Saturday, May 29, 2021

Friday, May 28, 2021

Jackson, the Cat, Knows....

JACKSON, the world's cutest, loveliest cat knows, he just knows, I'm getting ready to leave for a fly fishing trip. So what does he do? He takes up residence for his morning nap on my freshly laundered, quick dry fishing shirt. I'd love to take him along, but he's not a catch and release kinda guy. His policy is catch and gobble, the faster, the better..... 

Meanwhile, we all wait for the latest rain shower to pass. Have a good, safe Memorial Day, as we remember all who have fought and died for our values and liberties. May God have mercy on us all.

Thursday, May 27, 2021

Triumvirate Of New, Real Conservative Blood To Help Show the Way Forward, But First.... Culture Shock 1

DECADES AGO I WENT ON A MONTH LONG 'STUDY' TOUR TO CHINA. It was in the mid-80s and I haven't a clue what deep down prompted me to do such a thing.  China had just opened up to outsiders and I must have wanted to see its mysterious culture as well as ours from a fresh perspective.

I certainly got more than I bargained for.  The first week everyone in our group got deathly ill with intestinal troubles. We learned to drink Chinese beer for breakfast, lunch and dinner because everywhere the water was  very iffy. By the second week,  I had gotten acquainted with some of my fellow travelers and discovered several were communists who simply adored Fidel Castro and all things Cuba.  I was silently appalled.  By the third week, many of us had severe respiratory illness and bronchitis from massive air pollution and dust that was blowing in from the Gobi Desert.    I coughed so hard I busted my gut and got an inguinal hernia.  By the time we flew back to Seattle a week before Thanksgiving,  I was in such culture shock that I had closed down and almost stopped talking. I had no idea what I would say to family at Thanksgiving dinner about my trip.  Other people in our group, mostly the communists, were buying extra suitcases and tons of stuff they could take back to LA and Hells Kitchen.  Not me,  I just wanted to get back to friendly American soil with the shirt on my back and if need be, die there.  Any friendly USA tarmac would do. I hoped the sound of thousands of bicycle bells would subside in my head.

Ultimately I learned to talk again, had my hernia repaired at Vanderbilt Hospital and and burned everything I brought back that reminded me of communist China--including my favorite Strauss Waltz cassette from Tiananmen square.

I tell this story today because I felt the same culture shock and foreignness last fall after the 2020 election that I did during my month in China almost 40 years ago. What a total surprise.

I'll  continue this in the next few days and call it 'Coming Out of Culture Shock In My Own Country.' 



Sunday, May 23, 2021

Pentecost--- Time Followers of Jesus Become Little, Mobile Temples After He Ascends To the Father And Sends the Holy Spirit


THIS IS THE AWESOME UNFOLDING OF SALVATION HISTORY.  Today, as then, when a person is born again, the Holy Spirit comes to indwell them

 The Holy Spirit Comes at Pentecost, from Acts 2

 1 When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. 2 Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. 3 They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. 4 All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues[a] as the Spirit enabled them. 5 Now there were staying in Jerusalem God-fearing Jews from every nation under heaven. 6 When they heard this sound, a crowd came together in bewilderment, because each one heard their own language being spoken. 7 Utterly amazed, they asked: “Aren’t all these who are speaking Galileans? 8 Then how is it that each of us hears them in our native language? 9 Parthians, Medes and Elamites; residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia,[b] 10 Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya near Cyrene; visitors from Rome 11 (both Jews and converts to Judaism); Cretans and Arabs—we hear them declaring the wonders of God in our own tongues!” 12 Amazed and perplexed, they asked one another, “What does this mean?” 13 Some, however, made fun of them and said, “They have had too much wine.” Peter Addresses the Crowd 14 Then Peter stood up with the Eleven, raised his voice and addressed the crowd: “Fellow Jews and all of you who live in Jerusalem, let me explain this to you; listen carefully to what I say. 15 These people are not drunk, as you suppose. It’s only nine in the morning! 16 No, this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel: 17 “‘In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams. 18 Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days, and they will prophesy. 19 I will show wonders in the heavens above and signs on the earth below, blood and fire and billows of smoke. 20 The sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood before the coming of the great and glorious day of the Lord. 21 And everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.’[c] 22 “Fellow Israelites, listen to this: Jesus of Nazareth was a man accredited by God to you by miracles, wonders and signs, which God did among you through him, as you yourselves know. 23 This man was handed over to you by God’s deliberate plan and foreknowledge; and you, with the help of wicked men,[d] put him to death by nailing him to the cross. 24 But God raised him from the dead, freeing him from the agony of death, because it was impossible for death to keep its hold on him. 25 David said about him: “‘I saw the Lord always before me. Because he is at my right hand, I will not be shaken. 26 Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices; my body also will rest in hope, 27 because you will not abandon me to the realm of the dead, you will not let your holy one see decay. 28 You have made known to me the paths of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence.’[e] 29 “Fellow Israelites, I can tell you confidently that the patriarch David died and was buried, and his tomb is here to this day. 30 But he was a prophet and knew that God had promised him on oath that he would place one of his descendants on his throne. 31 Seeing what was to come, he spoke of the resurrection of the Messiah, that he was not abandoned to the realm of the dead, nor did his body see decay. 32 God has raised this Jesus to life, and we are all witnesses of it. 33 Exalted to the right hand of God, he has received from the Father the promised Holy Spirit and has poured out what you now see and hear. 34 For David did not ascend to heaven, and yet he said, “‘The Lord said to my Lord: “Sit at my right hand 35 until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet.”’[f] 36 “Therefore let all Israel be assured of this: God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Messiah.” 37 When the people heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and the other apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?” 38 Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call.” 40 With many other words he warned them; and he pleaded with them, “Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.” 41 Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day.

