need a programming language based on His teachings.

It would at least be crash-proof.

May God bless you today in your walk with Him.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Sorry... I don't carry cash.

$53 trillion. That number is absolutely staggering, and it's the old number representing our national debt plus all the unfunded promises such as Social Security and Medicare, which have no future tax revenues to cover them. In additional, the FY2008/09 projected number for a $1 trillion budget deficit equates to almost 7.5% on the Gross Domestic Product. Now before you hock-loving types start bantering about the ratio of y to z is less than k on the third Sunday stuff, let's put it into terms we 'normal' everyday simple folk can relate.

In 2006, the US Census Bureau estimated there are 111,617,402 US households (+/- 145,530), so let's round to 111,500,000 for those of us mathematically challenged. Stay with me, here come a lot of zeros.

That's 53,000,000,000,000 divided by 111,500,000 which comes to...cancel the zeros, carry the 2...and...475,386.32....okay, rounded to 475,386. That's dollars. For each household. Wow.

Can I get a bailout?

'I don't trust either of dishonest politicians!' Joe the Plumber

Joe Biden, Joe Six-Pack and Joe the Plumber -
The plumber leads by 12 points in most polls.

Okay, Joe didn't really say that...but he could! Watching the debate last night was almost as painful for me as watching the Dodger lose in Game 5 of the NLCS. Almost. And poor Joe, he kept getting pulled in from both sides. 'My buddy Joe...' and 'Good ole Joe' references were used like cheap white paint trying to cover a deep red or deep blue wall. It's not working. partisan politics painted the dark walls to start. I'm sick of hearing the D's blame the R's and the R's blame the D's and then both pandering to the few polarizing issues that divide us into D's and R's. I just don't believe either of them is willing to fix the real problems.

McCain talked out of both sides of his mouth promising to control spending and give tax cuts on one side then promising more entitlement programs on the other. How does that work John? In my house, if we act on wants and not needs, we end up spending more money. Since there's only so much money to go around each month, spending more means something gives somewhere else (i.e. food, clothes, charity giving, etc.). I can't just go to my boss and declare 'I spent more this month, so I need more pay this month.' Of course, there's always...don't say cards (oh the humanity, the humanity!). More debt is definitely not the answer, and the biggest reason we're in the mess we're in today.

Then there's Mr. Debonair. Cool and sophisticated. At points in the debate, I was so enthralled by Obama's promises that I found myself opening my wallet and just throwing money at the TV. 'Take it...take it all!' Well, that's what it would pretty much be under his reign. God love 'em, Democrats are never going to give money back. No how, no way. Every answer BO gave seemed to start with 'The government...' Is that the answer to all our problems or the cause? Hmmmm.

Facts are facts. The R's had control of the White House and Congress for SIX YEARS. Did the federal government get smaller? Did the national deficit go away? Both got BIGGER. We all know the D's aren't going to make government smaller no sooner than fish are going to jump out of water everywhere and start walking to get around. It's just not going to happen.

Conservatives are being betrayed nationwide. Government has grown out of control for so many years, the obesity may be irreversible without major surgery. The surgeon needs to be us, the American voter (hey, I stay at Holiday Inn Express). What needs to be fixed is major - out of control spending, tax reform, campaign finance reform, and term limits for Congress just to name a few. It's the only option, and politicians needs to be held accountable to make it happen or be replaced... surgically removed. Washington has become too comfortable with incompetence and for incumbents.

I hate to use a Bill O'Reilly phrase (God forgive me please), but we have to stop drinking the Kool Aid...blind following. Republicans nominated the wrong guy. He can't beat Obama. He won't. Deal with it and start getting ready for the next fight. It's coming very soon. We need true conservative leadership in Washington...not big government politicians dressed up like conservatives. We have to demand the federal government not only be smaller, but also less intrusive in the free market and our free personal lives.

Let's get back to the basics of 1776, or even 1876, before we find our country being ran by only the special interest and a select few and not the 'We' in 'We the people...'

