Thursday, January 29, 2009

Here and There

I read several articles of interest this morning. We will start with the ones here in America.

First, according to WorldNetDaily columnist Bob Unruh, part of the recently passed "stimulus" bill has a section that would "demand that every American submit to a government program for electronic medical records without a choice to opt out, and it has privacy advocates more than a little alarmed. " I can see a nice little bridge from here to gov. mandated eugenics. Call me crazy, but I think this is bad news.

Second, my new friends at the Cornwall Alliance alerted me to this article by Paul Dressen at Townhall about energy and the economy. Here is a portion of it.

Many states have oil, gas, coal uranium and other energy and mineral resources, within their borders or off their coasts. Development would produce critically needed energy, reduce oil and gas imports, create millions of jobs, and generate trillions of dollars in lease bonus, rent, royalty and tax revenues, to help pay these bills.

California could nearly double its offshore oil production within 12-18 months, without installing a single new platform, by using directional drilling technology to bore more wells from existing platforms.

But environmentalists vigorously oppose development. Many states increasingly restrict exploration and production. The US Senate is considering bills that would place more energy prospects off limits. Many legislators want a permanent lock on billions of barrels of oil beneath Alaska’s North Slope and America’s Outer Continental Shelf – despite support for drilling by two-thirds of voters.

Third, across they ocean in Scotland we have a story that should serve as warning to us. LifeSiteNews has this article by Terry Vanderheyden.

According to the Daily Mail, the court found the grandparents, who are 46 and 59, to be too old to adequately raise the children. The grandparents could not afford to continue the expensive legal process, and therefore resolved to give the children up for adoption provided the new adoptive parents would be a loving mother and father.

Soon after the ruling, however, the couple was informed that their five year old grandson and four year old granddaughter, who had been living in a foster home during the custody battle because their mom was a heroine addict, were being put into the care of a homosexual couple.

“It breaks my heart to think that our grandchildren are being forced to grow up in an environment without a mother figure. We are not prejudiced, but I defy anyone to explain to us how this can be in their best interests," said the grandfather.

This article saddens me for both the children and the grandparents. If this woman had been artificially inseminated, most people in Scotland would have thought it fine for this couple to raise a child. But when she wants to care for her own grandchildren, the courts say no. And now these poor kids will never have a maternal influence. The whole thing is really sad.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009


I called my Congresswoman, Kay Granger, to ask her to not vote for this massive "stimulus" quickly becoming pork-a-rama bill. I was told by her staff to read this article in the Star Telegram. I found that not only does Kay Granger oppose the bill in its current form, but so do her Tarrant County colleagues. (That makes sense, since this is one of the most Republican areas of the country.)

The very beginning of the article caught my eye. Here is the quote:

While Texas is expected to get an estimated $25 billion to $30 billion of the massive $825 billion economic stimulus package, Tarrant County’s Republican congressional delegation says the combination of public works spending, more dollars for federal programs and tax cuts is too high a price to pay. (I added the bold.)

Now according to this website the population of Texas is about 21 million. So that means (if my math is right) that Texas is expected to receive about $1200 for every man, woman, and child in the state. About $4,800 for my family of 4.

I think if every American were actually given that much money they would waste it (generally speaking) faster than the government. I think that the root of this whole economic problem is that we the people have forgotten that federal money is all ours to begin with. We look at handouts as "free" money. We also have no concept of economics. We have no sense of stewardship before God. Our government is a reflection of ourselves.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

What Ifs

One of the hardest things in life is to not be plagued by the what ifs in it. Recently my son's bird, Nibbler, was hurt by his dog, Shadow. Yesterday Nibbler died from the stress of that incident. When he died, my son and I were both plagued with what ifs. What if we hadn't clipped his flight feathers? What if we had been quicker to get there when we heard squawking? What if we had locked the cage doors? (Nibbler had learned to open the doors and had gotten out.) Anyway, you get the idea.

I think that God wants us to look back at our mistakes or at problems honestly. I think he wants us to grow and learn through them. Not get stuck on the what ifs.

Today we will be having a small funeral for Nibbler so that the kids can say, "Goodbye." Then we will be moving on with a new bird.

Monday, January 26, 2009

The Church and Government Handouts

I went to a medical missions seminar this weekend. My mom and her husband were there too so I was especially glad to go. There were many interesting speakers. One of them was challenging those of us in smaller denominations with charitable organizations to go after bigger grants via the Faith Based Initiatives program that Pres. Bush started and Pres. Obama claims to support.

Many people in the audience seemed almost giddy with the prospect. I on the other hand felt a sense of dread. Is it really wise for the Church to be any more intertwined with the government than we already are? It is bad enough to be in contract with the government via 501(c)(3)'s. I really feel that we would be much better off if there were more free churches in the US. And now this link of money. It may be benign enough now. But once you start getting a million dollars here and there, it will be hard to turn your back on it once the rules change.

I am guessing that the rules will change but gradually. There will be baby steps in a direction until the 501(c)(3)'s board of directors feel uncomfortable. Then how do they live without these grants that they have become dependant on. They have lost connections with individual donors because more of their time is spent pursuing the government. Will they have the guts to say no thank you to a million dollars after depending on it previously?

I hope I am just being cynical and jaded. But I think it is a slippery road to start on. Stick with actual people who actually support your cause and believe what you believe.

Sunday, January 25, 2009


Kiss by Ted Dekker and Erin Healy is certainly a page-turner; I read the whole thing in a couple of days. I enjoyed the unique plot and its various twists (though you could see some of them coming if you were paying attention).

I think the point of this book is really needed in today's society. The point, as I understand it, is that you can either gain perspective from your mistreatment or problems in life or you can gain pain. The choice is up to you. I also really liked the theme of the truth being worth fighting (possibly dying) for. I found this refreshing in a society leaning more and more toward truth being relative.

The main reason that I cannot give this book five stars is I found the memory stealing abilities of the heroine a little unnerving. That is an ability that I would attribute more to a "bad guy". Shauna, the heroine does see it as stealing, but she feels she has no choice.

Also if you are looking for Christian fiction, this book may leave you wanting a little deeper spiritual emphasis. On the other hand, if you just want a good clean read with suspense and intrigue then I recommend Kiss.