Saturday, May 22, 2021

Master Pilot

MY BAD INFLUENCE sent this. 

Thursday, May 20, 2021

Tal Bachman @ American Greatness Tells It Like It Is: The Republican Party Sucks


Canadian Tal Bachman is fast becoming one of my favorite political thinkers and writers.  He's fearless and right most of the time. To wit: 

The Republican Party Sucks


Once upon a time, the Republican Party didn’t suck. Actually, there were lots of times it didn’t suck.

It didn’t suck when, at its founding in the late 1850s, it declared slavery an inhumane, barbaric practice, and eventually ended it. It didn’t suck when it ended repressive and predatory Mormon polygamy a few decades later. It didn’t suck when it declared late 19th-century corporate monopolies to be injurious to representative democracy and citizen welfare, and diminished their power.

It didn’t suck under President Dwight D. Eisenhower, who presided over a postwar era of peace and prosperity. It didn’t suck when it fought segregationist Democrats to ensure equal application of the law. It didn’t suck when it fought against communism for half a century, and then won.

But starting with the presidency of George H. W. Bush, it really began sucking.

It was Bush Senior who pushed America into the first Persian Gulf War amidst a massive PR snow job involving fake stories about little Kuwaiti kids. It was Bush who framed that war as a glorious opportunity and morally obligatory step toward a “new world order”—by which he meant the eventual dissolution of national borders (including those of the United States) and the rise of one-world-government.

He also pushed economic corollaries to his political one-worldism. He relentlessly preached free trade ideology, eventually signing NAFTA in December of 1992. He laid the groundwork for the World Trade Organization, which would officially emerge in 1995. He began pushing for open trade with Communist China. He refused to protect American manufacturing—auto manufacturing, among other types—against subsidized imports intended to destroy American industries. His 1990 Immigration Act triggered a perpetual flood of cheap Latin American labor which inevitably undercut working-class wages at home.

Every step of the way, establishment Republicans supported him. All in all, in just four years, the Republican Party, under Bush Senior, initiated the de-industrialization of the United States of America; the devastation of thousands of working-class communities and families; the acceleration of disruptive demographic change; and the national slide toward dependence on—that is, control by—China.

So, obviously, all that sucks. What also sucks is that ever since, the Republican Party—with only a few exceptions here and there—has just sucked more and more.

Take W’s tenure. It includes an FBI which failed to intercept a devastating  9/11 terrorist attack, months in the making, which killed 3,000 people, despite many opportunities for detection.



So what are we gonna do about it?  Continue to be nice and agreeable?  Or get to work.

Tuesday, May 18, 2021

John Tamny On What Inflation Is and Isn't

Tamny writes:

That inflation is presently the economic story du jour is a likely signal that commenters are a bit shaky about what it is. Economists and most on the left have wholly redefined it as a too much economic growth. Some on the right point to rising commodities, except that they were near monolithically mute in the 2000s when commodities rallied much more substantially. Like everything else, inflation has become a political issue. In reality, it's a devaluation of the unit. In our case the dollar. Inflation is a policy choice as opposed to it being a consequence of some other policy choice. And to claim that rising prices cause inflation is like blaming rain on wet sidewalks. It reverses causation. The opinion piece can be found here.
It shouldn't take a PhD in economics for us to realize each and every time the government prints trillions more dollars and pours them into the financial system, it dilutes our dollars and their buying power. Then it takes more of our dollars to buy the same goods and services. Presto, welcome to the world of inflation and ultimately hyper-inflation if the printing press can't be slowed down.

Sunday, May 16, 2021

Sunday, Touchiness

Do we need to develop Holy Indifference?