I hope we're not too late.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Senator Obama...please address this for all of us.

This is an actual photograph taken for a Chicago Magazine article in 2001. Bill Ayers was promoting his book Fugitive Days in the article.

I believe wholeheartedly in the First Amendment right of all Americans. In my days as a U.S. Marine officer or even today given the necessity, I would die to protect anyone's constitutionally guaranteed freedom to soundly, even rudely, disagree with my opinion on any given issue. To me, freedom of speech is a principle worth dying to protect. But this...this goes too far!

Ayers may have or may not have been your friend, Senator Obama, but you've got to publicly condemn this man for his radical views. As a potential (if not probable) Commander in Chief, you have to know too much blood has been spilled for our Standard...our colors...your flag. It's just as if Bill Ayers is standing directly on you, Mr. Obama, in disrespect. Please say it's just not right...because it's not, now and never should be.

Just say it for all of us and put it to rest.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Disagree without demonizing...brilliant Rick Warren...brilliant.

In case you missed the Saddleback Civil Forum in August, Rick Warren sat down with both presidential candidates and posed identical questions to each man separately. In light of the last debate this Wednesday already being twirled before the first word is actually spoken, I thought it would be refreshing to go back and look at Saddleback. The best website I found that was easy to navigate and use was on the CNN site. The link is below:

2008 Saddleback Civil Forum - Presidential Interviews

I encourage you to take the time to watch and listen. Rick doesn't go for a 'gotcha' moment, and both candidates seem relaxed and open. There are clear differences between the two in political policy ideology and views on the role of the President. Base your decision on those differences and not on mendacious junk emails that are circulated without personal consequence.

The 2008 Presidential election is too important for our country.

Monday, October 6, 2008

My vacation is over...but I've still been watching.

Okay. I've been off an entire week. Well, actually 9 days if you include weekends. In spite of the mother-load of material to blog away about over that time span, I was content to be a spectator and of no written sarcasms. I kept my barbs to a few close friends and family (which don't necessarily cross categories in this case) or snide remarks hurled at my television.

Scene from local support group meeting every Tuesday night at the VFW.

Tony: Hi, I'm Tony, and I'm a recovering Reagan Democrat with so many things to be mad about, I resort to yelling almost daily at whatever show happens to be on my TV at the time.

Group: Hi Tony (In unison from the 37 people in attendance).

Tony: I watched the Vice Presidential Debate last week...(groans from crowd)...yeah, I'm mad as heck too. But what do we do? What do we do? I've gotten to the point of screaming expletives at SportsCenter...both the 7am and 8am shows, which are basically just a repeat of the same highlights over again, kinda like Headline News used to do before Talk Radio people took over (more groans)...yeah, I know. I miss the repeating stories every half hour too with sports on at 20 and 50 minutes past the hour. That's where Van Earl Wright got his start, before American Gladiators, you know...

Group Moderator: Tony! You're rambling.

Tony: Sorry, I just can't bring myself to talk about it anymore. I feel so...helpless. McCain/Palin or Obama/Biden...I mean...well that's not even really a choice! What the heck now, come on! She uses phrases like 'gosh darn it' and 'golly geez' ..and Biden wouldn't know the truth if it ran over him. Don't even get me started on Oprah Obama or 'Is he is or is he ain't' McCain!

Group Moderator: Tony! Focus please!

Tony: (whining) I know...I know...where's Ron when we really need him! Please God, send him back...send him back! Just answer this one prayer. I take back the lottery prayer. Answer this one and I'll never curse at Glenn Beck again....I promise...on the TV or radio! Please, God please!

Group becomes completely unsettled and begin wailing and gnashing their teeth.

I'm researching something currently that I'll reserve comment on until after Tuesday night. That is, of course, if the world doesn't come to an end due to the black hole about to be created somewhere in Europe because we just can't leave some things well enough alone and have to spend billions of dollars to smash a few protons together...oh...sorry, I'm rambling again.