A person's wisdom yields patience; it is to one's glory to overlook an offense---Proverbs 19:11

TOUCHINESS. A body part that is injured or inflamed responds with instant recoil when touched. The Hebrew word for patience here means a relaxed face rather than one that instantly snarls when provoked. When people say something you don't like, do you shoot right back? Or do you slow your response and act rather than react? What is so touchy about us? We feel we must defend our glory or honor. It is our ego that is so sensitive.

This should tell us something.  We don't notice body parts unless there is something wrong with them. We don't say, ' My elbows are working great today!' But the ego calls attention to itself every minute.  Sin has distorted our identity, the very basis of our sense of self.  We need saving, repairing grace. If our egos were working properly, we would know that true glory  is to let a slight or irritation go without paying back.  Jesus said, 'Father, forgive them for they do not know what they are doing.'(Luke 23:34) That is real glory.

Do you fairly easily feel hurt, slighted, and put down, and do you take criticism very hard?


Prayer:  Lord, today I was very touchy with someone.  Yes I was tired and stressed out over many things. But so what? You were under far greater stress and never shot back an angry word. Let me wonder and praise you for your patience until it begins to grow in me.  Amen.


Excerpt from  God's Wisdom for Navigating Life, A Year if Daily Devotions in the Book of Proverbs, page 133

Timothy Keller with Kathy Keller.

Saturday, May 15, 2021

Blue Bloods Lost Me Friday Night

THE FIRST BLOODY MINUTE OF BLUE BLOODS was so reprehensible to me last night that I got up from the sofa and called it a night to my viewing friend.  I am told it was a great two hour show but I don't care.  That kind of in-my-face violent opening will have to go on without me. 

I love the cast and most of the scripts.   But I believe in self censorship and that's what I did last night.   Bye, bye Blue Bloods. It's been nice knowing you for the most part!  

Tuesday, May 11, 2021

Texas Stands Up to DC's Over-Reach In Every Aspect of Our Lives

Don Surber via HotAir reports major progress in Texas against unconstitutional overreach of the federal government in DC:


 "Texas Republican lawmakers are moving forward with a conservative agenda and Governor Abbott took a moment Saturday to celebrate that. Abbott tweeted out a list of conservative legislative victories achieved in the Texas House of Representatives over the span of 48 hours. It’s enough to make any Republican governor up for re-election proud."

The victories were:

* Defund cities that defund police

* Ban abortion at detection of heartbeat

* Slash STAAR test requirements

* Ban homeless camping statewide

* Penalize protestors blocking roads

* Ensure election integrity- easy to vote, hard to cheat


Texans voted Republican and actually got Republican. The revolution is taking place in statehouses, not DC.


We need a lot more governors like Abbott, DeSantis and StateHouses to take back our country.  

Monday, May 10, 2021

Mike Lindell's Corn Palace Rally Monday Has 'Amazing Demand'


WHAT FUN!  What a great idea!  And you thought Lindell was washed up.....

Arnott and Tamny: Lunacy of Raising Capital Gains Tax on the Economy and Innovation




While it’s hard to imagine Silicon Valley’s remarkable dynamism evaporating as a consequence of higher capital gains taxes, increased penalties on investment will discourage riskier initiatives. This is crucial when we consider the high rate of failure among startups. Most fail, and none are sure things. Accordingly, it’s a safe bet that a higher capital gains rate ensures many great ideas will never attract capital and will die.  There’s a reason none of the FANG stocks -- Facebook, Amazon, Netflix, Google (Alphabet) -- were launched in Europe or Japan.    

Consider Elon Musk. He’s now worth about $200 billion.  If he decided to cash in his Tesla stock and move the money to a Mars venture, the feds would help themselves to $48 billion now, or $87 billion under Biden’s proposal, and a whopping $114 billion if he had remained in California. Imagine all the transformative ideas Musk could seed if politicians had shorter fingers.     

Economic growth is lubricated by the relentless movement of wealth to its best use. Assuming Biden’s tax vision becomes law, the cost of wealth migration will soon soar. The easiest way to avoid capital gains taxes is to leave your money wherever it is, rather than redeploying it to the next great idea. The result is that Biden’s tax plan will not raise additional tax revenues, but will subsidize stasis

All of this and more came to mind for us last week. A little more than 24 years ago, President Clinton signed into law a reduction in the capital gains tax from 28% to 20%. While the tax on capital gains should be zero to encourage innovation and risk-bearing, Clinton’s signature sent a positive signal that the “New Democrats” of his era well understood the importance of economic growth. How things have changed in the modern Democratic Party. Innovation will be the loser if Biden gets his way.      

Indeed, for those eager to create a better future with courageous investments, the cost of doing so will soar. Progress has always been expensive, but at a levy of 43% to 57%? Oh, well -- there will always be munis.    

Rob Arnott is founding chairman of Research Affiliates, LLC.

John Tamny is editor of RealClearMarkets, vice president at FreedomWorks, and author of the new book “When Politicians Panicked: The New Coronavirus, Expert Opinion, and a Tragic Lapse of Reason.”

Sunday, May 9, 2021

Mother's Day and Lady Wisdom


OH TO BE A WISER AND WISER MOTHER OF LIFE AND LADY WISDOM.....It's an unending process but, with God's help, we make progress...... Happy Mother's Day!


The Blessings of  Lady Wisdom Proverbs 8

1 Does not wisdom call out? Does not understanding raise her voice? 2 On the heights along the way, where the paths meet, she takes her stand; 3 beside the gates leading into the city, at the entrances, she cries aloud: 4 "To you, O men, I call out; I raise my voice to all mankind. 5 You who are simple, gain prudence; you who are foolish, gain understanding. 6 Listen, for I have worthy things to say; I open my lips to speak what is right. 7 My mouth speaks what is true, for my lips detest wickedness. 8 All the words of my mouth are just; none of them is crooked or perverse. 9 To the discerning all of them are right; they are faultless to those who have knowledge. 10 Choose my instruction instead of silver, knowledge rather than choice gold, 11 for wisdom is more precious than rubies, and nothing you desire can compare with her. 12 "I, wisdom, dwell together with prudence; I possess knowledge and discretion. 13 To fear the LORD is to hate evil; I hate pride and arrogance, evil behavior and perverse speech. 14 Counsel and sound judgment are mine; I have understanding and power. 15 By me kings reign and rulers make laws that are just; 16 by me princes govern, and all nobles who rule on earth. [1] 17 I love those who love me, and those who seek me find me. 18 With me are riches and honor, enduring wealth and prosperity. 19 My fruit is better than fine gold; what I yield surpasses choice silver. 20 I walk in the way of righteousness, along the paths of justice, 21 bestowing wealth on those who love me and making their treasuries full. 22 "The LORD brought me forth as the first of his works, [2] [3] before his deeds of old; 23 I was appointed [4] from eternity, from the beginning, before the world began. 24 When there were no oceans, I was given birth, when there were no springs abounding with water; 25 before the mountains were settled in place, before the hills, I was given birth, 26 before he made the earth or its fields or any of the dust of the world. 27 I was there when he set the heavens in place, when he marked out the horizon on the face of the deep, 28 when he established the clouds above and fixed securely the fountains of the deep, 29 when he gave the sea its boundary so the waters would not overstep his command, and when he marked out the foundations of the earth. 30 Then I was the craftsman at his side. I was filled with delight day after day, rejoicing always in his presence, 31 rejoicing in his whole world and delighting in mankind. 32 "Now then, my sons, listen to me; blessed are those who keep my ways. 33 Listen to my instruction and be wise; do not ignore it. 34 Blessed is the man who listens to me, watching daily at my doors, waiting at my doorway. 35 For whoever finds me finds life and receives favor from the LORD. 36 But whoever fails to find me harms himself; all who hate me love death." 

And this:

Fight the good fight with all thy might;

Christ is thy strength, and Christ thy right:

lay hold on life, and it shall be

thy joy and crown eternally.

Run the straight race through God's good grace,

lift up thine eyes, and seek his face;

life with its way before us lies,

Christ is the path, and Christ the prize.

Cast care aside; upon thy Guide

lean, and his mercy will provide;

lean, and the trusting soul shall prove,

Christ is its life and Christ its love.

Faint not, nor fear, his arms are near;

he changeth not, and thou art dear;

only believe, and thou shalt see

that Christ is all in all to thee.


(This hymn-prayer was composed by John Monsell, an Irish priest in the Church of England, who died in 1870 when falling from his church roof while checking renovations)


Friday, May 7, 2021

Wednesday, May 5, 2021

On the Trail After Stormy Weather Clears Out

 THIS AFTERNOON the rain and clouds finally rolled out of Middle Tennessee leaving sunshine and cool, crisp air cleared of the choking pollen that has been lurking in the atmosphere for weeks. It was a perfect opportunity for a hike in the state park nearby. Water was running everywhere. Above is a photo from the trail of a disheveled and drenched Tulip Poplar flower, from our state tree. Its pattern and vibrant colors have always attracted me. Ferns have unfurled everywhere on the forest floor and spring is approaching summer at warp speed.  Then walking early in the day is the only way to beat the stiffling heat and humidity. Meanwhile, we have another reprieve Thursday and I hope to be there.

Sunday, May 2, 2021

Sunday---The Bible Project: God Is Slow To Anger....What Does That Mean?

WHEN WE CONSISTENTLY DISOBEY, God is angry enough to give us over to our own way, our passions instead of God's way. It always comes back either to cure us or kill us.